This post is entirely from a Goliath perspective.
I could swear this was supposed to be a valid tactic to get rid of it, but goddamn, I feel like I can chuck rocks at a person for a full minute, beat on them relentlessly and it still holds strong. The “switching targets” tactic is okay, but when you want to actually down someone and the medic is on point, this is rough.
Of course, you can just kill the bot itself, but there’s so many awkward spots Sunny can drop the damned thing that you seemingly can’t get a rock throw on (and a flame breath is nowhere near strong enough, it has an absurd amount of health) and she can easily redeploy it fairly quickly after.
The best option seems to be to simply line of sight the damned thing, which isn’t always possible, especially when the drone is at its strongest, when I’m stage 3 and basically forced to fight at the relay.
This… actually segues nicely into my next problem. The monster getting to stage 3 is supposed to be a nightmare for the hunters, a borderline unwinnable uberboss, but in reality, I’m WAY more effective and powerful at stage 2 because I choose the battleground. At stage 3 they can just camp the relay and I’m forced to enter their turtle setup, typically where they have lots of really tall, awkward pillars to dance on.
While a really good team should be totally capable of taking down a stage 3 monster if they’re all on their A-game and playing better than the monster, I feel like a lot of the relays are set up in ways that HEAVILY favor the hunters, at least versus a Goliath. I actually kind of feel like the relay hurts the game more than it helps. The number of times I’ve actually destroyed the relay out of my 185ish wins is probably less than 5, and those all grudgingly because of someone stealthing after every fight to wait for the dropship – a decent tactic normally, but when it’s totally hopeless, you should probably just give it up. When I’m downing your entire team before you get through 1/5th of my armor, you’re kind of just wasting your own time, but whatever, I can down the relay in that case.
As usual, going off on a tangent. I feel like the concept of the relay is good, but the implementation is… lacking in higher level play. I’d personally prefer a system where the Monster hits the evolve key after hitting stage 3 (and getting some energy) to… do something. I dunno, it doesn’t matter, if he fills up this very slow bar (that shows where he is clearly and takes FOREVER to fill up, like killing the relay but slower since he could be anywhere) then he wins. Maybe he’s pooping eggs everywhere and the area becomes too hot. It doesn’t matter.
This way, a stage 3 monster is no longer something you turtle up on ideal terrain and wait for. It’s something you fear, something that can take the fight exactly where it wants it. It would make games that end at stage 3 far more dramatic and dynamic. Keep the timer where the hunters win if the monster is too evasive and refuses to engage or complete their goal, but ditch the “stand and hit this thing” mechanic.
Hitting stage 3 should never be an auto-win for a monster, but going stage 3 shouldn’t feel like I’m sacrificing something, it should be me hitting the peak of my power. As it stands I will always try to finish a match in stage 2. With the entire concept of the game being “hunters get weaker over time as the monster grows in strength” it feels SO backwards right now.
For Goliath. I should keep pointing that out. I pretty much play Goliath exclusively. Me hitting stage 3 hasn’t been ideal since the first week or so (against a good team, then again I can down average pugs in stage 1, so…) but with this new tier, this fact has become more prominent than ever, specifically but not just due to Sunny’s shield bot. I’m not saying that’s OP, it’s just a jumping point for discussion, I actually really like the shield bot, and clearly need more practice against it.
Just so you don’t think I’m crying like a baby, I’ve lost like… one game? Due to this, and that was probably due to just being outplayed. But I notice that EVERY time I go stage 3, the match is way closer than it should be compared to stage 2, where I rule the battlefield.
Going around in circles now, I’ll shut up!