Hunter Team Theory- Don't Dome


#1

I have an interesting idea for a hunter team composition that revolves around using Kala’s Armor Reducer. I haven’t actually played using this team so I don’t know if it would actually be effective, but I have a feeling that it could perform fairly well, in Hunt mode.

The Team: Parnell, Crow, Caira, Kala

Perks: Reload Speed for Caira and Kala; Movement Speed or Jetpack Recharge for Crow; Magazine Size, Damage Increase, or Reload Speed for Parnell

The strategy would be to chase the monster down using Caira’s Acceleration Field and Crow’s Stasis Gun so that Parnell and Kala can get close enough to the monster for Kala to use her Armor Reducer in conjunction with Parnell’s SS in order to do a lot of burst health damage to the monster. However, the trapper would not dome the monster- permitting it to instead try to get away. But by using the acceleration field, Stasis Gun, and perhaps teleporters the hunter would stay close the monster to prevent it from evolving and do damage past its armor until the monster dies.

Now this begs the question- Why not just dome the monster to do more damage? Why try to keep up with it? The short answer is: Doming is too risky and actually results in a loss of control for the hunters.

There are 3 ways for the hunters to win:

  1. Kill the monster before Stage 3
  2. Kill the monster at Stage 3
  3. Delay the monster long enough to time out

The 3rd way is relatively uncommon because when the timer starts counting down the monster will force the fight, so we will ignore it for the purpose of this discussion.

We know from Arena mode that a full health, full armor Stage 2 monster can beat a full health hunter team. So, it makes since that for the hunters to kill a Stage 3 monster they have to hurt the monster so that while at Stage 3 it has less health than its max health at Stage 2. Another way to look at is that in order for the hunters to win the 2nd way they have to get really close to winning the 1st way. Before Kala, the only way to reliably kill a monster before Stage 3 was to dome it, destroy its armor, then chisel away at its health. However, doming has its risks.

When the monster is trapped, it often fights back. And as a result, the monster gets strikes on the hunters. So although the hunter team has done a ton a lot of damage by the end of the game, they are weakened and the final battle becomes a test to see who won the war of attrition.

Now lets say the hunters get close to the monster and don’t dome, what does the monster do?

  1. Run away
  2. Fight the hunters without the dome

For this team comp 1 is preferable, because we should have no problem keeping track and keeping up with the monster. This allows us to prevent it from evolving and allows us to use the Armor Reducer to burst our way through its health. If the monster chooses to engage us, then we have control. If the monster tries to flee after a long battle, we still have the dome available- the monster might be out of armor and low on health so we throw the dome to fight some more. If we are in bad shape we can let the monster go. By saving the dome we are less likely to receive strikes and more likely to trap the monster at times it is most beneficial for us.

TL;DR: With this team comp it may actually be beneficial to never dome the monster and instead closely chase it and use Armor Reducer/SS to burst damage its health until it dies. By not throwing the dome the hunters are less likely to get downed by the monster and the dome can be saved for a more opportune moment.

Possible Substitutions:
Crow for Wasteland Maggie. Although the Stasis Gun is more effective at slowing the monster down and Crow has the extra utility of the Charge Rifle, Daisy makes it easier to find the monster early and the single Harpoon trap has a large enough radius to perhaps be able to slow down the monster.

Caira for Val. Val’s Tranq Darts may be more effective at slowing the monster than Caira’s Acceleration Field is at speeding the team up, plus the Tranqs highlight the monster to make it slightly easier to track. Obviously Val’s tranq require LOS and the Acceleration field can be used in the beginning of the game. I’d say it is more a matter of preference.

Edit: So I tried 5 Solo games using this team (once against each monster). My focus was mostly on seeing if this team could reliably keep up with the monster. I loaded up as Crow with Movement Speed, dropped in, gave the monster an additional 30 second head start, then started chasing it. The results worked pretty well- I was often able to find the monster Stage 1 (4/5) and was able to prevent it from Evolving to Stage 2 (3/4). We killed Stage 2 or sooner. Basically I kept on highlighting it with gobi and shooting stasis at it and allowed my team to get some nice damage in. I should note that I actually played as WM against Behemoth and she performed very well- she might even be better because it will be easier to track monsters that sneak.
However, playing against bots isn’t the same as humans so I encourage anyone with more friends than I to try this team online.


#2

The reason why I feel this isn’t as good as it sounds is that on the chase you have plenty of opportunities for the hunter team to get out of sync with each other. In a dome you at least know you can work positions as a hunter, on the chase all it takes is for a slight over extension, jetpack mismanagement, and an observant monster can turn on you


#3

Although I agree that this strategy requires a lot more co-ordination, I think that the hunters will be close enough during the chase that even if the monster takes advantage of a hunter weakness it wouldn’t be too devastating. Plus, jetpack mismanagement and the like can happen in a dome too. The synchronization the dome provides might not be worth the risk of a receiving strikes.


#4

A dome is a known factor for hunters though. A trapper shouldn’t be doming in a bad spot for the hunters, but on the chase the hunters lose all control over the engagement, 100% of the time.

Edit: to be clear, there is just as much a risk of strikes without the dome, I don’t understand why your argument is that without a dome you are somehow more safe?


#5

The way I see it- the monster is either fighting the hunters or not fighting the hunters. While the monster is fighting the hunters there is a much higher risk of receiving a strike. Doming the monster encourages the monster to fight the hunters. What I am arguing is that while using this team not doming the monster is a safer alternative that still allows the hunters to kill the monster. And if the monster chooses to fight the hunters then saving the dome allows the trapper to use it later- perhaps when the low health monster is trying to flee.
Of course, if it is impossible to reliably chase the monster in order to deal enough damage with the Armor Reducer/SS combo than yes, doming is important for controlling the engagement. But I think that it is possible to keep up with the monster without using the dome.

Edit: Like in Defend you don’t always dome the monster when it starts attacking the generator, sometimes you wait for it to run out of armor and tries to run away so that you can hurt it more. Similarly, I am arguing that this hunter comp doesn’t need to dome


#6

Imo I don’t see how this comp can keep up with the monster without the monster allowing that to happen, but that is just my view


#7

And that might be the case, I don’t know. shrugs. I haven’t tried it out.


#8

So this is a really cool idea I might try this. However, Cairas acceleration field really doesn’t make a team faster long term. Someone did the math and because of how frequently you can jet pack, in 400 m you would only travel 30ish meters farther. Instead I would say Val with tranqs would be better or slim for damage. Also what happens when crow gets caught in a plant and the monster gets way ahead. And don’t give me it only happens to bad players. Plants will occasionally catch everyone especially if they are chasing hard. To be clear crow is perfect because he can chip away health and slow the monster. Parnell is perfect because of speed boost. Kala is necessary because of teleporters and AR. However, monsters get traversals faster when shot so I don’t know if hunters could keep up. Definently do damage but I’m not sure if they could kill or get near killing with this.


#9

Um… are we trying to create a Sunny Chase Comp 2.0?

I mean why not just use Sunny anyway? Just remove the Armor the old fashion way?

Parnell would have to be super close in order to deal solid damage and Kala would need line of sight and would need Jetpack fuel to stay in sight as would Parnell and in order to stay on the Monster you’ve got to use the Jetpacks. Crow would have to do the same to make sure he gets the Charged Shot on the Monster to make sure it gets slowed.

A smart Monster will actually laugh at this attempt. Caira will be easy to down after she burns through her Acceleration and Jetpack just to keep up with her team or carry them with her.

A Caira with only a Healburst and her crummy self healing to save her with no speed boost or fuel is a “Soon-to-be-Dead” Caira.


#10

I hadn’t thought about using val’s tranq gun- I’ll add it to the possible substitutions. I think that Slim is a bad choice because we are more concerned with keeping up with the monster and less with doing damage. I think that getting caught in plants/wildlife is another good reason for considering WM because Daisy can keep track of the monster even if crow loses it.


#11

Kala is the centerpiece of the team- it’s not about chasing the monster, it’s about damaging the monster without doming it. But, you might be right. The team might be bad, but I still think that it warrants trying. I’ve done some solo games and it has worked pretty well.


#12

Solo games with AI Hunters vs a an AI Monster is a terrible way to test things and say that it has “worked pretty well.”

Ever since as a Parnell and I literally soloed a Kraken AI who was Stage 2 and running on foot the whole time as I shot him in the ass the whole time I’ve realized that AI are idiots until it’s a f**king Goliath who’s actually fighting (never-miss-rock-throws).


#13

Slightly off topic here but I noticed there is a slight delay right before he physically throws it and it locks the location into place during that time. Save your jetpack for right at that moment. He will miss every time. Its actually easier the closer you are standing to him.

@Earthcore, on topic: I really don’t see the no dome strategy working. If he wants to fight then do your thing but I would still personally throw the dome as soon as he tries to run. That way you just way more of his time and keep the pressure on him.


#14

Eh this might be a recent patch thing. Before hand they felt like missiles that acquired a lock on.


#15

Maybe. Its just something I noticed recently. Provided the medic is healing you, you can actually tank damn near every single attack he throws at you as long as you dodge the rock.


#16

Yeah I’ve noticed too now that I think about it that his Rock Throws were being easier to dodge. At first I thought “Hey! Skills are improving!” but now it makes sense…

The Nerfs to Monster flexibility and smoothness might have affected the AI as well.


#17

As a wraith player all I can say here is yes, please Continue with this bot doing policy. I will just abduct or blast an estranged hunter(there will always be one provided you pay attention as monster even against high level teams) and tear the team apart from there. I get you wanting to shake things up and break the “norm” but the dome is the only thing stopping monsters from just flying at you to force seperation than just take off again if it fails before Armor is down as it’s really easy to avoid kalas beam( just focus her first in that comp, she’ll have to stop beaming to cloak even if you don’t finish her) sure would take a little health damage but whatever, strikes for days with no risk of dome totally worth it.

Also if the medic is at All in sight she is dead(Val or caira is the same difference without a shield to help them) so fast.


#18

How are hunters more vulnerable to monster attacks outside a dome? I get that being in a dome encourages hunters to stay close and that without the dome Wraith can abduct Hunters. But if it is possible for the hunters to stay close together and keep up with the monster without using the dome then this team will play almost exactly the same, except it will often keep the dome.
If hunters can get close enough to dome the monster, why can’t they get even closer to use Armor Reducer/ SS effectively?


#19

Im proposing the idea that throwing the dome might not be necessary to keep pressure on the Monster if the Hunters effectively pursue it. I might be wrong, but as Trump from Hearthstone would say, “Science must be done.” I’m going to try to find some people to try it online and I encourage anyone that is interested to do the same.


#20

Just a suggestion, but consider using a trapper with hard cc with offensive teams like this. Soft cc and no shields makes the medic and support easy to get to and down.