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Personal Force Field Questions

retromnavretromnav Posts: 9 Arc User
Ok, so, I've done as much research as I can on PFF builds and such but a few questions still linger:

1. Dodge and PFF - Can you dodge while there's still shielding, ultimately reducing how much the shield takes per dodged-hit?
2. PFF is based off Superstats but are there alternative ways to increasing the amount?
3. PFF Tank starting stats - I've seen a few variations but IMO, I believe Dex/Con/Str would be best.. being melee focused.
4. Any other suggestions?

Comments

  • spookyspectrespookyspectre Posts: 176 Arc User
    edited October 2017
    The Compassion toggle will increase the total hit points on your PFF. Compassion scales with Presense or Recovery. I'm messing with a toon now that uses Compassion and PFF with Recovery as a super stat. You do need a reliable way to proc Compassion stacks though. The Endurance and Recovery specializations have Quick Recovery and Rapid Recovery that provide a very small heal over time that will proc Compassion. That does mean you need to use Endurance or Recovery as your primary Super Stat to use.

    The Arbiter / Enforcer and the Overseer / Administer specializations may buff your PFF hit points as well, but I haven't tested either on PFF. When I tested Overseer's Administer specialization in the past it's numbers for damage, healing and Forces' Protection Field were well below the advertised increases.

    PFF is not the best tanking Defensive Passive. It may actually be the worst, especially for end game content like Cosmics. I'm experimenting to see if I can make a PFF build that can survive end game tanking for the challenge of it. Defiance and Invulnerability are much more reliable for end game tanking.

  • deadman20deadman20 Posts: 1,508 Arc User
    retromnav wrote: »
    Ok, so, I've done as much research as I can on PFF builds and such but a few questions still linger:

    1. Dodge and PFF - Can you dodge while there's still shielding, ultimately reducing how much the shield takes per dodged-hit?
    2. PFF is based off Superstats but are there alternative ways to increasing the amount?
    3. PFF Tank starting stats - I've seen a few variations but IMO, I believe Dex/Con/Str would be best.. being melee focused.
    4. Any other suggestions?

    1. Yes, Dodge does reduce the damage your shield takes.
    2. You can increase the amount of shielding you get via specializations under Sentinel and Sentry, however I believe the value of resistance is more worthwhile than a few extra shielding points.
    3. Dex or Con Primary works when the other is the secondary, perhaps use Dex as your Primary and focus on it as your Form stat, leaving Str out of the equation for an Energy Stat if you so desire.
    4. None that won't turn to pessimism over PFF.​​
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  • avianosavianos Posts: 4,587 Arc User
    edited October 2017
    For more info you can see Cyrone's PFF guide
    But after the TA and cosmic updates he pretty much lost all hope for making PFF variable

    Sidenote: Where is Cyrone those days? Is he ok?​​
    An Introvert guy who use CO to make his characters playable but farms way to much to archieve that
    Playing as EVERYTHING but Superheroes (BUT they are my Heroes) Eternal Silver since 1 February 2011
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  • spinnytopspinnytop Posts: 15,314 Arc User
    avianos said:

    Sidenote: Where is Cyrone those days? Is he ok?​​

    He sometimes logs in on his main account as caliga.
  • theravenforcetheravenforce Posts: 6,624 Arc User
    edited October 2017
    avianos said:

    For more info you can see Cyrone's PFF guide

    But after the TA and cosmic updates he pretty much lost all hope for making PFF variable



    Sidenote: Where is Cyrone those days? Is he ok?​​

    I have tanked in TA (final boss mostly) with PFF.

    Cyrone no longer really plays CO, due to well...I guess what has become of PFF and general dislike of certain things. But I know he checks the forums, so he may comment on here...or not...

    I think, aside from myself, he never used Compassion w/ PFF to tank (but has built PFF w/ Compassion based on a build we shared)

    I personally think Compassion + PFF is trashy, mostly because it just inflates shield max value but does not have any affect on shield regen per 3 sec.

    There are ALOT of issues with PFF, but it is a complex passive to fix, Developers have tried in the past but none of the fixes have stayed because it is a weird passive.

    I still use PFF in all content however.

    1. Dodge and PFF - Can you dodge while there's still shielding, ultimately reducing how much the shield takes per dodged-hit?
    2. PFF is based off Superstats but are there alternative ways to increasing the amount?
    3. PFF Tank starting stats - I've seen a few variations but IMO, I believe Dex/Con/Str would be best.. being melee focused.
    4. Any other suggestions?

    1. Dodge and Avoidance and literally all forms of defense now (as of 2013) work on top of PFF, which means your defense / resistances will factor into PFF.
    2. As previously mentioned: Compassion, shield boosting specs as well as in combat force field applications, but this doesn't really increase PFF per say, just the overall shielding.
    3. STR/CON/REC is also something to consider for defensive purposes, gaining as much resistance as possible for your force field is necessary. PFF is more of, a "Defend-Your-Passive" than a "Defensive Passive" (something I'm quite happy I coined! :tongue:), but still can perform decently in content as long as you take care of it. As it is the only defensive passive in game now which can be removed in combat (whilst you are still alive).
    4. If I say "Don't do it to yourself" you may be discouraged, but that is pretty good advice. But if you want to struggle on, it'll give you good experience to see how hard enemies can hit and will make you build well for other builds which don't use PFF. I still love it because concept and I have had a fun time pushing PFF (without AoPM, Compassion or external shields or Shield boosting specs) to upwards of 11k. I've found though, that returns on the shield regeneration is pretty crap at such a high level of shield (it's like having oodles of HP and very low self healing capacity and resistance, it's not fun).
  • deadman20deadman20 Posts: 1,508 Arc User
    edited October 2017
    Oh, I forgot to note this, but powers which provide additional shielding effects could be useful in sustaining PFF. These would be Dual Blades - Eye of the Storm, Munitions - SMG Burst (Advantage), and other such abilities. There are also powers which provide Resistance via a self-buff like TK Maelstrom or the Ice Ultimate - Frozen Aegis. Those could help immensely. I would also recommend taking two Active Defenses. Force Surge is kinda mandatory for the passive, but look into the choice of Unbreakable or Masterful Dodge as your second.

    Raven's right in that PFF is more of a "Defend-your-passive". You have to do a lot of work to keep it alive as compared to other defensive passives. Even Regen and Lightning Reflexes tend to surpass PFF's survivability, and one of those is based entirely on chance. Still, the concept of relying on an alternate defense to shield and defend yourself is an interesting one. We all just wish it wasn't such a pain to keep up and more competitive with the other options in later content.

    Edit: While most have disagreed with me on this before, I see PFF more as a healthbar extender. One that has different requirements to help sustain it. So much of PFF's defense relies on the player to pick up powers to keep it functioning, hence the "defend your passive" notion. Since that's the case, to me it is much simpler to forego PFF and take fewer and more traditional self-sustaining abilities without a defensive passive and achieve much more reliable results defensively and otherwise.​​
    Post edited by deadman20 on
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  • chuckwolfchuckwolf Posts: 271 Arc User
    edited October 2017
    If you're using PFF as a defensive passive there are a few things that are a must:
    As you asked Dodge and Defense both reduce the amount of damage the PFF itself actually takes.
    Second if you are using it then having Inertial Dampening Field as your defensive toggle is a must.
    The reason for this is simple... It's not the big hits from bosses that do the most damage to PFF but rather lots of little hits from large groups of mobs. IDF prevents most of this damage from ever hitting the PFF.
    Also remember that powers like Protection Field and Field Surge can be used proactively to layer over the PFF and make you immune to damage for up to 20 seconds.

    Oh about defense I recommend using the Guardicator or Wardicator specialization loops with The Best Defense.

    While I personally think PFF isn't a "tanking" passive, as only one player really have done so effectively. It is a very good survivability passive you literally never need heals unless the attack against you bypassed defenses. And is great when combined with IDF as a mob off tank.

    Despite all it's criticism There is a little fact: PFF when it is active prevents 95% of real damage to the health. No other defensive passive can match that. Not Defiance, not Invulnerability, none.
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  • theravenforcetheravenforce Posts: 6,624 Arc User
    edited October 2017
    chuckwolf said:

    Despite all it's criticism There is a little fact: PFF when it is active prevents 95% of real damage to the health. No other defensive passive can match that. Not Defiance, not Invulnerability, none.

    Key phrase there is "WHEN IT IS ACTIVE".

    Whilst in terms of percentage, resisted damage that comes through to your own health bar is within the region of ~5%, PFF's protection (absorbing ~95% of incoming damage) only stretches as far as the maximum shield value and as we all know, PFF can be removed in combat.

    So the protection it grants is inherently limited. I find that other defensive passives, due to the simple fact that they cannot really be removed whilst the character is still alive, beats this by a large margin.

    As I've been saying for years, PFF lacks a good level of damage resistance baked into its shield layer. Unlike other passives which take into consideration your defense and the defense mechanic they grant...PFF only relies on your own defense level.

    I think I will do some more tests to see how PFF performs in endgame content outside of TA and Cosmics, because at this point, as I think someone mentioned on this thread or another, PFF can simply be looked at as a weird health buffer.

    I think that's what most people use it as now.
  • pantagruel01pantagruel01 Posts: 6,297 Arc User
    chuckwolf said:

    Despite all it's criticism There is a little fact: PFF when it is active prevents 95% of real damage to the health. No other defensive passive can match that. Not Defiance, not Invulnerability, none.

    Invulnerability can prevent 95% of damage, just against smaller attacks. In any case, that really doesn't matter. There are two basic numbers that matter for a defensive passive:
    1. How much healing is required to keep you at full health.
    2. How large a buffer do you have between full health and dead.
    PFF at full health is actually not bad on the second. Unfortunately, it completely fails on the first, because no amount of healing can keep you at full field health. A PFF at zero health is very marginally better than no passive at all (it will get a shield tic every 3s, which will cut 100-150 hps off of what's needed, and there's a decent chance you'll get a tic before a big hit, so a slight increase in buffer) but far worse than any other defensive passive.
  • chuckwolfchuckwolf Posts: 271 Arc User

    chuckwolf said:

    Despite all it's criticism There is a little fact: PFF when it is active prevents 95% of real damage to the health. No other defensive passive can match that. Not Defiance, not Invulnerability, none.

    Invulnerability can prevent 95% of damage, just against smaller attacks. In any case, that really doesn't matter. There are two basic numbers that matter for a defensive passive:
    1. How much healing is required to keep you at full health.
    2. How large a buffer do you have between full health and dead.
    PFF at full health is actually not bad on the second. Unfortunately, it completely fails on the first, because no amount of healing can keep you at full field health. A PFF at zero health is very marginally better than no passive at all (it will get a shield tic every 3s, which will cut 100-150 hps off of what's needed, and there's a decent chance you'll get a tic before a big hit, so a slight increase in buffer) but far worse than any other defensive passive.
    Actually if the hit is small enough Invulnerability prevents 100% of damage from small attacks but then again so does the IDF/PFF combo as IDF has the exact same Damage Prevention as Invulnerability just at a lower amount of damage absorbed per hit.

    I fully admit PFF by itself is lacking when it comes to taking lots of hits at once. and as far as big hits go... Blocking, other shields dodge, and defense all layer over PFF it is literally the last layer of defense before your actual health. If you are blocking when hit with a big hit your field and especially your actual health should take very little damage.

    Maybe it's just me being able to "defend my passive" but I've rarely run into a situation where a mob other than a cosmic level was able to do enough damage in a single hit to completely make the PFF shield drop, and most of those have attacks that bypass all defenses anyway.

    As far as healing goes... you don't heal the PFF itself, you heal the actual health underneath. You prevent damage to the PFF or "heal" it by using Field Surge.

    Frankly while I'm probably the biggest advocate other than Cyrone of PFF I frankly wouldn't suggest using it in a build as a defensive unless you're going with a pure force build. Where you can choose things to "defend your passive" if need be.

    However I've very seldom needed to buffer my PFF with things like Field Surge and Protection Field. Usually IDF along with innate dodge and defense provides enough protection to the PFF to keep it at nearly full "heatlh" at all times.

    As I've said before.. it's a survivability passive, not a tanking one.

    But using PFF along with IDF and AoE attacks such as Crushing Wave, Gravitic Ripple and Gravity Driver can make you a great mob off-tank to handle mobs while the real Tank on the team deals with tanking the actual boss.

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  • pantagruel01pantagruel01 Posts: 6,297 Arc User
    chuckwolf said:

    Actually if the hit is small enough Invulnerability prevents 100% of damage from small attacks but then again so does the IDF/PFF combo as IDF has the exact same Damage Prevention as Invulnerability just at a lower amount of damage absorbed per hit.

    Both IDF and Invulnerability are capped at 95%, though this is rarely noticeable (it mostly matters for DoTs, as actually reducing a DoT to zero prevents it from interrupting interacting with objects).
    chuckwolf said:

    Maybe it's just me being able to "defend my passive" but I've rarely run into a situation where a mob other than a cosmic level was able to do enough damage in a single hit to completely make the PFF shield drop, and most of those have attacks that bypass all defenses anyway.

    PFF is fine against the first hit. Where it falls down is against multiple hits. If I equipped PFF on my tank and got bitten by Teleiosaurus for 120,000 damage (blocked), I would take 3,830 damage. On a Defiance tank I would take 8,124 damage. However, on the second bite (3s later), I would take 12,130 with PFF.
    chuckwolf said:

    As far as healing goes... you don't heal the PFF itself, you heal the actual health underneath. You prevent damage to the PFF or "heal" it by using Field Surge.

    Anything that can prevent damage to PFF can also prevent damage to other passives, and Field Surge is a horrible active defense. For comparison:
    Field Surge r3 on PFF tank (+100% base damage resistance): +4,288 shield, +4,929 PFF healing, net +14,146 eHP.
    Resurgence r2 on Defiance tank (+100% base damage resistance, +19%/stack, 14k hp): +10,500 hp, net +32,970 eHP.
    chuckwolf said:

    Where you can choose things to "defend your passive" if need be.

    If you're gonna defend your passive, might as well just use an offensive passive and defend that instead.
  • roughbearmattachroughbearmattach Posts: 4,784 Arc User
    Quick note, blue and yellow boosts (energy and defense) also heal your PFF. You can get a significant benefit from using those boost enhancers, since many, many more boosts will drop, helping you up your PFF.
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  • deadman20deadman20 Posts: 1,508 Arc User
    Quick note, blue and yellow boosts (energy and defense) also heal your PFF. You can get a significant benefit from using those boost enhancers, since many, many more boosts will drop, helping you up your PFF.

    The only problem with this part is that they don't drop often enough to help sustain PFF when it needs it the most. i.e. After all the adds are dead or at 2/3 or 1/3 of a Cosmic's health instead of all the time. Still a useful note to keep in mind when they do pop up when you need them.

    I honestly can't wait for a Force Powerset revamp that includes a PFF rework. I always loved the idea of having a personal shield, just hate how inefficient it always feels.​​
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  • gbjohngbjohn Posts: 9 Arc User
    Forgive me if this has been suggested, but would it be a simple fix for PFF if things like Wall of Bullets or Mental Block *repaired* PFF instead of just slapping an extra shield on top of it? Or would that cause it to be overpowered?
    This still wouldn't make it viable for all builds, but I'd love to see it be viable for at least some.
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