We at the Marvello Corps supergroup like to give help where we can. Where as City of Heroes isn?t the most complicated MMORPG out there, it?s always good to have a little bit of information to help those who want it so I have written this guide to one of the most fun parts of both City of Heroes and City of Villains; the travel powers.
Over the 50 levels of both games you are going to do an awful lot of travelling around. You have the choice of 4 different powers that you can take to help you get around the different zones. They each have their benefits, drawbacks and pre-requisite powers that need to be taken before you can access them.
The powers themselves can be accessed at level 14 at the earliest and they are so prevalent in the game it is just assumed that by level 14 you will have one. It?s important to remember this when choosing your early powers, especially if you want to PVP, as the terrain of the higher-level zones (and the distances you have to travel between missions) is much easier and quicker to navigate around with one of these powers. So you want one right?
This means that either at level 6, 8, 10 or 12 you have to make the choice of travel power and pick a pre-requisite. The travel powers themselves are Fly, Teleport, Super Jump and Super Speed. Which one you choose will greatly depend on personal preference or character concept. I chose Fly with my original character because I was new to the game and wanted a flying character. My main preference, however, is for Super Jump as it is very versatile. This doesn?t stop me taking other travel powers though, sometimes for character concept or sometimes because I like a change. Sometimes I like to pick powers based on the pre-requisite power. This is always a good idea if there is a power that you want because it saves you having to access 2 travel pools and gives you a further power selection that otherwise would have been lost to you. As you can see there are many things to consider when deciding on your power.
So here are the powers along with some of their pre-requisite powers and pros and cons.
This seams to be the one power that every new player wants and you can see why. Flying is so ingrained into the concept of a super-powered hero it almost seams wrong to have a hero without it.
Some say it is the safest power and it has certainly been designed as such. With it you can often completely miss mobs. Within missions it is not overly versatile but can be a benefit to the right character. It has a fairly high endurance usage (even though changed recently) and in order to use it with powers you will need to optimise your build. One option is to take Hover (one of the pre-requisite powers) as it has a much lower endurance usage and gives a defence buff as well, all be it a small one. One thing to remember is that it has a suppression effect so if you fire your powers you can not simply fly off, it takes a few seconds before the power comes back.
On the down side Fly is very slow compared to the other travel powers. Recently the option to slot Swift to enhance fight was added but it gives little benefit to a fully slotted Fly. The power its self needs to be slotted. I would recommend at least slotting with 3 flight speed enhancements. If you find you are having problems with endurance a 4th slot with an endurance modifier should solve that.
As far as Pre-requisites go you have a choice of Air Superiority and Hover. Air Superiority is actually quite a nice attack that deals a fare amount of damage and knocks an enemy out of the sky (or off there feet). It?s handy for Defenders and Controllers who don?t get many Melee attacks. I would warn against it for characters who use weapons though as you will have to re-draw your weapon after firing this off.
Hover is like mini-fly. It has a very slow speed but this can be enhanced with Flight speed enhancements to give a fairly good speed for use in battles. It does not suffer from suppression and has an incredibly small defence bonus. It is good for non-melee characters that want to fly above a battle and attack/buff/de-buff and can be useful for avoiding floor traps like Quicksand and Caltraps. This isn?t as good for Melee characters as you tend to stay away from the fight more.
Teleport is fast. In fact it is the fastest power in the game. You will get to everywhere as fast as super-humanly possible and it looks really good and has a very useful pre-requisite power.
It?s a very nice power to have in some respects. In others though, it is sadly lacking. For the benefit of speeding across zones you will have to 6-slot this power. Firstly 3 you need slots for endurance reduction. The endurance usage on Teleport is very high. When you first get this power you often have to take breaks between teleportation, as travel across zones will leave you drained. With the slotting however it is manageable and with Stamina as well, it is even more so. The last 3 slots you can use to boost the powers range (using normal range enhancements) that will speed up your travel.
As far as versatility goes this is probably the least versatile of the travel powers. Its speed is great but changing direction is sometimes a pain. One of the redeeming features of this power though is the ability to teleport away from slowing effects. It is useful in missions even if it takes some thinking outside the box to find some of the uses. Teleporting between ledges in missions is not the easiest thing in the world and if you want a power that is useful in that respect then maybe one of the others would be better for you.
Recall Friend and Teleport Foe are both useful powers as well and really help to make the power a better choice. Recall Friend lets you teleport team mates to you. This can be useful if you are getting people away from trouble or helping people reach missions quicker. It is less useful in PVP but this is where Teleport For really comes into its own. Teleport Foe allows you to teleport and enemy to you. It?s occasionally used as a pulling technique in PVE but it has a large agro range so you often find that the whole mob will follow as well. This is not always the case in PVP though and the power can be used to target individuals and either move them away from one of your allies or move them closer to another one.
If you can afford the slots then this is a nice power to have, even if it takes a little getting used to.
I find this to be the most versatile of the travel powers. It combines a good speed with a decent vertical movement allowing quick crossing of maps as well as useability inside missions for reaching some of the tricky ledges. It also has the benefit of allowing you to control where you are going to land. The only down side to this power is that if you are not careful you may land near or on mobs who can quite easily kill you. It does not take long, however, to learn some of the tricks with Super Jump and it will afford you safe travel around zones with not much practice.
Super Jump is another power that has the suppression effect however and is greatly affected by powers that slow you or remove your ability to jump. It also has a very subtle power effect and it has been known for some people to run out of endurance during a battle because they have left this power on. That is not to say it is heavy on endurance, in fact outside of battle situations you never need to worry about endurance at all. The power is at a premium with just a single Jump enhancement and is actually quite fun to use.
The pre-requisite powers are equally as good as those of Fly. Combat Jumping is to Super Jump as Hover is to Fly. It gives you a very minor defence and can be use as a minor travel power. It is a toggle of course and endurance heavy builds, or those who already run many toggles may have a problem running CJ at the same time as fighting. Jump Kick has a funny animation but is every bit as good as Air Superiority. Once again using this power will have the effect of sheathing any weapons you may be using, but that does not stop it being useful for the right character.
Another thing to consider when taking the Jumping pool is Acrobatics. I have deliberately left out the other powers in the travel pools because on the whole they are not much use and do not have an effect on whether a power is chosen or not. Acrobatics is different. It is a toggle that allows some protection from holds and knock back effects. It?s worthwhile considering if you have a character that does not have a power like that available within your own sets.
This is my favourite power for travelling. It?s a good all rounder.
This is the second most versatile of all the travel powers yet is suffers in one great respect. Unlike all of the other travel powers Super Speed is the only one that forces you to go around objects. The payoff for that is that you have a very speedy power that grants you a limited stealth effect. Travelling with Super Speed is not the easiest thing and you often have to re-evaluate your route half way through but the speed lone means that you still tend to end up at missions before your teammates.
In missions as well this is a useful power. It can help you keep up with your team. It can help you stealth through missions, avoiding those tricky mobs, and it has a very low endurance drain so it is possible to use this power in a fight.
For enhancements, you can just slot one for running speed and you are all done, saving you valuable slots. It is a good idea, however, to get this power with Hurdle from the fitness pool as that will give you some benefits vertically and allow you to jump over some obstacles you would otherwise have to run around.
Super Speed has the benefit of having one of the most useful pre-requisites; hasten. This power speeds up your attacks recharge time. Some see it as a must-have power but I have never thought of it as such. It does however give you great benefits in some fights and is a very worthwhile power to take.
The other option is Flurry. Much like Air Superiority it is a punch, but one that deals damage over time. The animation is a little long for it but you can get a good attack out of it if you are prepared to slot it for damage and accuracy.
Super Speed would be my second choice as a versatile power and again is one that is a lot of fun to use. Sometimes allowing you to see parts of the maps you otherwise would have missed.
And that?s it. As I said before, a lot of this comes down to preference but I hope that this, in some way, is a useful guide to those wanting to know a little more about travelling in City of Heroes and City of Villains.
Short note about the author
Mr Marvellous and Miss Marvellous are the founders of Marvello Corps, a City of Heroes Supergroup. They have been playing since the European release of the game and spend a lot of time trying different builds and power sets. Marvello Corps can be visited on the internet at http://www.marvellousweb.co.uk
where more information can be found about the couple and the characters they play.