The Daily Grind: Which MMO has the best twist on the archer class?

    
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The Daily Grind: Which MMO has the best twist on the archer class?

Call ’em Archers, call ’em Rangers, call ’em Katnisses — whatever the designation, they’re the ones who stand there with a bow looking all poster-worthy until the heavy cavalry rides them down and slaughters them on the spot.

Yes, we’ve certainly seen plenty of people with long sticks shooting smaller, pointy sticks into bad guys over the years. But not all Archer classes are created equal. Once in a while, dev teams actually put a little thought into how to make them unique or stand out from the rest of the pack. Once in a while, mind you.

In your experience, which MMO has the best twist on the boilerplate Archer class?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!

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MilitiaMasterV
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MilitiaMasterV

Depends what you’re going for.

LOTRO had the literal Legolas clones…where you could long range and ‘rain of arrows’ a spot, which was perfect for group fighting because you could just sit back and drop loads of arrows into a spot or focus single target, depending what you wanted to do. Later they changed it depending on ‘specialization’…you can pick or choose the highly mobile close combat version, the 40M+ range version, or one other variation.

Rift had some…weird versions of it, that felt very strange to play and got throw-able turrets/flamethrowers. (When I was playing, it was one of the only character builds you’d want around, because they could literally pull the whole rift and just kite and burn the whole group down.) Don’t remember what it was called. Didn’t really try other variations of it on there either.

WoW had the hunter that could be abusive to the party (Pull aggro and ‘misdirect’ and aim aggro at a party member who couldn’t handle it…and then ‘feign death’ when they were dead and the party was collapsing and they were coming for you instead)…but were great kiters and could pretty much solo a lot of things. Or if you wanted the big pets, you could go that route. I don’t know how it’s changed since Cata, and I frankly don’t care as I boycott the company.

ESO has a few build ideas you can try, I personally went the ‘lock the group in place’/bow skills slow them down/arrow spray/while rain of arrows idea…and basically didn’t even have a use for the pet…because I stay mobile as a ranger, and if they are getting close to me, I’m doing something wrong…

GW2 had a unique take on them…’rangers’, I vaguely enjoyed that one, but I didn’t care for the pet aspect and the shoddy AI pathing that would lead a whole group to you if you jumped off somewhere and didn’t dismiss pet…one reason I’m no fan of pet classes. Preferred the Engineer with the flamethrower. Oh boy I was a ‘god’ with that character…almost never died and LOVED burning things down with it…but it required maintaining a close but not too close distance which was a tad hard at times with the control schemes on there and the recovering from dodge rolls thing. (ASURAN ENGINEER WITH FLOPPY EARS THAT MOVE ON JUMPS/JIGGLES/DODGES GO!)

FFXIV had, well, something(Bards?). It wasn’t very impressive. It upgraded into Machinist…which wasn’t…much better IMO. That one hurt to level up/play, at least up till top end. Didn’t much care for any of them on there but I’m a glutton for punishment and maxed every job…at least to before they upgraded the game.

Path of Exile had some unique takes on it. Flaming/exploding arrows, homing arrows, all sorts of variables…personally I loved the class on there, but I couldn’t get to where I wanted on the skill tree fast enough usually. Kind of require piercing skill/gem too, so it goes through your target and keeps hitting others, and I often use ‘arrow spread’ idea, so you can just fire a whole spread and hit everything in a direction…then tack on life/mana leech too, so you fire and keep on going…

I’ve played so very many of these games…that’s just a short sample…I can’t even remember where the ‘best’ ones I found were…usually a highly mobile, trap throwing close combat version has the best feel for me personally, but not everyone likes that style. And I’m not a huge fan of the sit back and pump them full of arrows idea, though I can enjoy it at times…I prefer to be up in the thick of it, so archers aren’t my normal style, just something I don’t mind experimenting with at times…

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SmiteDoctor

Survival Hunters in WoW?

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Utakata

1) They come with gun options and pets in WoW?

2) Nothing special in TERA though, other than they have a “machine gun” mode. o.O

Celestia
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Celestia

I loved all three variations of Dark Age of Camelot’s archer classes.

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Schlag Sweetleaf

Archery level: 48
Name: Rapid Fire 8
Target: Enemy
Cast/Duration/Recast: 3.0s/0/0s
Range/Radius: 2100 range
Effect: 47 damage (Slash)
Cost: 4% Fatigue

nice shot man.gif
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Utakata

#PinCushion

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Bruno Brito

47 damage (Slash)

wat

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Schlag Sweetleaf
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Bruno Brito

i mean, why is bow damage classified as a slash? It’s puncture/piercing. Waaaaat

MilitiaMasterV
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MilitiaMasterV

Arrowheads are often shaped to slice flesh as they go in, so while they are effectively used as a ‘puncture/piercing’ weapon, they are ‘slashing’ their way in as they go in with the kinetic force. Some people also barb the back, so it once again slashes and TEARS on the way back out.

As for why games register it as such, I forget the reasoning behind it but it was ‘codified’ in old DnD books somewhere…long before many of these games existed, and most MMO’s use basics taken from DnD style of play to create their worlds.

I apologize if you didn’t want a big explanation and were just joking around…

Turing fail
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Turing fail

Gimli: “That only counts as one!”

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Bryan Cole

Rift probably because of the sheer amount of “subclassing” you can combine. Bard is my favorite in that subset. I do like RiftDancer, I think that’s what it’s called, basically the tanky subset. Marksman was a lot of fun for PVP, lots of pew pew and burst damage.

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Crowe

Bard was so much fun in the early years.

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jealouspirate

I like Archers but not pet classes. LOTRO’s hunter is nice because it doesn’t use a pet, and it has a lot of that “ranger/tracker/woodsman” flavour with things like the camp/travel system.

Bree Royce
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Bree Royce

I love love love archer classes. But usually archers are turned into pet classes, which tend to be less fun for me. And ironically, my two main MMOs aren’t much for archery (one is sci-fi and doesn’t have archers, and in the other the archery sets are extremely weak).

Buuuut if I had to single one out that nobody else is likely to mention, it’s gonna be my archer in Ultima Online. She runs a pretty odd build, with 120 archery, 100 bushido, 110 tactics, 120 music, 120 discordance, and the rest split between chivalry and meditation. (I make the rest up with gear.) I adore this character. It’s a lot of running and jousting and potions since I don’t have healing or peace, but my “disco archer” packs a serious punch with all the buffs and debuffs.

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Life_Isnt_Just_Dank_Memes

Hawkeye in Marvel Heroes. He had some really cool gadgets.

I liked the Ranger spirits in GW1. I thought they added an interesting druid feel to the class and you could do some very odd team builds with them for clearing dungeons in EotN where you could get really creative.

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Oleg Chebeneev

As much as I love hunter in WoW (its been my main), I’d say Lost Ark. There is Devil Hunter class who can shoot 3 different weapons: double pistols, shotgun and sniper rifle. YOu switch between them any time, and all of them have their own pros and cons. Like shotgun does massive aoe dmg in close range, and sniper rifle hits single target hard from afar.

And thats only one of 4 “hunter” classes in this game. There are also Hawkeye (traditional bow archer), Blaster (with huge hand canon) and Scouter (soldier with assault rifle and drones)

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Loopy

I always enjoyed Age of Conan version of the ranger. Satisfying pew pew sound effects, setting up traps, it was always good times.

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wratts

I liked the AOC archer at release, when you could mix traps and stealth and had standard abilities. The rework they did where any trap takes you out of stealth, and you were doing “auto-combos” which basically amounted to “high attack, low attack, finisher” for the rest of the game I thought kind of killed it