Is Maeve a REAL killer?
Maeve is probably my favourite character in the game, she is very charismatic and funny. But I genuinely don't get why developpers name her "killer". She's just too weak for that. From all her three abilities only ONE does gamage (and decent one, but still). Her auto-attacks don't do big damage like how Daemon can, for example. So...maybe her role affiliation should be changed? Otherwise, she needs to be reworked it terms of her damage.
In terms of damage output I suppose she isn't consistently putting up the same numbers as a Gizmo or Nidhoggr would usually (I would say Daemon as well but there's viable ways to use him without massive damage output e.g. stealth mod setup, following healers, similar role as Cass). Speaking of Cass, she doesn't consistently produce massive damage numbers either but still fulfils the role of a competent Assassin.
She certainly doesn't fill the role of Heavy or Support so Assassin seems fitting to me. Think of it as a role inside a role. She's an assassin but not in the same way as the others. Cage is one of the best abilities in the game in my opinion and she has great survivability with self heals and temporary invisibility/invulnerability. She's also unique in that her ability cooldowns have the possibility of resetting so depending on how well you play/coordinate, you can make the most of more damage output that way
I personally think she's one of the strongest characters in the game from the 4-5 hours I put into her during the Alpha.
Only problem I have with her is that she shares the name with a character from Netflix's Sex Education and they couldn't be more juxtaposing
@Terrence1324 She's no different to any of the other characters in that respect. There's not a single ability in the game that can wipe out any of the characters in one shot/with relative speed in a 1v1. The team aspect is so vital.
Whilst the other Assassins have additional damage output abilities or combo variations they can use, Maeve has different abilities that synergise with the team/other characters' abilities to aid them with more damage output e.g. Cage.
I would agree that despite having some cool and unique abilities, she's one of the characters that feels the least intuitive to play because, in my opinion, she's rather one-dimensional with little skill ceiling. Cage, Siphon, Vanish...Cage, Siphon, Vanish...Cage, Siphon, Vanish...repeat.
Unless you're steamrolling with Schadenfreude there's not much variety in her play-style and I don't think I'm being too ignorant in saying that? I'm really surprised she's rated 3/3 in difficulty (x). Making the most of Schadenfreude by getting your teammates to leave enemies on low HP for you to finish off in order to maximise value on the next target is really as deep as her technicalities get from my experience so far. I put a decent amount of time in her too.
I think she's strong but I personally don't think she's engaging enough to be a main pick where hours would be put into learning her. I've already been shouted at for mentioning this too many times on here but I think a significant part of that is because the animation/particles/audio/general feel of her Basic Attack and Siphon ability is so ineffective that I'd rather play a character like El Bastardo where I'm hacking and slashing through enemies with sharp machetes instead of embodying The Tickle Monster through Maeve. That's rambling into personal preference but I think it's a fairly objective statement to point out comparisons between the feel of certain abilities and the effect it has on overall character engagement/depth.
(x) Edit - I seem to remember the characters' difficulties being updated late in the Alpha in-game, just checked the Fighters page and it doesn't match what was in game. Maybe I'm not recalling correctly, or the difficulty on the Fighters page on the website was never updated to match, or they've been re-updated since the Alpha?
I'll be making videos about Bleeding Edge and will at some point get around to talking about Maeve in-depth, but you guys were having such an interesting conversation I had to jump in. It's mostly speculation at this point anyway until we get to play some more.
IMO Gizmo and Maeve can be listed as the ranged carries of the game, the kind of characters you target as soon as you can. Of course, they don't quite have the ability to jump in and disrupt an entire fight like El Bastardo and Nidhoggr can, but they're very reliable in their damage output if you play them right.
For Maeve, you'll generally want mods that empower your Life Siphon. There's also a mod that boosts her damage per kill (up to a max and losing stacks of it on death) which would boost her Life Siphon even further. Improving the duration of Vanish or other mods may be nice, but at least 1 or 2 need to go into Life Siphon as it's her best consistent damage AND healing for herself. If you're relying on her basic attack at all you're probably doing it wrong. This allows her to better roam the field and make picks once characters start to get low. The main thing you have to watch out for is any CC that can disrupt your channelling, but other than that you're pretty safe to make trades. Peek-a-Brew also allowed me to rack up kills really easily during alpha.
Thanks to her passive, she can Vanish into the fight to get a better position to Cage and Life Siphon if she thinks she can guarantee the kill, then use Vanish to get back out. In other words, she has more mobility than Gizmo even if she has less damage potential, she also has more utility and healing than Cass who can fulfill a similar role. 1v1 I was able to basically take down anyone but El Bastardo who can just run you down. Nidhoggr can out-damage her for sure, but his specials are just too easy to dodge so long as you don't let him get right in your face (His supers on the other hand, will outright screw you over).
Her real counters seem to be characters like Miko who can counter her Life Siphon with TWO of her specials and Kulev/Gizmo since they're strong zoners with deployables that she can't easily deal with. I think the difficulty rating on her character really comes from her needing to consistently roam and make picks as well as anticipate and respond to specific abilities. She's not too useful if you're standing in one place basically, though using Cage to peel for your team will be pretty important so make sure to be around to help them.
That's the real counter with Maeve - CC abilities. I think even the standard dodge hurts her more than many characters.
With her Siphon being her only source of significant damage output, it's essential you get the most out of it. Despite being a "Ranged" character, her range isn't that considerable really. The high ground surrounding the Capture Points on all of the maps I can think of right now are out of range for her to sit on top relatively unchallenged and Siphon downwards directly onto the point where you'd assume most of the action is taking place. So she's got to get in and amongst the fight regardless of the fact she's Ranged. Which means she herself is then in constant range of CC abilities. Even characters' basic attacks will stun you out of Siphon.
If you do lock onto a Melee character with your Siphon at a range where they can't hit you with basic attacks, they can dodge away from you, which is likely to be enough of a distance where it breaks your Siphon, or dodge into you, where they are then at a range to hit you with basic attacks producing the same result.
Once that Siphon is broken and you're being pressured, you've got no chance of out-damaging even Support characters like Miko in a 1v1, so you're sort of forced into Vanishing away. I found a lot of times when in these positions, it's quite predictable where you're going to reappear from your Vanish as it's quite short and you move about the same speed as what her character would suggest in real life, Grandma speed So if the player chooses to continue pursuing you and predict where you'll end up out of your Vanish, you're then in a position without Vanish which is ultimately worse in a 1v1 because of its massive cooldown and the loss of any mobility, and the only way out is by out-damaging which we've determined is not her strong point!
So what I'm getting at is, there's never any harm in setting up mods around more damage output, especially as (like we've discussed) she isn't consistently putting up high damage numbers like other picks in the same role would. But I do think there's more potential in mod builds focusing on increasing her attack distances and vanish duration, thus reducing her counter danger. More Siphon/Basic Attack distance = the further back you can be in a fight and the decrease in chance of Siphon breaking by someone dodging away. Higher Vanish duration = more chance of running to safety/back to your teammates and the less predictable your grand reappearance will be. I feel like more damage doesn't necessarily solve her counter problems especially when she doesn't rely on damage output to be effective. If you need more damage, your first thought isn't to pick a Maeve for example, more like a Gizmo.
However, that's the beauty of the mods I guess. From my experience I have yet to run into a mod that was ridiculously overpowered and was a must-pick in any setup (except maybe Daemon's infinite invisibility, feels weird without it once you've used it). You can mix n match them based on personal preference, play-style, the characters you're up against etc.
In terms of her actual basics, I think she's one of the easiest and most accessible characters to pick up hence why I think the 3/3 difficulty was a stretch. I'm not denying that you've got to play her smart in order to get the most out of her potential but that goes with every character beyond the basics. Difficulty ratings are usually aimed towards newer players struggling to choose their first picks I've always assumed? Naturally they'd go for the 1/3 to learn how the game plays first. I think new players would get plenty of success out of her without needing to learn intricate combos and traversal techniques.
The thing is with these conversations, you can debunk everything I've just said by just mentioning the vital team aspect. You're being pressured by an El Bastardo and your Vanish is on cooldown? Let your team know and get them to pressure the El Bastardo off you. Whilst these specific 1v1 situations I've mentioned do exist, the most likely counter to those situations is to communicate with your team.
I can't argue about the Vanish mod really. I think becoming better at the game will make it easier to use on a shorter cooldown to get away... but the same could be said for the enemies who know you're going to use it. That mod for increasing its duration by 2s feels massive when you take it off.
As for cancelling her siphon though, I wouldn't classify hit stuns the same way as other CC's. I didn't get a lot of chance to play the game, but from my initial impression channelling greatly increases your resistance to hit stuns kind of like what Heavy's have. So usually only the last hit of the combo would break the siphon and by that point you've done plenty of damage and healed from it as well. I might be wrong, but that was what I figured out from the few games I played in alpha.
So if you're fighting Buttercup, as long as you dodge her Yank, you can basically get the full siphon off with the cage combo by the time you get cancelled. So the skill comes with dodging her yank. Miko is such a problem because not only is stasis hard CC, her kinetic shield blocks beams like life siphon.
So... I'm probably going to do the mod sets:
Life Siphon Damage+, Life Siphon Healing+, On-kill Damage Scaling (for outright damage)
Life Siphon Damage+, Life Siphon Healing+, Vanish Duration+ (for maneuverability and teamwork)