Gunny's Survival Mode Guide - Oan Sciencells

Discussion in 'Oracle’s Database (Guides)' started by Gunny, Jul 3, 2014.

  1. Gunny New Player

    These are updated set-ups for survival mode.

    NOTE: Some aspects of these group set-ups and executions are NOT for everyone! There are multiple ways to skin a cat with these rounds, but these I found were the easiest, fastest, and safest tactics and setups.

    WARNING!!! - These strategies were my latest attempts and were smooth, safe, and fast. However, they also heavily relied on all eight players knowing every detail possible about their power, role, and general knowledge and are absolutely top-notch players widely regarded for their quality play. All eight players were communicating at all times to make these setups possible, and surely will fail otherwise.

    That said, attempt these with that these points in mind. Adjustments can easily be made (the purpose of why I setup this way), and following these setups will allow you to progress as fast as possible or as safe as possible - whichever works best for you. DO NOT expect to try these with massive success from PUG's.


    These are some of the things your group will want to have to run these setups. Some are absolutely essential, where others can possibly be your life-saver but often just another option... and some are just a small advantage.


    Role-Flexible players - No, this does not mean having 4-5 power tokens in your inventory. You want players that can both DPS and use their role. You can have ONE troll, ONE healer, and ONE tank be purely those roles, but the other 5 players should be able to both DPS and use their support role.


    Armories - These are essential for immediate emergency role changes in the event a group member is lost or is otherwise overburdened with their role. You do NOT need to purchase any armories to use this option - you can simply set up the role you are not using in your free armory, and then respec yourself to set up the role you will be using to begin with. Multiple armories are, however, a distinct advantage because sometimes you may need to switch roles more than once.


    Overall Group Powersets - This one can be a life-saver, or be useless depending on what happens. DPS should NOT be necessarily the best burning powers in the game, but ideally your overall group powersets should be based upon the following:

    You will want 3 Tank powersets in your group.
    You will want 3 Healer powersets in your group.
    You will want 2 Troll powersets in your group.

    Small deviations can be made from this power setup. Probably the least needed powerset here is the 3rd healer powerset - you can very much get by with a 4th tank or a 3rd controller instead. However, aiming for this will help with Role-flexibility to make sure you can not only have the widest range of safety nets available, and the ability to keep fighting after losing 1 or even 2 players.


    Communication - This should never be a quiet attempt. Coordinating pickups, role changes, supply drops, positioning, and tactics are life-and-death situations you cant just type out. Even with the safest tactics, poor communication can result in lost players - which will cut your run short very easily. I learned this one first-hand on our USPS first-appearance to Round 7 run.


    Gear/SP -- Not as important as people really think, but every advantage you can get helps. In perfect runs through survival mode though - where every best action every player can take at all times is taken - the only thing that will ultimately prevent your advance through a round is Statistical barriers. Im not saying that a low CR player cannot reach something like Round 7, but I CAN say that a group with less than 106CR's will be incurring additional challenges - and can ultimately set their maximum potential round they can reach shorter just by their statistics.


    Boss mechanic knowledge -- This is invaluable to have - by far the most important aspect to how effective you are in Survival Mode. Improper group formations or tactics will result in as many as 6 people dying from one attack - some of them happen with few tells or the ability to avoid them. And yes, every boss is fought differently.


    Repair Bots -- Sad to say, these are required for most groups as well after a certain point. Especially your first few trips to the deep depths of Survival Mode, you will find that these will be essential at certain points - I've even ran into points where these would be popped mid-boss fight and would repair one player at a time. There's plenty out there in the game, and they are not necessary unless you are really quite far into your run.


    PS3 VS PS4 -- Obviously, PS4 players have far less of a hassle than PS3 players. HOWEVER, for Survival Mode specifically, PS3 is very much able to run this instance without freezing. Cleaning out your memory by deleting excess saves from other games, wired internet connections, and emptying your mailbox (trust me, these messages can build up and take a TON of memory) will help minimize DC's and freezes.

    A hard-reset (Exiting the entire game, not just a character logout) before entering survival mode will help too. Sadly, you cannot expect to play the game for 3-4 hours continuous, then go into survival mode thinking a freeze might not happen.

    I run a PS3, it sucks, but I have yet to freeze or suffer connection problems in Survival Mode outside of enemies taking 2-3 seconds to appear at the beginning of a wave. (Knock on wood!)


    Single-Tank mentality -- This just is a poor attitude to have for survival mode. This tactic was always the way to go from shortly after the game was launched - until now. Survival mode is best done with two tanks at the ready. Using just one tank, while it is possible, removes most of your safety nets for a fight in the event the tank falls. These bosses do significant damage, and one slight tank slip-up CAN result in that tank dropping - even on the adds.

    If you want to realistically advance through survival mode with as little headaches as possible for everyone, abandon this very long-tradition mentality. At the very least, you will want AT LEAST one tank and one DPS that is able to switch to a fully-functional tank.
    • Like x 13
  2. Gunny New Player

    Boss Fights (1 -5)

    These boss fights are for Heroes and Villains alike. Remember, multiple ways to approach each, these are just how I found them easiest. Heres my starting setup:

    DPS (tank power)
    DPS (healer power)
    DPS (tank power - healer would be better here, but we've used tank due to tank-heavy league ranks)
    DPS (troll power)
    Tank (DPS capable)
    Tank (DPS capable)

    All tank powers were rage or ice, though earth is very much acceptable to use. Sorry fire :( Tanks REALLY want single-target agro moves to separate bosses easier.

    Solo Trolling this will be far easier with every player holding a supply drop. Only use them when the controller tells you to.


    Round 1 - Ursa/Metallo

    These can be tough bosses if they are close to one another. Ursa pulls very commonly, and metallo will use AoE attacks around himself and will cause massive damage.

    These bosses become MUCH easier by separating them. Ursa on one side of the room, Metallo on the other. Kill them one at a time. 4DPS-2TANK-1HEAL-1TROLL (4-2-1-1) Set-up here. I'd target Ursa first, but either is fine.


    Round 2 - Bruno Manheim/Vice

    These can be tanked together to allow both to be burned. Both will charge at the group, but Vice's charge only causes a knockback. Bruno, however, will use deadly attacks with those charges. Spreading out can minimize risks with this boss, but simply looking out for Bruno should get you to come away with the win. I'd drop Bruno first, although both bosses should take most attacks. 4-2-1-1 here.


    Round 3 - Guy Gardner/Bleez

    Similar to Round 2. These two bosses can also be held together to maximize damage. Both will break off to launch attacks at the group. Both will do deadly attacks. 4-2-1-1 here. I'd say target Bleez first, but either is fine.


    Round 4 - Gorilla Grodd/Atrocitus

    Gorilla Grodd's stomp will cause quite some damage. Tanks should try to avoid taking this damage.

    Both Gorilla Grodd and Atrocitus will break off and launch attacks at the group. Atrocitus is very slow-moving. Gorilla grodd is faster though, and the stomp he does has him jump 5 times, which makes pick-ups for this potentially difficult. I'd say target him first. 4-2-1-1 here.


    Round 5 - General Fabricant/Evil Star

    This round has quite a few mechanics to it. I'll describe each, then provide a solution.

    General Fabricant uses a grenade attack, which will drop several members in the group if left unchecked. The damage from these attacks DO split though, and can be screen-blocked by tanks.

    Evil Star is accompanied by three starlings that cannot be killed. However, should a starling be near Evil Star, he can receive a 30% damage buff for each starling near him - which does stack.

    My tactic for this fight is allowing the tanks to lure both bosses to a corner of the map. Once there, the rest of the group will attack - in a tight group. The tanks will then stand between General Fabricant and Evil Star and the group. This way, Evil star cannot assault the close-together group, General Fabricant's grenades will be screen-blocked by the tank in front of him, and any grenades that do make it to the group split damage and are heal-able. Starlings are simply knocked back by tanks whenever possible. If a starling attacks the group, a troll can stun it, and a tank can pull it back into the fight, then knock it back again.

    Other than tanks repositioning to stay between the group and the bosses, little movement is required in this fight. A 4-2-1-1 here. Focus firing either boss is fine, but the damage can split to starlings, so pick your attacks accordingly if possible to maximize boss damage.

    I used a 4-2-1-1 here.


    Rounds 6 (HERO ONLY) - Lyssa Drak/DeathStroke

    Lyssa Drak and Deathstroke.... or basically Lyssa Drak.

    Lyssa Drak is a powerhouse in this fight. She is very quick and has several devastating attacks that all can cause serious havoc for a group - even by herself. Deathstroke, although a bit tricky to tank due to counters, is by no means the same threat Lyssa poses.

    Lyssa Drak will break from the tank and will whiplash the group - which can be quite difficult to dodge, and certainly not much of a time window in there to do it. Furthermore, she loves using her handclap spike's move that is an AoE that follows this whiplash - which is very well known for killing players on pick-up duty. To make matters worse, she will use a ranged ability that kills anyone in a straight line - this can be a raid wiper if you're not careful.

    Deathstroke.... a pain to counter, but a lame duck otherwise.

    Try this fight by sending a tank off to solo Lyssa across the map. This way, she cant do what she loves most - terrorize nontanks - while the rest of your group can pile on that ugly duckling Deathstroke. Only thing to watch out for is if the tank on Lyssa dies, you'll need a tank to tag Lyssa, and a player to beeline over for the pickup. Once that's done, the non-tanks can back off from the fight, wait for the tanks to re-position the bosses away from each other, and resume Deathstrokes beating.

    Once Deathstroke dies, you group can begin on Lyssa using a large semicircle formation at the farthest range possible away from her - this maximizes your reaction time to her tank breakoffs. Keep an eye out for pickups, and keep an eye on people doing those pickups - Lyssa can easily get a few players knocked out of the run by herself due to killing revivers.

    Lyssa is still a pain by herself, but enough communication, pick-ups, and maintaining your position... she'll go down.

    Round 7 (HERO ONLY) - Black Adam/Hank Henshaw

    Since Black Adams big damage adjustment, this fight has really had some changes.

    Hank does his normal Assault & Battery deal - Brawling combo the farthest player occasionally. Black Adam, he'll use a hand clap shazam, a swoop attack that will drop a player, and also the dreaded pulse beam. HOWEVER, if the tank keeps as close as possible to Black Adam, he'll rarely use pulse beam.

    This fight is done pretty much by leaving a tank to solo Black Adam, while eliminating hank from the equation. Once hank dies, finishing Black Adam is not going to be much different.

    Used a 4-2-1-1 here, although at this point, a second healer or second troll isn't a bad idea

    Round 8+ Adds

    Starting with this round and every round after, adds are no longer controllable at our current dominance values. This really makes these adds do much more damage to tanks. A third tank at this point of the game is advised.

    Round 8 (HERO ONLY) - Amon Sur/Parasite

    These guys are somewhat of a letdown really. Round 7 is debatably harder.

    Amon Sur is definitely tricky for tanks. He will do blockbreakers with pistols and follow up with a crushing ram... that can easily drop tanks not countering or failing to block the ram.

    Parasite has a pull-in move and he also self-heals himself. Thankfully, nearly all of parasites moves can be countered by lunge though. Parasite DOES however, have a DoT that is probably best to let the healer know about it so he can burst heal you accordingly.

    This round is done with a solo tank on Parasite, while the group piles Amon Sur. Once he dies, Parasite really is not that hard. Drop a healing debuff on Parasite and be sure to counter his healing move, and he'll go down pretty easily.

    Round 9 (HERO ONLY) - Arkillo/Sinestro

    Not yet a successful pass on these bosses yet. However, there was a run that the group had Arkillo at less than 20% life and sinestro just over 50% health and still going strong - until someone felt the need to spam the tanks with chat invites which led to the demise of the group.

    Arkillo and Sinestro at this point of the game both hit like two 20-car trains colliding with each other. There isn't a tank that can survive the brutal beating these two bosses dish out over a sustainable period of time.

    The tactic used was to actually tank both of these together with a usual tank-and-spank setup oddly enough. These bosses both can break off the tank, but they are not quick and can easily be avoided by non-tanks.

    The difficult portion of this fight relies on the tanks. The tanks need to survive as long as possible, and "When" your tanks do fall (trust me, they will), they need to be working in tandem so that both bosses can be tagged AND be able to survive as the group rallies the fallen tank and the tank recovers. This takes a few moments, and these bosses WILL make you work for those precious moments. Excellent shield timing, supercharges, and countering are an absolute must because these bosses WILL drop you faster than a bowling ball thrown into a lake.

    This round IS winnable believe it or not, its just a matter of who will do it first. Will it be you?
    • Like x 15
  3. TheLoneLantern New Player

    This should be helpful for those trying to improve on their league runs. I have to ask though, why are you so adamant on dual-tanking Grodd and Atrocitus? We can solo tank them with ease. I suggest you atleast try it once to see if it's beneficial.

    Edit: Also, we think there might be an exploit in the round 2 boss fight. Gonna verify with the devs first however.
  4. Gunny New Player

    Solo-tanking, while very do-able for rounds 2-4, really puts the pressure on the one tank. Sure, many tanks certainly have the capabilities (and then some) to solo tank the fight, but the fact of the matter is that if an error happens by a tank at ANY TIME in survival mode, that tank could drop quite easily.

    Having no tanks alive and two bosses freely able to openly attack the group will never bode well because they can then pick off targets individually. Its just a safety net I really like to have, and increasing our damage by around 25% by using a 5th DPS instead of a second tank isn't worth it in our opinion.

    I originally tried survival mode solo tanking, and found two tanks to be very beneficial in every fight - and at least once in each fight during our several round 7 visits, I found ourselves really needing that safety net. Asking one tank to complete these fights without mistakes can be a rough expectation. Round 4's boss is reached at a minimum of 45 minutes in the run, and to expect him to play flawless for 30 more by himself with extreme consequences if he falls... you lose a ton of safety for a very small boost to your group DPS.
    • Like x 3
  5. D3vi1 Dedicated Player

    I think because you're using 4-2-1-1, its perfectly fine to double tank it. That's 4 dps. Still a good burn. Being safe with a high burn is still great
  6. Gunny New Player

    Seems a bit strange how harmless Vice is to the group...
    • Like x 1
  7. TheLoneLantern New Player

    Yes, i dont want to expand on the discussion, because if it is determined to be an exploit, well we're not allowed to talk about it.
  8. Gunny New Player

    Understand. End of discussion.

    In any case, if anyone else has any questions, regarding anything in Rounds 1-6, feel free to ask. I will mention again that I will not be discussing anything regarding Round 7 in here for obvious reasons (until we are successful).
  9. ForumJunky New Player

    We do a 4-1-1-2
    4 DPS 1 tank 1 heal 2 trolls From rounds 2-5
    Round 1 wave we do 4-1-1-2 but round 1 bosses we split up so 3-2-1-2

    Round 6 I can understand why you use 1 troll and the rotations on Supply Drops are must, I still fell like have 2-2-2-2 is the safe way to to for the leagues that are struggling Herr and there on it.
    Great Thread Gunny
    As regards to Round 7 your guys Clown Boxes were kinda funny but I don't think its gunna work.
    I was thinking 3Heal 2 tanks 2 trolls 1 DPS or 1 troll 2 DSP
  10. BRITTENY Dedicated Player

    It did work. There were other factors that lead us to wipe on Round 7.
    • Like x 1
  11. ForumJunky New Player

    Was the tanks using clown box as well?
  12. BRITTENY Dedicated Player

    The tanks were the only ones using it.
  13. Gunny New Player

    For Round 6, we really didn't feel that threatened really with our tactics. As far as Lyssa goes, we generally just need more eyes and coordination on the pick-ups. More supports really wont help for her because of how she attacks, simply minimizing casualties due to positioning and getting the pick-ups works very well. On occasion though, lyssa likes to drop a player doing a pick-up, so often times we need to send two more to get those two downs - which really can hurt the group if one of those two get hit as well.

    Last night's run I watched, we lost Britteny during Round 6 due to this kind of mix-up. Theres not much we can do about it because lyssa wont respond immediately to tanks moving her usually, and her following up her ranged attacks with hand claps really makes pick-ups rather difficult.

    Good to see you also can use 4 DPS though for rounds 2-5. If the tank goes down though, I'd hate to see you guys running around like chickens with your heads cut off to get him up - followed by 2-3 more picks after that.
  14. Gunny New Player

    Although most may not run solo troll, solo heal for survival mode, following our setup is pretty much ideal for anyone - because the setup will allow for the group to go to extremes and go 3 Tank, 3 Heal, 2 Troll if they feel the need to.... to something as fast as our 4-DPS run. There really isn't anything you cant do with that setup, which is why we aim for those setups.

    Our execution is probably something plenty may poke sticks at, but the preparation and group setups are certainly across-the-board ideals for anyone looking to reach as far into Survival Mode as possible.
    • Like x 1
  15. Sage-Rapha Steadfast Player

    Ah, I see you incorporate hybrids.
  16. Pandora Demon New Player

    It's funny, he's horrible to low level groups in regular oan.
  17. Gunny New Player

    People fixed on only one of their two roles really can inhibit flexibility for groups in all content.

    Select Few will never recruit a player that only plays DPS, and we frequently expect any player to assume either of their two roles in any content. Hybrids are VERY advantageous in survival mode, and many of our Round 7 appearances happened on the backs of one or more people assuming a role of a knocked out player.
    • Like x 4
  18. Sage-Rapha Steadfast Player

    I completely agree.
    I myself am a hybrid. Gotta love'em .
    and its easier on everyone else especially trolls and dps.
    and thats impressive bro.
    Ive only got to Round 5.. :(
  19. Gunny New Player

    Well, I've got methods here to get you to see 7 if your group is up for the challenge. You clearly don't need to run 4-DPS groups, but you can still use these identical methods in terms of positioning and tactics.
    • Like x 1
  20. Sage-Rapha Steadfast Player

    I see man. Im up for it. :)
    If you ever wanna see what I can do, just add Prophetic Warrior to your friends list.
    We'll work on something
    • Like x 1