Lets discuss 'The Feels'

I do not like Tony.
I don’t like his splash. I don’t like his model. I don’t like his kit.

I also do not like Grumpjaw.
I don’t like his splash. I don’t like his model (Demon dog BEGONE). I don’t like his kit.

BUT, there is one thing that separates these two characters in my mind. How good they feel to play.

BEFORE I SPEAK/TYPE ANY FURTHER, remember this is a SUBJECTIVE TOPIC. So don’t get your panties in a knot. Just… let me speak.

So, what makes a character feel good to play (or give you ‘The Feels’)? Well, in my opinion, it comes down to a few different points.

  1. Visual effects
  3. Difficult mechanics

Now, this by itself isn’t particularly hard to figure out. I’m sure everyone has felt the adrenaline boost when they land that clutch spear on Varya, or landed a 1000 damage Gwen Boomstick proc, or loved that beautiful cross map BARON EXPLOOOOOOOOSION. But when these features are lacking, it becomes a problem.

For example, I’m going to go back to my favourite character AND punching bag, Blackfeather. If you play Blackfeather Weapon, he does NOT feel good to play. He had his big numbers taken away from him after the execute nerf, which although made his power curve more stable, made him boring to play. Landing his B doesn’t feel impactful because the damage is minuscule, there isn’t a slow to really reward you for landing it, and the barrier is smaller than the skill cap of CP Taka. His ultimate feels like the only flashy move in his kit, with the potential to outplay your opponents with it, but OH WAIT, it’s only up every 40 years. Plus, they’ve taken away probably the most impactful visual effect from him (Rosetrail D:). Thereby, he doesn’t feel nearly as good to play as he used to. This is a trade of fun for stability.

Now, this pattern can be seen with a large number of characters. Varya getting her spear nerfed but the other parts of her kit buffed. Idris having his passive unlock lowered but his ratios nerfed. Moving CP Vox and his damage back into his AAs and not into his bounces. Decreasing Koshka and her damage while giving her a barrier. All these changes make a character STABLE.
But not fun to play.

If I had to describe it, it’s like having a sharp spear and dulling it into a hammer. Sure, the hammer has a wider surface area and can probably hit things easier, but is it REALLY going to feel as good as impaling someone straight through the heart?

Now, in my opinion, those characters above are still fun to play. Varya can still land clutch spears and have big numbers pop up, CP Idris can dance around fights like a coward, and CP Vox can get pentakills out the ass. And Koshka… well, we all know what she does. Going really fast is one way to feel good, after all (Which, again, is another form of BIG NUMBERS). But Tony?


He does not feel good to play.

His passive is the pinnacle of braindead. There are two ways you use it. If shield is up, go in. If shield is down, probably don’t go in. It’s incredibly binary and boring.

His A just feels bad to use. It doesn’t feel smooth at all, almost as if you have negative attackspeed while using it. Instead of making your AAs do more damage, they should really give you an attackspeed bonus while it’s active, so you can make some feel-good quick triple attacks. Plus, the effect when it comes out sucks. They need to add some sort of visual oomph to the last hit.

His B CAN feel good, but only when you land it on a large number of people. That’s just a form of big numbers though. It doesn’t really feel like it requires skill when the hitbox is so absurdly broken that it could literally hit you from one base to the other and I wouldn’t be surprised.

His C looks stupid. Lets be honest here, there is no way anyone on any animation team looked at his ultimate with a smile on their face and said “Daymn. What a badass.”. Plus, because of how slow it is, it doesn’t feel snappy and good to use. You didn’t mechanically outplay them with your quick wit and reactions. You threw your ultimate out and hoped the enemy team not only already popped their crucible, but are also braindead enough to walk into it.

At least Grumpjaw can have a big, damaging slow on his A for landing it, and his ult feels fantastic when you literally just spit them out infront of your team for an asswhooping.

This is a SAFE character. It’s literally the definition of safe, and the issue I take with him is that it’s not done well. Even early characters like Ringo have a badass ultimate that FEELS good when it lands and chunks half 98% of their health because you have 17 Shatterglasses. The visuals and the BIG NUMBER that pops up feels amazing. Skye feels amazing when you dodge every dash thrown at you and when you shred the enemy team. Almost every character in this game, with their original kit, had something they could do that would give you ‘The Good Feels’. My favourite example of this is Krul. Game design wise, is there any point in his sword boomeranging? Not really. Is there really a time that a boomerang will land in a high tier game. Not really. Does it feel AMAZING? Hell. Yes.

Nowadays, I never play VG solo anymore. It’s become like what LOL has become to many veterans of that game; a background to a conversation. We just make memes and call out some vague strategies while sh*t talking eachother. Because, honestly, that can carry any game in my book, especially the boring ones. The boring ones, which is what I can see VG becoming. Now that 5v5 has come out, they need stable characters. Because when a character is unstable, they can potentially pull off some sort of wacky 1v5 in one game, and be completely useless in the next. But that’s what I want. I want my mechanical outplays, my 1v1s, my perfect executes and skillshots. I want to feel rewarded for my skill. Not shackled to my team, like some sort of dog.


I feel like SEMC is going to take the safe route with characters from now on, sacrificing their enjoyability for stability

SIDE NOTE: One major reason I feel like Captain was one the least popular role in 3v3 was the fact that they didn’t have any big numbers on their actives. If I could get some big bold healing numbers and ‘blocked’ pop ups when I prevent 12 CC ults from touching my Vox, that would feel way better than now.
Also the fact that all the cool visual FXs on captains are saved for the skins (cough Bakuto Phinn cough) doesn’t really help.

SIDE NOTE 2: In case I get those ‘Why complain when you don’t know what the developers are thinking’ comments, well, I just want to say, you’re right. But I can judge them on their actions (or lack of actions), and what I can assume they mean.

  • Hero skins have slowly dropped off in their quality increase: SEMC doesn’t want to phase out older devices, and they would prefer to play it safe and not cause these bricks to self-destruct.
  • Increased monetisation push: They want your money
  • Taking away hero complexity (RIP Blackfeather): They want to give more stability to Blackfeather among skill tiers
  • Not reworking Taka: They think that having a character that is specifically chosen by low tier players to 1v5 because there isn’t any vision is fine. Or they hate us.
  • No SEA improvements: ???
    Point is, there is a ‘most likely’ that you can assume, but not say is objectively correct unless you hear from SEMC themselves. But I do know exactly what I want. And when what I assume what SEMC is thinking goes against what I want, then I’m going to be mad. And if these assumptions and patterns that I’ve concluded are incorrect, IMO, that’s an issue with their PR department AND/OR my brain.

SIDE NOTE 3: Congratulations for making it this far! Have a cookie, and a hint on what my next post is going to be. cough Taka Rework cough


I mean caps can definitely feel rewarding when making life saving plays. Ardan has big boi barriers in the late game and Fort can help delete whole teams. Making characters stable is honestly fine. The game still feels fast paced and just as impactful as it was, though BF could use a buff on his B. I think you’re just mad that no one feels PARTICULARLY abnoxiously broken rn except for Tony. If played decently he’s ridiculous with well placed taunts .

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Exceptionally well-written post, and a very entertaining read. Just… leave Taka out of it, please. For one, calling for a rework there is going to generate many sadfaces from me. But more importantly: It goes against the thesis of your write-up that you would want to turn him into something more, well, “stable”.


I would see a nerf on Tako, but not a rework

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I don’t own Tony yet so there’s the caveat in my opinion.

Tony just seems like a low skill Ozo/Joule/Glaive hybrid. His A is a low skill version of Ozo’s TRC but with zero animation flare, single activation, auto dashes with no attack weaving, stun so you don’t need to SS, and more base damage. His B is a targeted skill like Joule’s TS but with a larger cone of effect for lower skill requirement. His Ult is just like Glaives A except with a large aoe to make it more forgiving.

His Ult is the one skill has ‘The Feels’ do to the huge knockback. But there was so much more they could have done with a punching hero. Why not build out a true combo kit where the order of activating skills changed a mechanic. He could have a base skill for each button and 6 unique follow-up skills based on the next button pressed. You give him low damage but high utility/movement for playmaking. That’s the brawler we deserved.

He should be a perennial bottom 1/3 tier of the meta based on his low skill kit.


I understand the point you make and agree completely. Although, two of the heroes you have used in your example (gj and tony) have come out in between really good heroes, such as grace, reza, baptiste and churnwalker. Surely 2 relatively easy and simple heroes is fine? grumpjaw gives me the feels if the next one is more like tony rather than varya, then there is cause to worry. We need safe and easy people for the people who just can’t pull off the difficult ones like skye or uuuuuuuh petal is our great earth mother

I like Tony, he is definitely easy and his model is very lackluster. But he’s fun to play for me. I’m not gonna comment on the direction of the game because I don’t feel like I play enough to give a good opinion in what direction the game should be going but truth is SEMC needs to be focusing on gameplay before everything else. New items, New heroes, and honestly just a better map. VG brought in players from its original map, unique controls, and superior graphics. The graphics haven’t changed and other mobas a catching up. The controls need to be adjusted and optimized for other players and this 5v5 map needs major reworks it’s so bland and boring I don’t know how it took so long for them to make. (Could’ve came up with that sorry excuse in literally a day)

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No, I think GJ is fine. His A is tricky to land but super rewarding, and his C is just kind of funny when you catch someone out with it. What I was saying at the beginning was essentially my initial reactions to both of these characters, but GJ has won me over somewhat.

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But imagine if when you hit fountain, there was a number which popped up for healing, making it cleae to your teammates that they just got clutch saved. Or there was a ‘healing negated’ pop up whenever a major healing source was used on a target with a mortal wound. I feel like it would really help those who don’t understand the impact of their plays to see them in clear numbers.

I am mad that Weapon Assassins suck. I am not mad about not having something stupidly OP. I never want to see a Gwen on the enemy team again. );

I’ve been yelling about this since Grace release. Every time they release a hero it’s overpowered compared to the current pool. If they left the heroes as they were at release, each one would be more diverse, unique, and fun to play.

In the wise words of Xaldarian (probably anyway) A hero should not be able to singlehandedly counter every other hero.

I’ll say it louder it for the SEMC in the back.


Team comp is important. SKILL is important. Don’t nuke other heroes because poor Celeste can’t get her shit together and dodge the dives once in a while. If all the heroes were buffed back to their original states at release (with some exceptions, obviously there were a few things about some heroes that shouldn’t return) then they’d be more diverse, we’d see more interesting comps and plays, and I believe an influx of players.

If anything is “killing VG” it’s SEMC blowing the heroes to shreds the patch after their release so they can blend in with the rest of the underpowered nonsense. I really think SEMC tries to get heroes on that level with buffs and consistently releasing “op” heroes, but it’s not accepted by the community because nothing can COUNTER the heroes’ power, and so it turns into a giant cancerfest until it’s nerfed. And of course if they buff a few heroes, it’s the same thing. It’s because no other heroes are strong enough to counter them singlehandedly, not that the buffed heroes are too strong.

I’ve seen captains and carries fight eachother Gatorrex Krul Vs Krul style because neither of them are strong enough to kill the other. It’s ridiculously funny, but it’s also a problem.


I understand slight balancing. Most the time though it isn’t even a character being op its the character is too new to know how to play against. For an example a high tier player might know how to play against every hereo until a new build or hereo pops up it frustrates them but instead of learning they complain

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Tony is only good right now because he’s imbalanced… They want people to buy him and have fun so he’s OP. Once he’s balanced, I don’t think he will be very relevant. Honestly this is pretty disappointing hero design… So many better options out there and I agree his character doesn’t look very good. He’s a dwarf so he’s super small. Meh.

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The best way to balance things up and remove the blah the game has now would be unnerf the rest