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Archetypeicon defender

The Defender excels at buffing his allies as well as de-buffing the enemy. Defenders prefer to keep a distance from their enemies as they are not suited for melee combat.

Faction: Hero

The Defender's power sets are:

Primary: Buff/Debuff
Secondary: Ranged

The Defender has Low Hit Points and Medium Damage.

Power Sets[]

Primary Power Sets[]

A Defender's primary power sets are designed specifically for buffing or debuffing. They are:

Secondary Power Sets[]

A Defender's secondary power sets are designed for ranged attacks. They are:

Ancillary Power Pools[]

Inherent Power[]

  • Vigilance
  • In PvP, some debuffs from Defender primary powers are unaffected by the target's Resistances.


The underlying principle behind Defender play is that of support. No single power of the Defender sets tends to pack a distinct punch on its own, because they're designed to improve the power of a team. What this means is that most Defender attack sets are designed to start with a large number of cumulative attacks.

This can be seen fairly evidently in Defender secondaries; most of them attack very quickly, and almost all Defender secondaries have a cumulative debuff effect of some variety. This means that a Defender's actual attacks can be stacked together very quickly, and their debuffing effects can be maximized. Therefore, the most potent powers of the Defender are usually at their finest because they can be stacked. Defender play, when solo, is very action-focused; you attack very quickly, and many of your buffs and debuffs recharge very quickly. This speed seems to be so that in a team, you can quickly transfer your attention around to different concerns.

As a noteworthy exception, Archery does not have a cumulative debuff effect, instead possessing a basic accuracy boost. In the past it was thought that Archery synergized with Trick Arrow, as it was believed attacks from the primary and secondary did not cause any issues regarding re-drawing the weapon. Before Issue 11, Developers weighed in on this discussion on the official forums to assure players that there was nothing that slowed down/quickened attacks because of weapon draw animations. During Issue 11, the animations for both Archery and Trick Arrows had their weapon draw times, as well as many of their 'arrow draw times', removed. Now, a player with either Archery or Trick Arrows will be faster than before (whether they draw their bow before attacking or not), and a player with both Archery and Trick Arrows will be even faster. The developer, Back Alley Brawler, encouraged people to see the change not as characters being slower if they didn't have both powersets (as each set is now much faster than before), but as a bonus if they did.

The unfortunate drawback is that Defenders rarely have much direct impact; because their powers are so powerful when cumulative, they tend to not have much immediate effect on their own. Defeating a higher conning boss or lieutenant for most low-level Defenders can best be compared to pushing rope uphill. While the Defender is often very safe, with their debuffs and buffs, the exchange for this safety is speed.

External Links[]