A long time ago in a galaxy within the computer, someone really pissed me off. Hang on, that's a terrible way to start this post. Rewind!
One of my favorite characters to play in the City is my Dark Armor tank. Now, Dark Armor has a horrible reputation as being one of the worst armor sets out there. I only say horrible because the reputation is erroneous. By the numbers, Dark Armor is one of the most capable sets, assuming you know how to play it and can handle the endurance costs. At the high end, with the right build, Dark Armor is arguably the strongest defensive set, with the exception of Stone Armor (which was designed with offensive drawbacks to compensate its ridiculous survivability).
So there I am, frolicking happily through the City when I see a broadcast for a "Master of Statesman" task force that is looking for a tank. Statesman's task force, at the time, was intended to be the most difficult task in the game (which isn't actually saying much). In this task force, you face off against four of the toughest arch-villains in the game that are four levels higher than your team. Then you proceed to fight the big bad, who is an even tougher AV, surrounded by four towers providing him with a literal rainbow of steroids. Tacking "Master of" before Statesman places the team under certain challenge restrictions, namely "no outside help (temporary powers)" and "no one can die." Knowing myself to be capable of handling the task, I send a private message to say "I can bring my Dark Armor tank for that." The reply was such a kind declination of my offer, obviously sent after careful consideration.
"Dark Armor sucks. It can't tank anything."
That pissed me off and caused me to do two things. First, I formed my own Master of Stateman task force that same weekend and succeeded. The second was to take my tank up against the toughest enemy groups I could find, set at the maximum difficulty of +4/x8, record it, and put together a little music video.
Ladies and gentlemen, allow me to introduce to you, Soulburn Sands, my Dark Armor tank. That sucks.
This video shows the segmented start to finish fight against Malta. It includes snippets from fights with Carnival of Shadows, Arachnos, and Knives of Artemis. I also spend a few seconds juggling for a group of giant monsters. Keep in mind, while watching this, that the offensive set here is Fire Melee. This means that every bit of survival I have is coming from Dark Armor and Dark Armor alone. There are no controls, no debuffs, and no heals coming from anywhere but Dark Armor.
The video was recorded before the Alpha Slot, before inherent fitness, and before the bruising effect was added to tankers. Since these upgrades, I am planning to make a second video. I've also resolved to create other characters with Dark Armor, to get a real feel for how the set performs across the spectrum of archetypes.