I've tried out a lot of the Marvel Heroes so far and right now Luke Cage is on the top of the list of "I'm really going to dislike levelling him up!", mind you I only brought him to the level 10 cap. As of right now, the only way I can really do damage to an enemy is to just stand in front of them, take a beating and see how long I can last before I have to run away or pop a medkit.
I main issue with Luke's offense is the whole combo meter, because in order to get to a power that does damage like his "K.O." power, I have to build the combo meter with weak punches in close. This isn't an issue if you are fighting one or two normal enemies and have decent gear, but when you are fighting bosses or gangs, this becomes a problem, especially if they are attacking from range, because you are taking heavy damage from bosses in order to get a power that might do some damage. If you decide to not to stand there to build up the combo meter and use his "Cage Was Here" charge up power, you still have to stand close and wait a couple of seconds for it to charge and take a beating. But this a spirit spender and in order to rebuild your spirit you either have to run around and wait for it to refresh or go back in close and use your weak punches and get another beating and hope you last long enough to recharge it. I have read that Luke has a talent that negates the charge time but that isn't until level 44.
I know melee powers will always have a disadvantage when it comes to ranged powers, but there's usually a couple of ranged, movement or maybe gadget powers mixed in to provide some distance or flexibility on how you use your melee powers and I think this is one of the major flaws of Luke Cage. His two movement powers, "Cold Shoulder" and "Elbow Drop" both have problems with them. With "Cold Shoulder" there is of course the obvious max charge situation, but beyond this, it isn't really accurate and the stun effect doesn't last long enough. If I'm going to stun an opponent I want to be able to take advantage of it, but to stun with a movement power, I have to place the distance between me and the opponent perfectly so I can punch him while he is stunned. If I do manage to do this the stun is only 1 sec, so by the time I have hit the button to punch him, the stun is pretty much over. Most of the time however, the movement is off target and the movement stops past the target, so I have to go back to the target beat him up with my melee powers, which means I can't take advantage of the stun effect. With "Elbow Drop", it also suffers from accuracy issues, especially if your enemy is moving, which unless you attack before they notice you, is a constant, so you are using this power hoping it hits. On top of this it has a 6sec cooldown, so you can't get up and try it again.
As for Luke's ranged attacks, he has three, one, "Chain Yank", "Chunk O' Concrete" and "Vehicular Manslaughter" and all have problems. First "Chain Yank" isn't really a ranged power, it is just power to bring an opponent closer to you to use your melee powers. The major problem I have with the character is having to just stand in front of an opponent and take a beating in order to do damage, so why would I want to use a power to compound this issue. If this power would immobilize or stun the opponent or use it to draw them into an AoE power, like Ghost Rider, then I could see the use for it. If "Chain Yank" did have a good stun or immobilize effect, the unfortunate part would be that it would only work on one enemy. If you use it on a single enemy in a group, you may stun that enemy but you have a swarm on you right away and if they are more than normal enemies you may get a beatdown and again be running around using medkits like crazy. On top of that, the single enemy better not be a boss, because from what I've seen the power won't draw the boss closer to you. However, if the stun was long enough to be able to run to the boss and use your melee powers while they are still stunned, then that wouldn't be too much of an issue, but still if a power is designed to draw an enemy in, it should work on all enemies.
When it comes to "Chunk O' Concrete" and "Vehicular Manslaughter", right now I only have minor concerns with them, because I haven't used them so I am just going off their descriptions in the Skill menu. With "Chunk O' Concrete" I think there should be a stun effect to attached to it for that stun to be long enough so that if I hit them from range, I can get to the enemy and still have them stunned when I use my melee attacks on them. With "Vehicular Manslaughter", I would like to see the damaged increased, I mean you have a guy with superstrength and it does less damage than his "Chunk O' Concrete" power. Also, I think the stun should be increased so that I can take better advantage of it.
While Luke Cage's offence to me has problems, one thing that really sticks out to me is his lack of base defence. I mean, Luke's signature ability besides being super strong is that his skin is impenetrable, so when I see him have to consume medkit after medkit just to stay alive, it sucks the fun out of playing him. When I'm getting shot by Crossbone's goons in Midtown, I should be laughing those guys off, not running around hoping I don't die. Even in his Skill set he has "Tactical Defence" to Weaken his opponent when he should have a power to make himself Invulnerable, maybe call it "Bullet-Proof". Having Luke be pretty much a pure melee character, he needs better survivability and having that invulnerability power would help.
I think if Marvel Heroes were to add more stuns to Luke's powers, so I could stun an enemy, then run in and beat the crap out of them and/or add an Invulnerability power at a lower level, I think Luke would be so much more fun to play. Sure, gear, talents, crafting and other things would help, but they would just bring him up to average maybe, not make a good hero great, plus it doesn't really help when you are just starting to rank him up.