So like many players I love me some dual axes. Now I think most people would agree that they’re not bad, but also not competitive at any niche. Here are some ideas that I think would make them better without over buffing them.
Charged attacks are kinda awkward to use, and only the third one is nice to headshot with IMO. I think that
the charge attacks should have better stagger. It’s weird to see your two charged axe attacks smash into a stormvermin and have him not even flinch
the charge attacks feel a bit slow and unwieldy, and getting to that nice heavy 3 attack is tedious. Let us link push attack straight into heavy 3. This would be a great anti elite combo and feel super stylish to boot.
I don’t know enough about damage numbers to know if these need tweaking. What do people think of my suggestions, and what would you change about dual axes?
Eh I want beastmen balance and a few more bug fixes first. Then I’d like to see another weapon balance beta where they work on getting all the weapons to have a function, dual axes included.
But specifically on the point of axes (because 1H axe feels kinda bad too). I prefer the buff be made to lights. Part of what I liked about them was you could swing like a madman and get crits and attack speed to continue attacking like a madman. And I feel like the heavies hitting with a lot of power can stay the ream of hammers provided axe quick slashed get back to a point where they’re effective.
They’re a straight nerf. Why would I have LESS stamina with two axes? Ok, fine, the other dual wield weapons have 1 less stamina than their 1H counterparts, but that just means 1H Axe needs 4 Stamina so Dual Axes can have 3 Stamina. Is that too much to ask?
Actually Falchion has 4 stamina (2 shields), while A&F has 6 stamina (3 shields), for some reason. Just saying.
I like the idea of tweaking which charged attack comes after push-followup, but that’s not nearly enough. Why not give the dual axes the treatment the regular Axes got - the 10% Crit Chance increase on all attacks? The advantage of 1h Axe over Dual Axes is mostly that more frequnt critical strikes greatly reduce the time needed to mow down the elites.
Dual Axes are exclusive to the Slayer and perform much worse than the Axe itself due to “dual wield stamina penalty”, resulting in less effective push-followups available without certain properties (doesn’t exactly promote being creative), and giving nothing essentially nothing satisfying in return, with the exception of slightly better anti-horde capabilities, which have no use whatsoever, as Slayer usually takes one weapon suited against elites, and the other against the trash/horde.
In the current Perpetual Horde Of Meatiness (PHUM™) patch, they need to have better cleave or they are just a sub-par hybrid between 1h axe and dual hammers.
That or they need to have their light attacks buffed up so they can kill fanatics and weaker in one hit, the way they used to. But as long as it takes multiple hits to clear each hordie, they will not be competitive in the current envoronment.
It’s true that dual axes have a huge dodge range, but this doesn’t count for much if their stopping power isn’t that good. The weapon doesn’t stagger or cleave unless you charge up a slow heavy attack. Even then the cleave and stagger is minimal.
In a horde you basically need to be able to infinitely kite, otherwise you’ll take a bunch of stray hits or get surrounded. I do a lot of solo + bot legend runs to compare classes, and dual axes is much riskier than any other weapon besides maybe 1h axes.
Vs armor 2h axe, 2h hammer, and pickaxe are better
Vs hordes 2h axe, 2h hammer, dual hammers, 1h hammer are all better
Maybe the dual axes are supposed to be a jack of all trades weapon like axe/falch, but right now they just take too long to kill things.
You’re preaching to the choir boss. The things benefits don’t outpace it’s downsides. It’s too weak comparatively, has just awful horde control, and fits unique into the problem that all Bardins weapons suffer from in one way or the other but is particularly bad because the thing it’s supposed to be good at (heavy single target damage) is pretty damn low.
I like some of the ideas here but I don’t think more horde clear is what they need. With 2 melee slots Slayer is often gonna wanna pick different weapons for different jobs. The main problem IMO is that 1h axe is safer and more effective for armour killing. Dual axes already deal with thin hordes better than 1h axe but it doesn’t matter cause that’s not what you bring them for. You have another melee weapon for that.
Dunno what the solution is here but figured some nicer attack chains to make heavy 3 easier to get to would at least make them feel nicer to use, and more stagger would make charge attacks a bit safer since they’re already cumbersome.
Maybe the more pertinent question is what niche dual axes should fill that 1H axe doesn’t. Should they just be 1H axe but with sightly worse armour dps but better horde control to compensate? Should they be better armour dps than 1h axe but with some drawbacks like worse mobility or stamina? I really don’t know how to balance these things against the existing 1H axe while keeping both relevant, really curious if anyone has any ideas on this.
Can say pretty confidently though that we shouldn’t be balancing with making quad axes viable as a priority. That’s fun but dumb and it’s more healthy to have multiple viable builds.
Cleave or damage involves the ability to do it’s specific job. Elites are often in the middle of hordes now. It’s worlds of difference staggering them with the 2h axe, 2h hammer, and Pick, cleaving through mobs and doing charge attacks with the dual hammers, and trying to address that same enemy with the dual axes.
Dual hammers get great horde clear and on top of that only take 1 less hit (and often the same amount of hits given the nature of crits) on average to kill CWs while performing near the exact same for maulers, stormvermin, monks, savages, Bestigor, and every single special.
That’s actually insane.
Meanwhile dual axes best functionality, being their elite killing and their “boss killing” is overshadowed by the fact that the 1h axe performs similar and arguably better in both capacities. Taking about the same amount of hits over the same length of time while also being able to one shot slaves in skaven hordes on cata.
Dual axes get to be used on Slayer and ONLY on Slayer. It shouldn’t be having problems in performance in comparison to a weapon that is available on 6 careers across two characters.
Fair enough and good points. I definitely see what you’re saying about dealing with elites surrounded by hordes. Can you tell me what moves you’re using in your comparisons between dual axes and dual hammers? Dual hammers’ light attacks definitely feel much weaker against armour than dual axes, so I assume you’re comparing heavy attacks? What then about the dual axes still pretty stellar push attacks? It still feels pretty strong against armour to me though I mostly play legend.
Edit: Also are dual hammers maybe a bit overtuned compared to his other weapons at the moment? Don’t see much else on Bardin players these days except S+A sometimes.
Yeah we’re comparing the heavies. Dual axe lights against enemies kill them in around (or more) the same time as the heavies. For example. A Storm Vermin on Cata requires 10 lights with 20% v armor while only requiring 3 heavy attacks. Dual hammers can’t deal any damage to them with lights but still kill them in 3 heavy attacks. Or 3 pushattack+followups
Lights for elites on Cata just doesn’t seem like a feasible option given the ttk with them versus the amount that they throw at you.
As for the push attacks they do exactly the same amount of damage as a heavy but get the feature of being an overhead. They come out slightly faster as well. But are weighed against the fact that on cata you need 3 of them to kill 1 SV (that’s all or more of your shields). Assuming both axes hit the head.
Dual hammers aren’t so overtuned as the fact that they’re balanced like the rest of the characters weapons. I still personally take the 2H Hammer because it simply clears more ground so people around me stop taking incidental hits, and by proxy stop running these hits into me. But on their own they’re solid weapons that give you horde mauling functionality while having decent elite killing capabilities. The boss damage not being exactly stellar is the tradeoff.
The main take away from any of this is that every other one of Bardin’s weapons comfortably sits in it’s spot or niche besides Dual Axes. Because they compete with every other weapon he has and loses in one or more categories on the two things it’s supposed to be good at.
With enemies skating again, tracking harder, and other miscellaneous what not, it’s longer distance dodges (especially when weighed against the loss of our dodge talent), and higher block mobility (only has two shields and you want to be able to have access to push attacks) are no longer enough to carry the weapon. Especially not when it’s performance is used in comparison.
As a small note:
The weapons aren’t unusable. Wouldn’t want onlookers getting the wrong idea.
Fantastic write up, thanks for explaining. I’ve been using dual axes + dual hammers with extra attack speed on legend and the dual axes feel mostly fine there, though their mediocre damage feels noticeable if soloing chaos warriors (I find it real hard to head shot them consistently with dual axe charge attack, it’s just kinda awkward feeling).
I can imagine how on Cata their damage could very quickly become problematic.
Any ideas on how specifically you could make them a competitive choice?
My problem with the Dual Axes stems from the fact that they’re pretty much the generalist option on a Career that thrives on specialist weapons. No matter what kinds of combos you want to use, you want to take weapons that compensate for each others’ weaknesses with their strengths - but the Dual Axes don’t have significant strengths or weaknesses.
They’re moderately good against armour, but there are weapons that do better. They’re good enough against hordes, but not fantastic. Their single-target damage (against squishy targets) can get pretty high, but even there they don’t surpass anything else. With two melee options (or melee plus Throwing Axes, which are very good against armour and do something unusual to boot), there’s no real reason to take Dual Axes.
So I think they need some more… let’s call it character. They need at least something they’re good at, to make them worth taking over single Axe, Warpick, Dual Hammers or Throwing Axes. I’m not sure what exactly it should be, though, and depends a lot on what FS wants them to do.
Solid points, but I will say something I’ve noticed that I think you got wrong in your post. Dual axes are very good at one thing in particular: fast lunging charged overheads via the push attack. No other weapon has this, and it can be used to great extent w/ dodge and ult to dance around storm vermin, chaos warriors, and maulers. However, that only lasts while you have stamina up, and after you’re stamina’s gone you can’t block so it’s not such a benefit in the grand scheme of things.
Edit: So I guess you could say their best functionality is dancing around the enemy while using charged overheads. Doing a lunging push attack and dodging to the left is EXTREMELY fast, probably taking less than half a second to perform.
That’s about it, and if that’s the dual axes’ only strength then they suck.
But with hordes the way they are you do this at incredible risk of insta-down and killed with horde chip damage ‘sticking’ you to the ground and the casual random hits you anyway through dodge for various reasons issue.
yeah you can dodge hordes all day in champion, maybe in legend to but I’ve yet to meet a cata player who isn’t handmaiden who can claim that specific title and even handmaiden gets stuck occasionally.
Oh yeah, in a horde situation, or even with a few enemies behind or to the sides of you, the push attack is risky. You can push attack into dodge while blocking but still, that’s a lot of effort for a charged overhead.
In champion you don’t even need to dodge for the most part. On legend you can kinda dodge around hordes, but that requires a very open space and only 1-2 directions the horde is approaching from. Very rare that you can actually dodge around a horde in legend. Only tried cata a few times (completed one run) and it was definitely harder, but overall not TOO much harder if your team plays well.