I don’t get being intentionally obtuse on the buff length or how the keystone works. The keystone is easy to use, I ran chainsword and columnus, and when closing distance I’d use ranged to kill at least one mob to activate 10s of 15% attack speed & 10% dodge distance/speed. You then melee away as normal, accumulating a stack per melee kill up to 10 (just swapping every 5s nets you nothing, you need to kill in both modes). IF something like a special or elite happens to rear its head at range, you swap back for a solid +33-330% crit chance for 5s to range (and if traited, your weapon ALWAYS HAS AMMO in the clip even if you just emptied it) to deal with said special. Or just swap to range and pick off a nearby trash mob to refresh your 10s melee buff. Rinse, repeat. It’s not a difficult playstyle to decipher. It may NOT be the playstyle for you, and that’s fine, but calling it niche is absurd. It’s pretty straightforwardly a melee style complimented by swapping to range occasionally for power bursts.
Dude has a point. I get that you want ‘always on’ buffs instead of the keystones. A thing is, I’d say there’s certainly room to argue on all the keystones - but first you need to accept that they are, in fact, pretty darn solid as many people are saying. I’d be the first to say the vet tree still needs work (4-5 more points to get/fill out keystones hurts flexibility) and maybe if they do you can find your passive buffs and ignore these keystones, but they’re objectively pretty darn strong and people that are actually trying them instead of complaining about them agree.
There’s too much bloat in the tree compared to the other classes, and on top of that, many of the passives in the tree are so weak and/or underwhelming that it just makes it even worse.
With the new keystones being even less impactful than how it was before ON TOP of the nerfed passives, it further just makes the problem more noticeable.
But you actually don’t. Everything works perfectly without such a boost, it’s just an extra level of complexity for no reason. Ogryn kickback doesn’t need such a boost. You just switch, delete, and switch back. Playing Zealot my revolver/brauto doesn’t need such a boost, and neither do my melee weapons.
Funnily enough Agile Engagement works as a ranged boost for a melee playstyle or a melee boost for a ranged playstyle and not for a supposed hybrid playstyle.
On the other hand, if we think about the Keystone as a “conditional” buff it woefully underperforms other keystones. Inexorable Judgement gives as much AS as this on average with potentially more while also giving damage to both melee and ranged, and it’s constantly active. I mean seriously IJ performs just as well for “quick swap” while not being a quick-swap-centric Keystone.
BTW I can almost buy this as a balance problem, meaning that Vet is such a piece of undertuned garbage currently that the “nice conditional boost” WS supposedly provides feels like a mandatory upkeep to perform close to everyone else, but…
The fact is that you can actually keep WS up constantly, it isn’t hard, just takes up mental space (and it feels wrong to play).
Again it would be a balancing nightmare in that regard too. If right-side melee Vet would perform in line with let’s say a Zealot while being balanced around WS being a conditional “nice to have sometimes” boost, it would automatically make Vet more powerful if you are willing to play into this switcharoo clownshow.
Kinda seems like it lately. Which is especially strange considering that they’ve said more than once that it’s also statistically their most popular class.
They’ve already got enough problems like crafting, lack of weapon customization (unless you’re using the mod), lack of endgame, lack of new content, underwhelming/lack of cosmetics, and just generally repetitive gameplay. They don’t need to antagonize the largest groupings of their playerbase on top of that.
Good for you guys who’ve found something to enjoy with the current iteration of this tree. I envy you that. Sincerely I do. I wish I did as well. I don’t think this will cut it though. Piggybacking off of what @Mayson said earlier, these keystones might be effective if utilized in the correct conditions, but they’re not nearly as practical or satisfying as they should be as an endgame “reward” motivator, especially compared to what they were before, in stark contrast to every other class.
It’s a frustrating, confusing, underwhelming mess right now and it never had to be so. Seriously, this won’t do.
It still feels incredibly inconvenient and incentivizes strongly a compulsive playstyle that flows unnaturally. And thanks for the explanation.
Nothing against people who enjoy quick swap gameplay and finally have a game that supports their playstyle. But it is niche. This is essentially the quickscope / melee yolo type of play. This is not how most people play their shooters or their melee combat games.
They don’t have to be always on, but I’d settle for the trigger being less finnicky.
Maybe I would think of the swapping build to be more useful if the game was more fluid, but my experience is close range combat being super iffy mixed with the weapon switching.
How often does your weapon swap get interrupted or somehow the input dropped. It feels fiddly without having abilities depend on it, so I don’t even want to deal with dependencies relying on it.
You’re right on one thing - I haven’t tried them yet. Mostly because I feel I can’t give up so many talent points elsewhere just to go deep.
Maybe I should try those keystones but just by reading the description, they seem fiddly and unnecessarily overcomplicated.
Okay. After going in with an open mind and trying them all out, I have to say my previous worries were a little unfounded.
I find the Focus Target one to be the best for teamplay, especially when coupled with the shout ability. You can maintain toughness regen and damage buffs throughout the entire run as long as taggable enemies appear. The clutch potential is high.
All that sad, I’m still a bit sour that taking the keystones forces you to give up so many “nice to have” talents. That’s really my main complaint now. And that many of them got nerfed in this patch, for no discernable reason.
The ranged keystone still feels somewhat clunky, if you go for the extra 5 stacks as opposed to the autoregen every 0.75 seconds.
At least if you try to do a Lasgun build with it. Just feels somewhat unreliable in Maelstrom missions.