Outcast Engineer - A Discussion

Outcast Engineer is a range-focused career for Bardin Goreksson. It is a career with a high skill floor due to his low mobility and highly vulnerable Crank Gun Career Skill (and the micromanaging that comes with it) and a low skill ceiling due to its finite amount of firepower and limited scaling. It is also heavily reliant on team coordination to assist him in reaching his full (limited) potential. In spite of this, Outcast Engineer provides unique utility via his passive increased bomb carrying capacity, ranged power aura and a select few talents that rely on the creativity of the user. The career has immense customizability via weapon pairings and talents but struggles to occupy a useful niche that cannot be better covered by other careers. The purpose of this post is to discuss the good that he possesses, the problems he currently has, and some ways to make him feel better and have a purpose on the team.

What Does Engineer have?

Good Breakpoints (Melee and Ranged)

  • Spotter passive allows useful ranged breakpoints ( for both the Engineer and the team) and enables the Masterwork Pistol more than other careers as a long range special killing tool.

  • Spotter in conjunction with Scavenged Shot talent allows for room to achieve more melee breakpoints (ex: one shot SV with Coghammer at 10% power vs. Skaven).

  • Full Head of Steam furthers this but not nearly as reliable.

Customizability

  • The amount of choice allows you to create builds that play very differently even if they might have similar weapons. It also allows you to better divide up the Engineer’s ranged responsibilities with the different ranged weapons he can use at once (Drakefire gun for horde and Gromril-Plated Shots for armour and specials).

  • Level 10 talents provide ammo sustain or more value out of each shot. Leading Shots provides single target DPS and enables Scrounger ammo sustain. Armour Piercing Slugs provide additional horde DPS and allow rounds to penetrate through previously impenetrable targets such as armour or monsters. Scavenged Shot enhances melee power and provides ranged ammo sustain via free shots.

  • Level 20 talents allow you to choose how Pressure stacks behave as well as what boons you get from them. Full Head of Steam provides both burst and sustained power if properly managed. Experimental Steam Capacitors allow you to fire without consuming Pressure stacks and maintain those stacks after the Career Skill bar is full. Superior Gaskets provides unlimited Pressure stack duration for a mostly hands-free cranking experience while increasing attack speed for each Pressure stack.

  • Level 30 talents allow you to customize how the Crank Gun itself handles be it increased armour penetration and damage, being able to instantly reach max fire rate or have increased capacity and fire with no Ability Bar consumption after a special kill.

Some Unique Utility

  • Utility Belt passive allows Engineer to stock up on explosives throughout the level and bring out the most potential in them.

  • The Bombardier talent both increases the power of bombs and the consistency of them by making them universally the same. However this talent’s value is based on the reliability of the Engineer to find bombs within a level and at times is subject exclusively to luck and circumstance.

  • The Piston Power talent provides an extremely strong stagger effect to enemies via heavy attack. This has immense value depending on the heavy attack as you can potentially heavily stagger multiple enemies. Good for self defense and the ability to stagger monsters is extremely valuable as a utility.

A Cool and Fun Minigun

  • Satisfying fire rate (Gromril-Plated Shots are a little lacking) and fitting audio (even if a little overbearing in first person) lead to a fun experience.

Problems

Extremely Vulnerable

  • 100 base HP compounds many of the following issues for the Engineer and makes them significantly more gameplay changing at higher difficulties.

  • Situational awareness is lost upon shooting the Crank Gun. Shooting masks the sounds of enemies that come up behind or from the periphery of the Engineer (more so on high fire rate Crank Guns). With 100 Base HP this means the Engineer can die from as few as 1 surprise attack at worst, and 4 at best on higher difficulties such as Legend and Cataclysm. This makes using the Crank Gun immensely risky and punishing, where every shot could potentially result in the Engineer being wounded or killed without a way to know it is coming. This removes the utility of the “6th sense” or “woosh”, as it is masked by Crank Gun fire and the following cranking noises and steam hissing.

  • The Engineer is basically immobile outside of dodges while firing. When combined with a lack of situational awareness stemming from overbearing Crank Gun audio, this makes it more difficult to react to threats when he does happen to catch them coming.

  • Gunfire pulls ambient enemies around the Engineer and where the bullet landed. This can end up with ambient enemies the Engineer cannot see or know are there eventually sneaking up behind him, and compounds with the awareness issue.

  • Taking a hit from an enemy while firing the Crank Gun stops the gun from firing (excluding Fire Rats and Ratling Gunners). Taking damage while using the Crank Gun prevents the Engineer from being able to immediately gun down the source of the attack. This makes situations even worse if there are multiple threats, as the Engineer can no longer get the Crank Gun going again until the threats are eliminated or distance away from them is created, completely defining moments where the Crank Gun can and cannot be used. Ambushes become limiting- and in some cases prevent the entire use of the Crank Gun, as there is no position where you can set up to fire without being interrupted by attacks.

  • Ablative Armour does not work on client. Damage reduction stacks are removed by friendly fire, venting heat from Drakefire weapons, and environment damage (acid pool in Garden of Morr, Nurgle’s Rot deed modifier). These issues are likely not intended but reduce the usefulness of the talent to almost nothing with certain builds.

Scaling Issues

  • The Engineer cannot generate his Ability Bar via melee and ranged combat or damage taken similar to other careers. While it is hard to quantify the difference this makes accurately, it certainly makes a difference in dire scenarios (current brief testing shows ~60 seconds off of Mercenary’s 90 second cooldown after taking 112 damage with damage reduction via Walk it Off active). This would be the equivalent of generating an entire Ability Bar for Linked Compression Chamber.

  • Engineer is very opportunistic in nature and the value he brings to the team is heavily determined by how often he can take advantage of these opportunities. However, even when taking advantage of these opportunities, his effectiveness is heavily limited. His effectiveness can be influenced by the positioning of the horde or an ambush, reducing the effectiveness of each round fired from the Crank Gun, as enemies are spread out or compromising his position. The environment he is in also influences his potential. Increasing his potential with choke points by condensing hordes, and reducing it in very open areas where enemies are more likely to spread out. Enemies that prevent Crank Gun penetration are also large factors in the amount of value the Engineer can provide to the team.

  • The amount of Ability Bar the Engineer can generate is extremely limited, and the speed at which it generates is predetermined and not influenced at all by the difficulty of a given scenario. As scenarios become more dangerous, other careers have the potential to generate their Career Skill faster through taking damage and combat as well as passive generation. This is very different from the Engineer, as his Ability Bar does not fill faster as difficulty increases, but rather stays the same. This is particularly a problem for the Engineer as his Career Skill is used to keep situations under control, and becomes exponentially harder to use as the situation spirals out of control. The Engineer currently has no way to further increase the rate at which he generates Ability Bar to compensate for increases in difficulty (be it spikes or sustained difficulty) outside of finite consumable resources such as potions. As a result, the Crank Gun often runs out of Ability Bar when you need it most.

Theoretical vs. In Practice: Performance and Niche

As team skill changes, the factors that influence the opportunities that the Engineer gets rise and fall, but in a way that counteracts each other so there is never a peak, but an average number of opportunities. This directly diminishes his efficiency in both directions unless the team coordinates around the Engineer, in which case the same argument could be made of every career. Even then, the Engineer is not the best in any situation versus other careers. As a simple explanation, his opportunity count and how well he can take advantage of opportunities can be determined by 4 factors. These 4 factors being the amount of Ability Bar you have, the availability of enemies that your Career Skill effects (elites, specials for Gromril-Plated shots and horde for other Career Skills), positioning of enemies and control over the horde, and how likely the team is to defend a certain area rather than keeping pace during these opportunities.

Less skilled and coordinated teams generally result in less efficient use of Career Skill and thus lower availability of Ability Bar, more enemies as there is less of an opportunity for the Engineer to keep control of the situation, less control over the positioning of enemies and horde, but the more likely the team is to linger in an area and not keep pace. An example of this could be an ambush where enemies are coming from multiple directions and are generally spread out due to the positioning of the Engineer and his teammates. Control over the movement of the horde is less as the team is more spread out, leading to inefficient Crank Gun usage and lower Ability Bar as the Engineer gets less value by shooting small patches of enemies. Not only does the ambush make the value of shooting the Crank Gun worse, it also prevents the Engineer from firing as he is attacked from multiple angles. Because of this the number of enemies increases and the situation is more volatile. However the team still stays in the general area as they are all individually fighting their own battles and less likely to be able to move forward.

The more skilled (not necessarily coordinated) a team is, the more Ability Bar you have available as a result of the team handling the threats you brought the Crank Gun for, better positioning and control over hordes and enemies, but the less likely the team is to linger, and the more likely they will try to keep pace. The same example can be applied here with different results. A higher skilled team would be closer together in an ambush, condensing some of the enemies as they approach. As the team is clearing the ambush together they enable the Engineer to upkeep the Ability bar, but the value in shooting the Crank Gun becomes more superficial as the team can already handle the threats competently.

This problem is almost exclusive to the Engineer as he is very Career Skill bound, and does not have a niche without it. The niches he would otherwise occupy are limited in availability (Bombardier and Utility Belt requiring bombs - a finite resource or Piston Power - a high stagger attack on cooldown).

Theoretical vs. In Practice: The Crank Gun

The Crank Gun lends itself to taking out large amounts of targets in bursts. Theoretically the Crank Gun (Innovative Ammo Hoppers for this specific case) has enough Ability Bar to handle hordes on Cataclysm before running out of juice. However, in practice, this falls apart. As hordes generally come every 1-2 minutes on Cataclysm there is enough time to generate a full Ability Bar. When firing on the horde itself things can fall apart. As hordes come in multiple waves, your Ability Bar usage is not as efficient as it needs to be to clear a Cataclysm horde before running out of juice. Other factors such as available choke points, horde composition (elites and enemies with more mass prevent bullet penetration and thus less efficient horde clearing), corpses soaking cleave, and the availability of your Ability Bar also come into play. This means that even with no outside interference and a full Ability Bar the Engineer cannot handle a single horde on his own. You can increase the value of each bullet with Armour Piercing Slugs for penetration. However this further requires opportunities to take advantage of this penetration, so choke points and horde control are necessary to function at a basic level.

Pressure and Cranking

  • The way Pressure behaves as well as the buffs it provides can lead to frustrating inefficiencies and unsatisfying gameplay loops. Full Head of Steam and Superior Gaskets suffer as a result of the default behavior of Pressure. Specifically, how their bonuses fade upon firing or filling the Ability Bar. In both cases, firing a single shot from the Crank Gun results in all Pressure being consumed and Ability Bar generation to cease. In the case of Superior Gaskets, attack speed is instantly lost upon firing or reaching full Ability Bar. As a result of filling the Ability Bar, the Engineer is forced to fire the Crank Gun even if it isn’t the most ideal scenario in order to get the attack speed back. This can be an unnecessary risk in combat and can lead to inefficient use of the Crank Gun resulting in the Engineer not having enough Ability Bar when it is needed. As a result of firing the weapon for a brief period of time to more efficiently clear ambients or densely packed enemies, the Engineer must crank for what feels like a disproportionate amount of time. This is also a potential risk as the Engineer cannot defend themselves while cranking and is unsatisfying in general. In the case of Full Head of Steam, the power increase can remain even after firing or reaching full Ability Bar. However if this is to be maintained the Engineer must then crank 5 additional times to activate the buff again. The time it takes to crank 5 times to refresh the buff is ~5 seconds, or half the duration of the buff itself. This still requires the Engineer to fire the Crank Gun in inopportune scenarios akin to Superior Gaskets and results in inefficient use and the unavailability of the Ability Bar in key moments. However it leads to even more frustrating gameplay loops if the Engineer decides to use the Crank Gun for brief periods of time similar to the Superior Gaskets example. This forces the Engineer to crank 5 times after every burst of the Crank Gun on top of managing the power buff itself.

  • The act of Cranking is an interesting way of increasing Ability Bar generation but comes across as forced rather than a mechanic to take advantage of. The act of Cranking itself only gives Engineer the bare minimum that other careers have for Ability Bar generation - the capability of passively generating it over time.

Potential Solutions

Vulnerability

  • Providing Engineer some kind of buffer to enable him to make use of the Crank Gun without being quickly whittled down by attacks could go a long way in bettering his performance and how it feels to play him. Providing this buffer could allow him to take the risk to try to bring control to volatile situations instead of going on the defensive, making it further spiral out of control. A base health increase could assist with this buffer and enable more builds that are more aggressive and melee involved.

  • An adjustment to the audio when firing the Crank Gun in first person to allow the Engineer to pick up on the noises of nearby enemies could potentially increase his longevity. This would also prevent the feeling of taking what seems like unavoidable damage. Enabling the Engineer to be able to watch his own back while firing the Crank Gun would also remove the growing need for someone in the party to “babysit” him.

  • A passive ability preventing the Engineer from being interrupted when using a ranged weapon could further position him as a heavy ranged artillery career and prevent him from being a pushover in close quarters. This could compound with a health buffer to allow him to even better maintain control of situations without being quickly shut down in high risk scenarios.

Scaling, Pressure, and Cranking

  • Many of the scaling issues Engineer suffers are a result of the limited availability and generation of the Ability Bar. It requires the Engineer to take advantage of fleeting opportunities in order to get the most value out of the Ability Bar. The hope being that by taking advantage of these opportunities the Ability Bar can last until the situation can then be under control. However, there is still a finite amount the Engineer can fire, and a finite rate at which he can generate his Ability Bar, preventing the Engineer from adapting to higher difficulty scenarios. A general direction that could potentially help solve this problem is by enabling different ways to sustain or generate the Ability Bar by performing actions that become more common or frequent as the difficulty of a combat scenario increases that don’t just result in more cranking. One example being the ability to generate a portion of the Ability Bar proportional to the amount of multikills the Engineer gets in a period of time is something that goes in this direction. It allows the Engineer to increase the availability of the Ability Bar as difficulty of a given scenario increases through enemy density. It also rewards skillful play that takes advantage of these same opportunities such as taking advantage of choke points resulting in more multikills with less Ability Bar consumption. These mechanics could be tied to a given Level 20 or 30 talent that allows it to better perform its given niche as difficulty increases. The current Innovative Ammo Hoppers talent is an example of giving talents these mechanics, but with less consistency as the range of the Crank Gun is limited and the specials that tend to approach are (armoured) Fire Rats, Packmasters, and Leeches. Another issue with this is that specials tend to be eliminated faster as a given team’s skill increases. Sniping weapons such as the Crossbow, Handgun, and Longbow can almost always beat the Crank Gun to a special kill. This can occasionally result in less efficient use of the Ability Bar as a teammate gets the final blow on the special after the Engineer invested a portion of the Ability Bar in an attempt to better sustain its fire.

  • Pressure as a mechanic with a defined stack limit is healthy for the Engineer as it allows him to perform other useful actions without being occupied by cranking at all times. However, the Level 20 talents that rely on him maintaining Pressure manually (Full Head of Steam and Experimental Steam Capacitors) do not reward the risk inherited by this responsibility. Instead the Engineer feels punished after realizing that they had not cranked prior to an encounter or were otherwise occupied and could not. This is permanently lost Career Skill potential as the Engineer cannot generate the Ability Bar passively. Allowing his Ability Bar to slowly generate passively instead of not at all could position cranking and Pressure as a reward for risking oneself and investing time into the Career Skill instead of being a forced action. This would feel less punishing when cranking is unable to occur or otherwise does not happen.

  • Pressure-related buffs could also use some quality of life improvements to avoid causing Ability Bar inefficiencies and frustrating gameplay loops while still rewarding micromanagement. Allowing Pressure to be generated by cranking after the Ability Bar is full would be a boon to all current Level 20 talents. Full Head of Steam could be micromanaged for consistent uptime making it much more reliable. Superior Gaskets could provide that attack speed bonus at all times for melee oriented builds. Experimental Steam Capacitors could pre-stack Pressure in preparation for sustained fire. This would remove the need to fire the Crank Gun arbitrarily in order to get the Full Head of Steam and Superior Gaskets buffs.

  • The act of cranking itself could also be made proportional to the amount the Crank Gun is fired to assist talents such as Full Head of Steam and Superior Gaskets, while making cranking less of a chore after using the Crank Gun briefly. This could be implemented in a Pressure stack decay mechanic, wherein you lose Pressure over time while firing rather than all stacks immediately. This way when using the Crank Gun in small bursts you don’t have to crank 4-5 times afterwards when using Full Head of Steam or Superior Gaskets.

Outcast Engineer has interesting utility but suffers from many small problems that emerge as larger issues within the context of the game.

Edit: fixing spelling/grammatical stuffs

37 Likes

tbh I’d also say a lot of his unique stuff is kinda gimmicky

being able to stack bombs is cool but how often do you get to rock 3 bombs at once? Piston power also cool but you’ve not much agency over when it’ll pop off.

Scavenged shot means giving up ranged dps for mediocre melee in comparison. The breakpoints are ok but if the class had smiter you wouldn’t even need to worry about it and the the talent itself has a pretty heft degree of anti-synergy with the rest of his kit since it encourages melee brawling on a character that wants to spend his time doing anything but (especially since all time not spent cranking/shooting is a pretty harsh dps loss). The scavenged shots also don’t do a whole lot of ranged sustain either unless you’re using a handgun.

The class is legit just a minigun and that’s about all he has going for him right now. Anything else he can do other classes just do better or equally while bringing other things to the table. Also, in a game like vermintide where things are very liable to get out of hand and get messy, a character that needs babysitting and doesn’t handle pressure well (pun unintended) needs to bring a lot more to the table than what is essentially an upgraded drakegun.

11 Likes

I’m gonna go ahead and make the suggestion that in the future, career DLCs should get a small beta, maybe a week long, and collect feedback from that. I think the career has been scrutinized harder than GK was and I think its weaknesses are 1) more apparent and 2) more of an issue. If this trend continues, I’m worried we might end up with future careers in even more precarious positions.

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I think that’s due to Engineer being far more experimental than GK

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True. Point still stands tho. If this is what we can expect going forward, I’d imagine that early feedback will be even more necessary.

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from me experience, the engineer works best if you don’t rely your ult on everything. ie it is not your default weapon.

i use flamethrower on my engineer with 2h hammer as melee. i basically play like a iron breaker except i’m not vulnerable to ranged special that the flamethrower cant hit. and for murdering hookrats and plaguemonks lol

works very well when played this way. the minigun is a backup weapon for me

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Fatshark, please listen to this feedback. The class is fun and unique, but he doesn’t scale well to higher difficulties. He really needs some other ways to survive in a melee focused game.

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Hello fellow dwarf enthusiast KrazedKirb. I think that your assessment of the state of the Outcast Engineer is accurate and relatable. I appreciate you composing your thoughts in such a precise way. Your potential solutions are interesting and I am looking forward to what happens to the Outcast Engineer in the future.

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Very well put OP. The assessment of this new career is dead on and its hard not to see these problems now if you didnt before. It would be in your best interest to read this everyone

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Sadly, I’m unsure what can be done to improve Outcast Engineer.
Might be an overstatement but I think he needs an overhaul, a redesign to improve his core gameplay loop, fix scaling issues and give him an identity bigger than just “minigun”.

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Why would you think low mobility means high skill? Needing more to perform same is penalty. In real game, low mobility ones always die and high mobility ones always clutch. That’s what happens in game.
What I’m saying is bardin need more mobility melee than 3 dodge count 1h weapon.
I expected this would come out with engineer though, coghammer… I don’t think this weapon is interesting. It’s just better version of previous 2h weapon.

I agree. And many suffer simillar problem. Ammo regen of WS because it’s tied to ult. Venting of pyro because DR talent sucks. That’s also why reapeter BH is bad.
But engineer is the worst kind of this. Ult runs out way too fast. At least, ult regen on hit should be added.
I don’t like crank mechanism. Too annoying and hard to use while kiting.
Make ult bar as normal. Fill up as time goes and you can fill with hit or getting hit by. You can boost ult regen while pressing R.

And another problem. Ammo regen. As ranged career, engineer need proper ammo regen. Crit per 4 bullet won’t make much difference unless your clip has 100 ammo. 1 free bullet per 5 melee kill is not that bad but doesn’t give you enough ammo alone. If it stacks, it would work.

Engineer has 2 ranged weapon though, both lacks ammo. As totally ranged focus career, engineer need much more sustainable range tools.

I dont get how we went from the height of WHC redesign, and many other good Talent changes in WoM, to new paid careers which Talent trees are more restrictive than the very most base careers.
GK has one Talent that works in more than half his lines, and Engi is screwed in so many ways that its hard to come up with solutions.

A Minigun that makes you fiddle with it every couple of moments just to have it ready to shoot is not worth it if Ranger can just unload his MP whenever he wants to while having unlimited ammo and stealth to get out of crap. Even if MP would get killed by a nerf Doom Ranger is still outclassing the Engi. The only thing Engi has over a Grudgeraker Ranger is monster damage, but I wouldnt even count that since you need to have an exorbitant amount of breathing room to unload at a monster with your crank. In those cases, you dont need high monster damage at all.

The worst thing is that apparently noone at FS saw/sees how dysfunctional Engis kit is and I also dont expect anything to change from how they handled GK feedback after his release. Ignore and move on to the next career.

Usually its fine if you release new stuff lacking, but not if you leave it completely alone afterward. Whats going to happen when the next career breaks the game? Do we need to wait for every career to release for a rebalance, or for some community member to write a mod like it had to happen for a weapon rebalance?

1 Like

The Engineer’s low mobility is one of his largest limiting factors in survivability and general usage. To make use of the Crank Gun you are basically immobile while your team has full mobility. It can lead to positioning problems on the side of the Engineer and general vulnerability. It makes it hard to reposition quickly to take advantage of potential choke points or enemy density. It requires quick forethought and risk assessment which I consider an aspect of player skill in order to better play the Engineer. I do agree to an extent that it is penalizing but I feel low mobility and high firepower is an integral part of the Engineer’s identity that makes sense, plus there are effective ways of playing around it. Weapon choice is a large part of this but it doesn’t always come down to dodge count. His shields can also be used as a means of forcing his way to a position and increasing survivability.

5 Likes

Some changes I’d like to see:

Make him able to maintain stacks even at full ult.

Lower the sound as that is a big problem. As you wrote about backstabs while shooting.

I’d like to see some improvement on movement with crank gun. My suggestion is to up the dodge count to 3-6 and make it so that you can activate it in the air without slowdown (which mean you can shoot bursts while moving at full speed by doing: jump > shoot until landing, repeat).
This would make for more fun and engaging action since it would improve his ability to kite which I feel is the only real problem he has and pretty much locks him into using shield weapons.

1 Like

They did a good job of making the Outcast Engineer fun to play, but the class does have issues. Due to the low skill level of his ult (just point and click) there’s only so much that can be done to improve it.

I think some quality-of-life changes for his steam pressure stacks would be nice. Letting it recharge slowly without cranking seems a good idea, or at least let it get some power from giving/taking damage. I think giving it a faster start to firing might also help with him being so vulnerable to everything breaking down, though maybe that intrudes on his class identity too much.

Maybe, though, bumping him to 125 HP (it does seem right with all the armor he’s wearing) and maybe giving him a passive where bombs are more commonly found would help.

2 Likes

Since this thread is new and vastly more focused I’d like to repeat my thoughts from multiple other threads. I like his gimmick and talents. Minus some really apparent bugs with Ablative Armor and Piston Power, his talent tree does it for me and has flexibility for builds that aren’t slaves to weapon choice and isn’t game breaking OP either.

As a horde clear specialist with low mobility, I’d like him to have more health. He doesn’t meet the same level of Glass-Cannon I’ve come to expect from other base 100 hp classes.

I disagree with players being able to freely get buffs from his level 20 talents when his ult bar is full. Managing buffs and ability recharge is part of the gameplay experiment. I do agree that pressure stacks and maybe the animation to get them could adjusted. Right now it’s clunky and immersive, but the game runs at arcade like speeds at Cataclysm and beyond. So with that in mind, I’d like it if the pressure stacks had a longer duration. Head Full of Steam in particular, but I’d be down with Experimental Capacitors lasting longer by virtue of this being a melee game, and my man needs to spend more time bonking rats with hammers then trying to hide and crank one out.

The crank mechanic also has the additional problem of interrupting the crank gun’s rate of fire, making the weapon even more difficult to use.

I would like it if when the gun gets going and reaches its max rate of fire, cranking did not immediately reset that. Gun has to wind up before it reaches full rate of fire, I think it’s only fair that it should have to wind down first before it stops firing at max speed.

The crank gun, itself, I’d like slightly better mobility. Better dodges than the drakegun (but not anything crazy like 99 dodges at 120%). And, maybe depending on the ult talent chosen, better move speed during aim-fire. Heck, you could take it a step further and allow free movement during right click and not slow the player down until after they start firing.

Gromnil-Plated Shots, I know I’m a broken record at this point, but faster rate of fire and cheaper cost of shots. It’s just a little too difficult to use as an anti elite weapon. You need sufficient time to prepare and charge up before the crank gun begins firing, it’s debatably effective versus patrols (which make themselves known and line up for your shots), but immediately crumbles under enemy pressure. This just isn’t a weapon you should bring out to deal with armor during hordes because it shoots too slowly.

Linked Compression Chambers isn’t bad. It’s bursty, handles unamored elites well, isn’t particularly overpowering, and the crank mechanic doesn’t completely stop its rate of fire, since it’s always at max fire. I think the cost of fire and ammo capacity is just right for it as far as how long you can shoot it, when you can shoot it, and how long your downtime would be while recharging it. And it functions just right with all pots letting it deal appropriate damage without being overpowered.

Innovative Ammo Hoppers is genuinely the best pick of this tree. The only thing I wish for, again, was that the rate of fire didn’t completely reset when you needed to crank.

My biggest criticism against Outcast Engineer is his utter inability to deal with pressure. I wish he didn’t require as much baby sitting during encounters he absolutely cannot deal with or ult, like ambushes or Convo’s final event.

5 Likes

Absolutely amazing post! I find that even though Engineer can be made to work at the highest levels, it just takes way more effort than other classes.

The major takeaway is that the risk/effort to reward ratio needs to be adjusted for the guy across all skill levels relative to other classes. He needs to put out more for what’s put in, and/or be safer to play. The “how” aspect is definitely up for discussion given the many different variables.

I do want to shoutout Fatshark for trying out a new and creative approach! Keep it up, and keep an open thread with the community to constantly try to make improvements. We’re often critical because we love the game and want it to be better. Coming up with new stuff like this is amazing to discuss over. Personally, I’ve been having so much fun playing Engineer, figuring him out, and have been playing him quite effectively. Our little dude just needs some adjusting in some areas that’s all.

PS. my biggest gripe (as mentioned in the post by Kirb) is loss of the “6th sense” when you’re firing away on the mini-gun and can’t hear anything from disablers to mobs creeping up on you. I do already have a habit of looking around excessively as a part of my playstyle, but it feels way more necessary on Engineer.

9 Likes

IMHO OE is the right character in the wrong game.
A static character in a game where movement is very important cannot be good, especially with a silly spawning system where enemies can materialize from our own farts.
Moreover while the crank gun can be an interesting gimmick , it’s just a horde clearer because of the amount of armoured foes in upper difficulties (and so it’s right to say that OE has no scaling).

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I’m only here to say that playing as UC, an Engi with drakefire pistol+His chaingun is FF hell. I absolutely hate that guy. Not as much as the dishonourable Knife-Ears, but still - quite close.

OE is my least favourite career in the game, by far. None of his talents are particulary interesting; and, the micromanagement of the crank gun and pressure stacks for mediocre buffs obtained from Superior Gaskets and Full Head of Steam just turn OE from underwhelming to irritating to play. Until they get rid of the shitty micromanagement, I’ll take a hard ‘pass’. He would be so much more fun with a grenade launcher instead of a crank gun and a long ult charge time that gives you a grenade every few minutes; and, if you could store up to 3 grenade so that you can save them and rain down hellfire in critical moments then he would be somewhat unique. All the other range careers are way better and way more fun, IMO.

2 Likes
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