I recognize that lots of work is going into Darktide, and that a Pyro full rework is unlikely. So I’d like to suggest the following:
(new perk) Hot Blooded - Pyro gets +10% movement speed.
Exhaust trait - Removes overcharge and refunds cooldown 10% to 40% based on overcharge removed.
Blazing Echo - crits refund cooldown and do 20% more damage
The new perk is a defensive option that distinguishes this career from the other two, and keeps to the glass-cannon motif. It also helps a ranged caster kite.
I think most people play with the bonded flame (healing) trait, occasionally using blazing echo for fun. My tweaks just make the two traits more viable.
The pyromancer seems a bit flawed in design. The only playstyle that works well is a hybrid of ranged and melee glass cannon with ‘The Volans Doctrine’ maxing crit chance and attack speed to get to 55% crit chance with high overcharge.
Pyromancer has talents like ‘Ride the Fire Wind’, ‘Deathly Dissipation’, ‘Exhaust’, ‘On the Precipice’ which combine with the passive ability ‘Searing Focus’. This indicates she has build options intended to allow her to be more ranged-focused, but in practice, this is all mediocre compared to what Battle Wizard or almost any other ranged-focused career is capable of. Attempting to specialize Pyromancer in ranged attacks also leaves her extremely vulnerable in melee with the overcharge slowdown and no venting talents.
Level 25 ‘The Volans Doctrine’ is almost 100% necessary to any successful Pyro build. As you said, the ‘Blazing Echo’ and ‘Bonded Flame’ are about the only two talents one might alternate between. Besides that, the level 10 talents offer decent variety, but you’re more likely to get the most from ‘Spirit-Casting’ or ‘Martial Study’.
‘Ride the Fire Wind’ is interesting in concept, but I tend to favor melee and high overcharge since the passive ability ‘Critical Mass’ is this career’s greatest strength. Pyromancer will play closer to unchained with more attack speed and crit focus than power.
Giving her ‘The Volans Doctrine’ as a passive ability almost feels necessary but I don’t want this class to simply be Unchained but with criticals and attack speed instead of power and tankiness.
Instead, I’d suggest giving her a passive ability that grants no movement slowdown from overcharge and 20% more room to build up overcharge. Since she relies on high overcharge to perform well having 20% more room to build up overcharge gives her some ranged potential and means she can’t rack up overcharge to the max to get melee crits as easily. No movement speed slowdown from overcharge gives her some defensive leeway for avoiding getting surrounded when dealing damage, but keeps the attack speed slowdown from overcharge. This way she can choose between ‘The Volans Doctrine’ and the other level 25 talents without becoming too vulnerable to being surrounded.
As I understand it, this career seems intended to be a balance between the more ranged and melee that can specialize in either, but only works really well when you use ‘The Volans Doctrine’ and stay at high overcharge constantly while maxing crit chance and attack speed to capitalize on the passive ability ‘Critical Mass’.
My main issue with Pyro is just how low-impact her career skill is (barring the meme crit-fishing talent). The way the skull just stops after the first armored enemy it hits is pretty terrible.
Sometimes you get a lucky pinball bounce with it, meaning you hit an armored enemy only after you’ve taken out a lot of unarmored foes first.
I suggested the trait additions specifically because the F-power is lackluster. My way it’s either buff the strength with blazing echo, get health, or lower the cooldown.
maybe rework the F to be something else than a less powerfull waystalker ult? like have the skull stand in the air and throw fire bolts around it like a tower or have more bouncing bonus like reset the damage output everytime it bounce of a wall so you can try to do several hit on a target by having a wall in front and behind.