I have some doubts about the reasoning behind the unchained damage mechanics.
For all other classes (and careers), taking damage from getting hit is its own punishment. With the unchained, taking damage also results in heat. At first glance this would seem to be a benefit, since oh more heat = more damage output, and I took less health damage!

Fine idea, but for all other existing wizard careers, heat buildup is a problem to avoid. Venting causes damage. Think about it, it’s so critical to vent heat, that you have to provide a limit to the behavior by turning it into a damage mechanic.

Now I realize that there are bugs and issues with the way unchained handles heat, venting causes damage which feeds back into heat, heat slows you down etc. Those are known bugs, and I’m sure they are beating interns with sticks night and day so they can code fixes faster. That’s not the point I want to make.

I’m just wondering if it is a viable class mechanic period. Even without the bugs, if you are taking heat from hits, even if you are getting huge melee advantages from being hot, is it still a viable mechanic for a class that was designed around heat being a primary limit?

In a heavy melee, you can’t avoid taking damage. So you can’t avoid taking heat. However the normal process of dumping heat, venting, is not available in melee combat. You have to swap to a staff to vent. Sure you are in effect taking double damage from venting (because you already took damage for the hit once), but exploding is an all or nothing proposition.

Don’t get hot is sort of silly, since the point of the class is heat management. In order to get any melee benefits, you NEED a certain level of heat.
Don’t get hit is also sort of silly, Better melee classes already get hit plenty, and they have health, and armor, and better melee weapon options.

There are talents for dumping heat, yes. Primarily the class talent (explodowizard), but also blocking etc. But these also have mechanical and gameplay limitations (stamina, concentration). It still comes back to the issue that the only way to rapidly (emergency) vent heat is to switch to a staff weapon. Usually in melee, which means you are shortly going to explode from 50% of damage being taken as heat. Frankly health is easier to manage, you can get temporary health from kills, or down a potion. Dumping heat was designed to be a limiter for the class, and I don’t think that has been addressed for the unchained yet.

It feels like there are some tools missing for the unchained. Perhaps adding the ability to vent while holding a melee weapon. (Maybe even add a talent that throws out a smaller burst of aoe damage). Or adding the staff weapon traits that allow some heat dispersal on crits to apply to wizard melee items. Or even talents that allow some heat dispersal on kills or crits.

Of course, maybe just fixing the bugs will be enough. But it still feels like the mechanics for heat management are lackluster, because they are not taking into account that heat is the primary limitation for the class.


Disclaimer I haven’t played Legend. Blocking will vent heat with most of the overheads in the game venting most of if not all of your heat bar. I’ve played almost entirely unchained since hitting level 20 and would suggest maybe being more careful with your action skill and when you use it, (I rarely use it for damage, either for a pick up on an ally or as an emergency vent). I still think she certainly has issues but it’s very rare that I explode outside of being grabbed by specials.

the unchained is one of my favourite classes to play. 50% reduction in damage coupled with temp shields on kills + natural bond = i can vent most of the time without much worry. i can choose to go full ranged or melee, doesn’t matter. my ability is meant to clear overcharge when i hit red, or during frantic moments when someone or myself is surrounded by enemies.

one of the best things is fighting bosses. you spam the boss, boss aggros on you, blocking a big hit from the boss CLEARS all overcharge instantly, and u can happily spam again. same with chaos warriors or 1 shot wonders like stormvermin or those chaos half naked dudes with a big axe.

if you are taking hits… i have to say you are playing it wrong. any melee hit you take is a mistake, and should be avoided. the fact that stray hits can bleed 50% into overcharge is, to me, a very acceptable tradeoff. if you are deliberately holding high overcharge just to buff your melee… well that’s kinda risky i feel.

i disagree that health is easier to manage. every bit of health damage is attrition that when accumulated, can lead to wipes because of not enough hp to handle bosses.

just sharing my opinion and playstyle! i’m sure there are many ways to play her unchained class.


I totally agree with the way Mookanana described the playstyle. When I play Unchained, it’s an exercise in very active and adaptive resource management for the team. She doesn’t have auras that benefit your teammates, but what she DOESN’T need contributes greatly, and the fact that you can pinch-hit in just about any role when it is necessary makes her a ‘blast’ to play. I played her extensively in closed beta and started with Kruber in the full release, but have my Unchained sitting @level 18 now, and I cannot wait to start incorporating specific items into my build because of how much resource management she has. Excellent mechanic, in my opinion, though it probably is very much at risk the more power creep and itemization we have access to as a player-base.

Truly a sleeper powerhouse.

(Current favorite setups: Sword + Beamstaff, Mace + any other staff except the flamestorm.)
Can anyone sell me on the dagger or flamesword? They seem like worse versions of the two above weapons for most applications…
The issues I have with Sienna in general is that a lot of staves aren’t particularly usable in Champion+ due to friendly fire issues.

Dagger is fast, first heavy attack has a really wide arc with strong knockback and the second heavy is an strong AP stab. You can push cancel to get the stab out first, and apparently you get a bit of a charge with the stab, though I’m not really noticing it.

I personally like the mace still, even though it feels a little bit slower than the 1H mace in V1.

The dagger is her fastest option - comparable to dual daggers on the elf. It has a charge-attack that ignites through shields, with the followup decent against armour, and a push-stab that propels you forward like the spear of old. It actually works, notable speed increase if you really need to get somewhere.
Flamesword I find a bit lacking, but it seems to retain some damage against any kind of armour, making it probably a solid choice that is rather target-agnostic. I believe it’s first charge also goes through shields.

Blocking is fine for single or two or three targets. In a horde or surprise situation, the weapons available to unchained aren’t really noteworthy in terms of blocking potential. Maybe the mace.

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It is risky to hold onto the heat. But without the heat, you might as well be playing any other melee class with better weapons and melee talents. With temporary health on kills/crits and a potion ready at hand, it’s quite easy to manage health, I would say more so than heat. To drop heat you need to use a talent, a blocking mechanic, or swap to a ranged weapon and all that withdrawing from melee or being in melee with a ranged weapon entails.

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Speaking of friendly fire, ever get yelled at for being overwhelmed and exploding in a scrum and doing FF which “causes” a wipe?

I like the dagger. it is fast, and better, fast heavy attacks. But the blocking is very iffy on it.

A surprising amount of people are ignorant of unchaineds mechanics. But unchained is usually the last one standing in a common wipe if heat is well managed, so that balances out. Well, ironbreaker not withstanding.
Actually, I’ve found the best way to play unchained is to not go for the melee at all, sadly.
Yes, I can lay into a horde with my dagger, or stab one of the tougher targets, and I occasionally will. Prevents friendly fire.
But the melee bonus on high heat, in my book, is absolutely not worth the risk - I’d rather play unchained as a weaker battle mage with far more durability, and occasionally a heat reset when blocking a chaos knight.

Daggers blocking has a very narrow angle, that can be a negative in hordes.

I’ve been using almost entirely the mace with unchained, mace and conflagration staff for CC. Getting +stamina on some of your gear is definitely helpful for hordes as well as stamina cost reduction. I find that if I’m not fully surrounded, most of the time I can push into a conflagration AOE, the knockdown/back from which will let my stamina recover.

I use the beam staff blast for similar. I have been using the mace recently, but I just can’t bring myself to appreciate it. It is very slow. But it is better for blocking. But building around a block mechanic doesn’t say much for the melee capability of the class.

I feel compelled to point out that a melee class that works better as a ranged class is a problematic melee class.

I should point out that I consider pyromancer to be better than melee than the unchained due to the crit mechanics and synergies. I don’t consider pyromancer to be a GOOD melee class, just a smidge better than unchained.

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It’s why I want Fatshark to fix and reintroduce the push parts of the Unchained passive. Pushes cost less stamina and costs overcharge at high overcharge level. It’ll give the Unchained a bit strong melee CC and an alternate way to manage overcharge.

I’ve seen suggestions for heavy attacks to cost overcharge instead and have like a DoT or something, but I’m not really a fan of that because I feel that DoTs in a game like this makes the class using the DoTs slower and unresponsive in terms of reaction time and TTK.

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Wizard is already a DOT class (fire). I agree it doesn’t need more. I’d prefer to see the ability to vent with a melee weapon equipped, and have that do a push back or something.

dagger is the fastest weapon to switch to and hit something with, great when u need that instant stun or to smack away mobs that are pestering u while trying to cast at a boss.

i actually use the flamesword only. i find that it’s heavy attacks are a no brainer, and it feels like a fire whip that has a small explosion centered on the target when the first heavy attack in the heavy attack chain hit. the explosions can clear hordes well. heavy spam on heavy units like the chaos warrior is so easy and feels like i’m dancing around them when i do it. my only issue is that light attacks are slow, and slow you down too unlike dagger.

i almost exclusively use heavy attacks on it. the rest of the time is pewpewing with staff, unless i’m forced to melee like in the sewers raised circular platform with no wall to my back.

For all the block-overcharge management the yea-sayers are touting in this thread they seem to ignore the minimal effect all that bar dancing has on actually winning a fight. One missed block, one grab, one unblockable and you’re a liability. Other classes are killing or chain-stunning the boss while you tread that dangerous line, and her melee output even while hot doesn’t compare to much safer and better choices like merc/footknight halberd (which also come with kruber’s high utility).

I tried hard to like her but the risk-reward isn’t there.

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Well… yeah. You shouldn’t play her like she’s an actual melee class. Sure, she can survive the melee, but that doesn’t stop her from being mainly a caster.
Unless they change her level 15 talents to something significant that actually allows her to slice through enemies, that will probably not change.
Well, both her level 15s and level 25s need help.

She’s not melee at all. She’s a tank,like Ironbreaker. Most ironbreakers I see and the way I play as well is dual pistols + axe/hammer & shield(I prefer the axe variant,because he has enough cc. axe makes killing chaos warriors easy)- constant aoe knockback/knockdown with pistols secondary attack and shield bash, then proceed to killing off the helpless vermin. Whenever I play IB I usually have most ranged kills due to burn & picking off stragglers with the pistols.

Unchained is a more versatile version of IB. She doesn’t have hit negation,but 50% reduced dmg is an awful lot, makes mistakes a lot more forgiving. Her versatility comes from her staffs- burst/cc/dot/sniper - the fact that in a perfect scenario you can do a combo like-get to nearly max heat by using staff,block a heavy attack to clear OC,use staff again until you’re near max heat- fire bomb to clear it,go to max heat again…that’s 3 almost full uses of staff firepower without stopping or needing to vent. Mix in a conc potion and it’s insane. I also tend to use firebolt/flamethrower staff- both with 2% ability recharge on crit. With a measly total 5% crit I still charge my ability super fast thanks to both staffs being rapid fire.

If you’re having problems with block- take her ability that gives 40% faster stamina regen on charged attack and a +2 stamina trinket and a +2 stamina on melee weapon. For melee I usually go for flame sword, because 1st charged attack is a mighty knockback with surprisingly long range +dot and the second charged attack is a nice,ap sweep that’s easy to headshot with and that also does dot. With that,when I’m surrounded by a bunch of stormvermin and a horde I just do 1st charged attack/block all the time- trash dies from dot,then I do 2nd charged attack to finish the stormvermin. Block is never-ending if you manage to dodge some of the stormvermin blows or stagger the buggers so they won’t hit you at all. Also,I can’t stress this enough,the 1st charged attack has VERY,VERY good range,test it out(in a game,doesn’t show on dumies of course) and you’ll be surprised.(and,as I understand, the dot from 1st charged attack is affected by her passive,so if you do 1st charged attack on high OC then you cook rats mighty quick)

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