After a quick look at the ‘Engineer’ class of Torchlight II, I wonder why this wasn’t my primary choice from the get-go. Now I’m stuck levelling my 31 Berserker when I know for a fact I could have been enjoying a wrench-wielding woman instead… It seems the engineer mixes the best of the Destroyer and Vanquisher classes of Torchlight offering bots to help you out in solo situations while giving you the flexibility to smash enemies down at the same time. If you like your micro management and enjoy setting up before a big fight rather than dashing in with yours eyes set on untimely death, then the Engineer may be for you! We’ll be building this character with pure brute force in mind. Strength and Dexterity will be our focuses here enabling us to dish out the damage and land critical hits more often for even more mana charged explosions.
Before delving into the skill trees, just note this: The ‘Engineer’ is seemingly the hybrid class of Torchlight II. One tree covers heavy AoE damage while another covers ranged attacking and support through summons. The final skill tree managed to turn the Engineer into a damage absorbing tank with fairly low soloing ability. Take your pick before you delve in too deep.
- Flame Hammer
- Your stating skill is enough to make you fall in love with the engineer from the start. A powerful downward strike erupts flames as you lift your weapon away from the bloody, singed mess of Kobolds on the ground. What’s better is a single charge can be spent for additional eruptions!
- Seismic Slam
- Think ‘Thunder Clap’ but with fire. You’ll slow the enemies around you while dishing out damage at the same time. It seems like a good way to slow your own death if you happen to have monsters covering every angle of your body.
- Ember Hammer
- This uses electrical damage to swoop a 270 degree swing into your enemies. Confused? Ember refers to a type of fuel in Torchlight 2 and not some reference to fire. It’s not Flame Hammer V2.
- Use this to charge into battle leaping into the air and slamming into wherever your cursor sat beforehand. Then let all hell break loose with your giant wrench and the fiery wake from the impact of your feet – they presumably exploded.
- Ember Reach
- Dragging the single target within range of yourself you accumulated charges determine how likely you are to stun the target with the skill. Save all your charges for a champion or boss fight and you’re got a nice streak of stuns lined up for your use.
- Storm Burst
- Blast yourself forward and knock everyone else out of your way. Not a bad way to regain mana. But not a good way to dish out area damage.
- “8 radiating magma fissures to seek out your enemies” – Well, if that didn’t seal the deal already, I don’t know what will.
- Heavy Lifting
- A constant base 2% speed improvement with your two-handed weapon isn’t a bad deal at all. Throw in the increased stun stance and you’ve got a pretty good passive if you’re adamant on keeping that brute of a weapon
- This gives you a base 2.5% chance to charge your weapon with the ability to expel extra damage as you strike for the next 10 seconds. The percentage is low and your attacks are slow, so lets avoid this like the plague.
- Coup de Grace
- Smash a stunned target and you’ll deal damage equal to 3x that of your strength. Get this. Get this now!
- Healing Bot
- A little deployable robot that heals you every 12 seconds over the course of 4 – if you’re in range. You’re certainly not going to need this unless playing online during the later levels with a full group, and certainly no good as a first skill point spend. Dodge it.
- Blast Cannon
- A fast piercing shot from your two-handed cannon. I guess you know what this skill tree focuses on! Get this regardless of your weapon type and keep a hand cannon set to your second load-out. That way you can smash through a corridor more easily when you come across one.
- Spider Mines
- The name says it all. You let loose a trio of spider mines to hunt down and explode all over their chosen pray. They have a small chance to deal 33% more damage and add a stun. They sound fun but not all that damaging. Lets skip it.
- Gun Bot
- It’s the flacette trap from the original Torchlight! This 1-minute summon acts as a sentry gun shooting 5 rounds per second into unsuspecting foes. Get this and spread the bullet love.
- Shock Grenade
- Extremely low damaging grenade with potential for 2 more if a charge is used. This could be great for AoE builds to stun a large group before going in for the kill(s).
- A channelled spell firing a rocket barrage from your cannon. This picks up the slack from the gun-users AoE potential. Sink enough points into this to grab the Tier 2 bonus of additional rockets and splash damage.
- A minion with a lengthy cooldown aids the battle by smashing down your enemies. You’ll only unlock this at level 42 so you’ll have plenty of time to think whether you really need the help.
- A base 2% boost to your armour value and damage taken. Not bad if you’re planning to go all-in with melee.
- Fire and Spark
- “The spark to makes things work… and fire to make things die”. A base 5% increase to your Electric and Fire damage. Can’t go wrong here if you’ve been building focus for your robots. It’s just a bit of compensation for that I guess.
- Charge Domination
- A 3% chance to gain a single charge from a kill. Considering the amount of enemies you’ll face in quick succession, this doesn’t sound half bad. But it can only trigger once every 3 seconds – if at all. I’d say avoid it.
- Shield Bash
- If you’re planning to use a shield then this skill is for you. This handy AoE charge knocks foes back and deals damage 5x that of your shield armour value – which is usually pretty high. It’s Tier unlocks boost that to a whopping 12.5x damage later on. A must have for the aspiring hybrid tank.
- At level 7 you can use this skill to shield yourself from incoming attacks until it breaks under pressure. Use it with a full charge meter and you’ll boost its defences a further 50% for each charge (max of 250%). What’s better is that it can affect allies too. It’s the ultimate tank skill!
- 20% of weapon DPS around you doesn’t sound all that useful. I’d just swing the Fire Hammer and get it over with.
- Dynamo Field
- Just like Overload except this one awards you charge boosts for each enemy hit. Much better!
- If it wasn’t for this skills huge 24 meter range I’d skip it in a heartbeat. But a 24 meter radius blast with decent damage and knockback sounds useful during hectic mob-heavy boss fights.
- Fire Bash
- You take a shot with your shield and fire a blast with 3x the force of your shield to knock back enemies and burn them afterward. Again though, it’s a straight line. I can’t see a whole lot of use for this, especially at level 35.
- Immobilization Copter
- A deployable drop that slows everything about it’s 3 target enemies. 3 debuffed enemies is sadly really too little to care about.
- Sword and Board
- 20% of your shield value becomes a boost to your attack. 20% is a nice amount for a single point but don’t expect it to rise in 20% increments with each point.
- Aegis of Fate
- What’s with the base 2% skills? Regardless, the chance to negate 200% + 100 damage after being hit isn’t all that bad should it actually work. The knockback resistance would be nice too, but only during a boss battle where it’s even more unlikely to activate. I’d avoid it.
- Charge Reconstitution
- A healthy burst of HP returns to you whenever you use your charges. You’ll be using them; and taking damage. Get this if you want to live.
It seems as if the Engineer is the all-round class of Torchlight II. One tree focuses on a single 2-handed melee weapon for heavy AoE slams, the next focuses on gun use with backup from robots and at the final tree turns the Engineer into possibly a greater tank than the Berserker. They all sound good on paper and all perform with great fun in practice. I can’t even make up my mind here, but with the Berserker tank already being well on his way to Torchlight fame, I’ll centre this guy around his fire wrench for now. What a great class!