Choosing a path for my Cannon Engineer (Torchlight 2) / "The Marine". [Solved]

Hello there,

I've got a Cannon Engineer in Torchlight 2 and am trying to figure out how to skill. I've slogged my way to level 35 with basically just Heavy Lifting and Coup de Grace and one point in Cannon Blast for killing stuff.

Now, I wanted to go with Fusilade but it seems really weak, at least right out of the box, certainly in comparison to Cannon Blast out of the box.

My idea was to go with Overload and Fusilade (electric and fire damage) and get Fire and Spark to boost both. Overload to have a useful skill to spend charges on and also have electric attacks and Fire and Spark to boost both, of course.

Is that a sensible idea? Or is Fusilade going to remain weak in comparison to Cannon Blast?

Which stat should I focus on? Strength would boost Coup de Grace and my attack power and thus secondarily my Fusilade damage, I guess... I hope. Strangely, the skill says "X% of weapon DPS". Does that actually mean my weapon's DPS with no regard for my stats or is that X% of my damage output with normal attack instead?

Or would I be better off putting my points into Focus, as that's supposed to boost magic damage and I guess Fusilade's fire damage would be magic damage... or would it not be boosted since it doesn't have its own damage but takes it from my weapon?

Oh, and do you have a different idea for spending charges with? I tried Forcefield but a) its casting animation is really long and easily disrupted, wasting all charges and b) it only lasts 30 seconds. I'd rather put more points into Aegis of Fate which lasts theoretically forever.

Man, it's bad when you don't know the actual mechanics behind the descirptions. They never give me enough information to properly make up my mind... :-(

Any help would be appreciated!

Captcha: "the end is near". Not yet, I'm only in the Brood Hive. No idea how much more there is.

Just cannon blast, and then some defensive stuff on the side because you can. Pure strength is really cool, because tons of damage is fun.

So, stuff to focus on:

Strength
Heavy Lifting
Coup de Grace
Aegis of Fate (seriously, this thing is amasing)
Healbot (at least 5 points for mana recovery, more if you have enough points for it)
Any leftover points can go to Bulwark for more defense.

Keep Cannon Blast at a low rank for as long as you can. While more points do increase the damage, it's much better if you can spam it literally endlessly.

Charges and Fusilade can be ignored entirely that way. Cannons are way powerful anyway. Do keep an eye on vit though. Some cannons require vit to use.

This is all coming from someone who hasn't seen act 3 yet, so I could be wrong.

Greyah:
Just cannon blast, and then some defensive stuff on the side because you can. Pure strength is really cool, because tons of damage is fun.

So, stuff to focus on:

Strength
Heavy Lifting
Coup de Grace
Aegis of Fate (seriously, this thing is amasing)
Healbot (at least 5 points for mana recovery, more if you have enough points for it)
Any leftover points can go to Bulwark for more defense.

Keep Cannon Blast at a low rank for as long as you can. While more points do increase the damage, it's much better if you can spam it literally endlessly.

Charges and Fusilade can be ignored entirely that way. Cannons are way powerful anyway. Do keep an eye on vit though. Some cannons require vit to use.

This is all coming from someone who hasn't seen act 3 yet, so I could be wrong.

Well, if I were to focus on physical damage with Cannon Blast, then I might as well get Tremor, right? Which reduces enemies' physical resistance and knocks 'em back? I know you say I shouldn't worry about the charges, but it seems like such a waste not to get at least one skill that makes use of them.

Also, if I get tons of strength, should I still skill Fire and Spark for Coup de Grace? Or does Fire and Spark not work on Coup de Grace, do you know that?

Skeleon:
Well, if I were to focus on physical damage with Cannon Blast, then I might as well get Tremor, right? Which reduces enemies' physical resistance and knocks 'em back? I know you say I shouldn't worry about the charges, but it seems like such a waste not to get at least one skill that makes use of them.

Also, if I get tons of strength, should I still skill Fire and Spark for Coup de Grace? Or does Fire and Spark not work on Coup de Grace, do you know that?

I forgot about Tremor. Tremor is great, get it.

About Fire and Spark: only if after the things I named, you still have skillpoints left. It probably does work on Coup, but if all goes well, you'll do so much damage everything dies before you get the chance to even stun them.

What difficulty are you playing on, if I may ask?

Greyah:
I forgot about Tremor. Tremor is great, get it.

About Fire and Spark: only if after the things I named, you still have skillpoints left. It probably does work on Coup, but if all goes well, you'll do so much damage everything dies before you get the chance to even stun them.

What difficulty are you playing on, if I may ask?

Right, I thought so. Tremor is similar to Overload in application but more physical wheras Overload is more electrical, but both need Charges for their actual potential.

Hm, I guess. I mostly wanted to focus on Fire and Spark because of Fusilade but if it really is no competition for Cannon Blast, then FaS becomes less important as well.

Elite, but softcore. I've reached a point where surviving hits becomes really difficult and stunning and Coup de Grace is my best weapon, really, which is why I want to choose my path now so I can stop with the self-imposed handicap. I've got 155 stat points and 25 skill points waiting to be invested.

Alright, in case anybody is interested: I think I worked out a nice build. Currently playing on Elite as mentioned above. I call him "The Marine" because not only does the guy always remind me of an Ultramarine from Warhammer 40K in the loading screens and whatnot, he also uses a giant gun, stomps the ground, knocks enemies around and so on.

Cannon Blast: 1. For now. Will eventually be boosted to 15. Main attack.
Healing Bot: 15. Especially thanks to the Mana-regeneration quite essential.
Heavy Lifting: 15. Faster attack speed and stunning. Essential.
Coup de Grace: 15. In combination with Heavy Lifting enormously powerful.
Storm Burst: 1. For now. May eventually be boosted to the maximum of 15 as it provides a second electricity attack, allows for mana leeching etc.. Yes, this works with a cannon and quite well so; it's not a melee skill as such. And it grants useful added mobility for getting out of tight corners or even being extremely aggressive! One tactic I use is to move into a mob of enemies, use Tremor (see below) and then storm right out of there, often taking one or two enemies along for the ride. Easy pickings from there.
Fire and Spark: 15. Both Coup de Grace and Storm Burst benefit from this.
Bulwark: 1. May boost with left-over points.
Charge Domination: 1. I already get charges, but having a full charge bar every now and then is nice.
Tremor: 15. The damage appears to be bugged sometimes despite having charges available, but everything else about this skill is great. I hope they fix the problems with it in the next patch. Essential skill in my opinion and the only charge-waster.
Aegis of Fate: 1. For now, may boost with left-over points. It's a nice little health-boost but I prefer skills that allow me to avoid getting hit altogether because the boost is not that big.
Charge Reconstitution: 1. Similar to Aegis of Fate and Charge Domination, I like getting a wee bit of a bonus from it. But most of the healing comes from the bot and my pet.

As for stats, I put 50 points into Dexterity for a reasonable chance for critical hits. It has quickly diminishing returns, though, so putting more into it may not be advisable. Apart from that, I mostly focus on Strength and to a much lesser degree Vitality. All of my magic damage skills are dependent on weapon damage, so putting many points into Focus seems useless. Is that correct?

Right, last but not least: Are there any "mechanical" pets I could get? The closest I have found so far is a Mimic. But getting different fish is difficult, especially the ones of the permanent variety.
I recently unlocked a trader for spells, just like I first had to unlock the socket guys and the enchanter. Is there a trader for fish later on in the game, maybe one you have to unlock first?

Oh yeah, and here's the calculator I used: http://torchlight2armory.com/skill-calc?i=3#bPOJna7Htu1yF3uMwEjd48KoHeEKOxiYHX1y

 

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