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After playing RoR2 for a while, I'm hitting this wall whenever I try to boot up the Artificer.

She's the only character that lacks any kind of mobility or defensive power, and instead has a ton of cooldown-based attack powers, the intent being that she unloads all of her attacks on a target and kills them before they can damage her. She's also known for being a "boss slayer".

However, a full rotation of her powers is unlikely to deal more than 50% of the boss's HP, and that's after including her melee-range flamethrower.

In most instances, I'm finding myself getting killed during the boss fights on the first and second levels on Normal, and I can't seem to progress more than that. I'm not sure if it's a lack of experience either, as when I play the melee Mercenary, I can survive several loops without breaking a sweat.

When the artificer isn't able to burst down a target before it becomes a threat, what does she do to survive?

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  • "lacks any sort of movement skill" - What about her jetpack, and Ion Surge? Commented Mar 20, 2021 at 2:40
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    @BlueRaja-DannyPflughoeft The jetpack is only useful for slowing her descent, which actually isn't a great tool considering the jitteriness of jumping up-and-down serves better to avoid projectiles. Ion Surge is only rewarded after earning an Artificer-only achievement, and not all that relevant for advice for someone who's not doing well as her. Commented Mar 20, 2021 at 21:02

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The general gameplay goal for playing Artificer is similar to the rest of the cast, you just have to play it even more carefully - never stop moving, and be efficient with your skill usage. For Artificer, this means always jumping and strafing even while unloading your damage into your target. In addition, you need to juggle your cooldowns carefully to ensure you have as little "downtime" as possible - if you're stuck at any point with all your skills on cooldown, you're doing something wrong. The pattern I like to follow is -

  • Unload all four fireballs at just under top speed
  • Fully charge a nano-bomb and throw it
  • Fireballs are now recharged, unload those at just under top speed
  • Unload flamethrower on the target (this restricts your sprinting but you can still jump and strafe for safety)
  • Repeat

This pattern generally should mean you always have damage to output. You'll need to practice also throwing ice walls out for more damage/buying more time for cooldowns/controlling crowds in between your regular cycle of skill usage.

It should also be noted that your top priority early-game with Artificer will be to get movement items - Hopoo Feather, Wax Quail and Paul's Goat Hoof are extremely important, more so than for other characters. Once you can move properly, survivability will be the next priority (Personal Shield Generator, etc.), then damage items. Artificer has plenty enough damage to deal with early game enemies, so those items are a bit lower priority until you reach the mid-game.

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    "Mobility is definitely a problem so master the basics, invest heavily on improving them, and don't focus on your strengths."- Excellent advice. I realize now that my problem is that I use my powers to work around my weak foundation (with characters like the Mercenary who don't need to dodge with shuffles and jumps), and that just doesn't work with slower characters like the Artificer. Commented Mar 30, 2021 at 15:38

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