Building Blocks of Builds
The first part of this guide covered the four specific roles you can
fulfill in combat, but roles are only one of many elements that can
ultimately be associated with a given build. Before giving a complete
breakdown of the other elements associated with builds, let’s
go over some of the basics of what a build is, how they’re
obtained and how they fit into the grand scheme of character
customization within the game.
Much like roles, builds are unlocked through normal gameplay, only in
this case new build slots become available depending on your level
rather than through the completion of Perks. The first additional build
becomes available at level 8, or roughly around the time you reach the
tail end of the Canada or Desert crisis zones. As each new build slot
opens up, a new tab will be added along the top of your main power
tray. To switch between active builds simply click on one of these
tabs, or alternately you can also press the associated keybind on your
keyboard (mapped to the F4-F8 keys by default).
You open up the build screen by pressing the “B”
key. Within this window you’ll see a number of elements that
can be associated with each build as described below:
– A dropdown
menu allows you to select which of the roles you want to associate with
a given build, as described above. Switching between these roles will
also add a small graphical element to the left side of your power tray
depending on whether you’re in an offensive, defensive or
build allows you to alter the layout of your powers on the power bar.
To do so, open your power window by pressing “P” on
your keyboard, and then simply drag and drop your powers in the order
you’d like associated with a given build.
- Passive Powers
Unlike most powers, passive powers are associated with specific roles
which will be indicated by a small icon on the bottom left of the main
power listing. As the name implies, these are powers that grant some
form of benefit simply by being slotted, though you can only have one
of these active per build. Examples of passive powers include things
like Regeneration, sorcery Auras or martial arts Focus powers.
- Blocking Powers
As with passive powers, you can also slot one block power per build.
These greatly enhance the inherent benefits of blocking during combat,
typically providing additional boosts to resistance of certain damage
types. Block powers are easy to overlook when purchasing new powers,
but they can really save your bacon when faced with overwhelming odds
in both PvE and PvP situations.
- Travel Powers
While you’ll be using your primary travel power through most
of the game, a second travel power becomes available at level 35 which
can then be associated with your various builds.
- Upgrades and Devices
– You can also select exactly which upgrades and devices
want to use with a given build, which can be handy if you want to shift
the focus of your stats to better fit with the role you’ve
selected. To do so, press the “I” key to open your
inventory and then slot the items you want associated with your build
as you normally would. This itemization layout will then be associated
with your new build, but keep in mind that you’ll need to
keep enough open inventory space for these items to land when switching
between builds unless you use the same items for each build you create.
– As you
open up additional costume slots, you can select which of them you want
to associate with a given build as well. This opens up some pretty cool
possibilities; for example you might have a defensive build focused on
Unarmed skills but then decide you want to
“Hulk-out” (or in this case I suppose that should
be “Grond-out”) and switch to a Might-focused
offensive build with a costume change that increases the overall size,
skin tone or even full costume of your character. There’s
loads of possibilities for how you can approach this, so be creative!
– Now that
you’ve selected what elements will define your new build, you
can give it a name which can either be something descriptive, or simply
something fun; it’s really up to you.
At first glance, putting new builds together might seem like a fairly
complex system, but it also provides an immense amount of flexibility
during combat. Since you can alter any of your previously created
builds any time you like, don’t be afraid to try different
approaches until you find what works best for your character. Altering
your current build is a simple matter of opening the build screen to
make whatever adjustments you’d like, and then the system
will automatically update based on any alterations you make.
A main restriction to keep in mind is that there is a short cooldown
associated with swapping between builds which ultimately helps retain a
certain degree of balance within the system. Otherwise, the sky is the
limit in terms of how you choose to construct each of your available
builds. Whether you choose to create a build that focuses on buffing
resistances or damage types is entirely up to you.