Outriders is the latest drop-in, drop-out co-op title to hit the market, coming to Xbox Game Pass on day one and every other platform on April 1. In this looter shooter, you are caught up in a war on the planet Enoch, which holds the last of humanity, but has also devastated both the environment and the people. With new powers at your disposal, you must destroy what's around you in order to solve the mysteries of Enoch.
The player can achieve this in four main different ways thanks to four classes — Devastator, Pyromancer, Trickster, and Technomancer — each with its own powers and skill trees. Whether you like to play a tank or like to take on a support role, there's a class for you.
How to choose your class
You won't be able to choose your class in Outriders right away. You have to go through the prologue first, which explains the story setup, including how the humans got to Enoch and how you ended up in the middle of an all-out war with superpowers. Once you finish the prologue, you'll be given the option to choose between one of the four classes. It's worth noting that once you choose a class, you won't be able to change it unless you start over with a new character.
Outriders classes explained Devastator
The Devastator is the close-range tank of the group. They do the most damage facing enemies head-on instead of from afar. This class is for the player that likes to run into the action without worrying about silly things like cover.
The power set relies on a lot of ground-pounding and gravity-based abilities. The first ability you get, Earthquake, releases a shockwave on the ground ahead of you, dealing a lot of damage. Other abilities like Golem fortify you against a lot of damage, allowing you to absorb a lot of the damage you'll likely take. If you've seen the image from the trailers that involve impaling enemies with a spike that comes from the ground, that comes from Devastator abilities. The melee skill infects bleed on enemies.
Each of the classes has a healing effect, as you learn, but Devastator is the easiest to use. You'll gain health back simply by standing next to an enemy you kill. This makes it super easy to jump in and then jump out during combat without worrying about death.
There are three different skill trees for the Devastator:
- Vanquisher: For people who like using weapons in close-quarters combat, you'll want to check out the Vanquisher track. It improves overall weapon damage, and certain perks decrease the physical damage enemies deal or improve magazine size.
- Warden: If you want to increase your health as much as possible and give your teammates buffs, including a reflective shield that can protect you and your allies from bullets, you might want to try the Warden skill tree. You'll get a lot of passive bonuses as well.
- Seismic Shifter: If you want to play Devastator but don't actually like getting up close and personal, the Seismic Shifter is for you. This increases damage output, along with the length of bleed effects.
Outriders classes explained Pyromancer
As you can guess based on the name, the Pyromancer is all about fire and devastation. These are for medium-range players who want to just wreck the environment around them. This class is especially good with taking out multiple enemies at once with abilities like Heatwave, which summons a wave of fire in front of the player, and Thermal Bomb, which target a single enemy, which can then explode and deal damage to other enemies around them.
The Pyromancer melee attack applies an area of burn effect on enemies, but if you sprint, you can turn it into a ground slam that'll ignite enemies in the way.
The Pyromancer also has a healing effect, although it's more complicated than the Devastator. Marking enemies with your class ability — a.k.a. setting them on fire or using another ability on them so a little red skull appears above their health bar — allows you to gain health when they die. There are other abilities here as well that allows you to drain an enemy's health.
There are three different skill trees for the Pyromancer:
- Ash Breaker: If you love the marking system here, you'll love the Ash Breaker skill tree. This primarily helps you up the effects of marking enemies, and can help you deal more damage.
- Fire Storm: If you just like setting things on fire (in Outriders, of course), there's Fire Storm. This skill set increases skill and burn damage.
- Tempest: Similar to Fire Storm, Tempest increases explosion damage. However, it also makes you more of a tank on the battlefield, with abilities that increase your healing prowess and more.
Outriders classes explained Trickster
The Trickster is probably the most unique class in Outriders' arsenal. Being a Trickster allows you some degree of control over space and time. This is where you get teleportation and the ability to slow downtime, among other skills. If you enjoy playing as a scout or similar class where you have to hop into the action and then get out, the Trickster is your best bet. (This is also my preferred class.)
For example, the Temporal Blade slices up enemies in front of you while slowing them down. The Slow Trap is similar, marking enemies with the Slow effect in a wide area. Be sure to also equip Hunt the Prey, which allows you to teleport behind an enemy of your choosing. Using Trickster abilities also tends to grant you shield bonuses.
The melee attack stuns enemies in front of you and slows them down. To heal, you just need to kill enemies at close range. However, healing also grants you shield buffs.
There are three skill trees for the Trickster:
- Assassin: If you like to handle weapons on the battlefield, check out the Assassin tree. There are a lot of bonuses for shotguns and assault rifles, along with magazine increases and overall damage buffs.
- Harbinger: This is the tanky version of the Trickster class. The skills on this tree grant you buffs to your shield, armor, and overall health.
- Reaver: For those who want to go all-in on what the Trickster has to offer power-wise, check out the Reaver tree. It offers buffs to your overall anomaly power and increases your movement speed.
Outriders classes explained Technomancer
If you just like weapons, then you'll enjoy the Technomancer. It's not as flashy as some of the other classes, but it does allow you to summon different weapons out of thin air, which has its own perks. You gain access to grenades, proximity mines, turrets, and other elemental effects like ice, decay, and toxic. It's also the closest Outriders has to a support class, since a lot of your abilities involve giving your allies buffs or healing. If you prefer to play long-range, the Technomancer also might be up your alley.
Typically, Outriders players can't equip ordinances even though enemies will often throw them at you or drop them when they die. Luckily, Technomancers can also throw ordinances out with abilities like Scrapnel. There are also multiple turrets you can summon, including a cryo one and the Blighted Turret, which unloads bullets and poison at enemies.
The Technomancer's melee attack freezes enemies, keeping them from moving for a certain period of time. The Technomancer will also gain health back as they deal damage regardless of how close they are to the enemy. It also has a lot of passive abilities to skills like Leech.
There are three skill trees for the Technomancer:
- Pestilence: Players who invest in the Pestilence tree will gain damage increases and bonuses to abilities around decay, which is an elemental status that deals damage over time.
- Tech Shaman: If you want to play around with all the gadgets you get access to as a Technomancer, check out the Tech Shaman tree. Using gadgets also increases your damage and anomaly power. Using Tech Shaman skills also unlocks healing effects for your allies and other elemental bonuses.
- Demolisher: Putting points in the Demolisher tree unlocks a little of everything, but if you love using ordinances (grenades), then you'll love some of the perks here. Using ordinances can give you armor, health, and damage buffs.
Outriders is set to release on April 1, 2021 on Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PS5, PS4, Steam, Epic Games Store, and Stadia. It'll also launch on Xbox Game Pass on day one.
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