Mad scientists, rejoice! The latest profession announced for Guild Wars 2, the Engineer, will let you mix chemicals, create robot monstrosities, and otherwise wreak general mechanical havoc on the world around you to your heart's content! Described as a "master of mechanical mayhem," the Engineer looks to be a mind-blowing mash-up of multiple Team Fortress 2 classes and Belle's dad from Beauty and the Beast with a thirst for war. These tinkerers have a wide array of weapons and tools at their disposal to help allies and control enemies, along with some crazy mechanics that let them swap out their skill bars and use temporary weapons on the fly.
I was sold as soon as I read "explosives, gadgets, alchemy, and all manner of deployable devices" in the introductory infortmation posted on ArenaNet's official blog. Describes some of the varied weapons, tools, and skills in the Engineer's arsenal, and gives us a pretty decent idea of how the class will work.
The Engineer is an improviser. As far as I've seen from playing the game at events, no other profession has as many ways to completely swap the tools at their disposal as the Engineer does. Backpacks, turrets, weapons, elixirs--this profession can change it all!
Like the Elementalist, the Engineer can completely swap out the set of weapon skills on their bar on the fly by activiting different kits, instead of by switching weapon sets mid-combat. It's unconfirmed, but it certainly sounds like the Engineer's Backpacks will function similarly to the Elementalists' different "attunements"--which allow Elementalists to swap out their entire weapon skill set mid-combat--since the blog describes Backpacks as completely replacing the Engineer's current weapon skills with skills from the Backpack kit.
For example, Engineers will be able to activate a Bomb Backpack , which replaces their weapon skill set with skills that let him throw smoke bombs, concussion bombs, and fire bombs . Other Backpack kit options listed are Mine Kit, Grenade Kit, Tool Kit, and Med Kit .
Sometimes the mad scientist just needs a flamethrower right away, and simply can't wait. That's where the weapon kit Utility Skills come in handy. One click, and a brand new weapon pops into the engineers hands--again, swapping out the players' full weapon skills bar.
The Flamethrower is a short range AOE torcher that gives players skills like Immolate (which lights nearby enemies on fire), Air Blast (which'll deflect ranged attacks), and Backdraft (to pull enemies in close enough for you to burninate them). The Elixir Gun is another option that lets players "shoot elixirs" at allies to support them.
For full-time use, Engineers can equip a rifle, two pistols, or a pistol and shield combo as their standard weapons.
Ah, the classic immobile friend of warmongering mechanics across all games. GW2's Engineer as a bunch of different types of turrets, all designed to defend and control an area in different ways. It sounds like the Engineer will be able to have multiple turrets up at once, but only one of each type at a time. The Engineer can pack up turrets to move them around with the fighting, although there is a cooldown between deployments. Each turret also has a unique overcharge skill associated with it.
The Thumper Turret does constant AOE damage, but can be overcharged to do a sudden massive attack that also knocks down all surrounding enemies. Other turrets listed are the Rifle Turret (likely single-target DPS), Net Turret (likely ensnare large groups of enemies), Flame Turret (likely cone-based DPS turret), and Healing Turret (which should heal, or else ArenaNet's naming convention is all messed up).
This is where the mad scientist part comes in. Engineers can chug pre-mixed potions during battle to gain temporary effects, but not all of them are well-documented. One elixir in particular gives the Engineer a random Elite power from another profession (much like the Thief's Steal ability in PvP).
The tool belt is an extra skill bar above the weapon skill bar that's designed to "enhance the effectiveness and functionality of the Engineer's utility and healing skills" by granting access to unique skills customized to to whatever the Engineer is currently doing. For example, when you equip a turret, the tool belt has a skill that lets you self-destruct that turret.
With the Mine Kit , you get a skill to detonate all your mines. With the Grenade Kit , you get the Grenade Barrage skill. With a Med Kit out, your tool belt has a self-healing skill.