If you're an Engineer, more often than not, you've been caught in a situation where you're either thinking
"Wow, this Engineer I'm working with is great! We're working so well together!"
"GOD DAMNIT ALL, WHY WOULD YOU DO THAT?"
A pair of well coordinated, synchronized Engineers can make a ship dangerous. The opposite can be said about Engineers who somehow start to work against each other.
So, I'm going to write a little guide that fellow Engineers should look at to ensure that everything goes smoothly.
Part 1: Coordination
That's the key word when working with another Engineer and the first part of this guide.
Let me transcribe something that happened to me with another Engineer to show you just how a lack of coordination can cost you the game.
"Alright, it's 4 to 4, we're getting hammered pretty hard...The hull is bad but as long as I can keep wacking on it with my spanner, we might just win thi-Wait... Why are you running up with that rubber malletWAITDON'T!"
I was a little pissed when that happened because the repair cooldown meant I couldn't keep spannering it and immediately afterwards, the hull's armor went and the game was over. When I brought it up to him, asking him why he did that, all I got was a "I dunno. It seemed like a good idea."
A little communication would have helped in that situation, but oh well. The past is the past and the future is bright.
Had I said "I've got the hull" or had he asked "Do you need help?" would have made that game go in a completely different direction. So you're probably asking "Roderick, how do I get coordinated with my fellow Engineer?". Or at least that's what I'd like to be asked, but anyway, the easiest way to get coordinated it just to talk to them. Say something. "Hi" or "Hello" is a good starting point, followed by "What's your loadout?" and "Where do you wanna be?". Just this is enough to get you two coordinated enough to make the pilot smile as he flies through the broken remains of an enemy ship.
But let's take it a step farther. If you're like me (funny, clever, and secretly dead inside), then you've probably got a few friends and if you're also like me, you've probably introduced them to Guns of Icarus and have played it with them. Well, there's no better source of coordination and teamwork then friendship and working with someone you're familiar with. So if you've got a good buddy you like to play with and they are also an Engineer, get on the voice chat for GoI or use your favorite voice chat program like Mumble, Team Speak, Dolby Axon, or even Skype. Verbally communicating with your Engineer buddy will make coordination so much easier. And once you really start to sync up, you start complimenting eachother's play styles by picking out the right tools for the right job.
Part 2: Loadout
Three slots, three tools, many options. Once you and your Engineer Buddy have synced up, you will find yourself asking what tools you should be packing. Now, there are many, many different combinations and roles that Engineers can fill, but I won't go over them all. Just the two that I've had work well for me.
Fix, Buff, Douse:
With this duo, you really need to coordinate with your fellow Engineer because one of you won't be packing anything to put out fires.
Engineer 1: This Engineer is the Fix and Buff part, meant to be the one who's keeping the whole ship together.
Loadout: Shifting Spanner, Pipe Wrench, Dynabuff Industries Kit
Engineer 2: This Engineer is the Douse part and is meant to be the ship's fire extinguisher.
Loadout: Whatever two repair tools they are comfortable with and the Chemical Spray (I honestly think the Chemical Spray is better than the fire extinguisher, but in the end, it's your personal preference)
Explanation: Alright now, it seems risky for an Engineer to not have a fire suppression tool on them, but here's my logic: Engineer 1 is the ship's main fixer, able to bring back any destroyed part quickly with the shifting spanner and repair it with the Pipe Wrench. This build also allows for pre and post battle buffing. But it's up to Engineer 2 to jump at a moment's notice the minute a fire starts up. The best way to utilize this is with a tag team system. Say both Engineers are on a Galleon. Engineer 1 is on the top deck and Engineer 2 is on the lower deck with the guns. A fire breaks out on the hull.
Engineer 1 and 2 switch places. Engineer 2 puts out the fire and any others that broke out while Engineer 2 buffs the guns and jumps on with the Gunner before tagging out again.
You really need to be in sync with your fellow Engineer for this to work, but I've personally had this work wonders.
These Two Engineers help keep the entire ship in repair while also fully buffed.
Engineer 1: This Engineer is the Fixer. He/She's meant to get parts back up in running order as quickly as possible.
Loadout: Shifting Spanner, Dynabuff Industries Kit, Chemical Spray (See previous discussion)
Engineer 2: This Engineer is the Repairman/woman. He/she's there to get parts back up to full health.
Loadout: Pipe Wrench (Rubber Mallet could work, but you'd have to time it right with your teammate) Dynabuff Industries Kit, Chemical Spray.
Explanation: Alright, this one is a bit tricky and again, requires teamwork. Engineer 1 is meant to repair any disable parts, giving Engineer 2 the chance to bring it's health back up. Running back and forth is going to be happening a lot, but there's this undercurrent that you find where one is waiting for the other and starts to buff and they just sort of meet in the middle, keeping the whole ship together and buffed as one finishes a job, another starts, and they buff inbetween.
Just like in my last guide, I'm going to encourage you to experiment. Talk it out with your Engineer Buddy and experiment as to what works for both of you. There's only one last part to this guide now...
Part 3: Blame
NEVER BLAME A FELLOW ENGINEER FOR A LOSS.
That's the easiest way to ruin a friendship and break the buddy system. The moment you rest the blame solely on the actions of one person is when you start losing sight of what a "game" is meant to be.
From there, all I can say is to have fun. And who knows, that Engineer you're working with might turn into a good friend if you just start out and say "Hi".