I played a combined total of about 16 hours of Staff Weaver during the preview, specifically in PvP.
In working with the skill set, I wanted to provide some specific feedback of what is “working well” and what could perhaps need some modest tweaks, and in the case of most of the Water/X combinations, need some very significant value adjustments or additional functionality to be useful for damage or support builds.
If needed, these could be PVP/PVE split, but I feel like the suggested numbers are very “fair” and are compromises between existing skills, such as comparing healing numbers to Geyser or Water Globe for similar skills. I hope some of the more “conceptual” changes are liked for the additional utility and functionality.
Each additional utility/suggestion is designed to provide better combo potential and “flow” of the play style. Other suggestions are to add Fields or Finishers where appropriately needed, which often also synergize with build options.
For example “What would benefit Fire/Air and Air/Fire kits if we werent to add something to Plasma Blast?”
Answer: adding a short area “Pull” to Plasma Blast after it explodes, allowing it to collapse enemies inward to either Lava Font / Static Filed combo them, or to Lightning Surge + Meteor Shower them. Also, its totally in need of a Blast finisher to combo with Lava Font and Static Field.
Unlike the other weapon sets I tried, Staff felt the most “fluid” with the new Weaver Attunement swapping. That said, I spent the vast majority of my time using Arcane and Air Specialization, which greatly helped reduce the deadspace between ability use.
Staff has a lot of situations in which the deadspace between swapping can easily be filled, either with functional auto attacks (Fire, somewehat Air and Earth) or long cast times to follow up after a swap (Air 2, Earth 2, and Earth/Air 3, Meteor Shower).
I agree with the majority of the feedback on the forum and Reddit that it would be nice for the global recharge to be reduced to a baseline of 3 seconds. Arcane would then further help reduce the dead space, allowing for vastly improved fluidity, especially for the other weapon options.
Now, on to specific skills and combinations that were extremely fun and rewarding:
The Really Good! No changes needed.
Pile Driver is a fantastically designed ability and feels extremely rewarding to set up, and uses both Air/Earth and Earth/Air skill sets extremely well. The immobilize from Earth 5 and the impassible knockback from Earth 4 work well enough to set up the hit for Pile Driver, but also Air 5 (and Air 4 for easy Swiftness for the traited damage boost) is exceptionally good for helping to land Pile Driver.
When using Air/Arcane build and taking Lightning Rod and Tempest Defense, and swapping during the cast time of Pile Driver, you get an exceptionally potent burst combination, especially when paired with Arcane Blast and Arcane Bolt. Addtionally, it triggers the Air minor lightning strike, and any hits after Pile Driver gain the bonus 20% damage from Tempest’s Defense. This makes a Earth/Air to Air/Earth focused play style synergy that feels unique, fresh, and very fun, and exactly what I felt like playing Weaver should feel like!