Simple Pointers for New Machinists
Unlocking new jobs can be daunting, so to alleviate some of the stress of all of the new actions, here’s some tips to help the new Machinists understand their rotation while leveling and gain some insight into how everything comes together! Reference the weaponskills and abilities in the beginner’s guide if you forget exactly what things do.
For clarity purposes:
- GCDs are your weaponskills. They are tied to a timer related to your skill speed. Without skill speed, your GCD recast timer is 2.5 seconds.
- oGCDs are either tied to a longer cooldown specified in the tooltip or limited by something called animation lock, which is about 0.6s. At most, you can use two oGCDs between GCDs. Sometimes you are limited to only using one oGCD because of faster recast times. For Machinist specifically, this will be during Hypercharge, between your Heat Blasts. This is referred to as weaving.
- Your highest potency skill is Clean Shot until level 58. Reassemble should always be paired with this in a single target situation.
- Hypercharge is a flat 20 potency boost to every weapon skill (GCD) used in the next 7.5s. This translates to your next three GCDs if you are actively fighting something.
- You only have heat right now, but Hot Shot is still 300 potency and a gain over both Split Shot and Slug Shot and should still be used in single target situations.
- Spread Shot should be used for any encounter where you have two or more mobs. It’s also the priority for using Reassemble if you’re fighting multiple enemies.
- Gauss Round is an expendable oGCD that should be used as much as possible for extra damage.
- You will gain access to Heat Blast. This weaponskill is super important. The only time you can use it is during your Hypercharge windows, but the recast time on it is exceptionally low, at only 1.5 seconds. You should never be double weaving between Heat Blast; there’s not enough time to do so. Each Heat Blast reduces the cooldown on Gauss Round, so you should be single weaving a Gauss Round in between your Heat Blast’s when you’re able to. This skill changes what you have been doing for the past five levels; from here on out, you’ll never use other GCDs inside of Hypercharge. Every Hypercharge window you should be getting five Heat Blasts.
- You will gain access to Rook Auto-Turret. This unlocks a new gauge, Battery. Every time you use Hot Shot or finish a full combo segment with Clean Shot, you will gain Battery which can then be used to summon Rook. If you are preventing the Battery gauge from overcapping, you’re using it correctly. Rook Overdrive does not need to be pressed; it will happen at the end of the summons timer.
- Unlocking Wildfire is effectively just a DPS gain on what you already have in your kit. Wildfire should always be paired with Hypercharge, but you will need to manually build your heat up to use it rather than being able to open properly. Wildfire can be used on trash packs, but you are better off holding it slightly for boss encounters.
Nothing crazy. You will learn Ricochet which should be treated nearly the same as Gauss Round. Use as much as you can, and use it inside of Hypercharge windows, alternating use with Gauss Round.
Levels 52 - 60
- The Heated Split Shot and Heated Slug Shot upgrades are a potency upgrade with new animations when used, but otherwise they’re the same as their unheated counterparts.
- Auto-Crossbow is the AoE equivalent of Heat Blast and should be used as long as there are three or more enemies.
- Tactician is a mitigative tool that can either be used to reduce damage when the party is about to take damage, or on mob pulls to help the tank in your dungeon take less damage. Use generously and your parties will love you for it.
- Drill is the big game changer here. From level 58 until level 90, Drill and Reassemble should always be paired together in single-target encounters.
- Barrel Stabilizer is huge. You can start encounters with 50 heat and get Wildfire on cooldown very early in a fight. It can be used for on demand burst during mob pulls as well for instant burst.
Level 70 - 80
- The additions to the job in these levels are almost entirely quality of life upgrades or multi-mob actions. Flamethrower should be used on mob packs, as well as Bioblaster so long as the enemies stay alive for the full duration of the DoT it applies. Hot Shot upgrades to Air Anchor, which aside from aesthetics and more potency with a higher priority on usage, it’s the same action as before. Rook becomes Queen Automaton at level 80. It’s still a set-and-forget type pet, she just does a lot more damage now. Try using her in boss fights if possible while in dungeons.
Levels 82 - 83
- Level 82 will give you Scattergun, and until Machinist gets its trait at level 84 that increases our single-target combo actions, Scattergun will be better on two target fights than the main combo. You should still be using Heat Blast with any Heat you have on two.
Level 70 Rotation Differences
If you’re doing 4.x Ultimate fights, or just syncing down to min-iLvl for fun on old Savage fights, you will notice slight differences in Machinist’s job kit. The overall feel of the job remains the same, so if you’re familiar with level 80 Machinist, the changes will make little to no difference for you. Listed below are the changes, in order of importance:
- Gauss Round and Ricochet only hold two charges
- Air Anchor doesn’t exist; you’re left with Hot Shot
- Queen Automaton doesn’t exist; you’re left with Rook Auto-Turret
- Wildfire is dropped down to 750 potency due to missing traits
- Multi-target priority is different; you don’t have access to Bioblaster. Spread Shot is used at 3+ targets.
Gauss Round and Ricochet only having two charges can feel very clunky. It is highly recommended using 4th or 5th GCD openers when doing synced content. The setup for the 6th GCD opener delays the rotation slightly and will result in overcapping charges.
Hot Shot should still be used on cooldown, even with its lowered potency, but it becomes less flexible with reopeners. At 80, in niche situations, you can re-open after downtime with Reassembled Air Anchor -> Drill and due to the 55s cooldown timer, Reassemble would be back up for the 60s Drill. At level 70, Reassemble must be used on Drill or it will result in a massive loss in damage. Hot Shot still generates 20 Battery though, and should be used on cooldown.
For the most part, Rook functions the same as Automaton Queen. Each ability requires a minimum of 50 Battery to use, and should be summoned inside raid buff windows to achieve maximum potential. The biggest differences here are the amount of potency gained per ten Battery and the lack of wind-up animation on Rook. Rook has a maximum potency of 620 over the course of 9 seconds. Each Volley Fire accounts for a maximum of 75 potency, while Overdrive (Rook’s version of Pilebunker) accounts for a maximum of 320 potency, based on the amount of Battery when summoned. Since Rook has no wind-up animation, you’ll need to summon it a few seconds later than normal to get most of the potency inside buff windows.
The Wildfire change is straight-forward. The ability functions identical to how it does at 80 where you want six GCDs inside of the damage window. The only difference is each GCD only counts for 150 potency. Lower scaling, but the same priority in the rotation.
The absence of Bioblaster does not change much. With the only option being Drill, it just means there’s no thought process on two-target and three-target encounters. At four targets, Spread Shot becomes a gain over Drill, but this isn’t something you need to worry about in high-end content. Outside of Drill and Hot Shot, Spread Shot now becomes the go-to for the basic 3+ target rotation. Battery is less valued due to Rook doing less damage overall compared to Queen, which directly correlates to the expected damage of Clean Shot and the combo system as a whole.
Level 80 Rotation Differences
This section will mostly be used if you’re attempting The Epic of Alexander or synced Eden Savage fights. The additions from 70 to 80 really don’t make too much of a difference, it’s almost entirely quality of life adjustments. The changes listed below will be the difference from 90, so it assumes you’ve acquainted yourself with the Endwalker version of the job.
- Reassemble is brought down to one charge. You’ll want to make sure you’re using it as much as possible, mostly on Drill, occasionally on Air Anchor in single target.
- Chainsaw has been removed from the rotation. Due to this we generate less Battery, but more Heat.
- Queen Automaton now deals less damage since she’s missing Crowned Collider. This means Battery is worth less damage for the amount used compared to level 90. Crowned Collider missing also means Queen’s damage duration ends sooner and should be taken into account when summoning her.
- Heat gain in a two-minute window is slightly higher. After the first usage of Barrel Stabilizer in full uptime situations, you’ll be forced to delay it to after the Hypercharge used for Wildfire or you’ll risk losing Heat that could be used for later Hypercharge windows.
Bioblaster comes out to about 600 potency at two targets, so while it’s a gain on a normal Drill, Reassembled Drill takes priority with an estimated 1000 potency.
Below is the standard opener you’ll want to use at level 80.