Can one explain Melee Combos?

Can somebody explain in some detail the melee combos and how one can get the most of them (or avoid them, if that’s the case)?

For sure some characters benefit from them as they can merge both of the melee skills into one more effective.

but how do you do them? Rath for example. does this happen automatically after a certain number of swings if you are just holding down the swing button? or do you have repeatedly press the button with proper timing to get the combo?

Depends, “melee combo” can also be the simple chaining of standard attacks, accomplished by just holding down the main attack. This can sometimes be enhanced : Phoebe can get a boost to her secondary attack by succesfully completing a primary attack combo.
Or maybe you meant a combinaison of skills, like the dreaded Rath “air projection + ultimate”.

At any rate, characters will have different combos ( either standard attacks or skills ) available. Phoebe do not really have something going on with her skills, except for the teleport+ultimate which seems somehow to shorten the ultimate cast time. But she does have that helix mutation that can improve her secondary attack, which in turn can be improved even farther to be even deadlier.

As to avoid them ? Well really if you’re playing a ranged character you will WANT to avoid a melee opponent closing the gap. If you can’t, well, try to move around. They have just the same issues as you do, it’s hard to keep track of a target in melee. The best way to break their combos is then to avoid being in their line of sight. Even worse, often, the swings of their own weapons and the occasional moveset can confuse the situation a lot for them. Like, a lot of things happening on screen.
So yeah the best way to avoid is probably to try and move around them to force their swings to hit the air rather than you… Or try an escape skill if you have one, like Calderus dashes or Shayne and Aurox stealth or Phoebe’s teleport…

Another quick tip, ranged heroes generally have a fast off-melee attack, which does a reasonable knockback. This can often be useful for getting melee off your back/front/whatever.

Thanks for the answers folks. To clarify, I mean the standard melee attack combos like those of Galilea, Rath, etc. So far the question remains open.

Here is an example. With Galilea, I stun a player with my shield, close in, face to face cling clang cling clang, I chisel away 25% of the health bar and the player runs away or kills me. When I play against Galilea, she comes close, cling clang, and I am dead from full health in two smacks. I need to know what I am missing. No ultimate skills involved.

Well standard melee attacks combo are nothing special, just as said a matter of holding down your attack button.

Now maybe they are criting - just the same as with ranged, aim for the head ! That, with the help of a little gear, will really deeply impact the amount of damage you can deal, either with melee attacks or ranged attacks.
And obviously Helix choices, or potential backup.

Not exactly. Galilea, for example, only does her full melee combo if you are moving while holding the attack button. I know it seems odd that someone might NOT be moving while attacking, but I figured it was worth mentioning.

I don’t really play melee characters, so I’m not sure if this is the same for others as well.