By canon decree, “Kleese is the biggest troll in the universe.” Lore-wise, this is definitely true (although the universe if BB is admittedly a small one), but, gameplay wise, it’s not particularly. Kleese is exactly what it says: he works best when he can choose a location and just stay there (“Territorial”), his support is confined almost entirely to restoring his allies’ and his own shields (“Shielder”), and, while his tactics aren’t particularly convoluted, he’s got a lot going on (“Complex”).
Tactically, Kleese works best when he picks a spot and stays there. His Energy Rifts are incredibly powerful: nearby allies will be made incredibly tough (well, anyone except for the Eldrid, because the Eldrid have no shields) and nearby enemies will die extremely quickly, but his Energy Rifts are susceptible to destruction and he can’t recover quickly. They have only 700 hp and are on a 12 second CD, by default, such that it takes 36 seconds to get his “spot” to full strength.
In PvP, this means finding a spot in defilade (for those unfamiliar with the term, it refers to finding a protected position that prevents enemies from firing upon it), generally behind a wall or corner, and stacking all of his Energy Rifts together, to rapidly recharge the shield of any nearby ally and liquifying any enemy that dares approach. From this entrenched position, you can then move out and attack your foes with his skills and basic attacks (and move back when you’re pressed by your enemies).
The greatest threat to this emplacement is enemy BB with ranged AoE capabilities: killing the rifts individually is difficult and so long that Kleese can generally counter (and Kleese can often protect his rifts by simply standing on top of them and blocking attacks with his massive model; Kleese’s powerful shield and the rifts’ restoration will generally keep him alive) and enemy melee will die extremely quickly if they close with his rifts but if an enemy BB can manage to land a poweful AoE (such as Thorn’s Blight or WotW, OM or WF’s grenades w/ napalm, Alani’s Riptide w/ Wave Shock or Emergence, etc.) on top of stacked rifts, his position will rapidly deteriorate. Always be on guard for this; try to prevent it if possible, but acknowledge when it’s about to happen and be prepared to retreat until you can come back and set up your position again.
In PvE, this means finding the spot that your enemies will appear at and stacking your Energy Rifts there to kill them as they appear. While Kleese’s territorialism manifests as finding suitable defensive positions in PvP, in PvE, it manifests as creating a kill zone. Because the Energy Rifts both restore allied shields and attack enemies, Kleese can stand on top of and protect his rifts, trusting them to keep him alive via contantly restoring his shields, and using his own attacks to kill enemies that will not come to him.
The secret to setting up these kill zones is knowledge of the mission: learn where enemies spawn and set up your kill zone as quickly as possible (enemies will not attack while spawning but will be susceptible to attack; if you do it properly, enemies will generally die before they’re even able to do anything). If you’re able to set up in a spot before enemies begin spawning (such as on the elevator in the Sentinel), you can often times simply go afk while your rifts take care of everything. Of course, if you don’t manage to kill enemies instantly, certain enemies with strong AoE capabilities (Brutes w/ their grenades; Enforces with their ground slam; etc) can eliminate your position in a single attack. Be on guard for these enemies and kill them quickly.
Of course, creating an entrenched position isn’t all Kleese is good at. He is by far the most durable support character in the game. In fact, unlike any other character, his max shield increases as he levels (just like his max hp), albeit at a slower pace. His hp + shield is second only to the tanks (Attikus, Boldur, ISIC, Montana, and S&A). In addition, his chair energy allows him to hover/fly for short periods of time, providing him with some useful vertical mobility.
He’s also got a ridiculously huge model with a very simple, almost spherical shape, making it trivial for him to be hit by attacks (which is why he needs his incredibly high hp + shield). This is Kleese’s most significant weakness: it’s basically impossible for Kleese to actually dodge attacks.
For his abilities, things people probably don’t realize or should know from the start.
[details=Tactical Battle Chair]
Kleese’s passive. Described as “Tactical Battle Chair Energy” (I’ll just call it “chair energy”), this is a communal resource that Kleese uses for his pseudo-flight as well as his alt-fire Taser. The default maximum is 20, and it takes 5 seconds of not having any energy consumed for it to begin recharging at a rate of ~5/sec. His pseudo-flight can be activated by pressing the jump button while in mid-air; it will consume 7 chair energy to keep him in flight for an additional ~3 seconds (if you have less chair energy, it will consume as much as you’ve got and end your flight earlier; you cannot have it consume less than 7 if you have at least 7, however). You have limited control over your direction while in pseudo-flight; precision control is almost impossible so, in general, it’s only really effective for continuing in the direction you were going. Unlike any other double jump mechanic, however, Kleese can repeatedly use his pseudo-flight as long as he has chair energy to spend.[/details]
Kleese’s basic attack. Rapid fire (~4 attacks/sec), with unlimited ammo, extreme range and accuracy, and completely lacking in recoil, this is actually an extremely effective attack. It’s also one of the only basic attacks in the game without any loss of damage at extreme ranges (so feel free to pseudo-snipe). The only real criticism of it is that the projectile is of only moderate speed and that Kleese can’t zoom in to really take advantage of the extreme accuracy, damage, and range at long distances.[/details]
Kleese’s alt-fire. Upon clicking (and holding down) the alt-fire button, Kleese will attempt to create a tether with an enemy within melee range (just slightly longer than melee range, but it’s still really close) that is in front of him. After establishing the tether and as long as Kleese has chair energy (it doesn’t consume chair energy when a target isn’t tethered), the target will remain tethered until the tether breaks from the target running away (the max distance is noticably longer than the range required to create the tether) or breaking line of sight (as long as you can still see them and they’re not too far away, they’ll remain tethered). The tether will tick 4 times per second (it’s unafffected by attack speed gear), dealing the same damage as Kleese’s basic attack (with a 50% bonus against shields; this is improved by attack damage gear), consuming 1 chair energy per tick. Furthermore, since this attack isn’t actually aimed, it cannot crit or be blocked by carried shields and it is unaffected by attack speed (since the tether is basically a DoT). Barring crits, attack speed gear, or shields, the DPS between his main and alt-fire is identical.
This is primarily a tool for taking out combatants that are otherwise hard to hit, such as extremely agile or fast moving enemies that are difficult to hit with your basic attack or enemies carrying shields. Just keep in mind that a target can run past you in order to break LoS so, if they charge you, you’re probably going to have to turn quickly to keep an eye on them.
By strange dint of design, this can be used to break or open objects like chests and small shards without consuming any chair energy (since they don’t technically takes any damage; they just get hit; tethering giant shards will consume chair energy because giant shards do actually take damage) so it’s extremely good at rapidly opening a large number of containers.[/details]
Skill 1. This summons an energy rift at the chosen location within short range. The rift has 700 hp by default (doesn’t increase as you level) and, every 3 seconds, will pulse to deal damage to all enemies within melee range of it (the range of the pulse is visible) and restore the shields of all allies (including Kleese) within melee range of it. Both the damage and the shield restore is increased by skill damage but only the shield restore is increased by heal power (no gear changes are represented on your info tab).
This is by far the most powerful tool in Kleese’s arsenal: if an opponent can continuously deny him his Energy Rifts, he will be at a significant disadvantage but if you can get up your max number of rifts in close proximity to each other, no one will want to mess with you.[/details]
Skill 2. A long range attack with relatively slow moving projectiles that follow a logarithmic ballistic arc (they go straight ahead and then drop precipitously instead of following a more normal parabolic ballistic arc). It takes a little over 1 second to fire all of the mortars and the damage dealt is pretty pathetic before you get helices (it’s actually worse than what you’d get out of your basic attack over the same period). Helices make this a much more powerful and versatile attack.[/details]
Ultimate. Kleese summons a black hole generator (takes about 1 second) within the targeted location (the range is the same as Energy Rift) and 2 seconds after it appears, it deals a bunch of damage to and and pulls all enemies within a very large radius before disappearing. Because the generator hovers above ground and disappears as soon as it “detonates”, enemies will generally be pulled past the generator and appear a short distance from where you placed the generator on the opposite side of it.
Probably the weakest part of his kit, it gives him some burst damage and light control.[/details]
[details=Level 1: Shocking Twist v. Shocking Pulse]
ST’s description is somewhat inaccurate. What it actually does is allow your Energy Mortars to heal an ally’s shield for the same amount of damage they otherwise would have dealt, regardless of how the damage was increased. As such, Overloaded Mortars will actually increase the amount of shield restored by a lot; Skill Damage gear does as well. Interestingly, Heal Power gear will also increase the size of the heal without increasing the damage, based upon however much damage it would deal. This is only useful if you’ve got allies and only if they’ve got shields. If you have allies that spend a lot of time in melee, this can end up reducing your damage dealt since this helix has your Energy Mortars collide with allies, even if they are already at max shield.
Shocking Pulse makes your Energy Rifts melt through enemy shields. In PvE, you don’t see many shields so it’s less than useful but, if you’re running solo or don’t need to restore your allies shields more than you already can, increasing damage against the few enemies with shields is probably more useful. In PvP, most players have shields but they tend to get chewed through quickly enough on their own so you’re not liable to see much improvement.
Really, the decision comes down to whether you want ST or not: if you want the shield heal with mortar, take ST; otherwise, take SP.[/details]
[details=Level 2: Shiftless Shells v. Overloaded Mortars]
Recommendation: Overloaded Mortars
SS is basically worthless in PvE since slows just aren’t that useful. If you really need to slow down enemies in PvP, I can see going for this, but OM is just so obscenely good that I still recommend against it.
OM is absolutely amazing. Without this helix, Energy Mortars is basically worthless: it just doesn’t do enough damage to justify the animation time. With this helix, however, the damage gets cranked up insanely high. Upon activation, your shield is reduced to 0 and broken; however much shield you had when you used it is then distributed evenly over the number of mortars that you will be firing and added to their base damage. To make it even better, the bonus damage from shield is added before multipliers like Skill Damage gear are added in. Normally, losing your shield is pretty crippling, especially for a shield heavy character like Kleese. However, if you’re playing Kleese properly, you should have a nest of Energy Rifts, which will very rapidly refill his shield, making the “cost” pretty negligible.[/details]
[details=Level 3: Chair Slam v. Quantum Precision v. Don’t Tase Me Bro]
Recommendation: Don’t Tase Me Bro
Chair Slam is just terrible. It consumes all of your chair energy to do an altogether unimpressive amount of damage.
QP turns Kleese’s basic attack into a charge driven sniper blast: it turns the attack into a hitscan (i.e. rather than firing a projectile, it just checks to see if someone is in the line of fire and, if they are, they’re hit; in effect, the projectile’s speed is now infinite) that you charge up by holding down the attack button and fire by releasing it. There are 4 charge levels: at .5 secs, the attack does 175% of your basic attack’s damage; at 1 sec, the attack does 350%; at 1.5 secs, it does 525%; and, at 2 secs (or longer), it does 700%. When you take the helix, Kleese’s wristwatch gains a new display that shows the current charge with 3 little vertical dots (each dot represents a .5 sec interval, and it takes .5 secs for him to bring his arm up to show it). While this is excellent for sniping, it actually ends up being a DPS loss: you’ll manage 8 attacks within 2 seconds using his normal firing style, so, even if you’re able to continuously fire without accidentally creating delays, you’ll be doing ~87.5% of your normal damage. The only advantages are that it is much easier to hit fast targets at long ranges and that it is extremely bursty, which can be good for PvP, though the loss of DPS in general isn’t worth it, imo.
DTMB allows your taser to hit a second target (tethered to your initial target) for full damage at no additional cost. It makes your taser much more effect in chaotic melee scenarios and, since it will tether to an additional target, if you’re trying to get a specific target that doesn’t want to be targeted, it doubles your chances.[/details]
[details=Level 4: Rift Network v. Unstable Rifts]
Recommendation: Rift Network
The only possible reason you might want to use UR is if you can’t manage to keep your rifts alive. Because your rifts are a major source of your survivability, you’ll often end up shooting yourself in your foot with this.
RN is absolutely amazing. After taking this helix, whenever you place a Rift, if another rift is within the pulse range of the new rift, they will link up (shown with a small beam of electricity that connects the two). For each rift in the network, the damage and shield restoration of every rift in the network is increased by 100%: if you have 2 rifts connected, they pulse for 200% of their normal effect; 3 rifts gives you 300%, etc. If you stack up the rifts, they will still be pulsing individually but they will also be pulsing more powerfully, giving you exponential value to stacked Energy Rifts (1 rift is 100%, 2 rifts is 400%, 3 rifts is 900%, 4 rifts is 1600%). This is what makes stacked rifts so friggin’ deadly.[/details]
[details=Level 5: Don’t Call It a Heal Chair v. Extended Battery Life v. Get Ready for a Surprise]
Recommendation: Don’t Call It a Heal Chair or Extended Battery Life
GTfaS is just terrible. The damage is mediocre and the goal should be to avoid dying rather than punishing anyone that’s foolish enough to be in melee with you when you die. It’s amusing but, compared to getting something that’s actually useful, I don’t see the value.
DCIaHC is only useful if you are in a group (since it doesn’t heal you, sadly). The healing is static (it doesn’t increase as you level), but it does get improved by heal power gear (but not Skill Damage) and it also counts as a heal for the purpose of gear effects and is constantly ticking on anyone near you (which makes certain pieces of gear quite good).
If you don’t need or want some heals for your allies, EBL is excellent because it allows you to spend 50% more time flying or tasering your enemies before you have to recharge.[/details]
[details=Level 6: Bulk Savings v. Rift Farm v. Expanded Mortar Capacity]
Recommendation: Bulk Savings or Rift Farm
If you took Rift Network at level 4 like I recommend, the value of BS is obvious: 4 rifts pulsing for 400% damage is a huge improvement over 3 rifts pulsing for 300% damage. Of course, it’s only useful if you can actually get 4 rifts out. If you’re having problems keeping rifts alive, RF is the choice to go with.
EMC is a trap. Because the damage from Overloaded Mortars is distributed evenly across all of the mortars you fire, this barely adds any damage because the base damage per mortar is laughable. If you didn’t take Overloaded Mortars, then you’re not really trusting to Energy Mortars to do damage so 4 more mortars isn’t really valuable to you anyways.[/details]
[details=Level 7: Geezer Pleaser v. Bouncing Balls of Death v. Tampered Mortars]
All of these are useful in their own way. GP is absolutely amazing when combined with Overloaded Mortars: your damage with Energy Mortar is cranked up insanely high by Overloaded Mortars, allowing you to easily get kills and instantly restore the shield that you just consumed to power up the attack. It’s amazing synergy.
BBoD is basically giving yourself a chance to hit even if you miss your intended target. The mortars will bounce a few times (it’s not a set amount; it’s a remaining momentum thing) and explode when they hit something, allowing you to potentially deal damage if you weren’t accurate in the first place.
TM is my least favorite of these because, while it reduces the animation time for Energy Mortars significantly (they’re all fired at once instead of one at a time), you lose precision and accuracy with it, drastically diminishing the chances of all of the mortars hitting the same target. If you’re worried about missing, BBoD is probably better, but this is still legitimate if you just want to hit it and move on.[/details]
[details=Level 8: Brains Before Brawn v. Brawn Before Brains]
In my mind, the choice here is as much about Taser v. Energy Mortars or melee v. ranged as it is about damage v. survivability. I say that BrainsBB is about Energy Mortars because of Overloaded Mortars: 150 additional shield is 150 more damage per Energy Mortars. It makes you harder to kill and improves your Energy Mortar damage. If you tend to avoid Taser range, BrainsBB is the best option. BrawnBB is an amazing improvement to your Taser damage, especially if you took Don’t Tase Me Bro.[/details]
[details=Level 9: Healthy Rift v. Quick Pulse]
Recommendation: Quick Pulse
In general, if you’re having problems keeping your rifts alive, an additional 450 hp (from 700) isn’t really going to solve your problem much. If you are having problems with your rifts just barely dying, HR is going to be useful, but I find it much more useful to simply protect the rifts and have them avoid taking damage in the first place.
QP’s 33% reduction in pulse time equates to a 50% increase in the number of pulses (pulses occur every 2 seconds instead of 3), which gives you a lot more shield and damage. If you’ve got a rift network 4 strong properly placed, enemies (including bosses) will melt and you’ll be almost unkillable: that’s a minimum of 524 shield restored and damage dealt 2 times per second, for a total of 1048/sec of each. Even the toughest enemies (including bosses) will die within seconds of getting in range, and they’ll basically have to kill you in a single attack to have a chance of killing you.[/details]
[details=Level 10: Sharing is Caring v. Insta-Hole v. Square Root of Pain]
Recommendation: Sharing is Caring
IH isn’t really necessary: reducing the delay from ~2 seconds to ~1.2 seconds won’t be especially noticeable. SRoP is generally a bad idea for the same reason that the earlier Unstable Rifts helix is a bad idea: your rifts are you lifeblood; destroying them, especially multiples at one time, is shooting yourself in the foot.
SiC isn’t stellar, but it’s not bad. Overshield is pretty uncommon (so it’s not liable to be wasted) but can be applied to everyone, and it is given to Kleese as well, if he’s in the area when it detonates.[/details]
Kleese is a big, easy to hit target that can die pretty easily if you’re separated from your rifts. By that same token, he’s got a good basic attack and alt-fire and, properly executed, his rifts are absolutely disgustingly powerful. I’ll go over all stats here, based on how I personally categorize them, and provide a priority list for each category.
(Skill Damage>Attack Damage>Cooldown>Attack Speed>Critical Damage>Shield Pen>Recoil=Reload)
Skill Damage is the absolute best way to improve Kleese’s offensive capacity: so much of his damage comes from his Rifts and his Mortars that it’s almost sickening. Keep in mind that Skill Damage also improves his shield healing.
Attack Damage may not improve Kleese’s rifts or mortars, but it improves both his basic attack as well as his taser.
Cooldown’s primary contribution is in allowing you to use Energy Mortars more often. It also allows you to get up to (or back to) full strength on your rift network faster, but that’s only if you’re having problems keeping your rifts up.
Attack Speed only benefits Kleese’s basic attack. It doesn’t affect his taser and has lower values than Attack Damage which is why it’s so low.
Kleese can’t crit with any of his skills or his taser so only his basic attack benefits from Critical Damage.
Shield pen is utterly rubbish. It’s only useful in PvP because most enemies in PvE don’t have shields (and no bosses have them; Rendain’s shield doesn’t care about shield pen). Still, it actually does something unlike recoil and reload. Recoil and reload are only useful as penalties to take on gear since they do absolutely nothing to him.
Special Note: if you take Overloaded Mortars, Max Shield turns into a viable and middling priority damage stat. It’s extremely good for his survivability and will also make your Energy Mortars incredibly nasty.[/details]
(Max Health=Damage Reduction<Health Regen=Max Shield<Heal Power<Skill Damage<Healing Received<Shield Recharge=Shield Regen=CC duration)
Kleese has a lot of shield and hp. While it’s not enough to outright make DR better than Max Health (Kleese can get 2791 hp+shield w/ the shield helix at level 10 and it takes 3333 for DR to be straight up better), if you stand near Energy Rifts like you should be, it’s pretty trivial to get enough of your shields restored to make DR better.
Health Regen is high priority mainly because it is the only way that Kleese has to restore his own hp. Even if you’re standing in Energy Rifts all the time, chances are good that you’ll still occasionally take enough damage between pulses that a dedicated opponent could take you out via attrition.
Even though Kleese is nominally a shield survival character, max shield doesn’t really make him more survivability because he already gets so much naturally and he should be getting pulses from his rifts incredibly often. While it’s going to be a major offensive boon if you took Overloaded Mortars, it’s not really going to do much more to prevent him from dying than other stats.
Heal Power and Skill Damage improve the shield restoration of Kleese’s rifts (and his Mortar, if you took that helix at level 1). Rifts are a major part of his survivability so improving them is a major advantage.
Healing Received will increase the amount of shield that Kleese gets from his own shields but it’s lower value because it only affects Kleese and only if he has an allied healer.
Shield Regen and Recharge are redundant because the rifts restore shield faster and without having to bother with delay.
CC duration is functionally worthless. CCs don’t last that long so the minute values of CC duration on gear basically mean nothing.[/details]
[details=Support](Heal Power>Skill Damage>Cooldown)
Heal Power increases your shield healing more than Skill Damage does (and also improves the Heal Chair, if you took it). Of course, you’re Skill Damage does more than just increase your shield healing, like increasing your damage.
Cooldown allows you to replace your rifts more quickly and use your other skills more often, but more potent restoration is more valuable for Kleese than a greater rate of access.[/details]
(Move speed>Sprint speed>CC duration)
Move speed is useful in combat and out of combat and is increased by sprint speed. Sprint speed is only really useful outside of combat. CC duration reduces the duration of slows and stuns but is still absolutely terrible.[/details]
Getting shards helps you buy gear as well as construct buildables. Buildable reduction makes them way cheaper, however. Something to consider is that I only find these stats remotely useful in PvP. PvE gives you shards like candy; unless you’ve got someone who bogarts all of the shards, every mission should provide a surplus of shards even if you have a triple legendary loadout (like I do for pretty much everyone). In PvP, however, these are absolutely amazing and can actually be the foundation of an effective strategy.[/details]
Legendaries of Note:
[details=Gloves (attack damage)]
Attack damage isn’t really recommended because, for Kleese, it’s negligible compared to what he can do with Skill Damage, but some people might like his basic attack and/or taster enough to build around it. Pacifier is the only one I’d recommend because it makes it harder to break your shield (and beefs up Overloaded Mortars) and makes you much harder to kill because all of your recovery and raw hp is acting on less incoming damage (keep in mind, this is also triggered by your skills, which is nice).[/details]
Aria’s Encore (thrall ops), Firmware Update 1.51c (algorithm)
It’s important to remember that AE is only useful for ops runs and only if you are going for a high number of ops points. Without either of those, the legendary effect is basically a waste. However, if you are farming ops for commander packs, this can be absolutely devastating because it’s a crapton of skill damage to beef up your rifts and mortars (and it has CD redux too). Firmware Update is excellent because Kleese should be spamming skills a lot. His skills are on already low CDs (12 and 10 secs) so you’ll see the proc pretty often; just make sure you keep throwing out rifts even when you’re full (if only to cycle them and keep them at max hp).
I’ll mention Chrono Key here to warn people against it. The secondary stat is marginal and, if you have a full rift network rolling in the proper location, you don’t really have much need for the legendary effect since stuff will be dying too quickly.[/details]
[details=Pauldrons (damage reduction)]
Blissbeast Skull Plate (void’s edge), “Alamo-7” Armor (algorithm), Burning Sunset (rogue)
Blissbeast is one of the best pure survivability tools in the game. It gives a lot of DR and a nice bit of Health Regen to go with it. Furthermore, because the legendary effect includes shield damage (which Kleese will take a lot of) but is based off of his Max HP, the legendary effect of the BSP will be triggered plenty often, without being problematic because you should have your rifts keeping your shield full. Alamo-7 Armor has a worthless secondary stat and, although the cooldown time on the legendary effect is extremely long, it is extremely powerful (2 seconds of total immunity). Burning Sunset is useful because the continual shield healing via a properly set up rift network will allow him to stay in combat for long periods and CCs are extremely annoying. It won’t protect your rifts directly , but it will allow you to safely face tank a massive skill damage attack to protect them as long as they’re not in the radius of the skill.[/details]
[details=Med Kits (heal power)]
Solar Sustainer (jennerit), Dr. Fist’s Medic Kit (upr)
The only time you want to use these is if you are taking Heal Chair. If you are not taking the heal chair, you can’t get the benefit of any of the legendary effects (shield healing doesn’t count). However, if you do take the heal chair, these are incredible. The Heal Chair constantly ticks every half second to any ally near you, regardless of whether they actually need to be healed or not. If you take these, you can give your nearby allies a significantly amount of additional hp (via Dr. Fist’s) or both of your additional attack damage (via Solar Sustainer). For a support minded Kleese, these are amazing: Solar Sustainer is more offensively minded and Dr. Fist for the more defensively minded.[/details]
[details=Amulets (healing received)]
All-4-One Morale Booster (upr), Leechsteel Brooch (renegade)
The All-4-One is great for keeping your nearby melee allies alive. The DR makes you harder to kill too, which helps a lot. Leechsteel is awesome for Kleese because Kleese does a lot of skill damage, so getting a bit more life steal and a bit more damage to go with your increased healing received can be useful. If you allow enemies to get close and get chewed up by your rifts, you can get a lot of healing.[/details]
[details=Injectors (health regen)]
Oath of the Sustained (renegade)
An excellent utility legendary that also helps out your team. You get health regen, increased damage, and a portion of all damage dealt (which should be a lot) is given to your allies as life. Considering Kleese’s potential DPS with a good rift network and Overloaded Mortars, you can end up providing a lot of healing to your allies. Combined with the Heal Chair, you can offset the need for a “real” healer.[/details]
[details=Armor (max hp)]
Vigilance Link (sentinel), Vampiric Vestment (jennerit), Pain-2-Gain Re-Knitter (upr)
Vigilance Link gives you 2 excellent survivability stats and makes your team more durable as well. Excellent for team players and more support minded people. Vampiric vestments will give you hp, more hp when you kill things, and more attack damage so that it’s easier to kill things. I don’t really recommend VV for PvP because players have a tendency to not stand in a complete rift network and die repeatedly, which you kind of need to get the extra hp out of VV. Pain-2-Gain Re-Knitter has both of Kleese’s best survivability stats but it requires health damage to ratchet up the extra hp, which is not really Kleese’s forte. Only use P2G if you have a true healer on your team or a lot of other damage recovery in your loadout.[/details]
[details=Batteries (max shield)]
One-4-All Shield Array (experiment), Modernista (saboteur), Voxis Core (jennerit)
Modernista is a good anti-ranged shield with a decent secondary stat. A good way to discourage snipers in PvP since you can avoid the first crit and hurt them in the process. One-4-All Shield Array gives you more shield, your allies more shield (and even gives shield to Eldrid so that they can benefit from your rifts), and can stack up some shield penetration if you want to push a shield pen build, not that it’s very good. Voxis Core is absolutely amazing since the legendary effect is basically a 15% increase in damage if there’s more than 1 enemy nearby, more shield means that you’re both harder to kill and your mortars are more deadly, and skill damage means that you’re healing more and you’re dealing more damage.
I will mention Executive Insurance Policy here to caution people against using it. First off, it’s only decent in PvP when the additional shards are actuallly useful (you’ll have more than enough shards in PvE). Secondly, the legendary effect only applies if your shield was refilled while it was charging. Since Kleese will almost always recharge his shields via his rift network, this will happen rarely since it takes 5 seconds of not taking damage (and still having a sub-max shield) for shields to begin recharging.[/details]
[details=Generators (shield regen)]
Energetic Refractor (lore)
The only generator I’ll bother mentioning and only because it’s his lore legendary. I really don’t see the point here. Shield regen is laughable on Kleese because his rifts are so much better. The skill damage is inferior because it’s a lore legendary, The legendary effect isn’t even all that good because it’s a mere 10% and you can already recharge your shields by huge amounts via your rift network.[/details]
[details=Pins (skill damage)]
Bola’s Target Finder (experiment), Codex Fragment (archive)
Bola’s Target Finder is awesome because Kleese doesn’t really do individual bit hits with skills: mortars fires multiple projectiles and his rifts constantly pulse. For raw damage, however, Codex Fragment can be better. The hp is probably more useful in general than the attack speed and, if you’re standing in your rift network, you can laugh away at small sources of continuous damage as long as your rifts don’t get destroyed.[/details]
Bola’s Target Finder, Voxis Core, 1 legendary
Bola’s and VC give you absolutely insane damage and will be basically requisite for any good Kleese loadout: they’re just too amazing not to use. The third slot is largely up to you based upon what you need for your group: Firmware Update 1.51c is excellent for skill spamming, Aria’s Encore is digustingly powerful in ops (and is the absolute best for skill damage, but is only useful in ops), Dr. Fist’s Medic Bag or Solar Sustainer are great if you have a team and want to provide some more support, Oath of the Sustained for some regen and additional healing for your allies, etc. There are a number of options depending upon what you want to do.[/details]
Erratic Shard Extractor (-reload), Bola’s Target Finder, Voxis Core
Free shard gen allows you to afford the other 2 legendaries, which are the best possible options to take because they give you a lot of damage, a lot of support, and a lot of survivability. If you want, you can replace Bola’s with Codex Fragment but I prefer Bola’s because it will help your allies get kills instead of just hoping people are dumb enough to stand in your rift network.[/details]
[details=Fast Leveling PvP]
Erratic Shard Extractor (-reload), Erratic Tempestian Cred-Stick (-reload), 1 legendary
Build as much as possible to get easy xp and level up as quickly as possible. Make sure you stick around the fights as well so that you’re not sacrificing minion xp for build xp. The legendary is there for when you hit level 5 (or 10, whatever your goal level is) and don’t need to build for xp any more. I don’t mention any specific legendaries because there are a crapton that can fit in depending upon what you want and how you want to do it: Bola’s or VC are the obvious choices but, if you’re support, Dr. Fist’s or Solar Sustainer could be the choice to go with.[/details]