Let's Rework Zane's Class Mods

Reworking Zane’s class mods seems like something the community universally agrees needs changing so I figured I’d put some of my own ideas out there. Feel free to give any suggestions you have.

To also preface this, I am also including suggestions I have for changing the Seein’ Dead class mod as it currently, even after the buffs to most of his other class mods, outclasses the others in virtually every way. I believe, as many have suggested before, if the effects of the Seein’ Dead class mod were switched the effects of Seein’ Red skill that all the other class mods would be easier to balance and make effective, but I am making these suggestions under the presumption that this isn’t occurring. The Seein’ Dead class mod will be referenced quite frequently throughout this post as well, so be prepared for that.

Starting in alphabetical order;

Antifreeze:

  • Current Effects: When sliding or airborne, Zane gains 40% weapon damage and 20% damage reduction. When slowed, Zane gains 100% movement speed.
  • Current Skills Boosted: Supersonic Man, Violent Speed, Violent Momentum.

The purpose of this class mod in my opinion is to give greater burst damage while sliding, which is useful for bossing and can out perform the Seein’ Dead class mod in that scenario but outside of that, it isn’t very useful and certainly isn’t necessary to even swap to in its current form as the Seein’ Dead still does more than enough damage while sliding thanks to it boosting all kill skills by 25%. I believe the skills this class mod boosts are all good and I wouldn’t suggest switching any of them out. Overall, this classmod is in a better spot than most of Zane’s other class mods.

Two changes I’d make to this class mod would be to first give it the effect of reversing the movement penalty from taking cyro damage and turning it into a movement bonus. This, on top of the already 100% movement speed while slowed, would ensure that your movement bonuses from supersonic man and violent speed would not be negated and to make sure you’re getting the most damage from violent momentum.

The second effect I would add to this class mod would be to give a large bonus damage against frozen enemies, but after the first shot landed they thaw. This effect would give much greater burst damage against tankier mobs and would aid in making this class mod less niche.

Overall, this classmod is in a better spot than most of Zane’s other class mods, but needs some additional effects or changes to be less niche.

Cold Warrior:

  • Current Effects: When an enemy is frozen, a random status effect is applied.
  • Current Skills Boosted: Trick of the Light, Ready for Action, Synchronicity

In my opinion, this is tied with the Techspert for Zane’s worst class mod. The effect of this class mod is unnoticeable and might as well just be a generic purple class mod. Two skills on this class mod aren’t that useful either, as the bonus cyro damage from Trick of the Light is not going to be active enough to justify boosting it. Synchronicity isn’t great either as the gun damage gained from this is diminished by the large amounts of gun damage you get from Violent Momentum and Donnybrook. Ready for action is the only worthwhile skill here but has no synergy with the other two skills or the effect of the class mod, making it an odd choice to even have on this class mod.

If we’re going to stick with the “Cold Warrior” idea, this class mod should boost at least one of Brain Freeze, Cold Bore, Refreshment, Best Served Cold, Futility Belt, or Stiff Upper Lip. I believe a good set of skills to boost would be Brain Freeze, Donnybrook, and Futility Belt. The effect of this class mod should be removed entirely and replaced with Cyro immunity along with any Cyro damage taken restoring some percentage of health. This class mod would become way more useful and would make having the Cyro element on your splash weapons much more useful. At the very least, it would be interesting to play around with.

Conductor:

  • Current Effects: Zane gains up to 50% Bonus Shock Damage based on his remaining action skill duration. The more duration remaining, the greater the bonus. This effect stacks.
  • Current Skills Boosted: Adrenaline, Borrowed Time, Good Misfortune.

It seems the intention behind this class mod is to enable players to keep Zane’s action skills up and rewarding them with bonus shock damage while doing so. I think this is a decent idea, but a poorly executed attempt at it. Adrenaline is an almost entirely wasted skill on this class mod for two reasons, one is that it’s entirely unnecessary to have once you have the guardian skill Topped off as that already gives a 200% increase to cooldown rate while shields are full, greatly diminishing the impact Adrenaline has on your cooldown rate as it also only applies when your shields are full. And secondly, the idea with this class mod is to keep your action skills up, which Adrenaline adds no benefit to. To also add onto the poor execution, since you aren’t using the Seein’ Dead while using the Conductor, you won’t be activating Good Misfortune enough to keep your action skills up or their durations full, greatly reducing the impact the bonus shock damage will have.

This class mod desperately needs a way of keeping action skills up during the entirety of combat to be effective, so the one major thing I would suggest adding to this class mod would be to add the effect of when applying any shock status effect to an enemy you have a 25% chance of resetting your action skill durations. Having this effect would make it much easier to make use of the 50% bonus shock damage while not needing to constantly get kills to keep it at maximum. I would also suggest increasing the damage bonus from 50% to 100%, as shock generally isn’t the most useful element and is not as impactful as Zane’s SNTNL Cyro anointment or just using two different ASE bonus 50% elemental damage. I would also like to swap out Adrenaline for a different skill, but there isn’t any obvious choice for a skill that would fit this class mod in my opinion. I would probably boost either Praemunitus, Cool Hand, or Violent Violence to give this class mod a bit more punching power.

Executor:

  • Current Effects: Kill Skill: Whenever Zane kills an enemy he gains increased accuracy, handling, critical hit damage, status effect damage and status effect chance.
  • Current Skills Boosted: Good Misfortune, Playing Dirty, Violent Violence

Prior to the release of DLC 1 and Mayhem 2.0, or even Mayhem 4, the Executor class mod was Zane’s go-to class mod. Looking back on that now, it’s sad realizing that his best class mod was one with only a 20% bonus crit damage and that boosted Playin’ Dirty with Violent Violence. Without knowing the exact percentage bonus this class mod now gives, it’s hard to suggest changes, but from briefly using it, I know that it isn’t high enough to make it worth considering over the Seein’ Dead class mod. The skills this class mod boosts are alright, but without a way of activating Good Misfortune without getting kills it goes under utilized on this class mod. If the effects of Seein’ Dead were swapped with Seein’ Red, this class mod probably wouldn’t need much changing. But with that said, I’ll make some suggestions that can be made for it if that isn’t happening.

This class mod should give both a 25% or even 50% bonus effectiveness to all of Zane’s kill skills and increase the duration of all his kill skills by 7 to 15 seconds. If these two effects were added, this would enable players to more easily keep their kill skills up while also putting it on more equal footing with the Seein’ Dead class mod which also gives a 25% bonus effectiveness to all of Zane’s kill skills. As for skills, I would consider swapping Good Misfortune out with Brain Freeze or consider allowing 1 point boosts on class mods to one point skills and give a boost to either Confident Competence or Death Follows Close, allowing this class mod to really stand out from under the shadow of Seein’ Dead.

Hustler:

  • Current Effects: Damaging an enemy with a non-critical hit grants Zane a stack that gives a 25% critical hit damage bonus and a 5% chance for non-critical hits to score a critical hit. The effect can be stacked 5 times and the non-critical hit bonus uses all stacks when triggered.
  • Current Skills Boosted: Adrenaline, Brain Freeze, Like a Ghost

The Hustler is one of Zane’s strangest class mods as it’s entirely centered around boosting crit damage, something Zane only has one skill involved with even remotely which is Brain Freeze. Without the boosts to crit damage on this class mod getting crazy, I feel having a class mod centered entirely around crit damage is wasted on Zane since he has no other means of boosting crit damage. In my opinion, the effect of this class mod needs to be scrapped entirely and replaced with something else entirely different.

Currently, I don’t have any ideas for unique effects that I feel should be put on this class mod. If anyone posts on this thread with any good suggestions I will edit them in here and give you credit for the idea. As for skills on this class mod, I don’t think any of them belong on this class mod and should also be entirely replaced with 3 different skills. In my opinion there is just nothing to work with to fix this class mod, it needs to be entirely replaced.

Infiltrator:

  • Current Effects: Zane’s Weapon Damage and Movement Speed are increased. The lower his shield, the greater the bonus. Whenever Zane activates his action skill he breaks his shield.
  • Current Skills Boosted: Like a Ghost, Supersonic Man, Violent Momentum.

The Infiltrator is pretty much a poor man’s Antifreeze now with the addition of the very strange of effect of breaking shield when starting an action skill. This effect could’ve been useful on other Vault hunters, or if there were more shields, weapons, or skills of Zane’s that made use of shields being empty, but Zane has multiple skills like Confident Competence and Adrenaline which rely on Zane’s shields being full and only one which is made more effective when his shields are depleted, that being Rise to the Occasion. This class mod really lacks identity and in its current form has no use in any build.

I would replace the effect of this class mod entirely with an effect that greatly reduces the range at which enemies will detect you when the Digi-Clone is active. I would also replace the skill Like a Ghost with Trick of the Light. I’d also consider adding an additional effect of giving an additional 50% bonus Cyro or Radiation damage against enemies targeting the clone. I think this class mod would at the very least be interesting to use while mobbing and offer a unique playstyle in the theme of an Infiltrator.

Seein’ Dead:

  • Current Effects: Whenever Zane damages an enemy with his weapon, he has a chance to automatically activate all of his Kill Skills. Additionally, his Kill Skills gain a +25% effect bonus.
  • Current Skills Boosted: Donnybrook, Violent Violence, Playin’ Dirty

Like I said in the introduction, I believe the effects of the Seein’ Dead class mod should be swapped with the effects of the Seein’ Red skill. This would make the rest of these class mods much more viable, create much more build diversity, and make the Seein’ Red capstone much more impactful.

I would at least consider leaving the 25% bonus kill skill effectiveness on the Seein’ Dead to offload some of the overall power the current effect of this class mod has. I would also consider replacing the Playin’ Dirty skill with either Violent Momentum or Violent Speed as boosting Playin’ Dirty really isn’t necessary, especially when the Executor already does.

Shockerator:

  • Current Effects: Grants Zane’s Digi-Clone the Binary System augment. Whenever Zane’s clone receives melee damage, it creates a shock nova around it.
  • Current Skills Boosted: Best Served Cold, Duct Tape Mod, Pocket Full of Grenades

I lied when I said the Techspert and the Cold Warrior were tied for being Zane’s worst class mod. This is definitely his worse class mod, giving him boosts to two skills reliant on grenades, and a skill far down the green tree that only gives Cyro novas. On top of that, the effect only gives Zane’s clone its worst augment and additional Cyro novas when it is meleed. This class mod too should be entirely scrapped and replaced with something else. Just going off the skills, maybe centering the class mod around grenades and launchers would be an interesting route to go down. You could give it the effect of 50% bonus movement speed while holding a launcher and 100% bonus slide speed while holding a launcher and giving boosts to any of Violent Speed, Violent Momentum, Pocket Full of Grenades, Duct Tape Mod, Supersonic Man, or Cold Bore and also renaming the class mod to like ‘Demolition Man’. The bottom line is that nothing about this class mod makes sense, and is definitely both his strangest and worst class mod currently.

Techspert:

  • Current Effects: Kill skill. +15% chance on kill to recharge SNTNL cooldown and duration.
  • Current Skills Boosted: Ready for Action, Rise to the Occasion, Really Expensive Jacket

Last but not quite least is the Techspert. The effect, even after the buff, is incredibly underwhelming when there is both the Seein’ Dead and Calm Cool Collected to reset action skill duration which both effect all of Zane’s action skills, not just SNTNL. On top of that, you have two fairly underwhelming skills boosted on this class mod, those being Rise to the Occasion and Really Expensive Jacket. This class mod really doesn’t have a purpose, and needs to pretty much be scrapped and replaced like some of his other class mods to be more impactful.

I would scrap the current effect of a percent chance to restore SNTNL’s duration and add the effect of boosting action skill damage by 100% as well as any damage done by any of Zane’s action skills to give a 20% chance of resetting action skill duration and cooldown. I would also replace all three skills with Synchronicity, Salvation, and Boom. Enchance. This would really boost the effectiveness of the Clone and Drone and potentially making the Drone’s damaging augments legitimately useful.

Final Thoughts:
Zane’s classmods overall need a lot of reworking to be made effective. Simply increasing the numbers/percentage bonuses of their current effects isn’t going to make them better, outside of possibly the Antifreeze. Time needs to be taken to scrap the worst of his class mods and give them more unique effects that warrant at least consideration by players. Swapping the effects of the Seein’ Dead class mod with the Seein’ Red skill would also aid in making at least some of these class mods worth considering as well. I hope some of these suggestions will be taken into consideration by the developers when making future changes to Zane’s class mods and I hope to see his class mods in a better state soon.

6 Likes

topped off and overkill should not exist at all… game would be much easier to balance then

4 Likes

Yea, Topped Off especially just gives essentially always on 200% cooldown rate which makes any skills for cooldown rate useless. If it didn’t exist, Adrenaline would actually be useful.

Have any input to give on any of my suggestions for changes?

what is fof?

Was a typo, meant for lol

yes i could give ton of feedback but it does not matter gbx does it in their own way they already changed 3 class mods and i do not see them taking away anything from players other than they acknowledged finally after a year that coms were garbage. sorry for off topic.

2 Likes

i like what i read
some things i want to add

1 antifreeze is a joke classmod around an annointment that doesnt exist anymore, i rly think giving it cryo immunity and basically turning cry dmg / slow you take and turn it into a buff, would make it so much better
so essentially if you start taking cryo dmg you instead get movespeed and if you would be at max cryo / frozen or close to you get a super buff that gives you that buff ur clone gets when consuming 3 granades

2 cold warrior should 1 increase elemental dmg by like 100% or 50% or whatever
then make ur actionskills able to apply random elemental damage if they inflict other elemental dmg
speak cryo or radiation for sntnl
any element wih clone or cryo
shield effects from the barrier if you got the skill with that

3 conductor is an interesting idea, but in practice without seeing dead you cant do the infinite / long time actionskill duration which sucks
and the dmg gets rly low rly fast
so i would actually just change it so the dmg is either 75% per actionskill to keep the dmg high up longer
or make it PER actionskill you gain 40% flat
or give it something cool that refreshes actionskills somehow, we soon get a short actionskill and it would be dope to have, but you cant play them together

4 the executor is kinda basic… i tried it and it still doesnt feel that great honestly, it could totaly have a skill like 50% longer killskill duration or 25… it would help alot

5 hustler desperatly needs to count as normal crits or like fl4ks crits where you can still shoot a weakspot to get even higher crits
and it should not consume the stacks
you should stack them up and keep the stacks until you stop shooting for a while

6 infiltrator needs the new skilltree to have some no shield bonis / skills, to get some synergy like the lower the shield the stronger you get
if you have no shield killskills are constantly active or whatever

7 seeing dead rly needs to lose the activation and swap that to seeing red, rly desperatly…

8 shockraptor is the biggest joke lmao mod ever
it e super cool if the thing is a granade classmod enhancing granade dmg by 300% and giving him a chance to idk trigger a cryo nova when a granade hits

9 techspert needs to reset SNTNLs augments and increase its dmg by 100% - 200% then it would be good
cuz the drone aint that strong, but with tripple the dmg and almighty ordinance it be alot better

or give sntnl almighty ordinance augement and it fires every 5 seconds at its current target

1 Like

This logic makes no sense to me. If he’s deficient in getting Crit damage, then that’s exactly why he needs a mod like this, as it fills a much needed niche. A COM that increased crit damage for Fl4k? That would probably be a waste, since he already has so many means of doing crits. But for Zane? That’s actually a very good idea for a COM.

Crits of course are their own reward (even though this mod’s crits aren’t treated mathematically as pure crits, but that’s a separate issue), but as you mentioned yourself, Zane has one skill that particularly gels with crits: Brain Freeze. And it’s a hell of a skill, around which entire playstyles can be built. And that’s the key. See a manifestation of this in this thread: How I Made Zane's New Crap-Tier Class Mod God-Tier (+Save File)

6 Likes

The infiltrator com actually works really well with a CCC build if you pair it with the Rough Rider or Adrenaline Initiative. The only issue is that the only reason to run a CCC build is if you don’t own the Jackpot dlc and can’t get SD.

You can use it with conductor 100% shock bonus pretty well

Antifreeze: There’s some major issues with this COM. First of all, unlike the anointment that got removed, the antifreeze damage bonus is just additive to all of his other gun damage bonuses. The old anointment was multiplicative which gave it some one-shot potential on Zane. The second issue is, that whilst it does in fact help a bit against cryo, you still cannot slide when cryo’d, even though you can now be faster with cryo than without.

Cold Warrior: The primary effect is just hot garbage. I think for this COM to work, 2 things need to happen. 1) Give it an Icebreaker effect. Nothing fancy, just literally the same that you get as a prefix on artifacts. 2) Give it Brainfreeze instead of Ready for Action so you get more and easier freezes.

Conductor: Not Zane’s worst COM but not particularily good, either. I’d say replace Adrenaline (which is just useless) with Cool Hand for some extra reload speed or Praemunitus. Also, add a kill skill “After killing an enemy, deal an additional 25% shock damage for 8 seconds”

Executor: Kind of alright, but also pretty meh. I’d say maybe swap out Playing Dirty (a skill that is good but not worth boosting) for a guaranteed, single point in Death Follows Close. Also, add some fire rate to the primary effect kill skill.

Hustler: Could be good, but sadly doesn’t work as one would expect and suffers from 2/3 of its skills being pretty bad. Unlike OP I think having a crit based COM would be pretty neat, exactly because all of Zane’s other skills are gun damage, meaning it scales extremely well with anything that isn’t gun damage. But the “critical hits” on the Hustler aren’t actual crits but instead post-additive fake crits, meaning it’s just an additive flat gun damage bonus that also triggers crit effects. There’s lengthy threads about it. Just change it to proper crits.
Also, change the other skills to Confident Competence (1 point) and either Trick of the Light, Donnybrook or Synchronicity.

Infiltrator: The speed is nice, the skills are alright but it’s another bad, useless source of gun damage. I feel like the gun damage when shields are low or down should be replaced by some bonus cryo damage. Maybe allow it to give additional movement speed whilst an enemy is slowed.

Seein’ Dead: Is it too good? Probably. Is it basically the only thing keeping Zane remotely comparable to other Vault Hunters? Yes. I think Seein’ Dead could be due for some changes once Zane has other options that are equally viable, but until then it’s not that big of a deal.

Shockerator: This is supposed to be the definitive Clone COM, but it really doesn’t work all that well. I like that it gives Zane access to a third action skill augment, but it’s just not that great. I’d say, possibly do away with the Shock Novas entirely, change the augment to “Which one’s real?” and change the skills to Trick of the Light, Boom Enhance (1 point) and Donnybrook. That way, you’d get a tougher Digi-Clone who is more likely to draw enemy aggro and allows you to deal bonus cryo damage against enemies (I just threw Donnybrook in there because it’s one of the only skills that actually affect Clone Damage). At that point, the name also would maybe need to change because it wouldn’t have anything to do with shock damage anymore.

Techspert: A pretty weird class mod, honestly. Its primary effect exclusively affects SNTL but all of the skills are in the green tree and they are all kind of bad. Since it’s action skill based, just like the Shockerator, let’s throw in a free Boomsday. Also, change the effect to a chance to restore all action skills, not just SNTL. Change skills to Borrowed Time, Supersonic Man and Synchronicity.

I should’ve explained why I hold that opinion better; I feel the class mod is a waste on him because with Brain Freeze you want to be hitting real Crits, which isn’t what you want to do with the Hustler since you need to land body shots to get that random Crit chance. The Crit bonus from this class mod isn’t enough to justify not making use of Brain Freeze and an Ice Breaker artifact, which are two things used in many Zane builds. I feel the concept of this class mod would’ve been better utilized by Moze.

I don’t think going CCC with infilitrator is viable in M10, I feel there just isn’t enough damage you could get with your remaining skill points when going that far down green tree.

I’ve never tried using this setup in M10 before, so I could be wrong, but I don’t think its viable.

The game has been out over a year, Mayhem 2.0 has been out almost 6 months, why are broken class mods and simple weapon balancing problems still a thing? It’s basically saying that even if Gearbox had delayed launch and focused on just fixing the game for an entire year it still would have launched buggy and broken.

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I tested it out of curiosity yesterday, and it holds up surprisingly well on M10. Obviously it’s much less effective than SD, but you can mow down enemies just fine while also maintaining permanent action skill uptime.

The damage you sacrifice by going down the green tree can be made up for with the right anoints, stat rolls on the com, and the one and only Pearl.

I think Hustler probably synergises beautifully with a Brain Freeze & Ice Breaker build. That’s exactly how I plan to use it, though I haven’t tried it myself yet.

There are two points that I think you’re under-appreciating.

Firstly, Hustler, I believe, is the only mod that can give you extra points in Brain Freeze. So already you have a better chance of freezing enemies with this mod than without it.

Secondly, using this mod doesn’t mean you should stop trying to get real crits! You still aim for crits, but in the inevitable cases where you miss and get body shots, you now have a small chance to get a crit (and proc Brain Freeze) anyway… and get a damage bonus to boot.

Without a Cryo-centric build, Hustler seems very underwhelming to me. It would amount to little more than a slight increase in your mean DPS.

But in a cryo-centric build, where Brain Freeze is key, this mod gives you not one but two boosts to Brain Freeze. First in increasing its effectiveness, and second in increasing how often you can proc it. Seems pretty promising to me.

I see the Hustler as at best supplementary to a build centered around Brain Freeze, or any build making use of that skill. The body shot crits don’t occur often enough to get Freezes on its own, and the crit bonus the Hustler provides doesn’t effect actual crits. If the crit bonus it provided was meant for actual crits, and if its effect of providing a crit bonus would proc when hitting actual crits, it would be at least worth consideration.

But as it is right now, I see no reason to use a class mod for the chance to crit on body shots when the Seein’ Dead and even the Executor provide much more consistent damage that will make landing actual crits that much more impactful. I haven’t seen any use for it outside of facepuncher shenanigans which all the Vault Hunters can get a silly amount of damage out of.

Seems like we agree then.

Er, yes you do. We both just discussed it, and you just mentioned it in the previous paragraph: Brain Freeze. :wink:

You’re still thinking about crits in terms of damage. That’s the wrong way to think about it in this case. As someone who’s had extensive playtime with Cryo Zane, I can assure you that the impact crits have in a Brain-Freeze build is waaay more significant than any mere damage increase.

Brain Freeze is an absolute game-changer. It gives you offence and defence and crowd control all at the same time. If you know what you’re doing, you can zip around the battlefield keeping most enemies frozen almost all the time (or at the very least slowed). This gives you much greater control of the flow of the game: you can flank/attack/retreat at will, since frozen enemies can’t shoot you, and slow enemies can’t catch you. This, in turn, makes you less reliant on defensive skills from the Green tree, so you can put more points in more fun stuff.

And of course there are other benefits to Frozen enemies. With CCC they recharge your health, shields, and action skill, and with Ice Breaker they take more damage. And, most importantly of all, playing a Cryo build is just a lot of fun - certainly more so than a DPS-focused one, in my opinion. Playing a Cryo-centric build is the reason why I had a blast playing Zane at M10 for months, without once seeing the need to equip Seein’ Dead.

I equipped Seein’ Dead for the first time ever a few weeks ago, after having played Zane all year, and I haven’t been very impressed with it. It clearly gives the best DPS, but the playstyles it encourages don’t make the most of Zane’s potential, imo. I for one am glad that Hustler gives me another option.

Like I said, if you’re fixated on the damage increase Hustler gives you from crits, which is paltry indeed, you’re missing the bigger picture.

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I’m not arguing that Brain Freeze isn’t that impactful, I am saying that Hustler isn’t too impactful even for a build centered around Brain Freeze/CCC. If you’re going that far down green tree to pick up CCC, you will want to use a Seein’ Dead or Executor/Antifreeze to make up for lost damage you’ll have from either not going far down enough in blue tree to get your kill skills or not far down enough red tree to make clone useful enough.

I’m also not saying that you absolutely can’t use the Hustler at all, but that for endgame content it doesn’t hold up to even the Executor or Antifreeze.

Edit: to also add, I think you’re mistaking the strength of Brain Freeze for the strength of the Hustler class mod, Brain Freeze is super good whether or not you’re using the Hustler. Using a Hex Grenade for the drone to drop and a multi-projectile weapon on the clone will freeze all mobs quite effectively without you even needing to shoot them.

Well, I’m just one person, but my personal experience contradicts your statement. Like I wrote above, I’ve been doing just fine with Zane on solo M10 (mobs, bosses, Wotan, what have you), and until very recently, without Seein’ Dead. And as it happens, mostly without Executor or AntiFreeze too. I’ve mainly used Cold Warrior and Conductor.

I’m clearly a minority, and I’ve never understood the complaints people have about Zane. He’s always felt probably the most OP VH to me, and like I said, that’s without even using his most popular mods. I dunno, maybe I’m just a better Zane player than most, so I can get more juice by out of his playstyle without needing so much raw DPS. I wouldn’t have thought so, but it’s possible.