This is a guide on making your bots useful for higher difficulties and twitch / deeds. I used to have almost 100% completion ratio on legend / twitch / deeds with bots pre-WoM but WoM made them a bit worse, especially with handling specials but they are still very capable.
Guide to Making Bots Effective and Useful
Basics, Tier List and Team Comps
First of all, playing with only bots and playing 2 humans and 2 bots is very different. Mainly because of bots only following 1 person so if you're playing 2 + 2 both of you need to be aware of positioning and make sure your bots move to where you want them during fights.
Something very important to make sure your bots stay alive is always fighting in a good position, no matter if the horde already started, or you have a boss, you kite and push up to where you need to be and that place should be close to a wall, preferably with a place to break Line of Sight close by (for gunners and fire rats). You want to minimize directions the enemies can from home and hit you but be able to push forward or backwards if gas or AoE hits you (you should always move from your position as soon as you hear gas being thrown, don't wait for it to land since it's most likely going to hit you). Sometimes you have to run further from your position just to get the bots there faster, play around with how to get them to a position you want so it happens naturally in the future.
Positioning is 50% of the fight, your bots can 3-man hordes aslong as your in a good position.
Most classes are usable but here's my tier list:
- S: Mercenary, Ironbreaker.
- A: Witch Hunter Captain, Waystalker, Unchained.
- B: Zealot, Foot Knight, Handmaiden, Pyromancer.
- C: Battle Wizard, Bounty Hunter, Slayer.
- D: Huntsman, Shade.
Best Team comps:
- Merc, Ironbreaker, WHC, Player (Tanky and great CC).
- Merc, Waystalker, Ironbreaker, Player (Not as tanky but better at dealing with specials, good if you often wipe because of specials).
- Unchained, Merc, Ironbreaker, Player (Super tanky, great cc and survivability. You need to go on a high dmg class though).
Gear and Talents
Most of the time, wide sweep and cc weapons are going to improve your bots dramatically. 2h hammers are the best weapons for bots hands down since they will allow the bots to create space for themselves which leads to getting hit less. And most of their attacks aren't going to be great so it's important that their hits are effective.
Best bot weapons in order, starting with best first.
- Bardin: 2h hammer, Shield + Weapon, 2h axe, Dual Hammers.
- Kruber: 2h hammer, X-sword, 2h sword, Shield + Weapon.
- Saltzpyre: 2h sword, A&F.
- Kerillian: Glaive, Spear, Shield and spear.
- Stats on melee: 5% Attack Speed, 30% Block Cost Reduction. Trait: Swift Slaying.
For ranged weapons I would suggest handgun, crossbow, longbow, hagbane, drakeguns, fireball staff.
Stats for ranged doesn't matter too much unless you're looking for breakpoints but crit is nice if you run ammo back on crits so they can snipe more specials.
- Necklace: 20% Health, 30% Block Cost reduction, Barkskin.
Only necklace you need, Barkskin is great cause they will get hit and this allows them to take more dmg from specials and stay alive when they get downed for longer. They WILL take damage so it's best to mitigate that. Block Cost reduction is great cause it also let's them take more hits while reviving and not interrupting it.
- Charm: 5% Attack Speed, 10% vs Armor.
Skaven or chaos is fine instead of armor, even infantry, but armored units are going to give them most trouble.
- Trinket: 30% Revive Speed, 10% Cooldown (Curse resistance if you're having trouble with books but learning to play without it is better).
Bots getting their revives on you interrupted are usually sooo close and annoying, the 30% revive speed is so good to save both them and you from elite overheads or leeches. If you don't feel like it's needed you can go stamina recovery instead but revive speed can save your games.
Playstyle to Make Bots Effective
Your job is mainly to prevent bot dmg and take out specials and bosses fast, when you agro elites I like to get behind them and turn them away from bots so they don't stack and get hit. Make sure you are in a good position during big fights that gives you good vision and also the tools to handle specials in that area/move away from aoe dmg. Never fight near ledges or drops that can seperate the team or send you flying down a cliff if unlucky. Always push forward if you can, even while fighting, the more time it takes for you to finish the more you're likely to fail. This does not mean you should rush it but learn to keep good tempo and watch out for boss triggers and patrols. If you have good CC weapons and stagger ults the bots can crush hordes. But it's good to start of with your own ult during fights to get a good start.
Sometimes you will have to waste ults/bombs just to stagger enemies so they don't take hits from elites. You can designate Ironbreaker for healshare but I prefer to have him getting temp hp. Make sure you carry bandages and bots keep draughts so you can heal whoever needs it. I also think it's important to let bots carry grims and don't hold your potions too long since they won't be using them. Having proxy trait can be nice to boost a bot during fights but 50% duration will usually be more effective.