My feelings about the update:
I use KBM controls, and my setup from melee 2.0 is 'E' and mouse wheel were both bound to melee AND quick melee. What I could do is run around and spin the mouse wheel for quick melee, and then use the E key for combo timing and charge attacks/throws. That distinction between charge attacks and quick attacks worked very well for me, and affects my discussion points. 1. I was most excited about the new targeted slam, but so far it is kind of awkward because you have to aim down at a certain angle regardless of your altitude. If you aim too high, you do the mid-air attack in front of you and get no benefit from slam radius, or you aim too low and unintentionally slam attack, killing your momentum. I feel that charge attack timing could solve the issue.
While in the air: tap melee for aerial attack, 1-2 sec hold melee for slam, 2-3 sec hold for shoot or throw (glaives and gunblades can still slam, sigma & octanis can throw or slam). Charging gives you time to aim your slam (e.g float briefly and turn around in mid air to change slam direction). If slam attack isn't based on aiming angle you don't need to worry about accidentally doing it wrong because you were aiming 1 degree too high or low. It also means you can do a slam attack while aiming up e.g up at an enemy on a stair case, or do an aerial attack while aiming down. As it is now, you need to look away from enemies to slam attack them unless they are way below you. 2. Auto blocking. After the changes, a lot of people have mentioned that you can't block while running backwards. I tried this myself just now, and I can see this isn't the case. Once you do a melee attack your weapon stays out until you aim or shoot again, and you will auto block attacks from enemies you are pointing the reticle at. It takes some getting used to but I can see how it works, and now I actually block stuff with ease instead of having to equip my melee weapon specifically to block. It just feels weird at first not having to press a button to block. Where the new blocking system gets awkward:
- You need to have done a melee attack to bring out your melee weapon. If you never use the melee you will never auto block, even with a melee weapon equipped. As long as you are not shooting, reloading or charging a shot, you should auto block.
- If you are aim gliding and you do an aerial melee attack, you have to shoot or aim your gun to bring it back out. Usually you will be shooting at things below you, which means if you try to aim glide then aerial melee > shoot > aerial melee, you can accidentally slam attack and kill your momentum, because you will be shooting things below you, but need to aim up again to aerial melee.
- Some combos still rely on the redundant block button, which is now replaced by tapping the aim button (based on what I've read). This makes doing some combos really vertigo inducing especially if you have something with high% zoom like sniper rifles.
- You CAN technically glide block with your melee weapon, but you have to intiate your aim glide with the gun, then do a melee aerial attack without letting go of the aim glide button. If your finger slips just a little bit or if your mouse/controller is a bit dodgy, you will aim your gun again for a brief second and need to do another aerial attack to bring out your melee weapon while gliding.
- There is no indication anywhere that channeling is active, which means you might be unintentionally losing energy for each auto block.
Make auto blocking optional, keep the dedicated block button in.
Allow dedicated blocking even with a gun equipped.
3. Parry. Still kind of awkward since it relies on melee channeling, and there is no clear hud indicator to show that channeling is active.
It might be better as a riposte/counter to melee attacks e.g after auto-blocking enemy melee, have a small window for bonus damage on your next melee attack. The current parry system is less effective than spam attacking, and most enemies will just continue to shoot you in the face even when you stand right in front of them.
Large projectiles should be able to be parried into enemies. This includes bombard rockets, and stuff like opticor shots. There could be a parry mod which increase the damage of attacks parried into enemies, but based on the damage of your own weapon.
I believe parrying should not depend on channeling, and should either be built into auto blocking or based on good timing with the block button.
4. Channeling still does not feel useful, and the mods that exist for it are rarely useful on a weapon. It might make more sense if channeling was based on warframe mods e.g efficiency, strength, duration etc. I think you mentioned replacing it with a kind of 'devil trigger' type system? If so, the warframe stats suit that idea pretty well. AFAIK the only channeling mod that people use regularly is life strike (life strike would be a great aura).
I believe that existing channeling mods should be refunded into endo.