Temporal Warden: How to Play
The class also has a pretty unique ‘legit-retry-once-per-zone’ mechanic (tier 4 See the Thread skill from Chronomancy tree) which allows you to basically travel a few turns back in time if something went wrong or you died (provided you had activated the talent before the encounter). This mechanic is also accessible through the Revisionist History prodigy – and even then, as a Temporal Warden, you can have both.
Another personal pick of mine would probably be an Alchemist. Despite some people calling this class weak on the forums, I would argue instead that Alchemist is well suited to deal with probably anything the game can throw at you without even looking it in the eyes. You also have a golem which can be geared to either tank or deliver the damage while distracting your foes away from you. And it’s a pretty straightforward class to develop and play – pick your element (or probably few, if you know what you’re doing), throw the bombs in advance around corners, distract your enemies with your golem; you can’t go wrong with building up high dmg wide range bombs of a single chosen element ASAP while gearing yourself for dmg pen and +% and your golem for tanking and survivability. Just remember that you’re still a fragile mage and all the survivability advices still apply.
Some good racial picks for Alchemist would be Higher (vision range 10+, possible telepathy, magic dmg bonuses), Ogre (more effective inscriptions +one more, can wield two-handed staff in one hand/shield in the other) and Shalore (global speed bonus, critical chance/power, invisibility, can increase buffs/decrease debuffs duration). Any race except for Krog should do fine, but those are the ones that synergize well with general Alchemist playstyle and abilities.
You will most likely need to buy at least one additional inscription slot for a cat point so you could have a shield/mana surge/debuff cleanser as well as some additional healing/escape/distraction option, or even another shield (you can inscribe only max of two at a time though). As for prodigies, the list isn’t very big, but isn’t a demanding either.
My personal favourites are Crafty Hands (two more item types to imbue with gems), Eye of the Tiger (general all-around talent recharger), Worldly Knowledge (for some of Group 3 talent trees), Meteoric Crash (for, well, a meteoric crash) and Blighted Summoning (back in the days when it was offering an additional Reaver talent tree to your golem; probably irrelevant rn but I suppose it could still be of some use/fun, hadn’t tested it yet myself).
A word of caution: while Alchemist isn’t that lot of a reading talent-wise as some other classes (unlike the aforementioned TW for instance), it still requires a careful and thoughtful approach. Pay attention to what synergies you can have with your chosen element and try to exploit it whenever possible. If you manage to survive early game, you should tear through the rest without much of an effort (yes, even the Crypt, though it’s probably a good idea to avoid it anyway).