Obviously it depends on your style, and the way you want to play the game. If you want melee, definitely a destroyer is the best choice. As for "survivability", i've played for a while and i could recommend you these builds:
- Alchemist/summoner (the second/middle tab of the skill trees): nothing like a wall of minions between your enemies and you. Go for the center "active" skills (nether imp, and both golems) and max the ranged weapons mastery and pet mastery. Eventually, get the buffs for your minions (after having maximized the summons), and leave your charm spell mastery to last. Get your pet to summon zombies and skeleton. You get to summon another skeleton, zombies, archers and let your fourth spell be a "heal all" one. For your stats, go with 3/2 (dex/defense), and you're all set. For me, this is the "least dying" build. If the idea of an "alchemist archer" bugs you, go with rifles and keep the steampunk feeling!
- Destroyer titan (second/middle tab): one point on soul rend is enough on the beginning (you can max it when you have all the skills you want). Titan Stomp and Frost Shield are the skills you'll want to max as soon as you get them. The first will keep you safe from mobs surrounding you, and the second turns you invulnerable (kinda exagerating there, but it is as good as they come for defensive skills on this game). Go for Doomquake before Seismic Burst (my opinion, of course). While maxing these, obviously, pick your favorite passives. I'd say forget ranged weapons expertise (i like my destroyer toe to toe with foes) and go with martial weapons expertise. If you want the extra defense, get armor expertise from the spectral tree and add yourself a good shield (i play this build with huge 2 handed weapons). When facing a large number of enemies, frost shield yourself, get them to surround you, titan stomp them to knock them back and stun some of them; if their numbers aren´t as big, you can then pick them with your weapon. If there are a lot of enemies, then doomquake... if you so desire, add a good seismic burst. As for stats, you can keep them 3/2 or 2/3 (strength/defense), depending on wha´ts more important to you, dealing more damage or resisting more damage. I didn´t have much problems with this build, and, as i already stated, i used 2 handers for this one.
- Vanquisher marksman (first tab): I didn´t like much this build but, anyway. It doesn´t matter much what skills you get or how you get them, except for one: "explosive shot". Max this one, and spam it till your opponents are dead. If you want to add some spice, get some traps from the Arbiter skilltree and some summons as spells. Prepare to run from the odd monster that gets to you. Stat wise, you can keep it 3/2 (Dexterity/defense)- As i said, i didn´t like this build much but it works.
These are the builds i can remember now. Hope you like 'em. Sobrex