Welcome to the Elder Scrolls Online guide for the Champion System. The ESO Champion System is a form of alternate advancement, meant to keep players active and rewarded throughout their experience in Tamriel. The goal of this guide is to highlight the constellations, get you familiar with the system and provide some helpful tips for progression. Let’s get started!
The Champion System Guide Video here
Table of Contents
Elder Scrolls Online’s plan to roll out the Champion System in update 1.6 introduce a new type of advancement system. This is part two of their phasing out the Veteran Ranks and moving to a new type of account advancement where your progression is tied to your overall account. Keep in mind, this guide is written during testing and will change as content moves forward. I will do my best to update it whenever possible.
Why Champion System?
The purpose of this system is to broaden your game play and progression into a near infinite experience. During current testing, it takes about two hours to earn one Champion Point (CP). If you were to completely max out the system, you’d be sitting at 3,600 CP. That’s roughly one year of game time to earn these points (300 days in game!). It’s an extremely massive system. The reason why, it keeps you playing and keeps you progressing where other systems don’t. When you reach level cap in ESO, the fun has only just begun.
How do I earn CP?
In the game’s current form, CP are earned through experience gained in the Veteran Ranks (VR 1-14). Any experience for killing mobs, questing, PvP, turn-ins, etc now count to your account based Champion Progression. For people who love playing alternate characters (alts), this system benefits you. Because each CP earned applies to your account. If my Dragonknight is spec’d full tank and earns a CP, my Templar gets the point, too. Even if you like only having one character, everything you do on your main adds up over time. In essence, you earn CP by gaining experience.
There’s also an additional mechanic called Enlightenment. It’s ESO’s form of rested experience points (XP). In my own words, it’s a way for people who don’t play often to gain increased experience. If you haven’t played for a week, you will accrue Enlightenment making it easier to get the next Champion Point. This allows people who aren’t playing 10 hours a day to still “catch up.”
What can I spend CP on?
The first time you login, you’ll notice a new image on the top of your menu bar. This is how you access the Champion System and start spending those points. You can spend your points throughout three constellations, each with their own three separate trees. Red is the Warrior, green is the Thief and blue is the Mage. Every time you earn a CP, it will be added to one of the three constellations. So you’ll need to spread your points throughout the three constellations. For instance, any player with a VR 14 upon launch of 1.6 will receive roughly 70 CP to spend. Instead of having a pool of 70 points to spend however you want, you’ll get 24 in red, 23 in green, and 23 in blue for a total of 70. We’ll get to strategies on how to spend these later, but I want to talk about two categories of CP
The overall interface allows you to move left or right to select your constellation. Select one by left clicking to be taken into the tree where you can spend points. You’ll also see available points per constellation directly in the middle of the screen. After you select a specific tree, you’ll be taken to the below screen shot.
Here’s the Tower tree in the Thief Constellation. Confused yet? Don’t worry, it takes time playing with this to figure it out. But, if it were easy no one would read my guides 🙂 There’s basically only four items you can spend your points on in this tree (Warlord, Magician, Sprinter, and Bashing Focus). This will enhance something and you can mouse over it to see what it’s effect is. Every point you spend will accumulate in this tree. At certain thresholds (10, 30, 75, 120 CP) you’ll unlock special passives. Let me try to make sense of this in one sentence
You gain CP by earning XP which you spend through three constellations each with three unique trees each containing a maximum of 400 points to spend
If you’ve never watched one of my videos, now would be the time because it’s somewhat confusing to understand, and you actually move around in the system. However, let’s move on and show you exactly what’s in each three constellation and each of the night trees.
There is also a calculator available on the website: Click here to go to the world’s first champion point calculator for ESO.
The Apprentice is a nice magicka based tree that offers the spell critical passive after spending 30 points (Spell Precision). I highly recommend any offensive or defensive casters to at least spend 30 points here out of their Mage Constellation.
Blessed Increases the effectiveness of any healing you initiate by (0-25%) Spell Erosion Increases the amount of Spell Resistance your spells ignore by (0-25%) Elfborn Increases your Spell Critical damage and healing by (0-25%) Elemental Expert Increases your Flame, Frost, and Shock damage by (0-25%) Vengeance Rank 10 Guarantees your next spell will be a critical hit after you block three spells. Spell Precision Rank 30 Increases your spell critical rating by 12%. Foresight Rank 75 Reduces the Magicka cost of your next spell by 80% after you drink a potion. Arcane Well Rank 120 Gives you a 20% chance when you kill an enemy of opening an Arcane Well, which restores X Magicka to you and any allies within 2.5 meters of the enemy.
The Atronach is the weaker of the three mage trees in my opinion. It doesn’t offer that good passives though the added weapon damage is a must for damage dealers. I’ll add points in here after I max my The Apprentice (casters) or The Ritual (for weapon classes).
Blade Expert Increases the damage of your light and heavy attacks with daggers, swords, and two handed swords by (0-25%) Staff Expert Increases the damage of your light and heavy attacks with Destruction and Restoration Staves by (0-25%) Heavy Weapon Expert Increases the damage of your light and heavy attacks with maces and axes by (0-25%) Bow Expert Increases the damage of your light and heavy attacks with bows by (0-25%) Retaliation Rank 10 Increases the damage of your next physical attack by 30% after blocking a heavy attack. Riposte Rank 30 While blocking, grants a 15% chance to return X damage to the attack when you block a melee attack. This can only happen once every 5 seconds. Butcher Rank 75 Light and heavy weapon attacks deal 5% extra damage to targets below 25% health. Tactician Rank 120 Sets enemies off balance when you successfully roll dodge to avoid their attack.
Mighty Increases your physical damage by (0-25%) Precise Strikes Increases the critical damage of your physical attacks by (0-25%) Piercing Increases the amount of armor your physical attacks ignore by (0-25%) Thaumaturge Increases your damage with poison, disease and magic by (0-25%) Opportunist Rank 10 Increases the damage of your next physical attack by 50% after you interrupt a target. Perfect Strike Rank 30 Increases your weapon critical by 12%. Exploiter Rank 75 Increase your damage against off balance enemies by 10%. Last Stand Rank 120 Grants Major Heroism when you fall below 20% health, increasing your ultimate gain by 3 every 1.5 seconds for 8 seconds. Can only occur once every 30 seconds.
Most players will eventually spend a lot of points here as The Tower has cost reduction for magicka and stamina. However, the passives are a little uninspiring at high levels leaving this one of the weaker Thief trees.
Warlord Reduces the stamina cost of spells and abilities by (0-15.8%) Magician Reduces the magicka cost of spells by (0-15.8%) Bashing Focus Reduces the stamina cost of bash attacks by (0-25%) Sprinter Reduces the cost of sprinting by (0-24%) Ensnare Rank 10 Grants a 33% chance to reduce an enemy’s movement speed by 20% for 3 second any time you hit them with a bash attack. Inspiration Boost Rank 30 Increases inspiration gain by 20%. Mara’s Gift Rank 75 When killed heal all allies in a 8 meter radius for X. War Mount Rank 120 Improves your mastery with mounts, removing all stamina costs outside of combat.
The Lover is what I consider the better of the “sustained” trees because of the passives. Both Synergizer and Windrunning will come in handy on any class/race making this my choice for sustained stamina and or magicka.
Arcanist Increases your magicka regeneration by (0-25%) Healthy Increases your health regeneration by (0-25%) Mooncalf Increases your stamina regeneration by (0-25%) Tenacity Increases the amount of magicka and stamina your heavy attacks restore by (0-15.8%) Plentiful Harvest Rank 10 Grants you a 10% chance to double the yield from normal resource nodes. Synergizer Rank 30 Grants 2 ultimate any time you activate a synergy. Master Gatherer Rank 75 Reduces gathering times by 50%. Windrunning Rank 120 Increases your movement speed by 2%. This applies to all types of movement. Also increases health and magicka regeneration by 10% while sprinting.
The Shadow has some interesting passives made for the sneaky sneaky. As a PvPer, I can see making full use of this tree for reduction in break free. Consider Tumbling and Elusive must have passives for Cyrodiil.
Elusive Reduces the duration of all snare, fear, and disorient effects on you by (0-24%) Tumbling Reduces the stamina cost of roll dodge and break free by (0-18%) Shade Reduce the stamina cost of moving with in stealthy by (0-15.8%) Nimble Reduces damage dealt to you by (0-25%) when you roll dodge. Fortune Seeker Rank 10 Increases the amount of gold you find in treasure chest by 50% Merchant Favored Rank 30 Reduces the cost of armor repairs by 10% Treasure Hunter Rank 75 Increases the quality of items you find in treasure chest Shadowstrike Rank 120 After killing a target with a heavy attack, enter stealth for 2.5 seconds.
The Steed has a good mix of tanking and PvP passives making it a useful tree. The one I plan on spending points into early on is Resistant, basically replacing Impenetrable gear though having zero effect in PvE. You can really customize your tank with all the added benefits to blocking as well.
Block Expertise Reduces the cost of blocking by (0-25%) Spell Shield Increases spell resistance by (0-25%) Resistant Reduces the amount of damage you take from critical hits by (0-25%) Medium Armor Focus Increases your armor by (0-13%) Invigorating Bash Rank 10 Gives you a 20% chance to restore X health when you bash an enemy. Phase Rank 30 After roll dodging, your armor and spell resistance is increased by X for 3 seconds Shield Expert Rank 75 Increases your armor and spell resistance of shields by 75% Reinforced Rank 120 When activating block, gain a damage shield for X every 10 seconds.
The Lady is my favorite of the Warrior Constellations for the amount of game changing passives you have. Yet another heavy PvP tree, this one gives you health back for getting critically hit and dishing out critical hits. I plan on putting 120 points into this tree specifically for Unchained, one of the best passives.
Elemental Defender Reduces flame, frost, and shock damage dealt to you by (0-25%) Thick Skinned Reduces the damage you take from damage over time effects by (0-24%) Hardy Reduces poison, disease, and magic damage dealt to you by (0-25%) Light Armor Focus Increase your armor by (0-13%) while wearing 5 or more pieces of light armor Spell Absorption Rank 10 Restores X magicka when you take magic damage equivalent to 30% of your health. This can only occur once every 10 seconds. Resilient Rank 30 Restores X health when you are hit by a critical hit Critical Leech Rank 75 After critically striking a target, restore X health. This can only occur once every 5 seconds. Unchained Rank 120 Reduces the stamina cost of abilities by 80% for 3 seconds after breaking free of a stun, knockdown, fear, disorient or stagger.
The Lord is another great tree for those that want to optimize healing received. Combine these passives with the Argonian 6% healing received and even some gear and you’ll be a monster on the battlefield.
Bastion Increases the effectiveness of damage absorbing effects by (0-24%) Nourishing Increases the effectiveness of healing potions by (0-25%) Quick Recovery Increases the effectiveness of healing received by (0-15.8%) Heavy Armor Focus Increase your armor by (0-13%) while wearing five or more pieces of heavy armor. Field Physician Rank 10 Reduces damage received while resurrecting another player by 15%. Infusion Rank 30 Increases another player’s magicka regeneration by X for 8 seconds after you resurrect them. Revival Rank 75 Absorbs X damage for 5 seconds after you are resurrected. Determination Rank 120 Absorbs X damage for 15 seconds after drinking a potion.
Here are some valuable tips I’ve learned so far.
Yeah, that’s a terrible heading, but the idea has some merit. If you want to earn max CP, start questing, killing mobs, anything that earns you XP. I plan on finishing up old Dolmens, Skyshards, and Public Dungeons I had no reason finishing. Not to mention the awesome story quest in upper Craglorn. Most people don’t know these are dailies even Cyrodiil holds 50+ quest outside of the PvP ones. With a 20 hour respawn, you would be hard pressed to do every single quest within one day. So get out and start “doing stuff” to earn CP.
When testing my builds I kept in mind I’d have 70 points to spend out of the gate. You start feeling pretty powerful around 90 points, because then you can hit 30 points in each of the tree constellations and start earning some valuable passives. The trick to making the Champion System work is not mixing up your CP. Spend them in one of each of the three constellations FIRST to get passives unlocked. Then move on to the next tree. Let me show you.
Building a Melee DPS
- Blue – The most advantageous 30 point passive is Perfect Strike from The Ritual tree, upping my weapon critical by 12%. To get there, I plan on dumping 10 points into Piercing, Mighty, and Precise Strikes. This takes advantage of diminishing returns yet I still hit that key 30 point mark.
- Green – With ultimate generation nerfed, I need something to tune up my ult gain and Synergize from The Lover tree is a quick 30 point passive that will help. I’ll get there by spending 15 points on Mooncalf and 15 on Tenacity to increase stamina regeneration and resource return on heavy attacks.
- Red – I plan on wearing medium armor and using this character for PvP, so The Steed tree makes perfect sense. I’ll put 15 CP into Medium Armor Focus and another 15 CP into Resistant increasing my armor and resistance to critical. Plus I’ll have a nice 30 point passive after dodge rolling thanks to Phase.
Now you can see where I’m going with this and how I’ll be building characters in the future. I don’t want to give you every combo, because this adds another layer of complexity on a massive character progression system. It may seem hard at first, but I plan on adding “Champion Points” section to each of my builds. Hopefully this will give you a starting point for your own builds as you customize some of my ideas. Which is the entire idea behind my site.
The 120 point passive is the most important one to go after. Ideally, you want to stay within the same tree within the same constellation UNTIL you reach 120. That way you unlock a major passive, than you can move on. Let’s do an example of a player who didn’t read my guide doing this with 360 CP to spend. Let’s call him player X. Another player who loves my site (I know this is corny) will be player A with the same 360 CP to spend. Here’s what they do.
Player X setup
- Apprentice – 20
- Atronach – 60
- Ritual – 40
- Tower – 25
- Lover – 25
- Shadow – 70
- Steed – 110
- Lady – 5
- Lord – 5
Player A setup
- Apprentice – 0
- Atronach – 0
- Ritual – 120
- Tower – 0
- Lover – 120
- Shadow – 0
- Steed -120
- Lady -0
- Lord -0
Player X spread their CP out throughout various trees within constellations. With 360 CP, they didn’t even manage to get one major passives from any tree. Now Player A who’s an avid reader gets a blocking bubble via the Steed, an ultimate gaining boost when low health and increase movement speed by 2%! There are many combos that will be effective, but the point I’m trying to make is hit those key numbers to unlock the passives before moving on. Spending 110 points in the Lover tree just to dump 5 here and 5 there misses out on a key passive.
I foresee a million (maybe even a billion) different unique combinations and builds coming out of this. ESO’s progression and character build is second to none in my opinion. This MMO makes your character feel unique and special. Throw in the massive Champion System and my character builds just got a whole lot more complex. I hope you enjoyed this article and I plan on updating it as things change.
CP Updated with Thieves Guild
A lot has changed with CP in ESO Patch 2.3.5 and here’s some information that will help with readjusting ones characters.
Here’s a description of how his CP spreadsheet works – http://tamrielfoundry.com/
Second is a example parse and ratios – http://forums.
Lastly the spreadsheet that has two tabs for stamina/magicka builds and CP layouts based on testing – https://docs.google.com/
A basic layout of CP for PvPers here: https://darkelves.com/champion-points/
Spreadsheet and ratios here: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1ktbYDsiyI7W6v5k2JFSHJPSUw5p0RRaIW_-K3MBIbr8/edit?pref=2&pli=1