Welcome to our Stamina Dragonknight PvP Build for The Elder Scrolls Online [ESO]. This guide will take you through the Stamina DK PvP setup that we think is advantageous for players primarily focused on solo play at end game.
[Last Updated – February 12th, 2017 – Update 13 Homestead]
The purpose of the Butcher Player vs. Player (PvP) version is a self-sufficient stamina based solo build. We wanted to make something that can kill easily yet survive tough encounters. This build has a lot of sustain, burst but requires a lot of skill to play and master. The Dragonknight excels at generating ultimate and that’s what we focus on because Battle Roar gives us resources based on using ultimate. So with Update 13, we went heavy ultimate generation, using Onslaught for killing blows to sustain ourselves. With the default setup, you’re looking at 4,800 Weapon Damage and 35,000 stamina on my Nord so yeah, you’ll kill stuff. For leveling purposes, please refer to the Butcher PvE setup, this is made for end-game PvP. Here’s a quick rundown of the strengths and weaknesses of this build.
+ Massive burst
+ High mobility
+ Great survivablity
– Lacks AoE damage
– Harder to play with Clever Alchemist setup
Two Handed – Meant for killing opponents.
- Critical Rush (morph of Critical Charge | Two-Handed skill line) – A hard hitting gap closer that is used to gain advantage on opponents. The way to use this is immediately start strafing (turning sideways) after you charge. You practice always getting your opponents side so they cannot target you. This is very important for landing or avoiding Dizzying Swings. If you’re having trouble using this due to snares or immobilizes, use Shuffle first for immunity than launch into an attack.
- Rally (morph of Momentum | Two-Handed skill line) – Our major source of Brutality increasing our weapon damage, a heal over time (HoT) and a burst heal at the end, it’s too important not to have this on our bar. Keep this buff up and recast when duration is lower (around 10 seconds remaining) for a burst heal instead of using Vigor.
- Shattering Rocks (morph of Petrify | Earthen Heart skill line) – Most use Fossilize morph which is a great skill, however Shattering Rocks causes “Off-Balance” which we have Champion Point passives Exploiter that increase damage against Off-Balance enemies by 10%. I’d rather have more damage against an opponent than a brief immobilize in solo play.
- Dizzying Swing (morph of Uppercut | Two-Handed skill line) – Love it or hate it, a charged attack that if you land will hit hard. The key to using this ability effectively is positioning, knowing both the range of the animation and always facing your opponent. Use stuns FIRST to get an advantage on positioning rather than relying on this to stun the player.
- Executioner (morph of Reverse Slash | Two-Handed skill line) – We go with this morph so Onslaught hits harder against lower health players. Typically, we want to kill players with Onslaught to generate ultimate, but if that doesn’t work, cut them down with good old Executioner.
- [Ultimate] Onslaught (morph of Berserker Strike | Two-Handed skill line) – This ability was made for Dragonknights. A burst single target attack that refunds ultimate if you get the killing blow. Combine timely kill shots with Battle Roar for near limitless sustain. It’s not meant for AoE like Dawnbreaker or Take Flight, but if you’re going for massive solo kills, yeah try Onslaught.
Bow – Buffs and healing.
- FLEX Dragon Fire Scale (morph of Reflective Scale | Draconic Power skill line) – This is mainly our flex spot and most people can see some use of Reflective Scales (AKA Flappers). It can help let folks know they will have to approach you in order to fight (Sorcs and Snipers). Once you get comfortable with Line of Sight and playing defensive, switch to below skill.
- Volatile Armor (morph of Spiked Armor | Draconic Power skill line) – This skill got a massive buff and reflects a lot of damage to the opponent. Both great for duels and open world, you get damage reflect, Draconic Power passives to healing receive and armor and spell resistance. I suggest using this after learning how to avoid needless ranged damage.
- Poison Injection (morph of Poison Arrow | Bow skill line) – Really a useful pressure tool at range that can wither down opponents at low health. Typically we want to kill someone with Onslaught, but a kill is a kill and when someone reaches 50% or below, with this DoT on them and an highly effective ultimate waiting, they will feel the pressure.
- Shuffle (morph of Evasion | Medium armor skill line) – The dodge chance is very nice with this skill but primarily we use this for mobility since it provides immunity to snares and immobilizes. If you are Crowd Controlled (stunned) immediately break free and recast this with the Unchained Champion Point passive to save on your stamina.
- Igneous Shields (morph of Obsidian Shield | Earthen Heart skill line) – This gives us ultimate in combat, minor brutality buff, major mending and stamina back! On yeah, plus a shield. This skill is the cornerstone of my survival paired with Vigor immediately following for a massive heal.
- Resolving Vigor (morph of Vigor | Alliance War Assault skill line) – A great HoT though not a burst heal like Rally. Generally I cast this prior to engaging in combat for on going healing.
- [Ultimate] Corrosive Armor (morph of Magma Armor | Earthen Heart skill line) – I use this ultimate as an “oh-crap” button. Basically you’re going to be very hard to kill for over 10 seconds. And when I’m playing solo, eventually 12 people will team up on me trying to kill me so I use this combined with Shuffle, bow dodge roll and an Immovability potion to bounce and fight another day.
- Rally – 33 seconds for major brutality.
- Igneous Shield – 20 seconds for minor brutality.
- Volatile Armor – 20 seconds for major buffs and damage reflect.
- Shuffle – 20 seconds for major evasion.
- Clever Alchemist – 15 seconds out of 45 seconds when attacking.
Buff up with Rally, Igneous, Volatile Armor, potion for Alchemist (on bow) cast Shuffle for immunity and Crit Charge
Depending on how opponent reacts one of two things:
- They don’t pay attention, Dizzying Swing 1st, medium weave heavy attack (so hold down attack for .5 seconds), Onslaught. Unless they are getting massive heals, they will most likely die, if not Executioner to chop them down.
- They are paying attention to you. Shattering Rocks 1st, (no weave) Dizzying Swing, medium weave heavy attack (so hold down attack for .5 seconds), Onslaught. The only change is adding a stun to make sure the first Dizzying Swing lands.
Primarily you want an opponent to be at or around 30-40% health (10k health lets say) before you Onslaught. You want to land that as your killing blow to refund resources, but if it doesn’t immedately get ready to Executioner. Also keep pressure with Poison Injection and Dizzying Swing until they are at that critical 40% health point.
- Monster Helm – Blood Spawn – Obtained in Spindleclutch 2 Veteran Dungeon (helm) while shoulder can be obtained via the Undaunted Pledge system. This two piece is a great “tanky” set for solo play. You sacrifice burst for sustain and survivability.
- You can easily swap this in for something like Velidreth or Selene’s for even more damage, but I prefer survival first to all out damage.
- Primary 5 piece – Sword Singers – Obtained in overland Alik’r Desert – Singers is ideal for a Dragonknight specifically since we’re basically only doing damage with Two-Handed abilities. For something like a stamina sorcerer or templar, Automatons makes a better choice, but for all out Two-Handed damage, Singers wins.
- A simple crafting alternative is Hunding’s Rage though doesn’t preform nearly as well as Singers.
- Secondary 5 piece – Clever Alchemist – Crafted in Hew’s Bane 7 trait – I usually shy away from this set, but if you’re playing solo and want awe inspiring burst, try it out. Just remember this gear is very specific, you need to use your potion ON YOUR BOW BAR. It make take some practice to get good at this.
- An alternative is anything that gives you resources or speed. I’ve tried Foirds out with dodge roll and it’s great fun for solo though you’ll be missing out on tons of damage.
- Armor Weight – I like going 5 medium 1 light 1 heavy for maximum stats since Battle Roar gives us resources based on our overall pool.
- Traits – I prefer at least 5 impenetrable and 2 well-fitted since I dodge roll frequently to escape on my bow bar. On your primary weapon it’s ideal to have sharpened and back bar Prismatic with heavy attack weave to proc damage against vampires prior to charging in.
Mundus Stone – Warrior since we get so many amplification to our Weapon Damage.
Race – I play this as a Nord simply because that’s my tanking race. However, if I had to pick one for best all around PvP it would be Orc. Can you play this as anything? Yes, but Orc would be most effective due to its passives.
Food – Tri-Stat so you can get more shields and cast out of our magicka abilities.
Potions – Immovable, stamina and speed (Namaria’s Rot, Blessed Thistle and Columbine).
Attributes – All stamina 64/0/0.
Werewolf or Vampire – WW can be very strong if you bar the ultimate on the back for regeneration while on the move though without a self-cleanse I stay away from vampire unless in a group.
That concludes our Stamina Dragonknight PvP build for ESO. I hope you enjoyed this content and let us know if this was effective for you or if you have any improvements.