This guide is currently updated for the Honorbound patch.

Hi, I’m Zorex from Mystel (EU). I’ve been a warrior tank main since the Wounded World patch. I stuck with the class through the release of brawler which largely made warrior tanks obsolete, and buffs to other classes since then which made it harder and harder to hold aggro as a warrior. As such, I have a bit of experience with making warrior tanking work in spite of how bad it used to be compared to other tanks.

Since the warrior revamp has recently come to NA and EU, many warriors are looking to start tanking, and I’ve been getting many questions about how to play it. So I decided to write this guide to organize my thoughts on warrior tanking in one place. This guide is based on a healthy mix of theorycrafting, practical considerations, and my personal experience.


The Basics

I’d like to start this guide by talking a bit about the fundamental aspects of how warrior tanking works. It’s important to know these things before you start playing warrior tank seriously, both if you’re new to tanking, but also if you’ve played other tank classes before as warrior tank has a completely different playstyle.

If you’re completely new to tanking in general, I recommend you go have a look at the basic tanking guide first, then come back to this guide.

Warrior DD/Tank Differences

Probably the most significant difference between warrior DD and tank is that you cannot play with a fixed rotation as a tank. Since you need to dodge, block, or mitigate attacks very often, it’s basically impossible to stick to such a rotation and still do decent DPS. As a tank, it’s better to just pick the best skill or combo you have available at any given time, while factoring in current edge, and use that. In other words, warrior tanks play with a priority system.

Since you’re tanking and have access to Cross Parry, you can block cancel the wind-down animation on many skills. This translates into a significant DPS boost and is required to tank effectively since aggro decay kicks in fast.

You’ll need to actively maintain your Combative Strike debuff as it no longer gets overwritten since you’re the tank. This is only something you have to think about if you’re forced away from the boss due to a mechanic; outside of that, it should always be up as long as you’re actively attacking. You also need to make intelligent use of your Infuriate skill as it provides a massive boost to party DPS.

Tank Class Comparison

The primary strengths and weaknesses of each tank class are:

A lancer shines with a party of competent people. If damage dealers properly take advantage of Adrenaline Rush and Guardian Shout, the party will get the best clear time possible compared to other tank classes. For that reason, lancer works best if you consistently run with good players. Lancer has relatively low personal DPS, so it’s not great at carrying mediocre parties.

Brawler has traditionally been considered the game’s damage carry tank. A brawler has no party buffs but boasts much higher personal DPS than a lancer, thanks to Growing Fury. This makes brawler a great pick if you frequently run with random people who may or may not be good at playing their class. Brawler is generally not preferred for parse runs.

Warrior tank is similar to brawler in that it have very high personal DPS, thanks in large part to Scythe and Deadly Gamble, but has no party buffs. Unlike brawler, however, it’s played more aggressively by using damage mitigation skills instead of blocking everything. Warrior tank has significantly more survival tools and stronger block skills than other tanks. On the other hand, warrior tank takes much more skill to play effectively.

In a sense, warrior tank can be thought of as brawler, but better – assuming you put in the effort to learn it properly. If you like the idea of aggressive, fast-paced tanking with a high skill cap, warrior tank is what you’re looking for.

Offense/Defense Mentality

There is one thing I need to make very clear about warrior tanking because many people don’t seem to realize it: You’re an offensive, mitigation-based tank. You are not a defensive tank like lancers and brawlers. Warrior tanking is about assessing the situation and taking calculated hits, whether directly or with one of your damage reduction skills, when you know you can afford to and when you know that blocking would be wasteful. Warriors only benefit from blocking when Blade Draw is off cooldown, as a successful Cross Parry or Torrent of Blows can chain into it.

In other words, where other tank classes see their HP as merely a buffer between them and the floor, warrior tanks need to think of HP as a resource, just like MP and RE; you can expend some of it to deal more damage, and if you’re running low on it, you’re in trouble. I’ll describe the different ways you can mitigate damage later in the guide.

It’s important to check with your healer when you intend to take a significant amount of hits instead of blocking or dodging. Not all healers are comfortable with having to constantly heal and cleanse you, so asking them first is better than ending up on the floor when you expected a heal or cleanse and didn’t get it.

Racial Differences

While I think you should just pick a race based on personal preference, it’s undeniable that race does have some significance for warriors. There are three races that I would consider worth picking if you care about racial differences:

  • Elin: Has no notable passives, but has very favorable animations. Combative Strike and Rising Fury travel further than for other races, which is very useful as tanks need to be highly mobile on some bosses. It can also allow you to escape certain attacks without having to waste a dodge skill.
  • Aman: Has a passive granting you 10% damage reduction when you’re below 30% HP. Given near-perfect gear, this can actually make you immortal with respect to most boss attacks during an enrage cycle. This is mainly useful if you do slaying runs often, but can also save your life in normal runs on occasion.
  • Castanic: Has a passive granting you 1% extra crit chance when attacking from behind, making this a good pick if you mainly play DD and only want to tank on the side. This can also be useful on some bosses where you’re allowed to attack from behind (Dakuryon, Perimos, Vergos in phase 3 of Harrowhold, etc).

Pick a race based on what you want to optimize for. If you want my personal opinion, I prefer elin. I don’t do slaying runs enough to justify picking aman (which has awful animations, in my opinion). Even when I do such runs, I find that staying alive is not particularly hard. Given that there are very few bosses that allow me to attack from behind, I tend to not really bother, so castanic is out too. I like elin animations in general, and the extra distance on some skills certainly doesn’t hurt.


Gear & Stats

In this section, I’ll go over the various gear pieces and which stats you should roll on them.

Since the revamp, gear doesn’t matter as much as it used to, but it’s still important to reach the crit cap on Scythe as it accounts for over 50% of your total damage. After that, the choice is between attack speed, cooldown reduction, and power. You can pretty much pick whatever you want between those. Past the Scythe crit cap, crit factor loses value because it affects less than half of your total damage.

The crit cap for Scythe when attacking from the front is around 240 total crit factor in dungeons, and around 280 in Harrowhold. This is assuming you use a Fine Carving Niveot (more on that crystal later). All my gearing advice will land you at or above these numbers. If you stray from my advice, just remember that reaching the Scythe crit cap is the most important aspect of gearing a warrior, so you should make sure to get there one way or another.

Note that the 15% crit chance buff from Defensive Stance does not affect Scythe‘s crit chance.

Equipment

There are currently four relevant gear sets for endgame players:

  • Guile: The current mid-tier set that is relatively easy to obtain and enchant. Most players will be using this, either because they don’t intend to craft or buy a Visionmaker set, or because they’re using it as a stepping stone to obtaining a Visionmaker set.
  • Imperator: The previous so-called Visionmaker (best-in-slot) set. While Ambush is around 10% better than this set, it is much easier to craft this set as the materials can be obtained in fairly easy dungeons. This set is only slightly better than Guile at +12, but can be awakened.
  • Ambush: The current Visionmaker set. This is the best gear you can obtain outside of doing Harrowhold, and takes some effort to craft as the materials drop from the hardest dungeons.
  • Behemoth: The best set available in the game. This gear requires crafting Ambush and then converting it to Behemoth with items obtained from Harrowhold. Note that this gear can’t be liberated.

It should be fairly obvious that if you want to optimize your character, you should be going for a full Behemoth set. However, since many players don’t have the opportunity to do Harrowhold on a regular basis and with a raid that’s good enough to clear the whole dungeon, it’s perfectly fine to just go with Ambush. The damage and defense difference between the two sets is quite small.

If you’d rather not farm a full Ambush set, a reasonable thing to do is to get an Ambush weapon and belt, Imperator gloves and boots, and any armor piece (though I recommend at least Imperator armor for the extra rerollable line). This gets you all the damage bonuses from the gear; you only miss out on extra defense.

If you’re not heavily invested in your character (e.g. it’s an alt), you may want to just get a full Guile set.

Weapon

Sneak & Snitch

Pay & Back

Hook & Draw

Hack & Slash

These are the stats you should roll on your weapon:

  • 7.2% cooldown reduction or 9.3% damage to enraged monsters (top line)
  • 7.2% cooldown reduction
  • 8.6% damage to highest aggro target
  • 9.3% damage to enraged monsters
  • 6% damage

If you’re using a Guile weapon, you only get three rerollable bottom lines, so skip 6% damage.

I strongly recommend picking 7.2% cooldown reduction on your top line as you’ll quite simply run out of skills to use without it, as a result of the extra attack speed warriors now get from Traverse Cut as well as the ability to block cancel. Cooldown reduction also makes it easier to synchronize Deadly Gamble with enrage cycles, and significantly reduces the cooldown on Infuriate.

Armor

Devntyss Vest

Darksnake Cuirass

Snaketongue Cuirass

Savagevest

The stats on armor are pretty much set in stone for a warrior tank:

  • 10% Blade Draw cooldown reduction or 10% Blade Draw damage (top line)
  • 8.7% reduced damage from highest aggro target
  • 6% reduced damage
  • 6.9% reduced damage from frontal attacks
  • 10% reduced damage from enraged monsters

If you’re using Guile armor, you only get three rerollable bottom lines, so skip 10% reduced damage from enraged monsters.

As I mentioned when discussing weapon stats, cooldown reduction is incredibly important for warrior tanks. You’ll frequently find yourself with every worthwhile skill on cooldown without it. This makes 10% Blade Draw cooldown reduction a great top line stat, especially since 10% Blade Draw damage suffers from diminishing returns with respect to all other percentage-based damage stats on your gear. On the other hand, if you’re not stacking tons of attack speed, the cooldown reduction won’t do that much for you. Ultimately, both stats are completely viable. I prefer cooldown reduction simply because it makes everything smoother.

A quick note about the 8% max HP stat: At first glance, you may think that this is an acceptable replacement for any of the damage reduction stats. It isn’t. Damage reduction in TERA gets better the more you have of it. You must have a full set of damage reduction stats on your armor as a tank. For this reason, I also can’t stress enough the importance of crafting Visionmaker armor so you can get all four stats. The difference in how much damage you take is night and day.

Even if you’re a warrior DD main and only plan to tank occasionally, I would still recommend taking a full set of damage reduction stats. As a DD, you can always put on Fine Relentless Niveot crystals to get more max HP, but you can’t get more damage reduction when tanking if you roll 8% max HP on your armor.

Gloves

Moxiegrips

Consul Gloves

Hypnotic Gloves

Heartripper

These are the stats that all DD and tank classes use on gloves:

  • 9 crit factor
  • 5 power
  • 2.25% attack speed

Nothing much to discuss here. All other stats on gloves are basically worthless in comparison to these.

Boots

Roustboots

Lordly Leapers

Stargaze Boots

Smiteboots

For boots, you generally want these stats:

  • 6% movement speed
  • 4 endurance
  • 2% MP per 5sec or 24% slow duration reduction

There’s room to experiment here. Stats on boots don’t really matter much; the only stat you definitely should have is 6% movement speed. If you don’t have MP problems, 24% slow duration reduction is a nice stat to pick up instead of 2% MP per 5sec. Another stat that sounds interesting in theory is 35% resistance to boss knockdown and stagger, but I’m not actually sure if this stat even works (hence why I didn’t list it above).

Belt

Guile Belt

Imperator Belt

Ambush Belt

Behemoth Belt

Stats on belts are pretty straightforward:

  • 6 crit factor
  • 3 power

Etchings

You can freely mix etchings as you see fit, though for offensive etchings in particular, I would recommend getting the same etching for weapon and gloves.

Offensive

Weapon Etching: Energetic IV

Glove Etching: Energetic IV

Energetic etchings are amazing for tanks in general, and warrior tanks are no exception. The attack speed provided by these help you get more attacks in between boss attacks. In addition to the obvious DPS boost from this, it tends to lead to more frequent block canceling which means that you can often block boss attacks with the same Cross Parry you just used to cancel the wind-down animation on a skill. These etchings also give a significant amount of cooldown reduction which counteracts the attack speed, and also lets you use Deadly Gamble and Infuriate more often. These are by far the best etchings for warrior tanking.

Weapon Etching: Pumped IV

Glove Etching: Pumped IV

Pumped etchings are a decent alternative if you’re not a fan of more attack speed from Energetic etchings, or if you have high ping and therefore can’t make good use of the cooldown reduction.

Defensive

Armor Etching: Relentless IV

Footwear Etching: Relentless IV

Relentless etchings, somewhat counterintuitively, provide the highest effective defense when taking hits directly. They also help you eat certain attacks that deal fixed damage (e.g. Lachelith‘s triple donut AoE). There are two downsides to these etchings: One is that it is slightly harder for a healer to get you to full HP. The other is that Cross Parry and Torrent of Blows will block slightly less damage compared to Grounded etchings. Neither has been a problem for me personally.

Armor Etching: Grounded IV

Footwear Etching: Grounded IV

Grounded etchings are a good alternative to Relentless etchings if you’d rather have lower max HP and/or you want your Cross Parry and Torrent of Blows to block more damage.

Jewelry

Your jewelry setup will be different depending on whether you’re with a mystic. If you are with a mystic, the setup should be:

Resized Manorborne Earring

Resized Manorborne Earring

Resized Manor Necklace

Resized Estateborne Ring

Resized Estateborne Ring

If you’re not with a mystic, or if you’re doing Harrowhold, you will need more crit factor to reach the Scythe crit cap, so you will need this setup:

Resized Estateborne Earring

Resized Estateborne Earring

Resized Manor Necklace

Resized Manorborne Ring

Resized Manorborne Ring

If you’re not rich, it’s completely reasonable to just stick to one set of jewelry, in which case you’d pick one based on which healer class you most often run with.

If you’re gearing your warrior tank as an alt and you’re not planning to buy resizing kits, you can go with this setup that works in all situations:

Manorborne Earring

Shadowvain Earring

Manor Necklace

Manorborne Ring

Shadowvain Ring

These are the stats you should roll on your jewelry:

  • Rings: 4 crit factor + 4 power
  • Earrings: 4 endurance + 4% max HP or 4% max HP + 2% max HP
  • Necklace: 4 power

Given that getting perfect stats on rings can be a serious pain, it’s okay to go with something like 4 crit factor + 2 power. Just make sure you get 4 crit factor as you need it to hit the Scythe crit cap.

It’s viable to choose full max HP on earrings if you want an easier time eating attacks with fixed damage. The loss of endurance doesn’t make a significant difference. Again, perfect stats on earrings are by no means essential.

Circlet

There are currently two circlets in the game:

Focused Circlet

The basic circlet that drops from the hardest 5-man dungeons.

Focused Diadem

The best circlet available. Must be crafted from materials that drop in endgame dungeons and Harrowhold.

A circlet is a good investment as a tank because the huge max MP they give significantly improves percentage-based MP restoration effects. The random Concentration effect also helps with MP, especially if it procs during Deadly Gamble. The defensive stats certainly don’t hurt, either.

It’s well worth getting a Focused Diadem as it has higher defensive stats and max MP, plus a better version of the Concentration effect.

You should roll 8 crit factor on your circlet.

Brooch

The following brooches are relevant at endgame:

Quickcarve Brooch

The main reason people pick up this brooch is to use it for double brooching, i.e. activating it before entering combat and then switching to a more powerful brooch for the rest of the fight. By itself as a primary brooch, it isn’t that great.

Empowered Brooch

This is a brooch you can get as your primary brooch if you’re not willing to craft a Quatrefoil Brooch or raid for a Marrow Brooch.

Quatrefoil Brooch

This is the best primary brooch you can get outside of doing Harrowhold. It has an extra crit factor stat as a static line. Its active effect is similar to that of the Quickcarve Brooch but trades 20 crit factor for an extra 30 power during the effect, which is well worth it.

Marrow Brooch

This brooch is obtained from Harrowhold and is the best brooch in the game. Its stats are similar to the Quatrefoil Brooch, but it has a 20sec duration on its active effect. This is a significant upgrade for warriors since it lets you get an extra Scythe combo off during Deadly Gamble.

Empowered Brooch, Quatrefoil Brooch, and Marrow Brooch all share cooldown, so if you activate one, you’ll have to wait 3min to use any of them. This is why only Quickcarve Brooch is usable for double brooching.

As with belts, stats on a brooch are pretty straightforward:

  • 6 crit factor
  • 3 power

For the Quickcarve Brooch specifically, you can’t roll power, so you would roll:

  • 6 crit factor
  • 4 crit factor

Note, however, that you don’t need to reroll your Quickcarve Brooch at all if you’re only using it for double brooching.

Innerwear

There are two innerwears that are relevant for warrior tanks:

Empowered Black Innerwear

Fortified Black Innerwear

The first one gives 10 power while the second one gives 20 crit factor. In general, you should be using Empowered Black Innerwear. However, if you often run without a mystic or do Harrowhold, and you would like to use Swift Vyrsk jewelry crystals, you’ll have to invest in Fortified Black Innerwear for those situations.

If you’re not rich, you can get the cheaper versions of these which have slightly lower stats.


Crystal Setups

Crystals are even more important than gear stats when it comes to optimizing your DPS and survivability. You simply cannot hold aggro if you’re using a wrong set of weapon crystals, and wrong armor crystals can easily turn you into one-shot paper. Even if you don’t want to spend gold on getting best-in-slot gear, you must get a correct set of crystals.

Weapon

Fine Focused Niveot

Fine Wrathful Niveot

Fine Carving Niveot

Fine Pounding Niveot

The general warrior tank setup is Fine Focused Niveot, Fine Wrathful Niveot, Fine Carving Niveot, and Fine Pounding Niveot. The reason that Fine Carving Niveot is taken instead of an extra Fine Pounding Niveot is that it has a weird interaction with Scythe where it will add around 15% crit chance to the skill when it’s used at 10 edge.

Fine Slaying Niveot

Fine Threatening Niveot

For slaying runs, you would replace the Fine Pounding Niveot with a Fine Slaying Niveot.

If you’re very undergeared compared to your party’s damage dealers, swapping the Fine Pounding Niveot with a Fine Threatening Niveot is not a bad idea. Having a tank that holds aggro reliably is a much bigger party DPS increase than the tank using a Fine Pounding Niveot.

You will need somewhat specialized crystal setups if you’re going to run Harrowhold. In phases 1 and 4, you should use the usual tank setup. In phase 2, however, Vergos never enrages. You will be attacking his head, which of course counts as hitting from the front. So, in this phase you swap the Fine Focused Niveot for an extra Fine Pounding Niveot.

Fine Bitter Niveot

Fine Savage Niveot

Similarly, in phase 3, Vergos never enrages. The whole raid will be attacking his paws, which counts as hitting from behind. In this phase, you swap the Fine Focused Niveot for a Fine Bitter Niveot and the Fine Wrathful Niveot for a Fine Savage Niveot.

Armor

Fine Hardy Niveot

Fine Poised Niveot

In almost all contexts, you should be using four Fine Hardy Niveot crystals. The exception is phase 4 of Harrowhold, where Vergos is always enraged. Here, it’s worth swapping one Fine Hardy Niveot for a Fine Poised Niveot.

Jewelry

Swift Vyrsk

Powerful Vyrsk

Keen Vyrsk

If you’re running without a mystic or you’re doing Harrowhold, and you didn’t invest in crit factor innerwear, you will need to use four Keen Vyrsk crystals to get to the Scythe crit cap. This is not necessary if you use the basic, non-resized jewelry setup.

If you’re already at the Scythe crit cap, you can pick freely between Swift Vyrsk and Powerful Vyrsk. I personally like a full set of Swift Vyrsk crystals since they provide a nice quality of life boost and are only slightly worse than Powerful Vyrsk crystals in terms of DPS.

Dyad Prefixes

Weapon dyad prefixes ordered from best to worst:

  1. Poisedly: This is hands down the best prefix available. If your armor has correct stats and you have a full set of dyads with this prefix, you’ll be nearly unkillable (or actually unkillable if you’re aman) while a boss is enraged.
  2. Relentlessly: A full set of dyads with this prefix is about the same as having an extra Fine Relentless Niveot. Useful in e.g. Ruinous Manor.
  3. Resolutely: If you do slaying runs often, a full set of dyads with this prefix can work wonders for your survivability. Outside of that, it’s not terribly useful.
  4. Protectively: This prefix is too situational to be of much use in PvE.
  5. Vigorously: Too low amount of HP restored to be of any use.
  6. Grievingly: This is useless in PvE.

The ideal weapon setup for maximum effective defense would be four Poisedly dyads.

Armor dyad prefixes ordered from best to worst:

  1. Brutally: A full set of these can provide a noticeable boost to your damage while a boss is knocked down. Mainly relevant on Resurrected Malgarios.
  2. Cunningly: A bigger MP pool means that percentage-based MP restoration effects become more effective.
  3. Brilliantly: This is another good prefix for dealing with MP issues.
  4. Glisteningly: Certain bosses will turn their back to you every now and then, so one or two dyads with this prefix can help keep your MP up. You can also use a dyad with this prefix to know if you’re hitting the back of a target.
  5. Swiftly: These can be useful if you have to run to escape large mechanics (e.g. in Harrowhold).
  6. Infusedly: You shouldn’t be getting knocked down in PvE, making this useless.
  7. Salivatingly: This is useless in PvE.

The ideal armor setup for maximum damage would be four Brutally dyads. For the best quality of life, four Cunningly dyads would be the way to go.


Consumables

Since there are a lot of consumables in this game, even after the patch that simplified and unified many of them, it can be hard to figure out which ones are actually worth carrying with you. I’ll go over the ones I believe are useful for warrior tanks here.

Essential

You should always carry these consumables. They are the bare minimum for any tank or DD class.

Prime Battle Solution

Provides a number of essential buffs for combat (power, endurance, cooldown reduction, etc). Can also be used through the Everful Nostrum available via Elite (NA) or TERA Club (EU). You should always have this up.

Prime Recovery Potable

A small dose of healing on a short cooldown. These are cheap, so spam them liberally if your healer is busy.

Prime Replenishment Potable

A small amount of MP on a short cooldown. These are cheap, so spam them liberally if you have MP problems.

Scroll of Rapid Resurrection

Always carry these in case you need to resurrect your healer.

Useful

The following consumables are worth having if you can afford them, but are not required.

Noctenium Infusion

These provide a fairly significant boost to your overall damage. Pretty much every dungeon drops them these days so don’t be afraid of using them, especially if you’re tanking against people with better gear than you.

Bravery Potion

Strong Bravery Potion

These potions provide a cheap and quite significant boost to your damage, attack speed, and defense. If you’re having aggro problems or you’re taking too much damage from boss attacks, pop one of these.

Canephora Potion

Strong Canephora Potion

These potions provide a cheap and significant boost to your damage. Bravery Potion is preferable to these, but if you have that on cooldown, you can pop one of these instead.

Rejuvenation Potion

Provides much more healing than Prime Recovery Potable but applies it over time and has a longer cooldown.

Divine Infusion

Provides much more MP than Prime Replenishment Potable but applies it over time and has a longer cooldown.

Health Potion

Valkyon Health Potion

These restore 50% of your HP roughly 1sec after use. They’re particularly good if you get a bleed debuff and need to keep yourself alive until your healer can help you.

Goddess’s Blessing

These allow you to resurrect immediately if you die. Don’t waste them; only pop one if there’s no way your healer can get you up or if you’re near-wipe and you’re confident that you can prevent it.

Optional

These are consumables that are primarily useful if you’re doing a parse run, i.e. pushing for as high DPS as possible.

Uncommon Noctenium Elixir

Rare Noctenium Elixir

Superior Noctenium Elixir

Significantly stronger versions of Noctenium Infusion. The latter two only exist in EU.

Combat Accelerator Potion

This provides a huge amount of cooldown reduction and gives essentially infinite MP for its duration. Synergizes extremely well with the amount of attack speed that tanks typically stack. Only available in EU.

Lamb Bulgogi

A small boost to your crit factor, attack speed, and max HP.

Freeholds Flame Salad

A small boost to your max HP and max MP. Useful if you want to try to eat certain attacks that deal fixed damage, such as Lachelith‘s triple donut AoE.

Lein’s Dark Root Beer

This provides a pretty huge attack speed boost for 10sec (and makes your screen wobbly for the duration). This is best used together with Deadly Gamble.


Skills & Glyphs

Here, I’ll list every skill and glyph at your disposal. I’ll explain all noteworthy aspects of every skill and when you should be using it. I won’t list stats (such as base damage, cooldown, cast time, etc) for skills since keeping this data current is somewhat tedious, and the developers have been known to lie about things like base damage. I recommend you follow along in the skill window in-game.

I will use color coding to indicate the usefulness of a glyph:

  • Essential: Core glyph that all warrior tanks must use.
  • Good: Glyph that’s worth picking up after all essential glyphs.
  • Situational: A glyph that can be useful in very specific scenarios.
  • Worthless: You should never use this glyph for tanking.

Combo Attack

Your most basic attack, also known as ‘auto attack’ (though that’s quite a misnomer in TERA). Deals a tiny bit of damage and gives you MP back on each hit. The only valid use for this skill is when you’re having MP problems and you don’t want to spend MP potions. Throw in a hit or two between your combos to keep MP up in that case.

  • Glyph of Threat: You should not be using this skill for damage or aggro at all.
  • Glyph of Sap: This has no use whatsoever in PvE.
  • Glyph of Spirit: This skill gives plenty of MP already, if you really have to use it.

Evasive Roll

This is your primary dodge skill. For the duration of the animation, and a very short time after (depending on race), you’ll be immune to most attacks. It can also cancel the animation of almost any warrior skill, though some skills have a few frames at the beginning where they can’t be canceled.

  • Glyph of Mending: There are better glyphs for HP management.
  • Glyph of the Swift: Your main attack speed buff. You will be dodging a lot on most bosses, so this glyph will have high uptime.
  • Glyph of Unending: You don’t really need this glyph for the purpose of being able to dodge more often, but it does let you use this skill to reposition more liberally, making it a nice pick.

Chains to:

Scythe

Makes available:

Vortex Slash (for 5sec)

Torrent of Blows

This is your secondary block skill and a decent filler. It used to feature a mechanic where it dropped the aggro of other party members, but it’s uncertain whether this feature still exists since it appears to have next to no effect.

You automatically block attacks while using this skill, similar to lancer’s Wallop. Just like with Cross Parry, successful blocks can be chained into Blade Draw.

You’re immune to knockdowns and staggers for the duration of the skill’s animation, and damage taken is reduced by 50%. This damage reduction is applied before the block effect, meaning that this skill can block a lot more damage than Cross Parry.

  • Glyph of Influence: This is a tiny amount of MP. Not worth the point cost.
  • Glyph of Binding: This has no use whatsoever in PvE.
  • Glyph of Threat: This skill doesn’t generate a lot of aggro through its damage, and this glyph doesn’t affect the aggro drop mechanic.

Chains to:

Blade Draw (on block)

Rain of Blows

This is one of your core damage skills. It stacks 1 edge (2 during Deadly Gamble). You should always use it as part of a chain as it’ll execute faster.

You’re immune to knockdowns and staggers for the duration of the skill’s animation, and damage taken is reduced by 30%.

  • Glyph of Power: Mandatory damage boost for a core skill.
  • Glyph of Restoration: Good for counteracting the HP drain of Combative Strike when soloing. It heals double during Deadly Gamble.

Chains from:

Combative Strike

Cascade of Stuns

Pounce

Chains to:

Reaping Slash

Scythe

Battle Cry

This is your most important aggro skill. It guarantees aggro for 5sec after casting, giving you a fair amount of time to generate lots of aggro from a Scythe combo, after which you should be able to maintain aggro through your normal damage combos. In Harrowhold phases 2 through 4, this skill guarantees aggro until another tank uses a shout skill.

This skill is also an AoE stun. Note that even if you’re in Assault Stance, the skill will still rip aggro from whoever has it, so don’t use it for the stun portion unless you’re actually tanking.

  • Glyph of Energy: You may consider taking this if you’re undergeared.
  • Glyph of Haste: You shouldn’t be needing this skill often enough to justify this glyph.
  • Glyph of Luck: No need for this in PvE.
  • Glyph of Threat: This skill guarantees aggro for 5sec, but outside of that, its aggro generation is pathetic, making this glyph useless.

Assault Stance

One of your stances. Only one stance can be active at a time. Grants 18 power, 55 crit factor, and 10% damage to monsters, while reducing endurance by 10%.

Since this stance is directly incompatible with Defensive Stance, it has little use for a warrior tank. The only place one might consider using it is in phase 4 of Harrowhold, as you don’t necessarily need the ability to block there.

Makes available:

Staggering Counter

Defensive Stance

One of your stances. Only one stance can be active at a time. Grants 25% endurance and 30 balance factor. Multiplies your crit chance by 1.15. Increases aggro on all skills by 120%. Enables Torrent of Blows to chain into Blade Draw on a successful block.

This is the tank stance. You should always have this on.

  • Glyph of Grounding: This glyph actually gives 10 flat endurance. You can put it on outside of a dungeon and activate Defensive Stance, then go in and switch to a glyph page without it, and you’ll still have the effect.

Makes available:

Cross Parry

Infuriate

Death From Above

This is your second dodge skill. It deals damage and stacks 1 edge. For the duration of the animation, you’ll be immune to most attacks. It can also cancel the animation of almost any warrior skill, though some skills have a few frames at the beginning where they can’t be canceled.

Note that this skill has a somewhat nasty animation lock near the end where you aren’t immune, so be careful when you use it.

  • Glyph of the Swift: This is your other attack speed buff. This one won’t proc as often as the one on Evasive Roll, but it’s still worth picking up.
  • Glyph of Energy: This can be worth picking up if you find yourself dodging often. You shouldn’t really need it, however.
  • Glyph of Grounding: 25 endurance is actually huge. This glyph can be worth picking up if your armor is outdated or has incorrect stats.

Makes available:

Vortex Slash (for 5sec)

Poison Blade

This skill stacks 2 edge. It deals a very tiny amount of damage that is basically insignificant; it’s used for its edge stacking only.

This skill has surprisingly high range, so you can use it as a sort of gap closer if you chain into Scythe.

  • Glyph of Virulence: I honestly can’t believe this glyph exists in this form. 6 points for virtually no damage. It has no use, even outside PvE.
  • Glyph of Cumulation: Not useful in PvE.

Chains to:

Scythe

Traverse Cut

Leaping Strike

This is a mobility skill. Its strength lies in how fast it is compared to Charging Slash; in turn, it has an animation lock when you land, so make sure you aim it well. The damage on this skill is insignificant so don’t bother using it for that.

  • Glyph of Power: Completely useless in all contexts.

Chains to:

Scythe

Retaliate

Recovers from a knockdown. Grants you brief immunity to knockdowns, staggers, and stuns.

  • Glyph of Energy: You should not be getting knocked down that often in PvE.
  • Glyph of Power: Not useful in PvE.
  • Glyph of Influence: Completely useless in all contexts.

Charging Slash

In addition to being a gap closer, this is also one of your core skills. It deals a bit of damage and stacks 1 edge. The fact that it chains into Blade Draw makes it one of the most important skills a warrior has. You should never use it as a filler skill.

Contrary to what the tooltip would have you believe, this skill doesn’t generate high aggro at all.

  • Glyph of Energy: Mandatory as this is one of your best combo starters.
  • Glyph of Influence: Completely useless in all contexts.
  • Glyph of Powerlink (Combative Strike): This is a significant boost to a core damage skill.

Chains to:

Blade Draw

Vortex Slash

A combo starter that deals decent damage and is only available after a dodge. Generally speaking, don’t use it if you can’t immediately follow up with Blade Draw.

  • Glyph of Persistence: Low chance and requires two rapid activations of this skill to be useful.
  • Glyph of Power: This is decent on bosses that force you to dodge often.

Made available by:

Evasive Roll (for 5sec)

Death From Above (for 5sec)

Chains to:

Blade Draw

Combative Strike

A combo starter and one of your main damage skills. Stacks 1 edge. This skill drains your HP instead of MP or RE. It has some forward momentum, especially as elin, so it can be used to escape mechanics or as a gap closer that you can then chain into other skills.

This skill applies an 8% endurance debuff to your target. It’s your job to try to maintain 100% uptime on it.

  • Glyph of Powerlink (Rising Fury): Essentially a permanent damage boost to Rising Fury since you’ll use this skill all the time.
  • Glyph of Lingering: This can be useful on mechanics where you can’t keep the debuff up, e.g. shield phase on Imperator.
  • Glyph of the Sanative: Useful if you’re doing a slaying run or playing solo.
  • Glyph of Powerlink (Leaping Strike): Not really sure why this exists.

Chains to:

Rain of Blows

Reaping Slash

Traverse Cut

Rising Fury

A two-part skill that must be pressed twice for all three slashes. Deals decent damage and stacks 1 edge on the third slash. It has a lot of forward momentum, especially on elin, so it can be used to escape mechanics or as a gap closer that you can then immediately chain into Blade Draw.

This skill deals more damage for every 10% of max HP you’re missing, making it really good for slaying runs. If you’re below 10% HP, its base damage is doubled.

  • Glyph of Persistence: Too low chance for such a high cost, even when slaying.
  • Glyph of Numbing: Not useful in PvE.

Chains to:

Blade Draw

Deadly Gamble

The self-buff skill of warriors. Multiplies your crit chance by 1.5, grants 50% cooldown reduction to all melee skills, doubles edge generation on Rain of Blows and Blade Draw, and adds 10% extra damage to Rain of Blows, Blade Draw, and Scythe. Lasts for 20 seconds (24 if glyphed).

You will want to use this when executing a burn, i.e. when you cast Infuriate and use your brooch(es). After that, just use it on every enrage cycle you can throughout the fight. Make sure that you have Blade Draw and Scythe off cooldown before you use this skill.

  • Glyph of Energy: Shaves 30 seconds off the cooldown. You really only want to skip this glyph in parse runs where you know it won’t make a difference in regards to how many times you can use this skill.
  • Glyph of Lingering: Adds 4 seconds to the buff duration.

Cascade of Stuns

Functions as a stun extender. Use it on a stunned target to extend the stun and also spread it to nearby enemies. It also deals pretty decent damage and can be used as a combo starter, making it a good filler. You will want to block cancel this skill’s animation when not using it in a chain.

  • Glyph of Brilliance: Completely useless in all contexts.
  • Glyph of Influence: This is a tiny amount of MP. Not worth the point cost.
  • Glyph of Energy: This can be useful when every second of additional stun matters.
  • Glyph of Power: This glyph isn’t outright terrible in and of itself, but you simply cannot pick it up unless you drop other, better glyphs.
  • Glyph of Lingering: This can be useful when every second of additional stun matters.
  • Glyph of Powerlink (Rain of Blows): This is a decent glyph to pick up if you have spare points.

Chains to:

Rain of Blows

Backstab

This skill does a bunch of things at once. It teleports you to the back of your target, stacks 1 edge, deals a bit of damage, and grants you immunity to most attacks for the duration of the animation and a short time after (i.e. it’s a dodge skill of sorts).

The main use this skill has as a tank is when you’re starting a fight. Using this skill will instantly turn the boss away from your damage dealers as they enter the room, which makes things easier for them. Using it for the stun or as a gap closer of sorts when the boss has its back to you is also okay. There are some specific bosses that allow you to use this skill as a filler without turning them (e.g. Balbatos and Darkan).

  • Glyph of Advantage: Not useful for a tank.
  • Glyph of Lingering: This can be useful when every second of additional stun matters.
  • Glyph of Energy: This can be useful when every second of additional stun matters.

Staggering Counter

This skill stuns your target and turns their back to you. It’s only usable for 5sec after being hit, and requires Assault Stance.

Tanks will never use this.

  • Glyph of Power: Not useful for a tank.
  • Glyph of Lingering: Not useful for a tank.
  • Glyph of Energy: Not useful for a tank.
  • Glyph of Powerlink (Cascade of Stuns): Not useful for a tank.

Made available by:

Assault Stance

Smoke Aggressor

Summons a decoy that takes over your aggro for 20sec or until it dies. Costs 20% of your HP. While the aggressor is alive and within 20m, you will only take half damage from attacks; the other half will be applied to the aggressor. This effect stacks multiplicatively with damage reduction from other skills.

This skill can be used when you know a very hard-hitting attack is coming and you’re not confident you would be able to survive it (e.g. Lachelith‘s third slash while you have debuff and low HP, or the third hit of Vergos‘s triple smash).

  • Glyph of Energy: This could potentially be useful if you don’t trust your healer. I wouldn’t pick it up in general, though.

Command: Attack

Orders your Smoke Aggressor to attack the target you’re aiming at.

Command: Follow

Orders your Smoke Aggressor to follow you.

Pounce

A combo starter with decent damage, though its cast time is abysmal. It has some forward momentum, so it can be used to escape mechanics or as a gap closer that you can then chain into other skills.

Overall, this skill is pretty mediocre compared to Combative Strike. You should generally avoid using it unless you completely run out of other skills to use.

Damage taken is reduced by 50% for the duration of the skill’s animation.

  • Glyph of Energy: You won’t need this skill often enough to justify the point cost.
  • Glyph of Haste: This glyph makes it harder to utilize the damage reduction part of the skill.

Chains to:

Rain of Blows

Traverse Cut

Traverse Cut

Performs 3 (13 if chained) quick hits, dealing tiny damage. Executes faster if chained; you should never use this skill unchained.

This skill’s main purpose is the attack speed buff it applies. It gives you 0.9% attack speed per stack (i.e. 11.7% when fully stacked). As with the Combative Strike debuff, you should aim to have 100% uptime on this.

If the buff is already at 13 stacks, one hit of this skill is enough to refresh its duration, so you should cancel into Blade Draw immediately in this case.

  • Glyph of Lingering: You can take this glyph if you sometimes have trouble keeping the buff up. Particularly useful on bosses with lots of mechanics.
  • Glyph of Brilliance: Completely useless in all contexts.

Chains from:

Poison Blade

Combative Strike

Pounce

Chains to:

Blade Draw

Blade Draw

This is a core damage skill that deals high damage. Stacks 1 edge (2 if glyphed, and double that during Deadly Gamble). Everything you do revolves around this skill and its Glyph of Persistence.

  • Glyph of Power: More damage on a core damage skill.
  • Glyph of Brilliance: Pretty much the only useful MP reduction glyph that warrior has. You can take this if you have MP problems and don’t want to use potions.
  • Glyph of Persistence: Your combo priorities revolve around resets from this glyph.
  • Glyph of Advantage: Better edge stacking on a core damage skill is always nice.
  • Glyph of Carving: Gives the skill a second ‘roll’ to crit, i.e. it’s a binomial double crit chance glyph.

Chains from:

Torrent of Blows (on block)

Charging Slash

Vortex Slash

Rising Fury

Traverse Cut

Cross Parry (on block)

Chains to:

Scythe

Scythe

This is the single most important damage skill that warriors have, and also the hardest-hitting one. Once you’ve stacked 10 edge, you use this skill for a massive burst of damage.

It’s important to keep in mind that this skill’s damage and crit chance scale with the amount of edge you’ve stacked, so using it too early can result in a significant DPS loss, especially if it doesn’t crit. At the same time, edge has a hard cap of 10, so ‘stacking’ more is wasted. Sometimes, you may end up wasting 1 edge due to how your Blade Draw resets play out, or having to block cancel skills early. That’s fine – it’s still better to waste 1 edge and use this skill at 10 edge than using it at 9 edge.

  • Glyph of Carving: This appears to be a true triple crit chance glyph, meaning that if you have, say, 30% base chance to crit, it becomes 90%.
  • Glyph of Power: More damage for the hardest-hitting warrior skill.

Chains from:

Evasive Roll

Rain of Blows

Poison Blade

Leaping Strike

Blade Draw

Reaping Slash

A stun skill with abysmal damage. Stacks 1 edge. The main use of this skill as a warrior tank is to reach 10 edge if can see that you’d otherwise end up at 9.

  • Glyph of Power: The damage on this skill is pathetic.

Chains from:

Rain of Blows

Combative Strike

Cross Parry

This is your main block skill. It is only available in Defensive Stance. You will be using this to mitigate most boss attacks, both for yourself and any nearby party members. The majority of attacks only require a quick tap of this skill. You should avoid holding it down unless you have to, as it drains RE quite fast, and doing so is a significant DPS loss.

This skill can be used to cancel the wind-down animation on most warrior skills. This is called block canceling and is a very important technique to master to maximize your DPS as a warrior tank.

On a successful block, you can immediately chain into Blade Draw. This is an extremely powerful chain that can be totally abused on bosses that attack frequently (e.g. Darkan and Lachelith). Successful blocks also restore MP, but you shouldn’t actively block attacks just for that; it’s just a nice quality of life boost.

  • Glyph of the Pump: This is only around 2% extra damage when it procs. Only worth taking on bosses that attack very frequently.

Made available by:

Defensive Stance

Chains to:

Blade Draw (on block)

Smoke Flanker (on block)

Smoke Flanker

Summons a near-invincible decoy for 15sec which holds perfect aggro (assuming you had aggro when you summoned it). Also stuns your target. This skill is only available in Defensive Stance, and can only be activated shortly after a successful Cross Parry (not Torrent of Blows). You must still be holding down your Cross Parry button as you press this skill.

This can be thought of as a more reliable version of Smoke Aggressor for when you need to resurrect your healer, with the caveat that you must do a successful Cross Parry to use it.

Because this skill has a tendency to turn bosses around, using it during fights to allow you to attack from behind is not generally a good idea.

  • Glyph of Threat: The decoy holds perfect aggro without this. Not sure why this glyph exists.

Made available by:

Defensive Stance

Cross Parry (on block, for 5sec)

Binding Sword

A leash skill that can pull up to 4 enemies to you, as long as they’re within 21m. This is mainly useful for gathering mobs together so they’re easier for your party to kill.

You can also use this skill to get in some extra damage if a mechanic forces you to be away from the boss, e.g. floor explosions on Dakuryon.

  • Glyph of Power: You will rarely use this skill, so this is a waste of points.
  • Glyph of Energy: You will rarely use this skill, so this is a waste of points.

Infuriate

This is your only ‘party buff’ of sorts as a warrior tank. It enrages any enemies within 10m, such that all gear that affects enraged monsters will be activated (e.g. Fine Focused Niveot). Additionally, it grants you slightly higher aggro than the person who currently has highest aggro, so it can be used to regain aggro. I would not recommend using it for this purpose, however; Battle Cry is better for that. This skill is only available in Defensive Stance.

Note that you can’t switch stance at all for 3min after you use this skill. This means that if you log out and back in within those 3min (thus losing your stance), you have to wait before you can switch any stance back on. Solid game design!

  • Glyph of Slowing: Completely useless in all contexts.
  • Glyph of Energy: This is actually a great glyph for long fights, or for powering through relatively easy dungeons. The point cost can make it hard to squeeze in, though.

Made available by:

Defensive Stance

Makes unavailable:

Assault Stance (for 3min)

Defensive Stance (for 3min)

Glyph Builds

Ideally, you should use the glyph ratings above to put together a glyph build that works for you. If you’d rather use my glyph builds, however, I’ve provided them here:

Guild Skills

Generally speaking, you should get every guild skill that raises your stats in some way. However, given that some guilds are small, and some people even have solo guilds, they can’t get all skills that easily. So I’ll list the skills here in decreasing order of importance for a warrior tank:

  1. Zuras’s Anger (crit factor)
  2. Kaia’s Power (power)
  3. Elinu’s Vigor (max HP)
  4. Bahaar’s Shield (endurance)
  5. Zenobia’s Protection (crit resist factor)
  6. Amarun’s Energy (max MP)
  7. Karas’s Touch (movement speed)

Zuras’s Anger is highest on the list because it’s needed to reach the crit cap on Scythe if you follow my gearing advice. You might choose to pick up Amarun’s Energy earlier than some of the defensive skills since a bigger MP pool means percentage-based MP restoration effects will be more effective.


Combat & Tanking

Now for the actual meat of playing warrior tank: Dealing damage, managing aggro, and mitigating incoming attacks.

All information in this section is based on the assumption that you’re using block canceling to end skill animations earlier than a warrior DD would be able to. I’ll cover block canceling with Cross Parry later in this section.

Unlike other warrior guides, I will not omit damage skills from this section just because they are mediocre (or even bad, as is the case for some). Warrior tanks will tend towards high amounts of attack speed, which means that they must necessarily use more fillers than warrior DDs. Also, some skills that are considered useless in conventional warrior DD wisdom are actually useful as a warrior tank.

Chain System

Warriors are similar to slayers and reapers in that you cannot just press individual skills in order of priority and expect to do decent damage. The majority of skills will be used as part of a combo of 2-3 skills, which makes them execute significantly faster. This makes playing warrior a bit more complicated than, say, archer. After every skill, an archer just has to pick the skill with the highest damage that’s off cooldown and use that. On the other hand, a warrior has to determine if all the skills in a combo are off cooldown or will come off cooldown in time for the full combo to be finished. It’s therefore important to internalize the cooldowns of your skills given your particular build; constantly looking at 20+ skill icons during combat is not an effective way to play.

I strongly advise you not to use the game’s chain button to execute your combos. Not only is this slower than just using skills manually, it will also sometimes result in chains not connecting as you’d expect.

With that out of the way, let’s have a look at the warrior chain system:

In practice, you won’t have to remember all of the chains above. In particular:

  • Combative StrikeReaping Slash is never used as you’ll be using Reaping Slash after Rain of Blows if at all.
  • Evasive Roll/Death From AboveVortex Slash are not real chains. Rather, using one of the former skills makes the latter available for 5sec. You can use other skills before using Vortex Slash.
  • Leaping StrikeScythe is extremely situational. You will basically never need it.
  • Cross ParrySmoke Flanker is almost never used. Its main use is holding aggro while you resurrect your healer if everyone else is dead.

All other chains should be internalized as you’ll be using them often. Also, remember that any skill that has an arrow going to it should generally not be used outside of a combo.

Skill Priorities

It’s not a good idea to play warrior tank with a fixed rotation. You need to block, you need to dodge, and you need to do mechanics. Recovering back into a fixed rotation every 2-5sec because a boss attack or mechanic interrupted you is nearly impossible to do correctly, and you’re more likely to lose DPS if you try to play this way. It’s my opinion that warrior tank is better played with a priority system, i.e. you use the best skill or combo available to you at any given time while factoring in things such as cooldown for later skills in the combo, edge overflow, and Scythe chain opportunities.

This section will set up your priority system as a warrior tank. The skill and combo rankings here were established by doing DPS calculations on base damage, cast time, edge value, crit glyphs, Noctenium Infusion effects, and other relevant factors. Simply go down the list and pick the first skill or combo that’s off cooldown.

Blade Draw Combos

Blade Draw is the strongest edge-building skill that warriors have. Its base damage is second only to Scythe, it generates 2 edge, and it has double crit chance and cooldown reset glyphs. As such, this skill takes priority over all filler skills and combos. You basically want to keep it on cooldown as much as you can.

The Blade Draw combos available to you are, from best to worst:

Cross Parry Blade Draw

Stacks 2 edge. Assuming you only tap Cross Parry as opposed to holding it down, this is the single fastest way to use Blade Draw. This combo can also proc Glyph of the Pump.

Charging Slash Blade Draw

Stacks 3 edge. This is the fastest Blade Draw combo that isn’t situational. Try to save your Charging Slash for this combo.

Vortex Slash Blade Draw

Stacks 2 edge. This combo is only available if you recently dodged an attack.

Torrent of Blows Blade Draw

Stacks 2 edge. This is similar to Cross ParryBlade Draw, but isn’t quite as good. You will only use this combo if you actually need the damage reduction from Torrent of Blows or if you’re blocking a long attack where holding Cross Parry would be wasteful.

Combative Strike Traverse Cut Blade Draw

Stacks 3 edge. If Traverse Cut is fully stacked, you should cancel into Blade Draw immediately.

Poison Blade Traverse Cut Blade Draw

Stacks 4 edge. If Traverse Cut is fully stacked, you should cancel into Blade Draw immediately. I would generally avoid this combo as it makes it more likely that you’ll reach 10 edge while Scythe is still on cooldown, and you can end up with no good fillers when Blade Draw stops resetting.

Rising Fury Blade Draw

Stacks 3 edge. You can initiate this combo while being some distance from the boss, and still land the last hit of Rising Fury as well as both hits of Blade Draw.

Pounce Traverse Cut Blade Draw

Stacks 2 edge. This combo is pretty terrible and should only be used if you actually need the damage reduction from Pounce at the start; even an unchained Blade Draw has higher DPS than this combo.

The value of the Rising FuryBlade Draw combo changes depending on two factors: Whether you’re slaying and whether you’re using the Rising Fury cancel technique (discussed later). If you’re doing one or the other, this combo sits a bit under Vortex SlashBlade Draw. If you’re doing both, it sits under Charging SlashBlade Draw, making it one of the best combos.

Sometimes you may find yourself getting a lot of Blade Draw resets, to the point where you actually run out of combos to use because they’re all on cooldown. This most often happens when you’ve exhausted all other combos and use Rising FuryBlade Draw, and then get a reset. In this case, it’s actually okay for a warrior tank to use an unchained Blade Draw as long as you cancel the animation with Cross Parry or chain into Scythe.

Filler Skills

When Blade Draw inevitably goes on cooldown, you will need to fill time with other skills.

The filler skills and combos available to you are, from best to worst:

Poison Blade

Stacks 2 edge. By far the best filler because of how fast it is, how much edge it stacks, and the fact that it can chain into Scythe immediately.

Combative Strike Rain of Blows Reaping Slash

Stacks 2-3 edge. The Reaping Slash at the end of the combo is only used if you can tell that you would end up at 9 edge without it.

Combative Strike

Stacks 1 edge.

Cascade of Stuns Rain of Blows Reaping Slash

Stacks 1-2 edge. The Reaping Slash at the end of the combo is only used if you can tell that you would end up at 9 edge without it.

Pounce Rain of Blows Reaping Slash

Stacks 1-2 edge. The Reaping Slash at the end of the combo is only used if you can tell that you would end up at 9 edge without it.

Cascade of Stuns

Stacks no edge. This skill must be block canceled to have good DPS.

Rising Fury

Stacks 1 edge. You can use this skill to reposition while still hitting the boss.

Torrent of Blows

Stacks no edge. This is a good filler to use if you’d otherwise have to block an incoming attack.

Reaping Slash

Stacks 1 edge. This skill must be block canceled to have good DPS.

Vortex Slash

Stacks no edge. This skill must be block canceled to have good DPS. Try to avoid using this skill as filler if Blade Draw will become available before the activation runs out. This skill is only available if you recently dodged an attack.

Pounce

Stacks no edge. This skill must be block canceled to have good DPS. Hands down the worst filler by itself. You should only use this if you need the damage reduction or if you actually have nothing else available.

Again, the value of Rising Fury changes depending on whether you’re slaying and/or using the Rising Fury cancel technique. If you’re doing one or the other, this skill sits a bit under Cascade of StunsRain of BlowsReaping Slash. If you’re doing both, it sits under Combative Strike.

Edge & Scythe

While your priority system as a warrior revolves around Blade Draw, the single most powerful skill in your arsenal is Scythe, and everything you do has the end goal of stacking 10 edge to use Scythe at full power. The value of this skill cannot be understated; it accounts for more than 50% of your total damage. If you don’t use Scythe quickly and efficiently (at 10 edge only), you might struggle to hold aggro.

The reason why a warrior tank should always use Scythe at 10 edge, as opposed to 9-10 edge depending on the situation, is that its crit chance scales with the amount of edge. Landing a non-crit Scythe is almost as bad as not using it at all as far as aggro goes. Its damage also scales with the amount of edge.

Conversely, you should avoid stacking too much edge when possible. Any edge ‘stacked’ past 10 is wasted as it doesn’t increase Scythe‘s damage or crit chance. For example, if you’re at 8 edge and you have Charging SlashBlade Draw and Poison Blade available, you might think that you should use the former because it has higher priority. This is not the case as that would waste 1 edge, which means that this combo would actually have less DPS than it otherwise would. Instead, use Poison Blade. In other words, follow the priority system I detailed earlier, but start taking edge overflow into consideration once you reach 6 or more edge.

Using edge and Scythe efficiently is what defines a good warrior, whether they’re a DD or tank.

The following skills chain into Scythe:

Blade Draw Scythe

Due to Blade Draw‘s Glyph of Persistence, this will be a very accessible chain.

Poison Blade Scythe

This is the fastest Scythe chain. It also happens to quickly stack 2 edge, making it a great combo to use if you’re at 8 edge.

Rain of Blows Scythe

This is another very accessible chain due to the low cooldown on Rain of Blows. Remember to go through a proper Rain of Blows combo to use this chain.

Evasive Roll Scythe

This chain is useful if you need to reposition to the front of the boss before using Scythe. You can also use it to try to force a Glyph of the Swift proc at 10 edge if you’re going to use Deadly Gamble soon after. Finally, it is of course useful if you simply need to dodge an attack and you’re at 10 edge, in which case you can chain right into Scythe after dodging.

Leaping Strike Scythe

This chain is very situational. It’s only useful when some mechanic forces you to get away from the boss before you can get a Scythe off, and if the distance between you and the boss is too long for Evasive RollScythe to cover.

It’s okay to use Scythe unchained when necessary. For example, if something forced you to block when you were about to land your Scythe and no short Scythe combos are immediately available, it’s okay to use it directly. It’s extra important to cancel the animation with Cross Parry in this case.

Attack Speed Glyphs

Throughout a fight, as you dodge various boss attacks, the attack speed glyph(s) on your dodge skills will proc:

Evasive Roll

Has a 40% chance to proc Glyph of the Swift. Can chain to Scythe. Costs RE.

Death From Above

Has a 50% chance to proc Glyph of the Swift. Stacks 1 edge, deals damage, and restores RE. Costs MP instead of RE.

Note that the glyphs do not stack. If you get a proc while one is already up, it will just be refreshed.

Given that Death From Above has a 10% higher chance to proc the glyph, deals damage, stacks 1 edge, and has no RE cost, it’s preferable to Evasive Roll msot of the time. However, if you need to use Scythe immediately after dodging, use Evasive Roll.

Generally, you don’t have to worry much about when these glyphs decide to proc; they’re just a nice boost to your DPS when they do proc. However, it may sometimes be worth trying to force an activation with at most one Evasive Roll before using Deadly Gamble. Forcing an activation before starting a fight is also good idea.

I would recommend either learning not to rely on these glyphs being up, or learning to pay close attention to when they are and aren’t up, so that you don’t overestimate how many attacks you can squeeze in between boss attacks. Such an overestimation could easily get you killed after Lachelith‘s third slash, for example.

Block Canceling

Block skills in TERA allow tanks to cancel the animation on skills in the same way that dodge skills do, but without the dodge animation and repositioning – merely tapping the block button is enough. This is referred to as block canceling. It can be seen as a sort of attack speed boost that you get basically for free just because you have Defensive Stance turned on.

You can cancel the animation of every single damage skill you have. Some other skills such as Battle Cry and Infuriate can also be block canceled.

Every cancelable skill has a particular window during its animation where block canceling becomes possible. This window naturally becomes smaller as you stack more attack speed (because the animation as a whole becomes faster). Further, as the client will only register and send a block cancel action to the server after you’ve reached this window, the higher your ping, the less of the animation you’re actually canceling. This does not necessarily mean that stacking attack speed is bad; it just means that high ping players will be at a significant disadvantage when playing warrior tank. Even with no attack speed stacking, their ping will still hinder them.

During Deadly Gamble, Rain of Blows and Blade Draw both have a shorter window for block canceling because the last hit of the skill happens later than it normally does. You need to adjust for this so that you don’t end up canceling before the last hit, which is devastating to your DPS as the last hit applies edge.

Some skills are more amenable to block canceling than others. Skills such as Rising Fury, Torrent of Blows, and Rain of Blows have such a short window for canceling that doing so results in a marginal DPS increase at typical warrior tank attack speed values. On the other hand, Combative Strike, Poison Blade, Blade Draw, and Scythe are skills with high DPS that are significantly better when canceled. Reaping Slash, Cascade of Stuns, Vortex Slash, and Pounce are filler skills that aren’t even worth using unless you block cancel them.

This video demonstrates block canceling on some of the above skills:

As of the Knockout patch, aggro decays over twice as fast as previously, meaning it’s important to constantly be attacking or you will lose aggro. Block canceling is an easy way to achieve this. If you’re not yet comfortable with block canceling, I strongly recommend that you go practice it on some open world BAMs until you can do it consistently.

Rising Fury Cancel

There is a technique that allows you to skip a significant portion of Rising Fury‘s animation while still getting all 3 hits. It’s similar in nature to skipping the animation on lancer’s Shield Barrage. Basically, you hold down your Rising Fury button and at just the right moment, you tap your Cross Parry button.

This is tricky to do for players with low ping because if you hold down your Cross Parry button for longer than your ping, you will simply cancel Rising Fury after the first 1-2 hits and put it on cooldown. Since this technique is extremely error-prone and failing it can mess up an opportunity to chain into Blade Draw, you may prefer to set up a macro rather than doing it by hand.

This video demonstrates the technique:

Deadly Gamble

This is your self-buff skill:

Deadly Gamble

For 24 seconds, multiplies your crit chance by 1.5 and reduces your melee skill cooldowns by 50%. The cooldown reduction stacks with cooldown reduction stats on gear and with consumables such as Prime Battle Solution. Doubles edge generation on Rain of Blows and Blade Draw, and adds 10% extra damage to Rain of Blows, Blade Draw, and Scythe.

You should try to time activation of Deadly Gamble with activation of your brooch and a proc of Glyph of the Swift. Popping Lein’s Dark Root Beer is also a good idea, if you have any. If your brooch cooldown is just a few seconds out of sync with Deadly Gamble‘s cooldown, it’s okay to wait with using Deadly Gamble until your brooch is ready.

To optimize your use of Deadly Gamble, you should save it for an enrage cycle. This is easier to do in parties with high DPS, as you’ll quickly burn the 10% HP required for the boss to enrage. Such parties will typically have 60-70% enrage uptime, making it pretty safe to just spam Deadly Gamble off cooldown.

Make sure that when you enter Deadly Gamble, you’re already at 10 edge. Entering it while below 10 edge will almost certainly mean you end up at 10 edge with Scythe still on cooldown, due to how much faster edge gets stacked during Deadly Gamble.

During Deadly Gamble, your priority system consists mainly of four combos that all stack 5 edge. Your goal is simply to use the best combo available and use Scythe after every second combo. The combos are, from best to worst:

Charging Slash Blade Draw

This is the fastest way to stack 5 edge during Deadly Gamble.

Combative Strike Traverse Cut Blade Draw

This combo takes advantage of Glyph of Powerlink (Combative Strike) from an earlier Charging SlashBlade Draw combo, and keeps your Combative Strike and Traverse Cut stacked.

Rising Fury Blade Draw

This combo takes advantage of Glyph of Powerlink (Rising Fury) from an earlier Combative StrikeTraverse CutBlade Draw combo. You will only be using this combo if you get two or more Blade Draw resets.

Poison Blade Combative Strike Rain of Blows

This combo takes advantage of Glyph of Powerlink (Combative Strike) from an earlier Charging SlashBlade Draw combo.

As I mentioned earlier, Rising Fury becomes better if you’re slaying and/or using the Rising Fury cancel technique. In that case, prioritize Rising FuryBlade Draw over Combative StrikeTraverse CutBlade Draw, but don’t forget to use the latter at least once during Deadly Gamble in order to keep Combative Strike and Traverse Cut active.

The Poison BladeCombative StrikeRain of Blows combo is not set in stone. Sometimes you may need to interleave it with other combos. For example, if you’re at 0 edge and you do Poison Blade, but a boss attack interrupts you before you can do Combative StrikeRain of Blows, there’s a good chance you’ll now be able to use Charging SlashBlade Draw or Combative StrikeTraverse CutBlade Draw. That’s an opportunity you should seize. You can then use Combative StrikeRain of Blows after.

You should have at least one of the above Blade Draw combos ready when you enter Deadly Gamble.

There are two more combos which are situationally relevant during Deadly Gamble:

Cross Parry Blade Draw

Becomes available if you need to block an attack. This combo can proc Glyph of the Pump.

Vortex Slash Blade Draw

Becomes available if you need to dodge an attack.

It may be tempting to use these if you just dodged or blocked, but since these both stack 4 edge, you should only use them if you’ve somehow ended up at 6-8 edge (no more, no less). If you use them when you’re lower than 6 edge, you’ll get into a situation where you have to use a single Combative Strike, Reaping Slash, or even a Poison Blade (with 1 wasted edge) at some point to actually reach 10 edge. This results in lower overall DPS than just using Charging SlashBlade Draw or Combative StrikeTraverse CutBlade Draw which both stack 5 edge. On the other hand, using the above two combos if you’re above 8 edge wastes so much edge on Blade Draw that you’re losing DPS compared to just using Poison Blade.

This video demonstrates how a full Deadly Gamble rotation might play out if you don’t get interrupted:

Since the warrior revamp brought massive buffs to it, Deadly Gamble has become more important than ever. It now accounts for roughly half of your DPS. Don’t slack on using it.

Managing Aggro

If you look at lancer glyphs, you’ll see that they have a ton of aggro glyphs. Even if good lancers don’t use them, they are there in case a lancer is undergeared or for some other reason is struggling with aggro. On the other hand, as you saw in the skills and glyphs section in this guide, warriors have no useful aggro glyphs. The design intent for warrior tanks is clear: You’re supposed to generate sufficient aggro through sheer damage, just like brawlers.

The vast majority of your aggro comes from Scythe and Blade Draw. This means your aggro generation is very bursty, and this is why it’s so important to learn to stack and use edge efficiently, and learn the warrior tank priority system by heart so you use Blade Draw as often as possible. If you’re struggling to hold aggro consistently against equally geared players while going through your combo priority list and not using any aggro skills, it’s almost certainly because you’re not using your edge efficiently or you’re not prioritizing Blade Draw combos enough. To be clear: Given equal gear, skill, and consumables, a warrior tank should be able to hold aggro against any damage dealer without using aggro skills, glyphs, or stats.

Of course, if you’re undergeared compared to your party’s damage dealers or you’re simply not using a bunch of consumables that they are, it’s expected that you might lose the aggro circle every now and then. It can also happen if a mechanic simply forces you to stay some distance from the boss, since aggro decay is quite fast. Finally, people dying can cause aggro to switch as well. In all of these cases, this skill is your friend:

Battle Cry

Guarantees aggro for 5sec on any affected enemies.

5sec may not seem like much, but it’s actually plenty of time to build 10 edge and use Scythe, which should stabilize your aggro. This also makes it a great skill to start a fight with.

If you lose aggro, you basically have two options for getting it back: Get to 10 edge and use Scythe, or use Battle Cry immediately. Using Battle Cry is obviously safest, but is not always necessary. Usually, if you’re above 6 edge, there’s a good chance you can use Scythe and get aggro back before the boss turns. This varies from boss to boss, so you’ll have to get a feel for what you can get away with. In any case, if you know that you can’t get aggro back before the boss turns, use Battle Cry.

Be aware that certain bosses (currently Lilith and sometimes Balbatos) have a bug where some of their attacks will reset your aggro to zero for a moment, to the point where even Battle Cry does not work. It’s not clear why this happens and there’s basically nothing you can do about it. Just save your Battle Cry for 5sec or so, after which it should work again.

If you ever need to resurrect your healer because everyone else is dead, use this skill to take over your aggro temporarily:

Smoke Flanker

Summons a near-invincible decoy that takes over your aggro for 15sec. Can be used after a successful Cross Parry (not Torrent of Blows). You must still be holding down your Cross Parry button to use this skill.

Don’t use Smoke Flanker for any other purpose as it almost always turns the boss around.

Damage Mitigation

Warrior tanks have a lot of tools to deal with incoming damage without dodging. Most of the time, you’ll simply be using your block skill:

Cross Parry

Blocks frontal attacks while the button is held down. While you’re blocking, absorbs some damage for party members who are near you and renders them completely immune to knockdowns and staggers. A successful block can proc Glyph of the Pump and allows you to chain into Blade Draw.

Cross Parry absorbs roughly 60% more than the amount of damage listed on your weapon, making it the strongest normal block skill in the game. An undergeared warrior can survive Lachelith‘s third slash with relative ease, for example.

It’s important to learn boss attack patterns so that you don’t have to hold Cross Parry for too long. I would say that if you can train yourself to not hold it down for longer than 50ms, you’re doing good. Holding it down for longer is a significant DPS loss which in turn results in lower aggro generation.

You also have this skill available for blocking attacks:

Torrent of Blows

Automatically blocks attacks while providing 50% damage reduction and immunity to knockdowns and staggers.

Torrent of Blows is an interesting skill. Because of its damage reduction effect, which is applied before the block effect, it can absorb a lot more damage than Cross Parry. In fact, combined with Smoke Aggressor (discussed below), it becomes the single strongest damage reduction skill in the game. Nothing even comes remotely close to the amount of damage this skill can absorb. It’s an excellent skill to use when you need to block an attack that you think might kill you if you use Cross Parry. It’s also great for long attacks where you’d otherwise have to hold Cross Parry for a bit. Finally, you can use it to mitigate unblockable attacks as the 50% damage reduction applies even to such attacks.

Cross Parry and Torrent of Blows can both be chained to Blade Draw on a successful block. Cross ParryBlade Draw is the single strongest combo available and you should abuse it as much as you can. Torrent of BlowsBlade Draw is not quite as good, meaning that you should only use it if you specifically need to block with Torrent of Blows. If Blade Draw is on cooldown, you shouldn’t waste your time on blocking unless you’d die if you didn’t.

If you’re not blocking, it may be a good idea to try and take attacks with your skills that have damage reduction, especially if you’re in average gear. These skills are:

Pounce

Provides 50% damage reduction. Avoid using its Glyph of the Swift as it makes it harder to utilize the damage reduction.

Rain of Blows

Provides 30% damage reduction and immunity to knockdowns and staggers.

Timing these skills is a bit trickier than timing your dodge skills; while dodge skills can cancel most animations, these skills cannot. It really boils down to knowing what the boss is going to do next, which is entirely a matter of experience.

Every patch, it seems like the developers remember that they have knockdown and stagger mechanics in the game and decide that they must have at least one boss that makes liberal use of both. In the current patch, that’s Arachandlebra. Since Rain of Blows provides immunity to knockdowns and staggers, that makes it especially useful on such bosses, as you’ll get staggered or knocked down through all other skills. For certain lengthy attacks, it’s actually worth using unchained Rain of Blows as the slower cast time will make it easier to mitigate the full attack. You can also use Torrent of Blows as mentioned earlier, but that skill has lower DPS.

If you need to mitigate a series of rapid attacks (such as Resurrected Malgarios‘s charge), this combo is perfect for that:

Pounce Rain of Blows

Provides 50% damage reduction during Pounce, followed by 30% damage reduction and immunity to knockdowns and staggers during Rain of Blows.

There is one more damage reduction skill that needs to be explained:

Smoke Aggressor

Summons a decoy that takes over your aggro for 20sec or until it dies. Costs 20% of your HP. While the aggressor is alive and within 20m, you will only take half damage from attacks; the other half will be applied to the aggressor. This effect stacks multiplicatively with damage reduction from other skills.

If you use Smoke Aggressor when you know one or more hard-hitting attacks are coming up, you won’t have to use damage reduction skills to mitigate those attacks. This helps your DPS, especially since casting Smoke Aggressor is very fast.

An interesting feature of Smoke Aggressor is the way it interacts with other damage reduction skills. If Smoke Aggressor is active and you use another damage reduction skill to mitigate an attack, you will get the 50% damage reduction from Smoke Aggressor as well as the damage reduction from whatever skill you used. These will stack multiplicatively (i.e. you can’t reach 100% reduction this way). You can even use Torrent of Blows to get 50% damage reduction twice, but also get the block effect on top of that.

To make it clear just how insane this is, let me give you an example: Let’s suppose an attack would deal 400,000 damage to you if it hit you directly without any damage reduction skills active (note that this is after all of your defensive stats have applied). If you use Smoke Aggressor and Torrent of Blows to mitigate this attack, it would be reduced to 100,000 damage, which would then be trivially absorbed by Torrent of Blows‘s block effect. In fact, an attack would have to deal around 450,000 damage before it could bleed through Torrent of Blows in this situation, or around 1,000,000 damage to actually have a realistic chance at killing you if you have Relentless etchings and max HP on earrings. Of course, you can stack other skills like lancer’s Pledge of Protection and priest’s Kaia’s Shield on top of this to absorb even more damage.

It’s also worth noting that when you don’t have aggro, you take 30% reduced damage. This means that if you let your Smoke Aggressor keep aggro after you summon it, you’ll be even tankier. In the example above, an attack would need to deal around 1,400,000 damage to kill you in this case. That said, you should only let your Smoke Aggressor keep aggro if you know it won’t mess with boss positioning. You’d normally chase the front of a boss if it turns to attack someone else in your party, but your shadow won’t do that. So if you don’t take aggro from it, the boss will turn back again. Use Battle Cry to take aggro from it in such a situation.

Enrage Mechanics

Over the course of a fight, a boss will enter so-called enrage cycles. When this happens, the boss will deal significantly more damage. During an enrage cycle, you also deal more damage to bosses thanks to gear that affects enraged monsters (e.g. Fine Focused Niveot). It’s also possible to stack enough damage reduction on armor and weapon dyads so that you’ll actually take less damage while a boss is enraged. For these reasons, higher enrage uptime is a good thing, and will significantly reduce your clear time.

Bosses enrage naturally, but you also have a skill to force an enrage cycle:

Infuriate

Enrages any affected enemies for 36sec and resets their enrage HP counter. For the duration of the enrage cycle, crystals and gear stats relating to enraged monsters will be in effect.

Here’s how the enrage mechanic works for the vast majority of endgame bosses: For every 10% of a boss’s HP that you remove while the boss is not enraged, the boss will enter an enrage cycle for exactly 36sec. If Infuriate is used, a full 36sec enrage cycle will happen regardless of whether the boss was already enraged, so you don’t want to use Infuriate during an enrage cycle unless it’s around the 35sec mark. Infuriate also resets the enrage HP counter, so you’ll have to remove 10% of the boss’s HP for it to naturally enrage again, even if the counter was at 5% (or whatever) when Infuriate was used.

You might’ve realized that this means there’s technically no such thing as a fixed enrage cycle at 90%, contrary to what many people seem to think. Rather, what happens is that the party has just removed 10% of the boss’s HP from 100% to 90%, so the boss enrages per the rules above. Here’s a video of me messing around in Shadow Sanguinary that demonstrates that a natural enrage cycle at 90% is not set in stone:

The question now is: When should you use the first Infuriate in a fight?

The main argument for using Infuriate after the first natural enrage cycle is that classes with bloodlust skills (those that deal more damage when the boss has lower HP) will deal more damage. This sounds great in theory since the majority of berserker and sorcerer skills are affected by bloodlust. Another argument is that classes that need to build up a secondary resource (mainly gunner and ninja) will have an easier time fitting their skills in.

There are multiple strong arguments against this, however: Delaying Infuriate means that some classes will miss one use of their self-buff skill during a fight, which is a significant party DPS loss. Also, procs of Dragon Master and Draconis Rex are likely to happen during the first 10% of the fight where the boss is not enraged and therefore nobody will be using their high damage, long cooldown skills. Finally, delaying Infuriate makes it significantly less likely that you’ll be able to use it twice during a fight, even if you glyph it.

Overall, I think it’s better to just use Infuriate at the start of a fight as everything will line up perfectly that way. If you have gunners or ninjas in your party and they absolutely want full willpower or chi for the Infuriate, they can just go in, attack the boss a bit, and then reset it.

Initiating Combat

This is the best way to start a fight as a warrior tank:

  1. Stack Traverse Cut before starting the fight (e.g. on mobs, eggs on Resurrected Malgarios, or by resetting the boss). This isn’t really a big deal and is completely optional.
  2. Spam Evasive Roll to force a Glyph of the Swift activation.
  3. Use Smoke Flanker if you need some extra damage reduction during your initial Deadly Gamble.
  4. If you have a Quickcarve Brooch for double brooching, switch to it and activate it, then switch to your gear profile with your main brooch.
  5. Run into the boss room and use Backstab to turn the boss away from the rest of your party. Skip this step on stationary bosses and bosses that tend to walk towards the room entrance.
  6. Use Battle Cry immediately after to ensure that you have aggro while you cast your next skills.
  7. Use Infuriate, Deadly Gamble, and pop a Lein’s Dark Root Beer if you have any. If you’re not double brooching, use your brooch now.
  8. Start your Deadly Gamble rotation with Combative StrikeTraverse CutBlade Draw and make sure to stack Traverse Cut fully (if you didn’t earlier).
  9. If you’re double brooching, use your main brooch immediately when your Quickcarve Brooch expires.

From that point on, you just follow the guide as usual.


Tips & Tricks

This is a sort of grab bag for things I couldn’t neatly fit into other areas of the guide.

Surviving Lachelith’s triple donut AoE

This attack requires a lot of max HP to survive – over 150,000 to be exact. It is actually possible to get this much max HP without sacrificing any of your Fine Hardy Niveot crystals or damage reduction stats on your armor. To reach high enough max HP, you must have two Relentless etchings, 4% max HP on both of your earrings, the Elinu’s Vigor guild skill maxed out, maxed Vanguard Valor (the login buff), and Lamb Bulgogi and Freeholds Flame Salad popped. All these things together put me just over 160,000 max HP, which is plenty to comfortably eat this attack. It also helps on spheres.

Tanking Perimos with DD crystals

You don’t actually have to tank Perimos in the traditional sense. You can equip a DD crystal setup while still being in Defensive Stance and attack him from behind like your party’s damage dealers. By simply being in Defensive Stance, you prevent him from charging away from your party even when you’re behind him.

Blocking heavy attacks in Harrowhold

Many attacks in Harrowhold that other tanks consider ‘unblockable’ because the damage bleeds significantly through their block, sometimes to the point of killing them, are actually entirely blockable by a warrior tank. For example, you can fairly easily block Vergos‘s jumps and triple smashes with Cross Parry. You can also block his side-to-side breath (the one in phases 2 and 4 only) with Torrent of Blows. All blockable attacks in phase 1 that would kill other tanks are also blockable with Torrent of Blows.


Future Changes

In this section, I’ll go over some of the upcoming changes to the warrior class and how it affects warrior tank gearing and skill priorities going forward.

No major changes on the horizon right now.


Credits

I’d like to thank the following people for helping make this guide possible:

  • Austin: Testing and confirming the interaction between Fine Carving Niveot and Scythe, as well as figuring out how hidden damage taken modifiers work in PvE.
  • Bernkastel: General theorycrafting of the warrior revamp.
  • Ehrgeix: Discussions about ping, skill queuing, and animation data.
  • Homingun: Theorycrafting of the effectiveness of crit versus power and Fine Carving Niveot versus Fine Pounding Niveot.
  • Ketoth: Gathering and compiling animation data for all races/classes, figuring out the most accurate crit chance formula to date, and calculating the value of edge for warrior tanks.
  • Kourinn: Extensive in-game animation testing which I used as a basis of comparison for my theorycrafted combo rankings.
  • Roukanken: Lots of discussions about warrior tanking, testing animation speed in-game, and bringing Rising Fury cancel to my attention.

34 Comments

  1. Defensive Stance – the saved glyphs has been changed, you can’t simply apply one saved glyph with endurance then switch to one without and have it still take effect as you’ve mentioned. In fact, if you switch glyph sets, you are put out of defensive stance.

  2. Just stumbled across this site as a old player contemplating a light return to Tera. I saw that there was a guide for my beloved class and playstyle the Warrior Tank. I have to saw absolutely wonderful guide!

    i played a lot from right after the end of wounded world (forget the patch name) to right before Brawler release with SC and TS and Lucid being the hot things. I saw warrior tanks go from something people didn’t understand very well and be averse to to the contested tank of choice back to less played when Brawler came out. I considered myself to be one of the more knowledgeable warrior tanks at the time and after doing various research, pushing the then controversial “dps tank” which seems to have since become the norm. And things like using the smoke flanker which was like taboo to most and I had to argue for situational uses has now become much more accepted in those situations. It’s really exciting to see how different things are now and how much more people have helped the warrior tank evolve!

    It seems like there have been various cool and various weird changes. Torrent of blows getting a block seems super cool and now I can’t wait to test it (just getting back into things) while on the other hand RIP the endurance debuff of traverse cut. Glyphs also look a bit different than I remember, though not sure if it’s because new glyphs or changes making certain glyphs better. But some things you mentioned I had not thought of as much before so it sounds pretty cool to go back into testing the optimal setup.

    Definitely kudos to a well written, detailed guide that doesn’t hurt ones eyes despite the amount of information. Lots of new things to try and old things to remaster… Glad that there are passionate players like you making informative guides still (I feared what to do after I found out that all my old info sites like Teratoday and Zephya were all gone). And guides that make me pumped to try out what they are about are always the best kind!

  3. Hello, I am new on tera, I would like to know how it is that chains evasive roll with sythe, since evasive roll is not a skill trigger thanks 😀

  4. Also, do you block-cancel poison blade during deadly gamble? I ask because I’ve been doing CombS -> RoB -> PB where you do PB -> CombS -> RoB.

    • Profile photo of Zorex

      Technically you gain more from block canceling PB than RoB, which is why you want to PB -> CS -> RoB. In reality, though, it’s not gonna matter. The difference is so minor that it won’t change how many rotations you get off during DG. So if you’re more comfortable with CS -> RoB -> PB, you can just keep doing that.

  5. Any word on exactly how we should gear ourselves now that we have the +15% crit chance?

  6. Hi, how do you keep the glyph of grounding when switching glyph pages? When I try to do it dstance just toggles off on its own (in gif: https://gyazo.com/97c85aefa95fe204606a20371bd4c27c).

  7. Nice guide indeed.. It gave me some good hints I never thought about, like block cancelling.. Simple, yet effective.. (potential more damage due to the glyph and BD chain)… Still, the crit… I dunno, but I never really had a problem with a reliable crit % whilst front scything… I started tanking with my warrior prior the recent patch benefits (jewlery kits, front passive, overall damage buff)… I averaged around 87% for front scythe nevertheless… Though, I am running full energetic III – discarded the keen II etchings all together. So that was with +209 crit modifier. Currently I have +227 crit modifier in D-Stance – not even using a quatrefoil nor quickcarve brooch (I use the shunned grounding brooch (with my almost perfect rolls (currently totals at 82.5% gear aggro – could keep the aggro against two VM users whilst doing a third of their damage))) AND the extra endurance. It can be a life safer for all attacks which are not flat damage due to its endurance boost – eventually – combined with Conflate Belt/Gloves (higher base defense, for a little damage trade-off), as I can just afford Guile+12 and no VM gear. E.g. with priest only (and DFA glyph) I reach ca. +50k defense modifier for 30sec.
    Anyhow, back to crit. Currently I have +227 crit which is, at least in my runs, quite enough to get 100% scythe; given the boss doesn’t turn during execution. Thus, to maintain a stable aggro, I still use a threatening dyad on my weapon.

    Though, I currently experiment with my rotation. I figured what I did was bulls… I figured my keyboard is bulls… and two weeks ago it even started to fail me (after good 11 years)… I remapped my skill hotkeys – failed hard for two days. Now, taking your tips into account and trying to memorize a new rotation (and key settings) I surprisingly increased by up to 200k/s after three days training in some of the runs… Guess there is still room for improvement (dunno how much one can do with Guile+12, but my tanking damage was quite low (depending on the boss) as it ranges around 370-500k/s…. I sometimes had peaks of over 700k/s, but I think that was more given by “better gear than needed for that boss”… (e.g. boss #1 SS NM, can even do around 1.5m/s in DD mode with that gear)…

    Still, I have a question… the “Glyph of threat” from Battle Cry… How really useless is it? I still have it on – eventually wasting points… I primarily use the cry quite often if the DDs just can’t wait for me to take the initial aggro (yep, that is running with randoms indeed)… Up until now I hesitate to remove that glyph… since I really run 90% with randoms only. I am wondering, how “safe” it is to remove it.. I still feel like it being my ‘last resort’ if all fails me.. (the aforementioned reason or dying or too long block phases etc.)…

    • Profile photo of Zorex

      Extensive testing of front crit Scythes on Atrocitas in RMHM has shown that going below 240 total crit factor still leaves a possibility to get non-crit Scythes. While the chance of that happening may be low, even one non-crit is enough to ruin your DPS and possibly destabilize your aggro. Obviously you can get away with non-critting Scythes if you use a Threatening crystal, but then you’re losing out on even more DPS.

      Glyph of Threat on Battle Cry really is 100% useless. Battle Cry will unconditionally guarantee aggro for you for the next 5sec. That’s plenty of time to get an entire Scythe rotation off. You might think that the glyph is nice for getting a bit of extra aggro beyond those 5sec, but it’s actually not. The ‘base’ aggro of Battle Cry (i.e. how much aggro it generates besides the 5sec perma aggro) is next to nothing, so doubling that value actually doesn’t do much.

      If anything, pick up Glyph of Energy for Battle Cry so you can use it more often if you have aggro problems.

      • Well, sorry for the belated reply. I had to test some things out over time. Also the new patch was/is quite a challenge to overcome. At least with average gear as I have (Misery boots and armor, VM8+12 gloves and weapon + belt). It’s putting up quite an effort to leather based tanks (in my opinion). First, the main problem I had was probably too long blocking times. I managed to get it down to the last millisecond now. Though, sometimes late, but most of the time just right. I still survive 🙂 . Also, getting used to “Torrent of Blows” in the blocking chain was another thing I had to get in my head; along with the rotation change I did.
        The min-crit seems to have dramatically improved with the current patch. While on some runs it works just fine with > +240 (with myst and power based +270), on other runs (especially hard modes) I found myself sometimes with just 88% scythe crit; although the boss wasn’t turning at all and edge was max.
        I also made a little change in my glyph setup, removing the swift glyph from DFA and the Infuriate CD glyph. Putting the points into lingering Traverse Cut, CS -> Rising Fury Powerlink glyph and also activated the CP power glyph (found it like 50% triggering (per run)). Especially for the VH HM Veldeg in mind this was the best (for me) with Misery Armor and Grounded III. Speaking of which, I really had to make a second misery armor with tank stats (i.e. 8.9% damage reduction (aggro)) since the damage was way too high if not blocked in time (main defense from the previous patch came from Conflate mix). That’s one of the things of this patch, VS NM/HM and VH HM have quite a damage on leather. I still have to get revived Darkan down since two sword hits basically kill me (~3% HP left at most; slightly more with boosted defense (+50k modifier)). One of the best things for Warrior tank is the blocking with ToB. Veldeg’s double hammer (in HM), Cross Parry the first strike, immediately cast ToB and you’re good to go. No dodge away, just continue doing damage (and all the people screaming via TS/chat : “RUN! YOU CAN’T BLOCK THAT!”, just find it funny 😀 ). The double dispell explosion phase also can be reduced to almost nothing with Shadow and ToB just before he casts it (0 to 22k damage even without Kaias). But, at least I still have to block quite a lot attacks, eventually VM armor would help out a good deal. That’s why I put the lingering glyph on Traverse Cut. 40 seconds is just enough to find a slot to recharge it (i.e Boom, Turning around for the backslash etc.); even with damage reduction Traverse Cut is kind of ‘dangerous’ to be applied during normal hits (maybe if you have static heals that know you really well). Anyhow, I still need to work on my D-Stance damage; it’s kind of low (up to 500k/s in HM (avg 350k/s), up to 800k/s (avg 650k/s) in most NM); I am not using anything but Prime BS and (Strong) Bravery or Strong Cane… Though, I once had to put in Noct and Lamb due to a VM9+15 Valkyrie (300k attack-stat) with >3.2M/s damage… Well, that aside, I leave the few tipps here if some Warrior Tank (w/ average gear) also has some kind of troubles with the current patch (in the hard modes). I hope you don’t mind.

  8. I think there is a mismatch between your skill description and the skill build that you have provided. In the skill build, you actually put glyph points in combative strike: powerlink but I am pretty sure in your explanation you said “I do not even know why this skill exist” and voted against it.

  9. It is a great guide Thank you very much, I’ve been looking for something like this for a while

  10. Nice guide and thanks for the crit cap number been looking for that since the update.

    Also as a warrior that loves tanking specifically for RMHM the last boss when tanking for when warriors get debuff I have a suggestion for the “tips and tricks” section. Since even in absolute horrible gear (Starfall everything lol) I can reliably tank with the debuff, with minimal damage something like 10-15k per hit and 0 on the third hit of course. I am sure you know about it which is block 1st and 2nd hit and torrent of blows the final hit, making the damage possible to even pot past the damage if the healer is having some issues with the group.

    Anyway nice guide hopefully more people will start tanking correctly and stop making people scared to even try a warrior tank in groups >.>

  11. never seen a good warrior tank. You said at the beginning that warrior are like brawler and have a good personal dps. What does “good” mean to you? I personally don’t like em since they are useless without endurance reduce

  12. Thanks for the fantastic guide! As someone who’s advocated warrior tanks since pre-block times (those were hilarious), it’s nice to see some love. With that being said, how much power did you end up with after reaching max gear and crit cap? Just as a reference.

    • Profile photo of Zorex

      Unbuffed I’m at +152 power with my mystic setup. +132 with my priest setup. Note that my priest setup is built with the assumption that I use Lamb Bulgogi to get to the Scythe crit cap. Also, I use 4x Swift Vyrsks in both setups.

  13. A Warrior Tank guide, FINALLY!! I read through this and didn’t see any actual crit cap number for Scythe. Is it the same (330) as DPS Warrior now with the new 6% buff?

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *