TSW Bard DPS Hybrid Build Guide

TSW Bard DPS Hybrid Build Guide by rrauwl

As I gear up to run NM beyond 18/18, I was looking at conventional group makeup and how it might be enhanced. In examining typical group mechanics, some things became evident:

A) Stacking all of your beneficial buffs at the same time (such as Deadly Aim / Breaching Shot / Do or Die) is much better than spacing them out. While this can be done by multiple party members via Mumble or TS, its simply much easier and more coordinated to pop them all yourself.

B) The key element to putting as much DPS on the target as possible is survival. DPS flows best when everyone is alive of course, but it also flows best when they are not under the THREAT of death. There’s less pressure, and there’s less need for paranoid tactics on low percentage threats.

With these things in mind, I set out to build something that is specific to the role of ‘Third DPS’. A DPS that would be focused on maximizing the efficiency of the ENTIRE party.

The Bard (10.1 gear):

http://www.tsw-builder.com/#78v77070…53773703932636

Striker
Out for a Kill
Start and Finish
Deadly Aim
Breaching Shot
Flak Jacket
Do or Die / Cleanup

Breach Party
Calling the Shots
Social Dynamo
Punisher
Dead on Target
Lethality
Live Wire

OR

The Bard (10.4 gear):

http://www.tsw-builder.com/#78v77070…53773703932636

Striker
Out for a Kill
Start and Finish
Deadly Aim
Breaching Shot
Flak Jacket
Do or Die / Cleanup

Twist the Knife
Iron Maiden
Social Dynamo
Punisher
Dead on Target
Lethality
Live Wire

Usage:

The gearing theory is simple. All AR. Focus gear on getting 450 Hit, Pen, and Crit. Then evenly worth the Pen and Crit up. Balance your glyphs with upgrading in mind.

Striker: Delivers your big buff and debuff, Social Dynamo and Punisher. Crit rating helps the entire group, including healing. Thus Social Dynamo boosts the overall crit rating of the party by 750. Punisher reduces the big boss’ damage by 30 percent. This increases livability across the board, and allows the healer some breathing room.

Out for a Kill / Start and Finish: Simply efficient ways to translate resources to damage.

Deadly Aim / Breaching Shot: To be used together, always. Blow them at first opportunity that the boss will be sitting there for 10 seconds, and as often as possible thereafter. Use with Do or Die the first time, though the cycles will desynch.

Flak Jacket: Use in times of add floods or when you know for a fact that heavy damage or AoE is incoming. This must be timed well, simply cycling it every time it is available isn’t the point.

Do or Die: Use whenever it is available and you’re going to be doing damage for the next 10 seconds. Yes it’s nice to synch with your other buffs, but not worth losing 20 seconds every time on the wait.

This won’t beat a pure DPS build for personal damage of course, but the ability to crit boost the entire party, reduce damage by 30 percent (and more with Flak Jacket), and create pockets of massive whole-party damage more than makes up for loss of personal DPS.

But you can only run 1 in a party.

Why? Debilitate doesn’t stack. Social Dynamo doesn’t stack. There’s rarely a need for more than one person with Flak Jacket. And you need a couple of focused DPS’s to take full advantage of the pockets of spike damage that you’re creating.

I did try this build with Authority, but the extra 6 percent to crit and pen every minute just wasn’t worth losing Live Wire for the full duration of the fight.

I don’t have access to 10.4 yet (thanks to Nipsnaps for the higher level perspective), so feel free to run the numbers yourselves… however the averages will need to be across SEVERAL runs, as the livability metrics are evident in the long term, not in the short term. Rate on total dungeon clear time, which is the only metric that matters in the end. The theory is, less wipes = faster runs. This build should facilitate less wipes.

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