Dragonknight Tank / Off DPS


Welcome to Dragonknight Tanking with Off DPS! This build is extremely effective in doing damage as a tank but also the most challenging build I’ve ever created. You can hit in the range of 10-20k DPS while tanking, but it will take a lot of time to practice and get the play style down. You will likely run out of Magicka constantly until you get used to the build so don’t get discouraged, it’s super fun to play running around as a tank knowing that you can hit harder than a lot of 720’s running around.

This build will enable you to tank and do a good amount of DPS. This is great for solo play and group play where you have a good solid group and want to contribute to the overall DPS and need to focus on tanking when it matters.

Resource Management

Resources are managed through heavy attacking with the Destro staff and spell power/trash pots. Again, resource management will be very challenging to start out. It will take time balancing your heavy attacks and still being able to do damage. The key to this is knowing when to use damage skills and when to tank. Running through mobs of adds, the whole build changes to DPS and you aren’t doing any tanking with the exception of chains and talons. Use them sparingly because they are costly and if you use them too much, you won’t have any Magicka left for DK DPS skills before needing to heavy attack for resources. When you are on a boss, you are going to primarily tank it and as long as you are keeping your health up AND maintaining aggro, you can focus on DPS skills also. Remember, this is primarily a tanking build so tank first, do damage if and when you can. Prioritize!

Character Sheet

Attributes: 32 Max Health | 32 Max Magicka
This was taken fully buffed, and without skill points being invested in Undaunted passives, so health will sit somewhere between 35k-37k with all Passives invested.

Gear Setup

5pc Heavy Clever Alchemist, 3pc Willpower Jewelry, 2pc Lord Warden Dusk, 2pc Julianos

Gear Set Weight Trait Enchantment
Weapon 1 Julianos Lightning Staff Nirnhoned Weapon Damage
Off Hand 1
Weapon 2 Julianos One Handed Defending Hardening
Off Hand 2 Julianos Shield Sturdy Max Health
 Head Lord Warden Dusk Medium Sturdy Max Health
Chest Clever Alchemist Heavy Sturdy Max Health
Shoulder Lord Warden Dusk Heavy Sturdy Max Health
Waist Clever Alchemist Heavy Sturdy Max Health
Hands Clever Alchemist Light Sturdy Max Health
Legs Clever Alchemist Heavy Sturdy Max Health
Feet Clever Alchemist Heavy Sturdy Max Health
Neck Willpower Jewelry Arcane Spell Damage
Ring 1 Willpower Jewelry Arcane Spell Damage
Ring 2 Willpower Jewelry Arcane Spell Damage

Gear Selection and Location

  • Clever Alchemist – Craftable Set
    • We want this set in heavy to add to the resistances and the heavy armor passives, but this particular set provides a massive boost to spell power when you drink a potion so this will be a good buff set to use and help out in your overall DPS
  • Willpower – Daily Dungeon Reward
    • This is to provide extra Magicka and spell damage for the build. Once Summerset comes out, these pieces will be replaced with Julianos so you will run 5 piece Julianos and 5 piece Clever Alchemist and the Willpower jewelry will become obsolete.
  • Lord Warden Dusk‘s Monster Set – Head: Imperial City Prison / Shoulders: Urgalarg Chief-Bane’s Undaunted Chest
    • You COULD use Mighty Chudan’s set for the resistances, but this build utilizes Volatile Armor which already grants you Major Ward and Resolve, so why do it twice? If you used Chudan, you’d have to put a different skill in place of Volatile Armor.
  • Julianos – Craftable Set
    • This will replace Willpower come Summerset and become a 5 pieces set to add Magicka and Spell Damage/Crit. Simple explanation, this is focused on the damage dealing part of the build.


Dragonknight Open in build planner »

32M / 32H / 0S
  • Bar 1
    • Molten Armaments – This skill grants you Major Sorcery, increasing your Spell Damage. It also increases heavy attack damaged by 40%. So this should always be active when dealing damage and ESPECIALLY when heavy attacking for Magicka resource recovery. If you are doing more tanking than DPS’ing, you can switch this out with Fiery Grip so you can pull the adds into you like a good DK Tank will be expected to do. I chose to omit this particular skill on the DPS build because rather than pulling them to you, you can go kill them yourself 🙂
    • Choking Talons – This is another standard DK Tank skill to be used on mobs, holding them in place so more damage can be done to them. Using this in conjunction with your Elemental Blockade will help dish out the DPS from your side as well as help others who also have AoE’s going on the mob
    • Pierce Armor – Your melee taunt. This is also a debuff reducing the enemies physical and spell resistance, so always a mandatory tanking skill.
    • Volatile Armor – These are your spikes on your back. This raises your Physical and Spell Resistance. Use it every time before a fight and for the longer ones, use it during also! This particular morph also shoots spikes out upon activation so that helps do some damage AND hopefully grab aggro when you run into a group of adds.
    • Fragmented Shield – This is your standard damage shield and when it expires, it does damage to nearby enemies so every little bit helps.
    • Ultimate: Magma Shell – This is a good Ultimate to help allies with a damage shield as well as limit your incoming damage. Works out really well when you know you’re going to be hit hard and/or frequently in those boss battles. Also does DoT(Damage over Time) to nearby enemies.
  • Bar 2
    • Flame Lash – This is your main damaging skill. If an enemy is Off Balance, you will not only do additional damage but you’ll heal yourself at the same time. Fortunately, this build slots Elemental Blockade, so Off Balance is easily attainable
    • Elemental Blockade – This is a great DoT also and as mentioned above, it sets enemies Off Balance which will help your Flame Lash skill do more damage and heal yourself as well
    • Inner Fire – Your standard ranged taunt. It’s great to have the ranged and melee taunts because one is Magicka and one is Stamina. If you’re low on one resource and NEED to taunt, then use the other resource based taunt.
    • Coagulating Blood – This is a burst heal for you and also grants Major Fortitude, increasing Health Recovery. It’s expensive for Magicka, so use it only when necessary. Also keep in mind that it scales additional Health gained the lower your health goes. So when your health is lower, it will heal you for more… and then if the skill crits, then it very well may fully heal you. Use it wisely.
    • Flames of Oblivion – Simply having this slotted grants you Major Prophecy, increasing your Spell Critical rating so it’s always better to be doing damage(Magicka scaling) when on this bar. The skill also does damage when activated, but this is primarily here for the Spell Critical. However if you have the opportunity to, then activate this too!
    • Ultimate: Ferocious Leap – This is a great, low cost Ultimate. Not only does it deal a large amount of damage and knock back adds, but it grants a MASSIVE 103% damage shield after you leap. At the time of making this write up with 35k health, that’s just over a 35k damage shield for 6 seconds… great in clutch situations. You can also slot Warhorn or the One Hand and Shield ultimate if you’d prefer but I prefer this Ultimate just for the damage shield and the initial burst damage on groups of adds when solo.

CP Allocation (720)

  • The Tower
    • Warlord – 30
  • The Lover
    • Arcanist – 67
    • Tenacity – 68
  • The Shadow
    • Shadow Ward – 75
  • The Apprentice
    • Elfborn – 50
    • Elemental Expert – 50
    • Spell Erosion – 50
  • The Atronach
    • Staff Expert – 20
    • Master-at-Arms – 30
  • The Ritual
    • Thaumaturge – 40
  • The Steed
    • Ironclad – 30
    • Spell Shield – 20
  • The Lady
    • Elemental Defender – 50
    • Thick Skinned – 30
    • Hardy – 50
  • The Lord
    • Expert Defender – 35
    • Heavy Armor Focus – 25


  • Recommended Race: Imperial, for their additional Health and Stamina pools because you’re already going to be low on Stamina since this focuses on Health and Magicka

Mundus Stone

  • Apprentice (For Max Spell Damage)

Buff Food, Potions, Poisons

  • Purple Tri-Food to help all three resource pools
  • Trash Potions/Crit Potions/Spell Power Potions (But you’re going to need SOMETHING to keep getting the max use out of the Clever Alchemist set)

Passives Required

  • Class Passives: All passives
  • Destruction Staff: All Passives
  • Heavy Armor: All Passives
  • One Hand and Shield: All Passives
  • Undaunted: All passives
  • Racial: All passives
  • Alchemy: Medicinal Use (Not necessary but good for trying other builds later)


As primarily a tank, you need to always keep your taunt up. Taunting is quite literally, the only reason you’re here… taunting and absorbing the damage, but mainly the taunt. Keep taunt active and then if/when necessary, you can look play with rotation. As a tank, keeping your Volatile Armor up will also help with your resistances and make the rotation easier to get through. There isn’t a huge rotation to this, but there are a few points to remember so I’ll bullet point them:

  • Keep your Molten Armaments active to buff your heavy attack damage as well as any spell damage skills
  • Keep Elemental Blockade down to continue doing damage and following that up with Flame Lash to maximize the damage you’re doing
  • Most importantly… when you’re in combat(not before you go into it), drink a potion of some kind to keep that spell damage buffed up too

Build Credit to Texecutioner187


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