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Can anyone help with a simple solo nightblade build?

Saccarius
Saccarius
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Okay so here's my predicament. My first character and now dedicated crafter is a nightblade but I either suck at it (likely) or I'm just hardwired to not enjoy the class at all.

So I moved on and started playing my main who is a stam sorc and everything just clicked for me. I'm in gold crafted, overland, agility gear so not BIS for DPS and I can solo most non-vet, non-DLC content and anything overland is a breeze and I'm not a super efficient player. I love playing him.

Trouble is, is that my nightblade has all the schematics and does all my master writs and has all the traits researched. But playing him, I feel weak and fragile and like I don't know what I'm doing even know I pore over build guides, I can't get to grips with it.

The build guides I look at require dungeon sets, monster sets and max CP and it's a massive investment for a class I don't really enjoy playing (maybe that can change)...

So what I need is a build that lets me do the following:

Navigate Imperial City without it turning into a death run each time (talking about mobs not players, I expect to die to them)
Clear overland content, especially public dungeons with relative ease (still need skill points etc.)

And I need to start off with crafted/overland sets before I commit to farming specific gear. I can upgrade it to gold if I need to. I have access to all the DLC.
The basic playstyle should be relatively simple.
I had a magicka build that relied on constantly shielding myself but it doesn't seem to be working so great anymore and I'm not a fan of staves as I'm used to stam weapons.

I'm only at CP445.

I think I've had so many ups and downs with this class that I've kind of ruined it for myself and I don't how to find the fun or get out of that mindset....

Anyone have any advice? I'd really appreciate it.
Edited by Saccarius on December 24, 2019 6:34PM
saccarius | PC | EU
Almost master crafter
Altoholic and decorating neophyte.
Say hello, I'll say hello back.
Gaymer
  • xWarbrain
    xWarbrain
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    Try Briarheart (Wrothgar overland stam set that heals you when you deal crit damage) with New Moon Acolyte (crafted), Hundings (crafted) or Shacklebreaker (crafted). There's a quest in Wrothgar that gives a Briarheart dagger as a reward if you dual wield, and another that gives the chest. 2H/Bow is strong though too. Use Rally (2H) and Vigor to heal. Morph Cleave into Brawler (2H) for a good AoE damage ability that also gives you a shield. The Bow ultimate Ballista ability is one of the strongest single target skills in the game, great for Public Dungeon bosses.

    Don't worry about gold items (except weapons) since the difference between purple gear and gold gear isn't enough to really matter. 445CP is enough to do almost all content.

    Edit: forget the dagger, you should really consider 2 hand with Bow back bar.
    Edited by xWarbrain on December 24, 2019 6:48PM
    XB1 NA
    "Your nerf suggestion is dumb. Learn to counter other players instead of having the game rebuilt to your ability level." - Me, in every nerf suggestion thread.
  • xWarbrain
    xWarbrain
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    A better nightblade can correct me but bar set up would be:

    2 hand: Brawler, Leeching Strikes, Rally, Relentless Focus, Barbed Trap, Dawnbreaker/Onslaught/Incap
    Bow: Endless Hail, Vigor, Poison Injection, Cloak, Shadow Image, Ballista
    Edited by xWarbrain on December 24, 2019 6:56PM
    XB1 NA
    "Your nerf suggestion is dumb. Learn to counter other players instead of having the game rebuilt to your ability level." - Me, in every nerf suggestion thread.
  • Saccarius
    Saccarius
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    xWarbrain wrote: »
    A better nightblade can correct me but bar set up would be:

    2 hand: Brawler, Leeching Strikes, Rally, Relentless Focus, Barbed Trap, Dawnbreaker/Onslaught/Incap
    Bow: Endless Hail, Vigor, Poison Injection, Cloak, Shadow Image, Ballista


    Thanks for the advice. Would you go with Thief for extra crit/heal and where would you suggest focusing CP first. There seems to be a standard stam setup for DW/bow but I wondered if the sets you suggest or the the 2H means I need to check out nodes that I might overlook.

    Either way, I'm going to set it up on the PTS and try it out later. Thanks again.
    saccarius | PC | EU
    Almost master crafter
    Altoholic and decorating neophyte.
    Say hello, I'll say hello back.
    Gaymer
  • xWarbrain
    xWarbrain
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    If you feel like you can survive with dual wield instead of 2H, by all means go for it. I chose to recommend 2H for Rally and Brawler, 2 really strong defensive skills. Rally has a nice burst heal and gives Major Brutality which is important, and without it you're really relying on Vigor for your healing. But if you go with Briarheart you should be okay if you want to DW instead.

    What race are you? That plays into CP and Mundus a lot, but Thief is good on any Stam class, especially for Briarheart since you need to crit often. Once you hit a certain % of weapon crit without thief, shadow mundus becomes stronger (I think its 50% but I don't remember). Serpent/Lover/Warrior all good choices too. CP I'm not so sure about off the top of my head for Stam.
    XB1 NA
    "Your nerf suggestion is dumb. Learn to counter other players instead of having the game rebuilt to your ability level." - Me, in every nerf suggestion thread.
  • Saccarius
    Saccarius
    ✭✭✭
    xWarbrain wrote: »
    If you feel like you can survive with dual wield instead of 2H, by all means go for it. I chose to recommend 2H for Rally and Brawler, 2 really strong defensive skills. Rally has a nice burst heal and gives Major Brutality which is important, and without it you're really relying on Vigor for your healing. But if you go with Briarheart you should be okay if you want to DW instead.

    What race are you? That plays into CP and Mundus a lot, but Thief is good on any Stam class, especially for Briarheart since you need to crit often. Once you hit a certain % of weapon crit without thief, shadow mundus becomes stronger (I think its 50% but I don't remember). Serpent/Lover/Warrior all good choices too. CP I'm not so sure about off the top of my head for Stam.

    I'm fine with the 2h but all the pure DPS builds I've played and CP I've allocated have been DW/bow. I just wondered if there was anything particularly different I should focus on but I can check it out myself later. I think there is a node that boosts your shield for example but I haven't used it. I'm currently a Wood Elf but I have a couple of race change tokens sitting around.
    saccarius | PC | EU
    Almost master crafter
    Altoholic and decorating neophyte.
    Say hello, I'll say hello back.
    Gaymer
  • witchdoctor
    witchdoctor
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    @Saccarius

    Nightblade is a tough class to master.

    Relentless Focus is the centre piece of NB. Its why the rotation is dynamic, because it should take priority over any next skill. But you can either drop it, or just keep a static rotation and not worry about it.

    NB is also inherently squishy. Leeching Strikes, Focus, and eventually Vigor from PVP are the normal PVE heals for a NB.

    Sustain can be tough too without keeping Leeching up.

    It appears you don't plan on doing vet content on it. So, how about you try sets that will let you cover gaps?

    Sustain, damage, and maybe some armour. This would all be crafted, and no monster set.

    5-piece #1: Daring Corsair. Never used it, but it should be a good sustain set. Could be fun. Recovery plus cost reduction. The Heroisom will make your Incap Strike come up even more often.
    5-piece #2: Hunding's Rage. Staple set. Cannot go wrong with having one in your bank.
    2-piece (to be used on helm and shoulders in case you want to sub a Monster set): anything that gives Armour as the 2-piece, e.g., Alessia's Bulwark.

    You could sub in any defensive monster set. Iceheart, even though a 'magicka' set is good because you should be doing crit damage very often. Bloodspawn is a classic. Between Daring Corsair and Bloodspawn your ultimate should be up so often. Or an offensive set. Kill *** before it kills you always works.

    2H and bow, or DW and bow. Probably comes down to preference. 2H can add in some defensive tools like someone pointed out above. DW has Blade Cloak as an defensive skill. If you use 2H, may want to swap Executioner/Reverse Slice for Killer's Blade. You don't need 2x execute skills.

    I'd go with Shadow for your mundus. You should have a high crit rating. Maximise that crit damage.

    Woodelf can be fine. I'm a big fan of Dunmer with NBs just cause theya re equally good at magicka and stamina in case you get the itch to try magblade.

    Front Bar: Executioner/Reverse Slice or Killer's Blade; Surprise Attack; Carve/Whirling Blades/Rending Slashes/Blade Cloak; Barbed Trap (on front bar for Fighter's Guild passive bonus); Relentless Focus; Incap Strike is your ultimate

    Back Bar: Poison Injection; Arrow Barrage/Endless Hail; Soul Trap (any morph)/Flex; Leeching Strikes; Dark Shade/Vigor; Incap Strike (this is your ultimate)

    The skill loadout is pretty meta. Don't even have to use Relentless Focus, just activate it for the defensive buff. Use it when you can.

    You could fit in Cloak somewhere for the stealth. You won't get many casts being a stamblade, though.

    A bi-stat food should be all you need. That Corsair set plus Leeching Strikes should give you more than plenty recovery.

    I'd go stamina on all pieces, Divines on armour, Nirnhoned mainhand (sharpened off-hand), Infused back bar. Poison glyph on mainhand (absorb stamina on offhand), weeapon damage on back bar. Your choice on jewels, I'd think. Bloodthirsty, Infused, Robust. Maybe a Protective if you still feel too squishy? Weapon damage enchants, or recovery if you still need it.

    Anyways, that's a stab at trying to stay 'meta' enough, but going out of the box for the gear to cover what I think might be where you are struggling.
    Edited by witchdoctor on December 26, 2019 7:44AM
  • Rory_FightingToFifty
    I’ve played a stamblade since release, and it’s still my favorite. It plays really different from other classes, which is probably why you feel there’s a learning curve. Some tips:

    Hundings rage plus briarhearts will be awesome...the heal from briars really helps. If you can, you might want to craft the jewelry as Hundings to save a lot of gold getting / farming briars. Velidreth is a good monster set to pair.

    I prefer dw daggers plus bow. I think the class is really designed well for this setup. Attack bar: try to put more assassin skill line skills here for the crit bonus. I like to slot shrouded daggers for PvE...the major brutality plus three hits will pump out the dps. Surprise attack is a great spam skill. You can slot reapers mark for a continual heal. Assassins blade for heal plus resources. Sometimes I “waste” a slot w camo hunter for the crit buff.

    Back bar...poison inject, leeching strikes, cloak, vigor. All pretty essential for sewer farming. The soul trap upgraded skill is really good...soul splitting trap. This gives a stamblade a nice aoe, which is where they’re weak. Plus you get a ton a damage from your magic pool...nice. I find that entering a mob w soul trap then some daggers has them all down to execute pretty much before they even react.

    Note on relentless focus - I get how important it is for the class. However, I find that I put out SO MUCH damage that the spectral bow is a bit unnecessary. Sometimes I slot it still, but I don’t love the skill since they nerfed it.

    Class playstyle tips:

    I could write tons, but let’s keep it simple.

    Overall, a big difference in transitioning from stam sorc is that your other character is about taking damage and laughing it off...a nightblade is about avoiding damage and laughing it off. You want to learn not to take the hits...a dodgy nightblade is a happy nightblade.

    Reapers mark offers you free heals and a dps boost...it’s free...try to keep marking the NPCs you’re about to kill so you don’t have to cast vigor as much. Likewise, don’t underestimate killer’s blade. That heal is nice, but remember the skill line passives - it restores a lot of stam too!

    Cloak - learn to use this in battle instead of dodge rolling as much. It’s pretty much the only thing you need your magic pool for. Successful stamblading has a lot to do with positioning yourself. I learned to stand outside of minor damage areas (AOEs, etc) so that I can use my cloak for a full 2 second dodge and repositioning. While your stam Sorc faces everyone head on, stamblades are more about maneuvering behind enemies and continually attacking them more from their flanks.


    Your CPs shouldn’t be a huge worry. You’ll get about 80% of the power a max cp player gets. Check out alcast’s guides...he always has half CP setups. Just remember he does trials...you can downgrade some of the items he invests heavily in like dodge roll cost reduction in lieu of some other stuff.
  • leekirlewb16_ESO
    Why don't you just put the stam sorc gear on the nightblade and use that and see if you enjoy it in better gear before committing to it?
  • Saccarius
    Saccarius
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    Why don't you just put the stam sorc gear on the nightblade and use that and see if you enjoy it in better gear before committing to it?

    Huh? I'm already committed unless ZOS decides they want to allow class change tokens.

    Anyway I've got a pretty tanky setup going thanks to the suggestions in this thread that didn't cost an arm and a leg. Damage is pretty cr-p but I can solo WBs and Group Events.

    Still never making a Nightblade again. My issue is it's supposed to be the rogue class but all the best skills don't have stam morphs forcing you to either run around with a staff or rely mainly on weapon skills and universal skill lines that make it feel so samey.
    saccarius | PC | EU
    Almost master crafter
    Altoholic and decorating neophyte.
    Say hello, I'll say hello back.
    Gaymer
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