Nature's Bounty - Warden Tank/DPS Hybrid PVE Build

Written guide updated for The Lost Depths DLC: Q3 2022

This is the new PVE tank build for the Warden class. He is built to do everything a tank should be able to do…It can taunt, hold agro, survive, control the enemy in mass numbers, heal, stun, immobilize, buff the group if needed with warhorns, and protect them with shields and protection buffs (including a group resistance buff)… BUT with a MASSIVE twist!

The tank has the usual traditional traits, high health, high magicka recovery (for buffs and/or application of magicka costing skills) but of course, you must heavy attack for sustain occasionally so be sure you do that between mechanics.

The high magicka recovery is primarily to keep up the vital warden buffs and have the freedom to throw out crowd control AND a bit of damage over time (usually that is not important on a tank but this one IS). However, we utilize our weapon trait and passive bonuses to allow recovery while we cannot recover normally! With the ice staff, you BLOCK with the magicka bar, so recovery is no good unless you are not blocking. BUT we allow ourselves to take advantage of a return glyph on the back bar along with the betty netch to constantly gain back resources even while blocking. IF you heavy attack between mechanics too, this is very easy to manage. Sustain is only an issue if you do too much spamming and not enough focusing on what you are doing!

Our healing passives/buffs grant minor toughness to whoever is healed by you (10% max HP) and also our ground-based ice attacks are amazing for pinning adds/mobs on the spot to control them while you get all the agro.

The main method of tanking is similar to other tanks and that is that you heavy attack for sustain and taunt of course to keep agro, while keeping a close eye on your buffs. Heavy attacks are VITAL but of course, they do come with a price. While heavy attacking, your shield is DOWN, so you take full damage. With this in mind, you must TIME your attacks. The fact you are taking more damage than if you were blocking means you need more health to take the punch to the face, hence why we have so much HP…BUT the trick with timing is, you MUST block the heavy attacks from a boss. Heavy attack through normal passive attacks etc and then block anything that would one-shot, knockdown, count as a heavy, etc.

The main abilities we use to tank, debuff, etc. on this build are generally damage over time abilities with a major bonus to them on top. They all apply small damage over time per ability BUT, the combination of them all adds a huge amount of damage reduction, crowd control and each tick from EACH dot pushes Azureblight to explode!  With update 32 and the Deadlands DLC Azureblight Reaper is so much STRONGER because ALL proc sets based on spell and weapon damage can now CRIT!

Every tick of damage adds a stack…when you reach 20, the target explodes in damage hitting surrounding targets. And this can happen PER enemy! That’s right, you are creating AOE BOMBS! (demonstrated towards the end of the video)… All you have to do, is stack the adds…who better to do that than the TANK?

With this particular variation of the build we have finally introduced a monster set since the “procs don’t proc procs” rule has been adapted. Generally speaking, a proc condition cannot fire another one, however, a proc condition that fires a damage over time ability, while it could not FIRE azure blight, COULD in fact still contribute to the stacks. That is no longer the case. NOW no proc damage/application/rule set whatsoever will contribute to the stacks. So we dumped the arena weapons and optimized it with something even better! We are now using the Baron monster set allowing for 4 ultimate every time we fire of up to 3 status effects. With us having MASSIVE status activation because of our setup and charged traits (plus cp choices etc) we actually can almost guarantee full ulti control.

Also while stacked with Arkasis we can basically build permafrost (or warhorn) 2x faster than anyone else in the game! It is NUTS! And if we were to use trees on our back bar? (Warden healing ultimate see below) we can basically have almost 100% uptime on it!

Some valuable points for the build:-

  • Your taunt counts also as an immobilization AND provides MAJOR maim (10% reduction to damage from target).

  • Heavy attack to keep your magicka up AND a nice damage shield!

  • Insanely HIGH uptime on Minor Brittle (10% critical damage taken for applying chilled)

  • Block the big stuff and time your heavies between mechanics if need be.

  • Really fast ultimate regeneration to fire off those buffs, bonuses, and protection skills 2x faster than anyone else!

  • Keep your buffs up. Your buffs protect you, the group, AND your heals from these keep up minor toughness, 10% max hps.

  • Almost caped resists with no effort

  • Lots of CC with the ground-based ice AOEs which immobilize and stun normal enemies and apply minor main reducing their damage done.

  • ALL of your damage over time effects that PUSH for cc, reduction to damage, and all-around tanking roles for this build, ADD to the Azureblight proc which can DEVASTATE enemies with damage!

  • MINOR BRITTLE! – Very simple. IF you are HOLDING an ICE STAFF…when you apply a CHILLED status effect. You will affect the target with Minor Brittle, causing all crit damage on that target to be 10% stronger!

    This is VITAL!. You can NOT apply minor brittle UNLESS you apply CHILLED status effects while HOLDING a staff (ice staff) on your current active bar.

    ^^^ pay very close attention to this.

    All ice damage you do from your whole build can apply chilled. With 200% more chance with winter’s embrace skills and 100% more chance with destruction staff skills IF HOLDING an ice staff at the time, 480% chance from our trait, and 60% from champion points!.

    We can have 100% uptime on minor brittle boosting your entire group’s DPS!

  • Taunt it, hold it…and you will boost your group AND make explosions all at once! Making this one of the MOST desirable tanks available for control, damage mitigation, DPS boosting, damage application itself, and overall toughness all in one package 😉

Fashion First!

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As demonstrated in the video, our fabulous setup and dress choice for this character is as follows:

Head: Medium Wayward Guardian
Chest: Heavy Wayward Guardian
Shoulders: Heavy Silken Ring
Legs: Heavy Wayward Guardian
Hands: Heavy Worm Cult
Belt: Heavy Wayward Guardian 
Feet: Heavy Thorn Legion
Front Staff: Ebonshadow
Back Staff: Wayward Guardian

       The two colors we are using are Void Pitch and Nightblade’s Indigo

Skills

TIP: Hover over the skills to see their effects.

Champion Points 2.0

The NEW Champion Points 2.0 introduced in the Q1 2021 DLC: Flames Of Ambition is quite possibly the BIGGEST change/addition to The Elder Scrolls Online since One Tamriel! And these were further altered in the Blackwood Chapter, giving us a lower base for capping out some of the essentials and also adding some more slotables!

Before it was a case of “I have limited points as a CP, so HOW should I spend them”? Now that is NOT the case as SUCH! Now, it is a case of, buy ALL the things, but which SLOTABLES should you take?

Everything before was a passive bonus with huge diminished returns, awkward calculations, and was messy to all players for the most part. The new system underlines NO diminished returns, no majorly confusing passives, and the ability to buy EVERY single passive available for tanking, DPS, and healing on the SAME character with enough points to spare for buying slotables. Being able to slot 4x special slotables from each tree when there is an abundance of them means you are only limited by your CHOICES, not by your CP.

Buy all the passives, CHOOSE which slotables to take vs the situation, and the rest of the points are spare. Or are they? Well here is the crunch…Once you go over 1800ish (depending on slotable choices, some are more expensive in the Craft tree) you basically have every single passive available PLUS 4 slotables per tree…

If you JUST wanted to focus on combat alone (all red and blue passives and 4 slotables for each one) you only actually need around 1600cp to be completely maxed in those areas. And if you wanted to go FULL glass cannon, only really focusing on one damage type you can achieve your max potential for that as low as 900 or so! You won’t have any resistances or healing bonuses from the Warfare (blue) tree doing this, but you can at least cap out the hard-hitting stuff, right? And this is considering slotables too so there is no harm in actually deliberately specing for a couple of damage resistance slotables instead even at THIS stage.

For tanking it is even easier! Push for your slotables and stack your resistance passives and it is game over! The rest are just a bonus!

So what’s next? Well, if you have higher champion points you can buy more slotables and switch stuff per situation as and when needed. If you don’t, then if you want to swap it will cost you gold for respecing. So in a nutshell, 1650-1800 (depending on build) is you’re pretty much done! Anything else is convenient due to not needing to spend gold swapping things you already have access to! How cool is that?

SLOTABLES!

No matter what, THESE are the most important parts of the Champion Points 2.0 system. So this is your main FIRST goal when pushing for the build. You need to slot these even if they are not max level. However, there are swap-outs for situations as explained in the video.

BLUE (Warfare) are important for resistance, heals, and damage. Red (Fitness) are important for resources, health, and Crowd Control counters. Green (Craft) are literally quality of life! (aka your choice so not THAT important for combat).

It doesn’t matter what level you are at anymore, you can play ALL content regardless of your champion points level because during Flames of Ambition all players/characters had their base stats improved to make everyone somewhat more balanced at lower levels.

However, as mentioned above, the slotables are your main goal. Unlock the prerequisite passives to unlock access to your slotables if there are any…fill them up, and then just grab the remaining passives as you go.

300, 600, 900 champion points are not really important as checkpoints anymore for optimization. Just fill as you go, because ALL characters can have ALL passives with NO negative effects unlike before!

What should I aim for with this build?

  • Bulwark
  • Duelist’s Rebuff
  • Arcane Supremacy
  • Ironclad


Maximizing the main focus of the build making it REALLY tough early on so be sure to go for those slotables asap.

  • Rationer
  • Liquid Efficiency
  • Treasure Hunter
  • Steed’s Blessing

These really are up to you but these are most useful IN content for loot and movement if not in combat.
What you do with this tree is NOT make or break for mechanics or combat in general just quality of life.

  • Boundless Vitality
  • Fortified
  • Peace of Mind
  • Rejuvenation

     

Pushing for armor and health bonuses alongside high recovery. You can of course switch to survival instincts instead if you don’t want the Peace of Mind bonus but that is up to you.

The video below explains how the changes work in more detail. Of course, over time, additions will be and have already been made to the system but the main BASE of it is the same.

Poisons, Potions, & Food

Potions really are up to you but they DO offer recovery/sustain while giving a burst of stamina/mag/health back at the same time depending on the choice of potion. I would highly recommend using Tripots if you can afford them BUT you can of course use trash magicka pots depending on how comfortable you are with your resources.

Tri-pots:  
Columbine + Mountain Flower + Bugloss + Lorkhan’s Tears

Food:  
Max health and max Magicka Food
         Minstral Banana-Bunny  Hash – Small game(1) + Bananas(2) + Seasoning(3)
         Melon-Baked Parmesan Pork – White Meat(1) + Melon(2) + Cheese(3)
         Solitude Salmon-Millet Soup – Fish(1) + Tomato(2) + Millet(3)

If you would like to make your own potions, I now have a fully functioning potion maker on the website. Here you can TEST any combination of potion or poison you like and check the outcome without having to know the combinations in-game! Check here for the App, working on Android and IOS – Potion Maker

Gear Setup

Below is a chart showing the overall gear set-up, noting the optimal set requirements in terms of weight, enchants & traits!

We are using the Lover Mundus stone with but that is IF you want a tiny bit more of a push to your damage. However, if you favor more maximum magicka you can go with the Mage, and if you want more health you can go with the Lord!  All 64 Attribute points go into Health.

We are a Breton but other races are also usable. Orc, Nord, High Elf, Argonian, or Imperial are other good choices BUT you will have to find the other missing resistance in your champion points (if using a race with no resists) and/or trait changes which WILL affect the build overall.

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SlotGear SetWeightTraitEnchantment
HeadBaron Zaudrus / NunatakHeavyReinforcedHealth / Magicka
ShouldersBaron Zaudrus / NunatakHeavySturdyHealth
ChestLeeching Plate / Arkasis GeniusHeavyReinforcedHealth / Magicka
WaistLeeching Plate / Arkasis GeniusHeavySturdyHealth
HandsLeeching Plate / Arkasis GeniusHeavySturdyHealth
LegsLeeching Plate / Arkasis GeniusHeavySturdyHealth
FeetLeeching Plate / Arkasis GeniusHeavySturdyHealth
Ring 1Azureblight ReaperJewelryHealthySpell Damage / Reduce Spell Cost
Ring 2Azureblight ReaperJewelryArcane/infusedReduce Spell Cost / Reduce Potion Cooldown
NecklaceAzureblight ReaperJewelryArcane/infusedReduce Spell Cost / Reduce Potion Cooldown
Weapon 1Azureblight ReaperIce StaffChargedWeapon & Spell Dmg/ Poisons
Weapon 2Azureblight ReaperIce StaffInfusedAbsorb Magicka

Note: If you are using the Arkasis version you must have the Potion Cool down Reduction + infused jewellery setup to allow for 29 second cool downs. Note also that you musty ONLY fire a potion every 30seconds. SO be sure to save one second between re-activation in order to control the set!

If using the Leeching version, go all reduction to cost for spells unless you are comfortable adding the spell damage glyph instead.

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