Sting - Stamina Nightblade PVE Build

Finally! A Stamblade for the channel. After popular demand and my own with holding of the build until i was sure balancing was in a fairly safe place (so we didn’t have to constantly change the build so much) it is here!

Nightblades can be considered quite “difficult” to use by most due to their awkward timing of some of their skills and one MAJOR skill alteration…Spectral bow. The spectral bow is a secondary affect fired by grim focus and it’s morphs and allows you a half priced version of the skill where you consume 5 stacks of resistance in return for a single target HIGH DAMAGE hit, plus a heal if you are close enough (7 meters or less).
This skill is available via hitting the target with light and heavy attacks to stack up 5 hits, and then it can be used.
For many out there, the application of this skill can be somewhat random and confusing. Each light attack applies ONE stack of the ticks and each heavy attack applies TWO ticks…so as long as you reach 5, you can fire it. Rotations generally using this skill can be very confusing and requires you to either count/calculate your lights and heavies, OR (if you are on pc) rely on an add on to let you know when it is ready.

In THIS video/build however it is calculated for you so that you are guaranteed 2 shots of the bow every front bar rotation so long as you do the rotation correctly without ANY ad-dons and ANY counting or buff tracking at all! The purpose of the rotation was not only to make the damage high but also to apply relevant buffs and up times guaranteed with out any complications that some other setups have. So ease of use is a massive contributing factor to this setup at the SAME time as hitting some ridiculously high damage.

Everything about the build has been carefully constructed so that survival, sustain, buff up times, damage application and sets bonuses and procs are ALL equally considered throughout. This may take a little time to master, but if you follow it from start to finish, you will NOT be disappointed!

Some other things to consider with this build are of course base passives which are heavily taken advantage of inside the build layout and the rotation combined.

First of all leeching strikes used every rotation gives us a guaranteed additional 2 ultimate per back bar rotation, meaning we can build for our ultimate faster. Fighters guild passives build ultimate also if killing undead Daedra and werewolves, and simply taking a potion (which we will do every 45 seconds) will give us 20 ultimate every time we do so, meaning we can reuse our cheap 70 point cost ultimate VERY often to keep up high damage on the individual we are focusing on.

Our sustain and damage output combined are balanced due to heavy attacks being deliberately put into the rotation. Careful placement of the heavy attacks in the rotation’s design allow for us to keep up our stamina, while constantly attacking and also applying our spectral bow more efficiently.

Our survival is also in our passives, if we hit with surprise attack we actually GAIN major resolve and major ward, that’s right we BUFF our resists by HITTING with a set skill. Play aggressive! We also can take full advantage of deadly cloak meaning all aoe damage incoming is reduced by 25% AND we can keep full uptime on our infused weapon glyphs no matter what bar we are on. Not to mention of course our killers blade (execute skill) can actually heal us when killing enemies!

Key thing about all to remember is KEEP your rotation going. On a target skeleton or a low health boss (3-6mil) you can probably get away with spamming your execute at low health. But LONG fights you cannot simply do this. You will run out of juice and all of your passive damage and buffs will fall off. You MUST keep up your rotation and you MUST keep your dots and buffs up at all times especially in trials.
“Execute” phase is not your time to spam one button…it is your time to ALTER to an “execute rotation” and replace your surprise attack with killers blade and keep doing what you are doing!
NOTE: during Execute be sure to occasionally throw in a surprise attack per rotation if you are in high incoming damage situations so that you can keep up your major ward and major resolve resistance buff if you need to.

  • High single target damage output especially at low hp (25% or less)

  • High survival, and tankier resists without the need to slot an additional buff!

  • Ability to heal from kills!

  • High ultimate usage!

  • Controlled rotation covering sustain AND damage output combined

  • Full use of class passives also allowing you of course to buff the group with minor savagery

  • Fast paced rotation made simple!


Dual Wield

1) Rending Slashes/deadly cloak
2) Barbed Trap
3) Grim Focus
4) Surprise Attack
5) Killer’s Blade
Ultimate – Flawless Dawnbreaker


1) Ring Of preservation/resolving vigor
2) Poison Injection
3) Consuming Trap
4) Dark Shade/leeching strikes
5) Arrow Barrage
Ultimate – Incapacitating Strike

Champion points

  • 51 Thaumaturge
  • 34 Piercing
  • 66 Master at Arms
  • 9 Physical Weapons Expert
  • 61 Precise Strikes
  • 49 Mighty
  • 75 Tenacity
  • 75 Mooncalf
  • 44 Warlord
  • 72 Tumbling
  • 4 Shadow Ward
  • 19 Quick recovery
  • 64 Hardy
  • 64 Elemental defender
  • 51 Thick skinned
  • 72 Ironclad

Lower Champion Points

If you are lower than maximum champion points do NOT worry! This will work no matter what and of course the more cps you get the more effective it will be, however some hints on what to do at lower cps. I get questions about 300cps, 401 cps, 12 cps? we could be here all day but here are somethings i personally would recommend to prioritize in your damage areas..

Firstly be sure to get 30 points into Mighty, this will allow you access to the 9% critical chance passive and give you a good base for physical/poison/disease damage across the board. Then get 40 points into Thaumaturge to start getting that dot bonus for your skills bonus before then pushing for master at arms and physical weapons expert. . After that push for piercing while evening out your cps until you hit maximum.

As far as the resists are concerned (red trees) get 15 points into quick recovery asap for the res bonus passive and then from there BALANCE your resists between hardy, elemental defender and thick skinned until you have a good even base and just drip them in boosting it as you go until you are maxed.

For the green trees be sure to spread tenacity and mooncalf as evenly as possibly and boost them both to 75, then after work on dodge roll costs (tumbling) and break free costs (warlord).


Note your first rotation will be winding up the bow procs, the rotation below is considered as something you should repeat after your FIRST one is in full swing.

Front bar: Light Attack, Spectral Bow, Light Attack, Surprise Attack x3!, Light Attack, Rending Slashes, Light Attack, (slight delay) Spectral Bow, Light Attack, Barbed Trap, Weapon Swap.

NOTE: The light attack + spectral bow needs to have a slight delay in order to make the light attack count as the 5th light. IF you are having issues with this, do 4x surprise attacks instead and it will always be ready. Not as efficient, but much easier when practicing. Explained in the video)

Back Bar: Light Attack, Arrow Barrage, Light Attack, Poison Injection, Light Attack, Dark Shade, Light Attack, Consuming Trap, Weapon Swap…

Repeat over and over and over!

During Execute: Replace your Surprise Attack ability with Killer’s Blade (25% health and under) and do not fire your bow anymore to keep up the 10% damage mitigation bonus.

Remember 1 light attack counts for one bow proc, 1x heavy attack counts for 2! IF you are struggling with sustain…Replace 2x light attack, surprise attack with 1x heavy attack surprise attack. This will keep your timing and rotation on point along side of your sustain IF you are struggling!

Poisons, Potions & Food

Potions really are up to you but they DO offer a crit chance bonus AND a 20% increase to your weapon damage and recovery while give a burst of stamina back at the same time.

Food is very simple, the highest level food you can consume with 2 stats only, MAX health and MAX stamina. There are 3 variations of recipes but all are the same in the stats they give so your choice which one you use.

Poison – Alkahest + Nirnroot + Nightshade + Fleshfly Larvae

Weapon Power potions – Dragonthorn + Blessed Thistle + wormwood + Lorkhan’s​ Tears

Recovery Food
Artaeum Takeaway Broth – fish(20) + Torchbug Thorax(5) + Powdered Mother Of Pearl (5)
Dubious Camoran Throne – White meat(1) + Beetle Scuttle(1) + Insect Parts(1) + Guts(1)

Flat food
Sticky Pork And Radish Noodles – White Meat(1) + Radish(2) + Flour(3)
Garlic Cod with Potato Crust – Fish(1) + Potato(2) + Garlic(3)
Braised Rabbit with Spring Vegetables – Small Game(1) + Greens(2) + Seasoning(3)

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 Shadow mundus stone. All 64 points are into stamina!

We are an Orc but other races are also usable. Redguard, Woodelf or Imperial are good substitutes, also some people like the khajiit, or dark elf.

Optimal Setup

sting, nightblade, stamblade

Basic Setup

A VERY strong set to use instead of Relequen if you have a trial/group with around 3-4+ synergies active at any one time is Alkosh! Just remember to aim the synergies in the direction of the desired target .

If you do not have access to trials loot, other good options are defiler, Hundings rage, Briarheart, Red mountain and Pillar of nirn. All of which will do less  overall but WILL perform very well indeed in place of the more optimal set.

Gear Locations

Kra’ghFungal Grotto I
Arms Of Relequen
Venomous Smite
Western Skyrim

Mechanical Acuity
– Crafted
New Moon Acolyte – 9 Trait Crafted Set
SeleneSelene’s Web