Let’s take a look at the new ability for Guardians!
Force Clarity - Converts all Force Clarity ability charges into stacks to buff your next attack by 25%.
Let’s take a look at the new ability for Guardians!
Force Clarity - Converts all Force Clarity ability charges into stacks to buff your next attack by 25%. Each attack consumes one stack. Force Clarity has 4 ability charges and regenerates 1 charge every 30 seconds.
Alongside a new ability, Guardians will receive a bevy of Set Bonuses and Tactical items. Set Bonuses are extra effects players can get for equipping a certain armor set. For instance, wearing two, four, or six pieces of a set will grant players progressively more powerful boosts. These can be in the form of increased ability potency or an added effect.
Tacticals are slightly different from Set Bonuses. While Tacticals also change how some abilities function, they come in the form of a new gear type. They don’t have actual stats on them like Power, Mastery, or Critical Rating; instead, they augment how an ability will function. Let’s look at some examples of how a Set Bonus and Tactical combination can alter the gameplay of the three Guardian Disciplines: Defense, Vigilance, and Focus.
“The great protector among Jedi Knights, the Defense Guardian is able to withstand even the most brutal assaults, and can give as good as they take. Even while dealing powerful blows, the Defense Guardian can reduce the impact of any attacks that come their way, making them key participants at the front line of any battle.”
The more enemies a tank can manage at once, the faster they can get through a Flashpoint. The balancing act is about getting right up to the line of “too much to handle”: get too ambitious and pull too much, the group may wipe, turning time saved into time lost. To help push that threshold, our Defense Guardian has chosen a Set Bonus and tactical combination that increases their survivability the more enemies they fight.
Set Bonus: "Lord of Pain"
(2 Piece Bonus) +2% Armor
(4 Piece Bonus) Challenging Call’s cooldown is reduced by 5 seconds.
(6 Piece Bonus) Challenging Call increases your damage reduction by 5% for each enemy you hit. This effect lasts 10 seconds.
Tactical: "Leviathan’s Hide"
Guardian Slash generates stacks of Crushing Defense for every enemy it hits, increasing your damage reduction by 2.5% per stack for 10 seconds.
Ready to lead their group through the Flashpoint, our Defense Guardian starts pulling enemy packs left and right--sometimes multiple packs at once. In order to build enough threat on all eight of the enemies and ensure the damage classes are free to go wild, our Guardian uses Challenging Call. Not only does this taunt every enemy nearby, but thanks to the “Lord of Pain” Set Bonus, our Guardian gains a 5% damage reduction per enemy hit. That’s a 40% reduction in total!
To make sure this ambitious plan doesn’t backfire, our Guardian uses Warding Strike, which grants a 3% damage reduction and enables Guardian Slash to hit up to seven additional enemies. This is where the “Leviathan’s Hide” Tactical comes in handy: instead of dealing the usual damage, Guardian Slash will now generate a Crushing Defense stackable buff that increases damage reduction by 2.5% for every enemy it hits. With the 20% generated from Guardian Slash, combined with the 40% generated from Challenging Call, and the final 3% from Warding Strike; this brings our Guardian’s damage reduction grand total to 63%! Our Guardian can pull enemies to their heart's content without feeling overrun.
“Operating through a disciplined state of enlightened focus, the Vigilance Guardian defends by providing would-be attackers with a torrential offense. The Vigilance Guardian enters the fray nimble and alert, unleashing a whirlwind of lightsaber and Force attacks that leaves any adversaries wondering what just happened-if they’re still conscious.”
PvP matches often result in a player facing down an enemy in a one-on-one battle. Every advantage is necessary to be the last one standing, and our clever Vigilance Guardian has found a Set Bonus and Tactical combination that will tip the scales in their favor.
Set Bonus: "Flawless Riposte"
(2 Piece Bonus) +2% Mastery
(4 Piece Bonus) Riposte has no cooldown.
(6 Piece Bonus) Taking damage during Endure grants Retaliator stacks, increasing the damage of your next Riposte by 10% per stack.
Tactical: "A Vicious Cycle"
Whirling Blade triggers a Riposte that deals 30% more damage.
Our Vigilance Guardian is facing off against an enemy, and both players are the last of their teams. As the fight continues, both players are pretty low on health--right around 30%--a perfect setting for our Vigilance Guardian to shine. To play it safe, our Guardian uses Endure to take advantage of the “Flawless Riposte” Set Bonus. Endure increases their maximum health by 30% for a brief amount of time, but their Set Bonus adds an offensive twist. Each time our Guardian takes damage while under the effect of Endure, they gain a Retaliator stack, which increases the damage of their next Riposte by 10% per stack! A perfect setup for capitalizing on the “A Vicious Cycle” Tactical.
Typically, Riposte is usable after successfully defending against a melee or ranged attack, or after one of your melee attacks are parried, dodged, or misses, but “A Vicious Cycle” changes that! Since the enemy is below 30% health, our Guardian uses Whirling Blade, which activates Riposte additional damage boost! Combining Whirling Blade with the stacking capabilities of the Set Bonus gives our Guardian the necessary edge over their opponent.
“The ways of the Force can reveal themselves to a Jedi Knight through intense concentration and, most importantly, focus. The Focus Guardian uses debilitating bursts of lightsaber strikes and Force powers to exhaust their foes, crushing any hopes they had of mounting an effective offense.”
There is a wide variety of combinations for Set Bonuses and Tacticals; some augment the rotations of abilities, while others offer more passive benefits. This raises a question for our Focus Guardian: is it possible to forge a combination that offers both a passive and active change to their abilities? Let's find out!
Set Bonus: "Fearless Descent"
(2 Piece Bonus) +2% Critical Rating
(4 Piece Bonus) Whenever you gain or use a Force Clarity ability charge while in combat, your damage is increased by 10% for 10 seconds.
(6 Piece Bonus) Dealing damage has a 10% chance to build a Force Clarity charge. Can only occur once every 10 seconds.
Tactical: "Joiner’s Pressure"
Activating Force Push on a target affected by Force Exhaustion grants Joiner's Pressure, increasing your damage dealt by 20% for 10 seconds.
Our Focus Guardian and their Veteran Mode Flashpoint group is made up entirely of damage dealers. Their goal is to burn through the Flashpoint as quickly as possible, and they’ve already encountered a boss! Our Guardian uses their new ability, Force Clarity; not only do they gain a damage increase to the next four single-target melee attacks, but the “Fearless Descent” Set Bonus also grants a secondary damage boost! This Set Bonus’s perk will passively occur throughout the rest of the encounter, providing our Guardian with a damage increase across the board.
Capitalizing on their damage potency, our Guardian combos into Force Exhaustion and Force Push. While most Focus Guardian would use Force Exhaustion against a boss, Force Push isn’t an ability typically used in this situation. But using Force Push now triggers the “Joiner’s Pressure” Tactical, giving our Guardian an additional 20% damage boost! Our Guardian is now poised to do a drastic amount of increased damage, making short work of the boss.
We’ve revealed the ability charge, discussed Set Bonuses and Tactical items, and painted a picture of how these two systems merge together to augment different styles of gameplay for Juggernauts and Guardians. These Set Bonuses and Tacticals are a small sample of what players can expect in ‘Onslaught.’ With that, all Advanced Classes have been discussed in our “Day In The Life Of” series!