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Elder Scrolls Online Destro PVE DPS Build for Dragonknight (Guide)

Player Versus Environment Build: The Devo DK

Difficulty/skill needed: Hard, requires a lot of focus on keeping dots of and properly medium weaving in order to pull top DPS. A sloppy rotation can pull decent dps with this build but will be 5k+ DPS behind a perfect rotation.

Gear dependence: High, Requires 3 different sets that need to be farmed in different locations and all are a percent chance to drop and an even lower percent chance to drop in the correct trait.

Gear, Skills, Mundus and Champion Points


Overwhelming and Kena/Nerien’eth: Armor sets: 4 x Overwhelming + 3 x Willpower + 2 x Nerien’eth or Kena and 2 x Torug’s Pact

In terms of Weights and Traits in the table below you can see what this build is running

The torugs pact chest can be any weight depending on whether or not your undaunted head and shoulders are medium and heavy or one of those and light. Also you can swap out the torugs piece for any of the overwhelming pieces depending on what you have. So if you have 4 pieces of overwhelming and are missing the boots then run the 4 pieces you have and make torugs boots in the same trait that the overwhelming boots would have been. Nirn is better on the bar 1 staff than precise still because most the bosses you are going to run into have pretty high spell resist and precise on the bar 2 staff because its mainly for AoE and most the AoE situations the mobs have little to no resist and will probably be close to fully penetrated just from light armor and champion points.

Scathing Double Destro: Armor sets: 5 x Scathing Mage + 3 x Willpower + 2 x Nerien’eth or Kena + 1 x random v16 staff

This is going to be better for players that are running high crit like 65%+. If you have low crit then scathing mage won’t proc enough for it to be losing the 3 spell damage bonuses from 4 over and 2 torugs. Its likely going to end up players run whatever gear sets they get first but later on we will see minmaxing between the 2 different sets. The traits and enchants are the same as above except now you need a medium and heavy helmet because you dont have that extra crafted piece of armor. Also supposedly this set is now proccing on DoTs unlike in the pts. If that is true it is going to be hands down the way to go. Now we just need those v16 master staves and we got some perfect builds going.

Scathing Destro/2h: Armor sets: 5 x Scathing Mage + 3 x Willpower + 2 x Nerien’eth or Kena + 1 x random v16 staff + 1 x Random v16 2h

We are running the 2h on the back bar with our main dots which are engulfing, embers, and eruption so that our dots can tick harder from the boosted spell damage. You want the 2h to be nirn since you are going to b have a lot of your single target dps coming from that bar and not very much AoE unlike the double destro setup which the back bar was pretty much only small dots and AoE where precise would be better than nirnhoned.


This build is currently using the thief mundus because it provides a 4.5% dps increase or so at base while apprentice was only giving me about a 3.8% dps increase. The more divines you have the wider the gap is between the 2 munduses. Running 5 or 6 pieces of divines will get you close to a 7% dps increase from running thief over just base no mundus dps.


Trials with double destro build

Note: you should be using Flames of Oblivion instead of Sea of Flames if you’re gonna be doing trials. For VDA Sea is still worth it but when it comes to single target DPS, FOO does more :).

Not much has changed in terms of bars for trials since 1.6. The main change is the nerf to molten armaments so we have to run something else. Trap beast is going to be the way to go if its working like it should be but many of the other crit modifiers in the game have been broken in the past so this one might be as well. If it is broke then I think i’ll end up running destructive clench there instead.

Bar 1: Flames of Oblivion, Engulfing flames, Burning embers, Molten whip, Inner light, Shooting star

Bar 2: Flames of Oblivion, Eruption, Destructive Clench, Fire ring, Inner light, Standard of might

This build used to have rearming trap with this setup when it gave minor force but since they took it away temporarily for them to fix the skill so that it doesnt 1 shot stuff anymore since it will be running destructive clench. If/when they add the minor force back into the skill, then you will be going to be swapping back to that.

Trials with Destro/2H

Bar 1: Flames of Oblivion, Fire ring, Destructive clench, Molten whip, Inner Light, Shooting star

Bar 2: Flames of Oblivion, Eruption, Engulfing Flames, Burning Embers, Inner Light, Standard of Might

This setup puts your main single target DPS dots on a bar that has a 2h equipped allowing for them to get the damage buff from the 2h therefore doing more damage. The only downside to this build is that you have to swap bars every 10s compared to every 18 if youre not running trap, however if you were running trap before it got temporarily nerfed then swapping bars every 10s compared to every 12 isnt that bad. In 1.6 we were swapping every 10s to keep molten armaments up anyway so it should feel pretty natural for most experienced DKs. This is going to end up being the top DPS setup but we will have to wait and see.


For single target. Swap out proximity detonation for rearming trap and draw essence for ele drain.

Bar 1: Structured Entropy, Engulfing flames, Burning embers, Molten whip, Flames of Oblivion, Shooting star

Bar 2: Proximity Detonation, Eruption, Draw essence, Fire ring, Flames of Oblivion, Standard of might


The Mage
  • 7x Spell Erosion
  • 3x Staff Expert
  • 40x Elf Born
  • 100x Elemental Expert
  • The Thief
  • 100x Magician
  • 40x Arcanist
  • 10x Tenacity
The Warrior
  • 10x Spell shield
  • 100x Hardy or ele defender
  • 40x Quick Recovery
For the mage champion points there is a cycle between spell erosion and elf born because of the way that elfborn it calculated. It has points that it will jump up and then the rest of the CP it does nothing instead of being linear where you get a little bit for each point you get a lot then nothing for the next couple then a lot again. So, put enough points in to hit one of those jumps then put the rest into spell erosion. When you get enough points to hit another jump, redo your CP and put the points into elfborn and then slowly start adding back into spell erosion for each additional CP you get.

This out in his sorcerer arithmagic thread and has the amount of CP that it jumps at listed there as well. Here is a link to his thread. The part about elfborn and spell erosion is at the bottom of the first page. The entire thread is a good read though if you have the time and want to know about the math behind a lot of the mechanics that we use.

For the thief points, this build have very little base regen so the extra 25% added onto that if you were to add in 100 points would only give you ~ 160 regen so stacking into that and magician evenly didnt seem worth it. And then the 10 pts into tenacity is for the rare occasion that you run out of magicka getting a little extra magicka back for each heavy attack doesnt hurt.

Then the warrior points change quite frequently depending on what im doing. In places like SO and ICP, stack into hardy to help reduce the main type of damage there. In places like AA and White-Gold I use all my points into ele defender since its mainly fire and lightning and stuff


For single target fights you want to start out on bar 2 and drop an eruption where the boss is going to move to, then do a full charged heavy attack as the boss is being pulled and walk towards the boss while charging it and animation cancel a fire ring.  Next do a medium attack weave and drop rearming trap.  Swap bars.  Then your rotation should look like: MA<EF, MA<BE, MA<MW x6, Swap, MA<FR, MA<RT, MA<Er, Swap, Rinse repeat until boss is dead.

If you are running Kena then every 6 seconds you will need to replace 2 medium weaves with a light attack weave.  If you are ever having a tough time sustaining with kena then just do medium weaving so that Kena doesnt proc until you have some resources back.

For dungeons the only thing to note is for AoE. Draw essence then 2 more casts whether its prox det or fire ring or whatever and doing this you have pretty much infinite sustain.

MA= Medium attack, EF=Engulfing Flames, BE=Burning Embers, MW= Molten Whip, FR= Fire ring, RT= Rearming Trap, Er=Eruption


We will still be using detect pots that have magicka return and major sorcery on them. This is because they still have not fixed regular spell pots to be used without triggering the global cooldown. It is necessary to use these pots on cooldown because they are our only source of major sorcery when running both flames of oblivion and inner light. It does not matter whether these pots are v10 or v15 I dont think since they both provide pretty much 100% up time. Only difference is going to be slightly less magicka return,

For food we are going to be using v15 blue magicka/health food. If you can’t acquire this then the v10 stuff will suffice but in order to truly minmax you’re going to want the v15 stuff since more magicka=more damage.


For Attributes you are going to want to run 64 points into magicka if possible. However, if you are uncomfortable running such low health if you’re running 2 kena then it is suggested putting a couple points into health until you reach around 18k. In most experienced groups that keep warhorn up the entire fight then you should be able to get away with low health as long as you know the mechanics and avoid them.


All parses are currently done with 4 martial, 2 valkyn, 2 torugs, 3 willpower as well as combat prayer.

The Adjucator



LOOK AT THAT VALKYN DPS!!!!!!!!!!! The mage only parse and it only hit the mage 9 times in 3:35 seconds and with over 1k dot ticks on the mage alone. Thats less than a 1% chance a second to make it proc. Just imagine if you can get nerieneth or kena.

Questions & Answers

OMFG Why no Valkyn!:

Valkyn has been nerfed several times in the past and with update 2.1 it pretty much had the nail put in the coffin. It had a 25% damage reduction on the tooltip and then on top of that it also seems to have had a stealth proc chance nerf. Where as before you could get 6 procs in 45s now in 1:10 you only get 4 so it seems they’ve cut the proc chance in half which is pretty crap.

How to get the gear?: 

Overwhelming surge set drops randomly from the bosses in White-Gold Tower. Scathing Mage drops randomly from the bosses in Imperial City Prison. Willpower drops randomly from the Imperial city trophy vaults. Molag Kena drops from the last boss in vet White-Gold tower and the shoulders drop from the undaunted dailies. Nerien’eth drops from the last boss of Crypt of Hearts vet and the shoulders drop from the undaunted dailies as well.

What can I run until I get the new gear? 

From my testing Sun works the best until you get your new gear. Running 5 sun, 2 torugs, 2 cyrodiil light and 2 nerieneth/kena will be your best bet until you get overwhelming/scathing and willpower. Even with sun it doesnt make valkyn worth running over the other 2 sets though.

Where’s the parses? 

They will be coming shortly once I start to run trials again and get the new gear.  Once you get all my v16 gear we will see DKs pulling 30k+ on manti, possibly close to 35k.

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Credits: The Magnus: Destro PVE DPS Build [2.1.X] Guide by asneakybanana