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ESO DPS Tier List

DPS (damage per second) is critical to your success in ESO, especially if you're playing solo. Here are the best builds for DPS.
Best DPS in ESO | Image by Bethesda Softworks
Best DPS in ESO | Image by Bethesda Softworks

In ESO, DPS characters can make or break a group or solo mission. If you want to progress smoothly through the story and take on as many side quests as you like, it’s critical to ensure you have a strong DPS build, especially if you have selected a Magika-oriented character.

While people tend to think of tier lists as a tool for min-maxers (and they can be), in ESO, your enjoyment of the game can really depend upon your abilities in combat. This is why a ESO DPS tier list is recommended even for a new player: not having to worry as much about your build will free up you ability to enjoy the open world experience of ESO.

DPS is crucial to taking out fast-flying enemies in ESO | Image by Bethesda Softworks

S-Tier Builds for ESO DPS

The Magicka Sorcerer comes first as DPS class is easy to play. This is due to being fully devoted to ranged attacks, but having a strong defense (shield). In case of emergency, you can always use Critical Surge, which provides rapid healing and heavier spell damage. Simple, elegant, and efficient, this is the recommended choice for new players. You also get pets/companions to help you along, with the Atronach being the most useful in solo play. Plus, if you want to look like Thor, you can head down the Storm Calling tree — don’t forget to balance it with Daedric Summoning to ensure you can get some powerful pets, though.

The Stamina Nightblade is more precise, but if you’re good at rotating skills and timing your shots, you can do a lot of consistent damage with this class. It’s ideal for solo players thanks to the healing abilities built in, and it’s quick to get set up on a path you can execute to dive into game content at a rapid pace. The Killer’s Blades is essential. If you’re hoping to go with a Stamina class, this is the one. You’ll have to stay sharp and be precise, as your range isn’t what it would be with the Magicka Sorcerer.

If you’re all about healing yourself and others in your party, consider the Magicka Templar. This Class has a heavy damage output, and most of the abilities are sustainable. While this class has cool-down abilities like anything else, there are enough fast ones that it’s easier to keep your rotation strong. Puncturing Sweeps is the best skill to take, as you can do damage while you heal simultaneously.

Characters walk in a regal building in ESO | Image by Bethesda Softworks
Characters walk in a regal building in ESO | Image by Bethesda Softworks

A-Tier Builds for ESO DPS

The Magicka Nightblade makes the A-Tier because this class lets you keep your distance thanks to its range. It’s technically the highest damage-dealing Class and comes with a self-heal ability, too. However, it’s not as easy to use or spec as the S-Tier builds; this might make a good third or fourth character after you know how to play the game well enough.

For playing in a group, you can’t beat the Magicka Necromancer for ESO DPS. This is due to their Glacial Colossus ability, which gives everyone a 10 percent damage bonus, often long enough to last an entire instance! They also have a couple of abilities that siphon power from enemies (return health to you after you do damage to a living being). Another reason to run the Magicka Necromancer in group combat? You can resurrect as many as three players of your party when you have Reanimate.

B-Tier Builds for ESO DPS

The Magicka Warden makes the B-Tier builds for ESO DPS tier list because of how balanced it is. The balance includes healing abilities, medium range, decent damage, and mobility, the last of which is super important for team play. You also get Deep Fissure, which is sure to deal some impactful area of effect (AoE) damage to your enemies.

Your Stamina Templar is ideal if you like to spam your attacks. More focused on AoE and damage over time (DoT) these can be challenging to play solo but valuable in a group setting. If you like farming items or focusing on hunting achievements, this is a good class to power you through.

C-Tier Build for ESO DPS

The Stamina Necromancer is fascinating because you get to use minions for dealing damage, but you don’t get to micromanage the AI and they have minds of their own. You have to constantly summon them and pull them back into battle when they veer off course, which is pretty frustrating. Blighted Blastbones is fundamental to get ASAP for this Class if you want to succeed… but overall you’ll spend most of the time herding minions.

D-Tier Builds for ESO DPS

Your Magicka Dragonknight is interesting — you have to do your damage in melee range to make it effective. This can be challenging for those of us used to playing rangers and sorcerers in a variety of RPGs. You’ve got to be good at dancing around enemies to play this class effectively, but if you can, it’s useful in solo play.

Similarly, the Stamina Warden is solid but not remarkable. It’s balanced and focused on Player vs. Environment (PvE), or solo play, and has a fair amount of debuffs.

F-Tier Build for ESO DPS

The Stamina Sorcerer isn’t as awesome as it sounds. It’s a DPS Class, but its skills don’t hold up to the Class promise. You have to do close range combat, rely too much on pets, and remain heavily dependent on the abilities of the weapons you carry.

Whatever you choose to play in ESO, make sure you choose something that works well with your play style (group, solo, story-focused, or combat-oriented). There’s nothing more frustrating in ESO than being stranded solo while playing the wrong Class for the situation, so choose something either extremely powerful or very versatile to ensure success, especially in solo situations.


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