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Specter - Condi DPS

The community gave this build a rating, making it top-tier: Great

Focused on: Condition damage

Designed for: Raids and Fractals

Expansions required: End of Dragons builds

Difficulty:
Easy
This build was last updated on October 12, 2023 and is up to date for the June 25, 2024 patch.

Overview

A condition DPS build for Specter. Gaining a defensive shroud similar to Necromancer as well as a powerful ranged weapon in Scepter, Specter can feel much safer to play than other Thief specialisations. It deals great damage, which can be enhanced even further if it is able to pre-cast its venoms (particularly relevant in fractals). At the same time, it provides some incidental group boons whenever it Siphons and it always has access to powerful single-target barrier, enabling it to act as a support in emergencies.

As a torment-focused class, it prefers stationary targets, but the simple rotation and ability to deal almost all its damage from range means that it is able to maintain damage very easily even on mobile encounters.

As a Thief, it has excellent out-of-combat utility for speeding up fractals and raids.


Skill Bar

Scepter/Dagger
Utility


Weapon Variants

You can bring an offhand Pistol in addition to the dagger to have more CC available on swap. As entering and exiting Shadow Shroud counts as a weapon swap, you will still gain the benefits of Sigil of Superior Sigil of Doom and Quick Pockets.


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Specializations

  • If Bountiful Theft will be of no benefit, you can take Pressure Striking for a little bit more damage.
  • For a ~4% DPS loss, you can take Consume Shadows to offer some extra healing/barrier to your subgroup.


Equipment

Head
Viper
Shoulders
Viper
Chest
Viper
Hands
Viper
Legs
Viper
Feet
Viper
Backpiece
Viper
Accessory
Viper
Accessory
Viper
Amulet
Viper
Ring
Viper
Ring
Viper
Scepter
Viper
Sigil
Dagger
Viper
Sigil
Rune
x6
Infusion
x18
Relic
  • Relic of the Fractal should be higher single-target damage, but you will have to hit Thousand Needles off cooldown, as it is your only source of Bleeding Bleeding.
    • Alternatively, you could take Deadly Ambush.


Non-SotO Gear

Relic of the Aristocracy is the best relic for players that don't own Secrets of the Obscure, which necessitates switching some gear to Sinister stats Sinister stats:

Head
Viper
Shoulders
Sinister
Chest
Viper
Hands
Viper
Legs
Viper
Feet
Viper
Backpiece
Viper
Accessory
Sinister
Accessory
Sinister
Amulet
Viper
Ring
Viper
Ring
Viper
Scepter
Viper
Sigil
Dagger
Viper
Sigil
Rune
x6
Infusion
x18
Relic


Consumables

Food


Utility

    • or similar for a cheaper alternative, it should also be stronger if using


Usage

Rotation

If you're using a pistol offhand, ignore any weapon swaps below. It is also optimal to skip the Post-Shroud section in this case.

Opener

  1. If possible, precast Prepare Thousand Needles such that you can immediately trigger it and place it a second time.
  2. Twilight Combo
  3. Spider Venom, Skale Venom and Thousand Needles. These are all instant cast, so can be used during the cast time of step 2. Make sure you're within range of allies for the venoms!
  4. Prepare Thousand Needles if it's available.
  5. Siphon
  6. Twilight Combo x2
  7. Weapon Swap Weapon Swap
  8. Twilight Combo
  9. Enter Shadow Shroud


Opening Shroud Loop

The first two uses of Shadow Shroud are slightly longer than during the rest of your rotation. This makes cooldowns line up better, as well as optimising Sigil of Superior Sigil of Doom triggers.

  1. Grasping Shadows Grasping Shadows
  2. Mind Shock Mind Shock (if using Relic of Akeem)
  3. Eternal Night Eternal Night
  4. Haunt Shot Haunt Shot until Grasping Shadows Grasping Shadows is off cooldown
  5. Grasping Shadows Grasping Shadows
  6. Haunt Shot Haunt Shot until Grasping Shadows Grasping Shadows is off cooldown
  7. Grasping Shadows Grasping Shadows
  8. Exit Shadow Shroud


Post-Shroud

  1. Twilight Combo x3
  2. Weapon Swap Weapon Swap
  3. Twilight Combo
  4. Siphon
  5. Twilight Combo
  6. Shadow BoltDouble BoltTriple Bolt - if you're fast, then you have time to fit Shadow Bolt between steps 1 and 2, and complete the chain here.
  7. repeat Opening Shroud Loop


Rest of the Rotation

The rest of the rotation has no strict skill order:

  • You should enter Shadow Shroud as soon as it becomes available, and use one of the shroud loops below.
  • If using Relic of Akeem, use Mind Shock off cooldown while in Shadow Shroud.
  • Use Siphon, Spider Venom, Skale Venom, Prepare Thousand Needles and Thieves Guild off cooldown.
    • Triggering Thousand Needles can be delayed if necessary, as the cooldown is only gated by preparing it.
    • As Thieves Guild lasts for 24 seconds, it may be worth saving until the next phase of a boss if the current phase is about to end.
  • Spam Twilight Combo to use up all your initiative.
  • Try to finish autoattack chains if possible. Unusually, you have a lot of grace time between the chain skills to use other skills without cancelling the chain.
  • If you have no other skills to cast, you can use Hide in Shadows to gain access to Shadowsquall. The cast time is very long though, so be sure you won't have to delay other skills in order to finish it.
  • Weapon Swap Weapon Swap, Enter Shadow Shroud and Exit Shadow Shroud will all trigger Sigil of Superior Sigil of Doom and Quick Pockets. These have a 9- and an 8-second internal cooldown respectively, so if you are able to track these cooldowns you can squeeze extra damage out of the rotation.
    • Otherwise just Weapon Swap Weapon Swap off cooldown and hope for the best, being sure that you have less than 9 initiative to prevent wasting the effect of Quick Pockets in case it triggers.


Normal Shroud Loop

Most of the time when you enter shroud, you want to do the following loop:

  1. Grasping Shadows Grasping Shadows
  2. Eternal Night Eternal Night
  3. Haunt Shot Haunt Shot until Grasping Shadows Grasping Shadows is off cooldown
  4. Grasping Shadows Grasping Shadows
  5. Exit Shadow Shroud

Use Siphon if it comes off cooldown between steps 1 and 4.


Short Shroud Loop

Sometimes you will end up going into shroud just before your utility skills come off cooldown. In this case, do a much shorter loop:

  1. Grasping Shadows Grasping Shadows
  2. Eternal Night Eternal Night
  3. Exit Shadow Shroud


Video example

Video example (with fractal relic)


Utility

CC

  • Basilisk Venom
  • Shadowfall can provide more reliable CC on encounters with extra targets (equivalent to 3 basilisk venom hits), or you want to pull targets together
  • Mind Shock Mind Shock
  • Headshot, if bringing offhand pistol


Support

All your Scepter skills and Siphon can be used with an allied target to provide them barrier and Dark Sentry. This is a DPS loss, but can be used to save people if a healer isn't going to (particularly helpful on the tank).


General Tips

  • Almost all your damage can be done at range, but Eternal Night Eternal Night and Mind Shock Mind Shock are both melee range. If you are not in range to use them, either delay or skip them during the shroud loop.
  • While in Shadow Shroud, incoming damage is absorbed by your Shadow Force rather than your health. If you believe an incoming attack will kick you out before finishing the full Shroud loop, it may be worth doing a shorter one instead.
    • If you have more than 2 stacks of Consume Shadows when you exit, the group healing you provide will exceed the personal damage mitigation you would have had. You're helping!
    • Alternatively, if there are no allies within range, you can use Shadow Shroud defensively to absorb incoming damage, as you lose your Shadow Force on Shroud exit regardless.
  • Avoid staying for too long in Shadow Shroud as the DPS from Haunt Shot Haunt Shot is worse than that of Scepter, and you need to spend initiative to maintain stacks of Lead Attacks.
  • If there is nothing to attack, you can target allies with Scepter skills to buff them with barrier, and apply stacks of venom via Dark Sentry just before a new phase starts.


Ratings

This build has a rating of 4 stars based on 3 votes.
Log in or register to rate this build.
3 stars
OfficerAndyGentleman gave this build 3 stars • April 2024
Simple rotation, almost fully ranged, and even provides a bit of incidental support. With the nerf to shadow shroud you need to be a little careful about taking excess damage, and being almost entirely single-target with a low damage ceiling hurts its potential..
5 stars
Lucinellia gave this build 5 stars • March 2022
An incredibly strong condition DPS option that is only limited in terms of stacking by venom sharing. Offers very high DPS, good CC, good survivability, good sustain and does not have the issue of forced movement that has plagued cDD and cDE.
5 stars
Wizardxeze gave this build 5 stars • March 2022
With simple rotation and able to deal top damage and is able to deal good range dmg this build might become meta for Fractals/Strikes/Raids As rotations are still missing: Step 1: use utility skills off cooldown. Use F1 and Weapon swap off cooldown when not full Initiative Step 2: 333333333 Step 3: F2 Shadow Shroud off cooldown when you don't have initiative 2 4 5 2222 until you have 10 initiative drop the Shadow Shroud F2 Step 4: Repeat from Step 1 Tips: -Entering Shadow Shroud can activates Quick Pockets trait causing you to gain 3 initiative, you want to avoid this if possible with weapon swap. -F1 can be used for Allies, you should always make sure you have done so if you don't see the tether while in Shadow Shroud. -Barrier gives Rot, when boss phases pick up dps and auto-attack them as that will give you extra dps when boss comes back. -Shadow Shroud 5 is delayed Stability, you can use this for examples against Chrain Wing 4 first raid boss if you don't trust your raid team as it is part of your dps rotation -Poison is 5 targets and if you use it only for yourself that is ~10k dps loss. -Know your timings. Poison lasts 30 seconds and has 30 second duration, abuse this but make sure you get poisons to 5 people. -CC taking pistol is major dmg loss and should be avoided, your CC is Basilisk Venom or Shadowfall for AOE CC

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