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Frost Control! – Magicka Frost Staff Tank!

Author: Snibbers

Frost Control! – Magicka Frost Staff Tank!

Class: WARDEN

Race: Altmer (High Elf)

Main Role: Tank

Health, Magicka, Stamina

HEALTH MAGICKA STAMINA
37000 (with food, unbuffed) 20000 9500

 

Skills

 

Bar 1

Weapon 1: Destruction Staff

Gripping Shards

Warden Skill

Gripping Shards

Impaling Shards

 

Elemental Blockade

Destruction Staff Skill

Elemental Blockade

Wall of Elements

 

Arctic Blast

Warden Skill

Arctic Blast

Arctic Wind

 

Leeching Vines

Warden Skill

Leeching Vines

Living Vines

 

Shimmering Shield

Warden Skill

Shimmering Shield

Crystallized Shield

 

Permafrost

Warden Skill

Permafrost

Sleet Storm

 

Bar 2

Weapon 2: Destruction Staff

Elemental Drain

Destruction Staff Skill

Elemental Drain

Weakness to Elements

 

Lotus Blossom

Warden Skill

Lotus Blossom

Lotus Flower

 

Ice Fortress

Warden Skill

Ice Fortress

Frost Cloak

 

Blue Betty

Warden Skill

Blue Betty

Betty Netch

 

Inner Rage

Undaunted Skill

Inner Rage

Inner Fire

 

Permafrost

Warden Skill

Permafrost

Sleet Storm

 

Armor Types

Light Armor Medium Armor Heavy Armor
2 0 5

 

Gear and Item Set Info

 

General

Using 5 heavy and 2 light is more valuable for increase in magicka and spell resistance than any bonus given from 1 light and 1 medium. This is due to it being a full magicka build.

In terms of enchantments on jewellery, use healthy (health rergen) if you want to ensure tankiness to the extreme, but for the most part you do enough healing from leeching vines, lotus blossom and Arctic blast. Alterrnatively use spell damage enchantments to boost your damage and healing.

Fasalla's Guile and warrior-poet can easily be replaced with whatever you feel is best to round off the stats. An alternative could be a Maelstrom Arena Frost Staff and a 3 piece jewellery set. 

 

Traits and Enchantments

Head - Infused, Magicka Enchantment

Shoulder - Sturdy, Magicka Enchantment

Chest - Infused, Magicka Enchantment

Legs - Infused, Magicka Enchantment

Waist - Sturdy, Magicka Enchantment

Hands - Sturdy, Magicka Enchantment

Feet - Sturdy, Magicka Enchantment

Necklace - Healthy, Health recovery or Spell Damage enchantment

Ring - Healthy, Health recovery or Spell Damage enchantment

Ring - Healthy, Health recovery or Spell Damage enchantment

Weapon One - Defending, Crusher Enchantment

Weapon Two - Defending, Crusher Enchantment

 

Hist Bark + Blood Spawn +  Fasalla's Guile / Warrior-Poet

Lower health, better blocking. The hist bark version is a solid choice with plenty of health and resistance and it enhances blocking to completely undermine some incoming damage with the dodge chance. However, using this build you simply won't have the time to block as often as with sword and shield. Blood Spawn is excellent for extra resistance and a lot of ultimate gain. Warrior poet trades health and healing recieved for more resistance after the Horns of the Reach update.

Head - Blood Spawn's Guise 

Shoulder - Blood Spawn's Epaulets

Chest - Hist Bark

Legs - Hist Bark

Waist - Hist Bark

Hands - Hist Bark

Feet - Hist Bark

Necklace - Fasalla's guile or warrior-poet

Ring - Fasalla's Guile or warrior-poet

Ring - Fasalla's Guile or warrior-poet

Weapon One - Ice Staff of Fasalla's Guile or warrior-poet

Weapon Two - Ice Staff of Fasalla's Guile or warrior-poet

 

Plague Doctor + Blood Spawn +  Fasalla's Guile / Warrior Poet

Seeing as you won't be blocking as often, plague doctor offers an alternative that can boost your health up to 40k health (with in-combat buffs and food active). This is a nice way to ensure your tankiness when not blocking as often. I've had a lot of success with this. Warrior poet trades health and healing recieved for more resistance after the Horns of the Reach update.

Head - Blood Spawn's Guise 

Shoulder - Blood Spawn's Epaulets

Chest - Plague Doctor

Legs - Plague Doctor

Waist - Plague Doctor

Hands - Plague Doctor

Feet - Plague Doctor 

Necklace - Fasalla's guile or warrior-poet

Ring - Fasalla's Guile or warrior-poet

Ring - Fasalla's Guile or warrior-poet

Weapon One - Ice Staff of Fasalla's Guile or warrior-poet

Weapon Two - Ice Staff of Fasalla's Guile  or warrior-poet

 

Plague Doctor + Ysgrammor's Birthright (thanks to Danny in the comments below)

Balancing health and a offerring a higher damage, combining the plague doctor and Ysgrammor's birthright (Jewels + shoulder or head) is a sound way to go. It offers plenty of tankiness to survive, but you do gain less ultimate and health in favor of damage.

Head - Monster set, e.g. Nerien'et forr health, infernal Guardian for Magicka

Shoulder - Epaulets of Ysgrammor's Birthright

Chest - Plague Doctor 

Legs - Plague Doctor 

Waist - Plague Doctor

Hands - Plague Doctor 

Feet - Plague Doctor 

Necklace - Ysgramor's Frostmaiden's Tear 

Ring - Ysgramor's Ghormagham's Shawl 

Ring - Ysgramor's Ghormagham's Shawl 

Weapon One - Ice Staff of Ysgramor's Birthright

Weapon Two - Ice Staff of Ysgramor's Birthright

 

General Info

 

This is a fun build that aims to go full magicka tank, utilizing the frost staffs ability to taunt fo 15s and turning blockcost into magicka. By doing so, no stamina is required and thus blocking can be done with a lot of magicka, but without a shield. I've tanked all dungeons and some veteran dungeons without any problems. This build provides a different and fun way of tanking that excels at gathering up tons of mobs and keeping them in place, while AoEing them. The build focuses heavily on crowd control and AoE to compensate for the lacking shield. It's not difficult to stay alive despite the lack of a shield.

Strengths

  • Full magicka and still enough stamina for break free.
  • Excellent crowd control. Exceptional at gathering up large amounts of mobs and keeping them in place.
  • Easy aggro management with frost staff heavy attack taunts and inner fire (for swift taunts).
  • Excellent resource management due to a high amount of heavy attacks and Blue Betty.
  • Decent AoE from Arctic Blast, Gripping Shards and Elemental Blockade. Small numbers, but many!
  • Plenty of healing for yourself and the group with Arctic Blast, Leeching Vines and Lotus Blossom.
  • Particularly good with ranged AoE DPS group members. Mobs are locked in place with the tank and will focus on him if they can't reach the DPS.
  • You don't necessarily need a high health regen, as you do a lot of healing from skill use.
  • Successfully tested in veteran dungeons, including Cradle of Shadows, Mazzatun and Imperial City Tower / Prison.

Weaknesses

  • Sometimes you end up blocking less due to taking aggro with heavy attacks.
  • Frost staff heavy attack taunts are slow.
  • You lose the shield, which gives an extra equipment piece to create a 5, 5, 2 piece setup.
  • Without a shield you lose some armour and one enchantment spot for e.g. more health.
  • The benefits of having sword + shield outweighs the frost staff, making it unfit for min-maxers.
  • Untested in trials. Likely not viable.

Skills and Skill Rotation

  • Run around with your second skill bar ready, once running into battle, use Blue Betty, followed by ice fortress and Lotus Blossom. Doing them in that order, lets you know that they need to be reused once your blue betty disappears. These skills increases your magicka recovery, spell critical which helps your AoE and defence. Lotus Blossom is great for ice staff tanking as you use many heavy attacks to taunt, which then heals for 4700.
  • Using Leeching vines after shifting to main weapon is useful, but can be used after arctic blast (further down).
  • Elemental Drain helps you and your team manage resources. If the healer uses it, it can be replaced.
  • Inner Rage is nice to keep at hand if you need to get aggro on something swiftly.
  • When going into a fight, rush into the middle of as many mobs as possible and use Gripping Shards, immobilizing (3s) and slowing as many as possible. The Glacial Presence passive gives this skill a 200% chance to apply chilled to these mobs. Follow up with Blockade of Frost, aiming it to hit as many as possible. Chilled enemies (from gripping shards) hit by blockade of frost are immobilized for another 4 seconds. Quickly use Arctic blast to increase self-healing and suddenly you have AoE damage from three sources.
  • Use leeching vines to apply life steal to all the mobs hitting you. This can suddenly add a lot of healing.
  • Shimmering shield is useful to keep up if ranged mobs are shooting at you. Along with the Blood Spawn set you can gain ultimate quite fast. Especially because you can reapply shimmering shield immediately. It also negates the ranged damage.
  • Permafrost adds even more AoE and crowd control. It can be used differently, sometimes it's nice to use it immediately, if you're running into an already packed up group. Due to its large radius, you can often reach ranged mobs as well, stunning them for a while and taking their aggro. More often you'll want to pop it once you've gathered up a whole bunch of mobs, rendering them even more useless.
  • Use heavy attacks to taunt ranged mobs and regain magicka.
  • Due to so many mobs being immobilized, you can also move away from the main bulk of them, if you don't have any close ranged group members, they can't do anything.

Food

  • Orzorga's Red Frothgar (+ 5000 health, + 457 Magicka Recovery).

Potion

  • Essence of Spell Critical (Major Prophecy, major fortitude, major intellect, restore 9373 health, restore 7582 magicka) - Made from: Lorkhan's tears + Bugloss + Lady's Smock + Water Hyacinth.

Mundus Stone possibilities (In order of relevance)

  • The Atronach (magicka recovery)
  • The Apprentice (spell damage)
  • The Ritual (Healing effectiveness)
  • The Steed (health recovery + movement speed)

 

Champion Point Tips

 

The Lover

  • Tenacity - 40 (You heavy attack a lot, so an increase in the resources given back is nice.)
  • Arcanist - 40 (Magicka Regen is always nice)
  • Healthy - 40 (Health Regen is always nice!)

The Shadow

  • Shadow Ward - 100 (Lowers the cost of blocking more! - Remember that it costs magicka)

The Apprentice

  • Blessed - 75 (An increase in healing is helpful for leeching vines and lotus Blossom)
  • Spell Erosion - 55 (You do a lot of AoE damage, this increases it!)
  • Elemental Expert - 55 (You do a lot of AoE damage, this increases it!)

The Atronach

  • Staff Expert - 35 (More heavy damage and it unlocks retaliation and Riposte for blocking)

The Steed

  • Iron Clad - 50 (You'll often be piling up a lot of adds that hit you, this helps)
  • Spell Shield - 50 (More spell resistance to round up the numbers!)
  • Resistant - 20 (A little critical resistance doesn't hurt!)

The Lady

  • Hardy - 15 (Better defence and reach Bulwark)
  • Elemental Defender - 15 (Better defence and reach Bulwark)

The Lord

  • Bastion - 15 (Increases shield to heavy ice staff attacks and when blocking, (also iceheart))
  • Heavy Armor Focus - 40 (To compensate a little for the armour lost without a medium piece)
  • Quick Recovery - 15 (For better healing with leeching vines and Lotus Flower (and healer))

 

 

 

Build Rating

Rating: 4.8. From 17 votes.
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16 Comments

  • Arbit
    Jun 24, 2017

    Do you mean blessed instead of elf born for healing champion points?

    Also how does this build fair against strong attacks, like chudan poison spit. Do you find you have enough mana to block?

    Reply
    • Snibbers
      Jun 24, 2017

      I did mean blessed, yes! Thank you! I’ve only done Mazzatun in normal so far, but I was able to block the spit then! I should try in veteran mode! It, of course, works fine against large single burst attacks and against something like the Chudan poison spit or the Daedroth flames in white gold tower does drain magicka fast, but you can recover it quickly after with blue betty and heavy attacks after.

      Reply
  • Arbit
    Jun 24, 2017

    I tried out a similar build on chudan, and it worked perfectly. Thanks for the tip about shadow ward, that saved tons of mana investing heavily into that.

    Reply
    • Draqone
      Jun 24, 2017

      Chudan’s spit is a projectile. It can be reflected, hitting him for 200k to 400k dmg per hit or absorbed by spamming Warden’s Shimmering shield.

      Reply
      • Arbit
        Jun 25, 2017

        Thanks for the heads up, ya tried it out and completely negated his spit.

        Reply
  • Aisaatana
    Jul 14, 2017

    Sounds quite fun and original! Which boon do you use btw?

    Reply
    • Snibbers
      Jul 14, 2017

      Thank you! I’ve actually been using the steed to up my health regen and the extra movement speed is always nice, but the atronach is an excellent alternative also.

      Reply
  • Danny
    Jul 30, 2017

    I’m now rnning with plague doctor set infused with magicka enchants and 1 monster piece.
    Jewelry staffs and 1 armor piece are ysgramors birthright set. that gives you more cold spelldamage. Its really fun, i really hlep out iwth the dps while still be able to tank solid. I managed to do rifts in craglorn solo easely with that setup. further i use max hp max magicka food and got 15 points only in health getting me to a nice number with food of 31k
    I also use the atronarch as mundus. I do not have alot of health recovery. but it isnt really needed with all the heals. still need to put some cp in it.

    Reply
    • Snibbers
      Aug 8, 2017

      I’ve actually been running plague doctor instead of Hist Bark as well. It’s been working well! I still quite like Blood Spawn for the Ultimate gain and the resistance. So long as the DPS do their job, I like being extra tanky. I can certainly see how the damage increase from Ysgrammor’s Birthright could be useful though! If they ever add a possibility for an off-hand item for staves, I’d probably go for that.

      Reply
  • Bryson
    Aug 8, 2017

    Any Idea if the Defending trait will still be the one used in HotR update next week? Just wondering what your thoughts are

    Reply
    • Snibbers
      Aug 8, 2017

      Yeah. I’ll still be using Defending on my frost staves. We’re going to lose 2408 spell and physical resistance, which is sad, but I think it’s still the superior choice out of the options. It’s still quite a lot of resistance for a tank not to take.

      Alternatively you could take powered for extra healing, but with this build at least, you already do quite a lot of that. Could do Nirnhoned to boost damage and make up the resistance loss with CP or alike, but… I’d still just keep with the defending trait. Don’t really see a better alternative and 2700 physical and spell resistance is still significant.

      Reply
      • Bryson
        Aug 8, 2017

        Now what about the change to the Lady’s 30 CP unlock Shield Expert I notice you have nothing into the Lady tree but it’s changing to allow Ice Staves to benefit from it by 1500 Resistances

        Reply
        • Snibbers
          Aug 8, 2017

          Ooo. I hadn’t seen that. That’s probably a good way to go! I think I’ll look at a CP overhaul once the update hits!

          Reply
          • Bryson
            Aug 22, 2017

            Hey, did you end up making a CP overhaul?

        • Snibbers
          Aug 22, 2017

          I have tried updating it now, yeah =) With the trait nerfs and overall nerfs, I do believe it’s necessary to get the 30 points in The Lady. It’s starting to suffer a bit on the healing received part, but this has been working for me still. I’ve replaced Fasalla’s Guile with Warrior-poet to regain some resistance as well, at the cost of 1000 health and 4% healing recieved. I still need to play around a bit, but I feel like it’s important to keep the resistance numbers decently rounded.

          In terms of CP, it’s especially the numbers in The Lord that I might move around a bit, depending on how things play out.

          Reply
  • Bryce
    Aug 30, 2017

    I love the skill sets listed here–those ice AoEs really come in handy, as do those magicka-restoring abilities.
    However, I wouldn’t say this tank build is REQUIRED to wear a big health buff set at all, if you wanted to pull a bit more damage or have more magicka resource. You could reverse the enchantments vs. armor sets entirely.
    I’ve recently geared up my breton warden tank with 5-piece heavy Kragenac’s hope on front bar (for some resources+a decent amount of spell damage), 5-piece lich (jewelry, one piece, and weapon on backbar; for quick boost to resource when you don’t have to block), and 1 heavy, 1 light Valkyn Skoria monster set. They are all purple, some impen, some divines (Lady mundas now, though i might switch to Lord or Mage), and health enchanted.
    It runs beautifully, with 30k+ health when combat/food buffed, 25k+ magicka, and enough magicka resource (with lich set and many of the skills listed here) to sustain my health and damage without having to block except for the occassional heavy hit by a boss/melee add.
    When you constantly have 3 ice AoEs down (shards, wall of elements, and arctic blast) and can keep those AoEs active, Valkyn Skoria procs A LOT, dealing a good amount of damage on top of what you are dishing out. I don’t know if it is the best monster set, but I like it, especially for the added health.
    This setup is MOST useful for dungeons in which adds are plentiful and dps is in high demand (i.e. Direfrost or City of Ash 2), but, as long as you can handle the rotation and remember to block, I think it can also handle the “real-deal” things like trials and more strenuous dungeons (I’ve even used it to complete Maelstrom Arena, because of the amount of damage it can pull).

    Reply

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