Road to Endgame: Comparing Dragonknight Builds

Comparison Shopping

With the holiday season concluded, I could not help but compare my research for which build I will base my campaign for Swashbuckler Supreme. We will call this “comparison shopping.” I’ll be discussing which build I ended up leaning toward and why. 

First, a hearty thank you to all the build guide writers out there. I appreciate you for doing the theorycraft so that others don’t have to. With that said, my finalists are: the “Powerful One Bar Dragonknight Dual Wield” build by Alcast, followed by “The Butcher,” build by Deltia (Deltias Gaming), and the “Stone Dragon” build by Hack The Minotaur. All of which can be found below:

Please note: these are all Stamina based builds for the Dragonknight class.

Powerful One Bar Dragonknight Dual Wield

This build is beginner friendly, only contains two armor/weapon and accessory sets, and has stamina for its primary stat. The build’s guide overview can be found on the ESO Hub website.

The Butcher

The Butcher is a stamina based build with a flexible rotation. It specializes in damage over time (DoT) and buffs. Deltia mentions this build may seem complex to some, but tries to streamline spells for simplicity and increased  survivability. This build can be customized for solo, PvE, and PvP specialities.

Stone Dragon

This build is geared for PVE players with stamina being the primary stat needed. The description on Hack The Minotaur’s website states the build also deals massive damage over time (DoT) as well as directly damaging targets.

Powerful One Bar Dragonknight Dual Wield


Up first, the “Powerful One Bar Dragonknight Dual Wield” build by Alcast. The first, most easily identifiable pro is not worrying about bar swapping, which is admittedly still not one of my greatest strengths in Elder Scrolls Online. The second is in the beginner portion of the build. There are only 2 sets needed, Druid’s Braid, which is craftable if you have seven traits researched, and Agility which comes from Imperial City (a PvP/PvE zone).

There’s a bit of a minor drawback to me, personally, as I’ve never favored anything to do with PvP, at all. Additionally, and this is a sticking point to most builds, the “beginner” version is a little light on the amount of buffs that it gives. Moving up to the best-in-slot version of this build, though, takes some work to accomplish.

One set comes from a trial (Cloudrest), one from a DLC dungeon, a monster set from the base game, and of course, the infamous Oakensoul Ring mythic. The last location takes a lot of work to unlock through the antiquities system, but offers 17 unique buffs at all times. The rotation, as common to most DK builds, is DoT intensive, which is a fairly neutral point to me. 

The Butcher


Next up, we have “The Butcher,” by Deltia. This beginner set build uses Hunding Rage, another craftable set, this time with a requirement of six traits. In addition, the other five piece set used to start here is an overland set, which implies more casual farming to set it up. 

As the build evolves into the recommended gear, it combines a dungeon set in Zen’s Redress from Lair of Maarselok and trial set in Roar of Alkosh from Maw of Lorkhaj. 

The skill selection on this build is good, but lacks the simplicity of a “one bar build.” Instead, it concentrates on a Front Bar (Dual Wield), a Back Bar (Two Handed), and Single Target Rotation.

There are some skills chosen on a situational basis, which is fine, but doesn’t appeal to me, personally. I’ll admit that I’d have difficulty remembering when to use said skills and potentially waste both their and the global cooldowns.

Deltias Gaming "The Butcher" PvE Stamina Dragonknight Build.

Stone Dragon


The third build is “Stone Dragon” by Hack The Minotaur. Its recommended sets are Deadly Strike (another PvP set, but purchasable from guild traders) and Leviathan, a dungeon set from Crypt of Hearts.

The monster set (head and shoulders from undaunted chests and the final boss of a dungeon) is Velidreth from Cradle of Shadows. Valkyn Skoria is a recommended alternate gear, giving an 8% chance to summon a meteor that explodes on impact with damage over time (DoT) during combat.

This build is DoT heavy, so if I were to run this particular monster set, I would definitely lean toward this, even if it’s a proc chance.


Now some similarities between the 3 builds include divines for traits on the gear, stamina glyphs on armor, at least one use of bloodthirsty glyphs on weapons. Standard of Might as the front bar ultimate, and an emphasis on DoTs, which is very common in stamina DK builds.

While the build from Hack The Minotaur does have a different mundus stone, the other two both use the Thief Mundus, which when combined with the 7 pieces of Divines gear, gives 2167 critical rating. 

A menu screen showing the skills chosen for a player character and details the progress to reach the 7th level in the Excavation skillset. Also lists all player known perks on the right side.

My Build Choice From These Three...

After deliberation, I’m probably going to go with the one bar build. There will be a lot of extra work to accomplish up front, but the massive stack of buffs that the Oakensoul offers is just too tempting to pass up.

I’m currently only at rank 6 on my antiquities skills, so I have one more rank before I can even start to truly farm for it.

However, as I start going into harder content, I’ll feel more secure in the simpler rotation, as well as the knowledge that I’ll have those buffs. While I am still searching though, I will continue to use Hunding’s Rage over the Druid’s Braid set.

I’ve heard of many people farming the PIllar of Nirn set, and it looks like I’ll be joining those ranks soon enough.

In terms of the Champion Points, I’ll clearly be progressing upward as I farm the sets. As discussed with LotusofDoom on the most recent episode of the Tenth Divine, 1400 is a good target number. As I have over 900 to go, I’ll also be attempting to do daily random dungeons and battlegrounds (which are 4v4v4 PVP) in an attempt to amass as much XP as possible within a short time. 


I’m looking forward to settling in and starting to work toward the end goal of Swashbuckler Supreme. The holidays are past and my schedule should be calming down, at least. Both they and the launch of World of Warcraft’s latest expansion, Dragonflight, ate away at my time. 

Now that I have a firmer plan for both gearing and character power progression, I’ll update next month on what I have accomplished on both of these fronts.

Perhaps I’ll even manage to find a group to regularly do content with, but scheduling, as always, is the true end boss.


Show Host

Shanty's journey into digital gaming starred with a trip to a friend's house in his first year of school, where he played Sonic for the first time. Since then he has fallen in love with rpgs, and especially mmorpgs, from WoW to FFXIV, from Lotro to ESO, he still tries to make time for them when he is away from his day job and the shantycats aren't begging for cuddles.

Leave a Reply