Who am I?
Hello, I am Chicken.Salad, and I am currently a Gunner main in the top Mount Tyrannas PvE guild, Amaterasu. I have been involved in many top-tier score runs in the past and currently have Shandra Manaya on farm, with over 100 clears. This is my guide on how to play Gunner to its greatest potential based on my past experiences in these many runs. Gunner is an easy class to grasp, but difficult to master. Feel free to parcel post me in-game if you have questions to anything not addressed in the guide.
If you’ve read the guide and are interested in watching gameplay videos to improve; here is my personal Youtube channel, check it out for recordings of my Gunner dungeon runs. It is important to analyze rotation and positioning when learning how to play any class, and it will be a great resource for those of you who want to play to the best of your ability!
Table of Content
- Who am I?
- Skills and Glyphs
- Tips and tricks
Pounding/Carving*, Focused, Savage, Spiteful.
*Run Carving you don’t have a mystic.
Slaying, Focused, Savage, Spiteful.
Optimal blue crystals:
4x Brutal Hardy Dyad.
Depending on the amount of crit factor you have, you will need to adjust your green crystals between in order to hit an optimal amount of Crit/Power.
+12 Masterwork Dreadnaught Arcannon
Attack Modifier: 9,670 (+3,771)
Impact Modifier: 41,568 (+36,164)
Increases MP regen of Combo Attack by 66%.
Do 6% more damage when you attack.
Increases damage by 6.9% when attacking from behind.
Increases PvP attack by 14.
Additional 6% PvP damage when attacking.
Increases damage by 9.3% when attacking enraged monsters.
+3: Increases damage by 9.3% when attacking enraged monsters.
+6: Increases damage by 6.9% when attacking from behind or Increases damage by 6%.
+9: Decreases skill cooldowns by 7.2%.
+10: Increases Attack Speed by 1%.
+11: Increases Attack Speed by 1.5%.
+12: Increases Attack Speed by 2%.
+15 Awakened: Starfall Arcannon
Attack Modifier: 9,766 (+4,980)
Impact Modifier: 41,651 (+44,983)
Increases MP regen of Combo Attack by 66%
Do 6% more damage when you attack
Increase damage by 6.9% when attacking from behind
Increase PvP attack by 14
Additional 6% PvP damage when attacking.
Increase PvP attack by 10 when attacking from behind
Increases damage by 9.3% when attacking enraged monsters.
+3: Increases damage by 9.3% when attacking enraged monsters.
+5: Increases damage by 6.9% when attacking from behind.
+7: Decreases skill cooldowns by 7.2%.
+9: Increases damage by 6%.
+10: Increase Attack Speed by 1%
+11: Increase Attack Speed by 1.5%
+12: Increase Attack Speed by 2%
+13: Increase damage by 1% against monsters.
+14: Increase damage by 2% against monsters.
+15: Increase damage by 3% against monsters.
There are 4 options for your top line roll:
Increases damage by 9.3% when attacking enraged monsters.
Decreases skill cooldowns by 7.2%.
Increases attack speed by 9%.
Increases crit factor by 18.
The enraged roll is the best choice between of all the options as it gives the most damage output mathematically. Skill cooldown is not a bad choice. However, it is inferior to the enraged roll since its damage increase is technically lower; as a result, your rotation would be completely different and suboptimal with it. Attack speed is to be avoided since AB and BF do not benefit from it. Crit factor roll is bad on almost all classes because its total damage increase outweighed by enraged roll or skill cooldown roll.
Bottom line rolls:
Increases damage by 9.3% when attacking enraged monster
Increases damage by 6.9% when attacking from behind
Decreases skill cooldown by 7.2%
Increases damage by 6%
You should roll for the 3 damage increases on the bottom lines of their weapon since they are vastly superior to the other rolls. Some might say that crit power is a viable fourth roll since Arcane Barrage has a 100% crit chance, but it is not the optimal roll. Assuming you are using full red dyads and a crit power VI scroll, your crit power should be at 8.10. By adding 0.3 crit power to that total amount, you are only increasing your crit damage by 3.7%. Crit factor roll is still not a viable fourth roll, since you are able to obtain crit factor easily from other sources such as accessories. Cooldown reduction is the best fourth roll since its utility outweighs every other fourth roll as it allows you to use more skills in a fight which in return gives you more Willpower generation.
+12 Masterwork Dreadnaught Hauberk (Plate)
Lancer, Berserker, Gunner, Brawler
Defense Modifier: 9,889 (+5,636)
Balance Modifier: 22,385 (+19,474)
Raises max MP by 1,012.
Reduces damage by 6%.
Raises max HP by 8%.
Decreases damage from enraged monsters by 10%.
Increases PvP defense by 13.
Increases crit resist factor by 21.
Increases power by 6.
Decreases Cooldown of Replenishment by 15% or Increases damage of Arcane Barrage by 7%.
+3: Decreases damage taken by 6%.
+6: Decreases damage taken from frontal attacks by 6.9%.
+9: Decreases damage taken from enraged monsters by 10%.
+10: Increases Endurance by 1.
+11: Increases Endurance by 2.
+12: Increases Endurance by 3.
+15 Awakened: Starfall Hauberk (Plate)
Lancer, Berserker, Gunner, Brawler
Defense Modifier: 10,164 (+8,537)
Balance Modifier: 22,497 (+24,296)
Raises max MP by 1,012
Reduces damage by 6%
Raises max HP by 8%
Decreases damage from enraged monsters by 10%
Increases PvP defense by 13
Increases crit resist factor by 21
Increases power by 7
Decreases Cooldown of Replenishment by 15% or Increases damage of Arcane Barrage by 7%.
+3: Decreases damage taken by 6%
+5: Decreases damage taken from frontal attacks by 6.9%
+7: Decreases damage taken from enraged monsters by 10%
+9: Increases max HP by 8%
+10: Increase Endurance by 1
+11: Increase Endurance by 2
+12: Increase Endurance by 3
Originally, AB damage roll was actually superior to Replenish CD; however, after the recent nerf to AB (DS2 patch), this roll has lost some of it’s value. As of right now, Burst Fire’s damage is actually much higher than Arcane Barrage, so we want to focus on building as much Willpower as possible. It is however, much harder to adopt a Replenishment roll playstyle. Players with low ping should try to roll for Replenishment CD, as it allows them to orient their playstyle to maximize Willpower gain for Burst Fire. Players with high ping should opt for the AB damage roll as it allows them to still deal decent damage by focusing less on Burst Fire.
Pumped III weapon and gloves or a combination of Keen III* and Pumped III.
Explanation on etchings:
Double CDR etchings aren’t bad, but the setup is not optimal for PvE. The utility of CDR etchings is to do your rotations faster since they have cooldown reduction stats and attack speed stats (which synergizes well with each other). If you have too much CDR but not enough attack speed, you will find that a lot of your skills are up before you even finish your rotation. The problem with gunner is that they don’t benefit from attack speed, so CDR etchings basically only gives you cooldown reduction but no attack speed.
The best gunner rotation for optimal DPS does not require cooldown reduction. Also, the main reason people build CDR on gunner is to use Arcane Barrage more often. The problem with that is it doesn’t actually boost your damage, because gunners don’t rely 100% on Arcane Barrage. So a lot of times, I have AB up but I don’t cast it because I’m using Burst Fire. .Pumped or keen etchings are the way to go, since they gives you more damage in both Burst Fire/Arcane Barrage which contribute about 55% of your dps (23% for AB and 32% for Burst Fire).
* Note: Depending on the amount of crit you have, One Keen III might be necessary if you are running with a power innerwear.
Half Power Half Crit Build vs. Full Crit Build:
Time Bomb has a 100% crit rate (if done correctly), Arcane Barrage has a 100% crit rate, and Burst Fire has a 80% crit rate. Arcane Barrage is roughly 23% of your damage, Burst Fire is roughly 32% of your damage, and Time Bomb is roughly 10% of your damage. Therefore, we can assume that Arcane Barrage, Burst Fire, and Time Bomb count as 70% of your damage on average, and the other 30% is the DPS contributed by the rest of your skills. In short, try to aim for 180 total crit rate (47+133) and then from there on build as much power as you want.
After further testing in the new DS2 patch, I have concluded that a slightly crit oriented build is actually much better (around 20-30 extra crit factor), but harder to play with. With the recent 10% nerf to Arcane Barrage, prioritizing Burst Fire has become even more important. Prioritizing Burst Fire over Arcane Barrage is actually a difficult thing to do, since you must manage your willpower accordingly. If you are lacking in Burst Fire hits, the extra crit added to your new build will essentially be useless as you do not benefit enough from it since AB’s critical rate is already high. In conclusion, a ¾ crit build is actually superior if your skill level is high enough. The usage of a carving crystal is actually very viable in this patch. You should be aiming for 90-100% crit chance on the 6th hit of Burst Fire for optimal damage.
Corvette Ring and Galleon Ring
Rolls: 4 power, 4 Crit.
Corvette Earring and Galleon Earring
Rolls: 4% HP, 4 Endurance.
Galley OR Cutter Necklace
Rolls: 4 power.
Empowered and Quickcarve brooch*
Rolls: 6 power, 3 crit.
Explanation for brooch:
Empowered Brooch is superior to Quickcarve* because gunners have high critical chance on most of their skills. Having Empowered will allow you to do more raw damage. Quickcarve Brooch will affect the critical rate of Bombardment, Mana Missile and Burst Fire and the attack speed bonus gained from it is mostly useless (unless for score runs).
* Note: Having a gold Quickcarve Brooch is a good idea for high score runs, you can use two brooches in a fight. Have you Empowered Brooch as your default preset. Right before the fight, switch your brooch with the other one and activate your Quickcarve Brooch. Immediately after, switch back to your original preset and activate your second brooch later during the fight. Do not activate both brooches at the same time, because your Empowered Brooch will simply overwrite the effect of your Quickcarve Brooch.
Fortified or Reinforced*.
Rolls: 16 crit or 8 power.
* Note: Depending on the amount of crit you have, you might need to switch between a fortified or a reinforced innerwear.
Skills and Glyphs:
Here are the different glyph builds that you can use:
If you want detailed explanations of what I think about each glyph and skill, read the following paragraphs. Otherwise, you can just skip. I don’t recommend skipping them though.
Red – Not recommended
Green – Optional
Blue – Mandatory
Fire a shot which explodes on impact or up to 20m away.
Blast is your animation cancelling skill, it should be used in between each skills. Blast makes up around 5% of your total damage output.
(3 points) Glyph of Power: Increases skill damage by 20%.
This glyph is decent. If you Blast cancel enough, your damage should be boosted marginally.
(2 points) Glyph of Affirmation: Gain 5 Willpower on each hit.
It’s… an okay glyph. In a 1 minute fight, you usually do around 30 Blasts, so you can expect to get around 60 Willpower from this glyph during this duration.
*After further testing, this glyph is actually very good in DS2 uppers, since most fights tend to last for a very long time (5-15 mins).
(4 points) Glyph of the Swift: 15% chance to increase Attack Speed by 15% for 10 seconds.
With the amount of Blasts you should be doing in a fight, the likelihood of activating this glyph is really high. 15% attack speed may not seem a lot, but it adds up in your DPS quickly the more you use your Blast.
Target an area within 25m, then launch a volley of eleven shots with a high chance of stagger. Gain 100 Willpower for each successful hit.
Bombardment is your ultimate burn skill, and it should do around 5-10% of your total damage. It should be used whenever you have it up, unless you are saving it for a coordinated burn with the rest of your party. *Best used with Quickcarve or Empowered Brooch
(4 points) Glyph of Carving: Doubles the chance to crit.
Bombardment has a surprisingly low crit rate, so with the help of this glyph and a Quickcarve Brooch, you should be expecting more than 50% crit rate.
(4 points) Glyph of the Swift: Increases casting speed by 25%.
A lot of people don’t take this glyph, but in reality it could boost your damage significantly, since attack speed equates to faster cast animation; you waste less time casting a slow ability. When casting this skill, there’s a high chance of front critting the boss as some of them might move a lot, for instance, Shandra Manaya. By using this glyph, we can guarantee back crits. This glyph is especially important during high score runs where speed is crucial.
Fire a spread of five penetrating shots at enemies within 20m. Gain 20 WP for each successful hit, up to a max of 100 WP.
Scattershot is your ultimate filler skill – it should solely be used as a FILLER skill. It fills the gap b This skill should consist of 5% of your damage if used correctly. Scattershot has two uses: building up your Willpower and using it as a mobility skill. Scattershot shoots five pellets that each deal a different amount of damage. For example: The first pellet does 100k, the second and third will do 50k, and the fourth and fifth will do 25k. You should not prioritize this skill over Arcane Barrage/Burst Fire.
(3 points) Glyph of Power: Increases skill damage by 25%.
Although this skill is used a lot in your rotation, it does minimal damage. A 25% damage boost would increase the damage of Scattershot to 6%. You can take this glyph if you have extra points left.
(2 points) Glyph of Slick: Reduces recoil by 40%.
This glyph choice is very controversial; some absolutely hate it and some love it. It’s a personal preference at this point. This glyph allows you to cast Scattershot faster (basically making it an attack speed glyph). You can use the skill’s recoil to your advantage by using it as a mobility skill when you need to reach a boss’s back or you can use the recoil glyph to cast Scattershot faster.
(1 point) Glyph of Brilliance: Reduces MP cost by 50.
Pick this glyph if you have extra points available.
Swing your arcannon to attack enemies within 7m. Press the skill button again to fire a second shot which moves you back.
Point Blank is a really unique and odd skill. It’s one of your main mobility and gap closer skills. This skill is especially useful when trying to get behind the boss when you are positioned right next to it. Point Blank has two parts in its usage: the first activation swings your character to the direction your camera is pointing at and the second activation pushes you back (read rotation section for more in-depth combos).
(3 points) Glyph of Influence: 20% chance to eliminate cooldown for Arc Bomb.
The likelihood of activating this glyph is almost nil, assuming you do 5 Point Blanks in a fight, you get one extra arc bomb… which is pretty bad.
(2 points) Glyph of Restoration: Recovers 2% of total HP on each hit.
This glyph recovers a total of 4% total HP when you use the two parts of Point Blank. If you are relying on this glyph to stay alive, then you are doing something wrong.
(3 points) Glyph of Energy: Decreases cooldown by 25%.
Depending on how much you use Point Blank, this glyph might be really useful. This skill has a relatively long cooldown of 15 seconds and when you combine this glyph with a Battle Nostrum VI, it reduces this skill’s cooldown to 9 seconds.
(4 points) Glyph of Power: Increases skill damage by 30%
Point Blank has a really low natural crit rate and a really low base damage. You should not rely on Point Blank to deal damage.
Fire a penetrating shot in a line up to 20m away. Holding down the skill button continues firing as long as you have Willpower. Each successive shot* has increased skill damage and chance to crit.
Burst Fire is your main DPS skill, and it comprises 30% of your total damage. This skill is really ping dependant, if you have less than 120 ping, than you can hold down your Burst Fire button. Unfortunately, if you have a high ping, you need to create a macro which taps for you because you cannot hold down the button, you have to manually tap it. Burst Fire acts as a crit amplifier (read main DPS rotation section) and should be prioritized over everything else (including Arcane Barrage). It is best used when above 60% Willpower.
(4 points) Glyph of Restoration: Recovers 1% of total HP on each hit.
I have seen some gunners use this glyph. It’s not bad per say, but it is a huge waste of glyph points to rely on Burst Fire to stay healthy (it should be your healer’s job!). It is somewhat useful if you are trying to solo dungeons.
(4 points) Glyph of Affirmation: Reduces Willpower cost by 10.
One of the most important glyphs for gunners, without this glyph, you can expect to do 21 Burst Fires with full Willpower, which is not nearly enough. Therefore, we use this glyph to increase our Burst Fire hits to a total of 25, which gives us more DPS.
(2 points) Glyph of Longshot: Increases range by 5 meters.
With the addition of the new rare glyphs, you get a few extra glyph points. This glyph is really a personal preference. It is particularly useful on the third boss of Kalivan’s Dreadnaught and Shandra Manaya (Floor 22 of Dreadspire).
*Note: each successive burst fire hits will increase your crit chance by a certain amount (please refer to the FAQ section for the Burst Fire crit rate calculator) and will increase your damage by adding the first hit’s damage on each hit, for example: your first hit will do 10k damage, the second one will do 20k, the third one will do 30k and so on until the 6th hit (which caps out at 60k damage).
Fire a shot that explodes on impact or up to 20m away, leaving behind a Time Bomb that detonates 2 seconds later. Gain 20 Willpower on a successful hit, and 40 Willpower from the secondary detonation.
Contrary to popular belief, Time Bomb should not be used whenever you have it up (read main DPS rotation section). This skill is your rotation starter, it comprises of around 5-10% of your DPS and it gives a significant boost to your Willpower generation. It’s skill animation is ridiculously fast (almost as fast as Blast) which you should take advantage of. You must position Time Bomb manually in order to get a backcrit, aim your skill on the ground (not directly on the boss), right behind the back of the boss. Click here for visual aids.
(5 points) Glyph of Power: Increases skill damage by 25%.
If you use Time Bomb correctly then this glyph will increase your total damage by a huge amount.
(2 points) Glyph of Affirmation: Gain 15 Willpower on a successful hit.
This glyph is very misleading. A lot of people think that they only get an extra 15 Willpower when Time Bomb hits a target. In reality, Time Bomb will pulse 8 times, and each time it pulses, you generate 15 Willpower (120 WP in total). In short, you get 60 Willpower from Time Bomb itself and an extra 120 Willpower from this glyph which leads to a total of 180 Willpower or 3 extra Burst Fire hits.
Fire an energy pulse that damages all enemies in a line up to 22m. Press the skill button again to detonate the pulse damaging enemies in a wide radius with a high chance to crit and gaining Willpower. If used within 40m of a summoned HB construct, the HB fires 5 Electric Bombs at the detonation point.
Arcane Barrage is one of your main damage skills and main Willpower generation skill. It comprises 20-30% of your damage and should be prioritized after Burst Fire. There are 2 parts to this skill: on the first activation, your gunner will shoot a giant energy pulse which deals a low amount of damage and has a low natural crit rate when it touches an entity, and on the second activation, the pulse explodes dealing a huge amount of damage with an extremely high chance to crit. Assuming you are in front of a boss, you can still get backtime by shooting your laser through it and then detonate it when Arcane Barrage reaches its back.
When gunners were released in May of 2015, people were prioritizing Arcane Barrage over everything else since people were seeing over 4 million crits and ignored Burst Fire completely. This lead to many problems, as people were running out of mana constantly and always had full Willpower. Here is an example of why Arcane Barrage shouldn’t be prioritized and here is an example of how you should prioritize Burst Fire over Arcane Barrage. With the recent nerfs to Arcane Barrage, prioritizing Burst Fire is even more important than ever before. Another interesting mechanic of Arcane Barrage is electric bombs. Whenever you have HB-7 summoned, your robot will fire 5 projectiles at the detonation point of your AB. The positioning of your robot does not matter if you get backtime or not, it is the positioning of your character. If you are positioned behind the boss and your robot is shooting it’s electric bombs in front of the boss, your electric bombs will back crit. On the contrary, if you are positioned in front of the boss and your robot is positioned behind, your electric bombs will NOT back crit. Here is an example of how the electric bombs work.
(3 points) Glyph of Power: Increases your skill damage by 20%.
An increase of 20% to one of your hardest hitting skill is a really big boost in damage. You will definitely notice a huge difference in numbers when you apply this glyph in your build.
(2 points) Glyph of Affirmation: Gain an additional 15 Willpower on each hit.
Combined with Replenishment, you can expect huge Willpower generation with this glyph. Although it may seem small, 15 WP on each hit adds up a lot on the long run. You generate 15 Willpower when you Arcane Barrage touches the boss and another 15 when you detonate it, so you get a total of 30 extra Willpower on each Arcane Barrage which leads to a grand total of 250 Willpower from one Arcane Barrage. If you combine this glyph with triple Arcane Barrage (read rotation section) you will get 750 Willpower in less than 5 seconds.
(3 points) Glyph of the Swift: Increases Attack Speed by 30% until Arcane Barrage detonates.
This is an important glyph in PvP, but it has minimal usage in PvE. When you use Arcane Barrage in PvE, you want to detonate it as fast as possible since you need to execute your rotation as fast as possible. In PvP, there are a lot of factors when fighting another player, so you rotation is extremely flexible which allows you to do whatever you want. Combine this glyph with Rocket Jump and you will find that your mobility is insane. In PvE, your rotation is always the same, so you cannot allow yourself to lose any time. However, this glyph is incredibly useful on the 22nd floor of Dreadspire.
Launch a weaving pair of missiles up to 30m. Each missile that strikes an enemy explodes, with a high chance of knockdown and generating 20 Willpower. Charging the skill creates 3 additional missiles.
Mana Missiles is your rotation finisher. You can use this ability in two ways: you can either instantly launch two Missiles or charge your skill for a few moments and then shoot five Missiles. Each Missile will generate 20 Willpower. There is a slight animation lock when you charge the skill. You can ignore this animation lock by chaining it from Rocket Jump, Recall, Burst Fire and Arc Bomb. (read Mana Missiles rotation section). You should not really prioritize too much on this skill for DPS, since it requires quite some time to charge unless you are building full CDR gunner which isn’t even optimal. (read gear section). Even with the triple carving glyph, Mana Missiles will still do white damage occasionally. This skill knocks down players in PvP.
(4 points) Glyph of Carving: Triples the chance to crit.
Mana Missiles by itself has a very low natural crit rate, so with this glyph, you can increase the crit rate of Mana Missiles drastically. However, your Mana Missiles will still not crit sometimes unless you’re building full crit gunner which is not optimal (read Gear section).
Lob a bomb up to 14m, which can bounce up to 3 times before exploding. On striking an enemy, the bomb generates 20 Willpower and explodes, stunning nearby enemies.
Arc Bomb is mostly a filler skill in PvE. It generates a little amount of Willpower. Arc Bomb will stun players and normal monsters (including BAMs), and the animation speed of Arc Bomb is very fast, so you can use this skill whenever you feel like it. Usually, Arc Bomb should be your lowest priority skill. Again, it has a very low crit chance unless you build full crit.
(4 points) Glyph of Power: Increases skill damage by 25%.
Arc Bomb does very minimal damage even when it crits. A 25% damage increase on one of your lowest hitting skill isn’t worth the glyph points. Unless you can guarantee a critical hit with Arc Bomb, this glyph is useless. Usually, the only time this glyph is useful would be in Vault, where bosses have very low crit resist.
(4 points) Glyph of Lingering: Increases stun duration by 50%.
In PvE, most bosses are resistant to stuns, so this glyph would be useless in these situations. In PvP and Vault, this glyph is very important in order to execute your rotation. Unless you’re trying to duo/solo schm, you shouldn’t have any use with this glyph.
(2 points) Glyph of Brilliance: Reduces MP cost by 50.
Spin and fire at the ground, damaging nearby enemies and propelling yourself in whatever direction you are facing. Use during Rolling Reload for additional distance.
Rocket Jump is your ultimate mobility skill. You can chain it with Rolling Reload to travel a very far distance. Although having a lot of mobility is good, it can also be a slight disadvantage. You don’t want to end up like this guy here. It is not an iframe, so you cannot use this skill to avoid damage. You can however time Rocket Jump properly and dodge an upcoming attack.
(3 points) Glyph of Energy: Decreases cooldown by 25%.
Combining this glyph with Battle Nostrum VI, your Rocket Jump will have a cooldown of 7 seconds. This is especially useful in this patch since most bosses tend to turn around a lot. You can use this skill to efficiently chase the boss’s back.
(5 points) Glyph of Fleetfoot: Increases Movement Speed by 50% for 5 seconds.
This is a personal preference glyph, I use it in PvP but not in PvE. In PvP, having a lot of mobility is always good, but in PvE it’s really not necessary.
Deal damage to all enemies in front of you, up to 30m, with a very high chance to crit. You are invulnerable while using this skill.
Balder’s Vengeance is the second highest hitting skill in this game. It can easily deal more than 10 million damage in a normal run. BV basically has a 100% crit rate against (almost) everything. Also, when you use Balder’s, you don’t actually have to hit the back to backcrit. The moment you activate this skill and you are facing the boss’s back, your BV will automatically backcrit even if the monster turns around.
A lot of people will disagree with me on this one, but I never use Balder’s Vengeance in normal runs since you need the 6 point glyph to efficiently use BV. I only use it in high score runs during the burn phases. The problem with this skill is that it has a very long animation time and you need Recall in order to effectively cancel the long animation which you should not do in normal runs, because Recall is mandatory in order to use triple arcane barrage. In high score slaying runs, you cannot allow yourself to use triple arcane barrage because your HB-7 will heal you above 50% hp (slaying crystal: increases crit power against monsters by X when below 50% HP). In short, I only use Balder’s Vengeance in high score runs, because I cannot use triple arcane barrage in those kind of runs.
(4 points) Glyph of Energy: Decreases cooldown by 20%.
Unless you are doing Dreadspire 2, you shouldn’t need to use this glyph. Combining this glyph with Battle Nostrum VI will put your BV on a 4 min cooldown. Most fights don’t last longer than 4 minutes, so you cannot use it twice in a fight. You are better off to use your 4 points into something else, unless you are planning on using Balder’s Vengeance multiple times in a dungeon without waiting for its cooldown (useful for Highscore runs).
(6 points) Glyph of Power: Increases skill damage by 20%.
This is glyph is necessary if you are actively using Balder’s Vengeance or else there is absolutely no point in using BV. You are better off using your Willpower on Burst Fire rather than BV if you do not pick this glyph.
Replenish 500 MP and 100 WIllpower. May eliminate cooldowns for Scattershot and Arcane Barrage (50% chance for each)
Replenishment is an important part of your rotation. It gives 500 MP, 100 Willpower, and has a 50% chance to reset Arcane Barrage and a 50% chance to reset Scattershot. Normally, you should always use Replenishment when it is off cooldown. However, there are cases**where you need to delay your Replenishment, such as when Replenishment is off cooldown but Arcane Barrage still has around 2 seconds of cooldown.
*: If you have Arcane Barrage chest roll instead of Replenishment roll.
(3 points) Glyph of Energy: Decreases cooldown by 30%.
This is a very important glyph. It gives you more uptime on your Arcane Barrage and it gives Willpower quicker. Battle nostrum VI will not reduce Replenishment’s cooldown, so it is even more important to use this glyph. This will allow your Replenishment to be on a 6 second cooldown.
(4 points) Glyph of Affirmation: Gains additional 50 Willpower when the skill is used.
This glyph is very important in PvE, because it allows you to have more uptime on Burst Fire and when you combine this glyph with triple Arcane Barrage, you can do 2 Replenishments in a row which gives a grand total of 300 Willpower.
Summon a construct to aid you, HB-7 damages nearby enemies when summoned. When you are nearby and below max HP, HB-7 aims a healing ray at you. Command: Stay/Follow, COmmand: Recall, and Command: Self-Destruct work while HB-7 is active and within 40m. If you move more than 60m from HB-7, it will teleport to your side. Lasts up to 30 minutes.
HB-7 is your robot follower. It shoots electric bombs at Arcane Barrage’s detonation point and will heal you for 4k HP per second when it isn’t shooting bombs. There are multiple skills which you can only use when HB-7 is summoned: Command: Recall, Command: Stay/Follow and Command: Self-Destruct. HB-7 will also deal a large amount of damage when initially summoned. You will be in an animation lock when you are casting the skill, however, you can cancel that animation lock with Burst Fire. Whenever you change instance, channel or log off, your robot will automatically disappear and you will need to re-summon it. This skill will knock down players and normal monsters (including BAMs) when it is summoned.
(2 points) Glyph of Power: Increases skill damage by 100%.
Probably 90% of all the gunners will exclude this glyph from their build. This glyph is VITAL for your standard rotation. The glyph description might be somewhat misleading — many people believe that it increases the damage of electric bombs. In reality, it only increases the damage for when it is summoned, which is still a very good bonus.
Summon a construct to aid you in combat. Throw ST-4 at a spot within 18m, and it will continually attack enemies within 18m for 45 secs. Command: Self-Destruct works while ST-4 is active.
ST-4 is a useful tool. You can place it anywhere you want and it counts as a body. You can use it to take debuffs (third boss of KDNM/KDHM, Perimos blue laser, Desolarus curse, Hrathgol curse). You can stun opponents with Command: Self-Destruct. Apart from that, this skill doesn’t have that many uses. Its damage is awfully bad, each turret hits will deal 3k white damage and it’ll most likely die in one hit. You shouldn’t bother glyphing this skill.
Dodge enemy attacks and eliminate the cooldown for Scattershot. Cancels all skill animations except for that of Balder’s Vengeance. You are immune to damage while Rolling.
Rolling Reload is your most important movement ability. It’s an i-frame and it’s also an animation canceller. If used in conjunction with Rocket Jump, it will allow you to travel a great distance. It also resets the cooldown of Scattershot.
(3 points) Glyph of Energy: 35% chance to eliminate cooldown.
This is a great glyph, it gives you a chance to reset your i-frame which can be extremely helpful when there are multiple upcoming attacks that you must avoid or if the boss tends to turn around often (you can reset your roll multiple times). Keep in mind that you shouldn’t rely on this glyph for your positioning, you should always assume that Rolling Reload will never reset. Think of this glyph as a luxury. Also, since you are resetting your Rolling Reload, you will also reset your Scattershot.
(3 points) Glyph of Powerlink: Increases skill damage of Scattershot by 20% for a few seconds.
This glyph is somewhat similar to Empowered Scattershot. As we do not prioritize Scattershot in our rotation, we should not have any use for this glyph unless you have extra points available.
Travel in a straight line to your HB construct, passing through enemies without effect. You must be within 40m to use this skill. Can be used while knocked down or using another skill.
Recall is your emergency i-frame (OH SHIT BUTTON). You should save this skill to dodge deadly attacks when you run out of movement skills unless you are able to play gunner at a high skill level, in which case, you should use Recall to triple Arcane Barrage. Recall is somewhat similar to Reaper’s Retribution skill as it allows you to interact with boss mechanics by negating damage which would otherwise kill you even if you try to i-frame it. Recall will simply make the damage taken equal to zero, so it’s like a “block”, which means you will still get the debuff.
(3 points) Glyph of Energy: Decreases cooldown by 20%.
This glyph is important for triple Arcane Barrage, it allows you to use it more often. It also allows you to i-frame more often (if you are not using triple AB).
- Time Bomb → HB-7 → Burst Fire
- Time Bomb → Burst Fire
- Burst Fire
- Arcane Barrage and AB resets
- Mana Missile
- Arc Bomb
* Note: It would be very wise to place Recall right next to Replenishment in your keybindings.
Arcane Barrage → Replenishment → Recall → (cast Arcane Barrage again if reset) → Replenishment → (cast Arcane Barrage if reset)
This rotation is optional, but it gives a significant boost in DPS since it has the potential to deal an extra 2-3 million damage and generate a lot of Willpower. Basically, you want to use Recall right after Replenishment in order to avoid Replenish to go on cooldown. You want to Recall 0.25 seconds after you Replenish, otherwise it will go on CD. If you do it correctly, you first Replenishment shouldn’t give you mana and the second one will give you the 400 MP. If you get mana from the first one, that means Replenish will go on cooldown. Since Replenishment has a 50% chance to reset Arcane Barrage, you may still not be able to get 3 Arcane Barrages with this rotation let alone 2 Arcane Barrages. However, you will still get the Willpower from the two Replenishments (300 guaranteed WP). The odds of getting 1 Arcane Barrage are 100%, the odds of getting 2 Arcane Barrages are 50% and the odds of getting 3 Arcane Barrages are 25%. If you do not reset any Arcane Barrage, you will generate 550 Willpower, if you reset Arcane Barrage once, you will generate 800 willpower and if you reset Arcane Barrage twice, you will generate 1050 willpower. Sometimes you can only use this rotation under certain circumstances. For example, on the second boss of FINM, you must time your Recall with the jump mechanic. Since you never know when he is going to do that mechanic, you cannot risk wasting your Recall before he does the jump. This principle can also be applied on the second boss of TSHM. In other words, you are maximizing your DPS despite being forced to use your Recall on insta-death mechanics. The purpose of this rotation is to sacrifice survivability for more damage, so you must plan ahead and react accordingly to the boss’s pattern without relying on Recall to avoid sustaining severe damage. You cannot use this rotation on Yana in TSHM/TSNM and High score runs (your HB-7 will heal you above 50% HP if you are using the Slaying crystal).
* Note: it is important to Blast (auto-attack) in between every single skill to effectively cancel out the animation lock of every skill since gunners do not have any chain skills like warriors or reapers.
** Note: Rolling Reload also counts as an animation canceller, you should always try to time you i-frame so that after casting a skill, you immediately dodge an upcoming attack while cancelling the animation lock of your skill. This trick is basically killing two birds with one stone.
Brooch → Bombardment → Arcane Barrage → Replenishment → (Arcane Barrage again if it resets) → Time Bomb → HB-7 Summon → Burst Fire → Mana Missile → Arc Bomb* (optional) → Scattershot → Arcane Barrage → Replenishment → (Arcane Barrage again if it resets) → Time Bomb → Burst Fire → Mana Missile
This combo can only be executed with full Willpower and will only work on stationary bosses like Kumas in TSHM or Desolarus in FINM. If the boss will turn around in less than 10 seconds when he is aggro’d (first boss of FINM), then you should only do the first half of this long combo (Brooch → Bombardment → Arcane Barrage → Replenishment → (Arcane Barrage again if reset) → Time Bomb → HB-7 Summon → Burst Fire → Mana Missile → ). It is the most effective DPS combo for gunners unless you are using triple Arcane Barrage. This rotation only works in non-Slaying runs.
* Note: You are only required to cast this if you are missing a 7.2% CDR roll on your weapon.
Brooch → Bombardment → Arcane Barrage → Replenishment → Recall → (Arcane Barrage again if it resets) → Replenishment → (Arcane Barrage again if resets) → Time Bomb → HB-7 Summon → Burst Fire → Mana Missile → Arc bomb* (optional) → Scattershot → Arcane Barrage → Replenishment → (Arcane Barrage again if reset) → Time Bomb → Burst Fire → Mana Missile →
This is the advanced combo of 1A that includes the usage of triple Arcane Barrage. This combo is the ultimate combo available for gunners. It lasts around 20 seconds. The chances of success are considerably low, however, when you are able to perfectly apply this rotation and reset every single of one your Arcane Barrages, you will most likely be able to deal 2 million damage per second with the BiS gear. When you successfully execute this rotation, your damage will be on par with the best reapers, slayers and brawlers. This rotation only works in non-Slaying runs.
Brooch → Bombardment → Arcane Barrage → Replenishment → (Arcane Barrage again if reset) → Balder’s Vengeance → Recall → Arcane Barrage → Replenishment → (Arcane Barrage again if reset) → Scattershot → Time Bomb → HB-7 Summon* (optional) → Burst Fire → Mana Missile → etc…
This combo is the modified version of 1A. If you are using Balder’s Vengeance in your rotation, then this is perfect against stationary bosses. If the boss is not immobile, you should only apply the first half of this combo (Brooch → Bombardment → Arcane Barrage → Replenishment → (Arcane Barrage again if it resets) → Balder’s Vengeance). You can modify this rotation to your own needs, but the idea stays the same: after Bombardment, generate as much Willpower as possible to use BV. This is the best combo for slaying high score runs.
( OR OR )* ( OR ) ( OR )
Time Bomb → HB7- Summon → Burst Fire → Mana Missile → Replenishment or AB (prioritize AB over replenishment) → AB (again if possible) or Replenishment (if you casted AB earlier) → Scattershot → Rolling Reload+Scattershot (if Replenishment is not up yet) → Replenishment → AB (if reset) → Time Bomb…
This rotation can only be done if you have Replenishment cooldown as your top chest line roll (assuming you start with full Willpower). Essentially, you are focusing on generating as much Willpower as possible to use Burst Fire as much as possible. This playstyle requires a high APM, it is significantly harder to play than rotation 1B as you must watch your Replenishment cooldown very carefully and use it off cooldown as much as possible. If played at the highest possible level (in terms of skill), this rotation will actually end up yielding more damage than rotation 1B. You can even try to use Recall → Replenishment if you feel confident enough.
*Note: there are 3 possible variants of this rotation:
- If your AB is on a 3 seconds cooldown right after your Mana Missile, cast Replenishment.
- If your AB is on a 1.5 seconds cooldown right after your Mana Missile, cast Scattershot->Rolling Reload->Scattershot.
- IF your AB is off cooldown right after your Mana Missile, cast AB->replenish.
Time Bomb → HB7-Summon → Burst Fire → Mana Missile
This is your basic rotation. Combo 1A, 1B, 1C, 1D are all based off this basic rotation. You can and you should use this combo whenever possible. It is important to note that you can only use HB-7 Summon 50% when using this rotation since it has twice the cooldown of Time Bomb. In short, without HB-7, you would want to do: Time Bomb → Burst Fire → Mana Missile. One important thing to know is that Burst Fire acts as a crit rate amplifier the more you use it. Usually, when you Burst Fire with full willpower, you get 100% crit rate on your Burst Fire at around half of your willpower. You can take advantage of this by applying this mechanic to other skills that have a delay such as Time Bomb or HB Summon. As you may know, when you cast Time Bomb, there is a delay before the bomb explodes. Before the bomb explodes, you can build up your crit rate by using Burst Fire right after you cast it, so after around 3 seconds, you are at about 100% crit rate which allows you to crit on every single one of your Time Bombs. You can also do this with HB Summon. If your ping is somewhat high, then forget about the hb-summon part and simply use the following rotation: Time Bomb → Burst Fire → Mana Missile.
* Note: Always spam Rolling Reload unless you are using rotation 2B or 2G.
Point Blank → Blast → Point Blank
This combo is only applicable if you have less than 30 ping, the timing needs to be perfect. It is best used for when you need to move a great distance in a short amount of time.
Point Blank → Rolling Reload → Point Blank
This combo is an easier and safer version of combo 2A. It is almost the same and will also allow you to have insane mobility.
Point Blank → rotate camera by 180 degrees → Point Blank
This combo is the basic Point Blank rotation. It is the only PB rotation that allows you to travel through a monster — use this if you are in front of a boss in order to get behind it.
Rolling Reload → Rocket Jump
This combo is the basic movement rotation. It allows you to travel a huge distance of around 20m.
Point Blank → rotate camera by 180 degrees → Point Blank → rotate camera by 180 degrees/hold “s” key → Rolling Reload → Rocket Jump
Advanced combo of 2C and 2D, this is the best movement combo, it allows you to travel an impressive distance of 40m.
Point Blank → Blast → Point Blank → Rolling Reload → Rocket Jump
Advanced combo of 2A and 2D, it is almost the same thing as 2E but slightly faster. Again, if your ping is above 30, do not use this combo.
Point Blank → Rolling Reload → Point Blank → (Rolling Reload again if reset) → Rocket Jump
This combo is only good if you reset your Rolling Reload. It moves you even further than combo 2E. The chance of success of this combo is 50%.
Point Blank → Blast
This combo allows you to move a short distance in a very small amount of time. It is especially useful for donut mechanics (Darkan and first boss of FINM) and will allow you to have the most uptime in your dps. Essentially, you are cancelling the animation lock of the first activation of Point Blank with Blast since without doing so, you will be stuck in that animation for two seconds. When you are doing this combo, you cannot utilize the second activation of Point Blank.
Arcane Barrage → Scattershot
You must have the Arcane Barrage attack speed glyph in order to execute this combo. This rotation is especially useful to dodge donuts (most notably Queen’s infamous in and out donut)
* Note: always try to chain your Mana Missile with one of these rotation to effectively cancel out the animation lock at the beginning of the skill’s activation in order to maximise DPS. A popular myth with Mana Missile is that you can chain Arcane Barrage with Mana Missile. This DOES NOT work, you should simply Blast to cancel Arcane Barrage’s animation lock.
Recall → Mana Missile
This combo is situational, it’s not even that good if you want to use triple Arcane Barrage since that combo requires Recall. If you do not wish to use triple Arcane Barrage, then this combo is the most effective one. This combo should only be used when you need to i-frame unblockable damage (lines at Kumas boss in TSHM or the jump mechanic at the second boss of FINM).
Rocket Jump → Mana Missile
This combo is especially good when you are repositioning with Rocket Jump (refer to mobility rotations), it is one of the most effective ways to use Mana Missile.
Burst Fire → Mana Missile
If you still have Mana Missile up, then this is the second best combo to use after 3B. Normally, after Burst Fire, your Arcane Barrage should be down and you can effectively wait for your cooldowns by finishing your rotation with a Mana Missile instead of just spamming scattershot or blast.
Tips and tricks
The hardest part of mastering gunner is positioning and it is crucial to do so. You don’t want to spend time trying to chase the boss’s back, as you will lose valuable DPS time. The only way to improve on that aspect is to practice, analyze your play and read the boss’s patterns. You want to memorize every attack pattern of a boss fight and react accordingly to it. You have to read the boss and try to go behind his back even before he makes his move.
Your movement skills all have a different purpose. Rolling Reload is supposed to be your primary way of chasing the boss’s back when in close proximity to it. Point Blank can be used in three different ways: to get closer to the boss, or to chase its back when Rolling Reload is on cooldown, or when you need to save Rolling Reload to i-frame an attack. Rocket Jump should be used to chase the boss when it walks around the room or in the worst case scenario when Point Blank and Rolling Reload are on cooldown. Scattershot can be used on certain bosses (depending on their size) to reach its back when you are right next to it or to get a better position without having to walk. Try to keep walking to a minimum and use Scattershot to move around as much as possible. Using this skill can be useful when the boss tends to turn around often, like on the first or second boss of FINM. Sometimes, you have to tank a few hits from the boss to keep Burst Firing in order to not lose the crit and damage bonus from consecutive Burst Fires. In that scenario, you should always have health potions prepared. The whole idea is to always back crit Burst Fires as much as possible.
The difference between a good gunner and a bad gunner is the amount of Burst Fires hits in a fight. Using Scattershot and Mana Missile to dodge donut mechanics is preferable as it allows you to have maximum uptime on damage. Sometimes, it is okay to sidecrit when you are in a bad position (most notably when you are facing Shandra Manaya) as chasing the back will actually decrease your DPS since you are taking too much time to move.
Your willpower is your lifeline, and managing it is extremely important. Having too much Willpower is a huge waste and not having enough is not good either. Always try to Replenish as often as possible and keep track of its cooldown. Scattershotting for Willpower isn’t bad either, just make sure you’re using it as a filler skill. Using triple Arcane Barrage is relatively important for Willpower generation; it has the potential to net an absurd amount of WP, and it will allow you to have a smooth rotation. Always try to Burst Fire when you have 50-60% Willpower.
Q: How do I calculate my Burst Fire crit rate?
A: Please refer to this calculator: http://mxth.github.io/bf/
Q: How do I make a macro for Burst Fire?
A: Please refer to this thread: http://tera-forums.enmasse.com/forums/gunner/topics/My-PvE-Gunner-guide-Knockout-patch
Q: How do you make your game run more smoothly?
A: I did a party UI fix and I also modified my s1engine. Please refer to Bernkastel’s optimization guide here: http://www.essentialmana.com/forums/#/discussion/7269/bernkastels-tera-optimization-guide
Here is a download link for my S1Engine: http://www.mediafire.com/download/hbccvhh3hgv2kv4/S1Engine.ini
Q: How much ping do you have?
A: My ping is around 30-40.