The ESO Templar is no stranger to Restoration magic, but this class is far more than a run-of-the-mill paladin lookalike. As with the other playable classes in Elder Scrolls Online, the Templar is entirely configurable to your playstyle. It’s possible to create any kind of Templar you’d like, whether that be a gilded warrior who also keeps the party healed (like a traditional paladin), or a swaggering rogue who also wields the destructive power of the sun.
But how does one create a DPS Templar archmage with the damage-dealing capabilities of Mehrunes Dagon in Elder Scrolls Online? By the Eight Divines, it’s simple! Just dump as many points into Spell Damage, Spell Critical, and Spell Penetration as you can. Apply Max Magicka and Spell Resistance liberally, grab a Destruction Staff, and you have yourself a DPS Magicka Templar that can pack a serious punch — either solo, or in dungeons and trials.
If you have the hunger for holy justice and are looking to create the ultimate DPS Magicka Templar for PVE content in Elder Scrolls Online, read on!
Disclaimer: This guide expects that you’ve leveled a Templar to level 50, and have achieved a Champion Rank of at least CP160. Each of the equipment pieces, items, and skills referred to throughout this guide are specifically geared to ESO characters of that level and Champion Rank, or higher.
Attribute Point Allocation
In ESO, you get a total 64 attribute points to dole out over the course of a character’s lifetime. Attribute points can only go in three directions in Elder Scrolls Online: Health, Magicka, and Stamina. These are earned during the journey from level 1 to 50, and though you may be tempted to spread them out, that’s not ideal. When you build a Magicka-based DPS character like our DPS Magicka Templar, you should comfortably pour all 64 attribute points into Magicka.
The sole idea here is to max out your Maximum Magicka stat. There are two reasons you want to do this.
Reason #1: Higher Maximum Magicka means you won’t run out of Magicka as quickly in the heat of combat.
Reason #2: Your Maximum Magicka score directly affects how powerful your spells and Destruction Staff attacks are. The philosophy of maxing out your Maximum Magicka spills out into virtually every other part of this guide, so it’s an important concept to understand early.
And on that note, here’s why the Spell Damage, Spell Critical, Spell Penetration, Spell Resistance stats are important.
Spell Damage: The base amount of damage you deal (or health you heal) with your spells.
Spell Critical: The percent chance your spell will do critical (50% extra) damage or healing.
Spell Penetration: This determines how much of your spell is mitigated by a target’s armor score.
Spell Resistance: How much spell damage your armor mitigates. Dodge rolling, blocking, and area-of-effect spells allow you to manage incoming Physical damage in most scenarios, aside from when you face down a tough opponent with a ranged weapon. The attacks that will most likely kill you as a spellcaster in Elder Scrolls Online are powerful ranged spells.
Best Races to Choose
Race matters more for sheer utility in Elder Scrolls Online than it does in, say, Final Fantasy 14. Your racial skills are a critical part of your build, so it’s important to choose wisely. Here are the three best races to choose for our DPS Magicka Templar build. Do keep in mind that race isn’t a must for this build. You can opt to play any of the ESO races and still pull off a pretty good Magicka Templar. Ultimately this decision only makes any kind of difference during trials and other endgame activities.
- High Elf:
- Destruction Staff skill levels up 15% faster, which is great early on.
- Templar spells trigger an effect that restores 640 Magicka; this effect has a 6 second cooldown.
- +2000 Maximum Magicka.
- +258 base Spell Damage.
- Light Armor skill levels up 15% faster, which is great early on.
- +2000 Maximum Magicka.
- +2310* base Spell Resistance and +100 Magicka Recovery.
- Spells cost 7% less to cast.
- Dark Elf:
- +1875 Maximum Magicka.
- +2310 base Flame Resistance, which can make this build tankier in general, as some of the hardest-hitting enemies in ESO use Flame magic.
- +258 base Spell Damage.
*= This value is doubled when you’re Burning, Chilled, or Concussed.
Disclaimer: These values reflect maxed out racial skills. New characters do not begin the game with these bonuses and must earn them by leveling up and allocating skill points into racial skills.
Gear in Elder Scrolls Online is broken out into armor, weapons, and accessories. Abiding by the continued emphasis on boosting the previously mentioned spell related stats and Maximum Magicka as high as possible, all of your equipment should raise points in these attributes. The best trial gear sets in Elder Scrolls Online change from patch to patch, but it’s reasonable to wrap this understanding around what’s available to you as you optimize your DPS Magicka Templar post-CP160.
Note that you should primarily be decked out in Light Armor and only wield Destruction Staves, since this DPS Magicka Templar build relies on passive bonuses granted by the Light Armor and Destruction Staff skill lines.Some high level players opt for a single piece of Medium and Heavy Armor as well to gain a small bonus from their respective passive skills. Though the buffs are small, it can be more optimal.
Consider this an optimal non-trial endgame loadout that works well for our DPS Magicka Templar build:
- Shoes of a Mother’s Sorrow
- Sash of a Mother’s Sorrow
- Jerkin of Vicious Death
- War Maiden’s Hat
- Epaulets of a Mother’s Sorrow
- Gloves of Vicious Death
- War Maiden’s Breeches
- War Maiden’s Necklace
- Rings of a Mother’s Sorrow (2x)
- War Maiden’s Inferno Staff (Skill Loadout 1)
- War Maiden’s Ice Staff (Skill Loadout 2)
We recommend upgrading each piece of gear to either Purple (Epic) or Yellow (Legendary) quality. Doing so will vastly improve the performance of not only the individual piece of gear, but the stat bonuses for the entire set as a whole. You can either do this yourself as a Rank 10 Clothier (Light Armor), Woodworker (Destruction Staff), or Jewelry Crafter (Accessories). You can also have another player make the improvements for you, given that you haven’t equipped the gear yet. Doing so locks the gear to your account.
The most important traits for a DPS Magicka Templar’s gear are as follows:
The best enchantments you can apply to your gear for this DPS Magicka Templar build are as follows:
Armor & Accessories: Maximum Magicka Enchantment.
Weapons: Absorb Magicka Enchantment.
Finally, gear sets only offer bonuses for up to five pieces of set-matched gear. Remember to mix and match your sets based on what gives you the most benefit, because the best way to juice all 12 equipment slots is by equipping gear from different sets in groups of 5, 4, or even 3!
Passive Skill Loadout
The hardest part is over, so you can exhale now! Skills are, luckily, easier to deal with than gear in Elder Scrolls Online. To build a proper DPS Magicka Templar, you’ll want to max out every passive Templar skill. Also, max out every passive in the Destruction Staff, Light Armor, and Racial skill lines. Those are as important as your class skills, if not more so. By level 50, you should be able to fully flesh out each of these passives at minimum.
Optimal Skill Rotation
Unlike in Final Fantasy 14, you can execute combos in whichever order you like. Granted there’s a specific way that you’ll want to place active skills into your skill bar. This is because certain skills carry certain passive benefits, or activate specific Templar passive skills by simply existing on your skill bar. The interplay between spells and regular light attacks is also important to understand, and that’s detailed more below.
Don’t fret, however. There are no global cooldown timers to contend with, and our DPS Magicka Templar build comes with enough spells to blast through any situation like a Swiss Army knife that simultaneously shoots fireballs and healing spells.
Skill Loadout 1
- Puncturing Sweep (Puncturing Strikes Morph)
- Dark Flare (Solar Flare Morph)
- Purifying Light (Backlash Morph)
- Channeled Focus (Rune Focus Morph)
- Radiant Aura (Restoring Aura Morph)
- Solar Prison (Nova Morph)
Skill Loadout 2
- Vampire’s Bane (Sun Fire Morph)
- Pulsar (Impulse Morph)
- Blazing Spear (Spear Shards Morph)
- Radiant Ward (Sun Shield Morph)
- Radiant Aura (Restoring Aura Morph)
- Practiced Incantation (Rite of Passage Morph)
As touched upon previously, we highly recommend you integrate light and heavy attacks into your skill rotation. The general rule is to use a light attack from your Destruction Staff between every spell, which takes advantage of ESO’s animation cancelling system and allows you to be speedy in your DPS output.
You should only use heavy attacks (by holding down the left mouse button or right trigger) to refill your Magicka or knock over an unbalanced enemy. Heavy attacks on their own don’t do enough damage for you to need to worry about weaving them into your light attack-spell combos.
Champion Point Allocation
Champion Points allow you to open your build up to even more customization. That said, you shouldn’t stray from the goal of maximizing the integral spell damage stats and Maximum Magicka. Here are some general guidelines in selecting the best perks to spend your Champion Points on when building the optimal DPS Magicka Templar.
The Thief: Take points in The Lover and The Shadow.
- Befoul, Tumbling, Arcanist, Tenacity.
The Warrior: Take points in The Steed and The Lady.
- Ironclad, Spell Shield, Resistant, Light Armor Focus, Elemental Defender.
The Mage: Take points in The Apprentice and The Atronach.
- Elfborn, Staff Expert, Master-at-Arms, and Spell Erosion.
Note that you’ll hit a point of diminishing returns after about 60-70 Champion Points allocated into any given perk. After that, continuing to add more Champion Points to that perk gradually loses effectiveness until the gains are unnoticeable.
We recommend leveling up each of these skills in tandem. Keep them around the same Champion Points to get more return on investment. You can always pay some gold to reassign them later.
Food is the one place where you’ll want to bolster your Maximum Health as much as possible. Crusty Bread is extremely easy to find and fulfills this goal perfectly, offering a Maximum Health boost of +6277 for 35 minutes. If you can hack it, however, the Crown Fortifying Meals that come from Crown Crates and daily login bonuses are also very good for what they offer at +4462 Max Health, +4105 Max Magicka, and +4105 Max Stamina over two hours.
Crown Tri-Restoration Potions are the most powerful and useful potions that you can hotkey in Elder Scrolls Online. Using one restores 9122 Health, 7582 Magicka, and 7582 Stamina while also increasing the recovery rate of those resources by 20% for 47.3 seconds. Like Crown Fortifying Meals, Crown Tri-Restoration Potions come from the Crown Store or as a daily login reward.
Otherwise, the best potions are crafted CP150 Health and/or Magicka restoration potions, preferably with additional effects that increase Max Magicka or other Spell-related stats. Crafted potions can be a nuisance to deal with because of potential negative side effects, but the negatives are avoidable if you max out the Snakeblood passive Alchemy skill.
The best Mundus Stones to choose from are either The Shadow or The Lover. The Shadow offers a 9% boost to Spell Critical, while The Lover offers a +2752 boost to Spell Penetration. You can find The Shadow and The Lover Mundus Stones in these following locations:
The Shadow: Greenshade, Rivenspire, Shadowfen, Cyrodiil.
The Lover: Auridon, Glenumbra, Stonefalls, Cyrodiil.
Set Out and Conquer Tamriel, One Chapel at a Time
Now that your DPS Magicka Templar is complete, it’s time to go forth and start doing things. By the time you hit CP400+, you can take on large groups of enemies at once with Blazing Spear and Radiant Ward — perfect for soloing public dungeons. Would you rather go questing? This build is equipped to do loads of damage to single targets like quest bosses, all while you’re hunkered down inside of your trusty protection rune via Channeled Focus.
Prefer to steamroll every monster that crosses your guildmates’ paths in the latest trial? As you approach CP600+, that won’t be a problem. This DPS Magicka Templar build can do almost anything. And with it, you can do almost anything. You can even make 10,000 gold per hour. Now get out there and spread the word of Talos!