Wolcen Tanky DPS Builds Guide – Best Perks, Skills, Armor

In Wolcen: Lords of Mayhem, flexibility is the name of the game. Your gear dictates your class in this Diablo clone, and your skills are leveled up by using them, meaning that you’ll naturally get stronger in the areas you choose to focus on. There are some semi-permanent choices you’ll have to make along the way, granted, but everything you do can be undone for a fee of gold or Primordial Affinity. So don’t need to feel married to a particular build!

At a very basic level, there are three broad methods of dealing damage: melee, ranged, and magic. In this guide, we offer you some direction on how to build a stout melee damage dealing tank through gear, skill choices, and perks on the Gate of Fates.

wolcen perks

Wolcen Build Guide – Best Perks for Dishing Out and Taking Damage

Wolcen uses a unique perk system called the Gates of Fate, a sprawling wheel of nodes that can be rotated to pair up your favorite trees. The best trees for dealing damage on the center-most ring are the Soldier and Sentinel trees, so this is where you’re going to want to focus as you begin your journey.

Upon every level up, you’ll be given one point to spend in the Gate of Fates. Choosing a node costs a point, and unlocks access to adjacent nodes. Unlocking the outermost node in a ring will unlock access to the next tier of nodes, but what you’ll have available to you is dependent on the positioning of the next ring in the Gate. It’s this flexibility that allows you build your character however you want in Wolcen.

So, knowing that we want to start in the Soldier and Sentinel trees for damage, here are some early perk priorities:

Soldier

  • Heavy Blows: +20% melee weapon damage, +20% critical hit damage.
  • Capable: +25% maximum health, +3% Rage cost reduction, +3% Willpower cost reduction.
  • Zealous Might: +15% attack damage, +10% critical hit damage.
  • Pain Resistance Program: +15% to all resistances score, +5% maximum health.

The above perks are the foundation of the Soldier tree, but you can specialize your build by focusing on some of the more out-of-the-way nodes here. For example, if you want to emphasize critical hit chance and damage, make your way to The Wild Card to up your crit chance by a whopping 50%. Another good choice is Second Wind, which gives you a burst heal when you get below 30% health. This is likely to trigger often as you’re going to find yourself among a lot of monsters much of the time.

Sentinel

  • Refined Technique: +20% projectile damage, +20% melee weapon damage.
  • Resilient: +20% maximum health, +10% force shield.
  • Chemically Empowered Metabolism: +15% maximum health, +15% health regeneration.
  • Precise Strikes: +15% attack damage, +15% critical hit chance.

These are the backbone of the Sentinel tree, and your other choices here are going to depend on your play style. Like attacking quickly without breaks? Work toward the Backline Raider node. Like to doge roll a lot? Get yourself over to the Pinch Runner skill.

Warmonger

  • Master of the Frontline: +20% melee weapon damage, +5% attack damage.
  • Unleashed Power: +15% attack damage.
  • Whirlwind of Power: +15% melee weapon damage.
  • Blood Rush: +10% maximum health, +35% health regeneration.

As it is in the third ring on the Gate of Fates, you’ll gain access to the Warmonger tree by activating the Zealous Might node in the Soldier tree. These perks supplement your damage dealing, and should be your first focus if you like killing things quickly. The above perks give you a foundation to build on, but you can specialize your damage dealing a bit by branching off. For example, if you like to do damage over time, grab the Blood Reaper perk, which converts 30% of all physical damage into rend damage. Bestial Frenzy increases your damage output based on the number of enemies nearby, which is ideal for our fighter.

Praetorian

  • Impervious Wall: +10% to all resistances, +10% maximum health.
  • Robust: +15% maximum health.
  • Iron Skin: +15% to all resistances.
  • Kingless Aegis: +10% block chance, and allow any weapon to block.

The Praetorian tree, which becomes available after your work through the Sentinel tree, is focused heavily on staying alive. These foundational perks increase your defensive and resistance stats, and you can enhance your blocking skills by selecting a couple other strong perks. The Sacred Oath perk applies the Weakness debuff to an enemy when you block their attacks. Weakness makes enemies take quite a bit more damage. Taking a look at the attack-focused perks of the Warmonger tree, you can see the natural synergy at play here.

Your Next Steps

From there, you’re going to have to make some tough decisions. The third ring on the Gate of Fates includes four trees that are centered around melee damage, and where you head is going to depend on your playstyle and gear.

For example, if you find yourself using a shield a lot, the Siegebreaker tree is filled with perks like Belligerent Banner and Futile Endeavor that bolster your defenses and block chances.

If you prefer a more offensive playstyle, the Arms Maester tree boosts your damage output from two-handed weapons. It also increases your damage from one-handed weapons if you’re the type to dual wield weapons.

wolcen skills

Wolcen Build Guide – The Best Skills for a Melee Damage Build

Now that you know you’ll be dealing loads of melee damage, here are the best skills that supplement this play style best. There is an element of luck involved here, though, since the Enneracts that teach skills are generally randomly dropped by enemies. Play enough and you’ll encounter what you need eventually, but just know that it might take a bit of time before these skills are available to you.

Wings of Ishmir

This build is all about jumping into the fray and taking down hordes of monsters at melee range. Wings of Ishmir is arguably the best choice when it comes to diving into the middle of a massive group of monsters. Plus, it generates a lot of Rage, which fuels the other skills you’ll be utilizing.

Bleeding Edge

You’re going to be surrounded on all sides with this build, so you’re going to need a way do deal damage in all directions. Say hello to Bleeding Edge. This skill tosses a whirling axe around in you a full circle. By leveling up this skill, you can add a stun effect, which is great for giving yourself a breather.

Sovereign Shout

Sovereign Shout buffs your attack speed by 25% and generates a decent chunk of Rage. Faster attack speed means one thing: more damage output. The faster you can swing your weapon, the more enemies you can mow down, which is what this build is all about, after all.

Bulwark of Dawn

This skill tosses down an area-of-effect that heals you while standing in it. Again, because this build is going to be surrounded on all sides by enemies almost constantly, this Bulwark of Dawn is almost essential. Dive in with Wings of Ishmir, drop the Bulwark, and get to work with Bleeding Edge. The ultimate combo.

Wolcen Build Guide – Most Important Attributes

Characters in Wolcen have four core attributes: Ferocity, Toughness, Agility, and Wisdom. Whenever you level up, you’re awarded 10 points, which you can freely allocate among the four attributes. While all character archetypes benefit from all four attributes, you should prioritize certain ones depending on your playstyle.

For builds focused on melee damage, it’s the Toughness and Ferocity attributes that you’ll be most interested in. Ferocity is concerned mostly with your attack crit chance, which is an important part of your build, especially if you picked up several perks in the Soldier and Warmonger perk trees.

Toughness is essential for keeping you alive amid giant mobs of enemies, and is made extra effective with perks from the Sentinel tree that boost your health. There are also nodes that increase your Toughness here, which will make you extra tanky in combat.

Wolcen Build Guide – Notes on Gear

This being a melee damage build, you’re going to need some melee gear. There are two ways to approach this, though. First, you can can opt for the classic one-handed weapon and shield. This is especially viable if you’ve specced heavily into the Praetorian perk tree on the Gate of Fates, as a lot of those perks increase your block chance, and reward you for doing so. If you like faster damage, though, go for a pair of one-handed weapons or a single two-handed weapon.

Whatever weapon setup you choose, though, the rest of your armor should be focused on stacking health bonuses and skills that compliment your chosen perks. Rings and amulets with bonuses to life leach pair well with the Blood Offering perk in the Warmonger tree. Any pieces with block chance bonuses have great synergy with the Praetorian tree.

And there you have it! These are the building blocks for a great damage and defense focused build in Wolcen: Lords of Mayhem. What build will you be running? Let us know in the comments section.

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Sam Desatoff

Fueled by too much coffee, Sam is a freelance writer with bylines at GameDaily, IGN, PC Gamer and more. Get in touch with him on Twitter (@sdesatoff) or email him at sdesatoff@gmail.com.

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8 Comments

  1. can you use the quintet of sundowns to allow you to use a shield with the BULWARK OF DAWN? States allows the bearer to case sacred spells.

  2. How is a melee build going to equip Bulwark of Dawn? You’d have to either equip a staff instead of a weapon or a catalyst in your off-hand instead of a shield. And this is going to gimp some aspect of your build, I’d think. I’ve been playing non-stop for the last 2 days so I’ll have to look at this some more.

    1. Some unique shields allows the user to cast sacred spells such as bulwark. Builds that mix melee and magic are focused generally around those unique items.

  3. Sorry but this guide is not correct for the 1.0 release. Most perks have been changed and/or nerfed, and leveling up gives just one point.

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