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Blackguard

Blackguard is an epic hero of the warrior class. He wields one-handed stabbing weapons and wears plate armor.

DescriptionEdit

Warrior: A powerful dark lord who focuses on a single target.

SkillsEdit

Soul Skill

Soul Rend – Stuns a target briefly and deals large shadow damage.

  • Single. Ranged. Shadow. Cost 80. Cooldown 10s.

Active

  • Double Swing – Deal physical damage to a target. Attacks twice.
  • Vicious Strike – Deal physical damage to a target and reduce its % armor. (Armor reduced also scales with hero level.)
  • Death Glare – Stun target for a long duration. While stunned, Blackguard deals +% damage to that target. (percentage scales with hero level).
  • Shadow Shroud – Increases chance to dodge the next attack.
  • Tendril of Shadow – Deal ranged shadow damage to a target; heal self for an equal amount.

Passive

  • Find Weakness – Blackguard ignores a percentage of his target's defense.
  • Deadliness – Blackguard deals +% damage to stunned targets.
  • Hell's Bulwark – Blackguard gains increased % armor and flat defense.
Actives Double Swing Vicious Strike Death Glare Shadow Shroud Tendril of Shadow
Scaling

Skill lvl

(Hero lvl)

+8 dmgper swing +9 dmg

+1% arm red

+2%

+duration

+5% +6.5 dmg
Max 105-175 120-201 dmg

34% arm red

66% 100% 103-172
Type Melee Melee Ranged None Ranged
Cooldown Short Short Short Short Short
Target Single Single Single Self Single
Element Physical Physical Stun None Shadow
Passives Find Weakness Deadliness Hell's

Bulwark

Scaling

Skill lvl

+6% +4% +2% arm

+5 def

Max 70% 68% 23% arm

99 def

Recommended Set UpEdit

SkillsEdit

The number one rule when choosing Blackguard's skills: Always, always, ALWAYS use Find Weakness, period. A constant defense reduction, especially one as significant as 70%, is HUGE. There is never an instance in which it is more practical to use both other passives instead of Find Weakness, so always, always equip it.

His other skills can suit Blackguard to a variety of other roles, making him one of the most versatile heroes in the game. Typically, Vicious Strike and Double Swing are always used. For a tank build it's most common to equip Tendril of Shadow for healing as well as Hell's Bulwark for defensive capability. For a pure DPS build, Death Glare is used in place of Tendril of Shadow and Deadliness in place of Hell's Bulwark. There are a few niche cases in which Shadow Shroud is used (primarily against bosses such as Zaluss the Demolisher) but it is far less common than the other skills.

EquipmentEdit

Weapons: A Dark Defender is recommended for a tank role, while the Piercing Blade or Forbidden Blade is recommended for a damage-dealing role.

Armor: The Shell of Protection is useful early on, but later epic armor such as the Strength of Legend are worth upgrading into.

CompositionsEdit

  • Druid/Warmaster/Blackguard/Witch has been popularly run against the guild boss at end-game levels. The Witch's Dark Arts passive applies an extremely long stun to the boss which Blackguard's Deadliness can take advantage of. Death Glare is also most useful in single enemy scenarios like the boss.
  • Cleric/Mystic/Blackguard/Druid is a preferable choice for PvE content, particularly against tough bosses in week-long campaigns such as The Crimson Masquerade. Blackguard does the bulk of the damage, while the other three heroes heal and provide various support bonuses.

Tips & TricksEdit

  • Soul Rend stuns a target for only a short duration, but this stun triggers his passive Deadliness. Try to stun a target just before Double Swing arrives.
  • Soul Rend can be combined with Tendril of Shadow and Deadliness to deal heavy ranged damage.
  • Use Soul Rend or Death Glare to buy your team time. A stunned priority target, like a Demonic Watcher or Black Fist Evoker, will have its attack cycle delayed by a few turns.
  • Soul Rend and Tendril of Shadow deal shadow damage, which can be useful against enemies with high armor.
  • If you're not under any pressure from the enemy, consider firing Soul Rend purely for damage; it's more powerful than any individual strike (except Double Swing).
  • If a taunt isn't necessary, don't be afraid to run Blackguard as your main tank. It might seem strange to have a damage dealer as a tank, but he may surprise you.
  • Tendril of Shadow recovers Blackguard's health by 100% of the damage it deals. If running Deadliness, using Soul Rend right before he uses it on an enemy with low shadow resistance will allow him to heal a massive amount of health back.

CountersEdit

  • Like any damage dealer, focus fire is your best option. He's tanky though, so if low-hanging fruit like a Cleric can be killed, take her out first.
  • Blackguard on the frontline almost certainly has high armor. Reduce his armor with a Knight's Sunder or your own Blackguard. Alternatively, you can magic damage, but Blackguard has high shadow and good fire resistance.
  • Blackguard does suffer somewhat against attack debuffs like the Samurai or damage debuffs from the Necromancer or Ninja.
  • The Necromancer is useful against Blackguard, both to weaken his damage as well as soften up his defense.
  • Unfortunately, there's a reason Blackguard is considered among the best in the game. There really isn't any surefire hard counter to Blackguard. In a stun composition, he will kill anything you put up front in a couple rotations. As a tank, he will stall most damage dealers while also providing a ton of value with his offense.

StrategyEdit

Blackguard is arguably the most powerful hero in the game, and worth purchasing from the shop as soon as possible. As an epic hero, it takes longer to collect soul stones. The earlier he is acquired, the sooner you can throw soul stones his way. Having him be up an extra half or full star for only 100k gold is a cheap price to have paid come late game.

Blackguard nominally is a warrior, a hybrid damage dealer and tank. In practice, he is among the best in class in either role, like having a tank and damage dealer together in a single hero.

As a Damage DealerEdit

Offensively, Blackguard requires no support from attack buffs, something only the Shaman, Kensai, and Barbarian can boast. Find Weakness is probably the most powerful self-attack steroid in the game and furthermore cannot be dispelled. In a stun team, Blackguard has the greatest damage bonus of any hero in the game through Deadliness and/or Death Glare.

Early weapons for Blackguard aren't that great, and a hero like the Shaman might outperform him in damage until epic weapons are acquired. The epic weapon of choice for damage dealing is the Piercing Blade; however it's not available until level 55. Forbidden Blade and Bloodletter are solid damage weapons until then.

As a TankEdit

Defensively, Tendril of Shadow makes him the only tank who can heal himself. Since he hits like a truck, he also heals for more than a Cleric's Powerful Heal—on a short cooldown. Think of Tendril of Shadow as having a second Cleric providing pure healing. This makes Blackguard great at soloing. Shadow Shroud is also useful against single targets that deal high damage, in particular at max skill level where the dodge is 100%.

Against physical compositions, he's probably more durable than any other tank in the game thanks to this self heal.

However, because he lacks a taunt, a hero like the Knight may still take precedence in the tank role. Other tanks without a taunt like the Paladin will find themselves mostly obsolete next to a Blackguard, who's nearly as tough but also acts like a "fifth hero" by filling a damage dealing role at the same time.

The Dark Defender is one of the best defensive-oriented weapons in the game, and should be a staple for any Blackguard placed in the tank role. Since it's his first good weapon available, consider taking full advantage of its defensive stats by moving your Blackguard into a tank role.

The Shell of Protection is the first good armor that can be acquired, although most upgrade to a Strength of Legend later.

Other advantagesEdit

In base stats, Blackguard has the 9th best base attack, 6th best base defense, and 4th best base health in the game. Overall, only the Valkyrie averages higher across the three categories, as well as the Templar, but only by a slight margin.

Death Glare also provides Blackguard a considerable amount of utility. It's probably the longest duration stun in the game, barring the Witch and Thief who can enhance their stuns via passive skills. This is particularly useful in the Boss Portal, or in general against tough single targets, especially in combination with Deadliness.

Summary Edit

Fighting for top damage dealer in the game, most survivability in a tank, fantastic base stats, ideal end-game equipment, and throwing some extra stun utility on top of it all, the Blackguard does pretty much everything, and counts among the best at everything. There's no reason not to make him a priority. He is guaranteed to become a core hero in most aspects of the game.

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