Divinity Original Sin 2 features a handful of character classes but having a Tank is insanely valuable. Here’s how to build one of the best possible.
By Rhenn Taguiam
Published Apr 18, 2021
Fans of tactical RPGs appreciate?Divinity Original Sin 2?for its remarkable depth in character customization. After all, with learnable Skills, players can tailor their party’s skillset to accommodate any challenge they face. Thing is, RPG fans might resort to the basics – why settle for all-rounders, when roles exist to maximize character strengths? And what better role to prioritize first than the straightforward Tank, right?
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Interestingly, characters easily become frontline fighters thanks to the Larian Studios RPG’s straightforward Skills system. However, certain tweaks can help melee warriors become behemoths in both defense and damage mitigation. How can Tanks achieve this kind of mastery?
Players may as well pick a Starting Class to use as a template for the Tank they’re perfecting for much later in the game. Both these Class suggestions come with the Opportunist Talent, letting them perform Attacks of Opportunity to nearby opponents that try to move away from melee range.
In this regard, the Knight easily becomes the ideal Starting Class. It comes with three Warfare Skills that immediately let Tanks tackle short to mid-range incursions more aggressively: Battering Ram (rush), Crippling Blow (stun), and Battle Stomp (mid-range stun).
Meanwhile, the Fighter fits a more defensive Tank build. They come with mid-ranged attacks and a defensive buff that enable the Tank to prepare for battles before engaging. These include Battle Stomp (mid-range stun), Bouncing Shield (long-range AOE), and Fortify (buff).
When building the perfect Tank, players need to tackle the right Attributes. Regardless of the combat approach, Tanks need to have high Strength and Constitution to boost their survivability as much as possible. In the case of Constitution, each increase gives players a 7-percent Vitality boost and leads to stronger Shields. This can help accommodate more defensive builds while also letting aggressive builds sponge more damage.
Likewise, each Strength increase gives a 5-percent damage boost to Swords, Maces, and Axes. Higher Strength also gives access to Heavy armor capable of boosting Physical Armour. Since the Warfare School utilizes Strength by default, aiming for high Strength can make for a straightforward yet relatively safe Tank build. Pure attacking power alone can help Tanks take on foes without relying on complicated Source abilities and other Skills.
Tanks might want to invest in Single-Handed for a more optimized and balanced build. After all, each point in Single-Handed boosts Damage and Accuracy by 5-percent, making this Combat Ability perfect for landing more hits to opponents especially when outnumbered.
Granted, Two-Handed also boosts Damage?and Critical Multiplier by the same amount. Unlike Single-Handed, Two-Handed’s perks guarantee more “punch” whenever Critical Hits connect. However, Tanks might find it riskier to bank on high-hitting Criticals instead of just ensuring a guaranteed hit with middling DPS. As such, Single-Handed is easily the safer choice for Tanks who want to maximize their turn in every round.
Unlike?Skills that give characters an advantage in terms of spells and combat techniques, Defence Abilities diversify the way Tanks can soak damage on the battlefield. For instance, every point in Leadership benefits nearby allies?with?2-percent Dodging and 3-percent added Resistances. This allows Tanks to complement melee DPS builds.
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Meanwhile, each point in Perseverance restores 5-percent Armour when recovering from Frozen or Stunned (Magic), or after being Petrified or Knocked Down (Physical). Lastly, each point in Retribution reflects 5-percent damage to attackers, easily punishing foes for even trying to engage the Tank in combat.
Players who equip Shields alongside their favorite weapons might notice two things: they get a boost in?Armour, and they also get Shields Up (Special Skill). This Skill consumes 2AP for restoring the Physical and Magical Armour of the caster’s Shield. This might seem too much for a 2AP-Skill, but it can become a life-saver in emergencies.
Essentially, Defensive Tanks can use Shields Up to immediately restore Armour lost in the middle of combat. This fits clutch situations where a fully-Armoured Tank can soak damage while the rest of their allies heal or reposition. Given the defensive advantage of Shields, this immediately complements the Single-Handed Ability.
Of the elemental Skill Schools in?Original Sin 2, it’s Geomancer that has the biggest ties to defensive strategies. Much of its?Skills either set defensive buffs or manipulate the battlefield to the advantage of the Geomancer’s allies. In its most basic sense, Defensive Tanks can boost their defenses with Fortify (add Physical Armour) and Mend Metal (nearby allies regain Physical Armor).
However, Geomancer gives Tanks other tactical opportunities as well. For instance, Corrosive Touch (Geomancer 1) destroys Physical Armour upon touch, while Reactive Armour (Geomancer 2) and Poison Wave (Geomancer 2) damage surrounding foes.
While a Pre-Made Origin gives players access to one of six dedicated narratives for the game, technical players may want to use a Custom Origin for their Tanks. Like all Origins, a Custom Origin has a Special Skill exclusive to them. For Custom Origins, this Skill is called Dome of Protection, something perfect for defensive builds.
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At its core, the Dome of Protection summons a magical field that boosts elemental resistances and restores the Armor of allies in that area. This is perfect for Tanks who need to give melee allies nearby a quick buff against more powerful opponents. As a plus, this?Skill works for up to 13-meters, perfect for Tanks who want to buff allies from afar. When paired with a Class like a Knight or Fighter, the Dome of Protection can easily enable Tanks to become both damage soakers and emergency buffers.
Range is an important aspect of?Original Sin 2’s combat, meaning a lot of tactical decisions hinge on how fast a character can move somewhere. While Warfare doesn’t offer a ton of mobility options, it does offer some of the most diverse movement Skills out there. Tanks should capitalize on this limited mobility to their advantage.
For instance, even leaping with a Phoenix Dive (Warfare 1) creates a fire surface on the destination, damaging everything near it. Additionally, Battering Ram (Warfare 1) can Knockdown all enemies while traveling in a straight line. Meanwhile, Blitz Attack (Warfare 2) attacks up to two targets towards a destination. To those who don’t want to move, even Bouncing Shield (Warfare 1) can reach targets in mid-range. These Skills also explain why Starting Classes like Knights and Fighters?also become easily versatile despite being melee powerhouses.
Thanks to the Warfare School, a Tank can capitalize on a lot of stun-like statuses to stop enemies from moving. Theoretically, the right Warfare Skill can help Tanks set up enemies for Mages and Rogues to kill with brutal combos.?In terms of stuns, Tanks can inflict?debuffs in both close range (Battering Ram, Empower, Crippling Blow) and long-range (Battle Stomp). The awesome part here is that Tanks can use these Skills in as early as Warfare 2, with Empower only requiring Warfare 5.
Tanks themselves can finish fights after they stun their opponents. With the right Warfare investment, they can deal devastating damage with Whirlwind (Warfare 2) and Onslaught (Warfare 3). This is even better when buffed?with Enrage (Warfare 2) or Thick of the Fight (Warfare 3).
MMO players know that Healers are expected to heal Tanks first before other party members. However, given the flexibility of?Original Sin 2, Tanks should try to avoid needing the heal in the first place. Remember, characters rely on limited Action Points in battle. Therefore, if a Healer can contribute to DPS, the faster the battle ends – which is intuitively more important.
In that regard, Tanks should invest in both Consumables and a reliable healing Skill to boost their survivability. Outside the abundance of potions in the game, good ol’ First Aid (Huntsman 1) is always a reliable tool. This emergency heal won’t just give some Vitality but also cures most status effects.
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About The Author
(565 Articles Published)
Rhenn is a Manila-based content writer with a love for all things geek and pop culture, and science and technology. He has a BA Journalism degree, and has since then pursued making content about geek culture. Rhenn used to write for a couple of geek and gaming publications, and also served as editor-in-chief for Philippines-based What’s A Geek!. He constantly plays video games but also takes the time to try out older titles. If he’s not playing video games, he’s probably playing TTRPGs.
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