BEGINNER DUNGEON GUIDE
SO YOU WANT TO RUN DUNGEONS
While there is a ton of Solo Content in ESO which doesn’t require a Group, there is also a lot of Group Content. Just like any other MMO, two of the big things you will run with groups of like minded players are Dungeons & Trials.
INTRO TO DUNGEONS
Dungeons are 4 - Person Content requiring 1 Tank, 1 Healer & 2 Damage Dealers for most situations. Trials are 12 - Person Events, sometimes referred to as Raids, these typically involve 2 Tanks, 2 Healers & 8 Damage Dealers.
Both Dungeons & Trials can be run on Normal Mode or Veteran Mode, with Veteran Mode enemies having more health & doing more damage to Players. Veteran Mode also adds new Dungeon Mechanics to some Bosses, creating a more challenging experience for Veteran Players who have mastered the Normal Content.
Learning the basics of each Role & which Gear Sets work best for each is pivotal to your success in any Group Content you run.
Below is a basic run down of each role, or why not Join English Avenger on his Travels through Tamriel at www.twitch.tv/EnglishAvenger.
Dungeons make up a significant portion of the End Game Content in ESO. From the best in Class Gear like Monster Sets, to Motifs & even Housing Items. Dungeons are what most players aim for when they reach a certain point in the game.
Completing Dungeons will also help you progress the Undaunted Skill Line & unlock New Skills & Abilities to help you become even better & therefore complete even more challenging Content.
The ability to Queue for Dungeons unlocks at level 10 & to start out you will only have a few Dungeons unlocked. As you Level Up you will continue to unlock new Dungeons until you hit Level 45, which is when all Normal Dungeons are unlocked.
Once you reach Level 50 you will be able to start queueing for Veteran Dungeons bringing a whole new Challenge.
Here are some tips to keep in mind as you start running Dungeon Content in ESO.
Always make sure you have some kind of Buff Food or Drink available. This is Food & Drink you can make, get from Vendors or find while out exploring which will give you increased Stats. The Health, Magicka & Stamina you get from Food & Drink can help you survive and beat Challenging Content.
Wait for everyone to load into the Dungeon before you begin. This gives everyone time to make sure they have their Buff Food & or Drink & the right Skills & Equipment before starting. There is nothing worse than realizing you have the wrong Skills Equipped when you get into a Dungeon & not being able to change them because someone started Combat before you loaded in.
Allow everyone time to go through the Dungeon Story if they want. Especially if it's their First Time running the Dungeon which is being done. Not only does this allow New Players to Learn but it's also about common decency.
Make sure your Armour isn’t broken both at the start and throughout. Maybe you forgot to get it Repaired after a prior run or it breaks during the Dungeon, either way you need to keep an eye out for the little red Armour Symbol that pops up when Armour is broken & Repair it as needed. Before even going into a Dungeon you should make sure you have Repair Kits for this purpose. Especially when you get to Higher Level Content, as there may be a time you wind up in a really tough Boss Fight where your Armour gets broken, and not having a Repair Kit on you could mean you are unable to complete the content as a group.
Let the Tank start the fight. This allows them to get Taunts in & place the Boss where needed to help the group be successful. If you run in as a DPS or healer & start the fight you could throw the Tank off their routine & therefore cause the group to wipe.
Try not to Queue for Roles that you are not running. This can be fine to do with a group of friends where you all know what is going on, but you run the risk of forgetting that you changed your Role and Queueing later for a dungeon as a Tank, when you are actually a DPS & possibly ruining the chance at beating content as a result.
Try to ask for any Loot you are looking for at the end of the Dungeon to avoid messing up the flow of Combat as you are going through the Dungeon. It can be tempting to ask after every fight for a Specific Item, but it can also cause the team to slow down or get irritated & wind up not wanting to help you out. Don’t pressure people to give up Loot that they have which you want. If they say No then they obviously need it. They do not have to hand it over just because you ask. On the same note, do not ever feel pressured to give someone Loot you don’t want to give up. You do not have to give up your loot just because someone insists.
Try & do a Ready Check before Boss Fights, this way you can be sure everyone is ready & that someone isn’t looking in their Inventory or Skills when the fight starts. At the same time, keep an eye on chat. Sometimes real life causes someone to have to step away for a second (AFK) & if they let you know but you don’t see it you could wind up fighting with one person less.
Make sure to check the Death Screen when you die to see what killed you. It can be easy to try and blame the Tank or Healer for a death, but there are a lot of One Shot Mechanics & Area of Effect (AOE's) that can kill you if you aren’t paying attention. Don’t jump in chat as soon as you die and start throwing blame at other Members of the group as that can kill Group Morale & cause people to leave the group out of frustration, which means you will need to take the time to find a replacement or not be able to complete the content.
Lastly, make sure you have time to run Dungeon Content before jumping in. Some Dungeons can take an hour or two to complete or even longer, & if you jump in because you have 10 - 15 minutes to kill you could put another Group in a bad place by leaving part way through the Dungeon.
Below you will find some additional Tips related to each Role. Make sure to read through these and have a good grasp on each to help make your experience in Group Content the best it can possibly be.
DAMAGE DEALER (DPS)
The Damage Dealer Role is one of the easiest roles to learn, but hard to master. A solid combination of Skill Bar Rotation & proper Gear is needed to maximize the amount of damage you do to enemies. Even more important is being able to Sustain your Resources like Magicka & Stamina in a prolonged fight. If you run out of Resources, you are limited on what you can do and risk dying or getting your group mates killed.
As a Damage Dealer your primary responsibility is to continually push your DPS to try and hit the highest numbers possible. This is done using a combination of Gear Sets & Skill Bar Rotations. Use a Practice Dummy to go through Rotations & test New Skills & Abilities.
You should always be aware of Mechanics in any Dungeon you are in. Many Bosses in ESO have Area of Effect (AOE) Abilities that can kill you in One Shot, as well as attacks that can take you out if you are not Blocking when they happen. If you are running a Dungeon & are not sure of the Mechanics of a Boss, just ask in group chat what to expect.
As a DPS it is your responsibility to Resurrect (Rez) Allies who die while fighting a Boss. If someone goes down, try & bring them back up as quickly as possible. Most of the time, the Tank will be holding Aggro of enemies, giving you enough time to bring others back into the fight.
If you are in a fight & find that an enemy is coming after you instead of the Tank, run towards the Tank so they can try & grab Aggro from the enemy. If you run away from the fight with an enemy chasing you, you are not doing damage to the Boss & are outside of the range of the Healer, raising the risk that you will be killed.
Learn to Self - Heal. There are times that the Healer will be unable to Heal you due to Mechanics or other circumstances. In these times, you will need to have a Heal or Shield available to help you stay alive until the Healer is able to get to you again.
When you die, read the Death Recap Screen to see what killed you. This way you can learn and avoid that in the future.
If the Tank dies, try to Rez them as quickly as possible. If the Boss turns Aggro to you, pull them away from the Tank's body & use Self - Heals & Roll Dodging to stay alive until someone can Rez the Tank then he / she can take the Aggro back.
While 10K DPS can get you through most Normal Difficulty content, you want to push for at least 15K DPS for base game Veteran Dungeons & at least 25K for DLC Veteran Dungeons. Any less than this and you risk dying to DPS checks as well as Enrage Mechanics. More damage means more room to make mistakes.
Learn how & when to block Enemy Attacks. Blocking at the right time can mean the difference between continuing the fight & waiting for someone to Rez you.
Learn how to recognize when an enemy is Channelling an Ability & which ones can be interrupted. Interrupting an attack can mean the difference between beating content and being wiped as a group.
It is your job to stay alive. Most of the time when a Damage Dealer dies in a Dungeon it is due to standing in the (Enemy AOEs) or a One - Shot Mechanic. There is only so much the Healer can do to help, don’t blame the Healer for a One - Shot death or for failing to Heal something that is doing 5000 Points of Damage every second to you.
The Healer Role in ESO is much more than providing Heals for your Group. Managing Group Resources like Stamina & Magicka through synergies during a Dungeon or Trial is extremely important. Typically as a Healer you will want to stand in a place where you can see all Damage Dealers & the Tank and have them in front of you as many of your healing abilities are Frontal Cones. Pay close attention to any Skills you have that say that Allies can activate them for Resource Gains as these will be important Synergies that you will want to be throwing out for your fellow Group Members.
Synergies are your best friend. Use them often & place them where Group Members can activate them. Orbs, Shards, Budding Seeds & many other Abilities can be used to grant Synergies to Group Members. Make sure you read the description of all your Slotted Abilities & select several that say a Group Member can Activate them for Bonuses.
Heal first, Buff second but make sure you are always doing both. Buffs will help the DPS & Tank be more efficient at their roles therefore keeping you alive in the process.
You are not responsible for a One - Shot Mechanic killing other Group Members. DPS usually has about 18K Health & many of the Higher Level Bosses can hit them for 40 - 50K Damage. There is nothing you can do to stop this.
Combat Prayer should always be slotted somewhere in your Skills as it has a Great Damage Boost for DPS Group Members.
Encourage & remind DPS Group Members to Stack up in front of you & behind the Boss. Many of your best abilities are Frontal Cones, meaning anyone standing behind or beside you is missing out on Healing & Buffs
Elemental Drain should be slotted as it is a great way to De - Buff the Boss and help your Group Members with Magicka Sustain.
You want to run a Restoration Staff on the Front Bar & a Lightning Staff on the Back Bar. The Lightning Staff will give you Elemental Blockade, which helps a lot to provide some Damage & De - Buff to enemies.
Pay attention to the Tank. Some fights can be more difficult for them to sustain & they will be getting hit much harder & will need your help with Healing & Buffs.
Learn to recognize which Mechanics can be Purged and which ones have to be Healed in order to get through.
The Tank Role is one of the toughest, but can also be the most rewarding Role to run. As a Tank you have the task of keeping Enemies & Bosses focused away from the rest of the Group and attracting all the Damage your way. Learning to properly Taunt & the best in Class Skills for your chosen Role will help you be successful as a Tank in ESO in any content you choose to run.
As a Tank, you are the leader of the Group. You will need to be familiar with Mechanics in each Dungeon & know how to place the Bosses to set your Group up for success.
This is the most difficult Role to Master & the most rewarding Role in the game. It all starts with Taunts & knowing which ones to use and when to use them. Make sure you Slot Ransack / Pierce Armour on to the Front Bar & Inner Rage on the Back Bar. These are your foundation Skills.
You want to run Sword & Shield on the Front Bar, & Ice Staff or Lightning Staff on the Back Bar. The Destruction Staffs can apply Status Effects. Lightning Staff will allow you to set enemies Off Balance, helping DPS do more damage. Ice Staff will apply Chilling to enemies which makes them move slower, & if used with the Wall of Elements Skill, will give you & your Group a Damage Shield.
Build yur Character for Sustain, more Magicka & Stamina are just as important as Health. Most Tanks pour the majority of points into their Health Pool, with a few into Magicka & Stamina to help bring their Pools to a comfortable level. If you run out of Magicka & Stamina, Health will be the next one to run out.
Taunt the Biggest enemies first within a crowd & pull everything to you. The more condensed the Crowd is, the easier it is for DPS to take them down using AOE's. Ranged enemies won’t run to you unless you are outside their range or around a corner. Use this to pull them in & Group them up. Use abilities that will Slow down enemy movement in a crowd, keeping them grouped for as long as possible even when you are not able to Taunt all of them.
Pull Smaller Enemies (Add's) into the Boss to make it easier to take them down using AOE's that are being applied to the boss anyway.
Not all Attacks can be Blocked. Some Attacks will need to be rolled out of to avoid being knocked down or killed.
Time your Heavy Attacks between Boss Actions to keep your Resource Pools as full as possible & do not Spam your Abilities. The more you use Abilities, the faster your Resource Pools go down and if you are not Heavy Attacking in between you will run out of Resources very quickly.
Slot some Self-Heal & Shield Abilities. There are very few times you should actually need to be Healed in a fight, and this will give the Healer more time to throw down Synergies to help the Group succeed.
Every fight is unique & many have their own set of Mechanics that can be both fun & challenging. As a Tank it is your job to know what to expect in each & every fight. This means you should be running as many Dungeons as you are able & paying close attention to how each Boss fight works. It can also help to look up Dungeons you know you will be running & see what is to be expected so you can manage the fights.