Guide:DRG Ability Guide by Urthdigger

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CAUTION!

This article is only a guide. Information expressed in a guide is usually more opinion than fact and should be taken as such. Guides are written by players, based upon their experiences, successes and mistakes, and are meant to aid other players. However, there may be differing opinions than those expressed in a guide.
Strategies and information in guides may not work for everyone.

Welcome to my guide for Lancer/Dragoon. Unlike other guides, this won't be focused on endgame. Rather, I will be going through each ability level by level covering the uses they have, and where to fit them into your rotation. This guide is based on the information on 4.0 received from the Media Tour and will be updated accordingly upon release. Likewise, I do not claim to be the best DPS ever, and I am always open to constructive criticism on how I can better use these abilities.

A Realm Reborn[edit]

Level 1: True Thrust[edit]

Your basic attack, with a potency of 150 and a TP cost of 60. This is your basic move, 50% stronger than auto-attacks. By itself, that's 150 potency per global cooldown (GCD) and 2.5 per TP spent. At this stage not much you can do but spam this.

Level 4: Vorpal Thrust[edit]

Your first combo move. Costing 50 TP, like all combo moves this deals a mere 100 potency when used improperly, but when used after True Thrust (denoted as True Thrust -> Vorpal Thrust) it increases to 240 potency (4.8 per TP). This leads to a total of 390 potency for 2 GCDs and 110 TP, or 195 potency per GCD and 3.5 per TP.

Level 6: Impulse Drive[edit]

An alternate combo starter, this deals 190 potency for 60 TP (3.16 per TP). For the moment it won't see much use, as it doesn't deal more damage than your Vorpal Thrust combo. Set it for now and remember it for later.

Level 8: Second Wind[edit]

Your first shared role ability. You're limited in how many of these can be set (currently unknown how it scales, but assuming for now it will be one every 5 levels for classes and one every 10 levels for jobs until level 50, like 2.x cross-class abilities), so choose wisely.

Second Wind is a 500 potency heal based on your attack power that can only be used on yourself every 2 minutes. It's quite useful when soloing or to recover after AoE attacks, but in a party with a decent healer this may see little use.

Level 10: Heavy Thrust[edit]

This weaponskill is NOT part of a combo, rather intended to be used between other combos. It deals 100 potency for 60 TP if used incorrectly (1.6 per TP), but if used from the monster's flank the damage increases to 180 (3 per TP). Now, this is even less than Impulse Drive, so why would you use this? For the additional effect: All damage you deal is increased by 15% for 30 seconds. Try to always keep this buff up, refreshing it between combos if it's ever 4 seconds or less.

As your first positional attack, a little advice for nailing these: The targeting ring below an enemy has a break in it, which indicates the rear of the monster. The unbroken sections to either side of the break count as the flank. Try to get in the habit of staying near the break so you can quickly swap between flank and rear attacks as necessary.

So, as a refresher: Start with Heavy Thrust, then perform True Thrust -> Vorpal Thrust about 4-5 times until your buff is at 3 or less seconds, then repeat.

Level 12: Arm's Length[edit]

Your second shared role ability, this 60 second cooldown grants a buff that inflicts anyone that hits you with a 30% slow, while also nullifying knockback or draw-in effects. Useful when soloing, or on fights where you know something will knock you around.

Level 15: Piercing Talon[edit]

Your first ranged weaponskill, this deals 120 potency for a massive 130 TP (0.92 per TP). The sole advantage this has is a range of 15 yalms, allowing you to pull monsters that may be in dangerous locations, or get in a first hit while you're closing distance. It's VERY inefficient for TP however, so in situations where you find yourself running low on TP (Primarily large groups where you use your AoE abilities later on) it's better not to use it.

Level 16: Leg Sweep[edit]

Your third shared role ability, this 40 second cooldown allows you to stun a target. While this can be used to keep them from hitting the tank, it's not terribly effective especially as monsters will quickly gain resistance, with the duration shortening until they're immune, though it wears off with time. The most effective use of Stun is to interrupt an enemy's weaponskill or spell. This can prevent many deadly or annoying moves from going off, and even many bosses can be interrupted in this manner.

Level 18: Life Surge[edit]

This ability has a 50-second cooldown, ensures a critical for the next weaponskill you do, and absorbs the damage done (with a cap of 10% of your HP). This is a handy tool both for increased damage and added survivability, and should be used just about every time it's available. However, due to the multiplicative value of criticals, you do NOT want to waste this on a lesser weaponskill: Save it for your most potent combo finisher, which is Vorpal Thrust at this moment. As abilities are not tied to the global cooldown, you can use this directly after True Thrust before Vorpal Thrust is ready to use.

Level 20: Diversion[edit]

Your fourth shared role ability, this 2 minute cooldown halves your enmity generation. It won't due anything to enmity you've already accrued, but using it alongside damage buffs to offset the increased enmity from the extra damage can help your tank damage more instead of fighting for hate.

Level 24: Invigorate=[edit]

Your fifth shared role ability, this 2 minute cooldown immediately restores 400 TP. While not useful with your rotation so far, this will become invaluable once you start using Area of Effect (AoE) abilities and gaining more spell speed. So long as this is available, you're not low on TP yet.

Level 26: Full Thrust[edit]

Your first combo finisher, this weaponskill deals 440 potency for 50 TP if used properly (8.8 per TP). This is a total of 830 potency over 3 GCDs and 160 TP, or 276 per GCD and 5.18 per TP.

With a new strongest weaponskill your combo changes a little: You now want to save Life Surge for Full Thrust, and use Heavy Thrust any time the buff has 7 or so seconds left (you want to ensure you still have it up for Full Thrust.)

So, as a refresher, start with Heavy Thrust, then do True Thrust -> Vorpal Thrust -> Life Surge -> Full Thrust, then keep repeating the combo until Heavy Thrust has 5 or so seconds left and repeat, using Life Surge between Vorpal Thrust and Full Thrust whenever it's available.

Level 30: Blood for Blood[edit]

This ability has a recast of 80 seconds, and increases all damage dealt by 15% and damage received by 10% for 20 seconds. In parties where a tank is getting hit this will always be a net increase and should always be used when up (unless the monster will die or become invulnerable soon). Even when soloing, you're more likely to kill a foe before it kills you when using this. That all said, in cases where you have more sources of damage than just your own, like NPCs in FATEs or quests, you may wish to not use this if you're tanking the monsters.

As far as rotations go, use this either between Heavy Thrust and True Thrust, or between True Thrust and Vorpal Thrust, and ideally time things so you'll use a Life Surged Full Thrust sometime during its duration.

Level 30: Jump[edit]

You're now officially a Dragoon. This ability is on a 30-second cooldown and deals 250 potency damage to a target up to 20 yalms away for free. Well... mostly free. It has no casting time of its own, but the lengthy animation moves you around, and you can't manually change your position during it: You'll return to wherever you were when you used it afterwards, making it difficult to dodge AoE attacks aimed at you if they begin casting right as you use this. Regardless, try to use this whenever it's up, and in-between your weaponskills like any other ability.

So, as a refresher, start off with Heavy Thrust -> Blood for Blood -> True Thrust -> Jump -> Vorpal Thrust -> Life Surge -> Full Thrust, before moving back to using your Full Thrust Combo until Heavy Thrust needs to be refreshed, using Blood for Blood and Jump whenever they're available, and Life Surge before Full Thrust.

Level 32: Bloodbath[edit]

Your sixth shared role ability, this 90 second cooldown converts a portion of the physical damage you deal into HP. Another defensive cooldown, this is mostly useful for soloing, don't expect to use it much in parties.

Level 35: Elusive Jump[edit]

This ability has a 1-minute cooldown and allows you to jump 15 yalms backwards, removing Heavy or Bind and reducing enmity by half. It's useful if you're closing to pulling hate on a monster, or if you need to dodge attacks (especially if heavied or bound). For a slightly more advanced use, after dodging large AoEs, you can turn your back to the boss and use this to get back in melee range faster and definitely more stylishly.

Level 36: Goad[edit]

Your seventh shared role ability, this 3 minute cooldown restores the TP of a fellow party member over time for 30 seconds. Only useful in parties, and only useful if one of your party members is using a lot of physical AoE attacks. That said, when it is useful it's VERY much appreciated. Ideally in runs with two melee and a lot of large pulls, you and your partner should use this one each other so you can keep using AoE attacks.

Level 38: Disembowel[edit]

Get ready to dust off Impulse Drive, this deals 230 potency for 50 TP (4.6 per TP) when used after Impulse Drive (total of 420 potency for 2 GCDs and 110 TP, or 210 per GCD and 3.8 per TP), but primarily you want to use it for the additional effect of reducing the target's piercing damage by 5%. This not only increases your own damage, but also any physical ranged DPS in the party. It has a duration of 30 seconds, same as Heavy Thrust, and should always follow it.

So, to refresh: Heavy Thrust -> Impulse Drive -> Disembowel -> Blood for Blood -> True Thrust -> Jump -> Vorpal Thrust -> Life Surge -> Full Thrust. Then go back to doing your Full Thrust combo, refreshing Heavy Thrust and Disembowel whenever Heavy Thrust is 5 seconds or less, and using your abilities between weaponskills, with a priority of Blood for Blood, Life Surge if before Full Thrust, then Jump.

Level 40: Feint[edit]

Your eighth shared role ability, this 2 minute cooldown lowers a foe's strength and dexterity by 10% for 10 seconds. The duration isn't very long, so this is mostly used to mitigate powerful physical moves some boss monsters may have. Knowledge of the fight helps to use this effectively, but it's a potent way to help the tank when used properly.

Level 40: Doom Spike[edit]

Your first AoE weaponskill, this deals 130 potency for 130 TP (1 per TP) against a single target. It deals damage to all enemies in a line in front of you though, effectively multiplying your total damage for each enemy hit. Against 3 or more foes it will outdamage your Full Thrust combo, and at 6 or more foes it is actually more efficient per TP.

Against 3 or more foes, put up Heavy Thrust, then keep using this instead of using your Disembowel or Full Thrust combos. Use your abilities as normal, except use Life Surge before Heavy Thrust (The effect will only trigger on the first enemy hit with Doom Spike, for a mere 130 potency compared to Heavy Thrust's 180). Keep this up until you're low on TP then swap to your single target combo, unless you're able to hit 6+ mobs, then simply run yourself dry.

Level 44: Crutch[edit]

Your ninth shared role ability, this 90 second cooldown removes Bind and Heavy from a target party member other than yourself. Literally unusable solo, this is a highly situational skill that depends on bosses using Bind or Heavy as part of their mechanics.

Level 45: Spineshatter Dive[edit]

This ability has a minute cooldown, and deals 200 potency of damage for "free" to a single foe within 20 yalms. Unlike Jump, you'll stay at the monster's position rather going back to your original location, making it a bit less prone to forcing you to eat AoE attacks (Unless the monster uses one centered on itself right when you fire this...) and allowing you to use it to quickly get within range of any monster. For extra style points, if your ping allows you to use two abilities between weaponskill try popping Elusive Jump before using Spineshatter Dive to dump enmity and deal free damage in one snazzy combo. In addition to all this, it inflicts Stun, which is a double edge sword. On the plus side, this allows you to interrupt enemy attacks without using Leg Sweep. On the downside, this means on any monster that has attacks you wish to stun, you need to NOT use this for damage to keep the mob from building stun resistance.

So, to refresh: On monsters where stun is needed, do your old rotation if stun is required. If it's not (Monster has no super dangerous moves or is immune to stun), then go with Heavy Thrust -> Impulse Drive -> Blood for Blood -> Disembowel -> Jump -> True Thrust -> Spineshatter Dive -> Vorpal Thrust -> Life Surge -> Full Thrust. Then go back to doing your Full Thrust combo, refreshing Heavy Thrust and Disembowel whenever Heavy Thrust is 5 seconds or less, and using your abilities between weaponskills, with a priority of Blood for Blood, Life Surge if before Full Thrust, then Jump.

Level 48: True North[edit]

Your tenth shared role ability, this 2.5 minute cooldown removes all direction requirements, allowing you to get full damage from all your weaponskills regardless of direction. This is most useful for fights where the foe just won't sit still or is otherwise difficult to hit from the required directions.

Level 50: Chaos Thrust[edit]

This weaponskill is both a combo finisher AND a positional weaponskill. When used after a comboed Disembowel AND from behind a monster, it deals 270 damage for 50 TP (5.4 per TP). If you fail the positional you do 50 less potency, so it's not the end of the world, but still try to hit it. Free damage is free damage. The main reason to use this weaponskill is for the DoT effect, 35 potency for 30 seconds. And with DoTs hitting ever 3 seconds, that means an extra 350 potency to this, taking it up to 620 potency if the monster will live for 30 seconds. This makes it 1040 potency over 3 GCDs and 160 TP, or 346 per GCD, and 6.5 per TP. You should always use this after Disembowel, and thus always apply this alongside putting up your Heavy Thrust whenever it's time to refresh it.

Level 50: Dragonfire Dive[edit]

This ability is your most potent jump available: 300 potency (more than jump!), 20 yalm range (like all of them), while also hitting every other mob within 5 yalms of your target (Massively increasing the damage in groups), leaves you at your target's position like Elusive Jump, but doesn't inflict Stun so you can freely use it (and now you can quickly use Elusive Jump to dump enmity and then get back into melee range instantly even on monsters you need to save stun on.) All this comes at a price: A 2-minute recast timer. You'll want to save this for groups of monsters if possible, but if on a trial or just the final boss of a dungeon, go ahead and use this like any other jump for free damage.

So, for AoE, put up Heavy Thrust, pop Dragonfire Dive, then get into position and spam Doom Spike until it's time to refresh Heavy Thrust. Swap to single target when low on TP, unless there's 6+ then run yourself dry.

For single monsters, Heavy Thrust -> Impulse Drive -> Blood for Blood -> Disembowel -> Dragonfire Dive -> Chaos Thrust -> Jump -> True Thrust -> Spineshatter Dive -> Vorpal Thrust -> Life Surge -> Full Thrust. Then go back to doing your Full Thrust combo, refreshing Heavy Thrust, Disembowel, and Chaos Thrust whenever Heavy Thrust is 5 seconds or less, and using your abilities between weaponskills, with a priority of Blood for Blood, Life Surge if before Full Thrust, Dragonfire Dive, then Jump and Spineshatter Dive (if usable).

Heavensward[edit]

Level 52: Battle Litany[edit]

This ability has a 3-minute cooldown, but boosts the critical hit rate of every party member within 15 yalms by 15% for 20 seconds. In party situations this leads to a ton of increased damage, especially in 8-man full parties (sadly it won't affect alliance members). The long cooldown keeps you from using it constantly however, so try to save it for wherever your party needs the most help, either boss fights or dangerous long pulls. Just pop it before beginning your opening.

Level 54: Blood of the Dragon[edit]

This ability increases the potency of Jump and Spineshatter Dive by 30% for 15 seconds. It has a short recast of 30 seconds, which is enough to use this before every single Jump and Spineshatter dive (assuming you use them close together.) This also unlocks your job gauge, which for now just shows the amount of time left for this one buff.

So, to refresh: Heavy Thrust ->Blood for Blood -> Impulse Drive -> Dragonfire Dive -> Disembowel -> Blood of the Dragon -> Chaos Thrust -> Jump -> True Thrust -> Spineshatter Dive -> Vorpal Thrust -> Life Surge -> Full Thrust. Then go back to doing your Full Thrust combo, refreshing Heavy Thrust, Disembowel, and Chaos Thrust whenever Heavy Thrust is 5 seconds or less, and using your abilities between weaponskills, with a priority of Blood for Blood, Life Surge if before Full Thrust, Dragonfire Dive, then Blood of the Dragon, Jump and Spineshatter Dive (if usable) which should be used in sequence.

Level 56: Fang and Claw[edit]

This weaponskill is 200 potency, 290 when executed from the flank, for 50 TP (5.8 per TP), and follows Full Thrust in a combo, leading to a total of 1120 potency over 4 GCDs and 210 TP, or 280 per GCD and 5.3 per TP. However, it can only be used following a Full Thrust combo while under Blood of the Dragon, and will extend your Blood of the Dragon gauge by 10 seconds. Unfortunately this is about as long as it takes to do the combo itself, so it won't turn Blood of the Dragon into a "use and forget" skill when you factor in upkeep of Heavy Thrust and Chaos Thrust, but you can easily keep the buff up until its skill is usable again.

So, to refresh: Heavy Thrust ->Blood for Blood -> Impulse Drive -> Dragonfire Dive -> Disembowel -> Blood of the Dragon -> Chaos Thrust -> Jump -> True Thrust -> Spineshatter Dive -> Vorpal Thrust -> Life Surge -> Full Thrust -> Fang and Claw. Then go back to doing your Fand and Claw combo, refreshing Heavy Thrust, Disembowel, and Chaos Thrust whenever Heavy Thrust is 8 seconds or less, and using your abilities between weaponskills, with a priority of Blood for Blood, Blood of the Dragon (If it's fallen off), Life Surge if before Full Thrust, Dragonfire Dive, then Jump and Spineshatter Dive (if usable) which should be used in sequence.

Level 58: Wheeling Thrust[edit]

This weaponskills is EXACTLY the same as Fang and Claw, except it comes after using a Chaos Thrust combo, and needs to be used from the REAR of the enemy for full damage. The extra potency is a little less kind to your Chaos thrust combo's average, taking it to 1330 potency over 4 GCDs and 210 TP, or 332.5 per GCD and 6.3 per TP, but DoTs tend to throw that off a little anyway. On the plus side, you can keep Blood of the Dragon up almost indefinitely at this point, only losing time on applying Heavy Thrust.

So, to refresh: Heavy Thrust ->Blood for Blood -> Impulse Drive -> Dragonfire Dive -> Disembowel -> Blood of the Dragon -> Chaos Thrust -> Wheeling Thrust -> Jump -> True Thrust -> Spineshatter Dive -> Vorpal Thrust -> Life Surge -> Full Thrust -> Fang and Claw. Then go back to doing your Fand and Claw combo, refreshing Heavy Thrust, Disembowel, and Chaos Thrust whenever Heavy Thrust is 8 seconds or less, and using your abilities between weaponskills, with a priority of Blood for Blood, Blood of the Dragon (If it's fallen off), Life Surge if before Full Thrust, Dragonfire Dive, then Jump and Spineshatter Dive (if usable) which should be used in sequence.

Level 60: Geirskogul[edit]

This is what most of your Heavensward progression has been leading to. This ability can be used every 35 seconds for a free 220 damage to all enemies in a 15 yalm line in front of you, so long as Blood of the Dragon is up. That said, the AoE portion of this attack may be difficult to use, as your tools to extend Blood of the Dragon are all single target. As the recast is slightly more than Blood of the Dragon however, you can simply pop Blood of the Dragon before using this, at least for a minute and a half before it gets out of sync.

So, for AoE, put up Heavy Thrust, pop Dragonfire Dive, then get into position and spam Doom Spike until it's time to refresh Heavy Thrust. Use your abilities as normal, except use Life Surge before Heavy Thrust (The effect will only trigger on the first enemy hit with Doom Spike, for a mere 130 potency compared to Heavy Thrust's 180). Keep this up until you're low on TP then swap to your single target combo, unless you're able to hit 6+ mobs, then simply run yourself dry.

Against single targets: Heavy Thrust ->Blood for Blood -> Impulse Drive -> Dragonfire Dive -> Disembowel -> Blood of the Dragon -> Chaos Thrust -> Geirskogul -> Wheeling Thrust -> Jump -> True Thrust -> Spineshatter Dive -> Vorpal Thrust -> Life Surge -> Full Thrust -> Fang and Claw. Then go back to doing your Fand and Claw combo, refreshing Heavy Thrust, Disembowel, and Chaos Thrust whenever Heavy Thrust is 8 seconds or less, and using your abilities between weaponskills, with a priority of Blood for Blood, Geirskogul, Blood of the Dragon (If it's fallen off), Life Surge if before Full Thrust, Dragonfire Dive, then Jump and Spineshatter Dive (if usable) which should be used in sequence.

Stormblood[edit]

Level 62: Sonic Thrust[edit]

An AoE combo, this follows Doom Spike and deals 170 potency in a straight line up to 10 yalms in front of you for 120 TP (1.4 per TP per mob). Your AoE combo now does 300 to each mob over 2 GCDs and 250 TP, or 150 per GCD and 1.2 per TP. This makes your AoE more damaging at a mere 2 monsters (albeit likely not enough to counter the extra TP drain), and more efficient at 5.

So, to refresh for AoE, put up Heavy Thrust, pop Dragonfire Dive, then get into position and alternate Doom Spike and Sonic Thrust until it's time to refresh Heavy Thrust. Use your abilities as normal, except use Life Surge before Heavy Thrust (The effect will only trigger on the first enemy hit with Doom Spike, for a mere 130 potency compared to Heavy Thrust's 180). Keep this up until you're low on TP then swap to your single target combo, unless you're able to hit 5+ mobs, then simply run yourself dry.

Level 64: Lance Mastery[edit]

This trait transforms your 4-move combos into 5-move ones. Immediately after Fang and Claw or Wheeling Thrust, you will be able to follow up with the other one at 30 bonus potency. So, your damaging Full Thrust combo now becomes 1440 damage for 5 GCDs and 260 TP (288 per GCD and 5.5 per GCD), and your buff upkeeping Chaos Thrust combo becomes 1650 for 5 GCDs and 260 TP (330 per GCD and 6.34 per TP). A slight upgrade in damage (Barring DoT silliness, the extra 320 attack is still worth more than swapping over to Full Thrust early), this also allows you to restore 20 seconds to your gauge every 12.5 seconds, with the only time you're not working on extending your gauge being when you apply Heavy Thrust. You can finally live the dream of infinite Blood of the Dragon gauge.

Level 66: Dragon Sight[edit]

This ability has a 2-minute recast, and for 15 seconds allows you to grant a fellow party member within 6 yalms the Left Eye buff, while granting you the Right Eye buff. The two of you will be tethered, and so long as you remain within 6 yalms of each other, you will receive an extra 10% damage and your partner will receive 5% damage. Use it on a fellow melee player for best results, though ranged can do in a pinch if they agree to help, or the tank if the monster is small.

Level 68: Mirage Dive[edit]

This augments your 4 Jump abilities (Jump, Elusive Jump, Spineshatter Dive, and Dragonfire Dive) to grant the Dive Ready status. This allows you to immediately use the ability Mirage Dive, dealing a free 200 potency to a target within 20 yalms. Yay free damage!

Level 70: Life of the Dragon[edit]

This trait adds an eye to the Dragon Gauge whenever you use Mirage Dive while under the effects of Blood of the Dragon (which should be "always.") Once you have 4, your next Geirskogul will change Blood of the Dragon to Life of the Dragon, which cannot be refreshed (but turns back into Blood of the Dragon when it wears off), and changes subsequent Geirskoguls into Nastrond.

Level 70: Nastrond[edit]

This upgraded Geirskogul now has a potency of 320 and can be used every 10 seconds. You'll have enough time to get 2-3 uses out of it before it expires.