Lost Ark features a wide range of classes that range from bulky warriors to agile assassins. The Deathblade, a prestige Assassin class, remains one of the game's most popular classes for its ease of use and flashy skills. It's also one of the best PvP classes in the game, making this an excellent class for newcomers and veterans alike.
While it might be easy to use, there are quite a few mechanics you'll need to juggle as a Deathblade. This guide will give an overview of the Deathblade, how the Death Orb mechanic functions, the class' unique Engravings, some of the best skills and Tripods available, and a brief glimpse at the Deathblade's most popular endgame builds.
Updated February 5th, 2022, by Charles Burgar: Lost Ark is just around the corner. After years of waiting, players can finally dive into the rich progression and endgame systems that Lost Ark has to offer. To help you start your journey on the right foot, we've updated this guide with better formatting, up-to-date information about the Deathblade's best skills and Engravings, and we've interlinked this guide with our Deathblade builds guide.
This guide serves as an overview of the Deathblade's skills and Engravings for the NA and EU version of Lost Ark. For details surrounding Deathblade builds, consult our Deathblade builds guide.
Deathblade is an advanced Assassin class that plays closer to an agile martial class than a proper rogue. Utilizing three different blades, the Deathblade carves through the battlefield with skill and grace. This class features excellent mobility, high damage output, excellent buffs to support your team in endgame activities, and arguably the flashiest set of skills out of all the Lost Ark classes.
As a Deathblade, you'll be using a wide range of rapid-hitting attacks to build up the Deathblade Arts, your class identity skill. When activated, you become a supercharged version of yourself that's faster, hits harder, and can unleash a devastating final blow. Those that love dexterity-focused melee classes in MMOs and ARPGs will feel right at home with the Deathblade. Oh, and this class is a blast to play in PvP, making this an excellent main class for newcomers and veterans alike.
Death Orb Mechanic
Death Orb: Damage targets to build up energy for one of three Death Orbs. When one or more Orbs are charged, you can enter Deathblade Arts mode to gain increased move speed, attack speed, attack power, MP recovery, all while reducing your skill cooldowns. Activate Deathblade Arts once more to unleash a devastating final blow, consuming all remaining Death Orb energy.
Death Orb is the Deathblade's class identity, acting as a gauge you can activate to enter an ultimate form called Deathblade Arts. There's quite a bit going on with this mechanic, so let's break it down.
All damage you deal will build up energy in a Death Orb. Your class identity has three Death Orbs in total, each hit filling up one at a time. When at least one orb is filled, you can activate the Deathblade Arts, granting a wide range of buffs. While in Deathblade Arts, your Death Orb energy will begin to decay. Deathblade Arts will end when your energy reaches zero, which can occur naturally or by activating Deathblade Arts a second time.
Prematurely ending this effect will unleash a powerful overhead slam attack that deals an immense amount of damage. The more Death Orbs you have charged before deactivating Deathblade Arts, the more damage this attack will deal. Ideally, you'll want to maintain Deathblade Arts until a Death Orb is about to expire, at which point you prematurely end the effect to release a powerful attack. Rinse and repeat as needed.
Deathblade Arts grants the following buffs while active:
- Move Speed: +10%
- Atk. Speed: +10% / 15% / 20%
- Atk. Power: +10% / 20% / 30%
- MP Recovery: +15% / 25% / 45%
- Skill Cooldowns: -10% / 30% / 50%
- Does not affect Awakening Skills, Movement Skills, and Stand Up Actions.
Best Deathblade Engravings
Like most classes in Lost Ark, the Engravings you spec for are vital for getting the most out of your build. Let's dive into the Deathblade's class-exclusive Engravings, then we'll give some recommendations for some class-agnostic Engravings that pair well with this class.
Like other classes in New World, the Deathblade features two unique Engravings that revolve around the Deathblade Arts mechanic.
|Deathblade Arts does not consume Art meter for 2 seconds when activated. For 30 seconds after bursting, gain increased Atk./Move Speed and Attack Power.
|Deathblade Surge is cast in the max level of Surge Zero form, regardless of the number of Death Orbs you have. When Arts is activated and skills other than Basic and Awakening attacks hit, the Surge Enhancement effect is stacked every 0.4 seconds (max 20 stacks). When Death Trance ends, gain Death Orb Meter for each Surge Enhancement effect you have (5% each).
|+6% Atk./Move Speed; +8/16/25% Atk. Power depending on your burst level.
|Each stack of Surge Enhancement increases Deathblade Surge damage by +7.5% damage.
|+9% Atk./Move Speed; +10/20/30% Atk. Power depending on your burst level.
|Each stack of Surge Enhancement increases Deathblade Surge damage by +7.5% damage and grants +0.5% Atk. Power.
|+12% Atk./Move Speed; +12/24/36% Atk. Power depending on your burst level.
|Each stack of Surge Enhancement increases Deathblade Surge damage by +7.5% damage and grants +1% Atk. Power.
Remaining Energy is a fantastic Engraving that most Deathblade PvE builds use. It provides a buff that's similar to Deathblade Arts that persists even after your class identity expires. Activate Deathblade Arts, enjoy an immense boost to your damage and mobility, then unleash your Deathblade Surge just before your first orb expires. You get an extra two seconds to work with before the orb begins to decay, giving you an even longer burst damage window.
Surge sounds much more complicated on paper than it is in-game. In essence, every skill you use (excluding default attacks and Awakening skills) will give you a stack of Surge Enhancement on hit. Each stack of this buff increases the damage that Deathblade Surge will deal once activated. The T2 and T3 variants of Surge also enhance your Deathblade's overall Atk. Power with each stack. Activate Deathblade Arts, use your skills to reach x20 Enhancement stack before your first Orb decays, then activate Deathblade Surge to deal millions of damage in a single hit.
Suggested Engravings For The Deathblade
|+20% damage to bosses, but you take +20% damage. This is a staple of just about every DPS class in Lost Ark.
|Atk. Power +16%. Healing 25%, natural recovery excluded. Yet another great pick for DPS classes.
|Charge skills' charging speed +40%. Damage +20%. Most Deathblade skills are charge skills, benefiting this class greatly.
|Master of Ambush
|Back attacks deal 25% increased damage. Deathblades want do damage enemies from the back when possible, so this further enhances that playstyle.
Best Skills And Tripods
Unlike the Shadowhunter, Deathblades only have two types of skills: Normal Skills and Awakening Skills. The latter are ultimate abilities that aren't part of a typical ability rotation, so we'll only be focusing on the Deathblade's Normal Skills. Even with their wide range of available skills, most Deathblade endgame builds use the same handful of abilities. You can run whichever skills and Tripods you desire for solo content, but if you're looking for the absolute best skills and Tripods for this class, here's what everyone runs:
|Description: Spin towards the target location and move 5 meters, inflicting up to 295 damage. This skill can be used up to 2 times in a row.
|Description: Jump 6 meters forward, pushing foes back for 456 damage. Deliver a powerful slash with your longsword upon landing to inflict 305 damage and knock the foes away. Pushed foes are launched back in the air.
|Description: Charge to deliver a powerful thrust to inflict 368 damage before being fully charged, and 1,471 damage when overcharged.
|Description: Perform a sweeping slash in front of you to inflict up to 1,688 damage, pulling foes close.
|Description: Create a tornado that protects you and inflicts 107 damage. The tornado lasts 6 seconds, inflicting 72 damage to nearby foes.
|Description: Charge to move 5 meters forward before attacking foes. Use the skill uncharged to attack with your dual blades and inflict 587 damage. Charge to stage 1 to inflict 1,172 damage, and overcharge to inflict 1,172 damage, followed by a longsword slash that causes 783 damage and knocks foes back.
|Fist of Darkness
|Fist of Darkness
|Vital Point Strike
Most of these skills deal a high amount of damage or grant a solid chunk of mobility. Take note that nearly every ability is a Back Attack type, meaning it can deal backstab damage. This makes positioning one of the most important aspects of playing a Deathblade well. You'll want to reposition to an enemy's back whenever possible to output as much damage as possible. For raids and other endgame content, this is a must to play this class effectively. On the upside, most abilities also come with Super Armor, making this class a nightmare to fight against in PvP.
For the western version of Lost Ark, you've got quite a few options for builds. Each Class Engraving is worth building around, and the Deathblade is so powerful in PvP that it warrants its own build. We'll give an overview of two common endgame builds for the Deathblade below, but feel free to read our Deathblade builds guide for an in-depth look at how to bring the Deathblade into Lost Ark's endgame.
Remaining Energy PvE Build
Arguably the most popular PvE build for Deathblades, Remaining Energy builds focus on utilizing the Remaining Energy Engraving for the Deathblade, granting a plethora of bonuses that make your character better at hacking and slashing apart foes. It strikes a great balance between high-damage burst attacks and enough mobility to keep you out of harm's way during intense combat encounters. You'll build up your Death Orb energy quickly, take advantage of a myriad of buffs, then unleash a devastating attack to reset the process. Repeat the loop as needed to kill whatever enemies stand in your what.
This style of build utilizes Spincutter, Soul Absorber, Moonlight Sonic, and Blitz Rush to dish out some serious damage. Some of these abilities are charged, so be sure you're behind the enemy before you begin to rotate through your abilities. With enough Specialization and Crit, you should be able to carve through opponents and maintain Remaining Energy's various buffs with little issue.
Deathblade Endgame PvP Build
A good Deathblade player can easily win 1v1 duels in PvP and even turn uneven fights in their favor. This is due to the copious amounts of CC and Super Armor the Deathblade's abilities have, making it fairly easy to play for newcomers and veteran Lost Ark players alike.
You'll want to use Upper Slash, Head Hunt, Blitz Rush, and Moonlight Sonic to create some powerhouse combos against anyone that gets hit by you. Your other abilities should provide mobility or additional damage to help you set up combos against your opponents. The idea is to juggle your opponents in the air and damage them with Moonlight Sonic for serious damage. More specifics can be found in our Deathblade best builds guide.