Having played more than a 200 hours in over 700 games, most of which as a Bladedancer, split evenly across PvE and PvP, I found a layout that I tend to fall back on for each type.
Besides just listing what I chose, I’ll also describe the reasons behind them, so if you find that you’re a similar type of player, but have not yet spent a lot of time with one or more of the Bladedancer’s abilities, maybe it’s time to give it a whirl!
|Grenade||PvE||Arcbolt Grenade||A grenade that chains bolts of lightning to nearby enemies.|
|PvP||Flux Grenade||An explosive grenade which deals additional damage when attached to enemies.|
|Movement||PvE||Blink||A short distance teleport that replaces Double Jump.|
|Super||PvE||Razor’s Edge||Unleash a destructive wave of energy that travels along the ground.|
|Melee||PvE||Fast Twitch||Reduces the cooldown of Blink Strike.|
|Path||PvE||Unknown||Training focused on battle recovery and toughness.|
|Ability||PvE||Shadowjack||Increases the duration of invisibility effects.|
|PvP||Quick Draw||Weapons ready immediately.|
|Way of the||PvE||Fearless||Training focused on toughness at all costs.|
|Ability||PvE||Stalker||Gain invisibility after crouching in place for a short time.|
|PvP||Hungering Blade||Kills with Arc Blade and Blink Strike immediately regenerate health.|
- Arcbolt Grenade (PvE)— This grenade can damage (or take out) up to three enemies that are semi-close together. It’s really useful in PvE, considering enemies operate in groups most of the time. It’s also possible to stick this grenade on an enemy, causing more damage to just that one. I prefer this grenade over the Flux grenade, because I’d rather weaken three enemies then kill one, and I prefer it over the Skip grenade, because often a couple of the Skip’s projectiles get wasted, and if they don’t, they don’t appear as powerful overall.
- Flux Grenade (PvP)— If you can stick this grenade on a player, it’s a guaranteed kill. Great for situations when you know you’re going to die or when you don’t want to engage in an open firefight. I can’t tell you how often someone was shooting at me, I peeked around the corner, stuck the grenade, and continued on my path. It sucks when you miss, though, because it’s pretty much worthless in that case.
- Blink— Teleporting is great for getting away or approaching an opponent safely. It takes a little while to get used to it, but once you do, you have an edge. I do find myself using it more often for attacks rather than defense. If I see that someone is close by, I’ll teleport in their direction, and before they even know what’s going on, I’m already shooting at them. It’s especially useful when you have Arc Blade and you’re approaching a control zone, because you can spawn in the middle of the action, taking everyone out (as apposed to being taken out while you’re jumping toward them). I should note that when absolute control over where you land is required, I do opt for the Higher Jump (in Nightfalls or chest runs, for example).
- Razor’s Edge— This allows you to cause Super damage from a distance (it travels along the ground). It’s really useful in PvE, especially when you’re fighting enemies that can kill you with one hit, because you can cause damage without being that close. I forget about it in PvP, but every time someone else kills me with it, I think ‘wow, that’s clever’, so the potential is there. I prefer it over Showstopper, because that keeps you in place for a bit, making it easy for enemies to gang up, and I prefer it over Vanish, because you have a limited time to use your Super, so you don’t want to spend that on vanishing.
- Fast Twitch— When you’re fighting with someone in a close combat situation and are slowly approaching each other during battle, the kill often comes down to the melee. Having the Blink Strike available, where you can essentially melee the opponent from a distance, gives you a huge advantage. With Fast Twitch, this feature cools down very quickly. As a side note, this also allows you to invest in armor that has intellect (super) and discipline (grenade), because strength (melee) essentially gives you what Fast Twitch does.
- Path Unknown— I used to allocate as much as I could into agility, but I’ve started placing more emphasis on toughness, followed by recovery, and then agility. The reason being that, more often than not, when I’m in a firefight, I don’t want to run, but I want to prevail, and having just a little bit of extra toughness helps out. Recovery is important, because when your shield is low, the faster it comes back, the faster you can get back into action.
- Shadowjack (PvE)— When you go invisible (Stalker), it really doesn’t last very long, but with Shadowjack, you get a few extra seconds to approach, get away or revive a teammate.
- Quick Draw (PvP)— Inevitably another player is going to surprise you. The faster you can draw your weapon, the faster you can get the kill before you are killed. It’s actually amazing how much faster it is. You also don’t have to walk around with your weapon aimed, because you can draw it so quickly.
Way of the
- Way of the Fearless— Like I mentioned earlier, toughness above all, and that’s exactly what this does.
- Stalker (PvE)— Having the ability to go invisible is really useful. You can run past enemies you don’t want to battle, you can revive a teammate who’s surrounded by enemies, you can sneak up and prepare unleashing your Super, you can scope out an area without getting killed, and you can temporarily disappear to regain health.
- Hungering Blade (PvP)— This ability was an easy decision for PvP, because when you’re engaged in battle, your shields are almost always low, but if you can get the kill with either your Super or the Blink Strike, you immediately get your health back. This comes in really handy when another opponent lurks around the corner, as you’ll be ready to take them on. I like this over Encore (which extends Arc Blade after a kill), because most of the time people are shooting at you and you won’t last that long.
All that said, choose the abilities that cater to your playing style, but hopefully you’ve read something that will tempt you to give a previously discarded ability another look. If you’re just starting out, this is a good base to start with.