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Magicka Sorcerer PvE DPS ESO build

Magicka Sorcerer PvE DPS ESO build

Magicka Sorcerer provides one of the highest sustained DPS in Elder Scrolls Online

Magicka Sorcerer
PvE DPS ESO build
[Wrathstone/Update 21]

You can find all our Pocket ESO Builds right here: Best ESO builds


Sorcerer Icon ESO

Sorcerer Class

Build Overview

Sorcerer is one of the best DPS classes in Elder Scrolls Online. It's ranked #4 on our PvE DPS Tier List for ESO, but offers much more build diversity, as Sorcerers can be played as Support, Healers, and Stamina-based DPS as well. This build revolves around high Magicka, maximizing Spell Damage, and the use of Destruction Staff. This build offers two very powerful skill sets, both for farming/AoE damage and single-target DPS, making it perfect for Trials, Dungeons, and Arenas. 

We have decided to include only one item set based on the best items for general usage. There are better setups for certain encounters and tweaks for either Boss fights or AoE clearing. If you would like alternative gear options included please us know in the comments below.

 Pros  Cons
 Very high single-target DPS  Gear-dependant because of high Magicka consumption
 Great AoE and clear speed when farming and leveling  Most of the skills are available in the late-game
 Self-sustain and self-healing  
 Solid defenses with Magicka shield  
 Viable for both ranged and melee playstyle  


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Attributes Priority

  1. Magicka - obviously the primary choice for this build. You should put at least 90% of your Points in Magicka, but 100% wouldn't hurt either (at least in the end-game)
  1. Health - while increasing your health doesn't seem like a bad idea, in the late-game your defenses will be primarily based on your Magicka shield rather than Health itself. You may put several points here during leveling, but when your build is complete, you should exchange Health for some additional Magicka
  1. Stamina - Stamina increases your mobility and avoidance in combat. Useless for this build unless you want to level up and PvP more smoothly


Primary Skillset
[Lightning Destruction Staff - for general usage, primary DPS]

Elemental Weapon Elemental Weapon (Guild: Psijic Order, morphed from Imbued Weapon) - cheap and instant spell cast which increases the damage of your next attack. It also makes it apply chill/burning or concussed effect, that can increase the damage of your next Force Pulse skill
Force Pulse Force Pulse (Weapon: Destruction Staff, morphed from Force Shock) - another decent spell which deals increased damage to burning/chilled or concussed enemies. It also has low Magicka cost making it efficient at triggering Crystal Fragments effect
Crystal Fragments Crystal Fragments (Sorcerer: Dark Magic, morphed from Crystal Shard) - high single-target damage spell which has a 35% chance to have greatly increased damage and reduces Magicka cost after casting another spell. Works great combined with low Magicka cost and instant cast spells to have the effect triggered
Channeled Acceleration Channeled Acceleration (Guild: Psijic Order, morphed from Accelerate) - solid, 36-second duration buff which increases your Movement Speed and Critical Damage
Inner Light Inner Light (Guild: Mages Guild, morphed from Magelight) - powerful buff which grants increased maximum Magicka and Spell Critical rating for 5 seconds
Shooting Star Ultimate: Shooting Star (Guild: Mages Guild, morphed from Meteor) - powerful AoE damage and AoE stun. Best used against groups of enemies as its cooldown gets reduced by each enemy hit by the initial blast


Secondary Skillset
[Inferno Destruction Staff - Damage over Time]

Elemental Blockade Elemental Blockade (Weapon: Destruction Staff, morphed from Wall of Elements) - provides terrific single-target and AoE DPS, as well as additional team utility by putting concussed enemies off-balance
Liquid Lightning Liquid Lightning (Sorcerer: Storm Calling, morphed from Lightning Splash) - decent area spell which deals moderate Damage over Time. It can be also activated by allies standing in its radius
Haunting Curse Haunting Curse (Sorcerer: Dark Magic, morphed from Daedric Curse) - powerful Curse which grants high sustained Damage over Time
Harness Magicka Harness Magicka (Armor: Light Armor, morphed from Annulment) - protects you with a magic shield that absorbs some of the incoming damage. Absorbing damage also causes you to restore Magicka
Power Surge Power Surge (Sorcerer: Storm Calling, morphed from Surge) - amazing buff which grants very good self-healing when you critically strike. It all increases your Weapon and Spell Damage for 33 seconds
Elemental Rage Ultimate: Elemental Rage (Weapon: Destruction Staff, morphed from Elemental Storm) - very powerful AoE Spell which deals elemental damage to enemies in a wide radius. Depending on the type of element, it can either have increased damage (Fire), increased duration (Lightning), or immobilize enemies (Ice).


Notable Passive Skills

Below you will find the notable Passive Skills for this build. There are a lot of more useful passives which can be chosen, and we have also included Racial Passives that may not be fit for your current character; this is merely a starting point for planning your character. 
Ancient Knowledge Ancient Knowledge (Weapon: Destruction Staff) - Passively adds a buff depending on the type of Staff that you are using. Inferno Staff increases the damage of your single-target abilities and Lightning Staff increases your AoE
Capacitor Capacitor (Sorcerer: Storm Calling) - increases your Magicka Regeneration rate
Concentration Concentration (Armor: Light Armor) - grants Spell Penetration if you have at least five parts of Light Armor equipped
Evocation Evocation (Armor: Light Armor) - increases your maximum Magicka and reduces Magicka cost of spells for each part of Light Armor equipped
Exploitation Exploitation (Sorcerer: Dark Magic) - your Spell Critical is increased by 6% after casting a Dark Magic spell
Gift of Magnus Gift of Magnus (Racial: High Elf, Breton) - increases your maximum Magicka
Mage Adept Mage Adept (Guild: Mages Guild) - Reduces Magicka and Health cost of your Mages' Guild abilities
Magicka Controller Magicka Controller (Guild: Mages Guild) - increases maximum Magicka and Magicka Regeneration rate for each Mages Guild ability socketed
Penetrating Magic Penetrating Magic (Weapon: Destruction Staff) - increases Spell Penetration
Unholy Knowledge Unholy Knowledge (Sorcerer: Dark Magic) - Stamina and Magicka cost of all abilities



Recommended Items and Sets:
Chest: Mother's Sorrow Set
Type: Light Trait: Divine Glyph: Health
Legs: Mother's Sorrow Set
Gloves: Light Trait: Divine Glyph: Magicka
Gloves: Mother's Sorrow Set
Type: Light Trait: Divine Glyph: Magicka
Boots: Mother's Sorrow Set
Type: Light Trait: Divine Glyph: Magicka
Belt: Mother's Sorrow Set
Type: Light Trait: Divine Glyph: Magicka
Head: Ilambris Monster Set
Type: Light Trait: Divine Glyph: Magicka
Shoulder: Ilambris Monster Set
Type: Light Trait: Divine Glyph: Magicka
Necklace: Willpower Set
Type: Light Trait: Arcane Glyph: Spell Damage
Ring 1: Willpower Set
Type: Light Trait: Arcane Glyph: Magicka Cost
Ring 2: Willpower Set
Type: Light Trait: Arcane Glyph: Magicka Cost
Weapon 1: Any Lightning Staff
Type: Lightning Trait: Sharpened Glyph: Shock
Weapon 2: The Maelstrom's Inferno Staff
Type: Fire Trait: Sharpened Glyph: Absorb Magic
Sets used in this build:

Mother's Sorrow: Light Armor set which is part of the base game. It can be found in Deshaan; Overland bosses have a chance to drop different parts for premade and public groups. All parts are "bound on equip" hence it's possible to acquire the set from other players.

This set grants the following bonuses:

  1. (2 items) Adds 1096 Max Magicka
  2. (3 items) Adds 833 Spell Critical
  3. (4 items) Adds 833 Spell Critical
  4. (5 items) Adds 1924 Spell Critical

Ilambris Set: a Monster Set introduced to the game in "One Tamriel" update. Consists of two parts which can be found in the veteran-mode Crypt of Hearts Dungeon. Ilambris Helmet and Shoulders both bind on pick-up. The set grants the following bonuses:

  1. (1 items) Adds 1096 Max Magicka
  2. (2 items) When you deal Flame or Shock Damage, you have a 10% chance to summon a meteor shower of the damage type that deals 1170 Damage to all enemies within 4 meters every 1 second for 5 seconds. Each effect can occur once every 8 seconds

Willpower Set: very solid set which is quite easy to obtain and perfectly fits this builds 3 "free" equipment slots. Willpower Set can be obtained as a reward for turning in 60 Key Fragments in Imperial City at Bone Shard Trophy Vault or Ethereal Trophy Vault or as a reward from Daily Dungeon Reward for using the "Group Finder" feature. Parts of this set "bind on equip" which makes it possible to buy them from other players as well. This set grants:

  1. (2 items) Adds 1451 Max Magicka
  2. (3 items) Adds 193 Spell Damage

Maelstrom Set - a single piece set which can be obtained from the veteran Maelstrom Arena. It's a single piece set which grants:

  1. (1 item) Your Light and Heavy Attacks deal an additional 1341 damage to enemies in your Wall of Elements


Champion Points

High priority
The Lover: Arcanist, Tenacity
The Ritual: Thaumaturge
The Steed: Ironclad
Medium priority
The Attronarch: Master at Arms
The Apprentice: Elemental Expert
The Lady: Hardy, Elemental Defender, Thick Skinned
Low priority
The Apprentice: Spell Erosion
The Tower: Warlord

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This is the premiere version of our Magicka Sorcerer Pocket Build for Elder Scrolls Online. If you would like to see more detailed information added let us know in the comments below. We may try to add customization options for certain encounters and alternative gear options. 

Pictures used in this article are the intellectual property of Bethesda Softworks