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New World Rapier/Musket DPS Build

New World Rapier/Musket DPS Build

Build Guide on one of the most deadly single-target DPS setups in the game

New World Rapier/Musket DPS Build


Build notes:
August 29, 2021
-Build created


Build Overview

Rapier is one of the best Weapons in New World and its bleed effects are among the strongest DoTs in the game. However, there's (and there has always been) a problem with DoT effects. Mainly, the fact that some of their damage is often wasted, as targets tend to die before DotS have the time to deliver all their damage ticks. Luckily, Rapier offers a very simple and extremely deadly solution - an ability to turn bleeds' damage over time into burst damage. 

Our "Highwayman" Rapier/Musket Build focuses on maximizing single target DPS. It does that in three ways. Firstly, it relies on Musket to open fights with a deadly burst damage sequence of Power Shot, followed by Powder Burn. Secondly, it transitions to the melee stage by Trapping the target and using the 20% Trapped Damage bonus to maximize the damage of Rapier's Tondo and Flurry. And thirdly, it tries to finish the fight off by applying the 2nd and 3rd stacks of Tondo to consume them with Flourish and Finish for a massive burst of damage at the end. 

You can also check our other  New World Builds 


 Pros  Cons
 Very Good Single Target DPS   Lacks AoE 
 High Burst Damage and Deadly DoT Effects   Hard to Master 
 Great for Solo Play   


Attribute Allocation

STRENGTH 5 (+0) No points added here 
DEXTERITY 150 (+0) This is the primary stat for both of your weapons - you should invest most of your points into it. Doing so will maximize your damage output and have a side-effect of making you better at skinning. You should aim to get 5 Dexterity bonuses, which means 250 points in total. 
INTELLIGENCE 5 (+0) No points added here 
FOCUS 5 (+0) No points added here 
CONSTITUTION 50 (+0) This build is mainly intended for solo play, thus some Constitution goes a long way for it. Investing some points here will increase your overall health and make you much more resistant to incoming damage. If you feel like you don't need extra resilience, you can invest these points into Dexterity and get some Constitution from Gear later. 




In real life, Rapier is a gentleman's weapon. In New World... it's a vicious death tool that can wound and maim like no other.  It has a very high crit chance and offers a range of very powerful bleed effects that will drain your enemy's health surprisingly quickly. In this build, we hyperfocus on Rapier's Blood Skill Tree. Doing so lets us maximize bleed effects and eventually consume them to deal coup de grâce (or a final blow, if you will). If the phrase "death by a thousand cuts" sounds like fun to you, you'll definitely like the proposed Rapier setup. 

Active Skills:

  1. Tondo (Blood): This Skill lets you perform a slash so quickly that it extends the reach of your blade. Tondo deals direct damage and applies a bleed that deals 100% weapon damage over 12 seconds and stacks up to three times (each subsequent application also refreshes the duration). You should take all three of the corresponding passives; Thirst for Blood - 10% Tondo CD reduction when applying the first stack of bleed, And Again - 25% Tondo CD reduction if you hit only one target (this works even if you get blocked), and proper Spacing - If you're 4 or more meters away from the target, Topndo's direct damage is improved by 100%. You should use Tondo as your opening Rapier Skill, when your target is trapped (so, after finishing your Musket combo). 
  2. Flurry (Blood): A Skill that makes you unleash a series of five quick thrusts, each subsequent thrust dealing more damage. You can cancel Flurry early by using a dodge. You should upgrade Flurry with all four of its passives, as doing so will make it do increased block damage, reduce its Cooldown by 7% per hit, extend the duration of Rapier's bleeds by 1s per hit, and stagger the target at the end of its attack sequence. Flurry should be used after your first Tondo, to keep the bleed duration up. Then, use a Heavy Attack to exploit the Stagger effect applied by Flurry. 
  3. Flourish and Finish (Blood): A two-stage ability - Flourish makes you perform an attack that knocks back enemies. Following up with a light Attack will trigger Finish, which is a forward lunge that consumes all Rapier Bleeds on any target hit, dealing 110% of their Damage immediately. You should improve Flourish and Finish with all four of its corresponding passives to build a truly deadly finisher (extra Grit, extra stamina gain, cooldown reduction, and 150% instant bleed damage instead of the standard 110%). This is your finishing skill - use it when your target has 3 stacks of Tondo bleeds to obliterate it. 

Core Passives:

  1. Refreshing Strikes (Blood): With this passive, all your cooldowns will be reduced by 1% each time you make a hit. This works with all types of Rapier attacks, so light, heavy, and skills (also, it works with each Flurry attack, so you get 5 in 1 there). 
  2. Unerring (Blood): You deal 5% more damage to targets affected by a Rapier Bleed. In a build such as this one, this is just a free 5% damage increase as you'll almost always have a bleed active.
  3. Light Edge (Blood): Damage of both middle swipe attacks in the light attack chain is increased by 8%. This is great, as you should weave Light Attacks between your 2nd and 3rd Tondo to maximize DPS and get some extra Cooldown reduction. 
  4. Heavy Puncture (Blood): From now on, performing a Heavy Attack on a bleeding enemy will extend their Rapier Bleeds by 2 seconds. This effect also applies to future stacked applications of the same bleed, thus extending the entire stack. With this passive, you'll want to perform a single Heavy Attack during your combo (preferably after you use Flurry). 

Musket is a great secondary weapon choice for Dexterity-based builds due to its high burst damage and amazing crowd control. It can be described as the polar opposite of Bow. It is slow-to-reload, but heavy-hitting - Bow fires much faster, but deals less damage per hit. The Bow is about mobility - Musket encourages you to stay still. With a Musket, you'll be able to deal substantial damage to monsters before they can strike back. 

Active Skills: 

  1. Power Shot (Sharpshooter): An Overload Skill that deals 150% Weapon Damage. It does not stack nor combine with other "Overload" shots. We recommend you take all three Power Shot's passives; Initial Engagement that will make you gain Empower for 5 seconds after landing a hit with the Power Shot, First Blood that gives +10% extra Damage against full health targets, and Bullseye that makes Power Shot Headshots reduce its cooldown by 15%. This is your ranged opener - take your aim carefully. 
  2. Powder Burn (Sharpshooter): A Skill that makes you Overload your Musket, causing the next shot to deal 110% Weapon Damage and apply a burn status effect to the Target. Burn deals 20% Weapon Damage per second for 9 seconds. Effects of Powder Burn do not stack with other overload shots' effects. This is a very solid opening skill - it deals good damage and applies a nasty DoT effect. You should also take both of the corresponding passives for extra DoT duration and damage buff. Use Powder Burn after the Power Shot, aim foe the head. 
  3. Traps (Trapper): This Skill allows you to throw a Trap that lasts for 20 seconds. When the trap is triggered, it causes its target to be Rooted in place for 3 seconds. You should boost this skill with two of its corresponding passives - Trapped Damage - Trap also applies 20% (!) Rend, and Scent of Blood - You Regen 100% Weapon Damage as Health when you deal damage to Trapped Targets. The Trap should be used after Powder Burn: To maximize the effectiveness of it, you should engage the target with your Rapier as soon as it becomes trapped (if you do so, your Rapier Skills will benefit from the 20% Rend applied by the Trap, maximizing your damage output). 

Core Passives: 

  1. Empowering Weakness (Trapper): With this passive, you'll get an Empower (5% extra Damage for 5 seconds) buff each time you hit a target that has an active debuff on them. This passive is just 5% extra damage at all times, as this build has multiple ways of applying debuffs. 
  2. Empowering Headshot (Sharpshooter): Successful Headshots now grant you Empower, increasing all Musket shot's damage by 10% for 5 seconds. This stacks very well with Initial Engagement. 
  3. Hit Your Mark (Sharpshooter): With this passive, you'll deal more damage the further away you are from your target. This can grant a maximum of 15% Increased Headshot and Critical Hit Damage at 100 meters away. 
  4. Sniper (Sharpshooter): A very cool passive that adds an optional 3x zoom view for all musket aim shots. To use the zoom, scroll your mouse wheel up (zoom in) and down (zoom out). This also has a secondary effect of increasing all Headshot damage by 15%. 


Items/Stat Priority

First and foremost, you should try to get 250 total Dexterity points. Boosting Constitution by a bit is not a bad idea either - remember that this is a solo build that spends a lot of time in melee. In other words - you can get as few Constitution points from items as you're comfortable with, but the more you take, the safer you'll feel in combat. As for Armor Weight, you should use Light/Medium Armor to benefit from the increased damage they provide. 

We are obviously going to update this section when the full game is released, and we have more time to get familiar with all the Perks, Gems, and specific attributes of higher rarity equipment. Any changes to this guide will be described on top of the page in Build notes. 



This is the initial version of our New World Rapier/Musket DPS build. We tried to include all the important information on how to set up a character to run it, while also trying to keep the guide as compact as possible. If we've missed something of importance, please let us know! 

If you have any Build requests, please post them in the Comments section below. We will be happy to cover your most requested builds in the future! Also, we hope that you have found this guide useful and informative. Also, we will be happy to receive constructive criticism that will help us improve our future work, so don't hesitate to give us your feedback.