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Nightblade Class in ESO - Everything you need to know! header

Nightblade Class in ESO - Everything you need to know!

Nightblade Class in ESO - Everything you need to know!

Nightblades in ESO are one of the most powerful classes in both PvE and PvP. They are excellent damage dealers (DPS) and can also be great tanks and decent healers.Nightblade class in ESO Argonian

Relying variously on stealth, blades, and speed, ESO Nightblades thrive on conflict and misfortune, trusting in their luck and cunning to survive. Attack from the shadows, drain your foes' health, and vanish into the void with the Nightblade Class. The shadows truly are your greatest weapon as you wield abilities that deal devastating damage at any range and siphon your victim's lifeforce to your allies.

Since the Nightblade class is available with the ESO (Elder Scrolls Online] base game, you can play the class from the get-go if you want. If you want to learn more about all classes that you can play in ESO please visit the Classes Overview Page.

Nightblade Class Introduction

Nightblades are a very popular class in-game, but also pretty hard to master. They are very dynamic and strong, but also very fragile when it comes to survival. You can play them very offensively, or stealth based dealing deadly damage from the shadows. Nightblades are also good tanks and decent healers, below you can find a list of the pros and cons of the Nightblade class in ESO.

  • deals a ton of damage
  • great for group play
  • insane mobility
  • superb stealth
  • can vanish from a fight
  • great healing

  • not very beginner friendly
  • hard to play/master in endgame
  • tanking and healing specs aren't very common

DPS Nightblade Pros and Cons

The Nightblade class is most commonly played as a Magicka Nightblade damage dealer (DPS), but you can also find Stamina Nightblade damage dealers (DPS) in the game. They are harder to master but also very fun to play and can deal a ton of damage.

  • amazing damage
  • stealth
  • fast playstyle
  • high mobility
  • one of the best solo specs

  • difficult to master in endgame

Healer Nightblade Pros and Cons

Nightblades are decent healers, but they aren't very common. The main reason being that there are better options available as class healers.

  • great healing output
  • good support abilities

  • no burst heal
  • no synergy to support the group

Tank Nightblade Pros and Cons

Nightblades are decent tanks, but they aren’t very common as they are hard to master and less rewarding to play compared to other tanking classes.

  • good resource management
  • easy survivability
  • high damage mitigation
  • great defensive capabilities
  • great self heal

  • not many class based tanking abilities

Nightblade Class Skill Lines explained

Next we are going to take a look at the three class skill lines that the Nightblade has. Of course you can use any skill line available in the game to create your own playstyle. Most, if not all builds do use a mix between class and non class skill lines.

You can find a full list of all the Nightblade class skill lines on the Nightblade Skills Overview Page.

Assassination Skill Line

Assassination skill line for Nightblade in ESO

The Assassination skill line is part of the Nightblade toolkit and has a focus on offensive abilities. You can strike with terrible lethality and leave your foes debilitated or worse with abilities that deal massive damage and weaken them for the final blow.

Its Ultimate ability is Death Stroke. It costs only a fraction of Ultimate and deals a lot of damage, causing an enemy to take 20% more damage from your attacks for 6 seconds. Incapacitating Strike is one of its morphs and deals additional disease damage and if cast with higher Ultimate, stuns the target. It also helps you restore resources with Light and Heavy Attacks, if a negative effect is active thanks to the Reave debuff. Soul Harvest afflicts the enemy with Major Defile, reducing their Healing Received. If you have it slotted, you will also gain Ultimate every time an enemy is killed by you.

Impale is a Nightblade’s strongest skill, it deals insane damage in execute. Watch this video to see how it’s used.

Shadow Skill Line

Shadow skill line for Nightblade in ESO

The Shadow skill line is focused on offensive abilities and stealth gameplay. It is the second out of three Nightblade-focused skill lines. Embrace the shadows to find the perfect moment to strike or slip away without notice. Terrify your enemies with fearsome spirits and relentless shades.

Its Ultimate ability is Consuming Darkness. It conjures an AoE ring that reduces the Movement Speed of enemies by 70% and grants you and your allies Major Protection. There’s also a Hidden Refresh synergy, granting your allies invisibility, increasing their Movement Speed by 70% and healing them for a lot of health. Bolstering Darkness is one of its morphs and adds Major Protection to anyone who passes through it for as long as the ability lasts. Veil of Blades adds an additional, negative AoE effect on all enemies, dealing damage over time.
Shadow Cloak is the ability which defines Nightblades as shadowy thieves. Watch this video to see how it’s used.

Siphoning Skill Line

Siphoning skill line for Nightblade in ESO

The third and last skill line of the Nightblade-focused skill lines is focused on offensive drain abilities, healing and sustain. Weaken your foes and grant them a slow death with lethal abilities that drain the enemy of their life while also healing you and your allies.

Its Ultimate ability is Soul Shred. It deals a lot of damage and stuns all enemies affected. An ally can target a ravaged enemy and activate the Soul Leech synergy, dealing additional damage and healing for the damage caused. Soul Siphon is one of its morphs and heals you and your allies instead of damaging and stunning enemies. Soul Tether is the other morph and heals for half the initial damage caused, and enemies hit are tethered to you. You deal constant damage and heal while tethered.

Sap Essence is a very powerful self and group heal. Watch this video to see how it’s used.

Nightblade Class Builds for ESO

Below you can find a full list of common Nightblade builds. If you are a new player we do recommend starting with the beginner guides. However, you can also go take a look at the endgame builds to see what the class can look like when you reach the endgame.

Beginner Nightblade Class Guides & Builds

The Beginner Nightblade guides and builds are meant for new players. They introduce you to the Nightblade class and give you a good starting point for your adventure in ESO.

PvE Solo Nightblade Class Builds

The PvE Solo Nightblade builds are optimized for solo gameplay. The builds below have a good balance between damage, survivability, healing and movement. Everything you need to get through ESO alone. Of course, you can also use these solo builds in a group, especially useful in random groups.

PvE Dungeon & Trial META Nightblade Class Builds

The Meta Nightblade builds listed below are meant to be played in a group. The Meta Nightblade builds have a very cookie cutter approach and rely heavily on other group members.

If you are interested in PvP, you can take a closer look at this page, as it lists a variety of PvP builds and explains them in detail.

Is the Nightblade Class Beginner Friendly?

The Nightblade class is one of the most beginner friendly classes in ESO, but one of the most difficult to master when you reach endgame. Nightblades are often recommended to players that need help picking a start class in ESO. Let us explore below what makes them so beginner friendly.

Nightblades get a very powerful skill early on, the skill is called Strife. The skill is in the first slot in the Siphoning class skill line. The skill deals damage and provides you with healing at the same time, that is what makes this so powerful. The skill is usually morphed into Swallow Soul to further increase the damage. In the Shadow class skill line you get access to Shadow Cloak pretty early in the game. This skill allows you to go invisible, allowing you to skip monsters or escape a fight.

A bit later you also gain access to Siphoning Strikes which can be morphed into Siphoning Attacks or Leeching Strikes to increase your sustain with either magicka or stamina resources. On top of that you will also get access to Drain Power which can be morphed into Sap Essence, this ability deals AoE (area of effect) damage and also heals you and your group members at the same time.

Magicka Nightblade Damage Dealer Showcase

Magicka Nightblaes are very powerful magicka users which benefit a lot from class abilities and passives. Powerful passives such as Master Assassin, Executioner, Pressure Points, Hemorrhage, Refreshing Shadows, Catalyst, Magicka Flood and Transfer all boost the power of your spec. Magicka Nightblades also have a great ability line up. The Death Stroke ultimate hits hard and boost your damage by a lot for a short duration, Impale deals incredible damage in exectute, Merciless Resolve increases damage and has a powerful bow proc that deals insane damage, Twisting Path is great for AoE (area of effect) damage, the Dark Shade applies Minor Maim and deals good AoE damage, Swallow Soul is one of your spammables and deals great single target damage and also provides healing, Siphoning Attacks increases your sustain and Sap Essence is one of the most powerful AoE attacks which also heals at the same time. You can see, there are plenty of class abilities to chose from on the Nightblade.

The video below shows the Solo Magicka Nightblade Build in action, clearing the veteran mode Vateshran Hollows Arena.

Stamina Nightblade Damage Dealer Showcase

Stamina Nightblades in ESO are very popular and can push insane burst damage. Incapacitating Strike provides you with a huge damage boost for a short duration, which you can follow up with the bow proc of Relentless Focus and your spammable Surprise Attack. In execute Stamina Nightblades have access to the Killer's Blade execute ability which deals amazing damage. Power Extraction and Dark Shade also boost their AoE (area of effect) damage by a lot. In addition to all that, sustain is also fairly easy thanks to Leeching Strikes and the Reave debuff that is always active as long as you have Incapacitating Strike slotted.

Passives such as Master Assassin, Executioner, Pressure Points, Hemorrhage, Refreshing Shadows, Catalyst and Transfer all boost the power of stamina Nightblades.

The video below shows the Solo Stamina Nightblade Build in action, clearing the veteran mode Vateshran Hollows Arena.

Healer Nightblade Showcase

Nightblade healers aren't very common, the main reason being that there are simly better classes like the Templar, Warden or Necromancer that can fill that role. However, despite all that you can still create a good healing build with the Nightblade.

Funnel Health deals a bit of damage and heals up to two other players, Refreshing Path is a great AoE (area of effect) heal and Healthy Offering gives access to a strong burst heal. And the ultimate Bolstering Darkness can also be used to increase damage mitigation for a short duration.

For more information on the Nightblade Healer I do recommend checking out the Nightblade Healer Build.

Tank Nightblade Showcase

Nightblade Tanks are good tanks but aren't that common because classes like Dragonknight, Warden or Necromancer are usually preferred. However, you can still create a good Nightblade Tank build. There are a few abilities that really stand out and make Nightblade Tanks unique. Dark Cloak is a very powerful heal that you can use yourself and it also provides you with the Minor Protection buff. Mirage grants you Major Evasion and Minor Resolve, increasing your AoE (area of effect) damage mitigation and resistances and Leeching Strikes makes sustain a lot easier.

For more information on the Nightblade Tank I do recommend checking out the Nightblade Tank Build.

Related pages

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ESO Skills Library - All ESO Skills
All ESO Skills, full library of all the available Elder Scrolls Online skills. Learn more about Dragonknight, Nightblade, Sorcerer and many more ...
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All races and classes in ESO!
This is an extensive guide to all races and classes in ESO! Whatever you want to know, you can find it here!
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ESO Classes - All Elder Scrolls Online Classes
ESO Classes - Everything you need to know about classes in ESO (Elder Scrolls Online). A complete overview page about all the classes: Dragonknight, Sorcerer, Nightblade, Templar, Warden and Necromancer.

Frequently asked questions

What race is best for Nightblade in ESO?

It all depends on how you want to play your character. For tanking, Nords, Argonians and Imperials are great. For healing, Bretons, Altmer and Argonians bring a lot to the table. As DPS, Orc, Khajiit, Dunmer and Altmer are really good!

Is Nightblade a good class ESO?

Every class can be a good class in ESO. It all depends on your personal playstyle and whether you choose PvE or PvP. Generally speaking, it's a very good class, especially at DPSing.

Is a Breton Nightblade good?

A Breton is really good at magicka DPS or healing, as their passives support these builds the most.

Is Nord good for Nightblade?

A Nord is exceptionally good at tanking, as their passives support these kind of builds the best.

Is Imperial good for Nightblade?

An Imperial  is exceptionally good at tanking, as their passives support these kind of builds the best.

Is Altmer good for Nightblade?

An Altmer is really good at magicka DPS, as their passives support these builds the most.

Is Dunmer good for Nightblade?

Dunmer are pretty versatile and good at basically everything, even if they aren't really specialized. Especially their fire damage passive is pretty great!

Is Khajiit good for Nightblade?

Khajiit are pretty versatile and good at basically everything, even if they aren't really specialized. Their strongest capability is possibly their crit passive.

Is Argonian good for Nightblade?

Argonians have great passives when it comes to tanking and healing, so that they make great tanks and healers, even in PvP.

Is Bosmer good for Nightblade?

A Bosmer's racial passives are more targeted towards DPS, especially Stamina DPS. Which makes them not necessarily ideal for tanks or healers.

Is Redguard good for Nightblade?

Redguard's racial passives are more targeted to either tanks or Stamina DPS. Even though their skills are even better for tanking.

Is Orc good for Nightblade?

Orcs are exceptionally good at dealing damage. Their passives are especially targeted at Stamina DPS, but they can also be a good choice for Magicka DPS.

What is the best tank class in ESO?

Nords, Imperials and Argonians are really great as tanks in ESO. All of them have great racial passives that support a tanking role.

What is the best healer class in ESO?

Breton, Altmer and Argonians are really great as healers in ESO. All of them have great racial passives that support a healing role.

What is the best DPS class in ESO?

For Stamina, Orcs, Bosmer and Khajiit are the best. For Magicka, Altmer, Khajiit and Breton are really great!

Can Nightblade use magic?

Yes, every class can use magic. It is called Magicka in ESO and is a stat that every race and class has.

What weapon should a Nightblade use?

It all depends on your playstyle. Tanks usually wield a shield and one-hand weapon, whereas Stamina DPS use either daggers or axes and Magicka DPS use staves, as well as healers.

What's the best class in ESO?

It all depends on your playstyle and what you want to achieve in ESO. There's no "one class is the best" as it all depends on the build and whether you want to play it in PvE or PvP.
Shadow Magic is an obscure but powerful form of magic. It was first harnessed by Azra Nightwielder, who was the first to discover that shadow was not simply an absence of light, but a reflection of possible worlds created by forces in conflict. Shadows can be produced by mundane forces such as light hitting a rock, or by more powerful forces such as nations at war. Shadow Magic involves the manipulation of shadows to affect the forces creating it. In this way, Shadow Magic rivals even the power of the Elder Scrolls themselves, having the power to potentially change the past, present, and future through the manipulation of shadow. At its strongest, it even has the capabilities of reaching into and affecting the multiverse. Shadow magic has the potential to carry a high price for its usage, for its nature is to turn on their casters, and shadowmages are often distrusted because of this. Shadow Magic is common around the Western Reach area, but is only occasionally used elsewhere. During the Second Era, it was harnessed by so-called "Nightblades".

One of the more common applications of Shadow Magic is in the creation of Shadow Gates. These are magical barriers often used to protect treasure, and can only be bypassed through use of Daedric relics known as Shadowkeys. Only eleven Shadowkeys are known to be in existence. Shadowkeys also have other unique uses, such as one which was used to resurrect Volstok Violet, restoring him to life from a zombified state. Shadows can also be absorbed to strengthen the mind, or can be coalesced into artifacts such as the Shadow Stabber, a blade made from shadow. Nightblades frequently used Shadow Magic to "step through shadows", teleport short distances, or drain other people's life force. It is possible for shadowmages to use Shadow Magic to visit shadow realms, alternate versions of the world, to aid a different version of themselves. Similarly, shadowmages can summon different versions of themselves to their own world. Death in a shadow realm is the only way to break the connection.

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