Hello there! It's me, PawHammer (or Jasel Umena), from the Dragon Nest EU server. Most of you people will know me for being a forum moderator but, on top of that, I am also a very enthusiastic player. I do enjoy this game a lot and I play mostly for fun, but I too can try hard sometimes and make my way through endgame content (at the time of writing this guide, we are already speaking about post-revamp Defensio and I am preparing for RUDN's release!). I have been a tank player ever since I begun playing and my favourite aspect of gameplay is standing in front of the bosses' face and laugh at them while I block their attacks (what can I say? I started as a guardian!) but this guide involves a completely different class to your usual tank. Today, we'll be speaking about our fantastic paw-wielding friends.
Defensio is an AGI based class that gains attack power with that stat. It is a class that features the following advantages:
- Easy access to crit cap due to it being an AGI based class.
- Easy access to Final Damage due to it having 40% passive final damage that can be increased to 60% when buffs are up.
- Extremely high defense values.
- Great survivability.
- Great mobility, both horizontal and vertical.
- Decent to good damage depending on build and playstyle.
- Good offensive party buff.
- Buggy class: some skills of hers have a certain random factor added to them due to the faulty way in which they've been programmed (see leap over or beyond the wall).
- Peculiar gameplay: some people will find some of the possible playstyles boring or repetitive, or flat out complicated.
- High learning curve: besides being the “easier” machina due to how forgiving this class is with mistakes and it being easy to perform a basic rotation, performance of this class is greatly affected by its pilot and their playstyle of choice.
- Non elemental class: will have to deal with the conversion jade penalty. Not a huge disadvantage anyway.
- Worst ultimate in the game: Will comment on this later.
Defensio, let's be honest, is a cool looking class. A badass beast woman carrying a huge powerful knuckle gear that draws the enemies' attention to her in order to keep her teammates safe while blowing all of her foes up with the power of her main skill Taunting Blow. But before you consider taking this class on, you need to ask yourself if defensio is the right class for you. Want an independent, relatively easy class that deals a considerable ammount of damage and is very survivable? Or perhaps you want an agile, untouchable class that can deal with agro management with minimal risk? Can you focus under pressure and make decisions at the speed of sound? If you answered yes to the previous questions you probably will find defensio amusing and interesting to play (Yeah, definitely you are not playing this class for the free 60% final damage that will save you huge ammounts of gold in the future, why would you?).
Defensio is a very interesting class to play as once you get into its playstyle, and it's actually pretty fun to use. Her skill tree is, as non-awakened classes are, pretty much irrelevant as long as you have some core skills maxed. The spare sp can be then injected in utility skills, skills you like to use for the fun of it, or towards some sort of pvp hybrid freak build. Defensios can slightly modify their builds according to their prefered playstyle, so here's the basic skeleton build:
Now that you have some idea on how to build your own defensio (Ikea, is that you?), it would be cool if we spoke a little bit more about her skillset and her possibilities. Think of this section as a miscellaneous kind of thing, that will basically be my way of explaining all the good points of the class together with some “how to use X skill”.
Ever since the revamp, there has been many new Defensio players appearing here and there. Many of them end up abandoning the class for various reasons, among them being the unintuitive playstyle. One would expect a class with such a name and classed as a tank to be one hell of an immovable rock that can simply stand at the face of the boss and take all the hits to her face without worrying about taking damage, but the fact is defensio is arguably squishy (lacks hp increase actives, damage reduction passives and only has an active 20% reduction on leap over and 100% on air shove). This means that if you are looking for a tank with huge reductions and more newbie-friendly, you'd be better playing a guardian or a destroyer. This does not at all mean defensio is useless though. Defensio's strength lies within her versatility. Capable defensio pilots who know the class well enough are capable of both outputting insane ammounts of damage, being unkillable main tanks or even doing both at once. The difference? Gear and playstyle.
Defensio is part of Dragon Nest, and a relatively new class soo bugs are to be expected. In Defensio's case, things can get pretty ridiculous sometimes, so here's what you can expect to find if you play her for long enough. NOTE: I am in no way encouraging you to attempt to use these bugs in your advantage, just informing you of those bugs that can have a noxious effect for your performance or have fun with.
Here's a small section where I will simply start writing about simple doubts one can have about the class in a Q/A way. Mostly irrelevant for people who are good Defensio players already, but might be useful for both non defensio players and newcomers to the class.
GENERAL TANKING TIPS:
After reading this guide, you'll probably end playing any of the styles mentioned above. No matter which one you pick, just due to the fact you are a tank class, it should be of interest to you to know some basics about tanking that will make your life and your party's easier. Here's some advice to follow while you are the person that has to take the agro (be it because you are the party's tank or because your party tank died and you have to assume the role).
Extra episode: 95 cap defensio and CM3
The arrival of 95 cap has brought us the introduction of Defensio's class mastery 3. If you are playing defensio as tank, or as a damaging tank, this CM3 is mostly irrelevant and features no utility, but it is not terrible.
95 Cap overall has not brought many changes to defensio, so everything you see in this guide still applies. If you follow the Offensio playstyle, you may want to try using CM3 as your damage dealing tool as opposed to normal taunting blow, to reduce your utility completely and maximize your damage by a tiny bit.
Builds wise, you can max lariat by leaving your gear steps at level 1, but level 12 or 16 lariat will allow you to keep your 93 cap build intact and have some spare sp to invest in other skills you like.