ESO Beginner Tank Build

Updated: Blackwood (June 2021)

Information

Welcome to The Tank Club: ESO Beginner Tank Build for The Elder Scrolls Online!

The main objective of these builds are to find easy to obtain, useful Tank gear that will help you on the road while you learn how to Tank.

These builds focus entirely on the Tank and have minimal group benefit. This is an absolutely fine situation when you are a beginner going into content for the first time. It’s much more important that you are alive, have enemies taunted, and have sustain to perform your Tank duties.

Sets like Leeching Plate have not been included here since I believe they hinder your ability to develop as a Tank so we have opted for gear sets that don’t completely carry you through content and give you the opportunity to develop as a Tank and learn all of the fundamentals required for Tank progression.

Once you have developed some experience within the content you are doing it is highly advised to follow the builds we have in the Main Tank Builds, Off Tank Builds and Dungeon Tank sections of the site.

As a Tank it is your responsibility to assist your group by using group buff and enemy debuff gear but you need to obtain the required experience before you need to worry about that!

Check out our Beginner Tank Guide, our Tank Guide section and YouTube channel for information on how to start out with Tanking in the Elder Scrolls Online.

Beginner Tank Build | Elder Scrolls Online | Flames of Ambition

Race

Redguard
Argonian
Imperial

Mundus

The Atronach

Attributes

64 Health

Food

Longfin Pasty with Melon Sauce

Potions

Essence of Health Potion More Info

Gear

PieceSetWeightTraitEnchantment
HeadEngine GuardianMediumSturdyStamina
ShoulderEngine GuardianLightSturdyMagicka
ChestArmor of the SeducerHeavySturdyStamina
HandsArmor of the SeducerHeavySturdyMagicka
WaistArmor of the SeducerHeavySturdyMagicka
LegsArmor of the SeducerHeavySturdyStamina
FeetArmor of the SeducerHeavySturdyMagicka
NecklaceAkaviri DragonguardJewelleryHealthyMagicka Recovery
Ring Akaviri DragonguardJewelleryHealthyMagicka Recovery
Ring Akaviri DragonguardJewelleryHealthyMagicka Recovery
Main Hand Akaviri DragonguardAny 1HDecisiveAbsorb Stamina
Off Hand Akaviri DragonguardShieldSturdyStamina
Main Hand Backup Akaviri DragonguardIce StaffInfusedCrusher

General beginner Tank setup for Blackwood.

This is a very good, affordable way into Tanking for dungeons. This would be a build you use to begin farming other useful Tank sets from dungeons, and also doing your daily pledges for Undaunted Keys for more monster set shoulders. This setup is capable in both Normal and Veteran dungeons.

The strengths of this build are sustain and survival, both are vital components to Tanking and work well when combined with each other. Akaviri Dragonguard will give you additional Health, Healing Taken, Health Recovery, Magicka Recovery and lower Ultimate cost which is great for Tanking, especially on a Dragonknight.

If you can’t afford that set then you could opt to go for Crest of Cyrodiil. The reason why this is good at this stage is because you are likely to be blocking often and if provides you with a safety net just to help if you end up without a healer or in situations where you are taking extra damage. It also helps a lot because not all classes have a burst heal skill that works well for Tanks.

With the self heal from Crest of Cyrodiil you will have more room for error because you have the option of blocking a hit to gain a burst heal. We have our self heal and survival covered, so the other two gear sets we use are sustain based sets because we will die no matter how much healing we have if we run out of Magicka and Stamina. Armor of the Seducer is our first sustain set and this is great for our sustain and survivability.

Magicka Recovery is an extremely important stat for a Tank, since we really need a high Health pool to be able to absorb lots of damage we rely on Magicka Recovery over Max Magicka to help us to sustain our casting of abilities. Magicka is needed for most Tank skills but mostly for our self-healing, our self-armor buff and our self-sustain abilities. Using Armor of the Seducer also reduces the cost of all of our Magicka abilities by 10% meaning we can cast even more because we will have good Magicka Recovery and cheaper Magicka based abilities.

Our final set is Engine Guardian and this is the best sustain set in the game. You want to get whatever weight you can for the Helmet and Shoulder and then you can simply craft the Armor of the Seducer in whatever pieces you have missing but the overall aim is to have 5 Heavy, 1 Medium, 1 Light so just work your crafted gear around whatever monster set you can get. Engine Guardian is such a highly active set, it will be with you in combat nearly 100% of the time meaning it is always giving you some kind of resources. It heals or gives you Magicka or Stamina, the set is random and you can’t choose what resource you want to receive but since its such an active set, it will help you a lot over the duration of a fight.

For some classes this is better than others, for a DK and Sorcerer for example they have abilities that cost Magicka and give back Stamina. DK has Igneous Shield which costs Magicka and will give back Stamina via the Helping Hands passive. Sorcerers have Dark Deal while the Warden has Bull Netch. All classes have access to the Mages Guild skills Balance or Spell Symmetry which costs Health to give back Magicka. So effectively on some classes whichever resource you get from Engine Guardian it can be converted back into Stamina which is the hardest resource for Tanks to sustain and obtain.

Engine Guardian Looted: Veteran Darkshade Caverns II – Helmet. Shoulder buy with Undaunted Keys via Maj.

Armor of the Seducer Crafted: 3 Traits research needed.

Akaviri Dragonguard Looted: Eastmarch, Buy from Guild Traders.

Alternative Gear Options:
Crest of Cyrodiil Looted: Cyrodiil, Buy from Vlastarus Elite Gear Vendor or Guild Traders.

Torug’s Pact Crafted: 3 Traits research needed.

PieceSetWeightTraitEnchantment
HeadLord Warden / Engine GuardianHeavySturdyStamina
ShoulderLord Warden / Engine GuardianHeavySturdyHealth
ChestEbonHeavySturdyStamina
HandsEbonHeavySturdyHealth
WaistEbonHeavySturdyHealth
LegsEbonHeavySturdyStamina
FeetEbonHeavySturdyHealth
NecklaceWormJewelleryArcaneMagicka Recovery
RingWormJewelleryArcaneMagicka Recovery
RingWormJewelleryArcaneMagicka Recovery
Main HandWormAny 1HDecisiveAbsorb Stamina
Off HandWormShieldSturdyStamina
Main Hand BackupWormAny StaffInfusedCrusher
This is a nice build for starting Normal Trials and even Off Tanking in Veteran Trials when you are experienced enough. The gear used is all dungeon gear so you should use the dungeon setup and get yourself into the dungeons to farm this gear. The sets used here are all Tank sets you are going to use at some point as a Tank in all content so it’s worth picking up as early as possible.

The reason these sets have been chosen is because they are all “aura” based sets which means that you are going to be providing your group some nice buffs but they require no effort for you to give or maintain them, they are automatically applied to you and your allies just by being in the same group. You should look at trying to get into trials such as Cloudrest (Galenwe) and Sunspire (Yolnahkriin) as these Trials have gear that is extremely important for Tanks. Other useful sets are listed on the Tank Sets page.

Normal Trials are incredibly basic and you should have no major issues Tanking in this content using this gear. Mechanics can virtually be skipped and the damage is very low, the main priority for you is just holding taunt of enemies and staying alive. This build will get to started with learning the environment for trials.

Ebon is our main Tank set here. This set provides us with some nice Max Health benefits but also gives all of our nearby group members an extra 1k Health which helps the Damage Dealers to stay alive.

This set is the a less selfish version of Plague Doctor which is also a Health boosting set but only for you, when entering group content you should always look to add any suitable group buffs that you can and with Ebon being so incredibly easy to apply to your group and helping the group to survive it is an excellent set to use.

Worm Cult might look like a strange “Tank” set initially but as it was mentioned already in the dungeon build, Magicka recovery is extremely important for Tanks to sustain their casting, self-healing, self-armor buffs and self-sustain skills. This set once again is applied just by being in the same area as group members and they will all benefit from additional Magicka Recovery. The reason we have to use this set on the Jewellery and Weapons is because it is a Light Armor set so we cannot use it on the body as a Tank.

With sticking to the “Group Buffing” mentality here you can use the Bloodspawn, Lord Warden or Sentinel of Rkugamz monster sets. The 2 BEST monster sets are Encratis’s Behemoth for Magicka groups and Tremorscale if you have Stamina damage dealers. You do not have to use these sets at this stage, you could also use Engine Guardian if you need extra self-sustain or Earthgore if you are not being healed very well by the healers.

You can use a number of sets rather than Worm Cult for normal trials however other sets won’t buff your groups as easily and will require you to actively cast and monitor when the buff is active and when to reapply so it doesn’t run out. Other sets could include: Yolnahkriin, Frozen Watcher, Alkosh, Powerful Assault and Galenwe.

Engine Guardian Looted: Helmet from Darkshade II & Shoulder buy with Undaunted Keys from Maj.

Ebon Looted: Crypt of Hearts I & II.

Worm Looted: Vaults of Madness.

Abilities

Dragonknight

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For other useful skills and passive check out the Dragonknight and General Skills pages.

Necromancer

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For other useful skills and passive check out the Necromancer and General Skills pages.

Nightblade

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For other useful skills and passive check out the Nightblade and the General Skills pages.

Sorcerer

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For other useful skills and passive check out the Sorcerer and General Skills pages.

Templar

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For other useful skills and passive check out the Templar and General Skills pages.

Warden

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For other useful skills and passive check out the Warden and General Skills pages.

ESO Beginner Tank Videos

The ULTIMATE ESO Tank Guide 2021 | Elder Scrolls Online
The Tank Club: Lecture 1 - Sustaining as a Tank | Elder Scrolls Online
The Tank Club: Lecture 2 - Surviving as a Tank | Elder Scrolls Online