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Nightblade Tank PvE Build ESO – Darkness

Nightblade Tank PvE Build ESO – Darkness

Build Written By: Dottz Gaming – PC NA

Role: Tank

Patch: Update 40

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Setup
    1. Gear
    2. Attributes
    3. Skills
    4. Vampire vs. Mortal
    5. Champion Points
    6. Other Important Info (Food, Mundus, Race, Potions, Passives)
  3. Contact Info
  4. Update Log


Welcome to DottzGaming.com’s nightblade Tank Build PvE, Darkness, for the Elder Scrolls Online!

Nightblades make really solid tanks if built and played correctly. While most people like to think that nightblades are incapable of tanking higher level content, they couldn’t be more wrong. If you play on the strengths that the nightblade has, you can create a powerful nightblade tank that can take on not only vet DLC dungeons, but veteran trials as well. The Darkness build has run through multiple Vet DLC dungeon achievement runs, as well as vet trial hard mode runs, so if you choose to run this setup you’ll be building your character up for success!

There are a lot of factors that vary in this build depending on if you are tanking dungeons or trials. Some are different gear choices and some are different skill choices, and all of this will be outlined below!



Nightblade Tank PvE Build – Trials Main Tank
Gear Slot Set Weight Trait Enchant Acquisition
Head Tremorscale Heavy Infused Prismatic Vet Volenfell
Shoulders Tremorscale Medium Sturdy Health Undaunted Chest
Gloves Turning Tide Heavy Sturdy Health Shipwright’s Regret
Legs Turning Tide Heavy Infused Prismatic Shipwright’s Regret
Chest Turning Tide Heavy Reinforced Prismatic Shipwright’s Regret
Belt Turning Tide Heavy Sturdy Health Shipwright’s Regret
Boots Turning Tide Heavy Sturdy Health Shipwright’s Regret
Necklace Saxhleel Champion Jewelry Infused Block Cost Reduction Rockgrove
Ring Saxhleel Champion Jewelry Infused Magicka Recovery Rockgrove
Ring Saxhleel Champion Jewelry Infused Magicka Recovery Rockgrove
Weapon 1 Saxhleel Champion 1h Weapon Decisive Absorb Stamina Rockgrove
Shield 1 Saxhleel Champion Shield Sturdy Prismatic Rockgrove
Weapon 2 Saxhleel Champion Ice Staff Infused Crusher Rockgrove
Nightblade Tank PvE Build  – Trials Off-Tank/Dungeons
Gear Slot Set Weight Trait Enchant Acquisition
Head Bloodspawn Heavy Sturdy Prismatic Vet Spindleclutch 2
Shoulders Bloodspawn Heavy Sturdy Health Undaunted Chest
Gloves Torug’s Pact Heavy Sturdy Health Crafted
Legs Torug’s Pact Heavy Sturdy Prismatic Crafted
Chest Ebon Armory Heavy Sturdy Prismatic Crypt of Hearts
Belt Torug’s Pact Medium Sturdy Health Crafted
Boots Ebon Armory Heavy Sturdy Health Crypt of Hearts
Necklace Ebon Armory Jewelry Infused Block Cost Reduction Crypt of Hearts
Ring Ebon Armory Jewelry Infused Magicka Recovery Crypt of Hearts
Ring Ebon Armory Jewelry Infused Magicka Recovery Crypt of Hearts
Weapon 1 Torug’s Pact 1h Weapon Decisive Absorb Stamina Crafted
Shield 1 Torug’s Pact Shield Sturdy Prismatic Crafted
Weapon 2 Torug’s Pact Ice Staff Infused Crusher Crafted

NOTE: The sets needed for a trials group will vary per group. Be sure to check with your group’s leader to see what sets they want you to run.


What your attribute distribution is going to look like is based on the race you choose. You should have at least 30k health, but no more than 45k health unless you’re in a fight that needs high health. After that, dump the rest into stamina and magicka (just make sure to have more stamina than magicka). I personally try for around 35-40k health depending on the setup and situation.


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ESO-Hub Skill iconESO-Hub Skill iconESO-Hub Skill iconESO-Hub Skill iconESO-Hub Skill iconESO-Hub Skill icon

Main Bar – Sword and Shield: Pierce Armor, Heroic Slash, FLEX, Dark Cloak, Leeching Strikes, Aggressive Horn

Back Bar – Ice Staff: Silver Leash, Inner Rage, Refreshing Path, Elemental Blockade, Mirage, Soul Siphon

Flex Skill Options

The build has 1 primary flex spot on the front bar; you can fill that slot based on what build you’re using and what is needed at the time. In terms of any changes to the back bar, most of the time, Silver Leash is used. But, if I am in a specific fight where Silver Leash is not necessary, I’ll also swap in another flex skill. The options for flex skills are as follows:

  • Defensive Stance
  • Deep Thoughts
  • Sap Essence
  • Overflowing Altar
  • Shielded Assault
  • Bone Surge
  • Mass Hysteria
  • Efficient Purge

I also recommend getting Shield Discipline, the ultimate from the One-handed and Shield skill line. In certain fights where stamina sustain is going to be a real challenge and dropping block isnt the best option, this can be substituted in for Aggressive Horn to significantly help with stamina sustain.

Vampire vs. Mortal

For this build you’re going to play as a mortal. Vampire was changed in Greymoor, and we were only really using the skill line for the passives that it had. Now, there are simply to many drawbacks to justify using it.

Champion Points

The list below showcases the order in which champion points should be acquired, the number of points you need to place into that perk and whether or not it needs to be slotted in the CP bar. The Warfare CP perks increase your damage and mitigation and are the most important, the Fitness tree has some miscellaneous sustain and defensive perks and the Craft tree has crafting and non-combat bonuses. The Craft CP points are entirely customizable to however you want, or you can follow the list below.


  • Eldritch Insight – 20
  • Tireless Discipline – 20
  • Quick Recovery – 20
  • Preparation – 20
  • Elemental Aegis – 20
  • Hardy – 20
  • Duelist Rebuff – 50 (Slotted)
  • Unassailable – 50 (Slotted)
  • Bulwark – 50 (Slotted)
  • Enduring Resolve – 50 (Slotted)
  • Blessed – 20
  • Piercing – 20
  • Battle Mastery – 40
  • Flawless Ritual – 40


  • Boundless Vitality – 50 (Slotted)
  • Rejuvenation – 50 (Slotted)
  • Fortified – 50 (Slotted)
  • Tireless Guardian – 20
  • Fortification – 30
  • Hasty – 16
  • Hero’s Vigor – 20
  • Tumbling – 30
  • Nimble Protector – 6
  • Soothing Shield – 50 (Slotted)
  • Defiance – 20
  • Savage Defense – 30
  • Bashing Brutality – 20
  • Sprinter – 20
  • Mystic Tenacity – 50


  • Steed’s Blessing – 50 (Slotted)
  • Breakfall – 50
  • Wanderer – 15
  • Steadfast Enchantment – 50
  • Rationer – 30 (Slotted)
  • Liquid Efficiency – 75 (Slotted)
  • Treasure Hunter – 50 (Slotted)
  • Fortune’s Favor – 50
  • Gilded Fingers – 50
  • Soul Reservoir – 33

Other Important Info

Buff Food

Longfin Pasty w/ Melon Sauce or Bewitched Sugar Skulls (Max Health, Magicka & Stamina)


Atronach – Increased Magicka Recovery


  1. Imperial
  2. Nord
  3. Argonian


Tri-Stat (Restore HP, Mag and Stam) (Bugloss, Columbine and Mountain Flower)


Class (all), Medium Armor (all), Heavy Armor (all), One-Handed and Shield (all), Destruction Staff (all except tri-focus), Fighters Guild (All except intimidation), Undaunted (all), Racial (all), Alchemy (Medicinal Use)


If you have any questions about the build, join our discord server and ask @Dottz about the build!

Update Log

2/25/2018 – Build created.
5/31/2018 – Build writer changed and build overhauled for Summerset Isles.
9/5/2018 – CP updated for wolfhunter
10/31/2018 – CP updated for wolfhunter, off tank setup removed
1/31/2019 – New build writer and build completely overhauled
2/28/2019 – Front bar/back bar enchants swapped, CP 300 setup added
5/22/2019 – Attributes changed, Ebon changed the Claw of Yol for trials main tank setup
8/14/2019 – No changes for scalebreaker
10/21/2019 – No changes for Dragonhold
2/24/2020 – Alkosh replaced with Ebon in main setup, Akaviri Dragonguard replaced with Torug’s in off-tank setup, front bar trait changed from infused to decisive on all setups
5/26/2020 – Vampirism removed from the build
8/24/2020 – main tank gear overhauled, off tank monster set updated
11/2/2020 – no changes for markarth
3/9/2021 – changed CP and gear, removed old gear setups
3/23/2021 – adjusted traits/enchants/attribute spread
6/2/2021- cp Updated & small piece enchants changed
8/23/2021 – changed head/chest/leg traits
11/1/2021 – no changes to build
3/14/2022 – monster helm changed
6/10/2022- gear and cp changed
8/22/2022 – no changes for lost depths
11/9/2022 – no changes for firesong
3/14/2023- no changes for Scribes of Fate
6/5/2023 – changed main gear
8/24/2023- no changes for update 39
11/6/2023 – no changes for update 40