SWTOR 5.0 Telekinetics Sage PvE Guide by Sion

SWTOR 5.0 Telekinetics Sage PvE Guide by Sion.

Intro to Telekinetics Sage

The Telekinetics Sage is a ranged burst dps class that offers some of the best utility for a dps class in the game.  This class is easy to play but hard to master, especially if you want to take on the hardest content in the game.

Ratings

Single Target Damage: 1/10

With 5.0, Telekinetics has been nerfed pretty hard. We are currently dead last among the dps specs. We will still be viable for HM, but as far as NiM goes, I find it unlikely that we will be able to do the damage unless the rest of the specs are so far above the dps checks that our low damage is still enough

AoE Damage: 5/10

Although our AoE is not as good as it used to be, Telekinetics Sages still have some really great AoE damage.  With Telekinetic Wave and Force Quake, we have incredible burst AoE, and with very little resource management we can spam Force Quake for a long time without having to worry about running out of Force.

Burst Damage: 6/10

Like everything else, our burst has suffered due to the 5.0 changes. The one upside is that you can use Force Potency on Turbulence and see some actual benefit. We still do decent burst, and we can control it with Mental Alacrity and Force Potency. The major upside is that our burst is simply more frequent than most classes.

Raid Utility: 9/10

Sages bring excellent raid utility with them into any group.  We bring with us a copious amount of abilities including our pull (though used almost exclusively for trolling raid members it does have its niche uses), battle rez, cleanse, raid buff, force and AoEdebuffs, self and off heals, bubble, and the ability to completely mitigate some mechanics via our Force Bubble.

Survivability: 8/10

Even the Sages have Light Armor, we are not as squishy as one would think.  We have a bubble that lasts for 30s that is refreshable every 15s, a passive that allows us to have 9% additional damage reduction, and we have another shield that gives us invulnerability for 8s.  Additionally we have utilities that make our bubbles stronger and our threat dump and large self heal grant damage reduction as well. All of this combined with our ability to heal ourselves in a pinch, allows us to survive well in fights.

Gearing

The following numbers are taken from Bant’s Optimal Stats thread on the SWTOR Forums.  In case there is any confusion E=Enhancement (these include implants and earpiece), A=Augment, and C=Crystal.  As a DPS we want the Focused Retribution and Serendipitous Assault Relics.

Eternal Commander MK-3, Tier 1: Artifact (230 ilvl): 7405+-216 DPS @ 49.5 APM

  • 5901 Mastery (Stim)
  • 3183 Power
  • 1543 Critical (7xE, 1xA, 2xC)
  • 1056 Alacrity (11xA)
  • 735 Accuracy (3xE, 2xA)

Eternal Commander MK-13, Tier 2: Artifact (234 ilvl): 7611+-225 DPS @ 49.5 APM

  • 6128 Mastery (Stim)
  • 3181 Power
  • 1614 Critical (6xE, 3xA, 2xC)
  • 1056 Alacrity (11xA)
  • 760 Accuracy (4xE)

Eternal Commander MK-15, Tier 2: Legendary (236 ilvl):8092+-246 DPS @ 50.1 APM

  • 6317 Mastery (2xA)
  • 3424 Power
  • 1691 Critical (7xE, 2xC)
  • 1256 Alacrity (1xE, 11xA)
  • 736 Accuracy (2xE, 1xA, Stim)

Iokath MK-3, Tier 3: Artifact (240 ilvl): 8352+-258 DPS @ 50.3 APM

  • 6385 Mastery (1xA, 1xC)
  • 3506 Power
  • 1746 Critical (4xE, 7xA, 1xC)
  • 1313 Alacrity (5xE, 3xA)
  • 733 Accuracy (1xE, 3xA, Stim)

Iokath MK-5, Tier 3: Legendary (242 ilvl): 8692+-273 DPS @ 50.4 APM

  • 6637 Mastery (1xA, 1xC)
  • 3694 Power
  • 1792 Critical (4xE, 7xA, 1xC)
  • 1363 Alacrity (5xE, 3xA)
  • 743 Accuracy (1xE, 3xA, Stim)

I would advocate for foregoing any mastery augments and using either crit or alacrity, and only using crit crystals. I suggest this for the sake of ease, and because I know that the difference will be negligible if not unnoticeable. I also would advocate for using an accuracy stim in all tiers and adjusting according. Bant has provided the various accuracy options for each gear tier to help with this.

Set Bonus

With 5.0 the old Dread Master set bonus is not BiS at max gear tier. Anything lower than that, and you can probably still get away with it. I would recommend switching it out for the full Ultimate Exarch set bonus once you get 240s.

Utilities

Skillful

clip_image002 Psychic Suffusion Force Wave heals you and up to 7 affected allies for X-X. Not really worth taking as a dps.
clip_image004 Jedi Resistance Increases damage reduction by 3%. Always take this. With Light Armor any free damage reduction is welcome.
clip_image006 Tectonic Mastery Increases the damage dealt by Force Quake by 25%. Boss fight with adds? Take this utility. Works great with Resonating Vibrations passive.
clip_image008 Pain Bearer Increases all healing received by 5%. Does not affect stolen life. I often take this for the same reason as Jedi Resistance.
clip_image010 Dizzying Force Reduces target’s accuracy by 20% for 8 seconds after Force Lift ends. Additionally, your Force Lift affects up to 2 additional standard or weak enemies within 8 meters of the target. PvP/leveling utility. Not worth taking.
clip_image012 Benevolent Haste Benevolence increases the movement speed of the target by 50% for 6 seconds. This effect cannot occur more than once every 12 seconds. This is more of a healer utility, and situational at that. It won’t do much for dps specs.

Masterful

clip_image014 Blockout Activating Cloud Mind grants Blockout, which increases damage reduction by 25% for 6 seconds. Very useful for mitigating large hits. I use this on most fights as an extra defensive CD.
clip_image016 Mind Ward Reduces the damage taken from all periodic effects by 15%. Take this on fights with non-cleansable dots.
clip_image018 Valiance Reduces the damage taken by the target of your Rescue by 25% for 6 seconds. Additionally increases the healing done by Force Mend by 30%. Useful because of the increased healing to Force Mend. I take this on most fights to alleviate some of the healing on myself.
clip_image020 Confound Targets affected by your Weaken Mind are slowed by 30% for its duration. PvP Utility.
clip_image022 Telekinetic Defense Your Force Armor crackles with Force Energy, blasting attackers for X energy damage when it absorbs direct damage to you. This effect cannot occur more than once each second. PvP utility. May have some use in fights with heavy AoE damage, but will most likely not be worth taking.
clip_image024 Staggering Strategem Lowers the cooldown of Force Stun by 10 seconds. In addition, targets stunned by your Force Stun deal 25% less damage for 10 seconds when Force Stun wears off. Extremely situational. This is mainly a PvP ability, but it is useful in mitigating damage from energy spheres in Brontes HM/NiM.

Heroic

clip_image026 Egress Force Speed grants Egress, removing all movement impairing effects and granting immunity to them for the duration. Good for fights where you need to break out of slows. Can be helpful in Underlurker or Reaches phase in Brontes.
clip_image028 Mental Defense Reduces all damage taken while stunned by 30%. Additionally, reduces all damage taken from area effects by 30%. An absolute must take on every fight. 30% AoE and Stun damage reduction. What more could you want?
clip_image030 Metaphysical Alacrity Reduces the cooldown of Force Speed by 5 seconds, Force Slow by 3 seconds, and Force Barrier by 30 seconds. In addition, Force Speed lasts 0.5 seconds longer, Mental Alacrity increases your movement speed by 100% while active, the active cooldown of Force Speed is finished when Force Barrier ends. Even in high mobility fights this is not worth taking. Too little benefit to use a utility point.
clip_image032 Kinetic Collapse Force Armors you place on yourself erupt in a flash of light when they end, blinding up to 8 nearby enemies for 3 seconds. This effect breaks from direct damage. PvP utility.
clip_image034 Containment If your Force Lift breaks early from damage, the target is stunned for 2 seconds. In addition, Force Lift activates instantly. Could be situational, but really not worth taking over other utilities.
clip_image036 Force Wake Force Wave unbalances its targets, immobilizing them for 5 seconds. Direct damage dealt after 2 seconds ends the effect prematurely. Mostly a PvP utility. It does come in handy for NiMStyrak though.

Legendary

clip_image038 Force Mobility Turbulence, Healing Trance, and Force Serenity may be activated while moving. This should be taken on every fight. Increased mobility is always a good thing.
clip_image040 Swift Rejuvenation Restoration grants Swift Rejuvenation, making your next ability an activation time activate instantly. The effect cannot occur more than once every 30 seconds and lasts 15 seconds. This is just a bad utility. I cannot think of a single fight I would use this, even as a healer, let alone as a dps.
clip_image042 Life Ward Your Force Armor, Force Barrier, and Enduring Bastion heal you for 1% of your total health every second for as long as they last.  This healing scales up to 4% with the charges of Enduring Bastion. With the nerf to this utility, there is no real reason to take this anymore.
clip_image044 Valorous Spirit Force Mend increases your damage reduction by 15% for 6 seconds. Additionally, reduces the cooldown of Force Mend by 5 seconds. This is a good one to take. This provides another small damage reduction cooldown, and lets you get more of your amazing self heal with a reduced cooldown.
clip_image046 Ethereal Entity Using Phase Walk to return to its marked location grants Ethereal Entity, keeping you from being lept to or pulled and making you immune to interrupts and ability activation pushback for the next 10 seconds. Additionally, the cooldown of Phase Walk is reduced by 15 seconds and all defenses are increased by 30% for the duration of Ethereal Entity. With the removal of the AoE damage reduction from this utility it is much less attractive. The reduced cooldown is nice but not necessary in PvE. The increase to defense is nice, and it may prove to be a useful defensive cooldown.
clip_image048 Impeding Slash Lash the target with your lightsaber, dealing X-X weapon damage and immobilizing it for 3 seconds. When the immobilization effect ends, the target is slowed by 50% for 3 seconds.

Replaces Saber Strike.

Cooldown: 15s

Range: 4m

PvP utility. This is completely useless in PvE

Passives and Abilities

Telekinetic Discipline Passives

clip_image002 Tidal Force – Disturbance, Telekinetic Burst, Turbulence, and Force Quake grant Tidal Force when activated. Tidal Force immediately finishes the cooldown on Telekinetic Wave and makes your next Telekinetic Wave activate instantly and consume 50% less Force. Cannot occur more than once every 10 seconds.
clip_image004[5] Resonating Vibrations – Increases the critical chance of Force Quake by 15% and its critical damage bonus by 30%.
clip_image006[5] Telekinetic Effusion – Direct Force attacks grant Telekinetic Effusion when they critically hit, reducing the Force consumed by your next two non-channeled Force attacks by 75%.
clip_image007 Concentration – Reduces the pushback suffered while activating Telekinetic Wave, Disturbance, Mind Crush, Turbulence, and Telekinetic Burst by 75%. Additionally, you have a 25% when taking direct damage to gain Concentration, which causes your next Disturbance or Telekinetic Burst to activate instantly.  This effect cannot occur more than once every 8 seconds and lasts up to 15 seconds.
clip_image009 Mental Momentum – Mind Crush has a 25% chance to tick twice and makes its targets vulnerable for 45 seconds. Vulnerable targets take 5% more damage from Force attacks. In addition, when you activate Turbulence, there is a 25% chance the ability will produce a second blast that strikes the same target for 25% damage.
clip_image011 Cascading Force – Increases the maximum range of your Force attacks by 5 meters. Additionally, Telekinetic Wave immobilizes all affected targets for 0.5 seconds and slows all affected targets by 50% for 6 seconds.
clip_image013 Clamoring Force – Force Speed gives 2 stacks of Clamoring Force, which allows Disturbance and Telekinetic Burst to be activated instantly.
clip_image015 Telekinetic Momentum – Disturbance, Telekinetic Wave, Telekinetic Gust, and Telekinetic Burst have a 25% chance to produce a second telekinetic blast that strikes the same targets for 25% damage. Additionally, Telekinetic Wave overwhelms its targets for 45 seconds. Overwhelmed targets take an additional 10% damage from area attacks.
clip_image017 Telekinetic Focal Point – Damage dealt by Telekinetic Wave and Telekinetic Gust has a 100% chance and damage dealt by Disturbance and Telekinetic Burst has a 50% chance to grant Telekinetic Focal Point, which increases alacrity by 1%. Stacks up to 5 times. Lasts 15 seconds.
clip_image019 Flowing Force – Telekinetic Momentum is twice as likely to trigger while Mental Alacrity is active. Additionally, increases the duration of Mental Alacrity by 5 seconds and reduces its cooldown by 15 seconds.
clip_image021 Reverberation – Increases the critical damage dealt by Telekinetic Wave, Mind Crush, Turbulence, and Telekinetic Gust by 10%.
clip_image023 Tremors – Each Telekinetic Momentum and Mental Momentum reduces the active cooldown of Mental Alacrity by 1 second. In addition, being interrupted grants unshakable for 4 seconds. This can only occur once every 15 seconds.
clip_image025 Mental Continuum – Direct damage dealt by your Mind Crush and Telekinetic Wave abilities refreshes the duration of your Weaken Mind on affected targets. In addition, Telekinetic Bolt increases your Force regeneration by 10% for 10 seconds. Stacks up to 3 times.
clip_image027 Telekinetic Refuge – Telekinetic Burst increases your damage 3% for 10 seconds. Stacks up to 3 times.
clip_image029 Magnifying Vibrations – Project deals 20% more damage to targets affected by your Mind Crush.

Rotational Abilities

clip_image002[8] Mind Crush [MC] – Crushes the target’s mind with the Force, instantly dealing X-X kinetic damage and an additional X kinetic damage over 6 seconds.

Range: 35m, Activation: 2s, Force: 36, Cooldown: 15s

clip_image004[7] Weaken Mind [WM] – Weakens the target’s mind, dealing X internal damage over 18 seconds.

Range: 35m, Force: 32

clip_image006[7] Turbulence [T] – Deals X-X internal damage to a single target. Turbulence automatically critically hits targets affected by your Weaken Mind.

Range: 35m, Activation: 1.5s, Force: 45, Cooldown: 9s

clip_image008[5] Telekinetic Gust [TkG] – Blasts the target with a quick gust of Force power, which deals X-X damage and grants Force Gust, which reduces the activation time of your next Mind Crush by 0.5 seconds. This effect lasts up to 12 seconds.

Range: 35m, Force: 45, Cooldown: 15s

clip_image010 Telekinetic Wave [TkW] – Sends a wave of telekinetic energy that deals X-X damage to up to 8 targets within 8 meters of the primary target.

Range: 35m, Activation: 2.5s, Force: 45, Cooldown: 6s

clip_image012[5] Telekinetic Burst [TkB] – Summons a burst of telekinetic power that deals  X-X energy damage and slows the target by 30% for 3 seconds.    Replaces Disturbance.

Range: 35m, Activation: 1.5s, Force: 30

clip_image014 Project[P] – Throws debris at the target for X-X kinetic damage. Standard and weak targets are additionally stunned for 3 seconds.

Range: 35m, Force: 36, Cooldown: 6s

Non-Rotational Abilities

clip_image002[11] Force Quake – Channels the Force into the ground at the target area, consuming 60 Force and dealing X energy damage to up to 8 targets within 8 meters over the duration of the channel. Standard and weak targets have a 33% chance to be stunned by the quake each second.

Range: 35m

clip_image004[9] Benevolence – Heals a friendly target for X-X health.

Range: 30m, Activation: 1.5s, Force: 50

clip_image006[9] Rejuvenate – Immediately heals the target for X-X, plus an additional X over 9 seconds.

Range: 30m, Force: 27, Cooldown: 6s

clip_image008[7] Force Mend – Immediately restores X-X health to you. Cannot be used on others.

Cooldown: 30s

clip_image010[5] Restoration – Cleanse a friendly target of up to 2 negative mental or Force effects.

Range: 30m, Force: 12, Cooldown: 12s

clip_image012[7] Rescue – Lowers the target’s threat by a moderate amount and, if the target is a group member, pulls the target to your location.

Range: 30m, Force: 27, Cooldown: 1 minute

clip_image014[5] Force Speed [FS]– Increases movement speed by 150% for 2 seconds. Does not break stealth.

Cooldown: 30s

clip_image016[5] Phase Walk – Activating this ability marks your current location for 10 minutes. When this ability is activated again, if you are within 60 meters of the marked location, you instantly return to the marked location
clip_image018[5] Revival – Revives an incapacitated ally. This ability is usable while in combat. When used, all group members can neither use nor be the target of an in-combat revival for the next 5 minutes.

Range: 30m, Activation: 1.5s, Force: 27, Cooldown: 5 minutes

Offensive and Defensive Cooldowns

clip_image002[14] Mental Alacrity [MA] – Your connection to the Force shifts, granting 20% alacrity and immunity to pushback and interrupts for 15 seconds.
clip_image004[11] Force Potency [FP] – Grants 2 charges of Force Potency, which increases the Force critical chance of your direct attacks and heals by 60% and increases the ranges of Telekinetic Throw and Cascading Debris to 30 meters.  Each time a direct Force ability critically hits or a channeled Force ability is activated, 1 charge is consumed. Lasts 20 seconds.

Cooldown: 1m 30s

clip_image006[11] Force Empowerment [FE] – Increases mastery, endurance, and presence for you and your Operation group members within 40 meters by 10% . Lasts 10 seconds

Force: 45, Cooldown: 5 minutes

clip_image008[9] Force Barrier – Projects a Force Barrier around you, granting immunity to all control, damage, and negative effects while channeled.  This ability does not respect the global cooldown and can be used while controlled.  While you are protected by Force Barrier charges will build up and grant you Enduring Bastion, a shield that absorbs an amount of damage based off the charges that are present when Force Barrier  ended. Enduring Bastion also grants immunity to interrupts.

Cooldown: 3 minutes

clip_image010[7] Force Armor – Surrounds the target in a Force shield that lasts 30 seconds and absorbs a high amount of damage.  The target becomes Force-imbalanced and cannot benefit from Force Armor again for 20 seconds.
clip_image012[9] Cloud Mind  – Wipes enemies’ thoughts, instantly lowering your threat by a moderate amount.

Additionally grants 25% damage reduction for 6 seconds. (with Blockout utility)

Cooldown: 45s

clip_image014[7] Advanced Polybiotic Attack Adrenal – Increases Power by 825 and decreases all healing done by 20%. Lasts 15 seconds.

Cooldown: 3 minutes

Rotation

Opener

This opener applies regardless of whether you are using the Dread Master 4-piece and Ultimate Exarch 2-piece or the Ultimate Exarch 6-piece.

MC -> MA, WM -> FE, Adrenal, FP, T ->TkW ->TkG ->TkB ->TkB ->TkB -> T ->TkW ->TkB -> MC ->TkG -> P -> T ->TkW -> Priority System

clip_image002[16]

There are two things I should note here. The first is that in the opener I use Mental Alacrity before casting Weaken Mind.  This is done because the increased alacrity increases the tick rate of the DoT. This carries over whenever Mind Crush and Telekinetic Wave refresh Weaken Mind as well. This allows us to squeeze a little extra damage out of Weaken Mind. With the increased tick rate, Weaken Mind can now tick right before a refresh from Mind Crush and Telekinetic Wave, which will then cause it to tick again, thus gaining just a little bit more damage from Weaken Mind.  The second is that the Project after your 2nd Mind Crush may need to be used prior to the Telekinetic Gust depending on alacrity and when the DM set bonus procs if you are using it.

Priority System

The nice thing about Telekinetic Sage is that it is a priority system. Because of this you don’t have to worry about where to pick up if you experience downtime due to boss mechanics. You simply use the ability with highest priority and work from there.

There are really only 6 abilities that factor into the priority system, but the caveat to that is Weaken Mind must be on your target. That being said, the priority is as follows:

  1. Turbulence
  2. Mind Crush (with proc)
  3. Telekinetic Gust
  4. Project (only while Mind Crush is on the target)
  5. Telekinetic Wave (with proc)
  6. Telekinetic Burst

Turbulence must always be used on cooldown. It is an autocrit every 9 seconds (with no alacrity) and therefore must take priority over everything else. This leads us into Mind Crush, which should be used only with the Force Gust proc.  Telekinetic Gust is next due to its decent damage and because of the Force Gust proc. Although Telekinetic Wave hits rather hard, its proc’s 10s internal cooldown pushes it rather low on the priority provided the proc is not about to fall off, which it never should.  When everything else is on cooldown, Telekinetic Burst is your primary filler. I say primary because of the new passive that makes Project barely better than Telekinetic Burst so long as Mind Crush is on the target.

AoE Rotation

There are a few ways of going about this depending on the priority of the group of adds that are being killed. However, regardless of the scenario you want to prioritize Telekinetic Wave and Force Quake. If they will die pretty quickly this is all you want to do. If there is a higher health add in among lower health ones, then you can throw in Weaken Mind and Turbulence and then continue with Telekinetic Wave and Force Quake. You should not be using Telekinetic Gust, Telekinetic Burst, or Mind Crush though.

Notes on Offensive Cooldowns

Mental Alacrity is by far your best offensive cooldown.  I always try to use this right before a Turbulence. However, I will use it earlier if a Telekinetic Gust will benefit from its use sooner than a Turbulence would. The reason is a combination of your Telekinetic Momentum and Flowing Force Passives. You want to make sure you can fit as many of your hardest hitting abilities into a Mental Alacrity block so don’t just use it on cooldown, but never delay it longer than one Turbulence cycle.  While talking about Mental Alacrity, it is also worth talking about ability usage during the time that it is active. Traditionally, it has been considered important to prioritize Telekinetic Burst over Mind Crush during Mental Alacrity because Flowing Force doubles Telekinetic Burst’s chance to proc. I have found, however, that it is still not worth delaying Mind Crush.  If you look at how much damage is done by each ability, Telekinetic Burst would be better, when it procs, as far as instant damage goes. However, when you consider how much additional damage Mind Crush does with its DoT, that is still for only a 1 gcd cast, MC comes out ahead in damage even if it doesn’t proc once and Telekinetic Burst does. This is under the assumption that they are critting more or less equally. Because of this, and what I have seen in my own parses, I find it more beneficial to never use Telekinetic Burst over Mind Crush.

Next we come to Force Potency.  I try to use Force Potency when under the effects of Mental Alacrity as often as I can, partially because of the reduced cooldown the increased alacrity brings me, but also because with the increased chance to proc on abilities we are making an almost guaranteed crit. As far as ability usage goes, always Turbulence and Telekinetic Wave. Thankfully Force Potency properly buffs Turbulence so it should always be used in conjunction with it. The third stack should be used on Telekinetic Gust if possible, then Project if it is buffed, and finally Telekinetic Burst if the former two are not possible. Using Force Potency is always a little bit of weighing your options with what you will have available. Delaying it for a short time is okay, if you will get your hardest hitting abilities to align, but like all your offensives, too long of a delay will make you lose dps. Each situation is different and it just comes down to knowing the fights and knowing your class in order to determine what to use and when.

Force Empowerment should not be used in the opener if you will need it later for a tight burn phase.  It is always important that you use your offensive cds appropriately for the maximum potential dps, instead of just when they are available. That being said, you don’t want to over delay these abilities either, and some discretion on the player’s part is necessary.

One final note for Force Speed is that there is no dps gain to use it on cooldown since you are simply making the damage of the Telekinetic Bursts come at the beginning of the gcd instead of the end. Where this does have use though is within proc windows, the most relevant being relic procs. When a casted Telekinetic Burst would fall outside of the proc, but an instant wouldn’t, you would use Force Speed for the instant proc.

Sample Parse

Here is a link to a parse. Please note that this is still mostly 224 gear with the 186 4-piece. With this being old gear, the damage was not very different from 4.0, especially when the large damage nerfs to the spec are taken into account. Note that all things pertaining to the parse were done on my Lightning Sorc. I do not raid on my Sage, in fact I play him very little. I thought it better, instead of making a separate parse, to use the Sorcerer’s because it better illustrates what the class does. After all, it is exactly the same, ignoring animations and ability names.

How to Analyze Your Parse

The most important part you should look at is if you are using Turbulence, Mind Crush, and Telekinetic Gust on cooldown.  The way to check this is to look at the ability usage section and then look at the Avg Time. At the very minimum this should be the same as your abilities cooldown, heavily varying by alacrity. As a note, Turbulence’s cooldown only starts once the cast finishes.  This means with no alacrity, the average usage of Turbulence

should be 10.5 seconds. While talking about Turbulence, the crit % should 100%. If it is not you have messed up somewhere.

As far as damage profile goes, Turbulence should be your highest damage because it is your hardest hitting ability, followed by Telekinetic Burst, Weaken Mind, Telekinetic Wave, Telekinetic Gust, Project, Mind Crush (crushed) which is the DoT, and Mind Crush which is the initial hit per cast. What follows will be your Telekinetic Momentum and Mental Momentum procs. Due to large amounts of rng, the amount of damage, and their occurrences, will vary heavily.

Visual illustration based on the above parse:

clip_image002[18]

Lightning Bolt – TK Bust, Thundering Blast -Turbulence, Affliction – Weaken Mind, Chain Lightning – TK Wave, Lightning Flash – TK Gust, Shock – Project, Crushing Darkness – Mind Crush, Forked Darkness – Mental Momentum, Forked Lightning – Telekinetic Momentum

  • Shadowofdeath

    As someone who mained Light Sorc/TK sage from 2.8 the current state of the class makes me very sad, Because I prety much only raid I had to switch to my Assassin Tank which is probably the class I know second best.

    Although the spec has been going down hill since 3.0 it’s really hit rock bottom. I hope (really hope) the devs get around to fixing the class before 6.0. I’d really like to bring my sorc out of retirement

    • Sion

      Yeah the current state of the class is abysmal. It isn’t just Lightning/TK though. Madness/Balance is pretty bad too. 3.0 was definitely the start, but 3.3 was the patch where they really hit the class hard. 4.0 wasn’t the best, but at least you could do all the content with it. 5.0 is just sad

      • Shadowofdeath

        Yeah, I managed to justify running my Sorc right up until the information from the 5.0 PTS started leaking out. It wan’t great but at least peopel could still pull half decent numbers. I think half the issue came from everyone complaining about the AOE potential (which wasn’t really that bad compared to other classes) and the dev solution was to nerf the single target itno the ground. It’s simply a case of the devs having no idea whatsoever what they’re doing to classes

        • ” AOE potential (which wasn’t really that bad” quite the understatement 😛

          I’d go as far as to say that tk used to have the best AOE potential ingame (while still keeping strong single target)

  • Ceelia

    It’s about time you posted this Sion.

    • Sion

      Quiet you

    • UberSamoyed

      He’s been hunting elusive herds of Meece…

  • Dianiss

    A few quick proofreading notes:

    In the note on Valiance:
    “Useful because of the increased healing to Unnatural Preservation.” should be Force Mend

    In the description of Telekinetic Defense:
    “Your Force Armor crackles with electricity…” should be “reverberates with Force energy”

    In the description of Ethereal Entity:
    Two references to “Shifting Silhouette” should be “Ethereal Entity”

    In the description of Impending Slash:
    “Strike the target….” should be “Lash the target….” and YES this one is just being nit-picky.

    Force Quake is listed a second time under “Offensive and Defensive Cooldowns”

    Under Opener:
    “FE, Adrenal, Rck, T” should be FP (Force Potency instead of Recklessness)

    “The second is that the Shock after your 2nd Mind Crush…” should be Project.

    Under Notes on Offensive Cooldowns:
    “I try to use Force Potency when under the effects of Polarity Shift as often as I can….” should be Mental Alacrity.


    For the record, I don’t do this to nit-pick or show off. I do it because I’m kind-of the opposite of you in that I play Sage A LOT and rarely the Sorcerer, so I easily notice it when I see “foreign” terminology pop up.

    • Sion

      Yeah I understand. I thought that I had gotten them all when I switched this over from Lightning, but obviously some escaped me. I have no idea why Force Quake is under Off and Def CDs, but it shouldnt be there. It isn’t there in the original copy so I think it must have just been a formatting error.

  • asdffasdjlsdf

    I know this is a PVE guide but do you have any recommendations for PVP? Since we don’t need accuracy at all would we put those extra stats into power?

    • Sion

      I know that a lot of people who PvP swear by power. I think its use is not as good personally. I run the same stat setup and just throw more into crit and alacrity, but i dont play ranked on my Sorc as a dps. On the off chance that I do, I heal, and I’m honestly not even that good. For regs it doesnt matter whatsoever. Take my advice with a grain of salt though

  • eckostylez

    I personally don’t see many issues with the Sage TK in terms of raiding. The burst is extremely high and very useful in boss fights where buffs are used in the beginning and there are no mechanics for the first 20-30 seconds. I routinely burst at about 13-14k, which gradually becomes 8.5k throughout the fight (depending on mechanics). I am not in full 242 yet either (still rocking 1 224 set piece)

    • Corwin

      Thing is other burst classes burst for much more. Just look at Gunnery, for example.

      • eckostylez

        This is true, but the Gunnery burst was already better than Sage TK (pre-5.0). However, the Sage TK is gonna get much more crit hits, which almost levels out the overall DPS in a given fight

        • UberSamoyed

          You’re trolling….right?!

          • eckostylez

            Not at all.

    • in HM/vet content tk is fine
      in NiM/master content it’s gonna be tricky; for some bosses tk will do perfectly fine, but for the hardest fights you might want to bring something else instead

      • eckostylez

        For some yes, plus their CDs are also useful. Use to clear UL with 1 tank and 2 sages using Force Barrier during the cross mechanic. I just don’t agree with the idea that it has been nerfed completely.

        • doesn’t really matter whether or not you agree with the idea
          it’s a fact; tk has been nerfed hard. it wasn’t in a great place in 4.0 to start with

          tk dps has dropped compared to others in 5.0; it’s not as strong as it used to be (doesn’t mean it’s useless though)

          • eckostylez

            “It’s a fact”
            > proceeds to give opinions.
            This is like people who complained about Sage TK in 4.0 and couldn’t break 6k DPS. There are people who are good with the class and those who aren’t. If you can’t break 8k DPS in 5.0 with a Sage TK, then guess what the problem is?

            • alright, the facts:
              most of our abilities have seen damage being reduced by around 15%

              notice though that I wasn’t talking about myself.. I would be comfortable taking my sage to NiM, and I would probably get close to the top on raid dps (<3 you splash dmg)
              this doesn't mean that tk didn't get nerfed

              • eckostylez

                15% is far too high. If you scale with gear and compare 4.7 and 5.0, it is probably half that (7-8%). I certainly agree that sucks, but is definitely not a nerf. We’ve seen actual portions of this game getting completely nerfed, the 5.0 changes to Sage TK isn’t one of them.

              • Sion

                Let me get this straight. You agree that all of our core abilities were lowered by 7-8%, which is accurate, and yet you still don’t think we were nerfed? What is your definition of nerf? To put things in a similar perspective, in 4.0 Sorc dps was about 5.7% behind the top damage spec. We are now over 14% behind. Fact: Sorcerer dps was nerfed

              • UberSamoyed

                Alternative facts in play here…lol.

              • eckostylez

                I clearly state what I think having something nerfed is. I’ve also only been talking about Sage TK here. If I’m still able to play end game content and run NiM ops as a Sage TK (without being the lowest DPS throughout the op), then I would not consider Sage TK to have been nerfed. You forget that post 3.0 patches overpowered Sage TK incredibly (and was widely complained about on reddit and the forums). People are going to complain no matter what.

              • Sion

                A nerf is a change to a game that reduces the desirability or effectiveness of a particular game element. It’s a nerf. And I don’t forget. I remember Force Storm being broken, and then 3.3 came around and Bioware nerfed it and all of our single target damage at the same time. Post 3.3 Lightning/TK was not overpowered. Not even close. And if you are referring to the PvP players complaining about Sorc, that is not because Lightning was OP. Sorc utility were really strong compared to everyone else, but madness was still the preferred pvp spec.
                If you are clearing NiM bosses where dps actually matters than that’s great. Maybe Sorc dps is still viable. I don’t know because I haven’t raided since 5.0 dropped. That doesn’t change the fact that the class was nerfed. It does less damage and is less desirable. Those are objective facts. It doesn’t matter if you think the class wasn’t nerfed. It was.

              • eckostylez

                Sorry was thinking of 2.0 where sage tk was overpowered. We would purposefully use sage tk for running EC NiM because of this. Don’t really care if you think it was nerfed or not, the class is completely playable from what I have seen. If we use your definition of ‘a nerf’, then everything BWA does is a nerf since someone always complains (especially here on dulfy).

              • Sion

                Like I said, if it is capable of clearing the content, great. That doesn’t change the fact the class was nerfed. It isn’t complaining, its just stating reality and pointing out the current issues.

              • UberSamoyed

                Please refrain from employing your own personal definition of a word in a group setting if you want to engage in honest debate. It would be like me calling a Horse a Moose and insisting everyone else understands and does the same.

              • eckostylez

                “own personal definition of a word” of a word that is slang and does not have a standard definition.

              • UberSamoyed

                You’re a silly person. This is a gaming site full of gamers. We all use the word in our daily vernacular. So…if the word has an accepted meaning, then it has it here. I mean…if someone says “The Devs took a nerf bat to Darkness Sin’s Reflect”…one wouldn’t think they abolished the thing. It typically means it was reduced to some lower level of reflect.

                The analogy applies here. Nerf was never intended to mean “the class (was) completely unplayable for any end game content.” It simply means it’s effectiveness was greatly reduced. This is common knowledge stuff on a gaming site.

                I guess it’s up to you if you want to communicate with people here or speak your own made-up language. Actually, that might be entertaining. Please continue…

        • right now, sustained single target dps on a tk sage is objectively much lower than any other class (maybe expect for sharpshooter slinger)
          there’s classes which can do about 9k – 10k dps single target sustained
          tk has trouble getting over 8k

          ofcourse, our utility and aoe potential makes up for a lot, but still

          • eckostylez

            If you have trouble getting over 8k DPS on a single target, then your gearing and rotations are bad (my guess is crit). Do target dummy at 1.5m health. It should be cleared in 3 minutes or less with at least 175+ crit hits (anything less than that means your gearing and rotations need to be improved). This includes a minimum of 5 uses of Force Speed, which gives 10 instant proc of TkB.

            • I have the 3rd spot on the parsely leaderboard for tk sage right now, which is only slightly over 8k
              go link me a parse of yours where you do 9k dps on dummy, and I’ll be convinced that single target potential can be on par with average dps

              crit hits is pure rng, and force speed is pure fluff imo

              • eckostylez

                Numendar – if that’s you then there’s no point talking to you just by looking at your rotation. No adrenal lol. Calling force speed a fluff when you get 10 insta proc TkBs (which means higher APM and thus higher DPS). Calling Crit hits RNG when it’s most definitely not.

                Once again, my argument has never been that the changes to Sage TK are good. I just don’t agree with everyone crying about it being nerfed when all it takes is proper adjustments (like using an accuracy stim).

              • – I can’t be bothered spending money on dummy parsing
                – insta tele burst takes 1 GCD, which is the same as the cast time for tele burst; so there’s no difference unless an insta tele burst hits inside an adrenal/relic window
                – crit hits is by definition RNG; there a chance you crit; if RNG gods smile upon you you will have more crit hits than when they don’t (ofc, gear plays a big factor too)

                about your other msg:
                so you agree that our damage has been reduced?
                you do know that that’s what people generally mean when they say a class got nerfed?

                the only way that you could be correct in saying it isn’t nerfed, is if you use a different meaning of the word nerf; which is worth mentioning

              • eckostylez

                Who says I can’t be bothered? I’m at work right now and credits are the easiest thing to get in this game (my main alone has 14 bil)

                The cast time for TkB is not the same, not sure where you are getting that. Somehow how you think 10 insta proc TkBs are useless when it comes to DPS.

                – Crit hits are not, by any definition, RNG. RNG would be the command crates, chance cubes, and cartel packs. Crit hit is a chance based on percentage, which is based on gear. That is not RNG whatsoever.

                Nerfed would be making the class completely unplayable for any end game content. I am never at the bottom of DPS in StarParse whenever we run operations. If I was and had a 15% difference between me and the next lowest DPS, then yeah I would say the Sage TK was nerfed. But that’s never happened.

                There are certain utilities the Sage TK has which make it a great choice for certain operations (self-cleansing makes it great for DF).

              • “my main alone has 14 bil” interesting, since the credit cap is 4.3 bil 🙂
                I was just saying that that’s why I’m not using adrenals on a dummy parse, while you made it sound like that’s an indication that I would be clueless

                okay, so the cast for TkB is 1 GCD right?
                an instant ability takes 1GCD right?
                what’s exactly the difference? the instant will still trigger the GCD

                I’m not sure you know what RNG means..
                it’s short for Random Number Generator/Generated
                in short, anything that is based on a randomized number/chance is by definition RNG
                critical hits in this game are based on a randomized chance, and are therefore, RNG
                (btw, cmd crates, chance cubes and cm packs are based on percentages that BW coded into the game, which makes them similar to crit chance; the only difference is that your gear doesn’t influence the %)

                well, using your definition of nerfed, I would agree with you
                but for most people (including myself), nerfed is the same as reduced/weakened
                so by my definition, tk is nerfed; by yours it isn’t
                that’s because we use two completely difference meanings of the word

                and I never said TK was bad, or useless
                I still end up on top dps half the time (even in NiM)
                and ignoring dps, TK has great utilities, and amazing of-healing

              • eckostylez

                4.3 was the old limit and no one knows what the new limit is (see http://i.imgur.com/MidNbXI.jpg)

                Even though there’s a GCD, there’s no casting time (therefore higher APM).

                Critical hits are not RNG. You go on and agree that gear influences the percentage. If you can change the chance of getting a critical hit, then it’s not RNG. You can’t change the chance of getting an item from command crates/chance cubes/cartel packs.

                I guess we’ll just agree to disagree on saying it has been nerfed.

              • ah I see, the new limit is probably 18 446 744 073 709 551 614 (google 64bit unsigned integer; the old limit was 32bit)

                we seem to agree on the state of TK, what we disagree on is what ‘nerfed’ actually means, so yeah 🙂

                no casting time doesn’t mean higher APM.. if the casting time is exact same length as the GCD, then that would make the possible ability usage equal

                crit CHANCE isn’t RNG, crit HITS is RNG
                see my explanation of the meaning of the word RNG above
                just an example, with the same gear I had 196 crit hits, and later I had 175 crit hits
                there’s no difference in gear, so unless the difference is magic (or usage of potency), which it isn’t; the difference could maybe be because whether or not you get a crit is based on a randomly generated number, which is then compared to your crit chance %? and therefore is RNG?

                if you’re interested in the actual programming: what some games/applications use, it simply generates a random number (aka RNG) between 0 and 1; and if it’s below the chance % (below 0.4, if your crit chance is 40% for example), then something happens
                so lets say the RNG machine gives out a 0.3 for 1 hit, then a 0.6 for the next: the 1st is a crit, the 2nd isn’t
                so whether you agree or not, fact is that any calculation based on a randomly generated number, is by definition RNG.

                since critical/shielded hits are based on a randomly generated number, compared to the chance %; crits/shields are RNG

                it’s RNG that you have some control over yes, changing your gear increases your chances; but it’s still RNG none the less

                it’s possible to get 100% critical hits in a parse, all you need is extreme patience or luck

                also, an often overlooked element of RNG for TK, is our momentum procs, they give some neat extra damage, while being rather random (the chance is 25%/50%, in reality I’ve seen it anywhere between 10% and 50%)

              • btw, higher APM doesn’t have to mean higher DPS
                if for example you would use force mend on cd, your AMP would go up by 2
                using force speed on CD will increase your APM by 3 (just from force speed itself)
                so you can have 5APM higher as sage, with no effort, and no actual DPS gain

                note, if insta tele burst actually has shorter GCD than the cast is, then your APM would be more than 5 higher, anything above 5APM increase would be a potential dps buff

  • Pork

    Good guide loin

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  • bill

    why on earth do you use force potency on turbulence when its a auto crit when you can use that auto vrit on another ability like i pop it right behind turbulence not before it

    • bill

      oh and you should have force speed in your rotations cause it procs TB

      • bill

        oh yeah and this utility i always take Metaphysical Alacrity because force speed in my rotation means i can proc TB 5 sec early its very helpful

      • Sion

        I say in the guide that using force speed to instant proc Tk Burst is not a dps gain except under the circumstance where the damage happening at the beginning of the gcd will cause it to be inside an adrenal, relic, or other damage boost proc that would not occur if the damage came at the end of the gcd, ie if you cast Tk Burst. As far as Metaphysical Alacrity, its use is highly situational. If there was any real dps gain from using instant proc Tk Bursts it would take a higher priority, but because there is no real difference most of the time, this utility isn’t a necessity.

    • Rex

      Supercrit. Any wasted crit chance is converted to Surge which buffs crit damage.

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  • Nick

    There are so many things wrong about this guide… where should I begin…

    Sages are capable of NiM numbers. We are at the low end of the spectrum, but it is easily possible to do 8-9k in a raid on a TK sage, which is enough to clear any boss you run in to.

    You never use potency in front of turbulence. The super crit does not apply to potency/turbulence. They said this in the 4.0 post about the crit bonus, and it hasn’t changed for 5.0. The correct order is crush > weaken mind > alacrity > adrenal > (raid buff) > Turbulence > potency > project gust > wave > burst > burst > burst for the opener.

    Anything over 40%/70% crit is a diminishing return, a heavy one at that. 1675 is the cap for crit. Anything over 12.5% alacrity has no effect on your gcd, or your cast time, or your force regen until you get past 20%, therefore the cap for alacrity is 1400. Accuracy should never be under 110% for any reason ever.

    The dread master gear remains best in slot throughout all tiers if you can live with the reduction in HP. You are essentially gaining 600pts of alacrity and losing 450pts of mastery. You could aug into master if you wanted and make up this difference.

    Force speed has no net gain or loss to dps, it should only be used in raid during movement heavy phases where you need to attack on the go.

    For large add groups with lots of health (think tos), the aoe rotation is to dot all targets, forcequake, wave, forcequake x 3, wave, repeat. This is the largest amount of dps you can do for aoe pulls. If there is an aoe boss fight, you are in the wrong spec and should be in balance.

    • Mem

      ^ Can confirm all of this actually….

      • UberSamoyed

        Can confirm sad, jealous troll.

    • Sorc

      Also can confirm, guide is horribly wrong in so many ways. No idea what you are parsing but if you think you cannot pull NiM numbers on a sorc/sage, you are doing something wrong.

    • potency with turbulence works since 5.0
      Balance for aoe boss fights is bullshit (especially since slightly changing your rotation will let you use wave twice as often, with a tiny single target loss)

      The rotation for tos trash is 100% correct

      Can also confirm that despite the fact that tk has nearly the worst single target sustained potential ingame, it’s still viable for most (maybe all) nim content

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