5.0 Class Guides SWTOR

SWTOR 5.0 Madness Sorcerer PvP Guide by Emiri

SWTOR 5.0 Madness Sorcerer PvP guide by Emiri.


Intro to Madness Sorcerer

Madness is currently the best, yet most difficult, Sorcerer DPS spec in SWTOR. In this guide for PVP Madness Sorc, I will be showing strategies for dueling, utilities, and rotations for certain situations and I will explain why to use them.


This is what I have in 230 gear. Once I get fully geared, I will update this guide for the higher gear tiers.

I currently run with 41.71% crit (1833) and 8.19% alacrity (823). This build is more for applying pressure than it is for single target damage. Although this is more of a pressure build, the high alacrity (more dot ticks), and the high crit (more crits on your dot ticks and high surge/crit multiplier) guarantee good single target damage. I would recommend putting at least one power augment in. When I get fully geared, I am thinking that I will have 12% alacrity, 100% accuracy, and 42% crit with the rest put into power.


My normal build along with the way I have my bars set up.

Another build that I ran in 4.0 quite often, and have run occasionally in 5.0 is 41.95% crit – i ran 40% in 4.0 – with everything else put into power. I am assuming that this will go up to 45% in 242 gear, as you would have around 40% in the best gear in 4.0. I will give an update once I find out for sure. I find that this build is really good for single target damage and puts out a lot of damage. Obviously, you still want to dot spread with this build despite it being a single target build.


Key Abilities

clip_image002 Force Lightning: Deals x energy damage to the target and consumes 40 force over the duration of the channel. Also slows the movement speed of the target by 50% and immobilizes weak and standard enemies.

Force Lightning is one of your most important abilities. Over the duration of the channel, it builds up four stacks of Wrath, causing your Demolish or Lightning Strike to deal 25% more damage and consume 50% less force. You should almost never cancel this channel because if you do, you may accidentally hardcast Demolish or Lightning Strike. This ability also has a 20% chance to cause Lightning Burns, restoring 2 force and causing energy damage.

clip_image004 Demolish: Crushes the target with devastating force, dealing kinetic damage initially, plus an additional kinetic damage over 6 seconds. The target also becomes vulnerable for 45 seconds, increasing the damage taken from Force attacks by 5%. Replaces Crushing Darkness.

Demolish is one of your most important damaging abilities. This ability is your hardest hitting dot. The initial damage not too significant, but after the dot finishes ticking, this ability ends up being your hardest hitter. It can be proc’d by having 4 stacks of Wrath, which you get from channeling Force Lightning. Wrath increases the damage dealt by 25% and reduces the force cost by 50%. Never hardcast this ability. Once you hit level 44, Crushing Darkness and Demolish have their duration increased by 3 seconds, making this ability’s dot last 9 seconds.

clip_image006 Creeping Terror: Paralyzes the target in fear, dealing internal damage over 18 seconds and immobilizing it for 2 seconds. The immobilizing effect cannot occur more than once every 9 seconds.

When you are kiting or in a duel against melee, make sure that you are reapplying this dot every 9 seconds. This is your best ability for kiting. I always open with this dot. Once you hit level 52, you will get healed for 10% of the damage death each time Creeping Terror deals damage.

clip_image008 Death Field: Creates a death field at the target location, dealing internal damage and stealing life from affected targets to heal you for 10% of the damage dealt. Strikes up to 8 targets within a 5-meter radius.

This ability is your dot spread and is also part of your burst window. You will notice later on that I like to use it before Force Leech. I do that because it flows better and Force Leech restores 15 force when used on targets affected by Deathmark. However, you may want to use this after Force Leech because the cast time of Force Leech is one GCD. Because of this, it makes the burst appear much more significant and may cause panic. Doing this does not increase your overall damage, however. This ability applies 15 stacks of Deathmark to all targets it hits. Targets with Deathmark take 10% more damage from your damaging periodic effects. With 5.0, when you hit level 68, this ability has a 50% chance to emit something called a Death Echo. The Death Echo does damage to the target it affects and 7 other targets within a 5 meter radius. If you read the passive, you will note that it doesn’t just work on a primary target. You have a 50% chance to emit a Death Echo from EVERY target that is hit by Death Field. That means that if you hit 8 people with Death Field and all the people emit a Death Echo, you will be doing massive amounts of damage. Along with getting your dot spread at level 28 with Death Field, your Death Field also gets a passive where it overwhelms the target, causing the target to take 10% more damage from area damage. This absolutely does not mean that you should be spamming Force Storm. Very rarely should you be using Force Storm. Madness Sorcerers are much more useful when they actually go through their rotation and focus more on dot spreading. Force Storm does not receive any buffs in Madness, unlike in Lightning.

clip_image010 Force Leech: Steals life from an enemy, dealing internal damage to the target and healing you for 50% of the damage dealt.

This ability is also part of your burst window. It is your hardest hitting burst attack and the heal is very helpful. I find that it heals for around 10% of my health when I crit with it. This ability has a 60% chance to cause a Lightning Burn, restoring 2 force and dealing energy damage to the target. As I said previously, I like to use Force Leech after Death Field. I do this because it flows better and it restores 15 force when used on targets affected by Deathmark. You typically won’t have a problem with force unless you’re going to be fighting for a long while or you’re doing a lot of offhealing. If you anticipate that a fight or duel may last a long while and you have to offheal a lot, always use Force Leech after Death Field. Always make sure that you use Force Leech on a target that you have Affliction up on. Force Leech does 25% more damage on a target with Affliction.

clip_image012 Affliction: Casts a powerful Force affliction upon the target that deals internal damage over 18 seconds.

This ability is one of your dots. I like to use this dot second. Typically, in a warzone or when I’m dueling melee, I will take the Conspiring Force utility. My kiting is weak, so I use this as a crutch and I find that it also helps out other ranged users in my group. A 30% slow on every target I get with my dot spread is very helpful. Once you hit level 52, you will get healed for 10% of the damage death each time Affliction deals damage.

clip_image014 Lightning Strike: Fires a charge of lightning at the target, dealing energy damage.

This ability is proc’d by having 4 stacks of Wrath, which you get from channeling Force Lightning. Wrath increases the damage done by 25% and reduces the force cost by 50%. Never hardcast this ability. It will result in a loss of DPS and may make force management more difficult.

clip_image016 Force Storm: Calls down a Force storm over the target area consuming 60 force and dealing 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 storm each second.

I felt the need to include this ability because of what I said earlier when I was talking about Death Field. You should use this ability very rarely. If you have your dots on the whole enemy team, you should use it twice at the end of your rotation in place of doing Force Lightning x2 > Lightning Strike. One thing to note is that I would only do this in group ranked and very rarely in solo ranked when your team is running a pressure composition. I would do this occasionally in unranked warzones. Don’t do this very often and don’t use this ability very often. You are much more useful going through your rotation. Death Field grants an Overwhelm debuff to targets it hits, which increases the damage that the target takes from AOE effects by 10%.

clip_image018 Consuming Darkness: Consumes the dark energy around you, restoring 40 force. Utilizing Consuming Darkness makes you Weary, reducing your Force regeneration rate by 2 for 10 seconds. This effect can stack up to 4 times.

This ability gives you force, as you probably can tell by the description. With four stacks, you lose all force regeneration. If you are going to be in a long duel, try to use this at the end of every rotation. Just make sure that you do not use have more than one stack on at a time unless it is absolutely needed that you spam this ability. Very rarely should you ever have to use this in a warzone.

clip_image020 Force Slow: Deals kinetic damage and slows the target’s movement speed by 50% for 6 seconds.

Use this on cooldown on the highest melee DPS in ranked whenever they are not white barred. You can use this in Voidstar to slow people down from getting to the next part of the map. You can use this to get closer to your target for a 1v1 and you can use this to kite melee DPS in a 1v1.

clip_image022 Shock: Shocks the target for energy damage. Standard and weak targets are additionally stunned for 3 seconds.

I typically don’t use this ability. It costs too much force. Try to refrain from using it.

clip_image024 Overload: Deals energy damage and knocks back up to 8 enemies within a 15-meter cone in front of you. Standard and weak enemies are additionally knocked down for 3 seconds.

Use this ability when you are swarmed by melee enemies. This is especially useful when you take the Electric Bindings utility. After I use this, sometimes I will use Force Speed to run away.

Defensive Abilities

clip_image002[7] 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 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.

Use this ability when you are low on health. If you take Corrupted Barrier, I would recommend using this around 10% HP. If you do not take Corrupted Barrier, use it around 40%. This is your strongest cooldown. Sometimes you will want to break this early in order to be unpredictable and get a jump on your enemy. At times, if you think you can win and the target is at very low health and has popped all defensives, you can use Force Barrier to break a stun, making them unable to use double stun tactics to heal up or anything of the sort. Just be smart about this. I’ve done this before and it has almost cost me the duel because I underestimated my opponent.

clip_image004[4] 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. Phase Walk goes on cooldown for 60 seconds when used to return to the marked location.

Some people will use this ability offensively. In my opinion, that is a complete waste of your Phase Walk. I would recommend placing this ability at a place with good line of sight, such as under the ramp going up to the bridge in Makeb Mesa Arena. In warzones such as Novare Coast or Alderaan Civil War, placing it close to a node to get there faster is viable. Just don’t do it very often. Phase walk is a very useful defensive cooldown. Use this ability when you are low on health and you need to heal up using Dark Heal.

clip_image006[4] Static Barrier: Surrounds the target in a lightning shield that lasts 30 seconds and absorbs a high of damage. The target becomes deionized and cannot benefit from Static Barrier again for 20 seconds.

This ability should be used whenever it can be. It is your most important defensive cooldown and if you take Corrupted Barrier, it heals you for 1% every second that it is up. A sorcerer needs as much damage mitigation as possible, and this gives you the mitigation you need.

This ability should be used whenever it can be. It is your most important defensive cooldown and if you take Corrupted Barrier, it heals you for 1% every second that it is up. With the Backlash utility, it give a short hard stun to enemies in the area whenever it is popped. With Lightning Barrier, this ability reflects a small amount of damage back to people who attack you for thirty seconds. This effect does not end when Static Barrier is popped. I advise against taking Lightning Barrier, as it is a weak utility and there are better utilities in the Masterful tier. A sorcerer needs as much damage mitigation as possible, and this gives you the mitigation you need.

clip_image008[4] Resurgence: Immediately heals the target, plus an additional amount of health over 9 seconds.

This is another ability I would recommend always having up. This increases your survivability greatly. It doesn’t give instantaneous gratification, but it makes a noticeable difference and distinguishes between an average sorc and a good sorc.

clip_image010[4] Dark Heal: Heals a friendly target.

This is your burst heal. Only use this when you are los’ing and not taking damage. Using this while you are catching focus is almost useless. You lose a lot of force, lose damage, and lose health while you could be kiting.

clip_image012[4] Unnatural Preservation: Immediately restores health to you. Cannot be used on others.

This is your biggest heal. As it says, it cannot be used on other people. Part of playing a sorc is knowing how much this ability heals you for. Memorize it. Know what you’re going to be healed for when you use this heal. It is very important. You don’t want to be over-healed with this heal. If you take Dark Resilience, this heals for 30% more. If you take Unnatural Vigor, you take 15% less damage for 6 seconds, and the cooldown is reduced by 5 seconds.

clip_image014[4] Extricate: Lowers the target’s threat by a moderate amount and, if the target is a group member, pulls the target to your location.

Use this if a group member is taking damage and needs to get away. If you take Dark Resilience, the target takes 25% less damage for 6 seconds when you use Extricate. In Huttball, you can use this to pull the ball carrier up towards the goal or closer to the goal line.

clip_image016[4] Expunge: Cleanses a friendly target of up to 2 negative mental or Force effects.

This ability is your cleanse. I won’t use it very often unless someone is stunned by a force user and I can cleanse it. Sometimes I will use it on myself when I am dueling a dot spec so that I take less damage from their dots. If you take the Galvanizing Cleanse utility – which I think is somewhat pointless – you will get an insta-cast on your next casted ability. This can only happen every 30 seconds. It is somewhat of an incentive for cleansing. It is much more useful in Lightning spec than it is in Madness so that you can do an insta-cast Chain Lightning > Thundering Blast > procced Chain Lightning combo. One situation it can be useful for in Madness is when you need to get a Whirlwind off and you do not want to get interrupted.

clip_image018[4] Cloud Mind: Wipes your enemies’ thoughts, instantly lowering your threat by a moderate amount.

The only reason you should ever use this is if you take Suppression. Suppression lowers incoming damage by 25% for 6 seconds and is very good for mitigating burst. Aside from that, it is useless in PvP.

clip_image020[4] Reanimation: 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.

This isn’t necessarily a defensive cooldown, but it’s important nonetheless. If you have voice communication with someone in a warzone, you can use this to rez them without them worrying about getting stuck at the door. This is not usable in arenas.

clip_image022[4] Unbreakable Will: Summons the unbreakable will of the Sith, immediately purging incapacitating and movement-impairing effects.

This is your stun breaker. Very rarely should you use this on the first stun. Typically, you do not want to use this on soft stuns or ccs, such as Low Slash, a grenade, and Whirlwind. The only time you should use this to break a soft stun or use it on the first stun is when someone on your team is about to die, or you are COMPLETELY sure you can kill your target.

clip_image024[4] IForce Speed: Increases movement speed by 150% for 2 seconds. Does not break Stealth.

Use this ability when someone jumps to you or you need help kiting. It is your best kiting ability, next to Phase Walk.

Offensive Cooldowns

clip_image002[10] Recklessness: Grants 2 charges of Recklessness, which increases the Force critical chance of your direct attacks and heals by 60%. Each time a direct Force ability critically hits or each time a channeled Force ability is activated, 1 charge is consumed. Lasts 20 seconds.

I previously explained where I like to use this in each rotation. Typically you will use it before Death Field. Recklessness has three charges with the set bonus, so sometimes I use it like Death Field > Force Leech > Unnatural Preservation for the extra health.

clip_image004[6] Polarity Shift: Your connection to the Force shifts, granting 20% alacrity and immunity to pushback and interrupts for 10 seconds.

This is a very useful cooldown. Use this in your opener before Force Leech so that your casted abilities do not get interrupted.

clip_image006[6] Unlimited Power: Increases mastery, endurance, and presence for you and your Operation group members within 40 meters by 10%. Lasts 10 seconds.

I like to pair this ability with Recklessness. It makes a huge difference in DPS and it is a factor in outplaying your opponent in a 1v1.

clip_image008[6] Electrocute: Electrocutes the target, dealing energy damage and stunning it for 4 seconds.

This is, needless to say, your hard stun, meaning that it does not get broken by damage. Typically in a ranked match you will use it on a healer or the highest dps.

clip_image010[6] Whirlwind: Traps the target in a whirlwind for 8 seconds. Non-player, non-standard, and non-weak targets heal rapidly while trapped. Damage causes this effect to end prematurely.

This is your soft stun/cc. As I said before, use this on a healer or the highest dps. Always make sure there are no dots on the target you use this on, or else it will be broken immediately.

clip_image012[6] Jolt: Interrupts the target’s current action and prevents that ability from being used for 4 seconds.

Typically, you will use this on a healer in warzones. The main heals you should interrupt are Innervate or Dark Infusion for Sorcerers, Kolto Injection for Operatives, and Healing Scan or Progressive Scan for Mercenaries. Note that typically Operatives and Mercenaries will bait interrupts. Mercenaries will bait interrupts with Rapid Scan and Operatives will bait interrupts with Kolto Waves and Kolto Infusion. I have also seen Sorcerers bait interrupts with Revivification. Very rarely should you interrupt these abilities.


Utilities for Warzones

For skillful utilities, I like to take Empty Body and Sith Defiance. I take Sith Defiance because the sorc class is very squishy. It is very helpful to have the extra base damage reduction. I like to take Empty Body because it gives me a bonus to my heals. Although Empty Body does not affect leeches, I almost always have my Resurgence up and the bonus to other heals I get is very nice.

For masterful, I take Conspiring Force and Dark Resilience. I take Conspiring Force for the fact that it makes kiting easier and I know from personal experience that it’s frustrating to constantly to have a 30% slow on you. The 30% slow on everybody that you dot spread to is very good. The reason I take Dark Resilience is that I really like the healing bonus and it gives me more utility with the damage reduction on Extricate. Sometimes I will take Suppression. Suppression is very useful if you know other classes and can predict their burst windows. Taking this requires a lot of attentiveness.

For heroic, I take Emersion and Backlash. I take these two because they help a lot with kiting. Kiting is everything as a sorc. With very minimal defensives and the lowest damage mitigation in the game, kiting is everything. Electric Bindings can be useful to keep people off a node for a longer time, can help separate a tank-healer combo, and can also help with your kiting. It can be used in place of Backlash, although I personally prefer Backlash.

For legendary, I take Corrupted Barrier and Force Mobility. The reason for Force Mobility is pretty obvious. It helps A LOT with kiting. Now, Corrupted Barrier is very controversial. The nerf to it makes it seem useless, but it’s really not. It still heals you for quite a bit after you get out of your bubble, so it is very useful in my personal opinion. If you’re not comfortable taking Corrupted Barrier, I would take Unnatural Vigor for the reduced Unnatural Preservation cooldown and the damage reduction after you use Unnatural Preservation.

To sum it up:

  • Skillful – Empty Body and Sith Defiance
  • Masterful – Conspiring Force or Suppression and Dark Resilience
  • Heroic – Backlash and Emersion
  • Legendary – Corrupted Barrier or Unnatural Vigor and Force Mobility

Utilities for Ranked

Normal ranked utilities when ranged is in queue:

  • Skillful – Empty Body and Sith Defiance
  • Masterful – Suppression and Dark Resilience
  • Heroic – Shapeless Spirit and Emersion
  • Legendary – Corrupted Barrier or Unnatural Vigor and Force Mobility

Normal ranked utilities when more melee is in queue:

  • Skillful – Empty Body and Sith Defiance
  • Masterful – Conspiring Force and Dark Resilience
  • Heroic – Backlash and Emersion
  • Legendary – Corrupted Barrier or Unnatural Vigor and Force Mobility

CC oriented utilities (Emersion is optional, but recommended):

  • Skillful – Empty Body and Sith Defiance
  • Masterful – Torturous Tactics and Dark Resilience
  • Heroic – Shapeless Spirit, Emersion, and Haunted Dreams
  • Legendary – Force Mobility and Corrupted Barrier or Unnatural Vigor if you’re not taking Emersion

When there are a lot of Mercenaries in queue:

  • Skillful – Empty Body and Sith Defiance
  • Masterful – Dark Resilience and Suppression or Torturous Tactics
  • Heroic – Combination of Shapeless Spirit with Haunted Dreams, Emersion, and Surging Speed
  • Legendary – Corrupted Barrier or Unnatural Vigor and Force Mobility

When there are a lot of dot specs in queue:

  • Skillful – Empty Body and Sith Defiance
  • Masterful – Dark Resilience and Corrupted Flesh
  • Heroic – Shapeless Spirit and Emersion
  • Legendary – Corrupted Barrier or Unnatural Vigor and Force Mobility

Anti-burst utilities:

  • Skillful – Empty Body and Sith Defiance
  • Masterful – Torturous Tactics and Suppression or Dark Resilience
  • Heroic – Emersion and Shapeless Spirit
  • Legendary – Corrupted Barrier or Unnatural Vigor and Force Mobility

Off-healing focused utilities:

  • Skillful – Sith Defiance and Dark Speed
  • Masterful – Dark Resilience and Suppression
  • Heroic – Emersion and Shapeless Spirit
  • Legendary – Combination of Galvanizing Cleanse with Force Mobility, Corrupted Barrier, or Unnatural Vigor

Utilities for Dueling

As an avid duelist, I have to include this next two parts. Not many guides include dueling strategies and utilities, so I figured I would include this.

Madness Sorcerer:

  • Skillful – Empty Body and Sith Defiance
  • Masterful – Dark Resilience and Corrupted Flesh or Torturous Tactics
  • Heroic – Haunted Dreams and Surging Speed or Shapeless Spirit
  • Legendary – A combination of Force Mobility, Corrupted Barrier, and Unnatural Vigor

Lightning Sorcerer:

  • Skillful – Empty Body and Sith Defiance
  • Masterful – Dark Resilience and Torturous Tactics or Suppression
  • Heroic – Haunted Dreams and Surging Speed or Shapeless Spirit
  • Legendary – A combination of Force Mobility, Corrupted Barrier, and Unnatural Vigor


  • Skillful – Empty Body and Sith Defiance
  • Masterful – Dark Resilience and Conspiring Force
  • Heroic – A combination of Emersion, Haunted Dreams, and Backlash
  • Legendary – Force Mobility and Corrupted Barrier


  • Skillful – Empty Body and Sith Defiance
  • Masterful – Dark Resilience and Conspiring Force
  • Heroic – A combination of Emersion, Haunted Dreams, and Backlash
  • Legendary – Force Mobility and Corrupted Barrier

Concealment Operative:

  • Skillful – Empty Body and Sith Defiance
  • Masterful – Dark Resilience and Conspiring Force
  • Heroic – Emersion and Haunted Dreams or Backlash
  • Legendary – Force Mobility and Corrupted Barrier

Lethality Operative:

  • Skillful – Empty Body and Sith Defiance
  • Masterful – Dark Resilience and Conspiring Force or Corrupted Flesh
  • Heroic – Emersion and Haunted Dreams or Backlash
  • Legendary – Force Mobility and Corrupted Barrier


  • Skillful – Empty Body and Sith Defiance
  • Masterful – Dark Resilience and Conspiring Force
  • Heroic – Shapeless Spirit and Haunted Dreams or Backlash
  • Legendary – Force Mobility and Corrupted Barrier

Deception Assassin:

  • Skillful – Empty Body and Sith Defiance
  • Masterful – Dark Resilience and Conspiring Force
  • Heroic – Haunted Dreams and Backlash
  • Legendary – Force Mobility and Corrupted Barrier

Hatred Assassin:

  • Skillful – Empty Body and Sith Defiance
  • Masterful – Dark Resilience and Conspiring Force or Corrupted Flesh
  • Heroic – Haunted Dreams and Backlash
  • Legendary – Force Mobility and Corrupted Barrier

Marksman and Engineering Sniper:

  • Skillful – Empty Body and Sith Defiance
  • Masterful – Dark Resilience and Suppression
  • Heroic – Emersion and Shapeless Spirit
  • Legendary – Force Mobility and Corrupted Barrier

Virulence Sniper:

  • Skillful – Empty Body and Sith Defiance
  • Masterful – Dark Resilience and Suppression or Corrupted Flesh
  • Heroic – Emersion and Shapeless Spirit
  • Legendary – Force Mobility and Corrupted Barrier

Arsenal Mercenary:

  • Skillful – Empty Body and Sith Defiance
  • Masterful – Torturous Tactics and Suppression
  • Heroic – Haunted Dreams and Shapeless Spirit
  • Legendary – A combination of Force Mobility, Corrupted Barrier, and Unnatural Vigor

IO Merc:

  • Skillful – Empty Body and Sith Defiance
  • Masterful – Dark Resilience or Torturous Tactics and Suppression or Corrupted Flesh
  • Heroic – Haunted Dreams and Shapeless Spirit
  • Legendary – A combination of Force Mobility, Corrupted Barrier, and Unnatural Vigor


In this part, I will be showing my primary rotations, and some other rotations I mess around with that also work pretty well. Keep in mind that rotations in PVP are just guidelines. You’re not confined to these rotations.

My primary AOE/kiting rotation is the following:


After that, it’s mostly a priority system. Place Death Field and Force Leech along with the FL > Demolish combo as they come off CD. Place dots on as they expire. As this is an AOE rotation, switch targets every time you go through the rotation. In this rotation, I like to put Recklessness right before Death Field or Force Leech. If you don’t have the 6 piece set bonus, always put it before the Death Field. Put Polarity Shift before Force Leech so you don’t risk it getting interrupted.

Single Target Rotation:


At the end of this rotation, your Demolish should be back up, so you can start from the beginning. Just don’t forget to reapply your dots. This is more of a PVE oriented rotation because it is much more strict. In this rotation, you have your Demolish off cooldown at the end, so you want to start back at the beginning with the Force Lightning. In this rotation, put your Recklessness and Polarity Shift right before Creeping Terror. If you don’t have the set bonus, just put Polarity Shift before the Demolish, then put Recklessness before Death Field.

AOE Rotation For Ranked Pressure Comp:


Use Recklessness before Death Field and use Polarity Shift before Force Leech. Only use this rotation if you have dots on the entire enemy team and the enemy team is grouped up for the Force Storm.

Ranked Rotation:


Use Recklessness before Death Field and use Polarity Shift before Force Leech. You should almost always be having Resurgence up anyways, but it is even more important in ranked warzones and I am accentuating that with this rotation. Keeping yourself up while being focused should take priority, while still putting out as much damage as you can. Ranked is all about prediction and knowing when you’re going to be focused, so be smart about when you pop Resurgence. Only really pop Resurgence when you are getting focused or are below 100%.

Experimental Rotation 1:


This rotation is meant to maximize your burst. I haven’t used it very often, although it’s still good if used in the right hands. Use Recklessness before Death Field, and Polarity Shift before Force Leech.

Experimental Rotation 2:


This rotation is very strict. If you are going to use this rotation, you HAVE TO start back at the beginning. Your dots should have 1 second left on them assuming you have no alacrity, so you will have to reapply them. All your other abilities will be off cooldown, so you will be fine to start over. Put Recklessness before Death Field, and put Polarity Shift before Force Leech. I use this rotation quite often and I find that it works pretty well. I still prefer the single target and aoe rotations over this, however.

Experimental Rotation 3:


This was the rotation I used for a very long time. It drains your force and I would not recommend using it. It puts out a good amount of damage, but as I said before, it REALLY drains your force. Be careful when using it.


Your only proc is the proc from Wrath. You build stacks of Wrath (up to four) when you successfully hit a target with Force Lightning. Every time you get four stacks of Wrath, you get an insta-cast Demolish or Lightning Strike.


Dueling Strategies

Basic Dueling Practices

In a duel, you should always want to place your Phase Walk in a place where you have good line of sight. Be smart about kiting and try to line of sight as much as you can. Take as much advantage of that as you can. Being that you are the squishiest class in the game, you rely a lot on kiting. Because you are Madness, you need to be more offensive and you can’t offheal as much. Use line of sight wisely and make sure you don’t run out of force. Put Static Barrier on during the countdown and pop Resurgence when there is one second left in the countdown.


Assassins are the hardest counter to sorcs. There is not much I can do to help here. Do what you would with normal melee classes. Kite them away from your Phase Walk. Once you start getting low, Phase Walk and heal to full. As is the case with all other melee classes, your Creeping Terror root and your slows are vital to dueling Assassins. When they shroud or stealth out and you’re low on health, use your insta-cast Whirlwind, run, and heal to full. Sometimes, you will want to pop your bubble and then Whirlwind them right after so you can heal. Just be smart about when you apply your dots when you take Haunted Dreams. Watch for Phasing Phantasm. Phasing Phantasm is a utility that reduces the damage an Assassin takes during Force Speed by 60%, so try to avoid using your hardest hitting abilities while they are using Force Speed.


Marauders are more difficult to counter with the Sorcerer nerf, but they are still one of the easiest to counter. They can be kited rather easily. If you take Haunted Dreams, be smart about when you apply your dots. Keep them rooted and slowed. As is the case with most non-healing classes, try to outlast them and kite them around. Sometimes I will take Suppression if the Mara is a Carnage Marauder and I will use Suppression during their Ferocity window to mitigate the damage. Of course, the first time they use Ferocity you will want to stun them or knock them back so they can’t get their burst in. Annihilation has a longer set up time for the burst, so in the middle of the rotation, that is why you want to knock them back. My rotation for Annihilation is Force Charge > Deadly Saber > Battering Assault > Force Rend > Rupture > Ravage > Frenzy > Berserk > Annihilate > Dual Saber Throw (only when proc’d). Knock the Marauder back right after Ravage. Force Speed away from Carnage and Fury when they jump to you, and run away from Annihilation when they use the Ravage immobilization. Make sure that you watch out for all of their defensives and try not to burst into them. Cloak of Pain reduces incoming damage by 20% and deals minimal damage whenever attacked for 6 seconds, Saber Ward absorbs 25% damage for 12 seconds, Undying Rage reduces incoming damage by 99% for 4 seconds, and Obfuscate reduces the target’s accuracy by 90% for 6 seconds.Try not to burst into any of these defensives, especially not Obfuscate or Undying Rage. Don’t deal any damage into Cloak of Pain, minus your dots. Cloak of Pain refreshes whenever the target takes damage from direct attacks and can last up to 30 seconds. That means 30 seconds of minimal energy damage and 20% damage reduction. Stay within the range of 4-10 meters because they can’t leap to you, nor can they do damage to you because they are out of range. The only exceptions to this are Fury’s Obliterate, Force Scream, Devastating Blast for Carnage, Force Rend, Vicious Throw, Fury’s Force Crush, Fury’s Raging Burst, and Dual Saber Throw.


Jugg is another class that is easy to counter. As is the case with maras, they don’t have enough anti-kiting abilities to utterly annihilate you. The only problem with juggs is that you have to eat right into their Enraged Defense. However, you just need to keep them away from you and keep attacking them during ED. If you do this, you won’t have a problem. Just go straight into it and don’t let it faze you and you will be fine. As is the case with maras, when the jugg jumps to you, force speed away. Watch for Saber Ward during Enrage Defense. Most Juggernauts will use Endure Pain at the very end of a fight, so just kite them around for that time period and wait out the Endure Pain, while using abilities that can be used on the move. Stay within the range of 4-10 meters because they can’t leap to you, nor can they do damage to you because they are out of range. The only exceptions to this are Rage Juggernauts with their Obliterate, Vengeance’s Hew, Vicious Throw, Rage’s Raging Burst, Saber Throw, Rage’s Force Crush, and Force Scream.


Snipers are difficult to counter this expansion because of their heals. As was the case in 4.0, you have to kite them during their casts like Cull and Ambush. If you take Suppression, use Cloud Mind after Plasma Probe if the sniper is Engineering, during Ambush if the sniper is Marksman, or during Cull if the sniper is Virulence. Engineering is probably the most difficult spec to counter because of being unable to line of sight EMP Discharge and Explosive Probe setting off whenever you take damage. When Engineering is casting Series of Shots, you want to line of sight them IMMEDIATELY so that the cluster bombs do not go off. You absolutely do not want Engineering to get a full Series of Shots cast off on you. It’s the same with Ambush and Cull. Ambush, Cull, and Series of Shots – when paired with the cluster bombs from Explosive Probe – will take off a good chunk of your health and you want to avoid this. Typically a sniper will try to roll your Force Leech or your Demolish, so watch for that. Delay the Demolish and interrupt your Force Leech when they roll. When the sniper pops Ballistic Shield, line of sight and make sure you’re out of range so you do not get attacked while they are in their shield. Attacking a sniper with the Ballistic Shield heal utility while the sniper is in Ballistic Shield is futile. You HAVE to wait out this DCD. Try to make the Sniper waste their Entrench as well. Absolutely do not stun into Entrench. If you can watch for their defensives and prevent them from rolling your Force Leech and Demolish, you can win, despite it being very difficult.


Operatives are, well, operatives. Kite them as much as you can and hope they don’t kill you. Interrupt their heals and watch for the roll if they are Concealment. Although sin is the hardest counter to sorcs, operatives are also very difficult to kill. It’s just easier for a sin to kill you than an operative. So yeah, kite the operative, interrupt the heals, and reapply dots when they are cleansed. Duel an operative like you would duel a sin, but more offensively. In this case, the best defense is the a strong offense. Still make sure that you heal and kite away from your Phase Walk.


Okay, so sorcs are mercenary chew toys. What you want to do is take Haunted Dreams. When they pop their Kolto Overload or after you bubble, you want to CC them. After they cast Blazing Bolts, you will want to stun them for the damage reduction if you are taking Torturous Tactics and if you are taking Suppression, use Cloud Mind after that Blazing Bolts. Typically, a merc will use Heatseeker Missile and Rail Shot not long after the Blazing Bolts and you want to mitigate that damage as much as you can. You have to be very offensive when you are fighting a merc, especially if the merc is Arsenal. They have much better resource management than a Madness sorc so you can’t afford to offheal as much. This is not saying that you should be facetanking the merc. That is a death sentence. Always keep Resurgence and Static Barrier up and make sure that you don’t CC while you have dots up. Try not to do damage when Energy Shield or Responsive Safeguards are up unless you want the merc to get a heal to full. It’s going to be hard to do, but you have to focus entirely on kiting while Energy Shield is up. Now, I know I didn’t cover IO. IO is more difficult to predict. The burst that IO has is very erratic and many IO mercs do not use the same rotation which makes me firmly believe that IO is harder to counter as a sorc. I am going to base my strategy for countering IO on my IO rotation and opener. So my opener as IO is Power Surge (with the two stacks) > Serrated Shot > Incendiary Missile > Thermal Detonator > Fusion Missile > Thermal Sensors Override > Mag Shot > Power Shot > Mag Shot > Unload. This rotation maximizes the burst you get as IO. An IO merc’s most powerful burst attacks are Thermal Detonator and Mag Shot, so the main burst window will start when the first Mag Shot hits due to the new passive at level 68 causing the Thermal Detonator to explode when the target takes damage from either Mag Shot or Power Shot. If you take Torturous Tactics, I would recommend stunning right after the Incendiary Missile goes off. If you take Suppression, use Cloud Mind after the Thermal Detonator is placed on you. You will have to be fast so that the merc doesn’t get the Mag Shot or Power Shot off causing the Thermal Detonator to explode before you activate Cloud Mind.


Kite them and make sure you mitigate the burst. If the PT was not thinking and didn’t use Hydraulics in the beginning, knock him/her back. If you take Suppression, pop it in the beginning right when the burst is about to start. You MUST mitigate the burst or else you are going to get destroyed. Just keep them away. That’s the most important thing.


If you don’t know how to counter yourself, don’t expect to counter anything else. Kite the sorc and interrupt Force Leech or Force Lightning depending on the situation. If the sorc is lightning, you always want to interrupt Thundering Blast when it comes up and you can interrupt it. Typically they will use Polarity Shift with the first Thundering Blast, so knock them back. It’s the same case with Force Leech. Knock them back if you have to interrupt and they use Polarity Shift. Use your interrupt on Force Lightning, as it procs everything and is the most used ability in a Madness Sorcerer’s rotation. If you take Torturous Tactics, use Electrocute to “interrupt” the Force Leech. It will reduce the amount of damage that Force Leech does and will be very helpful. When you’re dueling a sorc, be offensive. With Madness, you will run out of force quickly if you offheal a lot. It’s okay to do that with Lightning, but you can’t do that with Madness. Only offheal when necessary. I typically don’t like to take Force Mobility against sorcs because there is really no point to it. You can kite a sorc just fine without it. If you’re feeling lazy, go ahead and take it. I just don’t find it optimal, despite not taking Force Mobility requiring more work.

Ranked Strategies


When there are no healers, you want to focus a lot on offhealing and staying alive. You will more than likely be focused first. Your job is to stay alive and try to put out as much damage as you can while the rest of your team is killing the primary target. If you don’t end up being the first person focused, you want to focus mostly on offhealing and keeping your team alive while putting out damage. Dots should be up on all targets at all times. Recently, I was in a match against three Mercenaries and a Carnage Marauder. That is three Electro Nets along with the hindering effect from Gore. If you are in this situation, do not break the hinder effect from Gore, and try not to break the first net. Heal yourself through the first net and try to kite and keep the other team away while trying not to move more than you have to.

One Tank and Three DPS

Your job is mostly the same as when there are no healers. You kite, stay alive, and offheal. However, you can put out more damage in the match because the tank is there to mitigate damage.

Healer With or Without Tank

When you have a healer in your match, you can focus a lot more on damage. Obviously you should still offheal a bit. If you see someone about to die, pop a Resurgence and Extricate that person. Once you Extricate, cast Dark Heal as many times as you see fit. Try not to use it too many times though, for it will drain your force.


Thank Yous

I’d like to thank Baoton for getting me into Sorcerer DPS a while back, although he played Lightning and not Madness.

I’d also like to thank my guilds Imperial High Council, Asylum, Hackers of the Round Table, Wither, Elegant Edge, and Imperial Strike Force for getting me where I am.

Thank you to Saeari, Ketara, and Maoul for constantly dueling me and helping me learn how to counter other classes, especially sins.

Thank you to Safar for teaching me Madness in the beginning and getting me started on Madness.

And lastly, I’d like to thank Evalithia for helping me build on my knowledge of Madness, for helping me write this guide, and for being the number 1 hug sorc in the game. *hugs*

About Me

I am a Sorcerer main originally from Jung Ma. I initially started playing SWTOR back in beta almost six years ago now. I quit for about four years until I came back in the middle of 2015. When I started playing Sorcerer, I played Corruption, but now I main Madness and Lightning.

I did ranked in season 7 when I was on Jung Ma. I was ranked the 9th sorc and the 23rd overall player in the world for a long while (about a month) until ranked died on Jung Ma. Once ranked died on Jung Ma, I didn’t do ranked until I went to Shadowlands, where I played ranked on my operative and sniper until I transferred my sorc. I ended the season with tier 1 on my sorc. I also was tier 1 in season 4 under a name I won’t disclose. This season, I haven’t done much ranked due to the toxicity, although I have done some on my sniper. I may be getting back into ranked once I move my sorc back over to Harbinger.

You can find me on Begeren Colony under the names Emree, PHGJOYBHTYBFGOV (0236 on the first i), Ayumà (0224 on the à), Illenwè (138 on the e), and Zikà (0224 on the à), Red Eclipse under the name Emìri (0236 on the first i), Harbinger under the name Emìri (0236 on the first i), and on Ebon Hawk under the name Citrinè (138 on the e). If you would like clarification, tips on anything, or would like to duel, please feel free to message me, mail me, or hug me.

By Dulfy

MMO guide writer and blogger. Currently playing and covering SWTOR, GW2, and TSW.

108 replies on “SWTOR 5.0 Madness Sorcerer PvP Guide by Emiri”

Thank you for writing this. I’ll be using the information in this guide for sure since I just returned to the game after not playing for several years.

You forgot to mention the most important part about sins; the part where you need to pucker your asshole and get ready to take it like a man before the sin thrashes you and there isn’t fuck all you can do about it


Great guide, very comprehensive. I especially like the sections about how to counter other classes. IMO knowing the counters is what will either make or break you in PvP.

“Madness is currently the best, yet most difficult, Sorcerer DPS spec in SWTOR.” I believe this is sarcasm, because sorc DPSs are the worst spec to pvp atm..

You’re misreading this. Sorc dps is definitely difficult to play in PvP and its viability is questionable, however, what I am saying is that of the DPS specs for sorc (between lightning and madness), madness is the superior spec.

I disagree, lightning has more burts, same/better AoE damage/burst – the only thing madness does better, is silly tiny self heals, it’s not even as mobile as lightning, leaving lightning much better suited to kite. – Lightning has, and will always be the superior spec, madness only does fluff damage.

Youre missing one thing – lightning is also only fluff damage. The burst window is pretty short. Madness has superior single target and sustained damage. Lightning does have more mobility, but that’s it. According to the parse, lightning is the lowest parsing spec in the game, pointing to superior single target damage on madness’ part. Chain Lightning is fluff damage and doesn’t hit for much, and if I remember correctly (I haven’t read the skill tree in a while, I’m going to reread it a few times before I write the lightning guide), lightning flash and lightning bolt also have a chance to affect targets nearby. The only good single target damage you get from lightning is really just Lightning Flash and the autocrit Thundering Blast. I will admit, within one full rotation from a good lightning sorc against an idiot who doesn’t pop any dcds or try to negate the burst, the lightning sorc will take away 50% or more of the targets health. If you negate that burst, lightning is screwed. Lightning is just too predictable, and with the nerf, it is really weak. When I test my damage on a target as lightning and madness and compare it, I typically almost get the target down to 0% within one rotation as madness, while it takes slightly longer on lightning. Lightning is just an inferior spec in every way. Everything lightning has, minus the burst, madness can outdo. Death field > leech > force lightning almost outdoes thundering blast autocrit > chain lightning > lightning flash. There is only about a 7k damage difference in favour of lightning. My point is that madness has stronger sustained damage while also having decent burst. Along with the sustained damage, you get leeches. I used to main lightning, but Madness is just a superior spec for dueling and for warzones. I do feel lightning is better against operatives and possibly assassins, however.

If you check parsley, you will see that in reality, lightning has more single target substained aswell theocrated numbers ain’t everything, the burst window of lightning, while short, repeats every 8-10 seconds. and due to be so common results in a lot of burst damage, it’s not just fluff, while chainlightnin hits multiple people, and may end up fluffing numbers, it does hit quite hard every 5 seconds on everyone near your main target

chain lightning is a 8-12k hit every 5 seconds, and in a 4 vs 4, with enough silly people, can result in a lot more preasure on a healer than a madness dot spread.

I main lightning for both PvE and PvP, and have tried madness, – and I have always had beter results with lightning, – the only cases I find myself do a lot more damage, with madness, is vs a full melee enemy team, with 1-2 healers backing them up, where I can DoT spread.

Maybe you’re just not that good at madness xD I’ve almost always outplayed some of the best lightning sorcs I’ve seen in madness.

Pherhabs, – I don’t want to diss your guide, as it’s well written and I am sure will help people – I just do not think madness is the superior spec, in my mind lightning has always been the better spec, I run my lightning sorc in HM ops and I tried it in ranked (ending up vs 4 mercs 3 times in a row, is currently a very de-motivating factor) but in regs still find lightning the better spec,

Bringing lightning into hard mode and nightmare mode ops is also very respectable. I used to do that until 5.0, when I compared my lightning and madness parses. I found my lightning parse (6.6k in 230s) to be rather depressing. My parse in madness was 7.1k. Maybe I should try to parse lightning again.

Nowadays, I just mostly play my virulence sniper in operations. I find that to be more enjoyable for PvE. Higher parse (7.7k in 230s) along with stronger defensives and more passive mitigation. I just don’t find sorc to be very good or enjoyable for pve, unless you’re healing.

U’re wrong. U’re right about the pressure on a healer with aoe burst, BUT ! in 5.0 things have changed far from 4.0
In 4.0 I was doing what u say here, destroy heal/tank by aoe, easy,
In 5.0 impossible. 😀 I quit lightning. Turned back to madness.

The chain lightning bug does make a huge difference – that I won’t deny. I still believe that madness is better though. I stated all the facts, and I have nothing more to say. There are many top players who agree that madness is better. I will go through the numbers of my basic rotation for both specs and add up how much damage they do when going through them in their entirety and tell you how much damage they both do without any crits.

Oh my oh my where to start….. mkay, so;

First off, yes Lightning has more burst. That ‘burst’ is also hands down the worst burst in the game. Thundering Blast is an autocrit that hits for 15k-ish. Now, people have a minimum of 115k HP these days. So even if your following Chain Lighting crits as well you’re only going to see a maximum of 25-30k total damage in your burst window. 30k damage. That’s even under the assumption that the other person is a moron and stands there doing nothing about the extremely obvious and wholly telegraphed Lightning burst.

Better AoE damage than Madness? No. Better AoE BURST? Yes. Lighting is the only AoE burst spec in the game, but again, that AoE burst is from Chain Lightning and nothing more. As a burst spec itself Lightning is, frankly, useless. The only time Lightning is actually useful as a burst spec is when paired with a high single target burst spec such as Advanced Prototype or Deception; a situation where its AoE burst can compliment the single target burst of its partner.

Overall AoE damage, however, Madness blows Lightning away. You can pull equal numbers in Lightning if people constantly stack up for Chain Lightnings, but aside from those rare situations Madness will outperform. It’s a DoT spread spec; its entire purpose is AoE pressure. Now I will say that Madness currently is subpar, but that’s completely beside the point of this discussion. As a whole Madness is a vastly superior spec in both overall performance and, specifically, AoE damage output.

All that said, Lightning IS more mobile and can offheal more effectively. The former because Force Mobility allows Lightning to cast its primary ability, Thundering Blast, while moving. Meanwhile Madness can only cast Force Leach while mobile and is forced to stand still while casting Force Lightning, something that is required for the spec to function. Off healing, yes Lightning does better. That is because Lightning has procs in its tree that greatly buff its Force regeneration rate; to the point that if played properly Lighting will never drop below 90% Force until you start off healing.

So overall Madness is simply a superior spec, even if I personally find it mind numbingly boring. Its damage is wholly better than Lightning, which has been a joke of a spec since 4.0 launched and was only marginally better before then.

Trust me – I do wish lightning is better. It was my first sorc dps spec in this game and I’m slightly more comfortable in it. The problem is that it really isn’t. If they buff lightning and make it better than madness, I would probably go back to lightning.

I agree. Real talk, all day long, a madness sorc will shut a lightning one down 1 vs 1 in pvp, you may have overall higher damage numbers in a group (8 v s 8) than madness, but you’re going to get destroyed by the majority of the other classes if you get singled out or dogpiled.

Also; go play Lightning against a halfway competent Deception Assassin and come back to me with your results. I’ll wait 🙂

Both specs do the same dps,Lightning is a little bit ahead bit its less than 50 dps, tho Lightning is very easy to shot down, all you have to do is interrupt TB or run behind them so it gets canceled, Madness is harder to shot down, while Lightning has “okish” burst, can do like a 40% hp burst but its sustained is very bad, on AoE potential Madness goes ahead by a tiny bit but nothing substantial, Lightning could do better if you get good crits

Also, although sorc isn’t very good at the present moment, I believe that pyrotech pt is still in a worse spot due to weak defensives and below average damage output. Pyrotech may parse higher than any sorc spec, but a parse is not reminiscent of a class’ capability in PvP.

“although sorc isn’t very good at the present moment, I believe that pyrotech pt is still in a worse spot due to weak defensives and below average damage output”
I totally agree with you

I havent played PT yet. I’m planning on leveling one sometime soon lol. Typically, when people piss me off these days, I switch off to either my Operative or Sniper. Typically my Sniper because I’m better at that and can typically beat Operatives on my Sniper unless they’re Saya/Saeari (who is writing the Concealment Operative guide! :D).

Welp, yeah I know all those people. I thought your name sounded familiar. I didn’t really make myself known on that server until a little after NS left Jung.

I remember dubblebubble lol. She was in my guild on Jung for a while. But yeah, it’s a shame that everyone started win trading. It’s really frustrating. Now you’ve got noobs like kana’ba getting top 96 titles.

Kana’ba is some tank guardian on ebon in Alderaan Acklays. Not very good. Has a weak guard swap and he’s just not good at his class. I believe he’s currently top guard/jugg in the game and he got a top 96 last season too. He’s a win trader and he’s been caught doing it.

Very nice guide. Compliment to the dueling section. I just want to know one thing when you play ranked:
How do you avoid getting gang-banged and globalized.

Example 1:
You place phase walk -> rejoin group bubbles -> resurgence and start fight -> you against double sin with spike -> then comes hard stun -> and you about to barrier because at this point you at 20% and burst is insane! And wait of cause there is a mercenary and use electro net and your barrier cannot work now. Most times I simply break and barrier. But due to ability delay/lag or whatever I break it and I just die after that.

Example 2:
Preset everything -> Mara leaps and uses pacify/obs and you cannnot damage it stun/KB whatever -> while sin comes out and spikes you -> you want to use KB at this point as pacify is about to where off and suddenly sin uses shroud avoids Kb’s mara jumps back and hard stun and this is the part where you barrier/pw but cannot because of net your phase walk resets and that leaves plan A: defensive wasted. Or if you manage to somehow actually use phase walk but melee get predation and chase after you. Just need to keep moving or what?

Ranked seems literally impossible atm with sorc. I mained sorc since 3.0 but idk this patch made it a lot more harder for sorcs especially since mercs are flooding queues.

I completely agree. Sorc is very difficult in ranked now and is almost not viable at all to the point – it hurts me to say this, in all honesty – where you bring team down. I really hate saying this, but your best option is to just kite and run as much as you can and try to slow people down while popping resurgence, unnatural pres, and static barrier on cooldown. Dot spread, use your dots and slows, and just hope to God that your team kills someone before you die or have to use bubble. One thing I will give Dacri credit for is how well he kites in ranked. I learned a few things from watching that and he pretty much does exactly what I just described. You really just need to stay away and keep people off you and overload them back.

I agree I went Sniper too and Merc and it wasn’t even fun pounding people into the dirt with 5 hotbar skills….No matter how terrible they treat Sorcs I always fall back to it. I like being the underdog and playing a class where you actually need to know what you’re doing.

Agreed. I do enjoy sniper a lot. Merc I could never enjoy. I play all three specs and they’re just boring. Even IO is boring and still was back in 4.0 despite supposedly being the worst and “most complicated” spec in the game next to pyro.

They say it’s “complicated” but it’s similar to Sorc imo; very situational and you have to have a good understanding of how to compile your damage. Anything in SWTOR that doesn’t grant you burst or nuke damage right off the bat is considered “complicated” lol

I also have to say that I don’t do ranked much anymore. I got too stressed out after last season. I’ll probably get back into it next season. I just need a break, which has happened to me in the past, as in evident in the fact that I played in season 4 and season 7. Obviously, before I went into writing this guide, I did a few ranked matches, but I definitely don’t do ranked as often as I used to.

yep R.I.P. sorc in ranked. But I have seen some really good sorcs that kite really well and survive long enough to actually be useful to team. These sorcs are not focused because they kite too well and take too long to kill. So they mainly offheal and thats a problem. Kudos to these sorcs!

Yeah, I remember the first time I fought Dacri. I went up against him in a dueling tournament when I first started playing sorc dps. I got utterly annihilated. I haven’t gotten to duel him since, unfortunately. I would like to, as that was a little under a year ago now.

I hear he sold his account recently, but that’s just a rumor. I know for a fact that he is back. I saw him a couple days ago on harb and watched his stream out of curiosity.

Oh ok that’s good. The ranked queue was popping but not enough people was in the solo queue to really get it started. Seems like all the win-trading has died down a bit so I might take a crack at the leaderboards again…it’s been so long

Hey, Wise guide I would say, but too advanced for regular madness sorcs, I’m madness fan, It’s true everything u said about kiting :D, Good points directed about counter the classes.
Dunno If it helps, but my skill point is pretty childish, and very useful from what I tested :
Empty body+ Sith defiance; Suppresion + Dark resilience; Emersion + Shapeless spirit or Surging speed ( depend on ranked/ unranked) ; Unnatural vigor + Corrupted barrier.

This skill tree makes me feel madness more resistant, and with a burst of speed from surging speed, u can do kite a little bit also, using CT 2 seconds root etc.
The essence of madness sorc is place dots, and run like a bitch. But with some resistant, u can do some sustained burst dps before starting to kite.
Also If u getting globalled by many around u, like vengeance juggs, backlash will be kinda unuseful, and taking shapeless spirit helps taking off so much dps while stunned like a cow.
I suppose madness way in this game works different, but I see madness has some potential in this childish skill tree utility.

As for stats, it may seem weird, really, but I use 110% accuracy, THOUGH I KNOW IT’S NOT RECOMMENDED, But I missed all my attacks while trying to dps an immortal jugg, and since then I take the recommended pve accuracy,
Crit around 40%
Alacrity 13% because I use electrocute and whirlwind on cd even though I don’t have Haunted dreams, kiss the polarity shift. Always using recklessness for a big fat stack of unnatural preservation with dark resilience (+30%) and Vigor, In middle of battle.
I admit my type of kiting has an bad end, limited, but that’s due to many nets I got tired of, no chance against nets with PW or f barrier, rather with suppresion/Vigor/Shapeless.

Cheers, Artthy.

Hm. That’s interesting. I’m going to try that build later today. Those utilities are actually pretty good as well. I should have remembered to put that in this guide. I just don’t take that combination often enough. I would only recommend it if you’re experienced, which is the vibe I get from you after reading what you said. I would like to dispute the idea of taking surging speed, however. I just don’t find that utility useful enough to take. I could see how it’s a useful utility, with the increased force speed duration, decreased cd, and the polarity shift movement speed buff, but I think it would be best to take with force mobility. The problem with taking that in madness is that you have to sit and cast a lot more than in lightning, so you’re not getting as much out of it as you can. But yeah, I’m going to try the 110% accuracy (I almost typed alacrity – imagine 110% alacrity XD) build and see how well that works. I was debating going up to 105% accuracy with 242s, but I just feel like accuracy isn’t useful enough on sorc. I don’t feel the mitigation that tanks have that much when I fight them, unless it’s a sin tank. Don’t get me started on sin tanks lol. I do find this build interesting, and obviously, it’s viable for pve. Thanks for the idea, and I’m glad you like the guide!

Nah, surging speed is for unraked, where u need constant F barrier, constant speed, and more often speed along with a slight phase walk, like odessen or buttball.

For example if u get fucked by a pull into fire, use f barrier, If u have time use f speed with 15 sec and emersion, after pull, ure gonna be targeted, so u have low cooldown on f speed, surging speed is very viable in unranked, not good in ranked.

Ye, I trust pvp opinion, I never used accuracy until trying to dps useless that tank, how can he defend force attacks? answer is simple: bioware tries to balance pve and pvp char, so u don’t need to constant change gear for pvp/ pve.
I got 110% accuracy, I know I can clip wrath 4 stacks without miss and can do pve too, which is the fastest way to get 242 gear, by doing hm ops. If I get interrupted or slowed it’s better, because I know I’m targeted, and switch to kite mode.

My personal advice, is to always, before u enter battle, ranked, unranked, odessen, etc, always have a phase walk. Your actual presence should not exist. Always ready to pop into safezone, before battle. It’s a pain to think phase walk place sometimes, imo. Best is place on top mountain hahaha.

Btw, for rotation, man, I discovered rotation very hard, with much testing,
On pvp rotation, never use lightning strike since is unuseful, just some burst dps, bah… I rather use f lightning to slow my target. And if u parse on dummy, rotation with FL(4 stacks)> LS is just a bit dps difference, which leaves to one conclusion > FL without cd is actual madness, cos u do almost same damage and less force cost.

I also tend to disagree force leech. I debated with a friend wither leech is useful or not. Leech is easy to interrupt, which I hope it gets deleted from game, It destroys all my “leech” rotation. So my only logical option, is to use leech if only I need healing, and of course, available to use on a single target dps pump (like healer) ! Leech is unuseful if u get it interrupted, so here is my opinion, where periodics should save your interrupted dps. Although, I must admit, to dueling, leech with Force mobility has a great advantage ! helps u piss some internal damage.

I realize some people has different conception, and are much more skilled than me, but I run for more survival, f mobility is useless if u get a hard immobilize :(…

If u look closely to madness skill tree, all the tree is dps rain compared to wise boost of lightning. That skill tree is reason, why madness has great advantage in pvp, Put periodics and run, expecially with df for spread.

I even lost a friend (swilja, a good sin) cos I wanted to queue as sorc madness in ranked. He spit on me cos he lost rating because of me. I’m low class player, but due to my bad kite I have more wins than losses with madness.


Yeah it’s painful lol. Be glad they didn’t scale the damage properly. If they scaled the damage properly from 1.0, they should be hitting around 50k with their mauls.

Hm. It’s not likely I’ll be on, although I am intrigued by the fact that the URC is taking place on Harb this time around. I’ve been kinda out of the loop for the last couple months so I actually had no idea. If I do show up, it will be with Ketara and a few other friends. It’s still highly unlikely. I’ll PM you if I decide to log in. If I do, keep in mind I haven’t played for a while so I’m kinda rusty.

I checked with my people immediately after I saw your comment. It is indeed on harb. It decides who from each advanced class (one person per advanced class) will represent NA in URC on Red Eclipse. I was debating getting back into the game specifically to do it, but I just can’t duel on Red Eclipse. 200 ms is too much to handle for dueling – even on a sorc – if you catch my drift. I pity the operative representative. Poor guy will be rolling too late on Red Eclipse. Every story I’ve heard of people from NA going to Red Eclipse for URC has been a story of lagging really badly, resulting in, ya know, losing. And these aren’t bads just QQing about lag as an excuse – these are some of the best players in NA. I have a character on Red Eclipse that I mess around with occasionally and I do pretty well, but I just can’t duel very well because of lag. Fortunately, I’m a sorc and I can afford my abilities getting off a little late, but it still is detrimental against good players. If you decide to participate, just keep in mind that you’re going to be lagging on Red Eclipse if you get there. I respect the people who are willing to take the risk of going to Red Eclipse and dueling with the lag. Takes a lot of courage. I honestly am afraid of taking that risk and dueling against good players while making the many mistakes that come with lag. So if you’re going into this URC representative tourney with the intent of going to Red Eclipse, you have my respect.

Hey, the main tourny ended up being on a server where both NA and EU would have little lag issues, you should have signed up, would have been interesting to see if you beat Dacri. (I was the EU sorc rep). Just an fyi this guide is awful xd

God don’t remind me. This guide is fucking shit. But you gotta keep in mind that this was written at the beginning of 5.0, so not much was really known. Most of those rotations in here were purely experimental, and I stopped using a lot of them not too long after publication. Either way, shit game. I quit about 9-10 months ago

Your setup seems fine, but aren’t you getting diminishing returns with your crit that high? Lightning is perfectly fine in regs, but I wouldn’t recommend it in ranked. I was typically pulling 4.5k-5.5k in lightning in regs. My highest dps was 6.6k in lightning. This was in 230s. Now if I compare that to madness, I was pulling 4.5k-6k on average. My highest dps was 8.4k in an arena, and 7.7k in 8v8. Don’t get me wrong, I adore lightning. It was my first sorc dps spec. It’s just flat out not as good as madness. The only things it has on madness are firstly, more kiting/mobility, and second, better force management and therefore more offheals. Due to the superior force management, you can afford to play more defensively, while with madness you have to play more offensively. Lightning just isnt as rewarding because the damage is flat out weaker. With madness, you can put your dots out, spread them, and still offheal while putting out significant pressure. If you offheal with lightning, you’re practically stopping all your dps, except for your affliction. Madness has more survivability and more utility because of this, and their leeches. My mentor and I had done regs with each other a few times in 5.0. We had no healer, so we spent a lot of time offhealing. He was a lightning sorc, and I was playing madness. I had slightly more heals and significantly more damage. The reason why is that I have leeches and I have dots on everyone in the vicinity, while the majority of your damage is from chain lightning because of the aoe damage. Now, for single target damage. I know parses don’t apply very well in pvp, but madness parses about 1k higher than lightning last I checked. I’ve tested both specs in 1v1s, with a target being passive, and a target who is actually dueling me. I found that the sustained damage of madness tends to kill targets faster than the burst damage of lightning. In ranked, particularly matches with healers, you want to be able to kill your opponents as fast as you can. Madness has superior sustained pressure damage, and also has equal, if not better, single target damage than lightning. If there is a need, I can offheal while still applying pressure due to the passivity of dots and only needing to reapply them every 18 seconds. I tried lightning in ranked on an alt, and although I won the match, it took a lot more work. Lightning just isn’t viable in ranked anymore. Honestly, sorc dps isn’t really viable in ranked anymore. We had it coming, after being OP from 2.7-4.0. I did decently in ranked at first, but then I lost a couple matches and was like “No, I’m not getting my rating.” I was honestly scared to see what I would get with 3 wins and 2 losses. But that’s what happens when every other season you did ranked you got 9 wins and 1 loss or 10 wins to begin with. I also heard about a good friend of mine who was an amazing madness sorc and taught me some stuff getting absolutely obliterated in granked. And this guy was really good. He was the best madness sorc I had ever seen. Better than Dacri imo. We went something like 55-45, with me having the very slight advantage. In conclusion, madness has always been better than lightning. It has slight advantages in damage and utility. If you want to play lightning, more power to you. It’s a really fun spec, but I would highly advise against bringing it into ranked. But you probably just wrote this comment to show me your setup. Your setup is really good, but I would lower the crit to 45% and put those points into alacrity.

Emiri, can you please explain will Sith Sorcerer win in aduel against Jedi Guadian, Jedi Sentinel, Jedi Shadow and Jedi Sage?
And btw, who wins Jedi Guardian vs. Jedi Sentinel, Jedi Sentinel or Guardian vs. Jedi Sage, Jedi Sage vs. Jedi Shadow, Jedi Shadow vs, Jedi Sentinel, Jedi Shadow vs. Jedi Guardian-who wins in these duels, big thanks in advance Emiri!!!!!

Lol that’s a lot you’re asking. K so, shadow v guardian is dependent on the spec. Let’s say you’re infil v any guardian DPS spec. You should be winning. However, against a tank, the tank would have to be significantly worse than you to win. Note the video of atox dueling reborn. Reborn wins despite atox sap healing. This is because there is such a huge class disadvantage for sins against skanks. Serenity will struggle against any guardian spec, but I personally don’t lose very often to juggs on my sin as any spec unless they’re skanks. In fact, I don’t think I’ve lost to any jugg dps except for one who escapes me. And that was two duels out of 5 that I had lost. As for sentinel v shadow, it’s a rather easy win unless the sentinel is concentration. If you don’t time your dcds correctly and they unload all their burst on you, you’re going to be obliterated. It’s somewhat similar to dueling carnage, but carnage is mostly white damage so all you need to do is have deflection up in the beginning. So shadow v sentinel tends to favour the shadow. Shadow v sage is generally a roflstomp for the shadow. You’re going to crush the sage most likely because sage is hard countered by shadow. Pop shroud properly and take phasing phantasm (I don’t know the utility name for shadow) and use speed and stride properly and you’re going to crush the sage. However, I tend not to lose to shadows/sins (except for a select couple) on my sorc. Why? Because most people are bad at this game these days. But an equally skilled shadow will crush you. Sentinel and guardian v sage is a very difficult duel as well. Basically dueling anything as a sage is difficult now. Sage was a glass cannon pre nerf, and now it’s nothing but glass. Sage single target damage is some of the worst in the game. In fact, lightning without the chain lightning bug has lower single target than pyrotech. If you want to beat a guardian or a sentinel you have to kite really well and abuse your slows, take electric bindings, and root as you see fit. And don’t forget to go straight into focused defense, because you are always going to have dots up. Guardian v sentinel is in the favour of the sentinel now, although it used to favour the guardian. The focused defense nerf and sentinel’s defensive buff while having higher damage output puts it in the favour of the sentinel. Sage v sage is obviously just a skill contest and a battle of playstyles and how you counter them. I play very aggressively (most of the time) and know how to counter almost everything a sorc can do, due to playing the class on and off since beta. In the last year or so, I’ve only lost one duel series sorc v sorc. And it is likely that I won’t ever be dueling as a sorc again, much less sorc v sorc, because I don’t enjoy the class anymore and dueling sorcs takes too long. It got too easy for me and it’s just not worth my time. I’m maining assassin now because it’s more fun IMO. I’ll probably come back to the class with 6.0, if there is a 6.0. Did I answer all your questions? If there’s anything else you’d like to know or would like me to explain – anything at all relating to the game – go ahead and let me know/ask. I find it fun to talk about this stuff.

Hey, do you have an update on your stats? I’d also like to know if this spec still makes sense for ranked. Thanks 🙂

No, I quit several months ago. I wouldn’t recommend taking sorc into PvE either way. It’s not a very high parser, but if you’re good enough you’ll do fine. I played decep/hatred sin in PvE. Cleared the majority of ops (hm/nim) on that class. Some of it was on lightning/heal sorc, though. Madness isn’t as appealing to me in PvE, in all honesty.

I know this article was written a bit back but sorc dps is laughable. I have been out for a year because of it. Got back in to find out nothing has changed. Honestly I thought Mercs would be flying by now. Good article but sorcs and their ‘utility’ (for dps) is laughable. SWTOR has neutered the sorc. You think Bioware would attempt to regain balance in pvp…
Emiri remember when sorcs could just melt people in pvp? That was awesome but balance was needed and now Bioware has totally f!@#%$ that up. pew, pew, pew, Merica.

i wrote this on my own guide and it was detected as spam: Honestly, take this guide with a grain of salt. This was written a year and a half ago – at the beginning of 5.0. I’m not as pleased with it as I was at publication. Honestly if you’re looking for learn madness sorc, ask for Hyruza on the Star Forge. I would suggest that you DM me here, but I havent exactly played sorc for about a year, and I quit the game about 9-10 months ago. Just like, keep in mind that a lot of the stuff on this guide was purely theoretical because this was written not too long after 5.0 launch. The only rotations I really stuck with were the first and third ones. Either way, yeah, that’s all I wanted to say. Be careful, and honestly, always double check what you see on a guide with an actual human resource. Even better, if you can reach out to the guide writer him/herself, 100% do that. If they’re not assholes, I’m sure they’ll answer any questions or explain what was written.

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