The Elder Scrolls Online has grown so much since its initial release in April 2014 that it is almost an entirely new game. Even so, it shares many traits with other massively multiplayer role-playing games out there such as World of Warcraft and Final Fantasy XIV, and that is a focus on stats and gear.
While ESO has a different system than WoW and many role-playing games – armor is less specialized in ESO and allows for a lot of mixing and matching – there are still, nonetheless, some sets that are better for some purposes than others.
Of course, everyone will have their own opinions as to what is the best and every update could possibly change this list. That said, we are going to outline the best armor in The Elder Scrolls Online for specific purposes as it stands right now.
We’ll also tell you a little bit about how you can obtain the armor and make use of it in your game. We’ll focus on the best builds for magicka and stamina since those are the foundations of either a DPS character or a tank/melee build.
Magicka is the amount of magic you can use which means that armor that boosts that trait makes you a more potent DPS dealer on the field. There are other benefits on the armor sets listed here, naturally, but we’re going to focus on the most optimal builds for magicka or stamina.
1. Law of Julianos
One of the best magicka armor sets out there right now is the Law of Julianos set. The best part about this set, aside from it being great for DPS dealing for caster classes, is that it is craftable. Located in Wrothgar in the Boreal Forge, the set has four bonuses that are particularly good for necromancers. Specifically, the Law of Julianos set is great for Arcanist builds for player-versus-environment applications and even allows for some light tanking.
Rated level 50, champion 160, the following are the bonuses associated with the set: two pieces Add 833 Spell Crit, three add 1096 to base max Magicka, four add 833 Spell Crit, and five pieces gives 299 Spell Damage.
2. Mother’s Sorrow
To get the Mother’s Sorrow you need to head to Deshaan where Delve bosses can possibly reward you with a foot or waist piece of armor as a drop reward. There’s also a chance that they could drop another piece while Overland group bosses give you a 100% chain of obtaining a legs, weapon, chest, or head piece depending on the zone where you encounter the group boss. Public dungeon bosses can drop a hand or weapon while defeating an Anchor could give you a ring or amulet set piece depending on the zone where you find the Dark Anchor. Also, there’s always a chance you could receive a piece through a random drop especially depending on the bonuses you have in the treasure hunting stat.
Benefits of the full set include adding 1096 max Magicka to your base with two items, adds 833 Spell Crit with three items, adds 833 Spell Crit with four items, and adds a whopping 1924 Spell Crit with five. It is recommended for tank build necromancers that are going to use it for PvE. There are some unique pieces to this set that give it more flexibility than most light armor caster sets.
3. Spell Strategist
Another arcanist build, you can find this in Cyrodiil in the battlegrounds. The Spell Strategist set benefits includes adding 1096 max Magicka with two items, three items add 129 Spell Damage, four adds 129 Spell Damage, and five makes such that when you use a Light Attack you mark the target for a total of five seconds which gives you an extra 500 spell damage against the targeted enemy. This can refresh every four seconds, making it quite a potent benefit to completing the set.
4. Burning Spellweave Set
Probably one of the most versatile and universally applicable sets on this list for Magicka armor sets, the Burning Spellweave set gives you a range of bonuses and is especially potent for pyromancers. You can find it in the City of Ash where dungeon and mini bosses will drop a set piece every single time you face them. Normal mode will give you blue quality while Veteran mode will give you purple quality items. One thing to note is that the items in this set are bound to the player’s account upon pickup.
Bonuses include two items adding 1096 max base Magicka, three items give you plus 129 Spell Damage, four gives you another 833 to Spell Crti, and five items gives you a fifteen percent chance or afflicting the burning status effect on a target if a Flame Damage ability is used. Your spell damage will increase by 525 for 8 seconds with a 12 second interval for renewal.
5. Mantle of Siroria
Found in Cloudrest, the Mantle of Siroria has some awesome benefits for casters and comes in “perfect” and “imperfect” variants. You can obtain them from the mini-trials in Cloudrest.
The benefits include adding 129 Spell Damage for two pieces, Minor Slayer perk and a 5% bump in damage dealt to Dungeon, Trial, and Arena enemies with three items, 1096 max Magicka with four, and direct damage dealing with ring of fire encircling your character for 10 seconds with an effect renewal interval of ten seconds. Standing inside of the fire circle cast gives your character a Siroria’s Boon which can stack up to five times with each stack upping total Spell Damage by 30 with up to 20 stacks max.:
6. Hunding’s Rage
You can find and craft Hunding’s Rage in Reaper’s March at Broken Arch, or in Bangkorai at Wether’s Cleft, and finally in The Rift at Trollslayer’s Gully with the build being recommended for players looking for stamina and to deal DPS. It can be crafted by players and even traded.
As far as the benefits of Hunding’s Rage, the following bonuses are attributed to paired, triple, quad, and five piece armor sets: 2 gives you 833 Weapon Crit, three 1096 to mas Stamina, four gives an additional 833 Weapon Crit, and five gives you an additional 299 Weapon Damage.
7. Berserking Warrior (Also Known As Advancing Yokeada)
A heavy armor set perfect for PvE DPS, the Berserking Warrior, which is also called Advancing Yokeada, can be dropped by mobs and bosses in Hel-Ra Citadel with difficulty level determining the quality of the drop. That is, Normal mobs and bosses drop blue-level gear, Veteran level drop purple-level gear, and the last boss in Hel-Ra Citadel on Veteran Hard mode will drop gold-quality jewelry.
The set has weapons of every type in the game and is bound to the player’s account upon pickup. Set bonuses include 833 Weapon Crit with a pair, 129 Weapon Damage lift with a trio, 833 Weapon Crit with four, and a set of five allows you to increase your Critical Strike number by 400 points for five seconds, stackable, with five total stacks allowed.
8. Arms of Relequen
This set has both a perfect and imperfect version. It is a medium armor located in the Cloudrest trial and is ideal for stamina DPS builds.
Set bonuses are substantial with two items granting 833 Weapon Crit, three items grants Minor Slayer which ups damage to Dungeon, Trial, and Arena enemies by some 5%, four adds 833 Weapon Crit, and five weapons activates the Arms of Relequen’s “harmful winds” applied to your light or heavy attacks. These winds give out 210 physical damage every second and is stackable with a maximum stack of 20.
9. Strength of the Automaton
A medium armor set found in Darkshade Caverns, Strength of the Automaton pieces are dropped by dungeon bosses and mini bosses with mini bosses giving a hand, feet, or waist piece and bosses drop a shoulder, chest, head or leg set piece. The final boss always drops a weapon or a piece of jewelry.
As with other armor sets on this list, Normal mode will give you blue-quality items while Veteran mode will give you purple-quality items. Set piece bonuses include an additional 833 Weapon Crit for two pieces, 1096 to max Stamina for three, 129 Weapon Damage for four, and 400 Weapon Damage to Physical Damage for five items from the set.
10. Vicious Serpent
Another medium armor set located in the Aetherian Archive, the Hel-Ra Citadel, and the Sanctum Ophidia, the Vicious Serpent Set has something from every weapon category and binds to the user account upon pickup.
Vicious Serpent has some pretty cool set bonuses that melee players will enjoy such as an 833 Weapon crit add with two pieces, perpetual Minor Slayer in Dungeon, Trial, and Arena which ups damage to enemies by 5% with three items, another 833 Weapon crit with a set of four, and five items gives you another 129 Weapon Damage as well as an 8% decrease in Stamina points used by abilities.
Stamina points are restored as you fell enemies (2150 to be exact) and this also grants you an 8 second Major Expedition buff which increases player movement speed by a whopping 30%.