Blackthorn Arena – Character Build Guide

Collection of effective Builds & Triggers to build the most deadly gladiators imaginable!

Guide to Character Build

All credit goes to saintzoilus!

Gladiator Builds

So as you may have noticed, your great warrior’s are … well.. not so great at the start… This means its up to YOU to shape them into effective warrior’s.

Levels are only half the battle, yes you can level, but no this doesn’t mean your going to be strong enough to hang with people your level if you don’t properly put the stats & skills of those levels to good use.

This guide is giving you some effective builds that should give you a start to figure out where to change things for yourself from there.

One last thing to remember; these builds are only as good as the “Triggers” that go with it, this means triggers are almost as important as properly building your gladiators so make sure you do both!

This is a new guide to a new game so I will be adding additional classes and builds as I figure them out, I’ve got two done already (ones a version of “kiara”) just need the time to put the guides together.

I am accepting build suggestions or adjustments to currently listed builds so send me something if you want it added or changed and I’ll check it out!

Tips Area

Gona leave tips of all kinds here

First and most important way to start your game is to find a slave with “Born Instructor” since this gives additional exp when training, this is extremely important you get early so that you can level your gladiators up without having to risk them, since two or three days of training is equal to a event.. that you’d have to heal for 2-3 days without exping anyways so it rounds itself out pretty quickly if you get on this like “day one” of playing.

Again its more important for the person to have “born instructor” than it is for their instructor level to be high, they could have level 0 instructor but if they have the “born instructor” perk you still want to buy them, it’ll be worth it cuz those 1-3 levels go extremely fast.

Why humans? Why not dwarfs like others suggest?

Humans can use heavy armor if you take into account the negative bonus by replacing those stats in gear, namely the “starlight amulet” will negate more of the negative buff aspects than an alternative amulet like “the war gods amulet” that has +3 str.. that actually doesn’t help you alot if it only reduces your weight debuff by -1… where as the starlight amulet can reverse the negative dodge factor into a positive even if your debuffed by -5 dodge the +9 from starlight makes it so your not negatively effecting your stats overall.

We’re talking about at 35str “no weight debuff” dwarf or a 35str -2 debuff human with +4 skills. +4 skill> -2 debuff in alot of situations, plus the extra damage reduction is required for endgame content. Your goal should be to negate the debuff so it doesn’t matter while utilizing the extra skills in order to better build your character.

For the above reasons I strongly advise using humans over dwarves for nearly all builds, for some reason that I can’t explain but the smaller player models do not work as well as larger player models I find, so large humans seem to have larger shields, larger block area, longer attack range, where midgets need to give the enemy a hug in order to hit them due to less range, shields are physically smaller since they scale with player model size so there is less of a area to block with… For this additional combat superiority added with +4 skill, humans are the obvious choice for most if not all builds till the game is changed or adjusted to make bushman/elves natures more widely useful since atm +4 skill is way more useful than move speed or slight weight reduction.

I know this goes verse the “your defenders in heavy armor need to be dwarves” thing people are saying but the reality is that a tall human is going to survive things a small dwarf won’t with the exact same equipment and stats, I have tested this multiple times to the point where I have stopped using dwarfs since the negatives out weigh the -2 weight debuff difference too heavily, all the problems plus you miss out on 4 skill.

TLDR use heavy armor on humans, use humans as defenders/commanders its not a “only dwarfs” thing.


Paladins are great, they are a healthy start to any team and will carry you through most of the game due to being nearly unstoppable.

This builds concept is sound and while this build is nearly unbeatable I do want to find room to for a self revive like unyielding or death resistant, or both.. however in 99% of situations this is not required since it takes so much to kill this defensive character.

Confirmed can 1v1 orc master and win.


  • Human
  • Dwarf

So why Human if everybody says Dwarf? Simply put; 4 extra skill points. Those 4 extra skill points make up for the minor debuff from overweight in most situations… Where as a dwarf with or without that minor debuff is going to be the same unit, just with 4 less skill points.

Another point to note is that with most builds you need around 35str with heavy armor on a dwarf in order to brake clear of the weight debuff… Where as a human will have a -2 debuff at the same 25str.

So we’re talking about -2% atk speed, -2 dodge, -2%ep -2% move speed in exchange for 4 skill points at the end of the day.

Stats Minimum Requirements:

  • str – 10
  • end – 10
  • agi – 8
  • perc 10
  • int – 8
  • will – 10

Aim for this first than after this you have 3 directions:

  • Increase str as required with your equipment to get a reasonable level of debuff.
  • Increase fort for extra health once you have enough str.
  • Increase perc if you want more block rate to try different builds (most builds wont need this).

You could very easily go 15str and 12 fort with points left over still by level 25.


  • Ultimate warrior helmet (Gladiator helmet or orc master set helmet work too)
  • Champion Armor
  • Champion Gloves
  • Champion heavy boots or senior T2 for str
  • Vetern Legs T2
  • The God of war’s belt (can use champion’s belt too)
  • Starlight amulet (this negates most of the negative effects of being overweight)
  • Champions Cloak

This equipment set gives you +11 str +6 end +2 will, so between this extra strength and the starlight amulet we’ve negated most of the effects of being overweight.


  • Solid gold mace > shredder > mace club.
  • Refined heavy spear (Not perfect spear since its 15% flame pen instead of stab pen).

All the weapons have a few things in common that will help you select a reasonable weapon:

  • Penetration is most important since at the end to middle of the game everybody is going to be wearing med to heavy armor so you need to be able to penetrate it.
  • Pene>dmg>str>speed cuz if you run out of stamina by spamming atks you cant block without stamina.


  • Red kite shield and Tower shield are really the only two legitimate options imo.
  • Targe>kite>round for low level.

Skills (in order)

  • Shield Strike (1 to start)
  • Defender (1 to start)
  • Heavy armor expert
  • Commander (leave at 1 till end if you want)
  • First aid (fill in shield strike and defender after this)
  • Expert blocker
  • Duelist (leave at 1 till end if you want)
  • Counter Cut
  • Stonelike
  • Berzerker (leave at 1 no point going higher)
  • Headbutt
  • Death Resistant
  • Rescue
  • Sentry
  • Power in Numbers
  • Shield knock OR challenge (either works, SK is aoe but shorter, CH is longer but single targ)
  • Supress anger
  • Shield master

How Does This Build Work


  • Massive “shield strike” damage since shield strike does 100% of your block rate as damage, that means 80-100% block rate is what we’re aiming for if possible since this directly translates into a super powerful attack that is unblockable ontop of stunning the enemy for 4 secs!
  • This means at 100% block rate your hitting someone with a extremely powerful 100 dmg attack that they cannot avoid and stuns them for 4 secs farther opening them up to more damage, or allowing you to hit a target that dodges/blocks alot while they are stunned.
  • *You need to set a trigger to always attack current target, this way your gladiator will keep the target you select and continue to use this attack whenever it comes up on the target you selected.
  • Huge HeadButt since headbutt’s damage is based upon Tenacity, you can use it alot like we’re using shield strike above, instead of block, its tenacity! So this means our build with around 75% tenacity is dealing 10+75 damage with this attack, very respectable!
  • Not only does it do big damage on a tank like this due to your large tenacity, but it also stuns for 2 secs!
  • The only downside to headbutt is that is can sometimes miss due to low range, it can also be blocked & dodged so shield strike is still your main damage dealer here.
  • *I normally set my triggers so that it headbutts whoever is the most close, this can headbutt someone beside them or behind them who doesn’t see it coming, but you could also set it to target like shield strike but it gives people the chance to dodge/block since they are facing you.
  • Huge block rate mixed with Counter Cut means that you will be getting alot of chances to get extra attacks when you block by making counter attacks, this increases your dps as well as increases your block rate, that in turn increases your shield strike damage, Counter Cut is a very important skill for this build.
  • Stonelike adds 50% of block rate to your tenacity so that makes it extremely important for headbutt, however if your not using headbutt you could remove stonelike along with headbutt to try alternative builds ~ I do not advise this for your first attempt however
  • Supress Anger is good for keeping your stamina up, however with my endgame builds it doesn’t seem totally needed in alot of situations since you have alot of stamina gain elsewhere.. you could easily pull this from the build if you find yourself not needing it, however remember the more you block the more stamina you burn, so if you have unlimited stamina you can 1v4, so the more stamina recovery you have the more intense situations you can survive.
  • * Triggers for this you should always activate it when your below 75% stamina to keep your stamina up high
  • First aid is the base of any good paladin build. Pretty straight forward, it heals you 65 points, super important if your looking for your gladiator to survive the long haul, like in solo challenges where your one gladiator is expected to 1v1 a never ending stream of challengers till the tournament is over. Doubly so, if someone on your team is being targeted and has lost a fair amount of life, you can now heal them to bring them back into the fight or prevent them from dying.
  • * I normally add a trigger that tells him to heal when hp is below 95% hp so that hes always full hp for every situation, dungeons ect this is helpful for between battle areas/rooms. You want to keep your hps high, you dont want to let tyour hps drop low before healing. You also want to setup a 2nd trigger that heals allies when below 90%, this way you heal yourself first and than them after in theory, but most importantly that your healing your allies if they need it.
  • Rescue is great to have, pretty straight forward, it revives a ally.
  • Shield knock vs Challenge… its hard to say whats best, since challenge lasts twice as long, but it only targets one person… while shield knock targets everybody (putting you in more danger taking 4 peoples attacks) but since its aoe its a great way to save a ally that may be near death or needing a heal by switching the aggro from them to your shielder. While challenge is great for disabling a main gladiator from the enemy team, it only gets one… so in alot of situations it dosent save your team mates if there is more than one enemy targeting them, so in my personal opinion shield knock is better for saving allies while challenge is better for being offensively shutting down someone strong by makign them attack you without using skills for 8 secs.

Zealot “Kiara”

Zealots are great, they overwhelm their foes to the point of stamina exhaustion, leaving them defenseless verse you as you take their lives!

This build is “Alot” less tested than the paladin build so its still in the works, the concept is solid but I’d like to add “first aid” and “cunning” to this build as well, so I will be changing this eventually but its hard to tell exactly where to take the minimum 4 points for each without braking the overall build.

When you fight “Kiara” she is built kinda close to this.

Confirmed can 1v1 orc master and win.


  • Human

Human master race, get that +4 skill. We’re not wearing heavy armor so who cares about midget dwarves with bad combat, we’re going full offensive baby.

Stats Minimum Requirements:

  • str – 10
  • end – 10
  • agi – 10
  • perc 10 (I had this 13)
  • int – 10
  • will – 7

10 dual sword

Aim for this first than after this you have 2 directions:

  1. You can add Perc for extra crit chance (that damage baby!) block and accuracy! (advised).
  2. You can add Agility for extra attack speed, dodge and move speed (less useful to heavy stack).


  • Full 5x Med Champion gear (Monster set or lower sets work temp).
  • Champions belt.
  • Starlight amulet.
  • Champions Cloak.

Equip gives:

  • +8str +5end +1agi +8perc +1int +5will +additional bonuses

Matching Dual Weapon pairs:

  • Dualists glory is by far the best, it gives everything if you can dual weld two.
  • Solid Gold Mace (or mace club) two of these can give +6str to remove weight debuff but are slow.
  • Shredders are slow but decent dmg, mix well with your speed ups.
  • Battle axes, refined heavy spear, double axe and gladius as a last resort are viable low tier options.

All the weapons have a few things in common that will help you select a reasonable weapon:

  • They need matching armor penetration with as high as possible since armor penetrations stacks between both your weapons, meaning if you can find two 20% armor pen weapons of the same type that gives you 40% armor pen for your attacks, this is huge for endgame fighting level 20-25 heavy armor gladiators.
  • Attack speed of the weapons matter, but you have alot of speed boosts so its better to have a stronger weapon with 10+ min damage if possible so that your damage boosts and hits actually mean something.
  • Stamina damage is cool too, but armor penetration>damage>atk speed>attributes>stamina damage>other stats so you should for sure prioritize other things above that.

Skills (in rough order you may want to leave alot of these as 1 till you have a early build)

  • Gladiator (leave 1 till later)
  • med armor expert
  • Dualist (leave 1 max others first)
  • Counter Cut
  • Speed burst
  • Berzerker (leave 1 till later)
  • Execute
  • Headbutt
  • Quick withdrawl
  • Harmonious weld
  • Serial jabs
  • Whirlwind
  • Dual weapon master
  • Defender
  • Unleash rage (can max out the above skills at this point).
  • Note: you can also run without this skill if you find your dying due to using it.

So how does this build work?

Well with med champ armor and defender we have 76% dmg reduction and with dualist glory we have 91% block rate and 49 dodge, basically you do a bunch of damage as fast as possible while dodge and blocking.

The entire idea is that your going to use your attacks with “speed burst” to overwhelm the enemy with “serial jabs” and “harmonious weld+counter cut” causing anyone who your targeting to repeatedly block or dodge their stamina away till you can attack them without defense since their stamina is gone.

I’ve tried making this build work with heavy armor but its just simply too large of a handycap at that point without prioritizing strength heavily, we don’t want to do that, so medium armor it is. If you have a bit of a handycap, anything under a -5 isn’t anything too wild but if its over that you should start to question why that is or put some strength gear on.

Standard trigger to always atk target for execute and serial jabs

Always cast on self trigger for speed burst, you could do this on unleash rage but I don’t since this is something that should be used carefully, it adds more damage to your attacks but opens you up to more damage when you take hits… not advised to let the ai spam this whenever its up, but you can play with this or even remove it from the build.

Standard trigger for headbutt most close enemy, hopefully someone not targeting you since it can be dodged or blocked if they are targeting you but if they are not targeting you its a free hit.

Volodymyr Azimoff
About Volodymyr Azimoff 13972 Articles
I love games and I live games. Video games are my passion, my hobby and my job. My experience with games started back in 1994 with the Metal Mutant game on ZX Spectrum computer. And since then, I’ve been playing on anything from consoles, to mobile devices. My first official job in the game industry started back in 2005, and I'm still doing what I love to do.

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