SWTOR Trooper Vanguard PVP Video @ 14 Tactics Spec in Alderaan


This is my first gameplay / guide video for the Vanguard advanced class in Star Wars: The Old Republic. Vanguard is the mirror class to the Bounty Hunter Powertech, so the material covered in this video is relevant to players of either class.

The video provides detailed educational commentary on the DPS mechanics, CC abilities, and analysis of match play in Alderaan.

Comments / Errata:

  1. I ran Plasma Cell for the entire match. I did not run Ion Cell because we lacked DPS and our healing was sufficiently good that Guard was not needed

To see me PVP’ing live, check out the streaming schedule on TwitchTV. My stream features real-time narration and commentary – and to the extent possible interaction with the Chat Room.

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Posted in PVP, SWTOR, Vanguard / Powertech, Video
46 comments on “SWTOR Trooper Vanguard PVP Video @ 14 Tactics Spec in Alderaan
  1. Stephen says:

    Any chance you can do some work on Empire Classes??

    • taugrim says:

      Stephen :

      Any chance you can do some work on Empire Classes??

      The classes are mirrored.

      The 5 ACs I covered on Republic side work the same way on the Empire side.

      As it turns out, we are rolling Empire (not my preference, but w/e), so I will have Emp videos.

      But. The. Classes. Are. The. Exact. Same. Faction. Doesn’t. Matter.

  2. Nvrdie says:

    Another great guide Ed. I enjoyed watching the live stream and is fun to see you rework the material into these infovids.

    While watching I found myself clicking back and pausing to see more clearly the things you talk about. Action is fast paced, maybe a Freeze frame every so often when you draw attention to positioning would help and give you more control of the pace of footage.

    Im looking forward to your next. :D

    Nvrdie

    • taugrim says:

      Nvrdie :

      While watching I found myself clicking back and pausing to see more clearly the things you talk about. Action is fast paced, maybe a Freeze frame every so often when you draw attention to positioning would help and give you more control of the pace of footage.

      Yea I’ve thought about slow-mo or freeze framing or speeding things up, but I want people to see things in the speed that they happen.

      I pack a lot of info in my narration, and I know that may require viewers to watch a video multiple times to have it sink it. My streams tend to be easier to follow, but when I make a YT video “guide” I’m trying to pack in as much useful info as I can in 10-12 minutes.

  3. dryiggles says:

    Another great guide. I also really get quite annoyed with the dot interrupting channeling as well. I hope it gets changed if not at launch soon after.

    I had a few times I couldn’t even use my out of combat heal because of that and at times turned into an unfortunate event in the end.

    Love your guides and streams and your take on all the classes and use of mechanics not only per class, but just general common sense on situations.

    Keep up the great work. :D

    ~ dryiggles

    • taugrim says:

      dryiggles :

      Another great guide. I also really get quite annoyed with the dot interrupting channeling as well. I hope it gets changed if not at launch soon after.

      ~ dryiggles

      I hope so too, it’s one of the few nitpicks I have for Voidstar and Alderaan. Overall they’re well-designed BGs.

  4. Kamein says:

    Great job on all the vid’s and the streams. I didn’t realize I’ve played rift with you before until I told my friend to watch your stream. Char names were Lalka, Kamien and my buddy was Crumb (and variations).

    Nice to see you’re going to be rolling Emp maybe we’ll end up on the same server again in this game. Anyhow great job again and thanks for helping me pass the time until launch in a productive way :)

    Kamein

    PS. Shoot me an email when you guys pick a server I’ll try and get my gang over there as well. It’ll be nice to play with mature players again.

  5. Mittens says:

    Hey Taugrim, once you figure out your build, would you be able to post it so i have a template to follow?

    • taugrim says:

      Mittens :

      Hey Taugrim, once you figure out your build, would you be able to post it so i have a template to follow?

      I’ll be chronicling my journey on SWTOR, so yes, you will see specs over time posted.

  6. Chris says:

    Looks like a fun build. Do you think it has potential in PvE content, or is it primarily a PvP build?

  7. Excelsior says:

    Yeah i love the ability to soften your opponent at range then suprise them by moving in close with melee attacks. Ensures you can always apply pressure. What is your take on the healing v. DPS in SWTOR PvP? From the videos it seems that their fairly well balanced. Can you burn a healer with your Vanguard or Shadow 1v1 or is that too inefficent to try?

    • taugrim says:

      Excelsior :

      Yeah i love the ability to soften your opponent at range then suprise them by moving in close with melee attacks. Ensures you can always apply pressure. What is your take on the healing v. DPS in SWTOR PvP? From the videos it seems that their fairly well balanced. Can you burn a healer with your Vanguard or Shadow 1v1 or is that too inefficent to try?

      Killing any player in SWTOR takes time, a healer even moreso.

      Honestly not sure if a Vanguard can kill a healer solo. I can certainly harass the heck out of them.

      Shadow/Assassin has burst damage and CC, and Sentinel has sustained high DPS and healing debuff, so I expect from a TTK perspective they’d be the best to bring down a healer 1v1.

    • Mittens says:

      Excelsior from Rift, or just coincidence?

  8. Cosmic Osmo says:

    Hi Taugrim, love your videos and stream, keep it up.

    Smoke grenade looks like a really great talent for tipping the scales when fighting over a node. Do you think it’s worth skipping Fire Pulse to get it? Havoc training is obviously a must for any Tactics Vanguard, but because Shock Absorbers is pretty lackluster, I’m tempted to take just 28 in Tactics and get more of the juicy low-level shield spec talents, something like this:

    http://www.torhead.com/calculator/skill#801GMh0zZrsr0RrckzcZb.1

  9. taugrim says:

    Cosmic Osmo :

    Hi Taugrim, love your videos and stream, keep it up.

    Smoke grenade looks like a really great talent for tipping the scales when fighting over a node. Do you think it’s worth skipping Fire Pulse to get it? Havoc training is obviously a must for any Tactics Vanguard, but because Shock Absorbers is pretty lackluster, I’m tempted to take just 28 in Tactics and get more of the juicy low-level shield spec talents, something like this:

    http://www.torhead.com/calculator/skill#801GMh0zZrsr0RrckzcZb.1

    I had not considered going 11/28 for Smoke Grenade, but that is an awesome idea.

    I’m not sold on your selection of the other 10 points in Shield Spec, but the 11/28 concept is brilliant.

  10. I’ve watched all your guides and they are great! I had no Idea about the jumping movment impairment and that is somethng that I used alot during PvP. Your insight into PvP is outstanding. Alothough I’m sad to see that you have been persuaded by the dark side, If I see you in WZ’s i’ll know that we have a good match!!

  11. Frizzle says:

    This sort of reminds me of a Prot Pally. Some ranged attacks, healing, tanky and good melee abilities. That’s how I see you so am totally stoked to see you getting back to your roots!!!! Kind of want to play one now though:(

    • Frizzle says:

      Oops that wasn’t supposed to be a reply

    • taugrim says:

      Frizzle :

      This sort of reminds me of a Prot Pally. Some ranged attacks, healing, tanky and good melee abilities. That’s how I see you so am totally stoked to see you getting back to your roots!!!! Kind of want to play one now though:(

      Every class in this game is fun, which is truly rare IMO. Never experienced that in any MMORPG.

      Glocknall on Twitter came up with a great analogous class to Vanguard (Tactics) – RIFT Riftblade Warrior.

      He’s right IMO, that’s the closest comparison.

  12. Freddo says:

    Another great guide, thank you!

    Is offhealing even an option as vanguard? How is survivability compared to the commando in your opinion?

    • taugrim says:

      Freddo :

      Is offhealing even an option as vanguard? How is survivability compared to the commando in your opinion?

      Vanguard can’t heal. No tank in this game can meaningfully heal.

      Vanguard is tankier than Commando but can’t heal and has fewer RDPS tools.

  13. Freddo says:

    Vanguard can’t heal. No tank in this game can meaningfully heal.
    Vanguard is tankier than Commando but can’t heal and has fewer RDPS tools.

    Ok, ty!
    Is the ability to knock back oponents exclusive for the commando? (I guess that makes sence if the vanguard gets the ability to pull oponents)

  14. Freddo says:

    Every class in this game is fun, which is truly rare IMO. Never experienced that in any MMORPG.

    Oh… I’ll have to level one of each AC… Well OK!

  15. daniel says:

    taugrim, is there a reason why you arnt considering specing into shield spec. to get the charge ability and the bonuses to stockstrike? It seems like that would be a very effective tool with this type of build, much like the battle charge of the shammy in rift

    • taugrim says:

      daniel :

      taugrim, is there a reason why you arnt considering specing into shield spec. to get the charge ability and the bonuses to stockstrike? It seems like that would be a very effective tool with this type of build, much like the battle charge of the shammy in rift

      I’ll try both trees at higher levels. I like Tactics right out of the gate.

  16. Mittens says:

    saying this as a pvp newb trying to understand my place with this class. I’ve watched the video a good 6 times, and read up on the skills used. Im still sure what role we’re playing as a vanguard from the video. heals, buffs, dps, their purpose is easy to figure out, but im watching the video trying to figure out what my “place” is in a pvp team. What specificially will i be contributing to the team that can be distinguished from the other classes with vanguard? Does it make sense what im trying to ask?

    • taugrim says:

      Mittens :

      saying this as a pvp newb trying to understand my place with this class. I’ve watched the video a good 6 times, and read up on the skills used. Im still sure what role we’re playing as a vanguard from the video. heals, buffs, dps, their purpose is easy to figure out, but im watching the video trying to figure out what my “place” is in a pvp team. What specificially will i be contributing to the team that can be distinguished from the other classes with vanguard? Does it make sense what im trying to ask?

      Vanguard/Powertech is a can-tank class in SWTOR.

      Meaning you have the Guard buff, which is a great tool for keeping a friendly up under focus fire. This ability is what really made tanks in WAR work.

      At higher levels we get a ranged pull.

      We deal meaningful damage and can engage as a close-range fighter or as a short-range kiter.

      I love the playstyle personally, it suits my preferred playstyle like a glove. Can melee, can kite, will travel baby!

  17. Mittens says:

    Mittens :

    ….used. Im still *not* sure what role we’re playing……

  18. Benjamin says:

    Hi Ed, First time poster, long time watcher, you do a great job of breaking things down and even though I dont play the classes you talk about (or even have the same playstyle as you) I watch every single vid you put out.

    I loved my Bard in Rift, although I never made it past level 36 so never got to see whether the style was as dynamic at endgame. I chose bard and (rogue tank spec) as they had great synergy, and then chose demo for the sticky bomb which I was constantly using to save the team. This spec was the most fun I have had in any PVP in the way it gave me a bit of CC, a bit of movement and good group buff/assist versatility.

    To cut to the chase is there are similar(ish) class to the Rift Bard in SW:TOR?

    I dont have much game time anymore, so I am trying to cut down my experimentation time with so research ;)

    Cheers, Benjamin

    • taugrim says:

      Benjamin :

      I loved my Bard in Rift, although I never made it past level 36 so never got to see whether the style was as dynamic at endgame. I chose bard and (rogue tank spec) as they had great synergy, and then chose demo for the sticky bomb which I was constantly using to save the team. This spec was the most fun I have had in any PVP in the way it gave me a bit of CC, a bit of movement and good group buff/assist versatility.

      To cut to the chase is there are similar(ish) class to the Rift Bard in SW:TOR?

      AFAIK there isn’t a buffing class in SWTOR similar to RIFT Bard.

      As far as playstyle goes, you should probably try a Scoundrel or Operative. They are pretty mobile, have HoT and cast-time healing, good CCs, and Stealth.

      What you’ll find in SWTOR is that the healing classes are much more versatile compared to healers in most games.

      • Benjamin says:

        Thanks Ed, you’re a champ :)

        Gunna give that smuggler a go on launch and see if it can live up to the fun of the bard.

        Must say I hope SWTOR keeps my interest better than Rift, was fun for a bit and then I just got disinterested and wandered off for some reason.

        Thanks for the advice, Benjamin

  19. Mazzic says:

    Good video. Also liked the keybinding and movement video. Been using the left side binding technique for years, tip for those having issues with it early on:

    I never learned to type properly as a kid, so for me just putting some stickers on important keys, and helped give me a reference by touch, really helped me pick up the proper positioning of the hand and figures. Really helped break me of the “look down” syndrome – some people, my roommate especially have a tendency to have to look down at their keyboards during pvp or even pve, and that’s just a bad thing, especially in pvp.

    • taugrim says:

      Mazzic :

      Good video. Also liked the keybinding and movement video. Been using the left side binding technique for years, tip for those having issues with it early on:

      I never learned to type properly as a kid, so for me just putting some stickers on important keys, and helped give me a reference by touch, really helped me pick up the proper positioning of the hand and figures. Really helped break me of the “look down” syndrome – some people, my roommate especially have a tendency to have to look down at their keyboards during pvp or even pve, and that’s just a bad thing, especially in pvp.

      Using stickers is an awesome tip.

      For the same reason a lot of keyboard manufacturers put a bump on the “F” and “J” keys, to allow people to find the ASDF and JKL; position easily.

      If you have the time, please post this comment on the Strafing Guide. Lots of people would benefit from your tip:

      http://taugrim.com/2011/04/07/guide-to-strafing-movement-and-keybindings/

      • Mazzic says:

        Yeah it worked for me. Tossed it in the other thread. One question about the mirroring of Trooper to BH: the transition from ammo to heat, does it parellel well in your experience? In the beta I played I had no trouble with ammo management in PvP, but the heat seemed to be a little harder to keep balanced, maybe I just wasn’t using the abilities right tho – was just a weekend beta, and I did want to try all the classes.

        • taugrim says:

          Mazzic :

          Yeah it worked for me. Tossed it in the other thread.

          Thanks!

          Mazzic :

          One question about the mirroring of Trooper to BH: the transition from ammo to heat, does it parellel well in your experience? In the beta I played I had no trouble with ammo management in PvP, but the heat seemed to be a little harder to keep balanced, maybe I just wasn’t using the abilities right tho – was just a weekend beta, and I did want to try all the classes.

          Trooper and BH have a mirror mechanic which simply goes in opposite directions: full->empty (Trooper) versus empty->full (BH).

          I’ll have to get used to the BH style as most of us are used to “mana” bars that deplete (full->empty).

  20. Dodgycookies says:

    Great vids taugrim, i liked the tips and tricks on overall strategies in the war fronts. I see that you only got to 14 so here’s my opinions of vanguard pvp at higher levels(mid to high 40’s). Having tried all 3 trees in pvp, i feel that all trees are viable as a vanguard/powertech.

    Shield has the most control with stuns snares charges and harpoon. It has huge durability but moderate sustained damage(great ammo regen). It also has great mobility with a charges(+speed upgrade) but lacks a second trinket which isnt too bad because of damage reduction. This makes it a great peel/support/control spec.

    Tactics applies the most pressure and its short cd on interrupts is a great tool for more in your face action. The second trinket is really nice, but i felt i was depending too much on procs. Lack of a extra charge or stun is what you give up for the damage though. Great for pressuring ranged dps or heals with kicks and spell lockouts as you burn them down.

    The assault tree is as you say a dot heavy class. this makes it really nice when defending a node. You get a second trinket + bubble on a super short cool down. Survivability is dependent on cds esp when cc’ed and control low compared to the other two Damage is good, but very opportunistic(ie dot everything so they cant cap and wait for something to drop below 30%).

    • taugrim says:

      Dodgycookies :

      Great vids taugrim, i liked the tips and tricks on overall strategies in the war fronts. I see that you only got to 14 so here’s my opinions of vanguard pvp at higher levels(mid to high 40′s). Having tried all 3 trees in pvp, i feel that all trees are viable as a vanguard/powertech.

      That was an excellent summary. Thanks so much for sharing your experience!

    • Salty says:

      Good to hear Dodgy, as another aspiring vanguard it was great to hear some later game thoughts.

  21. Freddo says:

    Hey Taugrim

    I’d really like to know if u can push back opponents with the vanguard like you can with the commando or do you get the pull instead?

    Sorry if im nagging about it :)

    • taugrim says:

      Freddo :

      I’d really like to know if u can push back opponents with the vanguard like you can with the commando or do you get the pull instead?

      Vanguard/PT gets the ranged pull instead of the PBAOE knockback of Commando/Mercenary.

  22. Mittens says:

    looking forward to your guide Taugrim. I made a vanguard tactics, and got it to 25, but i just dont understand the playstyle yet. Basically, i get pwned by anything ranged.

  23. benjamin says:

    After staring at torhead and my computer for about an hour I still can’t decide whether to vanguard or commando, and damn you Ed you make both look too fun.

    Any ideas as to whether vanguard will make for a good pvp tank?

  24. Ontel says:

    How do you think a tactics spec can do in pve/raids? Also when can we see some more videos? Last thing I would like to see is some of your keybinds or macros that you use.

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