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TERA Class Primer: Slayer, Sorcerer, Archer, Berserker – Part 2

By on May 19, 2012 at 9:00 am, in Article, TERA  |  Comments: 4 comments

Ahh, the many flavors of Tera.  Most MMO’s boil down to targeting a mob, and clicking abilities which all are pretty much the same, with just a different animation and different amount of damage.  Tera breaks this mold, with it’s promoted “True-Action Combat”, and each class is almost a different gameplay experience from one another.

One of the most common questions asked by people new to Tera, is which class is right for me?  Coming from other MMO’s, there are some similarities to your traditional fantasy classes, but they all play widely different, due to the combat system.  Today in Part 2, we look at the rest of the classes in Tera, the DPS classes.

General Overview

A Slayer is one of the five DPS powerhouses of Tera. A slayer wears leather armor and wields a giant two-handed sword. They are in between a Warrior and Berserker in regards to speed of attacks. They start with an empty mana bar, and their basic attack generates mana, which they use for their special attacks. They are not as fast as a Warrior’s melee, as most of their attacks have a short windup time, but they also hit very hard when they land a blow. Slayers also have solid AoE damage as they can hit multiple targets with most of their swings. Most of their attacks chain into other ones, giving them a windup time speed increase, allowing them to chain attacks faster if they use them in the right orders. Their main avoidance is similar to a Warriors, which is the ability to dodge/roll out of the way of incoming attacks. One of the biggest strengths of a Slayer, is their high knockdown rate on some of their abilities. In almost every fight, a Slayer will knock down it’s target, nullifying it’s damage while it’s down, and allowing some high damage leap abilities to be used on the target for bonus damage. A Slayer, like a Lancer, attacks in the direction it is facing, but some abilities require high accuracy as they are overhand swings rather than wide sweeps.

Player Vs. Environment

Slayers are a bit slow to start, as they only have a 2 regular attacks until 16, but then they gain Overhand Strike, which is one of their main damaging abilities. It chains from almost every attack, and hits at double speed if you chain it. Also there is a glyph to give it a 50% chance to reduce its cooldown, making this one of a Slayers main attacks. At 38 they also gain Heart Thrust, which is their next big hitter, making them even more lethal. Slayers also have 2 solid stuns, high knockdown rate, and very high mobility. Slayers gain a charge ability at level 8 called Headlong Rush, and a sprint ability at 32. And to round it out, they have a few debuffing attacks, a couple of solid self buff cooldowns, and a decent ranged attack called Distant Blade. Due to all of these nice tools, and the love of big swords, Slayers are one of the most popular classes in Tera, along with Warriors.

Slayers have no problems soloing, and are very much liked in groups due to their solid DPS, and the ability to avoid a lot of damage, and are a solid addition to any group.

Player Vs. Player

As far as PVP goes, a Slayer is one of the most solid 1 vs 1 classes, and also very valuable in group PVP. Their knockdowns and stuns give them great control of players, and gap closers such as Headlong Rush and Sprint, prevent them from being kited easily, and Distant Blade, which allows them to kite other melee, or attack from range. In group PVP they are just as valuable.

General Overview

Rounding out the melee classes, last but not least, is the Berserker. They wield a giant great axe to smash foes, and wear plate armor. You should hope that you are never on the end of an incoming axe from a Berserker. They are the only character other than Lancers to wear plate armor, making them durable.  They also are able to block, similar to Lancers, by digging their large axe into the ground and blocking with the handle. They have no other dodge ability, except for a situational one they get at 60. Berserkers use the same resource system as Slayers. They start without mana, and gain it through their basic swings, allowing them to use mana on their special abilities. The main difference between Slayers and Berserkers, is that Berserkers main attacks all have a few seconds of charge up time. You must hold down a key, to charge your ability to maximum power, and then release it to unleash a massive attack. A Berserker is a high cost/reward class, and in turn, have the highest burst. It is hard for them to set up an accurate attack, due to the charge time and slow swing time, but if they do land a hit, it will probably 1 or 2 shot most players or mobs. During these charge times, the Berserker moves at a slower rate, but with proper glyphs, you can remove this slow.

Player Vs. Environment

Berserkers get their main attack, Thunder Strike, at level 8. It of course, is a charging ability, and one of their hardest hitters, but also requires great accuracy to land, due to it being an overhand swing. They have one stun, Flatten, to help hold people still to set up a hard hit with Thunder Strike. Throughout leveling, they also gain a whirlwind attack, a health stealing attack, a buff that increases their damage at the cost of defense, and an attack that uses health rather than mana. They also gain sprint called Dash at 32, like slayers, to help with their lack of mobility a bit. In addition, they gain an AoE Fear, and an AoE shout which disables other players evasion abilities temporarily. Berserkers also have similar AoE abilities to that of a Slayer, due to wide swinging attacks, but most of their special attacks, focus on overhand strikes, making a bit more difficult to AoE with these.

Berserkers are solid soloers and are welcomed in most all groups, but seem to have a little more difficult in high end hard mode dungeons, but still pretty commonly found. This is due to the fact that they tend to take more damage than other classes, as they need to be in melee range, but cannot avoid as much damage as other classes due to lack of dodge. Also be wary of Lancers, who have been known on occasion, to boot Berserkers at the beginning of dungeons, so they do not have to compete for plate armor drops.  A well-played Berserker is a great asset to any group though.

Player Vs. Player

In PVP, Berserkers are very situational. In 1 vs 1 PVP, they are fairly weak unfortunately. This is due to the fact that Berserkers big hitters, being charge-up attacks, are easily spotted and avoided by most players, and the lack of stuns and mobility for a Berserker, tend to cause them to run around chasing most players, without causing much damage. But on the other end of the spectrum, in group PVP, Berserkers excel. This is because if another player can set up a stun, or CC, or knockdown on a player, it opens a window for a Berserker to charge up a full attack. With no way for the player being able to avoid it, it can take out people in 1 or 2 hits usually.

General Overview

The first of the two main ranged DPS classes. Archer is fairly straightforward and similar to your traditional Archer from other games, but of course, with Tera’s combat, aiming actually matters. Archers obviously use a bow, and wear leather armor. They use the same mana system as Warriors and Lancers, starting full, and regen mana through their basic attack. Their AoE is slow at first and gets stronger at higher levels, but not as strong as a Sorcerers. Their AoE abilities consist of a shot penetrating multiple targets lined up, a lock-on ability to hit up to 5 targets, and a volley that they get at later levels. About half of their main attacks are charge up shots, similar to how a Berserker charges their abilities, and the other half being instant cast. Unlike other games, Archers do not have a pet, but due to true aiming and kiting, they do not need one. They are very solid DPS and fairly mobile, but a tradeoff is they do have to stand in place for some of their attacks. And one last thing to consider if you want to decide on Archer, is the fact that their attacks do more damage the closer they are, leading to having to DPS within 6 yards of anything, to do your full potential damage.

Player Vs. Environment

Archers gain a wide variety of attacks. Their 2 main attacks are Penetrating Arrow and Radiant Arrow, which is followed up in a combo with Final Salvo. Both of these are charge-up attacks, but both can be charged while moving. Archers also get some utility, such as Feign Death at 38, Web Arrow for snares at 42, two leap backwards abilities for escaping damage, a few self buffs, a DOT, a close range stun, and a Hunter’s Mark called Velik’s Mark. And of course a Hunter has to have traps. Traps are here in Tera too. Hunters get a slow trap at level 6, a stun trap, and an AOE fire trap at 26.

Archers are great soloers and can usually kill mobs taking little to any damage.  As far as grouping goes, Archers are a strong DPS class, and a good addition to any group. There are of course some groups who will only go for the perfect lineup, which sometimes excludes Archers, but don’t put much stock into this, as they are more than sufficient for any DPS slot.

Player Vs. Player

In PVP, Archers are decent. When it comes down to 1 vs 1, they are pretty balanced. The fact that they are ranged gives them a good advantage versus most classes, but the fact that a lot of their attacks require them to stand still, weakens their kiting ability a bit. They have many snares such as their traps and web shot though, which balances this out. In group PVP, they are solid, and can wreak a lot of havoc from a range if left unchecked.

General Overview

Last, but surely not least, is the Sorcerer. The all-powerful mage. Unlike most games, in this game, Sorcerers use a disc as their weapon. They also wear cloth armor like Priests and Mystics. A Sorcerer is all about casting big damage spells and blowing things up. If there is a type of damaging ability in the game, chances are, a Sorcerer has it. Everything from direct damage, to solid AoE, to lock-on abilities. Of course there is a downside to all of this power, which is they are your traditional glass cannon. All offense, low defense. Their mana system is also your traditional system like all other casters in MMOs, and their also balanced by the fact that they have to aim most of their spells, allowing mobs and players can move out of the way of these projectiles. Their projectiles tend to move slower than Archers.

Player Vs. Environment

Sorcerers have all sorts of attacks, but one of their main ones that will really increase their power is Fireblast at level 26. This puts a circle on the ground, and literally nukes everything in that circle, for high damage. The downside is it takes about 4 seconds to cast, but the upside are the high numbers it will hit for. And the next thing that can make a Sorcerer more of a fearsome foe, is when they reach level 48, and get Burst of Celerity. Glyphed it gives you a 70% faster casting time for 15 seconds every 25, making you a literal machine gun. Sorcerers are strong before this, but when they get this, it turns them into a wrecking ball. They also have multiple escapes including a couple backsteps, and the same Teleport Jaunt that Mystics get, allowing them to teleport short distances during fights. Rounding out these abilities, is also a Mana Barrier that absorbs damage, Stoneskin at 60 which freezes the Sorcerer but makes them immune to damage for 5 seconds, a root ability, a slow, and a sleep to set up some big nuke chains.

Sorcerers can tear through mobs when it comes to soloing, due to Fireblast, and are very much wanted in groups, as they can pump out tons of DPS, and can do it safely from a distance without any penalty. If they can avoid any ranged damage, they can do damage unrestricted for the most part. They are welcomed to any group.

Player Vs. Player

In regards to PVP, Sorcerers are solid in 1 vs 1, but require a good amount of skill in avoidance and kiting. Their downside of course is that they are very squishy and cannot take many hits, but if a Sorcerer can set up a sleep to Fireblast combo, they can take a good chunk of any players health. If the sleep misses or breaks from other damage, they can always fall back on their regular attacks which are still powerful in their own right, along using their mobility around to keep the enemy off them. This is key, because if a Sorcerer gets stunned or knocked down, it could cost them the fight. In group PVP, Sorcerers are also very powerful, and if you can keep your partners from breaking your sleep, or have them CC people while you build up your Fireblast, you will do tons of damage.


That’s all for this writeup on classes. Hopefully it helps you get a better understand of what each class is capable of, and chose the right class for you.

  • Michael Elrod

    Not many people commenting, probably because the site is new, but I’m enjoying the articles so far to include both the part 1 and part 2 of the classes.  Very solid overall appraisals of the classes, and I used them to ultimately decide to roll a lancer (having a blast so far).  Keep up the good work.

  • sirkorgan

    In the current build, archers do not have to be within 6m to do optimal damage – it used to be that way, but it’s no longer the case. The maximum damage range is different for different shots but generally speaking you do not have to be closer than 12m to do full damage. In fact, firing your shots from 10-12m will keep you safe from a lot of things that kill the melee classes while also allowing you to keep a good position to maintain DPS on mobile targets.

    • Kestrel36

      A lot of sorcerer skills require them to be within 10m of the target in order to hit it – fireblast, magma bomb, the poison dot thing etc. 

      I didn’t know that they had changed the Archers ranges though. That is good news if they have, although I did like the play of the archer when you had to run in and out and watch the boss very closely or risk getting trampled by it. But it should help with the image of the Archer at the moment as being ‘bad’ dps. No class is ‘bad’, people just need to understand how they work. 

  • Dud’Strife

    ”Slayer is one of the most solid 1 vs 1 classes” ????????????

    who write this never played as slayer for sure………….