Hey ya’ll, I’m Manny (littlemanuel on discord), also known as Berserker in PDN. I’ve been playing the game for over half a year now and I play a few other classes and Grandmaster is another one I play the most besides Randgrid. If you have any question regarding the class that is not addressed in the guide, feel free to hit me up in discord or in game. Lastly, Shoutouts to Vino for writing the guide of this class before its rework. He did an amazing job, which also made this easier for me to write/update.
Grand Master is a close to mid range DPS class with high burst and safe escapes. Your DPS is centered around your main combo of [Windbreaker] → [Spanning Cleave] → [Windbreaker] and stacking Sword Arrows to use [Sword Storm]. Since your normal bubbles (Ego) don't matter on this class, I'll be referring to Sword Arrows as bubbles.
Sword Arrows is the bubble of Grandmaster. You build Sword Arrows by using your Grandmaster skills, so just by doing your rotation, you can stack up on Sword Arrows normally. Sword Arrows can reach up to maximum of 10, but you can use the skill [Sword Storm] before so. You can also build bubble by using your main skills without hitting an enemy like some classes has to.
[Impact Wave]: See [Grand Wave] on Knight tree
[Brush Off]: Self cure/removes debuffs.
[Breaking Point]: Class buff. Please click this when you see rebuff icon.
[Windbreaker]: Your main damage skill, grants one bubble on cast. Hitting an enemy with [Spanning Cleave] refreshes its cooldown and increases the action speed, so you'll to do [Windbreaker] → [Spanning Cleave] → [Windbreaker] every time this skill is off cooldown. The full combo of all 3 skills grants 3 bubbles total.
[Spin Drift]: Good damage, moves you forward, and grants one bubble. Click LMB repeatedly to continue the skill up to 5 hits. Also gives -20% Critical Resistance debuff to enemies.
[Grand Wave]: This skill is an enhanced [Impact Wave], it grants one bubble, and it's pretty bad. It has a lot of end lag, so as soon as the projectile is launched, I try to cancel it with either [Assault Drive] or [Elusive Shot]. I barely use this personally, so this is on the bottom of the priority list.
[Impaler]: Ok filler skill that moves you forward slightly that grants one bubble, this is on the bottom end of my priority skills to use. The instant version you get from using [Elusive Shot] is great, which I use first than the regular version of [Impaler]
[Spanning Cleave]: Great damage, great utility, and it grants one bubble. If you miss the initial swing, you won't gain the bubble or follow up with the spinning information. I frequently dodge and reposition with the spinning. Follow up with the quicker cast of [Windbreaker] that's granted by this skill.
[Assault Slash]: I only use it by left clicking after [Assault Drive], so you wont need to have this on your skill bar.
[Assault Drive]: You can use this skill besides [Elusive Shot] to cancel your more laggy moves. Lets you left click for [Assault Slash]. Gives two bubbles, so this is my priority skill when building up bubble in between mechs.
[Skyward Crash], [Comet Dive], and [Beat Crush] - I call this the Beat Crush combo, and its mostly for Mystic Knight, but Grand Master can run out of skills so we use it too. You can use it by tumble>spacebar>LMB
[Beat Crush] is your main debuff skill, gives +20% damage taken debuff to enemies so press it every once in a while even if you aren't doing the full 3 skill combo.
[Dreadnought] - Full i-Frame and good damage. You can cancel instantly for the quick burst of damage with LMB. Use this skill off cooldown. Cooldown can be reduced up to 5s if all 10 Sword Arrows hit from [Sword Storm]. Also instantly grants [Time Fragment] on enemies hit.
[Arrogance]: Unwipeable buff that lasts 999 seconds and makes your class function properly. Use it once and then forget about it unless you die.
[Crossover]: Hard hitting skill that feels great to use and grants one bubble. Using [Double Helix] immediately after reduces its startup. Their cooldowns does not match so you will have to use crossover one more time by itself before [Double Helix] goes on cooldown.
[Elusive Shot]: This skill is your "get out of jail free card." It cancels you out of whatever you're doing, and is a full i-Frame up until you press Spacebar for the extra hits, or until your character puts the weapon away (a full 2 seconds). Its low cooldown and great utility make you spam this skill, and its your activator to gain [Impaler Instant] which greatly increases your bubble generation.
[Double Helix]: This skill has a long startup and long cast-time (by holding down LMB), which means you really only want to press it while you wait for other cooldowns to recover. It does enough damage so that your DPS doesn't go down while using it, but not much more. You can also skip to the burst hit by not pressing LMB anymore.
[Class Mastery I-III]: - Allows [Assasult Drive] to be followed up by [Assault Slash] with LMB
- Using [Elusive Shot] gives the instant version of [Impaler]
- Using spacebar again give another hit of [Elusive Shot]
[Grand Arsenal]: Good damage skill. Use left click on most bosses, but right click on huge bosses like dragons and golems.
[Sword Storm]: Consumes your Sword Arrows and shoots that many at the target location. You don't get a bonus by shooting a full 10, but the cooldown lines up so that the skill is ready around the same time you hit 10 Sword Arrows. Each arrow hit reduces CD of [Dreadnought] by .5s, so if all arrow hits, can reduce CD of [Dreadnought] by 5s.
[Awakened Passives]: - Allows your main skills to generate Sword Arrows/bubble upon use.
- Reduces cooldown of [Dreadnought] of 0.5s per Sword Arrow hit, up to 5s.
- Hitting main skills gives a 10% chance of inflicting [Time Fragment] on boss. Using [Elusive Shot] with boss who has [Time Fragment] reduces the cooldown of [Grand Arsenal] by 2s.
- [Spanning Cleave] resets the cooldown of [Windbreaker] when initial hit hits the enemy. Also allows the instant version of [Windbreaker] when [Spanning Cleave is hit]
Max HP boost and Final Damage boost.
- Spanning Cleave
- Dreadnought (note you can also run Damage Dreadnought but its just a personal preference)
I have a missing skill plate because I was given the idea by Eybie of running an extra stat plate for a little boost in damage. But if you want, you can run Damage Elusive Shot.
Skill Up Plate:
[Elusive Shot]: Long i-frame up to 2s, also has a short cooldown. Can be cancelled if you press spacebar again.
[Grand Arsenal]: Short i-frame, only on the RMB version of it on the swing part.
Tips and Tricks:
- Utilize [Spin Drift] > [Elusive Shot] > [Impaler] instant > regular [Impaler] and [Assasult Drive] LMB to build your bubble, since those are short cooldown skills. Those give 5 bubble.
- [Elusive Shot] is your get out of jail free card. Just use spacebar to escape an animation, or dodge stomps or mechs than can be i-framed.
- Dont immediately use LMB on [Spin Drift], wait for like .5 seconds to get that extra hit in.
- Get used to the distance of your skills especially the [Windbreaker] > [Spanning Cleave] combo, they have some distance to them that they can still hit enemy, hence Grandmaster being a close to mid ranged class.
BTG Rotation, Video and Spread:
Your main combo is [Wind Breaker] > [Spanning Cleave] > [Wind Breaker] and should be used off cooldown. Use [Sword Storm] whenever you reach 10 bubbles. After that, the rest of your skills are filler.Though there is still priority which skills you use after the [Windreaker] > [Spanning Cleave Combo] combo, these are mine:
1.) [Grand Arsenal]
3.) [Double Helix]
4.) [Spin Drift]
5.) Instant [Impaler]
6.) Regular [Impaler]
7.) [Comet Dive]
8.) [Beat Crush]
9.) [Impact Wave]