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The Shieldbreaker's main asset is her ability to counter PROT and Guards. These are accomplished with her main skills Pierce and Puncture. Combined with her long reach, she is capable of striking any point in the enemy formation and nobody is safe from her. As those skills move her forward, she's often seen at the very front of the formation to have minimal disruption on her own party, but they can also be used to help reposition her and her allies.
Puncture in particular has extra utility in this game mode. It hits anywhere, bypasses and breaks guard, and can pull the target. Using Puncture on the enemy healer is a common opening move to force them into a more vulnerable position and prevent Men-at-Arms or Houndmasters from coming to their aid.
Serpent Sway contributes greatly to the Shieldbreaker's longevity as it raises two Blocks for her, and is handy if she finds herself on Death's Door. Throwing up the Blocks will buy her lots of spare turns as the enemy would rather spend their time attacking the rest of the party than waste attacks breaking Blocks. You can even get the opportunity to heal her off Death's Door. Any attacks that she dodges will not consume a Block. Be aware that Blocks only negates damage and potential Deathblows, so any additional effects like Stress, Stun, or DoTs will still take effect.
The choice of fourth move is up to your discretion. If your party can accommodate her movement, then her Back-moving skills can be used. Adder's Kiss lets her inflict a potent blight to a frontal enemy while Impale can do so for the entire enemy formation. Expose can cancel enemy Stealth but its main value lies in its Stress and raised Critical vulnerability debuff which can amplify the efficiency of a Stress team. If your team has the means to put the Shieldbreaker in position 2 on their own, Captivate can be used to inflict more potent Blights and Daze problematic targets in the middle of the enemy formation.
The Shieldbreaker's personal Trinkets are very straightforward to use, though most would pick the Graceful Anklet and Scaled Shoulder to improve her longevity and make her harder to kill. Many also choose to use The Finisher on her since it lets her deliver Deathblows to anyone in the formation regardless of her position or active Guards. The Fang Talisman can improve her offense, especially if you're using someone like the Antiquarian to inflict party-wide Blights for her to capitalize on.
The Shieldbreaker may have low health but she has very high DODGE. It's not unusual to find her notoriously hard to hit. She puts out a lot of raw damage that bypasses PROT so weathering her attacks may prove difficult, but the lack of powerful AoE damage makes her easily countered by single-target heals. If you can consistently heal off the damage you can afford to leave her for last and kill off the rest of the party.
Since her very presence invalidates Guard and PROT, forgo using those kinds of skills and take a more offensive approach. You may want to consider spreading DMG debuffs instead of raising PROT to mitigate her damage output.
When the enemy Shieldbreaker hits low health or even Death's Door they're almost confirmed to use Serpent Sway for safety. If you do have area-of-effect attacks you can use those to chip away at the blocks - said attacks will usually inflict extra effects like DoTs or stress that aren't prevented by Blocks. You can also choose to focus your Stress attacks on her, as the Blocks will not stop her from dying to a heart attack. Otherwise, work on killing off the rest of the team since working through the Blocks and her high DODGE is going to take a long time.
This page was last edited on 13 July 2020, at 04:50.
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