Star Wars: The Old Republic - Carnage Marauder Guide (6.2.1)


If overwhelming your opponents in a flurry of brutal attacks delivering major burst damage is your preferred means of carving a bloody path through the galaxy, then the Carnage Marauder is the perfect Advanced Class for you in Star Wars: The Old Republic. In this guide we'll take a look at how you can channel all that pent up bloodlust most efficiently.

Carnage is one of three advanced classes for the Marauder subclass of the Sith Warrior, with Fury and Annihilation being the other two. It is mirrored by the Combat advanced class of the Jedi Knight's Sentinel Subclass.

Introduction

As a pure-DPS subclass, many players make the mistake of assuming that there can't really be any big difference between the Marauder's subclasses, unlike others where different specs will put you in different roles. The truth is much more nuanced, with all three advanced classes taking a different approach to how you deal that damage.

Unlike the damage-over-time focus of Annihilation or the hybrid DoT-Burst-AoE cocktail of Fury, Carnage is laser-focused on dishing out huge quantities of damage in short, devastating bursts while controlling the battlefield with quick target swapping. Ever since Tacticals were introduced, Carnage has become even more viable in both PvE and PvP with a fantastic build that also boosts your sustained DPS, removing the opponent's chance to recover in between bursts.

Carnage isn't a particularly hard spec to play since it has some fairly fixed rotations, but you still need to stay on your toes - however, your eyes won't be glued to the ability bar like they are with Annihilation Marauders.

Gearing

Items

If you are looking into optimizing your gear, we're going to assume that you've already hit Item Rating 306 - at this point, it's time to get the right bonuses. The set bonus you are gunning for with the ideal Carnage build relies on having 6 pieces of the Descent of the Fearless armor set to get all three bonus tiers.

Descent of the Fearless

These bonuses will net you +2 Mastery, a 10 second 10% damage buff upon gaining or using a charge of Furious Power, which feeds into the third bonus of an added 10% chance of building a charge of Furious Power on each hit. While this third effect has a 5 second cooldown, this still builds up a near constant damage buff if you are using your rotations correctly.

This leaves one slot open, where for the best results we suggest placing a piece of the Amplified Champion set for that sweet extra damage amplifier. It doesn't matter what slot you dedicate to this piece and which 6 get pieces of Descent of the Fearless.

When it comes to relics, two combinations rise above the rest, though one of them will require you to farm the Nature of Progress Operation. The first combo is Sha’tek Relic of Serendipitous Assault (Renown cache drop/Tech Fragment Vendor) and Sha’tek Relic of Focused Retribution (NoP drop), and the second - which does not rely on Nature of Progress - is Sha’tek Relic of the Primeval Fatesealer and Sha’tek Relic of Devastating Vengeance.

The modifications that best suit this build consist of 7x Superior Versatile Armoring 80, 2x Superior Versatile Hilt 80 and 9x Superior Lethal Mod 80R-2. While you are still gearing up, lower ranked versions of these types are also suitable.

By far the best tactical for a Carnage Marauder is Fanged God Form which drops from Flashpoint bosses. What this tactical does is apply a 10% crit chance buff when using Massacre, while also reducing the rage cost of your next Massacre. This bonus can stack three times. The rage cost reduction is the main point of importance here, as Massacre is the most important ability in your rotation, and having a reduced cost immensely optimizes the rotation since you are relying on fewer generators.

MORE:  Star Wars: The Old Republic Item Rating 306 Guide

Amplifiers

What you are aiming for here is getting a Weapon Expertise amplifier on all items where you can - this comes down to 9 slots throughout your armoring and hilt mods, plus one on your Amplified Champion set piece. Thanks to the changes implemented in Update 6.2.1, getting the right amplifiers is much easier.

Once your amplifiers and items are optimized, your Alacrity stat should be well above 2000 and your Accuracy reaching 1500. The rest are generally irrelevant.

Utilities

Carnage is a very lax spec when it comes to utilities. Unlike some other specs where micromanaging your utilities is essential for the perfect build, with Carnage you can just pick and choose whatever strikes your fancy with minimal impact on your performance.

Carnage Utilities

That said, there are a couple best left unused: Overwhelm, Cloak of Rage, Interceptor, Strangulate, Maiming Reach, Cloak of Annihilation and Through Victory. Some of these are either made redundant by other, better Utilities or have exceedingly rare and specific use cases.

As long as you avoid these, go wild - that said, we very strongly recommend using Thirst for Rage, and the rotations covered in the next section will assume that you have this utility.

Rotations

Carnage Marauder went through some major changes in the past few updates, so if you are a returning player here to freshen up your Carnage memories some of this may seem strange to you. The most fundamental difference is caused by the Fanged God Form tactical which allowed for previously impossible optimizations in the rotation.

As is the case with many specs, there are three rotations you need to learn for Carnage Marauder. There's your opener which consists of buffing yourself up and then getting in the key first strikes, the main rotation you'll use for the majority of any fight, and the finisher which you switch over to whenever the opponent's health is below 30%. Just about all classes feature some abilities that can only be used on opponents below 30% health, hence that being the finisher cutoff.

If you note that roughly the second half of all three rotations are almost identical, memorizing these will be much easier.

Note: skip to next ability whenever a given step is on cooldown, never wait in between actions

Opener - complete once

  1. Channel Hatred
  2. Force Charge
  3. Battering Assault
  4. Berserk
  5. Massacre x2
  6. Frenzy
  7. Furious Power
  8. Massacre
  9. Bloodthirst
  10. Ferocity
  11. Vicious Throw
  12. Devastating Blast
  13. Gore
  14. Massacre x4
  15. Ferocity
  16. Devastating Blast
  17. Battering Assault
  18. Ravage
  19. Furious Power
  20. Massacre x5

Main - repeat until 30% health

  1. Berserk
  2. Ferocity
  3. Furious Power
  4. Vicious Throw
  5. Devastating Blast
  6. Battering Assault
  7. Gore
  8. Massacre x3
  9. Ferocity
  10. Devastating Blast
  11. Ravage
  12. Battering Assault
  13. Furious Power
  14. Massacre x5

Finisher - repeat until 0% health

  1. Berserk
  2. Ferocity
  3. Furious Power
  4. Vicious Throw
  5. Devastating Blast
  6. Battering Assault
  7. Gore
  8. Massacre x3
  9. Ferocity
  10. Furious Power
  11. Vicious Throw
  12. Devastating Blast
  13. Battering Assault
  14. Massacre x5

The sustained haste buff of triggering Berserk that often combined with the stacking buffs of Massacre are what elevated the Carnage Marauder beyond simply being a burst-damage heavy hitter to being able to deliver a consistently high rate of damage alongside those bursts it is famous for. When played right, a Carnage Marauder will chew through even those classes with the highest survivability, and making it an immensely effective damage dealer in both PvE and PvP while maintaining a measure of flexibility by allowing each player to tailor their utilities to their personal tastes without fearing for major disadvantages.

Aron Gerencser
Gaming at least as long as he's been walking, Aron is a fan of all things sci-fi and lover of RPGs. Having written about games for years, he's right at home reporting most of the breaking news in the industry and covering the happenings of the e-sports world. When not writing, editing or playing, you can find Aron on Facebook.