Dragons Dogma 2Vocations

Dragon’s Dogma 2 Archer Build Guide

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Dragon’s Dogma 2 Archer Build Guide

In this Dragon’s Dogma 2 archer build guide, we’ll discuss the vocation, its capabilities, and its strengths and weaknesses. I think it’s a solid class, and I’d probably consider it one of the most balanced classes in Dragon’s Dogma 2.

The Archer is already known as one of the weaker vocations in the game due to how much damage the other vocations do. It can control a fight very well and from a relatively safe distance.
Unfortunately, what made this vocation strong in the original game has been stripped. If that were the case across all vocations, these changes would’ve been good, but as many vocations are incredibly overpowered, it leaves the Archer in a strange position.

They’re also the only class capable of using the Arrow of Unmaking, which technically is the strongest damaging thing in the game, for whatever that’s worth.

DD Archer Class Overview

See where the Archer ranks in our Dragon’s Dogma 2 vocation tier list.

The Build

The Archer’s early game is relatively rough, as he clearly does a lot less DPS than most vocations. He is a safe vocation, though. With range comes the comfort of a ranged play style, so you’re much less likely to be focused and killed.

The Archer, to me, feels like it was supposed to be this heavy-hitting Sniper. This is different in reality; most shots lock you in place and do mediocre damage compared to other classes. I enjoyed the Archer, but it doesn’t feel great being locked in place with no punch for the downside. So I played the Archer with Spiral Arrows and Debilitations more in mind. It’s a significantly more mobile playstyle and moves away from using skills like Deathly Shot and Tempest Shot.

Our main goals and purposes are debilitation and crowd control. The Archer’s kit allows us to build around the ability to apply some form of debilitation or knock something off balance.

Whether this is done through Exploding targets or continually firing Spiral Arrows with a boon, you’re able to apply them at a significantly higher rate than other vocations.

Weapon Skills

Whirling Arrow (Spiral Arrow)

We use this everywhere. It’s not as heavy-hitting as Exploding Shot, Heavenly Shot, or other skills like Tempest/Deathly Shot. Where it does shine is its ability to crowd-control smaller foes and eventually knock larger foes off balance. It’ll also quickly apply boon debilitations due to our ability to stack multiple Spiral Arrows on one target, coincidentally increasing its impact and damage.

Exploding Shot (Erupting Shot) (Requires Ammunition)

The Exploding Shot has great damage. It can ground foes that have been knocked off-balance and can also be stacked. Shoot enough of them, and it’ll apply an enemy with burning.

Blighting Shot/Drenching Shot (Nocuous Shot) (Requires Ammunition)

Blighted Shot is a damage-over-time skill, essentially a poison. It does well on larger foes, especially in lengthy battles. A second Arrow will trigger Fulmination Poison, further increasing damage. Drenching Shot is also a solid choice here if you have some freezing capabilities at the party; keep in mind it won’t mix too well with Exploding Shot.

Heavenly Shot

Solid damage could be stronger, but it’s worth using. Hitting a weak spot of a creature while downed will massively damage the target, typically 1-2 Bars of health.

DD Archer Heavenly Shot new


Augments are consistent across vocations, with many opting for the same things. I pick a few things based on preference, and I recommend you do the same. Avidity and Subtlety, for example, aren’t massive, but one helps you be a bit more mobile, while the other helps you not be focused.

We take Constancy, as it just keeps us upright by giving us a boost to our knockdown resistance. Zeal and Endurance are here for a tad bit of Stamina management.

  • Constancy (Sorcerer)
  • Zeal (Wayfarer)
  • Endurance (Archer)
  • Subtlety (Thief)
  • Avidity (Archer) (Mettle, Thew, and Dynamism)
  • Lethality (Archer) (Mettle, Thew, and Dynamism)

Mettle, Thew, and Dynamism can all be used here depending on whether we want to move with more weight or receive less damage. Mettle, for example, is huge as it gives us a potential 30% damage reduction. Lethality, on the other hand, is more damage, but the increase is suggested to be around 5%, which isn’t huge.

Archer DD Enabled Augments


You’ll want to open almost every fight with a Spiral Shot. Exploding Shot and Blighting Shot are mostly here for longer battles against larger foes. You’ll also have to create or buy the arrows, so it’s not worth using these skills on smaller foes.

Our goal is to consistently harass and damage foes as much as possible, applying our debilitations through Exploding Shot and Blighting Shot when needed. Our first three abilities allow us to down a foe quite well, so use them often. Heavenly Shot is here for when our foe is downed. We can opt into continually casting Spiral Arrow if we want, but Heavenly Shot is massive and very satisfying.

There’s also a case for Drenching Shot, replacing either Exploding Shot or Blighted Shot. This thing is incredible at CCing large foes. Drenching a target, and then dealing freezing damage will instantly freeze body parts and just completely stop anything, even Dragons

Weapon Skills

There are a lot of skills on the Archer, and many of them are honestly not that great, so I’ll attempt to be brief here.

Barrage Shot (Manifold Shot)

Barrage Shot is great early. It’s something that you use a lot of the early game.

Sweep Shot (Cascade Shot)

It’s okay, but it doesn’t really do much later. There might be potential in using it like a shotgun, but I’m playing an Archer.

Dire Arrow (Deathly Arrow)

It does decent damage and has a long wind-up time. I’m not a fan, but I get why people use it. It’s likely one of the highest-damaging skills in the Archers’ kit.

Keen Sight (Lyncean Sight)

Seems like it’s a skill you pair with our augment Ambuscade. It just lacks in damage and honestly just isn’t necessary.

Exploding Shot (Erupting Shot)

Exploding Shot is excellent; it does significant damage. You can stack them, and they have a high chance of enflaming targets for some burn damage. It’ll also ground Griffons.

Tarring Shot (Incendiary Shot)

There are many ways to enflame foes. Exploding Shot will eventually do it. Whirling Arrow with a Fire Boon will also inevitably do it. It’s rumored that ailment arrows will boost the damage of their respective element type. For example, tarring will increase the damage caused by Exploding Shots and other fire-based skills. I don’t know if this is true, but it’s worth noting.

Torrent Shot (Tempest Shot)

The skill does decent damage, and if you can repeatedly hit a weak spot, you can deal quite a bit of damage. It locks you in place, though. It’s similar to Deathly Shot and similar in power.

Drenching Shot (Deluging Shot)

This Arrow is deceptively overpowered. If you have someway to freeze targets, you can drench a foe and then almost immediately freeze them as they’re already Drenched. This works on everything, even Dragons. Again, it’s assumed that it increases Lightning based skills.

Whirling Arrow (Spiral Arrow)

I think this is Archer’s bread-and-butter skill. It continuously hits, pushes certain foes back, breaks blocks, and can knock opponents off balance. Firing a barrage of these at something will apply the ailment of any boon you have cast on you and still does excellent damage. All while allowing you to remain mobile.

Blighting Shot (Nocuous Shot)

This is another Arrow on a similar level to the Exploding Shot. It’s great and does solid damage over time as well. Hitting a target with one of these early can allow damage to tick throughout a fight. When the Fulmination Poison activates with a 2nd arrow, it appears to have a high chance of downing targets and procing the poison for more damage.

Heavenly Shot

For a Maister skill, this is a bit of a joke compared with other Maister skills. It’s a satisfying Arrow to fire, though and is basically a better Deathly Arrow. That said, I believe it’s balanced and that other Maister skills need to be heavily tuned down to align with Heavenly Shot.


  • Ambuscade: Increase damage dealt by your attacks when targets are not in battle.
    • Sources suggest it increases damage by roughly 10%. That’s only for the first hit; after that, there’s no bonus. There are better Augments, and I could see a case for some massive first-hit damage with Keen Sight.
  • Endurance: Increase your maximum stamina by 150.
    • It is a decent increase; stamina is everything in Dragon’s Dogma, so having more helps.
  • Radiance: Causes your lantern to consume less oil and illuminate a wider area.
    • I used it sometimes. It’s definitely a preference; nothing crazy, but if you have an unusually dark screen like I do, it can make things a lot brighter.
  • Lethality: Increase damage when striking a target’s vitals by 5%
    • The damage increase vs vitals is assumed to be around 5%; people speculate that because you do 2x on vitals, this bonus is, in fact, 10%, but there’s been no thorough testing.
  • Avidity: Enables you to clamber up cliffs and scale foes and other surfaces more quickly. 10%
    • Another Augment you should decide on based on preference. I like moving faster, so I like Augments like this.

Archer DD Equiped Weapons

In Conclusion

The Archer does okay in the early game, but I recommend another vocation to start off, primarily Thief as it has some Augments you want. You can tell that it does significantly less damage than other vocations and heavily relies on having a weapon with high damage. Rushing to the Elf area for an early bow is a viable strategy.

Once you’ve gained access to a few skills and a bow, the Archer starts to shine and is quite powerful in the end game. It can take down creatures most other vocations can with relative ease. I enjoy playing the Archer skills on a Wayfarer, pairing them up with Augural Flare.

If you found this article interesting, why not check out our Wayfarer build here.