Unlike most other battleborn, Phoebe’s helix is overflowing with powerful helix options, so much so that any random build can be effective. However, many of her helixes have complicated interactions with each other, often with spectacular results. Therefore, I’m making this helix guide to help other players unleash Phoebe’s full potential.
The effectiveness of each helix will be rated on the following scale:
Terrible - These helixes will do more harm than good, and should be avoided by everyone.
Insignificant - These helixes are not very useful in normal play and are not worth focusing on.
Helpful - These helixes are useful in normal play, but are not worth focusing on.
Strong - These helixes are effective enough to be worth changing your playstyle for.
Game-changer - These helixes are excessively strong and will often have a big impact on the course of the game.
Obvious Choice - These helixes are clearly superior to any other options at that level.
Note that many helixes are situational, so a higher rated helix is not always the best choice.
Exiting Phasegate increases your movement speed by 30% for 3 seconds. This is extended to 9 seconds with level 8 helix Phase Stability.
On its own, this is good for closing gaps or escaping. With Phase Stability, this becomes an amazing movement ability, so long as you’re willing to wait 7 levels for the full duration.
While Aggressive Advance is active, Phoebe will leave a faint trail behind her as she moves, and sound effects similar to Marquis’s Temporal Distortion can sometimes be heard.
Stacks with the movement speed boost from Swordstorm.
Does not apply to True Strike’s lunge.
Enemies hit by Blade Rush will be marked for 3 seconds. Striking a marked enemy with Five Virtues will remove the mark and silence that enemy for 3 seconds.
Most enemy battleborn need their skills to win a fight against Phoebe, so Preparation is incredibly valuable in pvp, and 3 seconds can seem like an eternity with Phoebe’s DPS. Against AI enemies, silence is often treated as a stun, making this highly valuable even in pve.
Marked enemies will be surrounded by a blue visual effect.
Phoebe’s shields immediately begin recharging after using Phasegate.
On its own, this is useful for survivability, but won’t have a huge effect. Works well with Shield Stabilizers and Contingency Plan.
Upon exiting Phasegate, Phase Distortion creates a bubble at Phasegate’s target location. Enemies within the bubble are slowed. This bubble lasts 6 seconds, or 12 seconds with Phase Stability.
This is great for blocking an enemy’s escape or preventing someone from chasing you.
Increases Phoebe’s maximum shield capacity by 240 and shield recharge rate by 105/s.
This is a good boost to survivability and works well with Phoebe’s other shield and defensive helixes.
Striking an enemy or object with the last hit of Five Virtues’ 4-hit combo charges Phoebe’s rapier for 3 seconds. While charged, True Strike will deal 2.5x damage. Striking an enemy or object with True Strike will consume the charge, but this only applies to True Strike’s second attack if Blade Sweep or Reprise are active.
On its own, this is a strong boost to Phoebe’s already high DPS. With Blade Sweep or Reprise, Crosscut becomes an incredible DPS boost, greatly increasing Phoebe’s effectiveness as an assassin.
On a normal 5-hit combo, Crosscut will increase DPS by about 22%.
On a Blade Sweep or Reprise 4-hit combo, Crosscut will increase DPS by over 65%.
While Crosscut is active, Phoebe’s rapier will glow orange.
All attacks made with Five Virtues, True Strike, or quick melee deal +18% damage.
While not as strong as Crosscut, this is still a great DPS increase for anyone who doesn’t want to rely on True Strike to deal damage.
When attacking, Phoebe now glows yellow instead of blue.
Blade Rush blades now explode on contact, dealing full damage to all nearby enemies. However, these blades travel at half the normal speed, and can no longer crit or penetrate enemies.
This is great for dealing with hard to hit enemies, dealing damage to groups of enemies, or spreading debuffs from Preparation and Disruptor Blades.
The reduced speed of Unintended Innovation doubles the flight time effect of Close-Quarters Training and Refined Technique for a given distance.
Every time Blade Rush deals damage to an enemy, 1 to 2 seconds are refunded from Blade Rush’s cooldown. The more elite the enemy, the more time is refunded.
Normally, this results in large reductions if you can land your shots. In pve, this can fully refund the cooldown, especially when cooldown buffs are active.
Striking an enemy or object with True Strike increases Phoebe’s damage reduction by 30% for 3 seconds.
This is a 42% boost to Phoebe’s effective hp that is easy to keep active, making this an amazing defensive helix.
While active, Phoebe’s rapier will glow blue and an orange visual effect will appear at the bottom of Phoebe’s screen.
True Strike now chains a second attack after the lunge, dealing 50% increased damage in a 360 degree area around Phoebe. This new attack is boosted by Crosscut, and Crosscut’s deactivation will only apply to the second attack. Blade Sweep also unlocks a new melee combo, replacing the first two attacks in the base 4-combo with True Strike’s two attacks.
On its own, this is a moderate DPS boost with a strong AoE attack and a new, faster combo for more frequent True Strike lunges, all of which are good. With Crosscut, this also becomes an amazing DPS boost, allowing Phoebe to clear waves and deal high single target DPS at the same time.
Attack speed gear has a reduced effect on Blade Sweep’s combo.
Flurry has no positive effect on Blade Sweep’s combo.
Blade Sweep’s combo will add an extra hit if too much attack speed is stacked, reducing DPS.
True Strike now chains a second attack after the lunge, dealing 40% increased damage. This new attack is boosted by Crosscut, and Crosscut’s deactivation will only apply to the second attack. Reprise also unlocks a new melee combo, replacing the first two attacks in the base 4-combo with True Strike’s two attacks.
On its own, this is a moderate DPS increase, which becomes amazing when combined with Crosscut. However, Blade Sweep does the same thing with more damage, a larger AoE, and a faster combo, so there’s no reason to use Reprise over Blade Sweep.
Flurry’s effect is greatly reduced on Reprise’s combo.
Attack speed gear has a reduced effect on Reprise’s combo.
Reprise’s combo will add an extra hit if too much attack speed is stacked, reducing DPS.
Phasegate’s cooldown time is reduced by 20%.
This is a simple buff, allowing for slightly more frequent Phasegate usage without having a very large effect.
When Phoebe’s shield is broken, Phasegate’s cooldown is immediately reset. Phoebe’s shield must fully recharge between activations.
This allows Phoebe to both enter and exit a fight with Phasegate, allowing her to strike freely behind enemy lines in pvp or escape bad situations in pve.
If Contingency Plan activates while aiming Phasegate, the skill will be canceled.
If Contingency Plan activates while casting Phasegate, the skill will be canceled and can go into a full cooldown cycle.
All enemies hit by Blade Rush are wounded for 3 seconds, reducing all healing received by 60%.
This is great if your enemies are healing themselves in combat. Otherwise, this will have no effect.
Increases the damage of Phasegate, Blade Rush, and Blade Cascade by 15%.
The boost to Blade Cascade is great, the other skills not so much.
Additive with the damage boost from Phase Stability.
Increases the attack speed of Five Virtues by 20%. Does not apply to True Strike.
This is a great DPS increase if you’re using Passata Sotto or are ignoring True Strike. If you took Blade Sweep or Reprise, Flurry will be much less useful.
Boosts the DPS of a base 5-combo by 15%, and Reprise’s combo by about 7%.
Does not boost Blade Sweep’s combo.
Increases Phasegate’s maximum range by 33%.
Unless you’re trying to get somewhere just out of reach, this won’t have much of an effect.
Increases Phasegate’s damage by 15% and extends the duration of Aggressive Advance and Phase Distortion by 6 seconds.
The damage boost won’t make a big difference, but the extended duration is a great boost for the affected helixes.
Phase Stability’s damage boost is additive with Core Overload.
Adds 3% of your current shield to the damage of each Blade Rush blade.
This can be decent if you stack shield capacity, but only if you can keep that shield active. In general, the other options on this level are more useful.
The Conduit’s bonus damage is boosted by Core Overload and skill damage gear.
Blade Rush’s damage is increased by 40%, but this damage boost is reduced by 10% every 1/3 second while the blades are in flight. This becomes a damage penalty after 1.67 seconds.
At close range, this is a great damage boost. At long range, this will actually reduce your damage, especially with Unintended Innovation.
While in flight, Blade Rush blades gain 25% damage every 1/4 second.
This won’t do much at close range, but makes for a good damage boost at medium range. At long range, this can deal massive amounts of damage, especially with Unintended Innovation.
Refined Technique can boost Blade Rush’s damage by about 375% before the blades expire.
Enemies within Blade Cascade’s area of effect take 8% increased damage from all sources.
This is good for maximizing your DPS, but the damage increase is too small to make a big difference.
Blade Cascade’s area of effect travels with Phoebe, but deals only 40% of its normal damage.
The damage penalty from this outweighs any benefit from bringing Blade Cascade with you, so most players should avoid this helix.
Blade Cascade’s normal visuals are replaced by a sword rotating around Phoebe.
Blade Cascade’s radius is increased by 50%. While Phoebe is inside Blade Cascade, her movement speed is increased by 30%, lasting for 3 seconds after she leaves the AoE.
The increased AoE is great for damaging larger groups of enemies, and the movement speed is useful for chasing enemies or escaping a dangerous area.
Movement speed boost stacks with Aggressive Advance.
Movement speed boost does not apply to True Strike’s lunge.
If you have any questions about Phoebe’s helix, or if there’s anything that I missed or that you disagree with, feel free to comment below.