Rath 'Not A Vampire' Guide

Hey guys, I’m relatively new to the Battleborn forums so thought I’d make myself known.

I plan to be heavily involved in the community from now onwards, so I hope you don’t mind having me :grinning:.

For the time being, all I can do is produce theory crafts and guides for you all. In the future, who knows what I’ll be doing with Battleborn.

This is my first guide ever, exciting stuff right?
Since this is my first I would greatly appreciate any feedback, negative or positive so I can improve for my next.


#[size=40]Rath ‘Not A Vampire’ Guide[/size]
Please note that this guide is PvP focused.


Rath is a high mobility, low health melee character focused on, well, killing things… quickly. His ability set provides him with a large amount of single target damage. That being said, all of his abilities can hit multiple targets, meaning he also has very good waveclear.

#[size=30]Strengths and Weaknesses:[/size]
#Rath’s strengths

  • Provides good frequent waveclear
  • High single target burst.
  • High mobility and ‘sticking’ power
  • Self-healing from his Genetic Syphon passive

#Rath’s weaknesses

  • Short range
  • Has to endanger himself by getting close to targets to deal damage
  • Low Health, making him more susceptible to being burst down and killed.

#[size=30]Ability Overview:[/size]

Rath Throws energy Blades forward a limited distance, dealing 208-280 damage.

A line projectile, used for waveclear and single target burst. This has a base cooldown of 10 seconds, which can be reduced to 8 seconds via the Tier 8 Helix point Quick Cross. Crossblade is one of your core abilities alongside Catalytic Smash.

#Catalytic Smash

Rath unleashes a shockwave dealing 139-187 damage directly ahead.

A forwards shockwave, used for waveclear and single target burst. Catalytic Smash also blinds enemies hit by it when combined with the Tier 4 Helix point Catalytic Smash. This is arguably Rath’s most important ability, useable on a 10 second cooldown. An AOE blind every 10 seconds? Sounds great.

Rath spins into a whirlwind attack for 4 seconds, causing 41-68 damage per hit to enemies around him.

This ability is AAAmazing for clearing large groups of minions, you will literally slice through them. A very solid wave clear ability. When combined with Dreadheat, the tier 10 Helix point, Dreadwind provides a movement speed boost, helping you catch up your enemies that are really hitting the gym.

#[size=30]Passive Abilities:[/size]

#Axiom and Order


Rath’s primary melee attack can be chained multiple times for a quick combo. Rath’s secondary melee attack conjures a powerful lightning bolt.

This provides Rath with a large amount of burst damage, available from melee attacks alone. This synergises extremely well with your burst combo of Catalytic Smash into Crossblade.

#Genetic Syphon


When Rath damages an enemy’s health he steals health worth 10% of the damage from melee attacks and 10% of the damage from skill attacks.

Genetic Syphon provides Rath with more survivability, allowing him to heal himself as he cuts apart his opponents. This is a very beneficial passive for a low health, high damage melee character.

#Your opening combo for single targets

Open with Catalytic Smash to lay down a form of CC (Crowd Control). This then makes it easier to hit your crossblade. Following this, chain multiple melee attacks together for increased burst. This can be followed by another chain of melee attacks or, if needed, spin them down with Dreadwind.

#[size=30]Helix Points:[/size]

#Tier 1: Phasing Blades

[size=18 ]Phasing Blades[/size]

Phasing Blades makes your CrossBlade pass through enemies, allowing you to hit multiple minions. This improves your wave clear. This also synergises extremely well with Parabolic Blade in Tier 2. The combination of the two will give you great wave clear which is off cooldown frequently by level 2.

[size=18 ]Waveform Smash[/size]

More often than not minions will be relatively close together, making the straight line wave clear just as effective. Shortening the range on Catalytic Smash can gimp you later on when trying to land your blind on high mobility enemy characters. For large groups of enemies which are close together, Dreadwind is more than enough.

#Tier 2: Parabolic Blade

[size=18 ]Shield Syphon[/size]

Shield Syphon provides you with greater survivability. It also has nice synergy with the tier 7 pickup of Evasive Manoeuvres which gives you insane sticking potential. This is discussed more thoroughly in the Synergetic Combos section.

However, there are certain issues with this Helix point. Only certain minions have shields. Enemy characters sometimes have their shields broken. This only benefits you when you hit shielded targets with Parabolic blade.
Overall, this ability seems a bit too situational to pick over Parabolic Blade which almost always provides some benefit.

Other issues are discussed at length in the Synergetic Combo section at the bottom of the guide.

[size=18 ]Parabolic Blade[/size]

Parabolic Blade improves your wave clear greatly, allowing you to hit groups with two CrossBlades instead of one. It synergises very well with the Tier 9 Softened Target which gives a 35% damage buff to your CrossBlade for 4 seconds. Softened Target + Parabolic Blade gives you insane burst if you’re able to hit both CrossBlades on an enemy character.

[size=18 ]?Unknowns?[/size]

We don’t currently know if the second CrossBlade comes back fast enough to utilise the +35% damage 4 second window of the Tier 9 Softened Target. We don’t know how easily avoided the returning Crossblade is.
#Tier 3: Spin to Win

[size=18 ]Terror From Above [/size]

Double jump is mainly a dodging mechanism against enemy characters. For a low health, high damage character, this will prove is quite useful. I mean, the best way to not die, is to not get hit. So why didn’t I choose Terror From Above then? Because….damage. But not just because… damage. Basically there are various unknowns currently (see below).

[size=18 ]Spin to Win[/size]

Spin To Win provides you with more burst damage from your melee attack combo. Everyone loves more damage right? This helix point helps to burst down enemy characters faster and deal with those pesky enemy minions with a lot of health.

[size=18 ]?Unknowns?[/size]

Currently I don’t know how much time will be spent fighting enemy characters and how much time will be spent fighting enemy minions. Spin to win benefits you in both cases. Double jump is only really useful for dodging enemy abilities. Therefore, Spin to win.

If there is a game mode which resembles Mario Super Smash Bros with 10 people then double jump could be a better pickup (you get the idea).
#Tier 4: Catlytic Flash

Beginning to look a bit yellow in here…

[size=18 ]Crimson Fastness[/size]

Crimson Fastness seems decent; it’s basically a gap close. Gap closes are very beneficial for melee, low health, high burst characters. The gap close sets Rath up extremely well for a point blank combo onto his target of choice. The gap close is unfortunately quite short range, not a bad choice, but it pales in comparison to Catalytic Flash.

[size=18 ]Catalytic Flash[/size]

Catalytic Flash will be useful for blinding strong minions you are struggling with or waves which you are being overrun by. This will also really help with sticking to enemy characters and reducing their ability to retaliate to your attack. More so, a blinded enemy will find it harder to dodge your Crossblade, since they won’t see it coming.

[size=18 ]?Unknowns?[/size]

There are currently a large number of unknowns with the blind from Catalytic Flash. We don’t currently know how exactly it affects enemy characters or for how long the blind lasts. For enemy characters, does it make their screen go black, do their abilities ‘miss’, is it a type of mini stun? These will all affect the strength of the ability.

Although, if you check out my other post on the forums I have a speculation on the blind mechanic which could be correct. [No longer speculation] Footage of Blind Mechanic

#Tier 5: Skilful Syphoning

[size=18 ]Skilful Syphoning[/size]

Skilful Syphoning provides you with the potential for a lot more healing overall. This will buff the healing received by your Catalytic Smash into CrossBlade combo. This could prove deadly when combined with the blind from Tier 4 Catalytic Flash. Skilful Syphoning also helps if you’re very low health and need to heal up from range with your abilities. The buff could amount to substantial bonus healing if you’re hitting a group of 5+ enemy minions with your abilities. Think about a low health Dreadwind into a large group of enemy minions, doesn’t that just sound great.

[size=18 ]Not A Vampire[/size]

In a PvP (Player vs Player) situation – You will most likely open the fight with your abilities. And start taking damage after you have used them. Therefore, when you start taking health damage, it’s likely that your abilities are on cooldown. Not A Vampire provides more sustained and reliable healing since your melee attacks don’t have a cooldown. In order for this to be a worthwile pickup you have to stick to an enemy character and get off multiple melee attacks. This may prove quite difficult in practice. I could see this synergising quite well with Spin To Win.

[size=18 ]?Unknowns?[/size]

As mentioned above, in a 1v1 situation you will most likely open the fight with your abilities, on roughly full health thanks to your shield. I don’t currently know how long PvP encounters last. Will you or the enemy die before your abilities even come off cooldown? (10 second base cooldown on CrossBlade and Catalytic Smash) If this is the case then in a 1v1 situation Skilful Syphoning could provide almost no benefit. You open on a target with your health almost full, However, if they do come back off cooldown then it will definitely be the better choice overall.

#Tier 6: Brutal Blades

This choice may change once I have played the game.

[size=18 ]Brutal Blades[/size]

Brutal blades provides a +15% damage on your Crossblade. This synergises extremely well with the tier 9 Softened Target which gives +35% damage from Crossblade for 4 seconds on targets hit by Catalytic smash. This gives you a huge opening burst with your ability combination of Catalytic Smash into Crossblade.

[size=18 ]Catastrophic Smash[/size]

Catastrophic Smash increases the range of your Catalytic Smash. This synergises well with your blind and makes it easier to chase down and blind enemies who escape from you. Catastrophic Smash also increases the AOE (area of effect) Catalytic Smash has on groups of minions, which improves your wave clear and crowd management.

Overall, both good choices, but the increased single target burst from Brutal blades seems too good to pass up on.

#Tier 7: Evasive Manoeuvres

This could also change once I have played the game.
[size=18 ] Evasive Manoeuvres[/size]

I have picked Evasive Manoeuvres here for the sticking power when combined with your blind. The only downside is that movement speed isn’t that useful against minions.
[size=18 ]To The Point[/size]

I think To The Point is an ok pickup since you will be using melee strikes very frequently. By the end of the game this will add up to a decent damage increase. This will also help increase your single target burst, always nice. However, for killing enemy characters this isn’t as useful as the utility of Evasive Manoeuvres. I could easily be wrong about this in practice.

#Tier 8: Quick Cross

[size=18 ]Energetic Projection[/size]

You will most likely have ranged wave clear on your team making this unnecessary. Also, you have your blind and increased movement speed from Evasive manoeuvres. You shouldn’t struggle to stay within close proximity of your target. Increasing it’s range will increase the time it takes for the second CrossBlade from Parabolic Blade to hit the enemies on the return trip. This means Energetic Projection has poor synergy with the Tier 2 Parabolic Blade point.

[size=18 ]Quick Cross[/size]

Quick Cross seems like the better choice here, this reduces the cooldown on your Crossblade down to 8 seconds from 10 seconds. This is useful in sustained fights against enemy characters and provides you with a very low cooldown wave clear ability.

#Tier 9: Softened Target

[size=18 ]Softened Target[/size]

Softened Target seems amazing for assassinating enemy characters. Combined with Tier 4 Catalytic flash it provides you with a large opening burst of damage onto a blinded target. It also gives a substantial buff to your wave clear combination of Catalytic smash into Crossblade. This helps with both groups of enemies and large single target minions.
[size=18 ]Zealous Smash [/size]

This ability seems like it could be a good addition in a game mode focused on minion killing where wave clear is more important. Getting multiple kills with Catalytic Smash every 10 seconds could increase the uptime of DreadWind greatly. I could see this being a fine pickup for a PvE (Player vs Enemy) focused game mode. However, we don’t currently know by how much the cooldown on Dreadwind is reduced by for each kill with Catalytic Smash.

#Tier 10: Your Choice

[size=18 ]DreadHeart[/size]

Personally I think DreadHeart will prove useful as another sticking ability if your target somehow gets distance between you and them. This may also prove useful for clearing large groups of minions which require you to move in order to kill them all. DreadHeart is an option and should definitely be picked up if you find that Evasive Manoeuvres + Catalytic Flash don’t provide enough sticking power.

[size=18 ]Desperate Assault[/size]

I may be single but I’m not Desperate…

I would take this if you feel you have enough sticking power with the combination of Evasive manoeuvres and Catalytic Flash. Desperate assault helps to clear large groups of minions and provides extra damage on enemy players. Since you are a melee character your shield will be broken often, if used correctly you will almost always have the +15% damage bonus.

#[size=30]Synergetic Combo (Theory Crafting):[/size]

[size=14 ]What’s this? A bonus section? I spoil you too much[/size]

[size=22]Tier 7 Evasive maneuvers + Tier 2 Shield Syphon[/size]

The combination of these provides you with amazing sticking ability since your shield will most likely break twice overall. Your shield is broken when trying to reach your target, giving you a +30% movement speed for 4 seconds to close the gap faster. Then you can refill your shield, which then breaks again. Giving you another 4 seconds of +30% movement speed to stick to your target.

The combination also provides you with an escape mechanic when your shield breaks for the second time. The double shield helps improve survivability and provides you with good utility which seems important on a low health, high damage character such as Rath.

[size=18 ]Assumptions: (this is where things fall apart slightly)[/size]

The cooldown on Evasive manoeuvres is very low or non-existent. The enemy you are attacking has a shield up for you to steal. You hit your Crossblade on them. Your shield has been fully depleted before hitting your CrossBlade. The enemy is ranged and fully depletes your shield before you even reach them.

Problems with the ideas above: You could end up replacing your 4 second buff 1 second in with another 4 second buff (assuming they don’t stack). You can miss your crossblade, rendering the combination useless.

In an ideal world, with this Helix point combination, you should open with your CrossBlade ability to steal the maximum amount of shield possible. However, opening with your Crossblade makes hitting the CrossBlade even harder.

The more I think about this the worse the combination seems. I would love to try it out in a game to see how practical the theory crafting is.

Let me know what you guys think in the comments.


When he told me ‘Im taking awhile to do all the formatting’ as to why he hadn’t uploaded this yet, this was not what I was expecting…

Teach me Senpai. The Master has become the Student.

1 Like

Don’t we all, don’t we all? Come on technical test and potential beta in the future!

And there’s still a typo on Tier 6 (Brutal Blades entered as Crimson Fastness), not to mention the garish blue and yellow alternating text (maybe go for block quotes, bold the choice, and keep the skills helix choices in the same order as the site instead of alternating based on choice (was confusing at first)?), aaahhh!!! :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

For real though, can tell lots of thought went into this build, almost makes me wanna try out Rath now.

Almost… :smiley:

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OH GOD NOT A TYPO! Don’t worry, I killed it. Thanks for pointing that out!

Also, thanks for the feedback, I completely agree!
I think I’ll go through and do that right now :slight_smile:



Did you use Crossblade, Smash, or Dreadwind? And how much health did you regain?

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Funny that the first thing i thought when i looked at my friends screen next to me was: “a Vladimir with swords? Yep. He lifesteal.”