Alright, we’re back on time with another update from the wide world of TERA. This time, it’ll be a look at the armed and armored Berserker class, and what these rampaging lunatics bring to the table.

Role: Damage
Difficulty: [***]

The Berserker is the literal be-all, end-all for heavy damage. The class is a literal tank, being outfitted with the heaviest armor and crushing enemies with some of the highest damage-per-hits in the game. The major downside however… they’re slow. Super slow. Unlike all the other damage classes, Berserkers also have a block skill, instead of a dodge. Their block value is far below what a Lancer could take, but for a party of friends and a threat crystal, a Berserker could manage to be an alright tank. However, their main role is damage, and that is where they shine. Unlike Slayers, Berserker attacks are more constrained to a small cone in front of the player, but the majority of skills can massive area of effect components too them, making the Berserker a great choice for anyone who wants to feel like a rampaging lunatic.

Berserkers start the game off with all the skills you’ll ever need to pummel anything into the ground. Their basic attack, and the lovely block that keeps the trees from punching you in the face. At level two, you learn one of the most fun abilities the class will ever get. Hold the button to charge the skill, release once it’s charged to spin your massive axe and kill everything around you. A little later on comes the more “single”-target version of this, causing your character to do an overhead flip and slam the axe into the ground. Much smaller effect area, but a little higher damage to compensate. All of the skills chain together well, however you may notice a lag in activation similar to that with the Slayer. The difference is, the Berserker feels like a meaty, slow-moving/hard-hitting class, so the lag is less noticeable, even to the point of feeling like it is class flavor.

Combat as a Berserker is extremely satisfying, so long as you can stand the playstyle. Once combat begins, it can feel as though a Berserker loses half of their default movement speed. But really, can you blame them? It’d be hard to walk with that giant thing out and not trip and fall. All of their basic attacks and skill animations lend an extremely meaty, crushing feeling to each swing, giving the class an incredibly violent and visceral feeling once combat starts. While the slow movement speed is a pain for getting to the next pull (“combat” status persists a couple of seconds after something dies at times), in combat it doesn’t slow you down much, but it does mean a Berserker should always be aware that escape is not an option. There is only Forward to a Berserker, retreat does not exist. To stall is to die. To move forward is to crush your foes.

For crystals, a similar strategy to  Slayer will do wonders. Grabbing bonus damage on knocked-down targets is great for solo play, since Berserkers also have a habit (and fairly low skill cooldowns) of knocking things over in combat. If you’re looking for party-play, grab some bonus damage for attacking from behind, unless you are the groups tank. I would not recommend actually trying to tank things like dungeons or BAMs, but if you are playing with an understanding group of friends, you can socket in a threat crystal and do pretty decently at it. For armor, above all else I’d recommend health regeneration. Like Lancers, a Berserker can easily “turtle-up” behind their block and heal up if need be. It’s slow, but a constant force, much like the Berserker class itself.

Compared to the other melee damage, Berserker can either be the most frustrating thing ever or have the player squeal in murderous rampage. The slow movement will really bite on fights that require a lot of positioning, but if you’re allowed to sit there and hammer away, there won’t be much of a boss left before long. If you liked playing the Lancer, but really want something that can dish out damage instead of tank it, give the Berserker a try. A good Berserker is valued at any point in the game for the raw damage they bring, along with their strong innate survivability that comes with the block portion of their axe. However, dealing with BAMs solo might cause a problem, because their attacks are slow coupled with the fact that, like Slayers, Berserkers naturally gravitate towards zero mana. Generating mana can be a pain, but if you can find the rhythm to the attack-defend game, then you should be alright.

Next week we’ll be starting in to the ranged classes, with the Archer!