Ultimate Samurai Sin Guide by Goeido


The Samurai Sin, an Assassin using 2h melee weapons, is one of the most popular builds in ES, and there is a reason for this popularity. She is one of the strongest bosskillers, a very tough but at the same time very flexible char with a high killspeed against mid-sized groups and bosses. This guide shows my preferred variant with ideal endgame equip, there might be other ones but this one works best for me.

  • page in progress-


All points in Str - to get the maximum damage out of the melee attacks. Its necessary to get a decent amount of dexterity from the equipment to be able to wear a Katana.



  • Dragon Blade: 25 - main attack skill
  • Iaigiri: 20 - secondary attack skill vs unbreakable physical immunes (possessed)
  • Blade Sentinel: 1+ - very good damage skill against mid-sized groups, based on weapon damage. Synergizes Dragon Blade. Excess hardpoints can be invested here, but it would take a high clvl and many staffmod items to have any.
  • Blade Shield: 28 - synergizes Dragon Blade and Blade Sentinel (up to 12 sentinels)
  • Dragon Flight: 1 - important for mobility and collecting summons. Dragon Talon prereq helps Shadow Masters
  • Melee Mastery: 1 - one-point wonder
  • Shade Armor and prereqs: 1 - Shade armor is the main reason for the Samurai Sins toughness, it also acts as 2h melee passive
  • Shadow Master: 1 - Shadow Masters are the summons that deal most damage. Since the main damage skills of this build dont require too many skill points, its best to get 2 Shadow Masters and get the skills they can use effectively to boost them
  • Summoning Mastery: 25 - to get 2 Shadow Masters
  • Poison Stream: 1 - increases the Shadow Master Venom damage, synergizes blade skills
  • Phoenix Strike: 1 - synergizes Iaigiri, increases Shadow Master damage
  • Elemental Charge-ups: 1 each - increase Shadow Master damage


Investing hardpoints or getting staffmods is always a question of equip quality. Veterans Odd Charm provides one free staffmod, jewelry can provide staffmods but the overall qualitiy is more important. Large charms can also have staffmods but take up inventory space.

  • Mind Blast: improve Shadow Master Mind Blast stun length, useless prereqs
  • Death Sentry: Nice corpse removal (though not really necessary with Summon Skeleton), many useless prereqs
  • Dragon Flight: save 3 hardpoints
  • any other one-point wonder that happens to be on good equip


  • Battle Orders - from weapon switch
  • Oak Sage - from belt, boots or jewelry
  • Fanatism - from gloves or jewelry, best in combination with Might Merc
  • Amplify Damage - from jewelry or circlet, immunity breaker or just double damage. Better radius and duration than Decrepify.
  • Revive - from Veterans Odd Charm, very strong summon oskill
  • Summon Skeleton - from belt, boots or jewelry, surprisingly strong with endgame equip, no timer


Items should be forged +1 all skills and socketed with life% forged +1 Assassin skill jewels or Assassin skill forged unique jewels if possible.

Main Slots

  • Weapon: Ethereal 2h weapon (Katana is nice, but any will do), either rare dualmax or an indestructible runeword.
    Dstone ed%
  • Armor: "Eternal Reign" in ethereal Ceremonial Armor - high defense, good skills, good resists
    Dstone defense%
  • Helm: rare circlet - take the best you can get
    Ruby meld
  • Jewelry: rares with lots of skills and oskills (Amplify Damage is a must, which leaves 2 potential oskill slots, Natural Resistance (for magic resist) and Dodge might be useful but are not as important as high skill bonuses)
    Dstone life%
  • Gloves: magic or rare with oskill Fanatism, 2 sockets, and ideally +3 martial arts.
    Obsidian meld
  • Belt: magic or rare with oskill Oak Sage or Summon Skeleton, 2 sockets, a rare might even have shielding (max resist all) on top
    Dstone +life
  • Boots: magic(!) with oskill Oak Sage or Summon Skeleton
    Ruby meld, secret recipe 18 for faster run/walk - 9 dstones for 10% faster run seems expensive, but is actually cheap compared to mapling faster run.


  • All unique charms, socketed +1 all skills jewels if possible, forged assassin skills.
  • "Captive" runeword odd charm
  • Shadow skills grand charms or socketed magic charms

Weapon switch

  • Oskill Battle Orders javelin
  • Skill shield

Merc and Merc Equipment

Act2 Nightmare Might merc

The Might mercs biggest advantage is that he can provide all summons with a good amount of crushing blow by synergizing Annihilation aura. The damage increase from Might is just a bonus.

  • LoD "Pride" runeword Weapon (Dragons Breath spear or "Dog" runeword will do)
  • "Fox" runeword armor - cbf, damage reduction and cold absorb for the char, the merc and all summons
  • nice circlet with (Salvation) aura and resists
  • Annihilation forged amulet
  • 2x Zodiac Band
  • Greiz Legion gloves
  • "Navel" runeword belt - a nice combination with damage reduction and ctc Battle Commands
  • Hermes Gift boots


In Town

  • Prebuff Shade Armor, Venom, and Blade Shield
  • Summon Shadow Masters and Oak Sage


  • Cast Amplify Damage on tougher groups/bosses
  • For bigger groups, cast some Blade Sentinels
  • Jump in with Dragon Flight
  • Dragon Blade until nothing moves
  • Turn corpses into Skellies and Revives

Tips and tricks

  • Against Baals Minions, the Ancients and Seal Bosses, cast a field of Blade Sentinels just before the spawn. After the spawn, instantly cast Amplify Damage
  • Possessed natural physical immunes (clay golems, ghosts, swarms) cannot be cursed with amplify damage. Use magic damage from Iaigiri to bring them down quickly


I usually have my left hand on a typing position over ASDF.

  • Left mouse button: Dragon Blade(A)-Blade Sentinel(S)-Dragonflight(X)-Iaigiri
  • Right mouse button: Fanatism(F)-Amplify Damage(D)-Summons and Buffs (QWERTYU)
  • Stand: (for casting blade sentinels): G
  • Run: V
  • Show items: Space
  • Weapon switch: Z (on English keyboard), Battle Orders on right mouse button

Starting out untwinked

  • set odd charm for Dragon Claw, put first skill point into Melee Mastery, get Burst of Speed at lvl 6. First gems and gold should go into 2 socket gemword gloves
  • get Death set and Autolycos belt and boots, make shadow skill tab jewelry
  • put 25 skillpoints into Summoning Mastery to get 2 Shadow Masters as soon as possible
  • as soon as 2 Shadow Masters are available, hit the special areas. Level up and get Motokos set. When the sword is based up to Wakizashi, Motokos is fine until end of Nightmare. Other slots: craft rings, "Royality" runeword helm, Goldarks Strap, LoD Chanceguards, craft boots
  • at the end of Nightmare, use the unique/set base up trick to make Tasslehoffs set and Heart of Jewels diadem. Gamble and reroll a non-ethereal Katana to decent mods. Go to hell and look for purples and ethereals...


  • MN4dac http://www.LnAJ7K8QSpkiStk3sLL0hQP6MO2wQ8gO.com -- Barnypok? 03-31-2017 (Fri) 23:23:28
  • Really no vitality? How to survive as melee..? Even ranged builds needs vitality at least a few, no? -- husten? 10-07-2016 (Fri) 09:58:47
  • By Dog He meant Hound Runeword,putting 1 Hard Point in every skill the Master/Warrior uses pays off big time... -- Lucifer666? 06-03-2012 (Sun) 19:10:09
  • Does having elemental charge-ups increase Shadow Master damage? I have found no info regarding this anywhere. -- Keshikomu? 06-03-2012 (Sun) 10:24:49
  • phfffffffffffffffffffffffffffff phf... -- Fart Pedo? 02-22-2012 (Wed) 17:09:40
  • whats with "dog" runeword cant find it. Is it a type error you did or am i missing something? -- Xc0n? 08-06-2011 (Sat) 11:52:57
  • After doing some testing, I included several of nameless' tips. Dragon Blade became mainskill, Iaigiri cut down to 20, Shadow Master to 1 hardpoint. -- goeido 03-24-2010 (Wed) 09:23:47
  • Thanks for comments, Nameless. Str adds more damage since most 2h weapons get 1% damage per point in str. The Shadow Masters traps dont do nearly enough damage to be worth the investment in skills. Iaigiri over Dragon Blade is my personal preference, maybe because of pre-R6 days, but im actually using both. On paper, skillpoints in Iaigiri look better because the difference between hard points and synergy points is much higher for Iaigiri. Next time Im playing Ill check the exact numbers but I somehow thought its better to invest in Dragon Blade synergy than in Dragon Blade itself. edit: 1 point in Iaigiri: 25% ed Iaigiri 7% ed Dragonblade. Other way round: 10%/12%. -- goeido 03-22-2010 (Mon) 12:29:32
  • The hard-point bonus of Str and Dex are the same. Putting some points into Dex will make it easier to meet gear requirements without really hurting you. I don't see much point in maxing Shadow Master. Making sure you have at least 1 pt (or a staffmod) in EVERY skill she uses is more important. Get ALL Traps skills and the elemental chargeups. If you respec later, you can remove skills that you get from staffmods, otherwise I would rather spend 1 pt than use a crappy item just to get a staffmod. With all the auras, Dragon Blade is a much better skill than Iaiagiri. I would put 20 pts into Iaiagiri (for the magic damage) and the rest into DBlade and use Iaiagiri only for PI monsters or in special situations. -- Nameless? 03-22-2010 (Mon) 11:11:55

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Last-modified: 03-31-2017 (Fri) 23:23:28 (1057d)