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Sith Warrior Beginner’s Guide - Star Wars The Old Republic

Learn everything you need to know about getting up and running quickly with the Sith Warrior.

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The Sith Warrior - An Overview

Nothing can stand in your way. You represent the Sith. Even the bravest of soldiers cower in fear before a Sith Warrior. Your lightsaber is more than a weapon-- it's a symbol of power. With your lightsaber, you wield the power to change history itself. The Force is yours to command as you charge into battle. With great power comes great responsibility. A Sith Warrior's responsibilities begin on Korriban, and that is where we'll begin today.

Progression trailer shows you some options on how you can customize your Sith Warrior according to advance class choices

As you read this Star Wars: The Old Republic (SWTOR) beginner's guide designed for Sith Warriors, there are a couple of things to remember. First of all, this guide is meant as a basic aid to help you get through the first planet. Information will be specific to the Sith Warrior class. I'll explain terminology, but will assume that you have a basic handle on most of the game's controls. I'll also assume that you haven't played through the Sith Warrior's storyline yet, so I won't discuss spoilers.

Step One: Choosing an Alignment

Before going too far into the story on Korriban, every aspiring Sith Warrior should decide where they stand when it comes to their alignment with the Force. Your overall alignment is based on decisions made during story conversations, so having a general idea of whether the Light or Dark Side consumes your hatred is recommended.

You have three options. You can let fate decide as you play the game without having a predisposed inclination. This can lead to an immersive story experience, but it can also cause your alignment to be balanced between Light Side and Dark Side. This may cause issues later since players gain access to special gear after reaching certain ranks of pure alignments (Light I, II, etc.). The ranks aren't required, however, nor is the extra gear, but it's something to consider.

The other options involve delving into the pure alignments. Sith Warriors, characteristically, are servants of the Dark Side. Passion rules their domination across the galaxy and chaos leads them into battle where they are often unmatched. Darth Vader is the iconic Dark Sith Warrior, and like Vader, if you follow the Dark Side you will cause everyone to fear you. There is, however, another option. Ever wanted to go against the grain and try to break free of the emotion-ridden shackles that bind other Sith? Light Side Sith Warriors keep their emotions in check and aren't afraid to fight in order to create their own destiny.

Step Two: Starting to Think About Advance Class Choices

All Sith Warriors rely on brute strength and skill in melee (close range) combat. After finishing up on Korriban, you will have to decide between the two Sith Warrior advanced classes: Juggernaut and Marauder. Both choices allow the Sith Warrior to leap around the battlefield, slicing enemies into two with a lightsaber, but the styles vary considerably.

Juggernauts wear heavy armor, wield a single one-handed lightsaber and have the option to become a tank. Tanks focus on survivability and protect their group by controlling the battlefield and ensuring enemies attack them instead of their teammates. Juggernauts can also deal solid melee DPS (damage per second) to enemies. Marauders, on the other hand, wear medium armor, are able to dual wield two lightsabers and pride themselves in being able to dispatch enemies as quickly as possible. They are also a little more versatile when it comes to dealing straight damage.

Excellent video explaining what a tank is and how to focus your Sith Warrior on becoming a strong tanking power

If you're curious about tanking at all, Juggernaut is the obvious choice for aspiring Sith Warriors. If dual wielding and having multiple options when it comes to hacking and slashing is your cup of tea, Marauder may be the perfect advanced class. All Sith Warriors start out wearing medium armor on Korriban.

Step Three: Entering the Fray

One of the first steps in becoming a master Sith is mastering the art of lightsaber combat. It all begins at level 1. Let's start with Unnatural Might, which is the Sith Warrior's class buff. Each base class gets an important buff that they should keep up as often as possible. Unnatural Might lasts an hour and increases all types of damage and healing by 5%.

Also of importance is Shii-Cho Form. You'll get a few different Forms as you level and you can only keep one up at a time. Forms are toggle buffs, which means they will always be in effect once used, unless you remove them. For now, keep up Shii-Cho Form. If you have Sprint available (as Free-to-Play, it opens at level 15), also keep that up.

Walkthrough video that takes you through the first 30 minutes of Sith Warrior gameplay with commentary

You'll have two different attacks at leve1 1: Assault and Vicious Slash. These two attacks are a good introduction to Rage, which is the Sith Warrior resource mechanic. Certain attacks build Rage, such as Assault. Other attacks and abilities, like Vicious Slash, cost Rage. You start out with 0 Rage and will maximize it at 12, which means that during most fights you will have to both generate Rage and spend it. Rage sticks around after combat is finished, but it slowly dissipates over time. While in combat, Rage never dissipates unless you spend it.

These early levels are a perfect time to get a feeling for how much Rage you need to take down enemies. Once you get a hang of the Rage mechanic, Sith Warrior combat feels rather fluid. You won't often find yourself out of Rage unless you plan poorly and forget to use Rage generation abilities, but at the same time, you should aim to never go past maximum Rage, because that essentially means you're wasting it.

Now, back to Assault and Vicious Slash. Let's say you enter combat with these two abilities and are at 0 Rage. The first thing you should do at level 1 is to run up to an enemy, ensure it's in range and hit Assault twice. After two Assaults, you'll find that Vicious Slash has lit up on your qucikbar. This means you have enough Rage to now use it. You can use Vicious Slash to finish off your first target or save it for the second target. Vicious Slash does more damage than Assault, so once you have Rage built up you'll find that killing comes easily.

I have one Korriban-specific tip for Sith Warriors. At level 2, you'll get the iconic Force Charge ability, which causes you to leap across rather large distances to get in range with an opponent. This helps you get into combat quicker, which will keep your Rage levels high. Force Charge is also a good Rage generator since it builds 3 Rage.

I would suggest grabbing Force Charge before doing the missions that take place inside the Tomb of Ajunta Pall. There's even a Sith Warrior trainer directly inside the entrance. The tough part? Grabbing enough Credits to purchase Force Charge. I would suggest killing a few enemies outside of the tomb before heading inside, then returning to the Imperial Medical Droid right by the ramp leading to the area where you first started. Vendor any grey items you received, and as long as you are level 2 and have 10 Credits, you can now train in Force Charge.

At this point it becomes easy to quickly dispatch a target with Force Charge and Vicious Slash. Getting rid of that first enemy fast makes melee combat a lot less dangerous, because the fewer enemies that are hitting you, the less damage you take. Speaking of taking damage, also make sure to use Channel Hatred in between battles if you notice you're getting low on heath. Channel Hatred is a channeled ability, which means it will keep healing you unless you use an ability, get attacked or move.

Learning Abilities

As you continue leveling on Korriban, you'll be able to purchase new abilities from Sith Warrior trainers at almost every new level. Besides the trainer at the beginning of Tomb of Ajunta Pall, there is another inside the Sith Academy, which is the main mission and vendor hub on Korriban. At level 3, you'll gain your first area-of-effect (AoE) ability called Smash. Smash costs 3 Rage and does damage to up to five enemies directly around you. It also stuns everything, which makes it incredibly useful for opening a fight. Using Smash directly after a Force Charge into a group is my favorite way of opening a fight, even at higher levels.

Your first defensive cooldown comes at level 4 and is called Saber Ward. Defensive cooldowns are abilities that you use when you know you might be in trouble. If your health starts dropping quickly, Saber Ward comes in handy since it reduces all damage you take for 12 seconds. If you accidentally anger too many enemies, that's another opportune time for Saber Ward. Melee characters like the Sith Warrior often live a little more dangerously since we get hit more often, so if you enjoy melee, remember to take advantage of defensive cooldowns.

Medpacs are also a Sith Warrior's best friend. Drag a stack from your inventory ("I") and place it on a quickbar. They can be used during combat and heal for a decent amount. They can be purchased from any Medical Droid.

At level 5, Sith Warriors get a reactive ability called Retaliation. Reactive abilities can only be used directly after certain combat conditions. In Retaliation's case, you must dodge or parry an attack (this happens naturally) before you can use it. When it's available, you'll be able to tell because the ability will light up on your quickbar. Retaliation is also off the global cooldown (often referred to as GCD), which means you can hit it while hitting another ability and both will fire off. Retaliation, in general, is more of a Juggernaut tank ability, but it still can be useful for an aspiring Marauder, especially during these early levels.

Force Scream is your next new ability which comes at level 6. Force Scream's Rage cost is fairly high (4), but it deals a solid amount of damage to one target. It also briefly stuns the enemy and has a slightly larger range than most melee abilities.

At level 8 you will get another high-damaging ability. This one is called Ravage and has a rather hefty cooldown (wait time) of 30 seconds. It has no Rage cost and must be channeled for 3 seconds. It's worth using, especially for tougher opponents, since it stuns. It also has a rather cool animation.

There are a few different difficulty tiers for enemies in SWTOR, and each are identifiable by the colored border that surrounds an enemy's portrait when it is targeted (selected by clicking). Monsters with fancy gold and silver borders are Champion mobs, can be extremely dangerous and will need a group to defeat. Bosses in Flashpoints, which is SWTOR's 4-man group content, and world bosses are of Champion difficulty. Elite enemies feature gold borders and are usually able to be taken out solo (alone) with a trusty Companion. Strong mobs have silver borders and more health than Standard enemies, which are easily dispatched and feature no special border.

Level 9 gives Sith Warriors Unleash. Unleash is an ability that lets you escape from a stun, blind or other such ailments. It will light up your quickbar if it's able to be used. At level 10 you will finish up on Korriban and explore the Imperial Fleet, which is where you should make your advanced class decision. Choosing Marauder or Juggernaut will give you new abilities and skill trees to try out. Your first Flashpoint will also open up at this point, as well as the ability to choose crew skills, which let you craft better gear and other useful items to help make Sith domination a simpler task.

General Combat

  • When fighting a group of enemies, use Smash every time it's available. After that, watch your Rage and use other abilities to concentrate on one enemy at a time.
  • Don't forget to use Stims, which can be purchased from Medical Droids. Stims increase a stat for an hour. Sith Warriors want Strength or Endurance Stims.
  • Be careful when Force Charging into a crowded area. If more than one group of enemies is close together, it might be better to run toward a group until they attack than leap in and risk grabbing both groups. Another option is to wait until the second group wanders away from the first.
  • The Sith Warrior has a solid arsenal of abilities that stun enemies (Ravage, Smash, Force Scream). Learn to use them often in order to help mitigate damage. Remember: If an enemy isn't hitting you, you're taking less overall damage.

Introducing Vette

At around level 9 on Korriban, you'll reach a point in the Sith Warrior storyline where you encounter Vette, your first Companion. Vette is a ranged damage dealer who will help you a great deal when it comes to quickly taking down enemies. She's important in the Sith Warrior's personal story and will try and make friends with you, which can turn out pretty interesting depending on how the Sith Warrior handles her talkative nature. For dialog options, she receives affection points when the Sith Warrior is clearly in command yet also compassionate. Depending on your alignment, this may or may not work in your favor, but fear not-- gifts will easily sway Vette.

Korriban's Heroic Missions

After recruiting Vette, it becomes much easier to try and solo the couple of Heroic missions on Korriban. Until this time, it's also possible to join a group forming up for them. I do suggest trying to solo them with Vette, however, because it's a great way to learn to utilize all of your abilities.

Even though Vette isn't a tank, she can survive for a surprising amount of time with an enemy attacking her. It's sometimes best to split the attention of mobs, especially during these Heroic missions, in order to lessen the overall damage you both take . To do this, send her into combat first by using the fist-shaped icon on her quickbar located in the lower left-hand side of your screen ("CTRL-1" also works).

Following that, Force Charge in, targeting a different enemy than the one she is focusing on. Concentrate on using any abilities that stun (Ravage, Force Scream) as well as Smash. By the time you take down a couple of enemies, Vette's should almost be dead. Finish off the fight and be sure to use Channel Hatred in between battles.

Credits, Gear and General Leveling Tips

Credits come easily in SWTOR. There are a few things you should prioritize when it comes to spending Credits on Korriban. Make sure to prioritize ability purchases from class trainers above everything else. Every ability has its use, and higher ranks mean that your abilities deal more damage. As a Sith Warrior, you also need to make sure you have a decent stock of Medpacs on-hand. We excel at taking damage, so always be prepared.

You'll also need to make sure you're upgrading your gear as you level. In most cases, mission reward items and green-quality armor drops off enemies will be sufficient for getting through Korriban. If you find yourself short in a particular gear slot, feel free to purchase a green-quality item off the medium armor vendor at the Sith Academy.

You should also keep an eye out for Planetary Commendations, which are obtained from completing the Heroic missions as well as randomly off enemies. Commendation gear is some of the best gear obtainable while leveling. Commendations are shared between all leveling planets, so it may be worthwhile to save them while on Korriban in order to pick something up that's a larger upgrade on Dromund Kaas. Alternatively, for eight Commendations, you can purchase a medium chestpiece that's quite decent.

It's possible to earn extra Credits while farming humanoid enemies on Korriban, but unless you find yourself extremely short on Credits, you shouldn't need to spend extra time farming. Make sure to sell all grey items, unwanted white gear and unwanted green-quality gear at this level.

As far as gear goes, concentrate on medium armor with Strength and Endurance for now. Strength increases your damage and Endurance increases how much damage you can take before you are defeated. Both help tremendously at these levels. Also be sure to upgrade your lightsaber whenever an upgrade makes itself available. Weapon upgrades make a large difference for Sith Warriors. Vette wears medium armor, but needs items with mostly Cunning. She also makes good use of dual blaster pistols.

There are a couple of options when it comes to choosing a leveling path in Star Wars: The Old Republic. Sticking to story missions whenever possible seems to be the most straightforward route, mainly since story missions also provide gear upgrades. When collecting missions, make sure to check the nearby area for other missions that open up. Group missions together whenever possible.

You can find datacrons and lore objects while exploring new areas on Korriban. Datacrons give permanent stat boosts, which can be very useful. The downside, however, is that some of them are off the beaten path. It's not a problem if you can't find them your first time on Korriban, since it's easy to return later.

As you level, you will start to collect complimentary experience boost items as part of rewards for missions. These grant you extra experience and help make your leveling journey a little quicker. Feel free to use them as soon as you get them or save them for whenever you feel like you're slipping behind the leveling curve. If you really want to think ahead, it may be a good idea to save them until you're around level 40 or higher, since the amount of experience needed for each level increases substantially.

Teamwork in SWTOR

Star Wars: The Old Republic is a game best played with friends. While it's possible to level solo, I'd suggest grouping up with others whenever possible for a couple of reasons. Due to the game's unique conversation and alignment system, it can be quite fun to complete missions with other players. It's also a good way to make friends and learn how to be an asset in a group. Flashpoints and Heroic missions are some of the game's most enjoyable content.

If there are three or more party members in the immediate area, you will find that you won't be able to summon all of your Companions. The game essentially considers Companions as players when it comes to groups. With three players, one Companion will be able to be summoned and will be chosen at random. With four players, all Companion summons become disabled.

In a group on Korriban, you will find yourself as a tank in most cases. This is expected since you're melee and wear heavier armor than Sith Inquisitors and thus take less damage. Sith Warriors also have some nice tricks up their sleeves as far as stuns and defensive cooldowns at this level. A few early pointers: Keep enemies grouped up if possible, use your stuns wisely (don't waste them on enemies that are almost dead) and watch your health and the health of your teammates. Teamwork is vital at any level in SWTOR, so always remember to be considerate and communicative.

Final Notes

The galaxy's like a blank slate-- free for your taking. Enjoy the leveling experience, because Star Wars: The Old Republic has one of the best MMORPG leveling experiences out there.

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