Written by Dantiko, Edited by Xam Xam

Last Updated – Gradually being updated for 6.1 (16th March).

A version of this Guide by the same author also appears here – https://vulkk.com/2020/03/10/swtor-6-0-annihilation-marauder-guide/


Annihilation Marauder is currently one of the best specs overall for Nightmare level content.  It has amazing raid utility, your survivability is unreal, and of course, ridiculous damage if managed correctly. Although this spec suffers from practically 0 burst damage, it is the highest overall single target damage spec for marauder.


Gearing and Stats

Set Bonus

306 Descent of the Fearless 6 Set + 1 Piece Amplified Champion Set

GEAR 2 SET 4 SET 6 SET
Descent of the Fearless Mastery +2% Whenever you gain or use a Furious Power ability charge while in combat, your damage is increased by 10% for 10 seconds Dealing damage has a 10% chance to build a Furious Power ability charge. Can only occur once every 5 seconds
GEAR EQUIP
Amplified Champion This equipment shell is enhanced with additional powerful Amplifier opportunies

Amplified Champion: +Additional Damage Amplifier


Amplifiers, Mods and Stats

Amplifiers

NAME DESCRIPTION PERCENTAGE MAX
Periodic Intensity
Increases the damage dealt by periodic effects
2.20%

9x Periodic Intensity Amplifiers @ 2.2% (gold tier) on Armorings/Hilts + 1 Amplified Champion Periodic Intensity Amplifier @ 0.88% (blue tier).

Stats

Optimizing this spec can be difficult due to the amount of specific enhancements and mods you need for the final build, but the most important thing is to have the correct stat distribution and adjust gear as you get what you need.

The stat distribution for Annihilation is as follows:

  • Accuracy: 1590
  • Alacrity: 1213
  • Crit: Whatever is left

It is better to run slightly over these numbers until you can sort your gear out to get the exact stats. The final build will consist of these pieces of gear and augments:

Modifications

  • Armorings: Superior Versatile Armoring 80 (x7)
  • Hilts: Superior Versatile Hilt 80 (x2)
  • Mods: Superior Lethal Mod 80R-2 (x9)

Stat Distribution (new augments):

  • Accuracy: Superior Initiative Enhancement 80R-18 (x1) + Superior Initiative Enhancement 80R-19 (x1) + 5 Augments + Proficient Stim
  • Alacrity: Superior Nimble Enhancement 80R-12 (x1) + Superior Nimble Enhancement 80R-14 (x2)
  • Critical: Superior Adept Enhancement 80R-19 (x2) + Sha’tek Adept Package MK-19  (x2) + Sha’tek Adept Device MK-19 + 9 Augments + Proficient Stim + 2 Crystals

Relics

  • Sha’tek Relic of Serendipitous Assault + Sha’tek Relic of Focused Retribution (Dxun/new content)
  • Sha’tek Relic of the Primeval Fatesealer + Sha’tek Relic of Devastating Vengeance (old content)

Tacticals
TACTICAL DESCRIPTION  SOURCE
Malmourral Mask
When Annihilate deals damage to an enemy affected by Force Rend triggers a burst of damage up to 8 targets around
Flashpoint Bosses
Spiteful Saber Rupture deals 10% more damage. Vicious Slash, Vicious Throw, and Dual Saber Throw refreshes the duration of your Rupture’s bleed effect and tick its damage.
Daily/Weekly Mission Crates

You will want Spiteful Saber tactical over every other tactical available, no matter the situation (minus trash).  Thirsty Blade doesn’t help you as much as Spiteful, Overwhelming Offense performing about the same as Thirsty Blade, and Malmourral Mask is only useful for trash.  You can equip and use it for slightly quicker trash clears but is not worth spending Tech Fragments on otherwise.


Utilities

Skillful

Masterful

Heroic

Utility Builds

Now that I’ve gone over every utility at your disposal, I can give a few basic builds that work great for me.  These are just suggestions, and you can feel free to change these up based off of play style or preference.

Fury Stacking (pre-fight Fury building):

  • Skillful: All Utilities
  • Heroic: Brooding

Normal PVE:

  • Skillful: Cloak of Carnage, Brazen (can be replaced with Path Carver in AOE fights if playing Carnage), Defensive Roll
  • Masterful: Phantom (can be replaced with Expunging Camouflage for self-cleanse), Relentless, Cloak of Annihilation
  • Heroic: Unbound, Thirst for Rage, Blood Ward

No Predation Required:

  • Skillful: Cloak of Carnage, Brazen, Defensive Roll, Cloak of Rage
  • Masterful: Phantom, Cloak of Annihilation
  • Heroic: Thirst for Rage, Blood Ward, Interloper (or Through Victory, Interloper preferred for Annihilation and Carnage)

Ranked PVP:

  • Skillful: Cloak of Carnage, Brazen, Defensive Roll
  • Masterful: Expunging Camouflage, Undying, Relentless
  • Heroic: Unbound, Thirst for Rage, Blood Ward

As I said, these are just suggestions for builds.  Everyone prefers different things, and the only way to find out what works for you is to experiment for yourself.


Abilities and Passives

Sith Warrior Abilities
ABILITY DESCRIPTION
Assault Generates 2 Rage and inflicts X amount of weapon damage with a series of quick melee attacks. Attacks with both weapons if dual wielding.
Channel Hatred Channels your hatred to restore your health. Cannot be used during combat.
Disruption Smashes into the target, disrupting its current action and preventing that ability from being used for the next 4 seconds.
Force Charge Jumps to a distant target, dealing X damage with the main-hand weapon, immobilizing the target for 2 seconds and interrupting the target’s current action. Builds 3 Rage. Cannot be used against targets in cover.
Force Choke Chokes the target, stunning it for 4 seconds. Deals X kinetic damage and builds 3 Rage during the duration. This ability can be channeled while moving.
Furious Power Consumes all the ability charges of Furious Power and applies Furious Power stacks to you. Each stack increases your next direct single-target melee attack by 25% and its consumed whenever you deal damage with these attacks. Recharges 1 ability charges every 30 seconds.
Intimidating Roar Paralyzes up to 8 enemies in fear, preventing any actions for 6 seconds. Damage ends the effect prematurely.
Mad Dash Madly dash forward 20 meters, dealing X weapon damage to enemies in your path and and increasing your defence chance by 100% while dashing. Can not be used while immobilized or hindered.
Ravage Perform a series of lightsaber attacks that deal X weapon damge. Strikes with both weapons if dual-wielding.
Saber Ward Raises a lightsaber ward, increasing melee and ranged defenses 50% and absorbing 25% of damage taken from force and tech attacks. Last 12 seconds.
Smash Smashes up to 8 enemies within 5 meters, dealing X – X damage. Stuns weak and standard enemies for 2 seconds.
Sweeping Slash Slashes up to 8 enemies within 5 meters in front you for X weapon damage. Attacks with both weapons if dual wielding.
Unleash Purges incapacitating and movement-impairing effects.
Unnatural Might Increases the target’s melee, ranged, Force, and tech bonus damage and healing by 5% for 60 minutes. If the target is a group member, all other group members are alo affected.
Vicious Throw Throws the main-hand lightsaber at a target, dealing X weapon damage. Only usable on targets at or below 30% Max Health.

Marauder Abilities
ABILITY DESCRIPTION
Annihilate Strikes the target with both lightsabers for X – X weapon damage. Each use of this ability grants Annihilator for 30 seconds, lowering the cooldown of your next Annihilate by 1.5 seconds. Stacks up to 3 times. Requires two lightabers.
Battering Assault Strikes the target multiple times with both lightsabers, dealing X amount of damage and building 6 rage. Requires two lightsabers.
Berserk Requires and converts 30 stack of Fury to go Berserk, granting 30% alacrity. Lasts for 6 charges, with each attack consuming 1 charge. An additional stack of Ferocity is granted if Ferocity is used while Berserk is active.
Bloodthirst Requires and converts 30 stacks of Fury to issue Blooodthirst to you and your Operation group members within 40 meters, increasing all damage and healing done by 10% for 10 seconds.
Cloak of Pain Reduces all damage taken by 20% and deal x energy damage to attackers. This effect cannot occur more than once every second. Lasts 10 seconds. Cloak of Pain refreshes to its full duration when attacked, but this effect cannot last more that 30 seconds in total.
Crippling Slash Slashes the target for X weapon damage, slowing its movement speed by 50% for 10 seconds and reducing the healing it receives by 20 for 10 seconds. Requires two lightsabers.
Deadly Saber Charges your lightsabers with deadly energy for 15seconds, causing your next 3 successful melee attacks to make the target bleed for X internal damage over 6 seconds. Stacks up to 3 times.
Dual Saber Throw Throws both lightsabers in a straight line towards the target, dealing X weapon damage to up to 8 enemies directly in front of you up to 30 meters away. Affected enemies are slowed by 50% for 6 seconds. Requires two lightsabers.
Force Camouflague Obscures yourself with the Force, becoming difficult to detect, reducing your threat towards all enemies, reducing all damage taken by 50%, granting immunity to controlling effects, and increasing movement speed by 30%. Lasts 4 seconds. Dealing direct damage ends the effect prematurely.
Force Rend Summons dark Force power to build 3 rage and rend the target, causing it to bleed for X internal damage over 9 seconds.
Frenzy Enters a furious frenzy, immediately building 30 stacks of Fury.
Obfuscate Obscures the target’s vision, reducing its melee and tanged accuracy by 90% for 6 seconds. Cannot be used on Operation bosses. This ability does not respect the global cooldown.
Predation Requires and converts 30 stacks of Fury to issue Predation to you and your Operation group members within 40 meters, increasing movement speed by 50% and melee and ranged defense by 10%. Lasts 10 seconds.
Rupture Stabs the target for X weapon damage and causes it to bleed for X internal damage over 9 seconds. Reqires two lightsabers.
Undying Rage Reduces the damage you take by 99% for 4 seconds.
Marauder Passives
ABILITY NAME DESCRIPTION
Enraged Slash Vicious Slash, Sweeping Slash, Vicious Throw, Massacre, Annihilate, and Furious Strike refund 1 rage when used. In addition, Battering Assault beats down its target for 45 seconds. Beat Down targets take 5% more daamge form melee attacks.
Fury Activating an attack that spends rage and dfeating opponents builds Fury. When 30 stacks of Fury are built, you become Furious, enabling the use of Berserk, Predation, and Bloodlust.
Short Fuse Increases the amount of Fury built by 2 when activating abilities that consume rage, and reduces the cooldown of Frenzy by 30 seconds.

Rotations

For Annihilation, there is a “set rotation,” but there is not mindless button spam for you to follow, unlike the Fury spec where it’s the exact same buttons over and over until the target dies.  What I mean by this is that Annihilation has a set rotation for its main abilities, but your filler abilities are all dependent on RNG. This is due to the amount of rage built up crit hits from direct attacks on bleeding targets (see “Bloodlust” perk in Annihilation tree), and from the 20% chance of building 1 rage every second from DOT damage (see “Hemorrhage” perk in Annihilation tree).  This being said, Anni’s opener is pretty strict and 9 times out of 10, you will be using the exact same abilities for dummy parsing for the first 20 or so GCDS.

The point of the Opener is to both build up your Annihilator stacks as soon as possible, as well as get the rotation flowing smoothly so you don’t have to think much after the opener is complete.


Opener

(Precast Channel Hatred for 30 Fury stacks)

Force Charge > (Deadly Saber) Battering Assault (Bloodthirst + Furious Power) > Annihilate (Frenzy) > Force Rend > (Berserk) Rupture > (Adrenal) Ravage > Proc’d Dual Saber Throw > Filler > 

Filler > (Deadly Saber) Filler > Filler > Force Rend > (Furious Power) Annihilate > Battering Assault > 

Filler > Filler > Filler > (Deadly Saber) Ravage > Filler > Force Rend > 

(Furious Power) Annihilate > Filler > Filler > Filler > Filler > (Deadly Saber) Filler >

After your opener, the set rotation in total is 24 GCDs consisting of 4 “Blocks”.  The way I think of it is that you have Annihilate as your first GCD, and then you hit Vicious Slash as your third GCD every time to refresh Rupture Bleed if you haven’t refreshed it in the last 5 GCDs.  This way, you keep your rotation flowing nicely due to using all of your important abilities off cooldown.  

In practice, the simple way to think about the rotation is this:

(Furious Power*) Annihilate > Filler > Filler (Rupture if first time on target/downtime occurs) > Filler > Filler > Filler

With the way that cooldown works for Force Rend (8 GCDs), it “floats” in the rotation.

For example, if you use Rend as the 2nd GCD in the rotation, the next time you will use it is in the 4th, then the 6th.  

With this being said, the rotation looks more specifically like this:

(Furious Power*) Annihilate > Force Rend > Filler (Rupture if first time on target) > Filler > Filler > Filler

(Furious Power*) Annihilate > Filler > Filler > Force Rend > Filler > Filler

(Furious Power*) Annihilate > Filler > Filler > Filler > Filler > Force Rend

(Furious Power*) Annihilate > Filler > Filler > Filler > Filler > Filler

We can get even MORE specific with the rotation if we choose by looking at the cooldowns of your other “filler” abilities.

With the specified gear, Ravage has a 12 GCD Cooldown. The Proc for Dual Saber Throw (see “Pulverize” in Annihilation skill tree) has a chance to occur every 16 seconds due to the internal proc cooldown being reduced by alacrity (from 18 seconds) which means that you can only use Dual Saber Throw as a viable filler every 12 GCDs (if proc’d). The Proc is also RNG dependent, and because of the opener and/or whenever it decides to Proc throughout the rotation, this ability floats around to be almost anywhere as a filler rather than taking up a specific slot. Because of this, I will not be including Dual Saber Throw in the visual. 

Taking Ravage into account, the rotation looks more specifically like this:

(Furious Power*) Annihilate > Force Rend > Filler (Rupture if first time on target) > Ravage > Filler > Filler

(Furious Power*) Annihilate > Filler > Filler > Force Rend > Filler > Filler

(Furious Power*) Annihilate > Filler > Filler > Ravage > Filler > Force Rend

(Furious Power*) Annihilate > Filler > Filler > Filler > Filler > Filler

We have a few more abilities we can add to this rotation to make it even more specific. One of them doesn’t have a GCD and can be hit between abilities, but it has a cooldown equivalent of 8 GCDs.  This happens to be an ability where most of your DOT damage is coming from (minus Rupture bleed now with Spiteful Saber), and that is Deadly Saber. You will actually hit this ability off cooldown no matter what, especially since it doesn’t initiate a GCD. The other ability is another “floater” depending on how much Rage you have built up.  Battering Assault is an insane amount of Rage, especially when building Rage with 2 passives already in Annihilation. Unfortunately, you cannot rely on these passives all the time, calling for a Battering Assault to fix all of your Rage problems. It has a 14-second cooldown, which is the equivalent of 10 GCDs. As stated, you WILL NOT be using this off cooldown due to RNG as well as the fact that you build Rage from Force Rend rotationally.  This means that theoretically, you only have to use it on the block of the rotation where you aren’t using Rend. To sum it up, the reason we don’t use this off cooldown is that you will waste a TON of Rage doing that, which we do not want to do going into the last block where you have filler spam, which is mostly consuming the Rage you’ve built up during the other 3 blocks. With RNG being a dependent factor for using Battering Assault, I will also not include this in the visual.

Taking Deadly Saber into account, the rotation looks more specifically like this:

(Furious Power) Annihilate > Force Rend > Filler (Rupture if first time on target) > Ravage > Filler > Filler

(Furious Power) Annihilate > (Deadly Saber) Filler > Filler > Force Rend > Filler > Filler

(Furious Power) Annihilate > Filler > Filler > (Deadly Saber) Ravage > Filler > Force Rend

(Furious Power) Annihilate > Filler > Filler > Filler > Filler > (Deadly Saber) Filler

The full rotation after the opener then consists of 24 GCDs where quite a few abilities float around depending on RNG.  Taking into account our opener, the blocks change just a bit, and the full rotation looks roughly like this:

Opener:

(Precast Channel Hatred for 30 Fury stacks)

Force Charge > (Deadly Saber) Battering Assault (Bloodthirst + Furious Power) > Annihilate (Frenzy) > Force Rend > (Berserk) Rupture > (Adrenal) Ravage > Filler > Filler > 

Filler > (Deadly Saber) Filler > Filler > Force Rend > (Furious Power) Annihilate > Filler > 

Filler > Filler > Filler > (Deadly Saber) Ravage > Filler > Force Rend > 

(Furious Power) Annihilate > Filler > Filler > Filler > Filler > (Deadly Saber) Filler > [Core]

Core:

(Furious Power) Annihilate > Force Rend > Filler > Ravage > Filler > Filler >

(Furious Power) Annihilate > (Deadly Saber) Filler > Filler > Force Rend > Filler > Filler >

(Furious Power) Annihilate > Filler > Filler > (Deadly Saber) Ravage > Filler > Force Rend >

(Furious Power) Annihilate > Filler > Filler > Filler > Filler > (Deadly Saber) Filler > [Repeat Core Indefinitely] 


Berserk

Maximizing your DPS comes from using Berserk at the right time. Because of your Tactical, you end up consuming more rage and generating more Fury than before.  Due to this, you will want to use Berserk as soon as you have your 30 Fury stacks, no matter how many DOTs you have on the target. More Berserk uptime ends up being better than delaying it for having all 3 DOTs up.  This is a change I found after countless amounts of dummy parsing and testing in 6.0+.

A lot of downtime or screw-ups can happen during fights, which means your damage can either plummet, or you can recover and redeem yourself.  The way to redeem yourself is to remember the basics of how the blocks work. You want to separate Annihilate and Rupture by one GCD when you open on a new target so that Rend can float around as you continue DPSing.  ALWAYS use Deadly Saber whenever it’s off cooldown so that you aren’t wasting damage (Deadly does 2nd most of your DOT damage, first being Rupture bleed with tactical). Rend will always be in the 2nd, 4th, or 6th GCD in your block. Make sure you have plenty of Rage to continue the rotation smoothly (Deadly Saber takes 3 Rage, Annihilate takes 4 to use, but refunds 1 automatically, and 2 if it crits).  Using Battering Assault/Assault as fillers to recover Rage is more important than trying to spam higher hitting abilities if you are going to run out of Rage to do your blocks correctly.

One thing I have failed to touch on as of yet is what I mean by “filler” in the rotation blocks.  “Filler” refers to any ability you can use to fill the gap in between your other abilities that you will hit in the blocks.

Your Fillers for Annihilation include:

  1. Proc’d Dual Saber Throw (refreshes and ticks Rupture Bleed)
  2. Vicious Throw (refreshes and ticks Rupture Bleed)
  3. Vicious Slash (refreshes and ticks Rupture Bleed)
  4. Battering Assault (do not use if above 5-6 Rage)
  5. Assault

The filler list above I listed in order of priority.  Dual Saber Throw (when it’s proc’d) does more damage than a Vicious Throw/Slash, and activates the Spiteful Saber Tactical. Vicious Throw can be used in execute to do more damage than a Vicious Slash, but also activates the Spiteful Saber Tactical. Same applies for Vicious Slash.


AOE Rotation

In fights that require AOE, the rotation is pretty simple. If you have the Malmourral Mask Tactical, your AOE rotation looks like this:

Rupture > Force Rend > Smash > Annihilate > Sweeping Slash > Sweeping Slash > Battering Assault > Dual Saber Throw > 

Rupture > Force Rend > Smash > Annihilate > Sweeping Slash > Sweeping Slash > Sweeping Slash > Assault > Repeat

For your AOE rotation without that Tactical, it looks something like this:

Rupture > Force Rend > Smash > Sweeping Slash > Sweeping Slash > Sweeping Slash > Battering Assault > Dual Saber Throw >

Rupture > Force Rend > Smash > Sweeping Slash > Sweeping Slash > Assault > Sweeping Slash > Sweeping Slash

You may run into situations where you won’t have enough Rage to complete a full AOE block without using Battering Assault or Assault. This is fine, just replace a Sweeping Slash with Assault or Battering and go ham again. 

*Furious Power is your new ability in 6.0.  With the Descent of the Fearless Set, you will have to use this ability whenever you can on abilities that matter, but be careful to manage the timing as well so your 10% damage increase doesn’t fall off.  You will want to use Furious Power on Annihilate every time, but you will also have extra stacks you can throw on other abilities as well. Ravage being the next most important due to it hitting multiple times, and the charge on Furious Power applying to the whole ability.  Dual Saber Throw DOES NOT use a Furious Power Stack, so you, unfortunately, cannot use it on that ability. Lastly, you will want to use extra stacks on Vicious Slash. Unfortunately, you may or may not have Furious Power for every Annihilate due to RNG, but you will always use the stacks on Annihilate over anything else.


About the Author

Hello everyone, I am Dantiko (or more commonly known as just “Dan”).  I have played and mained Marauder since the launch of the game, but I did not get into any hardcore raiding until late 4.0 and 5.0+.  I am currently 26/26 for old NiM since 5.0 and am in the process of getting a team together for 6.0 NiM clears.

If you have any questions or concerns over anything in this guide, feel free to send me a message in Discord @Dantiko#0639

About Xam Xam

Owner of MMO Bits, and formerly the owner of Xam Xam Says, Xam Xam is an Aussie who has been playing MMO's for over 5 years and can't get enough of them. She mainly plays Healing Classes but will also DPS and reluctantly Tank (if she has one). She prefers to PvP but doesn't mind doing all the other 'MMO bits' as well.

View all posts by Xam Xam