[Top 10] Dragon Age Origins Best Builds That Are Powerful

If you're here is because you're probably playing a Nightmare campaign and you want the best of the best to build your warden. Here I will be talking about the best items you could pick for each class and why you should pick them. 



10. The Mighty Archer Build

The archer has been the worse subclass in DAO. They are useless and pretty much everything can beat them. This build will not only allow you to survive during the worst fights but will also make you much more powerful. You won't ever complain about the archer's weakness. 

The living proof that the archer can be op and fun is this build. Don't give up on it yet. 

Why the Mighty Archer Build is Great: 

  • It will bring back the power of our long-forgotten archer. If you think the archer will never be a good subclass, this is how I prove you wrong.
  • Rediscover the true lethal power of the archer by just knowing how to build it correctly. With this build, you won't lose a single fight and I bet it will be much more challenging than playing with any of the other subclasses. 
  • This build will allow you to pass the game in Nightmare difficulty with no big issues. Just be careful with the placement of your character in the fight. 

Choose This Build if: 

  • You're looking for a challenge worth your time. 
  • You want to play with an archer but you keep feeling as if it was weak and worthless.

Build details: 

  • Far Song Bow (Prefer Fire Arrow/Arrow of Filth). If not available choose Sorrows of Arlathan.
  • Ancient Elven Helm, Gloves, Armor, and Boots.


9. Berserk/Champion Warrior Build

A magnificent build for pure damage. This build will put your warrior on another level. It’s designed for a Berserk/Champion combination. You can still choose a different secondary subclass, like Templar. If you're going into a Nightmare playthrough, this is for you. 

You should have into consideration that the attributes you choose for your champ will make a huge difference. Prefer Strength over the rest. A little bit of Willpower will make it even better. 

This build is great because:

  • It will allow you to play aggressively. You will take huge amounts of damage with a high percentage of survival. 
  • I assure you will not die if you play this right. Great combination of power. The armor will give even more stats like Willpower and will reduce fatigue. 
  • You get to play with one of the most entertaining classes without failing the attempt. 

Build details: 

  • Starfang is your first option. If not available, use the Chasind Great Maul.
  • Diligence armor, Gloves, and Boots.
  • Griffon's Helm.
  • Andrulis' Blessing Belt. (For the accessories, you are free to choose whatever you think combines better. Still, the Belt will be a great boost if you have it).
  • Spellward Amulet.


8. Shield Warrior Build

As a Shield Warrior, your main objective is to resist damage and keep yourself alive. For this purpose, you will use a Champion/Templar subclass. Remember those are the best classes for tank characters. If you're going damage prefer the Berserk-Reaver down below.

Again, for Nightmare difficulty, this will be a total boost. You will have it pretty easy and I'm sure you'll be amazed. I truly love this build, it made me appreciate my warrior so much. I was having a bad time with the tank Warrior until I found this build. 

Why the Shield Warrior Build is great:

  • It's consistent and will grant you the best stats for this champion. 
  • I believe it is quite broken and not expensive at all. Most items you’ll get during quests.
  • If you’re not used to playing as a Shield Warrior this build is a great way to go. I guarantee you’re going to have an amazing time while learning how to use it. 

Choose this build if:

  • You're willing to take huge amounts of damage and lead your team to victory with no big issues.
  • You’re playing as a Champion/Templar. Otherwise, it won’t work at its best.

Build details:

  • Dumat's Spine. My absolute favorite. A different choice could be Frenzy.
  • Large Grey Warden Shield. You can change this option according to your preferences. 
  • Grey Warden Armor Set.
  • Use the Mark of the Divine Ring and the Ring of the Warrior.
  • The rest of the accessories are free of choice.


7. Arcane Warrior Build

Probably the deadliest thing in the whole game. This champ is just crazy. I believe nothing can beat the Arcane Warrior. Especially with this build. It will grant you extreme power ability and your basic attack will no longer do any damage. As a mage, we’re used to playing only with our spells since basic attacks don’t do damage. 

This build is great because: 

  • It will make you unbeatable. You will not die if you know how to play your warrior with the right spells. 
  • You will do so much damage due to your basic attacks being very powerful.
  • With this build and class, you can forget about being a vulnerable mage and experience a different type of playthrough for a mage.
  • It makes powerful the already super-powerful arcane warrior.

Choose this build if: 

  • You like to play mages but you want them NOT to die just for once. Even in melee combat. 
  • You want to be invincible no matter your position in the battle.
  • You’re willing to replace the usual version of the defensive mage with a tank mage.

Build Details:

  • Prefer the Spellweaver which was designed for the Arcane Warrior specially and give it a Shield if possible.
  • Helm of the Honneleath or The Libertarian's Cowl.
  • The Felon's Coat or the Reaper's Vestments for Armor.
  • Gloves of the Legion or Ashen Gloves.
  • Magus War Boots or Cailan's Greaves.


6. Dual-Wield Assassin Rogue 

The Assassin is probably one of the most fun subclasses to play in DAO. I always have so much fun with this kind of character. Keep in mind you have to be paying attention to your rogue in order not to lose control of it. Leaving the rogue to the AI will always be a huge mistake. Unless you prepared your tactics in the exact order.

Why the Dual-Wield Assassin Rogue is great:

  • An amazing build that will provide you with great critical damage and DPS. The Rogues always deal with the highest amount of DPS due to the fast basic attacks and their lethality skills. 
  • This is perfectly designed for a Nightmare campaign. It is strong but not invincible. You still have to make tons of pauses to reposition your character and use your talents in the right way.
  • It’s perfectly balanced for a challenging playthrough. To me the most entertaining thing to play.

Choose this build if: 

  • You’re willing to backstab your enemies and solo them with a perfect combination of skills and items. 
  • Don’t think this will be easy, it will be hard. The Rogue is the most complex character to play, remember that. You have to be willing to learn how to play this with the right tactics.
  • You like to focus on your own character. You can’t lose sight of the rogue, doesn’t matter if it’s your character or part of your party members. Always keep an eye on the rogue.  

Build Details:

  • The Edge (DLC addition) - The Rose’s Thorn, the best dagger in the game.
  • Thorn of the Dead God or Fang.
  • Battledress of the Provocateur or The Felon’s Coat for chest.
  • Helm of the Honnleath.
  • Red Jenny Seekers.
  • Cadash Stompers.
  • Optional: if you think it's best you might want to use the Ancient Elven set.


5. Mage Build

I’m about to expose the best items you can find for any mage. This build will also work for the Arcane Warrior but prefer to use it with a non-Arcane Warrior since it already has the Spellweaver and a bunch of better options that will make it stronger than other mages. I recommend you use this build for the mage that will not be melee and will not be facing the enemy in battle. As you already know, Arcane Warrior can tank some damage meanwhile the other mages can’t. This is why I insist on not giving this build to the arcane warrior.

Why the Mage Build is great:

  • It’s pretty much the best you will find for a regular Mage, in Nightmare difficulty is a must. You’ll probably not make it without the following items. 
  • Mages can be overpowered but 
  • There are no better items than these. 

Choose this build if:

  • You’re not playing as a Blood Mage and Arcane Warrior. It works for them too but there are better items for the mentioned subclasses.
  • You want to get all the juice out of a classic mage. You might want to take this build to face the Archdemon.

Build Details:

  • Staff of the Lord Magister or Magister’s Staff.
  • The Libertarian’s Cowl.
  • Silk Weave Gloves.
  • Vestment of the Seer.
  • Fade Striders.


4. Templar Warrior Build

This is a build designed to do high amounts of damage and resist some more. I usually prefer to use it with a Berserk/Templar combination, it can also work as Reaver but not so well. Reaver is just more damage to the damage. Instead, Templar will give you resistance, which combines very well with Berserk's abilities.

This build is just fascinating because: 

  • It works very well with every two-handed warrior. No matter the subclass you choose. You can try different combinations and see their power with the strongest equipment in the game.
  • It’s the best gear. You must try it. I assure you will have a great time while doing it.
  • Is super fun to play. Berserk will be my forever favorite and this build makes it perfect. It will also look stunning in its great armor.

Choose this build if: 

  • You’re playing a deadly two-handed warrior and if you have the coin for it. It is a bit expensive.

Build Details:

  • Chasind Great Maul or Nug Crusher. If you’re playing Witch Hunt (DLC) you will have the Dragonbone Cleaver.
  • Warden-Commander Set or Blood Dragon Set.
  • Andruil’s Blessing Belt. 
  • You might want to replace the gloves for Katriel’s Gasp. 


3. Dual Wield Warrior Build

For this build, I would recommend playing it as berserk but that is up to you. This is my favorite combination of items and subclasses and I believe it's one of the most broken. Berserk-Reaver is how I like to play it. Give it a try if you're feeling the adrenaline flowing in your veins. 

It's a great build because: 

  • It brings to life the two underrated subclass Berserk-Reaver. As I said you can still choose a different subclass option but I believe it was meant to be for Berserk. 
  • You will survive the most difficult encounters and enjoy deeply your powerful warrior. 
  • It’s perfect for any battles you might face. 

Choose this build if: 

  • You're willing to play Nightmare difficulty without suffering and dying several times in combat. 

Build Details:

  • Blightblood Sword and Keening Blade. If not available go for The Veshialle/Starfang and The Edge/The Rose's Thorn
  • Cailan's set.
  • A second choice will be the Diligence set with Griffon's Helm.


2. Blood-Arcane Warrior Mage Combo Build

I love this combination but it gets boring because you’re too much for the enemy's power level. You will not die and you will destroy them. The only problem with it is that you will have to play a campaign where your decisions are going to be morally wrong. That will lead you to the disapproval of some of your party companions such as Wynne and Leliana. Be careful cause they might even decide to leave you.

Why the Blood-Arcane Warrior Build is great:

  • There’s no chance of losing a single fight with this gear and subclass combination. This explains pretty much everything, you have it all in just one character. 
  • You can even solo the whole game with it. Yes, that’s how powerful it is. 
  • It’s beyond broken. The most powerful combination in the game.

Choose this build if: 

  • You’re willing to risk your companions leaving. If you want to play as a rebel-crazy mage which might be the funniest campaign in the game, this is for you.

Build Details:

  • Final Reason in early game. Spellweaver once you get it. Provide a Shield for it once you get the Spellweaver.
  • Dragon Bone Plate armor set or Dragon Blood Armor Set.
  • Helm of the Honnleath.
  • Robes of Avernus.
  • Elementalist’s Grasp.
  • Magus War Boots.


1. Pure Blood Mage Build

This is the definitive build for a Blood Mage, my personal favorite. It works with any other secondary subclass but not for the Arcane Warrior. Of course, is not as strong as the Arcane Warrior as we’ve already pointed out before. The Arcane Warrior will forever be the most broken subclass in the whole game. But is not as fun to play as the usual mages. Especially not as fun as the blood mage. 

Why the Blood Mage Build is great: 

  • You will understand why everybody in the game is afraid of Blood Mages. I believe this is the best experience you might have since these mages aren’t usual and they’re pretty hard to use. 
  • You have to create an equilibrium between power and health. Unlike the Arcane Warrior who will have plenty of life to use, the rest of the mages are quite vulnerable. 
  • This is really fun to play and it will give a good look to your mage. 

Choose this build if:

  • You want a Blood Mage real challenge.
  • You’re taking a nightmare campaign as a mage. In the beginning, it can be weak but in the late game is really strong. 
  • You’re willing to lose some of your companion's sympathy. 
  • You have the coin to buy the gear. Remember is expensive.

Build Details:

  • Corrupted Magister Staff/Malign Staff. Keep in mind that the Staff of the Magister Lord will continue to be the best but it’s very expensive.
  • Vestments of the Seer as your first choice. The secondary are Avernus Robes or Reaper’s Vestments.
  • Lifedrinker Amulet.
  • Lifegiver Ring.
  • Sash of Forbidden Secrets Belt.
  • Blood Ring.
  • Ashen Gloves.
  • Fade Striders.
  • Collective Arming Cowl.

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