Gunnery Commando

Last Updated: 5/31/21

Table of Contents


About the Class

Gunnery is a burst DPS class that can also provide decent sustained DPS. They excel in target swapping. They do well in fights with mobility. With great survivability and good DPS, a skilled Gunnery player may not match the top-end DPS of some classes but can more than hold their own in Hard Mode Ops.

Utility and Mobility

With proper utilities, every Gunnery ability is instant or can be used on the move except for Grav Round. Unfortunately, Grav Round is the most frequently used ability in the rotation. Use of Tech Override (w/ Utility) can enable 2 instant casts, and using Vortex Bolt will enable 1 instant cast. In fights with lots of mobility, a Gunnery player may have to use a basic attack occasionally but generally can maintain very good DPS on the move with practice.


Commandos have great survivability. Except for classes that include a tank discipline, they are the only DPS class that wears heavy armor. As a class with a healing discipline, they possess good off healing capability for emergencies. They also possess a wide range of useful defensive abilities that include a straight buff to DR, an emergency sustained self heal and a powerful reflect. Gunnery also contains a really cool defensive via its threat drop ability due to a passive skill tree ability.

Role in Operations

Gunnery has flexibility regarding target assignments and is frequently a good choice to deal with adds. Combining heavy armor, good defensive CD’s, off-heals, and skills-utilities buffing mitigation and healing received, Gunnery should also provide a very durable DPS player.

6.1.2 Impact on Discipline

Gunnery was nerfed in patch 6.1.2 via the removal of the +10% critical chance buff from the Concentrated Fire set bonus. The nerf was primarily intended towards Commando healers but affected Arsenal as well. As such, Apex Predator should now be the best in slot set bonus choice for Gunnery as it provides a strong buff to your primary filler, Grav Round, in comparison to a much weaker Concentrated Fire set bonus after the nerf.


I usually take some combination of the following Utilities, though the optimal combination can change from fight to fight. As of 6.0, the tiers have been reorganized.

Skillfull Tier

You must take 3 to advanced to Masterful.

Cell Capacitor - Recharge Cells now immediately recharges 15 additional cells and grants 10% alacrity for 6 seconds.

Must take, more energy = more DPS.

Parallactic Combat Stim - You recharge 20 cells when stunned, immobilized, knocked down or otherwise incapacitated. Also, when incapacitated, your next Tech ability deals 10% damage or healing. This effect lasts for 15 seconds.

Situational, used for fights with lots of stuns or knockbacks as it will significantly increase DPS by using more high-energy high damage fillers. Given the lack of good choices in Skillful, I would nearly always take this utility.

Chain Gunnery - Increases the damage dealt by Hail of Bolts by 25%. Situational, great for boosting AoE DPS but skillful DoT spread should handle AoE damage to a sufficient degree.

I don’t care for this utility but it remains the best available out of a pool of poor remaining choices. Suit FOE should not generally be taken by a DPS player, so I am usually left with this utility to finish out the tier.

Suit FOE - Increases stealth detection, melee and ranged defense by 3% and reduces the cooldown of Stealth Scan by 5 seconds. Also, when you activate Field Aid on yourself, all periodic damage taken is reduced by 30% for 12 seconds.

A DPS player should generally not be cleansing themselves (leave that to the healers and spend the GCD on more DPS), but in some limited instances this could be useful.

Masterful Tier

You must take 6 between Heroic and Masterful.

Overclock - Reduces the cooldowns of Concussive Round and Tech Override by 15 seconds each. Also, Tech Override grants a second charge, making your next two abilities with an activation time activate instantly.

A very useful utility for Commando DPS players. Both DPS disciplines feature an instant proc of their filler attack used in the rotation. When/if that proc does not line up, this utility can help prop up the rotation. It can also be very helpful when DPSing on the move.

Advance the Line - Increase the duration of Hold the Line by 4 seconds.

I usually take it as a longer duration for Hold the Line grants significant extra movement speed in fights and can be very helpful on many fights.

Reflexive Shield - When you take damage, the active cooldown of Reactive Shield is reduced by 3 seconds. This effect cannot occur more than once every 1. Seconds. Also, when taking damage, you have a 20% chance to emit an Energy Redoubt which absorbs a low amount of damage and lasts 6 seconds. This effect cannot occur more than once every 10 seconds.

Frequently take, this can drastically reduce the cooldown on a key defensive.

Charged Barrier - Charged Bolts , Grav Round, and Medical Probe build a Charged Barrier that reduces damage taken by 1% for 15 seconds. Stacks up to 5 times.

I usually take, a good utility that will grant you 5% extra DR for the majority of most boss fights, helping survivability. I always take for any fights where Advance the Line is not needed.

Electro Shield - When activated, your Reactive Shield charges with electricity, zapping attackers for elemental damage when they deal direct damage to you. This effect cannot occur more than once each second.

Situational, there are some fights where this utility would be useful and preferred over Charged Barrier.

Heroic Tier

A maximum of 3 utilities

Forced March - Allows Full Auto, Boltstorm, and Successive Treatment to be activated while moving.

Always take, being able to channel on the move is a massive boost to your mobility and is the most essential utility for this class.

Shock Absorbers - Reduces damage taken from area effects by 30%. Also, while stunned, you take 30% less damage from all sources.

Must take, 30% AOE and stun damage reduction is massive.

Adrenal Surge - Adrenal Rush triggers at, and can heal you up to, 60% of your maximum health. Also, Adrenal Rush lasts 2 seconds longer and heals for twice as much each time it restores health.

I usually take, I love this utility for any operation with lots of raid-wide damage. If you get low on health but the healers are swamped and trying to burst-heal a tank to keep them alive, then as long as you don’t eat any big damage spikes you don’t need any heals for 12 seconds (and generally will still be in decent 50-60% health after 12s). When used with skill, this makes Adrenal Rush a HUGE survivability boost over its existing capabilities. Absent an enrage or other high damage AoE or mechanic, I never die when I hit Adrenal Rush with this utility.

Trauma Stabilizers - While Reactive Shield is active, you generate a stack of Trauma Stabilizers each time you receive direct damage. Stacks up to 10 times. When Reactive Shield expires, each stack of Trauma Stabilizers instantly heals you for 4% of your maximum health.

Don’t usually take as while a 40% potential heal sounds nice, you need Reflexive Shield for this to be meaningful and Shock Absorbers will usually reduce your damage taken by more than this utility will heal you.

Example Utility Build

Here is what I run for most encounters, though I frequently take other situational utilities for specific fights.

Key Passives

Armor Piercing Cell - Loads your rifle with an armor-piercing cell. While active, armor penetration is increased by 35% and alacrity is increased by 3%.

This passive is the base ability for the discipline, which focuses on armor penetration to deal heavy damage by bypassing enemy armor moreso than most other disciplines. The 3% alacrity bonus also makes it cheaper on a stat budget to achieve desired alacrity GCD breakpoints.

Charged Barrel - Grav Round grants Charged Barrel, increasing the damage dealt by the next High Impact Bolt by 6% or reducing the activation time and increased the healing dealt by the next Medical Probe by 20%. Stacks up to 5 times.

This passive drives a key feature of the discipline’s rotation which is to use High Impact Bolt nearly on cooldown and with as many stacks of Charged Barrel as possible to get the full 30% damage buff.

Cell Charger - You passively regenerate 2 energy cells every 1.5 seconds. In addition, the amount of energy cells depleted by High Impact Bolt is reduced by 10.

This passive is critical to the discipline's energy management by increasing "fast" energy regeneration from 5 per second to 7 and making a key filler net positive for energy regeneration.

Supercharged Barrel - Charged Barrel increases the critical chance of the next High Impact Bolt or Medical Probe by 3 per stack.

Related to Charged Barrel, this passive adds a critical chance buff of 3% per stack up to a maximum of 15%. Thus, using High Impact Bolt with 5 stacks of Charged Barrel grants +30% damage and +15% critical chance.

Burst Mode - Armor penetration granted by Supercharged Cell is increased by 5%, and Supercharged Cell stacks build twice as fast and can build 3 additional stacks.

A passive to further increase armor penetration and improving energy management through more frequent uptime of Supercharge stacks.

Ironsights - Increases the damage dealt by grenade attacks, round attacks, and Vortex Bolt by 10%. Also, Vortex Bolt marks its target, causing it to take 5% more damage from ranged attacks.

This passive provides an overall damage buff and an important debuff that will improve the effectiveness of most of the discipline’s attacks.

Decoy - Diversion grants 2 charged of Decoy. Each charge of Decoy intercepts and absorbs an incoming Force or tech attack. Each time you absorb a Force or tech attack in this manner, Decoy loses 1 charge. Lasts up to 10 seconds.

This passive is really neat for mitigation purposes. Decoy now becomes a cheese ability for highly damaging Force/Tech attacks. A great example are the orbs in Brontes Hard/Master Mode in the Dread Fortress operation. Combined with the already great class defensives, Gunnery is a very strong discipline from a survivability perspective.

Curtain of Fire - Grav Round and Hail of Bolts finish the cooldown on Boltstorm. This effect cannot occur more than once every 8 seconds.

The most important passive ability to the discipline, it provides for the proc of Boltstorm. This drives the priority rotation and its goal to trigger this passive ability as close to every 8 seconds as possible, even while Boltstorm may not be immediately used due to higher priority abilities.

Gearing in 6.0

Gearing Stat Allocation

Please see my Gearing Guide and Alacrity Guide for a detailed overview of gearing in 6.x in SWTOR.

For Gunnery Commando, I gear as follows:

  • Set Bonus: Apex Predator (Concentrated Fire is okay if you primarily run Assault Specialist)

  • Tactical: Primed Ignition (Thermonuclear Fusion for AoE)

  • Amplifiers: Armor Penetration

  • Mods: Unlettered Lethal Mods

  • Relics: Devastating Vengeance & Primeval Fatesealer (Serendipitous Assault & Focused Retribution for Dxun/PVP)

  • Stim: Proficient

  • Adrenal: Critical (Attack for Dxun only)

For Gunnery Commando, I allocate my tertiary stats as follows:

  • Accuracy: 1,585 - 1,630 (anything outside this approximate range and I usually try to re-optimize by swapping around enhancements and augments)

  • Alacrity: around 2,550 for high alacrity, a secondary option is around 850 for low alacrity (at least 2,000 if the Zeal guild perk applies)

  • Critical: all remaining tertiary points go into Critical

  • Shield: None

  • Absorb: None

Set Bonus

Concentrated Fire

Increased drop rate from PVP.

(2) +2% Mastery

(4) Damaging an enemy or healing an ally has a 10% chance to generate a stack of Supercharge. This effect cannot occur more than once every 5 seconds.

(6) Activating Supercharged Cell makes your next High Impact Bolt, Mag Bolt, or Bacta Infusion critically hit or heal.


Concentrated Fire was nerfed in patch 6.1.2 to remove the four piece bonus that provided very high uptime on a +10% critical chance buff. The old six piece bonus was split into the new four and six piece bonuses. The set is far weaker as a result and unlikely to be best in slot for Commando DPS, particularly Gunnery.

The primary weakness of the set bonus is the infrequent nature of its benefits. An auto-crit is nice but being triggered by Supercharged Cell is infrequent enough that its benefits are diluted in terms of DPS impact. Similarly, the 10% chance to generate Supercharge is helpful in theory but unable to be controlled. Even assuming that a DoT is ticking to provide multiple ticks of damage each GCD and thus multiple rolls at the 10% Supercharge chance, it seems unlikely the four piece will trigger more often than every 8-10s seconds on average (so 3-5 seconds after it becomes possible to trigger it from the internal cooldown). That translates to an extra Supercharged Cell once every 80 - 100 seconds, or 2 - 3 extra Supercharged Cells each fight. Again, that’s not a bad DPS benefit but it pales in comparison to the previous Concentrated Fire.

As such, I recommend Apex Predator as it provides more consistent benefits via its steadily increasing critical chance on Grav Round and periodic free boosted use of Grav Round. Had the developers wanted Concentrated Fire to be a stronger option, I would have preferred a feature that let you control when the extra Supercharged Cell was available such as using Reserve Powercell to instantly generate 10 Supercharge (or something similar). That would lead to the same overall uptime but much better control for back-to-back Supercharge Cell windows and be far more powerful as a burst DPS option.

Impact on Rotation:

No change on rotation.

When to Take:

Not recommended for Gunnery if Apex Predator is available, but a decent alternative if it is not available.

Apex Predator

Increased drop rate from Dxun operation Nature of Progress. Not available to purchase at Tech Frag vendor.

(2) +2% Mastery

(4) Activating Charged Bolts, Grav Round or Medical Probe increases the critical chance of your next Charged Bolts, Grav Round or Medical Probe by 10%. Stacks up to 5 times but is removed on 6th stack.

(6) Dealing damage with Charged Bolts or Grav Round or healing with Medical Probe grants a stack of Power Step, stacking up to 5 times. At 5 stacks, your next Charged Bolts, Grav Round or Medical Probe is more effective and generates no Heat.


Apex Predator was not changed by patch 6.1.2 but was the beneficiary of the nerf to Concentrated Fire. It is the strongest set bonus available for Gunnery Commandos. It's four and six piece bonuses provide a significant boost to the damage of Grav Round, which is used often in the Gunnery rotation. The energy savings of getting an occasional free Grav Round is also quite helpful to the discipline's energy management, which can be tricky to properly time a proc for Boltstorm.

Impact on Rotation:

No change to priority rotation. The set bonus will boost damage to Grav Round and make every 6th use free of energy cost, which is helpful to the rotation and enabling more frequent use of Grav Round but does not elevate it above any other abilities in the priority.

When to Take:

Recommended for all content if it's available.

Tactical Items

Primed Ignition

Increased drop rate from operations.

Vortex Bolt causes its target to burn. Boltstorm, Demolition Round, Vortex Bolt, and Grav Round all tick its damage.


This is a great tactical for Gunnery and is a huge reason why the discipline has much better sustained damage in 6.0. Adding a DoT and being able to tick its damage through nearly all rotational abilities adds a lot of DPS. Theorycrafting and personal parsing experience suggests it should comprise around 20% of total DPS in a high quality parse, making it a 25% increase in damage compared to DPS without the tactical equipped. This buff vastly outweighs Burning Bright as a single target option and so is the preferred tactical for all fights except those with heavy and nearly constant AoE damage requirements (e.g., Hive Queen, Dxun Holding Pens, Dxun Security Center, etc.)

Impact on Rotation:

Vortex Bolt becomes the third priority ability only behind (1) using Boltstorm before proccing it again; and (2) using Grav Round to proc Boltstorm every 8s. In terms of all other abilities, Vortex Bolt takes top priority to apply the Primed Ignition DoT.

When to Take:

All situations except for extremely heavy AoE encounters.

Thermonuclear Fusion

Increased drop rate from flashpoints.

Plasma Grenade spreads your Grav Round's Gravity Vortex to the targets it damages, as long as it damages at least one target already affected by your Gravity Vortex. Demolition Round fire additional missiles to nearby targets affected by your Gravity Vortex.


Plasma Grenade is already a helpful AoE DoT ability that should be used in AoE rotations. Adding in the capability to make Demolition Round an AoE finally gives Gunnery semi-decent AoE potential for a change.

Impact on Rotation:

In single target situations, nothing should change in that Plasma Grenade is not used and this tactical provides no benefit. In AoE situations, make sure to use Plasma Grenade AFTER Grav Round but BEFORE Demolition Round. The revised opener would go as follows:

Grav Round

Plasma Grenade (spreads debuff from Grav Round)

Demolition Round (now an AoE ability)


(Tech Override) - normally not needed but used in this revised opener

Grav Round (proccing Boltstorm)

Vortex Bolt

Grav Round

Grav Round

High Impact Bolt


Grav Round (proccing Boltstorm)

Demolition Round (now an AoE ability)

{continue priority rotation}

When to Take:

Recommended for any heavy AoE situations, especially if the group does not have many DPS with exceptional AoE capabilities independent of tactical item choices (i.e., primarily DoT-based disciplines with DoT spreading).

Burning Bright

Increased drop rate from flashpoints.

Dealing damage with Boltstorm increases the damage of your next Vortex Bolt, stacking up to 4 times to 100%.


This tactical provides incremental extra burst damage potential via buffing Vortex Bolt. I rarely utilize this tactical because in practice it only buffs Vortex Bolt by 25-50% given its cooldown in relation to the frequency of Boltstorm. It is not worth delaying Vortex Bolt in a sustained damage situation for the extra buff.

As such, I feel like this tactical is only useful for (1) PvP, where you could more reasonably save the 4 stack until you get someone low in health and then deal a huge amount of burst damage; or (2) PVE encounters with exceptionally high burst window checks. With that said, there are no DPS burst checks that are high enough to require this type of maneuvering while having low enough sustained DPS check to enable delaying a high damage ability for a burst window.

Impact on Rotation:

No change in most situations. Use Vortex Bolt on cooldown except for higher priority abilities as per normal priority.

When to Take:

Not recommended for any situations.


Armor Penetration (or Weapon Expertise / Periodic Intensity as secondary options)

All damage is Energy/Kinetic except the Elemental DoT applied by Vortex Bolt via the Primed Ignition tactical. As such, Armor Penetration provides significantly more boosts to DPS than other alternatives.

Weapon Expertise should provide the next best boost to DPS, primarily due to Boltstorm dealing weapon damage and being the highest DPS ability. Periodic Intensity is a distant third for Gunnery as it primarily buffs the Vortex Bolt DoT.

If you are looking to synergize the best amplifier build to run both Gunnery and Assault Specialist, I recommend Armor Penetration or Periodic Intensity. Armor Penetration is the best for Gunnery by a large margin, while Periodic Intensity is the best for Assault Specialist. If you run one discipline significantly more often than the other then balance your amplifier towards that discipline. If you run them equally, you should receive the best DPS boost from Armor Penetration by a small amount.

Key Abilities

Boltstorm - Channelled attack over 2 GCDs dealing high damage. 15 second cooldown but can reset cooldown through Curtain of Fire passive ability every 8 seconds.

The highest damage ability for Gunnery and signature ability for the discipline. As discussed below, the entire main focus of the rotation is using this ability as often as possible by proccing it every 8s with Grav Round via the Curtain of Fire passive ability.

Demolition Round - High damage ability, deals 25% more damage if target is affected by the debuff applied by your Grav Round.

The highest damage filler ability and highest damage in one GCD, it takes high priority.

Electro Net - Instant filler should be applied on cooldown.

A strong and energy efficient damage ability. It has a long cooldown so is only used infrequently in the rotation but should be prioritized when it is available.

High Impact Bolt - High damage ability, 15 second cooldown, damage is buffed by stacks of Charged Barrel.

A key damaging ability that is buffed through uses of Grav Round to deal additional damage and increased critical chance. It should be used on cooldown with as many stacks of Charged Barrel as possible.

Vortex Bolt - High damage ability, 18 second cooldown, procs Grav Round to be instant the next time it is used.

A high damage filler ability that procs Grav Round to be instant. Depending on your choice of tactical, this will either by your top priority filler to apply a DoT or the lowest priority filler. It is important in the rotation and bears additional attention since proccing an instant Grav Round can alter the timing of when Boltstorm can be procced.

Grav Round - Spammable filler ability, applies Sundered debuff (reduces armor by 20%), resets the cooldown of Boltstorm via the Curtain of Fire passive ability, and builds stacks of Charged Barrel. Builds 2 Supercharge.

Your general filler ability is very important. It deals relatively high damage for a filler cast, applies an armor debuff that also significantly boosts the damage potential of Demo Round, applies stacks of Charged Barrel to buff the damage of High Impact Bolt, and procs to reset the cooldown of Boltstorm. The ability should be frequently used but avoiding using it too much is critical to avoid energy issues.

Supercharged Cell - Converts 10 stacks of Supercharge to regenerate 10 units of energy and provides a buff unique to each discipline. For Gunnery, Supercharged Cell increases armor penetration by 10% for 8s.

The discipline's low cooldown energy management and offensive cooldown ability. It should generally be used on cooldown except when a burst damage phase is imminent.

Hammer Shots - Free spammable basic ranged attack, builds 1 Supercharge per use.

Your basic filler ability. It should be used occasionally in the rotation as a substitute for Grav Round to manage energy. The key skill for making the rotation work is knowing when you can safely swap in a basic attack to avoid energy issues.

Cooldowns & Other Abilities

Field Aid - Cleansing ability, use when necessary

Advanced Medical Probe - Cheap and powerful instant cast heal

Medical Probe - Spammable moderate heal. Builds 2 Supercharge.

Diversion - Reduces threat towards all current enemies. 45s cooldown.

Recharge Cells - Rapidly restores 50 energy over 3 seconds. Most powerful energy cooldown. 1:30 cooldown.

Reserve Powercell - Your next ability costs no energy. Lasts 15 seconds. 1:30 cooldown.

Tech Override - Your next ability used within 15 seconds with an activation time will activate instantly and then grant immunity to pushback and interrupts for 6 seconds. 1:00 cooldown.

Hold the Line - Grants 6 seconds of immunity from movement-impairing effects, knockdowns and physics and increases movement speed by 30%. 45s cooldown.

Reactive Shield - Increases damage reduction by 25% for 12 seconds. 2:00 cooldown.

Echoing Deterrence - Absorbs all incoming single target direct damage for the next 6 seconds and reflects 50% of the absorbed damage back at the attacker and healing you for 5% of your maximum health each time an attack is absorbed. Can be used while stunned. 2:00 cooldown.

Adrenal Rush - Applies a Health Monitor that lasts 60 seconds, which triggers Kolto Overload when your health is reduced to 35% or less. If your health is already 35% or less, it triggers immediately. Once triggered, it goes on cooldown for 3 minutes and rapidly heals you up to 35% of your max health for 10 seconds but will not exceed 35% of your max health.



6.0 NOTE: This opener and rotation assumes the player is using the Primed Ignition tactical. If not using this tactical, the priority for filler abilities will be slightly different as Vortex Bolt becomes your lowest priority versus being the filler priority with the tactical and as presented below.

















  1. Grav Round - We lead with a hard cast of Grav Round to apply the armor debuff that will make all other abilities do more damage.

  2. Adrenal OFF GCD - We start dealing very heavy burst damage immediately so hitting all cooldowns up front.

  3. Supercharged Cell OFF GCD

  4. Vortex Bolt - Prioritized filler due to Primed Ignition tactical to apply the DoT

  5. Demolition Round - Next priority filler as it deals very heavy damage

  6. Electro Net - Last priority filler

  7. Boltstorm - We have used 3 GCDs of fillers since Grav Round so need to channel here so we can immediately reset its cooldown again next ability

  8. Grav Round - Should be an instant cast via the earlier use of Vortex Bolt, should also proc Curtain of Fire and reset the cooldown of Boltstorm, also increases our stacks of Charged Barrel from 2 to 4.

  9. Grav Round - Filler ability, increases our stacks of Charged Barrel to a max of 5.

  10. High Impact Bolt - Used with 5 stacks of Charged Barrel to maximize damage and critical chance

  11. Reserve Powercell OFF GCD - We avoided energy issues earlier via the upfront use of Supercharged Cell, so we use here prior to Boltstorm to get the maximum energy recovery right as we start to get near to a breakpoint on energy levels.

  12. Boltstorm - We reset its cooldown 3 GCDs ago, so need to use here so we can continue to reset its cooldown as quickly as possible

  13. Grav Round - Earliest GCD we can reset the cooldown of Boltstorm again, so top priority to use here

  14. Grav Round - No other priority ability off cooldown so used here

  15. Demolition Round - Used off cooldown

  16. Boltstorm - Need to use here before we reset its cooldown again

(continue priority rotation)

Single Target Priority Rotation


Grav Round (if proccing Boltstorm).

Curtain of Fire enables Grav Round to proc Boltstorm and increase its damage +10% every 8 second. Boltstorm is your highest damage ability, so proccing it as often as possible is the most important priority. Since you will be channeling Boltstorm in that window, that means you can use Boltstorm and 2-3 other abilities.

The best way to think about Boltstorm by # of GCDs. 8 Seconds to proc Boltstorm equates to either 5 GCDs if you are hardcasting Grav Round (i.e., the proc occurs at the END of the GCD) or 6 GCDs if you are proccing Grav Round via Vortex Bolt or Tech Override.


Boltstorm (if you can need to use Grav Round in 2 GCDs to proc Boltstorm)

See the discussion above at #1 regarding the use of Grav Round. The overall goal of the rotation is to use Boltstorm as much as possible. However, the fastest you can ever use this powerful attack is every 8s because that is the rate limit for triggering Curtain of Fire. As such, it does not matter if you use Boltstorm as soon as it procs or just before proccing it again.

As discussed further below regarding the use of Grav Round to proc Curtain of Fire to reset the cooldown of Grav Round, you will have either 6 GCDs or 7 GCDs between procs depending on whether you hard cast or instant cast. If you have not already used Boltstorm by the time only 2 GCDs are left before you need to proc it again, it takes absolute priority. You do not want to waste a use of Boltstorm.


Vortex Bolt (with Primed Ignition tactical)

After the core goals are handled to make sure you are using Boltstorm every 8s through timely proccing of Curtain of Fire, you then get into priority for high damage fillers.

Vortex Bolt takes top priority if you are using the Primed Ignition tactical due to the damage dealt and the DoT applied by the tactical. You want as much uptime on that DoT as possible as it provides a significant buff to the discipline's sustained damage output.

A key consideration when using Vortex Bolt is whether the instant cast it provides for your next use of Grav Round will impact the timing to proc Boltstorm. As discussed further below, if you use Grav Round on the 6th GCD expecting to proc it via a hard cast then the instant cast could fail to proc it and disrupt the rotation and energy management by forcing a second Grav Round.


Demolition Round

A very high damage ability that should be used on cooldown. The only consideration is to make sure Grav Round has been applied first, as its debuff will enable Demolition Round to deal 25% more damage in addition to the damage increase provided by its armor debuff.


Electro Net

Electro Net is a high damage and energy efficient ability. It has a very long cooldown so is not used that often typically.


High Impact Bolt (with 4-5 stacks of Charged Barrel)

Ideally High Impact Bolt should only be used with 5 stacks of Charged Barrel. However, a key element to maximizing DPS on this discipline is knowing that is is frequently optimal to use High Impact Bolt on cooldown with 4 stacks rather than delaying 2-3 GCDs for other priorities.



If it's confusing to see Boltstorm on this list twice (and one being fairly far down), remember that our ability to use the ability is limited to no more often than every 8 seconds. The only time we want to use Boltstorm is when other abilities are on cooldown or when it's nearly time to proc it again.

The pattern this usually follows in a fight is that after you use Grav Round to proc Curtain of Fire, your high priority fillers (Vortex Bolt, Demolition Round, Electro Net and High Impact Bolt) are on cooldown. In that case, use Boltstorm right away to make room later to use the fillers as they come off cooldown before proccing Boltstorm again.


Grav Round (if not proccing Boltstorm and have excess energy)

You can use Grav Round as a general filler when all other abilities are on cooldown, you cannot proc Boltstorm, and have excess energy. Be very careful about extra uses of Grav Round as that is the way newer players most frequently get into energy trouble. When in doubt, skip this priority and go to your basic attack instead.


Hammer Shots (if unable to proc Boltstorm and do not have excess energy)

Used when everything else is on cooldown, you cannot proc Boltstorm that GCD with Grav Round, and do NOT have excess energy for an extra cast of Grav Round.

Proccing Boltstorm

As a reminder and quick recap, Boltstorm can have its cooldown reset every 8s by using Grav Round via the Curtain of Fire passive ability.

The overall priority for the rotation is to use Boltstorm as much as possible by proccing it as close to every 8s as possible. As discussed above, this priority does not always mean using Boltstorm on cooldown but instead using Grav Round every 8s or as close to is as possible to get the proc.

The aspect of this rotational goal that makes it difficult to achieve is the odd cooldown timer of 8 seconds. Assuming no alacrity, 5 GCDs will take up 7.5s while 6 GCDs will take up 9.0s. So that gives us a 6 GCD cycle for each proc that needs to use 2 GCDs to channel Boltstorm and 1 GCD to cast Grav Round to get the proc at the end of the window. That leaves 3 GCDs for fillers.

Adding another wrinkle is the impact of Vortex Bolt or using Tech Override. Both cause Grav Round to be instant cast. This is important because it changes the timing of the proc.

Normally Grav Round triggers the Curtain of Fire proc at the END of the cast/GCD. When the ability is instant, the proc triggers at the BEGINNING of the GCD. Using an instant proc Grav Round on the 6th GCD will NOT proc Boltstorm since the proc happens at 7.5s assuming no delay between ability activations. Even worse, now we have to hard cast a second Grav Round that procs Boltstorm at the end, taking 11.5 seconds to get the proc instead of the usual 9s.

So what's the takeaway here? There are two scenarios that guide your "rotation" in terms of how often to use fillers versus using Grav Round to proc Boltstorm, which are entirely dependent on whether Grav Round is a hard cast or instant cast:

  1. Hard Cast Grav Round: 3 filler abilities, 1 Boltstorm, then hard cast Grav Round

  2. Instant Grav Round: 4 filler abilities, 1 Boltstorm, then instant cast Grav Round using either Vortex Bolt or Tech Override

Energy Management

Always use Reserve Powercell on Boltstorm. This channeled ability takes 2 GCDs so using the cooldown here grants more free energy regeneration than any other ability and offsets the most expensive individual ability (20 energy cost). This grants you the most energy regeneration for the ability use as compared to any other option.

Make sure to get the full benefit from Recharge Cells cooldown and its buff from the Cell Capacitor utility. This ability regenerates 65 energy over 3 seconds. Along with natural energy regeneration during those 3 seconds of anywhere from 6 to 15 energy, you can hit this cooldown when at 20-25 energy cells / 75-80 heat and get all the way back into a good energy position. Do not hit it as soon as you drop below optimal energy regeneration levels or you will waste a lot of free energy. This is the difference between an extra 8-10s of heavy burn so take full advantage and get some practice on a dummy to get the feel for when to hit it.

Avoid over casting Grav Round and make sure to use Hammer Shots periodically. The optimal ability usage over an extended period should be about energy neutral without any energy cooldowns. When you consider Supercharged Cell that is used rotationally, you should be able to use the occasional Grav Round as a filler in addition to the cast that is used to proc and reset the cooldown of Boltstorm.

However, the easiest way to wreck Gunnery from an energy perspective is too much Grav Round spam. I suggest using Grav Round continuously when Recharge Cells is available (or about to be), but otherwise being selective with its use. If I have Reserve Powercell, I can use 1-2 extra Grav Round casts. If I know Supercharged Cell is up or about to be, that's 1 extra.

If I have no energy cooldowns available, I try to alternate my use of Grav Round and Hammer Shots. Blocks where you use your big fillers can drop you in energy fairly quickly, so anytime I'm below 80 energy I try to prioritize Hammer Shots as well to protect against big drops from a block of big fillers.

Again, it's important to note that you should always prioritize Grav Round to proc Boltstorm. Just be careful to avoid lots of extra casts to maintain energy properly.