Zaw Rapier (Needle)

Stradavar/Stradavar Prime
April 18, 2019

Zaw Rapier (Needle)

Zaw Rapier (Needle)

Before Gilding

STATUS : 0.00%
STANCE POLARITY :  Naramon – Dash/Bar (Utility, Misc.)
IMPACT : 17.5
SLASH : 22.5
VIRAL : 27.5

After Gilding

STATUS : 10.0%
STANCE POLARITY : Naramon – Dash/Bar (Utility, Misc.)
IMPACT : 20.5
PUNCTURE :  35.5
SLASH : 25.5
VIRAL : 30.5

Meet the needle, a zaw rapier using the Plague Kripath strike, Korb grip and the Vargeet 2 Ruhang link. Why a rapier? Well it isn’t just because of the weapon or its damage, but its about the stance. Ever since the removal of quick melee, my 2 most go to zaws, my polearm and my staff, have lost their shine for me, because I dislike their stance with a passion. The movement involved in the stance is simply just odd, it slows down and speeds up constantly, which makes them feel so awkward. Well, Vulpine Mask, the only rapier stance is amazing because it does not interrupt your movement whatsoever. You can be moving around swinging, heck you can even be sprinting and it doesn’t slow down at all, so that makes the melee flow super nicely and gets rid of that weirdness of the constantly change of speed.

Not only that though, Vulpine Mask also has a super nice moveset which has a whole bunch of guarenteed slash procs, multihits and damage increasing hits, all of which feel really nice to pull off, however at high level, its all about hidden flourish. This combo is ridiculously powerful and can kill any high level enemy in a single combo. Hold E to start the combo with a charge attack, then spam E to finish it. The best thing about this combo though is that not only do you get a charge attack at the start of the combo, but if you get to the end, it opens enemies up to finishers, with the damage done being pure finisher damage, which is not affected by armour whatsoever, so that makes it absolutely ridiculously powerful, and one of the best scaling builds outside of covert lethality.


So that brings us to the build. There’s actually nothing particularly crazy here to be honest. We’re going for pure damage with the Primed Fever Strike and Shocking Touch for corrosive damage, Sacrificial Steel to boost our base crit which we then use Blood Rush and the Power Spike from Naramon to increase our crit as the combo timer goes up and Amalgum Organ Shatter. I know that normal Organ Shatter does have better crit damage, but since we actually use the charge attack on here, that boost to charge attack speed is super nice. Berserker for attack speed and then that last slot really is going to be your personal preference mod. I go for Molten Impact here for more raw damage, however you could use something like Gladiator Might for more crit damage, especially if you are stacking Gladiator mods either on your frame or your deconstructor prime, Body Count also works if you don’t want to run Naramon, Condition Overload if you want to use the slash procs from the stance or procs from Cryotra or of course, something I do, which is to run a riven in that spot. The arcane is going to be down to personal preference, personally I run Exodia Might for the lifesteal on that finisher, which i find really useful. However, Contagion is amazing on this provided you are better at using it than I am, I tend to kill myself with it. But if you know how to use it, you can mow down large groups with it as well. Its a very underrated arcane, and worth using if you can get used to it.

My Thoughts

So, with all that said and done, do I like this new zaw? I think rather unsurprisingly, I absolutely do. Ever since they came out, my polearm and staff zaws have been my most used melee, by a really long way. But since that removal of the quick melee and having to rely on the stances, I’ve really stopped enjoying them anywhere near as much. As a result of that, I’ve been looking for a new melee that I enjoy and honestly, I didn’t really think of using the rapier. But you know what, this is a hidden gem. When you look at what zaws people are using, you see most of the other types, but the rapier is the one that is almost always forgotten. The thing is though, this might be the strongest single target zaw out of them all, well ignoring Covert Lethality of course. No worrying about Condition Overload, you don’t even really need to worry much about Blood Rush until higher level either, because its so powerful that it mostly 1 shots almost everything in the game up to sortie level already, but that Blood Rush build will tear through high end Sorties, Arbitrations or ESO with ease. The changes to quick melee have shaken things up quite a bit to me. I didn’t really click with the rapiers when they came out, and to be perfectly honest, I’ve been avoiding doing much with melee because they are kind of dull and stale for the most part. But I clicked with this zaw so much that I absolutely had to make a video for you all to enjoy. Ever since building it, I’ve used basically nothing else. Its an absolute powerhouse, and honestly, not one that gets enough love for just how good it is.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *