“SOLO Sorc”

Updated: Greymoor Chapter
Type: Solo Dungeons, Overland and Maelstrom Arena


Welcome to the “SOLO Sorc” Magicka Sorcerer Build for PvE in Elder Scrolls Online. This build is optimized for solo play. Make sure to bookmark the link as I will keep updating the build for each new Update of ESO. You can find more Sorcerer content on the website:

This build here is specifically designed for SOLO play. You can play this build in Overland or Dungeons (normal and veteran). I also made sure to give you a few gear choices below because it is not always easy to get the right gear in ESO. Sorcerers have a pretty easy time compared to other classes soloing stuff because you have pretty big shields and good self healing plus a pet that can also tank enemies.

  • Solo Build for Normal & Veteran Dungeons
  • Solo Build for Overland
  • Easy to get Gear & Advanced Setups
  • Big Shields
  • Good Self Healing

Solo Setup

5x Perfect False God’s Devotion, 5x Mother’s Sorrow, 2x Iceheart on a Breton with Longfin Pasty Melon buff food.


I have chosen a double shock destruction staff setup with this build because it is easier to set enemies off balance and you can also get some splash damage on shock heavy attacks. With shock heavy attacks you can also regain resources easier because it is easier to keep the attack focused on a mob due to the channeled attack. If you prefer a fire staff, go for it.

If you want to see more viable gear options I recommend reading the Magicka DPS Gear Sets Article which explains all of the sets in detail.

  • Setup 1 Most Optimal Setup
  • Setup 2 Easy to get Gear
  • Setup 3 Beginner Setup

Gear Setup 1

  • Offensive vs Defensive: I recommend using the Iceheart Monster set, it makes your life so much easier because the shield constantly refreshes on you, that way you can focus more on damage too. If you want to go for pure damage make sure to choose the Slimecraw Monster Set, the Minor Berserk buff is really strong for a solo setup. You can also go for a more AoE focused Monster Set like Grothdarr.
  • False God’s Devotion: False God's Devotion is very powerful in both the imperfect and perfect version, I can highly recommend this set. You can farm it fairly easy in normal mode Sunspire.
  • No Maelstrom Staff? If you do not have a Maelstrom Staff, just use a Mother’s Sorrow staff instead, the dps loss is not that big.
ChestFalse God's DevotionLightDivineMagicka
BeltFalse God's DevotionLightDivineMagicka
ShoesFalse God's DevotionLightDivineMagicka
PantsFalse God's DevotionLightDivineMagicka
HandsFalse God's DevotionLightDivineMagicka
NecklaceMother's SorrowJewelryArcaneSpell Damage
RingMother's SorrowJewelryArcaneSpell Damage
RingMother's SorrowJewelryArcaneSpell Damage
Weapon 1Mother's SorrowShockPreciseAbsorb Magicka Enchant
Weapon 2Crushing WallShockInfusedWeapon Damage Enchant

Gear Setup 2

This setup is easier to acquire and also has more defensive stats compared to the first one, which means it’s safer to play. Once again, make sure to use the Iceheart Monster Set, it really makes a huge difference in terms of defense, it procs very easily and gives you a huge shield that absorbs a lot of damage.

Both Necropotence and Mother’s Sorrow can be farmed in their respective Overland zones or you can also buy them via the Guild Store. It would be preferable if you get the gear with divine trait, but you can also use any other trait, you will not loose that much power. And non divine gear pieces are usually very cheap to buy.

You can get a Mother’s Sorrow Shock staff fairly easy through a quest item (Argonian Muck Minder of Mother’s Sorrow – Unique Item). The quest is called “The Saving of Silent Mire“.

NecklaceMother's SorrowJewelryArcaneSpell Damage
RingMother's SorrowJewelryArcaneSpell Damage
RingMother's SorrowJewelryArcaneSpell Damage
Weapon 1Mother's SorrowShockPreciseAbsorb Magicka
Weapon 2Crushing WallShockInfusedWeapon Damage Enchant

Gear Setup 3 Beginner

  1. You can buy blue gear (random trait) from the store for a very cheap price or farm these sets: Necropotence and Mother's Sorrow. You don’t need to get the best traits right away, more important is that you have the full sets.
  2. You can obtain a Shock Mother’s Sorrow Staff very easy through a quest in Deshaan. I made a video about this a while ago: How to get a Mother’s Sorrow Staff for free.
ChestNecropotenceLightAny TraitMagicka
BeltNecropotenceLightAny TraitMagicka
ShoesNecropotenceLightAny TraitMagicka
PantsNecropotenceLightAny TraitMagicka
HandsNecropotenceLightAny TraitMagicka
HeadMagnus' Gift or Monster SetHeavyAny TraitMagicka
ShoulderMagnus' Gift or Monster SetMediumAny TraitMagicka
NecklaceMother's SorrowJewelryAny TraitSpell Damage
RingMother's SorrowJewelryAny TraitSpell Damage
RingMother's SorrowJewelryAny TraitMagicka Recovery
Weapon 1Mother's SorrowShockAny TraitAbsorb Magicka
Weapon 2Mother's SorrowShockAny TraitWeapon Damage Enchant

Where can I get the gear?

False God's Devotion: Sunspire
Necropotence: Rivenspire Overland, Guildtrader
Mother's Sorrow: Deshaan Overland, Guildtrader
Maelstrom Destruction Staff: vet Maelstrom Arena
Slimecraw: Head: Wayrest Sewers I, Shoulder: Maj Undaunted Chest
Grothdarr: Head: Vaults of Madness, Shoulder: Glirion
Iceheart: Head: Direfrost Keep, Shoulder: Glirion Undaunted Chest
Magnus' Gift: Craftable in Rivenspire, Greenshade, Shadowfen

IMPORTANT: You can get a Shock Mother’s Sorrow Staff by doing a simple quest, that way you earn the staff! You will receive the “Argonian Muck Minder of Mother’s Sorrow” from the Quest in Silent Mire, Deshaan.


  • Remember, you can change out some of the abilities if you want. And you can also adjust the bars, in case you like to have Critical Surge on the frontbar, go for it. The nice thing about a Magicka Sorcerer is that you can just slot CriticalSurge and it will pretty much cover your healing, if you drop low on health you can just keep using Hardened Ward till your health is back up.
  • If you want more heals you could replace the Volatile Familiar with the Summon Twilight Matriarch skill to get some extra burst heals, though usually Surge is enough.
Hardened Ward Crystal Fragments Force Pulse Consuming Trap Summon Volatile Familiar Shooting Star
Unstable Wall of Elements Elemental Drain Boundless Storm Critical Surge Summon Volatile Familiar Greater Storm Atronach
Destruction Staff MainbarDestruction Staff bar
Slot 1: Hardened WardSlot 1: Unstable Wall of Elements
Slot 2: Crystal FragmentsSlot 2: Elemental Drain
Slot 3: Force PulseSlot 3: Boundless Storm
Slot 4: Consuming TrapSlot 4: Critical Surge
Slot 5: Summon Volatile FamiliarSlot 5: Summon Volatile Familiar
Ultimate: Shooting StarUltimate: Greater Storm Atronach

Skill explanation:

  • Hardened Ward: Your main defensive ability, as long as you keep your shield up enemies can not damage your health.
  • Crystal Fragments: Use this only when it procs, that way you can use it without cast time and it costs less and deals more damage. it also procs the Exploitation passive to get some extra Spell Critical.
  • Force Pulse: This is your main spammable,
  • Consuming Trap: Single Target DoT that you need to keep on the enemy, every time someone dies affected by this, you gain a huge amount of resources.
  • Volatile Familiar: The Familiar has a lot of AoE damage and can also aggro some of the monsters.
  • Shooting Star Ultimate: If you have a lot of stacked mobs, you can use this to deal really good AoE damage and also regain Ultimates for each enemy hit.
  • Unstable Wall of Elements: Your main AoE ability, has to be on the ground all the time.
  • Elemental Drain: Apply this to bosses or bigger enemies, this will make your sustain better and also increase your damage by A LOT.
  • Boundless Storm: Deals small damage ticks and gives you major resistances. Plus if you use it you can also gain speed buff to run faster.
  • Critical Surge: This is your main heal, if you keep this skill up in combination with your shields you should not really die, unless you get one shot.
  • Greater Storm Attronach: This is your Single Target Ultimate, use it whenever you fight a boss.

Championpoints for Solo Magicka Sorcerer

In case you need help distributing your Champion Points, make sure to check out the Champion Points Calculator!

Championpoints [810]

The Ritual
81 Thaumaturge
The Atronach
28 Master-at-Arms, 21 Staff Expert
The Apprentice
64 Elemental Expert, 66 Elfborn, 10 Spell Erosion
The Shadow
56 Tumbling, 56 Shadow Ward
The Lover
100 Arcanist
The Tower
56 Warlord, 2 Sprinter
The Lord
The Lady
49 Hardy, 49 Elemental Defender, 48 Thick Skinned
The Steed
81 Ironclad, 43 Spell Shield

Championpoints [600]

The Ritual
40 Thaumaturge
The Atronach
28 Master at Arms, 21 Staff Expert
The Apprentice
64 Elemental Expert, 37 Elfborn, 10 Spell Erosion
The Shadow
20 Tumbling, 20 Shadow Ward
The Lover
100 Arcanist, 23 Tenacity
The Tower
37 Warlord
The Lord
The Lady
42 Hardy, 42 Elemental Defender, 40 Thick Skinned
The Steed
52 Ironclad, 24 Spell Shield

Championpoints [300]

The Ritual
18 Thaumaturge
The Atronach
16 Master at Arms, 11 Staff Expert
The Apprentice
29 Elemental Expert, 16 Elfborn, 10 Spell Erosion
The Shadow
The Lover
49 Arcanist, 49 Tenacity
The Tower
2 Warlord
The Lord
The Lady
23 Hardy, 23 Elemental Defender, 23 Thick Skinned
The Steed
31 Ironclad

Important Info for Solo Sorc


Gear Setup 1: Tri-Stat Buff Food

You can buy both of these buff foods in the store, Bewitched Sugar Skulls is more expensive than the Longfin Pasty, but both provide similar stats that we need.

Bewitched Sugar Skulls
(Max Health, Max Magicka, Max Stamina)

bewitched sugar skills food

Longfin Pasty with Melon Sauce
(Max Health, Max Magicka, Max Stamina)

Food buff

Gear Setup 2 & 3

Because we need to get sustain from somewhere else if we do not have False God’s Devotion, I recommend using the Witchmother’s Potent Brew on Gear Setup 2 & 3. You can buy this very cheap in the guild stores or even ask people to give you some.

Food buff

Mundus Stone

The Lover Mundus (Increased Spell Penetration)


All Magicka based races work with this setup.

Breton (Best sustain)
Altmer (Best damage)


We already get Major Sorcerery 20% Spell damage buff through Critical Surge, therefore you could use Essence of Spell Critical potions. You can also use the normal potions, but then you will loose out on Major Prophecy, 10% Spell crit. If you are going to use normal potions, you could slot Inner Light to gain the Major Prophecy buff instead.

Essence of Spell Critical Potion
(Spell-crit, Magicka, Health)
(Columbine, Ladys Smock, Water Hyacinth)

essence of spell critical potion

Essence of Magicka Potion
(Bought in Guild Stores, fairly cheap)

Magicka sorcerer beginner build

Important: Make sure to get alchemy to level 50 to unlock the Medicinal Use passive. That way you can keep up the buffs of potions a 100% of the time.



All into Magicka

Resource Management

Heavy Attacks are your best friend, they restore a huge amount of resources, when an enemy is set off-balance you get twice the amount of resources back from a heavy attack! Because we use a shock staff, we will also deal AoE damage with our Heavy Attacks.

Consuming Trap restores a whooping 7000 Magicka if an enemy dies, I usually apply this on a low Health enemy, so once he dies I will get a huge resource boost.

Elemental Drain should always be applied on the enemy, it increases your damage and will boost your sustain due to Minor Magickasteal debuff on the enemy.

Potions, I use them every 45 seconds to boost my Magicka, don’t forget the alchemy Medicinal Use passive to increase the duration of your potions.

  • Heavy Attacks
  • Consuming Trap
  • Elemental Drain
  • Potions

The False God's Devotion set also returns a lot of Magicka every time an enemy dies. You can get this set from normal Sunspire, it is very easy to obtain. If you don’t have it, I recommend using the Witchmother’s Potent Brew to gain more Magicka Recovery, like explained in the buff-food section.


For this kind of setup there is not a fixed rotation at all, your main goal should always be to stay alive and you do that by keeping up your shield and healing abilities.

  1. Critical Surge is your main healing ability, you have to keep this up a 100% of the time.
  2. Boundless Storm has to also be up a 100% of the time, this gives Major Resolve, increasing your resistances by 5280, which is a lot of damage mitigation on top of the Major Expedition speed buff for a few seconds to move faster.
  3. Hardened Ward is your main defensive ability, I always recommend keep up a shield in combat.
  4. Elemental Drain should be applied before the fight starts on an enemy, it will increase your damage and sustain by a lot.
  5. Summon Volatile Familiar and Unstable Wall of Elements are your two AoE damage over time effects that you have to keep up all the time.
  6. Consuming Trap is your Single Target damage over time effect and also your biggest sustain boost. If you place this on an almost dead enemy, it will restore around 7000 Magicka!
  7. Force Pulse and Crystal Fragments are your spammables, once you did all the above and you still have time, you can use these two skills to damage the enemy!

You have to weave Light Attacks between all the abilities, Light Attacks deal a lot of damage and also proc Weapon Enchantments, if you want to learn more check out this guide here: “Weaving Beginner Guide”.

Bad Habits

  • If you have the bad habit of not reapplying your backbar abilities, make sure to swap some of the very important abilities such as Critical Surge to the frontbar.
  • Keeping up your shield 24/7 is key to this build, that way your health can never really be damaged. Easy to see when you watch some of my gameplay that I keep up the shield all the time.
  • Always keep moving your character around, if you just stand on the ground you take unnecessary damage from melee monsters, that damage can easily be avoided by kiting.

Build Video & Gameplay

Here you can find the build video for the Solo Sorc build and some gameplay videos!

Build Video


Solo Veteran Cradle of Shadows with Hardmode

Solo Unhallowed Grave Gameplay

Solo Lair of Maarselok Gameplay

Solo Moongrave Fane Gameplay

Update Log

19.10.2019 Updated the build for the Dragonhold DLC.
18.03.2020 Updated the build for the HARROWSTORM DLC.
14.05.2020 Updated the build for the GREYMOOR CHAPTER.