Guide to Countering Swashbucklers in PvP

The Pirate101 Ranked PvP system is extremely unbalanced right now, with Swashbucklers easily dominating the current meta. In fact, most players include Swashbuckler skills in their strategies, which shows just how fearsome and powerful this class is. Most Pirate classes don't stand a chance against the furtive skills this one has, so how can you increase the odds of victory?

Countering Swashbucklers
The most commonly used powers in PvP are Walk in Darkness and its variation, Black Fog. These abilities allow your Pirate to become untargetable for a few turns, making you immune to physical and most ranged attacks. They are crucial to a Swashbuckler's victory and allow your Pirate to heal safely. That is why many players use gear that give these abilities and if you've had the misfortune to learn the hard way (like I did), you know exactly how powerless you can be when facing a hidden Swashbuckler and his/her companions.

If you are a ranged Pirate, you want to avoid your Swashbuckler opponent to get too close to you. If you are a Musketeer, set traps between you and your opponent. Even if they are hidden, the traps will go off when they step on the affected squares.

Area of Effect Powers & Ranged Attacks
If you are a Privateer or Witchdoctor, try to delay them as much as possible, until their ability to hide wears off. Of course, they might hide again, but most Swashbucklers will only become untargetable to get close enough to attack, while buffing. When they are within your range, use AoE powers; these will bypass their ability to hide.

If you have summons, use them as soon as possible, as they will trigger abilities like Cheap Shot, FlankingOverwatchReadied Spell and Repel Boarders when the summons get close, which will nullify the effect of Walk in Darkness and Black Fog.

Top 5 Must-Have Pet Talents
Your pet plays an important part in your way to victory! While their damage may not account for much, the talents they provide can and must be used to your advantage in battle.
  1. Scent (Preferably Rank 3)- This ability will detect any hidden enemies that move within 3 squares of your pet;
  2. Grants Kraken's Lament - This ability will reduce incoming damage, especially from melee and physical attacks;
  3. Grants Elusive - This ability will boost your chance to dodge, when your Pirate's health is below 50%;
  4. Brutal Charge - While a Swashbuckler's accuracy is naturally high, this might buy you some time, if you are lucky enough to dodge the attacks;
  5. Grants Turn the Tide - The extra damage and movement is important, especially if you want to get away and attack from a distance.
Good luck in the Brawlin' Hall and may you become a fierce Champion!

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