Varric build - Best detailed Guide (2024)

By zanuffas
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Varric is one of the first companions to join the Inquisitor. He is a charming Dwarf always full of interesting banter. In this Dragon Age Inquisition Varric build guide I will try to cover all you need to know for this companion

Even though you can build Varric as a Dual wielding rogue. I do not recommend this. AI is simply not clever enough to handle all the micromanaging that this type of build needs.

Due to this, I recommend Varric + Bianca build

Important! The companion build is compatible with Nightmare difficulty, however, to pull it off correctly, be sure to have a good Inquisitor build


  • Varric level 1-10
  • Varric Archer build
    • Abilities investment - short version
    • Abilities investment - long version
    • Stats and Attributes
    • Equipment guide
    • Best Tactics
  • Conclusion

Varric level 1-10

Before reaching level 11 I suggest using the same build, doesn't matter if you like daggers or bows. The reason being is that if you play on Hard difficulties it is easier for Varric to survive with Bianca. Moreover, not having good gear will make you weak in close combat.

1Varric build - Best detailed Guide (1)StealthWith this skill, Varric can easily avoid danger
2Varric build - Best detailed Guide (2)Long Shot + Eagle EyeGreat skill for openers. I recommend using this with Varric at the start of the fight
3Varric build - Best detailed Guide (3)Death From Above
Ability is taken just for progression
4Varric build - Best detailed Guide (4)Leaping Shot + Shot from the Shadows
Extremely strong ability if used when enemies come close by
5Varric build - Best detailed Guide (5)Poisoned Weapons
I would say this is optional, but it increases overall DPS for Varric, good skill that AI can use
6Varric build - Best detailed Guide (6)Looked Like It Hurt
Restores Stamina on critical hits, works great with Leaping Shot
7Varric build - Best detailed Guide (7)Evasion
Increases survivability

Once you reach about level 11 start working on the build below

Varric Archer build

This build concentrates on playing Varric as a rogue archer with his bow/crossbow Bianca. This is the only crossbow in the game.

Remember that you will need to respecialize skills before making this build

Abilities investment - short version

This section is a short version of abilities that I recommend getting to create this build

IMPORTANT: Get relevant Amulet of Power for Varric to maximize the number of ability points

Sabotage tree

Not a mandatory tree, but gives a few perks to maximize Varric damage.

Varric build - Best detailed Guide (8)

Archery tree

Will give you Leaping Shot, strongest bow user shooting ability and Pincushion

Varric build - Best detailed Guide (9)

Artificer tree

This tree has extremely strong Focus ability and passive skills

Varric build - Best detailed Guide (10)

Subterfuge tree

Our aim is to get Shadow strike + upgrade

Varric build - Best detailed Guide (11)

Abilities investment - long version

IMPORTANT: Get relevant Amulet of Power for Varric to maximize the number of ability points

1Varric build - Best detailed Guide (12)Spike Trap + Pyrotechnics
Great ability with Crowd control capabilities
2Varric build - Best detailed Guide (13)Opportunity KnocksOne of the best passive talents in the game. When you or your allies do a critical hit they reduce your cooldowns.
3Varric build - Best detailed Guide (14)Set Them Up
Gives 25% damage boost to traps
4Varric build - Best detailed Guide (15)Hail of Arrows
Extremely strong Focus ability. With it + Leaping Shot Varric can take down dragons solo
5Varric build - Best detailed Guide (16)Elemental Mines
I take this ability just for progression
6Varric build - Best detailed Guide (17)And Take Them Down
Boosts entire party critical hit chance by 5%
7Varric build - Best detailed Guide (18)Death from AboveWe take this ability just for progression
8Varric build - Best detailed Guide (19)Leaping Shot + Shot from the Shadows
Best offensive archer skill. Shoots multiple projectiles from short range. With the upgrade, Varric will also enter stealth after the attack
9Varric build - Best detailed Guide (20)Stealth
Good ability to use so Varric could escape danger
10Varric build - Best detailed Guide (21)Evasion
Passive ability increases odds of survival for Varric
11Varric build - Best detailed Guide (22)Evade
We take it just for progression
12Varric build - Best detailed Guide (23)Shadow Strike + Long Shadows
This ability is important as it allows Varric to restore stamina. The upgrade also enables it to be ranged ability
13Varric build - Best detailed Guide (24)Caltrops
We take this ability for Progression
14Varric build - Best detailed Guide (25)Looked Like It Hurt
Each critical hit will restore your stamina by 10

Late game skill investments

At this point, you will maximize Varric damage output by getting a few more necessary talents

15Varric build - Best detailed Guide (26)First Blood
We take this ability for progression
16Varric build - Best detailed Guide (27)Explosive ShotWe take this ability for progression
17Varric build - Best detailed Guide (28)PincushionEach consecutive hit with a bow (in this case Bianca) will increase your damage by 5%
18Varric build - Best detailed Guide (29)Fallback PlanWe take this ability for progression
19Varric build - Best detailed Guide (30)Tricks of the Trade
Boosts the duration and status effects of all skills that your party members use
20Varric build - Best detailed Guide (31)Poisoned Weapons + Infected Wounds
For a short period of time coat your weapons with poison increasing your damage
21Varric build - Best detailed Guide (32)Fighting Dirty
The poison effect lasts longer

Stats and Attributes

In this section, I go through the recommended stats that you should look at when choosing what equipment to equip. This will ensure that you make the best Varric build:

  • Critical chance – I recommend having at least 60%. It will ensure that you both have fast cooldowns and an almost full stamina bar.

  • Critical Damage – After you have a high critical rate (50 %+), invest in critical damage. This should be your priority investment as it gives the biggest damage boost.

  • Cunning – if you are not able to get direct investment to critical chance get Cunning bonuses

  • Attack – provides larger damage bonus, better than dexterity as you usually get much higher bonuses for Attack

  • Dexterity – alternative to critical damage, but usually you get less of it compared to direct boost to Critical Damage

Equipment guide

In this section, I will cover what gear should you use for this build


The only Weapon that Varric will use for the build is Bianca.

Varric build - Best detailed Guide (33)

The main point is to upgrade it as soon as you have better components. Moreover, do not forget to put ruins

Bianca - obtainable upgrades

Aiming ModuleAiming Module IIIProvides the largest bonus +8% to critical chance
ArmsSuperb Crossbow ArmsThe Trespasser DLC alternative is available in the Winter Palace
ArmsBianca Arms VIAlthough not the best by pure damage, it gives a large bonus to critical damage.
GripFirm Bianca GripProvides +8 Cunning, the largest amount for obtainable Grip.

Bianca - craftable upgrades

I list two options for the upgrades. Usually, one of them can be obtained easily and another requires having high-level characters.

Aiming ModuleBianca Aiming IV SchematicThe best schematic with the highest number of slots. You get it in The Descent DLC.
Aiming ModuleBianca Aiming III (Enhanced) SchematicThe best schematic available in the base game
ArmsBianca Arms VII SchematicThe strongest Arms option that gives 16 offensive leather slots and 10 offensive metal slots
ArmsBianca Arms III (Enhanced) SchematicA great option for the base game, before you reach any DLC content.
GripMasterwork Gilded Bianca Grip SchematicGives 14 leather utility slots, the best that you can get for the crossbow.
GripMasterwork Firm Bianca Grip SchematicThe best grip that you can get in the base game.

Armors - obtainable

1Stone Stalker CoatThis armor is a perfect match for this build as it provides a large boost to of 45 Cunning resulting in a much higher critical chance
2The Skin That StalksObtainable only in the Trespasser DLC. Boosts Critical Damage, Critical Chance, and Attack.
3Masterwork Prowler ArmorThis armor reduces ability stamina cost by 20% if not attacked for 5 seconds. This should be easy for Varric as he will be avoiding enemies most of the time.

Armors - craftable

1Superior Prowler Armor SchematicThis armor has 23 utility leather slots if you include upgrades. Feel free to increase either dexterity or cunning based on what Varric needs more.
2Sturdy Prowler Armor SchematicThis is a cheaper alternative to Superior Prowler Armor Schematic. It also gives less defense and 22 utility leather slots.
3Stone Stalker Coat SchematicCan be obtained from The Descent DLC. Has decent slots, but is worse compared to the options above.

Helmets - obtainable

1Stone Stalker MaskHas both good bonus stats and armor rating. Can be obtained in The Descent DLC
2Helm of the DrascaA decent mid-game option that gives a good boost to critical damage by increasing Dexterity.
3Ambassador's MaskAlternative to Mask of the Grand duch*ess if you have a high critical chance (50%+)
4Mask of the Grand duch*essAlternative to Ambassador's Mask if you have a low critical chance

Helmets - craftable

1Superior Skirmisher Hat SchematicThe best craftable helmet that gives 10 leather utility slots and is easy to obtain
2Skirmisher Hat SchematicA cheaper alternative of the Superior Skirmisher Hat Schematic. Has only 8 leather utility slots
3Superior Adventurer Hat SchematicCosts only 182 Sovereigns and gives 7 leather utility slots. Get it if you are short on money.


-Amulet of PowerGives Varric a single ability point. It is consumed once you use it.
1Malika's GuardAs Varric will not concentrate on flanking damage this amulet will greatly increase the overall attack power.
2Superb Amulet of DexterityThis amulet will increase dexterity resulting in higher critical damage.
3Amulet of the RogueThis amulet will increase both critical chance and critical damage
4Superb Amulet of CunningThe amulet will increase the critical chance, allowing to reduce ability cooldowns.


1The Bind That GuidesThis belt boosts the critical chance. Only obtainable in the Trespasser DLC.
2Superb Belt of StaggeringThis belt will allow Varric to stagger enemies
3Superb Belt of SunderGives a chance to decrease the enemy's armor.


1Superb Ring of Critical DamageProvides a large boost to critical damage, especially powerful once you have 50%+ critical chance
2The Hand That CutsOnly obtainable in Trespasser DLC. However, provides large offensive bonuses
3Varric build - Best detailed Guide (67)Ring of SlicingExpensive ring bought in Black Emporium. Boosts your critical damage and critical rate.
4Superb Ring of Critical ChanceIncreases Critical chance allowing Opportunity knocks ability to activate more often
5Superb Ring of AttackIncreases overall Varric damage

Best Tactics

Here is my recommendation on how you should set up your Tactics:

Varric build - Best detailed Guide (70)

  • Shadow Strike - Preferred or Active. Varric should use this as often as possible to restore MP
  • Leaping shot - Active. This ability will deal the most damage for Varric
  • Poisoned Weapons - Preferred or Active. You want this skill to be always active
  • Spike Trap - Active. Varric should place the trap at least once below his feet until enemies come by. This way he can ensure that enemies are knocked back
  • Elemental Mines (Optional) Disable or Active. Try out this ability and see if you prefer its usage
  • Stealth - Active. Should be used in case Varric gets attacked by enemies.

All other abilities should be set to Disabled.


Thank you for reading this Dragon Age Inquisition Varric build. This guide should help you understand how to make your companion as strong as possible.

Feel free to leave feedback below

Varric build - Best detailed Guide (2024)
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