Class Guides

Warden Class Guide (U19.3)

Click here to go to the previous page – Introduction/ToC/Beginning

The Warden Class

The Warden is a very versatile class. They can do a large amount of damage or tank foes to protect fellowships. Wardens are also a great solo class, being able to take on challenging content alone. Wardens are a tough class to play and are difficult to master. It takes effort to be able to shine, but is very rewarding in the end. Wardens can focus on melee or ranged combat. They can also be very defensive while tanking.

If you are interested in a gameplay video, here is my latest:

If you want to see what a Warden is capable of, watch around [13:15] to see a Warden taking on many enemies at once and [16:24] to see a Warden taking on a single, large, boss.

Answering the question of “Why choose Warden?”

If you are not convinced from the above… Wardens can be melee, ranged, tank, DPS, and support. All that while being the best class to solo most content – from tough bosses or many mobs at once to both! Comparing to other classes, Wardens can have the following attributes to fellows:


  • Possibly a number one reason to choose a class?
  • Complicated, so it does not get boring to play like other classes might
  • Does not have a set rotation of skills or “mash when off CD” playstyle which is different than a lot of other classes


  • As shown in reasons below, a Warden can adapt to many situations and has great utility to top it off

High single target DPS

  • Not the “best” DPS, but higher than average
  • Not bursty
  • Very sustained damage
  • Shines in long fights

High(er) area-of-effect damage

  • Comparable for at least near the best AoE DPS in the game
  • Sustained, very consistent
  • Also shines in long fights with medium (2-6) number of enemies

Tanking ability

  • Can be great or good
    • Depends on fight type due to how Wardens work (why it is this way is is covered in tanking portions of the guide)
    • Either way, we can tank!

Ranged support/damage

  • Provides an alternate style to other ranged classes, focuses on Javelin use and still uses the Gambit System
  • Also provides an alternate style to other Warden roles of melee damage and melee tanking
  • Can somewhat support fellows if you like that playstyle

Hopefully that is enough to convince you! Now, this is a sad part, but still a must…

Why shouldn’t you choose a Warden?


  • While a reason to choose a Warden, maybe you want something simple… After all, the class needs this guide!
  • Otherwise generally a harder class to play and even harder to master (“advanced” in LOTRO)

“Weak” support

  • Our support isn’t the best option for a support class if your fellows specifically need a strong support class
  • In fact, it is nearly the worst, support can be thought of as a nice additional bonus to an actually DPS spec

Low-moderated ranged DPS

  • As mentions earlier, Warden damage is not at the top… and our ranged damage is a lot further from the top compared to other ranged classes
    • Hunter and Rune-keeper (and likely Lore-master, simply unknown on this one) output more damage and are ranged
  • This doesn’t mean our ranged damage is worse than all other classes’ damage! We can still go ranged if we want

Too many buttons

  • We have tons of skills and buttons, and that isn’t even including our gambit skills
  • Your skillbar won’t be able to be ’empty’

Improperly neglected

  • This may just be my experience, but does also include opinions of the class I have seen around
  • Sometimes seen as “low DPS”, especially in AoE
  • Sometimes seen as “sub-optimal, bad, tanks”
    • (why it is this way is is covered in tanking portions of the guide)

That may seem like a lot of reason to not be a Warden, but it really isn’t much. Most of the reasons come from the ranged aspect of the Warden, at least when compared to other classes in situations those classes are more “built” towards. The other ones can be seen as positives for a Warden as well (if you don’t mind a lot of buttons and being complicated).

Anyway, those are the reasons to choose a Warden. Again, you can always try one out to see if you like it! There are also many videos available for watching to see if it something you may like. Alright, that is it on the Warden. The next part will get into the guide on the class.

If you would like to support Dadi’s LOTRO Guides, or maybe just buy him a beer, click the donate button below 🙂

Click here to go to the next page – Basics to the Warden


Here is a bit about me: I started LOTRO near the end of Siege of Mirkwood and shortly before F2P came into existence. I started a YouTube channel for LOTRO, which back then often had miscellaneous videos involving my Warden. Eventually my channel strayed away from mainly Warden as it grew. Currently I am enjoying end-game content on my characters while leveling some others. My main “LOTRO presence” (not in-game) is on YouTube. I am also active on the LOTRO subreddit (and soon to be an author here!).

15 thoughts on “Warden Class Guide (U19.3)

  • Flagron

    Awesome stuff I am going to camp on it a while. Thanks for posting


  • Flagron

    Noob question When you say the Javelin skills  (hampering target et al) “Generally this skill is not used.”  do you mean at all, or just for the buff or debuff, I find marked target has a longer cool time I use them

    • If you are not playing as yellow line, it is only used on pull (while running up to mob/boss), when you have to be ranged for some reason (like a ground effect in melee range will kill you, or something similar), or when you want to target a ranged mob.

      So in general combat (again, not in yellow line), it is generally not used. Those cases are pretty rare, most commonly I use it will running up to a mob/boss.

  • thorongil

    Thanks for a great guide!

    Please clarify what are the top virtue traits for a warden.  You start by saying that Honour and Innocence are ideal, while Zeal and Fidelity are great.

    But then you say:

    So, the final virtues are…


  • thorongil

    Thinking more about virtue traits I have another question for you:

    If General Virtue Priority is listed as:
    1    Resistance
    2    Mitigations
    3    Main Stat
    4    Vitality
    5    Max Morale
    6    Secondary Stat

    Why is Fidelity classified as ‘great’ – having     +76 vitality (4th on list)
    +56 power (Not on list)
    +1539 TMi (2nd on list)
    while Tolerance is entirely skipped – having    +1539 TMi (2nd on list)
    +114 agility (3rd on list)
    +107 ICMR (not on list)
    They have equal TMi, and forgetting not so important power and ICMR, I’d have thought that +114 agility beats +76 vitality?

    Just trying to understand how this works.

    • Sorry for the confusion, I have fixed that part and made it correct. Here is what the list was meant to be:


      Agility is definitely better than vitality in this context.

  • Netheriel

    I know this is not relevant to the Warden Class, but I just saw all these beautiful guides and I’m really impressed.

    I’m searching for a complete guide for the Captain but I struggle to find a complete one: on Youtube there are only very old videos, on the official forum only few post very contraddictory and not well reviewed. On Reddit I found some info, but scattered and not complete.

    In the future, can I hope for a Captain guide amazing like these one? 😀

    Thanks so much!

    • Dadislotroguides

      I intend to have guides for every class. I have a lower level Captain, so I am not qualified to write a guide on them. I am still searching for the right person to author it.

    • I have some experience with the Captain (not enough to write a guide at the moment), but if you need help anything specific, I may be able to help.

  • I appreciate greatly this website and the guides you provide. My Warden 105 is my “main alt” and so I need guidance from others how best to gear. Follow up -> why +agility crafted relics rather than the more popular +agility +physical mastery +critical?

    • The Agility crafted relics are only if you are not able to get the better ones.

      Sealed Westemnet Device of Accuracy if you can craft it.
      If you can’t, Sealed Westemnet Device of Agility

      • tearsofwrath

        Hello there,


        first i want to say: amazing guide. i have been gone quite a while and this guide eased my way back into the game. the warden IS a complicated class afterall.


        i wonder wether you will update this guide with the Mordor Expansion one day? The additional levels, new relics and such and gear. would be great!


        Keep up the good work!

        • Dadislotroguides

          We will definitely look to get it (and the other class guides) updated to reflect the changes in Mordor.

  • You mentioned, I’m not sure where, that we want to use our longest gambits ASAP.  Also, your USE priorities reinforce this, for example:





    ….but it would seem that the class is designed to go the other way in chains, or are you saying that the chain-buffs aren’t worth chasing in most cases?

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