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Best Ranger Builds In Dark and Darker: Guide to Perks and Skills

A guide to the best Ranger builds in Dark and Darker.
Best Ranger Builds In Dark and Darker: Guide to Perks and Skills

Dark and Darker is the product of an unlikely marriage between extraction shooter gameplay and a high fantasy setting. There are 8 available classes to play as, all of which draw from classic dungeon-crawling party archetypes. This guide will take you through the best Ranger builds in Dark and Darker. This includes a rundown of aspects like the Ranger's gameplay style, weaponry, armor, and abilities. 

Note - Dark and Darker Patch 2 was released on November 22 and all eight classes have had their base attributes rebalanced to include two new attributes (Vigor & Dexterity). We'll update this build guide shortly to relfect any changes.

Ranger Class Overview

The Ranger is an agile marksman with a focus on long-range attacks and woodsy survivalist traits. In addition to their deadly bow, Rangers also have a piece of really useful gear: Hunting Traps. Once ensnared, an enemy has to take time to release themselves, so they're left a total sitting duck. Every class has its weaknesses though, and the Ranger's are its low health and limited melee options.

All Ranger Perks

Perks will passively buff your character during their entire run. You are able to take on one perk at Level 0 but you'll unlock additional perk slots at Levels 5, 10, 15, 20.

ranger_perk_1 Chase Detect recent enemy footsteps.
ranger_perk_2 Criplling Shot Hitting the target's leg reduces their movement speed by 15% for 2 seconds.
ranger_perk_3 Crossbow Mastery Increases physical damage bonus by 5% when using a crossbow, increases reload speed by 50% and movement speed by 50% when reloading.
ranger_perk_4 Enhanced Hearing Hear enemy footstep sounds from farther away.
ranger_perk_5 Kinesthesia When moving with the bowstring drawn, movement speed increases by 10%.
ranger_perk_6 Nimble Hands When using a bow increases your draw speed by 15%.
ranger_perk_7 Quick Reload Increases reload speed by 50% when reloading bow-type weapons.
ranger_perk_8 Ranged Weapons Mastery Increases physical attack power by 5% when attacking with a ranged weapon.
ranger_perk_9 Sharpshooter Headshot damage increases by 15% when attacking with a long-range weapon.
ranger_perk_10 Spear Proficiency  Grants the ability to use spears while also gaining 10 physical power while using spears.
ranger_perk_11 Trap Mastery Dramatically decreases installation time for traps.

All Ranger Skills

You can have up to two Skills at a time. During a run, Skills can be activated by pressing the 'Q' or 'E' keys. These have a short-term positive effect on your character.

skills_1 Field Ration Forage food and recover 25 HP.
ranger_skills_2 Forceful Shot Knocks targets back for 8 seconds when hitting them with a ranged weapon.
ranger_skills_3 Multishot Fire 5 arrows at once in a cone-shaped dispersion.
ranger_skills_4 Penetrating Shot Ignores the target's headshot damage reduction 50% and physical damage reduction 25% for 8 seconds.
ranger_skills_5 Quick Fire Increases the draw speed by 50% for 8 seconds while using bow-type weapons.
ranger_skills_6 Quickshot Quickly fire three arrows at once in succession at the aimed direction. 
ranger_skills_7 True Shot Projectile flight speed is greatly increased. In addition physical attack power increases by 5%.

The Best Ranger Builds

Beginner Ranger Build

Recommended loadout: When starting out, a Recurve Bow and an Arming Sword are two solid weapon options for the Ranger. The Doublet armor is a strong choice for this class as it protects the wearer while maintaining their high movement speed.

Recommended perks: Ranged Weapons Expert's 5% boost to ranged weapon attacks is a great general starter perk.

Recommended skills: Given the vulnerability of the Ranger, Field Ration is a good skill to have as a beginner. Having access to 25 HP at will is great when fights go south. Quickshot gives you the ability to quickly volley attacks at an enemy. Used at the right time, this extra damage can shift the tide of combat. 

Adept Archer Ranger Build

A classic interpretation of the Ranger class is an archer dealing out masses of damage from afar. This build totally embraces that.

Recommended loadout: As you level up, it's worth seeking out a Longbow. A Longbow deals a lot more damage than other bows but is slower in drawing and shooting.

Even as you level up, it's not worth getting very heavy-duty armor. The Ranger is a squishy class but it's best to embrace this. Keep armor light to maintain your high movement speed, allowing you to slip back to safety in any especially intense encounter. 

Recommended perks: Nimble Hands and Quick Reload help to negate the relative sluggishness of the Longbow. As you get more confident with your ability to land headshots, add Sharpshooter to one of your perk slots to inflict maximum damage. Kinesthesia aids in quickly repositioning during combat. 

Recommended skills: You can rely on Quick Fire in high-stakes moments. If you're starting to get overwhelmed by a mob, the jump up in the draw speed can take the pressure off. The AOE effect of Multishot is useful for the same reason.

Hunter Ranger Build

This build focuses on tracking and trapping enemies. Meanwhile, the polearm option gives you an extra source of damage once you've locked down your target.

Recommended loadout: In addition to a ranged weapon like a Longbow or a Crossbow, add a Spear to your inventory. While it's a melee weapon, it has an excellent range. As a result, you can deal an impressive amount of thrusting and slashing damage while keeping a safe distance. The Spear can also be used to block.

Recommended perks: Combine Enhanced Hearing and Chase to help you sus out the location of nearby enemies. Once you have this figured out, you have the choice to rush them or use Trap Mastery to allow you to speedily lay traps. One of the best placements for a trap tends to be on the other side of closed doors. Wait for unsuspecting players to traipse in and then make your move on them with Spear Mastery.

Recommended skills: Field Ration provides a quick opportunity to restore some of your health, usable up to 3 times in a run. Penetrating Shot briefly boosts the vulnerability of your targets, great for when you've caught them in a trap or backed them into a corner.