This is a Complete SWTOR Bodyguard Merc PvP guide. It’s suitable for both beginner players and more advanced and experienced veterans, who seek to improve their performance! Written for by Xelthìa (previously known as Kamiala) and Yashia


Table of contents

Introduction to Bodyguard

Bodyguard is the one specialization that puts all the eggs in the basket of burst-healing their teammates as much as it can. It’s not an exaggeration as it leaves the other two healer classes in the dust on that regard. Operative is the one that does a lot of sustained/heal over time and is heavily AOE oriented, and Sorcerer is a mix of the two. You, as a Mercenary healer, can save people from heavy focus comparatively easier than them.

Of course, not everything is all flowers and sunshine though. With this much potential there are also drawbacks and for a Bodyguard that is resource management. All abilities that heal, overall, are quite costly. You can’t just spam mindlessly. You, as the healer, need to spend some time learning how to control this. That can also be mitigated by knowing how to abuse certain mechanics and perks during the fights.

When it comes to defensives, Bodyguard is just an upgraded version compared to its DPS counterparts. You have almost every tool that they have plus healing. The mobility remains the same though. Average to great, at best, depending on the situations that you put yourself in.

And in utility, it is also quite the same as the other Mercenary specs. You offer the same powerful tools, with a special note on the Electro-net, a game changer ability which will be covered in the guide later. Along with that, you can also cleanse Mental effects which are key abilities when it comes to fighting and keeping the team alive.

Performance Ratings

Single target heal
Probably the strongest heal specialization out of the three when it comes to single target healing. Bodyguard is probably the only spec that can burst heal someone from the brink of death to full health in a couple of global cooldowns, and that power is just what you need to use to keep your team alive. Of course, not everything is flowers and sunshine. This potential comes at the cost that almost all of your heals will eat up your resources real quick. Then again, the guide is here to help you how to manage that.

AOE healing
Bodyguard also possesses quite strong AOE healing. Two active ones and another that works like probes, which you apply on your teammates stay. All of these can be spammed on a relatively short cooldown. Mercenary does come well equipped. However, like the single target healing, these abilities do cost a lost when it comes to resources, and you must learn how to manage that.

Survivability as a Bodyguard Mercenary is strong. It is extremely hard to take you down when you play it well. Still it will also depend on how the opponent team attacks you, how your teammates work together with you, and your positioning on the maps. All the abilities that mitigate damage are good but they come with a long cooldown, so if you are forced to burn through them it’s expected of you to utilise these as wisely as you can or, well, you won’t live that long.

Group utility
The Mercenary possesses powerful tools on top of being a powerful healer. Game changing ones at that, even. And when combined with teamwork and coordination it can become a big headache to your opponents. From offensive abilities to defensive, you’ll have plenty to play with. And if used properly, it can get you wins.

Abilities and Rotations

Healing Abilities

Progressive Scan

Progressive Scan Progressive Scan
Possibly one of the two most important abilities in the Mercenary’s ‘arsenal’. Its channelled, heals for a lot, affects up to 3 targets and, best of all, it works like a smart heal. What is a smart heal? Well, it prioritizes the targets that have the lowest health and heals them. It doesn’t change the amount on them but rather goes after the most damaged teammates on your group, including you, of course. You’ll usually want to use this as much as you can but beware that it is not cheap when it comes to Heat cost.

Kolto Missile

Kolto Missile Kolto Missile
The second most important heal ability. Very short cooldown, cheap on Heat cost, big AOE range and affects up to 8 targets. It heals for quite the chunk. Not only heals on impact, but also leaves a Heal over time for anyone that was in it during that moment but also during the time that this ability remains on the ground. It also has an annoying effect of slowing down any opponents that go into the area. A powerful tool, in many ways and you’ll find yourself spamming this the most, I believe.

Kolto Shell

Kolto Shell Kolto Shell
This is what you could call a weaker version of Kolto Probes for Operative, but still does not mean you should not use. It still heals quite a decent chunk, so don’t put it on the side. This ability works on applying stacks on a friendly groupmate or yourself and, upon taking damage, it will trigger and heal for a certain amount. Extremely cheap in the cost of Heat, you’ll want to keep this often on your groupmates, so that it helps with the healing.

Healing Scan

Healing Scan Healing Scan
Your main ‘big burst’ heal from the Bodyguard specialization. It costs a moderate amount of Heat to be used, with a fairly short cooldown but has a really long cast. You’ll usually want this to be used after Emergency Scan, as that one will give a specific buff for this to prevent the unfortunate event of being interrupted, which will happen a lot. There is also the buff from Supercharged Gas, which allows you to spam this, if you wish, without having it going into cooldown.

Emergency Scan

Emergency Scan Emergency Scan
Your big instant heal which also does not generate any Heat. It also applies a heal over time. This is one powerful ability to bring back someone from the dead and, with that, it also requires a good sense of opportunity to use. It has the perk of making your next Healing Scan be instant cast. Its cooldown is fairly long, but because it is a big heal that generates no heat you should use this whenever a target needs a bunch of heals and your Heat is above (30%?), so it can help alleviate some Heat.

Rapid Scan

Rapid Scan Rapid Scan
One of the main heals of the class. Spammable, heals somewhat decent but it is quite expensive as it generates a lot of Heat in a short time, and has short cast. Usually used as a filler, shorten the cost of Healing Scan or to generate Supercharge stacks. Outside that, its use won’t be often.

Kolto Shot

Kolto Shot Kolto Shot
Helps to vent Heat. It’s an instant freebie heal. It is usually used to help regenerate Heat, in between abilities, when not being burdened heavily by the pressure of your opponents. You don’t want to find yourself spamming this in the chance that you are high on Heat and with the Vent Heat on Cool Down.

Tool Abilities


Cure Cure
The cleanse. Used to remove negative effects such as crowd controlling effects (CCs), Hardstuns, Roots, and any other kind of debuffs that lets the opponents deal more damage on targets.

Concussion Missile

Concussion Missile Concussion Missile
Main CC. It will be used to keep some key target of the opponent team out of the fight for a while, or disrupt the teamwork from the other team altogether. Breaks on damage.

Vent Heat

Vent Heat Vent Heat
Your main resource ‘regeneration’. Should be used if Heat goes above 40%. Not immediately though. The best value to use it on would be around 50%, maybe 60%. It should be paired with the Vent Heat utility from the Skillful tier, where it vents additional 15, to offer a more leeway on how much you can abuse your abilities afterwards, as well have some alacrity buffs.

Electro Dart

Electro Dart Electro Dart
The hardstun. Should be used to save yourself, a teammate, or even to create an opportunity to kill a target of the other team.

Stealth Scan

Stealth Scan Stealth Scan
Forces any player, from the opposite team, to come out of cloak when they are inside the area. Usually used to prevent any Operatives/Scoundrels/Assassins/Shadows/Marauders/Sentinels from escaping in case you can catch them in it. It is a tool that is hard to use but pays off so much if successful.

power surge

power surge Power Surge
Your buff that makes your next ability that required time to activate to become an instant cast. Helps to prevent interrupts. Usually used on Healing Scan.

Thermal Sensor Overrides

Thermal Sensor Overrides Thermal Sensor Override
Your buff that makes your next ability Heat free. You’ll want to use this, usually, on Progressive Scan, given that it is the most expensive ability you have, aside from the offensive ones.

electro net merc

electro net merc Electro Net
Your most powerful tool to help your team secure kills on the opponents. It prevents any form of high movement, teleportation or other select few of defensives abilities. You’ll want to coordinate, or at least plan out on how, when and on who to use it, with your teammates to make it worth.

supercharged gas

supercharged gas Supercharged Gas
Your main buff that you want to use as much as you can for a few purposes. First, to help vent Heat. It lowers your current one by 10. And that is quite a lot, actually, given that often, you’ll have them real quick. Other is to bolster your overall healing, as it does increase the effects of them in every way. Lastly, to allow you to spam Healing Scan and burst heal your group and keep them alive easier. Of course, you’ll still be proned to interrupts, unless utilities that provide immunity to those were taken, or using instant casts.

Defensive Abilities


Determination Determination
Usually used to break Hardstuns, CCs and Hinder effects. Outside of that, it shouldn’t be used. It will be covered later.

Energy Shield

Energy Shield Energy Shield
The most important defensive you’ll get as a Mercenary. Straight 30% damage reduction and lasts for a long time. Paired up with the utilities that reduces its CD whenever you take damage ( Energy Rebounder ), you’ll find yourself using it quite often, along with the other that builds stacks that will heal when the shield runs out on duration ( Trauma Regulators ). And best yet is the possibility to add Interrupt immunity ( Power Shield )to it, at same time, giving you all the freedom in the world to help yourself and your team on the fight. You’ll still be hardstunned through it though. Don’t go crazy and cast this right away. It still should be used as a defensive.

responsive safeguards

responsive safeguards Responsive Safeguards
One of your big defensives. It is a quite powerful one but not entirely safe. Any sort of direct damage that you suffer will be absorbed and reflect 50% of it back. There is also the perk that any sort of tick from direct damage will heal your health by 5% and this is probably what makes it so powerful. A possible heal to full, if the other team is careless. Again, it is not a flawless defensive. Any attacks that are considered AOE will not trigger the heal or be absorbed, so don’t push your luck on being too low health and then use this. Take in the situation and if you think you can abuse it to good effectiveness, do so.

Kolto Overload

Kolto Overload Kolto Overload
The other one of the big defensives. You should always pair this up with Kolto Surge utility, given that its normal counter part is severely weaker. It will heal and keep your health at 60% for as long as it lasts. Like Responsive Safeguards, it’s a life saver but don’t push your luck when using it. Your opponents can still outdps the healing rate of it.

Rocket Out

Rocket Out Rocket Out
Your main ‘kite’ and stun resist ability. It makes your character travel 20 meters backwards from where its facing. Usually used to kite but also be abused to time perfectly wit any hardstuns or CCs that might be coming your way. It does require practice to use it. Also, it has an infamous tendency to bug and root you to the ground and make you unable to move again for the rest of the match, unless your opponents knock/pull you back, or a Sorcerer/Sage teammate of yours helps you by pulling you. If you do find yourself in this situation, ask for help right away! It is the best move.

Jet Boost

Jet Boost Jet Boost
Your knockback ability. It will mostly be used as a tool, even though its considered a defensive. It knocks away everyone around you, on a specific short range, clearing whatever was there. The part of being used as a tool is more from freeing your team from some pressure by pushing away your opponents down from some high ground, forcing them to take the long way back to rejoin the fight, or saving yourself or teammates from a dangerous situation..

Hydraulic Overrides

Hydraulic Overrides Hydraulic Overrides
Your movement impairment, knockback and pull immunity abilities. Pretty much allows you to escape and kite ‘unpunished’ from people trying to pull you into dangerous situations, getting knocked out from high places, away from your teammates or outright any attempts to root you and suffer a lot of damage without being able to do anything to escape.

Warzone Adrenal

Warzone Adrenal Warzone Adrenal
Usually used to aid in survivability, with a long cooldown (3 minutes) on it. 15% Damage reduction for 15 seconds. Should be used wisely to help survive.

Warzone Medpac

Warzone Medpac Warzone Medpac
Like the Adrenal, this will help in staying alive, but it is used in a different way. Instead of offering damage reduction to the player, it heals 35% of the health.

Key Buffs and Procs

I won’t give the full explanation of what all buffs and procs do. I will only highlight the more important ones that should be noted of.

Emergency Response
Granted at Level 28 – Eliminates the heat cost by Emergency Scan. Emergency Scan makes your next Healing Scan activate instantly. Lasts 15 seconds.
The buff to your Emergency Scan where it becomes free of cost and also buffs Healing Scan. Keep this in mind.

Kolto Residue
Granted at Level 32 – Kolto Missile leaves a residue on the area of impact, reducing movement speed by 50% for 3 seconds. Healing Scan grants Invigorated, increasing healing by 3% for 45 seconds.
Main buff to your Healing Scan, increasing the heals of the target which you used this ability on before. Plus, it also gives an annoying debuff to the opponents. Doesn’t last long but certainly annoying, given that Kolto Missile is rather spammable.

Granted at Level 36 – Increases the critical healing bonus of all heals by 5% and causes Rapid Scan to generate an extra stack of Supercharge when activated.
Increased critical heals, which is nice and, the better buff, Rapid Scan gives extra Supercharge stacks. Keep that in mind!

Critical Efficiency
Granted at Level 44 – Activating Rapid Scan grants charge of Field Triage, which reduces the cost of your next Healing Scan by 5. This stacks up to 3.
No explanation needed here. Rapid Scan pretty much helps making the Healing Scan become cheaper in Heat Cost. Spammed 3 times, will reduce the cost by 15.

Kolto Boosters
Granted at Level 52 – Reduces the cost of Kolto Missile by 5, and increases the critical heal chance of Kolto Shells by 5% and Kolto Shot regenerates 1 heat when it heals normally and 2 when it crits.
Buff to everything. Cheaper Kolto Missile, more crit to Kolto Shells and better Heat regeneration when using Kolto Shot.

Proactive Medicine
Granted at Level 64 – Emergency Scan applies Preventative Medicine to target, healing for additional X over 9 seconds and Progressive Scan increases the armor of allies by 10%.
Big buffs! Emergency Scan leaves a strong heal over time and Progressive Scan applies a buff that helps reducing damage taken on teammates.

Healing Rotation

For healing, there is not exactly a rotation for abilities. If anything, it usually works in priorities. That works the same for Bodyguard Mercenary although it will come with smart use of the heals and other abilities according to the situation.

Before fight

  1. Kolto ShellKolto Shell Kolto Shells on everyone, Supercharged Stacks, Buffs that you can apply to teammates (Invigorated & Armor buffs)
  2. Kolto BombKolto Bomb Kolto Bomb on the ground where fight will start

During fight

  1. Progressive ScanProgressive Scan Progressive Scan
  2. Kolto MissileKolto Missile Kolto Missile
  3. Healing ScanHealing Scan Supercharged Healing Scan
  4. Emergency ScanEmergency Scan Emergency Scan
  5. Kolto ShellKolto Shell Kolto Shell (When stacks are low AND when teammates don’t need big heals)
  6. Healing ScanHealing Scan Healing Scan (buffed by Emergency Scan)
  7. Rapid ScanRapid Scan Rapid Scan
  8. Kolto ShotKolto Shot Kolto Shot
  1. Progressive Scan – Basically your big main heal during the fight. It is what you will use to keep your team strong and healthy when you need the big numbers
  2. Kolto Missile – A powerful ability considering the amount it heals and how much it costs, the area it affects and the short cooldown. Use it as much as you can! An exception may occur if it is just healing one teammate alone.
  3. Supercharged Healing Scan – Under Supercharged, you’re allowed to spam this, which offers an absurdly powerful amounts of healing. It will help you keep your entire team alive or keep one teammate who is being tunneled alive
  4. Emergency Scan – Your free of cost and powerful heal – It is free and it is a strong heal BUT it has a long cooldown and it can buff your Healing Scan, as well. Usually used to offer big heals over all, as well as to manage your Heat.
  5. Kolto Shells – Like previously mentioned on how I described this ability, these work like Kolto Probes. You’ll effectively want them on your teammates as much as you want to help keep them alive.
  6. Healing Scan (buffed by Emergency Scan) – Only use it this way when Supercharge is not available. Never use it without it being buffed by Emergency Scan either. It is an enormous waste of potential heal and Heat.
  7. Rapid Scan – Your very costly and spammable heal. Be careful when using this. Usually you want to use this when everything else in on cooldown AND when you are okay when it comes to Heat.
  8. Kolto Shot – Use this either to regain or not consume any Heat.


Cure is an ability that is able to cleanse negative effects that come in the shape of Crowd Controls, Saps, Hard Stuns, Roots, Slows and Debuffs. These are distributed in 5 categories: Force, Tech, Mental, Physical and None.

    Playing as a Mercenary, the player is capable of cleansing Tech and Physical by default, and specifically playing Bodyguard will add Mental to the list. The only one that can’t be cleansed is Force, and lastly, the one type that can’t be cleansed, no matter what is ‘None’. It is the awkward one of the group. Since it has no attribute linked to it, it means that one won’t be able to cleanse it either, no matter what class they play.

    Below, I will demonstrate the symbols which they tend to take when the player sees them as debuffs on the teammates and later a list of the more relevant CC, Hardstun and others. Effects that can be seen being used the most and that is capable of cleansing, and same for the ones that cannot be.

Priority on Cleanses

The order to cleanse should go from CCs/Saps > Hard Stuns > Roots > Debuffs, but in the end the ones that you should really care about are the first 3, as the other two are relatively situational. Roots could still be important though, in the case that it helps making a good play in matches. Tanks that need to stay in range of guarded target for instance, or a teammate that is chasing an opponent. The debuff cleansing is not recommended, with the only exception being the Trauma effect.

Trauma Effect

This ‘little’ effect is a headache to a healer because it will reduce all healing by 20%, and this can change games. Snipers/Gunslingers, Marauders/Sentinels, Assassins/Shadows (with tactical) and any Tank can have the ability to apply the debuff. If you see it, try to keep it cleansed from your teammates, or at least the one that is taking most of the focus from the opponent team. There is also the headache that tanks can spam this ability quite a lot and throughout all their opponents. It is up to you to assess the situation and see if it is worth it, or not, the cleanse.

The Trauma symbol that appears on the debuff tray is this.  Trauma


Ability Cleansing List

Cleansable Non-Cleansable
Juggernaut/Guardian + Marauder/Sentinel:  
Intimidating Roar / AweRavage (with utility) / Blade Barrage (with utility)Saber Throw Backhand (Juggernaut Tank only) / Hilt Bash (Guardian Tank only)Force Choke / Force Stasis
No relevant ones Force Lift / WhirldwindElectrocute / Force StunStatic Barrier (Backlash) / Force Barrier (Kinectic Collapse)
Low SlashMind Trap / Mind Maze Whirldwind / Force LiftElectrocute / Force Stun
Electro Dart / Cryo GrenadeFlaming Fist / ShockstrikeRocket Punch (with utility) / Stockstrike (with utility)Grapple (with utility) / Harpoon (with utility) Carbonize / Neural Surge
Concussion Missile / Concussive RoundElectro Dart / Cryo GrenadeMissile Blast (with utility) / Explosive Round (with utility) Electro Net
Flashbang / Flash GrenadeMaim / Below the beltEMP Discharge / SabotageLeg Shot / NONE
Flashbang / Flash GrenadeDebilitate / Dirty KickSleep Dart / TranquilizerCreeping Slice / Shank ShotSever Tendon (even with root utility) / … (with utility) NONE

All these abilities will cause these symbols to appear on the debuff tray.

swtor bodyguard mercenary pvp - SWTOR Abilities Cleanse Debuffs Icons in PvPswtor bodyguard mercenary pvp - SWTOR Abilities Cleanse Debuffs Icons in PvP



Recommended (PvP):

-> Jet Escape : Reduces the cooldown of Jet Boost by 5 seconds, Rocket Out by 3 seconds, and Determination by 30 seconds..
Easily a mandatory utility. Reduces the cooldown of your kiting ability, knockback and your stunbreak. Its something that you want, in case you’ll get focused, which will happen quite often, given that you are a healer.

-> Gyroscopic Alignment Jets : You vent 20 Heat when stunned, immobilized, knocked down, or otherwise incapacitated. Additionally, your next Tech ability deals 10% extra damage or healing..
Possibly the last mandatory utility simply because the abilities are quite expensive to use as a Mercenary Healer. This works on every form of incapacitation. Slows, hardstuns, roots and CCs and that helps vent Heat that you might have gained before from overextending.

-> Improved Vents : Vent Heat now vents an additional 15 Heat and grants 10% alacrity for 6 seconds..
Another highly recommended utility to take on Skillful tier. Simply due to the additional heat it vents, where you can abuse a bit more above the 40% Heat threshold. And it comes with the added 10% alacrity which is always nice!

Useful (PvP)

-> Afterburners : Missile Blast immobilizes the target for 4 seconds. Direct damage caused after 2 seconds ends the effect. This effect can only occur once every 8 seconds. In addition, Jet Boost’s knockback effect is stronger and pushes enemies 4 meters further away.
Useful utility, given that it adds a larger knockback effect to your Jet Boost. Your knockback pushes your opponents further away, or even off ledges, forcing them to stay off the fight for a while, and given some breathing room to your team. It also lets you root someone for 4 seconds every 8 seconds. It can help you kite or to root opponents that are trying to get away from your team.

Situational (PvP)

-> Threat Sensors : Increases your steal detection level by 3, increases your melee and ranged defense by 3%, and reduces the cooldown of Stealth Scan by 5 seconds. Additionally, when you activate cure on yourself, all periodic damage taken is reduced by 30% for 12 seconds.
The only uses this one has is the damage reduction against any dots for 30% during 12 seconds. Sadly it only works for you and not your teammates. It still a good perk when you are against specializations that are based on dot type of damage. Still other utilities outshine it but keep in mind if that happens. That and the Stealth Scan reduce, I guess. The increase of defense against those types of damage is relying on RNG, so not that great.

-> Boresights: Increases the damage dealt by Sweeping Blasters by 25%.
Not a bad utility to take. If your team is not in trouble, you can help them by laying down some extra damage on opponents. Still unsure if it’s worth it, given that groups tend to focus single target more than everyone. You should be the judge of the situation, when taking this utility.

Useless (PvP)

 -> Heat Damping : Eliminates the Heat generated by Jet Boost, Concussion Missile, Cure, and Electro Dart
It is a generally bad utility since those abilities aren’t expensive to begin with. Not recommended at all.

-> Adhesive Supplements : Power Shot and Tracer Missile reduce the movement speed of targets they damage by 40% for 9 seconds. In addition, the slowing effect applied by Kolto Residue lasts an additional 3 seconds.
Not that great of an utility. The slowdown goes from 3 seconds to 6 seconds, and outside that, nothing more. Perhaps there could be use for it, I don’t know, but I don’t find it that strong to be worth the take over the others, really.


Recommended (PvP)

-> Energy Rebounder : When you take damage, the active cooldown of Energy Shield is reduced by 3 seconds. This effect cannot occur more than once every 1.5 seconds. In addition, when taking damage, you have a 20% chance to emit an Energy Redoubt, which lasts up to 6 seconds and absorbs damage. This effect cannot occur more than once every 10 seconds..
A must have. It reduces the cooldown of your Energy shield whenever you are hit, which will be the most important defensive cooldown. And it also offers a mini shield that absorbs a certain amount of damage every so often, whenever attacked.

-> Power Shield : Energy Shield now further decreases ability activation pushback by 30%, increases all healing received by 20%, and makes you immune to interrupts..
Useful due to the immunity on interrupts, and that is especially important for a Mercenary healer, where interrupts can actually cripple you. That and there’s also the part of increased heals when the shield is up, which is good!

-> Power Overrides : Reduces the cooldowns of Concussion Missile and Power Surge by 15 seconds each. In addition, Power Surge grants a second charge, making your next two abilities with an activation time activate instantly.
Cooldown reduction on your CC and instant cast buff. Plus, extra charge for your instant cast ability. Plus, it works as an interrupt immunity when you need to cast big heals the most.

Useful (PvP)

-> Torque Boosters : Increases the duration of Hydraulic Overrides by 4 seconds
Useful, indeed, since it bolsters your immunity to knockbacks, pulls, slows and roots. All this is to help with kiting opponents.

-> Power Barrier : Power Shot, Tracer Missile, and Rapid Scan generate a Power Barrier that increases damage reduction by 1% for up to 15 seconds. Stacks up to 5 times
Possibly useful, due to the fact you will use Rapid Scan quite often and the duration to refresh this buff is also quite long, making it possible to have free 5% damage reduction.

Situational (PvP)

-> Jet Rebounder : Activating Jet Boost generates 2 stacks of Supercharge and heals you and up to 7 other allies within 8 meters for health. In addition, Jet Boost deals 30% more damage and reduces its active cooldown by 1 second when you take damage. This cannot occur more than once every second..
It’s a situational one since it reduces the cooldown of your knockback, and don’t get me wrong, it is a powerful tool but there’s not much outside that. The heal is minor. Not enough to create a big impact in games.

-> Supercharged Reserves : Reduces the cooldowns of Cure and Disabling Shot by 3 seconds. In addition, you build up to 10 stacks of Supercharge over the course of using Recharge and Reload. This effect cannot occur more than once every 30 seconds.
CD Reduce on your interrupt and cleansing ability. That’s strong but that’s it. The other attribute of granting 10 stacks of Supercharge is not that great given that you have plenty of time to build them before the fight anyway.

Useless (PvP)

-> Pyro Shield : When activated, your Energy Shield ignites in a blaze, scorching attackers for elemental damage when they deal direct damage to you. This effect cannot occur more than once each second.
Useless utility because two reasons. The damage it deals is low and that other utilities have a much better use than this. Really, don’t take this is you are playing as healer Mercenary.


Recommended (PvP)

-> Trauma Regulators : While Energy Shield is active, you generate a stack of Trauma Regulators each time you receive direct damage. Stacks up to 10 times. When Energy Shield expires, each stack of Trauma Regulators instantly heals you for 4% of your maximum health.
A must-have, for sure. While Energy Shield is active, everytime you’re hit with direct damage it will build one those of stacks. Combine this utility with the shield cooldown reduction utility from the Masterful Tier and it makes this one of the best utility combos in the game. Of course there will be enemies who will avoid this, or they’ll just burn through as much as they can without caring. You can also click the shield off from your buff tray when you have build up stacks and heal up instantly.

-> Kolto Surge : Kolto Overload Triggers at, and can heal you up to, 60% of your maximum health. Additionally, Kolto Overload lasts 2 seconds longer and heals for twice as much each time it restores health.
Another must have, since it bumps up your Kolto Overload from 35% to 60% and it doubles the tick rate, keeping you much safer. Of course, its still risky to go too low on health, even with this. A must have anyway!

Useful (PvP)

-> Stabilized Armor : Reduces damage taken from area effects by 30%. Additionally, while stunned, you take 30% less damage from all sources.
Another useful utility, where it reduces damage after being stunned. Works really well when you’re the focus target of the opponent team.

-> Thrill of the Hunt : Allows Unload, Blazing Bolts, and Progressive Scan to be activated while moving..
A very useful utility, given that it bolsters your mobility altogether. I find myself often moving around a lot and a mobile healer is an annoying healer to the DPS of the opponent team, so this helps out in that regard.

-> Supercharged Defense : Activating Supercharged Gas increases your defense by 15% and grants immunity to interrupts for 8 seconds. In addition, your endurance is increased by 3% and all healing received is increased by 3%.
Another very useful one, given that it offers an increase on your health pool, increased healing that you receive, +15% defense to every type of attack and gives interrupt immunity whenever you activate Supercharged Gas, which you will have up quite often! Pretty undervalued utility and very fun to use.

Situational (PvP)

-> Smoke Screen : Rocket Out generates Smoke Screen when used, keeping you from being leapt to or pulled and making you immune to interrupts and ability activation pushback for the next 4 seconds. In addition, taking melee or Tech damage within 4 seconds of previously using Rocket Out refreshes its cooldown. These effects cannot occur more than once every 40 seconds.
Useful utility when facing a lot of melee classes. Especially if they target you heavily. It simply doesn’t let you be leapt to for a while, and makes you immune to interrupts. And there is the chance that they might regenerate the stack of Rocket Out when hitting you within those 4 seconds after using it. A win in a lot of situations. Sadly, it goes to the Situational tier given the fact that the defensive ability has a really long cooldown on and since it won’t be as strong when you’re not facing melee classes.

-> Tag and Bag : Hindering a target with Electro Net grants Tag and Bag, increasing your Alacrity by 15% for 9 seconds. Additionally, Supercharged Gas reduces the cooldown of Kolto Overload by 5 seconds.
This one is situational, despite giving great benefits. Alacrity boost of 15% is amazing and you can stack it with other buffs. It greatly improves your overall casting speed for that short time, but the cooldown on your Electro Net is too long to abuse this. The other perk is also great. Every time you use Supercharged, the Kolto Overload is reduced by 5 seconds, which helps defensively, but it still is at a slow pace.

Useless (PvP)

-> Battlefield Protocols : Stealth Scan grants Battlefield Protocols, increasing the damage or healing dealt by your next non-channeled direct damage or healing ability by 20%. For each target revealed from stealth, you generate an additional charge of Battlefield Protocols. This effect stacks up to 5 times and lasts for up to 10 seconds.
Very bad utility for healer, given that you’d give away your GCDs for a tiny chance to uncloak stealthers. It may be a situational utility for a DPS, given that their job is to take care of opponents but as a healer? You gain nothing by that, hence the useless part.

Utilities chart and my choice

I am going to leave a screenshot with the highlighted utilities that go from green to red and what I think its most beneficial to when you’re playing with Bodyguard.

  • Green = Mandatory
  • Yellow = Useful
  • Orange = Situational
  • Red = Useless
swtor bodyguard mercenary pvp - Utility Tree - Mercswtor bodyguard mercenary pvp - Utility Tree - Merc

My build tends to be this:

  • Skillful: Jet Escape + Improved Vents + Gyroscopic Alignment Jets
  • Masterful: Energy Rebounder + Power Shield + Pick between Torque Boosters, Power Barrier, Supercharged Reserves, Power Overrides and Afterburners ( from Skillful tier )
  • Heroic: Trauma Regulators + Kolto Surge + Pick between Stabilized Armor, Thrill of the Hunt and Supercharged Defense

Example Builds

I’ll include two different example utility builds. Both of these are viable in their own way, but they are suited to different playstyles and different game situations. Ofcourse there are other options for other situations, which I could include upon request.

Strong defensive build
This build will enable you to stand strong and eat more damage. The downside is that you have less mobility, but the stronger defensives make up for that in most situations.

swtor bodyguard mercenary pvp - Strong defensive buildswtor bodyguard mercenary pvp - Strong defensive build

Strong mobility build
This build will enable you to kite better, especially when combined with the Running Restoration tactical. You will be super mobile and will have an easier time running away from enemies. The downside of this build is that you will take 30% more damage while stunned, but in situations where (melee) dps are constantly on top of you the mobility build might be the better option.

swtor bodyguard mercenary pvp - Strong mobility buildswtor bodyguard mercenary pvp - Strong mobility build

Used the Calculator for the two images above.

Gearing and Stats

I am going to give a brief explanation on which Bonus Sets/Tacticals generally work, along with brief description how to reach the desired stats and Best In Slot on the gearing, in terms of mods and the like. I will give versions with the new augments first and after that, in case you lack credits/crafting materials to buy specific things, I will also give an alternative with cheaper augments.

Warning regarding gear:

  1. All Armorings, Mods and Enhancements can be moved around on all characters unlike the previous patch, which is a thing that you no longer need to be careful about.
  2. On the other hand, you have to be careful when buying gear. It cannot be refunded at the vendors once purchased. Even with how easy it is to grind things now and same to be said about credits, it doesn’t mean that it can be just shrugged off because other details, like amplifiers as they are a credit sink.
  3. All forms of Gear are considered Legacy (Not Cartel Market or low level world drops on planets though).

Stats for PvP

Gearing in PvP comes in different tastes. One can stack low Alacrity, high Critical and others stack high Alacrity with rest dumped into Critical.

Although I will explain what is generally needed:

  • +3208 for 2nd Alacrity threshold builds with as much Critical Rating you can have.
  • The best Mods on 6.0, at the moment, are the unlettered R-2, unlettered R-3 and unlettered R-5 but unlettered and unnumbered version work just fine;
  • The best Armorings, Barrels and Hilts are the unlettered and unnumbered and unlettered R-1 versions.

Below I will display how the stats can be best achieved.

  • Earpiece and Implants will be considered as Enhancement as they give the same stats.
  • I am using the 274 Augments from patches/updates but I will provide the BiS as much as I can, including the new 300 augments and the old versions of 228 versions.
  • Relics will usually be the ones that give Mastery (Focused Retribution) and Power (Serendipitous Assault), although the Critical(Devastating Vengeance) can be picked on 1,3s GCD build.
  • Crystals will always be +41 critical stat (Eviscerating).
  • It is highly recommended that you get the companion bonuses, otherwise some stats may not match
  • Screenshot below to show what I mean. It can be found in the legacy window on the Global Unlocks Tab, following with Imperial Classes/Republic Classes.
swtor bodyguard mercenary pvpswtor bodyguard mercenary pvp

 The example in the screenshot, Imperial Agent players(Sniper/Operative) need to finish Scorpio story companion and/or max affection to have access to the bonus from her. It gives exactly 1% extra on accuracy. It is not accumulative with other companions from other classes.

High Alacrity with Low Crit

Gear in 306 rating + Advanced Augments 74 ( 286 ):

  • Alacrity – 3208+ It gives 1,3s Global Cooldowns
    – 6 Enhancements (+431 each – Unlettered and Unnumbered version
    – 6 Augments (+108 each)
    – 5 Enhancements (+431 each – Unlettered and Unnumbered version)
    – 10 Augments (+108 each)
    – 7 Enhancements (+431 each – Unlettered and Unnumbered version)
    – 2 Augments (+108 each)
  • Critical
    – Rest of the Enhancements (+431 – Unlettered and Unnumbered version)
    – Rest of Augments (+108 each)
    – Crystals (+41 each)
    – Advanced Kyrprax Proficient Stim (+109)

Gear in 306 rating + Advanced Augments 77 ( 300 )

  • Alacrity – 3208+ (It gives 1,3s Global Cooldowns)
    – 6 Enhancements (+431 each – Unlettered and Unnumbered version)
    – 5 Augments (+130 each)
    – 5 Enhancements (+431 each – Unlettered and Unnumbered version)
    – 9 Augments (+130 each)
    – 4 Enhancements (+431 each – Unlettered and Unnumbered version)
    – 1 Enhancement (+451 – Savant R-1)
    – 8 Augments (+130 each)
    – 7 Enhancements (+431 each – Unlettered and Unnumbered version)
    – 2 Augments (+130 each)
  • Critical
    – Rest of the Enhancements (+431 – Unlettered and Unnumbered version)
    – Rest of Augments (+130 each)
    – Crystals (+41 each)
    – Advanced Kyrprax Proficient Stim (+109)

Gear in 306 rating + Advanced Augments 45 ( 228 ):

  • Alacrity – 3208+ (It gives 1,3s Global Cooldowns)
    – 6 Enhancements (+431 each – Unlettered and Unnumbered version)
    – 7 Augments (+96 each)
    – 5 Enhancements (+431 each – Unlettered and Unnumbered version)
    – 11 Augments (+96 each)
    – 7 Enhancements (+431 each – Unlettered and Unnumbered version)
    – 2 Augments (+96 each)
  • Critical
    – Rest of the Enhancements (+431 – Unlettered and Unnumbered version)
    – Rest of Augments (+96 each)
    – Crystals (+41 each)
    – Advanced Kyrprax Proficient Stim (+109)


When it comes to amplifiers, there’s truly only one viable option. Med Tech. It bolsters all your heals without any exception. Your specialization isn’t too focused on having a lot of heal over time abilities, like Operative, to abuse Periodic Restoration; And using the one that bolsters only AOE heals is pointless, given that it was never good to begin with on PvP.

Med Tech is the one to go for and that’s it! It is the same case for PvE, which makes things easier when gearing up.

Bonus Sets

Concentrated FireConcentrated Fire Concentrated Fire
2p : +2% Mastery.
4p : Damaging an enemy or healing an ally has a 10% chance to generate a stack of Supercharge. Cannot occur more than once every 5 seconds.
6p : Activating Supercharged Gas makes your next Rail Shot, Mag Shot, or Emergency Scan automatically critically hit or heal.
The best set for Bodyguard Mercenary. It allows you to gain extra stacks of Supercharge just by healing or dealing damage, which helps with Heat Management, and given the uptime of heals that you’ll often have it will be an extremely powerful tool for you. That and the bonus set also offers you a neat perk, giving an autocrit heal on your Emergency Scan (or an autocrit Rail Shot) whenever you use Supercharged Gas.
Tech MedicTech Medic Tech Medic
2p : +2% Mastery.
4p : Onboard AED becomes an instant-cast..
6p : Kolto Shot leaves Lasting Meds on its target, restoring health over 18 seconds.
This set is comparably weaker. You’re trading some very useful help on your Heat management and an autocrit Emergency Scan heal for a weak heal over time on your Kolto Shot. Does this mean it’s a terrible set? No, but it is not recommended. It would be something that you could use for fun or while you’re still building your second CF bonus set, but outside of that, it is a loss. And the instant combat revive (Onboard AED) is something that you’ll probably never do in Unranked PvP, which, in case you did not know, you can do there. Note that you can’t use this at all on Arena maps (4v4s).


On this topic only three Tacticals will be covered, as the others, class specific or not, are generally useless for Bodyguard. And of course, a small description of each.

SC-4 Treatment ScannerSC-4 Treatment Scanner SC-4 Treatment Scanner
Equip: Progressive Scan heals for an additional 5% and generates Supercharge stacks while channeled, up to 4 stacks for a completed channel.
Source: Flashpoints and Fleet Vendor.
Your best tactical, by far. It makes one of your main heals stronger. That is quite a good perk but the best is what comes after that. And that is helping with building Supercharge stacks whenever Progressive Scan is casted. Given that Mercenary heals is heavy when it comes to resource consumption, building Supercharged Gas more often will help out with the Heat management.
Running Rapid RestorationRunning Rapid Restoration Running Restoration
Equip: Healing Scan can be activated while moving and heals for an additional 15%.
Source: Operations.
This tactical is your second best one, although considerably weaker, given that it doesn’t help with the Heat management. It just makes your Healing Scan stronger and you can cast it while moving (and that includes when using Supercharged Gas). It is good, but not as great as SC-4. Then again, it can still be abused under certain situations. You still want the SC-4 though.
Rocket Fuel VaporsRocket Fuel Vapors Rocket Fuel Vapors
Equip: Kolto Pods last a second longer and heal for an additional 5%.
Source: Flashpoints.
The weakest of the three, by an enormous margin. RFV basically gives a little extra heal over time to Kolto Missile, which is absurdly weak. And you shouldn’t have problems when it comes to this regard, really. Perhaps useful for PvE? PvP though? Definitely not.

PvP Essentials

Finally, the last topic! What I am going to cover here are some things that in theory, they look like basic stuff, but they are hard to execute. Having a general class knowledge is a good extra for this but I will help nevertheless and mention them anyway. This, of course, will need to be practiced, as well.

  1. Resolve and Stunbreak
  2. Positioning and Kiting
  3. Guard
  4. Friendly Abilities/Buffs

Resolve and Stunbreak

An important topic. After all, the healer is the one that keeps the team alive through recovering their health. The opponent team will very often try to CC to kill off teammates or hardstun while CCing the others to secure the kill on you or teammates. This is a thing that the healer wants to avoid. And for that, one needs to know about these two things.

What is Resolve?

Resolve is a ‘resource’ that fills up whenever the player gets hardstunned / CC’d / sapped / pulled / pushed / knockbacked, and the amount it builds depends according to what kind of ability was used and its duration. When Resolve is full, you gain immunity to any other effects of this kind. Any root effects during full Resolve will instead become a Slow effect and regular Slow and Debuff effects will still work. On an extra note, Roots, Slows and Debuffs do not build Resolve.

It usually takes about 2 Hardstuns, 2 CC’s or 1 of each to completely fill it. When this happens, the player should make the most of it to kite, heal teammates, get a better position and so on.

However, some people can make moves and planning to manage this aspect on their opponents to ‘fit in’ more with their strategy before completing it. Krea has covered this topic rather well! I recommend checking out his guide about it!

Below there are pictures of how resolve looks like in the UI. There is also an option to turn the Resolve bar on below the nameplates.

swtor 6.0 medicine operative pvpswtor 6.0 medicine operative pvp

No resolve – As it can be seen, the lay out is completely black on it. Means that no hardstuns were applied yet.

swtor 6.0 medicine operative pvpswtor 6.0 medicine operative pvp

Mid resolve – The 3 bars can be noticed in it. Means a hardstun/CC or other abilities were used to accumulate up to that much.

swtor 6.0 medicine operative pvpswtor 6.0 medicine operative pvp

Full resolve – When the bar looks white like that, means its full, thus immunity is given.

swtor 6.0 medicine operative pvpswtor 6.0 medicine operative pvp

Full resolve depleting – And, of course, this effect does not last forever. Make it count!

When to use a Stunbreak

Usually, it’s used to save teammates or yourself when in trouble. One thing that one can take note of is that when under the stun/CC/Sap effects, the only highlighted ability in your quickbars will be your stunbreak. It doesn’t mean that you must use it, because there is a really long cooldown on it and can only be used once on it, and keep in mind, it is the most important DCD available. I will give some basic “guidelines” when to use it.

Value your stunbreak.

Just as I mentioned, it is your most important defensive cooldown and doing a bad management of it changes everything. The opponents can get the upper hand later in the fight by locking you on more CCs and stuns later into the fight when your Resolve is back to zero again. Trust on your teammates to use their defensive cooldowns to stay alive until you get cleansed or the effects wear off.

Avoid breaking stuns/CCs before having full Resolve.

Breaking without being a full resolve is generally a bad idea since the opponents can follow it up with another stun and that leaves you doing nothing for a while, and if you are on full Resolve they can’t do that to you.

Pay attention to Electro Net (Mercenary and Commando) and Gore (Carnage Marauder) / Lance (Combat Sentinel)

These are the tools of nightmare as they will prevent you from using any high mobility ability (Rocket Out) that you have and that means you won’t be able to get away from your opponents if you get in trouble.

It is a troublesome thing to any healer that is in danger.  This is peculiarly troublesome for Operatives/Scoundrels, but the same still applies to us, Mercenaries, even though our arsenal of defensive tools is better. Sorcerer/Sage can use stunbreak to get rid of Hinder effect and in the case they get stunlocked after, they still have access to their immunity barrier and phasewalk to prevent death on stunlocks and we can use our Reflect Shield/Kolto Overload to mitigate anything of that kind.

 The hinder effect from the Marauder/Sentinel spec is different given that it lasts 1,5 seconds but its relatively spammable every few seconds compared to the Mercenary/Commando that lasts around 9 seconds but can only be used once every minute and half.

How to counter these effects? Either stay within Guard Range of the Tank of your group or be close to a spot where you can hide/stay out of sight from the opponent team. And there’s this other characteristic about the Mercenary/Commando Net. The more one moves, the more stacks it builds, and the more stacks, the more damage it does.

The opponents will be looking to use this and expect you to use Stunbreak. It should be used preferably if under full Resolve. Breaking the effect without any Resolve is a pretty big gamble, since you will have to hope on having good teammates that can save you. And if that is the case, use other defensive abilities combined to survive any type of focus that could come in a stunlock.

Never use a stunbreak to get rid of Root effects

This matters a lot. Please do not do this. You can use Hydraulic Overrides for this, as it also cleanses its effect. Cure can be used for most of them, except if it is a Force based ability. Only then, just Hydraulic Overrides can clear it.


Position in the map is crucial when you need to make an escape or at least break Line of Sight from the enemy team that is after you. Even though I covered this on the Scoundrel/Operative Healer guides, this still applies to Mercenary. Try to always have an object close by to hide behind so that the opponents are forced to go around it or walk all the way to get to you. If that is done well, the opponents will have a much harder time killing you and your team.      

Here are some pictures with examples of good positions when the fight happens and that you can hide behind on when you suddenly become the target. The numbers will represent the situations.

  • Red cross – where the group fight happens
  • Green circle – Position that the healer should take.
swtor bodyguard mercenary pvp - Voidstarswtor bodyguard mercenary pvp - Voidstar
swtor bodyguard mercenary pvpswtor bodyguard mercenary pvp
swtor bodyguard merc pvpswtor bodyguard merc pvp


There are a few situations that can be the exceptions, where you will be able to stand out, even still not exactly recommended, and remain ‘safe’ for most of the fight.

  1. That is when you’re up against teams that have a playstyle that revolve around using DoTs and AOE intensive attacks, like Engineer Sniper/Saboteur Gunslinger, Lethality Operative/Ruffian Scoundrel, Hatred Assassin/Serenity Shadow and more like that. That is done so that you can take advantage of their attacks and never get CC’d, and this will allow you to maximize the uptime of your healing for your team. Letting their attacks tick on you and denying any kind of suppression.
  2. There is also the situation where you have to stay close to your team and if you are the target and if there’s no spot where you can run to, you may have no other choice but to stay close to them.

If the fights can happen close to map props that you can hide behind AND you can take advantage of these aspects, then it becomes the best-case scenario for you. It’s a receipt for CC immunity and access to teamwork.


What is Kiting? Running away from the opponents to survive. Its related on how you position yourself on the game, and that is why I hooked it up on the same topic. When you kite, you usually want to stand around some object where you can be a nuisance to the others by forcing them to move to reach you out and that gives time to your teammates to aid you. And while you do this, it is highly recommended to heal yourself up and use defensive abilities and other tools, such as Electro Dart and Concussion Missile to help survive. Rocket Out can also be used in here to escape from a tricky situation to a place ‘far’ from the fight.

Using Defensives

What if you are the target and are being overwhelmed? Well, you can still use your defensives to last long enough to kill or at least help in lowering the health of an opponent, and hopefully outlast them so you receive potential help from your team before you go down. You’re a Commando, and you have access to some of the tankiest abilities in the game that can change the outcome of the match just by lasting longer, which was a compensation for your “bad” mobility, but in 6.0 it is not an issue anymore due to all the dashes and roots that you have access to.

Avoid using multiple defensives at a time! One by one is more than enough, but you also need to read the situation. Example: You’ll have to guess if your opponents will or won’t hit your Responsive Safeguards, which can potentially heal a lot or nothing at all. And in the second case, you’ll see yourself forced to use Adrenaline Rush or find yourself relying on teammates or something else to survive.

Energy Shield

Energy Shield should be used when you still have quite some HP but expect to receive a lot of damage over the next couple of seconds. If you use this while you’re already low the enemy dps might kill you through it. When you combine it with the Trauma Regulators utility it heals you for a large amount when it ends, so if you almost die while having your Energy Shield up and you already build a lot of Trauma Regulators stacks you can right-click Energy Shield off off your buff tray and it will heal you instantly. Ofcourse this means that Energy Shield ends aswell.

Responsive Safeguards

When do I use Responsive Safeguards? You should try to save this one as long as you can: it is the only defensive you can use while being stunned. And that should be the moment when you use this: when you are already relatively low on health, you get stunned, and you see a lot of damage incoming on you. If you haven’t used an other defensive before you got stunned then Responsive Safeguards will be the only thing that can save you from dying. Try to use this before you’re as low as 10%, because if the enemy dps are aware of your reflect they will use AOE or DOTs and they could still kill you through your defensive. That is why it is important to know which abilities can be reflected by Responsive Safeguards. Well, it’s easy to tell, really. If it is an AOE (which is usually visible) or DOTs, then you can’t count on them triggering your reflect. As long as they are not one of those two types, you’re good to go. Anything else will do it. Ranged, melee, tech, force, kinetic and even internal. And there is quite the advantage of knowing this. When you’re being jumped on and focused by a lot of opponents someone is bound to make a mistake, even if it’s a sliver of one, it can be enough to heal up a bit. I can update this topic to include the attacks if requested.

Kolto Overload

This ability can counter a whole lot of incoming damage, but only if you’re below 60% health (when combined with the Kolto Surge utility). You should use this ability when you’re around 30% and you see a big chunk of damage incoming. You can also use it pre-emptively since it will only start when you drop below 60%. Make sure to only use it when you really expect big damage though, otherwise it will trigger from just a small amount of damage and then run out since no one else damages you. Also don’t use this too late, when you’re around 10% or lower, since classes with very big burst damage (for instance Tactics Vanguards) might kill you through it when they focus on you with multiple players.


What abilities can be reflected by Responsive Safeguards? Well, it is easy to tell, really. If it is an AOE, which is usually visible, and dots, then you can’t count on them triggering your reflect. Anything else will do it. Ranged, melee, tech, force, kinetic and even internal. As long as they are not of those two types, you’re good to go. And there is quite the advantage of knowing this. When you’re being jumped on and focused by a lot of opponents someone is bound to make a mistake, even if it’s a sliver of one, it can be enough to heal up a bit. I can update this topic to include the attacks, if requested.

Electro Net

Now comes the Electro Net. Easily the most important tool you have. It deserves its own topic. Why? Like I mentioned in the ability list, this prevent the use of any high mobility abilities, such as rolls from Operatives/Scoundrels and Snipers/Gunslingers; dashes from Marauders/Sentinels, Juggernauts/Guardians and Mercenaries/Commandos, Phasewalks from Sorcerers/Sages and Snipers/Gunslingers; Combat stealth from Marauders/Sentinels, Assassins/Shadows and Operatives/Scoundrels, immunity abilities like Barriers from Sorcerers/Sages, any form of leap, like Intercede from Guardians/Juggernauts, Leap from Marauders/Sentinels, Juggernauts/Guardians and Powertech/Vanguards, or teleport to targets like Assassins/Shadows and Operatives/Scoundrels.

That’s a big, sure, and perhaps I could have summarized it, but this shows how much power the Electro Net has during a match. It can be a deciding factor to deliver killing blows and win matches and knowing when to use it is that very key to success. Still, this is not an almighty ability without counter. Opponents can overturn this effect and allow them to use the same abilities but at the cost of using their Stunbreak. This means, as well, that they can be hardstunned after and they, most likely, won’t be able to escape that.

Now, when should you use it and help secure kills? There are various ways you can abuse it. If your team has immense damage potential in a short time and you can play in synchrony, you can do a fast apply of it immediately on sight on a full health target and blitz it. Another is to apply early again, the net and burn them quick enough that makes them panic and use stunbreak and follow that up with hardstuns so that they can no longer escape. A third option is waiting for the opponent to waste the stunbreak from using on hardstuns to stay free and later apply net and not allow them to escape too far and die there, possibly.

As you can see, this tool requires some thought to be used well and not just randomly throw it and expect it to do its work. Using it with teamwork is the best you can do.

Doing Damage as Healer

Now, outside that, you may ask as to what you can do besides being a ‘tanky’ class with big healing and supporting? Well, you can help your team doing DPS.

Yes, there will be occasions where it is possible to help your team with that. Whenever your team is free from any type of heavy focus AND when the opponent team has been ‘crippled’ by being away from the main target of your team, or have been put out of the fight by crowd control effects, you should offer your help in killing the main target of your team. It will always help killing the opponents faster. After all, it will just mean that there will be less threats for your team to deal with.

If you want a bit of help of what to do when it comes to this, here you have a rotation for single target and another for AOE.

Single Target

  1. rail shotrail shot Rail Shot – This is your strongest DPS ability that you have as a healer, so it is not hard to guess that you want to get this off as soon as you can.
  2. UnloadUnload Unload – If you have time to land something else other than Rail Shot, then definitely will be this. It is costly but it is manageable over its duration. Nonetheless, watch your Heat.
  3. Power ShotPower Shot Power Shot – If you want to risk it all, after using the other two and the target is close to being dead and your team is all okay, and believe that risking is worth it, spam this. This will be the ‘death’ of your resource management though. Don’t forget it.
    rapid shotsrapid shots Rapid shots – The freebie attack for when you don’t want to risk losing pace of your Heat management and you still want to deal damage.

Multiple Targets

  1. death from abovedeath from above Death from Above – This is your strongest DPS ability when it comes to deal AOE damage. And that holds truth for all specializations, unless you count the DPS specific AOE tacticals, of course. Expensive on Heat cost but still deals good damage.
  2. Explosive DartExplosive Dart Explosive Dart – An explosive that you place on the target and takes a few seconds to detonate. If you have time, you may even want to use this before Death from Above and deal all the damage together. It is relatively cheap, but the damage is not that fantastic either. It still helps though.
  3. sweeping blasterssweeping blasters Sweeping Blasters – Your absurdly expensive and spammable AOE attack. Use this only after the other two have been used. And just like Power Shot, if you’re going to use it, expect your Heat to go wild and out of control, assuming you use it multiple times.

Guard Mechanic

The infamous Guard. An ability that is both hated and loved by many. It is something that will just bolster your team’s lifespan massively. Your tank can cast this on you or your teammates and 50% of all damage that you take will be redirected to it. You’ll recognize it by seeing the symbol on your or your healing target’s buff tray.

Guard orangeGuard orange

This ability has a limit of range of 15 meters from your tank, and when that happens, the damage no longer will be redirected. So do mind how far you are from your teammate when Guard is on you. And it is recognizable when a second symbol appears on the side of the Guard Symbol.

Guard alone, as well, also gives a 5% Damage Reduction buff to the target although I am not sure if it applies on PvP when out of Guard range. It should be considered that healing priority targets also change when there is a class that can Guard in play. Also, classes that have access to Guard but play as DPS will receive a -50% penalty and that can hinder the team’s DPS while bolstering survivability, something that a tank is not affected by.

Teammates Abilities and Buffs

I will only cover the more obvious buffs that are deployable on the field. Any other buffs that appear on the buff tray are related to the other classes won’t be covered but I can always answer any questions in the comments if requested.

Ballistic Shield (Sniper) / Scrambling Field (Gunslinger)

AOE shield that gives +20% Damage Reduction to any teammates that stand inside it. Just stay inside it to benefit from it.

swtor bodyguard merc pvpswtor bodyguard merc pvp

Diversion (Sniper / Gunslinger)

This AOE ability can give a -45% accuracy debuff that affects all types of damage. If your teammate uses it, stand inside it to benefit from its effects. Although doing this may prove inefficient if the opponent team is composed mostly of Ranged classes.

swtor bodyguard merc pvpswtor bodyguard merc pvp

Oil Slick (Powertech) / Riot Gas (Vanguard)

This one works like Sniper/GS Diversion, although slightly weaker and only works on Ranged and Melee attacks, around but comes with the bonus of slowing down the opponents. The greatest aspect of this one is the fact that it applies 75% slow effect on any opponent inside it.

Deflection (Assassin Tank / Shadow Tank)

This ability from tank spec variants have the attribute of reducing the damage from opponents by 15% on Force and Tech damage. If the other team has melee players, stay inside it so that they are also forced to stay inside it, thus less damage taken.

swtor bodyguard merc pvpswtor bodyguard merc pvp


I’d like to thank Vulkk for the opportunity to put up the guide; and the people at SWTOR Theorycraft Discord channel for the tools and clarification of annoying bits that exist in the game.


I’m known as Kamiala, from Darth Malgus, although currently I have renamed to Xelthìa there ( in case you add Kamiala there, it won’t be me ) , and Xelthìa, from Star Forge. Author of the Lethality Operative and Ruffian Scoundrel Guides.

Passionate player who loves to play SWTOR. Main Lethality and Ruffian player, mostly on PvP but with quite the good time dedicated into PvE content, as well. Despite not being my main class, I still have a considerable experience when it comes to playing Combat Medic Commando and Bodyguard Mercenary and had some tips here and there to improve at it.

I appreciate the enormous help that Yashia has offered me in making this guide into a thing!


I am mostly known as Yashia Kando or Durwell Kando from <Take a Seat> on Darth Malgus (and The Red Eclipse before it). Kamiala asked me to assist in writing this guide because I have mained Commando/Mercenary heals since the beginning, and have since done NiM/MM Ops raids with some of the best teams in game, have both Solo Ranked and Team Ranked experience since Season 4, and reached Top 3 Mercenary as a healer while playing against some of the best PvPers around. (For video’s you can check out my YouTube!)

I would like to thank Kamiala for the opportunity to co-write a guide about my favourite class and to hopefully give new players useful information on how to get better at playing this class! For any questions do not hesitate to mail me in-game on either Yashia or Durwell Kando.

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