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I just got my focus abilities but I never have enough focus to use it?

Why does this happen? How is focus generated? I am a knight enchanter mage and I use spirit blade as my main spell.

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While Focus can be gained through dealing damage, it's very incremental and takes several fights to accumulate. If you want to use your Focus abilities more often, you'll need to learn combos. Combos are a form of class interaction. Each class has a set of specific CC/debuffs: Mages have Frozen and Paralyzed; Rogues have Asleep; and Warriors have Stunned. Each class has abilities that apply these debuffs, and each class has abilities that combo with these debuffs.

The latter abilities are called "detonators", you'll see them in your skill descriptions as "(something) Detonator". While you can detonate your own class debuffs, it just results in a basic combo that doesn't really do anything special and won't boost your Focus meter as much. However, if you pull off a cross-class combo (Mage Frozen into Warrior Impact Detonator, for example), you can deal tons of damage along with some special effects (the aforementioned combo does massive amounts of cold damage). You'll also increase your Focus meter much more.

  • Don't you need to pickup a skill point in the Inquisitor skill tree in order to get bonus focus from combos? – Fedor Hajdu Dec 11 '14 at 15:19
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    The inquisitor skill lets you have more focus, but everything said above still applies to generating focus even before you unlock those points. I would be curious to hear an explanation of Tier1 vs Tier2 vs Tier3 focus abilities though. That I still don't get. – gnomed Dec 11 '14 at 16:46
  • @gnomed The Focus skills typically have an explanation of what happens at each tier. Generally speaking, it's more damage or more healing. – Yuuki Dec 27 '14 at 16:20
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You can unlock the second and third tier focus abilities through the war table. Its one of the inquisition perks.

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Focus builds up over time, It takes multiple fights to build up the meter, and it doesn't go away until you spend it.

Focus is generated in combat, by dealing damage to enemies.

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You can also find and equip armor and accessories that speed up your focus gain, not only from doing combo attacks successfully.

If you're a low level there's a merchant in Val Royeaux that sells a Belt of Focus that gives about 3 or 5 % increased gain when worn.

If you manage to beat the Frostback Mountains Dragon in the Hinterlands (you can go there from the Dusklight Camp up North East) he can drop a Superior Belt of Focus that gives +30 % focus gained.

I've also found an armor called Ancient Elven Robes that gives a 10% extra focus from the Exalted Plains Map Dalish Camp South West from the Something to Prove quest, and you can loot it from Valorin's body. I'm only level 14 mage yet to find out if there's any weapon that gives a focus gain as well.

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