Best Excalibur Umbra Build – Warframe Excalibur Build – 2021

Best Excalibur Umbra Build Warframe

Best Excalibur Umbra Build – Warframe Excalibur Build – 2021

Excalibur is not only one of the three starter Warframes but also the third most played Warframe in general. And that doesn’t even include Excalibur Umbra who is number five on the list, too! For all you sword-swinging Excalibur players out there, here is the best Excalibur Umbra build with a fitting beginner Excalibur build.


  1. Overview: Best Excalibur Umbra Build
    1. Howl’s Stealth Damage Bonus
    2. Exalted Blade and why it is awesome
    3. Build Requirements
  2. Best Excalibur Umbra Build
    1. Ability Strength on Excalibur Umbra
    2. Ability Duration, Efficiency & Howl
    3. The Aura Question + Exilus
  3. Best Arcanes for Excalibur Umbra
  4. Best Exalted Blade Builds
  5. Beginner Excalibur Build
  6. End Note

Overview: Best Excalibur Umbra Build

My Excalibur Umbra build is based around Excalibur’s Exalted Blade (4) in combination with Howl (2) and here’s why:

Howl’s Stealth Damage Bonus

We all know Howl (or Radial Blind on regular Excalibur) blinds enemies around you and most of us know that it also opens enemies up to finishers. These two things are already great as they help with survivability and allow you to one-shot high priority targets like Bombards. But there’s more. What most people don’t know about Howl is that it actually triggers stealth damage bonus, too! While enemies are blinded, you are considered to be in stealth because they cannot detect you. As a result, you gain 700% damage bonus on all your attacks and not just finishers! Unfortunately, it stacks additively with critical hits rather than multiplicatively.

Simply with the press of one button, enemies stop attacking you and you receive a huge damage bonus. I hope you understand why I consider Howl an immensely important ability and why this is reflected in the build.

Exalted Blade and why it is awesome

Chromatic Blade Augment Mod for Best Excalibur Umbra Build

The Exalted Blade is Excalibur’s and Excalibur Umbra’s signature ability and really encapsulates their swordsman nature. For us, it is the backbone of the best Excalibur Umbra build. Its versatility and damage output is one of the best in Warframe. Especially the Chromatic Blade augment seperates it from regular melee weapons as it is affected by Abiltiy Strength. This means that both, base damage as well as status chance of Exalted Blade, are now affected by Ability Strength. Not to mention that you can fully mod the Exalted Blade on top of that! Well, let’s finally get into the build:

Build Requirements

  • 1 Forma
  • Exilus Adapter

Best Excalibur Umbra Build

Best Excalibur Umbra Build Modding Guide Warframe

Ability Strength on Excalibur Umbra

As I already touched on above, Ability Strength is important in two ways: Firstly, Exalted Blade’s damage and secondly, status chance from Chromatic Blade. This build has less Ability Strength than many other ones out there but I am arguing that 201% is a great sweet spot. First things first, it is cheap. Umbral Intensify is a must anyway so you only need to add Augur Secrets for 7 capacity points.

If you want more Ability Strength, you would need to use corrupted mods with huge negative stats meaning you either sacrifice Efficiency because of Blind Rage or Duration due to Transient Fortitude. We don’t want either of that since this build is based around Howl, too. Furthermore, 201% Ability Strength is the perfect amount to push the status chance of our Exalted Blade over 100% without any mods (it’s 105,4% to be exact).

Blind Rage Warframe 2
Transient Fortitude Warframe 3

In short, we have all the status chance we need, we don’t destroy our energy management with negative stats and we keep the build cheap at only a single Forma.

Ability Duration, Efficiency & Howl

Fleeting Expertise Warframe

I already know that many of you will be sceptical about Fleeting Expertise. Let me explain:

Since we aren’t using corrupted mods for our Ability Strength, we can leave out Flow but only if we take our energy consumption seriously. Fleeting Expertise basically turns Duration into Efficiency which reduces the cost of Howl tremendously. Furthermore, the activation cost of Exalted Blade and its energy drain is lowered, too, because Efficiency weighs more than Duration. With Howl only costing 20 energy and Exalted Blade 10 to activate and 0,8 to upkeep, our small pool of energy isn’t a problem.

Apart from Exalted Blade’s energy drain, Duration only affects how long enemies are blinded by Howl. With 95% Duration we still blind for 14,3 seconds which should be plenty to kill a whole room with Exalted Blade and Stealth Damage bonus. And if not, it only costs 20 energy to reactivate so that’s not a problem, either.

The Aura Question + Exilus

Primed Sure Footed Warframe

Steel Charge is quite an obvious aura as Exalted Blade is considered to be melee and thus receives bonus damage from it. Another contestor would be Corrosive Projection as it is mostly a higher damage increase than Steel Charge but only when facing armored enemies like Grineer. Unfortunately, we only have three capacity points left on this build but need four to use Corrosive Projection. So either you add another Forma, use a mod that isn’t fully maxed, or you use a different Exilus Mod.

Speaking of which, the Exilus mod often only makes a minor difference. This time, though, Primed Sure Footed is frankly awesome as it makes you immune to any kind of knockbacks including your own ones and grappling hooks from Ancients or Scorpions.

The downside is that you need to log in for 400 days to get it. So if you don’t have it yet, one of the Drift mods is usually the best option but as I said, it doesn’t make a huge difference so it depends on your preference which one you want to use. If you still want protection from knockdowns, Power Drift provides 30% knockdown resistance while Handspring makes you recover faster. At least you can use Corrosive Projection with those 😉

Best Arcanes for Excalibur Umbra

  1. Arcane Fury
  2. Arcane Grace
  3. Arcane Avenger
  4. Arcane Ultimatum
  5. Arcane Energize

Most of these are quite straight forward so I will keep this short. Exalted Blade is a melee weapon and can benefit greatly from the extra melee damage of Arcane Fury. And since you will always be using Sacrificial Steel on it, getting crits in will not be a problem, either. An alternative here would be Arcane Strike which increases Attack Speed.

Arcane Grace fixes the one thing this build lacks: Health Regeneration. You are tanky enough to sustain a few hits and, at the same time, you will always be in the middle of the fight which means getting hit. Arcane Grace will use these hits to replenish your health, making this a very fitting Arcane for the best Excalibur Umbra build.

TennoHQ Logo

Because you’re building your Exalted Blade with crit, Arcane Avenger is often a good choice, too, though that depends more on the build you will be using. As just explained, getting hit is inevitable so you will be activating this, too.

Arcane Ultimatum requires you to perform finishers to activate it. Theoretically, Howl makes this very easy. Simply cast Howl, walk up to your enemy, and press X (or whatever your interact button is). If you don’t have a problem with doing that every 45 seconds, this Arcane is great as 1200 armor is quite a lot. On the other hand, if you tend to forget about your Arcanes, rather stay away from this one. If you still want more armor, go with Arcane Guardian.

And lastly, Arcane Energize doesn’t need to be explained much. The occasional bonus energy is always appreciated especially due to our low pool.

Best Exalted Blade Builds

The Exalted Umbra Blade is, of course, a huge part of the best Excalibur Umbra build. Because of that, I have created two versions depending on your needs and made a full post explaining everything that needs to be said!

Beginner Excalibur Build

Beginner Excalibur Build Warframe Modding Guide

For the beginners with normal Excalibur, here is a good starter build for you. Of course you will not have all these mods from the very beginning but it is something to work towards. The Augur mods can be gotten quite early in the Plains of Eidolon, for example. Power Drift is probably the hardest one to get, so don’t worry. Without Power Drift you will only need an Orokin Reactor for this beginner Excalibur build.

End Note: Best Excalibur Umbra Build – Warframe Excalibur Build – 2021

With Excalibur Umbra and Excalibur both being in the top 5 most played Warframes, it is clear that they have something compelling. The allrounder nature of our favorite swordsman makes him a great pick for basically every mission so investing some time to get the best Excalibur Umbra build pays for itself very quickly. It doesn’t matter at which stage of the game you are. Even as the starter frame, the beginner Excalibur build serves you well in every kind of mission until you complete The Sacrifice and get your hands on Umbra. Now go and have fun swinging that sword!

Thanks for reading!


7 Responses

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