Phantasmal Defender

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Disambig icon.png This article is about the mesmer skill. For the trait skill that previously had the same name, see Lesser Phantasmal Defender.

Phantasmal Defender.png

Phantasmal Defender

Mesmer icon small.png Mesmer (skill list)
Illusionary Defender
Training cost
3 Hero points
Game link
1 Activation time  
40 Recharge time
50 Recharge time
Phantasmal Defender

Phantasm. Summon an illusion that taunts your target and all nearby targets while blocking. When it finishes blocking, the illusion explodes, dealing increased damage for each attack it blocked.

Damage.png Damage: 393 (0.4)?
Damage.png Damage: 197 (0.2)?
Damage.png Increased damage per block: 50%
Damage.png Maximum Damage Increase: 500%
Taunt.png Taunt (3s): Involuntarily attack foes.
Taunt.png Taunt (1s): Involuntarily attack foes.
Number of targets.png Number of Targets: 5
Radius.png Radius: 240
Range.png Range: 900

— In-game description


Phantasm Skill used Effect
Illusionary Defender Phantasmal Defender.png Illusion of Defense Taunt foes, blocks attacks and explodes, dealing more damage for more blocked attacks.


  • Summons a phantasm called Illusionary Defender wielding a shield and no weapon (but does damage).
  • When used underwater, the activation is 0.5½ Activation time second.
  • If the explosion of the Phantasmal Defender deals the final blow to a mob it progresses the Shield Master achievement.
  • Phantasms have their own unique weapon strength that is independent of the player's equipped weapon rarity.
While the tooltip uses a weapon strength of 2553.5, the defender's weapon strength midpoint appears to be ~2363.

Related traits[edit]

Domination Domination

Dueling Dueling

Chaos Chaos

  • Chaotic Interruption Chaotic Interruption — When you interrupt a foe, recharge one of your equipped-weapon skills at random. Only affects weapon skills that are recharging.

Inspiration Inspiration

Illusions Illusions

Chronomancer Chronomancer

Virtuoso Virtuoso

Version history[edit]

For a detailed skill history, see here.

Patch Changes
May 22, 2018
  • The tooltip for this skill now shows the correct damage the skill inflicts in PvE.
  • Its damage has been reduced by 50% in PvP and WvW.
February 06, 2018
  • Phantasms can no longer be shattered and no longer count toward your maximum illusion count.
  • Phantasms are destroyed and then replaced by clones after completing their unique attack or if their attack is interrupted.
  • This skill taunts your target and all nearby foes for 3 seconds in PvE and for 1 second in PvP and WvW, then blocks attacks.
  • After it has finished blocking, it explodes, dealing damage based on how many attacks it blocked.
  • The phantasm now spawns closer to the caster's location.
  • It no longer grants protection.
  • The recharge has been increased to 40 seconds in PvE and 50 seconds in PvP and WvW.
February 22, 2017
  • The recharge of this skill has been reduced from 25 seconds to 20 seconds.
October 18, 2016
  • The casting time of this ability has been reduced from 1.5 seconds to 1 second.
July 26, 2016
  • This utility skill now applies protection for 4 seconds in a radius around the mesmer.
  • The damage reduction from this illusion has been reduced from 50% to 33%.
October 23, 2015 Heart of Thorns release:
  • Phantasms: Fixed a bug in which incorrect damage values displayed in the skill facts.
June 23, 2015 Specialization update:
  • Phantasm damage has been increased by 15%.
  • Updated the description of this skill to more accurately convey that it also absorbs damage directed at allies. Functionality has not been changed.
January 27, 2015
  • The cooldown on this skill has been reduced from 30 seconds to 25 seconds.
May 20, 2014
  • Updated the skill facts to have the appropriate damage indicator (separate from the general fix to minion skill damage).
August 28, 2012 Game release:
  • Phantasmal Defender has been added to the game.