Klee DPS Build Guide

Klee Portrait

Maygi’s complete guide to Klee teaches you how to play and build this 5-star Pyro character! The guide has been posted and updated with permission, and you can always find the original document here.

Last Update 12/2/20: Updated weapon math with level 90 values, and clarified stat building in the artifact section. Also updated some animation cancelling data (again), and added notes on burst damage snapshotting. Added Royal back to weapon spreadsheet.

Hi everyone! I’ve recently been having a ton of fun with Klee and have created a number of posts regarding maths and stuff for what gear to use on her, and since then I’ve gotten a bunch of questions of how to build and play her and whatnot. So, I figured I’d throw together a guide for it!

There’s still a lot of things that can be expanded on, but I think this should be a helpful resource for people picking up Klee and wanting to learn how to optimize her! The game is still quite new, so if there are things that need correction or if you have additional comments, please DM me at Maygi#4987 on Discord!

Table of Contents

Playstyles

There are many ways that Klee can be played in a party to fulfill different roles – here are just a few of them!

Main DPS

Klee will be on the field for a majority of the time, dealing a large amount of normal/charged attack combos in addition to her skills. Her passive will help her generate energy for the whole party as she uses charged attacks, so she’ll swap out every now and then to receive buffs, healing, and elemental reaction setups from her other teammates skills and bursts!

Burst DPS (quick swap)

This is the most lore-accurate way for Klee to be played.

She’s in solitary confinement most of the time, but when she does swap in, she causes all sorts of mayhem! Typically built with burst-oriented gear such as The Widsith, she unloads two charges of her E for some massive damage on top of her Elemental Burst!

Support

Klee isn’t as suitable for support compared to other pyro support characters such as Xiangling and Bennett, due to the nature of her burst only being active when she is on the field. Unlike those two, Klee needs to be on the field for a good amount of time to be useful to the party. She cannot set up consistent elemental reactions in the same way that the aforementioned characters do. A “Support Klee” is pretty much a burst DPS Klee, and no way you would pull for Klee if you didn’t want her to be making huge explosions, right?

Skill Overview

Before we dive into things, here’s a brief overview for skills and their damage values to use as a reference!

ImageSkill NameDetails (talent level 8 in paren)Notes
Normal Attack: Kaboom!1-Hit DMG: 72.2% (115%)
2-Hit DMG: 62.4% (99.8%)
3-Hit DMG: 89.9% (144%)
Charged ATK DMG: 157% (252%)
Three-hit combo is very slow. Recommended to animation cancel (see examples).
Jumpy DumptyBounce DMG (3x): 95% (152%)
Mine DMG (8x): 32.8% (52.5%)
Throwing a second Jumpy Dumpty when the mines from the first have not expired causes the mines to explode immediately.
Sparks ‘n’ SplashDMG (3×5): 42.6-68.2%Deals three rounds of damage every 2 seconds, lasting for 10 seconds (5 rounds total). Damage is snapshotted with stats at the start of the cast.
Pounding SurpriseAfter dealing damage with Jumpy Dumpty or Normal Attacks, have a 50% chance to gain an Explosive Spark, which makes the next charged attack cost no Stamina and deal 50% increased damage.The spark lasts for 30 seconds and can persist on swap-out.
Sparking BurstWhen a Charged Attack critically strikes, all party members gain 2 Elemental Energy.Regardless of how many mobs you hit, the energy is only gained once.

Skill Levelling Priority

You can adjust this to your playstyle, but in general, I would recommend:

Basic Attack > Sparks ‘n’ Splash > Jumpy Dumpty

Constellations

These really don’t matter, right? Right? -nervously stares at wallet-

ConstellationDescription
1 – Chained ReactionsAttacks and Skills have a 25% chance to summon one round of Sparks ‘n’ Splash, dealing 120% of its normal damage.
2 – Explosive FragsBeing hit by Jumpy Dumpty’s mines decrease DEF by 23% for 10s.
3 – Exquisite CompoundRaises the level of Jumpy Dumpty by 3. Maximum level is 15.
4 – Sparkly explosionWhen Klee leaves the field during Sparks ‘n’ Splash, deal 555% damage as AoE Pyro DMG. Must leave before the last round of damage goes off.
5 – Nova BurstRaises the level of Sparks ‘n’ Splash by 3. Maximum level is 15.
6 – Blazing DelightWhile under the effects of Sparks ‘n’ Splash, other members of the party (except Klee) continuously regenerate 3 energy every 3 seconds. When Sparks ‘n’ Splash is used, all party members gain 10% Pyro DMG for 25s.

Weapons

Now that we know a bit about what her skills do, what weapons/artifact builds are ideal for her?

All of these options and recommendations are based on some extensive math, and are sorted, for the most part, in the order they are recommended in (assuming all similar refinement). Curious on the numbers? Check out the Math section.

ImageWeapon NamePassive (R5 in paren)Notes
Skyward AtlasIncreases Elemental DMG by 12% (24%). Normal Attack hits have a 50% chance to earn the favor of the clouds, which actively seek out nearby enemies to attack for 15s, dealing 160% (320%) ATK DMG. Can only occur once every 30s.Highest DPS option for general purpose use. Not only does this boast the highest base stat for catalysts, but also has free stats from passive, and a bonus cloud to do DPS on top of that.
Memory of DustIncreases ATK by 4% (8%) when hitting enemies (max stacks: 5). 0.3s cooldown between stacks.ATK increase doubled when shielded.Higher raw numbers than Skyward, but difficult to build around due to immense saturation of ATK % (basically, you’d need almost all crit/critdmg subs as opposed to attack).
Lost Prayer to the Sacred WindsIncreases movement speed by 10%. Increases Elemental DMG by 8% (16%) for every 4s of combat, up to 32% (64%)
Average Ele DMG Values (R1):
8s: 4%
12s: 8%
16s: 12%
20s: 16%
24s: 19.2%
Strong main stat, but the passive is situational as in most cases, you will be switching out before it gets a chance to ramp up a lot. (16 seconds before the Elemental DMG average value is the same as Skyward Atlas’s passive) Godly for 4P co-op, however.
The WidsithWhen you switch to this character, gain either an Attack, Elemental DMG, or Elemental Mastery buff for 10s. (CD: 30s)
Attack: 60% (120%)Elemental DMG: 48% (96%)Elemental Mastery: 240 (480)
Incredible burst that works very well with Klee. Not too far behind other 4* options outside of the burst window, either. Note: Yes, you can totally use The Widsith on Klee as Main DPS.
Solar Pearl(BP Weapon)Gain a 20% Elemental Skill/Burst damage buff for 6s when using a Normal Attack, and a 20% Normal Attack damage buff for 6s when using an Elemental Skill/Burst.Doesn’t buff charged attacks at all, which are a decent portion of Klee’s damage. Still useful for the easy-to-maintain 20% Skill/Burst buff, though.
Royal GrimoireIncreases Critical Rate on-hit by 8% (16%), up to 5 times, resetting when a critical hit is scored.Very strong with low crit rate substats, but falls off as you get more. Refinements offer a very minor boost.
Eye of PerceptionDeals a bonus 240% (360%) damage attack that bounces up to 4 times every 12 (8) seconds.Abysmal base attack, but very high main stat to make up for it. Passive can hit the same target multiple times.
Mappa MareGrants one stack (max: 2) of an 8% (16%) Elemental DMG buff when triggering an Elemental Reaction. The F2P option! It’s pretty strong at higher refinements – even more so than other 4* options at R1 – assuming you can always maintain two stacks of the buff. But, that also assumes you’ll ever get any prototype book drops from weeklies.
Blackcliff AmuletAfter defeating an enemy, ATK is increased by 12% (24%) for 30s. Max 3 stacks; each stack duration is independent of others.The passive can be strong in some encounters, and useless in others. It would make gameplay awkward to switch into Klee to gain/maintain stacks from kills too, so in practice this weapon may be difficult to use to its full potential.
Sacrificial FragmentsHas a 40% (80%) chance to end skill cooldown after damaging an enemy with an Elemental Skill. Cooldown: 30s (16s)
Only gain one charge of E when it procs
This weapon can be suitable for support Klee, but is not recommended for general purpose DPS as Jumpy Dumpty isn’t a huge portion of your total damage.
Favonius CodexCRIT hits have a 60% (100%) chance to generate Elemental Particles that restore 6 energy for the character. Cooldown: 12s (6s)You really don’t need extra energy recharge, in both mainstat and a passive, on Klee. Avoid this!

Summary

Note: Gacha/BP weapons are considered as R1. Rankings may vary with refinements!

  • 5*: Skyward Atlas ~= Memory of Dust > Lost Prayer (good for coop)
  • 4*: Widsith (burst) ~= Solar Pearl (sustained dmg) > Mappa Mare R5 > Eye of Perception > Royal Grimoire (only suitable for early game) > Mappa Mare R1 > Anything else

Why is Lost Prayer not BiS?

BiS really depends on what your artifact substats are, because it can vary a lot. The critical rate on Lost Prayer has very high value and makes achieving a balanced stat spread easier early on. However, in very late-game builds, desired substat spread is weighted very heavily towards crit rate/dmg and not attack even on a book like Lost Prayer which has crit base, meaning in the grand scheme of things, it may not make gearing “easier” after all. 

Here are some example high-end* optimal artifact stat spreads for 5* books (not total stats):

  • Skyward Atlas: ~80% Crit, ~160% Crit DMG
  • Lost Prayer: ~12% ATK, ~60% Crit, ~180% Crit DMG
  • Memory of Dust:  ~80% Crit, ~160% Crit DMG

*30 substat rolls out of a possible 38

Moreover, its passive fails to be realized in most scenarios, as you will not be waiting for it to ramp up in order to use your burst (your burst will snapshot your stats at the start of the case, meaning most of the time it will never see the full potential, or even enjoy any, of Lost Prayer’s passive). Skills and buffs from your other characters typically last around 10-15 seconds, so you want to frontload your burst, not save it for the end.

Artifacts

Let’s dive into artifacts sets and which ones to use for Klee!

Recommended Sets

  • Crimson Witch of Flames (2) + Gladiator’s Finale* (2) – General-purpose DPS. Can’t go wrong.
  • Crimson Witch of Flames (4) – Acceptable choice for a Klee using The Widsith
    • Klee has bad uptime of the 4-piece buff, but when using Widsith, her damage is heavily weighted towards a 10 second burst window every 30 seconds, so she’ll be able to get stacks of the buff during that to increase its effectiveness
    • This set is currently bugged and you can spam press E to gain more one more stack than intended

Other Sets

  • Lavawalker (4) – Very strong but situational (see notes)
  • Gladiator’s Finale* (2) + Blood-soaked (2) – Early game general-purpose. Blood-soaked  (Berserker) can’t be 5* so it’s not as optimal, but the set is still comparable in strength to other 2-piece options.
  • Wanderer’s Troupe (4) – Useable choice for a Klee that is Main DPS
    • While charged attacks can be a significant portion of your damage, in general, it’s better to just go for raw stats through Crimson Witch.
    • Still not recommended
  • Noblesse Oblige – Don’t use this. Klee’s burst is strong, but it’s not over 50% of your total damage output so you’d get more overall damage using 2 piece Crimson Witch or Gladiator.
  • or any ATK % 2-piece set

Set Details

ImageNameDetailsNotes
Crimson Witch of Flames(2) Increases Pyro DMG by 15%(4) Increases Overload and Burning DMG by 40%, and Vaporize and Melt by 15%. Using an Elemental Skill grants an extra 7.5% Pyro damage, max 3 stacks (10s).The reaction damage increase is roughly equivalent to 80 Elemental Mastery, and is additive with Elemental Mastery.
Because Klee’s Elemental Skill cooldown is so long, she can only get up to two stacks of the Pyro buff from the 4-piece. 
Gladiator’s Finale(2) ATK +18%(4) If the wielder is using a Sword, Claymore, or Polearm, increase Normal Attack damage by 35%A good chunk of attack with no strings attached for the 2-set part. What’s not to love?
Wanderer’s Troupe(2) Elemental Mastery +80(4) If the wielder is using a Bow or Catalyst, increase Charged Attack damage by 35%Charged Attacks make up a good portion of Klee’s DPS, but if you’re focusing on burst (i.e. with The Widsith), going for raw general-purpose damage is a better option.
Lavawalker(2) Increases Pyro RES by 40%(4) Increases DMG to enemies affected by Pyro by 35%In practice, a lot of mobs with natural elements will instantly react to Pyro (e.g. hitting an Ice Slime will instantly trigger melt and it will never actually have Pyro on it), so you won’t be able to get the damage boost in a lot of cases, so this set is not recommended for general scenarios.
Blood-soaked(2) Increases Critical Rate by 12%(4) When health is below 70%, increase Critical Rate by an additional 24%A decent set for the 2-piece effect, primarily for early-mid game. There is currently no 5* Blood-soaked artifacts available in-game, so you’d be missing out on potential stats running this set in the long run.

Artifact Main Stat Optimization

In every scenario, you will run ATK % Sands, and Pyro % Goblet. The Circlet varies depending on your substats, as well as your choice of weapon. To generalize the stat breakdowns:

If you are using a critical damage weapon or attack % weapon, use a Crit Rate Circlet

Otherwise, if you have >45% Critical Rate, use a Crit Damage Circlet

Otherwise, just use an ATK % Circlet.

Of course, these numbers may fluctuate depending on your substats. In general, you want around a 2x ratio between your Crit Rate and Crit Damage. For example, if you have 60% Crit Rate, you want around 120% Crit Damage. Please use my Artifact  Optimizer Spreadsheet to put in your specific stats to calculate which mainstat is ideal for your circlet!

An example of the Artifact Optimizer sheet. As you can see, at 45% Critical

Rate, the Effective Attack values of the Attack and Crit DMG options become similar.

Artifact Substats

What substats are the best? Well, I would say, beggars can’t be choosers (we’re all victims of RNG and our seemingly-perfect pieces rolling into flat defense at the most inopportune moments), but, in general, you are trying to balance out your stats. You want around 2x Crit Dmg : Crit Rate ratio. Very end-game builds revolve around reaching values of ~80-90% Crit Chance and 160-180% Crit Damage, with only very attack % lines in there.

In general…

  • If you are using a Critical Rate weapon, Critical Damage subs have the most value.
  • If you are using a Critical Damage weapon, Critical Rate subs have the most value.
  • If you are using an ATK % weapon, Critical Rate subs have the most value.
  • If you are using an Elemental Mastery weapon, Attack % or Critical Rate subs are ideal.

All in all, the substat values can come pretty close, so even if you have an ATK % weapon, I’m sure you can be happy with rolling ATK % subs – AS LONG AS IT’S NOT FLAT STATS, RIGHT?

Elemental Mastery?

What’s the value of Elemental Mastery on Klee? This really depends on your team comp and/or what you’re fighting (it’s amazing against Ice/Water slimes, that’s for sure!). It’s a stat that’s nice to have, but not prioritize, as reaction damage (everything except Vaporize/Melt which are multipliers) falls off as you become more geared (reaction damage only scales with EM + level), and it can be difficult for Klee to capitalize on Vaporize/Melt procs when her burst is active.

Energy Recharge?

Especially if you let her DPS for the duration of her burst, Klee typically generates energy for another burst before the cooldown is up. I wouldn’t bother with energy recharge on her.

Synergies

Giving the right party setup to Klee will really help her shine. Below are a few examples of notable chars to include in a party with her…

Notes

Any Pyro character, for +25% ATK pyro resonance

  • Bennett doubles as both a healer and powerful buffer
  • Xiangling can offer some buffs/debuffs, though her constantly-ticking abilities may make it difficult to capitalize on landing Vaporize/Melt from Hydro/Cryo that you are applying
  • Diluc can function as a main DPS while Klee focuses on burst

Anemo MC / Jean, to group up and force mines onto the enemy

  • Clean up Klee’s mess!

Venti, to suck mobs together so they take the full force of the AOE PYRO DAMAGE

  • Venti’s burst does not move Klee’s mines for whatever reason

Sucrose, for EM buffs on top of typical anemo debuffs (Ele DMG at C6)

  • She can also hold a copy of Thrilling Tales of Dragon Slayers to buff Klee up even further!

Fischl/Lisa/Beidou, for easy overload procs

Cryo skills will not tick often enough to allow you to get Melt hits in regularly without holding back on DPS, so cryo members are only for their utility (e.g. Qiqi heal)

Barbara/Xingqiu/Mona, to enable vaporize

  • Klee naturally needs to be close-range to land a lot of her damage, so it’ll be easy to apply the element from these character’s skills that require close range!

Animation Cancelling

There are plenty of little tricks you can use to optimize how fast you can pump out your damage and keep up with ragdoll enemies!

Basic Attack

  • Recommended: Attack while holding directional key
  • Buttons to hold: Any directional key
  • When to click: See GIF (timing is precise)

  • Situational: Attack and jump
  • Buttons to hold: Whatever direction you want to move
  • Notes: This is useful when you need to move, but slightly slower than the above method

Basic -> Charge Attack

  • Input: Double click and hold
  • Buttons to hold: NO directional key
  • When to click:  Immediately after laser fires

Charge Attack

  • Input: Click and hold
  • Buttons to hold: Doesn’t matter
  • When to click:  Immediately after laser fires
  • Situational: Attack and jump
  • Buttons to hold: Whatever direction you want to move

Jump Cancelling

Jump cancelling has the same timing as clicking in place, except you jump instead of click. This is dangerous (you can’t dodge while jumping), but the advantage is that you can reposition your character, so this is useful when mobs are getting knocked back by your charge attack (you can do charge -> jump towards them -> charge -> jump towards them -> etc).

  • Forward auto >
  • Jump auto  >
  • Jump double auto (remember that 2nd auto deals less damage than the first)
  • Jump charge < Charge click in place

Elemental Burst to Cancel

You can use your Elemental Burst to instantly cancel an animation. Just make sure you don’t cast it too soon before the attack comes out.

Ugly Math

Math references for weapon calculations! The values shown in the columns are Effective Attack values. These calculations were done with math similar to the artifact spreadsheet through a program that simulates the perfect substat spreads with 10, 20, or 30 total substat lines.

Easier to read version with percentages:

Note: These are simulated builds. As you can see, the simulator opted for Crit Dmg circlet in every situation but had an ungodly amount of crit rate subs. Pay more attention to the end values to see the typical stat goals.

With high stats:

  • Optimal Build for Skyward Atlas: ATK %: 97.7% (+0.0%), Crit: 5.0% (+74.1%), CD: 112.1% (+46.8%), EATK: 10316. Circlet: Crit Dmg
  • Optimal Build for Lost Prayer: ATK %: 64.6% (+17.4%), Crit: 38.1% (+50.7%), CD: 112.1% (+70.2%), EATK: 9890. Circlet: Crit Dmg
  • Optimal Build for Memory of Dust: ATK %: 114.2% (+0.0%), Crit: 5.0% (+74.1%), CD: 112.1% (+46.8%), EATK: 9795. Circlet: Crit Dmg
  • Optimal Build for Solar Pearl: ATK %: 64.6% (+17.4%), Crit: 32.6% (+54.6%), CD: 112.1% (+62.4%), EATK: 8667. Circlet: Crit Dmg
  • Optimal Build for Eye of Perception: ATK %: 119.7% (+0.0%), Crit: 5.0% (+74.1%), CD: 112.1% (+46.8%), EATK: 8558. Circlet: Crit Dmg
  • Optimal Build for Royal Grimoire: ATK %: 92.2% (+5.8%), Crit: 36.0% (+37.2%), CD: 50.0% (+124.8%), EATK: 8881. Circlet: Crit Rate
  • Optimal Build for Mappa Mare: ATK %: 64.6% (+11.6%), Crit: 5.0% (+70.2%), CD: 112.1% (+39.0%), EATK: 7543. Circlet: Crit Dmg
  • Optimal Build for The Widsith: ATK %: 64.6% (+17.4%), Crit: 5.0% (+81.9%), CD: 167.2% (+7.8%), EATK: 8664. Circlet: Crit Dmg

Lost Prayer average Elemental DMG over time:

Animation cancel data:

For autoattacks (30 FPS):

Update Log

  • 11/5/20: Started keeping track of updates! Added Blackcliff amulet, and various other 4* weapons. Added a summary for weapon choices.
  • 11/6/20: Added a small infographic for synergy.
  • 11/7/20: Added more information to animation cancelling. Added notes on double auto + jump.
  • 11/12/20: Edited C6 information. Updated artifact recommendation layout and added notes on Noblesse Oblige.
  • 11/13/20: Redid math with an advanced program that simulates all possible substat combinations with each weapon. Added an explanation for why Lost Prayer is mediocre.
  • 11/15/20: Updated jump double auto GIF + added frame data to Animation Cancelling section.
  • 12/2/20: Updated weapon math with level 90 values, and clarified stat building in the artifact section. Also updated some animation cancelling data (again), and added notes on burst damage snapshotting.

Credits

  • stellar#7066 for reporting that Klee’s burst damage is snapshotted
  • ~The Kleeful Frame CounterTM~#6735 for breaking down and optimizing Klee animation cancelling data