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These are the best Princeps skills in Expeditions: Rome to defend your teammates with.

Expeditions: Rome — Best Princeps Class Skills and Complete Skill Tree

These are the best Princeps skills in Expeditions: Rome to defend your teammates with.
This article is over 2 years old and may contain outdated information

The Princeps class in Expeditions: Rome is ideal for those who want to play as defensive-oriented characters. Companions like Caeso and Deianera, as well as any generic Principes that you recruit, are the only ones that can equip shields and heavy armor. They can become bulwarks that protect teammates against countless foes.

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This Expeditions: Rome guide outlines the Princeps class skill tree and provides suggestions on the best skills you should focus on for this class. Click the links below to jump to specific skill trees or straight to the best Princeps skills:

The Princeps Class Skill Trees in Expeditions: Rome

The Princeps class in Expeditions: Rome has three skill trees: Defender, Vanguard, and Veteran. In each skill tree branch, there are tiers requiring you to spend a certain number of points (i.e., 0/1/4/7) before you can obtain new active and passive abilities.

As you progress further in the campaign, you’ll likely have enough points to unlock the strongest abilities for several of these trees. Still, we’ll outline the best skills for the Princeps class in Expeditions: Rome so that you can prepare for the early-game experience onward.

Note that we’ve cited which abilities are active (A) and passive (P). Likewise, we’ve added if certain skills have requirements or if they have additional ranks or levels.

Princeps Defender Class Skills

Tier 1 Skills

  • Brace (A; 2 ranks)  +2/4 Strong; each stack of Strong restores +25% to the shield strength maximum at the beginning of each turn and a stack is lost when the shield takes a hit.
  • Bastion (P)  +10 to all resistances and maximum resistance.

Tier 2 Skills

  • Fortress (P; requires Brace)  Restores 25% of shield strength per stack of Strong.
  • Repair (A)  Applies jury-rigged, making you immune to all status effects against shields. Removes shieldbroken, exposed, and sundered.

Tier 3 Skills

  • Protect (A)  All damage taken by allies within a 1-hex radius is halved and shared with the Princeps (i.e., damage redirection and soaking).
  • Shake It Off (P; 2 ranks)  20/30% chance to automatically cure a negative status effect at the beginning of your turn.

Tier 4 Skills

  • Guardian Angel (P; requires Protect)  Negative status effects made against allies will be redirected to the Princeps as well.
  • Shield Wall (A)  Applies shield-walled, giving +250% shield strength maximum; applies exhausted, which removes all Strong stacks and disables restoration of shield strength at the start of your turn.

Princeps Vanguard Class Skills

Tier 1 Skills

  • Hardened (P; 2 ranks)  +10/20% maximum health.
  • Frighten (A)  -10 morale to all enemies within a 2-hex radius.

Tier 2

  • The Best Defense (P; 3 ranks)  +20/40/60% shield skill damage when at full shield strength.
  • Flawless Defense (A; 2 ranks)  Applies defending, which increases all resistances up to the highest value among the stats you have. +10% maximum resistance and -3 movement.

Tier 3

  • Taunt (A)  Force an enemy to attack you at the start of their turn.
  • Adrenaline Junkie (P)  +50% damage when health is less than 25% of the maximum value.

Tier 4

  • Bull Rush (A)  Charges in a straight line and hits everyone along the way, including allies. Characters will get knocked down if hit.
  • Avenger (P)  When an ally is incapacitated or killed, shield strength is restored to full and +20% damage for the rest of the encounter.

Princeps Veteran Class Skills

Tier 1 Skills

  • Nimble (P; 2 ranks)  -1/2 movement reduction from wearing armors.
  • Knockdown (A)  Deals damage and knocks down an enemy.

Tier 2 Skills

  • Headbutt (A)  Deals low damage but removes all of the target’s movement and applies the weakened state (i.e., -50% damage). If the target is already weakened or harried, they’ll get stunned instead.
  • Opportunist (P; 2 ranks)  Attacks of opportunity will also apply weakened; enemies will also get stunned if you upgrade this skill.

Tier 3 Skills

  • Battering Ram (P; 2 ranks)  +1/3 base damage to the equipped shield.
  • Stand Fast (A) Applies standing fast to allies within 2 hexes; immunity to and removal of stunned, stuck, and knocked down.

Tier 4 Skills

  • War Cry (A; 2 ranks)  Stuns all enemies within a 1-hex radius (2 hexes if upgraded).
  • Immovable (P)  Permanent immunity to any skill that causes your character to get moved (i.e., Rebuke, Shove, Shield Push, Push and Shove, and Counter Advance).

Best Skills for the Princeps Class in Expeditions: Rome

We found that the best skills for the Princeps class in Expeditions: Rome include the following:


Brace, Fortress, and Repair are all amazing if you want your character to be tankier, especially when using certain shield abilities (i.e., Hunker Down). Meanwhile, Protect and Guardian Angel also allow you to partially redirect the damage being dealt to allies.


Frightened is okay if you’ve unlocked the abilities of other classes that can significantly lower morale (i.e., the Veles’ Kill On Ground). The Best Defense is also decent if you often use special abilities granted by your equipped shield, such as Shield Bash. Sadly, the rest, including Taunt and Bull Rush, are too situational.


War Cry is, bar none, the best skill for a Princeps in your Expeditions: Rome team. The idea is to get right into the thick of the fray or use Hunker Down/Committed Blockade to defend a position until enemies get close.

Then, cast War Cry to stun all foes around you, making them easy pickings for the rest of the squad. The only problem is that you need to spend several skill points to unlock it. We suggest getting Nimble, Knockdown, and anything else that suits your fancy.

Related guides

And that’s the complete list of skills for the Princeps class, as well as the best skills for the Princeps, in Expeditions: Rome. For more tips, consider heading over to our guides hub for the game, which includes helpful articles on everything from romance options to Legions and more!

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Jason Rodriguez
Jason Rodriguez is a game reviewer and guides writer from the Philippines. With around 5,000 published articles, he's freelanced for numerous outlets, including GameSkinny, GameSpot, Polygon, IGN, PCGamesN, PC Invasion, and more.