The Defiance bar (also called a breakbar) is a very important mechanic in fractals mainly due to its ability to let players do more damage to a mob for a certain amount of time after breaking it.
Usually elite or higher mobs will have a defiance bar in fractals, your goal should be to break this bar as fast as possible. In order to break a defiance bar you need to use CC skills on the enemy whose breakbar you want to break. The size of the bar varies from boss to boss and between mobs too, what matters is that you should break it.
Once you break an enemies defiance bar they will gain an effect named Exposed, which means they take 50% more damage. They will also usually be Stuned, which means they are unable to attack you or deal damage to you.
This guide's aim is to help you understand how your team should cooperate to breaking any breakbar. The present Firebrand + Renegade meta demands CC contributions from every member of the party, even of the DPS players! A list of CC skills along with their defiance bar damage can be found on each classes respective Build page.
In Tier 4 fractals (T4) a breakbar usually does not exceed 600, nevertheless it is everyone's responsibility to break bars as quickly as possible. In PuG (Pick up Group, players from the LFG system) runs, where you can rely on the fact that 4 out of 5 people did not read this page it is very much recommended to make up for their lack of CC with CC consumables.
Using Crowd Control effectively is the key to success in almost all fractals! A fast break will decrease kill times by a large margin even if your party underperforms in every other aspect!
CC is an acronym for Crowd Control. A Crowd Control skill is any skill that disables an enemy or even a group of enemies and therefore deals damage to a defiance bar, it can be split into soft CC or hard CC
Hard CC skills usually inflict the enemy with some kind of movement effect like Stun or Knockback. As they disable the enemy right now they deal defiance bar damage instantaneously. This is the most common used type of CC skills to break a defiance bar.
Soft CC skills are those which apply conditions, they inflict damage to the Defiance bar over time, depending upon the condition. Since you want to get the Exposed effect as soon as possible you can't rely on soft CC breaking a bar of 2000 as seen below it will take quite a while.
At 1800 MAMA has a small defiance bar, but you need to break it three times during the fight. In combination with the Knights that have defiance bars of 800 each MAMA becomes the most CC heavy fractal boss in the game.
You can always use a if you don't trust your group.
The remaining 750 defiance bar damage should come from the Firebrand's and from Berserker's and either or from Weaver if the Berserker isn't bringing an offhand mace.
The easiest and fastest way to break the defiance bars on the split phase clones is with crowd control consumables. This also means you don't need to waste any DPS skills to CC these adds.
The only reason the Berserker carries an off-hand mace on Arkk is to get the buff by precasting after each bloom phase.