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Principal Guardians will rush in to attack at melee range with potent energy blades that extend from their arms. They are usually encountered in the company of other Guardian types, presenting a challenging encounter if they manage to get in close while their fellow Guardians add ranged fire from a distance.
Maintaining distance on them and attacking from range is usually the best approach. This reduces the problem of getting tangled in a crossfire of Principal Guardians slashing away at melee range while energy blasts are poured on from other nearby attackers.
They have very high shields, and low health, so as with other Guardians Shock damage attacks are recommended to get their shields depleted. Once their shields are down, they will die quickly to damage on their comparatively weak bodies.
A Badass Guardian is a much larger, more powerful version of a Principal Guardian, also primarily using melee attacks to do damage. These are distinguished from the other guardians by their larger size, a slightly different glow to their armor and a larger protrusion on their backs.
Shock elemental weapons are a valuable asset against Badass Guardians, as their durability is mainly supplied by their shields, which are easily depleted by shock weapon attacks. They have a moderate base health, higher than other Guardians, yet still comparatively lower than most enemies.
Equipping a Shock Artifact is a very effective tactic for empowering any action skills being used against a Badass Guardian. Hunters also make good use of the Trespass sniper ability to ignore the shield of any Guardian.
- The name "Principal" is most probably a reference to one of the ranks of Angels in Judeo-Islamo-Christian tradition, the "Principalities." This follows the naming scheme of the other Eridian Enemies (cf. "Arch" and "Sera").