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Position-based Thief guide (S/D)

thief sword dagger crit guide acrobatics

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#1 Zelse

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Posted 28 July 2012 - 06:10 AM

I wrote this up during BWE3 for my guild and thought I would drop it here for some review, critique, what have you.


In my opinion, Arenanet NAILED the feel for this profession. Each trait line offers plenty of useful tools for the aspiring Thief's arsenal, weapon skills feel powerful and are quite fun to use, and visually, the Thief has some very cool effects.


I've played many different specs during the beta, and this is my favorite. I've put it together after many hours of structured solo queue PvP, and it works very well to that end. With a few adjustments, I believe it should serve well in most scenarios.



Without further ado, my personal build: The Dirty Duelist

Spoiler

Happy Hunting!


Edit: I would like to add that I am by no means an expert or professional, nor am I claiming that this is a completely optimized build. /flameretardantsuit

Edited by Zelse, 28 July 2012 - 11:52 PM.


#2 IDarko

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Posted 28 July 2012 - 12:44 PM

Did you not experience loads of misses with Flanking Strike? Or is the key to strike when the enemy is about to hit you?

#3 Zelse

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Posted 28 July 2012 - 05:14 PM

View PostIDarko, on 28 July 2012 - 12:44 PM, said:

Did you not experience loads of misses with Flanking Strike? Or is the key to strike when the enemy is about to hit you?


I find it works best when you can face them head on and read them. A good example is if they're running from you and realize they will not be able to get away, and so they turn to fight, or whenever they just manage to face directly at you, recovering from all of your/their rolling around. I think lag has a small amount to do with it as well, as it is VERY position based (using too early/late?).

Also it seems if you don't manually target them, you just fly off in a weird direction and it doesn't hit anything, whereas with other abilities, you can just walk up and mash them.

#4 Theefpitfall

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Posted 28 July 2012 - 05:42 PM

Cool stuff for hot-join playing around, could you vouch for this spec at 1st/2nd place tourney's?

#5 Tenderly

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Posted 28 July 2012 - 07:52 PM

Would love to see a video of you doing this.

What about the runes/amulet/jewel/sigil? That's almost as important as weapons/traits

#6 IDarko

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Posted 28 July 2012 - 08:34 PM

Ok, i was just wondering because i can't imagine that this works against people who never try to face you. Competent PvP'ers will always move.

#7 Sebyos

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Posted 28 July 2012 - 08:46 PM

Wait what a guide that's more of a build showoff than a guide then a build without runes sigils or traits ? C'mon seriously...

#8 CrunkJuice2

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Posted 28 July 2012 - 09:59 PM

View PostTheefpitfall, on 28 July 2012 - 05:42 PM, said:

Cool stuff for hot-join playing around, could you vouch for this spec at 1st/2nd place tourney's?

i dont think people are gonna go sword/dagger for tournys since flanking strike is messed up

#9 Zelse

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Posted 28 July 2012 - 11:22 PM

View PostTheefpitfall, on 28 July 2012 - 05:42 PM, said:

Cool stuff for hot-join playing around, could you vouch for this spec at 1st/2nd place tourney's?

I didn't mess with tournaments since PvP kept going down and I had to work all weekend. I didn't want to get too serious about it yet.

View PostTenderly, on 28 July 2012 - 07:52 PM, said:

Would love to see a video of you doing this.


What about the runes/amulet/jewel/sigil? That's almost as important as weapons/traits

I wish I did some recording, but since we're unsure how optimized it is, and my gaming pc is almost 4 years old, I didn't want to deal with the possible lag. I also didn't anticipate releasing this on the Guru. I thought about keeping it to the guild website. If demand is high enough I'll try and get some after launch or during a stress test if the lag isn't too bad.


As for runes and sigils, for runes I used Thief for the final bonus, but Eagle may be better. Sigils were both Frailty(Vulnerability on crit), which was awesome. Can't believe I forgot those. I'll fix it with an explanation of why I chose them.

View PostIDarko, on 28 July 2012 - 08:34 PM, said:

Ok, i was just wondering because i can't imagine that this works against people who never try to face you. Competent PvP'ers will always move.

A good point, but you have to be facing a thief to hit him. > :D

Edited by Zelse, 28 July 2012 - 11:53 PM.


#10 Fayne

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Posted 29 July 2012 - 07:11 AM

I tried sword+dagger in BWE3 and found that Flanking Strike was far more reliable if you paired it with Cloak and Dagger.  Once stealthed I would hit that daze with Tactical Strike and then Flanking Strike seldom missed.

Pair it with infusion of Shadow in Shadow Arts to save on the initiative.

Edited by Fayne, 29 July 2012 - 07:21 AM.


#11 Zelse

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Posted 30 July 2012 - 06:18 PM

View PostFayne, on 29 July 2012 - 07:11 AM, said:

I tried sword+dagger in BWE3 and found that Flanking Strike was far more reliable if you paired it with Cloak and Dagger.  Once stealthed I would hit that daze with Tactical Strike and then Flanking Strike seldom missed.

Pair it with infusion of Shadow in Shadow Arts to save on the initiative.

Cool idea, but then what traits would you remove to get that far in Shadow Arts?

#12 Fayne

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Posted 30 July 2012 - 07:57 PM

View PostZelse, on 30 July 2012 - 06:18 PM, said:

Cool idea, but then what traits would you remove to get that far in Shadow Arts?

It isn't "far" into Shadow Arts. It's just 10 points.

#13 Anelyn

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Posted 04 August 2012 - 12:45 PM

Am not sure is worth to spend so much initiative just to land your DW skill. Personally I'd much rather to have a reliable way to use my DW skill when I need it to and count on it doing what is meant to do instead of setting up for it. (I understand the need to do that with pistol whip but that is a channeled self root skill and the damage potential is much higher than FS).

#14 Engel Jorgenson

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Posted 04 August 2012 - 01:35 PM

I've post a mini guide in the build section yesterday morning. Post #1092, I'm glad to see i'm not to one who love S/D. It's all about positional gameplay. You can avoid almost every attack with Flanking Strike as it's now fixed.  It's now a move to your target's back and then you hit him twice then it won't miss.

Edited by Engel Jorgenson, 04 August 2012 - 01:36 PM.


#15 Fade_Guin

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Posted 04 August 2012 - 02:19 PM

I've wanted to do a S/D weapon set since BWE2, but the misses were infuriating. I didn't test this setup out on this week's stress test, but I have high hopes for it come release day.

A word of warning though Engel, unless you actually tested it this last stress test and saw for yourself that the second attack hits all/most of the time now, I wouldn't get your expectations though the roof, in case it is still ho hum ;)

That being said, I really do hope the missing issue is solved, as I really like the idea of S/D.

#16 Engel Jorgenson

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Posted 04 August 2012 - 02:25 PM

View PostFade_Guin, on 04 August 2012 - 02:19 PM, said:

I've wanted to do a S/D weapon set since BWE2, but the misses were infuriating. I didn't test this setup out on this week's stress test, but I have high hopes for it come release day.

A word of warning though Engel, unless you actually tested it this last stress test and saw for yourself that the second attack hits all/most of the time now, I wouldn't get your expectations though the roof, in case it is still ho hum ;)

That being said, I really do hope the missing issue is solved, as I really like the idea of S/D.
I tested in the last beta and it never missed for me. It's now a quick move at your target's back followed by two hits.

#17 Fade_Guin

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Posted 04 August 2012 - 02:35 PM

View PostEngel Jorgenson, on 04 August 2012 - 02:25 PM, said:

I tested in the last beta and it never missed for me. It's now a quick move at your target's back followed by two hits.

It's kind of too bad that it's divided into two separate hits. Combining those two into one would make for some really nice numbers. :D Going by the tool tips on gwskills.net, combining the two would give you the same damage as back stab.

As it stands, the second hit alone will do the same damage (again going by tool tips) as a less-than 66% heart seeker, meaning it only costs 1 more initiative over heart seeker plus you get the evade and the initial hit as a bonus.

Edited by Fade_Guin, 04 August 2012 - 02:35 PM.


#18 Faded913

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Posted 04 August 2012 - 05:32 PM

personally im really really frustrated with some of the thief abilities that just miss and cost you valuable initiative. Unlike other classes thats ive played, our abilities are depended on our initiative pool and when you miss big ones like c&d, heartseeker, flanking strike, youre kinda screwed unless u traited into high ini regen and extra ini. I just watched a video of some guy missing 3 heartseekers in a row as recently as bwe3 for no apparent reason, ie, no boons, conditions, invulnerability, etc.

#19 Engel Jorgenson

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Posted 04 August 2012 - 05:35 PM

HS misses often (I experienced it myself and I gave up D/D instantly) but it has been reported.

#20 Anelyn

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Posted 04 August 2012 - 05:47 PM

HS misses were fixed up to my knowledge (in last stress test i did not experience it, of course except when my target dodged at same time I was doing the HS animation but that is to be expected).

#21 Engel Jorgenson

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Posted 04 August 2012 - 05:50 PM

It was missing a LOT during the last stress test (in PvE), so I don't know why. Maybe something new about expertise, maybe something else.





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