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Why Is Thief So HARD To Play!?

i suck lol

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#1 Intercrew

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 02:32 AM

I never played the guild wars series but have played a lot of mmorpg's on the pc. Most of them free. And I wouldn't have played "a lot" if they all didn't suck. Because 99% of all free mmorpg's are exactly the same in mechanics, aside from the content and graphics.

Guildwars 2 is definitely a game that will be played for a long time for myself and the rest of us. I just love the game and it's massive content that has never been really introduced in other mmorpg's whether or not they are paid games or free.

I picked out a female human thief. Reason was because the moves are flashy, the human females are just too good looking and not to mention the armors all look great for the human thief whether its female or male (but prefer female).

I've tried out both warrior and guardian. And I'm having a huge dilemma for the past 24hours of what to main. (I've tried all the skills for all the classes from entering the pvp mist area)

I guess if it wasn't for the initiative, I would play as thief, but it's very difficult to control how many hits you can land until you have to disappear/avoid from battle (am I right? thieves are more like fish and bait kinda style where they constantly use the shadows/speed to attack as much as possible than retreat as quickly as possible whether or not the foe is dead).

Or maybe I'm just playing the character not right? Again I'm very new to guildwars and because theres only really 5 "main" skills which are the weapons, and the rest being utility. I can't seem to find a good "combo" or a way of killing things. I always get hit after I land my first attack, and constantly not timing my dodge properly (not sure how to to be honest cause the flashy moves/effects are in the way for me to see clearly)

Heck, I've been solo'ing everything up to this point and been focusing on the storyline only as of now, but people are recommending me to do other stuff on the map as the story ones are harder (Seems like it?)

Because I was doing one story quest where the enemies were only 1 level higher than me (I was level 7 and they were 8). I was getting destroyed for atleast close to an hour. I could barely kill one enemy without dying. And everytime I died, I would go back to the checkpoint. One question thats been bothering me a lot is, the skill #1 on your keypad, the default attack. Once I use a spell should I focus on that attack from time to time or just keep on spamming skills? Same goes for warriors and guardian? Because the main goal is to not get hit but if you just stand there and keep on hitting with default skills you'll eventually get beat to pulps. I'm not sure if there are potions in the game so I'm just curious. We have to depend on the healing skill which has a cooldown so I'm really confused on how all melee classes should really fight.

Maybe I should read the thieves forum area more?

I would like some advice from people and give your personal thoughts. I know thieves are difficult to play but I would really love to "master' or able to play them properly in order to enjoy the true aspect of a thief. Having all the mobility and sneak.

If you guys think I shouldn't play as a thief, feel free to state your opinions. I will take everyone's helpful advice and conclude on what to play as.

If it comes down to me having to drop thief, I was wondering which class would best suit a greatsword? Guardian to me would win over the flashy effect and eye candy moves compared to the warrior but I've read a lot that the warrior is well polished and some say it's a bit OP while other say it's on the top of the list of being balanced and well made by aNet.

Thank you so much for your time guys. I hope to really conclude on what to main. I will probably later on roll another character but it won't be for quite a long time.

Edited by Intercrew, 26 August 2012 - 02:37 AM.


#2 Trei

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 02:36 AM

This is a game twelve year olds can play...
What do you mean "hard"?


Edited by Trei, 26 August 2012 - 02:41 AM.


#3 munch

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 02:49 AM

I am guessing he's not 12 ...could be wrong though.

One thing I noticed is unlike other  games this one you can definitely move around while in combat and dodge. I have yet to try the two class....professions (YET) that your playing but that might be a subtle difference with playing GW2 vs others. I am having to learn that for my Elemental. I am sooo "trained" by other games to have to stand and cast where as here the auto attack lets me run and gun until I really get distance to try something a little heavier. Actually makes straffe worth having.

#4 eviator

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 02:55 AM

View PostIntercrew, on 26 August 2012 - 02:32 AM, said:

I guess if it wasn't for the initiative, I would play as thief, but it's very difficult to control how many hits you can land until you have to disappear/avoid from battle (am I right? thieves are more like fish and bait kinda style where they constantly use the shadows/speed to attack as much as possible than retreat as quickly as possible whether or not the foe is dead).

Or maybe I'm just playing the character not right? Again I'm very new to guildwars and because theres only really 5 "main" skills which are the weapons, and the rest being utility. I can't seem to find a good "combo" or a way of killing things. I always get hit after I land my first attack, and constantly not timing my dodge properly (not sure how to to be honest cause the flashy moves/effects are in the way for me to see clearly)

Personally I wouldn't play a thief like that. I wouldn't disappear once I ran out of initiative. I would jump in and land a few attacks, then stealth back out for a second, then hop back in for a few more strikes, rinse and repeat. Doing this keeps your initiative up, and greatly increases your survivability. May take a bit longer to kill stuff, and certainly means you can't faceroll the keyboard, but that style of play seems to jive well with the profession mechanics.

Edited by eviator, 26 August 2012 - 02:55 AM.


#5 jonsp

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 03:56 AM

The main thing I would suggest is learn how to circle strafe. Either hold down your strafe left + turn right keys or strafe right + turn left. If you use your mouse to turn, just strafe left or right and use the mouse to change your orientation. You end up running in a tight circle around your target and can pound on them with your auto-attack while they miss half the time because you're moving out of the way of their attacks.

Dodge is great for an escape, to give you a breather so you can use your heal or reposition, and to avoid big attacks with generous tells. But of course it's limited by endurance, and it's not so great against the smaller, short cooldown attacks, which can whittle you down fast with a steady stream of moderate damage. So in general, I suggest trying to avoid attacks by staying in motion and saving your dodge for "Oh sh*t!" moments.

My basic tactic when playing any melee build (can't take credit for it: picked it up watching much better players) is to move in on the target (use a leap or other gap-closer skill if I have one--thief has tons, including their steal ability, which teleports you to your target), then start circle strafing them. I try not to spam my skills, instead looking for opportunities to fire them off for best effect--stacking conditions, interrupting enemies' key skills with dazes/knockdowns/knockups, etc.--and I let my auto-attack sort of "fill in" for me while I'm either waiting for an optimal moment to use another skill, waiting for initiative to recharge, or waiting for skills to come off cool down.

With thief in particular, I try to go in fast and hard, blow off a lot of initiative, then circle and auto-attack while it rebuilds, then do it again. Double daggers, for example, I'll typically Heart Seeker in, immediately Death Blossom over my opponents, then circle + auto-attack and pop Death Blossom whenever I have enough init.

Of course there's all sorts of little variations and considerations. Warrior and Guardian melee weapons, for example, have some channeled skills and others that root you during activation. And of course it's hard to circle strafe in close quarters (narrow tunnels and such). But that's part of the fun of the game, figuring out all those little tactics.

One last suggestion with thief: look through your skills and take note of all your stealths, cripples, blinds, evades and other skills with defensive aspects. Thief has a LOT of skills that provide some form of defense (Death Blossom on Dagger/Dagger for example is also an evade, so you effectively dodge attacks while it executes).

Glad you're enjoying the game, and I hope you find some of this useful.

#6 Yski

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 04:15 AM

If you're playing a thief well, anything less than five levels above you shouldn't be too difficult to solo in melee. I'm sure there are as many ways to play a thief as there are thief players, but this is how I do it.

For melee I usually use sword/dagger, and I do almost exactly the opposite of what I think you're trying to do. Instead of shadowstepping in and burning all my initiative, I strafe around it and spam my skill 1 until it the enemy tries to attack. At that point I use skill 3(Flanking strike, evade + 2 attacks) or dodge. Another trick I have is to use Cloak and Dagger, followed by Tactical Strike(Stealth + Stealth skill --> 2s daze).

Simply put, don't let them hit you! You might also want to use a more defensive weapon set, as it's more important not to take damage than to deal it slightly faster. I'd say go find some ettins and try to kill some of them without taking damage, they give you a nice warning before attacking, so they're good practice targets.

#7 Katsuragisama

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 05:47 AM

As someone else said above, you're probably conditioned to sit still and hit your attacks, that's actually the last thing you want to do.

I was playing around earlier and ended up attacking 1 spider, and had 2 more aggro me.  It's already a 3 on 1 and I'm using double daggers.  I hit a few times with the slot 1 chain, waiting for the other 2 spiders to get within range.  Okay, Leaping Death Blossom time...  Apply poison and just used LDB as many times as possible, which means about 2-3 uses of it.  Now I also had one of those items that makes you vanish, plus my stealth+regen heal.  Use the item I stole, backstab one and he's dead, bleeding is killing them quickly.  Heal up, backstab out of stealth again, and finish the last one off with a couple heartseekers.

I'm usually pure direct DPS, but the bleeds have been proving themselves very useful in this game.  It's a very nice combo because LDB already makes you evade, does damage, adds a bleed effect, and while you're stealthed the bleeds are still eatting away at their health.  I've probably taken on quite a few groups of 3 I wouldnt have been able to otherwise.  But even without the bleeds remember to stay mobile.  You dont have RNG deciding whether or not you will dodge, you better get out of the way.   :lol:

#8 Intercrew

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 06:09 AM

View Postjonsp, on 26 August 2012 - 03:56 AM, said:

The main thing I would suggest is learn how to circle strafe. Either hold down your strafe left + turn right keys or strafe right + turn left. If you use your mouse to turn, just strafe left or right and use the mouse to change your orientation. You end up running in a tight circle around your target and can pound on them with your auto-attack while they miss half the time because you're moving out of the way of their attacks.

Dodge is great for an escape, to give you a breather so you can use your heal or reposition, and to avoid big attacks with generous tells. But of course it's limited by endurance, and it's not so great against the smaller, short cooldown attacks, which can whittle you down fast with a steady stream of moderate damage. So in general, I suggest trying to avoid attacks by staying in motion and saving your dodge for "Oh sh*t!" moments.

My basic tactic when playing any melee build (can't take credit for it: picked it up watching much better players) is to move in on the target (use a leap or other gap-closer skill if I have one--thief has tons, including their steal ability, which teleports you to your target), then start circle strafing them. I try not to spam my skills, instead looking for opportunities to fire them off for best effect--stacking conditions, interrupting enemies' key skills with dazes/knockdowns/knockups, etc.--and I let my auto-attack sort of "fill in" for me while I'm either waiting for an optimal moment to use another skill, waiting for initiative to recharge, or waiting for skills to come off cool down.

With thief in particular, I try to go in fast and hard, blow off a lot of initiative, then circle and auto-attack while it rebuilds, then do it again. Double daggers, for example, I'll typically Heart Seeker in, immediately Death Blossom over my opponents, then circle + auto-attack and pop Death Blossom whenever I have enough init.

Of course there's all sorts of little variations and considerations. Warrior and Guardian melee weapons, for example, have some channeled skills and others that root you during activation. And of course it's hard to circle strafe in close quarters (narrow tunnels and such). But that's part of the fun of the game, figuring out all those little tactics.

One last suggestion with thief: look through your skills and take note of all your stealths, cripples, blinds, evades and other skills with defensive aspects. Thief has a LOT of skills that provide some form of defense (Death Blossom on Dagger/Dagger for example is also an evade, so you effectively dodge attacks while it executes).

Glad you're enjoying the game, and I hope you find some of this useful.

View PostYski, on 26 August 2012 - 04:15 AM, said:

If you're playing a thief well, anything less than five levels above you shouldn't be too difficult to solo in melee. I'm sure there are as many ways to play a thief as there are thief players, but this is how I do it.

For melee I usually use sword/dagger, and I do almost exactly the opposite of what I think you're trying to do. Instead of shadowstepping in and burning all my initiative, I strafe around it and spam my skill 1 until it the enemy tries to attack. At that point I use skill 3(Flanking strike, evade + 2 attacks) or dodge. Another trick I have is to use Cloak and Dagger, followed by Tactical Strike(Stealth + Stealth skill --> 2s daze).

Simply put, don't let them hit you! You might also want to use a more defensive weapon set, as it's more important not to take damage than to deal it slightly faster. I'd say go find some ettins and try to kill some of them without taking damage, they give you a nice warning before attacking, so they're good practice targets.

View PostKatsuragisama, on 26 August 2012 - 05:47 AM, said:

As someone else said above, you're probably conditioned to sit still and hit your attacks, that's actually the last thing you want to do.

I was playing around earlier and ended up attacking 1 spider, and had 2 more aggro me.  It's already a 3 on 1 and I'm using double daggers.  I hit a few times with the slot 1 chain, waiting for the other 2 spiders to get within range.  Okay, Leaping Death Blossom time...  Apply poison and just used LDB as many times as possible, which means about 2-3 uses of it.  Now I also had one of those items that makes you vanish, plus my stealth+regen heal.  Use the item I stole, backstab one and he's dead, bleeding is killing them quickly.  Heal up, backstab out of stealth again, and finish the last one off with a couple heartseekers.

I'm usually pure direct DPS, but the bleeds have been proving themselves very useful in this game.  It's a very nice combo because LDB already makes you evade, does damage, adds a bleed effect, and while you're stealthed the bleeds are still eatting away at their health.  I've probably taken on quite a few groups of 3 I wouldnt have been able to otherwise.  But even without the bleeds remember to stay mobile.  You dont have RNG deciding whether or not you will dodge, you better get out of the way.   :lol:

Thank you so much guys, all of you have cleared up what I've been doing wrong and how I should improvise with the game instead of trying to figure out a solution of trying to find what class would work best. Any class can kill any other class in pvp as it's all tactic and how the player behind the screen is logically thinking. I haven't seen anyone post about traits but I learned (quote me if I'm wrong) that the way your thief is played is majorly influenced by what traits your using. For example the regular F1 steal only ports you to your enemy and steals an ability. But I've read from some people I've been playing with that if you manage your traits properly, you could have it so that you can port back to your original spot after stealing, which is very useful for some people.

I'll try my best to get as good as other thief players and hopefully anyone else thats having similar issues as I am, will learn that there is no best class, and the game is heavily influenced on what YOU do to customize your character and designing the skill aspects of what and not to do in situations where you don't have much time to think.

Thanks again guys!

P.S. Is gold hard to make in this game? I mean I'll probably reset my skill traits a couple of times and they apparently cost 1gold? which doesn't sound "a lot" but I am not to sure how the game economy is working at the moment.

#9 dynia666

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 07:19 AM

thief is hard to play ? //facepalm try ele then or memser

#10 Simon1812

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 07:33 AM

if the challenge is too much for you simply choose a different class.

#11 Scarlett Fenn

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 07:45 AM

CnD, Backstab, Heartseeker, move on to next mob.

#12 Ponzio

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 08:07 AM

One of the devs said necro was the hardest class to play followed up by the elementalist, than the mesmer and than the engineer. So thief is one of the 4 easier classes.

#13 dynia666

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 08:08 AM

unload > unload > unload > invis > backstab > invis > backstab > invis backstab > unload > unload > unload repeat  don't forget to dodge ^^

#14 Epic_Bear_Guy

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 08:44 AM

I'm breezing through the pve content on my thief. I'm having an easier time than my mesmer which is surprising. Give it more time you'll get used to it.

#15 Broadhead

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 09:12 AM

Hey all. Please forgive the dumb questions but when you all say dodge what exactly do you mean? Are you saying double tap the arrow key or is there a skill. The thief really interests me but I want to be able to get out of the way as I am apparently supposed to do. Do most of the skills put you in stealth and in stealth can the mobs still see you? Thanks

#16 Kokocat

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 09:18 AM

There are only a handful of stealth skills for the thief. Traiting for stealth helps. Mobs cannot detect you while in stealth but you can still be hit by attacks.

Dodge - Double Tap or whatever you rebind your key to.

Tip - Rebind your key to something comfortable. It is naturally set to V. Turn Double-Tap OFF by going into options.

Dodging allows a brief few seconds of immunity.

#17 kopesher

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 11:27 AM

Thief is not hard to play.

#18 Altissimus

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 12:26 PM

View Postkopesher, on 26 August 2012 - 11:27 AM, said:

Thief is not hard to play.

Yes, it is.  Clearly the OP thinks so, and there are several threads on here about the same thing.  So thanks for your really helpful post, but you've added nothing.

Thief struggles in solo-vs-multi mob situations.  On a one-on-one it's fine, but in a situation (such as some of the story quests) where you have to solo-vs-multi mobs, the thief is very hard to play.

#19 Shinimas

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 12:51 PM

View PostAltissimus, on 26 August 2012 - 12:26 PM, said:


Yes, it is.  Clearly the OP thinks so, and there are several threads on here about the same thing.  So thanks for your really helpful post, but you've added nothing.

Thief struggles in solo-vs-multi mob situations.  On a one-on-one it's fine, but in a situation (such as some of the story quests) where you have to solo-vs-multi mobs, the thief is very hard to play.

Position the mobs in a tight spot and spam Pistol Whip.

Thief isn't hard. Actually, all classes are all about finding an optimal strategy with every build. Then it's all about familiarizing yourself with it. It's not Soul Calibur, people.

#20 Altissimus

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 01:06 PM

View PostShinimas, on 26 August 2012 - 12:51 PM, said:

Position the mobs in a tight spot and spam Pistol Whip.

This doesn't hit multiple targets.

#21 CalmLittleBuddy

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 01:00 PM

What level did you get to? There are utility skills to get initiative back and a trait line that helps too. Or, do what I do and TIME your attacks so that you never run out. Remember, you have no cooldown, and so what initiative does is allow YOU to decide when to put stuff on cooldown. If you run out of initiative, then you've overused your 2 - 4 skills and need to pay for it.

I rarely run out until the very last seconds of a battle.

You have other skills. Use them.

#22 Spark026

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 02:10 PM

View PostAltissimus, on 26 August 2012 - 01:06 PM, said:

This doesn't hit multiple targets.

Pistol Whip does hit multiple targets in small area due to sword.

That said, this is somewhat dangerous cause you can get hit by all of them before the animation finishes.  Use "Haste" utility with it for large grps.

#23 ShezuTsukai

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 02:28 PM

One thing not mentioned yet that is very important especially to the thief with low health in PvE is equipment. If your gear, even one or two pieces aren't up to your level or more importantly the level of your opponents you will have great difficulties.

Check your gear then learn what weapon style you like. Because each set plays very differently. Eventually I got to the point that I'm switching weapon sets (not just the two set for swap) depending on what I'm facing. ie D/D and SB work great for mobs but P/P and S/D or S/P are awesome 1v1.

I haven't played Necro yet but Mes, ele and engineer all appeared much easier to me in PvE simply because they are default ranged and mostly AoE oriented.



#24 Red_Falcon

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 03:44 PM

It's not the Thief, it's just melee combat that needs some getting used to before you learn.
Actually, I find the Thief to be the easiest to play with out of the "melee classes", you can go out of combat on demand and deal massive damage while having incredible mobility.

The only issue I'm having is WvW. People on walls. 900 range. Not good.

Edited by Red_Falcon, 27 August 2012 - 03:45 PM.


#25 Intercrew

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 04:01 AM

I'm sure some of you may have seen some threads regarding myself having a difficult time playing as theif. I myself and others are probably really confused as to why I'm having a hard time playing as the class. I find it strange that I can't jump right into this game and play fluently and I usually learn stuff on my own to see what best suits me for build wise.

For pvp, I've seen a lot of videos where people go P/D and usually just stay back away from the enemies while their teammates are attacking. And just let the pistol auto attack do the job for nearly a minute or so then finish them off with either a bow or d/d.

Is this how thieves are supposed to be played in PvP? While in PvE, you would stick with the black powder skill from D/P and basically try your best to keep that spell up and running?

This question probably can't be answered but HOW are thieves should be played in PvE and PvP. What I'm probably trying to ask is what is the roll of the thieves. Because at first when I saw D/D videos, I thought okay the class is definitely for me as you use sneak to your advantage while focusing on melee. But now I look at it, thieves don't seem like it was meant to be melee based and more of a range and finish off type.

Guess a warrior or guardian will be more melee focused eh?

I don't want to switch to a warrior or guardian yet. As I'm still trying to explore the exact way of how I want to play the thief but I feel like I'm just not playing the class the way it should be played. I guess better to explain it, I'm playing like a warrior spamming death blossom and HF when using D/D. D/P I learned that it's useful in PvE with the black powder, backstab and such but in PvP the way it's played in PvE totally does not work LOL because everyone is always moving around.

As for SB (shortbow) haven't really seen people or videos of people playing it so I'm not exactly sure how to use it.

I guess for PvP it would be best to go D/D and D/P (when not in range) and use D/D to finish them off.

I would like some tips my ol dear mentors.

You guys have greatly helped me previously

and I sticked to the thief even though it is difficult to play. But once you know how to use them, they seem/are very deadly as I'm sure everyone has seen thief PvP videos :)

Cheers,

Intercrew

EDIT: I've seen a lot of videos where people dodge and while dodging they drop spikes which cause I believe bleeding damage or so. I found to skill for it but it takes time to case and it also doesn't perform a dodge roll, anyone know what I'm talking about?

And do you guys have Auto attack enabled or disabled for all the spells?

I've also noticed that there's a cooldown upon weapon set switching from time to time, anyone knows whats the cause of this so I know when to exactly switch? Seems like it's happening while in combat

Edited by Intercrew, 28 August 2012 - 04:08 AM.


#26 CyberAssassin

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 10:10 AM

i understand where you are coming from op, i had a hard time figuring out the theif at first.

it takes time. just keep leveling up and get your butt beat a bit before you learn. mobility is most heavily necessary for a thief compared to other classes. you just simply do not want to get hit, and the theif has plenty of tools to not getting hit.

if you REALLY cant use a theif, just practice using P/P and spam 1 skill and 3 skill unload and get use to dodging. once you get good at that then move on to harder weapon sets.

#27 Intercrew

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 01:25 PM

View PostCyberAssassin, on 28 August 2012 - 10:10 AM, said:

i understand where you are coming from op, i had a hard time figuring out the theif at first.

it takes time. just keep leveling up and get your butt beat a bit before you learn. mobility is most heavily necessary for a thief compared to other classes. you just simply do not want to get hit, and the theif has plenty of tools to not getting hit.

if you REALLY cant use a theif, just practice using P/P and spam 1 skill and 3 skill unload and get use to dodging. once you get good at that then move on to harder weapon sets.

The bottom paragraph is probably what I did for the past 6 or so hours, never died once during the WvWvW and just kept on killing people from the distance. Of course it was pretty boring for me to do 1 and 3, with minor changes with the bow.

Seems like it'll take me quite a bit of time to learn how to play the close range style that you see a lot in pvp videos.

#28 sync

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 01:42 PM

View PostIntercrew, on 28 August 2012 - 01:25 PM, said:

The bottom paragraph is probably what I did for the past 6 or so hours, never died once during the WvWvW and just kept on killing people from the distance. Of course it was pretty boring for me to do 1 and 3, with minor changes with the bow.

Seems like it'll take me quite a bit of time to learn how to play the close range style that you see a lot in pvp videos.
PVP is very different than PVE. This is the PVE Thief forum and you are getting PVE advice here. There is a separate PVP Thief forum.

#29 TiffyMissWiffy

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 02:11 PM

I find one-on-one very easy, get ambushed by a mob I am done for.

#30 Aegon VI

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 09:57 PM

View Postdynia666, on 26 August 2012 - 07:19 AM, said:

thief is hard to play ? //facepalm try ele then or memser
Ele is hard? :huh:




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