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[Ranger PVE] Liru's Critical/Pet Synergy Build Guide

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#1 Liru

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Posted 03 September 2012 - 01:30 PM

Liru's Critical/Pet Synergy Build Guide

Hi all, after posting my build and giving updates along my character progression I've had a few people ask me to make a guide to provide additional insight on the different choices I made. I've detailed it below and will provide updates as I move forward in GW2. Wall of text incoming.

Intro - Why I made this build

As an avid Guild Wars player (logged 2600hrs on my Ranger) I've always loved the profession and jack-of-all-trades style attached to it. In particular, I loved how many different ways the ranger could be played (BA Degen, Barrage/Pet, BHA Epidemic, Cripshot, Dagger/Scythe Expertise, Trapping, Running, just to name a few). I think the GW2 Ranger, which is different in many ways, can still be played in very different styles.

I wanted to make my GW2 human ranger (Azraell, add me!) a dignified, intelligent leader, not a happy treehugger like the profession's name might suggest. I therefore explored what was possible for rangers outside of conditions, which fit with the naturey side. Although this becomes limiting (as traps, spirits, and many other skills & traits tend towards conditions), I found several great aspects in the ranger that can be build into a powerful crit-based build, which closely fits with the vision of my character.

Liru's Critical/Pet Synergy Build

First things first - the link (will be constantly updated as I refine my build).

Key Points:
  • PVE, power/crit focused build
  • Great synergy with pets
  • A bit of AOE, enough for 90% of PVE scenarios I've run into
  • Sword/Horn is most fun weapon combo IMO, Shortbow is a machine gun
  • Little ability to withstand damage, but great mobility & evasion
Weapon choice:
  • Shortbow: FAST! Great for stacking crits, highly mobile, cripple & stun CCs. This weapon is great because it keeps you on your toes, forcing you to flank, and greatly rewards skilled players with huge damage. Piercing Arrows gives the shortbow great AOE for 90% of cases.
  • Sword: Aah, my one true love. Good damage, a bit of AOE, but more importantly the FASTEST weapon in the ranger's arsenal. You'll see why this is important with the traits below. [2] and [3] offer great evades which, along with dodge, helps counteract the build's low toughness & HP. The animation also looks great!
  • Warhorn: Big uptime of AOE Swiftness, Fury & Might = OP. Also, birdies. Nuff said.
Utility skill & Elites:
  • Quickening Zephyr: This skill is an absolute beast, even with the long cooldown. You attack with your sword twice as fast (which is very, very fast!) and therefore double your amount of crits. This skill absolutely melts through any PVE mob's HP bar. Bonus effect: reviving (and mining!) twice as fast.
  • Signet of the Wild & Signet of Stone: These two skills severely increase you and your pet's survival rate with additional toughness & regen. Stone's active acts as a panic button as you F3 your pet out of the battle so it doesn't die (to keep the low cooldown on pet swap).
  • Rampage as One: RaO was a great skill in GW and remains so in GW2. The Fury, Stability, Swiftness & Might buffs transform you into an unbeatable juggernaut, which added with QZ & Call of the Wild lets you solo mobs sometimes 5 levels higher than you.
  • Healing: anything you like. Everyone has his own preference. I use Healing Spring in general for team buffing & condition removal. A few great topics on the ranger subforum cover this extensively.
Trait choice (20/30/5/0/15):

This is where this build really shines. The traits I've used focus on the synergy between critical hits and pet damage output, so both me and my pet deal as much damage as possible to the target. Let me show you why all the choices in this guide fit together:
  • Marksmanship: Opening Strike & Alpha Training both serve one purpose: stack vulnerably on your foe to rip him to shreds. Steady Focus & Piercing arrows transform you into an AOE machine gun when switching to your shortbow.
  • Skirmishing: my favorite trait line - In addition to raising your crit chance & damage, the traits in this line offer great synergy with pets. Pet's Prowess combined with a feline pet (high crit chance) means insane damage coming from the little thing. Add Furious Grip and your will raise it even further. But Companion's Might is the overall best trait IMO: every time you crit (and this is why you want QZ and Fury!) your pet gains Might. Carnivorous appetite aligned with your utility skills and the JAguar's F2 stealph make your pet very, very hard to kill.
  • Wilderness survival: Although this is a crit oriented build, the ten points in WS give a world of good: the +50% endurance regen adds to your mobility & damage thanks to Steady Focus in MM, and Expertise Training adds to your pet damage even more. Note: You can take Wilderness Knowledge (20% Survival skill recharge to have QZ more often if you prefer).
  • Beastmastery: Masters Bond. That's all there is to it. By rapidly gaining stacks, your pet becomes an invincible killing machine. Note: do NOT let your pet die! If your pet gets under 20% health, use Signet of Stone, Jaguar F2, F3, or switch to bear. I repeat, do NOT let your pet die!
Pets:
  • Jaguar & Lynx: These two kitties are your main partners & damage dealers and will be out 80% of the time (a part from very difficult mobs where you need a bear to tank or devourers for ranged). Feline pets have 2100 precision which added to buffs from traits leads to insane amounts of damage. They have remarkably high survivability, and look great! Mine are called Nibbles One and Two. Remember to switch between them often (for regen & quickness).
  • Brown Bear: This little guy is a tanking powerhouse. Once the enemy has focused on him, you can attack like crazy knowing that the bear can withstand a huge amount of hurt. The F2 is useful for a condition cleaner (I hate being crippled) but you can switch to an Arctodus for the bleeds instead. Mine is called Desmond the Moon Bear
  • For additional details on pets, check out Sycthrex's amazing Pet Guide.
Misc:
  • For Runes & Insignias, you can decide to play either glass cannon or more tanky with Runes of Divinity, which I'm running now. I use the Quickness sigils as you will quick very often and it is a very easy way to double your damage output for a short period of time.
  • Take care to keep improving precision or your critical hit rate will decrease rapidly as you level up.
General tips:
  • Pets can attack a different target than you using F1. This is fantastic to rapidly fill hearts as using this build your pet will be able to take down just about any mob alone.
  • While under level 80, I'd suggest a general leveling priority of skirmishing > beastmastery > marksmanship.
  • Keep your pet alive using F2, F3, F4 and signet of stone - no excuses. However, swap often - the quickness is really that good.
  • For dungeons: I will write a more comprehensive dungeon section in the future. For now: focus on shortbow, switch to horn to buff you and your team, switch to a longbow if you need heavy AOE. For pets, use double cats on bosses, bears & devourers/spiders for anything else.
How it's going so far

Current level: 80

I've reached level 80 and this build is still as good and fun to play as it was at lower levels. I can rapidly melt through most enemies and the need for mobility/evasion keeps me on my toes.

Older: level 50

Build has been fantastic so far. Very low resistance to damage, but the huge damage output & overall fun experience is completely worth it. I'm still not 100% certain on using longbow as offhand weapon, but otherwise I'm pretty set (comments always welcome!).

The one annoyance I still have is that Sword [1] locks you in place. Although this means your character is always in range, it can make dodging out of heavy enemy attacks buggy and I've died several times when I could easily have evaded - I'm sure Anet will correct this once they have taken care of the larger priority issues.

Just a quick note: I am one of the rare players who think pets are in a good shape right now and with proper management, will not die and can deal massive amounts of damage. Even the pet AI is okay IMO - I'd just wish pets could jump down walls without me having to store or switch them.

Closing comments

The ranger is in a great place right now and I really like how they've built the class. I'm a fervent believer that there is no "best build" out there and all ideas are viable depending on how they are played - you might find that you prefer the typical SB & Axe/Horn condition build over mine. On the other hand, please don't hesitate to try this out and leave feedback, I'm learning along all of you and there is always ways to improve.

See you ingame!

Changelog

1.1: Level 80 edit: switched to Shortbow, Jaguar pet. Optimized traits. Dungeon part coming soon.
1.2: Switched to dual cat Mighty Swap. Added General tips section. Still need to do dungeon & wvw parts :<

Edited by Liru, 02 October 2012 - 11:45 AM.


#2 SesimieStreetFighter

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Posted 03 September 2012 - 01:41 PM

nice guide...

I'm a level 40 Ranger and i'm having a blast!! But I must admit I'm just choosing my skills and traits with pet survival initially....but now my evasion skills are honed to the point where nothing reaches me.....so I'm ready to start pouring on burst damage... I've yet to make 1 gold so I cannot reach tier 2 on my traits....but I have to admit your guide has me rethinking my build!! Keep up the good work!

#3 Razor66

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Posted 03 September 2012 - 02:20 PM

Very interesting build, I do wonder how usable it is for dungeons though since the amount of AoE damage will probably kill your pets all the time.

#4 Liru

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Posted 03 September 2012 - 02:23 PM

View PostRazor66, on 03 September 2012 - 02:20 PM, said:

Very interesting build, I do wonder how usable it is for dungeons though since the amount of AoE damage will probably kill your pets all the time.

Great question - I did AC this weekend and it's true that the pet functionality was reduced. In that case I switched to two bears who were able to tank the mobs while the rest of our team threw out damage. Signet of Stone is really useful in that case.

#5 cMonry

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Posted 03 September 2012 - 04:44 PM

View PostLiru, on 03 September 2012 - 02:23 PM, said:

Great question - I did AC this weekend and it's true that the pet functionality was reduced. In that case I switched to two bears who were able to tank the mobs while the rest of our team threw out damage. Signet of Stone is really useful in that case.

In my opinion the best choice for dungeons is bear (he can tank trash mobs/minions for a short time) and ranged pet of your choice (for boss fights to increase your damage output and not die on AoE).

#6 MrKayako

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Posted 03 September 2012 - 05:34 PM

I like the panther instead of the bird, the stealth gives him survivability and he does lots of damage, less vitality but is cast time is faster so. Atm I play with two trap that I can throw, with the shortbow as my main weapon. Makes me able to slow mobs put more dmg to kill faster and kill larger group of mob faster and better, but I use bith signet instead of trap with the heal pet crits trait to instead of the throw trap and size trait when I don't want to pay too much attention cause I watch a serie or something while playing :D

But when I play play, I prefer the traps: a little combo field fire and bleed/slow in throw is amazing x) And to kill larger group it's better I think. And the CD is so low you can throw them all the time, when the signet effects have a CD a bit bigger x)

#7 Trelari

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Posted 03 September 2012 - 08:28 PM

Great Guide Liru - Only question I have is what are your stat priorites when looking for armor and weapons? I'm going to assume it's precision above everything. Just thought I'd ask though. Keep up the great work.

#8 Liru

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Posted 03 September 2012 - 08:31 PM

View PostTrelari, on 03 September 2012 - 08:28 PM, said:

Great Guide Liru - Only question I have is what are your stat priorites when looking for armor and weapons? I'm going to assume it's precision above everything. Just thought I'd ask though. Keep up the great work.

Yes. Precision & +X critical damage :)

#9 Dixa

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Posted 03 September 2012 - 08:43 PM

i've done all of the weapons now and i keep going back to shortbow/longbow

if you know how and when to swap weapons, nothing touches you and everything dies stupid fast. with a power/crit/condition build (remember, gear has 3 stats at 60+)

birds and cats both end up with 2100 precision. birds replace one of the cat dd abilities for the 20s cd swiftness buff. cats will do more damage but are harder to keep alive in late game

of all the bears you should be using the polar bear. it has the same stats as all of the other bears EXCEPT it has higher base power. it's pbaoe chill is also nice when dealing with mobs that won't stay on your pet.


truthfully to bottom line this class, it's all about knowing when to swap pets and weapons in combat, knowing what utility skills to have at the ready for different scenarios and knowing instinctively when your abilities are off cd without having to glance at the bar.

Edited by Dixa, 03 September 2012 - 09:14 PM.


#10 Smokingjoe82

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Posted 04 September 2012 - 03:11 PM

Still trying to learn how everything works - GW newbie.
I have fallen in love with the longbow/Shortbow combo, as I am mildly obsessed with archery in real life, and always saw a Ranger as a class that excels at ranged weapons.
Would this build be viable with that weapon combo, even though you mention sword/horn as your main weapon combo?

#11 cMonry

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Posted 04 September 2012 - 03:28 PM

View PostSmokingjoe82, on 04 September 2012 - 03:11 PM, said:

Still trying to learn how everything works - GW newbie.
I have fallen in love with the longbow/Shortbow combo, as I am mildly obsessed with archery in real life, and always saw a Ranger as a class that excels at ranged weapons.
Would this build be viable with that weapon combo, even though you mention sword/horn as your main weapon combo?

I'm using near equal build and I think you can try with Longbow/Shortbow combo, but shortbow uniqual bleeding effects will not be maximized without +condition damage traits. I really think that you should give a try to sword/horn as it is a lot of fun.
Personally I use longbow very often, it is a good weapon in connection with your bear for locations that you don't know and when you don't know what to expect. I'm switching for sword/horn+bird when I get to know what to expect from enemies or when playing with other people. I don't remember when I died last time. It is superb build and with s/h+bear you can kill 2/3 enemies with your lvl or even +1/+2 in few seconds since sword #1 skill hits multiple targets, so lvling is quite fast.

Edited by cMonry, 04 September 2012 - 03:29 PM.


#12 907gamer

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Posted 04 September 2012 - 04:37 PM

I am running a build very similar to this and have found very few issues. I run three sigs instead of QZ, but I guess that's personal opinion. Crit/Condition builds are the best right now for just about any class.

#13 Smokingjoe82

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Posted 04 September 2012 - 05:30 PM

ok, guess I will try to find a decent sword/horn combo for my level and try it out, replaceing the shortbow (which I admittedly don't use very much anyway).  Might be useful to have a melee range weapon for when the knockback move is on cooldown.  Will also give a bird a try (been using brown bear and drakehound (think thats right).

When you guys start a fight, do you attack first (this is what I have been doing), or send your pet in first then you engage once it has?

#14 SnakeStrife

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Posted 04 September 2012 - 06:17 PM

I've been running something very similar and I'm glad that someone else is using the Sword/Horn build =). Just thought I'd mention something that has helped me out on this build.

You mention being locked down when using the Sword [1] Skill and not being able to evade. I had this problem as well and a big help was turning off that autoattack skill by Ctrl rightclicking the skill. It means you have to constantly bash the "1" key but its worth being able to dodge when you wan't (Although you still have to wait for the last attack to finish, but it will no longer do that werid glitch where it looks like you dodge only to be still attacking the enemy.)

Very nice build guide Liru.

Current Level:48

Edited by SnakeStrife, 04 September 2012 - 06:18 PM.


#15 BuzWeaver

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Posted 04 September 2012 - 08:15 PM

Very nice. I'm just getting started and this gives me a great template.

#16 Nyth

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Posted 04 September 2012 - 09:39 PM

Great guide. I've pretty much been running a similar kind of build (although with a shortbow) for a long time. After I picked up the Master Training Manual at level 45 I decided that in the 15 levels I could test out a new build, so I swapped away for it in favor of a Longbow powerhouse build.
Nontheless I miss my pet being able to chew through mobs, so I might go back at level 60.

I have some suggestions though; some food for thought.

First of all, I've been mostly playing with birds as well, but I do notice that felines are generally better for damage. The double crits on the birds look nice, but due to their animation they have a rather annoying attack pattern that might take away from. Cats (for example the Jaguar) might be an alternative checking into. Also I could be totally wrong here, but when checking the effect of masters bond back at level 25 it almost seemed as if cats gained more damage (i noticed +10) on their attacks compared to birds (+3 on each hit), which might be due to the double hit being actually one attack.

A second thing I'm wondering is; why not put more points into beastmastery. Quite frankly you don't seem to get all that much out of the Marksman tree. Piercing arrows is nice but beyond that you don't really pick up anything huge (I regard openings strike as a rather poor mechanic, the vulnerability is minimal and the crit doesn't add all that much when you're running as much as you do). Instead you could put more points in beastmaster, picking up the cat's bleed on crit or if you want to stick with birds you could grab the 10% faster recharge on their skills (awesome synergy with skirmishing as it means they attack faster).

View PostLiru, on 03 September 2012 - 01:30 PM, said:

Just a quick note: I am one of the rare players who think pets are in a good shape right now and with proper management, will not die and can deal massive amounts of damage. Even the pet AI is okay IMO - I'd just wish pets could jump down walls without me having to store or switch them.

Frankly I doubt there are many that think pets are really all that bad in a leveling PvE environment. In fact I think pets make rangers one of the strongest "grinding" classes. Masters bond and the signets quickly fix whatever weakness non-bear pets might seem to have and mine regularly tank veterans or a small group of mobs.

The gripe with pets comes more into play in PvP and Dungeons though; not sure how much experience you have with dungeons (I don't have too much yet), but even just judging on the bigger dynamic events you can notice that pets become a bit more brittle. I've seen random AoE take down my wolf pet in less than 2 seconds even though he had 25 master's bond and both signets; I assume similar situations present themselves in dungeons.
PvP is another story as well, even though you can make pets work. The different environment without Master's Bond and without the signets (who aren't an option) create more fragile pets again quickly going down from being in a bad place when a warrior swings his greatsword, or a thief uses leaping death blossom (if you can find one that's not heartseeker spamming that is).
I guess that's where the pet disappointment mostly comes from at the moment.

#17 Liru

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Posted 05 September 2012 - 07:53 AM

View PostNyth, on 04 September 2012 - 09:39 PM, said:

snip

I'm very curious about your idea of going 20/30/0/0/20 and focusing more on pet, as the value Opening Strike isn't fully understood yet. I'll look into it in the coming days and get back to you on results. I'll also give the jaguar a try - although its F2 is defensive, it might work better with Master's Bond & other Beastmastery traits.

Thanks for the input!

#18 Dixa

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Posted 05 September 2012 - 08:09 AM

something to keep in mind is that the 70+ game is different than what you deal with previously (in the level appropriate areas that is). your pets won't be tanking for you because the mobs largely ignore them. they go right. for. you.

mob packs are dense and quick to respawn. farmers running to the next node will train you constantly and mobs do not reset, they attack the nearest PC.

that extra 10 in bm isn't going to do anymore for you than the last 10 in marksmanship, and you will find yourself relying on your traps a lot as you run around trying not to get stomped to death or are unable to spam other abilities due to 4-5 stacks of confusion. conditions become common and i find i never go without the condition removal signet anymore.

#19 ShadeMoon

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Posted 05 September 2012 - 10:03 AM

I've tried all weapon combos and i have to say longbow and great sword with signet of stone and signet of the wind plus signet of renewal and rage as one with great sword is a killing machine. I have brown bear and carrion lashtail and it's actually pathetic the way mobs go down.

Edited by ShadeMoon, 05 September 2012 - 10:07 AM.


#20 SlappedYak

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Posted 05 September 2012 - 10:16 AM

I like the build, and I like how you explained your choices well in your guide (and I happen to agree with a lot of them, shortbow + sword 1h yes please!) It's really important that guides and builds for rangers talk about pets as being a major part of ranger gameplay, so thumbs up for reinforcing that :D

>A little note on offhands and my own reasons- I happen to disagree that with a 1h sword horn is the best offhand option, yes hunters call is my favourite skill animation, of all time! but I see axe/horn as the best combo in a precision oriented build where crits are used to provide bleed stacks or buffs to pet (e.g. might stacks...)
For sword, offhand dagger has a good ranged snare AND an evasive strike, which adds to this overall survivability and mobility of a ranger in melee (so you don't have to pump *too* much into vitality just to survive taking a beating...because hopefully you won't be getting hit at all!!) For pve, I actually really like sword-torch combo - setting people on fire ftw...and also monarchs leap (the second part of hornet's sting) if you throw down a bonfire FIRST, and THEN the hornets sting backtowards your oponent, as you fly through the area the bonfire "Fire" field will be triggered by the "leap" finisher and you'll have a nice "fire aura" as you then proceed to dart and jump around them with your sword.

>Pets are personal preference, although I love my ravens <33 they are too squishy for my particular style (especially monster AI seems to ALWAYS pick my pet over me - something I use to my advantage and anchor them while I flank with short bow and get some rapid bleed stacks with QZ and autofire >.<) and I have to say I tend to go for panthers (or "jaguars" as they are called for some reason in game!) because of their f2 stealth, that gives them a few seconds of breathing space if they're getting beaten up and my swap is on cool down, giving me time to launch myself into melee range and start taking some of the beating.

>Ranger utilities... spike trap is just...the shizzle xD it really is...at the moment I've got sig of stone for "emergencies" when I need my pet to hold aggro and her feline squishyness is letting her down :( QZ again...ranger's best skill. By far. God it kicks ass. RaO to take advantage of all those traits in you and your pet :D it;s really only sig of stone I think i'd ever consider changing for casual pve (I predict end game sig of renewal will be much more useful for stun break if nothing else)

I also find bears "boring" xD and they are terrible "tanks" for harder enemies/bigger bosses. In those cases I prefer "ranged" pets who stay away from the fight like me and avoid trying to pet tank altogether - (I've yet to be truly brave enough to go toe to toe with a big boss with my 1h sword...)


But yes, thanks for sharing this thread is giving me new ideas already GO RANGERS *cheer*

Edited by SlappedYak, 05 September 2012 - 10:21 AM.


#21 SlappedYak

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Posted 05 September 2012 - 10:26 AM

View PostSmokingjoe82, on 04 September 2012 - 05:30 PM, said:

When you guys start a fight, do you attack first (this is what I have been doing), or send your pet in first then you engage once it has?

In pve for whatever reason (I don't claim to know exactly how monster aggro is determined!) monsters pretty much always go for my pet first, so I'm pretty safe from 1 on 1 until my pet is down (on invisible) I tend to use this to my advantage, hit them with a cripple first, THEN my pet runs in - a wierd little mechanic often has the mob "over running" towards me and then they switch to my pet once it's past them (possibly due to the fact my pet has a speed boost on it). This nearly always makes the mob then turn around to fight my pet - i.e. it has its back to me - which I can just abuse with shortbow and flanking bonuses (skirmishing). Even if this doesn't happen all the time I am constantly moving to their flank whilst in combat because of that shortbow wonderfulness. In gw2 pets hold aggro really easily, so even if you attack first the mob will tend to focus on your pet.

Edited by SlappedYak, 05 September 2012 - 10:26 AM.


#22 Liru

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Posted 05 September 2012 - 12:15 PM

View PostSlappedYak, on 05 September 2012 - 10:16 AM, said:

I like the build, and I like how you explained your choices well in your guide (and I happen to agree with a lot of them, shortbow + sword 1h yes please!) It's really important that guides and builds for rangers talk about pets as being a major part of ranger gameplay, so thumbs up for reinforcing that :D

>A little note on offhands and my own reasons- I happen to disagree that with a 1h sword horn is the best offhand option, yes hunters call is my favourite skill animation, of all time! but I see axe/horn as the best combo in a precision oriented build where crits are used to provide bleed stacks or buffs to pet (e.g. might stacks...)
For sword, offhand dagger has a good ranged snare AND an evasive strike, which adds to this overall survivability and mobility of a ranger in melee (so you don't have to pump *too* much into vitality just to survive taking a beating...because hopefully you won't be getting hit at all!!) For pve, I actually really like sword-torch combo - setting people on fire ftw...and also monarchs leap (the second part of hornet's sting) if you throw down a bonfire FIRST, and THEN the hornets sting backtowards your oponent, as you fly through the area the bonfire "Fire" field will be triggered by the "leap" finisher and you'll have a nice "fire aura" as you then proceed to dart and jump around them with your sword.

...

But yes, thanks for sharing this thread is giving me new ideas already GO RANGERS *cheer*

Warhorn vs Dagger

Thanks for the input! I'm curious about the offhand dagger - I wouldn't mind adding an extra evasion skill, especially considering the 1H locking you in place, but I'm concerned about two aspects:
  • I'll be missing out on Call of the Wild's Fury buff. As the whole build is based on crits, I'm very skeptical about letting this go.
  • The dagger's ranger snare is naturally useful in WvW & PvP (and I think I'll be running that), but for PVE, which the guide is built for, you don't really need it as much. Additionally, the Sword [1] skill has a cripple already.
I'd love to have everyone's input on this.

#23 Nyth

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Posted 05 September 2012 - 02:21 PM

View PostLiru, on 05 September 2012 - 12:15 PM, said:

Warhorn vs Dagger

Thanks for the input! I'm curious about the offhand dagger - I wouldn't mind adding an extra evasion skill, especially considering the 1H locking you in place, but I'm concerned about two aspects:
  • I'll be missing out on Call of the Wild's Fury buff. As the whole build is based on crits, I'm very skeptical about letting this go.
  • The dagger's ranger snare is naturally useful in WvW & PvP (and I think I'll be running that), but for PVE, which the guide is built for, you don't really need it as much. Additionally, the Sword [1] skill has a cripple already.
I'd love to have everyone's input on this.

Always a tough choice. I do think that the dagger fits the sword MH really well, but I personally wouldn't want to go without at least one short/medium cooldown mobility buff/skill. Be it Call of the Wild, or Swoop (greatsword),  RaO works great as well (to be frank, besides on champion mobs and those big group events, nearly all my Rampages go to out of combat swiftness), but has a long cooldown.

With Sword/Dagger you have a solid combo but you'll miss out if you don't take the greatsword or another offhand. This is also the reason I don't like to go with double bows while leveling, because it almost literally drags me down :P
(Purely from leveling/PvE point of view, where Quality of Life abilities are sometimes more important than more damage and whatnot).

This why I always roll with either a greatsword (Swoop is amazing especially in WvW) or an offhand Horn.

You can make a case for the Fury buff as well, although so far in situations where I really "needed" it, I nearly always have access to Rampage as One and in emergencies a weapon swap (which gives you fury through the minor master trait). This doesn't take away that warhorn and call of the wild are still amazing, but you should have access to on demand fury at nearly any point.

#24 SlappedYak

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 08:51 AM

View PostLiru, on 05 September 2012 - 12:15 PM, said:

Warhorn vs Dagger

Thanks for the input! I'm curious about the offhand dagger - I wouldn't mind adding an extra evasion skill, especially considering the 1H locking you in place, but I'm concerned about two aspects:
  • I'll be missing out on Call of the Wild's Fury buff. As the whole build is based on crits, I'm very skeptical about letting this go.
  • The dagger's ranger snare is naturally useful in WvW & PvP (and I think I'll be running that), but for PVE, which the guide is built for, you don't really need it as much. Additionally, the Sword [1] skill has a cripple already.
I'd love to have everyone's input on this.

I run a full 30 in skirmishing so I get my fury from the weapon switch at the start of the chain xD I like warhorn for pve for the general speed boost (and like I said, awesome animation :D) but because of the cool down on CotW i find it's useful only at the start of a fight. The dagger snare is definitely aimed for pvp use but I still use it in pve when trying to hold aggro of a mobile foe - the evasion skill far outshines this in pve though, especially because of the lack of mobility with the [1] chain.  Not a lot of love is given to torch offhand though, and in pvp I can see why (the tiny aoe and slow ranged attack are far too easy to avoid) but in pve, dropping and bonfire ontop of the mob you're meleeing... is a lot of fun. I use a condition build, so out of all my offhand options torch gives me that "extra" condition to stack up.

Edited by SlappedYak, 06 September 2012 - 08:52 AM.


#25 SlappedYak

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 08:55 AM

View PostLiru, on 05 September 2012 - 07:53 AM, said:

I'm very curious about your idea of going 20/30/0/0/20 and focusing more on pet, as the value Opening Strike isn't fully understood yet. I'll look into it in the coming days and get back to you on results. I'll also give the jaguar a try - although its F2 is defensive, it might work better with Master's Bond & other Beastmastery traits.

Thanks for the input!

I have to say I don't understand "opening strike"... I mean I know it applies vulnerability, but due to the semi-recent change in that condition, vuln is only a 1% increase in damage for the whole battle? Using that trait line alone there's no way to apply any kind of stack to the same individual you're fighting. The best reason to take 30 in marks would be for the GM trait, sig of beastmaster and a full utility set up of signets but I'm sure they've changed that from all effects of sigs (i.e. passive and active) to only the active buffs, so even that's lost its appeal to me :/

For me the skirmishing trait line is vastly superior to any ranger with a condition/pet focus rather than the pure dmg of marks (I actually run with 0 points in marks...though I am considering shuffling 10 from nature magic...) 30 in skirmishing, benefits not just your own damage but your pets. I also tend to pop 20-30 in BM, because even though the GM traits are a bit rubbish...empathy is a ridiculously good attribute, I think it really beefs up the role of a pet in any build (actually I usually go with 25 because the GM traits are underwhelming, and I like a sneaky 5 in wild surv for 50% extra endurance...yes please!)

[p.s. sorry for spamming your thread with posts xD]

#26 Kaleros

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 03:31 PM

World: Sorrow's Furnace
Race: Norn
Level: 80

So far I've leveled from 1-80 with Longbow/Shortbow combo, I've found that it works great. I've tried both sides of the tree with this, focus Shortbow primary with Precision/+Crit Dmg/Cond Dmg, and then swapped back to Power/Prec/+Crit Dmg because the longbow is just far superior in the late game. If you trait for the Longbow range and damage increase, the longbow hits harder than any other weapon in the ranger's arsenal.  The longbow also allows you outrange most every enemy's attack at max range.(Tested and proven against the Sovereign Eye of Zhaitan, personal story mission).  For my personal selection of utilties I use.

Healing - Healing Spring (Underwater - Heal as One)

Slot 1 - Quickening Zephyr-Increases longbow AA to that of the shortbows, also i haven't seen anyone mention this yet, but QZ can be really useful if you are trying to slow down a group of enemies coming at you quickly, QZ+Barrage is a full barrage coming down but with half the channel time.

Slot 2 - Signet of the Wild - Great skill for PvE as it allows you to hit harder than you already do with your longbow, not to mention the passive is great for PvE.

Slot 3 -  This is my optional slot, I swap it around in a dungeon depending on the fight, mostly keep SotH slotted for 10% speed increase, but for cond. heavy fights, i'll throw in renewal, if it's a heavy hitting fight that i'm forced to be closed to the boss, then SoS.

Elite - Rampage as One - You just can't get better than this for PvE, Stability, Might, Fury, Swiftness, Combine this with SotW/QZ you and you're pet both get about 8-10 stacks of might instantly, You have officially become a WMD.

Granted, I swap some of those around sometimes.  As far as traits go I use a 30/30/0/0/10, same as OP, but I have been considering dropping 5 from Skirmishing for the same as Acolyte for 5 in Wild Surv. can't beat 50% extra endurance regen. Thank you for you're time sorry I'm cutting it off briefly.

P.S. - Lightning Reflexes is another good ability for anyone wanting more endurance regen in fights.

#27 Xunin

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 07:37 PM

According to the wiki, Companion's might don't proc of the ranger's crits; only the pet's. And I suppose Carnivorous Appetite works the same.

#28 Fizzgig

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 11:59 PM

For all you people wanting to test out builds. You know you cn just go to the mists spvp muster area and have a full lev 80 with all skills and triats unlocked as well as full gear sets. You can just test stuff out on the golems there and even fight npcs which have skills that other players or mobs would use on you.

On a side note the f2 skill imo is too buggy atm to focus on when it comes to a pet. I mean you have to spam the button to get it to fire off and when it does there is a huge delay.

I rather go for a pet that has some sort of condition attached to it's auto attack.

Edited by Fizzgig, 10 September 2012 - 12:03 AM.


#29 Peon

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Posted 10 September 2012 - 02:50 AM

View PostXunin, on 09 September 2012 - 07:37 PM, said:

According to the wiki, Companion's might don't proc of the ranger's crits; only the pet's. And I suppose Carnivorous Appetite works the same.

I've just tested it in Mists on Test dummies, I was watching if pet critical hit will proc Might and it doesn't  ( I was using Lynx which has high precision so he was criting quite a lot ). Then I started to hit target dummy with my Ranger ( was using Shortbow as weapon ) and it was proccing from every crit I hit

#30 hoplite

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Posted 11 September 2012 - 07:27 AM

Very interesting build, but how viable is this build in PVP?





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