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Xsel's Guide to the Shortbow

shortbow ranger xsel trap zephyr build guide

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#1 Isms

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 03:55 PM

Hey everyone, Isms here (known as Xsel on Ranger). I've had a lot of recent messages from in game players, as well as some here asking for my build. I've had alot of success with Ranger since I started playing him, and It's came from very cookie-cutter builds (according to trait descriptions). The builds may seem weak to beginner players who haven't mastered the art of flanking (frontside SB damage is laughable). Here is a message to someone who previously asked me about my build, or where he could find websites that teach you how to play Ranger SB.

I can't really help you with websites, as most guides are created by top PvP teams (none of which are using Rangers). Ranger is definitely one of the more difficult classes to play, which involves lots of dexterity if you're using shortbow. I'll give you my build, but it takes a VERY long time to learn, and usually teamwork. The idea of using the shortbow is to ALWAYS be flanking, if you're not flanking someone (1v1 perhaps), make sure to roll towards them or side strafe to get behind them or just simpley cripple them, get away with quick shot/lightning reflexes so they get tired of being kited to switch targets, and you switch your target yourself to someone more distracted. Remember, you only need about a 30 degree angle from their front to get the flanking bleed effect. The build I used is very squishy, but once you master it, you should rarely die due to your evasion potential. I'll list you my traits, utilities, runes, and sigils, but mastering it will be your own responsibility.

Build #1: Burst
http://gw2skills.net...GLMOYkwsAZEw AA
Traits:
3  8  
2  10
6  9   11
0
0

Weapons:
Shortbow/Sword+dagger

I use the sword + dagger for instances where I simply cannot create distance between myself and my target. This usually occurs during immobilizes. Simply switch to your secondary weapon set, hit 4 for an evasive poison attack, 3 for another evasive poison attack (dodging hits in the meanwhile), and finally once the immobilize clears, hit 2 once while facing your target to run away (another trick is to then turn away from them, clear your target with a click, and hit 2 again to dive forwards away from the attacker to create distance. You can then use your 5th skill if you think it's best to cripple them from afar until you have time to switch back to your bow. You can also opt to use  lightning reflexes during this time to clear out even faster if you want an easier way out.

Runes:
I use runes of the afflicted, as all your damage comes from bleeding/poison, and these runes boost that potential the most. However as you're learning this build, you may want to try runes with toughness on them as a safer but weaker route.

Sigils:
Agony on your SB
Venom on your dagger
Hydromancy on your sword

Amulet: Lucky for condition builds, Rabid amulet provides the perfect 3 stats for this style of play (power builds usually require glass cannon playstyles).

Utilities:
I equip myself with
Sharpening Stone (36 second cooldown with a 30 second duration. Apply this well before fights, so you can apply it again during the fight and get that much more damage out of it).
Quickening Zephyr (Your bread an butter. This is how you will do your burst damage which can drop anyone without quick reacting condition removal in an instant. More on this later)
Lightning Reflexes (Get used to using this. No player should ever go without a stun breaker, and luckily this one also creates distance to get away from those pesky warriors. It also adds vigor, so if you are ever attacked by a thief, roll, roll, and if you have to, quick shot and MAYBE even use lightning reflexes. By then he should be out of initiative and you'll have vigor for your endurance back when he attempts his HS spam again).

Heal: I know alot of you like to use healing spring, but the truth is, you move around so much with this build that you can't afford to use that skill, so I equip troll unguent.Your evasive skills should give you enough time for the HOTs to tick out, without the need for a quick spike heal.




Elite:
Entangle. With a shortbow you excel at flanking your enemy, and what's better than locking them in place so you can get behind? Self explanatory here, but remember: Your SB arrows pierce targets. Just the other day I got jumped by a warrior and thief in a 1v2. I was able to entangle them, and I noticed they were lined up with both their backs to me. I popped quickening zephyr, and pierced throw both of them, easily winning the 1v2 before they even had a chance to counter.

Pets:
I choose the black widow spider (Jungle Spider, Thank you Skolops for the recommendation) as my main pet because of the stun abilities. This pet applies a 2 second immobilize, which is great for getting the upper hand early in fights. You are a bursty class, so you shouldn't be in those long-term skirmishes. If you can't get your opportunistic openings, then move on to a better point. I use juvenile wolf for the fear as the secondary. When downed, switch to your wolf and use his f2 skill to fear potential downers, giving your teammates plenty of time to rez you, now that you have 2 forms of cc. If one person makes it back, hit f1 to send your wolf to attack him, causes him to pounce the target, giving a THIRD form of downed CC. Also, switch to your wolf in 1v1 fights, or after your Spider has used his stun skills during other fights. The pounce from the wolve usually leads to a quick death as you get a great opportunity to unload on your target. You can also replace your wolf with another spider for the extra stun, opening up more opportunities to unload with quickening zephyr from behind. This may actually be easier for beginner players, as you have an easier way to stun and unload than concussion shot offers.

Gameplay
Your goal with this build is to be a roamer. The reason for this, is that you excel at flanking players and you want to catch them off guard. Look for teammates at nodes who are in busy fights. If you have vent/skype/etc. try saying something like "Isms coming to graveyard from the south." Soon your point holder will learn to move to the north side of the node so the enemy has his back turned. You can then sneak behind him asking for a stun or using your concussion shot/pet stun to lock the target in place, hit quickening zephyr (make sure you have sharpening stone up too), and unload your auto attack from behind. Within seconds the play should have 20+ stacks of bleed. Immediately after always hit your poison volley to keep them from healing back up. Whenever needed, switch to sword dagger to finish off wounded opponents. Your '4,3,2' combo should apply enough poison to kill them off and then get you to safety.  From there they will usually run which means, as a SB Ranger, you just get to do even more damage. As a roamer, you need swiftness to move around. When moving to another zone and it is safe, hit your character tab and temporarily switch to a warhorn for the speed buff and quickly switch back to your previous weapon.  Whenever you are in a 1v1 fight, you hopefully should be evasive enough to take down most players, but usually you can tell if you're gonna take them down quick. Never be afraid to run away, even in fights you could win. You have enough escape tools to create distance while slowing them to end their chase quickly. You're best situated assassinating targets that are unaware of your coming.
If you're having trouble getting this burst to work, try unloading from behind on one of the dummies in the mysts, that should motivate you to perfect your combos :).

Build#2: Traps
http://gw2skills.net...L7XuvkftAZEwWAA
This is also a very cookie cutter build, but I feel it's a great entry point into the build listed above. This build is not for roaming, but for point/choke point control. I usually try and lay traps near walkways, bridges, doorways etc., as your cooldown is relatively short and you can throw your traps easily. This always you to put bleeds, burns, cripples, chills on your target at the beginning of your ambushes, disorienting them before the fight and giving you the clear upper hand.

3
2 8 11
3 9 11
0
0

Weapons:
Sb/axe+torch

Runes: I'd recommend something with condition/toughness, or if you're feeling really pro: Nightmare.

Sigils: Agony on SB
Hydromancy on Axe
Smoldering on Torch

Amulet: Rabid of course!

Utilities: I used spike trap for the initial crippling effect, flame trap for the damage it brings, and then chill for the extra cripple once the enemy gets close (and the added benefit of stalling the cooldowns on their opening abilities).

Heal: I know alot of you like to use healing spring, but the truth is, you move around so much with this build that you can't afford to use that skill, so I equip troll unguent.Your evasive skills should give you enough time for the HOTs to tick out, without the need for a quick spike heal.


Gameplay: This one is a little more situation on controlling choke points or entry ways. This build works EXTREMELY well on Battle of Kyhlo. Start by finding an entrance that you know is used alot (entrance to mansion/windmill, or even stairs outside of clocktower). Throw your traps all down on that spot, with your chill trap closer towards yourself (so once they reach you and want to use skills, the recharge time affects them). The idea is to post up on their flank, so once they are walking up the stairs/doorway/etc., you already have the positioning to apply bleeds. I give the torch to your offhand so you can easily hit your 4 button for the initial burning burst (very high), you can drop your '5' for the fire field (since you're allowed to stand still with this build while they are approaching), your 3 for the cripple to extend their pursuit, (2 if you think it will hit them), and then switch to shortbow to finish them off. Of course this build rarely ever works as perfectly as the scenario mentioned above. But usually the traps cause them to burn their condition removals early, or be weak enough that by the time they reach you, you still have your quick shot/rolls to create distance and make it a lost cause for the enemy player. This build is much more about strategy than dexterity as the one listed above, but I find it's a good starting point in order to learn how to properly flank and escape targets as a SB ranger. The only problem with this build is that it is a 'niche' build, being that it excels in certain situations, while others it's just meh. This is why I never run this build in tournaments, but in random pugs (or with my main team in free tournaments for fun, which we almost never lose anyway(except that damn Team Paradigm subgroup. That was just mean...).

Video:

I'll post videos of some gameplay examples as soon as I can get my team to tourney again. They're all upset about the billion tourney chests that we've yet to receive from bugs. If I seemed to make any mistakes in the guide, feel free to let me know and I'll change them. Also, feel free to ask any questions in-game. My Ranger's name is Xsel, or you can reach me on my main (Ex Sel, Isms, or X Isms X). Update 2: I haven't really gotten to play my Ranger in a few days, as I've moved towards a guardian/ele role with my tourny team. If I get a chance to record some of the smaller things, like the sword/dagger evasive-escape combo, I'll make sure to at least find a way to get that posted up as an example.

Edited by Isms, 09 September 2012 - 07:25 AM.


#2 Dashel

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 04:40 PM

Thanks for this.

One thing about the pets, although I like the Wolf fear I would think one or even two spiders would be a great choice for this build.  I like to use them with Shortbow for the tons of immobilizes they do.  Both the Black Widow and the Jungle Spider have a 900 range immobilize on F2 *in addition* to the 20 second CD standard attack "Entangling Web".  Plus poison which is great to have obviously for the heal but also diversity of conditions on the target.

Immobilize seems to be king for CC when talking Shortbow. 2 Spiders and Entangle is a lot of immob.

#3 Skolops

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 04:51 PM

Frontside shortbow damage is by no means laughable... it's better than frontside Longbow, even when you throw in Rapid Fire!

Edited by Skolops, 06 September 2012 - 04:51 PM.


#4 Isms

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 06:34 PM

View PostSkolops, on 06 September 2012 - 04:51 PM, said:

Frontside shortbow damage is by no means laughable... it's better than frontside Longbow, even when you throw in Rapid Fire!

Well perhaps if for some reason you have power in your build, which you shouldn't. If you're attacking someone frontside, you are wasting your time.

View PostDashel, on 06 September 2012 - 04:40 PM, said:

Thanks for this.

One thing about the pets, although I like the Wolf fear I would think one or even two spiders would be a great choice for this build.  I like to use them with Shortbow for the tons of immobilizes they do.  Both the Black Widow and the Jungle Spider have a 900 range immobilize on F2 *in addition* to the 20 second CD standard attack "Entangling Web".  Plus poison which is great to have obviously for the heal but also diversity of conditions on the target.

Immobilize seems to be king for CC when talking Shortbow. 2 Spiders and Entangle is a lot of immob.

Yup, it's really about personal preference. I can definitely back up the 2 spider build though, as the stuns are automatic kills half the time; however, I prefer the wolf for the sake of rezzing, which seems to be the most important thing in tournament play. I also play an engineer as main that focuses on rezzing, so I'm a bit biased.

Edited by Isms, 06 September 2012 - 06:39 PM.


#5 meloqq

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 07:47 PM

blue moa is giving 3sec protection for me, just tested.

Also pardon my noobish question: whats the fuz with front or flanking dmg? your build dont run flanking trait. Or its just proffesion thingy? ops... didnt read the tooltip right lol

question 2: does sigils on second set of wepons, works all the time?

Edited by meloqq, 06 September 2012 - 08:17 PM.


#6 Agon

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 08:12 PM

Flanking causes the standard attack to apply bleed to the enemy and since he runs a condition spec, bleed is king ;)

#7 Skolops

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 08:53 PM

View PostIsms, on 06 September 2012 - 06:34 PM, said:

Well perhaps if for some reason you have power in your build, which you shouldn't. If you're attacking someone frontside, you are wasting your time.

if you're running a condition build, yes, you are wasting your time attacking from the front.  That wasn't really what I was thinking of.

My point is this: regardless of how much power you have (because it scales), shortbow damage is always better than longbow damage even from the front.  While shortbow base (before bleeds) damage is slightly less than half of max range longbow damage, the rate of fire results in your getting off more than 2 shortbow shots per longbow shot.  Combine this with the fact that against all but the worst of players its impossible to stay at max longbow range and you have a clear decision for archery based power builds: the shortbow.  You then have bleeds on top of this, and even though they're only in the 50 - 60 per tick range and you may not be focused on flanking them, they're still going to happen naturally and they're still going to bring that damage up from the longbow even more in a power build.  

Rapid Fire brings the longbow much closer, but ultimately it doesn't surpass things.  Try a simple test on the target dummies: get an online stopwatch going and track time to kill in front for longbow and shortbow with any given amount of power.  The shortbow doing nothing but autoattack will have a time to kill which is - depending on the crits - plus or minus one second from the longbow using the vulnerability shot and rapid shots.  The higher your crit rating is, the better the shortbow gets because it has somewhere between 2 and 3 times as many attacks per any given time period and so will have more crits in the mix.

#8 MileZero

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 10:02 PM

I`m using a trap/condition build very similar to that one, is the best way to deal with mesmers in 1vs1 and in team fights it can do a lot of damage.

#9 Nyth

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 10:05 PM

Nice guide. Would really help if you would add some footage in the near future :)

Might be nice, for overall readability for the guide to see what your build exactly is in a build editor, so they can get a quick overview of it.
I'll pass the two links as I put them in there myself, to see what the stats were like and play around with some things. I assume you used healing spring in both builds.

Burst build
http://gw2skills.net...GLMOYkwsGYEw AA

Trap build
http://gw2skills.net...JbTumkNtGYEwWAA
(chose Rune of the Undead but as mentioned you can swap them)

----

What's your view on Keen Edge though (nr 3 trait in skirmishing). The bleed on crit looks like it "fits" your build; but it's a 1 second bleed. That translates to roughly 130 extra damage on a crit or 70 extra damage per shot with a 50% crit rate which is hardly even noticeable.
I mean, people keep thinking it's great as it adds "more bleeds" but when you look at the raw damage; I still can't see why people keep investing in this over something like 5 seconds of vigor every 15-20 seconds; or critting giving your pet might (which probably even translates to more damage >.>)

EDIT: Also I often find it hard to justify NOT taking 5 points in beastmastery. The 2 second quickness is so insanely good and versatile (stomping / rezzing / quick burst) it's simply an shortened QZ on a 20 second cooldown, without the not being able to heal downside.
I would kinda suggest that dropping 10 points in MM and picking up both 5 points in BM and maybe grab the 25 pointer in skirmishing (Opening Strike sucks and as you mentioned you should always aim to flank, might as well pick up that 10% extra dmg).
In the trap build it's harder to take away 5 points without breaking an important part of the build, but I'd still say that the quickness are 5 points hard to pass up.

Edited by Nyth, 07 September 2012 - 12:01 AM.


#10 Isms

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 01:30 AM

View PostNyth, on 06 September 2012 - 10:05 PM, said:

Nice guide. Would really help if you would add some footage in the near future :)

Might be nice, for overall readability for the guide to see what your build exactly is in a build editor, so they can get a quick overview of it.
I'll pass the two links as I put them in there myself, to see what the stats were like and play around with some things. I assume you used healing spring in both builds.

Burst build
http://gw2skills.net...GLMOYkwsGYEw AA

Trap build
http://gw2skills.net...JbTumkNtGYEwWAA
(chose Rune of the Undead but as mentioned you can swap them)

----

What's your view on Keen Edge though (nr 3 trait in skirmishing). The bleed on crit looks like it "fits" your build; but it's a 1 second bleed. That translates to roughly 130 extra damage on a crit or 70 extra damage per shot with a 50% crit rate which is hardly even noticeable.
I mean, people keep thinking it's great as it adds "more bleeds" but when you look at the raw damage; I still can't see why people keep investing in this over something like 5 seconds of vigor every 15-20 seconds; or critting giving your pet might (which probably even translates to more damage >.>)

EDIT: Also I often find it hard to justify NOT taking 5 points in beastmastery. The 2 second quickness is so insanely good and versatile (stomping / rezzing / quick burst) it's simply an shortened QZ on a 20 second cooldown, without the not being able to heal downside.
I would kinda suggest that dropping 10 points in MM and picking up both 5 points in BM and maybe grab the 25 pointer in skirmishing (Opening Strike sucks and as you mentioned you should always aim to flank, might as well pick up that 10% extra dmg).
In the trap build it's harder to take away 5 points without breaking an important part of the build, but I'd still say that the quickness are 5 points hard to pass up.

Well thank you very much. I completely forgot to make it in the build editor haha. I actually use Troll Unguent instead, as you should always be on the move, and healing spring just doesn't help for that. Adding the build editors with the fix now.

As for your questions: You're totally right about keen arrow. It's a trait that would be useless with all other weapons except shortbow, but even with testing, the damage difference is not that significant. I would totally ignore it. As for the quickness form 5 in BM, that's up to you. If you have designated stompers on your team, you don't have to worry about it for that, and I personally don't change pets unless I need to. I personally couldn't go without the piercing arrows, as it's undeniably valuable paired with entangled. When you have more than one enemy rooted in the same place, it's easy to position yourself to burn them both down quickly.

As for footage, I never planned on making a guide in the first place. I was responding to someone I met in game and figured, "hey, i'll just keep going and post this up for all the other people who've asked me." I'm having trouble getting my team to come back and do tournaments since they are bugged, but as soon as I get in one, i'll record it (if they let me not play my engi haha). I'd record in sPvP, but this is not where this build excels (and honestly, i don't even think i'm that great in the 8v8 zerg-fest haha. But I work damn well in a tourny).

Edited by Isms, 07 September 2012 - 03:30 AM.


#11 meloqq

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 05:31 AM

so what about that protection from blue moa, tootip says 10sec, u said 12, i see 4 when im using it.

#12 Kuro1n

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 10:05 AM

Went in here thinking I'd get some new ideas, seems I didn't go wrong with my build as I have picked everything same as you. :P

#13 Isms

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 06:43 PM

View Postmeloqq, on 07 September 2012 - 05:31 AM, said:

so what about that protection from blue moa, tootip says 10sec, u said 12, i see 4 when im using it.

You know, this is a total fail on my part. It was a typo originally, but i meant to type 10. And you're right, it is 4 seconds. I probably should have tested this, as I just took it's word for it and didn't pay attention to it. I'd definitely prefer the spider in that sense.

#14 Zinn

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 07:11 PM

Picked up Ranger last night, tried your build.  I like it.  It was incredibly easy to learn.  The only thing that took a few tries to get right was the sword escape.

#15 Viryn

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 07:16 PM

I've been playing with LB a lot but I recently made the switch to SB and I love it.  The auto attacks are so frakin' fast and building up bleeds never gets old.

#16 Skolops

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 08:18 PM

I've been going back and forth between a power shortbow build and a condition shortbow build.  I have one I'm quite fond of in that it has plenty of HP - what I found lacking in other builds - while still having nearly max condition damage:  

http://gw2skills.net...JbTumkNtqYUxuCA

Unfortunately, I just can't seem to consistently stack up bleeds on my targets.  Even though in testing on the golems what counts as flanking is very, very generous, when I am in a PvP match I'm not often getting many more than 7 or 8 stacks if even that on my targets. Any tips?

#17 Isms

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 09:04 PM

View PostSkolops, on 07 September 2012 - 08:18 PM, said:

I've been going back and forth between a power shortbow build and a condition shortbow build.  I have one I'm quite fond of in that it has plenty of HP - what I found lacking in other builds - while still having nearly max condition damage:  

http://gw2skills.net...JbTumkNtqYUxuCA

Unfortunately, I just can't seem to consistently stack up bleeds on my targets.  Even though in testing on the golems what counts as flanking is very, very generous, when I am in a PvP match I'm not often getting many more than 7 or 8 stacks if even that on my targets. Any tips?

The best tip I can give you is to not get frustrated. This game is more about teamwork than anything else. I haven't even posted a video yet because my team has been to busy to tourny lately, and in 8v8 I don't even feel that I do well enough to record. There is simply too much chaos in 8v8 random play. If you learn to work as a team, you should have no trouble catching others offguard. For now, I'd recommend trying to learn how to roam and join in fights later instead of earlier. Bring a warhorn in your inventory so you can dash between control points quicker, and try to enter the fights unnoticed.

#18 glock9s

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Posted 08 September 2012 - 06:06 AM

Instead of dagger why not warhorn for buff and burst purposes, in the first build, Just a thought


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#19 wafflebot

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Posted 08 September 2012 - 09:21 AM

I think because dagger give evasion - and warhorn is pretty much only popped for quickness  
and the condition ranger isn't trying to burst.

#20 Shadez

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Posted 08 September 2012 - 10:58 AM

Just curious- are you a pro player or something? Like why are people asking you for your build?

#21 Isms

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Posted 08 September 2012 - 11:49 PM

View PostShadez, on 08 September 2012 - 10:58 AM, said:

Just curious- are you a pro player or something? Like why are people asking you for your build?

I'm not a pro player at all, and I don't claim to be. I've had people asking my build due to just experiences playing against me. I'm actually not even a Ranger main, but regardless, I hope that my guide or tips can provide useful information to players looking for help.

View Postglock9s, on 08 September 2012 - 06:06 AM, said:

Instead of dagger why not warhorn for buff and burst purposes, in the first build, Just a thought


-Glocknines [blackgate]

I always carry a warhorn in my inventory and pop it out for a quick swiftness buff when roaming between points. The cooldown is very long so you only need to blow it once when roaming between two locations (as well as the beginning).

#22 JROH

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 01:32 AM

Although I'm running different utility skills, I tried this setup(burst) with maybe a single different trait than you (I don't think I run it with any survival utilities at this current moment), and it dominates. Provided there's a slight learning curve with the sword/dagger, the overall build is extremely fun and has lot's of survival, and damage. I'm currently running it with Spike Trap, Protect Me, and Signet of the Wild, and I'd have to say that at least for my playstyle it performs above and beyond expectations for the way I play (emphasis on point defense and roaming). Protect me is a godsend in those crucial moments, if you don't mind sacrificing your pet.

I love how evasive the sword/dagger set is. I only ever played around with it before in pve, and I had auto attack on then, so my experience with it then wasn't as fantastic as using it seems to be now. Thanks for this thread, it finally helped me decide on my build.

#23 Icycold

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 04:41 AM

How do you think Rangers fare in 1v1 pvp combat? With a black widow (makes a difference).

#24 Dahk

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 05:23 AM

Hmm...some of the stuff in the first build doesn't add up to me, particularly since you're speaking about the value of flanking.  5 more points into Skirmishing would up your damage by 10% while flanking, which is pretty huge.  If you switched your runes to 'of the Thief,' you'd get another extra 10%.

#25 Skolops

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 06:36 AM

View PostIcycold, on 09 September 2012 - 04:41 AM, said:

How do you think Rangers fare in 1v1 pvp combat? With a black widow (makes a difference).

Don't use the Black Widow. Use the Jungle Spider: it's exactly the same in every way except that it has about twice the HP.

View PostJROH, on 09 September 2012 - 01:32 AM, said:

Although I'm running different utility skills, I tried this setup(burst) with maybe a single different trait than you (I don't think I run it with any survival utilities at this current moment), and it dominates. Provided there's a slight learning curve with the sword/dagger, the overall build is extremely fun and has lot's of survival, and damage. I'm currently running it with Spike Trap, Protect Me, and Signet of the Wild, and I'd have to say that at least for my playstyle it performs above and beyond expectations for the way I play (emphasis on point defense and roaming). Protect me is a godsend in those crucial moments, if you don't mind sacrificing your pet.

I love how evasive the sword/dagger set is. I only ever played around with it before in pve, and I had auto attack on then, so my experience with it then wasn't as fantastic as using it seems to be now. Thanks for this thread, it finally helped me decide on my build.

Are you saying that turning off autoattack helped you with the Sword?  I've tried it a few times to try to manage immobilizes, but I just hate the way I feel completely out of control once I switch to it.

#26 Isms

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 07:14 AM

View PostDahk, on 09 September 2012 - 05:23 AM, said:

Hmm...some of the stuff in the first build doesn't add up to me, particularly since you're speaking about the value of flanking.  5 more points into Skirmishing would up your damage by 10% while flanking, which is pretty huge.  If you switched your runes to 'of the Thief,' you'd get another extra 10%.

I understand, that 5 more points in Skirmishing taunts me every time I look at this build (The flanking damage buff only applies to your physical damage which isn't very useful). But honestly, what would you drop for it? If you don't have a reliable condition removal, you're severely hindering yourself; if your arrows don't pierce targets, your limiting your group dps abilities (this one is still up for debate according to your play style, teams you face, etc.); if you drop quick draw, you're hindering your evasive abilities (as well as the obvious other utilities from poison, daze, cripple).

As far as the thief runes go, precision isn't a trait that you need. The extra bleed from "Sharpened Edges" on crit is extremely low, and isn't worth investing into precision for alone. Thief runes also do not effect your condition damage, as these runes are made for power builds, which this is not. I chose afflicted because almost all of our damage comes from bleeding and poison, and the 15% increase in duration is an obvious choice.

Edited by Isms, 10 September 2012 - 10:06 AM.


#27 Isms

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 07:27 AM

View PostJROH, on 09 September 2012 - 01:32 AM, said:

Although I'm running different utility skills, I tried this setup(burst) with maybe a single different trait than you (I don't think I run it with any survival utilities at this current moment), and it dominates. Provided there's a slight learning curve with the sword/dagger, the overall build is extremely fun and has lot's of survival, and damage. I'm currently running it with Spike Trap, Protect Me, and Signet of the Wild, and I'd have to say that at least for my playstyle it performs above and beyond expectations for the way I play (emphasis on point defense and roaming). Protect me is a godsend in those crucial moments, if you don't mind sacrificing your pet.

I love how evasive the sword/dagger set is. I only ever played around with it before in pve, and I had auto attack on then, so my experience with it then wasn't as fantastic as using it seems to be now. Thanks for this thread, it finally helped me decide on my build.

Glad to see everything is working out for you! This guide isn't as much about a specific build, as it is here to promote a general playstyle. I'm glad to see that you've taken the build in a new direction and made it your own! I can definitely promote your use of "Protect Me." In fact, I almost recommend new players try using it instead of sharpening stone at the beginning in order to create some room for error.

Edited by Isms, 09 September 2012 - 07:28 AM.


#28 JROH

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 08:11 AM

View PostSkolops, on 09 September 2012 - 06:36 AM, said:

Don't use the Black Widow. Use the Jungle Spider: it's exactly the same in every way except that it has about twice the HP.



Are you saying that turning off autoattack helped you with the Sword?  I've tried it a few times to try to manage immobilizes, but I just hate the way I feel completely out of control once I switch to it.

Yes it definitely helped me. I was able to stop attacking when I wanted. The only thing I find problematic is the build in lunge the attacks on the sword have. Sometimes it inadvertently lands me in enemy fields when I don't want to be. I liked it more for the built in evasive skills it has that can get you out of that burst that thieves and warriors carry. It helps you to force them to blow their cooldowns a lot of times, and a lot of players are running 1 trick pony builds.

View PostIsms, on 09 September 2012 - 07:27 AM, said:

Glad to see everything is working out for you! This guide isn't as much about a specific build, as it is here to promote a general playstyle. I'm glad to see that you've taken the build in a new direction and made it your own! I can definitely promote your use of "Protect Me." In fact, I almost recommend new players try using it instead of sharpening stone at the beginning in order to create some room for error.

I just like protect me because we have nothing that eats immobilizes as rangers, so used at the right time, you can make a warrior blow his frenzy, or thief, etc, and come out alive. I found that when I was roaming, forcing people to blow their burst potential let me come out on top numerous times. It more so helps against particularly warriors because of the sheer amount of immobilize they carry sometimes, and the potentially short recharge their immobilizes can have. I'm going to say that it probably has a more beneficial use in spvp though, then in tpvp when teams are more organized. Generally to me it would seem just like a wasted utility slot, cuz an organized team can just switch pressure to another person then switch it back on cue if they are effectively calling and following targets.

#29 Dashel

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 02:49 PM

View PostSkolops, on 07 September 2012 - 08:18 PM, said:



Unfortunately, I just can't seem to consistently stack up bleeds on my targets.  Even though in testing on the golems what counts as flanking is very, very generous, when I am in a PvP match I'm not often getting many more than 7 or 8 stacks if even that on my targets. Any tips?

Pick your spots to burst them.  In my own case I use the Quickness on pet swap often and also have Quickening Zephyr as a utility.  When your pet either imobilizes or knocks them down, get in flanking position and hit QZ or do a pet swap.  As they come out of it hit them with the shortbow 5 stun/daze.

#30 KCChiefsDude

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 03:37 PM

nice guide, I've been lurking these forums trying to come up with a good sPvP strategy for my Ranger.  I've tried a lot of different things, but short bow + sword/dagger/warhorn or torch is what I like the most.





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