Hello everyone, this is a build I recently created with a goal of supporting in dungeons in mind. I use the supporting ability of Guadians and Warriors (shouts) as benchmarks to judge the overall strength and usefulness of the build. Of course, the goal is to bring a unique twist to the supporting role as a Elementalist - to do something the other classes simply cannot do.
This build was created to fill an extremely useful role within dungeon groups. Although the "support" role can often be skipped in most dungeon runs, a strong support can allow a group to get through a dungeon with less deaths, faster clear-times, and ultimately more profit from dungeons.
Looking at the the overall "support" role, we can divide the role into 3 categories: Healing, Defense, Offense. Healing is the main goal of this support build, a strong support can heal multiple allies effectively - aiding the survival of allies by giving another source of health gain outside of personal healing skills. Defense can be provided by a support in many different ways, it can vary from preventing enemies from hitting allies to preventing damage on an ally - overall, the idea is the prevention of damage instead of healing after damage being done. A support's goal to aid allies, this often includes increasing the damage output of allies - supports should look for ways to either buff his/her allies or debuff of the enemies in order to kill them faster.
In attempts to abuse the Elementalist's versatility, we will look for ways to fulfill each category. Although an Elementalist can do something in each aspect, a priority should be set on which aspect is more importantly - for this build the priority will be the following (from highest priority to lowest): healing, offensive support, defensive support.
As an Elementalist attempting to fill the support role, a unique factor should be found in order to give special edge to a support Elementalist over the other classes as support. This edge should allow the build to stand out above others and provide a powerful boost to a team that may not be possible without the Elementalist.
Weapon and Utility Skills:
In this build, a versatile support weapon set is required in order to fulfill our goal. Utilities should be seen as changeable whenever needed but a rough outline for the utility skills is needed.
Scepter is chosen for mainhand because of the strong utility available to it.
- In fire, the skills contains two blast finishers with, Dragon's Tooth and Phoenix, in order to complete combos - the main method of offensive support.
- In water, there once again is another option in offensive support with the vulnerability from Shatterstone but more importantly there is a powerful ranged AoE heal from Water Trident.
- In air, Blinding Flash helps our defensive support role with the blind preventing enemies from hitting.
- In earth, another blind is found with Dust Devil, this time it is a line AoE blind.
A dagger is in the offhand because of its superior synergy and utility when used with scepter mainhand.
- In fire, Ring of Fire is used as a combo field along with the many combo blast finisher, together they can provide 10+ stacks of might if the combo is properly executed.
- In water, there is Frost Armor which, although we will not be invested in auras, can be very helpful to the Elementalist for defense - look to this skill when being chased by monsters such as when the team is skipping monsters. Cleansing Wave is the second weapon based heal, not only does it heal in an area, it also cures a condition - take note of this skill as its effects provide the main healing potential in this build.
- In air, Ride The Lightning provides a positional utility which can be used to shift from defensive support position to offensive support position. Updraft also provides a strong knockdown/knockback - although it will likely be blocked by most dungeon bosses, a hard interrupt skill is available in this build if needed.
- In earth, both Earthquake and Churning Earth are blast finishers, these two skills are part of the offensive support combo to provide many stacks of might quickly. It should be noted that Churning Earth's blast finisher takes place at the start of the channeling, the whole spell does not need to be cast in order to get the desired effect.
Healing skills, utility, and elite skills are largely changeable, the build shown above is an example of a possible combination for a sylvari Elementalist. When choosing utilities skills, determining what is needed on the bar is important; in this build we want: bonus party healing, bonus offensive support, bonus defensive support, and self-defense. It is unlikely that all of these aspects can be fulfilled at once but the choice of which to fulfill is largely based on self-preference and the specific dungeon.
For a healing skill there is a choice of:
- Ether Renewal - a low cooldown strong self heal; take this if runes that run off of the usage of healing skills is equipped.
- Signet of Restoration - consistent self healing because of constant spell usage; take this if the Elementalist cannot effectively sustain himself or herself.
- Healing Seed - a sylvari racial healing skill that not only heals the caster but gives the boon Regeneration to those around the summon; extremely useful in this build because of the regeneration, this skill is highly recommonded if available.
- Arcane Wave - highly commended as it works very will into the offensive support combo as another blast finisher.
- Conjure Lightning Hammer - although possibly dangerous to stay in melee position, the crowd control potential (knockback or dazing leap combo). It can also provide a blast finisher every 3 auto attack.
- Battle Roar - this skill can be used after the offensive boon combo to give a significant boost in overall damage for the team
- Conjure Frost Bow - this skill's bonus in Healing Power may be worth using in times where healing is required, equipping the bow then dodging for a heal can be an effective way to use this. One should also note the ice ability for the bow, it is a strong disable available to the Elementalist.
- Glyph of Elemental Power - if this is casted in air attunement can allow the Elementalist to maintain weakness on a target for the entire duration of this spell. Although the spell says otherwise, after casted the effect remains (fire spells can trigger the weakness if this spell was casted in air).
- Glyph of Renewal - although the cast time is high, there are situations where this spell can resurrect downed allies. It is recommended that this is used with a strong self defense spell to allow the Elementalist to safely cast.
- Glyph of Storms - the earth version of this spell can provide a recurring AoE spell that applies blind every tick. This is very useful for rooms with many additional mobs.
- Armor of Earth - the protection and stability provided by this skill allows the Elementalist to survive certain difficult encounters that involve heavy damage and/or forced movement.
- Lightning Flash - an experienced user can use this skill to get out of most situation. It is an instant cast to teleport anywhere. This can be used to get out of sticky situations or quickly into a new, more favorable position.
- Mist Form - the ultimate self-defense skill, useful in almost all dungeons to mitigate heavy damage while giving the Elementalist freedom of movement. There are two unique properties of this skill that should be noted: even while in Mist Form, utility skills can be used and this skill can be used mid-resurrection to protect the Elementalist while saving an ally. This skill is almost a staple.
- Glyph of Elementals - the elite Elementals summoned through this skill provide a strong companion that can fit many situations. Fire can provide damage, water can provide an ice field and healing, air can provide reliable ranged damage, and earth can provide another body for enemies to hit.
- Summon D-Series Golem - an extra NPC on the field can allow monster dps to be more spread out and easier to manage
- Summon Druid Spirit - this summon can be extremely useful in aiding damage and support. The regeneration and the condition removal can be useful at times.
- Take Root - the momentary invulnerability from this skill makes it a useful survivability skill. The summoned turrets are also capable of pulling monster aggro to them immediately.
Although the utilities in this build is largely left to the player to decide what they want, the traits are specifically designed to fulfill the role desired.
Air Magic (10):
The 100 bonus precision from this trait line helps with what this build does in order to maximize Healing Power.
- Zephyr's Speed (Minor): The slight movement speed never hurt anyone, it allows for the Elementalist to move slightly faster which can be useful in times where the team is skipping monsters.
- Soothing Winds (Major): This choice of a major trait and largely the 10 point investment into the Air Magic line is based off of a very specific type of gear this build works with - more on this in the gear section.
The bonus of 300 Vitality and Healing Power makes this trait line a must to max.
- Soothing Mist (Minor): Just a slight bit of self-healing, it is a noticeable amount due to Healing Power.
- Aquamancer's Alacrity (Major): Because this build's main support style is through healing, making spells in the water attunement recharge quicker is a nice bonus.
- Healing Ripple (Minor): The passive healing given to allies while attuned to Water gives strong consistent health regeneration because of the large Healing Power this build has.
- Cleansing Wave (Major): This immediate condition removal is a method of removing many conditions from allies quickly and effectively - some conditions are very deadly and can be detrimental if not removed quickly.
- Bountiful Power (Minor): Although this build does not focus on damage output, this slight bonus can help in some situations where extra damage is required.
- Cleansing Water (Major): Regeneration is an easily applied boon, this trait allows the build to abuse this factor to continually remove all conditions from allies.
Both the bonus stats from this trait line can be useful for any Elementalist. By increasing the length of boons, boons like regeneration can be much stronger. By allowing the Elementalist to swtich through elements quicker, more combos and switches in a certain area of support can be done in a shorter amount of time.
- Arcane Fury (Minor): The fury can be useful in certain situations, specifically in attempting to use sigils based off of critical hits - this bonus is a welcomed one.
- Elemental Attunement (Major): This skill allows us to provide useful boons even with normal and common actions of an Elementalist.
- Lingering Elements (Minor): This trait is extremely useful, especially because of the passive bonuses in water - this allows for more leeway in terms of switching between elements while not losing important bonuses from a specific element.
- Vigorous Scepter (Major): As dodging is one of the ways this build produces the spells required to fulfill its role, allowing for more dodges is extremely important.
- Arcane Precision (Minor): Because this build includes precision as one of its valued stats, this skill can be useful - it should be noted that the chance of this passive working is low (about 7.5% chance on crit).
- Evasive Arcana (Major): This is the keystone to this build - almost all of the spells that occur after a dodge can be used very effectively. For example, Cleansing Wave gives its full healing potential with one dodge.
This build focuses on a very specific set of stats to get the most Healing Power possible whilst being able to stay alive for as long as possible.
The focus of stats are as follows:
- Healing Power (Main)
- Precision (Secondary)
- Vitality (Secondary)
This set of unique stats can be obtained through a few methods, please note that this set of stats cannot be found on exotic accessories and jewels. For those slots, either use Sapphires or keep the rare set.
- Magi's- accessory
- Durmand Priory Armor
- Temple Karma Armor
- Dungeon (AC, TA, Arah) Weapon and Armor
Sigil of Water and Sigil of Energy are used with this build. The Sigil of Water can provide bonus healing on critical hits which are steadily available with the precision. The Sigil of Energy can be triggered with an element swap - which allows for more consistent dodge-rolling to trigger more spells.
Runes can be one of two choices: Rune of the Water or Rune of the Monk. Water provides bonus healing on the use of healing skill and the Monk gives Aegis on elite use, which can be useful if the elite chosen is a quick survival skill.
A good way to organize skills and goals while playing this build is by looking at what of three aspects of the support role and transitioning between each smoothly.
Defensive Support: This aspect is fulfilled through the usage of the air and earth attunement. For this build, this aspect will require the player to focus on staying in air form for blindness and possible weakness. The focus here is to limit the monster's ability to deal damage through consistent blind. Blind can be applied through the skill usage or dodging while in air, a line aoe blind is also available in earth but it pulls the player out of air form (when leaving air form, think about transitioning into another aspect of support. This defensive support aspect should be focused on if the team is just beginning to fight a new set of monsters or largely undamaged.
Healing: This whole aspect uses the water attunement. Even by simply staying in the water form consistent healing due to the traits. The healing of this build comes in two ways, steady healing and spike healing, all of which are AoE. Steady healing will be provided slowly when the player is in water attunement. Spike AoE healing is done through three main abilities. Water Trident, Cleansing Wave, and dodge Cleansing Wave - all of these skills can be used in any order when needed. If only a small amount of healing is ever needed, switching into water then quickly out into another attunement can a small burst of healing. This aspect of support can easily be transitioned into and out as it is only in the Water Attunement.
Offensive Support: This aspect is only a chain of spells that provides a large amount of might in a short time. This combo begins in any element other than fire and earth. The combo is as follows:
- Swap into Fire Attunement (F1) [1 Might]
- Ring of Fire (4)
- Dragon's Tooth (2) [3 Might]
- Phoenix (3) [3 Might]
- Swap into Earth Attunement (F4)
- Earthquake (4) [3 Might]
- Churning Earth (5) [3 Might]
- Arcane Wave (if equipped) [3 Might]
Overall, a good player should be moving in between the elements smoothly in order to fulfill each aspect of the support role depending on situation and what the team currently needs.
Thank you for reading this build analysis/sharing - please give any feedback that you may have, I appreciate all of it.
Edited by evilandrex, 28 November 2012 - 10:41 PM.