Posted 05 December 2012 - 05:41 AM
Level 27 fractal Guardian here.
TL;DR of below: Every skill has a time and place. Make sure your traits have a decent enough of diversity to be effective in a majority of situations (so you can change them and on the fly). Consecrations have a big place in this dungeon. Weapon choice matters. Don't sit in the back and cower.
Most of what is said above is true, but I hope I can contribute a bigger picture to how to get a decent fractal build going, and not just toward PvE in general
One of the biggest things to note is changing skills and retraiting as you move along the fractals (essentially unimportant in levels 1-10). For example, you may bring Wall of Reflection, Shield of Absorption (with 30 sec duration), and Stand Your Ground! for the beginning of the Uncategorized fractal (post level 10) to defend against the harpies who have an AoE ranged KD. Upon reaching the boss Old Tom, however, you should swap Wall of Reflection (because it is useless aside from condition removal which can be granted from almost every other guardian skill) for another skill, such as Sanctuary (more protection against bosses attack), or a shout.This, of course comes from experience, so learn your fractals =p
This of course varies by build, and as I personally run 0-0-30-20-20, I have room for flexibility as far as that goes, i.e. traiting for a longer duration Shield of Absorption+ longer consecrations, or maybe condition removal/meditation cooldown. Also dual symbol traiting/shout mastery + empowering might)
There are some skills which I personally find become obsolete in the later fractals, but some I find are key:
-A Stun Breaker (already mentioned): Save Yourselves vs. Judge's Intervention. Judge's Intervention is neat, Save Yourselves is practical. Save yourself (literally) the trouble, as it also grants increased DPS plus health regeneration/protection.
-Projectile reflection/absoprtion (earlier I mentioned changing your skills as you move along, this is one of those situational things, there are some points in a fractal where projectiles are simply non-existent, and therefore these skills should be quickly reslotted, with anything even semi-useful, shouts provide global utility, meditations are good for survival)
-Heals: Shelter vs. Signet of Resolve. Through experience, I personally prefer Shelter, but it's personal preference here. I find if you don't have the agony resistance necessary for a fight, bring Signet of Resolve, as the bigger heal is more likely to save you. For all other fights though, Shelter is IMO better for a majority of the situations I find myself/party in, especially when your dodge bar is low, or you've been caught in the wrong place, at the wrong time.
-Elite Choice: Renewed Focus/Racial elite summon. I understand your desire to run a support build, but you get far more on-time utility than compared to the Tomes. Racial elite summons are good for dps and to eat damage (obsolete in later fractals because they can't eat Agony, unfortunately). Most boss fights aren't really built well for the tomes (what i mean is, fights where you sit still and dps until the boss dies with a dodge every 20 seconds in the fight), and are usually "die unless you dodge/block the attack(s)" (the only ones that comes to mind where tomes are useful are maybe the two in the Swamp Fractals).
-Weapon Choice: Swap these. All the time. I don't mean just click/press your swap button. I mean, literally go to your inventory and change your weapons. Use Greatsword when __________. Use Hammer when __________. Use Staff when __________. Use Scepter/Shield when ______________. Use Scepter/Focus when ____________.
You get the idea.
You don't have to put too much thought into it. Really. I promise.
Scepter dps > Staff Dps. Staff utility > scepter utility, but that's not really fair. Scepter/Shield/focus provide far more effective utility IMO than the AoE heal Staff provides. I'll breakdown a few of the fractals' final boss fights for you, so maybe you can get an understanding of how much skill choice is important and varying.
-Uncategorized Fractal: Raving Asura and his army of 4 Cat Golems.
-Raving Asura has a 3-projectile attack which he uses about every 10 seconds or so. Each projectile inflicts agony. (I run Wall of Reflection, Shield of Absorption, and Sanctuary to counteract this, granting 50 seconds of protection versus Agony). You can dodge these projectiles. This boss cannot be killed, and is not part of the objective of winning.
-The Cat Golems each individually activate after the death of another (you face one at a time), and are what you have to kill in order to defeat the fractal. Upon the defeat of all 4, all 4 will revive and you will face all 4 at once. Greatsword does wonders here, as the golems have no anti-CC (Defiant) and you can pull them all in at once for quick kill, this helps especially when your party members are incapable of dodging agony projectiles from the main boss when you run out of projectile reflection/absorption.
Urban Battleground Fractal: Captain Amysh.
-I would argue consecrations here are almost useless, and would suggest Spirit Weapons if you have the proper spec, or Shouts (which you can't go wrong with).
-Everything's easy until he brings out his Fiery Greatsword and one-shots everyone. Maintaining Protection/Retaliation through shouts, or DPS (through spirit weapons, however small) works well. The immobilize on the Scepter, if you can time it with his Fiery Whirl will save you and your party members lives.
-Volcanic Fractal: Legendary Grawl Shaman.
-If you don't cheat, this boss I find is the most challenging for PUGs and truly makes or breaks the team.
-You need to maintain max range, and standing still is a quick way to get killed (you get set on fire if you stand still). Therefore, scepter/shield or focus is generally the best way to handle it. You can melee the boss if you're brave and have lots of blocks/endurance regen, but not a good idea unless you're running 2+ guardians to do this... there are particular times you can melee though.
-At every 25% mark of the boss' health, he will spawn Lava Elementals, and spawn his shield, which requires 30+ attacks (any source of raw damage/bleed/poison) to break. If you don't break it in time, he'll heal about 20%, making you have to repeat the process again. However, due the Guardian's lackluster ability to cause multiple hits in a small span of time (aside from Smite and Whirling Wrath), I suggest going support here in the form of speccing against the lava elementals. If you can get a Shield of Absorption up, you can protect against the lava elementals and give your party members a base of operations against the main boss' shield. I would actually suggest Greatsword here, as you can pull the lava elementals toward you and begin culling them whilst your teammates focus on the more important objective.
As similar as the Volcanic and Uncategorized fractals boss fights' were, keep in mind that getting to both of the fights are very different, as Volcanic has a section where running hammer is very effective, as well as Uncategorized having sections where SYG and Retreat are both very good choices.
Anyway, just my 2c.