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How to use DPS pets with Longbow/Axe/Horn build?

longbow axe ax eagle owl bird birds dps pet pets

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#1 ZioGio


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Posted 14 December 2012 - 02:19 PM

I'm looking for suggestions on how to use a DPS pet like an eagle or owl with my longbow/axe/horn build and not have it die in two hits by a veteran or stronger.

First, I love my ranger. In the real world I compete competitively in longbow and thrown axe target competitions so this combination is a lot of fun for me to play in the game. Also, proper (and lucky) pet/weapon switch timing allows me to outlast situations that I really have no right to be in and that survivability also makes the ranger fun.

I believe a good measure of this success is attributable to using bears as tanking pets (specifically my Arctodus) who never seem to suffer more than a scratch unless I'm soloing a champion. The thing is, I want to use my eagle and owl because I like their animations and I've always wanted to learn falconry, but I can't seem to make it work on any tough mob like a veteran or above; the birds go down quickly and I can't swap them out fast enough in a tough fight.

I also have the same problem with the Krytan drakehound and shark, my other two favorite-looking pets.

I'm currently a level 37 Human ranger, longbow/axe/horn, and I spec for precision/power/vitality. The slot skills I use are Healing Spring, Signet of the Wild, Signet of Stone, and Rampage as One. In the traits I have 10 in Marksmanship (Steady Focus), 10 in Skirmishing (Companion's Might) and the remaining seven in Nature Magic.

Thank you for your time and recommendations.
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#2 ScorpioSpork


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Posted 15 December 2012 - 12:22 AM

I've been using birds recently with my condition build in PvE and WvW. Have you tried putting at least 15 points into Beastmastery for Zephyr's Speed and Loud Whistle? Loud Whistle made a huge difference for me (and it works so well with Zephyr's Speed and Mighty Swap).

If you're still having problems, you could try keeping your pets on passive and managing them a little more closely. Unfortunately birds are never going to be able to tank a vet for you, which is why F4 is constantly on cooldown for me. I also use the Raven and White Raven for their blind, which helps keep them alive in PvE.
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#3 SesimieStreetFighter


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Posted 15 December 2012 - 03:11 AM

Cool another RL life archer! welcome to the wild world of Rangering....

I've been mainly farming Orr with my Ranger and i've been enjoying the ranged trap and longbow 5 synergy.....but i need a pet that can

1. Stay in the fray long enough to be a distraction
2. Apply Aoe on it's own ....to help "tag" Dynamic event mobs...

So far the Drakes and Bears are working well ......Reff drake has an AOE confusion condition that is awesome against risen....but the river drake Lightning bounces around and does more initial damage.

Bears has the advantage of 4K vitality and enough toughness....they even heal themselves!

My recommendation would be to use traps....to keep mobs off of you....and your pet is a glorified meatshield.

Look for the farming Orr build for rangers.....and max skirmishing to 30 to get the most benefit from traps.

I used to be a Beastmaster....but ranged traps are so much more effective against large zergs!!

Oh and because other playes kill mobs so fast....don't rely on conditions....

P.S. I Bow to Bows!!
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#4 Trei


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Posted 15 December 2012 - 03:20 AM

Make sure you swap your pet before it dies.

The Guard shout is... surprisingly effective for giving your pet that extra bit of defensive boost, especially if you need it to stay alive for a few more seconds for your swap cooldown etc.

It is also an instant pet saver in situations where you already F3 recalled the pet but the mob is still bent on killing it; Guard stealths your pet and lose all aggro from mobs entirely as long as your pet does not continue to attack.
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#5 ZioGio


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Posted 15 December 2012 - 10:53 AM

Great advice, everyone. Just what I was looking for. Thanks!
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#6 Aaron Demonsniper

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Posted 16 December 2012 - 04:04 AM

A big thing I've found is picking your pets based on a given situation. I love to use spiders for their range and cc, but they die far too easily in high level areas. In Orr and dungeons, I use bears almost all the time.

High beastmastery is, of course, quite helpful. Picking the natural healing grandmaster trait, if you choose to put a full thirty points in, makes them much more survivable. Master's Bond is okay, but you lose out on swapping - use it only if you're sure your pet won't die, or you're wasting a trait.

Reading that you currently have marksmanship and skirmishing, I'd say think about trying out a couple of other pet-related traits. If you are using a pet that has a fair amount of conditions, check out Malicious Training in marksmanship. 50% extra duration is pretty effective. As for the skirmishing trait, a single might stack for one second is pretty ineffective. Check out Agility Training to give 30% extra movement speed. Getting to and moving between targets quickly will make your pet far more useful.

I hope this helps, and enjoy playing though to 80!

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