Since I started posting and doing theorycrafting, I never really came across an amulet that truly fit rangers, until now.
I could go through the list of all the amulets and explain their pros and cons, and then try to justify why I believe, in my own opinion, that the amulet I am about to suggest is the better option.
But instead I am just going to explain the strengths of the choosing the amulet I have chosen to equip and why I believe, in my opinion and experience in game, that it works.
Without further ado: the Celestial Amulet.
I'm sure people will stop reading after my suggesting, under the assumption that due what the amulet provides compared to other amulets (other amulets having higher stats, but less options), it isn't worthy of slotting. However, it hits some sweet spots for rangers.
I've been experimenting with different things since day 1. Trying all sorts of amulets and such. At first I thought the rabid amulet was the best options. Adding crit chance and condition damage with toughness seemed a strong choice. But I felt molded into a singular playstyle with not enough health for the damage mitigation from toughness to benefit me overall, and not enough healing for my heal to always be significant in changing the fights outcome.
Next I tried the Carrion Amulet. I figured a higher health pool and then traiting/using runes to make up for the lost toughness would be a better option. Survival wise, it is a better option in comparison to an equal, not healing based build. However, that also pigeonholed me into a very singular playstyle (in each case I am talking turret style, mindless auto attacking).
I went through my berserkers phase. There really isn't much to say. Glass cannon is a playstyle choice I dislike and don't agree with its effectiveness on rangers.
I of course had my soldiers amulet phase before and a little after the shortbow quickness and auto attack speed nerf. The build was fun (for me) but ultimately ANet decided it outshined our other builds (and every ranger build has to be mediocre until they can figure out how to balance the game, or so my paranoia leads me to think. Not just rangers though, the whole game is pretty unpolished when it comes to balance and trait effectiveness) and didn't provide "fun" gameplay (they could have asked the community instead of assuming our opinions...).
Finally, I went through my Shamans amulet phase, and while the stats it provides are welcome on any ranger build, it leaves a lot missing.
So, why the celestial amulet? Well, healing is one of the best investments ranger can make in stats. Healing Spring is widely accepted as one of the better skills in the game, and anything that makes it better is good. Additionally, because I run runes of Dwayna on every build (that stat bonus other runes provide can't make up for the amazing amount of regen duration rangers can obtain), my Signet of the Wild ticks for 93 per second.
Signet of the Wild is the best passive survival utility we have. Why? It is essentially that much damage mitigation. A comparison example, and this is for all intensive purposes as I don't feel like addressing diminishing returns and so and so forth, is that adding 100 toughness to your base armor rating mitigates 34 out of every 1000 damage you take (or 3.4% damage mitigation).
Signet of the Wild is essentially mitigating whatever it is healing for out of every 1000 damage you take. That is 9.3% mitigation for this build (with zero in Beastmastery mind you), which is the equivalent of about 300 toughness.
This is only 1 stat. The amulet also provides some much needed vitality and toughness, and with 30 wilderness survival and 18.5k health (2625 armor) you have much more survival against direct damage than the 16k shamans variant.
Condition damage is fair, power is always good, and it even increased crit chance and crit damage. Overall, this build increased all of rangers damage outputs while all of the survival tools, and no real drawbacks.
I'm sure there will be questions and I will explain myself as much as I can with as much detail as I can, but I will provide the builds I tried it on and have had success with.
The 0/0/30/10/30 variant:
Here's a quick build I haven't gotten to test yet:
For lols (also untested):
Edited by JROH, 31 January 2013 - 10:47 AM.