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Resource: Dungeon and Fractal PvE Meta Builds

warrior guardian mesmer thief elementalist necromancer engineer dps dungeon fractal

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#1 Nikephoros

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Posted 06 May 2013 - 07:15 PM

As a resource for the community I have compiled all the current (as of April 30 patch) meta builds for PvE dungeons and fractals. A couple of notes...

The utilities should obviously be changed as needed on an encounter by encounter basis. I simply chose the utilities that are most generally used in these builds.

Whenever possible, I left trait choices, or even trait point distributions, blank. These are things that are completely optional OR change based on encounter OR based on which weapon set you use OR are still being actively tested or debated by the community. In short, if all the traits are unspent or trait choices left blank that means you can play with it. If the traits are all filled in, it means it is integral to the build.

I didn't include Ranger because at this time there is no "meta" Ranger build, though it is possible that one will develop prior to the next patch. Sword/Warhorn is probably the closest thing to it at this time.

Lastly, I didn't create any of these builds and I don't claim credit for them. If you disagree with my choices on any of them, I didn't pick them to be confrontational or to trump the build creator. I put the builds up in the manner most commonly done, or most accessible.

I will do my best to keep this thread update as patches are released or until a proper community supported PvX site is developed.

_________________________




Warrior

GS/AM


Guardian

anchor http://gw2buildcraft...v.16.17.19.1i|e

dps http://gw2buildcraft...v.16.17.19.1i|e

Mesmer

shatter http://gw2buildcraft...1.3m.35.38.3q|e


Phantasm Support

Elementalist

Hammer Time


Auras http://gw2buildcraft...1n.26.1z.0.28|e

Thief

backstab http://gw2buildcraft...|58.5b.5g.0.0|e

Necromancer

Daggermancer http://gw2buildcraft...3r.3u.4d.0.4f|e

Engineer

'Nades http://gw2buildcraft...2c.2f.2e.0.30|e


HGH http://gw2buildcraft...2c.2f.2e.0.30|e





Edited by Nikephoros, 02 July 2013 - 01:03 PM.

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#2 Rachmani

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Posted 06 May 2013 - 08:12 PM

Do you know many thieves using that build? I found it increasingly worse the higher I got.
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#3 Galphar

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Posted 06 May 2013 - 08:32 PM

I love how Rangers don't have a Meta Build because no one will take a Ranger in a group right now. FIX Rangers already ANet!!!
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#4 Nikephoros

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Posted 06 May 2013 - 09:30 PM

Do you know many thieves using that build? I found it increasingly worse the higher I got.


It's probably the only Thief build that is worth bringing to a dungeon or Fractal. What's the alternative? P/P? Short Bow clusterbomb spam? S/D that does way less dps for the same risks? It's all they have for instanced pve.
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#5 Rachmani

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Posted 06 May 2013 - 10:05 PM

0/30/25/15/0 Backstab + X melee is what I played up to max (48, we skipped 49 so far). Second melee set varies, S/D, S/P depends on the individual encounters.
10/30/30/0/0 something works, too. Utility through your stealth abilities ain't that bad. Depends on whether you need 15 acro. I'm colorblind, so I need it, just to be sure. I don't see most of the red circles - sadly.

Also, I have to admit, we don't do speedruns. We rarely die, but my group is rather layed back in terms of fractal speed.

Edited by Rachmani, 07 May 2013 - 01:09 AM.

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#6 Epitaph_Blade

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Posted 06 May 2013 - 10:13 PM

buildcraft is not updated.
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#7 Digilodger

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 12:58 AM

Out of curiosity, where did you pull that so-called "meta" elementalist build from? I have never seen any elementalist run that build in Fractals before, much less an ele uses dual-dagger without Superior Sigil of Battle.

Your mesmer "meta" is rather unique, too. Most shatter mesmers run 10/30/0/0/30 instead. And most phantasm mesmers run either 20/20/0/20/10 or 20/20/0/25/5.


Not to say that these are the only ways to go (of course many viable builds are out there), but I wouldn't consider anything outside of the guardian, warrior, and engineer list here "meta."


Great idea for a thread though; hope to see this updated.

Edited by Digilodger, 07 May 2013 - 01:07 AM.

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#8 Elysen

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 01:00 AM

Surprised you haven't put 20/20/0/20/10 Mesmer build down there.
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#9 Nikephoros

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 01:24 AM

Surprised you haven't put 20/20/0/20/10 Mesmer build down there.


Strife's mesmer build sucks and he is the only person who uses it. =P
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#10 Bloggi

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 03:52 AM

Out of curiosity, where did you pull that so-called "meta" elementalist build from? I have never seen any elementalist run that build in Fractals before, much less an ele uses dual-dagger without Superior Sigil of Battle.


There's another very interesting DPS build for elementalists here:

http://www.guildwars...rt-and-control/

There could be some similarities between the way the two builds are run.

Short of the anchor guardian build, the current trend is that anything else that does the greatest up front DPS becomes the 'meta'. With both of these builds there is zero points in Arcane. That means a slower rotation of attunements and reduced boon duration (neither of these builds having any bonus to boon duration as far as I can see), so a Sigil of Battle is not going to be as efficient as a Sigil of Force that grants 5% bonus to damage straight up. Sigil of Accuracy could be a reasonable alternative on the other dagger.
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#11 kfcoco

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 04:23 AM

There is more wrong than right with that necro build. If you are zerkers then go golem or lich, the blind from sitting in plauge is wasted time and damage. Having two sets with a dagger instead of just swapping the offhand when you need is also stupid. Staff is great for starting fights to aoe bomb pulls and pierce before cleaning up with dagger. For PvE if you want dmg anything more than 15 in curses is a waste, better put in soul reaping or death.
I know you said you didn't make these builds but this just spreads poor builds with little synergy to new people.

Edited by kfcoco, 07 May 2013 - 04:27 AM.

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#12 Elysen

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 04:35 AM

Strife's mesmer build sucks and he is the only person who uses it. =P


I've recently began to use it knowing I can benefit from temporal reflect, while being able to adapt it to a more "PUG friendly" build.
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#13 Nikephoros

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 08:25 AM

There is more wrong than right with that necro build. If you are zerkers then go golem or lich, the blind from sitting in plauge is wasted time and damage. Having two sets with a dagger instead of just swapping the offhand when you need is also stupid. Staff is great for starting fights to aoe bomb pulls and pierce before cleaning up with dagger. For PvE if you want dmg anything more than 15 in curses is a waste, better put in soul reaping or death.
I know you said you didn't make these builds but this just spreads poor builds with little synergy to new people.


Actually, you're quite wrong.

1. Lich is DPS neutral with dagger auto attack in a zerker build. So there is little point to it. Whereas the blind has all kinds of utility in difficult trash pulls in fractals and some dungeons.
2. 30 in Curses is needed to maximize your dps. An extra condition on crit and 2% damage per condition is what makes the build viable at all. These builds are, after all, for dungeons and fractals not for farming events in open world content.
3. Having the same dagger on main hand allows you to swap off hands without interrupting your auto-attack chain. This is a basic skill.
------------------

As far as the ele build goes, that's the only Ele build that has the sufficient DPS to justifty it's existence. If you want to gimp your team with a low DPS ele that's your call, but it certainly isn't optimal or meta. As far as why no sigil of battle, since you're using Lighting Hammer and not swapping out of Water Attunement you would draw exactly zero benefit from it.

There's another very interesting DPS build for elementalists here:

http://www.guildwars...rt-and-control/

There could be some similarities between the way the two builds are run.

Short of the anchor guardian build, the current trend is that anything else that does the greatest up front DPS becomes the 'meta'. With both of these builds there is zero points in Arcane. That means a slower rotation of attunements and reduced boon duration (neither of these builds having any bonus to boon duration as far as I can see), so a Sigil of Battle is not going to be as efficient as a Sigil of Force that grants 5% bonus to damage straight up. Sigil of Accuracy could be a reasonable alternative on the other dagger.


1. That is the original build Kitsune made, thanks for linking it. My attribute spread is more optimal for an organized group where certain assumptions are made about what conditions the other party members will be bringing
2. Sigil of Accuracy doesn't stack with Force. But Night does, hence why I suggest Night. There is no other Sigil that really seems worth it at all.

I've recently began to use it knowing I can benefit from temporal reflect, while being able to adapt it to a more "PUG friendly" build.


You're a brave man. Getting pugs to understand to stand behind your curtain so you can use it to block is Sisyphean.
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#14 kfcoco

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 08:43 AM

Actually, you're quite wrong.

1. Lich is DPS neutral with dagger auto attack in a zerker build. So there is little point to it. Whereas the blind has all kinds of utility in difficult trash pulls in fractals and some dungeons.
2. 30 in Curses is needed to maximize your dps. An extra condition on crit and 2% damage per condition is what makes the build viable at all. These builds are, after all, for dungeons and fractals not for farming events in open world content.
3. Having the same dagger on main hand allows you to swap off hands without interrupting your auto-attack chain. This is a basic skill.


As someone who runs 30+ fracs with a necro zerker build every other day I know that plague is no where near as useful as golem for trash, and the higher you get the more important it is to be able to control trash in various ways. It is REALLY hard to mistakenly pull with golem, unless you actually target a far mob and charge it. Golem charge is up every mob pull and the knockdown allows for easy placement of wells and marks, then finish trash off with dagger or DS with 6-7k peircing shots.
At higher lv fractals there are many boss fights where by limiting yourself to only dagger you are more of a burden on your group, that is why telling people that a dagger is the only weapon to use is retarded.

I just disagree with this whole idea of giving people the META build to follow, where its clear you are no expect on all of the builds and certainly are not qualified to direct people to what is considered an appropriate build. When things like this catch on it turns communities to trash and with this topic you are doing nothing but opening the floodgates to that kind of shitstorm.
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#15 hatchet

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 08:44 AM

As far as the ele build goes, that's the only Ele build that has the sufficient DPS to justifty it's existence. If you want to gimp your team with a low DPS ele that's your call, but it certainly isn't optimal or meta.

That's reasonable when you rationalise the build's inclusion based on that additional critera/context, but it's not how the original thread was framed. With the above in mind then perhaps the following is more apt:

As a resource for the community I have compiled all the current (as of April 30 patch) meta builds for PvE dungeons and fractals builds Nikephoros considers suitable for use in organised groups for PvE dungeons and fractals


Edited by hatchet, 07 May 2013 - 08:59 AM.

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#16 Bloggi

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 08:48 AM

2. Sigil of Accuracy doesn't stack with Force. But Night does, hence why I suggest Night. There is no other Sigil that really seems worth it at all.


On the Wiki it does make this statement about sigils:

Permanent stat bonuses do not stack with themselves. Two weapons with Superior Sigil of Force yield only a +5% bonus to damage.


On each of the pages for Sigil of Force and Sigil of Accuracy it also states that two Sigils of Force (or two Sigils of Accuracy) will not stack with each other, however I haven't been able to find a source to say that a Sigil of Force and Sigil of Accuracy will not function together. On the GW2buildcraft site it appears to indicate that they can work at the same time. Then I tried plugging a Sigil of Force on both MH and OH weapons into the calculator and as predicted the damage bonus was still 5%, likewise with two Sigils of Accuracy giving only 5% bonus to crit chance.

I might be missing something here, but what is the rationale for traiting Soothing Winds?

Edited by Bloggi, 07 May 2013 - 10:34 AM.

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#17 Coren

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 08:49 AM

I applaud what you are trying to do OP, but to be honest I don't agree with your engineer meta. Full beserker and rubies aren't exactly optimal. I would suggest comments under each build, or link the builds to the.guru thread that covers it (like.Guang's for engineers).
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#18 Andemius

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 09:25 AM

I think the "anchor" guardian with wall of reflection and Shield of the Avenger deserves a place there, as it becomes increasingly necessary in higher level fractal enounters.
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#19 DarkHorseKnight

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 09:46 AM

This is hardly a definitive guide...

The Warrior pure axe build is kinda MEH and their are at least 2-3 variations on it I've seen that are at least as good if not better.

The thief build is really pure theory crafting I don't know a single thief in game who runs that unchanged in any high level content.

I could go on but I don't really see the point. I think this is maybe a good starting point to develop your own build from to suit you but this is more like the spreadsheet meta if anything, with a good portion of the builds that people often run missing.
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#20 Elysen

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 10:03 AM

You're a brave man. Getting pugs to understand to stand behind your curtain so you can use it to block is Sisyphean.


Lol no, I don't do that. Tried & failed!

What I mean is I have the reflection available when I'm with my guild, but I can replace it for other useful traits for PUG occasions.
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#21 chullster

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 10:10 AM

Though I'm nothing if not a DPS lover, these builds are soooo boring. If they do become meta it will be a sad day for GW2.

Hammer ele compared to playing D/D? snooze-fest
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#22 Dasryn

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 10:22 AM

It's probably the only Thief build that is worth bringing to a dungeon or Fractal. What's the alternative? P/P? Short Bow clusterbomb spam? S/D that does way less dps for the same risks? It's all they have for instanced pve.


S/D offers better survivability. i would imgaine that is important in higher level fractals.
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#23 Xunlai Agent

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 11:35 AM

I find this effort exceptionally laudable and sincerely hope you continue this marvelous project irrespective of your detractors. I hope that this list is maintained for the foreseeable future because I think it's phenomenally helpful for new players. While I disagree with you on the thief build you posted and I am still opposed to taking anchor guardians over glass guardians (it's like the crutch Strife has for his warrior where he still wears pieces of knights when all DPS warriors should be clad in full berserkers) - I must commend you for making this thread. This is what Guru needs more of instead of additional threads arguing for tank gear, snowflake insanity and the efficacy of condition damage.


Your mesmer "meta" is rather unique, too. Most shatter mesmers run 10/30/0/0/30 instead. And most phantasm mesmers run either 20/20/0/20/10 or 20/20/0/25/5.

This is incorrect, the vast majority of DPS shatter Mesmers are running 20/20/0/0/30 setups. I am fairly certain I know why you posted that shatter spec and I would recommend you look into the discussion on this issue on the Mesmer boards. I disagree with Nike's individual traits and I take different ones, but his trait spread of 20/20/0/0/30 is most certainly accurate and correct.

Strife's mesmer build sucks and he is the only person who uses it. =P

I think Strife's Mesmer build is pretty bad personally and I am still surprised that he thinks it's a better setup than the one you posted. I cannot for the life of me understand the justification for it and even if one insists on "group dynamics" I think it makes better sense to spec the glass cannon version that is currently dominant.

I applaud what you are trying to do OP, but to be honest I don't agree with your engineer meta. Full beserker and rubies aren't exactly optimal.

They are optimal actually, some calculations (always with the numbers never with the videos) were posted in this regard. One of Guan's theorycrafting buddies provided some math on this and I am fairly sure Guan agreed, so it works on paper - don't expect any videos though!

I just disagree with this whole idea of giving people the META build to follow, where its clear you are no expect on all of the builds and certainly are not qualified to direct people to what is considered an appropriate build. When things like this catch on it turns communities to trash and with this topic you are doing nothing but opening the floodgates to that kind of shitstorm.

Feel free to disagree then buddy, you need never revisit this thread again in the future. Providing people with a resource for tried and tested builds is a brilliant contribution even if you cannot seem to handle it. This turns communities into better players as people that disagree will justify their differences with the dominant build and explain why their snowflake happens to be better. If anything, not having resources and not discussing possible builds makes communities stay bad. If you hate the list then make your own or post alternate builds? All MMO communities look for ideas like this and if you have such an aversion to it then I can only recommend not reading the PvE part of the forum in the future. This development is a good thing and should be welcomed even if you happen to disagree with some of the intricacies.
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#24 Coren

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 12:04 PM

I find this effort exceptionally laudable and sincerely hope you continue this marvelous project irrespective of your detractors. I hope that this list is maintained for the foreseeable future because I think it's phenomenally helpful for new players. While I disagree with you on the thief build you posted and I am still opposed to taking anchor guardians over glass guardians (it's like the crutch Strife has for his warrior where he still wears pieces of knights when all DPS warriors should be clad in full berserkers) - I must commend you for making this thread. This is what Guru needs more of instead of additional threads arguing for tank gear, snowflake insanity and the efficacy of condition damage.



This is incorrect, the vast majority of DPS shatter Mesmers are running 20/20/0/0/30 setups. I am fairly certain I know why you posted that shatter spec and I would recommend you look into the discussion on this issue on the Mesmer boards. I disagree with Nike's individual traits and I take different ones, but his trait spread of 20/20/0/0/30 is most certainly accurate and correct.


I think Strife's Mesmer build is pretty bad personally and I am still surprised that he thinks it's a better setup than the one you posted. I cannot for the life of me understand the justification for it and even if one insists on "group dynamics" I think it makes better sense to spec the glass cannon version that is currently dominant.


They are optimal actually, some calculations (always with the numbers never with the videos) were posted in this regard. One of Guan's theorycrafting buddies provided some math on this and I am fairly sure Guan agreed, so it works on paper - don't expect any videos though!


Feel free to disagree then buddy, you need never revisit this thread again in the future. Providing people with a resource for tried and tested builds is a brilliant contribution even if you cannot seem to handle it. This turns communities into better players as people that disagree will justify their differences with the dominant build and explain why their snowflake happens to be better. If anything, not having resources and not discussing possible builds makes communities stay bad. If you hate the list then make your own or post alternate builds? All MMO communities look for ideas like this and if you have such an aversion to it then I can only recommend not reading the PvE part of the forum in the future. This development is a good thing and should be welcomed even if you happen to disagree with some of the intricacies.


Well,.from.personal.experience I prefer using rampager over beserker, specifically because most pugs go beserker:) means your conditions contribute best.
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#25 Nikephoros

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 01:51 PM

S/D offers better survivability. i would imgaine that is important in higher level fractals.


Stuff one shots you regardless. Either you know what to dodge, have party reflects, know when to use your shadow refuge... or you don't.

I think the "anchor" guardian with wall of reflection and Shield of the Avenger deserves a place there, as it becomes increasingly necessary in higher level fractal enounters.


I said in the preamble... "The utilities should obviously be changed as needed on an encounter by encounter basis. I simply chose the utilities that are most generally used in these builds."

As someone who runs 30+ fracs with a necro zerker build every other day I know that plague is no where near as useful as golem for trash, and the higher you get the more important it is to be able to control trash in various ways. It is REALLY hard to mistakenly pull with golem, unless you actually target a far mob and charge it. Golem charge is up every mob pull and the knockdown allows for easy placement of wells and marks, then finish trash off with dagger or DS with 6-7k peircing shots.
At higher lv fractals there are many boss fights where by limiting yourself to only dagger you are more of a burden on your group, that is why telling people that a dagger is the only weapon to use is retarded.



You can change your utilities and elites on an encounter by encounter basis so the debate over Lich or Plague is ridiculous. Just use whichever is better at that point in time.
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#26 Nikephoros

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 01:57 PM

Feel free to disagree then buddy, you need never revisit this thread again in the future. Providing people with a resource for tried and tested builds is a brilliant contribution even if you cannot seem to handle it. This turns communities into better players as people that disagree will justify their differences with the dominant build and explain why their snowflake happens to be better. If anything, not having resources and not discussing possible builds makes communities stay bad. If you hate the list then make your own or post alternate builds? All MMO communities look for ideas like this and if you have such an aversion to it then I can only recommend not reading the PvE part of the forum in the future. This development is a good thing and should be welcomed even if you happen to disagree with some of the intricacies.


I think people are getting lost in the minutia of the individual utility skills, or individual trait choices when there is obviously room for debate. These builds are starting points and can be tuned in 1000 different ways based on player experience.

I'm sure a lot of people find the ele build controversial, but honestly there is no other ele build that does anything that can't be done better by a Guardian or Engineer. This ele build has superior DPS to nearly anything and because of that is worthy of mention. Would you have preferred I included some horrible low DPS, low team utility auramancer build that people seem to love? Geez.
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#27 shio

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 02:18 PM

Question about that shatter build: are you supposed to be killing your phantasms and illusions as soon as they're up or are you supposed to leave them so you get the bonus from Compounding Power? I watch strife's videos and he doesn't tend to shatter much, but the meta build you suggested has 30 into the shatter tree.
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#28 Drops

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 03:46 PM

Can't speak for anything except guardian, but using 1h weapons and not going mandatory 30 Radiance for Right Hand Strength is madness for a DPS build. Also, a mininum of 20 points in Valor for Empowering Might is taken by nearly every sword or greatsword build.

Really, there's only 10 points left over for a 1h build, and while there is some choice, I'd say 10 in virtues for Unscathed Contener/Master of Consecrations is the most solid choice.

Pretty much there's no real flexibility. It's going to be 10/30/0/20/10 for the most well rounded 1h dps build. Some dps greatsword builds exist out there, but aside from the pull on the gsword, I don't find a gsword as a significatly better as a dps weapon, despite their popularity.
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#29 razor39999

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 05:54 PM

Here's a token ranger build that should probably slowly become meta - http://gw2buildcraft...j|4i.4n.0.0.0|e

The secondary weapon is based on the situation - gsword (just use 2 and 3 and swap back over to sword) if there's no need to range which most of the time there isn't, or sbow if you really do need range.

5 remaining trait points can be used for:
a ) nature magic if frost spirit is worth taking in that particular dungeon (lots of longer boss fights with safe spots to drop the thing);
b ) skirmishing for some extra crit damage;
c ) wilderness survival for passive endurance regen;
d ) beast mastery for 50 bonus pet stats and cat bleeds on crit if you have no 25 bleed stacker already in the party, or alternatively if running with birds (which I wouldn't recommend) for the aoe vigor on bird swapping.

If you absolutely can't get used to the sword (it's not THAT hard) go with those 20 in nature magic, take the 5% greatsword dmg trait and use that as the main weapon. But the gsword aa is noticeably inferior than the sword's. Altho with gsword as main weapon you could use a more offensive food buff, like the butternut squash.

The pets would be jaguar and the second according to the needs of the situation - stalker, carrion devourer, alpine wolf/hound, jungle spider, red moa, one of the drakes are the most solid options that should cover most encounters.

Oh and ranger runes get their extra damage bonus regardless if the pet is dead or alive, so they are imo the most optimal choice.

About the other builds - the only one that caught my eye as kinda meh is the full axe warrior, even with eviscerate spamming as much as possible I don't think it can compete with the other build.

EDIT:
Just noticed the necro build and a staff on secondary slot really is useful, not just because it's a ranged option, but because it has great team utility - blast finisher/condition removal, poison field, bit of aoe regen, fear for running through stuff. And overall it's the main choice the necro has for some decent AoE when that is needed.

Edited by razor39999, 07 May 2013 - 06:04 PM.

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#30 Lilitu

Lilitu

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 06:47 PM

Well,.from.personal.experience I prefer using rampager over beserker, specifically because most pugs go beserker:) means your conditions contribute best.


Surely if the rest of your group are zerkers that means your conditions are even more useless than normal due to the low life expectancy of enemy mobs?
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