WHO IS THIS BUILD FOR?
PvE Engineers who feel their current role is overshadowed by other professions, players who enjoy playing a healing and/or tanking archetype, and players who enjoy playing an Engineer. This is an advanced build with a very high skill ceiling.
TL;DR AT BOTTOM
BACKGROUND AND INTRODUCTION
(you can skip this part, but if you have any questions, return here)
I would like to start off by talking a little bit about my experiences and thought process in coming up with this build. First, I have a level 80 character of every profession with exotic or better gear except for a thief. I want each of my characters to have a specific role that they can excel in. For example, in my opinion, Warriors are the best at sustained DPS, Guardians are the “anchor” of a party, and Mesmers have the most utility. It is not a surprise that at the highest level of PvE, parties are saturated with only these, so called, tier 1 professions. This is unfortunate because Engineer is my favourite profession, but I end up playing one of the tier 1 professions because it is more accepted in the Guild Wars 2 community. Throughout my Engineer playtime, I have spent a lot of time and gold exploring different builds. I believe, now, I have come up with a role that the Engineer can excel in and be a valuable addition to a party even at the highest levels of PvE. This role revolves around Healing Power and Condition Damage. I am aware that these two attributes are very controversial in the community, but I hope to convince you otherwise with my Tanky Healy Condi Engi PvE build.
Without a doubt, Engineers cannot match the upfront and sustained damage of a Warrior. However, they do have access to a lot of conditions. In fact, Engineers have access to every condition in the game with the exception of fear. The great thing about damage inflicted by conditions is it only depends on 2 attributes: Condition Damage and Condition Duration. On the other hand, upfront damage depends on 3 attributes: Power, Precision, and Critical Damage. In addition, Condition Damage can be derived from Toughness with the use of 6 Superior Runes of the Undead and Master Tuning Crystals. Speaking of consumables, Rare Veggie Pizza gives a whopping 40% Condition Duration, which is one of the few sources of Condition Duration in addition to trait line, certain traits, certain runes, and Giver’s weapons. With this in mind, a character focusing on damage inflicted by conditions should invest in Condition Damage and Toughness gear. These two attributes are found in Rabid’s and Apothecary’s gear. The Precision from Rabid’s gear can be useful for proc’ing additional conditions from a Superior Sigil of Earth or certain traits, for example. However, Healing Power from Apothecary’s gear can be very beneficial with the right profession (I’ll give you a hint: he has a bomb kit).
A support Engineer with Elixir Gun and Elixir-Infused Bombs is not new. However, I have seen many Engineers use Cleric’s gear, probably because it is more accessible and well known. Now with the Living Story taking place in Southsun Cove, and the updates that have come with it, Karka Shells and Passion Flowers are more widely available, and the new ascended backpiece has Apothecary’s attributes too. Apothecary’s gear is now more accessible than ever and what better time to share this build than now. The benefit of Apothecary’s gear over Cleric’s for an Engineer is it takes advantage of the numerous conditions that can be applied from Pistol, Elixir Gun, and Bomb Kit. Also, Power is somewhat of a wasted attribute if not accompanied with high Precision and Critical Damage with regards to Cleric’s gear.
I have tested this build for the entire month of April running various dungeons and fractals and it performs very well. I feel like a Guardian anchor, but I can do a lot more like stealthing the party through certain parts. It is hard to judge how much damage you are producing, but I can kill trash mobs just as quickly as a Guardian anchor. If you would like to see how this build performs, you can send an in-game mail to Volcanis and I can run this build with a party of your choosing. I do not claim to have mastered this build, but I can provide a decent demonstration.
Apothecary’s everything. Pistol of Life + Shield of Battle. 6 Runes of the Undead. Healing Turret + Elixir Gun + Bomb Kit + Elixir R + Supply Crate. Rare Veggie Pizza + Master Tuning Crystal. My current gear:
Note: I will be replacing the Rabid’s backpiece and accessories with Apothecary’s once I have enough Passion Flowers and Guild Commendations.
I believe my gear, skill, and trait choices are obvious, but if not, I’ll add a section here about that. The reason why I go 30 into Explosives is because if I have to attack from range for a particular encounter, I can swap Forceful Explosives for Grenadier and replace Bomb Kit with Grenades.
I will not go through an explanation on how to use this build because it is best to learn how to use it yourself. I will, however, go through some highlights of the build to get you excited about it.
With over 3000 Armor and 15000 Health, this build will act like an anchor to hold agro for the party. In addition, Automated Medical Response will give you a second life as it recharges Healing Turret or Cleansing Burst when you dip below 25% Health. Another way to take advantage of Automated Medical Response is to use Healing Turret for your party and if you get in trouble, Healing Turret will recharge for you when you need it.
One thing to note about the party healing potential is the party has to be quite close to the Engineer to maximize its potential. This is not much of a problem because many experienced speed runs of dungeons involve stacking of some sort.
Highlights of the party healing potential of this build (1427 Healing Power)
- Healing Turret: constant party regeneration (323 per tick)
- Cleansing Burst: 2646 party heal, 3 second water field, and constant party regeneration (323 per tick)
- Regenerating Mist: 1 second water field and 6 seconds of party regeneration
- Super Elixir: 1335 party heal and 10 seconds of healing (364 per tick)
- Healing Mist: 10 seconds of party regeneration (323 per tick)
- Elixir-Infused Bombs: healing bombs (303 per bomb)
- 4 reliable blast finishers: area healing (1685 per blast)
Note: Acid Bomb is currently queued, which will be the 4th area healing
Here is my burst party healing rotation to achieve the above screenshot:
Big Ol’ Bomb – Healing Turret – Cleansing Burst – Magnetic Shield – Magnetic Inversion – Detonate Healing Turret – Acid Bomb
This rotation heals the party for 10355 over 3 seconds and can be performed every 24 seconds.
Using Healing Turret, Super Elixir, and any bomb in the Bomb Kit will heal for 1000 every second for 10 seconds (+1335 from Super Elixir impact heal) for a total of 11335 party healing with 10 seconds of downtime between rotations. For the sake of comparison, you only heal the party for 5800 with no Healing Power.
Highlights of the damage inflicted by conditions with this build (1364 Condition Damage with 3 stacks of might + 70% Condition Duration):
- Fire bomb can maintain constant burning (669 per tick)
- Poison Dart Volley and Fumigate can maintain constant poison (220 per tick)
- Tranquilizer Dart can maintain 8 stacks of bleeding and constant weakness (110 per tick)
- Steel-Packed Powder and Fumigate can put 19 stacks of vulnerability at a time (19% damage)
- Concussion Bomb and Static Shot can put 9 stacks of confusion (3011 per skill)
- Shrapnel has a chance to put a 20 second bleed and can proc 15 times using the below rotation
This is my DPS rotation to achieve the above screenshot:
Fire Bomb – Smoke Bomb – Glue Bomb – Concussion Bomb – Static Shot – Fumigate – Tranquilizer Dart
One thing to note about characters that focus on damage inflicted by conditions is they fare poorly against structures. However, Bomb has a very high damage coefficient. I averaged 783 damage per second with Bomb against a Practice Dummy in LA with 1468 Power, which is respectable.
Highlights of the party condition removal with this build
- Cleansing Burst: removes 2 conditions every 15 seconds
- Fumigate: removes 1 condition per tick (5 ticks total) from allies in the cone of effect (can potentially remove 20 conditions) every 12 seconds (Legendary Archdiviner says hi)
- Super Elixir: removes 1 condition on impact and provides a light field (projectile and whirl finishers remove conditions) every 20 seconds
- Toss Elixir R: removes 1 condition on impact and provides a light field (projectile and whirl finishers remove conditions) every 108 seconds
Highlights of the utility of this build
- 10 seconds of stealth: Big Ol’ Bomb – Healing Turret – Smoke Bomb - Magnetic Shield – Magnetic Inversion – Detonate Healing Turret – Acid Bomb
- 12 stacks of might: Big Ol’ Bomb – Healing Turret – Fire Bomb - Magnetic Shield – Magnetic Inversion – Detonate Healing Turret – Acid Bomb
- Toss Elixir U: blocks / reflects projectiles for 9 seconds
Highlights of control effects with this build
- Knockback: Magnetic Inversion
- Stun: Static Shield
- Daze: Throw Shield
- Launch: Big Ol’ Bomb
- Potentially remove 5 stacks of defiance (Throw Shield can daze twice)
- Crippled: Elixir F and Glue Bomb
- Immobilized: Glue Bomb
- Magnet: pulls a target without getting into combat (swap Tool Kit to another utility after a success pull)
The best way to summarize this build is a Guardian “anchor” build, but with a condition damage twist. Where the Guardian excels in projectile reflection and boons, the Engineer excels in combo fields and armor ignoring damage. However, I do not believe this build can replace a Guardian anchor in a high level party due to reflects being so useful. This is simply an alternative to a Guardian anchor with more healing, support, and control (and personally, a lot more fun).
One way to look at this build is it can accompany a Guardian anchor. I personally do not prefer running 2 Guardians because aegis does not stack in intensity. A party with 2/3 Warriors, 1 Guardian, 1 Engineer, and 1/0 Mesmer seems like a good party composition to me. Even a party with 3 Warriors, 1 Engineer, and 1 Mesmer does not look too bad either.
My hopes with publicizing this build is when you see an Engineer in a party, you can ask them if they are running a Tanky Healy Condi Engi build (or Vol’s Build), and if they are, you can plan your party around a decent anchor. Also, if you enjoy playing an Engineer (like me), here is a build that can play its role very well. In addition, if you find you are getting bored with playing a Guardian anchor, here is something new you can play around with that has the same feel, but with a dash of fun. Last, I hope to convert some players into playing an Engineer because they are a blast.
I would like to try this build with Knight’s Armor with Ruby Orbs, Berserker’s Trinkets, Berserker’s Weapons with Sigils of Accuracy and Battle, Omnomberry Ghost, and a Potent Potion:
This is the gear a Guardian anchor build uses and I would like to see the upfront damage from Bomb and the healing potential.
Apothecary everything. Pistol of Life + Shield of Battle. 6 Runes of the Undead. Healing Turret + Elixir Gun + Bomb Kit + Elixir R + Supply Crate. Rare Veggie Pizza + Master Tuning Crystal.
- TANKY: 3199 Armor + 15082 Health.
- HEALY: 1427 Healing Power. 2 water fields + 10335 burst party heal over 3 seconds or 11335 party healing over 10 seconds
- CONDI: 1364 Condition Damage + 70% Condition Duration. Constant burning (669 per tick) + constant poison (220 per tick) + 9 stacks of confusion (3011 per skill) + 19 stacks of vulnerability + 20 second bleeds (110 per tick)
- 4 party condition removal skills + 2 light fields
- 4 blast finishers + smoke field = 10 s of party stealth
- 4 blast finishers + fire field = 12 stacks of might for party
- 5 CC skills to remove stacks of defiance