|Warrior • Ranger • Monk • Necromancer • Mesmer • Elementalist • Assassin • Ritualist • Paragon • Dervish|
Warriors, along with their less heavily armored counterparts, the Dervishes, form the very front of any well balanced party. They can be proficient in any number of weapons and do very large amounts of damage per second (or DPS) to enemies. Warriors have massive amounts of armor and health with extremely small pools of energy. As a result, they manage their energy with "adrenaline", which pools up in each skill separately.
- "When you use attack skills, each point of Strength gives you 1% armor penetration. Many skills, especially those related to surviving and inflicting damage, become more effective with higher Strength."
Strength can give you access to shields, high levels of armor penetration, and large amounts of armor-increasing skills. In addition, Strength increases power of a few untyped and rather unremarkable skills such as Power Attack
- "Swordsmanship increases the damage you do with swords and your chance to inflict a critical hit when using a sword. Many skills, especially sword attack skills, become more effective with higher Swordsmanship."
Swords have a damage range of 15-22. At level 11 or more, they are outclassed by axes in DPS because of critical hit ratios. A sword's only source of Deep Wound comes from Gash, a skill that relies on Bleeding. In PvE, against a non-fleshy creature, swords often get outclassed by axes due to this weakness. In PvP, premature removal of the bleeding isn't as large a problem problem because attack skills are often used in a spike rather than over time.
- "Axe Mastery increases the damage you do with axes and your chance to inflict a critical hit when using an axe. Many skills, especially axe attack skills, become more effective with higher Axe Mastery."
Axes have several advantages to Swords. Firstly, at higher levels they have higher DPS than swords. Secondly, they have unconditional Deep Wound. Axes, for this reason, are very often found in PvP for those advantages alone. The shock axe is a prime example of a venerable design and versatility.
- "Hammer Mastery increases the damage you do with hammers and your chance to inflict a critical hit when using a hammer. Many skills, especially hammer attacks skills, become more effective with higher Hammer Mastery."
By not using a shield, Hammers trade defensiveness for brute force. Hammer skills focus on knockdown and weakness and have multiple skills that play off of both. They cause disruption by keeping people on the ground. A Hammer warrior's DPS is highest against non-moving targets but is worse against moving targets compared to Axes.
- "No inherent effect. Many skills, especially defensive skills and skills that aid your allies, become more effective with higher Tactics."
Tactics have numerous defensive skills focusing around not just assisting you, but allies as well. Skills such as Healing Signet, the arch typical warrior self-heal reside in this line as do other common staples such as "Watch Yourself!".
Types of Warriors
The tank is synonymous with warrior in PvE and is the standard of PvE gameplay for Warriors. It is used interchangeably as though it meant the same thing. Tanks focus around using blocking stances and armor gaining skills to round up aggro on themselves while the rest of the party does the killing. Note that this is only effective in PvE where AI is stupid and will actually attack a warrior. This is also what most people expect a warrior to do in PvE so expect to be a Tank until you can do PvP.
Sword Warriors rely on pressuring. Whether this is through conditions or the elite Dragon Slash is all the same, but sword warriors apply pressure in some way or another. Sword Warriors are commonly used in splits in GvG.
Axe Warriors provide spiking power. They can be used by themselves or with a group but one thing is for sure: Axe spikes are not a thing to be trifled with. Their DPS puts great pressure on casters.
Hammers hit hard but slowly. Their knockdowns are powerful and weakness can be powerful condition. Hammers are oftentimes used for spike assist- knocking down a person while the rest of the team pummels the target with their most hard-hitting spells and attacks.
The Linebacker is an unorthodox type of build popularized by the guild Idiot Savants [iQ]. It relies on having a tremendous amount of knockdowns to keep a priority target out of the fight, most likely a warrior attacking a low-armor team member (e.g. a monk). Their damage is mediocre but the linebacker makes up for it by keeping casters alive.
"Fear Me" Energy Denial
A "Fear Me" Warrior is so called because of the skill "Fear Me!". Builds that are focused around this skill focus on gaining adrenaline fast enough to spam it repeatedly, causing energy loss. Such warriors are usually lacking in damage but make up for it in pressure on the enemy team's energy bars, however the popular Steady Stance scythe warriors do powerful damage, as well as using Fear Me! every 6 seconds.
A type of gimmick build, warriors of this variety use the armor penetration of Strength with other weapons such as the Spears of a Paragon. These builds are suited to PvE gameplay only.
IWAY is an abbreviation of the skill "I Will Avenge You!". From the archived IWAY article:
- "The IWAY build is based around the "I Will Avenge You!" shout when used in combination with |pets belonging to several warrior/rangers. "I Will Avenge You!" takes all dead allies in the area into account, which includes |pets. When several dead pets are in the area, the attack speed boost and health regeneration of this shout can be maintained indefinitely. This build is deadly when used correctly and is hard to counter once activated. The best preventative action to take would be to avoid killing the pets, rendering this skill useless. IWAY builds were popular in the prophecies days but after receiving some hard-hitting nerfs, IWAY teams are no longer popular."
Before IWAY there was Berserk. Although Berserk is not truly IWAY it's worth a mention as it is the forefather of IWAY. Berserk was originally created as a joke build. Berserk consisted of 6 Warrior/Rangers with pets used to confuse enemies into thinking it was fighting the whole team while 2 order necros with 55 health hid in the spawn. At that time Orders were a World Enchantment and affected all players at any distance.
For quite awhile, IWAY consisted completely of 6 W/Rs, 1 Tainted Necromancer, and 1 Orders Necromancer. It was general practice, at one time, to have one W/R carry Revive Animal to transport dead pets from one area of the map to another. Most groups have stopped using this skill. They opt, instead, to stay near their dead pets. This has since been replaced by the second EoE.
After this came 2 trappers, at the time, the IWAY groups brought 2 resolve trappers. This was to spam conditions on enemies, and give the Orders, and Tainted Necromancers a way out of the heat if being chased, barbed trap would slow chasers. One of the trappers generally took Winnowing, but it was later discovered that balanced builds could easily defeat IWAY using Aegis. So then the IWAY build became 4 W/R, 1 N/Mo, 1 N/E, 1 R/Me, 1 R/Mo.
The September 29th, 2005 update reduced the maximum attack speed bonus to 33%, down from 50%, slightly reducing the effectiveness of the IWAY build. The March 3rd, 2006 update further reduced the effectiveness of the build, by cutting the attack speed bonus from the IWAY skill to 25%, and modifying Order of the Vampire to no longer stack with other necromancer enchantments.
With the release of Guild Wars Factions on April 28th, 2006, many IWAY teams have taken to using the new elite orders spell Order of Apostasy to remove the protective enchantments of enemies, as well as providing an extra healer in the N/Mo generally used. This is a very common build now, especially among the more highly ranked IWAYs. Order of Apostasy (abbreviated as OoA), is also effective in destroying the enchantments usually used to protect the Ghostly Hero in the Hall of Heroes, and thus is more effective at capturing the Hall of Heroes.
The latest and last change in IWAY was a Psychic Distraction Mesmer who replaced one of the four warriors. IWAY teams were finding it difficult to interrupt the Ghostly Hero on Altar maps with Distracting Blow/Disrupting Chop because of the Ritualist Spirit Displacement. The Psychic Distraction Mesmer came along and worked with the Order of Apostasy Necromancer to make sure Spellbreaker was not on the enemy Ghostly Hero when Psychic Distraction was used.
- Round up aggro
- Use an IAS to build up adrenaline.
- Wail away at one target at a time, starting with healers (Ritualists or Monks).
- Cause Deep Wound.
- Attack targets not under the effects of protective spells.
- Tell your teammates about anti-melee hexes and conditions so that they can remove them.
- Rarely use attack skills while blinded or hexed with miss hexes.
- Use IAS to increase your DPS and speed up your spikes.
- Change targets often.
- Spike with your allies.
- Pressure the main threat on the enemy team, but don't forget that your goal is to kill the enemy team.
- If your team's defense is unable to cope with the enemy team's pressure, consider attacking the enemy Warriors or Dervishes (although attacking a Melandru Dervish in form is pointless) to force them to play less aggressively. Knockdowns and Crippling are particularly useful in this situation.
- Use after a Deep Wound to finish off the enemy because of the extremely fast activation time.
- Interrupts a foes action and does additional damage.
- Fast activation time and it may interrupt an opponent. Good damage regardless.
- On almost every Hammer build ever. It causes Deep Wound.
- While once good, it got nerfed into oblivion. Not worth taking anymore.
- Adrenaline management.
- Useful for adrenaline management. Combines well with Earth Shaker.
- A rather niche skill. Useful for R/W Stance Tanks.
- Very effective with Steady Stance.
- Both of these can actually be used with any melee weapon. They have fast activation times and thusly can be useful for spiking.
- Either Crippling Slash or Sever Artery will be found on almost every Sword warrior's bar. It's the Swordsmanship-specced warrior's only deep wound after all.
- Useful for managing adrenaline due to the double-strike property.
- Useful as a finisher. Lost some of its magic when Sun and Moon Slash came out.
- Each of these do large amounts of damage. Decapitate isn't used commonly because of its side effect. Cleave has the highest DPS of the three elites but has no Deep Wound. However, when using more than one adrenal skill, Cleave actually loses DPS, as its adrenaline pool is lowered prematurely. Eviscerate and Decapitate have higher DPS in this circumstance.
- Powerful knockdown or damaging skills. Each one of these hurts.
- AoE Hammer attack. Only useful for PvE.
- Bull's Strike is a commonly used knockdown in PvP.
- Hammer warriors often run one of the knockdown elites, such as Devastating Hammer, Earth Shaker, or Back Breaker. Sometimes, hammer warriors run Hammer Bash in addition to or instead of these elites. With Devastating Hammer, some use Heavy Blow instead of Hammer Bash for more damage.
- Shock is often ran on warriors in PvP for a reliable knockdown, interrupt, and snare.
- Increase movement speed and snare in one. Useful for compressing warrior bars.
- Catch kiting foes with this. A staple of almost every PvP warrior.
- Provides bleeding, which covers the cripple. Following immediately with Gash ensures that even Mending Touch won't remove it.
- Costs a ton of energy. Stay away if possible.
- Extremely conditional. Try to stay away from it if possible.
- Use your knockdowns as snares in addition with Bull's Strike.
- Excels in ganks and in AB. Also, numerous skills play off of those conditions.
- A guaranteed knockdown is fine and dandy, but it takes away your elite slot.
Increase Attack Speed
- Common in PvE and on hammer warriors. Use with a cancel stance in PvP to catch kiting foes.
- The IAS of choice in PvP. Warriors aren't attack often due to their high armor so Frenzy is fine. Use with a cancel stance if you are under attack.
Increase Movement Speed
- Increase movement speed and snare in one. Useful for compressing warrior bars.
- Each of these have a 20 second cooldown and last about 13-15 seconds at relatively high levels of strength. Enraging charge ends if you attack but gives you adrenaline in return.
- Arguably the best cancel stance. A mere 4 adrenaline and lasts an exceedingly long time.
- Allows the use of a different cancel stance such as Hex Breaker as well as the obvious effect of the skill itself.
- A commonly used skill for its strong speed boost. The short recharge also makes it an excellent cancel stance.
- A sword warrior's only source of Deep Wound. Use with Sever Artery.
- Each cause an unconditional Deep Wound. Eviscerate is the most common because of its added damage. Decapitate has hefty drawbacks making it nothing more than a novelty. Dismember is used in tandem with elites like Battle Rage.
- Use with a knockdown. The elite knockdowns are your best bet.
- Effective with more tactics rather than more strength. Adrenal-charge makes it a bit wonky.
- The defacto heal for a warrior. -40 armor is bypassed by the already massive armor of a warrior.
- See above.
- Effective even with very small investment into Healing Prayers. Can be countered easily by too much degen.
- A useful speed boost and strong adrenaline gain skill. A Furious weapon is very useful in combination with this skill.
- Dragon Slash enables nearly constant spam of attack skills, creating considerable pressure. Commonly used in PvE and PvP.
- Since it hits twice, Sun and Moon Slash does provide some adrenaline gain.
- Allows 20 seconds of incredible adrenaline skill use, but is useless for 25 seconds while it recharges. It is particularly useful on hammer warriors, who can charge high-cost skills like Backbreaker in one hit with this skill in combination with Enraging Charge.
- Extremely useful for Strength tanking. Can be kept up perpetually at Strength 15 or higher.
- Both provide an armor boost but Shields Up is far more conditional and can't be kept up forever by one person.
- Both are useful for tactics tanking by providing moderate armor and blocking in one stance.
- Both of these are used for tanking in the Domain of Anguish because of the powerful enemy spells used there. Requires some very powerful energy management to use effectively.
- If fully aware of the enemies being fought, either of these can be used with essentially no points in Inspiration Magic.
- Good for stopping assassin attack chains.
- Only blocks arrows.
- Energy management.
- 5 energy 75% block stances with a condition attached to them. Used for PvE Tactics tanking.
- Good for runners.
- Can be used as a last minute health boost.
Skills to avoid
- Very lackluster damage. Quivering Blade and Dragon Slash are both better. For AoE, use Triple Chop and Cyclone Axe in PvE only.
- Both of these downright awful because of how plain they are. They attempt to do spike-like damage which is better done by an axe. Swords would benefit better from Sever Artery/Gash than these two plain things.
- You should always be in an IAS stance.
- Terrible health gain for too high a cost. A lost pip of regen could mean sacrificing an IAS sometimes. Furthermore, it won't heal when it's needed to.
- Terrible health gain for too high a cost. Using it on a warrior depletes about 1/3 to 1/2 of your energy and warriors have a small pool of energy to start with.
- Extremely Small health gain ineffective without divine favor.
In PvE, using almost anything is acceptable. Radiant Insignias are fine, as are -5 physical damage 20% chance shields.