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#7860800 May 21, 2013 at 02:13 PM
13 Posts
Hi there guys, thought I would get things started on a Ranger build, seeing as my main, Svimara, is one.

Before I start, I would just like to say that, this is my first time writing such a guide, so bare with me. I'll have to edit it over time probably. Also, if anyone has any advice or input, feel free to leave a comment or message me. I am in no way an expert on this subject, but I have been playing a ranger since I first started playing GW2, so I have a lot of hours logged. Feel free to help out with this guide though, as I'm sure I'll be wrong in places!

RULE #1:

The main thing you need to remember about Rangers, as with most classes in Guild Wars 2, is that there is no set way to play them. Sure, there are optimal ways, or ways that work better on bosses, but the rule I've always stuck by in games like these is this:

Play it your way

If you don't like the build I'm setting out here, there is no harm done. This is just what works for me, what works for you will most likely be entirely different.

That being said, I'm still ironing out problems with the build I use now. It works, but not it isn't as fluid as it used to be with a longbow.

The Build:

I am a Condition Trapper. I don't have a snappier title for it, I'm afraid. Basically, I specialise in not being hit by the enemy, or, if I am, it isn't very much.

The main build looks like this.

However, I know I have to swap some of the talents around for a lot of boss fights, and anything like Jormag or Shatterer.

The Gear

For gear, I spent a lot of time using a longbow, and I was doing a hell of a lot of damage to everything around me, when I realised that my old shortbow had a much larger range of conditions. I also use a sword and warhorn. I find this equally efficient, if not better, than using the axe/warhorn combo.

Primary Weapon:

I would recommend a shortbow. The skills are reasonable, and the conditions from them will only be heightened by your conditions stats. Most of the skills have a condition or two, and the one that doesn't has a speed buff, and a jump back that helps you get out of the way of would-be attackers.

Secondary Weapon

I would suggest either the combo of a sword & warhorn, or an axe & warhorn.

Personally, I use sword, as I have said, but both work equally as well in my opinion.

The sword has some pretty good conditions you can apply to your foes, as well as ways to dodge without using up all your precious endurance. It also helps to buff your pet (we will talk about pet choice at a later stage)

The axe is fine if you want to stay at range at all times, and is better suited to multiple enemies than the sword, but with that, the damage from some of the abilities are a good bit lower due to the ability to split the damage between foes. It has less conditions than the sword, which is why I find the sword to be superior, but a lot of condition trappers use axe/warhorn, so there must be something in it. Most likely, it is our ability to take on multiple opponents at once, damaging all at once with the traps.

Off Hand:

Warhorns are the staple for most rangers who dual weild. The speed boost and general buff to allies and ourselves is hugely beneficial at times, such world bosses, jumping puzzles or even in dungeons and fractals. "Hunters Call" is also a powerful skill, as it does a large amount of damage (and if you use it on a boss, the birds that come are HUGE, which always makes me laugh).

Torches are of use for a condition trapper, but I have yet to try this so I will get back to you on that. Both skills have reasonable conditions on them, so I will need to test this.

Daggers are beneficial, as they have some massive conditions on them, but I have only tried this out for a short time so, again, I will have to get back to you on this.

Axes in the off hand are pretty much just a waste for this build, so avoid it if you can.

If anyone else has any input for weapon combinations or anything like that, please comment or email me and I will happily edit the post.


I can't really tell you what to do, in this respect, but I will give some advice, which is pretty obvious seeing as this is a condition build. Aim for "Condition Damage" (or "Condition Duration" if you have to) stats. This is the primary thing you need to worry about as, as far as I know, precision doesn't help conditions to crit. I would suggest aiming for power as an alternative stat in this case. Twilight Arbour is a good place to get some nice condition gear if you are having trouble with the temples in Orr.

Sigils & Runes

This is where it can get pricey. Some of the best sigils and runes can cost a fair amount of gold, but sometimes they're worth it.
Unlike Precision builds, you don't need to go with Rune of Air on your weapons. You're not as likely to crit, therefore you don't need anything that is "on crit". You would be much better with something that bolsters your already going conditions, such as Sigil of Superior Agony/Venom or something of the like. For runes, I would suggest, again, Twilight Arbours Dungeon Merchant for this one. She has all of the "Rune of the Nightmare" set, so if possible, go with Superior Rune of the Nightmare. This is a brilliant set, full of condition damage and condition duration stats. I would suggest either looking at those, or, if you're really dedicated, looking at her gear, as it already has the right stats for this build, and has the rune on each piece.


Finally, we come to the skills. This will include the healing skills.

Healing Spring: The one I use for most fights, simply because it heals others and provides regen and cures conditions. It is the only one I've used for a long time, due to it being so good. It has a longer cooldown than "Heal as One", but it does so much more than that ability.

Troll Ungent: This is probably our weakest heal. It heals over time, as opposed to healing straight away. The regen means it works our that it heals more than "Healing Spring" in the long run, but if you're in trouble, and don't have time to wait, this could be the difference between life and death. It also lacks a condition curing ability.

Heal as One: This is the heal you will have started out with, but it is still reasonably strong. It does half the job of "Healing Spring", but what it lacks is, again, any type of condition curing ability.

At higher levels, the amount any of these heal is pretty low, so you'd be best using it at about half health if you think you'll need it at all. 20-30 seconds wait for it to regen is nothing, and you'll save the money not TPing to the nearest Waypoint.

Other Skills

As a Trapper, you will want to use traps as much as possible, obviously. You're not called a trapper for nothing, eh?

There are five traps at your disposal, but which one to use?

Spike Trap: Causes bleeding and crippling to anyone caught in it's area. This is one of your more direct traps, however, it has a high cooldown, so there are better traps to use.

Flame Trap: This trap has a very low cooldown, and causes a lot of damage to anyone or anything in the area of effect. Use it wisely and you can take down many foes at once.

Frost Trap: This is less of a damage trap and a lifesaver. If you bite off more than you can chew, or your dungeon mates are mostly dead, this could be your salvation. Throw this bad boy down and you can slow enemies a vast amount and they'll "chill" and stop attacking you so much as their cooldowns are raised a considerable amount. The only issue is, much like the spike trap, that this also has a 30 second cooldown. Use it sparingly and only when you feel the time is right, and it will grant you victory, and a pat on the back from the dead team mates around you.

Viper's Nest: This is a strong trap, as long as a lot of enemies are hit at once with it. It does a large chunk of damage, and makes enemies heals pretty much non-existent. Very worth using just fighting regular mobs and bosses alike. Always have this one on my bar. The cooldown is tiny, so spam it if necessary.

Muddy Terrain: A good trap for crippling, but not much else. The immobilize effect only works where it is activated, so if only one mob hits it, you'll still have the rest on you. I don't usually touch this trap, as "Frost Trap" does a better job of crippling enemies. Use it if you have to, but I honestly don't see the point, unless you're levelling up still and are only in tier 2 of your abilities.

Sharpening Stone: Very useful for world bosses and dragons, and any boss where a trap is useless. Causes bleeding for the next 5 attacks. Very powerful, but has a long cooldown at 45 seconds. Use it on the pull, and again when the cooldown is off every time, and it will be beneficial to any battle.

Quickening Zephyr: Another useful ability to pop on the pull of most mobs or bosses. Speeds up yours and your pets attacks by 50%. Especially useful with "Rapid Fire" (Longbow), but still greatly benefits your damage output. Only use it if you can't use traps, though, as it doesn't improve it that much, and the cooldown is, much like "Sharpening Stone" quite large.

Signet of Stone: This signets passive ability is good if you're doing something alone, like a tough veteran, skill point or anything where you're taking higher than average direct damage. The active ability is pretty bad, unless you need some heavy damage quickly, and aren't at risk of death any time soon. This has a massive 80 second cooldown, so use it sparingly.

Signet of the Hunt: This one should be on your bar when running around cities or maps where you aren't really at much risk, or are just interested in getting from A to B without much fighting. You can easily outrun opponents if you have this passive, use a "Call of the Wild" (Warhorn) and, if you have it as your elite, "Rampage as One". You can have a huge burst of speed that lasts a good while with all three, but this one adds a small spring in your step that is noticeable out of combat. Using the active ability in combat is pretty weak, so I would suggest only having this on if you're outside a dungeon, in a city, or at most, if you're running through a group of mobs in a dungeon to get to the next section.

Call Owl: This is an ability that I wouldn't use too often, but it comes in handy. It does about half the damage of "Hunter's Call", but adds a bleed to the target, causing it to lose even more health. This can be used for any fight, but as always, it's quite situational. I would use it in place of spike trap on any boss where traps won't work, as it has a reasonable cooldown time and does so much damage in total.

A word on Spirits:

Spirits are useful in many ways, but not exactly strong abilities. A prime example is Storm Spirit. This ability is absolutely useless to us, as it only provides a speed boost, and then when using the after effect, it isn't condition based. I would avoid this one altogether, unless you have a reason to use it.
The other spirits aren't great, but at least have conditions connected to them in some way. Sadly, these can be found on other abilities and traps, so unless traps can't be used for whatever reason, these will be useful, but otherwise, there are usually better suited abilities for our build.

Sun Spirit: Once the Sun Spirit has been summoned, allies have a chance to apply burning on hit. This could be useful if nothing else is available, but use it as a last resort. You'd be better buffing other players with your spirits than wasting time using this one. The only plus side I can see to this one is that we don't have a blind ability (although I may have missed something) other than the secondary ability provided by the Sun Spirit. "Solar Flare" provides a small blind. Nothing exciting but it works if times are desperate.

Stone Spirit: This spirit, once summoned, provides protection to allies. This can be useful in world events and in dungeon fights where direct damage is a problem. The real reason to use this one is the secondary ability. "Quicksand" is identical to "Muddy Terrain", more or less. The only difference is the immobilize doesn't only apply to the area the ability was created. Very useful if the time is right, or if you're overwhelmed, but otherwise, the main ability of the "Stone Spirit" can be provided by other classes.

Frost Spirit: This spirit has a very helpful ability that provides extra damage to allies when summoned. The higher the damage output, the faster the fight. Always a plus. The only drawback is it doesn't really do much for us, as we don't specialise in direct damage. The active effect of this spirit is identical to "Frost Trap". Only comes in handy really on boss fights where traps won't activate or on World Bosses.

Elite Abilities

You only really need to know about the two main elite abilities for the class. Each race has their own special ones. I'm a Norn, so I have the ability to become various animals in a human-ish form. These are brilliant but not very useful for us in general.

Rampage as One: This is a brilliant ability for a Power Ranger (lol) relying on their pet and their own direct damage. I, personally, only use it to get around cities and maps faster, much like "Signet of the Hunt".

Entangle: USE THIS ONE. I cannot stress that enough. This is the ability you want to use in general. I know it doesn't work against certain bosses, but you can easily take out the adds with this and some cunningly placed traps. This has a lot going for it. It does a little damage, which is alright but nothing to shout about, but the bleed and the immobilize that accompany it are wonderful. Pop this baby and, as always, use your traps, and you can kiss any enemy in the vicinity goodbye.

This was my first draft of this build. Please message me on here, or comment, if you have any problems with it. And yes, I'm aware it's long, I'll try and trim it down.

#7865400 May 22, 2013 at 10:47 AM
3 Posts
Good Job Jin! You got good credit over there as a PVE. I'm sure it'll work with other people, Not quite to me though cuz I'm pure WvW player. I find it fun at WvW working with people accomplish something always feels good. The build of your short bow is good for 1 on 1 though so I'll keep that in mind. Thanks much keep up the good work!
Commander Gol D Roger
#7867089 May 22, 2013 at 04:42 PM
13 Posts
I have little experience in WvW, but I've PvP'd a little so I can maybe work on something sometime if I look into that more. I've only lost a couple of games, and in my first 7 games, I was MVP :P

Thanks for the comment though, very much appreciated.

Oh, and I know this is hellishly long, so I'll try and trim it a bit.
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