Tuesday, 12 May 2015

Gearing my Ranger in Guild Wars 2

This last week I've been getting into the nitty gritty of end game in GW2 or at least trying to figure out what gear my Ranger should be getting. In the space of a week I managed to get two new ascended weapons from the mighty Tequatl. As I have my sword and short bow already, I opted for torch for my offhand melee and a greatbow.

Up to now, I'd preferred the shortbow and had built my build as a 'condition ranger' - a specialist at making things bleed and keeping them bleeding (and/or burning) for as long as possible, or until they drop dead. But the seemingly 'better' or at least more desired spec is the longbow hunter. Pure DPS, so I found a build and decided to give the longbow a go. I managed get into an event train in the Silverwastes ( more on that later) and ran for close to two ours with the spec. I hated it. The skills fired off way too slowly and it just didn't feel right for my little Asura. The Greatbow has gone into storage, perhaps for the Warrior, Itsemekhona, and I'll stick with my trusty shortbow.

As I now seem to be all set for weapons, I now need to focus on weapons. I have a ton of mismatched items and for some time I've been delving into the Silverwastes, a zone where you can collect Bandit Crests. These can be traded in for various things and most notably a recipe I've been trying to get in order to craft 'Sinister' armour, a set that improves condition damage, seemingly a good fit. Every time I've been to the zone it's been solo and usually only get 10-20 crests each time. As the item I needed costs 400 this was set to be a long grind. Then I happened upon a group and started following them. Next thing I know, we were flying from event to event, racking up crests and within an hour I was well over my 400 target (as well as a ton of other random loot) lots of fun, and I managed to get something I've been working on for a couple of weeks, in one session.

So now begins he grind to craft the armour set as I can only make on per day. It doesn't look like I'll be getting any ascended armour anytime soon so at least I can get a set that will help with my build.


  1. That's funny, I'm the other way around: I love the longbow on my ranger, and the shortbow just doesn't do it for me. Maybe the shortbow will be good for DPS when they fix the dot caps (I don't know when that's going to happen, I'm not really on top of the curve when it comes to GW2 - still leveling up my characters).

    I use the longbow as secondary weapon on my warrior, and it plays differently on that class. I like having it mostly for its functionality: sometimes there just are instances in which melee is not the right thing, e.g. when you're almost dead and need to keep distance for a bit, or when you're doing an event and can't get a score because there's too many (ranged) people participating that get to the mobs first.

    Good luck with the grind!

    1. Thanks for commenting, Ravanel! My warrior is in fact my four year old daughters (as seen in a previous post) so the greatbow will be less about what damage it does and more about what she wants to use to make her character look cool at any given time!

  2. I have a special fondness for my condi ranger in PvP.

    Too many people use the power ranger build, so folks expect a ranger to play keep away, do knockbacks and have a big rapid fire spike - which they then promptly dodge and close with the ranger.

    Which a condi ranger actually loves, given the shortbow range limitation and wanting to flank to do bleeds, plus close ranger axe or sword.

    You sit there, stacking a ludicrous amount of bleeds, which they clear, and you bleed again, and they clear, and you keep bleeding and they go "oh hell, why have I run out of condi clears and heals..." then they fall over. So satisfying a payoff for the patience.

    You may want to consider grabbing an exotic set of Rabid stats first (condition damage, precision, toughness) as they're probably easier/faster to obtain than Sinister.

    To me, Sinister is valuable if you're also planning to use a power-based direct damage weapon (aka anything that doesn't have a whole bunch of conditions applied when you mouse over the tooltips.) You can then basically switch over to that weapon as the situation calls for it, without losing as much direct damage as you would if completely dressed in Rabid.

    It's worth picking up a set of Berserker at some point also. Condi builds do badly in one situation - any time you've got a group of people wailing away at the same mob, aka world bosses, dungeons, the main bosses of the Silverwastes and Dry Top, etc.

    Until they get around to changing it with HoT, other peoples' condition damage stat can overwrite yours and the total bleeds on a mob only goes up to 25 stacks. It is -so- infuriating when you're sitting there alone on a mob with 18+ bleeds, doing 2k+ damage per tick, and some other fella comes along in zerker (ie. nil condition damage) but using a condition-based weapon, applies bleeds, and suddenly, the damage drops to 100-200 a tick. So now you're stuck doing almost nil direct damage and almost nil condition damage... and want to wring the other fellow's neck. :)

    Then to add salt to the wound, the game thinks that you haven't done enough damage to contribute and you get no loot from the mob. Those would be good times to go zerker and do enough damage to get your tag in.

    1. Thanks for the tips Jeromai. I'll certainly look out for the Rabid and Berserker sets. To be honest, I'm very reluctant to follow the cookie cutter that everyone else uses and I hate being corralled into playing a particular way but your advise is sound!

      Thanks for stopping by!

  3. I'm not a cookie cutter person myself, I'm more of a 'right tool for the right situation' sort. Understanding why a build is a certain way is, imo, the best way to ensure one can flexibly adapt to the situation. Many PvE meta builds are constructed for maximum dps in a group dungeon where there's four other people providing stuff that synergizes and benefits the group. They, imo, may not necessarily be the most optimal for soloing or doing open world stuff and so on.

    Hope you're having fun with GW2, lvl 80 is only the beginning. ;) and if you've any questions, feel free to aim them my way, love to help with anything that I know about.