Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Guardian Overview

The guardian is a devoted fighter who calls upon powerful virtues to smite enemies and protect allies. As dangerous with a staff as he is with a mighty two-handed hammer, a true guardian is a master tactician who knows when to sacrifice his own defenses to empower his allies to achieve victory.
-from GuildWars2.com

The Guardian is a defensive and supportive profession that can augment their allies' abilities through several unique signet-like skills called Virtues, as well as several ground-targeted skills that allow the guardian greater control over a battle. Neither merely a tank nor simply a paladin, the guardian shines best while with a group of allies who can benefit from the guardian's support.

Armor
The Guardian is one of 2 soldier professions (along with the Warrior), meaning they wear heavy armor.

Weapons
Main Hand weapons available:
Mace - direct damage attacks with abilities to support and heal allies.
Sword - close-range attacks that inflict conditions in an area.
Scepter - direct damage with immobilization.
Off Hand weapons available:
Focus - conditions and heals in a wide area.
Torch - fiery magical attacks that burn foes and remove conditions.
Shield - supportive abilities to negate incoming damage.
Two-Handed weapons available:
Greatsword - sweeping close-range attacks that can inflict conditions on multiple enemies.
Hammer - direct damage abilities that can also control enemy movement.
Staff - long-range magical abilities that damage foes and heal allies.
Aquatic weapons available:
Spear - close-range skills with conditions that can hit several targets.
Trident - long-range magical effects for supporting allies.

Aegis
Aegis is a boon unique to guardians. Aegis does not stack, but will automatically block the next incoming attack. While it can be cast on allies, only guardians are able to bestow this boon through certain skills and traits. Aegis is primarily available through Virtue of Courage, as described below.

Virtues
Virtue of Justice (F1) -
Passive: Every fifth attack inflicts Burning.
Active: The next attacks of nearby allies inflict Burning.
* Disables Justice for 30 seconds.
Virtue of Resolve (F2) -
Passive: Regenerate health.
Active: Remove conditions and grant Regeneration to nearby allies.
* Disables Resolve for 60 seconds.
Virtue of Courage (F3) -
Passive: Every 40 seconds, grants Aegis, blocking the next incoming attack.
Active: Grant Aegis to nearby allies.
* Disables Courage for 90 seconds.
Symbols
Symbols function similarly to a necromancer's marks. They are placed on the ground, and can damage foes or grant boons when entered. Most symbols are weapon skills and are relatively short-lived, usually only lasting for a few seconds. For example, Symbol of Judgment heals allies and inflicts Burning on foes.

Meditations
Meditations are utility skills exclusive to guardians that manipulate existing conditions. They are largely support abilities, serving as a kind of preventative healing by removing or transferring conditions from allies. Some meditations also have a teleportation element, increasing a guardian's mobility. For example, Merciful Intervention teleports you to the ally with the lowest health and creates a healing aura around them.

Consecrations
Consecrations represent several of a guardian's support abilities. Like symbols, they can be ground-targeted, but affect a larger area. Consecrations also focus almost entirely on removing conditions and granting boons. For example, Purging Flames creates a ring of fire that inflicts Burning on foes and removes conditions from allies.

Spirit Weapons
Similar to an elementalist's conjured weapons, guardians can summon Spirit Weapons to aid in battle. Like elemental weapons, they have a certain duration. However, they are not picked up like an enviromental weapon, and will automatically attack enemies on their own. Spirit weapons cannot be targeted by enemies, and up to three such skills can be active at the same time. They each have a special ability which, when used, will dismiss the spirit weapon afterwards. For example, Hammer of Wisdom can be Commanded to knock down a foe, which then dismisses the Hammer.

Shouts
Shouts are utility skills that are unique to the soldier professions (guardians and warriors). They have an instant cast time, allowing them to be used at the same time as other skills. Shouts apply a variety of effects in a large area. For guardians, shouts are used to provide boons to allies. For example, "Hold the Line!" grants Protection and Regeneration to nearby allies.

Wards
Wards are weapon skills that are ground-targeted, similar to symbols. However, wards take a certain shape and either prevent movement or projectiles from crossing it, making them useful for controlling enemy movement or impeding ranged attacks. For example, Line of Warding draws a line in front of you that enemies cannot cross.

Tomes
Tomes are elite skills that immobilize the guardian when used. A tome grants the guardian five new abilities depending on the tome. There are two different tomes, one which grants several support abilities and one that focuses more on offensive damaging abilities.

Trait Lines
Zeal - focuses on direct damage and Symbols (increases Power and Expertise).
Radiance - focuses on conditions and Signets (increases Precision and Malice).
Valor - focuses on damage mitigation and Meditations (increases Toughness and Prowess).
Honor - focuses on boons and Symbols (increases Vitality and Compassion ).
Virtues - focuses on Virtues, Consecrations, and Tomes (increases Concentration and Willpower).

For more info on the effects of different attributes, check out this article. General information about Traits and Trait Lines can also be found here.

Complete lists of Skills and Major & Minor Traits coming soon!

By Mothyames
http://www.guildwars2journal.com/_/gw2-class-guides/guardian-guides/professions-guardian-overview-r170

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