Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Ranger PvE Build ("Tank")

I've seen way too many rangers spec'ing like hunters with pure DPS and a LB + SB combo, and then complaining that ranger isn't diverse or fun to play. I've played a ranger since BWE1 (and GW1 if that matter's) and I now main a level 80 ranger and alt a level 58 ranger. 90% of my time is spent in PvE and dungeons specifically, I'd never make a PvP build setup just yet, as Im only rank 10 in sPvP and have probably less than 100 WvW Badges, but I do have an extensive experience in almost every path of every dungeon and I love this build.

There are 3 main parts to my survivability setup on my ranger, Evasion, Toughness and Regen.
The basic trait setup is 0 / 0 / 20 / 30 / 20. I use a Greatsword + and a longbow. (The longbow is just preference really, it gives good control in dungeons, with a knockback and AoE Cripple, I suppose a sword and dagger combo would work as well as it provides 2 more evades) And for a utilities I use Healing spring (Swoop inside the healing spring for another minor aoe heal, you can also change out HS for troll unguent if your in a more mobile fight that requires you to not stand in the healing spring) Sig. Of the Wild (ALWAYS this passive regen helps alot, I never activate the signet) then I swap the other two depending on the occasion, Protect Me is always good for more survivability, Lightning reflexes for your only stun break x.x quickening zephyr for more quickness, which helps to evade more using the GS. Or muddy terain for more CC.

A lot of people underestimate the autoattack on the greatsword, the 3rd skill in the chain provides an 'evade' to all incoming attacks. So if you can time this up with the enemies attacks, you won't even take damage.

Use actual dodging when the autoattack (powerstab) isn't in sync with the enemies attacks, and quickness to help get it more in sync. (There's a boss in CM that shoots a shotgun and 'perma-stuns', I've had my autoattack evade timed up with his shots 6-7 times in a row before having to manually dodge out of the way on many occasions, making the fight much easier for the rest of the group.

Aside from just the stat, I also use protection via my pet and and traits (listed below) so that when you cant avoid every hit (in a big group of enemies or aoe for example) you can at least be less squishy.

This is probably more important than toughness, and maybe even evade (aside from huge 1-hit kill boss attacks, definitely evade those..) With the traits I have and the heal skills rangers use and your pet, I constantly have the regen boon anytime i'm in combat.

Armor / Runes
My armor is a mix of AC + Hotw + Karma in orr, they all have the same stats.
Power, Toughness, Vitality.

I'm using 6/6 Runes of melandru for the reduced stun time, since rangers only have one stun break and I tend to not use it as much as I should. However I've been thinking about switching to runes of the dolyak.

Also with all this Toughness and vitality, my trinkets are focused on healing power (power tough healing) to get the most out of Healing spring.

General Play
The main focus with this build is to stay alive, and your pets will make up for a lot of damage that you might be sacrificing. I use a Fern wolf and a Blue moa. The Wolf and Moa are both DPS pets. Although not as great as the feline pets in terms of damage, they still pack a punch. The main thing with the pets is to keep them on passive (I'd hope thats a given for a PvE dungeon oriented build) and always use their F2 Ability when entering in combat and maintaining it. The Blue moa does an AoE protection (In addition to the prot. you get from dodge rolls via traits) and the fern wolf gives AoE Regeneration. (using the F2 ability also tells them to attack your target) Swoop into the fight first in hopes of holding the enemies attention, and use your pets F2 skills (which recharge quicker due to traits) and sit tight in your healing spring, using swoop again to create an AoE heal. Healing spring also gives you vigor (more dodges), which goes hand- in - hand with protection on a dodge roll. Also, your pets will heal for more, (another trait) which is great since both the moa (Harmonic cry, all moas have an AoE heal that you can't activate for them) and the fern wolf do heals. All the boons you get will also be shared with your pet (Just general pet survivability).

I really enjoy this build I could've gone more into it probably and had a lot of useful links and sources but the main thing is stay in melee range, use the evasion on the GS to avoid big attacks while keeping a constant heal regen going and have fun.

I'm not posting this as a 'How to be Main Tank' or anything I know that the holy trinity is broken up and I there is absolutely no sure fire way of keeping aggro in this game. This is just a setup I find very fun on my character, I love charging in first and hardly ever being downed (NEVER defeated TBH sine downed ranger is OP :P). I also decided to do this because I saw a lot of people asking for GS ranger build help, and whenever I look up ranger builds, 95% of them are all 'huntard' (excuse the rudeness) builds with 100% focus in damage with a long bow and shortbow combo bear pet, and then seeing a lot of people saying that Ranger is not a fun class to play and not diverse enough. I remember one of my favorite things about rangers in GW1 was their diversity, and I sure haven't seen them lose it in GW2. If you think the ranger is a boring class, try this out. And remember, this is the setup of a dungeon focused ranger, my PvP setup is vastly different. (Word of caution however: I'll be honost, soloing can be slow with this build, I use a berserker set of gear and weapons and cat pets if i need to solo because its incredibly slow with this setup otherwise)

By Pendylan


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