First impressions of Elementalist's elit specs: not quite what I would expect. Advice needed. — Guild Wars 2 Forums

First impressions of Elementalist's elit specs: not quite what I would expect. Advice needed.

MoriMoriMori.5349MoriMoriMori.5349 Member ✭✭✭
edited February 11, 2019 in Elementalist

First of all, I know that profession has issues, I've seen the big discussion on this board. So, I expected Ele's elite specs be not on par with a lot of other elites, but still, I expected some serious boost, comparing to core ele.

A bit of history. I've been playing as d/d from around lv 15, had tons of fun with this weapon setup, and never used other weapons at all, except for a brief time, to be aware how they work. I didn't like staff right away (too slow, too static, with those huge delays on many skills.. meh, not my cup of tea); scepeter / dagger was a bit more fun, but still seemed subpar to d/d I like s much. D/d gives you so much dynamics and tactical options, allowing engage and disengage into/from fights easily, and those extremely satisfying moments when you jump right into a crowd, drop everybody on the ground and shred them to pieces with Churning Earth - I just can't have enough of this mayhem B)

I arrived to Crystal Desert as just-turned-80lv core Ele, anticipating how soon I'll gather enough hero points and will try out those elites specs. It was quite hard landing, at first, I died a lot, still had tons of fun, I had to review my gear and completely re-huffle my upgrades. I quickly adapted. My first encounter with Sand Shark was and epic 10 minutes battle in which I even had to brandish my FGS. Now I eat those sharks on breakfast with just my regular weapon skills (still d/d). Hydras seemed like absolutely non-solo content - now they are still hard, but I've already killed 3 of them solo too. Genies are still hard piece of kitten, can only reliably kill the earth one, for some reason; a couple of times I almost dropped Water and Air genies, but those are really something. And I'm still playing as core Ele, with mostly exotic gear (some rare pieces) - that's where the issue starts.

My first biggest disappointment was the Weaver - bc it was the elite I thought I'll be playing as, and had high expectations of this one. It immediately got obvious to me that the way weaving is implement as of now is totally incompatible with d/d stile I love so much. In a nutshell, as a low-armored, low-hp close-range caster, you absolutely need access to your mobility and crowd control skills within a second. And access to all those skills (mobility: Air-4, Earth-3, Fire-3; crowd-control: Air-5, Air-3, Earth-4) is hindered by extremely long delays, as when you switch to the element you need, all of them are now overlapped either with dual-attack on 3, or with skills of "off-hand attunement", and you need to switch it twice to just get there - and Weaver has increased attunement switch cooldown, to boot. That results in situation when you need to wait a few seconds before you'll be able to use your core survival skills, what is in most cases just fatal.

I also didn't like Sword too much, it's too.. straightforward (well, I guess you could expect it from sword :) ), too boring. Just do damage, cast some simple defense skills, it's not even close to fun I get from d/d setup. Mobility is mediocre, it's less dynamic than d/d, less crowd-control potential, more pure dps-dealing weapon. It's okay, but it now appears to me Anet just built the whole spec around the Sword, the other weapons are just so sub-par to it you can't even seriously consider them an option (that's not even accounting for issues with d/d setup in particular I mentioned above)

So, my last hope was the Tempest. It seemed quite promising first, no strange changes to attunements switching, nothing forces you to really use the Horn. Seemed like it would be the same core d/d ele I like so much, but with additional potential, when you need it. Sounded like a lot of fun. Boy I was wrong...

Issues got apparent from the first moment I tried it out in combat against mobs in Crystal Desert, the same mobs I had been beating quite easy with my core d/d Ele until then. For reference, as a core Ele, I spec Fire and Earth, and add Water into elite spec slot for sustain; I also have Sigil granting me endurance refill on kill, and armor runes granting me 50% endurance refill on using Heal skill; in Heal skill slot I have skill which heals me on each cast. So, shortly, to survive I dodge a lot, and allow Soothing mist and the Heal skill do its passive part, while occasionally use Heal and water weapon skills to heal actively. This gives me enough sustain to either kill PoF things solo, or survive in massive brawls of group events. When it gets too hot, I just brandish my FGS and start spinning non-stop like a madman (it gives you evade via attack-3) :D Works fine almost all the time.

So, I put Tempest instead of Water into elite spec slot, set a few traits (I didn't have full set of traits unlocked yet, only half of them) - and got murdered viciously, then again and again. First I thought that may be I'm just tired and can't play that well anymore - because the elite spec clearly felt like much more glassy then my core ele with Water in elite slot. I tried again and again, and I started to realize how much sustain actually Water had been providing me all this time. Tempest elite spec just wasn't good enough to substitute it on itself.

There were issues with those overloads too. Effectively, each time I started an overload, I was turned into a sitting duck. The horde of mobs attacking me started to punch insane dps into me, and I couldn't dodge as it would have interrupted overload. My initial idea that water overload will make up for now missing Water spec in terms of sustain was shattered immediately - whatever it healed for me, was immediately taken away again by mobs attacking me at the same time. That's because as a core ele I would never really be just running around healing yourself for 4 seconds straight, I would constantly dodging, allowing Soothing mist do the trick and occasionally casting a healing skill or two, then dodge again, or use mobility skill to gain some distance from enemies, then heal again, then re-engage. And you can't do this with overloads, obviously, you just need to slowly run around, taking all the beating.

Now, I understand that Tempest will have more traits increasing sustain later, I saw the one which gives you stability (must-have, imo), and the one which gives you protection (with increased efficiency) - but I now really doubt whether this will be enough to resolve all those issues above. I also saw the Elemental Bastion final trait, but it seemed like really sub-par to what Water spec can offer, very situational, so not something you can rely upon.

So, does it mean that to get my core ele sustain back as a Tempest, I must still spec Water anyway? Because in such case it completely breaks my build, and leaves me with a crippled combat mage which only spec one dps-dealing element and gets greatly decreased efficiency overall, comparing to a freaking core profession! If I ditch Earth, I lose some sustain, tons of dps, my main crowd control and mobility skills will be less efficient, my Healing signet is totally broken (won't heal me passively when on cooldown), same for Signet of Fire I use to make up for the lack of range, and as an additional source of dps (as Earth gives increased recharge of signets, and it delivers tons of burning damage per cast up to 1200 range). If I ditch Fire, I just lose tons of offensive capability as well, and my main tool of dealing with serious threats - FGS - lose effectiveness as well.

So I'm literally facing a situation where I have better sustain and combat value as a basic profession, then one of the elites.

What am I missing? Is it possible to create a d/d Tempest build which won't be sub-par to the core Ele d/d build in any way?

Comments

  • Megametzler.5729Megametzler.5729 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited February 11, 2019

    Well, I do kind of agree: With both of the elites you have some advantages and some disadvantages. They are not just straight up upgrades like many other elites - which is how it should be in the first place! I like this, you can make actual decisions on what you want to achieve and how you want to play.

    I also started with D/D (mostly) and played it a lot in classic. However, let me write a little bout the two elites and how I came to like them both:

    Tempest indeed trades the quick attunement switching for longer stays and then those overloads. I also agree you then just overload a little and... well, can't really do much. I actually liked it most with scepter/warhorn - you had incredible might and fury generation, all AoE, and sweet burst. Warhorn also has some nice damage and CC skills and scepter can be used not only for stacking with fire, but during air overload you can cast the instand damage and blinds. It still feels slower - slower than D/D, slower than weaver. But it is versatile, you can range, you can (have to, often) kite against multiple enemies.
    I used fire/arcane/tempest, usually, and mostly offensive skills. Air is great too for lots of air overloads. You can kill a lot solo, if you remember to use middle range - kiting, but remaining near enough for your overloads to hit.

    Weaver is very different. I actually like sword - not all of it, all the AAs are indeed very similar and boring, dagger had a lot more thought through mechanics here. I play it usually as a power/condi hybrid. The problem is: It has only close range attacks, even more so than D/D, most dagger skills actually have a higher range than sword. So you are sometimes more limited if you can't leave fights and equip other weapons, something I almost never had to do with tempest (sometimes focus for more projectile hate and general defense). It plays a lot quicker, I almost never use more than one AA chain, while with D/D air AA always was a great source of sheer
    Here I also use fire/arcane with weaver. I initially thought I could swap from fight to fight more easily - AoE and range with tempest, just smashing big bosses with weaver -, but because I changed my gear for weaver, it is actually not that easy anymore.

    In general:
    1. I do think the elites offer different playstyles from core, which is in general a good thing. Tempest and weaver both offer a nice change, many new skills and complexity, and I am having great fun with it.
    2. Dagger is definitely not optimized for weaver unfortunately. The #3 skills are extremely important and you have to use unravel to use them effectively. I hate this, so I don't use dagger with weaver. I hope they change this, but I doubt it since they adjusted unravel recently (in a very uninspired way, I think).
    3. Weaver with sword is basically an upgraded version of D/D. Dual skills are great and look beautiful. It is more challenging though, to get used to these lots of skills and the locked defense - sword does offer some on #2 skills though, so quickly accessible. Mobility can be an issue, but usually isn't in PvE I feel.
    4. Tempest is a little simplificaton indeed. It plays slower, not with the same fluidity as the other two - but that can also be relaxing. And the AoE damage is still nice and can be great fun!

    I think you just have to improve some gear and then keep playing both specs for a little while longer, changing weapons and I am very sure you will find fun builds with both specs - or, all three if you count core in too. :smile: Tempest is easier to get into, you just need to learn kiting and when and how to burst mobs, even lots of veterans down 100-0 completely in seconds. Weaver is more challenging, since you have to get used to no access to #4 and 5 skills and the various dual skills. But it also can be great fun!

    Give it a chance! Both play very differently and need time to get used to them. And if you find core D/D to be most fun - stick to it! That is still the most important part as long as you don't look for raids and stuff.

    If you want more specific answers about PVP, I would love to help. I am absolutely not an expert for fractals and raids.^^

  • steki.1478steki.1478 Member ✭✭✭✭

    D/d is by far the worst combination on both elite specs and is much better when played as core, so you're not wrong much on that. It's a mobile and flexible build and none of elite spec mechanics are helping, in fact they are just making it a lot slower. However, there are certain things than can make it more enjoyable.

    First thing you need to know that if you're playing with scepter or dagger main hand and focusing on direct damage, air spec is definitely your best choice (in pve at least). Fresh air is what's making tempest one of the most bursty builds in pve (using warhorn though, but d/d is bursty in open world as well) and lightning rod can provide good nuke when paired with weaver due to access to lots of CC (FA is also decent on d/d weaver).

    Second thing you need to know about pve ele is that if you're not playing pure condi build, earth spec will be completely useless. Even if you're some kind of hybrid, earth is just not worth it. Arcane will provide lots of boons to help with sustain, defense and damage (and its sustain is usually enough for you not to take even water spec once you learn to position and combo your skills better).

    I know it sucks, but unravel utility skill makes d/d weaver much more enjoyable (read playable) since you can link burst/cc/mobility/combo skills quite well. However, I'd try with tempest first since weaver can be quite complex and pointless if you havent mastered ele.

    FA tempest is quite straight forward - overload air>fire burst (basically 2-5 in any order, but 5 after you've inflicted burning)>back to air>wait for overload to get ready by using auto attacks>repeat. CC, mobility and heals are situational, but should happen after you've overloaded air (not during waiting period). It works the same on any non-staff weapon combo. You can usually throw in lightning hammer (skill 4 and autos) or icebow (3,4 and eventually 2) during waiting period for extra burst (or situational CC).

  • Thanks, guys, really :) For spending your time actually reading my enormous wall of text, and coming up with thoughtful suggestions. A lot of things to think over, it seems. I'll try to experiment a bit more, then will share my thoughts again. Thanks a bunch!

  • MoriMoriMori.5349MoriMoriMori.5349 Member ✭✭✭
    edited February 12, 2019

    @steki.1478 said:
    First thing you need to know that if you're playing with scepter or dagger main hand and focusing on direct damage, air spec is definitely your best choice (in pve at least). Fresh air is what's making tempest one of the most bursty builds in pve (using warhorn though, but d/d is bursty in open world as well) and lightning rod can provide good nuke when paired with weaver due to access to lots of CC (FA is also decent on d/d weaver).
    Second thing you need to know about pve ele is that if you're not playing pure condi build, earth spec will be completely useless. Even if you're some kind of hybrid, earth is just not worth it. Arcane will provide lots of boons to help with sustain, defense and damage (and its sustain is usually enough for you not to take even water spec once you learn to position and combo your skills better).

    I actually started playing with a direct direct damage power/precision/ferocity build, and then hybrided it into more condi later (threw in some vit and healing power too, through gear, I have 15k hp as of now on my core ele). So far, Earth was one of my most efficient ways to tear apart things, usually I would start in Fire, put some burning, stack up some might (have the trait which gives you might for every skill used while you are attuned to fire), then right after deploying Fire Field with dagger 3 or 4 skills, I would go to Earth, hit 4 to trigger the field and drop everything not immune to the ground to prepare for that long cast of Churning Earth. If done quick enough, the latter with still drop on the field as well, providing even more might. Churning Earth deals around 9k base dmg in total for me atm, not accounting for the Might stack, and power stack I accumulate due to sigil in my dagger. Doesn't look so bad, I believe.

    Earth also gives you some sustain (more toughness and stone armor when your hp goes below threshold, plust stability and reduced recharge of the Earth weapon skills, helps you to move around faster), and utility as well (the fact that you can use your healing signet for a direct hp restoration, and still retain its passive bonus healing you with each cast you do, lower cooldowns on signets in general).

    The other benefit which comes with a more condi build like this is that you don't need to constantly face your enemy to deal damage. You can burst in a rapid sequence of attacks, dodge away, heal a bit, use some ranged option (Ice bow/FGS) - while condi stacks killing them. For PvE it works just fine. In contrary, if I would resort to using more direct-damage approach, like what Air offers, you would need to actually bash them all the time, taking hits from them in return.

    Regarding using Arcane - I just couldn't find a good use for it, so far. It seems too broad and general, or too situational, when compared to clear and strong benefits Water spec offers you, in terms of sustain.

  • I actually missed Unravel option completely, and it really seems like something that could help with at least one of the issues. But it still seems to me that Weaver will face even more issues with sustain than Tempest do if played as d/d. The elite spec itself doesn't have that much sustain built into it at all. It has this sweet huge vit bonus - but only for sword weavers (shame on you, Anet!)

    Could you also perhaps elaborate on this one:

    @Megametzler.5729 said:
    you have to use unravel to use them effectively. I hate this, so I don't use dagger with weaver. I hope they change this, but I doubt it since they adjusted unravel recently (in a very uninspired way, I think)

    What was the change, and why it was bad for d/d?

  • MoriMoriMori.5349MoriMoriMori.5349 Member ✭✭✭
    edited February 12, 2019

    I've re-viewed Arcane spec traits one more time, and I still fail to see how it's comparable to Water in terms of sustain, or to any other spec in any terms, at all. It really seems like an assortment of left-over traits they didn't know where to put. Some boon generation tied to attuenement switch (so you won't stack more than 4-5 might this way anyway, even when deliberately switching attunements just for that - and in real combat you won't be switching to another one right away, so it will realistically be 2-3 instead), some healing tied to it also (quite weak anyway). "Elemental Attunement" would be nice if it would affect you as well - but it doesn't seem to, it's only for allies - again, so cheap Anet, so cheap. There is also some boons generation and protection when hp below threshold, but that's very situational, not very useful, not something you would trade direct, clear sustain benefit water gives you, for example. Then you have "Bountiful power" , which is not clear to me. It says "2% for each boon on you" - but does that mean that 25 stacks of Might will give you 50%? I doubt it, more like it will give you just 2%, and 2% for, say, vigor, if you have it too. So it's mostly useful only if you are a part of group where you'll have may be 5 boons on you, may be even 10, if it's a big group. In the former case, it doesn't seem like a boost at all, definitely not something you would trade any other spec for. The later.. well, may be in big group aiming for high-lv content it actually worth it. But not in every-day PvE activity, certainly.

  • MoriMoriMori.5349MoriMoriMori.5349 Member ✭✭✭
    edited February 12, 2019

    I feel like stances really should be a "free give-away" kind of mechanics for Weaver. They shouldn't take an utility slot, instead go to its own slot which is triggered by a separate hotkey. At least, you should get one stance like this (may be except for the last, elite skill stance, which is not that useful anyway, imo), and should be allowed to employ more stances by putting those extra ones into utility slots, if you wish.

  • Nephalem.8921Nephalem.8921 Member ✭✭✭

    D/d celestiel core ele has way higher sustain than weaver or tempest. And that's ok because they offer something D/d doesn't have.
    Huge aoe effects and selfbuffs with tempest and insane dps on weaver.
    Almost all damage modifiers are multiplicative. You don't seem to use many and thats why you lose out on something like 100% extra damage in modifiers.
    Thats where weaver shines. You summed it up pretty great. All it offers is damage and that's almost right. The entire traitline just amplifies your damage to ludicrous levels. But you have to plan ahead in exchange. Can't access all defensive weapon abilities immediately. Sword + dagger has almost the same mobility d/d has but sword also comes with build in evades like earth 2. Weaver feels best with Sword + x or staff though. Scepter weaver is or was more of a pvp thing. Dagger mainhand weaver just isn't that great.
    Weaver is not that easy to learn because of the 6 extra abilities you get per mainhand weapon and the foresighted gameplay.
    Tempest is just a straight upgrade to dagger ele in pve. You have to play it with fresh air though. Air overload range is huge and it stacks vuln aswell. You can move during overloads. Air overload allows easy kiting potential while dealing massive damage. You could play with strength runes + strength sigil if you don't raid. That way you would have 15-20 might just from auto attacking constantly aswell. Not sure if you are playing your d/d build without fresh air or with it because it is kind of needed on a core dagger build aswell. All the sustain you have in your build comes also at the cost of damage which means mobs last longer and deal more damage to you. The optimal d/d playstyle is also quite boring compared to weaver and tempest. All the things you mentioned are nice to have but are also worse than air auto attack. So all you do when playing d/d optimally is doing a standard might stack rotation with air auto attacks as filler and not useing attacks like fire 2 or water 2 at all. Tempest can do the same while also offering warhorn which is just stronger than dagger off hand and offering air overload.
    And because you mentioned the hydras and djinns: A proper played weaver kills them so fast that they don't have the chance to fight back but thats not something a beginner will be able to do immediately.

  • steki.1478steki.1478 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @MoriMoriMori.5349 said:

    @steki.1478 said:
    First thing you need to know that if you're playing with scepter or dagger main hand and focusing on direct damage, air spec is definitely your best choice (in pve at least). Fresh air is what's making tempest one of the most bursty builds in pve (using warhorn though, but d/d is bursty in open world as well) and lightning rod can provide good nuke when paired with weaver due to access to lots of CC (FA is also decent on d/d weaver).
    Second thing you need to know about pve ele is that if you're not playing pure condi build, earth spec will be completely useless. Even if you're some kind of hybrid, earth is just not worth it. Arcane will provide lots of boons to help with sustain, defense and damage (and its sustain is usually enough for you not to take even water spec once you learn to position and combo your skills better).

    I actually started playing with a direct direct damage power/precision/ferocity build, and then hybrided it into more condi later (threw in some vit and healing power too, through gear, I have 15k hp as of now on my core ele). So far, Earth was one of my most efficient ways to tear apart things, usually I would start in Fire, put some burning, stack up some might (have the trait which gives you might for every skill used while you are attuned to fire), then right after deploying Fire Field with dagger 3 or 4 skills, I would go to Earth, hit 4 to trigger the field and drop everything not immune to the ground to prepare for that long cast of Churning Earth. If done quick enough, the latter with still drop on the field as well, providing even more might. Churning Earth deals around 9k base dmg in total for me atm, not accounting for the Might stack, and power stack I accumulate due to sigil in my dagger. Doesn't look so bad, I believe.

    Earth also gives you some sustain (more toughness and stone armor when your hp goes below threshold, plust stability and reduced recharge of the Earth weapon skills, helps you to move around faster), and utility as well (the fact that you can use your healing signet for a direct hp restoration, and still retain its passive bonus healing you with each cast you do, lower cooldowns on signets in general).

    The other benefit which comes with a more condi build like this is that you don't need to constantly face your enemy to deal damage. You can burst in a rapid sequence of attacks, dodge away, heal a bit, use some ranged option (Ice bow/FGS) - while condi stacks killing them. For PvE it works just fine. In contrary, if I would resort to using more direct-damage approach, like what Air offers, you would need to actually bash them all the time, taking hits from them in return.

    Regarding using Arcane - I just couldn't find a good use for it, so far. It seems too broad and general, or too situational, when compared to clear and strong benefits Water spec offers you, in terms of sustain.

    The thing is, if you do high enough burst damage you don't need that extra defense/sustain/condi ticks. Sure water traits will give you the best heals to keep you near full HP, but arcane can easily keep you above 50% which is good enough. Arcane shield trait is pretty much better than whole earth spec in pve since you rarely require all that passive defense, having protection on demand and shield proc is a lot more reliable. Elemental attunement also procs on you, not just allies so arcane is pretty much the only way to get access to lots of boons. Not to mention that you can trait vigor and get completely different rune set to help you with more damage.

    You don't need to bash anything constantly if you just burst it down and you can't do that when half of your build is focused on defense. It all comes from experience, positioning and better skill rotations.

  • MoriMoriMori.5349MoriMoriMori.5349 Member ✭✭✭
    edited February 12, 2019

    @steki.1478 said:
    You don't need to bash anything constantly if you just burst it down and you can't do that when half of your build is focused on defense. It all comes from experience, positioning and better skill rotations.

    Well, there is another side of this coin too.. It turns gameplay into "win or lose" kind of gamble I can't say I'm very fond of. If you've assessed situation just right and didn't make any mistakes - you win. Otherwise you're often dead before you can even react. That's the same for all those "glass cannon" builds. Can't say I like it very much. Even if you win, you don't really feel like it, you didn't even had time to enjoy the game, it happens too fast. If you know what I'm saying. The phase during which you actually enjoy combat - the game itself - becomes shorter, and everything turns into the so-called "real spaceship combat" - unlike how it's presented in movies, it's more like a volley or two to a point on your radar you can't really see with a naked eye due to ridiculous distances between you, and either you or the other guy is dead. Where is enjoyment here? :) After all, it's all about gameplay, or why bother and waste your time at all? Creating good, effective builds with high dps is okay part of gameplay, but (at least for me), it's not enough, on itself.

    It's the same kind of issue I have with what @Nephalem.8921 suggested before. He actually summed it quite exactly - playing a d/d efficiently is quite boring. I would even dare to say playing anything efficiently is :) Camping just one of the 4 attunements, using others to just build up Might, reducing your tactical options to just auto-attack in Air and its overload - It just starts to feel like any other regular profession in the stack, and that's not why I chose Ele in the first place (a versatile caster, and it surely felt as such to me for a while). That's the kind of gameplay which most likely will make me drop the game, in the end. I really hope there is still way to make a more or less efficient build which is still fun to play.

    @steki.1478 said:
    Elemental attunement also procs on you, not just allies

    Strange, I tested earlier today, and it didn't work like that for me. When I was switching attunements, I only saw 1 stack of might coming from the very first minor trait appearing. Unless, ofc, it's "combat only" kind of trait and its description doesn't mention this fact.

  • Kitten.. You are quite correct, @steki.1478 , it's indeed applied to you as well. Was I too sleepy earlier and forgot to enable the trait when testing? Dunno, but I remember I was quite sure it's not being applied, for some reason.

  • Auburner.6945Auburner.6945 Member ✭✭✭
    edited February 12, 2019

    I started on weaver first as an e-spec, I was messing up everything. I had issues figuring out which is main hand and which is off. I had to switch back to core ele a lot because I just couldn't learn weaver. Since I bought PoF first, I had to force myself into playing it somehow. I had to watch some PvP matches on youtube, to try and understand the rotations and although I have other games to care about that are mainly PvP, I kind of forced myself to go into some unranked matches to try out what I have learnt. I was running a build that had healing power and toughness so I could play weaver to its fullest. After a while I just went full zerk stats and learnt the sword and staff weaver PvE rotations, to learn how I can max out the burst (although I was rotating without using utilities because that's an overkill). For fights where a burst hit isn't enough, you need to start as Air/Earth on sw/d so you can have access to your cc full potential, Air 2 and dual attack + Earth 4, then switch to full Air or Fire/Air and use the Fire abilities and dual attack, then knockdown your foe with Air 5 and gap close with Air 4, and other rotations to use. Weaver isn't that easy to handle at first and Tempest would have been better to sart with, but after learning weaver, it's so much fun. Try to learn a few rotations in duel situations and to learn damaging rotations so you know what you're doing, after that everything will start to clear up and you'll be able to find your favorite playstyle. Most things die before switching attunements, so going for damage is still safe if you can utilize the full burst. On weaver though, don't feel scared that that that much of getting downed, I get downed while Fire Storm, Primordial Stance are on and some condis are already on a 30% hp target. Though calculate each situation because you may still die, which comes from encountering.

    For tempest, after playing weaver I couldn't enjoy tempest but I learnt how to play it, mostly for fractals/events where there is no one who can tank, thus I go for Tempest to aid the allies with the boons and extra damage from overloads. Although I still pick weaver over Tempest, but there are situations where Tempest would prevent the many fallen allies and thus finish the event faster.

    I am kind of with you that e-specs on ele don't feel that much of a change. Weaver has probably one of the worst trait lines in the game, it didn't address ele's squishiness and weaver's melee range, or even the dual attuning except once (Elemental Polyphony). Even Master's Fortitude trait when it's already useless on sword, it still needs the sword to have an impact. The class itself can't utilize passive defense unless it's broken or tankiness because in the core, it has to activate its defense to survive, which the weaver line failed to, although PoF bounties (weaver release) have some restrictions with which weaver can do nothing but pop their FGS cooldown or become a reviver, the issue of weaver still exists that its trait line provides almost no sustain either as a DPS or bunker.

    For tempest, I didn't like having other overloads kind of locked for me except Air overload because of Fresh Air. Using other overloads is a waste of attunement and less skill use. Tempest trait line though is far way superior to weaver's, it can almost carry its own, if it wasn't for Powerful Aura maybe. The cast times on the overloads as you mentioned, is almost as of Meteor Shower, that's why you can move casting them and have access to one stack of stability which works fine on most PvE encounters (except djinns, they have a better AI somehow and a cancerous kit with sick damage). Tempest makes things easier though when it's PvE, but its issues are easier to fix than weaver issues.

    I liked core d/d, and would have loved some of its dual attacks on dagger to be on the sword instead but sword is still fun.

    You need to just give yourself the time to get the feel of both specs and I almost guarantee you that even weaver dual attuning would happen without even thinking once you have memorized its skills and have been through encounters.

    Hope you find the e-specs fun, and if core d/d still makes it more fun, stick to it.

    Buff Elementalist!!! REEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!

  • Megametzler.5729Megametzler.5729 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @MoriMoriMori.5349 said:
    I actually missed Unravel option completely, and it really seems like something that could help with at least one of the issues. But it still seems to me that Weaver will face even more issues with sustain than Tempest do if played as d/d. The elite spec itself doesn't have that much sustain built into it at all. It has this sweet huge vit bonus - but only for sword weavers (shame on you, Anet!)

    Could you also perhaps elaborate on this one:

    @Megametzler.5729 said:
    you have to use unravel to use them effectively. I hate this, so I don't use dagger with weaver. I hope they change this, but I doubt it since they adjusted unravel recently (in a very uninspired way, I think)

    What was the change, and why it was bad for d/d?

    Totally agree with the weird restriction on the vitality bonus. :wink:

    Unravel was basically buffed. It now resets attunements and grants nice buffs. You still can only swap like... twice I think during it's duration and it has a 25s CD, so I still think it is awkward to use and should be changed. It was bad and still is suboptimal for dagger weaver, because important skills are on the #3 - on actually all attunements. Even with Unravel, the access is kind of restricted.

    Cele works very well with weaver too, by the way. :tongue:

    @MoriMoriMori.5349 said:
    I've re-viewed Arcane spec traits one more time, and I still fail to see how it's comparable to Water in terms of sustain, or to any other spec in any terms, at all. (...)

    Arcane is quite nice for rounding up. You can improve some offensive arcane skills, you have that oh-kitten-shield or buffs - you can adjust to several situations. And, of course, all those little buffs flying around. It used to be better with fury though. :wink:

    @MoriMoriMori.5349 said:
    I feel like stances really should be a "free give-away" kind of mechanics for Weaver. (...)

    A lot of eles wished for Unravel to be an in-build mechanic, yes. Me too, actually. But I fear we will not get that. (Like, for example, reduce the CD of the current attunement for double attuning to GCD or F5 or whatever.)

    The rest of the stances are okayish, I think, the heal and the barrier one are a little underwhelming, but the others see lots of use especially in PVP and WvW.

  • Fye.7594Fye.7594 Member ✭✭
    edited February 12, 2019

    I will suggest a Condi Heal Tempest build, just so you can see the sustain potential of Tempest (without Water traits):

    Gear: Apothecary trinkets, Shaman armor with Balthazar runes, Dire Scepter/Warhorn with Smoldering + Bursting sigils.

    Traits:
    Fire: Burning Precision, Pyromancer's Training, Persisting Flames;
    Earth: Elemental Shielding, Strength of Stone, Diamond Skin;
    Tempest: Unstable Conduit, InvigoratingTorrents, Elemental Bastion.

    Utilities: Wash the Pain Away, Glyph of Elemental Power, Feel the Burn, Signet of Fire, Rebound.

    You can try this build with Dagger/Dagger if you wish; I prefer Scepter/Warhorn because the sustain is better, it's easier to generate boons (Might, Regeneration, Protection) and Scepter is more condi-oriented. You will basically melt the enemies with Burning, while being unkillable and kinda supportive (PvE standpoint). I managed to solo several Hero Challenges with this build. With Tempest, you really don't need Water traits for sustain.

    HOWEVER, if you find Fresh Air builds "boring", think again. The build I'm suggesting can be even more boring, because there's almost no challenge: most of the time you won't die, because you can sustain yourself indefinitely (just swap to Water or Earth).

  • Zenix.6198Zenix.6198 Member ✭✭✭

    So from what I gathered from your post, you run Fire/water/earth with adventurer runes, double signet (with Written in Stone) and FGS.
    Since you go with adventurer runes I assume you run some sort of hybrid spec instead of one thats fully dedicated to either power or condi.
    Personally I also prefer more "versatile", "jack of all trade"-kind of specs, so I can relate to some of your issues. Which is perfectly fine for Open World content btw...you can play whatever the hell you want in open world.

    Regarding tempest:

    Yes, overloads are pretty clunky. I never liked their playstyle. The only really useful one in Open World content is the air overload. Fire is too small of an area and Water overload - as you figured out yourself - isn't really good when it comes to sustained healing, but is rather a burst heal with a 4 second delay...yikes.

    Water traitline is actually better when it comes to sustain than tempest by itself. That being said....Tempest complements Water rather nicely, instead of being a substitute for it. There is quite some nice trait-synergy to be gained when you take both. Latent Stamina, Powerful Aura or Invigorating Torrents + Cleansing Aura are good reasons to pick both traitlines. But yes....your damage obviously will suffer, since Water+Tempest is a rather support oriented spec. Earth isnt bad with Tempest either. Elemental Shielding + Unstable Conduit + Hardy Conduit boost your survivability by quite a lot.

    The best thing you can do, if you want a more "offensive approach" towards tempest is picking up the Air traitline.
    Not only is there "some" synergy to be had with Zephyr's Boon, but Fresh Air will give you a massive damage boost.
    What you basically want to do, is Overload Air and swap out of Air as soon as the cast finishes. The lingering field should almost immediately proc the Fresh Air trait, thus reseting your Air attunement, which you then can overload again.
    The gameplay of Fresh Air tempest is rather, repetitive.....but also very effective nonetheless.

    Regarding Weaver:

    You are 100% right, when you say, that weaver was made specifically with Sword in mind.
    A lot of elementalist players - myself included - have already pointed out how very bad the dual attunement system makes certain weapons.
    Dagger mainhand and Focus offhand suffer most of all from the dual attunement system, since you dont get immediate access to their key abilities.

    That being said, Sword/dagger plays really nicely when using Weaver however.
    And while Sword might look "straight-forward" there is some caveat to use it effectively.

    I dont know how familiar you are with Combo-Fields and Combo-Finishers, but when you take a closer look at sword, you will see a lot of Combo-Potential.
    Water #2 leaves behind a lingering Water Field you can combo with either the leap-finishers from Fire#2 or Air#2 respectively for a leap finisher thats heals you for a good amount, or with Earth#2 for a blast finisher that gives Aoe healing.
    Same goes for the fire Field on Fire#2, which you can blast with the Earth#2 for mighstacks.
    If you like utilizing combo fields/finishers sword actually is a pretty fun weapon.

  • MoriMoriMori.5349MoriMoriMori.5349 Member ✭✭✭
    edited February 13, 2019

    @Zenix.6198 said:
    So from what I gathered from your post, you run Fire/water/earth with adventurer runes, double signet (with Written in Stone) and FGS.
    Since you go with adventurer runes I assume you run some sort of hybrid spec instead of one thats fully dedicated to either power or condi.
    Personally I also prefer more "versatile", "jack of all trade"-kind of specs, so I can relate to some of your issues. Which is perfectly fine for Open World content btw...you can play whatever the hell you want in open world.

    You are right. The reason why I'm inclined to such build archetypes is that any repetitiveness and lack of diverse experience kills all the joy for me, and I start losing motivation to play the game. So it's not even just my preference, but a primary need I can't do with.

    So, as you may already guess, this:

    @Zenix.6198 said:
    The gameplay of Fresh Air tempest is rather, repetitive.....but also very effective nonetheless.

    .. isn't really an option in my case :) If I would like to play some damage-dealing profession with simple rotations, there are tons of much better options, I believe. But I chose Ele, a "versatile caster", to have a lot of different ways to execute my play and freedom of changing my combat stile mid-way in the battle. So I think I'll keep trying finding some more or less effective builds which still makes use of most of the options your skills give you, for now.

    And regarding Weaver - I didn't mean to say it's good for nothing, really. Yes, I probably was a bit salty at first, as due to the fact it doesn't honor my favorite weapon setup it sort of failed me, despite my high expectations of this e-spec. I'm sure it has a lot of potential and its own interesting gameplay, yet for now I still would like to find some way to have a bit more of d/d experience, while also get a few new abilities e-specs offer you as well. So adapting to Tempest for now is my primary focus. I'll surely try Weaver one day, when I'll need some fresh experience.

    Thanks for your suggestions so far, I'll keep them in mind, and include them in my experiments, for sure.

  • Auburner.6945Auburner.6945 Member ✭✭✭

    If you love to go through most elements for damage or defense. I would recommend Sw/F condition weaver (Fire/Earth), you mostly rotate through Fire and Earth, but there are the dual attacks of Air/Fire, Air/Earth and Water/Earth, all are sources of condition damage. The problem you would face would mostly be learning how your damage works because it is rated high on difficulty. Otherwise, it does good damage while still being more tanky than Power Weaver.

    This build makes the solo content easier than power because of the stats from Earth line and the defensive capabilities of focus and Weave Self. While not as strong as power, it is more fun to play because any attunement combination can almost deal damage once you understand the way everything works.

    D/d is a lot of fun but sadly the dual attacks and damage potential on weaver for this weapon set is lacking. Weaver works perfect with any set that has sword on main hand which is kinda sad... the other weapons didn't get that much attention.

    Buff Elementalist!!! REEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!

  • MoriMoriMori.5349MoriMoriMori.5349 Member ✭✭✭
    edited February 13, 2019

    Just a small update.

    A kind soul let me in to Special Forces training instance today, so I spent a few hours testing different combinations of specs/traits for its sustain, using the weakest damage pulsing field it can offer (I couldn't survive even the medium field for any significant time, even in the tankiest setup I had at my disposal (without changing a my gear)). It also worth mentioning that I invested a bit more time in PoF's hero challenges, and opened more traits for Tempest, all of them except the final three (so no Elemental Bastion yet, which will also add to general sustain (not bound to a specific element) through heal triggered by Auras you apply).

    Overall, I see some sustain potential in it now (mostly through self-heal by applying different auras). Though for it to be close to core Ele with water and earth used to boost sustain, I need to add the said Water, or at least Arcane spec to equation (the later gives you the shield proccing at 50% hp, and as one of the final abilities offers you good self-heal on dodge while attuned to water, in addition to giving you some boons on switching attunements as well). Both options still seem somewhat less sturdy, comparing to the mentioned core ele build - but Elemental bastion is still not here, so it will get a bit better later. I also have an option of using that Fire trait which blinds foes you put burning on, as well, instead of the one which helps me build Might stack atm, what should enhance sustain even more, I believe. It also has good synergy with Fire overload, as due to its laughably small area you need to literally head into the middle of a mobs' stack for it to be effective. Still, losing those sweet might stacks hurts...

    Overloads on itself still puzzle me. I'm trying to get some feeling of when and how to apply them effectively. But that comes with experience, I guess. It's fun to try new things, after all. It's a pity though, that only Air has such huge damage-dealing potential, and the rest of them don't see much use. So far, it seems to me that Earth overload could be a decent safeguard ability which you use if things suddenly got nasty, as it has inbuilt stability, good protection (from range attacks including) and applies movement impairing condis too - so you can disengage from battle right after using it and heal yourself quickly, or up your downed allies while enemies are pinned down.

    Water overload seems to be the trickiest one. In solo-play, there is little sense in using it in a middle of a battle, as you'll just lose all those HP you'll heal right away due to enemies attacking you, unless you have a buddy who can attract all the agro while you'll dodge behind them, and heal both of you through overload. Either this, or you have to, again, disengage first, to build up some distance, and only then overload it.

    Also, dropping Earth spec in favor of Water or Arcane, creates issues on itself:
    1. Both damage-dealing and mobility Earth skills have their cooldowns increased
    2. Signets stop giving you passive bonuses when on cooldowns (and also see them increased) - and I use 2 of them in my build, one for Heal, and the Fire Signet, for additional burning damage I can deliver over 1200 of range (which is nice option for overall close-range build). As I'm constantly using both, this effectively means I'll lose passive heal via using my other skills.

    Don't really know how to make up for those.. I thought about using Superior Sigil of Frenzy, hoping it should somewhat mitigate it, at least for skills with shorter cooldowns (as it's a flat decrease to it per each kill, roughly each 10 seconds). So, it may speed up recharge of the said Heal skill a bit, but I really doubt this alone will make up for the loss of all those passive heals anyway. And using it means I'll have to drop one of my current sigils. One of them gives me up to 25x10 Power from kills, and dropping it will hurt too much. The other one gives me stamina recharge on kill - and also is very useful. But at least I can hope to make up for the latter via additional vigor Water or Arcane may provide to me.

  • Zenix.6198Zenix.6198 Member ✭✭✭

    in all honesty I would reccomend trying to drop written in stone.
    While it isn't a bad trait by any means, I wouldn't get hung up on it too much.
    The arcane traitline offers a great mix of offense and defense and the ~6seconds of protection you get from attuning to earth (thanks to elemental attunement) usually makes more than up for the loss in survivability from the earth traitline.

    While I dont know your exact gear setup, It sounds like you run a very tanky gear setup.
    Maybe you should try to run a more offensive setup, since survivability doesnt really matter when you obliterate mobs in just a few seconds.
    There are still lots of ways to survive on ele even on glassier build.
    Glyph of the Storms (when on Earth) for instance puts down a 10 second AoE field that pulses blind on a 1 second interval, which enables you to even stand within an enitre horde of mobs being absolutely untouchable.

  • MoriMoriMori.5349MoriMoriMori.5349 Member ✭✭✭
    edited February 13, 2019

    @Zenix.6198 , the problem with those glass-cannon/min-maxed builds is that they often become hostages to their design, forced to adhere to strict rules and limited effective rotations - or otherwise they just fall apart and die. That's what (repetitiveness, need to strictly follow some meta rotation etc) I try to avoid at all cost. Also, the very idea of building my character around goal to win fights as fast as possible, or die, is a bit off-putting to me.

    I mean, we play a game in which the main entertainment is combat, after all. Then it seams strange to me that I need to build a character which greatly reduces time I need to spend enjoying combat, reducing my tactical options in each particular combat to one or two "effective rotations", instead of increasing number of tactical options so I could choose on the fly how to proceed, depending on circumstances, what seems like much more fun to me. That just doesn't make much sense to me :) It sort of reduces your participation to a fixed sequence of actions which could be relatively easy scripted, and if your actions can be substituted with a script, then you start thinking "what am I doing here at all? why am I needed here?"

    Such approach is good for farming, I guess, giving you ability to quickly and predictably kill lots of mobs - as your goal is not to fight with them, but get over those fights asap, acquiring enough of some resource. But farming is another thing I hate and aim to get rid of it whenever humanly possible.

  • Zenix.6198Zenix.6198 Member ✭✭✭

    @MoriMoriMori.5349 Dont worry, I wasnt trying to force my way of playing the game onto you.
    Its just that....I know that new(er) players tend to build far too tanky most of the time.
    Like they run around in full soldiers gear and are barely able to kill veterans, since they simply lack the damage.

    Most of the time the choice of going over-the-top-tanky also hinders any form of self improvement, since they dont pay attention to certain mechanics, cause they know they can just facetank it anyway.

    As said, I dont want to push any "meta-builds" onto you. Just know, that it can be very beneficial to go the middle-way between damage and tankiness.

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