My interest in this game is crafting builds that break away from the meta. The most recent result is this, which I've not seen anyone else using (at least in EU).
This is a random assortment of stuff from Ranked/Unranked/AT over the last 2 months. Its random because I usually forget to start recording >.< So its not necessarily all the best bits, its just stuff.
This post is about letting people know "hey, this thing exists, it works, you can use it", not about bragging (because I'm a pretty mediocre player), but for those who need to see "credentials", I have used this build for 100% of the last season, stayed pretty consistently in Plat-3, and finished at rank 42 (this is shown in the video). Not that top-50 means what it maybe once did, but what I'm saying is that this build has been tried and tested against players in EU P2/P3/Leg, and has been proven to be viable (at least in Ranked PvP). It is not a joke build that only works against Silvers.
The build is this:
The aim is to fulfill multiple roles at once. It is part-support, part-team-nuker, part-duelist. The idea is that if you bring 60% of the support of a dedicated healer, and 60% of the damage of a dedicated DPS, then you're bringing 120% of either of those alone. I honestly find this easier to queue with, since you're not dependent on your team-mates in the same way as you are on full-support. You can make plays in team-fights, you can take 1v1s, and you can still keep your necro alive, but you're not chained to them.
So the build has:
- Good team support. It doesn't have the same healing output as full Menders, but it still provides the same stability, aegis, protection, cleanses, and the healing isn't terrible.
- Good AoE damage. With Permeating Wrath and stacking symbols, you can easily get 20+ stacks of burning going in a team-fight, even without Radiance traits, Torch, Purging Flames, etc.
- Good duelist. Honestly, I was surprised at how good this thing is at dueling. I'll list my experience with matchups further down, but it beats alot of meta builds 1v1.
- No ability to escape a fight. If you don't read the map properly, and get caught in a 1v3, you're dead.
- No invulns, evades, blinks etc. In a 4v4, if all 4 enemy focus you, it can be difficult to not insta-die if your team aren't on the ball with counter-pressure
- Endless, endless crying from team-mates about "Y NO HEEL"
Play-style, the build centers around Permeating Wrath. The key to this is to maximize how many times you hit. It doesn't matter much how hard those hits are, just that there's alot. Symbols help with making lots of hits, as does axe #1. Part of what makes the build viable right now is that we're in a power meta and most people aren't running much cleanse. It was alot tougher to play when spellbreakers were running FC-resistance and holos were running protection-conversion.
I'd be interested to see if there are more competent players than me who can make this work at legendary/mAT level.
On a side-note, this build is 100% not viable in WvW. Permeating Wrath trait is nerfed 50%, and since there are no capture-points, its much harder to force fights inside your symbols.
1v1 Matchups (FB Win / Lose)
- Spellbreaker - 100 / 0 - Spellbreaker can literally do nothing. I have not lost a single 1v1 to spellbreaker all season.
- Berserker - 90 / 10 - Berserker can occasionally fluke a 1-shot
- Core Guard - 80 / 20 - If you do everything right they can't win. Just don't fall asleep.
- Herald (Power) - 60 / 40 - Herald is weak to Condi, but, FB is weak to Herald. Usually close.
- Herald (Hybrid) - 30 / 70 - The hybrid herald build, I'm not sure if its actually a counter, or if its just the only people I see playing this are really good players.
- Sic'Em Soulbeast - 80 / 20 - Easy win provided you don't get 1-shot out of stealth.
- Boonbeast - 40 / 60 - Boonbeast will probably win eventually, unless you can force them to screw up quite bad.
- Holosmith - 70 / 30 - I tend to win, but its not guaranteed. Not sure if this is just that there are alot of bad Holos out there.
- Scrapper - Stalemate - Yawn
- Thief - 80 / 20 - Nasty if they +1, but not an issue in a straight 1v1
- Deadeye - 40 / 60 - Difficult, can never get close enough to finish them, so they can retry until they get you
- Mirage - 50 / 50 - Before mirage nerfs this was a guarunteed loss. Now its still difficult, but can be won. Reason its hard is all the clones eating up your Aegis.
- Chrono - 30 / 70 - The Chrono really has to screw up to lose.
- Sword Weaver - Stalemate - Be careful though, the burning they can put out can definitely kill if you don't manage cooldowns properly.
- FA Ele - 80 / 20 - Lol, no.
- Scourge - 30 / 70 - Nasty, they can continually cleanse burns, or throw them back in your face.
- Reaper - 70 / 30 - Fairly straight forward, as long as you don't get 1-shot by the spin-to-win