Rotations for dummies (PvE specific)? — Guild Wars 2 Forums

Rotations for dummies (PvE specific)?

Can someone please offer a simple explanation of what a rotation is? As I understand it, it's the order in which you press each skill... is that right? I've been to snowcrows and am just overwhelmed with their explanations. Is there a site that offers simpler options? Are rotations even necessary in PvE? I've made it through the story without any, but are fractals gonna kick my butt if I don't know mine? Thanks in advance!

Comments

  • Zelu.1692Zelu.1692 Member
    edited October 9, 2019

    In short: in order to maximise your damage output within a short time window, you need to combine your active abilities (buttons you press) in a given order to ensure that the most damage will go out in that time window. The way it works changes drastically by profession and build but essentially the order is determined by factors like:

    1) a certain skill triggers one or more buffs when you use it, so you want to use it first so the big ability you use right after benefits from said buff;
    2) certain abilities have a cooldown and usually there is a way to optimise rotation so they are available again when certain buffs are available again;
    3) in GW2 certain active skills are purely utilitarian (e.g. knockback a foe, or trigger some protection) and those are usually excluded from rotations but used only when that ability is needed, meaning you alter your rotation to fit it in (e.g. when CC is needed for a breakbar or a group Aegis is needed because of a fight ability). This is why some rotations have moments of auto-attack/Skill 1 because it does more damage than another skill that is available but is purely utilitarian

    Understanding why your rotation is like what you see on Snowcrows or some other website is very important, because it means you understand the inner logic of the profession/build. And it allows you to adapt whenever your rotation is interrupted because of mechanics or other disruptions.

    Rotations are ONLY relevant in PVE, and not in PvP and WvW where the skills you use is mostly reactive and based on countering your opponent and, when the stars align, possibly get out a burst on them. Rotations are for PVE because in PVE you face a relatively static opponent with scripted behaviour.

    The point of maximising your dmg in a small window of time is because of at least the following two aspects: 1) a boss dishes out dmg at a certain rate and if in a Fractal your group manage to nuke the boss (thanks to optimal gear and rotation) at a faster rate than the boss can kill you basically no one really needs to bother about heals or much support; 2) at given points in time bosses might do super attacks or special phases and if you manage to kill hem before that then you can entirely skip the mechanics. Other reasons as well, but basically it comes down to making the Fractal run as smooth and fast as possible for everyone so they can go walk their dog, cook dinner or do any other thing.

  • Addition: rotation are ONLY relevant in PVE, in PvP and WvW the skills you use is mostly reactive and based on countering your opponent and, when the stars align, possibly get out a burst on them. Rotations are for PVE because in PVE you face a relatively static opponent with scripted and previsible behaviour.

  • Khisanth.2948Khisanth.2948 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @PinkLotus.7618 said:
    Can someone please offer a simple explanation of what a rotation is? As I understand it, it's the order in which you press each skill... is that right? I've been to snowcrows and am just overwhelmed with their explanations. Is there a site that offers simpler options? Are rotations even necessary in PvE? I've made it through the story without any, but are fractals gonna kick my butt if I don't know mine? Thanks in advance!

    Necessary? No except maybe for raids. However even if you are using any specific rotation you should still be aware of the utility that the skills provide and in some cases a skill could be worse damage than just autoattacking so you would want to avoid using it unless you need it for some other benefit that it might provide such as CC for breakbars.

    As for fractals mostly no but the party might. You can usually tell if it is that kind of group based on their LFG ads though. Depending on the fractal and instabilities you might need to make adjustments anyway.

  • Cyninja.2954Cyninja.2954 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited October 9, 2019

    @PinkLotus.7618 said:
    Can someone please offer a simple explanation of what a rotation is? As I understand it, it's the order in which you press each skill... is that right? I've been to snowcrows and am just overwhelmed with their explanations. Is there a site that offers simpler options? Are rotations even necessary in PvE? I've made it through the story without any, but are fractals gonna kick my butt if I don't know mine? Thanks in advance!

    A rotation to be very blunt is: the order in which you have to press your skills to maximize output (most often damage).

    Slightly more detailed explenation would be:
    Rotations are based on:

    • performance of synergies and cumulative effects (some skills/effects benefit following skills and effects)
    • performance of skills (some skills do more damage than others)
    • cooldown of skills (making sure the rotation flows as smoothly as possible while maintining maximum output)
    • animation canceling (some skill have longer animations than their actual activate effect. it is possible to cancle the animation and move on to the next skill while still gaining the full effect of the used skill)
    • weapon swapping and class mechanic

    Overall rotations are used to improve damage on enemies most often in challenging content like fractal challenge modes (past T4) and raids (as well as raid challenge modes). There is never a necessity for a perfect rotation, though some players will strive to improve theirs as far as possible, honing their skills. Simply put, the more challenging the content, the more likely players are going to want good performance.

    For all other PvE content, a general knowledge of how to play your class and which skills to prioritize is helpful, but often not needed.

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