Help me find a class after years away from the game — Guild Wars 2 Forums

Help me find a class after years away from the game

Hey Everyone,
I just downloaded this game after a looong time away from it. I've completely forgotten how to play and just deleted most of my old characters as I had no idea what I was doing with any of them and a fresh start to relearn the skills/gameplay seemed like a good idea. However, I don't have a ton of time to play so I want to focus my time on one character that matches what I'm looking for most closely.

Things I want in a character:

  • Range damage - Sadly, I feel that this game's combat becomes really messy really quickly with the the debuffs/buffs/aoe spam happening everywhere so I want a class that can be effective without being in the very muck of it all. If I get hit, I at least want an idea of what is hitting me.
  • Complexity - With MMOs in general, I have to feel some kind of challenge in combat as it is the thing that you will be doing most of the time. Simple combat = meh. So I'd like something that requires my brain to be engaged in what's going on.
  • Strong Movement - I am a sucker for variety in a character's ability to move from A to B. That way, even if I am terrible at doing damage, I can at least feel like I have options to get away/confuse the opponent. Simply running/jumping/rolling doesn't cut it.
  • Surviveability - Whether it is through slipperiness or innate stats/abilities, I'd like to live for at least few seconds. Glass cannons need not apply.

Things I don't need in a character:

  • Max DPS - I've gotten over this. I don't really care about killing everything as long as I can contribute.
  • Sluggishness.

I played a lot with the mesmer/elementalist/engineer years ago so I am tempted to go that way again, but then again, I don't really know anything about the new classes/specializations so my whole understanding might be flawed. I'm looking for any opinions on class specializations that meet the above criteria. Hopefully I'll see something that I like and I can get back into this gorgeous game for a bit. Thanks!

Comments

  • Oh and I forgot, I probably won't be doing endgame stuff too much so the suggestions aren't limited to whatever the "best" is right now. I'm not super serious about raiding and I enjoy the normal level activities that this game offers - spvp, WvW, and dungeons. I just want some ideas for a spec that fits what I'm looking for.

  • steki.1478steki.1478 Member ✭✭✭✭

    Things you mentioned kind of contradict with each other. Ranged build means that you have to be glass cannon to be useful (no point of being tanky if nothing is hitting you), and at the same time it's somewhat simple to do (in an open world scenario) since there's no pressure to do anything specific, unlike in close combat.

    Mesmer (chronomancer) with greatsword and 2 swords is probably the thing you want.

    Deso's favorite FROG
    Master of afk and kiting
    The God of Pips and Gud Deeps
    Froggo himself

  • Staff ele/Weaver sounds like what you want. They can stay at max range(1200) and have a complex rotation due to no weapon swap. As far as glass goes that all depends on what gear or traits you use. If you feel your being downed too much just change some traits and stats and you’ll find yourself being able to take a bit more punishment. Also earth and water are good for support in surviving. I run my ele glass and manage to survive just fine. Just takes a bit of practice. Best of luck to you in your journey!

  • Celestial Staff ele, the mesmer mentioned already, Deadeye with Rifle, Core engi with kits (probably condi). Those four give good range options while not being boring, have good movement options and can survive well enough. Most other ranged builds won't be particularly engaging...

  • @steki.1478 said:
    Things you mentioned kind of contradict with each other. Ranged build means that you have to be glass cannon to be useful (no point of being tanky if nothing is hitting you), and at the same time it's somewhat simple to do (in an open world scenario) since there's no pressure to do anything specific, unlike in close combat.

    Mesmer (chronomancer) with greatsword and 2 swords is probably the thing you want.

    I see what you are saying in regards to range changing the dynamic a bit, so I suppose the challenge would come in avoiding damage while performing your role. So for clarity:

    • When I say I'm not looking to be a glass cannon, I mean I'd want to do more than mash damage cooldowns as they pop up until something dies. The "heavy ranged nuker" falls into this role pretty often where they don't do much but throw massive damage at you and hope you die before you notice them. This often works against low-geared players or else the particularly unaware ones, but always seems to crumble in the face of someone who knows what they are doing in pvp. So I'd like to have some defense to think about where it would make the fight more than just a race to press the kill buttons.

    ` And in regards to the simplicity of ranged, I think that effectively avoiding the threat of the melee with defensive skills/countering can be entertaining. So I guess a class with some kiting/defense capabilities (see surviveability) matters.

    Will definitely look into the chronomancer. Also as Jason mentioned the weaver, I'll look there as well. Though staff Weaver seems to be a bit one-dimensional (big slow nukes) at first glance. Will look into the different traits and surviveability for sure.

  • Torqiseknite.1380Torqiseknite.1380 Member ✭✭
    edited February 20, 2018

    Some builds that might fit your criteria in pvp/wvw:
    Fresh air ele - strong ranged burst, constant kiting with superspeed, many options for active defense/damage mitigation
    Rifle holo - high mobility/disengage using rocket boots, consistent ranged pressure with burst damage in melee, excellent stability uptime
    Power mirage - good mobility with sword leaps, very high burst potential with setup (stealth/stuns), can evade while casting skills

  • @Baptizm.7130 said:
    I played a lot with the mesmer/elementalist/engineer years ago so I am tempted to go that way again,

    This is what I was going to suggest. Since you plan on rerolling anyway I wouldn't concern yourself necessarily with how close the classes are now to the way they were last time you logged in. Just get playing.

  • ReaverKane.7598ReaverKane.7598 Member ✭✭✭✭

    Well, there's pretty much no build that actually does all those things...
    My opinion:
    If you're not doing End-game content, get a Ranger. Power (Longbow) or Condi (Shortbow), your pick.
    It's definetly the best solo class in the game for pve. Pets can tank for you (just use bears and switch them out when they get too low), it has decent mobility (more with staff druid), with pets tanking (or playing druid) it's very durable. Also it comes with it's own "pokemon" mini-game of collecting all the pets.

    Finally, Druid is pretty much a staple on End-game content (as a healer), so if you want to transition, you're half-way done.

    But it isn't the most complicated class to play (with condi you have to mind positioning more, since you'll do more bleeds if you flank or are behind the enemy).
    Sure Chrono can be tanky as well, but it's not great vs larger groups of enemies. And unlike Ranger it has to face tank.
    Ele is one of the squishier classes, and although tempest has some extra survivability. It's not only way harder to pull off if you're new, but it can be frustrating as hell.

    For me, since the game launched, Ranger has been one of my favourite classes to play. So much so that i'd use it to hunt Champions, before they even dropped proper stuff. (yes there was a long time in the game where you'd get pretty much the same drops as with regular mobs and veterans from champions)

  • Baptizm.7130Baptizm.7130 Member ✭✭
    edited February 20, 2018

    Thanks for all the input so far. Definitely bringing some specs to my attention I didn't really know existed (druid and deadeye). While I may not end up choosing them, wouldn't have even thought of them.

    Also helpful to be able to pretty much scratch out the three heavies.

  • I don’t play the heavies either. Never do in games

  • MikeL.8260MikeL.8260 Member ✭✭✭

    That criteria fit one class perfectly; Mesmer. Easy class to pick and play, hard to master and can cover everything you ask for.. ranged combat, mobility, survivability and complexity.

  • TamX.1870TamX.1870 Member ✭✭✭
    edited February 20, 2018

    @ReaverKane.7598 said:
    If you're not doing End-game content, get a Ranger. Power (Longbow) or Condi (Shortbow), your pick.
    It's definetly the best solo class in the game for pve. Pets can tank for you (just use bears and switch them out when they get too low), it has decent mobility (more with staff druid), with pets tanking (or playing druid) it's very durable. Also it comes with it's own "pokemon" mini-game of collecting all the pets.

    Hahah, true :D Just to mention, that druid-ranger is very viable in many end game content, except at the moment large scale WvW fights. As WvW roamer, it is decent. Not the best, but will get its job done. Is it sexy class? Hell no. You will get mocked to be a 'bearbow noob', or that you have 'mediocre class on mediocre player', and even worse, but if you have pragmatic mind, you don't worry those things too much.

    Finally, Druid is pretty much a staple on End-game content (as a healer), so if you want to transition, you're half-way done.

    Ah, you said it here :)

    But it isn't the most complicated class to play (with condi you have to mind positioning more, since you'll do more bleeds if you flank or are behind the enemy).
    Sure Chrono can be tanky as well, but it's not great vs larger groups of enemies. And unlike Ranger it has to face tank.
    Ele is one of the squishier classes, and although tempest has some extra survivability. It's not only way harder to pull off if you're new, but it can be frustrating as hell.

    I have currently ranger, ele, guard, thief and necro. From these, I'd suggest ranger. It is not that not other class would be viable, no, maybe the opposite. Ranger does not shine in many things, but it does get its job done. You can get a more complex class like ele later, as some classes need much more knowledge about the game to perform well.

    For me, since the game launched, Ranger has been one of my favourite classes to play. So much so that i'd use it to hunt Champions, before they even dropped proper stuff. (yes there was a long time in the game where you'd get pretty much the same drops as with regular mobs and veterans from champions)

    After all, ranger became my workhorse to the game. At the moment, yes, I need another class to large scale WvW fights (it is going to be necro or guard), but other than that, ranger is flexible class for smaller teams and soloing.

  • Baptizm.7130Baptizm.7130 Member ✭✭
    edited February 20, 2018

    It's definitely between ranger and mesmer as both classes have the potential to give me what I'm looking for. Both their specializations seem to work for what I want as well so I'll have some options later on down the road. Will probably go with ranger as I've never tried it before and both specs offer something promising (beastmode pet combo mechanics tinkering or heavy support). If it feels too simple, I know mesmer will be a solid backup.

    Appreciate all the input!

  • TamX.1870TamX.1870 Member ✭✭✭

    @Baptizm.7130 said:
    It's definitely between ranger and mesmer as both classes have the potential to give me what I'm looking for. Both their specializations seem to work for what I want as well so I'll have some options later on down the road. Will probably go with ranger as I've never tried it before and both specs offer something promising (beastmode pet combo mechanics tinkering or heavy support). If it feels too simple, I know mesmer will be a solid backup.

    Dont get it wrong, sadly ranger soulbeast does not offer much, if anything on the top of core ranger. Druid-ranger is different beast. On the other hand, even thought I dont play mesmer, they tend to say that mirage obsoletes chrono in many ways, but on the other hand I think that chrono has still some places to go. To be absolutely honest: in the end I think you dont go much wrong no matter which class you choose. I might like ranger, but I have four other classes to play, and I have played few more to see that they dont fit to me.

  • Baptizm.7130Baptizm.7130 Member ✭✭
    edited February 21, 2018

    @TamX.1870 said:

    @Baptizm.7130 said:
    It's definitely between ranger and mesmer as both classes have the potential to give me what I'm looking for. Both their specializations seem to work for what I want as well so I'll have some options later on down the road. Will probably go with ranger as I've never tried it before and both specs offer something promising (beastmode pet combo mechanics tinkering or heavy support). If it feels too simple, I know mesmer will be a solid backup.

    Dont get it wrong, sadly ranger soulbeast does not offer much, if anything on the top of core ranger. Druid-ranger is different beast.

    Yes, luckily I wouldn't want to add too much to the core ranger as it provided range damage and a decent amount of slipperiness with its sword/dagger skills. I stayed away from them earlier as they were pretty bland though and didn't offer much variety. I'm curious to see how the pet merge can enhance that basic skillset to provide more options for clever play or interesting setups. The vanilla pets didn't achieve this, but there is some potential there to do what I'm looking for with SB stances. If it doesn't work out (it doesn't seem too popular so I may be being overly optimistic here or just looking for a particular niche), druid seems pretty complete - just never tried a heavy support in this game.

    Mesmers seem to be an overall solid, complex, versatile playstyle that offers a lot of improvisation. Also, it's fun to watch people get confused by the clones sometimes.

    Also, I'm happy that hardcore progression isn't a big deal as I can pick classes based strictly on how they feel. This thread was all about narrowing down my choices to those that match best with what I'm looking for - regardless of max potential. So thanks again for all the awesome responses as I got to consider a bunch of unfamiliar specs (seriously - I wasn't even looking at ranger and gave a good amount of consideration to different ways to put a Deadeye together). I've come out with at least 4 different options that match which is much better than the alternative of playing every class on a whim - hoping it feels right.

  • TamX.1870TamX.1870 Member ✭✭✭

    @Baptizm.7130 said:
    Yes, luckily I wouldn't want to add too much to the core ranger as it provided range damage and a decent amount of slipperiness with its sword/dagger skills. I stayed away from them earlier as they were pretty bland though and didn't offer much variety. I'm curious to see how the pet merge can enhance that basic skillset to provide more options for clever play or interesting setups. The vanilla pets didn't achieve this, but there is some potential there to do what I'm looking for with SB stances. If it doesn't work out (it doesn't seem too popular so I may be being overly optimistic here or just looking for a particular niche), druid seems pretty complete - just never tried a heavy support in this game.

    Soulbeast looks promising and to some point, it is. Basically what it does it brings ranger sort of back to its core format. But it is... Well, I think it is not yet complete enough for its purpose. Druid-ranger is not as much support as you might think initially. Yes, maybe it won't burst all high damage, but it is very steady DPS & support class to play. True that in that role, its more about PvP/WvW thing, as PvE don't want rounded-up DPSer.

    @Baptizm.7130 said:
    Mesmers seem to offer an overall complex, versatile playstyle that offers a lot of improvisation. Also, it's fun to watch people get confused by the clones sometimes.

    Without playing mesmer yet, based on the opinions of other people and the encounters I have had on my ranger, I would say you can't go much wrong with mesmer, either. Might be a bit more complex class, true, but with great potential.

  • Pterikdactyl.7630Pterikdactyl.7630 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited February 21, 2018

    @Baptizm.7130 said:

    @TamX.1870 said:

    @Baptizm.7130 said:
    It's definitely between ranger and mesmer as both classes have the potential to give me what I'm looking for. Both their specializations seem to work for what I want as well so I'll have some options later on down the road. Will probably go with ranger as I've never tried it before and both specs offer something promising (beastmode pet combo mechanics tinkering or heavy support). If it feels too simple, I know mesmer will be a solid backup.

    Dont get it wrong, sadly ranger soulbeast does not offer much, if anything on the top of core ranger. Druid-ranger is different beast.

    Yes, luckily I wouldn't want to add too much to the core ranger as it provided range damage and a decent amount of slipperiness with its sword/dagger skills. I stayed away from them earlier as they were pretty bland though and didn't offer much variety. I'm curious to see how the pet merge can enhance that basic skillset to provide more options for clever play or interesting setups. The vanilla pets didn't achieve this, but there is some potential there to do what I'm looking for with SB stances. If it doesn't work out (it doesn't seem too popular so I may be being overly optimistic here or just looking for a particular niche), druid seems pretty complete - just never tried a heavy support in this game.

    Mesmers seem to be an overall solid, complex, versatile playstyle that offers a lot of improvisation. Also, it's fun to watch people get confused by the clones sometimes.

    Also, I'm happy that hardcore progression isn't a big deal as I can pick classes based strictly on how they feel. This thread was all about narrowing down my choices to those that match best with what I'm looking for - regardless of max potential. So thanks again for all the awesome responses as I got to consider a bunch of unfamiliar specs (seriously - I wasn't even looking at ranger and gave a good amount of consideration to different ways to put a Deadeye together). I've come out with at least 4 different options that match which is much better than the alternative of playing every class on a whim - hoping it feels right.

    Although you will see/hear a lot of people putting down Soulbeast, I recommend you give it a try. It does offer another level of complexity and micro-management, something that I appreciate. While it doesn't necessarily feel that different from core ranger, I find it very engaging and it can be a powerhouse if played right. I am not an expert, but I have pretty good success with it roaming in WvW. This is the build I usually run:
    http://gw2skills.net/editor/?vNAQNBjYD7kSFoVQshFwlFgrFsMJYPBhO3HLv3+bLuNBgH3EokpdA
    (For gear, I mostly run marauder's)
    While roaming, it's a lot of fun to play with the owl. The mobility you get is really nice, and you basically get perma-swiftness with it (especially if you take WHaO). I feel quite slippery between the sword, the owl's merge swoop, the smokescale's merge smoke assault (900 range), superspeed from petswap, and the stealth from LB3 and smokescale F2. Other classes will be more mobile (thief, mesmer, sometimes warrior), but I have been able to disengage countless times from even these classes (thief less so) just by playing my mobility and stealth well.
    It's not as forgiving as druid is, but the challenge is fun. The playstyle is very active and engaging. You can technically sit back and shoot at the enemy in a larger scale fight, but in skirmishes, you will die trying.
    Overall, it is not the best in show pick. It is true when people say it's not fully ironed out. Other specs will outperform you, but it still is a good skirmisher. Mesmer, for example, is probably an all-around better choice, and I am sure they are fun, but they just leave a bad taste in my mouth from all the power mirages in WvW that 100-0 me from stealth. With that said though, I find Soulbeast to be very enjoyable, engaging, and challenging. Not the hardest spec to master, but not the easiest by any means either.

    Just my two cents.

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