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WvW Firebrand roaming build guide


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For the longest time FB remained garbage/meme tier for roaming. With the (relatively 😆) recent buffs to celestial gear, however, this is no longer the case. FB benefits massively from it since it has a crap ton of boon and condition output, allowing it to even surpass DH in many situations. 

 

Gear: 

Axe/shield with absorption+draining and scepter/focus with energy+cleansing. Full celestial (or marauder weapons and full celestial otherwise) with speed runes. 

 

The only thing you can customize here is the scepter/focus set (only the weapons themselves; sigils must stay as energy+cleansing). You can take GS or sword/x for mobility, or even mace/x for maximum sustain. 

 

Build: 

[&DQENJjErPhVLF0sXUxdTF0cBRwEtAS0BNwE3AQAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA=]

 

Possible changes are in the Honor adept traits--take the mace trait if using mace, and protective reviver if you’re roaming in a group. If you’re playing with 2+ other people you can replace Monk’s Focus with Altruistic Healing. It’s possible to replace Valor with Zeal 1-1-2 or 1-1-3 for more damage, but this is overall a downgrade for solo play. Despite having 2 sustain lines and a utility line, the damage is actually quite impressive. I don’t struggle to kill anything that isn’t also taking 2 sustain lines with celestial/minstrel. 

 

General Usage: 

Proccing the absorption+draining sigils on your axe/shield set is the cornerstone of this build. They both have no ICD whatsoever against targets without breakbars (aka every single player you will meet). This is the primary reason the build scales up so well--every new enemy to join the fight is another body to proc your sigils on. Each proc is a 1.1k lifesteal and a triple boonsteal, which not only gives you a lot of sustain in 1vX but some pretty impressive offensive capabilities as well. The lifesteal bypasses armor/protection, and the boonsteal removes their protection (if they had any xD) to boot, allowing you to pressure even bunker builds pretty hard. 

 

How to maximize the chances of proccing: make sure you aren’t CC chaining, in the traditional sense. You want to space your CCs out by about 1/3s (after factoring in cast times) since this maximizes the chances that your target will begin casting something, but also fail to complete the cast before your next CC lands. For example if you just landed an axe3/sh5, do not cast axe2 immediately. Pulls and knockbacks last 1s, and axe2 takes 1s to cast--thus you want to wait 1/3s after a successful axe3/sh5 before starting the cast of axe2. All of your CCs (except for tome3 skill2, thanks to expertise) last 1s so it’s easy to do this once you’ve familiarized yourself with all the cast times on your skills. Additionally, since tomes inherit your sigils, ideally you want to be in axe/shield when popping f1/f3 since that way you get more procs of absorption+draining. 

 

Util usage: 

Heal mantra: Despite the pitiful base healing, Honor+Valor together brings the healing/minute above that of shelter. The difference however is that this cannot be interrupted (making thieves/necros/eles a lot less threatening), and you can use it while CCed/casting other skills. If you get CCed, most of the time you can just eat them while using your heal mantra to cover yourself until the CC ends. Thanks to Valor, this skill is also effective against multi-hits since you get 1.4 seconds of protection after each aegis. You’ll also proc lesser symbol of protection on a 20s ICD with this skill, which can be used to counterpressure as it deals 33% more dmg/tick than regular symbols. 

 

Cleanse mantra: Use it to cleanse. If your opponent(s) don’t have many condi applications, you can use this for the regen--it’s a pretty hefty 1.4k healing per charge. 

 

JI: You will notice that I hardly ever use JI. That’s because JI is the disengage tool for this build--it’s your only means of escaping zergs, in addition to being quite handy for securing kills on low health targets who try to flee. If you don’t care about these things, take either Mantra of Truth, Stand your ground, or Shield of the Avenger. 

 

Retreat: Mash off CD (for the 2nd charge only--keep 1 charge in reserve). This is your primary source of swiftness, which is crucial for getting value out of speed runes. The reserve charge can be used the same way as your heal mantra (minus the lesser symbol) 

 

RF: Use this when there’s a crap ton of incoming fire and you’re out of other defensive measures. Ideally you want to have all your tomes on CD before using this to get maximum value, but since tomes take quite a long time to cast so they can’t really be used reactionarily. If you often find yourself RFing with tomes unused, change your playstyle to be using tomes more liberally. 

 

Tomes: 

Entering/exiting a tome counts as a weapon swap for relevant sigils. Thus if you need more cleanse/dodges you can enter a tome the in scepter/focus set a couple seconds before weapon swap comes off CD, so by the time you’ve finished casting all the skills and exit the tome you’ll proc the energy+cleansing sigils. 

 

F1: Always use skills 4 and 3 before exiting the tome. Skill5 is useful in 1v1 or XvX, but not useful in 1vX since it only procs on 1 target. Skill2 is nice if you can get it to land, otherwise just spam skill1 until you’re out of pages. 

 

F2: It gives decent healing but requires such a long time to cast that you won’t be using this very often. Skills 5 and 2 can be used for emergency cleanse, Skill4 is more healing than any other skill in the tome, and 3 is useful for the vigor. If you’re not getting pressured you basically just wanna use every single skill once (skip skill2 if you have no condis on yourself). If you’re getting pressured you can just skill5+4 then exit tome. Skills 3 and 4 give some short duration swiftness if your swiftness from retreat got boonripped. 

 

F3: Mostly just used for the reflect. The resistance can help against immob druids and such, and skill2 can be used for absorption+draining procs if you entered the tome while in axe/shield. Skill1 can sometimes be useful for the swiftness if your swiftness from retreat got boonripped. 

 

 

Here's a vid of the build in action, enjoy 😊

 

 

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7 hours ago, Guirssane.7082 said:

0 mobility build, you aren't gonna catch anyone that disengage with this, unless u play sword and GS but not optimal for this kind of build

I've optimized the build a bit to run sword since my post, but I think ur focusing too much on personal mobility and not enough on what u can do to limit your target's mobility (and personal mobility isn't bad either with speed runes). axe2 applies a ton of cripple, especially if u axe3 them back into the symbol after they get out, and just axe3 alone is the equivalent of an 800/900 range port. Not to mention that if they're on a swiftness-dependent build they're basically screwed as u will constantly steal their swiftness away. Ofc stuff like thief, ranger, nade scrapper will still be able to disengage but they can do so against most builds in the game anyways. 

Edited by Hogwarts Zebra.8597
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Sorry, but I 2 defence trait lines are an overkill. Besides, in WvW no one is going to stand in your symbols, so I would def recommend dropping Honour in favour of Radiance. Take sw/torch +GS as well and Firework Runes. You ll get great sustain and very good burst. 
Built here: http://gw2skills.net/editor/?PWwAw+FlRwkYYMQ2IW2PaPdA-z1IY1oj/UqUEkpEoThQvKAFfACXP8a0wnG-w

Edited by ollbirtan.2915
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8 hours ago, ollbirtan.2915 said:

Sorry, but I 2 defence trait lines are an overkill. Besides, in WvW no one is going to stand in your symbols, so I would def recommend dropping Honour in favour of Radiance. Take sw/torch +GS as well and Firework Runes. You ll get great sustain and very good burst. 
Built here: http://gw2skills.net/editor/?PWwAw+FlRwkYYMQ2IW2PaPdA-z1IY1oj/UqUEkpEoThQvKAFfACXP8a0wnG-w

2 isn't really overkill for FB, ur forgetting that your heal skill only heals for 200 health base 😂

Half the point of honor is to make your symbols bigger so that it's much harder to simply walk out of them. If ur gonna drop one defensive traitline u drop valor 100%. I've tried a few variants where I dropped valor and radiance worked well as long as u kept axe/shield with absorption+draining (I use sw/torch as the other set)

Speed runes are half the reason FB works, with your setup yes u can momentarily port/leap onto someone but they will just easily re-create the gap. Absorption+draining sigils are also crucial, so one of your weapon sets must be axe/shield. 

Remember that in order to make a FB build work u have to find workarounds to the useless baseline heal skill (with my build it's done through the double aegis synergy from valor+honor and relying on draining sigil for healing). 

7 hours ago, Stand The Wall.6987 said:

a gw2skills.net link would be helpful

I've revised the build since my vid, I currently run this: http://gw2skills.net/editor/?PWABc6x/lRwkYXsP2IeMTrvKA-z1IY1onvUyMC6NE6uACPBsbA-w. U can also drop valor for radiance (no other changes to gear/build necessary) for more dmg, but personally I don't cuz if I wanted dmg I'd simply play DH; I play FB for the sustain and AOE. 

2 hours ago, Trepidation Lost.3469 said:

Most of these fights are vs bronze and silver players 🤷🏽‍♂️ I can 1v5 a bunch of bronze players on multiple classes 😛 but yes, not sure about your build but cele FB is better since the cele change. Not where it was before some chunky nerfs but hey Ho.

WvW rank has no indication on player skill (I'm bronze myself but being a former pvp main I can beat over 99% of ppl I come across). That said the opponents in my vid definitely were not of the highest caliber--it's simply impossible to win 1vX against opponents of relatively equal skill to your own unless they're playing garbage builds or get way too overconfident. 

Edited by Hogwarts Zebra.8597
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6 hours ago, Hogwarts Zebra.8597 said:

2 isn't really overkill for FB, ur forgetting that your heal skill only heals for 200 health base 😂

Half the point of honor is to make your symbols bigger so that it's much harder to simply walk out of them. If ur gonna drop one defensive traitline u drop valor 100%. I've tried a few variants where I dropped valor and radiance worked well as long as u kept axe/shield with absorption+draining (I use sw/torch as the other set)

Speed runes are half the reason FB works, with your setup yes u can momentarily port/leap onto someone but they will just easily re-create the gap. Absorption+draining sigils are also crucial, so one of your weapon sets must be axe/shield. 

Remember that in order to make a FB build work u have to find workarounds to the useless baseline heal skill (with my build it's done through the double aegis synergy from valor+honor and relying on draining sigil for healing). 

I've revised the build since my vid, I currently run this: http://gw2skills.net/editor/?PWABc6x/lRwkYXsP2IeMTrvKA-z1IY1onvUyMC6NE6uACPBsbA-w. U can also drop valor for radiance (no other changes to gear/build necessary) for more dmg, but personally I don't cuz if I wanted dmg I'd simply play DH; I play FB for the sustain and AOE. 

WvW rank has no indication on player skill (I'm bronze myself but being a former pvp main I can beat over 99% of ppl I come across). That said the opponents in my vid definitely were not of the highest caliber--it's simply impossible to win 1vX against opponents of relatively equal skill to your own unless they're playing garbage builds or get way too overconfident. 


A lot of PVPers also WVW roam, so there is usually a correlation.

you don’t often see high rank WVW players roaming if they got their rank from blobbing. 
but yes, equally skilled players you can’t 1v5

 

however I did say i could 1v5 bronze players. I’ve got about 9k of my 14k hours played wvw roaming, so it’s a common occurrence decimating bronze players 😛 

 
 

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This is a great Firebrand roaming build.
It caters for the following:
  1. high ping. I play on 200+ ms
  2. simple, but aggressive, melee type play style
  3. casual players who don't have the time to invest in playing other classes to understand their mechanics
  4. no need to study the condition and boon icons or understand what specific class animation mean, because their skills will likely be interrupted
  5. most important of all, counter newbie one-shot thief's. If I get backstabbed and they stealth immediately after, I do:
    1. axe3 to pull them into axe' symbol (I never knew CCs will hit stealth players)
    2. advance, for the speed, so I can zig-zag around their toons or chase them when they realize this isn't going to be as easy as their previous 10 duels
    3. press every key I could remember will interrupt or immobilize them

And voila, I countered a couple of thiefs (even killed 2), and now WvW is fun and a game mode worth playing.

The most off-putting thing about WvW is the 2 minute trek from your waypoint to reach the zerg on the other side of the map, only to get one-shot by newbie thiefs.

On that note, a special thanks to skilled players who let new players get up instead of stomp. Newbie thiefs always stomp ;)

Respect to Hogwarts Zebra.8597 for creating a guardian build that catered for the above scenarios.

Edited by Graal.5614
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15 hours ago, Hogwarts Zebra.8597 said:

2 isn't really overkill for FB, ur forgetting that your heal skill only heals for 200 health base 😂

Half the point of honor is to make your symbols bigger so that it's much harder to simply walk out of them. If ur gonna drop one defensive traitline u drop valor 100%. I've tried a few variants where I dropped valor and radiance worked well as long as u kept axe/shield with absorption+draining (I use sw/torch as the other set)

Speed runes are half the reason FB works, with your setup yes u can momentarily port/leap onto someone but they will just easily re-create the gap. Absorption+draining sigils are also crucial, so one of your weapon sets must be axe/shield. 

Remember that in order to make a FB build work u have to find workarounds to the useless baseline heal skill (with my build it's done through the double aegis synergy from valor+honor and relying on draining sigil for healing). 

I've revised the build since my vid, I currently run this: http://gw2skills.net/editor/?PWABc6x/lRwkYXsP2IeMTrvKA-z1IY1onvUyMC6NE6uACPBsbA-w. U can also drop valor for radiance (no other changes to gear/build necessary) for more dmg, but personally I don't cuz if I wanted dmg I'd simply play DH; I play FB for the sustain and AOE. 

WvW rank has no indication on player skill (I'm bronze myself but being a former pvp main I can beat over 99% of ppl I come across). That said the opponents in my vid definitely were not of the highest caliber--it's simply impossible to win 1vX against opponents of relatively equal skill to your own unless they're playing garbage builds or get way too overconfident. 

Sorry, but just no -  with speed runes AND honour you are hitting like a wet noodle so there is really no need to chase anyone. Also, FB 1 -1-1 looks like an old meta Sagebrand, but that is in the past and, was for sPvP anyway. By taking 2-2-3 for WvW you ensure more damage and sustain application. Healing through aegis is great only if you are running a dedicated support build , but then you won't be solo roaming in that case. I can understand Axe/shield - but still GS is my personal preference because of great burst synergy with your quickness( FB) + resolution traits (Radiance ). 

Also, if you want to capitalise on your CCs, you need to take Virtues - Glacial Heart, but then you would have to sacrifice honour or Valour and now you are left with zero sustain since you have opted for Stoic Demeanor instead of Loremaster. 

Your build can work in small scale roaming (5~10 ppl), but honestly you would be better off running either full support or DPS instead.... 

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33 minutes ago, ollbirtan.2915 said:

Sorry, but just no -  with speed runes AND honour you are hitting like a wet noodle so there is really no need to chase anyone. Also, FB 1 -1-1 looks like an old meta Sagebrand, but that is in the past and, was for sPvP anyway. By taking 2-2-3 for WvW you ensure more damage and sustain application. Healing through aegis is great only if you are running a dedicated support build , but then you won't be solo roaming in that case. I can understand Axe/shield - but still GS is my personal preference because of great burst synergy with your quickness( FB) + resolution traits (Radiance ). 

Also, if you want to capitalise on your CCs, you need to take Virtues - Glacial Heart, but then you would have to sacrifice honour or Valour and now you are left with zero sustain since you have opted for Stoic Demeanor instead of Loremaster. 

Your build can work in small scale roaming (5~10 ppl), but honestly you would be better off running either full support or DPS instead.... 

I see ur completely ignoring draining+absorption sigils, which I have repeatedly emphasized are key to my build. Axe autos also hit very hard if u land the 3rd chain. I have no problem securing kills on non-bunker opponents.

If ur on NA we can duel each using our own builds, u will stand 0 chance with the setup u linked. 

Btw sagebrand was never 1.1.1, it was 1.1.3

Edited by Hogwarts Zebra.8597
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15 hours ago, Hogwarts Zebra.8597 said:

I see ur completely ignoring draining+absorption sigils, which I have repeatedly emphasized are key to my build. Axe autos also hit very hard if u land the 3rd chain. I have no problem securing kills on non-bunker opponents.

If ur on NA we can duel each using our own builds, u will stand 0 chance with the setup u linked. 

Btw sagebrand was never 1.1.1, it was 1.1.3

Chill man - the fact you are trying to flex here by challenging me to a duel says a lot. And no, I'm not on NA.
I'm sorry if my constructive criticism has hurt your feelings. 

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I don't think dropping Honor with OP's setup is a good idea; it kinda does need that sustain or burst would kill pretty fast. Big symbols are just more of a side effect of taking Honor but sorta needed with an axe build because otherwise you'll have trouble hitting anything. It's not about people standing in symbols. We already assume that won't happen. It's about landing the daze. The build is centered around it

1-1-1 makes sense for an Axe build or else just don't take axe at all. But 1-1-3 is pretty solid too. I think weighty terms is just better sustain; it just doesn't feel right with the quickness trait though it's probably stronger when not solo since giving your allies quickness is big.

We do have to keep in mind OP's build is for solo. And it is extremely annoying to fight. I tried it and It's not my thing, but it certainly can work (those 2 sigils are silent killers!).

Edited by ArchonWing.9480
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On 12/25/2021 at 2:57 AM, ollbirtan.2915 said:

Chill man - the fact you are trying to flex here by challenging me to a duel says a lot. And no, I'm not on NA.
I'm sorry if my constructive criticism has hurt your feelings. 

Chill man - the fact you are interpreting my invitation to duel as a flex says a lot. I'm sorry if my request to see your build in action has hurt your feelings. 

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7 hours ago, ollbirtan.2915 said:

Sure man. You clearly can not / do not want to hear me, so I'd agree to disagree. 

I read the whole post and I think you’re in the wrong - all you did was basically give him Vallun’s build (not saying he made it first but has a few YT vids on it) and said his is garbage. Did you even try it?

I think OP did a great job sharing his unique build and giving his own perspective on how it works for him. As I am a convert from sPVP and mainly solo roam, it’s fun trying different builds. While I do think his original build is just a tad slow on dps, it is a juggernaut and still can kill. 

My preference is running FB 1-1-3 and Radiance 3-2-3 over valor with sword/torch (which he said is possible) to get more dps and taking camps even easier with F1 reset. 

OP - keep doing you!

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