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Toughness means nothing on ele (WvW)


solemn.9670

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The more time I spend fooling around with different build ideas, the more I think it's pointless to spec into toughness.

 

With 3000 armour and 18k health, you'll still have your health cut to 25% by one FA plasma burst combo, or to about 40% from one herald sword 3, or you can just completely die to one ranger LB 2 or scrapper grenades, the list goes on. Seems a far better idea to forego toughness and just run block/evade/invuln-heavy, but isn't that kind of boring and tedious? Hold on let me interrupt this duel for the next 10seconds so I can invuln,block,evade combo because if I don't I'll just melt to almost anything you throw my way despite having such high toughness.

 

anything beyond fire-arcane sword weaver, FA scepter weaver and niche tempest builds just don't perform right

 

after typing all of this I think I shouldn't have though. I mean we all know that the real issue is lack of balance across all classes, and that this wouldn't be an issue if the things bursting through 3k toughness weren't so absurd to begin with.

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I mean, yeah but hasn't toughness always kind of been secondary to healing power on Elementalist? Back in the day, it wasn't our raw toughness that kept us alive, it was the boon spam. In the early days of GW2, Ele was the Boon Master with no other class coming close to its level of upkeep of personal sustain with vigor, protection and regen (guards would be the closest). Celestial is so power on Elementalist because it doesn't focus on just one aspect, it hits all of them which is what Elementalist needs to survive.

This isn't anything new, the devs have even said in the past that Elementalists are meant to be weak to burst damage in trade off for their better overall sustain. Whether or not they live up to this image, thats a matter of debate, but from a design point of view, it seems like its been pretty stable since Core.

Also, I mean, if you really want toughness, its possible to make ridiculously tanky  Elementalist build. It's just making tanky builds are dull and you never actually win the fights, your opponent just messes up or leaves lol.

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Active defense is almost always better than passive defense.  For example, in full celestial I take 75% of the damage I would've taken with no armor.  It seems like a lot at first, but really it just means I survive one, maybe two big additional attacks.

Though to provide a counter point, the scaling to all of our healing skills has been reduced so significantly as to make healing power almost useless.  Additional toughness can be considered a boon to heals when looking at strike damage, since each point of health recovered is now worth more on a harder target.  

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tougness is pointless for all classes compare to block/invuln/evade.

because the later scales a lot better.

even warrior needed to take toughness amulet in pvp to survive from jumps before 2020 revamp.

 

and how is actively blocking/evading/invuling more boring then building tougness and forget about it and think you can tank everything?....it's not interrupting the duel,  it is part of the duel...also if you just build toughness and HP, you do no damage, that's more boring.

 

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Why do we look at active and passive defense as completely separate?  They aren't.  If toughness "only" allows you to survive one more big hit, what does it mean for your active defense cooldowns?  That applies to stats other than toughness as well.  If you have toughness and healing power, for instance.  Now I survive one more hit, allowing my defense cooldowns to refresh to save me from another big hit, and then I heal it back.  Aren't we on a completely different level of sustain at that point?  Why does only the dodge/block/invuln matter in that equation?

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On 10/9/2021 at 7:57 AM, AliamRationem.5172 said:

Why do we look at active and passive defense as completely separate?  They aren't.  If toughness "only" allows you to survive one more big hit, what does it mean for your active defense cooldowns?  That applies to stats other than toughness as well.  If you have toughness and healing power, for instance.  Now I survive one more hit, allowing my defense cooldowns to refresh to save me from another big hit, and then I heal it back.  Aren't we on a completely different level of sustain at that point?  Why does only the dodge/block/invuln matter in that equation?

We look at them separately because they really are beasts with different natures.  Passive defenses require no input or technique to use.  Active defenses do.  Active defenses have a complicated nature, where different kinds behave in different ways.  The most common one (dodge) is capable of stopping an infinite amount of damage for 3/4ths of a second, while also stopping debilitating conditions and crowd control.  Passive defenses like toughness and vitality, don't stop any of those things and can only mediate a finite amount of damage.  Dodge is different from heals, which is different from interrupts, which is different from on-hit blocks, which is different from debilitating conditions, which is different from mobility skills, which is different from reflects, etc and so on.  Because of this, it is impossible to itemize the overall contribution of active and passive defenses against each other as you're describing, except for fixed PVE encounters.  

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On 10/9/2021 at 7:57 AM, AliamRationem.5172 said:

If toughness "only" allows you to survive one more big hit

That's best case scenario, and demands a hefty investment into toughness at the expense of offense. Which in the long run is not usually worth the exchange for equivalent reduction of offense.

The longer the fight, the more damage you will take. What does that mean? That means raising your toughness to lengthen the fight, you actually take more damage in the long run. Ironic.

Pro-tip: a dead enemy deals no damage. When you kill an enemy, you have essentially 'healed' or 'prevented' an indefinite amount of damage.

That's why healing and toughness stats are usually traps. You go into Water hoping for some healing. Meanwhile the enemies are still hammering down on you, negating the very measly healing you sputtered out. Now you've just wasted time but the enemies are still there. The dire situation remains the same.

In comparison, a Mirage with only one heal skill has better sustain than all Elementalist Water and Earth skills combined.

I see 'veterans' advise new players to stick with the default Soldier's armor. That's very bad advice. When several mobs are hitting you, Soldier armor is not buying you enough time, in exchange for the massively reduced damage you deal. Thus allowing the enemies to survive longer and continue to deal damage to you.

However, when you take down one enemy at a time in timely fashion, you have 'prevented' or lessened damage you take. Instead of 5 enemies hitting you, now only 4, then 3, then 2. Thus you start taking less and less damage as fight goes on.

A higher toughness will not help as much against a group of enemies, because it doesn't buy enough time--definitely not as much as killing one enemy. In fact, with massively reduced offense, even killing the first enemy will be much harder.

You're thinking you are buying more time with more toughness at the expense of more offense. On the flip side, that means you are also giving your opponent extra time to live, more chances to kill you first.

CC is more important and useful than healing or toughness. Some top PVP builds would go Air/Earth for CC, and almost never go into Water. One because Water healing amount is pathetic, it doesn't help at all. Or worse, you're wasting time when you could be doing stuff that actually alleviates the situation, or puts you at an advantage.

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4 hours ago, Shena Fu.5792 said:

That's best case scenario, and demands a hefty investment into toughness at the expense of offense. Which in the long run is not usually worth the exchange for equivalent reduction of offense.

The longer the fight, the more damage you will take. What does that mean? That means raising your toughness to lengthen the fight, you actually take more damage in the long run. Ironic.

Pro-tip: a dead enemy deals no damage. When you kill an enemy, you have essentially 'healed' or 'prevented' an indefinite amount of damage.

That's why healing and toughness stats are usually traps. You go into Water hoping for some healing. Meanwhile the enemies are still hammering down on you, negating the very measly healing you sputtered out. Now you've just wasted time but the enemies are still there. The dire situation remains the same.

In comparison, a Mirage with only one heal skill has better sustain than all Elementalist Water and Earth skills combined.

I see 'veterans' advise new players to stick with the default Soldier's armor. That's very bad advice. When several mobs are hitting you, Soldier armor is not buying you enough time, in exchange for the massively reduced damage you deal. Thus allowing the enemies to survive longer and continue to deal damage to you.

However, when you take down one enemy at a time in timely fashion, you have 'prevented' or lessened damage you take. Instead of 5 enemies hitting you, now only 4, then 3, then 2. Thus you start taking less and less damage as fight goes on.

A higher toughness will not help as much against a group of enemies, because it doesn't buy enough time--definitely not as much as killing one enemy. In fact, with massively reduced offense, even killing the first enemy will be much harder.

You're thinking you are buying more time with more toughness at the expense of more offense. On the flip side, that means you are also giving your opponent extra time to live, more chances to kill you first.

CC is more important and useful than healing or toughness. Some top PVP builds would go Air/Earth for CC, and almost never go into Water. One because Water healing amount is pathetic, it doesn't help at all. Or worse, you're wasting time when you could be doing stuff that actually alleviates the situation, or puts you at an advantage.

If this were true, they wouldn't keep removing bunker amulets from PvP and condi builds wouldn't be vastly superior to power builds for solo play (against things that hit harder than trash).

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2 hours ago, AliamRationem.5172 said:

If this were true, they wouldn't keep removing bunker amulets from PvP and condi builds wouldn't be vastly superior to power builds for solo play (against things that hit harder than trash).

Even though anet did remove so many amulets from sPvP, this doesn't support the argument. Their decision to remove amulets , to put it mildly, 'was not really well thought through'. As a result, we now have almost zero build diversity, and, SURPRISE, bunkers are still here even without those so-called op amulets, 

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What has not been said about toughness on Ele yet, is the fact that high toughness + low HP pool makes you a NPC magnet, meaning if you fight a human enemy among hostile NPCs, it will be you that gets attacked most of the time (like in a camp or tower, guards will through their bola skill to immobilize at you and not e.g. the warrior you are fighting).

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14 hours ago, Shena Fu.5792 said:

That's best case scenario, and demands a hefty investment into toughness at the expense of offense. Which in the long run is not usually worth the exchange for equivalent reduction of offense.

The longer the fight, the more damage you will take. What does that mean? That means raising your toughness to lengthen the fight, you actually take more damage in the long run. Ironic.

Pro-tip: a dead enemy deals no damage. When you kill an enemy, you have essentially 'healed' or 'prevented' an indefinite amount of damage.

That's why healing and toughness stats are usually traps. You go into Water hoping for some healing. Meanwhile the enemies are still hammering down on you, negating the very measly healing you sputtered out. Now you've just wasted time but the enemies are still there. The dire situation remains the same.

That is... not true.  I've done the math on this with elementalist.  Assuming the standard gear sets of full ascended, force, impacting, scholar runes, and running either soldiers or berserkers will get you the following stats:

 

Berserkers

Power: 2556

Crit Chance: 50.8%

Crit Damage: 229.1%

Health: 11,645

Armor: 1967

Effective Health = 11,645 x (1967/1920) = 11,930

Effective Power = 2556 x (.502 + 2.2914 x 0.498) = 2556 x 1.656 = 4,233

Effective Health X Effective Power = 50,499,690

 

Soldiers

Power: 2556

Crit Chance: 5%

Crit Damage: 165%

Health: 21,255

Armor: 2928

Effective Health = 21,255 x (2928 / 1920) = 32,414

Effective Power: 2556 x (.95 + 1.65 x 0.05) = 2639

Effective Health X Effective Power = 85,540,546

 

Without having to consider build differences and specific modifiers, Soldiers gear does 62% of the damage of berserkers, while having 172% more health which is 2.72 times higher.  This is why when you compare the overall damage done per point of health, soldiers is 69% higher.

The reason why this happens is because the offensive stats don't scale as well with each other as the defensive stats do.  Power has an efficient growth, but precision and ferocity don't.  On the defensive side, healing power is always terrible.  But... toughness and vitality aren't.  Those are dependent on how many points you already have.  The ideal ratio is when your health is ten times higher than the armor value.  With the exception of necromancer, all professions need a significant amount of vitality before toughness becomes an equivalent investment.  For example, giving an Ele 1200 vitality will double their effective health, but giving them 1200 toughness will only increase it by 61%.

The superiority of berserkers in PVE doesn't come from an efficient distribution of stats.  It comes from other design choices in the game.  Namely, active defenses exist, you auto-heal to full out of combat, and most enemies are made so their total damage X health product is significantly less than what a berserker build has.  Because of this, in PVE all of the defensive stats are unnecessary.  Win by an inch or win by a mile, you still win.  Though Anet is making the game harder as time goes on, so if you want a substantial safety net, go with Marauders.  It has 91.2% of the offensive strength of Berserkers, and also has 6330 additional health.  Running around in PVE and WvW, you won't notice the damage drop, but that 6k health will save you time and again.

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But that Soldier build won't be able to burst a target. Part of why there is more 'damage' done is because the fight is drawn out longer. Unless the soldier is able to shore up critical hit chance and ferocity from somewhere, it will lack the pressure needed to finish a fight.

I've been running a soldier's build lately on my warrior, but I can do that because Arms shores up my ferocity and critical hit chance. I've had success with it certainly, but that is because of Arms shoring up my stat deficiencies to maintain the same effective power as a Berserker Build.

 

Air can shore up Ferocity for Ele, and Catalyst can shore up every state with the new Elemental Empowerment. But it cant really shore up critical hit chance outside of a Sigil of Intelligence. Right now using blocks, invulns, blinds, and barrier is more useful to an ele than toughness boosting. I can attest to that from fighting them.

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Normally I don't like to do this, but there's a lot here that will be hard to address as a whole.

 

12 hours ago, Lan Deathrider.5910 said:

But that Soldier build won't be able to burst a target. Part of why there is more 'damage' done is because the fight is drawn out longer. Unless the soldier is able to shore up critical hit chance and ferocity from somewhere, it will lack the pressure needed to finish a fight.

If you are referring to taking more damage in the long run, you have to consider that in proportion.  Soldiers doing 62% of the damage of berserkers means an enemy will live 1.61 times longer.  Assuming they're doing constant damage, they'll do 1.61 times more damage.  However, Soldiers lives 2.72 times longer.  This means that Soldiers has an overall greater advantage, since it is more than compensated for by its extra bulk.  If we're fighting against a human opponent, it means that a Berserker's burst against a Soldier means less than a Soldier's burst against a Berserker.

I don't know how things are in PVP right now, since its all talk of bots and match-fixing.  In WvW, the biggest problem with soldiers is with solo roaming.  There, sustain is the name of the game.  Since heals work as negative damage, being unable to out-damage an opponents heals means gradual but eventual death.  Sustain is really high in WvW right now, so much so that I've gotten into infinite fights while wearing Marauder sets.  However if you're in a group, Soldiers is an excellent WvW set because it is really good at keeping you alive while doing non-trivial damage.

 

12 hours ago, Lan Deathrider.5910 said:

I've been running a soldier's build lately on my warrior, but I can do that because Arms shores up my ferocity and critical hit chance. I've had success with it certainly, but that is because of Arms shoring up my stat deficiencies to maintain the same effective power as a Berserker Build.

 

Air can shore up Ferocity for Ele, and Catalyst can shore up every state with the new Elemental Empowerment. But it cant really shore up critical hit chance outside of a Sigil of Intelligence. Right now using blocks, invulns, blinds, and barrier is more useful to an ele than toughness boosting. I can attest to that from fighting them.

 

So then you can run soldiers... Anyway, when you consider traits, you have to think of it like this:  A trait/sigil/rune can be given to both gear sets, or if it doesn't work on one set then something else can replace them.  The only time this is a consideration, however, is with precision, since that is the only stat that has a hard cap to it.  Bonus Power/Ferocity/Whatever can be given to both sets equally, so they really can't be used to shore up the numbers on one build, but not the other.  From the sound of it, the Arms line is there just to compensate for soldier's lack of precision.  If you were wearing another set (say, Marauders), then you could take an entirely different trait line, since you wouldn't need to try and constantly boost crit chance.

For elementalist, though, there's far better gear sets to recommend than soldiers.  For maximum damage, go with Marauders.  For an overpowered mix of everything, go with celestial.  If celestial ever gets nerfed, go with Marshals.  For a tankier/more annoying build to fight against, go Trailblazer.  

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15 hours ago, Lan Deathrider.5910 said:

But that Soldier build won't be able to burst a target. Part of why there is more 'damage' done is because the fight is drawn out longer. Unless the soldier is able to shore up critical hit chance and ferocity from somewhere, it will lack the pressure needed to finish a fight.

What, you mean something like having all the boons permanently? 

Anyway, WvW is never as simple as X stat mean nothing. Because it's not a 1v1 exclusive mode between perfectly equal players. I've met eles that decided fights *simply because of their presence and utter refusal to die*. Numbers always matter when your HP is slowly being trickled away, or you're being perma stunlocked. They may not be able kill you due to "weak" damage, but a +1 is a death sentence. I dont play eles - I fight eles. And the eles I find impossible to kill, as in there is absolutely 0% chance I will ever defeat them with the build I'm on because I cant hit them and they take next to no damage from my attacks... they get roflstomped in 3 seconds by some random power deeps dude that swooped in. So, did the toughness mean something or didnt it, lol?

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25 minutes ago, Dawdler.8521 said:

What, you mean something like having all the boons permanently? 

Anyway, WvW is never as simple as X stat mean nothing. Because it's not a 1v1 exclusive mode between perfectly equal players. I've met eles that decided fights *simply because of their presence and utter refusal to die*. Numbers always matter when your HP is slowly being trickled away, or you're being perma stunlocked. They may not be able kill you due to "weak" damage, but a +1 is a death sentence. I dont play eles - I fight eles. And the eles I find impossible to kill, as in there is absolutely 0% chance I will ever defeat them with the build I'm on because I cant hit them and they take next to no damage from my attacks... they get roflstomped in 3 seconds by some random power deeps dude that swooped in. So, did the toughness mean something or didnt it, lol?

Def and hp means a lot more in big combat then 1v1 as in big combat your going to get burst from more then one player meaning you need something to just keep you alive enofe to be healed by your support. In 1v1 combat you need to live though one person burst but you need to be able to over come the other person healing. Ele has the lack of counter dmg mitigation unlike most classes in the game (i guess cata getting unblockables but only for 5 sec and a very hard effect to trigger) so ele has to do a lot more work to deal with players ability to stay alive then most classes.

Toughness means very little to ele as a class because its already pass the point of no return. You cant min it as you need to put all of your work into dmg doing and healing. Anet has given ele nothing to gimmick a fight to deal with the support of most classes by say vs other eles.

Maybe if they even give barrier to core and tempest (as well as cata) and that barrier some how is effected by toughness in say duration but till then your far better getting healing power and vit with  barrier for both 1v1 and big fights.

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