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Fractal runners


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What is the most not only acceptable but optimal build and gear set for running fractals? I will be starting out basically at level 1-6 and working my way up from there. Unfortunately it is looking like is will be a pug thing at least in the beginning but I would really like to get into fractals and learn how to master them and master the Necro in them! Then will start thinking about WvW but that is still in the near future after fractals.

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If you're aiming to get into t4s, qtfy, and snowcrows have some good builds for necros, what works in raids works in fractals. If you're finding it difficult to survive, swap lingering curses for parasitic contagion. Also depending on the instabilities, change your utilities and traits accordingly. Worst case scenario, you'll have to drop curses for blood for transfusion and take staff for more lf access due to your team being composed of decomposing vegetables, requiring you to spam your f2 and f4 alot. WvW is a completely different ball park than fractals, most of what you learn in fractals will not translate in wvw. As a necro you should play scourge and you have 2 roles in wvw: removing boons and applying conditions. Necro's boon corrupts when used in tandem with scourge's punishment skills fulfill those roles.

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When you're starting out Power Reaper is a really good way to go. At low scales things will die fast enough to make it worth it over condi builds in general. As you get better at fractals and progress up to T4s it starts being a matter of preference:

Condi Scourge: https://snowcrows.com/raids/necromancer/

This build and Condi Reaper both can provide similar levels of damage, however the Condi Scourge build has an easier rotation (or more of a skill priority system than a true rotation) as well as being able to do the vast majority of its damage from range and also hit more targets simultaneously for higher cleave damage in ideal scenarios. Additionally, it can provide a decent amount of supplementary might for your group and provide barriers, condi cleanses and if necessary you can invest into traits like Sand Savant in Scourge or the Blood Magic traitline for more support.

On the subject of alternate traits, you can also run Parasitic Contagion for good sustain IF you can back it up with mastery of damage output. As it converts 10% of your condi damage into self healing it can provide a good source of survivability if neccesary, but be aware that for Scourge it will result in a15% dps loss approximately. Should you decide to use Sand Savant to make shade management a non-issue in situations where you're running more supportive options it will also result in about a 10% dps loss.

Condi Reaper: http://en.gw2skills.net/editor/?vRAQNAR7YjM0QXNWdDe3A/NWKGsoAwAIBE3DLiJRqmwU4WB-jxRAQBR7iAER1f25+DhU53NVCCgnAQA1NsOABYsjNxWsBjdsjdsjdsNAxO2xO2xO2xO2xO2SBsoyK-e

The build I like to run for fractals, mainly as I find it the most fun. Condi Reaper can shine if you know how to manipulate the placement of ice fields to ensure chilling bolts with its rotation, but as a result is more difficult than the Condi Scourge playstyle due to the possibility of whirling on other fields (and getting the ever dreaded Cleansing Bolts). Additionally, the biggest chunk of your damage requires you to be in melee range of a target which can be dangerous at some fights or with Instabilities like Social Awkwardness. This build also provides a lot of CC for the group without investing in too many alternate options, and can also benefit from running Parasitic Contagion. I also find that you can invest in more alternate utility options without too much of a loss in damage, as you can swap out bone fiend and Epidemic as necessary.

For this build, Parasitic Contagion equates to roughly a 10% dps loss, as Reaper does not stay in Scepter as much as Scourge does.

Power Reaper: [Linked by Subli above]

Much more burst damage by merit of being a power build, and also is capable of running passive support without affecting damage too much (as it can run Blood Magic over Soul Reaping without a significant loss). Unfortunately I know the least about this build out of the three but it is still worth mentioning as it can be effective if applied correctly.

As a final note, a big part of fractals isn't just knowing what the optimal build is, but also how to apply the tools you have available to you to different situations as they require it. Running Corrosive Poison Cloud if you need projectile mitigation, Flesh Wurm if you need a blink skill or need to body block projectiles you can't use CPC to deal with, the usage and limitation of Epidemic, etc. If you have any questions about anything specific feel free to ask.

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