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All classes are build for it, but depending on game mode and content, some of them will be strong, some just viable and others useless.

The only classes who dont have any reason to heal allies are warrior and thief, but even they have some aoe healing sources.

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If you're meaning to become a healer in casual PvE, there isn't really one. GW2 does not have a trinity system. Only raid builds are sometimes specialized for such teamwork, and as the others said above, the ranger - druid specialization - is the "healer". But if you're looking to play as a healer from day 1, there is no such thing.

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I personally always liked receiving the "heal" from renegade and necromancer the most, they don't actually heal you but they add passive "lifesteal" to your attacks but I guess that has some other drawbacks to it so depending on the situation it's often times not the optimal way to go. That being said necromancers sould be capable of reviving fallen players the fastest out of every profession iirc.

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just a tip to other posters, when a new player asks for help to play how they want, do not say "you can't do it" or "it won't work". Players are not immediately born fully-grown into the end-game content of this game.

To OP:The dedicated healing class is Druid (Ranger subclass, requires level 80 and Heart of Thorns). If you want to heal at the early levels or if you have no expo, then create either an Elementalist or Guardian, both of them have very strong healing builds when spec'ed for it.

Of them, the Guardian is probably easier to play. but is sometimes rendered into a buffbot by their support builds.

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For the core game, if you don't have any of the expansions, I +1 Hannelore's recommendation of elementalist or guardian. While other classes can and do have group healing options, few of them are as viable as elementalist and guardian. They are also (in my opinion) some of the easier classes to understand and play, so if you're a new player hopping on for the first time, you'll be more easily acquainted with their systems. I also agree that guardian is easier to play than elementalist, but does tend to fall into buffbot roles.

But the expansions provide some pretty amazing options for healers. At level 80 you can begin training in elite specialisations, which grant you new skills and a new weapon that can only be used when using that elite specialisation. So far, there are two expansions, Heart of Thorns and Path of Fire, each of which grants an elite specialisation to each class, which currently means every class has two elite spec options. The expansions also provide a new class, called the revenant, which has some fun options too.

So starting with Heart of Thorns elite specs:

Druid, the ranger elite specialisation, is by far the elite spec most designed for healing, and provides some pretty good options.

Tempest, the elementalist elite spec, is also fantastic for healing, water skills in particular forming the bulk of the healing process, but you're not solely limited to that.

Chronomancer, the mesmer elite spec, is pretty good for healing as well. While chronomancers weren't built for healing like druids and even tempests, chronomancers can have a pretty awesome set of group healing abilities, as long as allies are nearby. Chronomancer is my personal favourite and one that I run with as my main.

Herald, the revenant elite spec, is a pretty good passive support character. While herald specific abilities aren't amazing at healing and are better for passive group buffs, there are core revenant abilities that can be used in addition that can make a good revenant a great healer. I'm not good enough to give advice on how to do that but there are people who can and do try.

And for Path of Fire elite specs:

Firebrand, the guardian elite spec, is a fantastic healer, and in my opinion easier to play than druids with similar healing capabilities. Tempests can match firebrands in terms of healing I believe, but again, guardians and their elite specs are easier to play than elementalists and their elite specs.

Soulbeast, the ranger elite spec, is a very secondary off hand recommendation. It's possible, and I've theorized some builds that could at least make this a good support character, but not a primary healer.

Renegade, the revenant elite spec, is very much like the herald but provides some more offensive capabilities and active buffing. like the soul beast, not a primary healer, but the revenant's primary healing capabilities are in the core of the class, and so far both elite specs for revenant give good support options for that core healer capability.

Scourge, the necromancer elite spec, isn't a healer by any standards, but can provide lots of temporary health that, in effect, stands in for healing, effective granting magical shields that needs to be cut down first before reaching the player's actual health. I've had some occasional fun with this, but it's certainly not as easy to get a grasp on as maybe a firebrand or a tempest. I figured that it would be worth mentioning this specifically because it was designed for support roles but not to necessarily do healing (even though it can provide healing, but to a limited degree).

Overall, every class has the capability to provide at least a limited degree of group healing, which is the primary method of being a healer in Guild Wars 2, but there are classes that are better at it than others, namely the elementalist and guardian.

Btw, a handful of very important things to remember: There's a specific stat that improves healing, called 'healing power', and another stat that increases how long buffs you put on yourself and others last, called concentration, if gear doesn't specifically say it adds +number to 'healing power', it will not improve your healing. Buffs are called boons in this game, and one boon is a healing over time boon called regeneration. Here's a link to the wiki talking about stats, called 'attributes': https://wiki.guildwars2.com/wiki/Attributegood to get yourself acquainted with that, not only is that page useful, but the wiki in general is well kept and has a lot of great information.

When you find yourself acquainted with the game and comfortable with it's mechanics, I'd also take a look at this website: http://en.gw2skills.net/editor/that website can help you look at builds that you can create, but it's not always up to date, specifically when a patch drops some balancing in the game, that website will take a bit to update itself with the changes and balancing.

Good luck! I hope you find a class that suits your playstyle and healer needs!

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@"SarahGobbi.2319" said:Which classes are the "healers" in this game? Im interested in becoming a healer, but not quite sure which classes are built to do it?

There are no healers in Guild Wars 2. It doesn't have the trinity system of DPS, tanks and healers like in different MMOs such as World of Warcraft. That being said, you can actually make healing builds with certain professions.

Engineer - Either core or Scrapper with Med Kit.Elementalist - Staff core or TempestGuardian - FirebrandRevenant - VentariRanger - Druid

There are other professions that can use certain utility skills to heal allies, like warrior with banners, but the profession I listed are the most effective. Engineer may not be as good as the Druid or Firebrand, but if your group lacks a healer or if you have bad Druids or bad Firebrands, feel free to invite a medic engineer. It's better than nothing in my opinion. Med Kit does require a bit of practice when it comes to executing blast finishers with the water field in order to effectively heal players.

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So much bad information in this thread. "Tempests can match firebrands in terms of healing I believe, but again, guardians and their elite specs are easier to play than elementalists" -- a class that heals in a tiny cone-shaped AOE is easier to play than a class that outputs a massive 600 range healing field?

Druid = mediocre healing but strong group buffs. Fairly tedious rotation if you want to maximize your utility to the group.Tempest = strong passive healing and very easy to play, but lacks strong offensive buffs.Firebrand = brings both buffs and healing, though its buffs are not unique and are duplicated by Chronomancers. Difficult to heal with due to short range.Renegade = big stationary AOE healing fields, mixed with a small but mobile healing field. Very high potential healing output and plays in a fairly unique way. May be difficult for beginners.

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The guardian as a whole is easier to play than the elementalist as a whole, which extends to their elite specialisations as a whole. I'm not sure why you strawmanned that and also intentionally made a misleading argument, since the tome of resolve provides large aoe healing fields as well as a ranged aoe heal too, but instead you focused on either the skill 1 of the tome of resolve or the mantras (or maybe even both).

And you're saying I'm the one putting out bad information? Maybe I should have specified that Firebrands specialise in more frontline based healing where tempests can provide healing from afar, but there's also the water overload which requires a not as large aoe healing centered on the tempest, plus the healing shout which is centered on the elementalist, plus the tempest weapon the warhorn (if you choose warhorn and a main hand over staff, which I personally wouldn't) has one limited ranged mobile healing spell and another close ranged healing skill for water, and guardians as a whole have more ranged healing capabilities, with the staff and the trait empowered symbols, the healing teleport, sanctuary, and other things I'm sure I'm forgetting.

As someone who has healed with firebrand, the small aoe cone has been very effective at keeping other frontline players alive, alongside all the other healing capabilities, including other firebrand healing skills and other guardian healing skills too, the ones you conveniently forgot in order to make your strawman argument.

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Lots of people have been skipping over the healing scrapper, which is perfectly viable in open world, fractals, and raids with the updated Med-Kit. It doesn't have the burst emergency heal of a druid, but it has a load of sustain, regen, and condi cleanse. You also have access to the function gyro (res people at range while healing everyone else!) and can use the Bulwark Gyro for a 33% damage reduction for up to 5 people. Then there's elixirs, the other gyros, other kits. Depending on how much damage people are taking, it's quite possible to use your weapon or a kit to damage mobs, switch to Med-Kit to top people up and get loads of regen going, then go back to doing damage.

Or just camp Med-Kit if that's what you prefer.

OP, it really depends on how you want to heal people. Druid (ranger) is considered the main healer, but Scrapper (engineer), Firebrand (guardian), Scourge (necro), Tempest (elementalist), and Renegade (revenant) can all heal as well. Some of them depend on who you're healing and whether or not they're people who stand in the fire and expect to stay alive, as well as what content you're doing, but they all work. Even warrior and mesmer can heal to a degree, the only class that can't really heal is thief.

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@"castlemanic.3198" said:The guardian as a whole is easier to play than the elementalist as a whole, which extends to their elite specialisations as a whole. I'm not sure why you strawmanned that and also intentionally made a misleading argument, since the tome of resolve provides large aoe healing fields as well as a ranged aoe heal too, but instead you focused on either the skill 1 of the tome of resolve or the mantras (or maybe even both).

And you're saying I'm the one putting out bad information? Maybe I should have specified that Firebrands specialise in more frontline based healing where tempests can provide healing from afar, but there's also the water overload which requires a not as large aoe healing centered on the tempest, plus the healing shout which is centered on the elementalist, plus the tempest weapon the warhorn (if you choose warhorn and a main hand over staff, which I personally wouldn't) has one limited ranged mobile healing spell and another close ranged healing skill for water, and guardians as a whole have more ranged healing capabilities, with the staff and the trait empowered symbols, the healing teleport, sanctuary, and other things I'm sure I'm forgetting.

As someone who has healed with firebrand, the small aoe cone has been very effective at keeping other frontline players alive, alongside all the other healing capabilities, including other firebrand healing skills and other guardian healing skills too, the ones you conveniently forgot in order to make your strawman argument.

......

This person is asking about healing. Heal FB is harder to play than heal ele.

Tome of resolve? That thing with a 4o second cooldown and about 3 uses? Yeah no.

"Guardians as a whole have more ranged healing capabilities." Hilarious actually. Seems you're very, very interested in maintaining your headcanon that FB is the long range healer of this game, so I'll leave you to it.

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@"Embered.5089" said:If you're meaning to become a healer in casual PvE, there isn't really one. GW2 does not have a trinity system. Only raid builds are sometimes specialized for such teamwork, and as the others said above, the ranger - druid specialization - is the "healer". But if you're looking to play as a healer from day 1, there is no such thing.

You make take healers in the ow even necro is amazing for ow healing.

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@"Hannelore.8153" said:just a tip to other posters, when a new player asks for help to play how they want, do not say "you can't do it" or "it won't work". Players are not immediately born fully-grown into the end-game content of this game.

To OP:The dedicated healing class is Druid (Ranger subclass, requires level 80 and Heart of Thorns). If you want to heal at the early levels or if you have no expo, then create either an Elementalist or Guardian, both of them have very strong healing builds when spec'ed for it.

Of them, the Guardian is probably easier to play. but is sometimes rendered into a buffbot by their support builds.

So giving bad advice for the sake of being nice? That seems like a cruel thing to do. And in any case, it is the other way around. A healer is only viable in end game, a new player who wants to enjoy the game will become extremely frustrated with a character that isn´t good for anything and will probably even have issues in story instances. I´d rather go for a short "you hurt my feelz!" instead of ruining the game for a newbie.

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Healing in GW2 is way different from healing in other games. In other games usually you use the party bar to pick who you will heal. Some skills will let you heal all your party. Even though you use the party bar you may be pulled toward your healing target some. GW2 healing is different you are not able to use the party bar except to see who needs help. Healing skills are more direct to individual players or AOE type. There are a few direct ones, but you have to pick the player on the map to get to them to heal them. This takes way more skill than using a Party bar system just so you know what your in for.

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The Core Tyria/GW2 wasn't designed around having a healer, so you will find generally little use for playing one, at least as a primary healer. That said, you can hybrid it by trying to both do damage and heal for example. It can be a bit tricky to get the stats right, but it will make many things fairly easy (if a little bit slower). Just don't neglect your damage.

On the whole, once you get familiar with the combat system, most of open world Tyria gets pretty easy, which is also why most people don't feel the need for a healer for that content.

Dungeons and Fractals are what we call "Instanced Content", where you usually enter with 5 players to beat it, these tend to be harder than open world (variable), and a Healer can be more useful in these, especially with pugs or with a friendly group. Just avoid groups/LFG that advertises for "Speed Run" or something similar (they want max damage only).


Regarding classes, try out all the ones recommended here, and see which one you like the feel for. Most classes can be built into a "support" role, but each class do this differently. The most obvious ones are Guardian and Elementalist, both have healing/support built into their profession mechanics (Virtues for guardian, and Water Atunement for Elementalist). But other classes can also do healing, like for example a Warrior using shouts and a trait that changes how shouts work to heal allies.

Don't be afraid to ask questions, of people in game, on the forums, and the best thing you can do to start with is find a friendly guild to play with and answer questions for you. Once you decide on a class, find someone that plays that class and ask them about tips. Try ALL the weapons available for that class, get a feel for each of them, they determine the play-style a lot in this game. Then ask for advice on which "skills" and "traits" you should aim for to start with, with a focus on heal/support, and secondary damage.


All of these replies might sound very intimidating if you come from other MMO's and wanted to play a Healer here. And even if you technically don't need a healer for most of the content in the game, if you find a group that want to play with a healer, it can definitively work. I've played in groups/dungeons where people had so many different builds, so I ended up as a "tank", and another guildie ended up as a healer/damage, and the rest just went straight damage after I got everyone attacking me. It worked, but most players prefer to just nuke all the enemies with damage before they can fight back, which also works.

If that is how you want to play, find other players that would like to play the same, and don't give up!

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I'll try to be more complete, not like "This is meta, That is meta, all others are not worth it":

All classes have support variants. Some are quite adept at healing and others tend to be a bit more clunky.

As for heavy classes:

Warrior Clunky healing, niche usesis clunky with heals based upon shout, The warrior shout heal build was a thing in 2012-214 in WvW where hammer wielding warriors could heal and cleanse conditions via shouts and CC enemies The warriors warbanner could res people and banners can be traited to give aoe regeneration. The shout heal builds is mostly dead. This build was mostly surpassed by revenants HoT specialisation (Herald)

Guardian Very good melee healing, good sustain possible. acces to a lot of other buffs including protection, AOE healing pulsestends to be a nice support clas with a lot of options for healing, It wields a traitable aoe heal for 5 ppl, can use signets to up it's healing power and provide an AOE slow pulse heal, has weapons for melee and range that provide healing and the elite specialisation from PoF (the firebrand) can use a tome for heals. All in all a dedicated melee support class for heals, It's use tends to be more WvW oriented. Mace with focus and staff are it's heal weapons. Occasionally with runes removing conditions on shouts.

Revenant Very good healing on any location you choose.tends to be a healing specialisation when using ventari. They can place a tablet and heal on it's location. I know this can be woven into it's HoT specialisation herald where it can provide boons as well when heals are not directlly needed. Staff tends to be their heal weapon. I've seen revenants in PvE , and in WvW, but it's not the most common build, not by a long shot.

Medium classes

Ranger Very good healing BUT weapon is line based with no splash.can be used heal in base, druid or soulbeast form with a definite preference to druid. Druid staff is is a heal weapon and the mechanic related to druid will support it well. Soulbeast can use jacaranda as healing pet, and warhorns tend to be very usefull for buffing. DRUID is meta healer and buffer in PvE, Occasionally seen outside PvE with runes removing conditions on shouts. Rangers have acces to water fields , more so with staff.

Thief (niche) difficult to usecan heal when stealthing allies. I have rarely used this as the thing is you cannot attack when stealthed as you'll be revealed, and when skipping stealthing is good BUT when done properly you will not NEED healing. No dedicated healing weapons.

Engineer (-cannot state a good use pattern-)can AOE heal somewhat using fields and blasts. I am no engineer fan and I'm willing to admiut this is the most I can tell you about engineer. no dedicated weapons, but can use it's medkit and toolbelt system. Has acces to a water field.

Light classes

Mesmer (niche)can heal albeit a bit clunky. It can boon very well. I find no real use in healing mesmers, and it has no real dedicated heal weapons. as booner it has some use as tank build in raids (PvE or WvW)

Elementalist (probably then best ranged healing ingame. very looked down upon, not versatile in buffing. very capable)is very well suited for healing in base and tempest form and to a degree in weaver form as well. Most skills regarding healing are in water, mesmer hs acces to water fields and substantial amounts of blasts even in the water traitline. Auramancers (tempoests spealisations can also provide aura's for furether regeneration and heals.Old base builds often used water specialisation with fire and air and allowed an AOE healing field and water skills can b used to good effect, weaver can use water as well and in some cases it might be usefull te weaves soem water skills through the rotation. I prefer staff as healing weapon but multiple weapons can be used, staff is just the most versatile in my opinion. Elementalist has found it's way into WvW and somewhat in PvP and PvE. Occasionally with runes removing conditions on (tempest's shouts)

Necromancer ( Niche build. can be very fun)can heal people with their AOE lifesteal buff, with an AOE heal doubling as a res speedup, and transfusion a trait doing AOE lifesteal and health distribution to allies, You do NOT need a target for transfusion to work. with base necro this is an effective AOE burst heal, but not sustainabl;e, focus offhand and staff marks give some regeneration. Support necro is a very capable build for WvW, but unsuitable for PvE in most cases. It has a lot of acces to temporry health buffs (sort of shields)

I play healers on Guardian (PvE/WVW), Ranger(PVE/fractals/raids), Elementalist (WVW/PVE/Fractals/raids) and Necro (WvW/(PvE).I still have my old shout heal gear, but I tend to run spellbreaker on warrior in WvW instead of shout-heal

Just do your thing, try to make a hybrid build if possible so you can still dish out some dps.

GEAR

Stats worth looking into:(for PvE)(Base) Magi healing(+), vitality and precision (META)(Base) Zealot power(+), precision and healing (NICHE)(PoF) Marshalls power(+), healing(+), precision and condition dmg (NICHE)(PoF) Harrier power(+), healing, concentration (meta/niche)

(for WvW)
(Base) Apothecary Healing(+), condition dmg and toughness (Niche)(Base) Clerics Healing(+), power and toughness (Oldschool/ Niche)(HoT) Minstrel Healing(+), Toughness(+), vitality and concentration (Niche/meta)(HoT) Crusader power(+), toughness (+), healing and ferocity (Meta)

Most often used sigils:Superior sigil of Transference (PvE) (+10% outgoing healing)Superior sigil of Water (meta) (heals on hit (30% chance))Superior sigil of Benevolence or Superior sigil of Life (WvW) (added outgoing healing or more healing power)

Most often used runes:Superior Rune of the Monk. (PVE) (aquire via: Ascalonian Catacombs dungeon)Superior Rune of the trooper (WVW) (removes condition on shouts) (usefull on war, grd, rng, ele.)

Most often used food:Delicioous riceballs (+100 healing, +10% outgoing healing)

Note 1: Combining good healing with good DPS is nearly impossible. Hybrid builds can be used. but you'll allways trade DPS stats for supporty stats....Note 2: Don't get frustrated , this game is pretty selfsustaining with regards to heals, BUT I find most groups in fractals and raids use healing preferring druids, but more open groups will accept guardians, elementalists and revenants as well. In PvE Openworld healers are not that much needed but noone would mind you bringing one. WvW uses a lot of healer/bunkers, to support these in pushes through the enemy lines heals and boons are widely used.

SO in the end there are places for healers and with more versatility then just rangers....

Good luck on your search!

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@PaxTheGreatOne.9472 said:Engineer (-cannot state a good use pattern-)can AOE heal somewhat using fields and blasts. I am no engineer fan and I'm willing to admiut this is the most I can tell you about engineer. no dedicated weapons, but can use it's medkit and toolbelt system. Has acces to a water field.

To clarify on this (good breakdown, btw!), engie is more medium heals and stacking regen. Scrapper is also the main spec for heal engie as it has access to the Bulwark Gyro and the function gyro ability. It is mostly close-ranged but does have long range heals/water fields through the Med-Kit, Elixir Gun, and Mortar Kit. If you take the Supply Crate elite instead, you can heal at range with the Med Pack Drop toolbelt skill. A lot of it is standing with the group and spamming your first med kit skill to keep everyone topped up since unlike a druid, you don't need a target to heal people with your basic attack.

I play heal scrapper in raids and T4's and it's solid. I do use harrier's instead of a combo of magi and minstrel so my healing power isn't as high as it could be, but it's still a legit healer. It actually pairs well with a druid in raids -- druid can do big burst heals and bring spirits, scrapper has a load of sustain and their subgroup should take 33% less damage for 15 seconds every 20 seconds. The function gyro can also be used to revive allies at range every 20 seconds instead of the 60 seconds and skill slot that Search and Rescue does.

Plus scrapper has access to multiple condi cleanse abilities and combo fields if conditions are a problem. With the Purity of Purpose trait, you can actually supply people with numerous boons in condi-heavy areas and bosses. (Soulless Horror is actually funny because the scythes and tormented dead corrupt all boons to conditions, then you change them right back into boons)

And with how kits work, you can quickly swap between them and your weapon as needed and not worry about getting caught with the wrong one at the wrong time. It actually means you can focus on doing some damage if your team doesn't need active healing. You won't do a lot, but it's an option if you get bored when people don't need your assistance.

(It's also just plain fun to shoot mortars and mines at people to heal them. It's true friendly fire)

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@steki.1478 said:All classes are build for it, but depending on game mode and content, some of them will be strong, some just viable and others useless.

The only classes who dont have any reason to heal allies are warrior and thief, but even they have some aoe healing sources.

Thief has by far the worst healing potential, War can actually be pretty strong heal support if you spec properly for it. The strongest healers are Core Ele, Ele Tempest improving on that, Firebrand, Druid, and Revenant (Harald gives more boon support but Renegade gives max might/alacrity uptime with much less effort so YMMV which is better. I personally prefer Renegade for this because the Heal and Elite skills of renegade legend are very strong heals for a party that delivers a lot of packets of damage.). There are some good things to be said about Engi healing potential as well, but it's harder to play to that potential. Chronomancer well/mantra healer can be pretty potent healing while offering like... 99% uptime of every boon in the game if slotted in to full Harrier... Thief can... shadow refuge things, and grant regen...

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@"joneirikb.7506" said:The Core Tyria/GW2 wasn't designed around having a healer, so you will find generally little use for playing one, at least as a primary healer. That said, you can hybrid it by trying to both do damage and heal for example. It can be a bit tricky to get the stats right, but it will make many things fairly easy (if a little bit slower). Just don't neglect your damage.

On the whole, once you get familiar with the combat system, most of open world Tyria gets pretty easy, which is also why most people don't feel the need for a healer for that content.

Dungeons and Fractals are what we call "Instanced Content", where you usually enter with 5 players to beat it, these tend to be harder than open world (variable), and a Healer can be more useful in these, especially with pugs or with a friendly group. Just avoid groups/LFG that advertises for "Speed Run" or something similar (they want max damage only).


Regarding classes, try out all the ones recommended here, and see which one you like the feel for. Most classes can be built into a "support" role, but each class do this differently. The most obvious ones are Guardian and Elementalist, both have healing/support built into their profession mechanics (Virtues for guardian, and Water Atunement for Elementalist). But other classes can also do healing, like for example a Warrior using shouts and a trait that changes how shouts work to heal allies.

Don't be afraid to ask questions, of people in game, on the forums, and the best thing you can do to start with is find a friendly guild to play with and answer questions for you. Once you decide on a class, find someone that plays that class and ask them about tips. Try ALL the weapons available for that class, get a feel for each of them, they determine the play-style a lot in this game. Then ask for advice on which "skills" and "traits" you should aim for to start with, with a focus on heal/support, and secondary damage.


All of these replies might sound very intimidating if you come from other MMO's and wanted to play a Healer here. And even if you technically don't need a healer for most of the content in the game, if you find a group that want to play with a healer, it can definitively work. I've played in groups/dungeons where people had so many different builds, so I ended up as a "tank", and another guildie ended up as a healer/damage, and the rest just went straight damage after I got everyone attacking me. It worked, but most players prefer to just nuke all the enemies with damage before they can fight back, which also works.

If that is how you want to play, find other players that would like to play the same, and don't give up!

To clarify this further- The game's combat is built around Competitive PvP, and de-emphasizes the Trinty power dynamic to enable more types of builds. Group dynamics operate very similar to MOBAs in concept, where you don't have hard slotted Roles that "need" to be filled, but different combinations of builds can employ different types of strategies on the fly to cover their weaknesses and multiply their strengths. Optimal Comps might exist, but they're still vulnerable if the other side knows how to counter them. Each class has a set of traits and skills that play into Self-sustain, which combined with Dodge rolls, make up the bulk of your personal defenses. This is an intentional design choice to ensure a player personal skill, and grasp of their build are the driving factors for character performance. Despite there being a defined "meta" template that most people follow, the game itself allows for a lot of build experimentation, and thus a lot of emergent synergy between skills, traits, classes, and even group comps.

To that end, Guildwars 2 works on the concept of Damage, Control and Support as a form of soft trinity..... and most classes can mix all 3 of these into a single build to varying degrees of potency. Damage is self explanatory. Control is there to pressure or suppress an enemy, and disrupt their defenses. Support is a mixture of Buffing, Anti-Control, and a relatively small proportion of healing. Because the game is more action oriented, with low thresholds for lethal damage and a strong focus on damage avoidance over mitigation, Healing exists to recover from combat mistakes, while the defenses collectively exist to reduce and/or prevent bursts of incoming damage. Despite the high availability of personal healing options, including each class having at least 1 dedicated burst healing skill, they can't be relied upon to carry a player (or other players) through any type of encounter.

This is why GW2 tends to put emphasis on Damage, as eliminating an enemy reduces their threat level and damage potential to 0. The faster you can do that without dying in the process, the better your odds for survival. PvE in this game is all over the place in terms of Encounter design.... most correlating to different periods in the game's Development life. Despite its age, GW2 hasn't hit a design equilibrium where its completely formulaic (WoW being a prime example of a perfect formula for what it is, and has trouble being anything different). However.... it also means they've tried multiple different things to see what sticks, and much of that content is never revisited by the Devs despite advances in other areas. Its sad, but unfortunately a reality of their limited Dev resources.

Going back to Supports. How you invest into Support builds depends on what game mode you're playing in.

For open world and story, there is a strong emphasis on damage being most important. This was done to dismantle "all tank" builds that were popular in early testing, as they could reliably beat difficult content at the cost of speed. With some of the rewards for Dungeons being pretty hefy, it could be worth running a tanky build with low damage, and taking an hour; compared to taking a glassy build that could clear it in 30 minutes, but only had a 50/50 of success. Not to mention Tank builds could solo dungons with enough patience, since there is no time pressure. At any rate... Open world mobs tend to be glass cannons, and are most threatening due to their numbers. Vets, Elites and Champs change this rule, gaining large amounts of endurance (most in HP), and increasing their damage per hit. Vets and Elites are otherwise identical to normal mob, and are more vulnerable to control skills due to how much longer they can last in a fight. Champs take this a logical extreme, and gain a soft immunity to Control skills, making them impossible to completely suppress. In its place, control skills will decay a Defiance bar ( known commonly as the Break Bar), that when "broken" stuns the Champ and opens a window where they take increased damage.

This seems to ignore support on the surface... but in practice, most open world builds run "in-line support"... skills which benefit you personally, but can also benefit others around you. Which brings us to Group Events. The game's loot system works of the idea of every player getting a personal chance at loot, so there is no competition between players for any given drop. The only requirement for a player to get lots of loot during fights is "tagging" mobs with at least a small amount of damage. This one small difference changed the entire community dynamic, and openly encourages players to work together to kill things quickly, maximizing loot potential and/or Event success. Classes with Strong in-line support tend to be the most popular classes among advanced players, because enchaining the power the group (even in the chaos PUGness of open world) usually has stronger gains then enhancing only your personal damage. Theres also a smug sense of satisfaction in knowing you made other pugs slightly less useless, or made a clutch recovery in one of the more difficult fights. They're also very appreciated in small scale situations (like Hero Point challenges), because it stands out a lot more. That said.... with the exception of highly organized groups, you should never give up too much personal damage to run stronger support. Generally players will take offensive builds, and add support almost exclusively through Traits or skills..... mostly because running supportive stats are a difficult juggling act, and the loss of personal damage makes you more dependent on other players for even simple fights. This is why Ele and Guardian are often recommended for Support oriented players, because they can easily blend strong support skills into their combat builds.

In organized game modes (Raids and WvW), theres more reliability in what types of builds players can bring, allowing for better strategies based on Group composition. Full support builds are much more welcomed here, because other builds can cover down your vulnerabilities, as well as you being able to maximize either Buffing capabilities or Group sustain against incoming damage. Less organized modes don't have that reliability, thus why a decent level of personal performance is something you need to retain.

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@gateless gate.8406 said:

......

This person is asking about healing. Heal FB is harder to play than heal ele.

Tome of resolve? That thing with a 4o second cooldown and about 3 uses? Yeah no.

"Guardians as a whole have more ranged healing capabilities." Hilarious actually. Seems you're very, very interested in maintaining your headcanon that FB is the long range healer of this game, so I'll leave you to it.

I don't know enough about the game to know if you're right or wrong. But man...you sure do come off arrogant and pretentious in your posts.

There's a way to disagree and and argue an opinion respectfully and tactfully you know?...

Bad information and bad control over your own biases = bad. I don't like bad. Not to mention the person arguing against me was hardly respectful and tactful. I usually choose to give back what I get.

Not gonna argue back and forth with you, but you came out the gate on the attack (at least from my perspective). The person (castlemanic.3198) who responded to you was understandably defensive because of the way you attacked their post.

Again...not here to argue back and forth, but maybe you should re-consider how you approach disagreements. By all means if someone comes at you, you're more than free to respond with the same level of nastiness. But from where I'm sitting, you were the initiator.

castlemanic.3198 seemed to be genuinely trying to help. If he/she was incorrect in some of the information, you could have let him/her know in a way that wasn't essentially calling them an ignorant dummy.

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@"tizodd.8310" said:Not gonna argue back and forth with you, but you came out the gate on the attack (at least from my perspective). The person (castlemanic.3198) who responded to you was understandably defensive because of the way you attacked their post.

Again...not here to argue back and forth, but maybe you should re-consider how you approach disagreements. By all means if someone comes at you, you're more than free to respond with the same level of nastiness. But from where I'm sitting, you were the initiator.

castlemanic.3198 seemed to be genuinely trying to help. If he/she was incorrect in some of the information, you could have let him/her know in a way that wasn't essentially calling them an ignorant dummy.

Hm that's a good point, didn't even notice it was the same person -- but the point still stands that he's passing out wrong information to a new player. That's the worst type of player to give wrong information to, as they don't have enough experience/knowledge to recognize it as false. Honestly I just used that quote in my initial post as an example of the poor information in the initial posts; notice I didn't quote him or mention him by name.

As long as we're handing out unwanted advice candies, maybe you should reconsider what to spend your time and effort doing, and what each person's individual goals and priorities may be. As I said, I don't like bad. When it comes to internet debates with strangers, my not liking bad takes priority over the fee-fees.

An additional perspective: If someone comes to you in an emergency and DEMANDS you give them whatever knowledge you happen to have on topic X,then it's understandable that whatever information you give them may not be accurate. Now, that's a very rare situation. And it certainly wasn't this situation. If you don't know what you're talking about and no one is pressuring you to give answers, and you are in no way obligated to give answers, the LEAST you can do is not spread misinformation. That is in fact your responsibility, as I see it. And if you decide to start spreading your misinformation, you should certainly not be offended when people correct you or tell you to stop outputting misinformation with little regard for your fee-fees.

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