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New to HB or Guardian in general. Best Stats to Run in Open World and Fracs?

Haisse VI.8125

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As the title says, I need any recommendation what are the best gear stats I should run in Open World as HB? This has probably been asked before, but I am not going for a build like a damage dealer does. I am thinking of mixing some stats for my trinkets as HB. I know I can run anything, but it would be nice to have some damage without taking too long to kill a boss or mobs in Open World. I have harrier stats for both weapons and armor for some damage, but I am still undecided what stats to choose for my trinkets to run as HB in fracs: minstrel or magi? I have run zerker stats for so long in other professions and want to try running as support, so magi is better for fracs? I've heard that toughness can draw aggro in some cases in raids (I joined a raid training run once, so I'm not knowledgeable about it lol), and preferably, things that I can use in both without changing too much. However, does the toughness stat in minstrel draws aggro as well in fracs?


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Harrier for heal FB in PvE.

Minstrel for Heal FB in WvW.

Some Minstrel pieces can be used in fractals if you do have issues with personal survival. In raids the toughness from Minstrel needs to get managed by the squad: so not advised to be to high.

Your job as a Heal FB is to provide:

  • healing
  • quickness
  • might
  • fury
  • stability
  • aegis

Depending on the situation and fight.

The metabattle guide on this build is okay but gives a nice overview of which skills are used for what:https://metabattle.com/wiki/Build:Firebrand_-_Support_Healer

The only part I disagree with there is using FmW. No need to use that at all if the FB is half way decent since with 100% boon duration, quickness and fury will be capped on group. Might as well take Mantra of Liberation for stability, especially when/if the renegade has to deal with No Pain, No Gain in fractals. Using FmW on a heal FB just leads to one becoming sloppy in boon application.

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TBH, I kinda hate Harrier and love Minstrel. You have barely any damage-boosting traits and your go-to weapons don't have the greatest power-scaling coefficients, so your personal damage is always going to be rather low. (I suspect whether or not you bring signet-share, and how well you use it, matters more than what your personal Power is.). Outside of raids with their over-emphasis on Toughness tanking, I think there's very little downside to going full Minstrel, and it does compensate for a lot of nasty stuff the game may throw at you.

(Does Toughness lead to you getting focused in Fractals? 1. Not very often, in my experience. 2. You're probably the closest thing to the "tank" in a standard party anyway. You can take it!)

Regardless, absolutely don't neglect Concentration on any of your gear slots unless you're only running Fractals and have already earned ton of special Fractal swag to help you min/max it up to the 100% cap super-exactly. Your ability to keep boons on your party has a ton of impact on clear speed, and prolonging the duration of Aegis, Protection, Resistance, and Regeneration has great defensive value as well.

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