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Easy to use wvw roamer build?


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@aaron.7850 said:I have tried Pistol Dagger condi thief.. but for the life of me I can never seem to connect Shadow Strike on moving targets.. it just slashes through the air and I am left a sitting duck after that.

If you are using a core/daredevil build you should be able to steal/swipe and then Shadowstrike.

If you are using DE it takes more practice/coordination but it can be done with practice and using Dancing Dagger to slow them down.

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Here's my one trick pony build.

No, it is not good in actual 1v1 fights.Yes, it can kill very easily and is very easy to use.

You're going to have a hard time in actual 1v1's unless you play like a giant pest repeatedly Stealthing and camping, playing it like a Shadow Arts Deadeye. But if you're +1ing or playing with a small group it is quite good. Because of the very high armor, you can take a lot of punishment that often comes with jumping in on small group fights, but will still spike very hard. With Ferocity as high as it is, guaranteed criticals from Stealth, and relatively high Power (higher with Bloodlust), you can quite easily get 10 - 15k Backstabs while still having over 3k armor.

Don't @ me Thief mains, I'm aware of the shortcomings of this build, but it's good at what I designed it to do- handle a beating in group fights while still having high spike damage.

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If you have enough cds when entering the fight you shouldn't be a sitting duck cos you can dodge roll, use autoattack occasionally, go into stealth and burst and then have another try at shadow striking when the opportunity is there.

I usually use stealth to get close (preferably right behind them where their camera angle is more inconvenient to react) and burst, if they just stand there get easy shadow strike, if they get a bit too far away or dodge then use dagger once if it lands just run them down for shadow strike, if not use stealth and repeat.

I'm also always trying to fight close to them in general and continuously forcing them to turn their camera around by getting behind them cos it disorientates them and makes landing shadow strike easier. If I have 2-3 tries at this, blow my offensive cds, I'll consider just blinking away using shadow refuge / dagger storm (which I try to save as long as possible) to disengage.

Tbh a lot of the time (maybe 33% of the time?) players are just bad and they'll stand there trying to cast stuff in which case it's easy to just burst while walking at them and get a casual ss, and the 33% of the time players are just better than you as a newer player.. well they're just better and you just have to get better in general- that's how I see it anyway.

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A friend asked for mine a short while ago so I thought you may appreciate a copy/pasta. The videos showcasing it in action are from quite a few updates ago, however not enough has changed for that to really matter on how this build works. As long as you know what to avoid (and are adept at avoiding them) then its only inherent weakness is other Thieves - mainly D/P or other stealth-camping weenies. Though a Target Painter will give you the edge you need there, at the cost of incessant whining from your victim.


-Open with Mark, skirmisher's shot 3 to 4 times to trigger M7. Use stolen skill to gain stealth, DJ to dump Malice and deal chunk damage. If DJ misses, don't spam skills, shoot one or two spaced Skirmisher's shots in between your auto attacks just to make it so you don't get full initiative, wait for reveal to fade, gain stealth again by dodging, stolen skill, or elite and DJ again.

-Mercy is very often used offensively even when not stunned, it refills initiative when you are having a hard time landing DJ, and gives you immediate access to Mark again (damage, heal, interrupt, 3 boon steal, poison, weakness, vulnerability, might, fury, swiftness, vigor, and quickness (quickness only if it has been 20s since last rifle-wielding mark due to Sigil of Celerity)

-Smoke Screen is used immediately as a preemptive defense vs ranged projectile enemies. If you are not being attacked by ranged projectiles, it is used as soon as a melee player enters your space. It provides excellent mitigation on a 1s pulse unblockable AOE blind, all Skirmisher's shots fired through it will carry a blind, and 20% of auto attacks will carry a blind. If you are getting overwhelmed and your smoke screen is active, you can Rifle 4, Death's Retreat, to get out of melee range and gain 3s of stealth

-Shadowstep can also be used offensively to gain unobstructed line to the target, see this video at 35 seconds in to see how I noticed that the 2nd enemy or his clones would block Death's Judgement, so I Shadowstepped immediately after gaining stealth to fire from an open angle:

Here is a general video that is long enough to showcase damage, defense, reactions, repositions, etc:

-You'll notice that I target clones and use DE Mark. This is intentional as the mark refreshes when the target is killed/destroyed. Clones have low hp - power Mesmer clones are destroyed just by the mark alone, and it gives initiative, regen, might, fury, vigor, healing(Mug), and potentially resets a cooldown w/improv. Condi/tank Mesmer clones take one mark and then one F2 (stolen skill). This strategy allows for multiple Mugs to heal you up and refill your initiative.

-When projectile hate or line of sight is preventing you from doing Rifle damage, immediately swap to S/P and use Sword2, Sword3 to port in, immob the target, and then chunk their HP with pistol whip. Generally you will need to sword2 again right after pistol whip is done to avoid counter-pressure in melee range.

I also have a variant copy of this build that uses anti-toxin runes and two rifles, both with sigil of energy and sigil of cleansing. Your damage and hp are slightly lower, but you're extremely resilient against condition-based opponents, which is why I didn't list condi thieves as one of my build's weaknesses.

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