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Harbinger Feedback Thread [Merged]

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There are only 2 choices in playstyles for harbinger as a DPS spec, either camp shroud/maximize blight to make use of the damage traits or quickly pop in and out of shroud to minimize blight stacks and maintain some semblance of survivability. Using blight as a risk-rewards system is a fun mechanic, but maximizing it and playing as a true glass cannon only works for button mashing against preprogrammed AI (PVE). In actual combat (PVP and WVW), this playstyle is not at all viable; the inherent lack of active and scalable defenses on core necro combined with the fact that Harbinger's traits and utilities don't help with this issue means that playstyle will never be viable in its current state. I've found that the other playstyle can work really well (survivability and damage wise) but why pick a class and completely avoid it's defining mechanic? 


Blight having 25 seconds in PVP/WVW scenarios is just excessive; why do I have to wait 25 sec after beating an opponent just to get this debuff which no longer serves any purpose off of me? Additionally, it fells bad to have 0 way to manage blight. We already have the concept of trade-off skills with corruption skills. The reason corruption skills are viable in combat scenarios is that we can manage the punishment. Blight needs to have a shorter time window, faster ramp up and ramp down time in stacks, along with a way to better manage stacks. Literally the only way to manage stacks is to sit and wait while your LF pool drains.


Another issue with this class is its LF management. We lose LF for being in shroud and to gain blight, lose LF out of shroud to heal lost health, and lose LF for losing stacks of blight (yes, you do lose LF for stacks of blight even if your health is full). Even when I built for maximum LF gain and healing (regen, lifesteal, etc), the LF management was still a pain regardless of  my playstyle. 


I'm not going to beat the dead horse that the elixir skills suck for many reasons (everyone else beat me to it), but I will say that the Vile Vials trait doesn't work consistently (as in it doesn't always function). The delay in the effect (slow + vuln) happening after you're done casting the skill, combined with the small radius, and the fact that the slow duration was reduced in competitive gamemodes way too much lowers this trait's usability. As a way to make elixirs more defensive, this trait dropped the ball. There is 0 reason to trade off having one of the other two traits that benefits you for stacking blight for this trait in actual combat.  


My last complaint would be the Cascading Corruption and Approaching Doom GM traits. Why are the radii for these skills so tiny while having a long 3 sec interval? Have you guys not learned your lesson at all from why everybody universally thinks Locust Swarm is a joke now? These two skills while being easy to access, have very little to no impact in actual combat. These traits do not feel worthy of GM traits at all. Spiteful Spirit and Lesser Enfeeble are the closest comparisons I can make to these traits and while they have been nerfed to the ground, they are still way more useful and impactful than Harbinger's 2 GM's. 


Overall, Harbinger doesn't feel like the risky, glass cannon, hit-n-run love child of necro and thief. For actual combat, players are forced to invest so much into survivability and sacrifice offensive power, that this class just feels like a worse core. Why would I willingly play class that forces me to juggle and sacrifice so much to reach the same levels of survivability and damage that core and the other especs can easily reach with far less effort?


TLDR - Blight balance exceedingly poor in actual combat, elixirs need to go back to the drawing board, 2/3 of GM traits suck

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While shroud and pistol skills are great, elixirs just feel incredibly boring and unimpactful

I can echo that. The elixirs needs to go back to the drawing board. Plus they are inferior to engineer elixirs which can be thrown.

This feedback is specifically for WvW. I have 1000s of hours in WvW, command daily and play every class, and often main necro.   Harbinger provides no unique niche in this content. It is a s

Round 2 of critique:


1. Blight with Shroud feels like a non-mechanic.  If you're in Shroud long enough to build up relevant stacks, you're not taking enough damage out of shroud for it to matter, thanks to the constant drain on your life force all the time.


2. Holy crap is this spec tanky with just a little bit of Vitality investment.  It's not difficult to hit 900/second regen out of Shroud with just Celestial gear, let alone anything else with Vitality on it  Of course, this encourages you to stay out of Shroud, meaning you never build up blight stacks.


3.  Harbinger's Shroud feels great to use, especially with the pulsing Quickness.


4.The spec almost demands Eternal Life in Soul Reaping to be traited, as otherwise you are extremely starved for life force if you're taking any damage at all.  It's easy to swap it out in PvE events with tons of mobs dying.


5. Pistol is just meh as a Power weapon.  Works all right for condition damage.  If the intent was for it to work as a Power weapon, it needs a higher coefficient on the auto-attack.


6. Elixirs themselves suck and are boring.  Been playing with a bar full of them and have only actually used the elite, the stunbreak (which easily could have been swapped with Spectral Armor/Walk), and rarely remembered the Quickness one was on my bar.  Vile Vials shows some promise, especially in competitive modes.


7.  Two of the Grandmasters are garbage.  The pulsing damage+ Cripple and Torment+Weakness just don't do enough when you tend to only be in Shroud a few seconds anyway.  Even the prolonged Shroud builds don't tend to want to hug their enemies, which is what's required for these traits to do anything.


8. As mentioned before, Blight overall feels like it was tacked on to punish anyone who wanted to use Harbinger Shroud and otherwise is a non-mechanic.  More involvement with Blight in the overall kit would be welcome.


9. Please tell me the Elixir icons are just placeholders.  They're terrible.


Suggestion: Reduce the out-of-Shroud drain from 5% to 3%.  This will help the spec be less starved for Life Force and also reduce the insanity of its health regen.

Edited by Drarnor Kunoram.5180
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I have mixed feelings on this one...

I felt the shroud abilities were great! Very powerful... but... in regards to your normal attacks with the pistol/dagger or pistol/focus... the damage on them felt a little... underwhelming. Even if you put the trait line on to reduce the cooldown, I still felt the pistol was nothing more then something you used to build up your lifepool again. (Meaning you'd always have to rely on shroud to do any real DPS)


The elixirs were okay, but I agree with others... they felt very lackluster! It was like pressing my index finger down on an actual piano in a row... I mean... yes I love exlirs, but for every single utility slot? I felt like some actual aesthetic's that physically did something around your character would be more useful! Like for example creating clouds of corruption which you could then use as a combo field to fire through or gain aura's if you jumped through with a shroud ability.


You could then add in all kinds of extra mechanics to cripple, blind, freeze, knockdown your foe simply by drinking an elixir when the enemy is standing nearby you, or heck even fire your pistol through them (more combo fields)! That's even more fun! These are just some idea's... after all they are elixirs, so use your imagination! But... to just drink them &... that's it? Boons? Ergh... not overly exciting!


Here are just a few more idea's of what could potentially be done with the elixirs... >> snake cloud (cripples/posions/weakens enemies), carnivorous insect cloud, (bleed/slow/blind), acidic cloud (vulnerability/torment) & my absolute favorite, sub zero elixir cloud! (Freezes foe's/knocks down/chills), there ya see, that wasn't difficult, all you'd need to do was create a trait that would reverse the effects of the elixir & instead of providing boons could be used offensively! Something like >> Mad Alchemist << or >>Insane Alchemist << you could even make it so that these clouds damage you & your allies too lol... that'd make things very interesting! But otherwise... not too bad so far! I hope to see changes on the elixirs though... Cheers!

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Honestly Elixirs need a complete redesign and overhaul, other games have tried health sacrifice design skills and classes before and have had to can the idea because it negatively effected the amount of people playing the class or use of skills, sacrificing health for power sounds neat but when it comes to necromancer the elixirs I feel should be turned into throwables, it would fit the theme more of harbinger as throwing potions that either buff or debuff the enemy or apply conditions sounds far more fun than the current. Blight as well could use some reworking as I said cause sacrificing health is a failed mmorpg concept that many games have given up on. Though then again blight doesn't feel well worked into the design of traits or class name itself. This elite spec is definitely far from ready, cause like I said health sacrifice design has been attempted before by other mmorpgs and it never goes well, and besides you at arenanet i'm sure you have better more fun and engaging ways to make elixirs fit the necro/harbinger theme. Also please work on pistol offhand if necromancer is goin to have pistols as access, then one would think off-hand pistol play would be a thing.

Edited by sniperman.1738
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   How much health has been capped due to Blight should be better visually represented on the HP bar, it's currently difficult to properly determine at a glance. From my perspective, the best way to to do so would be to make it similar to Barrier. Have a dark green or some other noticeable colour rise from the bottom of the HP bar, it will give the player a better indicator as to what their current max health is.

   Elixirs feel like they need some tweaks done to them, but I don't know to what degree, as I haven't actually used them much. Their utility icons should get looked at though, they all look exactly the same, just palette swapped; while it makes them easy to figure out which is which, they're boring to look at and I forget they're even on my utility bar.

   Other than those minor grievances, I'm very glad with the harbinger spec so far. It has good trade offs between traits and the other elite specs. The playstyle is different, unique and fun to play. I'll very likely swap my scourge to harbinger, come EoD release.

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To me, Harbinger has felt the most underwhelming of the 3 new elite specializations to me, the sounds are so-so, I had hoped for some more impactful, deep sounding skills, but they are also not horrible.
My biggest gripe are the flask skills, each having pretty much the same animations and sound, it feels very boring and flat and in pvp I am sure I would not be able to differentiate between the 5 of them.
Not to mention is it just not fun to listen or look at with all 5 being the exact same, even after hours of playing scourge I still always love popping my elite skill or sand swell, they are fantastic to look at, fun to use, nice sound design..

But these, I have been bored of by the first minute of playing it.

Adding to that, the pistol skills also feel very bland, 3 different pistol skills and yet all feel the same, the animations dont feel new or refreshing, not unique to the necromancer at all, shooting things does not feel satisfying, but instead very flat. Rather disappointing.

Edited by mondmadlin.5120
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Feeling lazy?  TH:CR?  Read the bold.

I haven't played in a few years, but I have been around since GW1 Prophecies and have played GW2 off and on since beta.  I have played ~3,000 spvp necromancer games. 


-Power?  Don't bother.  Absolute trash.  Might as well just play base necro for those juicy shroud1 crits.

-Condi? Dhuumfire is putting out work.  It will be nerfed for HB.  I'll probably switch to Eternal Thirst when it does for the infinite sustain.  I'm finding no reason to go pistol over scepter.  I like pistol3, but the other two skills are boring as kitten.  Both the animations and the effects.  Why torment?  We have an entire spec in scourge that encourages torment.  Pistol should have been an off-hand weapon dealing confusion/poison (a necro using a pistol? Sounds confusing as kitten).


That's all I have for now.  I'll edit this post if I think of anything else.


Oh wait, the elixirs.  Jesus kitten I forgot they even existed.  I have nothing to say besides I wish they didn't exist. 

Edited by Ashur.6403
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I kind of wish the Elixers offered more of a variety of effects.  I get its supposed to have the ability to play into a more support oriented role, but they are basically Risk, Anguish and Ambition are just flat up "gain boons." We can toss Promise in there too to be honest. Bliss and Ignorance at least offer something else. Maybe Anguish could instead be changed to offer something a little bit more interesting than just Swiftness and Quickness?


Also maybe some sort of way to play with the Blight, like a trait to remove some of your blight when you use your healing skill or something could be fun.. or perhaps allow your heal skill to remove some blight instead of granting it. However, I do want to say I'm not a necromancer main so these might not be issues for other players.

Edited by fuzzyp.6295
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Played Harbinger for about an hour on golem - feels really boring. Got to 36k cdps. Power build is just straight up not good. Only 22k dps for me. Don't know why Anet pushes this duality where there is non. You can probably drop all the top row traits for something new and condi or support oriented. Or buff power.


Elixirs are just buffs and there to get blight, nothing more, nothing interactive about them whatsoever. Don't know if it's a bug or not but blight from elixirs and blight from shroud is different. Each has it's own duration and sometimes blight from elixirs expires in shroud and shroud stops giving any blight for 5-10 seconds. Maybe it should stack in duration also or maybe it should start it's duration once and then only stack in intensity.


The rotation felt really bland. You use elixirs, plaguelands, blood is power, dagger 4, pistol 2, shroud 2 3 times, then repeat. In shroud only shroud 2 is useful for dps purposes. I think shroud 1 should have combo, maybe it will be more fun to watch. Maybe shroud 5 should have some conditions on it.


Overall I feel scourge is much better and fun at this. Why handicap yourself to deal 5-7k more dps when you can also support your group with barrier? Even though -50% HP in PvE is a non issue, because dodge.


On the PvP side though - I really like it. Mobility is awesome! Damage is a bit too much, I think (for sPvP). Still need to learn to play it though but at least it's fun. Feels like it can be new roamer type of spec. On par with mesmer or thief.


Though not without some issues - Life force generation feels weak without Elixir of Promise. Mainly because shroud just gets wasted by chip damage. Maybe it should not be using % of shroud and rather use the exact amount to heal? Pistol 3 cast time feels too long. It's easy to interrupt, yes. Maybe not 3/4 cast time but 1/2? 


Also harbinger has no chill - so no interactions with many chill traits in core, feels weird.

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So.. imho this elite spec feels like it is a mix of several unfinished ideas.


1-Firstly, what purposes for those basic icon looking elixirs? It feels strange to use elixirs as blight sources instead of, I dunno, shooting them on group to make conditions growing range aoes? 

-> this can be better as mechanic, you shoot those elixirs on hround create poisonous/chill/fire/torment aoes, if the harbringer pass in those, it gain boons, if a non harbringer pass in those, it gets conditions.


2-Secondly, is a shroud, that has as only purpose to reduce your health and increase blights with time useful and interesting? No need of health decreasing shroud.

-> No. This specialization don't need a shroud. It needs a holosmith like Heat Bar but with corruption/blight instead of heat. The current five skills of shroud would appear as F1-F5 above that blight bar. The more blight you have, the more devastating and powerful skill you can use. Using one of those F skill remove the corresponding amount of blight. Let's say: F1= 5 blight, F2 = 10, F3 = 15, F4 = 20, F5 = 25.


3- What is high risks for high rewards? I see none. This is what would be high risk for high reward: Each weapon skill inflict to the harbringer never expiring conditions. Elixirs AOES give boons as long as harbringer stay in those. With condition/blight, Healing skill is a corrupting skill giving you more conditions. The only way to clear conditions is to use my Blight energy bar I said in 2, using one of its skill remove all blight and conditions.

The more conditions you have, the more boon you have: quickness, fury, might.... any boon apart health regeneration and condi damage protection. Like fractal says, no pain, no gain! 

The user would be afflicted with condis, losing health because of them but gaining also advantages like accessing five powerful blight energy bar skills.

Having more condis and blight on you could increase the efficiency of elixirs, more condis on foes and boons on you...


Microsoft Paint illustration:



Reddit post to see better:


Edited by hugo.4705
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24 minutes ago, Aizenfaust.2708 said:

Though not without some issues - Life force generation feels weak without Elixir of Promise. Mainly because shroud just gets wasted by chip damage. Maybe it should not be using % of shroud and rather use the exact amount to heal?

If your missing health is less than 5% of your life force, you only lose what you need to fully heal.

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Harbinger auto attack chain, or lack of, pistol skill #1 is highly unsatisfying. The skill is too basic. There is no chain nor no epic feel. Very disappointing. GW2 could benefit from better chains. When other skills are on cooldown, pistol skill #1 looks pathetic. Look at Lost Ark for example, a lot of epic looking skills that are impactful and very destructive looking. Without epic visuals and impact, the game suffers greatly. Very unappealing to new players.

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I like the design of the shroud. It is very interesting that you do no longer get a second health bar and use it for healing instead. I also do like the pistol and condi orientation of the spec. As many others have pointed out, the elixirs are very uninspired and I would have been hoping for more. Thematically, an agressive use (throwing them like grenades) might be better. However, other suggestions in this thread, like transformations or messing with the blight machanic, are also good.


Another idea to consider, as a fan of the witcher series I would like the idea of getting the debuff after the duration expires. The buff could be something unique (not a boon). Lets say, 100% crit chance for 3 seconds, but after it expires you get blight and cannot crit for 5 seconds. That would be a cool and very agressive short term boost.

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From a casual perspective, it is difficult to distinguish between the Elixir icons. They basically all look the same, especially when contrasted with the different icons for Engineer Elixirs. 


Also, the Blight mechanic visual (-X in Green below the health) is not as visually intuitive about the base mechanic of the specialization. It may be better to show it more like Barrier, but possibly on the bottom of the health orb to distinguish Blight from Barrier. 

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I've played nearly 2,000 hours on my Necromancer and over 6,000 hours across all my characters. Most of this is focused on PvE, completing story, map completion, achievement hunting, and raiding. These are my thoughts with this bias in mind:


1) I like the departure from the classic unkillable playstyle. Reaper and Scourge both have insane survivability. The Harbinger actually feels distinct in the set. Its trading in that survivability for something else. However, Negative #1 follows up on this.


1) The Harbinger does not feel like its getting enough reward for its risk. The traits allow you to focus on Power, Boons, or Condi, but none of them are good enough.
1a) The condi build is quite strong, but since it is condis that means it takes longer to kill  lower health targets. You need to ramp up every time you focus a new target. While your health remains lowered due to the corruption, you are starting off each fight weaker and weaker.
1b) The power build just does not have the damage, neither base necro nor the pistol are geared toward bursty power damage. Which is what you need to have in order to kill targets and survive with your lowered health pool.
1c) The boon build does not do enough. To take the boon build you give up too much damage from either other build to make it worthwhile. There isn't enough in this option to make it worth taking over any other boon provider, it doesn't bring anything unique to this role. 

2) Elixirs are boring. They do not provide any meaningful use like many of the other necro utilities. You drink them, and that is all. There are not lasting effects from them to make use of. It does not feel fun to use an elixir over the other skills the base necro can utilize. They also do not feel like they match the spirit of a necromancer. The preview of the Harbinger talked about making no clean kills. Well, the Elixirs do not reflect this. They simply do not match the imagine of using noxious, corrosive bullets.

3) Elixir art does not fit. The art style has clearly changed, and on its own that isn't bad but the elixirs sitting on the necro bar next to the other skills look very out of place. They don't have the same aesthetic feel to them.

4) The pistol has no identity. It does not do anything for a power based build and is outclassed by scepter for a condi build. There's just no reason to use the pistol at all.


1) Power Build: Remove it. We don't need to have a power, condi, and boon path for every specialization. The power is so lackluster here, that its far better to simply remove it and give the condi or boon paths more options to play with. Let the options be between what kind of conditions you want to use or how to use them. Maybe one path can make use of torment and another prefers poison. Or one path aims for steady application of condis over time and the other prefers to apply many at once before waiting for a cooldown. 

2) Boon Build: Add some form of healing. At the moment, the Harbinger's healing output is entirely selfish. This means that if you want to spec into a boon build, you cannot do anything else. The other boon roles all can provide something else that the Harbinger cannot.  Boon Firebrands, Scrappers and Mesmers provide either healing or damage on top of the Quickness. If the Harbinger wants to fill a niche, then it needs to bring something more to table than just quickness.

3) Elixirs: The elixirs could be so much better if they provided some outward effects rather than just some minimal boon application. Drinking an elixir could cause the Necro to begin letting off  some sort of harmful energy. Perhaps after drinking an Elixir, the Necro radiate negative energy within a certain radius, pulsing conditions for a short duration. Another Elixir could be one meant to be thrown rather than consumed, similar to a vial of acid that causes harmful effects to the creatures in the area it lands. These types of Elixirs are much more interesting and impactful in a fight than simply getting a boon or two. If the Harbinger has harnessed its powers to use corrosive bullets,  why can this corrosive power not also apply to Elixirs?

TL;DR - Remove power traits, make elixirs feel more impactful, pistol's damage is subpar. 

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My feedback from someone that plays only WvW.



Harbringer is FUN.  Getting access to multiple cc's that's not fear, plus double leaps in shroud, it makes the class really enjoyable to play.  As a long time necro this elite spec definitely plays different than all previous specs, which is great.  I give it 9/10 for fun factor.



Now the pistol, it seems like a nice weapon for solo roaming, but it's too condi focused.  The most satisfying thing about pistol is the stun.  When you nail the stun, it's very deadly and satisfying af.  But WvW is full of reflects, and with pistol being all projectiles, I find it very hard to use it properly.  I've stacked torment on myself, even stunned myself due to the amount of reflects readily available in WvW.  I would like to see one of the pistol skills being ground target instead of projectile, it will help those of us that live in WvW.  I rate the pistol 6/10 due to its heavy condi focus and projectile based attacks that are unreliable in WvW.



This brings me to the next sadge issue, torment.  The recent torment nerf completely borked this elite spec on arrival.  This is a spec that feeds on torment, but in WvW everybody's moving, so you're accepting that your torment will deal 50% less damage which just feels really bad.  I understand Harbringers are parsing well in PvE because you can stack on bosses and npc's often remain stationary.   But this is where I feel the devs had a PvE bias when the torment nerf went in.  Torment change was a huge buff to PvE, but a huge nerf in WvW, and it definitely makes Harbringer not feel as strong as it should be in WvW.  Can we please get a torment split and give us the pre-nerf torment back for WvW, thanks.



The elixirs are... bad.  Short boons, long cooldowns, they're just very boring and there are so many other necro utils that should be used instead of elixirs.  The heal elixir isn't really a heal at all.  If you make it consume conditions, maybe it'll be worth it.  But as-is, you're just killing yourself using it.  Maybe make the heal elixir cleanse blight?!  That's a thought I had.  As someone who plays in an organized guild squad, there's nothing in elixirs boon sharing that makes it worth taking a boonsharing Harbringer over another boonsharing class.  One thing that will help here is when you take the trait to share elixirs, you allow the stunbreak and condi cleanse to be shared as well.  If we can build a boonsharing Harbringer where taking elixirs allow us to stunbreak & condi cleanse friends, then it may be worth it.  I rate elixirs 4/10 right now, it needs a lot of work to be viable in WvW.  Consider putting a big corrupt on one of the elixirs.  Going from corrupt specialist in Scourge to virtually no corrupts in Harbringer hurts, it will make Harbringer harder to slot in as a meta class for organized WvW squads.



Harbringer shroud is definitely the highlight of this new elite spec.  The mobility is great, the float is A++.  However there seems to be a bug with shroud 5 float, sometimes I don't see the graphics for it and my skill goes on cooldown like nothing happened.  I haven't been able to reproduce it other than it happens often after I leap in with shroud 4.  I give Harbringer shroud 10/10.



As others have pointed out, the synergy with some traits are just not there, such as the fear traits.  This really limits your choices.  I feel people who build tanky condi Harbringers will make this elite spec feel overpowered in PvE and sPvP.  This will create an illusion that this spec is fine, or even op (people in spvp might as for nerfs).  But for WvW, especially in organized guild squads and zerg vs zerg, this spec is a bit lacking.  Condi, especially with the torment nerfs, do not work well in WvW group play.  As long as cleanse scrappers & tempests are a thing, and who knows what other elite specs are coming that can cleanse, the condi Harbringer builds won't work that well in WvW.  And if you want to build a power based Harbringer, you pretty much can't use pistol, which is sad.  One has to make tough choices in traits, with lots of sacrifices which I feel simply hurts the spec and its various viable builds.


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The harbinger felt a little underwhelming.
The pistol skills feel dull and uncharacteristic and the elixir skills feel like a cheap and boring option.
I would like to see some more different visual feedback when using the pistol and elixirs.
It would also help to read the actions of Harbigers in pvp or wvw.
The shroud choice of not giving you the panic button is cool but I don't feel the power boost reword feels worth it. At this point it feels squishy for no reason.
I don't like the martial arts themed movements since the Willbender already has that feel, it looks like a Harbinger in shroud is another monk spec but one that damages himself to acquire power.
Overall I didn't like the look of it but liked the idea of the skills mechanics

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I think it would be interesting balance wise if a trait spread the blight to nearby allies taking some of the burden off you and onto them a bit. It certainly synergies with a selfish-harbinger Necromancer. The toxic blight is literally spreading to friends and foe.


The green blight aura I think can be toned down a bit because in Harbinger shroud we have green everywhere and when Blight is high....green is still everywhere. We hardly see our character and their armor.


Pistol skill 2 could be a little more visually interesting or even different. There are already many rapid pew pew skills on a Harbinger.


I wonder if the heal skill should remove stacks of blight. Giving more healing room instead of adding to the blight problem.

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15 hours ago, ZeftheWicked.3076 said:

Good design, but poorly matched parts of it.

1. Base harbringer too powerful.
Why worry about blight at all if i can just mass murder anything in seconds with default health? If I can get the job done smoothly with comfy 33k health, why bother with blight?


2. Dhuumfire overnerfed - i can grab a reaper with Reaper onslaught and dhummfire with viper or other condi gear and you'll see 3-5k burning on up to 3 mobs. Here i got 1-1.4k burns with quickness grandmaster and dhuumfire. This is most likely one of many victims of above mentioned issue - base harbringer too powerful.

3. Blight suffers many serious issues.
    I. It's counter-intuitive to a necro identity. Necro is profession of attrition. The longer the battle drags on the better for necro. But blight reverses that. Catching blight puts necro in a "you done the hitting now run!" situation.

    II. Bad pacing. Blight lasts too long, while also seems to be applies bit too slowly. I can go and assassinate a target with shroud without gathering much blight and ergo paying the price for the risk (shroud abuse). Meanwhile if i accumulate too much blight i can't shake it for ages - a window of vulnerability is ofc a good thing, but 25s one is bit overkill..

    III. No stack management. You can apply it, but you can't ditch it in any way. No cushion/cleanse mechanics, no traits that let you customize blight application to your needs with appropriate drawbacks or rewards depending on player choices made.

    IV. Poor rewards for risk taken. 25% extra damage isn't that great of a deal for losing 50% of my max health on a profession that even with this spec is very short on god-mode defenses.

4. Healing skill is just bad.  1.9k health + 10% lf on a standard cooldown. Any core necro heal will overperform that easy. If this thing was 15s cd that would be undestandable, but currently it's a major underperformer.

5. Party quickness too easy. Elixir + Grandmaster trait. As a 6 years or so necro main i get my profession isn't about piano play, but there should be some degree of player skill needed to sucessfully output S tier boons to their party. You know so there's still some space between skill floor and ceiling for support Harbringers.


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Power harbinger sucks, if you want to do good damage you basically have to run full vipers condi build.


So, what we end up with here, is a full vipers condi dps spec, with just a little bit of mobility, that is quite tanky, offers some light passive support with the option to trait into more, that deals high damage with an outstandingly braindead simple rotation that anyone can pick up and play using a 900 range hitscan condition weapon.


That entire paragraph applies as much to scourge as is does to harbinger. It feels like the exact same spec in a different wrapper.

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12 hours ago, Acyk.9671 said:

Unfortunately for you and everyone in your situation, PvE shouldn't impact an e-spec design that much.

Staying alive in PvE is up to how you position yourself and your support. Anet can always reduce the impact of blight through numbers anyway.

Unfortunately for you and everyone in your situation GW2 is a PvE oriented game. Same as you can not call WoW a pvp game even though it has a solid pvp ground. 


Staying alive in PvE is not only positioning, quite the opposite, staying alive in pvp is positioning you need to make decisions fast, while you have more options and ways depending on your comp in PvE to stay alive and successfully do the content. BUT!! Every PvE player will choose the easiest way possible, Everytime you present them with options. The most basic example: when a boss is killed by overhealing the damage in raids or fractals, if harbinger can not be overhealed as long as they have to cut from their DPS to sustain, no one will want them in any PvE content. They killed elementalist as a DPS long ago. No one every said "I wish we had ele as a DPS" or you don't see on LFG "we need this spec, preferably ele" never ever. When I ask pug parties to switch to my ele they say "please no, ele means wipe they don't contribute to anything" even though ele could be used good in PvE content. As far as I understand you don't know anything about PvE content if you think it's that basic. We do not need classes more squashy than elementalist. Do you wanna kill a spec for PvE even before they were born, yeah that's harbinger right now.

Edited by Metalhead.5273
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First time actually posting on the forums...ever. I normally wouldn't, but I definitely want my voice to be heard on these elite specs. Hopefully I'll get around to doing Virtuoso.

Context: I'm a raider that plays a lot of PvE, sometimes plays WvW (when I do, which is typically every few weeks or months, I tend to binge), and has touched PvP only every now and again (played the 3v3 season, and before that, it's been like 2 years since I last played). I would consider myself a necro main, both reaper and scourge - if I need something done in open world, especially anything hard, they're my go to. I was actually very skeptical of Harbinger. I was hoping for hammer or shield, pistol seemed outlandish to me. I'm not sure what I was expecting in the shroud. 

Obviously, we've still got more time to spend with these elite specs and more to learn, so this is just a preliminary review of my experience as of the first day and thoughts may not be fully composed. I may have more thoughts later with more play testing.


Apologies if there are any minor errors. It's 2:50 a.m. and the brain and eyes are starting to get tired.

Traits: For the most part, I do like the idea of a point in each tier being for a different archetype. The big drawback here is the loss of some potentially more unique traits. That said, I think trying to incorporate power into Harbinger is a mistake and that those individual points could be used on another form of utility. I'd consider Reaper the go to for power, especially as we've seen it dive harder into that field and cut back on condi with Scourge's introduction. I feel Scourge and Harbinger have opportunities to go back and forth with each other as condi and support specs, each filling different niches for both of those archetypes. If we're sticking with having a power component to Harbinger, however, I would say give the power Adept a secondary component like the condi Adept has to make it feel more significant. For raiding purposes, I do like the condi Grandmaster, but I can definitely understand the pain point of it being melee when so much else is very much ranged. Also, it feels a bit much like Desert Shroud on Scourge, except that you have to trait for it. At a personal level, I like the condi trait options. I've not played enough with the power options to say much else on them. I do like the option of Harbinger being a boon support to contrast the Scourge's barrier/healing support.

Utility Skills: I agree with the general consensus that the Elixirs are bland. They definitely need some flare. They cover all of the bases and aren't bad in that regard. One or two to supplement a build definitely isn't bad in my book. I don't really know how to improve upon their lackluster given that they aren't really BAD per se, just...meh. Ambition (elite) is crazy and I do love it. I feel like Anguish could do something else since we have the Quickness Grandmaster trait. I really don't have much helpful feedback on the Elixirs, unfortunately.


Harbinger Shroud: I absolutely love the feel of skills 1 and 2. 3 and 4 feel out of place on what feels like a ranged dominate specialization. One or the other would be fine, but having 2 movement skills feels silly, to be frank. I'm not sure what aspect to tweak on it, but I feel skill 5 could use some sort of adjustment.


Pistol: Having initially been very skeptical, I'm pleasantly surprised with how pistol has been handled. I'm not sure what kind of flare people want from a pistol. There's only so much to be done with a gun. It honestly feels nice to be able to swap main-hands (scepter and pistol) rather than off-hands or no swapping at all. A different weapon might have been in order, but as of now, I have no complaints.


Blight: This definitely seems to be divisive from what I've seen. As of the time of writing this, I don't have any significant qualms. However, I did expect to see more interaction between Blight and skills/traits. The only means of stacking are entering shroud and using Elixirs, if I recall. And the only means by which they fall off is by duration. I feel like their should be more interfacing with the mechanic in some fashion, ranging from certain tiers of Blight affecting skills/traits like Holosmith with Heat, to more varied ways to add or remove Blight, with removing having some sort of cost or bonus, depending on how that aspect is viewed.

Miscellaneous: While it is certainly fun to see DPS in the 35-36k range on the golem, the drawbacks to meet that end feel far to heavy when compared to getting 31-32k with Scourge, which is infinitely safer and has a lot of built in utility without additional investment.

Edit 1:
Traits: Deathly Haste, the quickness grandmaster, while I like it, is very reminiscent of Reaper. I think one or the other could use more identity. When thinking about what I wanted to see from a boon spec for Harbinger, I wanted to see alacrity, not quickness. 

Edited by Roshyu.2987
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umm .. my opinion about it in pvp and then later my suggestions

1: sorry but as cool as the concept of blight is..  i think its not balanced at all and i think the blight system is why most players even dedicated necros who loved this class wont play it!
the issues with blight that i saw is.. .  the 2% life reduce for 25 seconds is way too much.. . it makes it not even worth to use the shroud ..    because at 25 stacks you lose 50% of life with 0 defensive on the class you just die.. 

blight 2: the not only the 2% is way too large should be 1% at max or atleast add reduce to trait but it also reduce your life force along side the life..   and the life force already struggling ..     it means that quickly your life force is down to 9k max
simply again not worth using shroud..  

bligt 3 : 0 ways to remove /clear blight ?  bad really bad..  and 25 sconds is way too long.. 

2: gun damage as power is just .. weak?   you certainly add there options and traits for power build but the weapon does basically 0 power based damage.  and necro already got bad weapons.  also why 1 pistol and not 2 pistols or some other 2h weapon ?

3: not sure if its just me but it doesnt interact with some life force traits?  i also think that outside of shroud the pistol wepon really lack life force..   basically only 1 skill that grant life force on pistol and not too much either like barely any on 8 seconds cd ..  if you build power you probably just not gonna use it and you gonna be stuck again with just axe+focus with no other weapon good for power . 

suggestions . 

1: reduce the blight drawback of HP reduce from 2% to 1% or add that to the power version of the first blight damage 1/2% since condi is more tanky due to item choice and traits.    and the condi damage per blight also get poison on shroud 2 which is quite nice..     and power version is just 1/2% per blight add there HP redue from blight is halved ! 

2: greatly reduce the duration of blight from 25 seconds to 10 seconds or add option to clear blight and reset it back to 10 or make blight removed when you come out of shroud !  to make you just use wisely the shroud time but that you can come off and reset blight  . 

3:find a way to seperate the life force reduction from the life reduction and fix life force traits

4: increase the power damage on pistol  if you want power build this pistol is 0 damage and its just bad..  low life force regen low damage its pure torment based weapon.       so please improve pistol for power build. also please consider allowing off hand pistol aswell !   


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