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Guardian Build Guide: Shout Support/Hammer/Staff

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January 13, 2014 - 7:29pm -- Lee B.
Guardian Build Shout Support/Hammer/Staff Traits

In this guide we look into utilizing the Guardians shouts with their potent trait Altruistic Healing to make a very tough and supportive roaming Guardian. Primarily this build is about assisting point holders or catching and keeping enemy attention long enough for back up. This build has ways of providing you every boon under the sun while shrugging off conditions and damage like it's no big deal, so it also translates incredibly well to WvW and PvE. With hammer you'll have okay damage but incredible control, and staff can further support that control or provide you utility through healing and speed. 

Please Note:  This build can be used in PvE by building Knight's armor and trinkets.

Guardian Positives and Negatives



Capable of surviving massive amounts of punishment

No huge bursts of damage

Transfers very well to PvE and WvW

Can be seen as a very selfish build

Remains a very flexible build for varying play types

Vulnerable to boon corruption

Incredibly useful for tournament play 


Guardian Traits and Gear

HSS Build

You are taking advantage of Hammer and Staff's ability to control and deal some pretty notable damage. Top this with Knight's runes and you combine the abilities to survive with a lot of control and damage to give your allies a strong foundation to stand on. Superior Runes of Lyssa back that up with some more damage potential and combos well with "Save Yourselves!" and Renewed Focus to give you an elite that is the most durable and provides great utility.

For traits we are focusing on Altruistic Healing. All of your traits are focused on boon generation and condition cleansing so that Altruistic Healing will be on constant use. Even Master of Consecrations, when used with Hallowed Ground, gives you constant pings of health via the stability that Hallowed Ground provides. These traits, of course, force you into a support role and you should gladly accept that role for your allies.

Please Note: Superior Runes of Lyssa can be replaced with Superior Runes of the Soldier for more sheer tanking ability and more condition purge for your allies. Consider it when you know you are going against an enemy that is spamming conditions and you need to help your allies just as much as yourself.

Guardian Skills

Guild Wars 2 Guardian Build

Please Note:  “Save Yourselves!” can be replaced with “Stand Your Ground!” for a much faster stun breaker and to combo more with Altruistic Healing. Hallowed Ground can also be replaced with Wall of Reflection to handle range better, or Purging Flames for another condition removal.

Guardian Why This build?

If you want a build that tanks really well and works even better with allies nearby then this build is for you. With Altruistic Healing, and your ability to stand and fight for long periods of time via hammer, staff and your skills, this build is a sheer beast when it comes to survivability. Top it off with a lot of control with staff and hammer and you are great at facing nearly any challenge so long as you have allies to back you up for it.

In PvP you are going to need to roam with allies or be a thorn to the enemy as you hold down a point long enough for allies to arrive. The important thing is that you are going to be a person that removes all those annoying conditions while catching the enemy so your buddy can knock them down. In a team fight you are going to be the turning force as you catch an enemy, who poked too hard, with your Line of Warding or Zealot's Embrace.

For PvE this build thrives when you need to teach a dungeon path or provide that strong point for your allies. You will be able to shrug off most issues that mobs throw at you and still hit hard enough to make an impression. There is nothing more satisfying then being that guy that saves your squishy friend's butt while tanking all that raw damage.

Guardian Gameplay

Roam with your roamers, bunker with your bunkers and most importantly make sure you are never alone while in PvP. You can handle a lot of issues by yourself but this build really shines and thrives when you are coordinating with a squishier part of your team. Case in point is in how can you heal incredible numbers if you are taking advantage of Altruistic Healing by throwing boons to your allies.

In PvE content you can run face first at most issues and just laugh as things try to whittle your health down. Especially if you are elbow to elbow with five party members while you're throwing buffs around like the might from Empower or the stability from Hallowed Ground. You will be able to sustain through almost all of your problems while still dealing some notable damage.

In almost all cases keep your hammer out. It's your control, your damage and your main source of protection through the auto-attack. On top of this whoever you are with will love you for your retribution stack or might stack through your blast finisher on Mighty Blow. Staff is mainly for a quick healing boost, on top of a little bit of control. Don't use it for a ranged option unless you absolutely need to.

Updated on 5/29/2014 to bring this build up to new build standards.


I am mike's picture
Submitted by I am mike (not verified) on

If you use 6 Superior runes of the soldier, each shout will remove a condition. So I use 3 shouts with this build for ultimate condition control.