Hello chaps, i've just hit Rank 60 in PvP and this has given me the confidence to write a short guide on my favourite pvp spec, the Terrormancer necro. I have played this spec quite extensively. I used this spec to get my Champion Phantom title and i've won about 220 matches on it i estimate. However, i'm no Noscoc or anything. I'm no genius at PvP but i think i have enough experience to write a basic guide.
1) The Build
I'm going to make it very simple for myself and just post the metabattle link with the build. I have tested numerous changes on this build to see if i could improve it but i just couldn't to be honest. I tried stuff like going for foot in the grave (stability in DS) wich can be awesome but i had to give up greater marks for that which is a no go in pvp. I actually made this change in WvW where i can use mobility and it isn't a nightmare if i miss a fearmark but in pvp i simply need it. I tried changing runes and sigils and even amulets but this build is simply the best.http://metabattle.com/wiki/Build:Necromancer_-_Traditional_Terrormancer2) Terrormancer vs X?
So, how does a Terrormancer do vs the various classes and what helps against each class?
I'm gonna be limiting myself here to the more metabuilds.a) Other necro's
-Power: a Terrormancer can do very well against a powermancer. You have more CC than him and except his heal a powermancer doesn't have that good condicleanse. Although this is a matchup that can be close i think the condimancer should win. A zerk necro hits like a truck so always watch out though. DS is his biggest weapon. So save those fears and dodges for when he uses his DS.
-Terrormancer: This is obviously an even matchup and is about skill. Very important here are Staff #4 (and offhand dagger #4) which transfer condis and timing your heal right. Landing those skills on the correct moment will often decide the battle.b) Engi
The cele rifle engi: A necro should always win against the meta engi. They simply dont have enough condicleanse and you should be able to take em down quite easily. Corrupt boon (one of the best utilities in the game imo) can be very important here as engies are often a boon heavy class. The only thing you rly have to watch out for is supply crate. Necro's are desperately short on stun breakers and can get CCed rly easily. When you see supp crate drop, make sure it doesnt land on you and you should be fine.c) Ranger
-Powerranger: In a 1v1 i think a Terrorimancer should do well against a Ranger. As soon as you get up close he's kinda fcked. Keep laying those condi's on em and keep him feared. Save the dodges for those dangerous GS attacks. If he stealths or knocks you back, go into DS. This will negate some of the dmg and you can then use DS #3 to fear em and then DS #2 to br up in his face again. At some point he'll pop his elite. There are 2 possibilities there. Either he uses Entangle which can be a dangerous skill. Necro doesnt have a blink or so (except wurm which can be a lifesaver here!) and getting out of the entangle isn't always easy. Try to have your heal or the staff #4 (or offhand dagger #4) to get rid of the immobilize and immediately get out of the roots or else they'll just ensnare you again. If the elite is Rampage as one (about 60% of the time imo) use corrupt boon and then it's over for him. This will convert that stability into a long fear and he's open for a chainfear now. Keep him feared and he should die swiftly.
Rangers are VERY dangerous in teamfights or even 1v1s if you dont see them coming. A necro hasnt got stealth or dmg mitigation so a Rapid Fire that you dont see coming can be a death sentence. Always try to keep an eye on inc players! This is important for all classes ofc but especially for a necro.
-Condiranger: A lot less populair but this can be a tough one for the necro. He usually has Empatic Bon (pet takes 3 condi's every 10s i think) which makes it hard to lay condi's on him. Just like vs every condiclass the staff#4 (and offhand dagger #4) and heal are your key skills here. He will use Entangle 80-90% of the time so prepare for that.d) Thief
1v1 thieves should be doable. They can be tough, don't get me wrong but if he isn't rly skilled you should win most fights. Condi's are good cause even if he goes into stealth, those condis will steal eat him up. The amount of AoE's u have on staff and scepter/dagger #2 and #4 are great for putting condi's on the ever mobile thief. Thieves often disengage when low so try to keep your fears for when he's low and about to get away. Thats the moment to chainfear and end the fight. #5 staff is great for getting thieves out of Shadow refuge. And when the thief is low and goes into stealth #4 DS is good cause it'll hit him in stealth. It doesnt do a lot of dmg but it's good to keep the pressure on. And #2 DS can be good to go after thieves that try to get away. A last tip is using #2 staff for spotting em. I often put a mark on top of me so when it gets triggered i know he's on top of me and i can dodge to deny the backstab.
Just like the ranger a thief is mainly a threat in fights with multiple people involved. If you don't see him coming, he can put large amounts of pressure on you and kill you fast. Possible things to do here are go into DS to mitigate the dmg, fear him of of you and as a last resort use Plague(also in 1v1). Plague gives you extra health but more importantly you can keep a thief permablind. This will negate 90% of his dmg and you can pop out of it when he's out of inittiative or cooldowns and start striking back!e) Guardian
-Mediguard: Quite an even match-up i find. Both parties can win if the other one makes mistakes. The guard has quite a lot of condicleanse, however they're all 1 time things with a large cooldown on them. Put a lot of condis on em and there's a good chance he'll panic and use too many of his cooldowns. Thats an ideal moment to strike. If he plays his utilities right though he's a considerable threat and his burst is enormous. Make sure you evade the GS whirl and possible other dangerous stuff. If you have to stay on point it's hard to evade his dmg but if you have some mobility options (larger fight or legacy of the foefire mid) you can run around and keep placing marks behind you to avoid most of the GS dmg. In a matchup vs a guard the "Greater Marks" trait is insane. It means your marks burn through his aegis and his focus #5. More importantly however, it means you(re the only class (i think) who can interrupt his heal. You have to be fast but if you time it right, your #5 mark can interrupt his shelter which can mean the end of the guard. Corrupt boon is important as guardian is a boon-heavy class aswell.
-Bunker: Not a real threat. he's annoying but he should be the last to focus and his dmg is ignorablef) Mesmer
I personally struggle with mesmers cause i don't know em well. I think it should be a fairly equal match-up though. Important here is to evade the heavy attacks like shatter/phantasms. Make sure you find the enemy mesmer quickly and keep the pressure on him. Mesmer is quite a squishy class and if you keep the pressure on him he'll be on the defensive most of the time and you should be able to take him down. If he goes into stealth DS #4 is a lifesaver. It dmgs him while he's in stealth and its great to take down his phantasms or so. If he has multiple clones running around i often end up with more DS than before is used the skill. Watch out for confusion aswell (a very dangerous condition as it demands you stay calm and cleanse it before using to many other skills). Staff #4 can be used here aswell. To help find the mesmer i either watch the movement or watch boons/mantras/signets the mesmer has on himself.g) Ele
D/D: This match-up is in favour of the ele imo. It's doable for the necro but it's not easy at all. Ele has massive amounts of condicleanse and high surv while still being able to keep decent dmg pressure. Timing corrupt boon and landing it is key. It can be a huge tool because ele is all about those boons. However, even if you land it an ele gets those boons back insanely quickly. Poison is a very important condi here as it keeps the ele's healing limited which is very important. So make sure to land that #3 staff and use your scepter autoattack to keep that poison up. Important for every class vs an ele imo is staying calm. I often make the mistake fo throwing in to many cooldowns when an ele gets low. Never forget an ele can swap to water attunement and get back to 80% HP in seconds. If he does that and you just threw all your skills on him, you're screwed. When he gets low, you should ofc push him and go for the kill but always keep in mind he can come back from the brink of death and prepare for that. Good thing is they dont have a lot of sudden burst so disengaging should always be possible.
Staff: A bit like the D/D ele. A lot more sudden burst so watch out for that but less versatile i find and easier to kill in general.h) Warrior
Last but definitely not least, the Warrior. Warr is pretty much your nemesis.
-Hambow: The worst of them all. This is greatly in favor of the warrior. It's doable but if both player are of equal skillevel, the warr always wins. As i said before, necro doesnt have a lot of stunnbreak or escape otions so a hammerchain is a huge problem. I have 1-2 stunbreaks (depends if i got my wurm up) and my dodges but if i didnt save them up im screwed. Quickly going into DS and using #3 (which can be triggered while you are knockdowned or stunned) can help avoid some dmg. Plague can help here aswell (see thief for details). Besides the stunbreak spectral walk can be used to return back to your original position when knockdowned or so and make sure he doesnt land that 2nd stun. The bow is much less of a threat and staff #4 is great to transfer that oh so familiar immobilize+6stack bleed back to him. Just like vs the ele try to keep poison up to limit his heal signet.
-Condiwarr: Easier but still tough and in the favour of the warr imo. Heal+staff #4+ offhand dagger #4 to transfer some condi's as usual. If he uses a shield, "Greater Marks" is great because you can fear him, even when he uses his shield #5. Keep poison up.
-Zerk GS warr, doable. Obviously evade 100 blades, except that no real special stuff.Extra tips on warr
A few extra tips cause warr is so dangerous.
-The most hated skill in all of Gw2 for you, is the warrs Berserker's stance. This skill is a nightmare. Why? It can't be stripped. You can't use corrupt boon against it or use Dark Path (DS #2) to convert or strip it as it isnt a boon. Not only does it stop you from CCing (which is alrdy a nightmare) it stops you from using any condi's on him whatsoever!!! This pretty much means that you can do 0 dmg to him. This all means that for 8s (10s when traited for it) the warr can go all out on you and htere is nothing you can do about it. This will demand your best kiting skills. In a teamfight simply get the hell away from him but if that's not an option (for instance you need to def a points) make sure to save thoe dodges to evade the most dangerous attacks (Hammer!) and make use of spectral walk. Use it to break a stun and run a round a bit, if he catches up to you use it again and return to your original position to buy you some time. You can use plague for the extra HP but you can't blind him so he'll still hurt a lot. If you manage to survive this onslaught you have a shot but he will have done considerable dmg and it's gonna be a tough fight.
-Zerk stance aside, a warr often has Stab on so use corrupt boon to deal with that.
-Important for every class against every class, but very much so for necro vs warr is that you watch his animations. Warr aniamtions are quite obvious so use that!
-Evade his Adrenaline attacks because if they land it, it cleanses conditions.
-Warr is a melee heavy class so the #3 on staff (chill+poison is great) to keep him at a distance and the poison will limit his heal signet.3) Your general position and play
At the start of a game go mid to put pressure on the enemy team. Stay on the side and move at the edges of the teamfights. You can use your staff to put some condis on multiple people but when you have a target start focusing him down. Keep at a distance and keep the pressure on.
When he becomes low, you come into action. Move in to chainfear (DS #3 fears longer when used close to the enemy) em and pressure him very heavily. DO this from within DS. A good combo is go into DS then #2 to get to him and slow him down. Follow up with a #3 for high dmg and control. Follow up with a #5 for more dmg and then keep lifeblasting him. He should go down quickly. Then you have to judge the situation.
If the enemy team seems vulnerable stay in the fight and keep pushing em, if they are still high HP, move out and start the process over again.
When the first teamfight is won, i usually move between mid and close (or far depending on what we have) and keep an eye on both points. I may push a point but i try not to do that too often (not alone at least) as help will usually arrive before you get the kill. If the teamfight is lost disengage or use plagueform to contest the point (usually i can easily contest till plagueform runs out) for the team to come back.4) Important moments!
An overview of a few moments for you to shine and what to do when those moments arrive!
-Enemy player(s) is down: First you should use scepter or staff #3 (only works when someone is on top of him because marks dont trigger on downed players) to poison the downed player, this will make ressing him much harder. Offhand dagger #4 is great here aswell. It blinds the downed so that his knockback/stun/interrupt doesnt trigger and your teammate can finalize the stomp. Plague can be used for this aswell. Either for keeping enemy players blinded so the stomp is safe or for stabilitystomping yourself (time it correctly, use plague and instantly stomp after). However, this is a pricey cooldown so dont use it blindly.
-Friendly player is down: Use your fears to deal with enemies trying to stomp (also corrupt boon if they use stability). Use plague to blind and protect your allies going for the res. You can help res aswell, if you expect a lot of cleave, go into DS to protect your HP. When you see an enemy come in for the stomp, interrupt your res and fear him.
-Lich: When the enemy pops a lich, you are invaluable. Corrupt boon will strip his stability and now he's available for CCing which should render him useless.
Same goes for plague but thats a lot less dangerous. When you dont have corrupt boon off of CD or you fail to land it, use Plague to counter hich lich. With plague you can keep him blinded and make those insane attacks pointless. Use dodge to move faster (you move slower in plague) when he tries to move out of your blindfields to catch up. And just keep spamming that #2
-Lordrush: if your team rushes the lord on Foefire, make sure you interrupt his heal with a fear. He usually does this at 33% HP. It's easy recognizable because he sticks his sword up in the air (much like a sentry or camp defender in WvW). If you dont interrupt him he'll heal a large amount so landing that fear could mean the difference in a win or lose for your team.5) Some final tips and tricks
-Wurm: This is an amazing skill and has saved me on so many occasions. Place it away from a teamfight so you can always get out of a sticky situation and recover.
THis can also be used to get to a point quickly (assuming you placed it there before) if you have to defend it. You can use it to teleport to the roof in Khylo. I also use it to escape an attacker. I'll place it next to me and run away, when the enemy gets to me ill pop wurm again. I return to my wurm and suddenly i have a nice distance between me and the enemy (this can be used to decap a point by luring the def away and then popping back to decap).
-DS might not be as vital as on a powernecro but DS is still rly important. So whenever you have some time and an easy target (a downed player you're bleeding out for instance) use staff #1 to generate some life force.
I hope you had some use out of this guide! If not as a terrormancer than as the opponent of a terrormancer! And i hope to see more necro's in pvp defending our class!