A lot of information has been released this past year about the various professions in Guild Wars 2. There are now four known professions out of the eight that will be available at launch. We know details about the Elementalist, Necromancer, Ranger, and Warrior. We’re still missing the other four which includes one scholar, two adventurer, and one soldier profession. While we’re waiting let’s go ahead and take a look back at everything we’ve learned about the four known professions.

If at any time you want more details about a specific profession, please see our list of profession articles.

Profession Basics

Each profession has one unique game mechanic that separates them from the other professions. For example, the Warrior has adrenaline. Various actions grant the Warrior more adrenaline which passively boosts their attack power or they can spend it all on one big burst skill. These mechanics are designed to make each profession different and guarantee a unique playstyle for each one.

Not only does a profession determine what skills are available to you but it also affects which weapons you can equip and which skills are affixed to the weapons. For instance, a sword in the hands of a Ranger will give you Slash and Serpent Strike while a Warrior will get the Sever Artery combo and Pommel Strike. Each weapon type offers something different to each profession.

Professions are not linked to any specific race so far. That means we’ll be able to pick a race that we find visually appealing while choosing which class we wish to play. That’s really good for those of us who want to be the large monstrous creature but cast all of the powerful spells without suffering for it.

Elementalist

Guild Wars 2 Elementalist Concept Art

The Elementalist seems to be very close to their Guild Wars counterpart that we currently know and love. They can change “attunements” which changes the skills available on their weapon. For instance, they can change from Fire (mostly DPS abilities) to Water (which gives them more control) while in combat. This gives them a lot of flexibility in battle by being able to swap out various skills but as a sacrifice, they are unable to switch weapon sets out during battle.

Elementalists get a lot of amazing spells to cast as well, like many abilities that place fire down on the ground. This fire can be combo’d with a Ranger who can light their arrows on fire as they fly toward the enemy or it can be used to sear enemies as they charge forward. Glyphs can improve spells that are being cast while Signets provide an effect when you use them and then a persistent effect afterward. Elementalists also get the ability to conjure weapons and other useful items.

Ranger

Rangers focus a lot on nature and ranged attacks. That doesn’t mean melee isn’t out of the question, but they truly excel from range. Their unique ability allows them to bring a controllable pet into battle. Unlike Necromancer minions, the Ranger can command their pet into battle. Pets also have their own skill sets dependant on what type of pet the Ranger is utilizing.

Pets aren’t the only thing Rangers will have to offer. They get a lot of ranged attacks like Spread Shot which shoot arrows in an arc in front of them. Like Warriors, they get “chain skills” which are three weapon skills in one slot that are used one right after another. They can summon spirits, much like in the original Guild Wars and set down traps which are triggered by when an enemy walks over them. They also can change certain abilities on their weapon through preparations.

Necromancer

Guild Wars 2 Elementalist Concept Art

Necromancers get a really unique ability called Death Shroud. Death Shroud can be activated either by using the ability or whenever the Necromancer is downed. Once inside of the Death Shroud state you get six unique skills and immunity to knockdowns. Necromancers also have a new resource called Life Force which is gained when enemies are killed nearby or through certain abilities. Death Shroud consumes Life Force when it’s active and will end once it has been depleted. This means if Death Shroud was activated when the Necromancer was downed then the Necromancer will return to a downed state once it has been depleted unless they have killed someone.

Returning to Guild Wars 2 is “wells.” Wells are area of effect buffs (for allies) or debuffs (for enemies) placed directly under the Necromancer. Necromancers can also use Fear which causes the enemy to flee in terror which is one of their limited forms of crowd control. Minions also return but with many different rules. A Necromancer can only have one "set" or "activation" of a minion up at a time but no longer suffer health degeneration or require a corpse.

Warrior

Warriors are pretty much what you think they would be. Their primary ability is “Adrenaline” which allows them to gain adrenaline in combat. Adrenaline then acts as a resource which increases the damage of their attacks passively or can be spent on a single powerful burst attack. Each weapon that the Warrior can wield has a different type of burst attack that consumes Adrenaline.

Warriors can also carry banners into battle which give buffs to nearby allies. Much like Rangers, they can chain three abilities together on a single button. Use one ability successfully and the next ability replaces that button. Shouts return as well, which allow you to give buffs to nearby allies or debuffs to your enemies. They can also charge certain abilities by holding the button down and releasing it for a more powerful effect. Finally, they can switch stances which consume energy regeneration but provide powerful self buffs.

So far we know a pretty good bit about each profession. If you want more info on the various professions in GW2 then be sure to check out our Profession Portal while we wait to hear what the other professions will be. Otherwise why not come by the Ten Ton Hammer community forums and share your thoughts on your favorite profession or perhaps even which profession you’d like to see announced?


To read the latest guides, news, and features you can visit our Guild Wars 2 Game Page.

Last Updated: Mar 29, 2016

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Get in the bush with David "Xerin" Piner as he leverages his spectacular insanity to ask the serious questions such as is Master Yi and Illidan the same person? What's for dinner? What are ways to elevate your gaming experience? David's column, Respawn, is updated near daily with some of the coolest things you'll read online, while David tackles ways to improve the game experience across the board with various hype guides to cool games.

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