Each profession is completely unique, and has little to no resemblance with any other profession. This makes the class system of GW2 one of the most expansive ever seen.
In this guide we will go over the Guardian profession. The Guardian is a heroic class that embodies the traits of a Paladin. The profession’s traits are selfless, and the Guardians generally tend to play best in teams.
We’ll go over the skill types, virtues, the weapons, the mechanics of the Guardian, and the general way of playing the profession. For more help on Guild Wars 2 Guardian, read our Virtues and Guardian Builds Guide.
The Guardian is a team-oriented heavy hitting profession, relying on the heroic aspects of Courage, Bravery, Justice, Resolve, and more. With a strong will and the pure virtues of a brave fighter, the Guardian smites his enemies and protects his allies.
The Guardian profession may have been treated as a support class in any other MMO, but in Guild Wars 2 the Guardian is more of a Paladin with hard-hitting offensive abilities, and traits of a support profession.
Guardians are empowered by three virtues that grant them passive buffs and benefits in battle. Each virtue has two stages – a passive stage where it only benefits the Guardian, and an active stage (when the virtue is activated) that spreads the effect of that virtue to all other allies, but is disabled for the Guardian for 30 seconds. The virtues of the Guardian are:
Justice – Every fifth attack causes burning damage. When activated, all allies’ attacks cause burning, but the effect is disabled for the Guardian for 30 seconds.
Courage – After every 30 seconds your character is granted Aegis. Aegis is a boon that blocks the next incoming attack. When activated, all allies get Aegis immediately, but the effect is disabled for the Guardian for 30 seconds
Resolve – You regenerate health at a fast rate. When activated, all allies start to regenerate health, but the effect is disabled for the Guardian for 30 seconds.
For a detailed guide on virtues, read our Guardian Virtues Guide.
The Guardian has a number of skill types, which are given below:
Spirit Weapons – The Guardian has the ability to summon spirit weapons to fight by his side for a short duration. While the spirit weapon is fighting, it can be commanded to unleash a devastating blow before dissipating.
Symbols – The Guardian places symbols on the ground which can have a variety of different effects, depending on the type of symbol you have placed. Some symbols may inflict small AoE damage to enemies, while others may heal your allies. Some symbols can even do both.
Wards – A Ward is a marked portion of the ground that stops enemies from passing through it, while allies walk freely.
Aegis – Guardians are exceptional when it comes to Boons, and Aegis is a powerful one. Aegis blocks the next incoming attack on whoever has it activated.
Playing as the Guardian
The Guardian is by no means a support-only profession, which makes it extremely fun to play with, and more importantly very beneficial to allies. This profession is suitable for both veterans and newcomers, as its difficulty is easy, but its importance is also sky-high in a team-based game.
Like the rest of the professions, the weapon the Guardian equips determines your active ability set. The weapons that a Guardian can equip are:
Main Hand – Mace, Scepter, Sword
Off Hand – Focus, Shield, Torch
Two-Handed – Greatsword, Hammer, Staff
Swords allow a Guardian to teleport to a target to deal damage and blindness, and also to block projectiles.
Greatswords can be tossed at enemies and allow the Guardian to perform a jump attack, and also spin around and fire bolts in 360 degrees.
Simiarly, other weapons also give different types of abilities to the Guardian.
Most players who play the Guardian class will look for a defensive and selfless approach. This is, generally, the correct method for the profession, but it is utmost important not to overlook the damage-aspect of the Guardian.
Guardians are supposed to be alongside the Warrior profession in the battle – in the front-lines and first to engage the enemy. They are, along with the Warrior, meant to take the bulk of the damage. Therefore, the best thing for a Guardian is to have high defenses through heavy armor, and relatively fast attacking.
I highly recommend using a single-handed weapon for the guardian along with a shield. Not only does this make him/her look like a Paladin, but also gives the necessary weapon-based skills and speed that is required to be in the front-line.
What guarantees a supportive-offensive role of the Guardian is that fact that the attacking abilities are woven together with support ones. This also means that the Guardian should be the most active character in PvE and PvP games.
Because the Guardian requires so much attention, it is a fantastic profession for both newcomers to learn with and veterans to aid their team with.