There are no less than 8 different professions in the game, and each one is entirely different. Because of the vastness and massive difference in mechanics of each profession, they can be considered as different worlds or modes of play altogether.
In this guide we will go over the Ranger profession. This profession is focused around the unique pet-keeping element, and the usage of ranged weaponry to destroy opponents in a fashion never before seen.
We’ll go over the skill types, have a look at the pet concept of Guild Wars 2, check the equip-able weapons, the various gameplay mechanics of the Ranger, and the general way of playing the profession.
The Ranger profession is equipped with the talents and skills that set it massively apart from all others, as it has the ability to deal with any type of given situation.
If a time comes where all other professions falter, the Ranger will still look as powerful as ever because of its unique traits.
What makes the Ranger so unique is the ability to keep pets. Pets in Guild Wars 2 are highly customizable, coming with evolution levels, specific skills depending on the pet type, and leveling in strength and vitality according to the Ranger itself.
All about Pets:
A Ranger has four pet slots. Two slots are for land pets, for battles on-land, whereas two are for underwater.
Pets are charmed by interacting with juvenile versions of the species you wish to charm. Pets’ base health, armor, and damage are based on the level of the player that owns them. The Pets can be managed from the Pet Management Window [K].
A Ranger can only have one pet active at a time, but it can swap it with another (provided the character has charmed multiple pets) during combat, by clicking the arrow icon to the right of the Pet skills.
There are up to 12 different types of compatible pets, consisting of animals like bears, sharks (yes, sharks!), moas, devourers, spiders (eek!), lizards and more. There are a few further sub-divisions of the pet-types as well which may or may not influence the characteristics of the pet. For example, a polar bear might have an Icy Roar, while a brown bear might have a Fearsome Roar.
Pet Controls and Modes and Unique Skill:
A Ranger will be able to manage his pets with a set of commands and modes of approach for the pet.
The modes are the behavioral settings of the pet. These are of the following types:
- Aggressive–Attack what I am attacking
- Defensive–Attack enemies that attack me
- Passive–Don’t attack
The commands are specific commands that will make the pet act right away. These are:
- Attack -Attack my target
- Heel – Come to me
- Stay—Don’t move
In addition to modes and commands, each pet has a Unique skill that depends on the pet type. This unique skill should be treated as a normal part of a Ranger’s skill rotation, and hence the pet should compliment your selected skill types to match your build.
In addition to the art of managing and controlling pets, the Ranger has the following skill types:
Traps – Traps are utility-based skills that can be placed at the location the Ranger is standing. When an enemy enters a trap, it is triggered, and will cause some kind of an effect. For example, a Spike Trap will cause an enemy to bleed (a condition) when it steps on to it. For the sake of maintaining gameplay balance, only one trap can be active at a time.
Spirits – A variety of spirits can be summoned by the Ranger, which influences the area around it. This influence may either be offensive (hence focusing enemies) or defensive (hence focusing allies and the Ranger). A Spirit wanders away if the Ranger goes too far ahead.
Playing As the Ranger:
The Ranger profession is a very reliable class-type overall. As stated earlier, the Ranger has the capability to handle almost all types of situations, which makes it one of the most flexible and versatile professions in the game.
Apart from pets, the Ranger is primarily a ranged character, as the name suggests. This means that the classic bow-and-arrow combo is ideal for this profession, though you can even equip Axes and Swords on one.
The easy pet management and simplified skills of the Ranger make it an ideal choice for newcomers. Veterans can also enjoy the luxury of having highly evolved pets by their side.
Though the Ranger is best with a Long or Shortbow, there are multiple types of weapons you can equip. These are:
- Main Hand - Sword, Axe
- Off Hand – Axe, Dagger, Torch, Warhorn
- Two-Handed – Greatsword, Longbow, Shortbow
Though there are plenty of options, the general recommendation by any expert Ranger player would be to use Longbows and/or Axes
All the abilities will have a large range with the Longbow, and the Axe also gives great types of AoE and multiple enemy-hitting abilities.
Apart from pets, the most important things that the Ranger has to look for are the Cripple and Bleed conditions. This allows for good CC and an ample amount of DoT.
When it comes to Utility based skills, the Ranger has a large amount of options available, ranging (interesting pun) from support type to ones that enhance the utility aspect of your pet to ones that are purely offensive and can put down enemies in a jiffy.
All in all, the Ranger is an excellent choice for starters. Even veterans enjoy the unique profession for its pet management attribute and the large variety of roles that it can play.