Aug 122013

As I’m not one to dwell on the negative too long (although partial to revisit it frequently), I’m going to take a cue from the Guild Wars 2 Twitter account and share with you my top tips for Guild Wars 2.

Dodge, interrupt and mitigate

Relying on someone else to heal you is a great way to waste a lot of money on repairs, but most of your means of staying alive is in how you move rather than the skills you have. Relying on your healing skill will only help you til around level 35 and then you’ll be expected to dodge certain attacks. Practice until you get your timing right (the Daily Dodger achievement is good for this) on ranged enemies, and you can get out of circles most of the time.

Your other tools rely in stopping enemies from completing their attacks and from mitigating the damage from them. Interrupts (skills that daze, stun and knockback) are great for this, as are boons like Aegis, Protection, Regeneration and Vigor. Retaliation is useful too. Boons are something many new players overlook but they can make a huge difference to your fights and are one of the reasons why Guardians are loved so much.

Keep moving, rebind your keyboard shortcuts and stop clicking

You will swear at first and thank me later. WASD is evil, especially in a game like Guild Wars 2. Not that I’m knocking the keys themselves, but rather the actions bound to them by default. Every second you are stood still is a second you are making an enemy’s life easier and all that A and D do is hold you still while you turn. So do yourself a favour, rebind the strafe actions (Q and E) to A and D and enjoy not having to repair as much. This also has the added benefit of freeing up keys around where your left hand resides and one of my protips for any game is to not click your skills. Ever.


It takes a bit of shuffling to do but it’s totally possible to never click a skill again. By leaving 1-5 as weapon skills, using the reclaimed q and e for skill 6 and 7, and then making use of r, f and v to fill out the keyboard, you’ve got all the skills you need without moving your left hand much. Of course rebinding F means you need to find a new home for the “do everything” button, which I’ve found as G. And that’s meant moving all those dialog screens (guild, hero, friends, scoreboard etc) to the numberpad keys where they can be used when I’m not facing down someone who wants me dead. If that’s left you a bit bamboozled, here’s my keyboard layout in more detail. Use this as a base to work out what works for you rather than adopting it blindly, keyboards and hands vary wildly!

Be under no illusion that changing is hard and this takes a while to set up. But I can say I’m a better player for making this changes and I’m pretty sure you will be too.

Be curious…

Look at that view!

Look at that view!

…about what’s around the corner and about people. Guild Wars 2 is definitely a game for explorers and curious folks, who will be well rewarded for having a “what’s up there?” mentality. Racing to the finish will not help. In fact, you’ll be able to do more things by exploring.

Take Screenshots and Look Up

This kinda ties in with being curious. Tyria is beautiful and getting a bit of height can give wonderful screenshots. To get your character out of the picture, try using the /sleep emote. Likewise the skies and ceilings in Tyria are amazing. Look up frequently.

Get involved

The community for Guild Wars and Guild Wars 2 is (mostly) wonderful. People are friendly, creative and encouraging to be around, with a varied background of talents and hobbies. If you’ve ever wanted to try writing, there’s a plethora of bloggers around to help you get started and improve your writing style. Likewise for artists and musicians. Programmers get the full support of the API community too. All in all, if you’ve wanted to make something in your spare time, this is a great subject matter for finding like-minded people to help you.

For those who like talking face to face, there are lots of opportunities at gaming conventions to talk to other fans. One of which is next week at gamescom!


This is Infinite Light. It’s a named exotic, not a legendary.

You don’t need a legendary

No really, you don’t. Legendary weapons are nice if you like their look but don’t feel you need one to be cool. There are loads of named exotics out there that look awesome and are just as hard to get. Several are much easier. Same goes with armor; unless you’re a fractals regular, you don’t need Ascended gear and shouldn’t feel like you need it to be a good player. Guild Wars 2 is about your skill, not how awesome your torch is (though that’s important too!).

Join a guild that does missions

Guild puzzles and guild rushes are great content that shouldn’t be ignored because they involve finding a guild. Both require cooperation between players and can even be fun if you fail. If you’re not up to the challenge of finding a big enough guild to do this, consider finding a public run on your server. The official forums and Reddit can be good for this.


Those are my top tips for getting the most out of Guild Wars 2. What are yours?

  6 Responses to “7 Top Tips for Guild Wars 2 Players”

  1. Love the tips, especially fixing the key binding. I, myself, use a logitech G13 for shooters, and have been thinking of setting it up for GW2. Brings the keys closer together and better shape for the hand, plus the extremely versatile joystick control. Like the blog too, I’m going to link it to mine over at Come check us out sometime. We could always use guest writers. Keep up the great posts.

  2. Sometime I completely forgot, about the keyboard tips. I have found that using the right key on the mouse in concert with the a and d turn keys gives you a camera move/strafe combo that works very well. If you are holding down the right key the a and d keys become strafe and you can turn the camera at the same time. Haven’t used this with just the strafe keys and the camera turn but it works well for me. Maybe it’s my FPS background, but using WSAD and the mouse together seems very natural.

  3. I’m using a Razer Naga since some years now in GW1 and 2 and it’s a verz good way to never click skills again! It takes like a handful of hours to get used to it but then you never want to play an MMO differently! IMO it’s easier to use the Nagas keys with the thumb than to use the number keys on the keyboard with your left hand while running around.

  4. Thanks for the comments both!

    @Trever: As you can see on the top bar on the blog, I use a Logitech G15 and can say it’s pretty good with GW2. I don’t use macros though (they’re too far in the grey area for me), but have found it to be the most comfortable keyboard for me. I’ll definitely check out your blog; thanks for the link!

    @Sicho: I’m currently using the Logitech G600 for a mouse, which is pretty much a cheaper version of the Naga. It’s useful but I find I have to look down to make sure I’m hitting the right button so besides F1-4, auto run and VOIP button, I don’t use it much.

    @Both: I’m with you that new equipment can make a difference, but not everyone can afford to drop the better part of £100 on new peripherals. I wanted to focus on tips everyone could use without buying anything.

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