I’ve been playing a good amount of my Guardian alt in Guild Wars 2 these last few weeks and having a blast. I really like the aesthetic of the class, magical abilities infused with blue flame or light coupled with in-your-face melee attacks. The class is also a mix of support and defense baked-in with the three frequent use ‘virtue’ F-keys and the auto-block mechanics of aegis. In many ways the class makes me think of the Paladin archetype from fantasy literature, Dungeons & Dragons and other sources.I’m not a fan of tanking as a standard trinity/group role in dungeons or other content, but I do love healing. So although my Guardian isn’t a classic MMORPG healer, I do get to feel a bit like one during dynamic events by buffing people’s health and defense. At the moment he wields (long)sword & focus for exploring and damage dealing, and staff for group content and survivability. The former gives a charge ability and some burst damage. The latter weapon brings a wide-spray basic attack for quickly tagging multiple mobs in the crazier zerg situations, and Symbol of Swiftness and Empower for buffing allies. It’s a combo I’ve been using on him for a while, at least since I dropped shield for the focus back when he was spending most of his time running the world boss event chain in Wayfarer Foothills. The key attributes of the Paladin, a stoic magic knight with a focus on healing and defensive abilities describe the Guardian well indeed. There’s a lack of the usual obvious religious trappings and faith that you might expect of a Paladin, but the visuals and mechanics fit the trope well enough for me to really enjoy playing this profession.
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