There are three key parts of your arsenal that you need to keep in mind whilst in a fight:
Punishment skills ( and /).
The / skill combination.
If you continue to maintain these, you can use the rest of your abilities off cooldown with the above skill prioritization in mind. Furthermore, without a formal rotation you are "punished" less for retaining skills that are needed for a given situation, for instance like saving for CC.
With the amount of expertise/condition duration you get from your build, you need to maintain two shades to ensure your conditions exceed 100% bonus duration. As such, a major part of playing Scourge is maintaining two shades as much as possbile.
After the recent Alacrity changes, this is more difficult to do due to the expected amount of time spent with two shades (10 seconds, half of the total duration of 1 shade) no longer synchronizing with the recharge rate for Shade charges (12 seconds with Alacrity). This leads to one of two outcomes (with perfect Alacrity/Shade placement timing):
After 120 seconds in a fight of creating a new shade as the oldest one expires you run out of shades to cast, leading to a drop from 2 shades up at all times to 1.
You create a new shade everytime you return to 2 charges of , leading to a downtime where you only have 1 shade for 4 seconds out of every 12, leading to a 1.6 shade uptime average over the course of a fight.
To deal with this, you can either maintain 2 shades at all times and use key parts of encounters to recharge your shades (parts like the charged soul phase at Goreseval or the 50% phase at Xera); or you can account for the loss of expertise on average overall by utilizing additional .
Somewhat directly linked to Shade usage, you should aim to always have a Punishment skill up when you need to place a new shade to ensure you procc on each placed shade. As such, avoid using your punishment skills unless your team requires the barrier from or in the case of fights like Souless Horror need your secondary Punishment skill.
With Dagger removed from the build, Scourge uses the Curses minor trait
to transfer the self-inflicted conditions from to a target without having to wait for a length transfer via that is vulnerable to allies cleansing the conditions from you before they transfer.
While and have slighlty different cooldowns allow them both to come off cooldown before using either.
Finally, be aware that
will potentially transfer the less harmful self-inflicted conditions from /, so be sure to avoid using these immediately before using the / combo.
Trail of Anguish vs Shadow Fiend:
These two skills are remarkebly close in damage output, and as such the decision to take either depends on what is required on an encounter by encounter basis.
pulls slighlty ahead in potential damage, but only if you can utilize how it works properly. If you begin casting whilst on top of a target, move off of the target and then move back on them you will apply double the "effect" of (it also works this way for applying extra Swiftness/ Stability to allies). As such, you want to use when you are able to constantly be in melee range and also can pull off the stacking effect. Additionally, also offers the utility benefits of a stun break, and Stability/ Swiftness for allies. Finally, should an encounter have a boon corrupt mechanic you should never run due to the Stability it offers being prone to corruption into fear.
is slightly behind in damage potential, but only if you're in melee all the time. Should you take on a role that requires you stay at range for a singificant period of time (circle team at VG, Kiter at Sabetha, etc.) will pull ahead in damage potential. Note that this is partly due to not being able to hit with from range, but also due to granting extra Life Force; which in turn translates into being able to use more shroud skills to procc .
Of course, if you don't need to take for an encounter you would just take both.
For a single target, Condi Reaper has three different ways to apply Blinds: , and Haunt. The main advantage of Blinds for Reaper is using them in tandem with which grants extra Bleedings via .
However, has an internal cooldown of 3 seconds, so it’s important you spread out the different applications of Bleeding in your rotation (which is why you wait to use after you perform your Scepter Auto attack chains, and you wait till you're about to swap back to Greatsword before using ).
Combo Field Attunementd
The largest difficulty of playing Condi Reaper is ensuring you use all of your whirl finishers inside of combo fields, and also making sure the specific combo fields you "hit" are ice fields (mainly the one created by ).
Practicing and improving your combo field attunement is essential as a significant portion of your damage come from your "Shroud Combo", pushing to the limit and using whirl finishers in ice fields to apply a large number of short Chilled to in turn inflict lots of Bleeding.
However, while it may seem difficult you can generally attune to ice field successfully with careful positioning and achieve a 90%+ "accuracy" rating for doing so.
A good mental checklist to go through when you approach the Shroud Combo portion of your rotation is as follows:
Before starting an encounter, try to get an idea of what kinds of fields your allies will be using. Do you have a Tempest/Chrono? Are they using skills like , , , etc?
These large fields can be difficult to “Shroud Dance” around, but keep in mind that in most cases they will be centered on a target, and as such while you only need to keep the radius of these large combo fields in mind you can make use of the full diameter of the ice field from due to being able to more freely position it.
As you swap into start paying attention to what fields are currently placed, and if possible listen/look for the channeling tells for large combo fields (for example, the sounds of lightning that indicate the channelling effect for or a to indicate a potential usage).
When you begin channelling , you can begin moving to position yourself outside of allied combo fields. Keep in mind that you only need the created ice field to extend slightly outside of other combo fields to ensure you can get the correct field attunement. You also have plenty of time to reposition due to the large channel on (About 1 second with Quickness).
Be sure once you have attuned to the correct field to move back on to your player stack quickly. Doing so allows you to position inside of a target to ensure all created Whirling Bolts hit, and also ensures that you don’t miss essential buffs like Might from or Alacrity from your Chrono’s Wells. With better execution you will rarely if ever miss out on important buffs whilst still attuning to your ice field.
Also be aware that as long as your created ice field exists and you stay within it you will use it for all whirl finishers, so your casts will also interact with the ice field.
Tips for each encounter - Click on each section below to expand
This guide is made exclusively for Condition Scourge
You can also run instead of as it is fairly cheap.
Try to avoid cancelling casts for your important combo skills: Punishment Skills -> to proc your trait; and -> to transfer the two self inflicted conditions (Bleeding and Torment) to your target with the trait.
For the -> combo, avoid using it immediately before/after using another corruption skill to avoid sending the wrong conditions to your target, as you can only send two conditions with this trait. If necessary try to cleanse them with or wait for them to expire/be cleansed by an ally before using the combo.
Keep in mind that you don’t need to keep your shades on your primary target if you’re stacking on it, try to be dynamic with your placement of shades to maximise the number of targets affected by your Shroud skills.
Should you ever need to run , keep in mind it is a 10-15% dps loss on average.
Should you ever need to run , keep in mind that it is a 15% dps loss on average.
If you are bouncing with from a mob to the boss you can minmax your gear a little more.
is useful here both to put conditions on most (if not all) of the seekers to help keep them off of the group, as well as being effective for Bouncing (Epi-bouncing) due to constant seeker presence.
Additionally, if you have enough Condi builds in your group you can elect to stay at blue during the 2nd and 4th phase to from Blue Guardian to Green Guardian.
Try to avoid attempting an Epi-bounce just before the seekers are set to despawn/respawn, which is every 20 seconds.
Seekers can also take the conditions you might be trying to transfer to the Vale/Colored Guardians with so keep an eye on them.
Be sure to take advantage of any Seekers that are close to the group to gain additional Life Force from hitting them with .
Also keep in mind that, when the seekers reset they “die” so you will constantly be getting Life Force throughout the fight. Spam those shroud skills accordingly!
Shades can be effectively placed here to help Fear away the Seekers before they get too close with .
You can also strategically place shades as VG phases to help assist allies with killing their respective guardians more quickly.
Outhealing Green AoEs
If your group is attempting the “No Greens” strategy make sure you save your ability (and other barrier applying skills) for when the greens occur.
Keep in mind that even with permanent Alacrity you will be unable to barrier every green, so try to alternate between using and to give your healer/s more breathing room.
Running to Green AoEs
If you’re assigned to green circle team, you will most likely be better off running which will grant you extra CC that can be used from afar, instead of due to not being able to consistently land as both you and Vale Guardian are always moving.
If your group is running greens, you can take to help the rest of the “green team” to get to/back from the greens quickly should they spawn far away/in a different triad of the arena.
is effective for dealing with the Spirits that Gorseval summons, the Charged Souls during the split phase (to spread around extra damage and additional Chill and Immobilize), and the Ghostly Orbs that spawn around the fight area. Furthermore, all of these can play a part in Epi-bouncing as well.
Be aware that if you get hit by the “egg” attack all of your active minions will immediately die, so be careful.
If your group’s dps is fine but is lacking in CC, you can swap out for .
Try to place your shades on nearby orbs that can’t quite reach to help out your team with orb clearing.
Swap out for / ( if doing a mushroom, if not to avoid minion despawn) here, as the Stability granted by can be corrupted by the slublings into Fear (which can be detrimental).
You can use as an extra safety net to deal with the Fear after the break bars.
While you can use to deal with the Slublings that spawn in, be VERY careful that you do not accidentally on to the player slubling. Keep in mind will only bounce to 5 targets, and only the 5 closest targets to Slothasor will be affected (so if there are 5 enemy Slublings closer to Slothasor than the player Slubling you can without worry.
Be sure to place shades on where your Mesmers plan to pull Slublings to be able to dps them down easily should you be unable to use at the time.
Should you be doing Mushrooms, keep in mind that your minions will die, so try to do either the first or the last mushroom to avoid this being an issue (that or just don’t use any minions).
While not impossible to hit, can be tricky to make use of in its entirety here; if you’re having problems swap it out for for a more consistent (though smaller) level of damage as well as better CC.
By running here, you can use it to grab aggro of the Snipers at the start of the encounter so you can bring them to the door for “door strat”. Stand in the blindspot in the corner between the stairs and the ledge, target the snipers and spam auto attack. Your Flesh Golem will run over to the sniper and hit it, thereby getting it to aggro on you. This can also be done with other Necromancer minions, and in the case of Blood/Bone Fiend would be more efficient due to them having a ranged attack (but are less efficient that running other more beneficial utility skills for the rest of the encounter).
To assist with condi cleansing for allies, it can be useful to run both and here to maximise Life Force gain during this fight.
Keep in mind that as of the recent changes, cleansing chill from allies gives them Alacrity!
You can place shades on any outlying icy patches to kill them with the procs.
You can place barriers on allies that are about to be sacrificed to give them an even larger health bonus whilst transformed. This is because Barrier will dynamically change depending on your maximum health, so a minor barrier can increase by enormously once a player “transforms” into the sacrifice and “gains” their 100k HP.
is your primary tool here, used to ensure the safety of the Mid strat to quickly take out the approaching Phantasms.
While you can precast shades during the orb phase, try to save your / combo for when KC appears during burn phases. Additionally try to save up your Life Force and use your shroud skills for extra procs of , as you’ll have plenty of time to build up Life Force again between burn phases.
Be careful if you have any shades placed anywhere that might cause you to hit the orb, remain observant and check carefully before using any shroud skills during the orb phase.
On a similar note, if you are using any minions be very careful to make sure they do not attack the orb during the orb phase.
Be sure to delay usage of when a break bar is close to spawning.
Save your for the Burn Phase. (If your group is particularly high in dps it may even be prudent to pre-cast it slightly to ensure the damage from it scales up fast enough).
Alternatively, if your group is exceedingly high in dps it may be better to bring for the extra CC.
is effective for both clearing out the ads that spawn in during the fight, and also for clearing the Bloodstone Shards on the outer edge of the area, with some provisions.
All surrounding ads need to be slain before you attempt to clear the crystals.
You need to do so before the “orb” heralding the arrival of more White Mantle adds appears.
The tank needs to position Xera to be closer to the shards you need cleared than any of the others. This can be done without leaving the center, as she only needs to move a small distance to be considered closer.
If you do all of the above, you can clear up to 4 shards with one (one less per nearby mob, and automatically one less than 5 due to the invisible hitbox in the center that counts as a “valid” target for .
When using to kill adds try to wait until they have been pulled on to the group if they’re inside of the AoEs created by the bloodstone shards to avoid them being loaded up with boons, most notably of which being stability which stops them being able to be pulled in.
For any shards you miss/are unable to hit you can place shades on them to assist killing them from afar.
You can use on the first of the two “pre-event” Bloodstone Crystals and have it back up in time for the start of the fight proper. You will only cast once per phase, so if it is not back up in time it is not an issue.
Run instead of here due to this being an entirely single target fight.
can provide some useful Stability if you need to rez an ally.
Your barriers can be handy in an emergency; for instance if players with agony go to the same green circle as the rest of the group.
Considering the majority of your rotation can be done from range and you are fairly defensible with your barriers, consider intentionally taking the agony aggro to make life easier for your more melee oriented allies.
Using here makes dealing with the Jade Scouts/Soldiers a very safe affair. Be sure to time it to get the best ratio of earliest possible cast to most targets hit. Also be aware that the Epi-Bounce window is very small so be sure to communicate accordingly.
You can make use of your shades to further apply damage to the Jade Scouts (just try to avoid damaging the center two Scouts at all as it is simpler to them if they are kept in “sync”).
To elaborate on good timing for , assuming MO is kept very slightly off center you will be able to hit 3 of the Jade Scouts at any given time. Typically you will have 5 strategic casts of in an optimal scenario (Note: this assumes little to no movement of MO at all):
When the Scouts approach your group for the first time, cast just before the Scouts cross the line between the first and second row of Panels.
Cast again as the northernmost Scout is about to cross the line between the second and third row of panels.
Cast for a third time as the first Jade Soldier (created by the southernmost Jade Scout) approaches the group (not applicable if your group dedicates dps to deal with it).
makes dealing with Spears easy, provided they are within the required 900 units of Samarog.
If you’re running for the CC, do your best to avoid fixation due to Samarog’s pummel break bar attack killing any minion you have equipped when it hits you.
During the Prisoner phases there is a “sweet spot” where you can stack Rigom where he is both outside of Samarog’s hitbox but close enough to affect Samarog with his shield detonating. Taking advantage of this can allow you to from Rigom to Guldhem continuously which will either make Guldhem die faster or do a 1-man Epi-Bounce due to all of the conditions immediately being transferred back to rigom.
You can also drop shades on and apply Fear to Rigom to help keep him in position and kill him faster.
If you’re targeted with the larger of the two AoEs from the “Friends” mechanic here you can mitigate the damage with a well timed barrier from or to other player to stay on stack for damage/CC.
You can take advantage of the Prides, Greeds and “fake” Sauls here for Bouncing. Just keep in mind that pretty much everything in this fight can “eat” projectiles. The hand AoEs, the black oil AoEs, even the statues on the outside of the area can be targeted by despite not being “valid” targets.
Barrier will only mitigate the lethal damage from the Mind Crush attack if you running the Death Magic trait , and only if you have enough Life Force to activate .
Be sure to place your shades accordingly to help kill the Prides as they approach Saul.
You can swap out for if your team is really slacking on CC.
Take care when using as the Stability you give to allies can be corrupted into Fear.
Epi-Bouncing is a vital skill to have here, and requires impeccable timing due to the small window that the Tormented Dead/Flesh Wurms stay alive after being hit by it. As such it is important to establish how you will communicate Epi-Bouncing with your other Scourge, be it just calling it out or doing a countdown to help sync up the timing.
If your group is using knockout strat for the Deads, try to use as soon as the Dead is parallel to the group to both ensure it hits, and also to give time for your allies to reposition to knock it away and off the platform. This is a bit trickier to Epi-Bounce for as it relies on your allies syncing their knockbacks with your Epi bounces.
Unless you’re doing CM, has little to no use here.
Should you be kiting, you can use to help mitigate the damage from the bombs from Afflicted players. You can also use a combination of Scepter auto-attacks and Shade placement to grab their aggro without much worry.
If you’re having issues with Swiftness whilst kiting, and your team has enough Vulnerability output you can swap out the Soul Reaping Trait for , as well as run for near perma Swiftness.
could be taken instead of . This could be an option if party members are being hit by the Lesser Death Mark as will not be ready if you have to use it before the Soul Split.
Our can be helpful for ensuring Torment stacks are removed from your allies during the Soul Split attack. Also, in the event an ally is hit by the fissures attack and are feared off in a random direction, you can “rescue” them by placing a shade on them and cleansing the Fear. also means you can afford to be out of position before the Soul Split attack due to being able to cleanse the Torment off of yourself.
During the final 10% try to stack up shades on your group to provide some extra barrier to allies before moving out of the bubble to “push the buttons”.
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