Dungeon Overview

Ascalonian Catacombs dungeon loading screen from Guild Wars 2

Although dungeons are no longer the prime content they once were, players still run dungeons. Some run dungeons because they need the tokens for crafting legendary weapons, others run dungeons to level up their characters. And some people run dungeons just for fun, loot, and achievements.

What Class Is Best For Dungeons?

In the past, “best class for dungeons” was a big thing in Guild Wars 2. LFGs for dungeon runs often specified which classes the group was willing to accept, and some groups would even make you pass their gear and equipment inspection (“ping your gear”) before allowing you to join.

But that was then, and this is now. Power creep in GW2 has made dungeons a trivial pastime. Many players have grown tired of dungeons, and have moved on to Fractals and raids.

Although dungeons used to be considered Very Serious Business, today a party of three experienced players is enough to clear all but the most difficult dungeon paths. (Our guild routinely does dungeons with a party of 3-5 extremely drunk players. Half the time we barely even bother to stack when you’re supposed to.)

Note: A few of the paths and dungeons are still actually somewhat difficult. Arah, for example, is kind of a buzzkill if you’re drunk. But it’s still not nearly the exhausting, difficult slog that it used to be.

These days, a player’s biggest struggle isn’t choosing the right class and build to get through a dungeon – it’s finding enough other players to form a party.

Why Run Dungeons?

You might be wondering, why bother doing dungeons at all?

Loot

Especially for new players, the loot drops and coin in the bonus chests (33-60 silver) is a worthwhile incentive for 15-20 minutes of work.

Loot Note: The real money-maker with dungeons is the repeatable Dungeon Frequenter achievement. Every time you complete eight different dungeon paths, this achievement awards you 5 gold.

XP

Dungeons award a massive amount of XP when you complete a path. Dungeons are one of the tried-and-true methods of power-leveling a character in Guild Wars 2.

Story

Each dungeon path has its own interesting story. This story is conveyed through cutscenes which 95% of parties will insist you skip so that they can get on with it.

If you want to watch the cutscenes, be sure to mention that in your LFG post. (For example, “SE path 1, watching all cutscenes.”)

Dungeon Tokens

Each dungeon awards its own currency (“tokens”). These can be exchanged for gear and accessories at the Dungeon Armor and Weapons vendor in Lion’s Arch. A full set of armor costs 1380 tokens.

Each dungeon has its own set of unique armor skins, as well as Rare and Exotic armor with the following stats:

  • Ascalonian Catacombs: Soldier’s, Magi’s, Rampagers
  • Caudecus’s Manor: Rampager, Rabid, Shaman’s
  • Twilight Arbor: Rabid, Magi’s Rampager
  • Sorrow’s Embrace: Carrion, Soldier’s, Knight’s
  • Citadel of Flame: Berserker’s, Carron, Rampager’s
  • Honor of the Waves: Rabid, Magi’s, Soldier
  • Crucible of Eternity: Berserker’s, Knight’s, Rabid
  • Ruined City of Arah: Berserker’s, Knight’s, Rabid

Funsies

After you get familiar with the dungeon path, it’s fun to run through it with a group of friends.

Dungeon Advice

Whichever class and build you choose to play, be sure to have the appropriate gear for your character. Kit them out with gear, weapons, and trinkets that are at or near the character’s level. Ideally these should be Rare or better, but it’s more important to have gear that’s level-appropriate.

Consumables: food and utilities can give your character a much-needed boost.

Be Honest

If you have never done a particular dungeon before, many players will be more than happy to help you through it. Post an LFG for “new player, first time through this dungeon,” and you have a good chance at finding experienced players who will guide you.

Join a Guild

Most large, friendly guilds will have several people on at any given time who are willing to help a new player through a dungeon.

Watch and Listen

It’s a good idea to read the wiki explanation of the fights and basic walkthrough. But for each path of each dungeon, there’s a generally-accepted “way we always do it” that may not be apparent to outsiders.

Keep an eye on the other members of your party, and watch what they are doing. For example, if everyone suddenly bunches together in one particular spot, join them. This is called “stacking” and it is an important strategy.

If your party calls out instructions, follow them. If you don’t understand the instruction, politely ask for more details. “Sorry, I’m new, what am I supposed to do here?”

New Player Note: a player’s achievement points often serve as an indicator of their experience. When you join a group, mouse over each player’s name in your party. Make a note of who has the most AP – and who has the least. When in doubt, follow the lead of the high-AP player.

Don’t Take Jerks to Heart

Of course, there are always the occasional elitist jerks who still take dungeons way too seriously. (Although most of them have moved on to raids by this point.)

If someone asks you to ping your gear, insults you, or is otherwise abrasive, feel free to just leave.

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