Guardian is arguably the most well-rounded class in GW2, with an excellent balance between ease of use, DPS, and flexible build options. Basic Guardian gameplay is simple, which makes it easy for new players to use. For experienced players, Guardian builds can be configured for power, condition damage (“condi”), healing, or stability support.
New Player Note: Along with Ranger, we highly recommend Guardian for new players. This class has the ease of use and durability of a Warrior, with much higher damage. It is also flexible enough to be reconfigured for several different uses, and both of the Elite Specializations are fantastic. This means that a Guardian character will be able to grow with you as a player.
Best Guardian Builds
As a heavy armor class, the Guardian is quite durable, which is another reason why we recommend this class for new players. When equipped with Soldier gear and six Superior Runes of the Dolyak, Guardian is virtually unkillable. (Although the trade-off in DPS is generally not worth it.)
Guardian movement speed is less of a problem than it is with the slowest class (Warrior) but is admittedly still an issue. Guardian Staff skill 3 includes a speed boost, as does the utility skill “Retreat!”
Mounts make this class much more fun to play, because they let you avoid the frustration of constantly being left behind by other players.
Guardian As Healer
Guardian is the second-best healer in the game. Druid is unquestionably the best, but a Druid is a bit of a one-trick pony. If you want to do more than just healing other players, Guardian is your best option.
We recommend the Snow Crows and MetaBattle Guardian builds, as these are carefully-tested and kept up to date with the current meta.
Loot note: In the past, “Lootstick Guardian” was the ideal meta for farming large mobs. However, the Staff 1 skill has been rebalanced with a much shorter range.
Most Guardians use Greatsword and Scepter/Focus. Hammer is quite good for stability and crowd control (“cc”) and is particularly useful in PvP and WvW.
Guardian Elite Specializations
Dragonhunter: Gain the use of Longbow, which is an outstanding primary weapon. Dragonhunter traps are also fantastic.
Firebrand: With condition damage (“condi”) so strong right now, a condi Firebrand build does ridiculous amounts of damage. Firebrand’s other two F key modes offer a fantastic suite of healing skills (F2) and stability/condi clear (F3). Firebrand stability is particularly in demand for WvW.