[Top 3] GW2 Best AoE Classes

Bathe them in fire with the best AoE classes in Guild Wars 2

In Guild Wars 2 nothing quite beats fire and death for AoE domination

In the game Guild Wars 2 there are a lot of ways to melt large groups of enemies and that means bringing down doom and devastation with Area of Effect skills. In this article, we will explore what makes the top three classes the most dangerous for area denial and effective for burning down even mountains of foes.

All AoE spells and weapons in GW2 can only affect up to five targets at a time, but when laid down fast enough and in large enough areas will certainly hit larger numbers as time passes.

Most weapons in GW2 support at least one AoE attack and numerous classes have skills that hit with an AoE – some instant some long-lasting. It can take a lot of skill to combine the two and there are a number of classes that stand out.

3. Elementalist – Tempest

The Elementalist rises to the occasion

The Tempest specialization of the Elementalist uses their innate power to call upon the elements to overcharge themselves and explode with elemental might. As a result, they have a lot of catastrophic AoE power to call upon, making them a class capable of inflicting severe damage over large areas.

These AoE skills couple well with Elementalists wielding a staff, because staff weapons have a lot of AoE already baked in. Tempest’s can also equip horns – and the horn has a huge number of AoE skills also baked in. It depends on what kind of AoE attacks you want to pick between them: staff is built for more offensive, ranged AoE, and the horn is more point-blank AoE and support skills.

Foremost, the hardest-hitting AoE skill for a Tempest is the “overload” profession mechanic. Once a Tempest attunes to an element – Fire, Water, Air, or Earth – it slowly builds up until it hits overload. Upon overload, the Tempest can trigger a massive AoE skill that hits a huge area around the Tempest. Fire and Air both output a huge amount of damage – whereas Water and Earth are more support, but healing friends and crippling enemies.

Additionally, Tempest’s get access to shouts, one for each element, which can cause massive damage, or sew confusion such as “Feel the Burn!” (fire damage), “Eye of the Storm!” (AoE stun break), “Aftershock!” (AoE damage and cripple), and “Flash-Freeze” (AoE damage and chill).

Finally, Glyph of Storms allows any Elementalist, including Tempests, to call down a massive barrage of elemental energy based on the element attuned – this means a firestorm, ice storm, lightning storm or sand storm.

The Elementalist Tempest specialization is available to players with the Heart of Thorns expansion. The Elementalist Weaver specialization from Path of Fire also deserves an honorable mention here.

Here is an AoE build for Tempest: https://metabattle.com/wiki/Build:Tempest_-_Power_DPS_(Fractal)

2. Necromancer - Reaper

The Necromancer will reap souls

Reapers advance on their foes with grim determination, using a greatsword to carve through groups of enemies. Necromancer’s Reapers can also transform themselves with Reaper’s Shroud and become the slow-moving but inexorable movie monster that just wreaks havoc on everything in its path.

Although Reapers can devastate groups extremely well with a greatsword, the classes strongest AoE attacks are in the Shroud skill. This is a toggled ability all Necromancers have that uses Life Force instead of mana to activate skills.

Activating Reaper’s Shroud covers the Reaper in undulating darkness and equips them with a scythe. The biggest AoE skills are Soul Spiral, a twirling attack that sweeps a large area around the Reaper for massive damage, and Executioner’s Scythe, an attack that animates as an overhead swing that strikes the ground and damages all nearby enemies, it can stun a single target and deal massive damage but leaves behind a field of lingering ice.

Finally, with a greatsword equipped Reapers have access to Gravedigger, another twirling attack that deals massive damage around the Reaper – and, if it hits any enemies with low health it recharges faster. This means that it can be triggered rapidly when enemy health is low.

The Reaper is available for players who have the Heart of Thorns expansion. The Necromancer Scourge specialization from Path of Fire also deserves an honorable mention here.

Here’s an AoE build for Reaper: https://metabattle.com/wiki/Build:Reaper_-_Power_Greatsword

1. Guardian - Firebrand

The Firebrand burns down her enemies with cleansing flame

The Firebrand is a specialization of the base-class Guardian in GW2. These characters excel at bringing down flame and fire upon large areas using access to ancient knowledge – where Guardians have Virtues, Firebrands use Tomes, and as they read the words of destruction from their pages, they lay low their enemies.

The Firebrand’s most powerful AoE skills are in the Tome of Justice – which provides access to large-area fire-based AoE spells.

The first skill is called “Chapter 1: Searing Spell” and sprays forward a cone of fire inflicting damage but leaves behind lingering Burning for damage over three seconds. The second “Chapter 2: Igniting Burst” fires off an AoE burst of flame centered on the caster inflicting damage and leaves behind two stacks of Burning damage over six seconds. The last powerful AoE skill is “Chapter 4: Scorched Aftermath” which hits for damage five times, makes enemies Bleed for two seconds, and leave behind Burning damage over two seconds.

Firebrands can also equip an axe as a weapon that has numerous AoE attacks attached to it. However, it also provides a skill that can draw enemies towards you – bunching them up for AoE hits. A similar skill exists in the Tome of Justice as well, “Chapter 3: Heated Rebuke,” which inflicts damage and pulls five enemies together.

The Guardian Firebrand specialization is available to players who own the Path of Fire expansion. An honorable mention of the Guardian Dragonhunter, which uses AoE traps to great effect, from the Heart of Thorns expansion.

Here is an AoE build for Firebrand: https://metabattle.com/wiki/Build:Firebrand_-_Burning_Tome

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After spending 99 hours attempting to tame Loque'nahak, a spirit beast in World of Warcraft, I may have lost some sanity. Since then I continue to haunt game worlds in a quest to discover more pets.
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