Raid Team Composition
This guide is currently being rewritten. In the mean-time the old and outdated version can be found here.
Squad compositions in Guild Wars 2's raids are typically made up of a selection of DPS classes, classes that provide offensive support/buffs and anywhere from 1-3 healers in a 10 man group. This guide will explain commonly used options in each category, as well as providing some frequently-seen compositions and explaining what makes them work. Different encounters may also have mechanics that make certain classes or builds stronger in that specific encounter, including tanking mechanics and breakbars- these will also be touched on in this guide.
The builds listed are not the only options - for the sake of keeping this guide to a manageable length it only includes commonly seen builds in the current meta and so many builds more than capable of participating in a raid boss kill have not been included. For a more complete list of builds for each role and class see the full list of raid builds.
The role with the largest variety of options, and also the most variability between encounters due to different mechanics or quirks of each encounter. While typically a player in the DPS role should be focused on dealing the most possible damage to the boss, many encounters will have mechanics that are often taken care of by a DPS role.
|Elementalist||Weaver||Weaver - Staff DPS||Ranged power DPS||
|Weaver - Power Sword||Melee power DPS||
|Thief||Daredevil||Daredevil - D/D Condi DPS||Melee condition DPS||
|Daredevil - DPS Staff||Melee power DPS||
|Warrior||Berserker||Berserker - DPS Condition||Ranged/Melee condition DPS||
|Engineer||None||Engineer - DPS Condition||Ranged/Melee condition DPS||
|Holosmith||Holosmith - Power DPS||Melee power DPS||
|Necromancer||Scourge||Scourge - Condi DPS||Ranged condition DPS||
|Mesmer||Mirage||Mirage - DPS Phantasm||Melee condition DPS||
|Revenant||Renegade||Renegade - Condi DPS||Melee condition DPS||
|Ranger||Soulbeast||Soulbeast - Condition Stance Share||Melee condition DPS||
|Guardian||Dragonhunter||Dragonhunter - DPS Greatsword Scepter/Torch||Melee power DPS|
|Firebrand||Firebrand - Condition DPS||Melee condition DPS||
Builds in this category have significant overlap with Healers and Tanks - it is common for builds to be fulfill both roles. Others builds are simply similar to DPS builds that have swapped traits, skills or gear in order to provide buffs. Typically only a selection of these are used in a squad at once - you can only have so many buffs!
|Mesmer||Chronomancer||Chronomancer - Utility Boon Support||Provides large amounts of Quickness and Alacrity as well as helping to maintain other useful boons such as Fury and|
|Chronomancer - Minstrels Tank||Tankier version of Chronomancer - Utility Boon Support|
|Ranger||Druid||Druid - Support/Healer Staff||Might} and Fury, can also maintain Vigor and |
|Druid - DPS/Support Condition||Capable of providing a similar range of boons and the same unique damage buffs and stat aura as Druid - Support/Healer Staff while doing significantly higher damage (but less healing)|
|Druid - DPS/Support Power||Capable of providing a similar range of boons and the same unique damage buffs and stat aura as Druid - Support/Healer Staff while doing higher damage (but less healing)|
|Warrior||Berserker||Berserker - Support Condition||Provides unique damage buffs through banners - and and a passive stat aura -|
|Revenant||Renegade||Renegade - DPS/Support Condition||Provides large amounts of Might and Alacrity|
|Renegade - Raid Healer||Provides large amounts of Might and Alacrity as well as a passive stat aura -|
|Guardian||Firebrand||Firebrand - Quickness DPS||Provides large amounts of Quickness and moderate Might|
As you will notice, almost all of the healing builds also provide some degree of offensive support leading to a lot of overlap in the two categories. Many groups use 2 healers for all encounters, with more experienced groups opting to run fewer healers. Less experienced groups may choose to take an additional healer for encounters with high incoming damage pressure.
|Ranger||Druid||Druid - Support/Healer Staff||Provides a wide range of boons and unique offensive buffs and strong healing while in . Healing output drops significantly while not in . Can bring large amounts of CC to help with breakbars.|
|Druid - DPS/Support Condition||Provides similar range of boons to Druid - Support/Healer Staff, capable of strong general DPS and moderate heals while in but has only very minor heals outside of . Can bring large amounts of CC to help with breakbars.|
|Druid - DPS/Support Power||Provides similar range of boons to Druid - Support/Healer Staff, capable of good general DPS and moderate heals while in but has only very minor heals outside of . Can bring large amounts of CC to help with breakbars.|
|Revenant||Renegade||Renegade - Raid Healer||Unparalleled burst healing abilities, can also provide frequent condition cleanse and some offensive support. Offers large amounts of CC to help with breakbars|
|Renegade - DPS/Support Condition||Sacrifices a large amount of the healing of Renegade - Raid Healer for significantly increased DPS potential.|
|Elementalist||Tempest||Tempest - Staff Raid Healer||Unparalleled sustained healing with very little effort required, strong defensive boon generation and condition cleansing. Amazing revival capabilities thanks to but almost no DPS or CC capabilities.|
Due to the need to run toughness on their gear in order to gain access to boon duration as well as the very high amount of blocks, evades and invulnerability available to them, chronomancers are almost always designated as the tank in encounters with a tank mechanic. All encounters can be tanked using Chronomancer - Utility Boon Support, substituting berserker gear pieces for knights stats if extra toughness is required to maintain aggro. If you are struggling to keep yourself alive, Chronomancer - Minstrels Tank can be used, offering a large increase in personal suitability at the cost of almost all of your damage potential.
Goals of designing a raid team
Before beginning to think about how these builds come together, it is important to understand the basics that should be present in a raid squad:
- Boons and Buffs
A well-built raid squad should be able to maintain the following buffs on all 10 members:
As laid out earlier in the guide, these all have multiple sources, so there isn't a set in stone method of how they can be provided to your squad. You will also often maintain other miscellaneous (but often important) boons such as Swiftness, Vigor and Regeneration as a side-product of having classes that provide the primary offensive buffs, so you shouldn't need to specifically find a source for them.
It is also highly recommended that you include at least one Warrior (typically a Condition Berserker) and one Ranger of some variety (typically a Druid) in your squad so that they can provide the following unique and powerful group DPS buffs:
Finally, there are several stat auras available that are a nice bonus to have but are not essential buffs, and depending on whether your DPS classes are primarily Condition or Power based some may have little effect:
- - Found in Warrior's Tactics specialization
- - Found in Ranger's Skirmishing specialization
- - Found in Engineer's Firearms specialization
- - Found in Revenant's Devastation specialization
If at least one of these classes is in your squad they should generally be expected to provide the buff, however be sure not to double-up on them in the same subsquad, since multiple sources of the same buff do not stack! Try to organise your subgroups so that everyone is able to gain the maximum benefit from the buffs - condition-based DPS classes should be paired with , and power-based DPS classes should be paired with , and if possible.
All encounters can be completed with only one dedicated healer, but generally groups will take two healers in order to provide a safety net, as a single healer will struggle to heal a 10-man squad through any failed mechanics. Any of the Healer builds listed earlier in the guide can provide ample group healing.
A lot of Raid mechanics revolve around breaking Bosses breakbars try to not use to many CC skills to not cripple your DPS but make sure the bar still gets broken fast enough. The CC readily available to each build is generally listed on its build page, and a detailed explanation of 'all' CC options can be found on the official wiki. The amount needed varies from encounter to encounter,