Daredevil - Bounding Staff

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Part of the current metagame.

Our curator decided this build is in the current metagame regardless of rating. The community gave this build a rating, making it top-tier: Great.

Focused on: Direct damageArea damageSingle targetRanged damageMelee damageMobilityDpsSurvivalFast taggingSolo playGroup playRoaming.

Designed for:


Expansions required:

GW2 Heart of Thorns logo.png


Power Daredevil is one of the strongest power-based open world builds in the game and is considered top tier in roaming, solo, or zerging playstyles. It is capable of completing even extremely difficult content on its own and can be quickly adjusted to become one of the best tagging builds in the game.

  • Extremely mobile
  • Very high sustain
  • Lots of dodges
  • Easy access to stealth makes it ideal for node farming / map comp
  • Animation lock on both of your good DPS skills
  • Simple rotation can be boring to some
  • Short steal distance is annoying to players already familiar with core thief

Skill Bar


Weapon Variants

  • This build relies heavily on Staff and swapping weapons, other than shortbow, is only recommended if you also swap many of the traits.
  • For a Pistol/Pistol thief, it is recommended to look int Daredevil - P/P Dash.
  • For a tagging varaint of this build, see Daredevil - TagDevil

Skill Variants

  • - a powerful escape button that can sometimes outclass other heals in high-pressure situations.
  • - if having issues with burning, poison, bleeding, or confusion.
  • - can replace if you don't need the Stunbreak.
  • - alternative stun break that provides more damage.
  • - alternative stun break that grants mobility and condition cleanse.
  • - blinds enemies and blocks projectiles.
  • - if crowd control is needed.
  • - to escape from enemies or stealth past them.
  • - For assisting allies in reaching places.
  • - grants significant defiance bar damage
  • - more damage on a longer cooldown; ideal for solo or duo bosses / hero points


Build Code


  • - offers significantly higher damage at the cost of most of your sustain

Deadly Arts Variant

Higher DPS in some situations. Replaces trickery.

Acrobatics Variant

This variant provides high sustain but lower boon support and damage. Replaces Trickery.

Zerg Variant

When zerging, use a shortbow with + and change

  • OR
    • needs + and to fully function, but provides much more consistent tagging.
    • provides more mobility and doesn't require any additional runes, but has less consistent tagging.


Ascended gear and stat infusions are not required; you can use exotic gear with the same stats.

Standard Equipment

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PvE weapon swap.png
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Superior Rune of Strength

Variant Equipment


  • Berserker stat icon.png Berserker's , Assassin stat icon.png Assassin's - higher dps, lower defense
  • Knight stat icon.png Knight's - lower dps, higher defense; recommended only to use a few trinkets when extra defense is needed, full Knights is not a good option


  • , - higher burst, lower DPS
  • , - defensive options, generally not reocmmended
  • - hybrid defense/offense option
  • - Strongest defensive option when zerging


  • - higher burst than
  • - use if using Might-on-dodge food often


When zerging, it is highly recommended that you review the Daredevil - TagDevil build.



This food is used to maximize profit when farming events.
  • Any ascended food is superior to any other food you could use. Steak for power, flatbread for conditions.
  • - Use for general farming.
  • - Use for when you need to max out magic find.
  • - more sustain (requires crit chance)
  • Anything - Any food is better than none, but you should prioritize the food above before using any other food.
  • , , - general farming
  • - good damage option with +karma


This food assists with more difficult content, such as bosses or bounties.
  • Can't find such food "Scoop of Mint Berry Swirl Ice Cream"! Please refer to our food index., , Can't find such food "Bowl of Meat and Winter Vegetables"! Please refer to our food index. - Defense/Damage
  • , - Damage
  • - Damage



  • This build is pretty easy to deal damage with, just use and autoattack.
    • You should spam for AoE burst damage.
  • Dodge lots!
  • Use off cooldown


  • You have lots and lots of dodges with this build. and are also dodges.
    • If you're caught without any endurance you can press .
  • Block attacks with and use it to break stuns.
  • can be used to interrupt dangerous enemy attacks.
  • can be used to blind enemies or destroy projectiles.


  • You have a massive amount of healing from .
  • is a large heal on a short cooldown
  • In dire situations, cleanses conditions. If you have lots of trouble with conditions you should run and/or .


  • Stealth is one of the most useful tools available to Thieves. Use to channel hero points or sneak through otherwise dangerous places.
  • If is not enough, you can blast stealth. To do this, equip a shortbow, place a , then spam in the smoke field.

Crowd Control

  • and
  • Bandit's Defense
    Not usable underwater.png
    Bandit's Defense
    Physical. Briefly block incoming attacks. If you block an enemy in melee range, retaliate and knock enemies down.
    Duration.pngDuration: 1½ seconds
    Breaks Stun.pngBreaks Stun
     Forward arrow blue.png 
    Reflexive Strike
    Not usable underwater.png
    Reflexive Strike
    Physical. Deliver a massive kick that knocks enemies down.
    Damage.pngDamage: 444
    Knockdown.pngKnockdown: 2 seconds
    Range.pngRange: 240
  • Fist Flurry
    Not usable underwater.png
    Fist Flurry
    Physical. Strike your enemy multiple times. If all attacks hit, gain access to Palm Strike.
    Damage.pngDamage (5x): 1,625
    Fist Flurry.pngPalm Strike (5s): You can use Palm Strike
    Range.pngRange: 130
     Forward arrow blue.png 
    Palm Strike
    Palm Strike
    Physical. Strike your foe once to deal massive damage and stun them, marking them with a Pulmonary Impact.
    Damage.pngDamage: 739
    Damage.pngSecond Strike Damage: 1,940
    Palm Strike.pngPulmonary Impact: Explosively damaging attack.
    Stun.pngStun: 2 seconds
    Range.pngRange: 130
  • (if running a spare pistol offhand)
Build rating - 5 stars
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12 Ratings
5 stars
Rhelik gave this build 5 stars 4 weeks ago

This build is incredibly strong; it brings high AoE burst & DPS and versatility to every aspect of PvE. Just look at the number of variants. I run with Deadly Arts and the squishier full Berserker and Scholar runes but with access to so many evades (as noted, don't forget skills 3 & 5 are ones also!) and Bandit's Defense I've had fairly little trouble completing most things. Typically most enemies are dead before they get a chance to do much and Invigorating Precision does its usual great job at keeping you on your feet. I prefer to use P/P as the weapon swap because of those times where you can't quite melee an enemy or need to create some space but can easily perforate it with Unload instead (dodge first for Bounding Dodger). It's been my bread & butter setup basically since HoT released.

5 stars
Elthari gave this build 5 stars October 2019

Very solid build with lots of defensive options and tons of AOE damage. Ideal for many PoF event chains, in skilled hands can solo champs easily.

4 stars
Painbow gave this build 4 stars September 2019

A good build for general open world. The might takes a little time to ramp up and it generally kills mobs slower than PP DE (better cleave though).

9 More Ratings
4 stars
Dawn1337 gave this build 4 stars October 2018

Great build, definitely my favorite so far. tried it out on my theif, and i switched to this build, from Deadeye. thanks for this amazing build mate!

5 stars
Finkster gave this build 5 stars September 2018

Definitely my favorite Thief build since HoT released. Does great damage, lots of evades... If you learn to use it properly and not just spam buttons, it really can be effective. I use the trickery variant because I'm used to having the extra initiative.

5 stars
Narcisse gave this build 5 stars September 2018

THE open world Thief build. Great cleave to deal with mobs, tons of sustain through health recovery and the permanent dodges. Still needs good timing to dodge properly, as the class in itself is really frail. The damage capacity is great. I love it.

5 stars
Chinkeeyong gave this build 5 stars September 2018

One of the best soloing builds in GW2, this build packs high AoE damage for farming, insane survivability through lifesteal, and tons of dodges for soloing difficult content like champions and even raid bosses.

4 stars
Marioglaxy2 gave this build 4 stars September 2018


5 stars
Foozlesprite gave this build 5 stars July 2018

This build (trickery variant) is nearly as effective as my minion necro at soloing champs. If I get downed, my health fills up ridiculously quickly and revives me, just from using the cheap Mintberry Swirl Ice Cream. I soloed the Mark III Golem, plus groups of wandering adds, in Sandswept Isles - and I've only had this character for about a month and a half.

The variants are mostly quick switches of one or two skills rather than complete weapon, utility, or trait line changeups, so it's easy to switch them on the fly to adjust to anticipated fights.

If I take this character into fractals I will definitely check out the similar build, because this is an enjoyable and effective build that's easy to pick up and offers bountiful rewards for the effort.

5 stars
Screaming gave this build 5 stars July 2018

This is THE Thief open world build to top all others. Unlike Thief's other Elite, Daredevil doesn't rely on a mechanic like malice, meaning its damage is both a lot more consistent and reliable no matter how high the health of the enemy you're facing. Staff is Thief's best weapon for open world, having a ridiculous amount of cleave and and really good damage on Vault which also has an evade. For just generally doing things in open world, especially alone, this might very well be the best build out there. Though for most cases, especially against tougher opponents, I would suggest Trickery over Deadly Arts, as Deadly Arts' biggest asset isn't even present for half a fight, while Trickery gives more boons, extra initiative, a rare source of boonrip, and extra CC, and those boons are present every time you steal. Vigor especially helps a Daredevil with Bounding Dodger.

5 stars
Kon gave this build 5 stars May 2018

This is a great build for open world, and prepares you nicely for the fractal/raid version. Though there is a DPS tradeoff, I use Scoop of Mintberry Swirl Ice Cream as the food to have even more survivability.

5 stars
Keyaelamor gave this build 5 stars April 2018

I play this in open world and can only recommend it. Many champions can be easily killed solo with this as long as you can take the correct utility.

I prefer using Deadly Arts to Trickery, extra initiative is not very useful here, except when using P/P which is only needed for a few champions.

Scholar runes make sense here even in open world thanks to Invigorating Precision.

My go-to cheap food is Plate of Orrian Steak Frittes.

Don't be afraid to swap Bandit Defense for something else. Shadow Refuge and Haste are both a good choice if you are gathering (stealth or quickness to speed up gathering), Haste is great for going through short fights quickly. The Power Signet is a good choice if you get quickness from some source and don't need the block/stun break from Bandit Defense.

A great way to go through individual small encounters very quickly is to do the following: Start dodge far from enemy -> Steal mid-dodge to teleport to the enemy -> Fist Flurry -> Palm Strike -> Haste -> staff 2/1.

Do not get lured by the big numbers you see when using Vault, it has higher DPS than attacks 1 and 2 only if you can actually hit 5 enemies. The evade is very useful, so it's best used for moving around.