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Deadeye - SA Rifle Roamer

The community gave this build a rating, making it top-tier: Great

Focused on: Strike damage and Mobility

Designed for: WvW Roaming

Expansions required: Path of Fire Builds

This build was last updated on July 10, 2024 and is up to date for the June 25, 2024 patch.


A Shadow Arts take on Rifle Power Deadeye, this WvW roaming build relies heavily on Stealth Stealth to survive between frequent but small burst chains while utilizing its ranged attacks to stay out of harm's way.

Skill Bar


Skill Variants


  • Dagger/Pistol over Sword/Dagger - another great backup set. Focuses more on stalling in stealth and ambushing enemies with burst damage while S/D offers more of a bruiser playstyle that allows you to go toe to toe with enemies.


For the optional slot:

  • Shadow Gust - CC and easy Stealth Stealth access. Could be used defensively to create a breathing room and escape in stealth, or offensively to set up a Death's Judgment on Rifle.
  • Binding Shadow - CC and damage boost through Vulnerability Vulnerability stacking. Because of the delay, with proper timing BS can be used to set up burst such as Malicious Death's Judgment while you're still in stealth.
  • Assassin's Signet - passive damage increase and an active that can greatly enhance your burst damage.
  • Signet of Agility - cleanses several conditions, has a useful passive, and refills just enough endurance for a dodge roll which means it has great synergy with Silent Scope.
  • Blinding Powder - stun break and instant Stealth Stealth access.


  • Hide in Shadows - more focus on stealth, but you sacrifice an on-demand evade frame on Withdraw for a skill that has a cast time, which means it generally performs worse under pressure unless you are already stealthed or built proper distance.


  • Dagger Storm - a panic button that can save your from enemy burst. The choice between Dagger Storm and Shadow Meld is similar to the Withdraw vs Hide in Shadows debate, one grants an instant evade frame while the other adds more stealth albeit with a cast time. Dagger Storm is the better reactive defensive skill, but stealth is one of the most important parts of the build. Both are equally viable options.

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  • Cloaked in Shadow could be a solid defensive choice in melee range. Blind Blinding nearby foes after a dodge on Rifle could make all the difference when you're being pressured in melee, allowing you to escape safely after stealthing up. On S/D this will also make it less risky to go into melee for a Cloak and Dagger. The price is the loss of Poison Poison procs and the life steal synergy + healing reduction that comes with it.


  • One in the Chamber makes you slightly worse at building Malice in exchange for better access to stolen skills (which could translate to more stealth).



Equipment Variants


  • Relic of the Deadeye - worth considering when playing with at least 2 utility Cantrips.
  • Relic of Isgarren - a damage boost that can be maintained somewhat passively, but might not be active for stealth bursts or when you're trying to catch enemies offguard. Works well in prolonged 1v1s however.
  • Relic of the Adventurer - defensive relic with Silent Scope synergy, restoring 1 dodge roll's worth of endurance after using Withdraw.
  • Relic of the Unseen Invasion - much better mobility in combat, which also improves your survivability.


  • Rune of Superior Rune of Fireworks - lower burst damage but much better boon duration. This is especially relevant for your Quickness Quickness sources, creating longer burst windows for you with Be Quick or Be Killed.


  • Sigil of Superior Sigil of Air over Sigil of Superior Sigil of Energy - better burst on your main set, but less Silent Scope synergy. Good option if you find yourself camping Rifle a lot.
  • Sigil of Superior Sigil of Air or Energy over Sigil of Superior Sigil of Bloodlust - in case you don't want to bother with a stacking sigil.



  • - great synergy with Silent Scope, this food provides not just more evasion but also higher Stealth Stealth uptime.
    • Budget version:
  • - better burst damage and some extra life steal.


  • or


Elite specialization basics

  • Steal is replaced by Deadeye's Mark, which has greater range but also a cast time. We're still going to refer to this as steal.
  • Stolen skills are also replaced by new ones for each profession, although these are much less situational and can be used more freely. One thing to note is that you cannot pick the target freely for the new stolen skills, they will always be used on your marked target (even if they are in stealth, which can be useful for finishing off low HP stealthed targets).
  • Your specialization resource is called Malice. It's built through using attack skills with an initiative cost on your marked target and you can have up to 5 stacks of Malice. Stealth attacks such as Malicious Death's Judgment consume Malice and are further empowered based on the number of Malice stacks.
  • At the 5 Malice threshold stolen skills such as Steal Health grant Stealth Stealth on activation, which is going to be their primary purpose - but be wary that they also do damage, so if you were already in stealth these will reveal you instead. There is a workaround for this however: stolen skills need line of sight (LoS) to deliver damage, if you intentionally break LoS then you can use them for the stealth without drawbacks.


  • Start fights with Deadeye's Mark to begin passively building Malice.
  • Silent Scope provides easy stealth access on rifle, the only limiting factor will be endurance.
  • Mercy recharges Deadeye's Mark. Use it when you either run out of initiative, have to switch targets, or need to interrupt via Sleight of Hand.
  • Shadowstep is easily the most versatile skill in the build. Couple of applications include:
    • Extending the reach of rifle by 1200 range instantly.
    • Escaping from melee, and then doing it again with Shadow Return when they get close.
    • Stomping downed opponents with Shadowstep Shadow Return.
    • Breaking stun and cleansing conditions.
  • Signet of Agility is good for more than just cleansing conditions or boosting your precision, its active effect restores an entire dodge roll's worth of endurance which can be turned into stealth.
  • D/P is the set you use if Rifle's either getting countered by projectile denial for an extended period of time but you want to go for the kill, or if you need to stack stealth and resustain.
  • Deadeye's Mark procs the damage bonus of Relic of Fireworks, creating a burst window for you.


  • Entering and exiting Stealth Stealth removes conditions and grants some Initiative.
  • Rifle's Silent Scope is the cheapest way for you to enter stealth, endurance being the only limiting factor.
  • Shadow Meld provides easy stealth access when no other method is available or you want to extend the duration of stealth.


Main weapon set. Burst, mobility, easy stealth access.

  • Rifle technically has 10 skills, but most of them won't be used much if at all.
  • The basic game plan is the following: spam Skirmisher's Shot (skill #2) until you reach the Malice cap, then enter stealth and follow up with a Malicious Death's Judgment.
  • Kneel swaps your rifle skills for more powerful ones but limits your mobility. The cost usually doesn't justify the payoff, so stick to your Skirmisher's Shot spam. The only real scenario where you'd use Kneel skills for damage is if you're in a safe spot somewhere up on the highground from where you can snipe targets passing below, quickly taking them out with while having proper line of sight. In that case:
    • Three Round Burst (TRB) will be the main skill to spam on the weapon if you do get to Kneel. This is where most of your damage comes from, not to mention Might Might and Malice stacking.
    • Spotter's Shot can be used either to set up burst with the Immobilize Immobilize, or as a cheaper way to reach the Malice cap (Spotter costs 3 Initiative and gives the same amount of Malice as the 6 initiative TRB). The boons provided are also quite good.
  • The only reason most people ever use Kneel is to drop Sniper's Cover (skill #4) - Kneeling inside flips your 4th skill over to Death's Advance which you can then use for stealth access and some mobility. This is one of the best Stealth Stealth stacking methods in the build, use it whenever you're pressured.
  • Death's Retreat is basically the Infiltrator's Arrow of this build when it comes to mobility, but that's just one aspect of it. In combat this serves as a spammable condition cleanse or even combo tool for stealth access when used in a smoke field.
    • We recommend that you set up a bind for "about face" (Options ⇒ Control Options ⇒ Movement). This makes it easier to teleport forward with this skill using the following sequence: about face Death's Retreat about face.
  • At maximum (5 stacks) of Malice you should enter stealth and do a Malicious Death's Judgment. Exceptions include targets at very low health, in that canse it may be quicker to just spam them down with other skills.
    • At maximum Malice prioritize using stolen skills for stealth access, don't waste dodges if you don't have to!
  • Sniper's Cover could sometimes be useful against other ranged specs as the field destroys projectiles.

Rifle burst rotation example:

  1. Deadeye's Mark, which already puts you at 1/5 Malice with Malicious Intent
  2. Skirmisher's Shot x2
  3. Stealth using either a stolen skill or a dodge
  4. Malicious Death's Judgment


This is the secondary set. Good for cleaving downed targets, defending yourself vs melee, or finishing off targets who use projectile denial.

  • Much of the damage here comes from weaving together autoattacks with the Flanking Strike (thief dual) + Larcenous Strike chain. Try not to spam skill 3 too many times in a row because it's very predictable and thus often a waste of initiative.
    • There are exceptions of course. For example spamming Flanking Strike (thief dual) without a target (and without hitting anything) could be used to buy a few extra seconds for your CDs to come back up under heavy pressure, as it evades attacks.
  • Most of the time you should initiate combat with Infiltrator's Strike from a safe distance, preferably also behind something that breaks line of sight. This way you'll always have an escape route via Infiltrator's Return.
  • Dancing Dagger is sort of a filler skill, won't be used much unless you're stuck on S/D but can't afford to go into melee range.
  • Cloak and Dagger does good damage and the Stealth Stealth lets you follow up with a Malicious Tactical Strike for even more damage plus a CC. At 5 Initiative this isn't cheap, but Shadow's Rejuvenation refunds much of the cost.
    • This could be used on AI (clones, pets, minions) if all you need is stealth not the damage, as AI won't dodge it therefore the odds of getting a successful CnD off become higher.

S/D chain example:

  1. Infiltrator's Strike preferably from range to leave an escape route, meanwhile the Immob should set up the next skill.
  2. Cloak and Dagger for damage and stealth.
  3. Malicious Tactical Strike from behind (if possible).
  4. Autoattack a bit while the Daze lasts.
  5. Flanking Strike (thief dual) to avoid incoming attacks and open up Larcenous Strike.
  6. Larcenous Strike
  7. Infiltrator's Return to leave melee range. You should have 5 Malice by now.
  8. Weapon swap and stealth into Malicious Death's Judgment. Note: this can double as a sort of defensive chain too, if you cut out steps 4-6. This way you'll cleanse several conditions and recover health quickly while preventing your target from pressuring you. Once the revealed effect runs out you can repeat the chain, jumping in and out of melee, slowly chipping away at your target's HP with minimal risk to you.

Related Builds


This build has a rating of 5 stars based on 5 votes.
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5 stars
Zenn gave this build 5 stars • April 2024
Still the king of roaming, you'll never kill a deadeye who's playing it safe. Everything here is top tier from mobility to damage. The only real counter is the terrain, I've had so many shots get blocked by random "obstructed" bs on FLAT terrain it's insane, but that's not he build's fault. I use S/D for the second set instead of D/P for better chase and melee.
5 stars
Hanz gave this build 5 stars • January 2024
Extremely obnoxious burst build with tons of Stealth access that continues to be quite popular in WvW.
5 stars
ThaTach gave this build 5 stars • February 2023
easily a five star build, incredible kiting potential, frequent stealth application, high sustained dps and amazing burst damage, you can flip a camp quickly, sentries are down in a second, and i would rarely find a 1v1 matchup difficult while playing this build or almost any variation of it. You can hit high damage numbers as a raw power burst build much much easier than builds in a similar vein, bladesworn for example, has about nothing but it's burst damage(like deadeye), it requires way more effort, and is more easily countered than the burst of a deadeye. It provides a very active and engaging version of kiting and ranging gameplay that I personally feel as though not a lot of other range focused builds offer, and it is relatively simple to start, dont get me wrong the build boasts a pretty high skill ceiling, but for the basics of oneshotting some poor soul off the face of the mists, simply skill 2 three times, roll, and blast em(repeat as many times as necessary)
5 stars
Spharion gave this build 5 stars • November 2022
I use shortbow instead of dagger and pistol. You have the ability to hit multiple targets, as well as a skill to disengage.
5 stars
Varg gave this build 5 stars • May 2022
I love this build so much! Very versatile with good DPS.


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