Elementalist - Staff DPS

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The community gave this build a rating, making it second-tier: Good.

Focused on: Direct damageUtilityCrowd control.

Designed for:


A backline build providing damage, CC and field support. Requires a precise usage of skills and positioning to survive. Also, somewhat accessible by F2P, more new player friendly and straight to play than Staff Backline

Skill Bar


Skill Variants


  • for personal stability when prone to being caught in CC often.

Template Code




  • and traits add significant damage, but only if you can catch the enemy in your CCs (Especially Static Field) without Stability Stability.


  • If not using


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Berserker stat icon.png
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Superior Rune of Strength
Mighty WvW Infusion


feast option with additional damage reduction.



  • Use as much Marauder stat icon.png Marauder as you feel is necessary then fill out with Berserker stat icon.png Berserker's
  • Avoid inefficient stats like Valkyrie's. Marauder's is strictly better than Valkyrie's when considering effective power and health.


Trade for:
  • Extra survivability
  • good offensive filler sigil when kills are frequent


  • Better Fury Fury uptime in situations where it is not provided by the group.
  • Highest potential damage but difficult to maintain versus Retaliation Retaliation
  • if min'maxing around crit chance cap.


  • highest damage option with frequent kills.
  • equal option to Truffle Steak, profits from external precision sources.



  • This build provides high damage, but is taken over Weaver - Staff Backline for the wide variety of CC available to lock down enemies inside and other group damage sources.
  • Having 2 Staffs is purely for the stacking sigil purpose. As soon as you achieve 25 stacks and gets out of combat you should swap back to the Staff without the stacking sigil.
  • This build requires rapidly switching between attunements. You can reduce the cooldown on an attunement by switching it while you are still casting a skill (this will not interrupt the cast).
  • Whilst being a full Marauder's build, you are still really squish to Hammer revs and power damage in general. Antecipating heating and positioning properly is essential to survive
  • (and sometimes ) will be used mainly for self defense as reposition tool, temporarily avoiding ground heat and denying enemies tunnel visioning on you. Prioritize living over dealing damage. Lightning Flash can also be used while CC'ed.
    • Don't attempt to rely on .
  • You can interrupt by using stow weapon as soon as you are full healed in order to save time

Staff Explanation

  • can consist a decent part of your damage. Despite being a slow projectile, it hits hard (in AoE) if it connects, so don't hesitate to use it. Also helps with self Might Might uptime thanks to
    • is also a good option for cleaving a downed clump, since it bounces.
  • Staff #2 skills are strong damage fillers (with low cooldown) to rotate between while Meteor Shower isn't available. Bear in mind Ice Spike and Eruption aren't instant.
    • makes significant part of your sustained pressure after Meteor Shower. Look for casting it off cooldown to maximize ground pressure.
    • quick cast and good damage, will be used to pick off single targets, try to cast it on enemies stacked to hit multiple foes.
    • whilst being Water gives significant 300-radius damage and justifies, along with the Water 4-5 skills, going into Water Attunement
    • gives reliable damage, assuming the the slow proc time. Can be used as preventive ground pressure and for cleaving.
  • Staff#3 skills are somewhat ignorable in this build, but can bring some utility.
    • Use for the extra CC, it doesn't require LoS.
    • for tiny heals and a water field
    • tiny damage, land it for Burning Burning uptime, which increases damage via , and follow up with a hard hittng skill.
  • , and will be used mainly for the CC along with your team damage pressure. 's direction is based on your where your character is looking. Turn briefly while casting the skill to aim it and effectevily blocking the passage.
  • and can be used to soften condition pressure, benefiting from the large radius, and to remove soft CC on allies, respectively.

Meteor Shower

  • is your main damage source, but it has a long cast time. Try to place it on spots the enemy stack will tend to be, rather than where it is now. Very useful for cleave.
    • Try to be in a safe spot while channeling. If you get interrupted midcast, the amount of meteors and, thus, the total damage will be lower.
    • If you realize the skill won't connect, you have a small window to cancel (stow) the skill before the meteors start to go off, putting it on a 4s CD.
    • Watch out for the incoming damage from Retaliation Retaliation, be ready to heal up.
  • Meteor Shower should always be followed up, as soon as possible, by in to ensure an Immobilize Immobilize from the trait .
    • is also very effective when used inside a Spellbreaker's
  • By the end of the channel, you can find yourself out of position or focused by enemies. You can avoid this in two ways:
    • Use after you start casting it.
    • Use the " trick" (see GYF). This way avoids using but you can find yourself even further away from your zerg. Gfycat:
      Burning Retreat Trick

Conjure Fiery Greatsword

  • (FGS) provides great mobility and a damage boon when wielded. It can be used after casting to increase the damage.
    • You should still swap attunements, mainly between and for damage, while yielding the FGS.
    • Remember that you can retrieve the FGS conjured on the ground if you are still around. It stands for 30s.
  • Cast on top of downed enemies and/or the enemy stack. Despite the small radius, it hits 10 targets and should be used after to maximize damage.
  • will be used mostly for mobility, chasing down and bursting a single target or repositioning.
  • will be taken mainly to deal damage in melee range, while evading through enemies. Try to use it after Firestorm.
  • spam it while on melee to maintain DPS after you burned through the FGS skills, but it isn't worth to drop yet.

High Spike Damage

  1. Start in Fire
  • This combo allows 3 high damage skills to all hit at once if cast quickly, spiking for extremely high damage.

Related Builds

Build rating - 4 stars
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3 Ratings
5 stars
Tao101 gave this build 5 stars July 2020

Staff DPS Ele has been around in some form since the early days of the game and it's testament to how classic this build is, that it's still in play to this day.

It can't be beaten for versatility, high dps output and CC with a little healing and cleansing throw in for good measure. Much more fun to play than backline staff weaver. While weaver has its place with slightly higher dps, Core staff Ele's better survivability and top tier CC make this build a better option for many players.

4 stars
Kurnian gave this build 4 stars December 2019

Amazing newcomer build. Easier to play, compared to staff weaver, and can still pull similar numbers. It has the advantage of maintaining both Air and Fire traitlines while bringing the utility Arcane provides.

4 stars
The Blue Rangerr gave this build 4 stars January 2019

Core staff trades lower DPS for powerful CC. Still dealing higher damage than almost any setup, I would take this build happily in any zerg.