Guardian - Core Condition

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

Focused on: Direct damageArea damageMelee damageRanged damageDpsSurvivalRoaming.

Designed for:



A basic and accessible core guardian build that possesses high DPS and excellent survivability. The Dire stat icon.png Dire variant of this build is easily accessible to all core players and costs very little gold to gear.
  • Great DPS
  • Focus on Burns makes it a viable condition build for Core players
  • Can build tanky and lose very little damage
  • Can easily change build for more versatility
  • Focus exclusively on burning can be annoying against Destroyers or Embers
  • Squishy with glass-cannon gear
  • Hard to change traits out without losing a lot of DPS.

Skill Bar


Weapon Variants

  • Greatsword - Can replace Sword/Focus for no other reason than fun.
  • Staff - Decent option when running with a zerg
  • Mace / Hammer - Avoid these.

Skill Variants

Healing Skills
  • - provides a block and is a useful heal when you have trouble sustaining with Litany.
Utility Skills
  • - projectile hate
  • - swiftness and aegis
  • - retaliation and stability, along with a stunbreak
  • - teleport and damage
  • - condition cleanse and very high burning damage
  • - long-duration stability
  • - high CC against champions and projectile hate
Elite Skills
  • - strong defensive tool


Build Code



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

Standard Equipment

Grieving stat icon.png
Grieving stat icon.png
Grieving stat icon.png
Grieving stat icon.png
Grieving stat icon.png
Grieving stat icon.png
Grieving stat icon.png
Grieving stat icon.png
Grieving stat icon.png
Grieving stat icon.png
Grieving stat icon.png
Grieving stat icon.png
Grieving stat icon.png
Grieving stat icon.png
PvE weapon swap.png
Grieving stat icon.png
Grieving stat icon.png
Superior Rune of Balthazar

Variant Equipment


  • Sinister stat icon.png Sinister's - accessible alternative to Grieving stat icon.png Grieving
  • Dire stat icon.png Dire - defensive alternative
  • Viper stat icon.png Viper's / Trailblazer stat icon.png Trailblazer's - fine if you already have it, not recommended otherwise.


Alternative runes are not recommended.


Never replace your Smoldering sigil.

  • - DPS alternative for if using gear with high crit chance
  • - DPS alternative for if using gear with low crit chance


Solo Play

  • - DPS/vit
  • - Higher DPS when used with gear that has high crit chance
  • Can't find such food "Bowl of Snow Truffle Soup"! Please refer to our food index. - budget option
  • , - Dodges + Might
  • - +Dmg, +Karma


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



  • is your bread and butter. Use it as often as possible
  • Your symbols will charge your burning passive very quickly, try to keep mobs in them
  • Use and then follow with , then throw .
    • It's usually best to wait for your to proc first
  • deals high damage and applies considerable Burning Burning
  • Standing inside your symbols gives you powerful boons
  • Don't activate unless you know for certain a creature is about to die and reset its cooldown.
  • Use off cooldown


  • provides an on-demand block
  • is a strong series of blocks
  • is an area blind, but only use it when necessary or if you are about to get a kill to reset its cooldown via
  • removes conditions and provides a small amount of healing.
Build rating - 5 stars
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2 Ratings
5 stars
Jack Armstrong gave this build 5 stars February 2021

Loving this build--finally my Guardian is what I always wanted it to be but it never quite was. Guardian was the first profession I tried, and I've really wanted to like it, but it always ended up being too squishy for me--sure, it has a lot of defensive tricks, but if you don't play it perfectly, you're dead. No more.

Though a Condi build, this one plays just like the Power builds, even using the same weapons. I often like to switch to the Zealous Blade trait and run Greatsword / Sword / Torch. Even in full Dire gear (which I can recommend), the initial burst is surprisingly close to that of the glass cannon Power builds, but now there's a strong follow-up burst of burning damage, and with 23k health 3k armor, it ain't no glass cannon.

It's super cool that it's also a core build with cheap gear, runes, and sigils in the Trading Post.

You can swap the Virtues trait line for Dragonhunter 3-1-1 (or whatever traits you prefer) for a decent Condi DH. You lose the damage boost and cleave of the Permeating Wrath trait, but gain some of it back with fixed traits Defender's Dogma and Pure of Sight, in addition to modified Virtues and access to traps and a trait that boosts run speed. Because of the speed boost, I often do this for farming, some dailies, etc.

Switching Virtues to Firebrand 2-2-3 gives you essentially the Solo Firebrand build, though with different gear and utility skills. Seems like it could be fun to play around with variat

5 stars
Onlywrin gave this build 5 stars September 2020

This is probably the strongest core build in the game for solo play or roaming in open world.