Build

Thief - Circus Farmer

Basic.png

Welcome to the Builds Archive. See the ones that gathered dust, were orphaned by their original writers, or became obsolete by balance patches. We keep the orphan builds together and salute the veteran builds that held a position in the good, great, or meta categories.

Focused on: Direct damageMobility.

Designed for:

Overview

The shortbow is incredible for tagging enemies during a farm.
Trick Shot
¼Activation.png
Trick Shot
Bounce an arrow between multiple nearby foes.
Damage.pngDamage: 134
Book.pngNumber of Bounces: 2
Combo.pngCombo Finisher: Physical Projectile
Range.pngRange: 900
can tag up to three targets from range and
Cluster Bomb
3Initiative.png
½Activation.png
Cluster Bomb
Fire a cluster bomb at the target area. Detonate in midair for multiple explosions.
Damage.pngLarge Explosion: 353
Bleed.pngBleeding (4s): 170 Damage
Book.pngNumber of Targets: 5
Radius.pngRadius: 240
Combo.pngCombo Finisher: Blast
Range.pngRange: 900
Detonate Cluster
1Recharge.png
Detonate Cluster
Detonate your cluster bomb in mid-air.
Damage.pngSmall Explosion: 122
Bleed.pngBleeding (4s): 170 Damage
Book.pngNumber of Impacts: 3
Book.pngMaximum Targets per Impact: 3
Radius.pngRadius: 240
can tag 5-9 enemies (though best used in closer proximity). Traits are very flexible and can work with many other build setups. This guide aims to showcase effective methods for both passive and active play. The build is great for farming areas like Mad King's Labyrinth, The Crown Pavilion, and other Living Story releases. It can also be used just as well for many other farms and can easily be tweaked to the fastest runner build or meta dungeon build.

Skill Bar

First Weapon Set

Shortbow
Utility
Elite
Trick Shot
¼Activation.png
Trick Shot
Bounce an arrow between multiple nearby foes.
Damage.pngDamage: 134
Book.pngNumber of Bounces: 2
Combo.pngCombo Finisher: Physical Projectile
Range.pngRange: 900
Cluster Bomb
3Initiative.png
½Activation.png
Cluster Bomb
Fire a cluster bomb at the target area. Detonate in midair for multiple explosions.
Damage.pngLarge Explosion: 353
Bleed.pngBleeding (4s): 170 Damage
Book.pngNumber of Targets: 5
Radius.pngRadius: 240
Combo.pngCombo Finisher: Blast
Range.pngRange: 900
Disabling Shot
4Initiative.png
¼Activation.png
Disabling Shot
Do an evasive leap away from your foe while firing a crippling shot.
Damage.pngDamage: 122
Cripple.pngCripple (2s): -50% Movement Speed
Book.pngEvade: 0.5 seconds
Combo.pngCombo Finisher: Physical Projectile
Range.pngRange: 900
Choking Gas
4Initiative.png
½Activation.png
Choking Gas
Fire an arrow that fills the target area with a poisonous cloud.
Damage.pngDamage: 71
Poison.pngPoison (2s): 67 Damage, -33% Heal Effectiveness
Book.pngNumber of Targets: 5
Book.pngPulses: 4
Duration.pngField Duration: 4 seconds
Radius.pngRadius: 240
Combo.pngCombo Field: Poison
Range.pngRange: 900
Unblockable.pngUnblockable
Infiltrator's Arrow
6Initiative.png
Infiltrator's Arrow
Fire an arrow and shadowstep to the target area, blinding nearby foes.
Blind.pngBlindness (5s): Next outgoing attack misses.
Book.pngNumber of Targets: 3
Radius.pngRadius: 120
Range.pngRange: 900
Signet of Malice
Activation.png
15Recharge.png
Signet of Malice
Signet Passive: Heals when your attack.
Signet Active: Gain health.
Heal.pngSignet of Malice: 132
Heal.pngHealing: 3,275
Infiltrator's Signet
30Recharge.png
Infiltrator's Signet
Signet Passive: Regenerate one extra initiative every ten seconds.
Signet Active: Shadowstep to your foe.
Book.pngInitiative Gain every 10 seconds: 1
Stun-Break.pngBreaks stun
Range.pngRange: 900
Shadowstep
50Recharge.png
Shadowstep
Deception. Shadowstep to target area. Becomes Shadow Return which returns you to your starting area and cures three conditions.
Stun-Break.pngBreaks stun
Range.pngRange: 1,200
Optional.png
Dagger Storm
Activation.png
90Recharge.png
Dagger Storm
Trick. Spin around, reflecting projectiles and throwing daggers that cripple and bleed nearby foes. You can move while spinning.
Damage.pngDamage: 266
Stability.png3Stability (3s): Cannot be knocked down, pushed back, pulled, launched, stunned, dazed, floated, sunk, feared or taunted.
Bleed.pngBleeding (5s): 110 Damage
Cripple.pngCripple (2s): -50% Movement Speed
Radius.pngBoon Application Interval: 3 seconds
Duration.pngDagger Storm Duration: 8 seconds
Combo.pngCombo Finisher: Whirl
Range.pngRange: 900

Variants

Swap Weapon: You just need one shortbow to be effective. These swap variants are optional.

Shortbow allows you to weapon swap for 3 initiative (or another cluster bomb's worth of initiative).
Sword/Pistol has good melee tagging, a small gap closer, and a strong healing potential.
Pistol/Pistol has okay ranged tagging, a strong single target ranged attack, and good healing potential. Be sure to use the appropriate trait in Trickery to maximize this weapon set's usefulness.
Signet of Malice Signet of Malice
Activation.png
15Recharge.png
Signet of Malice
Signet Passive: Heals when your attack.
Signet Active: Gain health.
Heal.pngSignet of Malice: 132
Heal.pngHealing: 3,275
was chosen because of the many hits that shortbow can output.
Trick Shot
¼Activation.png
Trick Shot
Bounce an arrow between multiple nearby foes.
Damage.pngDamage: 134
Book.pngNumber of Bounces: 2
Combo.pngCombo Finisher: Physical Projectile
Range.pngRange: 900
,
Detonate Cluster
1Recharge.png
Detonate Cluster
Detonate your cluster bomb in mid-air.
Damage.pngSmall Explosion: 122
Bleed.pngBleeding (4s): 170 Damage
Book.pngNumber of Impacts: 3
Book.pngMaximum Targets per Impact: 3
Radius.pngRadius: 240
, and
Choking Gas
4Initiative.png
½Activation.png
Choking Gas
Fire an arrow that fills the target area with a poisonous cloud.
Damage.pngDamage: 71
Poison.pngPoison (2s): 67 Damage, -33% Heal Effectiveness
Book.pngNumber of Targets: 5
Book.pngPulses: 4
Duration.pngField Duration: 4 seconds
Radius.pngRadius: 240
Combo.pngCombo Field: Poison
Range.pngRange: 900
Unblockable.pngUnblockable
are very capable healing skills. The optional utility,
Caltrops
1Activation.png
30Recharge.png
Caltrops
Trick. Scatter caltrops that bleed and cripple foes.
Bleed.png2Bleeding (3s): 255 Damage
Cripple.pngCripple (10s): -50% Movement Speed
Duration.pngCaltrops Duration: 10 seconds
Radius.pngRadius: 240
Unblockable.pngUnblockable
, will further help heal the player passively, hitting up to 5 targets a second over 10 seconds.
Withdraw Withdraw
18Recharge.png
Withdraw
Trick. Roll backward while healing and evade attacks. Cures immobilization, chill, and crippling.
Heal.pngHealing: 4,344
Book.pngEvade: 0.75 seconds
can be used for an extra evade and movement skill.
Hide in Shadows Hide in Shadows
1Activation.png
30Recharge.png
Hide in Shadows
Deception. Vanish in stealth and gain regeneration. Cures burning, poison and bleeding.
Heal.pngHealing: 5,240
Stealth.pngStealth (3s): Invisible to foes.
Regeneration.pngRegen (4s): 520 Heal
can provide a burst heal and some condi cleanse.

Optional.png Optional Utility:

Roll for Initiative Roll for Initiative
60Recharge.png
Roll for Initiative
Trick. Evade backward to regenerate initiative and recover from crippled, chilled, and immobilize.
Book.pngInitiative Gain: 6
Book.pngEvade: 0.75 seconds
Stun-Break.pngBreaks stun
Caltrops Caltrops
1Activation.png
30Recharge.png
Caltrops
Trick. Scatter caltrops that bleed and cripple foes.
Bleed.png2Bleeding (3s): 255 Damage
Cripple.pngCripple (10s): -50% Movement Speed
Duration.pngCaltrops Duration: 10 seconds
Radius.pngRadius: 240
Unblockable.pngUnblockable
Shadow Refuge Shadow Refuge
¼Activation.png
60Recharge.png
Shadow Refuge
Deception. Create a pulsing refuge at the target area that heals allies and cloaks them in stealth.
Heal.pngHealing: 1,775
Stealth.pngStealth (3s): Invisible to foes.
Book.pngPulses: 5
Duration.pngDuration: 4 seconds
Radius.pngRadius: 240
Combo.pngCombo Field: Dark
Range.pngRange: 600
Smoke Screen Smoke Screen
½Activation.png
30Recharge.png
Smoke Screen
Deception. Create a smoke screen that blocks projectiles and blinds foes.
Blind.pngBlindness (1s): Next outgoing attack misses.
Duration.pngSmoke Screen Duration: 7 seconds
Combo.pngCombo Field: Smoke
Unblockable.pngUnblockable
Signet of Shadows Signet of Shadows
30Recharge.png
Signet of Shadows
Signet Passive: Grants a 25% increase in movement speed.
Signet Active: Blind foes near your target.
Blind.pngBlindness (5s): Next outgoing attack misses.
Radius.pngRadius: 240
Range.pngRange: 1,200
Signet of Agility Signet of Agility
30Recharge.png
Signet of Agility
Signet Passive: Grants increased precision.
Signet Active: Refills endurance and cure a condition for each nearby allies.
Signet of Agility.pngPassive Effect: 180 Precision
Book.pngConditions Removed: 1
Book.pngEndurance Gain: 100
Book.pngNumber of Targets: 5
Radius.pngRadius: 360

Specializations

A trait spread of 00000 is acceptable for farming on thief as long as the player is equipped in berserker's gear and with a shortbow. No special traits are required. However, there are some traits that help make the process less active and allow for easier, passive play. Those traits are listed below and some trait setups are suggested afterwards.

  • Easy swiftness
Assassin's Retreat Assassin's Retreat
5Recharge.png
Assassin's Retreat
Gain swiftness when you kill a foe.
Swiftness.pngSwiftness (20s): 33% Movement Speed
is probably the easiest way to maintain perma swiftness
Thrill of the Crime Thrill of the Crime
Thrill of the Crime
When you Steal, you and all allies gain fury, might, and swiftness.
Fury.pngFury (10s): 20% Critical Chance
Might.pngMight (10s): 30 Power, 30 Condition Damage
Swiftness.pngSwiftness (10s): 33% Movement Speed
Radius.pngRadius: 360
+
Hastened Replenishment Hastened Replenishment
Hastened Replenishment
You receive initiative when using a heal skill.
Book.pngInitiative: 4
can be used to provide a good amount of swiftness using steal on it's own. This can be further paired with the 3 point minor trait,
Feline Grace Feline Grace
Feline Grace
Dodging returns some of the endurance used.
Book.pngEndurance Gain: 15
, to provide swiftness on dodge.
  • Easy far-range tag
Mug Mug
Mug
Deal damage and gain life when stealing. This attack cannot critically hit enemies.
Damage.pngDamage: 366
Heal.pngHealing: 1,980
+
Long Reach Long Reach
Long Reach
Increases the range on stealing.
Book.pngRange Increase: 600
+
Hastened Replenishment Hastened Replenishment
Hastened Replenishment
You receive initiative when using a heal skill.
Book.pngInitiative: 4
allows you to tag an enemy up to 1500 units every 20 seconds or so.
  • Easy initiative
Opportunist Opportunist
5Recharge.png
Opportunist
Critical hits have a bonus chance to restore initiative.
Book.pngTrigger Chance: 50%
Book.pngInitiative: 1
can passively provide 1-2 initiative every 10 seconds
Quick Pockets Quick Pockets
Quick Pockets
Gain initiative on swapping weapons while in combat.
Book.pngInitiative: 3
can provide 3 initiative every 9 seconds on weapon swap
Quick Recovery Quick Recovery
Quick Recovery
Gain bonus initiative over time.
Book.pngInitiative: 1
Radius.pngInterval: 10 seconds
can passively provide an extra initiative every 10 seconds
Initial Strike Initial Strike
Initial Strike
Attacks with the first weapon-skill slot have a chance to regain initiative.
Book.pngTrigger Chance: 7%
Book.pngInitiative: 1
can passively provide a good amount of initiative
Trickster Trickster
Trickster
Reduces recharge on tricks.
Book.pngRecharge Reduced: 20%
reduces cooldown on
Roll for Initiative
60Recharge.png
Roll for Initiative
Trick. Evade backward to regenerate initiative and recover from crippled, chilled, and immobilize.
Book.pngInitiative Gain: 6
Book.pngEvade: 0.75 seconds
Stun-Break.pngBreaks stun

DPS Variant

As you can tell, there are many beneficial traits in both acrobatics and trickery lines. Incorporating a few into your favorite trait setup can make farming even easier for thieves. Here are a few setups (with variants listed below each one) that work off popular existing builds. Starting with the DPS Variant of the Dungeon Meta:

DPS VariantAdeptMasterGrandmaster

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Variants

Concealed Defeat Concealed Defeat
10Recharge.png
Concealed Defeat
Create a Smoke Screen when downed.
Blind.png7Blindness (1s): Next outgoing attack misses.
Duration.pngDuration: 7 seconds
Combo.pngCombo Field: Smoke
Unblockable.pngUnblockable
Practiced Tolerance Practiced Tolerance
Practiced Tolerance
Gain vitality based on your precision.
Book.pngPrecision converted to Vitality: 7%
for passive health increase
Executioner Executioner
Executioner
Deal extra damage when your target is below the health threshold.
Damage.pngDamage Increase: 20%
Radius.pngHealth Threshold: 50%
Invigorating Precision Invigorating Precision
Invigorating Precision
You are healed for a percentage of outgoing critical hit damage.
Book.pngPercent: 15%
for more healing if need be
Take 2-3 points out of Deadly Arts and put them in Trickery for
Thrill of the Crime Thrill of the Crime
Thrill of the Crime
When you Steal, you and all allies gain fury, might, and swiftness.
Fury.pngFury (10s): 20% Critical Chance
Might.pngMight (10s): 30 Power, 30 Condition Damage
Swiftness.pngSwiftness (10s): 33% Movement Speed
Radius.pngRadius: 360
or
Long Reach Long Reach
Long Reach
Increases the range on stealing.
Book.pngRange Increase: 600

Acrobatics+Trickery Variant

A drastically different approach would be to incorporate multiple aspects of both the Acrobatics and Trickery line. This still tags enemies appropriately but with different perks. The way this is set up, it is possible to tag a single target up to 1500 units away every 20 seconds or so. With a few changes it is possible to get at least 60% swiftness up time using only
Steal
30Recharge.png
Steal
Shadowstep to your foe and steal from them.
Range.pngRange: 1,200
. We can reduce the cooldown on
Roll for Initiative
60Recharge.png
Roll for Initiative
Trick. Evade backward to regenerate initiative and recover from crippled, chilled, and immobilize.
Book.pngInitiative Gain: 6
Book.pngEvade: 0.75 seconds
Stun-Break.pngBreaks stun
and
Caltrops
1Activation.png
30Recharge.png
Caltrops
Trick. Scatter caltrops that bleed and cripple foes.
Bleed.png2Bleeding (3s): 255 Damage
Cripple.pngCripple (10s): -50% Movement Speed
Duration.pngCaltrops Duration: 10 seconds
Radius.pngRadius: 240
Unblockable.pngUnblockable
which helps with tagging and surviving.
Acrobatics+TrickeryAdeptMasterGrandmaster

Can't find such trait "Thief"! Can't find such trait "Thief"! Can't find such trait "Thief"! Can't find such trait "Thief"! Can't find such trait "Thief"!

Variants

Quick Recovery Quick Recovery
Quick Recovery
Gain bonus initiative over time.
Book.pngInitiative: 1
Radius.pngInterval: 10 seconds
can be replaced with
Fleet of Foot Fleet of Foot
10Recharge.png
Fleet of Foot
Dodging removes conditions from you.
Cripple.pngCures Crippled
Weakness.pngCures Weakness
or
Pain Response Pain Response
30Recharge.png
Pain Response
Gain regeneration and remove conditions when struck while your health is below the threshold.
Radius.pngHealth Threshold: 75%
Regeneration.pngRegen (10s): 1,300 Heal
Bleed.pngCures Bleeding
Burn.pngCures Burning
Poison.pngCures Poisoned
for condition clear
Power of Inertia Power of Inertia
Power of Inertia
Gain might whenever you dodge.
Might.pngMight (15s): 30 Power, 30 Condition Damage
for more damage.

The empty Trickery Master trait can be replaced with

Trickster Trickster
Trickster
Reduces recharge on tricks.
Book.pngRecharge Reduced: 20%
(for
Roll for Initiative
60Recharge.png
Roll for Initiative
Trick. Evade backward to regenerate initiative and recover from crippled, chilled, and immobilize.
Book.pngInitiative Gain: 6
Book.pngEvade: 0.75 seconds
Stun-Break.pngBreaks stun
and
Caltrops
1Activation.png
30Recharge.png
Caltrops
Trick. Scatter caltrops that bleed and cripple foes.
Bleed.png2Bleeding (3s): 255 Damage
Cripple.pngCripple (10s): -50% Movement Speed
Duration.pngCaltrops Duration: 10 seconds
Radius.pngRadius: 240
Unblockable.pngUnblockable
)
Thrill of the Crime Thrill of the Crime
Thrill of the Crime
When you Steal, you and all allies gain fury, might, and swiftness.
Fury.pngFury (10s): 20% Critical Chance
Might.pngMight (10s): 30 Power, 30 Condition Damage
Swiftness.pngSwiftness (10s): 33% Movement Speed
Radius.pngRadius: 360
Uncatchable Uncatchable
Uncatchable
Leave behind Caltrops when you dodge. Caltrops bleed and cripple foes.
Bleed.pngBleeding (4s): 170 Damage
Cripple.pngCripple (5s): -50% Movement Speed
Radius.pngRadius: 90
(the caltrops left behind will heal you via
Signet of Malice
Activation.png
15Recharge.png
Signet of Malice
Signet Passive: Heals when your attack.
Signet Active: Gain health.
Heal.pngSignet of Malice: 132
Heal.pngHealing: 3,275
)
Initial Strike Initial Strike
Initial Strike
Attacks with the first weapon-skill slot have a chance to regain initiative.
Book.pngTrigger Chance: 7%
Book.pngInitiative: 1
Ricochet Ricochet
Ricochet
Pistol shots have a chance to bounce to an additional target. Pistol range is increased.
Book.pngTrigger Chance: 50%
Book.pngMaximum Additional Bounces: 3
Book.pngRange Increase: 150
(if using dual pistols)

Weapons

Berserker's Shortbow with a
Superior Sigil of Fire
5Recharge.png
Superior Sigil of Fire.pngSuperior Sigil of Fire
50% Chance on Critical: Trigger a Flame Blast for area of effect damage (240 radius). (Cooldown: 5s)
and
Superior Sigil of Bloodlust
Superior Sigil of Bloodlust.pngSuperior Sigil of Bloodlust
Gain a charge of +10 power each time you kill a foe, five if you kill an enemy player.
. This will allow your sigil to tag extra enemies and increase your overall damage with bloodlust.

Equipment

The best would be to continue wearing the Dungeon meta gear for Thieves: Berserker's with
Superior Rune of the Scholar
Superior Rune of the Scholar.pngSuperior Rune of the Scholar
(1): +25 Power (2): +35 Ferocity (3): +50 Power (4): +65 Ferocity (5): +100 Power (6): +10% damage while your health is above 90%.
.

Other rune options include:

  • Superior Rune of the Centaur
    Superior Rune of the Centaur.pngSuperior Rune of the Centaur
    (1): +25 Power (2): +10% Swiftness Duration (3): +50 Power (4): -50% Incoming Cripple Duration (5): +100 Power (6): +20% Swiftness Duration; When you use a heal skill, you and all nearby allies gain swiftness for 10 seconds. (Cooldown: 10s)
    (mostly useful for catching the zerg from a waypoint)
  • Superior Rune of Strength
    Superior Rune of Strength.pngSuperior Rune of Strength
    (1): +25 Power (2): +10% Might Duration (3): +50 Power (4): +15% Might Duration; 25% chance when struck to gain might for 5 seconds. (Cooldown: 5s) (5): +100 Power (6): +20% Might Duration; +5% damage while under the effects of might.
    (works well with
    Power of Inertia
    Power of Inertia
    Gain might whenever you dodge.
    Might.pngMight (15s): 30 Power, 30 Condition Damage
    )
  • Superior Rune of the Ogre
    Superior Rune of the Ogre.pngSuperior Rune of the Ogre
    (1): +25 Power (2): +35 Ferocity (3): +50 Power (4): 25% chance when struck to summon a rock dog. (Cooldown: 90s) (5): +100 Power (6): +4% Damage
  • Superior Rune of the Flame Legion
    Superior Rune of the Flame Legion.pngSuperior Rune of the Flame Legion
    (1): +25 Power (2): +10% Burning Duration (3): +50 Power (4): 25% chance to cause burning for 1 sec when hit. (Cooldown: 10s) (5): +100 Power (6): +20% Burning Duration; +7% damage against burning foes.
    (it works if running with guardians using
    Virtue of Justice
    25Recharge.png
    Virtue of Justice
    Virtue: Burn foes every few attack.
    Activate: You and your allies inflict burning on the next attack.
    Burn.pngBurning (passive effect) (2s): 264 Damage
    Burn.pngBurning (active effect) (4s): 524 Damage
    Book.pngNumber of Targets: 5
    Book.pngNumber of Attacks to Trigger: 5
    Radius.pngRadius: 600
    )
  • Superior Rune of the Warrior
    Superior Rune of the Warrior.pngSuperior Rune of the Warrior
    (1): +25 Vitality (2): +35 Power (3): +50 Vitality (4): +65 Power (5): +100 Vitality (6): -20% recharge on weapon swap.
    (faster weapon swap to trigger
    Quick Pockets
    Quick Pockets
    Gain initiative on swapping weapons while in combat.
    Book.pngInitiative: 3
    )

Food/Potions

Basically we're trying to maximize dps or magic find. See Magic Find for other ideas. (N.B. Flask of Pumpkin Oil, Lump of Crystallized Nougat, and Sharpening Skulls are considered utility potions.)

Utility Potion

  • Superior Sharpening Stone Superior Sharpening Stone
    Superior Sharpening Stone.pngSuperior Sharpening Stone
    Nourishment (30 m):
    Potion.pngGain power equal to 3% of your precisionGain power equal to 6% of your ferocity+10 Experience from kills
    Consumable
  • Cheaper:
    Hardened Sharpening Stone Hardened Sharpening Stone
    Hardened Sharpening Stone.pngHardened Sharpening Stone
    Nourishment (30 m):
    Potion.pngGain power equal to 2% of your precisionGain power equal to 4% of your ferocity+10 Experience from kills
    Consumable

Food

  • Omnomberry Bar Omnomberry Bar
    Omnomberry Bar.pngOmnomberry Bar
    Nourishment (30 m):
    Food.png30% Magic Find40% Gold from monsters+10 Experience from kills
    Consumable
    or
    Chocolate Omnomberry Cream Chocolate Omnomberry Cream
    Chocolate Omnomberry Cream.pngChocolate Omnomberry Cream
    Nourishment (30 m):
    Food.png+40% magic find while under the effect of a boon+100 Concentration+10 Experience from kills
    Consumable
    .
  • Cheaper:
    Raspberry Peach Bar Raspberry Peach Bar
    Raspberry Peach Bar.pngRaspberry Peach Bar
    Nourishment (30 m):
    Food.png26% Magic Find30% Gold from monsters+10% Experience from kills
    Consumable
    or
    Chocolate Raspberry Cream Chocolate Raspberry Cream
    Chocolate Raspberry Cream.pngChocolate Raspberry Cream
    Nourishment (30 m):
    Food.png32% magic find while under effect of a boon14% Boon duration+10 Experience from kills
    Consumable
    .

Usage

Zombie Mode:

  • Make sure "Autotargeting" is checked in the General Options menu.
  • Keep activating
    Trick Shot Trick Shot
    ¼Activation.png
    Trick Shot
    Bounce an arrow between multiple nearby foes.
    Damage.pngDamage: 134
    Book.pngNumber of Bounces: 2
    Combo.pngCombo Finisher: Physical Projectile
    Range.pngRange: 900

Recouping Initiative (Acro+Trickery Variant):

  • Swap weapons for 3 initiative (9s CD).
  • Use
    Roll for Initiative Roll for Initiative
    60Recharge.png
    Roll for Initiative
    Trick. Evade backward to regenerate initiative and recover from crippled, chilled, and immobilize.
    Book.pngInitiative Gain: 6
    Book.pngEvade: 0.75 seconds
    Stun-Break.pngBreaks stun
    for 6 initiative (48s/60s CD).
  • Use
    Steal
    30Recharge.png
    Steal
    Shadowstep to your foe and steal from them.
    Range.pngRange: 1,200
    for 2 initiative (21½s CD).

Notes:

  • Steal can be effectively used as a 1500 unit gap closer; the initiative gain from it is sub-par compared to other options.
  • It is possible to activate roll for initiative and swap weapons immediately after to cancel the roll. This will allow you to keep your position and recoup 9 initiative almost instantly. Most useful if you have two shortbows equipped.
  • You can also use roll for initiative to cover ground by rolling forwards. The trick to doing so is also documented on the Fastest Runner page.
  • Check “Use Free Camera” in General Options and assign a key to “About Face” in Keyboard Shortcuts. While auto-running, Left Click the screen once, and you can hit "About Face" to turn the character around while the camera faces forward. Then use Roll for Initiative and click the Right Mouse button during the rolling animation to keep running forwards. (You can also practice this with
    Withdraw
    18Recharge.png
    Withdraw
    Trick. Roll backward while healing and evade attacks. Cures immobilization, chill, and crippling.
    Heal.pngHealing: 4,344
    Book.pngEvade: 0.75 seconds
    in open areas).

Healing:

  • Each hit will heal you via
    Signet of Malice
    Activation.png
    15Recharge.png
    Signet of Malice
    Signet Passive: Heals when your attack.
    Signet Active: Gain health.
    Heal.pngSignet of Malice: 132
    Heal.pngHealing: 3,275
  • Stack skills like
    Choking Gas
    4Initiative.png
    ½Activation.png
    Choking Gas
    Fire an arrow that fills the target area with a poisonous cloud.
    Damage.pngDamage: 71
    Poison.pngPoison (2s): 67 Damage, -33% Heal Effectiveness
    Book.pngNumber of Targets: 5
    Book.pngPulses: 4
    Duration.pngField Duration: 4 seconds
    Radius.pngRadius: 240
    Combo.pngCombo Field: Poison
    Range.pngRange: 900
    Unblockable.pngUnblockable
    multiple times in a row on enemies to heal faster.
  • Spam skills like
    Detonate Cluster
    1Recharge.png
    Detonate Cluster
    Detonate your cluster bomb in mid-air.
    Damage.pngSmall Explosion: 122
    Bleed.pngBleeding (4s): 170 Damage
    Book.pngNumber of Impacts: 3
    Book.pngMaximum Targets per Impact: 3
    Radius.pngRadius: 240
    to get 9 hits a second.
  • Use skills like
    Caltrops
    1Activation.png
    30Recharge.png
    Caltrops
    Trick. Scatter caltrops that bleed and cripple foes.
    Bleed.png2Bleeding (3s): 255 Damage
    Cripple.pngCripple (10s): -50% Movement Speed
    Duration.pngCaltrops Duration: 10 seconds
    Radius.pngRadius: 240
    Unblockable.pngUnblockable
    to get a strong sustain heal.

Retaliation is much stronger in PvE than it is in WvW/PvP. Signet of Malice will not offset the damage very much. If you find you are dying to retaliation, then stop spamming and lower your hits per second.

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