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The Beginner’s Guide to World vs World Tactics #2

Rush here with issue #2 of The Beginner’s Guide to World vs World Tactics!

This part of the guide will focus on some of the intricate parts of World vs World (WvW). We will take a look at offensive siege weapons, and learn how to run a successful surgical strike! If you missed out on reading issue #1, I have provided a link below.

The Beginner’s Guide to World vs World Tactics

Let’s get started!

Offensive Siege Weapons

Man, they better be drunk to attempt this

 

WvW is siege warfare, so it’s safe to say that you need to know how to use the siege weapons in order to win. There are multiple siege weapons that will help you in different situations, and I’m here to help you learn their special uses. Siege weapons require gold and supply to be built. To get yourself one of these fine tools of slaughter, you must first visit a friendly Siegemaster and buy a blueprint with your gold. After you have the blueprint, you can place it down anywhere in the world. Once enough supply has been supplied the siege weapon is built and you can use it. Now, let’s get to the fun part with all the facts.

Arrow Carts

Experienced WvWer’s will tell you stories of how they either had an entire squad defeated by Arrow Carts, or completely decimated an enemy force with them. Arrow Carts are the anti-infantry siege weapon. What that means is that it specializes in killing players, not taking down gates or walls.

 Arrow Cart Blueprints: 4 Silver coin.png – 30 Supply

Range: 3600

    • Tango-recharge-darker.png 3s Fire – Fire your arrow cart at the target area.
    • Tango-recharge-darker.png 9s Fire Crippling Arrows – Fire your arrow cart at the target area. Arrows that hit cripple the target.
    • Tango-recharge-darker.png 9s Fire Barbed Arrows – Fire your arrow cart at the target area. Arrows that hit bleed the target.

It is relatively cheap given its effectiveness against players. ArenaNet actually had to nerf this siege weapon after Beta Weekend Event #1. Don’t let that dissuade you from using it, Arrow Carts are a pivotal part of WvW. They are most effective when put to defensive uses. You can use it to defend your walls, or defend your siege weapons from being flanked.

The Arrow Carts greatest power is the size of the attacks. Each attack is an Area of Effect (AoE) attack, and they are big. There is about a 1 second wait before the arrows actually come down, but once they start raining on your opponents, they will quickly knock all but the hardiest down to half health in one go. Add in Barbed Arrows to stack bleeding, and Crippling Arrows to prevent anyone from escaping, and you have a powerful weapon in your hands. I save my Crippling Arrows for enemies that start to run away. I use Barbed Arrows on everything, and you should too. If you are defending a keep or tower and there are siege weapons in the distance, you can use your arrows to make the enemy players abandon them. There is no sitting through the barrage from an Arrow Cart, if you don’t move you will die.

Ballista

Ballista, what can I say about them. I rarely saw this siege weapon being used properly. Players would attack gates with these things, which is a huge no-no. They are the cheapest to make which is why so many new players will use them incorrectly.

Ballista Blueprints.png Ballista Blueprints:  6Silver coin.png – 20 Supply

Range: 3000

    • Tango-recharge-darker.png 2s    Fire – Fire a ballista arrow through approaching enemies. Does double damage to siege weapons.
    • Tango-recharge-darker.png 10s Fire Shattering Bolt – Fire a ballista arrow that splinters on contact, bleeding nearby targets.
    • Tango-recharge-darker.png 40s Fire Reinforced Shot - Fire a reinforced ballista bolt. Does bonus damage to siege equipment.

Don’t let the cheap cost fool you, Ballista are powerful siege weapons. All you need to do is practice firing a Ballista through groups of people. Ballista’s biggest drawback is the single bolt fire. It is not an AoE attack, it is a single target line attack. That means that the bolt will fly in a straight line through whatever you aim it at. You can use them to run someone off of a defensive siege weapon. If you can get it to go through enemy players and end up hitting the siege weapon at the same time, you will have mastered the Ballista.

Be careful when using a Ballista, the Shattering Bolt will not pierce enemy players. It is a contact explosion, which means that whatever it hits first, it explodes on. So if you hit a wall, it explodes on a wall. Hit a player, explodes on a player. Hit a rabbit, explode on a rabbit. You get the picture. Reinforced Shot will become your greatest friend in taking down a siege weapon. The damage it puts out is awesome. Hence the 40s cooldown. This siege weapon isn’t as difficult as a Trebuchet though, so count your blessings.

Catapult

Oh ho ho, my favorite siege weapon, simply for its simplicity and power. This siege weapon is the easiest of them all to fire. You only have one actual attack, see how simple?

Catapult Blueprints.png Catapult Blueprints: 8 Silver coin.png – 50 Supply

Range: 4000

    • Turn Left – Turn your Catapult to the left
    • Tango-recharge-darker.png5s  Fire- Fire Boulder/Fire Gravel
    • Turn Right -  Turn your Catapult to the right
    • Tango-recharge-darker.png10s Load Gravel/Load Boulder – Load gravel into the Catapult/Load a boulder into the Catapult

Don’t let the simplicity of the Catapult fool you, it is very effective at its job. You have to hold down the fire button when firing to hit farther targets. It can hit anything up to 4000 units away, which is quite a ways away. You will still be able to see where the boulder or gravel is going to land, so you don’t need a spotter for this one. Gravel is more effective against clustered enemy players, where as boulders are effective against gates and walls. You can place a Catapult safely out of the range of an Arrow Cart, so you won’t have to worry about being run off of it unless they flank you. Take advantage of the range of the attack, and its arc. With proper placement, you can place it behind a cleft and still fire it. There is not much to a Catapult, but remember that it turns very slow, so make sure you have it aimed properly before you start firing.

Flame Ram

If you are in a sieging party, then you will need one of these. The Flame Ram is exactly what it sounds like, a huge battering ram with flames.

Flame Ram Blueprints.png Flame Ram Blueprints: 4 Silver coin.png – 30 Supply

Range: 360 and 450 respectively

    • Ram – Ram target with a forceful attack. Does extra damage to gates, knock back enemies.
    • Tango-recharge-darker.png 15s Flame Blast – Vent fire all around the ram, burning enemies. Burning lasts 2 seconds.

If you have a Flame Ram on your gate, you’re going to have a bad time. I highly suggest that you invest in a Pot of Oil to take one out. You can’t repair your gate if the enemy has a Flame Ram on it, and vice versa. Every siege party will throw one down right in front of the gate, so get it built quickly. Slide it over next to the door to the tower or keep and you can harass the players that run in and out of it. Flame Rams don’t excel at taking walls down, so I would leave them at the gates. I also suggest you prepare to heal yourself constantly if you are going to be the one controlling it. You will be the center of attention to everyone defending, so make sure you smile while you bust their gates down.

Siege Golem

Holy hell, like seriously, holy hell. I had the chance to wear a Siege Golem in the last Beta Weekend Event, and I can’t describe it to you without sounding mentally challenged. Let the giddy giggles commence to everyone that has used one, and the confused looks to those who haven’t.

Siege Golem Blueprints.png Siege Golem Blueprints: 1 Gold coin.png – 100 Supply

Range: 225/400/1,000/800 respectively

    • Punch – Punch
    • Tango-recharge-darker.png12s Whirling Assault – Spin your siege suit forward, knocking back enemies.
    • Tango-recharge-darker.png30s Shield Bubble – Engage the Hazmat suit’s shield bubble.
    • Tango-recharge-darker.png30s Pull – Launch the Siege suit’s fist to pull an enemy to you
    • Eject - Eject from the Siege Golem
So yeah, you’re a bad-ass when you are piloting a Siege Golem. They are effective against gates and walls so keep to those areas. You can also use the Siege Golem to defend allies around you with Shield Bubble, which reacts like a Guardian’s Shield of Absorption. If an enemy is running away from you, you can also pull them back towards you with Pull. This siege weapon can be used anywhere, so think of yourself as Iron Man when you are in it. Be careful though when using a Siege Golem, because you will be considerably slower than every player around you, which means if enough ranged people start to attack you, you will be toast. You will always need some guards around you to protect you from those threats. Siege Golem’s are expensive to build too, do not use them carelessly. Not only would it be a waste of 1 gold for you, but you wasted 100 supply from your allies as well.
Trebuchet
So you don’t like fighting up close eh? You want to rain hell down on people from far away too? Then boy do I have a siege weapon for you.
Trebuchet Blueprints.png Trebuchet Blueprints: 16 Silver coin.png – 100 Supply
Range: 10,000!
    • Turn Left – Press and hold to turn your Trebuchet to the left.
    • Tango-recharge-darker.png5s Fire – Press and hold to fire your Trebuchet shot. Hold down to shoot further.
    • Turn Right – Press and hold to turn your Trebuchet to the right.
    • Tango-recharge-darker.png10s Load Tainted Cows/Load Explosive Shot – Load decaying cows that explode in a poisonous cloud when they land/Load shots that explode on impact.
Yes, you read that correctly. Tainted Cows. Yes, you do want to fire them, and yes they are quite fun to watch flying through the air. The downside to the Trebuchet is it’s slow firing speed and slow turning speed. You also need a spotter at longer ranges, because you will be firing into fog. Find yourself a good friend to head to the front to spot for you, and then fire. It will take practice to learn the distances on everything. Have I mentioned the damage output yet? No? Good. If you hit a player with a direct hit with an Explosive Shot, they will probably die. If you hit a clustered group of enemies with a Tainted Cow, they will suffocate. Try hitting a gate with one, it’s quite fun. Trebuchet shots arc just like Catapults, so you can fire over walls and hit players in courtyards too.
The best placement I ever saw for a Trebuchet was underneath the mountain below the towers on the cliffs in a borderlands map. They were firing the Trebuchet up the side of the cliff and hitting the wall of the towers above. It was an amazing thing to see, and the defenders couldn’t do anything to stop them. Once you learn how far the max distance is, you don’t even need to be anywhere remotely close to what you are firing from. Keep your Trebuchet guarded as well, it is a waste of supply to put one up only to lose it because you were sitting there twiddling your thumbs.
Phew, there you have it with the offensive siege weapons. Each of those bad boys will surely help you in WvW and I hope that my insight will help you play better with them as well. Let’s get to the ninja stuff now, Surgical Strikes.
Surgical Strikes

I think he smells a Dolyak

In WvW, you are free to defeat your enemy however you see fit. You can bull rush them running through a forest, or you can turn their keeps and towers to dust. There are more strategic ways to win in WvW as well. To those of you that don’t know what the term Surgical Strike means, it is a military tactic where a precision attack is made against a target. The target in this case would be the Resource Camps and Pack Dolyaks of the enemy team. There is no easier way to take a keep or tower than to cut off it’s supply. This will stop their ability to upgrade and repair.
Now I told you in my last article that you needed to keep your supply flowing, I will now guide you on how to break that supply chain (insert evil laughter here). Seriously though, if you want to win you are also going to have to break the enemy teams supply chain. Pack Dolyaks and Resource Camps will require different numbers of players, and different strategies as well.
  • Pack Dolyaks

Your target is the Dolyak, don’t ever forget that. You will only succeed when the Dolyak lies dead on the ground. Unguarded Dolyaks are easy to take out. Grab a partner and kill it, it’s that easy. Guarded Dolyaks on the other hand will require a larger force to kill. Whether it is being guarded by NPC’s, players, or both, you must remember that the Dolyak has to die. Depending on the size of the guard I suggest anywhere between 4-8 people to get in and out. If you have a larger number of people, you can assign players to attack the Dolyak, and others to attack the guards. Once the Dolyak is dead, your job is done. If you end up turning it into a suicide run, just make sure the Dolyak dies.

  • Resource Camps
Resource Camp raids are devastating against a defending enemy force. You just removed the supply from the fight and made it easier for you. Resource Camps are the most vulnerable of all the points that you can capture. Once everything in the camp is dead, you simply stand in the circle of influence and wait for it to be captured. Your goal is simple, kill everything.
Camps are filled with the following,

No upgrades

  • 1 Quartermaster – Orders objective and provides upgrades
  • 1 Supervisor – Knocks Down
  • 1 Scout – Blinds – Cripples and Poisons
  • 1 Guard – Stuns – Immobilizes
  • 1 Archer – Knocks Back with Rapid Fire
  • 0-2 Pack Dolyak
If the camp is upgraded, it will also have the following,

Hire Additional Guards

  • 2 Scout – Blinds/Cripples/Poisons
  • 2 Archer – Kocks Back with Rapid Fire
  • 1 Zealot – Burning and Blinds
Form together a large group of players. I suggest a player count between 8-16 to be effective against the defending NPC’s. Remember that the NPC’s hit very hard, and are very hardy. Running into a camp with a minimal force will end in failure most of the time. If there are player defenders, focus them down first. That will make sure that they are quickly removed from the fight, and force them to revive farther away. Once everything is dead, just wait for your world to capture it. An enemy can halt that progress by running into the circle. If even one enemy is in the circle, you can’t capture it. So watch your backs when taking a Resource Camp.

Now how do you get to these things without being spotted? Take advantage of the size of the maps. There are huge gaps where players can run between objectives without being seen. Dolyaks walk along a certain path, and there are many areas where you can set up an ambush. If there is water deep enough to swim in that is around your target, use it. You can breathe underwater, so you don’t have to worry about drowning, plus it is a great way to hide from players.

I lost a defense because of players taking advantage of the water. I was defending the southernmost Resource Camp on one of the borderlands maps and some invader comes running down the bridge towards us. I was defending with a group of about 4 people, and we all went running after the guy. He jumps into the water; we follow him, only to find around 20 other invaders waiting underwater to attack the Resource Camp. You can imagine what happened after that.

Well there we have it folks, this wraps up issue #2 of The Beginner’s Guide to World vs World Tactics. Keep an eye out for issue #3 coming whenever I get around to writing it. Remember to be smart when you play. If you see an opportunity unfolds before your eyes, you should take advantage of it.

It is my greatest wish that these guides be stepping stones in making you a better player in WvW.