While doing the 'March of the Wardens' quest in Kurzick territory this weekend, I ran into the final wave of Wardens - which frighteningly had (3) Wardens of Earth in it. Yes .. I had seen them before ... but only one at a time in a group. Three at once was devastating until I out-thought the monster AI, but even then it took awhile to take them down with our DP.
This experience got me to thinking ... how devastating would 3-4 Factions Earth Ele's be in a PvP match, especially with a Shadow Step ability added in ?
Yes .. this is easily counterable (most things are if you prepare for it) ... but the thing is, you have to prepare for it - leaving you vulnerable to other builds.
Earth Spikers E/A
16 Earth Magic [12+4 (3+1)]
14/15 Energy Storage [12+2/3]
3 Shadow Arts
Glyph of Sacrifice
(skill of choice - rez, ward, or dmg)(even something like Shadow Refuge)
Basically, the idea is to use Death's Charge to 'warp' into the enemy at strategic locations. Glyph of Sacrifice allows instant cast of Earthquake, followed by Aftershock, Shockwave, and so on down the list. All are .75sec cast times (except Earthquake, but GoS takes care of that).
Total energy cost is 85, but at 15 ES you have 87 with only a +12 focus. That's 3-4 mages each doing 600+ (~200 is armor ignoring too) in 4-5 secs and the 'worst' part is, it's all AoE dmg ...
Yes ... Earthquake causes Exhaustion ... and GoS will make it nearly 2 minutes before Earthquake can be recast. If executed correctly though, it should only need to be done once.
Unless the opposition is WAYYYY spread out and loaded with denial/interrupt and expecting it, each member of their squad should get hit by at least half of the dmg from at least 2 of the mages ... any way you look at it, it's easy cleanup for the remainder of their team. Most, if not all, of their casters will be down .. and any survivors will be severely injured.
I'm sure I havent thought of everything, and maybe there's holes in the plan .. but it still paints a pretty scary picture ...