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  1. #1
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    Thumbs up Mesmers! What are some viable playstyles?

    Mesmers are very complex and will take time to understand well. It is very unique in its approach.

    When I played it, I was specifically testing its viability as a summoner vs traditional mesmer. Admittedly, I don't have a lot of experience with traditional mesmers, most of my shutdown career has been on a ranger. I did play mesmer in GW1 in both PvP and PvE, but I tended to stick to a few builds that worked better with my skills.

    I really liked the GW2 mesmer, but it's clear that I have much to learn about them. I'd like to know how others play the mesmer in both PvE and PvP so we can learn about them together.
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  2. #2
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    Well as far as I am concerned (I played Mesmer for the majority of the time on the beta) the GW2 Mesmer is nothing like the GW1 mesmer. The summons are more like Rit spirits, and you choose the right times to destroy them with a particular effect. I struggled a little with the mesmer in melee, and then ranged felt too disconnected from the rest of the fight. It wasn't until I found a 2 handed sword that I found the sweet middle ground between ranged and melee. I mostly swapped between staff and sword depending on the situation. All of this is PvE, I have yet to do some PvP.

    Edit: Also, kiting, do it.
    Last edited by Raye; 26-05-2012 at 08:10.

  3. #3
    Didn't play last BWE, but I think I'll bite next time. Considering ANet's refusal to make Ranger's interesting, I'll probably play Mesmer + Elementalist. For starters, this will be my Mesmer build.
    http://gw2.luna-atra.fr/skills_tool/...0pbtc3d1e5kolh
    Sword+Torch because it's the coolest set (possibly most offensive one too). Lots of clones and escape mechanisms as optionals. Mass stealth as both an escape and potentially awesome support. Secondary set consists of Scepter+Sword, because that's a pretty damn good defensive setup (dual blocks, triple clones, blind and daze).
    It's probably viable as until a month has passed every random selection of skills is 'viable'. My main worry is the long recharge on sword+torch skills.

  4. #4
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    I think melee is supposed to be hit & run, mixed in with confusing your opponent as to whether you are near or far. Tanking with mesmer is a sure way to die. I would probably use the sword in PvP 1vs1, but I would stay away from it otherwise unless for lulz. I am glad though that they added a skill that has a defensive aspect to the sword skills, so if you take heat you can tank a bit and do more damage before moving out of the way. One advantage to melee though is that your clones are melee too, so they blow up instantly when you shatter them.

    What I am more confused about is the optional skills. I didn't really use them much, and moreover, I didn't get a feel for what would be good ones to take. Any hints?
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  5. #5
    Mesmer was my primary character in the BWE, and the beginner one handed sword was awful. The only redeeming quality of the swordplay is the illusionary leap and swap chain. After I got a pistol I was much more impressed and began thoroughly enjoying the character.

    I also enjoyed the staff skills (chaos storm hurts foes & helps allies ♥) and the two-handed greatsword skills (all 5 of these skills are excellent, and there is no melee component at all to the greatsword - it functions more like a sword-shaped staff actually) for their much improved playability.

    The mesmer's melee is not flavored like true melee, but makes me wonder if the designers were going more for a flavor like illusionary weaponry.

    I agree with rayeLestrange that the feel of the combat is much more like the ritualist. Creating clones (=spirits) and shattering (=destroying) for damage was the most effective gameplay for me. I especially liked Cry of Frustration - the shatter skill that applies the condition confusion.

    My favorite weapon set for repetitive shattering, although not as directly powerful as the staff or the greatsword, is the scepter with the pistol off-hand, with the torch off-hand as a close second. These weapon sets seemed to produce and re-produce the greatest number of clones for shattering.

    As for the optional skills, I did not use them much either. I found it took too much of my time to focus on which key (7-9) I needed to use. I had 1-6 down pat by the end of the BWE, but it was rough trying to convince myself to take the time out from active playing to learn what the 7-9 skills did for me. I imagine when I have more leisure time in the game I will get those memorized, although I do imagine some UI key mapping changes are going to be in the works for me.

  6. #6
    I played mesmer the whole time during the beta, but did not play at all during the stress test. Some of the skills may sound the same, but the mesmer in GW2 is not the mesmer in GW1. In between my computer crashing ( I have since replaced the video card ) and lags, I played my character to level 11 only. It was quite a steep learning curve. Starting with a sword armed mesmer ( not effective at all), then pistol armed, and then I played exclusively with staff carrying mesmer. There are lots of the mechanics that I still have to learn, and some of the mechanics involving the shatterer still baffles me. For example, when you swap weapons, do those clones you made swap weapons also? Well, I am waiting for ANET to give another chance to learn before I can say which play-styles I enjoy most.

  7. #7
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    I spent most of the beta and stress playing greatsword mesmer. While in the starter area, it seemed that i just can more or less charge my lazers away with occasional illusion detonation for kicks.
    However, when i moved to area with level 8 scales and then swamp with aatxes and forest with ettins, it quickly became clear that i have to use all of my skills and rely on illusions to actually kill enemies and stay alive. For shatters, i so far used only mind wrack and cry of frustration. Diversion i feel is more pvp skill or for use with bosses strictly, and distortion i simply didn't use since i was focused on killing most of the time, but i did die couple of times and distortion would probably have saved my butt.

    For instance, i would kill aatxe by opening with mirror blade (watch out for out of range), following with berserker, mind stab and laser until it got close. I would then wave it away, following with mind wrack, more laser and finish with mind stab. This is roughly how it looked. For instance if i got our of range on mirror blade, it would take me longer to kill and i would have lost some hp.

    Now, with more than one monster at hand, things become complex. I have yet to learn to time my shatters better, since more often than not, my illusions assplode to only take away last 5%-10% of enemy's health, which means i doo to much damage to one enemy while i could be focusing on other enemy meanwhile. Real kicker here is that you can shatter your illusions against enemy they were not bound to (shatter against other monster than they are attacking).

    Way i see mind wrack vs cry of frustration, is that latter is better against stronger enemies, as when confused they do seem to attack little less often, and if they don't, i believe the cumulative damage is better (that's just a hunch though, i'd be glad to read some actual data on that).

    Also, i would carry sword in second weapon set and swap just to do blurred frenzy and also for situations when there are too many melee monsters around. And focus just for the speed line.

    I'm totally trying out scepter for good next beta - my initial weapon of choice, except i got overwhelmed by awesomeness of greatsword.

    For example, when you swap weapons, do those clones you made swap weapons also?
    From what i understand, Phantasms have their dedicated weapons, while Clones switch their weapons with you.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Alaris View Post
    I think melee is supposed to be hit & run, mixed in with confusing your opponent as to whether you are near or far.
    As for Mesmer melee, I don't think ANet's thought that one through. The skills lack purpose and seem to imply conflicting playstyles - on the one hand they want to promote leaping, on the other the cd-less weapskill is a chain meaning you have to stick to around for full effect. Itīs not surprising that its probably the most changed weapon skills between demo and bwe and I kinda still expect it to change further.

    As for tanking, if you tank, you die. Virtue of the very little healing.

    Oh and high precision + sigil of superior air + blurred frenzy sounds pretty sweet.

    What I am more confused about is the optional skills. I didn't really use them much, and moreover, I didn't get a feel for what would be good ones to take. Any hints?
    At risk of saying something highly superfluous: use your utility skills. A lot of utility skills offer some incredible defensive potential (Decoy, Blink, all Glamours), so if you did find yourself dying that was a likely cause.

  9. #9
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    Oh yeah, I know I should use utility skills, but after reading the descriptions I wasn't really excited about them and not sure what would fit my builds either. It will take learning...

    As for the sword skills, I think condensating two leap+clone skills into one was genius. It allowed them to add a new skill that allows you to stay frontline a bit longer, which is nice. Still, I would not use sword for anything else than 1vs1 dueling.

    There's also an important tradeoff between blowing up your illusions, and keeping them around longer. Illusions, even clones, actually add dps or dot damage which becomes significant if you maintain 3 of them active. I think both playstyles (blowing them up regularly, or accumulating them) could be viable.
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  10. #10
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    Confusion really doesn't do anything in PvE (yet?) so don't bother with that shatter, even the stun achieves more.
    Also helps to time shatters for when you can bring up another illusion quickly so you always have one or two up in combat.

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