Guild Wars 2 PVP Video: “Captain Hammer” Warrior [Tournament Ep. 3]


GW2 is live!

Here’s my 1st post-launch tournament PVP video, featuring my “Captain Hammer” Warrior build. The competing teams are Maven and Pure Glory.

In this educational video, I discuss:

  1. The changes to the stability buff (now a boon) in late Beta
  2. Controlling and countering opponents
  3. Holding objectives under duress

For detailed information on the spec’s mechanics / traits / gear, please see the Guide to “Captain Hammer” Warrior Build.

Let me know your questions and feedback.

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Posted in Guardian, Guild Wars 2, Necromancer, PVP, Thief, Video, Warrior
32 comments on “Guild Wars 2 PVP Video: “Captain Hammer” Warrior [Tournament Ep. 3]
  1. Nice video Ed. Still a fan, regardless of what game you cover. Are you interested in Storm Legion?

  2. Simon says:

    Nice vid, though I found the profession composition sort of depressing given the length of beta and what i thought was Anets aim of balance.

    It seem warriors (closely followed by guardians) are just too good at the moment, at least one is in most tourney teams, often two, you guys had three, i can’t imaginethat say three equally skilled necros would be as good for the team, any thoughts on the current balance?

    • taugrim says:

      Simon :

      Nice vid, though I found the profession composition sort of depressing given the length of beta and what i thought was Anets aim of balance.

      It seem warriors (closely followed by guardians) are just too good at the moment, at least one is in most tourney teams, often two, you guys had three, i can’t imaginethat say three equally skilled necros would be as good for the team, any thoughts on the current balance?

      I’ve been running 5v5s with whatever 4 other players want to run them, so long as they have a working knowledge of their class, how to spec for group play, and understand how the maps work.

      I’ve seen players of every class rock in tourneys.

      • Simon says:

        No offense, but that doesn’t answer what I asked, I am none the wiser as to how balanced you think the game is at the moment.

        • taugrim says:

          Simon :

          No offense, but that doesn’t answer what I asked, I am none the wiser as to how balanced you think the game is at the moment.

          As I wrote above, I’ve seen players of every class rock in tourneys and sPvP. So that’s a positive indication that things are reasonably balanced.

          Necros are strong. You mentioned 3 in a tourney. So long as their mechanics don’t overlap (e.g. 3 condition-based Necros), they’ll win tourneys.

          GW2 is one of the rare games where team coordination, role composition (note I said role not class), and individual skill factor heavily in determining outcomes.

          • Guardian says:

            It also depends on what “balance” means–1v1, 5v5, as support, as roamer, as DPS, etc. My experience (as a triple meditation guardian–a very good class) has been that Mesmer’s are probably the most successful 1v1 class all around. They can kill, they can run away, they can survive. In large scale battle, though, every class brings something important to the table.

            A lot of people mention certain cheese specs (greatsword warrior, dagger thief). I’m not sure what your experience is but I find warriors balanced–they only whoop you if you sit there and take it. Heartseeker thieves are also doable (although 2+ thieves can instagib most people).

            What I’ve found to be super cheese is pistol-whip rogues. The ability stuns you and does insane damage. Combined with Assassin’s Signet (150% damage on next hit) I’ve been effectively one-shot before–19.5k of pistol whip damage while stunned. That seems broken to me.

            Like Simon I would very much like to hear your in-depth thoughts on balance in GW2. Maybe another TaugVlog? ArenaNet seem to be very active on Reddit so if the video made it to the front page they would likely pay attention.

    • Cesspool says:

      Honestly, i find the balance in this game to be very close to hitting the mark. Sure, some weapon sets could use a tweak here and there, and some other classes may be easier to learn than others..ie..warrior 100blades build. My personal viewpoint is the game needs more time to settle, more time for people to theorcraft and get comfortable with there specs, and only then will we see what needs to be done.

      On a personal note, ive come across some powerful necros, rangers, and engineers. Don’t count them out just yet.

      • taugrim says:

        Cesspool :

        Honestly, i find the balance in this game to be very close to hitting the mark. Sure, some weapon sets could use a tweak here and there, and some other classes may be easier to learn than others..ie..warrior 100blades build. My personal viewpoint is the game needs more time to settle, more time for people to theorcraft and get comfortable with there specs, and only then will we see what needs to be done.

        On a personal note, ive come across some powerful necros, rangers, and engineers. Don’t count them out just yet.

        Agreed on all points.

        ArenaNet made a lot of changes in the last month of Beta, and the majority of those changes seem to have positively impacted balance.

  3. Mike says:

    Ed, any thoughts about a section such as “Friends of Taugrim” on your site, other people whose work you trust and who might have writeups on other classes that you haven’t played yet? I know back in the BWEs I found Top’s Ele writeup almost impossible to google, having a taugrim approved resource list would be pretty useful.

    • taugrim says:

      Mike :

      Ed, any thoughts about a section such as “Friends of Taugrim” on your site, other people whose work you trust and who might have writeups on other classes that you haven’t played yet? I know back in the BWEs I found Top’s Ele writeup almost impossible to google, having a taugrim approved resource list would be pretty useful.

      I don’t have a “Blog Roll” here, for the same reason I don’t do #FF on Twitter. It’s because of the inclusion / exclusion problem.

      I would like to collaborate with other gamers more, but right now with RL work demands and GAMEBREAKER I have limited time to play. I tend to tweet / retweet other people’s content that I find helpful or insightful, because Twitter makes it so easy to share content.

      People are welcome to post links to their stuff here, as long as it’s not spammy.

      I’ve been asked before about setting up forums here, and it’s something I may do at some point, especially as there is sufficient critical mass in terms of community now. But at the moment I don’t have the time to thoughtfully implement forums, secure moderators, etc.

  4. Simon says:

    Cesspool :
    Honestly, i find the balance in this game to be very close to hitting the mark. Sure, some weapon sets could use a tweak here and there, and some other classes may be easier to learn than others..ie..warrior 100blades build. My personal viewpoint is the game needs more time to settle, more time for people to theorcraft and get comfortable with there specs, and only then will we see what needs to be done.
    On a personal note, ive come across some powerful necros, rangers, and engineers. Don’t count them out just yet.

    I’ve also seen some very good players of every profession, but it doesn’t alter that I see certain professions are used an awful lot more than others (and in the case of warrior, stacked more than others) and whilst Taugrim may have the right attitude in that he will play with whoever is availble in his guild, that isn’t the attitude of everyone, some like to min/max and it is percieved certain professions are not up to the level others for tPvP.

  5. Fel says:

    So if your life was dependent on winning the next sPvP match what are you using? “Run and Gun” or “Captain Hammer”?

    Again thanks for the vids. :)

    • taugrim says:

      Fel :

      So if your life was dependent on winning the next sPvP match what are you using? “Run and Gun” or “Captain Hammer”?

      Again thanks for the vids. :)

      Captain Hammer is the conservative (safer) bet, because it scales well with friendlies.

      But it is the harder spec to play IMO, due to more difficult timing (slower animations) compared to Axe mainhand.

  6. Cesspool says:

    Simon :

    Cesspool :
    Honestly, i find the balance in this game to be very close to hitting the mark. Sure, some weapon sets could use a tweak here and there, and some other classes may be easier to learn than others..ie..warrior 100blades build. My personal viewpoint is the game needs more time to settle, more time for people to theorcraft and get comfortable with there specs, and only then will we see what needs to be done.
    On a personal note, ive come across some powerful necros, rangers, and engineers. Don’t count them out just yet.

    I’ve also seen some very good players of every profession, but it doesn’t alter that I see certain professions are used an awful lot more than others (and in the case of warrior, stacked more than others) and whilst Taugrim may have the right attitude in that he will play with whoever is availble in his guild, that isn’t the attitude of everyone, some like to min/max and it is percieved certain professions are not up to the level others for tPvP.

    Honestly, I think thats a misconception originating from peoples inability to get over the “Holy Trinity” concept. The fact that having a variety of classes may be ‘ideal’ is an illusion with every class having the ability to spec multiple ways. Having variety is merely a “spice of life” type thought, although you can still do just fine stacking a group of 5 warriors/guardians/engineers/etc.

    • Simon says:

      Cesspool :

      Simon :

      Cesspool :
      Honestly, i find the balance in this game to be very close to hitting the mark. Sure, some weapon sets could use a tweak here and there, and some other classes may be easier to learn than others..ie..warrior 100blades build. My personal viewpoint is the game needs more time to settle, more time for people to theorcraft and get comfortable with there specs, and only then will we see what needs to be done.
      On a personal note, ive come across some powerful necros, rangers, and engineers. Don’t count them out just yet.

      I’ve also seen some very good players of every profession, but it doesn’t alter that I see certain professions are used an awful lot more than others (and in the case of warrior, stacked more than others) and whilst Taugrim may have the right attitude in that he will play with whoever is availble in his guild, that isn’t the attitude of everyone, some like to min/max and it is percieved certain professions are not up to the level others for tPvP.

      Honestly, I think thats a misconception originating from peoples inability to get over the “Holy Trinity” concept. The fact that having a variety of classes may be ‘ideal’ is an illusion with every class having the ability to spec multiple ways. Having variety is merely a “spice of life” type thought, although you can still do just fine stacking a group of 5 warriors/guardians/engineers/etc.

      The theory is that every class can spec multiple ways and therefore fufill any job, the reality is certain classes are basically considered not up to the job by many teams who want to maximise their chances. I have one fo everythng (except ranger) if a team wanted burst I and I was on my warriro/thief that woudl be fien, if I was on my necro or mesmer a lot of teams would say no thanks, because speccing them for burst is clearly inferior to my warrior /thief. I could make the same point with various classes about things like point holding.

      I don’t see it as anything to do with “holy trinity”, simpy that some classes are better at roles than others and some classes can in fact do multiple roles very well (warrior), because the class balance is not there.

      Some of this is down to balance some is down to fundamental design flaws with certain classes, take Mesmer in some ways pretty good, in others not so, largely down to the shatter mechanic not being very viable (hence most mesmers play a phamtasm build). Also i think part of the reason my warriro stacks to well, is where is the weakness, the trede off, I get the best army, equal best HP, I have ranged weapons, big burst, lots of CC and a huge selection of weapons to give more options.

      I’d also suggest that currently burst is out of balance with defence / condition damage, on my thief I can absolutely melt people with things like haste/pistol whip (as in 2-3 secs sometimes), 1 v 1 this is less of an issue, but teh more players fighting in an area the largr a problem it becomes, because the guy I target, will be more likely to have skills that break CC or reduce damage, etc on cooldown.

      In relation to conditon damage, burst can’t removed and conditions are subject to max stacks.

      If they don’t get their game in order then their “e-sport” will simply not happen, because currently the majority of teams want certain classes to the point they are nearly mandatory.

  7. Tarqon says:

    I honestly think my hammer spec is a lot better than yours.

    http://gw2skills.net/editor/en/?fIAQNAS3ejgO1uxOWP4wBA0jq4KLzDj+hIVh5A;TsAA1CtoMyYkwIrROjkGtCZEy+DA

    No stun breaker but runes of Melandru compensate for that.

    The thing is that if you’re going to sacrifice your damage for control you’d better be enabling your teammates to do their burst as much as possible. Also having a mainhand axe or sword on swap helps a lot against being kited, a huge weakness of the mainhand mace.

  8. Hey Taug,

    Thanks for another great video! I have been greatly enjoying your “Run and Gun” build. I’m eager to give “Captain Hammer” a try. I have also been having a blast with Engineer. Any thoughts on what class you will cover after Warrior? Hope to run into you in game!

    -Raust

    • taugrim says:

      vegascavedude :

      Hey Taug,

      Thanks for another great video! I have been greatly enjoying your “Run and Gun” build. I’m eager to give “Captain Hammer” a try. I have also been having a blast with Engineer. Any thoughts on what class you will cover after Warrior? Hope to run into you in game!

      -Raust

      Mesmer, with my “Legion” build, is the class I’m going to cover next.
      http://www.gw2build.com/builds/taugrims-legion-mesmer-phantasm-1283.html

      I’m up to 10 hours total played on Mesmer in PVP lifetime, and I’ve refined the build and it’s really good for Hot Join sPvP. The next test will be to see if it holds up in 5v5s.

  9. Cesspool says:

    taugrim :

    Tarqon :
    I honestly think my hammer spec is a lot better than yours.
    http://gw2skills.net/editor/en/?fIAQNAS3ejgO1uxOWP4wBA0jq4KLzDj+hIVh5A;TsAA1CtoMyYkwIrROjkGtCZEy+DA
    No stun breaker but runes of Melandru compensate for that.

    Melandru sucks now, with -25% condition duration. In Beta @ -45%, it was incredible.
    Any good condition spec will tear you to shreds. Your build lacks sustained condition removal.

    Taugrim hits the nail on the head in this. What made Taugrim’s “Captain Hammer” so good was the sheer amount of CC, Condition removal, healing, and tanking capability he has.

    Your build is certainly is tanky, also has alot of cc capability, but lacks severly in sustainability in a fight. Sure you have Axe/shield to provide meaningful damage potiential, but the axe burst is terribly easy to anticipate and also evade thanks to dodge rolling.

    Conditions will be the bane of this build as Mending, on its 25 sec cd, will not be enough to save you.

  10. Aakek says:

    Just a note.. as I play mesmer Tree may want to check out using scepter. I have found it to be a great counter for many particularly thief while providing steady reliable dps.

  11. EucridEucrow says:

    vegascavedude :
    Hey Taug,
    Thanks for another great video! I have been greatly enjoying your “Run and Gun” build. I’m eager to give “Captain Hammer” a try. I have also been having a blast with Engineer. Any thoughts on what class you will cover after Warrior? Hope to run into you in game!
    -Raust

    And THAT means you are meat to a whole host of professions. Mesmer especially because they can slip away from you so easily.

  12. EucridEucrow says:

    taugrim :

    Tarqon :
    I honestly think my hammer spec is a lot better than yours.
    http://gw2skills.net/editor/en/?fIAQNAS3ejgO1uxOWP4wBA0jq4KLzDj+hIVh5A;TsAA1CtoMyYkwIrROjkGtCZEy+DA
    No stun breaker but runes of Melandru compensate for that.

    Melandru sucks now, with -25% condition duration. In Beta @ -45%, it was incredible.
    Any good condition spec will tear you to shreds. Your build lacks sustained condition removal.

    HERE we go.

    And THAT means you are meat to a whole host of professions. Mesmer especially because they can slip away from you so easily.

  13. EucridEucrow says:

    Oh by the way, I found the playback on the video(audio is fine) to be jittery. Is that just me?

  14. Andrew says:

    Hey ive been watching your videos since you first started with swtor. Found you from one of your livestreams

    first off, love the guild wars 2 videos!! Anyway I made a video for you, was wondering if you could check it out if you have time? Im a long time fan! If you dont have time that’s cool and I 100% understand! Thanks man!!! – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0L7hB3r1zaE

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