Gambits Part 5
About This Part
I highly recommend you know all the information in the previous parts before coming into this part. This part is very detailed in nature and relies on you already knowing the backbone of the gambit system, as well as general information on all the gambits and how they work. It also will use many acronyms, interchangeable words, and other shorthand without giving extended information.
In the past 4 parts we’ve been mainly going over the gambit system as a whole. We did look at each gambit and went over what they did. But we didn’t look much at where they were used or expand much from there besides listing out what each gambit does.
The Warden is an advanced class. It can be easy to learn the concepts and the gambits, but a lot harder to master. This part will also form the basis for mastering the Warden. This will give concepts to learn the applications of gambits in combat. It will also show how our
rotation skill priority is built.
All information on the gambits in this part is gathered from not being in a spec. It is important to remember that we will not be covering specs until the next part. So information in here either applies to all specs or will specifically say something is better as tank, DPS, ranged, etc. (For example, the 31-3131 line does much more damage as red trait line than blue trait line). It will start with gambit lines and chains, then work on towards single/other gambits. Generally, ITF and Assailment will be covered in the same section if the gambits are similar. Otherwise, ITF will go first, then Assailment/Ranged gambits will be after that. For these gambits, most information will apply to ranged spec, but again technical information will be without a spec.
The reason for doing it in this order, detailed information on gambits and their uses before getting into specs is so we can have background information when we get into the specs. When we get into specs, it will be easy to apply the knowledge from this part with how it related to a spec.
At the end of each sections I go over the usage of the gambits – it shows how they build in the rotation. That can serve as a TL/DR.
The two blue-line, tank, only gambits, 3212 and 3123, will not be covered in this part since they require a spec. They will be covered in the specs part.
What we Look For in Gambits
When assessing gambits and their usefulness, we need to know what to look for! Here are some pointers:
- Total damage dealt
- Over full duration if DoT
- Immediate damage
- Damage type
- Some are “stronger” against mitigations, etc.
- Some are often being affect by traits (Light damage being an example)
- Other buffs/debuffs that may affect future damage
- OT effect duration time
- Total health healed
- Buff amount
- Type of buff
- % increase
- Number increase
- Debuff amount and type
We actually need to touch up on gambit builders before we get into gambits. While these are minor skills, it is still useful to know everything about them. The gambit masteries have already been covered in detail (they are straightforward) and this section will just be focusing on the three basic builders. That is, the three per stance, so 6 basic builders –
They look fairly simple, especially the ITF ones. It is important to note that these are greatly modified by your spec. But do to their relatively infrequent use, and primary use for building gambits, their overall usage doesn’t change based on spec. But, let’s go ahead and look at each builder:
- 1 – Damage
- 2 – Damage (weak)
- 3 – Light DoT – T0
- R1 – Damage. Damage buff. Chance to apply fellowship buff. Chance to DoT.
- R2 – Damage (weak). Damage buff. Two chances to apply two different debuffs.
- R3 – Light DoT – T0. Damage Buff. Chance to increase crit %.
3 and R3 apply the same T0 DoT. This DoT can stack with itself and doesn’t matter which builder it came from.
The builders generally show what the gambit type likely will do. The spear one does straight damage. The shield one does weak damage (without a spec, no defense buff). The fist one does a Light DoT.
The Assailment builders really highlight the yellow spec, as well. They show what the yellow line is meant to do – support (buffs and debuffs). Even without a spec, these have their additional abilities apart from damage.
These are used to build gambits. Gambits masteries are the preferred builder over these. But the overall use is based on what you need built. One is not necessarily used over the others.
Potency gambits… seemingly simple gambits that have a system within the gambit system built around them. The system being Potency. As mentioned early, Potency works like this:
- Use Potency gambit
- Use another gambit
- That gambit is saved in Battle Memory
- Repeat as desired
There is only one exclusive Potency gambit to each ITF and Assailment, the other two are shared…
Besides gaining Potency, here’s what’s going on with the gambits:
- 11 – Deals damage
- R11 – Deals Damage
- 22 – Deals damage. Chance to gain block rating
- 33 – AoE Light DoT – T1
Other than confusion of the “weak shield attack” doing a lot more damage than the “powerful blow”, these are straightforward. The T1 DoT can stack with itself and other T1 Light DoTs. These also may gain various benefits from being specced.
To end this section, we will go over the usefulness of these. This part is mainly important for your skill priority. These gambits’ use are solely in their Potency effect. Now, we need to look at how useful potency is.
If we look at just getting a “free” gambit, they are very useful! But, you have to consider that you need to interrupt your rotation to use a Potency gambit before your next gambit you want stored. Then, on top of that, you can only have one stored. For example, you may want to store a DoT. Well, ideally you want to wait to use this DoT when the other one is nearly expired. So now you are stuck with this DoT in BM. However, in this case, also consider that you now have that DoT cast for the “cost” of a Potency gambit being cast earlier. In this part of your rotation you were able to simplify the gambit by using BM instead of using it. An additional boon to utilizing the Potency system is that there are 3 easy GMs “made” for these gambits. So, you would have been able to use a GM to build the gambit, and given three, it is unlikely the CD will have any effect. So… Potency or no Potency?
Potency! This is a strong system that can often make Warden life easier! There are many situations (some covered before) where the system helps you out a lot. An example is you are tanking a whole lot of mobs and expect to take a lot damage. So, you get 3123 into BM. Now you can just BM for a big heal instead of having to build 3123 again. A DPS example would be storing 12312 in BM. Then, once the DoT from the initial 12312 is nearly gone, starting the line from 123-1231, then using BM to get the final DoT in. Now, you are able to continue about your rotation with a quicker DoT in.
There are many situations and examples where the Potency system is useful. They all rely on the use of one of these 4 gambits. But if you had to choose, which gambit?
11 vs 22 vs 33 vs R11 pros:
- 11 – ?
- 22 – Strongest initial damage, possible buff
- 33 – Light DoT, AoE
- R11 – Ranged
11 is the least useful. Try to avoid using this one. 22 and 33 are both situational. Usually 33 wins out even in single target, but always in AoE. Unless you need immediate damage or are tank spec and just prefer extra defense, 33 is better. R11 is usually best for range unless you are in melee range, then perhaps attempt 33 for the DoT/AoE. Generally, this isn’t the case and you will need the ranged one (R11).
These are used only for potency. Their overall use relies on the use of the potency system. Since the potency system is used frequently, these will be used frequently. 33, 22, and R11 will be used most, depending on spec/situation.
Here is the start of the gambit lines! To start, we will go over some seemingly simple gambits. In this section, we will work on the 32-3232 line, or the area of effect (AoE) Light damage over time (DoT) line.
In this line, here is an example of a gambit that seems straightforward from the tooltip, 3232, or Surety of Death.
It seems simple. You have the damage and buff numbers (red and green). You have the improved functionality in the gambit chain (the blue parts). And you have all the extra info like cost, a description, what type of damage, etc. What this does not tell you is that it really applies a Tier 3 Light DoT. Before I explain, let’s go back a bit to 32, or War Cry.
This one seems nearly the same as 3232, just weaker. It also has no chain effect. So, let’s look at 323, or Brink of Victory…
Just like 32, but stronger. Yet, weaker than 3232 (with no chain effect again). What about the 5-gambit one, 32323, or Desolation?
This one follows the pattern and is stronger than 3232, as well as both 323 and 32. So let’s sort out what we have with these 4 gambits and the information on them…
- 32 – Applies a tier 1 (T1) Light DoT
- 323 – Applies a tier 2 (T2) Light DoT
- 3232 – Applies a tier 3 (T3) Light DoT
- 32323 – Applies a tier 4 (T4) Light DoT
Now, it makes more sense! Going in order of the gambits, each applies a high tier DoT. It makes sense, too, based on what was mentioned in previous parts of each gambit being stronger as it has more builders. But, why does this all matter?
As mentioned earlier in the guide, DoT tiers are a very important part to the Warden’s gambits. For tiers 2 and higher, you cannot have the same DoT on the same mob twice. For tiers 1, and 0, there is no limit. This is a fundamental aspect of Warden DPS and rotation. Knowledge of it can prevent you from being a poorly performing Warden.
To quickly note what we know, to go forward from:
- 32 – T1 DoT – May apply as many as possible
- 323 – T2 DoT – Only 1
- 3232 – T3 DoT – Only 1
- 32323 – T4 DoT – Only 1
This means you cannot just spam the strongest one over and over again and stack that DoT on the mob(s). Look at this rotation:
- … 5 Desolations later…
- Mob dies
With only looking at the tooltip in-game and information before this part, this seems like it would be best. Just using the strongest gambit in the line to make your mob die quickest. However, it has the flaw that the same tier DoTs will stack with each other, when realistically, they don’t. Each use of 32323 only refreshed the duration of the DoT. A better rotation would look like:
- Battle Memory 32323
- Repeat if needed
- … Mob dies
While this rotation is still not the most optimal, it is much better than the first one. Why? It considers DoTs of the same tier do not stack. It tries best to apply all tiers and refreshes the DoTs in order. Another thing you may have noticed is this one took into account Battle Memory! Again, this is a useful tool and was not used in the first rotation.
- What have we done so far?
- Noticed a gambit, 3232, had a tooltip that did not fully explain its effect
- Looked at all the other gambits in the line
- Noticed each gambit applied a different tier DoT
- Analyzed the meaning of the tiers
- Dealt with a rotation scenario that applied what we learned about DoT tiers
Now we know everything about this line! Let’s take a final, full knowledge, look at each gambit to summarize what they do:
- 10 targets AoE
- T1 Light DoT
- + Evade rating
- First in line
- 10 targets AoE
- T2 Light DoT
- + Evade rating
- Second in line
- 6 targets AoE
- T3 Light DoT
- Main-hand damage (about equal to T3 Light DoT damage)
- + Evade rating
- Finisher in line
- 6 targets AoE
- T4 Light DoT
- + Miss chance debuff
- Finisher in line
Before this part, all we knew was that each had a secondary effect (boosted defense and miss chance debuff) and applied an AoE Light DoT. We now have all the extra and hidden information as well. For the final part of this section, let’s look at how useful the gambits in this line are and if you should even be using them…
The AoE Light DoT/32-32323 line is one of the strongest. As briefly covered previously in the guide, DoTs are the strongest part of a Warden’s damage. This includes Light DoTs. This line also has the major benefit of being AoE and a large number of targets, especially 32 and 323. As seen before and we will go into more detail later, this is like the AoE version of 31-3131, but is still useful in single target. To finish off, we will go over situations where this line is useful.
- Single target damage
- AoE damage
- Small defensive boost through
- Evade rating buffs
- Miss chance debuff
Taking that it is a main source of damage for Wardens, it will be a regular line used in rotations. In general you do not have to use this line in order for the chain effect. The only situations you would do this in is if you are refreshing DoTs in order or if you need to debuff the enemies miss chance for a higher amount.
The last thing I want to touch on with this line is 3232 vs 32323. Since we do not want the chain effect, we can freely use both. But if you do chain in the situations previously mentioned, I recommend ending on 32323 for the increased miss chance. Otherwise, if the DoTs will not be able to finish their duration, generally 3232 is actually better. Remember, 3232 is a T3 DoT while 32323 is a T4. Let’s look at their tooltips again:
The T4 DoT does not do much damage in comparison to the T3. 3232 (T3) also does a large amount of extra immediate damage with your main hand weapon. So, if you are in a situation where mobs die fast (trash mobs in most 3-mans, 6-mans, and solo situations), you will do more total damage with 3232.
This line is used frequently for both AoE and even ST damage (although slightly less frequently). 323-32323 are used most often. Generally, they are one of the DoTs to maintain on the enemies.
Reminder: This line does not change at all with Assailment.
Many of the ideas in this, especially with the tiering system, will be used as background information in later sections. Basically, they will assume you have a working idea of how tiers and different effects work. This one went into more detail to introduce the intricacies of gambits.
I highly recommend reading the previous section in conjunction with this if you haven’t. They are both similar and will reference each other.
The Assailment versions won’t be covered here in this section as they are significantly different.
In this section, we will be working on the 31-3131 line, or the single target (ST) Light damage over time (DoT) line. It works out very similarly to the previous section on its brother line, 32-32323. So, let’s take a look each gambit in the line…
Overall, you can see the similarity to 32-32323 line. But there are some inherent differences other than just being single target. We’ll go over each gambit individually.
- Initial Damage
- Light DoT
- Initial Damage
- Main hand
- Weak Light damage
- Light DoT
- Initial Damage
- Initial Damage
- Light DoT
Notice when you apply the DoTs from these gambits, they have a very similar tooltip to 32, 323, 3232. However, they had a red border instead. This means that the type of resistance needed to defend against them is Wound. The yellow border from the 32-32323 line is Cry. One major difference, though, is this line does not apply DoTs in tiers. Even though the DoTs aren’t tiers, they are functionally the same. We’ll go over each gambit…
- 31 – Only 1 DoT
- 313 – Only 1 DoT
- 3131 – Only 1 DoT
These DoTs are also stronger than the AoE versions, however are most comparable to ones of the same gambit number. Similar to 3232, all of the gambits in this line do extra immediate damage as well. Like the previous section, let’s look at some rotations now that we know all of what the gambits really do and the hidden information.
1 high health mob…
- … 10 Spear of Virtues later…
- … Mob dies
Like the previous section, this is not an optimal rotation with the gambit line. Why not? It doesn’t account for the fact that the same DoT doesn’t stack with itself, it only refreshes. Let’s look at a different rotation with the same mob.
- Build 3131 without casting
- Battle Memory to cast 3131
- … Follow the pattern…
- … Mob dies
While this isn’t a perfectly ideal rotation either, it is much better. To make it even better you would need gambits from other lines, but in this section we are only focusing on this line. So, let’s see why it is better:
- Takes use of Battle Memory to allow more gambits to be used
- Factors in that DoTs from the same gambit don’t stack by alternating gambits used
To add why this rotation is still not the most optimal, even just using this line:
- Does not use Battle Preparation to get 3131 ready to cast at the very beginning
- After DoTs are already present, it keeps rotating them instead of opting for Battle Memory and 3131 spam until other DoTs need refreshing
To show what it would look like even more optimized…
- Battle Preparation
- Build 3131
- Build 3131, don’t cast
- Battle Memory
- Refresh DoTs as needed from here on…
- Build 3131, don’t cast
- Battle Memory
- … Repeat…
- … Mob dies…
This is the most optimal rotation given just the 3131 line with full usage of the gambit system. Realistically you won’t be in a situation where you just want to use this line and won’t be able to work in other gambits in your rotation. The reason to show this is to help build a better understanding of the gambits in the line, as well as how you can utilize other aspects of the gambit system then just gambit builders and gambits.
So, now we know all about the 31-3131 line! Let’s take a final look at each gambit and what we know.
- Weak main-hand damage
- Light DoT “T1”
- Medium main-hand damage
- Weak Light damage
- Light DoT “T2”
- Strong main-hand damage
- Light DoT “T3”
For the final part of this section, like the last, we will look the gambit lines effectiveness.
Considering that the 32-32323 line is strong for single target and 31-3131 is like the ST version… We can already assume this line is great for ST situations. We would be right. This is the strongest ST DPS line for the Warden. Your priority should be to use the strongest gambit first, then go down to the weakest. Once in rotation with other lines, keep in mind other gambits may have higher priority and do more damage than the weaker ones in the line (31 and 313). Generally after finishing most of the rotation, you can work in 31 and 313 to get those DoTs, though. 3131 is also a very strong skill to keep in Battle Memory while DPSing. In AoE situations, this line has little merit in comparison to others (in particularly 32-32323). However, if you maintain all other potential DoTs on the mobs, using 3131 in conjunction with BM on alternating targets may increase your damage. Against a small amount of mobs, this is more realistic, especially with just a couple or little more. You can use BM to maintain 3131 and possibly 313 on each target.
These gambits are used similarly to 32-3232. The main difference is these are used primarily in ST. Occasionally they can be weaved into AoE with battle memory. Again, this is a DoT maintaining line. Usually 31 is not maintained, 313 and 3131 usually are.
This section will continue with DoTs, in particularly Bleeds… A main theme of Wardens. While these are not actually as common as it seems they would be and as they were, Bleeds are important to Wardens. Spears have base bleed damage on them. Many traits also affect bleeds. So let’s get started with the Bleed line, 123-12312. Like the previous section, we will take a look at each gambit. The Assailment gambits are fairly different and won’t be covered here.
So, we can see these gambits all follow a theme. Let’s look at what each gambit does.
- 123 – Does damage (difficult to BPE) and a “weak” Bleed DoT
- 1231 – Does damage (difficult to BPE) and a “moderate” Bleed DoT
- 12312 – Does damage (difficult to BPE) and a “strong” Bleed DoT
Before we get into the chain part of this line, let’s go a bit deeper into each gambit individually. Remember how many effects are tier-based with Wardens? Well, bleeds are no different.
- 123 – Tier 1 Bleed
- 1231 – Tier 2 Bleed
- 12312 – Tier 3 Bleed
Okay, so these all provide bleeds, but what is a bleed to begin with? A bleed is just a name for a wound. Other classes have bleeds, mobs sometimes will hit with a bleed, but bleeds are all “wounds”. Wounds are one of the basics negative effects in LOTRO, along with Fear, Poison, and Disease. These all have their own damage category and resistances. So a mob with high wound resistance, or a player with high wound resistances would make these bleeds less effective. So, these skills apply a bleed that is a wound that does damage to the enemy over time. The initial damage done is based on the damage-type of your main-hand weapon (often common, but can be modified and sometimes is something else like “Beleriand” and “Westernesse” and some others), while the bleed is always Common damage. This may be a bit confusing, so let’s summarize what these gambits do, still ignoring chain effects:
- Does initial damage, stronger for more gambit builders
- Damage type based on Main-hand weapon’s damage type
- Applies a tier-based bleed
- Bleed is a wound
- Does Common damage
- Is difficult to Block, Parry, or Evade (BPE)
- Single Target
Now, the chain effect is simple, but unique in how it is done. Unlike the other gambit chains, this one does not have a finisher. Instead, the gambit gets the bonus effect based on the previous gambit used. 123 is the first gambit in the line, so does not have a chain effect. 1231 gets a bonus if you use 123. 12312 gets a bonus if you use 1231, but it does not matter if you use 123 at all.
The other thing that makes this line unique is that the chain effect comes from a debuff on the enemy instead of a buff on you. Most other lines give you a buff that denotes your use of the chain and that you can continue the chain or finish it. These gambits put a “vulnerable” debuff on the enemy. Although this overall functions similar, the difference has some significance. When you use 123 on a mob, you put a debuff on it to make it vulnerable to 1231. And when you use 1231, it will make the mob vulnerable to 12312. Unlike the chains that put a buff on you, this chain effect is target specific. Meaning you cannot switch targets during the chain and still get the chain effect. However, if you switch back to the original target, you will still get the chain effect. For example, you can apply 123 to two targets, then use 1231 on both targets, then 12312 on both targets and get the chain effect on both targets. You can also do 123-1231-12312 on the first target, then 123-1231-12312 on the second target. Both will have the chain effect.
Now that we know how the chain works for this gambit line, what does it do? It is simple, the gambit deals “bonus” damage. This only applies to 1231 and 12312 (the latter being stronger) since 123 starts the line and has no previous gambit to chain off of.
Let’s summarize how each gambit works in the chain.
- Applies a debuff to make the mob vulnerable to 1231
- If the debuff from 123 is present, consumes it and deals bonus damage
- Applies a debuff to make the mob vulnerable to 12312
- If the debuff from 1231 is present, consumes it and deals bonus damage
Now we can conclude everything about the gambits…
123 – The start of the line. This does weak initial damage and applies a T1 Bleed. It also makes the mob vulnerable to 1231.
1231 – The middle of the line. This does moderate initial damage and applies a T2 Bleed. If the debuff from 123 is present, this will deal moderate bonus damage. It also makes the mob vulnerable to 12312.
12312 – The end of the line. This does strong initial damage and applies a T3 Bleed. If the debuff from 1231 is present, this will deal strong bonus damage.
Now that we know everything about this gambit line and the gambits, are they even useful? Like the previous lines, this line is useful! While it may not appear as strong as the 31-3131 for ST or even the 32-32323 line, it is still a strong line in our arsenal. If you are specced into the Red line, this line becomes more useful. Since it largely varies by line, let’s go ahead and take a look at usefulness based on your trait spec and some situations.
It is less useful in Blue. Generally in blue line, you want to focus more on surviving and maintaining other DoTs for aggro/damage. However, it does have its uses. In some longer duration fights you can weave this line into your rotation if you don’t need to focus as much on self-healing and defenses.
In the Yellow line, you are usually in ranged/Assailment stance. If you have to be in melee (ITF) stance, it is similar to blue line effectiveness. However, more often you can use it since you likely won’t be focusing as much on defenses.
“The trait spec this line was made for”… Or the other way around? Either way, these two go together. This line is most useful while in the Red line. The red line has many bonuses to DoT and Bleed damage. It also has some specific bonuses to this line. We will cover these in greater detail in the specialization section of the guide, but it is still good to know this line is stronger while specced red. This line will also make its way into your main rotation, especially in single target fights.
Now that we know how this line is in each spec, let’s finish this section with some situations where this line would be used.
In our first one, we will be specced Blue and be facing a single Boss who does low damage. This means we need not worry about surviving and want to maximize damage and aggro.
- Open with 33 for BM
- Use 12312 (stored in BM now)
- Apply and maintain the 31-3131 and 32-32323 line as noted in the previous sections on those two lines
- Apply 123-1231 in order
- Use BM to use 12312
- Maintain the 31-3131 and 32-32323 lines as priority
- Maintain 123-12312 line
- Forego 31, 32, and 323 in favor of applying 123-12312 if needed
- Keep going until mob dies
If you only had access to the 123-12312 line, it would look a lot like the previous sections – much less efficient than what you could be. But, let’s still cover it to show how this line specifically would be used.
- Build 12312 – Do not cast!
- Cast 12312
We can start building a more typical rotation with this line, though. Using the previous lines we have covered, let’s look at our Single Target rotation:
- Maintain 31-3131
- Maintain 32-32323
- Maintain 123-12312
So, you can see how our rotation is shaping up now. Maintain DoTs, there is also a certain priority when to refresh them (should be about natural with the rotation and order you apply them). It is also important to use this line in order the get the chain effect, however if need you can skip 123 and instead go straight to 1231-12312.
Another DoT maintaining line… This one is a bit different though. Usually the whole line is maintained and the gambits are often used in order for the chain effect. As presented with the examples, sometimes you forego this and save 12312 in BM to perform the chain later. Overall frequency is medium-high, increasingly frequent for the longer gambits.
For this section, we will be continuing with the DoT theme, but going a bit of a different way. That is, we will be going over the morale taps! This mainly includes 312-31232, but we will also go over 13. Let’s start with looking at each gambit…
- 13 (no line) – ST – Does small damage and applies a MToT to the enemy
- 312 – AoE – Applies a MToT to the enemies
- 3123 – AoE – Strong, instant, MT
- 31232 – AoE – Applies a strong MToT to the enemies
Like the others, this doesn’t quite show the full information on these gambits. This first is 13 and 312 apply the same strength MToT. However, they are unique to each other. While, like 123-12312 and 31-3131 there are no official tiers, tiers are a good way to think of it:
- 13 is T1
- 312 is T2
- 31232 is T3
There are two thing you may have noticed with that list. 13 and 312 are different tiers even though they are the same strength and 3123 is not listed. 3123 is not listed because it is all instant and has no over time effect. 13 and 312 even share icons. So, what makes them different tier?
- Can stack with itself
- Debuff is simply called morale tap
- Icon is the same as Fierce Resolve
- Lasts 16 seconds
- Single Target
- Cannot stack with itself
- Debuff is called Fierce Resolve (the same as the skill name)
- Icon is the same as Fierce Resolve
- Lasts 16 seconds
- AoE – 10 targets
You can see why this would cause confusion. They have the same icon and do identical damage. One just can stack (13) and one cannot (312).
Moving on to 31232, what makes it T3?
- It is stronger than 13 and 312
- Cannot stack with itself
- Debuff is called Exultation of Battle (EoB) (same name as skill)
- Icon is also the same as EoB
- Lasts 16 seconds
- AoE – 10 targets
Here is the rest of the information on 3123, as well.
- Strongest immediate morale-tap
- No over time effect
- AoE – 10 targets
So, the gambit line 312-31232 is simple so far. The MTs that are over time cannot stack with each other and their debuff icons/names are the same as the skills. 13, the only other morale tap gambit, comes in decides to have the same icon as 312 while being the same strength. Differentiating between the two is hard, but you can hover over a debuff to see which it is, or remember what you used and when.
Now that we have all the information on these gambits, are morale taps even strong? Yes! Morale taps are one of the most effective set of abilities the Warden has. 312 and 31232 in particularly shine against 10+ mobs. These being AoE means their strength scales with more mobs on you. For example, say 31232 does 500 damage and heals you for 500.
- 1 mob – 500 damage, 500 morale
- 5 mobs – 2,500 damage, 2,500 morale
- 10 mobs – 5,000 damage, 5,000 morale
Keep in mind that ticks every 4 seconds for 16 seconds (with no external modifiers), which results in total over 16 seconds:
- 1 mob – 2,000 damage, 2,000 morale
- 5 mobs – 10,000 damage, 10,000 morale
- 10 mobs – 20,000 damage, 20,000 morale
Keep in mind you also get initial damage + the tick damage over 16 seconds, resulting in more total damage/heal than shown. If you combine 31232 with 312 in those scenarios, assuming it is about a third as effective as 31232 (as shown in images above):
- 1 mob – 175 damage + heal, 1,000 total – 3k with both
- 5 mobs – 875 damage + heal, 5,000 total – 15k with both
- 10 mobs – 1,750 damage + heal, 10,000 total – 30k with both
Note: These numbers were just used for the example, they probably aren’t accurate! A
This shows how strong morale taps are, especially when hitting multiple mobs. When you are solo, tanking, or just need more morale, these are the best way to gain some while you are facing multiple mobs. If you only need morale that instant, 3123 can be better (as we saw in some rotations done earlier), but 31232 can provide less initial strength, but overall more due to it being an over time effect. Also, if there are more than 10 mobs, you can keep using 312 and 31232 to try and get them to hit mobs not already affected.
13 alone isn’t the most effective gambit. Its morale tap isn’t very strong in comparison to using a healing gambit and other damaging gambit. It does only require two gambit builders is bonus, as well as it all being one gambit, though. Although, it is fun to stack many morale taps by spamming this on the same target!
If you are a tank and you have no healer, this is the most important gambit line! You want to maintain 312 and 31232 debuffs on all mobs present. If you are in a single target situation, these are not the strongest gambits, but are still worth of attention. Spamming 13 is a good way to apply multiple morale taps and do decent damage and healing at once. In general it is better to use 21-21212 line to heal and other lines to do damage against single targets. In any situation that is AoE, you will want to be maintaining the MToTs 312 and 31232. Most encounters in 3 and 6 mans, and even landscape mobs, you will want to be using this. Wardens can get by with no healer this way on hard trash mob fights in instances!
If you watched the video in the beginning, I also gave a time for an AoE fight, you can see how morale taps play a very significant role in staying alive.
Like the previous section, this line has an Assailment version. Unlike the last, it is fairly similar! The Assailment version acts the same as the melee version. All 312-31232 provide morale taps. The primary differences:
- Assailment versions are ranged (and still AoE)
- Assailment versions provide a weaker morale return compared to damage dealt (~half the damage dealt)
Overall, their uses are also similar. Speak of…
I use these gambits frequently in solo and grouped content, primarily in AoE situations. In solo, they are a great way to stay alive as any spec in an AoE pull. In group content, they serve the same purpose, but rarely do I need to use them as DPS to stay alive. As tank, I use them for aggro and to stay alive. These often are strong enough that you can tank without a healer in many cases where other group members can also survive. As DPS these can also serve a purpose of maintaining the DoT for DPS, but is usually inferior when you are free to use other gambits. So overall they are used most frequently as tank or solo. Now, since these are a bit complex, we need to look at individual uses when they meet these conditions to be used:
- 31232 – Maintain, frequent
- 312 – Maintain, low priority, semi-frequent
- 3123 – Used only if you need immediate impact
- 12 – Usually not used
The HoT Line! 21-21212! This line is actually fairly straightforward: It buffs you. These buffs usually have heals. Sometimes buffs will also increase defenses. Let’s take a look at each gambit and then go over what they do:
- 21 – “Normal” damage. Small increase to block rating and partial block chance. Small HoT.
- 212 – Negligible damage. Moderate increase to block rating and partial block chance. Moderate HoT.
Those are our starting two gambits. Remember the last two are our finishers (Finishing Skill in the tooltip). Let’s see how our two finishers compare:
- 2121 – “Normal” damage. Large increase to block rating and partial block chance. Increase to incoming healing.
- 21212 – “Normal” damage. Large HoT.
Like nearly everything gambit related, these effectively work as tiers. You cannot have multiple buffs of the same tier at any time. Using a gambit and then using it again will only refresh the buff (set it to its original duration). Note that 2121 and 21212 have the same tier but entirely different buffs, so they are not the same tier of the same the same and you can have both buffs present.
- 21 – Tier 1 HoT and defense boost
- 212 – Tier 2 HoT and defense boost
- 2121 – Tier 3 defense boost
- 21212 – Tier 3 HoT
Notice how 2121 and 21212 may seem weak in comparison to 212. 212 does both and almost as well as the finishers. But, remember, using the gambit chain in order 21-212-finisher results in the finisher being stronger. This effectively makes it:
- 2121 as finisher – Tier 4 defense boost
- 21212 as finisher – Tier 4 HoT
Another hidden thing with this is you cannot combine a non-finisher T3 buff and T4. This means I cannot do the following and get 4 total HoT buffs:
- 21212 (finisher boost)
I would only end up with 3 HoT buffs on me. 21212 (non-finisher) would replace the 21212 (finisher). The same applies if I chose 2121 instead. Let’s summarize each gambit now:
- 21 – Damage, T1 HoT + Defensive Boost
- 212 – Negligible Damage, T2 HoT + Defensive Boost
- 2121 – Damage, T3 Defensive Boost, T4 if used as finisher
- 21212 – Damage, T3 HoT, T4 if used as finisher
Let’s go over some example scenarios where this line would be used and how to use it (assumes you are only using this line for clarity on how to use it).
Tanking a boss:
- 2121 to buff and apply incoming healing buff
- BM – 2121
- BM – 21212
This would keep me healed well while maintaining the 2121 buff (later in that rotation as T4). Another scenario could be solo in the red line, but needing to heal:
- In the middle of usual rotation
- Need heals!
- BM – 21212
- If satisfied with health, get back to damaging!
So, that is pretty simple and straightforward. It gives you a double heal through 21212 while allowing you to get the chain boost on the last one so that is the remaining buff. Starting with 21212 also allows us to get the largest HoT working in from the start. In practice, it is good to think like that so you can be more efficient with your healing and getting back to damage.
By now you can probably tell, like all the previous lines, this line certainly is useful. Whether you are venturing out on your own or tanking for a larger group, this line keeps you alive! This line does its job – heals you while providing a decent defensive buff so you have to worry less about healing. There is not much else to say besides use it when you need to heal! It can also be used when you expect to start taking more damage (prepare the HoTs to do some work after you take the damage).
Now, this line does have a very similar Assailment version! Let’s look at those gambits…
Notice how these also give you a heal over time, just like the ITF versions. Also notice that is all they do give you a HOT. Also, R2121 unlike 2121 gives a HOT and no buff. So the ranged version is effectively similar to the melee version. Their damage is also reflective of their ITF counterpart.
- R21 – T1 HoT
- R212 – T2 HoT
- R2121 – T3 HoT
- R21212 – T4 HoT
Their use is the same as melee version. If you need morale, use them!
ITF vs Assailment pros:
- ITF – Stronger
- Assailment – Ranged
There you have it… If you are at ranged, it is usually best to stick to the ranged version (especially if ranged spec). If melee, stick to ITF version. If ranged, it is only worth switching to ITF just for this line if you need morale real bad and are already at melee range. At that point, you may want to be thinking of other means of staying alive!
These fall in a situational category for usage. They are most frequently used as tank, or in solo situations. In solo, if you need to stay alive and are not in a large AoE situation, these are used. When tanking, I will proactively use these if I have nothing else to do. All share a similar usage amount since I will often chain 21-2121/21212 when used proactively. Of course, as tank, they can also be used in reaction to needing a heal.
The 23-2323 line… The defensive buff line… The line that keeps you from using 21-21212 as often… The line that has some large differences between gambits… Let’s look at what makes that so…
Remember this is also the ranged version since there is no change with Assailment!
You may notice these are quite different like I mentioned. They seem like they are all over the place in what they do. But, let’s look them over to see how we can simplify it:
- 23 – Light DoT. Weak Defense boost
- 232 – Very strong damage. Moderate defense boost
- 2323 – Strong defense boost
- 23232 – Fellowship HoT. Strong defense boost
Before we get into 3232 vs. 32323, we need to go over the thing we keep going over… Tiers!
- 23 – T1 Defense buff.
- 232 – T2 Defense buff.
- 2323 – T3 Defense buff. T4 if chained.
- 23232 – T3 Defense buff. T4 if chained.
So, these gambit follow the pattern of the 21-21212 from the last sections. One thing you may notice is 32323 seems like it is automatically better than 3232. There is one thing we didn’t cover about these two yet:
- 2323 – Buffs physical mitigation
- 23232 – Buffs tactical mitigation
Still, 23232 seems a lot better. This line ends up being very dependent on your spec. I will go ahead and say 2323 is relatively useless compared to 23232 in typical situations. 2323 only has merit if you are a tank spec and need physical mitigation! Even though we are supposed to go over this in the next part of gambits, we need to cover these two gambits and how specs affect them. If you are red or yellow line, this is mostly how they are. Some damage numbers may be slightly different. If you get some traits in the blue line, it may modify the buff numbers. Let’s look at the difference blue line makes with 2323 and 23232, though…
- 2323 – Also buffs a small % of physical mitigation
- 23232 – Also buffs a small % of tactical mitigation
Buffing a % means you can get past the “rating ” caps. For Wardens, once you get your rating high enough to get to 50% physical or tactical mitigation, the % won’t go up anymore. These 2 skills allow you to get past that %. So if you are tanking and need the extra small % damage reduction, you can maintain both buffs to do so.
Before we finally get past it, one more point on 2323 vs 23232 – Why not both? You can use both. They are the same tier, but you can have buffs from both present at a single time. Usually 3232 is small enough of a boost you would rather do something else entirely than worry about its buff along with 23232, also.
Back to the other two gambits, 23 and 232. 23 effectively applies a T1 Light DoT that cannot stack with itself but can stack with other T1 Light DoTs. 232 just does a lot of damage. It is one of our highest initial damage skills. So, let’s summarize these gambits.
- 23 – T1 Defense Buff – T1 Light DoT
- 232 – T2 Defense Buff – Strong initial damage
- 2323 – T3 Defense Buff, T4 if Chained – Nothing else
- 23232 – T3 Defense Buff, T4 if Chained – Fellowship HoT (~T1.5)
Time for usefulness! The line as a whole is a bit hard to evaluate. To start, they all generally boost you defenses. As a tank I can say 23 and 232 are usually useless defensive boosts. As a damage if you need a defensive boost you are generally better off with 21-21212 line. Only as a tank are 2323 and 23232 sometimes worth the defensive boost. Now that we know about that part of the gambits, let’s go over each with their other aspects in mind:
- 23 – If you want a DoT, or Light DoT, you’d want to use something else. The defensive buff is negligible enough that if you want both, you’d be better off using something else for the DoT and something else for the buff.
- 232 – Generally not worth casting. But, if you need large immediate on impact damage for some reason, this is your best gambit to use! Some single mobs die quick where this would be most useful. In AoE consider using an AoE gambit even if for just the immediate damage.
- 2323 – Only useful as tank, and only sometimes at that.
- 23232 – The most useful gambit in the line! Provides a small defensive boost. But it really shines as a fellowship (and self) heal. It is great to pre-cast before a pull to heal the fellowship. Out of combat it is good to do some (small) healing. As a tank, I use this frequently as it helps somewhat keep the fellowship alive, pulls aggro, puts a HoT on me, gives a defensive buff.
So, onto using this line. If there is a single mob about to die:
- 232 for big immediate damage
That one was easy! How about if you are tanking in an instance with a fellowship, going into a boss fight:
- 2323 before the pull with Battle Preparation (BP)
- 23232 as pulling (BP again)
- BM – 23232
- 232 until buffs or debuffs are about to wear off
- Preferable maintain 2323-23232 as chain finishers for T4 effects
- Continue 232 as filler for damage
Just a quick reminder that this is in no way realistic. It is just to show how the line would be used and show strengths of the line and its uses. Overall I hardly use 23-2323 and mainly use 23232, though.
23-232 are unused. There is always something better to do.
2323 is only worth using before a fight, with battle preparation. Even though I only use it if I am bored and have no other gambit to use before the pull.
23232 is the most used of this line, but still not too frequently used. It does have its purpose and use, mainly as a tank. It is okay for healing the entire fellowship, as well as out of combat with battle preparation.
Taking a break from over-time effects, we’re going to look at the interrupt line, 12-1212 and R12-1212.
There are some things we can clear up before looking at the gambits.
- The only thing these gambits have for sure in common is the interrupt
- All are “Fast”
- All are immediate interrupts
- There is no chain effect
With that in mind, let’s take a look at the gambits!
So, what does each gambit do that another doesn’t? Or what does a gambit not do that another does?
- 12 – Small damage
- 121 – Three moderate-damage attacks
- 1212 – Three slightly stronger than moderate-damage attacks, parry rating buff
- R12 – Ignoring that you are using your boot from range somehow, this one does small(er) damage as well
- R121 – A single strong attack
- R1212 – A single very strong attack
A quick note: 1212 gives a parry rating of 2121 – coincidence? (Probably)
The usefulness of these is fairly simple – You use them if you want to interrupt! 12 is the quickest to interrupt with. 121 is the strongest per gambit builder used one. 1212 also gives you a buff if you choose it. There isn’t much reason to use 1212 outside of interrupts for the buff, it isn’t a large enough buff to warrant use. If your rotation wasn’t already crowded as a tank, it could be considered. For the ranged ones, the same ideas seem like they apply, however R1212 does not apply a parry buff. Instead, it just deals a small, but noticeable, amount of damage more than R121. R121 is still stronger per builder than R1212 like the ITF ones.
There is a significant difference, though… R121-1212 are two of the strongest ranged skills in addition to being ‘fast’.
So, let’s summarize the gambits:
- ALL – Go off quick (Fast). Interrupt inductions.
- 12 – Quick to build, small damage
- 121 – Strongest damage to gambit builder ratio
- 1212 – Moderate damage and buffs you
- R12 – Quick to build, very small damage
- R121 – Strongest damage to gambit builder ratio (even more-so than 121)
- R1212 – Strongest total damage
If you have the option to easily use 121 over 12, it is much better. Here is an example of how or why that may occur:
- Going about killing a mob
- Starts casting something that would one-shot you if it goes off
- Already have 1 built
- Use GM12
- Cast 121
- Your safe! – At least from that one-shot ability
The same does not apply to the ranged versions… Another situation:
- Going about killing a mob (again)
- This one also wants to one-shot you, so it starts casting its one-shot ability
- Use GMR12
- Use GMR11
- Cast 121 to quickly interrupt and deal a large amount of damage.
- Once again you are safe! But you also dealt significantly more damage
An important distinction with the ranged versions is you want to try to use R121 and R1212 much more than the ITF versions.
Usually interrupts aren’t actually as important as these. It was just to emphasize the two different situations to use them. Don’t take it too lightly either because sometimes interrupts can lead to killing you, though, like 8 second stuns!
There is one more thing we need to go over… For a short duration after using one of these gambits, it cannot interrupt again. This lasts about 10 seconds. But, this is actually a minor detail since you extremely rarely need to interrupt 3+ times in 10 seconds.
Let’s go ahead and look at look at usage:
These are used whenever you need to interrupt. The frequency is entirely dependent on the situation. Frequency tends to go up with harder content. Which one to use is pretty simple:
In the Fray
- 12 – Used most. Quick interrupt, easiest to use, quickest
- 121 – Sometimes used over 12. More damage, harder to use, slower than 12
- 1212 – No reason to use
- R12 – Used least. Quick interrupt, easiest to use, quickest. Very weak.
- R121 – Used very frequently in ‘rotation’ due to high damage and quickly going off. Easy to use and strongest builder-gambit damage ratio.
- R121 – Used frequently in rotation due to high damage, as well. Frequency is slightly lower due to being more gambit builders and slightly less efficient.
ITF vs Assailment
- ITF>Assailment if in melee
- Assailment>ITF if at range
- Switch stance to Assailment to use it if you need to interrupt and be ranged
This one, unlike the past sections, won’t cover a gambit line. Instead, it covers a gambit pattern. This pattern follows 132-1321-13212. This will also cover the ranged version since they are quite similar. Let’s have a look at each gambit.
These gambits all have scattered ideas, but follow the same pattern to be built. So, we need to look at the individual gambits:
- 132 – Removes corruption, small damage
- 1321 – Decreases attack duration, small damage
- 1232, Increase melee damage, moderate damage
- R132 – Removes corruption, small damage
- R1321 – Decreases attack duration, small damage
- R12312 – Increases ranged damage, moderate damage
You probably notice the ranged counterparts function almost exactly the same. For simplicity sake, we will cover these as if they are the same.
132 is straightforward, it removes 1 corruption from an enemy.
1321 increases your attack speed, but by a small amount.
13212 increases your melee/ranged damage, but also by a small amount.
For ITF, the immediate damage all of these do not make them any more worthy of use. So, the question is, are the buffs useful enough for these to be used in our rotation?
- 132 – No buff! Used to remove corruption
- 1321 – Not worth using. Too small boost and could use something better.
- 13212 – Also not worth using. Too small boost and could also use something better.
For Assailment, these are more interesting. Remember that Assailment and the yellow line in general also focuses on support, including buffs. That means R1321 and R13212 get much more interesting. So, let’s look at them with evaluating their effectiveness
- R132 – Low damage, otherwise situational – Ineffective for rotational use.
- R1231 – Low damage, 4% decreased attack duration – Too little damage and too small of a buff for rotational use.
- R12312 – Moderate damage, 5% increased ranged damage – As we have seen and will see, this is a relatively strong ranged skill alone without the damage buff. The damage buff makes it more appealing. Most useful of the three so far.
Let’s review how often these gambits are used and when to use them…
132/R132 – Used to remove corruption, dependent on situation. I notice I rarely use them.
1321/13212 – I do not use these unless I want to see Warden’s Triumph (13212) animation…
R1321 – Another skill that is too weak to see any use
R13212 – This skill’s damage alone makes it worth considering for rotational usage. The damage buff just makes it worth more. This leads to it being a maintenance skill for ranged combat. That gives it moderate frequency usage.
Continuing with patterns, we’ll go over 131-1313. This pattern also includes 13, but we already went over that in the morale taps section! Again these gambits are pretty unique, it is just their gambit builders follower a pattern. It is worth a quick reminder that this does not apply to R13-R1313, which is a gambit line.
Again, we have some pretty simple skills! 131 simply deals a small amount of damage, twice. 1313 deals a small amount of damage but dazes the enemy on a crit. As shown, the daze breaks after damage after 3 seconds. Due to the chance nature of the daze, it will not be consistent in dazing an enemy (which is inferior to stunning anyway) and can’t be reliably used as CC.
Their damage compared to gambits we saw in previous sections is really small. They do not have any other really beneficial effect either. That leads to them being not useful.
That was pretty short…
I do not use these gambits. They just aren’t good enough to ever be worth using.
We are almost done with In the Fray gambits! We just have these last two gambits left – 12131 and 3121. We’ll also cover their Assailment versions since they are pretty similar. Well, there are actually two more gambits after that, but we aren’t covering them in this part since they require you to be tank spec.
As you can see, these again are two very different skills, and are only covered together because they don’t belong anywhere else. The ranged versions similarly don’t belong anywhere else. So, let’s get into them:
12131/R12131 – This a utility skill that restores power. Restoring power, especially without a cooldown can be very powerful. Also notice this skill has no cost (other than gambits builders!). It gives:
- Small amount of immediate power
- 2% power every 4 seconds for 16 seconds (8% total)
This may not seem strong, but in comparison to other classes’ options to restore power, it is. Many power restores are CD-based and limit your abilities somehow (via cast time, channel, immobilization, etc.). This one, however, you can freely use as much as you want to restore power. So whenever you need power, you can use. This is another boon to the Warden class, we can avoid every running out of power and can self-sustain in hour, day, week… long fights at least power-wise!
There is an important distinction between the uses of R12131 and 12131, though. Due to R12131’s relative strength compared to other ranged gambits, we can fit it into our rotation. Otherwise they have a shared effect that they are both used to restore power.
3231 – A ranged AoE… In ITF! R3231 is also a ranged AoE, but in Assailment. You can see they share the name, but do have slightly different effects. We’ll go over where they are the same first:
- 6 target AoE
- 10 meter radius
- 30 meter range
- Deal Light damage
- Cry resistance
- Power cost
Where they are different:
|In the Fray||Assailment|
|Moderate immediate damage
“2.5k” total damage
|Weak immediate damage, DoT
“1k + 0.5k*4” = “3k” total damage
Numbers are just approximations based on skill damage with my stats, as shown in the tooltips above. Scaling and traits can greatly modify DoT and even immediate damage, so keep in mind that is nothing to perfectly go by.
The Assailment version is stronger, which seems natural as that is the ranged spec. So, if you are in a situation where you need ranged damage, especially AoE, this gambit has a purpose. The ranged version is stronger, but if you are in ITF and just need a hit (for aggro, tagging, etc.), it is not worth switching stances just to use the ranged one. Overall the Assailment one can work its way into the rotation for damage in AoE situations, and the melee one is based on specific ranged AoE needs:
- Mob tagging
- Finish off mobs at range while maintaining melee target
If you find you need to use this a lot for ranged damage, you are probably better off switching stances and using the ranged version and other Assailment gambits! That is, if you can’t get back to melee range to use your stronger ITF gambits.
R12131 – Used in ‘rotation’ for ranged damage due to its large amount of damage. It would be very high frequency, but because it has a large number of builders, its frequency is decreased to moderate-high. Also situationally used to restore power, but rarely needed since you use it naturally in rotation.
12131 – Situationally used to restore power. Like the HoTs, usage is based on if you need power. I use them when I run low on power and can freely cast the gambit, no matter what spec. Frequency is low to none for short fights and slowly builds up to low-moderate frequency in long fights (often with breaks when pots are used).
3231 – I use this infrequently. It only has a niche purpose of ranged AoE damage while melee.
R3231 – This is decent for AoE damage as ranged spec. Like melee AoE DoTs, this’ll be something that is maintained rather “spammed”. Overall usage is moderate-very high frequency for AoE (depending on number of targets), and moderate for ST, as it will be maintained.
In this section, we will start with Assailment gambits! At least, the ones that are different from ITF. Also a quick reminder that this information applies more so to yellow line than the others due to the stance and spec going hand-in-hand and being ranged. This info will still be valid for all specs, though.
So, let’s get to it! In this section, we will cover R13-R1313. This line was just a pattern in ITF and is very different in Assailment…
This is the first complex line in a while… So it will be a longer section again. Let’s start with what they all have in common:
- Deal damage
- Outgoing damage debuff
- Chain effect similar to 123-12312 (no “finisher”, just chain off using in order. First gambit gets no benefit)
And their differences:
- Damage dealt
- R13 and R131 deal similar “moderate” damage
- R1313 is significantly weaker dealing “weak” damage
- Debuff strength
- Strength order: R1313>R131>R13
- Chain bonus damage
- R1313>R131 damage dealt
- R1313 applies a daze on crits
Now, their debuffs while in common are different –
- R13 – T1
- R131 – T2
- R1313 – T3
Even though R13 and R131 have the same % debuff, their tiers are different. Also the way their tiers work are different than just about everything else with the Warden. Applying a stronger tier will remove the other tiers and be the dominant debuff until it expires. This means the tiers cannot stack with each other, so going about this rotation (debuff-wise) will not work:
That will not give 2%, 2%, and 4%. It will only result in a 4% debuff. Similarly,
will result in a 4% debuff. So, that is how the debuffs work. Let’s go ahead and cover the R1313 debuff. It works exactly like 1313 –
- Dazes whenever it crits
- 100% chance to break after damage after 3 seconds
Like 1313, using this for the daze alone is not worth it at all. So, let’s look at the other parts of these gambits, starting with the chain effects:
- R13 – No chain effect, starts the chain
- R131 – Chain effect adding a small amount of damage, continues the chain (can also start the chain in the middle)
- R1313 – Chain effect adding a larger amount of damage, though still small amount, ends the chain
Although the chain should be used whenever possible, R1313 is too weak even with the chain damage to be worth using in most situations. Given my skill damage numbers, R1313+Chain is less damage than R13. The primary chain we need to worry about is R13-R131, then.
So, let’s look at an example rotation assuming only this line is used:
- R11 (or R33 if GMR11 is on CD)
It is a pretty boring and simple rotation, but it is effective. It starts with storing R131 in BM, then chaining R13-131 continuously with potency interruptions for R131. Later, we will see it is actually bad to store R131 in BM when focusing on damage. Unlike most other rotations shown, this one shows how a Warden can burst, and is actually best done with Assailment (both stance and spec).
Now that we covered everything, let’s see if they are actually used…
The first two gambits are used frequently and when possible, in chain. They are mostly used in the yellow line, and only get stronger in it. As another spec, you are always better off in melee, but if you need ranged damage (outside of your regular skills), these are your go-to gambits. R13 and R131 have about the same frequency of frequent with R131 being slightly higher due to being stronger. R1313 is generally not used because it is too weak.
In this section, we will cover the R123-12312 line. It actually is similar to the ITF line, but has a couple significant enough differences to make them seem completely different.
The difference being the don’t apply a DoT. The ITF version, as we saw, were also difficult to BPE, did initial damage, but also applies a DoT and had a chain effect. So, let’s go over what these ranged ones do:
- R123 – Damage, hard to BPE
- R1231 – Slightly more damage, hard to BPE
- R12312 – Slightly more damage, hard to BPE. “applies an addition damage over time effect to the target.”
As seen in part 4 of Gambits, after extensive testing I have found no DoT applied by R12312. From now on we will assume there is no DoT, no debuff, and that part of the description just doesn’t exist. This screenshot will show that it applied no DoT.
You can see I already had a T0 DoT on the enemy, and when I cast R12312, there was no additional DoT present and the combat log shows no other benefit than the initial damage.
Okay, back to the gambit line! They are all pretty simple, now knowing how the “DoT” works, the gambits are all the same with very slightly more damage being dealt for the larger gambits. These deal less damage than the R13-1313 line we already covered. They also have no chain effect. The only boon to them is the hard to BPE part, but if you have a decent amount of the Finesse stat, that goes away, and it wasn’t even significant to begin with…
These have no use! I do not use them or recommend it really. Use is nonexistent. If R12312 properly applied a DoT, it would need to be looked into for usage.
In this section, we will go over R31-3131. It has a strong ITF counterpart, so are the javelin ones as strong?
These are fairly simple. They all decrease the critical defense rating of the enemy, and otherwise:
- R31 – T1 Debuff. Small damage
- R313 – T2 Debuff. Small damage+smaller Light damage
- R3131 – T3 Debuff. Small damage+smaller Light damage (slightly stronger than R313)
These categorize into the debuff category for their use. Since their damage is weak (compare R3131 to the R12131 we already saw, even), their primary use would need to be for the debuff. The debuff itself is a good type of debuff we look for in ranged damage, but is too small to be worthwhile. As it stands, these aren’t too useful, so…
These gambits are not worth using. Their effect is minimal and there are better things to do, even at range. Their use is very low frequency to nonexistent.
So, that is a lot of information on the gambits. By now, you should know what is useful and know why stuff is used when. You will see the skill priority apply the information here. It is important to remember a lot of the information here if you want to be a better Warden and not just rely on the rotation since a lot of stuff is situational. Even the “simple” 31-3131 line and R13-1313 have their complications along with traits that make it even more case-by-case what you most want to use when.
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