Necromancer, Ranger, Warrior, Elementalist -- all great professions we loved from the original Guild Wars, but folks have been waiting some time to hear about a new profession. Today, that wait ends with the Guardian reveal, the very first Guild Wars 2 exclusive profession.
At a glance, the Guardian fills the obligatory paladin archetype, described as a "devoted fighter who calls upon powerful virtues to smite enemies and protect allies." They aren't restricted to Warrior-esque weaponry either, thanks to their inclination toward magic, and can wield a variety of weapon sets.
Similar to the Dervish from Nightfall, the Guardian relies on buffs, empowered by their passive benefits, and in a supporting role, these benefits can be passed onto other players. These passive abilities are broken down into three different virtues: Justice to smite enemies, Courage to boost defense, and Resolve for passive health regen.
- Justice — Every fifth attack causes burning. Use this skill to make nearby allies' next attacks cause burning. (This disables your Justice for 30 seconds.)
- Courage — Every 30 seconds you are granted Aegis, blocking the next attack. Use this skill to apply Aegis to all nearby allies. (This disables your Courage for 120 seconds.)
- Resolve — You regenerate health. Use this skill to remove conditions and apply Regeneration to all nearby allies. (This disables your Resolve for 120 seconds.)
You've also got a few special skill types to play around with, some reminiscent of profession-exclusive abilities seen in Guild Wars, like the Ritualist-esque spirit weapons.
- Spirit Weapons — The guardian can summon spirit weapons to fight at his side for a limited time. Spirit weapons cannot be attacked by enemies and can be commanded to inflict a powerful attack before disappearing. For example, Hammer of Wisdom can be summoned to fight alongside a guardian, then commanded to knock down an enemy and vanish.
- Symbols — The guardian places symbols on the ground, where they inflict damage to enemies or deliver a benefit to allies. Symbols persist for a few seconds and then go away. For instance, Symbol of Faith is a hammer attack that leaves a transient symbol on the ground, giving allies the Vigor boon.
- Wards — A ward is a marked area on the ground that stops enemies from passing through while allowing allies to move freely. For example, a staff-wielding guardian can create a Line of Warding in front of him that keeps enemies from reaching the allies behind him.
- Aegis — Guardians are adept in the use of Aegis, a removable boon that blocks the next attack. Guardians have access to this boon through the virtue of Courage.
Sounds like every party needs to keep a Guardian on hand. As impressive as all this sounds, you probably prefer watching gameplay videos, right? Right, so here are five snippets of in-game footage depicting the Guardian in action; the Hammer of Wisdom spirit weapon looks pretty damn cool. Some of these skills might sound awfully familiar, especially for Monk players.
Shield of Absorption
Wall of Deflection
Hammer of Wisdom
If you're an asura or charr fan, the new Guardian screenshots should make decent wallpapers. Because honestly, who wants to be a boring ol' human?