It has often been said that the best defense is a good offense, and in this capacity the warrior rivals his/her peers. In Part 2 of the Warrior Overview, players will be introduced to various roles, the offensive souls and play-styles, in addition to suggested talent specializations and rotations.
What readers can expect from this guide is to increase their understanding of the offensive warrior souls. What readers should not expect from this guide is a step-by-step, foolproof strategy for becoming the leader of damage charts.
The discussion of various roles, souls and talents in this guide is intended to be as objective as possible, using generalizations about roles and their primary goal to illustrate which souls are better suited to a particular role. Furthermore this guide does not contend that the talent specializations contained within are the “best” of their kind. They are merely provided as a starting point so that players may learn how to craft their own talent specializations.
While souls which are classified as defensive may work well in some offensive roles (most notably Support and PVP), this guide focuses solely on the offensive souls.
The pure or PVE (Player Versus Environment) offensive warrior is a bomb – a vessel of furious energy and destruction, exploding upon and vanquishing enemies within a matter of seconds. Unlike the defensive warrior, who exchanges higher overall damage for moderate damage and increased defense, the offensive warrior sacrifices overall defense to perform a maximum amount of damage. There are three exceptions to this rule.
The first exception is a warrior in the offensive Support role. The Support role is a combination of two or more roles in their lesser forms. For example, a warrior in the Support role might take talents which allow him/her to cause damage in addition to taking talents which buff the entire party with increased attack power or reduced stuns. However, as a result of spreading talent points across multiple roles, the Support warrior has less damage and buff potential than a warrior which has specialized solely into one of these areas. This does not make the Support warrior any less valuable to a group. As the role suggests, he/she can “support” a group in areas which may be lacking, allowing the group to move past more challenging content.
The second exception to the rule is the PVP (Player Versus Player) role. Offensive PVP warriors typically aim to maximize damage output, defense, and crowd control. Much like the support role, PVP warriors tend to dabble in a little bit of a lot of things meaning that many abilities are less powerful than their pure specialization forms. However, an effective balance of damage, defense, and crowd control makes the warrior a force to be reckoned with in a PVP setting.
The third exception to the rule is Leveling. While not all warriors choose to level in a leveling-friendly specialization, many find that favoring survivability makes the process smoother and quicker.
Of the four offensive roles, PVE tends to be most common, although many players experience all of the roles at various times over the course of play.
The Right Soul for the Role:
The offensive souls available to the warrior calling are: Champion, Paragon, Riftblade, and Beastmaster. When considering an offensive specialization, it is best to ignore claims that one soul performs better than another in terms of damage potential (unless there is substantial evidence to support the claim). For every forum thread which proclaims Riftblade is overpowered and king of warrior damage, there is another thread in which players’ claim Beastmaster/Champion/Paragon is overpowered and king of warrior damage. At this time, not enough testing has been conducted to verify which souls/talents excel over others. Therefore, this guide recommends players specialize in the soul that best suits the type of role and play-style they’re seeking to fulfill.
Another factor many players might want to consider before selecting souls’ is which soul will be the primary or main soul. Choosing a main soul does not mean the warrior will not take on talents in other souls. Quite simply, this serves to narrow down what can be a very overwhelming number of talents and attacks and makes talent selection easier. For example, if the player decides Elemental Damage sounds more enticing than Physical Damage, he/she is likely going to favor attacks in Riftblade over attacks in other trees. This is important because it further narrows down which talents a player should choose in secondary and third souls to support the damage of the main soul. So, with the Riftblade player in mind, looking at the Champion tree there is the talent, Brutal Punishment, which buffs the Champion attack Inescapable Fury. While Inescapable Fury is not a bad attack, it is not as good as Riftblade attacks are because it does not benefit from Riftblade talents like Rift Fury (increases the damage of non-physical abilities). Inescapable Fury is a physical damage ability, ergo, it is not as beneficial to the Riftblade soul and placing talent points in Brutal Punishment is not good a choice.
Please note that while Beastmaster is not listed in the chart above as being PVE friendly, this does not mean the soul is not useful in a raiding environment. The same is true for Champion. While Champion is not listed as being Support friendly, this does not mean there aren’t talents in the tree which would prove useful to the Support role. Soul and role classifications were given based on the soul’s overall capability to perform as the primary soul of the role. So, yes, while there are a couple of Support talents in Champion which might make it useful as the secondary or third soul of the Support role, there are not enough to warrant it being classified as a primary Support soul. Soul and role classifications are explained in further detail below.