by Robert Gee on August 20, 2015
Salutations, Tyrians! Today we’ll be going over the berserker, a torch-wielding elite specialization for the warrior profession. Berserkers are warriors that have tapped into a primal bloodlust to unleash their rage in the form of powerful new burst skills.
After building enough adrenaline, the berserker can enter berserk mode. This mode dramatically changes the berserker’s adrenaline bar. The entire bar changes from a three-tiered bar consisting of 30 adrenaline into a single merged adrenaline bar consisting of only 10 adrenaline. With this new adrenaline bar, the berserker gains access to special “primal” burst skills. These special weapon burst skills have lower recharges than their nonberserk counterparts, allowing them to be used much more often in conjunction with the shortened adrenaline bar. Here are a few examples:
Scorched Earth (Longbow)
Instead of firing an arcing shot that leaves a large area of fire, this longbow burst attack leaves a trail of fire on the ground in a straight line. The area covered is much larger overall but must be aimed properly to gain the benefit.
Skull Grinder (Mace)
While Skull Crack is a simple attack focused on disabling foes, the primal version, Skull Grinder, is instead focused on applying conditions. While it still disrupts (for a shorter duration), it also inflicts multiple conditions on your target.
Primal bursts are all considered tier 3 bursts for traits that scale according to adrenaline level, however their damage level is slightly lower on average due to the additional effects they inflict and the frequency with which a berserker can use them.
The torch is the berserker’s weapon of choice, and it embodies the powerful flames of war. While the guardian uses magical flames for protection and purging, berserkers use the torch as a reckless weapon of destruction, slamming it into the ground and even lighting themselves ablaze to become mobile fire fields. Other professions use the torch as a utility off-hand weapon, but the berserker focuses on its offensive properties.
Slam your torch into the ground and create a cascade of rock and flame that travels toward your target, crippling and burning any foe in the way.
Flames of War
Light yourself ablaze, burning off conditions and creating a fire field around you that follows you and burns enemies caught inside it. When the field expires, it explodes, dealing damage and applying more burning to foes around you.
Blaze Breaker is a strong offensive skill that hits multiple times and can rapidly stack burning on groups of foes. Flames of War, on the other hand, is more of a tactical skill, allowing the berserker to activate many of the combo finishers available on other weapons. Both skills apply burning, making the torch a good weapon for condition-damage builds.
Feel the Rage
The berserker’s utility skills are a new type of skill known as rage skills. This skill type is similar to the warrior’s physical skill type in that they involve feats of strength but have the added bonus of granting bonus adrenaline when used. One of these skills is Wild Blow, a powerful attack that launches any foe it hits back a large distance with such force that your foe’s own body becomes a projectile that can hit other enemies, knocking them back in turn. Weaving rage abilities into your skill rotation can help you maintain a good burst cadence while berserking. Berserk itself is also a rage skill and will fill your adrenaline bar when used, so you can immediately activate a primal burst.
Surpass the Limit
Berserker traits fall into three categories, each augmenting a different aspect of the berserker. The first line is focused on brawling and provides benefits for being in berserk mode and tools for gathering up enemies to slaughter. The second line has augments for burning and condition damage, allowing you to set more foes on fire more often. The final line emphasizes the berserker’s unstoppable nature, adding healing options and stun breaks to help you survive when in the thick of battle.
We hope you enjoyed this preview of the berserker specialization, but if it wasn’t enough, you can watch Friday’s livestream at noon Pacific Time (UTC-7) on the official Guild Wars 2 Twitch channel for more details.