Cliffside Fractal

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Cliffside Fractal

Cliffside Fractal map.jpg
Map of Cliffside Fractal

Fractals of the Mists

Cliffside Fractal.jpg
Cliffside Fractal

The Cliffside Fractal is one of the Fractals of the Mists occurring at levels 7, 22, 33, 47, 59, 69, 82, and 94. It represents the early history of Tyria, near the beginning of history.[1]


  • Event boss (tango icon).png
    Free the captured colossus.
    • Fractal Difficulty Scale: x
    • Personal Fractal Level: x
    • Defeat the Archdiviner.
    • Archdiviner
      Event bar.jpg
      Event boss (tango icon).png
    • Use the cultist hammer to break the ankle seals.
    • Left Seal
      Event bar.jpg
      Event swords (tango icon).png
    • Right Seal
      Event bar.jpg
      Event swords (tango icon).png
    • Break the chest seal.
    • Chest Seal
      Event bar.jpg
      Event swords (tango icon).png
    • Break the arm seals.
    • Left Seal
      Event bar.jpg
      Event swords (tango icon).png
    • Right Seal
      Event bar.jpg
      Event swords (tango icon).png
    • Destroy the final seal.
    • Seal
      Event bar.jpg
      Event swords (tango icon).png
  • Event boss (tango icon).png
    Fractal stabilized. Depart when ready.



Marker with 1-19 stacks of corruption.
Marker with 20-29 stacks of corruption.
Marker with 30-40 stacks of corruption.
Cultist Hammer

This hammer is acquired very early. Its fourth skill is required for the fractal's puzzles. If the hammer wielder is downed from a fall, the hammer will spawn near them.

  • The three basic skills are a standard attack, a knockback with weaker damage, and an AoE shield which provides stability
  • The hammer will charge up and offer a fourth skill when an enemy is defeated near the hammer.
    • The wielder of the hammer needs to be within range and have tagged the mob; It is unnecessary to deliver the final blow.
    • The hammer loses charge whenever it is dropped
  • Initially, picking up the hammer will cause damage to the player (At higher levels, about ~5k health's worth instantly)
    • If a player picks up the hammer while s/he still has stacks of Hammer Corruption, s/he will take increased damage and gain multiple conditions.
  • It applies a condition called Hammer Corruption every second.
  • If the hammer is lost, players can interact with Displaced Agents to get the hammer back.
  • The player who wields the hammer receives a blinking hammer marker over its head. The color of the marker changes with the number of stacks of corruption.
Corruption (Condition)

The cultist hammer applies a condition called Corruption. Corruption stacks in duration and can only be removed by dropping the hammer. (One stack is applied and removed every one second.)

  • For every 10 stacks of corruption, the wielder is affected by 1 stack of vulnerability
  • When corruption reaches 20 stacks, the wielder is affected by 1 stack of weakness and the hammer marker turns orange.
  • When corruption reaches 30 stacks, the wielder is stunned and the hammer marker turns red.
    • This stun can be evaded prior to reaching 30 stacks with a Dodge
    • This stun can be mitigated via the Hammer 3 skill (Use it around 26 stacks of corruption)
    • This stun can be broken via stun breaker skills
  • When corruption reaches 40 stacks, the wielder is downed and drops the hammer


Defeat the Fanatic, Veteran Fanatic and the 2 Veteran Chanters, and grab the Cultist Hammer in the alter, near the Colossus feet. Climb the scaffolding, defeating or moving past the fanatics before reaching the knee seals.

Knee Seals[edit]

There are 4 enemies here. Extra enemies (a veteran and a normal) spawn after the original four are defeated.

  • If the party is very careful they can charge the hammer four times, twice for each seal, thus defeating this stage without spawning any extra enemies.
  • To charge the hammer, you must defeat an enemy with the Cultist Hammer.
  • Avoid using AOE attacks here, so you can charge the hammer four times using only the original mobs.

To progress, the party will pass three more traps on the ground -- the second is prior to the wood bridge, the third is prior to the start of the tunnel.

At the end of the tunnel there is more scaffolding. This scaffolding has gargoyles that push air out of their mouths. Use timing to run past the traps. In addition, the wind can be dodged, blocked with Aegis, or a player can use stability to run through them. If you fall off, you will be downed between the wooden bridge and the tunnel prior to this scaffolding. At the end of the scaffolding, there's a switch to deactivate the gargoyles. Climb the last scaffolding to reach the chest seal.

Chest Seal[edit]

There are AoE fires burning on the floor. The fires are both preceded and followed by a small fire (the size of the red circle will not change). The colossus will blow out one of the flames at a time. There will always be one safe spot and two burning ones. Keep moving onto the safe parts, charge the hammer, and destroy the seal.

Afterwards there are no enemies or traps for the scaffolding to the next level. It is advisable to wait for your party prior to walking up the last wooden ramp before the next seal as sometimes enemies will aggro those who move too close.

Arm Seals[edit]

On this level, the seals are separated by a hallway. The hammer needs to alternate between hitting each arm seal. When one seal is hit it becomes protected by a purple bubble and accordingly the other seal loses its purple bubble and can be hit with the charged hammer.

Foes respawn indefinitely until the seals are destroyed and apply heavy stacks of vulnerability.

Foes on each side will regenerate that seal's health. Keeping the foes aggro'ed on one side will minimize the healing done to that seal. The seals' repair rate is the same at all difficulty levels.

The scaffolding to the final seal is trapped with timed explosives that will knock you off. Wait for them to clear at each landing or follow behind the explosions as they go up the ramps. The shorter ramps with explosives can be dodged. Speed boosts or a well-timed Stability can be helpful. At the end of the scaffolding, there are 2 switches to deactivate the bombs.

Common Strategy[edit]

Out of date This article or section contains information about Guild Wars 2 which is known (or is likely) to be out of date.
Please read this information with caution and update it with current information if you can.

Details: "Each side starts with only one cultist now."

Since forced respawns now occur, the optimal strategy (especially at high levels) is to have the group camp one seal (south is easiest), and have a dedicated runner with stealth skills to hit the north seal. By using this method, the north seal will be recharged fully between runs, but the south seal can be broken with only three runs made to the north seal (four hits on the south seal). For this strategy, it is best for the dedicated runner not to break either of the first two seals to avoid hammer corruption and be able to make the first hit on the north seal immediately after the first hit on south. The runner may also be gated by cool downs on stealth skills between runs as well.

  • At the first (north) seal, defeat the veteran cultist. Hit the seal with the charged hammer.
  • The entire group heads to the second (south) seal. Defeat the veteran cultist and hit the seal with the charged hammer.
  • Pull the new spawns from south into the tunnel. Use this location to swap the hammer-bearer and charge the hammer.

Note: It is easiest to charge the hammer as a wave is almost eliminated, typically on the second to last cultist left alive so that only the veteran remains as the hammer is being run to the south seal.

  • The dedicated north runner then charges the hammer at south, and runs to the north seal, applying stealth before exiting the hallway. Hit the north seal with the charged hammer, and be sure a break stun and second stealth skill are available as higher fractal levels can stun the hammer-bearer, and a second stealth may be necessary to safely get back into the hallway. Run the hammer back to the south end and drop it.
  • When two cultists are left on south, a south person can pick up the hammer to charge it and hit the south seal, then return the hammer to the same location.
  • The dedicated runner should wait for hammer corruption to expire and stealth skills to recharge. At that point, they can pick up the hammer and repeat the charge and run to the north seal as per above. It is important that the south group continue to pull all cultists into the hallway so that the south seal cannot be recharged.
  • Alternate hits to the north and south seals per above. Ideally south will only require four hits and break if done properly.
  • Once broken, the entire group can then move north and break the north seal, which can be hit as soon as the hammer is charged.

Notes from earlier strategy which still apply:

  • Party members stacked in the hallway are responsible for continually pulling the cultists back into the hallway and killing them. This minimizes healing done to the south seal. The north seal will recharge doing this strategy, but hits on the north seal are required as a shield appears over the seal once hit. Once the south seal is broken, this shield no longer appears.
    • Mobs spawn separately from one another, so some will continue to respawn even as your party is fighting in the hallway.
  • Use the mobs pulled into the hallway from the second seal to continually charge the hammer and hit the appropriate seal. Realize that a stealth runner may need to wait for stealth skills to recharge and hammer corruption to wear off between runs.
  • Only the person with the charged hammer should leave the stack in the hallway.

Speed boosts, blinks, and portals can help reduce the travel time between arm seals.

Neck Seal[edit]

Legendary Archdiviner[edit]

The Legendary Archdiviner is the main boss of this fractal. He uses the Cultist Hammer. Prior to entering the final chamber there are chains on the wall. If you are locked out of the room, these chains can be activated to allow you inside.

  • Channel — Red AoEs on the floor. You have about a second or two to leave these circles before they apply 4 conditions to you. (May not require dodging, try running forwards in the direction closest to safety)
  • Conic hammer slam attack — It scales in speed at higher difficulties.
  • Defiance bar only active during the conic attack and Corrupted Ground area-of-effect attack.
  • Rush/Teleport Attack (scales 25–100)
  • Projectile-blocking Wall (scales 51–100) — that is active for the first 50% of health.
  • Backbreaker heavy attack (scales 51–100) — replaces the basic attack for the last 50% of health.

In between each phase there is a transition phase. They occur at 75%/50%/25%/0% accordingly. He will become invulnerable to damage and will drop the hammer. Also, the purple protection on the seal in the center of the room will be removed and four foes will spawn on the circle around the seal, giving you an opportunity to charge the hammer by killing one of them. In lower-level fractals, the mobs will despawn after you hit the seal, but will not in later levels, so it is advisable to clear them out first before using the charged hammer on the seal. After the seal has been hit by the hammer, the Legendary Archdiviner will stun the party for 1 second and take his hammer back as he did prior to the fight. If a player stands near the Legendary Archdiviner when the seal is hit and the party is stunned, he will also be stunned.

Phase 1

He starts with four cultists around him. The party can pull the cultists behind the brazier to the right of the Legendary Archdiviner and kill them before he is aggro'ed. In this phase he only uses a hard hitting melee attack and channels his AOE circles from the first fight that apply conditions after a couple seconds.

Phase 2 (75% health)

The same mechanics apply.

Phase 3 (50% health)

At 50% health, he gains a permanent Protection effect.

At levels 10 and higher, this attack applies agony. It can be evaded, blocked, or mitigated via skills. It can also be avoided at max-range. This attack can also be avoided using the walls of the four braziers via line of sight. At even higher levels it is often preceded with a pull, making it more difficult to avoid. As soon as he starts casting this ability he will start reflecting all projectiles, this persists for a short duration after the ability is cast too.

In addition, he will start locking people in cages. Prisoners can break out using melee attacks or by targeting the cage door. While inside the cages, players get torment.

He also spawns two ranged minions periodically. He will continue spawning two minions throughout the fight and so, if they are not killed consistently, it is possible for many minions to be active at the same time.

Phase 4 (25% health)

At 25% heath, he gains a permanent Swiftness effect. Same as phase 3 except he will stop channeling wells and gains the ability to send ranged projectiles at several party members simultaneously.

At scales 71-100, he will also transform in a demon avatar (alternate form of the Revenant's Embrace the Darkness (Legendary Demon Stance)).

Final Transition

Instead of simply stunning the group at the end of this transition, he will remain invulnerable. The hammer must be charged and the seal needs to be hit for the last time.

When the seal is finally broken (and the chest spawns), the Colossus will stand and, after a short time, bow with his hands together. If you /bow in return, you will receive the Take a Bow achievement.


Cliffside Fractal Stabilizer Fractals of the Mists (achievements).png Fractals of the Mists Arenanet Points.png
You've completed the Cliffside fractal inside the Fractals of the Mists.Off the chain. 1 Fractals Arenanet Points.png
Headhunter Fractals of the Mists (achievements).png Fractals of the Mists Arenanet Points.png
Defeat the Legendary Archdiviner at the top of the Cliffside fractal while only killing five cultists or chanters. This does not include the initial entourage. Must be completed on scale 21 or above. Defeated the Archdiviner While Only Killing Five Cultists Arenanet Points.png
Take a Bow Fractals of the Mists (achievements).png Fractals of the Mists Central Tyria mastery pointArenanet Points.png
You and the captured colossus of the Cliffside fractal share a moment of respect.Taller than your average friend. 1 Challenges Arenanet Points.png
  • Once the final seal has been broken there will be a cinematic in which the Colossus will break his chains and walk away from the cliff. Once he is on his way, he will turn around and bow to the players. To obtain the achievement, use the /bow emote to bow to the Colossus in return. The timing is quite lenient - if you start to bow as he is walking away then you may be too early but you can simply repeat the emote until the achievement is received.





Upon arrival
Dessa Observation Mode: Are you seeing this? Something that gargantuan must be chained there for a reason. I don't know about this.
While breaking the seals
Dessa Observation Mode: If those zealots are trying to kill you, perhaps this behemoth can't be all bad. Quick, locate a method to liberate him.
Upon reaching the arm seal
Dessa Observation Mode: Keep going. I'm theorizing there's a master control at the top. That should free this captured colossus.
After breaking final seal
Dessa Observation Mode: Fascinating. I wonder where he came from—and where he's going. So much data to analyze. As for you, tell me when you are ready to exit.






  1. ^ a b TowerTalk LoreSpecial: Closeup Flame&Frost and Fractals, TowerTalk
  2. ^ Reddit posts by Josh Davis and Ben Arnold