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Opening Summary[edit]


Traits are a passive tool for increasing character attributes or enabling other effects; they are always active. Along with profession, weapon and skill selections, the trait system allows players to customize their characters to suit individual styles of play. There are two types of traits — minor and major:
Minor traits are enabled automatically by spending 5, 15, or 25 points in a specific trait line.
You can choose among 12 major traits after unlocking a trait slot after spending 10, 20, or 30 points.

I think summaries are important and most need improvement. I don't think the point thresholds are appropriate for the summary. Perhaps:

The trait system provides continuous passive combat benefits to the player. Along with profession, weapon and skill selections, the trait system allows players to customize their characters to suit individual styles of play. Increasing assignment of trait points to a trait line increases the character's attributes associated with that line and unlocks that line's minor traits and selectable major traits, which provide increased effectiveness of skills and mechanics associated with those traits. llandale 00:32, 18 May 2012 (UTC)
That's better than what I wrote. Go for it. – Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 00:41, 18 May 2012 (UTC)
Are you fundamentally opposed to bullets in the summary? I think they're worth using in this case to clearly show the two major roles the trait system plays, and that they're connected but separate. (edit: by which I mean increasing attributes and passive effects -- not minor and major traits.) --Eerie Moss 06:33, 18 May 2012 (UTC)
I think that point is covered by "selectable major traits" in the proposed summary. I'm a big believer in bullets, but I think there's no need for them in the intro especially since the point is covered in detail in the body of the article.
Nevertheless, maybe you could draft an alternative? – Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 07:13, 18 May 2012 (UTC)
Well, here's what I wrote originally and I still think that's fairly concise. I'm not sure we need to go into the details of major and minor traits in the summary as this article (to me) is more about the trait system as a whole, but I have no strong preference. --Eerie Moss 07:50, 18 May 2012 (UTC)
I agree that bullets look rather ugly in summary/header section. It should contain a very clear explanation of what traits are and details such as level unlocks should come in following sections. Mediggo 07:58, 18 May 2012 (UTC)

Whopping Change[edit]

20May: Sorry, should have broken it up into pieces. Is use of "skills" correct, or is it "skills and ???"? Have we found all the benefits of the trait system (e.g. does it help craft?)? llandale 22:35, 20 May 2012 (UTC)

Do we have it right? If I spend 20 points on a line then I get the Adept's and Master's minor, and also get an Adept and Master major slots, into which I can put ANY such major trait? Is the major more effective if I put it into the Master's slot than the Adept's slot? Or do more major trait's themselves become available as I spend more points? Perhaps there are few Adept majors from which I chose 1, and a few Master's majors from which I choose 1? llandale 22:57, 20 May 2012 (UTC)

The information we have about the trait system as of now indicates that it will not have any "out of combat" benefits, such as modifying crafting. And no, the major traits are not affected by switch of the three major slots they are placed in. Aqua (T|C) 23:59, 20 May 2012 (UTC)
There are 12 Major traits per trait line. Their effects are fixed, and you can select any of them to place into the major trait slots at 10, 20, and 30 trait points. —Dr Ishmael User Dr ishmael Diablo the chicken.png 01:15, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
Just made a few changes, hope you don't mind:
  • removed emphasis, we haven't done that sort of thing anywhere else that I'm aware of
  • Swapped trait lines and traits back around. As it says in the summary, you spend points in trait lines to unlock traits so having lines first flows better.
  • modified some text to be a bit more concise.
--Eerie Moss 07:11, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
Aye, it looks much better now, with summarized header section, better organized info and all. Good job. :) Mediggo 07:42, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
Think you should keep both "trait lines" sections together, not leave "Traits" in between them.
  • So more points does not make traits more effective?
  • I intended the final sentance of the opening summary to be what characters do; not specifically what happens when they do it. Missing is "select major traits". The slot details are further down; I think that one sentance should be reverted.
  • can you spend un-allocated points in combat? If not, then "any time" should be adjusted.
  • I hear tell you can some trait points from certain books?
  • somewhere need something like "characters select any major trait for any available major trait slot".
  • "traits Improve skills and ..." should be in there somewhere.
  • Trait lines by profession seems too long. Don't need "specific attribute". Putting the "trait list" reference on the same line as the "trait lines" reference would make it better ..err.. shorter, as would turning it into a table.llandale 22:46, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
Trait lines -> Traits flows better as the traits section assumes knowledge given in the trait lines section. Admittedly trait lines by profession is very out of place at the moment but that isn't the solution.
Could you explain points affecting traits? If I understand you correctly, then no, traits are either on or off, they don't change effectiveness based on points in the line.
Regarding the summary, I'll defer to others because my preference for a summary would be to remove that sentence altogether as there's no context for it.
Trait points from books: Not to my knowledge. You start earning them at 11, stop at 80, and have 70 total when you're done. That doesn't leave room for books to grant additional points.
What traits do is covered by "Traits grant additional combat abilities or alter existing characteristics", although I admit that's a little overly general.
--Eerie Moss 06:08, 22 May 2012 (UTC)
Skill points can be earned by reading some books and they can easily be found looking for unobtained skill points map symbols. I think traits or trait points from books and trait points affecting traits themselves is some outdated information we had before major, up-to-date traits reveal. Mediggo 06:33, 22 May 2012 (UTC)
Yeah, I think that's probably old info now. I've made some additional changes. Hopefully that summary is okay. I mainly just wanted to avoid rehashing information unnecessarily. I've also tweaked the traits section. On the subject of the "trait lines by profession" section, I agree it's somewhat out of place there. Lists normally have their own articles, worth moving that bit away? --Eerie Moss 06:44, 22 May 2012 (UTC)
Yes, Trait Points ->Trait Lines ->Traits is best. But right now "Trait Lines" is split up and far to long (visually), effectively hiding the Traits.
A summary of "what do I do? what is the general effect?" gives lots of info. Folks can then bypass the rest of the article and still have a fair notion of what traits are about. The rest of the article then makes sense. Otherwise, you read and re-read to try to figure out what's going on. Yes, the sentance is "out of place" but it would be better to add a couple words to get its place then to remove the whole sentance. llandale 01:13, 25 May 2012 (UTC)

Don't like multiple verbs for the same thing: "Lower": [Refund|Reset|De-Allocate]; "Increase": [Allocate|Spend]; "Change":[Allocate|Adjust]. Anyone recall the verbs used in-game? Today I'm inclined: "Adjust" on the hero panel, "Spend" on a trait line, and "Refund" for use on other lines. llandale 00:26, 25 May 2012 (UTC)

Was thinking to consolodate the "trait lines by profession" and came up with my first miserable attempt at a table; even it someone pretty's it up I wonder if its useful.

Category Profession Trait Lines: Specific Attr Traits
Soldiers Guardian Zeal Radiance Valor Honor Virtues Willpower list of guardian traits
Warrior Strength Arms Defense Tactics Discipline Brawn list of warrior traits
Adventurers Engineer Explosives Firearms Inventions Alchemy Tools Ingenuity list of engineer traits
Ranger Marksmanship Skirmishing Wilderness Survival Nature Magic Beastmastery Empathy list of ranger traits
Thief Deadly Arts Critical Strikes Shadow Arts Acrobatics Trickery Cunning list of thief traits
Scholars Elementalist Fire Magic Air Magic Earth Magic Water Magic Arcana Intelligence list of elementalist traits
Mesmer Domination Dueling Chaos Inspiration Illusions Guile list of mesmer traits
Necromancer Spite Curses Death Magic Blood Magic Soul Reaping Hunger list of necromancer traits

Was figuring to reduce the space for the Trait Lines table; but nothing seems to work well. llandale 00:52, 25 May 2012 (UTC)

Not sure what the in-game terminology is for setting traits, but good point, we should have a look next beta. I'm pretty sure resetting them was called refunding though. There is a case for using different verbs based on the subject of the sentence though. We spend points to increase attributes.
The table doesn't work for me at all. I think it works best as a list, but not in the middle of a main article. --Eerie Moss 06:01, 25 May 2012 (UTC)
Trait points are spent on trait lines which increase attributes. If it's tables you want, you could try {{Template:Trait lists nav}}. Mediggo 06:19, 25 May 2012 (UTC)
When information can or is different based on the information's 2 [characteristics?|categories?] it is without a doubt best presented as a table. A "list" is when the information has just one category; such as "Days of the Week". A reasonably sized table allows the reader to:
  1. quickly see where the information starts and stops.
    • can see which information is within scope (info in the table vrs info following it)
    • can quickly bypass the info and move on to the next topic.
  2. quickly see the category of the information, based on its column or row titles. A "list" needs to repeat the topic categories obscuring the info itself.
  3. quickly see the combination of the rows (by reading the columns) and see the combination of the columns (by reading the row). A "list" forces you to choose which type of combination you want, sacrificing the other.
  4. can far more easily see how neighboring info is identical or slightly or largely different.
I add:
  • My "visual" arguments above can be experienced by translating it into the Sylvian language (which nobody else can read); the "list" turns into a blur.
  • I argue that putting related information in a table has similar merit to putting related sentances into paragraphs.
  • I agree the nature of THIS information negates much of the above (e.g. we don't need to compare a Ranger's 2nd trait line with the Thief's) but it's still easier to read than the existing hopelessly long list.
  • I've struggled with similar lists on the old wiki, gritting my teeth.
  • Yes, THIS table is weak right now (my first try) but others can certainly improve its appeal. llandale 13:32, 26 May 2012 (UTC)
I would argue that trait lines are more similar to your days of the week example. Tactics, for instance, has nothing in common with Alchemy, so there's no reason they should be in the same column. It would be more logical to list them underneath each other (example below) but that again makes it a bit big and unwieldy.
Category Profession Trait Lines Specific Attribute Traits
Soldiers Guardian Zeal
Willpower List of guardian traits
Warrior Strength
Brawn List of warrior traits
I proposed this a while ago on the attribute page but didn't get any takers.--Eerie Moss 14:00, 26 May 2012 (UTC)
What about listing the attributes that they affect?
Guardian icon small.pngGuardian (trait list)
Trait Primary attribute Secondary attribute Profession attribute
Honor Vitality.png Vitality Healing Power.png Healing Power
Radiance Precision.png Precision Condition Damage.png Condition Damage
Valor Toughness.png Toughness Critical Damage.png Critical Damage
Virtues Boon Duration.png Concentration Guardian icon small.pngWillpower
Zeal Power.png Power Condition Duration.png Expertise
Warrior icon small.pngWarrior (trait list)
Trait Primary attribute Secondary attribute Profession attribute
Arms Precision.png Precision Condition Damage.png Condition Damage
Defense Toughness.png Toughness Healing Power.png Healing Power
Discipline Critical Damage.png Critical Damage Warrior icon small.pngBrawn
Strength Power.png Power Condition Duration.png Expertise
Tactics Vitality.png Vitality Boon Duration.png Concentration
That's actually providing more information that a simple list, and it's the info I'm most interested in when I'm looking at traits. Make them float, like I did, and they fill up the horizontal space on the page. —Dr Ishmael User Dr ishmael Diablo the chicken.png 14:56, 26 May 2012 (UTC)
Warrior icon small.png Warrior (trait list)
Trait Primary attribute Secondary attribute Profession attribute
Arms Precision.png Precision Condition Damage.png Condition Damage
Defense Toughness.png Toughness Healing Power.png Healing Power
Discipline Critical Damage.png Critical Damage Warrior icon small.png Brawn
Strength Power.png Power Condition Duration.png Expertise
Tactics Vitality.png Vitality Boon Duration.png Concentration
My suggestion to remove the unsightly STDT. Aqua (talk) 15:01, 26 May 2012 (UTC)
I like those. Fully support. --Eerie Moss 15:04, 26 May 2012 (UTC)
Style's not my forte, so sure, that looks good. —Dr Ishmael User Dr ishmael Diablo the chicken.png 16:10, 26 May 2012 (UTC)
Like those tables, although I think each belongs on the respective professsion's trait page. Perhaps add a description column including "Valor is a trait line for the guardian that focuses on improving blocking and meditations." llandale 02:16, 29 May 2012 (UTC)

Supporting the Topic[edit]

I think we need to consider each individual piece of information and ask "How does this help someone understand the topic of the page?" If you ask that of the existing lists of Primary and Secondary attributes on this page, you discover they do not help someone understand "Traits". If you can say "It supports the previous paragraph" which in turn supports the section, which in turn supports the topic, then it qualifies.

The content of this page should be to let folks understand "Traits". Specific information about specific traits is 2ndary information, and doesn't make sense until this page clarifies the concept. I know 3 weeks ago when I started reading this I was hopelessly lost, and in fact didn't get it until I ran into relevant info elsewhere.

"Increase attributes and enhances some skill and other effects" (or some such) information is crutial. llandale 02:22, 29 May 2012 (UTC)

I agree. I think that you've got changes in mind, be bold and make them. It is easier to see what you're talking about when you've changed the article and others can help out with fixes and comment more directly on issues. -- aspectacle User Aspectacle.png 03:48, 29 May 2012 (UTC)
The trait system provides the means to further customize a character to suit individual styles of play. Exchange "trait system" with either "skill system" or "weapon sigils" and we see it says practically nothing about traits. "Customize" is the only useful word. That may be a fair 3rd sentence for a "Character Customization" page.
The customizable trait system provides passive combat benefits to the character. Allocating trait points to a particular trait line increases that line's attributes and allows more traits to be activated which enhance various effects. We see why we are interested, that we "allocate" and "activate" something and it then works on its own, and it introduces the page's topics in context. We can read that and move onto the next page or dive into this one. I don't like all the passive voice but that seems to be a minority opinion, oh well.llandale 20:24, 29 May 2012 (UTC)
We've never really discussed which voice we want to use. I tend to write in passive, not quite sure why, I guess it is the impartial third party authority voice typically used by wikipedia.
I'd increase the density of the information in the first paragraph even more. I also like to have the word for the topic right up there at the beginning. So;
"Traits are used to customise the way a profession plays by allowing the player a choice of passive combat benefits for their character. A player invests trait points which increase a pair of attributes in a trait line and once sufficient points are spent major and minor traits become available which are used to provide and enhance various skill and combat effects."
What do you think? -- aspectacle User Aspectacle.png 21:24, 29 May 2012 (UTC)
Passive voice is also used quite often in scientific writing. In highschool english, students are encouraged to avoid passive voice because it makes essays, and reports on subjective topics weaker... in essence when it's opinions, editorials, communications, stories, active voice is better. But for fact driven type of writing for things on the wiki and scientific articles, passive voice is used a lot... so it's better to stay in passive voice. :) So, i kinda prefer aspectable's wording. --Lania User Lania Elderfire pinkribbon.jpg21:43, 29 May 2012 (UTC)
My astro-physicist cousin certainly disagrees that passive is best for scientific: I recall I was screamed at ..err.. she screamed at me over this very topic. Passive can avoid blame: "The ball was lost but Jamie found it" politely ignores who lost it and praises who found it. You should routinely use active when knowing the active subject is important but obscured by the passive: The inspector does not want to hear "John was shot" when we know which of his 5 girl-friends in the room did it. Is thought by me most important, though, that passive lets you put the topic as the subject of the sentence: I suggest that "Traits are adjusted" is more acceptable in a "Trait" article and less so in a "Customizing" article. llandale 00:35, 30 May 2012 (UTC)
I think: "choice" means one; change to "choices" or "selection of"; (but those benefits are not directly "chosen"). "in a line" must follow "invest points". "Are used" is incorrect, one cannot "use" a trait. "Sufficient" suggests "one", change to "thresholds". Last phrase; perhaps too much of a nit-pick but traits do not provide skills. I like "invest" a lot. Having trouble fitting in "customize". Overall "prefer passive" should not mean "commitment to passive". Perhaps this is one step "better": The Trait System is used to provide the player choices of passive combat benefits for their character. A player invests trait points in trait lines to increase the pair of attributes of that line, and to meet point thresholds to make more major and minor traits become available, which enhance various skill and combat effects. llandale 02:25, 30 May 2012 (UTC)
While not mandatory, it sure seems to me it will be customary and correct for folks to "customize" their character with skills and weapons which defines their game-style, and THEN enhance those choices and style with traits. (Is that where "further" came from?...) You choose a greatsword trait because you wield a greatsword; it would be silly to first choose a greatsword trait and THEN think about your weapon set. Perhaps then: The trait system provides passive combat benefits that can be use to complement their character's skill and weapon customizations. Investing trait points in a particular trait line increases that line's pair of attributes, and activates more individual traits enhancing various combat effects. llandale 02:37, 30 May 2012 (UTC)
Fair points. Perhaps this;
The trait system provides passive combat bonuses which further customise and complement a character's(player's?) weapon and skill selection. Each profession has five unique trait lines which pair attributes together and provide unique traits. Investing trait points in a particular trait line increases that line's attributes and unlocks fixed and flexible traits that modify and enhance combat when slotted.
hm. Not sure about that last bit - trying to better explain a trait at the same time I'm using the term to speak about the system. Bleh - Imma gonna do something else for a while. -- aspectacle User Aspectacle.png 03:51, 30 May 2012 (UTC)
I think traits customize the character, but customize skills perhaps has merit? You say "Further customize .. skills" which is wrong on two levels. If used, "further" would have this meaning: Customize with skills, then further customize with traits. Further implies an ordering (skills->traits) and we don't need the word if we imply the ordering elsewhere. Then comes the notion of what "should" the opening sentances of a topic do. Certainly show how the topic relates to the game (passively enhances skills..). I think also how players/characters interact with the topic (invest, select or customize). I think also how the topic's sub-topics (trait lines) interact with the topic. Nuances of Major/Minor don't really help, and in this case are impossible to describe in less than one full dedicated sentance. (Many folks here including myself have failed to insert major/minor into another sentance). I think "get more traits with more investment" covers the basics nicely. An Intro to "Automobile" would suggest the driver can control speeding up and slowing down and vehicle direction, but need not mention steering wheel nor brakes; and certainly not mention pressure on a hydrolic line. I would like to point out that I was hopelessly lost on the notion of "traits", and that's why I'm at it here; I spent a fair amount of time reading lots of other pages just to understand this one. Anyway, getting late. llandale 04:19, 31 May 2012 (UTC)
I realize the above May, 2012 discussion resolved itself, but the nearness of release should turn an aweful lot of attention back to these pages explaining the basics. GW2 does a good job in-game of helping players learn through practice. I first came to this page looking to find exactly what was here - quick links to character specific traits, all organized to be easily found. Getting rid of that would be unacceptable. It is fine to give the general explanation. That is not all this page should offer. The best format for this page would be a brief explanation of traits followed by class specific lists of links. The Main Page leads to this page. It is expected that this page should be a general guide to more specific pages. KoCaocao 16:04, 18 August 2012 (UTC)

'Customize', 'play style', 'Unlocks'[edit]

It would be hard to talk about 'Customize' or 'play style' unless they are defined and used elsewhere. Also, while Skill selection has a big effect on play style, Traits do not; and its certainly not true that each trait adjusts (or adds to) a style. Noting that traits are part of a character's "build" sounds execellent, so long as we have a build page. I'd rather that than the nebulous "customize" which can include the color of one's ear rings. "Unlock" has a different meaning in GW1 and I'd be reluctant to use it here even if its mentioned in-game; unless we specifically define "unlock". Here it means "allows more to be selected" as in "increases the number of open trait slots". Now that I see 'build' referenced, seems to me there should be a "Build" page and that this page, skills, weapons et pages should say something like " part of the character's build"; making "Customize" OBE. llandale 04:36, 2 June 2012 (UTC)

build and play style were both used by John Peters in his blog post on traits when he was explaining the purpose of the trait system. The terms I was using, like bonus rather than benefit, award rather than unlock are borrowed from that post too. A build page can be created if something needs to be explained.-- aspectacle User Aspectacle.png 05:47, 2 June 2012 (UTC)
How about this?
The trait system provides the means to increase a character's attributes (by investing trait points in trait lines) and enable a wide variety of additional combat effects (through unlocking and selecting traits).
Along with profession, weapon and skill selections, the trait system allows players to further customize their characters to suit their style of play, or to create specialist builds.
It's pretty much what I wrote originally, with just a bit more detail added, and I think it's pretty clear. A new user coming to this page and reading that should instantly be able to figure out what traits do, and how.
@aspectacle, I originally suggested splitting them but I'm pretty divided on it. I think the two concepts are a bit too intertwined. --Eerie Moss 06:30, 2 June 2012 (UTC)
Your 2nd sentance provides no additional useful information. If you think it a no brainer that increasing attributes and providing additional combat effects to be "customizing", adjusting "style", or creating "builds", then you don't need to say it at all. llandale 15:51, 2 June 2012 (UTC)
Traits have massive effect on gameplay. It is for many something of an equivalent to MMO talents. It's ok to use terms which make sense to general public, even if they are not present in-game. Trait system itself may be rather passive, but traits themselves are in no way so: For instance, many provide an effect on dodging, which is active, or when using a specific skill. Attributes are passive, but the effects of individual traits are not universally so. Right now, the summary is rather nondescriptive, especially to anyone unfamiliar with the subject - I suggest removing mention of weapons and skills altogether, since selecting traits is in no way related to them, as they can only optionally compliment use of certain weapons and skills. The primary use of traits is to increase attribute points and gain various combat improvements, both active and passive. Mediggo 11:21, 2 June 2012 (UTC)
Passive means that the player doesn't need to separately activate the trait to get its effect during combat. Those traits which activate in combat only activate if you dodge, use a skill, or do something else in combat which makes them passive. Traits are related to skills in that if you had no (for example) symbols in your guardian's skill bar you'd be stupid to equip a trait which improved them.-- aspectacle User Aspectacle.png 15:11, 2 June 2012 (UTC)
Exactly. Dodging is an active non-trait thing; improved dodge ability is a passive trait thing. Putting on my eye-glasses actively improves my reading, but getting the correct prescription on them provides passive improved reading ... once I actively put them on. I see no active ..err.. activated traits, but even if there is one or two I think we can still summarize them "all" as "passive". llandale 15:51, 2 June 2012 (UTC)
I think part of the problem here is that the system is named like it's evolved from something. Trait lines is a terrible name because I think it is absolute heart of the system and it sounds secondary. If 'trait line' was 'speciality' (as an example) and the interface was named specialities:
  1. a speciality is a way for a profession to improve two attributes above normal levels. When a character becomes sufficiently specialised traits are awarded.
  2. a trait passively improves a skill, skill type, combat maneuver or similar.
Maybe we could convince them to rename. :P -- aspectacle User Aspectacle.png 15:11, 2 June 2012 (UTC)
I argue that game play is "what the character does", basically which skills are used how often and in what order. Traits indeed have a massive effect on the results of the play, but they have a minimum effect on how you play. If you equip 3 boons, buffing them with traits will cause you to use them only slightly more often. Buying a car to commute drastically affects your daily routine, getting a more powerful engine in that car will not cause you to commute much more often, nor cause you to use the bus much less often. If you would use them more often, then you should reconsider equiping them (unbuffed) in the first place. Thus I argue its skill and weopon selection that has a huge effect on your game play; armor and traits much less so. Some will rightly argue "Sometimes I wouldn't choose that boon unless I also buff it", but in that case "sometimes" buffing has an equal effect on game play as does selecting it, "usually" it does not. In any case, such a game play comment, I don't think, belongs in the opening summary unless it also belongs in other sorts of summaries. llandale 15:51, 2 June 2012 (UTC)
Comparing a computer game to real life examples is terrible, but I see your point. I'd rather not see traits being classified as neither active or passive, it just adds another layer of confusion to the summary. I agree with Aspectable on that trait lines could be replaced with a term that would make more sense, but I think that it also perfectly describes what system we're talking about – traits, in this case. This revision of the article (picked somewhat randomly) still has one of the most clear explanations to the system, mentioning its primary purposes (increasing attributes) alongside other effects granted and that is used as an additional level of character customization. Specifics like investing trait points and that two attributes are increased per trait line can be left for following sections. The goal of summary is be so clear that anyone without particular knowledge or experience on the whole matter can understand what subject this article is documenting. Anyone who plays video games or computer games in general should have some kind of understanding what gameplay or character customization means in game terminology. There's no need to explain them in detail and there's no reason to not use them when attempting to explain what the "trait system" does. Mediggo 19:50, 2 June 2012 (UTC)
I've got no huge problem with the summary you picked out Mediggo (I've had no huge problem with many of the recent revisions because I like my summaries with more mechanics), though I find "additional effects" vague to the point of uselessness. :) It covers what it does and it provides context to the rest of the game which is what I expect from a summary.
I'm going to make a request for a name change next weekend. :D -- aspectacle User Aspectacle.png 20:47, 2 June 2012 (UTC)
Not sure an article by a designer is "compelling" for describing things here that way; but certainly it's worth considering. I am sure that in-game descriptions or titles ARE "compelling" here; if it's a "Trait line" on the Traits screen then it's "Trait line" here. ... "Specialty" has some merit, but that word can be used for far too many things such "armorer specialist". Do you intend "specialty" to be the main topic (e.g. "Combat Specialty") or a replacement for the sub-topic trait line (e.g. "Trait Specialties")? I wonder "Trait Disciplines"? ... The problem here is we have no top-level name: "Trait System" is weak; I think perhaps the title of the page should be "Traits" or better yet "Character Traits", composed of Trait points, Trait lines, and individual Traits. ... As for the "clear" link by Mediggo; it seems "clear" to me that the 2nd sentance offers no info not covered in the 1st sentance. If it's not clear that increasing attrs and effects is customizing, then this suggests that you can increase attrs and effects, AND further customize. (btw I see now where "further" comes from). That 2nd sentance also says you can "customize to suit style", which suggests you can customize for other reasons but not with traits. That 2nd sentance rightfully belongs on some sort of "Customize" or "Build" or "Combat Style" page. Finally it does not differenciate Traits from Skills and Weapons. At the very least it should be the 1st sentance. I do agree now though that "Attributes" is important enough to be mentioned in the summary. ... Yes, we should not suggest the game "should" be a certain way because life "is" that way, but I see no problem with explaining a game concept with a life analogy. ... I see the argument that "passive" and "active" may be too much detail; but that one word "passive" gives a huge amount of information: you set up your traits and they work for you without interaction nor monitoring on your part. Compare that to inserting "major" and "minor" which gives no info without further explanation; in fact I think obscures other information. llandale 23:33, 2 June 2012 (UTC)
I agree about the second line probably being better off on a page called "build", so how about we create a new subheading on character for that purpose? Also, I know some people are opposed to bullets in summaries, and it doesn't exactly sit well with me either, but since this article is effectively about two things, isn't it worth considering what the summary would be on each page if they were separated, and seeing what they look like in bullet form? Example:
The trait system is an important part of a character's build and consists of two parts:
  • Spending points in trait lines increase the attributes associated with that line.
  • Unlocking or selecting traits changes a character's abilities in combat.
--Eerie Moss 05:15, 3 June 2012 (UTC)
I think it was agreed or at least discussed someplace that bullets shouldn't be used in text summary. Either way, I don't think it's a good idea to explicitly "split" traits' purpose into two "parts." Mentioning a build there might still be good since people will probably use it a lot in game and discussions anyways. Mediggo 11:53, 3 June 2012 (UTC)
Reset. Summary 1st line currently: "The trait system provides passive combat benefits which complement skill and weapon selection and are used to create a custom build or play style for a character.". Reference to 'play style' doesn't set right unless there's (will be) a page for it. Nit-picking: I wonder about moving "passive combat benefits" to the last phrase of the sentance ... "selection, together are used" ... I think Traits complement Skills whereas the passive effects compliment skill effects. I wonder about moving "passive" into the 2nd sentance. llandale 21:58, 3 June 2012 (UTC)
I made a bit of a bold edit there to the summary – removed all other "customization-related" terms like playstyle, etc., leaving just "enhance skills and actions" in place, which should be understandable to just about anyone, according to llandale's suggestion(?). I also incorporated altered version of Eerie's bullet notes, but removed any mention of "trait system" since the menu/navigation in game is simply "Traits" if I recall correctly. My only question is if "character" should be presented in singular or plural form here (and possibly any other articles, something I've been wondering for some time now). Mediggo 07:21, 4 June 2012 (UTC)
You pretty much nailed it, Mediggo. That order for describing the trait system removes the problem I had with the trait line having behaviour over and above the trait behaviour. "Other actions" is vague, enumerating a few more examples would enhance understanding of what a trait is rather than hindering it.
I still think that the intended purpose of the system is context which is interesting and not easily included in the rest of the article and provides a harmless second paragraph in the section before the toc. In many articles I've been using 'pre-toc' as a place to better integrate the 'notes' section, and I don't want to see a consensus develop which supports a huge notes section where an expanded summary makes for more interesting and perhaps more complete documentation of the topic at hand. -- aspectacle User Aspectacle.png 15:53, 4 June 2012 (UTC)
Well, at least we are setting the culture of doing a bang up job on the summary, or pre-TOC whatever. ... like "traits" over "trait system", but "traits" would mean both plural "more than one trait" and singular "the entire notion" ... I'm having a very hard time imagining a statement that folks would debate belonging here or in the notes; notes are for obscure facts; summary for folks who may not want to read any more. ... llandale 01:48, 7 June 2012 (UTC)
Just wondering, do the traits or the increased attributes have the better effect, or are they about the same? This wording suggests attribute increase doesn't matter much; I have no idea. 'Enhance' does a good job replacing 'passive'. ... Traits are not 'used'. Traits improve a character's combat abilities by enhancing skills and effects. Traits become available by investing trait points in trait lines, which also increase the attributes associated with each line. ?? llandale 01:48, 7 June 2012 (UTC)
Should we not change the name of the page to "Traits"? llandale 01:48, 7 June 2012 (UTC)
I think unlocking of traits is slightly more important than attributes since attributes can be increased by other means like gear and, to a lesser extent, by some boons (Fury simulates precision, Might increases attack, etc.). Many traits produce very unique effects which can be impossible to imitate. I like your version of the summary, so it could replace what I edited, with the exception of "effects". I think that all player-controlled movement and *cough* actions can be considered as "actions", and it should be pretty clear without having to explain it. The many effects of traits are also so varied that I can't think of anything more comprehensive than "actions" (or "skills and actions" since skills are major part of gameplay). "Effects" can also give the impression of being related to another documented subject, while traits affect more than just those status-effects, like dodging or movement in general, among other things. Finally, about renaming: I think it's commonplace practice to not use plurals for article/page names, so we should not make that exception here right now. A better option would be moving to "trait system" or something like that, but I think "Trait" will do just fine for now - everyone will understand what the article is about, especially after reading that summary section. Mediggo 09:59, 8 June 2012 (UTC)

Adept/Master/Grandmaster Major Traits[edit]

So, from my playing experience this weekend, I noticed that major traits 1-6 are available in all three slots, 7-10 become available at the master slot, and 11-12 are only available in the grandmaster slot. Should we add this to the infobox/pages? Aqua (talk) 13:59, 11 June 2012 (UTC)

I think the tiers are already mentioned in trait infoboxes, so that should probably be enough. Only need to edit this article to reflect changes made to the system and tiers, as well as trait line tables. Mediggo 14:12, 11 June 2012 (UTC)
I've updated {{Trait infobox}} so that we now specify both tier (adept/master/grandmaster) and type (minor/major) for every trait, and I'm in the process of updating all trait pages with this (as well as updating descriptions etc.). {{Trait table}} needs to be updated, but that is a massive jumble of DPL that I don't want to mess with. —Dr Ishmael User Dr ishmael Diablo the chicken.png 14:42, 11 June 2012 (UTC)
Changed the trait table to show tiers at least for the minors properly again. DPL looks like someone rolled their face over a keyboard to me, won't touch the rest of it. --zeeZUser ZeeZ Sig.png (talk) 14:52, 11 June 2012 (UTC)


Love those tables. FAR easier to read than the long lists. llandale 01:38, 12 June 2012 (UTC)

Trait table re-do[edit]

the 12 traits per trait line all have a numerical number. can we reorder the traits in accordance with the numerical number instead of alphabetically? This will help users quickly see which traits are unlocked at tier 1,2, and 3. We could even color code them if needed. traits 1-6 are tier 1, traits 7-10 are tier 2, and traits 11 and 12 are tier 3. --Moto Saxon 16:29, 12 June 2012 (UTC)

The table will (hopefully soon) be updated to display both type and tier for all traits - the traits themselves have already been updated with this info. —Dr Ishmael User Dr ishmael Diablo the chicken.png 17:06, 12 June 2012 (UTC)
Do we care what order they are in within the tiers or just the tiers? --JonTheMon 17:19, 12 June 2012 (UTC)
For now, I think it's okay to assume that the numeral icons are simply placeholders, so the ordering within a tier isn't significant. —Dr Ishmael User Dr ishmael Diablo the chicken.png 17:41, 12 June 2012 (UTC)
Agreed, tier level is the important part. the order within the tier shouldn't really matter. --Moto Saxon 20:36, 12 June 2012 (UTC)
If it doesn't matter within a tier, let's default to alpha-order. – Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 17:22, 14 June 2012 (UTC)

As an alternate display of the table data, I would love to see them laid out more like our in-game traits screen. That is, the tiers are horizontal as columns and the traits are vertical in rows. I struggle bending all the lists of traits into a pathway for my character. I even made my own excel spreadsheet to better help me see my options. Perhaps it can be on a second page so that using ctrl+f (find a word) would be easy to find synergies? At the very least display the traits in a similar way to the game. 09:14, 8 October 2012 (UTC)

Game-ike presentation of traits cannot be very easily replicated here because in game the trait lines are laid out horizontally whereas the trait tiers make up the vertical colums. Throwing all the traits into a single cell would probably make the presentation too condensed. BTW, I reset the indent of your comment because the previous chain of comments is quite old already and yours is a new suggestion. :) Mediggo 09:29, 8 October 2012 (UTC)

Effect listing of traits causing skills[edit]

Arcane Power is listed under Skills Increasing Critical Hit Chance, but Arcane Retribution is not listed under Traits Increasing Critical Hit Chance. Granted, Arcane Retribution does not directly increase the crit chance, but for someone looking for traits which increase crit chance it's still a relevant trait. Should we list traits of this type (traits which cause skills which cause effects) under the effect or is it redundant given that the skill caused by the trait is already listed? Chad 10:22, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

The Changing Of Major Trait Choices[edit]

There's no mention in the article when or how choices of major traits can be changed. Is it at any time while out of combat? Does the player have to visit an NPC? I have no idea. -Cirian 22:42, 11 August 2012 (UTC)

You're right, that is missing. Major traits are like skills, you can re-slot them at any time out-of-combat. To reallocate trait points, you have to visit a re-trainer NPC (unless you're in sPvP, where you get a "Refund" button at the top of the window). —Dr Ishmael User Dr ishmael Diablo the chicken.png 22:57, 11 August 2012 (UTC)

Wish they had stayed with original idea[edit]

I wish they had stuck with the original idea, that you each profession unlocked traits differently and out in the world, like warrior would have fought various swordmasters. Just going into a traits screen and spending points is no fun. Same with elite skills. Ramei Arashi 06:49, 17 August 2012 (UTC)

Resetting trait points[edit]

As for now resetting trait points by Training Manual don't work. One can only do this by talking to a trainer. I don't know if its not implemented yet, or it is a bug, or Training Manual's description is wrong. I don't have answer from support yet.

Koszmarek 09:00, 3 September 2012 (UTC)

I also was unable to consume adept trait manual, back in BWE. Mediggo 09:11, 3 September 2012 (UTC)
My traits were reset when I used a Master Training Manual yesterday. You can only use each manual once. —Dr Ishmael User Dr ishmael Diablo the chicken.png 14:10, 3 September 2012 (UTC)
Than description of Adept's training manual is wrong becouse it don't reset trait points of lower level - there isn't any lower level. There is another thing missing in decription of manuals - that you can use it only once. Koszmarek 15:58, 4 September 2012 (UTC)

The mention of it costing 71cp per point seems incorrect, or in the very least scaled to an end-game (Lv80) character. Resetting at Lv24 cost just over 70cp, or roughly 5cp per point. Can we get a confirmation on this, or data on a possible curve?

Agreed. I reset traits on my level 18 necromancer, and it didn't cost more than 40 bronze coins. Seems like it's 5 bronze per point. But wouldn't mind additional confirmation, since I'm quoting cost from memory. Nkuvu 18:14, 4 September 2012 (UTC)
It costs Silver coin 50 Copper coin at level 80. Manifold User Manifold Neptune.jpg 16:11, 8 October 2012 (UTC)

More information in trait descriptions[edit]

As above. Anet, you really need to add real information into traits so we can see WHAT THEY ACTUALLY DO, like how much damage they do, or how much stats the buffs like might are adding. GW1 barely any information was hidden from the player, GW2 is a god damn guessing game. Get on the ball, its ridiculously frustrating and dare I say lazy. 05:08, 29 December 2012 (UTC)

This isn't a forum and ArenaNet is not going to read suggestions here. You can use the Suggestions forum, where they are much more likely to respond.--Relyk Christmas sig.jpg talk 06:32, 29 December 2012 (UTC)


so because of the feature patch we need someone with a new character to find out where the locations to all the traits are and then add said locations to the pages.-User Zesbeer sig.png Zesbeer 01:32, 19 April 2014 (UTC)

Looks like it's already documented at Trait guide. --JonTheMon (talk) 01:49, 19 April 2014 (UTC)
its kind of convoluted to go to that page if you dont know where that page is or to visit this page I suggest that we add the info to all the trait pages so a new user could find it all in one place instead of having to look all over the place or at least have a link that links to the trait guide on all of the trait pages and maybe rename the page 'trait locations'-User Zesbeer sig.png Zesbeer 22:56, 24 April 2014 (UTC)
I'm with Zesbeer. I'd like to see the articles for each trait mention of the two unlock methods: purchase (with the gold/SP costs) and FedEx/UPS version (go to X and do Y, with a link to the relevant wiki article + nearest WP/POI point of reference). Maybe it could be part of the same lookup table that populates the infobox and skillfacts. – Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 08:22, 25 April 2014 (UTC)
@TEF: Re: your edits, the page did mention unlocking, in the description for Major traits. Minor traits don't have to be unlocked, so your addition is slightly incorrect because it makes no distinction between the two. —Dr Ishmael User Dr ishmael Diablo the chicken.png 12:23, 25 April 2014 (UTC)

tag for unfinished page[edit]

With the rollout for the new traits, this page is now incomplete/wrong. Needs the tag for incomplete pages. OkkeB (talk) 20:53, 23 June 2015 (UTC)

changed 5 seconds after posting this xD, well done OkkeB (talk) 20:53, 23 June 2015 (UTC)
There's going to be LOTS of stuff like this for a few days. Please be patient. —Dr Ishmael User Dr ishmael Diablo the chicken.png 20:56, 23 June 2015 (UTC)
I understand just trying to help. good work. OkkeB (talk) 21:00, 23 June 2015 (UTC)
I've kind of started a page here: Training - Is there another page to build on? Flakkenmarsh (talk) 21:11, 23 June 2015 (UTC)

calculation for maximum possible combinations[edit]

i was doing a bit of calculations for the maximum number of combinations for the new traits and thought i would give a short explanation for the interested about why the number is used. I used: per trait you have 3^3 = 27 possible combinations. the traits themselves have 10 possible combinations (123,124,125,134,135,145,234,235,245,345). Since you have 3 traits it comes down to 27*27*27*10 = 196830. alternatively you can see the three traits combined as 3^9, times 10 for the possible traitcombinations, also equals 196830. For the traits with addition of the new 6th traitline, gives traitcombinations another 10 possibilities for a total of 20, bringing the total to 393660. thought it might be usefull. English is not my first language so please forgive any grammar and spelling mistakes I might have made. OkkeB (talk) 12:40, 24 June 2015 (UTC)

Your calculations are right. I actually made the calculations for the previous system and added them to the Trivia section. For some reason they got deleted without much explanation. They didn't "scaremonger" as the comment said. It was just a fact, not an opinion (like all trivia is supposed to be), that the previous system had more than 360,000,000 combinations. The fact that most of them were useless doesn't mean that from the new 196k+ combinations most of them aren't useless. That will always be the case in these kind of systems, most combinatinos won't make any sense. I want to request that the deleted trivia is brought back. If anything it actually speaks that the new system is much cleaner and easier to balance than the previous system allowing for build diversity, not the opposite. Superjugy (talk) 18:17, 25 June 2015 (UTC)
The trivia notes already cover most of what you wrote to say, specifically:
  • Players no longer need to spend varying amount of points into a specialization (formerly "trait line"), instead all specialization slots are fully unlocked to trait into, therefore making it possible to pick three grandmaster major traits at the same time.
  • Many traits have been merged with others, while some have been completely culled, resulting in less traits to choose from but with greater impact on gameplay; because of these changes, players have three major traits for every tier (adept, master, and grandmaster). For some professions, several minor traits had their effects increased, so choosing a specific specialization may become scope-defining.
The number of possible trait allocations before and after the patch is interesting enough though. Tyndel (talk) 22:17, 30 June 2015 (UTC)
I agree. If it can be cleaned up, by all means we should. I only added the clarification because it was taken down before because of "scaremongering" reasons. English is not my main language so if anyone wants to clean it up or tell me what to clean up, I'm OK with it. Superjugy (talk) 22:45, 30 June 2015 (UTC)

removing outdated information[edit]

More then half of this page is fully outdated, not usefull anymore. Examples: Trait types --> in new system there is only a very minor difference, no real need to differentiate anymore.

Trait lines --> they no longer give attribute points, so all information pertaining to that should also be removed.

Trait tiers --> not really a difference anymore, since you can unlock all traits of a single specialization depending only on hero points, leveling doesn't matter, after 21 at least.

Trait points --> gone

Whole of Mechanics --> all mechanics changed, should only be a short explanation now about using hero points to get the triats to use.

Trait table --> no longer needed since it's more or less the same as list of traits at the bottom off the page right now

I don't know what wikipedia 'etiquette' demands but can I just remove all the unneded info? or should an admin or whatever do that? OkkeB (talk) 15:25, 24 June 2015 (UTC)

You are completely free to change what you want, but I would suggest writing a draft in your userspace first. That allows us to remove outdated information and replace it with the new information in the same step. It's less disruptive that way. We're not in a rush to make changes. You can write an outline or the whole thing depending determined you are.--Relyk ~ talk < 15:54, 24 June 2015 (UTC)
Relyk's right, we can't just throw any of that out. Types and tiers are still important: a) I'm pretty sure tiers are still locked by level progression, b) minor traits are still "always on" versus having to pick 1 major trait per tier, c) they determine the hero point cost to unlock the trait. —Dr Ishmael User Dr ishmael Diablo the chicken.png 16:01, 24 June 2015 (UTC)
i just had a new character to lvl 21, first level you can get a specialization, could unlock the 2nd tier minor trait immediatly, so pretty sure the rest can be unlocked as well. Tried it on two different characters. Rest are indeed good points. Just not sure if it is important enought to have a whole section, not just be referred to as part of another section OkkeB (talk) 16:05, 24 June 2015 (UTC)
made a first draft for the new traits page, removed all the outdated info and wrote some of the new info. just seems really empty now. Also dont know how to/ what to change the images to. OkkeB (talk) 16:36, 24 June 2015 (UTC)
maybe take part of the information that is now on it's on page at specializations and put them on this page instead? OkkeB (talk) 16:38, 24 June 2015 (UTC)
I went ahead and tweaked this article to match current state, re-wording some stuff might be necessary. I also copy-pasted the information OkkeB compiled, and removed a lot of uneeded information which look more appropriate for other pages. I kept trivia because... trivias! yay! Feel free to change whatever you feel like it's out of place, just remember this is simply describing what a trait is, and how to unlock/equip them. – Valento msg 17:57, 25 June 2015 (UTC)
Yeah my first actual addition to gw2wiki ^^ OkkeB (talk) 19:21, 25 June 2015 (UTC)

Choosing traits from more than 3 Specializations[edit]

Is it possible to choose traits from more than 3 Specializations if you don't "go all the way" to Grandmaster in 1 or more Specializations?

For example, I only go up to Adept in 1 Specialization, and Grandmaster in 2 Specializations. Will my leftover points be spend-able on a 4th Specialization up to Master? Or maybe Adept for both a 4th and 5th Specialization?

-- 08:25, 12 November 2015 (UTC)

No. You can only select 3 specializations at a time. Traits are selected from those 3 specializations. —Dr Ishmael User Dr ishmael Diablo the chicken.png 14:51, 12 November 2015 (UTC)

Feedback 2020/10/21[edit]

trait interface image is that of a guard, not an ele 13:42, 21 October 2020 (UTC)

Thanks, fixed. The previous version of the image was using ele traits, and the uploader of the new version probably just forgot to change the text. ~Sime 13:47, 21 October 2020 (UTC)

Unused weapon proficiency icons[edit]

Just leaving unused weapon proficiency icons here so they are not unused. —Kvothe (talk) 15:46, 29 December 2020 (UTC)