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Attributes are characteristics which improve a character's effectiveness in combat. Each profession has access to ten attributes, with nine being common across all professions and one being profession-specific.

Primary attributes increase automatically when a level is gained. All attributes can be increased by investing in traits, through wearing equipment and in PvE, through the use of consumables.

Primary attributes[edit]

All professions have four common primary attributes, two offensive and two defensive. Attributes grow with level, starting with 24 in each at level 1. Each level up through level 9 grants 4 points to each attribute; levels 10–19 grant 6 points each; 20–29, 8 points; ... 70–79, 18 points; 80, 20 points. The total by level 80 is 916 in each attribute for all professions.

In addition, primary attributes can be increased by spending points in a relevant trait line or from equipment.

Secondary attributes[edit]

There are five secondary attributes common to all professions; three are offensive and two are defensive. In contrast to the primary attributes, secondary attributes do not automatically increase as characters gain levels. They can be increased by spending points in the relevant trait line or with equipment bonuses.

  • Boon Duration.png Boon Duration — Improves the duration of all boons applied by the character.
  • Condition Damage.png Condition Damage — Improves the damage done by conditions like burning, poison, confusion, and bleeding.
  • Condition Duration.png Condition Duration — Improves the duration of all conditions inflicted by the character.
  • Critical Damage.png Critical Damage — Improves the damage multiplier on critical strikes.
  • Healing Power.png Healing Power — Improves all outgoing heals that your character does, including self heals.

Profession attributes[edit]

There are eight profession specific attributes, which can be used only by characters of the corresponding profession. Similar to secondary attributes, profession attributes do not automatically improve as characters gain levels. They can be increased by spending trait points in a corresponding trait line.


Traits provide continuous passive combat benefits to characters by adding additional effects to skills and other combat abilities. Each profession has access to 15 minor and 60 major traits across five different trait lines.

  • Minor traits are represented by small hexagons; minor traits are automatically granted and cannot be changed.
  • Major traits are represented by larger hexagons; major traits must be selected from a list when a major trait slot is unlocked.

Traits are unlocked and slots become available based on the number of points allocated to a trait line. The following table shows the layout of traits:

Trait tier Adept Master Grandmaster
Trait type Minor Major Minor Major Minor Major
Unlocks at 5 10 15 20 25 30

Based on the above table when 25 points are allocated, all 3 minor traits are unlocked as are the Adept and Master major slots and traits.

There is only one minor trait at each of the 3 tiers. Adept level major traits can be used in any of the 3 major slots (if available), master level majors can use the master or grandmaster slot, and grandmaster level major traits can occupy only that slot.

Regarding major traits, there are usually 6 per line for adept level, 4 for master and 2 for grandmaster.

Trait lines by profession[edit]

Each profession has five unique trait lines and one unique attribute.

* denotes a profession-specific attribute


Guardian tango icon 20px.png Guardian (trait list)
Line Primary attribute Secondary attribute
Zeal Power.png Power Condition Duration.png Condition Duration
Radiance Precision.png Precision Condition Damage.png Condition Damage
Valor Toughness.png Toughness Critical Damage.png Critical Damage
Honor Vitality.png Vitality Healing Power.png Healing Power
Virtues Guardian tango icon 20px.png Virtue Recharge Rate* Boon Duration.png Boon Duration
Warrior tango icon 20px.png Warrior (trait list)
Line Primary attribute Secondary attribute
Strength Power.png Power Condition Duration.png Condition Duration
Arms Precision.png Precision Condition Damage.png Condition Damage
Defense Toughness.png Toughness Healing Power.png Healing Power
Tactics Vitality.png Vitality Boon Duration.png Boon Duration
Discipline Warrior tango icon 20px.png Burst Damage* Critical Damage.png Critical Damage


Engineer tango icon 20px.png Engineer (trait list)
Line Primary attribute Secondary attribute
Explosives Power.png Power Condition Duration.png Condition Duration
Firearms Precision.png Precision Condition Damage.png Condition Damage
Inventions Toughness.png Toughness Healing Power.png Healing Power
Alchemy Vitality.png Vitality Boon Duration.png Boon Duration
Tools Engineer tango icon 20px.png Tool Belt Recharge Rate* Critical Damage.png Critical Damage
Ranger tango icon 20px.png Ranger (trait list)
Line Primary attribute Secondary attribute
Marksmanship Power.png Power Condition Duration.png Condition Duration
Skirmishing Precision.png Precision Critical Damage.png Critical Damage
Wild. Survival Toughness.png Toughness Condition Damage.png Condition Damage
Nature Magic Vitality.png Vitality Boon Duration.png Boon Duration
Beastmastery Ranger tango icon 20px.png Pet Attribute Bonus* Healing Power.png Healing Power
Thief tango icon 20px.png Thief (trait list)
Line Primary attribute Secondary attribute
Deadly Arts Power.png Power Condition Duration.png Condition Duration
Critical Strikes Precision.png Precision Critical Damage.png Critical Damage
Shadow Arts Toughness.png Toughness Healing Power.png Healing Power
Acrobatics Vitality.png Vitality Boon Duration.png Boon Duration
Trickery Thief tango icon 20px.png Steal Recharge Rate* Condition Damage.png Condition Damage


Elementalist tango icon 20px.png Elementalist (trait list)
Line Primary attribute Secondary attribute
Fire Magic Power.png Power Condition Duration.png Condition Duration
Air Magic Precision.png Precision Critical Damage.png Critical Damage
Earth Magic Toughness.png Toughness Condition Damage.png Condition Damage
Water Magic Vitality.png Vitality Healing Power.png Healing Power
Arcana Elementalist tango icon 20px.png Attunement Recharge Rate* Boon Duration.png Boon Duration
Mesmer tango icon 20px.png Mesmer (trait list)
Line Primary attribute Secondary attribute
Domination Power.png Power Condition Duration.png Condition Duration
Dueling Precision.png Precision Critical Damage.png Critical Damage
Chaos Toughness.png Toughness Boon Duration.png Boon Duration
Inspiration Vitality.png Vitality Healing Power.png Healing Power
Illusions Mesmer tango icon 20px.png Shredding Recharge Rate* Condition Damage.png Condition Damage
Necromancer tango icon 20px.png Necromancer (trait list)
Line Primary attribute Secondary attribute
Spite Power.png Power Condition Duration.png Condition Duration
Curses Precision.png Precision Condition Damage.png Condition Damage
Death Magic Toughness.png Toughness Boon Duration.png Boon Duration
Blood Magic Vitality.png Vitality Healing Power.png Healing Power
Soul Reaping Necromancer tango icon 20px.png Life Force Pool* Critical Damage.png Critical Damage


A skill is an ability which is activated by the player to perform an action. It is through skills that a character is able to do damage, protect themselves and their allies, and perform actions with objects in the environment. Skill selection is one of the most significant ways a player can customize how their character plays.

Skills are picked through a choice of weapon and unlocking and selecting slot skills into the skill bar. Skills are automatically improved as the player gains levels, and manually by increasing attributes and selecting traits. Types of skills available to a character are determined primarily by its profession with a few racial skills and a very few global special skills.

Learning new skills[edit]

Initially, characters in the Player versus Environment and World versus World settings are limited in terms of available skills. Additional skills are acquired depending on their position in the skill bar: weapon skills (occupying slots 1-5) are unlocked through kills made with the respective weapon, while slot skills (slots 6-10) are purchased with skill points.

Weapon skills[edit]

Only the first skill on a weapon is available when a new weapon class is equipped. The remaining weapon skills are unlocked sequentially by using it to kill mobs. As kills are made, the locked, greyed-out skills gradually fill with color from left to right. Once an icon is fully colored, the skill is unlocked and will be available for use with any weapon of the same class. A summary of all weapon skills and unlock progress can be brought up in the Hero panel.

Slot skills[edit]

Healing, utility, and elite skills — collectively, slot skills — are available for selection by the player to complement a character's weapon skills. These skills use slots 6 – 10 on the skill bar: slot 6 for healing skills, slot 10 for elite skills, and the others for utility skills. New characters only have slot 6 unlocked; the remaining slots unlock in sequence as the character reaches levels 5, 10, 20, and 30.

Slot skills must be purchased with skill points gained from leveling up (starting at level 5) or via completion of skill challenges scattered throughout the game in PvE and WvW environments. The skill costs are outlined in the tables below. For utility skills, 5 skills in a tier must be purchased to unlock the next higher tier; for elite skills, 2 skills from the first tier must be purchased to unlock the second tier.

Skill types[edit]

Skills with similar behaviors are grouped into types.


Guardian tango icon 20px.png Guardian (List of guardian skills)
  • Consecrations — apply an area effect that aids allies or punishes enemies.
  • Meditations — support skills which can break out of stun or teleport the user.
  • Spirit weapons — summon a temporary spirit weapon to fight; dismissable for a special ability.
  • Symbols — apply an area effect locally which hinders enemies and aids allies.
  • Tomes — locks the user in place and grants powerful special skills.
  • Wards — areas across the ground that prevent enemies from crossing them.
Warrior tango icon 20px.png Warrior (List of warrior skills)
  • Banners — banners that buff allies and can be picked up, moved and replanted
  • Physical — involves controlling foes and (forced) movement.
  • Stances — short-term defensive or offensive enhancements.


Engineer tango icon 20px.png Engineer (List of engineer skills)
  • Device kits — replaces weapon skills to provide skills of a special nature and purpose.
  • Elixirs — induce random effects to support yourself, your team or to harass your enemies.
  • Gadgets — utilize mechanical gadgetry like rocket boots and battering rams.
  • Turret skills — deploy stationary devices to help defend and control an area.
  • Weapon kits — replaces weapon skills to provide more specialized weapons.
Ranger tango icon 20px.png Ranger (List of ranger skills)
  • Pet skillspet-specific skills.
  • Pet utility skills — utility skills that affect your pet.
  • Spirits — nature spirits which influence the battlefield around their location.
  • Survival skills — use survival-themed skills to gain control.
Thief tango icon 20px.png Thief (List of thief skills)
  • Dual wield skills — the third weapon skill for thieves is determined by both the main-hand and off-hand weapon.
  • Deceptions — skills that allow for hasty maneuvers.
  • Stealth — replace the first weapon skill while stealthed.
  • Tricks — deceptive tricks to gain control over enemies.
  • Venoms — apply a poisonous creatures' venom to your weapon to inflict conditions with attacks.


Elementalist tango icon 20px.png Elementalist (List of elementalist skills)
  • Arcanes — skills using non-elemental magical energy to boost damage.
  • Auras — skills using elemental magic to support or defend the caster.
  • Cantrips — magical tricks, sorcery, and charms which activate on an instant.
  • Conjures — summon potent environmental weapons for yourself and another for an ally.
  • Glyphs — grants an effect or supportive nature based on current attunement.
Mesmer tango icon 20px.png Mesmer (List of mesmer skills)
  • Clones — temporary allies with caster's name and appearance to mislead the enemy.
  • Glamours — ethereal fields that have special, manipulative effects.
  • Manipulations — skills used to mislead opponents.
  • Mantras — chargeable skills with an instant cast when triggered.
  • Phantasms — temporary phantom versions of the caster which attack enemies with different abilities.
Necromancer tango icon 20px.png Necromancer (List of necromancer skills)
  • Corruptions — self-inflicted suffering in form of conditions grants powerful effects.
  • Marks — ground-targeted spells which can be triggered manually.
  • Minions — undead allies that attack foes and can be consumed by their master.
  • Spectrals — spells using an otherworldly spectral energy.
  • Wells — a persistent spell that affects the surrounding area.


Some tango icon 20px.png Multiple professions
  • Area skills — skills which affect the area around a targeted foe or plot of ground.
  • Chains — three skills that share a single skill slot, which are executed in sequence on a single target.
  • Channeled skills — activated, then continuously cast for a set time.
  • Charge skill — held down to power them up for more impressive attacks.
  • Sequence skills — after using a skill, it is replaced by another.
  • Shouts — affect a large area and give bonuses to allies or debuff enemies.
  • Signets — provide a passive benefit, but can also be activated for a greater effect.
  • Toggle skills — turned on or off for long-lasting effects.
  • Transforms — allows the user to temporarily become something else, gaining a variety of new abilities.
  • Traps — effects placed on the ground and triggered by enemies walking over them.


Boons are positive effects with limited duration, the counterpart to the negative conditions. The duration of boons can be stacked, but their effectiveness does not stack, except for might. For example, if a 10 second regeneration buff was placed on an ally with 5 seconds of regeneration still remaining, that ally would not gain extra regeneration but the buff would have 15 seconds remaining. Boons replace the enchantments from the original Guild Wars, and are designed to simplify the buff system. Boon duration is accurately added and will not be rounded.

List of boons[edit]

Icon Name Description
Aegis.png Aegis Block the next attack.
Fury.png Fury 20% critical chance increase. Stacks in duration.
Might.png Might X damage per attack increase. Stacks intensity.
Protection.png Protection 33% damage reduction. Stacks in duration.
Regeneration.png Regeneration Regenerates X health per second. Stacks in duration.
Retaliation.png Retaliation Does X damage to an opponent each time they hit you. Stacks in duration.
Stability.png Stability Cannot be knocked down, pushed back, launched, stunned, dazed, floated, sunk, or feared.
Swiftness.png Swiftness 33% movement speed increase. Stacks in duration.
Vigor.png Vigor Faster endurance regeneration. Stacks in duration.


A condition is a negative effect that can be inflicted against enemies through the use of skills and affecting traits. Conditions are characterized by their effect and duration. When a condition is reapplied (to a foe who already has it), some conditions will stack increasing in effect, some conditions will increase in duration, and a couple will have no change. When a condition is removed using a skill, the entire stack of that condition is removed. Condition duration is accurately added and will not be rounded.

List of conditions[edit]

Icon Name Description
Bleeding.png Bleeding Inflicts X damage per second. Stacks in intensity.
Blinded.png Blind Causes the target's next hit to miss instead.
Burning.png Burning Inflicts X damage per second. Stacks in duration.
Chilled.png Chilled Reduces movement speed and skill recharge by 66%. Stacks in duration.
Confusion.png Confusion Inflicts X damage each time a foe uses skill. Stacks in intensity.
Crippled.png Crippled Reduces movement speed by 50%. Stacks in duration.
Fear.png Fear Causes the target to run directly away from the caster.
Immobile.png Immobilized Immobilizes and prevents dodge. Stacks in duration.
Poisoned.png Poison Inflicts X damage per second. Reduces outgoing heals by 33%. Stacks in duration.
Vulnerability.png Vulnerability Increases damage the target takes by 1%. Stacks in intensity.
Weakness.png Weakness Causes 50% of attacks to be glancing and reduces endurance regeneration by 50%. Stacks in duration.


Combos, also called cross-profession combos or skill combinations, happen when skills interact with each other to create an additional effect. A skill must be a combo field or a combo finisher to be combined, which is an effect which is included in the skill description. For a combo to occur a combo field skill is used creating an area effect and then one or more combo finishers can interact with the field to create a combo. The largest number of combos are available through two characters of different professions working together but combos can also be created with two of the same profession or a single character.

The combo field, or initiator, is a skill that creates an area effect of a particular type. The type is a recognizable element or characteristic which determines the effect they cause on a finisher; for example, a Flamewall will allow some eligible finishers to inflict burning. Fields are either a circular field or a linear "wall". For circular fields, all finishers will combo if they activate while the character is inside the field. For linear combo fields, leap and projectile finishers will combo so long as they pass through the combo field on the way to their destination.

The combo finisher is a skill which causes movement through or within the initiator's field such as creating a projectile or spinning or jumping the player. An eligible initiator augments the finisher by adding damage or creating other effects. For example, using Cyclone Axe near a Flamewall throws fire projectiles in different directions. Finishers can only interact with one initiator at a time.

Whenever a combo is created, a notification will show on the player's screen, indicating the effect that was generated by the combo.

Combo effects[edit]

Field Blast Finisher Leap Finisher Projectile Finisher Whirl Finisher
Dark Area Blindness Blindness Lifesteal Leeching Bolts
Ethereal Area Chaos Armor Chaos Armor Confusion Confusing Bolts
Fire Area Might (x3) Fire Armor Burning Burning Bolts
Ice Area Frost Armor Frost Armor Chilled Chilling Bolts
Light Area Retaliation Retaliation Remove Condition Cleansing Bolts
Lightning Area Swiftness Dazing Strike Vulnerability Brutal Bolts
Poison Area Weakness Weakness Poison Poison Bolts
Smoke Area Stealth Stealth Blindness Blinding Bolts
Water Area Healing Healing Regeneration Healing Bolts