The following build is designed to guide you through your first playthrough, or to simply offer a decent and reliable Core build if you are on Free to Play account. Core builds are not advised to use later in game due to superiority of Elite Specializations.
While its name could suggest otherwise, Guardian is an extraordinary fighter, smiting opponents with fiery consecration and slicing with powerful and dynamic sword-wielding techniques.
This build focuses on dealing heavy direct damage enhanced with boons provided mostly by Guardian’s Symbols and gear upgrades. You gain access to nearly permanent Fury, almost 25 Might stacks with very decent Resolution, some Quickness, and a multitude of on-demand defensive boons.
Core Guardian shares many fundamental gameplay elements with the end-game Power Dragonhunter build, which could be your next build to unlock.
This build relies on a lot of synergy between weapon skills, traits, boons, conditions, and multiple passive damage-increasing traits that are only active when you meet specific conditions. Your goal is to manage the uptime of these beneficial enhancements.
All this, and the fact that Resolution alone is a very powerful defensive boon, make this buff crucial for this build.
Your general strategy is to use the noted Engage Combo when possible. After this, keep using strong abilities off-cooldown, and use Weapon Swap to keep uptime on your high-damaging abilities across weapon sets.
Shield of Wrath is a powerful defensive ability, but if shield is not destroyed, it explodes increasing your damage, you can also generate some additional Might if you use Shield of Wrath (which is Blast finisher) inside the Fire field from Purging Flames.
Guardian’s profession mechanics are Virtues, a set of 3 additional, powerful passive skills with active ability bound to F1-3 by default. Virtue of Justice will passively apply Burning, Virtue of Resolve will heal you over time, and Virtue of Courage will periodically apply Aegis. Each of them will offer an enhanced effect when used at the cost of not providing passive effects when they are on cooldown.
In most cases, you’ll benefit more from not using your Virtues, but when forced, defensive ones can save you from difficult situations, or if you are not under much pressure, you can use them offensively to provide yourself with more Resolution for increased damage from traits synergy.
Virtue of Justice will provide you with some extra Fury via synergy with Inner Fire and will further increase Critical Chance via Radiant Power, depending on the situation you might or might not want to use its active component.
Since your goal is keeping the enemy Burning, during long fights with a single enemy, the most beneficial will be not using it, but when fighting with a group of mobs or when jumping from enemy to enemy, you want to make use of Renewed Justice that will refresh your Virtue of Justice.
Since this build is designed to be your entry point to Guild Wars 2 world, let’s start with the basics, if you haven’t checked the guides below, give them a read to make yourself familiar with game basics.
Don’t try to invest in Runes and Sigils before you acquire proper level-80 Exotic gear with Berserker’s stats as transferring upgrades is not possible without destroying the item, and retrieving them during the process has a small chance with most salvage kits.
From drops, crafting and level-up rewards pick items with Power, and on later levels supplemented by Precision and Ferocity.