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    Boonstrip Scourge
    August 2023

    WvW - Zerg
    Offensive Support
    Recommended icon Recommended


    Illustrious Masque icon Superior Rune of the Ranger icon
    Berserker's HelmSuperior Rune of the Ranger
    Illustrious Epaulets icon Superior Rune of the Ranger icon
    Berserker's ShouldersSuperior Rune of the Ranger
    Illustrious Doublet icon Superior Rune of the Ranger icon
    Berserker's ChestSuperior Rune of the Ranger
    Illustrious Wristguards icon Superior Rune of the Ranger icon
    Berserker's GlovesSuperior Rune of the Ranger
    Illustrious Breeches icon Superior Rune of the Ranger icon
    Berserker's LegsSuperior Rune of the Ranger
    Illustrious Footwear icon Superior Rune of the Ranger icon
    Berserker's BootsSuperior Rune of the Ranger

    Weapons & Sigils

    Axe icon Superior Sigil of Energy icon
    Berserker's AxeSuperior Sigil of Energy
    Focus icon Superior Sigil of Nullification icon
    Berserker's FocusSuperior Sigil of Nullification
    Greatsword icon Superior Sigil of Energy icon Superior Sigil of Nullification icon
    Mist Lord's Greatsword GreatswordSuperior Sigil of Energy Superior Sigil of Nullification


    Quiver of a Thousand Arrows icon
    Berserker's Backpiece
    Black Ice Earring icon
    Berserker's Accessory
    Asgeir's Talisman icon
    Berserker's Accessory
    Asgeir's Amulet icon
    Berserker's Amulet
    Black Ice Band icon
    Berserker's Ring
    Mistborn Band icon
    Berserker's Ring
    Relic icon
    Relic of Speed


    Spiced Peppercorn Cheesecake icon Potent Superior Sharpening Stone icon
    Spiced Peppercorn Cheesecake Potent Superior Sharpening Stone


    Mighty WvW Infusion icon
    18xMighty WvW Infusion

    Utility Skills


    Scourge can play an important role in any World vs World battle. In large scale fights you provide pressure breaking up the enemy squad through area damage, boon removal/corruption, single target bursts and finally supporting allies by giving barrier, condition removal might and a new addition alacrity.

    Build Fundamentals

    Unlike other necromancer specializations, you have no additional health bar or shroud form with skills that replace your weapons.  Instead you have access to sand shades with skills that can be used if you have enough life force except for Manifest Sand Shade.  Life force can be gained via nearby deaths, traits or using certain weapon skills such as Ghastly Claws , Soul Grasp

    Some shade skills have powerful effects and can strike enemies near you and where you place Manifest Sand Shade, for example Sandstorm Shroud.  Each shade skill has a purpose and its important to use them wisely at the appropriate time whilst also managing your lifeforce.

    TIP: You can stack/build up life force with other Necro’s whilst out of combat before the fight, simply replace utility skills with minions and summon them, swap back in the skills you need and you will see upon the minions death this will grant you life force (Please note the cooldowns of the skills you swap back in will be effected)

    Most organized squads will be coordinating spikes and bombs on enemy groups, this means your shades, elite skill Ghastly Breach and wells, make sure not to use them until the commander calls for them.  Your elite skill Ghastly Breach will more than likely also be used in coordination with all other scourges or maybe in combination with key skills from other professions such as Winds of Disenchantment. Predicting the enemy movement and positioning your abilities accordingly is very important for your effectiveness as this build utilizes a lot of stationary area attacks.

    Scourges also have powerful ways for supporting your party in the form of health barrier’s, these take damage prior to the player’s health bar (Note: Barrier disappears 5 seconds after being applied).  Desert Empowerment Sandstorm Shroud Sand Flare and Sand Cascade all apply barrier and thanks to Abrasive Grit these skills will remove conditions, give might.

    Correct rotation and timing of skills is very important (read your skills tooltips!).

    Main Priorities

    Staying alive is the most important priority and this can be achieved by dodging combined with careful positioning.  You may rely on your party to assist you with this, be it receiving stability, superspeed, heals and cleanses.

     TIP: Be Ready to adapt depending on the situation, this could mean swapping the way you play or swapping build via your sigil’s, runes, gear and traits!

    Removing/corrupting boons from single targets and groups of players is your key role.  It’s important to understand how you can achieve this through skill usage.  An example of a single target spike rotation can be seen above top right.

    Boon Removal & General Ability Usage

    This build’s boon removal is spread into four main areas:

    Shade Abilities

    • Nefarious Favor corrupts a boon on enemy targets affected thanks to Path of Corruption, this is a key component of ranged boon removal. (note this trait has been nerfed when using scourge and when used will put the skill on a 18s cooldown)
    • Sandstorm Shroud activates Spiteful Spirit which will burst corrupt boons in a large radius around the necromancer and your manifest sand shade. Used in combination with wells during the bomb spike, worth noting it will also provide yourself and allies with pulsing barrier, condition cleanse and might.

    Weapon Skills

    • Unholy Feast corrupts a boon on up to 5 targets in a 600 radius around the necromancer, also deals good damage. Enemies struck below 50% hit points get hit with an explosion for addition damage.
    • Spinal Shivers is a single target ability that applies Chilled to the target and removes up to 3 boons, dealing extra damage for each boon removed. This ability can hit very hard when removing 3 boons and is excellent for spiking down single targets especially when combined with Ghastly Claws.


    • Well of Corruption The classic boon corruption tool of necromancer – used since the dawn of the game! This skill corrupts one boon per second on up to five targets at range.


    • Sand Flare although often used for the barrier support component, Sand Flare just like all punishment abilities will convert a boon on up to five nearby enemies into Torment
    • Trail of Anguish is your defensive stunbreak ability which may also be used offensively to corrupt boons into Torment  (Also applies Stability to allies as a bonus)
    • Ghastly Breach is your powerful elite ability that once used is dropped at your location, this large pulsing field converts boons into Torment every pulse.

    The key in executing your important task of removing boons from your opponents is swiftly chaining key abilities together. You can see a list of standard combos in the rotation segment of this page.

    The core concept behind ability usage is rotating between weapon skills to keep as many of them off cooldown while also being on the appropriate set depending on your current range/distance to the enemy; scepter/dagger for ranged and axe/focus for melee.

    Your commander is likely to call for specific abilities such as shade spikes, wells or Ghastly Breach so don’t just spam them off cooldown. Removing boons randomly won’t really do that much – it’s very important that all players use their boon removal at the same time not only for maximum effect but also so that damage dealing players are able to capitalize on the vulnerability of your enemies when they have their boons removed!

    You will mostly start the fight with scepter/dagger for more area dmg and boon removal.  On heavy ranged only fights (1200 range) you can start out on axe and focus so that you can use Spinal Shivers first on 1200 ranged targets with boons, its single target burst strip and will allow your chronomancers to pull them closer to your group using Into the Void for you and your squad to quickly attack.

    Once enemies are in range and the shade spike is called by your commander drop one or more Manifest Sand Shade then activate Nefarious Favor, Sand Cascade and Garish Pillar , while doing this get ready to rotate through your weapon skills to corrupt additional boons and to down enemy players or finish them off.

    Swapping weapons often almost off cooldown will maximize your corrupts, sometimes you may camp a certain weapon set a bit longer depending on the current positioning of the fight. Try to judge how the fights are going and adapt.

    Defensive Utility

    Try and use your heal skill, Sand Flare, for when your group is pushing into the enemy in order to give them barrier. You can also use this skill in order to prevent allies from downing to Illusion of Life expiring. Try to cast Sand Flare when there is 2-3 seconds left on the illusion of life effect as barrier lasts 5 seconds. If someone is calling out that they are about to down to it, and they are in your party you can also use Sand Cascade or Sandstorm Shroud to add more barrier to them if needed.

    Nefarious Favor converts two conditions into boons which will be a nice bonus when using this skill offensively, particularly as it will convert Immobilize into Resistance.

    Trail of Anguish is a stunbreak and causes the player to leave a trail that applies Stability and Swiftness to you and allies that cross it – (Note: The Infinite target cap has now been nerfed and is 10)


    Wells are ranged pulsing area attacks, this means to get maximum value out of them it’s very important to place them correctly. Specifically try to place your wells slightly ahead of your enemies instead of where they are at the exact moment you start casting so that they run through them and get hit multiple times instead of being able to easily run or evade through them.

    Dropping your wells when your commander calls for them is an important priority for this build.  The two wells you will be running are: Well of Corruption and Well of Suffering,  Save your wells for the call, one or two wells randomly thrown out won’t do anything.  If every necromancer in the squad uses their wells at the same time, the damage and boon corruption will have huge impact on the fights outcome as it will not only deal significant damage but also enable your damage dealers.

    Try to give your commander cooldown timers for your wells, usually when you are about 10 seconds away from getting Well of Corruption back. Wells are a very a important cooldown and this information will allow your commander to know when the squad is ready to unleash another bomb.

    Always use Well of Corruption before Well of Suffering as it has a longer cooldown and because it is always best to corrupt boons first then deal damage.

    Shade Abilities

    Manifest Sand Shade and shade abilities (Nefarious Favor, Sand Cascade,Garish Pillar and Sandstorm Shroud) are the elite specialization mechanic for scourge, shade abilities (except Manifest Sand Shade)  consume a fixed amount of life force to use and can all be cast instantly while performing other actions.

    Manifest Sand Shade creates a shade that covers a small radius and lasts for 15 seconds at a targeted location. You can have up to three shades out at a given time and you can store up to three Manifest Sand Shade charges at a time, with a new Manifest Sand Shade charge replenishing every 15 seconds. This means that you need to be careful to not waste Manifest Sand Shade charges as if you use all of them it’ll take a fairly long time to get them back and good shade usage will greatly impact your effectiveness.  All of your shade abilities will hit two targets around you and two additional targets in each of your shades created by Manifest Sand Shade.

    Placing Manifest Sand Shade is not instant cast but shade skills (f2-f5) are, this means you may use them simultaneously whilst dodging.

    You can precast shade abilities while casting Manifest Sand Shade and they’ll activate around the new shade because shade abilities have a half second delay on activation, you can use this to make your shade spike quicker.  Just like other ground area attacks on this build, when using shades offensively try to position them such that your opponents will run through them so you get maximum value.


    Superior Sigil of Absorption  maybe swapped in if you feel you do not need Superior Sigil of Energy on both weapon sets.

    As for attributes, you may wish to add some Marauder and Cavalier if you feel you are struggling to survive.  This will give you more health and toughness.





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