Guild Wars 2 PVE Builds: Power Reaper, Highest DPS and Incredible AoE Damage
The Power Reaper has received significant buffs, reclaiming its position as one of the highest DPS builds in Guild Wars 2. With incredible AoE damage, a satisfying rotation, and the ability to cosplay as an edge lord, the Power Reaper is a force to be reckoned with. After years of being overshadowed, the recent buffs have propelled the Reaper back into the limelight, making it a formidable class in raids and other challenging content. In this guide, we will explore the mechanics, weapons, skills, traits, and gear necessary to excel as a Power Reaper in PvE.
- Reaper Mechanics
- Gear, Food & Utility
- Shroud Loop
- Staff Loop
- Greatsword Loop
- Rotation Tips
↖ Reaper Mechanics
Equipping the Reaper specialization replaces your Death Shroud with the Reaper Shroud, offering more aggressive AoE skills. The Reaper Shroud is crucial for maximizing your damage, so it is important to minimize damage taken while in this form to preserve your life force. Your auto attack in the Reaper Shroud cleaves through enemies and grants life force on the third strike, thanks to a Reaper trait.
Discharge, one of your shroud skills, propels you forward, attacking enemies nine times and inflicting blindness. Infusing Terror, another shroud skill, provides stability and a significant 66% damage reduction for 6 seconds. You are activating this skill while in the Reaper Shroud protects your life force and enables more frequent use of your shroud skills. Soul Spiral, a fun and impactful skill spins you around, striking 12 times and applying poison. Executioner's Scythe deals massive damage and stuns your target, with increased effectiveness against lower-health enemies.
The recommended weapons for Power Reaper are the Greatsword and the Staff.
- Auto Attack Chain: The auto attack chain on Greatsword will generate life force and, on the third strike, apply chill and fully recharge your Greatsword skill 2, Gravedigger.
- Gravedigger: This classic reaper skill deals damage to up to 5 enemies around you. If the target is below 50% health, it instantly recharges. Use this skill frequently in your rotation.
- Death Spiral: This skill strikes five times, inflicting vulnerability and generating life force. It is a world finisher and can be spammed during your rotation for maximum damage.
- Nightfall: Nightfall casts an expanding AoE at your feet, blinding enemies and converting 4 burns into conditions. This skill is useful for crowd control and condition management.
- Grasping Darkness: Grasping Darkness attacks and chills foes in front of you while also generating life force on each hit. Note that there is a long aftercast time, so cancel it by casting another skill, swapping weapons, or stowing your weapon to speed up your rotation.
- Necrotic Grasp: This auto attack skill pierces through enemies and generates life force. It has low damage and should primarily be used for life force generation.
- Mark of Blood: Mark of Blood deals strike damage, inflicts bleeding on foes, and grants you regeneration. It contributes to condition application and sustainability.
- Chilling Lance: This skill deals significant strike damage, applies chill and poison, and leaves a poison field. It is crucial for synergy with Gravedigger and Death Spiral's world finishes.
- Putrid Mark: Putrid Mark deals strike damage, acts as a blast finisher, and transfers three conditions back to your target. It is an emergency condition cleanse option.
- Reaper's Mark: Reaper's Mark deals a massive spike of damage and inflicts fear on enemies it hits. Use it for burst damage in your rotation.
The Power Reaper build relies heavily on wells for ticking AoE damage over time. These wells are further amplified when combined with the Reaper Shroud. In addition to wells, the build also utilizes utility skills and minions for added damage and utility. Here are the recommended skills for the Power Reaper build:
- Blood Fiend: Summons a friendly minion that transfers health to you with each attack.
- Well of Suffering: Inflicts vulnerability on enemies and deals significant damage in six spikes.
- Well of Darkness: Provides utility by blinding enemies on each strike and dealing damage in six spikes.
- You Are All Weaklings: A highest damaging skill that also serves as a stun break and grants you might and weakness. Use it in the melee range.
- Flesh Golem: Default elite skill for drawing aggro and providing single target crowd control (CC).
Depending on the fight, you can swap out skills based on the utility required. For example:
- Spectral Grasp: Extra pulls for mob control or additional CC.
- Poison Cloud: Projectile barrier for fights where projectiles are an issue.
- Well of Corruption: Higher upfront burst damage for fights with short phrases.
- Lich Form: Extra burst damage at the start of the fight by activating the 4 skills and then exiting.
The traits for the Power Reaper build focus on maximizing power damage and taking advantage of damage modifiers. Here are the recommended traits:
- Spite: Increases overall power damage and provides various damage modifiers.
- Reaper's Might: Grants more power and less condition damage when in Shroud.
- Close to Death: Skyrockets damage when enemies are below 50% health.
- Soul Reaping: Helps sustain life force for entering Reaper Shroud more frequently and provides damage modifiers.
- Reaper's Onslaught: Grants additional ferocity and quickness while in Shroud and reduces the recharge of Shroud skills.
↖ Gear, Food & Utility
To optimize your Power Reaper build, consider the following gear and consumables:
- Gear: Berserker's gear and Assassin's amulet are recommended for reaching 100% critical chance. Use Sigil of Accuracy to further fine-tune your crit chance.
- Runes: Rune of the Reaper provides additional power, crit chance, and damage modifiers, making it an ideal choice for Power Reaper builds.
- Sigil: Sigil of Force is recommended for its flat damage increase, which complements power-based builds.
- Food: Choose power and ferocity food such as Sous-Vide Steaks or Sweet and Spicy Butternut Squash to maximize your damage output.
The Power Reaper rotation revolves around entering and exiting Reaper's Shroud to maintain the Soul Barbs damage buff and take advantage of the damage modifiers while in Shroud. The following rotation guide will help you unleash your full potential:
- Use Greatsword skill 5.
- Immediately swap to Staff and use skill 5.
- Use Staff skills 3.
↖ Shroud Loop
- Enter Reaper's Shroud and use Well of Darkness, followed by Well of Suffering.
- Perform one auto-attack chain.
- Use Shroud skill 2.
- Perform two auto-attack chains.
- Use Shroud skill 2 again.
- Perform one auto-attack chain.
↖ Staff Loop
- Exit Reaper's Shroud and begin the staff loop.
- Use Staff skill 2.
- Use Staff skills 3.
- Use Staff skills 5.
- Weapon swap to continue the rotation.
↖ Greatsword Loop
- Use Greatsword skill 2.
- Use Greatsword skill 3.
- Perform one auto-attack chain.
- Use Greatsword Skill 2 again.
- Use Greatsword skill 4.
- Repeat the Shroud Loop, as mentioned earlier.
If you enter Reaper's Shroud from Greatsword, perform an extra auto-attack chain after the third Shroud skill 2 to align your Greatsword cooldowns more effectively.
↖ Rotation Tips
Here are some additional tips to enhance your rotation on Power Reaper:
- As your target's health decreases, your rotation will change. When the target is below 50% health, use Gravedigger to replace auto-attack chains on Greatsword.
- Spam Gravedigger to reduce its aftercast and maximize its usage.
- When the target is below 25% health, start using Shroud Skill 5 just before Shroud Skill 4 to optimize your damage output.
- Avoid auto-attacking the Staff as much as possible, as it is less impactful for DPS.
- Greatsword Skill 5 has a long aftercast. Cancel it by stowing your weapon, using another skill (e.g., Greatsword skill 4), or weapon swapping after using Greatsword skill 5.
- Enter and exit Reaper's Shroud before the fight starts to have the Soul Barbs damage buff active. The time it correctly so that you enter Shroud right after your opener.
With the Power Reaper build, you can cosplay as the god of death, deal high damage, and outperform your teammates. This build excels in both instanced content and open-world encounters. With personal quickness, vulnerability application, a second health bar, and massive AoE cleave, Power Reaper offers a thrilling and satisfying gameplay experience. Enjoy the newfound power and let your Reaper flourish on the battlefield.
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