[Top 5] Guild Wars 2 Best AoE Class Builds (Ranked)

When your enemies make the mistake of grouping up into a tight bunch, punish them with a powerful AoE class and defeat them all at once.
When your enemies make the mistake of grouping up into a tight bunch, punish them with a powerful AoE class and defeat them all at once.

Every class in Guild Wars 2 has access to a variety of area-of-effect skills, allowing them to become powerful AoE-centric classes. They have a lot going for them, whether they are using it to support the team with useful AoE healing, buffs, or utilities, or using it to wreak havoc through sheer force and damage. This article will look at the best AoE class builds you can use in your adventures in order to turn your enemies to dust.


5. Herald

The Herald is the first elite specialization of the core Revenant that invokes the power of the Legendary Dragon, Glint, to aid the team by sharing its boons with them. They gain access to powerful Facet skills that, when activated once, grant their buffs to themselves and can be shared with nearby allies. They have seen an increase in play lately due to multiple builds focusing on it being able to provide tons of Quickness buffs.

Why this class is one of the best AOE 

  • The Herald’s Facet skills alone are an easy way to share powerful boons and some passive healing for their teammates which can be essential in group content like raids, strike missions, and even competitive game modes like PvP and World versus World.
  • They, as Revenants, have access to hammers which they wield as ranged weapons. They have powerful AoE skills that are very effective against enemies unlucky enough to be in chokepoints during World versus World.
  • While its elite specialization brethren, the Renegade and Vindicator, have unique AoEs that can be used against their foes to cause massive damage, for this list, you need to do more than simply damage your foes to be of use to your team, especially in World versus World and raids. The Herald shines because of its ability to passively give boons like Fury, Regeneration, Might, and Protection at the cost of maintaining energy upkeep and then activating the skills for stronger effects.

How to build this AOE class:

There are two very similar builds that focus on the Herald’s ability to produce Quickness buffs while doing tons of AoE damage and utility. These are:

AoE Power Score: 81 / 100


4. Dragonhunter

Just because the core Guardian’s first elite specialization is named the Dragonhunter doesn’t mean it solely lives to hunt dragons. These powerful Guardians have honed their powers and proved their resolve through the virtues that they have manifested physically. These virtues now physically aid the Dragonhunter in battle along with their new traps that they wield to stop their foes in their tracks and barrage them with deadly arrows from their longbows.

Why this class is one of the best AOE 

  • The Dragonhunter trades their supportive nature for a more offense-oriented approach, using their Trap skills as powerful AoE attacks that can do a respectable amount of damage and debilitating debuffs.
  • In the hands of a skilled Dragonhunter, these fearsome long-ranged bow masters can easily down enemy opponents and, when timed correctly, deflect their missile attacks. Their longbows have powerful AoE skills that can shut down opponents quickly and effectively.
  • Their upgraded virtues have new and powerful applications to conquer their foes. Spear of Justice tethers nearby enemies to you as you pull them closer, punishing them. Wings of Resolve can heal allies when used on them, or as a gap closer. Shield of Courage is your powerful shield but may leave you open to the flank and rear.

How to build this AOE class:

There are two builds you can use to create a great AoE Dragonhunter. These are:

AoE Power Score: 82 / 100


3. Scourge

The Scourge has made a name for itself as being one of the hardest classes to kill in PvE thanks to it being a Necromancer at its core and having access to multiple sources of barriers. Whether they choose to bring three shades with them or one greater shade from using the Sand Savant major perk, they can inflict huge damage on enemies surrounding them and the activated shades. This gives them greater coverage in providing damage and utility during encounters.

Why this class is one of the best AOE 

  • The Scourge can share its multiple barriers with its team by placing its Sand Shades near its allies. 
  • By placing its Sand Shades strategically within an area, Scourges can deal tons of AoE damage to multiple enemies with condition damage since the shades attack whenever you use your F2-5 skills.
  • Aside from its elite specialization skills, they can use various Necromancer skills that further increase their AoE potential. They may opt to use their Well skills and do more healing or support while taking the Blood Magic trait line or Corruption skills to inflict more condition damage.

How to build this AOE class:

There are two ways to use the Scourge to make it a great AoE Class. The following builds are:

AoE Power Score: 85 / 100


2. Tempest

With their powerful ability to overload their current elemental attunements and various shout skills, the Elementalist’s first elite specialization, the Tempest, makes for a lethal contender to be at the top of the AoE classes. Core Elementalist and its other elite specializations would also make the cut, but the Tempest stands out due to its ease of use, unlike both Weaver and Catalyst, which demand a more complex skill rotation.

Why this class is one of the best AOE 

  • Much like core Elementalist, their staff skills give tons of AoE effects ranging from damage, healing and support, control, and others. They can also switch freely between elements and have another AoE accessible to them.
  • Overloading elements feature various effects that can help their teams in all game modes. Fire drops a highly-damaging flame tornado, causing Burning debuffs. Water creates a bubble around the user to heal itself and its allies. Air creates a storm where the Tempest uses it, inflicting damage on enemies. Earth grants Protection buffs on allies while inflicting Crippled debuffs on enemies and drops a dust cyclone, slowing them down.
  • Their shout skills provide beneficial Auras, each based on the element they represent and giving support to their allies.
  • They can also aid their allies by preventing lethal attacks with their “Rebound!” elite shout, making it a must-have skill for AoE support builds.

How to build this AOE class:

There are three builds that the Tempest can use to showcase its mastery of AoE. These builds are:

AoE Power Score: 88 / 100


1. Firebrand

The Firebrand is the gift that just keeps on giving. Whether you choose to go on the offensive or defensive, it brings its fiery prowess and supportive utility to battle and makes quick work of its foes. They don’t shy away from battle and will always lead the fight with their teammates. When it comes to group content, you can be sure to always have a Firebrand on hand, ready to provide tons of AoEs for the team.

Why this class is one of the best AOE 

  • The Firebrand has access to powerful Tomes which replaces their F1-3 Virtues. When activated, their weapon slots are replaced with offensive or supportive skills based on which virtue they activated. 
  • Their skills have an AoE effect, allowing their teammates to gain supportive buffs, condition cleanses, and healing that can keep them alive even against powerful raid bosses or a clash against an enemy team in PvP or World versus World.
  • Firebrands can be especially lethal as their Condi variant, causing tons of Burning damage on unsuspecting foes, thinking they are using a support build.

How to build this AOE class:

There are multiple ways to build an AoE Firebrand, but these three are the top three ways to do so:

AoE Power Score: 92 / 100


Closing Thoughts

Every class in Guild Wars 2 can provide area-of-effect skills that can provide different effects ranging from doing damage, healing allies, reflecting ranged attacks and many more. While others focus more on the damage-dealing side of the coin, on the flip side, those who can do more than that tend to be accepted more in group situations because their additional utility can potentially save them when encounters become challenging. These five classes prove that they are at the top of the AoE mountain and have shown their worth. 

What did you think, dear reader? Did your favorite profession make it on our list? Do let us know which one deserves to be placed in our best AoE class in Guild Wars 2 and we may update it in the future.

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Whether he is resting in Pelican Town, looping against the Entity or running from zeds in Kentucky, Don offers his tales from his gaming adventures. Just don't give him another gacha game.
Gamer Since: 1990
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: Project Zomboid, Dead By Daylight, Kenshi, etc.
Top 3 Favorite Games:Guild Wars 2, Mass Effect 2, BioShock

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