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Talk:Guide to defeating Magni the Bison

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Easiest method:[edit source]

Any/Ritualist with Signet of Spirits, Dissonance, Shadowsong, Disenchantment, Painful Bond and You Move Like a Dwarf!

That can beat any opponent in the tourny, as long as you drop the right spirit beside the signet - Leeroy Stonekin is the worst for this, Disenchantment or healing hands will out-do spirit damage. YMLaD! to keep people like Thom, Cynn and Magni from beating spirits into the ground, although Dissonance does a decent job of keeping the casters at bay. RuinsFate 19:31, November 3, 2009 (UTC)


The Elementalist/Necro build with Gaze of Contempt is very poor for dealing with Cynn and Danika/Brutus/et al. I could never kill either of Danika's pets, and Cynn...it was like she took no damage at all.

You had trouble with Cynn using that? I utterly blew her up last I played that (I think I put that one up some time). I'll go see her again. --- VipermagiSig.JPG -- (contribs) (talk) 13:12, February 16, 2010 (UTC)
Was lucky, met her third. She still took 140 damage from LH and LO. Kite Phoenix and Inferno, and most of her damage should be negatable. Took a few more casts than, say, Kisai, but it was pretty easy still. Took me less than a minute. --- VipermagiSig.JPG -- (contribs) (talk) 13:24, February 16, 2010 (UTC)
Guaranteed win as a warrior with this bar.

Strength 14 swordsmanship 13

Enraging Charge.jpg Flail.jpg
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Sneak Attack.jpg Dragon Slash.jpg Brawling Headbutt.jpg Low Blow.jpg Body Blow.jpg

Open with EC+FGJ+SA to blind a melee/ranged attack char or just a normal hit against spell casters. Start Flail then chain DS->BH->LB->BB Against melee you'll need to hit them with SA after the first LB. After that it's just chain spamming. Only ones I had trouble with were Argo with his stoneflesh aura and lukas with his ripostes, but after a few rounds it's easy to settle into a pattern which will get them. --BeeD 16:48, May 8, 2010 (UTC)

Mesmer (moved from article)[edit source]

If you don't have factions I suggest Power Drain or Leech Signet as you will be short on energy for some fights anyway. Gwen is a matter of who gets their Backfire up first and how fast you can get your casts off. Danika and Mhenlo can stop attacking and become stalemates depending on which scripts run. If this happens try constantly changing your rotation until opportunity strikes. Razah is impossible. Everything suggested for Magni, himself, worked like a charm. Thanks for that! I finally have my crown. The preceding unsigned comment was added by 96.250.234.92 (contribs) .

How to get an overload of crowns in a matter of minutes (So to speak)[edit source]

Any profession/Ritualist

Signet of Spirits.jpg Pain.jpg Summon Ruby Djinn.jpg Ebon Vanguard Assassin Support.jpg
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Optional.jpg Optional.jpg Optional.jpg


I am a warrior, so I use dolyak signet for protect against Magni, Sprint/Enraging Charge and then immediatly YMLAD to interrupt his Bear Form (Altought even if you miss this, he isn't any treath to you, he just lasts a bit longer) Lion's Comfort and an optional skill for anything else. Any profession can do this and you have your crown in about 15 mins to get 5 tournament tokens. Very easy. Only, you need those PvE-only skills, that's the only problem about it, as most players don't have them when just entering eotn. Good luck anyone with this build! --Jorre22225 20:59, July 30, 2010 (UTC)

Brevity versus usefulness[edit source]

It seems that the major thrust of the recent spate of edits is to make the page shorter, often without much regard for what it does to how usable the information that remains is. The general information has been mostly deleted entirely, and that's perhaps the most important part of the page. Normally, I'd favor just having general information about what is going on and let people find their own builds. This is an exception in that regard, as finding builds that work can be rather tricky, which is why we have a lot of particular builds on this page. But that's no excuse to delete the general information needed to understand what is going on and assemble some other build from what you have. Why delete the information on M. Bison's AI, for example?

Furthermore, builds are not self-executing. Having the right skills on your skillbar doesn't guarantee victory if you don't know what to do with them. So why delete so much of the information on what to do with the builds? Length isn't much of an issue here, as builds section isn't intended for a player to read the whole page in one sitting. Picking one build and reading a couple of paragraphs on that one build was not long before. Someone unwilling to do that isn't going to read two bullet points, either. As the page stands right now, someone who tries the warrior, assassin, ranger, or paragon build will probably conclude that the build doesn't work at all, as the information needed to make them work has been deleted.

If aggregate page length is a problem, then the solution is splitting the page. Break the important information into several pages, rather than simply deleting such information and hoping that people randomly guess that the way to find what they're looking for is to dig through the page history. One could easily make a new page for the single class builds, and another new page for the other builds at the bottom of the page.

Also, each build needs to be its own subsection. That makes them easy to find by clicking on the one you want at the top of the page, rather than scrolling down and having to read a bunch of text to find what you're looking for.

The standard way to string sentences together in English is in paragraphs. Trying to convert everything to bullet points makes the text not flow at all, and is very awkward to read. That really needs to be undone.

Finally, this is a rather unusual page. It's been a while since the last time a debate arose about how the page ought to be organized, and that debate has long since been archived, so I should probably explain it again. Thankfully, a quick copy and paste will cover most of it.


There is a saying that you should never tear down a wall if you don't understand why it was there in the first place. As such, let me explain why the page had to be the way it was.

As you know, GWEN was released around the end of August 2007. People created a page and added random builds here. Most of the builds assumed a particular primary class and a particular secondary. Many people who wanted to beat M. Bison were told that they had to take a ritualist secondary and pay thousands of gold to buy particular skills to beat him with a spirit spammer build. Others were told that they had to go get Ursan Blessing and grind for rank in that a while. Terrible, terrible advice.

Any class can beat the tournament using only skills linked to its primary class, without using PvE-only skills, and without specialty gear. That is, any class can beat the tournament with only what a character should have upon arriving in Gunnar's Hold for the first time. Other approaches can work, too, but at a cost of several platinum to buy unnecessary skills.

When this is pointed out, some will claim that several platinum is insignificant. To this I usually reply, if several platinum doesn't matter to you, will you give me several platinum? I never have gotten anyone to take me up on that. The hypocrites are plenty fond of wasting the gold of others, but not their own. I found this situation wholly unacceptable.

On the wiki, meanwhile, players had added a variety of builds. Many of them assumed a particular secondary profession, and many also assumed the use of pve only skills. This made the builds require most characters to go buy a bunch of particular skills for other classes that they'd never use again, or go get particular pve-only skills and grind rank in them. For the same reason, I found this situation objectionable.

As such, I set out to fix the situation myself. I spent a week testing out various builds, to get a single class build of each class. I completely avoided skills not linked to any class, and tried to avoid even the pve-only skills linked to a class, though I eventually gave up on necromancers and brought necrosis to help with some earlier opponents, though it was unnecessary for M. Bison.

With each build, I got to the fifth opponent in the tournament at least ten times, and fought M. Bison enough times to ensure that the build could usually beat him. This ensured that I would draw most of the earlier opponents and see whether the build I was using could beat them, without having to just guess. If I was unsatisfied with a build, I'd change it and the counter of 10 times to round 5 would start over. For some builds, I'd go through the tournament more times than that, even.

So finally, I had a build for each class that could usually beat the tournament if used properly. The wiki at the time had such builds for mesmers and ritualists, I think, but no other classes. Having such a build for every class was a huge upgrade over what came before, so I put it on the wiki. This project and redoing the previously pitiful Dzagonur Bastion page were the reasons why I registered for the wiki in the first place.


I've chopped my full post there for brevity. If you dig through the archives, you'll find that most of the rest of it talks about the need for testing builds. That's a salient point here as it was to that discussion, but for very different reasons, so it probably needs a different explanation this time.

It doesn't take much knowledge of the game to fix typos. Indeed, if I were to go to a wiki for a game I've never played and go hunting for misspellings and bad grammar and so forth, I could probably make a lot of "good" edits without ever having played the game.

But major reorganizations of a page are a very different matter. If I were to go to a wiki for a game I haven't played, and try to reorganize the strategies explaining how to defeat some major boss, I'd probably mangle it. I wouldn't know what is important and what isn't. I'd simply have no clue about details that would be immediately obvious to someone who played the game regularly. I'd probably make a number of howling errors. And that's why I shouldn't try to reorganize detailed strategies in a game I haven't played.

Now, I'm not accusing anyone here of never having played Guild Wars. But has played versus hasn't played isn't the only characteristic that matters. If I tried to write a page on how to vanquish Perdition Rock, I'd probably get a number of things wrong. I've played Guild Wars a lot, but never vanquished Perdition Rock, so I'd simply be unaware of what ends up being a problem in hard mode and what doesn't.

One important principle is that before I'll reorganize a page, I'll play through the content a lot. Shortly before reorganizing this page in late 2007, I spent about a week doing this particular quest many, many times. I beat the quest about a hundred times, and with a wide variety of disjoint builds. The majority of the single class builds on this page are my work, though some were later updated and improved upon by others.

That sort of experience is necessary to separate what matters in builds, gear, and tactics. It's necessary to distinguish what usually happens from what only occasionally happens. It's necessary to understand how mobs will vary their tactics against a variety of things that you can throw at them. And it's necessary before doing a major reorganization of a page such as this. Indeed, on principle, I only do major reorganizations of pages after having done the mission or whatever many times in a short period of time, and recently. Things that are obvious just after spending a week on such a quest might well be forgotten years later.

Because otherwise, when you try to reorganize the page, you make a lot of major blunders. For example, yesterday, the page contained this paragraph:

"Furthermore, Bison has Purge Signet which will remove all hexes and conditions from him. He won't use it just to remove crippled or bleeding, but will use it as often as the cooldown allows to remove blindness, weakness, burning, dazed, and/or poison. As such, if you're relying on kiting, it may be best to avoid using conditions other than crippled and bleeding, so that he doesn't use Purge Signet and thereby remove crippled."

That's really important information that the page needs to contain. A ranger or paragon who doesn't know that will probably die against M. Bison as a result. It's likewise important information for some assassin builds. But for most other builds, it simply doesn't matter. Someone who played through the mission several times as one class might not be aware of it. Someone who played through several times as several different classes, but not one of the ones that needs to know it, likewise might not realize that it matters.

As the page stands right now, however, that information is simply gone from the M. Bison section. It isn't rewritten. It's missing. The ranger section has a cryptic comment, "Keep Bison permanently crippled by avoiding poison and burning." But that makes no sense without knowing the information in the paragraph that is now deleted. The paragon section says, "Avoid Stunning Strike or Blazing Spear until just before blinding wears off, lest Bison use Purge Signet too soon." But that doesn't make sense as written, even to someone who knows what it's trying to refer to. The assassin section seems to try to refer to it, but is nonsense as written, and tells the player that he has to do things not allowed by game mechanics.

That is perhaps the biggest strategic blunder in today's attempted reorganization, but it is far from the only one. As such, I say that the page should be reverted for now. Quizzical 20:00, August 10, 2010 (UTC)

Holy crap, dude. 1800+ words? There's no way I'm reading that. Can't you ever make a point succinctly? —Dr Ishmael Diablo the chicken.gif 20:24, August 10, 2010 (UTC)
(edit conflict) Holy wall of text, you almost made more comments here than you added in your revert...
:O -- RandomTime 20:26, August 10, 2010 (UTC)
Almost? I beg to differ. Anyways, I read it all and must say you got a point. EM Signature.jpg ***EAGLEMUT*** TALK 20:35, August 10, 2010 (UTC)
To sum it up, Quizzical says that our edits have removed significant parts of the article and actually made it less helpful. EM Signature.jpg ***EAGLEMUT*** TALK 20:39, August 10, 2010 (UTC)
Well, yeah, I understand his point — and it only took me the first paragraph to figure it out. —Dr Ishmael Diablo the chicken.gif 20:42, August 10, 2010 (UTC)
True that, but we all know Quizzical likes to write A LOT. The second and third paragraphs are there just to convince those who aren't already by the end of first paragraph. EM Signature.jpg ***EAGLEMUT*** TALK 20:57, August 10, 2010 (UTC)
I'm not really sure why the re-wording and re-organization is so controversial. Ok, so some pieces of info were out-right removed or over-generalized. Just correct those; the smaller size helps everyone and with those fixes it should be fine. --JonTheMon 21:28, August 10, 2010 (UTC)
Trying to dig through and correct every important piece of information that was deleted or muddled would take hours. The end effect of all of that work wouldn't really be any better than reverting it, which takes seconds. Given a sufficiently bad starting point, it's often easier to toss the whole thing out and start from scratch. I've already done that once.
My basic point is, don't do a far-reaching reorganization of a complex page if you don't know what you're doing. As far as the length of my comments above, if you're not willing to take the time to read why the page had to be the way it was, then you're not going to be able to comment meaningfully on how it should or shouldn't be changed.
If some people won't read a page because of its length, that's fine. Documentation is written for the sake of people who read documentation. As I said above, if the issue is that it's a single page that is too long, then the solution is to split the page. There's a pretty natural 3-way split that we could do if you'd like to go that route. Quizzical 22:35, August 10, 2010 (UTC)
As it is now, the long version has 16 printed pages: 1 page contents, 3 pages first section, 5 pages second section, 7 pages third section. I don't think 16 pages is not too long for a guide (it would be for most other article types); it's better to have it on one page (maybe select what pages to print, if you're printing), than to have people skipping back and forth between tabs; and the last edit before the revert cut one (printed) page off the first and 2 pages off the second section, was that worth it?
Compromise suggestion: maybe the proponents of brevity and bullets could copy the "short" edit to Short guide to defeating Magni the Bison, link the guides to each other, and put up a poll for a few months (you can put a poll in a transcluded subpage to make the same data appear on both pages) to see which version our readers find more useful.
For a really short guide, go to gww:Guide to the Norn Fighting Tournament. ;-P --◄mendel► 09:07, August 11, 2010 (UTC)

(Reset indent)

There's an awful lot of text above. If I understand it correctly, there are three assumptions: (1) that the people making the recent edits (primarily me) don't understand what a "Guide to defeating Magni the Bison" is supposed to do; (2) that the current version accomplishes whatever that is; and that no one is qualified to revamp the article (not even the original author, since so much time has passed since he last tested). I strongly disagree.

On its own, brevity might not make things useful, but neither does simply adding more text. In my opinion, the current version of the article falls short in part because it hides its interesting information, often in length but also in its wording. To test that belief, I've spoken to a number of players who have tried to use the article to help them defeat MB and/or to resolve the issues that they were having; all eventually gave up and headed for a gimmick build from PvX or elsewhere.

Any of us are qualified to give attempt a rewrite of an article that has a revamp tag on it. (Of course, if the article is good enough as is, let's remove the tag.) With such a big article, there's no way to overhaul without risking big leaps and missing something critical. If I thought an important paragraph got lost in a major edit, I'd spend time trying to add the critical info back, in a way suited to the rewrite. If I couldn't do that, I'd post a note asking why that was removed and engage others in a discussion about how best to move the article forward.

For what it's worth: it was completely clear in my mind what the article was trying to do (nothing written above suggests I got that wrong). I thought the article could be rewritten to better accomplish its own goals; it might have all the facts, but I believe it can present them more accessibly to a greater number of readers. Again, I agree that I screwed up some important points, but that had more to do with my writing abilities, my management of copypasta, and my patience for rewrites and very little to do with my understanding of the goal/execution of the article.  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 16:58, August 11, 2010 (UTC)

Still a good idea to contruct the revamped version elsewhere until all most of the kinks are out. ;) (Please remember that we're trying to make the article better, not start a fight.) --◄mendel► 19:45, August 11, 2010 (UTC)
How many of those players read the article, and how many merely scrolled down to the build and copy/pasted it? PvX allows the latter by giving you a gimmick that doesn't require thought. This also means the player is still 'dumb'. They don't know how to beat the game, they just know that Spiritway owns face. --Vipermagi 19:48, August 11, 2010 (UTC)
Tennessee, the issue is not one of motives. Rather, it is one of competence, largely due to experience. It's transparently obvious what the page is trying to do. What's not so obvious is how to carry it out. For example, it's pretty obvious that this page is trying to explain how to beat Mallyx and the mobs that immediately precede him. But I've never fought Mallyx, so if I were to try to clean up the write-up, I'd probably just make a mess of it. I don't know what is important and what isn't, so I'd probably make some howlingly ridiculous blunders. The solution is for me to either fight Mallyx quite a bit and understand the fight before attempting to edit the page, or else to not make any non-trivial edits (as opposed to fixing typos) to the page.
This is a very, very difficult page to write well. There is not a single mission in the game where it is difficult to find a build that works well in easy mode without having peculiar gear requirements. Even in hard mode, the complexity of finding a good build never goes beyond, "here are a few useful skills that someone in the party should bring". While I haven't done them all, I expect that the same is true of every dungeon and vanquish in the game. It is certainly true of nearly every quest in the game, with only the exceptions of a few solo quests.
Even with the other solo quests, once you find something that works once, it is highly probable that it will work every single time. Here, a build that works once might well typically fail, as you merely got lucky in which early round opponents you drew. That's why I spent about a week on this quest alone, and beat it about a hundred times, before rewriting the page. I haven't put in that kind of work on any other quest, mission, or dungeon in the game, as it simply isn't necessary anywhere else.
I'm not saying that no one should ever edit the page. I am, however, saying that it's very important that you understand what you're doing before trying to carve it up. I'm also perhaps saying that there's no need to rewrite everything on the entire page at once; rather, it is best to do just a little bit at a time.
If you want to clean up the portion about one particular build, then try the quest using that particular build enough times that you can usually win, or else have reason to believe that the build doesn't work. If you cruise through the mission the first three or four times that you try it, maybe that's enough. If you fail sometimes, then maybe you have to try it quite a few more times to understand the subtleties. Once you understand how the particular build works, go ahead and mess with the write-up on that particular build. But don't try to completely rewrite the subsection on a build that you've never used or else you'll probably just make a mess. I'm pretty sure that that's exactly what happened yesterday.
If the problem is length, then the solution is to split the page. One natural split would be the stuff at the top on one page, the single class builds on a second page, and the other builds at the bottom on a third page. Maybe the top part could be further split or maybe not. The other builds at the bottom are the part that really needs to be cleaned up, as I suspect that a lot of them are only there because someone tried the quest and beat it once, nearly three years ago, and posted his build without having much of an idea of how often it works. As far as I know, no one has ever gone through that portion and tried to clean it up.
That would break the page into "how to make your own build" and "here are builds that others have made". Someone who just wants to make his own build wouldn't need to sift through the long list of pre-made builds. Someone who only wants to use a pre-made build could read only that one, without having to look through most of the rest of the page.
If the problem is that players couldn't find the information they need to beat the quest, then there are several possible causes. One is that they didn't really look, and this one is actually pretty likely. Another is that the information simply isn't there. A third is that the information is too terse to make sense of it. None of those can be fixed by removing the important information that the player is supposedly looking for; indeed, making the page more terse not only can't fix the latter two problems, but would be likely to cause them.
Don't be in too big of a hurry to praise the official wiki's short coverage without bothering to notice that it isn't really all that short. Neither is that short guide terribly useful. If I didn't know how to beat the quest and then read the official wiki, I still wouldn't know how to beat it. While this page is longer, someone who reads and understands the top part plus one good build will either understand how to beat the mission or at least be well on the right track with only a few kinks to work out.
The problem with your edit isn't merely that that one particular paragraph got chopped out. I cited that only as an example--and proof that you didn't understand what you were doing before attempting a re-write. You cited the "be bold" policy, but as the page you linked to says, you shouldn't be reckless. There were many other blunders scattered through the page, and trying to document them all would have made for a very, very long post--even by my standards. It's kind of like trying to proofread a paper written by someone else and finding ten typos on the first page alone. It's rather tempting to send it back without reading the rest of it. Quizzical 22:59, August 11, 2010 (UTC)
Quizzical, please get off the "length" argument - nobody is making it. (I linked the GWW guide as an example of how not to do it.)
TEF wrote, the current version of the article falls short in part because it hides its interesting information, often in length but also in its wording. That makes it a problem of focus, not of length. TEF has proven to be an editor who is very good with words and making himself understood. Quizzical is an editor who takes pains to know exactly what he is talking about. If you both could get these talents to combine by working together, we'd all win. If you don't want to do it on-wiki, send versions and comments back and forth by email? Or don't you want to do it at all, thinking your effort perfect? I didn't think you were that kind of person. --◄mendel► 00:13, August 12, 2010 (UTC)
Tennessee's original justification for the edit in question was "major revamp (primarily compacting, trying to return focus to general concepts instead of spelling out all details)". That sure sounds like it's a length issue to me. And it didn't do much to "return focus to general concepts", considering that it deleted most of the general concepts portion outright.
If it's not a length issue, then great. There's no need to chop out a lot of important details if length isn't the problem. I'm not taking exception to rewording concepts on the page, but to deleting them entirely, or sometimes rather, mutilating them beyond recognition so that it's not even the same underlying idea there anymore.
I'm not claiming that the page is perfect. Two of the single class builds aren't the same build that I originally posted (the ranger build is unambiguously better, while the monk build is more debateable), and there's a decent case for replacing a third (elementalist) by one that was extensively discussed on the talk page but never moved to the main page for some reason. I am, however, claiming that if you want to improve the page, making haphazard changes to things that you don't understand isn't the way to go about it.
That might sound like I'm accusing Tennessee of not understanding some portions of the page that he rewrote. And to a considerable degree, I am. But I say that because it's true, and I can back it up.
For example, look at the assassin build. It's relatively difficult to beat M. Bison with a pure assassin build. The basic thrust of the build is that you have to keep M. Bison blinded nearly all of the time in order to have any hope of winning. At the time, assassins only got three blinding skills (unseen fury has since been changed), all of which had a 20 second recharge. M. Bison has purge signet, also with a 20 second recharge, and will use it immediately if he is blinded and the skill is not on cooldown.
Ideally, you want M. Bison to purge blindness right as it was about to wear off anyway. That can be tricky to do, but if he's not blind when the skill comes off of cooldown, he'll use it to immediately purge blindness as soon as you hit him with a blinding skill. It's critical that smoke powder defense be the skill that he purges, as that is the one with the shortest duration of blindness. If you use temple strike, wait until that is about to wear off, and then use blinding powder to blind him again, you can keep M. Bison blind until smoke powder defense recharges. Timing your blinding skills properly is the whole key to the build, and if you screw it up, you're dead. For example, if you use blinding powder and M. Bison immediately purges it, you're probably about to die.
The page explained this (in fewer words) before Tennessee came through and rewrote it. After his rewrite, this explanation was reduced to a bullet point that said, "Use Smoke Powder Defense against melee opponents, which causes them to blind themselves. Bison will immediately purge, so follow up with Temple Strike and hit him with Blinding Powder. If you time it right, he'll be using Purge Signet just as blindness wears off, allowing you to repeat the sequence. If your timing is off, repeat from the beginning." That's way, way wrong. For starters, this strategy is for the M. Bison fight, not melee opponents in general. It doesn't mention waiting until the blindness from temple strike is about to wear off before using blinding powder, and if you don't wait, the blindness won't last long enough and you'll die. The last sentence of his bullet point is pure nonsense. The whole point of the explanation is that if your timing is off, you die. You can't simply repeat from the beginning, as that will require immediately using skills that are still on 10 seconds or so of cooldown. That's plenty of time for M. Bison to kill you. This is the sort of series of screw-ups that someone who has tried the build enough to understand it and know how to make it work just wouldn't do.
So can the assassin build section be improved upon? Probably. One obvious thing to try is replacing temple strike by unseen fury, which has a longer blinding duration, lower energy cost, and frees up an elite slot for use by some other elite. That could make a build clearly better for fighting M. Bison. You'd have to work around the loss of dazed if you go that route, and make sure you can still handle casters in earlier rounds. Someone willing to spend a few hours messing with it could probably come up with a build that would work better today. But it would take a fair bit of time testing the build to see how it works against various opponents, and that's a critical step that can't be skipped.
Though really, if you want to improve the page, a good place to start would be with the portion that is a complete mess: namely, the "other builds" section at the bottom. Quizzical 01:16, August 12, 2010 (UTC)
(1) Editor intent is (almost always) irrelevant to discussing or fixing content (if only because we can't know what someone else was thinking). It is sufficient to say an edit lost important information, lost focus, or sucked for some other reason...and that therefore, there was no choice but to revert. I wish Quizzical had stopped at that, but even now, there's still direct criticism of the writers rather than just the writing.
(2) I haven't argued that my edit was great. Given my history here, I would have hoped that good faith would have been assumed or that time had been taken to try to understand my motivation. Partly, that was my fault: (a) I did a particularly poor job of editing and (b) left a summary that was not reflective of my intent. I apologize for that. Had time been given to discuss the article with the community, one might have learned that I would have been happy to follow Quizzical's lead in a revamp rather than attempting this on my own.
I also agree with the criticism that I could have, as I have done elsewhere, posted a suggested revamp. This would have made it easier for the community to discuss the direction the article should take. I have two bad excuses: I started out intending to make minor (and, one hopes, uncontroversial) changes (hence the inaccurate summary) and then I ran out of time. I also apologize for this.
(3) Somehow, I have also failed above to make it clear that I'm not arguing about the revert; Quizzical did the right thing (calling my original attempt bad gives it too much credit). However, that doesn't change my belief that (1) a revamp is necessary and (2) any good writer can help (although, as noted, one must be far more careful with this article than with others).
The issue isn't about whether the builds work or not; it's about whether people can make use of them as written. People have told me they cannot; I would like to see that changed. So, howzabout we focus on improving the article so it's more useful to more people?
For example, Quiz's introduction above regarding assassins is much clearer above then the current version: the text could read: "You will die unless you keep him blinded at all times." (In fact, that's how the elementalist section is written.)
I also agree that the other builds is out of place. This article is a rare GWiki case of handing people very specific instructions and builds; let's keep the number small so that we can be sure that both the builds and the instructions are well tested. (If we want, we can also make room elsewhere for people to list their favorite builds, which might not suit everyone.)
I'm game to throw aside the last few days of meta-discussion and concentrate on where to go next. Of course, at this point, I'd rather offer critiques and let some other editor risk getting Meteor Showered.  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 05:08, August 13, 2010 (UTC)
One thing that I think is important is to try to do things one subsection at a time. If you try to do too much at once, you confuse the wiki's edit comparison tool, and it thinks you've basically deleted everything and the whole page is new. That's all right if a page is sufficiently useless that it needs to be started nearly from scratch, but not so good for editing pages that are already well developed. There were undoubtedly portions of edits in the last several days that had merit, but it was too hard to figure out what was changed and what was left alone.
One approach would be to scrap the "other builds" section as written entirely. In its place, put a PvE skills builds section, like what we did with Doppelganger. I don't think builds that rely on skills from two classes are particularly useful, as very few people will happen to use that particular combination of builds.
I could perhaps flesh out the top section more, rather than leaving each basic strategy as a mere bullet point. I'm guessing that if someone is having trouble beating M. Bison with a build on the page, the problem is most likely not understanding the basic strategy to be used.
Among the single class builds, the ranger, elementalist, mesmer, ritualist, dervish, and paragon builds work well. Entropy made an alternative elementalist build a while back that probably also works well; you can find it in the talk archives of this page if so inclined. The monk build is fine against M. Bison, but there may be room to improve on it against earlier opponents. The necromancer build works as written, though it cheats by including necrosis. It works just fine against M. Bison without that skill, but earlier opponents are the problem. I couldn't come up with a purely necromancer build able to spike down earlier opponents who aren't trying to kill you, but only to force a stalemate. The assassin build could probably be improved by using unseen fury in place of temple strike, and then adding some other elite, though what that would do to earlier opponents would be complicated. The warrior build can work, but is tricky, as if you rely purely on blocking, you're going to take a lot of damage. I don't see any other practical approach to a pure warrior build, though.
Razah is probably a lot harder now than when I made the single class builds. Spirits are stronger now, and only have 1/4 to 1/5 of the casting time of before. Quizzical 06:49, August 13, 2010 (UTC)
I think those of us posting recently probably agree that the end section needs an overhaul. Or probably better: delete and start from scratch. The first section(s) outlines the general strategy of being able to get to and defeat the Bison. The second offers specific, well-tested pure profession builds (with how-to instructions). (And, as noted, perhaps some professions need a skill or two stolen from elsewhere.)
What, if anything, should a third section offer? I think we can offer generalized techniques and/or builds that can be used by all/most professions. I would suggest, if it includes specific builds, that we try to limit the number. We should not include every build that works great for someone; we should include the small set that can work great for anyone. I would look at whether a build is especially effective, easy to explain, easily used by vets/novices, easily adapted by multiple professions, etc — the emphasis being especially.
BTW: I don't see a problem including Necrosis in the Necro build: it's functions as a PvE version of an attribute-less split skill and, consequently, the Necro build still requires thinking/playing necrotically. i.e. I hope that Quiz can enjoy the success of the build rather than kicking self for being slightly less pure than Ivory Snow.
Incidentally, it's not always sensible to edit articles section by section, especially longer ones. Often, changes need to span multiple areas, paragraphs, ideas, structure, etc. This article, should it ever receive an overhaul, might need an approach that breaks everything down and puts it back together. Admittedly, a sensible way to handle this is to publish version 2.0 on a temp page first. Admittedly, someone could be more careful about making sure that everything broken down found its way back (or at least received an honorable mention on the talk page). I should have done both; in my haste, I failed to do either. Again, my apologies.  —Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 08:55, August 16, 2010 (UTC)

Cleanup and Dervishes[edit source]

With the complete rework of Dervishes, they need a new build since blind is no longer maintainable. I'll try to get my Dervish around to doing that but it could take a while to get him a suitable elite. Any help with developing a build would be appreciated.

I've cut down the Other Builds section significantly, since many builds were redundant/nerfed by this point, and added a PvE-only skills section to avoid cluttering the section with small variant builds (and most notably to remove the need for various Ursan Blessing builds). Some consolidation could probably still stand to occur, but I wanted to at least start on this section before losing interest completely. I'm open to the idea of removing the Other Builds section entirely due to the lack of quality control we could reasonably perform, but I didn't want to do something that drastic straight away. Toraen talk 05:47, 7 May 2011 (UTC)

Well, right after the update, EDA was still viable (with dust cloak to handle the blind downtime), but now that's a bit less viable. I suppose a theoretical build would be:
Earth 12+1+1 Scythe 10 + 1 Myst 8
Ebon Dust Aura.jpg Dust Cloak.jpg Mirage Cloak.jpg Pious Assault.jpg Wearying Strike.jpg Rending Touch.jpg Mystic Regeneration.jpg Eternal Aura.jpg
So you layer block and blind and kill them with the other stuff. --JonTheMon 06:06, 7 May 2011 (UTC)
Even a warrior with max energy and a +15/-1 weapon can spiritspam the whole tournament. I know, because that's what I used, even before they buffed spiritspamming. Maybe worthwhile to note, too. Arnout aka The Emperors Angel 09:12, 7 May 2011 (UTC)
Isn't the gist to provide non-spiritspam builds for each profession/ --JonTheMon 20:38, 13 May 2011 (UTC)
yes that is indeed the idea.  — Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 23:28, 13 May 2011 (UTC)
Yeah, the basic idea is, here's how to beat the quest with what you happen to already have, rather than telling everyone to go buy a bunch of new skills. I give a longer answer in the first post under "Brevity versus usefulness" above. Quizzical 06:57, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
Ow, well sorry guys. Its just that most ppl will have those skills these days, just because you can do pretty anything with em. Arnout aka The Emperors Angel 17:44, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
EDA takes more effort to get than eotn pve skills for a lvl 10 dervish :\ 68.118.44.121 03:16, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Some people like to play more than one character. If you're playing multiple characters, then I think using exactly the same build on every single character is thoroughly insensible, as it defeats the point of the replay value that you get from different characters. Quizzical 04:03, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
This isn't a console game. The replay value is end game content with different roles, not doing the same quests over and over with inefficient builds. Some of you people are so stubborn. This wiki is a guide on how to do things on guildwars effectively if you really are that against meta then make your own builds. Spirit Spam works, period. Ursan works, period. Just put the simple any/x builds up and stop this nonsense. TLDR: Stop being prissy faggots.. inb4 go away rask ban -Rask 68.118.44.121 04:53, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
This isn't a meta wiki; there are plenty of sites that handle efficiency (e.g. Guru, e.g. PvX). What we offer is something that anyone can use, not just the theoretically best or most popular strategies.
I don't really care if Ursan works, it's b-o-r-i-n-g. I want to maximize my fun, not minimize the time spent grinding. And, erm, since we do want to offer something besides the meta, we did put up our own builds. (Or, more precisely, Quiz put up some heavily tested builds and strategies which everyone has helped edit and support.) Plus: replay value is in the eye of the beholder. You might be interested in the mild difference in the end-game; I'm more interested in seeing if I can earn rewards playing Eles as eles and rits as rits.  — Tennessee Ernie Ford (TEF) 07:09, 16 May 2011 (UTC)

What rewards? Ymlad is going to do the exact same thing on a warrior as it does on an ele, how you earn it isn't going to change that at all. You're clogging the page up and making it more confusing for INEXPERIENCED players. This isn't about meta, you need to think about the portion of the wiki that doesn't edit and stop assuming filling a page with an assload of garbage is ok. Quiz made a valid point that there are some things that need to be made clear. That doesn't mean listing a million variants that can work. If you REAAAALY want to get attention for making some souper cool ele build to kill magni then post it on something like Guide to defeating Magni the Bison/Elementalist builds. Instead of congesting this article and this talk page. Thank you for ignoring my point and have a shitty day. 68.118.44.121 09:16, 16 May 2011 (UTC)

Well, then, instead of complaining pitch in and make the wiki better. Edit the spirit spam artcile to have an accurate build or link to pvx (or both); make a page about the ursan build (is ursanway up to date?), and then, before the "single class builds" section, insert a "generic builds" section at the same level that tells the readers about them - those that are satisfied with that are hopefully smart enough to skip the rest of the page that you don't find useful, but people like TEF do. Doing that is going to work better than complaining - unless, of course, you'd rather complain a lot about the wiki being bad rather than make it better. --◄mendel► 10:01, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
Wow someone on the internet that doesn't have their head up their ass. Well played, good sir. I'll start compiling builds I guess. 68.118.44.121 01:34, 17 May 2011 (UTC)

Magni the Bison Build Listing[edit source]

K, got a basic template pushed. If you want to contribute a build then read the talk page and post under the appropriate profession in the correct format. I stated in the guide but I'll say it here too, keep your descriptions concise so the page doesn't get all congested. Once this has taken on a real form and has a decent amount of information I'll move it into the guide section and link it on this page. 68.118.44.121 01:53, 17 May 2011 (UTC)