#1 Esoteric Warriors [EW] vs #30 Rus Corp [RUS]
By Adam Sunstrom
The Team Builds
|Esoteric Warriors [EW]
||Rus Corp [RUS]
|W/E Hammer – Backbreaker, Shock
||W/E Sword – Charge, Shock
|W/E Axe – Eviscerate, Shock
||W/E Axe – Eviscerate, Shock
|Me/Mo – Energy Surge, Diversion
||E/Mo – Prodigy, Heal Party, Air
|Me/Mo – Energy Surge, Draw Conditions
||E/Mo – Prodigy, Heal Party, Air, Water
|Mo/Me – Mantra of Recall
||Mo/Me – Mantra of Recall
|Mo/Me – Mantra of Recall
||Mo/Me – Mantra of Recall
|Me/Nec – Mantra of Recall, Hexes
||R/Me – Crippling Shot, Apply Poison, Blackout
|E/Mo – Prodigy, Heal Party, Air, Water
||Me/Mo – Energy Surge
In this match, Esoteric Warriors ran a similar build to what they used in the playoffs against RenO, consisting of two Warrior/Elementalists using Shock, two Mesmer/Monks using Energy Surge, two Monk/Mesmers using Mantra of Recall, one Mesmer/Necromancer focused on Necro Hexes, and an Elementalist/Monk flag runner with Prodigy and Heal Party. The use of two Mesmer/Monks was their biggest build change from the playoffs, and it proved very effective.
Rus Corp brought two Warrior/Elementalists with Shock, two Elementalist/Monks with Heal Party, two Monk/Mesmers, one Mesmer/Monk and one Ranger/Mesmer with Crippling Shot and Apply Poison.
The game took place on Rus Corp's Guild Hall of choice, the Burning Isle.
As the gates opened, both teams headed straight for the flag stand, ignoring the Flame Cursed Sentinels. The teams seemed evenly matched at first, with no deaths taking place in the first five minutes. Neither team was able to secure a morale boost in the early part of the game. As the battle raged on, however, the Hexes and Energy Drains seemed to take their toll on Rus Corp's Monks. The team's total Health slowly crept downwards, while EW's Health remained full between RUS' damage spikes. Undoubtedly, a big factor in this was the fact that one of EW's Mesmer/Monks was equipped with Draw Conditions, severely hampering RUS' Ranger/Mesmer in his attempts to spread Conditions all over the EW team. Eventually, the degeneration reached a point where EW were able to take their first kill, dropping one of Rus Corp's Monks. The second Monk and an E/Mo soon followed, but RUS used Resurrection Signets to bring them back quickly.
The snowball effect of kills was in motion, though, and Rus Corp soon took another three deaths. They opted to retreat back to their base at around 7:30 minutes into the game. As they ran, they sent one Warrior in the opposite direction, to attack EW's base alone. EW answered by sending a Monk healer and their Elementalist/Monk flag runner after him. The Warrior killed one of EW's archer NPCs before they reached him, and then engaged in a war of attrition with the EW flag runner, sometimes chasing, sometimes retreating.
Meanwhile, at Rus Corp's home quarters, their dead players resurrected at the shrine. Esoteric Warriors quickly trapped RUS' Monks and killed them before they could reach the safety of their bodyguards. The Monks were quickly resurrected, and RUS engaged EW outside their NPC platform.
EW, seeing they were at a disadvantage without all of their Monks present, started pulling back slowly, while the Monk they had sent home to protect against the Warrior headed back towards the rest of the team. Rus Corp's harassing Warrior took advantage of this, and managed to kill EW's flag runner as he headed out toward the flag stand. The dead flag runner resurrected almost immediately at the shrine, and forced the Warrior to return the flag. The death had little effect, as Esoteric Warriors gained a morale boost soon after.
By now, the main action had moved back to the flag stand, and EW sent one of their Warriors home to deal with the problem. Rus Corp's solitary Warrior tried to survive for as long as he could with his Healing Signet and Charge, but EW's Water/Air flag runner hit him with Deep Freeze, and he could run no more.
With RUS' Warrior dead far inside the EW base, the battle at the flag stand was now a 7 on 8 fight, and EW soon regained the upper hand. Despite Rus Corp using Heal Party on two players, they couldn't sustain the damage EW shelled out. They soon suffered three more deaths and started running back towards their base. It was a chaotic retreat, with some walking through the lava and some going up and around. EW weren't slow on the uptake, and hacked down all but one player before they reached Rus Corp's base.
Seeing that there was over 30 seconds until the next even minute, Esoteric Warriors rushed straight into RUS' Guild Lord area and managed to take down both bodyguards and get out before the resurrection. At the 14-minute mark, Rus Corp was in a desperate situation with high death penalty, no bodyguards and EW at their gates. They chose to engage head-on rather than try to defend their archers.
As they did this, they sent the same Warrior that had split earlier towards the center with a flag. He immediately got the Air/Water Elementalist on his tail. Before walking through the lava, he stopped to use his Healing Signet, and accidentally dropped the flag. It wasn't until he was halfway through the lava that he realized this, and turned back. By that time it was too late though, as the EW Elementalist caught up with him and took him down with Lightning Strike and Orb.
The battle was surprisingly close, but EW inevitably came out on top again, killing most of the Rus Corp team and heading for the Guild Lord. As RUS resurrected at the 16 minute mark, their Lord had less than half of his health left, but their Monks managed to save him. The victory was short-lived though, as EW killed their team swiftly once more, and finally took the Guild Lord at 17:13 minutes into the game.
This match illustrates how much difference a small change can make for a team build. In the playoffs, Esoteric Warriors ran with two Elementalists and a Necromancer/Monk. This time, they had switched out one of the Elementalists for a Mesmer/Monk with Energy Surge and Draw Conditions, and used a Mesmer/Necromancer instead of a Necromancer/Monk for more sustainable mana. In their playoff games versus RenO, they were unable to get kills other than by spiking. Now they are able to keep the pressure up and drain the enemy Monks to win those long stalemates. With only two character changes, their build has taken on a whole new style of attack.
Adam has been playing Guild Wars since February 2004 when he joined the Alpha test, and has been interested in the competitive aspects of the game from the beginning. In the early Beta Weekend Events, he led his former clan, The Fianna, with success. He is currently playing with a top 16 guild on the ladder.