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Let me start by saying, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” That being said, let me also say “Variety is the spice of life.” There are hundreds of zones in Guild Wars to vanquish and to undertake a task such as Legendary Vanquisher, one must have a plan. I’ve blogged about vanquishing before and there are many other blogs devoted to the subject (e.g., A Tyrian Odyssey), but I haven’t blogged about it in a while and according to my year in review, that’s what people are reading about.

Now, about variety. Sabway, Discordway, Spiritway, and all of the other team builds ending in -way (see here for all the “great” vetted team builds on PvX wiki) work well. Many of them will allow you to breeze through the majority of areas in hard mode and offer a “let the hero do the work for you” style of play. This is fantastic if you’re going to vanquish the world. In fact, I’ve ctrl+c, spacebar’d my way through gobs of areas while watching reruns of Scrubs and How I Met Your Mother. It works too well and, frankly, makes for boring game play.

I don’t play games to be bored.

So, I decided to do something nice with the remaining areas. I have less than 20 and they’re all in Tyria. I finished the Shiverpeaks over Christmas break, because who could pass up all that snow? What remains are about half-a-dozen areas or so in each of Kryta, Maguuma, and the Crystal Desert. Why not have some fun with it?

I intend to use the same group of 3 heroes for the remainder of Kryta (more on that in a moment). As for the dozen or so zones remaining in Maguuma and the desert collectively, I think I’m going to work my way through my heroes and try new things. I have many of my heroes equipped, but not all of them. I foresee this costing me a small fortune in runes and weapon mods (yes, I know I can recycle to keep the costs down). I’ll post about them as I vanquish with them.

As for Kryta, I have the Shining Blade Dream Team. I am a N/X running my traditional SS PvE build consisting of Spiteful Spirit, Pain Inverter, EV Assassin, EV Sniper, Enfeebling Blood, Weaken Armor, Barbs, & Mark of Pain. I am also decked out in my Shining Blade Uniform.

Left to Right: Belzan, Livia, Gwen, Kieran Thackeray

For my heroes, I tried to cover my bases. Livia has always been my N/Rt, but for this case I specced her as a bomber/prot hybrid (Jagged Bones, Bone Minions, Death Nova, Masochism, Reversal of Fortune, Prot. Spirit, Aegis, & Renew Life).

Gwennie has always been my interrupter, and that hasn’t really changed. I’m essentially running a Keystone Mesmer build with her and have enjoyed running signet heavy builds in the past on my own mesmer (though I haven’t played her since this build became popular). Her exact build is Keystone Sig, Sig of Clumsiness, Unatural Sig, Sig of Disruption, Sig of Distraction, Mantra of Inscriptions, Symbolic Celerity, and Sig of Return. I am a big fan of Symbolic Celerity and love the guilty pleasure that comes from maxing out my Fast Casting and getting the bonus to my Sig of Return.

As for Keiran (hooray for a new hero!!!), I saw no sense in putting a spear in his hand, so he will forever be a P/R. I’m running a modified Motigon build that emphasizes using a shortbow and zealous string to recoup some of the energy loss from the build. His skillbar is as follows: Volley, “Go For The Eyes!”, Song of Restoration, Aria of Resto, Ballad of Resto, Aria of Zeal, Aggressive Refrain, & Signet of Return.

The way I see it, I can’t split up Gwennie and Keiran. They’re married afterall. Livia is a member of the Shining Blade and I’m vanquishing in Kryta. Based on my Shining Blade logic, however, I should prolly switch Gwen out for Hayda and run a Command Hero build. How funny would it be that I’d be running 2 necroes and 2 paragons though?

So that’s that. I’m not sure what order I’ll vanquish in, but I’ll be sure to blog about it. I’ll post my builds and (hopefully) my success stories. I am happy to indulge any hero combination ideas. I plan to take triplets out for some of the zones (i.e., all 3 warriors, all 3 rangers, monks, eles, dervs, and paras). In fact, I think I might make it my initial goal to find a successful team build for each trio of like-professioned heroes (clearly that has been done to death, pun intended, with necroes). To be continued…