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Engineer or Ranger for PVE


Ard Tiarna na Cu
GW2: scott.7601

Posted On: 05/07/2013 at 02:21 PM

I've gotten my Warrior and Guarden to a place buildwise and armorwise that I like.  I would like to get a third there but i'm torn between the ranger and engineer.  I've heard good and bad about both and they both seem pretty lacking compared to other professions.


So my question is, which do you prefer between Ranger and Engineer for solo PVE and maybe throw out a build if you have a good one?  I really only use my warrior and guardian for dungeons so that's not really an issue.  I just want to be able to solo any area in PVE.

(side-note: both characters are level 80)


Thanks for the input and guidance, it's much appreciated!!

» Edited on: 2013-05-07 15:40:29

» Edited on: 2013-05-07 17:52:28


Member Response:


Laoch na Faolchu
GW2: Kalla.4290 ESO: @Kalla

Replied On: 05/07/2013 at 03:13 PM

I have no experience with Engineer, although I have heard that it is a lot like Mesmer in that you need to level up a bit and get some abilities and kits before it really gets amazing.

Ranger is one of the best solo pve classes. Get yourself a polar bear from Hoelbrek and a Brown Bear from Kessex Hills (or the character creation) and they can tank anything below Champion designation with relative ease(with two of them if your bear dies you can just switch out to another bear and have another tank). I like to use shortbow with my bear and just machine gun individuals down, axe and warhorn/torch are great for up to three enemies and I bet Greatsword is also pretty good now (haven't tried it since the recent patch). One thing I have noticed is that Risen seem to ignore my pet completely I don't know why but beware fighting Risen, the pet tank just doesn't seem to draw them.

I think my Ranger survives as well or better than my Guardian in PvE.

Here is a list of all the ranger pet locations for anyone interested

Also, here is a high survivability build SuperheroGeorge posted here a while back

I don't use it myself since my Ranger is what I use for gathering mostly.

» Edited on: 2013-05-07 15:29:22


Laoch na Iompróidh
GW2: Doreth.8574 ESO: @Doreth

Replied On: 05/07/2013 at 04:31 PM

true the engineer is a bit squishy at first, but I can easily say by lvl 15 u can power through pretty much anything.... I ran a flamethrower build with either a riffle or a pistol shield.... I lvled a ranger all they way up to 70 and for myself I find the play style very boring and i'm having a hard time pushing him to 80... but I would be ready to lvl another engy to 80 any day

"My spear  may puncture my enemies hearts, the battalion that follows my spear will take all hope from it"


Laoch na Faolchu
GW2: Kalla.4290 ESO: @Kalla

Replied On: 05/07/2013 at 04:36 PM

Yea, compared to other classes the Ranger does get a bit boring after a while, and I don't really use my ranger for much other than gathering anymore, but for gathering solo anywhere in Tyria it is one of the safest to use.

I have seen pistol/shield engineers in dungeons and usually they are the last ones to go down (if they ever do), so I would imagine they would be pretty good for running around solo as well.

» Edited on: 2013-05-07 16:37:15


GW2: imagetaker.6807 ESO: @Morigana99

Replied On: 05/07/2013 at 05:13 PM

I will tell you that the Ranger is easier to level than the Engy. I will also tell you that the Engy is my favorite to play - based on the multitude of options they have from the kits. Between the Ranger and the engy I don't find a big difference in what they can handle in PvE once they have leveled up.

The engy hits a good stride once they hit 30 and can get the supply crate as an elite - it makes a big difference in fighting Vets and Champs. If you use dual pistols on the engy there isn't a huge problem leveling especially if you are any good at kiting and dodging. From personal exp forget turrets and concentrate on using bombs, grenades, elixir gun and flame thrower when available you get enough skill points - also tool kit. I find it easier to kite melee mobs using grenades and bombs and sticking like glue to ranged mobs with tool kit and bombs - and using your pistols when cool downs are off. I personally find it much more intriguing to play engy - I am biased though - I love my engy.

Because I do a lot of moving in PvE - as well as WvWvW I don't use turrets - even the healing turret. As soon as I had points available I got the med kit. It places a really good heal on your tool belt and swapping to it gives you bandages that heal for a small amount (the best heal is on the tool belt) but you also get a condition remover and a booster pack for speed and increase to crit chance.

Taking elixir gun gives you another heal on your tool belt and an AE heal (with just a 20 sec cooldown) as well as some various damage shots. Flame thrower is pretty good to great close range AE damage. (I'm trait specced for extra burns and 15% extra damage in Flame thrower/ Elixir gun so I do really good damage with these) Grenades good ranged AE - bombs good AE at your feet.

Ranger - like I said is probably easier to level early on especially using a bear or other tank pet. Using traps or poison on your attacks is really powerful. You might not think about it or notice it - but using a poison on your AE arrow attacks or your bouncing axe really puts a hurt on PvE mobs. Dodge rolling into mobs and placing a flame trap and then dodge rolling out is also a very effective maneuver. The ranger can be very powerful in PvE. From my point of view the regen heal - Troll Ungent - is the best ( I traited my ranger in "Regens last 33% longer" just remember to use it early and often in fights if you go that route.

The ranger also has a lot of flexibility and can go melee to ranged. Many rangers use two bows - short and long while I prefer bow (and use short a lot in PvE) and Axe with either torch or warhorn as the switch off. If you prepare based on your foe(s) it is hard to go wrong - although it is totally possible. Learning to switch out pets as soon as the one is dead is HUGE - and needs to be done - your pet is a dot and needs to be active at all times.

I have played both to 80 and I am far better versed on the Engy than the Ranger - mainly because I play the engy about 3x more. I chose the Engy as my fav because of their complexity and versatility... they are much more complex to play and have fun with because you really do have to change out your kits based on the situation to succeed the more difficult encounters. (As others have mentions and for me, too - Ranger compared to Engy is boring after a while). This means you have to learn 8 weapons - really - besides learning dual pistols, rifle, pistol/shield - you also have Bombs, grenades, elixir gun, flame thrower, and tool kit which change into your weapons they are not just a slot skill - then you have all the other slot skills. People who complain the Engy needs weapon swap just don't comprehend they have more available weapon combinations than most classes. My standard is to run with dual pistols, elixir gun, flame thrower, and bombs slotted along with med kit and supply crate. That gives me 4 weapon combinations instantly ready for use.

Anyway - sorry - I ramble...

» Edited on: 2013-05-07 17:19:51

"I walk in dreams and speak with ancient spirits. I see the good and evil as well as the storm of turmoil that the universe creates.  This is my fate, what I do with this knowledge - that is my destiny." Morigana Crone of Dreams

"I reach into souls and draw out their spirits... they still dance with me on the fields of battle. Don't let my ghosts haunt you." Morigana Ghostdancer


Freiceadan na Faolchu
GW2: Jayvenpup.4978

Replied On: 05/07/2013 at 07:56 PM

Funnily this is just the topic I told Marrra that I needed to work out. These are my two lowbies and I want to play a lower level toon as most of mine are level 80 now. Engineer I want to love and I do like the Flamethrower/Elixir Gun, but want to try something else I think. All I know is I won't touch grenades, my RSI is bad enough as is and my poor Razer Naga and thumb doesn't like me for that :P

Thanks for the food for thought, rambling can be good for that :D

Ex-Guild Wars 2 (GSCH Chapter), Ex-Final Fantasy XIV (Echoes, Saighdear)

Current: Friendly Neighbourhood Window Shopper


GW2: imagetaker.6807 ESO: @Morigana99

Replied On: 05/07/2013 at 11:00 PM

FYI... I did have grenades traited but found them boring and all of those projectiles flying through the air made me a huge target - the same way I look for them and occasionally find an engy standing off in the distance slinging them. Now it is true that the flame thrower makes me a big target also, but I find it much easier to move while using it and it does massive damage to anyone who stands in front of me. It is my favorite defense mechanic.

Now I only equip grenades for defense when we are sieged up and for tower taking in WvWvW. I rarely use them at all in PvE. I would rather run in using flame thrower - drop some napalm - switch to bombs and drop them all - then dodge roll out (or switch to elixir gun and use the acid shot which kicks me back out) switch to pistols and plug away - back to elixir gun and drop a heal potion if needed - and then clean up with flame thrower. If it is a real nasty fight, I drop supply crate into the middle of the mobs before I charge in. IT IS MASSIVE FUN!!! :)

If you want to have some silly fun... get the mob low on health - drop "Big-old-Bomb" and when the mob goes flying through the air, try and kill them in flight with your pistol so they are dead before they hit the ground. It is an absolutely awesome feeling!

PS. I am an avid shooting enthusiast and a Western Movie nut this it is probably why I like the engy so much with dual pistols.

» Edited on: 2013-05-07 23:04:04

"I walk in dreams and speak with ancient spirits. I see the good and evil as well as the storm of turmoil that the universe creates.  This is my fate, what I do with this knowledge - that is my destiny." Morigana Crone of Dreams

"I reach into souls and draw out their spirits... they still dance with me on the fields of battle. Don't let my ghosts haunt you." Morigana Ghostdancer


GW2: Wreknar.5076 ESO: @Ignis_Temper

Replied On: 05/08/2013 at 09:53 AM

If you ever plan to participate in WvW with your new character know that with the engineer Grenades will absolutely be your best friend. They are the go to kit during sieges, awesome for bombing a long hallway during Lord Room last line defenses, and rock even without traits into them.

I would suggest rolling an engineer drop into the sPvP lobby and try using the grenade kit while running around. If it gets too frustrating, then you might be better served on the Ranger, but I would recommend at least toying with both in sPvP lobby before settling on a decision.

You're absolutely spot on though that both classes are very entertaining to play. I was faced with the same decision a few weeks ago, and while I don't regret choosing the engineer over the ranger, there are some very real trade offs.


Ard Tiarna na Cu
GW2: scott.7601

Replied On: 05/08/2013 at 01:57 PM

I do really enjoy grenades but not being able to auto-cast is really really annoying. I think at this point I'm leaning more towards a bomb/Elixir gun or flame thrower engineer; just need to find or make a good build for it.

» Edited on: 2013-05-08 15:27:20


GW2: Garyc.8961 ESO: @garyc

Replied On: 05/08/2013 at 07:08 PM

Have to agree with what's already been said. Ranger's Longbow + Polar Bear tank = easy leveling anything solo. I loved the Longbow so much, I never bothered with an alternate weapon until I hit 80. I PVE solo'd all the way to 80, including my story line. My Ranger is Norn, and yes, I'm the one who says "Good Norning" in guild chat.

However, my Engineer is a leveling fiend too. I did not do flamethrower spec. Instead I am pistols. 30 in firearms, 30 in alchemy, and 10 in Tools. With 2 turrets up, soloing is great. My ranger is Charr, so Warband? is also a nice racial ability to get extra help in a bind.

For me, it was a tough decision too. So I leveled up both. :)


Laoch na Cu
GW2: Sekkerhund.3790 ESO: @Sekkerhund

Replied On: 05/09/2013 at 02:21 AM

Ranger... well I did almost all of Tabitha's leveling in WvW and her current build is a custom bunker build that is soooo far removed from a normal ranger build, that I can't accurately compare her to other rangers.

Engi is the most fun, mine is 23 now. I use pistols and turrets on her. Oddly enough, she is leveling in PVE, since I'm burned out on WvW, but she seems to do just fine.


Ard Tiarna na Fhiaigh
GW2: Osu.6307 ESO: @Osu1

Replied On: 05/10/2013 at 08:24 AM

I have most of my GW2 experience on ranger and engi. I love them both but seem to have more fun with the ranger atm. Rangers level faster imo because you can go full berserker on gear and have your pet take all the damage. I died a lot more leveling the engi but it was my first toon and first time playing GW so had a lot to learn.

If you just want survivability, bunker rangers (google it) are really hard to kill. I mostly play wvw so put more emphasis on support than pure survivability. Currently I really like the bow specialty/spirit build with 30 points in nature magic and the rest in 30 power and 10 crit. For wvw having the range bonus on bows is incredible. I have hit lots of enemies on walls who I am sure thought they were out of reach. I can dish out some really nice damage picking out a target in the back of the enemy zerg and watch my arrows pierce 3-4 enemies on their way to the target, and at the same time my 4 spirits are putting buffs and heals on everyone around me. Only drawback is ranger can get boring and repetitive.

Engi's are a lot of fun but harder to play. You have to get really good at learning when to switch kits and use what ability. However, those kits give great versatility. Engi's are awesome for keep/tower assault and defense. Grenade kit + mortar can clear a wall really fast.


Ard Tiarna na Cu
GW2: scott.7601

Replied On: 05/11/2013 at 10:35 AM

I did end up going with the engineer, I always seem to get bored with my ranger and the monotony of the shortbow. So far i'm loving the below build|a.1g.h1b.a.1g.h2||1g.79.1g.79.1g.77.1g.77.1g.7d.1g.7d|411.d1f.2s.e13.1g.67.2s.e13.1g.67.1g.67|a5.u58b.0.u27a.0|1.7|2c.2w.2v.2i.0|e


GW2: Bravedecus.5896 ESO: @Bravedecus

Replied On: 05/28/2013 at 02:55 PM

Definitely prefer the Eng over the Ranger. Maybe it's because I'm tired of years of using bows.

Healing bombs and elixer gun is a great way to go, especially for dungeons.

Switch bombs to grenades for WvW. Keep hitting them with cripple, poison, etc from a good range and you can really rack up the badges.

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