To continue the post last week, here is the second part of the Minion Classification which covers the two out of the remaining of the minion categories, Defenders and Ranged Strikers.
Also, I’m going to put up the same disclaimer to the post: The information here is actually quite ‘meh’ for the experienced/ seasoned player and raider. If you’re bored, do come back soon when I’ll get my Ruby Temple post up and going. Alternatively, you can check out the new site map, which organises all of my previous posts.
For the rest of the minion categories uncovered last week (which you can read here), below is the rest of my (refined) proposed list of minion sub-classes again for your reference, with some sub-classes altered to better fit the minion types.
- Heavy duty – High Armor/HP or skill which keeps them alive, but very slow
- Disablers – Comes with a Disable Skill and a teleport/dash skill
- Glass cannons – High Damage, Low HP/ Armor, usually immobile
- Teleporters – Teleports, High Damage, still with Low HP/ Armor
- Hit-and-Run – Prefer to attack from far, High dodge
- Chargers – Extremely fast, Great for swarming
Alright, before I start, I know there are tier 1-3 minions that fall within these categories. However, I’m only going to cover tier 3-5/6 minions here as the 1-3 usually can’t handle more than 2-3 hits before going down. To be fair to them, they’re definitely not going to match up with the stronger types so let’s leave them out of the equation for this classification post.
Also, looks like I’m going to split up the post to another segment as this one got way too long when I added all 3 of the remaining minion classes in. Hence, this post will cover Defenders and Ranged Strikers, while the last segment will do Melee Strikers and sum up with a conclusion instead.
TL;DR: All minions that cannot advance above tier 3 are left out for the sake of fairness of comparison
Fun fact: To recognise the tier 1-3 minions in defender and ranged striker classes, these are usually the most human-looking minions (eg. Bandits, Ashkens, Warmage, Spirits etc.). Minions which possess monster-like characteristics or look like a humanoid animal are most probably the stronger and higher tiered minions. If you’re probably confused by what I just said, you might want to take a look at the wikia.
These minion types are the ‘tanks’ of the stronghold: with high durability and/or HP or they possess a skill that keeps them from dying too quickly if they lack both (eg. Voror Knight’s Reflect Shield).
Defenders usually come equipped with a moderate damage output and moderate to low speed. They also have an equally moderate upkeep for each tier and hence, this makes them well sought after as not only a decent damage-soaker, but also a damage-dealer as well to add to the chaos when the faster minions are swarming the raider.
TL;DR: Some defenders sacrifice their damage output/durability for abilites, but all-in-all, they’re still effective at defending.
In the Defenders category, there are 2 main sub-classes: Heavy Duty and Disablers.
*Note: I’ve put a (ˆ) on certain minion names as I highly recommend these as universally good minions in building up your stronghold defences.
Damage Output: +++
Heavy Duty defenders justify the defender class in terms of their durability. Like the Heavy Weights of the Champion class, Heavy Duty types are slow but make up for it from their high HP and armor.
However, in terms of abilities, these defenders do not possess very fantastic skill sets and they are mainly suited as tanks. Despite their speed making them very susceptible to ranged attacks, they perform well in keeping raiders from moving around too much, functioning like a rigid obstacle. They are best located in smaller trap rooms such as Nettle Grove, Nightmare Pit or Valenthian Guardhouse, so they can catch up or block the opponent easily.
As a raider, I would usually recommend these to be killed last unless they happen to get in your way and you can finish them off easily (or unless there is an assassin or stronger champion in the same room).
TL;DR: Heavy Duty defenders are relatively slow tanks, and are naturally useful for soaking up damage.
Minions: Sentinel, Tormented*, Firegut Ogurin, Scaled Lurker
+ Tormented (high speed and goes into frenzy with increased damage output and speed when low on HP);
+ Scaled Lurker (gains speed and dodge chance when shell is removed)
*I would have placed Tormented under the Disablers if I did this post in the last update. But unfortunately, without its fear reflect skill, it now feels like a regular heavy duty type defender.
Damage Output: +++
Although weaker in durability and damage output, Disablers come equipped with a variety of skills and abilities to make raiding more difficult. First, like their name suggests, they have a special ‘disabling’ skill (eg. slow, knockdown, stun, armor shred) which puts raiders in a vulnerable spot, making it easy for other minions to swarm him/her or simply keeping the raider there in one location.
Additionally, certain (more exceptional) disablers (eg. Cicatrizer and Cardinal) have unique ally buff abilities (armor up and dodge up respectively) as well. These abilities are triggered passively when they are close by to other minions when they’re using their regular skills, thus, making them more useful than support minions altogether.
Although they are not fast, these often have some form of teleportation or dash skill to reach the raider much more easily and accompanied with a possible knockdown upon arrival to their new location. This allows them to keep up as long as they have the raider locked on as a target.
The pitfall of using these minions is that majority of them are not very durable and they rely upon their speed or abilities to keep them alive a bit longer. Hence, it’s necessary to pair them up with other faster minions, like melee strikers, to swarm and distract the raider while these guys do their jobs.
For raiders, do try to take out these minions quickly, especially if you notice that there are some that are hot on your trail. Practice against your ally’s/ guild mate’s stronghold to recognise their movesets (esp. how they disappear and reappear again) and the tell-tale signs of the occurrence. This would enable you to dodge-roll out of the way quickly once you know when or even where they show up, which makes for a chance for counter-attack.
TL;DR: Disabling defenders disable raiders and are relatively good at catching up with them as well.
Minions: Cicatrizerˆ, Cardinalˆ, Vapidus, Dark Sentinel, Baloth, Chocolate Filled Gargoyleˆ, Gift-taker, Kenashi Warrior, Voror Knightˆ
– Kenashi Warrior (generally slow, no dash/teleportation skill and only useful for a very occasional stun skill);
+ Voror Knight (high durability from its reflect shield, high damage output for its AOE skill, strategy guide here)
Being the ‘archer’ class of minions, metaphorically, Ranged Strikers attack hard from a distance with paper thin defences.
As I’ll probably repeat several times after this paragraph, it is vital to take out Ranged Strikers as soon as possible due to their high damage output. Additionally, if left alone for too long, these minions will unleash their ‘special skill’ which results in even higher damage on the raiding player.
Fortunately (or Unfortunately depending on perspective), this class is comparatively weaker in terms of durability than to other classes (even less than melee strikers) and have standard upkeep which is higher than the other 2 classes (ie. melee strikers and defenders), making them less worthwhile if the raider takes them out in the first few seconds of the match. All these add up to possible reasons as to why they are avoided in strongholds for higher league tiers or even avoided being evolved to T6.
Generally, Ranged Strikers are weak to ranged users as they can be taken out easily from a distance. Melee users experience a bit more challenge when dealing with them, as they will have to run over to physically attack them, making the raider susceptible to swarming during that process.
TL;DR: Ranged strikers have high damage output, but are mostly immobile except for Teleporters and have high upkeep as well. Beware of ‘special attack’ if left unattended,
In the Ranged Strikers category, there are 2 main sub-classes: Glass Cannons and Teleporters.
Damage Output: +++++
Glass Cannon minions are a weaker variant in the class of Ranged Strikers. Inherently, their lack of speed and HP/armor make them an easy target for raiders. Although this is compensated with their higher than average damage output, Glass cannons might not be worthwhile for their high upkeep.
Placing Glass Cannons in strongholds is a tricky feat as one can only hope that the other minions distract the raider long enough for them to forget that there’s some form of artillery bombardment in the distance…which is to say, isn’t going to last very long. A suggestion would be to keep them within ‘blind zones’ of a stronghold so raiders aren’t aware of their presence until they start receiving fire.
The good thing is that these benefit most from the ally buff auras from Valenthian Stronghold and Ruby Temple. By placing them at the ‘buffing zones‘, the fact that they usually don’t move around much means that the raider has to deal with taking out the ‘buffing turret‘ first before removing them.
Nonetheless, as a raider, it is imperative to take down these minions right after finishing off the more important support types (eg. Druid, Gelid Voror) to maintain enough HP to last through the rest of the raid. If left unchecked, these minions (esp. those strong against your armor’s element) can shave off an unhealthy dose of your life.
TL;DR: Glass cannons are sitting ducks with high damage output. Might not be worthwhile for their upkeep.
Minions: Waerdian, Tortured, Blighter, Pumpkin Fiend
Damage Output: +++++
Teleporters are like the Glass Cannon subclass, but with an added ability to vanish at will or when they are aware that they are being targeted by the raider. This bestows them with a slightly higher perceived durability though they can still be taken down easily once you are able to anticipate when and where they will re-emerge (which is usually not very far off).
They are more useful in damage dealing strongholds (eg. Mine Layer, Nettle Grove, Nightmare Pit, Ashkardian Crypt) as they teleport around the room, making raiders chase them around the room and soak up whatever the trap room dishes out to them.
If you spot one of these in a trap room during your raid which are opposite of your element, do make a mental note to take them out quickly and be prepared to chase them around the room to do so. You’ll probably lose less HP going through all the traps than getting hit by their ‘special attack’.
TL;DR: Teleporters vanish and emerge quickly, making raiders chase them constantly.
Minions: Overseer, Prophetˆ, Scepterˆ, Stormtooth Wolf, Stormtooth Wolf Primeˆ, Emberstrike Conjurer, Duergar Incinerator, Yuletide Miscreant
+ Duergar Incinerator (does not die immediately on 0 HP and gets healed back to life in Ruby temple)
+ Stormtooth Prime (extremely fast and able to execute its attacks in rapid succession, resulting in continuous bursts of invulnerability)
Do look forward to next week’s post. Hopefully, I wouldn’t have too much to modify since the update (and potentially SH2.0) is being released soon.
Alright, back to Guild Wars!