|Guild versus Guild positions|
|Basics • Frontline • Midline • Backline • Flag Runner • GvG Splits and Ganks|
A Guild versus Guild backline consists of 2-3 characters with builds designed around protecting and healing the party. The most common backline consists of a healing-based monk and a prot-based monk, both speccing into another attribute protection vs melee. However, many other combinations, such as two protection monks, or ritualists, even N/Rt healers in some builds are also effective.
Types of Backliners
Monks are the most common form of backliners, as they offer a huge amount of versitility within their own attributes, allowing them to run a secondary profession for energy management or self-survivability. The standard backline in a Guild versus Guild team is one of two monks, usually a Restore Condition and a Word of Healing or Healing Burst monk.
Although rarely used, Ritualists can also make effective backline characters, usually utilising Weapon of Remedy or Expel Hexes as their elite. Ritualists have extremely poweful healing skills, such as Spirit Light, Spirit Transfer and Mend Body and Soul, but they are lacking in the protective skills that Monks have, such as Reversal of Fortune and Spirit Bond, which makes them less desirable in a balanced backline. These are most often seen in NR/Tranq teams.
This type of backline build takes advantage of the Necromancers primary attribute, Soul Reaping, and the powerful heals found within a Ritualists Restoration Magic attribute to form a powerful healer with extremely strong energy management. This form of backliner is normally found in gimmicky Heroes' Ascent teams such as Sway or Thumpway, or in NR/Tranq teams, which exploit Nature's Renewal and Tranquility to cause indirect pressure. Although these make for strong healers, they aren't as versitile as Monks or primary Ritualists, as they can't deal with hexes, and have little in the way of protective spells.
Building A Backline
Basic Skill Choices
When building your own backline, you need to take several things into consideration to ensure that it is effective and versitile. There are:
- Hex removal (normally Holy Veil, Deny Hexes or Remove Hex).
- Condition removal. For this, if you are running monks, you have a choice of running Restore Condition on one monk and Mend Condition or Draw Conditions on the other or Mending Touch on the monk with RC, or two copies of either Dismiss Condition or Mend Condition. If running ritualists with spirits, use Mend Body and Soul, or with weapon spells, you can use Wielder's Remedy.
- A party wide heal (Light of Deliverance or Heal Party, rarely Protective Was Kaolai. Note that although since the introduction of Light of Deliverance it is standard to run the party wide heal in the backline, Heal Party elementalists are still sometimes used in the midline or as a runner. Ether Prodigy or Mind Blast is used to power this, for more information see GvG Flag Runner.
- Some single target heals. A standard backline will generally take Gift of Health and Signet of Rejuvenation or Dwayna's Kiss for this. A ritualist backline would take Spirit Light.
- A spike heal, usually in the form of Infuse Health, although ritualists can take Spirit Transfer instead. Note that although you do not need a spike heal, it is highly recommend to bring one, as without one your backline needs to prot perfectly.
- Some 'small' protective spells, such as Reversal of Fortune, which should always be run as long as you are running monks, Guardian and Shielding Hands. Although ritualists aren't as strong as monks in this department, they do have Weapon of Warding, Weapon of Shadow, Vengeful Weapon and Weapon of Remedy.
- Some 'big' protective spells, which are almost always Spirit Bond and Protective Spirit, with one on each monk. Shield of Deflection is also an extremely popular replacement for Restore Condition as an elite choice. Ritualists don't really have any good 'big' protective spells to use, as they are more heal focused.
- Self-defence skills. There are many too many choices for this to list, but the most popular are Return, Dark Escape, Shield Bash and Disciplined Stance. One of these, usually Return should be on the monk or ritualist carrying Infuse Health or Spirit Transfer respectively, and is an optional skill choice on the other monk.
Building A More Effective Backline: Build Synergy
For a backline to be at its most effective, it must consist of two builds that synergise well together. Examples of this are not taking two copies of the same powerful enchantment that will cancel each other out, but different ones, or having elite skills that work well together, such as Word of Healing or Restore Condition. To get a better idea of how to build an effective backline, let's look at a standard dual monk backline in a balanced build.
As you can see, this backline has a clear definition of which monk is the main protter and which monk is the main healer. The entire build is based around reducing taken damage to a lower amount, while healing the damage that is taken in the most energy efficient manner possible.
While Restore Condition is the primary condition removal skill, Draw Conditions works as an emergency spell when the RC suffers from dangerous conditions or a fast remove is needed on other characters. Some like to run Draw Conditions on a midline character in which case the WoH would usually run Dismiss Condition.
However, despite being designed to work together, each build can also operate reasonably well by itself, which is the sign of an effective backline.