A Guide to Bleeding in Guild Wars 2
Bleeding is a condition that is not well understood. It stacks intensity, but does that mean if I apply a 10 second bleed and a 5 second bleed that I get 2 stacks of bleed for 10 seconds? Do I get 2 for 5 seconds? Do I get 2 for 5 seconds and then 1 for 5 seconds? Halp!
Bleeding is unique in that it stacks in intensity and tracks each application of bleed individually. This means that the number of bleeds you see on the boons and condition tracker is telling you how many applications are currently in effect and also how long before all of the bleeds have run their course.
Does that make bleeding a viable option to doing damage in PvP? To the Math-Fu!
Lets get some constants figured out.
First you are going to need to know how much bleeding does per “pulse” or tick.
Bleeding Condition Damage Formula:
0.5 * Level + 0.05 * Condition Damage per stack per second
Formula as it relates to sPvP:
40 + (Condition Damage / 20)
This is the amount of damage that someone will take every second per stack of bleeding.
Assuming you do want to focus on condition damage in PvP, here are your friends:
Rabid/Carrion Amulet: +798 Condition
Talents: +300 Condition
Rabid/Carrion Gem: +125 Condition
Malice Runes: +183 Condition
Total = 1406 or +70.3 Condition damage
Max Damage = 110.3
That is the upper cap of damage. It is more realistic if we go with a condition damage number that is a bit more reasonable—like 1200.
Assume ~1200 condition damage or 100 damage per bleed pulse.
Bleeding damage ignores damage reduction such as defense, toughness, and the protection boon. It also ignores damage enhancing conditions such as vulnerability.
The damage for bleeding does not change. Only its duration does.
You need to consider that condition damage does not live in a vacuum. People are going to want to remove conditions that kill them quickly. The skill of a player will ultimately affect these numbers, but for the sake of good timing, availability of actions that remove skills, and general insanity, lets say that your stack goes poof every 10 seconds.
Assume every 10 seconds you lose all stacks of your bleed.
We now have the basics required to do some number Crunching.
If Joe Warrior breaks out a Rifle and starts spamming auto attack, this is what you could expect if you don’t factor in Sigils, Runes, or Traits (don’t worry, we will get to those).
Case A: 135 ticks, 13500 damage from bleed
Wow. That’s a lot of damage! Actually, it isn’t. Thirty seconds is a long fight for someone focusing on damage. Even when you add in the base damage of the rifle, weighing in at about 350, the 30 shots come out to 10.5k. 24k damage over 30 seconds is enough to kill ‘most’ things when you factor in the entire health pool and one heal.
Case B: 175 ticks, 17500 damage from bleed
Fortunately that is our starting point. From here lets figure in Sigils, because the Sigil of Superior Earth makes a condition build a possibility. The Sigil of Superior Earth gives you a 60 percent chance of applying a stack of bleed (duration of 5s) on a crit.
Because crit is currently pretty easy to come by with a Rifle-based warrior and Fury, and I like the number, lets assume a 50/50 chance of crit. Together that means a 30% chance of a bleed per attack.
Assume a 30% chance of adding a 5s bleed each shot; every third attack bleeds.
Ok, well now we are getting somewhere. 17.5k damage from bleeding. 13.1k damage from just the rifle (half shots crit and do +50% damage). 30.6k damage in the end. Not bad. Can we do better?
Case C: 213 ticks, 21300 damage from bleed
For the polish we can add in traits. Since we are still on the Warrior, lets keep in mind the natural 33% chance to bleed on crit from the Arms tree.
Now I know some of you are going to immediately scream ‘Wait, there is also a +50% bleed duration!’ True. It does exist. However if you check the case studies so far—duration really isn’t your friend.
The big argument against condition builds is the very valid argument that ‘any skilled player is going to get rid of them’. They can. They will. What you can do is factor that in during build planning and that means you only need the +10% from 10 points in strength. Fractions in Damage Over Time conditions round up—meaning you get an extra second on every bleed. This is, effectively, all you need.
Assume a 16% chance of adding a 5s bleed each shot; every sixth attack bleeds.
Assume every bleed lasts 1s longer.
Now we are sitting at 21.3k damage in bleed and 13.1k from the rifle. 34.4k is the result now. In the end it is still a lot more than the 24k on the first example.
The real reason to capitalize on condition builds is not something as simple as spamming Rifle-1 all day. There are warrior sword abilities that give you multiple stacks at once, such as impale. There is a sword burst (Flurry) on a low cooldown(5) that can fill up the bleeding condition bar on a good run.
A player can have a maximum of 25 stacks of bleed on them at one time.
Consider Flurry. Your crit rate is significantly higher while bursting with a sword, but lets keep the constant of 50% from before.
At a level 3 burst you are striking 12 times. You apply 12 bleeds automatically. You crit 6 times (at 50%) and each crit has two 60% chances of applying a bleed (two Sigils of Superior Earth). This balances out to 7 extra bleeds at 5(6)s on top of 12 2(3)s bleeds.
You get ~3000 base damage from hitting 200 each with 6 basic crits.
You get 3600 from the 12 3s bleeds.
You get 4200 (potentially) from the 7 extra bleeds.
10.8k damage, 6.6k of it is up front in a few seconds.
A smart player will wait for this and wipe the condition at the end of the flurry. A smart condition player will also utilize some CC and make doing that a lot harder– isn’t their next move a given?
See you on the battlefield!