Tips, Tricks, and Techniques
Perhaps one of the best tricks in this map is false knocking. Essentially you start lightly attacking the enemy door using a very long ranged attack, typically done if you have the enemy’s Natural Control Point. This will immediately alert the enemy team. At best it will divert a number of enemy players to return to the base doors to find no attackers present giving your team an advantage throughout the map. At worst it will create an extremely annoying scenario where the announcer is constantly notifying them they’re base is under attack.
The Sanctum’s large Control Point area often attracts a lot of fighting in the center. Remember that it only takes one person to block a capture leaving the rest of your team, if they are ranged, to engage the enemy from the safety of the tiered areas located around the Sanctum. These areas not only provide a barrier to melee attacks but also a number of pillars that provide Line of Sight.
The shelter areas around the Waterfall and the Quarry are within 1200 units of the Control Point allowing long range attacks. This is a great spot to set up gun or explosive turrets or stick an Elementalist since they are a lot like a turret.
There are sally gates located near both base doors which allows friendly only entry into the base. Instead of engaging the enemy on the ground, particularly if you are outnumbered, you can enter the base and get on top of the catwalk overlooking the door and attack them from the high ground.
Profession Specific Tips
Warriors have a unique disadvantage in this map. Many warriors favor the use of a Greatsword Hundred Blades which does massive damage, but only in a frontal cone AoE. This works fine in normal sized Control Points where you can more easily force people into your damage or out of the Control Point you are standing in. Be warned, I have seen any number of Warriors waste that skill inside the much larger Sanctum where players can more easily dodge it.
Where Warriors do shine is their high mobility throughout the map. A sword/warhorn can get you end to end of the map in relatively short time while allowing you to maintain high damage output. Your ranged attacks with the short bow is actually very beneficial to lay down AoE burning damage before you rush in to do some melee attacks since players tend to clump in the center of the Sanctum.
You little overpowered buggers are in for a rude awakening, I’m kidding of course, you aren’t little. Your knockbacks are less effective throughout the map. On the normal size Control Points there are barriers which can prevent players from being knocked out of the area. On the Sanctum the area is so large it becomes excruciatingly difficult to knock people out of this area. However, by working in conjunction with another Guardian you can stagger your knockbacks, particularly Shield of Absorption, to knock players out of the center.
Your abilities to block enemy players from entering a point can give you valuable seconds to capture a point. Often there are a number of routes into the Control Point, but they are accessible by choke points which you can control with skills like Line of Warding.
The Ranger Swoop ability from the Greatsword is actually perfect for the Ranger in this map. Since there are a number of tiered levels in this map you can traverse a lot of ground rapidly while skipping over the pit of battle below.
The Thief is perhaps one of the best “roamers” or scouts. With your speed, stealth, and flexibility in handling many different scenarios you can be a force that can quickly swing the tide of any engagement on the map. Make use of the terrain to favor your ranged abilities and allow you to fall back quickly if the situation goes south. Among the best places to snipe from are the tiered levels surrounding the sanctum, which also allow you to rapidly mobilize or get eyes on other control points. Finally, as a roamer you are also well suited to lend a hand if your team goes for the Guild Lord. Make liberal use of your crowd control abilities to lower the damage the Guild Lord puts out, which isn’t much but every bit cuts down on the time to kill them.
Oh Engineers, how you boggle my mind with your abilities. One of the more difficult aspects of this map is turret placement. Since the Waterfall and the Quarry are raised points your turrets can have trouble attacking enemies on the elevated terrain because of LoS. If you place them on the points you risk them getting quickly taken out by AoE attacks because of the small real estate you have available to you. You could of course whip out your handy wrench but then again that means you are taking up an important skill slot to basically just repair. Theoretically you can place them on the ledges or encampments around the control points which should give you the proper angles and range, plus added protection from enemies identifying where they are located. This method, while potentially amazing, I have currently been unable to confirm as viable.
The burst capability of the Elementalist is extremely important for burning down the Guild Lord should you choose to go after them. However, your abilities can agro other guards if they have an AoE or chaining element to them so be careful what you use so you don’t grab more than you can handle.
Like most maps your illusions can cause mass confusion on this map. It works even better in the Sanctum because of the multi-tiered nature of the terrain. You can plop an Illusion down in a higher area, protected from AoE damage and move somewhere else, plant another on a different tier, and so forth. This can make it very difficult for the enemy to figure out who is the biggest threat since many times you will find over half both teams fighting in that area. There is a rather nice analysis of Mesmer dps in this map in the premier episode of Buildcast.
The Necomancer skill Spectral Walk can give your team a very distinct advantage by getting to the enemies Natural Control Point very rapidly. This can be achieved by severing the tether, which does give you 3 seconds of vulnerability, but this will easily wear off by the time you reach the enemy Natural. The other useful skill is the Elite: Flesh Golem. This guy has one very useful ability that favors fighting in the Sanctum’s floor, charge. The charge ability not only hits the target and knocks them down but also causes damage to every person between the golem and the target.