The Banner Saga - Warrior Banners and You
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The Banner Saga - Warrior Banners and You


   Member of Gaiscioch na Rall

Posted On: 03/04/2014 at 10:29 PM

You may know of Warrior banners in a few different lights. The big, glowy circle that raises a keep lord just in the nick of time to: a) Save your keep ("Yay, I love banners!") or b) Stop you from capturing an enemies keep (&*$#@! OP banners!"). Another way you might know of them is the "Hey, I just hit my button to pick up some loot, and now my weapon abilities have disappeared and I have a stupid flag stuck to my hand!"

Ah Yes, but it is a magic flag! Your weapon abilities may have moved temporarily, but they have been replaced by some that can come in very handy in different situations. You're thinking, "I don't have time to learn a bunch of some other classes abilities that I may use once in a blue moon." You're in luck! Four of the five abilities are the same across all the different banners. Only the number 2 skill changes from banner to banner.

Let's take a look at the various abilities that our magic flag possesses.

Number 1 skill - Stab: A melee attack that I rarely use. It does however try to answer the age old Monty Python question, "What about pointed sticks?" For reference -

Number 2 skill - This is the one that differs from banner to banner, you don't HAVE to remember what each one does. When in doubt just hit 2 before you drop the banner and you have the chance to cast a helpful AOE buff or heal for the group.

A quick breakdown of the abilities of the different banners: The Purple flag with the Book - casts a small AOE heal with a short health regen. The Green flag with the Circles - casts AOE Fury, giving a 20% bonus to critical chance. The Fancy Glowy Reddish Brown flag - casts AOE Stability. The Reddish Brown flag with the Sword - Hit an enemy and inflict Vulnerability, increasing their damage taken. The Orange flag with the Shield - AOE Knockback.
If there's a banner just sitting there, and you're waiting on a cooldown or something. Grab it, smack 2 and drop it. Boom, you just became a healer or a buffer while leaving all that room in your build for more... destructive (Fun!) abilities.

Number 3 skill - Inspire: "Tired of lagging behind the group and being at the mercy of guardians and mesmers with their fancy glowy fields just to keep up?" If you don't have a handy Swiftness ablity in your build, ask a friendly warrior to drop a banner for you before traveling. This ability casts an AOE Swiftness on a fairly short 15 second cooldown. Not only do you free yourself, you free all of your slow-footed brethren from the tyranny of glowy fields. Viva la Resistance!

Number 4 skill - Sprint: A charge forward or towards an enemy target. Useful for traveling quickly or getting into the thick of the fight. A couple of quick pointers: If you are using the banner to escape from a hostile situation, be sure you don't have an enemy behind you targeted or you will sprint heroically to your death back into the teeth of the angry mob. When used for traveling, make sure you are pointed in the direction you wish to go and not off a cliff or the side of a bridge. Although, you will look quite gallant as the banner streams out behind you when you plummet to your death.

Number 5 skill - Plant Standard: Sticks the banner back in the ground. Useful for re-enacting the claiming of the New World. It is also a blast finisher! It does have a short animation. So, if you just wish to be rid of the stupid magic flag, use your weapon swap button to drop it immediately.

Weapon Swap Key - Drops the banner instantly, no animation. (Warriors not responsible for any splinters that may occur.)

Happy Banner Facts:
- Banners last a pretty long time, you can drop it for a fight or two and pick it back up and carry on.
- There is a decent buff around the various banners and if the warrior that dropped the banner is traited into it, there will be a nice area health regen also. These buffs will be in effect in an area around you even while you are carrying the banner. I can list all the different buffs, but I see your eyes are starting to glaze over. Moving on.
- The Number 5 Blast finisher is great for professions that have limited or awkward to use blast finishers. The blast finisher can be used by multiple people on long lasting fields if timed right or just bug your warrior buddies for a couple more banners. Also, leaves room in your build for something a little more harmful (to the enemies not to your allies, as that would not be very friendly and make any future groups unlikely.)

Another couple things to remember is that the ability cooldowns are per person, not per banner. So the banners can be passed around the group ("But officer, it's just a magic stick."; "Sure, sure. That's what they all say. Come along quietly, please.") You can then stack buffs and Swiftness on friends or Vulnerability on a foe, or have a stream of AOE heals and regen going off. Most abilities have about a 1 second cast time.

TLDR version: Weapon Swap button - Bye bye stupid flag; Button 2 - AOE buff or heal, or something; Button 3 - AOE go fast

TLDR further reading: Button 1 - Wave flag; Button 4 - CHARGE!; Button 5 - Blast finisher

I just wanted to share the joy of my hobby of furiously waving banners about, while being my version of humorous. Because, if I don't laugh. I might start crying.;)

If you found the above to be in any way informative... it's not my fault.

Good hunting and thanks for reading.


» Edited on: 2014-03-05 00:41:07

» Edited on: 2014-03-05 00:41:43

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Member Response:


Commander limetwyst.7039
   Member of Blood of the Martyr

Replied On: 03/05/2014 at 07:10 PM

Heh heh nice humor (bonus to informative).

GW siggy photo GW siggy.png


Commander xivor.8754
   Member of Chariot of Fire

Replied On: 03/06/2014 at 08:14 PM

Thank you for this guide.  I am not a Warrior guru, and I understand the usage of banners is very important to WvW.  You really hit on some hard points in your guide.  Question: What are your thoughts on Battle Standard? I have seen many commanders request BS to be used in order to revive in large scale battles.  As a Commander myself, I have debated within myself whether BS carries enough use over other Warrior elites.  Your thoughts?

Combat Medic Barbie | Mist Walker Barbie | Rigor Mortis Barbie

Guild Leader of Chariot of Fire [FIRE]


   Member of Gaiscioch na Rall

Replied On: 03/06/2014 at 11:26 PM

These are just my personal thoughts, more experienced warriors or commanders, please feel correct, criticize, or add you own pointers.

Lately, since returning to the game I have been trying various warrior support builds. I have predominantly stuck with the banner. It's been quite useful in both WvW and Mass PvE, like the Lion's Arch events. I haven't done much dungeoning, so if there are some dungeoneers out there that have some tip and tricks to add. Please share, if you are so inclined. :)

The 2 main Elite skills I use are the Signet of Rage and Battle Standard, I haven't used Rampage a great deal at all. Both main skills grant the buffs of Might, Fury and Swiftness. The Signet has the advantage of being on a much shorter cool down, which can be traited to be even shorter and it gives the warrior a passive adrenaline regen. The traited cool down is one of the quickest of any Elite skill, so if you are using runes that trigger on Elite casts.  The  traited Signet of Rage will give you a good many chances to trigger them. I will also use and activate the Signet when I'm traveling a good distance to the battle as the Swiftness granted lasts for quite a while and I can change back to Battle Standard when I get closer to the battle.

The Battle standard while having the same buffs of Fury, Might and Swiftness, these are also applied to allies in the area and they will keep refreshing for the duration of the banner as long as the ally stays in range. The number 2 skill will cast a lengthy AOE Stability, when picked up an used by someone who hasn't used that ability on the banner recently. So, pass that sucker around. And of course, the big one, we have the AOE resurrect when it's first planted. The downsides of Battle Standard that I have found are the extremely long cool down (can be shortened somewhat while traited) and the other is the longish 2 second glowy cast time. It's easy to see and interrupt if you don't currently have Stability, and I personally have trouble timing it so it hits before the downed people totally croak.

I think there may be a point of diminishing returns in certain situations, if too many warriors in a group have Battle Standard. You can only res people so many times and I don't believe buffs from two of the same type of banner stack, unless you are talking about the number 2 skill which can stack when cast by different players. The Signet also helps warrior DPS by granting bonus adrenaline so they can use their burst skills more often. I think it also depends on the situation. If you are desperately trying to defend your lord's room until reinforcements arrive, a bunch of banners can totally frustrate the attackers. They'll watch the keep lord and the defenders rise from the dead so many times, the enemy will be checking to see if they may have started up DAYZ by accident. So I guess just be creative, I know there some awesome tacticians out there that have come up with a bunch of their own tricks.  Feel free to share :)

Good Hunting and thanks for the question!

» Edited on: 2014-03-06 23:32:35

» Edited on: 2014-03-06 23:41:27

» Edited on: 2014-03-06 23:50:55

» Edited on: 2014-03-07 11:19:04

User submitted image


Commander xivor.8754
   Member of Chariot of Fire

Replied On: 03/07/2014 at 05:39 AM

Wow, good information.  Thanks! This helps me a lot as a commander...but also as my brand new growing Warrior, haha.

Combat Medic Barbie | Mist Walker Barbie | Rigor Mortis Barbie

Guild Leader of Chariot of Fire [FIRE]


   Member of Gaiscioch na Rall

Replied On: 03/07/2014 at 12:30 PM

And thank you. I am by no means an expert at any facet of GW2. I just recently returned to GW2 and Warrior has been my profession of choice from Beta until now.

Heck, I still learn stuff everyday.  Sometimes from veteran warriors, sometimes from a rookie who seems to be doing something completely off the wall, but it works! Because they may be seeing things from different angle than those of us that have played for a period of time. It is easy to rely on things we've already figured out that work. But, I think Anet is trying to knock us out of our ruts with some of the new fight mechanics that require some alternative thinking on our part.

The different things I'm still figuring out with banners are how to position different banners around the fight so their buff effects do the most good, as well as the distance between banners to maximize healing effects (when I'm set up as a banner healer). Also, I'm still trying to get a handle on which types NPCs that can be bannered, like keep lords, in the different modes of PvE.

» Edited on: 2014-03-07 12:33:54

User submitted image


   Member of Organised Crime Syndicate

Replied On: 08/16/2014 at 08:08 PM

Wow! I didn't know any of this stuff! My fault for not reading each skill but then again who has time to read when you are in the middle of a fight and accidentally pick up and banner and just want to get rid of it? But now I know and I will put this new-found knowledge to good use! 

Thanks for sharing!!

Summer Raine


   Member of Gaiscioch na Rall

Replied On: 10/11/2014 at 09:54 AM

tyvm for post :D

<3 monty python




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