Elite skills are skill types that have been specially designated by the designers as being more significant than non-elites. Players may only include one elite skill in their build. However, under special circumstances, a skill bar might have several Elites and this is explained below in copying Elite Skills.
Elite skills are meant to have powerful effects. Many builds are often constructed around (and named after) their elite skill. The choice of this type build leads to many of the remaining skill choices. A few examples of such elite skill-based builds include Barrage Ranger, Spiteful Spirit Necromancer, Healer's Boon Monk, Vow of Strength Dervish, Signet of Spirits Ritualist, Crippling Shot Ranger or Panic Mesmer.
- Unlock through a Priest of Balthazar.
- Learn and unlock by using a Signet of Capture while standing near a dead boss who has the skill.
- There are three permanent elite PvE-only skills that can only be learned via quests.
- Learn previously unlocked elite skills (via other characters, a Priest of Balthazar, or purchasing account upgrades via the Guild Wars Online Store) by using an appropriate elite skill tome.
Total number of elite skills
Common5 Total Core6 5 (1) 5 (1) 5 (1) 5 (1) 5 (1) 5 (1) (1) (1) (1) (1) 1 31 (10) Prophecies 111 10 10 10 92 10 - - - - 1 61 Factions 10 10 10 10 10 10 15 15 - - - 90 Nightfall 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 15 15 2 112 Eye of the North3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 3 Bonus Mission Pack4 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 4 4 Total 36 (1) 35 (1) 35 (1) 35 (1) 34 (1) 35 (1) 25 (1) 25 (1) 15 (1) 15 (1) 11 301 (10)
- Warriors have one extra elite because Hundred Blades was originally a non-elite skill.
- Mesmers have one less elite because Mantra of Celerity was removed before Guild Wars was originally released.
- There are no profession-specific elite skills unique to Eye of the North. In order to capture elites in Eye of the North regions, access to the campaign the skill originates from is required.
- All available elite skills in the Bonus Mission Pack quests are temporary and limited to the quest they are found in.
- This includes event-related skills and such found in the Bonus Mission Pack quests - see Notes for more information.
- This includes the elite skills added for the 15 year anniversary celebration in brackets.
- Elite skills cannot be learned or unlocked at skill trainers or through skill quests, except for certain elite PvE-only skills, which can only be learned via quests:
- Some elites are considered to be less powerful than comparable non-elite skills.
- There are elite monster skills; however, from the point of game mechanics, there is no difference with non-elite monster skills (unlike players, NPCs do not have the elite-specific limits).
Temporary elite skills
- See also: List of temporary skills
- Some elite skills are temporarily available, such as event-related elite skills and elite skills found in the Bonus Mission Pack quests.
- During the April Fools' Day quest Annihilator, "Tango Down!" is temporarily available.
- During the Halloween quest Scarred Psyche, Cry of Madness is temporarily available.
- During The Battle of Jahai, a special version of Dragon Slash is temporarily available.
- During The Flight North, a special version of Shared Burden is temporarily available.
- During The Rise of the White Mantle, Signet of the Unseen is temporarily available.
- During The Tengu Accords, a special version of Offering of Spirit is temporarily available.
Copying elite skills
- Although characters can only equip a single elite, there are skills that temporarily allow additional elite skills to be on a single skill bar.
- Arcane Echo allows the user to duplicate skills, including elites.
- Arcane Mimicry allows the caster to use an elite that an ally has equipped.
- Arcane Larceny, Arcane Thievery, Simple Thievery, and Smooth Criminal allow casters to take a skill from foes, including elites.
- Inspired Enchantment and Revealed Enchantment remove a foe's enchantment and allows the caster to use the removed enchantment.
- Inspired Hex and Revealed Hex remove an ally's hex and allows the caster to use the removed hex.
- Signet of Capture, using multiple copies of Signet of Capture, players can learn up to three additional elites.
- After zoning, only the right-most elite skill will remain on the skill bar.
List of skills that interact with elite skills
|Arcane Mimicry||Spell. This skill becomes target ally's elite skill (20 seconds). Cannot self-target. No effect if target's elite skill is a form.||15||2||60||Z||Core|
|Price of Pride||Hex Spell. (5...17...20 seconds.) Causes 1...6...7 Energy loss the next time target foe uses an elite skill.||5||2||8||Domination MagicZ||Nightfall|
|Signet of Capture||Signet. Choose one skill from a nearby dead Boss of your profession. Signet of Capture is permanently replaced by that skill. If that skill was elite, gain 250 XP for every level you have earned.||2||2||Z||Core|
|Signet of Humility||Signet. Disables elite skill (1...13...16 second[s]). Disables your non-Mesmer skills (10 seconds).||3||20||Inspiration MagicZ||Core|
|Symbols of Inspiration||Elite Skill. (1...25...31 seconds.) This skill becomes the Elite of target foe. Elite spells you cast use your Fast Casting attribute instead of their normal attributes.||5||1||15||Fast CastingZ||Nightfall|
- Prior to the August 23, 2007 update that limited a skill bar to having only 3 PvE-only skills, a player could capture up to 6 elites in their skill bar in certain explorable areas in Prophecies, making it possible to have 7 elite skills at once.
- Lightbringer Signet was considered an elite until the August 7, 2008 update. Until it was fixed in the July 14, 2011 update, players who achieved the Elonian Skill Hunter used to show 141/140 elites captured on the Elonian Skill Hunter title track.
- Skill Hunter achievement
|Elite skill lists (edit)|
|Warrior • Ranger • Monk • Necromancer • Mesmer • Elementalist|
|Assassin • Ritualist • Paragon • Dervish • All|
|By capture location|
|By release • (Prophecies) • (Factions) • (Nightfall) • (Eye of the North)|
|Warrior • Ranger • Monk • Necromancer • Mesmer|
|Elementalist • Assassin • Ritualist • Paragon • Dervish|