Interface and skills types

General presentation:

Welcome to you new player, today we will see how to make the most of the game's interface. Guild Wars 2 does not allow to customize its interface much, this is linked to developers' desire who want players to focus on the environment instead of the interface. The advantage is that it allows us to write a guide that will apply to everyone.

Summary diagram of the interface: 

Base complete

The interface above is the Mesmer's interface. Interfaces of the other classes are identical to this one except for the profession skills at the top left of your life gauge. We will look at each element of this interface in detail.


Skills are actions that serve primarily during combat. The ones you have chosen to equip are present in your skill bar, but can be changed as soon as you are out of combat, by changing weapons or by selecting a utility:

  • Skills 1 to 5 are weapons skills, they are defined according to your equipped weapons and your class.
  • Skill 6 is your heal skill.
  • Skills 7, 8 and 9 are the utilities. Choose from those available for your class and race.
  • Skill 0 is the elite skill, available at level 30. Choose from those available for your class and race.
  • Skills F1 to F4 are special so-called profession skills, they are unique by class and variants for some (related to utilities).
  • The left arrow allows you to change weapons. Classes like the elementalist or the engineer do not have a weapons change.
  • Above your utilities, you will find a list of icons related to buffs or conditions affecting you.

Barre d armes

Skills types:

Skills can be grouped by class and race, but also by skill type. Some classes have skills of an exclusive type while some types are shared. We list here the most common types:

  • Sequence (ex: Notch – Kick - Impulse): If the chain's first skill hits, the second becomes available and so on.
  • Channeled skill (ex: Hundred blades): these skills have a significant loading time. A minor effect occurs during launch and a powerful effect occurs if full loading is completed without interruption.
  • Transformation (e.g., Avatar of Melandru): These skills transform the appearance of your character and replace your normal skills with others.
  • Signet (ex: Signet of Stone): Signs are skills that give a passive bonus when not activated and have an effect on activation. All classes except the returning and the engineer have signs. The specialized ghost has a peculiar form of signs: the facets of the legendary dragon.
  • Trap (ex: Spike Trap): Slow Aoe that your character poses at his feet. Requires the passage of an enemy once the setup is complete to activate.
  • Shout (e.g., “Stand Your Ground!”): Skills that affect many targets, often with instant incantation times.


There are several pieces of information below the skills: a red bar indicates that your current target is out of reach of this skill. A red target indicates that this skill is a targeting skill. A white circle indicates that pressing the skill icon for a long time extends its effects.

Status of the character:

In addition to the skill locations, the interface includes vital information about the status of your character:

Gw624The red circle in the center of your interface is your health gauge. If the gauge is empty, you fall to the ground or are defeated (if you are below level 5).
The icon at the bottom left indicates a health point malus (grey, yellow, orange and red). The higher the malus, the less life you have when you land. A red malus means instant death.

Gw621 1The endurance gauge above the health gauge indicates the amount of endurance your character possesses. Endurance allows you to dodge enemy attacks. A full bar allows you to dodge twice.
The icon at the bottom right indicates the state of your armor, the shield indicates that a number of pieces of your armor are damaged. If the shield is indicated in red and broken, it is because a piece of armor is completely broken (more details in the guide on death).

Editor: Myalesca
Layout: Reegar Else
Images: Juke & Myalesca
Correction: On En A Gros
Translation: Juke

Last edited: 05/10/2021

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