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PvP Primer: Templates, Text Strings, and Transfers, Oh My!


The template system came out with the release of Nightfall, satisfying the desire of many fans for an easier way to manage characters, as well as offering streamlined control of the newly introduced Nightfall Heroes. Templates allow you to save your favorite builds for later use and even share those builds with other players. Skill templates work for both PvP and PvE, but only PvP characters can use the equipment templates.

When you save a template, the game generates a short string of characters and saves that string in a text file on your computer's hard drive. We've dubbed the resulting string a "template code." This code gets saved in a simple text file, so you can easily use templates you get from friends, websites, forums, or even through email—no downloading necessary. Simply copy the template into a text file, give that file a name you'll remember, and save it in the correct directory. Don't worry if you didn't get all that—we'll go over each step in this article.

Whenever you save a template in-game or add a template code to your Guild Wars directory, all characters on that computer (from any account) can access the template. Note that if you play on separate computers you'll need to shuttle template codes back and forth. Luckily, template files barely take up any room; email, USB flash drives, and floppy disks can all accommodate even the most robust needs of an entire guild's template files.

We started the PvP Primer series before the release of Nightfall, and have so far described builds without including template codes. At the time, we thought adding the codes would complicate what was supposed to be an introduction to PvP for new players, so we left them out. Now that templates are becoming more commonplace in Guild Wars PvP discussions, we feel it is time to begin using them here.

Rather than retroactively spread templates throughout the original articles, which would make readers sift through old articles, we have summarized all of the builds to date below with the relevant template codes. To make it easier for new readers, we have also added hyperlinks within the previous PvP Primer articles to their template codes on this page. Going forward, any article published after this one will have template codes embedded inside, similar to the format in the Alone With Grenth build published in a recent State of the Game article.


Template Transfers

Templates allow you to add builds to your Guild Wars accounts quickly rather than having to sort through the list of skills in-game and equip them on your Skill Bar one-by-one. Let's say you just saw a great build someone developed, tested, and posted on a website. As long as the buildmaker supplied the template code, you can use these steps for a quick and easy template transfer:

  1. Highlight the entire template code with your mouse.
  2. Copy the code to your computer's clipboard (Ctrl+C to copy).
  3. Open a new text file with Notepad (usually found under Accessories in your Start Menu program list).
  4. Paste the code into the Notepad file (Press Ctrl+V to paste).
  5. Save the file with a name you'll remember.
  6. For skills templates, save or move the file to: C:\Program Files\Guild Wars\Templates\Skills
  7. For equipment templates, save or move the file to: C:\Program Files\Guild Wars\Templates\Equipment
  8. Start up Guild Wars and look for your new template in the list.
  9. You're done. Go play.

PvP Primer Build Archive

Below, you can find template codes for all the builds we've ever mentioned in past primer articles. The PvP Primer articles are listed in the order they were published with the character builds listed below the article title in the order they appeared within that article. For more information about a build, click the code link, which will take you back to the original article.

Team Trials—PvP Training Without Other Players

ZB Monk - AzRRLfME/1MTCjb6VylumIwagA
Shock Axe - AhRSFiUScUOSFoiTJAcO0KdFBA
Warrior's Anguish - A1QyTOkBMgN2gBHMIDQEcAIEBA

Zaishen Combat: Part One—Shock Axe Warrior

Shock Axe - AhRSFiUScUOSFoiTJAcO0KdFBA
Suggested equipment: - RmHu5cOO6jJSmcdpqEmjMULNmj8EEKmjMFNCmjEsOHm70TA

Zaishen Combat: Part Two—ZB Monk

ZB Monk - AzRRLfME/1MTCjb6VylumIwagA

Random Arena Cross-Training

ZB Monk - AzRRLfME/1MTCjb6VylumIwagA
Hammer Warrior - AhNSVGlT8oV+JjlzCYhsEAEAA
Suggested equipment: - RmGF6kOQ6jqEmjMULNmj8EMKmjUFNCmjEsOHm70T

Skill Synergy: Part One

Blinding Dervish - AaMyamys5AuFvf3D8/F6OgFAA
Suggested equipment: - RmGC9Md3bj6kmi0TLlmiEsUkmiUc1kmiEsGlmikP
Searing Elementalist - AWJiCzwDugWgMobj1m2uQAA
Spiteful Necromancer - AkJyBbwDyIPwGEaOV+8YQAA
Battery Paragon - AZQSFhmnbpOP4isG+dvufLcFBA
Dragon Sword - AxICFHxzizvAYmaMluiWRAA

Skill Synergy: Part Two

Prison Assassin - AXQyH6hd84N0ZAIDDhxAbgpZBA
Fast Cast Monk - ATRCE+IDcjO5kf3GZTbCsAZk4K
Denial Mesmer - A1MiAPkA5cCUB7gYAKYG8AEAA
Conditioning Ranger - ASMS2ipX6obnN3aUjwB74bEAA
Healing Ritualist - A4MCISqh8kOjnTOpZzece2EAA

Hero Battles and Skill Synergy: Part One

Dragon Sword - AxICFHxzizvAYmaMluiWRAA
Prison Assassin - AXQyH6hd84N0ZAIDDhxAbgpZBA
Fast Cast Monk - ATRCE+IDcjO5kf3GZTbCsAZk4K
Blinding Dervish - AaMyamys5AuFvf3D8/F6OgFAA
Suggested equipment: - RmGC9Md3bj6kmi0TLlmiEsUkmiUc1kmiEsGlmikP

Hero Battles and Skill Synergy: Part Two

Spiteful Necromancer - AkJyBbwDyIPwGEaOV+8YQAA
Dragon Sword - AxICFHxzizvAYmaMluiWRAA
Fast Cast Monk - ATRCE+IDcjO5kf3GZTbCsAZk4K
Denial Mesmer - A1MiAPkA5cCUB7gYAKYG8AEAA

Builds for Alliance Battle Builds and More

Master of Magic Smiter - A2Myj6wM4IWhIPEXyM5mYREAA
YAA Solo - AxNSVSxR5QY9LAmAzEUrEAYgA
YAA Group - AxRSVSxeTUOEW/CgJwYY3RBABA
YAA Alliance - AxQSVSxR5zMEW/CgJwYYzrBgxH
Mel Dervish - AaMiqlys7IfDweb0Nzt5KuFAA


Equipment Considerations

Most of the builds mentioned above work with various equipment selections, and we leave it to your personal preference for exact rune and weapon choices. Some builds, however, have strongly recommended setups for maximum affect; in those cases we included an equipment template. Bear in mind, that equipment templates save only the first weapon slot and do not save anything in the character inventory. This avoids possible conflicts with space in the inventory and focuses on setting armor runes and insignia. After loading an equipment template, check the first weapon set and make sure it works for you. Then, create any additional weapon sets for swapping before entering combat.