GuildWars Wiki
Disambiguous.png This article is about attacks in general. For the skill type, see attack (skill type).

Attack can mean the following:

  • A regular attack is an auto-attack performed with the wielded primary weapon. When skill descriptions say "in combat," they are referring to performing a regular attack.
  • "Physical attack" and "elemental attack" mean physical damage and elemental damage, respectively, when used in the context of weapon or armor descriptions (such as "+10 armor versus elemental attacks"). This does not refer to attacks in the combat sense, since such armor would provide its bonus against a spell like Fireball.

Note: In general, the use of skills (with the exception of attack skills) do not constitute attacks/combat, even if they deal damage to enemies.

Attacks in combat

Combat attacks can be categorized into melee combat attacks and ranged combat attacks.


A melee combat attack is performed when the attacker holds a sword, an axe, a hammer, daggers, or a scythe; or if the attacker is a pet or a necromancer minion (excluding Bone Fiend, which has a ranged attack).


A ranged combat attack is performed when the attacker holds a bow, a staff, a wand, or a spear. Note that a ranged attack is always considered ranged, even if the target is in melee range when the attack is performed. A ranged attack begins when the weapon is drawn, and ends just before the projectile is launched. A summoned Bone Fiend's attack is also ranged.

Attack skills

Activating an attack skill will cause the character to attack. These attacks will count as a melee or ranged attack depending on the weapon being held.

  • After a character has swung his weapon (or fired his bow, thrown his spear, and so on) he will be considered to have attacked for the purposes of skills such as Clumsiness or Spiteful Spirit. It does not matter whether the attack successfully hits or not.
  • If the attacker is not blind; the attacked character is not under the effects of a skill, spirit, or enchantment that will cause him to block; the attack is not dodged (in the case of ranged attacks); and the attack does not stray (also in the case of ranged attacks), then the attack will always hit. There is no inherent chance to miss. Some skills may prevent blocking and some attack skills may not be blocked.
  • If an attack successfully hits, damage is dealt. See damage for how various factors contribute.