Forts will start out without any unique features. As more and more supply caravans arrive they will start to build siege equipment or other defensive structures for you to use.
A supply bull successfully arriving at a fort will replace destroyed doors and siege equipment. After enough bulls have arrived your fort will also be upgraded, gaining additional defensive features. Legendary Mordrem (which you can kill for achievements) are supposedly more common at highly upgraded forts. These Legendary Mordrem are upgrades of other types of mordrem, and you fight them in essentially the same way as their lesser counterparts.
Although forts will eventually have siege equipment for you to use, they are not affected by your WvW siege masteries. They do however scale with player offensive stats, so more DPS oriented players will do more damage.
All forts will build Burning Oil pots above their doors. These are extremely good at killing attacking enemies as long as either the doors are still up, or if you have somebody below you keeping the Mordrem in place. However they become nearly useless once some wall segments have been destroyed and enemies have alternate routes inside.
Another common feature that all forts start with is the ability to periodically call in Air Strikes. To do this, find one of several Signal Torches located around the fort and light a brazier. Braziers are normally located on the wall ramparts – if you don’t know where it is at your current location, take the time to find it and memorize how to quickly get to it from a nearby torch. Airstrike will come in after a brief delay, heavily damaging and knocking back all enemies outside the fort walls – it will have no effect on enemies inside the fort. Try to time the airstrike to start up just as a new wave spawns. Airstrikes can be called in about once every 2 minutes.
Red Rock (SE)
Red Rock features a pair of arrow carts on the southwest ramparts. These arrow carts are extremely powerful and can mow down enemies far faster than anything players can do on their own, so defending them should be a high priority. It’s better for you to camp on the stairs and defend the players manning them so they can attack uninterrupted than it is for you to be fighting the Mordrem by yourself. Several enemies of each wave will make a B-line for these arrowcarts if they get inside the fort, so they will need some protection.
The southern arrowcart is more important, as it’s able to hit the large number of enemies that spawn to the south. The western arrowcart can hit the nearby stairs that are in the southern’s blindspot, so it should try to protect the arrowcarts first, and attack the western spawn location or the courtyard whenever it has some spare time.
A third arrowcart will eventually by built near the destructible western wall. It’s good a clearing out enemies in the courtyard and can hit both doorways.
The majority of enemies will spawn on the south side, with a smaller force coming in from the north. Eventually the west wall may get knocked down, which will open up a third front for you to defend.
Amber Sandfall (SW)
Amber Sandfall is the most difficult fort to defend. This fort features several cannons on the upper ramparts, but they lack the range to be much use – one of the cannons can be used to defend a destructible portion of the northern wall though. Enemies will attack from both the north and east, with the northern force being slightly larger. Eventually the west wall might fall as well, opening up another avenue of attack.
This fort is very cramped, so take great care when fighting Teragriffs to not get pinned against a wall. The NPC you need to guard also tends to wander onto the ramparts to fight enemies, so if you can’t find her go up the stairs to look for her (usually on the north side). This fort is also very far from the spawn point, so you can’t rely on reinforcements.
Indigo Cave (Central)
There are several mortars on the upper levels of this fort, but their usefulness is limited because most enemies will be under their minimum range – about the only thing they can hit are the Vine Crawlers, and maybe some of the Husk Slingers. There is however an arrowcart in the main courtyard that is very effective at clearing out enemies that make it past the walls.
Enemies attack in equal numbers from both the north and south, so you’ll have to split your forces to deal with them. They spawn a long ways away from the fort, giving you lots of time to react. The only wall segments that can be destroyed are right next to doors anyway, so there aren’t any surprises here.
Blue Oasis (NW)
This fort has no extra siege equipment, but instead has barricades that cover several destructible wall segments on the south side, slowing their destruction down. You can find hammers inside the fort that can be used to rebuild these barricades.
The majority of enemies here spawn in the large open field to the south side, with a smaller force attacking the east side. There fighting is pretty standard here. This fort is far from the spawn point, so you can’t rely on reinforcements arriving in time.
Breach Events (Underground Bosses)
As you defend forts, the Pact Assault Preparations Completed bar will fill. It fills faster if you hold more forts. After filling, your forts will be destroyed and their upgrades removed, and a large worm will burrow into the center of each fort. Jump down the worm’s mouth to enter an underground cave, where you fight a unique boss depending on which location you jumped in from.
Each of these bosses has a unique item that can be obtained by using an Extractor utility item. The Extractor buff must be active when you kill it, and will dissapear once you get your item. You need to use the Experimental Extractor to get the newest collection piece. The exact piece you get with the Experimental Extractor is random, so you may not always get the one you want.
Mordrem Husk Copper (Red Rock)
This fight takes place in a single, large room. Smaller enemies will constantly spawn and attack players so you’ll either need to stay in the doorway and attack at range or be constantly moving. As they die, these enemies heal other nearby Mordrem (Including the boss), so it’s advised to either avoid hitting them or kill them far away from the Husk.
The boss itself has very high defense, but since it’s a group event it will be loaded up on conditions anyway so you might as well attack it normally. It has several basic AoE attacks that are powerful but easy to dodge. As long as there’s enough DPS here this boss isn’t difficult.
Eventually poison bubbles will start to spawn from the sides of the room and move towards the boss. On death, they poison nearby players and heal Mordrem near them. You can just ignore them and focus on attacking the boss as their heal isn’t significant.
Mordrem Teragriff Gold and Silver (Indigo Cave)
Two identical bosses which run laps around a circular path. These bosses charge forward, knocking down and heavily damaging player. If the two bosses would run into each other, they stop and perform a channeled attack deals heavy damage to nearby players and empowers themselves. There isn’t too much you can do to stop this from happening, but when you see it make sure you back off a bit and attack at range.
While charging these bosses will stop periodically. There are a number of poison bubbles scattered around the track. The trick is to pop a poison bubble when a boss is nearby – this debuffs them so that they are held in place for a short time and become much easier to attack. These bosses actually don’t have much health so they can be killed fairly quickly once debuffed. Getting the debuff on them is tricky however, so you’re likely to spend most of the time limit trying to get it to trigger. Damage bubbles, but don’t kill them until the boss is going to run over them. After the debuff wears off, they will change directions.
It’s best to focus down one boss first instead of trying to damage both of them. Once one goes down the other cannot perform it’s powerful Synergy attack, and it becomes easier head the remaining boss off when the rest of the track is safe. This fight can be completed very quickly once somebody lands the first debuff, so don’t give up even if it looks like you aren’t going to make it.
Mordrem Thrasher Platinum (Blue Oasis)
This boss fight is all about mobility. The fight takes place in a set of four chambers, forming a square. The boss will periodically teleport from one chamber to the next in a clockwise direction. If you are attacking the boss and it become invulnerable (not evading attacks, but invulnerable) it means it’s about to switch chambers. The easiest way to fight it is to be either bring several leap skills, or to attack at range while making your way towards the next chamber so that you’ll be in range of it after it teleports. It will often teleport after only a few attacks, especially during early stages of the fight, so get into position as fast as you can so you can pursue it.
The boss has several wide area attacks to watch out for. The first often happens right after it moves locations, and will pull players towards it in the center of the chamber. This is often followed up by it’s second attack, which shoots projectiles randomly in all directions – this attack is easily dodged as long as you aren’t too close.
There are a number of poison bubbles scattered around the chambers. Although in theory you should try to avoid hitting them, groups will often cleave damage them anyway. As you destroy them, the boss will gain stacks of Poisonous Buildup, which it can use to blanket a large area around it with a damaging goo that lasts several seconds. More bubbles spawn as the fight goes on, so you can expect to see this attack more often when it’s health gets lower.
Mordrem Troll Iron (Amber Sandfall)
This boss has two phases. In it’s first phase, it will hop around the arena using a several scattered AoE attacks that deal moderate damage. In general this phase isn’t very threatening. As it’s attacks connect with players, it will gain stacks of Honey Glazed. Once it hits 10, it gains the Sticky buff and the second phase begins.
In it’s second form, it anchors itself in the center of the arena. It uses a number of melee AoE attacks that come out very fast, so if you’re attacking in melee you need to be careful. It’s most devastating attack is it’s Bee Swarm, which has 3 parts – the first attack hits only enemies very close to the boss, the second hits enemies in a ring a medium distance away (but not up close), and the third will hit both close and very far enemies. For this third step the only safe spot is a medium distance, in the area that the second step hits. To dodge this attack you will have to move between the different distances to take advantage of the safe spots. If you’re downed or otherwise disabled when this attack starts you are very likely to get finished off by the third step.
As you damage this boss, Veteran Mordrem Trolls will spawn at certain health intervals (and defeated trolls will be revived). These trolls don’t function at all like normal Mordrem Trolls, and instead heal in an area and pull players towards themselves. If there’s only a handful of them up they can be ignored (since they get revived anyway) but near the end of the fight when they’re in large numbers they can become very annoying. Usually the boss will be at a lot enough health at this point that you should just concentrate on finishing it off, but if you can hit a few of these guys in the process it makes things easier.
How to fight Mordrem
These enemies will only move periodically, making them susceptible to AoE effects. They can be quite damaging if you don’t dodge their attacks, so keep moving while fighting them. They can launch several poisonous ground targeted shots at you, and if you’re nearby they have a large area whip attack that damages you and knocks you back – take care when fighting them near a ledge to not get knocked off. They have average health but will evade attacks for several seconds while they move.
These enemies are a high priority to kill. Their most damaging attack will plant them into the ground after channeling for several seconds, and will then continuously spawn damaging roots underneath all nearby players. You need to be constantly moving to dodge these (speed buffs help), and they do a ton of damage if you’re caught unprepared. If at all possible, interrupt this attack if you see a Leeching Thrasher planted on the ground.
Their second attack makes them spawn goop in a large area around themselves. If this attack hits anything it will heal the Leeching Thrasher for a moderate amount. Get out of the goop and attack at range ASAP, as you’ll take heavy damage if you try to fight it in melee and it will most likely outheal your damage anyway.
This enemy will charge in a straight line, leaving behind goop that will Torment and Cripple you if you’re touching it. The conditions can stack up very quickly if you get caught in the goo, so it’s advised to dodge out of it as soon as you can. If you immobilize a Vile Thrasher before it charges you can lock it in place, but immobilizing it during it’s charge will have no effect. Chasing it down as it charges is not recommended, so attack it at range. If you can hit it in the back while it’s charging you’ll do significantly more damage.
An extremely powerful enemy that can quickly kill you if you’re unprepared. Its most deadly attack is a charge that knocks down players and leaves a trail of damaging vines behind it. It will also block all projectiles while charging. If it pins you against a wall, it will chain stun you and the vines will stack on top of each other, killing you in only a few seconds. Try to fight them in open areas whenever possible and avoid having your back against a wall.
However if it tries to charge while crippled, chilled or immobilized, it will faceplant and be stunned for several seconds. If you can permanently keep up one of these control conditions you’ll be taking away it’s more powerful attack.
It also has an attack where it will stay in place and shoot roots at you similar to a Leeching Thrasher. This can do a lot of damage if you ignore it, but staying mobile will avoid most of the damage.
The most common Mordrem enemy. They have low durability but high damage output, especially if they attack you from behind. They also inflict criple and a small amount of bleeding, and give other Mordrem swiftness. You can usually kill them easily in a toe-to-toe encounter and they’re only a problem if they come in large numbers or take you by surprise.
Veteran, Elite and Champion wolves are far more durable than their vanilla counterparts, and should be approached with caution. An Elite or Champion wolf will kill you in only a few hits, so don’t try to take them solo.
Husks aren’t very dangerous by themselves, but are difficult to kill and can immobilize you. Since a number of other Mordrem have attacks that are devastating if you don’t get out of their area of effect, the Husk’s can often set you up for a very quick death. The attack that immobilizes sends burrowing roots through the ground in several direction after the Husk stomps it’s foot. Husks have super tough armor, but they are very susceptible to condition damage.
Appearing when you defend a fort, Husk Slingers are stationary enemies that will hurl rocks which do heavy damage to your doors and walls. If they run out of targets to break down, they will instead throw their rocks at defenders, doing heavy damage and knocking you and NPCs down in a large area. They aren’t an immediate threat when they spawn, but their AoE attack can quickly wipe out defenders once the rest of the fort has been demolished.
Like other Husks, Slingers have massive amounts of armor and also have a ton of health. Condition damage is more potent than direct damage, but no matter how you deal with them it takes a lot to bring them down.
Giant Husks that appear during defend events which will directly attack walls and doors. Once they run out of fortifications to destroy, they’ll attack you like a normal Husk. They are extremely durable and damaging, but very slow. Condition damage is recommended when dealing with them, but they take a ton of firepower to kill.
Small mordrem that are very frail but have a strong AoE heal. If you’re attacking a large group of them and don’t have amazing damage output, they will probably outheal you. If this happens, just ignore them and find something else to kill – they don’t do much on their own anyway. Always try to kill them when they’re mixed in with other Mordrem types though, as their heals will make your job a lot more difficult. Most attacks will interrupt their healing, so as long as you don’t ignore them they can be mopped up very quickly.
The big threat from Trolls is their bee swarms. They will launch AoE honey attacks that have the potential to mark you with a debuff that will make bees hunt you down relentlessly, and will summon said bees at regular intervals. They aren’t too bad at first, but after they get several bee swarms out they do considerable AoE damage. Trolls should be focused early so they don’t have time to overwhelm you.
It’s important to keep Caravans running, but it only requires 2-3 people to safely escort a Supply Bull, so if there’s a huge pack you might want to leave after the one encounter (so you still get credit) and find something more productive to do.
ALWAYS have at least one ranged weapon on your build. Many times enemies will use AoE attacks or otherwise be deadly to fight up close, so having the ability to deal with them from a safe distance is a must.
Interrupts are particularly handy in this area, as a lot of the danger comes from a handful of specific attacks. Condition Removals are useful but not required, and Stun Breakers / Stability are a handy get-out-of-jail-free card for fighting Teragriffs.
My recommended order to kill things is Leeching Thrashers, Menders, Trolls, Everything Else, Normal Husks, Smasher / Slinger Husks. This is of course just opinion, so focus on whatever your build is good against or what you find most threatening.
If you build it, they will come – Many time it will just be 1-3 people clearing out a fallen fort, but many more to keep it from falling again. More players will come as supply caravans are escorted to your fort, so go ahead and secure forts even if you’re by yourself.
If all else fails, try talking with people! A simple or “I’ll hold them at the door if somebody wants to hop on the oil” or “We need more a few more at Amber” will do wonders. Try to make request before you’re in big trouble though.
The key to getting the most loot is by getting credit for many events. Judge whether or not you need to stay to keep an event from failing, and if not you can stray for a minute to get credit for another event. Escort bulls for the first leg of their journey, or if you’re at a fort and see one incoming try to get in on the last fight. Mordrem miniboss events are also pretty common just outside fort walls, so look to pick them off as well. And of course, use shovels to find hidden chests during any downtime you might have.