Hardcore lvl 87 - Mullet's EK Tanky Mofo Guide [REVISED...AGAIN] - now with conduit


Mullet_N_Moustache - 87 EK witch (RIP @ lvl 88 to lag GG)

New main: Mullet_Moustache

Mullet_Minion - 30ish Elemental cleaver ranger

I wish my balls were as big as this guy's.....
....to show his face in public......RESPECT! GG!!

Updated 14/03/13
- updated gear - new amulet, wand
- added section "revised build +1, now with conduit"

Updated 08/03/13
- updated gear - new gloves, ring
- added rationale for using chain - in "thoughts and considerations" section

Updated 02/03/13
- Finally got my 5L, started using chain!
- had to swap out faster projectiles tho for mana leech
- got new wand with proj speed
- updated gear

Updated 28/02/13
- revised build a little, saved one point, enabled me to get the node for extra time on endurance charges
- thx DUNKMASTEREXTREME for the tip! :P

Updated 27/02/13
- updated gear
- added my offhand stuff
- added revised build
- revised lvling guide as appropriate
- updated the pics (lower dps, more survivability)

Updated 25/02/13
- updated gear, changed a ring, changed faster casting for culling strike on bear traps
- started using enduring cry & molten shell (for the lolz)
- managed to roll 6 socket on my chest...now need to save fusings to make a 6L....
- got a nice chaos res wand, now +45 chaos res :)
- will update pics when have time

Updated 22/02/13
- added amazing/ ghetto mullet & moustache pic.....GG

Updated 21/02/13
- added leveling guide
- updated end game build

Updated 20/02/13
- bought a new shield, updated the gear.
- added some pics


Revised build +1, now with conduit (14/03/13)

Since getting my 5L, i started using chain (200% mana cost multiplier).
This made my EK mana cost huge (175mana with 0.78 cast speed) and therefore i had to use a mana leech gem.

After much deliberation, i felt that it was not optimised, i wanted to swap out mana leech in favour of a more useful gem (after all witch is the caster class and shouldnt need to rely on such a gem).

As such, this would allow me to swap in faster projectiles instead in my 5L, therefore making it "not" mandatory to get it on my wand (therefore more flexibility in choosing a weapon).

After discussion with some peeps, i did a heavy respec of the left side of the witch starting tree. Instead i got to the left side by going from the right, then underneath in a "U shape", which allowed me to pick up more mana regen nodes + conduit.

I now have 120% mana regen from passives. One thing to note is that i had to get mana regen on both my rings and my amulet (as well as having the mana regen nodes) in order to be able to run chain EK without running out of mana.

Now i can use chain EK on the 5L without mana leech, allowing me to swap in faster projectiles which is much more efficient. As i said before, quality chain also adds projectile speed which helps tremendously. For the 6L (when i finally get one) i will add in iron will which will boost dps significantly.

Picking up conduit gives great group utility, allowing me to share my endurance charges with the group, increasing their survivability (which im sure they appreciate).

Apologies to anyone who has been following the build rigidly. I am constantly looking for ways to optimise the build and therefore have respecced a fair few times.

You can see this either as an end game respec, or you can try and incorporate it earlier into the build (which is kind of like in the 30's after picking up EB on the right side of witch tree).

I did this respec at lvl 87. For those who would like to run EK chain without mana leech, i suggest that you do this respec when you get a 5L and have the appropriate mana regen gear. Otherwise, you can follow my build as previously.

Let me know what you think.


Current build at lvl 87

Revised Build (28/02/13)

My original build was pretty tanky, but i always did not know where to go after doing templar tree. I originally went into shadow, but after much deliberation, thought about going for IR, but instead chose to keep templar tree and then went into mara tree. Also specced out of a few cast speed nodes, in favour of more armour (in mara tree).

Elemental adaptation is awesome, and mara start tree is awesome.

You may ask why i didn't just start mara.....

.....Well i was a summoner to begin with then i specced into EK like in the 40's. Also everyone is mara/ shadow EK so wanna be bit unique in that sense. Also mara is ugly. lol.

The big hp regen node really helps for them slow regen maps (i swap in blood magic onto my EK on these annoying maps).

Also the extra res from elemental adaptation - i noticed a massive difference when doing the map with the lightning totem boss, also with piety in temple, no problems with the lightning :)

I lost a bit of hp by speccing out of shadow tree, but gained like 40% more armour, +5 all res and lots of hp regen.

I have noticed a significant increase in my survivability. Tank them machine gun tentacle biatches and rhoas no probs.

STarted using enduring cry and molten shell which both help a lot.

Overall i am happy with the revised build (spent 22 regret tho...) lolz.

I have had a look at the other EK builds which go to IR - it is an option - you gain more armour. But u lose out on the +5 all res and life regen, lose the body and soul nodes and shield nodes.

Its a balance and something which you should decide for yourself.

For me, i like my build more because i had fun making it, changing it as i lvled and then changing it again in the end game.

Ultimately it feels like my own.

Hope you like it.




I played quite a bit of closed beta and tested a fair few builds and ultimately liked summoner. SO come OB, i decided to make a summoner with using EK as my main dps. However as i got higher lvl i realised that i was only really using skele totems in group play for the most part. Therefore i chose to respec out of summoner points and made my char into a tanky mofo instead (hence the title).

I would say it has been successful - i do fairly good dps, solo low lvl maps efficiently no probs, haven't died, am tanky and made it to lvl 85 (rank 60 something, currently on HC ladder) on my first OB char - while juggling a full time job n real life stuff. Having looked on the forums, most EK builds are usually shadow and thus crit/ dps orientated. My thoughts are to edge more towards survivability rather than dps - your EK and bear traps scale very well when they lvl anyway - no need to go overboard with the dps - however going overboard with the HP and armour will keep you alive.

Plus if you go overboard with DPS rather than survivability, you are most likely to crit and kill yourself with a physical reflect pack. Not good for HC.

Remember.......you don't do any dps if you are dead!


EK for AOE
Bear trap for single target
Vulnerability curse - increases both EK and bear trap dmg
Skele totem - for protection when needed
Eldritch battery - for being an aura whore and giving ridiculous mana regen - helps so much
Lightning warp - for the LOLs......actually it has saved me from dying once when surrounded.
Enduring cry - for man mode, up in packs of mobs faces
Molten shell - for extra armour, + man mode

Inner force increases the effect of all buffs on you - this means granite flasks, quicksilver flasks and more importantly Auras.

- determination - phat armour buff
- hatred - phat physical dps buff
- discipline - for big mana pool = aura whore
- clarity - essential for mana regen
- grace - for bit more survivability

Misc Auras:
- purity (while i was leveling)
- vitality (i keep this lvling in my offhand shield - had to swap it in the other day on a blood magic map - remember to do this)

Bandit quests:
normal - 40hp
cruel - increased physical dmg
merc - skill point (if i started again, i would probably pick up the endurance charge instead - up to you)

Leveling + skill tree

Early (1 - 30's):

Your aim throughout this build is essentially to stack HP, then armour, picking up a bit of spell dmg and cast speed along the way.

I used a shadow to get to glyph wall twice, just to get 2 bear trap gems. Its better to do this earlier rather than later.
You pick up EK from glyph wall with the witch.

Pick up the nodes along the right of the witch start, get them hp and ES nodes, get the big dex node so u can lvl EK, bear traps then get the rest of the HP nodes there. Once you get discipline you should pick up eldritch battery. The chaos resist node is important because chaos hurts, especially when you don't have any on your gear.

I used purity during lvling because my resists were crappy - later on when your gear catches up and you cap resists just with gear (i came to this stage in merciless) then you can swap purity with determination (get that phat armour buff!).

Keep a determination & vitality gem lvling in your offhands - you will need them when you higher lvl.

For AOE dps you can use freezing pulse +/- LMP at first, i think around 30ish EK becomes stronger. Upto you. Single target if u dont have the dex for bear traps, you can use ice spear/ fireball/ firestorm - whatever gets the job done).

Then start working to the left, picking up all the HP nodes.

Mid game (until 60's):

Work your way to the templar tree, pick up inner force & big dex node, go up to pick up the nice big 18% hp node, work along the outer edge then into the templar tree, getting all them HP nodes, picking up body and soul on the way then get prestigitation. Pick up the big dex node on the way to templar.

Late game (60's - end game)

Pick up the 2nd body and soul in the top left corner, get them shield passives (+30% res when using a shield) then usually your res are capped just with gear and you can swap purity for determination. Now your armour is pretty phat and you have a high hp pool.

You don't really need the ES nodes on right of witch start so i specced out of them and got to the right side through the x3 5% spell dmg nodes instead (more useful).

I also got to the left side of the witch tree by going through lord of the dead, saving myself 3 points (which i might pick up later), which go towards getting into mara tree.

I then went down into the mara tree, picking up elemental adaptation, then going into mara tree, got the regen node, extra res node and life, then back round for the armour nodes.

I also picked up an endurance charge, by templar

This is at 85 - current lvl (this was prior to my current heavy respec - if u want to see my current build with conduit then please check the beginning of the thread in the revised build +1 section)

Plan for 90+ - TBC, gonna get more endurance charges, avoid cast interruption, then maybe pick up some cast speed/ spell dmg nodes by witch - havent decided yet tho :)

Maybe something like this.

Gear n skill links

My gear is average at best - but it gets the job done.

Of note is i use an amethyst flask - for those brown coloured adrenaline moments (a fair few) - Amethyst is very useful tho until you get good chaos res on your gear.

Auras - determination/ hatred/ discipline/ clarity/ grace


My thoughts/ considerations/ Misc.

I have:
- 147% increased armour, and 104% increased ES (lots more mana).
- 249% increased hp
- +30% all res from using a shield (can spec out of this once my res on gear becomes better)
- total of +65% all res from passives, greater flexibility on gear allowing you more opportunities to stack chaos res instead
- 17k armour with determination
- 21k armour with molten shell
- 3k evasion (i guess a little helps more than none).

Having changed my shield to lioneyes remorse, i have gained so much more armour.
However, i lost a lot of ES (and therefore mana) from my previous shield - had to respec a point to mana, and got a mana regen ring which helps tremendously.

I started using chain in my 5L.
The rationale behind this:
- Chain is awesome because it destroys packs.
- quality chain adds projectile speed, helping your knives/ ninja stars fly further
- It also effectively halves your dps, splitting it between all the chaining projectiles.
- This works in your favour because armour is much more effective VS small hits compared to large hits.
- Therefore if your EK dps is really high (e.g with no chain/fork + stacking iron will etc) and you get physical reflected, your armour will have less of a damage reduction effect "proportionally".
- Conversely - with chain...the opposite, you get the picture.

This is the most fun char that i have made. My previous wander/ spork totems/ pure summoners/ melee sweeper don't compare.

Comments/ suggestions welcome

MulletMoustache - GMT timezone
Last edited by kudos888 on Mar 22, 2013, 8:26:49 AM
Is there an obvious reason that i didnt notice that you dont just play Marauder ?
Cuz he is ugly as f**k and when he is standing there - he is peering up into the sky as if he is retarded.

Plus i was a summoner when i started and specced out of that into EK.
MulletMoustache - GMT timezone
Last edited by kudos888 on Feb 20, 2013, 9:59:34 AM
I actualy totally agree with the retarded look of an fad ass running around with an hammer punching random zombies.
TheOppan wrote:
I actualy totally agree with the retarded look of an fad ass running around with an hammer punching random zombies.

Lol each to their own.
MulletMoustache - GMT timezone
Last edited by kudos888 on Feb 19, 2013, 7:51:05 AM
Thinking of getting some quality gems.

Any1 got any quality ek/ bear traps??

MulletMoustache - GMT timezone
can u post ur current hp/dps? also i heard projectile weakness> vulnerability but im not 100% sure if thats true
IGN Crakk
I have 5.3k Hp

Ek- 3k Dps
Bear trap - 20k dps

Just bought new shield, I'll update post with some new images if I can figure out how.
MulletMoustache - GMT timezone
maryn wrote:
can u post ur current hp/dps? also i heard projectile weakness> vulnerability but im not 100% sure if thats true

Projectile weakness is good, but can push mobs back out of range of your ek, which is annoying and reduces your life leech.
Projectile weakness also does not help with bear traps.

On the other hand, vulnerability increases dmg of ek AND bear traps AND minions (not really important but still)...
MulletMoustache - GMT timezone
MulletMoustache - GMT timezone

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