[3.0] Tri-Curse MoM Essence Drain/Contagion (HC) - Inya's Epiphany
Hello! Been a while since I made my first build guide but I would like to put out a build based around the new unique Inya's Epiphany. Theoretically, there is no content this build shouldn't be able to do: T15s, Guardians, Shaper, Uber-Atziri, even the dreaded Hall of Grandmasters is possible! But it will require some fairly heavy investment and skillful use on the part of the player. Let's get started! :)
* Great as a league starter as it's inexpensive to get started and can scale up tremendously with investment.
* Theoretically this build is viable for all content in the game. It will require heavy investment and skillful play, but ED has been proven to be highly effective against Shaper and Uber-Atziri, even in Hardcore. It's even been known to clear Hall of Grandmasters!
* With Mind Over Matter and a very good health pool, we're very tanky and utilizing a tri-curse setup, this is an extremely safe build.
* Reflect is not an issue as we deal Chaos damage.
* ED builds are not very fast in group play and feels slow relative to the burst damage of most other builds.
* ED builds do not have the highest clear speed, but are decently fast. However, not your first choice if you're pushing ladder.
* Not beginner friendly. This build requires proper character placement, good use of flasks, and good timing in your attacks and curses.
There are many ways you can level your character and if you have a method you feel comfortable with, by all means use what works for you. I am going to recommend using
Every support gem that we can use with Essence Drain is also viable for Blight and it also benefits from nearly every damage node we pick up for our main build, sans the Projectile based nodes. A lot of players have a poor view of Blight but it is surprisingly strong. The biggest error players make when using the skill is that they tend to channel too long until the enemy is dead rather than applying the degen and letting it do its work while you move on. It'll take some getting used to to get the feel of it but it works really well once you're comfortable and it provides a great transition to ED/Contagion.
For supports you can use: All of which work well.
You can start using Essence Drain as soon as you acquire the gem at level 12, but I would recommend against it as it'll feel pretty bad with a poor AoE clear for Contagion. It can be done but it is painful to level from the beginning.
Recommended Leveling Uniques:
An extremely powerful wand that you can usually get for very cheap. +1 Skill Gems, Cast Speed, Spell Damage, life and life regen. Very strong and you can use it immediately once you enter Lioneye's Watch.
A very strong helm which provides significant elemental resistances. Many players use this helm during the entire leveling process before switching to an end game helm.
A 6-link armor. If you're comfortable leveling then this'll make it exceptionally quick as your damage will be immensely strong for the leveling content. There are no added stats so be sure to get your life and resistances from other gear slots.
Immune to Freeze, 20% Movement Speed, and it can be used from level 1. It's a great item.
The Skill Tree:
Here I'll link a series of Skill Trees for what I would generally recommend for leveling this character in Hardcore. I tend to go a bit more defensive but please feel free to adjust it to your comfort levels taking more damage nodes earlier and life/defensive nodes later.
Leveling Tree 1:
Standard picking up Chaos damage to start as well as life as soon as we are able. We path down from the three-way fork to pick up some Damage Over Time augmentations and skill effect durations.
We then proceed north to pick up Nullification which grants us a bit of life as well as +8%
Resistances. Very nice node. From there we divert slightly to the right to pick up Blood Drinker for the life; sadly the Attack Damage Leeched as Life doesn't apply, but ED has an implicit property of granting life so it's still a great set of nodes to take this early.
Leveling Tree 2:
Here is where some people might want to invest elsewhere. I tend to go for Whispers of Doom as quickly as possible as it provides us with both Enfeeble and Temporal Chains (substitute vulnerability with either if you'd like) which is great both from an offensive and defensive perspective. As noted below, we do not pick up Blast Radius because the two point investment is not justified for the increase in AoE we receive as we don't really benefit from increased Area Damage;
Contagion's damage in the later stages is based on your Essence Drain and is not increased by Area Damage modifiers. However, your damage should be pretty good without needing more damage nodes at this time.
Leveling Tree 3:
Here I would recommend going straight for Whispers of Doom (often times before even picking up Occultist's Dominion or Heart and Soul, but up to you and your comfort level). After that it's time to invest in some damage nodes. I would recommend going up to Atrophy and then picking up Corruption going to the right. We want to get to the big nodes as quickly as possible to maximize our skill points efficiency.
Leveling Tree 4:
Here we pick up all the remaining life nodes for our build giving us a healthy +186%. This should be further augmented with Jewels (+Life, +Mana, +Spell/Chaos/Projectile Damage, etc.) as well as the remaining AoE nodes. This will help with Blasphemy as well as our Orb of Storms CoH setup (see gem recommendations below).
End Game Skill Tree (Level 95):
As we are a very curse heavy build using three very powerful curses to augment what is already one of the most powerful skills in the game, it makes sense to increase their potency by taking the convenient nodes which increase curse effectiveness. This helps tremendously against bosses and allows ED to farm very hard hitting bosses; T15s, Guardians, Atziri, Izaro, U-Atziri, and even Shaper.
Pick up Mind Over Matter when you feel you have sufficient equipment to do so as well as picking up the Reduced Mana Reserved nodes. This will increase its effectiveness by allowing us to have a bigger mana pool to draw from even with our reserving Enfeeble on a Blasphemy setup and using Clarity.
After that, Potency of Will and Alchemist are your two next best options. It is also beneficial to take Potency of Will earlier if you want an increase in your damage as well as making your CoH curses last longer once they're out of your OoS range. This also will increase the damage done by the spread of your contagion.
You'll notice that we skip Blast Radius. This is because we don't benefit from the Area Damage and the two point investment isn't efficient for the Area of Effect we would gain.
We pass underneath Shamanistic Fury instead of going down from Whispers of Doom to gain an additional 10 Str. This is for both a little bit of extra life but also to help with gem requirements. You can change it if you'd like, the point investment is the same.
You can make adjustments as you see fit, of course. Potency of Will isn't a bad choice. Alchemist is very strong, there is a variation where we invest in that instead of Sniper (or you can take away the Jewel slots if you don't have anything worthwhile yet). The choice is ultimately up to you.
We will be using Trickster as it is the best option available to us now that ES has been nerfed into the ground and Occultist doesn't offer any significant benefits to us relative to Trickster.
Normal - Patient Reaper: This provides a strong damage boost while giving added survivability through increased recovery rate.
Cruel - Weave the Arcane: Here we get a great boost to our Mind Over Matter in we boost our total mana pool, the mana recovery rate, as well as the potential for gaining large chunks of mana back after using a skill. (Shield Charge should make this quick). It also will give us a flat damage mitigation for 4 seconds once we spend 200 mana, so this should be up pretty frequently.
Merciless/Uber - Here it comes down to personal preference and what your character is equipped to do. If you prefer more damage then you can take Swift Killer for increased DoT for both Power and Frenzy Charges, increase our max Power and Frenzy Charges, as well as a chance to gain charges on kill.
If you prefer to be defensive first then I would recommend Ghost Dance. This gives a flat 5% chance to dodge both attacks and spells. It also gives added movement speed if you're on full energy shield but that's not something we will really concern ourselves with. But, nice bonus to have.
As we do not benefit from Crit Multi, I would recommend the two skill points from killing all of the bandits as the mana regeneration and elemental resistances don't seem to be worth sacrificing two skill points. But, it wouldn't be a bad choice.
Ideally, you would want a Delirium enchanted Sai.
This adds Decay Damage to our Essence Drain and provides a great damage boost and makes clearing much faster. Additional castings do not stack, but outside of bosses or Chaos resistant enemies you shouldn't need to.
We use a Sai for the implicit 6% Block Chance to further boost our defenses.
You would aim for Spell Damage and + Gems, if you're lucky. You can also craft either Spell Damage or Increased Damage Over Time with a Level 3 Leo.
Second Weapon Recommendation:
This is a great alternative and might be preferable for some players if they prefer the added AoE. It provides a great bonus to Chaos Damage as well as increasing the duration of our Chaos Skill effects.
Here you want more life, spell damage, chaos damage, and resistances. You can also get added mana and mana regeneration to help boost Mind Over Matter.
The rest of your gear should be a combination of rare gear to get as much life as possible while capping all your resistances (preferably to 169 total to negate Elemental Weakness map mod for free pack size) and any other relevant stats, such as Int/Dex/Str (for gems and Mana/Life), and any armor we can get is also nice.
Doedre's Damning Paua Ring
This is what gives us our third curse (second coming from the skill tree via the Whispers of Doom node). Ideally, since this is Hardcore, your first two curses should be Enfeeble and Temp. Chains, but you can swap out either for Vulnerability to suit your comfort level.
This allows for some pretty powerful synergies and provides a great boost to our damage if utilized correctly. Since we're life based, more life the better. The 5% Int gives us some additional mana for our MoM, and it gives an increased damage multiplier per Power Charge. In the above skill tree we have a total of 5 (1 from the Witch area and the other from the Trickster Ascendancy).
For general clearing, the Trickster's Swift Killer should be sufficient to maintain maximum Power Charges. However, by itself is not reliable in boss encounters. Here we will use an Orb of Storms (OoS) with a Power Charge on Crit (PCoC) to both provide us with a significant damage boost but it will also apply two of our curses. Coupled with the Witch node which grants 4% Spell Damage per Power Charge and the Swift Killer's 5% Increased Damage over Time per Power Charge, it all adds up to a big damage boost to what is already a very powerful skill.
While Inya's is our primary set of boots, and we want to get that as soon as we reasonably can, we do have a good alternative which offers very good defenses, high movement speed and is typically very inexpensive
This has been nerfed slightly in 3.0 giving less of a boost to Damage Over Time, but this will act as our third curse in boss fights where we can't easily gain our Power Charges. Remove your Vulnerability Gem from the setup and insert a Power Charge on Crit to gain full Power Charges quickly and use this to apply a strong Vulnerability. You will need to be relatively close, however, as the flask itself does not benefit from the added area of effect nodes we pick up on our tree. But, with Enfeeble and Temp Chains this shouldn't be particularly dangerous for most encounters.
This gives us a 10% increase of life, up to 60% Spell Damage, and some lightning resistance.
It also has the benefit of providing some Spell Block for some added protection.
Defensive Mechanics & Curses:
Mind Over Matter (30% of damage is taken from Mana before Life)
As always, the best defense is a solid understanding of game mechanics. With that aside, we have a very healthy life pool with 186% increased maximum life. This works very well with Mind Over Matter as we have a very strong mana pool (+ 125%) and mana regeneration (150% Inc. Mana Regeneration Rate). This increases our effective HP significantly and our survivability along with it.
In addition, we also have a Wither Spell Totem which both provides a damage boost and slows the affected enemies.
We also use Shield Charge linked with Fortify for additional damage mitigation.
This is the most crucial aspect of our build as our curses provide significant offensive and defensive bonuses. We will be utilizing Enfeeble, Temporal Chains, and Vulnerability. This will mitigate the damage done to us with Enfeeble, slow the enemy down significantly with Temp Chains, as well as greatly boosting our already very high damage (Temp. Chains and Vulnerability).
We will make use of Blasphemy for one of our curses and a Curse On Hit setup with Orb of Storms to apply the other two. I would recommend Temp. Chains be linked with Blasphemy as you would want to slow down anything that is within melee range and I would suggest that it's more important to have Enfeeble linked with the CoH setup as it will allow ranged attackers to be less damaging even if we're not in Blasphemy range. Temp. Chains will also provide a great defensive and offensive boost for general clearing if you're not keen on constantly applying a curse to each rare pack with our CoH OoS. You can experiment and find which is the best balance for your own preferences.
Here I am less certain on the main ED links as I haven't experimented with the new support gems and poison may or may not be viable so I chose not to scale for that effect. (Also, since The Consuming Dark no longer provides any Spell Damage, that is a less appealing option) I am open to better suggestions if someone is able to provide a better setup but I shall give what I believe works best.
Edit: I apologize but apparently the gem links in the forums don't seem to work all that well for me anymore. I've noticed twice that they've been changed after I've fixed them (without removing or altering the character from which I linked them from), and both times they were fixed and appeared correctly only to later be changed to something else completely or vanished. I will simply cite the recommended gem links with the relevant explanation below. Sorry!
Essence Drain: - 6 Link
Essence Drain - Void Manipulation - Controlled Destruction - Efficacy - Faster/Slower Projectiles* - Swift Affliction
*Faster or Slower Projectiles will be to your individual comfort level. Faster will feel better and smoother for general gameplay, but it will not give as much of a damage boost as Slower Projectiles as SP has a more multiplier as opposed to FP which simply has an increased boost.
If you're fortunate enough to stumble into an Empower Level 3/4, substitute that with your least effective gem for an enormous damage boost as spell damage is scaled off the level of the gem itself. Increasing the gem level 2/3 levels is a gigantic increase.
As always, I would encourage you to experiment with the links and see what provides the biggest damage boost for however many links you have available. I'm not particularly adept with Path of Building so I can't say for sure what is the absolute ideal, but Void Manipulation is available very early, and Controlled Destruction is great because we don't crit so there is no penalty to using it while it provides a high amount of spell damage.
Curse on Hit/Orb of Storms (Power Charge subbed in): 1st 4-Link
Curse on Hit - Orb of Storms - Enfeeble - Vulnerability/Power Charge on Crit.
This is how we will apply our other two curses. Orb of Storms should have a pretty big radius with the amount of Increased Area of Effect we take from the skill tree. The only change you will need to make for tougher bosses in which we can't reasonably sustain our Power Charges is to remove the Vulnerability curse and substitute the following gem and flask:
Power Charge on Crit & Witchfire Brew Stibnite Flask
This will allow us to gain our power charges (Inya's Epiphany boots helps with bad luck) for increased damage without needing to rely on Swift Killer as it can be difficult in many boss encounters. It will also allow us to keep our three curse setup. You will need to be a bit closer to the boss as the flask does not benefit from increased AoE from the tree.
Contagion: 2nd 4-Link
Contagion - Inc. AoE - Faster Casting - Vaal Lightning Trap
This is what will spread our Essence Drain to clear packs of mobs relatively quickly. It is a two cast clear so not as fast as some speed clearing builds, but it'll work very well and clear enemies reliably. It will also travel quite far if your damage is sufficiently high and it can clear several screens away making it highly effective and incredibly safe. It even bypasses Proximity Shield if the contagion is spread.
We use Vaal Lightning Trap for the added damage bonus from the shock applied to the enemy.
Blasphemy + Clarity 3rd 4-Link
Blasphemy - Temporal Chains - Clarity - Vaal Haste/Grace
Temporal Chains will be our aura'd curse. We supplement the area of effect considerably so it should be applied in most instances. Combined with our Wither Totem (typically for boss encounters) and our increased curse effectiveness nodes, many enemies will feel like they're almost stationary compared to normal. (Bosses have an implicit curse resistance but we mitigate that with our heavy curse setup and augmentations. The difference will still be very noticeable.)
Clarity will help sustain our mana and help keep it at full or near to it so we can get the full effect of Mind Over Matter when we need it.
For the 4th link you have the option of using a supplemental skill such as Vaal Grace/Haste however you see fit. Or, you can potentially add in a second curse to Blasphemy so you don't have to switch out Vulnerability for PCoC and use Witchfire Brew. However, be careful as this will reserve more mana and take away from the efficacy of Mind Over Matter. Weigh your options carefully!
Wither Totem: 1st 3-Link
Spell Totem - Wither - Faster Casting
This is a very powerful little setup used by ED'ers for ages now. It provides a lesser version of Temp Chains (it functions in addition to Temp Chains... it's very nice.) as well as making the target more vulnerable to Chaos Damage. A must have for us!
Movement Skill: 2nd 3-Link
Shield Charge - Faster Attacks - Fortify
This will provide us with very quick movement to save us from a bad spot as well as grant us the fortify buff for added defense when we strike an enemy with Shield Charge.
Thank you for taking the time to read my guide! If you have any suggestions, tips, corrections, or questions, please don't hesitate to ask and I'll do my best to respond!
I wish everyone the best in 3.0! :)
Last edited by JamesMMA on Aug 21, 2017, 9:55:41 PM
Last bumped on Nov 19, 2017, 9:15:17 PM
on Aug 3, 2017, 8:21:45 AM
There is no "more multiplier" on the boots. It's only increased.
Can't really comment on the guide itself besides of that, since I have yet to try ED.
I will definitly do so with 3.0 and I like the triple curse setup you are running.
on Aug 3, 2017, 1:08:06 PM
Ah. Indeed you are correct, sir. My apologies, that's my mistake. I must have misread. Well, that's unfortunate. A 1.25 multiplier would have been nice, but I would guess the damage is still pretty good. I don't know if a Delirium Sai would be best or if a good rare dagger would be better because I heard that Decay no longer gets spread via your Contagion, but I couldn't find anything about it in the notes. Google isn't being cooperative either so either my google skills need work or I'm hearing silly rumors.
Thank you for correcting my oversight! I'll work on making it a bit neater now that I'm back home. :)
I hope Harbinger goes well for you! Best of luck tomorrow!
Edit: I just realized I'm a dummy. We would need a 5L to utilize a CoH/OoS setup to also include a PCoC coupled with two curses. I was way too tired when I wrote this, I'm so sorry. The concept should still be viable and I'll update this as best I can to include more detail and linked items/gems.
I can still make it work but it would need to incorporate Witchfire Brew if we wanted to keep the PCoC for boss encounters. With Shaper every bit of damage counts, so it would work with a little bit of switching.
Last edited by JamesMMA on Aug 3, 2017, 2:12:37 PM
on Aug 3, 2017, 1:55:19 PM
Phew! Just added a lot of new sections, made some explanations a bit clearer, fixed some grammatical errors (as well as Mr. Jaga's very astute observation, thank you, sir!) and added some gems and other item links which should make it much more readable. It took me a fair bit of time so I hope players get some use out of it! :)
I will also be adding in a better Skill Tree link as well as potential leveling trees once poeplanner updates with the 3.0 release tree.
Edit - Oh! I almost forgot. I will be added in a section for Pantheon once I know the complete set of options and will gladly listen to any recommendations made by the community. :)
Double Edit - Corrected some items now showing in the correct place, some items not showing up at all, and made sure everything is where it should be.
Last edited by JamesMMA on Aug 3, 2017, 4:31:58 PM
on Aug 3, 2017, 3:37:14 PM
Will being trying it as a starter build, unless someone starts calling me at the last minute
Last edited by Spythe on Aug 3, 2017, 3:58:29 PM
on Aug 3, 2017, 3:58:05 PM
I apologize sincerely for the lack of upkeep on this guide. I died at level 72 early on Day 2 to a Blade Flurry from a Strand Map boss (Zana map) when he was facing the opposite direction and that kind of took the wind out of my sails a bit, though I remade the character, I haven't leveled him up again completely. My internet doesn't cooperate the best and is prone to getting me killed. Also my playing time is relatively limited as my job now takes up more and more of my time as well as causing some tendinitis so playing a lot just makes that worse. So I apologize I haven't been able to bring this build to its fullest potential myself. I hope better able players are able to make greater use of it than I was. :)
I also must apologize for some errors. I received a very kind message from another forum member letting me know of some gem link errors displaying the wrong gems or simply them being removed. This happened twice during the first day of 3.0, and both times I fixed it to where it was showing the correct gems, only later to discover that they reverted to something else, shifted down one, or were deleted. Since the thread didn't gain much traction I was content to let it float away into the abyss, but even if one person finds it useful I'm happy to invest the time to make it more readable and useful for them.
I've added the correct gem links and also changed them from when I made it prior to the start of 3.0 and incorporated the new support gems. I've also added updated skill trees as well as leveling trees for my recommended progression. This will carry you reliably to the end game. I did the entire Oriath content blind without knowing anything about the new content mechanically. (Though, to be fair, Ivarius and Kitava in A5 nearly gave me a coronary, Doedre in A8 almost killed me several times before a friend told me to hit the valve (D'oh! I thought it was there simply to engage the fight), and Kitava in A10 I was helped significantly by a group.) Point being, this is a very safe and very powerful build even if you're not the best player (which I certainly am not!).
I hope everyone is having fun with the new content as GGG did an unbelievable job with the 3.0 release and I wish everyone the best in their PoE endeavors! :)
on Aug 21, 2017, 9:32:46 PM
your build indeed floated in the abyss but its back now and helped me to get a great character :D
i started a character soon ago and like to comment as i really love this build
atm im on lvl 69 and just finished solo uber lab
for this run i used a consuming dark dagger for additional poison damage.
the only expensive item i used was a 6link cherrubim's maleficence, but i am sure this would have worked with a 5l too as i used a empower gem instead of pierce to get my poor lvl16/17 a bit better.
the rares i used did only cost about 1-5c each to get some life and resistances.
the rest was exactly as mentioned in the build, with the last leveling tree together with MoM (and without witchfire + pcoc, which should make this fight even easier)
together with Swift killer this Setup gave me enough damage to easily kill argus and izaro.
on Sep 20, 2017, 6:43:21 AM
Decay has not been spread with contagion for a while. I have tested it with a level 1 ED with a decay weapon on standard fighting multiple weak monsters that ED could not kill. ED +Decay dropped the first monster fast, but the remaining monsters just laughed.
on Sep 25, 2017, 11:37:48 PM
on Nov 19, 2017, 9:15:17 PM