[3.8] Level with FLICKER STRIKE from LV28 - LEAGUE START


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ANNOUNCEMENTS

3.8 UPDATE: The build should work just fine for Blight League. Slayer was nerfed slightly, but it isn't a big deal. Note that you can play a similar build as any character class, but finding the right gems is easiest as duelist.

If you have questions, please post on this forum instead of messaging me.

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INTRODUCTION

Typically, flicker strike is known as an "endgame skill" where you really need to level up using a completely different build, then switch into Flicker at roughly LV60. This is because Flicker Strike consumes frenzy charges every use, which is not easy to sustain at low levels.

However, new changes to flicker strike (15% chance to gain a frenzy charge on hit) and melee (can hit multiple enemies) allows us to flicker easily from LV28. This is easiest with Duelist in my opinion.

This guide is about getting you started with Flicker Strike. Later, you can switch to a flicker build of your choosing (or any other build).

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GAMEPLAY VIDEOS

LV91 3-Emblem Boss Fight

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MiIcQ38cVts

LV86 UPDATE

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yZTIdgdbEAI

LV28 SIMULATING THE BUILD BEFORE 3.7

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2N1PamHOAEg
I am using a 10% frenzy on hit synthesized chest to simulate the new flicker strike, to see if I can sustain charges. The new flicker will have melee splash shotgun + 15% frenzy on hit, so this video is an underestimate of the frenzy sustainability.

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GENERIC LEVELING TIPS
Spoiler
If you need some extra strength and/or intelligence, get some on your amulet or rings. Try to get movement speed on your boots. Otherwise, just get AS MUCH LIFE AND RESISTS as you can on all gear. Try to maintain 75% elemental resistances. If possible, get some "adds XX physical damage to attacks" mods on rings and amulet for extra DPS.

Flasks are important. While leveling, you should have at least 1 life flask, 1 mana flask, and 1 quicksilver flask. Make sure you keep upgrading your life and mana flasks as you level. Pick up any life and mana flask upgrades that drop. You can also buy them from Nessa. Give them a transmutation orb and augment orb for extra bonus mods. Unfreeze, unbleed, and movement speed are the best mods on flasks.


If you cannot find any good weapons but you want more DPS, the rustic sash recipe is a good one to know. Simply vendor a blacksmith whetstone, any weapon, and a rare (yellow) rustic sash. It works for a magic (blue) rustic as well, but you get higher phys rolls with a rare one. Try to find a weapon with 1.45 attack speed or higher. If possible, giving the weapon 20% quality using 4 blacksmith whetstones before vendoring is a good idea. If you get to Act 4, unlock the crafting recipe for attack speed and craft it on your weapon (see crafting recipes list below).



CRAFTING RECIPES

These two crafting recipes are really nice for leveling. Once you find the recipe, create a hideout if you don't already have one, and you can use the crafting bench to craft these mods for a cheap cost. The item will need an open affix for the mod to be craftable.

Act 2: The Caverns -- (10–14)% increased Movement Speed on Boots -- 3x Orb of Augmentation
Act 4: The Dried Lake -- (8–10)% increased Attack Speed on Weapons -- 6x Orb of Alteration

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HOW TO LEVEL FROM LV1 to LV28 (without Flicker Strike)

Flickering before LV28 is basically impossible, so you will need to find another skill.
Spoiler
When you first get to town, talk to Tarkleigh for the quest reward. I suggest grabbing a Cleave. Cleave was buffed significantly in 3.7, so use it as your main skill. Dual-wield 2 one-handed melee weapons with the highest DPS you can find. Weapons with a high attack speed is very nice as well (at least 1.4 attacks per second).

Then, do the "Mercy Mission" quest to get a quicksilver flask and Ruthless support gem as your reward. Link the ruthless to your Cleave. Other than "Mercy Mission", skip the optional quests that do not reward you a passive point. Quests you don't want to skip: https://pathofexile.gamepedia.com/Book_of_Skill

See the "GENERIC LEVELING TIPS" section above if you need a bit more guidance. Otherwise, just follow the story line and get ready to flicker at LV28 or LV38. To prepare, see the following sections.

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HOW TO FLICKER FROM LV28 (1 unique item required)

LV28 is the earliest possible level to begin Flickering. However, it requires 1 cheap unique item, so you will need to be in a trade league and be willing to trade.
Spoiler
PATH OF BUILDING

This is purposely a little past LV28:
https://pastebin.com/ZKiRkvu5

PASSIVE TREE

www.poeurl.com/cAte

Summary of the tree:
-- life
-- life regen to counter the blood rage life degen
-- dual-wield sword damage nodes
-- onslaught nodes for speed
-- weapon range for more AOE
-- frenzy charge for damage

REQUIRED WEAPON

Lakishu's Blade comes with the multistrike gem socketed, a necessary support gem for flicker strike. Multistrike is usually only usable after LV38, but this sword allows you to use it at LV28.


This sword is cheap. Buy one from here (Change settings to your league):
https://www.pathofexile.com/trade/search/Standard/apPX3Te

Try to buy one that is 3-linked, or at least 3-socketed. If it isn't 3-linked, you have to link it yourself. If you cannot get a 3-link, a 2-link can suffice-- just drop the melee splash or melee phys support gem.

1. Use any blacksmith's whetstones you have to give the sword quality. More the better.
2. Use Jeweler's orbs until the number of sockets is 3
3. Use Orb of Fusings until all 3 sockets are linked.
4. Use Chromatic orbs until you have 1 green and 2 red sockets

REQUIRED GEMS

In Lakishu's Blade, socket Flicker strike + melee splash + melee phys. This is your main skill. Starting 3.7, melee splash is not necessary but it's nice because it shotguns if you hit multiple enemies. Melee phys support can be replaced with Ruthless or Maim, especially if you are struggling with mana (these have lower mana multipliers).


You also need Frenzy and Blood rage. Frenzy provides frenzy charges when you happen to run out. Blood rage provides a 25% chance to gain a frenzy charge on kill. At the very very minimum, Flicker Strike, Blood Rage, and Frenzy gems are absolutely necessary.

Duelist can obtain all 5 from quest rewards or from the NPC vendor:
Act 1: The Caged Brute - Nessa (Flicker Strike and Melee Splash)
Act 2: Sharp and Cruel - Yeena (Melee Phys Damage)
Act 2: The Root of the Problem - Yeena (Frenzy and Blood Rage)

ADDITIONAL GEAR

Dual-wielding swords is recommended because of attack speed and phys damage bonuses. Grab a 2nd sword with the highest physical DPS you can find. You could get a 2nd Lakishu's Blade, but it's not required. Otherwise, just make sure you have good flasks, gear with life and resists, and movement speed on your boots. See "GENERIC LEVELING TIPS" section above for more info.

OPTIONAL BUT HIGHLY RECOMMENDED GEMS

Herald of Ash, Herald of Purity, and War Banner for extra damage.

leap slam + faster attacks for mobility

A 3-link Frenzy for single target damage (Frenzy + melee phys + ruthless) is pretty strong because Frenzy got a buff in 3.7. Just use this against bosses.

Ancestral Protector totem for extra damage vs Bosses

Quests/Vendors to obtain these gems
Act 1: Mercy Mission - Nessa (Ruthless)
Act 1: Breaking Some Eggs - Nessa (War Banner, Ancestral Protector)
Act 1: The Caged Brute - Nessa (Leap Slam)
Act 2: Sharp and Cruel - Yeena (Faster Attacks)
Act 2: The Root of the Problem - Yeena (Herald of Ash, Frenzy, Herald of Purity)

FURTHER PROGRESSION

Important note that as you progress, the build becomes increasingly flexible. I'll give you a few suggestions, but my way isnt the only way, so build it however you want it.

Highly recommended set up is poachers Mark + blasphemy from LV31. You can get this from Clarissa or Siosa after completing Fixture of Fate quest in Act 3. You'll have to drop herald of ash or herald of purity, but you will get life and mana on hit, flask charges, and frenzy generation. When you get this set up, you can drop blood rage so you no longer degen. This set up isn't great for endgame usually, but it's really nice for leveling.

Add fortify gem to your leap slam at LV31. Cast-when-damage-taken + enfeeble is a good defensive setup from LV38.

Keep upgrading your flasks, and keep getting life and resists on your gear. After LV38, you dont need to use Lakishu's Blade if you dont want to. Just use the highest Phys-DPS one-hand swords u can find. For unique swords, the next big upgrade will be a Daresso's Passion at LV43 or Innsbury Edge at LV47. Eventually, get physical mana leech on 1 jewel, and drop the mana flask.

Try to find a 4-link for Frenzy, and 5 or 6 link for Flicker Strike if you can. Example additional support gems include maim, ruthless, and close combat.

When you complete the Labyrinth, take IMPACT then HEADSMAN. Then, if you are going crit with a non-crit weapon, take OVERWHELM 3rd. The last one can be BANE OF LEGENDS or MASTERFUL FORM. If you are not going to take OVERWHELM, then I suggest BANE OF LEGENDS and MASTERFUL FORM. To benefit from the MASTERFUL FORM, you can use an enduring cry or endurance charge on melee stun + leap slam. The other ascendancy nodes are good too though.

Continue to follow a dual-wield sword tree. If you decide to go crit slayer like me (Overwhelm ascendancy node), you could follow a tree like this:
www.poeurl.com/cAtd

I might use 2 Dreamfeathers in the endgame. This is a fast weapon with good Phys DPS. But I really want to try out the new Rebuke of the Vaal swords that got massive buffs in 3.7.



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HOW TO FLICKER FROM LV38 (SSF viable. No required unique items)

If you did not get a Lakishu's Blade for whatever reason (couldn't afford one, SSF, dislike trading), you can start Flickering at LV38 without any required unique items. At LV38, multistrike gem becomes available, so you no longer need a Lakishu's. This means you can use any melee weapon.
Spoiler
PATH OF BUILDING

These trees are for 1-hand or 2-hand swords. Alter the tree if you are using different weapons.

Dual-wield 1-hand swords: https://pastebin.com/kgUzsCsx
2-hand sword: https://pastebin.com/YxQTjmfk

PASSIVE TREE

These trees are for dual-wield 1-hand or 2-hand swords. Alter the tree if you are using different weapons.

Dual-wield 1-hand swords: www.poeurl.com/cAtf
2-hand sword: www.poeurl.com/cAtg

Summary of the tree:
-- life
-- life regen to counter the blood rage life degen
-- sword damage nodes (generic damage, not just phys)
-- onslaught nodes for speed
-- weapon range for more AOE
-- frenzy charge for damage

WEAPONS

Dual-wield or two-handed are both viable, and you don't necessarily need to stick to swords. Just make sure your passive tree matches your set up. For example, dont take two-hand sword nodes on the tree, and then dual-wield 2 axes. Note that the 2-hand option is a good choice if you plan on switching into Terminus Est.

Try to find high-phys-DPS weapons. If you cannot, then just use the rustic sash recipe shown in the "GENERIC LEVELING TIPS" above. If you are willing to trade, you can buy cheap weapons from here (change settings to your league):

one-hand: https://www.pathofexile.com/trade/search/Standard/LwKvBin
two-hand: https://www.pathofexile.com/trade/search/Standard/oolMwKIl

GEMS

Including multistrike, all gems in the game become available at LV38, so the build becomes much more flexible.

Main Flicker Strike 6-link in order of priority (Need 4-links minimum). Starting 3.7, melee splash is not necessary but it's nice because it shotguns if you hit multiple enemies. Melee phys support is the strongest, but it can be replaced with Ruthless or Maim, especially if you are struggling with mana (these have lower mana multipliers)

Frenzy provides frenzy charges when you happen to run out. A 3 or 4-link Frenzy is strrong enough for single target damage (Frenzy + melee phys + ruthless + maim) because Frenzy got a buff in 3.7. Just use this against bosses.

Poachers Mark + blasphemy for life and mana on hit, flask charges, and frenzy generation. This set up isn't great for endgame usually, but it's really nice for leveling. (Blood rage is an alternative, but it isn't as good for leveling I think)

Herald of Purity and War Banner for extra damage.

leap slam + faster attacks + fortify for mobility

Ancestral Protector totem for extra damage vs Bosses

Cast-when-damage-taken + enfeeble is a good defensive setup.

Quests/Vendors to obtain these gems:
Act 1: Mercy Mission - Nessa (Ruthless)
Act 1: Breaking Some Eggs - Nessa (War Banner, Ancestral Protector)
Act 1: The Caged Brute - Nessa (Flicker Strike, Melee Splash, Leap Slam, Maim)
Act 2: Sharp and Cruel - Yeena (Melee Phys Damage, Faster Attacks)
Act 2: The Root of the Problem - Yeena (Frenzy, Blood Rage, Herald of Ash, Frenzy, Herald of Purity)
Act 3: A Fixture of Fate - Clarissa (Fortify, Enfeeble, Poachers Mark, Blasphemy)
Act 4: The Eternal Nightmare (Cast when damage taken)

ADDITIONAL GEAR

Make sure you have good flasks, gear with life and resists, and movement speed on your boots. See "GENERIC LEVELING TIPS" section above for more info.

FURTHER PROGRESSION

Important note that as you progress, the build becomes increasingly flexible. I'll give you a few suggestions, but my way isnt the only way, so build it however you want it.

Keep upgrading your flasks, and keep getting life and resists on your gear. Maintain 75% elemental resistances. Just use the highest Phys-DPS weapons you can find. Eventually, get physical mana leech on 1 jewel, and drop the mana flask.

Try to find a 4-link for Frenzy, and 5 or 6 link for Flicker Strike if you can. Example additional support gems include maim, ruthless, and close combat.

When you complete the Labyrinth, take IMPACT then HEADSMAN. Then, if you are going crit with a non-crit weapon, take OVERWHELM 3rd. The last one can be BANE OF LEGENDS or MASTERFUL FORM. If you are not going to take OVERWHELM, then I suggest BANE OF LEGENDS and MASTERFUL FORM. To benefit from the MASTERFUL FORM, you can use an enduring cry or endurance charge on melee stun + leap slam. The other ascendancy nodes are good too though.

If you decide to go crit dual-wield sword slayer like me (Overwhelm ascendancy node), you could follow a tree like this:
www.poeurl.com/cp81

I might use 2 Dreamfeathers in the endgame. This is a fast weapon with good Phys DPS. But I really want to try out the new Rebuke of the Vaal swords that got massive buffs in 3.7.


Instead, if you decide to go with a 2-hand sword, you have the option to eventually transition into a Terminus Est, which is a popular endgame Flicker weapon. See tree below:
www.poeurl.com/cyBD


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LEGION JEWELS
Spoiler

Note that legion jewels will be difficult to obtain, now that Legion league is over.

I've been exploring the legion jewels, and I've made a rough conclusion about how to utilize them for my build. There are 5 types of legion jewels: glorious (red), lethal (orange), militant (green), elegant (white), and brutal (yellow).


The orange one is pretty good. The chances of you finding a good one is pretty high. To use it, you want to socket it in an area in the tree where you've already taken many nodes. The more nodes in the area, the bigger your bonus. It can give a lot of crit multi, life, and strength. I have one that gives 45% crit multi, 4% life, 20% phys damage, and ~45 strength, socketed right under the duelist area.

However, the best one in my opinion is the white one. This one takes some RNG to find a good one, but not too much. It can give you a ton of crit multi, damage, easy charge generation, life, and resists. The mod I like a lot is "10% chance to gain frenzy charge on hit". This can make flicker strike more smooth to play if you are like me and dont have frenzy-generation uniques (Oro's, terminus, red-trail). With this plus a 20% quality flicker, you will have 30% chance for frenzy on hit, which is quite nice. I've bought 15 of these white ones, and I have seen about 5 of them have frenzy on hit somewhere near my tree, so they are not that rare.

When you buy some, first, take as many jewel sockets as you can on your character. If you have multiple characters, that helps a lot. Then try each jewel in every slot. You can divine them if you want, and that will change their function completely, but divines and these jewels are about the same price, so I'd just buy a new one. If you think you found a good one, you will need to adjust your tree depending on the jewel you have. See what I did with my jewel below.



I had to respec a ton of nodes under the duelist area because some became trash (% armour, avoid chill, avoid shock, etc) while others became really good. The nodes in the circle used to give me life, damage, and +1 frenzy. Now they give me resists and all 3 charge generation. I was able to work out the routing efficiently enough.

Since I now have power charge on crit, I plan to get rid of assassin's mark on hit, and use enfeeble instead. Either enfeeble on hit gloves or CWDT enfeeble.


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ENDGAME SETUP & MY PERSONAL PROGRESSION (LEGION LEAGUE)
Spoiler

Pre-league plans

Spoiler
Note that this guide is not meant to guide you in the endgame. But I'll still post the POB and tree links as I progress. This section will be updated after league starts.

Below is my initial plan dual-wielding Rebuke of the Vaal swords. The build is a bit different from what I suggested in the above sections. It requires some respeccing of the tree, and some unique items. This set up has 8 frenzy charges. The POB is missing some new gems, including Flesh & Stone and Close Combat.

Few things to note. Endurance charges come from Leap slam + endurance charrge on melee stun. Physical mana leech is necessary on 1 jewel. The assassin mark curse comes from my Shaper ring. Alira for bandits. Ascendancy order is Impact, Headsman, Overwhelm, then Masterful Form.

https://pastebin.com/dPHcJCGq
www.poeurl.com/cqAu



LV91 UPDATE

I added a video (see video section). I changed the tree because I found out I get more life and DPS this way. But I needed life and mana leech on jewels. The Lethal Pride jewel is giving me about 50 strength, 45% crit multi, 4% life, and 20% phys damage. It's pretty good. Out of all the legion jewel types, Lethal Pride is the easiest to find a nice one IMHO.

I finally got a 6link. I dont even need it since I'm doing so much damage already. The frenzy helm actually dropped, which was super lucky. I have about 55% atk/spell dodge now. LV1 precision is a nice bonus (keep it at lv1).

I still need quality on flasks. I want to get a shaper ring + mark of the elder because it is a ton of extra DPS. I also want a frenzy corruption on gloves.

By the way the POB is really really inaccurate this league. (close combat support, multistrike support, legion jewels, and most of the slayer ascendancy isnt working)

www.poeurl.com/csh7
https://pastebin.com/1w8NUqfT





LV82 UPDATE

My gear is a lot better. I was lucky to get 2 rebukes! My DPS feels insane. I dropped the poachers mark, and instead I'm using herald of ash. Since I hit really hard, herald of ash creates strong AOE burns when the enemies die. It helps with clear speed. I got a mana leech jewel, started using blood rage, cast when damage taken (lv8) + immortal call (lv10), got oskarm gloves for curse on hit, got a 5 link, and got pretty good flasks. I've been trying out endurance charge on melee stun + leap slam, but it doesnt work out as well as I thought. I also got 20% quality on my flicker, which helps frenzy sustain. ancestral warchief is really nice vs bosses.

Usually, I can kill tough enemies with pure flicker because I hit so hard. But I have dual strike just in case, which is really strong.

For the rebuke swords, fortify, close combat, and ruthless are great support gems because they scale all types of melee damage instead of just phys or just ele. They also cost less mana than ele attacks or melee phys support. I respecced the tree a little bit so I no longer have any phys nodes.

For my 4th lab, I decided I will take Bane of legends because I want speed. Multistrike is slower than before, so flicker doesnt feel good until atk speed is decent. I still need to quality my flasks, and get more "ele damage with attacks" on gear, and crit multi on amulet. Then get better jewels.

The POB is still very inaccurate. It needs to update the new accuracy formula and new gems. In the game, my hit chance is 100%. POB tells me Im at 93%.

www.poeurl.com/crpI
https://pastebin.com/GQzk0pB7




LV69 UPDATE
My gear is still really bad. I'm trying out Flesh and stone (sand stance) + poachers/blasphemy + War Banner for mana reservation is working well. I kind of died a lot just because my resists are really bad, but I killed ACT10 kitava deathless since he doesnt do much ele damage. I really need to cap resists and get better flasks. I'm also trying out endurance charge on melee stun on Leap slam. I don't like the frenzy single target, so I think I will find an alternative.

One tip is try to use your crafting bench. even just adding 20% res too 4 pieces of gear makes a huge difference. And you can craft decent weapons by adding + or % phys too. Also, taking 1 mana/life leech node on the tree unti you can find a leech jewel can be helpful.

www.poeurl.com/crgN
https://pastebin.com/5HxspRyD



LV40 UPDATE
My gear is trash. I started Flickering at about LV38. Somethings I needed to adjust is to not use blood rage or herald of fire. Instead, use poachers mark + blasphemy. This solves many mana issues, and you wont get the blood rage degen. Also, dash and close combat are nice. Close combat can go on both flicker and frenzy.

www.poeurl.com/cq4I
https://pastebin.com/Mvgcukrw



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EXTRA INFORMATION
Spoiler
GAMEPLAY FLOW

1. Make sure Herald of Ash, Herald of Purity, and War Banner are turned on
2. When you enter a zone, turn on Blood Rage
3. Use Frenzy a couple times to get some frenzy charges
4. Flicker away!!

Against Bosses or Tough Enemies
1. Cast your Ancestral protector totem
2. Use Frenzy repeatedly
3. If you want to, you can alternate Frenzy and Flicker, but a 3-link Frenzy should be all you need.

FAQ

-- What about other new gems in 3.7?
Flesh and stone, Steel Skin, Dash, Pride, Rage support, and Close Combat support might be worth using

-- I keep running out of mana
Make sure you have an upgraded mana flask. Turn off an Aura/Herald/Banner if needed, and use Poachers mark + Blasphemy (for mana gained on hit). Use Ruthless or Maim support gem instead of melee phys.

-- I keep running out of frenzy charges, and I stop flickering
Make sure you have multistrike (Lakishu's Blade) linked to Flicker, and turn on blood rage (or poachers mark + blasphemy). In general, the higher your damage, the easier the frenzy sustain. Use Frenzy to get your first couple charges. Dont use Flicker for single target. Quality on flicker gives you an additional 5% chance of frenzy on hit.

In the endgame, I only rely on frenzy, 20% flicker, and blood rage. I kill bosses before I run out of charges usually, so using frenzy is a rare occasion.

NOTE ABOUT FLASKS

I'm finding that the people that follow this guide tend to neglect flasks. They can also save you from lethal mechanics and nearly double your DPS, so they are VERY important.

Make sure your life flask is an instant flask. Like most builds, you will want unbleed, uncurse, and unfreeze flasks. Diamond flask is necessary if you are doing a crit build. MAKE SURE YOU 20% QUALITY ALL FLASKS!


Last edited by Hollyphantom on Sep 23, 2019, 1:27:46 AM
Last bumped on Nov 13, 2019, 7:53:37 AM
Nice guide on early flickering, but do you have any pob/skill tree plan out for different type of flicker such as Terminus ESt, Oro etc? Asking for a friend.
"
DemiSandal wrote:
Nice guide on early flickering, but do you have any pob/skill tree plan out for different type of flicker such as Terminus ESt, Oro etc? Asking for a friend.


I think other people will make those guides, because they already exist. They just need to update them. The exception is Oro's Crit flicker. That needs a new guide.

We'll see what I end up doing with this guide. I'm still working on it. I dont have the endgame build planned yet either.
Last edited by Hollyphantom on Jun 6, 2019, 1:27:28 AM
I hope you can end build until tomorrow because it's starting really nice :D
looks very good, good luck :)
Last edited by Versonire on Jun 6, 2019, 3:01:32 PM
Looks really good so far,i think i will start the new League with this build as Duellist/Slayer. Hope it get´s updated quikly.
Can u add a PoB Version of the Skill Tree?
Thanks for the work u put into this :)
"
Roxxis wrote:
Looks really good so far,i think i will start the new League with this build as Duellist/Slayer. Hope it get´s updated quikly.
Can u add a PoB Version of the Skill Tree?
Thanks for the work u put into this :)


its included already for lv28.

or is that not what youre asking for?

working on lv 38....
Can it actually sustain Flicker tho? Please post a video!
the league has not started yet, how will he post a video? patch 3.7 flicker is required for this to work
Last edited by SquireShiedon on Jun 6, 2019, 5:46:45 PM
"
Can it actually sustain Flicker tho? Please post a video!


Yea I can actually. I'll use a 10% frenzy on hit chest from synthesis to simulate. I've tested it and it has worked.

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