[3.7] Shock Nova EB MoM Inquisitor: Shockingly Fast, Powerful & Tanky

Want to zig when others zag? Here's a solid spell build you could try out for the melee league.
Let me introduce you to the newly buffed Shock Nova Inquisitor.

Path of Building

A few things to note about (un)checked boxes and the build's mechanics:
  • When you position yourself so that both the Nova and the Ring hit, you'll be doing Nova's Damage + 0.5 * Nova's Damage. PoB still has the old numbers.
  • Intensify determines your AoE vs. Damage ratio. It has values between 0 and 4.
  • Swap in Conc Effect for Light Pen for tough bosses and vice versa for general mapping.
    You can use Inc AoE as well.
  • Taking lightning damage's variance and crits into account, you'll be doing roughly 700k consistent lightning hits to Shaper and the Guardians for the purpose of shock. Now multiply the damage with +70% shock effectiveness, and you'll end up continuously shocking Guardians for very close to the max 50% More Damage and Shaper for ~30% More Damage. So besides Red Elder and Shaper, you should be shocking everything fully.
  • Power Charges are available from your Storm Brand, so getting them is not automatic but not unrealistic either.
  • Wave of Conviction should be proccing fairly regularly as it's linked to a lvl 1 CWDT.
  • Vaal RF boosts your damage quite a bit but it can't be activated that often.

A Quick Overview w/ Pros & Cons:

  • Mapping: Take out the trash with Nova's AoE & Inpulsa. Cruise comfortably with +160% MS.
  • Bossing: Shock Shaper and electrocute his ass with terrible, terrible damage (5M+ sDPS).
  • Durability: Fortify, Enfeeble, good Recovery, 40% Avoid, and an extra thicc health pool (9k+ eHP).
  • League Start: Easy to start with. Does fine with budget rares. A relatively cheap build that scales.

  • Mapping: It's not a zooming QotF build or an Autobomber. Can't do ele reflect maps.
  • Bossing: It's not a one-shot GC Miner. You have to self-cast at a fairly close range.
  • Durability: Has next to no physical mitigation.
  • League Start: You'll have to get some levels and gear before transitioning into MoM & EB.

Build Details:

My suggestions for uniques:

All these can be replaced with life/res/es/dmg/crit rares if you want!

Berek's Grip: Actually this is the one unique you absolutely need because you're not leeching much without it. Fortunately it costs pennies.

The Devouring Diadem: Free EB (4-node travel in my tree), near-continuous ES recharge, reduced mana reservation effectively gets you another aura, +1 gem level so you can get by with a lvl 2 Enlighten. Feast of Flesh can be useful while mapping.

Hale Negator: Requires you to take EB on the tree and lose 1-2 sockets for abyss jewels.
Nice anti-one-shot recovery mechanic for HC.

Soul Tether: Overleech and a good chunk of ES, but comes with a degen and you can't regen or recharge ES.

Inpulsa's Broken Heart: Shock explosions are huge for QoL. Corpse removal is great for survivability.

Carcass Jack: Cheaper than Inpulsa, +3-4 AoE and more life.

Doryani's Delusion (lightning): Hefty chunks of life, ES, damage and MS. Disable the aura.

Atziri's Step: Spell dodge. Neat!

Light of Lunaris: A shield that pairs nicely with Rumi's Concoction.


All these can be replaced with regular utility flasks if you want!
Keep in mind Inquisitor's elemental ailment immunity, though.

Rumi's Concoction: A flask that pairs nicely with Light of Lunaris.

Cinderswallow Urn: The crit variant is a nice mix of damage, recovery and utility. To activate the ignite benefits you need to have some fire damage, e.g. from an abyss jewel.

The Wise Oak: Damage plus elemental mitigation.

Atziri's Promise: A bit less damage plus chaos res.

Luxury options:

Watcher's Eye: "Consecrated Ground you create while affected by Zealotry causes enemies to take (8-10)% increased Damage" and/or "(10-15)% increased Cast Speed while affected by Zealotry"

Bottled Faith (Not in 3.7!): Big boy damage.

Headhunter: For making your buds jelly.


Berek's Grip, Inpulsa and The Devouring Diadem are priority.

See PoB for all the recommended gems and links! A few quick notes:

Intensify is basically Inc AoE when you've moved recently, and Conc Effect when you stay still and repeatedly cast. At best you get both the AoE for mapping and the damage for bossing when needed.

Swap in Conc Effect for Light Pen for bossing, and vice versa for mapping.
You can throw an Inc AoE in there somewhere for an even bigger nova to help you clear.

Stay away from Elemental Focus besides potentially utilizing it for leveling.
However it can be more DPS against Shaper and Red Elder if you're really lacking in damage and can't apply a shock high enough to out-DPS Elem Focus with another support gem plus shock.
In general though, losing shock all but kills the build.

You're using Storm Brand for utility. Possible links include Arcane Surge, Culling Strike, Power Charge On Crit, Blind, Innervate, Faster Casting and Onslaught.

Whirling Blades is my go-to travel skill but use whatever you prefer, just remember the weapon restrictions for these skills. In the case of Flame Dash, link it with Arcane Surge and take it off from Storm Brand.

I would recommend Phase Running as your primary method of movement. Use travel skills mainly for dodging and triggering Fortify or Arcane Surge.

You can use Wrath instead of Zealotry if you want a tiny bit more DPS and don't think creating more Consecrated Ground is important. Watcher's Eye mods are obviously different too which allows for some more tinkering.

Low lvl CWDT links can include Wave of Conviction, Tempest Shield, Cold Snap, or a golem of your choice.
Steelskin and IC need a lvl 20 CWDT to be effective.

Ascendancy, Bandits & Pantheon

1. Sanctuary: To get our regens rolling. And damage.

2. Pious Path: Elemental ailment immunity is one of the best parts of the Inquisitor.
More damage.

3. Instruments of Virtue: Don't take this if you're not using Whirling Blades, Leap Slam or Shield Charge! Take Augury or Righteous instead.
If you are though... boy are you in for some pure, unadulterated damage.

4. Augury of Penitence: Elemental damage mitigation scales well with the enormous pool of eHP (and "Nearby" in this case means 60 radius which is more than enough).
You can take Righteous Providence instead if you prefer a bit more damage to the mitigation.
Did I mention that there's damage?


Passives or Alira, depending on your tree. I took the passives.
However I like Alira especially in HC for the early all res.


Major god: Brine to not get stun-locked.

Minor god: Garukhan looks alright. These really don't matter that much.
Ryslatha and Ralakesh are good for lab.

Leveling & Skill Trees

There's no use in reinventing the wheel, so here's a fine resource for leveling this build:

The general gist of it is that you'll be using Storm Brand to get Onslaught, Power Charges, Innvervate etc. and Shock Nova/Arc/Lightning Trap/Blade Vortex/whatever as your main skill.
Obviously use a skill that you feel the most comfortable with, be it Sunder or anything else.

Use Clarity if you're running into mana problems before taking EB and MoM.
Warlord's Mark is useless for spellcasters as of 3.7.

Some solid (trade)league start uniques you could find useful: Tabula (farm Humility divs at the The Blood Aqueduct), Berek's Grip, Singularity, Winterheart & Skullhead.

Skill Trees:

Low Level Tree

Final Tree

Don't take EB or MoM until you have enough regen, leech and ES! I'd recommend waiting at least until you have Pious Path, and only take EB then leaving MoM for later.

ES nodes probably aren't worth it until you have some gear and are ready to take EB and MoM. Optimally your ES should be about 43% of your life to best withstand one-shots.

If you're not using a lightning skill for leveling, don't take the lightning nodes. Same goes with AoE nodes.

For now just a placeholder. Maybe a section for FAQ?

Final Words

Thank you for your interest in my guide! The build is by no means set in stone and there are plenty of options to modify it to your liking.

Feel free to ask any questions, but please check if they've already been answered above.

Have a good one,
Last edited by dblu on Jun 13, 2019, 8:43:28 AM
Last bumped on Aug 12, 2019, 10:44:30 AM
Last edited by dblu on Jun 6, 2019, 7:50:41 AM
Looks good. Loved novasorc! Will run this with managuardian in HC as starter. Thanks!
meSOOlame wrote:
Looks good. Loved novasorc! Will run this with managuardian in HC as starter. Thanks!

So happy to hear you might've found the guide useful. I'll be roleplaying as a nova sorc as well :)

Lemme know how it ultimately pans out.
3.7 is a buff or nerf shock nova? i never play that gem
diogooner wrote:
3.7 is a buff or nerf shock nova? i never play that gem


Shock Nova got massively buffed in Synthesis and will be buffed again in Legion.
Added a bunch of things and improved readability. Any suggestions and comments are welcome!
Played this on a trickster in 3.6. Massive amounts of fun. I believe I'll revisit it when I can afford an Inpulsa here.
I played with Lightning Warp using two Singularities and I've gotta say - the amounts of damage you get for 2c is astounding. You might be losing too much survivability on an inquis for that, though. Are you using a well rolled rare in stead?
is this uber elder viable ?
Does anyone have a video of what this playstyle looks like?

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