Strength Stacking THICC Zombomancer (Originally for 3.8 Blight league HC)

Greetings and Salutations fellow exiles!

In a rare breaking moment from sarcasm and memes, I'm throwing out a PoB and continuing project guide for a Strength Stacking Zombiemancer. I exclusively played summoners from Prophecy League through Abyss league. Then I branched out learning to play various other archetypes in the worlderful world of Wraeclast. With the advent of 3.8, summoners everywhere are rejoicing with all the various QOL and straight up numerical buffs to minions.

Artwork credit goes to JasonTN

In D&D settings, I enjoy playing the physically frail necromantic wizards obsessed with commanding the dead. In POE this archetype get's some much needed steroids with the direct injection of strength stacking which ends up buffing our life and higher zombie count. Juggernaut stands out particularly being the PREMIERE defensive ascendancy for HC damage reduction.

Buffs, Nerfs and "adjustments" in 3.8
We lost a massive help to the build in our threshold jewel "Violent dead" (May it rest in piece). It's going to be incredibly difficult to replace the CDR on the Zombo's slam, but, we're going to pray to RNGWilson that the AI buffs and minion support gems that are coming in 3.8 (such as Feeding frenzy, yum yum!) will make up for some of the QoL and DPS lost from Violent Dead.

Leveling Guide:

You can level as a melee with Ground Slam (My skill of choice till I get Zombies) or use Holy Flame Totem which will do a sufficient amount of damage till Act 3.

Key Gems and how to acquire them:

Raise Zombie - acquire via Witch mule from "Enemy at the Gate" act 1 starter or via Siosa act 3 (most likely muling, but that's a personal preference)

Minion Damage Support - acquire via Witch mule from "the caged brute" act 1.

Minion life support - acquire Witch Act 2 "Sharp and Cruel" or "Root of the problem" via mule or wait till siosa "a fixture of fate" act 3.

Feeding Frenzy - reward for Witch and Templar "A fixture of Fate" - also buyable from Clarissa for Scion for same quest.

Summon Carrion Golem/Stone Golem - both from Act 4 as reward options "breaking the seal" on Jugg

Brutality Support - acquire via "The Eternal Nightmare" Act 4.

Bandits (Act 2) - We want to Kill ALL, the two passive points will be a huge boon for us as it adds on additional jewel sockets for later down the road for % maximum life stacking, chaos resists, and either elemental resistances or gem stat requirements (like intelligence or dexterity)

Ascendancy Choices:

1) We start with Unflinching for endurance charge generation. Sets us at a max of 4 endurance charges early on.

2) We finish off our endurance charge buffs during 2nd lab, giving us a total of 8% reduced elemental damage taken, and additional 4% physical while at max endurance changes (that's on top of 16% reduction from 4 base endurance charges) bringing us to a max of 20% phys reduction.

3) We want to regen as much HP as possible as quickly as possible should we ever take damage. Unbreakable helps with fat fingers on flasks, while also giving us some juicy returns on armour on our Body piece and an additional reduction to all damage taken by 5% (that's elemental, physical, and chaos bby!!!)

4) Finally we graduate from the final lab with the ability to never be stunned (Since we're using Alberon's warpath we won't have room for Kaom's Roots) along with an additional 10% increased movement speed. Some would argue to take this first to increase your running speed throughout the story. That's up to you. Since I'm a horrible mechanical player and playing HC, I choose to stack as much defense as possible prior to getting QOL like movespeed/cannot be stunned.

PoB Pastebin for those of you that want to perform surgery on the build:
POB pastebin:

Here is the POB pastebin for the Standard version of the build - with Violent Dead jewels:

Gear Spoiler:
End game gear will mostly focus on three pieces of gear: The Baron, Saqawal's Nest (Potentially for Avian on minions) and Alberon's Warpath.

Priorities for rare gear are (in order)

1. Cap Ele Resistances
2. (HC/pushing 90's players only) - Chaos resistance to positive or 0% without flasks
3. Flat Life
4. Strength (Only get T1/T2 Strength, otherwise it won't be worth it for stacking with the Baron)

For shields there are lots of great options, even two handed options if you're playing SC or like to live dangerously. I prefer to go with Saffels frame in order to stack as much Max+ elemental resists as possible. Shields can roll a ton of Armour, Health, and Strength, so this is a good item slot for early stacking of attributes.

Videos - While I have an exceptional PC for shooting Powerpoint slide presentations....I have a terrible PC for capturing gamefootage. I'll do my best to get some videos out as I can.
Most likely there will be some death videos - dear innocence in Act 5, plz leave me alone. A discussion going over the first thought processes for the build can be found here - this was using the 3.7 tree prior to 3.8's patch notes:

Opening weekend video (5 hours of gameplay Act 3-Act 7):

2nd weekend leveling stream from 81-85 (3 hours of gameplay)

FAQ & Special Thanks!
Special thanks to all our Patreon supporters! Also special thanks to a couple of builds that are contributed body parts (kidneys, livers, etc) to this build:

Qlidascope's STR stacking Witch:

Kayella's BIG dps summoner:

And the original build that got me stacking stats -

WaffleT's STR stacking LeadLady:

Q: Why Jugg and not Necro?

A: I play HC and SC alternating between leagues. Synthesis was HC, Legion was SC, and so back to HC I go with Blight. I want to maximize my defensive options, stacking Endurance charges + Armour + Fortify effect is a great way to mitigate the vast majority of damage sources in POE. Jugg does this most effectively out of all available present ascendancy choices.

Q: What is the top end of this build?

A: Most Zombie focused builds can pump out 1-2 million shaper DPS simply from gem levels and passive tree nodes. Of course things like Animate Guardian, Spectres, SRS, Skeletons, Herald of Agony, all can come in to augment damage. I'd like to get the most out of zombies possible with this build and then add layers of damage to get a direct answer to the question "just how far can Zombies go as primary DPS source?"
IGN: Steeldraconis
G3 Patreon:
Check out the CHAD Zerker build:
Last edited by Steeldraconis on Oct 28, 2019, 12:07:42 PM
Last bumped on Oct 27, 2019, 2:58:26 AM


Updates to gear and progression:

24 hours into Blight league (Start of Act 8). Pretty slow leveling - 10 hours of playtime in HC Blight league.

After the first 24 hours of Blight:

Gear is mostly trash, getting carried by huge amounts of HP. Have 124% from the tree, 2840 HP, 569 Mana (with 19% unreserved).

Gem links are:

Wand - SRS + Minion Speed + Deathmark
Helm - Vaal Summon Skeletons + Feeding Frenzy + Minion Speed + Minion Damage
Shield - Clarity + Enduring Cry + Convocation
Boots - Raise Spectre + Fortify + Shield Charge + Faster Attacks
Gloves - Pride + Molten Shell + Melee Physical + Carrion Golem
Chest - Raise Zombie + Brutality + Minion Life + Melee Physical

Current PoB progress:

After killing Act 10 Kitava - Yes, I really waited till I was level 72 to I could use a Minion wand.


Presently have 6 total Endurance charges. Have 3 Ascendency's completed (Always do your third lab before killing kitava! Makes ele resists a bit easier!!!).

This one single wand I couldn't use till level 72. I picked it up for 1C in BHC on Saturday and couldn't wait to use it. I need 242 INT to wield this puppy, but now that Shield charge works in conjunction with Wands, we can still SC into packs to proc fortify, and gain all the benefits of these juicy damage/speed wands. The QoL on this is massive as it's comparable in stats to Spiritual Command or Death Attunement for Speed and Lord of the Dead or Gravepact for damage. Really wonderful gearing options for Summoners now!

IGN: Steeldraconis
G3 Patreon:
Check out the CHAD Zerker build:
Last edited by Steeldraconis on Sep 19, 2019, 1:31:22 PM
Update after level 88 milestone:





Passive Tree

Next upgrades are for items with similar resistances, but have higher tier's of strength - my amulet and rings both have opportunities for improvement in this area. As does my belt. Until we hit 1K STR, we are losing out on the leech from Zombies. 900 STR does give us 3 additional zombies, so at the moment I've using 12 (will be 13 once we get a 20/20 gem).

annnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnd update upon hitting level 90! First ever 90 in HC!

IGN: Steeldraconis
G3 Patreon:
Check out the CHAD Zerker build:
Last edited by Steeldraconis on Sep 20, 2019, 5:38:48 PM
can you tell me what your minion damage is now after another month building plz?

and any upgrades on gears?
Eag1e wrote:
can you tell me what your minion damage is now after another month building plz?

and any upgrades on gears?

Hey Mate!

Here is the most up to date POB I've got at level 93.

Please note - the build is now in Standard after ripping and hence is using "Violent Dead" jewels x2 for Zombie Slam damage.

Let me know if you have any other questions!
IGN: Steeldraconis
G3 Patreon:
Check out the CHAD Zerker build:
what specs are you using?
Fuel For The Feeding End

Report Forum Post

Report Account:

Report Type

Additional Info