[3.9] SRS Triggered Skeletons | The Mobile Nightmare Apocalypse - all content, easy leveling

Raging Spirits (SRS) are the best minion. They're aggressive, speedy, and melt everything with the one disadvantage that they don't take aggro (and would die quickly, anyway, as they do to AoE).

What's the one thing that could make them better? Free Skeletons, of course! Skeles that you don't have to cast, that come in packs, and that take aggro and deal more damage than Raging Spirits.

POB link https://pastebin.com/THcdCLRS

The core playstyle is to spam SRS, avoid damage, rotate your buffs, and debuff the chunky enemies.

You'll be dropping Skele boys right under your mouse cursor, up to 8 at a time, with the craft mod "Trigger a Socketed Spell when you Use a Skill" every 5 seconds. You'll get their Duration over 30 seconds and limit to 10 or more, making them an absolute dream to micromanage (as in, no micromanagement whatsoever).

Make it Vaal Summon Skeletons and you'll be packing a nightmare apocalypse on demand.

Further support your minions with Haste, Hatred, Anger, Flesh Offering on rotation, and Bone Armour for some survivability for yourself as well.

Here's a couple of outdated videos of my old character killing Uber Elder. If you can forgive/laugh at a few stupid deaths, they're perfectly accurate examples of the build completed:
After 3.8
After 3.6
Note some small differences from the current build, it's improved since

Cleared Sirus in the current league at lv93. I spend very little time playing this league, so it's been short hours having to be spent efficiently. It feels like you just need to get the mechanics down and you'll have plenty of damage to do the higher Awakening levels.
I'm going to try to get a Sirus video uploaded.

PROS & CONS
Spoiler

*PROS*
- Sky-high damage scaling. At full build and proper config I'm seeing 198k Shaper DPS per SRS and 257k per Skeleton, totaling 6.5 million at limits, not counting Vaal Skeles.
- FANTASTIC for "wait" fights where you can summon everything before the enemy spawns. Essence boys, Legion, METAMORPHS, Strongboxes, bosses, etc
- Can do any map modifiers, but some of them will be sketch
- Probably the most straightforward a minion build can be

*CONS*
- Squishy, even after getting Bone Armour. Taste of Hate and a second, variable defensive Flask will be important. Learn to avoid boss mechanics and let Skeleboys tank the enemies.
- I guess some players don't like Minions because they like dealing the damage themselves. They have no business here!

That's it for Cons.



SKILLS & GROUPS

Spoiler

Summon Raging Spirit: Socket this in The Covenant as soon as you can afford to 5-link one. You may notice 5-link uniques sell for more than the combined cost of buying the base + the prophecy, so consider that a money-making tip. Rolls don't matter, getting a 6-link should be your first big expense.
SUPPORTS: Unleash, Minion Damage, Elemental Damage with Attacks, Elemental Focus, and Ruthless.
Because of Unleash, I don't bother with Melee Splash on SRS anymore. Skeletons do all the splash you need since they're frontline. Swap out Ruthless for Splash if you'd like.

(Vaal) Summon Skeletons: While leveling, you'll want to 4-link this in your body armour with Spell Totem Support, but work your way towards a 6-link Staff and Trigger-casting. I've got a whole section below about Staff Business.
SUPPORTS: Feeding Frenzy, Maim, Minion Damage, Fortify, and Melee Splash.
Feeding Frenzy makes them charge enemies across the screen, which is just awesome.
They'll deal great damage and bring utility. Maim, Frenzy buff, Splash Damage, take aggro, and blow up when they die.
When you finally craft a multi-mod staff with "+2 to Socketed Supports", a lv4 Empower will become better than Fortify. You can potentially bring Skeletons up to level 30.

Dash, Flesh Offering, and Desecrate supported by Faster Casting in your Boots. You'll need all three of these spells mid-combat, so the cast speed is very helpful.
It doesn't matter if Dash is linked.
If you prefer Flame Dash, just know that you'll lose DPS when you trigger Elemental Equilibrium by passing straight through a boss, which you need to do on a lot of fights.

Hatred and Anger with Generosity in your Helmet, UNLINKED from the fourth socket. This is a massive elemental damage boost to all your minions.
Haste also in your Helmet, just make sure it's not linked to Generosity. Half the reason you use this aura is the Cast and Move speed to yourself.
You won't be able to afford Anger until you pick up a Devouring Diadem (Haste & Hatred first). It's an Intelligence-only helmet, so getting 4 off-color sockets will be a minor pain. Use the 2R1G recipe once and then wait for a Syndicate encounter to put some white sockets it. You want to rank up Vorici in Research where you can potentially get two chances for up to 3 white sockets. You'll be farming Syndicate encounters for craft recipes anyway.

Ball Lightning: This is for applying debuffs and triggering Skeletons ONLY. ITS DAMAGE IS NOT RELEVANT. When enemies reflect elemental damage, however, you can easily kill yourself if you've buffed it. I literally use a lv1, 0% quality gem myself.
It will apply Elemental Equilibrium and Elemental Weakness, drastically increasing Fire and Cold damage from your minions. With GMP it will cover massive area. Slot it in your gloves.
SUPPORTS: Greater Multiple Projectiles, Curse on Hit, and Elemental Weakness.



SKILL TREE AND ASCENDANCY
Witch, Necromancer, grab all the minion damage, cast speed, auras, and life nodes.
Skill Tree in PoE Planner: www.poeurl.com/cJoB
Path of Builder https://pastebin.com/THcdCLRS

Spoiler



Most of the selections are self-explanatory from the stat priorities of minion damage, cast speed, auras, and your own life points. You don't care about Energy Shield or Mana. Minion Movespeed and Skill Effect Duration count as damage because they affect how much time each minion spends attacking.

I've only played up to 93, so that's where I'm writing this guide. Next I would take the Fearsome Force wheel (and I actually did take it temporarily before buying Jewels, it's good for clear). Then fill out all the little nodes and top off 100 with the +14% Minion Health.
I wouldn't consider getting the last two nearby Jewel sockets because they require two worthless traveling nodes each.
You could even go to Whirling Barrier for some block chance and cast speed if you want lol.

Mistress of Sacrifice will be essential for both the speed/duration and reinforcing the behavior of keeping Flesh Offering up. I used Commander of Darkness for a while but it's like a budget option if you can't afford resists yet.

Go on to Mindless Aggression, Unnatural Strength, and Bone Barrier. Damage, Damage, and Survivability in heavy doses. Bone Barrier is a real unlife-saver.

- a note about Minion Instability: I've seen people call this a "noob trap" but I've found that it greatly helps in the fights that usually gives SRS trouble. Unique enemies that AOE will trigger a lot of explosions and you'll just need to keep spamming. It's worth grabbing as soon as you like.


Spoiler
test boy



GEAR AND STATS
Spoiler

Here's the priority list when you're picking stats:
1. minion dps
2. your ability to efficiently cast minions
3. your character survivability
4. minion survivability

At no point should you concern yourself with your own character's damage.

Body Armour: The Covenant, the stat rolls don't matter. Getting Blood Magic for your SRS is essential to casting it freely, which you need to do a lot. If you get rich, consider getting one with a good corrupt like "+1 to Socketed Gems"

Boots: Movespeed, Life, Dex/Str, Resists. Preferably Two-Toned

Gloves: Grip of the Council, the 20% is huge damage. For Final Form, get one corrupted with "+2 to Socketed Curse Gems"

Helmet: The Devouring Diadem is what you need to afford all three Auras (plus -14% reserved mana from passives tree). It sucks that you get no life or resists, but the sustain is good and gets you through "no regen" maps.
You could find a really good Bone Helmet and use Carrion Golem instead of Anger, but you'll net less damage and have more trouble with "no regen" maps. I get sick of resummoning the Golem, myself.
For Enchantment, "Summon Raging Spirit has 18% chance to summon an extra Minion" is the best but anything that affects SRS or Skeletons is good enough to wear.

Weapon: You'll have to craft it! See the "Staff Business" section below. While leveling, use a Reverberation Rod with whatever off-hand you like.

Necklace: Life, Resists or Dexterity, Cast Speed. A good Jade Amulet should last you forever. I craft "+1 to Minimum Endurance Charges" on my Amulet and Rings for the combined 12% Physical reduction

Rings: Same as Necklace for stats, except Cast Speed only goes up to 7% on a ring so I'd rather finish off your Resists or Attributes.
When you're rich, considering buying a couple Vermillion Rings with some very expensive resists.

Belt: Just life and resists on a Stygian Vise for the socket
Use the % increase Flask effect craft if you don't need resists or attributes

Flasks: Two Eternal Life Flasks, one Quicksilver, one Taste of Hate, and one map-dependent defensive slot. I'll usually carry a Basalt Flask, but switch to a Ruby, Sapphire, or Topaz depending on boss or map mods. You need Freeze, Bleed, and Curse immunity from among these. Your survivability will boost greatly when you learn Flask crafting (it's easy) and use them liberally.

Jewels:
One FROM DUST with a corrupt implicit of your choice. It's a cheap unique and a good opportunity to grab a valuable implicit like "You cannot be Cursed with Silenced" or "Corrupted Blood cannot be inflicted on you". The Silence one saves you randomly and the Blood one will save you in the Sirus fight. A good rare with one of these is very expensive.
For your other three Jewels, buy some Ghastly Eyes that meet the following trade filters.
Must have:
minimum +31 max health
+# to # phys/cold/fire damage to attacks (the sites search by average, set this to 14 minimum)
Must have at least one of:
Minions deal (15–20)% increased Damage if you've used a Minion Skill Recently
Minions have (4–6)% increased Attack Speed
(7–10)% increased Cast Speed if a Minion has been Killed Recently
Minions have (6–8)% increased Attack and Cast Speed if you or your Minions have Killed Recently

Aim for getting three Jewels like this for 20c or less each to fill out your slots, then consider buying more expensive ones.

Annoint:
Here's the wiki page if you missed Blight league like I did

There isn't anything particularly good for your minions, so I just get Herbalism. Grab whatever you like that raises your health. I like Herbalism because you depend on Flasks for most of your sustain. Soul of Steel would even be nice, but 3x Golden Oil is not cheap.


~DON'T WEAR ANYTHING THAT ADDS FIRE OR COLD DAMAGE TO SPELLS, IT WILL RUIN YOUR ELEMENTAL EQUILIBRIUM~
If you're unsure, mouse over Ball Lightning's button. The tooltip will say if it deals any Fire or Cold.



Leveling up, this applies all throughout the campaign into White Maps.
Spoiler

The instructions are simple:

Put Summon Skeletons on a Totem in Act 1
Pick up SRS in Act 1 as well, then put it in a Reverberation Rod at level 24

and you'll cruise through everything. Drop the totem by the bad guys, it will start pumping out Skeles, and you can start pumping out Raging Spirits. The Totem will be a godsend with Izaru and any other boss with dangerous mechanics.

You don't have much to worry about gear selection as you're leveling up. Prioritize Socket Links, Strength & Dexterity, Resists, Life, Cast Speed, and Move Speed on your boots. Feel free to hold onto some of the better uniques like Sidhebreath and Alberon's Warpath until you beat the campaign and need more Resistances.

Alternatively, you can use Zombies in place of Skeletons until you get Trigger-casting. They're usually less work but more problematic when they die during a fight.


Getting Built, this is when you need to focus on shopping and spending your currency well. What's most budget-friendly is shopping smart!
Spoiler

Complete the core build. Get your uniques and don't worry much about the stat rolls. Shop for the rares you need with 3 desirable stats (refer to the section above to plan your purchases). Don't forget to watch for open prefixes/suffixes for the crafts you need!
Here's an example of how to filter items on https://www.pathofexile.com/trade:



Get used to visiting poeaffix.net for reference. You can see what stats an item might have, then filter for 3 good stats. Shopping in this way keeps you from the situation where you need annoyingly specific stats from one last piece of gear.

Use every Jun encounter you can until you Unveil "Trigger a Socketed Spell when you use a Skill".

Buy corrupted, 20/20 gems. They're a by-product of people trying to make lv21 gems, so they're sold off cheap.

In general, you're keeping budget in mind while getting the essentials.


FINAL FORM - when you got the money to drop on big items to push that upper endgame. Shop for rares of the best base types with 4 desirable stats or more. Find good corrupted bonuses. Buy lv21/23% gems, or Awakened.
What's most important will be crafting your multi-mod Staff, which will cost you several Exalts. It'll be your biggest boost this whole time. See STAFF BUSINESS below.

STAFF BUSINESS
You're going to have to craft this staff. I recommend you do it as soon as you've Unveiled "Trigger a Socketed Spell when you use a Skill" from Jun's missions.

for Getting Built:
Spoiler

Essence craft
Buy a non-corrupted, ilv83 Staff that's already 5-link or 6-link, depending on what you can afford. 6-links get very affordable later in the League. Be sure it has 18% or 20% block chance. ilv83 is important because the highest tier of Cast Speed can be randomly rolled by that ilvl, but higher-level Staffs gain access to other rolls you don't need. Keep it as close to 83 as you can.
Make sure it's at 20% quality, then use Shrieking or Deafening Essence of Fears until you get something with a decent Cast Speed roll on it, like 30%. Make sure it has an open Suffix for Trigger-craft! "Trigger a Socketed Spell when you use a Skill" is like an essential Keystone for this build.
Lastly, make sure it does not add Fire or Cold damage to spells!
If you're low on currency, don't be afraid to settle for the bare minimum.
Consider paying someone you trust to craft Trigger-cast for you.



for Final Form
Spoiler

Multi-mod, multi-exalts cost
You need a good staff with no more than 2 prefixes and 1 suffix (hold Alt while moused over to see full details). The best prefix would be "+1 to Level of Socketed Gems", you can meta-craft that yourself but it would be extremely difficult to get any good 2nd or 3rd mod without blocking off crafts or getting Fire/Cold damage to spells. You may also shop for good stats, possibly risking Annulments to make room.
If you're willing to spend the extra on fusings, you may include non-6-links in your search and 6-link them yourself. This will likely be necessary to get the most desirable stats.
What's important is having a good base on which to craft "Can have up to 3 Crafted Modifiers", followed by "Trigger a Socketed Spell with you Use a Skill", and "+2 to Level of Socketed Support Gems".

- The "+2 to Supports" requires that you farm Catarina, which will take some time (but be profitable).
The unique shield she drops, Bitterbind Point, can be unveiled to learn this craft. You can buy these still veiled, letting you speed up the process immensely with a moderate currency investment. Buy and unveil them one at a time until you unlock +2.
Consider paying someone you really trust to craft +2 to Supports for you.
Don't skimp on anything with this staff, it's a huge investment that cannot be restored or replaced easily.

The result will be an incredible boon at the cost of 5+ Exalted Orbs, depending on luck.



Unveiling your crafts
Spoiler

This is worth repeating with focus because the crafts are core to the build.
For "Trigger a Socketed Spell when you Use a Skill", you will simply unveil as many weapons as you can find. It seems to be more common once you begin yellow maps. Do all the Syndicate that you can and focus on Unveiling weapons and spawning Catarina. Aisling in Transportation is best.

"+2 to Socketed Support Gems" takes forever to farm, so I recommend you shortcut by buying Bitterbind Points that are still Veiled. Only Catarina drops can Unveil that mod and Bitterbind is her only exclusive drop that can, so this is a deterministic way to Unveil it by just spending currency. If you shop patiently, you'll Unveil it shortly and affordably.


TIPS and PANTHEON
Spoiler

- I say go with Brine King to mitigate freezes and stuns for Major. Since Poison and Chaos damage have gotten deadlier, I like Shakari for Minor. "Immune to Poison" will save you a lot of deaths.
Here's the Pantheons page.

- Anything triggers the Skeletons, so you can initiate on packs with Desecrate + Flesh Offering and the Skeles will pop out ontop. If you already have Offering going, initiate with Ball Lightning instead.

- Recent changes to Raging Spirits' AI make them fly to the location of your cursor at the time of cast. This helps you target enemies and hide behind objects from deadly mechanics.

- You'll depend greatly on your Flasks in the endgame for healing and mitigating incoming damage

- Don't hold onto Vaal Skeletons all day, it charges up pretty quickly. Anytime things look potentially sketchy you should consider dropping 40 skeletons on the problem. They wipe shit up quickly and some of them will keep following with you if the enemies are dense enough.

- Fights that you can prepare for are your specialty. Get to Skeleton and SRS limits before starting a Metamorph, opening a Strongbox, or while the stupid Shaper is talking.

- With Diadem you will restore a lot of health when it triggers every 5 seconds. Use Desecrate to spread some corpses around, it will help save your Flasks charges (especially on no-regen maps and extended encounters)

- If you're not using Diadem, swap your modular Flask with a Hybrid Flask and Alt it to have "Flask Effect is not removed at Full Mana" to clear "no regen" maps.

- Before you blow your Exalts on a lv21, 23% quality Vaal Skeletons gem, know that quality on that quality makes very little DPS difference by the time you're that built. A lv21/0% gem is better than even a lv20/23% and much cheaper.
You can use Path of Builder to experiment with gem levels and quality to see what's most cost-effective while you're spending cash.


Thanks for reading! I'll be scrub-streaming this build this 3.9 league on dlive at https://dlive.tv/chocolatenoodle where I'd be happy to talk if you catch me online (I have a full-time job and such). Casuals rise up
Last edited by therealtoothman on Feb 5, 2020, 10:32:34 PM
Last bumped on Feb 5, 2020, 10:35:58 PM
How does the Inspiration interact with Desecrate or Flesh Offering?
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How does the Inspiration interact with Desecrate or Flesh Offering?
Just lowers the mana cost, which helps sometimes. Not essential.
Build updated:

No longer are Unset Rings highly recommended, it's too small of a difference even with +3 to be a priority. Vermillion Rings will likely be best-in-slot for Final Form.

Flame Dash with Faster Casting moved to Boots to include Desecrate and Flesh Offering with the Faster Casting

Some tips added to the bottom, I'm sure I'll add more over time
Last edited by therealtoothman on Jan 1, 2020, 5:31:11 PM
What about Tavukai for the amulet? Isn't the "Summoned Raging Spirits deal (60-80)% increased Damage" a good damage boost?
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Chekovsky wrote:
What about Tavukai for the amulet? Isn't the "Summoned Raging Spirits deal (60-80)% increased Damage" a good damage boost?
You can squeeze it in if you like, but it's not as big of a boost as you'd think because of the diminishing returns on "increased damage". I'm also not a fan of the passive Chaos Damage taken.

A good rare amulet can have so many other good stats you need like Life, Attributes, Resists, Cast Speed, Minion Movespeed craft, and even Physical Damage Reduction. You'd have to get even more stats out of your rings, which could be expensive.
Last edited by therealtoothman on Jan 4, 2020, 1:08:39 PM
"
"
Chekovsky wrote:
What about Tavukai for the amulet? Isn't the "Summoned Raging Spirits deal (60-80)% increased Damage" a good damage boost?
You can squeeze it in if you like, but it's not as big of a boost as you'd think because of the diminishing returns on "increased damage". I'm also not a fan of the passive Chaos Damage taken.

A good rare amulet can have so many other good stats you need like Life, Attributes, Resists, Cast Speed, Minion Movespeed craft, and even Physical Damage Reduction. You'd have to get even more stats out of your rings, which could be expensive.


Thanks! Tavukai was actually killing the SRS's before reaching 20 summons and triggering minion instability due the suicide. I'm using now a Jade Amulet like you suggested, so far so good.

Best regards.
Guide updated:

Now that I've gotten the character fully built in the current league, I've updated with all the improvements since. Running three auras now, dropped the Golem, and updated the tree and pob links. If you follow the guide all the way, your character will be ready for every fight in the game.

Added Unleash Support to SRS: This is so damn good for the build because it rewards you for repositioning and further frontloads your damage. With one keypress you can now pop out 12 or more minions, which helps especially with hectic scenarios like long boss fights or delving.
Last edited by therealtoothman on Feb 6, 2020, 1:15:19 AM

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