[3.16] Poison Blade Vortex Assassin | Early To Endgame

3.16 update
mostly updated for 3.16, still room for a bit of improvement and needs some testing if defences are enough. Along with new gameplay since the changes were pretty huge.


nov 19 - Added physical damage reduction layer to build and updated pob with slight other changes.

nov 15 - Added map modifier section to guide.

nov 10 - Fixed leveling section in pob slightly and added cheaper alternative to influence chest (crafting guide in pob). Will try to improve leveling more at some point.

nov 7 - Updated pob, corrected influence chest, updated aura setup and added crafting guide to pob notes

Scourge mechanic
Always be on the move, keep jade flask up, cast blade vortex before entering packs and never stand still in packs of scourge mobs with high corruption.

Stun avoidance lab enchant on boots and phasing on kill from abyss jewel also helps out.

-Fast mapping.
-Great league starter.
-Lots of endgame upgrades possible.
-Can do some bosses with practice.

-Might need a bit of strength from tree or gear depending on setup.
-Capping resistances is annoying for Headhunter version.
-struggles with invitations.(3.16 changes to build made these sligtly easier)
Info regarding invitations
10 boss invitation (depending on bosses) can lead to deaths.

This is why i recommend running these normal rarity and removing any socketed watchstones to lower awakening level making them easier to complete.

For the uncharted realms elder and shaper guardian invitations are possible to brute force with enough damage but can get very close to not completable. I recommend getting a character specifically for bossing or a carry if interested in uncharted realms atlas passive points.

Gear (Ignore gem links)


Get one with resistances to make gearing easier.

Allocate the notable "Influence" and Reservation mastery "15% increased mana reservation efficiency of skills" and lvl 3 enlighten as soon as possible after getting The devouring diadem to fit all auras.

Until you can afford it use Goldrim or any rare helm with life and resistances in combination with an enduring mana flask or Eldritch battery from tree (make sure to have enough energy shield from gear if using this).


Triple influenced mod evasion base chest w/ spell crit, additional curse and +1 level of socketed active skill gems. crafting guide in pob notes.

Cheaper alternative to triple influence mod chest, crafting guide in pob notes.

Until you can afford an influence chest use either Tabula rasa or 6 link rare chest with as much life and evasion as possible.


Explode for fast clear speed.

Until you can afford Asenath's gentle touch use either rare gloves with life and res or The embalmer.


Evasion or evasion/energy shield base boots with as much life, resistances and movement speed as possible. Onslaught is also nice if you can afford a pair with it.

Lab enchant 80% chance to avoid being stunned if you've killed recently makes a noticeable difference and i recommend getting it once you got a good pair of boots.


Any belt with as much life and res as possible. stygian would be best base type and getting strength if possible helps with gearing.

Not necessary but headhunter can fit in with enough resistances from gear and clusters.

Mageblood could also fit in but not sure if its worth losing out on unique flasks.


allows free reservation of despair if you don't have despair on hit ring and all round good, would only use if the amulet is cheap with current changes made to build.

If you are just starting out or it's league start use any amulet with life and res or Retaliation charm.

+2 amulet is the endgame option to consider once you got despair on hit from ring and helps filling res if deciding to use Headhunter.

(update) Triple influence mod amulet crafting guide added to pob notes.

Anoint Toxic strikes to cap chance to poison or Whispers of doom if you don't have additional curse from chest or skill tree.


First ring should be a rare ring with "+# life gained for each enemy hit by your spells" and as much resistances and life as possible. If you cannot afford this yet get one without life on spell hit but it makes a huge difference.

For second ring you want one with "Curse enemies with despair on hit, with #% increased effect, along with anything else you might need life, attributes etc.


Cold iron point for most damage. damage over time and power charge on crit are best corrupts.

Use in place of one Cold iron point if you don't have Asenath's gentle touch for spreading poison

Weapon swap

If you have enough strength to wield Sinvicta's Mettle it allows you to gain free rampage by weapon swapping to the axe and killing one enemy then swapping back to your cold iron points.


Mistwall or Replica Mistwall mainly used where damage doesn't matter as much (heist) or if you feel the need to be tankier.

Main setup. Instilling and enkindling are both fine, i prefer mine automated.

Atziri's promise is a cheap alternative to bottled faith, can also be swapped with quicksilver for bosses if there is no risk of being frozen.
Another alternative to bottled faith or atziri's promise if you are struggling against certain ailments


Get as much resistances on these as possible if you plan on using Headhunter at some point.

Overwhelming malice is first priority. Second would be grim oath and for the third one touch of cruelty, Wicked pall also works as a last resort if there is nothing else. Two notable clusters are okay to begin with and are cheaper.

Large cluster should also not have more than 8 passive skills since you will end up wasting skill points on any with more than that.


For mediums Circling oblivion, haemorrhage, or wicked pall are all great.

For passive skills no more than 4 or 5 so no skill points are wasted.


For smalls one with surging vitality and fettle on the other.

These should have no less than 3 passive skills.

"#% to Damage over Time Multiplier while affected by Malevolence" adds lots of damage. "Damaging Ailments you inflict deal Damage #% faster while affected by Malevolence" is a cheaper option. Any other malevolence, grace, determination or precision modifiers on top of that is also good but gets way more expensive.

If using stygian vise get Phasing on kill, life, res and/or damage on abyss jewel.

Gem links


Determination - Malevolence - Vaal Grace - Enlighten lvl 3

Enlighten lvl 4 allows you to put divergent precision into the build but the cost is too high compared to the dps you get out of it.


quality on Blade Vortex does not matter since it doesn't give enough to increase radius.

Blade vortex - Unleash - Deadly ailments - Void manipulation - Cruelty - Unbound ailments


Vaal Blade vortex - Awakened unleash - Awakened deadly ailments - Awakened void manipulation - Anomalous Cruelty - Awakened unbound ailments

Anywhere they fit

Cast when damage taken lvl 1 - Immortal call lvl 3 You could try higher levels , i have mine triggering at around 25% of my health lost.
Enduring cry Not needed but good if you got strength for it.
Withering step Put on key you move with to cast automatically, and take off if using Dash while bossing.
Blood rage Anomalous version is good for bosses/unique monsters for frenzy charge generation.
Plague bearer Remove when you got enough damage.
Whirling blades - Faster attacks
Molten shell
Defiance banner
Wither - Spell totem - multiple totems
Despair - Blasphemy Only if using Impresence or you don't have despair on hit ring yet.

Weapon swap
Dash - Second wind For bosses or getting over ledges.

Map modifiers to look out for

Reroll map

- Monsters have #% increased accuracy rating / Players have -#% to amount of suppressed spell damage prevented
- -#% maximum Player Resistances
- Players are Cursed with Vulnerability, with #% increased Effect
- Players are Cursed with Elemental Weakness
- Monsters fire 2 additional Projectiles

Won't break the map but slows you down

- Monsters have a #% chance to avoid Poison, Blind, and Bleeding
- Monsters are Hexproof
- +#% Monster Chaos Resistance

Can clear entire map but might stuggle with boss/tough targets
(as long as you have the devouring diadem and life gained on hit ring)

- Players have #% less Recovery Rate of Life and Energy Shield
- Players cannot Regenerate Life, Mana or Energy Shield

No need to worry about

- Monsters have #% increased Critical Strike Chance
+#% to Monster Critical Strike Multiplier
(with mistwalker you take no extra damage from crits as long as you are elusive which we always have up)

- Monsters reflect #% of Physical Damage
(with opportunistic damage from critical strikes cannot be reflected onto us, if your crit chance isn't high enough use lesser pantheon "soul of yugul")

Pantheons / Bandits / Ascendancy

Bandits : kill all or help Alira for early game regen/resistances.

Ascendancy : Noxius strikes > Toxic delivery > Mist walker > Opportunistic.

Pantheons : Lunaris for mapping, Solaris for bossing.

Lesser pantheon : Gruthkul for mapping. Ryslatha for bossing.

Path of building (leveling/crafting included in pob notes)

New tankier version : https://pastebin.com/mcMrJhgR

Old version with more damage : https://pastebin.com/2cxyGHVG
(especially if you replace flesh and stone with herald of purity)

Trade links

Clusters info
Make sure the clusters are chaos damage or damage over time before buying.

Large cluster
Medium cluster
Small cluster
Life on hit ring
Despair on hit ring
Watcher's eye

I appreciate any feedback and will try to help out if i can.
Last edited by hackergooby on Dec 3, 2021, 6:59:12 AM
Last bumped on Dec 4, 2021, 3:17:18 PM
Thanks, I'll try this build!
Thanks, I'll try this build!
I'm pretty new to the game and was wondering how does blade vortex apply poison?
To60Kukata wrote:
I'm pretty new to the game and was wondering how does blade vortex apply poison?

Here you can check out how many times blade vortex hits per second.
So with a 100% chance to poison from ascendancy (Toxic delivery 40%), herald of agony (20% and higher with circle of nostalgia with increased buff effect) and chance to poison nodes from skill tree combined every hit with blade vortex is going to poison targets, and at max blade vortex stacks that would mean 7.5 poisons applied per second.
Last edited by hackergooby on Nov 15, 2021, 12:26:17 PM
Anyone using the build how are you generating frenzy and power charges?
korba wrote:
Anyone using the build how are you generating frenzy and power charges?

corrupt implicit "#% chance to gain power charge on critical strike" from one of the cold iron points for generating power charges.

blood rage for frenzy charges, if you want to generate frenzy charges from bosses you are going to need anomalous blood rage.
Have you thought about going Iron Reflexes? Just evasion+spell sup feels very squishy on Scourge and even though its a long trip to the passive you get a way tankier char with still amazing dps:


If you change the amy for an Aul's it should be even easier to fit grace+determination.
korba wrote:
Have you thought about going Iron Reflexes? Just evasion+spell sup feels very squishy on Scourge and even though its a long trip to the passive you get a way tankier char with still amazing dps:


If you change the amy for an Aul's it should be even easier to fit grace+determination.

Even without iron reflexes you could get at least 80% damage reduction with just molten shell, determination and defiance banner with 100% spell suppression and 80% evade on top.

I would keep spell suppression at 100% since its the one con full armor builds have which is dealing with spells unless they look into more max res etc.

Along with the 36% chance avoid physical and spell damage which we get from increased elusive effect and it always getting refreshed by mistwalker and withering step.

withering step and molten shell can be used simultaneously, could have one on right and the other on left click or whatever feels most comfortable.

wither stacks in pob could be reduced to 7-9 depending on withering step level or if its anomalous (adds 2 extra stacks of wither at 20 quality) for more consistent dps numbers while mapping since totems won't be down all the time.

Enlighten lvl 3 could be used instead of aul's to fit every aura into the build, lvl 4 would make it possible to add divergent precision back into the build but i don't think its that necessary considering how expensive it is for the amount of dps you get out of it.

Unsure if chaos mastery "20% increased wither effect" affects the wither from withering step, if it does this would be a nice dps increase that could replace evasion mastery "grace has 25% increased mana reservation efficiency" since its no longer needed with enlighten lvl 3 in the build.

Herald of agony is also out so circle of nostalgia could be replace with an influence ring since it doesn't do much anymore unless you want to try get herald of agony back in again.

Just make sure that your chance to poison is at 100% without coralito's active, something like anointing toxic strikes which is really cheap would fix this and still add an okay amount of damage.

For the free ring slot something like despair on hit from ring would be much cheaper to get compared to the corrupt implicit on asenath's. Would also make filling res or whatever else you might need easier. Chaos res on ring would make sirus way more forgiving to fight.

Cause of these changes impresence could be replaced until getting an influence amulet but it does have all round good stats for the build even if not used for reserving despair and cheap at this time of the league.

Here's a tree that i put together, still room for improvement and needs a new ring to replace circle of nostalgia. But physical damage reduction is a very good idea to add into the build. my dps in 3.15 was around 12m with 15 wither stacks so damage is very comparable to that even with all these changes made : https://pastebin.com/3ZQa3Uv7
Thanks! That looks very good indeed, I will try it and let you know how it works :)

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