[3.22] JR/Lk's Cold DoT Ele (Boss Rush Meta???) [League-start to over 40m DoT]

This build will carry you from league-start to end-game. The Crucible League Day 2 video showcases T14-T16 mapping on minimal gear.

This build is adapted from Jungroan's 3.20 Cold DoT Elementalist.

If you have any questions, ask away!

-Added video on Elder Guardian boss rush for 8 divs/hr

-Updated gloves influence explanation, priority/secondary stats

-Added video on Optimizing weapons for Cold DoT

-Removed Hinekora Makanga from recommended tattoos

-Updated recommended tattoos with details

-Added a section on recommended tattoos (still work in progress)

-Updated section on "Alternative to Skin of the Lords" under Items >> Chest

-Added video on 3.22 Day 2 League-start Gameplay

-Updated the POBs for 3.22
-Updated the Leveling section

-Updated the FAQ for "What gems should I switch if playing with an aurabot?"

-Added video on 3.22 League-start Atlas Strategy

-Minor edits to some FAQs for improved readability

-Added thoughts on the 3.22 patch notes (3rd post)
-Updated the rings section for Death Rush and Mark of Submission
-Updated Pantheon for mapping without Searing Exarch
-Archived 3.21 POBs

-Updated Defense mechanics under the mechanics section
-Added Offense mechanics under the mechanics section

-Added video on Non-damaging ailments mechanic explained (#1 Blunder)

-Updated information for the Frigid Wake Jewel Duo
-Updated FAQ answer for "Q: How does Eye of Malice compare with Devouring Diadem?"

-Linked some items as examples for the items section
-Updated tiers for Optional Helmet Enchantments

-Added video on Righteous Fire + Cold DoT

-Added corrupted implicit min-maxing for Legacy of Fury
-Linked some items as examples for the items section

-Added video on Best Crucible Passives for Cold DoT

-Changed life mastery on the standard build from +50 life to "15% increased maximum Life if there are no Life Modifiers on Equipped Body Armour".

-Added estimated cost breakdown at Week 4 of Crucible League for the standard build (no. 2)

-Added video on 80% Delirious Crucible League Gameplay
-Added SOK's 36.7m variant under Skill Trees/POB
-Added advanced "end-game" POB (standard variant)

-Added video on mobility gems to add quality
-Added section on quality on mobility gems under gem links

-Updated FAQ for "How does Eye of Malice compare with Devouring Diadem?"

-Added elaboration on Mark of the Shaper
-Added implicit recommendations for body armour

-Added gem link alternatives

-Updated Major Pantheon for pre and post Frigid Wake

-Added video on Higher DPS Variant Interview
-Added SonsOfKorhal's higher DPS variant under skill trees

-Updated weapon bases

-Added video on Skin of the Lords Alternatives and Tainted Crafting (https://youtu.be/jpIUj5Uzoa4)
-Added Mark of the Shaper for rings
-Added Curse on Hit for rings
-Updated enchantments for helmet

-Updated the Ailments section under defensive mechanics
Prior to 20/04/2023, incremental updates to the guide were made on a daily basis.

About the Author
I retired from POE racing in 2014.

I have some SSF experience. I was rank 20 in SCSSF Harvest League.

Videos New: Elder Guardian boss rush
Elder Guardian boss rush for 8 divs/hr: https://youtu.be/GQmpcqt3LoU

Optimizing weapons for Cold DoT: https://youtu.be/U_ugXJ5VGAA

Trial of the Ancestors League-start Day 2: https://youtu.be/JLWA8jR07qk

3.22 League-start Atlas Strategy: https://youtu.be/SMRxcOK9xh4

Non-damaging ailments mechanic explained (#1 Blunder): https://youtu.be/TIi4MCyw3mk

Interview with SOK (maximizing DPS on a "budget"): https://youtu.be/cezFGN1lb6o

80% Delirious Mapping: https://youtu.be/TSYJaALKWtA

Righteous Fire + Cold DoT Experiment: https://youtu.be/v4gVClbxzI8

Skin of the Lords Alternatives and Tainted Crafting: https://youtu.be/jpIUj5Uzoa4

Crucible League-start Day 2 T14-T16s: https://youtu.be/0PLxuwBt_bQ?t=503
Gear: https://pobb.in/A8KXCmpjzfhu
Day 2 gear estimated cost:

1. Devouring Diadem (3-4d)
2. 6L Chest (~60c)
3. Amulet (1c)
4. Both rings (Combined cost is less than 10c)
5. Wand (5c)
6. Shield (Less than 5c)
7. Belt (12c)
8. Boots (<1c) - I have since purchased a new pair of boots for ~5c
9. Virdian Jewel (10c or less)

Best Crucible Passives for Cold DoT: https://youtu.be/mrKqn_Dk2U4

60% Delirious Toxic Sewers: https://youtu.be/i2lLU9w4nPw

Vortex - put on left click so that it will automatically cast every few steps.

Vaal Cold Snap (VCS) - use on cooldown while mapping. It should be sufficient damage to walk through and kill most things (in combination with the vortex that you are automatically placing down every few steps).

When VCS is on, which is around 40% of the time during mapping, you are just running through the map while monsters around you die.

When VCS is on cooldown (soul gain prevention/gaining souls), you might use Creeping Frost to supplement the damage from Vortex. Since Vortex is automatically placed down, you are only casting one attack skill.

Frostbite/Elemental Weakness/Cold Snap are mainly only used on bosses or tanky rares.

60% Delirious Toxic Sewers: https://youtu.be/i2lLU9w4nPw

Passive Trees/Path of Building
POBs will be updated to the latest meta. Tattoos have their own section further down in the guide.

You need to fill the open suffixes on the rare items with elemental resistances/stats.

3.22 Leveling to early game POB:

lvl 80 (no Devouring Diadem): 0.9m DoT DPS, 28k EHP [5 link chest, lvl 18 gems]
lvl 90 (no Devouring Diadem): 3.2m DoT DPS, 49k EHP
lvl 90 (with Devouring Diadem): 3.1m DoT DPS, 58k EHP

Please see the Leveling section of this guide for the leveling gems

3.22 Mid-game POB:
Est 4-10 Divines, 4.9m DoT DPS, 60k EHP: https://pobb.in/H7zln16IgNAN
Est 8-15 Divines, 6.2m DoT DPS, 57k EHP: https://pobb.in/J9SBLfAJF91v
Est 13-20 Divines, 10.2m DoT DPS, 55k EHP: https://pobb.in/nUGNNeMUSGNV

3.22 Standard End-game:
Est 25-40 Divines, 16.2m DoT DPS, 71k EHP: https://pobb.in/-XmtLVAVmOpB
Est 35-50 Divines, 18.3m DoT DPS, 83k EHP: https://pobb.in/1Wxr1MTH00c4

3.22 Higher DPS Variant (higher DPS, lower defense):
43.6m DoT DPS, 57k EHP: https://pobb.in/2COcOTdtBMQV

3.21 Leveling POB: https://pastebin.com/P9VnR2kh

3.21 Standard End-game (with items):
1. 13.2m DoT DPS, 85k EHP: https://pobb.in/W4TB8O8vUWxm
2. 19.2m DoT DPS, 83k EHP: https://pobb.in/jWaa0sxBti51
No. 2 Estimated Cost Breakdown at Week 4 of Crucible League:
1. Devouring Diadem (with curse enchant) [2.5d]
2. Skin of the Lords Chest (with non-detrimental keystone) [20d]
3. Weapon (dagger with +2, spell dmg, cdot multi) [5d]
4. Shield [2d]
5. Amulet [2d]
6. Mark of the Shaper (high rolls + catalysts) [1d]
7. Elder ring [1d]
8. Gloves [1d]
9. Coward's Legacy Belt [1d]
10. Legacy of Fury Boots (with 6% max life implicit) [50c]
11. Frigid Wake Jewels Set [10d]
12. Watcher's Eye (Vul roll) [50c]
13. Cobalt Jewel (% resv. efficiency) [10c]
14. Flasks [70c]
15. Gems [7.5d]

Total estimated cost: 50-60d

3.21 SonsOfKorhal's Higher DPS Variant:
1. 25.7m DoT DPS 42k EHP: https://pastebin.com/weDNaRZ5
2. 36.7m DoT DPS 52k EHP: https://pobb.in/XNYa_2bSJ0cr
3. 41.1m DoT DPS 59k EHP: https://pobb.in/7OBXERcJbZcD

SonsOfKorhal explains his variant here: https://youtu.be/cezFGN1lb6o
Gameplay: https://youtu.be/TSYJaALKWtA

3.21 Righteous Fire + Cold DoT (NOT for beginners):
WARNING: RF + CDoT in its current state is an experimental/meme build
1. Before RF (49m DoT, 58k EHP): https://pobb.in/dRVv19dorWl5
2. After RF (79m DoT, 65k EHP): https://pobb.in/BumDiKzzGl75
Gameplay: https://youtu.be/v4gVClbxzI8

3.20 end-game POB: https://pastebin.com/H4wHCnZD
Original 3.20 YouTube video by Jungroan: https://youtu.be/1vFxwYDCpZE

Act 1:
1. Use Stormblast mines and Frostbomb for damage.
(Stormblast mines - Swift Assembly - Added Lightning Damage)
(Frostbomb) (Frostbomb is a 1-link)

2. Use frostblink for movement. Once you get flame dash, switch frostblink for flame dash.

Act 2:
1. Add Cold snap (Cold Snap - Efficacy - Controlled Destruction)

2. Run Herald of Thunder and Herald of Ice

Act 3:
1. Switch to 4L Vortex + Creeping Frost when you hit lvl 28.
(Vortex - Controlled Destruction - Swift Affliction - Elemental Focus)
(Creeping Frost - Controlled Destruction - Swift Affliction - Elemental Focus)

2. Upon switching to Vortex + Creeping Frost, drop Herald of Lightning and Herald of Ice for Malevolence.

3. Add frostbite for curse.

4. You may attempt Normal Lab

Act 4:
Add Bonechill support to Cold snap at lvl 38 (Cold Snap - Bonechill - Efficacy - Controlled Destruction).

Act 5:
Add elemental weakness when you have Whispers of Doom allocated.

Act 6:
1. Complete Lilly Roth's quest to unlock all gems. When you have gem slots, you can add:
For defense: Molten Shell (Lv 10) - Cast when Damage Taken (Lv 1)
For movement: Faster Attacks - Shield Charge
For damage: Divine Blessing (Lv 1) - Hatred

2. After Eldritch Battery is allocated, you can run two 50% auras. Choose 2 from these 3: Malevolence (DPS), Grace (defense), Determination (defense).

Act 7:
1. Add Defiance Banner after allocating Charisma.

2. You may attempt Cruel Lab

Act 10:
1. Add the final 50% aura (Malevolence/Grace/Determination) after allocating Sovereignty.

2. You may attempt Merciless Lab

Tattoos: New!
Notable Tattoos
We can only have one notable tattoo. My top selections are Wise / Berserker.

Honoured Tattoo of the Berserker

Effect: Grants "You gain Onslaught for 4 seconds on Hit", Replaces a +30 to Dexterity Notable Passive Skill.
Explanation: This choice is mobility oriented as our mobility benefits a lot from onslaught. Besides walking faster, our shield charge speed is improved too. The improved cast time also helps us with a lot of our spell casting (flame dash, curses, cold snap, etc.)
Recommended location: Agility
Link: https://www.poewiki.net/wiki/Honoured_Tattoo_of_the_Berserker

Honoured Tattoo of the Wise

Effect: Grants "+1 to Level of all Intelligence Skill Gems", Replaces a +30 to Intelligence Notable Passive Skill.
Explanation: This choice is DPS oriented. Our intelligence skill gems (e.g. Vortex and Creeping Frost) gain +1 gem levels which translates into higher DoT DPS.
Recommended location: Thief's Craft
Link: https://www.poewiki.net/wiki/Honoured_Tattoo_of_the_Wise

Non-notable Tattoos
We can have multiple non-notable tattoos.

My top selections are Tuatara, Dove, Oak, Flock and Hatungo. There is no strict suggestion because it depends on the rest of your items, what you find lacking for the content that you are mainly running (defense/offense), or even topping up some stats to equip an item that would otherwise be unfeasible.

The least valuable small passive nodes that we will replace are usually the INT nodes, since we may be short of DEX/STR for our gem attribute requirements. Therefore, we will generally be replacing INT nodes.

Honoured Tattoo of the Tuatara

Effect: Replaces a Small Attribute Passive Skill, Grants "+4 to all Attributes"
Explanation: This tattoo allows us to convert our INT passives into DEX and STR! Doing so relieves the requirement to acquire DEX and STR attributes on our gear, hereby increasing our options.
Link: https://www.poewiki.net/wiki/Honoured_Tattoo_of_the_Tuatara

Honoured Tattoo of the Dove

Effect: Replaces a Small Attribute Passive Skill, Grants "+4% to Chaos Resistance"
Explanation: Chaos resistances are hard to come by. Increasing our chaos resistances improves our defense.
Link: https://www.poewiki.net/wiki/Honoured_Tattoo_of_the_Dove

Honoured Tattoo of the Oak

Effect: Replaces a Small Attribute Passive Skill, Grants "2% increased maximum Life"
Explanation: Increases our life pool. If we have decent chaos resistances, increasing our maximum life might be more beneficial for our defenses.
Link: https://www.poewiki.net/wiki/Honoured_Tattoo_of_the_Oak

Honoured Tattoo of the Flock

Effect: Replaces a Small Attribute Passive Skill, Grants "1% increased effect of Non-Curse Auras from your Skills"
Explanation: Improves both our offense and defense. Boosts the effect of Malevolence, Hatred, Grace, Determination, Tempest Shield and Defiance Banner
Link: https://www.poewiki.net/wiki/Honoured_Tattoo_of_the_Flock

Honoured Tattoo of the Hatungo

Effect: Replaces a Small Attribute Passive Skill, Grants "1% increased Reservation Efficiency of Skills"
Explanation: Allows us to run Defiance Banner without having increased mana reservation efficiency on one of our jewels.
Link: https://www.poewiki.net/wiki/Honoured_Tattoo_of_the_Hatungo

Use a Wand/Sceptre/Rune Dagger
1. +1 cold spell skill gems / +1 spell skill gems
2. Cold damage over time multiplier / damage over time multiplier
3. Spell damage / Cold damage

1. Resistances

If you are playing trade league, I highly recommend using POB Trade to find weapon upgrades: https://youtu.be/U_ugXJ5VGAA

1. +1 cold spell skill gems / +1 spell skill gems
2. Spell damage / Cold damage
3. Life

1. Resistances
2. Block chance
3. Life recovery on block

#% increased Effect of Non-Damaging Ailments (Redeemer mod) on shield gives you a damage boost but that mod is quite rare.

If you are playing trade league, I highly recommend using POB Trade to find shield upgrades: https://youtu.be/U_ugXJ5VGAA


Early-Mid game
1. Life
2. Resistances
3. Dexterity

Final helmet

Unique: Devouring Diadem with a useful roll (DEX/STR/Chaos resist)

Optional Helmet Enchantments:
Tier 1:
1. % increased Frostbite Curse Effect
2. % increased Elemental Weakness Curse Effect

Tier 2:
1. Vortex has % increased Cooldown Recovery Rate
2. % increased Vortex Damage
3. % increased Vortex Area of Effect
4. Flame Dash has % increased Cooldown Recovery Rate / Frostblink has % increased maximum travel distance (depends on which you use)


Early-Mid game

1. Life
2. Resistances
3. Dexterity

1. Craft: % increased effect of non-damage ailments
2. Anointment: Ash, Frost and Storm

End game

Anointment: Ash, Frost and Storm
Craft: % increased effect of non-damage ailments (Explanation: https://youtu.be/TIi4MCyw3mk)
1. +1 Level of All Skill Gems / +1 Level of All Cold Skill Gems
2. Damage over time multiplier
3. Spell damage / Cold damage
4. Life

1. Resistances
2. Dexterity


Early-Mid game

1. Life
2. Resistances
3. Dexterity

End game
1. Life
2. Resistances

1. Vermillion Ring base for % life
2. Dexterity
3. % increased damage

Some other considerations:
1. Death Rush

Death rush is a decent consideration for mapping. The Adrenaline buff on kill is quite strong. It provides:
1. 100% increased damage
2. 25% increased attacks, cast and movement speed
3. 10% additional damage reduction

2. Mark of the Shaper + Elder Ring Combo

An optional super late game consideration is using Mark of the Shaper with an Elder ring for more DPS. https://www.poewiki.net/wiki/Mark_of_the_Shaper
Getting a good Elder ring can be very expensive. You will probably have to sacrifice some life/stats. The "Summon Volatile Anomaly on Kill" helps a bit with map clear.

I have been asked about curse on hit rings. Below is my reply:
You can use curse on hit rings but something else will have to give.

A simple ring with at least 75 life 100% resistances currently costs around 5 chaos on trade.

If you wish to add a curse on hit stat on the ring, the cost will balloon to 8 divines and beyond (in fact, there are currently only 4 of such rings listed on trade even if you include the players who are offline).

If you wish to get better stats, such a ring may not even be available for sale on the entire server! Either that or the price will be exorbitant.

As the doom mechanic has been removed, auto and self-cast is the same.

Btw we typically only use curses on tanky rares and bosses, so self-casting will not slow down our mapping.

I have been asked about Mark of Submission. Below is my reply:
My thoughts:
When mapping, we only cast curses on the map boss or tanky rares.

Firstly, if normal mobs regularly require us to curse them, we are probably attempting to complete a map beyond our ability, and I would think trying to kill the map boss in such a map would take a long time. I will not run maps that overly difficult on leaguestart because it is not time efficient.

Secondly, we don't even "hit" all of the mobs. Mobs will die from the vortex that you left on the ground and vaal cold snap, and they are not considered as being hit.

So I personally won't run Mark of Submission even on Day 1 because most of the time having a rare ring is better. I would not want to give up 70% resistances and 200 life for some regular mobs to be cursed when they will usually die without.

If you prefer to run Mark of Submission, it will not break your build and you will still do mostly fine.

Early game

1. Life
2. Resistances
3. Dexterity

Mid-End game

Eater influence: Inflict cold exposure on hit (This line is compulsory for cold exposure. Before you get cold exposure on gloves, you can get exposure from 1L Frost Bomb.)

Exarch influence: +% Cold DoT multiplier / When unique enemy is in your presence +% Cold DoT multiplier

1. Life
2. Resistances

1. Dexterity
2. % increased area of effect
3. Socketed gems deal % more damage over time
4. +2 level of socketed AoE gems
5. % increased damage during any flask effect

When we transition into the late game, we will need decent life and resistances on gloves to support the uniques that we will be equipping.

Early-Mid game

1. Movement speed
2. Life
3. Resistances
4. Dexterity

Final boots

Unique: Legacy of Fury (prioritise % chance to burn)
This unique boosts our mapping clear speed. When we kill a scorched enemy, the surrounding monsters will receive the burnt effect.
For min-maxing, get a corrupted Legacy of Fury with a useful corrupted implicit. The full list of vaal implicits for STR/DEX boots can be viewed here: https://www.craftofexile.com/?b=42&ob=both&v=d&a=e&l=a&lg=13&bp=y&as=1&hb=0&bld={}&im={}&ggt=|&ccp={}

Early game

1. Life
2. Resistances
3. Dexterity

Mid game
1. Stygian Belt Base
2. Life
3. Resistances
4. Regenerate 150 Energy Shield Per Second while a Rare or Unique Enemy is Nearby / % increased damage

Final belt

Unique: Coward's Legacy
The purpose of the belt is so that we are considered as low life. Then we add the "Pain Attunement" node on the skill tree for 30% more damage. Alternatively, "Pain Attunement" can be obtained on the chest piece.

Early-Mid game

1. Life
2. Resistances
3. Dexterity

Best Exarch implicit: increased effect of non-curse auras from your skills.
Good Eater implicits: increased aura effect of malevolence/hatred in the presence of a unique enemy (or the generic version without presence of a unique enemy)

End-game chest

Unique: Skin of the Lords
If you can afford it, get the "Pain Attunement" keystone as it will save you 1SP. "Lethe Shade", "Ghost Dance" and "Iron Will" are also beneficial. Otherwise, pick a keystone that does not detriment your character.

Alternatives to Skin of the Lords:
The cheaper alternatives either replicate the defense or the offense of Skin of the Lords. Pick one according to your preference.


Unique: Skin of the Loyal
Skin of the Loyal provides the same defenses as Skin of the Lords for a sacrifice of +1 to all socketed gem levels (eventually +2 to skill gems). We should be using Empower lvl 3/4 here.

We can use chests with double corrupted implicits to obtain +4 levels to Vortex and Creeping Frost.

The tier list is:
1. +1 socketed gems, +2 socketed duration gems (BBBBGR)
2. +1 socketed gems, +2 socketed AoE gems (BBBBGR)
3. +2 socketed duration gems, +2 socketed AoE gems (BBBBGR)
4. +2 socketed duration gems, +2 socketed AoE gems (BBBBGG)

1>2 because swift affliction has the duration tag, and hence will gain 2 levels from +2 socketed duration.

2>3 because +1 socketed gems adds a level to all support gems.

3>4 is because it allows further scaling from Empower 4.

The power level of Empower Lv3 is similar to that from Hypothermia Lv 21. Both provide ~30% more DoT damage. The gem set-up for 1-3 uses Empower instead of Hypothermia in 4. Hence if you have Empower lvl 4, the set-up of 1 and 2 will be more powerful than 3.

The advantage of using a chest aside from Skin of the Lords is that you can get life, resistances, and other buffs such as increased AoE and damage from Carcass Jack. These benefits, in a good chest can match or even be better than Skin of the Lords for a lower price.

We can use tainted crafting to turn bases with suitable corrupted implicits into 6L chests in a cheap manner. For the socket colours, you can use benchcraft if the base has an INT requirement. If the base does not have an INT requirement, getting the right colours will be difficult.

Example trade search: https://www.pathofexile.com/trade/search/Crucible/gDJnzb7cQ

We have four jewel slots. The end game set-up includes two unique forbidden jewels. Meanwhile, fill the jewel slots with rare jewels/Watcher's Eye.

Mid game: 4 rare jewels / 3 rare jewels + Watcher's Eye
End game: 1 rare jewel + Watcher's Eye + Forbidden Jewel Duo Set

Rare Jewels
1. % cold damage over time multiplier
2. % damage over time multiplier
3. % life
4. Spell damage / Cold damage

1. Resistances/Attributes
2. Corrupted blood immunity

If you wish to run Defiance Banner on top of Determination, Grace, Malevolence and Tempest Shield, you need a jewel with at least 2% mana reservation efficiency.

Watcher's Eye Jewel

Unique: Watcher's Eye
The price of the Watcher's Eye jewel will vary based on the aura modifiers.
If you are using Coward's Legacy, get the line "Unaffected by Vulnerability while affected by Determination".

Forbidden Jewel Duo Set

Uniques: Forbbiden Flame & Forbbiden Flesh
The ascendancy notable that we want is "Frigid Wake". You need both jewels to get Frigid Wake. Therefore, equipping one jewel without the other is pointless. Frigid Wake grants freeze immunity and allows you to switch your Major Pantheon from Soul of the Brine King to Lunaris.

Trade search links:


1. Divine Life flask (preferably 50% recovered instantly and grants immunity to corrupted blood)
2. Quartz flask (phasing is important)

Recommended additions:
1. Quicksilver flask
2. Jade flask
3. Granite flask

Recommended suffixes on non-life flasks:
1. Increased evasion rating effect
2. Increased armour during effect
3. Reduced effect of curses during effect
4. Freeze immunity (until you get 100% chance to avoid being frozen from Pantheon)
5. Increased movement speed

Gem Links
5L chest: Vortex - Creeping Frost - Controlled Destruction - Swift Affliction - Elemental Focus

6L chest: Vortex - Creeping Frost - Controlled Destruction - Swift Affliction - Elemental Focus - Hypothermia

Late game chest: Vortex - Creeping Frost - Awakened Controlled Destruction - Awakened Swift Affliction - Awakened Elemental Focus - Empower

Gloves: Vaal Cold Snap - Bonechill - Efficacy - (Awakened) Controlled Destruction

Helmet (before DD): Determination + Grace + Malevolence + Defiance Banner

Devouring Diadem Helmet: Determination + Grace + Malevolence + Tempest Shield

Gem slots can be switched between weapons and boots.

Weapon 1: Frostbite + Hatred - Divine Blessing

If you have insufficient ES to run a high level Divine Blessing, keep the gem at a lower level.

Weapon 2: Elemental Weakness + Molten Shell (Lv 10) - Cast when Damage Taken (Lv 1)

Boots: Faster Attacks - Shield Charge - Culling Strike - Flame Dash/Frost Blink

Modifications for consideration:
You may consider switching out Culling Strike and Faster Attacks for the below:
Arcanist Brand - Frostbite - Elemental Weakness
Defiance Banner (you need Devouring Diadem and 2% mana reservation efficiency from a jewel)

Map faster with increased mobility from quality on these gems:
Video: https://youtu.be/sa_FRvW02do

Get 20% quality on:
1. Flame Dash
2. Shield Charge
3. Faster Attacks

Alternate quality gems for consideration:
1. Anomalous Flame Dash
2. Divergent Frost Blink
3. Phantasmal Leap Slam (Sceptre required)

Bandits/Lab order/Pantheon
Bandits: Kill all bandits because we need the 2SP

Lab order:
1. Shaper of Storms
2. Mastermind of Discord
3. Heart of Destruction
4. Bastion of Elements

We get cold exposure from the eater implicit on the gloves. Prior to that, use 1L Frost Bomb for bosses.

Major Pantheon
Before Frigid Wake jewels: Soul of the Brine King
It is essential to unlock the 100% chance to avoid getting frozen as we will be relying on this for freeze immunity until we get our Forbidden flesh jewels.

After Frigid Wake jewels:
Mapping: Soul of Lunaris

Pinnacle Bossing: Soul of Solaris

Minor Pantheon
Bossing: Soul of Ryslatha for the flask recharge and recovery

Mapping with Searing Exarch: Soul of Abberath with the burning ground immunity unlocked.

Mapping w/o Searing Exarch: Soul of Gruthkul


We have four main sources of Cold DoT:
1. Vortex - creates a ground degen
2. Creeping Frost - fires a projectile that creates a ground degen on impact, the area spreads to enemies
3. Vaal Cold Snap - monsters around you receive cold damage
4. Cold Snap - creates a ground degen

Skill gem level scaling
Our DoT DPS from each damage source increases based on gem levels. Below are the main methods of increasing gem levels:
1. Leveling the gem itself, and corrupting a lvl 20 gem with a Vaal Orb for lvl 21

2. +global gem level from items, such as weapon, shield, amulet

3. +socketed gem level

4. Support gem increases gem levels, such as empower and awakened ele focus.

5. In 3.22, we will also be able to increase skill gem levels from tattoos.

You can find the skill gem stats here:

Generic damage modifiers
Generic damage modifiers can be found everywhere. The below modifiers scale our DoT damage:
Increased/more Damage
Increased/more Spell Damage
Increased/more Elemental Damage
Increased/more Cold Damage
Increased/more Damage Over Time
Increased/more Damage Over Time Multiplier
Increased/more Cold Damage over Time Multiplier

Common Sources:
1. Skill points
2. Items
3. Auras
4. Support gems

Common pitfalls:
1. "Adds xx to xx (Cold) Damage" and similar "adds damage" modifiers does almost nothing. All these "adds damage" modifiers only increases the damage of the initial skill cast, and does not improve our DoT damage. Since our DPS mainly comes from DoT, the effective DPS increase is negligible.

2. "Increased Elemental Damage with Attack Skills" does nothing. Vortex, CF, VCS and CS are not attack skills.

Reducing monster cold resistance
By reducing the monsters' cold resistances, our DoT damage increases. A monster with 40% cold resistance only receives 60% (100%-40%) of our cold damage. Meanwhile, a monster with -20% cold resistance receives 120% (100%-(-20%)) of our cold damage.

Main sources:
1. Curses (frostbite and elemental weakness)
2. Cold Exposure (frost bomb/gloves implicit)
3. Scorch (from Legacy of Fury/scorched ground boots)

Bonechill causes our cold damage to scale with increased chill effect. Meaning, the more chill we apply to our foes, the more cold damage they take.

Shock from the Shaper of Storms ascendancy node increases the damage taken from enemies.
More info on shock: https://www.poewiki.net/wiki/Shock

Freeze immunity: Early game immunity is from Soul of the Brine King freeze immunity unlock. Late game immunity is from the Frigid Wake jewels.

Shock immunity: Upon equipping Devouring Diadem, we run Tempest Shield.

Chill immunity: Late game immunity is from the Frigid Wake jewels.
Bleed/Corrupted blood: From life flask. The Tolerance cluster also provides 40% bleed avoidance. Taking protection mastery for Corrupted blood immunity is an option.

Life recovery: From Feast of Flesh on Devouring Diadem https://www.poewiki.net/wiki/Feast_of_Flesh

Elemental reflect: Bastion of Elements (ascendancy)

Chaos resistances: From items and the Tolerance cluster.

Primal Aegis: From the Bastion of Elements ascendancy node. This shield increases our effective life pool by absorbing damage taken.

General Damage Mitigation
Our general damage mitigation is mainly from stacking armour and evasion. It is also topped up with spell block from Tempest shield and attack block from wielding a shield.

Evading physical damage: Evasion allows us to fully avoid damage from certain attacks. We gain evasion rating from items and skill points. Grace aura boosts our evasion rating. Skin of the Lord's increased global defenses is a huge boost to evasion.

Blocking Attack Damage: Wielding a shield grants us ~25% block chance, so ~25% of attacks that are not evaded are fully nullified.

Mitigating physical damage received: Armour reduces the physical damage taken from each physical damage source. Items and skill points grant armour. Determination and Defiance Banner auras also boost our armour. Skin of the Lord's increased global defenses is a huge boost to armour. Molten shell also absorbs some physical damage.

Blocking Spell Damage: Tempest shield grants us 26% spell block chance, so spell damage is fully nullified 26% of the time.
YouTube Channel: www.youtube.com/@LkGG-Gaming
Devouring Diadem CDoT Guide: www.pathofexile.com/forum/view-thread/3362183
Last edited by LkGGz on Sep 24, 2023, 3:50:55 AM
Last bumped on Oct 1, 2023, 4:27:59 AM

Q: How does Eye of Malice compare with Devouring Diadem?
A: TLDR: Eye of Malice is better for pinnacle bossing while Devouring Diadem is better for mapping. If you spend most of your time mapping, Devouring Diadem is a better fit.

Using Eye of Malice Pros:
1. The helmet is cheaper
2. We gain more damage when both curses are being used
3. 80% resistances is better than the unveiled line in most cases

Now no. 2 is debatable because Devouring Diadem saves you so many skill points that you may end up with higher damage.

Devouring Diadem Pros:
1. Devouring Diadem has more damage than Eye of Malice when curses have yet to be applied
2. We save 4SP from the Vampirism cluster because Feast of Flesh provides recovery
3. We save 3SP from Eldritch Battery because DD has EB inbuilt into it
4. You can run any map mod on Devouring Diadem. You can run poison on hit and no regeneration maps because of the 10% chance for ES to recharge to start when you use a skill and feast of flesh (otherwise, poison on hit maps are impossible to run without poison immunity)
5. Your auras gain +1 gem level
6. You can run an additional Tempest Shield aura for shock immunity and spell block
7. Smoother mapping (higher QoL) due to Feast of Flesh providing up to 4k Life and ES recovery every 5 seconds.

(points 2 and 3 assumes those nodes are taken when using Eye of Malice)

Q: Why Elementalist over Occultist?
A: Elementalist has more damage and defense than Occultist.

Occultist has better map clear early on due to Profane Bloom, until Elementalist acquires legacy of fury boots, then the map clear of Elementalist will be comparable to Occultist.

Q: Why Elementalist over Trickster?
A: TLDR: Trickster is better for low budget, Elementalist is better for medium to high budget.

Low budget: Elementalist has more damage than Trickster. Trickster has better defense and quality of life than Elementalist.

Medium to high budget: Elementalist has multiple times more damage than Trickster. Quality of life of both are comparable. Trickster’s defense may still be stronger than Elementalist. If you are playing a softcore league, dying once every 30 maps for way more damage is probably a good trade-off.

Lastly, for the one-character-a-league players, if you decide that you want to play another build without restarting your character, the build transition choices for Witch are much more versatile than Shadow.

Q: How do we inflict exposure?
We will be using 1L Frost Bomb until we get a glove with the inflict cold exposure implicit.

Glove trade search link:https://www.pathofexile.com/trade/search/Crucible/mjEJjewu6

Q: I am facing mana problems in Act 7.
The simplest solution is to spend 3SP to allocate Eldritch Battery earlier.

Q: How will you prioritise your item progression in the early game?
A: The build contains 7 key uniques for the late game. Before acquiring them, use rare items with good stats. Below is the order of priority:

1. Legacy of Fury - Great boost for mapping speed. Prioritise chance to scorch.

2. Devouring Diadem - Allows you to run four auras and Feast of Flesh is a huge boost to survivalbility

3. Skin of the Lords - +2 level of socketed gems is a huge boost for your DPS (3.21 update: Due to breach nerfs driving the price of Skin of the Lords up, please read the item section on alternatives to Skin of the Lords)

4. Coward's Legacy - ~30% more DPS from being low life (you need to allocate Pain Attunement)

5. Watcher's Eye with "unaffected by Vulnerability while affected by Determination" - reduces the effect of Vulnerability.

6. Forbidden Flame and Forbidden Flesh with "Frigid Wake" - Increased survivability and damage. The reason this is the last upgrade is because of the expensive price.

Q: Are there any map mods that should be rerolled?
A: After Devouring Diadem, you can do all map mods.

Prior to Devouring Diadem, avoid:
1. Poison on hit - because it will stop your ES (which is used for mana) from regenerating.
2. No regeneration - because your ES will not regenerate
3. Less regeneration - you can run this mod but it is not recommended

Q: How good is this build for the various game content at league-start?
Tier 1:

Tier 2:
Pinnacle Bossing

Tier 3: CDot can clear all of the below content, but there are better builds for them.
Einhar - This build maps very fast, and the beasts force you to slow down (happy problem). Incompatible mapping style.
Heist - This is not a giga movement speed build
Legion - Too much ground to cover
Blight - Too much ground to cover

Q: Why are you running a wand/sceptre + shield combination instead of a 2H staff?
A: The main reasons are mobility, defense and total affix lines.

1. We cannot run shield charge without a shield. Shield charge is important for mapping speed.

1. We cannot run tempest shield without a shield.
2. Lower block chance

Total affix lines:
It is easier to yield better stats from the Wand + Shield combination than using a staff only. Take note that staff affixes are stronger than wand affixes, but even then it is 6 vs 12.
Wand + Shield: 12 (6+6) lines of affixes available and 2 craft-able mods (outside of multi-mod)
Staff: 6 lines of affixes and 1 craft-able mod (outside of multi-mod)

Q: How does this build fare for league-start bossing?
A: Cold DoT is one of the best league-start bossing builds.

In the 3.20 gauntlet (HCSSF boss kill race event), four skills were banned:
1. Vortex
2. Creeping Frost

3. Detonate Dead
4. Seismic Trap

Vortex and Creeping Frost are so good at bossing that they were banned from the race event.

Link: https://www.reddit.com/r/pathofexile/comments/1094jkw/ziz_seismic_dd_creeping_frost_and_vortex/

Q: Can this build do The Feared?
Yes. It can do all Maven Invitations.

Q: Why am I dying to reflect?
You need to add Bastion of Elements for reflect immunity.

Q: What gems should I switch if playing with an aurabot?
A: With an aurabot, you can run Vaal Righteous Fire for a huge DPS boost because you will have 90% res and a lot of regen from Vitality.

You can drop Grace, Determination, Hatred, Divine Blessing and Malevolence.

1. Vaal Righteous Fire
2. Helmet: Empower - Arcanist Brand - Frostbite - Elemental Weakness
3/4/5. Flesh and Stone/ Defiance Banner / Culling Strike / Vaal Haste / Flame Golem (it may die a lot) / Decoy Totem

You need a white socket on your Grace gem to replace it with Arcanist Brand. Also, you may need 1-2 white sockets for 3/4/5.

I'm assuming you are playing with an aurabot from time to time, not building around having an aurabot around all the time.

3.21 related

Q: Why are you playing JR's Cold Dot Ele. over Ziz's 3.21 Cold Dot Ele.?
A: Ziz's 3.21 Cold Dot Ele uses mana and requires a mana flask, which brings along a whole host of issues. Also, Taste of Hate flask cannot be automated which is a huge L to quality of life.

Q: As Devouring Diadem drop chance has been nerfed, will the prices skyrocket to the moon in 3.21?
A: I don’t think so. While the supply of Devouring Diadem will go down, I believe that the demand for the item will also be decreased in 3.21.

The top four users of Devouring Diadem in 3.20 are Seismic Trap, Spark, Explosive Trap and Toxic Rain. All these four builds have received significant nerfed. Hence, the item demand will much be lower.

Also, Devouring Diadem was expensive because content creators like Jungroan created builds that used it. Now that these content creators are not promoting Devouring Diadem builds, the demand will be much lower than the previous league.

The item might be (slightly) more expensive in 3.21, but it will not suffer the same fate as Crystallised Omniscience.
YouTube Channel: www.youtube.com/@LkGG-Gaming
Devouring Diadem CDoT Guide: www.pathofexile.com/forum/view-thread/3362183
Last edited by LkGGz on Aug 14, 2023, 12:21:55 PM
Thoughts on 3.22 patch notes
TLDR: There are no direct buffs/nerfs.

Frigid wake received a miniscule buff. This is technically a direct buff but it will probably be barely noticeable for us.
Due to the discovery of a bug where Frigid Wake was incorrectly using a fixed-duration freeze, causing it to not be affected by freeze duration modifiers, we have made the below change. The described bug has also been fixed.

Frigid Wake: No longer has "Every 4 seconds, 33% chance to Freeze nearby Chilled Unique Enemies for 0.6 seconds" or "Every 4 seconds, Freeze nearby Chilled Non-Unique Enemies for 0.6 seconds." It now has "Every 4 seconds, 50% chance to Freeze nearby Non-Frozen Enemies for 0.6 seconds."

The best Sanctum runner builds were those off-screen damage dealers. With the nearby requirement, Cold DoT is relatively better at Sanctum in 3.22. Nonetheless, Cold DoT will not be an Tier 1 Sanctum runner. If you intend to play "endless Sanctum", I don't recommend Cold DoT.
Monsters in the Forbidden Sanctum are immune to damage if there is no player within 100 units of them.

Sad to see Toxic Sewers and Grotto gone as they were Tier 1 maps for Cold DoT.
The following Maps have been removed from the Atlas: (...) Grotto (...) Toxic Sewer (...)

Cold DoT is a Tier 1 build for expedition. My league-start atlas for the last two leagues were delirium based, but I may run expedition this time.
Added a new Atlas Keystone Passive Skill, Extreme Archaeology, which grants "200% increased Explosive Radius in your Maps", "100% increased Explosive Placement Range in your Maps", "Expedition Monsters in your Maps spawn with an additional 10% of Life missing" and "Number of Explosives is one".

Cold DoT is one of the best Maven atlas boss farmers. It is unclear whether the additional bosses multiply the chance of receiving guardian maps/etc, it would be quite insane if they did. I'm looking forward to this keystone.
Added a new Atlas Keystone Passive Skill, Destructive Play, which grants "The Maven summons 1 to 3 additional Bosses when Witnessing Map Bosses. Modifiers to the Final Map Boss in each Map also apply to these summoned Bosses."

I noticed some nerfs for other league-starters:

EA Ballista:
The "Totems Taunt Enemies around them for 1 second when Summoned" Totem Mastery has been replaced with "1% of Physical Attack Damage dealt by your Totems is Leeched to you as Life."

Poison related:
The Veiled modifier which grants increased Duration of Ailments you inflict while Focused modifier now has values of 36-40% (previously 81-90%). Crafted versions of this modifier have been adjusted accordingly.
YouTube Channel: www.youtube.com/@LkGG-Gaming
Devouring Diadem CDoT Guide: www.pathofexile.com/forum/view-thread/3362183
Last edited by LkGGz on Aug 10, 2023, 10:57:28 PM
Reserved 3
YouTube Channel: www.youtube.com/@LkGG-Gaming
Devouring Diadem CDoT Guide: www.pathofexile.com/forum/view-thread/3362183



looking at our OLD CDOT builds from many leagues ago, we discovered that... we used to run VAAL RIGHTEOUS FIRE!

some redditors who have constructively criticised that while we claimed the build was fast at mapping, it wasn't fast enough to be categorised as so. (naturally, since we're CDOT, not some KB CF off screen clear build).

taking the suggestions together, i've tried running both Death Rush and Vaal Righteous Fire together, and the results have been hilarious. it IS gimmicky, but it DOES work. and for most players, you might enjoy the much much faster map runs. death rush is viable and suitable without RF/VRF. VRF is easy to incorporate for a 20% more dps where required, and RF is possible if you can clear sufficiently fast. I also mentioned in the reddit that in no way we are advocating this as THE WAY to play CDOT, but i personally enjoy it and have no issues with monitoring the HP.

currently 66.2k EHP, 4350HP, 24.7k EV, 22.2k AR, 75% all res, 29% chaos res, +127% movespeed.

POB has to be 100% delirious (20% of dps) to show dps (as creeping frost has hit DoT cap).

103.6m combined dps (against guardian/pinnacle boss). what the hell i dont even have enough time to set up curses or cold snap chilling ground anymore.

37.3m creeping frost
35.4m vortex
16.8m vaal cold snap
14.0m cold snap

compared to guide video,
shield was upgraded (10d)
amulet was upgraded (6d)
watcher's eye was upgraded (7d)
chest upgraded to +1 (20d)
chest upgraded again to +1/+2 (75d)
belt upgraded (6d)
boots changed (3d, 1% dps increase, but big increase in health + res + QOL due to onslaught)
flask changed (11d, but not "dps" increase)
death rush (max rolls, 50c, +20 fertile catalyst, 80c)
boots, ring, gloves changed again (3-5d, rearranging some resistances)
amulet upgraded again (20d)
gloves changed (2d)
gems adjusted for lvl/qual/alt (~2d), flask for % spell leech

empower 5
Last edited by SonsOfKorhal on May 17, 2023, 9:11:42 AM
how will you prioritise your item progression in the early game?
SonsOfKorhal wrote:
how will you prioritise your item progression in the early game?

The build contains 7 key uniques for the late game. Before acquiring them, use rare items with good stats. Below is the order of priority:

1. Legacy of Fury - Great boost for mapping speed. Prioritise chance to scorch.

2. Devouring Diadem - Allows you to run four auras and Feast of Flesh is a huge boost to survivalbility

3. Skin of the Lords - +2 level of socketed gems is a huge boost for your DPS

4. Coward's Legacy - ~30% more DPS from being low life (you need to allocate Pain Attunement)

5. Watcher's Eye with "unaffected by Vulnerability while affected by Determination" - reduces the effect of Vulnerability.

6. Forbidden Flame and Forbidden Flesh with "Frigid Wake" - Increased survivability and damage. The reason this is the last upgrade is because of the expensive price. (Who knows? It might be cheap in 3.21 if the crowd does not play Cold DoT.)
YouTube Channel: www.youtube.com/@LkGG-Gaming
Devouring Diadem CDoT Guide: www.pathofexile.com/forum/view-thread/3362183
What league mechanics do you recommend to play at start of the league with this build?
Or are there mechanics that i should avoid?
Last edited by Lheas on Apr 6, 2023, 6:17:23 AM
Are you updating this pob to 3.21 ? Very interested in this build !!
Awesome post, I never thought about elementalist for cold dot before. Hope you can keep the post updated if you figure stuff out in 3.21! :)

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