[1.1.x] Cast on Crit Scion/Shadow with Max Block - Song of Ice and Fire. Cheap. Fun. Powerful.

This build allowed me to get to 78 maps in Domination playing mostly solo.

Build has Shadow version, which may be even better.



+ Fast clear speed and decent survivability
+ Cheap
- Weak against lightning thorns, corrupted blood, physical spells and to a lesser extent elemental reflect
- Mess of ice and fire on the screen, not party-friendly

GMP Spectral Throw procs lots of GMP Fireballs and Acric Breaths destroying everything with the help of elemental equilibrium. Mana is not a problem since ST is cheap and casts are free.

75% block, 4k+ life, Ondar's Guile, Acrobatics and infinite flasks make this build pretty tanky for crit ranged evasion one.

1.2.0 passive skills. There are trees in posts after that one too.

Map videos were made before 1.1.2 Arctic Breath buff. Build is even more powerful now!

Courtyard (78) Map (1.1.0)

Shrine (77) Map using 1-3 chaos gear (1.1.0)

Dominus Runs (1.1.2) (no EE keystone)

Merciless Dominus (1.0.5) (unfinished build)

Defence/offence screens
Please note that Fireball damage on screenshot doesn't include Concentrated effect "more" multiplier.


Passive skills and bandits

This is 106 points, add Phase Acrobatics for 111.

It may be well worth it to take Phase Acrobatics before going to Ranger area. The tree above is 106 points because screenshots and videos were made with this tree.

After shadow starting area buff its elemental and spell damage nodes may be worth taking too.


Normal - Oak
Cruel - Eramir (Kraityn if you want more IAS)
Merciless - Eramir (Alira if you use 6L Voll's, PCoC or some other way to generate power charges)

Important Notables and Keystones

Elemental Equilibrium. We deal all 3 damage types: ST - lightning, spells - fire and cold. Fireball and arctic breath have the same projectile speed, therefore if both spells are triggered multiple times, fire and cold damage will alternate making every hit benefit from EE. EE effectively adds 50 to 200% MORE damage unless monster resist is more than 112%, and it is definitely worth 8 or so passive points. EE is not that good if you prefer close combat and shotgun a lot. 5-projectile shotgun damage is up to 20% lower with EE than without. EE is bad in party with Anger or Hatred aura. If you are going to do it often, start as Shadow and spend these points elsewhere.

Ballistic Mastery. Believe me, 20% projectile speed makes a real difference for ST. Without Ballistics character feels more like melee with all dangers it implies, with Ballistics you melt monsters from safe distance, able to hit almost any spot on the screen. If you doubt it, try Karui Ward amulet and see how it changes gameplay.

Dervish. 75% block is a main defensive point of this build. Without Dervish you have 59% block (41% damage is taken). With 75% block you take 25% damage, which is almost 40% less. Also, don't underestimate 2% block node near Ondar's Guile, same math shows that you take almost 8% less damage from attacks with 75% block than with 73%.

Acrobatics. 30% dodge with 1 skill point, 40% dodge and 30% spell dodge with Phase Acrobatics. This adds a new layer of defense, and doesn't cost much since we are going full evasion.

Ondar's Guile. This keystone is a main reason I like Evasion builds. If you evade 47.5% of melee attacks, which is easily achievable with grace and jade flask, Ondar's Guile makes you evade 95% of ranged attacks. This allows to completely disregard tentacle miscreations, corpse spitters, Piety ice form etc.

Twin Terrors are straightforward, and don't need much explanation. Note that it only affects ST crit, not spell critical. This is the reason I don't recommend taking Nightstalker unless you go for Eldrich Battery for some reason.

Other notables just add IAS or life.

Skill gems
ST (level 5) - GMP - CoC - Fireball (4L) - Arctic Breath (5L) - Concentrated Effect (6L).

Grace - Clarity (level depends on your mana pool) - Purity of Elements - Reduced Mana.

Critical Weakness - Decoy Totem - Blood Magic (+ Faster Casting or increased AoE if on 4L).

Gems in bold are must, the rest is up to you. Options include manual spell for reflect/thorns/corrupted blood, Searing Bond, Lightning Warp, Whirling Blades, Portal, ST-GMP(LMP) with PCoC and/or LGoH, Vaal ST or Cyclone CoC 4L. Concentrated Effect is a good 6th gem, but Arc, PCoC, Life Leech and eventually Knockback and Ice Spear are also among options. One of possible setups for the rest of links:

CwDT (level 1) - Enduring Cry - Frost Wall.
CwDT (max level) - Enfeeble - Immortal Call - Increased Duration.
Whirling Blades (level 3) - Faster Attacks - IIR - Culling Strike.

Primary targets for Quality on gems: ST, GMP, CoC, then Critical Weakness.

Frost Wall on CwDT protects both from monsters and from reflect and thorns blocking our own spells when we take reflected damage. You may see this in the beginning of Courtyard video. Remove it if you play in party.

In Ambush league use Smoke Mine to open strongboxes and stay safe.

Power charge on Critical vs Concentrated Effect
Critical Mass node and Alira's merc bandit reward give us 5 power charges.

PCoC vs CE
- 7% less DPS (see "DPS calculations" section for more detail)
+ 30% more spell procs with charges up (more consistent damage)
+ 30% AoE radius
- 2 passive points, one with expensive respec
- 110% mana multiplier (CE's 160% don't affect ST cost)
- PCoC only adds dps when we have charges
- Lose potential benefits of other ways of getting charges such as Conduit in party

Dual Ungil's Gauches provide 55% block and 180% global crit. Buy +20 dex ones, physical damage doesn't matter. Cap resists, then get as much life as you can, then add accuracy, crit, spell damage, IAS and IIR if possible. 6th link adds 67% MORE damage compared to 5L, therefore I highly recommend Tabula Rasa. Of course, you can use "real" 6L armor too or stick to a good life/resist evasion or unique 5L. 6L Carcass Jack is good for both defense and offense, 6L Voll's Protector is the best DPS booster. Rat's nest is very strong crit helm, get it too. Maligaro's are low priority, they make gameplay smoother without significant increase in dps. Good, if you can afford them without sacrificing quality of items in other slots.

Don't use any items with flat "adds x-y" fire or cold damage, because it breaks elemental equilibrium. Lightning is ok, it's already on daggers, and it helps EE.

Beside gear linked below you may opt to use Atziri's Step or Rainbowstride, Sharkonja's head and any good life + resist gear in any slot. Also, it's good to have chaos resist swap gear to use fighting monsters like map Weaver.

Additional info on spell block/dodge: Atziri's Step + Rare amulet vs Rainbowstride + Stone of Lazhwar. More numbers.

Cheap gear (1-3 chaos each item):

My gear (everything but diamond under 2 exalted):

With this armor I have 4.5k hp.

Start with whatever skill you like. Switch to Cast-on-Crit setup at level 31 or a bit later. Level fireball even if you don't use it. If you use searing bond for leveling 24-31, you might want to take elemental equilibrium early. STing 2-handers 1-20 and then Ungil's 20-31 works fine too.

At level 31 procs are rare, ST deals a big chunk of damage and shocks mobs. Later only spell damage matter.

Buy Tabula Rasa if you can afford it. GGGBB 5-link if not (buy item with these colors or that can easily be chromed: Eva/ES is the easiest, Eva slightly more difficult). Starting with 4L is possible too, but it will be weaker, and you shouldn't get EE keystone while using 4L. 5th and 6th links add a lot.

Use Doedre's Tenure. You can get perfect 4L for 1 chaos, and it's almost as good as Maligaro's, because cast speed doesn't affect our main skill.

Goldrim is a helm you may use until level 55 (Rat's Nest). The Three Dragons in between if you are not short of currency.

If procs are not reliable, get 4 power charges and maintain them with either PCoC on Tabula, Voll's protector or secondary 4L with PCoC. Consider getting Accuracy on rings and Weathered Hunter cluster in skill tree. If you don't mind respeccing you may temporarily take Nightstalker and 15% crit nodes.

You may use 15 implicit life on hit claw in one hand while leveling. Even 8 LoH helps sustain damage, greatly reducing danger, including lightning thorns and reflect.

After that, make your choice. Dervish drastically improves defense, Phase Acrobatics adds more, Ballistics allows to kill monsters from distance, Twin Terrors and Pressure Points improve offense and make procs more reliable. Read "Passive skills and bandits" section for more detail.

Elemental Equilibrium is very good for dps, so I put it to trees above, but it isn't a must, you may take other nodes first.

Dealing with Map mods
Elemental reflect. Change main skill to ST-LMP-CoC-EK-whatever (I used faster proj + inc crit dmg). If you are using fixed color GGGBBB 6L, ST-CoC-EK-ICS-ICD-PCoC or same thing with cyclone should do. Get 4L CoC or manually cast spell for phys reflect aura. Slower, but still doable. Reroll double reflect maps.

No regen / Half regen. Turn off Clarity and get surgeon's mana flask. Have to hit it regularly, but nothing difficult.

Blood magic. No auras. Dangerous, but not much of a problem if you can cap resists.

-Max resistances. Very dangerous. Real pain if you roll Archmages. Proceed more cautiously. Nothing more to say here.

Elemental weakness. Swap gear to overcap resists.

Humanoids. Dangerous because of Archmages with Lightning Thorns. Replace GMP with LMP. Get manually cast spell. Use spell block gear. Another option is to kill everyone before they can cast thorns.

DPS calculations
Excel dps calculator for this build. Not too user-friendly, but it calculates :)

Download to edit. It doesn't take EE into consideration.

Among other things it calculates two important values:

1. Chance for each attack to proc at least one spell. This is a measure of reliability.
2. Minimum dps assuming GMP ST hits only once and each GMP spell hits only once. Even single target dps is at least twice as high, but it's a good value to compare.

With some arbitrary assumptions my
- single-target ranged DPS is 8k,
- single-target shotgun DPS is 40k,
- pack DPS is 400k (disclaimer: arbitrary assumptions! :) )

Replacing Concentrated Effect with PCoC with 4 charges results in:
- Chance to cast increased by 24.7% (42.1% -> 52.5%),
- DPS decreased by 14.2%

How different stats increase DPS for my tree and gear without curse:

1% Spell/Elemental/Projectile Damage - 0.56% [burst damage only]
1% Attack Speed - 0.52% [good, but increases mana consumption]
1% Spell or Global Crit Multiplier - 0.26% [burst damage only]
1% Global Crit Chance - 0.20%
1% Accuracy - 0.17%
10 Accuracy - 0.16%
1% Attack Crit Chance - 0.12%
1% Spell Crit Chance - 0.08% [burst damage only]

Replacing my 45% Maligaro's with 50% Doedre's results in tiny 1.2% DPS reduction. 36% Maligaro's would lose. For Shadow start Maligaro's would still win.

This depends a lot. My Spell Damage is low, therefore adding some matters. Put your own stats in calculator if you want to know what to upgrade.

Shadow version
This build can be played as a shadow. Shadow deals more damage, but can face mana issues while leveling. To solve them you may temporarily take "mana gained on kill" passives near shadow start, use mana or hybrid flask and mana regen gear. Shadow's starting spell and elemental passives were buffed, making Shadow a very solid choice.

Final tree:


One of possible progressions (gif animation up to final build)

You may choose a different order which better suits your playstyle and gear.

Proof that you don't need hardcore tree to play hardcore.

hit level 90 in Invasion with this build.

Ranger and Duelist are possible too, their final trees are similar to Shadow's, difference is in 5 starting points. I can't give any advice how to level them, but if you got Standard level 80 with full respec, you can try this build.
Last edited by SunnyRay on August 19, 2014 9:05 AM
Already leveling up with this build and its really fun! :D
already tried this idea before, not worth it imo, cant compare with CoC discharge
Why not?

Discharge is powerful with 6L Voll's protector and Voll's Devotion.

Is it as good in new leagues where Voll's Devotion doesn't drop?

My passives are not meant for discharge, but it's still crit+ias+spell damage, and when I tried ST-GMP-PCoC-CoC-Discharge-ConcEffect in my Tabula it was very weak.

Also, I like sound, visual effects and overall feeling of my build more. This is something to compare too xD
I was using the same CoC build with barrage (wand and shield). I must say so far this build is superior.
Uptime is a lot higher even thou this crit chance is lower by 20%. Another thing is that with barrage character gets "stuck" for a whole duration of cast. Frame drops are also a lot lower. (or they optimized the game not sure).
So far my main issue is low HP pool. i am at 2k at lvl 71. I am still missing some health nodes so when i hit 80 should be a bit higher.
My gear is not the best atm but i can run low lvl maps with no problem.
Hey man, this looks like a nice spec. I wouldn't have thought of conc effect with fireball/arctic looks solid.

I'm curious how you make money with this build actually... Getting to 78 maps takes currency :D
Barrage is a whole different story. It scales better with Chain than GMP, don't benefit from dual-wield passives that are crucial for my spec etc.

Life rolls on boots, belt and jewelry are a must. Cap resists with Purity, then get as much life as you can. Stats like crit, spell damage and IIR are luxury. Also, 75% block is very effective, it's hard to get it with a wand.

reaperpi wrote:
I'm curious how you make money with this build actually... Getting to 78 maps takes currency :D

Dunno, may be I got lucky. I prefer a version about my perfect map management skills, though :) I wasn't spending too much, using my map advisor spreadsheet. I won't ever get all that Shavronne's and Kaom's with my 50 or so IIR, but getting to 78 maps is not too hard.

Being able to full-clear almost any map with any mods helps a lot. As a softcore player, I was killing every boss even if it meant a death or two. Also, I was selling maps I wasn't sure I can full-clear (Palaces) and low level maps. This plus forum shop with 1 chaos stuff and occasional exalted-worth drops was enough to roll maps and slowly upgrade gear. To clarify, I wasn't sustaining 78s, but going up and down between 73 and 78.
You didnt skill on any DMG Buffs. Seems like this is a very expensive/gear depended Build? Correct me if iam wrong please. Oh and is this Build Tanky enaugh? Seems pretty squishy.
Last edited by Raikudou on March 12, 2014 4:23 AM
To prove it doesn't require expensive gear I uploaded a video where I clear Shrine map using 1-3 chaos items. I used only 5 sockets in Tabula to represent that you can use the cheapest 5L.

I died once fighting Piety, what proves that you are not supposed to facetank lightning balls standing in lightning storm with this build and gear worth 10 chaos total. Also, I forgot Purity of Lightning. It's a ranged evasion crit build with 4k life (230%), max block and "immunity" to projectile attacks. It is not meant to facetank everything. Is it squishy? Depends on what you compare it with.
Last edited by SunnyRay on March 12, 2014 1:38 PM
So far I got up to 61 using your build and I must say it is amazing. I had no issues doing any quest or fighting any exile I have found. I am currently using Life gain on it as my 6 sockets on my CoC link.

Edit: With Life gain on hit Ele Reflect are not a treat. The real treat to this build is the new Corrupted blood mobs.
Last edited by MrLightning on March 12, 2014 3:27 PM

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