[2.4WIP] NeverSink's ♣ INDEPTH Tornado&Archer Guide ♣ Beginner friendly ♣ Rapid clear ♣ Uber Atzir



I'm going to update thios guide during 2.5 or 3.0, however as of now, while the guide is still viable, it's not up to date. ES builds are significantly stronger and there are other good bow guides right now.

- Reach of the council is still good, especially with poison, but not outragous as before.
- Slithertongue is OK, but we need to see the final numbers .

Meta went back to the one before the last patches: no frostwall abuse and reave is a bit weaker.
Strongest ascend. classes remain: assassin, raider, pathfinder, champion, deadeye.
Scion is still weak

Good TS links: TS-GMP-PPAD-SP-FA-Pierce (with drillneck) or the same, but replace GMP with poison with Reach.

Note: You can receive information about updates/progress on the guide, lootfilter, stream and videos/projects, by checking out my twitter or or ask me questions or watch me play this or other builds on my stream on my stream.

IMPORTANT: Questions: If you have questions, please ask them here in this thread. I frequently check this thread and there are several other experienced players to help you here! I'm NOT answering build-related questions ingame/PM's! I hope you understand.

IMPORTANT: Trading: Please don't sell and trade items here. Thank you.

Hi and welcome to my Path of Exile archer-ranger guide!
Before we start, let's get this out of the way:

Does this still work in 2.3

Short answer: More than before. Nothing was nerfed about it. +2 point buffs it, there were 0 skilltree changes that affect us AND voltaxic got nerfed, so in a sense Harbinger got buffed.

Long answer:

1) +2 ascendancy points
2) No direct nerfs
3) Endgame Lab enchants



Overall the build got buffed.

A little bit of background: This build was designed around 3 days before the release of the "Forsaken Masters" add-on. I've spent countless hours with a friend (C4pture), designing a wide diversity of builds with the new tree. We ended up seeing a lot of them executed by different people during the league.

This build however was definitely the very best we could come up with. It had everything: 165%++ life, 210%++ evasion, 410%+ high crit, flask nodes, movement-speed, etc, the numbers just seemed off the chart, compared to the other variations. After testing this build for a bit I decided to document it in the guide you see right now. This guide survived several patches.

The build and guide evolved with the game. New bow and support gems were added, new uniques, jewels, enemies, problems and options introduced. This build is now a solid veteran, trained, tested and adapted to help you brave the trials of Wraeclast, either you're a new player or an experienced path of exile gamer.

This build has one of the highest clear-speeds out there with the right gear. It's designed for new and experienced players both and aims to provide a smooth gearing/leveling experience. The level of gear you require to be efficient is very low, while the upper cap for top gear is incredibly high. There's always ways to get better, even if you're already super-strong :)


This build can be used with ANY of the following gems:
  • Tornado Shot
  • Split Arrow
  • Lightning Arrow
  • Ice Shot
  • Blast rain and rain of arrows (with a few more adaptations)



** coming soon **


LA/BR Atziri run - ~4 minutes duration, deathless, not entirely rushed, still picking up items etc.
LA/BR Gorge run - 3minutes


I livestream every monday, thursday and saturday at 20:00 GMT +1 and participate in all major PoE event. I'd be honored, if you'd come to join us :). I only play leagues and mostly hang around in Softcore (boo me). Also you'll have to endure my English! Every "The" will sound like a "Ze" (Ze Germans indeed).

My twitch channel is http://www.twitch.tv/neversink


  • Insane clear speed - high damage, moves fast, covers large area, crits like a boss!
  • Can use a lot of different skillgems/attacks and variations, several ascendancy options
  • Fun to play. This build is fast, aggressive and scales well.
  • Great build to start with as a new player or in new leagues!
  • Scaling tree. This build is not designed for a certain wealth level. You can start with it, if you're new and smoothly gear up towards the heavens.
  • Most best-in-slot unique items are very affordable. Rather easy to get decent gear!
  • Can clear Atziri and Uber-Atziri!
  • Several defensive mechanics.
  • Self-found gameplay possible, uniques are beneficial, but not build-defining.
  • Can still stack some rarity, great for new leagues.
  • Clears so fast, you don't even care about enfeeble half of the time!
  • No mana problems most of the time.
  • Can run elemental or physical reflect maps, by swapping gems out

  • Sometimes it's hard to upgrade single pieces of equipment, without getting uncapped resists.
  • Likely needs to pick up a few +INT or +STR notables from the tree.
  • Reflect can still hurt - but there are countermeasures
  • Evasion and dodge is not too effective against high physical spikes.

  • Uber-Atziri kill. ( Done at level 92 with 3 portals left ).
  • Hundreds of Atziri kills. Capable of reliably clearing apex. Capable of speed-runs.
  • Cleared all maps with pretty much any mods at very very fast speeds.
  • Cleared level 80+ maps
  • Cleared the vaal temple map.
  • Cleared every single unique map including poojoys, mao kun, death and taxes, lost trove olmecs etc
  • Reached 500+ forum pages. Thank you for your support guys :)




Path of Exile has one rule - prioritize defense. If the defensive mechanics of a build fail, the build is bad and you should feel bad. That's why this setup relies on several combined defensive mechanics to protect your skin.

Fortunately for us, a lot of the best defensive nodes of the game also neighbor strong critical strike chance/damage and bow nodes. This basically gave birth to the current build, that finds good balance between defense and offense, resulting in a truly deadly character.

This build is HC viable. However, the player has to invest a lot more into defense in HC and play consciously. This setup is not designed for braindead HC-farming (you should not do this anyway)

High evasion, dodge, 20-70%stronger flasks, 150-210%+ life, CWDT setup, freezing attacks

Long version:
We got 150-220% or more increased %max life. Resulting in 4500+ life. Using more defensive variations of this build (or higher levels) we can reach levels of life over 5500.
-Over 200% evasion rating from the tree. This doubles our already respectable projectile evasion chance, making us nearly immune to most ranged projectile attacks.
-All of our items are evasion-bases based, to synergize with that.
-40% dodge chance, 30-46% spell dodge chance, this is NOT evasion, this is ON TOP of the evasion
-We have 2 free items to run a CWDT/CWS (trigger gems: "cast when stunned/cast when damage taken)
-Hatred+Herald of Frost - YES this is defensive. With the high crit chance we're keeping everything in the state of eternal winter. The majority of mobs won't get into your proximity because of the high damage output and freeze chance
-We have 80% stronger flasks, combined with 45% faster recovery speed. Your life flasks can heal you over 5500 life or more if desired, providing a regeneration of 1200 or more life per second. This is HUGE
-We can refill our flasks on crit.
-We also leave barely any corpses. This should not be underestimated. This a strong mechanic that helps against avians, corpse explosion, necromancers etc.
-We knock waves of enemies back on crit, keeping things away from us at all times. It's fun to watch the last Atziri-trio boss not able to being able to get close to you.
-We are 1 node away from vaal pact, if desired
-The high evasion chance makes us nearly immune to damage reflection
-Devourers, Avians and tentacle-machinegunners are some of the smallest threats for this build (usually these guys tend to mess up your day)

350%+ crit mult, 55%+ crit chance, frenzy charges, large number of variations, 3 offensive auras/heralds. We shoot, things die. Ascendancy classes further boost every aspect.
Long version:

-Crit multipliers of 450% with the tree and gems alone.
-Can pick between multiple attacks!
-Consistent shocks that further increase our DPS.
-Decent attack speed boosts. 3 attacks/second with a random harbinger bow. We can get more.
-Critical strike chance of 55% and higher (it's possible to cap it at 95%). Can be increased to over 65% with the right bow and equipment, over 75% with power charges and capped with Assassin.
-Running heralds and hatred gives us insane clearspeed and helps clearing packs of mobs in split seconds.
-Lots of projectile, bow and physical damage increases.
-Can reach 50000 and higher Tornado shot GMP (shotguns!) DPS, clearing 78-79 mobs with one single crit. Endgame mirror equip level variations can have over 300000 GMP TS DPS
-Can run vaal haste and atziris promise flask to "streoid" itself to crazy DPS numbers numbers, killing anything in seconds.

Note: all these numbers are assuming very affordable gear. Nothing insane. Endgame damage numbers are much higher (I was running a 100k damage tornado shot in the talisman league, BEFORE the ascendancy classes were added)



115 points aggressive skilltree - 115 points aggressive skilltree - 165% life, 198% evasion, max frenzy charges, 365%+ increased damage, ~400% crit, 96% multiplier, 78% attack speed, life and mana leech. Also very high movementspeed.

Note: this is the aggressive, non-drillneck version and a excellent way to start the new "Awakening League" league. I'll post more variations during the next days/weeks. This is NOT a hardcore version, I'll post a different HC-tuned version soon enough. This version prioritizes fast leveling over survival and stacks a LOT more HP in the endgame.

If this appears to squishy to you or you want to play hardcore, use the defensive version instead!


This is a new skilltree, I've been playing around a lot during the Talisman league. I've found this skilltree to be very powerful. This tree is augmented with additional benefits for a already well-geared, high level archer. This is done by using vaal pact / arrow dodging and hybrid life/mana leech. While this skilltree has indeed slightly less health and damage than the defensive and regular skilltee, I've found it MUCH more enjoyable than the regular version.

NOTE: Do NOT level with this build, I suggest switching to it once you hit level 85+ and have troubles with reflect damage


207% Life, 70% stronger life flasks, 200% evasion, an extra jewel socket. This build is designed to help you in hardcore.


Note: Drillneck has become SIGNIFICANTLY stronger in the 2.2 version. With the introduction of the more damage multiplier on pierce, drillneck tornado shot builds should be able to outdamage pretty much any non-legacy quivers tornado shot builds.

Note: go for aspect of the eagle last. Grab vaal pact only once you need it.


PLEASE NOTE: If you need str/int, don't be shy to pick up a few +30 nodes around the tree, you can remove them once your endgame equipment is highly optimized.

Leveling Skilltree - 40 Points
This is how you start the game. This pathing picks up acrobatics, mana on hit/leech, life/flask nodes, movement speed and a lot and lot of damage to boost your early game and carry you through normal smoothly. The physical damage pathing next to aspect of the eagle and the pathing through the jewel nodes are intended. It's easier to regret out of those later.

Leveling Skilltree - 58 Points
Our damage should be fairly good at this point, so we bolster our backbone a bit, by pathing into the shadow tree and picking up life, life leech. We also grab more damage/attack speed. Note that we didn't touch crit at this point yet.

Leveling Skilltree - 77 Points
Now that we have some damage and life for the moment, we pick up all the crit nodes this build uses within the next levels.

Leveling Skilltree - 88 Points
We pick up 2 frenzy charges, phase acrobatics and thick skin to prepare ourself for endgame maping. Please read the frenzy charge section (at the end of this post) if you want to understand the reason behind it. Use bloodrage and/or frenzy to keep charges up. We also regret/respec 3 nodes (damage->critchance/ias around aspect of the eagle and the 1 dex node next to our jewel socket - the frenzy duration is better)

Leveling Skilltree - 106 Points
We now focus on the duelist part of the tree and the high quality nodes he provides. More speed, lot's of health, damage, a jewel socket, that tasty extra frenzy charge and attack speed. We also gain a considerable amount of evasion. At this point, all that's left is grabing a few life and life/evasion nodes around the tree to finish the default skilltree. If you manage to get beyond that (level 92+), grab the remaining crit nodes.

VISUAL SKILTREE (CLICK TO ENLARGE; thanks to Zuchor for the amazing work!)

Warning: visual skilltree not yet updated for 2.1



Q: Why is there no focus on power charges:
A: A power charge provides a 50% base crit chance increase. We need at least 3 nodes (including the charge itself) to pick up the charge itself. This results in the best case scenario of a ~16.6% crit chance/node, IF we actually have power charges. Not worth the massive investment

Q: Why are we running Assassins Mark then?
A: We still use crit a lot! Assassins Mark provides a nice critical strike chance bonus and an additional more damage multiplier on crit. In most maps Assassins Mark provides an insane survival boost

Q: Why Frenzy charges?
A: Frenzy provides 4% increased attack speed, 4% increased cast speed, 4% MORE damage. In case you didn't notice, MORE means it scales in a multiplicative fashion. 6 frenzy charges increased your total DPS by 24% WITHOUT calculating the extra 24% attack speed. It's downright insane.

Q: How can I get frenzy charges?
A: I recommend using bloodrage. The degen is really not too problematic.

Q: I need str/int
A: Get 1-2 of the +30 nodes. Regret them if your jewelry allows it later. There's no shame in keeping them though

Q: Can I use the pierce cluster for leveling?
A: By all means do it.

Q: Why not the whole the pierce cluster?
A: With a quality pierce chance (15/20 or more) and a drillneck, you reach 80-85% pierce chance. You would invest 5 points to get around 30% more projectile damage and 15% pierce chance, which is not efficient by any means. Also 85% pierce chance is pretty reliable, without the need for further increase

Q: Is drillneck much superior to a very good quiver?
A: Yes and no. Damage and defense-wise, drillneck can both be matched by a good rare quiver. However, It justifies the use of the pierce gem in end-game content, which works like a charm with Puncture and Tornado shot, increasing clearspeed dramatically. You can play without it too. There's a fancy picture later on in this guide explaining it a bit more.

Q: Why not ballistic mastery?
A: Not point efficient. Besides the clear speed of this build is so insane, you probably don't want it anyway.

Q: Why not master fletcher?
A: Master fletcher is not bad, but better options simply exist.

Q: Is this not... too much HP?
A: There is never too much HP.

Q: Can we skip sniper and save 2 nodes?
A: Yes, it's viable, but it's hard to find better options for 2 nodes that would be better than sniper with 3 nodes.

Q: Skip Quickstep?
A: You can do it, but I'm against it. Movement-speed is your best friend and you can't save too many nodes anyway.

Q: Can I keep mana leech nodes at higher levels?
A: Sure, if your jewellery is already really good and you see no other way to get mana-leech. Otheriwse, I highly advise to get your mana leech from somewhere else


Note that there is NO best class. Different classes are tuned for different tasks, playstyles and gear levels.

LowGear/SC/AnySkill - Pathfinder or Raider
AnyGear/SC/TS - Chain Deadeye
HighGear/SC/AnySkill - Pathfinder

AnyGear/HC/AnySkill - Champion
LowGear/HC/AnySkill - Chain Deadeye
AnyGear/HC/TS - Chain Deadeye + 1 Projectile
HighGear/HC/AnySkill - PathFinder or Raider

I can highly recommend starting with a Tornado-Shot Deadeye, if you're new to Archer gameplay. You can switch to something more progressive, if you want to later on. Do NOT use Deadeye for ok-high gear lightning arrow. Lightning arrow has enough damage and clear-speed as it is with the chain gem. Giving it extra chain or replacing the chain gem will not help you much. Your primary concerns are single target, speed, utility and survival, which Chain Deadeye doesn't provide.


Alternatively you can use an Assassin-Raider scion. This setup provides a high balance of Speed, Damage and utility. It can be used in all leagues and gear level. Not recommended for absolute beginners.


The onslaught raider is one of the fastest builds. It's deals formidable damage, has some defensive aspects and still grabs phasing. This is great for speedfarming maps with good gear


The Champion is an amazing hardcore class. This setup keeps your character alive, while also granting significant movementspeed and some damage.


The phasing ranger is a more refined and tanky ranger version. Great for staying alive for both HC/SC, while remaining very fast. Great for leveling in the 90-100 area.


The pathfinder is all about utility. If you don't need the defenses or offense of another class, by having GREAT gear already, I assume that the pathfinder will be the best choice.


I don't recommend the frenzy ranger. It's OK, if you intend to run +1 Darkray vectors and underwhelming otherwise


I don't recommend the assassin.




The general 4 link setups for the attack of your choice.


TS - Tornado Shot
LA - Lightning Arrow
IS - Ice Shot
SA - Split Arrow

GMP - Greater Multiple Projectiles
LMP - Lesser Multiple Projectiles
FA - Faster Attacks
PPAD - Physical Projectile Attack Damage
LL - Lifeleech
PTL - Physical to Lightning
AFD - Added fire damage
WED - Weapon elemental damage
ICSM - Increased critical strike multiplier
PCOC - Power charge on critical
COH - Curse on Hit
CWDT - Cast when damage taken
EC - Enduring cry
RC - Rallying cry
IC - Immortal call
ID - Increased duration
HOA - Herald of Ash
HOI - Herald of Ice
HOT - Herald of Thunder
AA - Arctic armor
BA - Blink Arrow
FP - Faster Projectiles
SP - Slower Projectiles


The modern exiled archer is a very adaptive beast. You can adjust your virtue gems and auras to run different attack variations with the same skilltree. In fact I HIGHLY recommend you to do so. This has the benefit of being able to run both physical and elemental reflect maps, by simply swapping some gems. I highly HIGHLY encourage you to do this.





AURAS/BUFFS - pick one combo!

REQUIRES: One or multiple of the following: Level 3/4 empowerer, conqueror's efficiency jewel, Charisma cluster, alpha's howl.
This setup features a lot of defense and damage at the same time. The grace+hatred combination keeps the enemies chilled and frozen and raises your evasion rating to very respectable levels. It can also be combined with queen of the forest for even higher levels of evasion. Good for hardcore.

Hatred+Acrtic armor
Another nice defensive/aggressive mix. Good in combination with tornado shot and a utility shot. Arctic armor helps you to survive some of the deadliest situations. Don't underestimate it. The chilling ground slows enemies, reducing their effective DPS, while the fire/phys damage reduction helps in the most dangerous situations - when you're stunned or for fighting reflect mobs. Good combo.

Hatred+Herald of Ash
Your super aggressive combo. It deals a lot of damage, keeps enemies frozen and it's fun to play. Not recommended on HC.

This is a great combination, if you're not running a utility shot setup and hate manually casting curses. However the damage from HOT is often not enough to cause shocks. In order to shock reliably I highly recommend combining this combination with PTL+WED in your main attack.

Note that you can run HOI+COH+AM too. It's better for AoE clearing, but is weaker against single target. However, as it requires significantly less INT to use, I can highly recommend doing it.

Generally speaking haste is great for low level map farming (<76). At some point we'll start stacking crazy damage numbers. Your damage will be so high that you no longer will need hatred to survive or kill enemies. Especially if combined with "shadows and dust", vaal haste and some magic find you will be clearing maps in a breeze, while running super fast. It's an exciting way to play and I can only recommend giving it a try.

DEFENSIVE/UTILITY use in remaining slots

DEFENSIVE/UTILITY - use in remaining slots

Assassins Mark:

This is hands down the best aggressive curse we can run. The MORE multiplier for critical strikes, the extra flat crit, the power charges, even the mana/life on kill are all super useful. Whether you cast it manually or use curse on hit HOL or use it in a utility shot - run it.

Blink Arrow:

This is another ability you just want to run. It increases your mobility, helps you to jump over gaps and some walls and helps kiting mobs. The clone doesn't do too much damage, but it sometimes distract enemies. You can link this to your utility shot if you have the sockets or just link it to FA/FP to increase the speed of this attack.

Ice Golem:

I like this fella. I really do. The accuracy and crit are two things we can really use well. Both of them amplify our damage by a decent amount. In addition he distracts your enemies by a little bit, which is a good thing. He tends to die a lot though. This can be fixed by running him in a cast-when-stunned or CWDT setup. You can also link him with blind or culling strike/rarity. It's surprisingly good.

Enduring Cry:

I'm not going to lie to you. Casting enduring cry manually is no fun. Still, I highly recommend doing so, especially in higher maps. Having those enduring charges ready will reduce physical damage spikes and improve CWDT-IC procs by a lot. If you find yourslef dying a lot and you're not using enduring cry and/or immortal call-cwdt... you probably should've done that.

Cast when damage taken:

This gem is one of the best defensive mechanics in the game. CWDT-Immortal call can and will save your sorry bottom so many times. It helps against reflect, it helps against damage spikes it helps once you get stunned. Simply put, it's absolutly mandatory. It also synergizes well with Daresso's chest.

Vaal haste/grace:

These two are great. Vaal haste is amazing. So good it's even worth running it with "Chill of Corruption". You run faster, you attack faster. Now grab yourself some shadows and dust gloves. Gotta go fast. Vaal grace on the other hand is a nice thing to use in sticky situations. Especially if combined with Hyrri's, darkray vectors or Atziri's step it can make you nearly untouchable.


It's handy and surprisingly comfortable if you enjoy magic finding in lower maps or run corrupted fragments a lot.

Good combinations:

CWDT+Ice Golem (if you have the STR to level CWDT)
Lvl1 CWDT+IC+ID (highly recommended with Daresso's chest

CWDT+Ice Wall
CWDT+MoltenShell (not too strong, but if you got the colors/slots, why not?).
CWDT+Lightning Ball+GMP+Blind+Knockback (I saw this once on another player and it was surprisingly effective)

FRENZY CHARGES - indepth section
Frenzy charges and why they are so good

Frenzy charges were decent in 1.3. Each frenzy charge granted 4% attack and cast speed. Nice. However, in 2.0 frenzy charges truly cause us to err frenzy. Each charge also grants 4% MORE damage. Now we're not talking about "increased damage". We're talking about MORE damage. It takes your total damage and then multiplies it times 1+(0.04*Frenzy). In other words 5 frenzy charges increase our DPS by 20% WITHOUT counting the attack speed. This makes the gems that grant and synergize with frenzy truly truly outragous. Luckilly our skilltree is also optimized to grants all charges available. This results in up 7 frenzy charges (or even 10 if you're willing to go for darkray vectors and the right corruptions).

That's an DPS increase of up to 28-40%, without the 28-40% faster attacks we also get from them. The cast speed is also nice if you cast your curses manually by the way.

It gets better. We also get 4% evasion per frenzy charge and can combine them with blooddance or darkray vectors for even more great bonuses.

So how do we get the power charges you might ask?

Well there are 3 reliable ways to do that. Frenzy (the gem), blood rage and blood dance (boots).

We can totally sustain the blood rage degen. It hurts a bit and decreases the survival by a tiny bit, but the huge damage and life leech boost is totally worth it.

Sustaining frenzy charges with the frenzy attack is somewhat annoying, yet it's a great attack on it's own and deals surprising ammounts damage if you have 7+ frenzy charges. I actually prefer it over puncture for all setups, except tornado shot (due to the high base damage and the knockback, puncture makes for a better secondary attack there).

The blood dance boots are a great pair of unique boots. They have the drawback of not providing any life or elemental resistances and they reduce the attack/cast speed provided by frenzy chargees. However, they allow us to generate frenzy charges without blood rage and provide a lot of life regeneration effectivly creating an additional defense layer. If you have a defensive setup with 5000 HP you can get up to 450HP regen per second. Sounds good, no?

Finally there are darkray vectors. These boots don't actually provide any charges, in fact they make the charges last less time. Yet with hyrri's or daressos the player can reach up to 75% dodge on top of their evasion with these pair of sneakers. This is rather impressive and might be actually a great setup on hardcore if you can survival the 1 incoming hit that will still you hit once in a hour. Also they make you superfast if you manage to get 10 frenzy charges.

Overall, I highly recommend using frenzy charges. They are a great way to boost damage and who doesn't like green orbs floating around you. Tempest keep was merely a setback.
Last edited by NeverSink on Dec 2, 2016 1:36:17 PM
Last bumped on Feb 15, 2017 12:22:46 PM

This chapter is dedicated towards gearing, crafting and buying the right combination of items!

  • GET MORE LIFE - Try to get life in every item slot (except for your bow). Replacing some items with uniques without life is OK, but you need to compensate the HP. A dead ranger doesn't do much damage.
  • CAP RESISTANCES - 75% fire/cold/lightning resistance are your goal. You don't have to hit it instantly, but if you're dying in curel/merciless and have negative resistances, you know what you got to do.
  • PRIORITIZE EVASION BASES - That evasion can and will save your life. When upgrading your equipment try to use as many evasion bases as possible
  • DON'T NEGELCT YOUR ATTIRBUTES - Depending on your setup, you'll want up to 155 strength and up to 155 intelligence. You can save valuable nodes by optimizing your equipment
  • DON'T GO OVERBOARD ON UNIQUES - Unique items often provide great advantages. Yet they come at a great cost: most of them lack defensive mechanics. Using too many of them WILL often get you killed.


These are NOT item requirements! This is just an example how your level 90+++ items might look like.

This equipment was gathered within 15 days of gameplay during the talisman league.
I crafted the bow myself.


Another old equipment set:

Single equipment piece options:

I HIGHLY recommend reading at the very least the bow section.



The very best option here is a rare insane 200%+ +3x-6x damage etc etc harbinger bow. However, not all of us have mirrors and stacks of exalts lying around. Also such bows simply don't exist in new leagues. So here are your good options:


You should look for the following bonuses:
1) Physical DPS - A viable harbinger has 200-300+ physical DPS. Anything over 300 is very strong and over 350 insane. A decimation bow will also do at the start of the league by the way.
2) Critical strike chance on the harbinger. It's a multiplicative modifier and will skyrocket your DPS
3) Attack speed (after a lot of tests, I find it better than CSM for all purposes except Atziri maybe)
4) Critical strike multiplier
5) Projectile speed, resistances, leech and high ele damage are decently helpful, but should be never prioritized above the bonuses above

So how does one get such a harbinger bow?

1) (unlikely) find one.
2) (likely) buy one from someone else (use this link to find all online players who sell harbinger bows with 250 PDPS or more: http://poe.xyz.is/search/inamasihikisot )
3) (likely) Craft one yourself


A high damage infractem is a good way to start maping and run most maps. 100% pierce chance is insane, synergizes with drillneck quite well and saves you a gem slot in both Tornado Shot and Puncture. The movement speed is welcome and the crit is decent. However, the inability to leech is a bit hard to compensate. There is however one way to do it.

The ring Thief's Torment. While it provides another disadvantage, the Life and mana on hit is INSANE, the resistance bonuses very high and the quantity very welcome. I do not recommend running infractem without the ring in maps!


This bow has one big disadvantage: you will lose your evasion against reflect mobs. Be careful when fighting reflect packs and don't run reflect maps with it.

Other than that this thing is insane. It has a crazy high attack speed, deals very serious damage and NEVER MISSES. The problem with accuracy is that your accuracy is a direct decrease to your crit chance.

Lets assume you have a critical strike rating of 55% with a harbinger bow and a accuracy of 85% (very realistic). That means 85% of your attacks will HIT, and only 55% of THOSE will crit. This results in 46.75% of EFFECTIVE critical strike rate.

Now lets take the same example with a Glare. You will have a critical strike chance of 35%. But you will hit all the time. That means you have a 35% crit rate. Not too high I know. But then consider the 1.2-1.3 attack speed of a harbinger against a 1.65-1.8 attack speed of a Glare.

If you actually calculate the DPS, the Glare will be much stronger, unless you have a VERY strong harbinger bow. In addition the glare provides you with 80-100 mana, which helps in noticable ways.

still don't get me wrong, a endgame harbinger bow outshines the Glare and should be your goal. However, it's still a nice stepping stone.

The same logic applies to high damage thicket bows by the way. A strong thicket can be much more effective and cheap solution than a harbinger.


Please note, that crafting depends on your luck. Be prepared to invest and lose quite a bit of currency. If you're aiming on high 350+ DPS results you might need THOUSANDS of alteration orbs and a lot of luck.

First of all, you want to find or buy a base. The means a white/magic/rare harbinger bow. You want as high item level as possible. You can also buy a high level harbinger from another player.

Harbingers start dropping somewhere in merciless act 3. You can also use a decimation bow for early crafting in a new league, which are weaker, but much easier to find.

To find out the itemlevel of a item, hold the item and enter " /itemlevel " into the chat. The highest base that is of interest for us is level 77. Higher bows don't get any new mods.

Levels of interest are:
1) iLvl: 60: 130 to 149 (Cruel) - Local Physical Dmg +%
2) iLvl: 65: 24 to 33 / 49 to 57 (Tempered) - Local Min/max added physical damage
3) iLvl: 73: 150 to 169 (Tyrannical) - Local Physical Dmg +%
3) ilvl: 73: 75 to 80 / 100 to 135 (Emperor's) - Local Physical Dmg +% / Local Accuracy Rating
4) iLvl: 77: 29 to 38 / 58 to 68 (Flaring) - Local Min/max added physical damage
5) iLvl: 83: 170-180 (Merciless) - Local Min/max added physical damage
5) iLvl: 83: 170-180 (Dictators) - Highest Damage/Accuracy mod ingame

The most important level is 73. In addition to the mods listed above it also adds the top crit chance and crit damage rolls. And even with flaring being an insane mod, you can attempt to craft some quite good items using ilvl73+ harbingers. If you're just looking for a small temporary solution and don't want to invest too much currency at the beginning of the league you can stop at 73. Obviously if you can get your hands on a 77 or a 83 bow, it's much much better.

(Check http://www.poemods.com/index.php?item_type=bow for more information).

You should also watch out for the internal critical strike affix on the harbinger bow. It can go from 30% to 50%. You can reroll the affix with a blessed orb. The orb is very affordable and should not create big complications. So this should not be your primary criteria, when shopping for bows.

Once you have such a bow. You should transmute it (if it's not magic already) with:

then start applying:

The goal is to get a harbinger bow with one of the mods listed above and a second decent mod (crit chance/attack speed/crit damage). The exception is "tyrannical" and "merciless", if you get this mod simply proceed crafting, no matter what suffix you get with the augmentation orb.

Once you have two good mods, apply a regal orb.

With a bit of luck you'll get a third good mod (Crit, Crit chance, Hybrid PhysDamage/Accuracy, high accuracy, attack speed). If it's the start of the leauge, you might also be happy with anything, since the crafted result later amplified by a tora-craft will still be decent.

However, if you're trying to create an upgrade and are not happy with the regal result:

...and start over.

Even if the mod is bad (especially in the beginning of the league) you can then bring the bow to "Tora - Master of the Hunt" and apply the "other" physical mod. Here's a screenshot of some of the things a (already level 5) tora can do:


Alternatively if you have a good 3 stat rare bow, you can ask a playing with a level 8 Elreon to add the "can receive multiple master craft bonuses" on it and then add 2 bonuses on it (usually crit chance and damage. Note that this is expensive and should be done with very good results only.

Also: if you get a single stat blue item after alterating with either Flaring/Tyrranical, you can attempt regaling it. If you get the other one (so you have Flaring+Tyrranical), congratulations, you managed to create the holy grail of crafting in new leagues. Ask a trustworthy player with level 8 elreon+tora to add Crit chance/damage (or attack speed/returning arrows) + WED (now that Hybrid damage/ac is gone) and you have a godlike bow that can reach 400-500 DPS.

Finally improve the number of sockets, links and quality with jewelers, fusings and blacksmith's, adapt the colors and enjoy your new killing machine. If you want to try your luck you can also try improving the bow using the following orbs:

The whole process can be frustrating, but if you're smart and a lil' bit lucky, you can also make quite a profit by selling these bows (made around 15 exalts this way).

Also don't get your hopes up TOO much. Sometimes you get lucky and hit a lucky regal on the first try and get some insane bow. However, if you PLAN on creating a 350+ DPS harbinger with crit chance, expect spending 5000+ or more alteration orbs. This is a long and painful process.

There are also some advanced crafting techniques you can use with other level 8 masters. Be smart and don't be afraid to experiment, within reason of course.


You can use these unique bows until you get a good rare bow! Lionseye's Glare can be used in endgame mapping and be very effective!



Once you hit a higher level you want a

Evasion, attack speed, rarity, movement speed. Everything about this thing SCREAMS: awesome. However, if you want to run Alphas howl+Grace+Queen of the forest, you want well.. alphas howl, which is not a bad option and provides the "cannot be frozen" bonus.


Now ideally you want a crafted 6L, tripple resist, high evasion Zodiac leather, with high life

But honestly, I bought a

for 2 chaos at day two and didnt switch it until 2 weeks in the league.

Alternatively you can use belly of the beast, which is very strong and affordable. The life, resist and flask bonuses on it are just awesome.

Finally there are the more complicated options: Lightning coil OR Queen of the forest. The first one is a good HC option or if you're overcapped on lightning resist for some reason and the second one works pretty well, if you're running grace.

A very solid option is daresso's, it improves your leech, survival against reflect and adds some very nice fancy bonuses to your kit. However, I don't recommend it as a first choice, it's more of an expensive upgrade/alternative already very equipped players, who have great jewelry


You likely want to run some evasion or evasion/armor rare boots with. Armor/evasion hybrid boots have the advantage of receiving the 4x-red coloration very easily, allowing you to run a full CWDT setup. If you can get 4x red from somewhere else, go for pure evasion.

Priority stats:

+2-3 Resists
+More evasion or rarity


Note that you can craft some of the mods with Tora and Haku. Try to search for boots that cover the specific resists you need.


If you can get the resistances from the rest of your equipment, then Atziris step is the ultimate boots upgrade for you (also they are very affordable). High evasion + decent life + 14-16% to DODGE SPELLS is just insane. Also they provide 30% faster movement-speed which is awesome

There's also 2 other options: Blood dance and Darkray vectors. Those boots are very aggressive versions, but are definitely worth giving them a try.

You can try corrupting them for +1 frenzy charge.

With corruption effects you can get up to 20% extra DODGE from vectors and 9% regeneration from blood dance. Obviously you want to run blood rage with vectors and possibly even with blood dance. The frenzy attack is a very solid choice too.

They can also get some neat corruption effects, but you should be careful with those.


The gloves are one of your damage-boosting items. There 3 very good options here that come to mind.

Maligaro's viruosity is a great item that provides attack speed, crit chance and crit multipplier, boosting your damage quite a bit

These gloves don't quite the provide the damage from maligaro's, however the mana leech and the proc effect on the rampage STAGES (25 kills, 50 kills....) are insane. The smoke cloud helps avoiding attacks, while the "unholy might" buff adds 30% of your total physical damage as chaos damage for 3 seconds and is a very very serious damage boost. These gloves especially work well. if you have a very fast high DPS character.

Atziri's acuity is the absolute best-in-slot, since it provides instant life leech on crit and some other useful bonuses. However, it's extremely valuable and non-available in new leagues. So it's not really an option most of the time (NOTE: With 2,0 vaal pact seems to be just as good).

Early in the league you should focus on getting. Life/Resists from your gloves. Attack speed, leech or phys damage rare gloves can be quite insane too by the way.

Maligaros became pretty expensive after 2.0. I recommend getting a nice rare first before switching to those.

Also there's another nice option now! SNAKEBITE. Between you and me these gloves are very awesome and very underrated. With the new frenzy charge meta you can get quite a lot of DPS out of them, while also getting life. The poison effect is a nice cherry on top, especially since it was buffed in 2.1. I'm actually considering making a build around those gloves.


There are several good options here.

1) We can use a good rare belt. Stats to look out for are life, physical damage, strength, resists. Weapon elemental damage is no priority, but can also help. Armor is getting cut in half by acrobatics, so don't prioritize it either. Ultimately it's the best option, but it's hard to find a REALLY good belt. Weapon elemental damage also helps.

2) Meginord's. It's still a good option that provides a lot of life, strength, damage and cold resist

3) Doryani's. This option gives a lot of damage and some resistances. Sadly it barely provides health (except for the +strength)

4) The Retch. This is a new one and I'm in love with it. You create this belt by vendoring the 2 new (2.1) uniques Faminebind+Feastbind to the vendor. Not only does it provide some decent damage, life, leech and a bit of cold resistance, it also comes with 3 strong unique mods.

The 60% increased flask duration is great. This causes quality quicksilver/jade flasks to last up to 10 seconds. This is insane and highly useful. Especially if combined with...

The 15% movementspeed during flask effects basically gives you a permanent 15% movement speed out of town. You'll be constantly running around at high speed, which helps this build in a lot of ways (at the very least it's awesome)

I'm not 100% sure yet how the lifeleech->damage bonus works. It's either dealing damage around you in AOE or increasing your attack damage. I'm honestly not sure. I'll update it, once I'm confident enough about it.

The disadvantage is the 30% slower flask recharge rate. This is actually quite fine and barely noticable.

Overall I highly recommend giving it a try... unless you got:

5) Headhunter. The only belt I would use above any of the other options above. This is your ultimate endgame upgrade. The holy grail of belts. It has very solid stats and the insane ability to steal mods. Considering how fast this build can move and kill, you'll constantly have several rare mods up, that will give you auras, damage, crit, speed, nemesis mods and a lot of insane stuff. At times it will increase your total DPS by multiple time, double your movementspeed, give you 95% critchance or provide proximity shields. If this might not be the strongest belt for some situations (uber-atziri), it's definitely one of the most fun and awesome items in the game. This belt is pretty much the only reason, why I sometimes play standard - because it's so fun to play with.


Now we have 2 options here:

A drillneck and a rare quiver.

A rare quiver can provide Crit chance and damage, flat damage, attack speed, resists, life and leech and is a overall very strong choice.

UPDATE: In 2.2 drillneck has become significantly stronger with the introduction of the more multiplier on a pierce gem. It also became cheaper, thanks to Cadiro. I can highly recommend giving TS+Drillneck a try. It's an awesome option now.

I've been already talking a lot about drillneck in this guide. I can highly recommend giving it a try, especially if you can get your hand son a high quality pierce gem. Also we need to get the resists from somewhere else and the HP the quiver provides is "OK" at most

Also the damage boost from drillneck is not exactly INSANE. Once i equipped it, my DPS jumped up to 17000 from 15000, but I lost 2/2% leech, triple resist, crit and a lot of life. However, what really justifies it's usage is that it turns the utility gem pierce into a damage gem. The decision is yours in the end. If you can cap your resists without a rare quiver, give it a try.

(I sadly can't link my drillneck since I vaaled it on the standard league and it turned yellow. My apologies.)




You basically want to fill in whatever is missing here. But here are the priorities:

1) Missing Resists
2) Life (60+)
3) Increased Critical Multiplier (25+), Flat Physical Damage (if high)
4) Int, Strength (can help you regret stat points in tree)
5) Accuracy (200+), Critical Strike Chance (25+), Weapon Elemental Damage (20+), Leech, Rarity
6) Rest

There are some good unique options too:

Example of good rare items:

If you're playing on standard, you can also give "The Taming" a try, especially if you want to use a windripper variation.

Optionally you can also go for some magic find variations:


Now before we talk about jewels I'd like to tell something I call the "golden jewel rule". It goes like that:

If you can take a jewel node and need to invest 2 or less points to get it (including the socket itself), always get it! If you need to invest 3+ nodes only get it if you're super rich and 90+.

Jewels can provide insane benefits. For just a few passive skill points you can get more value stats than you'd get from most node combinations in the tree. Another huge upside is the fact that you can get the stats in any part of the tree. So if you're playing a character that has hard access to life nodes you can compensate it with jewels.

The best jewels you can use are rare. There are several stats we're looking for in jewels:

Tier0: (~worth 1.2 nodes): Attack Speed with Bows (6-8%), Increased Maximum Life (5-7%)
Tier1: (~worth 1 nodes):PhysDamage (14-16%), PhysDamage with Bows (14-16%), Hybrid Crit/Accuracy (6-10% each), Life Leech
Tier2: (~worth 0.7 nodes) AttackSpeed (3-5%), Evasion (14-18%), Crit Chance (8-12%), Crit Multiplier (6-8%), Mana on Hit, Projectile Damage (10-12%)
Tier3: (~worth 0.5 nodes) Resistances, Attributes, Accuracy, Attack/Cast Speed, Mana Leech, %Damage (8-10%), %Lightning Damage
Tier4: Rest

Note that the node cost of attributes is highly dependent on what you need. If 10% cold resistance allows you to cap your resistances, it's worth significantly more. Yet, you can more or less evaluate how good your jewel is this way.

Here are some examples:

This is a typical "goodbuild" jewel. It offers 2 T0 stats, 1 T3 stat and 1 T4 stat. The rolls are rather high. It's worth ~3.5 nodes and is absolutly worth the investment.

I'm also using this jewel. It gives me the exact amount of str/int I need to run my gems, while boosting my PTL/LA damage and giving health. Nice. I got this one for 2 chaos

There are also a few unique jewels that are worth running. Currently the "Lionseye" jewel is NOT one of them. I personally like "inspired learning" most. In order to run it you need to pick up acuity or survivalist though. This is a big investment. However, having a mini-headhunter is fun and adds flavor to the gameplay. I can't 100% recommend it, but I want to encourage you to experiment with your equip


  • NORMAL: Help Oak
  • CRUEL: Help Kraitlyn
  • MERCILESS: Help Kraitlyn


Here are some hints on how to make leveling easier:

1) DAMAGE - with the introduction of 2.1 this build has become even more enjoyable to level. Stronger early game bows, Roth's Recurve and Night's hold talsiamsn are amazing tools that can deploy a lot of damage and speed on the board. In new leagues you usually don't have access to those, which is totally fine. This build has a fairly fast clearspeed and deals sufficient single target and AOE damage to provide a smooth leveling experience.
2) MANA - once you get your hands on the spirit void cluster, mana shouldn't be a big deal anymore. With it you should be able to lose those annoying mana flasks soon enough :). Until then you can run a single mana flask.
3) LEVELING UNIQUES - You don't need any uniques to level. In fact you can play completely selffound. However, if you want some stuff for your bow-guy, I can recommend the following options:
-Weapon: Stormcloud -> Roth's Recurve -> Death Harp -> Infractem+Thief's Torment -> Lionseye Glare
-Amulet: Night's Hold (use splitarrow/totems or anything you like inside)
-Armor: Tabula Rasa
-Belt: Wurm's, Meginord's
-Gloves: Slitherpinch
4) MASTERS Priorities - Tora->Elreon/Haku->Zana->Vorici->Rest
5) PRIORITIZE DEFENSE - Especially once you reach merciless you want those resists and life. The "6-10" physical damage ring, won't save you from merveils frozen assault.
6) FLASKS - Optimize your flasks frequently. Always look for new flasks. Transmute them when needed.
7) RECIPES - Using the rustic sash recipe to create good physical bows is a good idea, while leveling.
Especially once you start encountering decimation bows.
8) CHROMATICS - Sell all Red-green-blue+ linked items. You'll want those chromatics later on
9) ALTERATIONS - Save your alteration orbs. You'll need them to craft a decent bow at some point.
10) DECENT HUMAN BEING - Help other players, you were also a new player at some point. Don't be a dick. Thank you.
11) FILTERS - Use a lootfilter (shameful self-promotion right there)


Choosing the right flasks is a life or death question in path of exile.

Here are your priorities for flask choices:

1) We want 2 life flasks in the endgame, an faster recovery anti-bleed flask and a instant/half-instant anti-freeze flask.
2) We want a quicksilver flask with bonus movementspeed. Please note that the flask you get as a reward for the act 1 normal tidal island quest can NOT roll movementspeed, because it's itemlevel is too low. Ideally you want to combine it with faster charge recovery or charge gain on crit (surgeon's mod)

NOTE: Silver flasks provide a new alterantive. You should definitely give them a try. If your ascendancy class is a onslaught or phasing raider you should use them over quicksilver flasks!

3) We want to run Atziri's flask. The Chaos damage, leech and resistances are all very welcome additions. With the introduction of 2.2 a diamond flask is also an amazing choice. Especially if your crit chance is not <70 (with powercharges) yet, a diamond flask provides an unmatched damage boost.

4) We want to run a jade flask with even more evasion and charge recovery/on crit recovery.

NOTE: Stibnite flasks work just as well. In fact if the evasion from your items is quite high, I recommend it over the jade flask!

5) We can replace the jade flask with a taste of hate in the lategame. It provides a "second temporary hatred", a lot of damage reduction and synergizes well with atziri's flask.
6) We want 20% quality on all flasks. No exceptions. This is very important.
7) Vinktar's elixier is a powerful option as well.

My setup:

Swap flasks for Uber-Atziri and different speed runs:


These gems benefit a lot from gem level and we'll be happy to have them leveled once we'll need them

1x GMP
1x Faster Attacks
1x Slower Projectiles
1x Phys To Light
1x Weapon Ele Damage



This build can honestly run anything. Including no regen, enfeeble, physical reflect, blood magic (just turn off Hatred of Frost and Hatred), chains and anything else. The only thing this build can't run is the "cannot leech" mod. Luckily this mod doesn't happen very frquently and can only occur on tier 12++ maps.

However, some things are just fairly risky:

1) Reflect once you hit over 15000 tornado shot DPS. You can run it on the augmented version. Worst case scenario replace your weapon elemental damage with life leech.

2) Temporal chains. You can do it, but you don't want to.

3) 60% reduced mana regen + enfeeble. You can run it, but it'll make sustaining mana pretty hard.


0) Use the augmented skilltree found in the first post! This build can even run reflect maps and can handle reflect really well.
1) Have a pool of 4000+ HP to soak through the damage
2) Have a instant-flask ready and use jade flasks to improve your chances
3) Use atziri's promise to take mobs down faster and leech yourself back
4) Use a 1-2 CWDT clusters with Enduring Cry/Immortal call/Increased duration. Run two clusters if needed. Also keep firing if your CWDT setup lasts long enough.
5) Have at least 45% evasion, ondals guide, acrobatics and phase acrobatics
6) Don't use lionseye with reflect maps
7) Don't try to bring your accuracy into insane levels. You want 1500-2000 accuracy. Not less, but not more either.

Don't attempt to run Atziri under level 85, if you never tried her before.
You can try running atziri at level 75-80, if your equipment is OK and you have experience with taking her down before.

You want at least:
4000+ life (4500 allows you to survive all Atziri's small flameblasts at 75% resists)
40%++ evasion (helps with dodging spears and trio fight)
10000+ tornado shot DPS
Puncture - don't attempt tornado shotting atziri in her clone phase. You might get yourself killed. Also it helps IMMENSELY versus the trio. Frenzy or puncture traps work too.

For 2x Vaal: 3 life flasks, 1 topaz flask (with removes shock), 1 quicksilver.
For trio: 3 life flasks (with removes bleeding), 1 jade flask, 1 quicksilver.
For Atziri: 2 life flasks, 1 ruby flasks, 1 topaz flasks, 1 quicksilver.

If you have a lot of life (5000+) you only run life flasks or use another setup.
Use Atziri's promise if you're confident about your survival and skill instead of 1 life flask

General tips:
For the double vaal: Pop 1 vaal, wait 7 seconds, pop another vaal. Once first vaal is up, activate all available steroids, curse him, and tornado shot him, then run to the second vaal and repeat. Afterwards slowly drain their health. Keep moving, if they're using their laser attack. Avoid lightning balls at all cost. Kill adds to refill flasks. Try to kill them at the same time. Don't let a vaal enrage with 50% HP.

For the trio: Enter room, curse the tentacle misscreation boss in the middle of the room, then puncture her. Run away from the melee bosses in a circle, keep puncturing the ranged chick if you have a moment. Try to kill her in the middle. Afterwards focus on the dualstriker. Kill minions, avoid any AoE. Use jade flask if things get risky. After his death kite the last guy with puncture. Kill minions with tornado shot or they'll overwhelm you (+you need the charges). Very easy fight, once you figure it out.

Atziri: Hardest fight, if you're not used to her. General rule: avoid everything. Try to figure out her rhythm, "evade spell"-"attack"-"move", are the dance moves for you. Try to move before she casts her next attack to avoid it for sure. The "clone" phase is significantly harder, but the same rule applies. "evade spells", once you're safe "attack with puncture", then keep running. Find out where the mirror-atziri is, be careful to NOT attack her. Also use angles where you wont accidently pierce-hit her if you're using drillneck. Good luck.

Pretty much the same rules apply for uber-atziri, with some modifications:
1) 4500+ HP to reliably survive spears.
2) 15000+ DPS recommended, especially if you're new to uber-atziri
3) 45%+ Evasion
4) A lot of experience with running normal Atziri.
5) Good ping
6) Get some peace and quite. It's a game, but you've invested a lot of time and game-currency to get this far. Be alone, turn of phones, go DND, don't stream unless you're 100% confident of yourself and your connection

1) Double vaal - 2 life flasks with anti-freeze. 2 topaz flasks, at least 1 with surgeons, 1 quicksilver flask. Avoid those freaking lightning balls, they hit like a truck. You can use smoke mine to get out of them. Keep moving during the rays and run out of ice rain. There is no huge trick here, just keep your distance and avoid the lightning balls. Very hard fight and somewhat chaotic and uncontrollable.

2) Trio - Same rules, same flasks. Just keep moving and avoiding any bleed/chaos aoe. Fairly easy fight for this build.

3) Atziri - Move, move, move. Forgot those light/fire resist flasks. If you want a extra chance, use Rumi's. Avoid every and any flameblast, storm call etc. Everything WILL kill you. Spears deal around 3500-4000 damage, instantly heal yourself or you'll risk dying to another one or some bleeding.

Good luck


I might move this into the equipment section a bit later, but the first post reached it's maximum size, so let's just keep it here for now... (also I need more fancy pictures

I often hear the question "look at all my equipment and passives and tell me what to upgrade". Now here's the answer: I can't tell you that. You need to drive a car to get a feeling for.

But, there are some good news too. There are some rules and guidelines that might help you with that

1) Prioritize defense. You want at least 3500++ HP and capped resistances by level 70-80. Upgrades to get to that point are cheap. Use Poe.Xyz and get there.
2) Don't be afraid to use a +30 str/+30 int stat points from the skilltree. It's better than trying to get a perfect piece of jewelry
3) General rule: more unique = better rares. Maligaros/S&D + RatsNest + AtziriStep + Drillneck + your bow provide 0 resists. So don't attempt to get there until your rares are good enough to allow you to do it. You likely want to upgrade 2-3 items at a time. "I'm going to replace my belt and left ring, to switch my boots to atziri's step".
4) The only reason to use drillneck before having a 6 (or at least 5-link) is Infractem+Thiefs torment. Drillneck can provide a huge DPS boost, but it takes a pierce gem link to do so otherwise and there are equally good options for the first 4-5 links.
5) Lionseye and Infractem/Thiefs/Drillneck trio are good options but not "final" upgrades. I can't tell you what's better.
6) Never, never, never forget about upgrading your flasks. By level 80-85 you want each single flask handcrafted with the perfect suffix/affix. By 90 you want all of them (including atziri's promise!) with 20% quality. These upgrades are much cheaper than anything else and provide insane boosts.
7) When picking between two "luxury" upgrades, try picking the more permanent one. If you can pick between a insane ring, that would easily help you cap all your resists and allow you to use a drillneck later and a bow with 15% more DPS, go for the ring. You'll want to replace the bow again anyway later for something even better.
8) Get a 5-Link armor and a 4-link bow first. That's more links than enough until you can afford a 6link AND a drillneck at once, while keeping all your resists capped.
9) Level gems in your offslot!
10) If picking between 2 bows with the same DPS, prioritize the slower one (lionseye is a bit of a special case)
11) If picking between crit chance and attackspeed with a otherwise equal bow. Go for crit chance.
12) You can regret some mana leech nodes if you get some mana leech on your gear.
13) Focus on "weakest links upgrades". A wise strategy is to always upgrade your worst item to the best item you can find. You don't want too many "small upgrades".
14) It takes 534 chromatics to create a 4-red maligaros ( on average! ). If you get a 3-red stop until you can afford safely proceeding with this madness.
15) Don't vaal things for no good reason! Don't vaal your equipment! Never vaal harbingers! Only vaal boots/gloves/helmets you're going to use if you got replacements! Get a item to 20% quality+right links and colors before vaaling!
16) Think of crafting as of vaaling (I mean complete white->rare crafting, with mass alterations). Unless you are ready to take the risk of losing mass currency, don't do it. I've spent over 7500 alterations + mass regals, without getting a upgrade.
17) Create yourself a fancy hideout and level your masters.
18) Weapon elemental damage and Physical to Lightning is a deadly combination!
19) Try to get 300-500 accuracy from gear.
20) When searching for upgrades, consider what your masters can do for you and craft the missing stat.
21) If you're new to crafting and you're asking yourself "should I buy or craft gear". Usually you're better of buying the gear.
22) You can attempt crafting your own chest piece if you find a 6-socketed high level evasion armor. It might be much more cheaper than buying one.
23) Acuity are hands down the best gloves for this build. Also the most expensive item. Don't try saving for one until you have everything else. (I can't believe I need to say this)
24) 6-Linking yourself is a very very frustrating process. One can sometimes be lucky, but most of the time you will be really disappointed. Unless you know what you're getting into, I highly suggest buying or mastercrafting a 6-link.
25) Added fire damage is pretty much always a worse choice than pierce+drillneck on tornado shot. As for puncture: just don't do it.
26) You can also use split arrow or ice arrow instead of tornado shot with this build (with some chances). You can also replace puncture with a utility shot (split arrow/frenzy+cast on crit+assassins mark... lot's of options here).
27) If you're playing on standard there are some extra gearing options, such as "The Taming" ring or insane mirrorable equip, such as the Glyph Mark bow.
28) An end-game option is to switch to a 6-link windripper. The elemental version of this build is a bit tricky, but provides an equal or higher clear speed, while adding more magic find (one day I'll write a extra section!)
29) Atziri's step are hands down the best boots for the build
30) Rat's nest is hands down the best helmet. Alpha's howl is another decent option
31) Daresso's is a decent chest if you can get your resists elsewhere
32) With enough DPS you can replace your heralds with haste for even more and faster farming. However, we're talking of 20000+ tornado tooltip shot DPS
33) Vaal haste is amazing. So is assassins mark and portal. Optimizing those and your flask usage results in a huge clear speed increase.
34) Optimize your flasks for atziri/uber-atziri! Check the flask section if you intend to do those runs
35) Not a ingame item, but get a SSD. Your load times will be super fast, you'll save a lot of time and have more fun in general (much more satisfying and cheaper upgrade than better GPU/CPU)
36) Don't use queen of the forest, without alphas howl. Don't use alphas howl without grace. I don't recommend using grace. Don't use all 3, unless you're playing on hardcore. And even then, think twice, before doing so.
37) If you get a blue harbinger with a single "tyrannical" mod you can regal it (don't augment) and ask a player with Elreon+Tora level 8 to multimod the bow. Usually the result will be a 300+ DPS bow and very sellable. With a lot of luck it can reach up to 480+ DPS (we're talking 1:200 luck though)
38) Vaal level 20 hatred and reduced mana. Don't vaal any other non leveled/qualitied gems or you'll have 20/20 hindsight
39) You can level the increased duration in the CWDT cluster. CWDT only limits the level of active gems
40) Meginords is a very strong choice during the beginning of the league and should only be replaced once you have a very strong bow and decent equipment. Ideally only replace it for a really good rare belt or doryanis (in order to use one more unique, usually atziri/drillneck)
41) +Mana is a pretty strong attribute that especially helps if you have low accuracy/crit chance or run 50% mana regen maps a lot


GGG - for this awesomesauce game

C4pture (ingame: ShrubSquad) - he was the one who came up with the original tree (but ended up playing something else)

Panini_aux_olives - Useful thoughts, also answering the questions of other players, which helps a lot

PePewPewPewPewPewPewPewPew - for providing some enlightening thoughts
obsidiandawn - for providing the arcane circles brush pack, that I used to create the images.

Corrections and useful thoughts:


Buy me a beer (FAQ included)


Q: Why now? It wasn't here before
A: I received several suggestions/questions about a donation link before. During that time I had a stable job and didn't want to accept the money. Maybe I was foolish. Right now I'm taking part-time jobs and it's hard to find time for POE/guide updates, so it'd help me and would also open more time for working on the guide.

Q: Will donating give me any extra advantage?
A: No. I despise the pay to win philosophy. This guide will always be updated and free for everyone. I enjoyed writing and keeping it polished. Supporting me should only be done out of gratitude/wish to support. I can list your name/nickname, if you wish though, PM me for that.

Q: I'm a admin/mod and I object
A: There is no trading involved, so it's not against the forum rules AFAIK (it's like supporting streamers), however if there's any issues, please contact me.

Q: Will you add this to every thread?
A: No, only the filter/archer guide.

Q: So how do I throw money at you?
A: If you're confident that you want to do it AND can afford it (also donate to GGG first, they're doing the real work here, click on this link:


Last edited by NeverSink on Apr 16, 2016 2:38:50 PM

IMPORTANT: This build is something the original build can expand into. Please note; this is not a 400 rarity, 60 quantity magic finder, who farms voll 24/7. This is a swift, deadly and very fun to play damage dealer, who also happens to find tons of loot. We can limit ourself at 120-300 magic find with up to 45 quantity, run any map, unique map and farm most map mods, with the exception of "cannot leech". I like my builds to be swift, rewarding and adrenalin-filled and this setup is the manifistation of that goal.

1) This build expands upon the original build, it's designed for experienced players and requires some currency to pull off properly. Think of it as of an addon. The good thing about it, it costs ~25 respec points, so if you farm up enough currency and/or get a godly harbinger you can always go back to the normal version
2) Do NOT attempt to play this setup without a windripper. This is not a VERY expensive build, but it's not designed to be played on a low budget
3) I highly suggest to be familiar with the "normal" build, before trying out the windripper setup.
5) This build is not recommended for beginners

Pro's and con's:

  • Insane clearspeed (equal or higher compared to 350 DPS harbingers)
  • Consistent freeze and chill
  • A swift, powerful magic finder
  • High mobility
  • Can stack a lot of survival or magic find
  • Fun to play
  • CoC variation possible
  • Several defensive mechanics.
  • Uses a great weapon with massive attack speed/crit chance
  • Can still stack some rarity, great for new leagues.
  • Reflect reduces reflected damage by 75%
  • Gains a lot more bonus damage from drillneck
  • Can run elemental or physical reflect maps, by swapping gems out
  • Can use divination distillate to gain MF, resistances and stabilize mana

  • Not exactly cheap
  • Reflect is a tricky beast
  • Leech is a problem
  • Immortal call won't help VS reflect

  • A Level 85 or higher ranger
  • A Windripper
  • At least one 5-link
  • The courage to step out of your comfort zone
  • A rats nest and at least some magic find is recommended for a good experience

So how does this build work? Quite simple. It relies on pure elemental damage. This allows us to save a lot of nodes in the regular skilltree and instead stack up some additional crit, life and stats, which frees up some slots on the gear allowing us to stack more magic find.

Other than the regular build, we gain most of our flat damage from our auras, support gems and items and scale it using our support tree and to a lesser extent more support gems. This makes percentual damage increases from the tree much more valuable, as we have less of those and more flat damage.

So let's begin.

Bes asured that I'll improve this part with fancy picture over time, but let's get the most important things going first:


CORE SKILLTREE - this is the core skilltree. I'm pretty confident that every single node here is requiered for your windripper build to work. Now it's up to you to optimize it with around 0-27 more points depending on our level.

BALANCED SKILLTREE - This is the skilltree im using. It designed to be fairly tanky (tankier than the augmented skilltree), while having high crit, speed and damage. Please note the jewel slot next to vaal pact. It's ideal for the static electricity jewel.

Even you want to stack up even more damage (especially on a high level character, you can go with this):

WINDRIPPER "DESTROYER" SKILLTREE - If you're playing hardcore and want to stack insane amounts of life I can recommend this option. (210% life + 4 jewel sockets):

If you're playing hardcore and want to stack insane amounts of life I can recommend this option. (210% life + 4 jewel sockets):


In short, you can really optimize your skilltree towards your playstyle.


We're going for maximum clearspeed. I recommend running LA or SA with a WR build. Though TS or IS are no mistake either. The links:

Main attack:

Single attack/secondary attack:

The remaining links are mostly similar, the only thing changes is the aura. I recommend replacing hatred with haste or wrath, though I like hatred more, since our clear and attack speed is high enough anyway.

Anyway, the other links:

CWDT Setup + Vaal Haste

Auras and buffs:

Herald setup:

I'll update it with more details over the next weeks


Please note, this is a VERY expensive setup, you don't need 6-links, lightning coils or similar gear, however this demonstrates a lot how far and strong this build can become.

I'll include cheaper options over the next days.


I'll proceed updating this guide over the next. I'll also add videos


Buy me a beer (FAQ included)


Q: Why now? It wasn't here before
A: I received several suggestions/questions about a donation link before. During that time I had a stable job and didn't want to accept the money. Maybe I was foolish. Right now I'm taking part-time jobs and it's hard to find time for POE/guide updates, so it'd help me and would also open more time for working on the guide.

Q: Will donating give me any extra advantage?
A: No. I despise the pay to win philosophy. This guide will always be updated and free for everyone. I enjoyed writing and keeping it polished. Supporting me should only be done out of gratitude/wish to support. I can list your name/nickname, if you wish though, PM me for that.

Q: I'm a admin/mod and I object
A: There is no trading involved, so it's not against the forum rules AFAIK (it's like supporting streamers), however if there's any issues, please contact me.

Q: Will you add this to every thread?
A: No, only the filter/archer guide.

Q: So how do I throw money at you?
A: If you're confident that you want to do it AND can afford it (also donate to GGG first, they're doing the real work here, click on this link:


Last edited by NeverSink on Feb 13, 2016 11:02:04 PM
Nice Guide! I will try it right now with a new char from scratch in Rampage :)
Pretty solid guide so far. Looking forward to some videos. I'll be using this build for my new character thanks!
i will be trying this build. i really hope it works well and if i need help i may ask you things, specially cuz im rather new and i barely understand what some of the abbreviations stand for. thank you for the guide=)
Thanks for the feedback guys.

I've changed and improved the intermediate leveling trees a bit. Nothing huge or major, just changed the order a little bit and added a few "in between steps" to optimize the process.
Last edited by NeverSink on Sep 7, 2014 6:04:14 AM
Pretty much exactly what I was looking for, looks very promising. Nice one.
I've been looking for a Atziri viable ranger build that can 'alch and go' maps, spent a day cycling through all the different puncture + Ice Shot / Tornado Shot / 4L HoA IceShot builds since I main casters and ranger is a new area for me, but you had me at
Path of Exile has one rule - prioritize defense. If the defensive mechanics of a build fail, the build is bad and you should feel bad.

Excellent written guide. I'll give it a fresh start in like 30 minutes.
is it viable for HC

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