[New Video][2.0.3] Thedalus' DW RT Reave (20 APS/160,000 DPS)

Last Update: September 19th, 2015 (see notes below)



Hey there folks, this is my first build thread so I hope you enjoy it.
I have only been playing for a few months and this is still my first toon, I've leveled others but this is the one I really raised by myself and the one where my currency goes into.
The build was done from scratch, I looked into some Reave builds when I started using the forums but I didn't really enjoy them. I like swords and attacking fast and everybody seemed to be playing Crit Dagger builds, so that was a turn off for me.

The build is centered on three core aspects:
(1) attacking really fast, 20 attacks per second when buffs are up.
(2) stacking armour, estimated physical damage reduction is normally capped.
(3) never missing hits, which paired with high aps highly benefits leech, knockback and stun.

I've uploaded a video (the mandatory Gorge clear) that you should see before going further. If you enjoy then start scrolling down and learn how the toon is built. All feedback is appreciated, I'm sure that there are a lot of builds around here already and I'm kind of afraid this won't be totally groundbreaking but I'm also still learning a lot of things. The toon is doing really well late game (Lv92) having downed Atziri easily several times and now preparing to face Uber.

So here's everything, let me know what you think of it. :)


I'll add more videos if the thread turns out to be helpful/interesting to people.



This video shows the powerful combination of Daresso's Defiance and a CwDT + Immortal setup.
Since we're attacking incredibly fast with not so powerful hits, not only can Leech make up for the reflect damage most of the time, but the damage being gradually taken will keep triggering Immortal Call, making you Immune to Physical Damage for the most part of the run. So the mod "Physical Reflect" is ACTUALLY a GREAT thing for this build:



Defensive stats:


The numbers you see have the following defensive buffs ON: Determination; 6 Endurance Charges; Lion's Roar; Taste of Hate; Chaos Golem.
- Chaos Golem represents 4% of the reduction. The Endurance Charges 4% each. Without Lion's Roar, you'll have 82%.

Offensive stats:


The numbers you see have the following offensive buffs ON: Blood Rage; Herald of Ash; Hatred; 5 Frenzy Charges; Onslaught; Vaal Haste; Lion's Roar; Taste of Hate; Atziri's Promise.
- Notice that I only show you the bottom part of the stats. This has a reason: I'm using an Axe on my Main Hand that does not attack, only my Off Hand attacks (Reave doesn't work with Axes), if you're new to the game you'll understand further down why I do this. But for now keep in mind that the tooltip will give you wrong numbers to your DPS and your attack time. Only the bottom part of the stats should be considered then.



These make the basic structure of the build. I only use three and they should be fairly easy to understand why I use them.

(1) Iron Reflexes, this will be the first one to grab. It basically converts all your Evasion to Armour, which is mandatory in a Armour oriented build. A lot of the items will have hybrid Armour/Evasion stats so this is very important to make sure that all those numbers go right into your Armour value, for later being buffed by the Determination aura.

(2) Unwavering Stance, this keystone works together with Iron Reflexes, since you don't have any Evasion there's no drawback in picking this one and saying goodbye to stuns.

(3) Resolute Technique, this one basically makes sure that you won't miss any hits, even against shrouded enemies or while blinded. Accuracy is 100%. It will also free us from all the Crit nodes that normally overwhelm builds, making room for other stuff.


- (1) Keystones. Iron Reflexes goes first, you want to benefit from this as soon as possible.
- (2) Unwavering Stance. Since you already have Iron Reflexes, let's grab Unwavering Stance as soon as possible, stuns are annoying for a Melee toon.
- (3) Resolute Technique. This will provide a decent DPS boost since until here you have probably neglected everything that involves accuracy.
- (4) Go all the way up from Resolute Technique and grab Sovereignty. This will be necessary to be able to run 2 Auras + 1 Herald.
- (5) After this you're free to develop the rest of the tree as you wish. Grab the DPS nodes first if you're feeling tanky enough.



- Daresso's Defiance (absolute core), this is the most important item on the build. It provides a large amount of physical survivability through Iron Reflexes and Endurance Charges (+4% Phys Dmg Reduction) on kill, plus the Onslaught buff when you get hit. Running 6 Endurance Charges, Daresso's Defiance can provide you 24% additional reduction on top of all the Armour. And it still gives you Leech and Maximum HP increase. This is an absolute must in this build. They are also inexpensive so it shouldn't be hard to get your hands on one.

- Soul Taker (core), you'll need a Soul Taker, in late game. This is somewhat expensive, but you can get the cheaper ones out there for around 5 or 6ex. During leveling phase using the Blood Magic gem is fine but later you'll want to increase your DPS. The Soul Taker can have a terrible roll because it won't hurt your DPS, since Reave does not attack with Axes. You will only attack with the other weapon, which must be a sword. Soul Taker is used only for the "Insufficient Mana Can't Prevent Your Melee Attacks" mod. Basically, you won't spend mana on Reave or Whirling Blades.
NOTE: It's very hard to sustain mana when attacking over 15 times every second. If you don't want to buy a Soul Taker consider using Blood Magic on your setup.

- Alpha's Howl (core) and Devoto's Devotion (recommended), you can tell from my picture that I'm using Devoto's Devotion. However, until you get yourself an Enlighten Lv3, you'll need to use Alpha's Howl + Enlighten Lv2 to run two Auras + one Herald. My suggestion is level up using your own Enlighten with Alpha's Howl, and once it reaches Lv3, just switch for the Devoto's Devotion. The Devoto's isn't core by any means, it doesn't open up new mechanics or anything, the reasons I chose it are because it provides a very high amount of Armour (~1100 with Iron Reflexes), %20 movement speed and %16 attack speed are huge, and most importantly, it deals with any Dexterity issues you may have (you'll need at least 155) giving you ~60 Dex.

- Surgebinders (optional), I used Surgebinders leveling up since you'll have 6 Endurance Charges and 5 Frenzy Charges. It's a really nice DPS boost, but late game I suggest switching to something that provides HP.

- Lion's Roar (core), your incredible attack speed combined with this flask will make sure that most melee bosses can't even touch you. Just turn it on and press the ground and see them lose their HP without being able to land a hit.

- Taste of Hate (luxury), got 12ex to spare? Best flask in the game. If not, use whatever you prefer.

- Atziri's Promise (very good cheap item), it's a really nice DPS boost for its price, just get one and you'll be happy. The Chaos Resistance is also welcome.


[4Link RRGB] : Enlighten + Herald of Ash + Hatred + Determination
- As mentioned already, we'll run 2 Auras and 1 Herald most of the time. Herald of Ash and Hatred are two pure eDPS buffs and will halve your clear time. Determination is used because you're stacking a lot of Armour and this will boost all of that to very high values, giving you very high physical damage reduction.
Variation: Switch Herald of Ash with Arctic Armour if you want more survivability and don't mind sacrificing some eDPS.

The cool thing about this set up is also being able to switch to Purities anytime you want (example: elemental reflect maps).

[4Link RRRB] : CwDT(lv10) + Increased Duration(lv20) + Summon Chaos Golem (lv12) + Immortal Call (lv12)
- Immortal Call has priority over Daresso's Defiance Onslaught buff, and will consume all of your Endurance Charges (max 6) granting you a nice period of physical immunity. With the gems set up at this level the Chaos Golem will also constantly provide you with +4% flat physical damage reduction.

[4Link RGBB] : Whirling Blades + Fortify + Curse on Hit + Enfeeble
- Whirling Blades will be your moving/dodging skill. Use it to dodge mobs, ranged attacks and move around in maps. It is linked to Fortify which applies 20% reduction on hits taken and Enfeeble which decreases physical damage output from mobs by a lot. When you use Whirling Blades into a boss or a pack of mobs, they will be Enfeebled and you'll be Fortified, allowing you to absorb their hits easily.

[3Link RRG] : Blood Magic + Blood Rage + Increased Duration
- Because Blood Rage is (1) a nice leech boost, (2) a nice attack speed boost, (3) a frenzy charge source. Mandatory to have.

[2Link + 1] : Vaal Haste + Increased Duration and Vaal Reave
- Vaal Haste is just an insane aura buff that increases your move and attack speed in incredible amounts. Vaal Reave is not necessarily supported because you will need it to stack the 4 extra charges on Reave, making it's Area of Effect incredibly wide. You need practice to master Vaal Reave + Vaal Haste in order to be able to sustain them both during a map. You'll probably fail the first times but once you get it right, it's incredibly rewarding.

[6Link RRRGGB] : Reave + Faster Attacks + Multistrike + Melee Physical Damage + Added Fire Damage + Increased Area of Effect
- This is your main set up. To enter really late game you'll need the 6 link. Until then settle for a 5, just take Added Fire Damage out of the set up. If you're interested in an insane DPS boost for single targets, you can switch Increased Area of Effect for Concentrated Effect. This is highly not recommended to farm maps because you'll lose a lot of AoE.
Variation: Switch Faster Attacks with Hypothermia if you want to increase your DPS sacrificing APS. This change works well with the Arctic Armour variation. However, beware that any change in the build along the line of increasing DPS sacrificing APS will have consequences on Reflect maps and should be made with caution.
Variation: Switch Added Fire Damage with Life Gain On Hit if you want to highly increase your survivability. Hitting a group of enemies at the speed of 20 attacks per second will put you in full life almost instantly, as long as you don't die from one shots it should be very very hard to kill you. This variation is also recommended for the Elemental Reflect maps where you might wanna get your eDPS.

Normal: +40HP
Cruel: +8% Attack Speed
Merciless: +1 Frenzy Charge


Here's for comparison purposes, the gear I'm using at the moment.

:: JEWELS ::


- Even though this is a melee build, keep in mind that when Vaal Reave is on, and when using the Increased Area of Effect gem, you'll get more range than most rangers. The approach should be gather souls until you have enough for your Vaal skills, and then start Reaving them, check the video above to see what I mean. You shouldn't lose your Vaal Reave buff (like I do around 03:34) as long as you keep hitting stuff, your high range will stay. There's no need to click enemy mobs. Click the ground in front of your feet so your toon remains still. When mobs are dead, just Whirling Blade to the next pack. At bosses, make sure you have Lion's Roar ready. Keep them at the wall and far away from you, you're immune to melee bosses like this.

- About the gear you see in the tab above, my gear at the moment is expensive yes, but keep in mind I started this character with 0 of everything, it's my first character. You can level up with cheap gear and most of the stuff I use are luxury items. Only the chest armour will require a lot of farming from you, 6 links are always expensive. My sword is around 360pDPS, it cost me 25 exalts. You can find stuff around 300 for just a couple. I used a 270pDPS sword until level 85.


Pros, you'll be able to run just about every map mod, besides Blood Magic. Even reflect shouldn't be an issue as long as you're careful and use flasks. You won't be hitting hard, you'll be hitting fast, so you won't one shot yourself, the leech should be enough to keep you alive, and if it isn't, you'll have time to use flasks.
Cons, you really need nice reflexes going late game. This build has no evasion, little dodge and little block, meaning that if you don't get out of the way, you will get hit. Some mobs hit pretty hard even for high defenses, and some bosses benefiting from certain mods will put you down with one hit. You have Whirling Blades, just use it to not be where the hard hits are landing. Practice this against easy mobs, like giants. Trying to dodge giant hits is your training ground.


This is a fun build, made for fun purposes. I made this build from scratch also because when I started playing PoE the incredibly overwhelming amount of information was such that I just decided to do what I like to do: create a super fast swordsman.
Apparently, and thankfully, this game will allow you to build just about anything if you put effort into it, the freedom that it has is amazing.

If you have any questions or any criticism regarding the build please feel free to speak your mind, I'll be glad to reply! I like to encourage people playing melee chars because I don't see them that often, and when I do it's always Cyclone! I've helped many people that were trying out Reave and always enjoy helping them out, it's great that more people like this kind of gameplay.

Thanks for the attention and enjoy the build!
Stay safe and watch out for them Devourers!
Last edited by Thedalus on Sep 22, 2015, 4:10:50 PM

1.1. - (September 19th, 2015)
#Passive Skill Tree:
- Switched the points "Aura Effect" and "Mana Reservation" near the "Sovereignty" node since this way it makes it possible to use the two Auras + one Herald with an Enlighten Lv3, a much more affordable option than the previous one which required either an Enlighten Lv4 or an Enlighten Lv2 + Alpha's Howl.
Credits to this change go to mllody313! Thanks for the suggestion bud!
- Skilled the points "Life and Armour" and "Juggernaut"

- With the slight change to the tree that allows you to run the aura set up with an Enlighten Lv3, I added Devoto's Devotion as the go to helmet for when you decide to drop the Alpha's Howl.

#Skill Gem Setup:
- Added some variations, the first is using Arctic Armour instead of Herald of Ash. This way you get more survivability while sacrificing some eDPS and clearspeed. The second one works well with this line of thought, it consists of replacing Faster Attacks with Hypothermia. The last one is replacing Added Fire Damage with Life Gain on Hit, with 20aps this will make you heal back to full life almost instantly after taking a huge hit. Should also be specially considered on Elemental Reflect maps.
Last edited by Thedalus on Sep 19, 2015, 1:43:45 PM
That Gorge run was really fun to watch. Great build! Please do record when you face Uber :>
Just Divine this Soul taker..
Ok .. i really don't get why on your offenses screenshot you've scrolled down so that we can't see your DPS nor attacks per second. It's an honest mistake i'm sure ...
"I'm going to show you pain you never knew existed, you're going to see a whole new spectrum of pain!!!!! Like a RAINBOW!"
Hi! Regarding those two aspects, they both have to do with the use of Soul Taker.

I scrolled down because the "attacks per second" and "damage per second" lines are calculated wrong, because they take into account the Soul Taker in my Main Hand.

What Reave does is attacking with your weapons alternating them, so if you have two attacking weapons, your DPS is somewhere near the average of both weapons, that's how the Offence tab tooltip calculates both APS and DPS.
However, if you use one weapon that Reave can't attack with (like a Soul Taker axe), all your attacks will come from your other weapon (my Corsair Sword), without losing any Dual Wielding buffs. Remember that I use Soul Taker solely for the purpose of sustaining mana.
This is a strange mechanic but I kinda like it. There are pros and cons in using this kind of approach, one con is definitely the tooltip being wrong. :p

To calculate both APS and DPS you have to do it yourself with those stats.
For example, in that situation my attack speed modifier is at +973%. My Corsair Sword has a base attack speed of 1.89aps. If you add +973% (that's 1.89*10.73) you get ~20,3 attacks per second.
With this value you can calculate DPS because you can see your Off Hand weapon damage output at 4045-12342. Calculating the average of these numbers you get the average damage of your hits (that's 8193,5). Multiply by 20,3 to get the true DPS value: ~166,300.

With Resolute Technique there are no evaded hits, and no critical hits, so that number is final.

Sorry if this was too complicated, but at the moment that's the math that goes into this kind of builds. :p
..and since the Soul Taker doesn't attack, there's no point in Divining it, DPS will remain unchanged.
KorgothBG wrote:
Ok .. i really don't get why on your offenses screenshot you've scrolled down so that we can't see your DPS nor attacks per second. It's an honest mistake i'm sure ...
It's not, he's running Dual Wield while attacking only with his main hand, so his DPS wouldn't be accurate. But, it's not 160k either, even with such attack speed if you hit an elemental reflect rare with let's say 30k elemental deeps it's pepperoni ripperoni or at least drop to 20% of your life pool unless you run Vaal Pact or have a massive amount of life gain on hit. He doesn't have either and yet barely takes any damage.
[2.4] Riff Raff - under 1ex Reave RT DoT Gladiator: http://poeurl.com/C6q
Last edited by Weißenberg on Sep 13, 2015, 10:07:00 AM
Weißenberg wrote:
It's not, he's running Dual Wield while attacking only with his main hand, so his DPS wouldn't be accurate. But, it's not 160k either, even with such attack speed if you hit an elemental reflect rare with let's say 30k elemental deeps it's pepperoni ripperoni or at least drop to 20% of your life pool unless you run Vaal Pact or have a massive amount of life gain on hit. He doesn't have either and yet barely takes any damage.

Calculations are just above, if you notice any mistake please let me know.
You can even calculate just my elemental DPS, which comes only as Fire (Added Fire Damage + Herald of Ash) and Cold (Hatred + Taste of Hate). Like I said, if you're in a map with elemental reflect it will be wise to turn these off because Reave hits a lot of mobs at once and leech might not be enough to sustain that income of reflect. If it's just one mob, there are no issues.

Remember that I do not hit hard, I just hit fast, leech can keep up with attacking fast.

Physical reflection is even less of an issue considering that since the damage isn't taken all at once, at some point Immortal Call will trigger, and you will heal back up to 100% in that time.

Edit: also keep in mind that in the Gorge video I was cursed with Enfeeble.
Last edited by Thedalus on Sep 13, 2015, 10:39:52 AM

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