HC Dual Siege Ballista Chin Sol build 2.1

Why This build?
This build synergizes Chin Sol's double damage at close range ability with Empire's grasp reverse knockback effect, the newly buffed point blank shot via keystone, the siege ballista gem, the iron grip keystone, and our old favorite rain of splinters. It makes use of frenzy charges and 2 vaal haste gems to further buff attack speed on the ballistae, ultimately giving them much better than expected clear speed. It can be played in a very fast style in relatively safe areas, walking through groups and destroying them with totems at close range, or the range of the ballistae can also offers the opportunity to fight dangerous enemies from approximately 1.5 screens away. As an example, I recently did temple piety by summoning ballistae at maximum range repeatedly and was able to stay completely out of her lightning aoe while doing so. I have run it up to lvl 82 on talisman hc so far and it has been performing well in up to T-7 maps (as far as my pool has gotten up to this point) It also offers a reasonable life pool (currently approx. 4.4k) and decent phys damage mitigation. Also, it has been working effectively with no gear having over 4 links. I hope others find the build as enjoyable as I have, and welcome any feedback.

Attack & Defense stats at lvl 82
Ballista base tooltip dps: 7254 with 4 frenzy charges: 8904 With frenzy charges and vaal haste: 10,176 multiply dps by 2-2.5 at close range-point blank range. Multiply by 2 again for 2 ballistae. Top dps against bosses with both ballistae firing at close range is currently a bit over 50k.

Life: 4397
Ele res: all 75
Chaos res: 0 (60% via tree, gems and gear)
phys mit: 51% base, 73% with granite flask of iron skin
Evasion 16%

Necessary Gear, My current gear list
Key gear for this build is as follows:

Chin Sol doubles all damage at close range. The drawback has always been that archers tend toward the squishy, and close range is dangerous. The siege ballistae eliminate this problem. I can confirm based on observation that close range is calculated from the ballista, not from the character.

Drillneck grants increased damage equal to pierce chance. Siege ballista grants a 100% pierce chance. Drillneck provides a dramatic increase in damage when used with this skill.

Empire's Grasp: Reverses knockback effect and grants lvl 10 knockback to socketed gems. Normally Chin Sol has a knockback effect at close range, pushing enemies out of the desirable double damage zone. Empire's grasp turns this into a benefit, pulling enemies in to the Ballistae for extra damage and (with the fending cluster) keeping all but the fastest enemies occupied and away from the character.

Key Jewel: Rain of splinters is a must for this build, giving the ballista LMP at relatively little cost in terms of damage.

My current gear is as follows:

Gems currently in use:

Weapon: Frenzy, GMP, Curse on hit, Temp chains (would add faster attacks if 5L)
Though we can do no damage once we get ancestral bond, our self attack accomplishes several desirable things: 1. It builds frenzy charges, it applies temp chains, which increases the ability of our ballistae to perform crowd control with knockback, and, with the fending cluster, adds some knock back effect that I use by firing from behind my ballistae at long range, pulling groups of mobs toward them.

Gauntlets: Siege Ballista, Faster Attacks, Slower Projectiles, added fire
Three green and a red is likely the best we can do on gauntlets, and we want the free knockback on siege ballista. See leveling section on gem choices prior to getting point blank and iron grip keystones.

Vaal haste, Vaal haste, increased duration, herald of ash
Two vaal hastes can be kept up not quite indefinitely and adds significantly to clear speed. herald of ash finds a convenient place here.

Helm: Cast when damage taken lvl 1, enfeeble lvl 5, increased duration, hatred
This build gets hit less often than many, but some damage is, of course, unavoidable. Having enfeeble proc immediately increases the tankiness of the build when necessary. This is a convenient spot for hatred.

Boots: Blink arrow, faster attacks, flame golem, Minion (damage/life/ele res)
Blink arrow is useful for changing elevations and getting out of tight spots. I use flame golem for added dps, 4th gem is a matter of taste. I would probably recommend minion life.

Tree at lvl 82


Normal: Oak
Cruel: Kraityn
Merc: Kraityn

Leveling advice
Up to lvl 18 I used a random bow with shrapnel arrow and added a siege ballista companion as soon as I could. At lvl 18, roth's reach is a good upgrade, and I changed over to frenzy/LMP as my main attack. At lvl 28 I switched to doomfletch, which can take you to lvl 50, though there is an optional upgrade to death's harp. Around lvl 50 you'll want to buy a decent 200 dps or so phys bow to level to 62 until you can use chin sol. the last but of 50-62 feels a little slow, but I promise it is worth it once the build is fully functional. Add other key pieces of gear as you go along

In terms of order of operations on the skill tree, I would hit the major landmarks in this order, more or less, though the specifics of your journey may vary.: Art of the gladiator, Sentinel, totemic zeal, ancestral bond, totemic mastery, point blank, fending, iron grip, resolute technique. Pick up life along the way and use the 30 point nodes you will pass to fix stat issues until they can be fixed through gear.

Good Luck

Last edited by Orion72 on Dec 17, 2015, 1:42:44 PM
im trying this build and holy crap good luck getting 3 green on empires grasp
If can only get 2 green 2 red on gaunts, sub out slower proj for weapon ele dam. Damage will be more elemental, but similar.

Also, have substituted proj weakness for temp chains in frenzy links. More damage and extra knockback seems more effective than temp chains was.
Last edited by Orion72 on Dec 19, 2015, 3:45:09 PM
tbh better combo for you boots would be 2x 2link isntead of 4link and have blink+FA and CWDT+flame golem. CWDT golem is great, it's always up
Really enjoying this build so far besides spending 300 chromes and not getting 3 green empires. I noticed you take some armor nodes and was wondering if this was better than just straight life. I have taken your build concept and reworked the pathing to something I feel more comfortable playing. If you could please take a look and give me your thoughts it would be much appreciated.


Also with 75% mana reseve I think at least one -8 Elreon ring is going to be necessary.

edit - currently spec'd into revelry and having no issues so mana on hit jewel should work just fine.
Last edited by platinumfetus on Dec 20, 2015, 4:31:32 AM
This is an interesting build, however there is room for improvement.

I would recommend that the CWDT be placed in the gloves since there are two reds used that way.

I would recommend that the helm be used for blink arrow, faster attacks, flame golem and minion life so that you can take advantage of the +2 to minion gems affix.

I would put the siege ballista gem in the chest so that if a 5L or 6L comes available additional gems can be added.

I think there are also optimizations that can be made to the skill tree, however I am not ready to make any recommendations on those changes at this point. I tried some out that were ok but did result in some early lack of dexterity. I just changed my tree to follow the guide for now to see how things work as documented. The tree is fine, but I expect to recommend some optimizations at a later time.
what is your tool tip dps?
Platinumfetus--your tree looks quite reasonable from my perspective. I didn't have mine fully planned out from the start, and it grew somewhat organically as I was figuring out the build. I rather like yours and feel like it may have less wasted space.

As far as armor vs. life, I feel like this may be a matter of taste/comfort. I don't have enough data to give an empirical opinion. I do know that I like having 50%+ phys mit when mapping when possible.

Wegebah--appreciate the feedback. Reason for putting ballista in the gloves is to take advantage of the free knockback gem, given that I had no 5-L. With a 5-L or 6-L chest, it would certainly be easier to get the desired colors putting ballista in the chest. Other recommendations seem solid and are appreciated. I would be interested in your thoughts on optimizing the tree. As I said above, I rather made this one up as I went along.

ezhilarasan--see the attack/defense stats section

After action report: Ran the build to 85, got to feeling excessively invincible, and tried residence dominus with 4 damage mods. Almost beat him too, but missed a dodge on his lighting, got stunned, and that was that. Based on how it had been performing up to that point, I feel like the build should fare well deep into the endgame played perhaps justa little bit more conservatively than I did. :>

Glad if some of you are having fun with it.
Havin a blast so far. I'm lvl 71 now. using tabula rasa with faster attacks-PPAD-added fire-slower projectiles and max. quality knockback. Ballistas shred everything to pieces altough I'm a bit squishy because of the tabula.
I think that the build could be good with crit. If you have high enough crit chance and take king of the hill. That way knockback gem would not be necessary and even a good 5l is enough.

Regardless how you put it, Chin Sol will always be somewhat poor option for SB totem builds, regardless of 100% more damage upclose. SB's primary scaling stat (and most important one due to silly attacking animation) is attack speed, bow, gear, talents, jewels, the more the merrier. If you grab Lioneye's Glare or a simple physical 1,65-1,7 thicket, you will clear maps quite a bit faster and safer in comparison to using Chin Sol. Give it a try, you won't be disappointed.

Last edited by Grimlocke_ on Dec 29, 2015, 12:29:51 PM

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