[2.4] Mines over Matter - Lightning Warp Finally Viable!

This build was created back in 2.2, during the Perandus league. This guide works as is, and will be updated on an irregular basis when I have time. The only updates that have really affected this build since 2.2 have been a fix on mines warping through walls, and several buffs to Weave the Arcane. Nothing has been nerfed, nothing broke, there may be new uniques to theorycraft around and play with, but the core of the build works fine and isn't going anywhere.

Are you the sort of player who always wanted to figure out how to use Lightning Warp as your primary skill? Did you sadly give up on Lightning Warp being anything other more than a mode of transport? Want to do 70k DPS in a dirt cheap 4-link? Ready those skill trees, because with the release of 2.2 Lightning warp went from a joke build to a DPS monster, and its hilariously fun to play.

So whats the basic concept?

Lightning Warp Mines.
Why restrict ourselves to one lightning warp at a time when we could have 9? With mines we could do 7 before, but it was slower and cost an inordinate amount of mana. It wasn't worth it, especially compared to more offensive spells. So what changed? Trickster, specifically the Trickster node, Walk the Aether. Those mana hungry mines are now completely free. What to do with all that mana? Why, use it to extend our life pool, of course! The focus and namesake of this build is my level 92 Trickster from the Perandus League:

Mines Over Matter
Spoiler

Primary skills and supports

Build concept: Lightning Warp Mines are the primary attack. Pick a spot, drop your detonation totem and an Orb of Storms to simultaneously buff your damage and keep the critters off of you, then dump up to twelve mines per second to hunt down and murder any thing on the screen, for free.

Primary Attack: Lightning Warp Mines

Active Defense: Orb of Storms for curses, knockback, blind, and Elemental Overload

Detonate Mines totem for keeping the electricity flowing

Passive Defense #1: Acrobatics, Phase Acrobatics, and other sources of dodge stacking, followed by evasion

Passive Defense #2: Mind over Matter to use all that mana we aren't spending as at least a 43% increase of our effective hit point pool

Last line of Defense: Every bit of life we can get in our pathing

Here's how our skills are linked up:

Lightning Warp Mines
Spoiler
Our primary skill, which will be, barring exceptional circumstances, socketed in our staff.
In order of importance, the linkage is:

Lightning Warp

Remote Mine (Included on Tremor Rod)

Less Duration

Minefield

Controlled Destruction

Mix to taste:

Lightning Penetration

Trap and Mine Damage

Elemental Focus

Added Lightning Damage

Increased AoE

Empower
<Not pictured>
+1-3 to Level of Supported Active Skill Gems

If we are using a Tremor Rod, obviously we don't need to worry about the remote mine gem.
Less duration speeds up our mines to accurately hit moving targets at long range, and now increases damage directly as well.
Minefield is the single biggest damage boost we can get our hands on, at level 21 it multiplies our damage output by a full 2.4 times, I'm hard pressed to think of any support gem that scales that well. Since this build utilizes Elemental Overload, and Elemental Overload cannot activate off of mines, there is no reason to not link Controlled Destruction into your setup.

The rest of the supports will vary with the nuances of your build. A maxed-out Empower gem is good, but not nearly as good as it can be in other builds. Basically, if you use a +3 skill staff and have a L4 corrupted Empower, use it, otherwise don't worry about it. It is not required to push your damage through the roof. Which other supports to use varies based which curse or curses you choose to use. For instance, if you are running conductivity, Trap and Mine Damage is a great way to go so as not to interfere with Shock, or if you are running Temporal Chains and don't care about shock, Lightning Penetration and Elemental Focus win out. Added Lightning Damage should only be considered for the 6th and final slot if you are actively building around shock, and even then its not great.

DO NOT USE CONCENTRATED EFFECT.
Cutting AoE radius will cripple the overlap radius of your Lightning Warps, which harms single-target damage in addition to cutting the time to cut through packs. For this reason, an Increased AoE gem may be worth considering as your 6th link, depending on your curse setup.

Play with them and adjust as you see fit.

Orb of Storms
Spoiler
This is our multitool, and well worth the body slot. Its our personal bubble, and any poor sap who comes close is going to get zapped, pushed away, blinded, slathered in curses, and will more than likely give us a boost of 40% more damage with which to zap them even harder. Linkage:

Orb of Storms

Knockback

Curse on Hit

Temporal Chains

Conductivity

<Not Pictured>
Elemental Weakness

Alternatives:

<Not Pictured>
Enfeeble

<Not Pictured>
Blind

Knockback is more important than it looks, and is totally justified as the first link on Orb of Storms. Yes, it helps maintain a bubble of personal space free from the grubby hands of the undead peasantry. It also functionally increases damage output by pushing melee range enemies out of their attack range and into Lightning Warp's sweet spot for double damage. With aggressive play you can effectively pin bosses to walls within the radii of both warps.

Links 3-6 are for all the curses your tree and gear can support. Which curses are a matter of personal preference, keep in mind that Conductivity increases your chance to shock in addition to lowering resistance, and increases shock in a quantity significantly higher than anywhere else in the build.

The reason Temporal Chains is listed higher than either Conductivity or Elemental Weakness, is because combined with knockback and a steady stream of lightning bolts caused my dumping mines within Orb's radius, entire packs of mobs and their grubby little hands will be kept out of melee range. And this actually does increase damage, because it makes it easy to keep enemies within the radius of both ends of Lightning Warp.

In a 3link where you cannot support curse on hit, or if you have more links in your body armor than additional curse slots, use a blind gem for more effective evasion. With how quickly Lightning Warp activates Orb of Storms, blind will consistently affect every enemy on the screen.

Detonate Mine Totem
Spoiler
This is our go fast button. With one of these out and the Volatile Mines passive, mines detonate as fast as they can be deployed. Unfortunately, there is not a whole lot of relevant gem support for this totem. Linkage:

Detonate Mines

Spell Totem

Minion and Totem Resistance

Increased Duration

I don't believe cast speed affects totem placement speed, and its definitely irrelevant for detonation rate with Volatile Mines, so don't bother socketing a Faster Casting gem. The Increased Duration gem is a luxury that can be lived without, so if you are squeezed for gem slots, consider putting a golem into the last slot since it can share the Minion and Totem Resistance support.
Secondary skills and supports

Cast on Damage Taken
Spoiler
Nothing special here, your standard CWDT setup plus another detonate mines.
Linkage:

Cast on Damage Taken

Detonate Mines

Immortal Call

Increased Duration

Emergency mine detonation and damage prevention.


Leap Slam
Spoiler
Leap Slam is Leap slam. Its also a way for us to acquire Fortify. Linkage:

Leap Slam

Fortify

Increased Attack Speed

Increased Area of Effect


Stone Golem
Spoiler
A stone golem can be a great tank and distraction. It can also leave you high and dry wandering around and fighting who knows what when you need it to be somewhere it isn't. Put it in a +2 minion gems hat, if you choose to use it. Linkage:

Stone Golem

Minion Life

Minion and Totem Elemental Resistance

Minion Speed

Alternative combined Leap slam and Stone Golem setup:
Spoiler


Faster Attacks

Fortify

Stone Golem

Leap Slam

I personally recommend combining leap slam and stone golem in a +2 minion helm, since Fortify and Faster Attacks can somewhat function in place of Minion Resistance and Minion Speed.

Give that mine some boots, mines love boots.
Gear
Spoiler
The only three pieces you should go out of your way for are Tremor Rod, Carcass jack, and Atziri's Step, and of those three only Carcass jack may require saving your currency for.

Weapons
Spoiler
Buy the best Tremor Rod you can afford.

The only reason to use anything other than a Tremor Rod is because you are either too low level to equip one, or you are playing solo self-found and have yet to find or chance one. No other weapon is as good as a Tremor Rod. Not wands, not scepters, not even the best +3 lightning skills staff. No other weapon comes close to what Tremor Rod brings to the table.
"
Why is Tremor Rod so good?
Increased mine-laying speed of up to 60%. This is by far the largest boost to clear speed of any weapon for this build, and is the most important factor when shopping for your own. Faster mine laying means not only more Lightning Warps per second, but more time spent running fast, which means higher clear speed versus generic enemies, and more time spent running out of harm's way versus bosses. I have spent extensive playtime with a +3 lightning skills staff, and while that produces higher numbers on paper, the real gains from increased mine-laying speed from Tremor Rod far outstrip it in terms of overall clear speed. Until we get a weapon with comparable mine-laying speed, Tremor Rod will continue to be the top weapon for this build.
"
What about the other stats?
Tremor Rod has a built-in level 10 Remote Mine gem, which equates to 39% more damage as well as a 35% less mine damage multiplier. Together, they equal about a 10% less damage multiplier for LW mines. It frees up a slot for a different gem, but considering the damage multiplier on Remote Mine gems, its more of a convenience issue than an extra link.
"
But what about the Mines can be Detonated an additional time mod? That looks awesome!
It is awesome, but not for the reason you think it is.
Playing with a Tremor Rod, you drop mines fast. Its quite easy to hit 100% increased mine laying speed or higher. Sustained mine damage is achieved by standing in place and dropping mines with a detonate mines totem near enemies, dumping mines as fast as you can.
"
So why isn't the second detonation that great?
Because there is a cap to maximum active mines, and a mine has to detonate, travel to its destination, and then rearm before it can detonate a second time. This process is time consuming. In the time required to detonate the same mine twice, you could dump six mines for a totem to detonate once each.
"
But shouldn't there be a point where mines detonate a second time during mine spamming? Shouldn't we try to build around that?
Yes, there is a point where this happens, and it only ever happens when not running minefield. In order just to break even you need to stand in place and drop mines for four seconds straight, and up until that point you will be losing damage. Four seconds is entirely too long to stand in place, regardless of what you are fighting. Set minefield, spam mines as fast as you can, and don't worry that they break before they can detonate a second time, you aren't losing out on any damage.
"
So whats good about a second detonation if it doesn't up my DPS?
One word: mobility.
Tremor Rod goes fast. It mines fast so you can run fast, and mining on the run is where the second detonation shines. Whenever you have to move, Tremor Rod is there. With a totem up, you can afford to move around without crippling your damage. Without a totem, you can stutter dropping and detonating mines as you run, which is ideal for upping clear speed vs trash monsters. Get used to detonating mines manually as you run, because it's one of the best things you can do to clear maps quickly.
"
But what if I don't have a Tremor Rod?
Spoiler
Get one, hell get two and alternate which one is your linking project so that you don't have to worry about breaking your 5link while trying for a 6link. Tremor Rods are dirt cheap, you can get a 60% mine laying speed Tremor Rod for an alchemy orb.
"
But what if I don't want to use a Tremor Rod?
Spoiler
Start wanting one.
"
But I'm too low level, or I'm playing solo self-found!
Spoiler
Okay, now you have a reason to not have a Tremor Rod in your hands.
If you are too low level, level up.
If you are playing SSF, try to chance a Tremor Rod.

If you are working on these and need something to tide you over, here is the ranking on weapons you should use:
Spoiler
#1: Tremor Rod.
#2: +2 Lightning Skills, +1 to all gems staff
#3: +2 Lightning Skills staff
#4: +1 to all skills staff with an Empower
#5: Any staff with at least 4 links
#6: A one handed weapon like a wand or a scepter
#7: If you can't get anything from #1 to #6, now you are just trolling.

Try to get increased spell and/or lightning damage over added damage to spells, Lightning Warp has a 60% damage effectiveness penalty, so in general spell damage beats added damage.

Chestpiece
Spoiler

Carcass Jack, Bronn's Lithe, Cloak of Defiance

The bigger our AoE, the bigger sweet spot where we can deal double damage. Carcass Jack is perfect for this build. Alternatively, a cloak of Defiance can help raise our effective HP pool, and Bronn's Lithe is in theory a phenomenal LW piece, opening up new weapon options, but would be an absolute nightmare to color its sockets. A good rare works too, but in general your gear target for this slot should be Carcass Jack.

Helmet
Spoiler
Try to get a good rare helmet for endgame.
Prioritize resists, life, mana, evasion, and +2 summoning skills, and resistances.

These stats should be pretty self-explanitory, of course only go for +2 summoning if you intend to commit to golem.

Gloves
Spoiler
Whatever rare gives you the best defensive stats.
Life, mana, evasion, resistances.

Boots
Spoiler

Atziri's Step

These are perfect for this build. With Phase Acrobatics, Ghost Dance, and a 16% spell dodge Atziri's Step, we are at a comfy 51% spell dodge, which, coupled with good resists and comfy effective life pool, makes this build eat incinerates and Dominoodles lightning fire hose for breakfast. Also, the 30% movement speed buff is essential for making your mines warp to long range targets faster. This piece is cheap, even for one with good stats. Any solid rare will work until you can equip these.


Amulet
Spoiler
There are three good amulet options now. In all cases, try to get a corrupted amulet with +1 to maximum curse count.

Hinekora's Sight
This item is for stacking dodge and spell dodge. Its an amazing piece stacked on top of all the other dodge options.

The Aylardex
Life, mana, and a boost to Mind over Matter's defensive factor. If you equip this piece, take the Blast cascade node to generate power charges, and focus more on stacking mana to extend your HP pool.

A decent rare amulet with life, mana, resistances, and any other goodies you can get.


Rings
Spoiler

Essence Worm, Doedre's Damning, or any defensive rare/unique ring

Defensive stats are ever a priority, but if we can max out our resistances in other slots then Essence Worm and/or Doedre's Damning allow for utility that we could not otherwise obtain. Doedre's Damning allows us another curse, critical for our Orb of Storms. Essence Worm allows us to run Wrath with +2 level, without touching our mana pool. Other options are available, such as Grace, Herald of Thunder, and Arctic Armour, though the non-aura skills will not get the +2 aura level.

The ideal case is, with a +1 curse amulet and enough resistance in other slots, to run two Essence Worms, one Wrath, one Grace.


Belt
Spoiler
Get a good rare with life and resistances.

A tri-res belt with life is excellent, though if you get a dual res belt with an open suffix slot, get an increased minelaying speed mod off Tora.


Flasks
Spoiler
Recovery:
To hybrid Flask, or not to hybrid flask?
Back in 2.2 when Ascendancy first came out, this was a question. Since then, Weave the Arcane has been buffed significantly, to the point where hybrid flasks are no longer needed. Use life flasks to refill your HP, and just dump mines quickly to refill your MP.

General Utility flask:

Quicksilver Flask
GOTTA GO FLASK

Defensive Buffing:

Jade Flask
Jade is the old standby that will make evasion relevant even if gear is poor. Honestly I should be running one of these now, I just haven't bothered to craft one to my specifications. 4-5 seconds, 30/60 charges.

Stibnite flask
These smoke cloud flasks are pretty neat. 100% increased evasion is nice, not Jade flask nice, but good. The smoke cloud looks like its slow to emerge, but seems that's just the animation and blind goes up quick. Blind halves their chance to hit, it does function on the accuracy equation. The good: It lasts longer than a Jade flask, it recharges quicker, and it can be used 3 times as opposed to two. The bad: It doesn't do jack against ranged attackers shooting you from outside the smoke cloud. Knockback on Orb of Storms already serves the purpose of clearing melee enemies from point blank range (and into LW's sweet spot), and they both have the same weakness with ranged attackers. 5-6 seconds, 10/30 charges.

Quartz Flask
While phasing is irrelevant, 10% dodge and spell dodge is not. Combined with Acrobatics and other dodge passives, its easy to reach 55% dodge and 61% spell dodge with this flask up. Ignores Accuracy equation altogether, and actively reduces incoming spell damage, especially noticeable vs spells like Incinerate or Firestorm. 4-5 Seconds, 30/60 charges.

Which of these three defensive flasks should be used?
Jade flasks will always be good, and can be used in conjunction with either of the other two flasks being compared.

Stibnite Flasks increased evasion can be stacked with Jade Flasks, but the smoke effect is redundant with Orb of Storms and suffers the same drawbacks with ranged. Only use one of these if for some reason you are not using knockback on Orb of Storms, or to combine the 100% increased evasion with a Jade Flask's base evasion.

Quartz Flasks do not reduce attack damage as much as either Jade or Stibnite flasks, but have a huge effect on spell damage, assuming Dodge and Spell Dodge are being stacked. My Quartz flask gets a ton of use, though its a shame Phasing is as useless as it is.

This build is an Acrobatics build, so run Jade + Quartz. If you strip Acrobatics, try Jade + Stibnite.

Other flasks:
Use at your own discretion. Sulphur flasks could be fun, and everyone should have a set of elemental resist flasks sitting in storage.


Mines can navigate a skill tree surprisingly well!
Passive Skill Tree
Spoiler
Core Build, the bare minimum for a LW Miner to function, regardless of Life or ES pathing
Spoiler
https://www.pathofexile.com/passive-skill-tree/AAAABAYCAAQHCSAOSA6OES8RlhHCHwIi9CNfKwoy0TY9NsU8BT1fRUdFfEyzUlNUR13yYqxsC2yMbRlwUXZvfrB_xow2kyeXlZeXl_Sdqp3ZnsSf36BDo6OmvqcItDi0xcBmwcXYJNhU2-flGetj6-7vfPv1

The reason that AoE nodes are considered core pathing, is because with enough AoE we create a "sweet spot" between the start of the Lightning Warp, and the completion of the warp, where both hits deal damage. Keeping enemies in this critical location is the key to absolutely ridiculous amounts of damage. And the more AoE we have, the bigger the sweet spot. Clever Construction is a skill that you don't need most of the time, but when you need it, it becomes absolutely critical. The life nodes linking it can be rearranged for an ES build if needed.


Mind over Matter Acrobatics build, level 69
Spoiler
https://www.pathofexile.com/passive-skill-tree/AAAABAYCAAQHBLMFtQZ3Bx4I9AkgDkgOjhEvEZYRwh8CH1si9CNfJpUrCjBxMtE2PTbFOkI6WDwFPV9FR0V8RZ1JUUt4TLNSU1MxU1JUR1VLVcZWSFq5XfJh4mKsakNsC2yMbRlwUXDUdm9-sH_GgpuD24Uyiw6MNo2_kyeVLpeVl5eX9Jo7muCdqp3ZnsSf36BDogCjo6a-pwi0OLTFtUi3dbzqwFTAZsHFwuzUI9gk2FTb592o5RnrY-vu7hXvfPAf8NX5pPv1

Bandits:
Normal oak for the life, take the skill points in cruel and merciless.

This is the meat of the build.
Acrobatics is supported by Ghost Dance for 45% base dodge and 35% base spell dodge.
Mind over Matter is supported by increased life and mana nodes in Witch, as well as Weave the Arcane in trickster, raising our maximum mana and mana regeneration considerably, as well as a convenient-but-not-build-breaking chance to recover mana upon skill use. Shade form becomes better than Weave the Arcane as gear improves, I would personally hold off on swapping to Shade form until mana from gear equals or surpasses 43% of maximum HP.

Mana recovery is for the most part a nonissue, especially with Weave the Arcane. For reference, in this build a Hallowed Hybrid Life Flask lands somewhere between Divine and Eternal Life flasks in terms of functional life restored, while only storing two uses per flask, instead of three.

Trigger radius passives have been taken in place of damage nodes in the Clever Construction and High Explosives cluster to extend the range of the second half of the warp and snipe enemies at long range; these nodes are actually really useful.

Elemental Overload is a great damage boost that will be activated by Orb of Storms, its important to note than our Lightning Warp mines cannot activate EO even when they crit.

Volatile Mines is worth it for the AoE increase and extra max mine node next to it, even without the instant detonation on mines. The rest should be pretty self-explanatory.


Build, level 83
Spoiler
https://www.pathofexile.com/passive-skill-tree/AAAABAYCAAQHBLMFtQZ3Bx4I9AkgDkgOjhEvEZYRwhZvGmwe8B8CH1si9CNfJKomlSsKMHE2PTbFNuk6QjpYPAU9X0V8RZ1FuUlRS3hMs1JTUzFTUlRHVGJVS1XGVkhauV3yYeJirGpDbAtsjG0ZcFFw1HZvfrB_xoKbg9uEd4Uyiw6MNo2_kyeVLpeVl5eX9Jo7muCdqp2undmexJ_foEOiAKOjpr6nCLQMtDi0xbVIt3W86r6KwFTAZsHFwuzK09Qj1abYJNhU2-fdqONq5CLlGetj6-7tPO4V73zwH_DV-aT79Q==

"
This is my build as of now, working splendidly. At the moment I am comfortable enough with my survivability that I will be pursuing the curse nodes above Elemental Overload in the future. Merciless Labyrinth was solo'd long ago, in a 4link wearing a goldrim, now I'm in a 5link running Wrath on an Essence Worm. That silly goldrim has yet to be replaced, to my shame. I'm sure I could handle Atziri without issue, although I would likely have to tweak my Orb of Storms setup for reflect safety.

This is skill tree is a good place for anyone to end up at. This build did give me my first Atziri wins, though due to my own ineptitude they weren't pretty.


Target for level 89


Current Build, level 90
Spoiler
https://www.pathofexile.com/passive-skill-tree/AAAABAYCAAQHBLMFtQZ3Bx4I9AkgDkgOjhEvEZYRwhZvGjgabB7wHwIfWyL0I18kqiaVJy8rCjBxNj02xTbpOkI6WDrYPAU9X0V8RZ1FuUlRS3hMs1JTUzFTUlRHVGJVS1XGVkhauV3yYeJirGpDbAtsjG0ZcFFw1HZvfrB_xoKbg9uEd4Uyiw6MNo2_kFWTJ5Uul5WXl5f0mjua4J2qna6d2Z7En9-gQ6EvogCjo6a-pwi0DLQ4tMW1SLd1vOq-isBUwGbBxcLsytPUI9Wm2CTYVNvn3ajjauQi5RnrY-vu7DjtPO4V73zviPAf8NX5pPv1?accountName=pieceofsoap&characterName=MinesOverMatter

This is where I am currently at. The reason I have not taken Whispers of Doom as I planned, is that I have yet to 6link my Carcass Jack, so I do not have a place to put Elemental Weakness in the first place. Once I am at least level 91 and have that 6linked body, I will take my final curse. Things are going well, I beat Atziri long ago and am having no trouble clearing rare unidentified T14 maps. I'm currently using a 6linked +3 lightning staff, and want my Tremor Rod back.

Notes on leveling
Spoiler
Now that spell levels have been re-adjusted, the key skills to make this build work, Lightning Warp, Remote Mine, Spell Totem, and Detonate mines are all level 8-10, so if you wanted you could level with this build. If you have a 3link blue socket, you could even run Minefield.

Realistically though, the mana cost for doing that would be astronomical before completing Normal Labyrinth and gaining access to Walk the Aether, and mine laying will be slow before Tremor Rod, the mine laying speed passives only add up later down the road.

So, you can do what I did at the beginning of the league, slap on clarity and level with Fire Trap and Fire Nova Mine. If you have not played a mine build before, I do recommend leveling with a mine skill like FNM just for familiarization purposes, even if FNM will not actively hunt down targets like Lightning Warp mines will.


After befriending a mine, this is what its like to play with one:
Playstyle
Spoiler
Gotta Mine Fast.

Run around, see a pack of monsters, drop spell totem and Orb of Storms, then dump mines like that guy who cant hold all those limes.
The mines pop off of the spell totem, warping at your feet damaging everyone close enough, and seek out individual enemies for the second half of the warp.
Enemies in the sweet spot between warps get hit on both ends, and the mines seek out targets a surprising distance away.
Shockingly, those mine detonation radius passives are actually quite useful.
With a tremor rod, detonating mines at a long range target, then detonating again can be a great tool for off-screening targets, which is not a practice generally associated with mine builds, no?

The build plays somewhat surprisingly like Summon Raging Spirits, in that you move to a spot, put down your totem and orb of zappy usefulness, then just stand there dumping mines at your feet as they fly off and kill things.

As for defenses, while the base life is lower than my usual target, Mind over Matter puts the effective life pool well into the comfy zone. Should you like the total increased life % can be pushed over 200%, but I honestly have not felt the need.
This build can soak a big hit and live, and takes rapid fire spells like incinerate of Dominoodles lightning hose better than any of my other characters, but its not a tank. There is no leeching on the mine train, armor and ES are halved thanks to acrobatics, but at least we get a smattering of evasion.
Survival against big stuff becomes a positional game, don't get hit before you have recovered from the last beating. Fortunately that style of evasive play works very well for a drop-and-pop miner.

Keep two detonate mines set, one for your totem and one for the innate skill. With Orb and Totem up, melee enemies are a joke, and only long range rogue exiles, Perandus guardians and other dangerous ranged enemies can become problematic, but fortunately for us our mines don't actually need line of sight to the target, so we can take cover, drop and detonate without the need to exposes ourselves too much. And if they are too far away from the initial detonation, the extra mine detonation on Tremor Rod comes in handy to leapfrog our mines to their target.

The one awkward thing about this build is that to really deal heavy damage we need to spend time dropping both our orb and our totem. We cast pretty quick due to incidental passives, but we still need to do the casting.
Fortunately, this is where Tremor Rod's second detonation comes in really handy. Whenever we have to go fast, whether we're clearing weak monsters or fighting an especially dangerous boss, drop a mine or nine, run, detonate, run, detonate again, keep running, repeat the cycle.
In effect its like "ripple firing" a group of mines, and while it takes a little getting used to, it really speeds up clear speeds.

Totem plus Orb is where the damage is, and finding the balance of when to drop and detonate manually vs when to set up shop with a totem and orb is something that is going to vary by every individual players taste.
Regardless, get used to resummoning the totem, because its not just for detonating mines, it also makes a fantastic form of bait, there are times when the right totem in the right place keeps a big nasty out of your face.

Notes on Totem Placement:
Spoiler
The relationship between the mines and their totem has a little bit of a learning curve.

First off, the spell totems detection radius and the mine's detection radii are different, and completely separate.
This means that if you have mines on the other side of the map, and a detonate mines totem right next to you, if a monster walks over the mines, nothing happens.
If a monster wanders into the detection radius of the totem, the mines on the opposite end of the map go off.

When the mines go off, they will check their own detection radius to see if they can see any targets. What the totem can or cannot see makes zero difference to the mines. If a mine can detect a target within its radius, it will warp towards that target. If that mine cannot see a target, it will warp in a random direction.

It is very important to note that in this build, the mines detection radius is actually larger than the totems detection radius. This is why the mine detonation radius passives between Clever Construction and High Explosives are important, they increase the range your mines seek out targets. A mine dropped at your feet can target pretty much the entire screen, including a fair amount that is off screen.

Continuing the example from earlier, lets say you have a totem on the other side of the map, surrounded by monsters, and you have a pile of mines at your feet. The totem will be hammering the detonate mines button, and the mines will go off. If there are no enemies where you are you can just stand there and dump mines watching them go off in completely random directions.

So what does this all mean?
You need to have your totem somewhere in the vicinity of the thing or things you want to kill. Your want to have your mine targeting radius also in range of that thing you want dead. Your mine targeting radius is larger than your totem targeting radius, so you can be farther away from the target than your totem is.

What all this boils down to:
For dangerous targets, put your totem between you and your target.
For safer targets, as long as your totem can see a monster, your mines will go off. So get the totem close and be aggressive to utilize both halves of the warp.


How much mine could a Lightning Warp mine, if a Lightning Warp could mine mines?
Math
Spoiler

Frustrated with what seemed like a total lack of reliable information on mine laying speed, I grabbed a spare character on Standard, carefully cleared and reset its skill tree, and proceeded to test out what the base mine laying speed really is. And after careful planning and spending more time than I would like staring at a stopwatch, I can state conclusively:

The base mine laying speed in Path of Exile is 0.5 seconds.

Hooray! This meant I could finally figure out what my mine DPS actually was. And those numbers were bigger than I thought.
In a 4link with garbage gear including the Goldrim I cleared Normal in, I was doing 20k DPS, without Minefield. With a 5link running Wrath in an Essence Worm I could maintain 86k dps, and then I made a spreadsheet on how to calculate and optimize. I'm now sitting at 405,827k DPS with a +3 6l staff and room for improvement, potentially all the way up to 810k dps.

And now, you can have that spreadsheet too, if you want:

Spoiler
http://www.mediafire.com/download/pev3uas6kzm23pw/Mine_DPS_Distributable_ver_101.zip

Notes on usage:
This is an OpenOffice document, its probably compatible with whatever you have, but I cannot make any guarantees.

There are 13 pages, but only 4 of them matter, and only 3 of those need editing.
The three pages of input are Gems, Equipment, and Passive Tree, all marked blue.
Obviously those are where you put in your gem levels and their quality, your relevant equipment stats, and bonuses from the skill tree.

Only edit the blue boxes. If the box isn't blue, don't touch it. Values are all either numeric or Boolean.

The final page of interest is Output, marked in orange, this is where final damage numbers gather together in one convenient spot. No need to edit anything here.

The values in the spreadsheet right now are the same values as the naked 6link dual curse from skill tree example shown below, for consistency's sake.


That said, have some numbers:

Here's an example of how the damage stacks up, previously I was using this DPS value in the thread title.
Spoiler
Controls:
Gear: Naked except for the weapon, a blank white armor piece with at 4+ sockets, and an essence loop containing a level 20 Wrath, functionally level 22
Gems: All level 20, 0 quality
Skill Tree: Level 89 path as listed in the skill tree section

White 6link Staff

Mine laying speed multiplier: 8.4
Spoiler
40% Increased Mine Laying Speed (Tree)
1.4*(2 mines)/(1 second) = 2.8 mines per second (0.357 seconds per mine)

+2 extra mines from minefield (Gem)
3*(1.4*(2 mines)/(1 second)) = 8.4 mines per second (0.119 seconds per mine)

Overall damage multiplier from number of mines laid per second: 8.4


Increased Damage Multiplier: 5.32
Spoiler
205% increased Mine Damage (Tree)
51% increased Spell Damage Multiplier (Tree)
126% Increased Elemental Damage (Tree)
50% Increased Area Damage (Tree)

Total Increased Damage: 432%
Overall damage multiplier from Increased Damage: 5.32


Critical Strike Multiplier: 1.0
Spoiler
Thanks to Elemental Overload this is irrelevant. Crit multiplier is 100%

Just in case you wanted to use crit rate logic yourself and didnt know how, here's how to calculate the overall increase in damage from crits:
(1-critrate)+(CritRate * CritMultiplier) = CritDamageMultiplier

So, using a 6% lightning warp a 150% case crit multiplier:
(1-0.06) + (0.06*1.5) = 1.03

An overall increase of 3% damage from crits. Since this build uses Elemental Overload, regardless of how high the crit rate is, the overall multiplier from crits will always be 1.


More/Less Multipliers: 5.565
Spoiler
Here's the gems, aura, and keystone passive, and their respective multipliers. All gems are level 20.
Remote Mine 1.49
Less Duration 1.29
Controlled Destruction 1.44
Minefield (Less damage portion only) 0.79
Elemental Focus 1.49

Elemental Overload 1.4
Wrath 1.22

Total More/Less Multipliers: 5.565


Pre-Resistance DPS
Spoiler
Level 20 Lightning Warp: 37-707 damage, average 372

Total Multipliers from Increases, Crits, and Mores:
5.32 * 1 * 5.65 = 29.6058

Damage per Mine:
1,095-20,931 with an average of 11013 damage per mine.

Pre-Resistance DPS:
11,013 damage per mine multiplied by an attack speed multiplier of 8.4:
92,509 damage per second


Resistances and Penetration: 2.0
Spoiler
Lightning Resist of Target: 0%
Penetration:
10% (Tree)
48% (Conductivity, 10% increased curse effect)
42% (Elemental Weakness, 10% increased curse effect)

Total penetration: 100%
Penetration Multiplier: 2


Single Hit DPS Value: 185,018

DPS in the sweet spot: 370,036

That's 370k DPS, holding a normal quality blank white staff, completely naked except for maybe some statless shoes and a worm on your finger.
Comparatively, a Tremor Rod weighs in at about 240k (480k) DPS, and a +2 thunder skills staff comes even with a Tremor rod, so long as the staff has at least +22% increased lightning or spell damage.

I wasn't kidding when I said this build was a DPS monster.


Theoretical damage numbers are all well and good, but what is realistic?
This is where the numbers in the title come from.
Spoiler
Entry level 4link
Spoiler
Using the level 69 passive tree from above.

4linked Tremor Rod (60/60)

All gems at level 18, 0 quality

Lightning Warp
Remote Mine (10, Tremor Rod)
Minefield
Less Duration
Elemental Focus

No offensive curse

No other notable gear

Tooltip Damage 299-5,762 average 3,030.5

Mines per second 10.68

Pre-Penetration DPS 32,365.74 (64,731.48 both hits)

Final DPS 35,602.31 (71,204.63 both hits)

That's right, 35k to 71k damage, depending on positioning.
In a 4-link.


Mid Level 5link, with Shock
Spoiler
Using the level 83 passive tree from above.

5linked Tremor Rod (60/60)

All gems at level 20, 0 quality

Lightning Warp
Remote Mine (10, Tremor Rod)
Minefield
Less Duration
Controlled Destruction
Trap & Mine Damage

Conductivity
Wrath (On Essence Worm)

Carcass Jack, no other notable gear

Tooltip Damage 703-13,442 average 7,072.5

Mines per second 11.4

Pre-Penetration DPS 80,626.5 (161,253 both hits)

Final DPS 124,164.81 (248,329.62 both hits)

Elemental Focus has been cut to allow Shock, these numbers do not include increased damage from shock. Lightning Penetration is not needed with Conductivity in play.


High Level 6link, with Shock
Spoiler
Using the level 89 passive tree from above, includes extra curse and curse potency.

6linked Tremor Rod (60/60)

All gems at level 20, 20 quality

Lightning Warp
Remote Mine (10, Tremor Rod)
Minefield
Less Duration
Controlled Destruction
Trap & Mine Damage
Added Lightning Damage (Actually beats L3 Empower, shockingly)

Conductivity
Elemental Weakness
Wrath (On Essence Worm)

Carcass Jack, no other notable gear

Tooltip Damage 938-18,201 average 9,569.5

Mines per second 12

Pre-Penetration DPS 114,834 (229,668 both hits)

Final DPS 245,744.76 (491,489.52 both hits)

As before, Elemental Focus has been cut to allow Shock, these numbers do not include increased damage from shock. Lightning Penetration is not needed with both curses in play.


High Level 6link, Shockless
Spoiler
Using the level 89 passive tree from above, includes extra curse and curse potency.

6linked Tremor Rod (60/60)

All gems at level 20, 20 quality

Lightning Warp
Remote Mine (10, Tremor Rod)
Minefield
Less Duration
Controlled Destruction
Trap & Mine Damage
Elemental Focus

Conductivity
Elemental Weakness
Wrath (On Essence Worm)

Carcass Jack, no other notable gear

Tooltip Damage 1,100-21,024 average 11,062

Mines per second 12

Pre-Penetration DPS 132,744 (265,488 both hits)

Final DPS 284,072.16 (568,144.32 both hits)

Elemental Focus is back in, generating the biggest on-paper numbers, at the cost of Shock. Lightning Penetration is not needed with both curses in play.


Going Full Retard:
Spoiler
Using the level 90 passive tree from above, plus extra curse and curse potency from Whispers of doom.

6linked rare staff with +2 Lightning skills, +1 all skills, and 60% increased spell damage.

All gems at level 21, 20 quality, except for level 4 corrupted Empower.

Lightning Warp
Remote Mine
Minefield
Less Duration
Controlled Destruction
Elemental Focus

Conductivity
Elemental Weakness
Wrath (On Essence Worm)

Carcass Jack, no other notable gear

Tooltip Damage 3,026-57,385 average 30,205.5

Mines per second 9

Pre-Penetration DPS 271,849.50 (543,699 both hits)

Final DPS 592,631.91 (1,185,263.82 both hits)

You want to see stupid huge numbers? There they are. And that's with a grand total of 72% increased spell damage in gear, it can go higher.


You said Mind over Matter was up to a 43% HP boost, I only see 30%!
Spoiler
Mind over Matter is better than it looks.

What most people think of when they consider this keystone, is that to get the most out of MoM, you need your mana pool to be 30% of your life pool. This is wrong.

Lets say Player has 1000 HP, and 300 MP.
Max MP is 30% of max HP.

Player takes 1000 damage, 300 of which goes to mana, 700 goes to life, player has 300 HP and 0 MP left.

Working at max efficiency? No! MP is empty and theres 299 HP left that MP could have protected!

"
For mana to not run out before life the unreserved mana should be at least 43% of unreserved life, granted that 30% of damage is taken from Mana before Life.

The math for how it works is here: http://pathofexile.gamepedia.com/Mind_Over_Matter

I made this mistake with Mind over Matter, hopefully you won't have to!


Video!
Spoiler
Videos are finally a thing!

Infernal King, Abyss map
Spoiler
T15 Abyss map boss, Infernal King
https://youtu.be/2bn3DbIgPHU

Crit modded big angry T15 Kaom.

This was my first ever T15 map attempt, and as such my play was both overcautious and a bit sloppy. No deaths, despite Kaom and crit modded spike fiends best efforts. The overcautious nature of the attempt means that I cut out the level itself and only uploaded the boss, because the rest of the map would be boring to watch.

I consider this run to be proof that this build is viable for any map, with any map mods.


Palace Map, level 81
Spoiler
T14 Palace map, +80% enemy Lightning Resistance.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=44_YoN7GCdo

Map has desecrated ground, and other irrelevant effects.

This is me at level 90, and this is the first time I've run this map on this character. Gear is at the top of page 3. The Lightning resist makes everything slower, but I have yet to meet a map mod I couldn't play.

I scaled down the bitrate and resolution of the video in order to keep framerate smooth, and I'm satisfied with the result, though I am open to tips on video recording/encoding optimization using Open Broadcasting Software.


Questions for GGG
Spoiler
To my knowledge, there has been no official GGG statement as to what base mine placement speed, or mine activation time are.

I've done my own testing, using a stopwatch, blood magic, Vaal Pact, and a boatload of max HP to discover a base mine laying speed of 0.5 seconds, but I would still like official confirmation if possible.

Mine activation time, on the other hand, I'm still in the dark on. I'm pretty sure its between 0.1 and 0.2 seconds, and I'm leaning towards 0.12 seconds, but I really have no idea as the upper limits require an Acceleration shrine to test with, and I'm not certain that an Acceleration shrine is 100% more mine-laying speed, either.

So, could someone in the know make an official statement on base mine placement speed and mine activation time?
Last edited by pieceofsoap on Mar 2, 2017, 6:13:51 PM
Last bumped on Oct 12, 2017, 8:48:22 AM
This sounds pretty cool! Would love to see a video of it in action!
I have teamed up and seen the build in action. It is really amusing to watch, and very effective. I approve.
Looks like fun, how would you suggest leveling before 45-50 or so when you can get this online?
Now that spell levels have been re-adjusted, the key skills to make this build work, Lightning Warp, Remote Mine, Spell Totem, and Detonate mines are all level 8-10, so if you wanted you could level with this build. If you have a 3link blue socket, you could even run Minefield.

Realistically though, the mana cost for doing that would be astronomical before completing Normal Labyrinth and gaining access to Walk the Aether, and mine laying will be slow before Tremor Rod, the mine laying speed passives only add up later down the road.

So, you can do what I did at the beginning of the league, slap on clarity and level with Fire Trap and Fire Nova Mine. If you have not played a mine build before, I do recommend leveling with a mine skill like FNM just for familiarization purposes, even if FNM will not actively hunt down targets like Lightning Warp mines will.

/edit Added this post to a new "Notes on Leveling" portion of the skill tree section.
Last edited by pieceofsoap on Mar 15, 2016, 6:07:59 PM
Others thought I was insane for even considering LW mines, but I'm glad to see someone making it viable. Do you find yourself replacing mines that hasn't yet detonated a 2nd time as you reposition? Keep up the good work.
"
Its -35% less mine damage modifier Is offset by its +39% more mine damage from its innate remote mine property, giving us an effective total of 4% more mine damage.

Unfortunately this is not how less and more interact. You get 0.65 x 1.39 = 0.9035, so a little more than 90% of the base damage.

I played mines in the past two leagues and now again, this time without Tremor Rod. Do you feel the staff is worth it? While the 7L is nice, the remaining stats of the staff are not to impressive and I'm not sure if the 2nd detonation is even usefull when spamming LW mines. Afaik they have to finish their first warp, re-arm, and then the spell totem will detonate again. However if you continue placing mines during that time, you probably will reach the mine-limit of 9 out at once, which makes new ones replace the oldest ones. :\

€dit: Just tested it, the 2nd detonation will never happen unless you stop laying mines. Otherwise new ones will replace the old ones.
Last edited by Lord_of_Error on Mar 15, 2016, 10:57:46 PM
"
Others thought I was insane for even considering LW mines, but I'm glad to see someone making it viable. Do you find yourself replacing mines that hasn't yet detonated a 2nd time as you reposition? Keep up the good work.


When my totem is down, or outside of targeting radius, I absolutely find myself replacing undetonated mines as I reposition and/or run for my life from something horrible. Mines can be manually detonated as you run, and Volatile Mines speeds up the process, but when the fecal matter hits the turbine its common that I don't stop to detonate. Also, with Minefield I hit maximum active mines in 3 drops, or 0.75 seconds, so its really easy to drop extra when detonating manually. The utility of the 2nd detonation really is mostly for leapfrogging to long range targets and cleanup on the one target wandering out of range after everything else was vaporized.


"
Lord_of_Error wrote:
"
Its -35% less mine damage modifier Is offset by its +39% more mine damage from its innate remote mine property, giving us an effective total of 4% more mine damage.

Unfortunately this is not how less and more interact. You get 0.65 x 1.39 = 0.9035, so a little more than 90% of the base damage.


You are correct, I fudged the math for that segment on Tremor Rod and I should not have. I have fixed the error. Fortunately, this doesn't affect any of the DPS math I've been doing or posting, as I made a spreadsheet in which the 35% less and 39% more modifiers on Tremor Rod are counted separately, as they should be. Unfortunately for me, I did not look at those two as Tremor Rod components, and put them in with all the other more and less multipliers, and so I didn't notice that the 4% more I was talking about was in fact a 10% less, even in my own math.

Is Tremor Rod worth it? For level 45-80ish, absolutely. You are right, the second detonation doesn't do anything for sustained DPS, its just a convenient utility. Mines can be dumped far faster than the second setup can complete, so the whole second detonation stage dies before it can go off. I don't count the second detonation in damage numbers at all. So, with a ~10% less damage multiplier and a second detonation that doesn't add to DPS at all, what about Tremor Rod makes it absolutely worth it? The mine laying speed. The max mine laying speed in the skill tree is 40% (without jewels) and the staff gets up to 60% laying speed, and 21% of the mine laying speed nodes on the tree are in a cluster that probably shouldn't be taken before 75, if not 80. Mine laying speed is a dual purpose, first is obviously damage, second is shortening the time spent in the animation, so you can get back to running away from something horrible that's trying to end you. Tremor rod does both of those better than any other item in the game, and does it dirt cheap.

So, is Tremor Rod worth it compared to other staves? Until you finish out the mine laying speed nodes in the skill tree, yes, but not by as much as people hype it. Once the mine speed nodes are taken, then other staves start getting competitive. I need to do the math to find out what set of stats are the minimum stats needed for a rare to beat Tremor Rod, but I suspect that its in the range of a good +2 skill staff, with a +3 staff being top-tier.

Is Tremor required? No. Is it top tier? No. But its the cheapest low-middle tier weapon available, with the best non-DPS utility factor.
Worth to note that quality on Remote Mine is 10% mine laying speed which you'll miss out on Tremor Rod, so it basically "only" gives 50% speed.

Still a very cool unique, and when using something that does cost mana the 2nd detonation can be very helpfull in managing mana costs. Hope we'll see it with its 3D art soon.
I am aware of the quality mod on Remote mine, and I already mentioned it in the guide.

I went ahead and put a section into the guide that shows how the damage multipliers add up, and how player can do 370k DPS while buck naked short of a 6link basic statless white staff, a single similarly statless piece of clothing, and an essence worm ring.

Is is just me, or is 370k dps insanely high?

Comparatively, a 6 link Tremor Rod in that setup will do 480k damage in the sweet spot.

The requirements for a rare to meet or exceed Tremor Rod also became a bit more clear. With that level 89 skill tree a +2 lightning skills staff only needs +20-25% increased spell damage to equal Tremor Rod, though it would require at least 60% spell damage and some additive damage for me to consider dropping the extra utility for more DPS.

I have yet to put a +3 skill staff with empower and corrupted level 21 gems into my spreadsheet, and I'm somewhat terrified of how much damage will come out. I would not be the slightest bit surprised if it surpasses 1 million DPS.

Finally, I would love to do a video, that just means researching video capture and editing software. Any suggestions? I prefer Open Source where possible.

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