[2.2 ELE] Atherakhia's BEGINNER FRIENDLY Arctic Breath Elementalist Witch

Hi there,

Thanks a lot for the guide. It inspired me to go for an arctic breather again and I'm having a lot of fun with it!!
I especially like your herald of ice setup!

There are quite a few details in the build that I've ended up making other choices on. I'll list them here, along with my reasoning. Not meant as criticism, just alternative takes on some concepts (some of it is about efficiency, but a lot is just playstyle preference).

1) I agree with Notneb on using Orb of Storms for crits and controlled destruction as high damage support. It's a massive boost in DPS.

2) For that purpose, I would somewhat rearrange gems. I suggest this setup for easy cursing:
orb of storms - herald of thunder - curse on hit - frostbite/ele weakness
It's only one link more than your current curse setup and the same amount of casting required (i.e. once casting orb of storms).

3) I find it hardly ever worth supporting the Golem with extra gems. I'd rather put it in a cast when damage taken setup to guarantee it's always up. Something like this:
CWDT - Ice Golem - Warlord's Mark/temp chains - cold snap/immortal call
This would also replace the 'panic button' for me (and not require casting), using some defensive curse and either cold snap for the insta freeze or IC in case you feel like running enduring cry (which I would suggest looking into on HC).

4) I'd look into one or two more defensive mechanics, either running arctic armor or taking mind over matter and getting some more mana and mana regen on the tree

5) I don't feel it's worth travelling all the way over to 'fingers of frost'. It basically only gives you a little bit of freeze chance and you already have PLENTY of that on the rest of the tree (not to mention taryn's, frostbite and ice bite), also at some point you need to wonder why you pick up those ascendancy notes if you already perma-freeze everything anyway ;) . The crit notes in witch seem pretty wasted. I'd look into other ways to keep your overload going (worst case orb of storms + increased critical strikes), outside of that they provide literally no benefit. Similarly, the 'Snowforged' cluster is half wasted on the build (as you have almost no fire damage).
Instead of these nodes, I'd consider getting the 'Devotion' life nodes in templar (also for pathing through the extra strength), pathing past 'Storm Weaver' in case you decide to go with herald of thunder and orb of storms and also picking up 'Purity of Flesh' on the way. and finally going into the Shadow starting area for all the high quality elemental damage and life nodes there.

Hope some of this helps! Most importantly: have fun!
Last edited by BlackestTea on Mar 28, 2016, 7:31:51 AM
I agree with Black on alot of what was said. Arctic armor and enduring cry are must haves!

One of the biggest problems with "freeze" or any status ailment is late game, red tier maps, and bosses as they become immune to it. So if you are using freeze as your primary source of defense then your going to be in trouble. This is why I choose the higher cast speed and higher dmg route rather than the permanent freeze route. I would rather go permanent freeze because nothing is more satisfying than locking down a whole screen then hear that BEAUtiful shatter sound. But there is just to many cases where immune ruins this.

I am currently working on a whole new setup for AB and using a scion with the ascendancy. The new setup would not be cheap. But, I think it would push it to the next lvl. It will require a Shavs and use the berserker ascendancy (have not decided on a second one yet). It's also a low life setup which would have a curse w/ blasphemy and clarity linked with blood magic. Disc and HoI would be on mana. This gives us low life and the pain attunement node for alot MORE dmg. Obviously ghost reaver is needed.
Any who, I will try and put something together once I get it all worked out. Right now it's a bunch of jumbled thoughts in my head.

I just love hearing others thoughts btw...this is great stuff from all!!!
Didn't get my hands on a red map yet, though running up to tier 9 is absolutely no problem.
I probably won't go for orb of storms or herald of thunder, those just aren't really my taste for the build's theme, though I see how this would probably increase damage.

Like the title says, it is more geared towards beginners, giving them something rather easy to play.

btw, just hit 87 today and got my Merc Ascendency and I still think I might make it to 90 until the league ends.
Good to hear the build is holding up! If you skip Orb of Storms, your best choice for a 6L is probably Cold Pen
I'm still very much in the levelling process, would be curious how the merc ascendancy nodes feel like. Did you go with the Golem ones? Does it feel like a significant DPS boost? I'm considering going with Paragon of Calamity for a bit of DPS, but mostly for the added survival, especially against reflect.

Very curious what your high budget scion version will look like. It sounds pretty glass cannon-y from the Berserker passive at first. I'm excited to see someone take arctic breath to the next level!

poeurl.com/AXq This is the tree I've theorycrafted as my current endgame goal. I'd be dual cursing with HoT (ele weakness and frostbite) for offense and CWDT - Warlord's Mark - Temp Chains for defense
I've played around with Orb of Storms a bit and feel like I need to have it linked to increased critical hits, then it procs overload pretty consistently and also provides some nice shock.
Still not sure if i'll have enough mana and mana regen for Mind over Matter, will have to try that out (else I'll just go with Arctic Armor)
I'm happy about any feedback you guys have.
Last edited by BlackestTea on Mar 28, 2016, 5:13:51 PM
I think the map situation begins at 10+. Like Black said if you ever get a 6 link cold pen would do you the most. AB can do so much for so little, it is a very "interesting" play style but it's power is lost to many people. I wish it wasn't ground based but heh, it is what it is. A very solid build can get you into maps for under 1 ex. Only Taryns is really required and even then, very early maps can be done with high dmg wands.

My orb of storms has Inc aoe and crit chance linked to it. I know your using it to curse so this setup would have to be a 6 link chest for you. I am currently not using any curses, more of self stubbornness than anything but I mainly only play in a group so I let the rest curse.
The Scion is going to be a hybrid, so energy shield stack is a must, minimum 8k shield with disc. Life is purely to blood magic 2 more auras. Berserker gives it dmg leach without a socket, and combined with ghost reaver it leaches shield instead of HP. The second ascendancy is still very unknown, have ideas but not 100%

Oh, I may have missed it or forgotten but frost wall is amazing to shotgun single target (although my party hates it lol)

the build looks nice, do you also have a map clear video for this build?
makes all sense, gonna be curious how it turns out. Keep us posted!

I've found that Herald of Thunder alone curses plenty (running that in a 4-link). I have orb of storms in a two-link with increased crits to proc elemental overload and keep HoT going. It feels very smooth currently (though i would add inc. AOE if I ever end up with extra socket).

Frost Wall IS amazing (was mentioned in the guide as well I think), almost necessary for some bosses it feels like. I've also found it really nice for splitting up Perandus packs to make them less likely to swarm me.
I am having some trouble getting links to work this evening so I am sorry for the ugly block but this is the current planned tree for Scion, Low life, ES, non crit, Arctic Breath.


One thing I have learned with the super cast speed AB setup is mana regen is a must, and alot of it. All that mana regen is with clarity even just to keep up. Not much of a pool to cast with due to aura reservations either.

Please let me know what yall think of the tree for Scion. Its an on going work in progress and would love some input. I keep bouncing back and forth on multiple nodes but this seems like the best overall so far.

I shouldn't read these at work for some reason I thought you were cursing with Orb of storms???, HoL makes sense. Sorry for the confusion. Frost wall works great to disengage and reposition too.
Hey guys,
First of all, thank you all! Never thought my little build might actually get such an active discussion!

Maps of tier 10+ might be what the pros run for farming and the highest xp gain but again, it's more aimed at newbies. You'll easily get past 80 with this build and collect a nice handful of currency to maybe make a more expensive build on your next go.

@Notneb encore
Speaking about expensive, Berek's Grip is pretty much what rid me of all my Mana issues. I don't exactly know how often I shock things with Elemental Conflux but obviously it seems enough.

No video yet so.......

If anybody can help me about getting a map clearing video, I'd highly appreciate the help. Never did that before so I got absolutely NO idea XD
Nice write-up!

Ive been away from POE for a while and Im using a lot of things from your thread to do an arctic breath build.

Im level 70 right now in HC and im a bit nervous to transition to a staff from the shield and wand combo. How squishy did you get going to the staff?
IGN: Arstan___(3 underscore)Whitebeard

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