[2.5] Hit Once, Hit Hard - Shield Charge Facebreakers - [Cheap, SC]

Hey PoE,

My build's philosophy is Hit Once, Hit Hard. I forgo all investment into attack speed, and look for high damage hits on the charge. Everything else dies from the Herald of Ash proliferate.

This build is future-proof barring some major changes to the mechanics involved. It's already survived the prolif and AoE nerfs and still works fine.
Whelp, i spoke too soon. 3.0 somehow managed to destroy the build by changing HoA from an ignite to a burn. I now consider this build to finally be dead.

GGG has finally reworked Shield Charge. I've been running this shield charge build for several patches/temp leagues, and have been having tons of fun. Now shield charge is even better.

The new shield charge has a higher damage at a short charge range, damages the enemies you used to shove out of the way, and has a huge AoE at the end of the charge.

If you're looking for a fun way to level and play endgame content, I would highly suggest starting a facebreaker shield charge build.

Super Cheap! (Just need facebreaker + abyssus)
No need to level into the build. Can be started early
Can be run on a 4link
Good clear speed (You clear while moving)
Incredibly high damage (No need to invest into attack speed)
Can clear all map mods
Good vs. Reflect (Huh? I'll explain below)

Low single target
Accuracy does not increase damage
No weapon, so less usable gem slots
lots of uniques (most are optional)

General Information

Facebreakers is a unique gloves that increase your character's physical damage from 600-800% (up to 1000% legacy). Facebreaker builds are an excellent leveling item, and excel at doing massive amounts of damage from Normal Difficulty to Mid-level Maps.

Shield charge is a movement skill that charges at a target or location, pushing and dealing damage to targets in the way. At the end of the charge, additional damage is dealt to targets in a large cone AoE

Attack speed increases the charge speed.

The rework of Shield Charge has changed it from a single targeted attack to an AoE skill. This means that it can be affected by increased AoE and Conc effect. I currently run the skill as a 4-link. So i do not use either. Instead, i use the Martial Artistry, Unique Jewel.

Additionally, because most passive nodes that affect Facebreakers are attached to shield nodes, i can use trigger gems.


Right.... I said i'd talk about this.

This build is quite good against reflect. That is because it is essentially two builds: Infernal Blow, and Shield Charge.

For elemental reflect, use shield charge as your main skill. The majority of the damage is physical, and most enemies will die from the Herals of Ash prolif, which does not reflect.

For physical reflect, use Infernal blow, as the majority of infernal blow damage is elemental.

Gem Setup

Shield Charge - Added Fire - Melee Phys - Blood Magic - (Infernal Blow) - (Concentrated Effect or Fire Pen)
Herald Of Ash - Increased Area of Effect - Increased Burning Damage - Elemental Proliferation
Cast when Damage Taken - Immortal Call - Increased Duration - (Warlords Mark?)
Riposte - Reckoning - Melee Phys - (Added Fire or Endurance Charge on Melee Stun)
Grace or Hatred (have one in shield and one in weapon swap. switch depending on the zone.)
Blood Magic - Blood Rage

Skill Tree

My skilltree is a typical facebreaker tree with a focus on Block chance and and investment into fire damage.
The skilltree's url had to be shortened, because they were WAY too long

60 points:

80 points:

100 points:



Normal - Kill all or Help Oak
Cruel - Help Oak
Merciless - Help oak

Some notable nodes on the skilltree are:

Jewel Socket for Martial Artistry(AoE helps alot)

Iron Reflexes - I switch from Hatred to the Grace Aura on high damage maps.

Aura Nodes - I take the 3 aura nodes near sovereignty so that i can link my Herald of Ash with Prolif, Burning Damage, and increased AoE for 100% mana reservation.

When ascendency was first introduced, I played as a chieftain, for the extra fire damage. However, i noticed that it didn't substantially increase my damage. Therefore, i would recommend going Juggernaut for this build.

You can also run this build as a duelist. For that, i would go champion and grab the Fortify and inspiration


You gear this build the same as you do with every facebreaker character. Get facebreakers, and then grab abyssus and flat damage jewelry. A full set that can get you to mid-level maps should cost 25c max. (This cost estimate was in 2.3, that my have changed since)

If you want more damage, get better jewelry. Or you could get more uniques with flat damage. However, if you do this, your character will have more difficulty gaining life, armour, and resists.

My Character:

My current character can be seen here: HeralOfFist

The gear i am currently using are:

Tooltips and Defenses

Shield Charge Tooltip:

Infernal Blow Tooltip:

Riposte Tooltip:

Reckoning Tooltip:

Character Defenses:


Gorge Speedrun (3:20) -https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g0aa_ercRkk
Sound dies ~1min into video due to new sound engine. New one coming soon!

Waterways Map - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dDSOszjMpEA
I died twice. Once to crit totem + vultures from a strongbox. The other to the boss.

Shrine Map - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7CrttlpRQm4
Excellent representation of the build in high-end maps.

While watching these video, please remember that I do not have GG rares. My most valuable rare on the character would sell for 10-15c

If you have some questions regarding this build, send me a private message and i'll respond as soon as i see it. (I take breaks from this game every so often, so the response might take awhile. Sorry!)
Last edited by Kinertia on Aug 30, 2017, 7:11:39 PM
Last bumped on Aug 30, 2017, 7:09:39 PM

Added Bandit Rewards
Changed Shield links to run Blood Rage
Added leveling skilltrees (60/80/100 points)

Updated skilltrees for 2.5 (dropped some damage and armor nodes for more endurance charges and life)
Last edited by Kinertia on Mar 12, 2017, 11:06:32 PM
Saved for future use
Not a speedrun if you left more than 7 remaining.
Hey, thanks for putting this together!
Jul 27, 2011 - Sept 30, 2018.
Hey nice guide, i am doing it a little diferent i will run a slayer and use ancestral warchief for single target.
Not a speedrun if you left more than 7 remaining.

It is not 'technically' a speedrun, as monsters were left behind. However, in essence, it is still a speedclear.

I went back and cleared the map. Most monsters left alive were beyond mobs and crabs that were hiding underground.
You found too hard to be capped with the resistances with all the unics you use?
Last edited by claydbp on Jun 5, 2016, 9:52:48 PM
You found too hard to be capped with the resistances with all the unics you use?

It is semi-difficult to resist cap. Right now I'm resist capped w/ endurance charges, but i could easily pick up a node on the skilltree to cap myself.
Looks fun. It does not seem the shield choice matters much which is nice.
Something helpful for people leveling into the build might be a progressive skill tree.

Report Forum Post

Report Account:

Report Type

Additional Info