[3.0] The Azure Knight (Flurry/Frost Blades/Multi-class/Budget/Crit/Life/Conversion) Shaper/Uber

Hi, and welcome to another Blade Flurry/Frost Blades Witch build by me.

I've written the guide with an Occultist in mind, but the build can be played by many different classes/ascendancies - links to other ascendancy threads are in the Stats section.

Build is broken down into 2 different gear/gem setup, Cold and Light/Cold based, full explanation of differences included.

There is also a small Frost Blades gem section, if anyone prefers it to Blade Flurry. Vast majority of the guide applies to Frost Blades option as well.

Pros and Cons:
- Fun, fast paced build
- Non-meta, hipster build
- Can beat 2.6 HoWA Blade Flurry dps, while being much, much cheaper
- Fast clearspeed, and an amazing clearspeed with Frost Blades
- Cheap (6L not included)
- Can be used as a league starter
- Can run Elemental Reflect maps with a few gear/gem changes
- Flexible, can be played as any class in the game, each with different pros and cons

- Some map mods can range from annoying (no mana regen), hard (vulnerability), to very hard/undoable (no leech)
- It's not a 15k ES or 8k life build, so cannot facetank everything and you need to dodge telegraphed attacks
- Not recommended for HC due to low life values and use of Abyssus (Altough, if you choose Starkonja/Grace/Shield it might be HC viable).

My Laptop is ancient so please at least try to ignore freezes/lag and sometimes low quality in general. Don't judge the build based on the videos performance/my performace/fps, just the build's performance.
Still, apologies for the dreadful videos, and hope you can see past the quality.

3.0 videos:

End game with 297 dps claw (check second post for my gear and pastebin):
Phoenix run.
Chimera run.

Leveling as SSF in 3.0 Beta:
Arakaali, Solaris/Lunaris, Jungle Valley at level 59 - Underleveled, undergeared (uncapped res, using same weapon for the last 25+ levels), but still managed to do a blue map with just one silly death.
Innocence, Kitava, Abberath, Maligaro - Innocence clip is a second attempt at "deathless video", first one was a nightmare since I didn't know the mechanics and died like 5 times ;D
Dominus, Piety, Malachai

2.6 videos:
Level 90, mostly 20/20 but also a few 21/20 and 20/23 gems:
Probably won't get/buy any upgrades in terms of gems/equipment in this league, so here are the "build finished" videos:
Shaper run.
Hydra run.
Chimera run.
Minotaur run.

Level 90, 20/20 and some 18/20 gems:
Uber Atziri - 2 deaths, could easily be fixed with better gameplay. Was quite easy since the last time I tried it in Breach league (different build).
Beacon T13 with Elemental Reflect mod - tips on dealing with Elemental Reflect in the video's description.
Chayula 0:32 timer third try
Chayula 0:17 timer second try ever - gear changes explained in Boss section.
T14 Springs, Frost Blades edition, ToA dual wield - Extra damage as fire, Monster skills chain +2 times, Poison on hit, Onslaught, Unique Boss increased damage/attack/cast speed.
Fixed dual wielding fail - dual wielding Touch of Anquish. Also, running with Enfeeble on Blasphemy, not Elemental Weakness, meaning it can be cleared way faster. Also, lag as usual.
T13 Beacon, Frost Blades edition, "fake dual wielding" fail - -11% max resists, Extra damage as cold, Monster skills chain +2 times, Players have less area of effect, Perandus, Beyond, Warbands. Gear and gem changes listed in "Frost Blades edition" section.
Also, forgot that fake dual wielding doesn't work with Frost Blades (played BF too long). Check video above for true Frost Blades performance.
Shaper - One death to lag. Changes since previous videos: new ring and amulet, rare claw, leveled up the gems - results in around 28% more damage according to Path of Building.

Level 88, 19/0, 12-15/20 and some 20/20 gems:
Fixed gem links, still have to redo the lab choices, missing Malediction means I cannot have Elemental Weakness and Enfeeble at the same time. Gone from Light/Cold to Cold setup.
T13 Gorge - 2 minute clear + boss run, pretty good after 2.6 AoE nerfs.
T15 Overgrown Ruin - Nemesis, Phys reflect, Additional projectiles, Less AoE, Tempest. Easy mods, done Chaos warband without problems with -60 chaos res.

Level 87-88, 19/0 gems:
Gems are almost ready to be reset for 1/20, CwDT curse setup isn't working atm (curses lvl too high), I haven't bothered to fit Vaal Lightning trap into the setup, and haven't redone my lab yet. However, here is an early preview of the character.
Normal Atziri in 4-link - Practically deathless, if it wasn't for massive lag spike during Oversoul fight, and me forgetting to swap to main weapon set (lol). Video is less laggy after first minute or so.
Chimera clear, no boss - Poison on hit, 105% dmg as cold, Increased monster accuracy, Unlucky dodge chance, Nemesis, Bloodlines.
Minotaur clear + boss - Enfeeble, 27% more monster life, 35% increased damage, 30% increased attack and cast speed, Nemesis, Players have less area of effect.

Leveling and gearing up:
"Witch start" passive tree allocation/leveling:
Example level ~30-35
At the beginning, you will most likely level with spells or traps, as Witch lacks good melee gems to start with. Unfortunately, the pathing we take lacks any meaningful bonuses and life at first. You can take spell damage nodes instead of claw nodes if you want to level with spells after level 30-40.
Around level 30, you can use Blade Flurry and reach a few first claw damage nodes. You can also level with Frost Blades, as it will allow you to better utilize Heralds/Weapon Elemental Damage/Elemental Focus etc. You can always stick to increasing your physical damage instead of elemental - all depends on your gear.
While this tree is the shortest/best way to reach the Claw nodes early, keep in mind that some of the points will have to be removed later for more efficiency.

Example level ~55-60
When you are able to reach Winter Spirit, and use Blade Flurry+Hatred, make sure you have Melee Physical Damage, Weapong Elemental Damage and Elemental Focus in your attack setup. Start using Elemental Weakness curse.
Take all nearby life nodes, unless you severily lack damage - in that case, get Heartseeker or Aspect of the Panther. Both provide good dps increase per point spent.

Example level ~75
Getting Constitution node and other nodes on your way there is very important at this point, you might not have enough damage yet to make use of Vaal Pact, so only after getting major life nodes start making your way to get it. I might be terribly wrong here, so you might want to test it yourself.

Leveling and gearing from 30s till maps:
Level 30 is when you can start leveling with Blade Flurry/Frost Blades.

1. Detailed leveling: (thanks iktose for this, written from Shadow POV, but applies to all ascendancies)
iktose wrote:
If that can be of help this is how I leveled my Assasin with this build:

2L: Frost Blades + Pierce (great for clear speed)
3L: Onslaught for even more clear speed or Added Cold for more DPS and/or bosses
4L: Added Fire
+ Riposte (drop it when you need the slot for something more useful)
+ whirling blades

Frost Blades + Pierce/Added Cold + Melee physical + Added Fire
+ Herald of Ice
+ Vaal Lightning Trap on bosses
+ Blood Rage (caution : use only if you have enough life leech)
Use this until you can get Blade Flurry in ACT3
Bandits : kill all (can change to Alira later if needed but I prefer the points)

Reach Winter Spirit in the skilltree. It's time to start using BF

Blade Flurry + Melee Physical + Elemental Damage + Elemental Focus
seems to be the best DPS combo according to PoB
Swap Herald of Ice with Hatred when possible
+ Ancestral Warchief
+ Enduring Cry
Add Fortify + Faster Attacks to Whirling Blades
+ Enfeeble (self cast at the moment)

+Ice Golem

nothing special here

Can start using Cast When Damage Taken + Immortal Call or Vortex or Frost Bomb
If enough mana pool and mana leech can even use Blasphemy + Enfeeble or Elem Weakness

Get ascendancy points as soon as possible. The order to spend points is already in the guide.

With correct stuff it should be easy to get level 90 quickly
I've written down my gem tips below as around the same time, so you can get a bigger picture (most of our gem suggestions are very similar). The leveling advise provided by iktose is already spot on, but below you will also find some gear tips.

2. Gems
Early on, Added Lightning, Added Cold etc. are better then supports like Faster Attacks or Elemental Damage with attacks, especially if you don't have much physical to elemental conversion. Uniques like Hrimsorrw or Moonbender's Wing (along the Winter Spirt passive notable) can change that. I wouldn't use these gems (Added Cold/Lightning) past early 40s, or only if you don't have a decent weapon and added flat damage is better then %more.
Blade Flurry - Melee Physical Damage - Added Cold/Lightning work great early.

As you level up and get better gear, phase out Added Cold/Lightning for Physical to Lightning support and Elemental Damage with Weapons.
Blade Flurry - Melee Physical Damage - Physical to Lightning - Elemental Damage with Weapons

If you reached Winter Spirit and have either Moonbender's axe or Hrimsorrow/Hrimburn gloves, drop Physical to Lightning support and get Elemental Focus instead.
Blade Flurry - Melee Physical Damage - Elemental Damage with Weapons - Elemental Focus

If you have a 5 link, use Increased AoE and swap it around with Concentrated Effect for bosses.
Blade Flurry - Melee Physical Damage - Elemental Damage with Weapons - Elemental Focus - Inc. AoE/Conc. Effect

3. Rare gear mod priorities
Try to cap your resistances and get life on gear. Ignore armour/es/evasion rolls almost completely. It is better to mitigate 75% of elemental damage then have a small chance to evade it but take it fully in your face. If you want evasion and armour while leveling, grab a Granite and Jade flasks instead.
Try to get some added physical damage on rings/amulet or other damage enhancing mod, like accuracy, but don't ever swap resistance rings for damage rings if you aren't capped.

4. Dual wielding Claws? DON'T!
Once you start using Blade Flurry, use only ONE claw and a mace/axe with increased % of elemental damage implicit. Your tooltip will be lower, but the tooltip is bugged this way. Your real dps will be higher with a claw/mace then with 2 identical claws. Try to get bonus accuracy or resistances on your offhand. Example that I used in early maps:

5. Weapon and other important upgrades
On a budget, use vendor recipe: Magic or Rare Rustic Sash + Claw of your choice + Blacksmiths Whetstone. It grants you a magic claw of the same type with 40-69% increased physical damage. Always use the best claw available to you to do this recipe (most of the time it will be the highest level requirement claw).
Rolls depend on rarity of the Sash and its item level. Augment it for a chance of attack speed % or other useful mods.

If you can spare a chaos or two, get it. Since 3.0 poison butchery it is really cheap, and I bough a decent rolled one for only a single Chaos on the first day, just a few hours into the league. If you didn't drop a Chaos orb or 2 yet, convert your Alterations or other currency. Later in the league, you will buy this for a single Alchemy orb.

This one can be expensive early, 3-5c at the first day or two of a new league, but get it eventually, it is definately worth it.
Belt of the Deceiver
Resists, life, damage. Great leveling belt. Price in early leagues is unknown to me as I found a nice rare and didn't need to buy this one.
Ornament of the East
By the time you start outleveling Mortem Morsu, you will have enough currency to buy this weapon. I got mine around level 50, and seen around 20% increase in dps over Mortem Morsu. Not a lot, but for its price (1 Chaos) it was definately worth it.

Since poison isn't in a great state, this amazing weapon is also really cheap. On the second day of the league I found out about this new unique, costing only 1 Chaos. Great critical strike chance, attack speed, physical damage, accuracy, and you can get situational extra chaos damage. All this for one Chaos orb. It is a truly great claw for its price, so get one with good stats and it will last you for a long time.

6. Masters
It is very beneficial to do master quests as you level up. Particularily Elreon for reistances/damage mods on jewelry and Haku for resistances on armour pieces.
Vagan is also a decent choice, as you might find a rare Claw that is missing added flat physical damage, and can beat uniques at your level in terms of dps. It is a gamble, but his missions are one of the quickest anyway, so do them when you can.

7. Auras/Mana reservation
Super early on, use both Herald of Thunder and Herald of Ice to level faster. Once you get Hatred, run it with either one of the Heralds.
Once you get Blasphemy and Elemental Weakness, use it along Hatred.


- Soul of Lunaris is a great pick, synergizes very good with our defenses. Best mapping choice imo, also increases your spell dodge chance to 35% with Perfect Form, and gives you a chance to avoid projectiles.
- Soul of Solaris is also decent, but not as good as Lunaris, even if Solaris bonus can be better in some rare cases.

- Gruthkul is great, as being close ranged character we are getting hit constantly. Additional slow also helps with survivability.
- Finally, Yugul helps us deal with reflect, if this is your main concern. Take it especially if you are playing Frost Blades version.

Bandits, Stats and Ascendancies
Stat explanation:
- "Fully buffed" means with curses, flasks, charges if they can be gained on hit (Frenzy charges if gained from Blood Rage or only on kill aren't calculated), Vaal Lightning Trap, Frost Bomb debuff.
- "Unbuffed" means with curses and charges if they can be gained on hit, but not on kill (so Frenzy from Blood Rage isn't calculated). No Lightning Trap.
- "Mapping dps" values are calculated against normal monsters, with flasks, with all charges on hit/and on kill, without Lightning Trap or Frost Bomb, and using AoE gem instead of Conc Effect.

Both "fully buffed" and "unbuffed" are calculated against Shaper/Guardian type of Boss, not vs normal monsters.

All stat calculations are based on Cold-centered setup, using same gear/level/passive tree (with small adjustments here and there to accomodate different mechanics).
Alira / Kill all
Recommended passive/gear setup:
Any, but probably Cold based if using Enfeeble (better synergy).
Without particular order:
- Profane Bloom: 10% more damage, also a great clear speed boost.
- Forbidden Power: Free Power charge generation - very important on a budget crit build.
- Malediction: A little bit of extra chaos damage. More importantly, allows us to use one more curse, either offensive (Assassin's Mark, Frostbite) or a defensive one (Enfeeble, Warlord's mark, Temporal Chains etc.).

Good dps.
Great clearspeed thanks to Profane Bloom.
Can use 2 curses.
Doesn't require Uber Lab.
If using Enfeeble, you are VERY unlikely to be critically hit and will take reduced damage from all sources, making it very tanky.
Dps took a hit in 3.0 patch.

2.3 million dps fully buffed (2.43 with second offensive curse).
0.74 million dps unbuffed (with Power charges).
1.62 million Mapping dps
6k HP (effective 6.4k against Enfeeble cursed bosses and 7.8k against Enfeeble cursed normal monsters).
43% Evasion / 70% against Blinded enemies.
55% Evasion with Enfeeble / 80% against Blinded enemies.
Alira / Kill all
Recommended passive/gear setup:
Cold based - great synergy with natural block from Offering. You will still get hit enough for your CwDT Offering to proc all the time. You could also potentially run Grace aura, reach Iron Reflexes and equip Aegis Aurora for OP tankiness.
- Mistress of Sacrifice: We pick it because of the Offering skills. Bone Offering for defense, Flesh Offering for offence, or Spirit Offering for added protection if your resists aren't capped (Elemental Weakness maps for example).
- Commander of Darkness: Free resists and some small damage boost.
- Spirit Eater: Additional damage increase. This will proc a lot if you have Offerings in CwDT setup.
- Beacon of Corruption: Only taken for the free chaos resists. Probably can synergize well with Scourge claws.

Can very easily achieve capped or overcapped resists.
Can be made VERY tanky with 52/34 block/spell block without any investments, or +70/75 with Rumi's and Stone of Lazhwar without making any changes to the tree.
Can be made OP tanky with Grace aura, Iron Reflexes and Aegis Aurora at the cost of a lot of damage.
Can do elemental reflect maps (damage can be blocked) with less sacrifices.
Very low dps.
Socket starved, hard to fit all gems without sacrifices if you want CwDT Offering skills - might need to drop some offensive or defensive setup because of it.

Stats: (as if you didn't need to drop any gems because of Offerings - meanining it will be lower in reality):
1.15 million dps fully buffed.
0.36 million dps unbuffed.
1.23 million Mapping dps.
6k HP.
52/32 block while dual wielding.
42% Evasion / 71% against Blinded enemies.
Assassin mini-guide thread.
Bandits, Ascendancy and Passive tree available in the link.

Great clearspeed, Assassin has easy time one shotting packs.
Great dps.
Free culling strike on low life enemies.
No defensive mechanics whatsoever, riskier then other ascendancies.
The higher your crit chance, the lower chance to gain Power charges, meaning you can hit bad rng roll, lose them, and have to rebuild the stacks again, lowering your dps.
Dps took a hit in 3.0 compared to other classes.

2.91 million dps fully buffed (3.4 million dps against bosses on low life).
0.97 million dps unbuffed, with Power charges (1.4 million dps against bosses on low life).
2.04 million Mapping dps (2.45 million dps against enemies on either full or low life).
6k HP.
41% Evasion / 70% against Blinded enemies.
Raider mini-guide thread.
Bandits, Ascendancy and Passive tree available in the link.

One of greatest dps values thanks to consistent Frenzy charges.
Great clearspeed thanks to movement/attack speed bonuses (Onslaught).
Very tanky - MORE chance to Evade is epic when you have Onslaught.
Can spec into Acrobatics for even more chance to evade.
Since every other class will also use Blood Rage for Frenzy charges (only Raider/Scion have Frenzy charges selected for "unbuffed dps" values). This is not a con, but worth pointing out.
Evasion chance drops to standard values if you don't kill recently (aka mostly against Shaper/Atziri and sometimes vs Hydra/Chimera).

3.29 million dps fully buffed. 2.78 million without Onslaught.
1.04 million dps unbuffed (with Frenzy charges). 0.88 million without Onslaught.
1.97 million Mapping dps.
6k HP.
55% melee, 51% projectile Evasion / 90% melee, 83% projectile Evasion against Blinded enemies (not including dodge and block). This is with Onslaught, without it, your evasion chance is similar to Occultist version.
Alira / Kill all
Recommended passive/gear setup:
- Veteran Bowyer: Penetration (more important against bosses), extra elemental damage, great dps boost.
- Nature's Boon: Small protection against elemental damage and great flask charge upkeep bonus.
- Master Alchemist: Immunity to elemental ailments means you can drop freeze flask and get "of Reflexes" mod for extra defense or "of Warding" to nullify map curse mods, which is amazing. On top of that, we get some extra damage.
- Nature's Adrenaline: Just a simple but strong attack speed bonus.

One of greatest dps values with flasks active (and why wouldn't they be?).
Great clearspeed thanks to movement/attack speed bonuses (Nature's Adrenaline).
Pathfinder is able to utilize "fully buffed dps" a lot more often then other classes.
Elemental Status immunity is a cherry on top of the cake.
Flask nerfs mean that Pathfinder lost quite a bit of power compared to 2.6.

2.62 million dps fully buffed.
0.69 million dps unbuffed.
1.81 million Mapping dps.
6k HP.
42% Evasion / 71% against Blinded enemies
Ascendant mini-guide thread.
Bandits, Ascendancy and Passive tree available in the link.

One of greatest dps values thanks to consistent Frenzy charges.
Great clearspeed thanks to movement/attack speed bonuses (Onslaught).
Built-in reflect protection.
Since every other class will also use Blood Rage for Frenzy charges (only Raider/Scion have Frenzy charges selected for "unbuffed dps" values), mapping speed is similar to other options (not really a con but worth pointing out).
If you want your second Golem in CwDT setup, you have to drop defensive Vortex gem.
Getting end-game tree might require some Orbs of Regret.

Using Raider/Elementalist version, Raider/Berserker can get higher dps values (around 10% more if you have been "Savagely hit" recently)
3.42 million dps fully buffed.
1.1 million dps unbuffed (with Frenzy charges).
2.02 million Mapping dps.
6.1k HP.
41% Evasion / 70% against Blinded enemies.
Berserker mini-guide thread.
Bandits, Ascendancy and Passive tree available in the link.

Biggest dps potential of all classes, period.
Great clearspeed thanks to high attack speed and damage.
Can leech back to full life even with weakest of hits.
Takes extra damage from all sources, slightly riskier then other ascendacies.
If you want to reach effective life pool of other ascendancies (6k), you need to reach at least 6.5k, meaning your dps will suffer (drop from 4.3 to 3.5 million dps).

4.35/3.72 million dps fully buffed with/without Cloaked in Savagery.
1.36/1.16 million dps unbuffed with/without Cloaked in Savagery.
3.03 million Mapping dps (2.61 if you haven't been hit/savege hit).
6.1k HP (5.6k effective).
38% Evasion / 69% against Blinded enemies.

Passive tree:
Example level 89 passive tree.


Basic gear:

- Touch of Anquish is an amazing claw. Good dps, crit chance and increased cold damage. However, it is expensive since Frost Blades becoming meta.

- The Wasp Nest is a great, and very cheap alternative. Dps-wise, it is not very far behind ToA (roughly 95% dps of it). Definately a better pick for your currency in 3.0.

- If looking for rare claws, prioritize critical strike chance (over 7.5%) and attack speed (at least 1.7 attacks per second). Attack speed is important since it benefits your movement speed through Whirling Blades as well.
Look for at least 300 pdps, and 7.5-8.69% critical strike chance. Any lower then that, and you will be better off getting well rolled Touch of Anquish or Wasp Nest, and just spending currency on upgrading rings/amulet/jewels etc.

- Singularity is the best off-hand weapon you can get on low budget. It provides you with more dps then another claw, even if tooltip doesn't reflect it. It's also amazingly cheap.

- Doon Cuebiyari is another decent off-hand choice, better then another claw while also providing you with some small life bonus thanks to high strength. Remember to put it in your left hand.

- Doryani's Catalyst is your BiS off-hand, however, they are very expensive at the start of every league.

- We are a crit build, so Abyssus boosts our damage quite a bit. Increased damage taken is not that much of a problem, we use flasks and Arctic Armour (eventually) to mitigate it.

- Starkonja's Head or even a rare helmet with life/resists/accuracy is a valid replacement if you are ok with sacrificing damage for survivability. If your damage is high, swapping to Starkonja for mapping will help dealing with reflect.

- Rare belt can easily beat any unique belt. Life and resists are your priority, with Elemental Damage with Weapons being a cherry on top of the pie.
Belt of the Deceiver is a good early game option that will carry you till maps. Don't fall into a trap of using it in the end game! If you sacrifice damage mods to top up your resistances, you will do LESS damage with this belt then with a good rare and damage mods on jewels.

- Rare boots are better then all uniques, since we already use many uniques without resistances.
Darktray Vectors could also be good on Raider/Scion versions, if you can handle losing resists and life.

- Jaws of Agony shield can help you whenever you need to quickly pre-build Power Charges for hard content and have some spare time (before enganging Guardians or Shaper, Atziri between phases etc.). Use Cluster Traps/Multiple Traps and some low mana costing trap for best effect.

Cold vs Light/Cold differences:
With Cold setup:
- You get hit less often, but physical damage hurts more.
- Reflect is more manageble thanks to higher evasion.
- Much easier time getting resists - Perfect Form's penalty of -30 isn't as bad as Lightning Coil's -60, plus, and Hrim gloves add another +20-30 cold resist. This alone means a difference of 50-60 resist you can save and don't have to get on gear/jewels.
- You could potentially transform it into high armour build with Iron Reflexes (22+k with Grace, 45+k with Jade Flask of Reflexes on top), but you have to sacrifice either life or damage to reach the node, and then some more damage/utility to fit Grace aura.
- You can drop Hatred in favour of Grace, and Abyssus in favour of Starkonja, greatly improving your survivability (less physical damage taken, more life, 40->61% evasion, 66% on low life) at the cost of damage (around 55% less damage without Hatred and Abyssus).

Light/Cold setup:
- You get better physical mitigation with Lightning Coil.
- Getting right colors on your chest is much easier with hybrid armour/evasion, as you only need 3 off-colors (instead of 4 in Cold setup).
- Higher trash mob dps, even when boss dps is almost the same (around 25-33% more).
- Much higher tooltip damage for warrioring - 72k damage, vs 57k in Cold setup (example from 2.6). The real dps is practically the same against bosses.
- Not as flexible with auras/buffs (unless you use Perfect Form like in Cold setup)

Cold based setup (main attack gems/gear):
Main Attack Gems
Blade Flurry + Weapon Elemental damage + Melee Physical + Elemental Focus + Increased AoE/Concentrated Effect + Cold Penetration
If on a 5 link, drop Cold Penetration.

Specific gear:

- The Perfect Form is BiS evasion armours for this build. You reach more evasion then with any other unique armour, but you also get some other sweet bonuses: free Phase Acrobatics and Arctic Armour. These 2 things will save your ass more often then extra life you'd have with other armours.
Other good armours include Carcass Jack, Belly of the Beast and even Atziri's Splendour.
Carcass for extra clearspeed and damage, Belly for extra life if you like higher life pool, and Atziri's for super easy coloring.
If you are on a budget, look for a rare, corrupted, 6 linked armour - it will get you to end game faster then a 4-5L unique.
Keep in mind that if you are not using Perfect Form, you lose Spell Dodge, Arctic Armour and quite a bit of Evasion. You could, however, use Bloodlust coupled with Chance to Bleed totem, or Damage on Full life gem due to easier coloring, but these are mostly for PoB e-penis enlargement then actual dps increase due to their clunkiness and unreliability.

- Hrimburn and Hrimsorrow convert the rest of our damage into cold, which means that we can use Cold Penetration gem to its full effect. This is very important, since otherwise it becomes really expensive to roll the right colors in your attack setup.
Cold resists also help negate downside of Perfect Form.

- Rare rings and amulet
Stats to look for (in order of importance):
Resists (more important with The Perfect Form)
Accuracy (important to get it on jewelry since we get no accuracy from gloves)
Physical damage to attacks/Crit multipier
Elemental damage with weapons/Cold damage
Attack speed
Mana regeneration

Light/Cold setup (main attack gems/gear):
Main Attack Gems:
Blade Flurry + Melee Physical + Weapon Elemental damage + Physical to Lightning + Increased AoE/Concentrated Effect + Elemental Focus
If on a 5 link, drop Elemental Focus.

Specific gear:

- Shaper's Touch is a cheap and great option for us. Massive dps boost thanks to accuracy from Intelligence and Melee Physical damage from Dexterity, great life boost, only disadvantage is lack of resists.
You can also use a rare gloves, if Shaper's are out of your reach. Make sure you prioritize life, accuracy and attack speed - any additional resistances are just a bonus.
If you can afford it, "Elemental Weakness on hit" corruption is BiS. You can also find a rare pair with life/resists/accuracy/attack speed. Prices on rare gear can vary from 5c to 15 exalted, depending on the seller and combination of mods/corruption.

- Lightning Coil is a great choice since we are wearing Abyssus. However, you can also use other unique armours like Belly of the Beast, or even a rare armour with high life roll and resists.
Another good choice would be some sick Essence of Horror crafted armour.
On a budget, get a cheapest corrupted rare 6 link with appropriate colors.

- Rare rings and amulet
Stats to look for (in order of importance):
Resists (more important if you use a Lightning Coil)
Physical damage to attacks/Crit multipier
Accuracy/Elemental damage with weapons
Attack speed/cold damage/lightning damage
Mana regeneration


Make sure you always have freeze and bleed immunity in your setup. Other then that, here's a quick flask breakdown:
Basalt flask: Since we wear Abyssus, we need as much physical mitigation as we can get.
Diamond flask: Great boost to our critical strike chance, about the same damage increase as Taste of Hate, popping this flask also means we will max out our Power charges faster (important vs bosses with phases, when your charges will dissapear after not hitting anything for a long time).
Lion's Roar: The best dps flask you can get.
Taste of Hate: Dps flask, but also a good defensive flask. It can help you deal with elemental reflect to some extent, also decreases amount of physical damage taken.
Atziri's Promise: Not a great dps boost (it's ok, but nothing major), however it does increase our leech more then anything else. Also important to deal with reflect.
The Wise Oak: If your overcapped cold resist is greatest of all elemental resistances, this flask can give you a moderate dps increase. If it's the lowest, it can provide a little bit of protection against elemental reflect. In any case, it is a good resistance boost for Elemental Weakness maps (if you need more).
Silver flask: Can serve as poor man's Taste of Hate. Half the dps increase of ToH, and some defensive bonus if you go for "increased evasion during flask effect".
Sulphur flask: Another cheap dps flask, if you can't afford Lion's or Taste of Hate.


Look for following mods on your jewels (order of priority):
- Life
- Attack speed with claws
- Critical strike multiplier
- Physical damage/other attack speed mods (5-6%)/Cold damage (if Cold setup)
- Elemental resists
- Area damage/melee damage
- Critical strike chance
- Cold damage/Lightning damage (if Light+Cold setup)

Uber Lab enchantments:
My personal picks are underlined. Top enchants are also bolded.Helmet enchants: (and how much it would buff my dps with my current gear):
- Ice Golem buff effect (7.4%)
- Blade Flurry 40% damage (5.6%)
- Blood Rage 12% attack speed (4.7%)
- Ancestral Warchief grants additional 30% increased damage when active (4.2%)
- Elemental Weakness curse effect (1.4%, but 4.1% against normal monsters)
- Arctic Armour 36% buff effect increases mitigation from 13/12 at level 20 to 17.68/16.32, basically a free Endurance charge.
- Hatred mana reservation together with Enlighten 4 will allow you to run Herald of Ash on top of Hatred and Blasphemy, or add Arctic Armour without Perfect Form. Thank you Sarunastm for pointing this one out.

Boot enchants:
- Penetration if you haven't killed recently (7.2%) (keep in mind that in maps and even vs most bosses you will more often then not "killed recently", it is only good for PoB warrioring since it isn't as practical)
- Attack speed (6.2%)
- Cold damage (3.4%)
- Lightning damage if you haven't killed recently (2.2%, will probably be a bit higher in Light/Cold setup)
- Fire damage (1.6%)
- Leech (around 28%/33% more leech, with and without flask respectively)

Utility Gems:
Depending on your Ascendancy/availability/gear (unset rings), you might struggle to fit all listed gems. In order of importance:
- Auras
- Curses
- Whirling Blades + Fortify
- Golem, Totem, Enduring Cry
- other gems and CwDT setups

Cold setup: Hatred + Herald of Ash + Arctic Armour + Enlighten. If using Perfect Form, replace Herald of Ash with either Blasphemied Enfeeble or Elemental Weakness.
Light/Cold setup: Hatred + Arctic Armour + Herald of Ash + Enlighten

Whirling Blades + Faster Attacks + Fortify
Linking it with Fortify makes it easy to have Fortify almost all the time.

Blood Rage
Attack speed boost and Frenzy charge generation - great boost for both mapping and bosses.
Socket it in your claws, so that you can disable it easily by switching your weapon sets.

Vaal Haste
Great dps boost, with the nerfs to Vaal Lightning Trap this will probably serve you better (also speeds up map clear).

Ancestral Protector/Warchief
Both totems improve your dps by almost equal amount, but Warchief has a built in AoE, so its a preferred choice for us.
Protector might be a better choice against Chimera, since it boosts your attack speed, you will find the boss quicker during the smoke phase.

Enduring Cry
Endurance charges are great for increasing our survivability. It may take a bit of time to get used to using it constantly, but it's well worth it.

Ice Golem
Ice Golem helps with crit chance and accuracy, both extremely important. Best to put it in one of your CwDT setups, so you don't have to recast it yourself and waste time.

Cast When Damage Taken combo examples:
Cast When Damage Taken + Immortal Call + Increased Duration
This setup is a staple in almost every build. You use if you like it, personally, however, prefer constant 12% physical damage reduction then temporary immunity. Immortal Call will last 2.6 seconds with 3 Endurance charges, and over 0.65 seconds without.

Cast When Damage Taken + Ancestral Warchief + Blind + Ice Golem
This setup works better for Cold based setups - Blinded enemies have 50% less chance of hitting you, which can boost your evade chance from 40% to 70%, which is pretty good for one gem.
Having Blind on golem and totem increases the chance of actually blinding the enemy.

Cast When Damage Taken + Immortal Call + Frost Bomb + Vortex
Defensive setup: Physical protection, Cold penetration debuff and 10% slow. A great thing to have, as IC duration should be decent without Increased Duration gem, thanks to Endurance Charges.

Elemental Weakness
Greatest curse of them all, as a bonus, we can get it as a "on hit corruption" on gloves, which saves us some gem slots and improves consistency.
If you don't have such gloves, use your curse either in CwDT setup (which will proc most often on bosses, where you actually need it) or as a Curse on Hit setup with a skill like Ball Lightning or Bladefall for AoE cursing.

Vaal Lightning Trap
A 20% more damage for a single gem, good value for 1 gem slot, But you have to decide between this and Vaal Haste.

Frost Bomb
Only worth it in Cold setup, due to majority of damage being scaled with it.
Decent damage increase. Unlike Vaal Lightning Trap, you can recast it unlimited number of times - works perfect in a low level CwDT setup.

This is a defensive option, as even bosses can be slowed by up to 10%. Keep it in a low level CwDT for constant reapplying.

Frost Blades edition:

Above screenshot was taken using:
18/14 Frost Blades
20/10 Multistrike
20/20 Weapon Elemental Damage
20/23 Elemental Focus
21/20 Melee Physical Damage
20/20 Cold Penetration
With 20/20 Frost Blades and Multistrike, you can achieve 516k dps tooltip (2.6 values).

Worth mentioning, with Frost Blades, sustaining Power Charges is harder, since projectiles don't strike an additional time, yet kill monsters, robbing you of opportunity to gain charges with Forbidden Power.
This also applies to other ascendancies that can rely on percentage based "on hit/strike" mechanics.
Also, note that reflect becomes more obnoxious, so do get Yugul pantheon power for reflect damage reduction.

Changes from normal setup:
Main attack:
Frost Blades + Weapon Elemental Damage + Elemental Focus + Multistrike + Melee Physical Damage + Cold Penetration

Hatred + Arctic Armour (or Blasphemy Enfeeble)
CwDT + Enfeeble or self cast Elemental Weakness for bosses if running Blasphemy Enfeeble.

Shaper's Touch
Touch of Anquish x2
Strength/Evasion armour like Lightning Coil or Belly of the Beast (for easier coloring)

2x Fight for Survival jewels
(didn't have those equipped in the Beacon or Springs video)
My build guides:

Taking a break from PoE, catch me up in Warframe: https://www.warframe.com/signup?referrerId=5b625847f2f2eb0ea0750322
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Last edited by Bristoling on Sep 11, 2017, 5:35:43 PM
Last bumped on Jan 22, 2018, 1:50:43 PM

Benchmarks (stats to get):
5.5-6k Life at level 90
With Belly of the Beast, you want to break at least 6.4k.

25+ mana regeneration per second
This is quite important for QoL reasons and sometimes survivability. After using Whirling Blades, crossing the map, you might end up with no mana to attack when you finally encounter monsters, or your movement speed will simply be restricted to your mana regeneration. Having 25-30 is comfortable. If you can't achieve it, following nodes can be taken:
- Druidic Rite near Ranger (also flask charges and duration, but least actual mana regen)
- Primal Spirit near Ranger (flask charges, intelligence if you need stats, medium mana regen)
- Mana Flows near Duelist (single biggest mana regeneration boost on the tree, but no other bonuses)

89-91% accuracy
This is enough, as after you reach around 90%, you start hitting really big dimnishing returns for each extra point of accuracy.

Overcapped resistances
Depending on the Ascendancy version you take, it may be difficult to get your resists high enough to negate Elemental Weakness map mod (especially if you use Lightning Coil).
After you use up your usual slots (like rings/belt), sacrificing damage mods for resistances on jewels might be a good idea. On the tree, it usually takes 2 points to get either 10, 11, or 15 to elemental resistances, usually mixed in with some evasion or armour. Therefore, investing in resistances on the tree is expensive and inefficient.
A jewel can have:
- 10% to elemental resistances, and additionally 14% double res.
- %life
- damage mods
In other words, for 2-3 points, you can unlock a jewel and get same bonuses as the resistance nodes + additional life/damage as an extra on top of it.

My character's gear and Path of Building pastebins (3.0):

Path of Building pastebin:
With 3 more levels, another cheap life+2 stat jewel and taste of hate, we can easily break 2 million dps to Shaper with a 297 pdps claw: https://pastebin.com/DUewDwkr
After getting another jewel/Taste of Hate, I could upgrade my current jewels to life+3 stat, then amulet, and finally claws.

My character's Path of Building pastebins (2.6):
Path of Building pastebins:
https://pastebin.com/6px77JgD for Cold setup.
https://pastebin.com/Ai00DDt9 for Light/Cold setup.
Both pastes got Enemy type: Guardian/Shaper selected, and Frenzy Charges unchecked. You can play around with current equipment, or compare it to other builds that have access to 400+ dps crit claws and other bonkers gear :)
This is a 2.6 setup, but you can easily change it to 3.0.

Stat screenshots (2.6, yet to update):
- Gems: One 21/20, some 20/20, few 15/20 or 18/18 etc.
- Cold setup: Means lower tooltip dps due to Cold Penetration gem not increasing it. Light/Cold setup will have higher tooltip dps - around 27-30% more.
- Do note that due to "fake dual wielding", both attack speed value and damage numbers aren't accurate (should be higher). You can get higher values using another claw, but real dps is higher with Doryani's. Trust me on this one.

Hideout dps Golem+Totem, Inc AoE

Hideout dps Golem+Totem, Conc Effect

Combat dps, Golem+Totem+Flasks, Inc AoE, full charges

With new 320 dps claw and leveling up a few gems:

Combat dps, Golem+Totem+Flasks, Conc Effect, full charges

With new 320 dps claw and leveling up a few gems:

Defenses unbuffed

Defenses with flasks and 3 Endurance charges
- 4586 armour, 59% estimated physical damage reduction
- 8973 evasion, 41% evade chance
- 186% fire resistance, 263% cold resistance, 176% lightning resistance
For some reason my game started crashing when trying to take a screenshot with flasks popped, so I just wrote the stats down.

Boss/Content section
Now, we all know that there are mechanics and requirements that while aren't apparent, need to be fulfilled if you want to blast through content. Here, you will find some gear/gem/tree changes you need to make to have an easy time with specific content:

Shaper: No special mechanics, apart from small cold (and light?) penetration on a few of his attacks, iirc.
If this is your first time doing Shaper, watch all available videos to have a rough idea on what to expect. There is quite a few of them on my channel, most of them from my other BF witch build, but techniques are excatly the same - that is if you can suffer watching my slideshows, if not, find some other Blade Flurry videos that show Shaper fights (hopefully not a mirrored gear 2 second kills, you won't learn anything from those).

Minotaur: A lot of physical damage here. Make sure you don't stay too long in falling rocks circles, and dodge his burrow attack/slam every time. He won't use burrow unless your Golem/Totem/You are away from him - best to position totem behind him, stick close, and pray he doesn't go after the golem that is chilling a bit behind you. Still, if your rig doesn't lag like mine, you can easily dodge all his dangerous attacks. Make sure your Endurance charges are always up and running.

Hydra: Always, always, stay behind the Hydra, and you will almost never get hit by her attacks. However, just to be safe, don't forget about Enduring Cry, as most of her attacks deal majority of physical damage.

Phoenix: While Phoenix channels his fire nova blast, he lowers your fire resistance by up to -50%. Make sure you are seriously overcapped, if you want to have a slightest chance of tanking the explosion. Also remember, the birds he summons deal fire damage, so being hit by them if you aren't overcapped will seriously hurt. If you cannot get 185 fire resistance, don't worry - just dodge his blast ahead of time, don't be greedy - or his spawns will kill you.
This is the only fight where you might want to stick to AoE gem, to clear birds faster and stay more out of the way of the Phoenix himself.

Chimera:Finding him in the cloud in time is pure rng, but make sure you disable your Blood Rage beforehand, otherwise you will have less time to do it. Keeping Endurance charges up is very important. Also, if your chaos resist is low (mine is at -60), you have to be really careful during snake minion phase. Having a life flask with poison immunity is recommended for this boss.
Now imagine this flask with Poison immunity instead.
Don't rush adds in a straight line, or you will soak all the projectiles on your face. Zig zag to them instead.

Breachlord Domains: All easy. However, if you run Chayula domain, make sure you are prepared, and your AoE is decent. This is probably the only content, for which you might want to respec some of your skill points, and grab Blast Radius notable in Witch area - extra AoE helps a lot with the timer. If you stay on top of the breach edge, you might not realize quick enough and kill yourself on a reflect rare. This usually means you rip a Chayula stone, which isn't cheap, and you will cry, so stay a bit behind the edge.
For Chayula, recommended at least 10-20% chaos resist during domain clear.
For Chayula and Uul-Nethol, I recommend use of Sibyl's Lament ring to reduce reflected damage, and taking Yugul pantheon to further help.

Atziri and Uber Atziri: Atziri fight is purerly mechanical - if you know her attacks and are good at dodging things, you will be fine. Practice normal Atziri a lot before moving on to Uber, and never attack the one which is holding a mirror during split phase.
Dodge Oversoul slam attacks, and try to activate them in different time intervals for easier kills.
Trio is definately most dangerous, if your chaos resist is low. I still have no idea how the Trio works (they get special buffs depending on who you kill first and second or something), and for that reason, I still haven't done Uber Atziri yet - I ripped twice, once when Uber Trio was ghosted thanks to prophecy triggering (just my luck), second time due to immense lag/delays which cost me 4 portals, then another 2 on Uber Atziri herself. Definately check the wiki or other resource for their fight mechanics, as I'm pretty bad dealing with them.
My build guides:

Taking a break from PoE, catch me up in Warframe: https://www.warframe.com/signup?referrerId=5b625847f2f2eb0ea0750322
Use above link for free booster when you sign up! :)
Last edited by Bristoling on Sep 11, 2017, 6:01:28 PM
Added "deathless" (see description) normal Atziri in a 4-link, to show viability on a budget and as a league starter.
Still haven't redone the lab, optimized links and gems are still 19/0.
Warning: extremely laggy during first 2 minutes or so, you can skip directly to Atziri fight if you prefer :)

edit: Now also split the guide into 2 similar but different builds: one evasion based, second more dps/flat life focused (aka original).

edit2: Evasion/dodge based setup didn't really work out as expected. However, I salvaged it and made it more like original setup - now they're called Cold and Light/Cold setups, respectively (you can't call something an Evasion setup with only 30-40% chance to evade).

edit3: Added Gorge and Overgrown ruin runs.

edit4: Updated "My character stats" section.
My build guides:

Taking a break from PoE, catch me up in Warframe: https://www.warframe.com/signup?referrerId=5b625847f2f2eb0ea0750322
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Last edited by Bristoling on Jun 5, 2017, 5:56:54 PM
where does it say that bosses will no longer be immune to status ailments?
the 3.0 patch notes didn't even come out yet. Chill k.
Nemesis IGN: [Removed by Admin]
hellzer wrote:
the 3.0 patch notes didn't even come out yet. Chill k.
None of the changes affect the build whatsoever so far. Apart from +2% life thanks to small change to two Mana and Life nodes.

Belof wrote:
where does it say that bosses will no longer be immune to status ailments?
I'm not saying that with certanity, but it is a possibility.

Why are bosses given complete immunity to certain ailments rather than "reduced effectiveness" or "Unaffected by X"? The latter prevents bosses from being trivialized, while also not gimping legitimate builds that rely on targets simply being under those ailments.
The team intend to tone down or remove outright immunities, potentially as early as 3.0.0. This requires other solutions to the same problems, which are under development.
My build guides:

Taking a break from PoE, catch me up in Warframe: https://www.warframe.com/signup?referrerId=5b625847f2f2eb0ea0750322
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Last edited by Bristoling on Jun 8, 2017, 12:31:37 PM
BF has a huge change. be ready for this. currently playing beta. not sure how they gona change it after beta.

if you gona play with those added damage thats gg now.
Last edited by tomtong1995 on Jun 9, 2017, 5:05:01 AM
tomtong1995 wrote:
BF has a huge change. be ready for this. currently playing beta. not sure how they gona change it after beta.

if you gona play with those added damage thats gg now.
You mean Brutality support? Unfortunately it won't work for this particular build since we scale mostly elemental damage. That's not to say we couldn't convert it into 100 physical build, in fact the only reason I chose elemental conversion is because there aren't that many good dps gems for pure phys (faster attacks or increased criticlas can boost dps by around 22% each, compared to elemental focus or weapon elemental damage each scaling 50+%)

Unless you mean something completely different, haven't seen any changes that would affect the build yet (either in a bad or good way)
My build guides:

Taking a break from PoE, catch me up in Warframe: https://www.warframe.com/signup?referrerId=5b625847f2f2eb0ea0750322
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Last edited by Bristoling on Jun 9, 2017, 10:48:32 AM
Do you think you can split the skill tree into different parts?
Poop_Lee wrote:
Do you think you can split the skill tree into different parts?
As in for levelling purposes or per ascendancy? I intended to make ascendancy ones today, but levelling is going to be hard to recommend, as I haven't levelled this build from 0. In fact I was working on something completely different, but because I don't have much time to play the game I just spent 60-70 regrets instead of levelling :)

I'll see what I can do.

Edit: Updated leveling section, not sure how accurate or optimized it is, but at least it's there :)

Edit2: Added Shaper video

Edit 15/06/2017
- Added Marauder ascendancy choices and stats.

- Added Frost Blades gear/gem changes, at the bottom of the guide, and t13 Frost Blades video.
400+k tooltip dps fully buffed, around 100k unbuffed.

Edit 17/06/2017
- Added "Boss/Content section", with some basic information on how to deal with hard content.

- Added Chayula run, and t14 Springs Frost Blades video. Apparently, wielding Touch of Anquish and Doryani's Invitation is worse then dual wielding two Touch of Anquish, that is fixed in added Frost Blades video run.
For some reason, quality of uploads have dropped, I'll try to fix it next time.
My build guides:

Taking a break from PoE, catch me up in Warframe: https://www.warframe.com/signup?referrerId=5b625847f2f2eb0ea0750322
Use above link for free booster when you sign up! :)
Last edited by Bristoling on Jun 16, 2017, 7:39:29 PM

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