[3.0 HC-Beta] Elementalist / Necromancer MOM 5-6 Golem Summoner [videos]

[Content has been edited to reflect improved understanding of minion damage mechanics]

Why am I posting this now?
The beta is far from complete and this build has not yet come close to its full potential (Gems are lvl 17, char is lvl 81, and it's in beta-hc, which is about 1 step above ssf), but I have been asked by several folks to do at least a brief write up of the Elementalist golem summoner I am currently running, which I have found to be extremely fun. This will be less a full guide and more of a quick walk-through of the nuts and bolts of the character. If you find it interesting, I will check back in periodically to answer specific questions.

What have you done of note with this build so far in Beta hc?
Atziri, Uber Izaro, one complete wing of the Hall of Grandmasters (before game crashed and I lost the rest of the map) up to T12 maps (nothing higher has dropped yet)

What is this build? (Videos here)
4-5 Flame golems and a stone golem follow you as you cast ball lightnings that massively debuff your enemies and show the flame golems where to fire. Life pool and MOM make you quite tanky. Decoy totem distracts your stronger enemies. I've tried to figure out how to explain it better than that, but it's easier to show you.

Because we are in beta, I cannot link the items and tree the way I normally would. However, the first of the following 3 short videos is a tour of the character's gear and skill tree, the next is an example run through a typical T-7 mud-geyser (to show what the build can do in normal circumstances) and the last is a run through a corrupted 8-mod T-11 Wasteland including Enfeeble, Extra enemy life, Extra Boss life, and no life/mana regen. (to show what the build does in more challenging circumstances)

Equipment and stats: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I3_aV3_b7Sw&feature=youtu.be
Mud Geyser Run: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8OslYar7-FQ&feature=youtu.be
Wasteland Run: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gsfpe7FzQb4&feature=youtu.be

How do I get 6 golems?
1 Base, 1 from Liege of the primordial ascendancy, 2 from clayshapers, 2 from anima stone with at least 3 primordial harmonies.

What if I cant get an anima stone?

The build runs over content for a long time with only 4 flame golems. Anima stone lets you add the last flame and stone golems.

I see only 30% increased minion damage on your tree. Where does the damage come from?

4x primordial harmony grant around 70% increased damage per golem type. 2 golem types=approx 140% inc damage. There is also another 35% minion damage and 12% minion cast speed adjacent on the tree (near ele eq), which I intend to take when I am done tanking up, for a total of around 205% inc damage.

This is further enhanced by linked gems: Flame golem>GMP>Spell Echo>Minion Damage>Minion speed>Controlled Destruction. [Minion speed can be swapped out for a variety of other options if you can get minion speed on essence crafted jewelry. This has not been possible yet in beta hc]

The flame golems' cast speed is enhanced by your periodic casting of flesh offering. Then your enemies get their fire res reduced dramatically, as explained below.

How do I play this?

Offensively: The ball lightning linked to curse on hit flammability and temp chains massively debuffs every enemy, and acts as a tracer round to let your golems know where to unleash firey death.

Flammability with 30% curse effectiveness debuffs enemy fire res by about 54% The ball also procs ele equilibrium to debuff fire res by another 50%, for a total of approximately 104% reduced fire res against normal mobs. Even against curse immune enemies, you still get 50% fire res reduction from EE.

Flesh offering, cast periodically, improves your golems cast and movement speed significantly. Desecrate is used to provide corpses for flesh offering in boss fights that do not generate corpses on their own. Convocation is used to re-position golems when needed.

Defensively: The 20% quality temp chains, with 30% curse effectiveness on the tree slows enemies by around 50%. Any enemy unlucky enough to hit you for more than 500 or so then becomes chilled (and potentially blinded) through the COTD arctic breath, slowing them by another 30%.

Additionally, decoy totem and Stone golem take turns taunting your enemies. For your golems the primordial harmony jewels provide 2% of max life regen/sec each, for a total of 8% life regen per second. Further, the flame golems are immune to elemental damage via the Liege of the primordial ascendancy. Golems do not die during ordinary mapping, and rarely die against most bosses.

Why this build is so tanky:
While CI was nerfed into the ground, MOM has been buffed significantly. MOM now applies to all damage, not just hits, with 30% of damage taken applied to mana before life. This means that so long as your mana is less than approximately 43% of your life (30/70 ratio), every point of unreserved mana counts toward your life total. We use no auras in this build, so that means every point of mana=life. The tree has 185% increased life so far with another 13% in easy reach. It also has 169% increased mana, with another 40% in easy reach. As you level, depending on your gear, you will add life or mana nodes to stay close to that golden 43% figure. At lvl 81 (and approximately 6 nodes short because of the missing Acts 9 and 10, so really more like lvl 75) my beta hc char has 5646 life and 2443 mana (and a little over 400 es] In an actual league, with decent gear available on the market, this could be improved somewhat. While it may not reach old ES levels, Life/MOM has the obvious advantage of allowing potion use for recovery. In feel right now, it is much more like playing an 8k life build than an 8k ES or Hybrid build

Anyway, its 3am local time and I'm afraid that's the best I can do for the moment. If there are questions, I am happy to check back in periodically to respond. I hope some of you are able to enjoy the build as much as I have.
Last edited by Orion72 on Jul 14, 2017, 5:10:08 AM
Last bumped on Aug 8, 2017, 6:49:16 AM
Further testing re: Controlled Destruction vs. Minion Speed

Further testing seems to show that if you can get even one piece of decent essence crafted jewelry with minion speed of Screaming or better (fear essence) then controlled destruction becomes more important than minion speed in the 5L.
Hey, thanks for testing and showing an example of Life/Mom Golems. Looking forward to seeing you progress :)

I think you might get slightly more damage with a 4.1.1 setup though, as well as increased safety if you went with an Ice Golem (spreading chilled ground).

Rough calculation of "increased minion/golem damage" vs. golem type:
(should be correct; let me know if I'm off)

For 6 Golems
G=(1.00 + 0.70 + 0.30)B
(1.00 is your base "increased minion damage")
(0.70 is your total Harmony bonus)
(0.30 is 30% bonus from tree)
This gives you total damage of 12.00 times your base.
D=6x2.00B >>> factor of 12.00

For 5.1 Golems
G=(1.00 + 1.40 + 0.30)B
D=5x2.70B >>> factor of 13.50

For 4.1.1 Golems
G=(1.00 + 2.10 + 0.30)B
D=4x3.40B >>> factor of 13.60

For Golems
G=(1.00 + 2.80 + 0.30)B
D=3x4.10B >>> factor of 12.10

For Golems
G=(1.00 + 3.50 + 0.30)B
D=2x4.80B >>> factor of 9.60

These calculations assume your sub-golems contribute zero damage. The gap obviously widens if you factor them in as well. and are just theoretical. Limited gem slots make them rather impractical, though I think it would be fun to see somebody dedicate all their gem links to individual golems :P

I've done some other (hopefully not incorrect) sample calculations for fully fleshed-out builds here if you're curious.
⚡ Lightning Golems:
⛄ Ice Golems:
I believe your numbers are correct and I actually did try a 4-1-1 configuration briefly with an ice golem. I decided that, for me, the small additional damage increase was not worth the extra gem slot/need to manage the additional critter, loss of extra coverage from additional flame golem. But I don't think there is anything wrong with your approach. I might give the added ice golem another shot--possibly slotting it in next to the stone golem in place of minion life. If I do, I'll post my thoughts on the result.

My thanks.

[Edit Follows]

In the name of science (admittedly very squishy science) I spent some time this evening going back and forth between the 5-1 setup I recommend in the guide and a 4-1-1 setup with an ice golem, running various different maps in the T7-T11 range. My feeling at the end of this is that offense and defense actual feel very similar. Because the 5-1 setup uses 1 gem slot less and requires slightly less maintenance, I continue to favor it. Ymmv.
Last edited by Orion72 on Jul 11, 2017, 4:12:37 AM
Looks interesting, I've been thinking of trying a golem build for 3.0.

How did you level early on, were you using SRS or? I've always been put off these builds since early level summoner setups are pretty meh, and you're not taking anything that would benefit spells.

Also why did you not pick up gravepact or death attument? Prioritizing defense since you're playing hardcore?
For leveling I did indeed use srs until 34, got liege of the primordial ascendancy and then immediately started playing with 2 golems, which worked fine at that point until I could use 2 clayshapers at 41.

Re defense: I do prioritize defense for hc, but I prioritize mine, not the golems. I prefer to use those nodes to take life and mana. The golems are taken care of sufficiently with the combination of elemental immunity from liege of the primordial and the regen provided by the primordial harmony jewels. The only time I had any significant issues with golem death (so far) was fighting chaos based exiles in the hall of grandmasters. And even these could be worked around through judicious use of resummoning and decoy totem.

This has functioned well up through T12s so far. I'll let you know how things progress. ;)

(Supplemental edit)
I realize I misunderstood the comment above. The actual answer was simply yes, I was prioritizing defense for hc. I did use the grave pact cluster in early leveling, dropped them (once damage was op for level anyway) till about lvl 85, and have begun to pick them back up, now that I feel sufficiently tanky, for T15s, where the 2 minion faster casting nodes have made a demonstrable difference.
Last edited by Orion72 on Jul 12, 2017, 6:26:30 AM
Mr. Orion u are literally saved my evening. So what im really interested in:
1) POB link, with optimized endgame damage and gear.
2) More gear showcase in this post, including lvling advice (even considering its in the bot of the post).
3) More tests with survivability, because im HC player too myself.

In the end its great build, which really looks fun to play and budget to start, great job man!
I'm glad to have improved your evening. I don't use Path of building, but I will see if I can figure it out in the next day or two and will post a link if I can.

The gear is all shown in the first video, as it is not possible for me to link gear from beta hc. I will see if I can post a bit more about leveling later today in terms of tree, but the short version is srs to 34, do first ascendancy with srs. Take liege of the primordial. Switch to flame golems immediately, using LMP instead of GMP until 38. Replace with GMP at 38. Equip 2 Clayshapers at 41. Wreck content up to T6-T8 or so with 4 flame golems. Add anima stone and primordial harmonies when you can afford. Then add last flame golem and a stone golem.

Survivability tests will continue as I progress. I will try to post updates. Currently lvl 86 and doing great in up to T-12 content even with ridiculous mods. Close to 8500 effective life, with potions, feels very solid as long as I am not playing stupid. I'll let you know once anything higher tier becomes available for me to run.
Last edited by Orion72 on Jul 11, 2017, 8:20:44 PM
Re Path of Building: With my apologies, this interface is sufficiently crazy making that I am going to have to say I don't have the patience for it for now. If anyone feels like putting together a POB link based on the posted short video they are welcome to do so, but it won't be me.

Re Leveling advice: However, I will post my thoughts on priorities for the tree and a spot of leveling advice.

Step 0: You'll be leveling with Summon Raging Spirits through lvl 34. Grab a flame totem or decoy totem to go with them and this part of the process, while kinda boring, wont take excessively long.

Step 1: Proceed directly to MOM and the three nodes past it. This makes early leveling much easier as the build becomes very early-game-tanky and there are few mana issues, even without an elreon ring.

Step 2: Proceed back past Occultist's Dominion and grab Lord of the Dead and Heart and soul. This provides a nice early damage boost for srs while leveling as well as some additonal life/mana.

Step 3: Proceed down through retribution and Discipline and Training to grab Elementalist. More life, leveling damage, and resists to help in early game. You should now be around lvl 20 or so.

Step 4: Can proceed to Gravepact. I know I write that I don't take this until later, but when actually leveling, I took it at this point and then specced back out for a while once my damage was ridiculous. I am retaking these nodes at lvl 85-88. In the early game, they will be helpful for leveling with srs.

Step 5: As you prepare to transition to golems, grab elemental equilibrium and skittering runes. As soon as you are running golems, you will have ball lightning to proc ee. Skittering runes will boost the Flammability you will use as your first curse (self-cast, until you get curse on hit at lvl 38)

Step 6: Proceed to Whispers of doom. Around this time, ascend and take liege of the primordial. By the time you get there, you will have curse on hit and can link both flam and temp chains to your ball lightning.

Step 7: As you obtain the relevant jewels, take the nearby jewel sockets to place them

Step 8: If hc, for the rest of the game, take all relevant life and mana nodes, prioritizing in a way that keeps your mana close to 43% of your life total. I'll pause here a moment--one could argue to just prioritize life, since you will generally (though not always, depending on gear) get a larger absolute increase from the life nodes. I prefer to try to maintain the ratio largely for dealing with lab. See, traps adjust their damage based on your life and ES but they do not count mana. One more time for emphasis: As far as I can tell, the traps do not count your mana in scaling damage, even if you have MOM. In practical terms, this means that MOM represents huge effective mitigation for traps, and makes lab running much less miserable.

Step 8: If sc, take enough life and mana nodes to feel comfortable and then take all other jewel slots you can reach to slot additional primordial harmonies.

On Gear, prioritize:
1. Capping resists
2. Life
3. Mana
4. Minion Speed (via essence crafting only, using essences of fear)

The ascendancies should be taken in this order:
1. Liege of the primordial
(See confession post on page 2 regarding why you might only want to take this ascendancy while leveling)

A quick word on Pantheon: My current favorites are the Brine king and Ryslatha. Brine King prevents chain stun/freeze, and the eroding one enhancement adds 100% increased block/stun recovery, which can be helpful in tight spots. Ryslatha grants 3 charges on life flasks every 3 seconds if life flasks were not used recently, and with Winged Death enhancement grants 60% bonus life recovery from flasks when on low life. The first is huge for doing lab and trials, since you can now fully recover life flasks by simply staying stationary in a safe place for a short time. The second will help keep you alive when you have made a mistake, are out of position and are frantically spamming your seething life flasks as you try to flame dash away from the surrounding mobs. Ask me how I know this . . . .

Hope this helps sufficiently, and apologies again for not having the patience to deal with the POB interface.

Last edited by Orion72 on Jul 14, 2017, 5:05:41 AM
Progress Report:

First T13 Map was a shaped atoll. Mellowly rolled with bloodlines, can't stun, extra exile, extra monster life, enfeeble. This was a walk over.

Current lvl: 86
Current Life: 6020
Current Unreserved Mana:2537
Flame Golem lvl: 18

[Supplementary Edit]

Build runs over T13s. Atoll, Sulphur Wastes, Beacon.

Ran T14 Volcano, moderately rolled. Similar experience to T13s except boss, who was more challenging, but entirely doable. Got a Core drop

Ran T15 Core. Fought Eater of Souls down to 3 dead hearts and about 1/3 health before used last port. Had foolishly used 2 ports prior to this fight for loot. Because I was overconfident. Mini bosses not difficult. Reasonably certain this is doable with 6 ports, probably even moreso once gem levels up a bit or if I get a 6L. Even with gear far from perfect and lvl 18 gems pretty sure T15s are a reasonable place to be. Will keep you updated.
Last edited by Orion72 on Jul 12, 2017, 1:32:01 AM

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