Probably one of the best experience i have had leveling a build yet (playin constantly melee since 2.6)
just don't use sunder... dunno why people still recommend that skill...
Yea, sorry I have been busy with life guys and girls! This is the first league since 3.0 that I haven't created a guide or even updated any of my guides.
I haven't played a melee build in a long time, so I need to do some research and make a better suggestion on how to level melee. I'd do a couple practice runs, but it goes back to that whole time thing :)
To be honest, as long as you have a weapon with decent phys damage (explained in the guide as well) it should be a breeze. Especially since they added flat phys to nearly all melee attacks. With as much early leech and regen as we have and resist being mostly capped, you should fly through the story line and rarely die to bosses.
no worries. last sentence was more said to myself, because you can still read it in every second guide.^^ just stack flat phys and attack speed and go bf and labs as soon as you can. no life or res needed for story mode. the leech is too good, even without bloodseeker
Last edited by FixItgdi on Mar 17, 2020, 7:25:33 AM
This is a truly budget build that will get you deep into maps on self found gear, which you will then be able to fill out your atlas. The build only really has 2 required uniques that are affordable off self found currency early in a league, and extremely cheap later in a league.
**Remember** This is only a guide, and these are my suggestions. I encourage people to always test different things and stick with the things you like best!
Don't be concerned if some skills/gems setup you see recommended in the guide will be different than what you see in the videos and linked gear.
Path of Building link, skill trees and skill gems setup will always be updated.
This build was first played in 3.0, which is when the gear and videos came from. With every new league there are changes, and recommendations may also change.
I like to try different builds every league, so I probably won't be playing this build but I will continue to update it with recommended changes for players that do. hope you all enjoy!
Explanation of Build
1. 2 Required uniques: Bringer of Rain & Bloodseeker. Both Are Cheap and BIS. Never really need to upgrade these two items!
2. On practically no investment this build is Shaper/Uber Elder viable.
3. Use your currency to fill out atlas and fund your next build or with 1-3 ex investment you can farm Guardians, Shaper and Elder.
4. Tanky! should only die to one-shots. 6 pieces of rare gear to stack life and lots of other defensive options on the skill tree.
5. TONS of potential to min/max if you wanna pump currency into it. Upgrades are relatively cheap, since we have so many pieces of rare gear we can shop for 2 mid-high rolled resists on each and focus more on high life and phys damage rolls. Gear really doesn't get stupid expensive until you want a Shaper/Elder chest, Blade Flurry lab enchant helm or need 3 res, life and phys dmg with all high rolls on rares.
Nearly 12 attacks/second - .3 seconds to reach max leech - Average of 89 leech instances in effect = about half of your life pool life leeched per second instantly and over time.
Playstyle is very straightforward
1. Drop totem near enemy.
2. Use Whirling Blades to dash into position (chug flasks as needed)
3. Cast Blood Rage and Drop Banner
4. Get Blade Flurry up to 6 stacks, release for max damage as many times as possible.
5. Whirling Blades to dodge stuff.
6. Repeat steps 1-5.
Against bosses or trash mobs that you can face-tank, You literally just stand there and hold Blade Flurry till 6 stacks, release, and repeat. Most mobs die before you even reach 6 stacks. No brain required!
As you can see here, simply get into melee range, hold BF until 6 stacks + release as many times as you can before the boss winds up for the slam, then whirling blades to dodge the 1 shot.
Final Gems Setup! Always follow this! (Not what you see in example gear)
- In Bringer of Rain: Blade Flurry - Brutality - Infused Channeling -Impale Support
*You can swap out Infused Channeling for Increased AoE for better clear speed while mapping. Remember to swap back for boss fights! <--Important
- In 3 link weapon: Whirling Blades - Faster Attacks - Fortify
- In 3 link weapon: Ancestral Protector - Maim - Blood Rage
- in boots or gloves: CWDT (lvl 13) - Punishment (lvl 16) - Immortal Call (lvl 15) - Increased Duration
- In boots or gloves: Herald of Purity - Blood and Sand - Dread Banner - Pride
Gem Options! Important!
Cyclone/Blade Flurry swap: You have 3 options:
-Cyclone - Impale - Infused Channeling - Brutality- for faster map clear
-Cyclone - Impale - Increased AoE - Pulverize - for maximum AoE and fastest map clear if you're farming lower maps that you can mostly 1-shot rares.
-Blade Flurry - Impale - Infused Channeling - Brutality- for Bosses.
If you don't mind spending a few seconds before and after boss fights, this will speed up your clear and boss killing!
• This build leaves us with very little mana to spam Whirling Blades: If you prefer to spam you have two options, but both will drop your damage by about 8%.
1. You can drop Herald of Purity which will give you plenty enough unreserved mana.
2. Replace Fortify with Blood Magic, and rely only on your Dread Banner for Fortify. This is a good option if you find that you kill bosses before the Dread Banner's Fortify effect wears off. The big downside is that unless you manage your banner extremely well, you won't have consistent Fortify for much of the time while mapping and possibly during a boss fight.
3. You can move replace Inc Brutality on your Blade Flurry setup with Fortify and use Blood Magic linked with Whirling Blades. This also gives you better Fortify uptime and even allows you to spam WB in no-regen maps.
4. If you don't mind Whirling Blades being a bit slower, replace the Faster Attacks with Blood Magic.
*Important Quality of Life Tips!
#1:When you click to assign Whirling Blades to a key, there is an option to make it "attack without moving" This will make your movement skill much easier to use! Trust me!
#2: While leveling, keep 2 weapons with 3 green sockets each in your weapon swap. Just grab some cheap junk from a vendor, they don't need to be linked at all. In these weapons place 6 Blade Flurry gems. They will level with you, eventually they will all reach lvl 20, then you can sell a lvl 20 BF gem and a Gemcutter's Prism to a vendor, and receive a lvl 1/20% gem. You can sell these for instant currency, or put them back and level them to 20/20%.
If you take a 20/20 gem and use a Vaal orb on it, it has a chance to become 21/20 or 20/23%... or even 19/20. If it becomes 19/20, it's trash. But if it becomes 21/20 or 20/23 then you can use it for a bit more damage, or sell it!
#3: Once you get a Bringer of Rain, put on a 6 socket chest armour and then equip the BoR. Even though the stats and gems in the armour will be ignored, the gems will still gain exp and level up! Just put any gems that you'd like to try and Vaal or sell once they reach lvl 20 or lvl 20/20%.
Typical Cost of Gear & Example Gear To Use
Don't follow the gems in this gear! Read the current league updates at the beginning of the guide for an explanation.
I've followed the cost of this gear every league since 3.0. This is typically what these items sell for during the first few days. Things get MUCH cheaper after a few days.
Wasp Nest + Bloodseeker make a really good combo and will provide enough damage to do all content.
Bringer of Rain day 1 cost: 1-5c
Belt of the Deceiver day 1 cost: 2c
Bloodseeker day 1 cost: 2-7c
Wasp Nest day 1 cost: 1-4c
Rare Amulet day 2 cost: 1c
Rare Boots day 3 cost: 2-5c
Rare Gloves day 3 cost: 5-9c
Remember, don't follow gems in the example gear. Use the list above!
Must have 1 Bloodseeker and 1 other Claw
You will need to make sure when using Bladestorm to level or Bladeflurry that both weapon types are compatible with the skills.
Ie: Bladestorm requires an axe or sword since we dual wield, that means you have to can only use 1 axe and 1 sword, 2 swords or 2 axes. Having a sword/dagger/claw in your off hand won't allow you to use Sunder at all.
Same goes with Bladeflurry. Only a combo of claws, swords and/or daggers will work.
Since Bloodseeker has intsa-leech, we would not gain the full benefits of skills that require us to be leeching if we wielded 2 Bloodseekers (Like, Immune to Stuns while Leeching). Since typical leech happens over a period of time, we have a different claw in our off-hand, that claw will leech over time and allow us to over leech and gain the "while leeching" benefits.
Keep a 6 Socket chest piece on with all the gems you like to swap or want to level and sell. Unequip the Bringer of Rain and that'll allow you equip the chest, then re-equip the BoR.
If you have trouble seeing the tree from the PoePlanner link, go all the way to the final tree. I will have a screen shot of it. You can simply search your skill tree for the nodes that the different progressions describe and follow it that way.
Passive Tree at 44 points: Run straight to Blade Barrier and Ambidexterity, this will give you plenty of damage because after this we're taking nothing but travel nodes until we get to Resolute Technique. Try to do normal Lab at the end of this tree.
Passive Tree 66 & 2 Ascendancy points: After all that traveling, we finally get some damage, life and leech! Get Forceful Skewering then Swift Skewering and Swagger. If you are leveling with Cyclone or Blade Flurry Charging Offensive is a must so grab it. Make your way towards the other side of the tree and get Herbalism, Weapon Artistry and Aspect of the Panther in whichever order you want. Try to have Cruel Lab done by the end of this tree or during the early stages of the next tree since this tends to be a rough spot gear-wise and you may need to cap res and get a few levels to do it safely.
Passive Tree 83 & 6 Ascendancy points: We will be close to lvl 70 and in maps soon. You'll probably want to switch into Blade Flurry when you can get a couple of decent claws/daggers/swords. You may need to take the +30 INT nodes to allow you to meet the requirements to equip claws/daggers. As soon as you switch to BF, grab Charging Offensive for it's amazing synergy with channeling skills. Next grab Gladiator's Perseverance on your way to the big life node on Scion wheel. If at any point you feel you need more life, just fill this wheel and go onto the other stuff after. Soul of Steel is too good to pass up as a 3 point defensive node. This is mostly the end of our travel nodes! Every point will either be stats or 2 point jewel nodes! Our tree is pretty much done after going through Strong Arm and getting Heart of the Warrior. Make sure to have Merc Lab completed before killing Kitava.
As a league starter, I recommend doing Uber Lab around lvl 80 to be safe. If you have lots of life on gear do it as soon as you can. Take Vaal Pact once your Uber Lab is complete (Vaal Pact makes dealing with traps a lot more difficult). Go through Strong Arm and grab Heart of the Warrior for a nice mix of dmg and life. Thick Skin is a good 2 point investment but we won't take the small 4% nodes unless we push into the late 90s. Taking Juggernaut and filling the Scion life wheel is better.
If at any point you get a good jewel, you can just grab the 1 point jewel on the way to Scion life wheel or any of the 2 pointers.
Pushing into the 90's - 114 points: Grab Iron Reflexes and Gladiators Perserverence if you haven't already. If you take this build into the 90's you have options: You can grab jewel nodes, frenzy chaarges for damage, endurance charges that scale well with our easy generation and Immortal Call, Berserking node for 18% attack speed. By now you should also have currency to afford some gear with enough INT to unspec out of the +30 nodes, if you do I HIGHlY suggest grabbing the Bloodletting node right above Swift Skewering. It's global damage reduction against anything you attack and a lot of damage!
This is the tree at lvl 91. The remaining 9 levels would all be the small life nodes, jewel sockets, end/frenzy charges of even Claws of the Pride wheel. All up to you!
Got to 91. Pheonix and Hydra completed, most T14's and 15's completed.
Gear with about 250c invested:
I spent 200c on a 350 phys DPs claw, 25c on a Lion's Roar Flask, 15c on Vivid Bloom Jewel with 28% phys damage, 10% global damage and about 10c buying/crafting a belt, gloves and amulet. Demon Turn ring was a really nice drop!
Don't follow the gems in this gear! The gems in my gear may be different than what I recommend due to league changes, experimentation or other random reasons. Make sure to follow the "Final Gems Setup" section above.
Should you spend a ton of currency on a 6L chest, and use a rare helmet?
Basically, if you wanted to invest you would have to invest a lot to overcome what you lose from BoR. You'd want a well rolled chest with some crazy Delve/Shaper/Elder/Veiled mods. The best ones I've see are:
-Increased effect of Auras
-% Phys damage taken as cold/fire/lightning damage
-% Chance to block attack damage (master craft)
You would also only get the blind when in Sand Stance, so we'd have to choose to stay in Sand against bosses and lose some DPS, or switch to Blood Stance and lose the Blind.
With BoR you get: 6% block chance, consistent blind, endurance charges, longer immortal call duration, physical damage added to attacks.
Taking this Build to the Next Level (Non-Budget)
We use Bringer of Rain because it's like having a cheap 7 link but we don't get the defensive benefits of body armour. I have yet to see any shaper/elder/unique armours that would benefit us more than what a BoR provides.
what to look for on gear Rule #1 - Make sure in addition to the following, you have enough ele resist to have each capped at 75%. Being over capped at 105% is recommended to deal with Elemental weakness maps/curses.
-2 Steel Rings: Tier 1 implicit = Adds (3-4) to (10-14) Physical Damage to Attacks
Tier 1 phys damage =Adds (6-9) to (13-15) Physical Damage to Attacks
Tier 1 Life = +(70-79) to maximum Life
(5-7)% increased Attack Speed
Tier 1 Ele dmg = (37-42)% increased Elemental Damage with Attack Skills
-Amulet: Tier 1 phys damage = Adds (11-15) to (22-26) Physical Damage to Attacks.
Tier 1 Life = +(80-89) to maximum Life
Tier 1 Ele dmg = (37-42)% increased Elemental Damage with Attack Skills
-Spiked Gloves: Tier 1 life = +(80-89) to maximum Life
Tier 1 phys damage = Adds (4-6) to (9-10) Physical Damage to Attacks
Tier 1 attack speed = (14-16)% increased Attack Speed
-Boots: Tier 1 movement speed = 30%
Tier 1 life = +(80-89) to maximum Life
-Rustic Sash: 24% increased physical damage implicit
Tier 1 life = +(90-99) to maximum Life or -Leather Belt: +40 to maximum life implicit
Tier 1 life = +(90-99) to maximum Life Additional Stats to look for: Strength = more phys dmg and life
Intelligence = required for claws, may allow us to respec out of +30 int nodes
Possible Uniques to use
gives a lot of dps, but doesn't provide as much life and res as a good rare belt.
Very good for leveling and provides nice dps, but again as well rolled rare with flat phys offers more.
Intelligence on Gear
1. If you can get a nice amount of Int on gear, you can save a couple points on your skill tree. Only worry about this if it is conveniently already there on gear with the Off/Def stats you REALLY need. Say you have a choice between an Amulet with 50 Int and no life, or one with 20 int and 60 life. Yes, the 50 Int Amulet would allow you un-spec the +30 node on your tree, but what will you use that point on? 60 life on an item will equal to over 200 flat life to your character after all the % increases from your tree are added. So you have to ask yourself; will the stats from that 1 point benefit me more than the stats I'm sacrificing on this item?
Strengths and Weaknesses
- Insta-Leech + Leech over time = you can leech from 1 to full life in .3 seconds.
- uneffected by Bleed and Immune to Stun while leeching
- Only 2 required unique items
- Cheap! You really don't have to grind-farm to gear up. the currency you collect and gear you sell while you level and begin to fill out your atlas will pay for required uniques!
-20% culling strike with tons of DPS for easy boss killing
-Very few map mods you cannot do
-Mana issues early, you will have to take a mana leech node and Gemeni Claw is almost a must.
- You have to be right up on dangerous bosses, it's a melee build after all.
- Don't dodge 1 shots = you die.
- Can't do No leech maps
- No regen/slower regen maps are slow because you can't spam Whirling Blades unless you use a Blood Magic setup.
- Int requirements will either cost you a passive point or two, unless you can get it on gear.
Soul of Solaris is our best option since it's good against bosses and big hits.
Minor God: There are 4 good choices here
Soul of Tukohama - I like this the best since we stand still to DPS
Ralakesh, Ryslatha and Shakari are also good.
Here is my favorite flask setup
- Bubbling or Seething Eternal Life flask
- Sulphur Flask
- Silver Flask
- Lion's Roar Granite Flask
- Quicksilver Flask
Mods to Roll:
1. Bubbling or Seething on your life flask
2. Increased effect and curse immunity on Quicksilver
3. Freeze immunity and Increased Armour on your Sulphur/Silver flask
Here's which gems you should be getting, when you should get them and some great leveling uniques I like to use to make leveling a breeze.
1. lvl 1 grab Frost Blades and Onslaught Support. Link them with your Chance to Bleed. It shouldn't be hard to grab a 3 link with 2 green and a red from a Tarkleigh. Do Bestel's quest and get a Quicksilver Flask.
Always be on the lookout for the following in order of importance:
1st. 1h weapons with flat phys and/or % phys increased. (Attack speed is nice too)
2nd. Boots with movement speed
3rd. Any gear with resistances and life
4th. Rings, Amulets & Gloves with Added Physical Damage to Attacks.
2. Always be on the lookout for 3 and 4 link drops while leveling! If you pick up a 4 link white gloves, boots, helm or armour with RRRG colored sockets (For Sunder) Use an Essence on it! (Greed, Anger, Hatrd, Wrath are the best)
3. Early on always pick up rare and magic swords, claws and daggers with bases closest to your level and ID them. Always try to have the highest DPS axe possible. Look for a weapon that has as much physical DPS as possible.
4. Get Ancestral Protector after entering the Submerged Passage.
5. Get Added Fire Support and Leap Slam after killing Brutus.
6. Get Sunder as your attack skill after Killing Merveil.
7. Act 2: Kill all Bandits. Kill the Weaver then go to Yeena, get Faster Attacks and Elemental Damage with Attacks from Yeena.
Setup a 4 link with Sunder - Faster Attacks - Added Fire - Elemental Damage With Attacks.
Link Leap Slam with Faster Attacks.
Get Herald of Ash and Blood Rage. Level up Herald, but don't level Blood Rage past lvl 10.
8. Act 3, after killing Grevacious get Bladestorm and use that if you have two good swords and/or axes.
9. Act 4: Get Immortal Call, Increased Duration, Phase Run, Cast When Damage Taken and a Lightning Golem.
Cast When Damage Taken Setup - Very important to only level these gems up as stated!
Get a 4 link for: Cast When Damage Taken (lvl 6) - Blood Rage (lvl 10) - Phase Run (lvl 8) -Punishment (lvl 9)
10. Act 6: Grab Fortify, setup a 3 link with Whirling Blades or Leap Slam - Faster Attacks - Fortify. Now, all you really have to worry about is 2 skills. Leap into a pack to gain fortify and Sunder them to death (usually only takes a hit or two)
In a 2 link put Cast when Damage Taken (lvl 6) - Punishment (lvl 9)
You should have around 2,500-3,000 health at this point. As you gain health, you can level up your CWDT and the other gems. I recommend to keep the CWDT proc at about 1/3rd of your health. Just make sure not to level the other gems out of CWDT's range, best thing is to never lvl any gems connected to your CWDT taken on the fly, wait until you are in your hideout with time to check gem lvl requirements to make sure they will always cast.
Leveling Uniques I love to Use:
If you get lucky and find some currency, I highly suggest picking up one of these items that are as close to your level as possible.
1. lvl 1 - Goldrim can def last you until mapping. Everything else is great until you are higher level to get better uniques.
2. lvl 10-16 - I'll always grab one of these weapons if I can afford it.
3. lvl 17 - I like this because it means no more mana worries! Although, you won't want to use any mana reserving skills with it, I feel like it's worth losing the extra damage to just be able to spam movement skills and attacks without worrying about mana flask.
4. lvl 20/25 - Get a Belt of the Deceiver. This will be our end game belt!
Otherwise, Prismweave scales our ele damage really well.
5. lvl 32/39 - Flesh-Eater at lvl 32 if you decide to use Sunder. Moonbender's Wing at 39 is really good for Bladestorm. Having Hrimsorrow + Malachai's + Moonbender adds a lot of elemental dmg that scales really well with Elemental Damage to Attacks Support. This should last you until maps.
6. By the time you get to maps, I would be looking to have at least 1 Bloodseeker Claw and a good Rare Claw with as much phys damage as possible. When you hit lvl 70 get your Bringer of Rain!
Stats to look for on Jewels
*For Abyss Jewels, flat phys damage, flat health and attack speed will benefit us the most.
*For regular jewels, look for these mods:
1. 5% or 6% life, 7% life if you can afford.
3. Attack speed
4. Area Damage
5. Physical - Phys with claws - Phys with one handed - Phys while dual (all do the same for you)
Examples of budget regular Jewels to use
Here are some jewels I used during testing. Rapture Ornament is pretty nice, the rest are average. Just imagine how many stats you could get with a decent amount of investment.
Credits and Thanks!
1. Douchebag_Dave for teaching how leech actually works, benefits of jewels over inefficient nodes on the tree and showing me that dmg auras are much better than Brutality.
2. lilinss Caught a big time mistake on my skill tree.
3. KirowGod1337 is the reason we have Dual Wield & 2 hand Sunder, and the Dual Wield Reave theory-craft up there.
4. mozom pointed out that Phase run and Punishment may not have 100% uptime, so I included a section on DPS with conditional factors.
5. Garfunkel suggested the option of going +2 bandit points instead of Oak, so I added in explanation of options! Also, found a way to save 3 skill points and more efficiency with the last few points.
6. yigita and MorningRize2 pointed out the flaws of Insta-Leech negating the full benefits of half of my ascendancies. Gear updates thanks to them!
7. jachuu138 reminded me to put gem lvls on CWDT, imm call and phase run.
8. In 3.5 McPeenSauce noticed that the newly buffed Bringer of Rain is so good, it wasn't worth dropping it for a rare helm and using a 6 Link Belly of the Beast.
9. Apekatt42 suggested going pure physical damage, which ended up being a nice boost to damage as well as making a few other things a little easier! This is why this build is now a pure phys build!
10. Gasp10 suggested Bloodletting node. This would be the perfect node to invest in if you get enough gear with INT so you can unspec those +30 nodes.
11. L2theBR suggest to use Cyclone as a gem swap for faster map clear.
12. Leguleyo suggested Impale Support instead of Conc. the dmg loss is extremely small without losing AoE to help clear speed a ton.