[3.5] Kitava's Thirst Builds - Flame Surge - Life or ES - 3M+ Elder DPS - Buffed again LUL

Update - December 6th - Betrayal

Good things coming, this time I'll go back to the Flame Surge build, most likely with a twist.

BRANDS BRANDS BRANDS

Let's recap :
-Storm Brand : another way to trigger EE similar to Orb of Storms.
-Armageddon Brand : another way to ignite in the helmet without using Herald of Ash, saving mana for MoM.
-Malachai's Artifice is buffed, allowing permanant EE procs with Storm Brand or Orb of Storms.

Build Changes :
-EE significantly more reliable.
-New links on helmet :
---Glacial Cascade - Armageddon Brand - Combustion - Immolate
---If there's too much conflict between the brands, I'll use Orb of Storms.
-No changes on the skill tree, except moving 3 points from EE to Runesmith (Witch-Shadow area) : http://poeurl.com/cad4

For information : here is the previous build I made :
LIFE 50% MoM Flame Surge/Glacial Cascade - PoB Link - lvl 90

GET HYPED


[This thread evolved since 3.0 from the original life Flame Surge Build to several builds around Kitava's Thirst, please enjoy]

Hello !

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20 sec build summary

Spoiler
7-8k effective hp - 6L Flame Surge triggering spells in helmet :


Everything is designed to further support Flame Surge
+Ignite (with Herald of Ash)
+Combustion
+Elemental Equilibrium
+AoE clear

Result = tons of damage.

LIFE 50% MoM Flame Surge/Glacial Cascade - PoB Link - lvl 90

Blade Vortex variant : more mobile, less single target damage.

LIFE 50% MoM Blade Vortex/Glacial Cascade/Bladefall - PoB Link - lvl 94
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VIDEOS
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Basic Gameplay - T13 High Gardens Map - Hexproof/Vulnerability/Enfeeble
Basic Gameplay - T16 UGS 153/59 - Blade Vortex Variation - Glacial Cascade/Bladefall

Boss Fight - The Shaper (featuring EE, dumb deaths and a bug !)
Boss Fight - Guardian of the Phoenix
Boss Fight - T13 Amanamu, Liege of the Lightless

Boss Fight - T15 Beachhead
Boss Fight - T15 Shaped Courtyard - Unid 179/40
Boss Fight - Atziri
Boss Fight - T14 Palace Map


More boss/guardian fights to come !



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PROS/CONS
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+The build is fun. If it's not fun, why bother?
+Flame Surge : Excellent single target DPS
+Decent clear speed/AoE
+Decent surviability
+Active gameplay
+You get to play a unique build !
+Gets a buff every patch

-Not recommended if you like mindless farming.
-Can be expensive to work well in endgame.
-Cannot handle elemental reflect maps.
-Relies heavily on mana,low/no regen is doable, but difficult without Watcher's Eye.
-RNG may/will sometimes be annoying, I wouldn't recommend for HC.
-Decent mobility, but could be better because of the staff.

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Build Mechanics - Core : Kitava's Thirst/Increased Mana Cost
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The build is around Flame Surge as a single target DPS source, and AoE igniting spells :



Besides dealing tons of damage, Flame Surge is also among the fastest spells in the game (equaled only by Dark Pact and Blade Vortex), which benefits greatly this build.

For this build to work, you need :



The build enabler, this helmet can trigger ALL spells you put in there (not twice the same gem though) when you spend at least 100 Mana.

The spells will be useful to ignite enemies, we will look into that later.

This is when it gets tricky, you need to actually spend the mana, using a skill with 100+ Mana Cost, using anything that can prevent actual mana spending (like Vaal Clarity) will NOT work.

To increase mana consumption, you can use those, depending on your Flame Surge mana cost before the increase :



For ES builds, both gloves are fine, but Voidbringer mana cost rolls between 40% and 80%, so with those items you can tweak your mana cost to have values that aren't too high.

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LIFE BUILDS ONLY Build Mechanics - Extension Items : Self-Ignite/Martyr of Innocence
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The build can be extended to self-ignite, using these two items :



When you ignite an enemy, you take fire damage, which can ignite you because of the ring.
You get Life Leech, so you can leech without Warlord's Mark, and bonus Cast Speed from the ring.

You can benefit even more from self-igniting :



Fire damage (the amulet fire damage counts as a hit).
Freeze/Chill immune !
And bonus Fire Penetration on block, which is always good, especially against bosses.

The Fire damage for spells will also be useful to ignite using any spell (like Vortex).

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Passive Tree / Leveling / Bandits / Ascendancy / Pantheon
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Bandits : Help Alira (Mana Regen, Crit Multiplier, Resists)

LIFE 50% MoM 3.3 Flame Surge/Glacial Cascade - PoB Link - lvl 90

Previous Leagues
LIFE 50% MoM 3.2 Flame Surge/Magma Orb - PoB Link - lvl 90
ES 3.2 Flame Surge/Magma Orb - PoB Link - lvl 90
LIFE 3.1 Flame Surge/Magma Orb - PoB Link - lvl 92

Leveling : I leveled with Frostbolt + two Frozen Trail Jewels until maps. I took damage and life (or ES) progressively while getting closer to AoE nodes.

If you are rich, get 2 Poet's Pen, put Glacial Cascade in one, Arc/Lightning Warp in the other, rush 2 intel Threshold Jewels and EE through the Scion's ES wheel. Spam Silver/Quicksilver flask and destroy everything until maps. Poet's Pen are imbalanced.

Ascendancy : Weave The Arcane is mandatory if you want to start the build.
ES Weave the Arcane > Ghost Dance > Escape Artist > Harness the Void
LIFE Weave the Arcane > Patient Reaper > Swift Killer > Harness the Void

For ES, Patient Reaper is useful instead of Harness the Void while levelling to help sustaining.

Pantheon : Lunaris or Solaris, Abberath for ES, Shakari for Life.

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Gem Setup - Kitava's Thirst
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This will be your primary source of AoE DPS, and ignite.

Improve Ignite chance and single target damage with :


You can use whatever spell you like, any strong AoE spell is fine, as long as you can Ignite to boost Flame Surge's damage. Herald of Ash now allows physical spells to ignite, and spreads ignite with overkill damage.



For example, Glacial Cascade + Herald of Ash offers both the ability to ignite with the convenience of an imbalanced spell.


Vortex is still good although since the AoE nerf it is not as strong. The chill effect is great against enemies.
Magma Orb is another good aoe skill, and ignite source. Though you need to sacrifice 1 or 2 jewels.

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Gem Setup - Kitava's Thirst - ELEMENTAL EQUILIBRIUM
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This setup sacrifices very slightly the aoe spells to further support Flame Surge, with this you can push the DPS on Shaper to 2M. Of course it is unusable with Martyr of Innocence.
Using imbalanced skills like Glacial Cascade compensates for the lack of area of effect.



Let's do some calculations :

For EE to work, we need to have around as much Fire hits as non-Fire.
Using Spell Echo, and with enough cast speed from gear, tree, and Trickster ascendancy, we have approximately :

3 Flame Surge Uses (=mana spendings) to trigger helmet
6 FS hits
1 GC hit (sometimes 2)

Let's say we do not proc more than once per second, because we have shitty RNG and low cast speed.

Each proc delivers :
At least 1 Arc
1 Ball Lightning at 5 hits/sec

On top of that, we have Orb of Storms : around 4 hits/sec with cast speed.
And Lightning Golem !

Total in 1 second : 7 Fire hits, 9 non-Fire hits, assuming bad RNG/cast speed/no golem.
All those hits are spread rather evenly to be sure to maximise EE's efficiency.
Even if sometimes FS may hit twice without a non-Fire proc, -50% resistance most of the time is worth +25% some of the time.
I recorded myself on bosses, you can check how often you can see "Vulnerable to X" different types of resists.

TL;DR : go rekt some bosses.

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Gem Setup - Flame Surge
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Currently on 5-Link Martyr of Innocence :


With Fevered Mind, Mana Cost is 106, so we can trigger Kitava's Thirst.

If you have Pledge of Hands, swap Spell Echo for Faster Casting, or Immolate if you have mana issues.

Current 6L Pledge of Hands setup :


If you use Elemental Equilibrium, replace Fire Penetration by Controlled Destruction.



Don't forget to optimise your mana cost to get as close to 100 as possible.

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How to manage Life/ES, Mana, Stuns
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Through the leagues, I tried to keep this build flexible, and to adapt it to the different changes or personal preferences.
This is a quick comparison of methods to sustain Life or ES, and Mana, and avoid stuns.

Life
Corrupted helmet : Best choice, sacrifices an enchant that is too difficult to find anyway

Elder rare amulet : Great choice, can have other stats - Difficult to find/expensive

Eye of Innocence + Mokou's Embrace : Good leech/damage - Lack of surviability, subject to bad RNG

Warlord's Mark CWDT : Reliable, End Charges, mana free - Cannot run Hexproof, will NOT trigger if taking DoT

Warlord's Mark Blasphemy : Reliable, End Charges - Cannot run Hexproof, one third of mana reserved

Sources of 0.2% fire leech : corrupt amulet implicit, Doryani's belt, etc : easy to find on Eye of Chayula, cheap


ES
Corrupted helmet : Best choice, sacrifices an enchant that is too difficult to find anyways

Elder rare amulet : Great choice, can have other stats - Difficult to find/expensive, no Eye of Chayula (stun immunity)

Watcher's Eye (Discipline ES on hit) : good complement, not to be relied upon

Essence Surge + Watcher's Eye (Discipline faster start) + Recharge Speed : very fast, uncapped compared to leech, good combined with lots of evasion - unreliable on boss fights with sustained damage, need ignite immune flask

Warlord's Mark CWDT : Reliable, End Charges, mana free - Cannot run Hexproof, will NOT trigger if taking DoT

Warlord's Mark Blasphemy : Reliable, End Charges - Cannot run Hexproof, one third of mana reserved


Mana
Weave the Arcane : must have

Watcher's Eye (+ Clarity Weave the Arcane like) : really good, enables no regen maps, only lvl 1 Clarity required (approx +250 mana freed) - can be expensive, requires good mana pool (2-3k total)

Warlord's Mark CWDT : Reliable, End Charges, mana free - Cannot run Hexproof, will NOT trigger if taking DoT, may not trigger against bosses

Warlord's Mark Blasphemy : Reliable, End Charges - Cannot run Hexproof, one third of mana reserved

Divine Mana Flask : Good ol' mana flask, will never let you down if used properly


Stuns (for ES builds)
Skyforth : Best choice for maxing DPS

Kaom's Roots : Good choice, reliable, cheap, lots of life - no sockets, poor mobility

Escape Artist + lab enchant on boots : cheaper, good choice for DPS too

Eye of Chayula : Best choice for reliability

Brine King : meh.


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LIFE 50% MoM Blade Vortex/Glacial Cascade/Bladefall - PoB Link - lvl 94
- Gear / Gem / Flask Setup
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Pros compared to the Flame Surge Build :
+MOBILTY HOLY SHIT IT FEELS GOOD NOT TO USE A STAFF
+Clear speed
+Delve friendly
+Lots of room for improvement because of the conversion/extra damage mechanics

Cons :
-Less single target DPS, but still acceptable.
-Probably more expensive to max out because of the stat sticks.





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LIFE 50% MoM Flame Surge/Glacial Cascade - PoB Link - lvl 90
- Gear / Gem / Flask Setup
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Older versions (3.0 to 3.3)
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LIFE 3.2 Gear / Gem / Flask Setup - 50% MoM variation
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Spoiler
Thanks to Xavyer for this suggestion. This one pushes Mind Over Matter at 50% using Cloak of Defiance and Watcher's Eye. The results are really good.




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ES 3.2 Gear / Gem / Flask Setup
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Spoiler


Watcher's Eye allows you to run low/no regen maps. Leech comes from amulet.




Good alternative, I used to equip it, better evasion/dodge, but less shield, and rolling blue sockets is very hard above 4.


Cheaper than Skyforth, although the latter is much cheaper now. Stun immunity enchant is recommended.

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LIFE 3.0 Gear / Gem / Flask Setup
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Spoiler
Older version of the build, but still good.






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LIFE 3.0 Gear / Gem Setup - Kaom's Heart variation
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Spoiler
Increased survivability, can handle reflect/volatile flameblood with proper flask use.


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3.1 Low Life variation - PoB Links
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Spoiler
Abyss league lacked Zerphi's flask, which makes sustaining damage more difficult, especially without many %life nodes available.
Tried out energy shield, with 2 different versions, and it works quite well :

3.1 Flame Surge - PoB Link
3.1 Blade Vortex/EK - PoB Link





+Better surviability
+Much better mobility
-DPS is lowered, but still good

The Blade Vortex version is phys/chaos, but with good shaped items (%phys added), it has so much more potential.

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Previously asked questions
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Spoiler
Why/Why not Pledge of Hands vs. Martyr of Innocence ?

+More DPS
+More Mana/Mana regen which is good with MoM
+Elemental Equilibrium available !

-No more Freeze/Chill Immunity
-You will need Fire Spells, or added fire to spells from another source to be able to ignite, like Cold to Fire, or Magma Orb. Careful if you're using EE.

Why not use RF to ignite, like a decent person?

-I find having a triggered AoE spell much better for clearing
-This build uses ignite, but you actually deal very low burning damage, this would force you to clear everything using Flame Surge (bad idea)
-Running RF using a staff instead of a shield is much harder
-Black Hole Vortex is so much cooler !

Is there something that will help to survive instead of Zerphi's ?

Atziri's Acuity.

Does Weave The Arcane mana regen on skill use triggers of each of the spells in the helmet or only from the main 6L spell?

It's only the main spell that triggers Weave the Arcane. When you see "use a skill", it means literally pressing the button.

Escape artist seems essential for survivability with a body armour with a good amount of evade, but what do you think of the other nodes of ascendant?

I originally designed this build as a boss killer, so I try to avoid on kill effects.
If you wanna improve clear speed instead, you can take Swift Killer instead of Harness the Void.
Patient Reaper has nice effects to increase leech, but I think it's not worth the points. Prolonged Pain is irrelevant to this build.

Does the current build with ES use the self-ignite mechanic ?

Unfortunately self ignite is off the table with ES builds so I can recharge.

When would you advise to switch to CI?

When you feel you cannot sustain chaos damage on your life pool. Be sure to have at least 2.5-3k shield. Patient Reaper is also good to sustain shuild at first.

Is there a particular reason you run both Arc and Ball Lightning instead of putting a support to boost all three skills?
The point of EE is to have at least as much non-fire hits as fire hits per second (see the EE section of the guide)

To make it simple :
If I socket a support gem in my helmet, I only increase Magma Orb's damage.
If I socket a lot of non-fire, fast-hitting spells, I support both FS and MO.

I have a 5L Pledge of Hand with fire penetration instead of CD or Immolate (I don't know if its better)

Fire Penetration is almost always inferior if you have EE, it begins to be relevant if the target has at least 65-70% fire res. I'd replace it with Immolate, then CD on 6th link.

Do you think your Watcher's Eye makes a difference ?

ES on hit is nice, but not really a must have, however the Clarity one is really good, and it might be cheaper just to look for one mod.
Also, keep an eye out for other mods, like extra mana as shield, this one is worth a lot

I took Patient Reaper for easier leveling, and then I switched to Harness the Void when I felt confident enough. You don't need the extra DPS until T13/14 maps.


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Kitava's Thirst is awesome, try out other versions !
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"The Chaos Lasher" by xposthofx - Berserker/Apep's Rage version
"Kitava's Spirit" by Darkblitz9 - Trickster Blade Vortex/Apep's Rage



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Thanks for reading, I will update the guide with my progress, with more videos to come.

Cheers !
Last edited by Sarodh1 on Dec 8, 2018, 5:28:21 PM
Last bumped on Dec 7, 2018, 1:29:25 PM
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Updates
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2017
16/08 : Now using Zerphi's Last Breath.
17/08 : New video, trying out 5L Pledge of Hands.
18/08 : Added a short part of Beachhead boss fight.
19/08 : Added Magma Orb, updated gear.
20/08 : New T15 video, and Beachhead boss fight.
29/08 - 1M DPS Editon : Back with 6L Pledge of Hands !

I M M O L A T E








03/09 : Updated build.
04/09 : Added Atziri video.
07/09 - Shaperoni Pepperoni Edition : Added EE variant, and Shaper video.
16/09 - Carpet Bombing Edition : Added Dying Sun and +2 Magma Orb Chain enchant.
18/09 - Return of the King Edition : Added Kaom's Heart variation.
27/09 - Definitive Edition : Added Path of Building Link.

2018
19/01 - "ES was fine all along" Edition : Back with ES builds, Flame Surge and Blade Vortex.
01/03 - "This is a buff" Edition : News from 3.2 update.
29/03 : Guide updated for ES build.
11/04 : Added Skyforth and Aspect of the Spider, guide updated.
11/06 : Added 50% MoM variant, and a short gameplay video.
01/06 : News from 3.3 update.
17/06 : Road to 3M Edition : Small updates for the new 3.3 version

C O M B U S T I O N










27/06 : Added Amanamu bossfight.
01/07 : Final build update for Incursion.
17/10 : Delve update with BV variation.
06/12 : News from Betrayal update.

Previous updates in 3.4
Update - October 17th
Back in business after a long pause, for Delve I decided to make a Blade Vortex variation, with GC/Bladefall in helmet.
Currently at level 93, 8k effective hp, around 1M Elder DPS (1.2M with Hatred, but you sacrifice almost 2k effective hp).
I killed Uber Elder, I'm farming flawlessly T16s, and I'm currently at depth 340 with no issues.

Pros compared to the Flame Surge Build :
+MOBILTY HOLY SHIT IT FEELS GOOD NOT TO USE A STAFF
+Clear speed
+Delve friendly
+Lots of room for improvement because of the conversion/extra damage mechanics

Cons :
-Less single target DPS, but still acceptable.
-Probably more expensive to max out because of the stat sticks.

LIFE 50% MoM Blade Vortex/Glacial Cascade/Bladefall - PoB Link - lvl 93


Gear



Of course, the classic Flame Surge build I made in Incursion is still good :

LIFE 50% MoM Flame Surge/Glacial Cascade - PoB Link - lvl 90

As usual, I'll keep the guide updated with my progress.

Enjoy !

Update - August 30th - Delve
Killed Uber Elder before the end of Incursion, forgot to record it. ^^'

The Flame Dash buff is really nice (Thanks GGG™), otherwise there's nothing new for Delve, build is the same as before. The buff streak is over!

Same as before, I'll update the guide with my progress. I'll start the league later in the month though.

Passive tree updated for 3.4 (minor changes in the Templar area) :
LIFE 50% MoM Flame Surge/Glacial Cascade - PoB Link - lvl 90

Previous updates in 3.3
Update - July 1st
Level 90 - 3.5M Shaper DPS with frenzy charges, 7.4k effective HP.
Added the equipment to the build guide.

LIFE 50% MoM Flame Surge/Glacial Cascade - PoB Link - lvl 90

Update - June 27
Level 89, farming T16s easily. Added a +2 AoE helmet to boost GC's damage.
Still some upgrades to go.
I also added a lich fight in the Videos section.

LIFE 50% MoM Flame Surge/Glacial Cascade - PoB Link - lvl 89

Also testing a variant with Mark of the Shaper and 0.5% leech helmet, increased surviability with no dps loss :

LIFE 50% MoM Flame Surge/Glacial Cascade - PoB Link - lvl 89

Update - June 18
Started the character yesterday, currently at level 83, 2.4M Shaper DPS with lots of room to improve.

Dropped Magma Orb for Combustion, and it is indeed very OP.
Orb of Storms feels great with Faster Casting, ticking fast.
Ball lightning goes well with GC now.
Corrupted helmets can now have 0.5% fire leech (ilvl 50 min) !

The build is still rough right now and will be fine-tuned in the next days.


LIFE 50% MoM Flame Surge/Glacial Cascade - PoB Link - lvl 84

Update - June 1st - Incursion
Massive buffs incoming :
-25% more damage with Flame Surge
-Buffs to Orb of Storms and Ball Lightning which will improve EE significantly
-Buffs to Magma Orb and Arc for clear speed
-Combustion Support

Same as before, I'll update the guide with my progress.

(GGG pls buff Flame Dash)

TL;DR 3.2 Path of Building links - still usable
LIFE 50% MoM Flame Surge/Magma Orb - PoB Link - lvl 90

ES Flame Surge/Magma Orb - PoB Link - lvl 90
Last edited by Sarodh1 on Dec 6, 2018, 12:51:11 PM
Awesome build and very unique. I've tried several Shadow builds in 3.0. Yours is the best by far. Thanks.

Great work!!!!
Thank you very much ! :)

I'm looking for other ways to improve it, I am open to suggestions.
easy way to add fire to spells without the staff, is just use anger aura
my builds:
- COLB (Cast On Last Breath) first ever build: https://www.pathofexile.com/forum/view-thread/1632595
- the Flash: https://www.pathofexile.com/forum/view-thread/1367774
- the oro's bridle build: https://www.pathofexile.com/forum/view-thread/1409823
Did you kill Atziri with that build?
"
The_x_ile wrote:
easy way to add fire to spells without the staff, is just use anger aura

Yeah, I was about to try a CoH setup on Orb of Storms, that would leave enough mana to replace Blasphemy by Anger. However, it's an additionnal 15% mana reserved, that is a lot of mana that is lost.

Magma Orb is quite good too.

"
dalieth wrote:
Did you kill Atziri with that build?

Of course ! This build is designed to melt bosses like Atziri, Izaro, or guardians. I'll make some videos when I have the time.

Atziri is fairly easy, if you're careful not to hit the mirror.
Last edited by Sarodh1 on Sep 4, 2017, 10:21:33 PM
Thanks for the answer. The build is really nice and unique! :)
Bumping, added Shaper video.
Cool build! Have you thought about using that sword that heals when you get ignited? Might be good for this build since you can use whirling blades, fortify and also the added healing. Or do you think it's tanky enough?

Also what weapon do you recommend now? Pledge? Is the EE version the best?
Last edited by dantven on Sep 11, 2017, 3:13:55 AM

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