[3.1][HC] Tri Dark Pact Totems ~1M+ DPS~ 8k+ EHP~ Cheap and beginner friendly~ All content viable

I played this build on Hardcore Harbinger until 94 (died to crash) and thought this build was super strong (a lot stronger than what I thought it was going to be when I made the build originally). A lot of people were interested in my build and since I have some time to spare I figured I would finally write a guide on it.

This build is built for general map clearing mainly(getting attack speed for faster shield charge and totem placement speed over damage) but still has very good single target damage.(1M+ dps) It is able to do all content on HHC as well without any issue.

NEW FROM 3.1!:
You can include the new despair curse into the build to make up for the damage loss from the nerf.

Current Tooltip:
If you want to compare your damage with mine, here's my unbuffed(only clarity in hideout) tooltip and offensive stats without concentrated effect

High damage, High mobility, High survivability
Totems can tank damage for you
High hp + mana regen
Cheap and easy to play
Can easily use Bisco's neck
Curse immune
Can do any map mods easily
Still doing damage when evading mechanics

Totems sometimes die quickly
Switching your gear can be hard if exactly capped on resist
Requires you to stand still to get maximum damage output
Requires 3 unique items to work(not very good for SSF)
Bosses that moves a lot can be annoying to deal with

A lot of people think that totem builds are boring because they think that you simply just sit there and wait for your totems to kill things. Well, this build isn't like that at all. You have high damage, high mobility(thanks shield charge) and are tanky. Because of that, you can safely shield charge through monsters without any worry and just place down a totem and be on your way to the next pack of monsters because you know that the 1 totem is going to pretty 1 or 2 shot any packs of monsters. So, in the end, you end up shield charging constantly while putting down a totem for each pack.

For bosses, you have a wither setup that increases the damage you deal by a huge amount(140% at max stacks) if you can cast it long enough(around 3 seconds for max stacks). The goal is to pretty much cast your 3 totems, channel wither and then reposition yourself when needed with shield charge.

Why Scion?:
Pretty simple, it simply is the most efficient out of all the other classes in my opinion.I'll explain the ascendants choices as well.

Why Assassin?: Because it allows you to save a lot of points travelling into shadow tree and since we're going to be crit based with 5% base crit, getting that 1.5% extra base crit chance is very nice.
Why Guardian?: Because it grants us the last 20% reduced curse effectiveness to reach 100%, making curses on you have no downside at all. Some say that you don't need it and that there are better choice but I am going to completely disagree here and here's why:
-Huge resistances boost, making it so you can focus more on either damage or effective hp on your gear.
-While occultist is nice for the damage boost, it requires you to stay fairly close to the monsters and isn't that big of a boost compared to guardian
-Guardian is a bigger damage boost than you'd think with enfeeble on yourself(around 12% more damage on Path of building)
-Extra cast speed/attack speed and block are nice things to have
-Pretty nice in group situation where others are generating charges

Required Uniques:
You have to have these unique items for this build(go buy them)

Early Cheap Gear
Weapon: Brightbeak or 20%+ attack speed rare weapon with spell damage
Shield:Rare shield with life and chance to crit with spells
Gloves:Rare gloves with high life resist + attack speed
Boots:Rare boots with high life and 25%+ movement speed
Belt:Rare belt with high life and res
Helm:Rare helmet with high life and res

Current gear

Gem Setups:
If insanity gloves
Weapon: Golem-Clarity-Concecrated Effect(for quick swap) make sure conc isn't linked with clarity
Gloves: Shield Charge-Faster Attacks-Fortify-Power Charge On Critical
Helmet: Wither-Faster Casting-Increased Duration-Arcane Surge LvL10(make sure you don't level it above this)
Shield: Flame Dash-Faster Casting-Portal
Boots: Immortal Call LvL2-Enfeeble LvL5-Cast When Damage Taken LvL1-Increased Duration
Chest: Dark Pact-Added Chaos Damage-Void Manipulation-Controlled Destruction-Increased Area of Effect(5L)-Increased Critical Strikes(6L)

If no insanity gloves
Helmet: Wither-Faster Casting-Increased Duration-Arcane Surge LvL10(make sure you don't level it above this)
Shield: Flame Dash-Faster Casting-Portal
Boots: Immortal Call LvL2-Enfeeble LvL5-Cast When Damage Taken LvL1-Increased Duration
Chest: Dark Pact-Added Chaos Damage-Void Manipulation-Controlled Destruction-Increased Area of Effect(5L)-Increased Critical Strikes(6L)
Weapon: Shield Charge-Faster Attacks-Fortify
Gloves: Golem-Concentrated Effect(for quick swap)-Clarity(make sure not linked with conc)-Open socket for w/e you want(vaal haste/decoy totem/vaal grace)

Here's what you want on your jewels:
Mandatory:%Increased Maximum Life
Best stats to have in order of best to worse:
1:Attack and Cast Speed
2:Crit multi with spells
3:Attack Speed with X weapon
4:Global crit multi
5:Totem Life
6:Cast speed

You can also use jewels to help cap your resistances(that's what I did)

Passive Skill Tree:

Things you should buy before you start leveling:
Added Chaos Damage, Kikazaru x2, SoulMantle, Self-Flagellation Jewel.
Here are things you should consider buying to make your leveling process easier and faster: Tabula Rasa, Brightbeak, The princess, Gorebreaker, Dusk Toe, Skullhead(high all res), Lifesprig and the frost bolt jewel. These items are in order of most impactful on your leveling experience to least impactful.

Leveling Process:
Level 1-12: Frostbolt with the jewel if you have it
Level 12-31: Sunder with Gorebreaker in main hand and The Princess in off hand. If you don't have these weapons, just use 2 high dps weapons for sunder.
Level 20: Equip Brightbeak in your mainhand instead of Gorebreaker
Level 31: Switch to Dark Pact totems.(Make sure you allocate the "Ancestral Bond" Keystone on the skill tree) 4L to 6L is: Dark Pact-Spell Totem-Added Chaos-Void Manipulation-Controlled Destruction-Increased Area of Effect.
Level 35-38: You can start considering doing the first lab. Your first ascendancy choice will be: Guardian
Level X-49: Rush Chamber of Innocence and farm there until 49
Level 49: Equip Soul Mantle, 2x Kikazaru and Self-Flagellation Jewel
Level 49-73: Rush Oasis and farm there until 73
Level 60: You can start considering doing both Cruel lab and Merciless Lab (getting assassin ascendancy)
Level 73: Consider buying all your gear right now
Level 73+: Finish Act 10 and start mapping

Bandits & Pantheon:
Bandits: Help Allira for easy gearing(less resist needed) kill all for +2 skill points(more life nodes)

Major God:

Minor God:

End Game Stats:
-1.5M+ Shaper DPS
-600-700 HP Regen(even more when stationary)
-350+ Mana Regen
-200%+ attack speed for shield charge
-6k+ life 2k+ Mana 800+ ES


Path of Building link:

Why are you not using clear mind jewel? Rare jewels with cast speed attack speed + %life are a better choice(tankier + faster shield charge) + 100% not worth it with
What about lvl 1 Clarity on blood magic + clear mind jewel? While it is a cheap option for a jewel, you end up losing ~180hp (7% life on jewel + clarity on life) and attack speed for faster shield charge while gaining barely any damage vs a 2 prop(life + attack/cast speed) or any damage(life+ attack/cast speed + crit multi). Would not recommend unless you are too lazy to shop for a good jewel.
Would Tukohama's Fortress be a good shield to use? No because the shield gives Blood Magic, making it so that you end up losing all your mana > No more Mind over Matter = 2k Less effective HP. You also end up losing arcane surge in the process since you can no longer spend any mana.
What about hierophant instead of guardian? While the hierophant might provide with more consistency against guardians and shaper, your general map clearing and defences gets reduced significantly by going hierophant instead of guardians. Which makes it not worth going UNLESS all you want to do is farm shaper.(can just spend 5 regret to switch to hierophant at that point)
Controlled Destruction on a crit build? Controlled Destruction does not reduce your total crit chance(making you unable to crit) but instead decreases the base crit(5% base crit for dark pact).Gaining the spell damage multiplier far outshines the loss of 6.5% crit chance(5% base from dark pact and 1.5% extra from assassin ascendant)

Last edited by FleepQc on Jan 7, 2018, 8:12:20 AM
Last bumped on Mar 21, 2018, 6:20:36 PM
Always love a DP totem build and I've been looking for an excuse to play scion. I'm prolly gonna give it a go this weekend. Guide is very descriptive as well.

Whats your opinion on this vs hierophant dp totems? At first glance this seems like a less eHP version but has much higher dps and an easier time fitting wither in for bosses (I loathe bossing on my hiero dp totems). The increased damage from self curses seems really interesting in itself. Looks pretty fun!
Last edited by Syche22 on Sep 13, 2017, 3:25:32 PM
The damage on this build is high enough to do even shaper really quick, making it so that you don't need more damage.(that is why I spec for attack speed and totem placement speed over dps nodes) I also don't see how hiero would be more damage but maybe i'm missing something
Oh sorry maybe I wasn't clear. I was saying the scion version looks like a much higher dps version not the other way around. Hiero just has more ehp because its MoM perk and higher mana thats all. I didn't know if you knew anything about the other build just to make a comparison. Then again I can probably just let you and myself know after giving this a go. Only downside is I have to figure out a way to 6L a Soul Mantle :)
A 5L is plenty to deal with all the content.
Awesome build, i really enjoy it and im not a totem lover.
Thank you.
Build based on https://ru.pathofexile.com/forum/view-thread/24332 ?
yadji wrote:
Build based on https://ru.pathofexile.com/forum/view-thread/24332 ?

Probably there some build also quite similar to it
Didn't base the build on any other guides. Someone in my twitch chat suggested me dp totem with soul mantle and after seeing the potential on PoB, I decided to go with this.
Last edited by FleepQc on Sep 21, 2017, 2:19:33 AM
Got lvl 70 GC totem dude. How is this different in clearspeed or bosses?

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