[3.1] ED/Blight trickster (shaper/HC/SSF viable)
Good day ladies and gents, and welcome to my essence drain/blight build guide.
In this guide i will explain the basics of this build as a league starter, as well as gear upgrades required to turn this build into an endgame boss killer (shaper/guardians viable).
Build Summary :
This build revolves around a as high level essence drain gem as possible, and increase it's damage by stacking spreading rot jewels, dispair, and wither stacks.
It's survivability revolves around our ability to run around and manually avoid attacks, while our dps is still taking it's effect for over 4 seconds without having to re-cast anything.
We also have Mind over matter, and a high life, energy shield, and mana pool.
- Can clear any game content with the right variations : uber lab, uber atziri, shaper, all 4 guardians. WARNING: this build cannot clear hall of the grandmasters, unless you use scorching ray instead of blight on Chaos Inauculation ennemies.
- Can run absolutely any map mod. No mana regen? trickster gives 10% max mana on using a skill. Reflect? our damage is entirely chaos.
- Can start at beginning of the league on a 5 chaos budget.
- Solo Self Found VERY viable
- Very good clearspeed.
- Requires medium-high currency investment to deal acceptable single target damage.
- not a zoom zoom 300% movement speed offscreen killer build...
1. Skill tree :
This build requires 2 spreading rot jewels. You get one for free in act 6. This build is very much SSF viable, and you can easily acquire a second one by making a second character.
One is equipped in the jewel slot heading towards the marauder life wheel, and the other is equipped in the jewel socket in the witch side of the tree.
Ascendency we go trickster, as it overall gives us the best dps, grants us 10% mana gain on skill use, free costing movement skills, and 70% increased life and mana regen if we killed recently !
2. Gem Links :
Essence drain : Essence drain + swift affliction + void manipulation + efficacy + pierce OR empower + controlled destruction.
Pierce is to be used early on for the budget version. Once acquired a +1 body armour and a lvl 3 or 4 empower, then switch over to empower for a massive dps boost. I will explain more further down.
Blight (gloves) : Blight - Storm Barrier - Efficacy - void manipulation
Blight (allelopathy) : Swift affliction - efficacy - void manipulation - controlled destruction
The unique gloves , allelopathy, give us a "socketed gems are supported by lvl 22 blight", as well as some AOE and some damage over time bonus. more on this in the gear section.
Wither(in weapon or shield): Wither - spell totem - faster casting
Contagion (in helmet or boots): Contagion - faster casting - Increased area of effect - Arcane Surge.
Make sure you do not over-level arcane surge so it's trigger cost is not higher than the mana cost of your contagion.
Movement skill(in weapon or shield): Shield charge OR whirling blades - faster attacks - fortify
Others: in remaining slots : Portal gem, Stone golem, and blasphemy - temp chains.
We go dual curse, but use temp chains as blasphemy. We do not run double curse on blasphemy as we want as much unreserved mana as possible, and dispair is later provided by the witchfire brew.
3. Budget build gear :
To start up with, the only thing that this build requires is any 6 link body armour, most likely tabula rasa.
For helmet and gloves, look for : life, mana, and resistances.
For boots, look for life, mana, movement speed.
For rings and amulet, look for life, mana and resistances
For the weapon, look for a DAGGER, with spell damage, and optionnally some attack speed.
For the shield, look for spell damage, life, mana, and resistances.
At this stage, all you want it to cap your resistances while increasing your life and mana pool. Early on,, dps will be sufficient with only a tabula rasa and a lvl 19 essence drain gem, and will easily carry you through to t10 maps. To clear hard game contents, and all the way up to shaper/guardians, some substantial upgrades will be required.
4. Endgame gear
- Helmet : Your best helmet should have : high energy shield %, t1 life, t1 mana and resistances. Our energy shield gets increased by our body armour, so having some on gear improves our overall life pool.
- Gloves : Allelopathy. Awesome gloves for blight, gives as much dps as a 6 link blight setup, on your gloves !
- Boots : Best possible : high movement speed, t1 life, t1 mana, and resistances. Atziri's steps can also be used, as they grant us more spell block chance, however they limit our overall life pool.
- Rings : The absolute very best for rings, is to craft your own two-tone rings with scorn essences, which give increased chaos damage on rings. Then the obvious life, mana, and resistances.
- Amulet : You guessed it, life, mana, resistances
- BodyArmour : From my experience, the very best body armour for this build, would be the skin of the loyal, simple robe. This body armour grants +1 level to socketed gems, which in turn gives +1 level again from a higher level empower. Altogether, in this body armour, with a lvl 21 essence drain, lvl 4 empower, we end up having a lvl 26 essence drain !
- Shield : A high spell damage Rathpith. I think this shield is very underrated. % max life, spell damage, and block spell damage chance. If you prefer though, you can use a high ES, high spell damage, with life and resists shield, but rathpith is way cheaper and better for survivability.
- Jewels : 2x spreading rot. For the other rare jewels : life %, chaos damage%, damage over time %, or even chaos resistance are good options.
- Belt / abyss jewels : For the belt, a stygian vice with life, mana and resists. As for the abyss jewels, not many rolls help us dps wise, but a life + mana + increased damage over time if you killed recently/while holding a shield shouldn't be too expensive
-Weapon (for mapping) : Breath of the council sceptre. This weapon is NOT the best for single target dps. However, it gives us area of effect, and some skill effect duration, which makes it better than the other option overall for Mapping.
-Weapon (bossing) : For bossing however, there is a better option. A decay sai dagger. Sai daggers grant us an extra 6% block, part of which is added to our spell block thanks to rathpith. I use a delirium essence on it, which grants it "hits with this weapon apply decay for 10 seconds". We then craft spell damage with catarina lvl 6 if we didn't get lucky and get spell damage when using the essence.
now I know that decay got recently nerfed, however having done multiple tests myself, counting in the fact that decay gets buffed by the supported gems affecting essence drain, which then gets multiplied further by spreading rot and wither stacks, the damage boost from this is vastly superior than the 100% increased chaos damage granted by the breath of the council. This added to the fact that we can easily get 50-70% spell damage on it, and the extra block chance, makes it in my opinion a vastly superior ( and very much cheaper) weapon.
It also lets us use whirling blades as well, which you cannot use with a sceptre!
5. Flasks :
I recommend to use :
- one life flask, instant or bubbling.
- Witchfire brew. This flask is AMAZING. it grants dispair on blasphemy, which reduces ennemies chaos resistance by 29%! it also grants us a MORE damage over time bonus.
- quicksilver flask : with increaed duration and more movement speed.
- Silver flask : with increased duration and either immune to chill or to bleed. This is required to face uber izaro or physical damage dealing bosses (minotaur>)
- Sulphur flask : this is used for the consecrated ground, as well as the damage boost. On this build , we benefit greatly from any form of life regen. Increased duration, and either immune to chill or bleed.
6. Defensive mechanics :
This build is great at staying alive.
First of all, on bosses, it allows us to move around while our dps is taking effect. We can stand still and spam blight to increase our damage dealt but if required, we can easily manually avoid attacks all the while our essence drain is still decimating the boss.
On top of that, we have a 5% or so life regen from passive tree, we use the stone golem for a flat life regen, and both of those get multiplied by the 70% more life/mana regen from the trickster ascendency.
We also regenerate some of the essence drain damage dealt back as life, which also gets multiplied by the effect of being a trickster.
Overall, when running maps, if feels as-if we have a permanent life flask on.
When running the endgame version of the build, we also benefit from a 30 - 35% chance to block attacks, half of which is added as spell block.
We also can achieve a 6-7k life pool (combined between energy shield and life), and 30% of all damage received is added to mana.
7. Offensive mechanics :
When running maps: Move around with shield charge / whirling blades, which benefits from a MORE attack speed when you used a movement skill recently from trickster. When encountering a pack of mobs, cast contagion first, followed by a cast of essence drain to the nearest monster to you. Decay and essence drain both kick in, instantly killing the monster. Then essence drain + contagion starts spreading to nearby ennemies, starting a chain reaction which results in all monsters in line of sight, and sometimes several screens away, to vanish off the face of the earth ! Keep moving while the chain reaction occurs and move between packs of monsters as quickly as possible.
On bosses: Start by casting the wither totem. use witchfire and sulphur, and cast essence drain on the ennemy. Now get closer and apply 1-2 stacks of blight to apply the spreading rot jewels' effect. IF it is a boss you can facetank, you can now stand still and spam blight and re-apply essence drain every 4.8 seconds. If it is a boss you can NOT facetank, then run around, and re-apply wither totem as it dies-expires, and re-apply essence drain and 1-2 stacks of wither every 3.5 seconds.
TODOLIST: make videos
Last edited by cartouche_2 on Jan 14, 2018, 2:16:56 PM
Last bumped on Jul 5, 2018, 12:07:10 PM
on Dec 27, 2017, 5:28:33 AM
PoB link is not working, can you check that...
Thanks for the guide, I am running ED/Cont build (w/o Blight) and I am having single target issues, I can clear bosses up to T14, so for example, Shaped Vault boss takes longtime but I can tank it fine. Do you think with your build, my single target would be much better (char name = FacelessAbyss?
Also, I noticed if I drop my Mindspiral helmet, my Mana goes super fast and the build does not seem to function without it, specially since we are Shield Charging through enemies and we should tank a lot of hits. Without this Helmet, how can we recover Mana fast (how your build handles Mana generation)?
ill check the pob and fix it asap.
as for the single target dps, it will most definitely improve.
On my POB, my ED dps with flasks, charges and dispair on is around 180k.
If I then add the 50% effect of spreading rot jewels, some stacks of wither and 20 stacks of blight, i get over 500k dps :-)
As for the mana issues, most of my mana returns come from the trickster ascendancy that returns 10% of your max mana with 20% chance when using a skill.
This works when using movement skills, which doesn't cost us mana. You can literally spam whirling blades / shield charge and after a couple uses your mana goes back up.
ANother factor is that, the more mana you have, the more mana regen you get. Getting mana on your gear is very important.
It is also quite important to balance your life pool with your mana pool.
If your mana unreserved is much less than 30% of your life, you will run out of mana before you run out of life, ending up in situations where you run around with no mana left not being able to cast spells.
Another viable option if it would be too expensive right now to fix your mana pool, is to run hybrid flasks instead of life flasks.
Their life return is a bit worse than divine life flasks, but they return mana at the same time.
EDIT: pastebin pob link fixed :)
Last edited by cartouche_2 on Dec 27, 2017, 7:14:58 PM
on Dec 27, 2017, 6:12:39 PM
For this ED/Cont build, what is the order of below damage properties (which one provide more damage output in sequence, so we know what property to prioritize over others):
Spell Damage increase
Chaos Damage increase
Damage over time increase
Flat Chaos damage to Spells
EDIT: One more thing, what skill is doing the killing, ED or Cont? so we can attach Item Rarity Support Gem to it.
Last edited by SalanMH3 on Jan 5, 2018, 12:12:14 AM
by "cont" , do you mean blight?
since you stack a lot of damage over time and chaos damage on passives and jewels already, the best value rolls on gear is spell damage.
chaos damage to spell would not do anything for this build at all, they wouldnt get added to the damage over time.
on bosses where you stand still and spam blight, at 20 stacks blight ends up doing more damage than essence drain.
On bosses where you run around, essence drain does the work.
I do believe though, that item rarity support would not work, as the skill does not "hit" the target to finish it, the damage over time does, and i am pretty sure item rarity would have no effect.
on Jan 5, 2018, 7:47:46 PM
Sorry, I meant Contagion skill. It is bummer that Item Rarity support won't work; I found Shaper gloves with Faster Casting support, so I was thinking to link Item Rarity to Contagion skill, since it may not work, what support skill do you think is worth linking in that case?
contagion isn't meant to deal damage, it's there to spread essence drain.
The gem links are in the guide itself, but contagion - area of effect - faster casting - arcane surge
on Jan 6, 2018, 9:15:45 AM
Yeah, but what I meant, I found a Shaper Gloves with Faster Casting support built-in, so I was wondering what other support gem to link it to Contagion?
Note: I have not invested into Blight yet.
I also asked in Reddit about Item Rarity and I got below response:
"For item rarity, when working with dots it is hard to say which part did the killing, so the rule apply as "the first one applied is the killing one". So, as long as u always use contagion before ED, item rarity support should work"
again, contagion does virtually no damage.
and having never tried it myself on this build, i would not be able to advise.
besides, item rarity is complete garbage and yields no results whatsoever compared to item quantity.
this is completely outside of what this build is designed to do anyway, as this is a hybrid ED/ blight build that scales it's damage off spreading rot jewels, and requires the allelopathy gloves.
If you want a MF (magic find) essence drain build i suggest to look elsewhere, or even another build entirely as essence drain isn't very well suited at being a magic find build (other than just wearing bisco's amulet and some ventors), this build is designed to clear every game content on a cheap budget.
on Jan 9, 2018, 1:37:01 PM
Hey! A brand new player to POE here, im not too sure on the jewels used in this build since the passive tree has so many jewel slots, think you could link some to let me use as an reference? thanks!
on Jan 11, 2018, 12:30:54 PM