[3.3]♥ Low Life Poet's Volatile Dead ♥ All Content Down + Videos [Inquisitor]

3.3 Update:
I'm running Occultist this league, Check my profile/import my character to see my progress (character name is Illyaink). The guide is now based off Occultist.
Reason I'm running Occultist
Okay so I'm running this build as Occultist now because it's easy to get lots of ES, double curse on a 6 link shavs, No nessasary to get chayula ammy/watchers eye/helm enchant (the 3 items the make this build expensive but if you can afford them, get them) and
massive ES regen.

https://www.pathofexile.com/forum/view-thread/2165728 for Occultist thread.
Path of Building: https://pastebin.com/zvY2XRdK

First things first! It’s always good to see a build in action before you decide if you want to play it or not. Here is a variety of end game bosses and a shaped vault map.
Videos were made with Scion Varient. Inquisitor will dps the bosses down 3x faster.
Shaper Kill: https://youtu.be/uoAiHt6JncE
Chayula Domain Clear and Kill: https://youtu.be/-bjTac1VxZY
T14 Shaped Vault (Double Beyond + Full Sextants: https://youtu.be/irYrvytfczI
Red Elder Kill: https://youtu.be/_8JonFxK4f0
Hydra Kill: https://youtu.be/rJzwZjt5bwg
Minotaur Kill: https://youtu.be/Ft8wGO-YDFQ
Atziri Bosses: https://youtu.be/OP2KgG8c8Q4
Phoenix Kill: Coming Soon!
Chimera Kill: Coming Soon!

Ideal End Game Gear: https://pastebin.com/z9TTGBrj
Perfect Gear: https://pastebin.com/US3WtCgM
This is a program that will show you every think you need to know about the build.
Import the pastebin link above to see my tree, skills and gear.
How to download and import my build into Path of Building
Download path of building here: https://github.com/Openarl/PathOfBuilding/releases/download/v1.4.73/PathOfBuilding-Setup-1.4.73.exe
Install the program
Import build by pasting the link here

This build works by using 2 of the Poet’s Pen wands to cast Volatile Dead (our main damage spell) and Unearth (a spell that creates corpses as Volatile Dead needs corpses to work). The wands cast the spells socketed inside them with a 250ms cooldown. To get maximum casts per second you need to aim for just under 4 attacks per second if you are using 2 spells (Do not go above 4 otherwise it will skip casts). Right now the wands are bugged and will skip casts if you have more than ~3.8 attacks per second so play around with your attack speed and go with what feels good to you. Increased cooldown recovery speed mod on shaper boots and belts can be used to reduce the 250ms cooldown. At the moment I’m using 15% increased cooldown recovery speed and I find that 4.32 attacks per second is where I don’t find the wand skipping casts.

This build has more DPS then the life variants because Pain Attunement gives us 30% more damage.

✓ Insane DPS
✓ Only needs a 4 link
✓ Can do all content (Need to tweak gear for Atziri)
✓ Easy Shaper farmer
✓ Doesn't leave any stragglers
✓ Pretty Tanky with 7-8k ES, 2 Purities + Arctic Armour
✓ Extremely easy to level

✗ Expensive
✗ No good movement skill
✗ Can’t run Elemental Reflect, No leech and Temporal Chains feels bad

DPS Option: Inquisitor
Has around double the DPS when you have really good gear and >lv94 compared to the scion but has 1k less ES.
Scion has faster mapping over Inquisitor and has more then enough damage for bosses.
Scion is probably better from lv 1-91. If you are a newer player or don't have as much currency, go Scion.
If you want to use this as a bossing character go Inquisitor.
Order to Take Ascendancy points

Scion option: Build guide can be found here: https://www.pathofexile.com/forum/view-thread/2070606

Lv 50 http://poeurl.com/bJ6D
Lv 67 Without Shavronne's Wrappings http://poeurl.com/bJ6E
Lv 74 With Shavronne's Wrappings http://poeurl.com/bJ6F
Lv 98 http://poeurl.com/bKFb
For reference here is my personal lv 91 Tree: http://poeurl.com/bKFa

What to take if you need Attack Speed

Bandit Choice:
Alira for Critical Strike Multiplier and the Resistances makes gearing easier.

Pantheon Choices:
Major: Soul of Lunaris
We take this for the Physical Damage Reduction as we need all we can get with this build.
Make sure you capture Lycius’s soul to help avoid dying from a projectile chaining between you and your Golem.
Minor: Soul of Gruthkul
Again for the Physical Damage Reduction.

Patheon Powers if running Blood Rage for increased Life Leech rate

This setup can be run of you have a Cast When Damage takenBlood RageImmortal call Setup
Major: Soul of Arakaali
Capture Arachnoxia’s soul for "50% increased Recovery of Life and Energy Shield if you've stopped taking Damage Over Time Recently". This means every time your Immortal Call procs, the Damage over Time from Blood Rage stops and you get 50% increased life leech rate.
Minor: Soul of Ralakesh
Reduces the damage taken from Blood Rage while moving.

All My Scion Gear

Note that gems are different for Inquisitor so please check the gear and gem guide below.

Weapon 1:
Poet's Pen

Mandatory For this build as we use the “Trigger the socked skill when you attack” to cast out main DSP skill.
Aim for 12% attack speed to make capping it easier. Just bless to 15% spell damage.

Volitile DeadConcentrated EffectElemental Focus

Comments: Try to get a 21/20 Volitile Dead, it adds a lot of damage.
Other Options: Replace Elemental Focus with Increased Critical Strikes if you have cold damage on your build so that you can chill/freeze/shatter for a more defensive option.

Weapon 2:
Poet's Pen

Mandatory For this build as we use the “Trigger the socked skill when you attack” to create corpses for our main DPS skill.
Again, aim for 12% attack speed to make capping it easier. And bless to 15% spell damage.

UnearthPower Charge on criticalGreater Multiple Projectiles

Other Options: Power charge on kill thats linked to Unearth can be swapped with Culling Strike on your Frenzy if you don’t need the attack speed from the quality on Culling Strike.
Some people also like to add Bodyswap in for mapping whichteleport around the map as you attack. I personally don't like it myself.

Weapon Swap (Weapon 3&4 For Atziri)

Wand 1: Firestorm - Elemental Focus - Concentrated Effect
Wand 2: Cremation - Unearth - Concentrated Effect
When Levelling Enlightens use a Haku Weapon with 6% increase gem quality:

Shavronne's Wrappings

Mandatory For this build as it allows you to go low life when you have all your auras on. Bless up to 10% increased spell damage.
Only needs to be a 4-5 link but a 6 link will give you more survivability, try to get one with a high ES roll.

Frenzy(lv 1)Culling Strike/Faster AttacksGreater Multiple ProjectilesCurse on HitAssassin Mark - Blind

Comments: Frenzy must be level 1 for the lower dex requirement.
Get quality on Greater Multiple Projectiles, Frenzy and Culling Strike if you need to cap your attack speed or use Faster Attacks
Can drop Culling strike and Blind if you only have a 4 link.

The Vertex

You can run any helm in this slot. I went with The Vertex as it has high es, the +1 gems gives me more mana (as it makes my Lv 3 Enighten Lv 4) and It also gives me +1 max res from my Purity auras.
Other options: Rare ES Helm, The Gull
Enchant: Volitile Dead Destroys up to 1 additional corpse.
This is a huge DPS boost but a very expensive enchant.

Purity of IceEnlightenAngerPurity of Lightning

Comments: I went with Purity of ice and Purity of Lightning to help balance my resistances for my wise oak. I get reduced fire damage from Arctic Armour so these 2 seemed like the best option.
Other Options: You can replace either of the Purities with Purity of Fire if needed.

Rare ES Gloves

Not much to say here. Fingerless Gloves or Sorcerer gloves work well.
Other Options: Essence of insanity gloves for the “Socketed Gems have 16% more Attack and Cast Speed” mod and run your Frenzy in it.
Atziri's Acuity for vaal pact (quicker life leech) and easier to colour sockets.
Mod Priority

Attack Speed
Elemental Resistances

Enchant: Do not enchant if you have Fingerless Gloves, “of Spite if you have other gloves”.

Cast When Damage Taken (lv 1)Immortal Call (lv 3) - Summon Ice Golem (lv 3/20)

Clarity (Lv 1)

Comments: Clarity is not linked to anything (though it doesn't matter if it is) and is here for the Watcher’s Eye buff.
Summon Ice Golem can be Lv 3 if you want it to auto cast or Lv 20 for self cast.
Other Options: Optional Skill gems include: Summon Lightning Golem, Increased duration (for your Immortal Call), Vortex, Blood Rage.

Sin Trek

You can run any boots in this slot. I went with Sin Trek because it was an easy way to get High ES with 30% movement speed. Rare shaped sorcerer boots with increased cooldown recovery speed mod would be better.
Other options: Inya’s Epiphany, Skyforth, Rare ES boots, Steppan Eard, Brinerot Whalers (if you need lightning resistance.
Enchant: Adds 1 to 160 Lightning Damage if you haven't Killed Recently

DisciplineBlood MagicEnlightenArctic Armour

Comments: If you have a Vitality leech watchers eye, replace Anger with Vitality. Only Lv 2 Enlighten Needed but 3/4 saves a points on the tree.
Other Options: Arctic Armour can be swapped for Herald of Ice if you want more DPS and corpse shatter for porcupines.
Arctic Armour can be swapped for Purity of Fire if you have a Lv 4 Enlighten and you pick up another 4% reduced mana reservation on the tree (2 points)

Presence of Chayula

Pretty much BiS for any low life build. This Coverts our 20% of our life to ES, this is the only reason life is on the rare stat priority list.
Other options: Eye of chayula for a more budget option. Rare amulets with % increased ES, flat ES and crit multi would be good too but you would have to either:
Use the boot enchant “Chance to avoid being stunned if you’ve killed recently”
Use Soul of the Brine King as your Pantheon Power
Use Skyforths

Opal Ring + Essence of Anger

This is the best way to get DPS from our ring slots as increased fire damage can only roll 22% on rings normally but with a Deafening Essence of Anger, you can roll a maximum of 33%. Opals give us 25% already for a total of 58% x2 rings = 116% increased Fire damage.
Other Options: Well rolled Diamond Rings.
Mod Priotity
Increased Fire damage
Elemental Resistances
Attack speed

Shaper Stygian Vise

Shaper Belts that are iLV75 or above can also roll the increased cooldown recovery speed mod so I went with a Stygian Vise base as it is pretty much the best best game in the game at the moment.
Mod Priotity
Cooldown recovery
ES (both + and increased)
STR (unless you managed to get some on your other rare pieces as this saves a few points on the tree)
Increased Flask effect Duration
Reduced Flask Charges Used
Elemental Resistances
**Craft increased movement speed if there is nothing better to craft

Unique Jewels
Watcher's Eye

Mod 1: Fire damage leeched as life while affected by Anger.
The main way we get life leech!
Cheaper option: Damage leached as life while affected by Vitality. (pick up Zealot's Oath on the tree for the 1.7& ES regen)
If you can’t afford either, you will have to replace elemental weakness with warlords mark in your frenzy link.
Mod 2: Gain % of mana as energy shield while affected by Clarity.
Note: Still good after the fix
Optional mod: Take % of physical damage as fire/cold/ice while affected by purity of fire/cold/ice.
This just helps us out defensively as we are already running the aura.
Or: ES on hit while affected by Discipline as we hit a lot (volatile dead explosion + 4 balls + frenzy + unearth)
Note that this is limited to 1 so make sure you get the 2 mods you want on the one jewel and that the values can be divined, not the mods.

Energy From Within

Aim for a 6% one.
Place is this socket

Pure Talent

This jewel provides base crit if you grab the Elemental damage at the shadow start It also gives elemental pen to you non crit hits.

Rare Jewels
Rare Abyssal Jewels:

Mod Priority
Added fire damage to spells
Added fire damage to spells while duel wielding
Crit Multi
Increased attack speed if you have crit recently
Added cold/lightning damage to spells
Added cold/lightning damage to spells while duel wielding
Increased damage if you haven’t killed recently

Rare Standard Jewels:

Mod Priority
Increased ES
Crit multi for spells
Crit multi for elemental skills
Crit multi for fire skills
Crit multi while dual weilding
Global Crit multi
Attack speed while dual wielding
Attack speed with wands
Increased fire damage
Increased area damage
Increased damage
Increased attack speed
Increased attack and cast speed


Any 5 of these 7 flasks are viable:
Vessle of Vinktar

This flask shocks any nearby enemy so good for dpsing bosses. Will need a anti shock flask if running this.

Atziri’s Promise

Just aim for a 15% ele as chaos roll.

Alchemist’s Basalt Flask of Heat

There is not much Physical damage reduction on this build so I run a basalt.
Can be anti bleed or freeze.

Alchemist’s Sulphur Flask of Staunching

Can be anti bleed or freeze.

Experimenter’s Diamond flask of Grounding

Needed to increase your crit chance.
No need to run anti shock if you're not using a Vinktars.

Alchemist’s Quicksilver Flask of Adrenaline

My Movement Speed flask
Alchemist of Adrenaline is the best mods for it.

This character was actually one of the easiest characters I’ve ever levelled!
Gear to help with Leveling

Buy some low level abyss jewels with added damage to spells and socket them into the Darkness Enthroned Belt.
You dont even need a Tabula Rasa unless you're leveling with Firestorm/Fire Nova Mine

Pre lv 12: Use pretty much anything. I normally go with Fire Trap + Freeze Pulse
We start using both Poet's Pens from level 12 with Volatile DeadAdded ColdAdded Lightning socketed in one wand and and Unearth - Lesser Multiple Projectiles socketed in the other. Just use your Default Attack to proc the spells.
Other Options if you don't have your Poet's Pens yet
You can level with any of the 3 setups below until Bood Aqueducks in Act 9:
Volatile DeadSpell Cascade and DesecrateSpell Cascade (Volatile Dead + Spell Cascade + Elemental Focus + Fire Penetration + Critical Strike Chance + Concentrated Effect)
Fire Nova Mine and Flame Totem (Fire Nova Mine - Minefield - Elemental Focus - Fire Pen - Increased Critical Strikes - Trap and Mine Damage)
Firestorm and Flame Totem (Firestorm - Spell Echo - Elemental Focus - Controlled Destruction - Fire Penetration - Concentrated Effect / Spell Cascade)

At Lv 16 pickup Frenzy and use that as your main attack. I also pick up Herald of Ice and Herald of Thunder for a bit more DPS
At Lv 18 Pickup Concentrated Effect and Elemental Focus and replace Added Lightning and Added Cold in your wands and that should carry you to maps

Scion or Inquisitor?
Do you want this to be a mapping character? Go Scion.
Do you want this to be a bossing character? Go Inquisitor.
Are you a newer player or don't have much currency? Go Scion.

What's the minimum gear you need to run this build?
2 Poet's Pens! You can play as life or hybrid and swap to low life when you feel you have enough Energy Shield.

Why ES over Life?
More damage from low life, another flask slot and less traveling on the tree.

How much unreserved mana should I be aiming for?
Anything over 50 mana feels good.

How much attack speed should I be aiming for
With 15% CDR, 4.32 feels good to me. I’m not too sure with other values of CDR, just test by attacking twice at a medium distance and see if your volatile dead casts.

What expensive items should I get first?
Poet’s Pen x2 > Shavronne’s Wrappings > + 1 Helm Enchant > Watcher's Eye > Presence of Chayula.

Can I use other skills in the Poet’s Pens?
Yeah any spell is fine, Just spec out of the fire damage on the tree and you can use any other elemental spell.

How good is this build after the helm enchant nerf?
It is still the BiS enchant as it adds 4 balls from 3 for each cast. Probably the strongest helm enchant in the game at the moment.

Why don't you use Bodyswap in your Poet's Pen?
I don't like it but feel free to use it.

How can I kill Atziri without dying to reflect?
Run 2 Poet's Pens in a weapon swap or swap before the fight.
Cremation is insane for stationary targets. Second best option would probably be firestorm. So the links would be:
Wand 1: Firestorm - Elemental Focus - Concentrated Effect
Wand 2: Unearth - Cremation - Concentrated Effect

Is this Hardcore Viable?

18/01/2018 - Added Red Elder/Chayula kill video
23/01/2018 - Atziri vid up


Thank you for reading!

Note: This was converted from a Scion Build post when i realised Inquisitor was better. Let me know if I left anything in that shouldn't be here.


Last edited by illyaink on Jun 13, 2018, 11:19:24 PM
Last bumped on Oct 9, 2018, 7:22:07 AM

I also played a low life VD,The bigest different between us maybe the es regen. But your dps is much batter than mine.
Last edited by shrykk on Jan 16, 2018, 9:05:00 AM
Hey! Is it better to go inquisitor now or is there some other reason than +1k es to go scion? I can get % es on rings in std so difference between es is not that big.
DisturbedDuck wrote:
Hey! Is it better to go inquisitor now or is there some other reason than +1k es to go scion? I can get % es on rings in std so difference between es is not that big.

If I were to pick a class now, I would go Inquisitor. It's a way better choice if you can get those rings.
Last edited by illyaink on Jan 19, 2018, 9:59:57 AM
shrykk wrote:

I also played a low life VD,The bigest different between us maybe the es regen. But your dps is much batter than mine.

Nice. I find the build is pretty tanky so killing bosses asap feels better over es Regen. I did go regen + blood rage at one point but ended up dropping it.

It's a little crazy. Only 75% fire resistance & it's a 82lv map
shrykk wrote:

It's a little crazy. Only 75% fire resistance & it's a 82lv map

Yeah nice! I'm guessing your using the es regen watchers eye? How many links is you RF and what did you drop to fit it in?

Edit: just looked at your gear. It looks very similar to mine :). I guess ES on hit would be more ES as long as your hitting things, very cool idea! Ill add that into the build as a option.
Last edited by illyaink on Jan 16, 2018, 6:20:46 PM
Is this build better than life version. I'm doing life version and wonder if I should switch to LL
Rezzzy wrote:
shrykk wrote:

It's a little crazy. Only 75% fire resistance & it's a 82lv map

Yeah nice! I'm guessing your using the es regen watchers eye? How many links is you RF and what did you drop to fit it in?

Edit: just looked at your gear. It looks very similar to mine :). I guess ES on hit would be more ES as long as your hitting things, very cool idea! Ill add that into the build as a option.

shrykk is my id,the vd character is f_older . you can import my bd to pob。

i only use rf to prove high es regen and super damage that almost 254 thousand vd damage。So that i only have 75% fire resistances。 But i think you can improve this bd to real using。
Last edited by shrykk on Jan 16, 2018, 10:56:19 PM

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