[3.16][HC][ON BREAK] Caustic Arrow Raider, DoT Focused | Tanky | 6k+ Health | All Content | In-depth


I won't be updating the guide to 3.17 version. I already didn't get to fully update it in 3.16. Combined with me playing PoE less and less while game constantly changes (especially in 3.16), my game knowledge starts to lag behind. It's better for everyone that i take official break than to deliver something of poor quality, while also breaking another "I'll properly update" promise. I already crossed this line i set for myself.

I'll still play PoE but at my own pace. When i feel like i can handle updating the guide to my standards, i'll do it.


Starting with the most important question: "Why Raider of all classes?"
For powerful defensive abilities, QoL features and speed. As long as you can stay alive, lower damage is not that big of deal. With investment you can still reach respectable amounts of damage. That's why i believe this is the best ascendancy choice for life based CA.

This build features over 6000 life, capped 95% evade chance, capped Spell Suppression with possibility to go Spell Dodge instead. It's also immune to elemental ailments and can run almost any mod safely. Any incoming damage can be easily solved with instant life flasks healing you back to full life. Capable of clearing all content in the game.

+ Cheap starting cost, great league starter
+ Very easy to play
+ Tanky end game, over 6000 life and capped Evade + Spell Suppression
+ Close to unkillable with right investment
+ Fast without flasks (~80% ms, high AS)
+ Flexible build, many ways of end-game optimization
+ Can run nearly all map mods, or all of them with investment
+ Capable of clearing all end game content

- Low single target damage
- Requires high investment to quickly kill end game bosses
- Expensive end game gear

Passive Tree and Bandits
Level 94 - Base passive tree

This is the recommended path for majority of the players, focuses on scaling Caustic Arrow only. Budget and beginner friendly. Guide will be focused on this tree.

Once you've reached level 94, start picking up closest jewel slots or pick some more masteries. You can also replace some life/damage nodes for 2 point jewel sockets if you have the money to spare.

Bandit Reward: Kill All (recommended) OR spare Oak

Ascendancy: Avatar of Chase (Onslaught) + Avatar of Veil (Phasing)

Avatar of Veil and Chase provides amazing defensive, speed and QoL features. No other ascendancy can really match it. Best used for pure mapping, but still works against end game bosses thanks to mobility.

Cluster Jewel Trees
Low Investment - Level 82/97
High Investment - Level 70/100

These are my suggested passive trees if you want to invest into clusters (it's worth it). Low investment gives good damage increase with close no changes to setup. You will probably need a jewel with corrupted blood immunity and 30% chance to avoid elemental ailments though, or sacrifice some other notables to grab Crystal Skin back.

Heavy investment is also worth it, but you'll have to sacrifice A LOT of defence/QoL to make it work. Other option is to get insane gear to make up for everything... which is possible but not realistic to do. Still, this option remains.

Suggested Cluster Jewels:

Large - 12% increased Chaos Damage / 8 passives
* Wicked Pall (Prefix)
* Unwaveringly Evil (Prefix)
* Unholy Grace (Suffix)

There's not much to do discuss, this is the best possible combination for a large jewel.

Medium - 12% increased Chaos Damage over Time / 4-5 passives
* Any 2 of following notables:
* Offensive - Wicked Pall / Unwaveringly Evil
* Defensive - Flow of Life / Student of Decay
* Utility - Eldritch Inspiration / Brewed for Potency

Medium - 10% increased Damage over Time / 4-5 passives
* Flow of Life
* Brewed for Potency / Student of Decay

Chaos DoT multi has higher damage potential while generic DoT multi is more defensive oriented and easier to craft. All listed notables are roughly equal in power, pick whatever you feel is worth it. All notables are prefixes in medium clusters.

Small cluster jewels and their notables aren't covered because they must have very good mods to be worth your time. Standard non-cluster jewels should be stronger in almost all cases unless you need a specific notable.

Other Ascendancy Classes (NOT UPDATED TO 3.16)
Allright, i get it. You dislike Raider for some reason, probably not enough damage. There are alternative ascendancies using the exact same passive tree. Beware, the guide is NOT optimized for these ascendancies.

Starting with the best one:

Ascendancy: Patient Reaper -> Prolonged Pain -> Ghost Dance -> Escape Artist
Base passive tree (Level 95)

Highest damage output out of all ascendancy classes. Good survivability against all type of content. Lower speed and QoL compared to Raider.

Ascendancy: Nature's Reprisal -> Nature's Boon -> Master Alchemist ->
Nature's Adrenaline
Base passive tree (Level 91) - Same as Raider's

Great middle ground between Raider and Trickster. Almost as high damage as Trickster while having elemental ailment immunity like Raider. Flask recharge is incredible as well.

Ascendancy: Unstoppable Hero -> Fortitude -> Conqueror -> Worthy Foe
Base passive tree (Level 92)

If you hate dying, here's your choice. Perma fortify makes Champion strongest against big hits. Taunt branch is also great for clearing packs of mobs. Low QoL with great defence and decent damage.

You can use Inspirational and First to Strike, Last to Fall nodes instead of Taunt branch. Gives massive conditional damage and defence.

Ascendancy: Gathering Winds -> Occupying Force -> Endless Munitions -> Wind Ward
Base passive tree (Level 91) - Same as Raider's

Good for early mapping thanks to 2 extra arrows. It's main selling point is Occupying Force which is especially powerful for Toxic Rain - if you decide to use it in a second weapon slot. Other than that it's underwhelming in all other aspects. Quite weak defensively.

You can pick Gathering Winds as a 3rd notable instead of 1st if you prefer. Less mobility but much higher single target with Toxic Rain - Mirage Archer levelling setup.

Major God: Soul of Lunaris OR Solaris OR Arakaali

You have quite a lot of freedom here. Lunaris is always good for mapping and usually the default choice. Solaris is great for bossing and against chain crits (like Cavestalkers in azurite mine). Arakaali if you want some extra recovery in annoying burning/desecrated ground maps.

Minor God: Soul of Ryslatha OR Yugul

Ryslatha is never a bad choice, life flasks are your primary way of recovery after all. Yugul is likely second best for the 30% reduced curse effectiveness.

You can also use Ralakesh / Shakari / Garukhan, but personally i wouldn't bother as later on Lethe Shade keystone should make dealing with DoTs a piece of cake.

Gem Setups
Main Skill - Caustic Arrow:
Your bread and butter. First 3 support gems have no real downsides and should always be included in the build. The other 4 are a matter of preference and budget. You'll have to pick two of them:

Efficacy - Usually your 5th link. Has lower damage than others but no downsides and some extra duration too. You can replace it later for higher damage options.
Damage on Full Life - Requires you to have full life, which might be a problem unless you have a specific flask. Once you do, it's mostly a free damage. Preferred choice for 6th link
Concentrated Effect - Lowers your AoE which is going to hurt clear speed. However if you manage to get one or two extra arrows, you can negate it's downside completely.
Empower - Has no downsides, but it's drop only gem (so limited access) and requires at least level 2 to be worth using. This will take time and/or money to get it. Strongest support gem overall, especially at level 4.

Wither Totem:
Nearly doubles damage against bosses. Place the totem somewhere on the side and let it do the work. It also slows their movement speed, so keep that in mind against some bosses. Totems are squishy and destroy easily, you might have to resummon them.

Cursed Frenzy:
Setup designed for additional damage against bosses/rares. Allows to quickly generate Frenzy charges, while cursing enemy at the same time. When at maximum charges, it refreshes their duration. You can only generate one Frenzy charge per cast.

You can use Greater Multiple Projectiles instead of Barrage Support, but for that you'll need Additional Accuracy for a 5th link. Without that extra gem you'll miss way too often.

Primary Auras:
Grace is your first and most important aura that makes up majority of your evasion. Allows for smooth progression early, and to cap evade chance later. It's hard to replace.

Malevolence significantly increases your damage and duration of your skills. It will take some time until you'll be able to use it alongside Grace. You need to raise your mana efficiency first, which is going to happen around white-yellow maps.

Clarity with a little bit of #% mana regeneration allows you to easily sustain mana. This aura is not mandatory, you can also use mana flask instead. DO NOT RAISE THIS AURA ABOVE LEVEL 10.

Dread Banner:
Used in order to cap evade chance at all times. Considering the strength of that keystone, 10% mana reservation is a small price to pay. It should be noted that enemies must be in banner's (fairly large) radius in order for it work.

Dread Banner should be linked with Generosity support to increase effective range and power of accuracy debuff. You CANNOT link Generosity with other Auras, or else you won't be able to gain any benefits from them.

Guard Skill:
Steelskin for extra durability. If manually cast, it's great for any encounter. If you're lazy and linked Steelskin with CWDT, it protects you from multiple hits in quick succession. The entire setup is optional, but recommended nonetheless.

Situational Skills:
Blink Arrow is used to cross gaps and escape tough situations quickly. Your primary way of moving around is still on foot.

Vaal Blight is a great utility skill for slowing down enemies, so it's easier to keep them inside degen ground. Also applies some extra damage. Vaal Blight should be linked with Increased Duration support for longer uptime. It's completely optional gem, but very useful in some scenarios.

These are the only mandatory gems and we still got 2-4 free gem slots. How you fill the rest of them is your choice.

Optional Setups + Alternate Quality Gems
Useful Alternate Quality Gems List
Frenzy - Anomalous - Fires an additional Projectile
Dread Banner - Anomalous - 60% less Skill Effect Duration / Nearby Enemies deal 2% less Damage
Generosity - Divergent - Supported Skills have 100% increased Aura Area of Effect / Supported Skills have 20% reduced Reservation Efficiency
Blink Arrow - Phantasmal - +1 Cooldown Use

All of these alternate qualties are straight upgrades except Blink Arrow maybe. Extra arrow speed reduces time it takes to teleport after all. Extra projectile on Frenzy means more hits per second and you can still easily cancel mid animation. Downside of Dread Banner's alternate quality is nonexistent, since we never place it on the ground. That means 2% less damage is almost free, you do lose a little bit of accuracy debuff strength after all. However it shouldn't be a problem. Divergent Generosity increases Dread Banner reliability so it's absolutely worth it.

Withering Step - Increased Duration

Optional way to apply Wither, which you'll do if enemy enters skill's area for the first time. This requires you to be in medium range to the enemy, ending skill by using another. It's overall different playstyle, but if mastered should be very reliable.

Anomalous Withering Step applies two extra stacks, and you can even combined it with Enhance for up to 4 extra stacks. Mana cost can get hefty quickly though.

Aspect of the Crab is an amazing source of physical mitigation for evasion characters. With very high evade chance numbers it can easily act as permanent 20% physical damage reduction. It's a reservation skill only obtainable through specific unique and beastcrafting. Getting enough mana for reservation might be problematic, but eventually possible.

Determination + Defiance Banner
It's actually possible to get decent amount of armour with this combo, Granite flask + 60% armour during flask effect and hybrid armour/evasion body armour. However it means you'll have to give up Dread Banner and Malevolence. It also requires good gear to reach reasonable armour values. Not ideal, but possible if you don't like dying.

Enlighten support gem reduces the high mana reservation of the auras, allowing for easier mana management. You can link it to Grace, Malevolence and Clarity to increase your unreserved mana pool. It cannot support Aspect of the Crab since it's not a skill gem.

Expensive Cursed Frenzy (GGGGBB):
Frenzy - Barrage Support - Awakened Hextouch - Despair - Additional Accuracy - Culling Strike

A little bit extra power if you have necessary money for it. Culling Strike to finish off bosses. You can also use Enhance instead of Culling Strike or as 6th link, but with how powerful Wither is i don't see a reaon to do so.

Golem: Stone Golem OR Flame Golem OR Chaos Golem

Stone Golem is most useful with his taunt and high flat health regeneration. Flame golem for the damage, Chaos golem if you want to try some phys dmg reduction shenanigans. Golems tend to die quite often in high tier maps and can easily backfire if a boss/group of mobs targets him instead of you. They can still be very useful in early mapping or against labyrith traps (Stone Golem).

Portal Gem

If you have a free gem slot, why not? Pair with Enhance support for extremely fast portals.

My current gear / TL;DR:
Weapons: +3 CA Bow (self-crafting recommended, see crafting section)
Quiver: Life and Resists, in end game Hunter's quiver with DoT multiplier
Armour: Kintsugi

Helmet: Life and Resists, 40% CA Damage OR 30% CA duration enchantment
Boots: Life, Resists and high Movement Speed.
Gloves: Life and Resists

Belt: Life and Resists, Leather / Heavy Belt with Elder mods if possible
Rings: Life and Resists
Amulet: Life and Resists, Agate/Lapis/Marble base preferred, Annoint: Corruption (BBCr)

Flasks: 1-2 Life flasks, 3-4 utility flasks recommended. Flexible, you can use almost anything you want.

Jewels: Life and damage on all of them, very efficient if you have at least 3 good mods.

Notes: High evasion is important. Not as much as life, but use evasion bases if possible.
Aim to have ~160 strength and intelligence, so you can use lvl 20 gems.
It's good to cap elemental weakness curse (109%). X% Mana regen is very good QoL.

Below you will find the gear explained in-depth. Piece by piece.

+3 Caustic Arrow Bow
The core item of this build.

Caustic Arrow's cloud has very limited options when it comes to increasing it's damage output. Additional levels and crafted mods are the only way to make your bow actually benefit the build in the first place. CA setup socketed inside +3 bow easily increases the damage output by ~50-60% more compared to a normal 6-link.

To make it clear, on the bow we NEED:

* +1 to Level of Socketed Gems (prefix)
* +2 to Level of Socketed Bow Gems (prefix)
* +18-20% Chaos Damage over Time Multiplier (suffix, crafted)

You can also use super budget version with only +2 to Level of Socketed Bow Gems,
it's enough to beat almost any encounter in the game. However i don't recommend settling on that. The more damage, the easier it gets. Crafting +3 bow is not that expensive and massively boosts the damage.

I recommend to self-craft the bow as it's the cheapest way to do so. Plus, you can directly upgrade the +2 6-linked bow into +3 once you acquire currency. Chaos DoT Multiplier doesn't have to be highest level, any tier already gives really good bonus and you can upgrade it as you unlock tiers.

End game version of the bow should also include +35% Damage over Time Multiplier suffix OR +2 additional arrows mod. Former is extra damage to help you out kill end game bosses and is overall a default choice. Latter is a massive QoL and effective AoE increase, suited for comfortable mapping.

Bow crafting is fully covered in crafting section.

My personal choice of body armour. I use it to mitigate potential oneshots from bosses, and it saved me multiple times in the past. Additional 50% evasion if you get hit is a really nice bonus for mapping. The "20% Less Damage Taken if you've not been hit Recently" also works against degens (LAB TRAPS!) until you've been hit.

Kintsugi is a mandatory end game body armour for Raider. Combined with with very high evasion + dodge, the unique passive acts as 25% more life. It is true for many bosses.

Before you reach the end game, you might want to use Carcass Jack or Cherrubim's for additional DPS. If you're non-Raider ascendancy, you might want to consider Queen of the Forest instead. You will find more explainations below.

Optional Armours:
Carcass Jack
Best chest for start of the league. Good amount of additional damage, life and some resistances. Also massively boosts the AoE which is a bit small without high gem level. It's still inferior in the long run and should be used only for league start.

Cherrubim's Maleficence
Best choice if you want more damage. It has up to 80% increased chaos damage, giving around ~15% more damage in the final build. Has a lot of life as well, making it OK defense wise. Can be used instead of Kintsugi in the end game, but i wouldn't recommend it for hardcore characters.

Queen of the Forest
Option for non-Raider ascendancies. Movement speed is our primary way of moving around the map and dodging skills. Raider has enough speed on her own, allowing the use of defensive chests. Others ascendancies don't have that luxury, so you should consider using it.

A rare pierce quiver with life and resistances. Penetrating base is the best but not necessary since we get 3 pierces from tree already.

For map farming you might want Warlord/Shaper influenced quivers. It can roll +1 additional arrow mod which is great QoL and effective AoE increase. With it you don't have to aim very accurately to destroy a monster pack, makes a big difference.

Against end game bosses you'll definitely want Hunter influenced quiver. It has amazing damage potential with up to 51% DoT multiplier gained from two different mods.

Influenced quiver crafting is fully covered in crafting section.

Helmet, Gloves and Boots
Packed into same category, as you want same thing from all of them:

* Life
* Resistances
* Open Suffix (optional)
* Movement Speed (boots only)

Evasion based preferred, especially the helmet (can achieve really high evasion). Atziri's Step unique boots are amazing defensive option if your resistances allow it. That's pretty much it, what's left is to look at the enchantments:

Gloves: of Spite

Nothing else is useful, really. You can totally ignore the gloves enchantments.

Boots: 8% chance to Spell Dodge if you've taken Spell Damage Recently.

Best late game enchantment. The build is nearly invincible against attacks, but spells still hit quite often. 80% chance to avoid stuns is also a great alternative.

#1 - 30% increased Caustic Arrow Duration
#2 - 40% increased Caustic Arrow Damage

Both are on similar power. In my opinion Duration enchantment and the QoL it gives are more valuable, you should be aiming for it. The latter gives around ~7% more damage, small but welcome upgrade.

Once again, life and resistances. Strength is also a desirable stat. Leather Belt is the best non-Stygian Vyse base, with Heavy Belt being slightly weaker option.

I also have to remind that Elder and Hunter influenced belts are absolutely amazing. They can roll few VERY good mods:

* 8–10% increased maximum Life (Elder/Hunter, prefix)
* 26–30% increased Chaos Damage (Hunter, prefix)
* 16–20% increased Life Recovery rate (Elder, suffix)
* 16–18% to all Elemental Resistances (Elder, suffix)

That's not even all of the good mods. If you ever accumulate enough money to buy/craft it for yourself, i recommend getting one.

Rings and Amulet
Like majority of other gear and little more:

* Life
* Resistances
* Strength and Intelligence
* #% Mana Regeneration

Attributes to reach ~160 requirement for lvl 20/21 gems. Mana regeneration is not necessary, but it's good to have at least ~40% to make it more reliable.

Once you hit the end game, i recommend buying a good Marble amulet. Life regen is really helpful in mitigating degens / small hits.

Amulet Annoinments:
Corruption - Black, Black, Crimson
The default choice due to relatively low cost for high damage boost. There's no better damage node on the passive tree.

Consitution - Golden, Golden, Silver
Discipline - Silver, Silver, Black
Extra survivability is always useful. Former is stronger but also more expensive, latter is cheaper.

This is the setup i run personally and recommend it for everyone. 2 life flasks to quickly heal from 0% to 100% health. 3 utility flasks which you use every ~6 seconds The mods on those flasks allow Raider to achieve 95% evasion even with 40% less evasion from Wind Dancer.

Life flasks - i recommend Bubbling with bleeding removal for emergencies.

Utility flasks - you should use Stibnite and Jade. You NEED 50%+ increased evasion rating on them. They should also have "Reduced Charges" mod, it's undoubtly the best affix for flask uptime in maps. For additional effects, ignite / poison / curse removal and increased evasion rating / movement speed are the only good options. Crafted flask mods are also something to consider on utility flasks. Quicksilver is obviously recommended for extra speed, but is not must have.

Flask setup is flexible, you can adjust it if you like. You can also use mana flask in order to skip Clarity aura. However anti-bleeding life flask and two utility flasks mentioned above are MUST have.

From unique flasks:

* Dying Sun - Ultimate AoE flask. Luxury upgrade to the build, not required, expensive. Uptime on this flask can be problematic, you'll need very good gear to sustain it during mapping.

* Witchfire Brew - Good flask if you start out the build, but as you progress with the build it starts to feel like a dead weight. Especially against bosses, where the flask overrides the Curse on Hit setup and will "delete" the curse once you're out of blasphemy range.

There's not much to discuss, you want any 3 out of these 7 mods on your jewels:

* 5-7% increased maximum life
* 3–4% to Chaos Damage over Time Multiplier
* 9–13% increased Chaos Damage
* 10–12% increased Damage over Time
* 10–12% increased Projectile Damage
* 10–12% increased Area Damage
* 8–10% increased Damage

Life on the jewel is especially valued, get it if you can. Getting a jewel with all 4 good mods is kinda impossible, but finding one with 3 mods at once should be easy. Be sure to look out for other mods that can be beneficial for you:

* 14–18% increased Evasion Rating
* 7–13% to Chaos Resistance
* Any resistance / strength / intelligence mods

Watcher's Eye is an expensive jewel you want to acquire once you reach the end game maps. It is incredibly strong both offensively and defensively. Primary mod you would look for is 18-22% Chaos DoT multi while having Malevolence, as it provides around 10-15% more damage. Anything else is just a bonus. Worthwhile mods from strongest to weakest:

* +(18–22)% to Damage over Time Multipliers while affected by Malevolence
* Unaffected by Bleeding while affected by Malevolence
* (8–12)% increased Recovery rate of Life and Energy Shield while affected by Malevolence
* (-5 to -10) to Total Mana Cost of Skills while affected by Clarity
* (10–15)% increased Mana Recovery Rate while affected by Clarity

Levelling and Progression
Caustic Arrow levelling (Act 1-10)
I've tried to be beginner friendly in this section, but didn't want to write essay either. If you're a veteran, i'm sure you can get all important information without reading guidelines. Please do read the short "Preparing for maps" section anyway.

Gem Progression:

Caustic Arrow - Pierce / Swift Affliction - Void Manipulation - Vicious Projectiles

You'll get Void Manipulation at lvl 8, Vicious Projectiles at lvl 18. Use Pierce Support gem until you pick up pierce nodes on passive tree, around level 40-45. Once you do, use Swift Affliction instead (buy from Siosa).

Toxic Rain - Mirage Archer

Additional utility/damage setup for bosses. Shoot Caustic Arrow, then attack once or twice and repeat. It's quite useful early on when you still lack damage, but you should be able to ditch it around act 4-5.

Wither - Spell Totem - Multiple Totems

Used for additional damage against bosses, can be used starting from level 38. Place and forget, single cast should be enough. You might need little bit of strength/intelligence to use this setup.
Do NOT level up Wither until you reach act 9.

Despair : Curses enemies to increase damage. Use on bosses, tough packs, rares etc.

Dash : Your primary movement skill during levelling
Blink Arrow : Your secondary movement skill, to cross gaps.
Grace : Your levelling aura, grants additional evasion.
Purity of Elements : If you really need resistances. Use instead of Grace if necessary.

Gem Rewards:
* lvl 2 - Caustic Arrow
* lvl 3 - Volley (Medicine Chest side quest)
* lvl 4 - Dash

* lvl 8 - Void Manipulation
* lvl 10 - Blink Arrow
* lvl 12 - Toxic Rain

* lvl 18 - Vicious Projectiles
* lvl 24 - Grace, Despair
* lvl 38 - Barrage

Any gems you don't receive as a quest reward can be bought from Siosa (act 3) or
Lilly (act 6) once you complete their quests. Petarus and Vanja (act 4) also sell Multiple Totems after you enter Belly of the Beast.

Passive Tree Progression:
Level ~9 (Act 1)
Level ~21 (Act 2)
Level ~31 (Act 3)
Level ~45 (Act 4 - 5)
Level ~54 (Act 6 - 7)
Level ~66 (Act 8 - Blood Acqueducts farm)
Level ~71 (Act 9 - 10)

Bandit Reward: Kill all (recommended) OR spare Oak

Ascendancy Order: Rapid Assault -> Avatar of Chase -> Quartz Infusion -> Avatar of Veil

Additional twink gear:
* Silverbranch/Silverbough
* Tabula Rasa
* Goldrim
* Wanderlust
* Hyrri's Bite (Int/Str)
* Karui Ward

Important reminder: Don't forget to level additional CA gems in your weapon slot. They still level even if you don't use them.

General levelling rule: First and most important to remember - when searching for equipment, your priority on them is Life and Resistances. Links are equally as important, be sure to look out for correct socket colors. This applies to all acts.

Act by act guidelines:
Act 1-3 should be more or less trivial. That's where you slowly shape up your main skill. Majority of the necessary gems are rewards from quests. The ones you can't, you can buy from a Nessa, Yeena and Siosa as you progress through the main story. Be careful around act 3, that's where you might feel lack of defenses in some areas. It won't last for long.

In act 4 it's important to have good resistances, especially fire resist. Outside of that, it should be a breeze. It's a good idea to enter Labyrinth after you find waypoint inside Crystal Veins. Should be trivial at this point.

Act 5 is where things get little bit tougher. Monsters out there are quite dangerous and it's recommended to have capped fire and lightning resitances. It's also a time where bleed removal life flask becomes necessary. I suggest to farm Chambers of Innocence until you reach level 45 and then face the Innocence himself. Next boss is Kitava, 1600 life is enough to tank all of his abilities.

Once you arrive in act 6, check your resistances. If they're below 50%, you should pick up Purity of Elements from Clarissa (act 3) - use it instead of Grace aura until you solve the resistance problem. It's recommended to have them capped before the final boss.

Act 7 is quite easy. Beware of ghosts inside the Crypt, they can hit pretty hard. Around the end of this act, you should have all points from provided level ~53 passive tree and 10 respec points. Once you do, you should unallocate Ranger's starting nodes and take Atrophy chaos wheel. You might have to go back to earlier acts to have necessary amount of respec points.

Act 8 features Deodre, the hardest boss you encounter during levelling. It's relatively safe if you have 2500 life, but that might be hard to acquire. After that, the act is going to be trivial. It's good to have freeze removal flask for Lunaris area, in case you don't have it already. Kill the final boss of this act and proceed to Blood Acqueducts.
Preparing for maps:

The area with a long stream of blood is where you'll spend next 1-2 hours. It's a great place to farm experience. Look for gear upgrades and slowly replace your gems to recommended final setups. Before you proceed, you need a Tabula Rasa which you can farm in Blood Acqueducts OR you can buy 5-link bow with ilvl 64, high attack speed base if possible. The second option is better in general. On your newly purchased 5-link you can craft +2 to Level of Socketed Bow Gems with alteration/augmentation orbs. You should roll it within ~100 tries, still a bit RNG dependant. Or you can try buying the 5-link with specified mod already. The 5-link CA setup is:

CA - Vicious Projectiles - Void Manipulation - Swift Affliction - Efficacy

Now you're ready to get into maps. Progress through last 2 acts and face Izaro in merciless Labyrinth before the final fight. After you complete 3rd labyrinth, you should respec 1st frenzy ascedancy node. You can acquire all necessary points from side quests. When you're ready, defeat Kitava once and for all. 4000 life is enough to not get one-shot in both fights.

Mapping Progression
If you're here, i assume that you have at least lvl ~70 and CA gem lvl 17. Cursed Frenzy setup and Wither Totem should be included in your build as well. If you don't have all of them, you might find single target damage disappointing. This build is dependant on levels, especially if you're starting the league. Don't rush the content.

Before you begin mapping, it's wise to pack as many CA gems to level as possible (if you didn't already). Once they hit lvl 20, you can corrupt them with Vaal orbs for a chance to get lvl 21 gem. You can have up to 10 gems levelling at same time.

White maps:
Passive Tree Progression (level 80) - rush Phase Acrobatics

They shouldn't be a problem at all. Most map mods are trivial, running them blue is completely viable. No real danger outside of few challenging bosses. For this map tier, you have 3 very simple goals:

* 6-linked bow with +2 socketed bow gems (ilvl 64+)
* Correct Flask setup
* Carcass Jack / Cherrubim's Maleficence (optional)

It's possible that you've acquired money for all of them before killing Kitava. If not, simple unid chaos recipe should do the trick. Body armours are optional boost to damage/clear. They're meant to help you early on, only to be replaced once you engage harder content.

Your primary goal right now is acquiring 6-linked bow, it's very simple. Buy ilvl 64+ 6-link bow, then spam alts/augs to roll +2 bow gems (prefix). You should get it within ~100 alts. The links on the bow should look like this:

CA - Vicious Projectiles - Void Manipulation - Swift Affliction - Efficacy - Damage on Full Life

One of the things you should get are flasks with right mods. They're very important. Not having right flasks will heavily affect your survivability. 1 Divine Life Flasks with at bleeding removal, Jade Flask with at least 50% increased evasion and Stibnite Flask. Having these flasks means being evade chance capped.

Yellow maps:
Passive Tree Progression (level 89)

This is where you'll spend quite a lot of time, recommended level is 80-90. This map tier isn't too risky, but some map mods might be deadly without proper defences/damage. Goals for this tier:

* +3 gems 6-linked bow
* Avatar of Veil ascendancy (uber Labyrinth)
* Malevolence aura
* Level 21 CA gem
* 20% quality gems
* General gear upgrades

The +3 bow is the primary goal in yellow maps. You should craft it by yourself, as it's the cheapest way of acquiring one. Check crafting section for full details how to do it.

Once you have proper damage and defences, you can face Izaro inside uber Labyrinth. You will be safe as long as you dodge his attacks, which you should do with ease. Allocate remaining points in phasing path and ignore elemental ailments! Do not forget you need to have phasing/onslaught/maximum frenzy charges in order to gain the immunity.

After you acquire correct flask and only after that, you will be able to switch aura from Grace to Malevolence without hurting your defensive capabilities... If you haven't switched earlier. The new aura gives you significant damage boost.

Around the high tier yellow maps most of your gems will reach level 20. When that happens, the most important part is to vaal your maxed CA gems. Corrupting level 20 gem might increase it to 21, giving you significant damage boost.

Non-CA gems shouldn't be vaaled, quality is much more important on them. You can easily raise it with following vendor recipe (sell to shopkeeper):

Level 20 gem + 1 Gemcutter's Prism = Level 1 gem with 20% quality

It will lower your damage/defence for a short while, but within an hour or two there will be barely any difference at all with higher end game potential.

Do not forget about your other gear, it's equally important. Get more life and resistances, good jewels, CA helmet enchantment and all the other good stuff. Evasion gear is also important In short, upgrade it whenever you need, whenever you can.

Red maps:
Passive Tree Progression (level 94) - rush Crystal Skin

NOTE: Respec Piercing Shots notable and preceding small passive. By now you should definitely wear +1 pierce quiver. Combined with +1 pierce from small passive on the tree, this should be enough to clear reliably all but extremely dense monster packs.

Tier 11+ is where mapping becomes tough. Monsters can hit hard, map bosses become tanky, map mods are huge pain. Your damage should carry you through most maps easily, but the bosses combined with some map mods can be too scary. The 3 following goals of this map tier will fix all these issues tier:

* Wind Dancer keystone AND/OR Kintsugi
* Empower 3/4
* End game crafted gear

In that order. You only need one of the two, should be enough to mitigate majority of oneshots. Kintsugi can be used at any time, but is a quite expensive nowadays. Wind Dancer should only be used when combined with Dread Banner - Generosity combo to maintain 95% evade during mapping. You can still use both if you want to, your call.

Once you upgrade your defences, the next upgrade should be Empower gem. Level 3 is easily enough for majority of the content. Level 4 would be ideal, but it costs massive amounts of money. Price is very high early on and drops over time. Empower replaces Damage on Full Life OR Concentrated Effect, your call.

Lastly you should think about getting end game gear, starting with the bow. The bow is going to be expensive, but it's important for extra clear/damage. Besides that there's a lot of other big and small upgrades you can do. You can never run out of upgrades to make. Head to crafting section for more details.

After that, all you can do now is enjoy the build, kill some end game bosses and look for another build you want to play.

End Game Bosses/Maps Guide
As a rule, you're capable of killing pretty much any boss deathless. Scary red maps, end game bosses, all of them. Some of them are not worth the risk tho. Learn to skip them.
+3 6-linked bow is required.

Suggested gear:
* Atziri's Step with 6/8% spell dodge enchantment
* rare body armour with 10% spell dodge craft
* immunity to Corrupted Blood

Optional gem setup: Blink Arrow - Second Wind OR Flame Dash - Faster Casting

Totally doable without any changes, but extra preparation will give you significantly more room for errors. High spell dodge makes Sirus almost trivial and non-threatening, so get as much as you can. Unfortunately this fight will take a long time if you're using budget gear, especially at awakening level 8.

For gem setups, they aren't necessary if you play smart. Second Wind will again allow you to use Blink Arrow more freely. Flame Dash is overall best movement skill for Sirus or maybe even in general, so that's also an option.

There's many video tutorials for Sirus so i won't explain how to beat him. I'll give a tip instead - save your Blink Arrow for "Die" beam combo. Your high movement speed can deal with everything else.

Uber Elder:
Optional gem setup:
* Enduring Cry
* Aspect of the Crab
Optional Pantheon: Soul of Arakaali (recovery upgrade), Soul of Ralakesh

This is mostly mechanical fight. None of the above setups are required, just allow to make more mistakes and allow to handle the physical degen if you couldn't kill Elder's squids fast enough. Against Shaper balls, i recommend kiting. You're fast enough and playstyle allows for near indefinite kiting by simply running in circles. Everything else depends on your skill. You can do it.

Uber Atziri:
Optional gem setup: Petrified Blood

Thing with Atziri is, that she's mostly a mechanical fight. You can dodge almost anything... until RNG screws you over and you die. It's possible to kill her without getting hit at all (we got lots of speed after all), but you want to be prepared for anything. Petrified Blood gives extra reaction time and slightly reduces overall damage, Kintsugi and Wind Dancer reduce damage by another 20% each. It won't save you from everything, but gives you chance to actually take a single hit and live.

As for Alluring Abyss itself, the zone can be really dangerous. Take it slow, don't tank mobs. It's nothing too hard. Vaals are probably the hardest part to be fair. Trio is pretty easy, see Vaal Temple below.

Vaal Temple: Shouldn't be a problem. Additional speed, double damage mod, temp chains or twinned are probably too risky. Titty bitch -> Dual striker -> Cycloner. You can kite dual striker with Wither totem easily. Beware of Titty bitch's physical blade rain, it's good idea to remain mobile until it's on cooldown (after she casts it).

Map Mods
As i already mentioned before, we can run pretty much anything... within common sense. So no Twinned Core with LMP + Turbo + -10% max res + 2x 100% bonus ele dmg, or anything like this. We're not an immortal aura stacker. Technically possible but there's no reason to risk xp/character by running such maps.

I only mention actual deadly mods that you really gotta watch out for. Triple increased damage and stuff is obvious anyway.

Dangerous mods:

* Player Dodge chance is Unlucky / Monsters have #% increased Accuracy Rating
This is actually one of the hardest mods. Very noticeable in high tier maps or breaches etc. Onslaught path negates the problems for the most part, but spells are problematic.

* Monsters have #% increased Critical Strike Chance / +#% to Monster Critical Strike Multiplier
With high evasion, attacks should almost never crit you. Spells on the other hand benefit from it greatly, making it one of the most dangerous mods there is.

* Monsters fire 2 additional Projectiles
Scary mod on some bosses and monster types. Some monsters are still able to shotgun, like few new Oriath monsters. Other than that it's not too big of a deal.

* Players are Cursed with Vulnerability
This mod can very easily kill you, especially if you receive bleeding. You can run this map but be on your toes.

* Players are Cursed with Temporal Chains
Extremely annoying and likely best to avoid completely. You can easily negate it with Timetwist ring if you're against a really tough boss. Not sure if worth it tho.

* Area contains two Unique Bosses
This is dangerous mod in some maps as you know. You should be able to do majority of them quite easily. Some can be done safely only with enough damage.

* #% increased Monster Movement Speed / #% increased Monster Attack Speed / #% increased Monster Cast Speed
Extra speed equals to much higher chance of enemy being able to attack you. While it doesn't increase damage directly, it Speed might be deadly in some boss encounters. The faster boss is, the less damage you deal and the more time you spend kiting him. With temp chains + speed you might not be able to kite at all. Watch out for such combos.

* Players cannot Regenerate Life, Mana or Energy Shield
Not a deadly mod, but worth mentioning. You can do it easily, just bring mana flask instead.

Besides that, typical damage mod combinations shouldn't be understimated. Everything applies like to every other build out there.
https://www.pathofexile.com/forum/view-thread/3053600 - My Guides
Last edited by DankawSL on Feb 4, 2022, 1:29:46 PM
Last bumped on Dec 18, 2023, 7:46:48 PM

IMPORTANT NOTE: All videos have timestamps and character info in the description. Each video contains conqueror fight and map clear of his citadel.
Low budget is easily achievable in SSF, with exception of Empower 4. However extra damage it provides can easily be gained from other sources. Harvest gear is for showcase purposes mostly, getting similar gear now is realistically impossible.

3.15 Build Videos
Early maps, T3 Crusader

3.12 Build Videos
Low budget: Crusader / Redeemer / Warlord / Hunter / Awakener
Harvest geared: Crusader / Redeemer / Warlord / Hunter / Awakener

Path of Building (PoB)
PoB code:

This PoB is based on my character from Bestiary HC league. Some items are slightly different from the original for easier calculation and recommended gem setup. It has 2 gear setups, 2 CA gem setups and total 3 different bows available, depending on the budget. Budget equipment and typical crafted +3 CA bow is default.

It features 5 different passive trees, CA Raider is default. You can change them at any time for quick comparison. Number indicates required level for that tree. Levelling trees and cluster jewel focused trees are also available for convenience. For less cluter during comparisons between passive trees, the activated Jade Flask also removes Poison/Bleed/Crit/Leech.

In Calcs tab, "In Combat" calculation shows tooltip dps. "Effective DPS" shows fully buffed damage with 15 stacks of Wither and Despair against Shaper/Sirus. When checking dps for Double DoT Multi / Ultimate Bow do not forget to enable Empower support if using non-expensive CA setup. To see boss damage, simply look at DoT DPS number on the left or use "Effective DPS" in Calcs tab.

Crafting Section
How to craft your own gear. To remind:

Magic items can have 2 affixes: 1 prefix and 1 suffix
Rare items can have 6 affixes: 3 prefixes, 3 suffixes
To check what mod is prefix or suffix, enable Advanced Mod Descriptions in game (Options -> UI)

Additional resources:
Craft of Exile

In case you don't have required crafting recipes, ask a trusted mastercrafter. You can find them on forums under Trading -> [your league] - Shops. They'll require a small fee for their services.

+3 Bow crafting

NOTE: Fossil crafting method is currently the cheapest way to craft +3 bow. It's not 100% reliable, but usually costs only a fraction of classic method in the long run. Should take below 10 attempts to get one.

Fossil crafting:
Requirement: Non-influenced 6-linked bow ilvl 64+
Method: Corroded + Metallic + Jagged

Step 1: Spam 3-fossil combo until you hit +2 Socketed Bow Gems AND +1 Socketed Gems
Step 2: If you have 3 suffixes, use "Remove suffix, add prefix" beastcraft OR Orb of Annulment to remove the suffix. If you removed any prefix with orb, go back to step 1.
Step 3: Craft 31-35% Chaos Damage over Time Multiplier

NOTE: You can also use Prismatic Fossil instead of Jagged, but the bow HAS TO be within 64-82 ilvl.

Classic method:
Requirement: Non-influenced 6-linked bow ilvl 64+
Average cost: 2 exalts, ~200 alts, 4 chaos, few regals, few scours, few tens of augs

Step 1: Spam alts/augs until you hit +2 to Socketed Bow Gems (prefix)
Step 2: Add a suffix with augment orb if it doesn't have already
Step 3: Regal and pray for another suffix. If it's a prefix, scour the bow and return to step 1

Step 4: Craft "Cannot roll attack mods"
Step 5: Slam the bow with exalted orb for guaranteed +1 Socketed Gems
Step 6: Remove the crafted mod, and then craft 31-35% Chaos DoT Multiplier

Useful suffixes you might want on the bow:
* +#% to Fire/Cold/Light/Chaos Resistance
* #% increased Projectile Speed (makes CA feel more responsive)
* +# Life gained on Kill
* #% increased Attack Speed

Bow bases, from best to worst:
* Highest base attack speed OR Maraketh Bow (+10% MS)
* Lowest base attack speed

End Game Bow crafting
There are two key mods you want:

* Bow Attacks fire 2 additional Arrows (suffix, ilvl 86)
* +(31–35)% to Damage over Time Multiplier (suffix, ilvl 82)

Unfortunately there's room for only one of them. At the end of the craft you will also have crafted suffix "+(31–35)% to Chaos DoT Multiplier", so choose wisely.

Bow should have Hunter influence in order to craft 3rd useful prefix. If you're spending a lot of money, then spending a little extra for BiS item is recommended. Another option is to use Synthesised bow with "+1 to (Support / Bow / All) Gems". They'll cost significantly more for smaller gain so it's not recommended as a result.

Regardless of what you want to do, you should increase quality of the bow with perfect fossil or Hillock's transportation bench (25%+) and craft 15-18% quality mod. This will increase chance of 6-linking the bow, reducing the overall cost of crafting. Once the bow is 6-linked, proceed to real crafting:

Alt -> Regal Method (DoT Multi OR +2 Arrows)
Required: Hunter OR Non-influenced 6-linked bow ilvl 82+ (DoT Multi) / 86+ (+2 Arrows)
Average cost: 8-11 exalts, ~500-1500 alts, ~300-800 augs, 4 chaos, few regals, few scours

Step 1: Spam alts/augs until you hit "31-35% Damage over Time Multiplier" OR "Bow Attacks fire 2 additional Arrows"

Step 2: Regal the bow and make a decision:

* If you regaled suffix, go to step 3a.
* If you regaled prefix and want guaranteed method (2ex cost extra), go to step 3b.
* If you regaled prefix and want to use cheap but RNG reliant method, go to step 3a.

Step 3a: Use Orb of Annulment to remove unwanted affixes. If you removed modifier from step 1, go back to that step. If you succeeded, proceed to step 4.

Step 3b: Craft "Can have up to 3 Crafted Modifiers" and afterwards "Suffixes cannot be changed". Next, use Scouring Orb to remove prefixes and go to step 4.

Step 4: Craft "Can have up to 3 Crafted Modifiers" and afterwards "Cannot roll Attack mods". If you come from step 3b, then you will have first mod already crafted.

Step 5: Slam the bow with exalted orb:

* If bow is not influenced, slam once for guaranteed "+1 to Socketed Gems".
* If bow is Hunter influenced, slam twice for guaranteed "+1 to Socketed Gems" AND "#% increased Chaos DoT".

Step 6: Craft following mods in this order:

* Can have up to 3 Crafted Modifiers
* +2 to Level of Socketed Support Gems
* 31-35% Chaos Damage over Time Multiplier

Hunter Amulet

Hunter mods:
* +1 to Level of all Chaos Skill Gems (prefix, ilvl 82)
* +1 to Level of all Dexterity Skill Gems (prefix, ilvl 82)
* (13–16)% to Chaos Damage over Time Multiplier (suffix, ilvl 80)

This amulet is one of the primary reason why +5 bows aren't recommended. If you're about to craft this, prepare for A LOT of currency wasted. Crafting an amulet with all 3 of those mods and good life is going to be close to impossible. Settling on any 2 of those should be enough, but even then it'll cost a lot of money and time.

As always Alt -> Regal method should be the most reliable way to craft. For more random approach you can try spamming Aberrant fossils and hope to get something decent for cheap.

Alt -> Regal method
Requirement: Hunter influenced amulet ilvl 82+
Method: Aberrant

Step 1: Spam alts/augs until you hit at least one of the following mods:

* +1 to Level of all Chaos Skill Gems (prefix, ilvl 82)
* +1 to Level of all Dexterity Skill Gems (prefix, ilvl 82)
* (13–16)% to Chaos Damage over Time Multiplier (suffix, ilvl 80)

Step 2: In case you managed to get chaos DoT multiplier AND +1 level to gems, you should consider imprinting it with beastcrafting.
Step 3: Regal the amulet:

* In case you hit two +1 level mods, you should consider selling it for massive amounts of money or consider expensive metacrafting. If not, multicraft remaining mods.
* If you hit Chaos DoT Multiplier and +1 level, you can multicraft remaining mods.
* If you still have only one mod, scour the amulet and return to step 1.

Fossil crafting
Requirement: Hunter influenced amulet ilvl 82+
Method: Aberrant

Step 1: Spam Aberrant fossils until you have at least 2 desired mods.
Step 2: Craft life or any other mod you're missing at crafting bench
Step 3: In case you hit two +1 level mods, you should consider selling it for VERY BIG amount of money or consider very costly metacrafting.

Hunter Quiver crafting

You want these following mods:
* +(21–25)% to Chaos Damage over Time Multiplier (Hunter suffix, ilvl 82)
* +(16–18)% to Damage over Time Multiplier (suffix, ilvl 80)
* Projectiles Pierce an additional Target (Hunter prefix, ilvl 75)

First two mods are quite obvious and what you should be chasing for. Extra pierce is also worth mentioning, since with Penetrating base you can get total +2 arrows on a quiver. You could then respec pierce nodes from the passive tree. However getting all mods simultaneously is unlikely.

I highly recommend Alt -> Regal method since it's cheap and above all - reliable. You will get what you want eventually, but chance of getting ridiculous quiver is slim. Fossil crafting should be used only if you have a lot of currency to spare.

Alt -> Regal Crafting Method
Required: Hunter influenced quiver ilvl 82+

Step 1: Spam alts/augs until you hit at least one of the following:

* +(21–25)% to Chaos Damage over Time Multiplier
* +(16–18)% to Damage over Time Multiplier
* +80 to Maximum Life (or more)

Step 2: If you don't have 2 affixes yet, augment the bow.
Step 3: Regal the quiver:

* If you have at least 2 desired mods, proceed to next step.
* If you still have only one, scour the quiver and return to step 1.

Step 4: Depending on your mods and suffixes, do the following:

* If you don't have any life, craft 40-55 life at crafting bench and finish crafting.
* If you have life below 40 and both DoT multiplier suffixes, go to step 5a.
* If you have life and any 2 suffixes, craft remaining suffix and finish crafting.
* If you have life and any 1 suffix, go to step 5b.

Step 5a - Do in following order:
* Craft "Suffixes cannot be changed".
* Use Scouring Orb to remove prefixes.
* Craft 40-55 life at crafting bench and finish crafting.

Step 5b - You have two choices:
#1 - Craft suffix and finish crafting.
#2 - Craft an extra suffix with an exalted orb. You need to craft cheap prefix at crafting bench, afterwards use exalted orb, and then proceed with choice #1.

Fossil Crafting Method
Required: Hunter influenced quiver ilvl 82+
Method #1: Aberrant
Method #2: Aberrant + Corroded + Metallic

Step 1: Use the one of the methods until you hit two out of three following affixes:

* +(21–25)% to Chaos Damage over Time Multiplier
* +(16–18)% to Damage over Time Multiplier
* +80 to Maximum Life (or more)

Step 2: Craft anything you need on the remaining affix (assuming you have one)

First method should be used if you only want the suffixes. Second method blocks all prefixes except life and Hunter mods, it's better if you want higher chance of rolling life. Unfortunately there's high chance of rolling poison related suffix with second method.

Other useful mods you might want on the quiver:
* Bow Attacks fire an additional Arrow (Shaper/Warlord influence, ilvl 80)
* +#% to Fire/Cold/Light/Chaos Resistance
* #% increased Projectile Speed (makes CA feel more responsive)
* +# Life gained on Kill
* #% increased Attack Speed
* Projectiles Pierce 2 Additional Targets (Essence of Insanity)

Jewellery crafts
Hunter Belt
Fossil method: Pristine + Aberrant (optional)

Influenced mods:
* 8–10% increased maximum Life (Hunter/Elder)
* 26-30% increased Chaos Damage (Hunter)
* You take (21–30)% reduced Extra Damage from Critical Strikes (Warlord/Shaper)
* +(16–18)% to all Elemental Resistances (Elder)
* (16–20)% increased Life Recovery rate (Elder)

Crafted mods:
* 15–17% increased Damage
* 2% of Life Regenerated per second during any Flask Effect

With this method it's insanely easy to roll a decent belt in ~10-20 tries. Pristine fossil removes majority of bad mods and makes rolling Life mods really common. Aberrant is used to improve chances for chaos damage mod.

Influenced Ring
Crafting method: Chaos Orb spamming
Harvest method: Caster reforge
Fossil method: Aetheric + Pristine (optional)

Influenced mods:
* (30–35)% reduced Effect of Curses on you (Shaper/Crusader, ilvl 75 suffix)
* +(2–3)% chance to Evade Attacks (Elder, ilvl 68 suffix)

Crafted mods:
* 15–17% increased Damage
* 13–16% increased Chaos Damage

Reduced Curse effect is the best use of the ring slot now. Curses (map mod specifically) cannot be easily countered, this is one of the few ways to. You can also craft rings with additional Evade chance, but that shouldn't be necessary. Overall crafting rings can easily drive you insane due to insane mod pool preventing you from rolling multiple good modifiers. Best to leave it for later.

Armour crafts
Body Armour
Vaal implicits:
* You take 50% reduced Extra Damage from Critical Strikes
* (40–50)% increased Damage
* +1% to all maximum Resistances
* (4–6)% increased maximum Life

Considering we're using unique body armour and don't need it 6-linked, this is a great opportunity to acquire very powerful vaal implicits.

Both 40-50% damage and 50% reduced crit damage mods are chase mods, for offensive / defensive purposes respectively. Next up is +1% to maximum resistances, in short it reduces elemental damage by a small but in reality significant amount. 4-6% max life is always good to have if you don't have anything better.

Hunter Helmet
Crafting method: Alt -> Regal -> Multimod
Essence method: Screaming/Shrieking Essence of Greed
Fossil method #1: Aberrant
Fossil method #2: Pristine + Aberrant (opt)

Influenced mods:
* Nearby Enemies have -9% to Chaos Resistance (Hunter, ilvl 85 suffix)

Crafted mods:
* (18-21)% increased Evasion Rating / +(12–14) to maximum Life
* Projectiles Pierce an additional Target / +1 to Level of Socketed Projectile Gems
* 7–8% of Physical Damage from Hits taken as Fire Damage

With limited ways to reduce enemy's resistances, this mod is a huge damage boost. This is especially true in chaos resistant maps and against bosses. I think single fossil spam is the best choice. Aberrant for highest chance of rolling the mod or Pristine so once you hit the mod, it's likely to be a decent helmet. I suggest the former.

Elder/Hunter Gloves
Crafting method: Alt -> Regal -> Multimod
Fossil method #1: Aberrant + Pristine (opt) + Aetheric (opt)
Fossil method #2: Aetheric + Metallic (opt) + Pristine/Aberrant (opt)

Influenced mods:
* (13–16)% to Chaos Damage over Time Multiplier (Elder/Hunter, ilvl 80 suffix)
* (7–10)% chance to gain a Frenzy Charge on Kill (Elder/Redeemer, ilvl 84/80 prefix)

Crafted mods:
* (18-21)% increased Evasion Rating / +(12–14) to maximum Life
* (24–28)% increased Damage during any Flask Effect
* Projectiles Pierce an additional Target / +1 to Level of Socketed Projectile Gems

If you only want DoT multiplier, then Hunter is easier to roll. Elder if you want charges on kill as well, which is awesome QoL in general.

Alt -> Regal method always works in the long run if you want deterministically get something really good but not the best.

First fossil method focuses on crafting chaos DoT multiplier with optional bonus Aetheric to increase chances of rolling frenzy on kill mod.

The second fossil method is aimed for the latter mod. Aetheric and Metallic block bad prefixes from spawning. Pristine as always for higher chance of rolling life mods and removing defence mods. Aberrant for higher chance of rolling chaos DoT multi.

Elder Boots
Crafting method #1: Chaos Orb spamming
Crafting method #2: Alt -> Regal -> Multimod
Essence method: Screaming/Shrieking Essence of Greed
Fossil method: Pristine + Dense (optional)

Influenced mods:
* (7–10)% chance to gain an Endurance Charge on Kill (Elder/Redeemer, ilvl 83/80 prefix)
* (9–10)% chance to Dodge Spell Damage (Elder/Redeemer, ilvl 83/80 suffix)

Crafted mods:
* (18-21)% increased Evasion Rating / +(12–14) to maximum Life
* (20–24)% increased Movement Speed
* (17–20)% increased Movement Speed / (6–9)% increased Movement Speed if you haven't been Hit Recently

Elder influence is easier to roll in general.

Great defensive craft. There's no tricks to easily craft these unfortunately. I suggest chaos spam or alt -> regal if you have something specific in mind. High life, desired mod and movement speed/open prefix are the key mods. 20%+ MS can be crafted, it's enough for the build. Essences will guarantee high life roll, but might be really costly.

You can also use fossils if you only care about endurance charge on kill. It'll remove nearly all prefixes (elder), making it somewhat easy to hit movement speed and charges. Craft 70 life / movement speed mod afterwards.

Other crafts (Jewels, Flasks)
Jewels / Abyssal Jewels
Crafting method: Alt -> Regal
Fossil method: Aberrant + Pristine (opt)

Jewels have a really high pool of mods, so prepare for a lot of failed attempts. Just keep spamming Aberrants until you hit 5-7% maximum life. Adding Pristine is probably not worth it, however it will make crafting easier for sure.

Crafted mods:
* 3% of Life Regenerated per second during Flask Effect
* (20–25)% reduced Mana Cost of Skills during Flask Effect
* 50% Chance to avoid being Stunned during Flask Effect

There's not much to say. All 3 of those mods can be really, really good. 3% Life regen is amazing, equals ~2 mods on gear. Mana cost reduction should solve any mana problems during mapping. Stun avoidance can potentially save your life if you receive a heavy hit. These mods can only be acquired by unveiling unique flask that drops only from Syndicate Mastermind.

I should probably mention, use Beastcrafting for easy Warding/Staunching mods on your flasks. Simply roll a right prefix and finish it off in menagerie.

Q: Is this build good for a new player?
A: Yes. Assuming you understand basics of Path of Exile, this build should carry you through whole content. Caustic Arrow is really strong right now and that means forgiving, allowing you to be slightly inefficient and still have a great time.

Q: How about additional Toxic Rain setup?
A: Can be possible with some sacrifices. Toxic Rain has huge mana consumption, so you would need quite a lot of investment to sustain it. It also requires small passive tree changes in order to scale Toxic Rain's damage to reasonable levels.

Q: How about scaling Herald of Agony minion?
A: This build does not focus on poison and therefore Herald of Agony isn't going to be very reliable or powerful tool. The opportunity cost is simply too high.

Primary issues are virulence stack generation and high mana reservation cost (4-link+) or underwhelming damage (3-link or worse). You can convert the build to include the scorpion, but it's not worth it at all.

Q: How do i know that i'm evade chance capped?
A: Check your character sheet (C) and find estimated chance to evade attacks. With flasks activated you need ~71% to be capped, or ~62% if you're also using Dread Banner. That's assuming you have Avatar of Chase's 35% more chance to evade. That buff is not included in those calculations.

I did not include 20% less monster accuracy while phasing debuff as it should be treated as an extra buffer against certain monster/map mods.

Q: I have problems sustaining mana, what can i do?
A: Allocating Druidic Route, Primal Spirit and using Clarity should solve all your mana issues. If not, a single or max two ~40% mana regen mod modifier on jewellery is going to be sufficient.

If the problem persists, that's due to incorrect playstyle. Only a single cloud can deal damage at the same. Your job is to spread degen or reapply it right before previous one expires, not to spam it.

Another option is to use mana flask with "Enduring" prefix, in that case Clarity is not necessary. There's no way you'll run out of mana with that flask.

Q: What's the purpose of Barrage Support inside Cursed Frenzy setup?
A: Barrage eliminates a problem of not hitting enemies due to ~80-90% accuracy. Quicker and easier to animation also allows you to be more mobile when you need. You're free to use GMP / Greater Volley instead.

Q: What is Caustic Arrow's cloud scaling with?
A: It's a degeneration area that scales off DoT / chaos / projectile / area / global damage increases. It's not a poison and doesn't scale with it.

It's not an attack itself, but the gem has an attack tag allowing it to be scaled with chaos / DoT increases with attack/bow skills. I know it's a bit confusing, but it's exactly what i said.

Q: Path of Building (PoB) gives me an error when loading your build!
A: Then it means you're using original PoB which is no longer updated. You should download Community PoB Fork version which is up to date and has significantly more features.

Q: How good is this build for magic finding?
A: Depends. It won't outperform specialized MF builds that run a single map in 1 minute. Caustic Arrows clear abilities are simply limited compared to other skills. However you can use few very effective pieces of MF gear in order to get bonus loot without any real drawbacks to the build itself, allowing you to safely run high tier content. The recommended MF gear:

2x Ventor's Gamble, IIQ Shaper Amulet, Divination Distillate
Max IIQ: 48%
Max IIR: 170%

I would bother with any other setup. MF flask requires lower mana regeneration in order to give you any benefits.

Q: Where can i find 31-35% Chaos DoT Multiplier and +2 Socketed Support Gems crafts?
A: Both of them can be acquired through unveiling items. Chaos DoT Multi can appear on any weapon, relatively easy to acquire. +2 Levels to Socketed Support Gems is a Mastermind exclusive mod, so unlocking it will take a lot of time or luck. Item level 80+ items can give you +2 levels. Below ilvl 80 items only have +1 level.

Q: What do you think about Impresence amulet? What about Despair aura?
A: It's a good amulet that's usually quite expensive. It's main attribute is 0 mana reservation for Despair and really good stats. However it's not worth it's cost. Everything should be dead before it gets into range of Despair aura. For bosses we use Cursed Frenzy setup.

The stats on amulet are good but it's possible to craft better one with Essence of Envy on a better base.

Q: Why do you take Master of the Arena node on passive tree?
A: For life regen and little bit of strength. Life regen is great for mitigating small degens for Damage on Full Life and defensive purposes. Strength for easier gearing and that little bit of life you get.

Q: Why don't you pick X node on the passive tree?
A: Because jewels are better, period. I provide level 93 tree that's as efficient as possible, many people won't even reach it. If you're above that level, it probably means you have resources to make or buy good jewels that will be worth using over the nodes you have in mind.

Q: I have troubles progressing through acts / maps, what can i do?
A: Get more life and resists on gear, that's the most common answer to this question. If you've followed the guide, the damage shouldn't be a problem at all. That's true especially in maps.

Not having enough defense is a common mistake among new players. All you gotta do is buy or find gear with high life and/or resistances on them. 75% resists is pretty much required starting from act 5. When it comes to life, the more the better.

Q: Levelling passive trees have Piercing Shots notable, but not your final tree. Why is that?
A: You need at least 2 pierces for Caustic Arrow to clear comfortably. You can easily achieve it with +1 pierce small passive leading to Piercing Shorts and Penetrating Arrow Quiver. However finding a good quiver during levelling / early mapping is not guaranteed, especially for new players. That's why i recommend to respec it once you reach red maps, because you'll surely find/buy a good one before that.

Q: Is it good for party play?
A: Should be OK for ~3-4 man party. 5-6 is doable but not that great.

These are questions i've been asked a lot by random people i've spoke to in game. Keep more questions coming.

To do list (for myself mostly)
* Minor adjustments everywhere i guess? I bet i've messed up somewhere.

* Better formatting for the guide, second wave (colors in big sections, i guess?) ON HOLD, kinda looked bad when i tried. Maybe later.

* How about you finally do that video guide?

* Proof read every single time there's a new big update.
July 30th, 2021
* Added first Expedition video, T3 Crusader (early mapping).

Path of Building
* Updated PoB link.
* Fixed cluster jewel implicits, which caused medium cluster notables to not appear on related passive trees.
* Chaos DoT medium cluster jewel now has Wicked Pall instead of Brush with Death (+Flow of Life, unchanged).
* Updated flask suffixes to new values.

July 27th, 2021
Passive Tree:
* Updated cluster jewel information.
* Removed "Exposure Therapy" cluster notable, as after nerf it's straight up weaker than generic "Student of Decay".
* Added "Utility" notables category for CDoT cluster jewel, and listed new Eldritch Inspiration there as well.

* Updated crafted Flask mod that grants 50% chance to avoid stuns, it no longer gives movement speed.

July 26th, 2021
Gem Setups:
* Reverted Clarity changes and added some extra information.

* Reverted mana flask change, it's not necessary.
* Updated commentary, now i also mention craft flask mods and Dying Sun being hard to keep up permanently.

Path of Building:
* Updated PoB link
* Replaced two end game bows with a single "Crafted Hunter CA Bow". This reflects changes to crafting section.
* Updated flasks modifiers. Stibnite and Quicksilver flasks have no suffixes, as they're preference based.

Crafting Section:
* Updated +3 CA Bow and End Game Bow crafting.
* End Game Bow crafting is now for Hunter OR Non-influenced bows. Synthesised bows are also included and mentioned, as "Synthesis" is not an influence.
* Removed DoT Multi with +2 Arrows crafting method. It's still possible to craft (with Chaos DoT multi as 3rd suffix!), but i cannot recommend something that costs mirror worth of exalts or better.
* Changed "Elder Ring" (obligatory OHHHHH, ELDER RING) to "Influenced Ring". Now i recommend going for" 30-35% reduced Effect of Curses" found on Shaper and Crusader influence.

July 23rd, 2021 - Expedition League
* Single target damage changed from "Mediocre" to "Low".
* Build no longer can run any map mod, it's just "almost all". Well, it can run any map mod but some risks are not worth taking.

Passive Tree
* New tree! It now sacrifices 3 life nodes at Duelist starting area for Crystal Skin cluster (no ignite immunity, it's optional). Level increased from 93 to 94.
* Cluster Jewels adjusted. Looks like only heavy investment is worth it.

Gem Setups:
* Clarity level 10 cap removed. It's now an option to using Mana Flask.
* Withering Rain removed, lost a lot of value by 60% -> 30% movement speed slow nerf.
* 6-link Cursed Frenzy changed to "Expensive" Cursed Frenzy.

* Adjustments to flasks. Stibnite and Jade required, Quicksilver recommended but swappable.
* Mana flask is now used instead of second life flask.
* Removed Writhing Jar unique flask.
* Updated recovery mods on Watcher's Eye.

Map Mods:
* Updated Vulnerability and Temp Chains curses, they're once again scary.

Path of Building:
* PoB link updated - https://pastebin.com/DFFgd8EN
* Passive Tree updated to 3.15 version.
* Flasks will be updated later when community adjusts the mods.

Changelog's... changes:
* Due to constant updates and usually long list of changes, i'm removing old updates from it.
* You can still find archived 3.13 build with changelog on page 317 inside archived guide.

Final words

I'm really glad i've made this guide. I've spent tens of hours at this point, improving and polishing it to be the best it can possibly be. It wasn't the guide alone that improved over time, but the build itself too. I'll keep updating it for as long as i can.

Of course, a big thank you to all people who are lurking and people who contacted me one way or another. No doubt that this guide wouldn't be the same if it wasn't for you, giving me a reason to do my best.

Thanks for checking out the build, i hope you've had fun using it!
https://www.pathofexile.com/forum/view-thread/3053600 - My Guides
Last edited by DankawSL on Jul 30, 2021, 6:24:12 PM
love the build what do you think about the impresence dot dmg amulet i love it great work
Impresence looks like a good amulet to start the league with. It's pretty good stat wise (high HP, high DoT, Onyx base) and the free Despair blasphemy. It's a better alternative to Witchfire Brew i've been suggesting for early mapping, if you lack the damage. With it and jade flask you should be able to run through mobs and curse without a fear of dying at all.

However, in the long run it doesn't feel like it's worth it. You could craft a better amulet with an Envy essence, on a better base (Marble/Agate). Blasphemy still has the annoying issue of cancelling your CoH curse, and you should be able to kill monsters outside of it's range in end game anyway. Same goes for Maddening Presence.
https://www.pathofexile.com/forum/view-thread/3053600 - My Guides
Last edited by DankawSL on Feb 28, 2018, 5:53:27 PM
Guide updated to 3.2

In case it's not your first time checking out this guide, i've been constantly updating and upgrading it over the last month. What changed, starting from most important 3.2 improvements:

Raider ascendancy:
* 3.2 made Onslaught path a viable choice now. Previously it sucked for bosses, now with 14 second duration the uptime should be close to permanent. Requires The Green Dream for frenzy charge generation

Levelling/progress section:
* Completely re-done. Covers everything from fresh league start, through mapping into end game boss/map guide.

* Plenty of them added. Chayula/Uber Atziri, T15 maps, HOGM. I will re-record most of them this league.

Added Other Ascendancy Classes:
* In case you want play different one. This skill tree can be used by any other good ascendancy. Buffed Trickster is obviously main contestant here.

And many other small tweaks everywhere. You can find full changelog in 2nd post.
https://www.pathofexile.com/forum/view-thread/3053600 - My Guides
Last edited by DankawSL on Feb 28, 2018, 6:12:53 PM
Are you going to do this build on 3.2? I'm willing to try it as well, never played CA so :) Also good job on the guide!
Is leveling with bows superior to leveling with ED/Contagion and just going for the endgame tree right away?
Are you going to do this build on 3.2? I'm willing to try it as well, never played CA so :) Also good job on the guide!

Yep, as always. Want to test onslaught path and maybe try my chances against uber elder. If you need anything, just ask.

Is leveling with bows superior to leveling with ED/Contagion and just going for the endgame tree right away?

Assuming you're going Raider, then yes:

#1 - Ranger doesn't get them as a quest reward, so you would need to buy them from Siosa.
#2 - You'll be handicapped by quite a lot of passive tree points early on.
#3 - Getting through act 2 and 3 would be even bigger pain in the ass than it is now.

If you want to play as Trickster, then it should be very much viable. I don't have experience with it tho.
https://www.pathofexile.com/forum/view-thread/3053600 - My Guides
Big fan of the looks of this build, I am however interested in taking the trickster route instead. However the linked tree starts from raider, how to I adapt the tree for trickster, do I take the chaos damage nodes and skip the first raider nodes?

Simply take shadow's starting chaos nodes and follow the rest of the tree. Trickster has a lot of freedom when it comes to skill tree, as his damage is kinda nuts. You can skip damage nodes for life and vice versa. My 2 recommended choices:

#1 Tree - Stick with original ranger route. Nice QoL with decent life+evasion.
#2 Tree - Pick up Scion's life wheel instead. Should give ~20% increase life in the long run.

Choice is yours.
https://www.pathofexile.com/forum/view-thread/3053600 - My Guides

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