[3.3] IcyBerserker - Up to1.3M shaper DPS with Tabula Rasa - Budget to Endgame

This post is still on updating! I will post my update in reply, and maybe integrate it later in the main post.
PoB is available below.
Check "10. Some Variant" part to see my latest Double Strike set.

What I have done with this build:

Red tier Elder's guardians (Deathless except 1 death on The Eradicator, all with Tabula Rasa)
Red tier Elder (Deathless with Tabula Rasa)
Guardian of the Phoenix(Deathless with Tabula Rasa)

Hi everyone! This is my first build post and this post is still in building process. Once I find a reliable way to upload pictures there will be more pic in this post!
I'm not an English speaker. Sorry for my poor language skill.

This is a build defined as a middle or low budget one. That's the reason I choose berserker instead of champion - the upper limit is low for berserker, but the lower limit is higher than champion. That means even with poor gears it can still reach a relatively satisfying level of DPS.
If you are searching for a powerful build that can go through everything in the game like a breeze, this build may not be your best choice. It can do endgame contents but not super easy(I mean, you will possibly die before finally finish it or find it requiring manual operation).

Thanks for the inspiration from corosou. He helps me a lot on playing this game and making this build.
1. Some pre-talk: What's interesting in this build?
Berserker and Frost Blades have been spammed for long. Even though there are some new ideas in my build that make it worth a try.

Malachai's Artifice

This is a ring that can give you a 75% effect Elemental Equilibrium, which means mobs can get -37.5% reduced resistance if you use it correctly. This is a significant increase to our cold damage as a berserker instead of an Elementalist or Inquisitor because we don't have much penetration from passives. In other words, you can think it as a substitute of Cold Penetration Support which will occupy one of your sockets in a 6-link. It is a deal between a socket and life+added physical damage.

This ring causes 20% reduced elemental resistance but also gives you high resistance of a single element. In all, the resistance you need to fix is 15%~40% lower, and the gears you need are more likely to have high single elemental resistance instead of 2~3, which is much cheaper.

Red Trail

The reason I choose it is mainly the frenzy charge obtaining roll. I like frenzy charge. Every of it gives 4% MORE damage and 4% increased attack and cast speed.

With all the 5 frenzy charges activated in this build, it actually gives 20%+ MORE damage. For mapping we have Blood Rage for frenzy charges; but how when bossing?

Wait... you may have thought of Frenzy or new Vaal Cold Snap or something. I know them too but the frenzy charges themselves are not the only thing I want. I have more things to do with them.

The first and the most important thing is "AUTOMATING". After several tries on several builds, I recognize that although there are many added mechanics that boost your DPS, you can't really apply all of them. The reason is, more keys and timers you need to notice, less "effective attack time" you have, and that actually lower your DPS. Take my Inquisitor as an example. I need to place the totem every 10 seconds, Orb of Storm every 4 seconds, and use Frenzy every 5 seconds to sustain my frenzy charges, activate Blood Rage every 9 seconds and keep an eye on my golem… these works keep disturbing me when I’m attacking the Minotaur. As a result, I’m killed or can’t deal damage at all because too many things need to notice and that’s not what I want at first when I’m introducing these mechanics. While in this build, I use many Cast When Damage Taken and Red Trail to automate them for a better game experience.

The other reasons I use Red Trail is that there are two ways to consume frenzy charges for damage boost in this build: Phase Run and Rotgut.

Phase Run is a buff that gives you insane 30% MORE melee physical damage in its second effect duration. It’s quite short (0.2s base duration) but can be extended by consuming frenzy charges. With all the 5 frenzy charges consumed, it reaches a decent duration of 1.2s compared with the 4s cooldown.
Rotgut is a unique flask that consume all of your frenzy charges and gives you Onslaught(20% increased attack, cast and movement speed) for a period based on the charges number it consumes (2s per consumed frenzy charge).

These two mechanics insanely boost your damage but with the cost of many frenzy charges, which can’t be covered only by Frenzy or Vaal Cold Snap. But with Red Trail and very fast attack speed we can meet the need without any extra cost.
2. Playstyle and how it works
Go straight forward and sweep all the things on your way! With several decent defensive mechanics we can ignore almost any threats. When you want more damage against single target, set Ancestral Protector (more attack speed) and Orb of Storm (-37.5% cold resistance), and see your enemy broken up!

Defensive mechanics
Instant leech – The instant leeching itself is a very strong defensive mechanics which ignores any leech limit and helps you ignore any damage that cannot oneshot you. No wonder GGG nerfed it since 3.1…

Enfeeble – Maybe the best defensive curse in this game. It reduces accuracy, critical strike chance, critical strike multiplier of the cursed enemies and ANY damage they deal by 30%+.

Arctic Armour – When stationary it causes 13% less physical damage and 12% fire damage from hit for you. As a berserker with instant leech, we are always stationary in fight so it’s always there.

Offensive mechanics
Berserker ascendancy - Up to 100% increased damage + 50% increased attack speed and the most important thing: 40% MORE damage.
Frenzy charge - Each frenzy charge gives 4% MORE damage + 4% increased attack speed, and we have 5 frenzy charges and are able to sustain it in any situation. Also, we have more ways to fully use them (I mean, Phase Run and Rotgut)
Doryani's Catalyst - Up to 132% increased elemental damage together with up to 330+ pDPS!

Cold resistance scaling - Include Malachai's Artifice, passives, Frost Bomb, and the 30% cold penetration from threshold jewels. These things can lower shaper and guardians' cold resistance down to lower than -60%!

Intimidate - This is a debuff that cause intimidated enemies take 10% increased damage. Notice that it is "take increased damage" so it's a independent damage multiplier like 10% MORE damage rather than added with our own increased damage.

3. Shortcomes(including map mod issues)
1. May not be so good in Hardcore. I’m a softcore player so the survival issues is the second to consider.

2. The instant leech is not always there because the Frost Blades mechanics. When linked with Multistrike Support, it attacks 3 times with main-hand and 3 times with off-hand, which means you get instant leech for 3 hits every 6 hits. In most of the time it doesn’t matter much but in very tough situations (like Guardians, Shaper or harder boss fight) your life pool can’t make it until the next 3 instant leech hits and you get killed. So for toughest fight I switch to Dual Strike or Blade Flurry for the highest DPS and constant instant leech.

3. Life degeneration may be frustrating. This is not deadly but it does frustrate you, especially in maps with “less regeneration” or “vulnerability” mods. I use a life flask to keep safe from this.

4. Gem switching. For highest DPS against a single target, you need to use Melee Physical Damage Support instead of Ancestral Call Support. But this switch can be annoying to some people. Choose either playstyle you like.

5. It’s not the best set for the toughest boss. This build can do up to T16 easily but the DPS is not very satisfying against Shaper. As mentioned before, I switch to Dual Strike or Blade Flurry for the highest DPS. And for the sake of damage conversion, some other gears need to be switched.

Map mods that I don't like and can't do
Mods I don't like(but doable):

1. Players have Elemental Equilibrium(your attack will overwrite the effect from Malachai's Artifice and make it a totally +25% for any mobs)

2. Players have 60% less recovery rate of life and energy shield(the degeneration from blood rage and rages will be a problem)

3. Players are cursed with Vulnerability(the same reason, that Vulnerability increases the damage from blood rage)

4. Players cannot regenerate life, mana or energy shield

Mods I can't do:

1. Cannot leech life/mana from monsters
2. Monsters reflect % of elemental damage

4. Path of Building
Here is my current PoB stats:

5. Gear

My gears now

Recommended gears

6. Gem link
Frost Blades-Multistrike-Elemental Damage with Attack Skills-Elemental Focus-Damage On Full Life/Ruthless-Ancestral Call/Melee Physical Damage
Cast When Damage Taken (lv.20)-Blood Rage-Summon Stone Golem

Cast When Damage Taken (lv.1)-Frost Bomb (lv.1)-Immortal Call (lv.1)

Hatred-Arctic Armour-Ancestral Protector

Whirling Blades-Blood Magic-Fortify(-Faster Attack)

Cast When Damage Taken (lv.1)-Bladefall (lv.1)-Curse On Hit-Enfeeble (lv.20)

7. Passive Tree
Level 91 tree

Recommended steps for building passives
I like to grab Resolute Technique as early as possible since accuracy rating is a very frustrating problem when leveling, especially for league starter.Then I go to Scion and grab the 3 resistance nodes.

The next direction is up to you. Go for the one-handed damage near marauder or go upward for more life and some damage.

Then I reach Duelist and grab more dual wielding damage, life and resistance nodes and then go right for the remaining cold penetration and physical to cold conversion.

Complete other nodes on higher levels.

Don’t pick +1 frenzy charge nodes until you get Red Trail.
Once you get two threshold jewels – “Fight for Survival”, you can pick the jewel sockets near Scion and Duelist and put them there. I don’t recommend picking any jewel sockets before this unless you get a decent jewel that is worth your one or two passive points.

8. Jewel

There is a threshold jewel of Frost Blades named "Fight for Survival". Use 2 of this to get the 30% cold penetration with melee attack part, which is a huge boost.

Considering the budget, you only need to find jewels with any 3 of them:
#% increased maximum life
#% increased attack speed (with one-handed weapons/with melee weapons/while dual wielding)
#% increased physical damage (with one-handed weapons/with melee weapons/while dual wielding)
resistance or intelligence

By the way, I prefer life+attack speed+resistance. And you can switch to more powerful jewels whenever you want, just be sure your resistance is capped and intelligence is more than 155.

9. Pantheon

Major God: Soul of the Brine King
Since we don't have stun immunity together with the ascendancy "Aspect of Carnage", we choose this god to avoid possible continuous stun in mob packs. You can also choose Soul of Lunaris for more physical damage reduction.
Minor God: Soul of Gruthkul. Physical damage reduction, nothing special. I choose it because there is no better choice.

10. Some Variants
1. Projectile-damage-focused version
This idea is from corosou. He makes very strong endgame builds for marauder. Here is his build post:

In this version we use "Grelwood" and make some skill link change to focus more on projectile damage. It’s perfect for pure mapping.

Path of Building pastebin: https://pastebin.com/vjMA7R4j

2. Blade Flurry/Dual Strike version (also for other non-conversion skills)
This version uses Blade Flurry or Dual Strike for the highest single-target damage. Since these skills don’t have damage conversion, we need Hrimsorrow along with passives to reach 90% physical to cold conversion. That means we have to give up Tombfist and the “intimidate” on it. If you are more focused on damage and do not care too much about survival, I recommend Belt of The Deceiver for the intimidate effect. You can also keep the Cyclopean Coil for better defense statistics.

Path of building: https://pastebin.com/staU1NsV

3. Double Strike version (For higher tier farming and tough fights)

Last edited by zhang8218923 on Jun 17, 2018, 7:47:15 AM
Last bumped on Jun 21, 2018, 9:57:07 AM
Dropping some love for my homie's first venture into build guide making...

Looking good yo! Keep that shit up ;)

Last edited by corosou on Jun 4, 2018, 11:19:18 PM
corosou wrote:
Dropping some love for my homie's first venture into build guide making...

Looking good yo! Keep that shit up ;)

:D very happy to get ur support!
Here comes my current character in Incursion league.



I have made several changes on this build.

You can find that I switch to Dual Strike. The main reason is the incursion. Mobs in temple are too strong to facetank with instant leech in only half of the time. In normal map it doesn't matter indeed, but every time I got into the incursion my life pool was shot to empty by those chaos damage mobs(I didn't care much about chaos resistance so most of the time it's -60%) and I can't always leech it back instantly. This is kind of the "tough fight" I mentioned before so I choose Dual Strike for it.
The Dual Strike link is:
Dual Strike - Multistrike - Melee Physical Damage - Elemental Damage with Attack Skills - Elemental Focus - Damage on Full Life(single target)/Ancestral Call(mapping)

Now I'm farming maps around tier 10 so most of the time I don't really use Damage on Full Life. The mapping set is enough.

Another big change is that I dropped Arctic Armour and use a 4 linked Ancestral Warchief for more damage. I'm not sure if this is a better change, but it works well currently, giving more damage against rare mobs in temple.
The Ancestral Warchief link is:
Ancestral Warchief - Melee Physical Damage - Elemental Damage with Attack Skills - Concentrated Effect

I also made some change on passive tree.
1. Put the 3 passives from the "armour, evasion and all elemental resistance" in duelist realm(beside Golem's Blood) to the "fire, cold and all resistance" in marauder realm(on the left side of Unwearying Stance).
2. Drop the frenzy chanrge and jewel sockets in ranger realm(the most right side of the whole passive tree) for now and pick Unwearying Stance. On level 90 I can still pick the frenzy charge but drop the jewel socket and maybe a 4% life node.

More and more I feel it is so important to be immune to stun... I have to give up some damage for it.
Last edited by zhang8218923 on Jun 11, 2018, 12:45:44 AM
Change 1.2. Mainly focused on bleeding mechanics.
First of all, here comes my current gears in Incursion league.

The Red Trail makes you have a chance to be inflicted bleeding when attacked. So that means I need to wait for mobs to attack me several times, otherwise I can't sustain my frenzy charge in boss fight?

No... I found a solution. The Golden Rule.

This is an unique jewel that can reflect bleeding that inflicted by yourself. More important thing is, the bleeding damage from yourself is much lower than that from mobs. This reflected bleeding will overwrite the previous ones so that gives more safety(how much lower? Now I can move around with the bleeding on me and worry about nothing!)

Wait again... how can we inflict bleeding?
I'm not using Frost Blades, but Double Strike. Then use Hrimsorrow, together with passive I get 90% physical to cold convert. The 10% left physical damage can inflict bleeding. In the meantime, use Chance to Bleed on my Double Strike link to get the bleeding chance. Besides, use Melee Splash to replace Melee Physical Damage when mapping.
Seems like a big damage loss right?
Actually with these changes I get even 100k higher DPS! The reason is within the mechanics of Double Strike: Add flat physical damage to bleeding enemies.

And you see, the Vaal Double Strike can create 2 clone of me which using Double Strike for 8s. This even further improves my single target DPS(and makes mapping funny lmao)!

Now that we only using main-hand weapon(Double Strike strict), we can put a pure support weapon in off-hand. The shaper/elder weapon will be the best choice, giving me tons of DPS.

Last edited by zhang8218923 on Jun 12, 2018, 1:58:26 AM
Adding some small but significant changes.

As you see, I dropped the 2 life nodes and pick the bleeding and poison chance nodes below(I'm not sure whether I can pick only 2 of them. Need to test more).
This change allows me to drop Chance to Bleed in my Double Strike link and replace it with Damage on Full Life, which leads to a significant damage improvement.

This is my damage comparison. Notice that these are all done with Tabula Rasa

Mapping set before change:

Mapping set after change:

Single-target set before change:

Single-target set after change:

A new problem is the poison. With the Golden Rule jewel, the poison we inflict is reflected on ourselves, and sadly our chaos resistance is always -60% or -25%(with Atziri's Promise, but still very low).
For this problem, I change the pantheon:

Immune to poison!
I also change my major god to Arakaali, for more DoT mitigation. According to my game experience, DoT is more dangerous than hit damage for a instant leech build.

I got this offhand sword with 15c:

which has a 15% chance to cause bleeding. And I drop the bleeding chance in passives. But it seems not enough to proc bleeding on a single target with 15% chance to bleed.

So here is my final set:
Pick only 15% in passives and use a 15% chance offhand weapon.

Last edited by zhang8218923 on Jun 15, 2018, 10:05:04 PM
Spend 5c to get this :D

So I can use only CWDT + Bladefall to apply Enfeeble!

Now both Enfeeble and Arctic Armour is online :D The life loss in last reply is kinda fixed.
I found a lv.8 Vorici service to recraft my corrupted Bloodseeker to fit the new sockets settings.

And I dropped Immortal Call for an extra socket, then put on my Arctic Armour.
There is a fatal mistake in my previous skill set:

"Add 6 to 15 cold damage to SPELLS and attacks"

This roll adds cold damage to my Orb of Storm. So with Hrimsorrow, the Orb of Storm is actually increasing mob's cold resistance by 18.75%. That's stupid and I didn't find it until today.

I've change Orb of Storm to Summon Lightning Golem (while giving up stone golem). As a minion, lightning golem is not affected by your added cold damage so now it really works as a -37.5% cold resistance reduction. The drawback is that now I have to manually summon the golem, while the advantage is that I don't need to cast a spell every 9 seconds. Anyway, it's not bad until now.

The previous socket for Summon Stone Golem is empty and I put a Spirit Offering in it for extra minion ES and resistance. It helps a little when mapping but is not mandatory. Use anything you want in this socket.

BTW, I've done a little change in passives. PoB tells this gives higher DPS.

The notable point below previous dual wielding cluster gives "26% increased attack damage with mainhande weapon, 20% increased attack speed with offhande weapon". The 20% attack speed is far too better than 26% attack damage but we attack with only mainhand weapon with Double Strike. So thats not very profitable to use 4 points to reach the final notable passive.
Last edited by zhang8218923 on Jun 15, 2018, 10:16:40 PM

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