[3.3] Cast While Channelling with reworked skills

[3.3] Is this innovative enough?? A Cast While Channelling build. For fun.

You ever wanted to play a melee build but have ranged damage? U no like sunder and blade flurry? You want to try a new skill (rework) and have some fun with a mechanic that’s unique to just one skill so far. Do you want a hybrid build that utilizes both attacks and spells and scales both within one setup? Keep on reading.

So I made this build to try some of the ‘’new’’ skills at the same time, since I didn’t have a lot of time at the start of the league. The build turned out way better than expected so I made this guide. Also worth mentioning; I made it to clear packs and incursions, not end game bosses and as such it does just that (although it can take out map bosses fast and easy as well in general).

The core of the build is Charged Dash, Cast When Channelling, Detonate Dead using an Oro’s Sacrifice sword. The idea is you run around; spot a pack, start channelling into the pack, mobs start dying and when they do, you start exploding them, killing everything that remains or enters the area. For tougher foes it uses Vaal Detonate Dead to oneshot those. I’ll explain more below.

Movement skill and damage skill combined (aka. one button clearing).
Fantastic AoE.
Easy targeting.*
Safe farming from a distance
Big on utility and quality of life options.
Ample room for variation with gear.
Cheap to run, with options to upgrade.
Charged dash was tweaked so you could bend the trajectory; which is very nice.

Don’t try elemental reflect maps. Ever.
Not so nice versus bosses with phases or mobility which messes up your vaal DD charge.
When you release Charged dash, you could end up in danger (use with care).
My version is dodge and evasion based so sometimes you just get one-shotted.
It’s Charged dash; using it makes you faster than walking, but you gotta stand still first so it doesn’t feel like it is.

* Detonate Dead targets corpses near the cursor or where available. Charged Dash also follows your cursor so just point in the direction you want to do damage in.

Class and Ascendancy
For this build I picked a witch elementalist. While I hated on elementalist when it got reworked in 3.something (my blame was that it was too generic and forced certain skills (aoe skills and heralds), it is in fact good for all aspects of this build. Pick order:
1) Shaper of Desolation: makes levelling with about each skill legit and in late game it helps with spreading ignite for dps mostly (chill and shock is less important from this node for this build).
2) Pendulum of Destruction: This greatly adds to your clear speed; it’s an important damage source and makes further aoe nodes on the tree redundant (for this build and in my opinion).
3) Mastermind of Discord: you need this for maps and get it third when you actually get to maps which is perfect. It gives 25% fire penetration and reduced reservation on Herald of Ash so the build can run 3 buffs/aura’s.
4) Beacon of Ruin: perfect for endgame; ignite spreads everywhere and does 75% of white mob health in up to t10 maps. It also makes it so the build has to do some lightning damage with shock chance and bosses take 20% increased damage.

An alternative would be scion ascendant with juggernaut and elementalist nodes; that way you have more defence and even more options for gear, but you will have less damage, less aoe, less utility/fast clear. Would not recommend, but possible.

Skill setup
This part is the most important of the build (duh) and I will explain my experiences with it so far as well. This part about the setup is the most important part of the build so it needs a bit of text unless you guys are way smarter than I am and already guessed everything.

The main damage source (5/6 link needed; 4 link doesn’t work good enough):
Charged Dash -> Faster Attacks -> Cast While Channelling -> Detonate Dead -> Combustion (-> Immolate).
Charged dash, cwc, dd makes sense by now but make sure that you don’t put a vaal version in here or it takes twice as long to collect souls. Combustion is awesome cause it scales with both parts and decreases fire resists in mobs and makes certain you apply ignite. I picked faster attacks and immolate because I like the synergy they have with the active skills. You could swap faster attacks for elemental damage with attacks which gives higher base hits so you could kill faster to start proccing detonate dead faster, but you build up stages of charged dash slower which I don’t like. Immolate you could swap for concentrated effect giving you more damage single target but sometimes mobs at the sides of packs don’t get hit, plus the damage is fine for all but hard red maps.

The secondary damage source 4/5 link (or 6 if you really want to since you have 2hander and chest piece):
Vaal Detonate Dead -> Elemental Focus -> Controlled Destruction -> Fire Penetration (-> Concentrated Effect (when socketed in gloves or helmet) -> Immolate).
This setup is your way of taking down bosses; it rapidly and autonomously casts as long as it has corpses and so you should stack as much big damage multipliers with it as possible. I run a 5link set up in my gloves since I wasn’t successful in 6linking my Oro’s yet and it works just find. For socketing in Oro’s you need 4blue which can be annoying.

Skills in my boots:
Herald of Ash, Anger, Desecrate -> Spell Cascade.
There are a few things concerning this set up. Herald of Ash you want for the 25% fire penetration that Mastermind of Discord offers. I like to run Anger cause it buffs both charged dash and detonate dead, but you could swap it for something like grace or haste or some purity if you like to play more defensive or zoomy zoom focussed. Desecrate with spell cascade you need so you can use Vaal DD on bosses. What you do is you use desecrate, cast Vaal DD, cast desecrate again (you can get max. 15 corpses and Vaal DD can use 22 plus your charged dash needs corpses too) and cast Charged Dash. By this time the boss should be dead or soon will.

From here on it becomes preference, but these are my picks:

Skills in my helmet:
Cast When Damage Taken -> Frost Wall -> Increased Duration & Phase Run.
My CWDT is lvl13 and my Frost Wall lvl17 so it triggers when I get hit for about a third of my hp. The frost wall makes it so mobs/projectiles can’t get to me and I can safely channel charged dash from behind my wall. When I finish channelling I let go and usually end up at the other side of the wall, so it doesn’t cause hindrance for me. Increased duration support scales the wall and Phase run as well. Phase run is maxed and doesn’t trigger; Oro’s gives me frenzy charges on igniting targets so I always have those after a fight and thus phase run gives me about 10 seconds of 50% movement speed.

Skills in my gloves:
Here I have my Vaal DD setup as a 5link in Wyrmsign unique gloves, so I’ll just tell you what I run in my Oro’s instead.
Cast When Damage Taken -> Arc -> Curse On Hit -> Warlords Mark.
Arctic Armour, Portal (if you don’t have 6link).
This setup is to curse mobs so I can leech from them with both Charged Dash and Detonate Dead, plus to get a bigger chance to apply shock to tougher foes (6 out of 14 seconds guaranteed application for a max uptime of 10 seconds due to Shaper of Desolation, plus 10% (or 20%) from arc gem). Arctic armour is to counter the downsides from Oro’s and evasion/dodged based builds (fire and physical damage).

Gems you want levels and quality on:
All your main and secondary damage skills and support gems, desecrate, herald of ash, arctic armour, phase run, frost wall, increased duration, warlords mark, curse on hit.
The ones without a line under them are nice to have but less important and can be acquired at ease or not at all.

Gems you don’t want level/quality on:
Spell Cascade; keep it at lvl1 with no quality: levels and quality give it more area of effect and you don’t want that so the corpses stay close together and Vaal DD hits in a smaller area (more hits guaranteed on the boss). Cast When Damage Taken: keep the one that procs arc with warlords mark on hit at lvl1 so it procs a lot. Make the one that procs frost wall a bit higher level so you don’t lock yourself in for every stygian ape that hits you.

Gems in which it doesn’t matter:
Cast When Damage Taken: quality doesn’t add anything for this build.
Anger: you don’t have friends to buff and if you do and play with them they mess up your build interaction probably (I don’t know, I haven’t tried because I have no friends).

Gear and Flasks
This build is quite flexible when it comes to gear and only the main hand weapon is mandatory. Here is why:

Oro’s Sacrifice. Builds that use cast while channelling or any other conditional trigger gem tend to suffer from a direct damage penalty of 2 gem sockets at least. In this case charged dash suffers from not getting any damage increases from CWC and DD. This makes it harder to proc the effect; DD, for which kills/corpses need to be present to work. This makes these kind of builds as far as I can see less effective at super end game content. Still fun however. Anyway; you get less sockets to buff charged dash base damage so you need to work around that with added flat damage from gear, jewels, anger aura, etc. but what also helps is high base damage, of which Oro’s Sacrifice is a great example. The cull effect on it is also nice so DD can trigger faster. The other reason to use Oro’s is because it grants you frenzy charges which scale the damage of both charged dash and DD.

Body armour
A lot of choice here (more than I will mention): queen of the forest, carcass jack, kaoms or belly if you run grace and don’t need evasion, or even a rare chest with high health and resists. If you get (double) corrupts on it that grant levels to detonate dead, that’s also very good in which case a tabula is cheapest. I use a Snowblind Grace chest because it gives me evasion I don’t have a lot of on the tree and most importantly buff effect of arctic armour and 10% spell dodge which I stack.

Amulet and rings
Important slots for flat life, resists, accuracy and maybe some damage mods; up to you. I use rare rings and a Hinekora’s Sight (so I don’t need much accuracy elsewhere and get more dodge). You could also use a Xoph’s amulet I think; it’s probably very good.

Helmet and gloves
Use whatever rare items with high flat life and resists. The helmet or glove slot can be used with an elder item with concentrated effect mod or a Wyrmsign (which I use) for an easy/cheap 5link for Vaal DD.

Here I currently use a rare item with life and resists, but once I get my resists on other gear pieces I will switch to Atziri’s Step for more evasion and to max out spell dodge.

You could use anything as long as it gives life and resists, unless you don’t even need those since you got them elsewhere on the build. Be creative I’d say. I use a Dyadian Dawn so mobs die faster to charged dash’s ignite so I can use DD faster.

A quicksilver flask with % movement speed mod on it, otherwise your charged dash feels too slow.
Good options:
• basalt flask with reduced charged used and staunching
• wise oak flask for more damage (make sure fire resistance is highest)
• quartz flask of warding
• life flask with shock, burn, whatever removal. I only use this in lab.
• stibnite flask of heat

Pantheon powers
Mayor options:
Will depend a bit on you gear/defences I think. I use Lunaris mostly (with 2 upgrades, since the third upgrade never applies) or Solaris (fully upgraded).

Minor options:
Garukhan is ok if you stack evasion, Tukohama is nice since you stand still for Charged Dash and you don’t have a lot of physical mitigation, Ryslatha if you find yourself in need of healing, Ralakesh to counter blind and maim (maim is mostly annoying).

Passive Tree
Short copy paste:

Long copy paste:

Last bumped on Jul 8, 2018, 10:58:39 AM

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