[3.3] Brimstone Immortal - Kongming's Firetrap Sab (very safe, budget-friendly, all content down)

I'm back with another all-content-clearing budget build, this time an extremely safe fire-based saboteur.

Despite only having less than 5k life and 800 ES, this build is incredibly safe, even if you're quite reckless with it. It's built around many layers of defense, but still retains enough offense to take out endgame bosses like uber atziri and uber elder fairly quickly. I made it deathless to level 91 running corrupted red maps (mostly t14+) without any regard for their affixes whatsoever, all the while essentially running directly into the middle of enemy packs in a seemingly reckless fashion. It took uber elder to finally kill me... unfortunately my layers of defense don't do much against shaper beams to the face while elder's got me slowed.

This time, the centerpiece of the build is

That's right, a vendor-food shield. Saboteur's proficiency with blind makes this shield outstanding for defense, as its 30% reduced spell damage taken stacks additively with other reduced taken taken mechs like fortify or Born in the Shadows. Those three mechs alone give the character a whopping 60% reduced spell damage taken from blinded enemies, which makes ultra-threatening spells like elder's ice spears, shaper's frostbolts, or even uber atziri's regular flameblast or stormcall quite survivable (don't try to tank her double flameblast though, that still doesn't end well).

Combined with an array of other defensive layers like dodge, evasion/blind, temp chains blasphemy, and life/es regen and recovery from triggered traps, this build can survive a whole lot of situations without much worry... I'll admit there were close calls for me along the way, but tbh if you wanna be safer still there's a lot of nearby life nodes i haven't grabbed and you could also be a little less reckless than I am in the process... you don't have to run into the middle or packs or stand toe-to-toe with bosses facetanking them, i just choose to cuz... well, cuz it's fun.

The Basics

This particular build I chose to go with Fire Trap as my main source of offense, both for clearing and for bossing. Additionally, I've got a Flamethrower Trap as well which provides heavy supporting damage for tougher packs or bosses, while also augmenting my Fire Trap's damage by virtue of providing Combustion's -19% fire res debuff.

(Really, you could do any trap or pair of traps with this kinda build; there's not a lot aligned to fire specifically, just a few passive nodes, an affix on my sceptre, and kongming's little bit of fire damage to blinded enemies. The specs of this build are mostly about the defensive combos, less so the choice of offense.)

I chose to go with non-crit, largely because it afforded me more passives to spend on things like life and AoE, and also because it keeps the setup nice and cheap... everything I use is either a relatively available unique or a self-found/self-crafted rare that didn't take much investment to make. The budget would still be a few ex (largely for the 6L chest and a bit for the psuedo-6l helm), but for clearing endgame content it's pretty damned affordable.

The general playstyle is pretty straightforward: use firetraps for clearing, toss down a flamethrower or two for tougher targets before throwing down more firetraps. Use Orb of Storms to maintain both Elemental Overload and to proc Arcane Surge for a brief burst of extra power... with my setup it takes ~.25 seconds to cast OOS and the combined benefit of EO and Surge gives me around 75% more dps, it's worth the slight extra maintenance when you need the damage. Additionally, in order to maintain all the reduced damage stacking, I use Vigilant Strike, ideally with its threshold jewel, The Vigil. It too only takes a brief time to use, and with Ancestral Call doesn't even require namelocking onto a target (just be somewhat close to some enemy). Accuracy's not important cuz it can't be evaded. Without The Vigil it'll last for around 12 seconds at 20/20, but The Vigil will triple that, making it extremely low maintenance... it's up to you if you want to give up a jewel socket for that convenience, I personally do cuz it's worth losing a couple percent damage in my book.

Like I said before, I run into the middle of enemy packs and right up to most bosses with this build, on purpose. Born in the Shadows makes you blind all nearby enemies, so keeping enemies close is a nice reliable way to make sure you maintain the couple sources of reduced damage taken that depend on enemies being blinded. And with a 20/20 temp chains blasphemy with lvl 3 enhance, non-boss enemies around me are also slowed by about 50%, so getting in the middle of packs keeps all of them slowed as well. The combination of blind, decent evasion, good dodge chance, temp chains' slow, and sustain from tinkerskin/pyromaniac all adds up to enough to handle putting yourself in a seemingly-risky spot, and in most cases i don't feel the slightest bit threatened in doing so.

One more thing to note is that I don't recommend using +1 trap gloves over Slavedriver's Hand, for good reasons. For starters, +1 trap kinda mucks up using flamethower, as you'll eat up two charges to throw two out at once, one of them being in a less-than-ideal position. Kinda wasteful. But also, with the kinda cast speed I've got, Slavedriver's Hand provides me enough trap throwing speed to make up for not getting 25% more fire trap dps from +1 trap, PLUS it allows me to avoid using Eldritch Battery (saving me 4 passives and keeping my ES over my life for an extra layer of defense, way more worth it than having a good life roll) AND allowing me to use Arcane Surge for another ~25% more firetrap dps (you can't proc Arcane Surge by spending life or ES for spells). Plus, the charge generation and AoE isn't bad to have.

Passive Tree (level 91)

Bandits, Pantheon, Ascendancy


I killed all the bandits for +2 passive points.

Helping Kraityn wouldn't be bad either though, 6% cast speed translates into trap throwing speed with this setup and 6% movespeed is kinda nice QoL, though unnecessary. 3% dodge doesn't hurt either, though it's not a big deal.

For Pantheon, I went Brine King + Garukhan. The stunlock immunity is big (and the reduced chill effect and stun recovery is nice too), and the potential flat evade as well as the movespeed is pretty nice. I'd definitely go Brine King all the time, but the lesser is more a matter of opinion

As for the ascendancy, obviously this is saboteur, but the order you take points is honestly up to you. I saved Pyromaniac for last, personally, but I could see saving Chain Reaction for last as well.

My Gear + Gems

The gem setups are all as they're currently socketed. It was this gear that I used to kill Uber Elder (yes, even with level 19 0% quality gems for the most part) at level 91. All the rares are self-found or self-crafted, while the uniques are all pretty affordable. Nothing too fancy or expensive, you could certainly do better if you were to buy rares.

The gem setups are pretty simple, for the most part:

Fire Trap just gets clustertrap and a bunch of damage supports. Immolate is technically higher hit dps than several of the supports I chose, but since it depends on enemies being burning, it makes clearing a bit rougher... i prefer not to have to throw two sets of traps for my clearing damage to set in.

Flamethrower trap gets a few damage support, including combustion, which will allow it to shred some fire res on enemies, making fire trap more effective as well. Even with conc effect, it still has pretty good aoe, although for the most part you wanna keep your main target towards the center if you can... they'll spend more time being hit and less time in the dead zones between firestreams that way.

Orb of storms with inc crit strikes and arcane surge gets you a nice duo of dps boosting buffs, proccing Elemental Overload when it crits and proccing Arcane Surge when you activate it. I don't have a ton of mana unreserved on this build, but it's still enough to use this (although no regen maps muck it up). I got lucky and hit faster casting on my sceptre as well, so my OOS gets a nice hike to its initial cast time and its proc rate as a result... it's not necessary, but it sure is pleasant.

Vigilant Strike with faster attacks and ancestral call makes for a nice fast swing that you don't even need to namelock for... i just set mine to 'always attack in place' and hit the key when there's enemies close by... no need to aim, ancestral call will hit one automatically and get you that sweet fortify buff.

Cwdt-IC-duration is pretty standard, and vaal grace linked to it gets my vaal grace activation some extra time

Blasphemy-temp chains-enhance creates a nice slow aura to go with your blind aura, with enhance upping the base slow further. Flamedash also gets a mild benefit from extra quality with enhance, so that's a nice spot for it to be as well.

And finally, on the weapon swap I've got a Brightbeak with leapslam and shield charge + faster attacks, as well as a portal gem. I mostly swap to it when i need to travel around outside of combat, when i wanna move between packs in combat i tend to stick with my quartz+quicksilver flasks to keep my main weapon set active.
Last edited by Shppy on Jul 21, 2018, 9:55:28 PM
Last bumped on Jul 22, 2018, 6:06:39 AM
Looks interesting. Perhaps I give it a shot :) Some video showcase would be nice
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I like the look of the KongMing's, and I've been using it as a weapon swap when I couldn't dodge a large bundle of spells, so it's acting like a flask or sth. :)

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