[3.4] Static Discharger / Tower of Thunder

Hi,

for this season I wanted to build a character which can easily delve through the hordes of enemies the new Azurite Mines provide. And I wanted to share it and to ask for improvements.

First off: This build focuses on AoE sustained burst damage, provided by 15 charges unleashed with Discharge in a 0.3 second interval.

This build is only possible thanks to the reworked Static Strike.

Summary:

Pros:
+ Great Area of Effect
+ High Sustain
+ Good amount of Tankiness
+ Versatile in Ascendancy and Gimmicks
+ Constant Income of Power, Endurance AND Frenzy Charges
+ Budget and High-End versions

Cons:
- Mediocre single-target damage
- Susceptible to reflected damage
- Anti-crit build

The Bread and Butter


At the core of this build lies two distinct items which, combined with other uniques, unleash a lot of potential damage.

Mjölner and the fresh and new 3.4 Static Strike



Mjölner

Mjölner is a relatively affordable weapon with a unique feature. On each hit, the socketed Lightning Spells are triggered and cast. This can only happen once every 0.25 seconds per spell.
It is important to note that any hit with the weapon will trigger this effect.

Static Strike

The new Static Strike will place a buff on the player after attacking which allows additional strikes to happen at certain intervals.

As you already guessed correctly, these strikes can and will trigger Mjölner.

And while it states that it Static Strikes will repeat every 0.4 seconds, it actually is faster thanks to the in-build buff which increases the strike frequency by 10% per stacks. The following are the buffed values:
0 Stacks - 0,4000 (not possible)
1 Stack - 0,3636
2 Stacks - 0,3333
3 Stacks - 0,3077

As you may notice, the 3-stack value is fairly close to the 0,25 second cooldown of Mjölner. And thus trigger it as frequent as possible.

One last quick note: Static Strike has the Chaining tag, which means that Mjölner provide +1 Chain to it.


The Charges

You can't really play Discharge without charges, can you? And thus, we use a variety of different unique combos to achieve a steady income of charges.

Power Charges


The Power Charges are by far the most important of this build as they translate themselves into Lightning Damage, which in turn is buffed by Mjölner.

The combo for this is Romira's Banquet + the Keystone Resolute Technique.

Resolute Technique

Your hits can't be Evaded
Never deal Critical Strikes


Since we can not critically strike the Ring can only generate Power Charges and never let us lose some. Sadly most other stats on this ring are fairly useless. Except x% of Physical Attack Damage Leeched as Mana. This let us run Maps with the Stasis affix, which would otherwise negate our Manaregeneration.

Another important factor in Resolute Technique is that our hits can not be evaded. Which is utterly important as Mjölner can only generate casts from hits with the weapon. Which means we would otherwise have to invest massively into Accuracy as Templar tend to run low of it.

One last note to Romira's Banquet: The Power Charge is generated from any hit; not just the weapon. Meaning that high-hit-frequency-spells like Ball Lightning, Fire Storm, Orb of Storm or Blade Vortex can also generate massive amounts of Power Charges in the short delay between Discharges.

Endurance Charges


There are two major ways to generate Endurance Charge constantly: Voll's Devotion or Hierophant's Conviction of Power.


Conviction of Power

25% change to gain an Endurance Charge when you gain a Power Charge
50% chance to gain a Power Charge when you place a Totem
15% chance to gain a Power Charge if you or your Totems kill an Enemy
5% reduced Elemental Damage taken while you have an Endurance Charge
Damage Penetrates 5% Elemental Resistances while you have a Power Charge


The major difference between those two is affordability. Voll's Devotion is generally speaking a little more expensive. However you can cheaply by the corresponding Divination Cards for a much cheaper price and even get better rolls that any of the traded Amulets.

Additionally the major disadvantage of Conviction of Power is the fact that it only has a 25% chance on Power Charge gain to actually gain an Endurance Charge, thus rendering is far less consistent than Voll's Devotion.

Please note that you should already be running the Romira's Banquet-Combo to properly generate Endurance Charges.

Frenzy Charges

Unlike Endurance Charges this is a seperate Combo and doesn't require other things outside the combo itself.

The Red Trail + The Golden Rule + Chance to Bleed Support


The Golden Rule

Viridian Jewel
40% increased Armour while Bleeding
Bleeding you inflict is Reflected to you
+1% to Chaos Resistance per Poison on you
Poison you inflict is Reflected to you


The Red Trail generate Frenzy Charges on each hit, regardless of type (Attack, Cast, Spell) while the player bleeds. The The Golden Rule would reflect Bleed effects back to you when you do. This is where Chance to Bleed Support comes in. While it only has 25% chance to Bleed it is plenty enough as Static Strike hits multiple times per second and per target.

Sadly, this leave you with a nasty Bleeding debuff. Thus it is recommended to compensate it with the minor Pantheon node Soul of Ralakesh.

Soul of Ralakesh

25% reduced Physical Damage over Time Damage taken while moving
25% chance to avoid Bleeding
Capture Drek, Apex Hunter
Cannot be Blinded
You cannot be Maimed


Surely, when you want to run Atziri or other enemy with build in Reflect you should go with Soul of Yugul.



Setup:

Discharge on Budget

A major advantage of this build is that you can build it up steadily, increasing its power step by step. And before you decide to buy the expensive items you can easily play around with it and some cheap items and certain Ascendancy nodes.

Guardian Ascendancy class

In 3.2 the Guardian already received minor updates, especially Harmony of Purpose.
Harmony of Purpose

Nearby Enemies cannot gain Power, Frenzy or Endurance Charges
You and Nearby Party Members Share Power, Frenzy and Endurance Charges with each other
10% chance to gain a Power, Frenzy or Endurance Charge on Hit


While it is as inconsistent income of Charges, it provide a good basis to work with. If you do not run the Endurance or Frenzy Combo it certainly is a good addition to the Romira's Banquet combo.

Victario's Charity


This unique shield provide a chance for Frenzy Charges on any hit.


Gimmicks / Gem Setups

Basics
Static Strike / 6-Link

Static Strike + Ancestral Call Support + Chance to Bleed Support (Only with Frenzy Combo) + Increased Area of Effect Support + Fortify Support + (Wildcard)Culling Strike Support



Ancestral Call Support

While, on the first sight, Ancestral Call looks useless it actually is pretty important as it provide unique features to this build.

First off, when you and the supporting ghosts hit a target you also gain a stack of Static Charge, meaning you can acquire the maximum of 3 stacks with one single action.

Additionally, while you are exploding with Discharge, it is extremely hard to hit an enemy that is not dying before the animation ends. Ancestral Call will still provide the Buff, even if the target dies beforehand.

Lastly and as mentioned earlier, it is hard to actually hit something that isn't dying instantly. Ancestral Call also effectively increases your Melee Attack Range, allowing you to hit enemies from farther away.

Wildcard

The sixth gem is actually just a preference as the problematic bosses have 10% less Health with Culling Strike.

If you have other means of Culling Strike, like an Ally with it, consider the following gems: Blind Support, Maim Support, Life gain on Hit Support, Elemental Proliferation Support, Combustion Support


Mjölner / Discharge


Discharge + Controlled Destruction Support + Elemental Focus Support



While leveling, or without the Endurance or Frenzy Combo, you can also use Arc instead of Elemental Focus. The major problem with it is that Mjölner will then cast Arc and Discharge in sequence which hinders its single-target damage.


Aside the Basic Combo, which only require a small setup, there are many things we can use to our advantage in terms of damage and survivability.

Golem / Big CWDT

Cast when Damage Taken Support (high level) + Flame Golem + Orb of Storms + Molten Shell



It doesn't really matter which Golem you actually take, if any. I personally find the Flame Golem best for its damage buff. But you can easily switch to each other non-Dexterity Golem if you wish.

Orb of Storms received a major change in 3.4 that it can also be cast by Totems, Traps, Mines and Trigger effects. Sadly this is currently in hiatus due to a hotfix.


Vaal Skill / small CWDT


Cast when Damage Taken Support + Ball Lightning + Slower Projectiles Support + Vaal Spectral Throw



Ball Lightning provides a good amount of hits per cast. Additionally the amount of hits scales exceptionally good with Slower Projectiles Support.

And Vaal Spectral Throw does so, too. It is mainly used against bosses to generate a large amount of hits to create burst phases in unison with your damage flasks.
Additionally Vaal Spectral Throw hits with your weapon. Which means that Discharge will trigger from it. This allows you to actually explode faster than the usual 0,307 seconds and closer to the minimum of 0,25 seconds.


Curse / Mobility / Heralds

Herald of Thunder + Curse on Hit Support + Elemental Weakness + Shield Charge

Herald of Ash + Herald of Purity + Leap Slam



This section is highly customisable. None of Heralds is a must-have, except Herald of Purity as a Guardian. And the Curse isn't totally necessary, it just provides more damage and can be exchange for any other Curse.


Ascendancy Classes

Another advantage of this build is that it doesn't require a certain Ascendancy class. It could even be played as an Elementalist or Trickster. However, due to the synergies with charges, elemental damage and the position on the Sphere Board the Templar should be the best choice.

The Ascendancy class you pick will just determine the focus from "Most Defensive" to "Most Offensive" and "Hybrid in-between".
Now I'll list all major benefits for each class and set them in comparison to each other.

Guardian:
+ 40% Area of Effect (4 Sentinels of Purity)
+ 10% more Damage when Ally is present (even minions)
+ Minions Intimidate on Hit
+ 10% chance to gain any type of Charge on hit
+ multiple Block modifiers
- No additional Penetration

Hierophant:
+ 25% Increased Area of Effect
+ 10% more Spell Damage (Arcane Surge)
+ 40% increased Spell Damage
+ 0,5% Spell Damage Leech
+ Immunity to Elemental Ailments
+ 5% reduced Elemental Damage taken
+ 5% additional Elemental Damage Penetration
+ more Endurance Charge generation on hit
+ increased Damage per Enemy killed recently

Inquisitor:
+ 20% increased Effect of Shock/Chill/Freeze
+ 10% additional Elemental Damage Penetration
+ 8% reduced Elemental Damage taken
+ Enemies receive 16% more Elemental Damage
+ 30% increased Spell Damage
+ 20% increased Attack Speed
+ Elemental Resistance in minor nodes
- No Area of Effect
- No additional Charge generation

Ultimately I've decided to stick with the Hierophant as the potential best class, but that is my preference.



Additional Infos
Herald of Purity and Jewels

A huge advantage of Herald of Purity, aside that it provides Area of Effect as a Guardian, is the fact, that the minions are ideal targets to let the taunt bosses. Not only reduce taunted bosses the damage on you by 10%, but also draw their damage in general.
And thanks to the fact that the Purity Heralds will heal themselves to 100% health as a 20% chance on hit, they are pretty much always full on health.

The only problem is, that the affix Minions have #% chance to Taunt on Hit with Attacks can only be found on Ghastly Eye Jewels which drop from Abysses. But you can easily find cheap version on the market.

Other Uniques

Kingsguard


Easily one of the most underappreciated Uniques when you handle Endurance Charges.
As you consume up to 5 Endurance Charges you also heal yourself by 500 Health per Discharge. And with more than 3 Discharges per second, you are healed by 1500 Health each second. In addition to the 0,5% Spell Drain from the Hierophant your sustain should be plenty enough for most encounter.



Improvements

There are some possible improvements I haven't build in for now which I like to address.

Labyrinth Enchantments/Corruptions

Head: corrupted +1 to maximum Power Charges
Alternative: 40% increased Discharge Damage
Boots: corrupted +1 to maximum Endurance Charges
Alternative: Damage Penetrates 10% of Enemy Elemental Resistances if you haven't Killed Recently
Gloves: Commandment of Fury
Alternative: +1 to maximum Frenzy Charges
Mace: (15–20)% increased Area of Effect


Videos

Depth 147 Whispering Galley (Breach)


Last edited by Zanryu on Sep 5, 2018, 11:59:22 AM
Last bumped on Sep 23, 2018, 12:38:07 PM
Updated with videos, etc
This looks great, I'll definitely keep this post in mind when starting my next build !!
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I think this shield would not give us frenzy charge. It says to allies. Am I right?
(¯`•¸•´¯)
"
Completed 13 Challengesliveavar wrote:
I think this shield would not give us frenzy charge. It says to allies. Am I right?


I just tested it (again) and it does indeed give Frenzy Charges to the player holding the shield.
Last edited by Zanryu on Sep 9, 2018, 7:56:30 AM
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