[3.4] Siege Ballista Chieftain --- Deathless Uber Elder w/ Video

Uber Elder: www.youtube.com/watch?v=QsNIAZbKNGI

Friends don't let friends play siege ballista builds. But every once in a while, someone gets that itch, and there is no other way to scratch it. If you need to play a siege ballista build this is the way to do it. If you don't feel weirdly compelled then I recommend you stay away.

- Good life sustain for a totem build
- Can do any map mods (ele reflect, no leech, and no regen are a bit of a pain though)
- Can clear T15 maps on a pretty cheap budget (but it's not pretty), also 1 ex 6Ls because nobody plays this crap
- Decent at bosses with high investment
- Siege Ballistas have the largest target/agro range of any totem and get lots of free pierce

- Siege Ballistas have a long setup time before they fire, making all such builds slow and not great at delves
- Not very good in general, especially relative to meta builds
- Requires large investment for both good damage and survivability
- Some people find totem builds not fun to play

Path of Building and Passive Tree

Path of Building at time of Uber Elder (lvl 95, ~40 ex gear): https://pastebin.com/HTRqhKPv
Passive Tree (lvl 95): www.poeurl.com/b7xc


It is faster to level without siege ballista. Ideally one would switch at level 100 with all content completed. The earliest you can reasonably switch is after you get the Iron Commander bow (req lvl 32) and have at least 200 or better yet 400 dex. Molten Strike is good for leveling Marauders. Tornado Shot is also an option once you get some projectile damage nodes. To get the true siege ballista experience, switch asap so you can start piling up that self-loathing.

Gear Discussion

It can be fun to stack tons and tons of dex and get loads of totems. Unfortunately it's also bad. You should try to stick to 600 dex for 4 totems. This lets us use more overpowered abyss jewels. Bumping this up to 800 is also an option, but it's probably a bad option except maybe on a low budget.

This is the bow you will be using:

This bow is needed for this build. You can usually get a 6L for 1 or 2 ex.


Gloves are the only slot on this build where there is an unequivocal best in slot (besides bow). If you can't afford two socket Tombfists, one socket with a murd jewel works. You don't need any corruption.

Body Armor

Wildwrap should be pictured above as it is best for most people but I already sold the one I was using. Right now you can buy a 6L Briskwrap for 60c and convert it to Wildwrap for a few chaos. A rare with %dex and other good mods is BiS but a lot more expensive. Some other options are Belly of the Beast for some survivability or Kaom's if you want to cut out the charge generation and CoH setup. However it's usually more efficient to get more survivability on the tree and just go for Wildwrap unless you want to spend at least 8+ ex on a rare.


Starkonja's(not pictured) is probably the best safe option for most builds. Crafting a good helm with a hollow socket is BiS but also expensive. Hale Negator with good abyss jewels has lots of damage, hp, and a useful ability, but can leave you at a dex/resist defecit in other slots. Just using any old resist/hp helm is a good option if you can't make the resists up on other pieces. A siege ballista enchant is nice but not needed (dmg>atk speed>placement).


You will probably need resist boots if you didn't get a resist helm. The added damage when you haven't killed or damage pen enchants both make a big difference, but so do more abyss sockets, and it's tough to get both. Kaom's roots are mostly just for Uber Elder. The budget option is just any old rares with HP and resists.


Hyrri's Demise will be best for the vast majority of people and is only ~10c. A flat damage or damage per target pierced corruption is usually pretty cheap and adds some extra damage. You can switch to a good rare quiver if you've got some spare currency, already have plenty of flat damage, and aren't using Astramentis and Cyclopean Coil.


Astramentis really should be pictured here but I recently sold my old one. Most people will want to use Astramentis for its dex and synergy with Cyclopean Coil and Hyrri's Bite. The other main option is an amulet with lots of dex, some damage, and some HP. It needs to be pretty good in all categories to replace Astramentis. If you've got dex on everything else then a more damage oriented amulet can work; there are a lot of good damage mods.


Cyclopean Coil again really should be pictured here as that is what the vast majority of people should use. Once your total gear budget/value starts creeping up into the ~15-30(?) ex range it might be worth looking at replacing it with a decent stygian belt. Cyclopean and Astramentis complement each other, so it is probably only worth replacing one if you can replace both.


Most beginner/budget versions will need lots of resists on rings, and you probably can't afford anything else with them besides hopefully some hp. Rings are also a good spot to get some dex. More high budget versions can also add some damage here. This build doesn't typically get a ton of regular damage modifiers so an extra ~40% on a ring can help a fair amount.

Here is my current flask setup:

The important thing is that you have bleed, freeze, and (less vital) curse covered. Diamond flasks are by far the biggest DPS boost for most setups. When I did Uber elder I used 2 of these for more up time. Taste of Hate is also a decent option, as are a stibnite/jade combo for some real evade chance.

Abyss Jewels are very important to this build. Here is a weighted search I did for my character, where the weighted value directly corresponds to the damage in path of building: http://poe.trade/search/oyahikitokisiz . If you want more budget jewels just lower the weight and life requirements in the linked search. The most important mod is fire damage and life, but other damage and crit mult are also useful, as are some tertiary stats like resists (not included in weighted search).

Fluid Motion is a good dex booster especially for lower budget versions. The most efficient spot is the Duelist jewel slot, and the next best is near the Scion life cluster coming from Duelist/Marauder areas. However for higher budget versions it is most efficient to get your dex on gear and cut out this jewel.

Rain of Splinters is nice for a clear speed boost. You can swap it for an abyss jewel if you want to tryhard on some bosses.

A single mod anger crit mult watcher's eye provides a decent damage boost for a reasonable price. For some extra survivability on Uber Elder I got one that also had Purity of Ice phys to cold conversion.

Gem Setup

I plan to flesh out this section more later, but for now you can see the gems that I have on my current gear. Note that I have a lvl 23 purity of ice mostly just for Uber Elder. Before that I was using Clarity for mana QoL and Minion and Totem Elemental Resists support instead of crit damage for better totem survivability in maps. Also there is a choice between Combustion in the bow setup for fire resist debuffing or chain for cursing whole packs and better clear.

A Note About Mana

The mana situations is kinda awkward. My current setup has 2 mana nodes near duelist to improve regen plus a mana leech node (that only works with the curse on hit setup). This works out alright as you need to be attacking frequently to keep your charges up and apply curses anyways, but it's not ideal. When mapping I was using a medium level clarity without the mana leech node. Some mana regen on gear might be worth it but those suffix slots are prized.

I feel like there is more I could say, but I've already wasted enough words on a build that I don't really recommend anyone plays who doesn't need to. I'll do my best to answer any questions. Enjoy!
Last edited by A_Riot_Coming on Oct 20, 2018, 10:37:02 AM
Last bumped on Dec 8, 2018, 3:08:28 AM
It is appropriate that nobody has commented on this yet.
It makes me sad that it now takes so much investment to get to even what you said are, meh results. I used to love this skill.
If you'll allow me to break character for a bit, they aren't really that meh results. The tone of the OP is partly because there are all these actually meh build guides on this site with their creators making all these outlandish claims about them. I thought it would be funny to go in the opposite direction.

The last two builds I played were both pretty meta and I never beat Uber Elder deathless with either. I had a lvl 100 elemental hit in Incursion and lvl 99 barrage wander in Delve, both with over 100ex in gear. They were probably capable of it but my mechanics on the fight aren't great.

I of course wouldn't recommend this Siege Ballista build to any of the people who are just looking for the strongest build to dominate content, but it's not that bad.
If anyone is curious, the version in the video lists at 1.8M shaper dps with 7.6k hp and 2k hp/s regen.
IGN - Crittrain
Last edited by hackface498 on Oct 28, 2018, 6:18:31 PM
how well would this build work for 3.5?
Partheion wrote:
how well would this build work for 3.5?

The new Multiple Totems Support is a nice buff. Putting down lots of totems quickly was a limiter for this build and that just got a lot easier. I don't believe there were any other significant buffs or nerfs. It seems like it should be good for the new league content. There might be some new veiled or crafting mods that help but I'm not familiar with them yet.
(removed duplicate post)
Last edited by A_Riot_Coming on Dec 8, 2018, 3:09:01 AM

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