[3.5] Betrayal - RF AoF Bladevortex - over 1 million shaper dps

Hello Everyone.

Shaper Kill Video

Path of Building link: https://pastebin.com/1jTp71Pd


+ Very high single target dps
+ Overall high Defense:
+7.1k life
+85% fire resist
+net +34% chaos resist
+ Relatively cheap gear and league starter. All cheap except the 6L chest.


- Problems with some map mods but most of them can be handled except elemental reflect.
- Map clear speed could have been better.

Blade Vortex

I am very well aware that blade vortex has been popular long time probably since it came up and there have been already Avatar of Fire with or without Righteous versions. There is also an elementalist version that I've seen and it has better map clear speed than this build. I reference the links below to those builds:

Mirkulas BV Chieftain 3.4
3.5 Righteous Fire/BV! No Uniques Needed
3.5 Triple Herald Blade Vortex Elementalist

Even though my version is similar to the first two guides, there are some important differences and that's why I'm writing this build guide. I'll include some details even though BV has been discussed so much already. This build is built upon my previous 3.5 RF AoF Bladefall build which has similar unique items and dps mechanics.

Unique Items
One important distinction of this build from the above chieftain builds is the effective use of many unique items. One of them doesn't even utilize any unique item. Only the amulet is a bit expensive and the rest is cheap.

These two unique items are a strong combo in this build. The repentance is a strong dps kicker. It yields about 16% more dps and basically turns our 6-link BV into a 7-link with the Iron Will Support gem. The amulet provides the necessary int for the gloves, necessary dexterity for BV and also a strength bonus boosting life and spell damage thanks to iron will. This strength bonus works well with the chieftain ascendancy.

Another strong choice as increased area of effect is highly required for map clear speed. More life, damage and elemental resists makes this cheap unique item even stronger. Also, it is easy to chrom 2R1G3B on Carcass.

Yet another great unique item that I discovered from a drop. I used rare rings with more life and chaos resists and this ring gives those bonuses. The onslaught effect from this ring is great and it saves a silver flask.

This shield or Saffel's Frame is necessary to sustain RF.
Passive Tree
Level 93 Tree

Bandits: Side with Oak as it grants both life regeneration and also increases bv damage.

What makes this build different from the other chieftain builds is the combination of both RF & increased skill duration passives from the tree. Increased skill duration is critical for a pure blade vortex build. It is necessary both in maps and also against bosses. Increased skill duration provides other bonuses as well: boost to vaal righteous fire, arcane surge and immortal call.
My Current Gear

Recomended Flasks

A mana flask is necessary as we aggressively use 3 auras.

The Dying Sun is a good choice but it can be skipped as it is expensive and without any dps bonus. Unfortunately, its bonus to AoE has a small effect to BV (since we already have other aoe bonuses from the passive tree, carcass and support gem). Nevertheless, Dying Sun works well because it reduces our burn damage from RF and we get a bit increased life regeneration.

Wise Oak is the best damage boosting flask. Use it against bosses.
Skill Gems
6-link: Bladevortex + Added Fire Dmg. + Contr. Dest. + Ele. Focus + Conc. effect/Inc. Area + Fire Pen./Inc. Duration

Use spell conc. effect & fire pen. against bosses and inc. area & inc. duration in maps.

4-link: Armageddon Brand + Combustion + Arcane Surge (lvl 5) + Mana Leech

A very versatile setup. The combustion reduces the fire resistance (we use ele. focus instead of combustion in our 6-link). Arcane surge boost damage and cast speed. It is left at level 5 so that a single cast triggers AS.

Also, we get some mana leech. I've mostly relied upon Warlord's Mark to sustain mana in my previous spell caster builds but this curse is somewhat wasted with a mana flask as we already have life leech and endurance charge gain fro the ascendancy passives. This setup provides extra hits against bosses. Thereby, elemental overload and covered in ash effects become easier to sustain.

4-link: cast when dmg. taken (3) + imm. call (5) + enfeeble (7) + inc. duration

A standard setup. The build does not rely on a specific curse and even a low level enfeeble is overall useful. Even though chieftain benefits from endurance charges, it is still better to consume them with immortal call because we've increased skill duration passives. We still manage to get 3 endurance charges in maps with armageddon or herald of ash burning kills.

4-link: Enlighten (3) + Purity of Fire + Herald of Ash + Herald of Purity

We have some reduced mana cost passives from the tree and aggressively run three auras. A mana flask is necessary.

3-link: shield charge + fortify + faster att.

A standard setup. Note that the shield charge needs to hit to activate the fortify buff but the hit chance is 78%.

3-link: Vaal RF + Burning Damage + Conc. Eff.

Since BV is a short range skill, it is useful to support RF. However, setting RF into this 3-link increases our shaper dps by only 3%. Kicking VRF in yields 58% more shaper dps (about 1.77 million).

It is probably better to use Vaal Haste instead: VRF + Vaal Haste + Inc. Dur. Each of these setups has advantages though.
Map Clear Speed
I'm not going to be dishonest here as I had higher expectations. I was expecting faster clear speed than my other bladefall build but they both seem about the same although BV has much higher single target dps than BF.

The elementalist version that I referenced above has a higher clear speed although BV seems to be nerfed after that guide. Also, this build has higher effective life than that version.

The map layouts make a difference though. The build runs small corridors (like tower map or delve) faster than large open areas (like summit map). BV has a small AoE. Other spells like shock/ice nova or (just) vortex has larger AoE.

Cheers & Enjoy!
Last edited by Varvarel on Feb 20, 2019, 10:09:32 PM
Last bumped on Feb 20, 2019, 9:06:59 PM
Found this crazy CI AoF BV Chieftain build after I wrote the above guide. 17k-19k ES with dual wield for explosions!!! Its gear should be much more expensive though than my gear:

Last edited by Varvarel on Feb 21, 2019, 12:20:34 PM

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