3.8| Stress Free PoE - SLOW-MO ZOMBIES |Clear the Atlas with YOUR Items at YOUR Pace (SSF & Co-op)

The 3.9 version of this guide is now live! Click here to get there! Thank you so much for such a great and encouraging league! You were all so great to each other and I appreciate the attitude you all brought to the thread. I'm very blessed to have had you all around. Thank you to all who tried the build out, whether you're a poster or not. Thank you.

My Builds Going Forward (PoE 2 & Onwards...)
So ExileCon made some HUGE announcements! I'm really really really excited for them to come to fruition. That being said, character building will be completely different and as a result, existing guides/builds will be changing dramatically.

Now I love theory crafting. I would LOVE to have a build/guide for each of the current 19 ascendancy classes. Ideas are always rolling through my head (as I'm sure they are for you too ;).) With PoE adding an ADDITIONAL 19 ascendancies, I obviously have to pick and choose...38 ASCENDANCIES!!! I restrict myself to a maximum of 6 guides for the amount of personal time it takes to keep them updated and to be active in their threads. So I'll have to continue with the current strategy that I have when picking guides which is, "pick an idea or mechanic of the game that I really like, and build around it." Unfortunately, the number of things I'd like to write a guide on is much greater than 6. So I try to mix and match my preferences within one build while making it efficient, fun to play, that can be played with any rare items, something that doesn't require finicky aiming on PC, and something that can accommodate my long list of medical restrictions.

So with 38 ascendancies, there will obviously be a ton of options. Currently, there's one Necromancer...maybe there will be more. Currently, Occultist is perfect for CI, maybe more will be added. I'd love to keep all of my guides with their current base classes but if one of the new ascendancies matches more what I enjoy, I may end up changing to it. I want all my guides to be the same league in, league out. So IF I make any class changes, it's with the intent of the change being permanent.

So, here's a list of things I really like in PoE and that I'll hopefully be able to incorporate into 6 guides (I currently can't):

- A legion of minions that stay summoned and kill everything for me.
- A max Block character
- A max Dodge Character
- A bow character
- A totem character
- A CI character
- An RF character (if there was ever a Cold RF skill I'd choose that)
- I LOVE Phasing
- I love killing my minions
- A character that buffs allies (I know it's hard without uniques)
- Having a Scion would be cool
- I love lots of charges
- I LOOOOOVE slowing Enemies
- I love Shield skills

So anyway, the point of all this is, I don't know what PoE 2 will bring but I'll be doing my best not to change any ascendancies...but I will if it helps me get everything I love about the game into 6 builds/guides.

Thanks for your time and support. You're all fantastic. :)


With this build, you’ll substantially slow enemies around you (with a heavily invested in Temporal Chains aura) while your Zombies aggressively rush at, and kill everything. Skeletons can be summoned for fun and kamikaze for big bonus damage if you feel like hitting a button. That’s it! Game passed. Atlas cleared. (I know the title makes it seem like the Zombies are the ones going slow even though it's really the enemies and not the zombies...but I like how the title sounds.) Anyway it's easy 1 button fun! The build doesn't require any specific items or mods to play so you can just pick up and play like a good old fashion "dungeon crawler".

Ok! Yikes...you could have at least said "please" or something...

If you're curious about any aspect of the title or why my builds are the way they are, I give the details here. The guides I post will easily clear the Atlas despite the limitations I play with.

*For those with similar limitations to mine, I can play this build on both PC and Console.

(Thanks Tagz for always being willing to figure out the Wiki with me.)

Here's the 3.8 VIDEO EXAMPLE of gameplay and here's what MY GEAR looks like. (My character name doesn't match my build anymore...too many respecs. I play on Standard but I refuse to use Legacy Items/mods. My builds will always be just as the guide states unless I'm trying something out and forgot to switch back to the guide's setup prior to signing off.)

The Guts (Gems/Gear/Tree/Attributes)
Gem Links
PoE restricts which gems are available to each class until Act 3. Until then you can get some gems for free from quest rewards, purchase some from specific NPCs in each town, or find them as loot.

There are two NPC's that sell all purchasable gems: the first one is Siosa in the Library in Act 3 (you have to do his quest first (the Library is connected to The Imperial Gardens)), the second NPC is Lilly Roth in Act 6.

There are a couple of gems that we want (for fun) to be at full quality. So be sure to use your Gemcutter's Prisms on these gems first if you are following this build closely. Then you can improve the quality of any other gems you see fit. I'll have a "20%" beside the gem name to indicate it's a priority to be quality first. For Example: "Temporal Chains (20%)"

*If I have a level next to a gem, stop levelling that gem at that level. For example: "Cast when Damage Taken (Level 1)". Don’t level Cast when Damage Taken past gem level 1.

5/6 Link - Main Skill (Socket in your chest)
-Raise Zombie - Our main skill, a minion skill. They do the damage. Not you.
-Minion Damage Support - Improves minion damage.
-Feeding Frenzy Support - Very important for YOUR survival. Without this, you'll find you'll be standing alone, without the ability to do damage yourself, while your zombies are all alive. This keeps your zombies caught up “all” the time. It also gives your Zombies bonus damage and makes them as aggressive as possible (though they still follow you if you go elsewhere). (You may switch this for Meat Shield Support if you prefer your Zombies to stay close to you and Taunt whoever comes close.)
-Minion Life Support - Gives extra life to your zombies.
-Fortify Support - Grants your zombies the Fortify buff for 5 seconds. This gives them 20% reduced damage from Hits (not damage over time). It also increases their damage.
-(If you get a six link: Elemental Army Support - This improves our Zombie resists but also their Max resists! So they'll be able to get higher than 75% elemental resists :). This will also improve their cold damage from Hatred and apply Cold Exposure (-10% to cold resists) on the enemies they hit.

4 Link - Minion Bombs (Socket in helmet)
-Vaal Summon Skeletons - Your normal Skeletons skill and the vaal one packed in one gem. Don't worry about not getting it right away. Just start leveling it when you get it. It'll level up quickly. (See the Vaal section.) (Use the normal Summon Skeleton skill until you find the Vaal version.) This skill is our bonus damage that focuses on Minion Instability. They will explode when reduced to low life. Our linked supports will focus on the damage of Minion Instability instead of the melee damage of the skeletons themselves.
-Infernal Legion Support - This skill gives our Skeletons extra damage in a few ways but more importantly eats their life away. This guarantees that they'll be exploding via Minion Instability after giving the enemy a few wacks.
-Minion Damage Support - This gives our skeletons increased damage, but more importantly it improves the damage to Minion Instability.
-Minion Life Support - Gives extra life to our skeletons which we only want because it improves the damage of Minion Instability.

4 Link - Defense & Elemental Equilibrium (Socket in gloves or boots)
-Cast When Damage Taken (Level 1) - Automatically casts linked spells. Linked spells can't be self casted. (For this set of links, gem order doesn't matter.) (If you want to add Fortify Support to this build, change this to a Melee Skill of your preference.)
-Ball Lightning (Level 4) - You can use any lightning spell you want. I like this skill because it "pierces" enemies and has a good reach. This skill needs to be a lightning skill so that it doesn't conflict with the Cold Damage of Hatred and the Fire Damage of Minion Instability. (Socket Fortify Support in here if you wanted the melee setup instead.)
-Curse on Hit Support - This is needed to be able to apply Enfeeble with our melee skill. Improving the quality of this gem improves Enfeeble.
-Enfeeble - Our curse that makes us harder to be hit by Attacks (not spells), take less critical damage, and take less overall damage too. Focusing specifically on the general damage mitigation of the skill, we'll inadvertently be improving Enfeeble's base damage mitigation from 30% to 45% (since we'll be improving curses in the passive tree for Temporal Chains).

4 Link - Offering and Escape (Socket in gloves or boots)
-Cast When Damage Taken (Level 1) - Automatically casts linked spells. Linked spells can't be self casted. (For this set of links it's optimal to have CwDT on one of the end links and Desecrate right after it. This will ensure that Desecrate casts before the offering skill. But it's not important at all. There are almost always corpses around. I don't reroll socket colours to get this.)
-Desecrate (Level 7) - Guarantees Corpses for our Offering Skill.
-An Offering Skill of your choice (Level 8) - Consumes coprses to provide the Offering's benefit to your minions.
-Phase Run (Level 3) - This is our escape. It grants us extra movement speed and phasing (we can run through enemies) when it's active. (If you went with melee and Fortify above, you'll want to replace Phase Run with a FULL LEVEL Summon Holy Relic here. You'll have to self cast it.)

2 Link, 3 Socket - Ally Damage and Chill (Socket in your weapon or shield)
-Hatred - Adds cold damage to our allies, as a result increasing the chill effect on enemies.
-Generosity Support - Greatly improves Hatred. Typically, auras affect both the caster and their allies. When you attach Generosity to an aura, it improves the aura substantially for your allies but removes the entire effect on yourself. Perfect :). This skill means that the Commander of Darkness ascendancy node will not impact us. It'll only benefit our minions. Just FYI.
-Summon Carrion Golem - This golem gets bonus damage based on how many minions are around it but more importantly it gives the minions around it bonus damage as well.

3 Link - SLOOOOOW (Socket in your weapon or shield)
-Blasphemy Support (20%) - Turns Temporal Chains into an aura.
-Temporal Chains (20%) - Our curse that slows the enemy. With the improvements on the passive tree, this will slow all enemy actions from 29% to +70%.
-Enhance Support - Enhance is a DROP ONLY gem. It greatly impacts the value of Temporal Chains' slow, so as soon as it drops, start leveling it. It only has three levels and each level takes a LONG time to level up. It's first level gives no benefit, second level gives +8% to linked gem quality, third level gives 16%. It takes so long to level that you will only earn level 3 by yourself if this is the only build you play all league ;)...if you play lots. If you find an Enhance with quality, lucky you...it'll level faster.
*This build is totally fine without Enhance. It’s just bonus to have.

Corpses for Zombies (Optional) - (Socket in 2nd Weapon Set (hit X on PC or LT+RS on console (without any screens open)))
-Desecrate - Corpses to raise Zombies from before a map.

***Note: If a skill has two triggers attempting to cast it, the skill will become inactive. Skills can only have one active trigger. So, for the link that has CwDT, CoH, and Enfeeble, both the CoH and Enfeeble will have to be outside the CwDT's requirement threshold (trigger range). So you'll only start seeing your curses applied once those gems require a character level of 39 or more.

Remember that you won't be applying both curses until you have unlocked the ability (from the tree and ascendancy) to have 2 total curses applied on an enemy.
I set up both curses as soon as I can, even if I can't apply 2, and just let them apply whatever the game decides until I have the ability to apply both. I'm not concerned about it as I level. Everything will die quickly no matter what.
ANYTHING YOU WANT! - I like having a shield and one-handed weapon instead of two one-handed weapons. It's just a preference; no right or wrong there.

If you’re new to PoE, check out the Tips for New Players link. It gives lots of help and tips on gear, mods, currency, levelling, and endgame mapping. Some good to know stuff that you'd hate not knowing.

- Weapon - Anything you like. (Eventually you'll want a Convoking Wand. It's a wand base type that can roll minion specific mods that other weapons can't.)
- Shield or Second Weapon - Anything you like.
- Head - Anything you like.) Eventually you'll want a Bone Helmet. It has a Minion Damage implicit. They start dropping around character level 73.)
- Chest - Anything you like.
- Hands - Anything you like.
- Feet - Anything you like.
- Amulet - Anything you like.
- Ring - Anything you like.
- Ring - Anything you like.
- Belt - Anything you like.
- Jewel - Anything you like.
- Flasks - Anything you like. I simply use 4 health flasks (all modified to remove bleeding) and Quicksilver or Quartz Flask that removes Chill/Freeze.

Your goal on your weapon(s) is:
- Anything Minion
- Any other minor thing that helps (resists, attributes...). This isn't important. It's just a bonus.

Your goal on the rest of your gear is:
- Increases to Maximum life
- Increases to Resists
- Increases to Movement Speed (Typically on Boots)
- Anything Minion
- Ensuring you have high enough attributes for your skills.

Remember that the only mods that help minion damage SPECIFICALLY SAY "minion" or "ally". Any other improvements to damage only affect you.

*Make sure none of your gear in any way adds Cold or Fire Damage or we'll get the negative effect of Elemental Equilibrium (node in the Passive Tree), not the positive part.

- Here are my 3.8 customized loot filters (PC). They will make looting a lot more relaxing for those that play my builds.

This is my setup if you're interested. I play the same as the guide unless I'm testing something out.
Passive Tree
Passive tree link

3.8's PasteBin - https://pastebin.com/x6Z2v3cC - Pastebin for Path of Building. (Copy the link, open Path of Building, click on “New”, then click “Import/Export Build”, click “Import from Pastebin…”, paste the link.)
Passive Tree Explained
The passive tree is easy to understand:
You'll start as a Witch. We start as a witch because there is only one subclass in the game that greatly benefits minions and to reach that subclass (ascendancy) you must start as a witch.

**Just follow the tree and take the nodes as they come. You'll find it quite naturally balanced. The tree will take you to level 91; it'll be easy to achieve. Pick anything you like after that. (If I was to level this character again, I'd probably do the East side first, then North, then South, then West.)

Tree Focuses:
- Minions - I've selected the nodes that increase minion limits and really focused on minion life. I want the Zombies to live despite their aggression and I want Minion Instability to do lots of damage too. I focused more on the Zombie Slam and since that skill always hits, minion accuracy wasn't too valuable. The same point goes for the Skeletons with Minion Instability.
- Curses - This build focuses on curse efficiency which means we needed the nodes that improve curse efficiency.
- Jewels - Jewel slots are amazing. Jewels are items you can find that you can actually allocate on your tree. They can give almost anything from health, damage, resists...anything. We will have only one jewel slow selected :(. As great as jewels are, I find managing them and remembering what I have socketed, exhausting. So I typically only have one slot per character. What's really neat is you can swap jewels in and out of your passive tree anytime.
- Health. You need it to live. :)
- Minion Instability - It's what our skeletons revolve around and it gives payback for killing our Zombies. I explain this in the Build Mechanics section.
- Elemental Equilibrium - We get lots of damage from this notable. It's explained in the Build Mechanics section.

Don't forget about attributes. You'll pass some nodes on the tree that give +30 to Strength or Dexterity. If you don't have items to cover what you're short in, feel free to select some of these as you pass them. You'll get respec points that will let you remove them later once you have better gear.

Now, feel free to modify this is anyway. This is just my preference for easy Solo Self Found.

Take your time to look at each skill as they come along. Some of the nodes are pretty dramatic.

Some quests earn you respec points in case you regret any decisions you made on the tree. You can also use Orbs of Regret for the same thing.
As you go through the game you'll come across Trials of Ascendancy. Starting in Act 3 you'll see their value. Once you have completed all 6 of the first set of trails, you'll get to attempt your first Labyrinth (lab). Good luck! Upon completion Choose Necromancy. You get two ascendancy points per lab. There are four labs for a total of 8 points. (Redoing the same lab difficulty will not reward you with more ascendancy points if you've already completed it.)

You can spend your points in any order you like. My preference is as follows:
- 1st Two Points - Mindless Aggression. Increases Minion Damage, Movement Speed, and Attack/Cast Speed
- 2nd Two Points - Unnatural Strength. This increases the level of ALL of our minion skill gems; even their maximum level. Minion gems get stronger and stronger the higher their level. This is our strongest node.
- 3rd Two Points - Bone Barrier. This is a busy node. It gives us physical damage reduction, elemental resist, and increased life recovery rate per minion up. But most importantly, it gives our minions more life. It also gives us a free skill, Bone Armour. Free is nice. It can be manually cast after you assign it a button.
- 4th Two Points - Commander of Darkness. The aura benefits of this build are only for Hatred. Curses turned into auras do not apply to these bonuses. Hatred will, therefore, be the only aura that affects our minions so they'll get a 3% increased attack speed. The 30% increase in damage is only applied once, no matter how many auras your minions have benefiting them. The 20% to resists will help cap our zombies' elemental resists, which is huge. Hatred doesn't apply to us because we linked it with Generosity. This node doesn't affect us at all, only our minions.
Choose any you like as they come across. I personally like physical damage reduction and movement speed but there are no make or break options here. Just preferences.
You'll get most of the attributes that you require to use your gems from the tree. You'll need a little bit of Strength and a bunch of Dexterity.

You'll Be Short:
Strength: 17
Dexterity: 64
Intelligence: 0

Needing 64 Dex is a lot. So keep your eye out for gear with Dex. Amulets can roll lots. Though we don't need almost any extra Str., it'll typically come late in the tree. So don't pass by Str. mods apathetically.

From the Tree You'll Get:
Strength: 94
Dexterity: 34
Intelligence: 322

Your Gems Need:
Strength: 111
Dexterity: 98
Intelligence: 155
Media and Extras (Videos/Tools/Filters)
- Videos? 3 options:
- The 3.8's example video above
- My SLOW-MO ZOMBIES playlist showing my most recent sessions with the build.
- My broadcast channel. Mixer keeps the last 14 days worth of broadcasts.
I don't always play awake, but I'd rather play than not :).

- Software:
- PoEMate - The mobile planner I use (if the link doesn't work in your area, just search PoEMate in your mobile store).
- Path of Building - The desktop character planner I use.
- 3.8's Pastebin - https://pastebin.com/x6Z2v3cC - (Copy the link, open Path of Building, click on “New”, then click “Import/Export Build”, click “Import from Pastebin…”, paste the link.)

Loot Filters:
- My customized 3.8 filters, their details, and how to download them are located here.
For New-ish Players (How I Play/Build Mechanics/Newbie Tips)
How I Play This Build/How it Functions in Gameplay
This build is really easy to play. Sooooo easy.

Quick Version: Move around and zombies kill everything. Summon Skeletons "bombs" for fun.

That's it! Honestly! Everything else is automatic! 1 button fun!

Detailed Version
I use Desecrate from the second weapon set to raise/summon my Zombies and Carrion Golem then turn on Hatred and Temporal Chains.

As we run around maps, our zombies will run at everything they see and kill them. Despite the fact that we have them really aggressive, I've done what I can to have them survive as well. The Zombies will follow you despite their aggression.

Cast Skeletons whenever you want and they'll explode all over the place :). So even if your zombies die, you'll have plenty of damage at your fingertips that can kill any boss. They're both bonus damage and zombie backup ;). One of their linked supports (Infernal Legion) will eat their life away until the minions initiate the Minion Instability node on the tree causing them to explode for lots of fire damage. Minion Instability makes any minion explode once they reach the Low Life state (35% life or lower).

Our Cast when Damage Taken gems take up two of our 4 links. Set at level 1, they'll be cast basically whenever an enemy breaths on us ;). Combined, they'll automatically apply Elemental Equilibrium with Ball Lightning (this must be lightning as Minion Instability is fire damage and Hatred gives cold damage), apply Enfeeble via Ball Lightning, give our minions the offering perks, and give us phasing and movement speed. All that whenever we get hit. Just make sure you move somewhere safe :).

Hatred gives all of our minions within the radius of the aura lots of extra cold damage.

Our Temporal Chains curse aura dramatically slows enemies within its radius.

*Because of my limitations I just move, cast once (Skeletons)...move, cast once...move, cast once...move, cast once...;) Staying moving and casting skills that have a duration keep me alive without needing too much attention.

Some Extra Notes:
I explain the actual mechanics in the Build Mechanics Explained for New Players section.

- They'll be slow to level at first but once you find that they don't need to be resurrected anymore, you'll start flying through the story.
- Zombies will survive 95% of the Atlas. Unfortunately, the 5% they suck at are some of the endgame bosses. I've found that focusing too much on how many zombies I have alive, kept me from keeping myself alive. Convocation is typically what people would use to get their Zombies out of danger, but I don't have to ability to focus on the screen long enough to use Convocation efficiently. My solution? Skeletons.

- Even though it's only a four-link, it's strong. Without any Zombies raised, this build can clear the whole Atlas with just this 4 link.

- When you are around enemies, your Temporal Chains will immediately be applied to them slowing them dramatically. Hatred will give all minions within radius lots of extra cold damage. At the max gem level, both auras will cover almost a standard size screen (North/South).

- Offerings are skills that give buffs to our minions. Once cast, the offering skill consumes corpses. The more corpses it consumes, the more you get from it. If no corpses can be consumed, the skill doesn't cast.

- Unless the enemy is Hexproof (curse proof), Enfeeble will make your enemies deal a lot less damage, have weaker critical hits, and are a lot less likely to Hit you with Attacks (not spells).

So a lot happens but all you're doing is moving, casting once...moving, casting once...moving, casting once...:)
Build Mechanics Explained for New Players
Cast when Damage Taken
Cast when Damage Taken (CwDT) is a gem that automatically casts linked spells (not attacks) when your character takes a certain amount of damage. The lower the level of CwDT, the less damage it needs to cast its linked spells. The higher the level of CwDT, the more damage it needs to cast linked gems.

CwDT cannot support ACTIVE skills with a higher player level requirement than that of the CwDT gem itself. For spells to be cast by CwDT, the spell has wot be within the required level listed on the gem. As you level gems, you'll see that they all have certain player levels you have to be at in order to use them. CwDT does too. You'll notice in the CwDT gem description that it'll only cast spells under a certain required level. That requirement level goes up as CwDT levels. Linked SUPPORT gems have no boundaries and can be fully levelled.

The benefit to a high-level CwDT at a high level is that we can have high-level gems attached to it (Stone Golem). The benefit to a low-level CwDT is that you can have spells being cast frequently. Good for utility spells (applying curses and such).

You can't manually cast spells that are linked to CwDT and within CwDT's gem requirement level.

Curses are debuffs that you can put on an enemy. There are quite a few curses in the game, not all of them are beneficial to every build. I have chosen two curses for this build: Temporal Chains which slows every action of the enemy; and Enfeeble which makes the enemy deal less damage and hit less often.

By default in POE, every character can only apply one curse per enemy. There is a node on the passive tree that increases this limit by one. We'll be getting it and increasing the effectiveness of these curses as well.

There is a node on the tree that acts as a curse but isn't. It's called Elemental Equilibrium. It acts as a curse that lowers enemy resists. We'll be getting that too. It can be applied to every enemy.

A big part of this build are the two curses I have chosen. Curses can be cast manually as a spell that applies the selected curse to an area, or you can link a support skill called Blasphemy which will make the linked curses Auras that are always around you. Curses turned to Auras each reserve 35% of our mana (linking Enhance Support will increase that reservation %, which we'll be doing). We are going to attempt to have our curses as strong as possible. That'll take some gem and passive tree investment. Temporal Chains at its maximum level slows all enemy actions by 29%. With the appropriate investment, we can make enemies close to 75% slower with Temporal Chains (this skill cannot slow enemies beyond 75%). Enfeeble, our other curse, does not have a cap. Enfeeble has a lot of great defences. It makes us harder to be hit by Attacks (not spells), we take less critical damage, and we'll take less overall damage too. Focusing specifically on the general damage mitigation of the skill, we'll be improving Enfeeble's base damage mitigation from 30% to 45%.

Unless an enemy is "Hexproof" (curse proof), our curse will work. Curses are 33% less effective against Area/Map bosses and 66% less effective against the Shaper and his Guardians unless otherwise stated on the gem. That's OK though. The rest of the build is good enough. :)

Curse Math for those that Care :)
Elemental Equilibrium
Elemental Equilibrium (EE) is a node on the passive tree. It gives enemies negative resists to elements you don't hit enemies with...if you've hit them with an element.
So if I hit an enemy with lightning, the enemy now has 25% extra lightning resistance and -50% to both fire and cold resists. If my spell or attack hits an enemy with lightning and fire, the enemy is only now susceptible to cold damage.

A big part of the Zombie damage in this build comes from our Hatred aura. It gives cold damage to the Zombies. Minion Instability's explosions are fire damage. So make sure that ANY item, jewel, or implicit mod from the ascendancies does not add cold or fire damage in any way.

A neat thing about EE is that it is only applied to enemies by us, not our minions. So, even though our minions are hitting the enemies over and over with cold or fire damage, they aren't giving the enemies extra resists of those elements.

Questions? Let me know.
Enemies can have their resists lowered in a few different ways. They all stack together. So if Spell A and Spell B both lowered an enemy resistance by 10, the enemy would be -20 to that resist. Exposure stacks with other sources of lowering resists, but it doesn't stack with itself. So if two skills that apply Exposure of the same element are applied to the same enemy, they won't stack. Only the strongest will be applied.
How Minions Work
Raise Zombie is our main skill and it is a minion skill. Any minion's damage only increases with items or passive tree nodes that specifically increase "minion damage". If a node on the tree or mod on an item doesn't specify minion damage, it won't be useful at all. So something that says, "Increases your damage by 30%" won't improve the damage your minions make. In this build your character will do almost no damage, only your minions will. We will also be using skeletons and a golem.

Minions ARE considered Allies. So auras, nodes, or items that improve allies will benefit our minions. (Not every skill that reserves mana is an aura.)

Minions are NOT considered Party Members and will not gain any benefit from Party Member benefits.

Our minions Attack enemies, they don't Cast spells (except for a few vaal skeletons). So anything that improves minion/ally Attack Speed will help our build out, but not Cast Speed (that's for spells).

Lastly, minions are their own entity. Once you bring them into the world, they attack who they want. Some minions are summoned, others are raised. Summoned minions (like the Skeletons we'll be using) don't follow you but will keep attacking and chasing enemies within their attack radius. These minions have a duration. Other minions are raised, such as our Zombies. They do not have a duration and will stay raised until dead. These types of minions will follow us wherever we go. They will also follow the lead of summoned minions as well.

Lastly lastly, minions don't care about you. So if you're taking damage, they aren't going to run back and help you. You have to help yourself.
Minion Instability
Minion Instability is a notable node on the passive tree that makes any minion at 35% of its life or lower explode dealing fire damage. The explosion is valued at 33% of the exploding minion's maximum life. Both Minion Damage and Minion Life nodes and support gems improve the explosion damage of Minion Instability.
Slow Focus
I. LOVE. SLOWING. ENEMIES. So in this build, we're going to slow enemies. Why? Lots of good reasons...but the most important reason is: Because.

Path of Exile has two basic ways that can "slow" a character/enemy:
1-Slowing Movement Speed only
2-Slowing all actions (including movement speed).
This build will focus on the two of the few methods in the game that slow ALL actions of an enemy: Temporal Chains and Chill. These two methods of slowing can stack (to a cap of 75% total slow).

Chill - An elemental effect from Cold damage that slows all actions (movement, cast/attack speed) up to 30%. The % of slow (chill) imposed on an enemy is based on the total Cold Damage done to the enemy in one hit. So the higher the cold damage of an initial hit (not cumulative) the greater the "chill effect"...the slower the enemy is.

Temporal Chains - A curse that slows all normal enemy actions (movement, cast/attack speed) up to a base value of 29% but with investment can be capped at 75%. This build will have Temporal Chains slowing enemies at 59%, 65%, or 71%, depending on the level of our Enhance Support Gem.
Vaal Skills
Vaal skills are super versions of normal skills that have a duration and cooldown given to them. We're hoping to use Vaal Summon Skeletons. Early on in the game Vaal skills typically only drop in Corrupted areas (though as the game progresses you'll find them a little more often.) Corrupted areas can be randomly found attached to maps as a side area. Kill the boss inside these areas, loot their "stash", and hope you get the vaal skill you want.

Vaal Summon Skeletons give you both the Summon Skeleton skill and Vaal Summon Skeletons in one gem. Both skills require their own key bind/button. You can use Summon Skeletons like usual but the Vaal skill requires you to kill enemies, or damage Rare or Unique enemies. Once the skill is ready to use, you can use the skill anytime. But remember, any loading screen in the game automatically resets the vaal skill and it needs to be refilled. So don't save it too long (boss arena doors don't have load screens (except for The Lord's Labyrinth). Once the skill has been used it'll have a short duration where the skill can't refill.

Vaal Summon Skeletons instantly gives you an extra 30+ skeletons with one button press :).
Tips for New Players
Loose Ends (Map Mods/Gem Locations/Bandits)
Endgame Mods to Avoid
At the end of the game, the levels (maps) you try and clear will have random modifiers (mods) allocated to them. There are A LOT of mods that can go on a map.

There are only a couple mods that we can, but shouldn’t run:
-No Mana Regen (our movement skill keeps us alive)
-Reflect Elemental or Physical damage (combined with other mods, some maps with Reflect will kill our minions quickly)

Some mods will be inconvenient, but they won't be impossible to run.
Hexproof maps (curse immune enemies) would suck, but it's not the end of the world. You just have to be a little more careful.

You'll learn your personal preferences the more you play.
Quests and Gem Locations - Quick Reference
- I suggest doing every quest in the game. It doesn't take long. If you're too eager to get to mapping in the endgame, here is a link to all the quests that give Skill Points as a reward.

Bandits - With the Bandits in Act 2, I kill them all for the extra 2 skill points. You, of course, do what you like.

**Remember to prioritize. You may not be lucky enough to get the gear that'll let you play with all your gems as soon as they are available. So do what works best for you until the gear comes (don't be quick to sell your old gear in case something doesn't work out).

List of Gems in Order of Story Acquisition:
Drop Only - Level 1 - Enhance Support
Drop Only - Level 10 - Vaal Summon Skeletons (Replaces Summon Skeleton Gem)
Act 1 - Enemy at the Gate - Reward - Level 1 - Raise Zombie
Act 1 - The Caged Brute - Reward - Level 8 - Infernal Legion
Act 1 - The Caged Brute - Purchase - Level 8 - Minion Damage Support x2
Act 1 - The Caged Brute - Purchase - Level 10 - Summon Skeleton (Until you get the Vaal version.)
Act 1 - The Siren’s Cadence - Purchase - Level 12 - Offering Skill
Act 2 - Deal with the Bandits - Reward - Level 15 - Kill Everyone - 2 Skill Points
Act 2 - Intruders in Black - Reward - Level 16 - Desecrate x2
Act 2 - Sharp and Cruel - Purchase - Level 18 - Minion Life Support x2
Act 3 - Lost in Love - Purchase - Level 24 - Hatred
Act 3 - Sever the Right Hand - Reward - Level 28 - Ball Lightning
Act 3 - A Fixture of Fate - Purchase - Level 24 - Enfeeble
Act 3 - A Fixture of Fate - Purchase - Level 24 - Temporal Chains
Act 3 - A Fixture of Fate - Reward - Level 31 - Blasphemy Support
Act 3 - A Fixture of Fate - Purchase - Level 31 - Elemental Army Support
Act 3 - A Fixture of Fate - Purchase - Level 31 - Feeding Frenzy Support
Act 3 - A Fixture of Fate - Purchase - Level 31 - Generosity Support
Act 4 - Breaking the Seal - Reward - Level 31 - Carrion Golem
Act 4 - The Eternal Nightmare - Purchase - Level 38 - Cast when Damage Taken x2
Act 4 - The Eternal Nightmare - Purchase - Level 38 - Curse on Hit
Act 6 - Fallen from Grace - Purchase - Level 31 - Fortify Support
Act 6 - Fallen from Grace - Purchase - Level 31 - Phase Run
List of Gems in Order by Level:
Level 1 - Enhance Support
Level 1 - Raise Zombie
Level 8 - Infernal Legion
Level 8 - Minion Damage Support x2
Level 10 - Summon Skeleton (Until you get the Vaal version)
Level 10 - Vaal Summon Skeletons (Replaces Summon Skeleton)
Level 12 - Offering
Level 15 - Kill Everyone - 2 Skill Points
Level 16 - Desecrate x2
Level 18 - Minion Life Support x2
Level 24 - Hatred
Level 24 - Enfeeble
Level 24 - Temporal Chains
Level 28 - Ball Lightning
Level 31 - Blasphemy Support
Level 31 - Generosity Support
Level 31 - Elemental Army Support
Level 31 - Feeding Frenzy Support
Level 31 - Fortify Support
Level 34 - Carrion Golem
Level 34 - Phase Run
Level 38 - Cast when Damage Taken x2
Level 38 - Curse on Hit
(Let me know if you saw any errors in the list.)

- There are two NPCs that sell all purchasable gems: the first one is Siosa in the Library in Act 3 (you have to do his quest first (the Library is connected to The Imperial Gardens)), the second NPC is Lilly Roth in Act 6 (Do her quest in Act 6).
Awesome. So if you have any questions let me know and I'll respond the best I can. Don't feel embarrassed. Ask anything you like. It's easy to miss/overlook details in the guide or on the wiki. Likely someone else wants to know the answer too :). (I likely won't have time to evaluate characters (sorry!) but I've listed in general what mods to look for on your items so you know what to look for and improve upon. Don't forget to check the Tips section if you're new too.)

Replies: Feel free to respond to other players' posts! The more that's out there, the more we learn. Please be kind, respectful, and theoretical (not a Know-It-All) when helping others out. I will happily respond to questions but please note that I have multiple guides and I'd like to respond to each equally. I’ll do my best to get back to you as quickly as possible but set your expectations that I'll respond to each guide once a week. (Too much time responding to guides makes an unhappy spouse...an unhappy spouse means less time for guide replies...less time for guide replies makes an unhappy me...Unhappy spouse + unhappy me = an epic hockey fight with sweet uppercuts which I would obviously lose...a lost hockey fight against my spouse = busted hands that I can't type with, no teeth to voice type with, and black eyes that I can't read with. So one build a day, m'kay? K.)

Here's a list of my OTHER GUIDES if you're interested :).

OH! Don't forget, to support GGG by buying a skin for all your favourite skills you use. They last forever, you look rad, and it keeps PoE going too :).

Double OH! I make a new thread every league for every guide I do. So all the comments, questions, and answers you read are all relevant for this current expansion. (At the end of a league I post links in the previous guide to guide players to the newest rendition of the build.)

K. Done. Happy gaming :).
https://www.ForeverExiled.com/: Forever Exiled, A Path of Exile Podcast
Wrecker of Days' One-Stop-Shop: Stress-Free Builds (& Filters): 1-Button, SSF, Item Freedom: https://www.pathofexile.com/forum/view-thread/2606288
Last edited by Wrecker_of_Days on Dec 11, 2019, 9:42:35 AM
Last bumped on Dec 23, 2019, 6:56:31 PM
Wife and I can't wait to try this out; thanks for all that you do!
Will start with this one as well :)
Never played a nerco build before, But I am going to give this one a go. Due to old age 60+ I like the easy on the buttons builds.. Thanks for the hard work.
Tomorrow ! Cant w8 to try your build !
Chima wrote:
Wife and I can't wait to try this out; thanks for all that you do!
SauMaris wrote:
Will start with this one as well :)
jpkiwi wrote:
Never played a nerco build before, But I am going to give this one a go. Due to old age 60+ I like the easy on the buttons builds.. Thanks for the hard work.
limoj wrote:
Tomorrow ! Cant w8 to try your build !
Hey Everyone!

I don't like grouping responses together but I must tonight (I'm almost done updating my other guides before league launch).

Thank you all very much for your excitement and kind words! Let me know what you think! The build will be different for the first time in a long time and I'm always up for feedback! I can't wait to play with all the changes!

Thanks for taking the time to be encouraging and have a great league!

(Ask or suggest anything you like!)
https://www.ForeverExiled.com/: Forever Exiled, A Path of Exile Podcast
Wrecker of Days' One-Stop-Shop: Stress-Free Builds (& Filters): 1-Button, SSF, Item Freedom: https://www.pathofexile.com/forum/view-thread/2606288
Tried your Slow builds in the past and loved them, so easy to follow and play, even in SSF.

After playing melee last league, I'm gonna give your Slow-mo build a go once again in Blight SSF.
This gonna be my start build in blight.
Never play necro before.
Bringing forward a response from the other thread so all the information is in the same spot :)

The Zombie Slam cooldown is now in the gem. At level 20, each zombie will only have a 1-second cooldown for the skill. It's much better than it used to be. Zombies also deal more damage and have more life than they used to. They will get insanely strong past level 20 as well.

Right, I follow this line of thought, but previously the slam had no cooldown. This is where a lot of the theorycrafting I am seeing pop up is coming from - if "perma-slam" is no longer a thing - what effect, if any, will it have on clear speed?

I tend to fall on the side of, "according to the math, it doesn't seem like it will be THAT bad", but I also don't disregard the possibility that the impact could be significant. It's something we'll have to wait and see with especially with the changes to minion behavior.

I will admit, I am looking forward to throwing some fiery bone grenades around in the form of Skeletons with Minion Instability ;)
I'm so pumped about your build, I don't even care about the league!!! LOL!

My only question, and it's really a big one.
Can I get an ax with some lightning damage and be a leap slamming cycloner with EE procs at my command? Because I think that would be my all time favorite playstyle :)
I love not being stunned and dream fragments ;)

Great guide again my friend, I can not wait for tomorrow night!

Will there still be +2 helmets? we are talking level 25 minions here... im shaking!!

Played your 3.7 to 3rd ascendancy this week... I am ready... LET'S GO!!!!!

Oh a hint for lab enchantments, look for lightning, fire and cold will hurt the build. Man, a nice lightning enchant will be so awesome!

Also I will be buying 6 raise zombies to level five extras in my alt weapons to try for sweet 21/20% corruption, or the dream 21/23% in the temple.
I will wear your ghost and you will die twice, against me and for me.
That is some cold blooded shit to say...
Last edited by GrunkleBob on Sep 5, 2019, 8:32:30 AM

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