[3.8] Storm Burst Trickster - The Tesla Tower UP: Shaper Down!

This is my first build guide, so let me know if you see anything I can improve. I haven't seen Storm Burst get much love in the forums since its update in 3.6. I've seen UberDan's Occultist from back in March and a couple guides here for Tricksters, but with Blight I think there's untapped potential. There are a couple Trickster Storm Burst guides out there and I took inspiration from a couple of folks I saw on POE Ninja during Legion league when I was looking at league starters for Blight.

The core of this build is converting Storm Burst to full lightning, then using two Call of the Brotherhood rings to convert 80% of that to Cold in order to give us easy shock procs. It's not a new concept (see above), but I think it works really well here. My current gear isn't super optimized but it's worked well through yellow Blighted maps and yellow Elder.

It's a hybrid Life/ES build, but Eldritch battery/Mind Over Matter could work if you can get more life on gear. It's meant to be a league starter and a powerful Blighted Map clearing machine.

Update 21/09/2019: Added videos for Red Elder and Shaper deathless.


Why Trickster?
The ease of getting frenzy and power charges from Swift Killer mean we get a significant boost to crit chance and damage that we can charge up easily before big boss fights. The extra cast speed means more Storm Burst orbs, which means more damage. The extra protection offered by Ghost Dance and Escape Artist means you should have enough time to Flame Dash/Shield Charge out of serious danger. Harness the Void is the real prize giving us a silly amount of extra damage as Chaos. If you can snag a 6L Eternity Shroud this becomes even crazier.

I run around maps dropping Orb of Storms to do most of my trash clearing, then blast yellows and bosses with Storm Burst. Other guides play similar, notably cmillion's Popcorn Trickster. With Blight you can use Orb of Storms as a pseudo tower, and combined with a Wave of Conviction Spell Totem you can cover two additional lanes pretty handily. For bosses, especially ones you can prepare for, I like to channel Storm Burst until I'm topped off on charges, then drop Orb of Storms, Wave of Conviction totem, and pop all my flasks and focus on the boss. This has been incredibly effective in every encounter I've managed (Normal Atziri, Yellow Elder, Red Elder, 75+ Vaal Oversoul, Uber Izaro, Blighted Maps, etc).

Update 19/09/2019: Red Elder went down super fast (see Videos section)

I haven't yet reached Guardians or Shaper but I think it will work well. I do think Chimera will pose a threat, and maybe Minotaur if I get caught.
Update 19/09/2019: Phoenix went down super fast.

Shaper is so mechanics-heavy that knowing the fight is more important than anything else, so I'd expect no trouble there unless I'm grossly underestimating my damage somehow.
Update 21/09/2019: Shaper down Deathless, see Videos. Died to a nasty Chimera map but the other guardians also done deathless. I feel like I'm grossly underselling the damage of the build after running this.

Uber Atziri is probably not an option due to reflect mechanics.
Update 19/09/2019: Can confirm Uber Atziri isn't happening with this build unless you bring a friend.

I'm not certain this build is Uber Elder viable since it'll be difficult to accumulate storm burst orbs while avoiding damage. It really depends on how much work Orb of Storms and Wave of Conviction totem can do.

PoB Pastebin


Pros and Cons
+High Damage
+Great clear
+Orb of Storms and Wave of Conviction Totem act as extra towers during Blight encounters
+Cheap to get up and running

-Survivability is very gear dependent. I wouldn't say glass cannon, but it's no juggernaut.
-Requires significant mana cost investment either through reduced costs or increased regen to maintain channeling.
-Chaos damage is scary. I have a lower life pool with a decent ES pool, so Chaos Damage bypassing ES can be a problem (especially in the Chimera fight). You can go all-ES on gear and go CI, but as a league start that's a bit tricky.
-Elemental Reflect is a no-go. Even with Yugul and Sybil's Lament you can still kill yourself pretty easily.

Save Alira. We need Mana Regen ASAP and the resists help ease gear requirements later. If you can swing the regen and resists elsewhere, kill all of the bandits and grab more Life with the points.

Arakaali and Shakari. Chaos Damage is a big problem and poison immunity saves us a flask affix. If you go Chaos Innoculation, then Lunaris and Tukohama are great.

Swift Killer-->Ghost Dance-->Escape Artist-->Harness the Void
Swift Killer helps keep our damage up until we can equip Moonsorrow. Ghost Dance and Escape Artist keep us alive. Harness the Void is last because it's pure damage and we can't do much damage if we're dead.

Current Gear:

Update 19/09/2019:

2x Call of the Brotherhood rings

-This is the crux of the build. The ease of shocking enemies and getting to use Herald of Ice and Hatred is a huge boost to safety from chill/freeze and damage from shocks.


Incursion Paua Amulet with Cold Damage life leech. We don't have many ways to recover life and the life leech on an Incursion amulet is really nice. The Mana regen from a Paua Amulet helps with our Mana sustain issues as well. Other stats to look for are Resists, more mana regen, Life, Crit Chance, and Crit Multiplier.
Anointing is up to you. Prodigal Perfection was the best I could manage with my oils at this time. You can use this to slot more Mana Regen via Deep Thoughts, Mystic Bulwark, or Mental Rapidity while leveling since I believe those are fairly cheap to anoint.


Due to Escape Artist, you want as much ES on a helmet as you can find. From there you want resists, Life, reduced mana reserved, and Storm Burst or Orb of Storms enchants are great. For Storm Burst enchants, Damage is a safe bet, but I believe Create Additional Orbs gives you more damage. For Orb of Storms enchants you want increased AOE, then crit chance, then damage. Orb of Storms does a surprising amount of damage, but its main purpose is to clear trash, leech ES, and proc innervate, since a larger AOE means you can hit things further away. It also helps it work as an additional tower during Blight encounters.


Eternity Shroud is the goal. If you snag one, go either all blue sockets or 5B 1G if you want to use Hypothermia (check your PoB to see which is better for you). Then stack as much Shaper gear as you can and profit. On a budget any 6L Evasion/ES chest with Life and Resists work great. For a reliable option, a Shroud of the Lightless adds a lot of survivability through Shade Form and is a much easier pseudo-6L to get than most other options. For bossing you want to avoid Carcass Jack as the increased AOE spreads the Storm Burst orbs out too much; it's a stellar option for clear speed though. Shavronne's Wrapping or Solaris Lorica can help the Chaos damage problem, but you lose a ton of potential ES this way.


Asenath's Gentle Touch is a great choice for a unique. Temporal Chains and Blind are big boosts to survivability. Failing that, Shaper Gloves with Blind support is a nice budget option. You want Resists, Life, and Cast speed primarily. You'll want to socket Orb of Storms here.


Kaom's Roots if you need life and want to skip the freeze flask.
Evasion and/or ES boots with movespeed, resists, and life are a boring but obvious choice. Shaped boots are nice, especially with Chance to Dodge Attack Hits.

If you do go with Kaom's then I'd drop Wave of Conviction or use it in a 3L over Shield Charge like this: Wave-->Phys to Light-->Spell Totem. Depends on how important Fortify or exposure is to you.


Stygian Vise with life and resists as needed. Add an Abyss jewel with life and some combination of physical, lightning, or cold spell damage (while holding a shield). A Shaped belt with increased mana recovery rate can go a long way, too. A Cold Doryani's Invitation is a great starter belt for running maps.


I'm using a Light of Lunaris shield since it's the best balance of damage and survivability for me right now. The Unshattered Will is another excellent choice, especially if you need the resists. A rare spirit shield with some combination of Life, ES, resists, and spell damage would also work fine. I've played around with the +1 to all lightning spell skill gems too and that's a decent damage bump as well.


I went with wands, but I believe sceptres can work just fine. too In the early game a Storm Prison is solid, upgrading to a Cerberus Limb and then Moonsorrow when you can. Ideally you want to end with a meta crafted shaper weapon with physical as extra lightning, elemental as extra chaos, spell damage, cast speed, crit chance, and % increased lightning/cold damage. If you tweak your regen and leeching in the tree, Shimmeron can be a really strong damage option.


Bubbling Divine Life Flask of Staunching
Atziri's Promise
Experimenter's Diamond Flask of <Dousing/Warding/Heat>
Experimenter's Sulphur Flask of <Dousing/Warding/Heat>
Experimenter's Silver Flask of <Dousing/Warding/Heat>
You can swap the "of Heat" flask with Taste of Hate, but I don't think it's worth it.
If you're too squishy, lose some damage and use a stibnite, jade, or quartz flask.

Early on you'd want a mana flask with either increased cast speed or more recovery but slower recovery rate.
Update 19/09/2019: If you don't have to worry about one of the above ailments you can swap in a Rumi's Concoction for more damage and security as I have done. I keep an anti-curse sulphur flask for temp chains maps though.

Gem Links in order of importance
Storm Burst-->Physical to Lightning-->Arcane Surge-->Infused Channeling-->Concentrated Effect-->Hypothermia/Elemental Focus
If you use Shroud of the Lightless, drop the 6th gem. Use Elemental focus if you're ok losing the shock/freeze from storm burst, and relying on Orb Of Storms to proc that instead. Arcane Surge is really important to keep our mana regen on point, and even at level 20 it's pretty easy to have it up all the time.

Orb of Storms-->Chain-->Innervate-->ES Leech
Orb of Storms is a beast. Innervate gives us more damage, Chain lets it reach out and clear giant packs of trash while you run through them, ES leech keeps us topped off. It's a pseudo tower in Blights and it's just an all-around great skill. Storm brand can work here too, but I think Orb of Storms is better in Blight.

Spell Totem-->Wave of Conviction-->Physical to Lightning-->Increased Duration
This gives us another tower and boosts our damage through cold exposure. Increased duration can be swapped with increased AOE, multi totems, or any damage gem if you don't mind recasting more often. Just keep in mind that duration also affects how far out the wave goes as well as the exposure debuff. You could swap this to a Cast When Damage Taken setup if you don't want to actively cast it. If you do that, then move Lightning Golem here and drop increased duration.

Hatred-->Herald of Ice-->Vaal Clarity-->Enlighten
Use Enlighten if you want more mana available, it's not strictly required though. Vaal Clarity should only need to be leveled enough to even out mana spending while casting Storm Burst. This will depend on your gear and tree so I can't give a specific level, but for me right now it's level 6.

Summon Lightning Golem-->Faster Casting-->Flame Dash
I'm thinking of swapping this around since Flame Dash doesn't really benefit from Fast Cast anymore. Something like a 2L Cast When Damage Taken-->Lightning Golem and a 1L Flame Dash would save you a button, or you could move Flame Dash to another 3L and add Minion Life or Steelskin to this link. In practice Keeping the golem up hasn't been a problem, but it'd be nice to not have to press it. Lightning Golem can be Chaos or Stone Golem if you want more survivability.

Shield Charge-->Fortify-->Increased Duration/Faster Attacks
We get increased duration from the tree, but more is nice so we don't have to charge into danger too much. Faster attacks would let us zoom around more. I think it's preference more than anything. Physical damage is a problem if we get hit through our evasion, and this helps mitigate some of that.

Leveling Guide
Helm: Goldrim
Chest: Tabula Rasa
Gloves: Lochtonial Caress
Shield: Springleaf
Weapon: Lifesprig --> Storm Prison/Axiom Perpetuum -->Cerberus Limb-->Moonsorrow
Boots: Wanderlust

Start by grabbing freezing pulse until you can get Storm Burst, then switch weapons to Axiom Perpetuum or Storm Prison.

Get as many mana regen nodes and spell damage/crit chance/crit multi nodes as you can. Lucidity should be priority 1, then Arcane Will, Stormweaver, and Shaper.

Add clarity and Herald of Thunder until you get Call of the Brotherhoods, then swap to Herald of Ice.

As early as you can (level 40ish) grab an amulet with Cold Damage leeched as life after you get the CotB rings. Until you grab the amulet pick up some spell damage leeched as energy shield nodes. Around level 47 you can use Cerberus Limb with Light of Lunaris to get some consistent life leech, just make sure your Light of Lunaris has 30% chance to block (+7% chance to block or better). Until then cycle life flasks to keep you topped up.

Once you're safe on mana regen you can add Hatred.

Upgrade to Moonsorrow at level 59. The increased damage means you won't need the leech from Cerberus Limb, and the 10% chance to blind on hit is nice because we hit a lot. Keep an eye out for Shaped Prophecy Wands with gain physical as extra lightning or elemental as extra chaos damage. Opal wands are super expensive and I've found a couple decent deals on Prophecy wands.

If you're running short on stats (likely dex) then grab the +30 node Alacrity either via Anointing (3x clear oil) or grabbing it while leveling. Craft stats on gear as needed.

Thanks for reading, if you have any suggestions to improve the build I'm all ears. If you use the build and like it let me know. Once I get to some more interesting content I'll try to record some videos.

Last edited by Bladeslaw on Sep 21, 2019, 11:30:42 PM
Last bumped on Nov 8, 2019, 4:49:25 PM
This build has been working pretty well for me so far. I'm going through the campaign and at 43 with a Tabula and old gear from Act 1, I'm mowing down everything in sight. That's with Storm Burst 5-linked to keep mana costs down, plus I haven't even bothered with Orb/Wave yet. I'm looking forward to mapping soon. :)
Glad it's working out! I've updated the guide with a couple videos showcasing its single target damage. Once Blight maps stop crushing my PC I'll try and record a clear to show off its tower-ness.
Just wondering about your pob - how do you get a 50% shock effect on bosses like shaper?
Would it make sense to change herald of ice with skitterbots for 19% shock effect?

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