[3.8] BlastingMouz's Max Block Herald of Agony Bow Gladiator

Uses the max block mechanics from the gladiator ascendancy to create a tanky herald of agony build that uses auras and curses to scale the damage of the crawler. I used this build to get my first Uber Elder Kill and have killed multiple Shapers, Uber Atziri, lvl 83 Masterminds, and an Aul.

This is not a very budget build or a build very friendly to ssf. I highly recommend getting the required gear and rares for your character before leveling the character.

Pro's and Con's
+Can ran all content
+Doesnt care about map mods
+Fantastic bosser
+Very tanky

-Expensive to start (about 3 to 5ex)
-Not a fast mapper


Note: GET AS MUCH LIFE AS POSSIBLE ON EVERY GEAR SLOT AND MAKE SURE YOUR RESIST CAPPED. Good slots to focus a lot of resists on are boots (above 100%) and your belt (above 80%). You get a lot of all resistance from your passive tree so this is fairly easy.


Budget (< 1ex)

4link silverwood -> 4/5l silverbranch -> 4/5l quill rain -> 6l silverbranch/quill rain/death’s harp

Get us addition levels for Rain of Arrows while levels and get us a place to house our Herald of Agony once we have our gloves.

Intermediate (~6.5 ex)

Crafted +3 level Minion Bow
Crafting +3 Short Bow

1.)Buy a set of ‘The Porcupine’ div card. Easy to color, pre 6 linked bow Either of the following methods to get only ‘+1 to socketed gems’ (I prefer
the farric wolf alpha route since it saves you a lot of time):

(Cheaper)Transmute the bow to magic rarity -> alt spam to ‘+1 to socketed gems’ -> regal -> Annul off other mods. Cost is on average 200 alts, 2 regal, 3 annuls, but can take up to 1k alt (ends up being around 1ex usually)

(Deterministic) Transmute bow to magic rarity -> alt spam until item has 1 mod -> Regal -> Annul off all mods (Rare bow with no mods) -> Craft ‘cannot roll attack mods on the bow (1ex, craft is found in the pale council quest line) -> beast craft bow with ‘Farric Wolf Alpha’ (ends up costing 1ex, 2 annul, and the cost of the beast)

Multimod on +2 to support, attack speed, minion attack and cast speed, minion damage (5ex 8c)

Endgame (13ex+)

Sudu 7 link Vicious Projectiles bow. This weapon single handedly triples my damage output. There is no alternative for late game and is a bulk of the price of the build. See 7L Vicious Projectile Bow crafting section at the end of guide for step by step break down.


Basis of the build giving most of the block chance for the build. Get one with a max rolled block attack chance.

Optional implicits are ‘physical damage as extra fire’, ‘added fire damage to attacks’, or ‘bow attacks fire an additional arrow’. Do not get one with ‘added lightning damage to attacks’, ‘added cold damage to attacks’, or ‘physical damage as extra lightning damage’ these implicits will ruin the Elemental Equilibrium of the build. See the Elemental Equilibrium portion for an explanation.


Rare helmet with the enchant ‘Herald of Agony has 30% reduced Mana Reservation’ and must have the suffix ‘(4 to 5)%+ reduced mana reserved’. Get as much life as possible here. Minion damage is a nice plus but completely unneeded.
Budget Crafting(.3 to .5ex)

1.)Buy ilvl 72+ armour base helmet with with the ‘Herald of Agony has 30% reduced Mana Reservation’ enchant.
2.)Use ‘Deafening Essence of Loathing’ (reduced mana reserved) to roll the helmet until you get life, some resist, and mana reserved. If you have an open prefix but no life craft life on the helmet or if you have an open suffix but no resist craft some resist on.

Higher Budget Craft(3 to 5ex)

1.)Buy ilvl 84 armour based helmet with the enchant on it (Bone Helmet prefered for the addition damage)
2.)Use Metallic and Bound fossils to roll the base you are looking for ‘Nearby enemies have -9% lightning resist’ and ‘(4 to 5)% reduced mana reserved’. Additionally we are looking for t3+ life or an open prefix to craft life on. Hybrid life/armor is also good along with a resist or regen.

Endgame (20ex+)

1.)Buy an elder ilvl 84+ (84 get us t1 resist)(or 80+ because the Dark Dreams div car make this a common enough base to lab run on)(or 83 for t1 minion damage) bone helmet with the enchant on it
2.)Roll using Pristine, Metallic, and Bound Fossils. Roll for delve hybrid life/%life, life, minion damage, (4 to 5)% mana reserved, and ‘Nearby enemies have -9% lightning resist’. Expect this to take well over 100 of each fossil.

Body Armour

Great chest piece for builds wanting an insane amount of life. Get the highest life roll possible, high elemental resist and armour rolls are also nice. DO NOT GET A SIX LINKED ONE. This is used to hold our aura setup and depending on your mana reservation will either be 4 or 5 linked. See the aura section for specifics.
Good corruptions include ‘added level to aura gems’ and ‘added level to aoe gems’ along with any form of damage mitigation.


This is a drop from one of the Synthesis bosses, who at the time of writing this are found through Zana missions. The ring must have ‘Agony crawler deals % increased damage’ and ‘Herald of Agony has % reduced Mana Reservation’. You want the highest roll possible on the mana reservation roll, but the minimum required amount depends on the aura you can use. More on this in the aura section of the guide. Buy the cheapest on the market and divine the rolls.

Optional good implicits include ‘Global Accuracy’, ‘Added Fire damage” (also to attacks), ‘ Increased Attack Speed’, ‘Increased Life’, or ‘Increased Armor’. Do not get ‘Added cold damage’ or ‘Added lightning damage’ as these will mess with your Elemental Equilibrium.

Other Ring

Rare ring with life and resists. Added accuracy, flat fire damage to attack (if not found on another piece of gear) and attack speed are all useful here.

The new vermillion base is a fantastic option here. Make sure to get a ring with an empty prefix so that you can craft on rank 3 ‘Non-channeled skills have -9 mana cost’ (found through veiled elreon items) to make our convocation and Rain of Arrows free to use. This lets us run no regen/leach maps easily. Mana leech can also be grabbed here or on the tree, but I found it to be clunky and unneeded compared to - mana cost.


Cheap unique that gives us block which is perfect for the build. However the lack of life means it's the first item to be swapped out once you acquire a Lethal Pride Timeless Jewel.

Since the amulet is generally cheap additional block chance or additional curse corruptions are typically easy to get. I recommend starting off with an additional curse corruption before you are high enough level to comfortably grab the ‘Whispers of Doom’ passive tree wheel.

Once you have Both 'Whispers of Doom' and a Lethal Pride I recommend swapping to a rare amulet. Find a rare amulet with good life, resists, added fire damage (if no where else in the build) and an open prefix for the - mana cost craft if not found on your ring. Attack Speed and Accuracy are a nice plus here but are unneeded. You can also get additional attack block on an elder base if you are not using a Lethal Pride.
For the Wealthy

The BiS item for this build, we get another 50% aura to make our crawler even stronger. Get a hatred, haste, or envy one. Vitality is also an option but will make fitting in another 50% aura harder. THIS IS IN NO WAY REQUIRED.


• ‘Wisdom of the Glade’ (+30 int) for before grabbing the Whisper of Doom wheel which pathing to nets us the intelligence required for the build
• ‘Ravenous Horde’ (Minion damage/attack speed/onslaught). Completely insane node that we would never be able to path to normally
• ‘Charisma’ (Reduced Mana Reservation/ Aura Effect). Completely busted node for this build which is a bit out of the way to path to. Lets us reserve another aura. See aura section for setups using this node
•‘Influence’ (Aura Effect). More damage for the crawler, not as strong as ‘Charisma’ though as you cannot reserve another aura


Get a rare pair of elder gloves with ‘Socketed skills are supported by level # Faster Attack’ (20 is prefered but above 16 is fine) and ‘Socketed skills are supported by level # Poison’ (the level doesn’t matter as all levels give the same chance to poison). Any life is great here along with dexterity and flat fire damage to attack if not on another piece of gear.


Rare boots with as much life, movement speed, and resist you can get. The best boot enchants for the build are movespeed, attack speed, and regen if hit.


Rare belt with as much life and resists you can stuff into it. If you have vitality in the build (see aura section) the elder mod ‘life recovery rate’ is extremely powerful. This is my prefered spot to craft Aspect of the Spider.


This build requires alot of very specific jewels. You may not need a mana reserved corruption on any of your jewels depending on the level of your enlighten.

Both Lioneye’s Fall and The Red Nightmare are required for the block they supply to the build. The Lioneye’s Fall is used to transform the staff block nodes into bow block nodes and is required for this build. In the same vain ‘The Red Nightmare’ gives us more block chance and is required to reach max block.

Both Conqueror's Efficiency and Conqueror's Potency are also required. These jewels are quest reward in the story and are very cheap to acquire. Get one from leveling and the other off the market. They work in tandem to reduce the reservation of our aura, and make them stronger.

Lastly, Lethal Pride, Might of the Meek, and the Watcher’s Eye are all recommended for the build.he Lethal Pride must have the ‘commanded by Kiloava’ line which transforms a keynode into ‘Glancing Blows’. This can be divined, as both the number and commander get rerolled each time. Doubles our block chance at the cost of taking half the damage. The added reliability for our block chance allows us to drop our Rumi’s Concoction and The Anvil amulet which allows for the use of another flask and an amulet with life and resists. Use the jewel node below the “Iron Blow” keynode. Might of the meek grants additional block chance, increased life, life regen, and extra resists, what's not to love about this jewel. Watcher’s Eye is pretty unneeded, but if you can fit Vitality into you aura setup the ‘life gained on enemy hit’ mod is fantastic. Phasing and cooldown recovery of movement skills are also nice QoL mods if you can fit haste into the build (in my case through Aul’s Uprising).


Get anti-freeze, bleeding, ignite, and curse mods. Use a max rolled 'block attack damage' Rumi's before you have a Lethal Pride to help reach max block. After that swap to a granite flask with the suffix 'of Iron' for increased armour.

Passive Tree, Ascension, Pantheon, Bandits, and Leveling

Passive Tree

PoB Pastebin:

Path through to Spiritual Aid -> Spiritual Command either through the scion life wheel or through the marauder starting area. Then focus on grabbing life nodes - > jewel sockets -> Whispers of Doom wheel. Use a +30 int node until you path through to Whispers of Doom. Grab Elemental Equilibrium when you have no added cold or lightning damage (IE only fire damage to attacks).

Only includes required gear, this means none of the rare have life/resists. Look at the item section for more detailed gearing choices. Or at the PoB for my character at the end of the guide.


SC: Arena Challenger -> Painforged -> Versatile Combatant (Repec Arena Challenger into Violent Retaliation) -> Arena Challenger

HC: Painforged -> Versatile Combatant -> Violent Retaliation -> Arena Challenger

‘Arena Challenger’ can be swapped for ‘Outmatch and Outlast’ for more consistent endurance charges or for ‘Blood in the Eyes’ for maim while clearing. Both ‘Outmatch and Outlast’ and ‘Blood in the Eyes’ allow you to drop Flesh and Stone for easier mana reservation.

Outmatch and Outlast is the tankiest option, normally during mapping we have 1 to 2 endurance charges from the odd kill we get this more consistently lets us hit 3 charges for phys reduction during mapping. However this does nothing for us during boss fights.

Blood in the Eyes is the highest dps option. We can grab ‘Supported by Chance to Bleed’ on our gloves to ensure we have maim on everything along with an additional source of blind.

Arena Challenger is the best of both giving us added defense while mapping, through Flesh and Stone, along with added movespeed and attack speed. Typically I sit around 3 charges in Sand Stance while mapping and 10 charges in Blood Stance while in a boss fight.


Uber Elder/Shaper
Major: Soul of the Brine King
Minor: Soul of Yugul

Major: Soul of Lunaris
Minor: Soul of Tukohama

Kill All


Folowed item gearing outlined in the guide:

Used Rain of Arrow as my main skill on a 4 link (Faster Attacks/ Poison/Lesser Poison) and HoA on a 4 to 6 link (depending on mana available) (Faster Attacks/Minion Damage/Feeding Frenzy/Maim/Damage on Full Life). Used a Silverbranch until lvl 35 when I upgraded it to a Silverbough (alternatively use a Quill Rain) until lvl 64 when I swapped to a 7l Vicious Projectiles Bow.

Elemental Equilibrium

This key node gives us an on-hit debuff that increases the enemies elemental resistance to the elemental damage done while decreasing their resistance to the other elemental damage types. For this build we use any form of added fire fire damage to attacks to lower the lightning and cold resistances. MAKE SURE YOU DON’T HAVE ANY ADDED COLD OR LIGHTNING DAMAGE. We use generosity connected to hatred to prevent us from gaining the physical as extra cold damage.

I get about 1/3 of my damage from this node, which is absolutely insane for 3 passive points.
Last edited by BlastingMouz on Oct 3, 2019, 7:08:55 PM
Last bumped on Oct 3, 2019, 6:31:22 PM
Gem Setup

Herald of Agony

This setup makes the most out of Elemental Equilibrium and Elemental Weakness, however the 5 off color setup makes the weapon nearly impossible to color using chromes on either a thicket or grove bow base. The process for getting these specific colors is the bow crafting guide.

Until you use a Vicious projectiles bow, use vicious projectiles over physical damage to lighting.

rain of Arrows (Gloves)

This is our sudo six link set up for applying curses and keeping virulence stacks up. This is our primary skill and lets us direct the attacks of our crawler. Alternatively, instead of Elemental Weakness you can use Frostbite (for increased cold damage), Enfeeble (for reducing enemy damage), Temporal Chains (for reducing the enemy speed), Lesser Poison (for maxing out poison chance), Additional Accuracy (so you don’t need to take Resolute Technique), or Culling Strike (for easier kills on bosses).

Make sure to keep Rain of Arrow at lvl 1 for the reduced mana cost and to prevent us from taking increased reflected phys damage.

Aura Setup (Chest)

This setup buffs up our crawler using Hatred for cold damage and dread banner for added accuracy and impale. Flesh and Stone is unaffected by generosity and wants the reduced reservation from enlighten so works well as the 5th link. This also lets use gain Challenger Stacks, reduce the damage of enemies, and/or maims our enemies.

Cast When Damage Taken (Helmet/Boots)

Pretty straight forward here, we stack armour and want more regen. Stone golem can be swap for any golem of your choosing. Vaal Molten shell isnt cast by CwDt but the normal molten shell will be. This makes vaal molten shell a get out of jail free button when we are in a pinch.

I prefer to keep my setup at CwDt (lvl 7), Summon Stone Golem (lvl 9), Vaal Molten Shell (lvl 13), and max out Increased Duration.

Loose Gems (Helmet/Boots)

Blink arrow can be swapped around for faster casting and flame dash if you prefer. I like having dash for boss fights and blink arrow to get up/down cliffs (but im not a huge fan of the skill since its bugged on ultra-wide screens). Convocation lets us reposition the crawler through doors and into proximity bubbles. Getting quality on this lowers the cooldown and keeping it at level 1 removes the mana cost with an elreon craft on a ring/amulet.

Auras and Curses

This is the primary way we scale the damage of the crawler by using curses to debuff the enemies to elemental/projectile damage and using aura’s to give our crawler cold damage and more attack speed.


• Projectile Weakness: Primary curse of the build which gives damage and pierce
• Elemental Weakness: Build does mostly lightning and cold damage so this gives us more damage

Alternatives to Elemental weakness (or good third curses):
• Temporal Chains: Slow enemies
• Frostbite: better damage than elemental weakness if your not using physical to lightning support
• Enfeeble: enemies do less damage


Primary Setup (enlighten)(no enlighten):
•Hatred (36%) (39%)
•Dread Banner (8%)
•Aspect of the Spider (20%)
•Herald of Agony (9%)
•Flesh and Stone (18%) (20%)
Requires sovereignty wheel, 1 1% mana corruption on one of the jewels, Conqueror's Efficiency, 5% reduced mana reserved on helmet, 39% (above 38% with an enlighten) Circle of Nostalgia, and 30% reduced mana reserved with Herald of Agony enchant on the helmet. For this setup i used a 5l chest pieces with generosity/hatred/Flesh and Stone/Dread Banner/enlighten. Since generosity on effects auras that “EFFECT YOU AND YOUR ALLIES” it does not apply to either Dread Banner or Flesh and Stone.

Another 35% aura:
•Vitality (for the life gained on hit watcher’s eye mod and more regen) (my preferred choice)
•Discipline (essentially a life buffer used with the ES gained on hot watcher’s eye) (imo why would you go for this we are life build?)
•Purity of Elements (addition phys mitigation with the watcher’s eye mods)
Requires same as above with Charisma anointed on your amulet along with an additional 1% reduced mana corrupted jewel. Swap to a six socket body armour with two 3l’s; connect generosity/hatred/flesh and stone in one 3l and enlighten/dread banner/vitality in the other.

Addtional 50% aura:
Requires an Aul’s Uprising with either Haste/Envy/Hatred. Swap dread banner to another piece of gear and add (if using haste) haste to enlighten setup.

My Gear and PoB

This is my endamge setup for the build

My Gear

Setting up Your POB Config

Get a realistic idea of damage during shaper/uber elder fights. Your going to be one shotting most enemies in t16 maps so there is no need to try and figure out your damage output against them.

Check the following:
Are your minions always on full life - This is for damage on full life support, since your crawler cannot take damage, this will activate the damage on the support
Challenger Charges - Your going to be at max charges during from blood stance
Have You been Hit Recently - Your going to take damage at some point
Enemy was Hit by Fire Damage - This shows up when you have Elemental Equilibrium on your tree. We are using added fire damage to debuff the enemies cold and lighting resistances
Is the Enemy a Boss: Shaper - This is for the shaper/uber elder. Who cares how much you overkill white mobs in a t1 map.
If you have Aspect of the Spider - Set to 3 stack. You take longer than 3 seconds to kill shaper so you’ll be at 3 stacks pretty quickly
Herald of Agony Virulence Stacks - I keep this at 40, but any number above 35 will give you an accurate understanding of your damage output. If you can’t keep your Virulence stack above 35, consider using a ‘The Golden Rule’ to double the rate at which you can apply poisons.
If you have a helmet with ‘Nearby Enemies have -9% lightning Resist’ - Set Enemy lightning resistance to -9

Crafting a 7l Vicious Projectiles Bow

1.) Buy the base -> ilvl 80 elder grove bow (lower dex requirement than thicket while having the same attack speed and being easier to color)

2.) Use Perfect fossils to get 25%+ quality (alternatively use hillock in fortification) this can also be done after coloring

3.) Coloring (since getting 5 off colors on a high dex item is hard, we use the crafting bench. See the gems section for alternative coloring setup) (video tutorial of this process on a chest: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zjDvO97CyWA)(expect this process to take ~1800 jewellers)
3.1.) Craft 3 sockets on the bow
3.2.)Use the 3 red craft (alternatively use Vorici in research to get 3 white sockets)
3.3.) Use the 4 socket craft (this preserves the first 3 sockets) , if you get a blue socket move on to the next step. Otherwise use the three socket craft to revert the 4th socket and repeat. Everytime a new socket is added to the item via the crafting bench there is a 10% chance the socket will be an off color.
3.3.) Use the 5 socket craft, if you get another blue socket go on to the next step. Otherwise use the 4 socket craft to revert the 5th socket and repeat until you get a blue socket.
3.5.) Use the 6 socket craft to a green socket. If you get unlucky and add a blue/red revert back to 5 sockets and craft 6 back on.

4.)Use the crafting bench to add 18% quality on to the bow

5.) Six link the bow

6.) Getting Vicious Projectiles
6.1.) Revert bow to a white item (using scour)
6.2.) Convert to a magic item (using a transmute)
6.3) Spam alterations until you get lvl 20 vicious projectiles
6.3.1) Use aug/regal whenever you get t1/t2 attack speed/elder attack speed/+1 to socketed gem to try and get both mods. If you get lvl 20 vicious projectiles and elder attack speed on a magic item. Use craicic chimeral to save the magic item before using a regal.
6.4) Use regal to convert to rare and use annulment orb to remove any excess mods. If you remove the vicious projectiles restart from step 6.1

7.) Getting ‘+1 to socketed gems’
7.1.) Craft ‘Cannot roll attack mods’ (part of the Pale Council prophecy quest line)
7.2.) Use a ‘Farric Wolf Alpha’ on the bow. Since bows only have one non-attack prefix, you will always get the ‘+1 to socketed gems’ mod
7.2.1.) Alternatively you can use an ex to slam the mod on or use a Vorici leo bench in research.

8.1.) Use the crafting bench to apply multiple crafted modifiers, attack speed, minion attack speed/cast speed, +2 to support gems (if you don’t have this buy veiled items with the catarina veiled mod on them)

End Product:

Last edited by BlastingMouz on Oct 3, 2019, 6:53:58 PM

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