[3.11] (Smite) Fire and Lightning Slayer

Not recommended anymore due to nerfs in 3.12

I am a big fan of melee builds and do like the variety of the options available for these kind of characters. Especially i prefer builds with generic elemental damage stacking since it allows to make use of almost any skill and ascendancy without being forced to stick to specific damage type/conversion.

I was hyped when the Abyss Jewels were first introduced to the game and a bit disappointed when it was so heavily nerfed. And then we got phys damage buff, so the melee elemental damage stacking one again become useful only with specific items like HOWA. I waited for a long time to have opportunity to play glorious generic elemental build once again...

And then the Cluster Jewels raised from the patch notes to make elemental damage staking great one again!

This build is made around new aura cluster jewels and Anger/Wrath combination.
The main idea is to stack flat elemental damage from auras rather than from weapon/attributes/jewels while still remain fairly tanky.

3.11: Chanelog

* Minor nerf to crits across the tree
* Huge nerf to leech cluster jewels. Can't leech Shaper beam anymore :(
* Enduring Cry dramatically buffed - added non Vaal Pact tree version
* Much harder to get attack cluster jewel with 3 notables - added elemental cluster jewel version

3.12: Chanelog

* Huge nerf to aura cluster jewels. Build still can handle all endgame content, but considering all recent nerfs it became obsolete and ineffective.


Pro's & Con's

+ Can do all content
+ Respectable single target and clear speed
+ Works with many other melee skills
+ Easy to scale gear

- Not beginner friendly
- Relies on Cluster Jewels
- Not the best single target and clear speed
- Have to get a ton of attributes from gear
- Min-maxing might be a bit expensive due to amount of jewels
- Can't do ele reflect and no leech maps

Stats and POB

Vaal Pact (standard):
* 7.3k HP
* 8kk (flasks/Vaal Ancrestral Warchief ON)
* 3.8kk (flasks/Vaal Ancrestral Warchief OFF)
* Tree: http://poeurl.com/cXCd
* POB: https://pastebin.com/F7S0PWYi

Build variations

Non Vaal Pact:
* 7.5k HP
* 8kk (flasks/Vaal Ancrestral Warchief ON)
* 3.8kk (flasks/Vaal Ancrestral Warchief OFF)
* Tree: http://poeurl.com/cXC
* POB: https://pastebin.com/ya6R0Fyc

Bane of Legends (not tested in game):
* 7.3k HP
* 9kk (flasks/Vaal Ancrestral Warchief ON, Bane of Legends included)
* 4.2kk (flasks/Vaal Ancrestral Warchief OFF, Bane of Legends included)
* Tree: http://poeurl.com/cXG9
* POB: https://pastebin.com/FcgrmuXn

What tree to choose?

Vaal Pact
+ Reliable strong leech all the time
- You have to leech in order to regen life. That makes some map mods pretty annoying.

Non Vaal Pact
+ Still pretty reliable life regen due to default leech and some life regen nodes from tree.
+ Enduring Cry: extremely strong (~25% per second) life regen with ~2 seconds cd. Easily beats Vaal Pact version when active.
- Unable to keep Enduring Cry active all the time

Bane of Legends
+ Higher overall damage
+ Can utilize Enduring Cry regen
- Unable to keep leech at max rate due to low attack speed
- Lack of stun and bleed immunity
- Lower attack speed

Other ascendancy (Non Vaal Pact)

* POB: https://pastebin.com/sUe6FCBd
* 7.5k HP
* 8.7kk (flasks/Vaal Ancrestral Warchief ON)

+ Higher overall damage (~10%)
+ More options for min-maxing with expensive gear
- Less overall defense (~10%)
- Peak DPS Depends on rage

* POB: https://pastebin.com/sWha8Vy8
* 7.3k HP
* 12kk (flasks/Vaal Ancrestral Warchief ON)

+ Higher overall damage (~50%)
- Less overall defense (~15%), 5% deregen
- 60% of the damage comes from rage
- Need higher level for optimized tree

Note that POB do not count Deal up to % more Melee Damage to Enemies, based on proximity mods from Close Combat gem and Impact notable.
You can check actual damage via Community POB version.

As you may speculate based on stats this build should be able to handle any endgame encounter, besides very deep delve.

Delirium league (3.10):
Simulacrum: complete
Shaper: complete
Uber elder: complete
A8 Sirus: complete


NOTE: Videos done with legacy leech cluster nodes that provided 40% increased maximum leech rate

Simulacrum (20) - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wGiC_7u_PWU
Veritania (A8) - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AZ7Dft9w3_I
Minotaur (T16) - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wM1tcBNOp38

Sirus (A8): Tried to facetank as much as possible (-54 chaos res) - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uBvuHhwQUAY


Why Smite?
Smite is all around good skill.
* Good damage
* Good clear speed
* Nice range for a melee skill
* Visual effects do not disturb too much
* Great synergy with Slayer
* Fits for fire and lightning theme

Any skills besides Smite?
You can effectively use any melee skill that do not rely heavily on physical damage (Ground Slam) or specific element type (Frost Blades).

AOE skills:
* Bladestorm
* Consecrated Path
* Perforate
* Ice Crash
* Cyclone

Strike skills:
* Wild Strike
* Lightning Strike
* Infernal Blow
* Molten Strike
* Static Strike

Why Slayer for elemental damage build?
In my option making build in POE is all about trade-off. For example you can take ring full of damage mods, but then you have to get more elemental resistance and life on other pieces of gear. If you take additional life on gear it means that you can sacrifice some life on tree and take juicy damage cluster.

And the Slayer allows you to minimize trade-offs due to:
* great starting position near the biggest life cluster and melee damage nodes
* easy access to two cluster jewel slots
* strong defensive and offensive ascendancy notables without any noticeable downsides

Why shield instead of dual wielding?
First of all for flat elemental damage builds dual wielding gives only 10% more attack speed and global mods from second weapon (25% crit multi with paradoxica). Sounds great? Yes, but no so great as it could be.
By using shield we get so much HP and resists that we can trade these on damage modifiers from tree and other gear and get even higher damage.
But dual wielding has better passive clusters, right? Not fully true. While using shield we have access to Command of Elements.

How to deal with mana reservation?

Following things should be enough:
* Alpha's Howl or Anger has 15% reduced Mana Reservation or Wrath has 15% reduced Mana Reservation enchantment
* Non-Channeling Skills have # to Total Mana Cost craft on one jewelry
* Enlighten 4

Other ways to deal with mana reservation:
* Add 1 or 2 more Non-Channeling Skills have # to Total Mana Cost crafts on jewelry and get Conqueror's Efficiency jewel
* Get amulet with Anger has % reduced Mana Reservation or Wrath has % reduced Mana Reservation mod
* Take Champion of Cause on the passive tree
* Anoint Sovereignty

How to deal with attributes?
To run this build we need at least 160 int, 212 dex and 100 str. Since we spend all points in str-dex area we are short on int. And this might be a big issue especially while leveling. So what can we do?

* Get rare amulet and rings with high int (2 x 40+) and dex (40+)
* Astramentis is great for leveling but might cost a lot depending on league stage
* Temporary spec into 30 attribute nodes that fortunately lies on our path (Proficiency, Hard Knocks, Wisdom of the Glade)


Headsman - Significant damage boost and allow us to run phys reflect maps.
Endless Hunger - Immune to stun always good
Brutal Fervour - One of the most powerful defensive notable in the game and historically signature notable of the Slayer.
Impact - in my opinion this is the best passive node in the game:
* 5% increased Area of Effect per Enemy killed recently, up to 50% - affects Smite secondary strike AOE and makes it realy huge!
* +2 to Melee Strike Range - Smite also counted as strike skill, bonus is not so noticeable but still.
* 50% increased Global Accuracy Rating - compensates missing accuracy on tree.
* Deal up to 15% more Melee Damage to Enemies, based on proximity - just another 15% more damage for hard encounters.


Bandits - Kill all
Major God - Lunaris. You can switch to Solaris for Sirus if need.
Minor God - Ryslatha. Capture Soul of Gorulis (Infested Valley Map) when have a chance. Helps us to survive situations when leech is not enough to handle incoming damage spikes. Also useful at labyrinth and Sirus due to Vaal Pact negative effect.


Since this builds relies on cluster jewels and requires to deal with major mana reservation it is better to level as generic phys build.

I recommend following ascendancy order for leveling (respec after completing uber lab):
Ascendancy order: Headsman -> Bane Of Legends -> Impact

24 points - First spec into starting Duelist points then move to Tribal Fury


Best generic starter gear (expensive at league start): Tabula, Goldrim, Redbeak, Wanderlust, Meginord's Girdle, Praxis

43 points

64 points

89 points - Start using crit setup

95-97 points - Add first cluster. Respec to elemental damage, change gems. (!)Do this only when you can afford at least one full cluster and sure that you can deal with mana reservation and attribute requirements.

My current Gear

Gear explanation and options

Since this build uses mostly rare gear there should not be any issues with maxing out resists and hp. Besides jewels, head and weapon you can use almost anything.


Hands down best weapon for elemental stacking, but not mandatory.
10c alternative with ~30 DPS less in total.


+ % to Level of Socketed Aura Gems and + % to Level of Socketed Aoe Gems mods adds a lot of damage for this build. +1 lvl to either Wrath or Anger is approximately 2.5% damage boost. So if you will be able to get +4 to Aoe/Aura on helmet it will be at least 20% more damage.

One of best helmet for the build even without +2 aura corruption. It provides significant damage boost for both Anger/Wrath and helps to deal with mana reservation issues.

Rare helmet with +2 to Level of Socketed Support Gems and +1 to Level of Socketed AoE Gems.
Less damage but better defense. You can either buy helmet with delve mod or craft one with Essence Of Delirium.

Fine crafted rare helmet with Anger has 15% reduced Mana Reservation or Wrath has 15% reduced Mana Reservation enchantment beats even corrupted Alpha's Howl. The only downside is losing freeze immunity.


Build enabling jewel and the only reason why this build works. In total we can stack up to 120% aura effect increase for both Anger and Wrath from Vengeful Commander. And that a lot of flat fire/lighting damage. It is pretty hard to roll both notables.
Cheap alternative that you can easily roll by yourself.
To make passive tree optimal it's better to get medium jewel with "Adds 4-5 Passive Skills" implicit.

Vengeful Commander - this is the build. Mandatory notable.
Precise Commander - second best notable on medium aura jewel for this build. Be aware this is very rare mod.
First Among equals - budget option. Easy to roll on a jewel, but not so strong. Quite good for leveling since duration mod also affects Vaal Haste gem.

Attack jewels with leech nodes are best for overleech. You do not need the perfect one to make is useful, but keep in mind that it's a bit hard to craft attack jewel with 3 notables nowadays. Consider to craft it with Serrated Fossil.
Feed the fury - best notable due to absurdly strong bonuses for overleech.
Fuel the Fight, Martial Prowess - both are great, first one help to cap accuracy, second one provides mana leech.

Elemental jewels are best if you play without overleech. Also easy to craft.
Vengeful Commander - same as on medium jewel
Prismatic Heart - best second elemental notable, good damage and 30 resistance in total

The same as for medium jewels: get large jewels with "Adds 8 Passive Skills" implicit for endgame.

Any Elder jewel with Wrath+Anger mods is strongly recommended.
Mods to look for:
* Damage Penetrates #% Fire Resistance while affected by Anger
* Damage Penetrates #% Lightning Resistance while affected by Wrath
* #% to Critical Strike Multiplier while affected by Anger
* #% increased Critical Strike Chance while affected by Wrath

Any jewel with life, crit multi and attack speed.

Abyss jewel with +200 to Accuracy will help to max out hit chance. Consider to get one with good Stygian belt at some point.


Due to low int and dex from passive tree we have to get these attributes from gear. And the best way to get it is an amulet with high base int, some dex and 20% attribute quality.
Spare prefix is great for % increased Damage while Leeching craft.
Mana reservations mods Anger has % reduced Mana Reservation and Wrath has % reduced Mana Reservation also extremely useful.

Astramentis is a great option for the start, since it allows you to completely forget about any issues with attributes. Although it definitely worse than good rare amulet.


Any rare rings that will help you to top resistance/damage/hp/attributes.
Curse Enemies with Level % Assassin's Mark on Hit whould be the best damage mod that you can get from ring slot.
Vermillion Ring with Fertile Catalyst - best ring base.


Base with high flat and (7-10)% increased maximum Life mod.

+2 to Level of Socketed Aura Gems - also might be useful if you use helmet without "+ level of gems" mods

Cheap alternatives


Since we are using strike skill, hunter gloves with Strike Skills target 1 additional nearby Enemy mod will be a great choice. Consider to get one with spare mod so you craft % increased Damage while Leeching or % increased Attack Speed.

Tombfist always a good choice for attack build. Lot of life and damage with good jewels, easy way to max accuracy (see jewel section).
1 socket version useful as budget option.

Good option for any Slayer with overleech. Negates downsides of Vaal Pact, a lot of int(!), saves one passive point (allow us to take additional jewel passive node).

Other gear


Boots with You have Tailwind if you have dealt a Critical Strike Recently are essentially best for any attack build.
If you use Alpha's Howl it's better to find boots with spare movement speed prefix in order to Crafted % increased Movement Speed, Cannot be Chilled mod.


Any belt with HP and Resists.
Belt with good base elemental resists and 20% quality usually the best way to max our elemental resistance in end game.
Highly recommended Stygian base.


Any body armour with HP and Resists.
Attacks have #% to Critical Strike Chance - best signature mod for chest.
Wite Socket can be quite useful to optimize gem setup for mapping.


Panicked Divine flask is the best you can get for life flask slot. Since we have immunity to bleed from Slayer notable for second flask mod is would be good to have of Curing or of Dousing or of Grounding.

BIS utility flasks

Best minor utility flasks.

Expensive utility flasks. You can replace one minor utility flask, or even two if you have Freeze/Chill immunity from gear.
note: Elemental Focus gem prevents you from igniting target on hit.


Main 6L: Smite + Close Combat + Multistrike + Elemental Focus + Elemental Damage With Attacks + Fortify - for single target

Main 6L: Smite + Close Combat + Multistrike + Elemental Focus + Ancestral call + Fortify - for mapping

Main 6L: Smite + Elemental Damage With Attacks + Multistrike + Elemental Focus + Ancestral call + Fortify - alternative for mapping if you can get white socket on body armor.

Movement: Leap Slam + Faster Attacks + Blood Magic

Movement: Dash + Second Wind - alternative movement skill setup

Aura: Wrath + Anger + Blood And Sand + Enlighten

CWDT 1: CWDT + Steelskin + Summon Chaos Golem + Increased Duration

CWDT 2: CWDT + Added Lightning Damage + Wave of Conviction 1-7 - to apply Lightning exposure. Also you can try to keep Added Lightning Damage at lvl ~15 in order to have a chance to apply Fire Exposure. Although i have not tested it yet i believe it should be possible to apply both Exposures with consequent trigger of CWDT.

Util: Enduring cry + Second Wind - free endurance charges and strong regen in you chose to play without Vaal Pact
Vaal Ancestral Warchief
Blood Rage

In case you have issues with accuracy: Precision lvl 1-5 + Blood Magic

AOE melee skills

For AOE skills you would want to use Pulverise instead of Ancestral Call. That means you do not need to make a gem swap and should consider to remove from gem setup either Close Combat or Elemental Focus

Awakened gems

Awakened Ancestral Call - First Awakened gem that you should get. Noticeably improves clear speed.
Awakened Elemental Focus and Awakened Elemental Damage With Attacks - Minor DPS improvement, both gems have same value.
Awakened Multistrike - If you have huge budget.


Sovereignty or Charisma - to resolve issues with mana reservation
Discipline and Training - best defense
Forces of Nature or Disemboweling - best offense
Forces of Nature or Disemboweling - best offense
Tribal Fury - best QOL and leveling

Last edited by GreenSubmarine on Sep 18, 2020, 8:08:15 AM
Last bumped on Oct 9, 2020, 9:15:18 AM

I'm gona respec my glad for your build, love smite and i'm happy to see a good build using it. Got a question, is the "strike skill hit an additionnal thing" on glove is mandatory? i have those glove what would be best?

Well i'm gona buy roll some cluster jewel now ^^

Fly safe
Tagmatar wrote:
Got a question, is the "strike skill hit an additionnal thing" on glove is mandatory? i have those glove what would be best?

"+1 to strike skills" mode is just some kind of generic quality of life feature that improves clear speed and makes some boss encounters a bit easier. It definitely can be replaced with any other good gloves.

Regarding to gloves that you mentioned. The only issue that you might face with this gloves is the curse limit. Since you will have to either abandon Assassin Mark or get "+1 to max curse" on gear/anoint.

Tagmatar wrote:
Well i'm gona buy roll some cluster jewel now ^^

Be aware that it's very hard to roll both Precise Commander and Vengeful Commander on a jewel. I believe it's cheaper just to buy it.
Last edited by GreenSubmarine on Apr 12, 2020, 1:38:50 PM
what about ice crash ?
panitkub wrote:
what about ice crash ?

Should work pretty well since it is also AOE melee skill.

The only things that you need to keep in mind:
* Ice crash adds Cold Damage. Exposures and Elder jewels with penetrations will be less effective, since it's almost impossible to get all 3 at once.
* It might be a bit hard to put in Brinkmanship AOE cluster without losing noticeable amount of damage/life. Although i am not sure that you will need this cluster, since Slayer ascendency already provides 60% increase.
* Ice crash adds Cold Damage. Exposures and Elder jewels with penetrations will be less effective, since it's almost impossible to get all 3 at once.

yeah it penetrations only fire and lightning i understand but can you explain "it's almost impossible to get all 3 at once"

wave of conviction also less effect

and i don't think we need brinkmanship at all just "impact" is enough in the other hand the good thing is we don't need gem swap just blood and sand

i also thinking about damage on full life and inspiration support what do you think ?
panitkub wrote:
it's almost impossible to get all 3 at once

Yeah, it sounds a bit confusing :) I meant that technically it is possible to apply fire, lightning and cold exposures at one enemy. But you definitely will not be able to do it during mapping or end game encounters.

panitkub wrote:
and i don't think we need brinkmanship at all just "impact" is enough in the other hand the good thing is we don't need gem swap just blood and sand

Agree, this is a good point. Also added Pulverize to gem setup.

panitkub wrote:

i also thinking about damage on full life and inspiration support what do you think ?

Damage on full life - should work well, due to high leech it's possible to be at full hp 95% of the time. I also considered to use it, but didn't had a chance to test it yet. Although personally i am not a big fan of this gem, since it might let you down when you need damage the most.

Inspiration support - also should work well. Cons of this gems are: 1) Arguably lower damage than other gems. You can replace Elemental Focus and try to apply some elemental alignments, but it might be not very reliable due to split damage. 2) It takes some time to regain charges when using multi strike (1 use of multistrike counts as 1 skill use)
Last edited by GreenSubmarine on Apr 13, 2020, 1:11:31 PM
Thank you ! for you answer i am leveling right now this build catch me at first sight !
Leveling this build aswell. I always wanted to try some smite build and this looks promising
Looks like helmet crafted with Essence Of Delirium might be a better choice than corrupted Alpha's Howl. Although will have to deal with freeze.
Last edited by GreenSubmarine on Apr 17, 2020, 5:00:56 PM

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