[3.12] Aziire's Splitting Steel Champion - Impale Explosions! | League Starter
Path of Building Link (Updated 22/09/20)
Video Build Guide
How to Level with Splitting Steel
End Game with Splitting Steel
Levelling Cheat Sheet:
Build Changes & Important Info:
Hey guys. Making a blurb like description here going over the basics of the build and how to get it to perform. The League Start has been rough for us Steel boys but thankfully all the bugs have been fixed. I'm not going to lie this has been a difficult League Starting Character. As a skill Splitting Steel has been awkward at a lot of stages, most notably while levelling through Acts 4 & 5. Thanks to the struggle though we have narrowed down what needs changing (huge shout out to all the boys in Twitch Chat, you all struggled alongside me hahaha).
First off Splitting Steel just won't perform well with Single Target regardless. Thankfully we have Lancing Steel as our lord and saviour. On a 4 Link this can take down most map bosses relatively quickly and even conquerors when you quickly swap with Splitting.
Secondly, and one of the most important, is to be aware that this skill is an incredibly active play style. When League Starting I thought it would be a relaxing and simple character but I was dead wrong. Call of Steel needs very active management, and without it you are punching air. It is a huge chunk of our clearing ability so playing around it a lot is important. Grabbing a Lord of Steel with very high use speed is essential and makes the gameplay far smoother.
Lastly is that the skill is very gear dependant. Once again I am sorry for any misleading claims, I didn't realise it would be so reliant on items. Systematically upgrading your items with damage and life is essential. You can do this fairly methodically though as you progress through the Atlas so your gear is always relevant to what you are doing. Heist is great for Chaos Recipe so make sure to take use of that as it will help you budget and work towards upgrades.
Once again, I am sorry if the skill has felt awful. The last thing I want is to waste peoples time. It is the risk I took when making a build guide for a new skill. Much love to everyone who has stuck with it and persevered alongside me. I am still streaming daily so feel free to come slam me with some banter.
For the Path of Building I use the Community Fork. It is exactly the same as PoB but better, and very easy to install. Link here.
If you have any questions jump into the stream and hit me up. I will be streaming daily and it's incredibly easy to answer questions.
Splitting bodies and heads :D! 3.12 is bringing us into the life of a thief in the new Heist League. Among the new things we have been blessed with some awesome new skills and reworks. Splitting Steel is a new Steel skill that has been released and damn this thing comes full with quality of life. Built in Impales, explosions and a pseudo-chain makes this an incredibly enticing League Starter.
For scaling and building this bad boy we will be rocking the Impale king himself the Duelist using the Champion Ascendancy. Due to the nature of Impale we will be scaling 100% Physical Damage and loading up on many defensive layers in order to keep us fresh in these Heist encounters.
If you want to see the build in action check me out live on Twitch, or if you prefer video build guides over written then the best place to do so is on my YouTube links above/below (my one moment to sell out). I also check this forum daily so if you have any questions, build related or not, just leave a reply and I'll respond fairly quickly (hopefully, sometimes I'm slackin). If you are big brain, 500 iq, and find someway to improve the build let me know, I'm not perfect :D.
- No Cluster Jewels or any gear we hard rely on so perfect to League Start
- Splitting Steel has amazing clear potential with its explosions + chain
- Very clear upgrade path and goals keeps it simple
- Easy maps with Phys Reflect + No Leech being the only scary thing
- New skill so could end up dead on arrival
- Single target potential is low, a little like Frost Blades
- Point starved and quite a lot of travelling on the Passive Tree
- I ignore life passives because I'm softcore and greedy af
- Perma Intimidate, Taunt, Taunted Enemies can't Evade, 100% Impale
- Only 'real' source of Adrenaline which is fun to play with
- Clear looking to be mega zoom zoom thanks to the Split mechanic
- 100% Physical Damage, with almost 400% Crit Multi and a fat amount of Crit Chance
- 5,000 hp when being greedy, with very easy access for 6,000+ hp
- 50% Evade Chance, 65% Physical Damage Reduction, 50%+ Block Chance
- Enduring Cry provides huge life regen and barely got nerfed
- Recover 25% life when we hit low life + removes all Ailments
I've designed the build around Level 90, as that's what I aim for as a Build Guide Standard. Feel free to substitute out any damage for the extra Life that I grab in the Level 100 Tree (I'm just being greedy for dps). If you are following the tree in Path of Building, then you can simply go to the bottom left to switch to the levelling trees I have created. I don't have a Cluster Jewel Tree as I'm not personally a huge fan and it isn't great for League Start. It feels like shit not being able to use passives as you just hold out for the perfect Cluster.
Alira is our Bandit of choice. The Crit Multiplier and Elemental Resistance makes building far easier. It's also just great DPS. Eramir is also always a solid choice especially considering how much travel there is on our tree.
Level 21 Tree: Click Here | Progressing through Act 2 | Help Alira
Level 34 Tree: Click Here | Up to Dominus
Level 45 Tree: Click Here | Up to Act 5 Kitava | Should have your first 2 Ascendancy Points
Level 63 Tree: Click Here | Up to Blood Aqueducts | Should have 4 Ascendancy Points
Level 75 Tree: Click Here | Up to Maps | Should have 6 Ascendancy Points
Level 90 Tree: Click Here | End Game | Core Build Done, Should have 8 Ascendancy Points.
Level 100 Tree: Click Here | Luxury Tree | Almost like 40% Life compared to Level 90
TLDR: Master of Metal > First to Strike, Last to Fall > Conqueror > Worthy Foe
Splitting Steel is a fairly simple skill when it comes down to its scaling. You either hard commit to the Impale or do some wild elemental conversion and don't dabble into Impale at all. To make things easy I am going with the Champion Ascendancy. My mans is just loaded with offense and defense bonuses giving us a reliable League Starter. Deadeye would be another awesome Ascendancy as you can get 100% Impale chance with Splitting Steel + Impale Support alone. This leaves plenty of room for things like chain and tailwind shenanigans for mapping.
Master of Metal gives us a 20% chance to Impale Enemies on Hit with Attacks. Impales you inflict last 2 additional Hits. If you've Impaled an Enemy Recently you and nearby Allies have +1,000 to Armour. You and nearby Allies deal 6 to 12 added Physical Damage for each Impale on Enemy.
Due to Splitting Steel having Impale built into it grabbing this first is a must. We gain a lot of extra Physical Damage thanks to our Impale stacks as well as a huge amount of Armour. This Ascendancy point will hard carry us through the Acts where we don't quite have the greatest gear.
First to Strike, Last to Fall grants Your Hits to permanently Intimidate Enemies that are on Full Life. Gain Adrenaline for 20 seconds when you reach Low Life if you do not have Adrenaline. Recover 25% of Life when you gain Adrenaline. Remove all Ailments and Burning when you gain Adrenaline.
This is an awesome second one to pick up as it bolsters our ability to not die. We already have quite a lot of armour thanks to Master of Metal however if we do get hit hard and reach Low Life we are blessed with Adrenaline and a 25% Life gain. Also a nice little damage boost with Intimidate.
Conqueror gives us 100% chance to Taunt on Hit. 6% reduced Damage taken if you've Taunted an Enemy Recently. Regenerate 2% of Life per second if you've Taunted an Enemy Recently. Enemies Taunted by you deal 10% less Damage with Hits and Ailments against other targets.
While Taunt might seem scary at first because they will agro us it is actually beneficial thanks to this point. The enemies do less damage while we also get reduced damage from the passive. Otherwise this is also kind of just a pathing point.
Worthy Foe has two simple passives. Enemies Taunted by you take 20% increased Damage and Enemies taunted by you cannot Evade Attacks.
Enemies being unable to evade is good shit as it removes one of a few defensive layers which monsters have. 20% increased damage taken is also nothing to scoff at.
These final two passives aren't exactly insane and could easily be replaced by Unstoppable Hero and Fortitude. This gives us quite a lot more defense and only marginally more DPS. Both are decent options and I will probably test the usefulness of both shortly after League Start.
TLDR: Purity of Flesh
Always make sure you are getting a non-corrupted Amulet so that you can Anoint passives, as they are a huge dps / defense boost (and so you can Quality them). In order from best to worst here are some offensive Anointment's you should be looking at putting on an Amulet:
Assassination | Black Oil + Opalescent Oil + Golden Oil
True Strike | Teal Oil + Crimson Oil + Black Oil
Throatseeker | Amber Oil + Violet Oil + Opalescent Oil
I am usually a thot for dps however we are pretty low on Life before Level 90+ so I opted for defense this time. Great defense passives to anoint are:
Purity of Flesh | Clear Oil + Black Oil + Silver Oil
Discipline and Training | Black Oil + Silver Oil + Silver Oil
For your Major God you want to either choose Soul of Lunaris or Soul of Solaris. These are both super solid options and just depends on whether you want to be mapping or bossing more. If you think you won't fuck with bosses then take Lunaris, otherwise take Solaris. I personally use Lunaris as it helps when suicide running into packs like a lunatic, which I do frequently.
For your Minor God your best bet is Soul of Shakari. Reduced chaos damage is a nice quality of life, especially once upgraded as you are then Immune to Poison.
These are your standards and I never really choose anything else.
Splitting Steel is a new low level Steel skill that uses the new Shard mechanic as well as Split. This skill is pretty unique as it just has a whole lot packed into it while also being a fresh way to play the game. You launch a projectile at an enemy and it then explodes into many projectiles that seek out other enemies. Every hit cause a small explosion. I'll list the Gems in order of priority, with brief explanations in boxes below them. A side note for Awakened Gems. I have them listed but these are not mandatory and are purely for squeezing out bonus damage. I almost always play without these.
Splitting Steel > Impale > Awakened Brutality > Awakened Greater Multiple Projectiles > Awakened Vicious Projectiles > Maim
Splitting Steel is a low level skill so we should be able to rock it from as early as Act 2 (hopefully). All Steel skills now come with a secondary skill called Call of Steel. This is a crucial skill to use as it explodes the Impales on our enemies which provides a great deal of clear.
For bosses we can remove Greater Multiple Projectiles as the projectiles split and provide no benefit to us. Instead we could use something like Slower Projectiles. This is only really necessary for something like Sirus.
Pride > Flesh and Stone > War Banner > Enlighten
Pride is the stock standard Physical Aura for a reason, it is incredibly strong. Flesh and Stone provides some of the best defense in the game with it's Blind in Sand Stance. Always map in Sand Stance and only consider switching for Bosses. Either of the banner skills are great however our Impale chance is already 100% so War Banner edges out Dread Banner due to its %Increased Physical.
Before you get an Enlighten avoid using War Banner as you will not be able to manage the mana cost.
Enduring Cry > Second Wind > Precision Lvl 1
Enduring Cry got nerfed but it really is a slap on the wrist. Slap on Second Wind and you are as good as gold. Either chuck it on LMB or activate it manually when you need the insane heals.
Keep Precision Level 1 as as it will take up too much Mana otherwise. It's benefit for the initial 22 Mana cost is 100% worth slotting it in.
Cast When Damage Taken Lvl 13 > Immortal Call Lvl 15 > Increased Duration
I suggest keeping these at the Level I listed so that they trigger more reliably but it is up to you. One important note is that we ideally want this socketed in The Saviour when we get it as the Increased Duration will apply to the Reflection skill (Side note, we are unsure as to how Reflection works with the Shards from Call of Steel so avoid purchasing this for now).
Whirling Blades > Faster Attacks > Blood Magic > Fortify
As always this is personal preference. A lot of people prefer Leap Slam and it is probably the superior skill. I am just a sucker for Whirling Blades. Fortify is perfect to slot in here for some free damage reduction at no real loss to us.
Lancing Steel > Impale > Awakened Brutality > Awakened Greater Multiple Projectiles
Splitting Steel has really awful Single Target dps so we instead have a handy Lancing Steel 4 Link to deal with your general Map Bosses and juiced rare mobs. A very similar setup to Splitting however we can't use Greater Volley as for some reason it does not work. We instead opt for Greater Multiple Projectiles. Using extra projectiles on a Single Target might seem crazy however Lancing fires sequentially and can hit a single enemy with each projectile. This is multiplied by the amount of Shards you consume which can result in a very comfortable 20+ projectiles being launched at our enemy.
We are actually a little blessed with gear in that we don't have a single piece of gear that you 100% need. We do however need to incrementally upgrade often due to our skills being fairly reliant on solid damage and survival. As with all builds there are some pieces that are just far nicer and provide a great quality of life. In the PoB I do have a Giga Rich Item Set for those that have an absolute stonkers budget.
For all the gear options I will embed a Path of Exile Trade link so that you don't have to go search yourself and you can instead just open the link for what you need. These are set to search in Standard Temp Leagues so if you are playing in a different League then change it in the top right. Using these when searching for Rares can be confusing at first as I use a lot of filters to find cheap but good gear. Read the section carefully and hopefully I have explained it well enough for people to find what they are after. Please respond to the forum if you have found anything confusing at all and I can explain in further detail.
For our first weapon we want a nice Rare One Handed Sword. The link is filtered so we only find Foil's as they come with Crit Multi built in. If you can't afford one early on lower the Physical DPS requirement until you can afford it. For the mega rich a Paradoxica with %Increased Physical will be the best damage option.
For the second sword you can either opt for another one similar to above (which will be the option at the start) or you can shell out a little bit of mulla and grab yourself The Saviour. This sword is insanely fun to play with as it creates a Reflection that also uses your skill. Double the Steel Projectiles flying around the map. Once again though a normal sword will do just fine The Saviour hasn't actually been tested with the new Shard mechanic with it's Reflections so this could actually be an awful option. Please don't purchase this until you are very aware of what you are doing as it is currently a mystery. Just opt for another basic sword with High Phys Damage.
When entering maps we want to grab a Helmet that helps get us up and running. A nice Rare Helmet will cover all our resistances for the get go while also providing us life. After you are comfortably in maps look to be upgrading to a Crown of the Inward Eye. This puppy can give out more than 300 Max Life on it's own while also being a great source of dps. Transfiguration of Body causes our Increases and Reductions to Maximum Life to apply to our Attack Damage at 30%. By end game this is huge.
For the chest piece we want to either grab a Yriel's Fostering or a Daresso's Defiance. When buying a Yriel's make sure to either grab the Physical Damage variant or the Attack Speed. Phys is the better option however Attack Speed is a close second in terms of damage so consider your budget when making this purchase. Yriel's is better for damage however the minion can be annoying to summon often where as Daresso's doesn't quite provide the same damage but makes up for it in quality of life with Endurance Charges and Onslaught Effect. Use a Tabula or whatever you pick up until this point. Double Influence Explode + Crit Chance for those that are Tony Stark rich.
Rare Gloves with Resistance and Max Life are what we are after. To find better ones just click Sum and then scroll to find something affordable. Remember that defense always comes first. If you click the Show Filters portion at the top you can turn off the Weighted Sum search option which will keep the search strictly defense.
Just like above we keep it simple for the boots and go for Rare Boots. I personally just search for 25% Movement Speed and higher as it is much cheaper. Same deal though Resistances and Max Life. You want to squeeze in as much Resistance as possible here, ideally 120% or more. Influenced Boots as the Mirror Tier option with either Elusive or Hybrid Life as the final mod.
Because we have gone so hard on resistances above we can go greedy shopping for our Jewellery. A Rare Amulet with Maximum Life and Intelligence is what we are after. In order to support an Enlighten Level 3 we need to get at least 39 Intelligence. When first entering maps hide this option in the Trade Search so you have more options. Otherwise simply sort by Sum to find the best damage that you can afford.
For our rings we can thot out for some dps again. Rare Rings are the way to go. You will probably need to pick up a Resistance on one of these so make sure to grab whichever one you are lacking. Max Life > Resistance > Damage. Very end game we want to rock a Curse on Hit Ring with Assassin's Mark on Hit. The nerf to it was negligible and is far superior for single target compared to its prior versions.
Last off for our main gear is the belt. A Rare Belt with a lot of Max Hp and Resistances. Getting a lot of resistances here is fairly important as it helps us upgrade our Helmet later on. I personally opt for a Leather Belt so that you can comfortably get 100+ Max Hp. For the mega rich go for a well rolled Ryslatha's Coil. Getting the best rolls on both the More and Less Phys modifiers is important for when you boost it with Attack Modifiers (Catalysts). Managing your resistances while having one of these is difficult but a perfect one is something like a 20% DPS Increase so its great for those that have a bigger budget. Another alternative that gets the best of both worlds would be a Stygian Vise as it grants an Abyssal Socket and covers the Resistances.
Lord of Steel[/b] is a must grab for one of your Jewel slots. The Call of Steel skill feels really awful without it and this helps boost it's use time and provides such a huge quality of life. Rare Life Jewels are a great way to provide us with more life and damage. If you are a cheapskate like me add Resistances onto your Jewels. It usually doesn't increase the price that much as it has less damage rolls, and I usually can't afford the big juicer damage ones anyway. Watcher's Eye with additional Impales while using Pride is the best for maximum damage. If you are struggling with Mana management, especially when fighting Conquerors and Sirus, then consider grabbing a Replica Conqueror's Efficiency[/b]. This lowers our mana cost and allows us to comfortably leech back enough from a single enemy.
For our pots we want to grab a Quicksilver Flask of Adrenaline, Diamond Flask of Heat and Seething Divine Life Flask of Staunching. In this build we really don't have use for any Unique pots so I opt for rolling a Silver Flask of Acceleration and a Jade Flask of Reflexes. The Jade Flask is a huge defense bonus and not to be slept on. Naturally Bottled Faith will replace our Onslaught pot however I really don't think it's worth getting this unless you are min-maxed out of your mind.
The Gear I'm Currently Using:
Thank you for reading/following the build guide. Feel free to leave any questions/comments in the replies as I make sure to spend an hour every day responding to people. Also if you have made it this far, feel free to support me by Subscribing to my YouTube or Twitch. Viewership helps me a lot, especially as someone who pours a lot of time into these guides. Have Fun in Heist :)
Last edited by AziiRe on Oct 2, 2020, 10:28:47 PM
Last bumped on Dec 28, 2020, 11:51:49 PM
Actually you can use Splitting Steel instantly from the start as you receive it after killing Hillock. Looking forward to start with this skill and probably if I'll have any questions or suggestions gonna reply here.
Splitting Steel is now offered to the Duelist and Scion for completing Enemy at the Gate, and can be purchased from Nessa by the Ranger.
Also, Soul of Shakari no longer makes you immune to poison.
50% less Duration of Poisons on You
You cannot be Poisoned while there are at least 5 Poisons on you
Last edited by Habbibal33 on Sep 17, 2020, 8:08:38 AM
on Sep 17, 2020, 7:02:39 AM
What do you think is better, 20% impale effect or 15% for additional impale stack (alternative quality of gems)?
on Sep 17, 2020, 7:59:56 AM
I'm not sure Champion is going to work as an ascendancy. From Call of Steel - "It lets you detonate all impales on enemies in a very large range, causing them to deal their stored impale damage in a small area around them. This includes any dead enemies whose corpses are impaled. "
To me this detonation implies that the impale stacks are removed, also removing the benefits of Master of Metal. I could be wrong, but I think we'll be needing to be hitting Call of Steel fairly often to keep up with Shard generation.
on Sep 17, 2020, 9:50:37 AM
I think detonation only will work on packs, so, for solo fights like Sirus you will need impale stacks for better damage output.
on Sep 17, 2020, 10:13:25 AM
You'll still need to press Call of Steel on single target to generate shards, which (I think) will remove any impales on the target. So if you have a boss with impale stacks on them and run out of steel shards, you have to press call of steel, gaining you steel shards but also removing any impales against the boss. It removes Master of Metal's bonuses since the enemy is no longer impaled.
It might not matter since you'll just be stacking impales again immediately after but removing impales is definitely losing value from champion (assuming that's what Call of Steel does, since no one knows yet). Might be better as glad to get challenger charges and all the block stuff or just as a slayer.
on Sep 17, 2020, 10:42:00 AM
I think the fraction of a second you'll have from popping call of steel and putting new impale stacks on will be a negligible amount of dps loss at best.
Awesome I didn't quite pick up on that myself, glad I can level straight off the bat with it.
Default quality will probably be better for us. If the Alternate was lasts an additional hit that would be insane but we have 100% Impale chance already so we got no problem stacking them all.
This is a really good point. It doesn't take long for our Impales to hit max stacks though. Even if we detonate them with Call of Steel we have max Impales again in just over a second. Detonating Call of Steel isn't a bad option as we gain a lot of benefits from the shards.
For mapping we can probably just not detonate. At least from my initial read it seems like even without detonating Call of Steel we will generate shards passively with it. It's just kind of another case where we don't know how far 'nearby' is. Our explosions built Splitting Steel will work just fine for the most part.
Gladiator and Deadeye would be my next choices as Ascendancy and I'm sure they will work great with the skill as well. You have 100% Impale chance from Splitting Steel and Impale Support alone meaning you don't need to invest into any Impale points. Challengers charges would be awesome and the bonus block would go well with our already 50% block chance. Deadeye for chain and projectiles memes.
Great guide. Can't wait to give it a go!