[3.17] Lightning Strike Slayer Starter that clears the entire game
MAJOR 3.17 CHANGES
Due to changes with Hydrosphere, this build will change from FrostBlades to Lightning Strike.
3.17 discussion starts on page 20, If you have any questions check if they have already been answered.
Are you tired of builds that claim to be "budget" or "starter" that cost 50ex? Or how about builds that claim they have 3mil dps, but then you notice they ticked every box in PoB and in reality their dps is 600k?
I am and that is why I wrote this build
This is a starter build with great clear and great single target due to the chosen damage mechanics. And all it requires is 2x 3chaos unique swords and optionally 3c unique gloves "Oskarm"
In addition, it was relatively unaffected by the 3.15 nerfs when compared to other builds - It lost about 25% of its total damage when including flasks.
3.17 Updates - READ THIS
TLDR - Damage lowered slightly, no major changes other than the skillgem change
Changes that make the build better -
Assassins mark on hit moved to skillgem - This doesn't lock you into an extremely expensive shaper ring anymore
Changes that make the build worse -
Slightly nerfed damage from Added damage gems.
The idea of this build is to combine Ichimonji with the slayer ascendancy. Ichimonjis are a weapon with a high dps and a very high attack speed which makes them clear maps very fast. In addition they add aura effect AND reservation which allows this build to reserve an additional aura.
The downside of Ichimonji is that it has a very low crit chance, which is why this build uses the Slayer ascendancy to counteract that.
In addition to this, after Hydrosphere nerfs Lightning Strike became the only strike skill that can still shotgun - Stand just a little bit further from the boss than your attack range and attack and you will hit the boss with projectiles and the extra attack from Tribal fury will hit the boss with the melee hit.
This means you can get an extra 70% more damage.
Why play this build?
The build is cheap and capable of all content
Upgraded versions have plenty of defense
Fast and fun playstyle
Not so great things -
Not for facetanking
Lightning strike beams get stopped by terrain so it can feel bad at times
General changes to all build versions:
1)I decided to go into multiple totems and annoint Panopticon since the only place you really need the big damage is on bosses. This allows me to turn on both Warchief and Protector.
2)Build now uses Trinity support. Make sure you buy items that actually allow you to gain all resonances or else it's a wasted link.
The damage numbers that I write next to the build version are calculated by adding the melee hit to the ranged hit because you can do that with lightning strike.
Vaal lightning strike can shotgun the same way normal lightning strike does and it has 2 charges, so it is possible to deal 150% more damage for a period of 6 seconds. If You are dealing with a boss that moves around just attach vaal lightning strike to it - it will deal less damage but always hit.
The PoB is set up so that it displays the damage available to you when you enter Sirus fight - This means no Berserk, Vaal Ancestral Warchief or conditonal passives.
Starter version - 3.4m DPS + Vaal lightning strike burst.
Everything up to Sirus doable deathless
10-boss invitations doable deathless if no crazy mods rolled on them
Uber elder doable but not deathless
Maven might be doable, depends on how good you play
Maven special invitations not reccommended on this gear level.
Since this is starter version it doesn't go ultra hard into defenses - 56% block and around 20-30k armor during flask depending on what items you can get + Molten shell should be enough to keep you safe while doing early content.
Even though Mark on hit was introduced, I reccommend sticking with Oskarm in the starter version of the build
First upgrades - 9m DPS + Vaal lightning strike burst.
Uber elder doable deathless
Maven doable, deathless if you survive last memory game phase
Maven special invitations doable(other than feared), deathless if no crazy mods on them.
The feared most probably not doable.
Upgraded version has more investment into defenses - block, 50k armor, 82% max res and crit immunity from Brass dome.
Gear choices -
If you want to go more into damage, drop Brass Dome for a +Crit rare Chest.
This version uses the new Crystallised Omniscience amulet - It is unknown how expensive this will be, but it probably won't be in the ultra expensive item tier. Keep in mind that when using this amulet you have to buy rares with stats to statisfy the gear requirements.
This amulet is VERY good and it is worth spending currency on items with attributes to make it work.
However if you just can't find correct gear for it or it is just too expensive, drop it for a rare amulet.
You can choose to run assassins mark without lifetap if you use a level 1 gem - decide if having faster attacks on leap slam is worth the slightly lowered damage from lower assassins mark - In my opinion it is.
Final upgrades - 29m DPS + Vaal lightning strike burst.
All content in the game other than Simulacrum doable deathless.
Final version of this build with no cluster jewels.
This can probably be made a lot better with optimization.
This version only upgrades the damage, the defenses stay the same as they were in the normal upgraded version.
Overall the defenses should still be enough to not be dying during mapping - 82% max res helps with Replica abyssus, Block and 50k armour helps against physical damage and Molten shell can give extra 10k hitpoints.
Videos show Frostblades since that used to be the skill of this build.
I am keeping them around because the lightning strike version will have similar playstyle and higher damage than Frostblades so you can still see what you can expect from the build.
Videos will be changed to Lightning Strike once I play this build
Tier 16 Map on a 5-link and 10c worth of items.
Oskarm cost 2c, every other item used here cost 1c.
Here are some videos on how this build performs with upgraded gear.
Tier16 Beyond with Beyond atlas nodes
Videos with very expensive gear
Maven invitation - Elder guardians
Maven invitation - Shaper guardians
Maven invitation - Breachlords
Maven invitation - Feared
Here are videos from Older leagues
3.10 Delirium -
Early Awakener level 1 Hunter with weak gear
Early T12 map clear with weak gear
A6 Baran with bad gear
Juiced T16 map with medium upgraded gear
Entire Shaper encounter
Tier15 Map Bad Gear
Videos with better gear:
Shaper Guradian Hydra
Shaper Guradian Chimera
Shaper Guradian Minotaur
Shaper Guradian Phoenix with Metamorph
Important Uniques overview
Will be updated soon
Aura setup changes depending on gear level - Use PoB to see what auras to run.
Lightning Strike - Trinity - Multistrike - Inspiration - Added cold damage - Rage
Leap Slam - Faster Attacks - Lifetap - Endurance charge on stun
Generic movement setup. If you want to you can use whirling blades instead. Whirling blades is faster, has lower cast point and has lower backswing. This means it's easier for you to dodge attacks and deal damage. However it can't go over gaps, so it's up to you to choose which one you prefer.
Movement setup later changes to:
Leap Slam - Lifetap - Mark on hit - Assassins mark
Berserk, Blood Rage, Ancestral protector, Vaal Ancestral warchief, War Banner(if you use it)
AWAKENED GEM PRIORITY
Awakened added cold damage - This is a fairly cheap awakened gem and gives you a pretty big increase in damage. This should be the first you get.
Awakened elemental damage with attacks - The damage increase isn't a big deal but at level 5 it gives you reflection immunity. Should be the second gem you get
Awakened multistrike - An OK damage increase, around 10% compared to Anomalous Multistrike. It is however extremely expensive so it should be the last upgrade in your build.
1 - Bane of legends
2 - Headsman
The best flat damage nodes for early game
3 - Overwhelm
4 - Brutal fervor
Once you get geared up and have access to skillpoints Crit becomes important so take Overwhel.
Lastly take Brutal fervor for the permaleech.
When you start a league you should mule an "Added cold damage" gem. This can be done with Shadow, Witch or Scion
Your gem progression should be like this:
1)Frost blades - Ruthless - Ancestral call
2)Frost blades - Added cold damage - Ancestral call
At level 12 switch to Lightning strike -
Lightning Strike - Added lightning damage - Ancestral call
Keep the Added cold damage and level it because you will use it later.
When getting a 4 link add "Elemental damage with attack skills" in there.
Rage is good, but early on there isn't enough monster density to keep up high rage, but buy the gem and level it. In act5 you can switch out elemental damage with Rage.
If you can find a 5 link during acts it should be:
Lightning Strike - Added lightning damage - Ancestral call - Rage - Elemental damage with attacks
After acts you get Tribal fury and you start using Trinity support, so your setup changes a lot.
For 5 links use:
Lightning strike - Trinity - Added cold damage - Rage - Multistrike
And when you finally get a 6 link add in Inspiration.
The reason you don't put Multistrike in early is simple - Before maps you don't have a lot of flat damage, if you slot in multistrike, you will probably need to attack each pack twice. With pure damage gems, you can jump from pack to pack using Frostblades only once per pack.
Also always keep in mind that you need to actually be able to trigger Trinity so keep an eye out on your damage tooltip and choose the correct added damage mods/crafts as well as Abyss jewels that help you use Trinity.
For Auras and Damage boost gems, just slot them in when you find them. During acts Wrath and Added lightning damage are probably better, but after the acts we switch to Hatred, so get one and level it.
Rest of the gems you can buy when get to maps and have enough currency to get sockets, links and to recolor them.
Weapon progression -
Use axes instead of swords until you reach maps. Axes have higher damage, and there are plenty of generic damage or life nodes to take. When you get to maps(or around level 60 or so) you can buy unique swords(Ichimonjis if you found all the chaos neccessary, or Scaeva/Prismatic eclipse if you only have a little bit of currency).
Remember the phys damage recipe - Rare rustic sash, weapon, and Blacksmiths wheatstone. Use this every 2-3 acts on the higher level weapon base.
Skill tree progression -
One of the first things you should do is path over to mana and life leech and take all mana leech nodes so you don't have to use mana flask. After that there are no requirements - Just prioritize attack speed and damage nodes over Crit nodes because in the beginning you don't have any crit. Since you go through the campaign with axes, feel free to grab some axe nodes.
When you get to maps and buy Ichimonjis, respec all the nodes that aren't in the PoB.
Last edited by TeL_ on Feb 6, 2022, 12:02:04 PM
Last bumped on Jul 4, 2022, 1:00:35 AM
Nice man. Really looking to play frostblades this season. Just not sure if I want to duel wield or the 2handed variant, thanks :)
Thanks, I looked at the 2h version and honestly the damage output was insane. However I believe my build will outperform that one as a starter or in general as a build that doesn't have seemingly infinite currency. You can't go wrong with either though, as that one was also really strong.
That low cost, I just dont have the time that I used to. Also seemingly the drop luck lmao. Im going to use yours as a starter for sure and maybe try a new skill down the line :D
Appreciate your time with this guide good luck in the season
Last edited by thehitt on Jul 22, 2021, 5:10:02 PM
After looking thru so many starter builds, i guess this is the one for me. It looks damn good and I have never try frostblades before. Anyway to reach you if i have any questions/problems?
Where did you capture your "cheap gear" pastebin? Start of maps or comfortably clearing T16s?
How does your mana sustain work? 66 unreserved in the cheap gear pastebin, 34 for frostblades, 9.73 attacks per second. Is it that single mana leach passive that keeps you afloat? Is this forgiving of mistakes? I can see a bad leap slam leaving (54/66 available mana) you without enough mana to move again or attack which would be dead in the water, right?
on Jul 23, 2021, 12:53:24 AM
You can post a question here if you have any, I will probably see it within a couple days or so, at least in the beginning of the league. You can always PM me as well.
Starter gear can clear the most of the game, including A8 Sirus as long as you know the mechanics. I have not tried to do Maven or The Feared with it, that might be too hard.
The build leeches 128 mana per second, and since frostblades has Multistrike support it actually only casts 3 times per second which means 100 mana used per second. Leap slam is connected to lifetap to not have any mana problems.
Mana reserved in PoB is also using Skitterbots instead of HoI, so during mapping you have more mana available to you.
you have stolen my league start with this build! i planned on ice trapper but seeing one of my favorite skills in frostblades put to such efficient use and cheap items has swayed me to start this thank you for your service!
Last edited by newbii3 on Jul 23, 2021, 5:17:31 AM
I took witch to brutus and got added lightning damage gem, according to wiki scion gets frost bomb and added cold damage, is this a mistake?
You're suggesting using frostbomb until we find decent 2x 1h weapons and 3link for gems?
ign: Krowa_IX HC | RacingCow races
Scion probably gets it as a reward, Witch can buy it from Nessa after reaching lower prison. It doesn't really matter which one you use, I just personally used witch but Scion is just as capable.
Frost bomb is a good skill for early since it does a lot of damage and can be linked to onslaught, so yes you can use Frost Bomb like all the speedrunners use it. It also serves a secondary purpose, as it gives bosses Cold Exposure and helps you kill them faster with Frost Blades. I generally do a gem swap and put in ruthless in place of Ancestral Call when doing Campaign bosses since they got their health buffed. So frost bomb will further increase the damage.