Trade servers are undergoing maintenance. Some features will be unavailable.

[3.17] Ultimate Self-cast Flameblast Occulist. Pure Damage and Tankiness for End Game.

Welcome Exile! Jenno here.

Tired of playing meta but can't make non-meta build work?

Made your own spell caster but can't kill bosses higher than elder?

Or maybe just want to feel the accomplishment that you turned the weakest skill in POE into a powerful end-game build?

Then look no further, introducing the ultimate self-cast flameblast build.



Videos
Spoiler

Note: only the Simulacrum video is recorded with end-game gear.

Simulacrum Wave 30


Delve + Aul kill


Catarina


Sirus


Maven's Invitation: The Formed


Maven's Invitation: The Twisted



Build Story
Spoiler

As some may know, I'm the creator of another non-meta build guide (oneshot tectonic slam chieftain).

After playing the same slam build for 6 leagues in a row, I decided to play something different for Archnemesis. When choosing the build, instead of following the meta trend, I simply wanted to go with a skill that looks fun to play regardless how bad it is. So I turned to flameblast.

Flameblast is considered as the weakest skill in the game, because it lacks almost everything that a build needs to be successful. It lacks single-target damage, just like any self-cast spells despite recent buff. It lacks clearing speed, because you have to stand still for a long time to clear a pack of mobs. It lacks defense, because everyone knows you have to keep moving to not get killed in current game.

After many hours of research and experiments, I finally manage to overcome these limitations with several interesting mechanisms. After that, flameblast starts to shine just like a meta skill. The current build is the result of my efforts this league, and I have gained a tremendous amount of enjoyment from designing and testing the build.

Here I would like to share the build with POE community, hoping you can feel the same excitement and accomplishment as I did playing the build.


Build Highlights
Spoiler

Offense
Spoiler

Single-target: Up to 20M consistent chaos damage per blast, with fast casting speed (10 stages in 0.6-0.7 second when buffed)

Clearing: 6L fireball with 40% explosion, 118% movement speed for mapping


Defense
Spoiler

75% block chance:for both attack and spell damage (REAL blocks, NOT Glancing Blows)

90% phys reduction: 20k armour from determination, molten shell and endurance charges

75% chaos resistance: from ascendency and gears

Immune to elemental ailment: from purity of elements

Petrified Blood: provide damage prevention

1300+ effective life regen: with overleech and regen combined, and 200+ energy shield leech

Fortify: 10 stacks from animate guardian

90% reduced extra crit damage taken: from watcher's eye and mastery node

Nearby enemies have 100% reduced life regen: from ascendancy



Mechanics Explained
Spoiler

Offense
Spoiler

Single-target Damage
Spoiler

My philosophy of single-target damage is: pure damage, no ailment, no burning, no fuss.

For that, I first leveraged the ashes of star to reach 50% quality on anomalous flameblast, converting 100% of fire damage to chaos. Then I can use Occultist's Ascendancy to scale the chaos damage.

Next, we invest in crit strikes and crit multi to scale the damage further. I realized this is what many people do, but the damage is very underwhelming. The common mistake they made is: they rely too much on choosing shield as weapon, missing many weapon-specific crit nodes in the tree as a result. Therefore, I gave up using shield and used two-handed staff instead so that I can benefit from the crit-related nodes on the skill tree. I observed a substantial improvement on critical chance and criti multi after this.

Now that we have good chaos damage with crit, to bring the chaos damage to next level, we can leverage wither that can increase enemy's chaos damage taken up to 90%. To achieve this, our ascendancy node withering presence can help us reach maximum stack and maintain the debuff easily.

At last, our damage per blast reached about 20 million damage. But the damage wouldn't be useful if it takes too long to cast. To improve the damage throughput, I invest heavily in cast speed so that the entire 10 stages can be done within 0.6-0.7 seconds when buffed. This cast time is similar to a Melee slam skill's attack time, and it gives us lots of room for defense too.

Here's a sneak peak of the damage on T16 120% quantity conqueror without end-game gears:



Clearing Damage
Spoiler

To solve the clearing problem and to farm currency efficiently, I used a secondary skill: fireball, to clear packs of mobs.

The fireball is chosen because of many reasons. First its base damage is high and its damage type can allow us to scale its damage together with flameblast. Second, it offers shot-gun effect when pairing with GMP and Chain support, which makes it extremely effective at clearing mobs. To top of all off, we have 40% corpse explosion that deals chaos damage.

Here's how shot-gun effect works with chain support:



when there's a dense pack of mobs, a fireball will bounce between close-by targets 3 times, dealing explosion damage each time. As a result, each target will take 3 times of the damage. When GMP support is linked, the shot-gun effect will be even more significant.

The fireball completely overcomes the clearing speed limitations of other flameblast builds, and allow us the clear packs of mobs in ultra high speed. Juiced T16 maps can be cleared easily with only a 4L fireball. With 6L fireball in end-game, we can clear the first 20 waves of simulacrum with fireball only.





Defense
Spoiler

Block
Spoiler

The major source of our defense comes from maxing out block chance for both attack and spells. A 75% block chance means 3 out of 4 hits will not do damage to us.

Surprisingly, maxing out both attack and spell block chance in our build isn't hard at all.

Here's a breakdown of 75% attack block chance:


We get most of attack block chances from tree by using a two-handed staff. The only 2 items needed is rumi's concoction and Martyr of Innocence, both can drop everywhere and cost less than 5c.

Here's a breakdown of 75% spell block chance:


Max spell block chance is easy to reach too. Other than the flask, we need one abyss jewel with 2% spell block chance, and a veiled spell block prefix (10%) on chest armour.

If the veiled prefix is hard to acquire early in game, you can achieve the same effect by crafting spell block chance on chest armour (8%) and invest one more skill point to get spell block (3%).


Physical Damage Reduction
Spoiler

To increase armour, our build runs determination, molten shell (vaal molten shell too), and scales armour on flasks. This will give us 20+k armour.

In addition, we also leverage 4 endurance charges (gain endurance charge when hit), and Gruthkul Pantheon to cap our physical damage reduction at 90% in combat.

Combining the phys reduction with maxed block, we are very tanky against physical damages.


Elemental Ailments Immunity
Spoiler

Elemental ailments are de-buffs like Ignite, chill, freeze, shock, scorch, brittle, and sap. The details of what these ailments do can be found in https://www.poewiki.net/wiki/Ailment.

These ailments often weaken the build significantly. For example, chill makes us move and attack slower, shock increases our damage taken, ignite makes us take damage over time.

The good news is: we don't have to worry about those mechanics with the build by using purity of elements. And we get some additional elemental resistance too as extra bonus.


Petrified Blood, Life Regen, Damage Over Time Defense
Spoiler

Petrified blood is a powerful defense mechanic that converts part of incoming damage into damage over time. A good metaphor for this is: instead of paying for damage at a full cost, you pay with a loan that has negative interest rate. Ziz made a detailed guide on how petrified blood makes you tanky https://youtu.be/fqFmywbeSyo.

The most powerful thing about petrified blood is over-leech. Once you have a leeching source and unreserved life is more than reserved life, you are always leeching when you kill enemies. In our case, we have 885 life leeched every second from fireball. This can be viewed as 885/s life regen in combat.

On top of overleech, we have 490/s life regen because of vitality and bottled faith, so that our effective life regen is now 1300+/second. Combining this further with various life gained on block nodes and recover %life on kill mod, the petrified's blood damage over time is entirely mitigated. So that in my previous "loan" metaphor, you can get away with paying "down payment" only.

Other damage over time poses little to no threats either. We have corrupted blood immunity on abyss jewel, bleeding immunity on life flask. Even if we did not use the flask in time, the high life regen and high phys reduction (not counting the armour) can counter lots of bleeding damage too. For poison, we have maxed chaos resistance and high life regen. For cold DoT, our high life regen will counter majority of the effects, plus they are usually ground effects so we can simply dash away.


Other Defense Mechanics
Spoiler


75% chaos resistance: Because our choice of ascendancy and trees, we are given 68% chaos resistance for free. It makes capping chaos resistance much easier - we just need to get extra 67% chaos resistance to reach 75%.

Animate Guardian and Fortify (10 stacks): In end-game we have animate guardian that is unkillable even in simulacrum wave 30. It can taunt enemies and take lots of damage for us. It will also provide 10 stacks of fortify, which is 10% less damage taken ON TOP OF everything I've described before.

90% reduced extra crit damage taken: a major source of one-shot mechanic in end-game is crit damage. Whenever you see a map that says: "monster has 300% increased critical strike chance and +50% crit multiplier", you are easily one-shotted. Because a 3k damage can become 6k under crit condition. A 90% reduced crit damage taken means instead of taking 6k damage, we take 3.3k, which is only sightly more than the normal hit. The higher the critical damage, more significant the effect of reduction will be.

Nearby enemies have 100% reduced life regen: This is in fact both offensive and defensive mechanics. In many POE contents such as metamorph and expedition, we need to face monsters with high life regeneration. This is why many experienced players need to use frost bomb to suppress enemy's regen effect for both offense and defense. This mechanic is given to our build for free as ascendancy skill, so that we can clear high regen mobs easily and they have less chance to deal damage to us as a result.

There are other minor defensive mechanics I won't mention in detail, such as life/ES gain on block, %life gain on kill, energy shield leech, elusive during mapping, hinder nearby enemies. They provide additional boost on our existing survivability.

Showcasing build tanking hits from both simulacrum bosses at wave 30:





Pros and Cons
Spoiler

Pros
Spoiler

Great single target damage
Great clearing speed
Great defense on hits & DoT damage

Cons
Spoiler

Can't handle reflect mods
Can't do no-regen mods
Not lazy build
can be challenging to new player, flameblast needs good sense of position and timing



Gears
Spoiler

The current gear section only include gears for end-game build. For lower-budget gears, please check the Mid-game POB under POB section.

End-game Gears
Spoiler

Weapon
Spoiler



Martyr of Innocence is a weapon that fits perfectly with this build. It is a two-handed staff, which allows us to leverage the crit-related skill trees. Its base fire damage and %increased fire damage mods can boost the damage for both flameblast and fireball. It also provides up to 34% attack block chance, which helps us cap attack block chance easily.

The best of all, it can drop everywhere and it's very cheap to acquire.


Body Armour
Spoiler



We use a vaal regalia to get lots of ES from body armour. We can use awakener orb to craft the endurance charge on hit and spell crit suffixes.

As for prefixes, we need a double curse mod and a veiled/crafted spell block mod to cap our spell block chance. I got lucky when using the awakener orb and landed a recover % life on kill mod. The mod isn't necessary for us.

Crafting Instruction:
Spoiler

1. Prepare a 6L lvl 84+ hunter-influenced vaal regalia, you can slam a hunter exalted orb if the existing hunter base is too expensive.

2. use harvest craft: reforge caster more common until you have both double curse and T1 spell crit.

3. Use Orb of Dominance (Maven's orb) and try elevating the T1 spell crit chance. Go back to 2 if failed. If you succeeded, make sure the elevated spell crit is the only influence mod.

4. Buy or alt craft another lvl80+ warlord influenced body armour with the endurance charge mod. Make sure the endurance charge mod is the only influence mod.

5. Use awakener orb to destroy the item in 4 and merge to the vaal regalia. If the suffix is not filled, use beast craft: remove prefix add suffix to fill the suffix.

6. Make sure there is empty prefix. If no empty prefix, then do reforge keep suffix. Once you get empty prefix, craft suffix cannot be changed, then reforge caster to get double curse. Make sure double curse is the only prefix mod. Repeat this step if there are other prefixes.

7. prefix cannot be changed, and use ailsing to unveil spell block mod and preserve the double curse. If failed, go back to 6.

8. craft life, and reroll. done



Helmet
Spoiler



Eber's unification is another cheap & under-utilized item in POE that fits perfectly with our build.

First it gives pretty considerable amount of ES to help with defense. Also, it gives stun & block recovery which synergizes well with Brine King Pantheon to deal with stun. Moreover, it gives extra elemental damage as chaos too.

The most valuable mod that the item provides is: void gaze. It is triggered every time we use a skill and can reduce enemy's chaos res by 20% for 10 seconds. Considering its 2 seconds cool down and 10 seconds duration, this item provides a guaranteed 20% chaos resistance penetration all the time. Our flameblast is able to deal insane amount of damage because of this.


Gloves
Spoiler



The end-game glove is considerably the most expensive item to craft. The required suffixes are: essence mod, T1/elevated crit multi, a T1/T2/elevated faster casting mod. For prefix, we need a veiled +2 AOE gem mod.

We will put the flameblast on glove to get 7-link benefits. (4L from gems, 3 links from suffixes).

Crafting Instruction
Spoiler

1. Get a level 84 Fingerless Silk Gloves with shaper influence. If the shaper influence is too expensive, you can buy the base with other influence and use harvest craft: change influence armour to make it shaper influenced.

2. apply essences of horror for the % crit chance suffix.

3. Use orb of annulment to remove all suffixes except the essence mod, also make sure there is at least one open prefix. Go back to 2 if failed.

4. Craft suffix cannot be changed, and use orb of scouring. You should now have a magic item with only essence suffix mod. Next, craft suffix cannot be changed on the magic item.

5. Imprint the item.

6. Apply harvesr craft: reforge caster more common, to hit either T1 crit multi or T1 faster casting, and with one empty suffix and prefix. If there's no empty suffix and prefix after hitting T1 mod, try use annulment orb. If failed, restore the item and go back to 5.

7. Now your item should have essence mod, T1 crit multi or T1 faster casting, and one empty prefix and suffix. Craft suffix cannot be changed, then use harvest craft: reforge caster (or reforge caster more common). You will be guaranteed with the other suffix mod. If you landed T3 mod, then go back to step 5. If you have double T1 mod or elevated+T1/T2 mod, go to step 9. If T2 mod and the other mod isn't elevated, go to step 8.

8. If you have T1 + T2 suffix, you can use orb of dominance (Maven's orb) to either remove T2, elevating T1. Or Remove T1, Making T2 to T1. Then you can go back to step 7 again.

9. Now your item's suffix should be essence mod, elevated + T1/T2 or double T1 crit multi and faster casting. Now we will start working on prefixes. First apply suffix cannot be changed. If there's no empty prefix, use harvest craft: reforge keep suffix to get the empty prefix.

10. Use unveiled chaos orb to get +2 AOE unveil prefix and empty prefix. If failed go back to step 9.

11. Benchcraft life, and reroll a good numerical value for all mods. Done



Boots
Spoiler



Boots is a standard tailwind-onslaught + elusive boots. It gives lots of clearing speed and casting speed for the build.


Amulet
Spoiler



Ashes of stars is the center of our mechanics. We are able to convert 100% of fire damage to chaos because of this. On top of this, it also makes many of our skill gems much stronger, such as animate guardian being more tanky, auras more effective.


Rings
Spoiler



On the curse ring,we need despair curse so we can trigger explosion on enemies. I used awakener orb to craft crit multi and despair together. Then unveil the life mod, and bench crafted the channeling mana cost prefix.

On the other ring, I use it to meet dex and str requirements. The chaos damage leeched as life mod is currently my source of life leech, but you can easily get a better leech source from watcher's eye with vitality mod. For prefixes, they are the same as other ring.


Belts
Spoiler



for belt, I went with stygian vise with double T1 life and chaos damage as prefixes. cast speed during flask as suffixes. For the rest of the mods, you can fill it with any resistance you need.


Jewels
Spoiler

Watcher's eye
Spoiler



Reduced crit damage taken is a must, and if you need leech sources, you can get the vitality leech mod.


Cluster Jewel
Spoiler



We use these cluster jewels to get the extra block chances we need, as well as gain easy access to jewel sockets.


Normal Jewel
Spoiler



For normal jewel, my criteria is:
a. must have %life
b. have at least 2 of the following: cast speed (including different variants) and crit multi (including different variants)
c. If a jewel has 2 mods mentioned in (b), find resistance or attributes.



Flasks
Spoiler



For life flask, I went with eternal flask with increased recovery and bleed immunity.

For utility flasks, we need quicksilver and silver flasks each having gain charges on hit mod. Then get % armour and %cast speed on them.

For unique flasks, we need rumi's concoction to cap block chances and bottled faith to increase damage and provide additional life regen.


Animate Guardian
Spoiler

Animate Guardian is an allied minion that can wear gears (helmet, body armour, weapon, gloves, and boots). Because of this, it can provide buff to you by wearing specific gears and distract enemy for you.

To achieve that, we need to improve the animate guardian's survivability as much as possible.

For life, animate guardian already had a good life pool. In addition, using the divergent gem plus the ashes of star can significantly boost the life further.

For resistance, animate guardian has 40% base elemental resistance, and 20% base chaos resistance. To cap its resistances, our job is to provide 35% elemental resistance and 50% chaos resistance through gears.

Now let's get to gears:

Helmet: Mask of the Stitched Demon. This helmet will interact with body armour's energy shield mod to provide around 8% life regen every second, this is the main item that keeps the guardian alive.

Body Armour: For body armour, we need a rare armour with mod: You have Consecrated Ground around you while stationary, then craft the prefix: gain 10% of maximum life as extra energy shield. At last, we also need body armour to provide at least 35% elemental resistance of one type.

Boots: For boots, find a base with enchant: regenerate 2% of life if being hit recently. For mods, we need 35% chaos resistance and at least 20% movement speed and 20% elemental resistance. Then we can craft another 15% chaos + elemental resistance so that resistances are capped for two elements and chaos with body and boots together.

Gloves:: Get a southbound glove with 16% increased life. we also get to cap cold resistance as bonus, so that all resistances should now capped.

Weapon:: Kingmaker. This weapon is the main source of buff for us, it provides culling strike, crit multi, and fortify.

Important Note:: The gears recommended above is only recommended for end game, and our animate guardian should survive wave 30 simulacrum without issue. However, there are other contents in POE that will destroy animate guardian no matter how tanky it is, for example, the feared invitation or some new uber boss fights. That's why you need to anticipate those contents and disable animate guardian when necessary.

If you want, you can also use weapon swap to quickly disable animate guardian in combat when its health drops below half. To do that, you need to socket animate guardian related gems on weapon.




Pantheon, Ascendancy, Bandits
Spoiler

Pantheon Major: Brine King, to deal with stun
Pantheon Minor: Gruthkul, to get extra phys reduction

Ascendancy: Profane Bloom -> Void Beacon -> Withering Presence -> Forbidden Power

Bandits: Kill them all


Leveling
Spoiler

You can level the build using fireball supported with less multiple projectile (later upgrade to GMP), chain, arcane surge, elemental focus, inspiration.

You can also start using flameblast in acts too despite limited damage. After mapping you can start using ashes of stars and get anomalous flameblast.

The gears you can use during leveling is the same as any other builds, such as tabula, wanderlust, and so on.


POB
Spoiler

Mid-game build
Spoiler

https://pastebin.com/Skrz8Ft5

Config Explanation
Spoiler

In the Mid-game build, we only check Power charges, crit recently, and wither.

All of them are explained in detail in the End-game POB config explanation.



End-game Build
Spoiler

https://pastebin.com/StGc3uL3

Config Explanation
Spoiler

Power charges: Our builds have many ways to gain power charges with increased duration. As a result, our power charges are full ALL TIME in combat (as can be seen in video). Therefore, we checked the box to indicate power charges are full.

Endurance charges: We can always be at full endurance charges thanks to our "gain 1 endurance charge every second on hit" mod.

Fortified (10 stacks): this is provided by our animate guardian's kingmaker weapon

Leeching energy shield: If energy shield isn't full and we are dealing spell damage, then we are leeching energy shield. This is because of the energy shield leech node we have on the tree.

on consecrated ground: This is related to our bottled faith, the consecrated ground has screen-wide radius so that both boss and us almost always stand on it.

Crit recently: We have 100% crit chance, so definitely crit recently

# times we've been hit recently is 1: since we are not investing on evasion , it's almost a given that we will be hit by enemy (regardless of block or not)

fusion active: this is related to infused channeling support, we gain fusion buff after 0.6 seconds of channeling. This is a guranteed buff because our flameblast takes 0.6-0.7 seconds to cast.

wither stacks: I put as 15 to show the damage for long boss fights. The wither comes from Withering Presence. It has a screen-wide AOE (60 radius) and lasts 15 seconds. Therefore, as long as the boss is within our screen, we are stacking wither consistently on bosses. I know many other chaos builds rely on wither totem to apply 2 second wither and cannot sustain wither properly. But this isn't the case for our build.

Custom Modifier: Culling Strike and +50% to crit multi. Both stats are provided by animate guardian's kingmaker




Change Logs
Spoiler

4/17/2022 - Initial writing of the build guide.
Last edited by JennoJoyce on Jun 5, 2022, 9:12:03 AM
Last bumped on Aug 17, 2022, 12:17:16 AM
Taken for later
Build guide finished, welcoming feedbacks!
Last edited by JennoJoyce on Apr 17, 2022, 3:59:01 PM
Quite frankly : amazing build good job

It seems doable on a league start scenario too but i'm just worried about ashes of the star nerfs to alternate quality % (if there's any in 3.18)
Hopefully they either don't touch that part of the amy or make it only affect active skill gems, it's a build enabling amulet literally

Have a great day sir
"
Quite frankly : amazing build good job

It seems doable on a league start scenario too but i'm just worried about ashes of the star nerfs to alternate quality % (if there's any in 3.18)
Hopefully they either don't touch that part of the amy or make it only affect active skill gems, it's a build enabling amulet literally

Have a great day sir


Thank you!

I hope GGG only nerfs alt-quality skill gems individually instead of nerfing ashes of star itself.

fingers crossed
Last edited by JennoJoyce on Apr 23, 2022, 12:37:48 PM
Fantastic job man. You know sh1t is serious with wave 30 simulac.
Any plan on revisit the tec slam build?. I love that build. And let hope that GGG wont nerf the ashen too hard or else this build not gonna last the next league lol
"
Quachthibum wrote:
Fantastic job man. You know sh1t is serious with wave 30 simulac.
Any plan on revisit the tec slam build?. I love that build. And let hope that GGG wont nerf the ashen too hard or else this build not gonna last the next league lol


Thanks!

I recently updated slam build too, with the new ascendancy jewel, the build becomes even better. Feel free to go check it out:)

As for ashs of the star, it's almost certain that it would get nerfed, the only question is how :)
Very nice write up. Going to start leveling now and try it out. I have major concerns on getting that chest tho...
"
Very nice write up. Going to start leveling now and try it out. I have major concerns on getting that chest tho...


Thank you! the spell crit isn’t necessary, so it’s simply awakener orb to craft the two influenced suffixes. Then suffix cannot be changed and reforge caster to get double curse. And use sailing to get the spell block.

If you are leveling up, you can first get the gear for mid-game build.
New league looking strong

Report Forum Post

Report Account:

Report Type

Additional Info