Dominating Blow Guardian Build Guide (PoE Ultimatum 3.14)

GhazzyTV

74

INTRODUCTION

Dominating Blow Dominating Blow is an insanely strong league start ability offering a lot of variations for the end game. This guide specifically utilizes Herald of Purity Herald of Purity in the end-game for that extra push of both clear speed as well as significant boss damage scaling. Thanks to the straightforward design of the ability, we are able to tweak this build into some pretty juicy defensive styles allowing it to be a solid first choice for starting a league in Hardcore as well!

Below you can see the build in action from my YouTube guide. Do note that the video might be outdated in terms of information, you should always look at this guide to make sure you have the updated information.

BUILD OVERVIEW

In this section I will outline the pros, cons, & the general playstyle. This will allow you to determine if the build is for you or not!

PROS

+ Beefy – Despite being a minion build, it packs a very comfortable eHP #, as well as mitigation, allowing it to function in Hardcore very well.

+ League Starter – The only somewhat mandatory item for this build is super cheap even during the first few days of a league release.

+ Bosser – Minion builds are in a current state of bliss, where bosses simply just melt with the damage output available.

CONS

Face-tanking Bosses – The build requires you to consistently be hitting enemy bosses to keep your minions up.

Minion Build – Since your minions are doing the heavy lifting, defensive layers such as leeching are not favorable in this build. It will rely on regeneration & Life flasks if you take any damage.

PLAYSTYLE

The build uses Dominating Blow Dominating Blow, which summons sentinel minions based of the rarity of the enemy you hit with the ability, in a few different ways: if you strike a Unique enemy you have a 25% chance to summon a normal Sentinel of Dominance (this is the main way to keep minions up against bosses). You will be guaranteed a sentinel if a Normal, Magic, or Rare enemy dies within 1 second of being hit by Dominating Blow. The sentinel summoned will copy the modifiers that enemy had, so if a Rare enemy you kill has an aura modifier granting Haste to nearby allies, your Rare sentinel will also have that aura. This is where Dominating Blow becomes REALLY fun to play, as you can get some absolutely crazy combinations!

DAMAGE SCALING AND DEFENSIVE LAYERS

The build pumps out a beautiful eHP count of ~7K Life with complete cap of both Attack & Spell Block thanks to the Rumi's Concoction Rumi's Concoction flask. The damage scaling is very straightforward in this build, as it is ultimately a very generic minion-oriented build. With an army of minions you can utilize modifiers such as Blind & Taunt on Hit on a Ghastly Eye Jewel Ghastly Eye Jewels.

PoB, PASSIVE SKILL TREE, GEM LINKS

The PoB community fork created by Localidentity is the only version being kept up to date, so make sure you have the correct version: PoB Community Fork.

Here is the Dominating Blow PoB and for a quick glance over the finished skill tree for this version, check out this link.

You can find more information on our dedicated page, along with all the recommended gem links.

PoB, Passive Skill Tree & Gem Link Page

GEARING

A lot of the end-game gear can easily be crafted, to learn how to craft as well as learn how to craft specific items check out my crafting guides here.

You can read more details about our gearing recommendations on the dedicated page, but for now you can see a summarized version below.

Gear Page

Item Slot Item Name/Mods Rarity
Head Life then Res/Attributes as needed Rare
Amulet Life then Res/Attributes as needed Rare
Chest Life then Res/Attributes as needed Rare
Gloves Life then Res/Attributes as needed Rare
Boots Life then Res/Attributes as needed Rare
Belt Darkness Enthroned Darkness Enthroned Unique
Rings Circle of Guilt Circle of Guilt (HoP Reservation) Unique
Weapon The Scourge The Scourge Unique
Shield Life then Res/Attributes as needed; can include “% chance to block spell dmg” Rare

ASCENDANCY, BANDIT & PANTHEON RECOMMENDATIONS

You can read about the recommended Ascendancy, Bandit choice, and Pantheon Power recommendations for this build on our dedicated page.

Ascendancy, Bandit & Pantheon Power Page

LEVELING

You can level with Dominating Blow as you get the skill at level 28; until then it is recommended to utilize both Raise Zombie Raise Zombie with Summon Holy Relic Summon Holy Relic & Smite Smite.

To check the more detailed leveling advise, I’d recommend looking at the leveling section of the skill tree & gem link page.

Once at level 28, the links for DB should be like this in order of importance:

  1. Dominating Blow Dominating Blow
  2. Minion Damage Support Minion Damage Support
  3. Ancestral Call Support Ancestral Call Support
  4. Melee Physical Damage Support Melee Physical Damage Support

If you have a Tabula Rasa Tabula Rasa, the remaining 2 links while leveling should be:

  1. Ruthless Support Ruthless Support
  2. Maim Support Maim Support

For more general leveling advice, we recommend the following guides.

QUESTIONS?

To guarantee that my guides are tools you can utilize to enhance your experience in Path of Exile, all you need to do is post your question in the comments and I will personally attend to them as soon as possible.

FINAL NOTES

As much as I love making build guides, it is very crucial in a game like Path of Exile that you play the game the way you enjoy playing it. With that said, if you’ve made any tweaks to the build compared to what I’m showing in this guide I would love if you’d posted it in the comments! It’s an effective way to show other approaches and it helps me grow as a build guide creator!

I hope you found the build guide useful and I wish you all many Exalted Orb Exalted Orb drops!

14
  1. Posts
    5

    Hey, up to this season I played the Dominating Blow Guardian to my satisfaction. Noticing this build it occurs to me that the build has significantly changed!

    I am about to start it but I noticed that you don’t mention any shield nor any gem links for in a shield. Is that on purpose or did you forget? Eitherway I’m going to use the shield set up from the 3.10 Dominating Blow setup (if I can find it!).

    If you have a good suggestion for a shield, let me know!

    Thanks!

  2. GhazzyTV

    Moderator

    Posts
    267

    On 19/11/2020 at 1:07 PM, Regilla said

    Hey, up to this season I played the Dominating Blow Guardian to my satisfaction. Noticing this build it occurs to me that the build has significantly changed!

    I am about to start it but I noticed that you don’t mention any shield nor any gem links for in a shield. Is that on purpose or did you forget? Eitherway I’m going to use the shield set up from the 3.10 Dominating Blow setup (if I can find it!).

    If you have a good suggestion for a shield, let me know!

    Thanks!

    Hey,

    I’ve sorted this miss and it will be shown momentarily! :)

    Focus for the shield is high life, res & attributes as needed and for higher budget look for #% increased chance to block spell damage!

  3. Posts
    1

    Hi great build. been playing a while and it is smooth and great league starter. I don’t do well on single target though. :(
    I was wondering why all the ES boots and gloves? Is there any particular reason for the sorcerers equips and not go for more armor?

  4. Posts
    16

    I’m thinking about doing something like this for league starting in 3.13, modified to work without the rings or cluster jewels as a baseline since I play SSF. POB’s estimating about 2.4mil Shaper DPS with all the blow/herald minions up, which seems pretty nuts for the super-basic gear I considered (no offensive scaling aside from +1 phys gems/+50% minion damage weapon and +2 minions hat ?).

    A couple questions:

    1. Why punishment instead of vulnerability for your triggered curse? With gem level 20, vulnerability gives about 13% more Shaper DPS in POB, while punishment is only around 10% more average DPS (going from roughly 300% increased damage to 400% increased damage for the last 35% of the target’s health) without even considering boss hex resistance. I’m guessing there’s something I’m missing from not having played it, but I can’t figure out what that is ?

    2. How important is the animate guardian? Since I can’t trade for uniques to outfit it, I may not have a steady flow of nice items for it (especially if it dies on character death, since my internet is rather spotty and random lagspike/disconnect deaths happen). The damage numbers look great without it, but POB numbers aren’t always realistic.

    If you have time for it, I’d love a quick sanity check for the POB I pulled together (https://pastebin.com/iYzWaEZ4), but it’s no problem if you’ve got too much else going on for that.

  5. GhazzyTV

    Moderator

    Posts
    267

    @SaraF:

    It’s a matter of personal taste when it comes to the curse. Punishment provides Debilitate which makes them deal less damage and become slowed hence that preference.

    Animate Guardian is more of a luxury end-game addition in most summoner builds, this one included. It’s there to boost DPS & provide nice buffs such as Fortified & culling with the use of Kingmaker.

    The damage numbers are absolutely realistic, the part that is unrealistic is having max DB & max HoP minions out early enough to have that DPS from the start to finish on a boss fight as it’s a “ramp-up” build vs bosses that don’t have enemies prior to the fight such as map bosses where you even get magic & rare DB minions with different modifiers or hell, even auras making the damage be even more absurd. Sadly this is all situational so I usually calculate my end-game boss dps (conquerors/sirus/shaper/elder/uber elder) with all my HoP minions and 30-50% of my DB minions.

  6. Posts
    16

    Ah, I had overlooked the debilitate effect. Good call ?

    Oh, yeah, when I’d said max minions, I meant just the 9 normal minions for DB + 4 for HOP. The ramp-up time isn’t a major concern for me, since I’m used to DOT builds like scourge arrow or vortex that can’t do an alpha strike like a miner or slammer can. Anyway, even assuming half the POB DPS is a mirage puts me around the “realistic” damage output of my cold DOT trickster who did A8 Sirus and Uber Elder with no problems, so it still sounds good!

    Thanks for quick response ? I’ll do some league start testing next week and take it from there.

  7. GhazzyTV

    Moderator

    Posts
    267

    @SaraF:

    My pleasure, hope you enjoy the build sir! :)

  8. Posts
    1

    Hey Ghazzy,
    How far do you think someone could take this build without the significant uniques (i.e. Circles of Guilt and The Scourge)? I’m doing a 4-person party league start for 3.13 and I’ll eventually convert this char to a discbot, pending any significant changes. The tentative plan is to push this char as far and as quickly into maps as possible before switching over, therefore, I don’t think the uniques will be available or economical for my purpose. Thanks for all you do for the PoE community!

  9. GhazzyTV

    Moderator

    Posts
    267

    @Nikkon3121:

    Very far, this build works wonders in SSF characters as well. The suggested uniques are not “mandatory” so to say, they are generally very good options that are cheap in trade leagues that offers similar efficiency to rares but ultimately rares can be a lot better with proper investments.

    Glad you like the build and I hope it serves you well sir! :)

  10. Posts
    16

    I did some 6-10 practice runs for the early acts, and it’s feeling pretty good EXCEPT for a little rough spot with the Merveil fight. I’m typically level 13 going into that (with Gravepact and Retribution notables), but my zombies/holy relic just get shredded by her persistent damage effects. Perhaps I’m overthinking things, but is there anything you’d suggest to smooth that out? My target links have been:
    Raise Zombie Raise Zombie + Minion Damage Support Minion Damage Support + Added Fire Damage Support Added Fire Damage Support
    Smite Smite + Ancestral Call Support Ancestral Call Support + Onslaught Support Onslaught Support
    Summon Raging Spirit Summon Raging Spirit + Melee Splash Support Melee Splash Support
    plus Flame Dash Flame Dash, Summon Holy Relic Summon Holy Relic, War Banner War Banner, Enduring Cry Enduring Cry

    There was a run where I did Summon Raging Spirit Summon Raging Spirit + Spell Totem Support Spell Totem Support + Melee Splash Support Melee Splash Support, which seemed to help, but getting three 3-links and an extra transmute didn’t feel consistent ?

    Not a huge deal if you don’t have much advise on this since I’m not a racer and I’m not dying there, but I figured there’s no harm in asking.

  11. GhazzyTV

    Moderator

    Posts
    267

    @Saraf:

    Well, during the leveling sequence you have rather limited options unless you’re willing to re-spec later.

    You can either do SRS which I would suggest not using a totem for but rather self-cast, SRS – Min dmg – Melee Splash (Change splash for added fire for single target). But using Zombies with a Holy Relic should be more than fine to keep them alive, you could throw in a Holy Flame Totem during this sequence as well as it generates consecrated ground on top of things.

  12. Posts
    16

    I gave that a try and liked how it worked out. Flame Totem + Infused Channeling + Phantasm does well enough to clear packs until Weaver, and then I can reuse the same links for Zombies + Melee Phys + Minion Damage. Thanks for the idea!

  13. Posts
    2

    Hey @GhazzyTV,

    Are there any useful uniq items for a really high level budget build (rather than rings and belt that you already put in PoB)?

  14. GhazzyTV

    Moderator

    Posts
    267

    @Saraf:

    Awesome to hear!

    @Vermillion:

    Hey! Not really no, you can chose between the Synthesized rings for the HoP or go for higher mods/numerical values on rare rings but other than that no other options.

  15. Posts
    2

    Hello mate,

    First of thanks for your all your guides and contributions to the community!

    Long time POE player here and long time summoner as well – albeit with limited time for the past few years.

    I always wanted to make a “classic” summoner (maybe with mages) as a Guardian. Based on the changes to ascendancies so far do you believe that this would be a good time to try one without gimping myself too much? (I never cared for speedy gameplay)

    And yes I know we are waiting for the patch notes any minute now :)

    Edit: holy fk.. good luck on me getting skeletal mages now :P

  16. Posts
    1

    Hi Ghazzy,
    How do you sustain mana when attacking with Dominating Blow 6L having The Scourge? My mana always drains to 0 after few seconds.
    What items / passives should I use?

  17. GhazzyTV

    Moderator

    Posts
    267

    @Arkakos:

    This build will surely fulfill your needs, it’s an amazing build and works wonders as a league starter :)

    @Schovan:

    That should never be a problem with the way this build is designed.

    3.13 Update Video: https://youtu.be/iyRk_JpagNQ

  18. Posts
    6

    Hi Ghazzy,

    First thanks for all your summoner content, it’s always very very good stuff.
    Small question, is there a place for Feeding Frenzy support somewhere ? Seems like a good damage boost, maybe on the carrion golem by putting convocation in an unset ring ?

Please log in to reply.