This build guide is split over multiple pages, both to prevent it from getting too long, as well as to help you better find the information you are looking for. In addition to the current page, which presents general information about the build and also contains a Leveling and FAQ section, we have the following pages:
The Dominating Blow Guardian is an interesting type of summoner that can create an army of minions via dominating foe’s minds and raising the dead. Dominating Blow is a skill that creates an apparition of the fallen enemies that fights on your side for decent duration. You can raise normal, magic and rare monsters; rares are especially powerful since they can buff your whole army (and yourself) with strong auras. The build achieves a decent life pool, good amount of Life Regeneration, and great damage potential for endgame.
The build does not require any items to start playing and is a great league-starter. There are some endgame items you should aim for, but they are not particularly expensive or hard to get. The Scourge will scale both yours and your minions’ damage, while allowing you to have decent attack damage. Belly of the Beast will provide great amount of life.
Pros & Cons
+ Hardcore viable
+ Satisfying “snowballing” playstyle
+ Great single target potential
- Mediocre mobility
- It is hard to get your whole army of minions summoned every time you change zones, for example bosses in new areas
Offensively, hitting enemies with Dominating Blow will summon additional minions that will deal a great amount of damage. Herald of Purity, Raise Zombie, Summon Holy Relic, and Summon Stone Golem will all help out by dealing a ton of damage. Hitting with Smite every once in a while will provide a damage buff for all of your minions.
Defensively, as in every summoner build, you will be able to use your minions as a “meat shield”. Your great life pool, a lot of Life Regeneration, Armour, Block Chance, and Endurance charges will help you survive tough hits.
For playstyle, staying offensive, keeping your army alive and leading forward is what you should be doing mainly. Killing a pack of monsters in every new zone will be enough to start your minions’ rampage.
This is the endgame passive skill tree you should aim for. Our goal is to efficiently pick life, minion nodes, increased duration nodes and Resolute Technique.
For more information, be sure to check out the passive skill tree page.
Ascendancy, Bandits, and Pantheons
Our Ascendancy, Bandit, and Pantheon Power page goes into detail about all the choices you need to make in these regards.
We go over all of the gem links this build uses in the end-game on our Gem Link page.
Gear Summary / TL;DR
These items provide a good balance between offense and defense and are enough to deal with the endgame, although there is definitely a room for improvement. Please ensure you read the Gear, Jewels and Flasks page in its entirety.
|Item Slot||Item Name|
|Chest||Belly of the Beast|
|Gloves||Command of the Pit|
As a reminder, we have several guides to help you level up a character.
- Our step-by-step leveling walkthrough, which allows even more experienced players to save time and speed through the leveling process.
- Our guide to Unique Items for leveling, which helps you gear up your characters for the leveling process.
- Our beginner leveling guide, which answers many of the questions new players might have and will set you on the right path.
The Dominating Blow Guardian can be very easily by using Smite as a main skill early on. Although you can transition to Dominating Blow at level 28, we recommend using Smite until maps for smoother leveling experience.
With this passive skill tree you will allow you to get a general idea of what is important to pick up early on.
Useful Leveling Unique Items
As you begin a new character, there are few unique items that can boost your power exponentially. Tabula Rasa allows you to have a 6-Linked skill as early as you get the gems. Wanderlust gives a decent movement speed, which will make your leveling that much more efficient. Goldrim provides a lot of elemental resistances, this will let you worry less about gearing when approaching certain Act encounters.
If you are a new player (or if this is your first character for the league), then note that obtaining these items will be very difficult, if not impossible. They are rare drops, which you can otherwise only acquire if you have saved up currency, so do not focus on them too much, and instead simply look for items that match the affix priorities listed in the gearing section above.
Using Tabula Rasa will allow you to have 6-Link gem setups early on, which is why we show such examples below. If you cannot get Tabula Rasa (or another item with a 6-Link), then simply prioritize the first gems in each link provided below.
In order to acquire gems that are not available to your class as a quest reward, simply ask a friend to buy them off vendors for you, or buy them yourself from Sioasa in The Library in Act III Library.
By level 8, your Raise Zombie link should look like this.
At level 16, you should add Herald of Purity, use the following link.
At level 28, you can finally transition to your signature skill, Dominating Blow.
- Dominating Blow
- Ancestral Call Support
- Melee Splash Support
- Melee Physical Damage Support
- Ruthless Support
- Maim Support
Why would I play the Dominating Blow Guardian over any other summoner build?
This particular build may be a bit slower compared to other summoner builds, but has an insane damage potential when all of your buffs and minions are up. Also, summoners in general hardly recover when they get hit, simply because they only rely on their minions and do not Leech Life or have a great amount of Life Regeneration. This is where the Dominating Blow Guardian, with his great recovery via the Time of Need ascendancy node, great Life Regeneration, and some Life Leech via the Atziri's Promise unique flask really shines.
The Dominating Blow Guardian allows you to be an active aggressive summoner that leads his crusade.