Frost Blades Slayer Build Guide (PoE Blight 3.8)

Vvckd

17


Introduction

The Frost Blades Slayer is a mid-range type of character that uses two-handed Swords in order to deal massive amounts of Cold damage. This build has great clear speed while also maintaining respectable and high enough single target damage to deal with the endgame content. Slayer’s overleech mechanic allows for great and reliable sustain while the Execution at 20% Life via Bane of Legends practically makes some boss fights a joke.

Build Summary

The Frost Blades Slayer can be played on a budget, with the potential to become very powerful if you choose to invest vast amount of currency into the build. Early on, two Fight for Survival Fight for Survival threshold jewels will allow you to penetrate 30% Cold Resistances. Loreweave Loreweave is a good addition to the build, but you can play without it early on.

Pros & Cons

Pros

+ Hardcore viable
+ Cheap to start
+ Great clear speed

Cons

- Dies to Elemental Reflect

Playstyle

Offensively, attacking with Frost Blades Frost Blades will result in a massive amount of chaining projectiles that will clear whole screens of monsters. When it comes to fighting tougher bosses, you can utilize a Totem, Banner and Cold Resistance reductions like Frost Bomb Frost Bomb. For mobility, you should use Leap Slam Leap Slam all the time. Hatred Hatred and Herald of Ice Herald of Ice will provide a lot of damage.

Defensively, keeping your distance is key, considering from how far the skill can attack. You will rely on Slayer’s overleech mechanic for surviving after getting hit hard.

For playstyle, you should Leap Slam near monster packs and obliterate them with one or two attacks of Frost Blades Frost Blades. Blood Rage Blood Rage should be active all the time.

Ascendancy, Passive Tree, Bandits, and Pantheons

Ascendancy (Ranger – Raider)

  1. Headsman
  2. Bane of Legends
  3. Endless Hunger
  4. Brutal Fervour

You will have no reason early leveling to invest into leech. This is why we are going for Headsman first: the more damage while clearing the game content allows for smooth and easy leveling experience.

Bane of Legends basically makes boss fights a joke. 20% Culling Strike on everything you hit is actually so strong, when you get used to it and play some other build you will miss it for sure.

Endless Hunger makes leech more reliable and you do not have to worry about bleeds any more.

Brutal Fervour is the bread and butter of the build: this ascendancy combined with Vaal Pact is what makes the build great.

Note: If your Sword has low Critical Chance, you can use Overwhelm instead of Bane of Legends.

Passive Tree

This is what your endgame passive skill tree should look like.

We mainly focus on picking all the powerful Sword nodes along with decent amount of Life and Point Blank. As in all critical-based builds, we recommend transitioning into critical strikes at level 60+. Winter Spirit can be used early on when you still have not fully converted all of your damage to Cold.

Bandits

For this specific build we should help Alira in Act II. The Critical Multiplier, flat Mana Regeneration, and 15% all elemental resistances are stronger than the 2 passive skill points.

Pantheons

Major: All major pantheons can be used based on personal preference, but we recommend using Soul of Solaris.

Minor: for critical-based attack builds Soul of Ralakesh is probably the best minor got, since he can provides Blind immunity.

Pantheon powers can be upgraded by using Divine Vessel in the Map Device while you are activating the particular Map that contains the boss you need. Once you’ve killed the boss and captured his soul, you need to deliver the vessel to Sin in Oriath.

Gems

Frost Blades Frost Blades is your signature skill, which should ideally be used in a 6-Link. For mobility, you should use Leap Slam Leap Slam. Hatred Hatred and Herald of Ice Herald of Ice should be active all the time. War Banner War Banner provides a good amount of Accuracy Rating; this skill will boost your single target damage potential by a great deal for a short duration when you drop the banner on the ground. Ancestral Warchief Ancestral Warchief can be used to augment your single target damage even further. Frost Bomb Frost Bomb can be placed on the ground to lower enemies’ cold resistances. Blood Rage Blood Rage will provide % increased Attack Speed along with Frenzy charges generation.

For all the gem links we provide below, keep in mind that we list the gems in order of priority, meaning that if you lack the required number of sockets to fit all the gems, the first ones to drop are the ones at the bottom. Also note that in-game, as long as the sockets are linked, it makes no difference at all what order the gems are placed in.

Frost Blades (6-Link)

Frost Blades Frost Blades is a very fun melee skill to use, its initial hit will only damage one target, the projectiles that appear behind the target will destroy whole monster packs. Combining this skill with Ancestral Call Support Ancestral Call Support will result in three times more projectiles. We recommend two different links for both clearing and single target.

For clearing, use the following link.

  1. Frost Blades Frost Blades
  2. Ancestral Call Support Ancestral Call Support
  3. Elemental Damage with Attacks Support Elemental Damage with Attacks Support
  4. Hypothermia Support Hypothermia Support
  5. Damage on Full Life Support Damage on Full Life Support
  6. Increased Critical Strikes Support Increased Critical Strikes Support

For single target, use the following link.

  1. Frost Blades Frost Blades
  2. Multistrike Support Multistrike Support
  3. Elemental Damage with Attacks Support Elemental Damage with Attacks Support
  4. Hypothermia Support Hypothermia Support
  5. Damage on Full Life Support Damage on Full Life Support
  6. Increased Critical Strikes Support Increased Critical Strikes Support

Leap Slam (4-Link)

Leap Slam Leap Slam will improve your mobility by a great deal. Hitting enemies with the skill will give you the Fortify buff for a short duration.

  1. Leap Slam Leap Slam
  2. Faster Attacks Support Faster Attacks Support
  3. Fortify Support Fortify Support
  4. Blood Magic Support Blood Magic Support

Other Gems

You can socket in Blood Rage Blood Rage for additional Attack Speed and Frenzy charge generation. Steelskin Steelskin can be used as another layer of defense, and it should be activated manually. Hatred Hatred and Herald of Ice Herald of Ice will give you a lot of cold damage. Ancestral Warchief Ancestral Warchief can be used for the damage multiplier while it is active. War Banner War Banner will help out with its Adrenaline buff. Drop Frost Bomb Frost Bomb on the ground against tanky enemies.

Gearing

Capping your elemental resistances is essential and it should always be your top priority in any build; it should be the first thing you do when gearing up a character. Obtaining a 6-link, while very powerful and certainly recommended, can potentially be very expensive (requiring an average of 1500 Orbs of Fusing, obviously depending on your luck); as such, this should not really be a goal for you while gearing up, and you should instead settle for a 5-link until you have enough resources. You should have two Fight for Survival Fight for Survival unique jewels as soon as possible.

Helmet

Starkonja's Head Starkonja's Head is a great choice for the build. A rare helmet can also be used. For enchant, look for “#% additional increased Attack Speed granted by Blood Rage”. The Rare affix priority is:

  1. +#% total Elemental Resistances (until capped)
  2. +# to maximum life (90)
  3. % Increased Maximum Life (Pristine Fossil Pristine Fossil)
  4. Nearby Enemies have -9% to Cold Resistance (Frigid Fossil Frigid Fossil)

Body Armour

Both Belly of the Beast Belly of the Beast and Loreweave Loreweave are great choices for the build. A rare Body Armour is also a great choice, look for an Elder base. The Rare affix priority is:

  1. +#% total Elemental Resistances (until capped)
  2. +# to maximum life (90)
  3. % Increased Maximum Life (Elder Prefix; Pristine Fossil Pristine Fossil)
  4. Attacks have +#% to Critical Strike Chance (Elder Suffix)

Gloves

Tombfist Tombfist unique Gloves are a great addition to the build. A rare pair of Gloves will also do the work. Hrimsorrow Hrimsorrow will allow you to fully convert to Cold prior having any other source of conversion. The Rare affix priority is:

  1. +#% total Elemental Resistances (until capped)
  2. +# to maximum life (60)
  3. % Increased Attack Speed
  4. % of Physical Damage converted to Cold Damage

Boots

Kaom's Roots Kaom's Roots can be used since you are moving around with Leap Slam Leap Slam, which is not affected by Movement Speed. A rare pair of Boots can be also used. The Rare affix priority is:

  1. +#% total Elemental Resistances (until capped)
  2. +# to maximum life (70)
  3. % increased Maximum Life (Pristine Fossil Pristine Fossil)
  4. % increased Movement speed (not mandatory)

Belt

A well-rolled rare Stygian Vise Stygian Vise is best in slot. The Rare affix priority is:

  1. +#% total Elemental Resistances (until capped)
  2. +# to maximum life (80)
  3. % increased Elemental Damage with Attack Skills (at least 25%)
  4. % increased Cold Damage (Frigid Fossil Frigid Fossil)
  5. % increased Elemental Damage (Prismatic Fossil Prismatic Fossil)

Amulet

The Pandemonius The Pandemonius is a great choice for the build. Aul's Uprising Aul's Uprising can also be very powerful if you manage to get a Hatred Hatred mod. Both of these unique amulets can be pricey, if you cannot afford them simply use a rare amulet. The Rare affix priority is:

  1. +#% total Elemental Resistances (until capped)
  2. +# to maximum life (50)
  3. Adds # to # Physical Damage to Attacks
  4. % increased Elemental Damage with Attack Skills (at least 25%)

Rings

Mark of the Elder Mark of the Elder can be a good addition to the build. Well-rolled rare rings are also a great choice for the build, preferably Opal Ring Opal Rings. The Rare affix priority is:

  1. +#% total Elemental Resistances (until capped)
  2. +# to maximum life (50)
  3. Adds # to # Physical Damage to Attacks
  4. % increased Elemental Damage with Attack Skills (at least 25%)
  5. Assassin's Mark Assassin's Mark or Warlord's Mark Warlord's Mark on Hit

Weapons

A well rolled two-handed Physical Sword is best in slot, you should look for at least 450pDPS. Doomsower Doomsower can act as a budget version that can take you a long way.

Flasks

Diamond Flask Diamond Flask is mandatory in every Critical-based build. Divine Life Flask Divine Life Flask should used as Instant or half-Instant along with Bleeding Removal suffix. Atziri's Promise Atziri's Promise can provide a lot of damage for the build. Taste of Hate Taste of Hate can provide a lot of offense and defense for the build, but can also be expensive. The Wise Oak The Wise Oak will help you penetrate enemies’ Cold Resistances better, make sure your Cold Resistance is the highest if you choose to use this flask. You can also use any utility flask you prefer, just make sure you have Freeze, Bleed and Curse immunity rolled on them.

Be sure to check out our Flask Crafting Guide to learn everything you need to know about how to set up your non-Unique flasks.

Jewels

You will need two Fight for Survival Fight for Survival threshold jewels. A Watcher's Eye Watcher's Eye with Hatred Hatred mods can provide a lot of damage, this jewel can also be very expensive.

Regular Jewel Affix Priority

  1. % increased Maximum Life
  2. % to Critical Strike Multiplier with Cold Skills
  3. % to Critical Strike Multiplier with Two Handed Melee Weapons
  4. % increased Physical Damage with Swords
  5. % increased Attack Speed with Two Handed Melee Weapons
  6. % increased Attack Speed with Swords

Abyssal Jewel Affix Priority

  1. Maximum Life (at least 35)
  2. % chance to gain Onslaught for 4 seconds on Kill
  3. % increased Attack Speed if you’ve dealt a Critical Strike Recently
  4. Added Cold Damage to Attacks and Attacks with Swords

Leveling

As a reminder, we have several guides to help you level up a character.

The Frost Blades Slayer can be levelled with its signature skill since level 1, the build is also a decent league-starter.

Leveling Trees

This is the passive tree, which will get you through the levelling content. As in all Critical-based builds, we recommend investing into Critical Strike nodes after level 60.

Useful Leveling Unique Items

As you begin a new character, there are few unique items that can boost your power exponentially. Tabula Rasa Tabula Rasa allows you to have a 6-Linked skill as early as you get the gems. Wanderlust Wanderlust gives a decent movement speed, which will make your leveling that much more efficient. Goldrim 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.

Gem Progression

Using Tabula Rasa 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.

From level 1, you should use the following link.

  1. Frost Blades Frost Blades
  2. Onslaught Support Onslaught Support

At level 4, you should add Ancestral Protector Ancestral Protector, War Banner War Banner and Frost Bomb Frost Bomb for better single target damage. Your Frost Blades Frost Blades should look like this.

  1. Frost Blades Frost Blades
  2. Onslaught Support Onslaught Support
  3. Ancestral Call Support Ancestral Call Support

At level 8, your Frost Blades Frost Blades should look like this.

  1. Frost Blades Frost Blades
  2. Onslaught Support Onslaught Support
  3. Ancestral Call Support Ancestral Call Support
  4. Added Cold Damage Support Added Cold Damage Support

At level 10, you should add Leap Slam Leap Slam for additional mobility.

At level 16, you should add Herald of Ice Herald of Ice for additional damage.

By level 18, your Frost Blades Frost Blades should look like this.

  1. Frost Blades Frost Blades
  2. Onslaught Support Onslaught Support
  3. Ancestral Call Support Ancestral Call Support
  4. Elemental Damage with Attacks Support Elemental Damage with Attacks Support
  5. Added Cold Damage Support Added Cold Damage Support

At level 24, you should Hatred Hatred for additional damage.

At level 28, you can replace Ancestral Protector Ancestral Protector with Ancestral Warchief Ancestral Warchief.

By level 31, your Frost Blades Frost Blades should look like this.

  1. Frost Blades Frost Blades
  2. Onslaught Support Onslaught Support
  3. Ancestral Call Support Ancestral Call Support
  4. Elemental Damage with Attacks Support Elemental Damage with Attacks Support
  5. Hypothermia Support Hypothermia Support
  6. Added Cold Damage Support Added Cold Damage Support

FAQ

What map mods are impossible to do?

Elemental Reflect is impossible to do; you can do Physical Reflect without any issue since you fully convert to Cold.

What content is the build good at and what it is bad at?

The Frost Blades Slayer excels at clearing super fast. It is bad at running Labyrinths, and it is also slower when fighting tough bosses, compared to boss killers.

Conclusion

The Frost Blades Slayer is a two handed Sword build that excels at dealing tons of Cold damage from mid-range. The build has great clear speed along with very respectable single target and survivability.

Changelog
  •   

    Revisited and updated for Blight 3.8. The build practically remains unchanged; the Crit version is slightly nerfed via changes to the Overwhelm ascendancy node.

  •   

    Build added.

  1. Posts
    9

    what is the orded for the skill tree

  2. Posts
    9

    how can i link leap slam with 4 other gems , shoul i use it on the 6 linked sword ???

  3. Vvckd

    Moderator

    Posts
    467

    On 22/07/2019 at 12:13 AM, brenomwm123 said

    how can i link leap slam with 4 other gems , shoul i use it on the 6 linked sword ???

    I linked Whirling Blades Whirling Blades instead of Leap Slam Leap Slam by mistake, it is now fixed, I apologise.

  4. Posts
    9

    On 22/07/2019 at 6:06 AM, Vvckd said

    On 22/07/2019 at 12:13 AM, brenomwm123 said

    how can i link leap slam with 4 other gems , shoul i use it on the 6 linked sword ???


    no problem man

    I linked Whirling Blades Whirling Blades instead of Leap Slam Leap Slam by mistake, it is now fixed, I apologise.

  5. Posts
    9

    im a very new player in the game , so i dont understand most of the things yet , could you add to the guide a final build itens ? like everithing max linked and what gems in each piece of armor , i really would apreciate , thank you a lot for the guide, im lvl 40 and im loving the build <3

  6. Posts
    9

    On 21/07/2019 at 1:50 PM, Vvckd said

    On 21/07/2019 at 4:28 AM, brenomwm123 said

    what is the orded for the skill tree

    Hey, follow the levelling passive skill tree and then start investing into the Sword Crit nodes that are present in the endgame passive skill tree.

    in the late game should i remove the nodes from cold dmg ?

    Edited by Vlad on July 31st, 2019

  7. Vvckd

    Moderator

    Posts
    467

    On 22/07/2019 at 5:05 PM, brenomwm123 said

    im a very new player in the game , so i dont understand most of the things yet , could you add to the guide a final build itens ? like everithing max linked and what gems in each piece of armor , i really would apreciate , thank you a lot for the guide, im lvl 40 and im loving the build <3

    Hey, first of all thanks for the kind feedback. When it comes to endgame “min-maxed” characters in Path of Exile, with time you will realise it is really hard to provide such information, since you can have a perfect gear for the particular character, but that works just for bossing, or just for clearing, or Delve etc. We focus on giving one or few recommendations per item slot, which helps players choose based on their personal liking and content they are doing. If you have any specific questions I would love to help but providing a full list of perfect gear is an unrealistic goal you would aim for, especially if you are a new player.

  8. Posts
    9

    in the leveling skill tree we get winter spirit nodes , in the late game they dissapear , we respec them out ???

  9. Vvckd

    Moderator

    Posts
    467

    On 24/07/2019 at 12:38 AM, brenomwm123 said

    in the leveling skill tree we get winter spirit nodes , in the late game they dissapear , we respec them out ???

    Hey, Winter Spirit is used early on in order to support your full conversion to Cold, after that you can use other sources of conversion (as the mod on Gloves) and save up these unnecessary passive points.

  10. Posts
    9

    can you add the final gems of the build ? like with everithing max linked , all the gems and support gems , like eyou did with the lap slam and frost blads , but to all gems , i would really apreciate , thx man

  11. Vvckd

    Moderator

    Posts
    467

    On 24/07/2019 at 4:22 PM, brenomwm123 said

    can you add the final gems of the build ? like with everithing max linked , all the gems and support gems , like eyou did with the lap slam and frost blads , but to all gems , i would really apreciate , thx man

    These are pretty much the only two links you will need, all of the other gems shown in the 5.3 Other Gems section can be used non-linked.

  12. Posts
    9

    i have 2 six links , kondo and the lore , im using the blade vortex on kondo , what can i use on the lore 6 links ?

  13. Vvckd

    Moderator

    Posts
    467

    On 25/07/2019 at 5:49 AM, brenomwm123 said

    i have 2 six links , kondo and the lore , im using the blade vortex on kondo , what can i use on the lore 6 links ?

    Why would you use Blade Vortex Blade Vortex in this build?

    Edited by Vvckd on July 26th, 2019

  14. Posts
    9

    On 26/07/2019 at 5:50 AM, Vvckd said

    On 25/07/2019 at 5:49 AM, brenomwm123 said

    i have 2 six links , kondo and the lore , im using the blade vortex on kondo , what can i use on the lore 6 links ?

    Why would you use Blade Vortex Blade Vortex in this build?

    woopsie , i mean frost blades , i have the frost blades om the sword 6l , and i have a spare 6 link on the chest , what could i fit there

    Edited by Damien on July 31st, 2019

  15. Posts
    2

    I might be missing something but how do you achieve the full cold conversion with this?

  16. Vvckd

    Moderator

    Posts
    467

    On 11/08/2019 at 10:14 PM, Jaytheproduct said

    I might be missing something but how do you achieve the full cold conversion with this?

    This is achieved with specific gear in the endgame, but early on simply get Winter Spirit on the passive tree.

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