Glacial Hammer Berserker Build Guide (PoE Legion 3.7)

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Introduction

The Glacial Hammer Berserker dual wields Frostbreath Frostbreath Maces in order to deal immense amounts of Cold damage with melee attacks. The build has the ability to Freeze everything in its path and can be very budget-friendly early on. We choose the Berserker for the ascendancy class because we take a great advantage of the Rage mechanic and also solve our Leech issues along with gaining great amount of extra damage via Aspect of Carnage.

Build Summary

All you need for the build is two Frostbreath Frostbreaths along with one or two Winter Burial Winter Burial Jewels, which will allow you to drop Melee Splash Support Melee Splash Support and use a damage multiplier instead. Overall, on other gear pieces we aim to stack as much Elemental damage with Attacks as possible along with added Cold damage. Since the build picks a great amount of Life on the passive skill tree we would easily reach over 6k Life.

Pros & Cons

Pros

+ Hardcore viable
+ Cheap to start
+ Very reliable Freezes

Cons

- Dies to Elemental Reflect

Playstyle

Offensively, you should Leap Slam Leap Slam into packs of monsters and shatter them with one or two hits. Against tougher foes you can augment your damage by using Frost Bomb Frost Bomb and Ancestral Warchief Ancestral Warchief.

Defensively, most of the time you will freeze everything in your path without enemies even having the chance to strike back at you. Once you get hit you have a very reliable source of Life leech via Berserker’s Pain Reaver.

For playstyle, you should recklessly leap into packs of monsters and Freeze them to death. Berserk Berserk should be used at full Rage whenever you need to mitigate more damage or deal a great amount of burst damage.

Ascendancy, Passive Tree, Bandits, and Pantheons

Ascendancy (Marauder – Berserker)

  1. Pain Reaver
  2. Crave the Slaughter
  3. Aspect of Carnage
  4. Rite of Ruin

Pain Reaver provides all the Life and Mana leech you will ever need, along with a great amount of Attack Speed whenever you get hit, along with greater Life leech effect whenever you get hit hard.

Crave the Slaughter gives you the ability to gain Rage, which increases your overall damage and speed.

Aspect of Carnage multiplies your overall damage by almost a half at the cost of taking more damage yourself.

Rite of Ruin turns you into a frenzied warrior that moves around extremely fast but takes some damage over time, which is easily mitigated via Life Regeneration and Life leech.

Passive Tree

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

We mainly focus on picking Resolute Technique along with Life and efficient damage nodes. The reason we skip nodes with one-hand Physical damage and Mace nodes is because we do not scale our damage via Physical but mainly by having a good amount of added flat Cold damage to attacks, which is twice as efficient when using Frostbreath Frostbreaths.

Bandits

For this specific build we should Kill All in Act II. The 2 passive nodes are more beneficial than the bonuses that bandits offer.

Pantheons

Major: Soul of Lunaris is a great Pantheon choice for the build, as it provides important Movement Speed along with additional Physical damage mitigation.

Minor: Soul of Shakari – Poison immunity is always a good addition to a build. Other minor gods can be chosen depending on personal preference.

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 have killed the boss and captured his soul, you need to deliver the vessel to Sin in Oriath.

Gems

Glacial Hammer Glacial Hammer 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 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 on Kill.

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.

Glacial Hammer (6-Link)

Glacial Hammer Glacial Hammer is a melee skill with very high base damage and applies extremely reliable Freezing and Chilling effects on enemies. Winter Burial Winter Burial acts as a free Melee Splash Support Melee Splash Support link, which essentially allows us to run the skill on a 7 or even 8-Link if we have a Body Armour with Maim Support Maim Support. We recommend two different links for both clearing and single target.

For clearing, use the following link.

  1. Glacial Hammer Glacial Hammer
  2. Ancestral Call Support Ancestral Call Support
  3. Multistrike Support Multistrike 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

For single target, use the following link.

  1. Glacial Hammer Glacial Hammer
  2. Multistrike Support Multistrike Support
  3. Elemental Damage with Attacks Support Elemental Damage with Attacks Support
  4. Hypothermia Support Hypothermia Support
  5. Added Cold Damage Support Added Cold Damage Support
  6. Cold Penetration Support Cold Penetration Support

Leap Slam (4-Link)

Leap Slam Leap Slam is your mobility skill which will let you dodge lethal game mechanics and make you more time-efficient in general. You will also gain the Fortify for additional damage mitigation whenever you land on enemies.

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

Ancestral Warchief (4-Link)

Vaal Ancestral Warchief Vaal Ancestral Warchief can improve your single target damage output by a great deal, even on a 4-Link.

  1. Vaal Ancestral Warchief Vaal Ancestral Warchief
  2. Elemental Damage with Attacks Support Elemental Damage with Attacks Support
  3. Hypothermia Support Hypothermia Support
  4. Added Cold Damage Support Added Cold Damage Support

Other Gems

You can socket in Blood Rage Blood Rage for additional attack speed. Steelskin Steelskin can be used as another layer of defense, it should be activated manually. Hatred Hatred and Herald of Ice Herald of Ice will give you a lot of Cold damage. War Banner War Banner will help out with its Adrenaline buff. Drop Frost Bomb Frost Bomb on the ground against tanky enemies. Berserk Berserk should be used at full Rage whenever you need to mitigate more damage or deal a great amount of burst damage.

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.

Helmet

A rare Helmet is best in slot for the build; for labyrinth enchant look for any Glacial Hammer Glacial Hammer enchant or Blood Rage Blood Rage‘s additional Attack Speed. 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. If you choose to play with a rare Body Armour, look for high 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. Socketed Gems are supported by Level 1 Maim (Serrated Fossil Serrated Fossil)

Gloves

Southbound Southbound are very cheap unique Gloves that synergize extremely well with the build. The Rare affix priority is:

  1. +#% total Elemental Resistances (until capped)
  2. +# to maximum life (80)
  3. % Increased Attack Speed

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 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 (Intelligence) Aul's Uprising (Intelligence) can also be very powerful if you manage to get a Hatred Hatred mod. Both of these unique Amulets can be pricey, so 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 # Cold Damage to Attacks
  4. % increased Elemental Damage with Attack Skills (at least 25%)

Rings

Well rolled rare rings are also a great choice for the build, preferably Opal Ring Opal Rings. You can also look for rings with the Delve mod “Curse enemies with Level # Frostbite on Hit”. The Rare affix priority is:

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

Weapons

The weapons of choice we choose to dual wield are Frostbreath Frostbreath. These Maces allows our added Cold damage to attacks to be twice as efficient while also improving our Chill duration.

Flasks

Divine Life Flask Divine Life Flask should used as Instant or half-Instant along with Bleeding Removal suffix. 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.

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 Winter Burial Winter Burial threshold Jewels that will help you fully convert to Cold, which will not only be more efficient for you damage scaling overall, but will also allow you to run Physical Reflect maps. A Watcher's Eye Watcher's Eye with Hatred Hatred mods can provide a lot of damage, this jewel can also be very expensive. Since the build scales extremely well with flat Cold damage added to attacks, try to get as many of these Abyssal Jewels as you can.

Regular Jewel Affix Priority

  1. % increased Maximum Life
  2. % increased Attack Speed while Dual Wielding
  3. % increased Attack Speed with One Handed Melee Weapons
  4. % increased Attack Speed with Maces

Abyssal Jewel Affix Priority

  1. Maximum Life (at least 35)
  2. Adds # to # Cold Damage to Mace Attacks
  3. Adds # to # Cold Damage to Attacks

Leveling

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

The Glacial Hammer Berserker can be leveled with its signature skill since level 1. It might feel clunky until you are able to equip the two Frostbreath Frostbreath Maces at level 50, so we will provide a leveling section that uses Frost Blades Frost Blades instead of Glacial Hammer Glacial Hammer, since the skill is better for leveling overall.

Leveling Trees

This is the passive tree, which will get you through the leveling content.

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. Dash Dash will improve your overall mobility by a great deal. 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. Cannot Leech is also problematic and should be skipped.

Conclusion

The Glacial Hammer Berserker is an attack-based melee character that excels at doing big amounts of Cold damage via swift attacks; the build easily freezes most enemies in its path and has a very responsive and active playstyle.

Changelog
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