Ice Crash Inquisitor Build Guide (PoE Harvest 3.11)

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Guide Format

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:

Introduction

The Ice Crash Inquisitor is a melee type of character that uses Staves in order to deal immense amounts of Cold Critical damage. Staves are an underused weapon type in Path of Exile that excels in scaling Critical Chance and Critical Multiplier. The Inquisitor greatly complements this idea by allowing you to Penetrate enemies Elemental resistances with Critical Strikes.

Ice Crash Ice Crash is a slow-attacking melee skill that has an amazing amount of base damage; ideally we aim to one-shot monster packs with a single hit. Hegemony's Era Hegemony's Era is a budget-friendly Staff that is so good it can even be your endgame weapon.

Build Summary

There is no mandatory build-enabling item that the character needs. The gear you will need is not that expensive early on, and you also have the option to heavily invest into gear later on in order to reach the build’s full potential. Hegemony's Era Hegemony's Era is a unique Staff that can carry you a very long way, which has great balance between Critical Chance, Physical damage, and Attack Speed.

Pros & Cons

Pros

+ Hardcore viable
+ Good balance between clear speed and single target damage
+ Uses Staves in order to attack, something that is not seen very often

Cons

- Can feel slow until you reach a decent amount of Attack Speed

Playstyle

Offensively, you should leap into monster packs and shatter them with a single Ice Crash Ice Crash. A Totem like Ancestral Protector Ancestral Protector will improve your single target damage by doing damage itself and giving you an Attack Speed multiplier while it is active. War Banner War Banner should be dropped against bosses in order to gain the Adrenaline buff.

Defensively, the main idea of the build is to deal tons of Cold damage via Critical Strikes, which results in long Freezing effects on the enemies. You also reach a very good amount of Life along with reliable Life Leech.

For playstyle, you should consider how Ice Crash Ice Crash works: it deals most damage with its inner ring, which then diminishes with outer rings, so in order to deal maximum amount of damage you need to be close to the enemy in order to hit it with the center of the skill.

Passive tree

Here is the endgame passive tree for the build.

For more information, be sure to check out the passive skill tree page.

Passive 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.

Ascendancy, Bandits, Pantheons Page

Gems

We go over all of the gem links this build uses in the end-game on our Gem Link page.

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.

Gear Page

Our recommendation:

Item Slot Item Name
Head Rare Helmet
Amulet Rare Amulet
Chest Loreweave Loreweave
Gloves Rare Gloves
Boots Kaom's Roots Kaom's Roots
Belt Rare Stygian Vise Stygian Vise
Rings Rare Rings
Weapon Hegemony's Era Hegemony's Era

Leveling

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

The build can be leveled with Ground Slam Ground Slam until you get Ice Crash Ice Crash at level 28.

Leveling Trees

The early passive skill tree is very straight forward. As in order build guides, we recommend transitioning to Critical Strikes around level 60 or above, at this point you should have Inevitable Judgement and you should start picking up efficient Critical nodes like Counterweight, Smashing Strikes, Disemboweling, Blunt Trauma and Serpent Stance.

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. Ground Slam Ground Slam
  2. Onslaught Support Onslaught Support
  3. Chance to Bleed Support Chance to Bleed Support

At level 4, you should add War Banner War Banner and Ancestral Protector Ancestral Protector for additional damage. Dash Dash helps out by improving your mobility early on. Molten Shell Molten Shell can be used whenever you need the damage mitigation.

By level 8, your Ground Slam Ground Slam link should look like this.

  1. Vaal Ground Slam Vaal Ground Slam
  2. Maim Support Maim Support
  3. Added Fire Damage Support Added Fire Damage Support
  4. Ruthless Support Ruthless Support
  5. Onslaught Support Onslaught Support
  6. Chance to Bleed Support Chance to Bleed 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.

By level 18, your Ground Slam Ground Slam link should look like this.

  1. Vaal Ground Slam Vaal Ground Slam
  2. Melee Physical Damage Support Melee Physical Damage Support
  3. Maim Support Maim Support
  4. Added Fire Damage Support Added Fire Damage Support
  5. Ruthless Support Ruthless Support
  6. Onslaught Support Onslaught Support

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

Finally, at level 28 you can replace Ground Slam Ground Slam with your signature skill, Ice Crash Ice Crash.

  1. Ice Crash Ice Crash
  2. Melee Physical Damage Support Melee Physical Damage Support
  3. Elemental Damage with Attacks Support Elemental Damage with Attacks Support
  4. Ruthless Support Ruthless Support
  5. Faster Attacks Support Faster Attacks Support
  6. Maim Support Maim Support

By level 38, your Ice Crash Ice Crash should look like this.

  1. Ice Crash Ice Crash
  2. Fist of War Support Fist of War Support
  3. Pulverise Support Pulverise Support
  4. Melee Physical Damage Support Melee Physical Damage Support
  5. Elemental Damage with Attacks Support Elemental Damage with Attacks Support
  6. Ruthless Support Ruthless Support

FAQ

What map mods are impossible to do?

Elemental reflect is impossible to do. No Regeneration and Cannot Leech should also be skipped.

What anoint should we go for?

Ophidian Aim is a solid anoint to go for.

Conclusion

The Ice Crash Inquisitor uses Staves in order to deal immense amounts of Cold damage via Critical Strike hits. The character is well-rounded and is decent for any type of content. It is not particularly expensive and can be budget-friendly, with the option to invest more into gear later on.

Changelog
  •   

    Revisited and updated for Harvest 3.11. The build receives a big buff via changes to Two-hand melee, Slam skills and Warcries.

  •   

    Revisited and updated for Delirium 3.10. The build's endgame potential is augmented by the addition of Cluster Jewels.

  •   

    Revisited and updated for Metamorph 3.9. The build remains as solid as before.

  •   

    Revisited and updated for Blight 3.8. The build received a very slight AoE nerf via the changes to Pulverise Support; it still remains as good as before.

  •   

    Build added.

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  1. Posts
    3

    I was wondering if the inspiration gem would be any good in the 6link ice crash for the extra else and crit it provides, can you tell me why you don’t use it?

  2. Vvckd

    Moderator

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    1746

    On 12/12/2019 at 5:25 PM, isgald said

    I was wondering if the inspiration gem would be any good in the 6link ice crash for the extra else and crit it provides, can you tell me why you don’t use it?

    Hey, Inspiration Support Inspiration Support is a great support gem and I love it. Over time I found that other gems are more consistant with the damage they provide, simply because the Inspiration charges ramp up and then you lose them. If you have some Mana issues (which should not be the case and I would be glad to help you solve that) you can use the gem, or just use it if you really like it in general.

  3. Posts
    1

    Hey I was wondering how the inquisitor version differs from Juggernaut and Berserker builds that use Ice Crash. Also, I love the guides on this site, but I was wondering why you guys don’t have PoB links? It would make it easier to compare stats and stuff like that

  4. Vvckd

    Moderator

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    1746

    On 13/12/2019 at 3:04 AM, Dogfalls said

    Hey I was wondering how the inquisitor version differs from Juggernaut and Berserker builds that use Ice Crash. Also, I love the guides on this site, but I was wondering why you guys don’t have PoB links? It would make it easier to compare stats and stuff like that

    Hey, since we aim to fully convert our damage to Cold we benefit from Inquisitor’s Inevitable Judgement 100%. The main difference is that with Inquisitor we penetrate resistances and have more damage in general, it is compareable to Berserker, but we also apply way stronger Freeze effects, which keeps us save. Juggernaut is tankier but has less damage.

  5. Posts
    3

    Is there a PoB we can use to compare dmg to the berserker, jugg and inquisitor builds?

  6. Vvckd

    Moderator

    Posts
    1746

    On 13/12/2019 at 11:52 AM, isgald said

    Is there a PoB we can use to compare dmg to the berserker, jugg and inquisitor builds?

    Hey, for now we are really invested into updating build guides and keeping them fresh. Unfortunatelly we do not create PoB links.

  7. Posts
    3

    On 13/12/2019 at 1:39 PM, Vvckd said

    On 13/12/2019 at 11:52 AM, isgald said

    Is there a PoB we can use to compare dmg to the berserker, jugg and inquisitor builds?

    Hey, for now we are really invested into updating build guides and keeping them fresh. Unfortunatelly we do not create PoB links..

    How tanky is this build? I know it will be squisher than a high but will the DMG be that much better?

    Edited by isgald on December 13th, 2019

  8. Posts
    1

    the gems are incomplete, like you forgot 6 gems and also the build page dosen’t have the gear ?!! like at least show us the gear and the other missing 6 gems, since we will get 2 sex linked things in the build the weapon and the chest armor!!!

    Edited by SEVARO on January 26th, 2020

  9. Vvckd

    Moderator

    Posts
    1746

    On 26/01/2020 at 2:21 PM, SEVARO said

    the gems are incomplete, like you forgot 6 gems and also the build page dosen’t have the gear ?!! like at least show us the gear and the other missing 6 gems, since we will get 2 sex linked things in the build the weapon and the chest armor!!!

    Hey, as this is a multi-page guide you can check out the Gem links at the appropriate page and the you have the Gear page here. I also laughed at your 2 sex linked things, sorry about that.

  10. Posts
    3

    Great Guide. New console(ps4) player. First league attempt, ssf. Level 72 and working on white tier mapping. Build is squishy. How much armor and health should I be shooting for? How much accuracy should I be running? Thanks for the help.

  11. Vvckd

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    Posts
    1746

    On 30/03/2020 at 1:39 PM, Coronet69 said

    Great Guide. New console(ps4) player. First league attempt, ssf. Level 72 and working on white tier mapping. Build is squishy. How much armor and health should I be shooting for? How much accuracy should I be running? Thanks for the help.

    Hey, with your flasks up you can easily achieve more than 10k Armour while in combat. HP will go 5k+ once you level and gear up. You should have 95%+ Chance to Hit.

  12. Posts
    1

    Hi! Thanks for the build, trying it out now in DHC.

    QQ: what’s the point of Instruments of Virtue (ascendancy node)? It’s basically just for the 20% attack speed, since there’s no spell interaction? (Or am I missing something?)

  13. Vvckd

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    Posts
    1746

    On 01/04/2020 at 12:53 PM, LTDAN said

    Hi! Thanks for the build, trying it out now in DHC.

    QQ: what’s the point of Instruments of Virtue (ascendancy node)? It’s basically just for the 20% attack speed, since there’s no spell interaction? (Or am I missing something?)

    Hey, you can easily use a Warcry, refresh your Blood Rage or even proc it with Dash.

  14. Posts
    9

    Hi !

    I’m very new to this game, and immediately liked this Inquisitor + staff build. First of all, thank you very much for your advice, such as capping resistances first !
    I had two questions about the passive skill tree you suggest:
    - why picking (near) no “increased damage on hit with staves” passives ? Is it because Ice Crash has no primary target, or another reason ?
    - Why is life leech so important that you suggest to invest 6 passive points (to reach Vitality Void, if I’m correct) in it before lvl 60 ? It looks like an heavy investment but I’m sure there are very good reasons for it !

  15. Vvckd

    Moderator

    Posts
    1746

    On 04/04/2020 at 12:12 PM, PoitelMarto said

    Hi !

    I’m very new to this game, and immediately liked this Inquisitor + staff build. First of all, thank you very much for your advice, such as capping resistances first !
    I had two questions about the passive skill tree you suggest:
    - why picking (near) no “increased damage on hit with staves” passives ? Is it because Ice Crash has no primary target, or another reason ?
    - Why is life leech so important that you suggest to invest 6 passive points (to reach Vitality Void, if I’m correct) in it before lvl 60 ? It looks like an heavy investment but I’m sure there are very good reasons for it !

    Hey, welcome to PoE! The build scales its damage by picking Two-Hander nodes, Staff nodes and Melee Crit nodes. I am not completely understanding the question but these are the primary passive tree stats, which scale the build’s damage. Without the Vitality Void and the minor Mana Leech node prior to it the build will have no source of Life and Mana leech and this is why we are going for it.

  16. Posts
    9

    Thanks for the quick answer !
    As for my first question, sorry for being unclear. I understand the focus on staves and 2-handed weapons early on, and the switch to critical once you reach Inevitable Judgement. What I meant is: the staff nodes you focus on don’t include the ‘Steel Wood Stance’ node (probably too far away ?), and within the far left big node including ‘Whirling Barrier’ and ‘Smashing Strike’, you favor block and atk speed over damage on hits. As a newb I’d have picked the solid +15% to damage, so I’m eager to learn the reason why you didn’t !

  17. Vvckd

    Moderator

    Posts
    1746

    On 04/04/2020 at 5:49 PM, PoitelMarto said

    Thanks for the quick answer !
    As for my first question, sorry for being unclear. I understand the focus on staves and 2-handed weapons early on, and the switch to critical once you reach Inevitable Judgement. What I meant is: the staff nodes you focus on don’t include the ‘Steel Wood Stance’ node (probably too far away ?), and within the far left big node including ‘Whirling Barrier’ and ‘Smashing Strike’, you favor block and atk speed over damage on hits. As a newb I’d have picked the solid +15% to damage, so I’m eager to learn the reason why you didn’t !

    Hey, Steel Wood Stance is not worth picking while the others are present in the endgame passive tree.

  18. Posts
    3

    Hello Again,

    Still playing around with this build and made it to level 89 (SSF), but it has been a bit painful dealing with tier 8+ maps (avoiding reflect). Hoping you can provide some more help.

    I have 4.7k life, 5.5k armour and 4.3k evasion (no real ES). Elemental Resistances are capped, I have a decent 5 link Maelstrom Storm (I like the 2% extra block, btw) and buffed effective crit chance (per PoB) is 47% with a 409% crit multiple. Character sheet shows 100k ice crash (PoB shows total DPS 170k). I also have all 8 ascendancy points.

    Link here: https://www.pathofexile.com/account/sony/view-profile/Coronet69/characters

    I struggle with survivability. I made picked up Faith and Steel on the passive tree and switched to Starkona’a Head to try to help. I will be face rolling though a map, leap slamming into packs, popping Molten Armour, Lion’s Roar and a Basalt Flask (of Iron Skin) as need, and everything is just melting. Then BOOM!, a rogue exile, or some random rare will pop up and 2 shot me. Happened 3 times within an hour last night. Same issues delving in the 90-95 range. What am I missing?

    Another question, I don’t understand the importance of getting 100% physical converted to cold. Even without the gloves enchant or the unique weapon, 88% of my damage is converted to cold (per PoB) because of herald of ice. Is the 12% cold damage really worth the effort to track down the enchant and getting/linking the unique or is that more of a min/max thing?

    Keep up the good work on this and the other guides.

  19. Vvckd

    Moderator

    Posts
    1746

    On 27/04/2020 at 9:57 PM, Coronet69 said

    Hello Again,

    Still playing around with this build and made it to level 89 (SSF), but it has been a bit painful dealing with tier 8+ maps (avoiding reflect). Hoping you can provide some more help.

    I have 4.7k life, 5.5k armour and 4.3k evasion (no real ES). Elemental Resistances are capped, I have a decent 5 link Maelstrom Storm (I like the 2% extra block, btw) and buffed effective crit chance (per PoB) is 47% with a 409% crit multiple. Character sheet shows 100k ice crash (PoB shows total DPS 170k). I also have all 8 ascendancy points.

    Link here: https://www.pathofexile.com/account/sony/view-profile/Coronet69/characters

    I struggle with survivability. I made picked up Faith and Steel on the passive tree and switched to Starkona’a Head to try to help. I will be face rolling though a map, leap slamming into packs, popping Molten Armour, Lion’s Roar and a Basalt Flask (of Iron Skin) as need, and everything is just melting. Then BOOM!, a rogue exile, or some random rare will pop up and 2 shot me. Happened 3 times within an hour last night. Same issues delving in the 90-95 range. What am I missing?

    Another question, I don’t understand the importance of getting 100% physical converted to cold. Even without the gloves enchant or the unique weapon, 88% of my damage is converted to cold (per PoB) because of herald of ice. Is the 12% cold damage really worth the effort to track down the enchant and getting/linking the unique or is that more of a min/max thing?

    Keep up the good work on this and the other guides.

    Hey, you can avoid reflect by simply rerolling the map. Majority of builds have to avoid reflect mods any ways. I am sure you can get a much better Staff than that but for the time being it does the work. Your Belt and Body Armour should be replaced as soon as possible. The Amulet provides a good amount of damage but has not Life at all. Your flasks are kind of a mess and you can do much better in that department. Getting 100% conversion means you will benefit from all the elemental damage multipliers fully while also keeping your freezes even more effective.

    Thanks for the kind feedback. Focus on crafting and linking a new staff, make sure it is high enough iLvl so it can roll the high mods. Using fossils can prove to be quite effective. Respect for going SSF.

  20. Posts
    3

    On 28/04/2020 at 10:57 AM, Vvckd said

    On 27/04/2020 at 9:57 PM, Coronet69 said

    Hello Again,

    Still playing around with this build and made it to level 89 (SSF), but it has been a bit painful dealing with tier 8+ maps (avoiding reflect). Hoping you can provide some more help.

    I have 4.7k life, 5.5k armour and 4.3k evasion (no real ES). Elemental Resistances are capped, I have a decent 5 link Maelstrom Storm (I like the 2% extra block, btw) and buffed effective crit chance (per PoB) is 47% with a 409% crit multiple. Character sheet shows 100k ice crash (PoB shows total DPS 170k). I also have all 8 ascendancy points.

    Link here: https://www.pathofexile.com/account/sony/view-profile/Coronet69/characters

    I struggle with survivability. I made picked up Faith and Steel on the passive tree and switched to Starkona’a Head to try to help. I will be face rolling though a map, leap slamming into packs, popping Molten Armour, Lion’s Roar and a Basalt Flask (of Iron Skin) as need, and everything is just melting. Then BOOM!, a rogue exile, or some random rare will pop up and 2 shot me. Happened 3 times within an hour last night. Same issues delving in the 90-95 range. What am I missing?

    Another question, I don’t understand the importance of getting 100% physical converted to cold. Even without the gloves enchant or the unique weapon, 88% of my damage is converted to cold (per PoB) because of herald of ice. Is the 12% cold damage really worth the effort to track down the enchant and getting/linking the unique or is that more of a min/max thing?

    Keep up the good work on this and the other guides.

    Hey, you can avoid reflect by simply rerolling the map. Majority of builds have to avoid reflect mods any ways. I am sure you can get a much better Staff than that but for the time being it does the work. Your Belt and Body Armour should be replaced as soon as possible. The Amulet provides a good amount of damage but has not Life at all. Your flasks are kind of a mess and you can do much better in that department. Getting 100% conversion means you will benefit from all the elemental damage multipliers fully while also keeping your freezes even more effective.

    Thanks for the kind feedback. Focus on crafting and linking a new staff, make sure it is high enough iLvl so it can roll the high mods. Using fossils can prove to be quite effective. Respect for going SSF.

    A couple quick follow ups:

    On the body armor, other than resistance and life, what should I be looking for? The other affixes listed in the guide assume an elder base which don’t drop on the level of maps I am working on.

    On flasks, other than the Taste of Hate and Diamond Flask (that have not dropped), what do you recommend?

    Thanks again.

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