This build is not updated for the current patch, but we have evaluated it and we consider it to still work as intended. You can try it out, but you may find slight differences between this guide and the current game state. Although viable, this build is not considered strong enough to be an optimal play choice during this league.
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 Ignite Incinerate Elementalist specializes in burning enemies to death with channelled Fire damage. Incinerate is a channelling Fire spell that deals initial damage and then releases a powerful wave of Fire that has 100% Chance to Ignite. You can easily clear trash mobs by simply channelling and then release the powerful final wave in order to apply a strong Ignite on tough rares or bosses.
For the ascendancy class we choose Elementalist, simply because it has great synergy with Ignite overall, and since we are not Critical-based it is better than Inquisitor. Trickster is also a good choice but as the Elementalist we gain more value from all the skills and gem setups we choose to use.
The build is super budget-friendly and can even be used as a league-starter. Depending on the Ignite very early on can feel kind of clunky, but once you hit level 38 and you can use Ignite Proliferation Support you are ready to heavily invest into it. When it comes to endgame item choices, The Searing Touch is a great weapon for the build. Having your main skill in the weapon also allows you to use Kaom's Heart for a greater Life pool. Acquiring the Helmet enchant for Incinerate can also be very beneficial for your overall damage potential. Of course, these are only recommendations and the build works properly without any of them.
Pros & Cons
+ Hardcore viable
+ Good endgame potential
+ Cheap to start
- DoT builds are not for everyone
- Does not have great Life sustain
Offensively, your goal is to Ignite a pack of monsters, which will die shortly after. For tougher rares and bosses you can drop down Storm Brand, which will lower enemies’ elemental resistances by a great deal via the Elemental Overload keystone and Curse on Hit gem setup. Flame Dash will allow you to move around quickly.
Defensively, having a decent Life pool and good use of Steelskin will allow you to survive hairy situations. Playing a DoT build allows you to hit once every couple of seconds and then be very mobile, dodging lethal game mechanics etc.
For playstyle, most of the time you will burn down enemies without worrying about dropping down Storm Brand. When you encounter tankier enemies, simply charge up a maximum stage Incinerate in order to apply a strong Ignite.
Here is what your endgame passive skill tree should look like. We manage to achieve 180%+ Increased Maximum Life, which is very respectable for a Life-based caster build. We also pick all the efficient Fire and Burning damage nodes on the tree along with Elemental Overload, which has great uptime because of how frequently Incinerate and Storm Brand hit.
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|
|Weapon||The Searing Touch|
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.
You can level with Incinerate and rely on Ignite from the beginning, but it might feel clunky, since the Ignite mechanic scales well into late game. Tabula Rasa will carry you until you are able to wield The Searing Touch.
This is the passive skill tree you should follow early on. First, you should head to Heart of Flame and Breath of Flames, then pick Explosive Impact and Purity of Flesh. After that pick Elemental Overload and the life and damage nodes near the Templar starting area.
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. Lifesprig will boost your damage by a great deal early on.
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.
From level 1, you should use the following link.
At level 8, your Freezing Pulse link should look like this.
At level 10, you should add Flame Dash for better mobility.
- Infused Channelling Support
- Combustion Support
- Efficacy Support
- Deadly Ailments Support
- Faster Casting Support
At level 16, you should add Herald of Ash for additional damage.
At level 24, you should add Malevolence for more damage.
At level 38, you can finally use all the support gems in your main link.
- Ignite Proliferation Support
- Infused Channelling Support
- Efficacy Support
- Deadly Ailments Support
- Burning Damage Support
What map mods are impossible to do?
You will most likely one-shot yourself on Elemental Reflect. No Regeneration maps will also be very hard to do and will force you to use a Mana flask. Besides that everything else should be fine as long as you don’t have too many nasty mods on the same map.
Why Elementalist and not Trickster?
The Elementalist allows us to take advantage of Chill and Shock and has more Fire Penetration. The Witch also has an advantage on the passive skill tree with its starting point compared to Shadow (for this particular build).
The Ignite Incinerate Elementalist specializes in inflicting very strong damage over time Burn effects on enemies. If you like the sorcerer play style of casting powerful magic this build might suit you well.