Path of Building
Find our recommended Passive Skill Tree from the comfort of Path of Building, available here.
Included in the Path of Building are skill trees, all gem links and possible variations, and an example set of mid-level gear with room for upgrades. For simplicity’s sake, Elemental Resistances are not included on gear, and you can fill them in as you like depending on available gear.
We use the Path of Building Community Fork for all of our builds, which is highly recommended. If you are encountering errors importing the build, please ensure you are .
Passive Skill Trees
Though there is typically little variance in melee skill trees, there are a few unique aspects to this one:
- unless you have a means of generating Fortification. Eventually the Fortify Mastery will automatically generate this on melee hits, however, the reduced -3 Fortification necessitates that Steadfast must be taken in order to reach 20+ Fortification.
- You may want to take Resolute Technique while leveling and respec out of it and into Critical Strike later on, when you reach maps.
- Refer to the Ascendancy Recommendations for pathing — this tree shows and not the keystones you should take if you are league starting or leveling up.
- Save Impale and Jewel Sockets for some of the latter upgrades.
- Cluster Jewel is optional but it should have 2 Jewel Sockets to place regular jewels in for damage. Recommended notables are Devastator, Feed the Fury, and Smite the Weak.
- Adjust nodes as necessary to meet Dexterity and Accuracy limitations. Eagle Eye can be very strong if you aren’t running Precision, however, check Path of Building to tailor your Accuracy to your own character and don’t overcap unnecessarily.
Early Game: Vaal Pact and Mana Leech
Early on it is unlikely you will have access to Atziri's Acuity or -Mana Cost rings. In order to circumvent this, path manually from Titanic Impacts to the right and take Vaal Pact and the first point in the Vitality Void wheel (4 point investment). This will solve Mana issues and also allow you to take full advantage of your overleech potential. Optionally, you can invest another 2 points into Vitality Void itself to further improve your leech and maximum.
Cyclone is our main skill for both bossing and clear, and as such is the only 6-Link in our build. The links are somewhat flexible, and can be adjusted to suit your preferences and the situation.
Moving through maps is quite quick due to Leap Slam and Phase Run. Blood Rage provides additional leech as well as Frenzy Charges during clear. For auras we use the typical choices for most Physical melee builds; Pride, Blood and Sand, and Herald of Purity. This grants a good combination of damage and defense, and we can also incorporate the active component of a Vaal aura for even more in one of these departments. We recommend either Vaal Grace or Vaal Haste.
- Awakened Brutality Support
- Infused Channelling Support
- Awakened Melee Physical Damage Support
- Impale Support
- Damage on Full Life Support (optional)
Damage on Full Life can be extremely powerful but for obvious reasons is only advised if you feel stable at full life with your overleech. If you’re undergeared or attempting extremely dangerous content where you will regularly be playing catch-up it may be prudent to swap it out with another gem. Other options for a final link:
- Concentrated Effect Support: Absolute maximum boss damage. Can be swapped with Increased Area of Effect Support for clearing.
- Pulverise Support: Slightly better damage than Impale Support and better clear, but less damage for bosses. Recommended if you do not plan to do bossing much and want absolute maximum clear speed.
- Close Combat Support: Popular choice but not our preference. Generally offers less damage than other options as you often want to play to the edges of your Cyclone radius in dangerous situations, as well as having natural counter synergy with Lion's Roar.
If you color your weapon with white sockets using Vorici on the Research division of the Syndicate, it opens the option to use Concentrated Effect Support for bossing, and Pulverise Support for clearing.
Leap Slam 4-Link
This is our preferred mobility skill and can be adjusted to suit your preference. , you should swap out Endurance Charge on Melee Stun Support with either War Banner or Blood and Sand, whichever you chose not to run.
- Leap Slam
- Faster Attacks Support
- Endurance Charge on Melee Stun Support or Precision (only viable with high level Enlighten Support in Aura link)
- Preferred Vaal Skill
Maim Support is not necessary, but it is a noticeable damage increase.
Since we have a large amount of Armour, Molten Shell is actually quite a potent choice. If your focus is clearing and mapping with some bossing, this is our recommended skill. If your focus is instead farming Uber Elder, we recommend Immortal Call.
- Cast when Damage Taken Support (Level 2)
- Molten Shell (Level 11) OR Immortal Call (Level 4)
- Blood Rage (Level 20)
- Dread Banner (Level 20) or War Banner (Level 20)
Either banner is a fine choice and they fall within a relatively close margin on DPS gain. Dread Banner adds a bit of survivability and excels on longer fights, such as Uber Elder or Aul the Crystal King. War Banner will be a little more damage while starting out, helps with accuracy, and a slightly better choice while clearing. Overall we feel that Dread Banner is a more well-rounded gem, especially in the late game when you have virtually capped crit chance.