• Shredder: Dual Wield Physical Damage Build

    After patch 1.0.0 (PoE release) my old build got nerfed significantly. It required quite a lot of changes to be viable again and just didn’t have the same flavor. Nevertheless I decided to stick with it as pretty much every other build is boring to play for me. The old goals of the build are still the same: making a strong melee character with high survivability who is able to solo any content in the game. Despite strong nerfs the build still manages to do plenty of DPS and is even stronger than before in terms of survivability, but does require more expensive equipment to work as well.

    I based the build on the Duelist class, but you can also adapt the skill tree slightly to work with Marauders, Templars, Scions and even Rangers.

    Shredder - Dual wield physical damage buildContents:

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  • [Outdated] Dual Wield Physical Damage Duelist/Marauder Build

    Dual Wield Physical Damage Duelist & Marauder Build

    Dual Wield Physical Damage Duelist & Marauder BuildAfter leveling several characters and even more full respecs I’ve had trouble finding a fun and effective build that I wanted to play with. That is until I decided to make my own dual-wielding Duelist class build focused on Dual Strike and Cleave as main DPS tools. The point was to make a melee character with strong DPS and even better survivability to be able to solo any content in Path of Exile.

    Note that this build (which I named The Shredder) can easily be used on a Marauder as well with barely any adaptations. More on that below.


    Important note: the build on this page is outdated. See this post for an updated version of the Shredder after the patch 1.0.0 nerfs to Cleave!


    Contents:

    Why Dual Strike & Cleave

    Dual Strike deals massive single-target damage and doesn’t need a 6-link item to be effective. With fairly decent weapons my Dual Strike deals 12k DPS with only 3 support gems (no +quality). You can easily obtain 4-link items throughout leveling and you will quickly notice how fast and easy it is to speed through levels with this build.

    My Cleave currently deals 8k DPS, also with only three support gems again without +quality. It’s a good AoE tool to dispense groups of monsters and you will be using it a lot.

    I haven’t found any other abilities which would work even nearly as well as Dual Strike and Cleave.

    Pros

    • Not dependent on gear: you don’t need any specific expensive unique items to make this work. There are a couple that help greatly but they aren’t necessary to make the build work.
    • No 5 or 6 link items required: that’s right, you can deal tons of damage without having to spend a single exalted on an expensive chest.
    • High survivability: with Kaom’s Heart chest I currently have 5k health which is enough to survive in a majority of high-level maps. My resistances are maxed but with my build you can easily put just one or two points into specific elemental resistance if you’re lacking. I’m running Grace (evasion) and Determination (armor) auras and have 67% physical damage reduction at level 86, along with 38% block chance (dual wield).
    • Defensive skill tree build: most points are put into defensive stats for increased armor, health and resists. If you end up hating the build for some reason you could easily change the build to something else entirely with 10-20 regrets.
    • Great mobility: Leap Slam and +30% movement speed help you get wherever you want to faster, or even jump out of tough situations.
    • Versatility: you can do any kind of maps; you are virtually unaffected by reflect which is the bane of many other builds. Even Blood Magic maps are easily done, you just need to be a bit more careful due to low armor (since you won’t be able to use Determination).
    • Fun to play: obviously everyone enjoys different things, but dying constantly isn’t fun for me which is why I prefer this build. Also shredding everything in your path with 8 attacks per second is unbelievably entertaining to watch.

    Cons

    • Needs high health and resist gear: fortunately these are the only two stats you need to focus on. If you desperately need a specific resistance you can always put one or two points into the skill tree. Nearly all of your gear should have +health, until (or if) you get Kaom’s Heart at which point you can focus on anything else (chaos resist, damage, IIR/IIQ).
    • Needs one mana leech item: you will need gloves, ring or amulet with 2% mana leech. It’s not hard to get but you may have to sacrifice more useful stats because of it.
    • Half regen maps: you might have somewhat decreased DPS in half-regen maps due to the inability to leech mana at a normal rate (funnily enough no regen maps can be done without issues).
    • Low IIQ/IIR: it’s hard to get Increased Item Rarity and Quantity on equipment for this build, but then again every build except dual spark totem has the same issue.

    Of all the builds I’ve seen I have to say that this one may very well be the one with least downsides. You have plenty of damage, you’re incredibly durable, fast to level up, works great even with average equipment, and no particular monsters are a problem.

    Passive Skill Tree

    My current level 86 passive skill tree build (104 points). It’s for the Duelist class but as you can see it goes all the way to the Marauder starting points and can be used by either class.

    Key points: take health, dual wield block chance, armor, and resistances. There’s only about 10 points into pure damage and regardless you will have more than enough of it. If you’re needing an extra few points you can always take away a couple from damage and put into a specific elemental resistance (next to Diamond Skin in Marauder section).

    Skill tree progression

    There’s no clear benefits to playing either of these classes each one has its own advantages. Marauders can get to resistances and Resolute Technique earlier, Duelist can pick up Block Chance and more damage. I recommend you play whatever class you prefer, you can get to most important skill points early enough to enable the build to work well with either one.

    Note that the skill point progression is more of a suggestion or a guideline rather than set in stone. If you’re needing extra armor while leveling don’t be afraid to go for it, it’s always just a couple of points away. If you need extra Intellect you can also pick up Ancestral Knowledge (Marauder) or Wisdom of the Glade (Duelist) earlier, and you can always remove the points if you don’t need them later on. A huge upside to this build is its flexibility, and you will get about 15 respec points throughout leveling from quests which will be more than enough to fiddle around with a few points as you see fit.

    As a sidenote, if you want to maximize your experience gain read my leveling guide. With my build you won’t even need a group, they’ll just slow you down.

    Keystones:

    • Iron Reflexes: converts all your evasion rating into armour. It maximizes the benefits you get from both armor and evasion on gear, passive skill points that further increase it and Grace and Determination auras. Your physical damage reduction won’t be under 50% even with the worst of gear. I mainly prefer armor over evasion due to its consistency: it’s better to get hit for low damage than for high damage every other time. You can always react with flasks, Molten Shell or just run away if you’re taking too much damage, while with evasion you’re typically dead if you don’t dodge several times in a row.
    • Unwavering Stance: with this point you can no longer be stunned, and if you have Alpha’s Howl (pictured below with equipment) you can’t get frozen either. You’re literally unstoppable.
    • Resolute Technique: there’s no point in worrying about +accuracy and +critical on your equipment or worse in your passive skill tree. It’s a waste of stat, and potential damage you lose from not being able to critically strike is more than made up for by never missing attacks. Try to get to RT as fast as possible. It also makes sure your mana leech is consistent.

    Other notes

    • Expertise (+30 Dexterity above Marauder starting location): I needed extra +dex to equip a weapon: one of my weapons requires 212 Dexterity and this build doesn’t waste any points into it. If you don’t find the need for it feel free to put a point (or three) elsewhere.
    • Just below expertise you can put a point into Ancestral Knowledge if you wish to level up your Hatred aura further, although it’s not necessary. There is already one +30 Int point, Wisdom of the Glade, which is necessary.
    • Why no Blood Magic? Because we can’t run three auras with it. Plus it’s not necessary as Mana Leech covers all ability costs.
    • Why Celerity (+8% movement speed)? It’s just one extra point and I like to move fast.
    • Why 1 point into Lightning resistance? I’m at 68% lightning resistance currently so this point makes up for lack of it on my equipment.

    Recommended Equipment

    As mentioned very few specific items are required. Once you start farming maps focus on getting as much health as you possibly can and try to max out your resistances. If you need a mana leech item just buy a ring or an amulet for 1 chaos. Using a Mana Leech gem is a possibility, but it will drop your DPS significantly unless you have a 5/6-linked chest.

    Two items which are amazing for this build are Alpha’s Howl head and Kaom’s Heart chest.

    Alpha's HowlAlpha’s Howl

    Once you get it you will be able to run Hatred Aura, but more important you can’t get Freezed any longer. Getting frozen by bunch of caster skeletons is the number one reason why I died before getting this headpiece so set your goals towards obtaining this: it costs 2 Exalted Orbs at most with a maxed roll, but you can purchase it for just over 1 Ex as well if you’re patient.

    Another upside to this headpiece is that it enables you to use a third aura (Hatred) due to its 8% reduced reserved mana for auras, and it also adds 2 additional levels to auras you use in this item so your Grace and Determination are at level 22 and have increased effectiveness.

    Kaom's HeartKaom’s Heart

    Pretty much the bread and butter of every melee build in this game, nothing beats a +1000 health chest. I got lucky and it dropped for me but otherwise you might need to spend even 25 Exalted Orbs or more for this item. It’s not a realistic goal if this is your first character so use a chest with high armor or evasion, high health, and resists. You could purchase one for far less than 1 Exalted, unless you want 5 or 6 linked sockets (which as mentioned isn’t necessary).

    With several % health regen skill points and Kaom’s I have over 200 health regen/second in addition to life leech from items (and 2% from passive skill tree). 95% of the time I’m at max health, only in extreme cases you have to resort to using Flasks, Rejuvenation Totem, or escape the engagement.

    Weapons

    Any kind of weapons will do. Obviously you’ll focus on physical damage rather than elemental, but the upside is they are much cheaper if you want to buy them. Having lifesteal is helpful but not mandatory. I prefer swords (Rapier, Foil etc.) for their higher attack speed.

    Weapons

    My current weapons. Higher attack speed can sometimes cover for a lack of higher physical damage. I currently have 12k/9k DPS with these average swords.

    Priorities/summary

    In general your equipment should prioritize resists, health, armor and evasion (in that order). Get one item with mana leech so you don’t need to use a gem, and try to save enough currency to buy Alpha’s Howl: the ability to use Hatred aura will increase your DPS quite a lot.

    Mana Leech Gauntlets

    The stats are far below average on my current gloves but having mana leech is crucial to making this build work.

    Skill Gems

    Dual Strike

    Dual Strike

    Your main single-target ability. You don’t need +quality since it only increases your critical strike chance which you have 0% due to taking Resolute Technique in the passive skill tree.

    Support gems: Multistrike*, Melee Physical Damage, Faster Attacks (none are required with +quality but if you’re rich of course get them).

    Cleave

    Cleave

    Multi-target damaging ability. Having +20% quality increases its attack speed by 10% so buy it if you can afford.

    Support gems: Faster Attacks, Multistrike, Melee Physical Damage.

    Leap Slam

    Leap Slam

    Since it scales with attack speed you can jump around the map extremely fast. I find it very useful in many situations especially as an escape tool if things get rough, but you’ll also be able to leap over some ledges or jump to pick up your loot quickly.

    Support gems: I use Faster Attacks, but none are required. Blood Magic is preferred so you don’t need to worry about the cost. No +quality required (adds stun duration).

    Rejuvenation Totem

    Rejuvenation Totem

    Extremely helpful when you run out of health and want to regen quicker. Quality adds increased totem life, helpful but by no means necessary.

    Support gems: none required, you can use Blood Magic or Faster casting if you wish.

    Molten Shell

    Molten Shell

    Shield absorbing over 2000 damage at max rank? Yes please. It also adds 1000 additional armor, further increased by your passive skill tree. When you expect damage, walk into tons of melee mobs or fight against particular bosses it helps prevent a lot of damage and might just save your life. +Quality only adds chance to ignite monsters so don’t bother with it.

    Support gems: none required, I use Blood Magic. Faster Casting is also a good choice. No quality necessary.

    Grace

    Grace

    Adds 1300ish additional evasion rating at max rank, further increased by multiple points in your passive skill tree. Incredibly helpful as it increases your armor substantially. +Quality only adds radius so feel free to skip it.

    Support gems: Reduced Mana, Blood Magic if you don’t have Alpha’s Howl and think you can afford losing 400 health. +Quality on Reduced Mana gem does not work on auras (intended).

    Determination

    Determination

    Further increases your armor by 50%. A must have aura with no +quality required.

    Support gems: Reduced Mana.

    Hatred

    Hatred

    Unless you have high amounts of health you don’t want to use it at first. You can use it as soon as you get your Alpha’s Howl. +Quality only adds increased radius therefore not necessary. Be careful about Intelligence requirements: you might not want to level this gem past level 10 (it has miniscule DPS increase anyway).

    Support gems: Reduced Mana. No +quality needed.

    * Multistrike is not a frequent skill gem drop and you may have to purchase it (typically around 3 Chaos Orbs). It can not be obtained from quests. As an alternative you can use Added Fire Damage until you can obtain Multistrike.

    All the other gems are easily acquired from quests or drops, and if you happen to need one you can easily buy it for as little as 1 Orb of Alchemy.

    Gem rewards from quests

    Skill gem Duelist Marauder
    Dual Strike Enemy at the Gate (Act 1 Normal) Enemy at the Gate (Act 1 Normal), Mercy Mission (Act 1 Normal)
    Cleave Dying Exile (Act 1 Normal) Enemy at the Gate (Act 1 Normal), Mercy Mission (Act 1 Normal)
    Leap Slam The Caged Brute (Act 1 Normal), Intruders in Black (Act 2 Normal) The Caged Brute (Act 1 Normal), Intruders in Black (Act 2 Normal)
    Rejuvenation Totem Lost in Love (Act 3 Normal), Enemy at the Gate (Act 1 Cruel) Lost in Love (Act 3 Normal), Enemy at the Gate (Act 1 Cruel)
    Molten Shell None. The Caged Brute (Act 1 Normal)
    Grace Enemy at the Gate (Act I Cruel), The Caged Brute (Act 1 Cruel), Lost in Love (Act 3 Cruel) Enemy at the Gate (Act I Cruel)
    Determination Enemy at the Gate (Act 1 Cruel) Enemy at the Gate (Act 1 Cruel), The Caged Brute (Act 1 Cruel), Lost in Love (Act 3 Cruel)
    Hatred The Caged Brute (Act 1 Normal), Intruders in Black (Act 2 Normal) Intruders in Black (Act 2 Normal), Lost in Love (Act 3 Normal)
    Faster Attacks (x2) The Siren’s Last Cadence (Act 1 Cruel & Merciless), Sharp and Cruel (Act 2 Cruel and Merciless), Sever the Right Hand (Act 3 Cruel and Merciless) Mercy Mission (Act 1 Merciless), The Siren’s Last Cadence (Act 1 Merciless), Sever the Right Hand (Act 3 Merciless)
    Melee Physical Damage (x2) Mercy Mission (Act 1 Cruel) Mercy Mission (Act 1 Cruel & Merciless), The Siren’s Last Cadence (Act 1 Cruel & Merciless), Sharp and Cruel (Act 2 Cruel & Merciless), Sever the Right Hand (Act 3 Merciless)
    Reduced Mana None. Sharp and Cruel (Act 2 Cruel & Merciless), Sever the Right Hand (Act 2 Cruel & Merciless), Mercy Mission (Act 1 Merciless), The Siren’s Last Cadence (Act 1 Merciless)
    Added Fire Damage (x1) The Siren’s Last Cadence (Act 1 Normal) The Siren’s Last Cadence (Act 1 Normal & Merciless), Sharp and Cruel (Act 2 Normal & Cruel), Sever the Right Hand (Act 3 Normal & Merciless), Mercy Mission (Act 1 Cruel)
    Blood Magic Mercy Mission (Act 1 Merciless), Sharp and Cruel (Act 2 Merciless) Mercy Mission (Act 1 Cruel & Merciless), The Siren’s Last Cadence (Act 1 Cruel & Merciless), Sever the Right Hand (Act 3 Cruel & Merciless)

    Just now when compiling the list above I noticed how Marauders have easier access to most skill gems you need so you may want to try my build with Marauders rather than Duelists. I hope the table helps you plan your quest rewards and figure out which gems to take. However none of these skill gems are expensive and you could buy everything you need for just a few Chaos Orbs.

    Alternatives

    If you’re running a 5 or 6 linked chest you can use Added Fire Damage as an additional support gem, or even as an alternative to Multistrike if you for some reason prefer. AFD deals less damage than Multistrike but only slightly.

    Also you may want to consider using Increased Item Rarity and Increased Item Quantity support gems on Dual Strike once your Cleave is strong enough for fast clears. My Dual Strike linked with Culling Strike + IIQ + IIR support gems still deals 5k damage, more than enough to finish bosses and rare monsters for noticeably increased drops.

    At later stages when your Cleave reaches about 10k DPS or above and you get your Kaom’s, you can consider completely removing Dual Strike. Four added gem slots will enable you to switch Grace for Haste (or even Purity) aura in your head piece, and use Grace, Anger and Wrath with a Blood Magic support gem. That way you can run 6 auras for increased damage at the cost of only 600ish health.

    As a bonus you can also run Clarity for increased mana regeneration if you have problems in half-regen maps.

    Curses

    Rejuvenation Totem and Molten Shell are definitely not mandatory in this build. It’s just the way I like to play but you could switch them with some curses if necessary.

    • Enfeeble – affected monsters have reduced Accuracy, Critical and Damage. Even a rank 1 Enfeeble reduces monster damage by 25% so if you have trouble surviving in some situations or against particular bosses feel free to consider it.
    • Vulnerability – increases your physical damage by 25%-34%. Be careful about leveling it fully as level 20 Vulnerability requires 151 Intelligence.
    • Warlord’s Mark – you gain increased life and mana leech on affected monsters: 3%-7% life leech and 1-3% mana leech depending on gem level. You can easily level it to 20 as it only requires Strength. If you need extra life leech or can’t get mana leech any other way consider using Warlord’s Mark.

    Bandits

    • Normal: help Oak and get +40 health
    • Cruel: help Oak for +18% physical damage
    • Merciless: kill them all (+1 skill point)

    Flasks

    I prefer using a setup of 2 health flasks, 1 hybrid (for cases if I run out of mana), 1 Granite and 1 Amethyst. You can see the flasks that I currently use below:

    Flasks

    They aren’t perfect rolls (except the Hybrid one) but they serve the purpose. I think it’s very important to have one “instant recovery when on low life” flask for situations when you suddenly drop near death, due to my low Chaos resist I like having an Amethyst one in case it’s needed, and the Hybrid one helps in case you happen to run out of mana and need to Leap Slam or use a Rejuvenation Totem.

    I also like all my flasks to have either bonus Armour or Evasion on use which is further scaled with the passive skill tree. Doubling your armor for nearly 5 seconds with a Granite Flask is crucial to surviving things like Vaal’s smash and such.

    With the high movement speed and overall mobility of my Shredder build I never felt the need to use Quicksilver Flasks, although I did notice that many players often use 3-4 of them for reasons unknown to me.

    Gameplay Videos

    I recorded several map runs so you can watch the build in action. My full gear at the time of recording it is here. As you can see besides the two unique items my gear isn’t anything special.

    You can watch many more of my boring map runs in this playlist, also embedded below.

    If you have any specific map run requests or something else let me know!

    Closing Thoughts

    From all the builds I’ve seen the Shredder is the most versatile in my opinion. There’s no monsters or skills you need to be afraid of and unlike many other builds it doesn’t require 50 Exalted Orbs to be viable, in fact it doesn’t require any specific gear. It’s very flexible while leveling and enables you to overcome shortcomings on your equipment with a few skill points into armor, resistances or health which are always conveniently placed. The build’s extremely high attack speed (I’m currently doing 8 attacks per second) is a thing to behold and you’ll probably spend the first few hours laughing your ass off at how ridiculous it looks.

    In all my Wraeclast adventures I came across one or maybe two dual-wielding Duelists with (possibly) the same build so this isn’t extremely popular among players. If you’re looking for a fun, effective, fast leveling, low-cost melee build that isn’t used by every other player than this might be exactly what you’re looking for.

    Questions? Feel free to ask me anything about the build and I’ll do my best to answer it.

  • Witch Passive Skill Tree Builds

    Path of Exile Witch Skill Tree Builds Guide

    Path of Exile Witch Skill Tree Builds GuideWitch isn’t exactly the most popular class in Path of Exile, therefore the lack of variety in skill tree builds for them. Most players don’t roll a witch to play a tank or melee DPS, but if you truly wanted you can build something out of the ordinary. Most Witch builds are ranged casters , but I’ve included a couple of other builds as well in case you’re a special snowflake.

    Below are a majority of most popular builds that players use on Witches, so if you need a head start on what skill gems and skill points to use this should point you in the right direction.

    Dual Spark Low-Life Righteous Fire Build

    This build isn’t for everyone, as it does require you to actually pay attention. Once you get the hang of it though and get the required items, you’ll easily be able to farm literally anything by yourself which is the biggest upside to this build. I recommend you check out the forum topic linked below and read more about this build and how to best make it work.

    Dual Spark Chaos Inoculation Build

    Another variety of the dual-totem build, this one based around Chaos Inoculation passive skill node (you have 1 health, but are immune to Chaos damage). As all dual totem builds it has great AoE damage, and since you’ll be using Spark there’s a chance to shock monsters for increased damage as well.

    This build is a bit slow when leveling through Normal difficulty and even a bit in Cruel, but once you get the right passive skills you’ll be able to farm whatever your heart desires.

    Dual Totem Ice Spear Build

    Unlike dual totem builds with Spark, Ice Spear’s goal is to freeze everything on your screen and dish out insane amounts of AoE damage. For single target damage you can use Bear and Fire Traps, and for particularly difficult monsters Conversion Trap can save your day.

    This is a pretty low-risk and versatile build capable of dealing with any map in endgame. The author included three different variations of this build, but I recommend the Spectre one.

    Dominating Blow Melee Witch Build

    This is one of the few Witch melee builds that isn’t too gimmicky and might actually be fun to try. I wouldn’t recommend this for your first character as it does depend on a few gear pieces to be highly effective but if you’re looking for something unusual this is probably it.

    It’s based around using Dominating Blow skill gem as the main attack which creates minions from slain enemies.

    Cold Crit Chaos Inoculation Build

    Cold Crit Witch basically locks down multiple enemies permanently with Freezing Pulse. The author does a really good job of going through every detail about this build so if you’re interested be sure to take a look at the forum topic linked below.


    The list above doesn’t of course cover every Witch build but only the most popular ones. You can take a look at the list below (taken from this thread) for a more comprehensive list of Witch builds.

    Cold Witch Builds

    Fire Witch Builds

    Lightning Witch Builds

    General Elementalist Witch Builds

    Summoner Witch Builds

    Totem Builds

    Wand Builds

    Misc Builds

    I do hope these builds help you discover how powerful your Witch can be. Don’t forget to experiment with builds yourself and adapt and choose them according to your own play style as well: find a build you will like playing, don’t just copy a build because it may be more powerful than some other. And remember to share your own thoughts and opinions in the comments below.

  • Ranger Skill Tree Builds

    Path of Exile Ranger Passive Skill Tree Builds Guide

    Path of Exile Ranger Passive Skill Tree Builds GuideUnlike most other classes Rangers players don’t have a vast diversity in skill tree builds. Most players roll Rangers to play as ranged archers and as such a majority of builds you can find are based around bows. It’s even been established that other classes (namely Marauders and Duelists) make even better archers due to the proximity of better defensive passive skill tree nodes, as well as Resolute Technique and Blood Magic.

    Nevertheless, if you want to play a ranged bow class leveling a Ranger isn’t necessarily a bad choice. You can still have a very effective character especially if you follow proven builds that most players use. I selected a few most popular Ranger skill tree builds below to help point you in the right direction, so make sure you take a close look at what makes them so efficient and see if it works for you as well.

    Lightning Arrow Build

    Lightning Arrow build is without a doubt the most popular one on bow Rangers. It has likely the highest DPS and it’s very good at clearing both single-target and multiple mobs at once. Lightning Arrow is usually linked with Lesser Multiple Projectiles, Weapon Elemental Damage and Life on Hit and Chain support gems, assuming you go for Blood Magic passive skill, and if you have a 6-linked item you can remove the Blood Magic node and add a support gem. For single targets most players use Frenzy or Elemental Hit, generally linked with the same support gems.

    The build is basically fully defensive with barely any points in damage, which is usually how ranger builds work. If you have to keep running from every single monster or keep dying constantly then you’re not doing damage anyway. The upside to this build is that it simply does work well and doesn’t require any specific expensive unique items.

    Rain of Arrows Build

    Another hugely popular Ranger build is based around Rain of Arrows. It isn’t much different from the Lightning Arrow build in terms of equipment or points in your skill tree, so you can even switch back and forth and test both builds if you wish with a few Orbs of Regret. Even the forum topic for this build is the same as above, so go ahead and check it out as well.

    Dual Wield Physical Sword Build

    A simple and effective build based on dual wielding swords. Abilities used are Dual Strike, Flicker Strike, Cleave and Whirling Blades, so basically a mixture of single-target and AoE damage. My dual wield Duelist build is similar to this one and I must say that it works really well in both solo and groups, and the damage is pretty high.

    Dual Wield Elemental Cleave Build

    This is pretty much a cookie-cutter elemental damage Cleave build a lot of players run with. Again like most builds this would likely work better for Marauders or even Duelists. A very good upside to this build is that it can be used effectively for a Lightning Arrow Ranger as well, giving you a choice if you want to switch your play style later on.


    I know this isn’t a vast selection of builds, but Rangers might be one class that I actually may have included a majority of viable builds. As mentioned at the start of the article most builds (even bow-based) are better on other classes, as building a glass-cannon simply isn’t viable in Path of Exile. I do encourage you to modify the linked builds and any other you may find to your own play style, but don’t forget to include a ton of defensive nodes in them.

    If you have your own builds to suggest, or have any other questions or thoughts I’d appreciate if you left them in the comments below. Thanks!

  • Duelist Skill Tree Builds

    Path of Exile Duelist Skill Tree Builds Guide

    Path of Exile Duelist Skill Tree Builds GuideDuelist skill tree builds range anywhere from a tanky two-handed beast to an elemental bow ranger. They are in fact one of the least played classes in Path of Exile but there’s no real reason for it: since PoE has such a modular passive skill tree you can easily build your character to fit your play style.

    Most duelists however choose either bow builds, or melee builds with dual wield or one-handed weapon and shield. Of course as with all other classes there isn’t a best choice and it’s entirely up to you how to build your character. Fun fact is that Duelists make better archers than the Ranger class due to easier access to some defensive skill points, so it’s no surprise many players choose this class over Rangers. Below you can take a look at some of the most popular Duelist passive skill tree builds which should help guide you in the right direction.

    Lightning Arrow Archer

    This is a fairly standard ranged build based around Lightning Arrow, a must-have skill gem that most rangers use. Besides providing plenty of DPS it also has just enough defensive skill points to help you survive almost anything. The build can also be easily modified depending on your current equipment or wishes, so you can choose to take a few more defensive points and increase your Evasion if necessary.

    For ranged duelists focused on bows you can take a look at our build choices for other classes and simply adapt them for Duelists with a few points.

    Lightning Strike Build (With 7 Auras!)

    Very fun build focused on taking down monsters with Lightning Strike as your main damage tool. Since it has such a long range it’s often much safer to use than Sweep or Cleave, in addition to maintaining 3 shock stacks on all enemies continuously. It’s fairly easy to play and flexible on equipment, but the end-game gear can be costly: you will need a 6-linked item to make the most out of this build.

    Considering you’ll be using seven different auras (Anger, Wrath, Grace, Hatred, Haste, Determination, Purity) this is probably the ultimate group supporting build.

    2-Handed Lightning Strike Build

    This is a very tanky build with significant damage output (10k+) based around Lightning Strike and a two-handed weapon. With proper gear your resistances should be maxed and your health pool over 5000 (obviously the numbers depending on your equipment). Kaom’s Heart (1000 HP chest) is almost a must-have with this build, as is a 6-linked weapon, so take into account that it may cost you a significant amount of Exalted Orbs to build this properly.

    This build also used 4 different auras (Determination, Hatred, Anger and Clarity), and uses Dual Strike as a single-target main attack. It’s also possible to adapt it to work with dual-wielding if you prefer.

    1H+Shield Lightning Cyclone Build Guide

    This build uses a 1-handed weapon and shield along with Cyclone as its main AoE skill and Double Strike for single target DPS. It has a good mix of damage and survivability with maxed resistances and over 50% block, enabling you to spin your way through packs of monsters, apply shock stacks and easily take them all down.

    The build isn’t cheap and will take quite an effort to obtain, but it’s not nearly as expensive as some other builds out there.

    Tanky High DPS Cleave Duelist

    Another build that uses 7 auras to support your damage output and survivability, but this one is based on using Cleave as your main damaging ability. Since it boasts up to 20k DPS and armor you’ll easily be able to clear maps by yourself. You can also (choose to) get Unwavering Stance, Inner Force, Iron Reflexes and Resolute Technique passive nodes which are all extremely useful.

    Like all melee builds it requires decent equipment but nothing extremely expensive. Considering how easy it is to farm with this you shouldn’t have any problems getting good gear.

    Dual Wield Physical Cleave Build

    Elemental damage my be superior, but that doesn’t mean physical can’t be good as well. This is a fairly simple build with a lower amount of damage nodes and mostly focused on survivability. You don’t need any specific gear to make this work well, and you just need to aim for defensive stats. The only great items you need are two high-DPS weapons; of course a 6-linked chest is always going to increase your DPS but it isn’t mandatory early on.

    Glacial Hammer Build

    Glacial Hammer isn’t a widely used skill gem on a Duelist, but this build can work well if you want to invest the time and currency into it. It uses Melee Splash and Multistrike support gems for Glacial Hammer making your attacks extremely fast and able to hit multiple enemies, as well as shatter them once they hit a third of their life.

    Dual Wield Dual Strike/Cleave Physical Build

    This is the build I’m using myself after several unsuccessful attempts to have fun playing rangers, witches, tanks and whatnot. It features high damage with even higher durability and is extremely gear independent. Great for beginners or anyone else who want a dual-wielding powerhouse without spending any currency whatsoever to make it viable.


    The builds listed above are just some of the most popular ones that players are using, therefore if you need a basic guideline on how to build your Duelist it should give you a good idea on which skill gems and passive skill tree nodes to use. As always I recommend you to adapt everything to your own preferences, so if you don’t need insane DPS don’t be afraid to take a few +life nodes or some other skill points. Also Duelists and most of these builds can work well with multiple abilities such as Cleave or Lightning Strike so you should be able to adapt the build to your play style.

    Be sure to comment on the builds and tell us your experiences below.

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