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[0.8.3d] Gotta freeze 'em all - 250+ corruption cold sorcerer

Edit2: Added a video showing uncut random echoes at 300 corruption.
Edit: Updated the Video to show the Formosus fight as well.

Since I started playing this game and the mage class I wanted to make a viable freeze based build which is able to run decently high corruption monoliths while freezing rares constantly and bosses regularly. In 0.8.2 I played around with Glacier, Ice Barrage, Volcanic Orb and Lightening Blast but the tools didn’t work together as expected.

The new patch 0.8.3 now added amazing support uniques and the new static orb rework to the game which finally makes the build viable. I’m currently freezing content around 250 corruption constantly and still have room to improve. If a second Oceareon would drop I could effectively double my freeze chance again!

While the build is amazing for echoes it is decent for bosses. In the video showcase you can see an echo, Formosus and a Shade of Orobyss at 260 corruption combined with 138% increased health showing its viability for higher corruption. For the Shade of Orobyss fight the 0% void resistance can be quite difficult but I plan to improve it making the fight easier. You may notice that the freeze effect for the shade is not the well visualized but he gets frozen sometimes recognizable when is stops moving and/or casts are interrupted.

Due to its cold nature this build quite differs from other common sorcerer builds as they rarely focus on cold. We use some less common skills as well as unusual specs for some others like teleport and flame ward.

Since freeze chance is independent of hit damage the most important thing in a freeze build obviously is a high hit/attack rate. A high hit rate in addition goes well with ailments and in combination with freeze and cold frostbite is obviously our first choice as it also reduces enemies freeze avoidance chance. With the focus on hit rate and ailments the build goes a non-crit route and focuses mainly on cold/elemental damage alongside frostbite duration/effect/application to boost its damage.

We will use an orbiting Static Orb and Ice Barrage as our main damage spells. Both provide a high hit rate and built-in frostbite application. While Static Orb is essential for smooth echoes, ice barrage enables fast killing of rares and bosses and pushes the amount of applied frostbite stacks heavily to increase our freeze chance.

Quicklinks

General playstyle

Use static orb every 1 to 2s while moving around. Use Teleport and Flame Ward as often as required and keep them mostly on cooldown. Use Ice Barrage especially against bosses or fire infront/behind you. While progressing through a monolith I like to fire behind me to kill the high health minions which follow and freeze them to get more ward as well. Depending on the situation shooting in front of you can be better. Snap Freeze is kept on cooldown as well to get the buffs. Try to hit high health rares/bosses to increase the damage taken.

Tips

Static orb can shatter on some obstacles like Gates or slopes.

  • Gates:
    Precast Ice Barrage, klick the gate fast, teleport away, use snap freeze, built up static orbs again
  • Arena:
    Most are fine. If you get the one where you stand in the middle surrounded by obstacles you may consider to go to one of the sides.
  • Slopes:
    Use Ice Barrage to shoot in front you. Snap freeze smart and use some static orbs in-between.

Survivability loop

Freezing is our main source of survivability as a frozen enemy cannot hit. Each of these freezes grants us up to 23 health because of our gloves. If we use an elemental spell (all besides teleport) we convert 15% from our current health to ward as well. The damage dealt now leeches back health granting us high ward alongside full health. For echoes we can reach 4-6k ward this way if some enemies are around us like in beacon fights. Fighting the shard, where less freezes are applied, we still can reach around 1.5k ward through the relic.

Uniques

The build relays quite heavily on two uniques which enable its viability in high empowered monoliths and two more to boost it further:

  • Frostbite Shackles:
    Newly added, these gloves give a high frostbite chance, frostbite duration, freeze rate multiplier, ward on freeze and ward retention per cold resistance. All these stat get utilized in the build to either increase the our freeze chance, damage or survivability. It is a REQUIREMENT and should be acquired first. Target-farmable in Blood, Frost and Death.
  • Twisted Heart:
    Also newly added, this relic allows us to convert health to ward enabling the utilization of life leech in a build with a high level of ward somewhere between 1.5k and 6k depending on the situation. Utilizing life leech we most of the time have a full 1.5k health pool as well. It furthermore ensures to have ward in the beginning of echoes and grants +1 level to 4 of our 5 spells. It is REQUIRED and should be acquired second. Target farmable in Reign of Dragons.
  • Oceareon:
    Without any other source of ‘Freeze Rate per stack of chill’ this ring effectively gives a 6x more multiplier for our freeze chance as long as we constantly apply three chill. It on its own grants chill chance which in combination with our high attack rate guarantees a high uptime. It is RECOMMENDED but not target-farmable. A second one can be useful in for high corruption as it will again give a huge multiplier for our freeze chance. Although the second one only provides a multiplier of 2 instead of 6.
  • Throne of Ambition:
    This new unique idol gives up to 400% inc cold damage and 400% inc armor when hitting a unique every 4s. This gives some additional required damage and survivability for boss fights. The increased armor will push us to around 70% damage reduction from armor. It is RECOMMENDED and should be the third unique to target farm in the Stolen Lance.

Other useful uniques are

  • Frozen Ire:
    Decent starter weapon which provides more freeze chance in echoes due to its tundra nova proc. It does not improve boss freeze chance because the nova procs around the target.
  • Aurora’s Time Glass:
    Can add some survivability and ward/life regeneration as it can be triggered by the health/ward conversion on your own
  • Mourningfrost:
    Good Boots which can double our Freeze Rate due to their rare affix which provides increased instead of added Freeze Rate Multiplier. May be required for really high corruption and at least is a good starter item. Do not stack dexterity!

Skills

Static Orb

Our bread and butter skill. Makes echoes smooth as we damage and freezes everything around us and provides good damage for bosses.

  • Biting Force:
    Required cold conversion
  • Orbital Fulmination and Scatter Blast
    Makes static orb orbiting and generating more hits through small orbs.
  • Static Orb:
    Permanent 25% damage reduction.
  • Ball Lightning:
    Reduces mana pressure. Recommended until -3 spell mana cost wand and around 18+ mana regeneration.
  • Shocking Conduit:
    Spent all spare points here. Since shock chance is converted into frostbite chance it increases damage and freeze chance.

Ice Barrage

Our single target damage and rare/boss freezer.

  • Nailed Shot and Hypothermia:
    Turning Ice Barrage into a frostbite machine!
  • Challenge the Elements:
    Higher hit rates gives more frostbite stacks.
  • Intensifying cold and Frigid Down:
    Big Freeze Rate Multiplier source and Frost Nove trigger to get more hits/stacks at enemy around the main target.
  • looming Frost:
    Spent spare points here. Most other nodes are for pathing but this is a more multiplier for frostbite stacks as well and thus increases our damage a lot.

Snap Freeze

Provider of CC and Cold Resistance as well as Cold penetration through resistance stealing.

  • Silver Armor and Sap Warmth:
    Boosts base armor and cold resistance. It is also reducing enemies cold resistance by 25%. Sap Warmth currently does not update the character sheet stats and it may not work that we get the stolen cold resistance. Also it should be able to steal it from multiple enemies at once providing a huge buff in cold resistance thereby ward retention.
  • Blast Freeze and Snow Flurry:
    Together with the Recollection talent it reduces the cooldown to 3.5s allowing to get permanent buff uptime. All these sources of cooldown reduction are somehow multiplicative and not additive.
  • Frostbite:
    Spare point.

Flame Ward

Some damage reduction, 250% damage boost and source of mana recovery.

  • Warmth:
    Great source of Mana regeneration!
  • Frost Ward and Infusion:
    Converting to cold and granting a 250% damage increase on use.

Teleport

Movement skill. Providing cold resistance/armor, big chunk of freeze rate multiplier and stun immunity as well as a free cast to make mana management easier.

  • Time Dilation and Tunnel Finder:
    Together with the Recollection talent reducing the cd to 5.6s while buffing the buff uptime to 8s.
  • Frigid Departure and Crystaline Passage:
    Increasing the global Freeze Rate Multiplier and granting armor and cold resistance.
  • Rock Phase:
    Permanent stun immunity!

Passives

Nothing fancy. Grabbing most sources of Cold/Elemental Damage, mana regeneration and ward retention as well as some additional freeze rate multiplier. Additional cast speed makes the playstyle more smooth while some adaptive spell damage boosts the orb and missile damage.

  • Mage:
    Passives Elementalist, scholar and Ice and Fire are mostly picked at the end of the character progression. Just spent 20 points in the base class early on.
  • Spellblade:
    Points provide some resistance and elemental damage which can be useful early on depending on your equipment.
  • Sorcerer:
    Prioritize as you like. Freeze Rate Multiplier is not as important early on as we get a good multiplier from the skills already. Some notes:
    • Getting to the leech/penetration of Chill the Bone is important.
    • At least one point in Arcane Avalanche can be good for survivability
    • 1 point in arcane insight is enough for sustaining the buff.
    • Recollection improves snap freeze and teleport availability

Gear

The build planer show only one solution how to place the desired affixes. In the following I will provide an order for optimal affixes on each item. We try to get the best damage affixes while getting 18+ mana regeneration to make our mana sustain easier when wielding a -3 spell mana cost wand. Two T5 mana regeneration prefixes are probably enough. In my opinion belt and Amulet are the best items to get them. If mana regeneration is lower I recommend using the Ball Lightning talent for Static Orb to reduce the mana cost significantly but reducing damage also since we lose the orb explosions and tendrils. We also need one T5 critical strike avoidance suffix alongside the blessing. I would prefer helmet, belt or boots for this.

  • Amulet: Bone Amulet
    • Source for Mana Regeneration
    • Prefix priority: Cold Penetration > Cold Damage > Elemental Damage > Damage over Time > Spell Damage
    • Suffix priority: Frailty > Armor Shred > Shock on Hit > Cold Resistance
  • Catalyst: Any base
    • Prefix priority: Cold Damage > Elemental Damage > Damage over Time > Spell Damage
    • Suffix priority: Cold Resistance > Elemental Resistance > Freeze Rate Multiplier
  • Non-Unique Ring: Ivory Ring or Sapphire Ring
    • Source for Mana Regeneration and Critical Strike Avoidance
    • Prefix priority: Intelligence > Cold Damage > Elemental Damage > Elemental Damage over time > Damage over Time > Spell Damage > Freeze Rate Multiplier/Cold Resistance
    • Suffix priority: Cold Resistance > Health > Elemental Resistance > Freeze Rate Multiplier
  • Belt: Any base
    • Source for Mana Regeneration and Critical Strike Avoidance
    • Prefix priority: Cold Damage > Elemental Damage over time > Freeze Rate Multiplier/Freezing Concoction
    • Suffix priority: Health Hybrid > Health > Cold Resistance > Elemental Resistance
  • Boots: Heoborean or Arcane boots
    • Source for Critical Strike Avoidance
    • Prefix Priority: Movement Speed > Intelligence > Vitality
    • Suffix Priority: Hybrid Health > Health > Cold Resistance > Elemental Resistance
  • Helmet: Celestial helm or Silver Crown (Celestial makes it easier to reach 300+ mana)
    • Source for Critical Strike Avoidance
    • Prefix Priority: Frostbite on Cold Hit > Frostbite Effect > Freeze Rate per stack of Chill > Level of Static Orb > Cold Damage over Time > Intelligence
    • Suffix Priority: % Health > Health > Cold Resistance > Elemental Resistance
  • Body: Celestial Robes or Battlemage Robes or Elder Rainment or anything else (doesn’t male a big difference)
    • Prefix Priority: Frostbite on Cold Hit > Frostbite Effect > Freeze Rate per stack of Chill > Level of Ice Barrage > Cold Damage over Time > Intelligence
    • Suffix Priority: % Health > Health > Cold Resistance > Elemental Resistance
  • Wand: Crystal or Dragonhorn Wand
    • Prefix priority: Cold Damage > Elemental Damage > Elemental Damage over Time > Damage over Time > Spell Damage
    • Suffix priority: Chance to Shock on Hit > Freeze Rate Multiplier (note: shock chance for static orb is converted to frostbite chance)

While maxing damage, health and mana regeneration we should aim for one suffix of physical/poison and void resistance to get the these to a good level. Necrotic Resistance is already fine when using a Bone Amulet and an Ivory Ring. It should be noted that these resistances are only getting important at higher corruption levels. I played with 0 non-elemental resistances until around 220 but at this point the shade can get really nasty but works if fight is well practiced. The resistance suffixes on body armor are the highest thus we prefer (for non-exalted) to get poison and void resistance on body armor. Since physical resistance already is non-zero thanks to a Bone Amulet a suffix on any other item is sufficient. Keep in mind to also get a critical strike avoidance suffix.

Idols

We run three 1x3, two 3x1, one 2x2 and one 1x1 idol.

  • 2x2 idol:
    Here we obviously use the unique Throne of Ambition idol. If not available yet it can be replaced by a 2x2 with frostbite on cold hit prefix and in the best case one of the following suffixes: Cold Resistance/Health/Spell Cold Damage
  • 1x3 idols:
    Here we are looking for a high frostbite effect prefix and in the best case a cold damage (double over 300 mana) suffix. Cold Resistance/Health/Shared Cold Damage are also acceptable
  • 3x1 idols:
    Frostbite duration is the prefix of desire here. The damage focused affix here is damage over time while other defensive options are available also.
  • 1x1 idol:
    As you like. I went with Mana and Cold Resistance

Blessings

  • The Black Sun:
    Spell Damage leeched as Health. REQUIRED as a source of leech together with the Chill to the Bone passive. Although it is not working for ailments it provides additional leech to sustain our HP under the ward protection.
  • Ending the Storm:
    Freeze Rate Multiplier. Boosts our Freeze chance a little and nothing really better is available.
  • Reign of Dragons:
    Critical Strike Avoidance. Common choice to get Crit Avoidance if paired with one T5 Crit avoidance suffix. If two T6 Crit Avoidance on gear are available this can be replaced by all resistance or poison resistance as you like.
  • Age of Winter:
    Many good choices but Frostbite on Hit is probably the best as it boosts our damage and freeze chance.
  • Spirits of Fire:
    Flat Armor. Good source of damage reduction since we get 400% increased armor from our unique idol against bosses.

Closing words

Thank you to Tomaka for providing valuable feedback and useful discussion to improve the build.

I hope you enjoy the freezing playstyle as much as I do. Feel free to ask any questions.

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Hey there - looks like an interesting build to try… Slightly off topic for your post, but I thought it important enough to ask based on reports in the Bug section… Have you experienced a performance issue (specifically degrading FPS over time) when using Ice Barrage? It seems like there might be a specific IB setup (nodes) that causes it but nothing 100% confirmed yet… (more info here)

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Very nice and interesting build that change from classic one, bravo!

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Didn’t experience any frame drops by using ice barrage. My bleed palading build has bigger framerdrops compared to this build.

Updated the Video to show the Formosus fight as well.

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Thanks for checking this/confirming… It might be useful to compare your skill setup with the ones that are having issues - could help the devs…

I run something very similar, except I’m using Focus over Snap Freeze. How do you keep from running out of mana? I tried it without Focus and it was so slow.

Have you watched the video to have a look at my skill usage as well as my talents?

I have 18 mana regeneration and a free cast after casting teleport. You should not spam Static Orb and only use it approxiamtely every second (you can only get 5 orbs out with a 5s duration). Following Teleport you should either cast Static Orb or Ice Barrage (keep in mind that you can buff the duration to 7s+).

In addition I specced Flame Ward for the 100% mana regeneration on use giving additional mana recovery. I keep it mostly on cooldown.

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I run a very similar mage, but made different tweaks. I like my variation more, but I find it very interesting how we both have 90-95% the same build with out bumping knowledge back and forth. Kudos on the build its one of my favorite in Last Epoch as it utilizes a DoT that doesn’t have the best representation. I like seeing stuff melt vs stacking crit and spell damage.

Yeah. Freeze and Frostbite is really underused in the game right now. At least it was my experience looking into build guides. Great to see other players finding these kind of builds :slight_smile:

Do you mind sharing your tweaks? Getter other opinions and improving a build is always great!

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https://www.lastepochtools.com/planner/jQegr5or

This would be BiS for my current build chase.

This is my version as I like to spam static orb and not be mana starved. I do plan on eventually using an Orians and swapping void res blessing for spell leech. I have the same skill set up for teleport and flame ward. I use focus in instead of snap freeze, but its my preferred playstyle.

For static orb I have extra points due to helm, and opt in to ball lightning for quality of life and my damage comes from more hits.

Ice Barrage also gives me 30% increased cast speed with my build, I tried frost nova but wasn’t very impressed with it performance wise.

I went cold resistant shred vs frostbite as it makes the frostbite ailment hit significantly harder. If I could track dots better in game I would put science behind these choices, but again frostbite and dots aren’t bread and butter currently in game.

All prefixes are Elemental Damage over time and at full stacks currently with my current gear I’m just shy of 1200% cold damage with everything up.

I opted for static orb on helm, and flame ward on chest as frostbite effect on cold hit currently is hard to track to see if I can generate more stacks of frostbite. Having two charges of flame ward feels significantly better as well. With how much I spam static orb I feel like I’m generating enough stacks to not merit the extra prefix targeting.

Some opinions from me on your changes. Maybe you can take something from it:

  • The explosions are nice as you generate Tendrils whoch hit additinal enemies generating more hits. Without explosions you sadly don’t generate the tendrils as far as I know
  • Storm Conductor increases spell damage which only increases static orbs damage but not the damage of frostbite as it does not scale with spell damage. Just a comment because I think you try to scale mostly frostbite and not static orb/ice barrage if I understand correctly. Shock chance should be better.

I’m not sure if cast speed effects Ice barrage or Static Orb at all. My tests showed that it doesn’t change anything. The tooltip dps increases but I assume it is related to the reduced cast speed of the initial cast which would increase you dps because you could cast it more often. But since it has a duration it will not effect your dps at all. You don’t have an advantage when you cast it more often. Just QoL due to shorter cast time.

Again only looking at frostbite damage:

  • Maximum cold shred gives you 40% pen against bosses. With 15% pen on amulet this increases your damage from 1.15 to 1.55 by around 35%.
  • You have 143% frostbite chance on gear and 120% on static orb and 50% on gear. Getting the 100% frostbite on hit blessing gives you 313 → 413 % frostbite chance resulting in an dps increase of ca 32% but also offering additional reduction of freeze avoidance. For ice Barrage the increase is a little less.

→ Pure damage wise shred is probably better.

As seid before I think level of static orb are not that attractive right now since you don’T get much more frostbite damage from static orb itself. In your current gear +100% frostbite chance would increase your damage probably by a factor of 1.3 maybe 1.2 for bosses as argumented before. The 2 additonal static orb levels are probably worse and you don’t get a benefit from the spell damage from the affix.

Again just the things I would maybe think about. Going full elemental damage over time instead of cold/elemental as I want to do, will probably better damage-wise in the end. I just like it a little more well rounded and want to push the hit damage as well if possible. Also you have to take the gear dropping to you :smiley:

If you want to share more opinion to improve our skillset/equipment and want to give me your opinions feel free to message me or answer here again!

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Uploaded a new video showing a sequence of uncut random echoes at 300 corruption including a death because of low physical resistance :smiley:

[Last Epoch 0.8.3d] Gotta freeze 'em all - Uncut random echoes at 300 corruption

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Hey there,
I really like the vibe of a true cold sorc, but i really dislike ice barrage :confused: either there is some way to aim it after the cast i am not aware of or there should be.
It feels really clunky and i am looking for any alternatives and so far i am not happy.

Sadly, Ice Barrage is really good for bosses as it provides a big chunk of additional frostbite stacks. Have you tried just aiming it behind/infront of you? It has an uptime of 8s so you don’t have to cast it often and it should just help to control rare enemies. Static Orb usually does the work for other enemies.

You could also try cold volcanic orb with a focus on shrapnel frequency/damage but I assume it to be less efficient. In addition it also cannot be ‘adapted’ after casting and travles a straight line. If you try to use it you should always try to let it explode inside the enemy to generate a maximum amount of hits.

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I will suck it up for now with Ice Barrage ^^ I should have mentioned that i am still leveling so maybe it will feel better when the tree gets more fleshed out.

What i like about Vorb is that it is harder to “miss”, meaning if your goal is to deliver damage in to a boss i just have to adjust for a split second fire and done.
With Ice Barrage i see myself “losing” a lot of damage if i am forced to circle around to doge stuff. No doubt there is also some space for self improvement there for correctly using the skill on my part.

Another question if you should one day focus more on the dot side of things would you instead run with a composite staff rather than wand+catalyst?

P.S. Maybe it is just me but your BIS seems to leave you short of 300 mana?

The ‘homing’ effect of the missiles helps a lot. In boss fights you only have to stay on the same side while dodging. Vorb needs perfect position to cast but if the boss moves you will hit him less. With Ice Barrage you just have to stay on the same side of the boss and it will still hit.

I thin stat-wise they are close, aren’t they?. Both probably work similar good. The advantage of the wand is the -3 spell mana cost which helps a lot for mana sustain especiall when not using Ball Lightning for static orb. I think, one mana regeneration prefix gives similar results as one more elemntal damage over time prefix. If you get a really great staff you can should try it!

For me BiS says 309 mana in the planer. Otherwise you still can fit in one more point in the health/mana mage talent.

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Right totally forgot the minus 3 on the wand! That is actually a huge deal.

Also i have to ask this about Ice Barrage; you take Intensifying cold + frigid doom points which equates to 300% Freeze Multiplier and the 10% chance frost nova proc. Does that really outweigh the 3 remaining points in looming frost? The 75% damage more seems massive unless it is not affecting frostbite.

It would affect frostbite as it does not specify hit damage.
BUT: I like the ice nova proc for better clear; more aoe freeze → more heal; as well as the additional 300% freeze rate multiplier. It is totally possible that Looming frost would push the dps better but I haven’t felt the requirement for additional damage yet and I’m at 330 corruption. But freezing bosses is getting harder.

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mind sharing your lootfilter?

I have a super simple one as I’m mostly looking for exalted gear and the frostbite/freeze prefixes and gear to upgrade or shatter them as well as idols. You can find it attached to the post.
For the start it is probably better to export something from the buildplaner. Dammit provides some functions to create them automatically.

Freezer.xml (13.8 KB)

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