This build is based on a single minion, manifest armour and its interaction with shield throw to do disgusting damage.
-absolutely INSANE damage
-very good scaling, there are always upgrades to be chased
-very tanky, >3k life with base ~40% damage reduction from armour (scaling higher during combat)
-mobile with near permanent uptime on haste
-no on-demand movement skill, we use javelin which is a combo skill and it has a 6 sec CD
-clear is better than traditional minions but still pales in comparison to things like reign of winter/lightning blast etc
-requires at least a suloron’s step to get the build running
A little video showcase The last 5 seconds of the video “3 Ricochet mechanic demo”" will be explained in “key build interactions” later so ignore it for now.
Disclaimer: this guide is TEXT-HEAVY. You can click on the link below to my current character if it proves too wordy for you.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FuYT1KrQorI (legendary maw, 180 corrupt orobyss, T4 Julra)
https://youtu.be/5RB2jXm6b0M (no legendaries, arena echo gameplay, 200 corrupt crit avoid orobyss)
https://youtu.be/ZaXK71BKZls (Mono gameplay showing clearspeed, 240 corrupt)
How does the build perform, moving from 0.8.4 to 0.8.5?
Absolutely nothing changed.
I’m surprised the devs did not at least do some numerical changes to the nodes. At the same time, 2 builds that could compete with this build for high dps (reign of winter bowmage & poison umbral blades) were nerfed in this patch. Bowmage in particular was hit HARD. As of the time of this edit (20/3/22), this build, along with crit squirrels, is probably the highest dps in the game
How does the build handle the new dungeons and arena champions?
T4 Arena champions
The build absolutely rips apart tier 4 arena champions. However, you have to be careful doing T4 arena champs since the damage modifiers can scale upwards of 600%. If you do not have at least 3k life with sufficient armour and maxed resistances, you may find yourself getting blown out of the water if you encounter dangerous monsters on the last 10 waves.
Soul Fire Bastion
With the keys being bugged atm, I have not managed to get enough keys to enter T4 but from what I have seen from T1 and T2, the mechanics do not seem as punishing as the lightless arbour. Will update again once keys are fixed.
I’ve thrown upwards of 10 keys at T4 and I have no idea how tf you’re supposed to do this boss. I think you’re supposed to keep the light on the boss during his attacks and move it to the kindling in between his attacks (his abilities absolutely melt you if you dont, the falling rocks which might as well not have an indicator given how fast they fall, chonk me for 1.5k-ish, the slam is a straight up one-shot).
This is probably a mechanical problem and from what I’ve seen from T3, you should have no problem dpsing his heart if you can nail down the fight’s mechanics.
Are there any new uniques relevant to the build in 0.8.5?
The new uniques in this patch are generally lacklustre with the exception of Dragonsong (basically fire version of RoW). That being said, the devs have hinted that more new uniques will be arriving in the coming weeks so I will update this section once we have more info.
My current character (updated 20/3/22)
Key build interaction (PLEASE READ, esp if you have never played a similar build)
Shield Throw and Manifest Inspiration
The entire build revolves around the shield throw node: manifest inspiration. This node causes our manifest armour to perform a spinning attack with a moderate AOE whenever our shield throw projecile hits it.
This is essentially an extra attack with 360 degree AOE with no cooldown. I say extra attack because it does not cancel our MA’s default attacks when it procs this.
Therefore, we can essentially jack our MA’s attack speed to the moon using generic attack speed and throwing attack speed.
Abusing the difference betweenw hit and ricochet
Manifest inspiration procs on shield hit and not ricochet.
Our shield throw projectile hits everything in its travel path as it ricochets. Therefore by speccing our shield throw for 3 ricochets and using careful positioning, we can proc 3 AOE attacks with a single shield throw. You can see a demo of me doing this on the training dummy in the last 5 seconds of the video above.
Even more in depth explanation of how/why the 3 ricochet works
Why do you need 3 ricochets and how are ricochets counted?
First of all, just think of ricochets as the number of targets that the projectile can land on before it has to return to you. You can also think of it as how many times it can travel between 2 targets before it returns to you.
1st ricochet (travelling from you to the enemy, with your minion in between). This procs 1 AOE attack, but not because it ricocheted off your MA but because it hit your MA on its way to the enemy
2nd ricochet (travelling from the enemy to your MA). This procs 1 AOE attack because it ricocheted to your MA.
At this point, if you do not have a third ricochet specced, the projectile will return to you from your MA, resulting in only 2 proccs.
However, with a 3rd richochet, the projectile will now ricochet from our MA back to the enemy. This will NOT proc a third AOE. However, the projectile will now return from the enemy back to us. If our MA is hit by the projectile on its return, it will proc a third AOE attack.
TLDR: position your character behind your MA, in a straight line with the enemy and watch healthbars go poof
Suloron’s step is the only required unique to get this build going.
Everything else like a legendary apathy’s maw or prismatic gaze are purely upgrades and sometimes conditional depending on what is available to you. I have extensively detailed relevant uniques in the gearing section and will continue to update them as more are added to the game
In the gearing section, I will not be listing suffixes. You will be getting flat health/ hybrid health/ % health/ resistances / crit avoidance in these slots. Where and what to get completely differs based on idols and your items so there is no point in stating exactly what to get for most suffix slots (outside of gloves or exalted weapons). This also applies to sealing a 5th affix.
Helmet & Weapon
3 different scenarios here depending on what is available to you. Listed from highest dps to lowest
Scenario 1: You have a legendary apathy’s maw with flat crit on it
Ideal base: myrmidon (crit chance, offensive) or winged (crit avoid, defensive)
Ideal prefix 1: +2 Manifest armour
Ideal prefix 2: Either level of rive or level of vengeance
Scenario 2: You have a well rolled/legendary maw with no flat crit but still want to use it
Unique: Prismatic Gaze (a 3% base crit roll will be sufficient if you have enough crit chance on armour and gloves, otherwise 4% would be ideal)
Scenario 3: You do not have an apathy’s maw or have a god tier exalted 2h sword/axe
If your god tier weapon has flat crit, follow scenario 1. If it does not, follow scenario 2.
Either way, the suffixes you want here are:
Chill on hit/Armour shred/Minion Melee Dmg
Ideal base: myrmidon (crit chance, offensive) or winged (crit avoid, defensive)
Ideal prefixes: any increased skill level that has accompanying % melee damage
Sealed: same as prefix, there are more than 3 skill affixes granting melee damage
If you are using ribbon of blood
Ideal base: Solarum (crit chance, offensive)
Ideal prefixes: throwing attack speed & crit chance
Sealed: Attunement/Minion damage
Either suffix slot: armour shred. This is the best place to get a source of shred. Since we do phys/fire/void, armour shred is a significant boost to our damage. Getting it here also means that our shield throw hit AND our manifest armour hits will shred (with our MA’s hit having 300% increased shred chance)
If you are NOT using ribbon of blood
You MUST get melee damage leeched as health as a glove prefix, it does not have to be high tier due to the amplify from MA and the increased leech rate from maw, assuming you use it. Without a source of leech, your MA will absolutely get shredded due to the amplified negative phys res from suloron’s step
Unique: Suloron’s Step
Hands down BiS, feel free to slam more affixes if you get 1 with LP.
If you do not have 1, you can use any generic move speed/life boots but your MA will hit like a wet noodle.
Ideal prefixes: minion damage and cleanse on potion use.
Cleanse will absolutely save your ass on high corruption, don’t underestimate it.
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED: Ribbon of blood
This gives MA flat phys and a source of melee leech to sustain it. The value isn’t very high but keep in mind our MA has increased leech rate from maw (if you’re using it ofc)
Ideal base: Turquoise (offensive) or coral (defensive)
Prefixes: throwing attack speed + minion damage or attunement
Uniques & Legendaries: The Claw/The Fang/ Death Rattle
Ideal base: Jade/Turquoise/Bone
Prefixes: Minion damage & Mana regen
If you are struggling to get armour shred on gloves, you can get it here as a budget version. Also consider getting fraility on hit for extra survivability.
Ideal base: Heretical Script/ Mournful Pennant/ Argent Crest
Prefixes: Attunement/Minion Dmg
You can also go for sigils of hope here if a good crafting base presents itself.
Health and resists, plain and simple. You can also get armour shred on throwing hit, if a good idol presents itself.
The blademaster node is why we’re locked into swords and axes. You can technically use spears or other melee weapons but you will be missing out on 30% generic atk spd which means less shield throw speed
If you wish to be more tanky, put the first 10 points into battle hardened instead of weapons master. This is probably a better choice overall.
Grab more attunement/heal eff/necro res and health here. These pics were taken at lvl 99. The last point would go into holy symbol.
This is a 22 point tree, requiring tier 5 + lvl of MA on your helmet. If you do not have the required affix tiers, which points to take out will depend on which piece of gear is the shittiest at that time. E.g. you have a crappy helmet, then take 2 points out of the helmet stat node.
Otherwise the tree is straight forward and there’s nothing to explain here.
The left and bottom side of the tree is mandatory for the build to function.
On the right side, you can choose btw what is shown here (3 ricochet setup) OR if you feel that its too much effort/not worth it/can’t be bothered, take 5 points off Hemrin’s Technique and Iron monger. Put 4 of these into armouring aegis and the remaining can go into polished steel or fleet of foot. This will make you more tanky and speedy/less taxing on your mana.
Sigils of Hope
Standard 5 sigil dmg setup. If you opt for extra sigil levels on your relic, put the points into decree of flame.
Top left of the tree is mandatory for molten infusion.
If your MA is crit capped you can spec out of crit vuln in the bottom and put points into armour shred on the right. I prefer to keep these points to be able to do crit avoid nodes in echoes.
I suggest you do not take points out of the AOE node to make it easier to hit your MA since he is one hella zoomy boi.
This is specced to give dmg, armour and healing for both us and our MA. It is also our movement ability. This will take some getting used to as it is a combo ability and may cause you to die to Julra if you’re not used to it (nope, definitely didn’t happen to me).
I will not be specifying any of the drop rate blessings as these are purely individual choices. In fact I haven’t done a couple of them at lvl 99 since I don’t think they’re worth it.
Blacksun: Health/Health on kill
Ending the storm: Lightning res/Mana/Health regen
Reign of dragons: crit avoid/all res
Age of winter: phys or cold res/chill on hit (at least 40%+)
Spirits of fire: minion dmg/fraility on hit
0.8.5 release (20/3/22)
-edited intro, included pros and cons of the build
-edited rings and amulet under gearing, prioritizing throwing attack speed, armour shred
-added section on how the build performs in 0.8.5
-added section on required/relevant uniques
-added change log
-updated the link to my char
Can you provide a loot filter?
No, I have already detailed which prefixes you should get be getting on your gear. All you have to do is translate them into the in-game filter, which is very intuitive to use.
Why do you not use forged weapons?
The biggest reason: they require 2 skill slots. One for forgestrike and another to actually summon them reliably (either warpath or multistrike). Not only is this inefficient, they do not provide enough value for taking up 2 whole skill slots. On top of that, it would significantly reduce how much time we have to use shield throw on our MA.
Why do you stack so much attunement on passives and gear?
Due to us using battle standard, each point of attunement gives us:
10 health for our MA (MA innate scaling)
4% increased MA damage (MA innate scaling)
4% increased damage and armour while standing in battle standard
2 Mana, to help us cast sigils and shield throw with 7 mana cost, more reliably.
While each of these values are low, they add up to give significant returns per point of attunement. I have been using this strategy for my devotion lightning smiter as well and it is even more busted on that build.
Can I use leviathan carver instead? It seems to be a great weapon.
From Apathy’s Maw we get:
101 flat phys (implicit)
90-120 flat void
150%-220% increased physical (combined implicit, both modifiers increase our damage)
Access to doom with up to 50% increased effect, for a total of up to 24% more melee damage (This is a multiplicative modifer)
50%-100% increased generic melee damage (this scales all added void and fire damage)
50%-100% increased leech rate
Comparatively, leviathan carver gives 180-210 flat phys, 200%-280% increased phys, 6-12% phys penetration. We can see that flat dmg and % increased damage are generally similar across the two weapons but access to doom, which scales all our melee damage multiplicatively and increased leech rate (helps with MA’s survival) makes the maw a clear winner.
Additionally, the maw is also easier to farm for LP compared to leviathan carver
My MA keeps dying?
Do you have leech for your MA? We get this from glove prefix or ribbon of blood (assuming you’re using maw). If you do not have leech then your MA will get blown up due to suloron’s step negative phys res being amplified.
If you’re one of the few ones who read the entire guide, thank you for reading this insane wall of text
This is my first guide on last epoch so if you have any questions or feedback, do let me know below. Alternatively, you can PM me in game and I will answer your questions if I am free. Ign: Kryce