Advice please for a fire paladin

Very new to the game and interested in clarifying a couple of points.
I’ve specced into warpath and shield throw, but specced to do fire damage.

Are all skills considered to be ‘spells’ ? If not, how would I tell the difference?
Because of this, I can’t work out whether or not its better to use a wand or a sword for my weapon choice.

Wands seem to give + to spell damage as an implicit, whereas something like a sword is just a flat amount of physical damage.

Naturally, regardless of which I choose, having + or % fire damage as affixes seems to way to go.

Hello and welcome to the LE Forums!

No, not all skills are spells.
You can tell what a spell is by looking at the tags (Very bottom blue tags at each tooltip)

In your case both of the skills you mentioned are not spells.
Warpath is a melee Skill and Shield Throw is a Throwing Skill, those have seperate stats that scale them.

On Paladin the most obvious “Spell” would be Smite

There are a lot of hybrid skills where some portion of the skill is considerd a spell, while iother portions are melee or throwing attacks, like Tempest Strike or Shield Throw.

The Eruption Node in Shield Throw is adding a component to Shield Throw that is a spell.

It depends on yoru exact build and what you want to scale.
Warpath mostly scales with melee damage, so a melee weapon with decent amount of melee damage is necessary.
But if you also want to scale spells (like Lava Burst or Smite) you defintiely want a Weapon with Spell Damage.

The obvious Hybrid would be a Scepter, those have decent amount of melee and spell damage.

What is important to note here is, that Shield Throw does not scale with your weapon at all, neither Spell Damage (except Lava Burst) nor Melee damage will help here.
Throwing damage is an entire seperate scaling that is found on other items like Gloves, Belt, Relic, Rings and Amulets

So if you want more specific advice how to optimize your character a more detailed build would help.


Thankyou so much, thats already cleared up a ton of confusion. Tbh, I’m not sure what build I’m going for, just seeing what I enjoy at the moment.

Presently thats a (mostly) fire based paladin with lunge, warpath, smite and shield throw.

I’m guessing from a min max perspective, its better to have spells or skills that all scale off at least 1 common tag ? Otherwise I’m splitting my potential ?

Shield throw is still confusing, it has physical as a scaling tag, but doesn’t scale with a weapon, even if it has + or % physical damage ?

Any finally… if I’ve converted (say) warpath to fire, should I be looking for +/% to fire damage, or should be still be +/% to physical and the skill node does the ‘converting’ ?

EDIT:- I think I found the answer to the damage type conversion question here:

Basically if the skill is (say) converted to fire, then its scaling tag becomes fire, not (say) physical. So the scaling calculation happens after the conversion, not before, which I guess is logical.

Trying to have multiple skills scale with the same stats is defintiely the easiest and the most straight forward way, but there are defintiely other things possible.
Like for example a full spell build using Shield Throw and only scalign the Spell Portion of Lava Burst and using Idols that trigger Smite on Throwing hit. In this type of build Shield Throw would only be the vehicle to deliver spell damage through Lava Burst and Smite. (Just one example).

Damage Type is completely independend from what kind of skill (Spell, Melee, Throwing etc.) something is.

There are also Physical Spells (Mostly on Acolyte and some primalist stuff)

Conversions in LE only get bonuses from the converted damage type not the original damage type.

Thanks again for the clarification. I had seen some builds using other skills to ‘deliver’ the damage of another skill/spell.

One last question… iirc you can get both +melee damage and +melee fire damage.

In the case of a melee skill thats converted to fire, I assume the above makes no difference, because the damage will always be fire anyway ?

Does this also hold true for say +melee void damage. Would that get converted to fire if I am using the fire conversion of warpath but have that on an item ?

All of LE’s conversions are base damage conversions. So you will still add other damage types on top of it if you for example give a Melee Void Skill +Melee Fire Damage.

Stats like +X Melee Damage or +X Spell Damage are adaptive, meaning they will convert to whatever damage types a skill has split up evenly.
So +100 Melee Damage would give Erasing Strike for example 450 Melee Void Damage (including the damage effectiveness of 450%; 100 * 4,5).
A Skill like Void Cleave (with the Riftflame Node) is 50/50 Void/Fire, so +100 Melee Damage would give it +200 Melee Fire & +200 Melee Void Damage (including the 400% damage effectiveness)

If you add +100 Melee Fire Damage, this damage would not adaptively convert to a given damage type, but would still be effected by the skills damage effectiveness.

Yes that would make no difference.

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As a rule either Mellee, throwing or spell. Do not mix and match with those things. This is because flat added damage from weapons only effects mellee or spell(not both at the same time), and because flat throwing damage comes on rings.

For +% mods they have a few more generic mods, so it is easier to get away with mixing various elements in a spell build then it is to get away with spell and melee

Look at the weapon, notice how it says “+ MELEE physical damage”? Shield throw is a “throwing” skill, you can get flat throwing damage on rings, not weapons. It is effected by generic +%physical damage or by +%throwing, but not by +%physical melee or +% physical spell

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Thanks for all the useful Info, has been really helpful.

A question about throw… if thrown skills don’t use your weapons flat damage (although can benefit from +% damage (say physical if its not been altered), whats the best option in terms of weapons. Do I just have to accept the flat damage component is useless and go for something like dual wield daggers to get attack speed and double up on the +% bonuses ?

I think what the info I’ve been given also tells me is that my build might not scale super well if I have a combindation of melee, thrown and spell damage in a single build…

2H, Dual Wielding or 1H + Shield all have different options.

Attack Speed on Weapons also does not benefit your throwing, you need Throwing Attack Speed specifically for that.
% bonuses on 1H vs. 2H also don’t mean that much because 2H weapons have roughly 90% stronger modifiers.

Dual Wielding is the strongest option offensively, but the worst defensively, 2H is a middlground between dmg and defense and 1H+Shield would be the best defensive option.

I would mainly choose based on what Implicits modifiers different weapons offer.
For example if you go Fire based build Solarum Hammer is a good option, it has 6-12% Fire Penetration, this is a global stat and would affect everything you do, including Throwing, its not specific to Weapon Attacks.

Another interesting thing that doesn’t apply to your build, but in case you experiment with different throwing skills.

Javelin does scale with your weapon, if you have a Spear equipped. (Javelin gets 30% of the Added Melee Damage as Throwing Damage)

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It does. Anything that buffs generic Physical will buff Shield Throw (assuming you have not converted it to Fire etc). Also if the weapon had +2% critical chance, that would work too. Only things tagged as “melee” on a weapon (including its flat damage) would have no effect.

Yes you now need Fire damage and Physical will do nothing for you. Notice if you now mouse over Warpath it will be updated so it now has the “Fire” tag instead.

Look for powerful implicits like Crit Chance, Crit Multiplier, Armour Shred on hit, Attack Speed, there’s all sort of nice things on weapons other than their flat damage.

Also if you do end up being a Throwing build, there’s a lot to be said for using a Shield in off-hand as you’ll still get nice stats and have much better survivability.

I would add that using Shield Throw and Warpath is not a good combo, even if they are the same damage type. And I do not even mean because one is melee and one is throw (though that will be a problem too). I mean that they are both skills that want to be spammed (used constantly in combat), so they are “rivals”. I’d pick one or the other and go all-in.

Attack Speed is another interesting one. The game includes…

Melee Attack Speed
Throwing Attack Speed
Bow Attack Speed

While these all speak for themselves, there is also

“Attack Speed”

which buffs all non-spell attacks. (Spells use “Cast Speed”)

I mention this because for the longest time I thought “Attack Speed” meant melee attacks only.

So far, the build has been super fun.
Early on, shield throw was one shotting most mobs, and I’d close with lunge and use warpath to mop up.
As i progressed (now level 51), I found that warpath seemed to mostly keep up, but shield throw now often takes 2 or 3 hits to kill trash. Despite having %fire damage (on my weapon), I think warpath has scaled better because I also have +fire melee, which as I now understand, shield throw is not benefitting from.

So i’ve ended up with a simplified gameplay, where I charge in using lunge, which proc’s smite, which I’ve specced into +attack and +damage nodes, rather than using it for damage itself. I then get 4 seconds of added damage potential which warpath uses very effectively.

I’ve read some reddit posts saying warpath doesn’t scale great at very end game. Is that true ? I do already find myself struggling a little with single target damage (although compared to most other ARPGs I’ve played, it feels like I’m blasting through everything).

So I might retire shield throw, and use lunge, warpath as my primary attacks, supported by smite procs, so what should I put in my skills bar and specialise in ?

Currently specialisations are:-

Shield Throw
Holy Aura

I thought about sigil of hope, but I don’t enjoy the gameplay experience where I’m constantly having to rebuff every 15 seconds.

Are there any spell attacks? Not including compound skills like Tempest Strike where melee stuff affects the melee hit & spell stuff affects the spell hits.

You’ve likely not increased the flat throwing damage affixes on your gear/passives to boost the flat damage that the skill gets, while you’ve probably improved the weapon base so Warpath has more flat damage for the % modifiers to work with.

Since Warpath is a melee skill and Smite is a spell, you kinda have to choose which path to go down as your main damage dealer since both require different flat damage.

You can certainly use Smite as an auto-proccing buff (attack speed and flat damage on the left of the tree plus heals if you’re close enough) if you wanted to go more melee.

You’re not alone in that…

So I’ve respecced a little and moved away from fire damage, and gone back to purely physical.

Mostly because I picked up this item with +95% physical damage on it:-

Vortex Pennant - Unique Mournful Pennant - Relic - Last Epoch Item Database.

So still using lunge to proc smite, but mostly using smite for its +attack speed and healing, but annoyingly to get to the +attack speed node, I either have to go through the fissure nodes or +fire damage nodes, neither of which I’m now scaling so seems a waste of 3 points.

Shield throw is now gone in favour of sigil of hope, which I have extended to 25 second duration so its not too bad to refresh.

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The “refresh” will only be for bosses anyway.
With the node giving automatic sigils when you kill something, you shall have enough of them when clearing an echo.

At 5%, it still sucks.

Weapon attack speed applies to melee attacks only. But I will say that daggers have a generic %crit mod on them that effects almost every throwing skill, also as one of the things you will craft on your weapon is a generic %damage and the other will be crit chance/multi, you want your weapon to be able to assist crits.

As crits are basically the only bonus you can get to your throwing skill that comes from the base itself, also as a bunch of the sentinel specific affixes are for throwing crit chance/damage you should use a dagger. Your amulet should be a jade amulet(throwing amulet). Your gloves should be Solarum bracers(crit chance). your rings should be copper ring(crit chance), Your armor should be myrmidon plate(crit chance), your helm should be myrmidon helm(crit multi),

But if you get a sentinel specific affix related to throwing or a throwing skill level(even for a skill you are not using, as it comes with a big %damage increase) you should prioritise that over the which base it is unless the base is jade amulet.

I was wrong about it being JUST rings for affixes(it is just that rings get lower throwing mana cost as an affix, which is mandatory to get on both rings as that affix also grants throwing damage) - Throwing damage shows up on belts gloves relic AND amulets, throwing attack speed on gloves/ring.

When deciding on specific gear you should probably look at the Last Epoch Item Database (A fan site that tracks item stats) or while setting up your loot filter.

For javelin fire setup… you want spell damage as the damage is done by the fire trail which scales off spell damage, forget about throwing damage of the javelin itself, you also want a lot of healing effectivness to scale it.

Also I have not played a sentinel throwing build in a LONG time, so I may have missed some things

“attack rate” however is specifically melee/bow attack speed, not throwing

I think I should say, that flat throwing comes at the cost of a LOT of affix slots, 1 slot on rings(as they both get lower mana cost affixes), 1 on belt, 1 on amulet and 1 on relic. This is in addition to the level of skill mods that provide %throwing as a bonus, and all the other things that are generally added in to throwing builds(or anything that gives generic %phys for the frequency bonus).

It is not that the idea is bad in concept, it may be possible to scale the damage and frequency rate of the thrown axe to insane levels(based on my calculations, if you get all the related t5 affixes at mid rolls, this makes for 129% increased frequency, for 2.29 axes per second ignoring passive tree) Just consider that gearing may be difficult, also that it is competing with just doing a hammer throw build. You may also want to get legendary potential on that relic to force some flat throwing damage on it. Also you may want to get a legendary potential Riverbend Grasp - Unique Mail Bracers - Gloves - Last Epoch Item Database and add %throwing damage onto it. Also get the node in the tree that makes axes occur on hit and the one that gives a lot of generic phys if using a hammer/sceptor

Unless you are scaling the axe spam specifically I suggest you go for a different relic.

Which affix/stat is that, I don’t recall it.

Also, did he mention throwing axes rather than the Shield Throw skill?