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Glacier's Ice Vortex - problems & possible solution



Ice Vortex is a subskill in Glacier’s tree and in theory a good showcase of LE’s skill customizability. I really like the idea of using an AoE crit nuke ability and turning it into a DoT AoE, while still being able to inflict ailments on hit.

Lets discuss it in more detail:

  • 4 cold base damage
  • doesn’t scale with attributes or generic damage nodes from Glacier tree
  • Cold, Spell & DoT tags
  • 20% added damage effectiveness
  • has no freeze rate

For comparison here are maelstroms stats, another AoE cold dot spell.

For Ice vortex i used this setup. ‘Lesser Glacier’ to remove the third explosion and make the mana cost affordable, a total of 12 points to guarantee a Greater Ice Vortex for the first and second explosion and ‘Static Colapse’ to make Glacier targeted and all explosions occur at the target location. → We always get two layered Greater Ice Vortex per Glacier cast at the target location.

The problems:
Progressing the campaign and normal timelines felt not good. Damage was always on the low side, although i invested heavily into it when and where ever i could. Specced Ice barrage for its global more cold damage modifier, % increased cold dot idols, Atrophy for DoT penetration, staff over wand + catalyst, et cetera. Was it just enough damage for normal timelines, it fell apart upon reaching empowered.

Hitting the dummy in EoT with one Glacier cast (two layered Greater Ice Vortex) ticks the dummy with ~2900 damage. Casting Ice Barrage against the dummy gives between 3500 to 5000 damage per hit. Meh, i have tons of % increased elemental DoT and still the hit skill gets the cake.

Also we don’t even have to compare it with mana stacking crit Glacier + Fractured Crown.

A Possible Solution could include:

  • intelligence scaling/ tag
  • increase the Added damage Effectiveness and base damage
  • ‘Whirlpools’ node: add 15% more DoT for Ice Vortex and 15% less hit damage for Glacier per Point
  • ‘Rime Caster’ node: significantly increase numbers of the Rime buff
  • ‘Greater Vortex’ node: replace Rime Effect modifier with % more damage for Ice Vortex
  • ‘Moderate Vortx’ node: remove Rime duration, add cold penetration per Crit Multi at 50% effect

Thank you for reading.


That would be inherited from Glacier by default, even when a subskill says it scales with a different attribute than the proccing skill, it inherits & scales with the proccing skill’s attribute.

I think the added damage effectiveness should be increased, certainly, probably to bring it into line with Maelstrom. That way if you’re focusing on it, as you did, with a staff & as much flat damage as possible it’d be more effective. I don’t think upping the base damage is going to do much other than if you’re not focusing on the DoT (ie, you’re making a normal glacier build & take those nodes as well).

A potential problem with that is that it’d affect all DoTs/freeze skills which may not be desirable if all you’re trying to do is make the Vortex better.

IMO, they could/should just add an additional buff modifier that affects Vortex, possibly with a buff to Vortex/Rime on the Lesser Vortex node as well (% DoT per Freeze Multi?).

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Oh, good to know! I thought this was just for ailments, not subskills.

But its not a multiplicative mod, imho another 50 to 100% global DoT damage/ freeze multi wouldn’t hurt that much in late game, but make it stronger during leveling.
On the other hand we have the questionable global 60% more cold damage on Ice Barrage.

Sounds good, but i think the Lesser Vortex node is in a good place for a one pointer, but a small buff for it wouldn’t hurt.

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ok, turns out it was naive to blindly trust the [alt] tooltip from ‘whirlpools’ node. Ice vortex scales with (non hit) modifiers from tree.

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