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Real hero - Part 2 - Cold Marksman

I’m always happy to see build guides. For me, they are an endless source of inspiration and ideas.
But I’m a bit tired of all these high level builds, requiring characters level 90+ with exhalted items.
Even worse now, we have builds with multiple Legendary items, augmenting the RNG factor.

Once again, I would like to showcase a non perfect but successful build. Something that has just finished the campaign. It is not a fully optimized build, it is a starting point and both the recall and the promise of fun moment.

This is a Cold Marksman. The idea was to use only or at least mainly Cold skills, with the help of Snowdrift and later Troaka’s Teeth.

The main damaging skill is Detonating Arrow, with the support of Umbral Blades. Both are converted to Cold and the Blades are spinning.
To sustain the Marksman, I used Shift and Shurikens in a very classical way.
As a fifth skill, I first used Hail of Arrows, converted to Cold. It felt rather good, but Mana sustain became a bit difficult. So I removed it and switched to Puncture, which is converted to Cold by Troaka’s Teeth.

Now, I have a decent chance of Frostbite on hit, and I have decent Freeze rate multiplier.
I wonder if I should push the move further, remove Detonating Arrow and take Hail of Arrows. Mana would be sustained by Puncture, thanks to Passive node.
If I do so, I also may change several passive points. Currently, I have invested on Critical Vulnerability, but DoTs don’t hit, which means that Frostbite and Hail of Arrows would not benefit it.

Here is the build. It is not a super OP build and it will probably not become one, but it has been fun to level it and to play the campaign.

The fight against Majasa - which is a good build check - was tense, but the Marksman did not die and won at the first try. In fact she did die once during the campaign, to a Scalebane Flurry. The Wengari Couple were very easy, Liath was fast, Lagon was very easy (even if Umbral Blades target him weirdly). Overall, the campaign was very smooth and easy, till the “tense” Majasa.

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New with 25% more bleed chance on the quiver, thanks to Legendary items.

@TriKster sorry to ping you, but I see you as the Marksman expert here.
Would you go hit or DoT?

Thanks Shtrak.
Nice build as always, Umbral Blades for a marksman is a good idea, I always see it as a bladedancer skill…

My only (very simple) marksman, just after Majasa:

Straightforward fire Hail of Arrows, with Cinder Strike mostly there to quickly refill mana thanks to the Sapping Strikes node (and doing a good chunk of damage in the process.)
Not a very original build I suppose, but I was surprised at how easily she disposed of Majasa, I was expecting a much harder fight.

Amusingly, I was going for poison Hail of Arrows at first, but I ended up with something completely different (I always do!). I think I got bored of all the overpowered poison builds published these days…

Fire Hail of Arrows? I would not have thought about it, but I like the idea.
Jade Quiver in Shift shows your initial poison route.
And Black Quiver… I’ve always liked the idea, but not the gameplay. I don’t like running all around, trying to gather my arrows.

I tried once Hail of Arrows, supported by Sanguine Hoard. It was cool, but I think I missed it and did not understand the skill correctly. I should try again.

Thanks for sharing this!

I wasn’t sure about blak quiver, but in fact I mostly use the one that falls automatically every 3 seconds. I pick it if it is in my way, or I don’t, doesn’t matter. I only directly cast it on bosses, when the arrows will fall in a small area and I pretty much pick them up without trying. I found it surprisingly useful.

If you go for Hail of Arrows I would recommend it, works best with big, mana-heavy skills.

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OK, I would have to remove something then. I’d like to keep Umbral Blades, they do huge damage. I will probably unspec Shurikens, in that case.

Havent looked into planner yet.
Depends on what you wanna reach in endgame. I usually try to reach highest arena/corruption level and therefore i only see crit and hoa at the right spot because they deal alot of dmg.
Hit/crit is always better in terms of survivability with marksman except playing dot which is hoa only. You wanna kill mobs as quickly as possible so that they cant reach you, thats the only secret for mm.
Hoa is like the only dot skill that fits to mm playstyle identity imo.
Ailments are just in a weird spot for mm. I hate standing still for stacking up dmg with a class that relies on movement/dodge (except stutter stepping).
With hit you play it save if you go high crits with cold conversion on DA.
I havent tried the new frostbite mm with new uniques yet which brings alot of dmg for puncture/DA or in general all frostbite stacking skills. You can also try hybrid crit/frostbite for DA since its easy to reach 100% crit and DA also has a low mana cost/high attack speed at the end, so should be a cool combo even if you normaly prefer to go one way.
I think frostbite mm or in general cold is a cool theme and you can do all content of course. Play whatever you prefer.

OK, thanks!
No specific objective. As usual, I don’t know how long I will play the character. I might get “bored” at a moment and stop, as well as I might stick to her.
For this one, I feel like I will play her for long, but with pauses. So no objective, just fun.

Now I’ve removed Detonating Arrow and specced Hail of Arrows. It works very well. If later I seek performance, I’ll move back to crit. For the moment, I’m experimenting. And retrieving the pleasure to play Marksman!