Hey everyone this is Thyworm with a new build for Last Epoch, the The FireStarter. If you are enjoying Last Epoch content, consider subscribing. Let’s start with the build philosophy.
I wanted to try out some of the new skills in patch 0.7.10 and I’m a big fan of spell blades. The massive nerfs to ward a couple of patches ago made spellblades pretty much unplayable, but this situation has changed drastically, just like the passive tree by the way. There are a few clear directions you can go these days, and I took a fire flame reave / firebrand route, and ended up with a very solid character.
The FireStarter is easy to level, moderately difficult to play as you need to watch buffs and stacks, it has great defences with around 2k ward on top of 1k health, and we’ve layered a couple of defences to reduce incoming damage as well.
We’re focusing on raw damage. Ignite and crit play a very minor role in this build.
There is no movement skill, but I found the movement speed to be sufficient. I’ll give a few options for weapons that increase your clear speed a lot. Running the monolith after this is really just a breeze. I have died once in my entire playthrough, all the way up to killing the emperor of corpses, and that was because the game lagged out. You can clearly see in this footage it stutters like mad out of the blue, and me spamming potions here simply didn’t register.
I facetanked a lot of bosses as well, which is possible because of our heavy focus on defence stats. Damage output is moderate, but after we get enough mana and can swap mana strike for enchant weapon, the build really takes off and clear speed multiplies at least 3 times.
If you have any questions about the build, feel free to join my discord, we have a nice, active and helpful community over there. Link down below in the description. You can watch me stream these builds on Twitch as well at twitch.tv/thyworm
Let’s see what the main stats are that you want
We’re mostly looking for resistances, a lot of intelligence, a good weapon, crit avoidance, and some additional defensive layers. Frailty on hit is an important late game stat to look for. Blind, slow and chill help as well, if you can get it. Fire or armour shred increases damage quite a bit, but it’s hard to get in our build. But mostly, get res capped, crit capped and stack intelligence, and you won’t die. Once you reach that stage, we can look for damage.
Let’s look at the skill specialization and skills we’re using
Before you are a spellblade, you really lack skills to play as a spellblade, which means I levelled with elemental nova. In the levelling section I’ll make an extensive reference for this build, so we will get to that. As soon as you are a spellblade however, around level 25, you can swap skills and you get to the skills I’m showing here, with one exception, and that is mana strike. You will run out of mana if you level without mana strike, so don’t do that. The build will feel terrible. Level with mana strike, don’t take enchant weapon, and level like that until the moment you don’t really use mana strike anymore. For me, that was around level 75. At that time, I had enough flat mana and some regen to sustain.
It’s from that perspective, end game skills, that we’re looking at this section. So let’s see which 5 end-game skills we’re picking here.
We’re using flame reave as our primary damage ability. I chose to not go the crit route, but just take the flat fire damage. It’s plenty of damage and works well with the other skills. We take 5/5 Dancing Flames, to get the mana cost down and the attack speed up. The range is still fine after this. Tale rhytm of fire, which creates a massive 4th wave, dealing a lot of damage, and also take versatility, so that firebrand works towards the counter of 4. If you strike 3 times with firebrand, it counts as a flame reave strike, and the next flame reave strike will be a massive one. Good node.
Take 5/5 heat wave, really cranking up the damage, because it’s multiplicative. Take 2/3 slash and burn, just to get to 3/3 scorching tide, for another 60% more damage. We ignite a lot, so this is pretty much always active on bosses. The final 3 points go into arcane severance, for another 24% multiplier to damage.
I’m using 2 defensive skills as well. You should get Fire Shield very early on, because it caps your elemental resistances. It’s extremely useful to simply have 75% elemental resistances for almost half a minute, by pressing a button. The main drawback is of course you have to sort of keep track of this, but we’ll get to that in the playstyle.
For Fire Shield, take 5/5 master of the elements, capping elemental resist. Then increase the duration of this magnificent buff, by 5/5 lasting defence. 5/5 warding is nice for some ward, 3/3 pyromancers aegis is good for that ignite chance we want, and the final points don’t really matter, but I went for a bit more ignite, with emanation of heat and frequent emanation.
Flame Ward is another great skill. We’re using it to generate ward, to retain ward, and to reduce incoming damage. Take 3/3 dilation, reducing cost and increasing duration. Take 3/3 energize, for massive ward generation. Take 2/2 recollection, because 50% ward retention is massive. 3/3 prismatic buffer is a multiplicative defensive buffer, -30% damage taken. And that stacks with 5/5 barrier, for another 40% less damage taken. This makes you super tanky. We round off the skill with some damage, 4/5 infusion, for 200% fire damage.
Firebrand is the new skill in patch 0.7.10, and it’s a very versatile skill. We are using it for utility, so for us it gives us a bunch of firebrand stacks, 6, to be precise, and those stacks then give us additional bonuses. Mostly, defensive bonuses. We’re stacking armor, fire res and ward generation this way. There’s a small damage part as well, but the focus is on defences, because I really dislike dying in the Monolith.
Start with 2/2 pyroshielding, just to get to 5/5 undying fire, because you want the firebrand stack to last as long as possible. Everflames refreshes all stacks when you refresh just one, and this is obviously a vital node to take early. After this, keep fire brands up, all stacks, is pretty easy. Get more stacks by taking 2/2 wildfire, and now it’s time to reap the rewards of all those stacks. 3/3 warding flame provides 9 ward per second per stack, that is a solid 54 ward per second. And 5/5 insulation grants 50 armor per stack, granting 300 flat armour, very worth it as well, because that scales with any % armor increases we have on gear and in the passives. Finally, you can qo for some quality of life, by taking 2/3 fulmination, for attack speed.
If you would have to go the Mana Strike route still, just get all the mana you can get on the tree, as I’m showing you here. It’s not hard to figure this tree out. You want to get the most mana back in the shortest time, pretty simple.
When you can swap to Enchant Weapon, we’re purely using this skill to boost our damage, which in the end game helps a lot. We’re already super tanky, and mana strike didn’t contribute to tankiness, so getting pure damage is an option and it feels really good. The added damage, attack speed and modifiers are a large contributor to a very solid end game build.
First, make this last longer and cost 0 mana. Take 4/4 concentration, 4/4 efficacy and kindling blade, for a free recast. I use this because the skill is on my right mouse button. Then, we take damage, which means 5/5 celerity for 50% increased attack speed and 5/5 molten steel, adding massive added damage to our attacks, plus additional melee fire damage, which scales with flame reave. We got one point left, or 2 if you autocast this, and that point goes in chill. It’s only 5%, but we attack very very fast, so we do chill pretty often, potentially reducing enemy attack and cast speed by 18%.
Time to look at the passives.
I’m level 79 currently, and this character has done all the content, apart from the empowered timelines. That’s just not content I’m super interested in, to be honest.
In the passive tree we will focus on ward retention, ward generation and defences. There are a few damage nodes we’re taking, but not that many.
Take 8/8 arcanist, because intelligence is good. Take 1 point in scholar, 1 point in reactive ward, which we need to get to 5/5 warden, for 50% ward retention. It’s extremely good. The final 5 points go towards Mage Flurry, because attack speed scales so well with all our attacks and multipliers.
You specc into spellblade, obviously, and the passive grants you ward generation on hit. We’re stepping up that ward generation game by going 8/8 arcane warden, adding another 40 ward on hit. 8/8 infused weapon is a bunch of flat added damage to our strikes. 5/5 arcane shielding is extremely good for defense, especially combined with 5/5 shattered aegis. You now get 4 stacks at 60 less effectiveness, which is an overall increase of 60% more stats at 4 stacks. Do the math. 60 of 10% less damage taken, is now 4% less damage taken per stack. We have 4 stacks, usually. 4 times 4 = 16. So at four stacks, we have 16 less damage taken, instead of 10. A 60% increase at 4 stacks. This is huge, obviously. On top of that you get additional armor as well and ward generation. This is a mandatory node. Take 8/8 fire blood, for some hp and more added damage. 5/5 essence duel is pretty good, more attack speed and ward gain. Mana reaver is essential, 5/5, if you want to make the swap from mana strike to enchant weapons. Some high end nodes, 7/8 prismatic blade, because I’m not level 80 yet. Good damage. 6/10 volka’s razor, a lot of multipliers here. 10/10 mental fortitude is good, more ward and more intelligence. And top it off with 5/5 prodigy, for even more ward per 10 intelligence. You should easily have 50 intelligence by now. If I were to level all the way to level 100, I would probably go into sorcerer and take another 10 intelligence from that tree as well, next to some mana.
Then, also very important, Gear
With the loot filter, finding gear for this build isn’t too complicated anymore. Get res capped, crit capped, stack intelligence, and then it’s a good idea to layer a few additional defensive layers.
I have also created a TunkLabs for you guys, so you can see my gear. And on top of this, I created loot filters as you level this character, which you can download, drag in your game folder, and select in-game. Everything is taken care of, basically.
When looking at my gear, you see that I’m very focused on resistances and getting capped for crit. A good catalyst with intelligence and ward generation helps a lot on higher levels. I’m also taking some frailty on hit, which reduced enemy damage output by 6% and stacks 3 times. We’re hitting pretty fast, so on bosses it’s pretty common we reduce their damage output by 18%. On top of this, we take 40% less damage during flame ward, we take reduced ele damage, and we’re suddenly very tanky for a spellblade.
For damage, you should get a fast weapon with a lot of added melee damage, as this is applied to flame reave at 150% added damage effectiveness. My weapon over here has 110 flat base damage on it, which means that Flame Reave receives 150% of that, which is 165 added damage to flame reave. Because we have a lot of multipliers, this is a big deal. A deicide sword with a lot of added melee damage, of any type, is the preferred choice here. If you are able to, you could get the deicide sword set, the Shard of the Shattered Lance, which provides the deicide buff after killing a boss or rare, and that gives you 20% movement speed. It helps a lot with farming maps, although a crafted deicide sword with added flat damage is the better choice overall, this is still a good item, as for most echoes you don’t need all the damage. Just make sure to swap it around at the boss.
If you can get fire or armour shred somewhere, that helps quite a bit. Once again, we attack fast, so we shred fast, and reducing their armor increased our on-hit damage. We basically only do on-hit damage.
With my loot filter settings you should have no issues gearing this character. All the gear you see I’ve found myself and crafted myself. I ran this character from level 1 to the end of the monolith, while creating these filters for you guys, and I never felt weak in any part of the game. The only thing that occasionally happens is that you don’t find a good weapon for a while, so damage output is sometimes lacking. But at least you won’t die.
In terms of blessings, just look at the wishlist of the guide and pick something accordingly. 50% of the blessings are just plain bad, so they don’t matter anyway. Only the XP gain is kinda nice, the overall resistances are cool, and the mana increase is pretty big for our build.
TheFireStarterLootFilters.zip (22.3 KB)
unpack in this directory --> C:\Users\YOUROWNUSERNAME\AppData\LocalLow\Eleventh Hour Games\Last Epoch\Filters
you can also get there by going to the loot filter menu in-game, choose EXPORT and then let the game guide you to the filter folder. Extract the filters there and they should work.
I have created 7 loot filters for this build, when I was levelling this character myself. As you can imagine, that was quite a bit of work. So, you know, if you enjoy this guide, give it a like. It really helps. These loot filters you can just import in the game folder, extract them over there and then select them from the loot filter menu.
I have given them a description in terms of level, but that doesn’t mean that exactly at that level you should swap. It’s more of an indication. When you get to a moment in time where a lot of loot drops that isn’t useful anymore, just select the filter for the next level. Loot will get more strict and you’re not wasting time picking up crappy loot.
I’ve made a super strict end-game filter as well, which only shows items that have a tier 5 affix plus other affixes that are useful for the build. Nothing else shows up on this filter. Most base items are hidden, most affixes are hidden, most idols are hidden. Please only use this filter if once again you are discarding a lot of loot you find. If you swap filters too soon, you’ll have issues gearing up, because they are too strict.
Be sure to definitely swap the filter when you’re getting your spellblade mastery. The filter completely changes then, as your playstyle should completely change as well. Which brings us to levelling.
I feel you can’t really level as a spellblade until you get the mastery, so I took elemental nova and went the fire route, to stick to the FireStarter theme. You can pick anything you like honestly, when levelling, but I’d recommend something fiery, because the loot filters are built around that.
You go elemental nova and already take fire shield when you can, and get ele res capped. It provides so much tankiness. Once you reach around level 25, you can do the mastery quest in the End of Time and you can swap your build towards a spell blade. Make sure to swap loot filters as well.
Despecialize any passives you took in the base tree, and put those in the spell blade passive tree. This should give you access to flame reave. Get rid of elemental nova and specialize into Flame Reave. You should now be running Flame Reave, Fire Shield and Flame Ward as specializations. And by this point, you’re already pretty tanky.
The fourth skill you can invest in is Mana Strike, which you should. It’s just a good source of mana, and Firebrand can be done later, at level 49, when you get your final specialization.
From here it’s pretty smooth sailing, just level up your character, your skills as described in the skill section, and you should have no issues really with anything in the monolith of fate. As soon as you realize you’re hardly using Mana Strike anymore, it’s time to swap it out for Enchant Weapon.
Once you’ve made that step, you reached the final form of the build. Congratulations.
Let’s talk some Monolith modifiers
Generally, I don’t mind giving enemies health, crit avoidance, crit chance (because we’re immune to crit anyway), or any of the healing modifiers. Those are all safe modifiers to take, because we do decent damage.
You could give them dodge, although that’s annoying.
Watch out with stuff like enrage or deadly or frenzy. We don’t always do tons of damage, and enrage with a high health modifier in there, can cause entire groups to unleash hell on you and while we are very tanky, and I’ve got plenty of footage where I’m just facetanking half a screen, there are limits to our tankiness. And you usually pass those limits when you give the monsters too many offensive modifiers, so watch out for that.
I would also advice against giving them chance to slow or chill, mostly for your own sanity. Every time I get slowed by a monolith monster, my eye slowly moves towards that letter opener on my desk. Monolith modifiers aren’t fun, in my opinion, but that’s a topic for another video.
Mostly, the monolith modifiers are a nuisance, if anything. You just have to plough through it sometimes, but with this build you’ll succeed for sure.
Here’s the build in action.
There are 2 things you really need to keep track of. Fire Shield should be up. Without it, you have 0% elemental resistances. As soon as it’s down, you will notice fast enough, but then it might be too late. Keep the firebrand stacks at 6 as well, as they are a huge source of armor and ward. This is really important, so make this a priority.
I eventually just created a sort of rotation for myself. Every new monster pack, I start with Firebrand, which has a massive range at 6 stacks. Then I use fire shield and then I just spam flamereave. This way I’m pretty much safe, so I would advise you to play like that as well.
Apart from this, it’s rather straightforward.
I had a lot of fun creating this build, all the way from start to finish. It took a lot of time as well, but I hope it was worth it. Finally, I wanted to bring the Nexus to your attention. Nexus offers content creators their own store to sell games, and then content creators get a little bit of the profit as well. I’ve partnered with these guys and curated a small selection of games for you, all games that I’ve covered on the channel. It’s a great way to support me, so, if you’re thinking about getting Last Epoch, consider getting a Steam key over there. Link below in the description.
I hope you have fun with the build and that the guide was useful. Thanks for watching and making it to the end. See you all soon! Bye bye.