[2.6] EK NOVA Pathfinder/Occultist Millions of DPS. UPDATED w/ Leveling Guide!


https://www.pathofexile.com/account/view-profile/luckyshin/characters - see char "luckierShin"


this time I'm going without Rumi's or spell block, will probably switch to Rathpith Globe + Rumi's later.
As I got the leech enchant on boots, I ditched Blashpemy Warlord's Mark in favor of Haste to run maps faster.


https://www.pathofexile.com/account/view-profile/luckyshin/characters - see char "ShinDiesAlot"

On this variation, I'm playing Brinerot Whalers and have less spell block. I would have max block with a legacy Rumi's, and luckily having Shavs and other items drop (to sell) I've been able to recover from multiple RIPs easily. I lost legacy Rumi's and have yet to reacquire one, but most of my gear is pretty maxed out now instead of going for legacy Rumi's first. Could use a higher ES chest/helm, but I'm sitting at 10,444 ES. I also don't have Energy From Within, instead have been using Intuitive Leap to get Overcharged. Check my character's tree to see how this is used.


For Elemental Weakness, I swap Quicksilver Flasks:

MARCH 13, 2017 (this character RIP'd sadly, one shot by Invasion boss, avoid Invasion content)

Currently level 83. I can't afford the more expensive bits of gear, or even to really color my gear properly.

https://www.pathofexile.com/account/view-profile/luckyshin/characters - see char "unluckyshn"


I decided to try Rathpith this time - since I am a ways away from +1 curses Lazhwar. the upside is I can achieve max Spell Block with Rathpith+Rainbow Stride+Reckless Defense+Conqueror's Potency. the downside is less damage and ES. When I have money, I'll eventually get a dope ES shield and switch to the Lazhwar.

I'm running quicksilver flask + wand for now. when I replace qs flask with vinktars, I will move to dagger + whirling blades + fortify. first, I need to get dual-curse and replace silver flask with Witchfire Brew.

281 unreserved mana with 80 mana cost EK and only Warlords Mark to sustain is working absolutely fine.
Wish I could 3 green this vaal regalia and start using Void Manipulation instead of Increased Critical Strikes. Once I get Vinktars I will drop Warlords Mark for temp chains/proj weakness.

chaos and crit? doesn't that not work?

Correct, it doesn't, but remember we're not using a chaos spell. We're using a phys spell. We scale our chaos damage off of our physical damage using "Gain x% Physical Damage as Extra Chaos Damage" simply with Atziri flask and a high flask effectiveness, 5% from Force Shaper on the tree, and we get additional damage from Added Chaos Damage. The Added Chaos Damage won't be multiplied by crit, but it will do more consistent damage than Increased Critical Damage (which adds about the same DPS or 1% more), as well, it gives us more leech for atziri flask, and adds to our poison damage(which elemental damage like Added Fire would not).
I have tried, in Path of Building, to go all chaos or all crit, and I found that this sort of "middle ground" does the most damage.


18 points www.poeurl.com/beQh
45 points www.poeurl.com/beQs
68 points www.poeurl.com/beRS
90 points www.poeurl.com/beR1
bandits: passive -> cast speed -> endurance charge(or power charge if not HC/your choice)

ascendancy path: Master Herbalist - > Nature's Adrenaline (to speed through to maps)
after Merciless lab, refund Nature's Adrenaline for Nature's Boon + Master Alchemist.
Uber lab: take Nature's Adrenaline again.

I used to think the flask charges from Veteran Bowyer were useful, but without it I haven't noticed any issues at all with flask upkeep. The damage it gives you is garbage especially considering we use Void Manipulation. I recommend just getting Nature's Adrenaline instead at any point in the game.

There is no level requirement for the Ring of Blades jewel! Use it as soon as possible (11 skill points is as soon as possible). This makes leveling with EK even easier than leveling with Blade Vortex...

dual wield these. move your EK link over to the Reverb Rod when you get it at level 24. We will use them until A3 Cruel when we switch to a 4-link.

EK + Added Fire + Increased Critical Strikes

INITIALLY, run Hatred + Herald of Ash - put them in the Lifesprig for +1 gem level.

key to speeding through content:

and get these as soon as you hit level 24/27

You also want a Bubbling/Panicked life flask and a Mana or Hybrid flask.

get all ES gear with +Life on it. use a heavy belt/get strength on items to allow us to use CWDT + Immortal Call + Increased Duration + Tempest Shield link. It is useful to buy one ARMOR/ES item, so that you can easily link it 3 red - 1 blue. Also, for your EK 4 link, it is useful to buy one EVASION/ES item so that you can link it 2 green - 1 red - 1 blue.

Don't worry too much about resists in normal, just get some for the bosses to rush through it (pop on a Sapphire ring for Merveil for example, Topaz for Dominus, etc.). When you get to Cruel, try to have actual decent resistances. When you get to Merciless, do not leave Lioneye's Watch without maxing your resists.

and start using Blade Vortex + PCoC + Ice Bite + Innervate as soon as you get them.

you want to hit up Siosa in the library in CRUEL and get Pierce as your 4th link. near the middle/end of Cruel, you can upgrade your weapons to a rare wand/dagger + a rare ES shield(with spell dmg/crit). Once you get here, also pick up Blasphemy + Warlord's Mark. Drop Herald of Ash for this. You will only have 15% unreserved mana, but you have mana leech and are still running a mana potion.

you can go CI from any level around 65 - 75. Refund your health nodes and skill CI. Swap Hatred for Discipline, and now we have 30% unreserved mana and we ditch our life/hybrid potions. Buy ATZIRI'S PROMISE immediately at 68.

Next up is to switch into block + spell block. Ditch your boots for Rainbowstride, and grab either Rathpith Globe or Stone of Lazhwar. Get yourself the best Rumi's you can. 20% block is important, 8 or 9 spell block is fine.

Next, use either Doedre's or +1 curse ammy (or be an occultist) and pick up your Witchfire Brew - ditching your silver flask for it. We already have Innervate anyway.

Finally, ditch your QS flask for a Vinktars. Drop Warlord's Mark for Temporal Chains. Switch to a dagger with attack speed and added cold damage to spells, and link a movement skill + fortify + faster attacks. Start using Enduring Cry for endurance charges.

If you don't have dual curse, but you do have your vinktars + witchfire brew, simply run Hatred + Discipline. see the rest of the guide for ideal end game setup/details.

--> Feel free to ask me any questions on my stream or in game <--

no power charges casual run, twinned Shaped Atoll
this is before path of building optimization, poison will be doing a ton more damage. I do grab power charges before the bosses, that's the gist of blade vortex+pcoc.


Ring of Blades


I played/tested this build as regular EK. With this new Ethereal Knives jewel, the build becomes easier to play as you don't have to target the EK cone. Now you play like an Ice/Shock nova build, but with way better damage.

You can go Occultist or Pathfinder for this build. Instead of the usual Pros and Cons I'll compare the two classes.

* Faster Clear Speed (better attack/cast/movement speed and DPS)
* More Block chance from flask efficiency and additional jewel socket in tree for Reckless Defense.
* Still > 10k ES
* Immune to Status Ailments.
* Better defense from flask efficiency, especially when swapping flasks for specific bosses/map mods.

TREE: new tree, 100% pierce + overcharged with intuitive leap
max damage/no pierce lv 67

* Slightly less DPS
* More Energy Shield (roughly 1-2000 more). Use this class if you want to dual wield.
* Uninterrupted ES Regen mechanic (is kinda useless since leech keeps us at full ES)
* Cannot be stunned on full ES - drops Valyrium for Ming's Heart for better dps, and still more ES.
* Has to use two regular flasks to account for bleed + shock, or use Death's Door + Rathpith Globe
* You can go for the free curse, making the build cheaper, but with less DPS. Most dps version is on the linked tree.
* 4 Green 2 Blue Vaal Regalia since she needs to run a Poison gem, unless you wanna drop Pierce, which trust me you don't.

TREE: www.poeurl.com/bbfi Simply swap Added Chaos Damage for Poison gem.

Currently, I am playing as Pathfinder. More flask effectiveness is essentially better defense. And as we can reach over 10k ES on Pathfinder, as well as do plenty of DPS without dual-curse, it's clear why one would choose this class for Hardcore.

Alternative choices & Jewels on tree:

-Get Overcharged (4 points) instead of the Method to Madness (4 points) chaos damage node
-Go Leadership (3 points)/aura AOE (1 point, at Charisma) if you want to use blasphemy
-Go for Potency of Will duration nodes (6 points) instead of ES (path of the savant)/chaos damage nodes
-If using Victario's, grab Shadow's frenzy charge (3 points)
-or Void Battery, grab Shadow's power charge (3 points)

Piercing Shots, Fatal Toxins, Heartseeker were all considered and determined to be inferior point usage compared to simply getting chaos damage nodes.

Before the Rumi's nerf, this build had max block. Now we use 1 Reckless Defense jewel to make up for it, putting us at 62% attack/71% spell block for the pathfinder. 55%/52% on occultist - she has less Rumi's efficiency and doesn't have room for Reckless defense. Of course, if you can get that legacy Rumi's, use it, fuck "ethics" :)

Unique jewels on the trees:

* Conqueror's Potency
* Energy From Within
* Ring of Blades (the slot closest to Vaal Pact)
* Reckless Defense


6L: Ethereal Knives + Spell Echo + Void Manipulation + Pierce + Added Chaos Damage + Controlled Destruction

Void Manipulation is better after you get atziri flask, until then use Increased Critical Damage

4L: Blade Vortex + Power Charge on Critical + Ice Bite + Innervate
4L: CWDT + Immortal Call + Increased Duration + Tempest Shield/Vaal Spell/Golem
4L: Discipline + Blasphemy + Temporal Chains + Enduring Cry

3L: Shield Charge + Faster Attacks + Fortify
OR Flame Dash + Faster Casting + Portal/whatever

3L: Vaal Clarity + Vaal Haste + Increased Duration
3L: Wither + Spell Totem + Summon Fire Golem(unlinked)

With Flame Dash you can also run 2L Spell Totem, Wither + unlinked Flame Dash and then also run Vaal Skills in your other 3L.

Link to my profile - See character immortalShin for example gear. hit 95 in Essence HC, then I ran a -Max, extra fire damage, ele weakness map, with +ele damage atlas mods, and forgot to swap my basalt for a ruby flask, because I was playing while tired af.

We want to use different flasks and skill gems, but mostly the same items.

All damage calculations are done with an Apep's Rage wand and otherwise the exact same gear as this character.

for the next league, I want to use several items that will bring up the DPS subsantially:

- craft a Wand with Essence of Delirium for Decay on Hit.. or Essence of Horror for charges on kill.. or simply a good cast speed + spell dmg/crit wand. Also needs added cold damage to spells.
- craft a +2 to aura gems Hubris Circlet instead of using Heretic's Veil.
- craft +3.5% to base crit Sorcerer Gloves.
- craft Body Armour with Essence of Insanity for 3 seconds Onslaught when Hit.
- find a ring with Strength + Resists that you can craft + ES or % ES on.
- get accuracy mods on gear for better chance to hit on Frenzy

For bosses, swap Ice Bite with Frenzy, and Innervate with Increased Critical Strikes.
If you maintain Onslaught via essence mod, permanently replace Innervate with Increased Crits.

For general mapping swap Wither + Spell Totem for Vaal Haste + Increased Duration.
If you want to also swap out Tempest Shield for a vaal spell, you can move the golem over to the CWDT setup, then have a 3 link of Vaal Haste + Vaal Clarity + Increased Duration.

It is up to you to swap out your flasks properly depending on the map mods/boss. You can still reach 1M DPS with Taste of Hate, Vinktar, and a Ruby flask for that 9% boost to 84% max resistances. You can run -Max res maps, or Elemental Weakness maps, if you have these flasks. Swap Witchfire Brew+Diamond flask for Ruby/Sapphire/Basalt of Staunching when necessary.

For the most DPS, the flask priority order is:
Atziri's > Witchfire > Diamond Flask > Sin's Rebirth -> Taste of Hate > Vinktar's

Always Rumi's. Always either Vinktars or Taste of Hate for lightning (shock) and cold damage (freeze for ice bite). I'd choose Added damage to spells variant Vinktars, and craft added cold damage to spells on the wand.

Get used to using your skills in the proper order to use the build efficiently, practice makes perfect and you want to practice correctly. Don't just sloppily hit flasks, randomly enduring cry, forget charges..

Obviously, SHIELD CHARGE is optional, use FLAME DASH if you have a Wand, or simply run with your QS flask.
Enter map, kill one pack with BV to gain max charges:


Kill several packs:

Maintain charges:

Kill another pack:

Maintain, Kill, etc..


If there is a pack in the boss room, treat it like a normal map and gain max charges from the pack by killing it with Blade Vortex first, then just pop vaal haste, flask up and kill the boss with EK.

If you are facing a Guardian/Shaper/etc., you have to get the charges directly from the boss. As such, we can't use Ice Bite or Innervate. So we would swap them, for Frenzy + Increased Critical Strikes. Then you can get your frenzy charges at a safe distance, and spend less time standing on top of the boss to get your power charges from BV.


Then, use shield charge to re-position yourself as necessary, and EK until dead. Boss fights shouldn't take longer than one flask duration.


Frenzy charges add more damage than power charges (3 frenzy ~= 4 power in this build), and are often neglected in spell builds. While clearing, you can easily maintain them with Blade Vortex + Ice Bite. Using a wand, we can also use manual Frenzy. Frenzy will reach 3 charges in 5 attacks, at 60% hit chance. Any accuracy on gear will raise this substantially: Just 250 AR will raise the hit chance by 10%.
This means it only takes about 3 seconds to gain your frenzy charges.
( 3 charges / .6 hit chance = 5 hits / 2 aps = 2.5 seconds)

Power charges are easily maintained with Blade Vortex + PCOC. Without Power Charges, Blade Vortex still has 55% chance to crit.

This is not taking into account the Essence of Insanity or Horror buff that we will socket our Blade Vortex/Frenzy link into. Either 16% more Attack+Cast speed, or +3.5% base crit chance.

Endurance charges come from Enduring Cry.

Note on Shield Charge, Whirling Blades, Daggers vs Wands:

As we can't use shield charge with wands, obviously you continue to use a quicksilver flask when using Wands - instead of using Witchfire Brew. The purpose of this guide is to show the max dps you can achieve with ideal end-game gear. The cost of a dagger that deals the same amount of damage as a wand is much, much greater than the cost of a good wand. You can get through most or all of the game's content with a Wand and a Quicksilver flask, and when you can afford +1 curse and a Witchfire Brew, you will need to drop your Quicksilver flask. Without quicksilver flask, you will need to get a dagger so that you can use Shield Charge or Whirling Blades. Aside from an Essence of Misery dagger most daggers are going to be weaker than wands because they lack Cast Speed. You will, of course, make up for this by doing more dps with the extra curse and/or flask that you replace QS flask with.

Just wanted to clarify that bit about Shield Charge and Wand/Dagger. I fully recommend that you run Wand with a QS Flask of Adrenaline, and then late in the game when you have accumulated wealth and want to upgrade to 2-curse/Witchfire Brew, go ahead and get a dagger and use a movement skill to replace that QS flask.

Any ideas to make it better?
Last edited by luckyshin on Apr 13, 2017, 9:14:04 PM
Last bumped on Jul 23, 2017, 11:03:51 PM
reserved for screenshots etc.

With Vaal Haste + all buffs.

With 10 stacks Wither instead of Vaal Haste, DPS vs Shaper is 950,000
Last edited by luckyshin on Mar 1, 2017, 7:30:42 PM
This is the build I will play as well in HC legacy.

I think a consuming dark will be a nice dps boost on this build.

Could you explain to me how the leech work? I tough it only works on physical skill. If this is correct, it means that the leech will only be applied to the base dps of EK. Doesn't seems that much for me.

Note: change the BV for EK in the clearing sections.

Hey was very interested in a similar idea. You mind sharing your PathOfBuilding share code so I can test different setups and share my feedback/suggestions?
Could you make a couple of trees showing the leveling path you recommend? Also how expensive is this build to gear? Is it a good league starter?
Interested in seeing if this would be a good league starter too.
flxz wrote:
This is the build I will play as well in HC legacy.
I think a consuming dark will be a nice dps boost on this build.

Could you explain to me how the leech work? I tough it only works on physical skill. If this is correct, it means that the leech will only be applied to the base dps of EK. Doesn't seems that much for me.

Note: change the BV for EK in the clearing sections.

Leech comes from Atziri's Promise and Vessel of Vinktar. We do plenty of chaos damage. Consider +50% flask effect on Atziri's Promise: 37.5% physical as chaos, 3% chaos leech. You can also get the lab enchant on boots for sustaining mana better without Vinktars. But either way, leech is great with just those two flasks.

Blade Vortex is intentional in the clearing section.. You want to kill your first pack with blade vortex, this way you get frenzy charges from Ice Bite, onslaught from Innervate, and power charges from PCOC. From them on, you can just keep a couple of stacks of Blade Vortex up so that you continue picking up charges when you shield charge into packs.

Consuming dark? It could save Occultist from using a Poison gem, but otherwise this item is for fire to chaos conversion. We don't deal any fire damage. In Path of Building, you can test these things as I have, and see that the best DPS comes from an Apep's Rage, a Void Battery, or a good rare wand/dagger.

I started Essence league with this build. Go hybrid until you have good ES gear, then spec CI (level 65-75). Start with two health pots, a quicksilver, diamond, and silver flask. Start using an Atziri's flask as soon as you hit 68. drop your health flasks and quicksilver for a Rumi's, Basalt, and Atziri's. You can run blasphemy warlord's mark until you have Atziri's/Vinktar.

Will add path of building link and make level 65 + level 85 skill trees
Last edited by luckyshin on Mar 2, 2017, 12:49:12 PM
Im interested in this build and a lot of people are talking about EK now. How would one level this build and even start a new league with it?
How does it do against guardians and shaper?

Can you post a video of basic gameplay, like you clearing a map?
Leveling guide / WIP to be added to guide..

Start a shadow, kill hillock, stash an EK gem. Or level with freezing pulse and benefit from the early points of projectile damage, then buy a quality EK gem ASAP and level it.

Simply run: EK + Added Fire + Faster Casting
Ultimately run 4-links:

EK + Added Fire + Spell Echo + Pierce
Bladefall + Spell Totem + Added Fire + Increased Critical Strikes
Blade Vortex - Power Charge on Critical - Increased Critical Strikes
auras: Herald of Ash + Hatred

If you prefer you, can also use Bladefall in place of Blade Vortex for generating charges.

Once you get Poison from ascendancy, drop Added Fire for Void Manipulation.
5 link add Increased Critical Damage, 6th add Controlled Destruction.

Once you get to Merciless, or even Merciless Dried Lake, you can swap auras for Discipline + Blasphemy + Warlord's Mark. You will want to add Increased AOE gem to the blasphemy.

Blasphemy-Warlords Mark really sucks in the early levels because the AOE is shit. Even now, the AOE at level 20 has been nerfed massively. Making EK in a nova will help us use this shittier AOE better, because we're going to be getting in the middle of packs, so I still plan to run Blasphemy+Temp Chains and the Witchfire Brew in the end game.
Last edited by luckyshin on Mar 2, 2017, 4:06:47 PM

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