This thread is a replacement for my Witchblade pet build I had posted a few weeks ago; I asked the webmasters to delete the old thread so my posts don’t clutter the forum. The core concepts of the build remain the same, but having three additional permanent pets plus the vastly improved Primal Bond exclusive makes the Conjurer the only proper choice for a build such as this.
No pet build thread can be created without thanking DaShiv for his undeniably amazing work in meticulously detailing pet build strategies and for his incredible Gladiator-farming builds. My build is by no means a Gladiator 170 farmer, but it’s great to see more pet builds run through the old Gladiator 150 gauntlet, which is more than enough for most players who enjoy pet builds.
[u][v.22.214.171.124 EDIT]The new Crucible blessings are unbelievable for this build. With the current set-up, this build reaps the maximum benefits of the Celestial blessings, as our pets were never in any danger from dying. But a Stormcaller Banner for the RR, run 100-130 with banner only, then buy Ulo (resistances) + Amatok (damage) buffs from 130-150. It’s a surefire 100-150 farmer, and if you’re looking to get Legendaries, it’s much more worth it to run 100-150 and keep your blessing health high than it is to go 150-170.
As the above illustrates, this build is Gladiator 170 viable. I used the 4 buffs + Stormcaller banner to see how fast I can do this. Looks like around 20 minutes or so, though some of that is due to low run speed and the stragglers at the end of a wave taking up to 30 seconds to hunt down and finish for the new wave. For Legendary loot purposes, I’d much rather farm 100-150 with one banner + 2 buffs, but here’s to show it can do it.[/u]
The concept of this character is to take advantage of the Shaman’s Pet Retaliation skills as well as our extremely defensive constellation set-up to keep all of our pets alive while waiting for the 1-in-3 chance for a monster retaliation strike (20% for either the Wildshorn Legguards and Briarthorn Band to activate). The build has three fully invested flat OA bonuses (Blood of Dreeg + Emboldening Presence + Harp/Ishtak procs) and mitigates pet build’s weakness to being surrounded and swarmed by investing in Ground Slam (with 2 Briarthorns using it) and taking the Light of Empyiron constellation for a nice Knockdown and damage reduction ability.
Weapon Set 1: Mythical Valepiercer + Stonehide Fleshwarped Bulwark of Imposing Presence
The Cunning and Spirit requirements are very high for my tastes, but allowing the Hellhound to reduce the enemy’s RR without having to spam attacks is well worth it. Even more importantly, this dagger allows our pets to overcap 80% Aether Resistance, which is indispensable for the Aether-dominated expansion. The shield grants your pets an additional 25 Physical Damage, and the prefix/affix combo is incredible - Stonehide takes care of your Pierce Resistance and Stun Duration while pushing your Physical Resistance near 60%, and Imposing Presence gives extra Shield Block Chance and your pets additional OA.
Until you get the Mythical Veilpiercer, a Salazar’s Sovereign Blade with good pet stats (especially pet OA) would be BiS, as you gain an additional pet-scaled pet who has an aura with -15% Physical RR. The unfortunate side-effect of that is that not only do your pets lose the valuable Aether RR, but you have no way of inflicting flat RR. In that case, replace your Imbued Silver with Blessed Steel as you are tanky enough to handle enemy hits.
The shield is an open slot depending on what you have equipped at the time. Mythical Ravna’s Guard gives you stats that best match the MI Shield, with nice Health Regeneration to boot. Mythical Final Stop also gives you Stun Resistance, a huge amount of armor, flat Retaliation damage (can’t let the pets have all the fun), bonuses to Oak Skin, and a granted skill that reduces your opponents DA, a very nice thing if you feel your pets are lacking OA. While you are leveling, Empowered Defender of Devil’s Crossing has the best DA bonuses you’ll find, and the knockdown proc, resistances, and Aether damage reduction makes this shield great to use. The shield is craftable, so seek out the Black Legion smith to obtain extra Aether resistance.
Components: Purified Salt and Imbued Silver
Head: Mythical Beastcaller’s Cowl
The added physical damage, the 250% damage increase, and 30% total speed proc, what else can you ask for? Craft this through Algrim at Devil’s Crossing for the Increased Armor bonus.
Shoulders: Mythical Beastcaller’s Shoulderpads
Version 126.96.36.199 added new Poison and Acid Resistance to these shoulders, meaning we can switch around our components to make our resistances even more secure.
Component: Sacred Plating
Hands: Mythical Overlord’s Iron Grip
Provides some much needed pet Crit Damage and %OA bonuses, while the DA modifier to Bonds of Bysmiel fits our build mold perfectly.
Component: Ugdenbog Leather
Feet: Mythical Fiendflesh Greaves
Not only do these greaves provide more pet bonuses, but 10,000 damage absorption, since flat damage absorption comes after all the other reductions due to armor and resists, is a greatly appreciated boon.
You can also consider the Mythical Grim Harvest Boots if you are too low on DA and your pets can use the Elemental Resistance.
Component: Mark of Mogdrogen
Belt: Mythical Shadowfiend Cord
Nice pet damage, pet OA% bonuses, and valuable pet resistances with free skill points coming from the +Occultist skills. If you do not have this item, a crafted Malmouth Arcane Girdle or an MI Lunal Valgoth Girdle with Taskmaster’s prefix would be the next best bet.
Component: Spellscorched Plating
Pants: Mythical Wildshorn Legguards
The equipment that sparked the idea for this build, these pants are simply irreplaceable. 600% Retaliation Damage all in one place. With update 188.8.131.52, you only need to use Ancient Armor plate to get your Armor Absorption to 100%, which means you get much more use out of your armor.
Until you get this piece, Bysmiel pants with some sort of pet Resistances (most notably Taskmaster’s) is an alternate idea.
Component: Ancient Armor Plate
Chest Armor: Mythical Beastcaller’s Shroud
Gives us valuable bonuses (Health, DA, Elemental Resistances, pet resistances), so it doesn’t feel like a waste simply to give us the set bonus
Component: Living Armor
Amulet: Mythical Heart of the Mountain
This was the hardest choice to make, especially since Mythical Sovereign Ruby of Domination is extremely good considering our comparatively low crit damage. I personally find that +2 to Shaman skills between all of my equipment is important for all-around purposes, and having Vitality Resistance, pet Armor, and a fifth permanent pet that provides good freeze crowd control allows me to breathe a bit easier.
Component: Seal of Ancestry
Ring 1: Mythical Spiritbinder Glyph
A ring that gives a great amount of pet OA, while also granting bonuses to Primal Spirit and Mogdrogen’s Pact as well as a nice proc that gives an extra 10% Pet Crit
Component: Runebound Topaz
Ring 2: Mythical Briarthorn Band
Health Bonuses, Elemental Resists, +Summon Briarthorn skill bonus and Pet Retaliation damage. This is the other centerpiece of the build,
but it only makes sense to equip it if you also have the Mythical Wildshorn Legguards. If you do not have them, Mythical Ring of the Black Matriarch is BiS for valuable Pierce Resistance, Vitality Resistance, 2 extra skill points at your disposal, and a very nice Physical RR proc.
Component: Runebound Topaz
Medal: Mythical Beastcaller’s Talisman
Chaos Resistance and bonuses to our Pet’s Physical Damage make it an easy choice to add to the Beastcaller set bonuses.
Component: Black Tallow
Relic: Primal Instinct
Gives additional Piercing Retaliation, Pet Health and Speed, and +Skills in Shaman. The critters aren’t the main focus like other builds, but you can’t say no to extra damage. Dirge of Arkovia is another alternative that gives you a permanent pet and shores up some resistances, but you would need to replace the Shaman skills to keep it from becoming outclassed. Malmouth Stormcaster is a nice weapon that can serve if you feel like using the Dirge Pet.
Augments: Mogdrogen’s Blessing for the jewelry, Ravager’s Eye for the weapon slots, & Mankind’s Vigil for the armor. If you feel your pets need additional Aether/Chaos resistance, replace one of the jewelry augments with Mender’s Powder.
The OA vs DA factor is found in the main website under this website: http://grimdawn.com/guide/gameplay/combat.php#q19
Using the Swarmlings’ pre-expac value of 1833 OA- to provide an example- their OA has multiple additive multipliers that function just as well as the pet %OA bonus in the character sheet. Blood of Dreeg adds 144 OA, while Emboldening Presence adds another 102. Add this with either Ishtak’s or Harp’s OA bonus (130 and 110 respectively) and that comes to a flat OA of 2189 if we just take Harp’s bonuses. Multiply this total by the character sheet %OA bonus (55 in the above Grimtools) and you have a Swarmling OA of 3393. I have found this to be more than adequate for the Briarthorns to consistently apply the Assassin’s Mark proc on enemies.
This build also stacks pet retaliation, taken from the following sources:
- Wildshorn Legguards - 4000 Poison Retaliation over 5 seconds
- Wildshorn Legguards - 4000 Piercing Retaliation
- Briarthorn Band - 3000 Piercing Retaliation (1-in-3 chance of having one of these two activate)
- Primal Instinct - 995 Piercing Retaliation
- Briarthorn’s Natural Retaliation - 585 Piercing Retaliation
- Wildshorn Legguards - 600%
- Briarthorn Band - 150%
- Shephard’s Crook - 300%
- Stone Form - 220%
- Emboldening Presence - 128%
- Oak Skin - 100%
- Hound - 30% (lol)
NOTE: This is the definition of a lazy pet build, all I did was kept the Wendigo Totem and Blood of Dreeg on cooldown while having my hand over the keyboard to take screenshots to show the build’s Retaliation damage potential. Thanks to the constant healing, Fabius barely scratches me. 87K Retaliation, get rekt, Fabius.