[] Tactical Rites Lightning Ritualist: Pet/Lightning Build


Hello, my name is AetherFire and this is my first build attempt in Grim Dawn. It is not perfect due to lack of gear for Ritualist class but it is fun to play and it is a great party support with 15 pets to take aggro, good damage, and good defenses.

I hope Ritualist gets more love from the devs in future patches in the form of new legendaries, and MIs. In it’s current state, it is not a great summoner although it has everything necessary.

Note: At a later date, I could add leveling tips section (I leveled it with whatever i got) but for now, it is just as it is.

I hope you enjoy it. And sorry for being a forum/image-edit noob xD

Special Thanks:
DaShiv for enabling a great summoner possibilities and providing Pet Mechanics knowledge. Link to his Night King Build which I draw inspiration from.
Reapersgaze for his great ideas such as using lightning and some devotions for my build
Shrukn for providing knowledge on my skill tree

“Now I call my army of the dead, the Cauldron Born, arise, my messengers of death, our time has arrived!”

I know that Cabalist has more popularity and gear options since AoM released and Conjurer was the best before AoM and still has better defenses but I wanted to play as a Ritualist (Necromancer + Shaman) for it’s great survivability options and achieve at least as much DPS. To meet my playstyle preferences which is mostly tactical instead of entering the fight and facetank mobs, I designed this build and wanted to share with you guys.

At first, I tried Vitality based pet/character damage with http://www.grimtools.com/db/items/8798 (Guardian of Death’s Gates 2H Axe), and different gear. This was the result:

300k pet damage which was too slow for Gladiator 140+ and in Mad Queen fight I got wiped because I couldn’t replace dead pets fast enough. Even if I could do so, the fight would be so slow and painful that would denote this build wasn’t for anyone who wants over-the-top results. Cabalist is better for Vitality dmg, anyway.



Tactical Solo Campaign: If you have some summoner gear beforehand, this build is pretty fun to do all campaign content solo. Since you are not invincible as tank builds, you can play this build with field tactics and strategic thinking rather than facerolling everyone. I’ll write about the tactics below.

Excellent Party Play: This is where the build shines! Once you’re set, you can boost your friends, join people in multiplayer, and go Crucible Gladiator with a party that you’ll support with your undying army. Challenger 150 with 2 x 80 levels was smooth. And we topped the score at Gladiator with a full 100 lvl party.

Triple T3 Devotions: Ultos for DMG & RR, Dying God for Insane Pet DMG, and Aeon’s Hourglass for spammable pets and buffs.

Good Defenses: 14k life. 2890 DA, and almost 3k effective DA (after OA reduction). Energy is mostly up. All resists maxed. 30% Stun reduction. So many pets to take aggro. 135% Run Speed. 78% Slow Resist. 6% Dodge/Deflect. 18% Physical resist. 30% Trap resist.

Great AOE Clear and Fast Hero Kills: 100+ Trash Mobs and Heros in campaign are easy.


This build is NOT for first characters! In order to max your own resists, you’ll need tons of components, and Reputation Augments. Also there is chance of death at Ultimate Nemesis, when played wrong.

Needs a party for Gladiator: This build can NOT clear more than 50+ Gladiator Waves solo, so, it is not for high end Crucible solo! Some bosses, such as Mad Queen (she can leech) is a stalemate due to low Pet OA. And Nemesis monsters can kill pets though they are spammable. In Challenger Crucible I can kill Nemesis within the time limit, but not in Gladiator 50+ Solo.

3 Hard to obtain items: Bysmiel-Sect pants (MI) and crafting mats for Stormbringer of Malmouth are hard to obtain. Also Dirge of Arkovia relic is painful to craft.

Cabalist is better in Burst Damage/RR. If you want 999999999 mil DPS, and if you don’t like think-before-act playstyle you won’t like this. If you are a field tactician who knows where to stand, when to buff, how to stall, when to tactically withdraw, etc. you’ll love this build.

Tactical Lightning Summoner All the augments and components are on the grimtools.
<<<Myhtical Beastcaller’s Set except Shoulders>>>

Crafting – <<<COMING SOON>>>

Weapon – http://www.grimtools.com/db/items/9324 Myhtical Spark of Ultos
Off-hand – http://www.grimtools.com/db/items/7727 Stormbringer of Malmouth

Amulet – http://www.grimtools.com/db/items/8989 Mythical Sovereign Ruby of Domination
Rings – 2 x http://www.grimtools.com/db/items/9035 Mythical Glyph of Kelphat’Zoth
Medal – http://www.grimtools.com/db/items/8960 Mythical Beastcaller’s Talisman

Relic – http://www.grimtools.com/db/items/8218 Dirge of Arkovia

Helm – http://www.grimtools.com/db/items/9147 Mythical Beastcaller’s Cowl
Shoulders – http://www.grimtools.com/db/items/9193”]Mythical Mantle of the Patron
Chest – http://www.grimtools.com/db/items/9254 Mythical Beastcaller’s Shroud
Hands http://www.grimtools.com/db/items/9113 Mythical Bonescavenger’s Deathgrips
Pants – http://www.grimtools.com/db/items/8157 Stonehide Bysmiel-Sect Legguards of Kings
Boots – http://www.grimtools.com/db/items/9210 Mythical Fiendflesh Mantle


First start with either Blue or Red. Then get Raven. Arrange your devotion queue according to take Widow and Behemoth first. Then move on to T3s. You will have to remove the Crossroads eventually. Finally, add 1 point to Bysmiel’s Bonds.

• Viper https://grimdawn.gamepedia.com/Viper
• Lizard (for HP Regen) https://grimdawn.gamepedia.com/Lizard / Eel (for more DA & Pierce Res) https://grimdawn.gamepedia.com/Eel
• Wretch https://grimdawn.gamepedia.com/Wretch
• Fiend https://grimdawn.gamepedia.com/Fiend
• Sailor’s Guide https://grimdawn.gamepedia.com/Sailor's_Guide
• Raven https://grimdawn.gamepedia.com/Raven

• Widow https://grimdawn.gamepedia.com/Widow
• Behemoth https://grimdawn.gamepedia.com/Behemoth
• Bysmiel’s Bonds (only 1 pt) https://grimdawn.gamepedia.com/Bysmiel's_Bonds

• Ultos
• Dying God https://grimdawn.gamepedia.com/Dying_God
• Aeon’s Hourglass https://grimdawn.gamepedia.com/Aeon's_Hourglass


“The dead can’t disobey orders, never surrender, and don’t stop fighting when a random body part falls off.”

Your Pets are your Soldiers to fight and die for you:

WIND DEVIL: Max 3. This is your main spammable AOE Damage Dealer & Debuff Applier pet. Summon at least 2 of them before important encounters. It normally lives for 12 seconds, but Spark of Ultos adds another 5 seconds to that. Raging Tempest gives you -35 Ele RR and with Hand of Ultos procs, you’ll get another -25 Ele RR, count Viper proc which is another 20% Ele RR = -80 Ele RR. Add that -35 Lightning RR from Arcane Bomb and you’ll get total -115 Lightning RR & -95 OA Reduction. Not to forget that 46% Impaired Aim for 3 secs from the main skill that adds to your defensive strategy.

Note: Sometimes they go off route in fight, out of the blue. Always try to keep them at the largest mob pack or boss.

F2: Briathorn (Shaman): 1.5 secs stun. Always summon it first for easy tactical withdrawal with F2. You can use Briar to stun nearby enemies if you took aggro from pets. (F2 + LMB to the mob chasing you, and retreat).

F3: Skeletal Servant (Relic): This is your personel bodyguard, if you will. When every other pet dies, this selfless servant will keep standing to guard you from harm. So that you can resummon your other pets in time. It has some base Vitality dmg that will be turned into Lightning dmg. Also procs Arcane Bomb!

F4: Blight (aka Jihad) Fiend (Necro): This ugly guy’s sole purpose is to Blight Burst into pack of mobs and confuse them for 2 seconds. That will be your Window of Opportunity to execute your tactics. Also you can use it to suicide bomb for burst damage. If it is dying, just press the keybind to explode it. It also reduce 127 Mob DA that will add to your pet OA immensely, in addition to Fumble/Impaired Aim for 2 secs.

Skellies (Necro): Max 6. These guys are proc keepers rather than damage focus. They apply Flame Torrent, and they die a lot. However, I tried to squize as much damage as possible before they die. Stormbringer of Malmouth converts all of their Vita dmg to Lightning dmg if you can roll 100% conversion mod in it. I could only get my hands on a 90% conversion, but you might be luckier than me.

Spirits (Hands): Max 3. Just fillers. Their Vit dmg converted to Lightning.

TOTAL: 15 = [9 Perma + 6 Temporary] Pets for your tactical advantage.


!Rule of Thumb!: Be patient as your pets maintain a good aggro; until then only use buffs and wendigo totem. After their threat skills are used, you can go with everything you got.

Hotbar Management:

• Put your pet attack skill in LMB or RMB. This is important. The other one should be either Savagery or Mark of Torment, depending on the situation.
• Put all your auras in the second / alternative hotbar by pressing “Y” ingame and use them there.
• Put 1 of the buffs to second / alt. hotbar’s 1 hotkey.
• Use keybinds (Q, W, A, D, X, “, F1) for summons, however you’re comfortable.

Aggro Management To-Do List:

• Sending the right pet to right mobs with F2, F3, F4
• Also, moving the skellies right near the mob pack/boss (for Flame Torrent proc)
• Standing in the right place where you can’t be harmed or take aggro
• Wait 2-3 seconds after your pets attacked
• Use Bone Harvest / Hungering Void proc only for finisher (with the support of wendigo totem)
• Grasping Vines procs Time Dilated, so use it only after all your skills are in CD (to avoid aggro)

Note: If you’re having trouble AVOIDING AGGRO, try Normal Pet Stance instead of Aggressive Stance and commanding them with Pet Attack; First to move them near the boss, then attack consecutively.

List of Auras:
• Mogdrogen’s Pact (Shammy)
• Master Of Death (Necro)
• Spark of Ultos (Weapon)
• Electrifying Weapons (Hell Bane’s Ammo) http://www.grimtools.com/db/items/2847
• Aether-Ward (Purified Salt) http://www.grimtools.com/db/items/2857
Press “Y” ingame, and put your auras in the alternative hotbar.

List of Buffs:
• Call of the Beast http://grimdawn.wikia.com/wiki/Beastcaller's_Cowl
• Call of the Grave https://grimdawn.gamepedia.com/Call_of_the_Grave_(Skill)
• Sovereign http://www.grimtools.com/db/items/8989

Note: If you put everything in your hotbar, 1 buff will be left for alternative hotbar. In order to not cheat, I either don’t use it (in intense fights) or I binded it at “1” at alt. hotbar so, I quickly press “Y, 1, Y” for max buffs. You can also use an AHK Macro for this, but I won’t help you about that.

Skill Rotation:
• Always summon 2-3 Wind Devils before the encounter
• Sustain the Pets with Wendigo Totem and all 3 Buffs (on CD) at bosses
• Apply Grasping Vines when everything is on CD (for TD proc)
• Fast Reinforcements with TD
• Detonate Jihad Fiend by pressing the hotkey again after summoning for Burst Damage
• Use Reaping Strike only when the boss health is below 10% to finish him, otherwise you can use it for some burst along with your Buffs but that’d take aggro quickly.


Reserved for Future Updates…

Pics on attachment.

Mad Queen is dead but took 2 mins, other than that i can melt Nemesis or bosses easily.


This was a super interesting read for me! You’ve really put a lot of effort into a build, that noone apparently plays =).

I’m fairly new to the game, dabbled with it a bit when the level cap was 40 - and just picked it up again when AoM was released. I really wanted to play a ritualist - Necro and Shaman are some of my favorite classes in most games, and combined with lightning - seemed yummy.

I don’t need a top-tier build to enjoy myself - but I really find that after hitting AoM content in Ultimate, I’m super struggling now (level 100). Mostly because my pets are dying left and right. I’ve only found/created maybe 1/3 of the gear that you also use - but unfortunately not the items that give my pets enough resist.

So pray to the RNG gods - and farm easier stuff for upgrades? Or are the other ways to boost my pets till I get better gear? Maybe swap devotions around - or any skills I could “drop” and take some defensive stuff instead till the drops come?

I’m glad that you enjoyed the read. And playing this build is like playing a strategy game (kinda) xD

Devotions are important.

Aeon’s Hourglass - Time Dilated proc was DaShiv’s brilliant idea for pet reinforcements and im using it instead of tanky pets. Let them die, and I resummon in no time. This way i can also have 100% uptime on buffs, too.

Easiest way to get the gear btw, is entering Crucible at highest possible difficulty with a good party. First they help you, and after you geared up You help them.

Excellent - thx for all the tips, I’ll try it out tonight. I’m totally hooked on this playstyle =)

Thanks for this guide :smiley:

any updates for

How’d you manage to put 134 points into Physique and 18.75 in Spirit? Anything I’m missing out on?

Thanks for the tips; I’m really enjoying this Ritualist. One question, though: How do you get Aeon’s Hourglass with only 16 blue affinities, when that constellation requires 18?