This build was coceived after getting Blazeheart sword from Dahlia quest for the 4th time and deciding to spend a lot of time in Grimtools theorycrafting instead of doing some actual work related stuff or studying. I wanted to make one of the least supported masteries work, and this sword turned out to be quite a build enabler. I had no previous experience with Necromancer mastery and dual-wielding mechanics, so it took a lot of trial and error kind of testing to make this build balanced, efficient and fun to play at the same time.
(skip this too if you want to go straight to grimtools link and gear/skills/devotions explanation)
This a pure melee build with almost no DoT support. And both masteries are very good support masteries for pure melee classes, but combining them together does not make a very good melee character on paper, skill trees don’t offer passive damage absorption, crowd control effects resistance, dodge/melee/armor/armor absorption or any decent amount of resists. We have couple of cooldown based shield skills and that’s about it. So we have to heavily rely on gear/devotions to make it work. Plus we have to take the best of what both masteries offer in terms of offense and crowd control.
What makes this build different is huge Vitality to Fire conversion enabled by dual-wielding Blazeheart Swords. It converts a lot of vitality damage from Necromancer skills to fire, as well as some devotion procs.
(weapon switch is for Crucible or for Mad Queen/Lokkar in campaign)
[COLOR=“DarkOrange”]Alternative Grimtools, all offensive setup[/COLOR] (not tested, use at your own risk)
Every piece of gear is there for a reason. Swords have been already explained. Justicar Guardset, despite being designed for a different mastery combo thus lacking +skills that we could use, is a great and really the only option for a fire-based melee character, it offers a lot of armor, flat damage, health and resists (including physical resist) and a nice proc. Korvaak’s Deception relic gives us wonderful mobility/little nuke skill plus best stats among all relics. Chausses of Barbaros are just too good for any melee character to pass on them. Alternative option would be well rolled double rare pair of Solael Pants, but good luck finding that. Rings of Ice and Fire are excellent stat wise and proc is decent, alternative would be Elemental Harmony set for more flat damage, but it lacks total speed which we need in order to cap our walking speed and critical damage, which is a huge damage boost for this build because of how much OA we will be packing. Boots are actually not that big of a deal, we really need “Thunderstruck Stoneplate Greaves”, if you craft ones with good affix, good for you, if not, oh well, just craft couple of pieces of your gear at Steelcap District and roll little extra stun resist.
Notice how 5 of our gear pieces are craftable. This makes this build pretty affordable and gives us awesome option to get a lot of %armor from Angrim or %stun res from Steelcap smith in case we don’t have Thunderstruck of Kings/Featherstep affix.
Skills and Devotions
Our main damage comes from transmuted Fire Strike with 3 WPS skills. We support it with Flame Torrent devotion that has no cooldown and multiple monster debuffs. We are softcapping Fire Strike/Explosive Strike, taking Brimstone to 16-12 (for extra fragment), overcapping Reaping Strike for more ADCtH. Bone Harvest’s Soul Harvest modifier offers us a decent amount of flat fire damage (due to conversion on both swords, plus it’s an excellent skill to proc Eldritch Fire). Devotion wise we have a lot of passive devotions procs that are going to trigger when we are hit, this makes this build excellent in crowded brawls like Blackiron Docks in Malmouth or late waves of Crucible. Ulcama’s Scales should convert its to damage to fire, plus it gives a very decent heal/energy leech. Empyrion is there for its very strong nods, but skill itself is not too bad, but it needs to be buffed a bit for sure. Turtle devotion is pretty weak, but got decent nods, plus it fits nicely into our devotion route puzzle.
Leveling and attribute points allocation
Leveling with Necromancer is super easy. You can max Spectral Wrath/Ravenous Earth and pretty much run thru maps while everyone dies till level 70.
Put all attribute points into physique, put just enough points into cunning so that you can pick up the sword.
Bone Harvests increases our flat fire damage, and Battle Cry/Justice proc greatly increase our attacking speed.
Torment of a new Crucible
Initially I had the ambition to make it waves 150-170 Gladiator compatible, but Crucible after wave 150 is just impossible for non-soldier/non-shield melee builds, especially without any circuit breakers or 0 cooldown reduction. I am still trying to make it work, but so far it beats Gladiator till 150 with ease with buffs and can even beat it without buffs with some skill and focus. But after that there is just too much, even with those defensive stats and procs.
Overall it’s a very fun build to play. It’s a true melee build, but with a lot of fireworks. It’s fast, has a mobility skill and it can kill everything in Main Campaign except Ravager, plus it can farm Crucible Gladiator till wave 150 quite comfortably. I hope Crate sees this and adds some more support for Defiler in future patches.