[] Let's Get Physical, Physical: 4:40m Crucible Gladiator 150-170, SR 90, Celestials Octavius caster Tactician [sr+][cr+][vid] (+bonus builds: Warlord and Paladin all content destroyers)

*When the nerfed Octavius meta makes a glorious and unexpected return
**Credit for the picture goes to @Tararihen


Octavius Soldier has gotten nerfed quite a bit since Forgotten Gods came out. And Tactician went from being one of the best cookie cutter classes in Ashes of Malmouth to a class rightfully considered to be one of the worst. So making a relatively fast Crucible farmer and a tanky deep SR crawler out of it seemed like an impossible task at first. Well, only at first.*

*This is the old description I decided to keep just for history. Tactician is doing all right currently

The Build

<<<< GRIMTOOLS >>>>*

*Craft for Slow Resist

Scroll down for Warlord and Paladin builds

Internally traumatic questions

No Forcewave? No Trauma focus in devotions? No Doom relic?
Well after some thorough testing I figured out that cooldown Forcewave is not worth it and all of that trauma-shawarma loses to the magic of converted Physical damage (that bypasses armor) and it’s not even close. Focusing on OA and decent casting speed turned out to be the recepie for success.

But Reign of Ice and Fire is not a Physical ring…
Yep, and it’s best-in-slot here. Points to Artifact Handling that are hard to come by + a proc that is a converted physical damage that goes thru armor (and heals)

No War Cry? And you call it a tank?
It is a true tank. And there are no points for War Cry, instead - Empyrion’s proc serves as damage reduction mechanism


Core of the build is Octavius set and wonderful Physical damage dagger - Decree of the Circle of Five (nouns in the row). Everything else is pretty standard and in-line with latest physical meta. The only trauma that Internal Trauma devotions and skills are inflicting is a moral one, so I skipped them and build became much faster and more fluent.

For leveling guides, check this forums. This is an endgame build and works as advertised once you equip all the items/skills/devotions at character level 100


In Crucible everything is facetankable but be careful on wave 169 around Anasteria. You don’t lose damage by kiting as long as you are making enemies step on your runes.
In Shattered Realm build I pushed the build as far as SR 90 (maybe 100? Too lazy to check).


General (before Deadly Aim)




Videos: SR 75-76 7:50 run Ravager 1:55 facetank kill

Crucible Gladiator 150-170 5:02 run by Plasmodermic

Crucible Gladiator 150-170 5:34 run

Crucible Gladiator 150-170 5:35 run

Shards 75-76 (9:40 run)

Shard 85 (couple of deaths)

Supertolik’s Naked Crucible Gladiator 150-170 run

In Conclusion

Thanks to @Tararihen for his help with providing a picture for the guide and to @supertolik to kindly agreeing to test this build and record a video.



*Build is inspired by the Octavius SR75-76 speedrunning meta, created by Chinese community. This build is a tribute to the countless Octavius specs they made and also to @banana_peel who did snb melees out of Octavius builds before it was cool

<<<< GRIMTOOLS >>>>*

*Craft one item for Slow Resist and Freeze resist
*You absolutely have to get Tyrant’s prefix on weapon and Vampiric on one of the rings.

Sometimes Grim Dawn works in mysterious ways. And this Warlord is a good example of this. Equipping just three pieces of this caster set and making build into a pure melee with a lot of dot damage yields much better results than playing Octavius Warlord “as intended”.

Build is just a tanky speed demon: it clears farmable content like SR 75-76 and buffed Crucible Gladiator 150-170 very fast and at the same time it can facetank Ravager without pharma and Callagadra (with pharma) and clear SR90. Anguish’s belt proc is negated by high physical resist and sufficient elemental overcaps.

Here are some videos with the examples of build’s performance:

Crucible Gladiator 150-170 4:09 run
Ravager 1:24 kill (no pharma/no cluster)
Callagadra 1:32 kill (~60% success rate)
SR 75-76 4:10 run (fixed map layout)



*Build is one of my favourite Octavius specs ever. You can probably make a spec that is more damaging but this one is balanced pretty well in my opinion

<<<< GRIMTOOLS >>>>*

*Craft or Slow Resist and Freeze resist
**Single-rare Ugdenbog Repeater will do. Of Fury suffix is something that you want to prioritize tho

My take on Octavius Paladin. Extremely durable, almost immortal if played right. You don’t have to stand still to do damage (but you can, build facetanks almost anything), on the contrary zip-zapping around with Vire and Amatok to damage for maximum dot-damage coverage is preferred.
Build could’ve made it into top20 but because I presented it for testing a bit too late only banana_peel managed to test it (besides me) and it didn’t get enough votes unfortunately.
Here is what it can do:

Octavius Paladin vs. Shard 90 (5:57 run, no deaths + tough bosses)
Octavius Paladin vs. Shard 100 full run (few deaths)
Octavius Paladin vs Ravager 1:47 kill
Octavius Paladin vs. Callagadra (3:09 kill)
Octavius Paladin vs. Crate (1:04 kill)


The picture made my day


Great build!

Some unorthodox gear/devotion choices no doubt leading to that. Forcewave on CD and even spam is weak and Tactician is below average class so you need to come with a plan to salvage old Octavius Tactician, kudos. Bonus points for the entry pic. But deduction of one point for Olivia Newton-John??? So 9/10 :wink:


I might be wrong, wouldn’t Paladin be better for the phys% reduction of guardians?

Am I missing something here or is there no source of flat RR aside from scales? I’m on team break morale here (1 pt warcry only) but that’s probably too much piano.

Yeah dots always lose to straight damage unless that straight damage sucks.

Flat RR doesn’t stack so I’m not sure why you’re asking.

Scales RR is single target so unless it’s a pure cruci build it’s never a bad idea to incorporate an aoe source especially for casters that have easy access to it. Lee probably tested it and it went worse tho.

I see. Interesting point.

It might be it might be not. Soldier offers a lot of %raw damage plus qol which might outweigh RR from Oathkeeper. Either way, I wanted to make something good out of Octavius Tactician and so far it looks like the best Octavius build currently. Maybe someone will make a better Paladin, everything’s possible.

No points for War Cry and no need for Flat RR from Break Morale. In Crucilbe Scales + Banners work just fine and and SR as you can see everything evaporates be it crowds or single targets.

I have not tested War Cry because I did not have (like absolutely didn’t) any points for it since I went for Gladiator’s belt and Deathstalker relic and also I wanted to streamline this build as much as possible because it’s already a piano.

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Hi, i like ypur build. May i know if i can level with your build? Can i use self found gears cos i don’t use gd stash…

Good luck finding a melee beginner’s Tactician though. Probably best to go this way

and then respec into this one when you hit 94 and have all the gear needed.

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this is off-topic but it can’t be any further from truth for now :sweat_smile:

I actually haven’t tried it since Tremor changes but I remember your complaints about Commando being weak. I will update my Warlord soon, looks good on paper, we’ll see. Lightning Warder is decent build but not exceptional. Arcanor tri-elemental or Cold with Conduit looks interesting, I have few ideas but Idk. Forcewave isn’t top tier skill. But I have to say version on CD is worse than spam.

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FW Commando is a strong sub-6 minute build now :stuck_out_tongue:
So I’m finally proud of it again.

I’ll try phys FW soon too, probably


I think leveling with just soldier class is the most difficult in grim dawn…all the skills just can’t do much dmg…even spammimg forcewave is weak… Cadence and blade arc is not doing good either…

Im just now building a fire spam FW commando for the first time and im having a lot of fun with it, its disintegrating shit (but then again im only in Elite). So far its really strong but ive noticed its not a great single target damage skill.

Almost a sub 5 run


Completely forgot to add this amazing run. Pretty sick for a physical Tactician tank.

I’ve really been enjoying this build, very durable and rune playstyle is super fun IMO.
Any changes changes for

I think Aura of Conviction with or without Grasp of Unchained Might are worth exploring now.

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