Theory Crafting: Piercing Trickster, how does this look to you?

Hi folks,

Spent some time setting up a pierce oriented Trickster (could call him a Pierceter :rolleyes:). I was always looking out for a build focused around mythical Brutallax, because i find it to be an out of the box kinda weapon. I am familiar with Tz Tz’s Belgothian Trickster, which was an interesting idea back then. So, inspired by Veretragna’s use of the Rimetongue set for his Impaler Blademster, i tried to sketch out this build. It’s a purely theoretical exercise, as i lack parts of the set, so if anyone is interested in further polishing this idea or even putting it to the test, they’re more than welcome to do so. As far as I know, no one else posted something very similar on the forum. If that is the case, sorry for the blunder…

Here are the two setups I have in mind: - a more offensive devotion setup, leaning towards flat damage. - a setup focused in covering all possible gaps in relevant resistances

The items used for both versions are the same, avoided MI’s in trying to make the build as balanced as possible in a realistic way. Obviously, a decently rolled pair of Stoneplate Greaves would solve many of the issues I had in trying to balance this build. Other than the choice in Devotions, the two versions are set apart by just some minor adjustments with components and augments.

Most items used are self explanatory: can’t leave home without the trusted Brutallax, full Rimetongue set in order to benefit from both sources of RR that it provides, Chausses of Barbaros and Grasp of Unchained Might - usually BiS in their respective slots, Direwolf crest, Blade Breaker sash, Belgo and Blackwatch rings, all pretty standard stuff.

Took Stormtitan Treads for stun/ele resist (bit low on fire), EotS Relic for +1 to shaman and because, at least on paper, it seems to provide the best damage. Though Doom may be a better choice, as AoE isn’t stellar. I chose Belgothian’s Slicer mostly for the % armor piercing. Not gonna lie, it really adds a lot to the build, but a decently rolled Dermapteran Slicer could fit in there just as well.

There are still some negligible traces of physical damage as I didn’t manage to convert all of it into piercing. Phys resist isn’t great either, between 16 and 19%, depending on version. Chose Seal of Ancestry/Tainted Heart on amulet over Seal of Annihilation to cover vit resist. Looks decent on paper. Not nearly the slaughtering machine as some other DW builds out there, but it may be a fun and, to some extent, effective concept.

I guess that about covers it. Hope this idea piques your interest. I’ll certainly give it a try when i gather all needed items. Until then, I hope to hear some opinions about it. All criticism is welcomed, of course. I’m curious about optimizing point allocation, and whether there may be some more effective Devotion setups. The choice of items is obviously up for debate too. And of course, if anyone is willing to take this baby out for a spin, i would be curious to know how it actually performs.

Lastly, sorry for the long and probably sloppy presentation. It’s my first time :stuck_out_tongue:

Oh, and a shout-out to all the builders and butchers on the forum, for keeping me up at night with your wacky ideas. Did anyone tell you this theory crafting stuff is no cakewalk?

Some suggestions:

  • Why no Amarasta´s Quick Cut? Would change it with Blade Trap.
  • Why no Living Shadow (Oleron)? Get it!
  • Modrogen´s Pact only 1 Point
  • 26 Points to Savagery


  • Blade trap is necessary as a RR debuffer, so it’s vital to the build. I chose to leave AQC out of the picture as i had more points into Whirling Death and i wasn’t aiming for bleed damage
  • The Devotion path i chose is with survivability in mind: Watcher, points in Ishtak for slow res/total speed. It’s not a novelty, i’ve had my inspiration from other builds from more experienced guys such as Veretragna and Mad_Lee. But sure, a point in Living Shadow is not a problem to get. As for going for Oleron, that’s an option too, but i’m not certain if that would affect survivability or not
  • Points in Modrogen for phys to pierce conversion. Again, not sure how effective that is…
  • Sadly, the build lacks necessary bonuses to hardcap Savagery, it’s a bit restricted by gear :undecided:

Ah, some misunderstandings (my fault):

  • Blade Trap: Okay, didn´t see the item modifier
  • Confused Unknown Soldier with Oleron…
  • AQC will give you another WPS with flat pierce and +Crit (Bleeding is nice on top)
  • I still would only put 1 point in Modrogen´s Pact. Then you have enough points to get Savagery to 26 (lower Heart of the Wild to 10/10)

I think there’s also a misunderstanding on my part regarding point distribution. The reason why i didn’t take AQC and why Savagery is only capped at 20 is that there aren’t enough +points to skills on the items equipped. The build has + 2 points to shaman and +2 to nightblade. The most bonus points support blade trap, and all other WP skills but AQC. And as the build is kind of starved for points, i didn’t want to take from elsewhere to get AQC.

As for hardcapping Savagery… I have tried a couple of item combinations before settling for the items used in the build. I can go as far as 24/26 Savagery if i were to equip Myth Reforged Chains of Oleron and Bladetwister ring. 26/26 with 2 Bladetwisters. But i preferred this combination of rings because they complemented my lacking resists. And took Blade Breaker instead of Chains for the same reason, it helped fill the gaps the build seemed to have. As i stated in the description, this build would be much easyer to put together with just a good roll on a pair of Stoneplate boots. Not double rare or anything, just the resists the build lacks, and maybe-maybe some OA/DA. Then maybe it’s worth taking 2 Bladetwisters.

My intention was to come up with a viable, well rounded build that is not dependent on a perfectly rolled MI but would be helped by one. And i don’t think that would be a game breaker. So that’s why i invited people that may show interest to try the build out, either with the listed gear, or whatever boots/rings/belt/pants/slicer they feel like equipping.

It might work to a certain extent but won’t be viable as top content farmer. Tricksters need to deliver huge damage in order to survive, this one is going to do very little damage I am afraid.

I was suspecting that. Can’t deny there was some wishful thinking in the process, but i didn’t realistically expect for this to be a top content clearer. Would have been nice if this concept would have been further enhanced by more than just a damage conversion and pierce RR potential of Rimetongue. Will still take it for a spin when the time comes. And who knows what time and devs have installed for us. That’s equally annoying and attractive about Grim Dawn, the evershifting nature of things. Today’s king may be tomorrow’s beggar and vice versa.
Thanks for the input, I appreciate it :slight_smile:

rimetongue is not the set you want to use for pierce damage trickster.
edit: This is a slightly better setup, avoiding using really rare MIs

Thanks for the tip. Part Belgo set and Ravager’s Dreadgaze. Oh well, i quess i’ll have to make a build dedicated to beating the dude that drops the helm that i have to use in this build :eek:

run clair then. It’s just +1 all skills.
Edit; either way piercing trickster is subpar.

Yeah so I’ve been told. Oh well. I was hoping that the 2 sources of RR from the Rimetongue set to help a bit with damage. Who knows, maybe this concept will be more feasible come FG expansion.