The upcoming launch of Path of Exile 3.7 and the Legion patch has a lot of fans buzzing. With the impending complete rework of combat and melee class archetypes, the game is about to get a huge shakeup. One area that many players are keen on learning about is the Ascendancy rework. Ascendancy Trees are a special set of rewards from the Labyrinth that completely alter the playstyle of a build. The current thinking is that these aspects are crucial to achieving a well-balanced and fun build.
GGG often introduces changes to these Trees in each patch, although they’re often not as major as the ones teased so far. So let’s dig in and see what POE players are freaking out over. Credit goes to u/JYshadow on the POE subreddit for these amazing overview images.
So let’s go over the simplest change first, the Gladiator. The new Challenger Charges node is interesting, but according to GGG it’s just going to grant the Attack Speed and Movement speed when paired with the new Blood and Sand stances. It’s a nice change that helps flesh out the new Blood/Sand build archetype, not sure how much it will shift the meta-game for these builds though.
Next up is the first of the big changes, the Berserker. This class has almost completely changed in both style and substance. The reworks to Rage and the shifting of focus from raw Physical Damage to Crit buffs is intriguing. It means that meta for this build is about to shift hard, and due to the way damage applications scales from Crit, there’s potential to gain much more DPS from Crit than with just flat damage increases. You can of course go pure Blitz to just deal more raw damage by cancelling out Crit gains for speed. However this potential loss in DPS could be offset by also stacking Power Charges. The pure Attack Speed works out to 40% more, which is insane.
Rage means that there’s potential for even more DPS too, combing that aspect with the buff to Rite of Ruin makes that node very appealing indeed.
Next up is the Champion, an Ascendancy that saw a lot less use in general builds. More of a classic tank archetype, it often saw use as either a simple build setup to tack specialized mechanics like Impale onto, or it was often used for very simple builds that used skills like Reave or Double Strike to great effect.
The changes are actually pretty slight, and are mostly buffs, although I can’t imaging the meta-game for this build archetype getting too huge of a shakeup in POE 3.7 based on the Ascendancy alterations alone.
Then there’s the Ascendancy that pretty much every melee player depended on until 3.6, Slayer. This is probably one of the harder setups to understand due to the way Leeching often works in POE. And with the new combat mechanics making defensive layers even more important, understanding this complex web is vital.
There’s a handful of nerfs to previous AoE nodes, which is to be expected with the changing of skills like Cyclone to Channeling skills with radiating AoE. A handful of other slight nerfs to Onslaught nodes and damage scaling with two-handed weapons make certain build archetypes weaker by making other types stronger, I’ll be very interested to see what this does for build variety. Nodes like Impact could make up for some of the lost DPS, but there’s room for debate on what nodes to take, which is great. Crit-based builds are also looking really strong in 3.7 with these changes.
Keep in mind also that the Leech changes don’t affect the cap on overall Leech rate, which means the total amount leeched is effectively unchanged, so not as big a nerf as you think. Depending on how the math breaks down with other changes, it could turn out to be a slight buff.
Now let’s wrap things up with the Chieftan. Most of the changes here involve shuffling node placement and changing minor values. These minor moves actually change a lot of the defensive setups for this archetype. The rework to Ramako highlights this pretty clearly. GGG obviously wanted to break up the monopoly certain Totem builds with heavy defenses had over this Ascendancy. The rework to Tukohama also makes it harder to get such easy defenses and DPS buffs for Totems in 3.7.
The heavy focus on Fire Damage in multiple nodes means that the focus for Chieftain builds is about to get even more pinpointed, at least in theory. We’ll have to wait for the patch notes and full skill tree info to see how Totems fair for sure in Legion. We could see some really interesting and creative builds this league.
Also, if you want to start theorycrafting new builds for Legion League and POE 3.7, we’ve got a helpful list of builds that look like they’ll be much stronger, or just plain fun to play, in the 3.7 patch. Go check them out over here.