This Path of Exile build is both highly flexible and cheap, allowing it to function as a decent League starter, and a viable end-game DPS setup. Although the ES-based defensive setup combined with the Mind Over Matter passive can sometimes be tedious or annoying to new players, it’s not too complex as to be impenetrable. Once you get used to keeping your defensive layers running, this build is buttery smooth in clear speed and against most bosses.
Just keep moving and dropping traps and you’ll be fine.
And in case you do get hit, we run the combination of the Tinkerskin unique with Mind Over Matter and Eldritch Battery, all of the incoming DPS that manages to bypass Block/Evade will be pulled from ES rather than Life.
This build can be extremely cheap with the right gear as well. And with the new Rare staffs that can be gained in Incursion League, you don’t necessarily even need the most expensive items to make the build work. The build can also scale really easily to end-game due to the lack of necessity for a 6-link.
- Excellent AoE damage
- Fairly tanky for a trap build
- Very cheap gear
- Clear speed isn’t as good as hyper-fast melee builds
- Needing to manage Energy Shield can be difficult at times
- Killing bosses with sub-optimal gear can be difficult on the tougher maps
Major God: Brine King
Minor God: Any
Kill All for the bonus Passives in most cases, Alira if you want that extra help, but it’s really not necessary.
Ascendancy skill points
Order: Pyromaniac -> Born in the Shadows -> Explosives Expert -> Perfect Crime
Flamethrower Trap deals x% increased Damage
Flamethrower Trap has 2 additional Flames
16% increased Attack and Cast Speed if you’ve Killed Recently
0.6% of Damage Leeched as Life and Mana if you’ve Killed Recently
Adds 45 to 68 Cold Damage if you’ve been Hit Recently
Decree/Commandment Enchants that buff elemental damage, like Flames or Spite
Leveling Items and General Tips
Start with Explosive, go for Fire trap at level 12 and Flamethrower + Lightning Spire at level 28. Put them in the 4-links and this will carry you until you can get to end-game.
Use herald + anger until you get Tinkerskin. Then throw on Arctic Armour too and spec into EB and MoM (3 skill points).
Lvl 20 tree: http://poeurl.com/bYBm
Lvl 40 tree: http://poeurl.com/bYBl
Lvl 68 tree (tinkerskin switch): http://poeurl.com/bYBk
Lvl 85 tree: http://poeurl.com/bYBj
Lvl 100 tree: http://poeurl.com/bYBi
Tabula Rasa – Always run this when possible to buff Damage/Sustain with Elemental Attack or Leech Gems.
Blackheart – Two of these give great buffs to DPS in early leveling.
Fencoil – May make early levels smoother with increased damage.
Avoid these map mods:
- Temporal Chains
- No Leech/Regen
If you are a brand new Path of Exile player, feel free to check out our various POE guides for noobs.
Final Skill Gem Setup
You’ll find recommendations for different attack skill setups for this build below. The basic buff and aura setups are down there too.
=== FIRE TRAP ===
Cluster Traps – Fire Trap – Trap and Mine Damage – Combustion
Put this in Martyr of Innocence if you have it to trigger as a defensive clear against mob packs.
=== MOVEMENT/UTILITY ===
Lightning Warp – Ice Golem – Less Duration – Faster Attacks
=== UTILITY DPS===
Lightning Spire Trap – Flamethrower Trap – Trap and Mine Damage – Increased Criticals
=== AURA ===
Anger – Herald of Ash – Lightning Trap – Arctic Armour
=== CWDT ===
Cast when Damage Taken (LVL 1) – Immortal Call (LVL 3)- Increased Duration – Siphoning Trap
Build Uniques / Example Rare Gear
In this section you will find all the suggested items for this build. We always try to include optional gear in our listing, or try your own assuming you get similar stat rolls. Aim for high-quality Rares if you’re replacing Uniques. The Minimum/Optional requirements listed assume you’re using Rares as a replacement for listed Uniques (where possible).
Depending on your gear choices, you can go for either a lot more DPS at the expense of Life, or go for more defensiveness by sacrificing a portion of DPS. This is your choice.
Life and Energy Shield are super important for survivability, especially at end-game. Although be careful to to forsake too many damage mods for it or you won’t be able to kill mobs quick enough for your defenses to handle incoming DPS. Life Regen does a lot to help keep you alive as well.
Elemental Damage is your main scaling and your primary DPS with Poison, Added Elemental with a focus on Lightning as that’s where most of your Poison-converted damage is.
Block Chance and Evasion Buffs are great to help reduce incoming DPS.
Resistances until you cap them off.
Attributes for high-level gems in end-game.
Martyr of Innocence as a staff is super great for this build. Although since it’s gone up in price, you can use an Incursion Staff with a high Block roll and multiple Fire Damage buffs as a replacement. Go for a Rare with both Adds X Fire Damage and x% Increased Fire Damage if you want the best QoL.
If you’re not running MoI, just run around dropping Fire Traps all day.
A Rare helm is usually best in this slot. You’ll need some Life and Resistance in this slot to help survive.
Tinkerskin is the basis for this build, and a must to keep both your ES and other defensive setups going.
Eldritch Battery lets us spend Energy Shield instead of Mana. Tinkerskin makes every single trap that gets triggered give back 50 energy shield. One trap throw costs 35 mana. So one throw of fire trap (which throws 4 with cluster traps) gives back 200 ES more than covering the cost of the skill. This lets us reserve 100% of our mana using auras without worry.
Abyss Belts with Life and Resistances are a good option for end-game. Other Rares might do in a pinch, but not having good rolls can make you a lot more squishy than is tolerable. Abyss Jewels are also a great source for damage buffs as well. Buffing your damage and Life is the best bet here with Jewels.
There is also the potential of Trap and Mine Damage Mastercrafts that can help your DPS here.
90 maximum Life
Added Elemental Damage
Trap/Mine Damage Mods
Life/ES Rare gloves are BIS. Since you need some ES as well to keep your traps flying, get the best rolls you can on this slot.
50 maximum Life
Increased Energy Shield
Added Damage to Attacks
Any Uncapped Resistances
Rare boots are always a preferred choice in this slot. You may need some help with resistances, so Two-Toned boots can be good here for example.
60 maximum Life
30% increased Movement Speed
Any Uncapped Resistances
A Rare with the right high rolls is the best here when going for DPS/survivability. This is also a great slot for some Attributes. Getting a Jade base with both +Dexterity and +All Attributes is great for covering the needed Dex and Int.
80 Maximum Life
Critical Strike Chance/Multi
Rare Shaped Opal Rings are great for this build and it’s Elemental Damage.
Emberwake or Ngamahu’s Sign can be used in a pinch until you can get the Opal Rings. Although you’ll need either specific Divination Cards or farming the right Zana mod to get these with any reliability.
50 Maximum Life
Elemental Damage Buffs
You can swap the mods around if needed due to RNG.
Transcendant Mind is great for keeping your ES up, because taking enough hits that drain ES will make it impossible to lay traps.
Added Physical/Fire Damage to Attacks
Increased Attack Speed if you have Crit recently