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Best Starter Builds for Path of Exile: Delirium

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As you many of you likely already know, the latest Path of Exile league went live yesterday, alongside the release of Diablo 3's Season 20. We've put together a list of the best starters from our sister site, PoE Vault!

As many of you probably already know, Icy Veins has a sister site, PoE Vault, that specifically caters to Path of Exile. The release of the latest league for PoE coincided perfectly with the new Diablo season and, given our post outlining the updates to our guides for Diablo, we felt it was only fair to put together a list of the best starters for the Path of Exile fans among you.

Witch

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Elementalist

  • The Storm Brand Elementalist has solid clear speed, strong output on most bosses, has awesome defences, and is quite mobile; however, it must rely on traps for additional single-target damage.
  • The Triple Herald Elementalist has great clear speed, formidable defenses, powerful life leech, is immune to physical reflect, and has good single-target damage output. Unfortunately, some map mods are not efficient, and you’ll have to keep an eye out for mechanics, due to this being a melee build.

Occultist

  • The Herald of Agony/Rain of Arrows Occultist has absurd defenses, is viable in all Leagues, can do all map mods without any effort, and has a ranged playstyle. Unfortunately, proximity shields are difficult to deal with and can put you in awkward situations. You’ll also be relying on AI for your minion and the playstyle might feel a tad clunky due to this.
  • The Herald of Agony/Ball Lightning specializes heavily in applying strong curses via curse-on-hit setups, has great sustain, and easily obtains a huge energy shield pool. As before, you’ll be relying on AI for your minion, which isn’t always all that smart, and the playstyle might feel a tad clunky.
  • Cold skills got greatly buffed during 3.5, and the Occultist Ascendancy has great synergy with all of them. The Vortex/Cold Snap Occultist is quite versatile, but bear in mind it can be quite pricey, and damage-over-time setups are not for everyone.
  • The Essence Drain & Contagion Occultist build offers great balance between clear speed, single-target damage, and defense, but you’ll have to get used to using two skills instead of one.

Necromancer

  • The Raise Spectre Necromancer build offers a very easy playstyle, but is not a good idea for SSF and the minion AI can be somewhat silly.

Ranger

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Deadeye

  • The Tornado Shot Deadeye is one of the best builds when it comes to clear speed, but keep in mind that it is poorly suited for high-tier mapping and boss killing. While typically focused on Magic Find, our build includes options for more general usability as well, as would be the case during the Flashback event.

Pathfinder

  • The Kinetic Blast/Barrage Pathfinder is also an insanely fast clearer, has extremely strong defenses (95%+ chance to avoid attacks without flasks active), is very nimble on its feet, and most importantly, is very, very, very fun to play. While better than the Tornado Shot Deadeye at single-target and boss fights, the build still struggles without proper gear (such as Queen of the Forest) and links, and can sometimes feel too fast.

Raider

  • The Spectral Throw Raider is very high-tempo and engaging (which is both a blessing and curse). You also get great mobility, awesome clear speed and the confidence which comes with feeling powerful in virtually any environment. Do note that this is the only build in this list which we do not recommend for Hardcore play.

Scion - Ascendant

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  • The Ancestral Warchief Ascendant has very good single-target potential, it feels, and is, quite safe to play, and you won’t ever have to worry about damage reflect. The clear speed isn’t that great however, and totem builds don’t appeal to everyone.

Duelist

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Slayer

  • The Cyclone Slayer is a well balanced build, is very fun to play, combining the allure of high single-target with decent clear speed and sustain for a good ol’ beefy melee brute. The downside of this build is that it’s necessary to deal damage in order to survive, due to having practically no health regeneration. The leveling experience is smooth, however, and you’ll have no issue in dealing with most types of content.

Gladiator

  • The Double Strike Gladiator can definitely be used in hardcore, but keep in mind that your main focus will be on gaining a larger health pool in order to prevent one-shots.

Champion

  • Champion is the king of Imaples, a very powerful mechanic that allows you to stack tons of extra Physical damage on enemies. The Imaple Cyclone Champion makes a great use of this mechanic at the cost of little to no investment.

Marauder

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Chieftain

  • The Holy Flame Totem Chieftain is perfect for an SSF environment due to its lax equipment requirements. The build feels quite safe to play, has a great life pool and decent life sustain mechanics. The build’s clear speed isn’t all that good, but you’ll find that bosses are no problem at all.

Juggernaught

  • The Molten Strike Juggernaut can become stunningly powerful if properly equipped. This build can get quite pricey, but with the right luck, you can achieve more than 90% physical and 80% elemental damage mitigation.
  • Specifically created for running Labyrinths fast and efficient without a shred of danger for your life, the Uber Labyrinth Farmer Juggernaut is an extremely tanky build. Albeit not that good at handling late-game content, we do believe it’ll help you rise to the tops of the Flashback Juggernaut ranks.

Shadow

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Saboteur

  • The Arc Mines Saboteur is a jack of all trades. The build has remained a powerhouse despite recent nerfs and is arguably the most dominant of all  Arc variants, and is a great choice for both Standard and SSF leagues. The Arc Mines Saboteur offers a wide variety of modifications, is a very fast clearer and can deal some heavy amounts of damage with very little investment; movement speed is also pretty crazy on this one.

Trickster

  • The Caustic Arrow Trickster does not require a specific set of uniques and a simple Silverbough will do you well until you manage to get your hands on some more currency.  Kaom's Heart and Devoto's Devotion will give you a very nice boost in survivability and clear speed. Damage-over-time builds are an acquired taste though, so choose wisely.
  • The Divine Ire Trickster makes good use of the brand new Divine Ire gem. Overall, this is a well balanced build which is great at killing monsters off-screen. You will have to stay still in order to channel your skill and deal damage, however, which can put you in some tight situations.
  • The Kitava’s Thirst Flame Surge Trickster is very high-tempo and does a great job at making your enemies explode into hundreds of pretty lights. The  Flame Surge skill is carefully woven around  Kitava's Thirst in order to create very strong single-target damage with potent energy shield restoration mechanics. The randomness of effects might affect your gameplay a tad though, and all the lights could be off-putting to some.
  • The Soulrend Trickster is a good Chaos-based option for pretty much any league (SSF, Hardcore and Softcore). What’s essential about this build is that it is created with survival and comfort in mind, all while maintaining a very high rate of experience per hour. You can reach Level 100 safely and on a very tight budget, which is perfect for the Flashback event.
  • Storm Burst is another great channeling skill which earned more love during 3.6. The Storm Burst Trickster offers nice single-target damage and great range, but doesn’t do that well in elemental reflect areas and the best equipment can become quite pricey.
  • Another build that is expected to be extremely powerful is Furty’s ED/Contagion Trickster, which allowed him to be the 5th player hitting level 100 in a SSFSC environment. The build is very versatile, easy to gear and strikes a great balance between offense and defense.

Templar

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Hierophant

  • Another decent totem build would be the Frostbolt/Glacial Cascade Totems Hierophant.  Being totem-based, this build feels nice and safe to play, and you’ll have quite a bit of mobility. Depending on the type of content, though, you might need to swap gems here and there.

Inquisitor

  • The Purifying Flame Inquisitor has lots of life regeneration, decent defences, very high damage at a low cost, and is incredibly easy to play, albeit a little slow at clearing.

Guardian

If you've never played Path of Exile before, this might be the perfect time for you to jump in and give it a go! If you're more of a Diablo fan, you can check out our full set of updated guides for Season 20.

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I have a very basic question as a newbie. I expect to be crusifide by all veterans for it but anyway. I have seen many build guides and tried to follow them. But my basic problem is where to get the Unique gear - non guide mention this. I guess the gems are not the problem but the gear is. Am I able to level up (in line with the guide) with the gems and the best gear that I pick up at the moment? Or is my only chance to wait for drop or try the auctions? Thank you in advance.

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4 hours ago, vochomurka said:

I have a very basic question as a newbie. I expect to be crusifide by all veterans for it but anyway. I have seen many build guides and tried to follow them. But my basic problem is where to get the Unique gear - non guide mention this. I guess the gems are not the problem but the gear is. Am I able to level up (in line with the guide) with the gems and the best gear that I pick up at the moment? Or is my only chance to wait for drop or try the auctions? Thank you in advance.

There are two ways of getting gear: finding it or buying it from other players using currency you've found (or obtained by selling other useful things you do find). Generally, the go-to method is buying it from others, since your chances of finding the gear you want by simply having it drop are astronomically low.

All of that won't impact your leveling process, all the way to the end-game and doing maps, though. That part you can complete relatively easily with just the random (bad) items you find as you kill monsters leveling up. Once you get to towards the end of the campaign (so about level 60 or so) you can also look to buy a few bargain pieces to fill out your set-up.

Feel free to join us on the PoE Vault discord if you want to have a more detailed talk about all this.

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