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[3.0]Righteous Fire Totem Starter build - Odealo's Crafty Guide

[3.0]Righteous Fire Totem Starter build - Odealo's Crafty Guide

Righteous Fire Totem Chieftain/Berserker is one of the best League starter builds. Amazing damage, high Life pool, with no item requirements

Righteous Fire Totem
Chieftain Starter Build
Updated for Patch 3.2

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Estimated budget: moderately low (few Exalted Orbs)
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Righteous Fire Totem is yet another example of an extremely powerful Starter build. It has basically 0 item requirements, yet provides amazing damage and very good defenses - high Life pool and Life regeneration. As of Patch 3.2 Berserker is no longer recommended for this build, because the Leech from Berserker Ascendancy only applies to Attack damage. It can be played on Chieftain or Hierophant

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1. Gameplay

Righteous Fire is a spell that applies a debuff to the caster that rapidly burns anyone in radius(including the caster). The Righteous Fire's self damage is compensated by the amount of damage dealt to enemies. Use of the Spell Totem support gem, makes the Totem receive the RF's degeneration damage with none of it inflicted to the player's character. RF overall damage is just slightly lowered, making it a very powerful combination. Compared to the regular RF builds, it might lack a little bit of mobility and damage, however it is a much more suitable build to start a new League. Also it is very important to cast Orb of Storm which applies your Curse, hits enemies with Lightning Damage reducing their resistances to other types of damage (including Fire) and also procs the Elemental Overload passive bonus from occassional crits (even though your skill deal no damage, they can still hit and crit  and apply all the on-hit effects)

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2. Build's PROS & CONS

  • very high dps regardless your equipped items
  • budget friendly 
  • very easy to level up
  • immunity to elemental and physical reflect
  • insane Life Pool and Regeneration
  • lack a little bit mobility and clear speed
  • "stationary" damage causes encounters with fast/fleeing enemies to be annoying
  • not suitable for party play
  • Totem builds don't exactly provide the most exciting gameplay experience

3. Leveling tips

Leveling with totem is extremely easy. Your main priority it to get the Ancestral Bond node (allowing you to spawn additional totem) as soon as possible. You can level up your character using the combination of Searing Bond Totem, and either Flame Totem or RF Spell totem. Keep in mind, if you choose to level up with RF Spell totem, you will be upgrading gems for latter use at the same time. You should have your totem setups socketed in +1 fire gem level wands.

Suggested leveling gem setups:

Searing Bond Totem setup
Searing Bond Searing Bond - a totem spell, that connects your other totems and yourself with a beam of fire, dealing damage every second
Burning Damage Support Burning Damage Support - Searing Bond's damage is considered burning damage, so this is the gem to go
Elemental Focus Support Elemental Focus Support - another good option
Flame totem setup
Flame Totem Flame Totem - the first totem spell you can use in Path of Exile. It shoots projectile-based spells
Faster Casting Support Faster Casting Support - grants the totem increased casting speed, greatly increasing its' dps
Greater Multiple Projectiles Support Greater Multiple Projectiles Support - another great dps support gem option
RF Spell totem setup
Spell Totem Support Spell Totem Support - this spell allows spawning a totem that will cast the supported spells
Righteous Fire Righteous Fire - the core dps spell of this build
Burning Damage Support Burning Damage Support - RF damage is also considered burning damage, and does not benefit from support gems that work with spells that have the "hit" enemies (we will further explain that in the gem section)


Kill all bandits for additional 2 passive points.

Leveling skill trees:

33 Points Skill tree
Priorities: take the fastest route to the 1) Ancestral Bond node, and then 2) Totemic Mastery and 3) Amplify. If you prefer leveling with Flame Totem/Searing bond instead of RF Spell totem, you can take the Holy Fire node instead of Amplify that only benefits your aoe damage

63 Points Skill tree
We suggest taking passive skills in the following order here: 1) Holy Fire 2) Shamanistic Fury 3) Purity of Flash 4) Explosive Impact

Recommended leveling items:

AshcallerAshcaller - is an extremely powerful leveling wand. If you are using either Searing Bond or RF spell totem, it will increase its' damage greatly
(18-22)% increased Spell Damage
Adds (10-14) to (18-22) Fire Damage
Adds (4-6) to (7-9) Fire Damage to Spells
(40-50)% increased Burning Damage
(16-22)% chance to Ignite
10% chance to Trigger Level 8 Summon Raging Spirit on Kill
PyrePyre - grants extremely high burning damage bonus, and decent elemental resistances. It might lack the increased life bonus, however it still can be considered as your late-game items
+(20-30)% to Cold Resistance
+(25-35)% to Fire Resistance
(60-80)% increased Burning Damage
40% of Cold Damage Converted to Fire Damage
10% increased Light Radius
Ignited Enemies you hit are destroyed on Kill
GoldrimGoldrim - one of the best leveling helmets. If you can afford and get one early on it will most likely stay with you untill mapping phase. Grants amazing elemental resistances
+(30-50) to Evasion Rating
10% increased Rarity of Items found
+(30-40)% to all Elemental Resistances
Reflects 4 Physical Damage to Melee Attackers
Level Requirement reduced by 100 (Hidden)
Lavianga's WisdomLavianga's Wisdom - is an amazing mace to level up with RF totem. Increases it's aoe and overall damage
10% reduced Enemy Stun Threshold
+(10-20) to maximum Life
+(10-20) to maximum Mana
(130-160)% increased Physical Damage
5% reduced Movement Speed
10% increased Area of Effect of Area Skills
(10-15)% increased Area Damage

4. Final Skill tree, Ascendancy Points and Pantheon

Final skill tree:

115 Points Final Skill Tree
115 Points Path of Building link

Ascendancy passives:

  1. Arohongui, Moon's Presence
  2. Tukohama, War's Herald
  3. Ngamahu, Flame's Adance
  4. Ramako, Sun's Light


Major God : Soul of Brine King - You cannot be Stunned if you've been Stunned or Blocked a Stunning Hit in the past 2 seconds

Minor God : Soul of Ryslatha - Life Flasks gain 3 Charges every 3 seconds if you haven't used a Life Flask Recently

5. Final gems links

[DPS] RF Spell Totem setup
Righteous Fire

Righteous Fire - it's your main dps skill (cast by your Spell Totems). Righteous Fire is an unusual aoe spell, that deals degeneration fire damage. It does not proc "on hit" effects, and does not benefit from Increased Spell damage. This limits the number of support gems that can be used in this setup.
Righteous Fire can benefit from:

  1. Increased fire damage
  2. Increased area damage
  3. Increased burning damage
  4. Increased elemental damage
  5. Increased damage over time

And certain support gems will have no effect on RF:

  1. Fire Penetration support works only with spells that hit their target
  2. Added Fire/Lightning/Cold/Chaos damage support will have no effect either
  3. Controlled Destruction support apply bonuses only to spell damage, having no effect on RF
Burning Damage Support Burning Damage Support
Elemental Focus Support Elemental Focus Support
Spell Totem Support Spell Totem Support - spawns a Totem that casts your RF spell
Increased Area of Effect Support Increased Area of Effect Support
Swift Affliction Support Swift Affliction Support - one of the few support gems that increases damage over time
[MOBILITY] Shield Charge setup
(Sceptre+Shield only)
Shield Charge Shield Charge - your main mobility skill
Faster Attacks Support Faster Attacks Support - grants additional speed to your Shield Charge
Fortify Support Fortify Support - grants a good damage reduction buff as long as you make melee hits with the Shield Charge attack
[MOBILITY] Flame Dash setup
Flame Dash Flame Dash - your main mobility skill if you are not using shield
Faster Casting Support Faster Casting Support - faster movement speed with FD
[CURSE] Orb of Storms / CoH setup
Orb of Storms Orb of Storms - used to apply your curse 
Curse on Hit Support Curse on Hit Support
Flammability Flammability - recommended curse option.
Chain Support Chain Support - optionally increases the radius of your Orb of Storms
[UTILITY] Golem/Warcry setup
Summon Stone Golem [1L]Summon Stone Golem - stone golem grants Life regeneration, which is useful for both Chieftain and Berserker
Enduring Warcry [3L]Enduring Warcry - again, some additional Life regeneration, and some extra defences from Enduring charges
Increased Area of Effect Support [3L]Increased Area of Effect Support - increases radius of your Warcry
Increased Duration Support [3L]Increased Duration Support - increases duration of your Warcry
[DPS] Searing Bond
Searing Bond Searing Bond - searing bond allows 1 additional totem to be spawned, so basically provides some "free" additional dps
Burning Damage Support Burning Damage Support
Elemental Focus Support Elemental Focus Support
Swift Affliction Support Swift Affliction Support
[UTILITY/DEFENSIVE] Non-Kaom's builds 2L+2L
Scorching Ray [2L]Scorching Ray - a channeling spell that will apply a debuff to monsters, lowering their fire resistance. Can be also linked Spell Totem gem, will however take out one of the active totem "spots" and lower your overall dps. If you do not use the Support Totem Gem with it, Scorching Ray will only lower resistances, it will not deal any damage
Faster Casting Support [2L]Faster Casting Support
Cast when Damage Taken Support [2L]Cast when Damage Taken Support - casts the linked Immortal call. Keep it at level 1 to make the cast more frequent
Immortal Call [2L]Immortal Call - grants brief immortality, do not upgrade it above the level of CwDTS gem

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5. Gear Setup

We are presenting two different versions of the build. One is a standard Sceptre/Shield build, that is more budget-friendly, and can be easily played with 0 unique items. The other one is optimized to provide much higher dps and Life. It will benefit greatly from the burning damage bonus and +2 gem levels on the Searing Touch staff, and the up to 40% Increased fire damage on Kaom's body armour. Incredible Life bonus on Kaom's piece is self-explanatory for any Life build. Depending on the chosen items, your build's budget should range from 50 Chaos Orbs to 15 Exalted Orbs.

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Our recommended items will:

  1. Cap your resistances
  2. Grant sufficient Life pool for mapping
  3. Give you more than enough damage to enjoy the game
  4. Save you at least a couple of hours on planning your build!

Stat priorities on items:

  1. Life
  2. Elemental Resistances
    (With Chieftain Ascendancy you barely need any Fire Resitance on gear)
  3. Burning/Fire/Elemental Damage
  4. Armour

Rare Helmet(Helmet) Rare Life/res helmet - simply go for the highest life/res combination you can afford

Min. requirements:
80 maximum Life
22% Lightning Resistance
22% Cold Resistance
Optional affixes:
increased Righteous Fire damage enchantment
Rare Sceptre(Weapon) Rare Sceptre - IMPORTANT(!) it can't have "added fire damage to spells". This will cause your Orb of Storms to hit with additional Fire Damage, increasing monsters' resistance to fire. Try to get one with high Elemental/Burning/Fire Damage bonuses, possibly attack speed for faster movement with Shield Charge
Min. requirements:
80% increased Burning Damage
Optional affixes:
Elemental Resistances
increased Attack Speed
Doryani's Catalyst(Weapon) Doryani's Catalyst - extremely powerful weapon slot for this build. It doesn't cost much either, but if its the first days of the new league, it might be much easier to get a rare sceptre
32% increased Elemental Damage
Socketed Gems are Supported by level 20 Elemental Proliferation
Adds (65-85) to (100-160) Physical Damage
(11-15)% increased Attack Speed
(6-10)% increased Cast Speed
(30-40)% increased Global Critical Strike Chance
0.2% of Elemental Damage Leeched as Life
(80-100)% increased Elemental Damage
Rare Shield(Shield) Rare high Life/Armor and resistances shield - this should be the easiest to get early in the League
Min. requirements:
100 maximum Life
300 Armour
10% All Elemental Resistances
Lioneye's Remorse(Shield) Lioneye's Remorse - this shield grants a lof of Life, and is rather cheap
3% reduced Movement Speed (Hidden)
+(20-30) to maximum Life
(200-250)% increased Armour
20% increased Stun and Block Recovery
+(160-180) to maximum Life
5% reduced Movement Speed
-25 Physical Damage taken from Projectile Attacks
+5% Chance to Block
Tukohama's Fortress(Shield) Tukohama's Fortress - this is the best in slot shield for the Sceptre/Shield variant of this build. This shield however is extremely expensive
3% reduced Movement Speed (Hidden)
+(20-30) to maximum Life
40% increased Totem Damage
+(80-100) to maximum Life
Can have up to 1 additional Totem summoned at a time
+300 Armour per active Totem
Blood Magic
The Searing Touch(Weapon) The Searing Touch - amazings staff for both Searing Bond and Righteous Fire Builds. The newest variant of this items grant extremely high Burning & Fire damage bonuses (legacy versions applied its' bonuses mainly to spell damage) and extremely valuable +2 to levels of socketed fire gems. 
18% Chance to Block
+2 to Level of Socketed Fire Gems
(70-90)% increased Fire Damage
10% increased Cast Speed
70% increased Burning Damage
Rare Body Armour(Body Armour) Rare Life/Armour/res body armour - most of the items in this guide will cap your resistances. You should alter your searches depending on what type of resistances you get on this piece
Min. requirements:
100 maximum Life
Optional affixes:
Elemental Resistances
Carcass Jack(Body Armour) Carcass Jack - grants extra Area damage, decent Life and resistances. However its' price and lack of availability early in the league might be off-putting
3% reduced Movement Speed (Hidden)
(120-150)% increased Evasion and Energy Shield
+(50-70) to maximum Life
+(9-12)% to all Elemental Resistances
20% increased Area of Effect of Area Skills
(40-50)% increased Area Damage
Extra gore
Kaom's Heart(Body Armour) Kaom's Heart - this items grants the highest Life bonus in the entire Path of Exile. Your overall dps will also get a proper boost with this armour
Has no Sockets
+500 to maximum Life
(20-40)% increased Fire Damage
Leather Belt(Belt) Rare Life/res belt - possibly with extra Strength or Armour bonuses
Min. requirements:
80 maximum Life
25% Lightning Resistance
25% Cold Resistance
Optional affixes:
boots(Boots) Rare Life/res boots - high (20%+) Movement speed bonus is also recommended. We cut costs by taking dual-res pair (you could even aim for the highest possible Lightning resistance and Life, and get away with the Fire/Cold resistances that you will get on 2x Pyre rings)
Min. requirements:
70 maximum Life
25% Lightning Resistance
25% Cold Resistance
20% increased Movement Speed
Optional affixes:
Rare gloves(Gloves) Rare Life/res gloves -  again, high Life/res combination (and low price) is what we are looking for
Min. requirements:
75 maximum Life
30% Lightning Resistance
Optional affixes:
increased Attack Speed
Rare Amulet(Amulet) Rare Life/%Fire/res amulet - you might not need the additional Lightning resistance here, just verify your previous gear if you need it
Min. requirements:
65 maximum Life
10% increased Fire Damage
25% Lightning Resistance
Optional affixes:
Ngamahu Tiki(Amulet) Ngamahu Tiki - this amulet grants the best possible Fire damage bonus on the amulet slot. It also provides some extra life so it's definitely an option worth considering
(2-4) Life Regenerated per second
(50-70)% increased Fire Damage
You gain 100 Evasion Rating when on Low Life
+(30-50) to maximum Life
+(20-30)% to Fire Resistance
1% of Life Regenerated per second while on Low Life
Xoph's Blood(Amulet) Xoph's Blood - this is the BiS item for amulet slot in this build. It will cost however at least a couple Exalted Orbs. Aside from the extremely valuable bonuses it applies the Ash debuff to enemies that hit. Those with the debuff, receive increased fire damage and have thier movement speed slowed. It has a cheaper version called the Xoph's Heart. If you cannot afford it at the time, you can try getting Xoph's Heart instead, and when you get some additional orbs, get the Blessing of Xoph that will upgrade the amulet to its' better version 
+(20-30) to Strength
10% increased maximum Life
+(20-40)% to Fire Resistance
10% increased Strength
Damage Penetrates 10% Fire Resistance
Cover Enemies in Ash when they Hit you
Avatar of Fire
PyrePyre(Rings) 2x Pyre - extremely high damage bonuses. You can possibly get rare rings with bonuses to maximum Life and increased Fire damage, but this burning damage bonus is just hard to replace
+(20-30)% to Cold Resistance
+(25-35)% to Fire Resistance
(60-80)% increased Burning Damage
40% of Cold Damage Converted to Fire Damage
10% increased Light Radius
Ignited Enemies you hit are destroyed on Kill
Cobalt Jewel(Jewels) Rare Life/damage jewels - full dps jewels will be rather cheap, while providing over 30% overall dps bonus. 
Recommended affixes:
% increased maximum Life
% increased Generic/Elemental/Fire/Burning Damage
Optional affixes:
% increased Attack Speed
Spire of Stone(Jewel) Spire of Stone - this unique jewel might be extremely useful for the Berserker class. Berserker's Totems could use some extra Life
3% increased Totem Life per 10 Strength Allocated in Radius
Totems cannot be Stunned
Forbidden Taste(Flask) Forbidden Taste - a great instant life recovery flask
10% chance to Dodge Attacks
10% chance to Dodge Spell Damage
Recover (75-100)% of your maximum Life on use
8% of maximum Life taken as Chaos Damage per second
Atziri's Promise(Flask) Atziri's Promise - this is extremely well-round flask, usefull for pretty much every build that is supposed to deal damage
+35% to Chaos Resistance
2% of Chaos Damage Leeched as Life during Flask effect
Gain (15-20)% of Physical Damage as Extra Chaos Damage during effect
Gain (10-15)% of Elemental Damage as Extra Chaos Damage during effect

Other suggested Flasks:

  1. Cautious Divine Life Flask of Heat (immunity to freeze and chill effects)
  2. Cautious Divine Life Flask of Staunching (immunity to bleeding)
  3. Cautious Divine Life Flask of Warding (immunity to curses)
Forbidden TasteAtziri's PromiseDivine Life FlaskDivine Life FlaskDivine Life Flask

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