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Frost Blades Berserker Build

Frost Blades Berserker Build

Frost Blades build for a Berserker class that's one of the fastest and deadliest Melee builds in PoE

Frost Blades
Berserker Build

Updated for Patch 3.17

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Guide notes
November 18, 2021
-Build created
November 20, 2021
-Added gameplay video
March 8, 2022
-Updated for Patch 3.17
Build overview
Tags: [RANGED] [ELEMENTAL] [LIFE]

Budget: 

Defenses: 

Boss DPS:

AoE:

 

Frost Blades is a Melee Strike Attack that deals Cold Damage via Projectiles it releases upon using it. All your Physical Damage will be converted to Cold after allocating Cold Mastery. It's one of the most devastating builds - with the Berserker Ascendancy, your Critical Strike Chance and Damage, Blitz Charges, and Aspect of Carnage will elevate the build to the highest damage tier. Your character will wield two one-handed swords, but the build is flexible and it doesn't require you to - there are no core items or some specific niche synergy between inconspicuous game mechanics; the foundation of the build is simple as it's just accumulating damage. Paradoxica or The Saviour are some good choices for a weapon; you can also craft or buy a Rare Foil.

The build's strong side is its damage - you can stack Rage and Blitz Charges while your Auras, Ancestral Totems, Warcries, Curses, Berserk Skill, and Duration Spells add up leaving you with millions of DPS. On your Passive Skill Tree, you should go to the left to find sockets for your Fight for Survival Unique Jewels - these require Dexterity in close proximity, there's also a Sword Cluster, and many other very advantageous passives. Your high maximum Life, Fortify, and Armour are the defensive layers, you should be able to have 4 to 6k of Maximum Life, and instant Enduring Cry to recover it quickly. The weakness of this character are Spells and DoT, avoid them at all cost.

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1. Gameplay

Use Frostblades as your only DPS skill, its damage is more than enough for most of the content in the game. Before boss fights, you can activate your Ancestral Protector and Warchief Totems for the further damage increase, activate your Berserk Ability and cast Hydrosphere - you can attack it to gain more Rage and jump into a fight with a lot of it, additionally, it inflicts Exposure for Cold Resistance Penetration. Your Guard Spell is Immortal Call cast automatically via CwDM and your Movement skill is Leap Slam. Be sure to have Blod Rage on at all times, and for your Auras use Precision, Hatred, Herald of Ice, and Defiance Banner. One of your Rings should apply a Curse on Hit - preferably Assassin's Mark. Finally - your Enduring Cry can be used instantly to recover a portion of your Life over time.

 


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2. Build's PROS & CONS

PROS
  • extremely high damage thanks to the use of multiple game mechanics
  • solid, but not really impressive defensives - it can surely endure most of the hits in the game
  • the build has many variations and it can be assembled in many ways depending on your preferences
CONS
  • min-maxing gets expensive
  • vulnerable to spell hits and DoT

 

3. Leveling tips

Start with Frost Blades as a Skill and Sword as a Weapon - quickly convert the rest of your Physical Damage to Cold Damage via Cold Mastery or a Unique Item. Get Fortify Mastery to have a Fortify on Hit, Call to Arms for instant Warcry uses, and go to the left side of a Skill Tree to have viable sockets for Fight for Survival Jewels. After allocating Blitz in your Ascendancy Skill Tree start focusing more on your Critical Strike Chance - you can get it from Sword Cluster, Sword Mastery, other passives, and gear. You won't have to respec many points, you will level from start till the end with the same skill, using the same type of damage.

Suggested leveling Gem setups:

Frost Blades setup
Frost Blades Frost Blades - you can start using this Attack from level 1 and it's really good even during the first acts
Added Cold Damage Support Added Cold Damage Support - adds some additional Cold Damage to your Attacks
Elemental Damage with Attacks Support Elemental Damage with Attacks Support - increases Elemental Damage you deal with your Attacks, at the point which you can use it all your damage should be converted to Cold
Inspiration Support Inspiration Support - lowers the Mana Cost, increases Elemental Damage, and Critical Strike Chance
Auras setup
Hatred Hatred - increases Cold Damage and adds extra Cold Damage based on your Physical Damage
Herald of Ice Herald of Ice - adds and increases Cold Damage, additionally Frozen enemies explode on kill
Curse and Leap Slam setup
Frostbite Frostbite - a Curse to lower the Cold Resistance of your opponents
Leap Slam Leap Slam - a movement Attack that allows you to jump
Lifetap Support Lifetap Support - you spend Life instead of Mana on linked Skills

Bandits:

Kill all three bandits and be rewarded with two additional Skill Points

 

Leveling Skill Trees:

31 Points Passive Tree
Rush for the Cold Mastery to convert your Physical Damage to Cold Damage
 

63 Points Passive Tree
Make a place for Fight for Survival Jewels and get more Critical Strike Chance 

 

Recommended leveling items:

Le Heup of AllLe Heup of All - adds Damage, Attributes and increases Elemental Resistances
Adds 1 to 4 Physical Damage to Attacks
+(10-30) to all Attributes
(10-30)% increased Damage
(10-30)% increased Rarity of Items found
+(10-30)% to all Elemental Resistances
HrimburnHrimburn - with these gloves all your Physical Damage will be converted to Cold Damage when using Frost Blades
+(20-30) to Strength
Adds (5-7) to (13-15) Cold Damage to Spells and Attacks
+(40-50) to Evasion Rating
+(20-30)% to Cold Resistance
50% of Physical Damage Converted to Cold Damage
Reflects 10 Cold Damage to Melee Attackers
Your Cold Damage can Ignite
The HalcyonThe Halcyon - an amulet to increase your Cold Damage and Resistance, additionally granting Freeze bonuses
+(20-30) to Dexterity
(10-20)% increased Cold Damage
+(35-40)% to Cold Resistance
30% increased Freeze Duration on Enemies
10% chance to Freeze
60% increased Damage if you've Frozen an Enemy Recently
GoldrimGoldrim - drastically increases your 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)
Tabula RasaTabula Rasa - a Body Armour that allows you to link any six gems from the start
Item has no level requirement and Energy Shield (Hidden)
Item has 6 White Sockets and is fully linked (Hidden)


4. Final Skill Tree, Ascendancy Points, and Pantheon

Final Skill Tree:

106 Points Final Passive Tree (doesn't include Cluster Jewels)
120 Points Path of Building (PoB) link

Ascendancy points:

Preferably in that order:

  1. Crave the Slaughter
  2. Flawless Savagery
  3. Blitz
  4. Aspect of Carnage

Pantheon:

Major God: Soul of Lunaris: 1% additional Physical Damage Reduction for each nearby Enemy, up to 8%; 1% increased Movement Speed for each
nearby Enemy, up to 8%

Minor God: Soul of Ralakesh: Moving while Bleeding doesn't cause you to take extra Damage; 25% reduced Physical Damage over Time Damage taken while moving

 

5. Final Gems links

[DPS] Frost Blades setup
Frost Blades Frost Blades - Frost Blades are used as the main source of DPS, it's a Strike Skill with a huge Melee Strike Range and one that creates Projectiles on use so it's a really comfortable Attack
Cold Penetration Support Cold Penetration Support - your Skills Penetrate Cold Resistance resulting in increased Cold Damage
Added Cold Damage Support Added Cold Damage Support - adds more Cold Damage to your Attacks
Elemental Damage with Attacks Support Elemental Damage with Attacks Support - Elemental Damage of your Attacks is increased, that includes Cold Damage
Inspiration Support Inspiration Support - lowers the Mana Cost of your Skills, increases Elemental Damage, and Critical Strike Chance as you keep using them
Multistrike Support Multistrike Support - supported Attacks repeat additional times in quick succession which increases your DPS
[UTILITY] Mana-reserving Spells setup
Precision Precision - to save some Mana, keep it at a low level, it increases your Critical Strike Chance and Accuracy Rating
Hatred Hatred - increases Cold Damage and adds extra Cold Damage based on your Physical Damage
Herald of Ice Herald of Ice - adds and increases Cold Damage, additionally Frozen enemies explode on kill
Defiance Banner Defiance Banner - increases Armour, reduces Critical Strike Chance for the nearby enemies, and upon placing it Taunts them while increasing your AoE
[UTILITY] Various gems
Berserk Berserk - consumes Rage to grant a temporary bonus to Attack Speed, Attack Damage, Movement Speed, and less Damage taken
Blood Rage Blood Rage - increases Attack Speed, Life Leech and generates Frenzy Charges on Kill while draining your Life
Enhance Support Enhance Support - Quality increases Damage of Berserk and Attack Speed of Blood Rage
[UTILITY] Various gems
Leap Slam Leap Slam - one of the best movement Attacks that allows you to quickly jump over obstacles
Hydrosphere Hydrosphere - Hydrosphere applies Exposure Debuff on enemies reducing their Cold Resistance, and you can Hit it to generate Rage. It doesn't have to be linked to anything here
Faster Attacks Support Faster Attacks Support - with this Support Gem you're able to use Leap Slam more often
[UTILITY] Ancestral Totems and Ice Golem setup
Ancestral Warchief Ancestral Warchief - a Totem that increases your Melee Damage
Ancestral Protector Ancestral Protector - a Totem that increases your Attack Speed
Multiple Totems Multiple Totems - you're able to summon both Ancestral Totems to gain buffs from both of them
Summon Ice Golem Summon Ice Golem - Ice Golem grants you Accuracy Rating and Critical Strike Chance
[UTILITY] Immortal Call and Enduring Cry setup
Immortal Call Immortal Call - keep it at level 3 so it will trigger more often, it reduces the damage you take for a short time
Cast when Damage Taken Cast when Damage Taken - it should be level 1 to activate Immortal Call automatically when you take damage
Second Wind Support Second Wind Support - stores an additional charge for Enduring Cry
Enduring Cry Enduring Cry - Recovers Life on use, and grats damage reduction if you're using Endurance Charges


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6. Gear Setup

To run this build you won't need any Unique Items, except the two Jewels which are one of the cheapest ones. After capping Elemental Resistances and gaining enough Maximum Life to comfortably run t16 maps focus on damage. The most important part of the build that'd increase your PDS is Critical Strike Chance, added and increased Cold, Elemental, or Physical Damage, Attack Speed, and Critical Strike Multiplier. You gain Blitz Charges on Critical Strike which increases your Attack Speed, but reduces Crit Chance, so to balance it out you will need more Crit Chance that would be usually enough. Be sure to have enough Accuracy Rating, a source of Mana, and Life Leech. You shouldn't have a problem with getting enough Attributes like Intelligence as your Hydrosphere does not need to be leveled all the way up to level 20. If you're using Taste of Hate or have other sources of extra Cold Damage based on your Physical Damage prioritize Physical Damage bonuses over Cold Damage - all your Physical Damage will be converted anyway.

Our recommended items will:

  1. Cap your resistances at 75%
  2. Provide you with enough DPS and Life to start mapping

Stat priorities on items:

  1. Maximum Life
  2. Elemental Resistances
  3. Critical Strike Chance
  4. Critical Strike Multiplier
  5. Added Cold/Elemental/Physical Damage
  6. Increased Cold/Elemental/Physical Damage
  7. Attack Speed
  8. Accuracy Rating
  9. Armour
Rare Helmet(Helmet) Rare Helmet - Blizzard Crown might be a good option for a base as it adds a significant amount of Cold Damage to your Attacks, try to get one that lowers Cold Resistance for your Opponents
Min. requirements:
+60 to Maximum Life
Nearby Enemies have -9% to Cold Resistance
+60% to Elemental Resistances
Optional affixes:
Accuracy Rating
Armour
Global Critical Strike Multiplier
Helmet enchantments:
Frost Blades enchantment mods
Rare Foil(Weapon) Rare Foil - a good one-handed thrusting Sword is extremely expensive, but with some specific affixes it can outperform any other Unique weapon in the game
Min. requirements:
adds 30 Physical Damage
adds 30 Cold Damage
150% increased Physical Damage
Optional affixes:
Accuracy Rating
Attack Speed
Global Critical Strike Multiplier
Paradoxica(Weapon) Paradoxica - the best mods you can hope for are: Attacks with this Weapon Penetrate Elemental Resistances, increased Cold Damage with the chance to Freeze, Attack Speed, and increased Physical Damage
+25% to Global Critical Strike Multiplier
Attacks with this Weapon deal Double Damage
Veiled Prefix
Veiled Suffix
The Saviour(Weapon) The Saviour - it's one of the best Unique Swords in the game, it creates up to two mirages that uses Frost Blades with halved damage in a similar fashion to Mirage Archer increasing your DPS drastically
40% increased Global Accuracy Rating
Triggers Level 20 Reflection when Equipped
(40-50)% increased Physical Damage
Adds (16-22) to (40-45) Physical Damage
(8-12)% increased Attack Speed
(8-12)% increased Critical Strike Chance
Body Armour(Body Armour) Rare Body Armour - besides Maximum Life and Elemental Resistances, aim for added Critical Strike Chance for Attacks
Min. requirements:
+80 to Maximum Life
+50% to Elemental Resistances
Attacks have +1% to Critical Strike Chance
Optional affixes:
You can apply an additional Curse
Enemies you Kill have a #% chance to Explode, dealing a tenth of their Maximum 
increased Area of Effect
increased Maximum Life
Boots(Boots) Rare Boots - you will need a pair of boots with Elemental Resistances, Movement Speed, Maximum Life, and some additional offensive mods
Min. requirements:
+50 to maximum Life
25% increased Movement Speed
+50% to Elemental Resistances
Optional affixes:
chance to gain Onslaught o Kill
You have Tailwind if you have dealt a Critical Strike Recently
chance to gain Elusive on Critical Strike
Rare Gloves(Gloves) Rare Gloves - Maximum Life and Resistances are a must-have, but one of the most expensive and useful mod is the one to allow your Strike Skills to target additional enemies for even better clear speed
Min. requirements:
+60 to Maximum Life
+60% to Elemental Resistances
Optional affixes:
increased Critical Strike Chance
Attack Speed
Adds Cold or Physical Damage
Accuracy Rating
Strike Skills target 1 or 2 additional nearby Enemy
increased Damage with Hits against Chilled/Burning/Shocked Enemies
Stygian Vise(Belt) Rare Belt - Stygian Vise with Life, Resistances, and increased Elemental Damage with Attacks is the best pick for the build
Min. requirements:
+60 to Maximum Life
+70% to Elemental Resistances
40% increased Elemental Damage with Attacks Skills
Optional affixes:
Attributes
increased Maximum Life
Rare Amulet(Amulet) Rare Amulet - Life, Resistances, and at least two of the mods from the list are obligatory, Physical Damage as Extra Cold Damage might be the best Affix to seek
Min. requirements:
80 Maximum Life
+80% to Elemental Resistances
Optional affixes:
increased Elemental Damage with Attack Skills
Adds Physical or Cold Damage to Attacks
Damage penetrates Elemental Resistances
increased Global Critical Strike Chance
Physical Damage as Extra Cold Damage
Attributes
Recommended Anointments:
Disembowelling
Panopticon
Ring(Ring) Rare Ring - a Ring with default defenses and a Curse on Hit should be sufficient, you can additionally look for many other mods to further increase your DPS
Min. requirements:
+60% to Elemental Resistances
+60 to Maximum Life
Curse on Hit - Frostbite or/and Assassin's Mark
Optional affixes:
Adds Cold Damage to Attacks
Accuracy Rating
Global Critical Strike Chance
increased Elemental Damage with Attacks
Non-Channelling Skills have -7 to Total Mana Cost (crafted)
Cobalt Jewel(Jewel) Rare Jewels - you can fix your Elemental Resistances and Attributes if needed, but try to prioritize Maximum Life

Recommended affixes:
7% Maximum Life
Elemental Resistances
Critical Strike Chance
Optional affixes:
increased Attack Speed or Damage with Swords or One-Handed Weapons
Melee Critical Strike Chance or Multiplier
Attributes

Fight for Survival(Jewel) Fight for Survival - these Jewels enhance your Frost Blades, you can socket up to two of them, one near Elemental Equilibrium and the other one next to Fervour
(10-15)% increased Cold Damage
With at least 40 Dexterity in Radius, Melee Damage
dealt by Frost Blades Penetrates 15% Cold Resistance
With at least 40 Dexterity in Radius, Frost Blades has 25% increased Projectile Speed
Watcher's Eye(Jewel) Watcher's Eye - your Auras are Hatred and Precision, try to get a Watcher's Eye with the affixes for increased Critical Strike Chance while affected by these Auras
(4-6)% increased maximum Energy Shield
(4-6)% increased maximum Life
(4-6)% increased maximum Mana
<Two or Three random aura modifiers>
Large Cluster Jewel(Jewel) Large Cluster Jewels - regular Large Cluster Jewels with a base of Attack Damage or Cold Damage should have some great Notable Passives for the build
Recommended affixes:
1 Added Passive Skill is Drive the Destruction
1 Added Passive Skill is Calamitous
1 Added Passive Skill is Martial Prowess
1 Added Passive Skill is Fuel the Fight
1 Added Passive Skill is Doryani's Lesson
1 Added Passive Skill is Blanketed Snow
Taste of Hate(Flask) Taste of Hate - Taste of Hate is a great Flask, you take less damage, you gain extra Cold Damage from your Physical Damage, and Cold Ailments Avoidance
+50% to Cold Resistance
20% less Cold Damage taken
(10-15)% of Physical Damage from Hits taken as Cold Damage during Flask effect
Gain (10-15)% of Physical Damage as Extra Cold Damage during effect
30% chance to Avoid being Chilled during Flask effect
30% chance to Avoid being Frozen during Flask effect
Bottled Faith(Flask) Bottled Faith - more Damage, more Critical Strike Chance, and the bonuses of Consecrated Ground make this flask one of the best of its kind in the game
40% increased Damage
Creates Consecrated Ground on Use
(30-15)% reduced Duration
Consecrated Ground created by this Flask has Tripled Radius
Consecrated Ground created during Effect applies (7-10)% increased Damage taken to Enemies
(100-150)% increased Critical Strike Chance against Enemies on Consecrated Ground during Flask effect

Other suggested Flasks:

  1. Life Flask with Freeze immunity/removal
  2. Diamond Flask with Bleeding immunity/removal
  3. Quicksilver Flask with random ailment removal or increased Movement Speed
Bottled FaithLife Flasktaste of hatediamod flaskquicksilver flask


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