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"Shadow Crafter" Bladedancer End Game Build Last Epoch

"Shadow Crafter" Bladedancer End Game Build Last Epoch

An end-game Bladedancer setup for the most recent Last Epoch's Rogue Class

"Shadow Crafter"
Shadows/Shadow Cascade Bladedancer Build

Updated for Patch 0.8.5f

Build notes:
August 26, 2022
-Build created


Build Overview

Bladedancer's Shadow CascadeShadow Cascade is one of the most interesting Skills in the game. It's an Attack that requires dual-wielding, so it's very offensively oriented. It's repeated by Shadows, so it's very synergistic. Moreover, it deals damage in a large circle around you, so it also offers solid AoE coverage. Thanks to these traits, it has great potential; In the following build, we try to make the most out of it. 

Creating Shadow Clones is a mechanic unique to Bladedancer and this build is based around it. We increase damage done by Clones by investing points in Bladedancer's Passives and by modding our Skills with some specific mods (like Synchronized StrikeSynchronized Strike's Foreshadowing, for example). To unleash insane amounts of AoE Damage, we use Synchronized StrikeSynchronized Strike, ShiftShift, and Shadow CascadeShadow Cascade in rapid succession. This sequence spawns Shadows and makes them deal A LOT of AoE damage. ShurikensShurikens are our support skill, which is cast automatically when we use ShiftShift, and Smoke BombSmoke Bomb is used to increase our Survivability and to spawn some additional Shadows. 

You can also view the full build on the Last Epoch planner here: Shadowmancer Bladedancer Build

For the defenses, this build utilizes:

  1. High Glancing Blow chance. 
  2. Shurikens (Blade Shield combined with Bladed Armor provides a high Armor increase). 
  3. Very high Health Leech combined with insane AoE damage. 

You can also check our other Last Epoch builds and character guides


 Pros  Cons
 Great survivability based on Glanding Blows, Health Leech, and high Armor values   Deals mostly one type of damage - Physical 
 Insane AoE DPS   Rather low Health Pool 
 Very fun playstyle   


Gameplay video

coming soon


Passive Skill Trees

Rogue Skill Tree
Rogue Skill Tree (38 Points)

Notable Passives:

  1. Swift Assassin [8/8] - +24% Attack Speed and +8 Physical Damage. Both of these are great. 
  2. Steady Hand [8/8] - +8 Dexterity and +40 Health. We scale extremely well with Dexterity, so this passive is a must-have. 
  3. Twin Blade [1/1] - Swords and Daggers can now be equipped in the off-hand slot. Damage taken is increased by 15% while dual-wielding. The drawback of this is painful, but we need a weapon in our off-hand, so we don't have a choice. 
  4. Dodge and Parry [5/5] - +30 Dodge Rating and 15% Glancing Blow Chance (Glancing Blows deal 35% Less Damage). Dodge and Glancing Blow are solid defensive modifiers, especially when stacked. 
  5. Duelist [8/8] - +32% Damage and +32% Dodge Rating while dual wielding. This offsets Twin Blade's drawback and gives a lot of extra DPS. 
  6. Critical Precision [8/8] - Increases Critical Rating by 64% per Sword, Dagger, and Bow equipped. We're dual-wielding, so this provides us with a 128% extra Crit Rating! This is also one of the reasons why you should use daggers/swords exclusively. 

Rogue Passive Tree contains multiple powerful modifiers that we take full advantage of. Moreover, it gives us the ability to equip a weapon on our off-hand (the Twin Blade node) which opens up a world of possibilities for creating aggressive and powerful Bladedancer builds - including this one. 

Bladedancer Skill Tree
Bladedancer Skill Tree (70 Points)

Notable Passives:

  1. Cloak of Shadows [8/8] - +8 Dexterity and +16% Chance to receive a Glancing Blow. This is a well-rounded passive which is always worth taking. 
  2. Pursuit [5/8] - +30% Melee Damage, +30% Throwing Damage, and 8% Increased Movement Speed. This is a good way to increase our damage and our overall mobility. 
  3. Once [8/8] - +160 Dodge Rating after being hit and +16 Melee and Throwing Physical Damage. Another solid passive that combines offensive and defensive bonuses. 
  4. Skiasynthesis [6/6] - 90 Health restored when a Shadow is created and 90% increased damage of Shadows. In a build based on Shadow generation, this is insanely good. 
  5. Shroud of Dusk [8/8] - +80 Health and a 32% chance to gain Dusk Shroud when hit. Dusk Shroud is a stacking defensive buff that increases dodge rating by 50 and the chance to receive a glancing blow by 5% per stack. 
  6. Veil of Night [5/5] - +15% increased Melee Attack Speed and a 30% chance to gain Dusk Shroud when using a melee attack and hitting at least 1 enemy with it. This complements Shroud of Dusk very nicely. 
  7. Apostacy [1/1] - You can no longer Dodge attacks (with the exception of Dodging attacks with Silver Shroud), but your Dodge chance is added as twice as much chance to receive a glancing blow. With the amount of Dodge Chance we can stack, this Passive effectively reduces all physical damage taken by 35%, which is insane. 
  8. Blood Dance 5/5] - +5% Melee Life Leech and +50% Health Leech Rate. This will allow us to stay alive in the melee range while surrounded by tougher enemies. 
  9. Flash of Steel [8/8] - +40% Damage while Dual Wielding, and 15% increased Melee and Throwing Attack Speed while Dual Wielding. 
  10. Critical Eye [1/5] - 5% chance to apply Critical Vulnerability and +5% Critical Chance. Critical Vulnerability is a stacking ailment that adds a 5% additional chance to be hit and reduces crit avoidance by 10%. We take this one mostly to unlock All In, but it has some uses against tougher opposition. 
  11. Hooked Blades [5/5] - 50% chance to Shred Armor on Hit and 25% increased Armor Shred Effect. With this, we'll shred Armor in chunks of 125 very often. 
  12. Shadow Master [5/5] - +1 to the Maximum number of Shadows and 100% Increased Shadow Damage. This is the core passive of this build. With it, our shadows become much deadlier and we can have up to 4 of them by default. 
  13. All In [5/5] - +75% to Critical Strike Multiplier at the cost of 25% lower non-critical damage and 25% less Damage over Time. The more Crit Rating we stack, the less of a drawback this has. If we can guarantee a Crit, this has no drawback at all. 

Bladedancers are versatile fighters and their Passive Tree reflects that very well - it contains multiple nodes that affect both the offensive and defensive capabilities of a character. We'll take advantage of most of these as we have damage to deal and we have to be relatively close to our enemies to deal it. Taking attack speed modifiers and life leech will help with that as well. Another extremely important modifier that comes from Bladedancer tree is the Shadow Master which makes our build possible by increasing the max number of shadows and making them deal 100% more damage. All In, when combined with a high enough Crit Rating is extremely powerful as well. 

Marksman Skill Tree
Marksman Skill Tree (5 Points)

Notable Passives:

  1. Focus Fire [5/8] - +5 Dexterity and our attacks reduce the dodge rating of Rare and Boss level enemies by 20% for 8 seconds. 

This is where we dump our remaining points to increase our Dexterity a bit and make rares and bosses a bit easier to hit. 



Note: Left-Clicking on any of the ability trees below will open the full-size version in a new window. 

Shadow Cascade

Shadow Cascade - This is a powerful attack that deals Damage in a circular pattern around you. When you use it, your Shadows will cast it as well which makes it deal insane amounts of Damage when you have multiple Shadows around. With the chosen mods, our Shadow Cascade offers a large AoE coverage, shreds enemies' armor, and deals a lot of damage. Moreover, it actually restores mana on use, which helps with our sustain by quite a bit. It works the best when used after Synchronized StrikeSynchronized Strike and ShiftShift

  1. Shadow Torrent [2/4] - +6% Damage per Shadow. We're able to generate more Shadows than we really need, so this is an amazing DPS boost. 
  2. Rapid Expanse [4/4] - 80% Increased Shadow Cascade's AoE. This, combined with multiple spawned Shadows allows us to cover a large portion of the screen with Shadow Cascades. Having 4/4 here is a must. 
  3. Dismantle [5/5] - With this, Shadow Cascade will have +200% Armor Shred Chance, which is nice as we deal only Physical Damage pretty much. 
  4. Onslaught [1/1] - 25% of Shadow Cascade's Mana Cost is refunded when Shadow Cascade is used with at least 1 active Shadow. We'll always have active Shadows, so this will trigger all the time (and effectively reduce ShiftShift's mana cost by a bit as well, as Shifting triggers Shadow CascadeShadow Cascade too). 
  5. Fight in the Shadows [2/2] - 6 Mana gained per active Shadow when the Shadow CascadeShadow Cascade is used. This basically removes any mana management from the build as Shadow CascadeShadow Cascade restores more mana than it costs with this. 
  6. Gloomstalker [2/2] - 40% chance for Shadow Cascade to spawn a Shadow on Kill. Even more Shadows? Why not!
  7. Carnage [4/4] - +60% to Critical Multiplier. This is self-explanatory; everybody likes big damage numbers and this makes bigger damage numbers show up on the screen. 
Shadow Cascade

Synchronized Strike

Synchronized Strike - Jump forward and strike an area in front of you while shadows appear and repeat your attacks. This amazing Skill allows us to spawn multiple Shadows, and Shadows increase our DPS to insane levels. With the chosen mods, Synchronized StrikeSynchronized Strike allows us to exceed our normal Shadows limit. Moreover, it makes our Shadows deal increased damage for some time. If we combine it with our Shadow CascadeShadow Cascade and ShiftShift, the results are simply devastating. 

  1. Growing Darkness [1/4] - +20% increased AoE. We mainly need this to get to the Dark Allies node, but bigger coverage is always welcome. 
  2. Foreshadowing [5/5] - Shadows created within 4 seconds of using Synchronized Strike deal +200% Increased Damage. This is the reason why we always want to use Synchronized StrikeSynchronized Strike before Shadow CascadeShadow Cascade and ShiftShift. Also, with Synchronized StrikeSynchronized Strike's low Cooldown, we can keep this modifier active almost all the time (mana is the only limiting factor here). 
  3. Dark Allies [1/1] - This makes Synchronized Strike create 2 additional Shadows, but it doubles its Mana Cost. Shadows created this way are not limited by the usual maximum number of Shadows. Thanks to this mod, we can have much more than our usual 4 Shadows. 
  4. Coordinated Cuts [1/5] - Synchronized Strike has a 20% chance to Shred the enemy's Armor and the effectiveness of Armor Shred applied that way is increased by 10%. 
  5. Dynamics [3/3] - +30% Mana Efficiency. This is great as it lowers the drawback of Dark Allies quite significantly. 
  6. Art of the Blade [5/5] - Using Synchronized StrikeSynchronized Strike grants 25% increased Attack Speed for 3 seconds. This allows us to unleash our other skills much quicker after using Synchronized StrikeSynchronized Strike
  7. Shadow Rush [4/5] - Shadows created within 4 seconds of using Synchronized StrikeSynchronized Strike restore 160 Health on creation. Health gains from this are massive, as we have multiple ways of spawning Shadows. 
Synchronized Strike


Shurikens - At its base, this is a simple Skill that makes you throw Shurikens at your enemies. We won't be using it. Instead, it will trigger automatically when we use ShiftShift. With the selected mods, ShurikensShurikens will circle around our character increasing our Armor and damaging enemies that get too close (as well as Shredding their armor). This is a nice utility/support skill that increases our survivability, makes enemies more susceptible to our damage, and slightly increases our overall DPS. 

  1. Alacrity [3/5] - +15% Increased Attack Speed for ShurikensShurikens
  2. Ethereal Blades [4/4] - +100% chance for Shurikens to pierce through their targets. This makes ShurikensShurikens much more effective against packs of rushing enemies. 
  3. Abrasive Arsenal [4/4] - Gives Shurikens a chance to Shred the target's Physical and Poison Resistances. Shred stacks up to 20 times and each stack reduces the Resistance by 5% (2% against Bosses). This offers a solid DPS increase against tougher enemies as we're able to stack Shred very reliably with ShiftShift (as Shifting throws Shurikens). 
  4. Thin Shurikens [1/1] - +2 Additional Shurikens thrown per skill use, but ShurikensShurikens cost 3 additional Mana. 
  5. Blade Shield [1/1] - This changes how Shurikens work completely: They will now create a Shield around you for 3 seconds and damage enemies that get too close. This turns Shurikens into a nice defensive skill when we combine it with the Bladed Armor node. 
  6. Floating Blades [4/4] - With this, Blade Shield will last 60% longer making it much easier to maintain. 
  7. Bladed Armor [3/3] - +30% Armor per Shuriken spinning around you. This potentially allows us to stack incredible amounts of Armor. 


Shift - A movement Skill that allows us to Teleport a short fixed distance in the target direction. It is one of the most versatile skills in the game and a highlight of most Rogue-archetype builds. With the featured Setup, Shifting will also create Shadows that will mimic some of our Skills, throw multiple Shurikens that will increase our survivability (thanks to Blade Shield mod), restore a portion of our health, kill off wounded enemies (the ones at below 15% max Health), make our next Skill used after shifting deal more Damage, and automatically trigger Shadow CascadeShadow Cascade. As you can see, ShiftShift is much more than just a movement skill. 

  1. Shadow Recuperation [2/3] - Shifting restores 30 Health. Healing Effectiveness increases this effect. 
  2. Sleight of Hand [5/5] - Using Shift now also makes us throw 5 Shurikens at nearby enemies. This node synergizes with Blade Shield and improves our survivability as well as DPS. 
  3. Unseen Strike [1/1] - If ShiftShift is used with a melee weapon, when Shifting you perform an Unseen Strike that hits enemies along your path. This is amazing when combined with the next node in line - Consumed by Shadow
  4. Consumed by Shadow [3/3] - Adds a Kill Threshold of 15% total HP to ShiftShift. With this, Unseen Strike will instantly kill every enemy that has 15% or fewer remaining Hitpoints. This is especially useful against Bosses and Rares with large health pools. 
  5. Velocity [4/4] - Your next Damaging Non-Channelled Skill used after Shifting deals 100% Increased Damage. You should use Shift before using Shadow CascadeShadow Cascade to take full advantage of this one. 
  6. Momentum [3/3] - +50% Movement Speed gained for a brief moment (1.5 seconds) after using ShiftShift
  7. Lasting Presence [1/1] - A shadow is created at the place you shifted from. This build heavily relies on Shadow synergies, which makes this node a must-have. 
  8. Dancing Shadows [1/1] - You attack with Shadow CascadeShadow Cascade after Shifting if you have a melee weapon equipped. This is an amazing upgrade to Shift. It turns a simple mobility skill into a potent AoE. 

Smoke Bomb

Smoke Bomb - Creates a Smoke Cloud at our feet to conceal ourselves from enemies. This is our synergy skill that increases our DPS (by creating Shadows) and Survivability (by giving us Silver Shroud stacks). It creates Shadows each second and grants a Silver Shroud stack every 2 seconds. 

  1. Shrouded in Darkness [1/1] - This Grants us a stack of Dusk Shroud each second for 2 seconds while we remain in the Smoke Cloud. Dusk Shroud gives us a +50 to Dodge Rating and a +5% Chance to Receive a Glancing Blow. 
  2. Impending Gloom [4/4] - Increases Smoke Bomb's Radius and Growth Speed by 40%. 
  3. Rapid Concealment [4/4] - Increases Dusk Shroud's application frequency by 100%. 
  4. Lingering Fumes [5/5] - 50% increased Smoke Bomb Duration. This is important as it ensures a steady flow of Shadows. 
  5. Smoke Blades [1/5] - This adds a stacking buff that takes effect when you remain in Smoke Bomb's AoE. 
  6. Blood Bandit [1/3] - Smoke Bomb makes you Leech 2% of your Melee and Throwing Damage as Health. 
  7. Umbral Assault [4/4] - Gives Smoke Bomb a chance to create a Shadow each second at a random location inside the Smoke Cloud. With 4/4 this has a 100% chance to create a Shadow each second. With this, we are guaranteed to have some Shadows around, even if we don't attack for a while.  
Smoke Bomb



Stat priority:

This build is heavily DPS-oriented so after you take care of your basic defensive needs (these include Health Leech, Health, and Resistances), you should focus on the offense by stacking Melee Damage and Crit Multiplier. Increasing the Damage of Skills used by Shadows is also a great idea as Shadows deal a large portion of this build's overall DPS. Things like Armor Shred and Physical Penetration are worth your consideration too. If you're starved for mana, adding some additional Mana Regen might be a good idea as well. 

  1. Melee Damage 
  2. Critical Multiplier 
  3. Increased Damage of Skills used by Shadows 
  4. Armor Shred 
  5. Melee Attack Speed 
  6. Health Leech 
  7. Health 
  8. Resistances 

Recommended Unique Items: 


Bleeding Heart
  • (5-15)% increased Melee Attack Speed 
  • (5-15)% increased Throwing Attack Speed 
  • (35-25)% less Health Regen 
  • (5-9)% of Damage Leeched as Health 
  • You are inflicted with bleed when you cast a spell 

Bleeding Heart - With this amazing amulet, we'll be almost unkillable for as long as we have enough enemies to attack. Considering the facts that our Shadow Cascade has amazing AoE coverage and that we have 50% increased Leech efficiency from passives, Bleeding Heart is a BiS choice for us. 

Woven Flesh
  • +220 Armor 
  • (2-4)% increased Health 
  • (2-4)% of Overkill Damage Leeched as Health 
  • (20-40)% increased Damage Leeched as Health 
  • (20-40)% Increased Leech Rate 
  • +100% Critical Strike Avoidance 

Woven Flesh - For a build that deals high amounts of damage with individual hits, this Unique Gladiator Armor is simply irreplaceable (when it comes to increasing survivability, that is). It not only takes the build's Health Leeching capabilities to a whole new level but also adds whopping +100% Critical Strike Avoidance! If you want to make sure that your character won't ever die, consider equipping this amazing piece of kit. 


  • (3-8)% increased Movement Speed 
  • (65-115)% Increased Damage for skills used by Shadows 
  • (10-15)% Increased Shadow Daggers Effect 
  • 50% Chance to apply a Shadow Dagger on Hit with Lethal Mirage 
    • Upon reaching 4 stacks of {Shadow Daggers}, the Daggers plunge into the target, dealing physical damage. This damage always critically strikes.
  • +(15-25)% Critical Strike Multiplier 
  • (5-10) Health Gain on Crit 

Penumbra - This amazing unique silver ring not only restores our Health each time we deal Critical Damage (and we deal a lot of Crits with this build), but it also increases Damage done by Shadows up to +115% (this is more than the Shadow Master passive!). If you want to maximize your DPS with this build, wearing two of these is a great idea. 


Shattered Chains
  • +(50-100) Armor 
  • +3 Potion Slots 
  • (50-70)% increased Armor 
  • +(5-10) Melee Void Damage 
  • (50-70)% increased Melee Damage 
  • Using a Potion Cleanses Stun and Freeze 
  • Stun Immunity for 4 seconds when you use a Potion 

Shattered Chains - This Unique Plated Belt offers an unparalleled mix of offensive, defensive, and utility modifiers. Firstly, it will increase our Melee Damage by up to +70% and add some Melee Void Damage to our attacks. Secondly, it will increase our Armor by quite a bit. Thirdly, it will allow us to cleanse Stuns and Freezes by simply drinking a potion. And, on top of all this, it will give us stun immunity for 4 seconds after a potion is used. If you're looking for a well-rounded universal belt, it doesn't get much better than this. 


Smoke Weaver
  • +9 Melee Physical Damage 
  • +2% Critical Strike Chance 
  • +(40-50) Melee Physical Damage 
  • +(20-35)% Chance to Blind on Melee Hit 
  • +(250-410) Dodge Rating 
  • (20-25)% Reduced Shift Distance 
    • Multiplicative with nodes on the Shift Tree
  • (20-25)% Increased Cooldown Recovery Speed for Shift 

Smoke Weaver - This is a very interesting choice for our build, as it reduces ShiftShiftShift's Cooldown by quite a bit (especially if you dual wield it). With this Dagger, Shift becomes a much more potent offensive ability - Spamming Shadow CascadeShadow Cascade through ShiftShift is a real possibility with two of these, not to mention the number of Shurikens we can spawn in the process... All in all, a pair of Daggers with high Crit Multiplier and high Melee Physical Damage will work better, though (we had to mention this Dagger, however, as it's fun). 



You should focus your Idols around maximizing your DPS. To do so, you should equip Grand Majasan Idols with Critical Strike Multiplier and Increased Damage with Daggers. Large Shadow Idols and Huge Shadow Idols are even better if you have 2 of each. In such a case, use Large ones with Health and Increased Damage of Skills used by Shadows, and Huge ones with Physical Penetration and Increased Damage of Skills used by Shadows. If you lack survivability, Stout Lagonian Idols with Health and Health% are a solid option as well. If you have a 1x1 slot remaining, consider adding a Small Eterran Idol with Increased Physical Damage and Dodge Rating. 

Recommended Blessings:

  • The Black Sun: Dodge Rating, Leech Rate, and Crit Multiplier are all solid options from this timeline. Increased Health can also be used in a pinch. We prefer Crit Multiplier as there's no such thing as too much damage. 
  • The Age of Winter: This timeline offers a range of solid defensive and offensive passives. You should choose one that will give you what you're lacking the most. In our case, it's Chance to Shred Physical Resistance on Hit, but +Physical Resistance is great as well. 
  • Spirits of Fire: Dodge Rating, Fire Resistance, and Endurance are the only contestants in this timeline. We prefer Dodge Rating as it's the most synergistic. 
  • Reign of Dragons: All Resistances Critical Strike Avoidance, and Increased Physical Damage are solid options. Choose one of them, depending on your needs - we recommend the Cruelty of Strength as extra Physical Damage tends to have the highest value. 
  • Ending the Storm: Not many useful things here, so either grab Lightning Resistance or Mana. 



This is the beta version of our Shadowmancer Bladedancer build for Last Epoch. It offers tremendous AoE coverage and insane DPS, thanks to the SHadows mechanic. If you're looking for a unique melee fighter, you'll definitely enjoy it. Obviously, as the game gets new content updates, we will be updating this guide regularly, though it may be impossible to be done after each Patch. 

Pictures used in this article are the intellectual property of Eleventh Hour Games