3.16 Storm Brand Inquisitor

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Still sane, Exile?

I'd like to share my Storm Brand Inquisitor League-Starter for 3.16.
Initially I didn't think I'd end up enjoying this character as much as I do and as it was a rather smooth start into 3.16.


Current Build and Items:
Final Skilltree:

The build concept is quite similar to the one by Balormage https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wX7pyvqqIfM with a few twists. So if you want to see gameplay or get the general idea, just refer to his video series.

Buld Concept
– Brand playstyle: Cast and forget
– Hybrid Life/Energy Shield + Glancing Blows + Corrupted Soul
– Very strong hybrid regeneration from Inquisitor (Pious Path)
– Crit build (Inevitable Judgement)

Build Weaknesses
– No Regen maps
– Chaos damage hits
– Physical oneshots
– Medium boss dps (no insta phasing)
– Glorious Vanity Jewel hard to get early on

Build Strenghts
– High Regen (1k/s Life/EnergyShield)
– 44%/75% Block (Glancing Blows, Tempest Shield)
– Immune to Shock (Tempest Shield)+Immune to Fronzen (Soul of Brine King)
– Respectable Armour (~15k, 3k Molden Shell))
– Easy levelling
– High mobility (Flame Dash, Quicksilver, Onslaught/Elusive (Boots))


Main Link:
Body: Storm Brand + (awakened) Added Lighnting Damage + Conc Effect + Inc Crit Strikes + Inc Crit Damage + Choice (Swiftbrand max dps, Energy Shield Leech, Inspiration, Hypothermia, Empower…)

Weapon: Brand Recall + Flame Dash + Arcane Surge

Gloves: Orb of Storms + Power Charge on Crit + (divergent) Innervate + Culling Strike

Boots: Vaal Molten Shell + Enduring Cry + Summon Stone Golem + (vaal) Righteous Fire
Unless you got a no/less regen map you can just leave normal righeous fire on for extra damage.

Helmet: Zealotry + Wrath + Purity of Fire + Petrified Blood

Shield: Vitality + Determination + Tempest Shield

Additional Skills:
Ring: Assasins Mark on hit
Gloves: Temp Chains/Enfeeble on hit


Weapon: Any weapon with high spell damage, Crit Chance, Cast Speed, Level of Gems
An interesting alternative is a Sceptre with Secrets of Suffering implicit – Britte makes capping crit against everything extremely easy before you get good crit gear/passives. I leveled with the sceptre in the 2nd weapon set and skitterbots instead of purity of fire for still having shock and chill on enemies.

Weapon 2: Prism Guardian – this is what makes low life work well

Helmet: Crown of the Inward Eye – BIS for the build, great hybrid stats (Armour, Energy Shield, % life/ES, damage)
The Helmet needs the Socketed Gems get a 90% Cost&Reservation Multiplier Corruption Implicit to fit all Auras, which is pretty easy to get after a few days since it is a prime corruption target.

Body: Frenzy on Hit/Life, highend option with additional curse/blind or spellcrit possible, but too expensive for me

Gloves: Shaows and Dust with Curse of choice corrupt – easy to get, Alternative just rare gloves with chaos resist and life

Boots: Life, Elusive on Crit, Onslaught on kill craft – fairly obtainable

Amulet: Anything with Zealotry/Wrath has increased Mana Reservation Efficiency

Ring: Assassins Mark on Hit, reduced ele reflect taken/reduced curse effect/life gain on spell hit as QOL
Ring 2: Call of the Brotherhood for Cold conversion (Freeze/Brittle) – freeze is good defensively, different rare rings possible

Belt: Life + Resist/Tactician

Jewels: Glorious Vanity – Doryani + Watcher's Eye (Zealotry, Wrath, Vitality, Determination Effects)
Possible to use a Cluster Jewel through top right instead of going to Shadow area (more damage, less life)

Flasks: Bleed Immune Life Flask + Enduring Manaflask + Atziris/Bottled Faith + Quicksilver + Granite


Glancing Blows + Tempest Shield + Safeguard Notable (50 Es on Block) combined gives max Spellblock and Shock immunity (great defensively) for very little investment. Glancing Blows is mitigated by high regen. Scourge on Prism Guardian (+Attack Block) makes it possible to max out Attack Block with Sanctuary and Shield Mastery (Block Chance per Block Chance on Shield) but it's 4 Passive investment and requires Scourged Prism Guardian. Instead I use a 47 life on block scourge.

Corrupted Soul splits all damage except Chaos into life and energy shield equally. Since we regenerate both at the same rate, it's a huge survivability boost. Life and ES should be close to equal as a result for maximum EHP. We easliy achieve this by 25% Life as ES (10% Chest, 15% Corrupted Soul) ans dome ES gear. Life is primary stat to scale defence against oneshots while life regen gives sustain against prolonged fights.

Petrified Blood + Pain Attunement is a great combo after getting Prism Guardian. With this we can reserve 50% of our life without losing much EHP, gaining 3 auras (vitality, determination and tempest shield) which help defensively. Also 30% more damage from Pain Attunement.

Mana Reservation Efficiency + Life Reservation Efficiency helps with enabeling 3x 50% 2x 35% 1x 25% and flat life cost auras for a total of 7. They all add something to the build although not mandatory in of itself. The changed aura mechanics in 3.16 make this possibe including reservation efficiency masteries and gear choices. For this reason we path to the Influence Cluster although one might drop that area while losing 1 or 2 auras.

The rest of the skilltree is just picking up good damage and life nodes.
You can annoint damage or survivability passives, with Hearty adding to our already great regen, infused flesh enabeling damage recouped as life (synergy with petrified blood) or just getting Divine Judgement for damage. All % Life nodes are great too as well as +2 max resist or Soul of Steel. You can get creative here.
Same with the last few passives – 4 Points can get you Sanctuary, Vapirism, Whispers of Doom, Throatseeker, Cluster Jewel or Storm Weaver.

Overall, this build can do most everything that I need it to do. It was quite enjoyable to build around its many layered mechanics and levelling was smooth with storm brand. I don't invest much time into playing (3days 4 hours /played with some afk) but I made it to level 92 and am currenty working in t16 maps towards Awakener 8. Deaths are few and far between after I got a healthy amount of chaos res. The build can run through scourge well enough, it sometimes gets rippy at 150+ Stacks though. Full clearing the scourge world in good layouts (e.g. haunted mansion, canyon) is entirely possible. Map mods are no problem, curse ones are free due to reduced curse effect and reflect is no issue with pantheon+ring. No regen is doable with care, damage mods (-max res, crit chance/multi and added as extra) can be rippy, especially combined with scourge stacks.
There are some gear upgrades possible, such as Bottled Faith/additional Curse chest/amulet which would free up some passives. Cluster jewels could increase damage (lightning, 8 passives).
My only gripe with this build is the damage. While it clears pretty well due to 5 brands and chaining, singletarget DPS sits at around 1-1.5kk damage with bursts up to 2-3kk with orb of storms and righteous fire on. It is enough for the most part but it's not “explode the screen” enough. Also the gear isn't beginner friendly as it requires a timeless jewel (I got mine for 2 Ex) and a build switch to low life with prism guardian after level 68.

If you can improve this build, or want to share your experience with a similar one, please do.


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