Forum Index Witch [3.6 Video Guide] Beginner Friendly: Winter Orb Elementalist [Uber Elder & Fast]


This thread goes through all the details of the build, for gameplay & TLDR guide version check out: Winter Orb Build Guide Video

If you have any questions you can always come to my twitch stream to get them answered or just to enjoy the stream: Ghazzy's Livestreaming Channel

Path of Building Link for the guide:
Simply go to "Import/Export Build" > Click the "Import from Pastebin" paste the link in there, and then click "Import"

Low Budget Acrobatics / Phase Acrobatics version:

Trickster Version:
Inquisitor Version:
Old Life Elementalist Version:

The DMG calculations in PoB seems to be extremely off and only count for the average hit dmg of 1 projectile, despite the fact that the explosions from each projectile is able to shotgun. So with this build you can take your DPS and multiply it with 7 to see the actual DPS output of your Winter Orb.


If you don't have the endgame items (dual beltimber + frostferno) do this:

There are multiple ways to make this build extremely efficient before the uniques become available and later extremely cheap in a new league, examples below.

Use Herald of Ice (Ash if Avatar) + Hatred and Herald of Purity in the Malachai and use WO in a Tabula. This is IF you have Avatar of Fire. If not then I'd rather suggest for you to skip the Malachai's Artifice till you do.

- Winter Orb -> GMP -> Cold to Fire -> Infused Channeling -> Combustion -> Increased Duration (QoL).

Single Target can be done in 2 different ways depending on if you pick up Avatar of Fire or not.

With Avatar of Fire:

- Ice Spear, Unleash, Elemental Focus, Cold2Fire

Without Avatar of Fire:

- Lightning Spire Traps, Trap/Mine Damage, Elemental Focus, Lightning Penetration

Try to get Scepters with 40% elemental damage implicit (Opal or Void), with any spell damage on it, if no spell damage craft Spell Damage on the bench.


Is this build for you?

1. If you are looking for a Winter Orb build that has good enough single target damage for the end-game!

2. A build capable of competing in the clear speed meta.

3. Boss kill potential despite being designed as a clear speed build.

4. A cheap yet very effective clear speed build.

5. If you prefer a build guide that has a video linked to it.


How the build functions:

You level up the build generally by not using Winter Orb itself, you can read the leveling tips further down in this guide.

Winter Orb is a channeling ability that builds up stages up to 10 (12 with helmet enchant from uber lab), that then decays over a duration. The higher the stack is the more frequent your orb you've created over your head will shoot projectiles that then explodes on the ground in an AoE based damage area. This AoE damage shotguns, which means that each projectile can hit the same target, this is why we use weapons like Beltimber. This makes the build function very similarly to a Blade Vortex build where you charge up the ability, then you move through the map whilst your ability kills everything to then only stop briefly to recharge a few stages of your ability.

A lot of people have complained about the lack of single target Winter Orb has, so I've designed this build to sort that issue this way:

The Winter Orb is designed to be our generic clearing ability which also helps Ice Spear via Combustion as well as itself.

So for single target we are using an Unleash - Ice Spear combination that looks like this:

- Ice Spear, Unleash, Controlled Destruction, Cold to Fire, Elemental Focus, Added Cold

This allows Winter Orb to drop enemies fire resistance on enemies and you only use Ice Spear for harder enemies and/or bosses which completely destroys them!

The core design of this build is to simply explode enemies with Herald of Ash using Winter Orb and then delete bosses in no time at all with the Unleash Ice Spear.


Build Enabling Items:

The only truly enabling item would be the Beltimber as this makes you able to ignore using GMP support gem in your Winter Orb setup as well as scales your Ice Spear single target significantly. Before you can afford the item you simply want any weapons that would scale Elemental, Spell, Cold or Projectile damage.


Defence & Utility

The build is designed to explode everything it comes near and on top of this it has well over 5000 eHP + Acrobatics & Phase Acrobatics which makes it a very suitable beginner friendly build.

The utility toolkit comes in the form of the following:
Vaal Righteous Fire, this is used as an extra damage boost for bosses or tougher enemies such as the Immortal Syndicate members!


Pantheon Choices:

Pantheon List

Major God:

- Soul of Lunaris
Basically just helps with avoiding some projectile damage as well as chaining projectiles from our golem to us.


- Soul of the Brine King
This is used to avoid getting chain stunned, however, we should always have active stages of Winter Orb so this shouldn't be needed. I prefer Lunaris myself.

Minor God:

- Soul of Shakari
Reduces chaos damage taken and if you upgrade it you're immune to poison


Skill-gems & Setups:

Ice Spear:

- Ice Spear, Unleash, Controlled Destruction, Cold to Fire, Elemental Focus, Added Cold

Unleash is not shown in PoB but it will repeat the DPS displayed 3 times more with slightly less dmg (26%) making the single target DPS insane with the click of 1 button every 2-3 seconds. Do keep in mind that you need to stay a bit back so the projectiles reaches the second form as well as aiming the mouse as far away as possible to avoid spreading the projectiles. Also note that faster projectiles modifiers are bad as the second form won't happen as early which means you want 0% quality on your gem.

If you decide to use the higher budget items such as Yoke of Suffering, it is important to make sure Ice Spear can shock enemies, at which point Elemental Focus is replaced and Added Cold will take its place. If you then add another socket to the links it would be Slower Projectiles.

Winter Orb:

- Winter Orb, Increased Duration, Combustion, Infused Channeling

Before you get yourself a Frostferno you're gonna want to change Infused Channeling or Duration for Cold to Fire. We are mainly clearing with this ability and making sure it applies Combustion on bosses for the insane single target damage provided by Ice Spear.


- Hatred

- Herald of Ash

- Herald of Purity

- Vaal Righteous Fire, Increased Duration

The Herald of Purity doesn't do much for us, but by having it linked in the Malachai's Artifice with Hatred being applied to these minions, they will then apply Cold damaged Elemental Equilibrium which significantly increases our fire damage dealt to enemies.

Vaal Righteous Fire is only used for increased damage vs bosses in general.


- Leap Slam, Faster Attacks, Fortify

- Portal


- Cast When Damage Taken, Immortal Call, Wave of Conviction

Make sure to keep CWDT at a low lvl I prefer lvl 3 and Immortal Call cannot be higher than lvl 5 with that in mind.

Wave of Conviction with Avatar of Fire allows us to make enemies take even more fire damage from our Winter Orb & Ice Spear!

Regarding Charges:

Intuitive Leap is used to reach Overcharged however, vs bosses like Shaper and/or Uber Elder you can use something like Power Charge on Crit via Orb of Storms if you wish.


Skill-tree & Ascendancy Nodes:

Ascendancy Nodes:

You start with picking up Pendulum of Destruction, then you wanna get the Mastermind of Discord.
Once done, you want to head over to Shaper of Desolation and finish of with Beacon of Ruin!

Leveling skill-tree, 37 points

Leveling skill-tree, 87 points

Finished skill-tree

Once the skill-tree is finished you should focus 100% on adding more jewels to it!


Leveling Tips:

What skills to use:

You start of by using Freezing Pulse which should be linked with Arcane Surge and either Added Cold or Added Lightning.
Once lvl 12, you should pick up Arc, now this gives you 2 different options:
1) Self-cast, this means you want to pick up Elemental Overload and have the links look like this:

- Arc, Arcane Surge, Added Cold, Added Lightning

This can later in act 2 get the additions of Faster Casting, Controlled Destructions which would replace 1 of the added supports and Arcane Surge.

The other approach looks like this which I personally prefer:

- Arc, Trap, Multiple Traps, then either Added Cold or Added Lightning

At this point you can still spec Elemental Overload but will then require you to use something like Orb of Storms to proc as the traps won't proc it for you. This should carry you all the way to the point where you can switch to Winter Orb!

LvLing Auras:

In Act 2, you'll be able to get Herald of Ice & Herald of Thunder. This won't change till you hit act 3 in which case you can switch your Herald of Ice for Wrath.

If you do so, make sure you get yourself a weapon or shield to have in your off-slot that is not active, to lvl up your Herald of Ice in. This is also a good opertunity to get 1 or more Winter Orb gems to lvl in your off-slot as well so you don't forget to add those. This is done to avoid having an under lvld gem when it's time to transition.

General Tips

This setup should have no problems carrying you all the way till you want to transition, so when is the best time to transition to Winter Orb?
You simply stop at Blood Aqueduct in Act 9, to farm 9 Humility Divination Cards this will then be handed in to Tasuni in Act 9 town for a Tabula Rasa. At which point you should have no problems playing with Winter Orb, I do strongly recommend making sure you have the Malachai's Artifice with a Lightning Golem, all of these links are visible in the skill-gem setup in this guide.


- Save Alira for the crit multi/res.


Gearing & Stat Priorities

With the unique items suggested the body armour can literally be anything from the classic Tabula Rasa to an Atziri's Splendour or any rare hybrid Evasion/ES chest piece with good life as well as resistance rolls. My preferred choice to keep budget down is to use Shroud of the Lightless, you'll however deal less damage than a proper 6L.

The base items of this build really doesn't matter as we don't care about the base defensive stats such as armour(str), evasion(dex) or energy shield(int). So instead the base items will follow the stat priority listed in this guide.
However, the attribute requirement of the items will base how hard it is to chrome (color) which will be the only thing we will think about when planing our gearing.
So, if you need 4 blue sockets in an item the recommendation is to get an item that has Energy Shield (int) base or a hybrid base which includes Energy Shield (int).

By using this chrome calculating website: you can easily track how hard it will be to chrome the colors you need. This YouTube playlist can help a lot for new players and also includes a few tricks when coloring items with the "wrong attribute requirements" for your build:

It is generally preferred to use Energy Shield bases as it provides us with another layer of defence to our eHP.

High Budget Gearing:

The build offers a lot of options, one style I really liked myself is to chance orb a Malchai's Artifice from an ELDER Unset ring, this allows us to utilize Mark of the Shaper for a very noticable damage increase.

Another option is to pick up Yoke of Suffering which allows our fire damage to shock enemies. Ice Spear is one of the very few abilities in the game that can somewhat reliably reach the 50% increased damage taken threshold which makes this item one of the biggest damage increasers. However, you must drop Elemental Focus support gem and change it to Slower Projectiles or Added Cold if you're using a Shroud of the Lightless.

Defensive Stats:

1. Life
2. Resistances
3. Strength

Offensive Stats:

1. Cold Damage
1. Spell Damage


1. Flat Life
2. Cold Damage
2. Spell Damage/Spell Damage whilst dual wielding


1x Seething Life FLask of w/e Staunching
1x Dying Sun a cheaper option would be to make sure you have more fire res than any other resistances and use The Wise Oak
1x w/e prefix Diamond Flask of Warding
1x w/e prefix Silver Flask of Dousing
1x w/e prefix Quicksilver flask of Heat


Recommended Unique Items:

Bisco's Leash
Tabula Rasa
Malchai's Artifice
Shroud of the Lightless
[url?]Intuitive Leap[/url]

Recommended LvLing Uniques:



This thread goes through all the details of the build, for gameplay & TLDR guide version check out: Winter Orb Build Guide Video

Before you start posting questions I would recommend checking the video. I am as always available in my stream!

Hope you guys will enjoy the build! Below you can access my other build guides:

Build Guides


Dec 14, 2018 20:19:55 PM

* Reserved


I've reached a point where I have too many build guides to keep up with responding personally on each comment as I've always done on my threads in the past. I will obviously continue doing this but on the youtube videos instead. I hope you guys will understand, sadly I'm not a fulltime streamer and for me to keep build guides like this posted this was an inevitable result!

Dec 14, 2018 20:20:00 PM


(If you see any misstakes or issues, let me know asap please!)

Dec 14, 2018 21:04:27 PM

awesome build, cant wait to try it out!

Dec 14, 2018 22:33:04 PM

joswann1 wrote:
awesome build, cant wait to try it out!

Hope you'll have fun with it! :D

Dec 15, 2018 06:50:32 AM

Can you go directly for Winter Orb if you already have a Tabula waiting in your stash? Or is leveling with Arc smoother?

Dec 16, 2018 00:04:51 AM

Hello thanks for the build, i'll try it ! Is it good for delving ?

I'm looking for a build with a nice speed clear + map boss doable

Dec 16, 2018 16:09:09 PM

Hi, thank you for your work, very nice and detailed build. Any tips how to survive ele reflect maps? Yugul + LL gem isn't enough for surviving.

Dec 16, 2018 20:36:42 PM

Seems like not many damage nodes, will you struggle on bosses?

Dec 16, 2018 22:33:05 PM

LostSoul15 wrote:
Can you go directly for Winter Orb if you already have a Tabula waiting in your stash? Or is leveling with Arc smoother?

With a Tabula it should be fine tbh.

Shinro28 wrote:
Hello thanks for the build, i'll try it ! Is it good for delving ?

I'm looking for a build with a nice speed clear + map boss doable

Not sure how the higher depths will feel with the build, it is designed to be a clearing build so it should by default do very well.

Koshi4ka wrote:
Hi, thank you for your work, very nice and detailed build. Any tips how to survive ele reflect maps? Yugul + LL gem isn't enough for surviving.

Like many if not most builds this build simply should avoid elemental reflect maps.

Ritchey92 wrote:
Seems like not many damage nodes, will you struggle on bosses?

I've had 0 issues with map bosses, the t16 bosses has been somewhat slowish but absolutely no problems in handling.

Shaper was easy as well, gonna run Pale Court & Shaper today on stream to get the footage up to youtube for the build.

Dec 17, 2018 11:45:59 AM
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