[Top 10] Path of Exile Best Builds for Heist

Path of Exile Best Builds for Heist
Join the rogues and pillage your way to the top of the ladder

Heist league has proven itself to be a heavy hitter for sure. With the end approaching, you may be wondering if your character can complete the end game grind and get those challenge rewards.

Hello, Exiles.

If you’re playing the most recent Path of Exile league, Heist, then you know that going on Heist missions can be very risky, but equally rewarding. Low damage builds, or low defense builds will equally struggle in clearing this new mechanic, with low defense being particularly risky for players trying to progress.

If you’re looking for a build to grind out the end of league and hunt some achievements, here are some of the best options. 

10. Impale Cyclone Champion

Spin through enemies and obliterate them on your path to becoming the ultimate Champion.

As you probably already know, Cyclone is a significant contender in Path of Exile and is played by a fair number of players. Of the many variations possible, Impale is easily one of the strongest. For this version, you will use the Impale support gem and take the Champion ascendancy, as the two have the best synergy in addition to Champion’s range of offensive and defensive capabilities. Cyclone works by channelling a continuous spin technique that damages all enemies in its radius, making it a prime candidate to scale with the Impale support gem, which adds extra damaging Impale stacks on hit.

Why Impale Cyclone Champion is Great for Heist:

  • Cyclone is great for clearing low-level enemies and Impale is great for bosses, giving the best of both worlds
  • The build is quite tanky and perfect for handling the damage output of heists 
  • Extremely easy to handle, so anyone can play it, regardless of skill level 
  • Good league starter and end game build 
  • Flexible options to focus on more damage or more defense as needed

Impale Cyclone gameplay and guide. 

9. Toxic Rain Trickster

Infect your enemies with toxic arrows as you dance around them, watching their health wither to nothing. 

Toxic Rain has become extremely popular very quickly, and for good reason. When combined with the Trickster ascendancy, the build becomes an insanely strong force of chaos damage. The ability is straight forward; a bow-based attack skill which unleashes a rain of toxic arrows from the sky above your enemies. Toxic Rain will deal plenty of damage on it’s own, and in most cases will function as a solo-skill build, though it is sometimes combined with Caustic Arrow. This build is perfect for anyone who enjoys a laid-back, distance-fighting playstyle. 

Why Toxic Rain Trickster is Great for Heist:

  • The damage is very widespread making for quick clearing and therefore quick mapping or clearing of heists
  • Chaos damage works as damage over time, so you can hit your enemy and focus on dodging mechanics while the DOT tick keeps going
  • Easy to get high damage (millions) for low cost and even higher damage for high cost
  • Easy to play 
  • Fairly good defensive options from Trickster, especially considering it’s a ranged bow build

Toxic Rain gameplay and Guide 

8. Essence Drain Trickster

Drain the life from foes as you traverse the lands, seeking out the heads of your enemies and perhaps making a pretty penny along the way.

Essence Drain Trickster is a highly played build and holds a similar concept to Toxic Rain DPS wise, with very different execution and playstyle alongside added defensive capability. Essence Drain shoots out a projectile in the direction of your cursor, placing a devastating damaging chaos effect on enemies it touches. From the Trickster ascendancy, you can get energy shield/life on kill, added regen if you killed recently, increased move speed, increased dodge chance, cannot be stunned, and much more, and you will definitely want to pad yourself with these defenses. In order to do damage to bosses, the build typically takes Contagion/Blight or Vaal Blight, as Essence Drain tends to do less single-target damage than ideal; taking one, or a combination of these three will fix this slight gap. If you want to complete endgame content and test your limits, this is a great build to give a whirl. 

Why Essence Drain Trickster is Great for Heist:

  • Incredible sustain from the skill itself (added regen based on damage dealt) and from the Trickster ascendancy; easily one of the tankiest Shadow builds
  • Very unlikely you will get one-shot due to all the defense, and with the heavy hits heists deal this is extremely important
  • Essence Drain clears trash mobs very effectively, and heists are typically high density of standard mobs with few bosses
  • Can pair with other skills to help with boss damage, so the fact that the skill does low on-hit damage but heavy DOT isn’t as big of a problem; you can still boss quickly
  • The heavy damage over time effect allows for you to focus on dodging and learning the mechanics of fights while still dealing fair damage

Essence Drain gameplay and guide

7. Bladefall/Blade Blast Chieftain

Cast an array of Blades from the sky and watch as they fall upon your enemy, sticking into the ground and waiting for you to set off a fiery explosion that lights up every enemy who dares to challenge you. 

Bladefall/Blade Blast is an extremely powerful two-key ability combination and has quickly risen to power in Path of Exile as one of the most enjoyable and viable builds. Taking the Marauder over other classes allows for the player to better prioritize survivability, a benefit that shouldn’t be underestimated in Heist. Chieftain works by converting the damage entirely into fire damage. Bladefall/Blade Blast excels in both clear and single-target damage, and will quickly annihilate most late game bosses. With the tankiness and the damage it offers, this build is sure to take any player deep into end game content.

Why Bladefall/Blade Blast Chieftain is Great for Heist:

  • This is easily the most defensive version of the many Bladefall/Blade Blast build options, which is important in a league with a mechanic as dangerous as Heist
  • The damage does not suffer due to the better defenses like in most builds, and you can still easily clear through general enemies and bosses
  • Extremely safe farming of end game bosses (with the exception of a few who have Elemental reflect) and high level content
  • Satisfying fire explosions, who doesn't like them? 
  • Very fast paced gameplay

Bladefall/Bladeblast gameplay and guide. 

6. Blade Vortex Indigon Pathfinder 

Command icy ethereal blades that surround you, freezing and shattering those they slice through as you attempt to free the land from the grips of evildoers. 

Blade Vortex Indigon Pathfinder was a popular build during the last couple of leagues, and is still being played with almost all of the previous build guides remaining viable with minor adjustments. The Ranger has access to many different cold damage-based skill nodes, and this Blade Vortex build takes full advantage of that, converting 100% of physical damage to cold. Blade Vortex is an area skill that extends from the player damaging all in a radius, and in this case, shattering them. Indigon (a Hubris Circlet, helmet) gives significant added defenses, since using flasks for mana will also apply to life, and a massive damage spike by increasing the cost of your abilities and then giving you bonus damage based on that cost. The build will have no trouble clearing through most end game content both health and damage wise. 

Why Blade Vortex Indigon Pathfinder is Great for Heist: 

  • Fast clearing of maps makes for easy currency farming that can then be put back into the build
  • Easy for new and veteran players alike
  • You can easily take most hits, which is good for end game bosses and heists since higher tier heists deal heavy damage
  • The tankiness and speed allows for easy grinding of heists
  • Shattering enemies is always a plus as it negates any after-death effects 

Blade Vortex gameplay (guide and path of building in description)

5. Ground Slam Impaler

Rear your weapon back and slam it into the ground, causing the earth to spike in answer and impale your enemies. 

Ground Slam Impaler is a rising star and is quickly becoming the go-to build for dealing massive damage in only one hit. The build relies heavily on the skill node Impaler, which applies 4 extra Impale stacks to all enemies hit, as well as Impales all surrounding enemies. The build also uses Shattering Steel to get the Call of Steel ability, which will remove Impales from your enemies and deal extra damage accordingly (this is another two-key combination). It is also common and almost necessary to use Cry skills to boost damage and further increase the likelihood you will one-shot or nearly one-shot not only standard enemies, but also a fair number of major bosses. If you’re looking for a heavy hitter, look no further, Ground Slam Impaler is the build for you.

Why Ground Slam Impaler is Great for Heist:

  • In a meta where you are likely to be one-shot, it’s best to one-shot first
  • Great AOE clear and single-target damage to speed through content
  • Amazing defensive capabilities in case you do miss the one-shot and also happen to get hit
  • Easy to play, rewarding to master, offering a bit of a challenge for those interested, but without the drawback of being too difficult for new players
  • Honestly, it’s just extremely fun and satisfying

Ground Slam gameplay and guide. 

4. Impale Earthshatter Champion

As your weapon hits the ground, the earth answers by rising up in pillars before detonating and sending shards of rock through the flesh of your foes. 

Impale Earthshatter is yet another Impale build, which should tell how popular and strong they are in the current league. Earthshatter has been around a bit longer, and earned a spot over Ground Slam Impaler simply for the fact that it has more support at the current moment, and therefore there are more guides and options available; they are quite comparable in strength and Ground Slam will likely overtake Earthshatter soon. Earthshatter casts, summoning pillars of earth in its radius (up to 15) that are then exploded by a second cast to deal damage. Similar to Ground Slam, you will want to use Cry skills in order to scale your damage up for boss fights; managing them is difficult but rewarding and should make for easy end game content farming.

Why Impale Earthshatter Champion is Great for Heist:

  • Good clear speed without sacrificing single-target
  • Similar to Ground Slam, it’s easy to play, a bit more challenging to master, offering good opportunity to test and expand on your own skills
  • Great defenses to help with heist league, particularly since heist enemies tend to deal physical damage and the build stacks a lot of armor
  • Quick mapping
  • Fairly affordable and easy to craft gear for, just look for physical damage stats

Earthshatter gameplay and guide.

3. Power Siphon Assassin

Slay your enemies by casting bursts of energy that tear through them, bringing about an early death for all who suffer their hits. 

Power Siphon is an attack ability that uses wands to shoot a damaging projectile at your enemies.  Current meta uses intelligence stacking and/or aura stacking as both give significant boosts to defensive and offensive capabilities. Assassin is an extremely damage oriented ascendancy and compliments the power charge-oriented Power Siphon skill by providing significant bonuses both to critical hits and based on critical strikes. The build can easily deal DPS by the millions and will have no problems clearing end game content, though you will need to invest in it to progress. Power Siphon Assassin has earned it a reputation in the community for being a “luxury build,” but investing in it will be more than worth your time and money in the end. If you’re looking for a build to farm maps and heists with, Power Siphon is a great choice. 

Why Power Siphon Assassin is Great for Heist:

  • Power Siphon uses a ranged ability, which helps a lot with heists, as you don’t have to get close to enemies
  • Power charges ensure that you will deal lots of burst damage from critical strikes, so its likely you will one-shot everything up to bosses
  • Quick clear for mapping, so currency farming is fairly easy; as long as you have the money to get it started, it shouldn’t be too hard to get more to pump in
  • Power Siphon comes equipped with Culling Strike, so enemies left with 10% or less health get executed
  • Movement speed for days

Power Siphon gameplay and guide. 

2. Carrion Golemancer 

Watch as the rotting corpse of the Carrion Golem leads your undead army into battle, instilling fear in your foes as it slashes and rips through them with ease. 

Golemancer has become a popular build path on the Witch generally, but no golem build quite stands up against Carrion Golemancer. The Necromancer ascendancy has extremely high damage bonuses, along with nodes that significantly increase survivability for both yourself and your minions. The goal is to summon as many minions aside from your Carrion golems as possible, as Carrion golems deal bonus damage based on how many other minions are summoned to support them and give added damage to non-golem minions; the more you summon, the better off you are. Popular companion choices are Zombies due to their high life, and Spectres due to their outright strength. This build is extremely viable for all levels of gameplay and will do wonderfully in the current league.

Why Carrion Golemancer is Great for Heist: 

  • You get to stand behind a wall of minions that will tank a number of incoming hits for you, and really, what more could you ask for
  • Extremely laid back since minions do most of the work 
  • Scales well throughout all levels; more minions equals more damage, simple, right?
  • Budget friendly with good min-max options
  • Beginner friendly and end game viable. 

Carrion Golem gameplay and guide. 

1. Spectre Necromancer 

With an army of ghastly spectres at your beck and call, you traverse the land dominating all, mercilessly exacting your revenge upon all who dare to anger you. 

Necromancer has been the most popular choice for Witch builds for quite some time now, and makes up a fair percentage of players. It is possible to play a summoner with any Summon skill gem, or any combination thereof, but none are quite as popular currently as Spectres, though Zombies do make a nice contender. Spectre Necromancer will use the Summon Spectre skill gem to raise the undead in the form of a ghostly Spectre. From there, your army will take the reins and do most of the heavy lifting, all you have to do is control them every so often to call them back to heal or redirect their focus (though mostly they are fine on their own). Your focus will be staying alive, which should be no problem at all with the Necromancer ascendancy bonuses to defense and your ability to focus entirely on your positioning, making this build perfect for Heist league. 

Why Spectre Necromancer is Great for Heist: 

  • Similar to Carion Golemancer, you get to stand behind a wall of minions who will help take aggro from enemies
  • Your minions do most of the work, you just have to make sure they stay alive and, if they don’t, replace them 
  • Easy scaling and budget friendly
  • Very versatile and flexible as you can do pure Spectre or combine Spectres with other minions
  • Beginner friendly and end game viable; just a generally well-rounded build

Spectre gameplay and guide.

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