Ice Shards Sorcerer Endgame Guide

Last Updated: December 5th 2023

Season 2 - Blood

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Welcome to the Ice Shards Sorcerer Endgame Build Guide. This build transform your Sorcerer into an Ice-based machine gun shooting out Ice Shards at around 1000 Rounds Per Minute. With its great single target DPS and relatively long range, this build can go pretty far in Nightmare Dungeons.

This build can technically be played at range, but in practice it's very reliant on Frost Nova so you have to be melee to a degree. During the Boss fights, however, this is no longer the case, so you are free to run all the way to Narnia and shoot the Boss from there.

The Ice Shards Sorcerer is not very dependent on any specific Legendary Aspects. The Codex of Power versions of Prodigy’s and Piercing Cold are more than enough to make the build work. However, a lot of build's power is locked behind Frost Nova. The build can feel somewhat sluggish until you get enough Cooldown Reduction and ranks in Frost Nova to make it spammable.

In this guide we teach you all you need to know to turn your Sorcerer into a literal machine gun and have a blast doing it. Let's dive into it!

Ice Shard Sorcerer Endgame Setup

This build guide assumes you have a Level 50 Character and finished the Campaign. Level up with our Ice Shards Sorcerer Leveling Guide. If you are looking for a different Sorcerer playstyle, check out all of our Sorcerer Guides

Can Play At Range

High Burst Damage
Good Against Single Targets

❌ Squishy
Can Be Mana-Hungry
Not That Impressive Visually
Cooldown Dependent AoE Clear

Season 2 - Season of Blood

Diablo 4 Season 2 introduces a new questline to hunt down the Shadow Vampire forces of Lord Zir across Sanctuary. With Lilith's blood still residing within our bodies, the infliction put upon us is harnessed throughout our leveling, granting access to new Vampiric Powers. Completing the seasonal questline, partaking in the seasonal Blood Harvest event and collecting Potent Blood are the main ways of obtaining and empowering these abilities. Check out the full Season 2 Guide from Chewingnom to learn more!

How it works

  • There are 22 Vampiric Powers, separated into 2 different types:
    • 15 Minor Vampiric Powers - Require 1 to 3 Pacts to be activated.
    • 7 Major Vampiric Powers - Require 6 Pacts to be activated.
  • There are 3 different types of Pacts:
    • Ferocity Pact have a Crown icon.
    • Divinity Pacts have a Chalice icon.
    • Eternity Pacts have a Skull icon.
  • Pacts can roll only on Armor pieces (Helm, Chest Armor, Gloves, Pants, Boots).
  • Helms & Boots can have up to 3 Pacts, Pants can have up to 4, Chest & Gloves can have up to 5. This gives you 20 Pacts max!
  • You can use Cleansing Acid - All to remove all Pacts from a piece of Armor and place new Standalone Pacts to meet your Powers requirements to activate. Cleansing Acid can be altered at the Alchemists to target 1 of the 3 Pacts only.
  • Once you have equipped the right Pact Armor pieces, you can activate Vampiric Powers in the Sanguine Circle through the character screen. Powers require varying amounts of different types of Pacts, pay attention.
  • You can use Potent Blood acquired from Blood Seekers to upgrade your Vampiric Powers from Level 1 to Level 3.

With this in mind, let's look at the top 5 best Vampiric Powers and how they impact this build:

Best-in-Slot Vampiric Powers

  1. Ravenous (Minor) - Simply provides unholy amounts Attack Speed for free. Great for any non-channeling build.
  2. Metamorphosis (Major) - Great for Mobility and Vampiric Curse application. Also helps us generate Mana with Tibault's Will.
  3. Prey on the Weak (Minor) - In combination with the previous two powers, this makes everything Vulnerable and provides a damage bonus with 100% uptime.
  4. Domination (Minor) - Pretty Straightforward damage boost that can be easily activated with Frost Nova or Blizzard itself.
  5. Infection (Minor) - adds a bit of damage and Posion stack of Tal Rasha's Iridescent Loop.
Sanguine Circle

Alternative Vampiric Powers

  1. Anticipation (Minor) - reduces the cooldown of our Ultimate, which isn't crucial but always nice to have.
  2. Hemomancy (Minor) - This power can be used by any build, but since Sorcerers don't usually stack neither Life nor Physical Damage bonuses, its performance in mediocre.
  3. Accursed Touch (Major) - Great to consistently apply Vampiric Curse to everything.
  4. Metamorphosis (Major) - Great for Mobility early game but doesn't make it to the final setup due to conflict with Esu's Heirloom.

Skill Tree

Active Skills

  • Ice Shards is our main skill. It deals very high single target damage, and with ricochets from Enhanced Ice Shards, Aspect of Piercing Cold, and its own Enchantment it's also pretty decent for AoE.
  • Fire Bolt is only here to be put into an Enchantment Slot.
  • We put 1 point into Frost Bolt because sometimes we use its Enchantment.
  • Teleport is our main mobility skill, which also serves as a CC break.
  • Frost Nova is both a defensive and offensive skill. It keeps us safe by Freezing all enemies in place and also dramatically increases our damage output by making them Vulnerable, not to mention that it activates our Ice Shards Enchantment, which is our main source of AoE damage.
  • Ice Armor gives us a huge Barrier and a bit of Mana regen.
  • Flame Shield provides even more defense, as well as some healing.
  • Deep Freeze is our last active skill; it's used to reset our other cooldowns and sometimes to avoid dangerous attacks.
Final Skill Tree
Ice Shard Sorcerer showcase in tier 50 dungeon

Enchantment Slots

Sorcerers can choose two skills to put into Enchantment Slots, where they provide powerful passive bonuses. Ice Shards Sorcerer uses the following Enchantments:

  • Ice Shards Enchantment is our main source of AoE damage. When we cast Frost Nova, Ice Shards automatically fire at every Frozen enemy. Each of these shards can then ricochet and pierce through multiple enemies and the end result of it all is absolute icy devastation.
  • Fire Bolt Enchantment is a lot less flashy but still very useful. It lets us use various stats such as Damage to Burning Enemies or Damage Reduction from Burning Enemies, as well as Devouring Blaze passive.

Learn more details and how to unlock this class specification in our full Sorcerer Enchantment Slots Guide.

Paragon Board

← Scroll to Level →

Level the Paragon Board by scrolling. Each step optimizes progression.


Glyphs drop from everything once you hit level 50. You can only find each Glyph once so it doesn't take long until you have them all. After finding them, you need to level up your Glyphs by completing Nightmare Dungeons. At level 15 Glyphs increase their radius, which makes it much easier to activate their Additional Bonus.

Placeholder Glyphs

These Glyphs are only used while leveling because some of our endgame Glyphs can't be activated until they reach level 15. Don't level these Glyphs up because you will replace them later.

  • Unleash

Glyph Leveling Priorities

For maximum efficiency, follow the order outlined below. First, level your Glyphs to level 15 and then do a second pass to get them all to 21.

Level 15

  1. Control
  2. Flamefeeder
  3. Reinforced
  4. Destruction
  5. Exploit
  6. Elementalist

Level 21

  1. Destruction
  2. Control
  3. Flamefeeder
  4. Exploit
  5. Reinforced
  6. Elementalist

There are a total of 225 Paragon Points. Starting with level 50 you gain 4 Paragon Points per level, plus 20 from Renown, and 4 from Altars of Lilith.


Ice Shards Sorcerer's gameplay is very straightforward:

  • Walk up or Teleport to enemies and cast Frost Nova.
  • Cast Ice Shards at any enemies who are not immediately destroyed by the Ice Shards Enchantment (e.g. Elites).
  • Use Ice Armor as necessary to protect yourself.
  • Save Flame Shield for when you get hit by Crowd Control, or when the situation gets really dire.
  • Deep Freeze is only used in two situations. When all your skills are on cooldown you can quickly double tap Deep Freeze to reset them. The second usage is for defense when you see a big hit coming and don't have enough time to get out of the way.

Resource & Cooldown Management

This build can be quite Mana-hungry, as we constantly spam Ice Shards with huge Attack Speed boost we get from Ravenous.

Lucky Hit Procs

Ice Shards have a pretty high Lucky Hit Chance, especially in multi-target situations where we get ricochets from Enhanced Ice Shards and pierces Aspect of Piercing Cold. There are 3 different Lucky Hit effects that help with our Mana:

  • Avalanche plus Aspect of Frozen Memories
  • Frigid Breeze
  • "Lucky Hit: Chance to Regain Resource" rolls on Ancestral Gloves and Focuses

Unfortunately, during Boss fights, these Lucky Hits are a lot less effective, so we have to rely on other things.

Prodigy’s Resource Aspect

This Aspect is very useful in the early game, as we have so many skills with a Cooldown, each giving us some Mana when activated. To make sure that you don't run out of Mana during the Boss fight, follow these tips:

  • Always start the fight by casting Ice Shards once or twice before using your other skills, so that the Mana is not wasted
  • Don't use your Cooldowns all at once for the same reason

Prodigy’s Aspect is available in the Codex of Power, but you can also find a much more powerful version of it randomly. Important: This Aspect is incredibly rare, so if you find a well rolled one, save it until you have a good item (Ancestral Ring with at least 3 out of 4 optimal stats). It's not uncommon to get all the way to level 100 without ever seeing this Aspect.

Tibault's Will

With this Unique item we can generate quite a lot of Mana because Teleport, Flame Shield, and Deep Freeze can all make us Unstoppable. On top of that, in Season of Blood we get Metamorphosis power which lets us proc this item every time we Evade.

Stats on Gear

And finally we come to the real way of solving all our Mana problems: just find good gear. Easier said than done but this is what we have to do. There are 5 different stats we are looking for:

  • Cooldown Reduction (rolls on Helmet, Amulet, Focus)
    The most important stat for any Sorcerer build, it's also technically a Mana stat as long as we use Prodigy’s. Get all 3 possible rolls as your number one priority.
  • Mana Cost Reduction (rolls on Amulet, Boots, Focus)
    The roll on the Amulet is significantly higher than the other 2 so you always want to get it.
  • Resource Generation (rolls on Ancestral Rings and Focus)
    This stat has the same function as Mana Cost Reduction but it's slightly stronger if you have to choose between the two.
  • Lucky Hit: Chance to Regain Primary Resource (rolls on Ancestral Gloves and Focus)
    This roll is very useful but we only want one of them. If you get both rolls, then the proc will give you too much Mana and most of it will be wasted.
  • Maximum Mana (rolls on Helmet and Rings)
    This stat is but not mandatory. You get enough Mana from just the Helmet roll and Paragon, but the Helmet roll can be skipped.
  • Lucky Hit Chance (rolls on Gloves, Helmet, Focus, Rings, Amulet, Wands)
    This is the weakest of the Mana-related stats, we only pick it up when it doesn't conflict with anything else: Helmet, implicit stat on a Wand, and Gloves (if you already have Chance to Regain Resource on the Focus).

Endgame Gear & Skill Progression

When you start diving into the Endgame, you don't have all the tools available to achieve the final build versions. Let us guide you through different progression points to give you a smooth transition from our Leveling Guides to the final build version.

Progression Goals

Many of your Skill choices depend on what Legendary Aspects and Unique items are available to you. While we can guarantee, that everyone has access to the same Codex of Power Aspects, the progression might be different for everyone!

  1. Unlock the following Aspects in your Codex of Power:
  2. Find the following Legendary Aspects by farming in Dungeons, Nightmare Dungeons, Helltides, through the Tree of Whispers, or gambling with Obols:
    • Conceited: Gamble Focuses
    • Fortune: Gamble Helmets or Chests
    • Frozen Memories: Gamble Focuses
  3. Find the following Unique items by farming in Dungeons, Nightmare Dungeons, Helltides.
    Note: You cannot gamble Unique items with Obols!
    • Tibault's Will
    • Godslayer Crown
    • Esu's Heirloom
    • Raiment of the Infinite
    • Tal Rasha's Iridescent Loop

Learn more details and how to farm Legendary Aspects and Uniques in our General Farming Guide.

Progression Setups

Early Endgame
Late Endgame

Once you have completed the leveling guide, only the Codex of Power Aspects are guaranteed. With this setup you can farm the Legendary Aspects and Unique items you need for the next progression point.


  • Control goes on the amulet because at this stage you have neither the Mana pool nor Crit Damage to make Elementalist's good.
  • Prodigy’s is a Resource Aspect and can only be placed on Rings.
  • Control, Storm Swell, Piercing Cold, and Elementalist's take up 4 out of 5 remaining offensive slots. It's generally best to leave your weapon without an Aspect because it's replaced often.
  • Bounding Conduit can only be imprinted on Boots.
  • Put Disobedience on the Pants or Chest.
  • Shared Misery and Snowveiled Aspect go on Helmet and Chest.

At this point resources are scarce, so only upgrade items that have Mana Cost Reduction or Cooldown Reduction rolls on them.

Codex-only Gear


At low levels we Struggle with Mana, so replace Potent Warding with Precision Magic.

Starter Skill Tree

Build Scaling & Stat Priorities

The answer to many questions can be found in the following section.

Build Scaling

Learn all you need to know about how to scale this build in the endgame.

  • Cooldown Reduction (CDR). This the most important stat for any Sorcerer build. What good are your skills if you can't use them because they are on cooldown? In purely offensive terms CDR gives us the following:
    • More uptime on Vulnerable and Freeze from Frost Nova (about 3x damage buff against single targets and about 9001x in AoE)
    • More uptime on Barrier from Ice Armor or Protection activating Conceited and Storm Swell (1.625x damage buff)
  • Mana. We continue to chase our philosophy of being able to use skills = good. The next skill we want to use is Ice Shards, which has a Mana cost, instead of a Cooldown. We need to stack enough Mana Cost Reduction, Resource Generation, and Lucky Hit Chance (to proc Frigid Breeze) in order to spam Ice Shards freely. Maximum Mana is also a very important stat, as it lets us utilize Elementalist's Aspect better.
  • Offensive Stats. We want all the normal offensive stats: Weapon Damage, Ice Shards Ranks, Critical Strike Chance, Attack Speed, Cold Damage, Intelligence, and all kinds of Additive Damage, in that order of priority. Attack Speed can be a double edged sword, as it also increases your Mana consumption, so it's better to focus on other stats until your Mana is completely figured out.

Stat Priorities & Gear Options

There are many stats and status effects that generate on gear, but many are not important for your build. Some stats may block others from rolling or only appear on certain gear slots. See below for a per slot priority list in the table.

Put the following Gems into your gear:

  • Armor: Royal Rubies
  • Jewelry: Royal Skulls
  • Weapons: Royal Emeralds

This build benefits a lot from the following Consumables:

  • Elixirs: Heady Assault Elixir, Heady Precision Elixir, Iron Skin Elixir
  • Incense: Song of the Mountain, Sage's Whisper

Refer to the table below to see the best rolls for every slot ranked in order of importance:

Weaponone of:
Piercing Cold
Storm Swell
Frozen Memories
Weapon Type: Wand
1. High Damage per Second
2. Intelligence
3. All Stats
4. Core Skill Damage
5. Critical Strike Damage
6. Damage to Close Enemies
Off-Handone of:
Piercing Cold
Storm Swell
Frozen Memories
1. Cooldown Reduction
2. High Damage per Second
3. Resource Generation
4. Mana Cost Reduction
5. Critical Strike Chance
6. Lucky Hit: Chance to Regain Resource
(Best in Slot)
Godslayer Crown1. Cooldown Reduction
2. Maximum Life
3. Crowd Control Duration
4. Damage
Fortune1. Cooldown Reduction
2. Maximum Mana
3. % Total Armor
4. Lucky Hit Chance while Barrier
5. Maximum Life
6. Crowd Control Duration
7. Intelligence
(Best in Slot)
Raiment of the Infinite1. Intelligence
2. Damage to Close Enemies
3. Damage to Stunned Enemies
4. Ranks to Glass Cannon
Snowveiled Aspect1. % Total Armor
2. Damage Reduction against Burning Enemies
3. Damage Reduction against Distant Enemies
4. Damage Reduction against Close Enemies
5. Damage Reduction
6. Maximum Life
7. Intelligence
Glovesone of:
Piercing Cold
Storm Swell
Frozen Memories
1. Ranks to Ice Shards
2. Critical Strike Chance
3. Attack Speed
4. Lucky Hit: Chance to Regain Resource
5. Lucky Hit Chance
6. Intelligence
(Best in Slot)
Tibault's Will1. Damage Reduction against Close Enemies
2. Maximum Resource
3. Damage
4. Potion Capacity
Disobedience1. % Total Armor
2. Damage Reduction against Burning Enemies
3. Damage Reduction against Distant Enemies
4. Damage Reduction against Close Enemies
5. Damage Reduction
6. Maximum Life
7. Intelligence
(Best in Slot)
Esu's Heirloom1. Movement Speed
2. Critical Strike Damage
3. Shrine Buff Duration
4. Movement Speed on Elite Kill
Bounding Conduit
Shared Misery
1. Ranks to Frost Nova
2. Mana Cost Reduction
3. Movement Speed
4. Implicit: +Max Evade Charges
5. Ranks to Teleport
6. Intelligence
1. Cooldown Reduction
2. Mana Cost Reduction
3. Movement Speed
4. Ranks to Devouring Blaze
5. Ranks to Defensive Skills
6. Damage Reduction from Burning Enemies
Ringstwo of:
Piercing Cold
Storm Swell
Frozen Memories
1. Resource Generation
2. Critical Strike Chance
3. Cold Damage
4. Maximum Life
5. Critical Strike Damage

Hardcore Adjustments

Hardcore requires you to build into more defenses. Here are some tips to successfully navigate this build through potentially dangerous situations:

  • Focus more on Defensive rolls on your gear, such as Total Armor on the Amulet, or Maximum Life on Rings.
  • Use Royal Topazes in armor instead or Royal Rubies to prevent worst case scenarios.
  • Drop Tibault's Will for defensive Pants with Everliving Aspect.
  • If you insist on using Flame Shield Enhantment, your only real option is to drop Ice Shards Enchantment because without Burning you will become a lot squishier, which is not optimal for hardcore.

Check out our dedicated in-depth guide to learn more survival tricks in Hardcore.

Level 100 Endgame Variants

You can optimize your build further for certain endgame activities, such as Speedfarming, Nightmare Dungeon Pushing, etc. Let's take a look at the changes you need to make to achieve the best results in them.

Nightmare Dungeon Push
Pinnacle Boss
Abattoir of Zir

The Speedfarming setup makes you more efficient in farming the Open World, Helltide zones, Tree of Whispers, regular Dungeons, and Nightmare Dungeons below Tier 45. Ice Shards Sorcerer already kills everything very fast and to make it great at speedfarming we just need to add mobility


There are only 2 small changes to our gear:

  • Use Boots with Bounding Conduit and +Max Evade Charges implicit roll
  • Use Amulet with Ranks to Defensive Skills (third most important roll after CDR and Movement Speed).

Enchantment Slots

We replace Fire Bolt with Teleport. Without Burning we lose quite a bit of damage, but it's not really necessary to kill the monsters outside of Nightmare Dungeons.

Vampiric Powers

We use Accursed Touch instead of Metamorphosis because the latter disables Teleport Enchantment.

Speedfarming Gear

Skill Tree

Since we no longer have room for Fire Bolt Enchantment, we don't need Devouring Blaze.

  • Remove Devouring Blaze and Inner Flames
  • Max out Teleport


Just Teleport and cast Frost Nova, the Ice Shards will take care of the rest. Try to hit at least 3 enemies with each Frost Nova to not lose out on CDR from Enhanced Frost Nova. You only need to cast Ice Shards manually when fighting Bosses or lone Elites.

Paragon Board & Glyphs

Use Territorial Glyph in place of Flamefeeder.

Speedfarming Skill Tree

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Once a guide is released, many players have questions on why and how we are approaching certain choices. In this section you can find the answers to the questions that have been asked the most.

Why don't you use Imbiber?

What about Iceheart Brais and Frostburn?


Learn all you need to know about how to scale this build in the endgame.

Ice Shards

Video Guide

Hungry for more Guides?


The Ice Shards Sorcerer is a robust and powerful build, capable of dealing great single target damage and also able to demolish hordes of enemies with Shatter. The long range and high upfront damage of Ice Shards make this build very smooth and easy to play.

  • Stack Cooldown Reduction, Mana Cost Reduction, and Resource Generation to get your Shatter back, and also acquire Burning synergies.
  • Despite appearances, Frost Nova is the strongest offensive skill on our bar. A single use of it will usually clear the entire screen!
  • Ice Armor and Flame Shield will keep you alive even in the most difficult battles.


Written by Northwar
Reviewed by Chewingnom

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