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Ballista Falconer

Last Updated: July 12th 2024

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Patch 1.1

The Ballista Falconer lays down her Ballista and unleashes a constant flow of Ballista Bolts to annihilate any opposition. Buffed by your trusted Falcon through Aerial Assault, you swiftly dispose of any threats.

Ballista serves as your main source of Damage, with short bursts supported by Falconry. The Ballista Falconer has incredible mobility and utility thanks to Aerial Assault, Smoke Bomb, Falconry and Decoy.

This setup doesn’t require any Uniques to function, but it can take advantage of many. Items such as Uethrin's Stand, Boneclamor Barbute, Death Rattle, Melvern's Writ, The Kestrel, Jungle Queen's Chaps of Holding, Phantom Grip and Foot of the Mountain provide both great offensive and defensive stats.

The Ballista Falconer is an amazing build capable of defeating all content in the game. Additionally, it has ZHP variants, both Turret-Style and Explosive, that can reach the limits of the game, at the cost of being extremely glass cannon. If you are looking for a fast, turret defense style build that performs well and can fill the screen with Ballista Bolts, this setup is perfect for you! Welcome to the Ballista Falconer!

End Game Gear Planner - Click To Open in LEPlanner

This article assumes you have a Level 70 Character.
Reach Level 70 with our Falconer Leveling Guide.
If you are looking for a different playstyle, check all our Build Guides!

Pros
  • Auto Targeting
  • Fast Clear Speed
  • Incredible Range
  • Great Damage Scaling
Cons
  • Can't Facetank
  • Mana Management
  • Needs Gear to Crit Cap
  • Defensive Tools Require Timing

Skills

Ballista

Ballista is your main damage dealing ability. With Perfect Aim, Shared Enhancements and Contaminating Shots, your own stats and ailment chance also apply to your Ballistae. Efficient Construction is essential to lower the skill's Mana Cost. Elixir of Construction and Care Package provides insane Damage and Potion sustain, which is excellent with Experimental Mana on Potion Use.

Click the Nodes at the bottom to see Skill Tree Progression

Alternate Skills & Tips

Passives

Passives provide powerful effects that dictate the playstyle of a Class and its Masteries. Remember that you can allocate Passives on the first half of all Masteries regardless of the one you chose.

  1. Grab the Dexterity and Dexterity scaling Nodes for the many stats and multipliers you are scaling with it.
  2. Finesse Them provides a great way to further scale your Damage and provides sustain.
  3. Tailwind and Evasion provide great Damage Reduction when moving.
  4. Needle Like Precision gives a lot of Crit Chance and Critical Strike Multiplier.
  5. Tactician and Swift Assassin provides a high amount of Flat Damage for Ballista.
  6. Poise and Cloak of Shadows are great ways to scale Glancing Blow Chance.
  7. Allocate Coordinated Fade to activate when you use Ballista. In this setup, 2 points are allocated. This means Ballista should be the second Skill on your Action Bar, from left to right.
Ballista Falconer End Game Gear Planner

Make sure to complete the Campaign to get all your Passive Points.

Gameplay

Summon Ballistae from a safe distance and Buff them with Aerial Assault. Make sure you are familiar with enemy mechanics to know when to use your Support Skills to stay alive. Pay attention to their telegraphed attacks!

Skill Usage/Rotation

  • Use a potion regularly to benefit from Elixir of Construction.
  • Summon Ballistae at a sustainable pace for your current Mana Regen.
  • Use Aerial Assault to Buff the Ballistae
  • Use Smoke Bomb to move around the map and avoid telegraphed attacks. Make use of its Invulnerability window and its Silver Shroud. With Experimental Minions Transported with Traversal Skills on your Boots, a number of them are teleported to you as you land.
  • Employ Falcon Strikes as Crowd Control and to Cull enemies when needed.
  • Throw Decoy when in danger to give yourself some breathing room.
  • Make use of Smoke Bomb as an extra Movement Skill when needed, and to avoid telegraphed attacks. Make use of its Invulnerability window and its Silver Shroud!

Mapping

  • Move quickly with Smoke Bomb and lay down Ballistae while moving to the objective.
  • Use Decoy at the objective to ensure a safe disposal of any threat.

Bossing

  • Take advantage of all your Defensive and Offensive Buffs and keep them active.
  • Use Decoy to distract the Boss. Take advantage of this window to reposition or deal damage.
  • Avoid telegraphed attack and reposition with Smoke Bomb.
  • Use Falcon Strikes to Cull when the Boss is low enough.

Advanced Skill Tips

Learn more about how to maximize your gameplay in the Build Scaling section of this guide.

Gear

Gearing in Last Epoch revolves around finding Items and then using the powerful Crafting System to enhance them. As long as an Item has Forging Potential left, players can upgrade or modify their Affixes up to Tier 5. However, the powerful Exalted Tier Affixes are drop only and can't be modified by players.

Using the correct Item Bases allows you to make use of their amazing Implicits. This is fundamental for gearing efficiently. Combine Implicits, Passives, Idols and Blessings to cap your Resistances and other defensive layers, while fitting as much Health related Affixes into your gear as possible. Plan ahead for your next upgrades and consider the final Blessings of your build while gearing. Finish up by farming Uniques with Legendary Potential and Sealing Affixes into Exalted Items to unleash all of your build's power!

Here are the Stat Goals for this build:

  • Capped Resistances
  • Capped Endurance
  • 50% - 100% Glancing Blow Chance
  • 200%+ Armor Shred Chance
  • 2000+ Health
  • 30%+ Armour
  • 100% Ballista Critical Strike Chance
  • 150%+ Ballista Critical Strike Multiplier
  • 120+ Dexterity
  • 60+ Intelligence
  • 30% - 50%+ Movement Speed

Gear Progression

Starting Gear
Advanced Gear
End Game Gear
Aspirational Gear
ZHP Variants

Milestone 1
Aim for good Item Bases with four valuable T5 Affixes. The defensive rolls on T5 Suffixes are very important at this stage as they can easily cap all your Resistances when combined with Item Implicits, Idols, Blessings or Passives.

Milestone 2
Make sure your Critical Strike Avoidance is capped. Especially on this build, it also provides Damage from the Falconer Passive Finesse Them. Remember that Woven Flesh is always an option early on. Farm this by killing the Abomination in the Fall of the Outcast Monolith Timeline.

Milestone 3
Get an additional Ballista with Max Ballista and Increased Ballista Attack Speed as soon as possible.

Milestone 4
Fit as much Health into your gear as possible. Hybrid Health and %Health are extremely valuable, but can be hard to find early on. Use regular flat Health until you find them.

Starting Gear - Click To Open in LEPlanner

Milestone 5
Aim for T5 Level of Ballista on your Relic to invest extra Points into its Tree. It provides a significant damage increase.

Milestone 6
While you look for this basic set of gear, start farming your Empowered Blessings and look for any Idols which help you cap all your Resistances or increase your Damage output. Keep an eye out for Adorned Majasan Idol with Shared Critical Strike Multiplier Prefix and Bow Critical Strike Chance or Increased Armour Shred Effect Suffix. Your goal is to have items with 4 valuable T5 Affixes, also known as T20.

Milestone 1
Upgrade your T20 set up with Exalted items, high value Sealed Affixes or ideally both. Obtain the Affixes included in the Planner, but prioritize the indicated Item Bases for their Implicits. Make sure to Seal highly efficient low tier Affixes.

Milestone 2
When all your core Defenses are covered, start working on your Damage. Get Intelligence and Dexterity to increase your DPS drastically. Mana Regeneration also helps a lot as Ballista has a high Mana Cost.

Milestone 3
Get Uethrin's Stand for the 2 extra Ballista.

Milestone 4
Phantom Grip provides a massive amount of Critical Strike Chance and also Levels of Minion Skills. It is a natural choice for the build.

Milestone 5
Boneclamor Barbute provides excellent Offensive and Defensive stats for the build. Its main apeal is not the Ward per Second, but the Attributes and stats it provides. When max rolled, Dexterity and Intelligence are both equivalent to T6 Affixes.

Advanced Gear - Click To Open in LEPlanner

Milestone 6
Death Rattle and Melvern's Writ are great Offensive Items for Minions, get them next. Only use Melvern's Writ if you manage to get at least Level of Ballista on it as a Legendary.

Milestone 7
As you finish up your Empowered Blessings keep a decent Health pool, capped Resistances, Endurance and Critical Strike Avoidance.

Milestone 1
Continue upgrading your gear with T7 Exalted items and begin farming all your Uniques with Legendary Potential. Look for Nemesis encounters in Echoes to add Legendary Potential or Legendary Affixes to any Unique with the Egg of the Forgotten.

Milestone 2
Farm Foot of the Mountain in the Lightless Arbor Dungeon from The Mountain Beneath Boss. Aside from Movement Speed, Experimental Minions Transported with Traversal Skills is nice to get on the Boots, be on the lookout for Exiled Mages inside Echos to find Experimental Items!

Milestone 3
The Kestrel is useful for the extra Skill Level it provides. Only use it if you manage to get at least Max Ballista and Increased Ballista Attack Speed on it as a Legendary.

Milestone 4
Jungle Queen's Chaps of Holding is a great addition to the build because, providing excellent stats to scale Ballista and giving you 16 potion slots!

End Game Gear - Click To Open in LEPlanner

Milestone 5
Keep farming the build's Unique Items with at least one Legendary Potential.

Milestone 1
Keep upgrading your gear with Exalted Items with Sealed Affixes. Get every stat in the right place and on the correct Item Base. Min/Maxing your gear in Last Epoch can be pushed to the extreme as Items with multiple Exalted Affixes are technically possible.

Milestone 2
Get as close to perfect rolls for all your Empowered Blessings and find all your desired Idols with the best in slot Prefixes and Suffixes.

Milestone 3
Arrowguard is a great Defensive option for the build. It enables you to get up to 100% Glancing Blow Chance.

Milestone 4
The build scales both Offensively and Defensively with Dexterity. Blood Roost is great if you manage to obtain one with high Dexterity and multiple LP.

Milestone 5
Keep farming until you get the maximum Legendary Potential you can find on all of your Uniques.

Aspirational Gear - Click To Open in LEPlanner

Milestone 6
Feel free to experiment with any crazy Unique, Legendary or Experimental Items that you might craft, trade or find! The possibilities are endless! Good luck with the chase!

These variants are all about Damage, strictly relying on Silver Shrouds for Defense. As long as you have one up, the next hit you take is Dodged instead. Smoke Bomb gives you Silver Shrouds, alongside Coordinated Fade. These variants deal insanely more Damage.

The Gear, Skills, and Passives are slightly changed from the Regular Variants. Click on the planner to the right to open it in the LEPlanner and change your Skills and Passives accordingly.

The regular ZHP Variant has the turret playstyle, insane range and auto targeting. The ZHP Explosive Variant is a point and click playstyle, dealing damage in a wide area. The latter also requires quite a bit more gear for smooth gameplay, since you want a lot of Mana Regen to spam Ballista.

These Variants are meant for a very specific playstyle which requires very careful gameplay. In the proper hands, they are used to push very high levels of Corruption in Softcore. If you get hit, you will die. Use at your own risk.

ZHP Ballista Variant
Investing only into Damage means that you get to use items such as Mourningfrost and Zeurial's Hunt. Fingers of the Phantom Mire is a great addition, providing Swiftness and is easy to get with multiple Legendary Potential.

ZHP Explosive Ballista Variant
You need to get a lot of Mana Regeneration to be able to spam Ballista comfortably. Get as much as you can and use Urzil's Pride with as much Lightning Resistance as possible on gear.

Get as much Critical Strike Avoidance to increase your Ballistae's Critical Strike Multiplier via the Falconer PassiveFinesse Them. Apogee of Frozen Light are the Weapons of choice, granting extra More Multipliers to Chilled enemies and also synergizing with Mourningfrost's added Cold Damage.

Stack as much Dexterity as possible, mainly to get the biggest Damage Multiplier from Armed Construction.

Flight of the First is also a good option, since using Ballista grants you Ancient Flight, therefore 100% Critical Strike Avoidance. If you can't get a hold of Apogee of Frozen Light Swords, use Flight of the First instead.

ZHP Variant - Click To Open in LEPlanner
ZHP Explosive Variant - Click To Open in LEPlanner

Learn the basics for crafting gear with our Beginner Crafting Guide.
Check our Unique Item & Set Farming Guide and learn how to get them!
Want to know more about Legendary Items? Check our Legendary Guide!

Blessings

Completing a Timeline in the Monolith of Fate lets you choose one of several randomized Blessings from its unique pool. Their benefits are permanent and persist even outside of the Monolith of Fate.

Empowered Blessings are a fundamental part of all builds, so getting the correct ones for each is key.

The sooner you reach Empowered Monolith, the faster you can start farming your desired Blessings!

End Game Blessings
Normal Blessings
Empowered Combat Blessings
Empowered Drop Rate Blessings

Normal Blessings are not important as they are eventually replaced by Empowered Blessings. However they can still be a great source of Resistances, Critical Strike Avoidance or Life Leech for your build early on.

Pick up these Normal Blessings on your way to Empowered:

  • Echo of Solarum
  • Bastion of Divinity
  • Survival of Might
  • Persistance of Will
  • Protection of Heorot
  • Resolve of Grael
  • Heart of the Caldera
  • Embers of Immortality

Note: Don't target farm Normal Blessings. Get to Empowered Monolith as fast as you can.

Reaching Empowered Monolith unlocks all the level 100 Timelines and the ability to farm Empowered Blessings. Unlike Normal Blessings, these need to be farmed until you get the desired ones for your build. It is extremely important to get this set up as fast as possible to free up affix slots on your gear. Remember, the more value you get from your Blessings, the easier it is to craft efficient gear!

These are the core Combat Empowered Blessings for this build:

  • Start with Grand Echo of Solarum for the Void Resistance.
  • Farm Grand Persistance of Will for the Poison Resistance.
  • Pick Grand Heart of the Caldera for the Fire Resistance.
  • Grab Grand Bastion of Divinity for the Lightning Resistance.
  • Finish up by getting Grand Fury of the North for the damage it provides.

These Empowered Blessings are flexible and depend on your current needs and goals.

These are valuable Empowered Drop Rate Blessings for this build:

  • Grand Mark of Agony is valuable to help you find Adorned Majasan Idol with Shared Critical Strike Multiplier Prefix and Bow Critical Strike Chance or Increased Armour Shred Effect Suffix.
  • Once you find all your Idols, you can switch to the Grand Winds of Fortune and focus on Uniques, or Grand Scales of Greed for Gold.
  • Grand Apex of Fortune helps you find more Quivers for Arrowguard.
  • Grand Vigilance of the Damned helps you find more Bows for Uethrin's Stand.

Learn how to farm Blessings fast with our Advanced Monolith Strategies.

Idols

Idols grant your Ballista Falconer bonuses when equipped in the dedicated Idol Container. Unlock all the slots of your Idol Container by completing the Campaign and some of its Side Quests. Remember that some Idols are Class specific and you won't be able to equip them with other non-compatible Classes.

These are the Idols recommended for this build:

  • Use 4 Adorned Majasan Idol with Shared Critical Strike Multiplier Prefix and Bow Critical Strike Chance or Increased Armour Shred Effect Suffix.
  • Complete your setup with a situational mix of Idols to cap your Resistances. You might need extra Resistances out of your Idols early on, so keep an eye for anything useful until you get your final setup.
Ballista Falconer End Game Idols

Other useful Idol Affixes

Make sure to complete the Campaign to get all your Idol Slots.
Learn how to be efficient with Idols with our Advanced Idols Setups Guide.

Build Scaling

The Ballista Falconer summons multiple Ballistae and Buffs them with Aerial Assault. It primarily uses Dexterity and Intelligence for lots of its scaling. The build mainly deals Physical Minion Damage and aims to reach 100% Critical Strike Chance with Ballista. This build also has decent survivability thanks to the defensive layers it can take advantage of.

Damage
Defense
  • Minion Flat Damage: You want to get as much Flat Damage as possible. Tactician and Minion Melee and Bow Damage are your main sources.
  • Bow Flat Damage: Any amount you can get partially applies to Ballista thanks to Shared Enhancements.
  • Intelligence: This stat scales Ballista thanks to Tactician from Aerial Assault.
  • % Minion Damage: Any increase to Minion Damage is welcomed.
  • % Increased Damage: Ballista benefits from this stat, thanks to Shared Enhancements.
  • Penetration: Penetration subtracts from resistances, causing a source of damage to deal more damage. You can get it on your Weapon with Physical Penetration and Minion Physical Penetration.
  • Mana Regen: The more you have, the more you can freely cast the high Mana Cost Ballistae.
  • Chance To Shred Armour on Hit: Each stack of this Ailment reduces enemy Armour by 100 for 4 seconds and stacks infinitely. Enemies have 0 Armour by default and it can go into the negatives. At -1000 Armour a target takes 23.7% increased Physical Damage, while at -4000 Armour it takes 57.2%. With the amount of hits the build has, the stacks ramp up quickly. Contaminating Shots is the key node for Ballista to share your own Ailment Chance stats.
  • Dexterity: Each point gives Ballista 1% Increased Attack Speed and 4% Increased Damage.
  • (Minion) Critical Strike Chance: Perfect Aim makes your Ballistae scale with your own Crit stats. Added Critical Strike Chance from Uethrin's Stand, Melvern's Writ, Sharpened Tips, Phantom Grip and Handler, in combination with Needle Like Precision provide the bulk of the stats needed to reach 100% Critical Strike Chance.
  • (Minion) Critical Strike Multiplier: Increases the Damage your Minion's Crits deal. Death Rattle, Critical Strike Multiplier and Needle Like Precision provide a lot of it.
  • Critical Strike Avoidance: Thanks to Finesse Them, you can convert it into Critical Strike Multiplier. Build as much as you can on your gear.
  • Level of Ballista: Get this Affix on your Relic to invest more points into its Tree.
  • Physical Shred: Grand Fury of the North provides this Ailment chance. At the maximum amount of 10 stacks, it reduces enemies Physical Resistance by 50%, but is 60% less effective against Bosses.
  • Movement Speed: Reduces the reaction time needed to avoid attacks. The faster you move, the faster you can get out of danger!
  • Glancing Blows: You take 35% less damage from Hits with Glancing Blows. You want to reach at least 50%, which will be doubled by Poise.
  • Dusk Shrouds: Each grants 5% Glancing Blow Chance and 50 Dodge Rating. Rapid Concealment in Smoke Bomb provide them.
  • Silver Shrouds: As long as you have one up, the next hit you take is Dodged instead. You also gain 100 Ward per Silver Shroud once they proc to Dodge the incoming attack. Allocate points into Coordinated Fade to activate when you use your Ballista for an easy way to get uptime on Silver Shrouds.
  • Dodge: Dexterity, Dodge, %Dodge and the extra Dodge provided by Dusk Shrouds, allow you to reach high Dodge Chance, on top of Silver Shrouds.
  • Smoke Bomb: This Skill gives immunity frames while it's used thanks to the Escape Tactics node. Time this Skill properly to avoid incoming damage or potential 1 shots. In this setup, it also provides Dusk Shrouds and Cleanses Ailments.
  • Armour Mitigation: Just with the implicit Armour from your gear and Stymphalian Feathers, your Armour easily reaches 25%+ Mitigation.
  • Decoy: This Skill Taunts enemies. While Taunted, enemies focus the Decoy instead of attacking you. It is an extremely powerful tool to give you some breathing room.
  • Health: Any extra Health is welcomed.
  • Endurance: A defensive mechanic that allows you to take up to 60% less Damage while below a certain Health threshold. Your base Endurance Threshold is 20% of your total Health.
  • Health on Crit: Finesse Them is your main way of sustaining your Health pool. Ballista can deal an absurd amount of Hits when multiple are summoned, refilling your Health pool easily.
  • Evasion & Tailwind: The Damage Reduction while moving is great while escaping from threats.
  • Crimson Shroud: Stacks up to 3 times, providing less Damage Over Time Taken. Gained from Crimson Skies.
  • Slow/Chill: Greatly reduce the Action and Movement Speed of your enemies.
  • Frailty: This Ailment reduces the Damage dealt by enemies by 6% for 4 seconds. Stacks 3 times.

Our Damage Explained Article covers all you need to know to scale Damage.
Learn all you need to know to scale Defense with our Defense Explained Article.

Loot Filter

Loot Filters are critical in Last Epoch. Making sure you highlight all the related valuable Item Bases, Affixes, Uniques and Idols is crucial to ensure your character's progression. Click on the Generate Loot Filter button down below then use the Paste Clipboard Contents button in-game to import it!

Here is the Endgame Loot Filter for this build:

Learn how to load and make Filters with our Loot Filter Guide.

Video Guide

Summary

The Ballista Falconer summons many Ballistae and Buffs them with Tactician from Aerial Assault. This Falconer is amazing at completing all the content in the game.

  • Summon many Ballistae and move with them, thanks to Experimental Minions Transported with Traversal Skills .
  • Stack as much Dexterity and Intelligence as you can to increase their Damage.
  • Get a comfortable amount of Mana Regeneration to freely summon Ballistae.
  • Your Crit stats apply to Ballista.
  • Your Damage stats also apply to Ballista, but at a reduced % Effectiveness.
  • ZHP Variants are available to deal insane amounts of Damage.
  • While they are not mandatory, Uniques Items like Uethrin's Stand, The Kestrel, Boneclamor Barbute, Death Rattle, Arrowguard, Melvern's Writ, Jungle Queen's Chaps of Holding, Foot of the Mountain, Blood Roost and Phantom Grip are great for unleashing this build's potential.

Credits

Written by BinaQc
Reviewed by Lizard_IRL, Tenkiei, Volca

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