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Last Updated: April 7th 2023

Crucible 3.21

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Learn about the key build info and how to increase damage and defense with your stats and gear for the Poison Blade Vortex Occultist Build.

Key Leveling Notes

Warning: This build is difficult and slow to level, and Patch 3.21 made it slightly worse. If you are a beginner player, it is recommended to play the Poisonous Concoction Pathfinder. The Occultist version eventually has better clear due to Profane Bloom, at the cost of leveling slower and coming online later.

This build levels as Holy Flame Totem and Flame Wall, and will do Library in Act 3 to gain access to Poisonous Concoction. You will use this to level until you gain the cast speed in late game necessary to swap to Blade Vortex.

Note: Selling identified rare items gives you Alteration Shards, while selling them unidentified gives Transmutation Shards.

Campaign Step By Step

Beginner players should follow Enki's Campaign Progression guide.

The levels listed below are based on speedrunning. Always be greater or equal to the levels listed.

Use slider for progression.
Open Poisonous Concoction Tree in new tab and use arrows at the bottom to navigate.
Act 1
Act 1
  • Reach Lioneye's Watch and choose Freezing Pulse as your reward.
  • Complete the quests Mercy Mission and Breaking some Eggs.
    • Talk to Nessa and choose Quicksilver Flask and Summon Phantasm Support. Purchase Holy Flame Totem.
    • Talk to Tarkleigh and grab Flame Wall and Frostblink.
  • Complete the quests Dweller of the Deep and The Caged Brute.
    • Reach Lower Prison and use the Waypoint back to town, then talk to Nessa and grab: Added Lightning Damage Support.
    • Talk to Tarkleigh to grab your Passive Skillpoint after Dweller of the Deep.
  • Go back to Lower Prison, complete the Trial of Ascendancy, and slay Brutus.
  • After killing Brutus, return to town and choose Flame Dash. This replaces Frostblink.
  • Complete the quest The Marooned Mariner and grab the waypoint in Merveil's Caverns.
  • After killing Fairgraves and reaching the Waypoint in Merveil's Caverns, return to town and talk to Bestel for a Passive Skillpoint.
  • Talk to Nessa for Volatile Dead, then complete The Siren's Cadence.
Act 1 Tips
  • Flame Wall deals damage to monsters standing on the wall, while also causing projectiles that pass through the wall to gain extra damage. Cast Holy Flame Totem followed by Flame Wall. Any monster that does not die from this rotation should be finished off with Freezing Pulse.
  • Note that The Way Forward is an Act 1 quest that is only completable in Act 2.
  • Equip a Sapphire Ring for Merveil to mitigate her Cold Damage. Kill her and move onto Act 2!


For informations about what is the Pantheon and how it works, don't hesitate to consult our Pantheon Guide!

For Major Pantheon, select Brine King to gain Immunity to Freeze and Reduction of Chill Effect. This bonus is not baseline and needs to be acquired with a Divine Vessel.

For Minor Pantheon, select Abberath and upgrade it. This grants you defences but most importantly Immunity to Burning Ground.

Alternatively Garukhan grants reduced Effect of Shock, preventing large damage spikes. Ralakesh can be used until you have a good Corrupted Blood cannot be inflicted on you corruption on one of your jewels.

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