[Guide] Juicy Balls of Fire (Molten Strike Chieftain, beginner friendly, SSF viable, mapfarmer)

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Posts: 48
Joined: Wed Apr 26, 2017 9:21 am

Fri Dec 22, 2017 6:41 am

Hi folks!

After playing PoE since open Beta and coming up with usually 3-5 builds per season, I finally decided to put up a guide for one of my builds cause it feels like fun and currently is doing great in Maps up to Tier 10 in level 79 and even beat the first Elder Guardians on a 4 link setup with nearly SSF-gear.


I'm not a native speaker. If I use incorrect terms or phrases and something isn't understandable, please don't hesitate to tell me, I will then correct it.

General Build Idea

I always liked melee builds with a secondary effect. Molten Strike (further referred to as MS) is one of my all-time favorites, because it is so flexible. With the introduction of the new Ancestral Call Support Gem, I immediately realized how strong this synergy will be and decided to make something outside the box.
In a world full of Slayers and Berserkers I wanted to be something different and went for an often underrated Ascendancy: The Chieftain.


For leveling, follow this path until ~level 30:


Pick up the 2 Jewel slots ASAP and get 2 Wildfire jewels (15% fire damage! Mine cost ~1c each). If you play SSF, pick up your first Wildfire jewel in Act 5 via quest and consider play another character to that stage of the game to get your second jewel. 4 additional MS-Projectiles will make your level progression much smoother and skyrockets your DPS.

Finish the tree to like this stage at ~level 60:


Picking up all the juicy fire damage, more life and jewel sockets.

A final level 90 Skilltree would look like this:


Get Point Blank, Unwavering Stance, Endurance Charges, even more life and some extra defense, in that order.
Points beyond 90 can be put into more life at the Scion life wheel around "Constitution" or be put into some 2-Hand-Damage nodes like "Wrecking Ball", "Executioner" or "Slaughter" when using an Axe.


You can do normal lab at around level 35 without to many problems. Wildfire Jewels will push your DPS like crazy and you should have a 4-link at that moment anyway.
Taking Chieftain as your Ascendancy of choice will give you the opportunity to get some Fire related stuff to cover your foes in Fire and Ash!

Pick "Ngamahu, Flame's Advance" after normal lab.
At around level 55-60 you should be able to clear cruel lab.
Pick "Hinekora, Death's Fury" after you complete it.
Merciless should be doable before you do Kitava at around level 70.
Pick up "Ramako, Sun's Light" and start using Endurance Charges to get beefy as Jerky.
When you finish Uber Lab somewhat later, finish your Ascendancy by picking up "Tawhoa, Forest's

Ngamahu, Flame's Advance --> Hinekora, Death's Fury --> Ramako, Sun's Light -->
Tawhoa, Forest's Strength

Patch 3.2 changes:

Nothing Major changes in your choices. You will take the four nodes above in the future as well, but the effects of them will Change. To make it short: non-totem Chieftain will be buffed significantly!
50% base conversion from physical to fire damage. Covering rare and unique enemies in ash for 10 seconds on hit, increasing fire damage taken by 20% and a buff on the Ngamahu node, increasing your fire damage by 100% of your ohysical damage for 3 seconds every 10 seconds!



Soul of Arakaali / Soul of Lunaris (depending on boss fight you will encounter, Lunaris as general choice, Arakaali for Chaos/Poison Bosses)

Soul of Yugul on reflect maps
Soul of Tukohama for general use and facetanking weaker bosses
Soul of Ralakesh when you captured the soul of Drek, apex hunter to get that juicy immunity to blind and maim and be more resistend to bleed.

Sockets and Links

6-link Setup in Weapon (4R1G1B):

Molten Strike - Ancestral Call - Elemental Damage with Attacks - Added Fire Damage - Slower Projectiles - Increased Area of Effect (inc AoE)
Swap Ancestral Call on Bosses for Multistrike and Inc AoE for Concentrated Effect.

4-link Setups and miscellaneous:

Cast when Damage Taken (CWDT, max level 5)- Enfeeble (level fitting to CWDT) - Increased Duration - Vaal Haste
Note: Vaal Haste is not procced by CWDT because Vaal skills can only be cast automatically. It is just linked in the setup for the Inc Duration.

Leap Slam - Fortify - Faster Attacks + Flame Golem off slot.

Ancestral Protector - Maim + Anger + Arctic Armor off Slot


Priorities are getting resistances to 75%, life on as many pieces of gear as possible and then offensive stats like attack speed, physical damage to attacks/melee, fire damage and of course some stats like Dex, Strength and Int to get your gems leveld up.

For the weapon slot you have plenty of freedom. You can use a generic high phys-DPS 2-hand rare weapon or get some unique like Atziri's Disfavour, Ngamahu's Flame, Doomsower or even Oro's Sacrifice (nice way to generate Frenzy charges, giving you another boost to DPS).

Best choice DPS wise would be Atziri's but with Ngamahu you have additional Lava balls, utilizing your socketed support gems. Overall Ngamahu seems slightly stronger.

Get some Gripped Gloves for more projectile damage. Attack speed on them would be perfect!

For the ring slots Steel Rings are a good idea. Get them with additional + phys damage or + fire damage.

For the chest slot you really want a Kaom's Heart. I was lucky to find one, it's rather expensive and a long term goal.
Since you have one, just use a generic rare chest with +life, resist and use the sockets for your totem (Ancestral Protector) and link it additional support gems.

For the amulet slot your long term goal should be Xoph's Blood.


Additional MS-Projectiles on helemt.
Mana and life leech on boots.


Life flask with immunity to bleeding and instant leech.
Quicksilver Flask with immunity to freeze and increased charges/duration.
Dying sun unique flask for those juicy 2 additional projectiles.
Atziri's Promise for more DPS and leech.

5th slot can be situational. Take a resistance flask when facing high elemental damage.
I recommend using an Onslaught flask for general purpose.


Leap Slam into groups of enemies, strike them with MS 1 to x times, Leap Slam into the next group of enemies. Rinse & repeat.
On Bosses, Abysses, Breaches and tough rare mobs, use your totem, then Leap Slam into battle like the half naked fiery man you are!

Closing words

I hope you enjoy the guide and playing the build!
This is my first guide ever on PoE and would love to get some feedback of you guys!
If you wish, I will write a guide for my Glacial Hammer Inquisitor after the Holidays!

Cheers and stay sane, exiles!

Patch 3.2-Edit:

Due to massive buffs of the Chieftain-Ascendancy, this build will to even better in the upcoming league and beyond. Feel free to share your experience with us!
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Joined: Tue Jul 29, 2014 9:08 am
Location: Buford, GA

Fri Dec 22, 2017 11:21 am

This sounds pretty similar to how I was playing my character without even knowing what I was doing. This build looks like something I would like to follow. I'll let you know how it goes as I am only level 29 currently.
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Location: Sweden

Fri Dec 22, 2017 5:38 pm

I was looking for something like this thanks!
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Joined: Wed Apr 26, 2017 9:21 am

Sun Feb 25, 2018 10:48 am

Added some 3.2-ralted stuff for next patch/league. Enjoy setting the world on fire!
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Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2018 12:16 am

Mon Mar 05, 2018 12:17 am

Hey, just wondering what bandits do you go for?
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Joined: Wed Apr 26, 2017 9:21 am

Mon Mar 05, 2018 2:52 am

[QUOTE="Yoshiruu, post: 56769, member: 122853"]Hey, just wondering what bandits do you go for?[/QUOTE]

Oak or kill all. Oak brings some extra defense if you want to go hardcore or feel too squishy. General choice though is killing all.
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Joined: Mon Dec 18, 2017 7:34 pm
Location: Ohio

Wed May 16, 2018 1:39 pm

Will this still be viable next league I wonder? Thinking of trying maybe..
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Joined: Sat Jun 02, 2018 12:39 pm

Sat Jun 02, 2018 12:42 pm

I'll have to give this a try. Thanks for the suggestion/guide!
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Joined: Sat Jul 02, 2016 2:27 pm

Tue Jun 05, 2018 5:59 am

Has anyone tried this build this League? How is it performing?
Especially in the Incursion Temple Room Thingy?
I suck at clearing rooms/opening Doors or killing Bosses in the rooms. :cohhAim:
And am looking for a new build to have fun again.
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Posts: 48
Joined: Wed Apr 26, 2017 9:21 am

Fri Jun 08, 2018 4:35 pm

Nothing changed so you can play it.

There is a one-handed variant utilizing the "Brutus' Lead Sprinkler" mace. Look up the MS-guide from the Streamer/Youtuber "LiftingNerdBro".
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