Path of Exile: The Infernal Blow Heavy Metal Marauder – Full Build Guide

Infernal Blow Build

The passive tree has been updated for 1.2. Full article update soon.

I originally designed this explosive marauder build when I decided that instead of kicking the new season off with onslaught that I would go to anarchy and have some fun with a melee spec. I wanted to create something that had a real weighty feeling to it and after playing around with a few skills I knew that Infernal Blow with Melee Splash was the way to go. Since this build was designed with Anarchy league in mind it’s not recommended for hardcore leagues, though I think with careful play and gearing it is reasonably hardcore viable thanks to some excellent defensive mechanics.

So far I’ve taken this Marauder to level 79 and gotten into level 71 maps without any major issues. I still have a significant amount of room to improve my gear as well so I am pretty confident I can take him into high level maps over time. I have to also mention that this was one of the most fun builds to level that I’ve ever played. Right from level 19 when I picked up melee splash Infernal Blow became amazing to use. All I had to do was craft high physical damage maces with a couple of alterations and I was set to smash. If you’d like to learn more about how to level this build then check out the level 30, 50 and 69 recap videos in the description below.

If you want to see this build in action then check out the video below!


UPDATED for 1.1 Sacrifice of the Vaal!

This build is much tankier since the Marauder changes and the build has become overall simpler to gear and play – which means more exploding mobs and less time worrying about mana and casting curses etc. We lost a bit of DPS in the patch but it’s still a pretty crunchy and fun build to play!

Skills & Support Gems

Infernal Blow

Core Support Gems – Melee Splash / Multistrike / Melee Physical Damage

Additional Support Gems – Weapon Elemental Damage / Added Fire / Stun / Life or Mana Leech

Infernal Blow destroys enemies in two ways: firstly it deals a ton of fire and physical damage (which becomes an AoE thanks to melee splash) and secondly it causes slain mobs to explode, dealing 25% of their total life as damage to nearby enemies. This combination makes the skill effective for both trash and rare mobs. You can get very high damage output just by taking advantage of the physical to elemental conversions of Hatred and Infernal blow itself – all you need is a mace with a high increased physical damage mod. At end game we use the Marohi Erqi unique 2-handed mace to provide a ton of damage and an inherent increased AoE support, which effectively gives us one free support gem. Once you 5 Link this mace you can also add on Weapon Elemental Damage for a big damage boost and if you happen to get a 6th link you can throw in added fire for even more deeps.

Leap Slam

Core Support Gems – Faster Attacks / Stun / Endurance Charge on Melee Stun

Additional Support Gems – Melee Physical Damage / Life Leech / Added Fire

Leap Slam serves quite a few purposes in this build. Firstly it can be used to deal damage and will often 1 shot trash mobs saving time. Secondly, it functions as our main form of movement to counteract our slow movement speed. Thirdly, it functions as an escape skill for the rare occasions where we cannot directly tank mobs. And, finally, it works as a great initiator thanks to it being almost guaranteed to stun any mob we use it on, even some bosses. UPDATE: since the addition of ‘Endurance Charge on Melee Stun’ leap slam can also now replace enduring cry as our source of endurance charges!

Warlord’s Mark

Support Gems – None are necessary but if you have sockets go for Faster Casting or Increased AoE

This curse is not very popular overall but it works perfectly in this build and is fundamental to it’s playstyle. The first reason we use it is to maintain close to 100% uptime on our 7 endurance charges. At level 20 the curse has a 30% chance to grant an endurance charge whenever we kill an enemy which is more than enough to maintain and even build up our full 7 charges. The second reason we Warlord’s Mark is for the Life and Mana Leech it provides, 7 and 3% respectively from level 17 onwards, which is a huge amount when calculated from our extremely high physical damage stats. The third and final reason we use this curse is not to be underestimated, and that is a 100% increase in flask charges gained from killing mobs. In practice this means you can spam your health flasks and granites almost as much as you want without running out.

Enduring Cry

Enduring Cry is helpful for building up initial endurance charges and also for when we face strong single targets. It’s also an essential skill for leveling before Warlord’s Mark starts to take over.


Core Auras – Hatred / Level 4 Clarity

After the aura changes we just run these two for damage and mana regen. Our Trigger gem setup covers our defense.

Blood Rage

This skill is useful in easier content to improve your clear speed. Thanks to our extremely high life regen we can run this skill without taking any actual damage to improve our attack speed by 15%, which also improves our effective move speed with Leap Slam.

TRIGGER GEMS We run two separate cast on damage taken trigger gem setups.

  • Level 1 Cast on Damage Taken + Enduring Cry + Molten Shell
  • Level 5 Cast on Damage Taken + Immortal Call + Decoy Totem + Increased Duration

Passive Skill Tree

Link to the Passive Tree.

Build Plan spreadsheet.

Resolute Technique – Provides us with much needed consistency and means that we can focus on raw damage and defence instead of accuracy or crit.

Amplify – This gives us an extra 12% radius on Infernal Blow and Leap Slam and it also improves our damage slightly for these skills. I believe this also affects the radius of melee splash.

Master of the Arena – This is a subtle skill but I would rate it as absolutely essential as it goes a long way to reducing the frustrations of melee targeting. This is thanks to the +2 increase to melee range, which works amazingly well with multistrike.

Iron Reflexes – This allows us to convert the evasion from the Grace Aura into a significant armor boost. On the way there we are able to grab the Beserking and Diamond skin nodes too making this a pretty worthwhile area of the tree to visit.

Endurance Charges & Life Regen Per Charge – Pick up each of the three endurance charge nodes as well as the Life Regen Per Endurance Charge node. With our consistent uptime these all provide a huge defensive bonus.

Mana Nodes – With some attention paid to gear we can just barely scrape by on the mana reduction node in the Templar area, the mana reservation nodes near the Duelist and the Mana flows cluster in the Duelist start area.

Blood Magic While Leveling – It’s also worth noting that this build levels till about 70 entirely on Blood Magic and oinly switches back to mana once decent end game gear has been acquired, which I’ll go over shortly when I talk about gearing. Check out this video for an explanation on how and when to drop blood magic.

Damage & Stun Nodes – The final thing to note is the few damage and attack related nodes I do get in this build. Firstly, We get as much attack speed as we can feasibly get to help with leap slam and to reduce the root time on Multistrike. Next we get only a few very efficient physical damage clusters. We also get lava lash for an amazing 30% increase in fire damage for only one point. And finally, we get the Skull Cracking Node near the Maruader area as it also gives 10% stun threshold reduction. You’ll also notice that I have grabbed the two stun threshold reduction nodes south of that as well giving us a 20% stun threshold reduction stat from the passive tree alone. Stun ends up being a huge part of the defensive mechanics of this build at end game so I may even get the 16% from the Bone breaker cluster as I continue to level up. Overall you can see that we can have pretty high damage on this build with the support of very few passive points.

Bandit Quest Rewards

Normal – Health from Oak Cruel – Passive, kill em all. Merciless – Endurance Charge from Oak.

How to Play This Build (Method of Operation)

  • Enduring Cry – Just before you engage with your first pack of mobs in each zone you should use enduring cry to build up a few initial endurance charges. You should also do this whenever your charges are about to expire if you cannot get a bunch of kills under warlord’s mark before then.
  • Warlord’s Mark – The next step is curse mobs with Warlords Mark, try to cover the majority that you will be fighting over the next few seconds as this will ensure your flasks remain full and your endurance charges refreshed.
  • Leap Slam – Next, Always initiate with Leap Slam if possible. Not only is it faster but thanks to our high damage and stun threshold reduction we also stun all of the mobs around us preventing them from attack.
  • Infernal Blow – Finally, finish the pack off with Infernal Blow. If there is a rare or magic mob try to lock onto them and the splash will take care of the trash. You also do more damage to your main target, which will help down them faster. If there are any stragglers you can finish them off with a quick leap slam. A bit of a tip for mutlistrike melee skills is to always hold shift or force stand still whenever you attack. This will help a lot with desync and will ensure that at least the second and third shots will connect with whatever mobs are closest, even if you happen to be off on your inital targeting.
  • Getting Around with Leap Slam – Traveling between mob packs is as simple as leap slamming over terrain and around obstacles. The similar shift tip applies here as well but for different reasons. Holding shift while leap slamming will force your character to leap, even if you are targetting too far away.

How to Deal with Reflect

First let’s look at Physical Reflect. Since we are using multistrike our attack damage is reduced a bit and split into three separate attacks. This means we can pretty much wail on physical reflect mobs without problem. HOWEVER, do not use leap slam on physical reflect packs. Since it has a ton of physical damage in one hit it can be very dangerous. Solution is pretty simply: on physical reflect use Infernal Blow and not Leap Slam.

Next up is Elemental Reflect, the more dangerous of the two. The real danger here is when Infernal Blow’s explosion procs on a large pack of mobs. Since this does 25% of each mobs base life as fire damage this can one shot you. And so the solution is pretty simple – just leap slam elemental reflect packs to death.

So, in review:

  • Infernal Blow Physical Reflect Packs, and,
  • Leap Slam Elemental Reflect packs.
  • With Dual reflect packs switch out to glacial hammer for your main attack or just be very careful.



Let’s start with the obvious, the Marohi Erqi. This is pretty much your end game goal so start saving for it early. It’s relatively expensive for beginners but it’s nowhere near as bad as buying something like a Shavronne’s wrappings. I bought this mace in Anarchy league for 2.5 exalts as a six socket without any links. I then managed to 5 link it in about 44 fusings, which is a fair bit better than average, which should be around 100. We use the Marohi because of it’s high physical damage, built in increased AoE support and increased stun duration. The negative effects of reduced move speed and accuracy don’t affect us and although the slow attack speed is a bit of a downer it’s overcome by the other stats. Before you get the Marohi simply use any mace with 20% quality, 90% or more increased physical damage and whatever links you need.

Gloves, Boots, Chest & Helmet

All you really need to focus on for these slots is life, armor and resists. You don’t need to worry about movespeed on your boots because most of our movement is done via leap slam.


Belts are almost the same as the other armor pieces but you also want to get as much Reduced Enemy Stun Threshold as possible, I have the mid roll of 10% on my belt and it makes a big difference. A leather belt is optimal for the base but heavy is okay too.

Rings & Amulet

On your rings you want get at least 1% mana leech and one decent base mana and mana regeneration roll to cover our mana requirements. Intelligence is also helpful as well. Other than that you can get phys damage or any defensive stats you need. For the amulet I went for defensive stats in addition to Dexterity and intelligence. These main stats are important because we need between 90 to 140 to run our skills effectively and end game.


Finally, we have our flasks. I run three bubbling health flasks, which I spam whenever I need. Thanks to Warlord’s mark they rarely run out. For the suffixes you ideally want various dispels. I also run two granites with the Ample prefixes and the iron Skin suffixes. Two is more than enough to have pretty much permanent uptime on granite armor. With one of these active my armor shoots up to 24k and with endurance charges on top of that I can easily exceed 90% physical mitigation most of the time.

Forum Thread

The forum thread passive skill tree will be the first to be updated:

Leveling Guides for this Build

And that pretty much covers everything! I’ve had a ton of fun with this build and it’s probably going to be one of the few that I continue playing into high level maps even when I reroll new characters. It’s also been amazing to level this build alongside a bunch of you guys who have also been trying it out – the feedback I’ve been getting on it has been pretty awesome as well!

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24 Responses to “Path of Exile: The Infernal Blow Heavy Metal Marauder – Full Build Guide”

  1. Humudu says:

    Hello, thank you for putting time into this, i enjoy the build. But i am not 100% sure if i agree with your build to the fullest, but almost. I think you could use some more of the very easy obtainable passives like the ones at the very start like a good increase of armor and physical damage. But hey, details.

    Now what i really want to contact you about is the Passive: Unwawering stance. It is just 3-4 points away in one direction, Don’t you think it would work Great with the Iron reflexes? It will make you lose 5% evasion (the minimum despite iron reflexes) But so worth it i think. I’m just in the late 30s so i want your opinion

    • ZIGGYD says:

      Unwavering stance is certainly a good option for this build and a lot of people will go for it. My reason for not picking it up is mainly to benefit from Blind when in party play. Even with only the 5% evasion blind still means mobs will rarely ever hit you. Stuns also become not much of an issue when you have a good amount of life and a ton of mitigation like this build does.

  2. TedintheShed says:

    Hi ZD,

    Been running this build in maps at level 76 and am very happy. I went late to convert from BM though- didn’t do it until 74. I am 10,500 armor and 10,000 damage. I was experimenting to see if it would be viable and it just wasn’t. So I have a couple of questions as I tweak this build:

    First, I was wondering that with Iron Reflexes and the fact that I am running 4 auras, what do you thing about Alpha’s Howl as a helm? While the life and resist are missed, I don’t really need resists considering I am at max resist before my charges.

    Second, where to go from here on the passive tree? Many other builds are hitting 30-40K damage, so should physical weapon damage of attack speed become priorities? Or should I seek out nearby reduced mana reservation node and the like to increase life? Or perhaps you have something else in mind :)


    • ZIGGYD says:

      G’day Ted!

      Glad you’ve been enjoying it!

      I think Alpha’s howl will be viable if you can ensure the rest of your gear has a good amount of life on it.

      The ‘where to from here’ for damage is the physical damage and stun with maces near resolute technique. There are also a few other good physical nodes nearby you could get and each will give you a sizeable damage boost. And yeah, the other option is to pick up some more mana related nodes if you are having problems on that end. The third alternative is to go for the duellist and mara armor clusters (though I personally think the charges are enough mitigation).

      Hope this helps!

      • TedintheShed says:

        Thanks ZD,

        Next question is by choosing the 6% physical damage/4% Reduced stun threshold nodes on the way up to Bonebreaker, is the reduced stun threshold on the belt still necessary?

  3. UnholySon says:

    Love the build! When that infernal blow hits, WOW! But sometimes I can swipe at mobs 3 or 4 times without a hit — which is why I gave up on infernal blow skill a long time ago; until I saw how awesome your build makes it. Is this an accuracy rating thing?

    About the Passive Skill Tree — Would you suggest heading down to Master of the Arena first or up to towards Amplify? I’ve got to make a decision now on which way to go first… and as the skill points come slower later on, I’d like to know which way would be more beneficial earlier in the game.

    • ZIGGYD says:

      Yeah, the build really needs the ‘Resolute Technique’ keystone or it tends to miss a lot. RT gives you 100% accuracy at the cost of crit chance (which this build doesn’t need).

      I’d go towards master of the arena first, it helps a lot with targeting, especially with multistrike.

      • UnholySon says:

        Thanks for the help ZIGGYD! It’s such a fun game but can be complicated for beginners. I’ve watched a ton of your videos and that has helped a lot!

        I have the RT keystone but am still experiencing the inaccuracy issue I mentioned before. I wonder if it’s something else, or maybe I’m not aiming right.

  4. Jason says:

    Hey ZD love your work …but how long until this build is updated? i only have the 1 character on POE and im time poor but am keen to try the new release.keep up the great work mate im just hanging for this to be updated.


  5. Guts_TheBerserker says:

    Hi ZD, Just saw your video on passive skill trees, I believe you recently updated your skill trees to the recent PoE Update? I noticed you skipped “Berserking” entirely as it was moved to a different node, is the impact to your build minimal or berserking is necessary for it to be effective?

  6. Del_Ruul says:

    Hi ZiggyD,

    I have been running with your build and I like it very much. However since the recent changes to the Cast on damage taken gem has come into effect could you update this to reflect the changes in your build.


    Aussie living in Germany

  7. Bigcf says:

    Yo Ziggyd i was wondering what you are going to do now with you defensive abilities after the nerf to cast when damage taken

  8. Kat says:

    Hi ZD, could you post an updated pasive skill tree(more level).
    Thx and nice build! (and cheaper)

  9. hey Z I wasn’t thinking about getting this game until I saw your freaking awesome build can you leave a reply with what I should get from lv one like skills and everything for the infernal blow build

  10. DennyCrane says:

    Ziggy, any chance you’ll update the tree for the Vaal release? ANyone have any suggestions?

  11. Stephen says:

    Hey, will you make a 1.1.0 Update for this build?

  12. David says:

    Hey do u got a new skill tree for patch 1.10?

  13. xman says:

    Can you update your build to 1.1.0?

  14. Chris Webber says:

    Hey Ziggy; Love the information. My friends just got me into this game. I am really new, but I honestly see myself enjoying this over any other build. However, you have not shown us your passives. I see passives all over with 45 unused. Also, several of your passives are unlinked so I am not sure how that is possible. Can you please provide us with a link to your entire spec. I would really really appreciate it. I would like to start leveling him tomorrow. I will Master of Arena first. However, after that I am unsure what to do. This thing is soooo confusing.

  15. Chris Webber says:

    Your passive tree is actually out of date is why I think. That is why stuff is not linked. Can you please provide us with an updated tree please.

  16. Gigi says:

    Hey, so quick question, how does the new passive tree work? been following it and was wondering if it was bugged or something, basically the pathing for the nodes disappear and i don’t entirely know which direction you would be following, (sorry for the poorly drawn question mark)

  17. Jim says:

    Could you please update the build for 1.3.0 patch. There are many changes…

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