Titan Quest Anniversary Edition: Illusionist (Rogue / Nature) Build Guide

Build Guide for a Trapper / Summoner / Poison Caster (can be tweaked to be more melee, archer, etc. based instead of poison caster)

 

Introduction

Circe, Enchantress of Aeaea
Mastery: Illusionist (Rogue / Nature)
Build: Trapper / Summoner / Poison Caster (can be tweaked to be more melee, archer, etc. based instead of poison caster)

The Illusionist makes for an excellent summoner with the ability to keep 4 pets constantly (3 wolves and nymph) and lay down traps as they move, along with excellent CC options and a big health pool to protect themselves.

+Skill is pretty important for the build. +2 nature is required for the third wolf, +4 rogue is required for zero on cooldown on traps. Long term you actually want to have more than +4 skill actually, a lot of the skills require deep point investment and having more than +4 skill means you will able to refund points from skills that over the max ultimate level to invest in others. In addition it helps make your passives into one point wonders.

It’s a good idea to pre-farm some gear on another character if you have one. Epic Stonebinder’s will get you enough for the extra wolf and you can use an assassin’s amulet for an additional +2 rogue. 2 wolves is fine for early normal if you’re starting at level 1 but will be easier if you have the +skill. If you don’t have the gear, you can vendor farm for Wanderer’s Amulet for +1 Nature and gorgons for Stonebinder’s Cuffs for +1 skill or look out for a Shrine of Mastery as it can boost your skill level enough for you to summon the third wolf while its buff is active (you need to keep wolves alive after the buff goes away through as you cannot resummon if third wolf dies).

I played as a poison caster but the character can be tweaked to be more melee, archer, throwing, etc oriented if you wish. I think a more ranged option would be better than melee given the masteries CC options. You should have a fair amount of leeway with your stats.

As for Atlantis, Poison Mayhem is a nice pickup for Poison Gas Bomb and Earthbind is a great CC option. If you don’t have Atlantis you might want to skip PGB in favour of a ranged option then. Earthbind is great but you still have Flash Powder and Briar Ward for protection.

  • Excellent survivability and CC
  • Lots of pets
  • Trap cheese
  • Lacks burst DPS
  • Heavily dependent on skill+ and CDR

Run completed with the xMax (x3) mod

Required Skills

Call of the Wild

The main pet workhorse of the build. Summon limit increased to two at 7/16 and three at 18/16.
They will dish out physical damage, plague synergy will help their DPS. Call of the Wild has a number of synergy skills. Maul will add some more damage, Survival Instinct is useful for making a wounded wolf extra tanky preventing them from getting burned down too fast and Strength of the Pack will buff themselves and you with physical damage and speed.

The base skill should be the #1 priority to max. Maul and Survival Instinct should be left at 1 point and buffed with +skill items, there’s just too many other things to spend your skill points on. Strength of the Pack through is worth pumping points into through.

Regrowth

Useful heal for topping up your wolves’ health between, and during, fights (not to mention your own). Put further points into regrowth when you find your heals can’t keep pace anymore. Accelerated growth is worth investing at least a few points into. The faster regrowth cools down, the more you can spam it. This can be very helpful when you’re fighting a boss that can damage multiple of your wolves at once and you need to spread around a few heals. With so many pets out, Dissemination can help spread around some heals. It’s not as important as other skills so one point backed by +skill items is usually fine.

Late run with full gear if you’re looking to free up point somewhere then it’s possible to free up points here. While it’s still useful for emergency heals in combat on your wolves, with heavy CDR it’s simply faster to just resummon the wolves with full health than patch them up.

Heart of Oak

Gives a speed buff on the first point, maxxed out it gives a huge boost to health for you and your pets. It doesn’t matter as much for the pets as their health pools get huge buffs elsewhere but this can help give you an enormous health pool. Tranquility of Water will give a chance to get discount energy cost. Mana use isn’t a big issue as you can just use pots. A single point buffed with skill items should be fine. Permanence of Stone will give you and your pets elemental buffs. Doesn’t give a huge amount but it will allow you to concentrate on other stats on your gear instead if you’re having trouble getting it and help mitigate damage on pets, through +skill is probably fine.

Plague

Cast on a monster and it will spread to nearby targets. Can be a little clunky to target sometimes and does okay damage but is primarily used for it’s synergy skills which both apply fantastic debuffs that will synergize great with your pets. Fatigue reduces dmg dealth, speed and chance of health reduction. Susceptibility reduces resistances for physical, elemental and poison. Max out both synergies and you can put spare points into the base skill when you have them or just leave at 1 point and buff with +skill.

Lay Trap

A stationary pet that does piercing damage. You can summon up to three of them. The Rapid Construction synergy reduces cooldown and energy cost. The Improved Firing Mechanism synergy increases the number of projectiles, chance to pass through enemies and pierce damage.

As it will be one of your prime sources of damage all of its skill should be maxxed out. You’ll want to have +4 rogue skill at a min so that Rapid Construction grants it zero cooldown so you can quickly throw down new traps as you move.

Briar Ward

Your primary defence buff. Activating Briar Ward surrounds your character with a briar thicket. Each part of the thicket will eat melee and ranged attacks until it runs out of health. AOEs can bypass the thicket through so pay attention. Max the base skill to increase the thicket’s health so you are protected longer. Drop a single point into Stinging Nettle, the retaliation damage is negligible but you need a point in it to unlock Sanctuary. Sanctuary will boost your health regen, grant you damage absorption and reduce your energy costs while you are in the centre area of the thicket. You should still get the buff I believe even if the thicket is damaged if you are in the centre.

Refresh

Briar Ward has a fairly long two minute cooldown. Refresh will allow you to greatly reduce it’s cooldown. You should aim to get enough CDR to combo with the points spent in Refresh to remove Briar Ward’s cooldown whenever you use Refresh so that you can constantly keep Briar Ward up.

Optional Skills

Calculated Strike

Calculated Strike can serve as your main LMB attack. It boosts physical damage, goes through enemies (useful for bow / throwing) and adds piercing damage. Every hit of the skill builds builds a charge; the skill requires 3 charges to be ready. When you have enough charges, the next attack activates skill, gets the bonuses, and consumes all of the charges. The Lucky Hit synergy skill has a chance to add physical damage, bleeding dot and pierce damage increase.

Blade Honing

Increases pierce ratio and gives some flat piercing damage. Only useable when using swords, spears and throwing weapons.

Throwing Knife

One of the most unique skill in the game. It carries over many unusual damage factors and effects:

  • Uses Casting Rate rather than Attack Speed.
  • Properties applied to Throwing Knife:
    • Armor, jewelery and artifact flat damage bonus
    • Armor and jewelery charms’/relics’ effects
    • Any kind of percentage damage bonus from any source
    • Any on hit effect provided by armor, jewelery and artifact
  • Properties NOT applied to Throwing Knife:
    • Any kind of flat weapon damage
    • Any kind of flat shield damage
    • Non-damage weapon properties
    • Non-damage shield properties

Throwing Knife has a 10% chance to pass through Enemies, applies a 3s bleeding DOT and does piercing damage. At rank 1/12 the skill has a 6s recharge, at 12/12 it has 1.6s recharge and at 16/12 it has no recharge. The Flurry of Knives synergy turns Throwing Knife into a frontal conal aoe with 8 projectiles at 10/6.

This skill is primarily used for spreading poison from Envenom Weapon. The base skill shouldn’t need to many points in it case you want to use this in between Poison Gas Bombs as a caster unless you want to it spammable. If you do unlock Throwing Knife though you’ll want to pump points into Flurry of Knives so that to hits enough targets to make it useful.

Disarm Traps

Constructs and devices are normally annoying to fight as a rogue. This passive will boost your damage inflicted on them while also decreasing damage you take from them. You’ve got an army of pets to deal with them for you but there’s no reason to drop not to drop a single point into it and buff with +skill.

Flash Powder

An useful AOE CC ability for your arsenal. Causes nearby enemies a Chance to Fumble attacks and inflicts Confusion. Not 100% reliable and I preferred using a combination of Earthbind and Briar Ward. Unlike Earthbind through it’s available early and Briar Ward needs CDR + Refresh to be useful and it’s good if you’re getting mobbed and the other CC options aren’t available and is worth using as a panic button in the early running.

Lethal Strike

A single massive damage blow. Lethal Strike does an insane physical and pierce damage increase on your attack. The Mortal Wound synergy skill adds a stun and adds a huge bonus to bleeding and poison damage.

Can be useful for dealing with enemies with big health pools. Special care needs to be taken when fighting enemies with reflection as you can potentially 1-shot yourself with it. Could be useful for adding a bit of burst DPS to the build; it didn’t really fit into the playstyle I was going with and only picked up Calculated Strike for a spammable LMB attack when stuff was on cooldown.

Open Wound

Gives you a chance to apply a bleeding DOT when using spear, bow, or throwing weapon. It’s pretty meh, max of one point only and buff with +skill.

Anatomy

Passive to boost your bleeding damage. If you go heavy on throwing knives it’s more worth investing in as you need a good way to inflict bleed to make use of it. Otherwise max of one point only and buff with +skill.

Sylvan Nymph

Nymph is the second pet in the nature tree. Ranged attacker with bow. It’s okay but I prefer wolves and pumping her up requires lots of skill points. Drop a point into her and her synergies and buff with +skill for an extra warm body.

Blade Barrier

Interesting skill Atlantis exclusive skill. Summons a trio of stationary whirling blades that can transmit effects like a regular weapon. Didn’t pick up for my build, already had a pretty full hotbar of stuff I used pretty frequently.

Earthbind

An incredibly powerful single cast CC ability. Immobilizes all enemies around you within 22 metres, applying a poison DOT, 50% reduced DA and slower movement. Cooldown is 20 seconds, with decent CDR you can cast this fairly regularly. Worth maxxing.

My Final Skill Trees

This is my final skill allocation. Using a lot of +skill items to make skills into one point wonders, reach Atlantis mastery levels, and spread points around everywhere. Primary plan is to throw traps, bunker down in Briar Ward and sic the wolves on enemies.Then toss in Plague and Poison Gas Bomb, Earthbind to lock enemy movement and use Calculated Strike when stuff is on cooldown. I used Flash Powder early on but mostly used Earthbind and Briar Ward late.

Stats

If you have Atlantis, the extra mastery points give you:
Rogue mastery = +14 str, +20 dex, +280 health
Nature mastery = +12 dex, +20int, +160 health, +128 energy

Health: With Heart of Oak, you’ll get more benefit for every point you drop in health than other builds. You have good CC option to avoid damage through. You can add extra points here if you want to be a bit tankier to help mitigate any damage spikes you take.

Energy: No points, Tranquility of Water helps with energy costs and you can just buy energy potions

Strength: Enough to wear your gear. If you’re going for a melee oriented approach then you should put more points into it, 2 Str ~ 1 Dex is okay. ~650 or so is enough to wear any Str armour. With archers / throwers, 1 Str ~ Dex is fine.

Intellect: Enough to wear your gear. I went with a Str / Dex approach to my build but you can go put points into Int if you wish to use caster oriented gear for easier access to CDR, casting speed, etc. if you want.

Dexterity: Enough to wear your gear at a minimum. It will boost your OA/DA and bleeding, piercing and poison damage. You’ll need 425 Dex for legendary Stonebinder’s Cuffs for the +3 skills probably (unless you go Int build for Archmage Claps for casting speed and CDR) but probably want more.

Equipment

Stats to look out for the build:

A min of +4 Skill to reach maximum level. More if you can get it.
Heavy CDR to be able to cast PGB faster and enough to keep Briar Ward up constantly combed with Refresh.
Decent resistances (min of 40% in major ones, preferably more, bleeding is most niche resist so you can sacrifice it for others if needed as it’s not needed except for a handful of places)
Decent Casting Speed ~150-200%
Approx ~800-1k DA for legendary
+Poison damage (if going poison build), or physical and / or damage if you’re going (melee / ranged)

This is my final equipment loadout. Went with throwing weapon + shield for range option while also having another gear slot for stats and damage mitigation and don’t need to worry about OA. Overall, resists really good, decent DA, big health pool with Heart of Oak up. Lots of +skills and good CDR.

Using Touch of Nyx as main hand for extra resists, faster cast speed and lower energy cost. Another good alternative is Gorgon’s Edge. Neither are particularly rare, throwing weapons drop frequently, so shouldn’t be hard to find one or the other really. Using Soldier’s Unyielding Will as my shield for it’s large DA buff.

Stonebinder’s Cuffs for +3 skill. Ismene’s Helm for it’s poison damage buff. Discs of Mani is a favourite of mine, tons of resists, good armour, energy, speed, +2 Nature and Strength of the Pack and pet health / speed buff while also only requiring fairly minimal Strength to equip. Torso of Loki for resists, +2 Rogue, dodge, speed and resists. It’s also been upgraded with normal craftsman upgrade.

For accessories, both my rings used to buff pet damage, Wraithlord’s socketed with Demon’s Blood to fill up Vitality resist, Sindri has less pet damage buff but provides other useful buffs such as CDR, casting speed, dodge, +lay trap. It’s also been upgraded with epic craftsman upgrade. Using Ran’s Favour for it’s large bonus to resists and CDR which I used to replace an Amber Necklace.

Talisman of the Jade Emperor is one of my favourites artifacts and seemed like the best available as is gave me a hefty boost to elemental resist, bonus to strength, more DA and -25% CDR to help cast Poison Gas Bomb, Refresh, Briar Ward, etc. faster.

Leveling

I skipped the early drudgery and started at in act 5 as an Accomplished Hero and twinked up with +skill items. Doing so, you’ll want to max out your most important skills immediately. Wolves, Traps, Regrowth, Plague, Heart of Oak, Envenom Weapon, Poison Gas Bomb, etc.

Starting at level 1, I’d suggest going Nature first as you can get pets out immediately. One point into Regrowth for a starting heal, then max Call of the Wild. Once Call is maxxed, level up to unlock Heart of Oak, Maul and Plague. Then you can switch to Rogue, grab Envenom Weapon, Flash Powder and level up mastery to unlock Traps and Poison Gas Bomb. Level traps up next and it’s synergies.

Once you’ve got traps going as well, you can continue leveling up Rogue to get Poison Mayhem or level up Calculated Strike and Envenom tree for your own DPS or level up Nature to level up Strength of the Pack, unlock Nymph, Plague synergies, etc. Briar Ward isn’t very useful until you get good CDR and Refresh so you can ignore that for now.

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Post Author: Robins Chew

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