Path of Exile

Permanent vaal spells are back. This is the most broken ring in 3 years.

Edit: TL;DR: Certain mod combinations on the new Atziri drop, Triumvirate Authority, combined with 1-4 other items make permanent vaal skills viable.

There have been a few posts on this subreddit lately showcasing the power of vaal skills this league. These videos have a few things in common, the main one being they use the unique pair of gloves, Hateforge. This is not the only insanely useful vaal skill item this league.

The Triumvirate Authority is a ring I think has gone under the radar except for a few cases, especially ones you can see on This use case is for aurabots. People mentioning in other threads that you can't get perma uptime on vaal aura skills, such as vaal grace and vaal haste. I can tell you for a fact, that is simply not true.

I was running content with my aurabot, with plans to move into delve when we got done with atlas preparation, and once we got bored of the league mechanic. We, as a pair, had seen this item on the poedb list of new unique items this league, and we agreed it was a very interesting item. Because we are delvers, we consistently use vaal haste and vaal grace to have an extra defense layer, and for some extra speed in delve. Normally, you can throw some flask effect on the aurabot to increase the effect of Soul Catcher, with some bloodstained sceptres with redeemer aura mods, and get a small window to have almost permanent vaal auras.

These rings drop from Atziri, and we THINK that they roll 3 mods from normal Atziri, with a chance for 4 mods when they drop from Uber Atziri, if not always 4 from Uber. When I saw you could have mods that helped you get a bigger window for perma vaal haste and vaal grace, I knew we had to try them out.

Here's the setup we came up with, that leads to over a second-long window between soul gain prevention ending, and the first vaal skill duration to end, which is vaal haste:

In the album above, my aurabot used vaal grace in the first ring, and vaal haste in the second ring. Now some explanation of why these mods, which will lead into the purpose of this post and the reason these rings are so good.

Ring #1: 30% reduced Soul Gain Prevention Duration, 30% less Souls per Use, Tailwind on Socketed Vaal Skill Use.

Ring #2: 30% reduced Soul Gain Prevention Duration, 30% less Souls per Use, 50% increased Aura Effect of Socketed Vaal Skills.

Notice that both rings have 30% reduced prevention duration, and 30% less soul cost. The first is required in combination with the unique quartz flask Soul Catcher to get a super low prevention time. Being an aurabot, he uses a Conqueror's Efficiency jewel to get some extra Reduced Reservation. As a byproduct, it messes with vaal aura timings a tiny bit. However, looking at these two screenshots, you can see there is a 1.46 second window to get souls through kills or the unique quartz flask, Soul Ripper.

The math is: Vaal Haste ends after 4.16 seconds. Vaal Grace, with the longer prevention time, locks souls out for 2.7 seconds. 4.16-2.7 = 1.46 seconds of window. This is plenty, because my aurabot uses a Soul Ripper, as he has no need of any defensive flasks as we are ZHP delving. Theoretically, even in map group play, you are getting enough souls from kills in that 1.46 seconds, to give full uptime. Don't forget that both his rings have the line that says they cost 30% less souls per use. This means that he only needs 35 souls per aura in the window, which adjusts based on which vaal auras you are using, including if you are only using one, which increased your window.

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Because ZHP delving considers movement speed the most important stat, we use the tailwind line on the Vaal Grace ring to get our aurabot 8% more movement speed, through tailwind's action speed buff. We don't need the 50% increased aura effect from the vaal haste ring, due to the fact the game has a hard limited dodge cap at 75% attack and spell dodge. Aurabots hit this mark very quickly, due to only needing 114% global aura effect to go from 35% to 75%. The aura effect on the vaal haste ring is a no brainer, since you can only get to a level 28-30 vaal haste, without it even being linked to awakened generosity, which doesn't even come close to touching giving the vaal haste an increase of 50%, not including aura effect from tree.

This combination of items on the aurabot, leads to the fastest pair of characters I've seen in delve that aren't using a Torrent's Reclamation. We don't care about the action speed increase from Torrent's, because my delve skill of choice is Penance Brand.

Here is my aurabot's profile, with our current ZHP setup being on the character sman_King:

If you made it this far, you may have taken a look at the mods that can appear on the rings yourself. If you haven't already, take a look now:

This leads me into the second portion of why this ring is so broken. Permanent uptime, and multiple uses of vaal skills that deal damage. Give you any 2017-2018 vibes? Is it time to bring Cutedog using vaal spark on 4 ascendancies back? Use a ring like this:

For those that can't click links, these rings have the mods: Socketed Vaal Skills deal 150% more Damage, 30% reduced Soul Gain Prevention Duration, and either Socketed Vaal Skills can store Souls for 1 additional Use or Socketed Vaal Skills require 30% less Souls per Use.

To start with the main concern people have had since Soul Catcher, Hazardous Research, other passive tree nodes, and ascendancies have been changed or nerfed. The mod on the ring that gives 30% reduced Soul Gain Prevention Duration is additive with the mod from the flask. Not only that, it is additive with modifiers to skill effect duration for vaal skills that have such a line in their description. This includes skills like Vaal Spark, Vaal Blight, Vaal BV, all Vaal auras, and others. This means if you have the skill in the ring, you have 30% from the mod, 40% multiplied by your flask effect, and whatever modifiers to skill effect duration you have from tree, jewels, or items.

You can get over 100% increased flask effect from tree alongside Pathfinder small nodes. This means there is so much flexibility when it comes to stacking reduced soul gain prevention duration. For example, you can do Vaal Spark with 0 second soul gain prevention time on any class. The math is as follows: 30% from ring, 15% from 1 maximum rolled(to leave the sparks on the ground longer) Hazardous Research, which leaves you with needing exactly 37.5% increased flask effect from any source to use a 40% reduced Soul Gain Prevention Duration rolled Soul Catcher. This can be done a couple ways, the way I chose to do is through the medium cluster jewel notable found on flask effect duration mediums, Spiked Concoction, which gives Alchemist's Genius for 20% flask effect. I combined this with 10% from Aqueous Accelerant by Pain Attunement, and 8% from a Conqueror's Potency to achieve 38% increased flask effect. This requires no flask effect from Pathfinder, and you can put a Hazardous Research anywhere in the top side of the tree, which you will probably be near, as I doubt anyone but the bravest of souls will be stuck in the bottom side of the tree trying to do perma Vaal Spark.

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Picture of 0 Soul Gain Prevention:

The second concern since Soul Catcher was nerfed, when GGG removed the line that said Vaal Skills used during flask effect have 25% reduced soul cost. This is alleviated by the mods of either Socketed Vaal Skills can store Souls for 1 additional Use or Socketed Vaal Skills require 30% less Souls per Use. You use one of these mods in combination with 40% total reduced soul cost per use from weapons, a mod you get from using a bloodstained fossil on a weapon, with either 2 weapons that each have 20%, or using a two hander with one 40% mod on it. The math for these mods is as follows:

30 base soul cost
30 * .7(ring with cost) * .6(weapons) = 12.6 cost, rounded up to 13 in game, 2.3 uses with 30 max souls.
30 * .6(weapons) = 18 cost, using a +1 use ring, 3.33 uses with 60 max souls.
30 * .7(ring with cost) * .6(weapons) = 12.6 cost rounded up to 13 in game, 4.61 uses with a +1 use ring giving 60 max souls.

Note: I did try annointing Tireless, found on the left side of the tree, for 6% reduced cost of skills. It does not affect vaal soul cost, where if it did, I would get the soul cost using the cost ring down to 11.3 souls which SHOULD round to 12, but it doesn't modify the soul cost. Unlucky.

Now that third line in the math is very interesting. It basically requires a 4 mod ring, and I've only ever seen 2 of said rings in league thus far. I own one of them. It looks like this:

It needs to be a 4mod like this ring, because the 150% more damage line is entirely necessary for the skill to do any significant amount of damage. I've had a lot of internal debate about which ring is best, and I've tried 3 4mod variants for Vaal Spark. The best feeling so far was the one in the picture above, however a good shout is this ring, which instead of +1 base use, has lucky damage with hits(very good for lightning skills, such as Spark):

I've determined being able to send out 2x as many vaal sparks feels better than having lucky damage. This is emphasized by the fact I've been testing out Zerphi's Heart using Vaal Spark, for insane cast speed to get the Vaal Sparks out, with like 10 active vaal sparks at once. You'd think that Soul Eater would make this build not work very well, since you wouldn't be able to gain souls back. However, it seems mods that read: #% chance for vaal skills to gain an additional soul on kill/per enemy shattered, or the flask Soul Ripper, bypass Soul Eater taking the vaal souls.

For my final test setup before releasing this full writeup is as follows:Skill: Vaal SparkRequired items: Soul Catcher with 40% reduced soul gain prevention, 40% reduced cost of vaal souls from weapon(s), Triumvirate Authority with 150% more damage, 30% reduced soul gain prevention, either 30% less souls or +1 base use.My class: DeadeyeMy preferred items: Zerphi's Heart, Soul Ripper, Chill of Corruption, Sacrificial Harvest, Shadows and Dust, 1x Call of the brotherhood, 2x rune daggers with high lightning to spells, bloodstained mod, multimodded with crit multi and spell damage and non-chaos as extra chaos.Setup: 6L normal Spark in chest, use to get souls in the beginning of the zone as well as help on single target with Soul Eater stacks. Use Soul Catcher, then use Vaal Spark. Zoom.

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Here is footage as proof of concept that it speed clears, this is early on on the Deadeye version, so manage expectations here:

The whole purpose of my setup is I wanted the fastest Park map clearer possible, as I needed a character to fill sulphite on. This accomplishes that. Due to the nature of the setup I described above, you can do Vaal Spark on any class, and I suggest Elementalist using Inpulsa chains alongside the the Aegis and golem nodes for more defenses. Other classes such as Inquisitor or Assassin are also good options for vaal spark.

There are many different varieties of setups you can use, however the best feeling to me was going Zerphi's Heart on anything. As my setup described above, you only need weapons, a flask, and a ring to make this build function, with a few options to get 37.5% flask effect from tree.

I haven't tested it, but I think the best setup is using a replica shroud of the lightless with 6 well rolled bloodstained abyss jewels, combined with the 2 unique jewels in tree, and maybe even 2 additional abyss jewels in weapons if they can be fit, for a total of 60-70% chance for additional soul per kill, and 50% chance for additional soul per enemy shattered. This should alleviate the need for Soul Ripper, and should clear maps insanely well. If you throw on a headhunter, ultimatums because a breeze when using a squishy class like ranger, as there are so many rares you should have an insane amount of buffs. If you're using a headhunter, you could 100% drop zerphi's heart as you probably steal a soul eater buff anyways, so you can pick a different amulet option for damage, tank, or utility. There are so many options here with only needing 4 items in the core build.

I'm sure there are a few other ways to use this ring as a utility ring, maybe for some extra vaal skill clear on top of a build that focuses entirely on the main skill, rather than what I've done here which is pour all my resources into the vaal skill while having a meager 6L to start the map and finish the boss when I have 100 stacks of soul eater from zerphi's heart. There are many skills to test, many classes to try out, many weapons to craft, and many flasks to use. It feels really good to have vaal skills back on the menu, and I can't wait for you guys to try them out for yourselves.

I look forward to seeing what the masses can come up with using this information! I'm including an album of pictures of all of the viable damage rings so that you can pick and choose what to use:


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