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Scourge - Condi DPS

The community gave this build a rating, making it top-tier: Great

Focused on: Condition damage and Utility

Designed for: Raids and Fractals

Expansions required: Path of Fire Builds

Difficulty:
Easy
This build was last updated on June 20, 2024 and is up to date for the June 25, 2024 patch.

Overview

A condition DPS and utility build for Scourge. This build provides strong sustained DPS and bonus AoE cleave with Epidemic. It also provides incidental support for its subgroup by generating Might Might, cleansing conditions, and overhealing allies with barrier.

Scourge excels in encounters where it can play to its strengths, namely Epidemic and defensive support. It also deals all its damage from range and isn't too reliant on Might Might or healing, which makes it good for roles such as flak kiting at Sabetha.


Skill Bar

Scourge-skillbar-bg.png
Scepter/Torch
Pistol/X
Utility


Non-SotO Weapons

Players without Secrets of the Obscure cannot run Pistol, therefore they should just leave the second mainhand slot empty, and can take a utility offhand weapon such as Warhorn.


Skill Variants

Healing

  • Signet of Vampirism is lower healing, but higher DPS than Summon Blood Fiend. Be aware that it will hit the closest enemy rather than your target, so in some encounters it might end up being unreliable.
  • Well of Blood is the largest personal heal if you'd rather have safety than damage, and can heal allies without needing a target.


Utility
If using Pistol then swap out Signet of Undeath, otherwise swap out Summon Shadow Fiend

  • In fights with shorter phases, or with extra sources of life force, you will do more damage with Signet of Spite (use off cooldown).
  • Epidemic if you need cleave. Even post-nerf it is a strong skill.
  • Trail of Anguish If you need Stability Stability.
  • Corrosive Poison Cloud if projectile absorb is needed.
  • Sand Swell - 900 range portal, useful for mobility on certain fights.
  • Spectral Grasp is a 1200 range 5-target pull.

Never swap out Blood Is Power.


Elite

  • Summon Flesh Golem for more CC. It's a fairly large DPS loss to bring, but can be helpful in particular on encounters where the boss is unlikely to stand still long enough for all your pulses of Plaguelands to hit.


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Specializations

Specialization Variants

Taking Blood Magic instead of Soul Reaping is a major DPS loss, but provides more support through minor healing and Transfusion. Should only be considered in training runs or struggling groups where you're desperate for the sustain.

  • Blood Bond is higher DPS and offers a tiny bit of group sustain, but if you need Blood Magic you probably need Ritual of Life.
  • If taking Ritual of Life, consider using Well of Blood as your healing skill.


Equipment

Head
Viper
Shoulders
Viper
Chest
Viper
Hands
Viper
Legs
Viper
Feet
Viper
Backpiece
Viper
Accessory
Viper
Accessory
Viper
Amulet
Viper
Ring
Viper
Ring
Viper
Scepter
Viper
Torch
Viper
Sigil
Sigil
Pistol
Viper
Sigil
Rune
x6
Infusion
x17
Infusion
x1
Relic


Relic Variants

  • Relic of the Fractal is nearly identical damage and is easier to trigger, though Akeem is AoE.
  • Relic of the Aristocracy is the best option for players that don't own Secrets of the Obscure.
    • In this case, you should use (or ascended alternatives) as your food.


Consumables

Food

  • if using Relic of Akeem
  • (or ascended alternatives) if using Relic of the Aristocracy.


Utility

  • or


Usage

Rotation Fundamentals

Unlike other Necromancer specialisations, its shroud skills are always available. This means you will be using your skills off cooldown according to a priority list. The rotation becomes more structured for players that own Secrets of the Obscure, as pistol becomes a strong choice due to its ability to trigger Relic of Akeem practically off cooldown, introducing a weapon swap into the rotation.


Shades
Your first shroud ability is Manifest Sand Shade. This drops a short-duration Sand Shade at the target location. For as long as a shade is active, your other shroud abilities will happen around your shade as well as you (an enemy can only be hit once if both you and your shade are in range). You want to maintain a shade on top of your target at all times, both to activate Sand Sage and to maintain damage if you have to move out of melee range.

All your shroud skills deal damage when activated, but Desert Shroud and Nefarious Favor deal more (the latter via Sadistic Searing). Your other two shades can be used for utility: Sand Cascade provides AoE Barrier to nearby allies, and Garish Pillar inflicts Fear Fear on nearby enemies.

All shroud skills consume life force to use. In general you will only have enough to use Desert Shroud and Nefarious Favor off cooldown, but some encounters will have extra sources of life force that allow you to spam the other abilities for more damage.


Life Force
Life force is a resource based upon your max health. Each shroud skill consumes a fixed amount to use, while certain skills generate an amount based on a percentage of max life force. A huge amount of your damage comes from your shroud abilities, so using such skills frequently is essential.

There are four skills that generate life force:

  • Devouring Darkness, Weeping Shots, Vile Blast Harrowing Wave - weapon skills that are also used for damage.
  • Haunt - the active ability of your Shadow Fiend (if using). The skill has no cast time, but your Shadow Fiend will take a moment to respond.
  • Signet of Undeath - kept passive, this skill generates life force every three seconds.


Simplified Rotations

While scourge is conceptually simple, its damage isn't really concentrated on a small number of abilities, so it remains quite fast-paced even when simplified. Fortunately, dropping one or other of the mainhand weapons isn't a huge DPS loss. The higher damage option will be to camp Pistol/Torch.


Opener

  1. Manifest Sand Shade Have 1 down before the fight starts
  2. Blood Is Power and Desert Shroud
  3. Plaguelands and Nefarious Favor to cleanse one of the conditions
  4. Weeping Shots
  5. Vile Blast
  6. Harrowing Wave
  7. Oppressive Collapse


Rest of the Rotation
Building to the full rotation is just a matter of adding in more skills according to the priority list below. The first six items in the list are particularly important.

  1. Maintain a single shade
  2. Desert Shroud and combine with Blood Is Power
  3. Weeping Shots (and Vile Blast if using Relic of Akeem)
  4. Nefarious Favor
  5. Plaguelands
  6. All other weapon skills
  7. Haunt or Signet of Spite (whichever you're using)
    • You could bring Summon Flesh Golem and leave Summon Shadow Fiend passive for a simpler rotation, but this would be a fairly large DPS loss


Video guide (by Masel)


Scepter-only Rotation

Players without Secrets of the Obscure are not able to use Pistol, so the rotation is inherently simplified.


Opener

  1. Manifest Sand Shade Have 1 down before the fight starts
  2. Plaguelands and Nefarious Favor to cleanse one of the conditions
  3. Blood Is Power and Desert Shroud
  • There is a 1/2 chance that you will not cleanse the self-Poison Poison from Plaguelands, which in turn means that there is a 2/3 chance that you will not transfer either the powerful Bleeding Bleeding or Torment Torment from Blood Is Power. This is annoying, but there's a good chance your support will cleanse the conditions for you, and if you can pre-cast the skill before the phase starts the expected DPS will be higher regardless.


DPS Priority

After the opener, just use skills as they become available, with the following priority:

  1. Desert Shroud off cooldown with Blood Is Power after
  2. Nefarious Favor off cooldown
  3. Devouring Darkness
  4. Manifest Sand Shade making sure to keep 1 shade up
  5. Harrowing Wave
  6. Haunt and Plaguelands off cooldown
  7. Oppressive Collapse
  8. Grasping Dead
  9. Scepter autoattack chain, making sure to get the 3rd attack


Video example


Rotation

With weapon swapping, it becomes more of a standard rotation than a priority list:

Opener

Start on Pistol

  1. Manifest Sand Shade Have 1 down before the fight starts
  2. Plaguelands and Nefarious Favor to cleanse one of the conditions
  3. Blood Is Power and Desert Shroud
  4. Weeping Shots
  5. Vile Blast - Weeping Shots means that there will be enough Torment Torment on your target to trigger Relic of Akeem
  6. Weapon swap Weapon swap
  • There is a 1/2 chance that you will not cleanse the self-Poison Poison from Plaguelands, which in turn means that there is a 2/3 chance that you will not transfer either the powerful Bleeding Bleeding or Torment Torment from Blood Is Power. This is annoying, but there's a good chance your support will cleanse the conditions for you, and if you can pre-cast the skill before the phase starts the expected DPS will be higher regardless.


Sceptre Loop

  1. Devouring Darkness and Grasping Dead
  2. Autoattack and use Torch skills off cooldown
  3. Devouring Darkness and Grasping Dead
  4. Weapon swap Weapon swap


Pistol Loop

Open and close this loop with Weeping Shots, and use Vile Blast twice to trigger Relic of Akeem

  1. Weeping Shots
  2. Vile Blast
  3. Autoattack and use Weeping Shots and Torch skills off cooldown
  4. Vile Blast
  5. Weeping Shots
  6. Weapon swap Weapon swap


  • Use Nefarious Favor and Desert Shroud off cooldown - make sure to combine Desert Shroud with Blood Is Power to transfer the self-conditions.
  • Use Torch skills and utility skills off cooldown, though they are lower priority than weapon skills 2 and 3 (both weapons).


Video example


General Tips

  • Use Desert Shroud Blood Is Power wherever possible to transfer the self-condis to your target via Plague Sending.
  • Don't let Blood Is Power reach maximum charges.
  • Try to finish your autoattack chains.
  • If using Epidemic, use it whenever there are enemies near the main target.
  • Feel free to use Nefarious Favor, Sand Cascade, or Garish Pillar if life force is over capping, or to support your teammates with cleanses, barriers, and CC.
    • Be aware that in very low-pressure encounters, too much barrier can actually end up robbing druids of CA generation.
  • The cast time on Plaguelands is pretty long, so it is efficient to "precast" the skill just before the boss becomes vulnerable.
  • On encounters where the boss becomes Exposed Exposed, you can do a huge amount of damage by lining this up with Plaguelands.
    • Ideally you want Plaguelands to be finishing its 10th pulse as the boss becomes broken, which usually means casting it at the start of the phase, or as soon as you see the defiance bar appears.
  • Changes in attributes such as condi damage can change which condis are transferred first via Plague Sending.


Breakbar

  • Oppressive Collapse
  • Your best option without losing DPS are soft CCs such as cripple, blindness, and fear from Garish Pillar.
  • Summon Flesh Golem is one of the strongest crowd control skills the necromancer has, but you give up Plaguelands by taking it.
  • In emergencies, you can swap to warhorn for Wail of Doom.


Pylon Kiting

Scourge is one of the classes best suited to Pylon Kiting at the Qadim the Peerless encounter. You should make the following modifications to the build:


Skills

  • You probably want to change the healing skill to something such as Sand Flare as Qadim will be out of range of the passive lifesteal of Signet of Vampirism.
  • Replace Summon Shadow Fiend with Sand Swell so that you can reach orbs quickly.
  • Summon Flesh Golem is nice to have as you will rarely be in range to use Plaguelands. This allows you to help CC your pylon, as well as any distortions that aren't taken care of.


Traits
Trait options will depend on the amount of sustain you feel you need to keep yourself alive:

  • The most aggressive option is to run the Blood Magic specialization as described above. Using Garish Pillar off cooldown should be enough to keep you alive if no orbs are dropped.
  • Alternatively (or perhaps in addition to, if you really need the healing), taking Parasitic Contagion in Curses provides a good amount of sustain provided you are able to maintain damage on Qadim.


Gear

  • Due to a quirk of how the pylon's boons work, it won't provide Might Might if you already have it - which you will, thanks to Blood Is Power and Oppressive Collapse. This will actually leave your Might Might lower than on other classes, so replacing the Sigil of Superior Sigil of Bursting with a Sigil of Superior Sigil of Strength can make up for it.
  • If you are running Blood Magic, you may find that you struggle with life force. In this case it might be advisable to have a Focus as well as a Torch so that you can hit the boss with Soul Grasp.


Encounter-specific Tips

Spirit Vale

Vale Guardian Toggle
  • You can use Sand Swell to allow greens to teleport to it.
  • If skipping greens, you can help the group by providing barrier with Desert Empowerment and Sand Cascade just before the green hits.
  • Epidemic can be used to copy Chill Chill, Cripple Cripple or Immobilize Immobilize to nearby Seekers, keeping them away from the group. With multiple necros you can also "bounce" the conditions from the boss with one Epidemic, then having another use it on the seeker, copying them back to the boss for big damage.
    • If you use Garish Pillar in the middle of the Epidemic cast, you can also copy Fear Fear keeping the seekers away for even longer.

For more information, see our Vale Guardian Guide.

Spirit Woods Toggle
  • Abuse the Adrenaline Mushrooms as much as possible.
  • You can use Sand Swell to allow fast traveling for you and your group.
  • Trail of Anguish might be useful if your supports aren't providing Stability Stability.

For more information, see our Spirit Woods Guide.

Gorseval the Multifarious Toggle
  • Use Epidemic for the adds.
    • You can use Epidemic to clear orbs as well.
  • Use Summon Flesh Golem if cc is needed.
  • Use your barrier abilities in the cc phase to support the healers.

For more information, see our Gorseval the Multifarious Guide.

Bandit event Toggle
  • Epidemic can be pretty useful here.
  • Trail of Anguish might be useful if your supports aren't providing Stability Stability.
Sabetha the Saboteur Toggle
  • Epidemic is extremely useful against the turrets and adds.
    • If you save it when the minibosses are active, you can immediately use Epidemic to copy conditions to Sabetha when the minibosses reach 25% health.

For more information, see our Sabetha the Saboteur Guide.


Salvation Pass

Slothasor Toggle
  • Nefarious Favor converts conditions to boons on an extremely low cd - useful for if you get Fear Feared.
  • Take advantage of Epidemic to kill the Slublings. Pay attention to not kill your teammate who is clearing the mushrooms!
  • You can place Corrosive Poison Cloud slightly on the boss and to the center of the room.

For more information, see our Slothasor Guide.

Bandit Trio Toggle
  • As a fully ranged class, you are an ideal candidate to throw kegs when Narella spawns.

For more information, see our Bandit Trio Guide.

Matthias Gabrel Toggle
  • Nefarious Favor converts conditions to boons on an extremely low cd.
  • Epidemic is not needed, so you could take one of the following:
    • You can use Sand Swell to teleport out for poison or corruption.
    • Plague Signet is a stunbreak, but more importantly it can pull a huge number of Poison Poison stacks onto you, which you can then transfer to Matthias for extra damage.
    • Spectral Grasp is very handy if you are struggling with cc - if you stand inside the sacrifice's hitbox then the skill will multihit them.
  • Matthias will be moving about constantly, which can make Plaguelands unreliable. Given the importance of breaking the sacrifice, Summon Flesh Golem may be the better option.

For more information, see our Matthias Gabrel Guide.


Stronghold of the Faithful

Siege the Stronghold (Escort) Toggle

For more information, see our Escort Guide.

Keep Construct Toggle

Keep Construct takes extra power damage, so Scourge is very suboptimal here, however:

  • Epidemic makes killing projections a breeze.

For more information, see our Keep Construct Guide.

Twisted Castle Toggle
  • Trail of Anguish is worth taking to reduce general annoyance from the various White Mantle CCs.

For more information, see our Twisted Castle Guide.

Xera Toggle
  • If you are at full health, then barrier will prevent you from being downed while standing on the buttons on the "puzzle towers".
  • Nefarious Favor converts conditions to boons on an extremely low cd.
  • Use Epidemic to kill adds and shards.
  • If Xera is not close enough to shards for Epidemic to hit, then drop a Manifest Sand Shade on each one you want to clear and use Desert Shroud.
    • In an emergency, you can also Epidemic off one shard to others once you've build up some conditions with Desert Shroud and other shade abilities.

For more information, see our Xera Guide.


Bastion of the Peninent

Cairn the Indomitable Toggle
  • Corrosive Poison Cloud can be positioned such that it hits the boss while blocking (some) projectiles.
  • You could also bring Trail of Anguish to provide some Stability Stability to prevent the float from missing a green.

For more information, see our Cairn the Indomitable Guide.

Mursaat Overseer Toggle
  • Use Epidemic to kill the scouts as they move in - make sure they are in range. If you will not be able to kill a scout before it turns into a soldier, hold Epidemic for when the soldier moves into the group.

For more information, see our Mursaat Overseer Guide.

Samarog Toggle
  • Spears can be killed with Epidemic or by dropping your shades on them.

For more information, see our Samarog Guide.

Deimos Toggle
  • You can drop a shade on the hand kiter to provide some barrier if you are worried about them.
  • When returning from split phases, the dark Sauls do not clear conditions so you can immediately use Epidemic on them to copy conditions to Deimos.
    • If they are taking a long time to die, you can then Epidemic back off Deimos. This can be particularly useful when the second miniboss splits in four.
  • Otherwise, Epidemic can be used to kill Prides and Greeds. Be aware that there are a lot of valid targets for epidemic to hit, so you may wish to wait until the Prides are fairly close in the hopes they are prioritised.

For more information, see our Deimos Guide.


Hall of Chains

Soulless Horror Toggle
  • Coordinate with the player knocking the Tormented Dead away regarding when they want you to use Epidemic. Being too early or too late can be a disaster.
  • You can use Epidemic at the start to kill wurms, but make sure you have it ready for when the first Tormented Dead spawns.
  • If you use Garish Pillar as you cast Epidemic it will copy Fear Fear to the Tormented Dead, keeping them away from the group and giving the knocker more time.
  • Corrosive Poison Cloud can be very useful in the challenge mode, as wurms will constantly respawn and their projectile attacks are very painful - as wurms will be constantly dying your life force shouldn't suffer from dropping Signet of Undeath either.
  • Spam Nefarious Favor to clear condis from the group.
  • Wall RNG means that the boss may be constantly moved out of Plaguelands. Given that failing the CC is an instant wipe, Summon Flesh Golem is quite useful here (as long as your knocker doesn't mistake it for a Tormented Dead}}.

For more information, see our Soulless Horror Guide.

River of Souls Toggle
  • You won't be able to contribute much damage on the river, so taking Blood Magic might be helpful to pick up anyone who gets downed.

For more information, see our River of Souls Guide.

Statues of Grenth Toggle
  • Barrier is handy to prevent damage from taking greens at the Broken King. You can drop your shades on distant players to provide support without endangering yourself.
  • Keep using Epidemic at the Eater of Souls encounter - the spirit horde hurts more than you'd expect.
  • DO NOT use Oppressive Collapse, Charge (necromancer), Wail of Doom or Fear Fear on the eyes, as they will overwrite the Daze Daze from orb detonations. Basically just avoid all your CC.

For more information, see our Statues of Grenth Guide.

Dhuum Toggle
  • You can use Nefarious Favor at every Greater Death Mark to convert the Torment Torment.
  • Sand Swell can allow you to break shackles very quickly by teleporting away from the group - you can even try to pick up the mechanic deliberately by staying as close to the middle of Dhuum's hitbox as you can (without ending up in front of him).
    • Before shackles begin appearing at 60%, you can also use Sand Swell to help with bombs - either by using it yourself or providing a portal for the player with the bomb. This will allow the bomb player to greed for DPS by staying on the boss for longer without endangering the group. If you are providing the portal for another player, make sure you quickly take the portal back so you aren't standing next to the bomb when it explodes.
  • If Greater Death Mark is about to happen, you can delay Devouring Darkness to immediately start stripping boons from Dhuum.

For more information, see our Dhuum Guide.


Mythwright Gambit

Conjured Amalgamate Toggle

For more information, see our Conjured Amalgamate Guide.

Sorting and Appraisal Toggle

For more information, see our Sorting and Appraisal Guide.

Largos Assassins Toggle
  • A lot of attacks apply Chill Chill and Slow Slow at Largos, so make liberal use of Nefarious Favor
  • Both bosses like to move about a lot, making Plaguelands Unreliable, so Summon Flesh Golem may be the better option.

For more information, see our Largos Assassins Guide.

Qadim Toggle
  • You can use Garish Pillar to Fear Fear any lava elementals that get too close to Qadim in the burn phases.
  • Epidemic is useful not just for clearing elementals, but for dealing with the additional destroyers that spawn in the second phase, and can even be used to epi between the two wyverns once they on adjacent platforms.

For more information, see our Qadim Guide.


The Key of Ahdashim

Cardinal Sabir Toggle
  • Epidemic is useless in the normal mode of this fight, but incredible in the challenge mode for clearing the wisps that spawn on the platform.
  • Corrosive Poison Cloud could be taken to provide some extra safety once wisps start spawning below 40%.
  • While you could bring Summon Flesh Wurm to skip the shockwaves, the DPS gain from retaining your Violent Currents is usually outweighed by missing the extra DPS from Summon Shadow Fiend.

For more information, see our Cardinal Sabir Guide.

Cardinal Adina Toggle
  • Corrosive Poison Cloud could be used to protect your group from the hands in the split phase.

For more information, see our Cardinal Adina Guide.

Qadim the Peerless Toggle
  • Epidemic could be taken if you are having trouble with the distortions in the final phases.
  • If you don't trust your group to provide Stability Stability, do it yourself with Trail of Anguish

If you are pylon kiting:

  • You will need to take Sand Swell to pick up orbs.
    • The range feels very short when there is magma between you and the drop location - you will probably need to step outside your pylon slightly to ensure your safety, so don't be too slow.
  • As you can't reach Qadim with Harrowing Wave while at the pylon, you could take offhand focus instead of warhorn to generate some extra life force with Soul Grasp
  • Make sure to keep a shade on Qadim at all times as your shade abilities won't hit him otherwise.
    • If you do this, be sure to also use Spinal Shivers once Qadim starts eating pylons, to keep stripping his boons.
  • You have a few options to sustain yourself - what works best will depend upon you and the speed of your group:
    • You can run Rune of Superior Rune of Tormenting.
    • You can take Parasitic Contagion.
    • You can run Blood Magic and spam Garish Pillar on yourself.

For more information, see our Qadim the Peerless Guide.


Ratings

This build has a rating of 5 stars based on 6 votes.
Log in or register to rate this build.
4 stars
OfficerAndyGentleman gave this build 4 stars • April 2024
One of the slowest ramping DPS builds in the game, and long-term damage isn't that high either. But it makes up for it by being fully ranged and so being easy to maintain high DPS uptime on, and bringing a good level of QoL from shades and utility skills.
5 stars
MechaOG gave this build 5 stars • May 2021
With the recent changes to Torment, it has gained quite a bit of boost in DPS as many bosses do not move. This boost has brought Condi Scourge on par with many other builds. While it is still on the lower end of the damage, it is a more viable build to run now. It is easy to run for beginners and gives them an opportunity to experience condition damage playstyle, without lacking far behind. In proper statics, other condi's such as Renegade still outperform by a mile in terms of damage. Additionally, it has a nice utility built-in. Players can provide a barrier to ease a little load off of druids during various high damage pressure such as Gorseval's Ghastly Rampage.
5 stars
Chinkeeyong gave this build 5 stars • September 2018
A great condition DPS build. In disorganized groups the utility brought by this build is often life-saving and worth more than other, higher DPS classes. Meanwhile, Scourge brings enough unique utility with barriers and Epidemic that it can even be of use to highly experienced groups.
5 stars
The Shade Reaver gave this build 5 stars • October 2017
I've been using this build for quite some time now. I find that the DPS and survivability while using this build have been really good. I mainly use this for fractals and I tend to be one of the harder hitters as well as one who can stay alive longer than others on my team. Even if I do get downed, because of the good and sustained condition damage, I can bounce back up a couple times. This build also works well for dungeons. Underwater does not work as well with this build since your utility skills are limited. Instead, you may want to use a reaper build for more difficult underwater content. The necromancer is my favorite class now, influenced by the Scrouge specialization itself as well as this build
5 stars
Ashcraven gave this build 5 stars • October 2017
Survivability and dps are both great with this build
5 stars
GreenyNeko gave this build 5 stars • September 2017
Now with my gear set and some comparison run through on-paper damage calculation I'm really enjoying this build and dealing amazing damage with it. It really works well in raid and fractals even with several scourges in the group. The condition conversion is helpful in many cases open world, fractals (especially afflicted ones) or several raid bosses like slothasor or xera. The ability to choose healing makes it easier if you have no druid in group or for harder or solo (open world) content. A down side is underwater fighting, reaper makes much more sense there, though there's only one underwater boss and hardly any underwater content. Overall great build :)

Comments

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