Q1: I'm trying out a caustic arrow bow build atm, and I've been enjoying the leveling, but I've just unlocked scourge arrow, and after reading the wiki on both, I'm just wondering on exactly what the difference is? Does it look like scourge arrow is just a channeling version of caustic arrow? Please correct me if I'm wrong, thanks!
A1: Caustic arrow leaves behind a ground dot, this dot does not stack. It also scales with gem levels rather than weapon damage, and the initial arrow doesn't care about much.
Scourge arrow is a channeled bow skill that fires a single charged arrow, leaving behind some pods that explode and unleash some thorns, and each pod is able but won't always hit the same target allowing a shotgun effect. This skill does scale with weapon damage, does not have a damage over time component by default (unless you scale poison, but it's still different from caustic arrow), and not so much by gem levels.
Q2: I've built a pretty successful EQ/Staff/Slayer. Have nearly max block with glancing blows. Dps is pretty solid, but I have a spare 6 link. Would the damage be decent to slot in riposte/vengeance and 4 support gems? Is there something I could slot in there with or without the counter attack gems to increase survivability? I already have a CWDT setup for curse and guard skill.
Specifically, something to survive the first second of combat. I have ~58% leech with overleech, buffed fortify, endurance charges. But none of that's up until I get dmg rolling. Almost all deaths have been from getting one shotted at the start of combat.
A2: Infernal Cry is neat in a 6 link, you can support the Exerted attacks, and the Combust (the first exerted attack) with all sorts of stuff. Endurance charge on stun support for extra defense and a boost to CWDT/IC if you don't have another source.
Maim support but only for the de-buff. Onslaught support has a higher chance than Onslaught jewels. Combustion support for the -19% fire resist. Mana leech if you're not full conversion. Curse on hit support if you can't get another source. Second Wind for 2 casts and cool down to make up for only lasting 4 hits. This is mandatory if you don't spec into warcry nodes. There are probably more that I haven't played with yet. But as of the last patch, Fortify support no longer works.
Q3: I'm just starting up again on ps4. I have a level 19 witch in the standard league using minions for my style: zombies, skeletons, flaming skulls, support on the skulls that summons ghosts. Basically, I never get hit. I feel pretty strong. I'm in the forest area now. I just completed the white beast quest in the den.
My main question is, what should I be looting so that I'm good later on in the game? Currently, I mostly just loot armor upgrades or golds to sell and all the various orbs and scrolls.
A3: Loot is irrelevant for later during leveling. Just pick up what you feel might be an upgrade, and maybe rares/unique to sell for PoE Currency.
It's normal to feel strong with minions during leveling—you'll need to focus later. Pick a minion you prefer and look for a guide online about them—that way, you'll get an idea of how to build your character and won't waste investment.
To answer your question more directly, if an item isn't useful for you, its worthless during leveling. In this game, more than 99% of what drops is trash. You pretty much want to check for currency, uniques, and some rare PoE Items of a specific base, but only if you're doing high level enough content(83+, you're not there yet).
So yeah, pick up currency and items that are an upgrade for you, but don't worry about not picking up every item you see.
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