The most common way to level an Assassin is with a build based around the Wake of Fire. Fire Blast (the most powerful early AoE skill out of all Classes) and Burst of Speed (buff for upkeep) are common supplements to this build. Often, the build is carried into Nightmare difficulty, until level 32-35, where you can respec into the Lightning Sentry Build that uses the deadly Lightning Sentry and Death Sentry combination.
Leveling General Tips
- It’s worth repeating that your Trap laying speed is affected by the speed of your weapon attack, not your cast rate. Early on, find your self a dagger or buy it from Charsi in town — if you were wielding something heavy and slow before, you will feel the difference.
- Don’t underestimate your low-level skills. Fire Blast is powerful enough to have a powerful build centered upon it — just bunch enemies into groups and spam the skill to dispatch of them quickly. In the same vein, Wake of Inferno is not better than Wake of Fire. Death Sentry requires the Lightning Sentry of the Lightning Sentry Build or Dragon Talon of the Kicksin to work effectively.
- No more than 2 Wake of Fire traps can damage a single enemy at once. Don’t put down more than two. In contrast, stack Lightning Sentry traps, up to 4-5 on top of one another, to get the most damage from them. Put down 1-2 Death Sentry, furthest from the enemy crowd.
- Burst of Speed is a great buff to repeatedly re-cast on yourself: it increases you attack and run/walk speed for a few minutes, and makes a big difference in your damage per second and ability to dodge projectiles from enemies.
- Remember about the Skill Synergies: when you have surplus points (you can’t level your main skill until you reach higher level), invest them into Skills that give bonuses to the skill you are using. When using Wake of Fire you will be investing a lot into your Fire Blast.
- Runeword Leaf will be great for supplementing your leveling build because of its bonuses to Fire Skills. By repeatedly killing the Countess from Act 1 you can farm Runes for Runewords like Leaf and Stealth early on.
- Strength: As needed for gear (25 for the Heavy Belt early on), very rarely above 60 in the endgame.
- Dexterity: Not required when Leveling. Get as much as needed for gear later in the game.
- Vitality: As many points as possible.
- Energy: Preferably 0, but can be higher than that to support early game with an aim to respec.
- After you Respec at level 32-35, leave 47 points in Strength (for Ancient’s Pledge). The rest can go into Vitality at least until you hit level 75.
- Main Hands: Bartuc’s Cut-Throat
- Swap: Heart of the Oak and Spirit
- Helm: Guillaume’s Face
- Body Armor: Skin of the Vipermagi
- Gloves: Magefist
- Belt: String of Ears
- Boots: Gore Rider
- Amulet: The Eye of Etlich
- Rings: 2 x Raven Frost
- Charms: Any charms which boost Damage, Attack Speed, Hit Recovery, or cover your Resists are useful.