Tossing around the chaotic energies of the universe can be dangerous if you don't know what you're doing. Alright, alright—it's still really dangerous even when you do know what you're doing. But with the help of this guide, you can make it more dangerous for your enemies than it is for yourself and your friends. And that's really what matters in the end, isn't it?
Like hot chocolate and marshmallows, our Embermage guide is best-used in conjunction with our Torchlight 2 Class Guide , which will be updated with new builds as we hatch them.
By default, Torchlight 2 only allows you to respec your last three skill points (at a steep cost). Thus, you may already be so far in that these builds are impossible to use. Luckily, if you want the freedom to redistribute all of your skill points at any time, the game supports it. You'll just have to follow a few steps. NOTE: This will give your character a visible cheater flag beside your name in multiplayer, just like editing the stats file does. Some people have a problem with that. Others don't. Just a fair warning.
Got it? Good.
All of the following builds have been tested on Veteran difficulty.
Utter chaos. This build will give your enemies nowhere to run and nowhere to hide, flooding the screen with torrential damage in enough shapes and colors to make the National Weather Service throw up their hands in defeat. It lacks stun attacks, but you should be doing enough damage over a wide enough area that your crowd control is essentially: "The crowd is now dead."
I like staves, but this build can work just as well with dual wands. Go with whatever will get you the most damage output and mana sustainability. You'll need a lot of mana.
Remember three seconds ago when I said you'll need a lot of mana? Still true. Put at least three stat points into Focus every level until it gets up around 90 (ignoring gear). The remaining two points can be distributed however you want to shore up your other stats: don't let Vitality get too far below two thirds of your total level if you don't just really enjoy dying. Dexterity gives you dodge chance, which never hurts. And strength can come in handy if and when you do run out of mana and have to whack things.
Your core skill starting off is going to be Prismatic Bolt (Storm tree). Combine it with some points in Charge Mastery (Inferno tree) and Hailstorm (Frost tree). Once you hit 14, grab Thunder Locus (Storm). By combining it with Hailstorm , you can start to create vast areas of static damage, or layer them to spell impending doom for everything in a small area. All the while, flood the affected region with Prismatic Bolts .
Any spare points you find yourself with can go into Elemental Attunement (Inferno) and Lightning Brand (Storm). Avoid Shocking Burst . As far as I can tell, across all four classes, it is the most useless skill in the game.
Other than picking up Death's Bounty (Storm), which you should prioritize immediately until it hits Tier 2, and Shockbolts (Storm), this is a good time to focus on your passives. Lightning Brand in particular should get some attention, as you'll be replacing Prismatic Bolt with Shockbolts in many scenarios. If you're okay with using respec potions, I would even go so far as to pull all of your points out of Prismatic Bolts once Shockbolts unlocks, and put the latter on right mouse. There will still be some times when Prismatic Bolts are better, such as a large group of enemies in a very wide open area, though, so it's up to you.
Free points can be dropped into Prismatic Rift (Storm), especially if you're having survivability issues.
As you continue to max everything mentioned above, you might as well pick up Firestorm (Inferno) to complete your Raining Death From the Sky Trifecta. Because why the hell not, right? This is also the point at which I'd commit to either wands or staves (if you haven't already) and start putting points in the corresponding passive. Staff Mastery (Frost) will get you more bang for your buck out of your elemental attacks, while Wand Chaos (Storm) will add more insanity to every battle.
Beyond that, you could invest some more in the Frost tree and in passives like Ice Brand , but only if you've taken enough freezing skills to make it worth the points. Shocking Orb (Storm) is another fun one to mess around with, sending it lumbering through your thundering killzone before flooding its wake with Shockbolts . Try to always live by the rule of thumb that if there is anything on screen that is not being electrocuted, frozen, burned, or killed in some other horrible way, you're probably doing it wrong.