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This is a toggle feat. When you toggle it on, your basic attack, regardless of weapons held (except for wands), becomes a ranged magical attack that hits a single enemy. It does not cost spell points or hit points; only time, much like swinging a weapon. However, unlike swinging a weapon, the Blast does not benefit from the attack speed boost of a Haste spell.
Standard Warlock's Eldritch Blast deals 1d8 Force damage at level 1, and increases by +1d8 at Warlock level 4, 8, 12, 16, and 20; for a total of 6d8 at level 20. Acolyte of the Skin gets a different progression: 2d8 Force damage at level 1 and an additional +2d8 at levels 6, 12 and 18 for a total of 8d8 at level 18.
- Eldritch Blast damage scales with a percentage of Spell Power.
- Eldritch Blast criticals are based on magical stats: Critical Spell Chance and Critical Spell Damage.
- No save.
- Epic feats Epic Eldritch Blast (max +7d8) and Epic Pact Dice (max +6d6) increase your damage.
Each Warlock must select a Pact at level 1. This is another a toggle feat.
- Standard Warlock's Eldritch Blast deals an additional 1d6 damage for each even Warlock level, for a total of 10d6 at level 20.
- Acolyte of the Skin gets a different progression: +2d6 Pact dice at level 1, an additional +2d6 Pact dice at levels 6, 12 and 18 for a total of 8d6 at level 18.
Each pact deals different damage type and can be mitigated by a saving throw:
- Fey: Sonic / Reflex half, Evasion negates
- Fiend / True Fiend: Fire / Fortitude half
- Great Old One: Acid / Will half
- Celestial: Electric / Will half (Bug: Patch notes say Will save, In game feat description says it goes off of Reflex Save)
- Abyss: Negative / Fortitude half
- Carceri Storm: Cold / Reflex half (Bug: Patch notes say Reflex save, In game goes off of Will Save)
Eldritch Blast is treated as a 9th level spell. The DC (for the pact damage) is the same as a ninth level evocation spell: 19 + charisma modifier + evocation focus effects. It is not affected by metamagic feats. Spell Resistance does not stop Eldritch Blast, and neither does Antimagic. You move at full speed while casting Eldritch Blast, unlike most spell casting.
Note that if you equip a wand or scroll, Eldritch Blast of any form other than the auto-pulsing Aura will be disabled and cannot be fired until you unequip the wand/scroll (note that you can hotkey your main hand weapon to do this switch back quickly). The Eldritch Blast will still be active, and can be immediately fired the moment the wand/scroll is unequipped/replaced. The rare exception to this is some non-combat scrolls like a Teleport scroll, you will still be able to fire the blast while holding it.
Also note, (possibly a bug) the Eldritch Blast cannot damage certain destructible terrain barriers, such as a wall of vines or a spider web across an entire passageway. You will need to fully deactivate the Blast and hit these barriers with your weapons to destroy them, then reactivate it afterwards.
Additional Damage Enhancements
There are multiple enhancements scattered throughout the three main Warlock enhancement trees, most if not all of which you should be able to attain simultaneously if planned properly to push your Eldritch Blast damage as far as possible, allowing its damage to keep up with well-upgraded weapons of other classes.
- Within Tainted Scholar enhancements there are:
- Blood Component (Core progression 30), for 10% faster attack speed
- Heretical Lore (Core progression 40), for + 1d8 base damage
- Strong Pact (One each in Tier 1, 2, 3 and 4), for +1d6 Pact damage each (4d6 total)
- Penetrating Blast (Tier 4), for +1d8 base damage and changes type to Pierce
- Eldritch Power (Tier 5), for +1d8 base damage
- Within Enlightened Spirit enhancements there is:
- Within Soul Eater enhancements there is:
- Within Acolyte of the Skin enhancements there is:
- Drink Their Fear (Tier 4), do double Pact damage against enemies that are afraid of you.
As a spell attack, Eldritch Blast is also affected by any enhancements or item enchantments that include the wording "On Harmful Spell Cast" or similar.
The default Eldritch Blast goes in a straight line. It doesn't home in. Enemies that move may avoid it. Eldritch Blast Shapes alter how you attack enemies. Single-target attacks will generally do greater damage per creature than AoE, for instance. These shape toggles are available in the enhancement trees.
- Focused (basic attack)
- This is your best option for heavy single target damage at long range, such as against bosses, scaling with 125% spellpower.
- Chain (Tainted Scholar enhancements)
- A lower damage form at 100% spellpower but still puts out plenty of damage from a properly built Warlock, and it has several excellent tactical benefits. This lets you apply Eldritch Blast damage to groups at long range, and it has three very key aspects: the chain strike is instant/never misses, ignores invisibility completely and can even be triggered off of destroyed crates/boxes and the like, making this form an excellent way to sweep an area for stealthy or invisible opponents. This works best against smaller squads of enemies in very wide, open areas; it thus is best deployed in outdoor quests and/or wilderness adventure areas.
- Cone (Soul Eater enhancements)
- Easily one of the best stances available, as it scales to 100% spellpower but does it to every single enemy caught in its area of effect, allowing it to drop large squads of enemies quite quickly. Its range, while shorter than Single or Chain, is still quite respectable (it is recommended when you first get it to do some target practice against destructible crates, so you can learn to gauge when you are in-range); it is also excellent for clearing destructible containers in a mission. This also works quite well against invisible enemies and even if you are Blinded; while your screen will be blacked out you will still see damage numbers appear above the precise position of enemies hit as per usual, so just keep spraying the cone blasts towards them. It is recommended to pair this with a run speed boost like Expeditious Retreat to help get you into range faster and keep you out of range of melee enemies while using it. Note that this shape cannot target breakables like the other shapes. This is an excellent choice for your default stance to be on all the time but it really shines in more enclosed locations such as smaller caves/rooms, tunnels and corridors. In such environments, constantly fire it as you move forward; this is an excellent way to sweep for invisible enemies.
- Enervating Shadow (Tainted Scholar enhancements)
- Similar to the Focused form, except that each hit has a 10% chance to inflict a negative level and the bolt can change its course in mid-air to pursue moving enemies. Improved in Update 58 to go up to 150% Spellpower scaling. However, this form is subject to several limitations; the bolt cannot path around obstacles and enemies with high run speeds can outmanouevre it fairly easily, and negative levels quickly stop being especially useful in Epic levels or Reaper difficulty. As such, while this stance is situationally useful in dealing with enemies that jump a lot (such as Skeleton Archers and some spiders), it is otherwise little of an improvement in power from the Focused form that it may be worth spending your enhancement points on something else.
- While toggled on, aura damages all enemies within a small radius of you every few seconds. Even at its most upgraded form that fires every 2 seconds, that is still only one-third the firing rate of other forms. However, just like Death Aura, this triggers automatically. This helps with action economy; you can spells/SLAs or attack with melee or ranged weapons, and the aura keeps ticking. This is the shape for you if you don't want to play your warlock as a back-line caster but prefer more direct engagement, for example, a tank or melee supplemented by the aura.
- This form can be activated within a public (city) area and you will be able to visually see the aura pulsing out from your character, however only you will be able to see it; other players in the area including party members will not see the pulse waves.
- Affects all enemies in a straight line. Reduces your Pact Dice by 1. Range is similar to Focused form, similarly scales to 125% Spellpower. It does not pierce through destructible objects like crates. The beam is quite narrow so hitting a large number of enemies or even more than 2 with a single shot isn't likely; even Chain form is found to significantly outperform it against groups and tightly-packed destructibles. Like Enervating Shadow, skipping this form is well worth considering in order to spend enhancement points elsewhere.
The following stances can also be used in conjunction with the toggles above, although only one can be active at a time.
- Utterdark Blast (Tainted Scholar enhancements)
- Switches the base damage to Evil instead of Force. This is important to consider alongside multiple Light Spell Power upgrades within Enlightened Spirit enhancements as Light Spell Power also boosts Alignment damage. It will also affect gearing considerations, as you will need Radiance items instead of Impulse ones. Since this affects the Core damage of the blast it still benefits from the resistance piercing effect and can still injure enemies normally immune to it, such as Evil Outsiders.
- Penetrating Blast (Tainted Scholar enhancements)
- Switches the base damage to Pierce instead of Force and adds +1d8 base damage. As a Physical damage type, Piercing damage is boosted by Impulse items and Force Spell Power upgrades; since these are the same upgrades needed for the base Eldritch Blast, you should be able to keep the same gear equipped if changing between the two. Since the damage is not coming from a physical weapon, you also do not need to worry about Damage Reduction. (This stance is very effective against Golems, as it bypasses their inherent resistance to all magical damage types.)
Different shapes scale differently with Spell Power:
- Focused: 125%
- Enervating Shadow: 150%
- Beam: 125%
- The rest: 100%