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How does the Nine Lives passive support in Path of Exile work?

Stay alive by hurting yourself with Nine Lives.

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Witches in Path of Exile have a very high Intelligence, which is their greatest asset. Her low Strength makes her especially vulnerable to Life damage once her Energy Shield is breached, but her high Intelligence grants her significant Mana boosts and offers unique gear and spells to suit this purpose. Thankfully, she has a foolproof, passive method of recovering this life thanks to the Nine Lives skill.

Functioning of Nine Lives

Because Nine Lives is a passive ability, its effect is always active; the recovery happens after taking damage, without any waiting period. When compared to the average four-second recovery time, it speeds up the process by an additional second. These benefits multiply and synergize extremely well with other recovery-enhancing abilities, such as Mender’s Wellspring and Profane Chemistry.

It’s important to remember that Nine Lives counts both Lost Life and Energy Shield as “damage” when calculating your reimbursement. This allows nimble, situationally-aware Witches to actively restore their health by taking moderate damage to their Energy Shield, before fleeing and allowing their Shield to passively regenerate while they heal. Another option is to use a self-harming spell, like Forbidden Rite, to trigger Nine Lives’ effects on purpose.