Inferno Survival Build (least gear dependent build)

  • #1
    I've been quite hesitant to post my thoughts about my build until I have personally tested it in inferno (past act 2 specifically) to see how it would work.

    Mainly due to the large amounts of similar posts from people who suggest builds for inferno that contain one of the two following flaws :

    (1) Not being fully tested in harder acts of inferno

    (2) Being highly gear dependent builds that require certain stats to work

    After enough playing to get a good feel for it with all the possible champion packs and such, I can gladly say that this build will enable you to survive and kill things SLOWLY but SURELY in inferno, in order to gear up enough to the point of trying out more varied/fun builds.

    This is mainly a build focusing on extreme survival for farming inferno purposes until you can get your stats past a comfortable point to try out less defensive builds.

    Link to the build here

    Skill choices and Rune decisions explanation :

    Skill Choice :
    Crippling Wave
    Rune Choice : Concussion


    (1) Out of all your spirit generators, Crippling wave is probably the most well rounded one, with good AOE damage spread (compared to deadly reach)

    (2) despite lower weapon damage percentage than WoHF , it still does more overall damage, mainly due to the AOE aspect

    (3) Slowing down enemies is more valuable for hit and run during fights than the benefits granted by other generators

    (4) Concussion rune adds 20% damage mitigation from enemy hits

    (5) 20% slower attack speed on enemies also means less damage taken per second


    Skill Choice : Sweeping Wind
    Rune Choice : Bladestorm


    (1) Out of all your spirit spenders, Sweeping wind is the most well rounded, with the best overall Damage output over longer fights than any other spirit spenders (Due to AOE damage, almost permanent uptime if you keep the 3 stacks up without needing to spend extra spirit for more damage, and no cooldown)

    (2) it has the highest spirit cost of any possible spirit spender (75 spirit) , which enables it to synergize well with the transcendence passive (which we are using in this build), therefore you can use it as an emergency heal (4650 Life) if both serenity and breath of heaven are on cooldown.

    (3) Bladestorm rune is without doubt the most useful rune for sweeping wind, increasing the damage dramatically

    Skill Choice : Breath of Heaven
    Rune Choice : Circle of Life


    (1) A very powerful healing spell, at a relatively low spirit cost and moderate cooldown, a definite must have

    (2) Circle of Life rune increases the healing to 8063 - 9675 life , which is even better

    (3) Transcendence passive synergy adds 1550 extra life when it's used , making the total healing amount received 9613 - 11225 life

    Skill Choice : Serenity
    Rune Choice : Peaceful Repose


    (1) A shield that makes you invulnerable for 3 seconds, as well as immunity to all control impairing effects, again a skill that is a must for survival.

    (2) Peaceful Repose rune allows it to also function as a secondary heal for 6202 - 7752 life

    (3) Transcendence passive synergy adds 620 extra life when it's used , making the total healing amount received 6822 - 8372 life

    Skill Choice : Blinding Flash
    Rune Choice : Searing Light


    (1) chances for enemies to miss translate directly into extra dodge for your character, more survivability.

    (2) Searing Light rune makes this even more valuable by making the chance for elite enemies to miss attacks on you increase to 60%

    Skill Choice : Mantra of Evasion
    Rune Choice : Backlash


    (1) Since monk is overall an avoidance tank, not a vitality tank like the barb, therefore mantra of evasion is a more powerful choice by amplifying his avoidance even further

    (2) Backlash rune selection was mainly due to this build being very highly defensive, and the only source of damage coming from crippling wave and sweeping wind, therefore it would be useful to add a little extra damage through a defensive ability like the mantra,
    Also since you will be dodging attacks for a good majority of the time, this would mean the 35% weapon damage AOE is a semi-passive ability, that stacks with sweeping wind (making the total passive aoe damage around you reach a total of 95% weapon damage most of the time)

    (3) spamming the mantra whenever it's on cooldown adds an extra dodge chance (more survivability) which in turn also makes sure the backlash rune proc uptime is maximum (more AOE damage), while having the relatively medium cost of 50 spirit ensures it's also useful as a semi-heal through Transcendence passive (3100 Life)

    Passive Skill Choices explanation :

    Passive Skill : Resolve

    (1) reducing incoming damage through your own attacks by 25% is a huge damage reduction amount.

    (2) synergizes well with concussion rune for crippling wave (they stack multiplicative)

    Passive Skill : Seize the initiative

    (1) converting your main attribute for damage into a survival stat is a win-win strategy, stacking high dexterity to do more damage will automatically ensure you have more damage reduction without investing in any other stat

    (2) High dexterity investment will also increase your dodge chance, which will increase your survival as well as your AOE damage from Backlash rune for Mantra of Evasion.

    (3) High attack speeds from high dexterity stacking will translate to more spirit generation, which will translate into more cooldown usage, and therefore more heals overall through Transcendence passive

    Passive Skill : Transcendence

    (1) utilizing any spirit spending ability into providing additional heals is definitely the most useful passive ability for a monk.

    (2) Impressive synergy with almost all of the skills chosen in this build.


    Notes and further thoughts regarding the build :

    (1) Focus on stacking Dexterity and Vitality as your two main stats, as well as weapon damage (Duh!)

    (2) Focus on stacking + all resists as your secondary stat

    (3) For more early survival, use a good high damage 1h weapon with a shield, don't use a Daibo or dual wield early on in inferno, the extra armor from a shield is worth the trade-off in damage until you have better overall gear

    (4) Tackle mobs slowly but steadily, use your cooldowns to effectively heal whenever you need, even by using an ability like the mantra or sweeping wind if your main healing spells are on cooldown

    (5) try to maximize your dodge against bosses by using blinding flash + mantra consecutively as you stand to hit them, followed by serenity to give you a further 3 seconds where you can stand and damage without getting hit.


    Any further critique and discussion is more than welcome, however bear in mind that this is not a late game build, but rather an inferno starting/farming survival build that enables you to effectively seek out better gear
  • #2
    Good build, very similar to mine. Having transcendence over One with Everything is for me not an option. OWE is a must in my oppinion. Interesting with backlash, gonna try this tonight. I would use Fists of thunder with lightning rune for even more dodge instead.
  • #3
    Nice post.Thank you :)
  • #4
    Quote from teneighty

    Good build, very similar to mine. Having transcendence over One with Everything is for me not an option. OWE is a must in my oppinion. Interesting with backlash, gonna try this tonight. I would use Fists of thunder with lightning rune for even more dodge instead.


    I was going to say that Taking One with Everything is optional instead of transcendence if your +all resists are quite low, and then later on switching to Transcendence afterwards. (most people coming out of hell should have at least some sort of semi-decent resistance incorporated into their gear already), so your point is very valid, Though not taking Transcendence is a big loss in healing synergy.

    I was also contemplating fists of thunder with lightning rune for more dodge also, but it's main problem is that it's a single target ability, my initial thinking was that it can be more useful vs bosses, but i later concluded that crippling wave is still superior for the following reasons :

    (1) most boss battles include trash or summons that need to be killed fast for orbs or to minimize damage taken (AOE is more favorable than single target here also)

    (2) if you are farming champion packs for Nephalim Valor stacks, it's more effective to use crippling wave, and you can't switch to fists of thunder at bosses without losing the buff

    (3) you will lose damage reduction from concussion rune (very huge against bosses)

    (4) you will lose movement speed reduction on enemies (useful when trying to outrun those hard packs, and believe me you will need to run sometimes no matter how high your dodge is, until your cooldowns are ready to heal again)

    (5) hitting multiple enemies with an AOE attack means more enemies have their damage reduced simultaneously from the Resolve Passive (if you were using fists of thunder, the 25% damage reduction would only apply to a single enemy you were hitting and not all of them, unless you alternate attacks on multiple enemies, which is kinda impractical)
  • #5
    Quote from suprn

    Nice post.Thank you :)


    You're welcome :)
  • #6
    Yeah great build! I use one very similar as well but when our gear is able to fair well against our enemies and want to dual wield instead of using a shield, which of these 3 runes would be best to replace with the 15% dodge one from dual wielding?
  • #7
    Quote from Noctis

    Yeah great build! I use one very similar as well but when our gear is able to fair well against our enemies and want to dual wield instead of using a shield, which of these 3 runes would be best to replace with the 15% dodge one from dual wielding?


    none of them actually, when you got better gear that has more armor enough to compensate for the loss of whatever armor you got on your shield, then you can use the exact same passives and dual wield and rely on the extra armor lost from shield to be there from higher armor on all other armor slots.

    For example, if all armor from your equipment (without shield) was "X "and your shield gave you "Y" armor, your total combined armor is "X+Y" , if you can survive with that amount just fine while using a shield, then you can drop the shield completely and dual wield without taking the dodge passive when your new armor from equipment without shield is greater than or equal to "X+Y"

    Also, take note that I personally think using a 2h weapon with this build will be more effective (to maximize the constant AOE +95% weapon damage around you) as well as increase the damage of crippling wave AOE

    You'll be stacking dexterity as much as you can anyway so even with a 2h weapon you'll be hitting fast enough to generate spirit at a nice rate, while also dishing out constant high damage.
  • #8
    Nice build! Had to find something to replace SW - FoT - MoH combo and this looks great!

    Have you considered having Fists of Thunder instead of Crippling Wave? With that spirit regeneration rune and Sweeping Wind you have insane Spirit generation and therefore you can spam Mantra.
  • #9
    Quote from MeddlinG

    Nice build! Had to find something to replace SW - FoT - MoH combo and this looks great!

    Have you considered having Fists of Thunder instead of Crippling Wave? With that spirit regeneration rune and Sweeping Wind you have insane Spirit generation and therefore you can spam Mantra.


    check my reply earlier in the thread in response to teneighty about crippling wave vs fists of thunder use.
  • #10
    I really like this build, it pretty much identical to mine, however I do have some issues with Sweeping Wind. When I kite (I don't exactly go toe to toe with some of the affixes), the vortex becomes rather useless and I lose the buff and then don't have enough spirit tu put it back up, let alone stack to 3... So it just takes up the skill slot. So far I have been using Cyclone Strike, because when I finally decide to stop kiting and attack I can pull the mobs to me. I use the +20% dodge rune called Wall of Wind too which is rather amazing.

    I have also been experimenting with 7 sided in that slot (kind of fits the kiting strat and then 7sided+few other hits while having some survival/escape CD ready) but I feel more comfortable with Cyclone Strike atm.
  • #11
    Quote from reve

    I really like this build, it pretty much identical to mine, however I do have some issues with Sweeping Wind. When I kite (I don't exactly go toe to toe with some of the affixes), the vortex becomes rather useless and I lose the buff and then don't have enough spirit tu put it back up, let alone stack to 3... So it just takes up the skill slot. So far I have been using Cyclone Strike, because when I finally decide to stop kiting and attack I can pull the mobs to me. I use the +20% dodge rune called Wall of Wind too which is rather amazing.

    I have also been experimenting with 7 sided in that slot (kind of fits the kiting strat and then 7sided+few other hits while having some survival/escape CD ready) but I feel more comfortable with Cyclone Strike atm.


    The trick is to kite then only stop to do 1 or 2 hits to renew the duration before the buff falls off, then run again... etc ! with practice you can keep it up no matter what. you'll never really manage to improve your timing and ability to keep it stacked if you give up early and not practice :)

    also, stopping to do 1 hit or 2 is good for kiting since you re-apply the crippling wave movement reduction to enemies whenever it wears off. ensuring you can easily outrun them again.
  • #12
    Oh I sure am aware of that but my experience with few of the affix combinations is that I drop to 20%> HP within 2, max 3 seconds so I pretty much only gotta attack when I have some defensive cooldowns ready because if I were to get 1 more hit by accident I would die otherwise. And the vortex falls in the meantime... Probably a gear issue, it will get better.

    Either way thanks for the feedback, I am aware of the awesomeness of SW but at this point it doesn't fit my playstyle the best. I tried the 1-2 hits strat (I saw it on twich.tv somewhere too) but I can't say I am a fan of it right now, feels too... Uncomfortable to me. Cowardly! :)
  • #13
    Hey, from my expirence dodge hits very hard dimishing returns when you get it above 50%. On my own example (please excuse me that numbers are off memory not character sheet, but i dont have access to my acc atm):

    my basic dodge from dexterity is around 32%,
    with the 15% passive talent it reaches around 45%,
    with mantra of evasion up this goes up to roughly 55%,
    when i use mantra of evasion (additional dodge) i reach 62.5%
    more to that i was using cyclone strike with 20% dodge rune and it finally brought me up to 67.5%

    If you start adding bonuses from tooltips and sheet its: 32% + 15% + 15% + 15% + 20% which one could except being 97%


    Thus i really like your build, and it absolutely does not need additional dodge from passive nor cyclone strike. Frankly, i believe miss from blind is separate roll and it should be by miles better :)

    Also one thing i might suggest that could make a huge difference to your dps output and healing, is helmet with +health on spirit spent and +dmg to crippling wave (i found one with both attributes and 9% to wave for less then 100k :)) and weapon with +health on spirit spent. If you can find those items with decent amount of those stats, you can eventualy eliminate transcendence (you can get to 45 hp per spirit with items with ease), and use One with everything instead.

    Thanks for good read and nice idea behind the build.
  • #14
    Quote from iamwengy

    Hey, from my expirence dodge hits very hard dimishing returns when you get it above 50%. On my own example (please excuse me that numbers are off memory not character sheet, but i dont have access to my acc atm):

    my basic dodge from dexterity is around 32%,
    with the 15% passive talent it reaches around 45%,
    with mantra of evasion up this goes up to roughly 55%,
    when i use mantra of evasion (additional dodge) i reach 62.5%
    more to that i was using cyclone strike with 20% dodge rune and it finally brought me up to 67.5%

    If you start adding bonuses from tooltips and sheet its: 32% + 15% + 15% + 15% + 20% which one could except being 97%


    Thus i really like your build, and it absolutely does not need additional dodge from passive nor cyclone strike. Frankly, i believe miss from blind is separate roll and it should be by miles better :)

    Also one thing i might suggest that could make a huge difference to your dps output and healing, is helmet with +health on spirit spent and +dmg to crippling wave (i found one with both attributes and 9% to wave for less then 100k :)) and weapon with +health on spirit spent. If you can find those items with decent amount of those stats, you can eventualy eliminate transcendence (you can get to 45 hp per spirit with items with ease), and use One with everything instead.

    Thanks for good read and nice idea behind the build.


    You are absolutely correct about dodge stacking multiplicative and not additive, let me explain a bit further how this is calculated (as displayed per your tooltip)

    32% dodge = you get hit 68% of the time, in other words, we'll display this as (1-0.32) = 0.68
    15% = 0.85
    20% = 0.80

    and so on, the formula to calculate how much you get hit goes something like this

    (1-0.32) x (1-0.15) x (1-0.15) x (1- 0.15) x (1- 0.20) =

    ie. 0.68 x 0.85 x 0.85 x 0.85 x 0.80 = 0.334084 (Approximately 33.5% chance to get HIT)

    which means that your chance to DODGE = 67.5% as per your tooltip display

    and which also justifies why investing any further in dodge abilities will yield less than optimum results taking diminishing returns on dodge into account. (Hence no dodge passive, no fists of thunder with dodge rune, no cyclone strike with dodge rune)
  • #15
    Trying it with 267 all resistance, 6.1k armour and 10.1k dps



    Still getting instant shot in act 2 inferno. This almost isn't even fun any more.
  • #16
    Quote from Shiveron

    Trying it with 267 all resistance, 6.1k armour and 10.1k dps



    Still getting instant shot in act 2 inferno. This almost isn't even fun any more.


    Same. I even have 300+ resistance with the same stats you have. I'm definitely not convinced that the 30% damage reduction is in for monks and barbs. Our group has been farming Act 1 Inferno for 3 days now without much to show for it because drops are so lackluster. Apparently 300%+ magic find isn't enough to find anything worthwhile.
  • #17
    Quote from Shiveron

    Trying it with 267 all resistance, 6.1k armour and 10.1k dps



    Still getting instant shot in act 2 inferno. This almost isn't even fun any more.


    same here, i dont want to play further to be waiting the increasing time to revive and tons losing gold for nothing
  • #18
    Quote from UrDum

    Quote from Shiveron

    Trying it with 267 all resistance, 6.1k armour and 10.1k dps



    Still getting instant shot in act 2 inferno. This almost isn't even fun any more.


    Same. I even have 300+ resistance with the same stats you have. I'm definitely not convinced that the 30% damage reduction is in for monks and barbs. Our group has been farming Act 1 Inferno for 3 days now without much to show for it because drops are so lackluster. Apparently 300%+ magic find isn't enough to find anything worthwhile.


    I personally got around roughly 1500 dex , 900 or so vitality, and 320 resist to all, and using shield and 1h and doing OK (not too hard, not too easy, gradually getting easier with more gear)

    I'm not sure if you guys are getting unlucky with gearing pre act 2, or i'm the one who got lucky a bit ?
  • #19
    oh and your armor is more or less fine, similar to what i have!

    however if you feel that you need more armor you can substitute the backlash rune for mantra of evasion with the hard target rune for some extra armor.

    i'm confused to why you say you're being overwhelmed, try playing more defensively and master to time your heals and cd in short bursts to fight then kite until they are ready again, rinse and repeat till the monsters are dead, that's what i do mostly..
  • #20
    hi, im trying this build but i cant put 1 of chosen skills in mouse button, i mean i cant put all the skills cos 1 mouse button only lets me put anything that is in the list, what am i doing wrong?


    edit:problem solved, i always uses crippilng wave in right mouse button.... had to switch
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