This may not be news to everyone else, but I was quite surprised with what I came up with and how easy this build is to play with even at my low gear level, Act 1 Inferno, low resistance.
Skills required are as follows:
Fists of Thunder: Lightning Flash
Increases your chance to Dodge by 16% for 2 seconds.
Cyclone Strike: Wall of Wind
After using Cyclone Strike, gain a 20% chance to dodge attacks for 3 seconds.
Breath of Heaven: Blazing Wrath
Breath of Heaven increases the damage of your attacks by 15% for 45 seconds.
Seven Sided Strike: Sustained Attack
Reduces the cooldown of Seven-Sided Strike by 7 seconds.
Increases the duration of Serenity to 4 seconds.
Mantra of Evasion: Backlash
Successfully dodging an attack has a chance to create a burst of flame dealing 35% weapon damage as Fire to all nearby enemies.
Beacon of Ytar
Reduces all cooldowns by 15%
The Guardian's Path
While dual-wielding, you gain a 15% chance to dodge incoming attacks. (Thisis the only part that's important)
Every point of Spirit spent heals you for 62 Life.
How it all works
Pre-pull I make sure my mantra is active as well as the Breath of Heaven buff. I run in and "pull" while activating Serenity. Build spirit and Fists of Thunder, igniting the Lightning Flash rune, then explode the enemy with Cyclone Strike, keeping the Wall of Wind rune buff active at all times if/when possible. When I run into a streak of not dodging really well, i use Seven Sided Strike (invincibility frames) on its super short CD to finish an enemy quickly or if I'm in big trouble I use Serenity to get away to kite/heal. While all this is going on I'm dealing damage passively to the surrounding enemies with all this dodging with my Backlash rune.
My attack speed is currently at 2.17 and I don't recommend this spec for sub 2 second attack speed and I'm probably not at a high enough dodge (1453 dexterity 52.7% with Mantra of Evasion only) to be using this spec at its optimum, but I survive enough to get the job done. I feel really tanky without using a shield and I even got the Butcher down to ~25% before the floor went nuts. (2 645ish fist weapons = not enough damage)
I hope to hear from monks who try out my spec. Not really sure it's even "mine." For sure no one told me about it and it's my own experimentation.
Whatever. Play with the spec. Let me know what you think.
PS: The Guardian's Path doesn't work with a shield. Gotta go balls (fists) out!
Act 1 inferno is not a great place to be testing builds because the difference between a1 and a2 is massive (as is the jump from a2 to a3). For example I was able to make a melee wizard build that could clear all champion packs in a1, and face tank the butcher with no issues. Act 2 is the real proving grounds for if a build is going to be viable or not: my melee wizard build met a horrible death on the first few trash packs of a2; I struggled to the first champion pack before getting stomped into the ground. Recently I've read of some people being successful with a melee wizard in later acts, but their gear is so ridiculously good that I wouldn't say the build is viable for 99% of the playerbase.
Your build will not be viable at all in a2 and beyond. The reason being is personal experience, my monk is getting steamrolled in a3 and I tried a dodge centric build and it fell flat on its face. Sure rng can work in your favor and you'll seem invunerable for short spurts, but it only takes a few bad dice rolls and you'll get destroyed without the proper armor/resists, and consistiant midigation skills/passives that you are ignoring.
I'm hoping the reduction in mob damage that is supposed to happen in 1.0.3 will open up a lot more melee builds, but right now you need to be stacking midigation because the mobs hit so damn past a1.
I'm hoping the reduction in mob damage that is supposed to happen in 1.0.3
I don't think they reduce the damage, only some health points of monsters/packs.
And @ TE: Stop doing guides which only tested in act 1. It's useless.You get destroyed by 40-50k hits from "larger" mobs... because you can't dodge everything (like the fat onces in Act 3)
To quote a blue, meaning this could be viable in 1.0.3:
"Inferno balance right now has a difficulty gap in which Act I feels about right, but Act II feels like trying to bust through a brick wall. In patch 1.0.3 we’re going to be lowering that wall by adjusting the damage and health of monsters in Inferno Act II, III and IV. "
The problem with super dodge centric builds come from when you don't dodge... There are a solid number of mobs you're not going to power down that are simply going to 1 shot you. No room for fancy tricks because you're already running back.
I started off using a heavy dodge build too in Act 1 because it was cheap to buy. Then the first white trash I ran into on act 2 sent me back to the drawing board.
I think if you take Beacon of Ytar and the cooldown reduction of 7sided strike, the game bugs out and actually increases the cooldown.
At least thats what I noticed in the first week... has that been fixed yet?
You all might be loling at Beacon, but I absolutely love it:
13 second Serenity (20 second base - 4 seconds of active time (w/rune) while CD starts - 3 seconds with Beacon)
18 second 7 sided strike (23 second cd with Sustained Attack - 2 seconds animation - 3.45 seconds with beacon)
and @2seconds off of BoH.
All this being said, I've come to the conclusion that until Act 2 is retuned that this is not 100% viable. The damage is really just too much. I went as far as killing Maghda solo and that was a task. With the right mix of stats I have full faith in this spec. LoH + 7SS will be a dream come true when I'm low on health and need a large heal.
Anyway, thanks for the input. I'm gonna strap on a shield and not be terribly happy about it.
Don't want to break your hopes, but not dodging 2 attacks in a row might get you killed in Act 3, that's why high armor/resistance and live/hit builds are dominant. And you generally ignore all things that allows monk to get high res/armor, as somebody mentioned act 1 can be done with ease, i can run it with 180 MF gear (gimped primary stats) and still walk over everything there with only 400 LoH from amulet.
i killed Butcher with worse stats and weapons. You sacrifice so much DPS to dodge (via passives and skill/rune choices) that you have virtually no chance of beating the enrage. I beat him my first time using 2 500+/- DPS weapons, and the following -
Deadly Reach - Keen Eye (50% armor/4 secs)
Lashing Tail Kick - Sweeping Armada (increased knockback and slow)
Breath of Heaven - Blazing Wrath (18% dmg increase/45 secs)
Sweeping Wind - Firestorm (increased radius)
7 Sided Strike - Fulminating Onslaught (110% AoE per target hit)
Mantra of Healing - Sustenance (increased regen)
Transendence/Guardians Path/One with Everything
Pretty well balanced and effective. I can farm Act 1 and progress through Act 2 with minor difficulty 9have upgraded gear since the above-referenced 1st butcher kill). With the keen eye buff i hit about 5k armor, dbl stacking cold/all resist + OwE gives me about 500 resist all, and Dex + Guardians Path I have 47% dodge. Because Deadly reach allows my to hit things at a farther range, I take fewer hits while DPSing, but Sweeping Wind requires the Firestorm rune to be effective. For packs I use 7-sided the soften them up, then Lashing to keep the pack size manageable. Transendence + 700+/- LoH + 1k passive regen keeps me topped off except for ridiculous elite packs (molten/vortex/fire chains/jailer comes to mind).
With the above my paperdoll DPS was 11k/13.5k with BoH buff. Feels pretty balanced to me, outside of the above-mentioned ridiculous affix combos.