What do YOU do differently compared to the cliché/cookie cutter builds?

  • #1
    Hello, fellow monks! :)

    Lately both these boards and the official forums offered little to no inspiration for exploring other aspects or variants of monk playstyle, itemisation or stat focus. Most threads either ask for gear/upgrade advice or are guides to farming something as efficiently as possible, with the occasional newbie question popping up here and there, but the clear common focus of almost all these threads is efficiency.

    While I agree that to avoid feeling like you're not progressing at all, you can't choose a very inefficient build to do your farming and there are some mandatory choices regarding skills, I'm a bit astonished to see how many people abandon the concept of thinking for themselves and finding the answers to itemisation or stat focus questions on their own, and instead rely on guides, tutorials and premade builds - heck, even gear purchased by someone else - to get their characters higher on the efficiency scale. This is great for instant gratification and noticable leaps in xp/loot gain over a given period of time, but I believe that in the long run this causes you to lose interest in the game much quicker and become a "burnout".

    So in this topic I'm looking for things you enjoy doing differently from what the guides, tutorials and forum posters tell you, regardless of whether it makes you more efficient at farming or not. Let's share our unique (or not-so-common) quirks, variants and obsessions and maybe some of us will be inspired by the choices of others and start experimenting, providing a breath of fresh air in their adventures.

    I'll start off by listing my two guilty pleasures as a monk:

    1. Life regeneration

    This stat is by far my favourite, so much so that I have 2500-3000 life per second depending on my equipped items and aura. Most monk guides and tutorials fail to even make mention of this affix, presumably writing it off as useless, but I've found that it has tons of utility in almost any combat situation, because it's the only source of healing that doesn't require you to do anything. This can be a life saver for hardcore players experiencing a lag spike, but even in softcore it means that you can focus a lot less on life steal/life on hit for weapons and jewelry, resulting in a cheaper way to upgrade these crucial equipment slots. Also, you don't feel like you have to keep attacking when surrounded by elemental damage sources such as desecrator, molten or plague pools, since with high enough life per second you can counterbalance the damage taken from them, providing you a safe way to reposition yourself if necessary.

    Life regeneration also allows you to crank up the damage output against reflect damage packs some more. After a certain dps mark, life steal alone can get completely nullified by damage reflect, making you slowly but steadily lose health if you increase dps further, whereas coupled with the always active life regeneration, this dps mark will be much higher, meaning you can go all out on them without having to watch cooldowns.

    I've been pleasantly surprised by how people react to this unconventional twist in my monk. Most people I've done ubers with doubted my ability to survive MP9-10 back when I had only 32k health and low life steal/life on hit values. But since every time I use serenity or seven-sided strike, I replenish a lot of health without taking damage and all three uber fights have some damage source that's present almost all the time, life regeneration is the primary source of safe healing for when things get rough. I've had people whispering me that they were sure I was going to lie on the ground the entire time with the defensive stats I had, and it felt good to prove them wrong. Some people even looked me up on the life regen leaderboards on DiabloProgress and added me as friends to exchange ideas.

    2. Sword & Board

    Another thing that most monk guides rarely recommend is not going dual-wield. But I just can't help it: Sacred Shields look awesome and I've always wanted to make a tanky monk to hold any kind of monster at bay while my friends are laying the smackdown on it. Not much to explain here: you trade critical damage and attack speed for critical chance and defensive stats. Still, you can arrive at a decent DPS total if you're lucky enough to find a nice shield in the auction house, and good shields are generally much cheaper than good off-hand weapons.

    Shields, however are frowned upon even worse than life per second on gear (probably because they can't tell you're stacking that by looking at your character). I've been turned down by not one whirlwind barbarians for uber parties with the explanation of "LOL shield monk, no thx". When I ran into one of these barbarians in someone else's uber party, he made perfect use of his whopping 225k dps by lying dead on the ground during the majority of all three fights, while my shield (and life regeneration) kept me alive easily so I could tank attack the ubers non-stop and provide a DPS boost to the party by recasting MoC/Overawe every 3 seconds (since nothing during the fights required me to use any of my defensive cooldowns). Many people - especially those playing barbarians and DH-s with their ridiculous paper dps numbers - disregard the fact that it's not enough to have good dps on paper, you have to be able to continuously attack and not have to run around (or lie dead) to make the most of it. If a shield helps you achieve that without dropping billions of gold into upgrading each gear slot, it's a worthy investment.

    So, what is everyone else's way of breaking free from cookie cutter monk conventions? Come on now, don't be shy, there's no wrong answer. :P Remember, this isn't about efficiency, like most of the other threads out there, this is about creativity, personal preference and - most importantly - personal enjoyment of the game.
  • #2
    interesting :), i think i'll try this
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  • #3
    That's a really interesting stat choice :o By george he's a genius :P ;)
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  • #4
    I dont know if there any guide for the playstyle that i will describe.
    If there is, pls trust me that i have never heard about it or read it.

    Last days i love to use Cyclone Strike when playing next to wizard partner.
    Using teamspeak 3 or skype etc to communicate faster than typing in chat.
    We play MP10
    I always stay in town next to the portal and flags.
    Trying the higher speed possible, he is running around ignoring mobs. When there is an elite pack or many mobs together like Keep Depths lvl2 or rakkis crossing then he calls me. I teleport on him and use cyclone strike. All mobs are in one spot and in perma cc from the wizard. We kill fast and easy without any real risk to die. I use cyclone strike several times during a fight so nothing runs away to be able to attack us. Havent seen any fire chain or mortar for ages :ph34r:
    When elite is dead i teleport back to town waiting for next fight.

    This way I farm legendaries at Mp10. In a 30 minutes run i always get at least 2 legendaries.

    Best part of this playstyle is that I get used to survive at mp10 without serenity.
    Wizard makes game easier of course but still MP10 without serenity is a challenge :cheers:
  • #5
    I agree that most people do not think for themselves, and therefore miss quite a few interesting things that they could otherwise incorporate. I consider my own build and setup to be quite unique, and have never seen anyone else doing what I do. Lately I've had a few people ask about it so I'll detail it a little here:

    I run with a level 47 weapon. That's right, you heard me. My offhand has a whopping 158 dps. I have a grand total of 58k dps on my character sheet, and yet, I perma-stun enemies and pump out 1.5 million dps. What??? Huh?! These are the usual reactions of people when I join their game.

    I use Sledge fist with an echoing fury because it, much like the EF, adds .16 attacks per second as well as having a 47.6% chance to stun (just talking about mine, theoretically you can get higher). This gives me 3 attacks per second (using thunderclap it is around 4 (1.4*3 = 4.2))

    The reason this is so damn godly is because not only am I stunning the enemy non-stop, I generate insane amounts of cyclones due to the attack speed. This is good because I use a high end skorn and gear for the initial sweeping winds cast, so those cyclones are very strong. In my case, I get to 250k sheet dps and 13% sweeping winds damage upgrade for my snapshot cast.

    Sorry if this is laid out confusingly, I wrote this quickly from work.

    I should also add that with LoH, 4 attacks per second makes for some great regeneration. I also think this will be completely insane for pvp when it eventually happens.
  • #6
    mostly i try out unusuall builds tht most ppl dont play... i have fulltank monk spec for ubers aaaaaaaand dunno... thats it mostly...
  • #7
    Quote from SolusCoda

    I agree that most people do not think for themselves, and therefore miss quite a few interesting things that they could otherwise incorporate. I consider my own build and setup to be quite unique, and have never seen anyone else doing what I do. Lately I've had a few people ask about it so I'll detail it a little here:

    I run with a level 47 weapon. That's right, you heard me. My offhand has a whopping 158 dps. I have a grand total of 58k dps on my character sheet, and yet, I perma-stun enemies and pump out 1.5 million dps. What??? Huh?! These are the usual reactions of people when I join their game.

    I use Sledge fist with an echoing fury because it, much like the EF, adds .16 attacks per second as well as having a 47.6% chance to stun (just talking about mine, theoretically you can get higher). This gives me 3 attacks per second (using thunderclap it is around 4 (1.4*3 = 4.2))

    The reason this is so damn godly is because not only am I stunning the enemy non-stop, I generate insane amounts of cyclones due to the attack speed. This is good because I use a high end skorn and gear for the initial sweeping winds cast, so those cyclones are very strong. In my case, I get to 250k sheet dps and 13% sweeping winds damage upgrade for my snapshot cast.

    Sorry if this is laid out confusingly, I wrote this quickly from work.

    I should also add that with LoH, 4 attacks per second makes for some great regeneration. I also think this will be completely insane for pvp when it eventually happens.


    This sounds awesome. :D But I think they have to nerf cc abilities in PvP, because just a single fear, freeze or blind takes long enough to kill someone, or atleast hurt pretty bad.
  • #8
    hi :)
    this is really great for ubers!
    people just dont do it because

    a ) they are trying to farm efficiently
    b )the ultimate monk for that is dual wield with lifesteal, never dying and doing max-dps

    i tend to have a max-healing weapon for ubers (costs nothing, has 800+ loh, loh-socket, 3%lifesteal, lower dps) which is my version of your shield monk :)
    try that, its awesome too!
  • #9
    Quote from SolusCoda

    I agree that most people do not think for themselves, and therefore miss quite a few interesting things that they could otherwise incorporate. I consider my own build and setup to be quite unique, and have never seen anyone else doing what I do. Lately I've had a few people ask about it so I'll detail it a little here:

    I run with a level 47 weapon. That's right, you heard me. My offhand has a whopping 158 dps. I have a grand total of 58k dps on my character sheet, and yet, I perma-stun enemies and pump out 1.5 million dps. What??? Huh?! These are the usual reactions of people when I join their game.

    I use Sledge fist with an echoing fury because it, much like the EF, adds .16 attacks per second as well as having a 47.6% chance to stun (just talking about mine, theoretically you can get higher). This gives me 3 attacks per second (using thunderclap it is around 4 (1.4*3 = 4.2))

    The reason this is so damn godly is because not only am I stunning the enemy non-stop, I generate insane amounts of cyclones due to the attack speed. This is good because I use a high end skorn and gear for the initial sweeping winds cast, so those cyclones are very strong. In my case, I get to 250k sheet dps and 13% sweeping winds damage upgrade for my snapshot cast.

    Sorry if this is laid out confusingly, I wrote this quickly from work.

    I should also add that with LoH, 4 attacks per second makes for some great regeneration. I also think this will be completely insane for pvp when it eventually happens.



    i do this myself. i've been doing it for about a week or two now. fun as hell! sometimes i go just azurewrath and shield, sometimes its the AW and a sledge fist. both ways work well. me and a buddy both do this. and people dont believe him when we carry mp10 runs. they dont think he can solo and thats what we're doing all the time.
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