[Guide] Compendium to the Kinsman

  • #1
    Hello!
    You might wonder what kind of fool writes a skillguide to a game that haven't even been released yet. Well, to put it short I'm an fairly experienced Diablo II player who always wanted to dabble in the art of writing. Ever since I stumbled on the oh so famous Fishymancer guide I've wanted to put my thoughts on something into writing, so I decided to take a shot at it now. Another important factor in my decision to write something half-way serious is that it encourages thought process not only for me but for the would-be reader, which I like :3

    In Diablo II I played mainly a fishymancer and a psnnova mancer, for the duration of up to eight years. So WD is the natural progression of that mindset. I spent most of these years pillaging in the pits for them loots. Cooming from that into this new Diablo III I was directly looking for a build that suits a similar kind of playstyle. A build that provides fast killing speed with flexibility, redundancy and survivability. Probably what most builds look for, right?

    After dabbling in the beta and the skill calculator I found something that I think will satisfy my needs in a build. I think I can assess the viability since most of the skills I will use was granted in the beta.
    Note also that this can't be and won't be some kind of attempt of me to tell anyone how to play the game THE BESTEST, but a documentation of how I will approach the game cooming in with the mindset I have. Let's move on.



    The table
    #1: The skillsets
    #2: Whats and Whys
    #3: Playstyle
    #4: Items and Stat Prioritizing
    #5: The follower
    #6: The journey to 60
    #7: End





    #1 The Skills
    So the build I have in mind is a summoner/sacrificer with high flexibility and survivability. I feel that the skills/runes I've decided upon meld together into a very nice rounded out build with few wasted aspects. I try to make the absolute most out of everything. Also I will post two very similar skillsets, one for when I just hit 60 and start to MF for real. The other one for "later 60" when I've had the time to grab the gear I want so I'll be allowed to drop some survivability for some killing speed.


    #2 What? Why?
    Poison Dart (Splinters)
    A must have in my opinion to offset the otherwise heavy aoe focus. For bosses and annoying elites.


    Firebats (Cloud of Bats)
    Since my build wants to benefit to the fullest from Grave Injustice I will want to keep fairly close to my targets as much as possible when they die. Thus making Firebats my ideal mana-sink, with cloud of bats rune for extra damage. And don't worry about you running out of mana, that's pretty much the idea of the mana sink. And also one of the exterior motifs to playing a sacri/GI build.




    Grasp of the Dead (Unbreakable Grasp)
    An overall nice utility spell, if things go wrong with the revival of your dogs you can always play keepaway until you can get some new up with this skill. Also help with keeping the mobs from moving around too much helping with your setups for sacrifice.



    Sacrifice (Next of Kin)
    The bread and butter with Next of Kin rune to keep the uptime on your zombie dogs to a maximum.



    Zombie Dogs (Leeching Beasts)
    Zombie dogs without them there's no bang in the sacrifice. Leeching beasts for survivability in boss encounters and strong elites.


    I see some with the "Final Gift" rune which gives your dogs a 5% chance of leaving behind a health globe on death. This is a bad choice for several reasons 1) If your dogs die before you get the setup you want, you loose potential dps 2) when you're in a non AoE situation with strong mobs you will want your dogs to be able to stay alive for as long as possible so you can spam darts 3) 5% come on, why the hell waste one of our precious 15 slots to that?


    Mass Confusion (Devolution)
    Solid CC with Devolution for extra spawnrate on your dogs, furthering the potential uptime thus your killing speed. High CD but Grave Injustice will help with that.

    I see some with Big Voodoo, too me this that is a more offensive choice. Higher dog conversion with higher CD. I like having Mass Confusion around for an eventual panic situation. And on the last note, Voodoo "kind of" forces you into choosing Circle of Life as one of your passives.



    Jungle Fortitude
    You'll be in the fray, potentially taking damage. Your dogs will be taking damage. And in unison with Zombie Handler, your dogs should be able to tank decently.


    Zombie Handler
    One more dog means more boom, also bring 20% hp to the table. Which will help in hunting the harder prey.


    Grave Injustice
    One of the cornerstones in this build, it does everything for you. More hp, more mana and cuts down that high CD on Mass Confusion and Summon Zombie Dogs. However forces you closer to the actual fighting that you might want to be, but we will compensate for that
    :)



    Other Runes
    Hmm, Circle of Life is tempting because of that static +5% of dog spawns. Personally I think 5% is way too small a chance of proccing something taking up one of our most valuable slots.


    Endgame changes

    You see I've changed firebats for Locust Swarm with Searing Locusts rune because I see this doing potentially more damage than firebats. Zombie Dogs got a new rune for damage instead of survivability. And depending on how well I do in the itemization department I might consider dropping Grasp of the Dead for something that furthers killing speed.

    This is the build I'll eventually try to strive into, however it's gonna need a lot more gear to the job I believe. So we'll see later on that :3


    #3 Playstyle
    Small packs
    I imagine just mowing throu these with firebats, keeping up the pace.

    Mid size/Large Packs
    I see this playing out sorta as my poison nova necromancer, let my zombies/follower get into the fray ideally getting surrounded by atleast 8 mobs (Too try and 'guarantee' maximum revival after the sacrifice). Value the situation and then go in, open with some firebats. Confuse and then sacrifice the dogs, keep this up until I have less than 4 dogs and go back to firebats to hopefully pick up some new spawns from a lingering confuse. In case of elite survivor I either let my dogs tank and spam Darts or play keepaway with Grasp + Darts if my dogs are not around to do their secondary task.



    Bosses
    With the skillset and items I plan on going I see my dogs being atleast halway tank the boss, if not. I'll run alot and spam darts whenever I get the chance. Not the best of plans, but I hope my dogs will atleast do a half decent job of tanking.




    #4 Item / Stat prio

    Initially I will play this with a shield and a one hander, for obvious reasons. I will be in the fray alot doing damage with my firebats and I don't want to die. Mitigation is key. Until I reach a desirable amount of the third most integral stat to this build namely Gold and Health Globe Pickup Range, how much that will be or if it's even possible to get it in high enough to make me satisfied I won't know for a while. But here is how I will prioritize stats.


    I've seen rares with 6 modifiers even in the beta, so I will work from the assumption that we'll get atleast 6 modifiers on the best of gear.



    1) Intelligence
    Damage/Survivability to both you and your dogs.



    2) Vitality
    Survivability to both you and your dogs.



    3) Gold Pickup
    The most important stat to boost your grave injustice and allow you to go "Tier 2" Kinsman
    :)

    After I get these three in an amount that satisfies me I'll start thinking about swapping that shield and go for an off-hand or perhaps a two hander depending on what drops for me and what's out there in general. And depending on which skill benefits me most in later stages of the game, sacrifice heavy I'll most likely go for the 2hander. For the other skills I'll be leaning towars off hand.



    4) Undecided
    For now I like to keep this slot open. Will be dictated by what I feel is necessary. Perhaps a mana affix (I feel that +MaxMana works better than +reg in combination with GI) or defense. Or maybe I'm covered with that so I can go right into more damage.


    5) Gold Find/Magic Find
    Well yeah, gold find synergizes better with the pickup I'm already getting. And as a player I'm more leaning towards killing faster than stacking MF.



    6) Damage!
    Right now I'm thinking that I'd benefit most from crit, but who knows. Because I'll be going for the big bang sacrifices. Another I'll play it as I see fit. When I'm there.





    #5 The Follower

    Everyone is all uppidy about how awesome Diablo III multiplayer is going to be, and not without reason. But when I get down to actually playing "seriously" and doing some heavy grinding. I play alone. So to me and to my build the follower will always play a significant role, however small his damage might be in this game. I want him to survive to grant me extra MF/GF and benefit me as much as possible. And the natural choice for this build is the Templar.




    Items:
    MF!GF! Roar!

    Skills:



    A solid build to make me survive better, and granting me more mana reg. Onslaught might be changed due too it being to weak to help me with bosses, charge would then provide good utility with it's AoE stun.



    #6 The Journey to 60

    Do whatever, play around. We can actually change stuff around these days :3 However, dogs + soul harvest + firebats + poison darts will be my way until the gear makes soul harvest less and less desirable.

    Blizzard predicts that we will be around 32-34 when we hit Nightmare. I will try to be atleast 34 when I enter nightmare because that allows me to use one of my two "midway builds" with a Kinsman theme. One is for Firebats and one is for Pestilence, slightly different. Mostly the same, with a bit extra focus on Mana reg for sustained "non-sacrifice" damage because without Grave Injustice I feel sacrifice should be "saved" more often than used because of the lack of removal of CD to heighten the uptime of my dogs. Very well, here they are:

    Firebats melee nitty gritty, yeah.
    http://eu.battle.net...djYV!ZdX!aZZZbZ

    Pestilence, it just looks to be a great spell.
    http://eu.battle.net...djYV!Zdb!aaaZaZ


    #7 The End?

    If you're still reading, thanks for reading. Hopefully what I've put into word will give someone a new perspective on his or her own build. I'll say during the hours of thought I put into this my build has been smoothened out and evolved. If anyone have any thoughts on my ideas, the guide or just wanna call me a blazing idiot for writing a long !@# guide pre-release please gimmie a holler and I'll look at it :D

    Also, when I've hit level 60 and actually played the full build for a while I'll come back and revise the entire build based on my findings. And with the added -actual- knowledge of the game and it's inner workings.

    I wish you all the best of luck and fun in your Diablo III experience.



    Peace!

    Edit: What the hell is wrong with this editor, it keep adding in spaces and stuff where I just removed them after save >_> oh well, too lazy to sit around and fix it for infinity time
  • #2
    Nice build and good post, few things I would like to address though. It seems like you build is severely lack in a decent single target burst damage, you could struggle greatly against bosses and elites. By using Flaming Dart(160% dmg) rune instead of Splinters(60 %, three targets) I believe your build could become alot more effective. Also lack of self heals might be an issue, with Leeching Beast rune you would have a steady amount of health for your character.

    http://eu.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/witch-doctor#aSZVYj!ZdT!YcaZcZ

    I see your build becoming very good and definitely one of the better builds I've seen. Nice job
  • #3
    Haha you mindreader. Was just thinking almost exactly what you wrote on the first sentence of this guide. Good one, 1 point for you.
    Read my signature.
  • #4
    Quote from Clove248

    Nice build and good post, few things I would like to address though. It seems like you build is severely lack in a decent single target burst damage, you could struggle greatly against bosses and elites. By using Flaming Dart(160% dmg) rune instead of Splinters(60 %, three targets) I believe your build could become alot more effective. Also lack of self heals might be an issue, with Leeching Beast rune you would have a steady amount of health for your character.

    http://eu.battle.net...ZVYj!ZdT!YcaZcZ

    I see your build becoming very good and definitely one of the better builds I've seen. Nice job

    Hmm, I think you missed out on something posion dart with splinters does 180% weapon damage to a single target. It's three splinters in a row thus only hitting my primary target unless something runs in the way which would stop a flaming arrow aswell.

    And I actually got Leeching Beasts for my 60 build, I just removed it for the second build 'cause when that build becomes interesting is when I got the gear to support the dismissing some survival :)

    Thanks for the comments, and now I know I'm gonna have to clarify the text a bit.
    And, thanks for reading and for the good comments :)
  • #5
    Quote from seenUzehr

    Quote from Clove248

    Nice build and good post, few things I would like to address though. It seems like you build is severely lack in a decent single target burst damage, you could struggle greatly against bosses and elites. By using Flaming Dart(160% dmg) rune instead of Splinters(60 %, three targets) I believe your build could become alot more effective. Also lack of self heals might be an issue, with Leeching Beast rune you would have a steady amount of health for your character.

    http://eu.battle.net...ZVYj!ZdT!YcaZcZ

    I see your build becoming very good and definitely one of the better builds I've seen. Nice job

    Hmm, I think you missed out on something posion dart with splinters does 180% weapon damage to a single target. It's three splinters in a row thus only hitting my primary target unless something runs in the way which would stop a flaming arrow aswell.

    And I actually got Leeching Beasts for my 60 build, I just removed it for the second build 'cause when that build becomes interesting is when I got the gear to support the dismissing some survival :)

    Thanks for the comments, and now I know I'm gonna have to clarify the text a bit.
    And, thanks for reading and for the good comments :)

    Ah ok guess I misunderstood, in this case it seems all your bases are covered. You got a great build here and can definitely see this working. Once again good job :)
  • #6
    Quote from Clove248

    Ah ok guess I misunderstood, in this case it seems all your bases are covered. You got a great build here and can definitely see this working. Once again good job :)

    Thanks again :) I'm really looking forward to hitting 60 and start finding out what this build is worth. So I can write the revise of this guide with some numbers and whatnot :3

    Edit1: Also I'd like to know what you think about the overall writing and composition of the article itself, does anything need adding, removing or modification? :)
  • #7
    Quote from seenUzehr

    Quote from Clove248

    Ah ok guess I misunderstood, in this case it seems all your bases are covered. You got a great build here and can definitely see this working. Once again good job :)
    Also I'd like to know what you think about the overall writing and composition of the article itself, does anything need adding, removing or modification? :)

    You're doing perfectly fine, the organization and composition in your post is really easy to follow. I'm sure people will have no trouble understanding your guide. If you like you can add a good starter build for players first entering nightmare mode. From what I've read from a developer's comment, when finishing Diablo 3 on normal mode for the first time your character ends up being level 32-34 before moving on to playing nightmare mode. So try to make a viable build around that level range if you like. Really all that's left is to sit back and wait for Diablo 3 to come out and put your build to the test while making necessary adjustments if need to. I look forward to your guide I'm sure you'll do great
  • #8
    I will be honest, I didn't read it, but the build looks pretty good,
    "Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent. Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent. Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil? Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?"

    Epicurus
  • #9
    Quote from Clove248

    You're doing perfectly fine, the organization and composition in your post is really easy to follow. I'm sure people will have no trouble understanding your guide. If you like you can add a good starter build for players first entering nightmare mode. From what I've read from a developer's comment, when finishing Diablo 3 on normal mode for the first time your character ends up being level 32-34 before moving on to playing nightmare mode. So try to make a viable build around that level range if you like. Really all that's left is to sit back and wait for Diablo 3 to come out and put your build to the test while making necessary adjustments if need to. I look forward to your guide I'm sure you'll do great

    Hmm, yeah. Your probably correct about the mid-way build. Haven't thought about that at all to be honest. I shall remember to add that. We'll see if I can put together something around that level which will intrigue me :)

    However, doing builds in your head is a great way to burn throu those 8 hours at work.

    @ Antirepublican

    Hah, that's perfectly alright sir. writing the guide jut helped me alot while constructing the build. And decided to post it because I didn't want to make another "HAY GUISE LOOK AT ME BUILD --->". I wanted to add some on my thought processes around the choices I made in it. :*

    Thank you both, I'll try and add a midway build someday later.


    edit1: Man cooming up with a twink build was more fun than I had expected :) I did two on the Kinsman theme, however without Grave Injustice I don't -really- like the builds as much as I have to remove a CC to get Soul Harvest since my CDs won't be down as much on MC/Summon Dogs so I need to rely less on Sacrifice.

    One for firebats lovers like me who wanna get gritty with a shield and such:
    http://eu.battle.net...djYV!ZdX!aZZZbZ

    Perhaps a little too focused on life return, but I'll look into that when I get there and depending on what gear I've managed to scrounge :)

    One for Pestilence!
    http://eu.battle.net...djYV!Zdb!aaaZaZ
  • #10
    Changes 05/08

    * Aesthetic changes to the writing.
    * Added 34+ leveling builds

    :3
  • #11
    I can't tell whether or not the build is good, I guess that's just WD for ya right there.. xD Too much we don't know. What I do know though, is that Soul Harvest adds 650 intelligence which translates in to 650% weapondamage. That means if your weapon has a base DPS of 500 and you use it, it improves the dogs (9% weapondamage) average hit for dogs will go up by 292 damage, and your average poison dart (60% weapondamage) would deal 1950 extra damage per dart (with 3 darts per shot). And all other skills are affected in a similar manner. Firebats and all.

    Simply put it produces damage numbers so ridicilous I don't think any build can go without it.
  • #12
    Quote from BlackMarch

    I can't tell whether or not the build is good, I guess that's just WD for ya right there.. xD Too much we don't know. What I do know though, is that Soul Harvest adds 650 intelligence which translates in to 650% weapondamage. That means if your weapon has a base DPS of 500 and you use it, it improves the dogs (9% weapondamage) average hit for dogs will go up by 292 damage, and your average poison dart (60% weapondamage) would deal 1950 extra damage per dart (with 3 darts per shot). And all other skills are affected in a similar manner. Firebats and all.

    Simply put it produces damage numbers so ridicilous I don't think any build can go without it.

    The numbers seem incredible now, but remember they don't scale. Thus will become less and less effective, granted it's a given for any leveling build. But for late game, I think not.

    Don't see Blizzard making the entire class about a single skill, or lack thereof. However, Grasp can easily be swapped if it turns out that Soul Harvest is a must have for everything :) Since Soul Harvest is as much a defensive skill with it's +resistances as it is an offensive skill.
  • #13
    Quote from seenUzehr

    The numbers seem incredible now, but remember they don't scale. Thus will become less and less effective, granted it's a given for any leveling build. But for late game, I think not.

    Don't see Blizzard making the entire class about a single skill, or lack thereof. However, Grasp can easily be swapped if it turns out that Soul Harvest is a must have for everything :) Since Soul Harvest is as much a defensive skill with it's +resistances as it is an offensive skill.

    Not at all sure what you're talking about here... Soul Harvest scales every level, every level you get more intelligence per mob hit... Thus, scaling to be more and more damage all the way to inferno.

    Edit: Not to mention that it affects your weapon damage, which will also scale...
  • #14
    Quote from NektelMP

    Quote from seenUzehr

    The numbers seem incredible now, but remember they don't scale. Thus will become less and less effective, granted it's a given for any leveling build. But for late game, I think not.

    Don't see Blizzard making the entire class about a single skill, or lack thereof. However, Grasp can easily be swapped if it turns out that Soul Harvest is a must have for everything :) Since Soul Harvest is as much a defensive skill with it's +resistances as it is an offensive skill.

    Not at all sure what you're talking about here... Soul Harvest scales every level, every level you get more intelligence per mob hit... Thus, scaling to be more and more damage all the way to inferno.

    Edit: Not to mention that it affects your weapon damage, which will also scale...

    Yeah, but it stops at L60 at 130 int per monster up to 5 stacks. So 650 is max.

    So no, it doesn't scale atleast not with what matters. Only with level, which has a rather low cap. Which means, when you first hit 60 with shitty gear it's g-g-g-g-great. However a week or two into 60 with all the gear that promises and gems and what not, those 650 int will not have such a huge impact as before. Thus phasing out the skill in favour of something more CCish or defensive.

    You best come correct :D
  • #15
    Quote from gravvs

    Haha you mindreader. Was just thinking almost exactly what you wrote on the first sentence of this guide. Good one, 1 point for you.

    <3
  • #16
    Quote from seenUzehr

    Yeah, but it stops at L60 at 130 int per monster up to 5 stacks. So 650 is max.

    So no, it doesn't scale atleast not with what matters. Only with level, which has a rather low cap. Which means, when you first hit 60 with shitty gear it's g-g-g-g-great. However a week or two into 60 with all the gear that promises and gems and what not, those 650 int will not have such a huge impact as before. Thus phasing out the skill in favour of something more CCish or defensive.

    You best come correct :D

    I'm sorry... so I'll try to 'come correct' this time....

    So you're saying that skills damage difference doesn't matter either right? Hell zombie dogs and corpse spiders and all attacks might as well do 10% of weapon damage.... Oh wait they would suck? % damage scales period, else all skills would suck because they NEVER increase in % damage, so what? So you added a piece of gear that adds 500 damage? Guess what thats garbage, because with soul harvest it would be 3250... Again I'm failing to see how gear has annnnnnnnnnny effect what so ever on the bonus of 650% damage?

    Please clarify with actual logical facts other than 'only scales to 60'... Because what you're going past lvl 60?
  • #17
    Quote from NektelMP

    I'm sorry... so I'll try to 'come correct' this time....

    So you're saying that skills damage difference doesn't matter either right? Hell zombie dogs and corpse spiders and all attacks might as well do 10% of weapon damage.... Oh wait they would suck? % damage scales period, else all skills would suck because they NEVER increase in % damage, so what? So you added a piece of gear that adds 500 damage? Guess what thats garbage, because with soul harvest it would be 3250... Again I'm failing to see how gear has annnnnnnnnnny effect what so ever on the bonus of 650% damage?

    Please clarify with actual logical facts other than 'only scales to 60'... Because what you're going past lvl 60?

    Ok sorry, it scales extremely superwell. What'll most likely happen is that every build later on will need Soul Harvest or you be doomed. ~

    My point is that 650 int will stopping having the huge impact on spells that it has early on, thus allowing to deviate from the Soul Harvest + other skills build that'll most likely be very prominent early on.

    Also 500+650 != 3250

    Extra extra: We have 11 item slots, yes?

    In beta we had about 5-10 int per item slot. So a median of 7 per slot. 7*11= 77int and at L13 beta we got 31 int per charge (iirc) 31*5 = 155. Oh man, a 200% (+1 int) boost in overall damage. This is huge, this is major, if we can get this skill we must.

    And now to the true theorizisation.

    60:
    Let's pick 500 int per piece of item (Haven't check up on what the best gems give yet, but I think 500 per item is a low count). 500*11 = 5500. The 650 int from Soul Harvest will now only be an addition of 11%.

    See the difference here? Early on it was a massive +200% in later theory it's only roughly 10% in comparison to to where our theorized gear puts us.

    This is why Soul Harvest becomes less and less useful the better gear you get, thus not scaling very well. And here is why there's no Soul Harvest in any of my late game build in favour of Grasp of the Dead.

    edit1: Come to think of it, I should probably add something to the guide about not picking Soul Harvest :3
  • #18
    Quote from NektelMP

    Quote from seenUzehr

    Yeah, but it stops at L60 at 130 int per monster up to 5 stacks. So 650 is max.

    So no, it doesn't scale atleast not with what matters. Only with level, which has a rather low cap. Which means, when you first hit 60 with shitty gear it's g-g-g-g-great. However a week or two into 60 with all the gear that promises and gems and what not, those 650 int will not have such a huge impact as before. Thus phasing out the skill in favour of something more CCish or defensive.

    You best come correct :D

    I'm sorry... so I'll try to 'come correct' this time....

    So you're saying that skills damage difference doesn't matter either right? Hell zombie dogs and corpse spiders and all attacks might as well do 10% of weapon damage.... Oh wait they would suck? % damage scales period, else all skills would suck because they NEVER increase in % damage, so what? So you added a piece of gear that adds 500 damage? Guess what thats garbage, because with soul harvest it would be 3250... Again I'm failing to see how gear has annnnnnnnnnny effect what so ever on the bonus of 650% damage?

    Please clarify with actual logical facts other than 'only scales to 60'... Because what you're going past lvl 60?

    I think we need to define the term "scaling". seenUzehr's point is that no matter how good gear you get at level 60, Soul Harvest will still add the same int. Hench, it will NOT scale. Compare that do Zombie Dogs, where your weapon damage will ultimately decide how much damage you Zombie Dogs will do.
  • #19
    Revisit of the Kinsman

    Due to Zombie Dogs sucking ass, a true revision will come at a later time when and if the dogs and/or inferno gameplay has been altered.

    As of current viability:

    Mid hell is when the dogs phase out of the game, the damage from the explosions with current gear (30k-ish) become neglible. Most of the assumptions/statements still hold true thou, except the dog-thing. Which happens to be quite a big part of it all :3

    Pestilence with Sacrifice as a finisher is what works best for that, with heavy 2hand dps + crit/crit damage.


    /me goes back to splinterspec and goblin farming. adios, for now.
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