Tank leecher build creation - input needed

  • #1
    Hello there fellow wizards, im trying to make a tanking wizard build taking 1.0.4 changes into mind, and you might help with it!

    WW is getting nerfed, and tbh i have never liked it much becouse its heavely gear dependant and expensive, and since im HC players its not good thing. I need something affordable, yet effective.

    So far i have came up with this, taking patch changes into account, without having to rely on arcane power on crit gear (which as i said is freakin expensive):


    Some skill explanation:
    Spectral blade - Healing blades: Its strong, its free, it heals you by nicely utilizing crit mass gear

    Meteor - Comet: Getting buffed a lot, snares, procs Cold Blooded (chilled frozen emenies now take 20% more dmg from all sources not just cold, making spectral blades even stronger)

    Forst Nova - Deep freeze: No brainer.

    Diamond skin - Crystal shell: No brainer.

    Magic weapon - Blood magic: This is definitely something a lot of ppl would not use, but as i said, this is supposed to be hardcore survival tank build, utilizing high hp, armor, resists and hp regen for the sake of sacrificing dps. Hp jumping up and down like crazy is not an option.Also i guess it has nice synergy with healing blades and crit/regen gear.

    Ice armor - Crystalize: Another controversy. When fully stacked up after patch, it adds 90% armor and chills/freezes enemies hitting you. You can say that Prismatic armor gives more protection (65% armor, 40% resistance), but it also lowers your arcane power, and thus not allowing us to cast 2 Comets in row. Also, enemies hitting Ice armor are being snared (giving HC player time to run) or frozen (giving HC player time to atack), while not reducing our AP. Last but not least, it procs Cold Blooded on enemy.

    Blur - A must have for any HC wizard.
    Critical Mass - we are doing CM build right?
    Cold Blooded - This helps a lot, sadly that means no space for Galvanizing ward.


    Armor, resists, int, vita, hp regen, crit, crit dmg, ias, loh. AP on crit is not needed.

    Frostburn gauntlets adding up to 30% cold dmg is huge.
    Fragmet of destiny wand adding up to another 25% of cold dmg and up to 30% spectral blade dmg, making it ideal tool.
    String of ears belt - up to 20% melee dmg reduction, the best stuff you can get for melee char.
    Shield - Either Lidless Wall with Spectral Blade, Meteor dmg buff, or Ivory tower/Stormshield for additional melee defense.

    Using Spectral blades and Meteor instead of WW and Explosion gives us more versatility in kiting and focusing down dangerous foes, instead of casting a lot of random aoe, hoping to kill what we need. Nuke ability, mobility, possibility to retreat (easy when all you do snares enemy) and constant stream of heal is what every HC player is looking for.

    Now, your input. No trolls pls.
    Rencol - Diablo fan since 1996 and walking encyclopedia of Diablo lore.
  • #2
    Cmon, nobody here who tried this? Or some volunteer who will try it after patch for me? Coz im not getting home to my PC till the end of week :(
    Rencol - Diablo fan since 1996 and walking encyclopedia of Diablo lore.
  • #3
    Rencol, a lot of theorycraft has gone into melee wizard and critical mass tanking builds. Yours is similar to an early version of it. Most of the optimization of the build has gone into optimzing critical mass to the point where Frost Nova and Diamond Skin can be up 100% of the time or very close to it. Some things I will mention:

    The proc coefficient on spells is one of the most important thing to understand for builds like this. When you score a critical hit, this coefficient is the change for critical mass to trigger. When you use life on hit, this coefficient is the percentage of your life on hit that is granted. I believe it also effects arcane power on crit as well but it may not.

    For Spectral Blade versions the proc coefficient on deep cuts is considerably higher than on any of the other runes so it is generally used. With a solid amount of life on hit this will work out to more healing than healing blades will, while making diamond skin and frost nova available more often. Too that end this build eventually evolved to using Energy Twister (Wicked Wind) because it generated so many more procs than spectral blades/meteor. This version stacks up to ~20 arcane power on crit and uses explosive blast (chain reaction) to deal most of its damage in addition to wicked wind. Energy Twister and all of its runes had their proc coefficient cut in half in patch 1.04 because they would proc legendary items to easily. I'm not sure if that change makes spectral blade the way to go again or not but for a spectral blade build, you should look at the following changes:

    1) Deep Cuts will give you more healing than Healing Blades assuming you can get yourself around 800-1000 total life on hit.
    2) Comet is not needed to trigger Cold Blooded, you should have very high uptime on Frost Nova CCs if you are optimizing this correctly, which will trigger the frozen condition needed for Cold Blooded. It should be noted that the "change" in the patch notes to cold blooded is a tooltip correction, as it works this way in 1.0.3.
    3) Even with the reduction in monster damage and the buffs to Ice Armor, I just don't see this build working without either Force Armor or Prismatic Armor runes from Energy Armor.
    4) Teleport (Fracture) or Teleport (Safe Passage) are extremely useful skills to have in a build like this and I don't think Force Weapon really makes enough of a difference in a tank focused build to justify not having one of these.
    5) Gearing for this build is very specific. Critical Mass demands high crit chance mixes with some improved attack speed, and usually some life on hit and arcane power on crit to run the engine for you. Tanking demands bonus armor, resist all, and at least a respectable amount of vitality. Dealing enough damage for solo play involves stacking intelligence and Crit Damage, so you're going to be pulled in a lot of different directions and finding the right balance is tricky.

    I'll be trying some wicked wind variations when I get home from work to see if they are still the way to go or if the proc nerf kills it.
  • #4
    Oh thanks for long reply, i had no idea that dot from deep cuts can trigger critical mass or loh :/ Good to know, thx.

    I know there have been a lot of builds like this, but i havent seen one yet utilizing cold dmg and snares to this extend (comet, everybody goes for star pact).

    Regarding the energy armor vs ice armor, as i said i wanted to make use of enemies being frozen when they get out of nova, also being able to cast 2 comets at once (not possible with energy armor AP debuff).

    Not sure about teleport tho, for im not having illusionist in this build and immortal minions are removed from game while shielded elites are nerfed to ground (only one shielded at a time). Having constant stream of healing bonus, with dps bonus to compensate usage of shield and not focus item seems better solution to me.

    One more question - does aoe dot left on ground after meteor (comet) crits and triggers loh?
    Rencol - Diablo fan since 1996 and walking encyclopedia of Diablo lore.
  • #5
    Something else almost no one knows is the spectral blades deep cuts dot also procs arcane dynamo passive making it about 3-4 times better than the overused yet silly cold blooded passive that requires frost nova which is almost obsolete with current gear (although ice armor might be used now instead letting you have 75+20% dmg on meteors).

    Meteor is a good choice, when you get more ap on crit, around 15-20 you can change the rune to molten impact for more damage and not worry about AP running out. The higher damage and lower frequency of molten impact lets you get 5stacked arcane dynamo meteors every time as it only takes one spectral blades cast to get 5stacks. To answer your question every tick of meteor has a 25% loh/CS coefficient.

    Magic weapon is a good choice, if you get it at all though you might as well go for force weapon because the life steal is debuffed in inferno, and you don't really need it with enough life on hit as long as you keep diamond skin up. An alternative to magic weapon you might think about is hydra, in the rare case that you have to really kite something it ends up helping you more than the extra dps.

    As for gear. In my opinion string of ears is a complete waste of stats. 20% is still expensive for some reason and you lose a ton of armor/resists/dps.

    Another thing I find unnecessary is life regeneration. To benefit fully from it, you need to have a lot, and not only that you need to have high hp because otherwise you just sit on max hp and it does nothing. Another factor is diamond skin which also prevents it from affecting you. A better alternative is to get from 500 to 1000life on hit. Although it is affected by the same factors, you only need to have it on 1-2 slots, where as life regen takes up a stat on every piece of gear.

    As for the gloves, it seems by the tooltip that they only increase the damage on abilities that already do frost damage. You also lose a lot of defensive stats and more importantly up to 10% crit from this slot, which might end up giving you more dps overall in the end.

    Overall this is exactly the first version of the critical mass melee wizard build before wicked wind became popular. I used a similiar version, with prismatic armor and venom hydra instead of magic weapon and cleared inferno without too many problems and I only had around 15-20k dps back then. One of the few enemies of meteor is fast monsters, but to compensate you absolutely destroy waller and ranged monsters compared to WW/EB builds.
  • #6
    Oh, thx a lot for info. I have always been using standard kiting build so i dont know much about tanking ones.

    Ok, so if i use frost nova, does it consume arcane dynamo stacks? How should final build look like (HC version)?
    Rencol - Diablo fan since 1996 and walking encyclopedia of Diablo lore.
  • #7
    Now that I tried the patch it turns out they nerfed arcane dynamo I can't even believe it since almost noone used it and its useless again.
  • #8
    Quote from Aggnog

    Now that I tried the patch it turns out they nerfed arcane dynamo I can't even believe it since almost noone used it and its useless again.

    O_O Hidden nerf they were afraid to tell us about? So what are the options right now?
    Rencol - Diablo fan since 1996 and walking encyclopedia of Diablo lore.
  • #9
    Well im still using it, spectral blades also procs LOH less than before, not sure by how much but it just feels low.
  • #10

    that's my build / itemset that i am using on HC.

    Worked before 1.04 and it works now even better since meteor got buffed. (tho my killing speed is about the same)
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