[Guide] Black Ice

  • #1
    I returned to D3 recently and received a bunch of quality advice from a number of kind people on these forums. I was low in resources, 200k and my gear was very outdated. I want to share what I have learned in my short journey so far. I ended up using a Black Ice/Blizzard build because it was cheap. Here is my story. This build is not original https://us.battle.ne...opic/7681548262 I cannot play without Teleport and Hydra is unnecessary DPS. IMO Black Ice and Blizzard is all you need.

    The Build . http://us.battle.net...QSTj!ZXW!cbYZaa as I use it
    My current gear http://us.battle.net...97/hero/4552603




    The Active Skills

    Ray of Frost

    Black Ice is the way to go here. At 504% weapon damage, if used properly it can melt mobs. It self propagates meaning a creature dying to black ice will make more black ice. If you use terrain to your advantage you can watch mobs kill themselves. I will try to show this in the new video.

    Snowblast is actually very useful in some multiplayer games. At MP8-10 if your DPS is not high enough that you are getting a reasonable amount of black ice you should switch to this rune. 364% weapon damage is very helpful with elites, golblins rares and bosses.

    Sleetstorm can be used but only when your gear makes you more tanky. This plays more like a tank and can be impressive but certain affixes will make you a little nuts. 364% AOE with a blizzard on your head is pretty fun though.

    I do not like the other rune choices.

    Blizzard

    The build is called Black Ice but I think it should be called Snowbound(maybe, Black Ice sounds cooler though). Blizzard at only 20 AP is one the best skills available to us. Nearly any death can be prevented with another Blizzard. The benefits from the other runes are nothing compared to only 20 AP. Nothing is more critical to this build than being able to cast a Blizzard when you need one. The synergy with black ice can be hurt if you freeze the mobs apart, black ice is a small radius. Extra duration is not as good as casting a second blizzard. Increased radius is not as good as 2 blizzards. Snowbound is king here. LoH works nice with a lot of blizzards and the new monster density so having some mixed in to your gear is great.

    Armor

    Storm armor

    I like Reactive for solo play. The mobs are going to be on you. LS does proc on this so it is a damage shield. You know your gear is appropriate for the MP level when some mobs one shot themselves attacking you.

    Power of the storm is very useful if you gear does not support RoF AP. It will usually always fix the problem but it does slow down farming somewhat so it is not ideal or a good long term solution. It can get you through gear gaps.

    Energy Armor.

    Pinpoint Barrier is my rune choice for MP 8-9-10 group play. I need the extra crit without the scoundrel because the elite fights are longer, more crit equals more AP when geared with AP on crit. I lways use this on group play now. Mobs do not stick to me enough to make reactive armor worth it. With Cold Blooded on d3 up my DPS goes up to 285k and 304k vs elites.

    Prismatic barrier, every time I think I need it my gear is not good enough for the MP I am playing, moving back one MP is the right choice if you think you need this. The other alternative is more EHP on your gear (better).

    Magic Weapon

    Force weapon is the way to go here. I have used conduit if I need a small bump in AP because of my gear. Blood magic could be useful if your weapon does not supply enough LS.

    Familiar

    Spark Flint is a nice DPS boost. Arcanot can be used if you are having serious AP issues or if you do not want to use Astral presence.

    Teleport

    I can’t play without this. I only use Fracture. I am sure someone could play without it. Experiment here if you like but this builds biggest weakness is to CC. I love teleport fracture.

    Slow Time
    I have started experimenting with this in group play. The 20% damagefrom Time Warp seems to speed group clearing, it appears to be a fair trade of against personal surviviability of teleport I would only use with high EHP stats.

    Passive Skills

    Cold blooded. No explanation necessary. Use it

    Astral Presence. I have tried to use other things. I find this mandatory as well. Running out of AP for just a second can kill you while tanking a reflective elite while standing in some evil poop on the ground.

    I mess around with the third one often and it usually about gear, MP level, group or Solo. Glass cannon at lower MP with high DPS is very productive. Blur is nice at higher MP. I have recently settled on Unstable Anomaly because I die very infrequently, but when I do it is usually an unlucky set of circumstance that UA prevents. Others have used Power Hungry/ with pick up radius. I am not found of that option. I like to go after other stats on my gear.

    The Gear

    The build is trying to leverage High Weapon Damage combined with no IAS stats. This helps with cost. Trifecta gear is very expensive. IAS actually hurts this build. Crit chance a Crit damage are key the higher the better. 50 CC and 500 CD is sweet.


    Weapons

    Skorn

    I prefer a high LS one. You can make due at very low MP with LoH if you cast a lot of blizzards. Crit Damage, Intelligence and Average dam are key here. This build is possible with a triumvirate and 1 hnd black weapon damage weapon and make sure have 2 sources of AP on Crit. I have not tested it myself so I cannot comment on it. It should work. A lower speed 1hnd would be helpful to you

    Helm
    If you are planning on Tal’s 4 piece set bonus the guise of wisdom is you choice here. I prefer Storm Crow as your CC increase so I can use AP on crit instead of Tal 4 piece

    Amulet
    Tal allegiance’s W/CC is must if using Tal 4 piece You want a good one, your amulet provides a lot of stats. If using a storm crow, craft one with High CC and CD with other good stats.

    Chest
    Tals relentless pursuit or a Zuni Marrow here. A nice crafted one with work as well. Tyreals Might could be awesome but the ones you want are crazy expensive. 3 Sockets and high stats. The Tal chest will inflate your DPS do not be fooled. The IAS DPS increase hurts, not help.

    Shoulders
    Craft or vile ward

    Gloves
    Craft high CC,INT CD gloves EHP here helpful

    Belt
    Tal belt or rare. Get some EHP here

    Legs
    I prefer Depth Diggers with big stats but there are a few options here. Get EHP here for sure

    Boots
    Zuni Trail is what I use. If I could find the tight Ice climbers with MS that did not break the bank I would. I cant find them at a bargain. I love the zunI 2 and 3 piece set bionus for this build though.

    Rings
    I use a Zuni Pox with High CC here but it is not a must. Other rings make great options. Go after your core stats here, high CC and CD int and EHP stats too.

    My current gear level farms MP8 with speed solo and I can hang in MP9 and 10 group play. MP9 is better because there are way more leechers in MP10. The key to group play is blizzard and not RoF. Cover the board with them, WW barbs go everywhere, one should always be centered on the CM wizard at all times too. One centered on you as well.

    Remember, this build is about Life Return, D3 is fast and dynamic, casting your blizzards where you anticipate the mobs are going to be is key. Once you become good at this, this build is freakin awesome. Good luck. Look for new video here in the upcoming days.

    Everything you attack, cold blooded applies because all of your dps is frost, so the effective DPS is higher than listed. Pretty much everything you attack has a bizzard on top of it as well. This is why every time I try archon I go back to black ice. On d3up my effectve DPS is 285k and 304k vs elites.


    Use a calculator or spreadsheet and know your conversions. Bagstone’s gear guide is an absolute must, it contains so much information, it is embarrassing when he answers your questions pointing to the guide and you have already read it and he has linked it for you previously(It has happened to me). http://www.diablofan...ard-gear-guide/
  • #2
    Awesome story, man. Nice to see that you've improved so much in so little time, that's the power of the forums :P

    Looking forward to try this some time.
  • #3
    Yay, this is nice. I'd like to give you so many +1s for this, because...

    ... you show a nice alternative build to the typical CMWW/Archon boredom that involves either smashing four keyboard buttons a hundred times a second or keep one mouse button pressed for an hour.
    ... you highlight exactly the same basic needs that I have (for example, just like you I also can't live without Teleport).
    ... you achieve all of this with a really really low budget build (and don't do this by creating a ridiculous Youtube video showing some good AH snipes but link to a character that makes the story believable).
    ... you link to some guide that looks interesting ;-) (although there's no need to be embarrassed, it's so long and such a wall of text, I'm not sure myself what I have covered and what things I forgot)

    I really really want to see more alternative builds and success stories, because I think there are specs outside of CMWW/Archon that have a viable future in this game. At least I hope so. For as long as 90% of wizards have either CM or Archon in their main spec, I'll +1 any other build suggested. Also added this to the build section. Diversity! Yay!
  • #4
    Hi Magus,

    I noticed you got some "mildly" expensive gear, like the Tals Amulet, Strongarm Bracers and Depth Diggers... So, my question is about cost: how much (give or take) did you spend on your gear ?

    I think the build is nice, and I think I'll try it later, but I'm feeling a little disapointed with my Wiz right now. I don't like CMWW much (it hurts my hand badly) and archon on higher MP's are just expensive.

    Also, by my math, you have about 14 AP/sec, and spends 16 AP/sec using Ray of Frost. That means spending about 2/sec, and if you throw any blizzard, it means you have about 50 secs to spam it before running out of AP.

    How much kiting you have to do with this build ?

    Thanks! And congratulations again!

    (edit: I just saw you have reduced cost to blizzard)
  • #5
    I currently use a ray of frost build as well. I use Arcane Dynamo as a passive, get 5 stacks of it, and melt whatever I hit with ray of frost (snow blast). I use a helm and source with arcane power on crit and this allows me to spam ray of frost for a long time. It's always fun to try something new besides the same builds everyone else uses.
  • #6
    Quote from Bribous

    Hi Magus,

    I noticed you got some "mildly" expensive gear, like the Tals Amulet, Strongarm Bracers and Depth Diggers... So, my question is about cost: how much (more or less) did you spend on your gear ?

    I think the build is nice, and I think I'll try it later, but I'm feeling a little disapointed with my Wiz right now. I don't like CMWW much (it hurts my hand badly) and archon on higher MP's are just expensive.

    Also, by my math, you have about 14 AP/sec, and spends 16 AP/sec using Ray of Frost. That means spending about 2/sec, and if you throw any blizzard, it means you have about 50 secs to spam it before running out of AP.

    How much kiting you have to do with this build ?

    Thanks! And congratulations again!

    (edit: I just saw you have reduced cost to blizzard)


    Not much kiting at all on MP5. Most builds probably move away from mobs when fighting elites or rares. I move to them, I am getting good at putting them on Black Ice 387% weapon damage. When I go up in MP I need to use Arcanot or Power of the Storm because stuff takes longer to kill. Not worth it to me. I will stay on MP5 because I can fly. I got a 25 million drop (1 hnd set crowwsbow) And generally I have upgraded at a profit. Whaaaat? Well my previous items I bought on bids with short timers, so when I resell them I have a few times made over a million by uprgading. The Tal amulet I paid a lot(17 million on a bid) for and before I got it I was using Armor of the Storm. All my other pieces I have purchased under 8 million.

    You can get very good stuff for pretty cheap without IAS, not syaing you don't have to work the AH for it. But can find diamonds in the rough though. Zuni pox I got really cheap. Everyone wants crit chance, the high average damage and socket make it the same DPS as ones that 3-4 crit chance that sell for tens of millions. Have a spreadsheet or use a website and work it, people are looking for perfect items, find not perfect ones and make them work for you. I also VERY rarely buy anything on a buyout. My gloves I got fir 7 milllion, I think I sold my old ones for over 5 million.

    EDIT went home for linch and looked at auction ledger...Memory isnt as good as I thought..fixing some prices

    Couple things, the build was very playable before I got the better gear, its how I got the better gear, fast efficient farming, just kept moving up MP as I increase gear. 4 Piece Tal is fairly new to me. I actually used to have higher stats, My EHP is better now. Think 39% crit and 480 crit damage.
  • #7
    Really similar to my build, although i use cold blood rune on RoF, since i don't use tal'rasha's set.
    Those Who Do Not Know True Pain Cannot Possibly Understand True Peace...
  • #8
    Quote from Kallizk

    Really similar to my build, although i use cold blood rune on RoF, since i don't use tal'rasha's set.


    Experiment with Black Ice, use arcanot or power of the storm with astral presence to suppliment AP, snowbound too. With the improvements to blizzard snowbound might be one of the best runes there is period, I can cast it all over. On act 3 with the tons of mobs, once you get black ice going the mobs just melt and RoF uptime goes WAY down therefore you need much less AP. It's really sick to be honest, A blizzard on top, holy crap !!! It plays like archon did on inferno.
  • #9
    I have never made a video and posted it. I would love to do an act 3 Alkaiser run and show people what I am doing. I honestly do not know if it is good or not. I sometimes kite a little, you do what the situation warrants, I try to kite forward though, more LS when Blizzard is on more mobs. Is it simple to capture gameplay and link it? I would also be willing to group with anyone wants, I am sure I can do it duo without your help. When I get in the lead in 4 man runs I do just fine until people catrch up.
  • #10
    you should invest some time in crafting. the int ranges you can get should surpass the dps you're getting from your shoulders, gloves, bracers pretty easily (maybe time consuming to get the right equipment, but it's worth it).
  • #11
    Quote from JKlimek

    you should invest some time in crafting. the int ranges you can get should surpass the dps you're getting from your shoulders, gloves, bracers pretty easily (maybe time consuming to get the right equipment, but it's worth it).


    I have been trying....RNG has been treating me very poorly. What I REALLY want is near perfect skorn, but yeah, Ill keep plugging along with trying for all three of those.
  • #12
    Its fun till u realise u can just pop improved archon and farm mp7 easy
    Then u get top notch gear and u realise than u can still die on mp9 and 10 due to archon form not being immune to cc like berserker
    So ure tied to run CM wizzard and go nuts spamming 3 buttons non stop <---- i hate CM so i said byebye to my wizz ;(

    im playing with gear around 1.5b budget and played all chars over paragon 40. Wiz is my favourite but it just sucks to have no option other than CM for mp10 farm (end game)
    ✯ ✯ ✯ ✯ ✯ YAVYRED ✯ ✯ ✯ ✯ ✯
  • #13
    Quote from Penduliar

    Its fun till u realise u can just pop improved archon and farm mp7 easy
    Then u get top notch gear and u realise than u can still die on mp9 and 10 due to archon form not being immune to cc like berserker
    So ure tied to run CM wizzard and go nuts spamming 3 buttons non stop <---- i hate CM so i said byebye to my wizz ;(

    im playing with gear around 1.5b budget and played all chars over paragon 40. Wiz is my favourite but it just sucks to have no option other than CM for mp10 farm (end game)


    Maybe...but hoping for different outcome. Ray of Frost is getting buffed next patch, combine that with I think I have room to double my DPS, It will be interesting to try MP10 with the build. It is what it is. Just going from P23 to P100 is going help me tons.
  • #14
    Wizard
    • Galvanizing Ward Increases the duration of your Armor spells by 120 seconds. As long as an Armor spell is active, you gain 310620 Life per second. / The following skills are improved: / *Energy Armor / *Ice Armor / *Storm Armor
    • Ray of Frost Cost: 16 Arcane Power / Project a beam of frozen ice that blasts 215280% weapon damage as Cold to the first enemy it hits, slowing the target's movement by 60% for 4 seconds.
      • Snow Blast : Using continuously on a single target increases damage over 1.5 seconds to inflict a maximum of 280364% weapon damage as Cold.
      • Sleet Storm : Create a swirling storm around you, dealing 280364]% weapon damage as Cold to all enemies caught within it.
      • Black Ice : Enemies killed with Ray of Frost leave behind a patch of ice that deals 387504% weapon damage as Cold to enemies moving through it over 3 seconds.
    Are you kidding? I want the patch NOW!!!!!! This build will be very viable...holy crap
  • #15
    Yeah, saw it as well. Black Ice will be an insane skill, turning what is already a very good single target skill into an AoE monster.
  • #16
    Hopefully itemisation patch makes frostburn gaunlets viable and it will merge well with this build...especially since that datamined PTR info looks good.

    I am going to try this build out but with a few changes:
    Will try the passive 'power hungry' over 'astral presence'
    Will use MW blood magic and opt for 1h weapon plus off hand (Tal Rasha's Unwavering Glare with blizzard skill) over skorn.
    Will try using slow time 'time warp' - instead of teleport

    looking forward to the next PTR build now
  • #17
    Quote from CheehC

    Hopefully itemisation patch makes frostburn gaunlets viable and it will merge well with this build...especially since that datamined PTR info looks good.

    I am going to try this build out but with a few changes:
    Will try the passive 'power hungry' over 'astral presence'
    Will use MW blood magic and opt for 1h weapon plus off hand (Tal Rasha's Unwavering Glare with blizzard skill) over skorn.
    Will try using slow time 'time warp' - instead of teleport

    looking forward to the next PTR build now


    If you want to go 1h/oh, I would suggest picking up some APOC. The faster attack speed gets you burning ap quickly. I play this sometimes in full attack speed gear, sitting around 460k buffed DPS. Even cutting attack speed down, I notice I need a bit more ap for continual skill usage.

    I hope that the legendary revamp takes a look at storm crow. If its going to be a top end wizard hat, and only spawn one random skill, it SHOULD be given a socket base, since that tends to determine an item's usability. Remove the silly fireball component...it's not really storm themed.
  • #18
    I run with 19 or 20 APoC and it works wonders.
  • #19
    I added a short video to the OP. I am not a very good player and this is my first youtube video so be gentle :). This is a first take, not patient enough to record a bunch for the perfect setup. I hope it shows what the build does.
  • #20
    Hiya! I am currently looking into building a wizard using this build as I am a sucker for non-cookiecutter builds!
    I was wondering whether it'd be possible to run this build with a 1h mace/spear + a triumvirate w/ apoc instead of a Skorn? If you ran with a Storm Crow as well, you could sit at 20 apoc. Would that be enough to keep the channel going at an attack speed between 1.2 and 1.5? Or is it only viable with a Skorn for the lower attack speed and hence AP consumption?
    Further, Ive done a bit of looking into it and I'd be able to hit around 600k ehp (with 91% mitigation) and ~220k dps unbuffed on my budget - how would it hold up on MP10? Trash farm I dare say would be possible, but would it be efficient?
    And would it actually be possible to solo elites and even ubers using it (would obviously change some things around for ubers, i.e. using another RoF rune)?

    Hope someone here has tried it out and can help me decide on whether to invest all my gold into this!
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