Image by @holyknight3000
With the potential halfway point of Season 12 quickly approaching, now is a great time to take another look at the Leaderboards and see what sorts of changes, if any, have shaken up the solo builds for each class. While some classes maintain their status quo from the last time we looked, there are a few interesting newcomers to discuss. Let's go!
Natalya/Marauder Demon Hunter
Remember when I said to put a bookmark down for revisiting Demon Hunter builds later? Well, welcome back to a new (old) build! This duo-set setup combines six pieces of Natalya's Vengeance with four pieces of Embodiment of the Marauder to deal out slow, steady, and deadly damage over the course of high-level Greater Rifts. Typical to Sentry-styled play, the main objective is to gather tons of enemies, let your Sentries whittle them down over time, and continue to kite the monsters around to ensure your survival. With movement, resources, and skill deployment to manage all at once, this build asks a lot of players that choose to use it, but the results are great. Clears in the high 100s range have started to pour in. Again, continue to keep your eye on Demon Hunter as even pure Marauder builds are popping up here and there with great potential.
Raekor/Immortal King Furious Charge Barbarian
While HOTA may have been a popular blast from the past to discuss last time around, the theme of mixed sets continues with this classic Barbarian staple. Bringing together six pieces of the Immortal King's Call set along with four pieces of The Legacy of Raekor set is nothing new. However, this season, it's performing particularly well as a high-tier Greater Rift build due to its new damage ceiling potential. While the Greater Rifts and particular Rift Guardians that it can manage will require a heavy level of fishing, it's believed that this may be the Barbarian's most capable setup. Don't count out Wrath of the Wastes Whirlwind builds though, as they have emerged at the tail end of previous seasons and could vie to unseat the Charge Barb.
Delsere's Magnum Opus Frozen Orb Wizard
While the channeling Meteor builds (both Firebird and Tal Rasha flavors) continue to occupy many of the top Greater Rift clear spots for Wizards, another non-Archon-centered build has entered the fray. Yes, Delsere's Magnum Opus and Arcane Orb - Frozen Orb have united to push Wizards forward with another GR110+ capable build. The playstyle for this build puts the Wizard at range, taking advantage of the double explosion properties of the Frozen Orb at the end of its travel path. Smart positioning and good mob management are the keys to victory here. If you'd like to take a break from dropping Meteors on demon heads, give this powerful alternative a serious look.
Rathma Skeletal Mage Necromancer
As previously discussed, the way to the top as a solo Necromancer is through a sea of Corpse Lances, supported by the Pestilence Master's Shroud set. However, another build all DPS Necromancers should be well-versed in is the Rathma Skeletal Mage setup, utilizing the Singularity rune on the Mages. This particular build is the infamous destroyer of "Rat Runs". For those not quite familiar, Rat Runs are a speed composition for 4-player groups that, when run correctly, yield the highest amount of experience a player can gain per hour. The four members of the party are Support Barbarian, Support Necromancer, and two Rathma Skeletal Mage Necromancers. This quad squad rolls as one unit through the rift, hurrying from elite to elite, and murdering anything that gets in the way of that endeavor. The runs can clear Greater Rifts 95-105 in an average of 3 minutes. If you're aiming to achieve your highest Paragon level yet, familiarize yourself here and go forth as a Rat.
4 Players Arachyr Firebats Witch Doctor
Witch Doctors really haven't seen much in the way of diversity in their Greater Rift clears. Arachyr Firebats continues to dominate the solo Leaderboards and also simultaneously cements its place in the 4-player Greater Rift pushing meta. Other setups, like Jade Harvester, may be worth watching as they have cleared some decently high Greater Rifts, too, but for the ease in one stop shopping, you can't beat Arachyr and the spinning bats. This particular version is tuned for dominance in 4-player groups and will undoubtedly be a part of the highest group clear that we see by the end of the season. We highlight this build because...
...those Witch Doctors don't go anywhere without their Support Monks. Sunwuko Wave of Light continues to dominate the best Monk marks when it comes to solo Greater Rifts (and also when it comes to speedfarming regular rifts), so there isn't much news to report there. However, the Support Monk continues to be a mainstay in the 4-player Greater Rift pushing meta. Introduced after the destruction of the Support Crusader and Support Witch Doctor, Support Monk has had a presence in one way or another when it comes to high-tier GR clears. Familiarity with this build will grant you a place in parties that take your Legendary gems to their highest heights, which will support both your augmenting as well as your solo pushing builds. Hold that Witch Doctor's hand and destroy all the things.
Holy Shotgun Crusader
Condemn is still king. All hail Condemn. The Akkhan set does still have room to support other builds though and another antiquated and quite popular build was the Holy Shotgun Crusader. Utilizing Fate of the Fell and now in its reborn iteration the Ivory Tower, this build is on the opposite side of the spectrum from Condemn. It's much tankier and doesn't dole out all of its damage right away. Instead, another shield introduced after the irrelevance of the original Holy Shotgun, the Shield of Fury, grants this build its ultimate power in providing an uncapped stacking mechanic that makes each hit of your Heaven's Fury more powerful than the last. Patience and fishing will allow you to take this build higher up the Greater Rift chain, but it likely will never hold a candle to Condemn. For the sake of variety, though, this is a very different option you may choose to explore.
Thus concludes our mid-season dive into what our heroes have been up to. Are there any builds that you're finding particularly awesome? Some build you'd love to see receive more love? Tell us in the comments section! Sharing is caring after all.
Leviathan (@LeviathanD3) is a content creator for Diablo Fans and a Hardcore Crusader for life. You can likely catch him streaming high Leaderboard/Conquest rank attempts unless he's out taking photographs or discovering new music.