As it currently stands there are two widely accepted and most efficient strategies for Monks to farm in terms of their Skill Build: A Dual-Wielding Build with Cyclones, and using a Two-Handed Tempest Rush Build. Dual-Wielding Build's cater more towards high Monster Power Farming and Uber Boss kills. Tempest Rush Builds on the other hand, are tuned more towards blasting through lower Monster Power levels at high speed in order to capitalize on easy kills and populated Mob areas. Currently, a Tempest Rush Build is accepted by most as the fastest way to farm Paragon on the way to Level 100. At max Paragon level some say it is the fastest way to farm items as well. This guide will serve as an introduction for the basic concepts you should grasp in order to use the Tempest Rush Build effectively. The goal is to help you understand and then expand on the Build when you know a bit more of what you are doing. Keep in mind that the Build discussed will be catered more towards those who are just starting out with this spec and as you get more advanced you will deviate from this base Build.
Please read the guide in its entirety as there are several concepts that are introduced in its basic form early and expanded on later in the guide.
This is the build we will be focusing on: http://us.battle.net...TSYk!UdZ!cZYYca
-Tempest Rush: Tailwind - The ability the guide receives it's namesake from. The purpose of this strategy for Paragon Farming is to blaze through as fast as possible. Ideally you will be Tempest Rushing everywhere and minimize the time you are not channeling the ability. Tempest Rush initially costs 15 Spirit to start the spell, and an additional 10 Spirit per second of channeling the spell modified by your Attack Speed. If you have a 1.00 Attack Speed you will drain 10 Spirit during the channel, if you have 1.5 Attack Speed you will drain 15 Spirit per second and so on. Achieving a constant Tempest Rush will require a varying amount of base Spirit Regeneration dependent on a player's gear choice.
-Sweeping Wind: Inner Storm - This is going to be your main source of damage on normal Mobs. The choice of Glyph will vary depending on your gear choice and preferences. When starting out Inner storm will give you the Spirit Regeneration you need to sustain Tempest Rush. The other two popular options for Glyphs are Fire Storm and Cyclone.
Sweeping Winds functions by looking at your damage when it is cast and using that damage the entire duration of the spell. This effect is commonly called a Damage Snapshot [click the link for more detailed information]. This would be the reason why the temporary damage buffs are so significant in the build as it focuses on abusing them as they for all intensive purposes become permanent as long as you continue the initial cast of Sweeping Winds by refreshing it.
If you refresh Sweeping Winds when it is at 3 stacks, it will continue the initial cast of the skill which retains that high Damage Snapshot we were talking about. You can do this by either hitting a Mob or Object with Tempest Rush or Casting your Sweeping Winds Spell again. Recasting Sweeping Winds while it is active treats function just as if you've hit a mob with a normal [non-crit] attack so you can keep the high Damage Snapshot rolling. Inna's Granduer 4 piece will make keeping this Skill up a breeze [yea thats right, a pun just happened, deal with it].
-Deadly Reach: Foresight - You'll find that using this build means that actually making use of a Spirit Generator is few and far between, however you will still need one. Deadly Reach: Foresight accomplishes filling the role of a Spirit Generator and a temporary Damage Buff which makes it a no-brainer.
-Blinding Flash: Faith in the Light - This ability can serve as a stopgap on an Elite pack if your Seven-Sided Strike is down. Just be careful against Reflect Damage! This ability also provides an invaluable 30% temporary Damage Buff.
-Seven-Sided Strike: Sustained Attack - Some packs have the ability to slow you down such as Reflect Damage, Illusion, and Shielding. In order to facilitate moving through content faster, Seven-Sided Strike is utilized to destroy Elite packs immediately with a press of a button. Seven-Sided Strike: Fulminating Onslaught is also a popular alternative. The Damage Snapshot works for this ability as well.
-Mantra of Conviction: Overawe - This will facilitate getting out the amount of damage you need to blaze a trail through mobs and kill Elite Packs in one Seven-Sided Strike. As your damage gets higher you may want to switch over to Mantra of Conviction: Submission as you will not need the assistance from the Glyph Overawe to kill Elite packs and this should assist in killing white mobs faster. Some folks with high damage actually swap to Mantra of Healing: Circular Breathing for spirit Regeneration and swap another Spirit Regeneration ability in favor of more damage or utility.
The Guardian's Path will be the best source of Spirit Regeneration you can get. Keep in mind this boosts your Spirit Regeneration per second effects [which makes it so good] as well as Spirit gained from Spirit Generators. It will assist in keeping you moving and helping you get moving again if you manage your Spirit poorly and have to use Deadly Reach to generate Spirit. This is really the only Passive Ability considered a must have. Depending on your tastes the other Passive Abilities are yours to choose. If you find yourself not doing enough damage to mobs and having to pass through them over and over, consider dropping Fleet Footed for another Passive. If you need more defenses pick up a defensive Passive. Need more Spirit Regeneration, then swap in a Spirit generating Passive. NOTE: For the purposes of this guide stick to the given build and tweak it later when you understand it more.
You'll likely need the Templar who will be Skilled for his bonus to Spirit Generation and Spirit Regeneration as he is a walking version of your Guardian's Path Passive Ability. I consider my gear good and I still use him and would not get any other spirit on gear to trade him for any other follower.
-HOW TO USE THE BUILD ABOVE? First and foremost, cast Mantra of Conviction: Overawe and keep it active at all times [Please remember that Mantra of Conviction: Overawe is a de-buff on the enemy and not a buff to yourself].
Buff your damage with Deadly Reach: Foresight, Blinding Flash: Faith in the Light, and then immediately cast Sweeping Winds: Inner Storm while the buffs are active in order to take advantage of the Damage Snapshot. Next, get Sweeping winds to 3 stacks by punching more with Deadly Reach [gets it up faster due to the Proc Co-efficient]. Finally, proceed to channel Tempest Rush: Tailwind running like a lunatic through the zones killing mobs and refreshing Sweeping Winds.
Try to remember to stop where appropriate to Deadly Reach: Foresight rebuff if needed which you can do on the Elite Packs between Seven-Sided Strike cool downs, Demonic Tremors or fat dudes [which normally I just run through as they are a waste of time].
Refrain from stopping to pick up items that you know are not worth picking up [varies from person to person as everyone has their view on what is valuable. I only stop for Legendaries, some 63 Weapons, and Jewlery]. You stop channeling Tempest Rush and you'll have to spend the initial amount of spirit to restart it [and if you pick up too many things you WILL run out of spirit]. This build is about efficient farming of Legendaries and Experience. If you love to pick up everything that drops on the floor, stop it right now because its a waste of precious time.
-FIGHTING ELITE PACKS: Continue to abuse the Damage Snapshot concept here. Blinding Flash: Faith in the Light and then immediately Seven-Sided Strike the Elites FAST, before they use abilities. You will get used to the right spots to cast it in to ONLY hit the Elites if other mobs are present on screen. Seven-Sided Strikes AI/coding tries to keep it close to where its cast, experiment and practice, you'll find the sweet spots to only hit the pack. If this is too hard you may clear things around it first. If Seven-Sided Strike is down just Blinding Flash, cast your Mantra and punch punch punch - BUT NOT AGAINST REFLECT DAMAGE. If your Seven-Sided Strike is down take these out one by one so you don't blow yourself up. The quicker you get these Elites down the less you'll have to contend with the time sinks that are Illusion, Reflect Damage, and Shielding. You will hit multiple Reflect Damage packs in a row sometimes which is the only real speed bumps you'll hit. Thankfully this is in the process of being nerfed.
-WHY SEVEN-SIDED STRIKE IS IMPORTANT: It stops Elites with Reflect Damage from making you kill yourself by making you immune to all damage for the duration of the spell. More importantly kills Elite packs instantly enabling you to run around Tempest Rushing more. Some people use Flash of Light: Blazing Wrath instead for the 15% damage and will argue that is better than Seven-Sided Strike, however I disagree with this view. Deadly Reach: Foresight, Blinding Flash: Faith in the Light, and Mantra of Conviction: Overawe are all the damage you need. Some people also use Dashing Strike: Way of the Falling Star instead which I disagree with due to Spirit expense, delay of movement also enabling it to not last the full duration and by my practice does not seem to stack with Tempest Rush or be worth losing Seven-Sided Strike.
-YOU DISAGREE WITH THE SKILL/PASSIVE/FOLLOWER SUGGESTIONS?: Then use another option that you find works for you. Your mileage may vary. I do not recommend changing anything until you completely understand what you are doing. Follow this guide to the letter if you're new to Tempest Rushing because that's what it was written for, to educate. When you actually know what basic requirements to aim for you'll learn that you can change things. Bottom line is do whatever you want if you know what you are doing.
-KEEP IN MIND: This build is for Paragon Farming on Monster Power 0 or 1 and NOT higher Monster Power levels or Uber Bosses. Dual Wield with Life Steal is more suited to higher Monster Power and Uber Bosses: http://us.battle.net...gSXk!UZa!acYcba
-THE MAIN GOAL IS THAT YOU WANT TO BE CHANNELING TEMPEST RUSH AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE: Your Spirit Regeneration should be the very close or the same as your Attack Swing Timer. Tempest Rush drains 10 Spirit per second at 1.00 Attack Speed and this changes based on your Attack Speed. Once again, the higher your attack speed the more Spirit is drained. So as an example for infinite Tempest Rush channeling for: 1.08 APS = 10.8 Spirit Regeneration [which is the normal 10 spirit needed per second modified by your attacks per second]. This is one of a few good reasons why 2-handed weapons are best for using Tempest Rush. Please note that IF YOU KNOW WHAT YOU ARE DOING you DO NOT have the EXACTLY match your Attack Speed with Spirit Regeneration. As long as you have enough Spirit not to run out and stop constantly to generate Spirit you will be fine.
Prior to Talents, Skills, Glyphs, and the Templar ability you should have MINIMUM of around 4.75 Spirit Regeneration [per second] from gear for the build I have given you. A nice Inna's Radiance and a Stone of Jordan will do this along with your Inna's Granduer 3 piece set with no issues. On a budget you can use a Madstone, Xephirian Amulet, or Hellcat Waistguard - but I do not recommend building this on that low a budget as 2 of those budget items stop you from getting Inna's Granduer 4 piece set. Feel free to go above this Spirit Regeneration suggestion and swap passives but I have found this particular build to be most effective without sacrificing DPS. The build listed is how I get my Spirit Regeneration to appropriate levels while having Mantra of Conviction: Overawe for max DPS.
Once again...don't stop to pick up gear that isn't worth IDing. You are wasting Spirit by having to restart the Tempest Rush channel and time picking up junk. That initial cast of Tempest Rush is 15 Spirit, so each time you stop to grab something and restart Tempest Rush you lose around 4 Spirit above your channeling 'budget'. The only time you should be stopping is to rebuff Deadly Reach: Foresight and Mantra of Conviction: Overawe, and cast Seven-Sided Strike. When you do that it is a good window to pick up more items.
-DO NOT GET ATTACK SPEED ON GEAR ASIDE FROM INNA'S PANTS. This is a common mistake. More Attack Speed means you need more Spirit to channel Tempest Rush and the Attack Speed does very little for your DPS or farm other than inflate your paper dummy and Bnet profile DPS and significantly reduce your Tempest Rush channel.
-DO NOT DUAL WIELD WHILE USING A TEMPEST RUSH BUILD: The higher the Attack Speed the harder it is to continuously channel Tempest Rush as Dual Wielding is allllll about the Attack Speed.
-IF YOU ARE BUILDING FOR TEMPEST RUSH, USE A SLOW 2-HANDED WEAPON: The go to weapon here is a Skorn.
-STONE OF JORDAN IS HIGHLY RECOMMENDED: This will give you the Spirit Regeneration you need as well as a couple of other great perks. The + x% to Elemental Damage is good for you as it actually adds a flat damage to your Physical attack [more on this later]. The bonus to Elite Damage will make it possible to kill these packs in one Seven-Sided Strike. The Monk Skill Bonus is just extra fun if you can afford one that helps out the build, but it is not required.
-WHAT MONK SKILL BONUS SHOULD I GET ON STONE OF JORDAN?: As stated, on a budget you can disregard the Monk Skill Bonus, but if you have the gold get Sweeping Winds as it is the best modifier for all monk cookie cutters with Sweeping Winds in the build at this time. Some prefer Tempest Rush Critical Hit Chance.
-HAVE INNA'S GRANDEUR 4 PIECE SET BONUS. Remember, never let Sweeping Winds fall as it loses time. You will not be able to keep it up at all times just by hitting objects with Tempest Rush or punching. If it is about to fall, recast Sweeping Winds to continue the initial cast as we discussed. Having Inna's Granduer 4 piece which reduces Sweeping Winds to 5 Spirit to cast helps tons to keep it active at all times. This method of maintaining the cast of Sweeping Winds eliminates downtime in 2 ways: 1)Every time it falls you have to rebuff yourself prior to casting it again to retain your damage buffs through the duration of the spell and 2)Less spirit expenditure and keeps a source of Spirit regeneration going if you use the Inner Storm Glyph.
-MAXIMIZE YOUR INITIAL WEAPON SWING DAMAGE. [Which does not mean your paper dummy/Bnet profile, or Stats screen DPS] Your weapon should be slow and hit like a truck. You want high Average Damage on a Ring and your Amulet, then on other gear prioritize in no strict order: % to Elemental Damage, Dexterity, Critical Hit Chance to a minimum of 33%, and last but not least Critical Hit Damage. Ideally, you want to run through mobs once at MP0 and minimally on MP1, not go through too many times. Your stat screen DPS is deceptive and meant as a guide for DPS not displaying the actual number or effective number for every build you are running. It's important to know the difference here. If you are just starting out with lower DPS do not expect things to die in one pass, but you will still farm rather quickly [note that there are times where you must debate turning around to kill that one mob, or moving on to the next giant pack of exp].
-DON'T BE A DANGEROUS DUDE LIKE ME: Get some health...around 35000 so you have elbow room and resists at like 400, increase this for MP1. You just want wiggle room just in case you do something stupid or string of bad Elites happens.
-YOU DON'T NEED LIFESTEAL ON A SKORN: Sure you can get one with life steal, but I am assuming you do not have 100+ Mil to throw around on one slot of gear when you can easily spend 5-10 Mil and hop on the Tempest Rush Train. The only thing it is going to help with is Reflect Damage Elites which will be nerfed into the ground soon. Get one with the highest Average DPS, 500+ Dex, and highest Critical Hit Damage that you can. Don't confuse my above statement about needing a life pool with the concept of having to get sustained survivability [a term used to describe Life Steal or Life on Hit]. Health globes are enough to sustain you and you should base your life accordingly. You do not need Life Steal or Life on Hit to sustain yourself. Buy potions if you really feel scared like a bunny. I am a bunny and I love potions. The only solid argument for Life Steal is Reflect Damage Elites.
-GET SOME BONUS TO YOUR PICK-UP RADIUS: Free gold that you would otherwise have to turn around for and making it easier to pick up Health Globes is awesome. You certainly don't need this, but I like free gold.
-FARM ON EITHER MP0 OR MP1 AS THAT'S WHAT THIS BUILD IS FOR: Up to you what EXP % gear you want to use or Magic find etc. I run on MP0 because I feel that works best and is the fastest for me.
-GEAR SWAPPING: Totally up to you if you want to do this, however I am not a fan of it [lazy, don't want to buy more stuff]. Remember the Damage Snapshot concept? It not only focuses on simply Damage, but other things as well. You can take advantage of this by Equipping gear that is advantageous to the snapshot and then swapping in gear with stats that will further increase your damage! See this well written guide I have linked a few times: http://www.reddit.co...i/monksnapshot.
You can get a Won Khim Lau with Spirit Regeneration and a socket and a shield with Tempest Rush Crit chance and survivability stats to gear-swap with your Skorn after you cast Sweeping Winds as an example. In this instance its best to use Sweeping Winds Cyclone so that everything is lightning damage [your Tempest Rush should also be Lightning damage now due to the Won Khim Lau Lightning damage Element Affix]. More on why Won Khim Lau is the weapon of choice to gear swap below.
Gear swapping is a viable option/playstyle, but one I do not exercise.
-PHYSICAL/BLACK WEAPONS AND SKILLS? WHAT MODIFIES THEM?: When referring to Physical damage, the community considers the terms Physical and Black synonymous. Some Weapons have no Elemental Damage Affix and are therefore Physical Weapons.
Some attack Abilities are also Physical as well and will say if they are not [Tempest Rush for example is by default a Physical Attack]. Physical attacks will be modified based on several factors. This happens in a VERY specific order:
1)Skills. If a Skill says that it deals X Poison damage, then it will deal Poison damage and not Physical damage no matter what. If not and the Skill is Physical then the game looks for...
2)Elemental Damage Affix on weapons which will then override your Physical attack and everything else below. I am talking about this part of the weapon:
So a Fire Brand as an example will make your Tempest Rush Fire Damage. If there is no Affixed Elemental Damage to your weapon then...
3)...your Add % to [Element] Damage comes into play. This stat can come on your weapon and any other slot of gear. If you have Add % to Cold damage, grats your Physical attacks are now Cold attacks. If you have multiple Add % to [element] damage with different elements the highest % wins [which for Tempest Rush monks is Holy usually due to Inna's Favor].
Keep in mind this ability description is kind of wonky and doesn't increase the damage of your abilities based on the Element. It is just a flat damage increase all around to your Physical damage only [which mean Physical or Black weapons benefit the most from this stat].
4)If none of the above apply, your attack and by process of elimination your weapon as well is Physical or Black.
I feel that while not Tempest Rush specific, this belongs here as a lot of people have arguments over the Add % to [Element] Damage of a Stone of Jordan when the reality is that it does not matter.
So for the gear swapping aforementioned the Won Khim Lau as an example will make your Physical attacks and by proxy Tempest Rush deal Lightning damage. Which will be increased by the special ability of the Won Khim Lau which states Lightning Skills Deal x% more damage [not to be confused with Add % to Lightning Damage].
Thank you for taking the time to read this as well as the linked material. Focus on the above and you will be Tempest Rushing effectively. Depending on Gear, Shrines, and luck of the draw you should get 50 million EXP/h on a terrible run ranging to 80 million EXP/h on an awesome run [Ruby and Hellfire Ring, No Leorics]. This is the estimate on a traditional Alkaizer Run. Enjoy your faster and more efficient farming sessions. If you have any questions please include your battle tag or ID as well as your region as the information is necessary to answer most questions.
A footnote: My build will constantly change as I fiddle with stuff.
Edited by Molster, 22 January 2013 - 05:19 AM.