As stated above currently it only matters for basic attacks. However non elemental Damage gain full benefit of the % damage affix so until blizzard fixes the you are further ahead using a weapon with non elemental damage.
A lot of things spreading out in this thread To avoid confusion and make a recap:
- elemental damage on weapons and increased elemental damage on gear are two completely different things. Elemental damage on weapons counts for the base damage ONLY which is the base damage used by skill multipliers and such.
- damage type on weapon counts only for standard attacks; all skills have an elemental type (even physical) which will override the elemental weapon damage type; thus rolling the damage type the same as your skills has basically no effect whatsoever.
- x% elemental damage is applied AFTER the skill damage calculation and thus counts the elemental damage on weapon (because it's counted before to determine the basic hit of the skill). Still, it raises the SKILLS DAMAGE, hence you won't see the elemental damage on your weapon increase because you have stacked a lot of elemental damage. they simply do two completely different things.
- worth remembering, atm elemental damage on weapon is bugged and is not counted by the "+x% damage" affix on weapons; this basically means that at the moment any "+ physical dmg" weapon with also a "+x% dmg" affix is simply superior than any other elemental weapon. Blizzard said this needs to be fixed, but we don't know when and if it will be a retroactive fix.
"A weapon damage type is only important if you don't use any skill while hitting and this almost never happens.""- damage type on weapon counts only for standard attacks; all skills have an elemental type (even physical) which will override the elemental weapon damage type; thus rolling the damage type the same as your skills has basically no effect whatsoever."
"As stated above currently it only matters for basic attacks."
Just wanted to pop in and point out that this is partly untrue To be fair, the difference can be easy to miss.
There is actually a difference between a Skill which inflicts "x% Weapon damage"and a skill which inflicts "x% Weapon damage as Physical". The former will inflict your weapon's damage type, be it "Black (physical)", "Fire", "Cold"... etc. The latter will indeed convert any damage you cause with that skill to Physical.
This is why using defaultMultishot, Impaleor Strafe with aColdweapon will apply a snare effect: because you are doing Weapon Damage with those skills (which is Cold in this example). Rapid Fire on the other hand is pretty clear in the type of damage it does - none of its Runes do damage based on the Weapon's.
(As a "the more you know" bit, there's another reason why all those shenanigans can be relevant: monster resistances. In vanilla D3 it wasn't all that noticeable, but many monsters had higher resistances than others.Skeletonstake much lessPhysicaldamage, while Belial'sSnakeservants have superior resistance toPoison. Due to the fact most top builds tend to revolve around dishing out 1 type of elemental damage, this means Multiplayer mode has yet another advantage: If you party your all-fire DH with an all-lightning Wizard and all-holy Crusader... your buddies can make up for the loss of damage you would incur from running into Fire-resistant mobs.)