Completing the suite, here’s our mega article evaluating the Diablo 3 Wizard skill changes datamined from a leaked pre-alpha version of Reaper of Souls. As with the others, bear in mind that the class changes are a work in progress and many tweaks and revisions are certain between now and release.
The wizard is the class I had the most anticipation for pre-D3, and yet have played the least, so I was very curious to look over these changes. And they’re pretty good, at least on a skill by skill basis. Arcane Orb is totally redone and one rune returns D2’s Frozen Orb. Wave of Force has basically turned into Nova, with no cooldown and most of the defensive properties changed. Magic Missile has one random rune to recreate D2’s Glacial Spike. There are many other skills changes, hardly any nerfs (and we all knew perma-Archon was on the chopping block), and a bunch of new passives and big changes to existing passives as well.
You can take in all the Wizardy goodness via the forum thread, or click through to read it all in this news post. Hit up forum threads with similar treatments for the other classes as well, if you missed them the last two days:
- Barbarian RoS datamined skill changes.
- Demon Hunter RoS datamined skill changes.
- Monk RoS datamined skill changes.
- Witch Doctor RoS datamined skill changes.
- Wizard RoS datamined skill changes.
Wizard Passive Skill Changes
Previously this skill filled 30 Arcane Power per health globe. This change seems a much more interesting mechanic; a Wizard could use a high cost skill in bursts that would otherwise be impossible due to resource cost.
When you suffer more than 15% of your Life in a single hit, the cooldowns on Mirror Image, Slow Time, and Teleport are reset.
When you use Mirror Image, Slow Time, or Teleport, your movement speed is increased by 30% for 3 seconds. (The second part about boosted movement speed is new for RoS.)
Totally redone skill to the point it might as well have a new name. The old version increased duration of Armor skills by 120 seconds and added health regen of 620 per second. This new version seems designed to create some different play options. Of zero use during a dangerous battle, but provides a nice buffer for the beginning of a fight. Perhaps well suited for a Wizard who likes to throw themselves into the midst of enemies, as it will blunt damage at the start, before the Wizard’s attacks and debuffs can create a control zone?
Previously this passive had an 8% chance to Stun the target, so the odds have been slightly improved, and it’s been made predictable. Since most lighting spells hit multiple enemies, this should be a powerful ability if used cleverly.
New Wizard Passive Skills
Dealing Arcane damage, grants you a shield that absorbs 826 damage for second.
This is the renamed Temporal Flux. That passive caused enemies to be slowed 60% for 3 second when damaged by Arcane. The new one joins a lot of other “temporarl shield” type Wizard abilities.
Slightly OT, but remember when Blizzard included the names of prominent fansite people in their games as shout outs and thank yous to the community? Like… as mercenaries? Come RoS I will no longer even be able to pretend they named a lame Wizard Passive after me. 🙁 At least my fellow Iron Wolf, Scorch, has a new rune effect in Arcane Orb to carry on the pretense.
Standing still for 2 seconds increases the following attributes:
* Armor: 20%
* All Resistances: 20%
* Damage: 10%
The tooltip doesn’t say how long the buffs last, but they’re pretty good bonuses. Presumably the 2 second timer would tick while you were casting spells, so it’s not a tough one to trigger.
You deal 20% additional damage to enemies within 15 yards.
Where was this when the CM/lock down build was still functional, will say every Wizard in RoS.
Damaging enemies with Arcane, Cold, Fire or Lightning will cause them to take 5% more damage from all sources for 5 seconds. Each different damage type applies a stack, stacking up to 4 times. Elemental damage from weapons contributes to Elemental Exposure.
I should applaud this one, since it’s almost exactly like what I asked for in the New RoS Wizard Skills thread, while remembering how much I enjoyed the tri-tree Wizard builds from D2X (before synergies ended their viability). I can’t see it really working in D3 though, not with just six skill slots. Mostly this’ll be used by players who have 2 different elements on their main skills, plus a third element on their weapon.
Wizard Active Skill Changes
- Conflagration: Missiles pierce through enemies and cause them to burn for 30% weapon damage as Fire over 3 seconds. (Formerly Penetrating Blast, which granted a piercing effect.)
- Glacial Spike: Cast out a shard of ice that explodes on impact, causing enemies within 5 yards to take 88% weapon damage as Cold and be frozen for 1 second. Enemies cannot be frozen by Glacial Spike more than once every 5 seconds. (Formerly Attunement, which gained the Wizard 4 AP per target hit.)
Nice random skill rune there, bringing back another popular Diablo 2 skill, Glacial Spike. Though nerfed a bit with the 5s cooldown (warm up?) between uses.
- Flame Blades: Each enemy hit increases the damage of your Fire spells by 1% for 5 seconds. (Formerly called Deep Cuts which added 45% weapon damage over 3 seconds.)
- Ice Blades: Chilled enemies have a 10% chance to be Frozen and Frozen enemies have a 10% increased chance to be critically hit by Spectral Blade. (Previously Impactful Blades, and it slowed enemies by 80% for 1 second.)
- Barrier Blades: With each cast, gain a protective shield for 1 second that absorbs 826 damage. (Previously Healing Blades, and it healed 5% of damage done. Like all the other skills with Life Steal, it’s getting gutted in RoS.)
A lot of substantial tweaks to the rune effects, but nothing to the base skill’s function. I liked using this one in the early days of D3, and it was awesome in the D3 beta, but it’s way down the list on most used Wizard skills, and even then the most popular is Healing Blades for the life steal… which is gone in RoS. Thus I don’t see enough improvements or changes here that this one is likely to be much-used in RoS… barring other changes to gear or Wizard build options.
Ray of Frost (ray-of-frost)
Project a beam of frozen ice that blasts enemies within 5 yards of the first enemy hit for 280% weapon damage as Cold and Slows their movement by 60% for 4 seconds. (Added the 5 yard radius effect, allowing for more enemies to be affected.)
Cost: 16 Arcane Power
- Snow Blast: Enemies hit by Ray of Frost take 30% increased damage from Cold for 4 seconds. (Formerly increased damage up to 364% when focused on the same target for 1.5s.)
- Sleet Storm: Create a swirling storm around you that grows up to a 22 yard radius, dealing 364% weapon damage as Cold to all enemies caught within it. (Added the 22y description.)
Arcane Orb (db)
Hurl an orb of pure energy that explodes on contact, dealing 200% weapon damage as Arcane to all enemies within 15 yards. (Previously 10 yards.)
Cost: 30 Arcane Power (Previously 35 cost.)
- Obliteration: Increase the speed of the orb and its damage to 260% weapon damage as Arcane, but reduce the area of effect to 8 yards. (Previously there was no change to projectile speed or radius of explosion.)
- Spark: Lob an electrified orb over enemies that zaps them for 200% weapon damage as Lightning and increases the damage of the next Lightning spell you cast by 1% for every enemy hit. (Previously Arcane Nova. The “lob” movement (presumably it moves like a grenade, like the WD’s Firebomb) and increased Lightning spell damage is all new.)