A couple of interesting Diablo 3 Wizard Strategy videos to view and learn from. The combatants are unrelated, but joined in their common feat of triumphing over a rank 38 Greater Rift with unconventional builds.

    The Glassiest of Glass Cannons

    The first shows off a wildly-glass cannon style build, with a Wizard packing a mighty 156,000 hit points and just 2.8 million toughness, with zero defensive stats on his gear. Despite that degree of fragility, he’s able to complete GR38, albeit by the slimmest of margins. There are a lot of deaths, naturally, most of them at the blades of Perdition, who spawns as the Rift Guardian and repeatedly one-shots our low-hps hero with his slashing teleport attack.

    Deaths and lucky spawn or not, it’s impressive to see a mostly successful GR38 clear from a character with less than half the toughness most people think necessary for T1. The wizard’s character profile can be seen here.

    Knockback Wave of Force Wizard

    The second GR38 Wizard is less fragile, but more non-standard in build. The wizard gears in Firebird’s Set and employs the usual “run around while meteors fall everywhere” play style, but he’s using Wave of Force: Impactful Wave for his main supplemental skill, to get the knockback effect synergizing with Strongarm Bracers and their legendary effect: “Enemies hit by knockbacks suffer 20–30% more damage for 5 seconds when they land.)

    Click through for video of the rift clear, plus more info on the build/strategy.

    Wanted to show you guys a run using an often overlooked skill. Wave of Force – Impactful Wave rune. “Repels projectiles back toward their shooter, knocks back nearby enemies and Slows them by 60% for 3 seconds.”

    Running with a standard Firebird setup, but it really feels like Wave of Force/Impactful Wave is an O.K. alternative to Hydra, Mirror Image, Meteor, etc. Those are all good choices, but I think that even though the damage from the WoF rune is Arcane, the benefits it provides can to a large extent make up for the loss of those other skills.

    You can with careful play keep a very high uptime of the +damage bonus effect from Strongarms, and in addition you also gain all that utility – Repels projectiles, knocks back monsters swarming you, slows them, gathers them up for you, clears precious space, you name it. Here you have a good defensive ability and a damage boost in one package.

    Should mention that it really feels like if you time the usage correctly, you can get the Firebird DoT ticking at a good rate as well. Looks like what might be happening is that when monsters are under the effect of the knockbacks from both of those skills, the effect from Strongarms might be applied multiplicatively. Not 100% sure on that one though.

    Anyways, enjoy the Diablo Soundtrack if nothing else. The first track is “Wilderness” from Diablo II, 2d is “Chains of Fate” from Diablo III.

    Obviously these still require some pretty good gear, even in softcore, but it’s nice to see fairly high level content being cleared by non-cookie cutter power builds.

    Both of these videos have been listed in the Media section for future reference.

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