With Season 2 now in the rearview mirror it is time to look ahead to Patch 2.2, Season 3, and what is in store for the Wizard master race. The new Season is just a few days away. Lots and lots are changing with the patch. Even more will change with the start of the season and the new seasonal legendaries coming in to the mix. Wizard Changes Preview for Patch 2.2!
Among the more notable changes is the rework to Tal Rasha’s Elements. The set has gotten a redesign and is now substantially more powerful. The new set bonuses are as follows:
Tal Rasha’s Elements
Now has additional set pieces: Gloves, and Legs
Has been redesigned
Damaging enemies with Arcane, Cold, Fire or Lightning will cause a Meteor of the same damage type to fall from the sky. There is an 8 second cooldown for each damage type
Attacks increase your resistance to that element by 100% for 6 seconds
Attacks increase your damage by 175% 150% for 6 seconds. Arcane, Cold, Fire, and Lightning attacks each add one stack (maximum of 4). Adding a stack refreshes the duration
Tal Rasha’s Unwavering Glare (offhand)
Now rolls +20-25% Meteor damage as a fifth primary affix
These changes have made Tal Rasha’s a very viable high end Greater rift and T6 build. Coupled with the redesigned Bastion’s Will (The Focus and Restraint ring set) or the new Convention of Elements (example right), it has become a very fun, rotational Wizard build that is capable of crazy damage numbers. The popular build on the PTR uses the new Tal’s set, Bastion’s Will, and the new meteor boots, Nilfur’s Boast (example below).
This combination can make your Meteor – Star Pact or Meteor – Molten Impact hit like a truck. It’s definitely a lot of fun to play around with and capable of pushing really high into Greater rifts. I’ve seen Star Pact specifically crit for over a billion. There is also the possibility of combining the sets and just utilizing some of the affixes. I highly recommend playing with this at the beginning of the new season. I spent the most time using the 2 piece Tal’s set bonus with full Deslere’s Magnum Opus. The proc meteor’s off of Tal’s are a huge dps increase, and passive damage is alway’s a plus. Pair that with the bonuses from Delsere’s and you have a really interesting build. Without nearly optimized gear and a non-ancient Gesture of Orpheus I was able to clear grift 40 with ease. It’s also a nice visualization and a good change of pace from Firebird’s.
DMO or Delsere’s Magnum Opus has also been reworked slightly since it’s iteration in the Blizzcon demo. Here’s what that looks like:
Delsere’s Magnum Opus
Casting Arcane Orb, Energy Twister, Magic Missile or Shock Pulse reduces the cooldown of your Slow Time by 2 seconds
Enemies affected by your Slow Time take 2000% weapon damage every second
This damage type will be determined by your highest equipped +% Elemental Damage
Enemies affected by your Slow Time take 750% more damage from your Arcane Orb, Energy Twister, Magic Missile and Shock Pulse
Buffs, buffs, and more buffs. Though we still don’t know if it is enough to keep up with Firebird’s Finery or the new iteration of Tal’s, we do know that it is capable of t6 and 40+ grifts. The new version of Triumvirate (See example on left) helped get it up there as well. I found myself using it in tandem with the before mentioned set bonuses, using Magic Missile – Conflagurate to build up my stacks and and Frozen Orb supplemented with Slow Time to bomb packs of mobs. It was a hell of a lot of fun. With some min-maxing and good ancient rolls, it has potential for real power. Alternatively, combining the Revisited Firebird’s set in the mix also makes for some interesting options. The 6-piece remained, but they moved the 4-piece down to the 2-piece and put in a new affix that’s infinitely more interesting than the +500 Intelligence they canned. It’s bonuses now read:
Has been redesigned
When you die, a meteor falls from the sky and revives you. This effect has a 300 second cooldown
Your Fire Spells cause up to 3 enemies to explode, dealing 400% weapon damage as Fire to enemies within 10 yards
This now makes the Firebird’s cheat death attainable with other sets and builds, including Tal’s and DMO. That’s a huge plus for Greater rifts, because as Wizard’s already know, Unstable Anomaly usually needs a backup. Firebird’s has filled that role for the last two seasons and it is good that we can still obtain it while using the new sets. Options are never a bad thing, as long as they are good options.
Ranslor’s Folly and Crown of the Primus both seem to have cleared the PTR test phase and will make it to live as previously discussed.
Crown of the Primus
New Wizard Hat
New Legendary Bracers
Both of these items mesh well with Delsere’s Magnum Opus and got heavy use from me on the PTR. The bracers turn Energy Twister into a black hole-like spell capable of controlling an entire screen. Keep in mind that Energy Twister is spammable, folks. The helmet is also seeing good use in group play. Unlocking all of the runes of slow time effectively gives the party 15% more damage, reduces enemy damage by 25%, stuns everything entering and leaving the bubble, and slows projectiles and mobs. With DMO, and some CDR gear, Slow Time is always available for casting. This leads to a very safe battlefield for you and your cohorts. It’s really to see a support Wizard build be possible in the new season. We have been lacking group synergy for a long time. Maybe this will steer that in the right direction.
Obsidian Ring of the Zodiac
Your first hit with each cast of a resource-spending attack reduces the remaining cooldown of one of your skills by 1 second
Though not a Wizard specific item, the newly affixed Obsidian Ring of the Zodiac is also drool worthy with either of the newly designed sets. It is a front runner for BIS in some builds already. Once the early weeks of Season 3 flesh out, I think some really interesting item combinations will come into play. Items weren’t the only presents coming in the new patch. It’s also important to mention some quality of life changes they made as they do affect our game and efficiency. Gems and crafing materials now pick up all at the same time when you pick one up, gem upgrading now happens instantly instead of showing a progress bar, and regular potions have been removed from the game! Now you just have a potion button that is inevitably replaced after finding your first Legendary Potion. No more dodging annoying and useless potion stacks.
The road ahead is paved with lots of improvements as well as new loot and combinations for us, the master race, to play with. I’m excited to get into a live season and let these different items change my build and gameplay as I progress. I’m excited to see where I start, and eventually, where I end up. What are you looking forward to that’s coming in to Season 3? I don’t know how things will play out, or what build I want to play. I just know, for the first time since ROS shipped, it will not be Firebird’s… at least not at first.