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[Build] Crit Mass Arcane Destruction Wizard

Discussion in 'Wizard' started by Deced, Aug 24, 2012.

  1. Deced

    Deced IncGamers Member

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    Much ado has been made over the "Wicked Wind nerf" as if it somehow translated as a Wizard nerf. It doesn't. A lesser known fact is that 1.0.3's ninja buff of Wicked Wind's Proc Coefficient was in fact an Energy Twister Proc Coefficient buff. Among them, Storm Chaser was a 0.5, and post-1.0.4 still is. Storm Chaser builds were viable back in 1.0.3, along side Wicked Wind builds, they simply weren't as popular. They were, in my opinion, no less powerful. For reference 0.5 Proc Coefficient is double 1.0.3 Wicked Wind's, and quadruple 1.0.4 Wicked Wind's Proc Coefficients. In short, it was and still is absurdly huge.

    I've yet acquired no new gear for my Wizard since 1.0.4 went live, yet my Wizard is better than it used to be. The reason is 1.0.4 gave CM Wizard's the one thing they never had before: true burst damage in the form of Arcane Destruction rune on Archon.

    The build is:
    Energy Twisters - Storm Chaser
    Teleport - Wormhole
    Diamond Skin - Crystal Shell
    Frost Nova - Deep Freeze
    Archon - Arcane Destruction
    Energy Armor - Prismatic Armor

    Key Factors

    * Plays primarily like every other CM melee Wizard build. Run/Teleport up to monsters, drop as many Energy Twisters, Frost Novas and Diamond Skins as you can til everything's dead. The only difference is that you now spam Arcane Destruction as much as you can as well.

    * Buffs can be clicked off in this game. At the bottom of your screen, right click a buff, and it goes away. Works for Shrines and Energy Armor and whatever, most importantly it works for Archon. What this means is you can turn on Archon, get the 1600% Weapon Damage AoE to nuke everything around you, then immediately click Archon mode off to resume your normal Crit Mass spamming. Archon in this build is not for the mode itself, purely for Arcane Destruction.

    * Why Storm Chaser, you have no Sig Spells to use the Wind Charges? Storm Chaser isn't here for its "effect". You are simply using it because for some unexplained reason, it has an absurd Proc Coefficient. In simple terms, it's the best Rune (for that matter spell at all, imo) at trigger Critical Mass at this point.

    * Lot of people are hesitant to even give non Wicked Wind a shot because they think the random travel paths of the tornadoes are deal breakers. I guess it might be for some people, but I'd wager a guess most people who came at it with an open mind and give normal Energy Twisters are real shot with the gear to support it will find this to be no less effective than stationary Wicked Wind. Remember that Wicked Wind tornadoes do less damage per hit than other runes, and that Storm Chaser tornadoes travel slow and can still hit all but the smallest hit box monsters multiple times. With high crit, and decent AP on Crit, it's quite easy for Storm Chaser to pay for itself even when fighting a single monster.

    Skill Variations

    Teleport - You can use whatever rune you'd like. I prefer Wormhole for mobility, though others are just as viable. Safe Passage or Fracture are decent defensively, but with a second nerf in monster damage having occurred in Inferno by now, many players are probably past the point of needing more defense. Alternatively, with Paragon levels, skipping white trash monsters isn't necessarily the most efficient playstyle anymore, and you can just drop the spell outright if you care to. There's no real need for Teleport short of personal convenience and/or playstyle. Feel free to replace it with Explosion for more crit proc'ing, Magic Weapon for more damage, Slow Time Stretch Time for group play or whatever else might strike your fancy.

    Deep Freeze on Frost Nova - Was never a fan of it for 1.0.3 play because champ/rares short of Horde don't come in groups big enough to use Deep Freeze reliably and I just skipped trash monsters with Teleport usually. I'd find most trash monsters around packs died long before the champ/rares did, leaving me with not enough monsters to trigger Deep Freeze, not enough burst damage to kill champ/rares in the initial 12 seconds of the effect. 1.0.4 means killing trash is actually valuable, and Arcane Destruction gives more than enough burst damage for me to feel that the 12 second 15% crit boost is DEFINITELY the way to go. I find it not terribly difficult to keep Deep Freeze's crit bonus active nearly full time these days. Your mileage may vary. Feel free to use Bone Chill or Coldsnap if that's your preference. I highly recommend going out of your way to try getting comfortable full timing Deep Freeze though. It feels grossly powerful with this build.

    Obviously if your gear is such that Force Armor is more effective than Prismatic, go for it.

    Only passive that is obviously untouchable is Critical Mass. You can change the other two however you'd like, but I find Evocation and Cold Blooded the most useful. Glass Cannon and Blur are feasibly options depending on your gear level and what you're after.

    Gear Priorities

    This is my personal preference. Feel free to prioritize damage over defense if you so choose, not big deal.

    Overall, in order of most to least important: Critical Hit Chance => AP on Critical (to a certain point) => LoH (to a certain point) => Attack Speed => All Reist/Armor => Intelligence => Vitality => Critical Hit Damage => Average Damage

    Movement Speed and Socket being however valuable you consider them. I rate them high for efficiency, but they're neither technically necessary for the build itself to work.

    How much Life on Hit you want is largely dependent on how much defensive stats you have. I find 400-800 far more than enough to survive exceptionally well in Act3 Inferno. Which is simple enough to get on your weapon or amulet alone. Life Steal I also find nice, but it's only available on your weapon, and not terribly necessary. If you've crazy gear and can rock 90k+ DPS unbuffed on Wizard, a little Life Steal on your weapon can outright replace any LoH if you so chose. In fact, I've encountered Wizards with enough DPS they survive on health globe drops alone, because champ/rares can't do enough damage before they get blown up. LoH is the easiest and most obvious means of survival though.

    Ap on Crit is absolutely necessary for this build, for obvious reasons. You can find it on Wands, Sources, Wizard Hats. Depending on your Crit Hit Rate, you need more or less. If you're over +30 Crit Rate on gear and can maintain a decent uptime on Deep Freeze, I find 12-15 Ap on Crit sufficient. If you're lower than that, I'd suggest 16-20ish AP on crit. Your mileage may vary, there's no magic numbers here, you'll simply have to experiment to find out what'll work for you. Remember that if you want it on your weapon, you're stuck with Wands; if you want it on head, they only show up on Wiz only Hats, which are capped at ilvl62. You'll not see 6 Crit head w/ AP on Crit. You'll have to settle for lower values of crit rate on your head slot in that case. (Except maybe the new Storm Crow, haven't seen it spawn 6 crit yet, but that doesn't necessarily mean it can't)

    Individual gear piece priority:
    Head : AP on Crit (if necessary), Socket (if desired), Critical Hit Rate, All Resist/Armor, Intelligence, Vit. Remember that head is one of two slots that can spawn double stack Intelligence. Storm Crow w/ Crit, Andariel's w/ the ability to stomach looking ugly as sin, or Mempo of Twilight w/ Critical Hit Rate are all high end Legendaries to look out for, budget permitting.

    Body : All resist/armor, Intelligence, Vit. Pretty standard. Obviously you want sockets to up the values. Tal Rasha's Relentless Pursuit w/ All Resist spawn is obviously the best possible choice here, if you can afford it. Zunimassa's Marrow automatically spawns all the desired stats, so it's a good choice to look at, especially considering other pieces in the set are nice and the first two set bonuses are Wiz friendly.

    Shoulders : All resist/armor, Intelligence, Vit.

    Gloves: Critical Hit Rate, Attack Speed, Intelligence, All Resist/Armor, Vitality, Critical Hit Damage. Remember that gloves is the other slot that can spawn double stack Intelligence.

    Bracers: Lacuni Prowlers w/ Critical Hit Rate is the ultimate goal. It has enough random properties to also come with Intelligence and All Resist if you want to pull out your credit card as well, but just a pair w/ high Crit Rate alone makes this a must-have goal item. Attack Speed, 12 Movement, and Critical Rate on bracers is about as good as you can do. Failing that, focus on a rare with: Critical Hit Chance, All Resist/Armor, Intelligence, Vitality.

    Waist : All resist/Armor, Intelligence, Vitality. The Witching Hour w/ All resist is of particular value and probably the ultimate goal here. Tal Rasha's w/ All Resist is also one to look after.

    Pants : All resist/Armor, Intelligence, Vitality. Obviously you want sockets to up the values. Blackthorne's Jousting Mail can be interesting if you need LoH, or you find a good roll of random properties. If you're DPS oriented and can find an Int rolled pair, Inna's Temperance is an unconventional, but reasonable possibility.

    Feet: Movement Speed, All Resist/Armor, Intelligence, Vitality. Old or new Zunimassa's are worth considering.

    Amulet: Critical Hit Rate, LoH (if necessary), Attack Speed, Intelligence, All Resist, Vitality, Critical Hit Damage.

    Rings : Critical Hit Rate, Attack Speed, Intelligence, All Resist, Vitality, Critical Hit Damage. If you use Zunimassa's Feet (old or new) consider pairing the ring if budget permits.

    Source: Critical rate, AP on Crit (if necessary), high Avg Dmg, Intelligence, Vitality. Chantodo's would be the ultimate prize.

    Weapon: LoH and Ap on Crit as necessary, then just whatever maximizes damage. Fast weapons preferred.

    Enjoy your [strike]Carpal Tunnel[/strike] Critical Mass Arcane Destruction Wizard.
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2012
  2. Kurki

    Kurki IncGamers Member

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    I'm wondering in practice, how well does crit mass work to reduce the Archon cooldown? In other words, with what frequency is the Arcane Destruction effect available?
     
  3. beltt

    beltt IncGamers Member

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    WOW.... This is really nice... Refreshes really fast. I tried it with Archone... Refreshed really fast... Gonna try with Chain reaction...
    Gonna get nerfed........

    Regards Beltt
     
  4. beltt

    beltt IncGamers Member

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    Yep.... Gonna get nerfed... With deep freeze its just insane.....

    Regards Beltt
     
  5. kestegs

    kestegs D3 Monk Moderator

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    Having to click the icon to disable archon seems kinda rough, but I may try this out still.

    Good write up though, great read!
     
  6. beltt

    beltt IncGamers Member

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    The Archone part i kinda annoying... Chain Reaction is much easier to control... But 1600% Dan is Brutal:)

    Regards Beltt
     
  7. Deced

    Deced IncGamers Member

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    @Kukri: Depends on crit rate, number of monsters, size of monsters, and your attack speed. On champs, I was getting Arcane Destruction off roughly every 4-8 seconds.
    @beltt: Wouldn't be surprised if it did.
    @kestegs: It is irritating. Keeps you busy though.
     
  8. Kurki

    Kurki IncGamers Member

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    :worship:
    That's incredible. I wonder if Blizzard considered someone doing this when they made their changes? If not, I fear a nerf bat coming, as many people with crit gear will probably adopt this technique.


     
  9. Ith

    Ith IncGamers Member

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    They only nerfed Wicked Wind because it was stationary. This is random with some chances involved and therefore won't be nerfed.
     
  10. magicrectangle

    magicrectangle IncGamers Member

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    They're not going to nerf arcane destruction, why would they? They might nerf storm chaser though. Arcane destruction is nice in a burst sense of getting a lot of damage at once, but the sustained DPS of arcane destruction spam is about half that of chain reaction spam. Chain reaction is 291% weapon damage on a 6 second cooldown. Arcane destruction is 1600 weapon damage on a 60 second cooldown. Now there's always a little time lost between the time chain reaction cools down and the time you activate it, but there's also time lost clicking off archon, so assuming 10 times as many chain reactions under CM conditions isn't unreasonable. That gives chain reaction 82% more sustained DPS than arcane destruction - and it doesn't mess with your spam on other abilities by sticking you in archon form for a moment.

    I can see wizards who aren't as addicted to wormhole as I am using arcane destruction and chain reaction, but I can't see much benefit to using arcane destruction instead of chain reaction.


     
  11. Eric Xanthu

    Eric Xanthu IncGamers Member

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    That is the most rational wishful thinking I've seen on the subject so far.



     
  12. kestegs

    kestegs D3 Monk Moderator

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    Finally tried this. I was laughing pretty hard after I one shotted a stinger champ pack. Was seeing crits over 1 million, which was fun. I don't like the style though, and I don't think it's much faster than using teleport, and far less safe for sure.

    Cool idea though!
     
  13. Ith

    Ith IncGamers Member

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    You'd think they'd release a patch without looking at the coefficients of other runes on the same skill?


     
  14. RazeBarb

    RazeBarb IncGamers Member

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    I've got 33,5 % Crit unbuffed. Think that's enough for this build?
    Might try it out today.
     
  15. Eric Xanthu

    Eric Xanthu IncGamers Member

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    Can't tell if serious...



     
  16. Deced

    Deced IncGamers Member

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    More or less cause of this:

    The difference between acceleration v speed. I'm not gonna pretend it's typical to one shot champ packs, nor will I pretend Arcane Destruction is always better (it's probably not against stuff like Azmodean or group play champs), but many if not most champ packs in Act3 Inferno have approximately 1.2-1.5 million HP. And when fights last between one to three Arcane Destructions and 7-12 seconds, I find the idea you'd regularly get 10x as many chain reactions off to be inflated. In my experience, fights don't typically last long enough Chain Reaction has enough time to catch up.

    Regardless, it's another option for people to play if they're so inclined. And as you said, there's no particular reason you couldn't use both.

    @RazeBarb: That's a bit low to play with Archon, I would suggest higher, but it'll work. Don't underrate attack speed for crit mass proc'ing either.



     
  17. Karth

    Karth IncGamers Member

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    So who can I con into frapsing a session with this build + 1.04 Sever ?

    Or I guess just one or two uses of Arcane Destruction to see some funny crits...
     
  18. MrNajsman

    MrNajsman IncGamers Member

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    I tried switching Explosive Blast for Arcane Destruction but for me the cooldown was too long. I have 39 % crit chance and had to wait longer than 4-8 seconds before it was up. Switching out my main damage dealer in that way meant painfully slow farming.
    Edit 1: Ok maybe it wasnt painfully slow. But it felt slow and I didnt like it. /Edit 1.

    However I tried switching out teleport instead as others have suggested, I mainly use it for evading stuff and not travel speed, and I have to say it made for some fun moments :) A treasure goblin with almost half health died in one blast and it took big chunks of champions health.

    It was hard to test properly, I ran with a Witch Doctor with 70k dps who regularly critted over 100k, so we crushed most things in Act 2 anyway. Will have to try this some more, having the constant damage from explosive blast with a bonus 700k-dmg every 10th second is quite effective. Perhaps it isnt the most effective way compared to a teleporting champion-farmer. But much like the monks exploding palm it also adds some fun aspects.

    Be careful though, the loss of teleport can be quite noticeable in champion fights. Jailer+arcane? Bye bye.

    Edit 2: I tried this with Glas Cannon instead of Evocation, might switch back to get Arcane Destruction more often.
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2012
  19. Kaiadam

    Kaiadam IncGamers Member

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    Strangely, the better your gear, the worse this spec becomes.

    When your individual whirlwinds don't do that much damage, it takes more twisters to kill the same number of targets = more hits = faster reset. I often killed entire packs without having archon reset; it's basically impossible to get multiple archon resets in the same fight.

    Reflect damage mobs are the devil. I average around a mil per archon cast and 6 mil per crit (setting up a 10 mil crit is a fun exercise ...) so archon may as well be a suicide button around reflecters. Most of the time I take them down too, but generally not worth the 15-30 sec run back.

    Back to chain reaction for me at least.
     
  20. MrNajsman

    MrNajsman IncGamers Member

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    I found a drawback of having to manually switch it of. It seems there can only be 5-6 visible buff-icons. Valor, Energy armor, Storm Chaser, Diamond Skin and Deep Freeze are 5. The Archon icon sometimes get hidden behind Deep Freeze. Then that has to be clicked of first.
    In one game i had to click of Monk mantra, frenzy shrine and deep freeze before Archon became visible. That is not good.

    Also if youre a bit undergeared, which I am in act 3, going in archon mode can kill me in a heartbeat depending on the affixes. I guess its because Diamond skin is of and Im right on top of plague, desecrator etc.
     

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