HC Zon Questions

Crudesash68

Diabloii.Net Member
HC Zon Questions

Well, to start, I am not all that familiar with Amazons, having only played one before, and not going too far with her.

I started a HC Zon with the intention of being a PJ/LF Javazon. Then, after realizing that I might need to do some damage other than poison/Lightning, I looked at the Spear skills, and found them not to my liking; I really do not want any part of melee in Hell.

So, I started thinking about making a hybrid, using Freezing Arrow to compliment LF, instead of PJ. No real dilemma here, except that I lose style points for not being a pure Javazon.

However, I am starting to wonder...am I going the right way? So, I was hoping some Zon vets could help me out.

My character will more than likely not rerun any areas, but I am not deadset against it, especially if I actually acheive Guardian. Full clears, but low player settings-I do this for survivability, speed, and fewer item drops; it is more challenging and less cluttered, at least to me.

Here is my skill point distribution, and goals, where applicable, and the area I am most concerned with. I am at level 27, getting ready to start Act 3.

Bow Skills
1 Cold Arrow (may boost to ~5 for synergies)
1 Ice arrow
0 Freezing Arrow (will max out)

No other Bow Skills

Javelin/Spear Skills
1 Jab
1 Power Strike
1 Poison Javelin
1 Lightning Bolt
1 Plague Javelin
0 Lightning Fury (will max out)

No other Javelin/Spear Skills

Passive Skills
1 Inner Sight
1 Slow Missiles
1 Decoy (may pump to ~5 for synergies)
0 Valk (will raise to hit lvl 17 for equipment bonuses)
3 Dodge (will pump to hit 50%)
3 Avoid (will pump to hit 50%)
3 Evade (will pump to hit 50%)
3 Critical Strike (will pump to hit 50%)
1 Penetrate
0 Pierce (will pump to hit 50%, more if points allow)

So, my current expected final stats at level 82 (94 skill points) would be:
20 FA
20 LF
11 Valkyrie*
5 D/A/E
4 Decoy
5 CA
5 Pierce
5 CS
1 in the other prereqs/skills

The 11 in Valk assume two important factors; one, that I will have at least +2 to skills among my gear, which I think is attainable, even untwinked, and the use of the "Harmony" runeword. I am currently using the RWM mod, so that option is available to me. If I decide to not use the mod (be real, except for Harmony, Edge, Spiirit, and the Polearm word, sorry, name escapes me, the words are just too hard to create), I will need to boost Valk more, likely at the cost of 1 point per skill in the other passives, or perhaps CA.

So, any imput is appreciated; My assumption is that LF will own most of the monsters on its own until Hell, and I start finding LI monsters. My merc choice is still in debate as well, but I am leaning towards might. If I went with HF, would that make FA superflous, and beg using PJ instead?

Thanks in advance for all input/ advice.

Steve
 

frosty

Diabloii.Net Member
I would suggest PJ/LF. My LF/PJ zon hardly died throughout the game and I was playing her at p8 and rather recklessly.

A maxed out and synergised PJ will take care of any non-Poison Immunes at low players settings (p1-p3). The only true worry will be gloams. So your assumption is correct. :)

If you go the bow route, I would prefer Melody over Harmony. Melody in a proper bow, will give +6 to bow skills and that will be a significant boost to Freezing arrow. Also note that finding some sources of cold duration will increase the freezing duration in hell.

And regardless of the merc you choose, make insight. The meditation aura will help both Freezing arrow and Lightning fury. Also take note that the freezing arrow is bugged with some AR problem, so some solid points in penetrate may be required. But if you go FA, use might or defiance.
 

killian27

Diabloii.Net Member
Id suggest looking at a damage calculator to see if sharing 20 points between cold arrow and freezing arrow could give you a good bit of damage at lower mana cost... fa is mana costly and its hard to leech it back without strafe... just a thought to ponder.

I think i'd shoot for ~40% in DOE

I'd leave decoy at 1, and probably use buriza to skip points in pierce. Leaving more points for your valk, who is much better than your merc... who should be a might merc imo.

K
 

AlterEgo

Diabloii.Net Member
frosty said:
And regardless of the merc you choose, make insight. The meditation aura will help both Freezing arrow and Lightning fury.
I doubt that Crudesash uses the Rune Word Mod ;)

I've never played a PJ/LF zon, so really can't be much real help. :scared:
 

frosty

Diabloii.Net Member
Crudesash68 said:
The 11 in Valk assume two important factors; one, that I will have at least +2 to skills among my gear, which I think is attainable, even untwinked, and the use of the "Harmony" runeword. I am currently using the RWM mod, so that option is available to me. If I decide to not use the mod (be real, except for Harmony, Edge, Spiirit, and the Polearm word, sorry, name escapes me, the words are just too hard to create), I will need to boost Valk more, likely at the cost of 1 point per skill in the other passives, or perhaps CA.


Steve
I just have to point this out. :p
 

Crudesash68

Diabloii.Net Member
Yes, I am actually trying out the RWM mod...it does feel somewhat cheesy, though.

I can't use a Buriza unless something happens that hasn't ever happened to me; finding it. I am playing the zon untwinked HC, so unless I am uber-lucky, I doubt I'll see that.

So PJ is that strong, eh? Maybe I will go straight Jav's then. It will mean I wasted 2 skill points, but that isn't an overly big deal.

If I do go FA, I will have to compare the stats between Harmony/Melody; Harmony has some really nice mods, but I will take a look. I did plan on hanging onto a few cold damage skillers, no matter what route.

Thanks everyone!

Steve
 

whomhead

Diabloii.Net Member
Good luck finding Bow/CB skillers, let alone cold damage ones. They're quite rare.

What Frosty was referring to is getting charms with cold damage on them. In Hell, every source of cold damage adds an extra quarter second of frozen monsters. So, after busting out my calculator, 8 small charms with cold damage (amount doesn't matter) will freeze monsters for 2 seconds in hell. Pretty nice! Note that if you get a Freezing Small Charm of Winter (good luck!) this counts as two sources of damage and that charm alone will freeze monsters for a half second. If you decide to go without FA, then ignore all this.

Regarding your original question, either FA/LF or PJ/LF should be a viable combo. The former will kill more slowly but is safer. Melody in a +3 B/CB bow will really help your Cold Damage. Although, without significant synergies in it, it wont do too much damage. My advice would be to chose which skill you want to be your primary killer, and then invest into synergizing that skill. If it were me, I'd go with LF over FA because a high level of Charged Strike is a viable killer in its own right - especially against bosses if you do end up doing those runs. To get the points for a synergy you could probably afford to put fewer points in Dodge/Avoid/Evade. Their great skills, but your goal is to not get hit anyway. The only really important one is the one that lets you dodge arrows since everything else should occupied by your merc and Valkyrie.
 

Colorless Green

Diabloii.Net Member
While I have no experience with the runeword mod, I did take an untwinked FA/LF zon to matriarch (not the same thing as guardian by a long shot, but still) and I found it to be about a million times easier than I expected. By *far* the easiest untwinked build I've done so far.

Skill distribution was:
20 FA
20 CA
20 LF
12 Valk
5-7 Pierce
1 pre-reqs

My basic strategy involved freezing anything non-CI with FA, then either LF'ing them to death if they were a large (>8 usually) group or CI, or switching back and forth between FA and normal arrows depending on how my mana was looking. Incidentally, if you use FA, save *everything* you can find with cold damage on it to increase the freeze length.

In that 3/4ths or so of the monsters in hell were immobile until they died, and the remaining ones were rapidly electrocuted with a few LF's while looking at a decoy or a valk, I could see this build going to guardian fairly easily.
 

Crudesash68

Diabloii.Net Member
Thanks guys. I actually meant cold damage charms, as opposed to skillers. I already have a few, and will just hang on to them.

Ischade, I think my strategy will be similar; freeze than jolt. I have decided to go with FA for practical reasons; should I find a really great bow, I would be able to use it if I went with FA over PJ, and since this is HC untwinked, I will need to take advantage of all situations.

Thanks again; I will post updates when they get juicy!

Steve
 
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