Next step for my fireball/orb sorc?

TheGuardianXXXIII

Diabloii.Net Member
My fireball orb sorc is my first character since coming back to d2. I hadn't played since 1.09 days (maybe even 1.08 as i never played w/ synergies before). Everything she has is self-found running FAM only. I'm pretty proud of the progress i've made with her so far in the last 2-3 weeks, but now that i finally found Tal's ammy and completed tal's set, i don't know what my most bang for the buck next steps are to take her to the next level. I'm really enjoying crushing monsters on players1, but reading all these other posts about people running p7/p8 and whatnot has me thinking "well shit, i should be able to faceroll p3 at least, right??"

Her current gear:

Head: Tals w/ pTopaz
Neck: Tals
Chest: Tals (no socket)
Weapon: Tals (no socket)
Shield: 33% Spirit Monarch (3 attempts at 35 FCR, but still trying).
Belt: Tals
Ring1: SoJ (farmed the shit out of NM Andy for this!). Sometimes switch w/ a utility ring like Nature's Peace or Dwarf Star.
Ring2: 10 FCR Rare ring w/ good res all + high light res. Plan to change this if i can get the 35% FCR Spirit.
Boots: War Travs|Aldors|SSTreks depending on what i'm doing.
Charms: 1 fire skiller, Mix of resists, FHR, MF, and Life SC's depending on a few of the optional slots above.

She has the main BP's covered: 105% FCR, 86% FHR, max res all except poison which is like 40%. i don't run block so no blocking breakpoints.

Merc is running:
Vamp Gaze (Just got, so trying this over Tals to see which i like more).
Duriels (CBF is awesome). I have a shaft but it kind of sucks on merc
Eth CPA Insight (with a mediocre Medi roll). Getting the Eth CPA really boosted my merc over the GS he was using prior.


I really like Tal's full set and the fireball/orb build - and the only real replacement I can determine to that are the super high end items like Death's Fathom, Enigma or CoH, Arachs, Nightwing. Those are obviously going to take me a good while to farm... and i don't think breaking up full tal's is worth it unless you have most of those together. So in the meantime, what can i do between finding those GG items and my current full-tals setup?

Obvious things like socketing my weapon and armor and more skillers...(i'd love to find fire/cold facets - i've only found a lightning one so far). Besides facets, is there anything i could do for sockets to pump my damage? Maybe i should start trying to trade some of the other class skillers i've found for some fire skillers. Another thing within my reach is making a CtA for switch... but this will just boost my survivability which is already pretty good.

Anyway, just looking for some advice on some SP progress without access to items/economy of a bnet player.
 

LongingForDeath

Diabloii.Net Member
Other than more skillers and socketing your armor with fire/cold facets, you're pretty much set. I'm a huge fan of the full Tal's set, as it provides a perfect mix of +skills/damage, FCR, resistances, MF, mana and life that no other combination can. Any other gear combination lacks in at least one of these categories. Really, the only time I don't go full Tal's on a sorc is if I want to reach 200% FCR. But then that's a sorc that's optimized for kill speed and safety, but usually lacks in regard to MF.

Infinity on your merc would boost your kill speed quite a bit against anything that's not fire immune. With full Tal's and a CtA you don't even need Insight anymore, since you'll have enough mana and regeneration to not rely on the Meditation aura anymore.

In the end, though, it's a dual element sorc. They are not the fastest killers on higher player settings, since you're lacking in synergies. You rarely run into anything that you can't kill yourself, though.
 
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darkstarhub

Diabloii.Net Member
I am a huge fan of the FB/FO build. The first few I made over the years always followed the Tals set route, and they were very solid, and had great MF. This time around, and after a completely fresh start, I decided to go a different route. Part of the reason for that was finding a Nightwings fairly early on, even though I’m not using it now.

You have a very good start, especially with a SoJ. I used to run a Ravenfrost for the CBF in the other ring slot, but now I run dual SoJ’s since being able to Teleport away kinda nullifies Ravenfrost. Plus, extra mana, mana regen, and +1 skills from another SoJ helps much more, or other stats if needed from a rare. I am still trying to remember what I used in addition to Tals set the last time, but I know I socketed the helm/armor with a PTopaz, and the weapon with a Fire Resist/FHR Jewel. Hopefully you can find more fire/cold skillers along the way, as they obviously help.

This time around I have went with:
Shako (Ist, just because I have found a bunch of them)
CoH
Arachnid Mesh
Mara's
Magefist
War Travelers(48%)
SoJ X2
HoTo
Spirit
Switch: CTA/Spirit

Merc:
Andy's
Fortitude
Infinity

I used an Insight for awhile, but with the extra regen and mana from the Soj's and Magefist, I decided to make an Infinity and it helps alot more than I though it would. All my skillers are cold skills with a Gheeds and all the SC's are MF with the exception of one FHR/Fire Res to hit the 60% Breakpoint. Here is a screenshot of the LCS buffed with CTA.
Screenshot468.jpg
I've died twice in Pits2 in the last week, which sucks for me since I should really only be running in CS for XP since I am trying to get to 99. It sucks even more that I am not a fast runner at all. Those Archers hurt when they are cursed no matter how good your stats are. Dmg wise she is good, and I have very little trouble killing anything, except for the obvious unbreakable Cold/Fire Immunes. I wouldnt be to worried about facets just yet, as they will only be to min/max at a certain point once you get plenty of skillers.

Good luck and have fun.
 

jonnyphive

Diabloii.Net Member
One option is to farm the runes for Infinity, which will allow you to potentially put less points in Cold Mastery and more into Fireball synergies. Combined with the conviction aura, that will significantly increase the killing power of your Fireball (and Meteor if you go that route).

The added bonus here is that you will likely find/reroll more skillers by the time you find/cube the necessary runes in LK.
 

TheGuardianXXXIII

Diabloii.Net Member
Thanks for the input guys! It sounds like moving onto infinity is my next logical step. I still have a lonnng way to go before I have the runes for that, especially since I'm heavily considering an enigma first for a zerker barb and all the other builds it opens up. But it gives me a goal to work towards and this is single player so I have all the time in the world :D

I'm interested in the charm rerolling. How's that work? I'm assuming you don't automatically get a different skiller if you reroll a skiller, right? I did save crappy GC and SC from baal for rerolling but haven't looked into the details of that yet
 

jonnyphive

Diabloii.Net Member
Any magical item + 3 perfect gems in the cube rerolls the affixes entirely. If you want the 'of Vita' (+41-45 life) suffix then you need to use Baal (or maybe Nihl?) GCs to have a high enough ilvl. So if Baal drops a Grand Charm of Craftsmanship, you can keep rerolling it with pgems over and over again until you get something you like such as a skiller, possibly with a great suffix as well. I believe those are fairly accurately the basics - others feel free to correct or supplement that.
 

krischan

Europe Trade Moderator
Full Tal's is an excellent setup for a dual element sorc, so I would definitely keep it on her. I suggest to make her a MF character.

Gear:
- Full Tal's with MF socketing. The orb could have a jewel with resists and MF, I wouldn't put an Ist rune into it.
- 35% Spirit, Magefists. That will give you a total of 105% FCR, exactly hitting the 8 fpa breakpoint.
- Two Nagelrings.
- MF+resist boots or Wartravellers.
- Ali Baba and Rhyme in the weapon/shield switch. She won't need CtA, except you are on hardcore.
- Fire skillers, Gheed's, SCs with resists, MF, life, perhaps FHR if you are close to a FHR breakpoint.

Merc: Act 2 defensive, with Insight, eth Treachery and Andy's

Areas: Meph + Andariel at /p3 (get the merc killed while doing that, he would stir up too may monsters and spoil the moat trick), Ancient Tunnels + Pindle (with merc) at /p1 (or higher if you want her to level up further).

I don't think it's worth to go for 41+ life skillers exclusively, except you already have way more good GCs than you need. Just pick up one in a L77+ area (which is pretty much everywhere she's going to go to, except perhaps Catacombs/Andariel), so you have a chance on up to 40 life on it. Start rolling up a new one, as soon as you have produced something halfway useful.

I also suggest to craft caster amulets (from gambled amulets once she's L92 L93... save up your pamethyst+Ral pairs until then) and blood rings (high character level not needed) and gamble for rings, coronets and (as soon as her level is in the mid 90s) amulets.
 
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TheGuardianXXXIII

Diabloii.Net Member
Any magical item + 3 perfect gems in the cube rerolls the affixes entirely. If you want the 'of Vita' (+41-45 life) suffix then you need to use Baal (or maybe Nihl?) GCs to have a high enough ilvl. So if Baal drops a Grand Charm of Craftsmanship, you can keep rerolling it with pgems over and over again until you get something you like such as a skiller, possibly with a great suffix as well. I believe those are fairly accurately the basics - others feel free to correct or supplement that.
Thanks for the info. I also searched the forum for more info and found the complete charm guide, so that's also useful in knowing what affixes are available and what's considered "good" vs bad.

Full Tal's is an excellent setup for a dual element sorc, so I would definitely keep it on her. I suggest to make her a MF character.

Gear:
- Full Tal's with MF socketing. The orb could have a jewel with resists and MF, I wouldn't put an Ist rune into it.
- 35% Spirit, Magefists. That will give you a total of 105% FCR, exactly hitting the 8 fpa breakpoint.
- Two Nagelrings.
- MF+resist boots or Wartravellers.
- Ali Baba and Rhyme in the weapon/shield switch. She won't need CtA, except you are on hardcore.
- Fire skillers, Gheed's, SCs with resists, MF, life, perhaps FHR if you are close to a FHR breakpoint.

Merc: Act 2 defensive, with Insight, eth Treachery and Andy's

Areas: Meph + Andariel at /p3 (get the merc killed while doing that, he would stir up too may monsters and spoil the moat trick), Ancient Tunnels + Pindle (with merc) at /p1 (or higher if you want her to level up further).

I don't think it's worth to go for 41+ life skillers exclusively, except you already have way more good GCs than you need. Just pick up one in a L77+ area (which is pretty much everywhere she's going to go to, except perhaps Catacombs/Andariel), so you have a chance on up to 40 life on it. Start rolling up a new one, as soon as you have produced something halfway useful.

I also suggest to craft caster amulets (from gambled amulets once she's L92... save up your pamethyst+Ral pairs until then) and blood rings (high character level not needed) and gamble for rings, coronets and (as soon as her level is in the mid 90s) amulets.
Sounds good. This is mostly what i'm doing with her now, except i don't moat trick mephisto. I just burn him down with frozen orb since it pierces his resistances and feed my merc 1 red pot to keep him alive. Andy just gets a stream of 8 fpa fireballs to the face and dies instantly. Those were the only places he was dying but now that he's level 90 and has the eth CPA he survives just about everything except those GD frenzy death lords in A5. I get really bored running the same boss/area over and over so i usually do area/boss runs across all 5 acts. Maus -> Pits -> Andy -> AT (i find myself skipping these lately tho, kind of annoying) -> LK -> Meph -> CS + Diablo -> Glacial gold chest + boss -> WSK -> Baal. Right now i've got a great combination of maps, especially for Pits, Meph, Andy, and LK, so it's really enjoyable doing the full 5 acts runs. I've been doing them on P1 though since i 1-2 shot most mobs w/ fireball. When i'm bored of that stuff i do LK p8 runs. I'd love to make a run at high /playersx for XP grinding to level 95 at least. That's really where i'm looking for advice on pushing her further in power. It sounds like to really make that jump i need Insight and more skillers.

Thanks for the advice on the charms and crafting/gambling. I didn't know about the L92 part.
 

krischan

Europe Trade Moderator
Small correction to my previous posting: You will have to wait until L93 before crafting from gambled caster amulets. That will ensure that it has an item level of at least 90, so it always has a chance on getting the +2 bonuses to all skills of a class. I edited my posting accordingly.
 

darkstarhub

Diabloii.Net Member
One option is to farm the runes for Infinity, which will allow you to potentially put less points in Cold Mastery and more into Fireball synergies. Combined with the conviction aura, that will significantly increase the killing power of your Fireball (and Meteor if you go that route).
I have considered doing exactly this the next time I respec. Since Infinity lowers the Cold Resistance, Cold Mastery is overkill to a certain extent, and I really want to add Meteor into the mix because Meteor is just a fun skill. I’ve always went the route of not using Meteor for synergy because of the extra skill points it takes to get there, even though it is double the dmg bonus from Fire Mastery.
 

jonnyphive

Diabloii.Net Member
I have considered doing exactly this the next time I respec. Since Infinity lowers the Cold Resistance, Cold Mastery is overkill to a certain extent, and I really want to add Meteor into the mix because Meteor is just a fun skill. I’ve always went the route of not using Meteor for synergy because of the extra skill points it takes to get there, even though it is double the dmg bonus from Fire Mastery.
My thoughts exactly. Since I've stumbled across a pair of Ber runes the past few months, I'm now planning a dual-element Tal's sorc with minimal Cold Mastery investment. You lose out in performance against broken CI monsters, but that's an infrequent occurrence and even with just +skills you'll still knock their resistances down into the ~0 range either way.
 

krischan

Europe Trade Moderator
Regarding skills, I suggest to maximize fireball, meteor, fire mastery and frozen orb while one point goes into frozen armor, warmth, teleport and static field. The rest is spent in cold mastery. I wouldn't invest into another fireball/meteor synergy.

I think a dual element sorc can live rather well without having Infinity on the merc. Those few fire+cold immunes can be weakened with static field and then pushed against a wall with telekinesis (a teleport prereq, so you have a point in there) and the merc can deal with them while being in eternal hit recovery.
 

jonnyphive

Diabloii.Net Member
Regarding skills, I suggest to maximize fireball, meteor, fire mastery and frozen orb while one point goes into frozen armor, warmth, teleport and static field. The rest is spent in cold mastery. I wouldn't invest into another fireball/meteor synergy.

I think a dual element sorc can live rather well without having Infinity on the merc. Those few fire+cold immunes can be weakened with static field and then pushed against a wall with telekinesis (a teleport prereq, so you have a point in there) and the merc can deal with them while being in eternal hit recovery.
Oh of course, Infinity is by no means required, especially when using a Tal's setup. Didn't mean to imply that! Just trying to address how to keep strengthening the char, and LK can do that on several fronts.
 

darkstarhub

Diabloii.Net Member
As @jonnyphive said for sure. Infinity is definitely not needed. I really wanted to change things up this time around, so throwing an Infinity into the mix sounded interesting. My big concern was running out of Mana all the time without Insight, but it’s not to bad. Besides, I have a ton of Purples stashed up so it’s a good use for them.

If I could ever find a Deaths Fathom I want to use it with Nightwings to just buff the hell out of FO and FB will still be strong. I’ve never found a DF, ever, so it’s a long shot. I very rarely see white, blue, or yellow Dimesional Shards drop.

Like @krischan said, Static Field them down and pin them against a wall while the Merc pokes them to death. It works well, and I still find myself resorting to this occasionally even with an Infinity. Lord DeSeis is unbreakable Cold/Fire Immune sometimes.
 

krischan

Europe Trade Moderator
Like @krischan said, Static Field them down and pin them against a wall while the Merc pokes them to death. It works well, and I still find myself resorting to this occasionally even with an Infinity. Lord DeSeis is unbreakable Cold/Fire Immune sometimes.
That's how my badly equipped meteorb sorc (I started with her on SP) dealt with that cold+fire immune Trav Council while doing the quest in hell mode. Of course, it also involved quite a bit of running away... err around!
 

TheGuardianXXXIII

Diabloii.Net Member
That telekinesis trick is really awesome on the cold+fire immunes. Stops them from moving/casting and the merc can take them down pretty quick!
 

jonnyphive

Diabloii.Net Member
Yeah, and the perk of being Fire/Cold-based is that you are basically 2.5 elements due to the 50% damage done by 1-point static, which is further enhanced by TK-locking the half-dead mob. (TK lock works on LI monsters too, of course, but it's nice to see how well a fire/cold sorc can handle almost any situation.)
 
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