Before venturing out of town make sure that you have precast Burst of speed + Venom and our Shadow master.
Part 1 of immobilizing At the first sign of trouble/monsters immediately cast Cloak of shadows.
optional: After part 1 ,depending on the difficulty/location i.e. Blood moor or Worldstone Keep The use of Mind blast to convert a few monsters first may be appropriate.
Part 2/3 of immobilizing Join your Merc and Shadow Master and immediately Fully charge Blades of Ice and release with Dragon Tail.
Providing theres no cold immunes they should be frozen or chilled and/or Knocked back or shattered. Only in later parts of hell may there be still some monsters remaining. If thats the case-
Fully charge BOI again + fully charge Tiger strike and release with DT . Rinse and repeat.
Never release yout DT on a Physical immune as the resulting Fire damage will be ZERO , UNLESS you are relying on Cold/Light to Kill.
When we encounter a CI we can choose to then use either Tiger strike + Dtail or Claws of Thunder.
I find that even though a monster is not fire or light immune they often take more damage from one than the other.
i.e . A lower damage COT could kill quicker than a higher damage Dtail.
Usually a safe bet is to charge with Tiger Strike first and see how quick its life goes down after the first Dtail release. If the reduction is not what you would expect switching to Claws of thunder will usually see the job done quicker.
Remember that champions/Uniques/Bosses CANNOT be frozen although they can be chilled.
If you are unfortunate to find yourself surrounded with no obvious means of escape then you did something wrong. However all is not lost as Dtail alone will push everything around you away giving you some breathing room to either regroup or make a quick retreat.
Specific MF Areas
At these popular MF locations you can decide yourself how you aim to get there. The Pit and Pindle can easily be obtained by running alone, but at Mephisto and Baal i would recommend using Enigma for the Teleport skill if the fastest possible runs are needed( although i personally find doing Baal runs slowly killing everything on the way to be very enjoyable and immensely satisfying).
This area contains just about every type of immunity there is and is where this build really shines.
The fastest way there if on foot is via the Outer Cloister WP then back through the big door to be immediately in the Tamoe highland.
With plenty of space to manouver, the entrance can be found without engaging a single monster.
Mostly Corrupt rogues and zombies are to be found here and as a general rule:
Only cast Cloak of shadows if you find any misiles heading your way as the chance to cast it again may be a while longer than it will take you to take out that group.USe Mind blast instead if you must.
If they are NOT CI then use normal tactics BOI + DTAIL will make small work of all down here.
If they ARE CI then using only Dtail is sufficient. Usually 3-4 kicks and that group is now dead.
The immobilizer has no trouble clearing this area quickly.
Here make sure you precast all skills except for your shadow as you do not need her straight away.
Ignore all the corpses on the floor immediately as you enter the red portal as they are always cold immune , proceed instead directly to the room that contains Pindle.
As you enter this room , the second you can glimpse Pindle and his crew cast your shadow smack in front of the group , followed immediate by casting Cloak of shadows ( this gives the group something to occupy them whilst you blind them).
Immediately After casting COS start to spam Mind blast on the ones nearest to you until 1 or 2 monsters get converted.
Then approach to the right hand side of your shadow ( seems to give a better view of everything being on the right instead of the left) and charge your Blades of ice and release . Everthing that was in the blast radius (except pindle) will be frozen so immediately charge another BOI + a TS and release... rinse repeat.
Often pindle is killed as well whilst attacking the others unless hes cold or fire immune (he can be all types immune).
If he is not treat him like any other boss when hes alone .. depending on his immunity pick the best attack ( you have them all).
ps The immobilizing effect will minimise the chance for you to be attacked whilst Identing your newly found Unique Hydra Bow as most of the killed minions will be shattered and wont come back to haunt you .
If you decide to do pindle whilst in 8 player games (ie whilst waiting for a baal run) he will obviosly take longer to kill but the same tactics apply. Make sure you stay close to the far end near the exit down as this stops you attracting any corpses from outside coming in to spoil things for you.
Not much to be said here other than running there can be difficult due to lack of space and many doors to go through , so using Dflight can aid you to pass a group thats in your way.
Once at mephisto treat him like any boss , Charge everthing until dead.
Here you have two choices Tele / or Fight your way there. Running there will 99.9% of the time = death so dont try.
If you fight beware of Black souls and remember to use COS alot. Here a higher level COS is better as not all groups go down as quick.
Once in the throne and and the area is cleared :
On all waves
Cast your shadow in the middle of where the each wave appears BEFORE THEY APPEAR and as they do appear cast Cloak of shadows.
Convert 1-2 monsters by spamming Mblast a few times and recast your shadow if necessary.
Go in CHarge BOI + DT........ BOI + TS+ DT ........BOI + TS + DT ..........etc
Recast COS if needed.
The skeletons that are made are all cold immune but CAN still be shattered so charge BOI + TS + Dtail continuous . The TS/DT combo will kill the skeletons quick and all BOI/TS/DT will damage the mummys (that revive the skeletons) as well at the same time.
These guys are on a mission to destroy you but immobilizing effect of the build makes it much easier to tank. Always try and start to tank minions that are furthest from Lister and keep the frozen minions inbetween you and him at all times. Only when hes alone must you try to take him out. As he cant be frozen and he does hit hard, back away til hes focused on your merc or shadow then go attack.
Here i find more often than not that hes Dual immune and its usually Cold + Fire so having a max Claws of thunder is awsome.(COT+TS+DT)
Often an entire wave may be FIre immune , so here dont bother charging TS instead use BOI+COT+Dtail (Dtail still knocks back and releases our charges even though in itelf it will do 0 AOE damage , although it will do physical to the 1 we release on)
Keep yourself so you cannot see baal himself , as this puts you out of range of his Decrepify curse. If you do get cursed then Spam MBlast and retreat to town to heal yourself.
Get into the habit of recasting Burst of speed + venom inbetween each wave.
Finally Baal himself. Hes releatively easy to tank but it can sometimes take a while due to his high life. Keep plenty of mana potions as he uses a mana burning attack which can be rather annoying.
If he uses the cold attack and you get pushed away ,using DFlight can get you and your companions right next to him again to continue.
If possible get yourself up against a wall so if he does use his cold attack it wont push you away.
Make full use of his festering appendages he uses often , they will give you a nice mana boost when attacked. To melee or not to melee
I have found that using low ED Bartucs/Jade means i have never died when i have been cursed with Iron Maiden and hit somethng. 4 hits usually means i have lost 1/2 my life and not dead (unlike in 1.09). When this happens switch to secondary weapons and use Blade fury on all Doom knights etc( the ones that can cast curses). They always have low life and are quite easy to kill from Blade fury alone.
Againt single Bosses then charging of all skills BOI+Ts+COS+DT to unleash 15k-35k of cold/fire/light/physical/poison damage. Suffice to say you will cut through anything like butter
Initially i thought that the ACT 2 AR boosting merc would be best for this build but having just over 7000k AR at lev 85 is more than enough to hit anything when combined with COS . SO i now use the Defiance Merc to boost my Defence to make it even harder to be hit. Expect to get about 4.5-5k def.
Kit your Merc out with Reapers Toll /Shaft/ Rockstopper to give him nice DR + resists + he'll cast decrepify often to slow everything by 50%, that combined with your Freeze/chill will slow everything to a crawl.
The effectiveness of this build is apparent as soon as you can use both BOI + DT on normal.
I suggest putting alternative points in BOI/DT untill maxed BUT putting points into prerequisites when available.
2nd should be PS maxed then finally COT.
If you plan leveling beyond 88 then might i sugest puting points in TS to boost your fire damage
Finally may i ask for any comments/suggestions/Feedback pls
Greetings to all of those bitten by a mad bug.
I am an Assasin Enthusiast who, after a lot of remakes, have settled on creating the assassins which differ (a little) from the main stream. I play on the Europe Realm. I started out playing the Amazon but as soon as the Expansion came out I jumped to the Assasin and stuck with it ever since. The Sin is just so versatile that her arsenal can’t be beat by any other class (at least in my book). Now with patch 1.1 and the ending of the first Ladder season I’ve sat down and once more worked on this build. While knowing there are 23 unknown runewords waiting to be discovered, and that this build might very well be depending on these runewords, I’ve revamped some of the build. Not much though.. so for those whom already read this.. you may not see the changes but they are there.
No there hasn’t been any ‘gear’ changes yet… I’m sorry but due to unreasonable prices in trading lately I*ve been unable to afford the ‘richer’ testing. This will have to wait. So I’m posting my findings from version 1.1-1.2
So far the threads of the Furysin has received 19 000+ visits, so there is definitely truth to the words of the guide.. it works. So enjoy the reading.
Europe Realm : Acc : SonOfRa
1.2 A few words on the Furysin
The following is a build concentrated around the use of the skill ‘Blade Fury’. It’s a loose guide on how you can make this build work in multi player games. It is however NOT viable in PvP (this will be explained later).
The build can be frustrating at times, so if you’re a kill-on-one-hit kind of person, if you’re not, then this is the build to try. It is a build for a more experienced player and a build that will take some time to grow accustom to, as well as some specialized gear to acquire. Part of the fun in this build is the gathering of the items required, for you see some are easy to get, that you can get them for free.. others.. well yes I admit they are hard to get, anyways more on that later.. Once you have acquired what you feel is right then sit back and enjoy the ride.
1.3 Meet the FurySin
Abnormal... You say something there.
Abnormal is right. When you look at assassin you'll see the 'Trapper's place their lightning sentries and blast away a path through the monsters for all to follow. Leaving behind corpses.
You won't believe your eyes when you see the 'Kicker's speed, as he unleash a fury of kicks against his enemies. Suddenly appearing elsewhere to release the deadly punishment of a Frozen Orb, the pain of the Phoenix Lightning or the earth shattering damage of the Meteor. Indeed you will notice this one with her shouts.
While you think you've seen it all the 'Dual Claw Master' moves in for the kill. With deadly accuracy and power he tears into his enemies taking a beating, but nothing compared to what he gives back..
Well with these three very used and very good builds... it's no wonder you didn't notice the practically invisible assassin standing in the back looking like he was hidden in the shadows, leeching.
BUT HEAR ME NOW! He's not leeching he's unleashing from the shadows his wrath. The 'Blade Fury Sin' takes your breath away with his speed at which the blades are thrown, only rivalled by the fastest bow Amazon, they are like a mini Chain-gun. He stand there while his shadow holds the monsters at bay, and as the fight goes on you start to wonder if he even has a use.
It looks like the monsters will over run him soon, then as if a cloud moves away from the sun, or rather as if light becomes darkness for in the shadows the Assasin rules, the first monster fall. In a anguishing scream the monsters fall one by one. With a huge group still standing and dealing it's punishment you see then suddenly stunned, and then the body parts start to fly. With sudden silence the fury of the blades has stopped and have been replaced by the awesome deadliness of the Death Sentry. A scary sight for the weak at heart.
With elegance and grace, as if he had all the time in the world the Fury Sin moves through the body parts.. no he doesn't run as fast as the other sins, charging into the next combat. No his graceful style wouldn't allow that.
You stop a moment and ponder what happened here. Then you see the Fury Sin engage the next group of monsters blinding them and ensuring the cover of darkness to allow his wrath to be unleashed... yet again... and again
If you like a character whom dodge in and out of combat. Whom almost literally walk through the acts. Using stealth and cunning as well as a touch of wits. Then this is the build for you.
2.1 Advantages :
Some of the advantages listed are :
- Ranged combat.
- Lots of Skills to chose from.
- Unique fighting style.
- Maximum attack speed from the first time you use it.
- High Resistances.
- Able to damage everything in the game, nothing is immune to you.
- Different castings.
- 98% Chance for Crushing Blow (see 3.3) (Note : max =95%).
- 43% chance of Open Wounds (see 3.1).
- 52% chance of Critical / Deadly Strike (see 3.2).
- Near Max Resistance.
- Near Max Damage Reduction.
2.2 Disadvantages :
The disadvantages are :
- One of the main problems : Attack Rating (see 3.5)
- Grounded when attacking.
- Sucks in PvP (see 6.1)
- Low blocking.
3.1 Open wounds
Open wounds causes the player affected by it to loose life for a given amount of time, it works far better than poison as it can't be resisted. The only way to reduce the effect of open wounds is to use health potions or replenish life.
The player affected by open wounds loose life according to this formula
Duration: 200 frames (8 seconds - There are 25 frames per second).
Clvl 10: 11.8 per sec over 8 seconds for a total of 94.5 damage.
Clvl 30: 42.6 per sec over 8 seconds for a total of 340.6 damage.
Clvl 50: 99.7 per sec over 8 seconds for a total of 797.7 damage.
Clvl 70: 178.8 per sec over 8 seconds for a total of 1430.5 damage.
Clvl 90: 266.7 per sec over 8 seconds for a total of 2133.6 damage.
The damage is divided by 4 for a player target. In addition, for a missile versus a player target one should divide the damage by 8 instead. Versus bosses and champions (could be just bosses or special bosses) the damage is divided by 2
3.2 Deadly Strike and Critical Strike
Deadly strike and critical strike both have a chance of triggering a double damage effect. The deadly strike effect is applied after all other damage bonuses. Critical strike and deadly strike exclude each other.
The formula of dealing double damage with deadly strike and critical strike is:
Chance of double damage = CS + (DS/100)*(100-CS)
Critical Strike : 31%
Deadly Blow : 30%
Calculation : 31% + (30/100)*(100-31)
Critical Strike : 52%
(Not 61% as many might think)
3.3 Crushing blow
This is a chance of reducing a monster's health by X% in a single blow. This is one of the things which makes this build great for taking down the ‘bosses’.
vs. Players: 10%
vs. Hirelings: 10%
vs. Champions, Uniques, Bosses: 12.5%
with missile weapons: 6.25%
3.4 Damage Reduction
Reduce the amount of damage you take from an attack. There is a 50% Cap on these items.
3.5 Attack Rating
Blade Fury DOES rely on attack rating…. Let me say that again, yes you will need attack rating otherwise you won’t hit anything.
The Attack rating of the Furysin is and WILL continuously be a matter of debate. Some want to rely on items for AR. Some want charms. Some skills. There is no doubt that you will find that AR is an issue you better address sooner than later. With that said let me say the following.
My guide is build on the assumption that your final weapon will be a weapon using ITD. While ITD goes a long way it doesn’t solve all situations and that is why I have added the Demon Limb on my switch for added AR (more on that later).
There are many sources of AR. Some will say : Claw Mastery. Note to yourself that if you choose to use Claw Mastery that it will ONLY work if you use a Claw (Yes that should be a given but some don’t know that). If you rely on your Merc for attack rating.. be sure that he doesn’t die, for if he does, you’ll have little other option than to run.
A whole debate has submerged on what to do. Some don’t want to use ITD. Some don’t want to live with out it. So choose which path you want to take before you start out, it will make your Furysin much more manageable. Either go the dex/ar/charms/items route. Or the expensive ITD route.
Going the dex route will have the benefit of you having the option of maxed block.
Going the ITD route will mean more damage/life.
All in all attack rating can be gained in various ways, which will be listed under items later on.
3.6 What works.. what doesn’t?
Things to remember is that almost anything works with blade Fury (ALMOST)… Here is a list :
-Ignore Target Defense
-Deadly Strike/Critical Strike from CM
-Hit Causes Monster to Flee
-Chance to cast on Striking
-Hit Freezes Target
-Elemental Damage/Venom (3/4)
-Hit Blinds Target
-Prevent Monster Heal
-Hit Slows Target
-Physical/Weapon Damage (3/4)
What doesn't work
-Chance to cast on Attacking
4.1 Attributes :
Your attributes should be fit to suit your gear. These are though the listed attributes for the gear I have selected to use. Feel free to move these figures around to suit the gear you choose.
(* - Dexterity is a touchy subject. I have chosen 75, in that I have also chosen to ignore dodge, this is mainly cause I use Tiamats and the dexterity needed to max dodge with this shield is just so high that I dropped it. Some may choose to use Storm Shield instead, forfeiting the damage that is their choice, its not needed. Since I have this low dexterity I also bind my hands on another matter… attack rating. See 3.4)
As mentioned I have not chosen to go for the block variation of this build. If you want to go this way, do move more points into dex (close to 125-150 is needed). This will greatly help you with your attack rating as well but do it mainly for block. It will be taken from your vitality, of course.
4.2 Gear :
Gear is a very touch thing with this build, you will find that even one item will either make or break the build. I suggest highly that you either start out with trying to copy these items or at least find something that mimic them. (At the end of the guide there are some low level recommendations as well as some optional gear)
Helmet : Guilluames Face – (35% crushing blow, 15% deadly strike, 30% faster hit recovery and +15 strength)
Armor : Duress (ShaelUmThul) – (15% crushing blow,33% open wounds, resistances and damage)
Amulet : Highlords Wrath - (%Critical strike according to level, +1 skills, minor lightning damage.)
Boots : Gore Riders (15% crushing blow, 15% deadly strike, 10% open wounds and 30% faster walk/run)
Gloves : Soul Drainers (4-7% mana and life leech, -50 monster def. per. hit. and 8% chance to cast Weaken.
Rings : Raven Frost (Cannot be Frozen, Attack rating and Cold Damage) Carrion Wind (life leech, 8% chance to cast Twister, Poison Resistance.)
4.3 Weapons of Choice
There are really a lot of choices here but mainly look for weapons with % to crushing blow. The Crushing Blow stat combined with Static on chance to cast are definitely the way to go, you will want these stats and getting to is of vital importance the higher in level you get.
Keep in mind that Blade Fury suffers a ¾ penalty. So the smart person would say .. then get a HUGE damage weapon.. like like like a Colossus Blade and do Cresent Moon on it.. Sounds good but no. ALL… ALL 2 handed weapons suffers an additional penalty. Making it 3/8 the damage .. and thus making it a bad weapon of choice. Keep that in mind when looking for weapons.
My first weapon which I want to mention is :
Ethereal ‘Cresent Moon’ Cryptic Sword. http://img24.exs.cx/my.php?loc=img24...resentMoon.jpg
It has all the stats you could ever dream of, lower target resistance, ignore target defence, chance to cast static and much more. (see section on charms for more on this.)
Since Blade Fury DOES NOT use DURABILITY then Ethereal Weapons DO NOT need ZOD. I repeat, Blade Fury does not use durability contrary what ANYONE might say. This has been tested over a period of 2 months. Where the same weapon was used… and no it was not indestructible.
The potential damage of this sword is : 350+ and the Static on it just makes it nicer.
My main weapon of choice : STORMLASH. http://img24.exs.cx/my.php?loc=img24...=Stormlash.jpg
Stormlash has it all. Elemental damage. Static on chance to cast (15%). Huge damage. Crushing Blow. Low stat requirements (high level though).
This is the best weapon for a Blade Fury Assasin. The weapon will make short work of opponents/monsters.
There is a lot to be said about this weapon but those whom don’t know it .. well look it up and see it in action and you will know why I’m speechless. Those whom do know it.. well wipe off that smile!
If you can get one Etheral.. well then I bow before you.
The Potential Damage : 1k+ and the Static on it makes it just that much nicer!
Alternative Weapons which definitely deserves mentioning, they are high level yes, but that is what is needed :
Etheral Baranars Star
Etheral Nords Tenderiser
4.4 Comparing Cresent Moon vs Stormlash.
I tested my two weapons .. and in testing the Cresent Moon and the Etheral Stormlash I saw something striking.
My test subject was :
With the stats :
Life : 1591 (No Absorb and 16% damage reduction).
Fire : 70.
Lightning : 75.
Cold : 75.
Poison : 48.
I damaged with 1 blade, with Enchant and Venom turned on.
Cresent Moon Cryptic Sword-vs-Etheral Stormlash
1 : 1274 (11xx) ------------------- 1376 (1173)
2 : 1234 (800) -------------------- 1347 (1056)
3 : 1400 (1186) ------------------- 1274 (900)
First number is the life which is initially left… the one in parentheses is the life left after Open Wounds. (So basically 1 blade did : close to 400 damage in PvP.)
Note : When firing 2 blades are always shot off. Some of these hit both times. Some only hit once.
The numbers speak for themselves really.
So is it worth waiting around for ages to get an Etheral Beserker Axe 3 Socketed or an Etheral Cryptic Sword 3 socketed… The Cresent Moon Measures up to the Lash…
But keep in mind this is PvP. PvM is different for 2 reasons. Static and Crushing Blow… those two have not been factored into this equation.
4.5 Notes on Gear
As you may notice … I have totally ignored block. As I mention above I choose Tiamats, for the damage and low Dex requirement as well as the Resistances it provides. I choose to ignore block, cause if a monster gets close to me then I’ve made a mistake.
As for those whom wants to use Storm Shield or another shield, get the 1XX dex needed and you’ll be fine there as well. Yes it’s definitely worth it, it is a matter of playing style.
With this gear you will find that you’re not in too bad a shape with damage reduction, simply cause Fade (which you’ll Max) will give you ca. 20% damage reduction … if you use String (or Verdungos) that will most likely be another 15% .. so 35% or close to it. While this doesn’t sound like much you’ll have to keep in mind that Soul Drainers cast weaken almost all the time making all foes damage you at 2/3 their potential. Not bad really
So on top of probably having max resistances in hell, you’ll also find that, you can take a few hits… well ok a ‘lot’ but that is that.
Take a licking and keeps on ticking.
A lot of things could be used with this build. All elemental damage is viable here. Damage is damage so why not just get what you can get. Well not quite.
Most people go for poison, the one many prefer is the 290, even if it is a dupe and what ever.. many have it.. many use it. So here you’re thinking wow, small charm .. 290 in damage.. NICE?… NOT!!.. Sorry.
290 is over 10 seconds. That is 29 over 1 second. That is 13 over .4 of a second which is what venom will do to it. It will remove the long effect of the poison charm, and make it into something which only last 0.4 seconds.
Still a lot? Well compare that to : 1-40 small lightning charm and you know why I have ignored poison charms ….
Which all this said I have chosen to look at my gear and let that dictate what I should use. I choose Lightning Charms. Both Small (1-41) and Medium (1-81). They aren’t that expensive and are reasonable easy to get. You will do a lot of lightning damage, which will have lowered resist on it. 10% of it in fact if you’re really lucky with those facets.
Yes you can survive without the facets but why not tweak your build if you got the cash for it.
Why lightning damage?
Well you could choose other charms I just choose lightning cause I already had a ton of it on my weapon. I know I will be using Lightning Facets to make Static more effective, so why not kill two birds with one stone and make my damage more effective as well with charms.
There are 2 to stay away from : poison (as mentioned above) and max/min damage. The reason for the later is that you don’t have enough +% damage to make them effective. Sad but true.
Yes I do encourage you to get Anni… It will allow you to remove the Um from your Tiamat and instead socket it with a Lightning Facet. I recently did this and was very pleased with the result.
4.7 Gear socketing.
Subject to change… feel free to change what U want.
Weapon : Jah (unless it already has Ignore target Defence) or Mal (prevent Monster Heal) or Eth (-target defence .. till you can get Jah)
Shield : Um (Lightning Facet if you’re rich and has Anni)
Helmet : Lightning facet
While these things are all somewhat expensive the build can do without them (except the Jah of course) and you can use other things if you choose.
I have played Diablo II since it came out and have from the start of the expansion really loved the Assasins. I’ve though over the years now been annoyed at the same build being used by everyone, that I’ve tried to create my own and odd/strange builds which still work. They are not cookie cutter builds, I don’t make those. They are though different ways of using gear and skills, a new and fresh approach to doing the exact same thing.
Europe Realm : Acc : SonOfRa
The Immobilizer Build (http://www.rpgforums.net/showthread.php?t=218817)… to better understand the background of the Cold Maidens you should read this build. I’ve taken the research and edited it into this guide, but just for reference, look at it. With that said and my compliments to Morris being paid…
1.2 A few words on the Cold Maiden
The Cold Maidens are assassins using their specialized skills to deliver a cold attack, or to freeze their enemy. Rather than a conventional Claw/Claw Elementalist the Maidens use the Blade Skills to enhance their area of effect, and to provide them with some great ground control.
The build focus on the melee aspect but incorporates into this the Shield and Sentinel. Working with these two skills to enhance the cold of the charged Blades of Ice and Phoenix strike.
To the eye it will look like the : Immobilizer, and you will hear me mentioning this build a lot. That is cause this is a ‘sister’ build to that, and cause the research done in this build is outstanding. The Maidens contrary to the Immobilizers though have a very heave focus on gear. Their gear is very limited, and restricted. It’s not till level 78 that you will be able to truly be a Maiden.
That means that yes you have a long part of the game in which you’re aspiring to be a Maiden.. but you aren’t truly one till you reach level 78.
1.3 Meet the Cold Maiden
The palace felt the cold bite of winter approach. Yes Harrogath was still under siege from Baals minions and the early morning frost was still in the air.
A small group had gathered in the town square, around the fountain, watching Cain speak to a slender figure. The could which covered her was a pale light blue, like a soft winters kiss on the cold glass window. She had come during the night and as they talked it became apparent that she was to join the raid on Shrenk who held the town in his futile grasp. As the barbarians started to gather the lithe figure removed her robe and adorned her helmet… She looked weak and fragile compared to the brute of the men from Harrogath, she heard a laugh or two in the back but paid no notice. As she spilled on the blades, she thought back upon when she was given the blades of the Shadow Killers. Still as crystal clear as the day she got them. No a single scratch on them. Yes she had only just aspired to become a ‘Maiden’ a few weeks earlier.. now though a fully fledged Maiden it was time to come from the shadows to reveal herself to the world…. Not quite the greeting she had hoped for.
Morning passed and as noon approached the men started to line up at the gates, getting ready for their assault. She too joined them…. The men laughing and joking at her, the classic : Ladies first..
As the gates opened she walked out… leading the charge… Stopped for a second, and looked around. The men busted out in a laugh and let their opinion be known that way.
Then all hell broke loose. The Maiden focused and sent loose the blades which flew about her by the magnetic aura. Her speed was increased and in a flash she started to charge up the pathway towards Shrenk. A few of the laughs died out and the men pulled their wits together as they started to charge after. Little chance did they have to reach a foe for before they did he was at their feet. They were struggling to keep up, as she came to a group she looked back and made sure everyone were following, then a weak smile appeared on her lips, as she sent loose a large blade, letting it run in front of her as she charged into the group. The first few monsters started to feel the bite of the cold. Shivering and stopping in their tracks, she unleashed her claws which dug into the flesh of the monsters. Striking fast, while surrounded by the bitter cold seemed like second nature. To the assassin maybe but not to the monsters.
Chilled in their tracks each, one by one, felt her fury.. one by one they fell like frozen shards, left to melt away as the sun slowly took hold of the noon. The silence was only broken by the charge of the barbarians of Harrogath… indeed their laughs had been replaced with heavy breathing from the run to keep up.
Tales were told of this day in the years to come… at each winter those of Harrogath still get a chill. Not from the cold but from the memories of the light figure who’s aura of cold influenced them all… indeed the Cold Maidens had left their mark on the world….
3.1 Damage Reduction
Reduce the amount of damage you take from an attack. There is a 50% Cap on these items.
3.2 What works.. what doesn’t with Blade Shield?
Here is a list :
Blade Shield (main claw only: i.e. the claw you equip first or the one that's left behind if you unequip one. Shields transfer their effects normally)
- Deadly Strike
- Elemental Damage/Venom (1/4)
- Physical/Weapon Damage (1/4)
What doesn't work
- Open Wounds
- Crushing Blow
- Hit Causes Monster to Flee
- Hit Freezes Target (Sigh here Blizzard really screwed up this skill)
- Chance to Cast on Striking (This one pains me but yeah they don’t work)
- Pierce Target
3.3 - Frozen vs Slowed (Chilled) Monsters
Frozen monsters do not suffer a Defensive Rating decrease when frozen, as Stone Cursed monsters did. In addition, not all chilled (slowed) monsters shatter into fragments upon death, only a percentage of them. All frozen monsters will shatter, however.
Below is a list of which monsters are Cold immune and whether they CANNOT BE FROZEN for HELL DIFFICULTY only. Each name is a group name and can include usually around 5 different types . ie Fallen contra Fallen, Carver, Devilkin, Dark One, Warped One. The first number is total cold immune , the second is total in that group
* Of the 3/4 , Skeleton mages have a random chance to deal None/Cold/Fire/Lightning so this means these 3 have a 1/4 chance to be cold immune or a 3 / 15 chance out of the total and could make the overall 24% even less.
* Blood Lords have very low Chill Effectiveness with one having 0 (Death Lord). Basically these will be hard to freeze.
Also Monsters from other acts can appear here randomly thus increasing/decreasing the percentage accordingly.
Whats interesting is that most Cold immunes still have the ability to be Chilled ( and thus shattered) and the Monsters listed as CANNOT BE FROZEN are usually NOT Cold Immune (although some like the Bone Fetish still has 75% Cold resist)
This means a high percentage of slain monsters will shatter and cant be resurrected (ie shamans) or exploded (ie Nihlathak).
(Credits : All work on section 3.3 are done by Morris)
4.1 Attributes :
Your attributes should be fit to suit your gear. These are though the listed attributes for the gear I have selected to use. Feel free to move these figures around to suit the gear you choose.
You need the strength and dexterity to equip the weapons later on described.. once though you have the vitality you feel is sufficient (I’ve chosen to stick with the 100 STR/DEX, and pump the rest into my vitality) then feel free to boost either. You may wish to use other gear which needs more or less requirements than the ones I’ve outlined.
4.2 Gear :
Gear is a very touch thing with this build, you will find that even one item will either make or break the build. I suggest highly that you either start out with trying to copy these items or at least find something that mimic them. Basically though the most important items in the gear which I feel are non negotiable its : Weapons + Amulet + Helmet. These three items are what this entire build is created around. If you remove them then in all honesty you’re a Maiden.. just not a Cold Maiden (Ok that was my rant of the day.. with that said.. here goes)
Helmet : Nightwings Veil (% of Cold Damage increased, +2 Skills, High Dexterity Boost)
Amulet : Eye of Etlich (+1 skills, life leech, hidden freeze duration of up to 10 seconds in normal.)
Gloves : Soul Drainers (Weaken… as well as mana and life leech. And on top of that makes monsters easier to hit. Can’t pass that up)
Armor : Chains of Honor (+2 Skills, damage reduction, but most importantly : RESISTANCES. Most of all the other gear gives you no resistance at all. With 65% resist all this is perhaps the best armor around. Another descent armor is : Smoke with a 50% resist all, and Duress. Also pondering and upgraded Iceblink – though that will be best of Normal and NM, I doubt at this time it will cut it in Hell.)
Belt : Verdungos (Damage Reduction and a healthy Vitality boost) , Siggards Stealth (Life leech and slow)
Shield : N/A
Rings : Ravenfrost (Needs no introduction at all, I use two of these at this time, in lack of a Natures Peace. You could supplement one of the rings for a Resist all ring with attack rating. That would also be very well placed.) Natures Peace (Slain Monsters rest in peace (*)
Boots : Yet to be decided, most likely it will be crafted boots with resistances, at this time though using a pair of Tearhaunce (small strength and dexterity boost as well a +10% resist all.)
Weapon : See 4.3
* - Slain Monsters Rest in Peace. Combined with the cold you’ll be putting out means there will be few to no corpses left. Thus Death Sentry isn’t the best choice for this build. It’s hard to make it work… so instead of try I totally left it out.
4.3 Weapons of Choice
Now most of the time when I work on a build I research : What items have Blizzard Created which people just never use or actually shone away from.
Then I look at : How can I use it.
I think the weapon of this build is exactly that
-The Shadow Killer Unique Claws.-
When you see this claw any good assassin player will say : “But it doesn’t have any skills and it doesn’t add to your attributes, sheesh SonOfRa Bartucs is way better. I’d even use a Jade Talon over this.”
“Yes yes children I know. Now please –hush-.” You see what this Claw does have is :
- Great look … bonus points for appearance.
- Desent Damage… close to 200 isn’t bad.
- +2 Freeze… now you’re talking!
- -25% target defence per hit.
- Mana after each kill, no need for mana leech?
- Frost Nova … 33% of the time.
And the hardcore Assasin players keep saying : “But SonOfRa… It has –no- skills nor attribute boost. I mean COME ON!”
Anyways rant on.. I use two of them and I’m quite happy. So there .. :P Neener.
4.5 Notes on Gear
The gear I’ve chosen has been done so looking exclusively at three stats. Skills, Cold Damage, or Freeze Enemy. If the gear had this stat then it was worth considering. There is other gear providing other stats than the ones I’ve chosen, but like the Furysin this is a build that is like a cocktail. Get it wrong and it taste bad, and doesn’t work. Get it right and well you got something good. The Cold Maiden is just that. A character dedicated to the Cold aspect of the elements. She does her job well, and will if given a chance make the game interesting in a new aspect.
The Gear is always vital, and feel free to look for other gear. Keep though in mind the body and soul of this build with is that of slowing the enemy. In more ways than one.
Charms is always a touch subject. I recommend Martial Arts Skillers.. preferably with cold damage. Stock up on as much cold damage as you possible can from skillers. Something like MA skillers with a little cold damage would be nice. Anni if you can afford it.. as it’s always worth the effort. Lastly the 6 small charms should be cold charms.
I personally prefer :
7 Grand martial Arts Skillers
6 Cold damage charms.
Leaving me room for Tomb of ID and tomb of TP.
And 2x4 free slots for picking up items.
Now, knowing that you will have a resistance problem the small cold charms could be changed for resistance charms, but if you can manage without them, do so.
4.7 Gear socketing.
Well Cold Facets are a no brainer.
Helmet : Cold Facet
Armor : Depending on Armor – Um rune
The general idea with the socketing like this is that you want to compliment what stats you lack. With the Cold Maidens … you will need all the resistance you can get, the lowering of enemy resist is also needed, as well as more damage and speed. On that note though the weapons could be socketed with a lot of things … the things I’ve looked at are (In the order of priority I think they should be) :
Ohm or 15% ias + XX% ed : Added Damage - Definitely something worth looking at. Speed is an issue you’ll want to address.
Shael : 20% ias – A definite worthy rune, cause more speed is always great with a build that relies on melee.
Cham : +3 Freeze – Is more freeze needed… You can never get enough in my book.
Thul : 3-14 Cold damage at 3 second duration – Cold Maiden.. jep this one should be looked at too.
El or Eth : +50 attack rating / -25% to Target defence : Well it’s always nice being able to hit your target.
Jah : Ignore Target Defence – Always a great Mod… but here you at least have the possibility for a good attack rating so it’s not needed either.
5.1 Skills :
The following a is guide on how the skill tree should look once you’re done. The skills are a rough guide, but altering them a lot will also change the build quite a lot.
5.2 Martial Arts Tree : (Total Spend : 48)
Tiger Strike : 1
Cobra Strike : 1
Fist of Fire : 1
Claws of Thunder : 1
Blades of Ice : 20
Phoenix Strike : 20
Dragon Talon : 1
Dragon Claw : 1 (main finisher)
Dragon Tail : 1 (X if U want Dragon Flight)
Dragon Flight : 1 (X - great finisher in the midst of combat and problem solver if surrounded. Also it just looks great)
5.3 Trap Tree : (Total Spend : 24)
Fire Trap : 1
Wake of Fire : 1
Blade Sentinel : 1
Blade Fury : 1
Blade Shield : 20
5.4 Shadow Disciplines Tree : (Total Spend : 34)
Claw Mastery : 20
Claw Block : 10
Burst of Speed : 1
Fade : X
Psychic Hammer : 1
Cloak of Shadows : 1
Mind Blast : 1
(X = optional.)
Level 94 is the finishing level of where I leave off.. that is high but you can easily scrape off points here and there to complete it in the early 80’s, such as finishing off with maxing Blade Shield or leaving Claw Mastery at 10. I have Claw Mastery at 10 at level 84 and is pumping it from now on.)
Player vs Player is always a factor people want to take into account when talking about a build… I hate to say it. While this build could work in PvP, sadly it doesn’t. Problem is really that everyone and their mother has Ravenfrosts… and just wearing two of them will negate just about 98% of what you’re trying to do.
With that said… it’s a challenge.. don’t pass it up. If they don’t have the Ravens on.. well then they will be slowed.. a lot and for a long time.
This build is good at PvM. It’s build for PvM. I’m sure that with a bit of tweaking it’ll be great for PvP too but the main idea is that you focus on the general game play and that your alternative style comes to show. People generally focus on cookie cutter builds and we have a lot of the same kinds of characters.
Therefore. The Furysins and Cold Maidens.. well they are my kind of builds, cause they are abnormal and isn’t part of the norm.
6.3 Tactics Guide.
The Tactics of the Cold Maidens are somewhat complicated. It takes a good deal of timing, but once archived can be quite effective, even in 8 player games.
Before Combat : You precast – Blade Shield + Burst of Speed or Fade, your preference.
(2B- An Alternative is to Blade Sentinel using Blade Fury. Replace the Sentinel Step 1 with a Fury one. Personally I like the Sentinel better for this build cause once cast it’ll do what you want it to do and you can do something else. Once you stop fury.. the fury stops too. http://img61.exs.cx/my.php?loc=img61...lternative.jpg)
3-Gain control of the group : Shadow Killers have innate Frost Nova, a charge or two of these will give you some crowd control.. and it’s fast. Also if you have problems use a few Mind Blasts. They are always good to have handy. http://img69.exs.cx/my.php?loc=img69...=3-Control.jpg
4-Freeze them : Charge up respectively Blades of Ice and Phoenix Strike.. and release with either Dragon Claw.. or Dragon Flight (*) .. Dragon Claw if you’re placed strategically in combat. Dragon Flight if you want to reposition, or just show off. From time to time throw in a Blade Sentinel. It looks good. http://img69.exs.cx/my.php?loc=img69...=4-Charge1.jpg
* - Note please that IF/WHEN you use Dragon Flight OR Blade Sentinel you will have a casting Delay of a few seconds, where you won’t be able to use one or the other. This takes timing and getting use to. In the beginning I found it very annoying, but now It’s second nature.
6.3 Leveling areas ideas :
The following is a small guide where you could level. It may not be what you find the easiest nor the best, it is though what I did.
As you can see once you hit a certain level, time to move on. Ignore how many times you die. If you level on the way NP, but get to where the XP is ASAP.
This is for levelling only, not for enjoying the game. While yes you could say that a lot of the game has been skipped, I will answer that you are free to go around this levelling guide, it is only posted to show where you will gain the most XP comparative to your level. This is meant as a guide IF you’re in a group. If you solo you will want to stick to areas a bit lower than your level.
So far I haven’t worked on a merc. I will though be using either an Act 3 Cold merc, or a Holy Freeze Act 2 Merc.
The Defensive Merc from Act 2 nightmare has Holy Freeze. While being a great tank it also slows the monsters, so if they ‘flee’ they don’t go far. If they attack they don’t attack so fast. If they run at you they rarely make it all the way.
Gear for non ladder would be a :
Shaftstop(Or the Hwanins Armor)
Bonehew (Hel + Amn)
Not much else to be said really… Get him high level fast… that is all that can be said really. He’s your trusted ally so use him often as you can.
Q : Are there any questions yet?
A : Nope.. but trust me they will come.
8.1 - Conclusion
Well that’s it.. Any and all suggestions made are of course welcome.
8.2 – Credits
Many of you have helped me with this guide, and inspired me to improve it. There are though a few people whom have done this more than most :
- Morris – For doing the research for the Immobilizer which is the preset to this build, and allowing me to steal with arms and legs from this build in order to fill out the blanks with this guide.
3.1 Stat points
3.2 Gear choices
3.3 Notes on Gear
3.4 Charm selection
3.5 Socket Help
4.2 MA Tree
4.3 Shadow Tree
4.4 Trap Tree
5.2 Clan-Honor Note
6.1 Leveling Guide (PVM)
7.3 Thank you
Hello all my friends here, my name is DOC. I have been playing this game for about 5 years now, and only posting here at the forums for about 4. I started when I was 12 when my brother forced me to play Diablo because he wanted to corrupt me in my young age. I have been playing Assassin’s since the day they first came out, and I have called this sin forum my home for as long as I know. This is however, my first attempt at a complete guide. So help me out.
The idea of creating this sin has been with me for about 6 or so months now. About back in March when I returned from my small break in playing, I joined a pubby game and was saddened by what most Trappers had resorted to; just spamming Mind blast till their opponents gave up and died. There really was no strong tactic that a trapper had left; they had becoming the world’s largest cookie-cutter build with their new synergies. I then went off to brainstorm my few but selective options. I went and began crunching some numbers to determine what damages I could get with a “Rebel” trapper, one who did not resort to Mind Blast. Out of that night of testing, I discovered this build, and while the skills it uses often cause much laughter, the damage output does not. I did not coin the term “Bombasin,” for my build, I just called it a New style Trapper when I first made it, but since I began posting my “Guru” threads, I saw a lot of people referring to a Sin who throws Fire Blasts and Shock Webs as “Bombasin.”
1.3 The Build
A Bombasin in a short sweet definition is a type of Trapper who uses the skills Shock Web and Fire Blast as their primary means of damage with a backup of the minion traps Lighting Sentry and Charge Bolt Sentry. They do not however, have any need to use the spamming skill of Mind blast.
Burst of Speed – BoS
Charged Bolt Sentry - CBS
Death Sentry - DS
Fire Blast - FB
Lightning Sentry - LS
Shock Web – SW
Faster Cast Rate- FCR
Faster Hit Recovery- FHR
Faster Run Walk- FRW
-Both Fire and Lighting sources of Damage
-A spamming skill (FB) that causes large amounts of Damage
-Ability to stun while still causing Damage (CBS)
-SW acts as a means to direct your opponents
-Lack of ability to hold opponent still
-Constantly need to be moving
-Lower LS damage than pure trappers
-Needs BOS for FB/Trap placement (No Fade)
-Fire Blast has a long Arc
3.1 Stat Point Placement
Strength: Enough to equip Gear (don’t forget Enigma!)
Dexterity: Enough for max block with Whistans/Stormshield
Vitality: All remaining Points
Energy: Please don’t be dumb, none here
3.2 Gear Choices
I will start off with mentioning what I use/prefer to use. I will try to list as many other options as possible, but when you think of it, as with most trappers, a lot of it ends up being a standard that you have to have; sometimes there is only one best. Also see 3.3 for notes on choices. I find when reading guides, it helps to have less clutter around the choices, for those who like to get the gist of the build real fast and read the reasons behind the choices later.
Other: Kira’s and Crown of Ages
Other: Skin of the Viper, Que Hagans
Other: Sandstorm Treks, Rare boots that add to run and walk, resist, stats, and faster hit recovery are nice.
Belt: Trangs Belt
Other: Arachnids, Vergundu’s
Rings: 2 x Sojs
Other: Raven Frost
Other: Rare 2 to sin w/ Resists and stats
Weapon: Heart of the Oak Flail
Other: Wizard Spike, Bartucs, Trap Claws
Switch: 2 Shadow Claws for buffing BOS
3.3 Notes on the Choices
Helm: I personally prefer the Shako on this build do to its inherent Life/Mana as well as its skills, there really is not any other helm out there anymore that is better all around for PVP than the Shako. However, if you find yourself lacking major resists, a Kira’s will give you a nice boost as well as save you a high rune when it comes time to socket (See 3.5). As For the Crown of Ages, that is nice for its plus to skill, Resists and its Damage reduce will help you stand your ground vs those heavy melee fighters, however, its heavy strength requirement knocks it out of my book.
Armor: Enigma, Enigma, Nigmar! Why O’ why did Blizzard invent this armor, it has become my worst enemy with all the Tele’ing characters out there, however, if you want to compete in a tele dueling league, than this armor is a MUST! Also, the 2 to all skills and other such mods that it gives just add to this largely over-powered armor. Other than that, the Skin of the Viper is nice because of its cast rate, skill and resists, but the Enigma is key.
Shield: I use a Lidless wall against casters, its FCR is needed for your teleport speed and its skill is also very nice to have. However, it is always important to have a Shield to switch to in case you duel a heavy melee character, therefore you must have either a Whistans or Stormshield in your stash and when you put it on you must have max block.
Boots: Waterwalks will give you Life which keeps you from dieing (durr), dex to help out you block as well as 5% to Max Fire Resist to help against Fire characters.
Belts: I currently use a Trangs belt for the sole purpose of its Cannot Be frozen mod, other than that, I would opt to use an Arachnids for its skill and FCR, however to use it, I would need to either ditch a soj and put on a raven (which would be nice for cold duelers) but I would be back at my same skill level, or I would have to stick a Cham in my helm, which is costly. The Vergundu’s would help against heavy melee by adding my life and raising my DR, but I would be stuck with the same Raven/Cham dilemma as before.
Gloves: Magefists, FCR and fire skill, nuff said.
Rings: The 2x Soj allows me to get skill points and a larger mana pool for teleporting around, although if I were to get the Arachnids I would be forced to use a Raven Frost, but it is always nice to have a Raven in your inventory for getting that nice absorb.
Ammy: Mara’s, Stats, Resists, and skills, there really is nothing that beats it unless you find a Rare Ammy that gives you more Resists and has plus to the stat that you need or more life. Other than that, I would stick with the Mara’s
Weapon: I love my Heart of the Oak, the Skills that it adds cannot be found anywhere else for a trapper, its Resists also are of very good need to you, however, if you cannot afford one, a nice Wizard Spike will do you will with its higher resists and higher mana pool. The Bartucs and Trap claw are mainly there for those who cannot afford a spike, mainly they are there for the plus to skills, but I would not recommend them.
3.4 Charm Selection
10x Trap charms (Life/FHR or plain will work)
9x Vita Small charms with FHR or FRW
I am currently operating on Plain Trap charms, however, if you can get nice ones with 30-40 life on them, that is about 300-400 life, so I would got for them if you can.
Key things to have:
Um: More resistances
Pdiamond: Cheaper Source of Resistances
Pruby: More Life
Cham: Cannot Be Frozen
So, when it comes to socket your items, you have to first look at your gear, mainly where your Cannot be frozen is coming from, if you use a Raven frost, Um your Shako, if you don’t and use 2x sojs and a Arachnids, Cham the shako. For shields, Um or Pdiamond it depending on your wealth. And the Ruby is just incase you want more life in your helm and you have cannot be frozen from somewhere else.
Well, now its time to find what exactly you have to do in order to kill things, I will start by running down a skill’s uses/what it does, followed by a quick overview of what to put in each tree, for those who like to scan really quickly.
Fire Blast: AKA Blaft: You throw a fire bomb at your opponent and make him hurt. This will be one of your main sources of damage in this build; you can manage to upwards of 6k fire damage with just one of these bombs. Its radius of 3.3 also gives it a nice little splash damage as well. When using it however, it’s best to be close to your enemy do to its incredibly long arc that it makes once you throw it.
Shock Web: This skill, although is has the evil 1-something damage on it, can be quite painful to those that under estimate it. Most when they first start dueling, will see the 22 spikes and think nothing of them, only to try and run through them and get hurt. Each spike does anywhere from 1-3500 damage to the enemy, and stays on the ground for quite some time. You can throw these down to direct your enemy and also use them to hide Lighting Sentry’s in them.
Lightning Sentry: We all know what this does, shoots a long reaching piece of lighting that makes nearly all duelers cry. Even though you are not maxing all its synergies, you can still get about 1-8.8K damage on it. Since you are not using Mind blast, this skill is only there as a secondary source of damage. Use it to keep you opponent guessing where you are going, and they will run, eventually however, they will make the mistake of running over a Blast or two. Also very vital against Casters.
Charge Bolt Sentry: Here we are, the one skill that I do not think anyone has ever seen to be used heavily in PVP, however, when you first cast, you will think that your bolts are no use to you, however, not only do they do damage and stun lock like crazy those melee characters, they also emit a kind a physiological warfare on your enemy do to them thinking they are bolts from a CS Amazon. Use CBS to take on melee, do to its ability to throw an opponent into a Block frame.
Wake of Fire/Inferno: 1 point wonders that add a nice boost to your synergies
Recommendation: 1 each
Claw Mastery/BOS/Fade: While Claw mastery is a pre-requisite, BOS is needed for both your trap laying speed and the speed at which you throw your Fire blasts. Also, since Mind blast is not there to hold off the enemy, you need to be quick on your feet to dodge all incoming attackers. Fade is just nice to have, but I would not recommend it unless you need major stack. I am currently casting my BOS at level 16 (it is base) with 2 shadow claws on switch, and that allows me to get max trap laying speed and blast throw.
Recommendation: 1 point each
Death Sentry: Nothing more than a Leveling device and a synergy to your other skills, after you get everything else, the rest of your points go here.
Recommendation: Rest of points
4.2 Martial Arts Tree
No Skills are needed here; you are a trapper who has Enigma.
4.3 Shadow Tree
1 point Claw Mastery
1 point BOS
1 point Fade
4.4 Traps Tree
20 Fire blast
20 Shock Web
20 Lighting Sentry
20 Charged Bolt Sentry
1 Wake of Fire
1 Wake of inferno
1-20 Death Sentry (Max Last)
You could technically get all 5 skills maxed by level 93 and after that, then I would go for a nice Shadow, but before, I find not much use for her.
Now although this is not going to be a new dominate build in the dueling world, one that is vastly over powered and will win every single duel it is in, it is still able to hold its own and win against most duelers. There are however, some classes that do give it a run for its money, and some that present a very tough match-up. For some of the tougher classes, I will come straight and tell you to worry when you face them, it may be a quick death for you. Also, as with all PVP guides, these are only some of the many ways of killing your enemy, most will take a lot of practice to get down, so you must learn to control you aiming before you give up and call me names. I hope you enjoy!
5.2 Clan-Honor Note
Well, this build was originally built for Clan-Honor rules, in those rules, the skill Teleport is banned on all characters, meaning I started this guy without teleporting. However, CH shunned my guy, and killed its use of BOS, thereby destroying its ability to evade attacks and lead the enemy into my minion traps and my bombs. After that, I de-geared him and moved on. However, recent things have happened, Guru Came back to life, and I can now duel in Clan Honor with this build, but Teleport is still banned. However, in an effort to make this guide of use to more people who do duel in a Teleport league, I went out an attempted to learn how to duel with teleport and against Tele characters. Therefore, some of my tactics are still gathering information. In the tactics, I will try to post both a CH environment tactic (one without Teleport) and a Tele tactic. However, some builds I have only met in one environment, and not the other.
5.3 Learning to Duel
Key: CH= Clan Honor
Tele= Teleporting allowed
Amazons: Tele Pure Bow: Start out by testing her firing speed. Run up to about a screen or two away and cast some LS traps, odds are she will fire some GA at you to ward you off. Run down her mana by circling her and make sure to keep you traps one step ahead of her as she pauses to shoot. If she breaks into a run, Tele on top of her and drop a few quick blasts, since your LS will have eaten away at here life, 3-4 bombs should do the trick.
Throwers: Whether they are poison or lighting, the main key is to never get hit. Their attacks are always easy enough to see coming at you so you should dodge out the way. When you run, never run in a straight line and always try and keep them moving. Cast up some CBS, to scare them away from places you don’t want them to go, make them take your path, back towards you. When they finally run onto your screen, do a quick tele fly by and drop a few bombs. This will cause them to start throwing javs at you, during which you stop and Cast down LS around them. Use more SW to cause them to run off again and repeat your blast tele runs.
Charged Strike: It’s rare to see a charged strike Zon that tele’s after you, or at least I have never seen one. Bait them into chasing you on foot, but due to your speed you will get ahead, cast some CBS behind you, and it will begin to stun them, causing a slight jerky movement in their running. Throw down some Blasts in front of their path, and get them to run over it. However, wear you block shield for this duel.
Hybrids: Most all Amazons I have seen in CH are hybrids; they will always have some combination of charged strike and a Poison Java along with a bow on switch. If you see them chasing after you, use your CBS to stun them. Circle around them throwing blasts at them, and slowly wither down their health. If they start to get lucky hits off, use your SW to cause them to move, nobody is dumb enough to stand still when they have a web beneath their feet. If they pull out a bow Cast up a LS and cause them to keep moving, they cannot shoot if they can’t stop running. Try to keep them on the run the whole time, cover the ground near them with webs and FB and use the LS to get them to make a mistake and run into one.
Barbarians: Tele WW: Put on your block shield for these guys, they will have massive life and pack a hard punch. The normal WW barb will try and teleport right on top of you and WW. However, they cannot get on top of you if you stay moving, cast up some LS to start with, and then start running around your traps, when the Barb makes his move and comes at you, side step the WW and throw blasts in front of his whirl. After you get maybe 5 or so off, cast CBS in front of where you think he will come out of the WW. If he precedes to tele off again, start over at the beginning, but if he comes at you again with a second Whirl, side step and FB him, leaving the CBS’s up.
Barbarians: CH WW: You will end up using most of the same tactics that you would against a tele barb here. Cast up your LS to weaken them as they run towards you, then when the go into a WW, you side step out of the way throw blasts. However, if you know that their damage is not that great, you cast up 5 CBS around and throw blasts right at your feet, sure they might hit you, but they are also WW’ing through you deadly FB.
Concentrate: Your main goal with these guys is to lead them around like a tour guide. Cast up some CBS, and zig-zag through them, causing the barb to follow. If he becomes stubborn, throw some FB at him, which will get him moving. Use your SW to keep him from getting to close, throw it at your feet if you feel he is going to start name-locking you.
Assassins: Tele Lighting Trappers: Well, when you look at the numbers, their traps will always do much more than yours so don’t get into a nice LS vs. LS war, because they have MB. However, most trappers in a duel against their own kind are hesitant to leave their nice safe zone with their 5 traps surrounding them. Use your SW as a means of warning, run in and as soon as you see the MB spam start, Tele right on top of them and drop some quick blasts. Since they think that they have a MB lock, you will have the brief moment to drop a few blasts before their traps fire a 2nd shot and they can stun you. Since they thought you were also a Lighting trapper, odds are they will not have and fire absorb on.
WW: Treat these guys like a Whirl barb, except you will know when they are about to strike. Since most WW sins use Nats armor, they have to rely on their Dragon Flight to get up close a personal with you. Leave up your LS traps till you see them within DF range, then change to CBS because of its wider area of effect. Side step and blast, however, if you are hit, do not let them run; their Open wounds will eat you alive.
Kickers: Lighting Sentries work wonders against these guy, it will keep them at bay for a while as they will want to time their Dragon Flight just perfect. When they get in front of you, make sure you have your block shield on; a quick couple of blasts thrown at your feet will destroy them.
Assassins: CH WW: You can apply the same tactics that you would use in a Teleporting league
Kickers: You can apply the same tactics that you would use in a Teleporting league
Druids: Tele Wind: These guys will hurt you quite bad if you let them get on top of you, however, since most will be used to a trapper who stands still and tries to stun-lock, it will be hard for them to jump you and cast their tornados. Leave up your LS for the entire duel; try to keep him constantly recasting his bear and his Cyclone armor if you can. You SW will play a vital role here, as it plus your LS will keep the druid moving, worrying more about your traps and web, then about trying to kill you. Eventually, you will hopefully wear him down.
Fury/Rabies: Never seen in a Teleporting environment
Druids: CH Wind: Since this build lacks the great and powerful skill of teleport which is what makes them really scary, this will be a fun build you can toy against, however you still have to cautious. Since their main attack will be their tornadoes, just make sure that you are far enough back from them that you have plenty of time to dodge them; however, the tornadoes can change direction quite quickly. Other than being cautious, just make sure to keep you LS traps up to help keep their cyclone armor down, and use your blast and web to whittle their life down. This won’t be a tough duel, but one that will take a lot of time to finish its cat and mouse routine.
Fury/Rabies: Stay on the defensive against this build, their 4 frame attack can take you down faster than you can run away, so keep on the move and keep them from hitting you. Cast up some CBS and use the web to lead them into it. Blast them if they try to name-lock you and tail right behind you. However, if you get poisoned, you are so close to dead, you must switch to offense and change to LS and chase them down with blasts.
Paladin’s: Tele Foh: In a public environment, at least to my experience this is the only type you will run into, and therefore, I will keep it short and sweet. I have dueled many Foh pally’s in my time, and there is very little I can do to win the duel, this will be the hardest match-up you will have with any trapper IMO. Under no circumstances do you want to be on the same screen as them, because if you can see them, they can see you and kill you in one hit. Cast LS off screen in their direction and hope they stand still and get hit, because if you get in range to throw blasts, even with teleport, they will hit you.
Foh: You can apply the same tactics that you would use in a Teleporting league
Hammerdin’s: Much like the Wind druid, this match up won’t be hard, but time consuming. Both characters will have to rely on the other one making a mistake. Your main goal is to try and keep the paladin from moving too much. If he goes all over, he will cast hammers as he goes, setting a large scale hammer field. Most hammers will kill you in one hit so watch out. Use your LS to chase him around into all your blasts and webs, however, since most have very good life regeneration, always keep a watchful eye if they try and run to heal themselves.
Charger/Zealot: You will treat these guys much like a concentrate barb or a fury druid, but with a tad bit more care because of their ability to charge and catch up. If dealing with a pure charger, break into a run with your Lighting Sentry’s casted up in a kind of obstacle course. You will want to run down his mana so he will not be able to Vigor/Charge you as much. Then, throw your Web’s down and make him keep charging through them. Since the spikes remain for quite some time, it will be a good mine field. A Zealot involves him to keep moving, since you can’t go toe to toe with him, even with your Block Shield on, keep him moving with CBS knocking his health down till you can eventually blast him.
Necromancers: Tele Bone: Well, all I have to say is, most melee Assassin’s know how easy it is to outrun a bone spirit, and since you spend your time teleporting, just like him, all is well. This will be one of the funniest duels ever in my opinion. It will consist of you casting your LS over a good section of the Moore, and since they will be teleporting around most of the time, only stopping to shoot off a few Spirits, you repay the favor by only stopping to toss a few blasts on top of him, however you have the upper hand in that you also have your LS traps that are slowly wearing him down.
Poison: Play them from a distance, their nova is slow, but if they get on top of you, Tele away fast. Basically you are trying to hurt them and avoid their attack. Use your LS to hurt them, also add in your blasts if they are in range, however as with all poison, if you get them low in health or find that you got it, tele in as a suicide mission and drop a quick few blasts before they send up the Fire golem to finish you off.
Necromancers: CH Bone: Due to the recent banning of bone spirit, this build IMO has gotten harder, due to the fact they are now forced to spam the faster moving and still as damaging Spear. Dueling a Spear user in CH will often result in the mindless spamming of spear hoping that they will hit. Cast up your LS around him, cause him to run, however, with your speed you will be about to catch him quickly and toss a few blasts in. If he stops to fire, tank him fast with a quick couple of blasts till he dies.
Poison: Just like the windy in CH except if you get hit, you must go at him hard and fast. Tease him a little by running in and out of the nova range, but be careful not to be hit. Make him chase you instead of the other way around, since his nova travels slower than you can cast a trap, if he stops to fire, lay a trap or two to hit with a quick punch. Use your Web as a means to keep him from stopping and firing in a certain area. However like always, if you get badly poisoned, charge in and hope to get some quick blasts off before he casts up his Fire golem.
Sorceresses: Tele Cold Sorc: Well, if you have that raven, now is the time to use it, since blizzard is the most common skill used by this type, and it is not a spamming skill, you will be getting small windows of hope every few seconds. Tele around with your LS traps like you did in your Tele war duel with a Bone Necromancer, but if you see a blizzard go up, use that moment to tele in and drop a few blasts. Repeat.
Fire Sorc: Duel with a few screens between you guy. Their Fire ball will pack a nice quick death for you if you are not careful. Dodge the first few waves of ball but always keep you LS up. Cast them far off screen in the direction of the sorc if you can. If you think you got them standing still, teleport around them and approach from the rear to drop a few blasts. Don’t go for that long stream of them though, just a quick 1 or 2 and tele off. Lead bombing runs on the sorc until you can finally kill her.
Sorceresses: CH Cold Sorc: Well, this build is your only real sorceress you see in CH on east. The standard blizzard sorc is very painful but not that hard to beat. Cast up a few LS traps and wait for them to run, since blizzard takes a while to cast, you will have a nice moment to be right on top and casting some fire blasts. Use your web to scare them away from the corners that they might try to hide in. However, don’t get caught in the blizzard, or its lights out really fast. Also, wear your Raven frost for this duel.
6.1 Leveling Guide
Well, this is for those duelers who have no time to spare when it comes to making a guy. In CH we have regular enchant runs for a bunch of low level characters to get to high levels quite easily. You will be doing about 3K fire damage with a mid level enchant. So here we go.
Levels 1-12 Enchant kill as you walk to Andy
Levels 12-15 Run Sewers while enchanted
At 15 Equip a Raven Claw
15-21 Run Arcane and Tombs
21-25 Norm cows
~At 25 you have two options~
25-40 Leech normal Baal
25-40 Enchant kill NM cows (works best with more people)
Level 40 rush to nm Baal
Levels 41-65 Leech NM Baal
Level 65 rush to hell ancients
66-Whatever Hell Baal
Well, that’s all folks. My first full guide so odds are I may have left out something, I just hope it’s not something that is so huge that it makes me look bad. This was my first Assassin that ever used traps, so I find her quite fun if you don’t imagine. I hope that many more of you will enjoy this build as much as I do.
Strength: 84 Base (167)
Dexterity: 140 Base (184)
Vitality: 276 Base (295)
Energy 25 Base (54)
7.3 Credits/Thank You
Pansy (For not stealing my Items), Steve (for letting me kill you so much!), Justin, Vic, Kaz, Celine, Sim, Tyr, Skull, Mememe, Biggoron, Cantos, Zabo and the rest of CH.
Thanks to Naliworld for a reason I can’t remember, and all the members who responded to my Guru Threads.
To my old banned sins: Maxus and Mau for showing me flame wars and getting me interested in posting. Weenis, Xenozip, Coffin, Hydro, Doboy, Crazygirl, and others I am probably forgetting.
To Fuzz, Lunatic, Chrys and Mort
And finally, Thanks to Garbad for banning this build, which in turn allowed me to renew my interest in it.
The PvP Fastcast WW/Kick/Stun Assassin - by Speederländer (Part 1 of 8)
PvP Fast-cast WW/Kick/Stun Assassin Guide
This guide focuses on strategy, not items and stats (though I will discuss both). As such it is useful for the build in the title (WW/Kick/Stun), “ghost” style pure WW assassins, “ghost” style pure kickers, BvC barbs (since there are a lot of practical whirlwind pointers), trappers, and anyone else interested in good dueling techniques. It is largely unchanged after the latest patch releases. I have altered some portions of the equipment section to reflect the hellfire charm. These changes are really minimal. It just means a bit more pre-planning, yet another “perfect stat” expensive charm that everyone has to try and get, and added flexibility in stats and the like. Hopefully this guide will have a long and useful life.
Quick List of Acronyms:
AoE - area of effect
AR - attack rating
BS - blade shield
CB - claw block (also WB - weapon block)
CoA - crown of ages
CTA - call to arms
DF - dragon flight
DR - damage reduction (physical)
DT - dragon talon
FHR - fast hit recovery
GC - grand charm
IAS - increased attack speed
KB - knockback
LS - lightning sentry
MB - mind blast
OW - open wounds
PLR - poison length reduction
Res - resistance
SC - small charm
SM - shadow master
WB - weapon block (also CB - claw block)
WW - whirlwind
TABLE OF CONTENTS
2. Build Goals
3. Note on Damage
4. Note on Attack Rating
5. Note on Claw Block
6. Note on Mana
7. Note on Mercs
10. Alternate Equipment Set-up
11. Notes on Armor Choice
12. General Notes on Equipment
13. Anya Bug
14. Attribute Points
15. Notes on Poison Damage
The Double Application Feature
The Hidden Hell PLR
16. Notes on Open Wounds
17. Notes on Speed
18. Chance to Cast and Stun with Dragon Talon
19. General Strategy and Technique Guide
20. General Match-up Notes
21. Class-Variant Strategy Breakdown
Standard Bone Nec Technique
Bone Necs with Minions
Defensive Bone Necs
Poison Nova Necs
Frozen Orb Sorcs
Light Sorc with Conviction Merc
Light Sorc with Conviction Merc and Auto-Aim
Blizzard Sorcs with Auto-Aim
Energy Shield Sorcs
Trapper Type 1: claw-claw
Trapper Type 2: 102 FC, hoto/shield
Trapper with a conviction merc
Fist of Heavens Pally
Fist of Heavens Pally with Smite and Charge
Alternate technique vs. Barbs
This build combines all of the best aspects of the kicker, whirlwind assassin, and trapper in a solid dueling framework. It uses whirlwind and dragon talon for its principal damage dealing skills. It uses teleport for its primary movement with tactical use of dragon flight in on-screen situations. It uses stun supplied by base level traps and level 42 to 50 mind blast, with high level mind blast supplying some damage dealing capacity and finishing capability at a distance of 2+ screens away with continuous cast via name-lock.
This is not a “ghost” ww-sin. It is a ww/kick hybrid. I've been posting bits and pieces of this guide since early in ladder 1, before anyone heard of the name "ghost" attached to a ww-sin. I just happened to be doing it, at that time, with a pure kicker rather than ww assassin. Ladder 2 introduced certain items, like grief, which made pallys and melee generally very difficult. In the ladder 1 time-frame (both on and off the ladder), a tricked out kicker could hold their own in most public dueling games (even if certain melee builds could not be beaten at all). There were so many pure caster types that kickers always had good duels available. But now, there are so many paladins with a massive physical attack along with their ranged attacks (FoH, hammers, etc.), that you simply must have whirlwind. There were a LOT of paladins in ladder 2 (and off the ladder) as items and better, more refined, builds pushed more and more people toward that class. If you kicked only, you did not do well. I went into many 8 person public duel games and had 7 pallys plus myself. However, to go whirlwind only means that you lose the benefit of an extremely accurate and powerful tool against casters by forgoing kick. No matter what anyone says, kicking is the superior attack against sorcs, wind druids, necromancers, etc. You need both attacks, kicking (mostly) for casters and ww (mostly) for melee and pally casters. This doesn’t mean I exclusively use kicks against necros, for example. It just means that kicks are my primary attack against certain classes. This is discussed in the strategy section below. WW + kick gives you a huge range of options in the heat of a duel. It is superior to a pure ww (whether ghost or otherwise) or any type of pure kicker. Finally, you don’t need that big a skill point investment to make kicking effective, as I will outline below. There is no good reason NOT to have dragon talon as a skill!
In my opinion, this is the best PvP assassin type you can play for 1 vs. 1 duels when you are decked out. It’s better 1 on 1 than a trapper, though a trapper is better in a team. I also consider this the single most demanding PvP build you can play. I’ve played just about every style of dueler out there at one time or another going back to the beta. Nothing has come close, in my mind, to the complexity of making this build function well. As a result, I find it endlessly interesting and fun. Much more so than playing a trapper or a bone nec or a smiter or a ww barb or any type of sorc. 99% of time you will be the aggressor and will be chasing your opponent. It's always more fun to play offensively than defensively. It also takes MUCH more skill to be a good offensive player. Anyone can run and spam their attack.
Most of this guide is about tactics and strategy. Items are items and we all know how important they are. I assume the people who go to the trouble of reading PvP strategy guides have decent items or access to such items or are willing to work to get such items. Once we are on this semi-level playing field, we can focus on technique. Good items (or at least decent ones) are critical but you can't simply spend your way to winning with this dueler. They are necessary but NOT sufficient to do well.
This guide assumes you have familiarity with assassins. If you have never played a ww sin before, or a kicker, or at least a trapper, don’t start here. You’ll become frustrated. Play the more common variants first. Get good at kickers, then try WW, and then perhaps some trapping. That will get you the basics for making this build work for you. Note that I’m not posting all the hit recovery, fast cast rate or ias charts as some other guides do. If you’ve never had to look them up before or you don’t know that trapping is tied to ias and mind blast is tied to fast cast rate, then this isn’t the guide you should be looking at.
This guide is built with the philosophy of doing as FEW equipment changes as possible. When I do a public dueling game (or just about any dueling game, for that matter), I want to put on my primary equipment for that game, based on the mix of players, and be able to do well w/o having to run to my stash for new equipment every time I duel someone different. Other than the occasional AR gear switch or T'Gods/Jade Talon switch, I have tried to minimize required changes. Almost all of the people who duel end up doing mostly public games, since there just aren't any big private groups left. In a public game, you can have free-for-alls, teams, and people who just jump you when you are weak after dueling someone else. You also have random traps and hits from people not even trying to hit you. If you are equipped to "duel melee", then some sorc is going to swing through and kill you due to low res, etc. If you are equipped with all your res gear and some pally decides to take a swipe, you want full DR. Having to run to your stash to switch equipment on a per-duel basis is both unrealistic and, in the end, pretty annoying. It's just like people saying they will pre-buff their venom with bramble, 3/3 claws, a shadow ammy, etc. After a couple of times it just gets old, fast. For a tourney, if it's allowed, then do it for sure. Otherwise, forget it. I want to be in a dueling game, kill a sorc, pop over and wax that necro that was observing, avoid (or kill) the smiter trying to slap me when I'm almost dead, and then still take out the annoying zon who hit me with a multishot 2 minutes ago while I was dueling the sorc. All without switching anything. I'm not saying you won't do equipment changes with my build, just that you won't do them all that often.
This build is not cheap. Further, it is complex to play and hard to master, especially with the timing of attacks and hotkey use. I will provide cheap(er) alternatives to expensive equipment whenever possible, but the use of high level rune words, certain expensive equipment, and decent charms is a must. There is no way around it. You also won't “own" a week after you make your assassin. I've played this build, or a variation on it, over two ladders now (both on and off the ladder), always improving it. I played trappers for a year or more prior to 1.10. If you aren't willing to put in the time practicing and getting better, and losing in the beginning, you'll quit in frustration. I’ve even quit myself a few times.
Finally, this is a major twitch build. It requires good reflexes and a decent connection. If you lack either, you will probably have trouble making it work for you.
BUILD GOALS (numbers that we MUST hit)
1. 7/3 kick speed with either 3 or 4 kicks in a talon sequence (after battle command from CTA)
2. Final breakpoint whirlwind speed of 4 frames with all claws
3. 9 frame trap laying speed
4. 65 fast-cast breakpoint for teleport and mind blast (except when wearing some res/absorb equipment)
5. High open wounds when need demands (achieved through fury claw)
6. Massive venom damage (lvl 40 to 50 venom)
7. Largely a vitality build, to the extent possible (i.e. do NOT pump dex or str for AR or damage)
8. 60% claw block (with battle command active)
9. Max resistance in hell BEFORE the Anya quest (i.e. 75 resist all in hell not including Anya)
10. 86 FHR break point when needed without loss of other important stats (You don’t always need 86 FHR, but you need to always be able to get it)
11. 50% physical damage reduction at all times (with battle command active)
12. Enough mana to allow fairly continuous teleport, trapping, mind blasting, and whirlwinding
13. Enough attack rating to hit well (see below)
These goals help us to define equipment as well as skill and stat point distribution. Look again at these goals. These are the numbers you have to hit. These are the heart of the build.
NOTE ON DAMAGE:
With the set-up I provide, your goal should be lvl 40+ venom. This is critical. In fact, level 40 is really too low. I had level 48 to 50 venom with my final assassin.
Your kick damage does not show the venom addition. Your listed screen damage will be in the 950 to 1K kick range on the max damage end. This number doesn’t matter. Everyone ends up with roughly the same number.
Your WW damage (and your kick damage) is simply a combo of your physical damage, venom, magic damage, and any other sources. Again, everyone is roughly the same here. Don’t try to design around small increments in kick or WW physical damage. Focus on the goals above. The damage will sort itself out and is focused on your venom damage.
Also, crushing blow is overrated. Don’t go out of your way to get it. In fact, I play with ZERO crushing blow. If you have some off-the-wall piece of equipment that has it, fine. But NEVER design around trying to get it. The numbers on CB, when you really break it down, don’t add up to whatever it may cost you. Crushing blow is critical for PvM. Feel free to have CB equipment for leveling. Just don’t think you should use it for PvP, no matter what some critics may claim. These numbers have been run IN DETAIL by several people who spent a great deal of time on it, including myself. CB is not a mod to sacrifice anything for.
NOTE ON ATTACK RATING (see also equipment section below):
You want your WW attack rating in the 5000+ range and your kick attack rating somewhere over 5K as well. This allows you to hit all but high defense characters. Via good whirl-away you can also hit many high defense characters. When you run, the to-hit equation is ignored, so a 5K AR attack behaves like smite. This means those pallys with 30K defense might as well have ZERO when they are running/charging for all the good it does them. This allows a lower AR character to actually hit, especially with whirlwind.
5K AR doesn’t always cut it however. Normally, against high defense pallys and the occasional barb, I will wear my fools mod claw. This should get you in the 10K to 11K range (give or take). This is enough to hit non-defense specialists.
Fools claw plus angelics gets you in the 19K to 20K or better attack rating range. Combined with whirl-away, this allows you to hit any melee out there. Note that if you wear angelics you have greatly limited mobility (due to slower teleport cast rate). Usually you should only do this if you can get 1 vs. 1 duels w/o interference or if everyone you are dueling is primarily melee. Your resistance is also going to be low. A lot of people in pubbies will pounce you when you are set to specifically duel someone else with constraining equipment changes.
Don’t ever pump dex in order to get AR. I’ve tried it before. It really is of minimal help and costs you a load of life. You should end up with 115 dex (runic talon requirement) fully equipped, barring minor extra equipment stats like dexterity on rings, claws, etc.
Don’t stress about AR. I used to really worry about it. You don’t have to. Get it in the 5K range, keep some AR gear for certain match-ups, and forget about it. You won’t be able to PvM very much, but then this isn’t a PvM character. If you have 5K AR and you feel like you aren’t hitting, take a close look at your technique before you go altering things to punch up your attack rating.
NOTE ON CLAW BLOCK
Claw block does not check when you run; no to-hit check, no blocking. This is a fact. All attacks against you are auto-hit if they have proximity. Some people have trouble believing it, many people aren’t aware of it. But it’s true. Claw block is at full value when you teleport and when you attack and when you have WW active. This is mentioned again in the general strategy section.
NOTE ON MANA
My assassin has anywhere from 775 to 830 mana, depending on my set-up and final character level. This is plenty for 98% of my duels. Most people, however, will not have the mana levels I get.
I recommend using mana pots. This recommendation will annoy some people, people who feel that there is an imaginary set of rules binding all people who do PvP. People will claim that using mana pots is “BM”. There is no such thing as “BM”. Be polite. Try to have fun duels. This means for both you and the person dueling you. That’s all there is to “mannered” dueling.
If you play in a league, and the league bans mana pots, then don’t use them. I don’t advocate breaking any rules or cheating in any way. However, 99% of the dueling in 1.10 occurs in pubs now. And in pubs, almost everyone uses mana pots. Indeed, certain builds like wind druids REQUIRE mana pots. I assume that everyone uses them. It just makes things easier. If you think that madly teleporting WW barb, windy or bone nec isn’t dropping mana, think again.
In any event, you need to get your mana in the 600+ range to really have any shot at beating good casters.
NOTE: I do NOT advocate using life pots or rejuvs. Even when people use them against me my personal policy is not to use them. About the only universal rules that people SORT of agree on are with respect to life potting, NKing and guarding. Even these rules aren’t universal, as there are plenty of clans that play “BM” among themselves because they seem to enjoy it. I’m not here to judge anyone. My personal policy is not to life pot or rejuv.
I tend to carry mana pots but I rarely have to use them. My build does NOT require mana pots. But you had better be prepared to shell out for charms if you don’t want to use them.
>>>>>>I say again: This build does NOT require mana pots.
NOTE ON MERCS
I never use mercs so I have no advice here. My personal opinion is that people who use mercs in PvP often lack the skill to duel well without them (though not always). They are expensive to resurrect, you eventually can’t depend on them (when you run out of cash to res), meaning you have to switch tactics and they are a crutch, promoting sloppy technique. If you want one, then go for it. I won’t recommend it for any PvP, however. You have one of the best mercs in the game, your recastable shadow master. Use it.
The PvP Fastcast WW/Kick/Stun Assassin - by Speederländer (Part 2 of 8)
The skill set pretty well establishes itself:
------------------------------------- Dragon Talon – enough points to get talon to level 17 or 23 with equipment and battle command from CTA
Claw Mastery – 20
Venom – 20
Mind blast – 20
Fade – enough points to get 50% physical damage reduction with equipment and battle command (1 pt. fade = 1% physical damage reduction – Don’t forget to cast fade from your CTA/spirit/lidless switch to get 3 extra levels. The DR bonus from fade is not limited to hard points spent. Plus skill items also count to this bonus. So level 40 total fade gives you 40% DR.)
Weapon block – enough to get 60% block with equipment and battle command (don’t waste points trying to get higher than 60% block)
Shadow Master – 1
Dragon Flight – 1 (with remainder of points going here after other skills are set)
Wake of Fire – 1
Lightning Sentry – 1
Blade Shield – 1 (Optional. Do everything in your power to get this as a mod on your chaos claw, the claw you will wear most often.)
In order to get all these skills, you will have to have a high character level.
Pump mind blast last when leveling, if you aren’t power leveling to 90+ in a couple days. I’ve always leveled over a weekend and so pretty much hit 90 a couple of days after I start, meaning all my skills are largely in place right away. Prepare to get rushed and to leech. You can’t equip much of anything until high levels (i.e. when your anni is available, etc.).
I say to drop any extra skill points (once everything else is done) into dragon flight due to its critical importance against fast sorcs. This is discussed below in more detail, but against really good sorcs, you will largely be teleporting to get on their screen and then using DF to get on top of them with minion stack, deliver OW, and hopefully pause them for a brief instant to initiate a quick kick sequence. I advise to NOT drop extra points in shadow master. The master is a one-point wonder. A few extra points don’t give it any major life boost and you will end up recasting her all the time anyway. I think it’s better to squeeze another 1K or so AR and extra damage out of flight. But do as you like in this regard.
NOTE: You MUST get to as high a character level as possible, preferably to about clvl 94 or so. You want to improve your OW damage, improve your chance to hit, and reduce your chances of being hit. Clvl 94 is the point after which leveling is really a pain and so tends to be my personal limit.
Introduction to equipment section
There is a reason I started this guide with a list of Desired Goals. This allows people to directly break from any item I recommend below. As long as you meet the goals and break points I have listed, then you're set. Personally, I would prefer to not list ANY gear, other than duel specific gear changes; allowing people to create their own combos. As long as you can hit the marks, then great. My focus with this guide is the strategy. I feel that even with (slightly) substandard gear, a good dueler, using the strats and tactics I outline below, can have success.
The equipment I list below is basically what I use. So if you are trying to copy my build point for point, here you go.
Helm: Crown of Ages – Yes, it can be expensive, but if you get a 2 socket with mediocre DR and res, you can get by. You need this helm for the combo of FHR, res, damage reduction, and 2 sockets. You need to upgrade this to as close to perfect as you can afford. You spend a lot of stat points to be able to wear this. Don’t let them go to waste. Punch up the res LAST. Get 2 sockets and 15 DR first.
Socketing: For the poor, use a pair of 15 ias jewels with the best res mod you can swing. For the well-off, use a pair of 15 ias/15 res all jewels.
Armor: Enigma – This is the only possible armor for this build. Get the highest defense you can, while still being able to equip it w/o spending ANY strength points just for the enigma itself. Does it REALLY matter if you have a 500 defense difference? No. But if you’re a stat fetishist, feel free to indulge yourself.
NOTE: with 20 str base, 20 str from the anni, 20 str from the hellfire and 40 strength (for example) invested to get to the point where you can wear a CoA, you have 100 strength to play with for choosing your enigma armor. Don’t pick a heavy armor that slows your movement. These numbers are examples only. Do your OWN calculations!!
Belt: Arachnid mesh – Again, this is the only possible primary belt for this build. You will occasionally switch it for T’gods or an OW belt. (See below.)
Boots: Shadow Dancers (get the best stats you can initially so you can minimize later rebuilds). If you get low stat dancers, you have to let skill and/or attribute points go to waste later when you upgrade them. Try for 2/25 dancers right off the bat.
Rings: Ring 1 – Raven frost (the dex is built in, you can’t take it off). Make sure it’s 20 dex. Ring 2 – Fast cast ring with mana, attack rating, resist all. Stats like str are pointless. You need to be able to take the ring off and switch it for a wisp, angelic, etc. Dex can be OK as a substitute for AR, but just don’t build it into your assassin.
Fast cast ammy with 15 to 20 fast cast. Look for assassin skills and resist all as your two primary mods after the FCR. Stats, again, don’t help much since you cannot build them in. Mana is good. AR boost is good. Etc.
IF you decide to use a fools claw ONLY, and never to use angelics at all, then you can build your ammy in (i.e. never take it off). In this case, try to find an ammy with a high strength and/or dex boost. Use this ultimately to boost your life via attribute point savings.
Gloves: Trangs gloves
9x shadow skill GCs with life
1x assassin hellfire
10x life/mana sc
Claws (I keep one of each):
1. Chaos Runic Talon (Get venom and mind blast mods first, then go for dragon flight or bladeshield)
2. Fury Runic Talon (Get venom and mind blast mods first, then go for dragon flight or bladeshield)
3. Jade Talon with 15 ias jewel (You need the 15 ias jewel to get the 4 frame break on ww with the Jade. Try to get 15 ias/15 res-all or 15 ias/30 light res for the jewel)
4. Fools mod rare fast claw. Generally socket with UM or IAS depending on whether you need to get the last WW breakpoint or open wounds.
Note on the fools mod claw: Knockback is REALLY nice to have against melee pallys. Seriously try to get a fools mod claw with a KB auto-mod. I know that is very hard. If you can’t get this, then try a NEF in the claw and see what you think. You can always unsocket it if you don’t see a benefit. My personal view is that KB is absolutely critical.
NOTE: Do NOT get claws with skills you can’t do without, like weapon block. If you have weapon block on your fury and you designed around those WB points, and you change the fury for a fools mod claw that doesn’t have equal WB, you will lose a claw block break point. Always go for venom first then mind blast. After that I prefer one claw with as much to dragon flight as possible and one claw with a point or two in blade shield.
Primary skills on claws: venom number 1, mind blast number 2
Secondary skills on claws: blade shield and dragon flight, in whatever order you like. I prefer the blade shield on my chaos, since I almost always wear my chaos.
CTA and spirit (on ladder) or lidless wall.
You must have a CTA. This is so critical I can’t emphasize it enough. You need the life AND the mana boost it provides. I say again, you MUST have a CTA.
ALTERNATE EQUIPMENT SET-UP:
Here is a different approach to doing your equipment that works as well as (or better than) the CoA route.
Helm: +3 shadow circlet with 20 fast cast and 2 open sockets (socket with 15 ias/15 res all jewels)
Ammy: 30 res maras.
This allows you to get up to lvl 50 field-castable venom and mind blast
You will have to pump points into fade to make up the DR.
You will likely need to pick up resistance via some 5% res all scs with life (not many though)
You need to make up some FHR via switch-out on 2 GCs plus a SC.
Note you save strength from the CoA. Don’t build around the stats on the mara unless you don’t plan on ever using angelics. If you think a fool’s claw is enough for AR, then use the 5 str and 5 dex on the maras to get more life.
This was my final set-up on my last assassin. I moved away from the CoA/caster ammy at the end. Both versions are very good. I just liked having the extra shadow skills. Also, the helm wasn’t as hard to get as it would first seem. This alternate set-up is easier to put together than a nearly perfect CoA + nearly perfect caster ammy.
I don’t claim one is better than the other. Make up your OWN mind as to which you prefer, if you prefer either. I list all the needed goals so you can invent your OWN design. Be creative. Just make sure you hit the numbers.
Also in Stash:
2x shadow skill w/FHR
1x fhr sc with mana or attack rating
Angelic ring and ammy
Dwarf star ring
20 absorb Wisp ring (or the best absorb you can swing)
9% or 10% OW belt with big life mod and other good stats (resistance, etc.)
Cold resistance over-stacking gear (see below) for auto-aiming blizzard sorcs (optional)
NOTES ON ARMOR CHOICE
Question: Why do I use enigma and not bramble or fortitude?
Short answer: Because that’s the build.
Longer Answer: There is no one you can kill with bramble or fortitude that you can't kill with enigma. But there are MANY people you can kill with enigma and fast cast that you CANNOT kill without it.
Also, fortitude is a poor armor generally for ww-sins. If you want a high physical damage whirlwind, make a barb.
This build is all about mobility. Mobility is critical to beating any casters that are halfway decent. Without good mobility they will always have a huge advantage over you. Mobility also helps greatly against several melee types.
Last, when you run, your claw block drops to zero. Therefore, by moving via teleport, you maintain max block at all times. It’s hard to come up with a better reason for using enigma than that.
GENERAL NOTES ON EQUIPMENT
I consider the CoA/Dancer combo to be superior to most 1.08 Valk combos. People are free to disagree.
In any event, my set-up is universal. It can be played on or off-ladder. A Valk build does not allow this.
I am also not recommending any specific pre-1.10 rares. A given (duped) rare on USWest non-ladder, for example, is not available anywhere else, making the guide non-universal if I would recommend it.
I am sure that there are certain insanely good rares and/or crafted items (legit or otherwise) that may beat the gear I am recommending. I say go find that great and hard-to-find stuff and use it. This is why I provide general goals. Feel free to customize as much as you like.
The resistance provided by the Anya quest in act 5 will go away if you die in a game and don’t leave the game and return. Since leaving and returning after every death is annoying and often means you won’t be able to get back in the game, make sure you have max res in hell plus a little stack for dealing with facet lower resist without Anya. I say again, do NOT include the Anya resistance into any of your calculations.
You will have just enough strength to wear the CoA. WAIT until the highest possible level to put the last points into strength. Your enigma will keep giving you str as you level up. I waited until I was level 92 on my most recent build before I had the str to wear it. If I rebuild, I would try to leech my way to as high as lvl 94 before I could equip. Just wear a T’Gods in the meantime for a strength boost. This will allow you to equip everything without resorting to strength charms and help you to survive in Baal runs.
You will have 115 dexterity with items. Enough for the runic talons. Be careful to equip all strength items first, i.e. shadow dancers, in order to get the dex boost. Everything else goes to vitality.
My assassin sports anywhere from 3600 life to 4000 life, depending on which equipment I am wearing. My typical life is about 3800 in standard gear, 4K in melee only gear.
Again, don’t pump dex for attack rating!!
NOTES ON POISON DAMAGE
Poison (i.e. venom in our case) has several features that make it very desirable for our assassin.
First: the double application bug/feature
When +% skill mods are applied, they act once when venom is cast, and then again when it is applied.
Level 45 venom = 1260 average damage over .4 seconds
When cast with trangs gloves, this becomes: 1260 x 1.25 = 1575 over .4 sec.
When you attack someone, the trangs bonus acts AGAIN on this new total yielding: 1968 over .4 sec.
So the bonus actually acts on itself. Nice for us.
Second: The hidden hell PLR penalty
There is a -100% poison length reduction penalty in hell. I am NOT talking about the -100% to your resistance! That is a different penalty. I assume dueling is happening in hell. All poison sources act on you at their full strength for twice the listed period when playing in hell.
Going back to our example:
1968 venom damage over .4 seconds becomes 3937 over .8 seconds.
That is just a LOT of damage over .8 seconds folks. After the PvP penalty, it's 656 real PvP damage over .8 seconds (basically per application). Combine this with your physical damage, magic damage from chaos, and open wounds, and it's really nice damage. When you kick, you basically have your target continuously poisoned at the rate of 820 pvp poison damage per second (not considering resistance damage reduction).
Further, this poison damage (as well as your OW and magic damage) goes through bone armor, energy shield and cyclone armor directly. Very few people care too much about poison. There aren’t many people who use it in mass quantities anymore except poison jav zons and poison nova necs. Most people figure they will pop an antidote or run to town if heavily poisoned. Therefore, it is the most commonly neglected resistance. Your poison acts so fast that many people don’t even realize the extent of the poison damage they are taking. They assume it’s something else killing them. If they ask, don’t tell.
I don't pre-buff poison. Some people do. If you want to keep +3 shadow/+3 venom claws with 2 psn facets each, a +3 shadow helm with 2 facets, +3 shadow ammy, and 2 SOJs, go for it. I think it's a huge pain. Try to get strength on the ammy and helm. I had an ammy with +3 shadow and 29 str last ladder and a helm with 20 str or thereabouts so I could equip bramble for pre-buff while still keeping my str investment intact from the enigma. And after all that effort (and expense!!) to get all that stuff, I'll bet I pre-buffed maybe 3 times over the course of the season. You can kill just fine w/o pre-buffing. Once I go out, I don’t like to come back to town except for healing after a duel or to put on AR equipment for melee or a jade for stacked res. If you pre-buff, you also have to carefully watch your durations, as you can’t just recast venom out in the field every time you recast BO. You have to wait until you return to town. Personally, I like to cast venom and fade every time I cast battle orders. This way there is no fear of it running out. If you pre-buff, get a stopwatch or a regular watch with a stopwatch feature and hit it every time you pre-buff your venom. If you don’t have something to remind you other than that easily forgotten, barely visible, venom aura around you, you will end up doing half of your duels without venom on.
Finally, don’t ever use poison damage charms as venom renders them useless.
NOTES ON OPEN WOUNDS
The following information is directly from the Arreat Summit website (link included below):
Open Wounds Duration: 200 frames (that is 8 seconds).
The damage per frame seems to be the following (where Clvl is the attackers level, that is the player's level usually):
If you prefer per second, just multiply by 25:
Clvl 10: 11.8 per sec over 8 seconds for a total of 94.5 damage. Clvl 30: 42.6 per sec over 8 seconds for a total of 340.6 damage. Clvl 50: 99.7 per sec over 8 seconds for a total of 797.7 damage. Clvl 70: 178.8 per sec over 8 seconds for a total of 1430.5 damage. Clvl 90: 266.7 per sec over 8 seconds for a total of 2133.6 damage.
Also, the damage is divided by 4 for a player target. In addition, for a missile versus a player target one should divide the damage by 8 instead.
It is possible to get up to 100% chance for Open Wounds. Anything above 100% is discarded.