An interesting thread in the Demon Hunter forum asks which DH passives should be "baked in" to the character, basically making them full time abilities. The whole thing was spurred by a blue post about Monks, so I'm surprised not to see some conversation about it here:
The most commonly proposed solution is to simply bake One With Everything directly into the Monk's class. In essence, give the passive away for free. This has a few issues. We don't currently bake a mechanic like this into other classes, so it would be something that’d need to be explained to new players or otherwise exist as a hidden bonus. It also represents a big boost to one class that's inequitable with the other classes.
I don't really like that idea, and don't really think OWE is a big problem with the Monk. So there's one almost mandatory passive; oh well. Pretty much every class has one passive that virtually everyone uses, and the Monk needs high resistance more than any other class, so giving him one passive that allows it (with a fairly clever function) isn't a bad thing, IMHO.
I liked the other suggestion Blizzard offered; that they might segment OWE out, and put the Arcane on one of the unused passives, lightning on another, poison on a 3rd, etc. That's weird and unnatural, but it's kind of cool at the same time. It wouldn't help many of us now, as anyone with a high level Monk has 4 or 5 items with +res to one particular element and isn't likely to rework all their gear to change that around. (Though I've been tempted, since by far my best item is my Amulet, a great quadfecta with +58 cold res that does nothing for me since I built my Monk around arcane months before I found the amulet.)
That said, other passives. The main request I see is for an offensive passive for the Monk. Look at some of the Barb passives; any of them would be fantastic for Monks. Hell, any new Monk passive that did half of these would instantly be a must-have for most Monks:
Brawler is a funny case, since it's used by just 4% of Barbs, but would be fantastic top 3 passive for Monks, since we get surrounded and tank, while Barbs just spin past everything. It would still be a great passive for barbs, except they have 4 others that are much better.
And sure, Monks get buffs to res and defense and dodge and such while Barbs get the DPS boosts. But since in D3 high DPS cures all, and it's easier to get defense and res than DPS from equipment, it's not quite the same.
Try flipping the script; would Barbs immediately think OWE was their best passive if it was available? Or Resolve? Maybe Fleet Footed, except that Barbs get a much better version via Sprint, and it deals half their damage in the process.
So anyway, for the monk's passives... what do you want changed? New passive? Combine some of the unused ones?
Passive Skills for Monk in Softcore Pos Skill Percent 1 One With Everything(Passive) 74.66% 2 Seize the Initiative(Passive) 66.02% 3 The Guardian's Path(Passive) 28.97% 4 Fleet Footed(Passive) 22.66% 5 Exalted Soul(Passive) 22.34% 6 Chant of Resonance(Passive) 20.88% 7 Resolve(Passive) 19.84% 8 Transcendence(Passive) 13.29% 9 Combination Strike(Passive) 8.47% 10 Near Death Experience(Passive) 7.43% 11 Beacon of Ytar(Passive) 6.97% 12 Sixth Sense(Passive) 3.72% 13 Pacifism(Passive) 3.10% 14 Guiding Light(Passive) 1.53%
Monk's got some decent variety; obviously 2 are by far the most popular, but a bunch are medium-popular, and I change around my Monk passives fairly often, depending on if I'm farming with TR or grinding higher MP for keys or organs, or just sometimes playing higher MP level in an MP game. (TR sucks in a party game since you just leave everyone behind.)
Looking at the unloved 3: Guiding Light is a weird case of overspecialized and only useful in MP, so disregard that. But Pacifism and Sixth Sense could be easily improved. What if Pacifism had say, 50% damage boost (and +movement speed?) for like 3s or 5s after you were snared? And what if Sixth Sense just flipped the bonus; boosting your CC by some % of your Dodge? Or did both at once? What if the multiple spirit regen passives were linked, or combined into one? Or added some proc, triggering more spirit regen with crits, or with successful dodged attacks?
In theory passives boost other stuff your char is doing, but they should/could also enable some different or new techniques. And the Monk doesn't have much of that, other than spirit regen boosters. So I think there's room for improvement.
Similar threads are now running for all five classes: Barbarian Passives, Wizard Passives, Witch Doctor Passives, Demon Hunter Passives.