Hey guys, I have been working on a strafezon build for hc pure pvm play, and I am nearing a conclusion on where I plan to go with it, I just need some advice/critique in case I missed any major (well, actually minor, obscure) points. Instead of writing a major post going into every detail (edit: I ended up making it a lot longer than I intended to, disregard this ), let me just list my build goals, gear setup, and final stats. With your advice, I plan to build the character, and then who knows, maybe write an actual guide for hc strafezon play (I was unable to find any updated ones myself). I will list some relevant considerations, but rather than get into a full-on strafezon theory discussion, I would like to stick to my specific build. Build goals, simplified: Fastest ias breakpoint (9/3, http://www.theamazonbasin.com/d2/forums/index.php?showtopic=77351). Strong physical damage on hell (Biggest issue). Strong survivability (Made up of FHR breakpoints, flat out hp, and resists). So here goes, hc pvm strafezon: Stats: enough str/dex for gear, rest into vit. Skill highlights: 20 pierce, 20 strafe, rest is irrelevant/up to taste for now. Gear: Faith GMB. Cats Eye. Dungos. Fortitude. 20 IAS gloves (still undecided on which kind, LOH is a cheap option, but 20ias is a must, crafted ones with knockback would be ideal I guess). Waterwalks. Kira's (15 ias jewel). Dual leech ring. Free ring (Irrelevant to breakpoints, can be anything). 2x Grand charm 12% fhr. Merc: I was thinking of getting might + concentration on him at some point, but that is pretty far down the line, since I am the one using faith, he is pretty irrelevant to my gear setup. (However he is built, he is just a bonus, and not a cornerstone) I actually have no idea if those two auras work with ranged attacks. So, this gets me: Non-100% pierce. 86-88 IAS (9/3 breakpoint with GMB). 54 FHR (6 frame). 120-145 allres (With Anya). Cannot be frozen. Dual leech. +70-80 vit, depending on dungo roll (dex from waterwalks and cats eye translate into vit). Damage X (I really have no idea where my relative damage will end up, that is the one major make or break part of this build as far as i am concerned). A spattering of other stats that add up, but arent really major deals by themselves. So do i meet my build goals? Maxing resists should be doable with charms, and is definitely doable with anni/torch somewhere down the line. I got my desired 9/3 breakpoint, and between dungo, free ring, and somewhat free glove stats, my health pool should be in comfortable spot. I am guessing my damage will be strong, but only putting it into practice will tell. I dont want to get into the whole razortail debate, suffice it to say I would rather have the defensive value of dungos. Four major considerations I made, besides razortail (I went through a lot of setups): Atmas scarab My first draft was using this, because i wanted to break immunities. Problem is, it is way too limiting, and if i absolutely had to, i could just put it on every time i meet phys immunes. (I would hate to do that, but its better than skimping somewhere important) Matriarchal bow The more setups I looked at, the more i realized that the advantage of wsm -10 is not that big. The difference in breakpoints is 37% with the mat. bow, compared to 80% with GMB. This is taken care of with 2 items, 20 IAS amu, and 20 IAS gloves, so it becomes a matter of: Mat. bow frees up the glove and amu slot, but then you need to find 10 IAS elsewhere, to reach the 37% breakpoint (fana gives 31-33 IAS). Another source of IAS is the helmet, but I want the FHR and allres from Kiras; If you wanted to, you could go bloodfist, which takes care of the mat. bow IAS breakpoint, and FHR issues, freeing up the helmet slot (But then what are you gonna do with it? offensively it has no value since you already have the highest breakpoint, and defensively, Kiras is a very strong option). In any case, as far as glove alternatives go, if you arent getting IAS from them, they are just that, IAS gloves without IAS, not a whole lot more effective (unless you get ungodly rolls I guess, I dont really know), though there are cool options. For amulets, Atmas or an allres ammy are the only choices left I would say. To summarise: Mat. bow = Potentially better gloves (you get another open suffix on rare gloves), otherwise exact same advantages are relevant. Mat. bow = Allres ammy or Atmas, Atmas being the clear winner of the two in my mind, in other words = amp damage GMB = Gloves must have 20 IAS (leaves out a lot of uniques) GMB = Amulet or helm must have 20 IAS, getting it on helmet means you want to keep Atmas scarab, in which case you will be severely lacking in resistances. Other relevant mentions that I think will simply end up inferior, but can achieve the mat. bow IAS breakpoint, are: Stealskull (Frees up a ring slot, but means to must get raven frost, so you basically end up with less fhr, much less allres, and a lower damage bow, on the other hand, you get Atmas, and more glove freedom), Nosferatus (Simply not good enough to justify the loss of razortail, imo), Natalyas helmet socketed with 15 IAS jewel (This was my initial plan, but this is a purely defensive helmet (stats translate into vit), that is simply worse than Kiras, and does not free up a ring slot). Faith on merc Major difference is that you can use windforce, but strictly speaking, I think might + concentration would be more effective. There are other differences as well, but if you are just doing it for the attack speed, a shael rune in windforce would do the exact same trick. Raven frost An extremely effective ring slot, and I didnt exclude it for any particular reason, but simply because I want the defensive stats from Kiras, and it happens to have CBF as well. At this point I am pretty certain I havent missed anything, and that survival is solid. Problem is, I have no idea how damage will perform, time will tell Also I am very tired, so I probably made mistakes that I have no idea I made Lastly, I suppose my reason behind this post is a bit vague; to put it simply, its in the title, I am trying to optimize this strafezon build for hc play, and I am looking for glaring inefficencies (Straight upgrades etc.), in other words, your critique! Anyways I ended up making this post a lot longer than intended to, thanks for reading!