Latest Diablo 3 News
DiabloWiki Updates
Support the site! Become a Diablo: IncGamers PAL - Remove ads and more!

Help me make a bulletproof merc.

Discussion in 'Sorceress' started by Clervis, Apr 9, 2012. | Replies: 16 | Views: 3767

  1. Clervis

    Clervis IncGamers Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2006
    Messages:
    1,393
    Likes Received:
    38
    Trophy Points:
    469
    Help me make a bulletproof merc.

    I hate when my Act 2 merc kicks the bucket. And he makes that wimpy gyah! noise when he does, too! What do you guys use to make your mercs more hearty. My plan is as follows:

    Eth Thresher Infinity (required)
    Eth Upped Guardian Angel (Um)
    Eth Vamp Gaze (Um)

    The problem is that even at lvl 98 he's only got 89% Resist All, let alone lvl 89 where I am now. Plus he's gotta have LL to get along. Maybe I'll keep him with an Um'ed Tal's Helm. So the question is: Given an Act II Defiance Merc is using Infinity, what's the best gear purely to keep him alive?
  2. zaphodbrx

    zaphodbrx IncGamers Member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2011
    Messages:
    3,714
    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    467
    Re: Help me make a bulletproof merc.

    I don't think guardian angel helps very much. I use ebug duress and he does fine.
    Vampire gaze is better than Tals, imo, because of damage reduce.
    Just teleport him out of the way and feed him a rejuv now and then and he'll be fine.
  3. magicrectangle

    magicrectangle IncGamers Member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2010
    Messages:
    2,548
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    166
    Re: Help me make a bulletproof merc.

    If you're going to use a defiance merc you might as well get the most out of it by using a high defense ebug armor. Ebug fortitude will give him tons of defense, and the 300% ed will make him leech more. IME the only place I've ever really wanted more than 75 res all on my merc is travi (but strategic teleporting and the occasional rejuv keeps him up there, too). The res all on fortitude should also let you use a 15% IAS jewel in gaze, increasing the amount of life he leeches further by putting him up a breakpoint.
  4. Clervis

    Clervis IncGamers Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2006
    Messages:
    1,393
    Likes Received:
    38
    Trophy Points:
    469
    Re: Help me make a bulletproof merc.

    The thing is, I'm using him for a Bearsorc so strategic teleporting isn't an option. From what I've seen, he's died from elemental damage most of the time, hence why I wanted GA. With Defiance & a 23xx GA, he should be hitting about 12K defense. I'm not sure how many less hits he'd take with an extra 1000 or so def, given diminishing returns, but, like I said, I thing his problem is mainly elemental in nature.
  5. hubb

    hubb IncGamers Member

    Joined:
    May 27, 2009
    Messages:
    2,251
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    120
    Re: Help me make a bulletproof merc.

    It's always a good idea to give that type of information up front as there's usually no setup that's "best" in any given situation. But you already know this :)

    I've never needed to try GA myself, but it's not an uncommon setup so it's seems the best way to go if your probs are elemental (I'd def use the Tal mask in this case). As being frozen is ofc fairly crippling you can also try CBF. A decent setup for this is G-bane + Vamp Gaze, which'll also net him 25-35 MDR (or you could stick Cham in something). Alternatively you can increase how much he leeches by giving him CoH (8%LL and some ED against most things) or Fort (300ED).
  6. TheWorkingBoor

    TheWorkingBoor IncGamers Member

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2012
    Messages:
    72
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    26
    Re: Help me make a bulletproof merc.

    Which particular elemental damage is the one killing him? I'm guessing it's lightning damage, or possibly poison or fire. Cold is doubtful, but maybe... The reason I mention this is that there are a few items that might be overlooked - items with absorb to a particular type of elemental damage. Even if the amount of absorb looks pretty small, it can have a pretty significant effect.

    For example, my Chaos Sanctuary runner (hammerdin) uses an Act3 merc with a Ral'ed SteelShade (/w Vipermagi, Stormshield, & Azurewrath), which really pushed him over the top for tanking Venom Lords. He almost never dies during runs now, while before he did have some problems (he's just there for the Sanctuary aura & freezing monsters solid, so I don't care about his power).

    For cold absorb there's Nightwings Veil too. But in particular, for lightning damage, there's Blackhorns Face (+20 lightning absorb). Blackhorns 20% slows target is a nice bonus too.

    The problem with each of these is that they don't provide life leech, which only leaves your armor slot for that mod (if you want to keep the Infinity). Chains of Honor is certainly a good choice, but otherwise you're quite limited on life-leech/armor items.

    If it's poison damage, from my experience there isn't as solid of an option for ensuring his survival. Certain monsters will still tear him up sometimes - when it happens, either return to town to heal, scrounge up an antidote potion, or just feed him red potions and ride it out. However, at least there's a very solid helmet with life-leech for him: Andariel's Visage. This will push him up to 85% poison resist, while providing leech, IAS, and decent defense for his Defiance aura.
  7. mephiztophelez

    mephiztophelez IncGamers Member

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2006
    Messages:
    4,296
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    165
    Re: Help me make a bulletproof merc.

    get rid of the Guardian Angel, use a gladiators bane instead.

    socket hat and g-bane with Sol runes.

    profit?

    i'd also switch for a Holy Freeze merc myself.
  8. Clervis

    Clervis IncGamers Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2006
    Messages:
    1,393
    Likes Received:
    38
    Trophy Points:
    469
    Re: Help me make a bulletproof merc.

    I'm kind of being melodramatic, because all things considered, he doesn't die that much. It just really annoys me when he does, because I built my Bearsorc to be a total tank (and I need the Conviction to maximize her potential). Plus, I never remember to keep much gold on me.

    @Hubb: CBF is something I really haven't had much opportunity to supply, given that his sockets get Um'ed, but I imagine it would help a lot.

    @TheWorkingBoor: His elemental vulnerability has been Fire, Lightning, and Poison: fire from hydras and superpacks of Balrogs, lightning from Gloams and lightning enchanted, and poison from Achmel and Nihalak's snakes. Unfortunately, trying to address one in particular usually requires swapping out gear and making others more tolling.

    @Mephiztophelez: He's currently wearing a Gbane (18/17), which is pretty good, but not up to the standard I'd like. My initial inclination was to go with Holy Freeze as well and slow everybody down, but what I found was that I wade through monsters so quickly that Holy Freeze, and my merc in general, have trouble keeping up. Meanwhile, my Bearsorc is also wearing a Guardian Angel, so she only has to worry about physical attacks, which Defiance drops by about 25%.


    I've tried other armors like Fort and Coh, each of which was pretty sweet in their own right, but lacks the pure ruggedness of Guardian Angel. With Defiance and an upped eth GA, he'd be about 14K defense, which is nothing to sneeze at. I don't mind the price, because I'm not trying to build anything else. I'm gonna give it a go with Infinity, Upped Eth GA (Um), & Tal's Mask (Um). See how it turns out. If he ends up dying from physical attacks, I'll rescrap it. If it ends up being overkill, then that's just fine. Thanks for your suggestions guys, sorry I was so stubborn.
  9. gakky

    gakky IncGamers Member

    Joined:
    May 23, 2007
    Messages:
    1,040
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    120
    Re: Help me make a bulletproof merc.

    It's a problem. When you kill very quickly your merc misses out on leeching.
    Personally I like a Prayer merc, with Andy, Infinity, and Fortitude. He never dies from poison due to Andys +10%max resist and the fast regen. The 5%max light resist from Fortitude helps too. And note you can't leech from gloams.
    The life replenish helps a lot more than any extra defense from Defiance.
  10. Clervis

    Clervis IncGamers Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2006
    Messages:
    1,393
    Likes Received:
    38
    Trophy Points:
    469
    Re: Help me make a bulletproof merc.

    Yea, I know Prayer is probably the best way to keep him pumping, but I need the defense because my Bearsorc's block and recover speed are so lousy. I seem to be having quite a bit of problem with Stygian Furies. Anybody know what kind of damage they do?
  11. zaphodbrx

    zaphodbrx IncGamers Member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2011
    Messages:
    3,714
    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    467
    Re: Help me make a bulletproof merc.

    Physical damage. But they are ITD ( the red projectiles that is, not melee attacks ).
  12. magicrectangle

    magicrectangle IncGamers Member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2010
    Messages:
    2,548
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    166
    Re: Help me make a bulletproof merc.

    Their bloodstars (ranged attack) do physical damage that never misses (but can be blocked), so they're particularly troublesome when you get amp'd. Integer damage reduction is the best way to negate them - a sol'd gladiators bane or something. The act 5 hell ones do 47-84 damage (65.5 avg), that's 20-57 (38.5 avg) w/ sol'd gladiator's bane. Add in a nature's peace or two and it will be doing peanuts (idr is pretty good for your survivability in general, too).
  13. Karth

    Karth IncGamers Member

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2009
    Messages:
    1,565
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    165
    Re: Help me make a bulletproof merc.

    Prayer's a good way to keep your life maxed while you're teleporting from a waypoint to somewhere else, but once you're actually in combat it doesn't heal fast enough. Defiance and Holy Freeze both do more to keep your merc alive in a tight spot. Might probably does too.


  14. gakky

    gakky IncGamers Member

    Joined:
    May 23, 2007
    Messages:
    1,040
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    120
    Re: Help me make a bulletproof merc.

    Yeah sorry I forgot you can't teleport. Defiance or Holy Freeze would certainly be best.
    A couple of ideas :
    1. An alternative to teleporting your merc out of danger is town portal.
    2. If you have 2 keys you could use a barb singer with a high level shout (level 48 shout (+570%def 11 minute duration) and 50 BO).
  15. Clervis

    Clervis IncGamers Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2006
    Messages:
    1,393
    Likes Received:
    38
    Trophy Points:
    469
    Re: Help me make a bulletproof merc.

    I can deal with it fine. My merc is just a wimp and he can't use things like block or nature's peace. I get the feeling IDR isn't going to be so great considering that should I invest in a perf Sol'd GBane. That's 27 off of the 131 damage when amped (which is the real problem), and that's only a 20% reduction. Rather percent damage reduction from something like a Ber'd Vampire Gaze (28%), or BerBer'd CoA (31%), would be superior. One has Life leech the other has resists. So I have those two options, GA and Fort as armor options. I guess I just should try these options and see where the biggest threats are.



  16. Karth

    Karth IncGamers Member

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2009
    Messages:
    1,565
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    165
    Re: Help me make a bulletproof merc.

    Integer damage reduction is applied before percentile damage reduction; it will be much more effective than DR% under Amp. Remember, too, that DR% is just physical resistance, and Amp applies -100% physical resistance.


  17. zaphodbrx

    zaphodbrx IncGamers Member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2011
    Messages:
    3,714
    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    467
    Re: Help me make a bulletproof merc.

    I was trying out some pdr stuff while trying Nihilithak running.
    The merc had 3x Sol winged helm, Sol Gladiator's bane and eth Bonehew AmnShael.
    One of the side effects I noticed was that it made him almost completely immune to blood stars.

Share This Page