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Is the demon hunter a poor farming class?

Discussion in 'Demon Hunter' started by mysticc, Oct 31, 2012. | Replies: 95 | Views: 28146

  1. mysticc

    mysticc IncGamers Member

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    I often ask myself this question. I'm sure if you reach 200k+ dps, it might not feel like it, but often at lower gear levels, it doesn't seem to compare well with some of the other classes. Wizard seems to be the only class that is worse when your character has around 30-70k dps (although I'd still say the DH is far better).

    I've just been playing a witch doctor as a late, and she was geared much worse than my demon hunter. My demon hunter was doing around 90k dps, but my witch doctor at just 38k dps was actually clearing MP1 act 3 faster. I was in a bit of disbelief.

    As I geared the witch doctor to 78k dps, I could clear MP2 faster than my demon hunter could clear MP1.

    The biggest problem with the DH, from what I can see anyway, is that with modest gear - 60-100k dps, you can't both kill elites quickly and vault around the map like crazy. You can only basically do one or the other. If you know how to have both Vault and Cluster Arrow - Loaded for Bear in the same build... and have it work effortlessly without resource problems, I am all ears.

    Contrast this with the witch doctor, and she has the ability to cast zombie bears over and over again, gain lots of resources and life quickly, be invulnerable some of the time, and quickly move across the map all in the same build. This makes her quite an efficient character to play.

    My problem is that I'd love to actually play the demon hunter instead of the witch doctor, but I can't simply give up the farming efficiency of the witch doctor.

    For all the people that tout how great hungering arrow is, it seems to do much worse than Flash Fire or Ghost Bomb by a huge margin. If you don't critical hit with hungering arrow, it seems to do hardly any damage at all - even with a 14% damage modifier on Dead Man's Legacy. I tend to use Bola Shot - Thundering Ball for the CC, because it seems to be far stronger of an ability, even if the damage is a small % less.

    Now, I know gearing the Demon Hunter to even higher levels will "solve the problem", but that still doesn't solve the underlying problem - why can the witch doctor at subpar gear levels out-perform the demon hunter? What is fundamentally wrong with the class?

    I know people use legacy nats and stuff, and they probably don't even know what I'm talking about. I'm just a bit disappointed that I can't figure out an efficient farming build for the demon hunter, despite the fact that her gear is better than my witch doctor.
  2. Dethklok

    Dethklok IncGamers Member

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    This is me speed-farming Act 3 at MP0 at 300GF/300MF (video quality sucks though, I'm new to this screen-capture stuff). If you can do an Alkaizer run in under 13 minutes with any other class, let me know.
    This is my profile. I wouldn't say I have budget gear, but I don't have even one piece of Nat's gear. I'm also running Hardened for the lulz.
    This is why being able to speed-run MP0 is important.

    If you ask me, DH is the best farming class.
  3. mysticc

    mysticc IncGamers Member

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    Why are you running MP0 instead of MP1? I would probably not have the same problems if i were farming in MP0 (since it's a lot easier), which means you can get away with less dps (and thus probably do not require Loaded for Bear). The fact that you are not using Loaded for Bear tells me that's where your efficiency is coming from. Multishot, by itself, would never cut it in MP1. You'd be firing 20 shots with 100k dps before any elite pack died, which is terribly inefficient. The only way to consistent down elite packs in MP1 is with Loaded for Bear (or I guess Cluster Bombs if you are master at aiming it in 100% of elite pack cases, but I doubt anyone is).

    And again, contrast this with Witch Doctor, who can basically 2-shot 85% of elite packs with Zombie Bears. The other 15% run around like crazy morons, so you have to use Ghostly bomb or Spirit Walk into them individually, which takes a little longer. Still, it's overall faster than anything I've ever done with my Demon Hunter.

    You may be doing well on MP0, but I think any properly geared class can do well in MP0. That doesn't speak volumes for the demon hunter at all. Run Like the Wind, Tempest Rush, or Spirit Walk would all do fairly well on MP0 too. Your efficiency comes from stacking MF gear, which any class can do. That is not specific to Demon Hunter.

    I still submit that you will get raped in MP1, and lesser geared witch doctors will long clear MP1 before you even finish a 1/3 of your act 3 run.
  4. magicrectangle

    magicrectangle IncGamers Member

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    Act 3 already has level 63 enemies, so there's not much benefit to bumping it up to MP1, loot wise. The main thing you gain from MP levels is the ability to find keys/organs, but if you're just regular old loot farming MP0 is just fine.
  5. mysticc

    mysticc IncGamers Member

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    Okay. Even so, that doesn't make the demon hunter the best farmer :/ This still doesn't explain why the Witch Doctor (and consequently, the Barbarian probably although I can't say for sure) can farm greater MP levels efficiently. In the Witch Doctor's case, it can absolutely be done with crappy gear.

    With Witch Doctor, I don't even bother with MP0 since I think I can clear MP1 in the same time.

    I just tried Demon Hunter in MP0, and she still sucks. I have over 100k dps, and I cast hungering arrow over and over and over, and it takes forever to kill anything. The highest number I see is like 150k if it crits, and that's only sometimes. My witch doctor crits for like 350k, and it's to all enemies in the Zombie Bears vacinity - not just one enemy.

    I know I long complained how broken the Wizard class is, but the so is the Demon Hunter - but nearly as bad. The classes are still not at all balanced in Diablo 3. The power ranking is as follows.

    1. Barbarians
    2. Witch Doctors
    3. Monks
    4. Demon Hunters
    5. Wizards

    They need nerf the top 2 and buff the bottom 2.
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2012
  6. Dethklok

    Dethklok IncGamers Member

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    MF@MP0 = 100 (base) + 300 (gear/Plvl) + 75 (5xNV) = 475
    MF@MP1 = 100 (base) + 300 (gear/Plvl) + 75 (5xNV) = 500
    475 to 500 = +5.3% better item quality while monster health increases +50%
    I think the video clearly shows I kill elites on MP0 very, very fast; none of those mobs took more than 10 shots. On MP1 I would take 50% longer, 15 shots max.
    My efficiency comes from Tactical Advantage and Vengeance.
    Yeah you really didn't watch the video. You're closeminded and refuse to accept new information. So yeah, go ahead and believe what you want.
  7. magicrectangle

    magicrectangle IncGamers Member

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    This sort of depends on gear level. At low gear level I'd mostly agree with your rankings, although I might even put witch doctors ahead of barbarians if we're talking really low gear level.

    At high gear level, specifically for item finding (IE raping low MP settings) it looks more like:

    1. Demon Hunter
    2. Monk
    3. Barbarian
    4. Wizard
    5. Witch Doctor

    If instead we talk about ability to farm high MP (not at all efficient for loot/gold, but good for ubers):

    1. Barbarian
    2. Wizard
    <big gap>
    3. Monk
    4. Witch Doctor
    5. Demon Hunter

    I'm not sure how much high MP balance matters, since it is only particularly useful for farming one single item for one single item slot, the hellfire ring. I suppose it ought to be balanced, but it doesn't seem like it should be a huge balance priority.
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2012
  8. mysticc

    mysticc IncGamers Member

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    15 shots is basically 13 unnecessary shots if you compare it to a Witch Doctor. This is not me being closed minded - this is you not knowing about how strong a witch doctor is at farming these early levels with crappy gear. One zombie bear hit does like 350k damage, and I have less onboard DPS than you do by about 25-30%. The fact that you think it's "very fast" is irrelevant. It's slow compared to a witch doctor.

    The fact that you have to kite that mob at the beginning, I dare say, is pathetic. That's fast? All this illustrates is how bad the DH is compared to the Witch Doctor. The witch doctor would have killed it and moved on to the end of the map long before you killed it. I don't mean to say you're pathetic - but the class is. It's not balanced. This is blizzard's stupid fault. They make a game where you MUST tank to be efficient, but then give us a ****ty class called the Demon Hunter that has to kite and waste time and does crap damage. 200k onboard dps for a demon hunter is worse than 70-80k dps on a witch doctor.

    And of course you get efficiencies through Vengeance and Tactical Advantage - this is what I'm been doing for days when playing my demon hunter up to paragon level 37. It's no different than Run like the Wind or Tempest Rush. It's just the Demon Hunter's way to move fast around the map. All of the other classes except Wizard have the same advantage more or less. Sure, some are less efficient than others (like Spirit Walk), but coupled with their killing speed, it honestly is much faster, especially at MP1/2.

    Basically, you've shown that the Demon Hunter can farm the easiest setting on the game. The witch doctor can basically do the same thing at Mp2 with your level of gear in roughly the same amount of time, but getting the 8% trash drop.
  9. mysticc

    mysticc IncGamers Member

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    That all makes sense. I can only speak for the gear levels I'm talking about honestly, because that's all I have experience in.

    I do agree that the more gear you put on a Demon Hunter, it makes perfect sense that she would be the most efficient in the long run at low MP settings. It's just a shame that you need 300k onboard dps to realize this. I've thought the same thing, as it's a pretty simple question - "How can I kill stuff faster without Loaded for Bear on my bar?" The only answer to this question is getting better dps. Without better gear though, Witch Doctor blows the crap out of it I'm afraid.
  10. magicrectangle

    magicrectangle IncGamers Member

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    Except you don't need 300k dps, as dethklok has already demonstrated with his video, 100k dps lets you farm mp0 very quickly and effectively. There's simply no need to turn up the MP setting if you're not shopping for keys.

    The relevant metric is how much loot you can get per unit time, not how high you can set the MP setting before you start dying. That might be amusing, but it isn't going to make you any money. MP0 farming as a DH with 100k+ dps most definitely gets you lots and lots of loot per unit time.
  11. mysticc

    mysticc IncGamers Member

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    I totally get that. I farm Mp1 on my witch doctor because it's the same time as it would be on MP0. She basically 1-shots everything anyway, except for the moon clan occulists (the dudes that run around like idiots), and that's mostly because zombie bears has poor range. Everything else just drops immediately.

    On Demon Hunter, I did MP1 for the hell of it mostly, but also because trash was very easy to do with elemental arrow still (the same time as on MP0). The problem is just dealing with elites. With loaded for bear, it's actually pretty efficient on MP1 (it's a lot faster than he's killing them with Multishot on MP0), but then you can't get Vault - hence the problem.

    I've done an MP0 run with elemental arrow, and I did one with multishot. My elemental arrow time was much better.

    I still say say 100k dps is not enough to be *really* efficient as you could be. You'd need at least 200k for that. 300k is probably overkill - I dunno, it's not like we can easily test it. I just know 100k is not enough to kill things as fast as a witch doctor could.

    Ideally, if you want to be very efficient, you'd need to move around the map as well as a Demon Hunter could, but kill elites in just a few seconds like the witch doctor. If you can get the best of both worlds, you'd have a pretty efficient farmer ;)
  12. magicrectangle

    magicrectangle IncGamers Member

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    I'll take DH movement with Archon, please.
  13. mysticc

    mysticc IncGamers Member

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    That'll work too.
  14. Dethklok

    Dethklok IncGamers Member

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    Yeah, I let my EHP get a little low gearing, so I upgraded to a cloak with 150 more vit than it had before (zero). Most of the time I could gloom through phase beasts, but it failed about 10% of the time, which was too much. (New cloak is also a hatred regen upgrade; I lost 1 discipline). I could probably record a new run with less kiting (and better video quality -- the avi on my desktop plays crystal clear, so I just need a better converter).

    If I was a higher paragon level, I could cut some MF gear to EASILY have 120k dps, maybe more... and I will, with time. As my plvl indicates I don't play that much (I have a life, I'm on my cell chilling at work now); I just try to play smart.

    I'm planning on writing up an endgame multishot build guide for DHs, I've faithfully stuck by Fired at Will since 1.03 so I have lots of experience with how to gear for it.
  15. mysticc

    mysticc IncGamers Member

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    My point is that witch doctor doesn't care about its survival period, which makes it a better farming class. It even has a built-in way to prevent deaths, which is a boost to efficiency since you can play very reckless and tank like crazy. Tanking is efficiency incarnate for any class. Kiting contributes to way too much downtime, because it will produce less dps and you'll have to backtrack the ground that was lost when moving backwards.

    I've farmed act 3 on MP1/2 dozens of times and I haven't died once since I got above 40k dps on my Witch Doctor. I died on MP3 once, but that's only because I was super reckless and I underestimated the difficulty as it was the first time I was playing it (it's not really efficient to run anyway).

    On MP0 or MP1 with worse gear, the Witch Doctor fears no elite packs. It does fear molten on MP2 though (the common complaint we see on the blizzard forums). Reflect Damage has become a little scary as my Witch Doctor got closer to 80k dps, but as long as I see that the elite pack has it before I attack it, it's no problem. I just have not be lazy. I don't think this problem is exclusive to Witch Doctor though.

    I've ran my DH on MP0 several times yesterday with Elemental Arrow, and I finally got the build running similar to how you have it (I think a tad better - you should try elemental arrow out. I think it's more efficient for 100k dps). This will free up the build to take Nightstalker instead of Vengeance, which I think makes the build more efficient (at least for my gear anyway. I have no bonuses to discipline on my gear).

    The only drawback that I can see to using Elemental Arrow is that it can't shoot through walls. Multishot has the advantage there.
  16. Mad D

    Mad D IncGamers Member

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    By elemental arrow I'm assuming your choice rune is Ball Lightning? May I recommend experimenting with Echoing Blast as the hatred spender. If there is a constant need to kite around then placing some well position Echoing Blast traps ahead, then in turn kiting around those traps can be a very efficient way of clearing elites. Especially if you are able to mix in Custom Engineering or Marked for Death (Valley of Death).


    I would say efficiency in farming is about how much time you spend surviving and dealing DPS verses the time you spend reviving or having to kite away then backtrack to where you were. So in turn, I created a character at roughly 100k DPS but with the main focus in gearing was effective health (I just found it much cheaper to build a 100k DPS demon hunter that can survive than a 200k one that has to constantly kite all the time). My efficiency tops off at MP 5 in terms of speed. I currently use Imminent Doom with Echoing Blast (recently added marked for death) to make up for lack of raw DPS and mobs are cleared somewhat quickly.

    I'm currently brining up a Witch Doctor (although I have a friend who looks to invest some time into creating a MP 5 viable WD) so I'd like to be able to revisit this post sometime.

    Edit: I also noticed in another thread that Mysticc has/had a similar build in regards to DH stats (4000 armor, 500 resist, 100k DPS) I may have even at one point modeled my character around his/hers because the profile name looked very familiar. The difference is the having that extra amount of discipline, additional attack speed as well as choices in damage dealers. Those factors despite the base similarities could make a huge difference. I think straying away from the typical Hungering/Elemental build and experimenting with other skills may change the opinion.
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2012
  17. mysticc

    mysticc IncGamers Member

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    Yes, of course. There's no other viable option.

    For an MP0+ build, elemental arrow must be used to clear trash effectively. If you use anything else, except for maybe multishot (and even then, you are wasting too much hatred), the trash will not die in acceptable time frames. So if you want to introduce yet another hatred spender, then I'm not sure why it would be better than the Loaded for Bear variant (having both that and Elemental Arrow in the same build).

    For farming, I'm basically against anything that involves kiting. If I am kiting at all, I basically take a step back and ask, "What the hell is going wrong?" There's always an answer to this question, and once you solve that problem and stop kiting, farming efficiency goes up. Since traps are annoying to aim and get to work 100% of the time, and they imply a wait time for them to be set off by something, it already rules itself out for being efficient. I've tried the spike traps - they are not as effective as Loaded for Bear.

    I will re-iterate, the problem with the Loaded for Bear variant isn't kiting and it isn't its effectiveness - it's the fact that you can't have Vault on the bar. The loaded for bear variant can kill elites perfectly fine - it's main problem is the slow speed that the character moves across the map.

    When farming MP0, Elemental Arrow can be used to kill everything. While it is not the best elite killer in the world, with a high-enough dps (say 150-200k), it could be. This would allow the Demon Hunter to get Vault w/ Tumble on the bar, which ultimately speeds up the run to be as fast as humanly possible. Having 2 hatred spenders on the bar is already a recipe for disaster as I don't see how to get rid of Preparation, a Hatred Generator like Hungering Arrow or Bola Shot, the Bat Companion and Smokescreen/Shadow Power.

    The Bat Companion is not optional, and it is a better choice compared to Vengeance since you can get more DPS that way.

    I don't think Shadow Power is optional because reflect damage is too big of a threat in 1.0.5 now. So that means there's no room for 2 hatred spenders if you want Vault on the bar.

    That's not quite how I look at it at all. For me, farming efficiency is simply how fast I can achieve the run - that's it. It's the total time of killing, backtracking, kiting, dying, identifying and sell items, etc. Minimizing the downtime is usually the right place to optimize if the killing speed is adequate (i.e. 1- or 2-shotting everything in your path, which is usually the case for a Loaded for Bear build).

    This build will be much slower than the Loaded for Bear build, or the plain Elemental Arrow build on MP0. Imminent Doom is already too slow as you're arbitrarily adding 2 seconds at least onto anything you use it against. That's too slow.

    Also, MP5 for almost every character is not efficient in of itself. MP0/1 is where you probably want to farm at in almost all cases. You'd basically have to run MP3-5 in roughly the same amount of time to make it worth it, but I already know that a 100k dps Demon Hunter can simply not do this. You'd need 300-400k dps on MP5 to achieve it what a 150k dps could do on MP1.

    When you finally get around to playing him on Inferno with reasonable gear, I think you'll re-assess how efficient your Demon Hunter build is. You'll see this whole discussion in a totally different way.

    Attack speed is not critical for Demon Hunter, because the best bows are Crossbows anyway. 7% attack speed on a slow weapon is still a slow weapon. Crit % and Crit Damage are much better stats for a Demon Hunter.

    I choose the Hungering Arrow/Elemental Arrow build because it is potentially the most efficient at high gear levels on low MP settings. Anything else wastes too much resources since the Demon Hunter resource management is broken and doesn't have the same loopholes like the barbarian and witch doctor have.
  18. Vanadin

    Vanadin IncGamers Member

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    Good resists + good LOH on your weapon or amulet = problem solved.

    The only reason I even notice reflect damage is because I show damage numbers, and that was with an ammy that had about 500 LOH (I just upgraded to 900 LOH).
  19. mysticc

    mysticc IncGamers Member

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    I guess. For me, it was more important to get an amulet with the basic stats. Life on hit would make it cost far too much. Same goes with manticore. The life steal ones with the same stats as mine go for 5x the price the last time I checked. I didn't check life on hit, but I figured Life Steal would work out to be better anyway. If not with 120k dps, in the long-run it would be.

    My character has fairly good resists - over 500 and over 4000 armor. It doesn't make much of a difference when it comes to reflect damage. Shadow Power seemed the only good way to do it without paying a fortune. I agree that in theory, a good manticore with dex/2 sockets/life steal might remove shadow power from the bar. I'd have to test it, but I don't have the gold to buy such a weapon.

    In any event, I'm pretty close to 150k dps, and 118k dps is doing fine on MP0. It's still too low for MP1 in my opinion without Loaded for Bear, but it's been pretty efficient at MP0. When I get to 150k dps, I might be able to do MP1 in the same time as MP0.
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2012
  20. magicrectangle

    magicrectangle IncGamers Member

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    On MP0 spamming ball lightning at trash and low HP elites, sure, I guess.

    For high MP keyfarming / ubers using loaded for bear, gloom or go home. You can't get enough LoH to counteract loaded for bear with 200k dps reflected at you.

    Honestly on MP0 you could just blow them up and pick up their health globes, so long as your EHP is reasonable. You don't even need the LoH (nice to have though).

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