Diablo® III

Saltydog's Wizard PvP Guide

Saltydog Montage 1

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WMrw71pLxdY
  • ══════════════════════════════════════════════════════
    - The Basis of a PvP Wizard -

    A Wizard is arguably one of the weakest PvP Classes but there are many things that we can do to improve our skills. First of all we need to understand how our spells work. Ray of Frost is the only decent Wizard Spell that requires a good amount of Attack Speed. The rest of the Wizard Spells such as Wave of Force, Teleport, Blizzard, and Storm Armor all rely on your Damage Per Hit. It is the general concensus that a 2H weapon is the end game Wizard weapon in PvP. Due to the Wizards low damage Spells we must play patient and use our evasive features to our advantage. To maintain health during a long battle the best addition a Wizard can have is Extra Health to Potions. This gives us essentially a 3rd life after Unstable Anamoly. With Patience, Skill, Terrain usage, and the Correct Gear a Wizard can do very well in PvP.

  • The Golden Rule of Wizard - (DPH = DPS/IAS)
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    - Basic Spells -

    - Ray of Frost - Does huge DPS and is very good for slowing the Enemy.
  • Good Runes - Numb, Snow Blast, Cold Blooded, Sleet Storm.
  • - Blizzard- Scales only from DPH so a must for a 2h Wizard. Great crowd control, our only "DOT", and does not require channeling (stand still and die).
  • Good runes- Stark Winter and Grasping Chill.
  • - Wave of Force - Does NOT dodge, so it is mandatory vs DH. I use it vs all matchups.
  • Good runes- Impactful, Force Affinity, Forceful Wave.
  • - Teleport - Huge dmg, can be used to evasion.
  • Good Runes - Calamity is a must vs all but Monk. VS Monk Wormhole or Reversal.
  • - Mirror Image - A MUST, cancels DOT. Can be used as a wall (Duplicates) and is very good at confusing the enemy.
  • Good runes - Duplicates (Wiz, DH), Mocking Demise (Monk), Mirror Mimics (if using Wof or Frost Nova).
  • - Storm Armour - A great additional damage skill which give us that extra damage (and Move Speed with Rune)
  • SCRAMBLE Always! Always! No exceptions. 25% Extra Movespeed is INVALUABLE.
  • - Energy Armor - Great at mitigating Crits from Barbarians.
  • Good Runes - Force Armor, Prismatic Barrier.
  • Frost Nova Great at Crowd Control and following up Nova with Burst Damage.
  • Good Runes - Bone Chill.
  • ══════════════════════════════════════════════════════
    - Basic Passives -

    - Illusionist - A must have for any DH, HOTA Barb, Monk, Wiz, or Spirit Barrage WD.
  • Simply restores your Teleport and Mirror Image allowing you to cancel DOT's and Teleport away or onto them for damage.
  • - Critical Mass - Can be used very well with Ray of Frost.
  • Restores the Cooldown of Frost Nova and Mirror Image most notably versus a High EHP Rend Barb.
  • - Cold Blooded - 20% more Damage with your Cold Spells.
  • Really gives Blizzard and Ray of Frost that extra bit of Damage which Wizards need.
  • - Glass Cannon - Great Passive for extra Damage when not using a Cold Spell.
  • I use this with Mines and it really gives them the extra kick they need.
  • - Unstable Anomoly - Restores like to 45% on Fatal Blow.
  • Absolutely Mandatory. It's our 2nd life!
  • - Blur- Reduces Melee damage by 20%
  • Great vs Barb or if the Witch Doctor uses Corpse Spiders.
  • ══════════════════════════════════════════════════════
    - Matchups -

    All of the videos posted are trying to show either how to play the specific skill set (Mines) or how to explicity use the terrain to avoid attacks and deal damage. Make sure to hit that 1080p Button the quality is very poor in 360p!

    ══════════════════════════════════════════════════════
    - Wizard vs Witch Doctor -

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tpM9C-TacF8&
  • By far the toughest matchup. One mistake, one wrong mirror image and you are toast. I simply play a spam Blizz game and wait for opportunities for Tele/WOF and avoid the little piggy shaman. If he Spirit walks (goes invisible) Run like a !@#$% instantly. He is 90% of the time going to try and plant hex at your feet. Just run in one direction as far as you can go. He will reappear and at this time blizzard and Tele/Wof onto him.

  • Wave of Force - Force Affinity
  • Blizzard - Stark Winter
  • Teleport - Calamity
  • Mirror Images - Duplicates
  • Storm Armour - Scramble
  • Magic Weapon - Force Weapon
  • Passives, Illusionist, Cold Blooded, Unstable Anatomy.
  • ══════════════════════════════════════════════════════
    - Wizard vs Barbarian -

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RC4AA_k0A6Q&
  • http://i.imgur.com/huTyGhpl.jpg
  • Stack the Arcane Mines either in the open or behind a hidden wall. Use the terrain to your advantage and wait for chances for safe Wave of Force or Teleports. This build is very luck based but is the safest and largest damage build I have found.

  • Arcane Torrent - Arcane Mines
  • Wave of Force - Impactful
  • Teleport - Calamity
  • Mirror Images - Mirror Mimics
  • Storm Armour - Scramble
  • Magic Weapon - Force Weapon
  • Passives, Illusionist, Glass Cannon, Unstable Anatomy.
  • ══════════════════════════════════════════════════════
    - Wizard vs Barbarian Build #2 -

    “Salty’s Frosty Mines”

    This build Centers around our timing and large mine damage. If the Barb is decently glassy (Skorn/DH) and skilled at evasion this build may be your best bet. The build is essentially a “Double Disable” build with Arcane Mines instead of Ray of Frost. If your damage is not high enough you may run into Arcane Power issues and this may be solved with Critical Mass and a 1H APOC setup. Start by freezing the Barb with Frost Nova and immediately cast Mirror Images. Now you should start casting Mines onto his location and be watching for Cooldowns of Nova and Mirrors. If you have enough EHP and the Barb is using HOTA and doesn’t have godly damage (Luan), don’t be afraid to let him give you a smack or two. This will proc Illusionist allowing more Mirror Images to be Cast. This build is optimized against a wall. Teleport will allow you knockback abilities which can be used either to knock the barb into a potential stack of Mines or flat out finish a Barb if you have the DPH.

  • Arcane Torrent – Arcane Mines
  • Frost Nova – Bone Chill
  • Teleport – Calamity
  • Mirror Images - Mirror Mimics
  • Ice Armor – Ice Reflect
  • Magic Weapon - Force Weapon
  • Passives - Illusionist, Cold Blooded, Unstable Anatomy.
  • ══════════════════════════════════════════════════════
    - Wizard vs Barbarian Build #3 -

    “Double Disable”

    This build centers around the Wizard’s Critical Mass, Ray of Frost, and Crowd Control Effects. You want to engage the Barb with Ray of Frost and when he gets close to you, immediately Frost Nova. Start casting Ray of Frost again and when he becomes unfrozen cast Mirror Images and start casting Ray of Frost. This build is essentially a face tank build that requires either APOC or very low IAS. (At 1.0 IAS with Cold Blood Rune AP does not drop, with a .9 Mace you gain AP) This build is very fun and there are many different variations (Wave of Force). Note: Although I feel this build is inferior to a Mine Build due to the Damage Potential and Defensive Advantages that Mine Builds provide

  • Ray of Frost – Cold Blood
  • Frost Nova – Bone Chill
  • Teleport – Calamity
  • Mirror Image – Mirror Mimics
  • Ice Armor – Ice Reflect
  • Magic Weapon – Force Weapon
  • Passives – Critical Mass, Cold Blooded, Unstable Anomoly
  • ══════════════════════════════════════════════════════
    - Wizard vs Monk -

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WRmYKiBY9Zs&
  • My least favorite matchup. Blizz around a pole and pray. If the monk attacks, run. If the monk runs, attack. Monk is all timing dependent and if they get a good stun on you, you are surely dead. Be wary of bells, they can attack through walls. So take that into account.

  • Arcane Torrent - Arcane Mines
  • Blizzard - Stark Winter
  • Teleport - Wormhole
  • Mirror Images - Mocking Demise
  • Storm Armour - Scramble
  • Magic Weapon - Force Weapon
  • Passives, Illusionist, Cold Blooded, Unstable Anatomy.
  • ══════════════════════════════════════════════════════
    - Wizard vs Demon Hunter -

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cxpzk9kyk3I&
  • This is my favorite matchup. Spam that blizzard and use large obstacles to block attacks. Let storm and blizz do the damage. Teleport instant WOF can be lucky vs a dh but can be scary vs a good dh. Mirror images should be spammed as often as possible to create shields from Impales and Rapid Fire. If he uses rapid fire, let him attack while you hide behind a pillar, wait for him to come close to running out of hatred and then Tele/Wof. You should take note of his resources and what max disc he has. If he runs, he is likely low on Disc and you should Blizz him.

  • Wave of Force - Forceful Wave
  • Blizzard - Stark Winter
  • Teleport - Calamity
  • Mirror Images - Duplicates
  • Storm Armour - Scramble
  • Magic Weapon - Force Weapon
  • Passives - Illusionist, Cold Blooded, Unstable Anomoly
  • ══════════════════════════════════════════════════════
    - Wizard vs Wizard -

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qv56Ay-TkUM&
  • This is actually one of my least favorite matchups because it's a game of who can get a Crit Tele or Crit Storm. Hold south and wait for the Wizard to come looking for you. Cover him with Blizzard and Tele onto him. If his Unstable has popped then it will be easy to finish the kill. If not then find cover play smart, Blizzard will easily kill him from afar with minimal risk.

  • Wave of Force - Forceful Wave
  • Blizzard - Stark Winter
  • Teleport - Calamity
  • Mirror Images - Duplicates
  • Storm Armour - Scramble
  • Magic Weapon - Force Weapon
  • Passives, Illusionist, Cold Blooded, Unstable Anatomy.
  • ══════════════════════════════════════════════════════
    - Best In Slots (IMO) -

    Weapons-
  • Doom Hammer - 1400 Average Black DMG, 350 Int, 150 Vit, 180CD, Socket.
  • Skorn - 1425 Average DMG, 500 Int, 150 Vit, 180 CD, Socket.
  • Echoing Fury - 1250 DMG, 160 Int, 60 CD, Socket.
  • Rare Mace/Spear - 1200 DMG, 100 Int, 100 Vit, 60 CD, Socket.
  • Triumvirate - 100-400 DMG, 250 Int, 100 Vit, 8CC.
  • Shoulders-
  • Vile Ward - 260 Int, 70 Vit, 10% Life.
  • Crafted - 260 Int, 100 vit, 10%, Life Armor or Strength, and if Lucky Extra Health to Potions.
  • Gloves-
  • Rare gloves. CC, CD, Allres, Int, Vit. If you get lucky grab pot.
  • Rings-
  • Litany of the Undaunted - Either EHP (12% Life) Balanced (250 Int 100 Vit), or DMG (4.5CC/50CD).
  • Zunimassas Pox. 5 CC, 30 CD, large Int, Vit, Life %. Many good variations of Pox's.
  • Boots-
  • Zunimassas Trail - 180 Int, 80 Vit, 60 Allres, 9000+ to Potions.
  • Ice Climbers - 260 Int, 80 Vit, 12% Move Speed.
  • Pants-
  • BT Pants - 290 Vit, 90 Int 70 All res.
  • Rare Pants - 150 Int, 250 Vit, 60 All res, 300 Armor, 2 Sockets.
  • Chest-
  • Zuni chest. 180 Int, 270 Vit, (Life%, Elite%, or Pot Bonus).
  • Belt-
  • BT Belt - 280 Int, 80 Vit, All res.
  • The Witching Hour - Many good variants. I recommend Allres, Pot, and Armor with 90 Int.
  • Helm-
  • Tal Rasha's Guise of Wisdom - 180 Int, 70 All res, 12000+ Potion, 6CC. Or 280 Int, 80 Vit, 70 All res, 6CC.
  • Amulet-
  • Tal Rasha's Allegiance - 6%, 275 Int, 275 Vit 8CC/65CD.
  • Crafted Amulet with similar stats and All res or Armor.
  • Bracers-
  • Lacuni Prowlers - Mandatory IMO for the Move Speed. 80 Int, 80 Vit, 60 Allres, 4CC.
  • ══════════════════════════════════════════════════════
    - Terrain and Techniques -

    One of the biggest things that Wizards must use is the Terrain to be able to defend ourselves from attacks. Some general positions I will depict in pictures below.
    ══════════════════════════════════════════════════════
    "Home Base"
    This spot is where I kite and watch for enemies running South. This picture depicts the three lanes where enemies will run looking for you. You should immediately Blizzard them and start kiting them around the Graveyard.
  • http://i.imgur.com/zI5kTAQl.png
  • ══════════════════════════════════════════════════════
    The "Stripper Poles"
    These are the best Stripper Poles on the map which are great areas to block Impales or Rapid Fire and allow you to peek out and cast Blizzard.
  • http://i.imgur.com/wqT7o4ul.png
  • ══════════════════════════════════════════════════════
    Stripper "Walls"
    These are great locations however can let the opponent take the South position and gain a huge advantage. Use these areas for cover until you can safely make your way and take South.
  • http://i.imgur.com/Spk8Q9gl.png
  • ══════════════════════════════════════════════════════
    Hidden Mine Locations
    These are the spots which I stack hidden Arcane Mines and try to lure the enemy to walk into the stack.
  • http://i.imgur.com/huTyGhpl.jpg
  • Edited by Saltydog#1871 on 10/4/2013 8:51 PM PDT
    Reply Quote
    best wiz in the game.
    Reply Quote
    Yeah, very likely the best PVP Wizard in Americas that still plays.
    Reply Quote
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    Good stuff, always a fun fight from salty, and frog!
    Edited by BraveSirRobn#1357 on 9/29/2013 5:30 AM PDT
    Reply Quote
    Nice guide! Shouldn't we request sticky for some stuff in this forum?
    Reply Quote
    Posts: 195
    Awesome! Thanks.
    Reply Quote
    Posts: 8,053
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    <(^^<)
    Reply Quote
    Updated with more builds.
    Reply Quote
    Best guide out there, useful information.
    Reply Quote
    WOAHHH

    I was just playing with you while reading the guide, didn't even make the connection, you offered to help while I was afk ahahah. Thanks for the guide man, super helpful :)
    Reply Quote
    Hey.
    I am a retired pvp wizard from EU.
    I really appreciate your work as the pvp wizard community has always been small.

    Let me add something:
    first, I especially like the idea of videos, but you should concentrate on recording some really significant ones. It is much better to watch a video that is longer than 1 min and where multiple fights are seen. Your kills recorded might just be some lucky punches (especially your barb enemy seems to not know what he is doing..)

    speaking of barbs: have you ever tried the anti barb build I developped some time ago?

    rof - cold blood
    wof - stun
    teleport - wormhole
    mirror images - mimics
    frostnova - bone chill
    storm armor - power of the storm

    passives: cold blooded, critical mass, U anomaly

    the build relies on massive dmg output in combination with stun. as critical mass gets stronger the more aps you have you take a 1hand weapon. you can equip pretty much like normal archon gear, you only need 9 apoc and of course some ehp, potion, liferep etc

    also you have forgotten a very underrated offhand: the oculus
    http://us.battle.net/d3/en/item/the-oculus

    it helps to reset the teleport cooldown (very important) and the 6% elite dmg scale very well.

    btw why dont you like wiz vs. wiz? if played right its very tactical and makes fun!

    blizzard
    hydra
    teleport - calamity
    mirror images
    diamond skin
    storm armor

    cold blooded, UA, illusionist

    best regards :)
    Reply Quote
    all his "Saltydog" kills are usually lucky your right on point.
    Reply Quote
    @Shadow88

    Hello fellow Wiz!
    I am also semi-retired but have a decent set I can still play with.

    The videos were just a fun idea to try and get some people into PvP. I don't plan on making any more haha. I just wanted some cool kills.

    I don't doubt the Occulus but personally I would never use it. I am a very well known wall/pole hugger and the blue trail that is omitted makes invisibility impossible.

    I do use the "Double Disable" build quite a bit. The only difference is I stack mainly DPH instead of DPS so I can go more tanky with Crystallize instead of Storm Armor.

    I do love Wiz vs Wiz. It's been awhile since I made any significant changes to the guide. I found that EF+Trium Freeze Blizzard with ROF is the best skills set vs them imo. Why hydra? I have found the mirror images counter it and I am much more of a ranged player vs Wiz so the proximity really bothers me.
    Reply Quote
    Ok :)

    well, as i said: you sacrifice a lot of power of cm if you go for 2h. keep in mind that cm also resets your mirrors which is crucial vs rend barbs. also i've tested ice armor (not only me but whole eu wiz comunity). the result is that you can trash it (sorry). rend is considered as a ranged attack and vs hota it does not add enough ehp. on the other side continous hits of stormarmor do ALOT dmg. especially a crit hit on a frozen target (+%dmg).

    i was indeed an advocacy for using rof vs wizard but the main downside of it is that you have to stand still (which is deadly vs wiz). if you would use mirrors to counter hydra you will get hit by storm armor afterwards. the hydra is important because wiz vs wiz is a placement/ tactical game. one mistake and a calamity teleport kills you.

    you normally try to blizzard your enemy to slow him down and place a hydra. use teleport for instant dmg but keep in mind that a counter teleport will come. so you have to play well with your mirror/ diamond skin cooldowns and think some steps ahead :)
    Reply Quote
    Just want to know , how do u know rend is range damage? Did u test it out?
    Reply Quote
    No offense. I ask so just because I thought rend is neither range or melee
    Reply Quote

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