Diablo® III

Level 60 Review/Guide/Inferno Info

Posts: 39
Disclaimer: This guide/review is based on Inferno group runs for farming Neph stacks and clearing bosses. Its best with incredibly high glass cannon DPS... Like Wizards. If you want some lame strategy to solo Inferno Skeleton King go look somewhere else. Secondly I don't care if I do damage. That's why I have DPS in my group I feel the job of the tank is to... TANK. This build is to allow you to tank/kite mob packs keeping your DPS warm and safe so they can do the damage and feel like special snowflakes.

OK so here is the deal. You, like myself, decided to play a Monk. You were uber thrilled to play a melee class that could duck and weave its way into battle dropping mad DPS like it's 1997, while simultaneously dodging like a gazelle when you got into trouble. Sounded !@#$ing awesome even seemed awesome in the beta getting like 30% dodge at low levels. It made you think that eventually you could have well over 9000% dodge and you could solo Diablo because that fool couldn't hit you. Well I have bad news for you, this isn't what you will be doing in Inferno. About 17 minutes into 60 and doing the first act of Inferno I learned that Champ/Elite packs don't give any %^-*s how high your dodge is. They will eventually hit you and if you are not rocking at least 20k hps you're dead in one hit. This combined with the fact that, desecrate, plague, molten cannot be dodged means that your staying power in fights is limited to a few specific skills and some luck.

I raged for a bit, thought about re-rolling because frankly I didn't want to play a tank but then I realized I'm really lazy and knew that I wouldn't level another hero to max and just decided to make lemonade.

A few days later I had finally farmed a pretty good gear set that gave me the stats that I felt I needed, and after lots of time spent playing around with all the monk skills to figure out what is best in a monk tank role I am finally satisfied with my end result and wanted to share it with all of you.

To be clear I am not saying this is the best way to do it and frankly I could be dead wrong. This is just how I have found out to be most effective in grouping high level Inferno. If you think I'm an idiot feel free to say so in the comments below.

So here is my build with a skill breakdown and why.


Fist of Thunder - Lightning Flash - This is a pretty heavy spirit spamming build you need FoT simply because its the fastest way to generate spirit. Lightning Flash because 16% dodge is huge. Gives you roughly 10% more dodge for 95% of the time in all your fights. Well worth more then any other rune.

Side note: I really really really REALLY want to use Crippling Wave with the Concussion rune but it just doesn't generate the spirit you need. If you get some really nice +spirit gen gear then you would be able to use this skill and pretty much love your !@#$ing life.

Dashing Strike - Blinding Speed - Let me be clear, this skill sucks huge donkey nuts, but it absolutely necessary if you use Cyclone Strike, which this build does, so again I deal with it. This is your "Oh %^-* I just pulled 30 mobs around me and my cooldowns are about to run out" button. It's also mildly useful for dodging monster attacks that wind up and do massive damage/knockback when they hit, but the spirit cost is TO DAMN HIGH and you are not going to convince me to take the rune to make it cheaper. Basically you take the Blinding speed rune because you use this skill when !@#$ hits the fan and having that extra 20% will save you more often then not.

Serenity - Peaceful Repose - Not just the most badass ship in space, piloted by the most badass crew in space. It also happens to be your best skill. For 10 Spirit, that's right 10, you get 3 seconds of invulnerability AND a 6200-7700 heal. WHAT!? that's crazy. So you're going to take damage or you already have taken damage. Use Serenity. Fire about to turn you into fried chicken? Use Serenity. Down to 1k life with an Arcane beam about to slice you in half with three plague pools to dodge... USE SERENITY. I think you get the point. While I'm not going to recommend using this on cooldown I will recommend you getting very good at healing/negating damage at the same time with it. IE - You are damaged and a bunch of frozen balls are about to explode? Pop Serenity you get healed plus you negate the damage and dodge the Freezing effect Win/Win...Win? If you suck and didn't pop is soon enough you can still use it while frozen to break the CC and get back in the fight. Unless you are the worst monk player ever you will ALWAYS have enough spirit to use this.

Breath of Heaven - Circle of Life - Damaged? Use it. All day everyday. Should always be the first thing you use to heal. 15 Second cooldown while only costing 25 spirit means that you can/should spam this. Nothing more to say about that.

Cyclone Strike - Wall of Wind - The skill that pretty much makes you from being a lame %^- tank into the best tank in the whole *!@#ing universe. Group with some ranged dps or a whirlwinding Barbarian and you will instantly be aware of how $%^-ing awesome this skill is. Step one - run up to a group of monsters. Step two - Use Cyclone Strike. Step three - Watch your group cheer as all the monsters are stacked up in a nice neat little pile for them to shoot down. Step four - Profit. The one downside of this skill, its 50 Spirit, be careful how much you spam this key as this skill has no cooldown and can wipe your spirit pool very quickly. Why wall of wind? You just pulled a *!@# stack of monsters around you are are more then likely going to try and punch your skull inside out.

Mantra of Healing - Time of Need - I use this mostly for time of need and you will understand why when I explain my gear. What's time of need? Oh only 20% more resist to all elements of damage. $%^-ing hawt sauce imo.

Ok so I explained a little on how to use these skills but lets be honest... Flow charts are awesome!


OK OK so I suck at flow charts but you get the jist it's a pretty boring job but someone has got to do it.

Before I explain why I use the passives that I do here are the stats I am looking for on items in order of importance.

Vitality - Until you get 30k which is where I found out enough to tank most of Act 1 and 2
Any Resistance, but you must stick with that one resistance. I chose Arcane because its first on the AH list so it limits my need to look around... Lazy remember? Side note: Armor with with Arcane and Resist to All Elements its pretty much the bees *!@#ing knees in my world.

For my Weapon? I use a One Hander that gives Dex, Vit, Static Life on hit, and % life on hit. (Yes you want both if you cant find it)If I could get one with those stats PLUS spirit regen I would basically scream for $%^-ing joy. But that is a luxury and it's far more important to have those four I listed. Now here is the kicker my off hand is a.... SHIELD!? Yep it sucks but it must be used. Find a shield that gives Dex,Vit, and has decent Block % + Resists.

Now for the final numbers as of an hour ago before I started typing this...

Strength - 382
Dexterity - 1162
Intelligence - 595
Vitality - 897
Armor - 4936
Damage - 7246
Resistance - 726 to ALL - Side note: Physical is considered an element

So basically here how it all breaks down
30k+ HP
12% Block - I have a *!@#ty shield its my next to upgrade item
62% Damage reduction
31% Dodge - 42% While attacking - 52% for 3 seconds after Cyclone and Dash
70% Reduction to all element types.

Yep that's right this makes you a damage mitigation beast.... You dodge quite often but when you do get hit you reduce it down to the point where having 30k HP is enough. I used to run with 40k HP but switched out all my Vitality Gems for Dexterity Gems. I find that 30k is enough for acts 1 and 2 but Ill be needing several gear upgrades for 3 and 4.

So after reading this you can understand why I take the passives that I do. Dexterity = Dodge + Armor with Seize the Initiative. One with Everything is the most important allowing you to pile on one type of resist to affect all of them. I use Beacon of Ytar because everything else sucks. Anyone trying to tell me that Transcendence is good can go kick rocks. Ill take breath of heaven every 2.25 seconds sooner and Serenity every 3 seconds sooner over a 10% heal at the start of a fight(Assuming that Cyclone is your highest spirit cost at 50, and 50x62 is 3100) I would use Guardians Path over Beacon but it doesn't work with 1-hand Shield Combo... Really lame.

Side Note: Resolve isn't THAT bad if you find that your gear isn't quite good enough to handle Inferno yet. Although eventually you will get the gear that will allow you to get Crippling wave + Concussion which is resolve + 30% reduced attack speed.

Lots of the same questions keep coming up so I'm putting my responses in later posts here

Here's my thing with Inner Sanctum. Larger Monsters have a very large hit range and can outrange the effect you get from it. IE Mallers in Act 4 will just swing right through it crushing you for 20k damage. I don't know if this is how Blizz intended it to work but as of now it happens. Its very frustrating to be in the middle of that thing and still take damage.

First of all I hate Blinding Flash. The effect is broken early on E/C Mob Packs and on damage. It doesn't actually help you against the real Monk killers which is Ground attack magic like Plague/Desecrate/Arcane. You can't blind pools :) Dash is a bad skill and should feel bad because has short range and costs a lot of spirit for what it is. But getting backed into a corner with tons of pools around you Blinding Flash isn't going to save you or allow you to get around those pools without taking damage like Dash is. I Promise you that you will find that using Cyclone Strike/Blind will leave you mad as !@#$. Pull a bunch of E/C Mobs that knock you back into a corner... FLASH... But your still wedged in and cant get away... DEATH

Well that pretty much sums it all up. Hope this helped anyone wondering what the $%^- to do with their monk at level 60 when none of your friends that you normally group with want to take you on runs because you suck at dpsing. If you have any questions feel free to comment or send me a message.

Again this is all probably wrong and some super nerd is going to come and show you how to properly dance but until then... ENJOY!

If you want to see my gear add me in-game Xaiir#1606

TL:DR - Monks are tanks... Get over it.
Edited by Xaiir#1606 on 5/22/2012 11:24 AM PDT
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83 Night Elf Death Knight
Posts: 517
Just you wait. 2h monks are going to end up doing the best DPS in the game because tanking is boring.
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very interesting, will try. just starting inferno but from what I've seen so far we're pretty much pinholed into a tank spec anyway. Our resource requires melee hitting and most of the time melee hitting means death unless you're spec'd to mitigate it.
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I approve of this guide and look forward to trying it.
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Yes! Very interesting indeed.. I wanna try it! :D
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85 Human Death Knight
Posts: 82
I'm currently in Act 3 Hell on my Monk and I've already started to lose the creativity in the ways I get to make things die. The majority of my abilities are there for Oh Sh#$ moments. And damage is done by mouse 1 and 2. I don't get to explode whole rooms of mobs with Exploding Palm and the Essence Burn Rune anymore :(

I'm using this build http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/monk#aZgiTQ!XYb!YYZcbb if anyone is interested

Now when it comes down to Elites ( or whatever they are called, the mobs with rage inducing abilities), a good 60-70% of them I have to kite to an empty part of the map I won't be using so I can get on with my quests because they hit too damn hard.

I'm wondering how Inferno is going to turn out. Is it possible demon hunter or sorceress is the way to go ?

I hope not. I love my Monk :)
Edited by Padanfain#1190 on 5/20/2012 11:14 PM PDT
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Interesting guide, I'm in inferno act 2 and I think it's time for me to come out of !@#$ing denial about transcendence. I said back in act 2 hell "I'll just use this until I have enough health that it doesn't do anything". Well it doesn't %^-*ing do anything anymore. Honestly I'm an idiot after reviewing your guides numbers and my own numbers swapping through some passives, I can be way more survivable. Switching that !@#$ for one with everything.
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Best #!%&ing read ever.
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Posts: 39

Your build was very similar to mine pre Inferno. You wont last 15 seconds with only 1 defensive skill. The scaling from Hell to Inferno is like nothing I have ever seen in a game. Pretty much your fight is going to go like this with your current build...

Rush in, Get smacked for 10-18k Damage, you will panic and hit Serenity, Serenity ends, you hit SSS for 1 more second of invulnerability, you die. All in all you took the monster down to about 85%
Edited by Xaiir#1606 on 5/20/2012 11:31 PM PDT
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one thing though, why not use resolve over beacon passive? I'd assume -25% mob damage would outbeat a -15% cooldown on your stuff. or are you having very little fight time?
Edited by JunkTickler#1398 on 5/20/2012 11:31 PM PDT
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Posts: 39

I've though about this for a very long time... The reason being is end game I am assuming that I will actually find the +spirit regen gear that I want and will be able to switch to Crippling Wave + Concussion. Giving me the same effect Plus 30% reduced attack speed from monsters.

But I will make a small edit at the end pointing out that you can use this skill if you haven't quite hit the 30k HP and need more staying power
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i'm going to try this, what is your weapon? fist+shield? or something+Shield? do we need attack speed?? i think i'm going to switch to 1h+shield when i touch hell and inferno
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Posts: 39

Yes 1 Hander + Shield... It's in the guide right above my stats.
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I'd like to point out that from every test that I have personally done, you are immune to damage and any sort of crowd control, including those little ice balls, during the Seven Sided Strike animation.
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Posts: 334

I found the dodge chance on cyclone and Fist to be really underwhelming and eventually completely gave up on cyclone when pulling guys that generate ground DoTs into me meant instant death even when they were permanently unable to do an action

Even if I discount the dodge stack our builds are still very different
I feel there are more efficient ways to heal than Breath especially if you got a fleeing teammate
(Breath is simply not going to cut it)

I will attest to One With Everything; however, I do not even think it's possible to run a monk in Inferno without it

Between that and Peaceful Repose there is actually nothing else in common, but things could change as I'm still in A2
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Posts: 39

I am not relying on dodge to be my main damage mitigate in fact its my lowest mitigate stat. It is just an added bonus to the extreme amount of resists that I have stacked. I fully understand that you cant dodge ground DoTs which is why DPS Monk isn't viable.

I used Eye of the Storm for quite awhile but found that I am really only using cyclone once or twice a fight so the 20 Spirit its saving me isn't worth it. I figured its better for me to stack my dodge to 67% for the first 3 seconds in a fight to help counter the spike damage that I am about to receive from pulling so many mobs near me.

As far as the dodge on FoT their is nothing else that really stands out as valuable as a static 16% dodge. There is no way you are not attacking every 2 seconds using FoT unless you are getting fear bombed by Champion/Elites in which case you are probably not near them and dodge doesn't matter at that point.

I am curious to know how you think you can more effectively heal yourself then my set up. Spike Damage is far to strong in Inferno to think that any Heal over time skill the monk has can come close to keeping you up.

Edit: Also the people I run with understand that I am not a healer nor do they expect me to heal. My heals are my own.. The Barb I run with doesn't rely on my heals but does get them from time to time.
Edited by Xaiir#1606 on 5/21/2012 12:50 AM PDT
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Posts: 369
How the hell do you have 726 resist ?! I thought I was doing well at my paltry 255. Now I understand why I'm having troubles in Inferno >.>
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Posts: 39

All my gear except my Shoulders and Amulet have Arcane resist or All Resist (Some Even have Arcane + All) I am currently looking make all my pieces of armor have Arcane Resist. Plus the 20% From Mantra of Healing Rune. It's really important to stack just 1 resist and use the One with Everything Passive.

Side Note - With my Barb friend that I run with his shout gives me 1078 which is 77% percent to all... Pretty Epic.
Edited by Xaiir#1606 on 5/21/2012 12:51 AM PDT
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85 Blood Elf Paladin
Posts: 5,907
I love this thread.

I don't have any resist on my gear. For this specific build I understand it's paramount, but generally how important is resist?
Healing Forum MVP
Edited by Practical#1393 on 5/21/2012 12:52 AM PDT
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Posts: 39

Honestly I feel its the most important stat to being a Monk tank. Dodge has large diminishing returns and you can't dodge ground DoT's from Champ/Elite Packs. Best thing to do it just make them hit you for a very small amount of damage. In 4 Person Inferno Desecrate/Plague only really hurts when several stacks are on top of each other. Molten/Fire chains are a joke to me and I just stand there and tank the damage.
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