Diablo® III

Hardcore Monk Strategy

I want to get the discussion rolling for those Monks out there that want to have more advanced strategy when it comes to hardcore difficulty. Essentially, what is working for you?

I will start with what I have and I welcome criticism.

Crippling Wave (Concussion) - I run this for the -20% attack speed and damage to all enemies I hit.

Blinding Flash (Blinded and Confused) - I use this for the crowd control aspect.

Breath of Heaven (Circle of Life) - The best heal in the game.

Serenity (Peaceful Repose) - Personal shield/heal that can also be used while I'm CC'd.

Inner Sanctuary (Safe Haven) - Another heal and a place where mobs can't come into.

Mantra of Evasion (Divine Protection) - Dodge is always a welcome stat to take 0 damage from an incoming attack, and the rune which is very useful for hardcore players who manage to get below 25%, a shield that reduces damage by 80% for 3 seconds to you and your party is incredibly useful.

Passives
Seize the Initiative - Armor increased by 100% of your dexterity, mitigation is near top priority, and if you can get it by stacking dexterity...perfect.

The Guardian's Path - 15% to dodge when dual-wielding...an additional 15% to dodge is worth it...again while you go offensive.

One with Everything - All resistances equal to your highest resistance, Obviously this only makes a difference if you have unbalanced resistances with your gear, but resistance is SO important once you hit nightmare and above.

There it is, obviously this is more of a support build (as I will be running with a few others) but I feel that it will be very effective later on in hardcore.
Reply Quote
I run act 1 inferno with a Barb, a WD, and until recent death another monk (RIP Sun), 9k dps, 42k hp, 630 res.
I've been using support spells because of the luxury of playing in a group, have only been doing them for a few days now but are having less and less trouble as we become more comfortable with the difficulty.

Main attack: Fists of thunder (bounding light): Fast attack, generates quick spirit, and the chain light helps with mobs.
Secondary: Dashing strike (flying side kick): Gets me out of sticky situations and allows me to chain stun rares, bosses, and annoying champs.
Breath of Heaven (Circle of Life): healing, don't go anywhere without it.
Blinding Flash (either Searing Light or Self Reflection): Good mob control.
Serenity (Peaceful Response): Bubble and heal
Manta of Evasion (Divine Protection): In case of emgency

Passives:
Transcendence
Pacifism
One With Everything
(I may be the only monk in inferno without Near Death Experience, but I prefer to keep my hp topped off with transcendence, use my spirit to heal myself, and know my own limits than have a backup).

Doing act 1 runs with a group helps, I know I could change up some of the support spells for increased damage for a time after casting but these have kept us alive. Were I to solo act 1 I would definitely change up the spells, but as of yet no one complains of having increased dodge spammed and having a heal just in case.
Edited by Styrax#1683 on 6/2/2012 11:10 AM PDT
Reply Quote
I am only a level 43 Monk in Hardcore but this is what I have been using. I mainly solo with the Enchantress follower.

Crippling Wave (Concussion) to hamper the enemy and have them deal less damage
Seven-Sided Strike (Pandemonium) Good damage and 25% chance to stun
Blinding Flash (Blinding Echo) crowd control and a second flash to interrupt
Breath of Heaven (Circle of Life) heals
Serenity (Peaceful Repose) Invulnerable and heal
Mantra of Evasion (Divine Protection) dodge and shield just in case

Passives:
Transcendence
Seize the Initiative
Pacifism

I will probably use Near Death Experience once I unlock it.
Any thoughts on this build?
Reply Quote
Posts: 567
Do not underestimate the passive "Resolve" - 25% damage reduction is huge.

My current build in ACT 4 nightmare - nothing brings me below 90%.

http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/monk#bdgiXQ!ZXY!ZZaZZb

Now - You may be asking why not utilize blind? Well - it really only limits their ability to hit you by 30% and last 4 seconds. Whereas Sweeping wind procs life on hit and keeps a steady flow of health coming in even to what cannot hit me.

My primary attack gives me 50% armor bonus - combine this with a shield and im generally at 65% damage reduction for my level (THAT IS HUGE). Combine that with Resolve and The Im at around 80% damage reduction. After blocking with shield...you see where I am going - I take very little damage. Some people swear by dodge builds - but honestly what kills monks are the things you CANNOT DODGE (Aoe puddles, arcane enchanted, etc.)

There are so many builds available to the monk, just so much versatility.
Reply Quote
I'm a 60 HC monk in inferno and I have known many fellow 60 monks over the past couple of weeks. Each of them prefers/preferred marginally different builds, some of which, I imagine, will surprise most of you. What we can learn from this, as I will show below, is that the monk can be built with a great amount of variance and still rise unfaltering. What I cannot stress enough, however, is that PASSIVE SPIRIT REGENERATION is KEY to survival while leveling. I have known more monks than I care to count who have fallen due to lack of spirit.

Since Boon of Protection was nerfed, this is how I leveled/ recommend leveling in normal http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/monk#adgTXh!ZcY!abaaaZ

This is in no way a necessary build, while I was leveling I was constantly switching in and out skills such as Blinding Flash and Cyclone Strike to see what worked for the current fight. It is important, however, to always have an OUT, such as Dashing Strike or Tempest Rush (25% movement speed Rune). A little known fact about Dashing Strike is that it allows the monk to escape artificially created walls from Waller Elites as well as Jail's from Jailer enchanted elites.

As a side note, when switching skills, do so in town if you can. Switching in town does not force a cooldown on the ability, while switching outside of town will cause the move to be unusable for an agonizingly long period of time. Similarly, as I and many of my comrades have done often, if you do switch your skill outside of town but need it right away for the next boss fight or what have you, you can leave the game and come back in to reset the cooldown.

In nightmare, conviction aura will no doubt be unlocked for you, which in most cases is a huge boost. If you would rather pick up a different passive talent than Chant of Resonance, I would recommended having at least some sort of passive spirit regen, possibly even from Mantra of healing's Circle of breathing.

In hell, I vaulted through with a spec I was just loling around with and found it to be extremely powerful: http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/monk#bdgjXh!UXY!Zcacbc

Make sure to allow your earth ally to tank all the mobs you would rather not deal with while you let the pesky ones attempt to hit you. You can reach some extremely high dodge numbers with this build and the armor gleaned from Deadly Reach's Keen Eye rune will provide the necessary barrier for all that which manages to get through your lightening fast reflexes. This build, however, is dependent upon you having a weapon and/or a helm that provides spirit regeneration. If you do not have either, then you must replace one of the skills or passives to gain it. With this build you can go extremely defensive and allow backlash to destroy all those around you. As a side note to this, Backlash actually has a small knockback to nearby units which interrupts their actions. This is simply put, awesome.

In inferno, I use the following build to do goblin runs: http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/monk#bcgTXQ!Tcb!cZabbZ
Despite what many people may argue to be an exploit of the game, I strongly urge all those making their way into inferno to run it. Without the items gleaned from the goblin, (whose terminology can be explained with a simple google or twitch search), Inferno is literally impossible for HC, as testament of the top HC players attempt at A2 Inferno last week. Anyone who has made it to Inferno will tell you that the mobs are just to powerful, both in tankyness and damage to be overcome without some serious farming time. Yes, hell mode can give you a good farm, but in order to progress in inferno, you need inferno items and if you cannot kill elites in inferno, you will not progress. It's a bit of a catch 22. Inferno was designed to kill you. It is not player friendly.

For actually killing the goblin, I highly recommend switching to Guiding Light passive and Conviction Aura with Overawe rune. This will increase the damage of your party exponentially, which of course will be low from lack of actual gear (and a preference of MF gear).

For Inferno progression, I know a monk who has managed to down the Butcher on his own-- named Dinglez. He uses this build: http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/monk#aigRXh!TXY!ZYaabc

It is focused, much like the hell build I gave earlier, on dodge. You may note that he does not have One with Everything as a passive. This is because he manages enough All Resistance and stacking of Physical Resistance to negate the necessity of the passive. Furthermore, the use of Near Death Experience has saved him on occasion, specifically when he fought Leoric. He has 500-550 All Resistance and near 650 physical resistance.

As this post is nearing its capacity for characters, I will end here. But I have much more to say on the monk class and if you have any questions or simply want to chat, my name is Severis#1784.
Edited by Severis#1784 on 6/2/2012 12:53 PM PDT
Reply Quote
hey

just started night mare level and i wanted to know whats are some tips. im noticing that each level needs a different approach for gear and skill when it comes to the monk and i would like to know whats the best things i should look for. should i do a lot of farming in nightmare? or should i just use merchants and hope for the best?

you can email me at tehron92973 at aol

thank you man and your post was informative :) i gotta try to link up with you online sometime because im not as good as i could be with the character :)
Reply Quote

For Inferno progression, I know a monk who has managed to down the Butcher on his own-- named Dinglez. He uses this build: http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/monk#aigRXh!TXY!ZYaabc

I downed the butcher on my own yesterday. I used this setup.
http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/monk#UcgjXh!UXY!bZacba

I normally use crippling wave, but I switched to hundred fists before the fight to up my single target damage a little. No magic find stacks, but hey. I had to avoid a few packs in the halls of pain. Namely, the disentombed horrors hit a little harder than I am comfortable tanking.

Your friends gear sounds like it might be a little better than mine, but I am sitting at
6108 armor, 432 resist all, 11k damage, 44k hp, 41% dodge, 27% block, 450 life on hit. Act2 is still basically a deathpit wih my stats. I got grazed by a normal white wasp and it did 3/4 of my hp.
Reply Quote
Filthymonkey's reiterates my main point about Monk strategy: The class can be built according to the comfort, knowledge and desire of the player. There is no set in stone skill-build that will determine immediate success or failure. To each their own. I would, however, like to point out that there are certain abilities that seems to go within every monk build I've come across -- Breath of Heaven and Serenity. These two abilities are crucial for sustaining dps under any sort of spiked or continuous pressure.

It seems difficult to imagine a hardcore build that would not include these two-- what I would call-- 'safety nets'. I would like to see if someone has been successful and daring enough to not go without either or both of these abilities.

On a related point, there are seven passives that seem to be floating around as the most desired for the hardcore monk in terms of progression: 1. New Death Experience, 2. Transcendence, 3. Seize the Initiative, 4. One with Everything, 5. Chant of Resonance, 6. The Guardians path, 7. Resolve

1. There have been a few forum topics discussing the benefits and detriments of New Death Experience and I would like to say that it is indeed a safety-net that is great for the boss that you aren't sure you can handle. As for progression that does not encounter a huge set-up boss fight, I do not recommend using it as there are plenty of other passives that can generate greater survivability for the Monk overall.

2. Transcendence seems to be a lil' cookie-cutter, much like Breath of Heaven and Serenity. It is incredibly useful as we can spend spirit as a way to keep ourselves alive. I highly recommend this passive at all levels.

3. Seize the Initiative generally gives 10% (on avg. in my experience) or more reduction to incoming damage from ALL sources as it increases armor. It is based off your dexterity, which also increases damage and dodge. If we go back to Dinglez build, which is focused on dodge, I would like to point out that he currently is again killing the Butcher while possessing a mere 28k life. He chooses to stack dexterity OVER vitality, which is proving to be alarmingly effective as his health never seems to drop.

4. One with Everything is a crucial talent for those that either don't have the All resist gear of the HC wealthy, or simply have gear that happens to have a lot of a 'specific' resist. In the case that you are extremely well geared and have tons of All Resist, this talent may not be necessary (see Dinglez above).

5. Chant of Resonance is a great way to get that passive spirit regeneration you may be lacking in your build/gear. It is absolutely fundamental for people seeking to power through a place without stopping (see Goblin farming, inferno above). I found this passive to be great for leveling and making up the gear disadvantage of not having spirit regeneration. However, I do not recommend it for end game progression.

6. The Guardian's Path has been mentioned briefly in some other forum posts floating around in hardcore. It is only useful if you dual-wield or use a 2hander. Here I will get into the pros and cons of each. Dual wielding increases atk speed by 15% on average, which is a marginal dps increase in most cases. This attack speed also means that you will be regenerating your spirit faster, which is incredibly important for healing yourself (with transcendence and other abilities), staying alive (tempest rush, dashing strike escapes) and dealing damage. A 2hander, on the other hand, is generally slower and does not give this 15% bonus. This means spirit will regenerate slower. However, a 2hnder will always hit harder for top end damage which means that your spirit costing DAMAGE attacks (I.e. Lashing Tail Kick) will do loads more. There have been a couple cases of using 2handers for inferno progression (look at Inferno Belial post), and plenty of instances where well known players use 2handers for early leveling and progression (see Catrenia at twitch). Even if using a 2hander or dual wielding better suits your specifications better than sword and board, also consider that this ability is standing in the way of many other crucial and semi-cookie cutter passives.

7. Resolve. I have received a lot of whispers asking about resolve as a viable passive and have known more than a few monks who leveled almost all the way to 60 while using it. Resolve decreases enemy damage by 25% for 2.5 seconds, which is awesome. But only if you are hitting the target. Most of the time I find that I am retreating/using deadly reach or other abilities to out range melee mobs before they can even hit me. If I do not attack a given mob for 2.5 seconds, this passive becomes nullified. Furthermore, I have found that in most cases I do not need to worry about the mobs I CAN hit, but the ones that are far in the back that I cannot. The ones that I can, are often manageable simply through dodging, interrupting abilities, and managing life.
Reply Quote
I'm doing Act 1 hell atm, and have been dual wielding since level 1. My question is how many of you prefer 1 handed and shield over dual wielding and why? Does the extra armor and block chance really trump fast attacks/spirit generation, and if you're using it, "The Guardians Path"? Obviously for some it's personal preference, but I'd love to hear some pros/cons for 1 handed/shield from people with experience doing so. I feel like there are many other skills and passives that can boost your armor significantly enough while keeping to dual wielding, but then again im only on Act 1 hell.

Any insight would be greatly appreciated!
Reply Quote
I'm doing Act 1 hell atm, and have been dual wielding since level 1. My question is how many of you prefer 1 handed and shield over dual wielding and why? Does the extra armor and block chance really trump fast attacks/spirit generation, and if you're using it, "The Guardians Path"? Obviously for some it's personal preference, but I'd love to hear some pros/cons for 1 handed/shield from people with experience doing so. I feel like there are many other skills and passives that can boost your armor significantly enough while keeping to dual wielding, but then again im only on Act 1 hell.

Any insight would be greatly appreciated!


I'm in a similar boat as you, so instead of speaking from experience I'm speaking from theory. So take what I say with a grain of salt.

Until I got to Hell I tried stacking whatever I could to boost IAS, including dual-wielding. The synergy between LoH, spirit regen, and pure dps was outstanding.

Now that I'm in Hell I'm still trying to stack IAS, but for the first time I'm using a shield -- the reason being that I can't just plow through everything like I could previously because I don't have the gear for it. Right now I need more dmg mitigation, but once I gear up enough dmg mitigation from other armor slots, I will definitely go back to DWing.

And I think therein lies the balance point: If you don't have the gear to steamroll, you kind of have to stack as much defense as possible (considering this is HC), but as you get that gear sorted for where you're at, DW (with the aforementioned synergies between IAS and LoH, spirit regain, and pure dps) seems to always be the ultimate goal.

That's how I'm approaching it anyway. I'd love some monks who have actually geared well for HC Inferno to comment on whether or not this holds with their experiences.
Reply Quote
06/02/2012 06:36 PMPosted by Klipt
And I think therein lies the balance point: If you don't have the gear to steamroll, you kind of have to stack as much defense as possible (considering this is HC)


Being forced to go 1hand/shield for inferno would put a :( on my face.
Reply Quote

Please report any Code of Conduct violations, including:

Threats of violence. We take these seriously and will alert the proper authorities.

Posts containing personal information about other players. This includes physical addresses, e-mail addresses, phone numbers, and inappropriate photos and/or videos.

Harassing or discriminatory language. This will not be tolerated.

Forums Code of Conduct

Report Post # written by

Reason
Explain (256 characters max)

Reported!

[Close]