4 - Itemization
Balance Is Everything
Itemization at low-mid tier gameplay is all about getting a little bit of everything.
IE make sure to balance your offense and defense and not to go all out on either.
The exception being if you're extremely rich and you can afford to heal off health globes.
Quick Inferno Gear Tips by item slot:Amulets
Key Enchantments: Crit %, IAS, Crit Dmg, Avg Dmg, MF
Try to get at least 2 or 3 of the above.
You can think of an amulet as two rings. There are a few exceptions to this rule though.
Most notably avg dmg & IAS aren't quite as good on amulets as it is on rings. Crit damage would be better.
Rings and amulets go through phases, sometimes an affix is cheaper on rings, then sometimes cheap on amulets.Rings
A ring is basically half an amulet.
As mentioned earlier, avg dmg and IAS are a bit better to get on rings than they are on amulets.Helmet
The helmet is host to a lot of interesting enchantments.
And as such, it is one of the items I am willing to forgo resists/dex/vit on.
Key enchantments are: Spirit Regen, Crit %, Socket, Sweeping Wind/FoT Damage.
Like with amulets, don't expect to get more than 2-3 key enchantments without paying a huge price.
also note that rare spirit stones cap at 4.5% crit chance, whereas helms cap at 6% but dont have spirit regen.Shoulders & Belts
I lumped these 2 items together because they lack many special enchantments.
Sure there's chance to freeze and chance to chill (haha get it? COLD shoulders? haha)
They do have access to life % though.
Due to their lack of key enchantments, I use these two item slots for resists, vitality, and dexterity.
The fact that they can roll vit and life % makes them particularly good for keeping your life pool up.Chest Armor & Pants
Sockets are a must have at high end of play, but you can consider getting one without them if you're poor.
Chest armor has the unique "reduce damage from elites" enchantment.
This enchantment is nice as it's potent and fairly underpriced.
And of course, things like magic find, health from globes, radius, and life regen are nice touches.
Chest armor and pants are able to roll up to 300 vitality ignoring sockets
Pants and chests cap at 300 vitality, so they're okay places to get vitality on.
But these two item slots tend to be very expensive, so don't expect too much utility out of them.Boots
Movement speed is a must have enchantment for farming these days.
It's extremely expensive, but for good reason.
They are a good source of dexterity as rare boots roll up to 300 dex.
Movement speed is the only key enchantment, so focus on resists, dex, vit.
And if you can manage, so spare enchantments like life regen, health from globe, etc.Gloves
Gloves, like helmets are host to a lot of great enchantments.
And like boots, they have access to upwards of 300 dexterity.
Key enchantments are: Crit %, IAS, Crit dmg.
Be willing to forgo resists, dex, and vit for these 3 key enchantments.
Crit % is a must have on gloves, you may consider dropping IAS or crit dmg for better resists/dex/vit.
But make sure you have at least 2 of the key enchantments, if not all 3.Bracers
The key enchantment on this item slot is crit chance, you must have crit chance.
Don't be afraid to get a 6% crit chance bracer with only 30 dex, if the resists and vit are good.
Use a dps calculator and make sure you're getting good bang for your buck.
Main Itemization Guide:
2 handers in 1.04
2 Handers can easily be the best DPS in the game now *Cough skorn*Seven Sided Strike
is a must have for a 2H user.Blinding flash
has poor synergy with low attack speed weapons, so avoid it unless using flying dragon.Wave of light
does not particularly favor fast or slow attack speed weapons, it is bad with IAS armor though.
And since IAS is extremely important on a 2H build for the extra DPS and spirit, I would avoid Wave of light.Mystic ally's
attack speed scales with yours, so it also doesn't favor high attack speed either.
But air ally may be a nice way for you to boost your spirit regen rate.
Don't get LoH on jewelry, low attack speed means it's not as good as on a 1H or DW build.
Instead, try to get LoH on your weapon since you can get more than 1000+ LoH on your 2H's these days.
2H's are very cost effective at low tiers right now, and I highly recommend it for new players.
BIS 2 handers are pretty obnoxiously expensive though *cough skorn*
Dual Wielding is no longer the only endgame Monk
Back in 1.03 DW was the monk endgame.
I won't say more on DW because I feel like it's both straightforward and common knowledge.
Sword and Board
I thought sword and board was the weakest setup in patch 1.03, and I still think so in 1.04
If anything it's even less useful since mobs are not as deadly as they were in 1.03
the 1000 ish armor, block, and 100 ish resists decreases damage intake by about 0.75x
And you get an extra 10% crit chance for cyclones and such.
But 10% crit chance will not boost your DPS by as much as 15% attack speed from DW.
And if you feel defense is that important, you can just as easily get a LoH off hander.
I'm not going to say sword and board is bad because it isn't.
But I would never use it because I'd either rather be using 2H or rather be using DW.
If you must go sword and board, make sure you get a great shield for cheap.
At least 9% crit chance, maxed resists, dex, and vit in other words.
I believe block is overpriced atm, but it's definitely a great stat to have.
I'm not sure if block affects affixes such as desecrator and arcane.
I've done research and there are people claiming both.
Since I've never tested this myself, I'm not going to claim one or the other.
There exist only 1 item that can make sword and competitive in the endgame, and that's the Fist of Az'turrasq.
massive base damage and attack speed bonus make it the ultimate sword and board weapon.
The typical fist of az'turrasq is a poor DW weapon though, due to lack of enchantments that benefit both weapons.
It's possible to get a well rolled fist of az'turrasq that is good for DW, but those are extremely expensive
Vitality and life %
Vitality gets diminishing returns with itself, but makes each life % more effective.
Life % gets diminishing returns with itself, but makes each vitality more effective.
Kinda like how Crit % and crit dmg synergize with each other, so try to get a bit of both.
I used to recommend 30k-35k life in 1.03. But now I recommend 35k-40k in 1.04.
The white mobs are stronger in 1.04, and thus you need more life for those rare circumstances where
a bunch of white mobs attack you at the same time, dealing massive damage.
Don't be afraid to socket vit gems in order to meet this life pool quota.
Dexterity gets linear diminishing returns with itself, in terms of DPS
Dexterity gets increasing returns with itself, in terms of the effective health boost of dodge.
at 1900 dex, you need 20 dexterity to get 1% DPS.
at 2400 dex, you need 25 dexterity to get 1% DPS.
IE the equation is dex/100 + 1 = dex per 1% dps
Crit Chance & Damage
The amount of crit % and crit dmg you need to get 1% more dps depends on
how much crit % and crit dmg you already have.
But most monks these days will have around 35% crit chance and 200-300 ish crit damage.
In which case 5-6% crit damage is worth about 1% DPS.
and 1% crit damage will display as 1.5% DPS on your inventory screen, but due to cyclones:
will boost your dps in reality by something closer to 2%.
Once you hit 35% dex and 250% ish crit damage, these ratio's do not change drastically as you get more.
Resists and Armor
Resist and armor make you take less damage.
IE they boost your effective health.
Since monks heal set amounts of damage, they also boost your effective healing rate
This is unlike vitality and life%, which boost your effective health but don't really boost your effective healing.
(vit and life% do boost health globes tho, but lets ignore that)
at 700 resist, you need 10 resist to boost your effective health and healing by 1%
at 200 resist, you need 5 resist to boost your effective health and healing by 1%
IE the equation is (resist+300)/100 = resists per 1% boost to health and healing.
Life per Second
LPS is straightforward, and will be my unit of measure for other enchantments
Life on Hit
You do not get 100% of life on hit every punch, it varies from spirit generator to spirit generator
LoH favors AoE as you proc LoH for each enemy you hit with a single attack
But I recommend measuring single target LoH, since that's what you will get vs most elites.
And elites are what you want to gear up for.
LoH also scales with attack speed
So for example:
Lets say you have 1.75 attack speed and are using FoT
FoT gives you an extra 1.5x attack speed and generates 375% LoH every 3 punches
So 1.75*1.5*3.75/3 = 328% LoH per second.
Which means 100 life on hit would be worth up to 328 life per second to you.
Life per Spirit Spent
This one is fairly easy to calculate if you know your spirit regen rate.
Lets say you have have 1.75 attack speed, are using FoT, and have no passive spirit regen.
then 6 *1.75*1.5 = 15.75 spirit per second.
This means 10 LPSS is worth up to 157.5 LPS for you
I like to value LPSS a bit lower than the max LPS I calculate.
Because it's harder to use. And unlike LoH, it does not scale up with AoE.
Lifesteal is 5x less effective on inferno difficulty
But most players know that now, so lets proceed to the sample calculation:
Lets say we want to examine 3% lifesteal on a traditional thunderclap/cyclone/overawe build.
This build generates about 6x more DPS than listed on the paper doll
Lets say this player does 50k paper doll DPS, then he heals 50k*3%*0.2*6 = 1800 LPS
Extra Health from Globes
Health globes are a solid and fairly underestimated healing enchantment:
It's extremely potent at high DPS, and is IMO the best healing enchantment on armor during End Game.
There are 2 types of globes, small and large.
Small globes heal 15% and large globes heal 35% of your total health
Large globes drop off elites every time you deplete 25% of their health.
Small globes have a chance of dropping from non-elites.
The drop chance varies from mob to mob
According to the brady guide:
Fallen Grunt: 5%
Fallen Hellhound: 12%
Fallen Maniac: 20%
Fallen Master: 80%
Blue packs have a 60% chance to drop health globes at 50% life and at death
Act 1 Elites have about 400k Health
Act 1 Champs and Act 2 Elites have about 800k Health
Act 2 Champs and Act 3 Elites have about 1600k Health
Act 3 Champs have about 3200k Health
If you know your actual DPS, you can use these numbers with some algebra to figure out how much
Life Per Second you get from health globes
But make sure you don't too much health globe bonuses, you only have so much health afterall.
Extra Health From Globe enchantments are very underrated, and thus cheap source of healing.
For example, lets say a character has 20k unbuffed DPS.
And this character is using Thunderclap/Bladestorm/Overawe
This character does about 80k actual DPS
He needs to take out 500k health on an act 2 elite to get 60% of a globe.
This takes him 6 seconds
So a +5000 Extra Health from Globe enchantment would give this player an equivalent
life per second of up to 500 LPS
But of course health globes are harder to use than LoH or LPS or LPSS.
So I would value +5000 Extra Health from Globe at about 500 life per second on this specific character.
Naturally it follows that this enchantment becomes more useful with higher DPS.
And less useful on higher difficulties.
PS: Dashing Strike is a great way to loot health orbs. You pick up any you travel over.
Attack Speed was nerfed in the early days of diablo 3
But it's still very good.
A boost to attack speed increases your DPS, your LoH healing, your stun rate, and your spirit generation.
It does suffer from diminishing returns, including the 15% IAS from dual wielding.
I recommend getting IAS on gloves and rings.
It's also available on amulets and a few legendaries.
I typically value 2% IAS at slightly less than 1% crit chance.
I recommend you read the game guide and the diablofans research page for this one:http://us.battle.net/d3/en/game/guide/items/equipment#magic-find
It's definitely worthwhile during early levels, but becomes completely worthless by lvl 80 paragon.
I personally never get magic find on any of my gear, as 80 paragon can be achieved in under 200 hours.
Even less than that with a barbarian. It's really up to you.
1% magic find and 1% exp gain are about the same in terms of farming efficiently.
Movement Speed is capped at 25%, so don't get more than that
It is available on boots and certain legendaries.
It's a very good enchantment because of the time it saves you.
And IMO a must have, in spite of it's hefty cost.
- Reduced Damage from Elites
This is a pretty good enchantment, and can sometimes be very cheap.
It's only available on chest armor, and it doesn't hurt to keep an eye out for it.
But the market is tiny, you will only find a decent chest with this on the AH every few days.
- Reduced Damage from Melee/Ranged
I'm not a fan of reduced damage from melee as anything in melee range tends to melt to monks.
Reduced damage from ranged is great as monks are much less mobile than WW barbarians.
And thus typically have to tank a lot of ranged attacks.
- Chance to X
Chill reduces enemy attack speed, freeze and stun stops enemies from moving altogether.
Blind stops them from attacking.
These debuffs last for at least 0.5 seconds, but never longer in 1.04.
You can calculate the proc rate and how much it will benefit you from there.
- Spirit Generation
The value of spirit generation is hard to quantify, but it's most significant purpose is travel.
You need spirit regen to spam dashing strike or tempest rush outside of combat.
It's only marginally useful in combat, except with 2H Builds which absolutely need the extra spirit regen.
IMO it's a pricelessly important stat in 1.04 late game since mobs die so fast you must be constantly moving.
- Bonus Damage to Skills
There are 3 key enchantments to note.
Bonus to lightning skills, bonus to sweeping wind, and bonus to fist of thunder.
Bonus to lightning skills affects both thunderclap and sweeping wind/cyclone.
I value 10% lightning skills at about 8.5% overall DPS.
Sweeping wind and fist of thunder both account for about 50% of your overall DPS in the mid game.
But at 1.04 end game, sweeping wind's AoE aspect makes it much more important, and is thus more valuable.
- Gold Find
one of the more useless enchantments.
Maybe it's worth dumping on your follower, but only maybe.