(2) What to look for / What to avoid1011 Dex, 700 Vit, 421 Resists (lower because of Inna’s Temperance), 2087 Armor12%MS, 9% IAS, 1% Critical Hit Chance all from Inna’s Temperance
2.1 Defence Slots (Shoulders, Chest, Belt, Pants, Boots)
With these items, the only stats that can possibly help you in your DPS is Dex (not including legendaries and sets). So focus intently on building a strong defence in these slots, which includes double stacking resistances and +armor whenever possible (or various combination). When looking at resists, try to get primary resist + AR > 100, but the higher the better. Be aware that the max roll on primary resist is 60 whereas the max roll on AR is 80. If you are able to get total resists in these slots > 500, it's good, but more is always better.
Also bear in mind max rolls of some of the attributes in each of these slots. Of note, max vit roll in chest and pants is 300, so gear accordingly and max dex rolls on boots are 300. This can give you some ideas on which attribute to focus on in each of these slots. Make sure you get all the sockets you can in chest and pants, as these can really help to balance your stats down the road (I will explain this further later).
A word about boots -- MS is important, but considered a luxury for young monks. Once you are able to farm MP levels easily, it’s time to search for MS boots, unless you already have MS elsewhere (like in Inna’s Temperance or Lacuni’s Prowlers).
In my 100K dps monk, I spent a total of 18M for these items, bearing in mind the Inna’s Temperance drop that is not factored into costs, and yielded the following key stats:
2.2 Hybrid Slots (Gloves, Bracers, Helm)
These items have a mix of offensively-minded stats with regular defensive ones. Helms and bracers are important for the critical hit chance, so that has to be tops on your list of stats, And then beyond that, similar principles apply as what I stated earlier about balancing dex, vit, resists and armor.
Gloves are special, because they also give you access to critical hit chance, critical hit damage, and attack speed -- the so-called trifecta of weapon damage. If you can get AR > 700 in other gear, you shouldn't have to worry about resistances too much here. Life sustain (LPS or Extra health on globes) on gloves are generally a waste of an attribute, IMO. As you get more set pieces down the road, you may need to start putting resistances and armor here to compensate for lack of those in the core pieces. But for now, try to keep them off if you can.
In my 100K dps monk, I spent a total of 9.75M for these items, and yielded the following key stats:
583 Dex (incl Inna 130 Dex Set Bonus), 165 Vit, 133 Resists, 1421 Armor, 19.5% Critical Hit Chance (Gloves, Helm & Bracers), 8% IAS (Gloves), 15% Life (Helm)
2.3 Offence Slots (Amulet, Ring, Weapons)
This is where gearing becomes fun, and this is where you will spend the vast majority of your gold, in relation to the rest of your gear. In the ideal scenario, you have all of your vit and damage mitigation at high levels elsewhere. Your focus here is on doing whatever you can to up your DPS.
In weapons, you are looking for a healthy combination of weapon damage, attack speed, critical hit damage, open socket, LS (currently quite expensive on AH), and hidden DPS modifiers that don't affect paper doll DPS (look to a WKL or Sever as examples).
+ Average damage (+XX-YY weapon damage), crit hit chance, crit hit damage, open sockets on weapons, attack speed and dex are all of highest priorities for jewellery. If you feel a strong need for some LoH, try looking for it in an amulet. Beware though, I don’t think you would be able to get a high damage increase AND LoH, chiefly because you may be competing with higher-tiered monks for the same gear. I would suggest +average damage, dex, critical hit chance and attack speed on rings, and +average damage, dex, critical hit chance and critical hit damage on amulets.. Why? Because the upper limits of attack speed is the same between rings and amulet, but with critical hit damage, rings offer you half of what amulet would offer. To me, that screams search for decent critical hit damage in amulet, and looking for attack speed in rings.
I’ve also read (courtesy of stayfrosty) that a good rule of thumb to evaluate usefulness of +average damage is to take the average number and count that as critical hit damage. So an average increase on weapon damage of +20-40 weapon damage is roughly equivalent to 30%CD, depending on your stats, weapon speed, etc. Traditionally, +average damage jewellery is undervalued in the AH -- probably because most people don’t really understand this stat very well at all.
Just a quick point (and refer to my spreadsheet) to illustrate the value of gloves, gems and jewellery. In my 100K dps monk, if I were to eliminate all attack speed (leaving it with a base 1.4x1.15 for DW bonus), all additional critical hit chance (leaving me with the base 5%) and leave my weapons alone (no gems), my DPS would drop down to 27K dps. That means that you increase your damage output just under 4X simply through glove, jewellery and gems (and to a limited extent, helm and bracers). So it would make sense to spend a proportionate amount of gold on that part of your monk. Simply put, weapons do so little in comparison to jewellery and gems. A half-decent weapon can take you far - definitely doesn’t have to be super.
With weapons, it is worth sacrificing weapon damage for higher critical hit damage, as that can give you a net increase in total DPS. This becomes more important as you increase your critical hit chance, and this can give you much bigger DPS boost over time. Socketed weapons are an absolutely necessity because this allows your weapon to grow with you. Your jewellery & gems will be upgraded along the way, and thus, your DPS. I would generally advise against picking up any weapon without critical hit damage AND OS. And that combination of relatively high inherent critical hit chance (>80%) and decent DPS (~900 dps) need not be expensive, especially if it is not paired up with LS or LoH -- under 2M could score you a nice one if you play your cards right. Try to put a little dex in your search terms too.
The question can come up -- should I opt for a high DPS weapon with no built-in critical hit damage but an OS or a lower DPS weapon with critical hit damage and OS. The answer is: it depends. Cost is one factor. One big factor is how much critical hit chance you are sporting or hope to sport. The other is how much you value high crit damage. Remember, higher crit damage means higher fluctuations in your damage. So higher DPS weapon would keep your overall DPS higher, but variations less, so your highest high may not be as high as the lower DPS weapon with high total critical hit damage... but nor are the lowest of your crits (or lowest of your non-crits). Higher fluctuations means higher potential life return / hit if you have LS; higher fluctuations in damage mean nothing if you have LoH. In the end, it’s a matter of your weapon cost, personal playstyle, and what you’d prefer to see. Bottom line is that in any weapon you get, an OS is crucial. Don’t use one without it. And use a damage calculator (or a spreadsheet) to get the projected DPS before you drop gold on it. It’ll save you a lot of gold / money.
In my 100K dps monk, I spent a total of 6.5M gold on weapons, and 12.1M gold on jewellery, yielding the following key stats:
Weapons: 196 Dex, 2.9% LS, 1.4 Average Weapon Spd, Average DPS 874, 323% ChDJewellery: 82 Dex, 17% Chd, 16.5% IAS, 62% ChD
2.4 Sockets or no sockets?
For the chest and pants, absolutely yes. Get max sockets whenever you can. Why? What sockets allow you to do is to look at eachother item as a combination of dex + vitality. The ultimate place to be would likely be after putting together the defensive slots and hybrid slots is to have 2 or 3 emeralds in and the rest in amethysts. You can upgrade some pieces without having to touch your chest or pant piece because of those slots Having high vit would allow you to buy some gear with just dex as a primary stat and allow you go more full-out attack. Please note that the highest max vit on chest & pants are 300 each, while dex is at 200. Take advantage of that when you are searching for chest and pants armor.
Sockets in helms are highly advised -- use them to stick in a 15% life gem, and that will reduce your vit requirements as you search for gear, making the rest of your gear search cheaper. The gem means that you can now look for a total of 850 vit instead of 1000 vit to get 35K life. That socket is a huge investment. Take advantage of it. If you don’t use it for life because you have enough HP in your gear, consider using it for experience bonus.
I am not yet convinced in the need for sockets in jewellery at this point. Presumably, you will have taken care of all of your damage mitigation and vitality stats in the aforementioned areas. You need dex, but not vit. You don’t need the added flexibility here yet, so don’t pay up for it.
2.5 Concluding Statements
In my opinion, it is important to ensure that all of your defences (vit, AR and Armor) are sealed up by the time you are ready to search for jewellery. If you are able to do this, you are freed up to search for jewellery that will increase damage output and not have to worry about damage mitigation. If you get jewellery with some of those defensive stats, they are considered a bonus, but not needed for future upgrades. This makes for easier gear searches, and in some cases, way cheaper because you are asking less of your jewellery and you are likely not competing against higher tiered monks at that point.
Edited by Nameless#1537 on 11/29/2012 8:21 AM PST