Diablo® III

Snare Doctor - New comprehensive guide inside

Background Info

I thought I'd share a new build I've been using and been having a lot of success with. A little background information. Since the beginning of 1.0.4 I've primarily been using pet builds which have been really effective but also kinda boring. With Zombie dogs/Garg, Spirit walk/Soul harvest, I was left with only 2 offensive spells. Most of my time was spent hiding behind my pets, spamming Firebomb and Acid Cloud. So when I started experimenting with new builds I wanted something a bit more engaging. The idea behind this build goes back to the Splinter dart kiting days. When pets weren't viable, and Witch Doctors had to rely on slows and deterrents to keep enemies at bay.

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Build

http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/witch-doctor#bRZUdk!cWU!YZaacZ

As you can see, the idea behind the build is to stack as many slow spells as possible while your corpse spiders and acid cloud eat away at your enemies

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Skills

Corpse Spiders/Medusa Spiders: Corpse spiders are an amazing primary for a number of reasons. I will forgo the theorycrafting and just explain the basic reasons for why this is a great spell.

a) Scales really well with attack speed. With 1.95 attack speed, I'm able to get 7 or 8 jars out at a time. With 4 spiders per jar, that's 28-32 spiders out at any given time. The medusa rune gives a 25% chance to slow the enemy by 60%. From my testing, with that many spiders out, your enemies will always be effected by the 60% slow.

b) Very low mana cost (5 mana per jar)

c) Fire and forget play style. You can throw jars of spiders on or around the enemy with very little wasted DPS. Especially since your enemies will be slowed and fairly contained most of the time.

d) Great single target damage compared to other primaries.

Acid Cloud/Lob Blob Bomb: I always like to run Acid cloud in my builds for obvious reasons. Great AoE damage, and great proc coefficient for LoH returns. I prefer Lob blob rune because it acts and functions similarly to corpse spiders. There is very little wasted DPS, the blobs can maneuver around walls, and the blobs can actually block targets in tight corridors and entrances.

Grasp of the Dead/Unbreakable Grasp: A spell frequently used in 1.0.2 and 1.0.3 when a lot of Witch Doctor's were using Spellful's Splinter guide. It's a great slow, 80%, which will be stacking with the 60% from your Medusa spiders. Has a pretty large radius, and a relatively short cool down. Overall a great utility spell that also provides some DPS.

Spirit Walk/Soul Harvest: Pretty self explanatory. Two spells that most Witch Doctors keep in their arsenal. I run with the Jaunt rune for the extra duration, great for resurrecting allies in uber fights. And I run with Vengeful Spirit for some extra damage, very effective if you're already 5 stacked.

Wall of Zombies/Unrelenting Grip: Excellent deterrent, and another 60% slow if you use the Unrelenting Grip rune. Wall of Zombies, unlike Grasp of the Dead, does great damage (800% over 5 seconds) and can make an enemy completely immobile if you place the wall correctly.

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Passives

Passives are completely optional but I find the three I'm using work best. As you can see, I'm using two mana savers (Blood Ritual, which I also use for the extra health regen, and Vision Quest). I use these to off-set the mana increase I take from using PtV but also because this build can be mana intensive.

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Gear

Gearing is not much different than what is required in other builds with the exception of a few things.

1) Attack speed is very critical for reasons stated above. More attack speed equals faster cast animations, and more spiders out at any given time. This is one of the few builds that makes good use of attack speed. 1H/off-hand is definitely recommended.

2) Mana regen is also very critical, because even with
two mana saving passives, I still find mana to be a limitation. Which is why I have 12 mana per second on my Mojo and 20 from the Zunimassa 4 piece.

3) Capped run speed. You want to have at least 24% run speed to make kiting and stutter stepping even easier.

4) Echoing Fury. This is completely optional, but I find this weapon has a lot of synergy with the spells used in the build.

a) It's a great 1 hand weapon with great attack speed. A good roll can yield really high damage (1300+) with critical hit damage and a socket.

b) You get free CC that procs surprisingly often. I know a lot of people don't care for the fear because enemies often scatter and have to be chased down. However, because this build incorporates so many slows, the fear really works toward your advantage. Your enemies, for the most part, stay contained within one area. With 120% or even 60% slow, enemies aren't going to be moving all over the place. Also, enemies cannot attack while they're feared, which is really nice when going against hard hitting mobs or elites.

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Follower

Another thing worth mentioning is follower selection. I've always preferred the Templar for my WD, especially when I'm not running pets. If you're going to take the Templar, I highly suggest using Intervene (taunts enemies) and Intimidate (enemies who hit or are hit by your Templar are slowed by an additional 60%)

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Conclusion

Overall, I find this build to be a great alternative to bears and whatever else people are using these days. It works well with high MP levels, as well as for quickly farming low MP levels. I will try to post some videos in the future so people can see the build in action, but my recommendation is to just try it out yourself. It's a lot of fun.

EDIT: After some further testing with Wall of Zombies, it appears that enemies who are feared cannot get "stuck" in the wall. However, this does not mean the spell is useless, just not as effective if you're using Echoing Fury. A good alternative, IMO, is BBV with the Slam dance rune. It's very easy to stay within the radius for it's full duration and is overall a great DPS CD. The attack speed bonus becomes a lot more valuable when using a spell like corpse spiders.
Edited by Zand#1768 on 2/28/2013 8:22 AM PST
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It definitely looks interesting. A couple of questions;

1. How many spiders to acid cloud are you throwing?

2. What's the highest MP level you can use this on and still be fairly efficient at killing things?

3. Without pets how do you keep from being mobbed by elites? Don't you need bears to keep them off of you?
Edited by skywalkerfx#1247 on 11/24/2012 11:07 PM PST
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It definitely looks interesting. A couple of questions;

1. How many spiders to acid cloud are you throwing?

2. What's the highest MP level you can use this on and still be fairly efficient at killing things?

3. Without pets how do you keep from being mobbed by elites? Don't you need bears to keep them off of you?


1) The lob blob bomb rune for Acid cloud only allows you to have 3 blobs out at a time. And the DoT from the blob doesn't stack, so it's best to have 3 blobs spread out at all times. Each blob lasts 5 seconds, which means you'll be spending most of your time spamming corpse spiders.

2) This works well all the way up to MP10, assuming you have enough DPS.

3) Kiting/stutter stepping. This becomes really easy because not only will you have really fast cast animations (from high APS) but your enemies will be stacked with an assortment of slows. And all of the spells listed have great range which allows you to keep a safe distance from the enemy.
Edited by Zandalar#1242 on 11/25/2012 11:13 AM PST
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Good post OP, I can verify this is a nice build. Ive been using a similar method for a long time. Im not crazy about wall of zombies, I love the spell, just hate the long cool down. Im just making use of my attack speed. Spiders, Darts, or firebombs are crazy fast.
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It is an interesting build idea. I'm not interested in stacking attack speed right now, as I just got a really nice LS Skorn, but it seems like a fun build and I'll definitely keep it in mind as I've been a spiders user for a long time.
Edited by skywalkerfx#1247 on 11/25/2012 12:28 PM PST
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quick note
add Grin Reaper to the EQ list and you have 3x GOTD
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Do the slows work on Ubers?

This might make a fun variation to bring to Uber runs. Not quite a stun, but perma-slow is nice, too.
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quick note
add Grin Reaper to the EQ list and you have 3x GOTD


This is something I want to play around with. Of course it's a big DPS loss for most people, but I'll try to find a decent one with crit and a socket.

Do the slows work on Ubers?

This might make a fun variation to bring to Uber runs. Not quite a stun, but perma-slow is nice, too.


Yes it does work.
Edited by Zandalar#1242 on 11/26/2012 8:30 AM PST
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11/25/2012 11:07 AMPosted by Zandalar
2) This works well all the way up to MP10, assuming you have enough DPS.


Are you saying that as a hypothetical or are you in MP 10 with this build? Reason I ask is because I've done a similar build like this before, right down to using Medusa, Acid Cloud, GotD, and PtV, but have trouble doing anything more than MP7 with it.
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2) This works well all the way up to MP10, assuming you have enough DPS.


Are you saying that as a hypothetical or are you in MP 10 with this build? Reason I ask is because I've done a similar build like this before, right down to using Medusa, Acid Cloud, GotD, and PtV, but have trouble doing anything more than MP7 with it.


I guess hypothetical. I've only used this build up to MP8 but that's only because I don't have the DPS for MP10. However, I'm certain, with the way MP scales, that this build would do perfectly fine on MP10
Edited by Zandalar#1242 on 11/26/2012 9:01 AM PST
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11/26/2012 09:00 AMPosted by Zandalar
I guess hypothetical. I've only used this build up to MP8 but that's only because I don't have the DPS for MP10. However, I'm certain, with the way MP scales, that this build would do perfectly fine on MP10


Right but people are usually interested in what is actually being done with the build for tangibility sakes vs. what could be done in a futuristic world. Theoretically any build can be effective with the proper gearing.
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I guess hypothetical. I've only used this build up to MP8 but that's only because I don't have the DPS for MP10. However, I'm certain, with the way MP scales, that this build would do perfectly fine on MP10


Right but people are usually interested in what is actually being done with the build for tangibility sakes vs. what could be done in a futuristic world. Theoretically any build can be effective with the proper gearing.


My experience with MP8 tells me that this build will be just as effective on MP10. And it's not really theoretical when it comes down to small incremental changes in numbers.
Edited by Zandalar#1242 on 11/26/2012 11:36 AM PST
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Afternoon bump.
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Very interesting.

I would love to test it out if I had more IAS gear. Is there a cap on the slow amount on elites?
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Very interesting.

I would love to test it out if I had more IAS gear. Is there a cap on the slow amount on elites?


As far as I know, there is no cap.
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quick note
add Grin Reaper to the EQ list and you have 3x GOTD


So I just tried out a Grin Reaper and unfortunately the slow from GOTD doesn't stack. So while having the mimics out will give you more coverage, they wont give you 240% slow :(
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Evening bump.
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