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There was a time, before I had kids, that I would wrap up a beautiful post complemented by pivot tables, professor farnsworth equations, and spoonfed screenshots; But for now, it's just the basics.
After spending alot of gold and testing gear + skill setups, i've found a build that I felt was just too awesome not to share. For now, for lack of patience (also due to children), i've dubbed it Bear Barrage. Pretty creative eh?
This is really unique at least when compared to what an estimated 90% of WD's are currently using and because of that many people might think it sucks. All I ask is if you got the required gear, give it a shot, you'll be very suprised. Again this is for high mp levels as your much better off running your DPS gear / setup in lower mp levels.
[This is the build]
I chose leeching dogs over Garg purely because Garg hurts me so bad on reflects, even with 3% life steal. In my opinion, dogs also hold more mobs and hold them better. Haven't looked back since I switched.
Horrify with Armor Rune is also very under valued. I use this for reflect packs when spirit walk is down, it's great.
[The over-all summary / goal...]
The ability to spam bears near infinitely for the purpose of damage, and more importantly, life steal.
The first thing you need to accept is that our going to lose a sizable amount of DPS without PTV and by using the Zunimessa set instead of more DPS focused gear. I went from 205k Dps with PTV to 130k.
4 Piece Zunimessa Set (Mana regen on Helm)
2 Piece Manajuma Set (Optional really. But you need 3% life steal on weapon and 14 Regen on Mojo)
Rush of Essence + Barrage is severely under rated in my opinion. Everytime you cast Barrage, you gain a stacking mana regen, the highest of which i've had was 235 mana per second. This tied with the Spirit is Willing rune, you get mana back if the barrage actually hits. It's also worth noting that even though your using barrage primarily as a a mana stacking buff, it also does great damage. Personally, a good barrage crit yields me 700k. I believe this is the best single target spell we have, though I would not be surprised when someone presents a spreadsheet formula proving otherwise. Barrage also travels through waller's walls, which as a bear user, you probably understand the frustration there. 40 yards.. awesome, etc, try it.
Using it is pretty self explanatory. If they are out of range of bears, spam barrage, which you can do so infinitely by the way. Bear to your heart's content to stay alive while doing a fair amount of damage, while working in some barrages in there to keep the mana regen flowing. This post does the build no justice, try it, it's awesome.
Feel free to "like" my build on the d3db site I linked if you digged it, so I can feel all internet cool.
TL;DR - Rush of Essence + Spirit Barrage (Spirit is Willing Rune) coupled with a little mana regen = near infinite bears thus infinite life leech. It's awesome, do it.
Edited by SiCo#1247 on 11/29/2012 3:54 AM PST
bookmarking... though I read through it all! Looks like a good build to try. I am using Mana Spiders with Vision Quest though, but I take it your build is "sorta" the same idea... but instead Barrage does "more" than the spider?
In my opinion and experiences, yes barrage does far more damage then spiders. Again, I haven't done any in-depth mathematical testing, so I could be wrong. I'm just going by what feels right and works good. The mana regen on the mojo/helm/zuni set bonus tied together with blood ritual is essential for it to work the way i'm describing.
By the way, my defensive gear (zuni set and manajumas etc) is really welfare, putting me at about 125k dps. With better rolls, like a high end socketed manajumas, I honestly feel like this build would shine even greater. Also if you try to view my profile I may either be in this set or in my dps set for mp1 runs just so your not confused.
Failed to mention this build works great for mp7 ubers for me as well.
This is a nice build, I may give it a shot later. Right now im running a WoS AC build that seems to be working pretty well for ranged combat. Between my life steal and LoH it works great. RoE is a great passive can spam WoS all day long and have more than enough mana to drop AC for mobs.
I am using my own variation of this build. Stacking a few +SB damage items, my soul barrage crits for 1.4k+250k per "well of soul" with 5 stacks soul harvest and totem down on elites (SOJ and +dmg to elites on mojo). So if I get everything criting, I am hitting targets for roughly 2.1 million per cast. Not to shabby, if you ask me. Bears is a must, and is used for the reasons you said above. My mana pool is large enough to sustain bears for long enough to kill most packs.
I don't use dogs or Garg. I feel that with proper play you don't need them. I rely on positioning and good use of kiting. I am using well of souls instead of the mana regen barrage, because mana is really not an issue.
I like your idea with horrify for reflect packs, I am going to try that in replace of grasp of the dead.
Do not try this build if you do not have the gear to handle it. You need damage, and you need mana regeneration. I would say the proper route to go would be Zuni's String of Skulls and a Visage of Guiya, or whatever instead of the Fetch. That way you can get +crit and mana regen, as apposed to just mana regen on your Vision. Finding a good String is difficult though, especially with my desired requirements. +12% or more SB damage, 270 avg. damage, +14 mana regen, and 180+ int with vit and 9.0%+ crit chance.
Gonna cost a pretty penny when I find one. If anyone does have one, hit me up and we can arrange something.
I am also willing to trade my beautiful Tal Rasha's Allegiance for a Mara's Kaleidoscopic with 12%+soul barrage damage high crit/crit damage/avg. dmg, if one out there exists.
Edited by Megorix#1129 on 11/29/2012 6:42 AM PST
I have been using a very similar spec for a few weeks now. To me SB is a much better option than spiders because the dmg you do when casting it is much greater and you don't have to use VQ. RoE makes any rune for SB a mana positive cast, I haven't tried the The spirit is willing rune yet which should be even better mana regen.
I use WoS and my strategy is similar, but when I run out of mana I go solely to WoS. At that point there should only be 1 or 2 mobs left except for in MP10. I'm going to give SiW a shot for that since that was my biggest hangup there. (well and those nasty reflects.....)'
Similar to the OP I went from a ~180k PvT spider/bears build to this at 138k and I like the results much better. Give it a try, its quite good.
One note: I only have 1 pc of + SB gear. I can imagine that this would be amazing with 2-3 pieces of + SB or ZB skill gear.
Your cheap spamable spell is SB if you have RoE as a passive. Your can literally spam it forever with 4pc + 1 mana regen, and RoE and BR passives.
I take GF as my third passive, but I use WoS not SiW. Basically when I go oom from bear spam I run around casting WoS and picking up health globes and I'm full again.
Its definately a different playstyle than spiders (toss anywhere and it hits something), but once you have the aiming of SB down, its an amazing skill.
SB works well with AC too. I used to play a pure ranged build with both that worked amazingly for lower and mid MP levels. AC white trash, SB for elites.
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