Diablo® III

Wind and Lightning Warp Mage

Well, here's my build. I call it the Wind and Lightning Warp Mage. Based off of my way unoptimized Warp Mage.

I'm pretty much a casual player so I haven't tweaked or built it to its full potential. So I can only give you generalities. Currently I do MP 2 Act IV runs. I don't go higher because I my DPS isn't high enough for me to go through the boredom of killing things slowly at the higher MP. The elites that give me the most trouble are the ones with (Vortex, Illusion, Knockback). These guys bounce me back and forth from Knockback to Vortex to Knockback like a basketball.

I've finished reading the wizard build sticky and I can say that this build is most similar to the Melee Wizard build or the CM/WW build depending on how you play.

First the Warp Mage.
The build focuses on the following skills.

*Slow Time (Any)
*Teleport (Any)
*Energy Armor (Force Armor)

After reading the wizard build sticky and much casual playing CM will be an end game skill to have, unless you can figure out how to mitigate the one shot kill of MP10 and still be able to be damaged by trash mobs to activate Illusionist passive.

You have 3 levels of defence.

The 1st defence is Slow Time coupled with Illusionist, this is an underrated skill. It slows ***ALL*** ranged attacks to a crawl and keeps monsters from catching up to you. If monsters even get to you, they get a 20% decrease in attack speed.

2nd defence is Energy Armor (Force Armor). Nothing in the game accept Damage over time can do more than 35% to you at time. EXCEPT damage that equals or exceeds your MAX life. Let me say it again in different words. Energy Armor (Force Armor) does not protect you from damage that equals or exceeds your MAX life.

3rd defence is Teleport coupled with Illusionist. This is a powerful combination. Except with very fast monsters, (in theory) nothing can touch you more than once.

This skill set up leaves you with 3 active skills slots for offence or a combination of more defence and offence. This also leaves you with 2 open passive skill slots. I believe these are enough open slots to mix and match skills with gear to have effective and unique play styles to play all the way to MP 10.

Ever want to actually watch your hydras kill something. Now you can. You ever want to just stand in the snow. Now you can. You know you want to be at ground zero when meteor hits. Now you can. All without perma-freeze.

Vitality - so far the best Vitality to have is enough Vitality so that every monster from the area you are playing can damage you for more that 15% of your life. That is the optimum Vitality. Why? because you are using the mechanic of Energy Armor (Force Armor) combined with Illusion to allow you to teleport safely every time you are hit. Trust me, you want everything on the screen to be able to hit you for more than 15% of your max life. Up to MP 5, 20k life seems to be optimum.

Other stats - The minimum +stat gear is zero. The maximum is whatever you want.

Minimum gear - enough +life/sec gear that heals 35% of your life at a rate that you feel comfortable with. You can replace that with life steal and life on hit. These two are probably better especially if you keep your life low. But they're also more expensive. I've found that you should have gear that regenerates your health at minimum of 10% max health per second. Up to at least Monster Power (5) 20k life with 2k life regen per sec will cover all your regen needs. But more is much better.

Choose your favorite range spell, set up your Slow Time (preferably Time Shell) and spam them with your range spell. As soon as you are hit. Teleport away, recast your time bubble, rinse and repeat.

Get up to them, put up Slow Time (which one depends on your gear) and bash away or put up your time bubble and let them come to you and bash away. Teleport ***BEHIND***them when they hit you once or twice. Rinse and repeat.

Wind and Lightning Time Mage
*Shock Pulse (Living Lightning)
*Energy Twister (Wicked Wind)
*Time Mage skills (Slow Time, Teleport, Energy Armor (Force Armor), Illusionist)

This is a fun build and probably is worse on the button mashing than what CMWW have to do. As far as I can tell this build is a jack of all trades for any given situation.

Now, enough with the generalities. Just like everyone else I struggled though the levels trying to find the best skills to use, so I never had a plan for the Time mage and things just came together. So I haven't tested this build in all of its variations. I went with the skills that worked with what I had in my inventory, which was nothing, but good life regen. I built the build because it protected the life regen gear that I was slowly building.

Now, here is the build as it pertains to my character farming Inferno Act 4 runs at MP 2. I also, rebuilt a friend's wizard who had 77k Damage and similar gear to mine and he was able to do Act 4 Inferno at MP 5 with no problems.

At the time I typed this, my gear gives me:
+1659 Int
2250 life per second
+551 all resists
+43.5% Critical hit chance
+362 Vitality
+19 Arcane Power on Critical Hit
4198 Armor
44k Damage
19k life
93 Arcane Power (Energy Armour is always on)
*Shock Pulse (Living Lightning) (Left Mouse Button)
*Teleport (Calamity) (Right Mouse Button)
*Diamond Skin (Crystal Shell) (1)
*Energy Twister (Wicked Wind) (2)
*Energy Armor (Force Armor) (3)
*Slow Time (Any except Perpetuity and Miasma) (4)
*Critical Mass


How I play
I use Living Lightning and my (+43% Critical Chance) gear to fuel my (+19 Acrane Power on Critical) gear. This helps me lay down a blanket of Wicked Winds. I don't have IAS gear. I use Slow Time to keep monsters in my blanket of Wicked Winds and my parade of Living Lightning. Slow Time also protects me from melee and ranged attacks. I'm constantly pushing out Living Lighting and Wicked Wind. As soon as something hits me, I teleport to within my own Slow Time bubble (I never leave the bubble area), I recast Slow Time and continue the parade and the blanket. With CM, I get more options on when I can teleport and cast Slow Time.

The life regen gear I have (about 2k life per sec) usually gets me to full health before the monsters can readjust and attack me again after I teleport away or teleport and blow them away. Remember, because of Force Armor, I can never be damaged for more than 35% of my max life at a time. At 20k life, I can only be damaged at the most 3k damage per monster hit. This refills in a little over a second. Because of Slow Time, every monster near me will have 20% reduction in monster attack speed so that under some circumstances, I can heal to full between monster swings too.

Teleport (Calamity) knocks back all monsters and they have to restart their attack animation or walk through my blanket of Wicked Winds and my parade of Living Lightning all over again. If they are close enough to attack me, their restart of their attack animation usually allows me to heal to full. Also Teleport (Calamity)/Illusionist/Critical Mass allows me to control the flow of combat. With this combination I can herd any knockbackable monster mob of any kind. If they can't be knocked back, then Teleport (Calamity)/Illusionist/Critical Mass/Force Armor/Diamond Shards) allows me to dance within them and/or around them to lead them to where I want them to go.

Diamond Shards is my panic button. Also, if I want to tank, Critical Mass and Living Lightning and Wicked Wind fuel my Diamond Shards to stay on continuously, while Illusionist/Teleport (Calamity) allows me to dance around them. Critical Mass with my (Acrance Power on Critical) gear also allows me to put more Wicked Wind down.

For things that don't knock back and can hit me multiple times faster than I can regen, then, if I want to tank them, I teleport behind them. They have to take the time to turn around and face me. This gives me time to regen and lay down wicked winds and forces them to stay in the winds. They hit me, I teleport behind them again damaging them with each teleport.

If they are too dangerous to tank, I let them hit me and teleport away from them to just outside my time bubble, recast my bubble and make them walk through my winds. Or I can be more reckless and teleport behind them to keep them in the same area.

Elite packs are no different from the regular mobs, they just have more life and take longer to kill. With Teleport (Calamity), I force them to go where I want them to go and they die in my wind and lightning.

Evocation in conjunction with Critical Mass and a high critical chance rate gives me fuel for crowd control via Teleport (Calamity).

This build is weak against:
1) Damage Over Time, because that damage doesn't trigger the Illusionist passive and (at least for me) you get so used to teleporting that you forget to run away.
2) This build is especially sensitive to lag and ego. Sensitivity to lag is pretty obvious. But ego? the high ego of making all the monsters go where you want them to go, escaping everything, reviving every cross on the screen (while still killing things and protecting other players) will make you get extremely reckless and reckless gets you killed. I've done that a couple of times, only to die to a single grub thing crawling on the ground. I remember one player said it best, he said something like "After everything, you died from THAT?!?!?" My fingers don't get tired like I hear about the CMWW wizards, but my play of the game will be the sound of a 90 word a minute novelist under deadline. I can play it slow, but I like being right in the middle of the mobs.
3) Leveling. Whoa how is this weak to leveling? Because of the use of Force Armor and Illusionist. Both skills are dependent on you life which increases with every level and the mitigation of damage to your life which increases with every level. Your gear will have to change about every 10 paragon levels for Force Armor and Illusionist to adjust to your better stats. Yes this sucks big time. At the time I originally wrote this, my wizard hopped around like a grasshopper at around paragon level 20. I'm at 40 now and do more damage, but because my eHP went up I can no longer warp around like the Enterprise with too many dilithium cyrstals.

This build combines kiting and tanking effectively. Because of Teleport (Calamity), I also control the flow of combat. At the same time it is party friendly because the time bubble acts as protection for any player on the screen with you and depending on which bubble you use, other players will almost always do more damage. This is the closest you will get to playing like a Diablo 2 Sorceress inside of the Diablo 3 game. When playing in a party, I've found Teleport:Fracture is even better, since monsters regularly target the mirror image and monks and barbs like you for not blowing their fuel away.

When playing with others and you see someone using your bubble for protection (like DH and other Wizards), don't move the bubble until you clear a way for them to escape or move your bublele in stages so that they know you are moving away and that they need to move too.
Edited by Jelf72#1606 on 7/6/2013 10:11 AM PDT
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I took the plunge by mistake and did MP10 with 50k DPS and it wasn't any different playing at MP0. EXCEPT that it took a long time for monsters to die. If I could get my DPS above 100k, get some (Life Steal/LoH or increase my life regen), my Wind and Lightning Warp mage will do good at MP10.

After looking at the gear of CMWW wizards, I've found my gear is about the same. So I tried CMWW. You could say that this build is a moving version of CMWW. If you're a CMWW Wizard, it will take a while to get used to this build because it requires you to move and be fluid in combat.

Since I've played both builds with the same gear, I can say that this is a powerful build. Its not as efficient as CMWW, but it is more versatile and funner to play.

Edit:I want to say now, that I don't believe this build will outperform the CMWW build in the present Diablo 3 landscape.
Edited by Jelf72#1606 on 7/6/2013 10:13 AM PDT
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Since I've played both builds with the same gear, I can say that this is a powerful build. Its not as efficient as CMWW, but it is more versatile and funner to play and much less painful on the fingers. With more powerful equipment (eg. with much more gold), I can see this build either trumping or morphing into a form of CMWW.
While it's refreshing to see other builds, to be honest your build will not compete with SNS. At any given time right now, you're only dealing damage with Energy Twister+Diamond Shards. LL is unneccessary unless your run Arcane Dynamo, since there's no advantage to running in this build (both LL+Energy Twister take an action). The beauty of SNS is that you're always dealing damage with Wicked Wind+Chain Reaction+Diamond Shards+Shocking Aspect. The latter three skills never take an action so you should almost always run them if you want to deal the highest damage. The big hitters are Explosive Blast+Shocking Aspect.

Now you're actually partially correct that dropping Frost Nova will increase your DPS. I did some Ghom tests, and a SNS using Frost Nova (Bone Chill) deals about the same amount of DPS with or without Frost Nova added into the spam (with a slight increase in performance without Frost Nova). However, I think you have to run Explosive Blast and Storm Armor (Shocking Aspect) to even start getting close. Something like this: http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/wizard#VQgXhT!gYb!YcZccc . However, the main issue is that the beauty of SNS is stacking twisters. At full wind up, you have 10-12 twisters deal damage on your targets, which in turns reduces your cooldowns and provides more DPS via activating Explosive Blast+Diamond Shards+Shocking Aspect more often. If you can't stack twisters, which is harder without Frost Nova, you're going to see a dip in your effective DPS.

If you think your build is competitive, then I strongly suggest timing yourself how fast you kill Ghom. Then use this formula to find your DPS multiplier (ie how much more DPS you do than your sheet DPS suggests you're doing a second): DPS multiplier = Ghom's Life / (Kill Time for Ghom x your Sheet DPS). You need at least 6.6x to compete with SNS.
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Also, OP, with a wall of text like that, ya gotta post the url for the build in the skill calc like what Tekk did. Some of us are lazy!
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The problem OP has is that he runs 50K DPS. I'm not sure any amount of testing would make things realistic.

I would totally test out the skills set except I'm at work.
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The problem OP has is that he runs 50K DPS. I'm not sure any amount of testing would make things realistic.

I would totally test out the skills set except I'm at work.
That's the beauty of a Ghom Test! :)
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I think meteor would be a better replacement for WW, then you could use Arcane Dynamo instead of Evocation. The problem with WW is you seem to be wanting to use calamity for extra damage, but it will knock the mobs out of range of your WW. Also, it does the same damage per cast as WW so you don't really gain any dps from using it, just survivability.

Like Tekk said, WW+LL is redundant. Use one or the other since they both do the same thing, namely proc CM and LoH. WW is better at both and does much more damage but if you really want to use calamity I'd use LL. LL + Arcane Dynamo also works great together and AD can empower your calamity, I believe, so you won't waste the charges.

Either way there's really no way your build will morph into a superior version of SNS since you only have 1-2 damage spells going on. If you stand in one spot and spam WW, you do 2.52x your char sheet dps. SNS does 6-8x their sheet dps in damage because of shards+SA+EB+cold blooded with FN.

Finally, at high MP you can be one shot through Force Armor. It only absorbs an amount of damage equal to your max hp, so if you have 20k hp and something does 40k damage, you die.
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I have no doubt that the CMWW build is superior with the present landscape of Diablo 3. I did try the classic CMWW build. I tried to get my build to kill as fast as the CMWW with the same gear. I couldn't do it without turning into CMWW.

I guess what I should have said should have been more along the lines of ...

In the nerfing that we all know will come, this build is unnerfable even if they break the Critical Mass mechanic or reduce the proc'ing. The build, from what I have been able to do, is MP10 viable no matter what the Blizzard people do.

In the changes to come, if Blizzard makes it a point to nerf SNS, all they have to do is add more ranged units that are placed to be spaced out and have greater line of sight range, in areas that are known bread and butter farming areas. I don't think that would be hard to implement. And from what has happened in the past, both recently and in Diablo 2, I'm sure the Blizz is looking for a way to nerf SNS.

Its not even the nerfing of a specific class build, when Blizz starts adding elemental immunities or other things that change the way damage is dealt, or the way ... well, you get the idea.

Course, Blizz can nerf anything any of us players can think up. If they reduce the slow movement and slow missile speed to make Slow Time unusable, then it would be nerfed, too. But I can't ever see Slow Time ever being over powered to the point it would be nerfed.

Ummm, I talking about how SNS controls monsters. If that were taken away, SNS wouldn't be viable anymore.

What is the Glom Test? Do I time the solo kill of regular Inferno MP0 Glom? If so, how does that make a standard test, since sheet DPS will always be different. I don't see how that compares different builds. If there were a standard Sheet DPS for doing Glom, then the multiplier would have meaning. Is there a standard max IAS, CC, CD, Resist All, and Armor, and life? If I sound sarcastic, I'm not. I'm really asking.

I didn't know that Force Armor only mitigated up to my total life. Would you happen to know what life a character would need with Force Armor in MP10 with no Strength, Dexterity, Armor or resists? Or in other words what's the highest damage you know of in MP10? This information is a serious downer to my build. I was counting on Force Armor to mitigate everything MP10 dished out.

Will do.
Edited by Jelf72#1606 on 4/22/2013 9:47 PM PDT
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Molten and maniac explosions deal around 400-500k damage. Aside from those mobs I think demon tremors are the hardest hitting mobs and deal somewhere around 100-200k damage, at least that's my best guess.

To maximize FA usefulness you want it to absorb the whole 100% on an attack and take no more damage, that means 135% of your EHP should be exactly the value of the damage done. For molten or maniac explosions, that means you'd want around 300-370k EHP.

For tremor hits it's only around 74k to 150k EHP, which is extremely easy to obtain. Elites do a bit extra damage, like 25%, so you might need as much as 200k EHP to fully maximize FA against elite demon tremors, if you go into zones where they can spawn.

Sorry for the large range on the values but I don't have any more precise info on damage those mobs do. I used FA almost exclusively before MP was introduced but with the changes in mob damage and introduction of MP, I lost track of actual damage done and never saw any posts of specific amounts of damage done by mobs.
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Edited by Jelf72#1606 on 4/22/2013 9:52 PM PDT
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@Jelf72: So first off, a Ghom Test is simply killing Ghom and timing yourself. You can pick the MP level of your choosing. Generally people prefer the test take longer than 30-45s so you can ensure that your kill time more accurately reflects your steady state damage (no wind up from energy twister). The idea behind the test is to see how much real DPS you're really dealing out. And this is why people talk about DPS multipliers, since it tells people how much extra damage you're doing than is predicted by your gear alone. Thus, builds that have higher DPS multipliers are generally considered more effective. To estimate your DPS multiplier, you kill Ghom and note the kill time. Then take Ghom's life and divide it by the kill time. This is how much effective DPS you were actually doing. And to get the DPS multiplier, just divide your effective DPS by your paper DPS (ie 51k). This is a nice measure, because it gives us some predictive ability that if someone else tried your build they could then roughly predict how much effective DPS they'd deal.

Next, I agree SNS could be nerfed, but really it's a crap-shoot what they'll nerf. It could be Frost Nova, Wicked Wind, or Critical Mass, so IMO it's not really worth worrying about it.
Edited by TekkZero#1963 on 4/22/2013 9:59 PM PDT
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@TekkZero You answered me as I was asking. Thanks!
Edited by Jelf72#1606 on 4/22/2013 10:12 PM PDT
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Sure, you can kil Ghom with SNS build too! But it's been pretty well established that the DPS multiplier is 6-8x (typically varies because of a player's latency).
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