Diablo® III

[Guide] Arcane Mines

11/19/2013 11:57 AMPosted by MILESIAN
One thing I lament about your latest build with Chilling Aura and Time Warp is that there is no longer an effective ranged AM option. Not suggesting it's any less powerful than your previous builds, just a bit less well-rounded; Frost Nova isn't going to be available often enough to control kiting elite packs.


You're absolutely right that it is a less rounded build. I was looking to maximize the mines+electrify explosion as much as possible based on the understanding of how the damage boost is calculated, and the cost is range and versatility. I'm going to dump Deep Freeze tonight and try out some different stuff in that slot. I'm also going to try Melkor's idea of using Pinpoint Barrier. That plus a Scoundrel will kind of sort of make up for Deep Freeze.

This is very reasonable, but I can't get over the fact that every attack turn spent on Spectral Blades = two fewer AM casts. Huge difference in performance, that. The only thing that might mitigate that is, as Melkor suggested, to slot in Arcane Dynamo. Even a short 2-3 second AD-boosted AM burst could make up for the DPS loss that comes with the signature spell territory.


I just see too many situations where the monsters are not graciously bunching themselves up for a mines channel to completely sell myself out to mine spam. If the AoE was larger then I might agree, but it's easy for a monster to miss the main DPS with mines, and then you're losing time to figuring out where exactly to place your mines. Fast monsters, monsters behind walls, arcane beams, etc. It's strange, but I seem to wipe out packs faster when I get a swipe of Electrify-enhanced SB in there right before the mines explode. Under a TW bubble and with CB applied, the effect and the damage to a group can be shocking, pun intended. The multiple hits of SB on multiple monsters sends out all kinds of Electrify procs. With a big stacking of attack speed, there could be a whole build built around SB+Electrify spam with those boosts applied.

That said, I feel AD is really purposed for a signature spell + one spell combo, perhaps along with a very intermittent third spell. This doesn't seem to jive with your professed playstyle, which is what made me wonder what AM builds you might come up with if you had slower APS and were sans Spectral Blades.


Or a Sig+Close+Ranged build like my LL/SS/Blizzard build. LL is kind of a cheat with AD, which is why they're making AD per cast in RoS. I will probably "downgrade" my attack speed with a sword one of these days, but in some quick experiments I found any weapon attack speed of 1.3 or less really tedious for laying out mines and for the subsequent damage application. I want those mines out there fast and proccing Electrify as much as possible. I have more than a few Skorns in my stash, and while the damage per explosion is great, the minelaying is downright constipated.
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Tonight's experiments, in no particular order, brought to you by the letters AD.

http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/wizard#WejifS!WTZ!abaYZa - Where I ended up. Sturdy enough once Crystallize is fully stacked. Cast a Frost Hydra ahead of you and let a group run into it. SB can give a quick 5 stack AD on large enough groups and actually give you something damaging to do when you find a Frenzied shrine.

http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/wizard#WejifS!WTZ!abaYYa - Interesting variant. If you proc a frost nova with Ice Reflect, then you gain relative safety against melee, while the non-frozen monsters fill in the gaps around you and run smack into your mines.

http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/wizard#WejPTS!eTZ!abacca - LOL FIRE VARIANT. Use Liquefy's 8 second duration to proc Conflag and gain procs and stuff. There's a good build in here somewhere, but as of yet I didn't find it. The other meteor runes are way too short duration, and if you're going to use Comet, you're better off with FH or Blizzard if you're trying to boost mines with CB. For even more LOL-tastic fun, use Mammoth Hydra.

http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/wizard#bejifS!WTZ!cbaYZa - Ah yes, Living Lightning. This is basically putting all your chips in the Mines basket, since there's not a lot of damage to be done with LL. And God help you if you find a Frenzied shrine. You can't channel mines anymore, but you can create a heck of a light show as you drop those AD-enhanced Frost Hydras.
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11/19/2013 12:48 PMPosted by BDF
Hey Loroese, take a breaking from fixing fukishima or whatever and start posting in the wiz forums again.


I'm still around on occasion. My posts are mostly being ignored and I don't really have anything to add to this discussion as of yet. I've been too lazy to update the guide too, which I really should do sometime.
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Hey Loroese, take a breaking from fixing fukishima or whatever and start posting in the wiz forums again.


I'm still around on occasion. My posts are mostly being ignored and I don't really have anything to add to this discussion as of yet. I've been too lazy to update the guide too, which I really should do sometime.


http://us.battle.net/d3/en/forum/topic/10636543577?page=3#57

Quick primer on the first things I saw from the reforger. Start speculating more about Ros!

Edit: Nvm...they deleted the thread =(
Edited by BDF#1838 on 11/20/2013 6:40 AM PST
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It might be interesting to speculate on AM builds in RoS. I've thought about it a bit and expect to at least drop Dynamo, since 5 casts seems a bit much to get the damage buff. On the other hand, if they keep LL mechanics the same, it's only actually 2.5 attack turns since you attack at twice the rate with LL, so it might still be somewhat useful.

Overall, I mostly prefer to save speculations for when release is closer, since things can change too much in the mean time. That usually means with a release date for the expansion, or a few iterations into patches for ptr.
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Just did a couple of nice runs with GunnersDream and his Zero Dog WD. Tried out my very latest build iteration: http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/wizard#WegiTS!WbZ!abZYca

(Haven't decided if I'm going to call this Offensive Mined'd or Mines Over Matter :) )

I gave up on AD, not because the damage wasn't sublime, but because it was frankly annoying trying to keep my stacks up all the time without LL, and LL isn't going to do you any damage for fast monsters that don't stand still for your mines. I also don't want to fall back on the crutch of CM, given that it's not currently in anybody's future plans.

I also figured that since various Ice Armor runes were not keeping me all that safe, I might as well go DPS. Enter Shocking Aspect. I also decided that momentary 20% damage boosts (with all the double calculation goodness for Electrify) are worth more to me than 12% always damage boosts (Sparkflint) if I can keep Slow Time up often enough. Enter Evocation.

Illusionist would be ideal, but 71k life simply does not proc that at all. I'll have to see about dumping some vitality if I can still make this sustainable, because I do get hit a fair amount. The only passive defense right now is Blur.
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My line of thinking is Sparkflint is better for AD builds, since you don't want to break the channel, while Time Warp is probably better if you don't use AD, since interrupting the channel isn't much of an issue.

I don't have nearly that much life, so Illusionist is pretty good when I run the build.

When it comes to fast mobs, I just try to drop the mines on myself, and it seems to work pretty well, so I don't remember having many issues with them aside from the initial windup. I also don't use LL for CM procs, I use it only for AD and APoC. I do include CM in my recent builds because there's little reason not to, and AM itself procs CM fairly well when there's a lot of mobs.

I'd be curious to see a comparison between SA and Pinpoint barrier in terms of which offers more damage and under what circumstances, but I don't really have time to do that tonight. I've always had to use Prismatic Armor because I don't have high enough EHP to comfortably survive against RD without PA and BM.

I'll have to pull out my AM set sometime this week and play around with it again.
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That's a very good call on Pinpoint Barrier. Brings my mitigation up over 90%, so there's some defense to go with my offense. With a Scoundrel on board I'm critting 64.5%.

The primary disadvantage is only 80 AP, but since I'm running only one AP spender, I don't find it much of a detriment.

I'll be curious to see your SA vs Pinpoint comparisons. My mines wiz benefits from all the high EHP hand-me-downs that my main outgrew.
Edited by ThreeStars#1571 on 11/20/2013 6:43 PM PST
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Arcane Mines vs. Adria in Reaper of Souls (Torment I difficulty).
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I'll be curious to see your SA vs Pinpoint comparisons. My mines wiz benefits from all the high EHP hand-me-downs that my main outgrew.


It took me a bit longer to find the time to do some calculations, but I have done a bit of a comparison and will share the results. I'll start with the results and then show the math at the end. I neglected max AP contribution as well as any need to stop channeling. I'm also assuming the only spell you cast is AM, so the builds with DS and/or EB will be more favored by pinpoint since it adds dps to those abilities while SA adds no dps to any other abilities you might choose.

Results:
Based on my current stats, SA is better than Pinpoint Barrier by less than 1% for 1 mob, but PP wins out for 2+. So I gain less than 1% effective dps using SA at the cost of 35% armor. That makes PP a winner for me.

My stats:
484 CD
54.5 CC
1.848 APS

Notes:
At lower CD SA becomes more beneficial so the break even point could push to 2+ mobs.

CC% had a very small impact on the results. Lower APS favors SA a bit, but for my stats, unless I dropped to around 1 APS the results held.

CB has no impact on results since it applies multiplicatively to both cases.

Dropping Dynamo favors SA a bit more. Without it SA is better for 2 mobs, while pinpoint pulls ahead with a 3rd.

Math:
D = unbuffed dps (including follower though, but no MW, GC, etc).
Ad = dynamo (i.e., 0.75)
Mw = Magic Weapon (i.e., 0.1 or 0.15)
Sf = Sparkflint (i.e., 0.12)
Gc = Glass Cannon (i.e., 0.15)
Cc = Crit Chance (%)
Cd = Crit Damage (%)
Aps = Attacks per second
N = number of mobs (i.e., 1, 2, 3, etc.)
Cb = Cold Blooded (i.e., 0.2), but has no impact on general results
P = effective proc chance of AM = 0.5*1.5 = 0.75

Pinpoint barrier calculation:
eDPS = D*[5.4*N*(1+Ad+Mw+Sf+Gc)*(1+(Cc+5)*Cd/100^2)/(1+Cc*Cd/100^2)]*(1+Cb)

SA calculation
eDPS = D*[5.4*N*(1+Ad+Mw+Sf+Gc)+(1+0.35*N*P)/Aps*(1+Mw+Sf+Gc)]*(1+Cb)

Link to a simple spreadsheet I wrote that contains the calculations:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B4-opYZrg_XRbmZfU2h4RGZ1S0k/edit?usp=sharing

You can enter your unbuffed dps, APS, CC, CD values and whatever buffs you use to see how PP and SA eDPS compares vs the number of mobs. There's also a fraction calculation to show how much SA dps is compared to PP for easy comparison and to make it easy to find where one outweighs the other.
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Amazing, Loroese, specially because I always liked the "hidden" damage of SA. I'm doing my calcs with your formula as soon as I understand it. :)

Do you know (of course you do, that's a rethorical question) if the same formula would apply for other builds, as sleet storm / archon ? Or the formula works purely standalone ?

I'm asking because I have an idea that the effectiveness of PP would be smaller if you have high mitigation, like in Archon form.
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In theory you should be able to just change this part:

P = effective proc chance of AM = 0.5*1.5 = 0.75

... to whatever it is for the ability you want to use. However, SA (and CM) behaves strangely with certain channeled spells and procs about twice as often as it should. I think it's only Disintegrate and Ray of Frost (as far as channeled spells go) where it behaves this way in regards to SA, though.
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12/02/2013 06:19 PMPosted by Machado
Amazing, Loroese, specially because I always liked the "hidden" damage of SA. I'm doing my calcs with your formula as soon as I understand it. :)

Do you know (of course you do, that's a rethorical question) if the same formula would apply for other builds, as sleet storm / archon ? Or the formula works purely standalone ?

I'm asking because I have an idea that the effectiveness of PP would be smaller if you have high mitigation, like in Archon form.


Change P to the effective proc rate and replace 5.4 with the weapon damage of a skill. For SS that means P = 3/16 and replace 5.4 with 3.64

The effectiveness of PP on your dps is not impacted by Archon at all. The armor bonus is slightly diminished due to Archon form, but it's still a significant armor bonus. For example, in my Archon setup, if I drop PP for SA, I take about 16% more damage. In my AM gear, if I drop PP I take more like 19% more damage, since the 35% armor is a larger contribution to my overall damage mitigation.

It also turns out the char sheet dps isn't needed, since it's the same sheet dps for both skills unbuffed, but like CB I'll leave it there to give the complete formula for effective dps with that skill. Again, keep in mind that only applies for the channeled skill and doesn't include EB or DS casts, which potentially raises eDPS, especially against extra mobs. As I said above, those skills gain dps from PP but not from SA, though the lower AP pool might come into play at some point. In other words the calculations aren't all inclusive, but should be informative to make a good choice.

In general, it means I would recommend PP over SA to just about everyone. The dps loss at high gear levels is very minimal and mainly against singles, whereas the mitigation gain from PP is quite nice.

12/02/2013 06:51 PMPosted by Malakai
However, SA (and CM) behaves strangely with certain channeled spells and procs about twice as often as it should

That's true and I mostly neglected that, which means SA should be slightly better than I mention above. I should probably throw in some kind of correction factor like 2 or 2.5 to take that into account. Even with the correction factor the differences in dps between the two for my setup is still very small (on the order of maybe 3% for 1 target, and about the same for 2 targets). That seems like an awfully small about of dps gain for what amounts to taking around 15-20% more damage when using SA.

In other words, the minor dps gain from SA in the build is almost assuredly outweighed by how much easier it is to make up the dps on gear with lower mitigation to obtain the same EHP. I.e., using pinpoint barrier is more cost effective.

One other note is that just compares SA to PP. If you're able to use something like reactive armor, that's another story and would require some more assumptions to approximate.
Edited by Loroese#1415 on 12/2/2013 7:12 PM PST
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Another thing to consider is Prismatic Armor once you get to a certain gear level. Mostly because all that extra mitigation might allow one to safely pick up Glass Cannon for a huge dps boost while still maintaining enough mit to get by. What you gain from Prismatic is more than what you lose from GC, and the 15% extra dps should be more than the 5% CC you get from Pinpoint.

If you need that 3rd passive slot to get your build to function, this obviously isn't an option. But I think most AM builds have the space to work with. Plus there's really nothing else you can put in that 3rd passive to boost dps unless you have some kind of fire damage and are using Conflagration.

I really think what it comes down to is Blur + Pinpoint versus Glass Cannon + Prismatic. For me, GC + Prismatic is about 20k more sheet dps, about 130 more AR, and only about 400 less armor than going with Blur + Pinpoint.
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Why not Glass Cannon and Storm Armor?
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12/03/2013 11:02 AMPosted by Melkor
Why not Glass Cannon and Storm Armor?


Far less opportunities for Shocking Aspect to proc than in SNS. It makes gearing for higher dps while relying on prismatic to be a stronger (if not better) alternative in the case of Arcane Mine build.
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What about Power of the Storm? Wouldn't picking up the reduction in AT cost allow a higher aps?

EDIT: Nevermind. Mines would just disappear during channeling
Edited by Melkor#1521 on 12/3/2013 11:13 AM PST
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I really think what it comes down to is Blur + Pinpoint versus Glass Cannon + Prismatic. For me, GC + Prismatic is about 20k more sheet dps, about 130 more AR, and only about 400 less armor than going with Blur + Pinpoint


If you're not running Dynamo, then sure, blur+pp vs GC+pris is pretty easy to compare just looking at char sheet dps. For me, I run dynamo, so it's not really an option since I run CM and CB. Otherwise it should be better for dps than pinpoint, and likely better survivability too (I gain about 0.6% mitigation, 89.74% vs 90.31% with prismatic and GC). GC also means higher mitigation to break even against RD, which might cause gearing issues, but does seem like the plan for higher gearing than I have (only around 300k unbuffed dps including follower with my 10 APoC setup).

12/03/2013 11:02 AMPosted by Melkor
Why not Glass Cannon and Storm Armor?

I meant to metion above but forgot, but based on the spreadsheet I wrote, self buffs have very little impact on the SA vs PP comparisons. That includes GC, MW, and Sparkflint, but doesn't include Electrify.

No one mentioned it, but I imagine Electrify would benefit more from pinpoint than SA since PP should have a higher AM multiplier, and electrify is based off damage done. Plus, if I understand the mechanics of electrify correctly, SA will not proc it. If my math is right Electrify should add about 7.5% effective dps to an AM spamming build.
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12/03/2013 11:02 AMPosted by Melkor
Why not Glass Cannon and Storm Armor?


Personally I think GC + Storm Armor (either Shocking Aspect or Reactive) is pretty much endgame for almost every build. The problem is that most people don't have the gear or the funds to get the gear needed to support both at the same time. Getting really high dps and really high mit at the same time is a luxury not many can afford. Either they can afford really high dps, but their mit is lacking so they need Pinpoint or Prismatic to get by, or they have really good mit but poor dps.

In the case of good mit + poor dps, GC + SA can help them to "average out", but they'll probably still be way behind someone who gears for high dps while also factoring in Prismatic + GC into their gearing strategy (like BDF mentions).

GC + Pinpoint (like a lot of Archons do) is obviously an option, but I think that if you gear around Prismatic + GC you can end up with a more solid character all around, at least for Sleet Storm and Arcane Mines builds, and certainly when you're working within a budget.
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12/03/2013 11:46 AMPosted by Loroese
If you're not running Dynamo, then sure, blur+pp vs GC+pris is pretty easy to compare just looking at char sheet dps. For me, I run dynamo, so it's not really an option since I run CM and CB. Otherwise it should be better for dps than pinpoint, and likely better survivability too (I gain about 0.6% mitigation, 89.74% vs 90.31% with prismatic and GC). GC also means higher mitigation to break even against RD, which might cause gearing issues, but does seem like the plan for higher gearing than I have (only around 300k unbuffed dps including follower with my 10 APoC setup).


Ah, good point about AD. I forgot about that one.

AD + Prismatic might still yield better overall results considering what you can possibly gain in dps by not having to gear for as much mit. Or even the possibility of being able to gear with enough mit while using Prismatic to not need BM anymore for RD and instead go with Force Weapon. I haven't really delved too deeply into that area, though, because I'd need a helm and gloves like what Melkor has for his AM setup to pull it off I think.
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