I build my wizard around archon gears. Archon is very viable in lower MPs and in higher MP, it is more of a challenge.
Nothing beats CM wizard in high MP.
However, I do not want to make a traditional CM wizard, and I don't want to play with SNS wizard either.
So it occurred to me, why not use my archon gears to build a 100% cold wizard?
The Frostburn Wizard
Here is the build: http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/wizard#ZgXYfl!hWg!YZcccZ
I call it "The Frostburn Wizard".
This build is effective in high MP and it is visually appealing as well.
It is a build that makes frostburn gloves shine. You might see a lower DPS on your DPS sheet but on field test, you will be amazed at how much damage a 30% frostburn gives you.
You do not have to use frostburn but give it a shot. It gives frostburn gloves a purpose.
This build you will want to get yourself surrounded by lots of monsters. Don't worry. A cold wizard do not fear the heat of a battle.
1. Lure a big crowd of monsters and once you have gotten a decent pack grouped up, go forward and meet this pack.
2. Cast Slow Time (right click) on the pack.
3. Hit 4 and drop blizzard on the monsters.
4. Move into close proximity with the monster and cast Ray of Frost on 1 of the monsters.
5. Spam the keys 1 + 2 + 3 while holding down your left mouse button.
P.S. Cast slow time + blizzard to always keep them up.
P.S.S. You do not have to follow this sequence cos ultimately, it is personal preference on how skills are to be used.
Crowd Control Abilities
This build have great crowd control abilities. There are multiple skills that freezes monsters namely:
Frost Nova + Bone Chill: Bone chill mainly for more damage. You can switch to another passive.
Ice Armor + Frozen Storm: Ice armor is great because when a melee hits you, there is a chance to be frozen.
The frozen storm rune allows you to build a whirling storm around you that does 30% damage. With cold blooded and bone chill, it ensures monsters are always chilled.
Blizzard + Frozen Solid: Frozen solid gives you a 20% chance to freeze the enemies for 3 seconds.
Life steal vs Life on Hit
This build in contrast, does not rely much on LOH. Instead it heavily relies on life steal.
Afterall, it was built with archon gears which largely benefit from lifesteal.
The reason why lifesteal works better is because "Ray of Frost -> Sleet Storm" proc better with lifesteal (in fact, lifesteal always proc). You will regain your life way faster than LOH.
Attack Per Second (APS)
If you have not noticed, 2 (Ice armor + Blizzard) of the 3 skills listed in this build allows you to freeze the enemies without you having to do anything.
Because of this, you do not need 2.72 APS like the traditional CM wizard for this build.
I am running with 1.60 APS and doing perfectly fine in MP 10.
Of course, more APS is always better and it is something that I will work on as I upgrade my wizard gears.
Arcane Power on Critical (APOC)
As this build uses archon gears, it generally do not have high APS. This makes APOC very critical in this build.
I recommend having at least 16 APOC on your gears.
Having more APOC is always better or you will run into situations (more frequently) that you need to kite on and off for arcane power to regen back.
Let us look at the gears used.
The following are the main items for the frostburn wizard:
Helm: Stormcrow - Mainly for it's APOC and overall great stats. Get 1 with critical chance so Critical Mass proc more frequently.
Offhand: Triumvirate - Get one with APOC.
Mainhand: Sword / Wand / Axe / Dagger - Preferably high attack speed weapon lifesteal weapon. Chantodo Will is not viable as having a lifesteal Chantodo sacrifice too much DPS. I use an axe with 3% lifesteal. I would prefer a sword or dagger with Attack Speed % + lifesteal. I am still hunting for an upgrade but for now, an axe is doing pretty well.
Ring: Stone of Jordan - With Ray of Frost skill. Get one with at least 6% CC for Ray of Frost as this is the main skill that does the monster slaying.
P.S. Ray of Frost - Sleet storm can hit at 1 million damage per tick with my gears.
Gloves: Frostburn (optional) - Frostburn gloves but this is optional. I ended up using a rare gloves as it gives me more EHP and attack speed.
Highest Viable MP
I ran my build with 1.60 APS and surprisingly, it handles MP 10 pretty well. I will die on and off due to those OP elites with "freeze orb", or arcane fields on my feet but generally, it performs very well even in MP 10.
If you play in a group, this build will help the whole team vastly due to it's crowd control abilities.
Yes. It is viable for uber.
I have used this build to run MP 10 uber with my friends and it is performing pretty well. The only uber that will be a problem is siege breaker due to his reflect.
I hope you will enjoy this build as much as I do.
It brings back the lovely memories of the Cold Sorc in Diablo 2.
Edit: Changed title to better reflect the main skill used in the build and fixed a paragraph issue.