Diablo® III

[Guide] Archon Rebirth (T6+GR)

2.1 PTR

Archon has a minimum cooldown of exactly 1 second after it has naturally expired. This means Archon as a skill can't be reactivated until after 1 second so even together with 80% CDR and Pure Power rune with 100 secs cd and having Archon naturally expire after 20 secs, there will still be a 1 sec waiting period before it can be reactivated. This 1 second can be taken advantage of through limiting your effective % CDR by an amount equal to 1%.

Path I

This build path was originally designed for up to T6 Rifts with a gearing setup that attempts to remove all or most deaths and thus premature losses of Empowered shrines. However, it's also compatible with solo Greater Rifts to an extent. Recommended for solo play, but can in theory sometimes work for group play every 6th game (6 shrines total) by taking the guaranteed shrine buff of GoH 1st WP Well of Blessings.

This path focuses on gaining just enough % CDR for Empowered shrine to get you to maximum % CDR. It has a tedious Empowered shrine prebuffing requirement, but is mobile, fun and efficient (after the fact) for up to T6 rifts and Greater Rifts, which do not last longer than 10 minutes or so. If a GR lasts longer than 10 minutes, you're required to locate 2 world Emp shrines outside of GoH 1st. One would be used when starting the GR and another after 10 minutes after TP in mid run. I don't think it's worth the effort. The shrine gloves simply don't last long enough for Greater Rifts for this build to function properly at the higher GR levels.

The maximum effective % CDR for this path is about ~58% CDR prior to Empowered shrine, which would increase it to ~79% CDR. This means that Pure Power Archon with Vyr's 4 bonus would bring your naturally expired Archon cooldown to the ~1 second minimum.

I recommend to lower the amount of % CDR slightly to about 1.63 seconds cooldown to grant time to position for Combustion with TP and to use BH.

Gear for Path I.

This path is best with Arcane element due to MLW. The proc also scales with element now.

0% CDR Ring of Royal Grandeur: Reduces the number of items needed for set bonuses by 1 (to a min of 2). Act I Horadric Cache.
0% CDR Gloves of Worship: Shrine effects last for 10 minutes. Act II Horadric Cache.
0% CDR Vyr's Boots+Pants+Chest: 500 int. Archon gains the effect of every rune.
0% + 12.5% CDR Aughild's Helm and Bracers: 7% reduction from ranged/melee attacks and 15% reduction from elites. 15% increased damage to elites.
10% +8% + 10% CDR Born's Sword and Shoulders: Reduces CD of all skills by 10%. Increases Bonus Experience by 20%.
0% CDR Harrington Waistguard: Opening a chest grants 100-135% increased damage for 10 sec. Note. Doesn't proc in Greater Rifts. For GR use String of Ears: Reduces damage from melee attacks by 25-30% or The Witching Hour for more dps.
0% CDR Moonlight Ward: Hitting an enemy within 15 yards has a chance to ward you with Arcane Orbit (up to 4), dealing 240-320% weapon damage as Arcane to enemies within 15 yards.
8% CDR Cosmic Strand: Teleport gains the effect of the Wormhole rune. Allows the use of Safe Passage for a bit more survival.
0% CDR Unity: All damage taken is split between wearers of this item. This grants you massive amounts of mitigation if a Follower is using for example Enchanting Favor: Your follower cannot die.

20% CDR Evocation
10% CDR Paragon

0% CDR The Furnace: When using Enchantress. Chance to deal 8% of current health as fire damage.
0% CDR Homing Pads helps a lot with GoH Empowered Shrine buffing.
0% CDR Nemesis Bracers Shrines/Pylons/Well of Blessings will spawn an enemy champion.
0% CDR Stone of Jordan: Arcane skills deal 15–20% more damage. Increases damage against elites by 25–30%. This can sometimes be used on T6 over Unity when possible but it can be a risk to survival and EMP shrine.
0% CDR Immunity Amulets. Can be useful for some RG.

Build:

http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/wizard#mNSjQO!hSbi!ccZaac

same with Illusionist over UA for even more efficiency at the cost of survival (EMP)

http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/wizard#mNSjQO!dSbi!ccZaac

Paragon tips for both paths: Max CDR/MS/LPS/LOH.

This setup leaves 1.63 seconds of Archon cooldown afterwards to be used with TP and BH. CDR proc gem: Gogok of Swiftness can be used but is better for Path II.

In adventure mode it takes ~3.5 mins over time to buff Empowered Shrine in GoH 1st by TP from the top to the Well. Attempt to clear full act bounties or a rift in such a way that it lasts ~10 minutes to make full use of the shrine. Excess shrine duration can be used for clearing past Rift Guardian and/or for Hell Rift or crafting mat bounties. Save extra Emp shrines for later use. In a rift go back to Emp shrine, portal out, finish rift, enter again and take Emp shrine before the rift closes to max the shrine duration for next rift. If a rift takes longer than ~10 mins you can revert to Path II or do lower Torment.

Scroll back for info on GR and Empowered shrine.

Video:

Path I T6 1 Hour Empowered Express Rift: http://youtu.be/AOCmtihsRFk

Path II

This build works for both solo and group T6 rifts and is also compatible with solo and group Greater Rifts.

The focus is on gaining all % CDR without Empowered shrine, but it doesn't exclude the use of Gloves of Worship for it either. GoW can turn Path II into Path I whenever an EMP shrine is found. Every game join should coincide with a GoH 1st shrine check.

Fire element is recommended due to a few reasons. This path has difficulties with AP management, therefore MM Conflagrate together with Mirrorball is the choice for decent dps. MB extra missiles also grants procs in 2.1, including Gogok of Swiftness (20% CDR).

It can be spammed and combined with the leg gem Gogok of Swiftness prior to activating Archon. It gives 20% IAS fully stacked. On Rank 50 it unlocks 20% CDR for Archon when fully stacked and then continuously up to 20% CDR to Arcane Blast and Teleport during Archon.

Build:

http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/wizard#aNSjmO!dibS!ccZaac

Gear for Path II.

0% CDR Ring of Royal Grandeur
8% CDR Vyr's Gloves+Chest+Pants
12.5% CDR Aughild's Helm and Bracers
10% +8% + 10% CDR Born's Sword and Shoulders
10% CDR Crimson's Belt+Boots: Gain 10% CDR.
0% CDR Eye of Etlich Any amulet with fire damage.
8% CDR Mirrorball Magic Missile fires 1–2 extra missiles.
8% CDR Unity if necessary and Enchanting Favor or similar.

20% CDR Evocation
10% CDR Paragon

0% CDR Vyr's Boots + Gloves of Worship: Shrine effects last for 10 minutes. Act II Horadric Cache. When you find Emp shrine revert back to Path I.
0% CDR The Furnace: When using Enchantress.
0% CDR Homing Pads
0% CDR Nemesis Bracers Shrines/Pylons/Well of Blessings will spawn an enemy champion.
8% CDR Stone of Jordan: Fire skills deal 15–20% more damage. Increases damage against elites by 25–30%. This can be used in place of Unity when possible.
0% CDR Immunity Amulets. Can be useful for some RG.

So a ring and an amulet was left out of the % CDR equation. This setup together with Gogok buffed comes to about ~73.65% CDR. Resulting in ~6.35 sec of Archon CD. This cooldown and ~1.5 APS go together well with Gogok proc with single target MM Conflagrate. Faster to buff multiple targets but not guaranteed.

Remember the option for swapping gear/build for Path I if you find an Empowered shrine.

The lvl70 CDR list. All % CDR is multiplicative.

20 sec Pure Power
20% Evocation
12.5% Flawless Royal Diamond
10% Paragon
10% 1H Weapon
8% each (source, rings, amulet, gloves, shoulders)
10% Captain Crimson's Trimmings 2 bonus
8% Vigilante Belt (can't use together with Vyr's + Crimson's)
10% Born's Command 3 bonus
50% Empowered Shrine 120 sec. Gloves of Worship extend shrine effects to 10 minutes.
75% Rift Channeling Pylon 30 sec.
Healing wells reduce all CD by 45-60 sec. (Trag'Oul Coils)
Leg Gem: Gogok of Swiftness 100% (at Rank 50 % CDR unlock) chance on hit to increase your Attack Speed by 2% for 3 seconds, stacking up to 10 times. Rank 50 also grants up to 20% CDR when fully stacked. Socketed to ring/amulet.

Conclusion: An Archon build isn't capable of the highest GR results, but it's not bad either. In general it seems as though Archon has become a bit redundant with 2.1 PTR by a build similar to this, giving both amazing survival and dps and there's no need for shrines: http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/wizard#VNigkO!dZhe!ZbcbZc

Skip replies to July 2014 onwards for newer more up-to-date builds. This guide has been theorizing an Archon build since the first RoS datamine.
Edited by dominatus#2534 on 7/10/2014 8:08 AM PDT
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isn't this the hybrid build that some people use especially if they are fond of arcane destruction?

so when can improved archon be viable?
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I'm not really that aware if the build has been mentioned before. I'm here basicly to say that there could still be a chance for Archon to exist post RoS.

You can use Improved Archon for example if you're really into Archon and want to solo Ubers with it.

You could do a short demonic essence farm run in warrior's rest with it also though.

I wouldn't use any other rune than Teleport currently for pretty much anything else, because it allows you to be where you want to be. It has tremendous survival utility to for example escape from frozen or place yourself in the best line of fire where you'll hit as many monsters as possible simultaneously. Helps with movement speed a bit also.

RoS should be all about reducing the CD also.

I would appreciate if they increased the Archon duration to 20 seconds though, 15 sounds a tad too low.

edited typos
Edited by dominatus#2534 on 9/14/2013 6:55 AM PDT
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I really, really dislike what they are proposing (remember that these changes aren't final) to do to Archon.

They've given us a huge mob density boost which is great for grinding, but emphasizes the importance of being able to facetank and quickly melt through tons of mobs. The whole kiting playstyle is all about dragging difficult fights out by repeated hit 'n run tactics, which doesn't mesh well with the inherent grinding aspects off the game, nor does it work well with party play.

They're taking one of our best facetank/grinding abilities and reworking it to be a burst damage effect that is almost completely useless unless there is a large quantity of trash around to buff it up. Chances are, by the time you realized you are in a difficult battle and need the buff, all the trash will have been wiped out, leaving you with 15 seconds of bleh.

And they aren't even done yet. They said they wanted to nerf 3 builds... Archon, WW/Barb, and CM/WW wiz. They've completely neutered 2 of those builds, but haven't really done much with CM/WW... yet. I'd be amazed if refreshing Archon via CM/WW is going to remain viable, if the changes already posed are any indicator. I hope that they playtest the changes they are planning for "fun-ness" as well as for "dev-vision compliance".
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To me it seems like they're trying to encourage farming styles where you gather a large amount of mobs before engaging. Get 80 monsters to follow you, pop archon and benefit from +240% damage. This is similar to what WD do now with BBV.
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This build you're proposing is practically the same build that Archon players run against bosses and ubers. Basically it's a hybrid build designed around lasting no more than 15 seconds. Nowadays it's just Arcane Destruction to make use of the burst damage.

In fact, this build saw a ton of use in multiplayer Archon games prior to 1.08 when there was no party on-kill features. Archon users had to run WW for near instant refresh. If CM remains as is, the build will see the same use in RoS.

See: http://us.battle.net/d3/en/forum/topic/9377379295
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Archon Wizard Video Guide Series:
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Twitter: @Jaetch
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@zylog: It can certainly look that way.

@ATGOWTWT: Devs idea was to get Archon back to it's original intent, to not be a 100% uptime status ability. They could make sure that it doesn't take too much of a hit though. If there are going to be further CM/WW upcoming changes that make it more difficult to reset Archon cooldown then that could really be a game breaker. There are other issues with Archon also. It has room for more skills on the bar. I've actually thought that the Slowtime rune of Archon removes from survival rather than adds it vs Teleport rune so Teleport should be an actual skill on the bar, with Teleport rune replaced for something else.

Despite the currently higher cooldown of 85 seconds compared to RoS it would be interesting if someone (who hasn't sold wiz gear) with high CC/APS and decent dps would test the 1.08 build out and canceled Archon at 15 seconds manually then taking clock of how long it takes to reset the remaining cooldown. And maybe try to estimate how much of the cooldown was reduced while in Archon form also. The mobs need enough health not do go down instantly though so there is time for procs. Also try casting some additional WW at the end so maybe the next Archon cooldown is cut down significantly by that already.

edit: Actually I could test it out myself with cheap gear high APS+CC but low dps, if nothing dies there's no need to cancel the Archon. It won't be real conditions on the mob availability-wise but I can afford it and less tedious trying to manually cancel Archon.
Edited by dominatus#2534 on 9/14/2013 9:16 AM PDT
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@Jaetch: Okay, I stopped playing at May so I'm not that up to date with everything. I can see how nowadays grouping mobs with Arcane Destruction could be useful, though. But Teleport seemed like the choice for me at the time.

I added Arcane Destruction to the build as it definitely seems a possible option for RoS as well.
Edited by dominatus#2534 on 9/14/2013 8:41 AM PDT
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While we are talking about Archons, Is there any other build you can run decently with Archon gear (ie: no APoC) or do I need to invest in a few different pieces to try something else?
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@Jinrah: Well you can try Spectral Blade, probably the lifesteal rune and Blizzard. Spectral Blade also imbues it's attacks with cold damage for example from a SoJ. I've tried different things with it. Illusionist passive and Slow Time to boost damage.

Anyway. I've just concluded my testing with what I believe to be the original APS/CC level of the gear I had on my Archon from a screenshot. It was most likely 2.50APS/65CC@515K. I just did testing on MP10 keep depths with not too many mobs simultaneously @2.50APS/65CC and 10 APoC Storm Crow.

Archon: Teleport 102 seconds cooldown with Evocation. It's endless teleporting and arcane blasting while beaming. Archon cooldown always went down a minimum 60 seconds to full cooldown reset, meaning it went beyond 102 seconds! All during the 15 seconds time I timed with a clock and then canceled so kills didn't interfere with it.

When I added a WW before enabling Archon it was 100% reset way before the time was up.

Conclusion: Archon is still perma archon with these CM mechanics. Add a possible future CM nerf + Marquise Diamond + Paragon bonus. It's probably still totally perma archon.

And the test was done with just a handful of mobs. Arcane Destruction - Teleport are all game on. Pure Power doesn't seem to be needed at all in general farming.

I could definitely come back to Archon considering all the current gear will be made redundant.

There is NO nerf to Archon. There is only increased DPS. This is a buff guys. Gear yourself right.
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@dominatus: Sadly, I think you're being WAY TOO optimistic. Wake up and smell the bitter coffee. :( If you think that instant cooldowns will work through Wicked Wind, you're likely in for a rude awakening. I'd be planning for a massive nerf to Wicked Wind to the point it's largely unusable, and you'll be working with other skills like Living Lightning (if those aren't nerfed too). There's no way we'll see instant cooldowns in 1.0.8/RoS. I still hold out the hope that some skills will proc CM decently, but it's going to be a LOT less effective. CM is still probably going to be a bit better than what Gruesome Feast is for WDs, but I would expect a fair amount of down-time for Archon users.
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Dominatus, why do you think the proc coefficient for Wicked Wind will be untouched?

The designers haven't finalized those changes by a long shot, so what makes you think we will be able to spam Wicked Wind to refresh Archon? It works now, of course, and some of us have an APOC Triumvirate or Stormcrow for ubers. The "now" is what the designers are changing.
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WW isn't even the most important factor here. Now it looks like it's enough if it's going to help. As long as CM isn't touched in regards to Archon abilities I will be able to perma spam it. So CM is what I'm more worried about now that I've tested 2.5APS/65CC.

It will be enough if WW helps a bit. Even a 50% nerf to WW will probably be enough for me.

Before we know more about the final changes, I'm very optimistic as I've already tested, although a limited amount that CM with Archon 15sec abilities alone is enough to reset 1.08 cooldown, RoS cooldown will be about half of what I've currently tested or less. It will be enough to reset Archon cooldown without WW, without tons of mobs help. It's all about CM now.

It's exciting to me that Archon could be based around the players skill to maintain it, instead of what it is now. Sometimes you succeed, sometimes you might not. What we've come to see is the new trend of mass mobs, it will be several times more mobs hit at once than what I've tested on.
Edited by dominatus#2534 on 9/14/2013 1:21 PM PDT
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WW isn't even the most important factor here. Now it looks like it's enough if it's going to help. As long as CM isn't touched in regards to Archon abilities I will be able to perma spam it. So CM is what I'm more worried about now that I've tested 2.5APS/65CC.

It will be enough if WW helps a bit.

Before we know more about the final changes, I'm very optimistic as I've already tested, although a limited amount that CM with Archon 15sec abilities alone is enough to reset 1.08 cooldown, RoS cooldown will be less than half of what I've currently tested. It will be enough to reset Archon cooldown without WW, without tons of mobs help. It's all about CM now.

It's exciting to me that Archon could be based around the players skill to maintain it, instead of what it is now. Sometimes you succeed, sometimes you might not. What we've come to see is the new trend of mass mobs, it will be several times more mobs hit at once than what I've tested on.
The key is that you should be trying other skills, and specifically not Wicked Wind. If you're happy with the cooldown reduction on other skills, then you've got more of a leg to stand-on to be happy I think. The safest bet is to assume that Wicked Wind will be 100% non-functional, and you should avoid it for playtesting purposes. I'd try various runes of Shock Pulse (Living Lightning or Fire Bolts) or Spectral Blades to get a decent sense of how effective you'll be able to reset the cooldown with CM (assuming CM is left alone). My experience is that LL with Archon is decent, but you'll definitely start feeling the sting with fewer targets.

My guess is Archon players will be rounding up mobs around elites, and then use the new archon damage bonus to take Elites out quickily.
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09/14/2013 01:23 PMPosted by TekkZero
My guess is Archon players will be rounding up mobs around elites, and then use the new archon damage bonus to take Elites out quickily.


This was kind of how it was when no one had perma-archon; archon was something you'd pop for elites or dense spots (a mini-game to see how long you could keep it going). The designers have stated so many times that perma-archon wasn't "intended" -- it's supposed to be fun mode for a short burst and that's it.

Archon can still remain on the skill bar. But perma-archon purple beast of awesomeness, as we have known it, played it, breathed it, loved it, is gone unless there is some magic archon duration gear in the works (ain't happening).
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Even a 50% nerf to WW will probably be enough for me.
This is where you're having way too rosy a view. Expect Wicked Wind being more like 1/10 of what it is now (ie a 10x nerf). Travis Day is on record as having mentioned that CM procs 10x more than was intended for CM builds. And it's no big mystery why we're able to do that: Wicked Wind.

See the issue is this: Wicked Wind is widely way more effective by any objective measure to our other skills. Effectively we get about 4.15-5 average procs per cast with Wicked Wind. That's HUGE! Most of other good skills are between 0.5-1 average procs per cast. So a ~10x nerf would simply bring Wicked Wind down to the level of say Molten Impact or Arcane Mines. That's how ridiculously strong Wicked Wind is right now!!!! :lol
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If WW was 100% useless, I really doubt that such a nerf would be made though. It may also be enough to be able to cast it twice before activating Archon as long as Archon handles the bulk of the cooldown. So even APoC may not be an issue. I could also use LL as a backup secondary instead of FN, it must be a skill that functions without my input while I'm in Archon form.

Keep in mind that the values I'm talking here aren't exactly your standard 1.4APS or CC. These are high end values that change everything, and not everyone will be walking around with them at decent dps levels.

Even if Archon couldn't be up all the time you could use that time to gather around mobs, though.
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I think we really need to see what they intend to do with CM. If I had to guess, I'd say they're just going to remove the passive completely. Otherwise I would have expected to see some changes to it in the datamined info, even if it's just some wordage change, like most other skills and passives. The counter to that argument is you might expect them to mention if there's no CM passive to be found.
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09/14/2013 01:31 PMPosted by jenpeezey
My guess is Archon players will be rounding up mobs around elites, and then use the new archon damage bonus to take Elites out quickily.


This was kind of how it was when no one had perma-archon; archon was something you'd pop for elites or dense spots (a mini-game to see how long you could keep it going). The designers have stated so many times that perma-archon wasn't "intended" -- it's supposed to be fun mode for a short burst and that's it.

Archon can still remain on the skill bar. But perma-archon purple beast of awesomeness, as we have known it, played it, breathed it, loved it, is gone unless there is some magic archon duration gear in the works (ain't happening).
Yeah sadly... :( I'm also expecting SNS to be dramatically diminished too. That all said, I'm not really negative at all about the future prospects of wizard, as I think builds like Sleet Storm and Meteor will probably be pretty darn viable! :) We're just gonna have to try to rely on things that aren't based around Archon or SNS.
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@Loroese: I don't think it included every passive for every class. Could be wrong though. But I thought it was only the ones with either a wording or function change only. But CM is indeed what I'm most worried about.
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