New to DH, have a few questions!

Demon Hunter
Hey guys I'm working on a DH and I don't have much experience with the class so I wanted to ask a few questions.
-do % skill damages from say SoJ and cloaks stack?
-This is the build I plan to use:!efX!bYYbca
It's a poison based build and I plan to use an SoJ and a Zunimassa's Trail. (I'm having trouble getting the nat's first set bonus due to the other equipment I plan to use, but that's for another time). Does bola strike acid strike pierce? If not, I might switch to thunderball for the stun or use entangling shot, I'll play around once I get to 60 but I still plan to be spike trap based.
-does anyone dual wield crossbows? is there a downside to it that I'm not seeing? I'll probably have to grab a manticore for the +poison damage.
Anyway, any help is appreciated! Also, sorry for the bombardment of questions, these are just some things sticking out in my plan.
I think you may misinterpet the way how elemental damage works in D3. As it is currently it is quite counterintuitive and I think I even did read a bluepost mentioning that the elemental damage is not working as initially intended. Anyway, here we go on a quick summary on elemental damage:

+% elemental damage does not increase the damage of the same element
+% elemental does also not increase damage of any other element

In fact, any elemental damage on your weapon does not get any benefit whatsoever from +% elemental damage on your gear.

What does profit from +% elemental damage then?
The only thing that profits is the so called "black damage", that is the portion of damage of your weapon that just says "+xxx min damage" or "+xxx max damage" without mentioning any element. Note that if it says "+xxx physical damage" this would also be considered elemental damage in this sense.
If you have a weapon that has a base damage of 100 - 200 damage and a stat that says "adds 300 - 400 poison damage" only the 100 - 200 portion (the "black damage" part of the weapon) will benefit of any +%elemental damage modifiers. If instead the weapon has 100 - 200 damage and stat that says "adds 300 min damage" and "adds 400 max damage" the total of then 400 - 600 damage will benefit from the +%elemental damage modifiers.

Note, that these +%elemental damage modifiers are calculated first when the total damage is computed and will benefit from any further damage modifers, making it a very effective damage pushing stat - for a black weapon.

So at the current state of the game there really are no elemental based builds. Only "black" or "raw" damage does profit from elemental modifiers and it does not make any difference if the modifier is poison or lighting or whatsoever. Also, in the mechanic I explained above, +%elemental will stack for different elements. You can get +%poison on Zunimassis and +%Holy on Inna belt and it stacks together just fine.
The only element that has an effect on its own worth is cold, because any %cold damage will add a slow effect to the enemies. All other elements just add damage and a different color.

To answer the question of stacking skill damage: yes, all modifers to skill damage do stack

Dual wielding xbows comes with a rather steep penalty to damage potential generally. A cheap DML quiver will easily out-DPS most offhand xbow alternatives. There is a viable gearing choice with dual wielding, but both xbows require decent dps, an open socket and >90% Critdamage on the xbow right away. Such xbows are generally really, really expensive.
For starting you are much better of with any decent bow/xbow + DML (Dead Mans Legacy)
^ sexy guy
Ah I totally misinterpreted how elemental damage works...I feel a bit derpy now. Thanks for the reply, I shall have to rethink things then :<.
Don't feel derpy about it. There is no way to figure it out by the information given by tooltips ingame. Your conclusion on how elemental damage should work is completely logical.

As for rethinking, I advise the following:
First, just level to 60; according your profile you are at 42, so just enjoy those last levels :-) Try to find out what playstyle you prefer during these levels. Is it more a slow, hard hitting weapon, or do you prefer fast attack speed. do you find yourself facetanking mobs with Shadowpower, or are you trying to evade as much incoming damage as possible?

When you hit 60 and are ready to enter Inferno, don't run to the AH and spend all your money on gear. I advise you take something like 500 - 700k and outfit yourself with gear that gives you dex/critchance/critdamage and get two kinds of weapons. A slow, hard hitting crossbow and a faster bow or hand xbow. Play with these through Inferno MP0 and see which kind of weapon you prefer (you should have maybe 30k or 40k damage for this to be easy).

Then come back with some ideas and we can help you on specific topics.
DW is a bit off atm. You currently loose a lot of HP, CC, attack-speed and skill bonus by DW. I mean you can make it work, but it will probably take a bit more gear to make up those lost stats and you might be restricted to lower MP's for a while.
06/25/2013 04:06 PMPosted by skydrgn7
-do % skill damages from say SoJ and cloaks stack?

It works % + %, not % on top of %. I use SOJ/Cloak with +% Spike Trap time to time and it hits very well. Tested and compared with no-bonus cloak and no-SOJ.

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