XP farming: a blizzard build

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Disclaimer: This is a low MP build I explained on Reddit a week ago.

This build is for those of you interested in pure paragon XP farming. Low MP is better for this purpose. Basically, going 1 MP level higher gives about +6% XP total, but you'll end up running a lot slower than 6% usually. A good criteria is one-shotting white mobs with a multi-target skill.

Two builds currently dominate the wizard landscape, Archon and WW/CM. Both have drawbacks for optimal XP farming. WW/CM has windup time, which makes it inefficient at low MP levels, the place to be to optimally farm xp. Archon is chosen by most wizards seriously farming xp, yet standstill beam, no access to teleport/wormhole, difficult efficient scramble armor usage don't really convince me as a true endgame solution.

So, looking for an ultimate farming skill with the following properties:
- not a channeled spell. We want to run while killing mobs.
- does not prevent access to other skills, such as teleport/wormhole
- (large) area of effect spell. RoF won't cut it, obviously :)
- fire-and-forget. Micro managing position, distance and randomness is out of question
- damage ! one-shotting trash is mandatory
- spammable. Sorry hydra. and no cooldown spell.

The last candidate makes the cut: it's blizzard (I have to credit DestroyOne for his use of hydra/blizz for xp farming).

I have found that the Stark Winter (improved area) rune is a must, fewer casts and better fire-and-forget gameplay. It is quite AP intensive, and cannot really be alleviated by APoC as blizzard proc coefficient is abysmal (1% per tick with Stark Winter).

This is what I decided first: http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/wizard#WlTSjQ!YWX!YYYcYZ

v2 (current) to fix AP problems: http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/wizard#WlTSjQ!aWX!YYYZaZ Yeah, Power Hungry. It needs a bit of pickup radius though. Most efficient solution I've found yet.

Here is a video (sry about the audio) of a 5:45mn xp run with alkaizer's route, around 8M xp in this run. It's above 80M xp/h on average.


The vid has room for improvement. I'm still not used to the build, underusing teleport and not relying on blizzard full duration to kill packs.

Gameplay: never stop running, teleport on cooldown, single-cast-of-death entire areas with your blizzard. Storm armor takes care of isolated critters.
Healing blades get some use on elites, when you need health or when mobs block your path (barbs noclip ww is op). Reflect damage is very manageable with them.

You graze mobs as they don't instantly get killed by blizzards, so you get hit and Storm armor/scramble speed buff is almost always on. That makes it quite a risky build though.
Another drawback : most drops will be offscreen, but you should hear legendary drop sounds, if you don't play with music on.

Gearing: It's rather high-end. Mobs need to die in a single cast of Blizzard. I found it comfortable around 200K dps buffed. Good mitigation is also required (no Archon AR/armor bonus) as you will get hit a lot.

Blizzard damage does not use attack speed, so I guess 2h weapons are a possibility, though I'm reluctant to lose the dynamic of a good casting speed.
EDIT for clarity: during gameplay, you will chaincast spectral blades a lot, and teleport/wormhole. They directly benefit from IAS.

24%movespeed, helm ruby and hellfire are a given. I don't bother with Leoric signet or Cain set, though Leoric is really interesting if you can.
The Oculus source, with -4s to Teleport cooldown and +3s to blizzard duration or bonus to Spectral Blades seems a good choice.
About Frostburn gauntlets, they're very good for the build (+cold making your blades cold-based, +coldskill, pickupradius), with a single drawback: they don't boost Storm armor's lightning, which is very important to finish off single mobs.
4 pieces Tal for passive AP regeneration could be a great addition. I prefer the Power Hungry way though.

Feedback is appreciated !
80m + xp per hour? i could only get as much as 30 mil per run :(
uhm if legendaries would appear in mini map this build would be great, but i dont play with any sound so i dont know.
i guess i ll turn on the sound and give it a try.

btw do you hear the legendary drop even if you are far away?
uhm if legendaries would appear in mini map this build would be great, but i dont play with any sound so i dont know.
i guess i ll turn on the sound and give it a try.

btw do you hear the legendary drop even if you are far away?

no, there's a certain distance you must keep to hear it or to even have it ping or something.
most likely u will miss most legs here
did a few runs with this build, here are my findings.

this is strictly xp run, because loot will be minimal, without monster power active, the quantity and quality of your drops will suffer. and u cant really see half of your drops... because this is very close to WW barb style of run.

very high gear check requirements . 24ms and LS are a must. you need high dps 200k to kill stuff with blizard, and you need high defense because you'll be running recklessly in order to save time. this reminds me of how we take archon defense boost for granted. i didnt really have the defense to take hits, so i switch power hungry to blur. and as a result my efficiency probly takes a dip.

found the xp per hr ratio to be slightly better than my standard archon run. which is about 60m /hr for me. btw, 6m runs for 8mil will not translate into 80mil per hr, because you're not factoring in overheads, just try it... OP might get more success by using my act3 run, guess he didnt read my zone density analysis...

for now , i'll stick with archon for the better drops.
@eLINminator I've read your thread, but can't stand Arreat1, really.
I don't run Alkaizer run usually, this run is more for comparison purposes. I run Core->Damned1->Curse1->Arreat2->DK2->Rakkis south-> Fields->Stonefort.

I got above 78M xp/h for my last few paragon lvls, including identifying a stash of rares every few runs.

That sold me for efficiency, as I was making about 55-60M xp/h with Archon-tp-scramble.
I'm also improving playing the build. I've reached above 200 massacres bonus several times yesterday, thanks to Power Hungry AP flow.
OP i saw your reddit post a week ago and I was sold instantly :D. I've been using the exact build as your v2 since then (power hungry + pickup radius).

Another thing I would recommend is getting life after kill instead of life steal as it's more effective. Also, I found that maximum arcane power from gear is crucial.

I theorycrafted a bit more and I think this would be the highest end version, but the gear would need to be perfect:

The route I'm using is tower of damned 1 > rakis from wp into fields > arreat 2 > keep 2 > skycrown
I see :) It's really an end-game target build.

You'd need enough DPS to side Coldblooded, enough Max AP to side Astral Presence (I'd say at least 20, being able to throw 3 blizzards back to back seems crucial to me), enough mitigation to not need healing at all when fighting elites (let alone Reflect damage ones). Waller is also painful with living lightning.

Given that, you gain very fast TP cooldown reduction. I'd try Evocation only as an intermediary target. Added to Oculus TP cooldown reduction, it might be enough for most situations.
Have tried this build a couple of times and for XP levelling, it is awesome.

On my first try (i.e. im not pro at using the build yet), I got 12.5mil in a 10min run. That equates approx to 75m/hr.

Also, I tried this on MP0 then MP1 and got about the same XP. Because I dont get archon bonuses, I am more glassy at 270k EHP and probably die about once per run. So I try to go with MP1 for the item bonuses.

I also bought some cheap Tal rasha set (helm, chest, ammy, belt), got an oculus -4 teleport, -3 blizz. Passive used was GC, cold blooded, Astral presence.

For AP regen, I tried switching our arcanot for sparkflint for more DPS (about 200k buffed dps) and did not notice AP difference. Generally I feel a little AP starved, and can drop 3 blizzards max then have to use spectral blades for awhile before blizz again.

Route-wise, I did the normal Alkaiser run. I also tried extending the run to Rakkis and Skycrown (based on Eliminator's study) but surprisingly it was less XP efficient (about 60m/hr).

Was wondering if a meteor shower version of this is possible? Have not tried power hungry so might help my AP issue.
Anyone tried meteor shower with this instead of blizzard?
I just use the usual CM build and replace explosive blast with blizzard-
fasest way is throwing blades with scramble and venom hydra
11/19/2012 11:05 PMPosted by s8a8i14
fasest way is throwing blades with scramble and venom hydra

Well, this was DestroyOne's take on the rush build, it did not work for me: venom hydra not being spammable and throwing blades requiring proximity, targeting and not always one-shotting mobs.
Has anyone tested what the absolute minimum DPS is required for 1 blizzard to kill mobs in MP1?

I am trying to make this build work for MP1 so at least the treasure drops are better.
Krali - also saw ur profile and noticed you dont use tals set. How do you find AP regen without the set? Sufficient with power hungry and astral presence?
Basically, Power Hungry and pickup radius. With enough DPS, many mobs end up dying around you (not offscreen) and you get a good AP flow.

Max AP is also important, targeted for my next upgrades.
11/21/2012 02:57 AMPosted by krali
Basically, Power Hungry and pickup radius. With enough DPS, many mobs end up dying around you (not offscreen) and you get a good AP flow.

This is what I do; useful to have big HP and AP buffers so that the globes fill them up.
Is Leoric ring important for this? I feel like it does make a difference in XP returns.
XP bonus are additive, so you experience diminishing returns. Suppose you already have double hellfire/max ruby/5NV : +148% if I'm not mistaken. Perf Leoric would add another 30% which is in fact a 12% increase.
Quite good, as long as you're not slowed down from losing your other ring. I think I won't give up my zuni in this slot.

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