[Review/Video] - Reaper of Souls Monk Changes

Hey guys!

Some proposed changes to monk skills in Reaper of Souls have been posted on Diablofans here:

All/many/some of these changes might be completely re-worked before the Expansion goes live, but I think it's worthwhile to start thinking about what they mean for our class right away.

I will discuss each change and end with a review of what direction I think the game looks to be taking.

For my review I will be using number based on our level 60 characters and the available items in Diablo III right now. Things will be different in RoS ... but at least we can get an idea of how it would work now.

I will also update this review as new information comes out so feel free to check back from time to time! :D

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•••••••••••••••••••••••••• Video-Review of RoS Monk Changes ••••••••••••••••••••••••••
•••••••••••••••••••••••••••••• http://youtu.be/3sewAYSq3D4 •••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••

As always, thanks for reading and please, let me know what you think about these changes / my ideas / anything at all really! I love the discussions so bring it on! :D

———————————————[ Table of Contents ]——————————————
Note: You can use the links provided to quickly naviagte through this Guide!
  • I - Newly Added Skills (and passives)
  • Mythic Rythm
  • Momentum
  • Epiphany

  • II - Spirit Generators
  • Fist of Thunder
  • Deadly Reach
  • Crippling Wave
  • Way of the Hundred Fists

  • III - Major Changes to Skills
  • Dashing Strike
  • Inner Sanctuary

  • IV - Minor Changes to Skills (some of these are AWESOME)
  • Transcendence
  • Near Death Experience
  • Mantra of Healing
  • Mantra of Conviction
  • Wave of Light
  • Lashing Tail Kick
  • Tempest Rush

  • ________________________________________________
    "Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing at all" ~ HK
    Druin, the happy monk
    ————————————————[ New Skills ]————————————————

    Mythic Rythm
    Using a Spirit Generator grants increased Spirit generation from Spirit Generators by 2, stacking up to 3 times. / Using a damaging Spirit Spender consumes all stacks and has its damage increased by 8% for each stack consumed.

    This is one of the two new Monk passives and it is an interesting one.

    In case the wording is a bit confusing, here is how this will work (most likely) --
    Each time you hit with a spirit generator, you will get a stacking buff that increases your spirit gen's spirit per hit by 2. This can stack up to three times (increasing your spirit gen's spirit per hit by 6).
    When you use a spirit spender that does damage, the stacks get consumed and the spender does increased damage based on the # of stacks you have. (8% for each)

    Example --
    You attack with FoT.
    Hit 1 you gain 8 spirit (its new base spirit gain).
    You have 1 stack.
    Hit 2 you gain 10 spirit.
    You have 2 stacks.
    Hit 3 you gain 12 spirit.
    You have 3 stacks.
    Hit 4 you gain 14 spirit.
    You have 3 stacks.
    Hit 5 you gain 14 spirit.
    You have 3 stacks.
    You cast Wave of Light - Empowered Wave.
    It consumes your 3 stacks and does 925% weapon damage * [1+ 0.08*3 (stacks)] = 925 *1.24 = 1147% weapon damage.
    You have 0 stacks.

    This is pretty neat but may not end up being very good.

    It takes a lot of IAS to make this effective because you don't really want to be spending time hitting things if you can help it with a slow 2h build.

    However, IAS doesn't help your spirit -> damage conversion so spirit spenders won't be nearly as powerful in an IAS build.

    This will also trigger off EP (I assume) which makes it terrible for the TR-EP-Bells type builds.

    What it WILL be useful for is the Cookie-Bells build which usually hits 3x with FoT - Q then casts a bell then repeats.

    It will function similarly to a maxed out Combo Strike PLUS you will generate additional spirit ... win/win.

    I like this passive but I don't think it's terribly game breaking ... Cookie-Bells monks should be flipping their desks in excitement though ...
    FoT - Q with a teleport + non-knockback WoL + this passive = HUGE BUFFS.

    Moving 30 yards increases your damage by 20% for 4 seconds.

    Unlike Mythic Rythm, this passive looks pretty insane.

    20% damage for 4 seconds is a LOT of buff from one passive and moving 30 yards is pretty damn easy.

    This means when you cast DS, you get 20% for 4 seconds, while TRing you get 20% for 4 seconds.
    If you have a combo and it takes less than 4 seconds to do, you are generally just getting 20% increased damage.

    I will probably equip this passive and never look back.

    The cool thing is, this passive is good for the specs that MR is bad for and vice-versa. This is pretty good game design.

    Momentum is obviously the best for pure-TR monks who never stop moving and thus it is a flat 20% damage buff.
    However, DS monks will have it almost all the time as will TR-hybrid monks.

    Cookie-Bells monks will have a hard time moving 20 yards while comboing off and SW - Cyclone monks will have an even harder time due to lack of movement-augmenting skills.

    It should be noted that the impact this passive will have on my VotA clear-speed is hard to even imagine! ;)

    I think this is an EXTREMELY well designed passive from the perspective that it makes you think about a game-dynamic that is basically completely ignored now.
    When was the last time you really considered how much you are moving around? Sure you DS because it feels good, but you don't do it for a purpose other than dodging things or getting to a place.

    Now, you will have to get comfortable with how far 30 yards is and how often you move that far.

    I can only pray that they add an icon for the buff because this will be even harder to keep track of than DR - Foresight!

    Cooldown: 120 seconds / You have an Epiphany, restoring all of your Spirit, reducing the Spirit cost of your skills by 50% and enabling your melee attacks to instantly dash to your target for 20 seconds.

    Skills that have 120 second cooldowns are usually quite bad.

    The only exceptions to this rule are skills that increase the duration / decrease the cooldown as part of their mechanic (Archon and WotB - Thrive on Chaos) and Blizz has said they don't like that kind of mechanic so we can't really expect the runes to help us out there.

    That being said, it's a strong effect with melee effects all dashing and skills costing near-zero spirit.

    It remains to be seen if this is useful or not but I will put a lot of my guessing power into the "not" category until the runes are released.
    ——————————————[ Spirit Generators ]———————————————

    Fists of Thunder --
    Fists of Thunder Generate: 8 Spirit per attack / Teleport to your target and unleash a series of extremely fast punches that deal 145% weapon damage as Lightning. / Every third hit deals 275% weapon damage as Lightning split between all enemies in front of you and releases chain lightning, dealing 73% weapon damage as Lightning to up to 3 additional enemies.

    Oh my goodness!

    I have been campaigning for the teleport of Thunderclap to be moved to the base rune of FoT for almost a year now and here it is!

    The teleport was part of what made Thunderclap the only available DPS rune for Spirit Gens.

    The second change they made was to change the third hit from true AoE to split-damage + chain lighting.

    This change really reduces FoT's effectivness in the AoE department. When hitting 3 monsters, it will be at max damage capability hitting for 164.7% weapon damage on each of them for a total of 494% damage per strike (compared to today's 330%)

    However, when hitting 6 monsters, the new FoT will still do only 494% weapon damage on the third hit compared to the old FoT's 660%.

    I love this change because it means you have to make a choice.

    Another very large change is increasing the spirit per hit from 6 to 8.
    This sets FoT solidly in the lead with a spir/sec of 12.16.

    I assume this change is due to the fact that other gens will be getting buffs to make them more attractive and the new aoe-centric environment creates less appeal for single-target damage skills.

    At this point I can't imagine not using FoT:Q as my go-to resource generator ...

    They also increased the base damage to 145% weapon damage.
    This pretty much cements FoT as the ONLY viable single-target Spirit Gen.

    I believe they are doing this because it is now so much worse against large groups and I see it as being totally fine ... though the elite kill-speed will be unparalleled.

    Lastly, they removed the knockback. This will be a positive for some people and a negative for others. I am STRONGLY in the camp of people who believe knockbacks are the devil because they do nothing but decrease my overall DPS. I will be happy to see the knockback die in a fire. :D

    Now, let's look at the runes --
    Thunderclap : Release an electric shockwave with every punch that hits all enemies within 6 yards of your primary enemy for 35% weapon damage as Lightning and causes knockback with every third hit.

    Okay, so you still get the 35% true-AoE damage back and you get the third-hit knockback back as well.

    This will still most likely double-proc SW:Cyclone and still be a very valuable rune. It remains to be seen if the rune can continue to keep up in DPS with other generators.

    Given that the proc C remains the same, this will almost certainly remain the Generator of choice for "cookie-cutter" monks as it will be doing INSANE single-target damage and will have the highest proc C out there for SW:C.

    I hope the Proc C is blown-up so that we have more choices ... but that is just me! ;)

    Bounding Light : Every third hit also releases chain lightning, dealing 73% weapon damage as Lightning to up to 3 additional enemies.
    Static Charge : Your primary enemy is charged with static electricity for 5 seconds and takes 37% weapon damage as Lightning when you attack other enemies with Fists of Thunder.
    Quickening : Critical Hits generate an additional 15 Spirit for each enemy hit.
    Lightning Flash : Increase your chance to Dodge by 16% for 2 seconds after each hit.

    The rest of the runes remain unchanged for now.

    Thoughts --
    I will still use FoT:Q to generate spirit and now I will get a free blink + 8 spir/hit instead of 6 AND increased damage.

    The Chain Lighting on the third hit means it has a chance to hit 3 more times than the current FoT in AoE situations which means 3 more hits that can crit and proc 15 spirit from Quickening.

    All in all, this looks to be a GIGANTIC buff to FoT:quickening.

    If the third hit or the chain lighting from the third hit is able to AoE proc Static-Charge, it will most likely be better than Thunderclap for DPS in any situation that has 2 targets.
    I would really like to see the chain-lighting apply Static Charge because it would let you hit your primary target and keep static on the other one constantly.

    This would be much better than Thunderclap for things like Ubers or elite packs.

    True single-target would still HEAVILY favor Thunderclap.

    Deadly Reach
    Deadly Reach Generate: 7 Spirit per attack / Project lines of pure force over a short distance for 110% weapon damage. as Physical. / Every third hit has a 30% chance to knock up enemies.

    you now gain 7 spirit instead of 6 and every third hit has a chance to do a completely useless thing.

    DR will now generate 9.38 spir/sec which is a lot better than its current 8.04 but WAY worse than FoT.

    I do not see this impacting playstyles at all.

    The runes are also completely un-interesting with the only substantive change being:
    Scattered Blows : Every third randomly damages enemies within 25 yards for 170% weapon damage as Lightning.

    This skill already increased the damage of DR by quite a bit because the attack animation of the third hit is greatly reduced.
    If this change removes the "6 monster limit" that the third hit of Scattered currently has AND increased the range to 25 yards, it might actually be a worthwhile AoE skill.

    I am not super excited about it ... but I am at least mildly interested.

    Crippling Wave
    Crippling Wave Generate: 7 Spirit per attack / Unleash a series of large sweeping attacks that deal 125% weapon damage as Physical to all enemies in front of you. / Every third hit also dazes enemies around you within 11 yards, slowing their movement speed by 60% and attack speed by 20% for 3 seconds.

    The changes here are pretty basic.

    No increase in spir/sec (sad), a clarification about the size of the third hit's AoE (apparently it's 11 yards) and a slight buff to damage + snare.

    There is nothing mind blowing about these changes but they will help keep CW competitive with the new FoT.

    If you are a Rising Tide user, your life just got strictly better because 15% more damage (110 -> 125) is pretty nice. The snare is actually impactful now at 60% rather than a meager 30% but it is still pretty useless in a game where monsters tend to run AT you ... at least goblins will be easier to nail down! :D

    Due to the lack of rune-changes, I am guessing that this is simply not yet completed and we will see additional rune changes in the future.

    Way of the Hundred Fists
    Way of the Hundred Fists Generate: 7 Spirit per attack / Unleash a rapid series of punches that strike enemies for 140% weapon damage as Physical.

    Well .. this is technically a nerf.

    They are decreasing the spirit per hit from 8 to 7.
    This makes absolutely no sense in a vacuum because WotHF was already worse than FoT AND used less than FoT.

    To explain this change, I am going to make a completely wild guess --
    I believe they are going to drastically increase the base attack speed of Way of the Hundred Fists and they reduced the spir/hit to compensate for this.

    This is why the increase in damage on FoT will be manageable because WotHF already does 140% AND it will hit faster making it significantly better AoE damage than FoT.

    I have no proof for this, but it's what I would do as a game designer and it's one of the only stats we are not privy to with datamined information like this because it wouldn't be a text change. (there is no text anywhere in the game that explains the spirit gen base attack speed mechanic).

    If this is the case, and they are indeed increasing the overall animation speed for WotHF, it is a HUGE buff.

    WotHF is currently not a viable attack for damage purposes because it doesn't proc enough Cyclones and has significantly lower single-target DPS than FoT:TC.

    With higher attack speed, it could be a lot closer to competitive.

    Nirvana monks would stand to gain by far the most from this though. WotHF - Fists of Fury is currently used to proc the interaction called "Nirvana" and the WotHF part is simply a burden. The faster it happens, the happier the Nirvana monk will be.

    The same is true for duo/tri-gen monks who use Blazing Fists for the IAS boost.

    All in all, I see this as a major buff to WotHF assuming they increase the base attack speed and a VERY minor nerf if they do not.

    As for the runes, Hands of Lighting has its tooltip updated to reflect the fact that when the second hit attacks 10 times, it now does 200% weapon damage total instead of 140% over 7 hits.
    This is not a buff, it's how the game functions right now!

    Lastly, Windforce Flurry no longer REPLACES the third hit with a line nuke, you get the line-nuke as WELL as the third hit.
    This almost certainly makes Windforce the highest DPS spirit gen if you ignore its terrible interaction with SW - Cyclone.

    Will this be viable in the future ... I am not sure, we will need to keep an eye on it though!
    ———————————————[ Major Changes ]———————————————

    Dashing Strike
    Dashing Strike Cost: 50 Spirit / Quickly dash up to 50 yards, striking enemies along the way for 535% weapon damage as Physical.

    This is easily the most fundamental and impactful change that the datamined info shows.

    This completely changes the way DS works.

    Instead of dashing to a target, hitting it and rotting it, DS will now work like this --
    You click on a targeted location up to 50 yards away (very far), your monk will then dash to that position.
    Any enemies that you pass through while dashing will take 535% weapon damage.

    This is both good and bad. You can now AoE with DS for 535% damage. You can now dash when there are no targets. These are awesome changes. However, it also costs a TON of spirit.

    I am honestly not sure how I feel about this change. DS will never be the same because 30 spirit (quicksilver rune) is simply too much to ask people to pay if you want to spam it so there will be no more DS - Q as a replacement for Serenity.

    However, monks who want to, will now be able to have a semi-functional D2-Teleport.

    This is both a nerf and a buff and I think we will need to wait for its implementation to really break down whether it was an overall gain or less ... so let's take a look at the runes because some of them are really interesting.

    Barrage : The last enemy you dash through is obliterated with a barrage of strikes, taking an additional 1337% weapon damage as Physical over 2 seconds.

    This rune replaces the useless snare on Soaring Skull with a VERY useful 1337% weapon damage DoT.
    It is hard to tell how useful this will be, but 1337% WD is more than a full cast of WoL - Wall of Light which means it's a LOT of damage.

    This might be used to get the utility out of DS AND make up for a build that can't really single-target damage otherwise. You could use this to kill elites quite quickly by DS -> FoT - Q twice -> DS ... something like that.

    Furthermore, this skill is an insta-win in PvP. Dot's can't be dodged in PvP and this is a big enough DoT to 1 shot most classes ... it is also attached to a quick-dash making it even harder to avoid ... nice! :D

    I like this rune but I am skeptical about its use with such a high spirit cost skill.

    Way of the Falling Star : Gain 25% increased movement speed for 3 seconds when using Dashing Strike.

    So, you no longer need to hit an enemy to gain the movespeed. I do not think this could really be viable when compared to Quicksilver as both are "increase the amount of space you can move" skills and DS - Q is almost certainly more efficient ... but if you want to MS really badly, at least you can get it 100% now.

    Quicksilver : Reduce the cost of Dashing Strike to 30 Spirit.

    Quicksilver now reduces the cost to 30 spirit which is closer to being in-line with other skills (LTK for example) and makes it much closer to spammable ... especially with the right items/skills.

    Because DS now does 535% damage and is an "aoe" it may actually be possible to "go infinite" with DS and use it as both your move and damage skill ... we will see.

    Note: Flying Side Kick now has a 100% chance to stun. I do not think this is a viable rune so I do not think this change helps much.

    Inner Sanctuary
    Inner Sanctuary Cooldown: 20 seconds / Create a runic circle of protection on the ground for 5 seconds that reduces all damage taken by 35% for all allies inside.

    I was one of the first and lone proponents for IS for a long time before Inferno was nerfed to the point of no longer needed defensive skills.

    I am sincerely glad to see that they took a look at it.

    I won't lie, I think these changes are amazing. IS may actually be a skill that you simply can't afford to leave off your skill bar now...

    The base skill no longer keeps enemies out (and presumably no longer fears them ... I hope) and, instead, reduces the damage you and allies take while inside by 35%.

    This is a pretty "meh" effect and I would never take the skill for this. If you need more sustain, there are a million better ways to get it than a 20s CD 5s duration redux ability.

    So why do I think it's so great? The runes ... obviously.

    Intervene : Dash to the target location, granting a shield that absorbs up to 2477 damage for 3 seconds to allies within 11 yards and then creating Inner Sanctuary. / Absorb amount is increased by 100% of your Health Globe Healing Bonus.

    This rune is interesting though probably not good.

    I like that it costs 0 spirit to dash to a location. Traditionally, "free" move-to-location effects have been good.

    However, the shield + IS effects are both pretty "meh".

    This skill has a LOT of flavor and being increased by globes is a good thing. This might be a feasible replacement for Serenity for monks who need an "oh no" skill AND it provides movement-augmentation when not being used defensively which means it's never bad.

    Having dual-purpose skills is usually a VERY good thing.

    You can also reduce its CD to ~10 seconds with the proper use of -CDR which means a free dash every 10 seconds that also slams a big shield + a redux zone. That is pretty good.

    All in all, I will play around with this and we will see how it works.

    Temple of Protection : Projectiles cannot pass through Inner Sanctuary and ally resource generation and regeneration is increased by 35%.

    So we get a tiny "projectile block" clause that is mostly unimportant but is not nothing.
    In PvP this could be the cutest skill in the world blocking all kinds of things that it shouldn't and in PvE it's simply a slightly better 35% redux because it 100% reduces specific attacks (some of which are the hardest hitting in the game ... fat-man fireballs and succy stars for instance).

    However, the important part of this skill is the regen increase clause.
    There are very few ways to increase your rate of regeneration from all sources and this is one of them.
    With GP (35%) + Templar (12%) + Temple of Protection (35%) + Paragon Level bonus (30%?) you could theoretically break the 2x spirit regen marker which makes some things pretty insane.

    Getting to 50 spir/sec passive is probably possible in this situation as is MoC - Reclamation refunding 100% of your spirit every time you cast a WoL or LTK.

    I love this effect and I also love that it works for allies.

    You will NEED CDR to make this kind of effect work so we will have to see how possible it is to get all the required stats together but I am keeping a CLOSE eye on this one.

    Forbidden Palace : Enemies inside Inner Sanctuary take 30% increased damage and have their movement speed reduced by 60%.

    And now we get to the real meat of this skill.

    Enemies take 30% ... did I read that right? 30%!!!! more damage.

    This is amazing. 30% is close to the effect of Faith in the Light for 2h users and flat out better than a non-activated MoC - Overawe.

    It applies to team mate's damage (making it a 100% must in groups) and it stacks with Faith and Overawe making it significantly better than Blazing Wrath.

    PLUS, as if the rune needed more, it snares mobs by 60% making it useful as a kiting tool (when needed) AND a "you can't get away from me even though my EF feared you" skill.

    This rune has it all and will be making waves when it hits for all monks looking to go the extra mile with their damage.

    The only thing holding this back from being a auto-slam into every spec is that it has a 25% uptime without CDR and a relatively low radius (based on the size of the in-game IS radius).

    Still ... this is amazing.

    The takeaway here is that Inner Sanctuary now has use as an escape/survive tool, a defense/regen tool AND a DPS/kite/group tool.

    It is unlikely that many monks will be running without IS after this change goes live.
    ———————————————[ Minor Changes ]———————————————

    Transcendence --
    Transcendence Every point of Spirit spent heals you for 165.1 Life. / Heal amount is increased by 1% of your Health Globe Healing Bonus.

    This is the first case of a skill being affected by +to globes and it is a GREAT one!

    I will be using 40k globes as my "baseline" because that is a pretty reasonable amount to get on gear right now without sacrificing major stat-lines.

    With 40k globes, this heals for 561.1 life per spirit spent.
    A skill that costs 50 spirit will heal for 28,255 life.

    This isn't too bad. I do not know if it would be possible to sustain entirely off this passive but I assume it's not totally impossible. Either way, this is at least a viable source of HP now.

    Near Death Experience --
    Near Death Experience When receiving fatal damage, you are instead restored to 35% of maximum Life and 35% Spirit. / This effect has a 60 seconds.second cooldown. / When Near Death Experience is on cooldown, your Health Globe Healing Bonus, Life per Second and Life per Hit are increased by 35%.

    Giving NDE some alternate text is very good because it is a "almost never useful" skill.

    However, this change does not address the real problem. NDE is currently only used in HC and when it is on CD you are in town waiting. It is virtually never procced.

    To make this skill more viable, I would really want to see the bonuses apply the whole time.

    That being said, the bonuses are VERY good. If you want to make a LPS/globes/loh build (IE:not LS) then you will want this passive to be active .. it's the Guardian Path of healing-stat builds when active.

    I will be keeping a tentative eye on this one.

    Mantra of Healing
    Mantra of Healing Cost: 50 Spirit / Recite a Mantra that causes you and your allies within 60 yards to gain increased Life regeneration by 1651 Life per Second. The heal amount is increased by 100% of your Life per Second. Lasts 3 minutes. / For 3 seconds after activation Mantra of Healing shrouds you and your allies with a mystical shield that absorbs up to 2477 damage. / Absorb amount is increased by 15% of your Health Globe Healing Bonus. / Only one Mantra may be active at a time.

    It has long been known that the healing portion of MoH is pretty useless outside of Sustenance in Hardcore.

    They are clearly looking to change that.

    The radius of the mantra is being increased by 50% which is very nice for people who use it to proc Guiding Light and the heal is now effective enough that keeping your allies in the radius might be important.

    Furthermore, they have increased the amount of the heal substantially (620 to 1651 is an almost 200% increase) AND added in a bonus for your Life per Second.
    This is so awesome!!!

    Life per Second was one of those "meh" stats that came on items you liked sometimes but was never really a priority (unless your name is Mojo, in which case it's best stat 2013).
    However, with this change, it may be very possible to heal your character entirely with LPS.

    Let's assume you have 3000 LPS (a lot but doable).
    With MoH on, you would now have 1651 + 3000 + 3000 = 7,651 LPS.
    For a "normal" monk with 50,000 HP, you are looking at a full-heal every 6.5 seconds.

    Now, toss in Boon of Inspiration --
    Boon of Inspiration : Mantra of Healing also heals 495 Life when hitting an enemy. Heal amount is increased by 100% of your Life per Hit.

    And you are looking at a LOT of healing without the need for LS.

    These changes seem very good. Not only will the aura give your LS to your party for increased Hardcore sustain, but a LPS / LoH build might actually be a viable alternative to LS.

    Lastly, they increased the shield that protects you when you cast MoH to 2477 from 930 AND let it scale by 15% of your Globes bonus!!!

    Not that I want this anymore, but the days of MoH spam to live could very well be back! ;)

    My overall take here is that MoH scales with three different stats (LPS, LOH and Globes) which makes it very pliable with different builds. I think this mantra will see increased usefulness as it is now the best possible way in the game to make your monk not die.

    Mantra of Conviction
    Mantra of Conviction Cost: 50 Spirit / Recite a Mantra that causes all enemies within 30 yards of you to take 12% additional damage. The Mantra lasts 3 minutes. / For 3 seconds after activation, the effect is increased to 24% additional damage. / Only one Mantra may be active at a time.

    Increased radius on MoC? I THINK SO!!!

    Pure-TR gets a buff here as MoC - Submission will now hit even MORE things for even longer.

    Other than that, the sauce is all in the runes --
    Dishearten now snares by 60% which has major PvP implications but will remain pretty useless in PvE.

    Intimidation decreases enemy damage by 15% instead of 10% which is probably useless but may be somewhat viable to someone. Definitely not a bad change.

    Now, we get to talk about my favorite change in the entire set of information!!!!!\
    Reclamation --
    Reclamation : When an enemy affected by Mantra of Conviction is killed, your allies nearby gain 1% of maximum Life and 1% of maximum resources.


    This rune used to be absolutely TERRIBLE and now it is easily the most interesting rune our of all the mantras.

    So, you get back spirit by killing things .. who cares?
    I DO!

    Monks, until now, have only had two ways to generate spirit ... you could hit things with a spirit gen or you could stack spirit/second on items/skills.

    Now, there is a third mechanic. Stack max spirit, stack +%spirit gain and KILL THINGS.

    First let's compare it to MoH - Circular Breathing which gives a static 3 spirit/second.

    In FoM, I clear it in ~5 minutes and kill ~600 monsters.
    This comes out to ~2 monsters per second killed.
    With a max spirit of 250, this is 5 spir/sec on average from Reclamation vs 3 spir/sec from CB.

    However, Reclamation has waaaay more upside than that.
    First, it only regens spirit after you have spent spirit to kill the mobs. This makes its spirit generation possibly more impactful than CB.
    Second, you get to use MoC!! It is no secret that MoC is the best aura. You always want more damage but it hurts to give up the utility from other runes ... no longer is this a problem.

    For example, many pure-TR monks use MoH - CB because the 3 spir/sec helps them TR forever ... well, you only need to kill 1.2 monsters / second for MoC - Rec to be just as good. This means a pure TR monk can now have the perma increased 12% damage AND gain more spir/sec than before ... so cool!

    This also opens up the possibility of "going infinite" by stacking enough max spirit (can get it as a paragon level passive) hopefully to ~300 then stacking +% spirit gain (can get it as a paragon level passive) and, ideally, you would gain ~5 spirit per kill which means a WoL - Empowered Wave only need to kill 8 monsters to be completely free!

    Of course, it gets even more broken when you group up and give this effect to teammates such as WD's who can suddenly spam all their skills or DH's who have a way to generate disc/hatred FROM their disc/hatred spam skills....

    I could talk for quite some time about this rune and how excited I am about it so I will end it here.

    Wave of Light
    Wave of Light Cost: 75 Spirit / Focus a wave of light that crushes enemies for 829% weapon damage as Holy, followed by an additional 96% weapon damage as Holy to all enemies in a line.

    Nothing about this is new except ...
    Wall of Light : Increase damage of the initial strike to 1202% weapon damage as Holy and adds a knockback.

    The added phrase "and adds a knockback" pretty much ensures that the other runes of WoL no longer have knockbacks!

    This is a pretty big deal and the knockback was one of the only things stopping WoL from being the single best damage dealing skill in the game of D3. Looks like Monks will no longer have to worry about it!

    I am not terribly excited about this change, as it's more of a quality of life thing than a game-changer, but it's a pretty significant buff so we should keep it in mind.

    Lashing Tail Kick
    Lashing Tail Kick Cost: 30 Spirit / Unleash a deadly roundhouse kick that deals 470% weapon damage as Physical.

    Finally, they have listened to our prayers and have removed the knockback from LTK.

    This is a much bigger deal than the knockback change to WoL because the knockback on WoL was tiny and only an annoyance while the knockback on LTK was huge and made the skill un-usable.

    Now, we have access to Spinning Flame Kick (high DPS line-nuke) and Vulture Claw Kick (PBAoE nuke) as new forms of damage-skills.

    This is awesome for several reasons ... the first is that -LTK cost gear makes LTK more efficient at turning spirit into damage than WoL.

    WoL - EW is currently 829+96 /40 = 23.125 %dmg per spirit
    LTK - SFK is 588 /30 = 19.6 %dmg per spirit
    If you have a single item with -5 LTK cost --
    LTK -SFK is now 588 /25 = 23.52 %dmg per spirit which is better than WoL.

    With the full suit of -19 LTK cost (very unlikely but w/e!)
    You get LTK - SFK is now 588 /11 = 53.45 %dmg per spirit.

    Wow! That is a lot!!

    Furthermore, these are both "main" skills that can be your major source of damage and they are Fire skills!! This means ilvl73 Magefist will effect them as well as Maximus and Axe of Sankis along with any other +fire damage items Blizz chooses to implement.

    All in all, I LOVE this change and will probably be moving to the LTK camp if I possibly can.

    Tempest Rush
    Tempest Rush Cost: 15 Spirit plus an additional 10 Spirit while channeling / Charge directly through your enemies dealing 155% weapon damage while running, knocking them back, and hobbling them, Slowing their movement by 60% for 2 seconds. / You run 25% weapon faster while channeling Tempest Rush.

    There are no actual changes to TR but people are freaking out over the "you run 25% faster while channeling" line so I wanted to clear this one up.

    TR already does this in game and this is just a tooltip clarification.

    If you don't believe me, take a TR rune that isn't Tailwind and run next to someone with the same movespeed as you and watch as you out-pace them. It's not your amazing hardware causing you to lag less, it's TR's base movespeed! :D

    Nice of them to confirm the 25% though!
    Interesting review, thanks for the upkeep, Sir Druin.

    However, data-mine changes are not final yet,
    they are still brainstorming and using placeholders.

    For example, 1337 damage on Barrage rune.
    Clearly a troll number.

    Here were my initial thoughts of these changes.
    Awesome review, thanks Druin!
    Didn't read it all, but you may have missed the crossing out of the Fists of Thunder having higher attack speed than other generators - ie nerf to aps, and explains the increased spirit/damage changes.

    edit: and congrats on being green, didn't notice before.
    Mmmmkay, that is enough formatting for now!

    Let me know what y'all think! :D

    09/16/2013 12:50 PMPosted by CountFury
    Interesting review, thanks for the upkeep, Sir Druin.


    However, data-mine changes are not final yet,
    they are still brainstorming and using placeholders.

    I agree that some things are obviously placeholders and I acknowledge that some of these changes probably won't see live ... but they are still interesting to discuss.

    For example, 1337 damage on Barrage rune.
    Clearly a troll number.

    I completely disagree. This number is still low enough that I am not sure I would take this rune in any non-PvP circumstance as is.

    If it is a placeholder for a lower number, this rune is not a good one.

    09/16/2013 12:54 PMPosted by Xiansai
    Awesome review, thanks Druin!

    Glad you liked it!

    Didn't read it all, but you may have missed the crossing out of the Fists of Thunder having higher attack speed than other generators - ie nerf to aps, and explains the increased spirit/damage changes.

    edit: and congrats on being green, didn't notice before.

    This is a very interesting take on the FoT changes!

    I assumed that the removal of that line of text was to make the tooltip less "frilly" and more "to the point." However, you could definitely interpret it that way ... that would be a pretty good change I think.

    It would help put FoT in line with other gens, especially if WotHF is sped up a bit.

    Very cool idea!!
    "Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing at all" ~ HK
    Druin, the happy monk
    09/16/2013 12:44 PMPosted by Druin
    This is both good and bad. You can now AoE with DS for 535% damage. You can now dash when there are no targets. These are awesome changes. However, it also costs a TON of spirit.

    With the Jawbreaker

    I could see builds being built around Dashing Strike, which would be a very high movement build.
    I completely disagree. This number is still low enough that I am not sure I would take this rune in any non-PvP circumstance as is.

    If it is a placeholder for a lower number, this rune is not a good one.

    Well, it's 1337% + 535%. So 1872% total.

    At any rate, it's the change I'm looking forward to most right now. It should allow TR+DS+EP builds to run a lot more smoothly, and make running no-gen a lot easier as well.
    09/16/2013 01:37 PMPosted by TianZi
    At any rate, it's the change I'm looking forward to most right now. It should allow TR+DS+EP builds to run a lot more smoothly, and make running no-gen a lot easier as well.

    What do you mean?

    It should make TR+DS far LESS easy to use because DS will cost even more spirit AND if you have DS it should really be your only method of transportation I would think?

    "Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing at all" ~ HK
    Druin, the happy monk
    Ya I made a post about DS as well since I'm concerned it's going to take what's amazing about DS (the escape with no cooldown) and make it much harder to do. Wait and see though I'm sure.

    The resource on kill change, though is AMAZING. In practice I do not know how well it work. But I will say, Witch Doctor's have a skill similar (Grave Injustice) and the 4 piece bonus from the Zuni set does the same thing. Both are almost universally used because they are just really really really really good. Nice to see it getting passed around.
    Druin--Fantastic review, thanks for taking the time to put this together!

    Given all the survivability buffs (many of them party oriented), I think new content is gonna hit really, really hard.

    One comment regarding Mystic Rhythm--If you DON'T use a dmg dealing spirit spender, it nearly doubles spirit gen for DW. This could have applications for combo strike builds that utilize LPSS and run double mantras with good spam effects (MOH, MOC?).

    With about 60 spirit per sec and LPSS buffs, wow.

    EDIT: I also like the fact that Mystic Rhythm makes spirit gen without stacking CC more of an option.
    Wasn't one of the leaked legendary affixes one that removed the spirit cost of TR? I think that could be really game changing as using TR really effectively usually required quite a bit different gear than a standard monk. Perhaps with this new item(s) you can use TR in many more builds.

    (Well if they ever fix the rubberbanding out of effects problem.)

    This is a very interesting take on the FoT changes!

    I assumed that the removal of that line of text was to make the tooltip less "frilly" and more "to the point." However, you could definitely interpret it that way ... that would be a pretty good change I think.

    It would help put FoT in line with other gens, especially if WotHF is sped up a bit.

    Very cool idea!!

    Unless they're trying to make FoT even MORE mandatory for builds outside Nirvana, it's almost certain that FoT is going to have its hidden IAS modifier reduced. Between the spirit generation buff, the damage buff, and the new wording in the skill, it seems very likely that Blizzard is going to be slowing the skill down (at least in this build of the game, nothing's final).

    Note: Flying Side Kick now has a 100% chance to stun. I do not think this is a viable rune so I do not think this change helps much.

    An on-demand AOE stun that doubles as a positioning skill? That could be huge. Spirit cost is admittedly a bit high, and IIRC the stun resist mechanics might make this less useful on Elites, but overall a 100% chance to stun all enemies in a 50-yard line could be pretty useful.

    Overall a great write-up though, I agree with most of it, especially the new rune for MoC. Spirit after Kill could solve a LOT of resource issues for the Monk. I think I discussed it with you (or maybe Vrkhyz) briefly, though my idea was more for an affix on gear that granted either a flat amount of spirit on kill, or bonus regen for a short period of time. Either way, that's almost certainly going to be the new rune I use for MoC.
    erm, I actually meant 1337 as in Leet. I can't believe you didn't know that.. -,-
    But w/e, carry on! :P
    09/16/2013 01:41 PMPosted by Druin
    At any rate, it's the change I'm looking forward to most right now. It should allow TR+DS+EP builds to run a lot more smoothly, and make running no-gen a lot easier as well.

    What do you mean?

    It should make TR+DS far LESS easy to use because DS will cost even more spirit AND if you have DS it should really be your only method of transportation I would think?

    "Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing at all" ~ HK
    Druin, the happy monk

    EP (Strong Spirit) builds are centered around killing the mobs with EP on them. Generally tag mob, loop around to collect more mobs, and kill it off within the time frame. That meant either DS or TR back to targeted mob followed by Bells. The new version of DS would simply allow clicking back on the mob for a near guaranteed kill. Tie this in with the possibility of 300 spirit from paragon levels, and EP in most cases will give even more spirit than it already does on live. Reclamation can even be added in (if spirit is even an issue at all). Currently on live a DS+Bells costs the same as the new DS by itself, while being a better controlled ability.

    I disagree on DS being the only movement, because of its cost, and TR is also easier to control, especially for shorter distances. I mean even now on live with the low cost, I still prioritize TR for movement over DS. With the new ground targeting system, DS -> TR should be more smooth due to the lack of attack at the end of DS. Based on the description you never "attack" with DS, but rather the enemies simply take damage. This should also help reduce rubberbanding with DS+TR builds.

    Even without the new weapon (which i likely won't use unless it comes on a high DPS 2H weapon), the cost should never come up as a real issue with an EP build, simply due to less wasted EPs.

    I'm almost certain they will do some large *change (nerf)* to the leaked DS. It's simply way too OP in my opinion, even without considering the weapon that refunds cost. Then again Blizz felt differently when I said the same with SmokeScreen during the original D3 beta, maybe they don't mind some broken things in the game when expansion is released.

    DS is shaping up like a "do everything" ability, and it actually does them all well. That should never happen. High single target damage, decent AoE damage, high mobility, distance closing, and how can you even die when you can just DS away from any remotly dangerous mobs?
    So many spirit regen options have opened up. Challenging part will be finding an effective spec to go with gearing.

    Any spec ideas druin?

    Mantra of Reclamation alone could clear my spec belt from needing any extra sr skills, allowing more focus in dps.
    Druin! I missed you and your sexy as !@#$ hair!

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