DH Experimenting

Posted by Member Khan on 12/2/12 12:27 AM #1
Posts: 1195

Just got to 60 and I'm trying new things (like in university).

The current build I'm using is what I call the Cluster FCUK (FCUK is a really cool clothing line if you don't know): Here

Current Stats:

http://i.imgur.com/hYVvi.jpg


Yeah, I know my armor and resists are low and I'm working on bringing them up but does anyone know if this is a viable Uber skillset? I can see serious potential for this DPS combined with CM wizards for Uber battles as I think I can bring the DPS to the 400k mark if I play my cards right (my DH profile should show the mediocre gear I currently have).

Any veteran DH input is appreciated.
Posted by Member sabin on 12/2/12 12:38 AM #2
Posts: 338

Leave it to you to have such great stats on your fresh 60... nice job.

If you plan to play with CM WZs, wouldn't cluster bombs be better? I thought when the target was still you could hit them with a bunch of those hits at once, but I could be wrong.

Are you gonna add some good LoH or steal? I'm guessing gloom wouldn't be enough to deal with SB's reflect - probably you'd have disc issues given the length of the fight.

Depending on what the rest of the party needs, the 15% reduction turret and/or numbing traps can be really helpful for party survival, so you have some options if you can't quite go pure DPS. Also, I think bola shot would be much better than grenades. Much stronger, a nice stun, and if the rest of the party can keep the ubers close, you get the AoE damage.
Posted by Member Khan on 12/2/12 12:55 AM #3
Posts: 1195

Yeah, I need to look for some LOH items. I figured Shadow Power's 15% lifesteal would be good enough since I run much less on my Wiz (under 3%) but I need to do actual hard testing to see if thats viable. I'll try the bola thunderball thing for the stun but if 3 CM's can keep things frozen then maybe I can bring the ultra pain (want see if I can really top 400k on this) while the CM's keep them caged.
Posted by Member sabin on 12/2/12 01:11 AM #4
Posts: 338

Does your WZ crit for 575%? Just wondering if those are gonna be rough to deal with, especially if cluster arrow crits. And if you use 2 of those sentries on him, that's 410% being reflected back at you that isn't gonna contribute to life steal.

And I'm sure you'll be OK while gloom is active, but how will it last the whole fight without preparation or something? Are you using nat's legacy set or do you think your life will drop slow enough that you can manage not using gloom every 7-9 seconds or so?

Anyway, the reflect damage is the only thing that worries me, it seems like a really good build for everyone else. Maybe some of the more experienced DH can comment.
Posted by Member Khan on 12/2/12 09:08 AM #5
Posts: 1195

Yeah, I think I'm going to take out the turret and replace it with preparation. I didn't feel the turret was contributing that much to my overall survivability anyway.
Posted by Member sabin on 12/2/12 11:17 AM #6
Posts: 338

Posted by Khan at 12/02/2012 09:08 AM

Yeah, I think I'm going to take out the turret and replace it with preparation. I didn't feel the turret was contributing that much to my overall survivability anyway.


Well nothing even comes close for single target DPS. If it wouldn't kill you to use sentry, I'd say it's better for DPS than marked for death, considering how much higher your DPS will probably be compared to the rest of the team. Can you just test the build out on the regular SB? I'm assuming the reflect works the same on both.
Posted by Member Khan on 12/2/12 11:46 AM #7
Posts: 1195

I'm using the Death Toll rune with Marked for Death to get the extra 1% lifesteal. When turrets can proc lifesteal, I think I'll take out the boar and add a turret. By then I should have found more AR anyway.
Posted by Member ecocd on 12/2/12 05:55 PM #8
Posts: 1059

If we can get philosophical for a bit, make sure you're playing as a DH and not just trying to imitate a Barb or Monk. Each class has its own strengths and lobbing Cluster Arrows at monsters from 20 yards away isn't really taking advantage of the skills and equipment open to a DH. I don't think you'll ever be able to pump out more damage than a Barb or Monk straight up so making dps the sole aim of your DH will just result in frustration. Find the skills that you enjoy which make the DH unique and build around those.

The Guardian Turret Sentries, as sabin mentioned, are something that are unique to a DH. Marked for Death is another skill a DH can provide that the other classes cannot. You don't want to forsake dps entirely, obviously, so Spike Traps and Cluster Arrows - Cluster Bombs are some other nice DH skills to use. Theoretically, you want to be able to make a case for why a party would want to choose your DH over someone else's Barb, Monk or WD, and you'll lose a dps contest more often than not.

That's this vet DH's advice, anyway.

Regarding the rest of the thread:

Sentries are never going to proc lifesteal, btw, but they will stop reflecting damage. Life for DH's will be much easier when that happens (on the other hand, it will also take away the last of the thrill of danger with it). I've played with Bola Shot Thunderball and I don't think it's all that useful for CC until you hit at least 3.0 aps and with a 2H XBows, that's a tall order. It's a very strong novelty skill, but still just a novelty skill.

I think another one of sabin's suggestions about learning to effectively use Cluster Bombs will probably be a better use of your 2H XBow build. If you don't use the Cluster Bombs rune, however, you'll find that Spike Trap - Echoing Blast is going to do far more damage to a stationary target than Cluster Arrow for the Hatred cost.
Posted by Member Khan on 12/2/12 06:25 PM #9
Posts: 1195

I'm starting to experiment now with a stun build using Dawn's 2.0% stun and a Calamity. Using Hungering arrow and the "Thunderbola" as part of this build also seems viable.

The cluster arrows actually aren't the main part of my previous build. It was the constant spamming of the grenades/cluster grenades while occasionally shooting a cluster arrow when needed. I think adding the grenades rune to the arrow makes sense to make it a double grenade build. I'm definitely going to see if it works in Inferno (I'm still in Hell).

Its a good thing that sentries at least won't reflect damage. It was an illogical decision for them to have something that reflects damage but cannot achieve lifesteal or life on hit.

I'm not sure why you think I'm trying to imitate a barb or monk. Achieving high DPS just for the sake of achieving DPS is pretty much a goal in itself. For me, I go as high as I can and then reduce DPS based on usable skills. Obviously I don't have the best gear for my DH now so I know I can get more operationally efficient so we'll see if I can get usable skills with the high DPS. I think trying for both high DPS and IAS seems viable right now. Hitting 3.0 APS is crazy fast and I love it.
Posted by Member ecocd on 12/2/12 08:19 PM #10
Posts: 1059

Fair enough. 2H XBow and cluster arrow give the flashes DPS so a lot of people switching from other classes just go for the big number. DH aren't particularly good at that.

Welcome to the Speed Demon Club. We're accepting all new members.
Be forewarned. The thirst for speed becomes difficult to slake. 3.0 is awesome...until you've tried 3.3. Aw yeah. That's the stuff. Anyone got any 3.6? How do I get 4.0?! WHERE'S THE DAMN FRENZY SHRINE? MOAR SPEEEEED!!!
Fyi, I managed ge 4.1 on a frenzy shrine. 3 sentries and me =16 arrows / second. Sweeeeeeet.
Posted by Member Khan on 12/2/12 08:41 PM #11
Posts: 1195

I'm at 3.19 with my current setup. DPS dropped to 220k from 300k with the manti. The grenades proc lifesteal and crit like crazy at this speed. Think I'm going to steal some DPS items off my wiz and see how far I can go without buying anything.
Posted by Member eastdragon42 on 12/3/12 12:12 AM #12
Posts: 413

Haha, for a sec there I had a momentary lapse of reason & totally forgot about the passive Sharpshooter (since I haven't used that skill in ages) and was in awe that you'd somehow managed to attain 100% Critical Hit Chance on gear alone for a newly made level 60 DH....! :-)
Posted by Member Khan on 12/3/12 07:51 AM #13
Posts: 1195

@eastdragon42 Yeah, its a really good passive! I just got to Inferno last night.
Posted by Member eastdragon42 on 12/3/12 05:31 PM #14
Posts: 413

Posted by Khan at 12/03/2012 07:51 AM

@eastdragon42 Yeah, its a really good passive! I just got to Inferno last night.


Congrats on getting your DH to Inferno last night! Yes, it's a good passive, though unfortunately there are way too many good passives for DHs that I eventually had to drop that one. Once you get your CC fairly high, you'll find there are even better passives to use than Sharpshooter...
Posted by Member Khan on 12/3/12 08:20 PM #15
Posts: 1195

@eastdragon42 My CC is at 49.5 without Sharpshooter. How high would you recommend me go before taking out sharpshooter? it seems really useful even at this level.
Posted by Member sabin on 12/3/12 09:10 PM #16
Posts: 338

@Khan You're over 3APS with 50% CC, so you should on average crit (more than) once every 1.5 seconds. SS gives 3% per second, so you're getting about a 4.5% CC increase. Even though you'll have higher % when there's a break in the fighting, this isn't all that significant IMO considering you crit every other shot anyway.

Have you played around with steady aim? I'm a huge fan of it, and 20 yards really isn't all that large of an area. You can view the change in DPS on your character sheet to get used to the distance, and 20% damage should be ridiculous with your DPS.
Posted by Member eastdragon42 on 12/3/12 09:33 PM #17
Posts: 413

Posted by Khan at 12/03/2012 08:20 PM

@eastdragon42 My CC is at 49.5 without Sharpshooter. How high would you recommend me go before taking out sharpshooter? it seems really useful even at this level.


I remember wondering that myself several months ago when I was still using a 2-handed bow (& later, a 2-handed crossbow). Came across this thread while researching this problem:

http://gaming.stackexchange.com/questions/74317/when-does-sharpshooter-become-useless

It's a bit dated, but someone had crunched the numbers in Excel & calculated that you're not getting as much benefit from the passive if you're at 30% CC or above. Obviously there are other factors, such as how much you're kiting, how fast you're shooting, etc., so take that number with a grain of salt.

You're correct when you say that Sharpshooter seems really useful even at your high CC level; if for nothing else, it gives you that huge burst of 100% crit damage at the start of a fight. The only question is whether something else might be even more useful. I mean, your CC is hovering right at 50%, so basically every other shot you're making is going to crit for massive damage. Looking at your DH's profile, I see you're using Grenades, so Grenadier isn't a bad choice for passive w/ its bonus hatred regeneration (especially since your primary skill, Rapid Fire, drains hatred quite rapidly). Another good option might be Steady Aim for the flat out +20% damage bonus as long as enemies aren't within 10' of you. Or Perfectionist, which reduces the Discipline cost of all skills by 10% while increasing your Life, Armor, and all of your resistances by 10%.

btw, another good thread to check out if you like math is this one: http://eu.battle.net/d3/en/forum/topic/4507471812
:)
Posted by Member Khan on 12/3/12 09:50 PM #18
Posts: 1195

@sabin Yeah, 20 yards is nothing. If its to scale our characters must be about 20 yards tall. Works really well though!

@eastdragon42 I originally was on Grenadier. I may give it a go again. Perfectionist seems best for now. I'm still getting accustomed to the lack of shield-tech/life restore abilities this class has so I think I need that and my boar for now.

On a side note, I was trying out an Azurerath and shield hoping that the chance to freeze would be effective but the attack speed and damage left much to be desired.
Posted by Member eastdragon42 on 12/3/12 11:19 PM #19
Posts: 413

Posted by Khan at 12/03/2012 09:50 PM

@sabin Yeah, 20 yards is nothing. If its to scale our characters must be about 20 yards tall. Works really well though!

@eastdragon42 I originally was on Grenadier. I may give it a go again. Perfectionist seems best for now. I'm still getting accustomed to the lack of shield-tech/life restore abilities this class has so I think I need that and my boar for now.

On a side note, I was trying out an Azurerath and shield hoping that the chance to freeze would be effective but the attack speed and damage left much to be desired.


If for some reason you decide to try Azurerath & shield again in the future, another passive worth considering is Cull the Weak. Since the cold damage of the sword should slow most enemies, you'll reap that extra 15% damage bonus, which should help to improve your DPS. Also, some shields have bonuses to DH skills too--try grabbing one of those.
Posted by Member sabin on 12/4/12 01:33 AM #20
Posts: 338

Or if you wanna go with a Manticore, and have a spare 12 bil...
Posted by Member ecocd on 12/4/12 06:48 AM #21
Posts: 1059

One key to remember with SS is that when it triggers, the bonus to CC you receive is active for 1 full second. If you sit around and wait 17 seconds between fights to get to 100% CC with SS, you'll be guaranteed to crit on every hit within 1 second of the first hit. If you're firing in a constant stream at a stationary target with just over 3.0 aps, that means you'll be guaranteed 3 opportunties to crit with the SS trigger. (If you trigger it at +18% bonus from SS, your crit chance on each shot within the next 1 second will hit with a +18% CC bonus.)

This doesn't only apply to arrows, however, it applies to all attacks that can trigger crits which include Spike Trap and Cluster Arrow. In theory, you could stack 3 Spike Traps and at the exact moment an enemy triggers them, fire 2 Cluster Arrows at them and crit on about 1425% weapon damage (275%*3 + 300%*2). Assuming even a moderate 200% CD, that's 4275% weapon damage. DH ain't considered trappers for nothing.

More realistically, you'll be able to guarantee 2 crits on Cluster Arrow if you wait until SS has filled your CC up to 100%. The true power of SS is with the quick, heavy damage skills and an aps above 2.5 or so. 2 sets of Grenades, 2 volleys of Multishot or Evasive Fire-Covering Fire would likewise take advantage of SS. If you shift to Hungering Arrow or move down to 2.1 aps, for instance, SS isn't very effective. Ditto for Strafe and Rapid Fire, for the most part (and Bola Shot hits once, then explodes 1.5 seconds later so it's entirely worthless).
Posted by Member Khan on 12/4/12 07:30 AM #22
Posts: 1195

@eastdragon42 Cull the Weak! Totally forgot about that. I don't think I'll be using the sword again anyway. If any of you guys want it, let me know. They don't go over 900 dps and I think mine is at that.

Posted by sabin at 12/04/2012 01:33 AM

Or if you wanna go with a Manticore, and have a spare 12 bil...


This is the Manti I'm using when I want to hit above 250kdps. Found it shortly after the new patch. http://i.imgur.com/978NN.jpg

Posted by ecocd at 12/04/2012 06:48 AM

In theory, you could stack 3 Spike Traps and at the exact moment an enemy triggers them, fire 2 Cluster Arrows at them and crit on about 1425% weapon damage (275%*3 + 300%*2). Assuming even a moderate 200% CD, that's 4275% weapon damage.


This I might try. Sounds difficult.

Posted by Member sabin on 12/4/12 08:45 AM #23
Posts: 338

Yeah, I remembered you had a nice one already. That extra 400 base DPS, though, is pretty nuts.
Posted by Member Khan on 12/4/12 08:50 AM #24
Posts: 1195

I would like to try a truly godly one like that 12 bil one. I'm sure I can find one in the keeps someplace.
Posted by Member eastdragon42 on 12/4/12 09:28 PM #25
Posts: 413

Posted by Khan at 12/04/2012 07:30 AM

@eastdragon42 Cull the Weak! Totally forgot about that. I don't think I'll be using the sword again anyway. If any of you guys want it, let me know. They don't go over 900 dps and I think mine is at that.

Posted by ecocd at 12/04/2012 06:48 AM

In theory, you could stack 3 Spike Traps and at the exact moment an enemy triggers them, fire 2 Cluster Arrows at them and crit on about 1425% weapon damage (275%*3 + 300%*2). Assuming even a moderate 200% CD, that's 4275% weapon damage.


This I might try. Sounds difficult.



That sword looks like it'd be a nice thing to put on one's Templar follower due to its freezing ability. Then the Templar could do the same thing as a Scoundrel w/ one of the freezing crossbows (cannot even begin to remember how it's spelled...)

As for the Spike trap / cc / cd synergy -- yah, with a high enough crit percentage, you'd be surprised at how quickly those damage numbers can spike up.

Also, if you do decide to reinstate Cull of the Weak in place of Sharpshooter (& as opposed to Steady Aim), you might want to consider finding a slot for Caltrops again. I know most DHs use Jagged Spikes for the extra damage, but I personally like to use Bait the Trap for the additional 10% bonus to CC.

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5 users posted in this thread: eastdragon42, ecocd, Khan, ninjax, sabin

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