Diablo 3 Wizard Max DPS Builds Guide by Katrisa
So I’m getting really excited about Diablo 3 coming and I started to do some theory crafting. Specifically I did my best to learn the beliefs from Beta of how damage maths out and then sat down with some of my favorite builds and some I believe to be top dps and simulated 30-42 seconds of not stop combat. Also for anyone currious, I’m a software performance engineer in RL, so generating and interpreting simulated calculations and graphs between multiple interacting parts is something I do every day ;-)
I figured out that builds without signatures are perfectly viable so long as you have a core spell that costs 20 AP or less, and the correct support talents. I number of folks have proposed such builds, but I haven’t seen any fully simulated examples of the damage or uptime.
Some stipulations: All of my calculations assume a 1.0 attack speed weapon. I personally believe you will net the best damage with either a 1.0 attack speed two hand weapon (or slower) or a 1.2 speed 1h weapon with offhand. Slower attack speed nets higher AP efficiency, and higher AP efficiency nets more damage so long as you don’t AP cap.
Also these computations currently assume a single target. Multi target won’t be much more difficult, its just a matter of deciding on how many targets are “valid” I’m guessing something in the 4-5 range.
Also I haven’t done indepth analysis of close vs long range hits. For instance shock pulse is extremely damaging at point blank range (0 yards) because it often hits with 2-3 bolts, resulting in what is essentially massive damage. But only 5 yards out it will usually only hit with 1-2 bolts, 10-15 yards 1-0 bolts. This is also true for spells like Death Blossom, Arcane orbit, Energy Twister, and Meteor Shower.
Also It’s not clear to me how much time is consumed casting Slow Time and Diamond Skin alone or back to back. So I assume each takes one second, though I’m quite sure its less than that.
So here are some builds to yell and argue about ;-)
***Please note I consider builds 1 and 2 not very well rounded or viable for actual play. Builds 3 and 4 should be perfectly viable, but they could stand to have some utility improvements (more snare, teleport at the cost of slightly lower dps, or some other defensive). They can easily be changed to use a different AE of choice which may work just as well with the rest of the build.
1) First up highest DPS build I can see possible, though as we know the targeting issues will make it erratic and possibly lower DPS than other builds Deathblossom forever!
Damage for this build is approximate 937% per sec at 86% damage uptime with 14% taken for buffs.
This build can cast non stop while casting buffs off cooldown. I’m not sure how useful this build will be or how viable. But it has the potential to cause more damage than an other build, I think hybridizing Deathblossom into builds will be very strong. Evocation is not needed in the build to maintain AP, but it does raise the damage slightly. Also “power of the storm” would be the first choice you would want to swap out for more utility since all builds should have some movement which equates to AP regen time (AKA downtime).
2) Second up is the highest single target build outside of the weird one above. Snow blast forever!
Damage for this build is approximate 455% per sec at 88% damage uptime with 12% taken for buffs.
Again this build can cast non-stop while casting buffs off cooldown. Damage is wonderfully wicked, but no AE. Again “power of the storm” would be the first choice to swap for more utlity.
3) Third on my list is the combined build of Snow Blast and Death Blossom:
Damage for this build is approximately
455% per sec with Snow Blast (during uptime)
937% per sec with Death Blossom (during uptime)
Max uptime is 72% with 14 seconds of pause over 50 second to maintain an equal level of AP.
Overall DPS with snowblast over 50 seconds would be372% per second.
This is a simple combination of the top two giving really amazing single target DPS with potentially super damaging AE. This is probably the highest damaging combined build but suffers from erraticness of Death Blossom non-targeting.
4) Last is a different strategy, more controlled using the highest AP/damage ratio single target spell combined with the highest damage spell which still maintains a high AP/damage ratio:
Damage for this build is approximately 397% per sec with a combination of Ray and Shower and 88% damage uptime with 12% taken for buffs.
What I noticed is that a number of folks on the forum are correct, AP use generates more damage than signature (which is logical) so what I realized is using your AP more efficiently will net more damage (AP/Damage ratio). So Ray – Cold blood has the higest AP/damage ratio other than Explosive – Unleashed (which has a cooldown). But Using Cold blood with an AP efficient build results in something funny, Cold blood will cost 9 AP in this build and you regenerate 12 AP a second (net +3 AP/sec). When you pop Prism, Cold blood will cost 2 AP and you will regenerate a net 10 AP/sec).
What this means is you can use Cold blood and combine a high powered AE spell. Instead of dropping power of the storm (which provides a 25% AP reduction in Cold blood, which makes its AP/damage ratio even crazier) you drop Familiar – Spark Flint, the lowest DPS increase in this build. Now you replace the empty slot with the highest AP/damage spell with a high enough AP cost to drain out the additional AP. This appears to be one of the Meteor spells in this order according to my calculations: Meteor Shower > Star Pact > Comet. Meteor shower in this build has an unbuffed damage ratio of 9.3 damage / 1 AP. Comet has a ratio of 6.24 damage / 1 AP (including the 1.2 cold damage buff Meteor Shower wouldn’t get). So of the two Meteor shower is the clear paper math winner.
What you then do with the build is drop Meteor showers to lower your AP, then cast cold blood and prism to regen back up to cast more Meteor showers. The simulated damage and ap usage over 42 seconds works out fantastically. Also unlike a snow blast build, this builds damage during up time will go up as you move around more (because you will be able to drop more Meteor showers with any excess AP).
I strongly believe this is the sexiest Inferno build I’ve built with extremely high killing power for AE and single target, with healthy survival capabilities.Other Diablo 3 Articles
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