Diablo 3 Witch Doctor Life Leech Per Hit by Skill Guide

Diablo 3 Witch Doctor Life Leech Per Hit by Skill Guide by Karisu

Did an experiment with a 100 life per hit weapon with various skills to see how much benefit each skill gets from the listed value, as a “hit” is a little ambiguous. WIP

/tick – per tick, or each time the skill does damage for a Damage Over Time spell. The amount of ticks you get for the duration of the skill is dependent on weapon speed.
/enemy – per enemy, for Area of Effect spells. Each enemy hit by the spell is counted.
/cast – per cast, generally for multiple projectile spells. This is the total potential the spell can leech assuming every projectile hits something.

Primary Skills:

Poison Dart – 200%
Splinters – 33%/dart (100%/cast)
Numbing Dart – 200%
Spined Dart – 200%
Flaming Dart – 100%
Snake to the Face – 200%

Corpse Spiders – 16% for each JAR hitting something. Individual spider hits do nothing. Also nothing if you miss with the jar. Unfortunately makes a mediocre spell even crappier… I originally started this because I thought per hit life leech would be great with spiders.
Leaping Spiders – 16%
Spider Queen – 30%/enemy/tick
Widowmakers – 16%
Medusa Spiders – 16%
Blazing Spiders –

Plague of Toads – 66%/toad (200%/cast)
Explosive Toads – 66%/toad (200%/cast)
Toad of Hugeness – 0%
Rain of Toads – 50%/enemy/tick
Addling Toads
Toad Affinity

Firebomb – 66%/enemy
Flash Fire – 20%/bounce (140%/cast)
Roll the Bones – 22%/enemy
Fire Pit – 66%/enemy/tick
Pyrogeist – 33%/projectile (this thing shoots out a lot of little fireballs, I didn’t count them)
Ghost Bomb

Secondary Skills:

Grasp of the Dead – 16.5%/enemy/tick
Unbreakable Grasp – 16.5%/enemy/tick
Groping Eels – 16.5%/enemy/tick
Death Is Life – 16.5%/enemy/tick
Desperate Grasp – 16.5%/enemy/tick
Rain of Corpses –

Firebats – 16.5%/enemy/tick
Dire Bats – 33%/enemy
Vampire Bats – 25%/enemy/tick?
Plague Bats – 33%+? This one is hard to test because I have very little mana. it does increase the longer you apply it.
Hungry Bats – 33%/bat
Cloud of Bats

Haunt – 100% per target hit and none on the DOT. If it acquires another target after the first one dies, it will count as another hit.
Same for all runes – Not confirmed, but very likely

Locust Swarm – 33% per target, same as haunt. Each time it spreads it will hit, but no bonus from the DOT.
Pestilence – 33%
Devouring Swarm
Cloud of Insects
Diseased Swarm
Searing Locusts – 33%


Zombie Charger – 50%/enemy
Leperous Zombie – 50%/enemy/tick
Undeath – 50%/enemy
Wave of Zombies – 8%/zombie/enemy/hit – I’m not sure, but it seemed like these guys can hit the same enemy more than once
Explosive Beast – 50%/enemy
Zombie Bears

Researched by Elegy

Spirit Barrage – 100%
Spirit is Willing – 100%
Well of Souls – 33% per soul (4 total)
Phantasm – 25% per enemy per tick
Phlebotomize – 100%

Fetish Army – 0%
Fetish Ambush – 40% on cast if it hits a mob (Unsure about this one!)

Summon Zombie Dogs – 0%
Rabid Dogs – 100% per enemy per tick of the DoT (With a single ZD attacking an enemy, I noticed a 200% tick right after every attack, which may mean the DoTs were overlapping.)
Final Gift – 0%
Life Link – 0%
Burning Dogs – 100% per enemy per tick of the AoE aura
Leeching Beasts –

Sacrifice – 33% (per enemy? These were tested on single targets.)
Black Blood – 33% (per enemy?)
Next of Kin – 33% (per enemy?)
Pride – 50% (Glitch? per enemy?)
For the Master – ?? (appears to be glitched and healing me for LESS than it should, should have healed for 3x 3154, but only got back 9260)
Provoke the Pack

Gargantuan – 0%
Humongoid – 0%
Restless Giant – 0%
Wrathful Protector – 0%
Big Stinker – 100% per enemy per tick of the AoE aura
Bruiser – 0%

Wall of Corpses – 16% per enemy per tick
Barricade – 20% per tick
Unrelenting grip – 16% and 33% per tick
Creepers – saw 16% and 33% per tick on the wall, the adds provided no ticks.
Pile on –
Dead Rush –

Acid Cloud – Very tricky and needs a lot more testing! I think the Acid Cloud and Acid Rain might be effected by distance from the center. Appears to be 166% near the middle, down to 16% at the edges
Acid Rain – Most ticks around 280% near middle
Lob Blob Bomb – Blob ticks around 33% but saw 16% and 50% as well.
Slow Burn – Ticks of 16%, 33%, and 50%
Kiss of Death – Ticks of 16%, 33%, and 50%
Corpse Bomb

Additional Info

On Sacrifice – I was getting 16% per enemy
On Acid Rain – These numbers are all over the place, but they are always a multiple of 40% for me, so I’m just gonna say the base is 40% and it ticks A LOT faster than other spells.

Non Damaging Skills (Soul Harvest, Horrify) – 0%. However, SH runed for damage does get 25% per target up to 5.

Note on pets – Zombie dogs and gargantuan hits will not give any life. However, flaming zombie dogs aura is 100% per enemy per tick per dog!! I don’t have big stinker yet but I imagine it is the same. Potentially huge, but good luck keeping them alive…

vs Life Leech % – Leech % is pretty straight forward. The more damage skill does, the more you will leech. As you can see, some skills benefit much more than others from life per hit (flaming zombie dogs, flash fire), while others benefit more from leech % (spiders, locust swarm), so which to get really depends on your build and what skills you use.

Fierce Loyalty – Currently the on hit heal no longer works to heal the dogs. Very sad.

Other on hit effects – Flaming Zombie Dogs and Big Stinker WILL proc on hit effects (fear, blind, ect) via their aura, but NOT on their attack.

Clarification regarding Pets, Fierce Loyalty, and Life On Hit –

Pet damage auras did and currently still do heal you for 100% of your Life On Hit, for each enemy and for each pet. This can give you thousands of hp per second, and you can make a very effective tanky WD build pre-Hell difficulty with this.

Why pre-Hell only? Because it is still very difficult to keep Zombie Dogs alive without huge amounts of resists and armor. In case anyone missed the other threads, vitality does nothing for pets. Why Zombie Dogs? Because they allow for up to four times the effect, as opposed to the Gargantuan’s one.

Previously some people reported that the Fierce Loyalty passive would let the pets heal themselves as well as you, from the Life On Hit proc. This allowed them to stay alive and tank extremely effectively even in Hell mode. This has apparently been removed, which makes pets (and Fierce Loyalty) once again not viable in later difficulties.

Edit: This change was not in the hotfix list. It may have been a bug to begin with. I was never able to confirm the massive pet healing from Life on Hit and Fierce Loyalty myself, but it should have been pretty obvious and apparently multiple people witnessed it, so I believe it WAS working (or bugged) at some point.

Other on hit effects still work with pet auras. This is actually really great, as you can stack freeze, stun, fear, knockback, ect. on different slots and really get a ton of procs. However, as before without the Fierce Loyalty healing, zombie dogs die too quickly in tougher difficulties.

Regarding what is a bug or not, I really can’t say because Blizzard won’t grace us WDs with information regarding what goes on in the minds of their developers, so we really have no idea how things are intended to work in the first place.

My personal opinions:

I think that allowing Life Per Hit to work with Fierce Loyalty would be great. It would MAYBE give Zombie Dogs a chance in high difficulties (I think they would still get one shotted in Inferno without enough defense!) and allows us to have more fun with our builds. Not to mention making Fierce Loyalty actually have a use at all.

I think that 100% life/hit/tick/enemy of the pet auras could be an oversight or a bug, especially when pet attacks do not count at all. A lower number could be reasonable. I would hate to see this get nerfed though… its not like this build allows us to beat Inferno solo less than a week after release like some other classes. It also in a way requires use of Zombie Dogs to really make a difference (4x aura), and we all know how viable taking Zombie Dogs are later.

I think that Life Per Hit should proc off spider hits. I think that Zombie Dogs should scale with Vitality. But now I feel like I’m just being greedy and wishing for buffs for my favorite skills so that I can actually use them. On a side note, I have now joined the dark side of VQ spam to progress through Hell difficulty, with great reluctance. VQ builds makes me feel dirty.

Now that all that is out of the way and the list is fairly comprehensive, I’d like to move on to conclusions and builds!

Disclaimer – I do not claim any of this makes a viable solo Inferno build! This information is for those who wish to use life leech to find effective skills to use it with!

With certain skills, Heal per Hit will give you much more life than Life Leech %. This is the primary conclusion I was testing for with this experiment.

You get much more healing from the various Poison Dart runes that tick over time. Flaming Darts and Splinters actually get much less.

Rain of Toads gives really good healing, because it has a good %, AOE and stacks with itself over time. Check out Orban’s build! http://us.battle.net/d3/en/forum/topic/5149009942. I’ve tried this myself and enjoyed it, although I can’t vouch for Inferno Viability.

I imagine with a Vision Quest build, Acid Rain will heal for tons as well in a similar manner to Rain of Toads.

And last but not least, PETS! Pet damage aura runes give you insane amounts of healing. In addition, pet auras will proc on hit effects at staggering rates. The problem is keeping them alive… Diablo 3 Witch Doctor Pet Stats Scaling Guide for more information on that.

My thoughts on Inferno and game design – Again, a disclaimer that I am not in Inferno yet. I believe Inferno is gear dependent with an emphasis on Defense (and Resistance) rather than Vitality. This has been discussed in other threads (true diminishing returns on Vitality, and not on Defense). I am further convinced of this as most defensive healing skills, pots, ect. are FLAT numbers rather than a %, which would be better for stacking tons of life. With flat numbers, having huge amounts of damage mitigation will make each point of life healed that much more effective, as long as there is a reasonable amount of life to cushion a number of hits.

We Witch Doctors don’t have a gimmick like other classes to clear inferno with just straight damage less than a week after release. However I think as people get geared properly, Witch Doctors will really shine as tanky dps with great utility and CC. I made this thread because I believe that life leeching will be an integral part of this type of build. I hope everyone can use the information here to be creative and look past the “OMG WD SUCK IM GONNA USE ANOTHER CLASS” and “VQ OR UR DOIN IT WRONG” type of thinking down the road.

I look forward to the day I can deliver some exploding Flaming Zombie Dogs into Diablo’s face in Inferno. Currently, that day seems very, very far away.

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2 Responses

  1. Troelses says:

    corpse bomb (acid cloud rune) seems to be 85% per enemy hit

  2. Anonymous says:

    thanks for the insight on how the spells are effected, the vampiric witch doctor/ tankdoctor seems more viable now!

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