The Exploder

Discussion in 'Witch Doctor Builds' started by Raspbuten, Mar 12, 2012.

  1. Raspbuten Member

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    http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/witch-doctor#bcYSif!bZW!abcYcY

    This is a build I'm experimenting with currently.

    Unlike most traditional Witch Doctor builds, you want your doctor in the middle of everything.
    Typical fight starts by summoning zombie dogs and having Posion Spiders/Plague Toads at the ready.
    Engage packs by throwing a few spiders out in the direction the zombie dogs move to, and begin to close range.
    Once up-close, begin tossing out plague toads as close to mobs as possible. The more toads the faster they die. As your dogs continue to move away, repeat with Poison Spiders and Plague Toads.

    This is fairly effective, even for what I consider a below-average damage dealing build. While using 0 debuffs your Witch Doctor is very vulnerable, a fully fleshed out build might include runes for increases to health (Leeching Beasts, For the Master) or perhaps switching a skill out for Hex/Grasp of the Dead.

    Primarily I did not include debuffs to give itemization most of the power here. With no debuffs, thorns damage becomes a viable option (provided that thorns is viable). Alternatively, stacking defensive stats (reduction, health) or damage could result in huge benefits as well.
  2. Raspbuten Member

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    This build has been updated. Not sure how to do this from the d3builds interface.

    http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/witch-doctor#afYSRZ!ceW!bYbcac

    This is still primarily focusing on explosion damage, but instead utilizes one spammable attack (Poison Dart) with Zombie Dogs/Sacrifice as the main AE damage dealer.

    The beauty of this build is that it utilizes several combos. First, it uses Gruesome Feast, coupled with Death is Life and Final Gift runes to constantly keep health globes plentiful and your damage boost maxed as often as possible. Secondly, it uses Pierce the Veil to increase damage even more, and offsets the mana cost with the Swallow Your soul rune. The Sacrifice skill working in tandem with Provoke the Pack further increases damage output even more, and adding a 4th dog via Zombie Handler now makes keeping that boost maxed for longer periods of time. Zombie Charger now also adds a Zombie dog synergizing much of the zombie handling abilities.

    Now with this high int, high damage burst build, you can really wreak havoc. At this point Poison Dart is interchangeable with just about anything, but since you're focusing on maintaining your int burst Poison Dart seemed to make the most sense. With Pierce the Veil, I opted to go for the mana gain from Spined Dart, but you could potentially switch this out for Splinters for multi-target damage or Flaming Dart for super high fire damage.

    I would argue that a solid witch doctor is going to utilize at least one of the combos mentioned to maintain high damage.
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  3. Jon Moderator

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    Users can't update links but I can, I've updated it to reflect your changes.
  4. Raspbuten Member

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    Cool, Thanks.

    Is it possible to update the blurb with the first sentence in my post?



    Thanks!
  5. Jon Moderator

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    Done. I've also added it to the new build guide section for builds that have a bit more information about them.
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  6. Raspbuten Member

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    With the advent of patch 15, Corpse Spiders has become a legitimate "spammable" skill. Along with Plague Toads, either of these could be substituted for poison dart.

    Personally, I prefer Plague Toads and then Corpse Spiders, to keep up with the theme of explosions doing damage. Ultimately it will come down to preference, and damage output on release.
  7. Jon Moderator

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    I guess it'll come down to whether or not you need poison or physical damage (PT vs CS). I still prefer Poison Dart over the 2 as it gives me the choice of who to attack from range.
  8. Raspbuten Member

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    It looks like some of the ids on skills changed, for whatever reason as some of the passives I had originally planned on aren't in the build anymore...hmm.

    Anyway I came here to update after playing with Sacrifice and Soul Harvest in Beta. It's safe to say that any DPS Witch Doctor will be using Soul Harvest. Even with some 16 DPS weapons I was able to reach 68 DPS with Soul Harvest on, which is pretty decent number for the previously gimped Witch Doctor.

    The focus again is the main Witch Doctor Combos which are as follows:

    Grasp of the Dead : Death is Life + Gruesome Feast -- I usually walk into a pack of monsters hit Soul Harvest and immediately Grasp of the Dead. Any monsters that die have an increased chance to drop a health globe, with the added bonus that health globes add damage via a max of 50% more int. Since you're already boosted with Soul Harvest we're talking massive intelligence damage bonus here.

    Sacrifice : Next of Kin + Circle of Life -- This was something I discovered while actually playing in the beta. It's almost unnecessary to use Summon Zombie Dogs with Circle of Life. The rate at which dogs spawn is high enough that as you slaughter packs of mobs you can use Sacrifice at the start of almost every other mob pack. Adding Next of Kin allows you to summon 1 dog for every 3 sacrificed without needing to cast Zombie Dogs. This cycle is the main focus for the build.

    Typically you'll hit a pack of mobs, use Soul Harvest followed by Grasp of the Dead , and then Sacrifice to start taking down mobs in packs. As zombie dogs spawn you can sacrfice them again, and as long as enemies and dogs are dying, more will spawn.

    From here I added some flavor to the build. Since I'm using Pierce the Veil for the 20% increased damage, in general, you'll be spiking a lot, but you have to watch out for mana. Since Sacrifice is Free, the only mana you'll be spending is your initial Soul Harvest and Grasp of the Dead. To keep up with the idea of explosions plus mana-free abilities, I chose Plague Toads as my main spam attack. They are tough to navigate; They tend to go wherever they want, and on bosses like the Skeleton King they often hop around missing him completely. But they are fun to watch, and a break from the norm.

    In the form of more flavor, I added Spirit Walk which you can use directly after casting Grasp the Dead, and with the Umbral Shock rune, when you re-enter the Physical Realm, you explode (fire damage). Timed with a Sacrifice chain this could yield a ton of monster deaths.

    Summoner Variation:
    The 6th skill used to be taken up by Summon Zombie Dogs. Coupled with Final Gift this would feed your Gruesome Feast combo by leaving health potions whenever you use Sacrifice. It's not a bad way to go. But since i'm really focusing on burst damage and exploding, without the use of Summon Zombie Dogs, I decided to go with

    Sacrifice Variation:
    Big Bad VooDoo with Boogie Man. This has a chance of leaving behind a Zombie Dog for each enemy killed, making Summon Zombie Dogs completely unnecessary and giving the WD a little bit of Utility for those parties that are reliant on attack speed and movement speed. I would most likely drop this first (before Soul Harvest) to get the maximum effectiveness out of it.

    http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/witch-doctor#WZdVUQ!aYW!ccYZbc
    "Typically you'll hit a pack of mobs, use Soul Harvest followed by Grasp of the Dead , and then Sacrifice to start taking down mobs in packs. As zombie dogs spawn you can sacrfice them again, and as long as enemies and dogs are dying, more will spawn."

    Feel free to share your thoughts as well
    (also Jon if you could update the build on the vote page that'd be swell. Thanks!)
  9. Raspbuten Member

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    Hmm... for some reason the skill builder icons arent matching up with the actual skills that they represent...so it's a little tricky to get this right.

    Also I'm debating a change, swapping out Big Bad Voodoo with Mass Confusion. With the Devolution rune this allows for zombie dogs to spawn half of the time if a confused monster dies. This needs further testing, to see if you can kill a confused monster or if they become like "pets" where they become members of your party.

    This should be the right skill build:
    http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/witch-doctor#cZRSUj!bec!bcYZbc
  10. Jon Moderator

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    Apparently they rolled back the update they pushed to the website in the past few days. I'd say that's why skill builds are messed up yet again.

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