Diablo 3: Gave Monster Power 8 A Try

Using the gear I purchased recently for my barbarian, I decided to re-do a few talents and passives and bump up the Monster Power a little more. I believe I can get up to 200k and have around 500 all resistances. According to one chat, supposedly these stats would be reasonable enough to handle some of the higher Monster Powers. Monster Power 6 definitely was too easy and I shredded mobs up without any issues. Monster Power 7 started to be closer to feeling like a challenge but I decided to go full stream at 8.

So 8 was definitely doable but I’m guessing only for a few areas. I had quite a bit of issues generating rage and played around with passives to find a good spot. No matter what I found myself rage starved most of the time and ended up being frustrated the few times I died from lacking rage to continue using whirlwind. I’m guessing that part of the problem is that I employed a Skorn (two hander) rather than dual wielding. That led to slower attacks and caused my barbarian to not be able to generate enough fury when a group of mobs ganged up on him.

Right now, I’m a bit low on gold so I decided to hold off replacing the Skorn with a decent Echoing Fury and main weapon. Instead, I toned down the monster power back to 6 and use more defensive gear as well as the Bul-Kathos Mighty Weapons. With lower DPS but higher resistances, I find Monster Power 6 to be a good sweet spot. My main issue in general is just being able to generate rage consistently. I find that dual wielding Bul-Kathos along with my Immortal Kings set gear allows me to keep up enough rage to continue using whirlwind without much issue.

I’m also guessing that not having enough gear with Attack Speed might be hindering me. From what I’ve seen most people go with a certain setup that allows them to have high attack speed and critical hit, which are the elements that help proc tons of critical hits that allow for sufficient rage generation and maintaining Wrath of the Berserker. Unfortunately, my setup won’t allow Wrath of the Berserker to be kept up indefinitely so I have to use that ability judiciously.

One thing that I do like about the higher monster powers is seeing all the rare drops. Although I was able to find tons of rares on my Demon Hunter and Witch Doctor, those were primarily from elites and rare mobs. With the bonus item chance increase at each monster power, you’ll definitely be seeing more loot. The quality is still questionable and most of the money I make is from level reduced gear or just outright selling the rares.

Most of my runs are kept fairly short, just doing Act 1 Weeping Hollow and Fields of Misery runs with Festering Woods tossed in when I want to get Nephlam Stacks. I tend to veer towards getting 5 stacks of Nephlam Valor just for the bonuses. Usually, it doesn’t take that much more effort and the rewards sometimes are decent.Mainly, I started playing off and on again since I was growing sick of Throne of Thunder runs (or rather failures). It’s nice to have a small change and do something slightly different and give myself a break.

Diablo 3: Turn Up that Monster Power Notch

I started to find my Act 1 runs on my Barbarian to be progressively getting easier. I recently hit Paragon Level 24 and wanted to see if I could push that Monster Power level a little higher. So I’m now at Monster Power 6 and feel that it’s quite an interesting challenge. People say that what you do is avoid the elites and champion packs and aim straight for the normal mobs. Ironically, as I killed a bunch of normal mobs, a nice Vile Wards dropped that I sold for 500k.

I was able to handle the elite and champion packs but it did take a little more effort. The idea is that the higher you shoot for Monster Power, the higher the likelihood of a drop will occur. But you want to farm efficiently and the way you handle that is avoid the elite and champion packs. Sure, you miss out on the Nephlam Valor, but by farming at higher Monster Powers, you can do more runs.

Since I’m starting to feel burn out from World of Warcraft, I might try Diablo 3 again and see how much I can get from running higher monster powers. Mostly, I’m focusing on Act 1 doing just the Fields of Misery and Weeping Hollow. Those areas are great for a barbarian as they’re jam packed with easy mobs that can be killed without any grievance.

I really wish that I can find better gear for my barbarian though. Although I did purchase some decent items, I had issues when it came to fury generation and seeing my resistances significantly lowered. While my current DPS isn’t as good, it’s my rage and resistances that make me prefer my current gear over the other items.

Diablo 3: Nice MP5 Farming Route for Barbarians (Act 1)

I managed to upgrade my barbarian slightly recently, which is allowing me to handle Monster Power 5 Act 1 just fine. Stat-wise, he has (unbuffed) 38.8k health, 640 all resistances, 6.5k armor, 1.1k life on hit and is around 113k DPS. I use a Scoundrel as my companion for the increased critical hit chance. Unless I get supremely unlucky or play sloppy, I have very little problems staying alive for the most part.

Currently, the way I farm Act 1 involves areas which is well documented as mob dense zones. I start by hitting the Cemetery of the Foresaken and backtracking to The Weeping Hollow. Depending on your luck (or lack thereof), you can find anywhere between 2-4 elite packs and possibly a treasure goblin. It’s up to you whether or not you want to handle a treasure goblin prior to having 5 Nephlam Valor stacks but more than likely he’ll teleport out unless you have the damage output.

Once I clear most of The Weeping Hollow, I port over to the Festering Woods. Here, you can find anywhere between 3-5 more elites and/or an event as well as an occasional treasure goblin. If you can you should probably hit the two underground zones to get the guaranteed elite. By the time you finish, you should have your 5 Nephlam Valor stacks.

For the next part, head over to the Fields of Misery. With your 5 Nephlam Valor stacks you can hunt down the Keywarden. I tend to try and clear most of the zone. The dungeons are optional as I find the meat of the area to be above ground.

From here, you have the option to restart the game or do a Whimseyshire run. Why Whimseyshire? Outside of having several elites and champion packs, you also have the slim chance of finding a unique that may drop a Spectrum or Horaldric Hamburger. If those are well rolled, you can make a good hundred million gold or more depending on the damage output.

Regardless, this farming route focuses on a few goals. One is to kill numerous white mobs at a reasonable Monster Power and thereby receiving some decent experience for your paragon leveling. Next, you want to get your Nephlam Valor stacks to 5 for both Key farming, better drops and the experience boost. Next, as stated just before, you can farm for your Key (I’ve been lucky each time and it dropped every single time). Finally, beyond killing elites in the hope of finding legendaries, doing these runs on the higher Monster Power will, indeed, help boost the rate of finding legendaries not just on elites and champion packs, but on white mobs as well. On one run, I found three legendaries as well as the key.

Also, for a barbarian most of these mobs are pretty safe and easy. The biggest difficulties I’ve encountered thus far have been getting an unlucky mix of affixes on elites and champion packs that wiped me out. But the white mobs themselves are not dangerous for the most part and only if you play sloppy will you see any danger. I’m considering bumping up the Monster Power to see how I can fare at the next level. But so far this route has proven quite positive and yielding a few decent legendaries as well as boosting my experience fairly quickly.

Diablo 3: Auction House is Back, Message from Director and More Patch 1.0.8 Stuff

Tonight, the Auction House was reinstated following a message from the director of product over at Blizzard that detailed the issues/fallout of the gold duping. Essentially, he summarized the actual bug and how Blizzard proceeded to correct the issue, their decision not to rollback the patch and even some stats on the percentage of people exploiting the bug. Essentially, considering the general population for Diablo 3, the actual number of people dealing with the situation was quite small, since in order to perform the exploit, you pretty much needed a huge amount of gold. Naturally, the vast majority of us would even see the exploit so it pretty much alludes to a key problem in the game.

What it seems like is that the exploit was being done through high end gamers. Obviously, some streamers, who are high end with tremendous amounts of gold, did bring up the bug during their live streams. But it feels as though the ones who were dealing with this probably are the same people who flip on the auction house and possibly even use bots to achieve their wealth. In short, most of the people, imo, are unethical (after all, these people were the ones exploiting the bug for even more gain)

One of the unfortunate consequences resulting from the banning of accounts and resetting of the Auction House was that a lot of items ended up becoming account bound. Certainly, there are players who applaud this decision, but the net effect is that most of the items probably were high end items. When I checked the Auction House earlier, it felt somewhat empty compared to normal. So it’s possible that the slightly more affordable items ended up having their prices raised to meet the new demand. Unfortunately, the mediocre items probably stayed the same.

Beyond that, I started testing different Monster Power levels and checking out a few Act 1 areas in trying to find a good zone to farm. Right now, the popular zone has become the Weeping Hollow since most monsters there aren’t as difficult compared to other dense zones. I found that my Witch Doctor when he’s suited up can handle Monster Power 4 in that area just fine, but moving past that point is pretty rough.

However, since I was a bit bored, I ended up playing my Wizard a bit, changing her spec back to Critical Mass and picking up the Chantodo’s Will and Force combo, while handing my Witch Doctor’s gear to her on loan. The neat thing about moving back to Critical Mass with this gear is that I’m able to handle Monster Power 5 fairly well. I did die once or twice but I could start seeing the Critical Mass build shine. I gave a few of the Act 1 areas a go using this build. Right now, it feels that repeating the Weeping Hollow might be the best spot for farming, at least for Paragon Leveling. I might try pumping up the Monster Power a few more times to see where the sweet spot for farming is. But the nice thing about doing this is the large amount of experience.

I might eventually go back to Archon just because I find the Critical Mass build to be pretty intense and harsh on my fingers and wrists. Also, it’s just REALLY slow to farm these areas. But I’m just seeing how much I can handle. It would be nice to try Monster Power 10 down the road since the rest of my guys really can’t handle that level. But I don’t anticipate it to be all that fun considering how it’s really harsh on my wrist.

Diablo 3: Near 180k DPS Witch Doctor Acid Cloud Destroying Inferno MP2

I made a 10 million gold purchase to replace my old helmet on my witch doctor, which boosted his DPS to near 180k unbuffed (slightly less according to diabloprogress.com), hitting around 220k buffed. The results? Monster Power 2 Inferno is like a knife to melted butter. I probably can take down rares and champion packs within roughly 20 seconds.

I might give Monster Power 3 another try but I feel that the exponential growth of rare and champion pack life might slow my farming down a bit, since it’s recommended that efficient clears should be within 10-20 seconds per rare/champion pack mob. White mobs go down reasonably well at 160k unbuffed DPS but I’ve found myself kiting things around for quite a bit at Monster Power 3, which slows my overall farming progress down quite a bit.

If anything, I think if I can boost my DPS by another 30k unbuffed, Monster Power 3 should be at or near the ease of Monster Power 2 right now. However, getting over the next 30k DPS hump is pretty hard without some major investment. Most of what I can do is do incremental increases for key stats on gear. This is where the game really slows down since you end up focusing on single pieces of gear for a large amount of gold or real money. However, getting the gold for that kind of investment is pretty hard without incredible luck and spending real money beyond $3-5 just isn’t worth it (unless you’ve got an incredible amount of spare capital lying around). So in my case it might be a while before I get a reasonable upgrade.

One thing I will say is that the witch doctor has slowly become one of my favorite classes. It’s not popular nor as potentially efficient as a barbarian but I find that the class is pretty fun, can be flexible on the skills and gearing is not horribly expensive (unless you do something like a Zombie Dog/Sacrifice build). I’m not saying getting to 170k unbuffed DPS is going to be completely cheap, but you can gear up pretty quickly and be effective. Then as you progress in gaining paragon levels and accumulating gold, the upgrades are plentiful and can get you pretty close to where you need to be to clear Inferno and Monster Power 2 effectively.

I do think I can push my guy another 30k but I don’t think at this point it’s worth sacrificing certain elements like survivability and my 20 yard pick up radius off hand. But outside of uber bosses, there might be little point in making those upgrades just yet.

Diablo 3: Re-Leveling A New Demon Hunter and Witch Doctor Fun

My friend recently joined on Diablo 3 so I decided to give the Demon Hunter another try (meaning re-level a new demon hunter….hey there’s an achievement for that!). This time around with my gold resources and various hand-me-down pieces of gear, it’s a breeze. One unusual thing I decided to try was using a Spectrum as a Demon Hunter.

You might think, “Hey, I didn’t know Demon Hunters can go melee!” Technically, they can’t. In fact, using a melee weapon prevents Demon Hunters from using certain attacks. However, they are capable of using Grenades, Impale and Chkram. Now, most of these aren’t particularly ideal for a Demon Hunter, but the damage a Demon Hunter can output with a well rolled Spectrum or Horadric Hamburger far outweighs any inconveniences.

Unfortunately, you cannot dual wield a Spectrum and Horadric Hamburger at once. However, you can use a shield (strangely enough) so I opted for a slightly defensive setup considering that I’m in melee range most of the time. Quite honestly, I love the play style. I got tired of Hungering Arrow and Elemental Arrow. I still use near similar defensives as my main Demon Hunter, but I might change that out too just to try out a different playstyle as I level.

Eventually, I want to try the strafe build or the stunlock grenade build. I’ve seen a few other interesting builds like the bola shot build for Monster Power 10. In general, I wanted to have separately geared up Demon Hunters. I might even try doing the self-found gear route just as a challenge (that includes finding drops on my other toons).

With my witch doctor, I did some pretty nice upgrades recently, pumping my unbuffed DPS to over 160k. Right now in Monster Power 2, I practically one shot all white mobs and elites are not much of a challenge. I’m trying to upgrade my ring and helmet to see if I can obtain a little more DPS. I did manage to try Monster Power 3. While white mobs went down reasonably, elites and champion mobs posed a lot more of a challenge. The worst situation would be finding multiple champion and elites as I kited one group to the next. While I managed to survive, it wasn’t easy without burning cooldowns and potions quite often and doing very long kite paths.

I feel that if I add another 20-30k DPS, Monster Power 3 will be pretty easy. The main thing outside of kiting is just having enough DPS to unload to get those mobs down. You’re forced to spam your nukes against mobs pretty hard. Even if you clear out all but one of the mobs, you’ll still be spending a bit of time trying to finish off that last mob.

Some people say that the way to go as you hit higher Monster Powers as a witch doctor is to move to a spec like Zombie Bears or Zombie Dogs. Zombie Dogs are not really an option because of the cost. Also, I heard that it’s not as effective as people may say. I haven’t tried Zombie Bears, but I’ve read that it too has issues because of the melee-like proximity you’re forced into with this spec.

Truthfully, I really don’t want to sacrifice (heh heh) his Thing-of-the-Deep item because I really love the pick up radius on it. I know top Witch Doctors use the Uhkapian Serpent but the convenience of the pick up radius vs the increased damage for me does not seem worth the cost at the moment.

At any rate, my Witch Doctor feels more like my main at this point than my Demon Hunter. It’s a real fun class and it has pretty smooth game play without the incredible amount of micro management that I find with other classes. I hope that I can re-gear my Wizard for the Archon spec just to have another fun farmer.


Diablo 3: Theory of Monster Power, Efficiency and Farming

I decided to run my Demon Hunter this morning on Monster Power 0 just to see how much experience, drops and time it would take. Although I managed to drop things fairly fast, it still felt quite slow. Also, the experience and drops felt really watered down. So later, I switched back to Monster Power 2 and saw my everything rise back up without much loss in time. Not to mention that I found two Bul-Kathos’ Solemn Vows, one which rolled decent DPS that I have up on AH right now.

That experience makes me believe that at least for my Demon Hunter farming on less than Monster Power 2 really isn’t efficient. I know there are people who say that if you can’t kill an elite in less than 20 seconds (or just one shot them) then you’re farming on too high of a Monster Power. Quite honestly, I find all these theories on efficiency to only apply towards races. Considering that all the top paragon levelers have been reached, then efficiency to me really is a non-issue.

Quite honestly, if you only take advice from those people who just farm the same spots over and over, you might find yourself frustrated. I think the people who just do Alkaizer Runs or Vault of the Assassin really don’t get that much to be honest. Again, all this goes back to setting goals for yourself. Alkaizer Runs were popularized on the basis of paragon leveling. After that others such as Raoha have tried to create other solutions for efficient paragon leveling. Remember, those are just guides but not necessarily the best methods for the individual.

My style varies depending on my class, gear and what I want to accomplish. My Demon Hunter is, unfortunately, my best all-around class but I have little desire re-running Alkaizer Runs all the time. I feel that Alkaizer Runs might be okay for experience, but they get extremely boring after a short period. Instead, I think Act 3 near complete runs might be better overall. The nice thing about progressing like that is you feel like you’re moving forward rather than doing things for strict efficiency. It feels less boring and gives you something to look forward to rather than just the same five areas over and over.

But here’s the other thing that I’m beginning to believe. Doing Alkaizer Runs for drops also hinders your drops. The problem is that by doing Alkaizer Runs you’re essentially knocking off the 5 stacks of Nephlam Valor each time you reset. So that you’re missing out on a lot of good items with the automatic rare that you get per elite/champion pack.

Quite often, I’ll read on forums how people complain about not finding legendaries despite being of high paragon level. But the bigger question to me is what is their farming strategy? If they’re doing Alkaizer Runs or restricting everything to Vault of the Assassin, they’re probably missing out on a lot of guaranteed items. I watched some people on stream and noticed that they ended up skipping white mobs. However, for myself, I find many legendaries on white mobs as well. So just restricting oneself to certain types of mobs and quick runs makes me believe that people could be missing out.

Another thing I feel is wrong is how people only pick up certain types of items. I know there are a few popular youtubers/streamers who dictate that only certain types of items are worth picking up. They believe that you lose efficiency in avoiding the other items. However, let’s say you lack gold or have poor gear and need to build up your war chest. Those rares and the gold drops can add up fairly quickly. And they’re guaranteed. Right now, I probably average around at least 500k/run doing near complete Act 3 clears. I rarely find anything worth putting up on the Auction House and most of the items I end up selling for between 10-20k max. However, on an Monster Power 2 near complete Act 3 run on my Demon Hunter, I can load up around 5-6 bags of rares that might garner me around 30-50k/trip.

The thing is that picking up those items and gold takes a few extra seconds but that’s all guaranteed money. For myself since it takes roughly 2 1/2 Act 3 near complete runs on Monster Power 2 to gain paragon levels for my Demon Hunter, I can compliment my leveling with farming and estimate my incoming gold. That’s not that bad.

Some things I do consider as I farm Act 3 Inferno on varying Monster Powers is my gear/stats on my characters. I did try Monster Power 1 on my Tempest Rush monk but he had quite a bit of trouble due to low DPS, resistances, life-on-hit and life (EHP). On the other hand, my barbarian is doing fine because of those higher stats. I might give my witch doctor a try in terms of higher Monster Power as well just for fun to see how he does considering he’s closer to my Demon Hunter with regards to overall stats and DPS. Right now, I feel that if you have around 20k health, 400-500 resistances, 400 life-on-hit and between 70-80k DPS, you can handle Inferno normal mode just fine. My Demon Hunter is at 140k DPS (buffed) with 460 resistances, but 45k life and over 460 life-on-hit and has no issues doing Monster Power 2 (except when I’m playing stupid or have some bad luck).

Either way, I think it’s important to move beyond just efficiency and see how much you really get out of your runs before choosing a method. Set your goals up and figure out what you want to accomplish in your runs. Everything shouldn’t just boil down to what popular people are doing. Experiment a little and discover on your own what works best for you.

Diablo 3: More Paragon Leveling for Demon Hunter, Barbarian and Legendary Madness!

With my barbarian completed Inferno, I felt it was time to start paragon leveling him in a more serious manner. He finished at 6 so I decided to see how far I could push him. Essentially, I focused on doing Alkaizer Runs using Monster Power 1. I ended up hitting 10 by the end and switched to my Demon Hunter for a bit.

My general experience with the Alkaizer Runs is that, yes, they are fast and focused but at the same time somewhat boring. I can see how for melee farming classes like Tempest Rush monks and Whirlwind Barbarians how Alkaizer Runs probably are best suited at the moment for experience. However, it can get tiresome quickly. I think re-building the nephlam valor stacks are somewhat of a pain, which kinda demotivates me each time I go through.

Also, I tried experimenting a little by changing a few skills around my barbarian. In one case, I ended up becoming too vulnerable and died quickly. In the current setup, I’m having issues with keeping Wrath of the Berserker up. I’ve seen several ways to handle it but perhaps my gear and skill set up might be causing some issues. I think one major factor is that my critical hit chance is a bit low due to my rings and amulet pieces lacking good critical hit, thus making my fury generation low and not fueling Wrath of the Berserker appropriately. Unfortunately, the trifecta rings that everyone loves tend to be horrendously overpriced and I just don’t have the funds at the moment to make those kinds of purchases.

I figured that since I’m still not as gear optimized as I could be at the moment (without going crazy on some budget), I decided to continue focusing on my demon hunter. I managed to hit paragon level 43 on my demon hunter and I’m finding several things at the moment. First, monster power 2 is a breeze. The only thing that threatens my demon hunter at all in Act 3 are those bull creatures in the cave. Other than that, I’d have to do something incredibly stupid or be surrounded by a huge group of enemies and trapped by prisons or wallers to die.

Another thing is that it’s taking me around 3 runs to get enough experience for each level. Around the 40 level mark, I would say things drastically started to slow down. I don’t use Alkaizer Runs on my demon hunter. Instead, I do most of Act 3 (minus the bosses) and probably two zones.  It does take me longer since I’m essentially hitting some of the lesser populated zones in Act 3 but I find this route to be less boring than the standard Alkaizer run. At the same time, I’m probably not getting as much experience as an optimized Alkaizer Run but I suspect that might be due to the fact that my demon hunter isn’t really a great farming class compared to whirlwind barbarians and tempest rush monks. I did switch one of my discipline skills to use Vault with Trail of Cinders, but that hasn’t really improved my overall speed.

Despite the less efficient route, I will say that I prefer this method to the standard Alkaizer Run, at least on my demon hunter. The thing is that I feel that each time you reset and lose your 5 nephlam valor stacks, you really end up missing out on a lot of possible items. I haven’t completely verified my results, but it feels as though I can fill up my bags with rares around 5-6 times per run. Unlike other people who might only pick up the top end rares, I pick up all those along with tomes and gems. I mentioned before that in the long run, I want to make sure I have enough materials for crafting. With rares, I end up selling most off to the vender. The thing is that rares sell for a good 2k per. Without using the Auction House, I can make roughly 500k/run at the moment just picking up the larger chunks of gold and selling all my rares. And this is guaranteed gold as opposed to hoping that something may eventually sell on the Auction House for the price I want.

The other thing is that I’ll find some decent rares that are not exactly the high end stuff most people are willing to pick up. Sometimes, I’ll find some awesome level reduced armor or weapon that can sell for a nice 100k+. Other times, I’ll find an item that has reasonable stats that can sell for a good 20-25k. That might not be as awesome as those 100+ million gold auctions. However, when you consider that the vast majority of drops end up sucking, you really have to take what you can get.

Lastly, I’ve been getting roughly 3 legendaries per run now. That’s not bad. Admittedly, most of the legendaries I’ve found thus far have been pretty bad. I end up decomposing them for future materials. Still though, that’s a decent drop rate that has become somewhat consistent. Hopefully, as I continue to gain higher paragon levels, I’ll see even more legendaries drop per run.

Overall, I like the way I have my runs set up on my Demon Hunter. Although I’m not gaining XP as efficiently as pure Alkaizer Runs, I am enjoying the benefits of finding decent loot, getting legendaries and making consistent gold. I still am tempted to pump up the monster power by one more just to see how well I can handle things. I think if I can increase my DPS by another 20-30k, the higher monster powers will be quite nice for farming.

Diablo 3: Finished Inferno on Barbarian, Paragon Leveling on Demon Hunter

Out of boredom, I decided to just power straight through on normal mode Inferno with my barbarian. The other day I finished Act 1 on my Barbarian for the first time so after easily screaming through Act 2, I ended up just zooming through the rest of the game. I figured that with the 5 stacks of Nephlam Valor carrying through each act, it made sense just to retain them between acts in the hope of getting a good drop here and there sooner rather than later.

For the most part, everything was dead easy. Only Act 4 gave me a slight issue where the unique that has the plans for crafting machines would nuke me a few times. Beyond that, my barbarian held remarkably well in normal mode Inferno to the point where I felt like he was overpowered even. I made a few changes to my barbarian based on Moldran’s barbarian. While I do not have the same gear as he does, I ended up switching some talents and passives around because I found myself rage starved too often. I still have some issues with rage, but not to the degree as before.

Right now, I’m focused on doing a whirlwind barbarian build. I use the Bul-Kathos legendaries for some added fury (not much), one having life on hit. I believe my life on hit at the moment is 1.2k and he has lifesteal from his belt. When I tackle reflect damage mobs, I have no issues whatsoever. It’s really cool since my survivability is just awesome. When I modified my barbarian, I sacrificed once passive (the one for armor) for the rage generation passive. I thought that his survivability would drop. Quite the contrary. Probably, I’m doing far better now than before.

My next challenge would be to try higher monster powers to see where a sweet spot is for farming. Initially, I want to focus on gaining paragon levels since most of the drops are crap as of now. Usually, I’ve been picking up gems, rares and tomes on top of legendaries to build my barbarian’s personal stash up. Some people don’t feel it’s efficient but again the goal is more long term since I eventually want to make enough money and have the mats to craft better gems and the Archon recipes.

Besides playing my barbarian, I also have been playing my Demon Hunter. My Demon Hunter is in a weird state since he’s pretty much my best character with decent gear/DPS and sits at paragon level 42. However, he’s probably nowhere near efficient as a monk or barbarian. I ended up getting the vault talent once again just to move around faster but I don’t feel that my farming has improved much. Sadly though, all the good stuff comes from his runs.

Despite all that, my Demon Hunter is slowing down considerably when it comes to Paragon Leveling. I’m back at Monster Power 2 without any change of gear just to try and grab better drops and experience. Right now, it doesn’t feel all that challenging so I’m tempted to pump it up one more level.

Down the road, I would like to return to my other characters. I would’ve put more effort into my monk if it wasn’t for his squishiness as a Tempest Rush build. However, I would love to some day give the Archon Wizard build a try. I did use a lower level Archon style build at one point and I found it loads of fun. But in moving to Inferno, I needed something with a little better survivability and for cheap. Hence, the Critical Mass build choice. The problem with my Wizard as a Critical Mass build is that her gear is pretty bad. She drastically needs better gear and I want to devote either gold to obtaining that gear or finding it on my own.

Then lastly there’s my witch doctor. I’ve seen the Zombie Dogs and Zombie Bears builds but I don’t quite have the gear for either. Instead, I use a pretty generic build that allows him to do decently. But his DPS isn’t great and I think he’ll have problems at higher monster powers. I would love to eventually get him better gear, but it’ll take a while and probably quite a bit of money before I can do that.

If I have time, I would eventually like to have the opposite gender for each of these classes. But some things I would do differently are getting a Hellfire Ring as well as the other legendary ring that provides the XP bonus. Also, I want to have them dedicated for other builds. For those other builds, I want to find all the gear on my own rather than depend on the Auction House. That possibly will take quite a while and require me to eventually focus on one main farming class (probably barbarian or my demon hunter). But I think it’ll be a nice long term challenge.

Once again you might be asking, “What happened to Path of Exile?” I recently learned that one of my friends acquired a new PC. I’m hoping to convince her to try out the game. When she does, I’ll probably re-roll my ranger. I found out that I probably messed up her build already so it’ll probably be better for me just to re-roll her. In the meantime, I wanted to focus more on gear acquisition and paragon leveling in Diablo 3.

Diablo 3: Pushing My Barbarian

It’s fun playing a Demon Hunter but I want a better farming class. The Tempest Rush Monk can be fun but I’ve been having problems on even MP1 in terms of staying alive. Pretty much with the monk the main issues are life and resistance. My current build for my monk and his gear essentially makes him a glass cannon against certain elites.

So I decided to switch back to my barbarian, whom I haven’t played in quite a while. I grabbed a few pieces of gear and actually got lucky when my Demon Hunter, ironically, scored some relevant Lacuni Bracers. With that I’m reasonably geared.

Survivability thus far has been decent. Pretty much I’m one shotting everything. The biggest issue is spending rage. With everything going down so fast, it’s really hard to keep up things like Wrath of the Berserker. I think once I clean Act 3, I might try pumping up the Monster Power little by little to see where that sweet spot is.

More than likely, I’ll just do Alkaizer Runs once I finish Act 3. Even with the upcoming buffs to mob density in non-Act 3 areas, I think that the Alkaizer Run still probably will end up being one of the better spots. I’ve seen the increase in mob density on the PTR as demonstrated by some streamers and youtube videos and it honestly doesn’t feel as though it’s been buffed up that much.

Part of the reason to continue doing Alkaizer Runs though is to combine paragon leveling with finding decent drops. Since my barbarian is the lowest of my food chain in terms of paragon levels, it will take some time before I’ll see anything come out of these runs. It’s probably better for me to continue using my Demon Hunter, but I just want to switch it up a bit.

Oh what about Path of Exile you might say. Well, why not just do both? I mean, when Diablo 3 goes down for maintenance, I can switch to Path of Exile and vice versa. I have fun with both games and I don’t think it’s great just playing one game exclusively. Anything can burn you out if you over do it so switching things around helps keep everything fresh.