I've been quite hesitant to
write up my thoughts about my
Inferno Monk build until I have personally tested it in inferno (past
act 2 specifically) to see how it would work.
Mainly due to the large amounts of similar guides from
people who suggest builds for inferno that contain one
of the two following flaws :
(1) Not being fully tested in harder acts of inferno.
(2) Being highly gear dependent builds that require
certain stats to work.
After enough playing to get a good feel for it with all
the possible champion packs and such, I can gladly say
that this build will enable you to survive and kill
things SLOWLY but SURELY in inferno, in order to gear up
enough to the point of trying out more varied/fun
This is mainly a build focusing on extreme survival for
farming inferno purposes until you can get your stats
past a comfortable point to try out less defensive
Link to the build here
choices and Rune decisions explanation :
Skill Choice :
Rune Choice : Concussion
(1) Out of all your spirit generators, Crippling wave is
probably the most well rounded one, with good AOE damage
spread (compared to deadly reach).
(2) Despite lower weapon damage percentage than WoHF ,
it still does more overall damage, mainly due to the AOE
(3) Slowing down enemies is more valuable for hit and
run during fights than the benefits granted by other
(4) Concussion rune adds 20% damage mitigation from
(5) 20% slower attack speed on enemies also means less
damage taken per second.
Choice : Sweeping Wind
Rune Choice : Bladestorm
(1) Out of all your spirit spenders, Sweeping wind is
the most well rounded, with the best overall Damage
output over longer fights than any other spirit spenders
(Due to AOE damage, almost permanent uptime if you keep
the 3 stacks up without needing to spend extra spirit
for more damage, and no cooldown).
(2) it has the highest spirit cost of any possible
spirit spender (75 spirit) , which enables it to
synergize well with the transcendence passive (which we
are using in this build), therefore you can use it as an
emergency heal (4650 Life) if both serenity and breath
of heaven are on cooldown.
(3) Bladestorm rune is without doubt the most useful
rune for sweeping wind, increasing the damage
Choice : Breath of Heaven
Rune Choice : Circle of
(1) A very powerful healing spell, at a relatively low
spirit cost and moderate cooldown, a definite must have
(2) Circle of Life rune increases the healing to 8063 -
9675 life , which is even better
(3) Transcendence passive synergy adds 1550 extra life
when it's used , making the total healing amount
received 9613 - 11225 life
Choice : Serenity
Rune Choice : Peaceful
(1) A shield that makes you invulnerable for 3 seconds,
as well as immunity to all control impairing effects,
again a skill that is a must for survival.
(2) Peaceful Repose rune allows it to also function as a
secondary heal for 6202 - 7752 life.
(3) Transcendence passive synergy adds 620 extra life
when it's used , making the total healing amount
received 6822 - 8372 life.
Choice : Blinding Flash
Rune Choice : Searing Light
(1) chances for enemies to miss translate directly into
extra dodge for your character, more survivability.
(2) Searing Light rune makes this even more valuable by
making the chance for elite enemies to miss attacks on
you increase to 60%
Choice : Mantra of Evasion
Rune Choice : Backlash
(1) Since monk is overall an avoidance tank, not a
vitality tank like the barb, therefore mantra of evasion
is a more powerful choice by amplifying his avoidance
(2) Backlash rune selection was mainly due to this build
being very highly defensive, and the only source of
damage coming from crippling wave and sweeping wind,
therefore it would be useful to add a little extra
damage through a defensive ability like the mantra,
Also since you will be dodging attacks for a good
majority of the time, this would mean the 35% weapon
damage AOE is a semi-passive ability, that stacks with
sweeping wind (making the total passive aoe damage
around you reach a total of 95% weapon damage most of
(3) spamming the mantra whenever it's on cooldown adds
an extra dodge chance (more survivability) which in turn
also makes sure the backlash rune proc uptime is maximum
(more AOE damage), while having the relatively medium
cost of 50 spirit ensures it's also useful as a
semi-heal through Transcendence passive (3100 Life)
Passive Skill Choices explanation :
Skill : Resolve
(1) reducing incoming damage through your own attacks by
25% is a huge damage reduction amount.
(2) synergizes well with concussion rune for crippling
wave (they stack multiplicative).
Skill : Seize the initiative
(1) converting your main attribute for damage into a
survival stat is a win-win strategy, stacking high
dexterity to do more damage will automatically ensure
you have more damage reduction without investing in any
(2) High dexterity investment will also increase your
dodge chance, which will increase your survival as well
as your AOE damage from Backlash rune for Mantra of
(3) High attack speeds from high dexterity stacking will
translate to more spirit generation, which will
translate into more cooldown usage, and therefore more
heals overall through Transcendence passive.
Skill : Transcendence
(1) utilizing any spirit spending ability into providing
additional heals is definitely the most useful passive
ability for a monk.
(2) Impressive synergy with almost all of the skills
chosen in this build.
and further thoughts regarding the build :
(1) Focus on stacking Dexterity and Vitality as your two
main stats, as well as weapon damage (Duh!).
(2) Focus on stacking + all resists as your secondary
(3) For more early survival, use a good high damage 1h
weapon with a shield, don't use a Daibo or dual wield
early on in inferno, the extra armor from a shield is
worth the trade-off in damage until you have better
(4) Tackle mobs slowly but steadily, use your cooldowns
to effectively heal whenever you need, even by using an
ability like the mantra or sweeping wind if your main
healing spells are on cooldown.
(5) Try to maximize your dodge against bosses by using
blinding flash + mantra consecutively as you stand to
hit them, followed by serenity to give you a further 3
seconds where you can stand and damage without getting
Bear in mind that this is not a late
game build, but rather an inferno starting/farming
survival build that enables you to effectively seek out
Also, studying professional hardcore strategy guides for
Diablo 3 would greatly help your chance of living.
Diablo 3 Gold Secrets By Peng Joon provides these guides and more.