This is another alternative guide to playing the Monk in
Inferno. Also if you haven't yet, you can check out my
Monk Inferno Guide for more great ways to play the
Monk in Inferno Difficulty.
FIRST OFF CLICK FOR THE BUILD
- How to bind 2 spirit generators and 3 defensive
skills? Press Escape, click Options, click the
Gameplay tab, turn on Elective Mode. You're now able
to bind any ability to any button.
- Are you sure about the Mantra choice? Since they nerfed Mantra of Healing so much, Mantra of Evasion is
just overall better.
"But doesn't dodge have diminishing returns?"
Short answer: no, but different sources multiply rather
than add up.
Long answer: see links in the end.
If you're just farming easy content, Mantra of
Conviction/Overawe is still the best choice for that.
MoE/Backlash is also a really good balance of offense
and defense, give it a try.
And lastly, if you're just beginning Inferno as a Monk,
remember to use MoC/Overawe for Butcher. He has a 3
minute enrage timer.
Why Deadly Reach/Foresight right click? The buff from
Foresight lasts 30 seconds. You will have to remember to
refresh it yourself - there is no buff displayed on the
UI for it; there is a little green glow around your
character and the DPS increase does show in your
character window. It's also a ranged spell, which comes
in handy every now and then.
- Why Fists of Thunder/Thunderclap left click? LoH has
different modifiers for attacks, and the
highest one is
for FoT/TC. FoT is also
the fastest attack and spirit generator. Thunderclap is
amazing to chase off ranged mobs and its AoE component
is good. Just learn not to teleport into molten, fire
chains or other nasty things - use Deadly Reach hold
position a lot when you don't have Blind/Serenity
(Thunderclap will still port you while holding).
Do not use other runes for FoT! LoH does proc from AoE
strikes and the Thunderclap lightning's (but not auras or
Sweeping Wind), and since FoT on its own only does AoE
every third hit... you can imagine how much different it
is to play without the rune.
If you still feel like you need extra defense and this
is your last resort - go with Deadly Reach/Keen Eye.
Resolve and Crippling Wave/Concussion together give only
33% less damage received (check links in the end for
proof), and Concussion needs to be applied to work. Keen
Eye is just more EHP and easier to maintain, consider
ranged mobs. Pick up Sweeping Wind in the freed up slot
to compensate the damage loss.
- Why Ascension and not Peaceful Repose for
Serenity? Because our heals don't scale. You will
end up generating just as much health in the extra
second duration with enough LoH and AS. Not to mention the
utility of being immune to everything for one extra
- What about other runes for Blinding Flash? Faith in
the Light increases weapon damage directly. For my
character, for example, it increases my overall DPS by
~61% for those 3 seconds, it's an incredibly strong
burst. Blinded and Confused can be good, but I don't
like the RNG.
- Why not use Transcendence passive? Because
there's simply no place for it, and with enough LoH, the healing
from it becomes irrelevant and negligible. However, if
you do not have proper gear for utilizing One With
Everything (your resistances are roughly equal), you
should use Transcendence.
- What to do if I'm poor and can't afford any LoH at the
moment? Resort to keeping yourself up thanks to
Transcendence and possibly Life per Spirit Spent stat
(only on fists and spirit stone helms). You can actually
get quite a bit of healing out of it. Just as with LoH,
this scales up with Attack Speed - more spirit, more
spam of spirit-based abilities, more life.
If you don't rely on OWE for high resists, you can just
use Transcendence instead of OWE and win. If you do,
however, you should switch your primary strike to
Crippling Wave/Concussion, and use Transcendence instead
Monk Inferno Gear
First things first, play 1h/Shield. DW and 2H are
doable, but for content you are not adequately geared to
farm, you will struggle without the extra defense of a
Most common mistake I see is people not realizing that
no matter how much damage you avoid, mitigate, or how
much damage you deal, you will die without sustain. You
need to have a constant source of HP. The biggest
difference between Act 1 and Act 2 is that in Act 1, the
heals you get from your abilities and/or passives is
enough to sustain, while in Act 2, they are not.
Since Life Steal is incredibly bad in Inferno (it
diminishes in higher difficulties, with only 20% of it
working in Inferno), we look at the other healing stat -
Life on Hit. This is an incredible stat as it procs from
everything and scales with how fast you attack. The best
source of LoH is weapons.
This brings us to Attack Speed. Not only this is a huge
damage increase stat on its own, it also increases our
spirit regen, our LoH healing per time, and how often we
get our finisher moves (e.g. the knockback from Fists of
Thunder - you will 'stunlock' normal mobs past 2.0
attack speed). The slots that can have AS on them are:
weapon, amulet, rings and gloves. 15% is the standard
amount. The more the better, but I recommend breaking at
least 2.0 attacks per second.
Using One With Everything properly is very important.
Tons of items with, say, +all resist and +arcane resist
on them together. With OWE, a single item can net you
over 100 total resistance if you stack the same random
resistance across all of your gear. This is how people
reach insanely high amount of resistance.
Now that all of this is understood, I'll list which
stats you should pay attention to the most for each
slot, which useful stats the slots can have, which
legendaries/set pieces to look out for, and some
DPS, Life on Hit, Attack Speed, Socket, Weapon
Type, Dexterity, Life per Spirit Spent, Vitality
Weapon slot is pretty much the core of this build, as
its the only slot that can carry high amounts of LoH.
Look for a weapon with at least 600, or 300 and a socket
(Star Amethyst gives 300 LoH when put into a weapon).
I've seen 900 LoH on weapons with a socket. You should
get at least 600 LoH even if it will cost you weapon
DPS. Attack speed and LoH together make a perfect
weapon, but those will be expensive - this might be a
slot you will skip AS on just due to cost.
Fists can have Life per Spirit Spent, which is a very
And finally, there's a difference in base attack speed
depending on weapon type. Daggers (1.5) > Swords/Fists
(1.4) > Axes (1.3) > Maces and Spears (1.2).
- Shield: Block Chance, Block Amount, Dexterity,
Resistances, Vitality, Life %, Reduced Damage from
Pay attention to shield stats - block chance and amount
- they make a big difference although it might not seem
so on paper. Damage is blocked after its reduced by
armor and resistance, think about that. It's likely that
attack tables are single roll based, and with us having
50%+ dodge chance, the amount of damage a shield can
reduce on its own is huge with a good block chance and
amount. Picking a shield is like picking a weapon -
block chance and value is the main stat on it, like
damage is on weapons.
Hallowed Barrier is worth checking out because they are cheap)
- Amulet: Attack Speed, Life on Hit, Dexterity,
Resistances, Vitality, Life %, Reduced Damage from
AS is the primary stat to look for here. The reason I
don't highlight LoH is because finding 15% AS together
with 400 LoH or more on a rare quality item is hard.
They exist, just very rare, and people want more for
those than for Blackthorne's Medal, which makes like no
sense at all. Just use anything decent with 15% AS until
you can afford Blackthorne's, or hope you get lucky.
Attack Speed, Life on Hit, Dexterity,
Resistances, Vitality, Life %
Exact same thing as with amulets here, but even worse.
Looking for rares with 15% AS and 300 LoH I've never
seen more than 10 items pop up, with ridiculous prices
of course. Over 400 LoH doesn't seem to exist. There
aren't even legendaries that have both AS and LoH as set
stats on them. Pretty much just get AS here and some
good stats you can get your hands on.
- Gloves: Attack Speed, Dexterity, Resistances, Vitality
This is the only armor slot that commonly has AS.
Otherwise pretty standard. You can get lucky and get all
5 stats on a rare to be beneficial here.
- Helm: Socket, Dexterity, Resistances, Life per Spirit
Spent, Vitality, Life %, Monk Skill Bonus: Fists of
You want a socket to put an Amethyst there for 15% Life.
I think this is pretty important, although completely
viable to ignore it if you won't go below 30k HP or so.
There are some interesting choices here when it comes to
class stats though - you can get a 11% damage modifier
to Fists of Thunder. If it's implemented in the most
basic and logical way, a % of that is around ~7.5 Dex
for us outside of situations where you're kiting with
Deadly Reach [needs confirmation/testing, I assume it
doesn't affect Thunderclap]. Life per Spirit Spent is,
again, a very solid stat.
- Belt: Dexterity, Resistances, Vitality
This would be just a standard armor slot if not for one
item - the legendary String of Ears. One of its
predefined stats is melee strike damage reduction, and
it can go up to a whopping 20%. That's an insane amount
of damage reduction you can get for a single slot and
deserves a separate paragraph about it.
- Chest: Dexterity, Resistances, Vitality, Life %,
Sockets (up to 3), Reduced Damage from
- Boots: Movement Speed, Dexterity, Resistances,
Vitality, Life %
- Bracers: Dexterity, Resistances, Vitality, Reduced
Damage from Melee/Ranged
Dexterity, Resistances, Vitality, Life %
- Pants: Dexterity, Resistances, Vitality, Sockets (up
Some notes about this list:
The order the stats are
listed in can be treated as priority lists. I skipped
sockets on jewelry because if anything, that's a waste
of a potentially better stat roll in my opinion. I
only listed the stats I think are relevant, there are
some stats which I think have a potential like life
regeneration or chance on hit to stun/freeze/fear/knock,
but that's experimental for now. I only listed the
legendaries that have severe advantage over rare items,
but you'll bump into the "just good stats" legendaries
while looking for upgrades anyway.
Also, I got some of my strategy builds from
Diablo 3 Billionaire, there's a small fee for it, but worth
Good luck. This class is very fun once you're attacking
as fast as a ninja should and can take a beating.