NEW – 6/28 – I have a new guide for patch 1.0.3 complete with videos! Check it out at http://www.diablo3artisans.com/demon-hunter-inferno-1-0-3/. I’m going to stop monitoring this thread, so if you have a comment for me, please leave it on the latest post! Cheers!
Hello friends and welcome. I’m Rwen and I’m a Demon Hunter junkie. I love the class, I love the play style, and I love killing demons. I’m here to help you get started in Inferno with my multi-part Demon Hunter Inferno Guide.
“Why Inferno?” Why not? “Isn’t it impossible?” It’s the end game difficulty level, and while it can be retartedly hard at times, it is playable given the right build and the right gear. Inferno is hard, it’s frustrating, it will make you rage and want to break your keyboard, but it is doable. There are many things that make Inferno an absolute bitch and, at times, suck the fun out of the game, but we can mitigate the difficulty a few ways. The only way that you have 100% control over is your build, so lets get started.
The Solo Inferno Build
This is a build setup for solo play in Inferno. This build is based off of my Demon Hunter Hell build, but with a few tweaks that are specific for Inferno.
Without further delay, here it is, the Demon Hunter Solo Inferno build: http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/demon-hunter#fRdSXV!aeY!bcbcZb
At first glance, you’re probably thinking “OMGWTFBBQ? No [insert normal Primary skill here]? What is this Evasive Fire nonsense???” I said it before and I’ll say it again: “Evasion Fire is the next Demon Hunter nerf! Use it before we lose it!” This is your bread and butter, the backbone of everything in this build, and once you try it, YOU WILL LOVE IT.
At second glance, you’re probably thinking “HUH? NO CC?” Yes. No CC. CC in Inferno is broke. It will work on normal mobs, but we don’t care about normal mobs, we want to kill elites and bosses. “DUR IF YOU CAN’T CC HOW YOU BEAT MONSTERS?” By kiting. This build gives you the high mobility unique to the Demon Hunter class. You’re not going to stand in one spot and DPS a boss/elite/normal mob down in Inferno, you have to move, and this build trades some DPS for that movement.
Yes, there are other skill choices that offer higher DPS, but this build is for soloing Inferno. You can’t kill the enemy if YOU CAN’T STAY ALIVE! At this level, the game gets ridiculous. I remember walking into Act 1 fresh from killing Diablo on Hell on my 4th attempt and getting 1 shot by a normal zombie. “WTF!” It was rough. The damage of the mobs is insane. The health pools of the mobs are insane. The speed of the mobs are insane. In Hell, you can get away with being hit 1 or 2 times. In Inferno, the mobs will look at you funny and you’ll die.
This build is about survivability and sustainability, not getting the highest DPS. It’s designed to take advantage of your Nephalem Valor stacks and kill bosses. This build, when played properly, should allow you to beat 99% of the elite combos in Inferno.
Primary – Evasive Fire with Covering Fire
- Survivability is paramount. Demon hunters are one of the “glass cannon” classes of the game, and this becomes even more evident upon reaching Inferno. You will be 1 shot by the zombies in Act 1, the damage output of the normal monsters is just plain ridiculous. Think this is bad? Just wait until you get to monsters that actually move fast. This is why we use Evasive Fire. It keeps us out of melee range for a small Discipline cost (4), which keeps us alive, which keeps us farming mobs. Most elites in Inferno are insanely fast, and this helps you kite and survive.
- Good damage output and great hatred regen. At 125% weapon damage and 4 hatred regen per shot, this is the most efficient damage per hatred regen skill we have.
- Conical hit box of Coving Fire. Covering Fire fires out in about a 45 degree area, allowing you to quickly kill waves of mobs and clear environmental objects.
- No missile travel time. Shots of Evasive Fire hit their target immediately unlike any of the other ranged hatred regen skills (Entangling Shot, Bola Shot, Piercing Arrow) . This allows you to easily hit fast moving mobs that sometimes dodge your attacks, like the insects in Act 2.
- Evasive Fire shoots through the walls created by elite mobs. Most ranged attacks are blocked by these walls, but Evasive Fire goes right through them, allowing you to put more DPS on target. This can also be used on some other walls in the game, and around corners. There are some videos at the bottom that show this.
Secondary – Elemental Arrow with Nether Tentacles
- AOE Damage. OK, most people probably don’t think Nether Tentacles is a real AOE, but it hits every mob it travels through and it can hit them multiple times! Fast moving mobs may take 1-2 hits, while most mobs suffer 2-3 hits, making the actual DPS of this ability far more than 150% weapon damage. The damage output of this skill looks low at only 155%, and for that reason most players won’t touch it, but the ability to clear packs of white mobs with only 3-4 shots of this makes it invaluable.
- Life Steal. This ability restores your life by 3% of your damage per hit. On fast moving mobs, this doesn’t mean much, but on slow moving mobs which get hit 2-3 times per shot, this starts to add up. This isn’t really that important for normal mobs clearing, but becomes amazing for elites and boss fights. This helps you take down those nasty Reflect Damage elites and on boss fights you’ll be glad you have this.
- Can’t I switch this??? You can, out of all the skills in the guide, I would say this the most optional. However, I recommend trying it first. The reason this is here is not to be the top DPS ability, but to do great damage and give you more survivability.
Action Bar Skills
Hunting – Vault with Tumble
- Keep on moving! In Inferno, you have to kite. You stand still and you die. The movement Vault provides is extremely important for kiting, getting away from avoidables, positioning, and escaping nasty elites (think Vortex, Plague, Molten, Mortor, Teleporter, etc.). Vault also allows you to get out of corning situations, allowing you kite into dead ends (useful in the dungeons at end of Act 1 or anywhere with long corridors where you can’t kite in circles.
- You will use this more than once! Tumble is key to beating the super fast moving elite mobs you’ll encounter in Inferno.
- You can use this to escape and reset the fight! Spamming Vault at full Discipline will allow you to out run any mob and get beyond their aggro radius. This alone has saved me multiple deaths and costly repair bills.
Defense – Smoke Screen with Lingering Fog
- This is your Vanish! All my Rogue players know what I’m talking about! This is your only immunity ability and has endless uses in many situations like: breaking elite Jailor’s jails, escaping snares, avoiding incoming damage (think Molten elites and enemies that get into melee range). It can also be used to escape the Butcher’s meathook! This should never happen because you’re using this build have super mobility, but if it does quickly pop Smoke Screen and you will exit the stun and escape unharmed!
- 1.5 seconds is still worth it. This was nerfed hardcore due to massive exploits which are no longer possible, but it’s still long enough to drop aggro, reposition, and get back in the fight.
Hunting – Preparation with Battle Scars
- HEAL MEAH! This is your only heal outside of potions, and in Inferno, you will need it! This has saved me countless times and I can’t imagine soloing without it.
- Endurance for kiting. This keeps you alive and gives you a lot of endurance in long elite and boss fights by making kiting very viable. If you can kite the enemy for 45 seconds, you can heal and get back in the fight.
Devices – Spike Trap with Scatter
- BIGABDABOOM. This is where a lot of your damage will come from – 275% weapon damage AOE. This is amazing for kiting elites and clearing packs of mobs. The high hatred cost is offset by the fast hatred regen with Evasion Fire. You will have hatred because on most elites you won’t have time to spam Elemental Arrow since you have to keep moving.
- Place them anywhere. You drop your traps where your mouse is, so you can throw them very far making them very effective.
Archery – DPS increase for any weapon. I normally use a 2 hand bow, but the bonuses from this skill are too valuable to pass up.
UPDATE – As you progress in Inferno, the hardest thing is to keep your DPS up. In the later acts, I use Sharpshooter over archery since it’s a greater DPS increase for me. This may vary for you guys based upon your weapon choices, Crit Rating, and Crit Damage. For me, using a 2 Hand bow with about 80% Crit Damage and only 5%Crit Rating caused Sharpshooter to increase my DPS by about 35%. So, if you want to kill things faster, try switching out Archery for Sharpshooter, it can help you beat the gear checks!
Steady Aim – 20% damage is nothing is in 10 yards of you. Evasion Fire backflip is 15 yards, so this will normally be in effect!
Tactical Advantage – OK, you’ve read this far and now you’re wondering “Hey, no Sharpshooter?” Yes, no Sharpshooter. Yes it’s a “mathematical” DPS loss on your character sheet, but it’s an overall DPS GAIN because YOU WILL LIVE LONGER! Here’s why this talent is move valuable than the god like Sharpshooter:
- Super Speed! 60% movement speed, even for 2 seconds, is amazing in Inferno. You’ll kite better, escape better, live longer, and kill more demons because of this skill. The ability to reposition, or to run, will help you in all situations in this game.
- Super Synergy! This talent is triggered from Vault, Smoke Screen, and the Evasive fire backflip. Hmmm…those abilities sound familiar… This talent works will all of this build’s core survival abilities! This makes it a must have!
- Inferno is Kite or die! I can’t say this enough, you have to keep moving and have almost no time to stand in one spot and turret. “OK, but the critical strike buff stacks while you’re not using it, so while you’re kiting you build up more DPS.” This is true, but this argument is flawed in that it fails to consider how many times you’ll be able to actually strike the enemy before you run out of space, Discipline, or health. Until Inferno, I think Sharpshooter is a must have, but once you get into the end game, mobs move too fast and are not as effected by slows and CC as they were. You will NEED the speed boost that comes from this talent. Finally, remember this: “you can’t DPS a target if you’re dead.”
I’ve had a lot of requests to see how I play this build versus various elite combos. Below are some of the combos requested, if you’d like to see more request them in the comments!
Waller / Mortor / Reflect / Arcane Eels in Act 2
Waller / Jailor / Desecrator / Arcane Withering Decievers in Act 2
Waller / Jailor / Desecrator / Arcane Serpent Magus’s in Act 2
Illusionist / Nightmare / Teleporter / Frozen Naga Champion in Act 2. Spoiler Alert: I die in this one, but come back to finish them off
Siegebreaker Kill on Inferno. Nothing too exciting here, just kite, kite, kite, drop some traps, rinse and repeat. Some of you may notice at the end that I’m actually using Sharpshooter in this clip. I was giving it a test run and it really helps with the elites. I switched it with Archery and it was a big DPS increase, which helps since every new part of Inferno feels like a new gear check.
So there you have it. This build does take a little getting used to, but so does Inferno. If you’re having trouble in Inferno, I suggest switching to this build and then go back to HELL Act 4 and give it a shot.
Realize that while using a quality build is key, it’s only part of the puzzle. In my next post, I’ll cover what gear you should be upgrading to for your continual progression in Inferno.
Important: Many of the strategies and tips I share here were originally inspired by the people at the Diablo 3 Gold Secrets Forum. If you're serious about making the big bucks in Diablo 3, or just being the best players, you need to signup ASAP.