Feb 202015

48 percent double strike!
48 percent double strike! And the build is not yet even complete

I have the most awesome monk, except I nearly never play him. Too sad really, he is truly amazing, a build concept that started as an exercise in “can I do that?” and is working out to be “Whoa! That was amazing!”

The build concept was an attempt to accumulate the highest possible Offhand proc rate, Double Strike, and Melee Speed, just to see what would happen. It is not about hitting hard, it is about hitting as often as possible. And through level 17 the results were quite impressive.

Yesterday I had the opportunity to dust off Oriental Adventures and earn some experience. He hit 19th level and finally, finally(!) got to take the Killer enhancement. Oh. My. God. Killer and Fatal Harrier together are jaw-dropping. Everything I had hoped they would be.

I did learn some lessons though:

It can be very much a solo build. Oriental cranks up the capabilities on every kill. Not every group kill, every personal kill. When grouped up it is a race; even the hirelings will sometimes finish off the last 10 hit points of the bad guy and prevent Oriental from getting credit. You may not see the full capabilities of this build if you only play in groups.

Also, this style is very time-sensitive: both Fatal Harrier and Killer require that you keep killing things every 15-20 seconds. It can change how you fight; I found myself lining up the next opponent before finishing off the current one. I would sometimes take a bad guy down to the dregs of his red bar and then kite him without killing him just to extend the kill streak for as long as possible.

It is handwrap-intensive, both in acquiring a good selection and in swapping them in and out. Because you hit so often, having the correct handwraps for the current opponent is even more important than usual. Oriental has nine pairs of handwraps on his action bars right now and swaps constantly, sometimes for each opponent.

One last drawback is that the most incredible powers of this build are not effective versus bosses. He is not bad against bosses, but he is not as good as he is versus non-bosses. You cannot maintain a constant stream of deaths when you are punching something with 100,000 hit points.

That seems like a lot of lessons and drawbacks. But they fade away when you play the build the way it is meant to be played.

It is perfect for quest chains like the Druid’s Curse, where the only challenge is handling the masses of monsters. This is what Oriental was designed to do, to handle masses of monsters, and watching him do it is a thing of beauty.

Fistful artistry.

And the best part is that I am not even done, it is going to get better! For instance, I only have one rank in Deft Strikes: Oriental still has 6% more sustainable Double Strike coming! Not to mention all the wonders of the Epic Destiny trees.

I really need to find a way to play this build more often. I can’t wait to see how it does in the end game!

πŸ™‚ πŸ˜€ πŸ™‚

What do you think?

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