Warning It appears that you may be blocking the ads, and we are fine with it (read more here). That said, it would really be awesome if you decided to whitelist our website or make a donation :) You can also send us Bitcoins (1DEkropiHPWBmfJxogFaXQscfzhmdpTti4)!

Wizard Firebird Archon Build (Patch 2.4.2 / Season 8)

Last updated on Oct 21, 2016 at 09:00 by Deadset 116 comments

Table of Contents

The most reworked set in Diablo history, the Firebird's Finery set nevertheless retains many of its characteristics: damage building up over time, immolating entire screens of enemies, and the constant pursuit of a larger fire. This guide merges Firebird with the powers of Archon into a bursty playstyle that is available in both solo progression, group GR farming and normal rift farming variations, explained in that order.

The build requires the following set pieces:

1. About the Author

This build is presented to you by Deadset, one of the very few professional Diablo 3 players. Deadset regularly publishes video guides on Youtube, where you can see how this and other builds play out in practice.

2. Builds

Solo Progression Speedruns
Active Skills
Left Mouse Button Spectral Blade Icon Spectral Blade Flame Blades Flame Blades Right Mouse Button Archon Icon Archon Combustion Combustion 1 Frost Nova Icon Frost Nova Bone Chill Bone Chill 2 Magic Weapon Icon Magic Weapon Force Weapon Force Weapon 3 Teleport Icon Teleport Safe Passage Safe Passage 4 Ice Armor Icon Ice Armor Crystallize Crystallize
Passive Skills
(battle.net link)
Active Skills
Left Mouse Button Spectral Blade Icon Spectral Blade Flame Blades Flame Blades Right Mouse Button Archon Icon Archon Combustion Combustion 1 Familiar Icon Familiar Sparkflint Sparkflint 2 Magic Weapon Icon Magic Weapon Force Weapon Force Weapon 3 Teleport Icon Teleport Wormhole Wormhole 4 Storm Armor Icon Storm Armor Scramble Scramble
Passive Skills
(battle.net link)

3. Skill Rotation and Firebird Explanation

The Firebird Archon Wizard strategy is to lure enemies, dragging them along to form the biggest fight possible. Notice that the 6-piece set bonus will scale your damage and protection for each burning enemy, and will automatically max out if an elite enemy is burning — contributing to the elite hunting playstyle of the build. Similarly to other Archon Archon specs, this build revolves around the in- and out- of Archon Archon dynamic, trying to conserve and increase power as much as you can outside your alternate form and unleashing the built up damage potential during the Archon Archon uptime.

Once you return to regular form, you have an important task: each of your attacks will increase Chantodo's Resolve set pulse power, stacking up to 20 times — a stack that needs to be maxed out before the next Archon Archon activation. Besides Archon Archon and Spectral Blade Spectral Blade, your normal form abilities comprise of passive buffs (Magic Weapon Magic Weapon and an Armor spell — to be kept up permanently) and utility skills (Teleport Teleport, Frost Nova Frost Nova — used defensively).

To clarify the Firebird set bonus, dealing Fire damage with any character skill (weapon damage and item procs are excluded) cause the enemy to burn for 1000% weapon damage over a 3-second period. Doing fire damage with any other skill will add to the DoT damage in 1000% increments, and reset its duration. Once the enemy is burning from three separate fire skills, he will ignite with an indefinite 3000% weapon damage per second DoT — which does not imply, of course, that you should stop attacking that enemy. There is an accompanying visual over the head of the monster in the shape of a flame, once the permanent DoT is applied. The DoT will not crit (similarly to other DoTs in the game), but will factor in your crit stats into an average number. The DoT will display every 0.8 seconds and will not interact with attack speed in any way. Moving more than two screens away from the burning enemy will make the DoT fall off, but coming back in range will resume it.

4. Skills, Runes and Passives

Its presence in the build is pretty self-explanatory, but Archon Archon should be on your skill bar. With the latest changes to the Firebird set the recommended rune becomes Combustion Combustion, as its Fire element will enable the three Archon damage abilities (Arcane Blast, Arcane Strike and Disintegration Wave) to proc the Firebird set. Since the scaling of Chantodo's Wave of Destruction is also determined by your Archon Archon rune, it makes more sense to be able to Ignite enemies at will while in Archon Archon form and stack purely into Fire damage.

During your Archon Archon downtime, you will be using Spectral Blade Spectral Blade to ramp up the damage of your fire spells (which your Archon Archon abilities count for, due to the fire rune Combustion Combustion) by using the rune Flame Blades Flame Blades. Following a similar logic, but acting as a passive DPS increase with a generous 10 minute duration, you will be using the additive damage buff of Magic Weapon Magic Weapon Force Weapon Force Weapon.

Your time of relative weakness comes when Archon Archon falls off, and immediate repositioning will often be in order — evading a bad situation, engaging fresh enemies for Ancient Parthan Defenders Ancient Parthan Defenders procs, or simply moving ahead to a new area. Teleport Teleport will be instrumental for all these purposes, along with the damage reduction of the Safe Passage Safe Passage rune. When running Torment rifts, you can find a minor benefit in switching to the more mobile Wormhole Wormhole rune.

The independence of Halo of Arlyse Halo of Arlyse procs might discourage you to take Frost Nova Frost Nova at first — after all, the ring will cast a generic Frost Nova Frost Nova regardless of you slotting the skill or not. The reason to include it in the build is that the Halo of Arlyse Halo of Arlyse spam will inherit the rune from your skill bar, and Bone Chill Bone Chill will essentially provide you with a permanent 33% additive damage increase. In normal rifts this protective cooldown will not be necessary, so you will do well to swap it out for the minor passive damage increase of Familiar Familiar Sparkflint Sparkflint.

For additional protection, we will be using Ice Armor Ice Armor with the massive bulwark of Crystallize Crystallize. The short reach of the build will inevitably put you in melee brawls, refreshing your Crystallize stacks constantly. The added value from Halo of Arlyse Halo of Arlyse will bring excellent crowd control on top of the mitigation, solidifying Ice Armor Ice Armor as the defensive spell of choice for soloing Greater Rifts. As a final adjustment for speed farming, you should replace this slot with Storm Armor Storm Armor Scramble Scramble for its reliable movement speed proc.

This concludes the overview of the Active Skills, now let us look through the Passives.

Two utility picks provide the foundation of the passive choices. Evocation Evocation offers a simple, but powerful effect: 20% additional cooldown reduction. Illusionist Illusionist is a passive with a lot of depth and nuance; it serves this build specifically by resetting the Teleport Teleport cooldown when receiving a damage spike in your non-Archon form, and working with a pre-mitigation calculation it gives you near infinite mobility. The additional 30% movement speed after Teleport Teleporting makes the passive attractive even when doing non-threatening content.

Reworked into a comparable function to other cheat deaths, Unstable Anomaly Unstable Anomaly gives you one shot at dodging a lethal situation. Operating on a standard 60-second cooldown and adding a 3-second stun to nearby enemies — plus a solid, 400% max life shield for 5 seconds — it will become a constant companion to your Greater Rift pushes. It is less necessary in speed farming content, and can be shifted out so you can take the additional damage from Power Hungry Power Hungry instead.

Finally, Audacity Audacity gets a chance to shine in this dominantly melee range build by bringing an impressive 30% multiplicative damage increase against enemies within 15 yards.

5. Best in Slot Gear and Alternatives

The build incorporates the complete Firebird's Finery 6-piece bonus, taking six of the seven available pieces and opening up the jewelry for the Endless Walk set and its damage multiplication bonuses. The build benefits greatly from Cooldown Reduction, so it comes as a recommended roll on Firebird's Pinions Firebird's Pinions (along with Intelligence, Vitality and Life %) and Firebird's Talons Firebird's Talons (along with both Crit stats and Intelligence). Firebird's Down Firebird's Down, Firebird's Breast Firebird's Breast and Firebird's Tarsi Firebird's Tarsi should remain pure Toughness slots. Crit chance, alongside high Intelligence and Vitality is recommended on Firebird's Plume Firebird's Plume. Note that stacking Armor benefits you because of the balancing of sources of mitigation, as All Resistance is already abundant on an Intelligence-based character.

Not skipping on any of the six available set pieces to obtain the full Firebird's Finery set bonus allows you to split between offense and defense in the jewelry slots. One of the 2.4 reworks, the Endless Walk set — The Compass Rose The Compass Rose ring and The Traveler's Pledge The Traveler's Pledge amulet — adds a unique mechanic that slowly increases your damage by up to a 100% if you remain stationary, and drains it away and increases your damage reduction while moving. Firebird Archon Wizards share this playstyle, alternating long distance movement to favorable monster density with periods of stationary Arcane Blast and Arcane Strike spam.

A socketed Halo of Arlyse Halo of Arlyse will occupy the second ring slot in solo GR progression. Halo of Arlyse Halo of Arlyse will multiply the effectiveness of your Ice Armor Ice Armor mitigation, and provide additional crowd control. As long as the requirements of the ring are met, it will release a constant streak of Frost Nova Frost Novas, unhindered by internal cooldowns. Note that this slot is interchangeable with Convention of Elements Convention of Elements depending on your better rolled item, with the worse one going in the Cube jewelry slot. Finally, since in normal rifts you can easily overkill on mitigation and damage, it is best that you focus on movement speed instead. The Act III cache legendary Avarice Band Avarice Band is perfectly suitable for that, as its high Pickup Radius and synergy with Boon of the Hoarder Boon of the Hoarder will speed you up and keep you wealthy as you complete runs.

In solo progression, Halo of Arlyse Halo of Arlyse finds a synergistic companion in the Ancient Parthan Defenders Ancient Parthan Defenders, whose unique property triggers off Freeze effects as well (inexplicably missing from the item tooltip). With the chain triggers of Frost Nova Frost Nova from the ring, diving into massive fights turns from a suicide tactic into a survival tool through the numerous damage reduction procs of the bracer. An important playstyle tip to remember is that crowd control on the same monster diminishes with each successive application — so always seek out fresh enemies to reduce damage with. In normal rifts, definitely change into Nemesis Bracers Nemesis Bracers to provide a constant streak of elites for a cubed In-geom In-geom.

Fazula's Improbable Chain Fazula's Improbable Chain belt is tailored after Archon builds, with a BiS roll giving you 50 automatic Archon Archon stacks when entering Archon Archon form. Aiding you in your most vulnerable moments, this belt gets your damage and Toughness off the ground quicker, making it vital for the playstyle.

The mandatory weapon and offhand for the build are the Chantodo's Resolve set, Chantodo's Will Chantodo's Will and Chantodo's Force Chantodo's Force. Essential to the playstyle by providing the stacking Wave of Destruction effect, this set will be responsible for a 7000% weapon damage chunk in your DPS. Rolls-wise, aim for Cooldown Reduction and either % Damage Increase or Life per Hit on Chantodo's Will Chantodo's Will, and high damage range, Crit Chance and main stats (Intelligence and Vitality) on Chantodo's Force Chantodo's Force. Note that Area Damage is not considered a priority due to the fact that Wave of Destruction (the pulsing of the Chantodo set) does the majority of your damage, and it is considered a proc by the game — thus, not proccing other procs (like Area Damage).

Slot Pieces Stat Priority
Head
  1. Intelligence
  2. Socket
  3. Critical Hit Chance
  4. Vitality
Shoulders
  1. Intelligence
  2. Vitality
  3. Cooldown Reduction
  4. Life %
Torso
  1. Intelligence
  2. 3 Sockets
  3. Vitality
  4. Reduced damage from Elites
  5. Armor
Wrists
  1. Intelligence
  2. Critical Hit Chance
  3. Fire Damage
  4. Vitality
  5. Armor
Hands
  1. Intelligence
  2. Critical Hit Chance
  3. Critical Hit Damage
  4. Cooldown Reduction
  5. Vitality
Waist
  1. Intelligence
  2. Vitality
  3. Armor
  4. Life %
Legs
  1. Intelligence
  2. 2 Sockets
  3. Vitality
  4. Armor
Feet
  1. Intelligence
  2. Vitality
  3. Armor
  4. All Resistance
  5. Movement Speed
Amulet
  1. Socket
  2. Critical Hit Damage
  3. Critical Hit Chance
  4. Fire Damage
  5. Intelligence
Ring #1
  1. Socket
  2. Critical Hit Damage
  3. Critical Hit Chance
  4. Cooldown Reduction
  5. Intelligence
Ring #2
  1. Socket
  2. Critical Hit Damage
  3. Critical Hit Chance
  4. Cooldown Reduction
  5. Intelligence
Weapon
  1. High Damage Range
  2. Intelligence
  3. Socket (preferably from Ramaladni's Gift Ramaladni's Gift)
  4. Cooldown Reduction
  5. Life per Hit
  6. % Weapon Damage
Off-hand
  1. High Damage Range
  2. Intelligence
  3. Cooldown Reduction
  4. Vitality
  5. Increased Damage Against Elites

6. Paragon Points

Slot Paragon Points
Core
  1. Movement Speed up to 25% cap
  2. Intelligence
  3. Vitality
  4. Maximum Arcane Power
Offense
  1. Critical Hit Damage
  2. Critical Hit Chance
  3. Cooldown Reduction
  4. Attack Speed
Defense
  1. Armor
  2. Life %
  3. All Resistance
  4. Life Regeneration
Utility
  1. Life on Hit
  2. Resource Cost Reduction
  3. Area Damage
  4. Gold Find

7. Gems

Your three jewelry sockets will be taken up by the legendary gems Bane of the Trapped Bane of the Trapped, Bane of the Powerful Bane of the Powerful and either Bane of the Stricken Bane of the Stricken (for GRs) or Boon of the Hoarder Boon of the Hoarder (Torments).

  • Bane of the Trapped Bane of the Trapped is a potent source of additional damage, as it is its own multiplier in your total damage calculation. You will benefit from it naturally, as Archon Wizards tend to fight in melee range to maximize the Wave of Destruction — Bane of the Trapped Bane of the Trapped procs itself with the level 25 property, along with the constant Frost Nova Frost Nova triggers.
  • Bane of the Powerful Bane of the Powerful provides a 20% multiplicative damage increase after killing an elite pack, as well as baseline 15% damage increase against, and damage reduction from, elite enemies. The bonus duration upgrades at a steady pace with gem levels, and is usually a good indication of your power — if it falls off, you are past the limits of your current setup.
  • Introduced in Season 4, Bane of the Stricken Bane of the Stricken occupies the third and final jewelry socket during Greater Rift progression. Building up your damage multiplicatively in prolonged fights and with a level 25 bonus specifically targeting Rift Guardians, this gem is designed to assist AoE heavy builds in their struggle against single target, high HP enemies. The Firebird Archon Wizard is not an exception, and Bane of the Stricken Bane of the Stricken is considered a great addition to the setup.
  • In Torments Bane of the Stricken Bane of the Stricken will build up too slowly to matter, and is best replaced by a speed run oriented gem like Boon of the Hoarder Boon of the Hoarder. The gem nets you an average of 20-30 million gold per TX run, with no particular focus on Gold Find stats, and it gives you a massive short-term speed boost while picking up gold. With the use of Avarice Band Avarice Band and its massive Pickup Radius bonuses, this will be done automatically, allowing you to focus on the clear.
Slot Gems
Jewelry
Helm
Torso and Pants
Weapon

8. Kanai's Cube

The Kanai's Cube recommendations are as follows: The Furnace The Furnace (solo GRs) or In-geom In-geom (speedfarm) for the weapon slot, Aquila Cuirass Aquila Cuirass for the armor slot, and Convention of Elements Convention of Elements for the jewelry slot.

  • Your weapon Cube slot in solo progression should be taken by The Furnace The Furnace, the strongest generic two-handed weapon in the game. With its 50% additional elite damage affix it speeds up clear times greatly, as Champion and Rift Guardian fights are the usual GR bottleneck. Additional damage however is a non-concern in normal rifts, where In-geom In-geom shines by reducing 10 seconds flat off the cooldown of all of your skills after you burst an elite. In a normal rift, the 15-second duration of the effect is plenty of time to find a new elite and refresh the In-geom In-geom bonus. This will allow you to chain Archon Archon with very minimal downtime.
  • Aquila Cuirass Aquila Cuirass will halve incoming damage as long as Arcane Power does not dip below 90% of its reserve, which should be a natural state for a build without spenders in regular form, and free damage dealing skills in Archon Archon.
  • Your jewelry slot will be best taken by Convention of Elements Convention of Elements; the ring rotates through all elements available to Wizards, providing a massive bonus to your main damage skills during the Fire proc (a cycle you will need to learn and time to maximize your damage).

9. Follower

For more information regarding followers, we advise you to read our Follower Guide, which contains detailed advice for choosing the skills and the gear of your follower.

10. ChangeLog

  • 21 Oct. 2016: Updated the guide to reflect its shift away from reset mechanics.
  • 21 Jul. 2016: Overhauled the guide into a 2.4.2 Firebird Archon Wizard.
  • 14 Jan. 2016: Patch 2.4 update.
  • 24 Aug. 2015: Added Kanai's Cube recommendations for Patch 2.3.
Force desktop version
Force mobile version