Season 23 Group Experience Meta Guide

Last updated on Dec 16, 2021 at 09:00 by Deadset 1 comment

This page contains an overview of the current meta outlook for group XP farming in Season 25 of Diablo 3, listing the different roles that exist in groups and which classes and builds can fulfill them, as well as the tiering of the party compositions and how they play out.

1.

Introduction to Experience Farming

One of the most important tasks in Diablo III endgame progression is the acquisition of Paragon levels, a time-efficient and linear means of advancing the power of your character. This task is most successfully performed in groups of four, where a party of players pool their resources and abilities into a hyper-optimized team that is meant to clear the upper tiers of Greater Rifts at a breakneck speed. To put it succinctly, you will never outperform an organized four man group in terms of experience acquisition, so the formation of a steady farming group is one of the baselines of competitive seasonal performance.

The group experience metagame is defined by its reliance on synergistic buffs and expedient enemy kill speed, and is usually dominated by classes and builds that excel at those two tasks. With that in mind, the Tier List for the current Group Experience Meta is displayed below.

2.

GR Group Experience Farming Tier List

2.1.

Top Tier

The following setup(s) are considered the best group combination for Paragon experience farming in the game.

2.2.

High Tier

The following setup(s) fall between 5-10% less efficiency than the Top Tier group setup, resulting in very decent farming performance with minor sacrifices.

2.3.

Mid Tier

The following setup(s) fall between 10-25% less efficiency than the Top Tier group setup, resulting in acceptable performance with noticeable lag behind the optimal groups.

Low Tier — the following builds fall between 25-35% less efficiency than the Top Tier group setup, and are the bare minimum in terms of Paragon farming performance that can still be considered decent and somewhat competitive.

  • With Top-, High- and Mid- Tier compositions so far ahead of the rest of the competition, there are currently no Low Tier ranking compositions that are worth considering in the XP farming meta.
3.

GR Group Experience Farming Setups Explanation

In the following paragraphs, you can get an overview of the setup and gameplay required to execute any of the currently ranked group compositions.

3.1.

Double Inna Monks

This composition makes use of two Mystic Ally Inna Monks, ideally — but not necessarily — playing the higher DPS Shenlong set (Shenlong's Fist of Legend Shenlong's Fist of Legend and Shenlong's Relentless Assault Shenlong's Relentless Assault) version of the build, as explained below, and are supported by the supreme damage buffs of a Support Demon Hunter and the ubiquitous survivability increases from a Support Barbarian.

Gameplay-wise, the group is lead by a scouting Support Demon Hunter at the helm, spreading some of the most powerful damage-increasing effects in the game. Most notable is the interaction between Entangling Shot Entangling Shot and Odyssey's End Odyssey's End for the massive, group-wide damage buff, but you also spread the crit buff of Multishot Multishot Wind Chill Wind Chill and the multiplicative damage boost from Wolf Companion Wolf Companion. The Support Demon Hunter can still be a capable monster puller (albeit helped out by the Support Barbarian — see below) due to the interaction between Bolas Bolas and Leonine Bow of Hashir Leonine Bow of Hashir, but for XP farming particularly we advise that you run Yang's Recurve Yang's Recurve as your weapon for the massive Resource Cost Reduction bonuses it provides.

The Support DH is followed closely in tow by the Support Barbarian, which spreads their myriad of helpful buffs — most importantly, the damage reduction and crowd control immunity from Ignore Pain Ignore Pain Mob Rule Mob Rule. Note that unlike other XP farming setups, this party comp keeps the grouping powers of Ground Stomp Ground Stomp Wrenching Smash Wrenching Smash and Ancient Spear Ancient Spear Rage Flip Rage Flip, since at most you only have one other pull (Leonine Bow of Hashir Leonine Bow of Hashir's effect), and even the zDH usually runs Yang's Recurve Yang's Recurve for the Resource Cost Reduction. Naturally, the Barbarian still maintains vital buffs like War Cry War Cry Veteran's Warning Veteran's Warning and Threatening Shout Threatening Shout Falter Falter.

The duo of Mystic Ally Inna Monks should always be on the supports' toes, making immediate use of the DH's damage buffs and the Barbarian's powerful protective buffs and all-encompassing monster pulls. In a Shenlong set-based version of the build, you only have space for one source of cooldown reduction, coming from Messerschmidt's Reaver Messerschmidt's Reaver in the Cube. This necessitates that you spread cooldown reduction across all gear pieces to reduce unavailable skills, mobility most of all, to a minimum.

If you opt for a version of the build that combines the use of In-geom In-geom and Echoing Fury Echoing Fury as your weapon and off-hand, you trade Shenlong's superior damage multipliers for significantly easier, more consistent and mobile gameplay. You will drop slightly in GR tiers, but can make up the difference with smoother and faster runs, aiming to hit the ~2 min. mark per clear.

Other alterations to the setup can be made mostly to increase survivability; you can alternate between Radiance Radiance and Blinding Speed Blinding Speed on Dashing Strike Dashing Strike depending on your needs, and you can swap damage buffing passives like Momentum Momentum and Unity Unity for Near Death Experience Near Death Experience and The Guardian's Path The Guardian's Path as you see fit. As a last resort for survivability, especially at the earlier stages of character progression, you can swap the Aughild set pieces (Aughild's Power Aughild's Power and Aughild's Search Aughild's Search) for Lefebvre's Soliloquy Lefebvre's Soliloquy and Spirit Guards Spirit Guards respectively, greatly increasing your toughness at the cost of damage.

In group XP farming, the Inna Mystic Ally Monks largely play out like their solo GR progression counterparts, mostly paying attention to pre-buffing their engagements with the use of Cyclone Strike Cyclone Strike (to proc Bindings of the Lesser Gods Bindings of the Lesser Gods) and monitoring the use of Mystic Ally Mystic Ally. They should be popping the active effect either at elite engagements if they have an In-geom In-geom to proc, or at a large trash pull if they rely on Messerschmidt's Reaver Messerschmidt's Reaver resets.

3.2.

LoD Mages, a.k.a. the 'Rat Run'

This composition uses two LoD "Rat" Skeletal Mages Necromancers as DPS, with the versatile and universal power of the Singularity Singularity rune making for very effective clears in both AoE and single target situations. This setup has the added benefit of being a staple for many Seasons on end, and being very familiar to a large portion of the community, making it relatively easier to form a group of competent people.

Gameplay-wise, this setup leads runs with the Support Necromancer at the charge, freezing enemies into place with Land of the Dead Land of the Dead Frozen Lands Frozen Lands on cooldown, which applies the Krysbin's Sentence Krysbin's Sentence damage bonus in turn due to the hard crowd control effect and indirectly protects your glassy DPS teammates by rendering the monsters helpless. The support Necromancer also applies Frailty Frailty Aura of Frailty Aura of Frailty to freshly discovered enemy packs, clumping them up via the Briggs' Wrath Briggs' Wrath pixel pulling effect, and increases the chance they get critically hit via the Corpse Lance Corpse Lance Brittle Touch Brittle Touch debuff.

The Support Necromancer is followed closely in tow by the Support Barbarian, which spreads their myriad of helpful buffs — most importantly, the damage reduction and crowd control immunity from Ignore Pain Ignore Pain Mob Rule Mob Rule. In a speed farming setup, they drops GR progression staples like Ground Stomp Ground Stomp Wrenching Smash Wrenching Smash and Ancient Spear Ancient Spear Rage Flip Rage Flip (since grouping enemies up is no longer their domain), and focuses on keeping mobility up with Sprint Sprint Forced March Forced March and Leap Leap Iron Impact Iron Impact. They still maintains vital buffs like War Cry War Cry Veteran's Warning Veteran's Warning and Threatening Shout Threatening Shout Falter Falter.

The twin LoD "Rat" Skeletal Mage Necromancers follow in tow, sniping priority targets (especially elites) down with Skeletal Mage Skeletal Mage Singularity Singularity summons; note that hovering the cursor over a particular enemy when summoning a Mage will focus their fire on that target until it is dead or the Mage despawns, giving you a way to focus fire important enemies. By necessity, the Rat Necros will have to stay close to their support companions in order to re-fuel their Essence reserves via the Devour Devour Devouring Aura Devouring Aura restorative effect.

3.3.

Double WoL, a.k.a. the 'Bell Run'

This composition uses two LoD Wave of Light Monks, and are supported by the supreme damage buffs of a Support Demon Hunter and the ubiquitous survivability increases from a Support Barbarian.

This composition uses two LoD Wave of Light Monks as DPS, playing either with the mathematically stronger Pillar of the Ancients Pillar of the Ancients rune, or with the superior AoE and convenience of Explosive Light Explosive Light (our recommendation).

Gameplay-wise, the group is lead by a scouting Support Demon Hunter at the helm, spreading some of the most powerful damage-increasing effects in the game. Most notable is the interaction between Entangling Shot Entangling Shot and Odyssey's End Odyssey's End for the massive, group-wide damage buff, but you also spread the crit buff of Multishot Multishot Wind Chill Wind Chill and the multiplicative damage boost from Wolf Companion Wolf Companion. The Support Demon Hunter can still be a capable monster puller (albeit helped out by the Support Barbarian — see below) due to the interaction between Bolas Bolas and Leonine Bow of Hashir Leonine Bow of Hashir, but for XP farming particularly we advise that you run Yang's Recurve Yang's Recurve as your weapon for the massive Resource Cost Reduction bonuses it provides.

The Support DH is followed closely in tow by the Support Barbarian, which spreads their myriad of helpful buffs — most importantly, the damage reduction and crowd control immunity from Ignore Pain Ignore Pain Mob Rule Mob Rule. Note that unlike other XP farming setups, this party comp keeps the grouping powers of Ground Stomp Ground Stomp Wrenching Smash Wrenching Smash and Ancient Spear Ancient Spear Rage Flip Rage Flip, since at most you only have one other pull (Leonine Bow of Hashir Leonine Bow of Hashir's effect), and even the zDH usually runs Yang's Recurve Yang's Recurve for the Resource Cost Reduction. Naturally, the Barbarian still maintains vital buffs like War Cry War Cry Veteran's Warning Veteran's Warning and Threatening Shout Threatening Shout Falter Falter.

The duo of LoD Wave of Light Monks should always be on the supports' toes, making immediate use of the DH's damage buffs and the Barbarian's powerful protective buffs. In coordinated groups, the Monks should assist each other in the protection of their valuable Squirt's Necklace Squirt's Necklace buffs by putting up damage absorption shields from Mantra of Healing Mantra of Healing (replacing the defensive Mantra of the solo build), and making the Mantra spam costs manageable with the rune Circular Breathing Circular Breathing and the passive Chant of Resonance Chant of Resonance (used over Near Death Experience Near Death Experience). In less coordinated groups, pugs or otherwise, they should take care of their own Squirt's buffs with Serenity Serenity spam instead. Due to their propensity for getting stuck over terrain, the Rabid Strike Rabid Strike clones need to be carefully monitored and managed, with the Monks stopping DPS shortly to let the clones reset to their location.

3.4.

Double Marauders

This composition utilizes two Marauder Demon Hunters, which can use either Multishot or Cluster Arrow damage setups with very comparable performance. The composition is complete with the supreme damage buffs of a Support Demon Hunter, and the ubiquitous toughness increases from a Support Barbarian.

Gameplay-wise, the group is lead by a scouting Support Demon Hunter at the helm, spreading some of the most powerful damage-increasing effects in the game. Most notable is the interaction between Entangling Shot Entangling Shot and Odyssey's End Odyssey's End for the massive, group-wide damage buff, but you also spread the crit buff of Multishot Multishot Wind Chill Wind Chill and the multiplicative damage boost from Wolf Companion Wolf Companion. The Support Demon Hunter can still be a capable monster puller (albeit helped out by the Support Barbarian — see below) due to the interaction between Bolas Bolas and Leonine Bow of Hashir Leonine Bow of Hashir, but for XP farming particularly we advise that you run Yang's Recurve Yang's Recurve as your weapon for the massive Resource Cost Reduction bonuses it provides.

The Support DH is followed closely in tow by the Support Barbarian, which spreads their myriad of helpful buffs — most importantly, the damage reduction and crowd control immunity from Ignore Pain Ignore Pain Mob Rule Mob Rule. Note that unlike other XP farming setups, this party comp keeps the grouping powers of Ground Stomp Ground Stomp Wrenching Smash Wrenching Smash and Ancient Spear Ancient Spear Rage Flip Rage Flip, since at most you only have one other pull (Leonine Bow of Hashir Leonine Bow of Hashir's effect), and even the zDH usually runs Yang's Recurve Yang's Recurve for the Resource Cost Reduction. Naturally, the Barbarian still maintains vital buffs like War Cry War Cry Veteran's Warning Veteran's Warning and Threatening Shout Threatening Shout Falter Falter.

The twin Marauder Multishot Demon Hunters stay close to the support pack, relying entirely on their supports for survival and buffing and going all-out on sources of increased damage. With the changes in Patch 2.7.2, Sentry Sentry becomes the centerpiece of Marauder builds once again as the original spender auto-fire abilities of the set were restored. Gameplay-wise, the duo of Marauders play out their rotation closely to their solo GR counterparts, developing Sentry Sentry nests on the go as often as their cooldowns permit, and mowing enemies down with the combined barrage between the mechanized turrets and their own shots. Most of the survivability will come from Wraps of Clarity Wraps of Clarity upkeep from generator shots, which also ties in the solitary damage buff mechanic of the Bastions of Will set (Focus Focus and Restraint Restraint. Since Vengeance Vengeance is not permanently up in this Dawn Dawn-less spec, it should be reserved for major engagements (big elite pulls, Rift Guardians). A final alteration you can consider is swapping the solo-oriented Zoey's Secret Zoey's Secret survival tool for the speedfarm-appropriate defenses of St. Archew's Gage St. Archew's Gage — their 10-second defensive buff per elite engagement is more than enough to overlap in the fast-paced XP farm runs.

3.5.

Double Bomb Saders

This composition utilizes two LoD Bombardment Crusaders, the supreme damage buffs of a Support Demon Hunter, and the ubiquitous toughness increases from a Support Barbarian.

Gameplay-wise, the group is lead by a scouting Support Demon Hunter at the helm, spreading some of the most powerful damage-increasing effects in the game. Most notable is the interaction between Entangling Shot Entangling Shot and Odyssey's End Odyssey's End for the massive, group-wide damage buff, but you also spread the crit buff of Multishot Multishot Wind Chill Wind Chill and the multiplicative damage boost from Wolf Companion Wolf Companion. The Support Demon Hunter can still be a capable monster puller (albeit helped out by the Support Barbarian — see below) due to the interaction between Bolas Bolas and Leonine Bow of Hashir Leonine Bow of Hashir, but for XP farming particularly we advise that you run Yang's Recurve Yang's Recurve as your weapon for the massive Resource Cost Reduction bonuses it provides.

The Support DH is followed closely in tow by the Support Barbarian, which spreads their myriad of helpful buffs — most importantly, the damage reduction and crowd control immunity from Ignore Pain Ignore Pain Mob Rule Mob Rule. Note that unlike other XP farming setups, this party comp keeps the grouping powers of Ground Stomp Ground Stomp Wrenching Smash Wrenching Smash and Ancient Spear Ancient Spear Rage Flip Rage Flip, since at most you only have one other pull (Leonine Bow of Hashir Leonine Bow of Hashir's effect), and even the zDH usually runs Yang's Recurve Yang's Recurve for the Resource Cost Reduction. Naturally, the Barbarian still maintains vital buffs like War Cry War Cry Veteran's Warning Veteran's Warning and Threatening Shout Threatening Shout Falter Falter.

The twin LoD Bombardment Crusaders stay close to the support pack, relying entirely on their supports for survival and buffing and going all-out on sources of increased damage. Gameplay-wise, the LoD Bomb Saders have an additional pull to contribute to the group with Condemn Condemn Vacuum Vacuum, which is also used to buff up their damage through Strongarm Bracers Strongarm Bracers right before the Bombardment Bombardment burst. Throughout the GR, you will be passively chunking enemies down with the automated Bombardment Bombardments from Belt of the Trove Belt of the Trove, and your priority will be to have Iron Skin Iron Skin Reflective Skin Reflective Skin up consistently to skyrocket the Barrels of Spikes Barrels of Spikes damage. Manual Bombardment Bombardments should be reserved for priority targets — whenever your supports form a large enough trash pull, when Elites are stacked, or at the Rift Guardian.

To further increase the build's damage and utility however, the build makes several adjustments from the solo GR progression skills and gear, as follows:

4.

Closing Words

In conclusion, keep in mind that Greater Rift speed farming for experience, legendary gem upgrades and overall gear drops will constitute the bulk of a Season's playtime, so keep the following general grouping guidelines in mind:

  • Communication is key, and voice comms are even better. Try to organize the party in such a way that you can relay information quickly. Be civil and punctual with your GR teammates.
  • Track your performance and try to optimize! Gathering Pools of Reflection to improve experience gain, synchronize gambling at Kadala across the party, schedule break times and note your overall GR speed over time to improve your group.
  • Do not be afraid to stray from the top tier meta if it will result in more fun for all players involved. The absolute best party composition is only as valuable as you can maintain consistency and interest in playing it, and a party comp that keeps you entertained and engaged for hours on end is far more efficient than the cookie cutter that you get bored from in 10 runs.
  • Have fun!
5.

Changelog

  • 16 Dec. 2021: Rankings updated and various setups added and removed for Season 25.
  • 23 Jul. 2021: Rankings updated and additional setup added for Season 24.
  • 21 May 2021: Page added.
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