Guide to Farming Regular (Nephalem) Rifts Efficiently
There are three core activities in Adventure Mode, the gameplay mode where you will spend the majority of your playtime: Bounties, Regular ("Nephalem") Rifts, and Greater Rifts. Regular Rifts — also referred to as Nephalem Rifts, Normal Rifts, or "Difficulty X" Rifts (i.e. "T13 Rifts") — take select tilesets and layouts from the Campaign, cut out any story elements and cutscenes from them, and arrange them in random patterns with high variance from floor to floor.
Rifts also populate the levels with unusual monster combos that are also not tied in theme with the respective tileset, making the levels quite disparate. The unifying element of Regular Rifts is their density of trash and elite monsters that drop gold and loot, putting an emphasis on specs that gain power from picking up gold and regularly killing elites.
Rewards from Regular Rifts
Regular Rifts offer high density of elite and trash enemies, whose kills yield item and gold drops (unlike Greater Rifts, where the only loot comes from the Rift Guardian). Along with the ability to spawn Treasure Goblins, this makes Regular Rifts very efficient for farming gold and regular crafting materials. Regular Rifts also yield a reasonable number of Blood Shards (higher than bounties, lower than equivalent difficulty Greater Rifts), making them a decent source of currency to gamble with. There is a bonus to your legendary drop rate inside Rifts that adds up with the base drop rate from increasing difficulties, making Rifts more efficient at obtaining legendary and set items than Bounties. The legendary drop rate inside Rifts scales as such:
- 25% on Normal to Master;
- 44% on Torment I;
- 65% on Torment II;
- 90% on Torment III;
- 119% on Torment IV;
- 151% on Torment V;
- 189% on Torment VI;
- 236% on Torment VII;
- 295% on Torment VIII;
- 369% on Torment IX;
- 461% on Torment X;
- 577% on Torment XI;
- 721% on Torment XII;
- 901% on Torment XIII.
Regular Rifts are the best place to farm Death's Breaths, a crucial crafting material used in many early, mid and endgame Kanai's Cube recipes: extraction of legendary powers, upgrading rares into legendaries, conversion of set items into other set pieces, and transmutation of the yellow, blue and white crafting materials. Regular Rifts offer a higher concentration of elite enemies (where the DBs come from) than bounties, and Death's Breaths do not drop in Greater Rifts at all. The chance to obtain Death's Breaths from elites and Guardians scales with difficulty:
- 15% chance on Normal;
- 18% chance on Hard;
- 21% chance on Expert;
- 25% chance on Master;
- 31% chance on Torment I;
- 37% chance on Torment II;
- 44% chance on Torment III;
- 53% chance on Torment IV;
- 64% chance on Torment V;
- 75% chance on Torment VI;
- 90% chance on Torment VII;
- 1 guaranteed DB and 15% for a second on Torment VIII;
- 1 guaranteed DB and 25% for a second on Torment IX;
- 1 guaranteed DB and 50% for a second on Torment X;
- 1 guaranteed DB and 90% for a second on Torment XI;
- 2 guaranteed DBs and 12% chance for a 3rd on Torment XII;
- 2 guaranteed DBs and 25% chance for a 3rd on Torment XIII.
Entry to Greater Rifts can only be gained via Greater Rift Keystones, which are only obtained from slaying the Rift Guardian inside a Regular Rift. The number of Greater Rift Keystones that you obtain from slain Guardians starts at a base of 1 for Normal. The chance for a 2nd Keystone (and even 3rd) increases with difficulty:
- 5% chance on Hard;
- 10% chance on Expert;
- 15% chance on Master;
- 20% chance on Torment I;
- 25% chance on Torment II;
- 31% chance on Torment III;
- 38% chance on Torment IV;
- 44% chance on Torment V;
- 51% chance on Torment VI;
- 60% chance on Torment VII;
- 70% chance on Torment VIII;
- 80% chance on Torment IX;
- 90% chance on Torment X;
- 2 guaranteed keystones on Torment XI;
- 2 guaranteed keystones and 12% chance for a 3rd on Torment XII;
- 2 guaranteed keystones and 25% chance for a 3rd on Torment XIII.
You can only find "goblin packs", a congregation of several treasure goblins in one spot, inside Regular Rifts. This excludes the bounty-specific Rainbow and Menagerist Goblins, but will include a generous mixture of all the others, often with more than one of a type. The rewards from several Blood Thieves (Blood Shards), Odious Collectors (crafting mats), Gem Hoarders (gems), and Gelatinous Sires and Insufferable Miscreants (high legendary drop rate) is in high demand at any point of character progression.
How to do Regular Rifts Efficiently
Pick the highest difficulty where you will still be time efficient. In a RNG driven game like Diablo 3, it is more valuable to try your chance at loot multiple times with medium success rate, than just once on a higher tier. There is no hard measure for efficiency, but a rule of thumb is to complete the Regular Rift from start to the Rift Guardian within 5 minutes at most, and preferably within 3 (builds that are well optimized for mobility are more than capable to accomplish that). Another good metric is one- or two-shotting trash, and killing elite enemies within 10 seconds at most, but preferably within 5.
End the Rift immediately after the Rift Guardian kill. The Rift Guardian is the focal point of the dungeon, your single biggest source of loot and the only monster to drop the precious Greater Rift Keystones (which, outside Death's Breaths, are the only thing of big value inside Regular Rifts). You can make a small exception if the level you end on is very dense on elites (such as the prison, graveyard, highlands tilesets...), but try not to overdo it.
A common tactic for optimized Regular Rift farming groups is to include a "Rift Closer" member. This might be you, depending on your build! The dedicated Rift Closer teleports back to town as soon as the Rift Guardian spawns and runs to Orek (the NPC right next to the Obelisk) in order to close it the moment the RG falls dead. This starts the 30 second countdown until the Rift closure, allowing the Closer to teleport back to teammates that are still next to the dead Guardian (by clicking their banner in town) to loot his own stuff. While this might seem like a minor benefit, well equipped groups will not suffer on the Rift Guardian fight with one member absent, but the immediate 30 second timer adds up valuable time — consider that good groups will cleave through Rifts within 1-2 minutes! Good candidates for Rift Closers are builds that cannot be interrupted when teleporting to town by random projectile shots: Barbarians with Wrath of the Berserker, Crusaders with Akarat's Champion, Demon Hunters with Vengeance, Monks with Epiphany, Wizards with Archon. A careful player can be a Closer on any class however.
If you want to get the maximum loot out of your Regular Rift runs, try stacking a full party of your chosen class. All classes have several builds that handle even the highest Torments efficiently, and there is little demand for the complex multi-class synergies of high end Greater Rifts. As such, you can freely organize a full party of matching characters — or, at the very least, matching mainstats (i.e. Monks with Demon Hunters) — and pool your efforts in giant, loot sharing piles. This tactic is very effective at the start of a Season, when key class-specific drops are still scarce.
Valuable Gear in Regular Rifts
The combination of monster density and them dropping gold upon death in Regular Rifts enables one of the most potent speedfarming combos in the game: the gold triumvirate of Boon of the Hoarder, Avarice Band and Goldwrap:
- Boon of the Hoarder is a legendary gem obtainable from Greed's Domain — the hidden realm of treasure goblins. Every goblin kill outside Rifts has a chance to spawn a portal to that place. You can also open a portal by yourself by using a Puzzle Ring in Kanai's Cube. The legendary gem specifically drops from the realm's end boss, Greed herself. Socketing this gem grants a chance for extra gold drops from killed enemies (up to 100% at its max rank 50), and increases your movement speed by 30% while picking up gold past rank 25. Both the extra gold and the extra movement speed are extremely useful during Regular Rift farming.
- Avarice Band is an Act III cache legendary that increases your Pickup radius as you pick up gold, up to the massive 30 yards. The bonus is granted for a generous 10 second period, allowing for easy maintenance considering the extra Boon of the Hoarder gold.
- The final piece of the trio, Goldwrap, increases your Armor equal to the amount of Gold picked up. With the other two items constantly fueling it, this belt will render you practically invulnerable during Regular Rift farming. In turn, this allows you to position and loot with reckless abandon.
In-geom is a speed farming staple for Cooldown Reduction-heavy builds. This sword cuts downtimes by up to 10 seconds flat, enabling carefree spam of otherwise restrictive cooldowns. Its power is triggered by complete elite kills — meaning all blues in a blue pack, or the yellow Champion and all his Minions in a yellow pack. In general, builds that hinge on ultimate forms or high burst cooldowns equip or (more frequently) cube In-geom's power.
Nemesis Bracers provide you with an extra Champion (yellow) pack at every shrine or pylon pickup. This effect is greatly valued in speed farming, as it essentially shortens runs by providing more density. It pairs nicely with other speed farming staples like In-geom or Sage's set.
The 3-piece power of Sage's Journey set increases Death's Breath drops by 1, making it an attractive inclusion in Regular Rift farming builds. Consisting of Sage's Passage, Sage's Apogee and Sage's Purchase it takes up major armor slots and is most often incorporated with the use of 2 pieces, plus a Ring of Royal Grandeur.
Gloves of Worship are an underrated Act II cache legendary that extends the effect of shrines (but not pylons!) to 10 minutes. Shrines offer multiple bonuses of great value to speedfarming, including extra movement or attack speed, lowered costs and cooldowns, enhanced defense and others. Unfortunately, the Gloves of Worship take up a major armor slot and will require either cubing their power, or including a Ring of Royal Grandeur in your setup.
Ring of Royal Grandeur is an Act I cache legendary that reduces the required number of worn items for set bonus completion by 1. This is not explicitly a speed farming power, but it enables the inclusion of items that usually collide with damage-dealing sets (like Sage's pieces or Gloves of Worship).
If you are not fan of the constant upkeep of Goldwrap and the looming threat of its bonus falling off (usually ending in an unexpected death), another viable option for the belt slot is the Harrington Waistguard. This legendary offers a multiplicative buff that more than doubles your damage after you open a container. Even though the item specifies "chest", the bonus will trigger from any object in the environment that yields loot: weapon racks, debris piles, loose tiles, etc. The duration of the bonus is a generous 10 seconds, easily allowing a speedfarming build to hop from container to container and keep it up.
While it is hard to recommend them over Nemesis Bracers, Warzechian Armguards nevertheless warrant a mention since a good number of speedfarming builds can incorporate them both (one equipped, and the other cubed). Warzechian Armguards provide a substantial movement speed bonus after destroying a breakable object in the environment, a trivial requirement that constantly occurs in high AoE builds.
Adaptation of legendary gems for Regular Rifts does not have to end at Boon of the Hoarder. Gems that benefit from positioning ( Zei's Stone of Vengeance) or prolonged single target fights ( Bane of the Stricken) are often recommended for Greater Rift progression builds, but are unsuitable for Regular Rifts. In their stead, consider options like:
- Bane of the Powerful — this gem offers 20% multiplicative damage increase after killing an elite pack, and a general 15% increase of damage dealt and reduced damage taken from elites. This gem matches perfectly the elite hunting-oriented nature of Regular Rift speedfarming.
- Wreath of Lightning — this gem offers a consistent damage proc that arcs in bolts of lightning outward from the character. Its DPS is negligible in higher difficulties, but adds a 30% movement speed boost while active and its autoaiming bolts also target destructible objects, proccing Warzechian Armguards if used.
Recommended Builds for Regular Rifts
Regular Rift speedfarm favors builds that balance mobility with short term empowerment from legendary effects, due to the high density of monsters to trigger them. The list below is not exhaustive, but provides a good example of a strong rifting build for every class:
- Barbarian: Whirlwind Build;
- Crusader: Bombardment Build;
- Demon Hunter: Impale Build;
- Monk: Lashing Tail Kick Build;
- Necromancer: Blood Mages Build;
- Witch Doctor: Gargantuan Build;
- Wizard: Explosive Blast Build.
- 01 Nov. 2017: Guide added.
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