LoD Carnevil DoD Witch Doctor Skills and Runes
On this page, we explain how to choose and use your skills when playing LoD Carnevil DoD Witch Doctor in Diablo 3. Updated for Patch 2.7.6 and Season 29.
|Poison Dart Spined Dart Piranhas Piranhado 1 Big Bad Voodoo Slam Dance 2 Spirit Walk Severance 3 Soul Harvest Languish 4 Horrify Frightening Aspect|
The first task of the Carnevil Witch Doctor is to summon all the Fetishes he can muster at his side through attacks, their numbers quickly swelling via the Fetish Sycophants passive. Once you spot an enemy-dense area, get control over the monsters with Piranhas Piranhado, close the distance to them and feast on their numbers with the Soul Harvest and Horrify buffs. Then, you can begin the Poison Dart onslaught. When endangered, take advantage of the temporary invulnerability from Spirit Walk and either reposition, or disengage from an unfavorable fight.
In an ideal situation, you will also have Big Bad Voodoo off cooldown and ready to be popped for a considerable damage burst. Your situational awareness is of the highest priority here, as you should try to both 1) move into an Oculus Ring buff once it spawns from killing a lower HP enemy, and 2) safeguard your Squirt's Necklace damage bonus to the best of your ability by dodging with Spirit Walk and generally avoiding enemy projectiles. Whatever the situation is, try to actively shoot Poison Dart whenever the Poison cycle of Convention of Elements is up, since this will be your burst period.
Skills and Runes
Your main damage dealer is found in Poison Dart, a primary skill supported by two powerful legendary items, Carnevil and The Dagger of Darts, and a dedicated legendary gem — Simplicity's Strength. While its potential is already considerable with those items in mind, it gains an extra multiplicative damage increase from Depth Diggers. Though it no longer requires the use of a Mana-generating attack and works with any primary, there is still value in using the traditional Spined Dart rune — this way you always have resources for Aquila Cuirass upkeep despite the Mana cost increase from Pierce the Veil. Still, you can consider altering to other runes entirely; just keep utility in mind, since it will be your Fetishes' darts that deal the actual damage of the build.
A mobility and all-round safety mainstay in the Witch Doctor arsenal, Spirit Walk finds its place in yet another build. Its moderate cooldown is compensated by its versatility: it renders you invulnerable, removes enemy collision, and increases your movement speed by 100% via the rune Severance.
One of the strongest utility cooldowns of Witch Doctors, Soul Harvest is almost universally a great addition — but especially in builds that take advantage of Sacred Harvester, doubling the number of possible stacks. Soul Harvest acts as a damage buff by default, increasing your Intelligence by up to 30% for the reasonable requirement of 10 harvested enemies. With the Languish rune and the worn Lakumba's Ornament bracers, it nets you additional crowd control and reduces incoming damage in half, solidifying its place in this mid-range playstyle. The naturally overlapping duration simply sweetens the deal.
Ever since the Area Damage mechanics revision that enabled it for pets, enemy grouping skills grew tremendously in value. Witch Doctors' take on that type of utility is found in the Piranhas skill, using the vortex effect of the Piranhado rune.
Completing the build with defensive utility, the Horrify crowd control helps when the tough enemies of Greater Rift progression survive your Poison Dart onslaught and swarm you, thirsting for vengeance. The recommended choice for GR progression is the Toughness-oriented Frightening Aspect, buffed to the impressive 50% additional armor for 8 seconds.
When it comes to additional buffs, you have some options to consider. For very high-end pushing, Big Bad Voodoo will provide not only a massive and relatively long lasting attack speed buff, but also a straight damage bump with the rune Slam Dance. The downside, of course, is its equally impressive downtime, forcing you to use it in key engagements and really plan ahead when it comes to its use. Another option for the slot are the Summon Zombie Dogs minions, which can be coupled with Leeching Beasts rune and Uhkapian Serpent mojo for a considerable layer of defense and sustain for the build.
Fetish Sycophants is a signature passive of the build, spawning additional Fetishes as you naturally go through your rotations. Capping at an impressive 15, this ability solidifies the meat shield in front of you and significantly increases your damage output.
Confidence Ritual is another straightforward addition, increasing your damage by 25% against enemies within 20 yards — arguably a dangerous bonus to keep up, but relatively easier to maintain due to your mid-range playstyle. If you feel you are too glassy with this Passive lineup, you should alter this slot to the cheat death failsafe of Spirit Vessel.
A well-rounded DPS increase for Greater Rifting, Pierce the Veil provides a guaranteed 20% additive damage bonus at the cost of a 30% increase in Mana costs. The drawback is hardly noticeable in this build, as it is mostly primary- and cooldown-centric and the solitary spender is cheap and effective.
Among the most dynamic and interesting passives in the game, Grave Injustice is a Cooldown Reduction engine that fuels the damage output and survivability of the build. It delivers a neat package of CDR, health and Mana regeneration upon killing an enemy within a starting radius of 20 yards, extendable by Pickup Radius on gear (see this build's gear page for more information).
- 13 Sep. 2023: Skills and passives reviewed for Season 29.
- 22 Feb. 2023: Skills and passives reviewed for Season 28.
- 26 Aug. 2022: Skills and passives reviewed for Season 27.
- 14 Apr. 2022: Guide reviewed for Season 26.
- 06 Dec. 2021: Revised skill recommendations.
- 22 Jul. 2021: No changes required for Season 24.
- 01 Apr. 2021: No changes required for Season 23.
- 19 Nov. 2020: No changes required for Season 22.
- 01 Jul. 2020: No changes required for Season 21.
- 12 Mar. 2020: Minor clarifications added.
- 22 Nov. 2019: Reviewed for Season 19.
- 23 Aug. 2019: Skill recommendations are revised for Season 18.
- 17 May 2019: Guide added.
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