LoD Frozen Orb Wizard BiS Gear, Gems, and Paragon Points
Below, we detail the items and gems that you should use for your LoD Frozen Orb Wizard in Diablo 3 and why. We also list your paragon points and Kanai's Cube items. Updated for Patch 2.7.3 and Season 26.
Best in Slot Gear and Alternatives
This Frozen Orb Wizard build is based on the Legacy of Dreams power, which offers significant flexibility when it comes to item choice. Stat-wise, focus on pieces where Frozen Orb skill damage is a possible roll — helm, boots and source, as well as spreading Area Damage wherever possible.
The Legacy of Dreams power allows you to run any legendary item combination while not losing out on the damage amplification and reduction associated with the traditional 6-piece sets. You can obtain this power in two ways; the older way is equipping the two rings — The Wailing Host and Litany of the Undaunted — as your only active set bonus. The newer (and more powerful, since it also opens your ring slots for legendary jewelry) method is the Legacy of Dreams legendary gem.
In a setup with Legacy of Dreams, you will be wearing your two best rolled rings and cubing the third between Convention of Elements, Unity, and Halo of Karini. Convention of Elements simply provides a massive damage increase during the Cold cycle of its rotation. Halo of Karini will greatly supplement your defenses, providing a massive damage reduction bonus for the modest requirement of keeping your Storm Armor active. Unity further reduces incoming damage when paired with another on the follower, along with an immortality relic for them (i.e. Enchanting Favor).
Aside from Halo of Karini, Squirt's Necklace will also incentivize you to keep your distance from enemies — it rewards the evasive playstyle of a Frozen Orb Wiz with a massive damage bonus, but also punishes the unwary with an amplification of damage taken. To encase you in at least a measure of protection before you lose that valuable DPS buff, you will be wearing the Ashnagarr's Blood Bracer for the doubled shield potency (consult this build's skills page to see where the shields should come from).
A duo of damage-boosting legendaries will occupy your glove and pants slots. Frostburn are a straightforward elemental damage increase, bumping up your Cold damage with up to 20% and introducing a considerable source of crowd control in the shape of a Freeze proc. Blackthorne's Jousting Mail provide an elemental damage increase, which is fairly unique for the slot — as long as it does not form its set bonus with another Blackthorne item, thus breaking the LoD bonus, this will be your best-in-slot item.
Three more armor slots will be occupied by protective legendary powers, with the combo of Ice Climbers, Aquila Cuirass and Pauldrons of the Skeleton King each bringing their own angle of value to the build. Pauldrons of the Skeleton King offer a free cheat death proc, albeit with an unreliably low proc chance. Aquila Cuirass is simply a defensive cornerstone, cutting incoming damage in half if you maintain above 90% of your resource. Ice Climbers make you immune to Freeze and Immobilize effects, which is not only helpful against certain elites, but also renders you immune to the negative effects of the cubed Stone Gauntlets.
The final two armor pieces will be dedicated to resource management. Your helm of choice should be Pride's Fall, an Act III bounty cache-specific legendary that rewards safe play and not getting hit with significant resource cost reduction. Introduced in Patch 2.4, The Shame of Delsere belt is an Arcane Power regeneration powerhouse that speeds up your signature spells by 50% and restores up to 12 AP per hit. This bonus will be vital in Greater Rift pushes in order to maintain the damage reduction of a worn Aquila Cuirass.
The mandatory weapon of the progression build is the Unstable Scepter, a legendary wand that not only increases Arcane Orb damage, but also has a unique property that detonates Arcane Orbs twice — effectively doubling the spec's damage output. Triumvirate is best-in-slot source for the progression Arcane Orb build, whose unique bonus stacks Frozen Orb damage in three increments, achieved by an easy triple attack from your primary attack.
Reverse Archon Variant
The "Reverse Archon" variant (outlined in its variant paragraph in the skill page) requires several changes to the gear described above. The head slot needs to be occupied by The Swami in order to maintain Archon stacks outside that form, and Fazula's Improbable Chain is required in order to kickstart any Archon stacks at all, since the build revolves around Frozen Orb damage, not Archon (the latter is treated strictly as a buff). Altering to this setup requires perfected cooldown across most of your gear (shoulders, hands, both rings, and off-hand, Flawless Royal Diamond in the helm), as well as Paragons and an Enchantress for the cooldown reduction buff. Missing any of the pieces will land you short of the 61%+ sheet CDR breakpoint.
An extra step further in gear alteration is to drop Aquila Cuirass for Shi Mizu's Haori, which guarantees Critical Hits below 25% life. Since the build runs several shields and is quite tanky in general, it will be able to sustain even at that low health point. This alteration allows you to drop all Critical Hit Chance rolls on gear, and replace them with Intelligence and Area Damage rolls for even more damage.
Desired Stats, Breakpoints and Other Notes
For Offense stats, try to obtain Frozen Orb % bonus on the helm, boots and source (maximum of 45%), Cold elemental damage on the amulet, wrists and pants (maximum of 60%), Crit Chance and Crit Damage within a 1:10 ratio (ideally over 60% and 450%, respectively), and Area Damage of 130%+.
For Defense stats, aim for a life pool of 800k+; dropping as much as you can for offense as you grow accustomed to the build. You will mostly sustain through Life per Hit on gear, with at least one high roll in your setup (i.e. bracer).
All augmentations on gear should be done with your main stat, Intelligence.
Note that the stat suggestions below portray an ideally rolled item with stats listed in relative order of importance. The first four of them are main stats, and the latter two — secondary stats. If your item lacks and is unable to be rerolled into the primary stats outlined below, especially for a stat higher on the list, strongly consider its replacement. Perfecting Secondary stats is mostly a case of hyper-optimization and is not a case for discarding an item, except where noted.
To help you with farming the gear you need for your builds, we have two very useful guides that you can access by clicking the links below: a Salvage Guide to help you quickly check whether or not you can safely salvage a piece of gear and a Legendary Farming Guide to help you efficiently farm legendaries and set items.
In the Core section, max out Movement Speed to the 25% cap. Normally this is done by dumping the first 50 Core Paragon points into Movement Speed, but if your boots have an imperfect roll with Movement Speed as a stat that you cannot replace, adjust the necessary point investment accordingly by simply subtracting your roll from the 25% max. After that dump as much as you comfortably can into Intelligence, but feel free to invest into Vitality if you feel yourself lacking in toughness. Investing into Max Arcane Power is up to personal preference.
In the Offense section, max out Crit Damage, Crit Chance, Cooldown Reduction and Attack Speed in that order. In Defense, prioritize Armor, then Life %, then All Resistance, and finish off with Life Regeneration. In Utility, build up Area Damage and Resource Cost Reduction first, then finish off with Life on Hit and Globe Radius.
Bane of the Trapped is the staple gem of the build; a potent source of additional damage, as it is its own multiplier in your total damage calculation. The gem procs itself with its level 25 property, as well as various other sources of crowd control in the build — i.e., the Frozen Orb slow.
Bane of the Stricken builds up your damage multiplicatively in prolonged fights and has 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. Frozen Orb Wizards are no exception.
Your final slot is best occupied by the Legacy of Dreams legendary gem, which provides a scaling bonus for each legendary item equipped, as long as you have no set bonuses equipped. This bonus is multiplied for Ancient or Primal quality items, and when the gem is maxed out, it matches the Legacy of Nightmares ( The Wailing Host and Litany of the Undaunted rings) set bonus. This potent bonus allows you to play around with all your gear slots for synergistic legendary powers at the cost of a legendary gem slot.
When it comes to gear gems, you will start out progression by slotting the highest available level of Topazes in the chest and pants sockets. Ideally, these will all be Flawless Royal Topazes as soon as possible. As you grow in Paragon (bulking up Intelligence in the Core section) and aim for higher tier and more dangerous GRs, you will transition those gems into the defensive Flawless Royal Ruby, scaling the lacking Armor of an Intelligence-based character (Intelligence scales Resistances). There is no specific breakpoint where you do that; the rule of thumb is to make the change as soon as you feel the lack of toughness impede your progress. Since this build is free of CDR concerns (at least in its non-Reverse Archon, base version — see the paragraphs above), you can pick between Flawless Royal Amethyst for the extra health or Flawless Royal Topaz for the Resource Cost Reduction as befits your needs and playstyle. In your weapon, use a Flawless Royal Emerald for the Crit Damage boost.
|Torso and Pants|
For more information about gems, please refer to our guide on gems.
The revised powers of Wizardspike make it a mandatory inclusion in a Frozen Orb build, albeit tucked away in the Cube. This unassuming dagger now provides both a proc-based chance to hurl an additional Frozen Orb (which does not proc Area Damage, but will benefit from all other damage multipliers), as well as a massive damage multiplier for the skill itself.
Stone Gauntlets are one of the most effective protective pieces in the game, bumping your armor in 50% increments as you get hit, but with a similarly stacking mobility penalty — a downside you will be completely negating with the unique property of Ice Climbers, which make you immune to immobilization effects.
The Kanai's Cube can be used for much more than simply extracting Legendary powers from items. Please refer to our Kanai's Cube guide for more information.
The recommended follower for this build during solo GR progression is the Scoundrel due to his powerful damage and crit buffs: both passive in nature (with Piercing Shot and Anatomy), as well as the brief but battle-turning window of guaranteed crits from Night's Veil.
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.
The preferred potions for this build are Bottomless Potion of Kulle-Aid (allowing you to break down Waller affixes that impede Frozen Orb DPS), Bottomless Potion of the Unfettered (giving you a brief window of CC immunity to counter your lack of CC-breaking or immunity skills), or Bottomless Potion of the Tower (whose Armor-increasing properties complement the naturally high All Resistances stat of Wizards). Pick whichever you feel helps you out the most.
- 14 Apr. 2022: Guide reviewed for Season 26.
- 06 Dec. 2021: Added Season 25 Soul Shard recommendations.
- 30 Oct. 2021: Enriched the guide with additional information.
- 22 Jul. 2021: Added S24 Ethereal recommendation.
- 02 Apr. 2021: Revised gear selection, added follower recommendation.
- 20 Nov. 2020: Guide added.
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