Shadow/Marauder FoK Demon Hunter Skills and Runes
On this page, we explain how to choose and use your skills when playing Shadow/Marauder FoK Demon Hunter in Diablo 3. Updated for Patch 2.6.10 and Season 22.
|Bolas Freezing Strike Fan of Knives Pinpoint Accuracy 1 Vengeance Dark Heart 2 Smoke Screen Vanishing Powder 3 Companion Wolf Companion 4 Marked for Death Valley of Death
In Greater Rifts, the build incorporates a split between the Shadow and Marauder sets for an incredibly tanky, timed burst playstyle. For the entirety of the rift (with the exception of the Rift Guardian fight), you will be focusing on aggroing monsters by walking near them, drawing them into a large group and activating a devastating Fan of Knives with fully capped Sharpshooter, Endless Walk set at its 100% damage bonus and a 30-stack Lord Greenstone's Fan, all during a Lightning proc of Convention of Elements and within an area targeted by Marked for Death Valley of Death. The combined power of these effects is guaranteed to significantly chunk — if not outright kill — nearby enemies even in high Greater Rifts. The progression spec takes a generator in the face of Bolas Freezing Strike, but only uses it against the Rift Guardian as a tool to build up Bane of the Stricken stacks. Vengeance is cast as soon as it comes off cooldown, and Wolf Companion gets applied before a Fan of Knives burst.
Skills and Runes
Fan of Knives is the primary damage dealer of the build, taken with the strongest rune Pinpoint Accuracy — sitting at the impressive 1600% damage. The increased cooldown of the rune is of little consequence, as in Greater Rifts you will be waiting on the stacks of Lord Greenstone's Fan, (building up at 1 stack per second) and synchronize with the Lightning proc of Convention of Elements (see this build's gear page for more information). You will reach 15-19 stacks for one full cycle of CoE and the full 30 stacks at two cycles. Considering its significant buildup time and burst potential, judicious use of Fan of Knives in GRs is strongly advised.
In high Greater Rifts, an unobtrusive generator will be taken as means of stacking Bane of the Stricken — the gem that assists in taking down the Rift Guardian. You will be avoiding its use all the way to the Guardian, and even then only use it in the beginning of the fight to build up gem stacks. The preferred generator for the role is Bolas, due to its speedy triple shot. Rune-wise, you can either take the hard CC utility of the Freezing Strike rune, or replenish your discipline reserves with Bitter Pill.
Both build variations adopt a protective mobility skill. In Greater Rifts, you will be taking the disappearance mechanic of Smoke Screen; this is due to the fact that Vaulting during an active Vengeance will cause the latter to shoot, resetting the Sharpshooter build up prematurely. The preferred rune is Vanishing Powder, which limits the use of the skill to emergencies, but also nullifies its cost; other options like Special Recipe and Healing Vapors are also considered viable.
Using the skill and item reworks surrounding Vengeance to their advantage, Shadow Hybrid Demon Hunters take the skill into the build and strive for its permanent uptime in GRs through a cubed Dawn, and in speedruns — through CDR stacking and In-geom. This potent 40% damage buff will also reduce incoming damage in half from the Dark Heart rune, assisting the survival of this close-range DH setup.
The Shadow Hybrid Demon Hunter takes full advantage of the Companion skill in Greater Rifts, where the mixture with 2-piece Marauder set puts all the companions at your side. The active pop nets you the Bat Companion Hatred regeneration, the Spider Companion slow, the Boar Companion taunt, the Ferret Companion health globe grab and the Wolf Companion multiplicative damage increase.
In the setup for Greater Rifts, more powerful individual legendaries will occupy slots necessary to complete the Shadow set 4-piece bonus, making the seemingly attractive Shadow Power bonuses unobtainable. Thus, your final slot in progression will be taken by Marked for Death Valley of Death, whose 15% additive damage increase in a targeted area synergizes nicely with Fan of Knives.
This concludes the overview of the Active Skills, now let us look through the Passives.
Ambush complements the burst-oriented nature of the build, frontloading your damage potential against newly encountered enemies. The multiplicative nature of the passive sweetens the 40% damage increase offered, and leads to the enormous burst potential of the Shadow Hybrid DH.
Cull the Weak amplifies your damage against Slowed or Chilled enemies by 20%. This potent multiplicative passive gets triggered by Bane of the Trapped due to the gem's slowing property in melee range, where all your burst comes in anyway (diving into enemies to use Fan of Knives).
Sharpshooter is a cornerstone passive of this build in Greater Rifts, and the reason to eschew any Crit Chance on your gear for progression. Building up at 4% Crit Chance per second, this passive caps 5 seconds before Lord Greenstone's Fan does (incidentally, opening a 5 second window after each Fan of Knives to shoot your generator and build up Bane of the Stricken stacks with). The synergy between this passive and the dagger defines the playstyle of the build that spends a lot of time gathering aggro, building up a fight, and then releasing a massive volley of damage. Sadly, it is also held back by some long standing bugs — it will occasionally be reset by Companions (remedied by switching the rune), and is inexplicably reset by your follower (forcing you to gear your follower with 0 Crit Chance).
You have a degree of freedom in your last passive slot for Greater Rifts; the general recommendation for Softcore is Numbing Traps, which reduces the damage potential of enemies by a quarter. Similarly to Cull the Weak, you will be taking advantage of the Bane of the Trapped slowing property in melee range. In hardcore, you will be understandably reluctant to part with the cheat death passive, Awareness. On a decent 60-second cooldown, it will spare you the death screen, and is coupled with a brief window of safety and life regeneration when triggered.
- 18 Nov. 2020: No changes required for Season 22.
- 30 Jun. 2020: No changes required for Seasons 20 and 21.
- 21 Nov. 2019: Reviewed for Season 19.
- 23 Aug. 2019: Reviewed for Season 18.
- 16 May 2019: Guide was reviewed and approved for Season 17.
- 17 Jan. 2019: Information was reviewed and approved for Season 16 with no changes required.
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