Support Monk BiS Gear, Gems, and Paragon Points
Below, we detail the items and gems that you should use for your Support Monk in Diablo 3 and why. We also list your paragon points and Kanai's Cube items. Updated for Patch 2.7.7 and Season 30.
Best in Slot Gear and Alternatives
In a typical support build fashion, the healing Monk adopts a mixture of sets and utility legendaries to maximize Toughness, cooldown and resource management. Your stat goals for items across the board are high Cooldown Reduction and Attack Speed, along with a Health Globe Healing Bonus on all the items able to roll the stat (Chest, Shoulders, Boots, Amulet, Rings) to benefit your Epiphany Soothing Mist (see this build's skills page for more information). The base recommended set to include is Inna's Mantra, up to its group support-oriented 4 piece bonus. Due to other slots being taken by important legendary and set items, the necessary Inna pieces to take are Inna's Vast Expanse, Inna's Radiance and Inna's Hold. Along with a Ring of Royal Grandeur, this will produce the valuable 2- and 4- piece bonuses of the Inna's Mantra set. The benefits of the doubled effectiveness of your chosen Mantra, along with the free base effect of all four Mantras makes the Inna set a staple for the support Monk.
You will be mixing the Inna's set with two smaller sets, both of which can be crafted; Captain Crimson's Trimmings and Born's Command. Both are utility-oriented sets that contribute nicely to a support build. From the Captain Crimson's Trimmings set, you will be adding Captain Crimson's Silk Girdle and Captain Crimson's Thrust. This set provides CDR as well as RCR bonuses and scales your damage reduction according to RCR. Less important, but still fitting nicely in the setup is the Born's Command set, with the Born's Privilege and Born's Furious Wrath pieces. This little combo nets you Life %, Cooldown Reduction and even some extra experience on top — useful during Paragon farming. With your main hand taken by the Born sword, pair it with a nice tanky, support-oriented finish in the face of Stormshield — one of the bulkiest pieces in the game, offering massive melee damage reduction as an innate roll.
Naturally, to tie all three sets together, you will need a Ring of Royal Grandeur — a cache legendary ring from Act I bounties. In your remaining slot, you can take the revamped Oculus Ring — it now provides up to the impressive 85% multiplicative damage buff in a circular area for your DPS party members to stand in. While its wording is vague, it does trigger off assists, and will thus work on support characters.
To complete the jewelry, initially it is recommended to obtain an immunity amulet for a highly lethal source of elemental damage. Xephirian Amulet, which renders you immune to lightning, or The Star of Azkaranth against fire, are highly desirable options during lower Paragons, when your survival still is not cemented. Once your character develops, you should move onto The Flavor of Time for its unique effect, which doubles the duration of Pylons.
Illusory Boots are a crucial piece for the mobility of the build, allowing you to ignore collision and pass freely through enemies — an indispensable freedom in a build lacking Dashing Strike. These boots are farmed through Act II bounty caches, and are relatively easy to obtain with a good roll due to their fixed stats and no-range affix. Stat-wise, aim strictly for Toughness and mind the ability to roll Health Globe Healing Bonus in the secondary stats.
Two bracers — Strongarm Bracers and Spirit Guards — can be considered as best-in-slot for the build. The Piercing Trident effect counts as a knock up for the purposes of the legendary affix of Strongarm Bracers, and its damage bonuses will affect the entire group. On the other hand, Spirit Guards multiply your damage reduction by 40% for 3 seconds after using a Spirit Generator — functionally a permanent bonus for this primary-spamming build. In reality, you will not have to choose between those bracers, as you can wear your better rolled of the two and simply Cube the other.
A Note on Pushing with Witch Doctors
The Support Monk is also a necessary addition to a Witch Doctor-based pushing setup, and some slight alterations to the basic setup will be necessary to properly cater to the needs of your DPS teammate.
Most importantly, you will be dropping the Born's Command set from the base setup, taking out the Born's Privilege and Born's Furious Wrath pieces. In their place, you will be adding 2 pieces of the Uliana's Stratagem set: Uliana's Strength, plus one more of your choosing. This is strictly done to gain the free Exploding Palm effect for every third hit of your generator; since this skill counts as a Bleed effect, it will trigger the Pain Enhancer gem worn by your Witch Doctor DPS teammate, to the tremendous benefit of his DPS.
To put this into practice, a sample gearing split would be to wear Uliana's Strength and Uliana's Spirit for the 2-piece Uliana bonus, Inna's Hold, Inna's Vast Expanse and Inna's Favor for the Inna 4-piece bonus, and Captain Crimson's Thrust and Captain Crimson's Waders for the Cpt. Crimson 3-piece bonus (remember the worn RoRG).
This will necessitate that you cube the Illusory Boots. Your freed up main hand slot should be taken up by Pig Sticker, with a trifecta of support-appropriate stats: Attack Speed, Cooldown- and Resource Cost Reduction.
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.
Altar of Rites
The former Season 28 theme, the Altar of Rites, has been revised and re-added to Diablo 3 as a permanent character progression mechanic. — For virtually all builds and players of all skill levels — from casual to advanced — we recommend progressing through the Altar tree using the path outlined below. The suggested path is geared towards maximum quality of life first, then amplifying damage, and then mopping up the tree with defensive and edge case utility nodes.
Note that while they require reaching them with a Seal, Legendary Potion Powers are not part of the Seal cost system; Potions unlock with a separate resource called Primordial Ashes, obtained from salvaging Legendary or Set items of Primal (red bordered) quality. Upgrade them as soon as possible, and in the order shown below (courtesy of Caleko's Altar of Rites planner).
You can read more on the Altar of Rites, Seals and Legendary Potion Powers in our dedicated Altar of Rites Mechanics guide.
Iceblink serves a twofold purpose: first, it adds a potent, scaling slow effect to the short freeze of Tsunami; and second, it offers a reliable source of 10% additional party-wide Crit Chance through its level 25 property.
Gogok of Swiftness synergizes well with the build, indirectly providing the entire party with more survivability by increasing your essential Cooldown Reduction, as well as substantial personal Toughness from the Dodge bonuses.
The recommended gem for your third and final jewelry slot is Gem of Efficacious Toxin, for the party-wide damage increase against — and reduced damage from — enemies affected by its poisonous DoT.
Season 30 Soul Shards
In Season 30, your helm and weapon sockets will be taken over by the supremely powerful Soul Shards. For this variant, we recommend the following:
- Helm — Fragment of Destruction with "You now leave a trail of fire in your wake that slays enemies with the Mark of Destruction that are below 10% health" as its Rank 3 power. For optimization benefits, aim for Vitality or Melee/Ranged Damage Reduction on its Rank 2 roll.
- Weapon — Essence of Anguish with "When you deal Poison damage to an enemy, they receive 50% increased Poison damage from all sources for 10 seconds" as its Rank 3 power. For optimization benefits, aim for Attack Speed Increase on its Rank 2 roll. Note that Essence of Anguish requires dealing Poison damage to trigger its Base Power; in this build, you accomplish this either by re-rolling the weapon damage range (the two numbers displayed just under the big total DPS number; the first Primary stat roll of any weapon) of your own weapon to Poison, or doing the same to your follower's weapon. Alternatively, if Essence of Anguish is already present on another Support (they don't stack), you should use Remnant of Pain with an Attack Speed level 3 roll.
|Torso and Pants
For more information about gems, please refer to our guide on gems.
Cubing The Executioner provides a valuable culling effect for monsters that your group is fighting, killing targeted enemies below 10% health outright. Another option for the slot is Flying Dragon, which provides you with one of the strongest weapon procs in the game: a chance to double your attack speed with a separate multiplier. You can also cube the unusual Ahavarion, Spear of Lycander, which grants helpful Shrine effects to the group even in Greater Rifts; note however that it is dependent on monster composition inside the rift, and its positives might not always be available.
In the jewelry slot you will use The Star of Azkaranth, in order to make yourself to a highly lethal source of elemental damage — fire — and turn it into a source of healing instead.
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.
As a support, you will gain additional utility from being able to break down walls with the Bottomless Potion of Kulle-Aid.
- 08 Jan. 2024: Revised guide for the permanent addition of the Altar of Rites, and added Season-specific Soul Shard recommendations.
- 13 Sep. 2023: Added Season 29 Paragon Cap and Gearing recommendations.
- 22 Feb. 2023: Added Season 28 Altar of Rites recommendations.
- 26 Aug. 2022: Added Season 27 Angelic Crucible recommendations.
- 14 Apr. 2022: Guide reviewed for Season 26.
- 08 Dec. 2021: Guide revised and added Season 25 Soul Shard recommendations.
- 21 Jul. 2021: Added Ethereal weapon recommendation for Season 24.
- 01 Apr. 2021: No changes required for Season 23.
- 08 Dec. 2020: Revised S22 Cube recommendation.
- 16 Nov. 2020: Added S22 Cube recommendation.
- 01 Jul. 2020: No changes required for Season 21.
- 12 Mar. 2020: Added gear recommendations when pushing with Witch Doctors.
- 04 Jan. 2020: Small fix to the Cube recommendations.
- 21 Nov. 2019: Guide revised to include Cpt. Crimson and Born sets.
- 23 Aug. 2019: Item recommendations revised for Season 18.
- 16 May 2019: Guide was reviewed and approved for Season 17.
- 17 Jan. 2019: Added suggestions for the baseline Ring of Royal Grandeur for Seasonal characters.
- 26 Nov. 2017: Removed Uliana recommendations and replaced them with an optional Uliana setup.
- 28 Oct. 2017: Added 2 Uliana pieces.
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