Season 23 Tier List: Speed Running Build Rankings
What is Speed Farming?
Once you get to a certain point in your build, upgrades become less and less frequent. You will quickly reach a point where random upgrades are no longer likely, and you will need to target upgrades by spending materials and resources to craft or re-roll items. To get these resources, you will need to farm them either through Bounties, Greater Rifts, or Nephalem Rifts. When you are clearing hundreds or even thousands of rifts, efficiency and speed can make a huge difference. Speed farming is when you try to use the most optimal builds designed to clear quickly, with minimal to no downtime. Some builds might be quite powerful in pushing Greater Rifts, but rely on infrequent cooldowns that make them terrible for speed farming when your goal is to clear rifts in 2 minutes, not 15 minutes.
There are three main activities that utilize speed farming: T16 Nephalem Rifts for Greater Rift keys and crafting materials, Greater Rifts for gem levels and Paragon experience, and bounties for the materials needed to re-roll items in Kanai's Cube. The tier list below reflects each class' ability to do all three on average.
Greater Rift XP Farming - Solo Speed Rankings
- S-Tier: Wizard
- A-Tier: Necromancer, Crusader
- B-Tier: Monk, Barbarian
- C-Tier: Demon Hunter, Witch Doctor
Greater Rift XP Farming - Group Speed Rankings
- S-Tier: Wizard, Necromancer
- A-Tier: Barbarian, Demon Hunter
- B-Tier: Crusader, Monk
- C-Tier: Witch Doctor
T16 Nephalem Rift Speed Rankings
- S-Tier: Monk, Demon Hunter
- A-Tier: Necromancer, Barbarian
- B-Tier: Wizard
- C-Tier: Witch Doctor, Crusader
Bounty Farming Speed Rankings
- S-Tier: Monk
- A-Tier: Demon Hunter, Necromancer
- B-Tier: Wizard, Barbarian
- C-Tier: Witch Doctor, Crusader
Necromancers will have no shortage of viable speed farming builds in Season 23, but the Singularity Mage Necromancer will still prove to be the dominant build early in the season, specifically in group runs called "Rat Runs". Regardless of whether you choose to play this or the Masquerade of the Burning Carnival set with Bone Spear, you will be able to fly through early GR levels and T16 with ease. The real reason that Necromancer is now at the top of the S-tier however is because of the Bone Spear Masquerade build. This build is utterly dominating the meta both early and late, allowing groups and solo players to farm GRs at levels other players might be struggling to push to. Their raw power combined with their speed in coordinated groups is what makes them the best. It is important to note however that Necrolords lose a significant amount of their speed clearing potential outside of groups - for solo-play, they are no longer S-tier for speed farming.
The Unhallowed Essence Multishot build makes Demon Hunters almost equal to Monks for speed farming Nephalem Rifts and bounties. Multishot has the same damage pattern as Wave of Light in that it clears your screen of enemies, making it perfect for low difficulty speed farming content. In Season 21, Demon Hunters also gained access to a new set, which has created the GoD Hungering Arrow build, that has dominated the leader-boards. This build plays like a Whirlwind Barbarian for insane clear speeds, while also having one of the fastest base movement speeds out of any build in the game. Demon Hunters are still going to be a dominant force in the speed farming meta in Season 23 thanks to this build, putting them solidly in the S-tier.
Firebirds received a major rework in Season 23 (see Patch 2.7), which has brought it to the forefront of the Wizard meta. The built in cooldown reduction on teleport, the animation changes to teleport, the inherent 80% damage reduction, and the massive damage it brings are the important aspects of the new set that make it exceptional for both t16 and GR farming. This build will be competing in the S-tier for GR xp farming, but Wizard is still a bit lacking for t16 mat farming, which is what keeps Wizard in the A-tier. This is a tanky, self-sufficient, fast build that can see you through every part of the game with ease.
With the addition of the new Barbarian items in Patch 2.6.7, the Rend Barbarian build has become one of the strongest solo-pushing builds in the game. Not only is the build extremely powerful, but it also brings the speed to match. This build is often referenced as "Spin to Win," and for good reason. While keeping up buffs and channeling one ability, you can efficiently and effectively clear any content that you do while moving extremely fast, with no need to ever wait or stop for anything.
While this build is still very strong for bounties and Nephalem Rifts, the real reason that Barbarian sits in the A-Tier is the power that this build brings for Greater Rifts. You can retain 90% of the power that the normal pushing build brings while greatly ramping up your speed, allowing you to speed farm high Greater Rifts for experience, gear, and gem levels at a very efficient rate. This build alone previously had Barbarian in the S-tier, but this build now lacks the raw power that other classes bring with newer builds, pushing it down into the A-tier.
While not quite as effective as Barbarians at speed farming high Greater Rifts early on, Monks make up for it by bringing arguably the single best build in the game for Nephalem Rifts and bounties: the Wave of Light build. Both the LoD and Sunwuko variants of Wave of Light allow you to quickly teleport around any map, using Wave of Light to clear you screen of enemies without giving a second though. The WoL build specifically has what we would call a perfect damage pattern; Wave of Light has a long enough range that you can kill enemies off screen before even seeing them. This long range damage allows the gear and materials to drop off enemies before you reach them, cutting out the animation time between when enemies die and their loot drops. Not only do Monks have the best damage type for speed clearing this type of content, but they also have the perfect mobility tool. Dashing Strike is the single greatest mobility skill in the game due to its almost non existent animation and the fact that it is a teleport, which allows you to go over walls and ledges, thus making rifts that much faster.
With the rise of the new Demon Hunter speed farming and XP meta that emerged in Season 21, Monks have been dropped a couple of tiers however due to the lack of power in their main Greater Rift speed farming builds compared to that of other classes. While Monks are not weak or slow by any means, they do not bring the insane clear speed and early power spikes that the classes above have. You may be able to clear t16 with ease, but you will have a slower start in early GRs.
Witch Doctor's Mundunugu's Regalia set has proven to be a strong solo build, but lacks both the speed and strength that the classes above bring to the table. Witch Doctors lack a powerful teleport like monks, but the damage pattern of the Spirit Barrage build is strong for speed farming, with your Manitou rune from Spirit Barrage constantly killing any enemies close by. This allows you quickly run around the map, killing anything you walk by. If Witch Doctors had a better mobility spell, they might be higher, but the lack of a strong mobility spell and their current status as the weakest overall class puts them in the C-tier.
Crusaders have one of the strongest builds in the game for power, but are one of the slowest classes. Steed Charge is arguably the worst mobility spell out of any class, which makes Crusaders inherently slow compared to other classes. This build does make up for that lack of speed with raw power, and while it does fall below most classes when it comes to bounties, it makes up for it by being better at Greater Rift farming early on. Sadly with the nerfs to Aegis of Valor this patch, that relative power difference just is not there anymore, and Crusader is at the bottom of the C-Tier for speed./p>
- 29 Mar. 2021: Updated for Season 23.
- 17 Nov. 2020: Updated for Season 22.
- 29 Jun. 2020: Updated for Season 21.
- 09 Mar. 2020: Updated for Season 20.
- 01 Dec. 2019: Page added.
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