Season 20 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.
- S-Tier: Barbarian, Monk
- A-Tier: Demon Hunter, Witch Doctor
- B-Tier: Necromancer
- C-Tier: Wizard, Crusader
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 at the top of S-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 much more efficient rate than any other class.
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.
While the Wave of Light build is excellent for speed farming Nephalem Rifts and bounties, the Patterns of Justice Tempest Rush build is also excellent, and is the better option for greater rift farming. The Tempest Rush build has more power built into the build, while also bringing a high movement speed from the Patterns of Justice set bonus combined with Vengeful Wind.
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. The only reason that Demon Hunter is slightly worse is that Tumble is a slightly worse ability than Dashing Strike, specifically because it is not a teleport. That alone would not be enough to drop DH from S-Tier, but Demon Hunters just do not have the same efficacy in Greater Rifts that Monks and Barbarians do. All of the Demon Hunter builds, including Multishot, are lacking comparatively in power to Barbarian and Monk, forcing you to farm lower Greater Rift levels if you want to achieve similar speeds.
Vyr's Archon brings the power that you need for Greater Rift farming early on, but falls short in speed compared to the other classes above. Specifically, Wizards are slightly limited by the cooldown reliance of the Archon build, namely when you need to generate Chantodo stacks before re-entering Archon form again. This build is still very solid once it gets going, but does have a ramp time along with patches of downtime. Wizards get put in the C-Tier because of the 1-second cooldown teleport that you get in Archon form, and the relatively high ramp time compared to the classes in the tiers above. The best speed farming builds are continuously getting better and better, but Wizard's ability to speed farm has been stagnant for some time, and is not seeing anything new this patch.
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>
With the new seasonal buff, Necromancers have access to their new Death Nova speed farming build that makes great use of the various high powered weapons available to Necromancer. This will be a powerful build early on once you get the items, and while it will not be as fast as some builds, brings a ton of power early on along with Necromancer's mobility spell Blood Rush, which is arguably one of the better mobility spells in the game. The Necromancer is relatively middle of the pack when it comes to speed clears while solo, but the group experience meta is where Necromancer really excels. All of these combine to put the Necromancer solidly in B-Tier.
With the new patch, Witch Doctor got the new Mundunugu's Regalia set. This set has proven to be not only one of the strongest solo builds in the game, but also one of the fastest. While Witch Doctors lack a powerful teleport like monks, the damage pattern of the Spirit Barrage build is perfect for speed farming, with your phantasms 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 would easily be in S-Tier, but the lack of a teleport keeps them in A-Tier.
- 09 Mar. 2020: Updated for Season 20.
- 01 Dec. 2019: Page added.
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