Season 19 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
- B-Tier: Wizard, Crusader
- C-Tier: Necromancer, Witch Doctor
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 at the top of B-Tier however because of the 1-second cooldown teleport that you get in Archon form, combined with the inherent power that the build brings, which allows you to tackle higher Greater Rift levels earlier on.
Crusaders have the strongest build 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./p>
Necromancers are an incredibly cooldown reliant class that lacks the ability to speed farm while solo for the most part. The Corpse Lance Pestilence build is one exception while using the speed farming variant, which utilizes several cooldown reduction items like Obsidian Ring of the Zodiac to allow you to keep Land of the Dead up nearly 100% of the time. This in turn allows you to spam Corpse Lance constantly, which is where all of your damage comes from. This build is decent in low to mid tier rifts, and is able to at least be competitive in speed farming, which is a noticeable step up from most other Necromancer builds.
Witch Doctors fall behind in both speed and power, which places them squarely in the bottom of C-Tier. The Carnevil Dagger of Darts build is going to be your best bet, since it is one of the few Witch Doctor builds that has the necessary power for T16 farming early on, but sadly it lacks the speed and efficiency that other classes bring. Spirit Walk is not quite as good of a mobility spell, and Witch Doctors lack the efficient AoE that most other classes can bring in their speed builds. Simply put, if speed farming is your goal, there are many better choices than Witch Doctor.
- 01 Dec. 2019: Page added.
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