Vyr Archon Wizard Skills and Runes
On this page, we explain how to choose and use your skills when playing Vyr Archon Wizard in Diablo 3. Updated for patch 2.6.9 and Season 21.
|Spectral Blade Barrier Blades Magic Weapon Deflection 1 Archon Slow Time 2 Black Hole Absolute Zero 3 Explosive Blast Chain Reaction 4 Slow Time Time Warp|
The strategy of this build revolves around the in- and out- of Archon dynamic, trying to conserve and increase power as much as you can outside your alternate form and unleashing the built up damage potential during the Archon uptime.
Once you return to regular form, The Swami helm in the Cube will ensure you keep the positive effects of your Archon stacks up to 20 seconds; this enables you to survive and wait out your Archon cooldown. You have another important task in regular form: each of your attacks will increase Chantodo's Resolve set pulse power, stacking up to 20 times — a stack that needs to be maxed out before the next Archon activation. In your normal form, don't forget to activate Magic Weapon Deflection, as well as Storm Armor if you choose to run it. Both feature a 10 minute duration, so they need to be re-applied at least once during a GR attempt. and utility skills ( Teleport, Black Hole — used to manipulate the fight to your advantage).
Skills and Runes
Its presence in the build is pretty self-explanatory, but Archon should be on your skill bar. You have a degree of freedom with your element of choice, as you receive the benefits of all the runes through the Vyr 2-piece set bonus. For the general version of this build that we recommend, we will be using the Cold rune Slow Time, but if you experiment with the Double Element variant, it will be swapped out for Combustion due to its superior burst damage as you enter your Archon form.
In the general, cold-based version of the Archon build you will be using Spectral Blade simply for the protective bubble of Barrier Blades. If you dabble in the multi-element version of the build outlined below, this skill should be swapped into the Flame Blades rune for its element-boosting properties.
Black Hole is an excellent utility inclusion for numerous reasons. First, it brings a monster grouping skill to the setup, which is always welcome prior to entering your burst phase with Archon. Second, the skill ticks add to Chantodo stacks even after you re-enter Archon, making it an efficient pick in-between cycles. And third, you add a nice Cold damage buff that scales with density through the rune Absolute Zero. Note that in the Double Element variation, this rune slot is swapped out into Spellsteal.
Fighting at a closer range than most Wizard builds can afford, the Archon build exposes itself to regular danger; thus, a source of defense and minor damage amplification will be found in Magic Weapon Deflection. This long lasting steroid remains quietly in the background and procs consistently off your Arcane Blasts and Arcane Strikes, bringing a nice damage buffer on top of your health and mitigation.
Rounding skills out, you will be adding Explosive Blast for its potential to trigger a cubed Orb of Infinite Depth, which is a balanced offering of a DPS increase and damage reduction. In order to quickly maximize its benefits, you will be using the rune Chain Reaction; note its additional synergy with Elemental Exposure. Alternatively, and especially at lower Paragons, you can take Storm Armor in this slot. With a fire-and-forget duration of 10 minutes and a negligible damage proc (which still counts for Elemental Exposure!), it can be easily overlooked if not for the massive damage reduction potential of a cubed Halo of Karini.
Notes Double Element Variation
The Double Element version of this build is significantly harder to pull off mechanically, but rewards you with a higher damage potential. The necessary skill alterations are as follows: Spectral Blade switches from Barrier Blades to Flame Blades; Archon switches from Slow Time to Spellsteal; Black Hole switches from Absolute Zero to Spellsteal.
In a Double Element variation of the Archon build, you have 32-second Archon cycles, as dictated by the 16-second cycles of Convention of Elements and the 20-second duration of Archon itself. This allows for an 8-second nuke period upon Archon activation.
The Double Element variation is enabled due to the mechanics of Chantodo's set, which will always pick your highest elemental damage to base its damage off of. This necessitates that you roll one piece (i.e. amulet) with the maximum 20% Lightning elemental damage roll, and the other (i.e. bracer) — with 19% or less Fire elemental damage. This way, by using Spectral Blade Flame Blades you will temporarily boost your Fire elemental damage to a higher point than the Lightning just as you pop Archon form, giving you 4 seconds of Fire Chantodo waves, and then 4 seconds of Lightning Chantodo waves in perfect sync with your Convention of Elements cycles.
Needless to say, this variation playstyle is quite timing sensitive, albeit very powerful. You have to be very aware of your CoE rotation and be very strict with your CDR rolls on gear, as the Double Element variation requires absolutely perfected CDR on nearly all pieces that can attain it (shoulders, hands, both rings, weapon and offhand). Even with all these pieces in place, your Archon downtime will be 31.76 seconds, leaving you less than a second to sync with CoE.
Audacity gets a chance to shine in this dominantly melee range build by bringing an impressive 30% multiplicative damage increase against enemies within 15 yards.
Evocation rounds out the passive choices with its solid chunk of 20% Cooldown Reduction. With the overarching goal of the playstyle to bring your Archon downtime as low as possible, Evocation becomes a natural fit.
You have some flexibility in your final passive slot; you can start out with Unstable Anomaly as you get used to the build, since its cheat death effect saves you from a lethal situation once every 60 seconds. If you are pushing the build to its limits however, we recommend the passive Elemental Exposure as it will bring slightly more damage — with some prerequisites. Notice that the passive bumps damage in 5% increments per element used; you fulfill the arcane with Barrier Blades, the fire with Chain Reaction, and cold with Absolute Zero. The final bump will come from the damage type of your weapon, Chantodo's Will — a lucky roll (or reroll) of the base damage type will bring the last piece of the damage buff (lightning, in this case).
- 01 Jul. 2020: Revised skill selection away from channeling skills and into utility. Added notes on double element version.
- 12 Mar. 2020: Minor revision to passive recommendations.
- 22 Nov. 2019: Added additional skill and passive alteration information for high-end GRs.
- 23 Aug. 2019: Skill recommendations are revised for Season 18.
- 17 May 2019: Guide was revised with additional recommendations for Season 17.
- 18 Jan. 2019: Information was reviewed and approved for Season 16 with no changes required.
- 26 Nov. 2017: Significant revision to skill selection.
- 27 Oct. 2017: Revised skills to reflect its Patch 2.6.1 buffs.
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