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Necessary to follow a build guide?

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ive been playing diablo since the original, and ive found that once you get max lvl each char has a select number of builds that are considered the most powerful/godly/elite, so almost everybody follows one of them for whichever char theyre making. but i like to think outside the box.

basically my question is: if you decide to create your own build the way you like it, and not follow a step by step item by item build guide, is it still possible to create a character that can speedrun high lvl GRs/do all the other type of stuff that the "popular" top-tier builds are made for? or is it like anything other than the widely accepted top-tier builds for each class will be pretty much useless at legendary farming/speedrun GRs/etc


feel free to add me, im on PS4 and could use some help now that i got 3 chars at lvl 70 and dont really know what to do next. also, i cannot find kanais cube for the life of me lol. im on pacific time.


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Hi Vile Supremacy,

It depends on how competitive you want to be. Do you want to try for the leaderboards? That's not going to happen outside of the builds, pretty much.

Do you just want to play the end game and see how far you can get? That's definitely doable.

Assuming you're not a complete idiot using skills and items that totally don't work together, you should certainly be able to create your own variation that can get up to Torment X or XIII. getting to TXVI is harder, but possible depending on the quality of your gear and your skill.

Now, the thing is that most builds rely on a specific set. Most sets require you to use a number of specific skills or skill types (a set that gives +30.000% damage to Bone Spear kind of means you'll be using Bone Spear. I mean, otherwise, refer back to the "assume you're not an idiot" bit up above :-P), and the builds represented for that set will use the most efficient way to further increase/stack multipliers, finding a good balance between additive and multiplicative, balance between attack and defense..... There are sometimes two or three completely different builds possible with one set, depending on your preferred play style. 

If you start looking at multiple builds, you'll see a lot of things come back time and again. Some because they're absolute corner stones of the class, others because they're just "the most efficient way" of doing things. The Convention of Elements is included in nearly every build for every class, because it's a completely separate +200% bonus damage (so combining with that set from before with +30.000% doesn't result in +30.200% but in +90.000%). It's practically mandatory for any build if you want to achieve absolute peak performance. On the other hand, a lot of players (myself included) really don't like playing with it, since it means you've got to be very precise with your rotation and timing of your skills. I'd rather do half the damage whenever I want to than spend my time babysitting the bar to activate skill 1 at exactly this point in the cycle to then activate skills 2 and 3 just before that point in the cycle so that you can finally unleash skill 4 at the peak of your damage type for absolute destruction. I accept that I'll never get the very highest GR clear, and just move on.

I would definitely suggest looking through the builds here for the class or type you like best, not to copy them, but to get good ideas. "Ohh, item X cancels out the negative of item Y, they're a great combo! Neat" or "wait, that bonus applies to that skill, too? I'd never have guessed!" (the rules for what is, or isn't, a "pet" or a "summon" is a bit weird sometimes, for example).

I've made completely personally-built characters in previous seasons where I simply couldn't get specific items to drop for me, based on the items I did have, and managed to finish the Season Journey just fine (For an easy overview, go to  https://d3resource.com/journey/index.php ). 


For Kanai's Cube, check out https://www.icy-veins.com/d3/kanais-cube-guide this handy guide 🙂



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