| Crushplosive Assassin
The Explosive Archer
Introduction: Having read the 10 best/worst uniques
decahedron a while ago, I was intrigued by the feedback
of the demon machine. I had been trying to make an archer
hybrid for all the character classes, and the hard part
was making it so it was viable (i.e. actually able to
kill at a decent pace in hell). I had been experimenting
with the buriza for all my archer variants, but found
it waaay too slow, especially since I didnt have
any AoE (area of effect) like multishot on a zon. That
is something that most rangers (in truth, they should
be called snipers, since they only take out one target
at a time) have a problem with. Enter the feedback from
Decahedron #10. In it a person wrote in defending the
demon machine, and saying that there was a sub-build
of necros called Blowmancers. I took that
idea, and since there was no strategy guide for it on
the compendium, I finally decided to write one. This
will detail the items needed for any character class
that u play it with, and a basic strategy for each.
Keep in mind though, this is only based on PvM play.
I recently dueled a legit Goldstrike Ranger paladin,
and I could only get him to about 50% life with most
of my characters. Odd how you can kill hell cows, but
not another character. I dont have much PvP experience
though. Since he leached life and mana, and I didnt,
thats probably why.
Abbreviations Ill be using:
IAS-Increased attack speed
AoE-Area of effect
FaF-Fire and Forget
Items: There are a few basic absolutely necessary items
you need. Luckily, they are all cheap and easy to trade
for on the realms. Im listing the modifications
on the items that are necessary for this build.
Armor Rattlecage. 25% chance of crushing blow,
40% chance of monster flee. Only 70 Strength required.
Socket with a plain 15 IAS jewel, or one with elemental
Boots Goblin Toe. 25% chance of crush blow.
Not much else, but between the boots and armor, this
makes up 95% of your damage.
Belt Razortail. 33% piercing attack. 10 to maximum
damage (not that that matters). 20 strength required.
This allows u to get 83% piercing with kuko, and at
least 1/3 of your throwing weapons will pierce.
Weapon 1 Kuko Shakaku. 50% piercing, Explosive
arrows, 40-180 fire damage. 49 dex required. Piercing
attack, coupled with crushing blow and explosive arrows,
are how you take down large groups of enemies. One kick-ass
pyrotechnics show too. :)
Socket this with a Shael rune for 20 ias. This bow
is actually better than the Machine, because the Demon
Machine is maxed out at 11 fpa (2.2 attacks per second)
on any character class with only 20% increased attack
speed (IAS). Kuko can get 10 fpa (2.5 attacks per second)
at 75 IAS on most characters, but Id recommend
here for more information.
Weapon 2 Any high damage, or high elemental damage
throwing weapon u come across. This is the only way
you might be able to leach life back, since explosive
arrows are considered a magical attack. You would think
this makes the build hard, but since it IS a magical
attack, that means when u shoot the bow, it always hits,
rendering attack rating meaningless. AR will only considered
with your throwing weapon. Since your damage will be
pitiful on the stats screen, Id recommend using
a high elemental damage throwing weapon, preferably
a throwing knife for the larger stack size..
Shield - Tiamats Rebuke. The only shield you
should consider unless doing a pally ranger (Herald
of Zakarum) or necro (Homunculus). Very high elemental
damage added to your throwing weapon damage. The block
rate is low, but youre going to be dumping most
of your points into dexterity anyways, and with monster
flee, you really shouldnt worry about getting
hit. The 91 strength requirement is good too. Socketed
with a p diamond, itll take care of a lot of your
resist problems. The only way this could be replaced
is if they came out with a new crushing blow shield
in the 1.10 patch.
Helm There are many options here. Howltusk has
25% monster flee and knockback, but kb is kinda redundant
with the monster flee. Face of Horror has 50% monster
flee, 10 to all resists, and 20 strength, which could
cut down on your strength investment. However, if youd
like + to skills, thats up to you. Again, socket
the helm with a 15 IAS jewel if needed. I dont
use Guailluames Face from the Orphans Call set
because you would already have 50% crushing blow (so
every other hit) from the armor and boots, and it has
a high strength requirement of 115. The deadly strike
on it wouldnt help much either.
Amulet Again, many options. For a help with
your IAS, go with either Cats Eye or Highlords,
though the deadly strike mod on Highlords is meaningless
considering your damage. Any rare, crafted, magical
amulet would be good here if you get enough ias from
Rings You dont need life/mana leach or
AR, so Id recommend either magical rings with
like 10-15 to all resists, or dwarf star and raven frost.
Fire absorb and cold absorb are very nice, and the mods
on raven frost would help out a lot.
Gloves I would recommend Laying of Hands for
the IAS and 50% fire resist. I dont think the
350% damage to demons would help all that much, since
I believe its based from your weapon damage. Your call
though. There are many set and unique gloves that would
be good substitutes. You could also used crafted
crushblow gloves, and hope to get 10% crush blow
and 20% IAS with some resists.
Strategies, Stats, and Skills
Stats: 91 max strength, 0 energy, and the rest in vitality
and dexterity (helpful for throwing and the low blocking
rate of Tiamats). Get to 100 vitality early on,
and add later, since the damage from the bow is minimal,
and dex wont help that much.
Charms: Either + to skill charms, life, resists, or
elemental damage. No AR needed.
Strategies: You do have to have some skill in clicking
on the monsters, but it actually helps if large packs
are coming after you (Hell cows). Just hold shift and
shoot towards the enemies. Most will be affected by
crushblow/monster flee, and the ones that slip by will
be taken out by either your skills on the right click
(sorceress/druid/necro/trapassin), or your minions (necro/druid/trapassin),
Mercenaries Only 2 to consider really. Holy
freeze or Might Act 2 Nightmare merc
For the Act 2 merc, Id recommend giving him Duriels
shell, Rockstopper, and Grims burning dead polearm or
Blackleach blade socketed with an Amn rune (the chance
for weaken rocks, and makes up for the low damage) once
they get to about level 42-45. Once they get to about
the 60s range, switch out with a dusk shroud or
higher elite Lionheart runeword armor, a mancatcher
or higher Honor runeword polearm or spear, and tals
mask (10% life leach, life, resists).
Assassin: Maxed Venom is goooood. This, along with
your traps, are all FaF skills.
For the weapon switch, you could use wizardspike and
lidless wall for skills, mana regen, and a lot of resists.
Bartucs and lidless would give more + to skills while
using fade. Or, keeping in with the theme of the build,
Tiamats and a throwing weapon. An Umd Shako would
be good on this character as well, since youll
be casting FaF traps quite a bit, and you arent
putting any points in energy.
I did pick up a great strategy from Richard Robinsons
artist guide (an excellent guide)
Use mindblast and cloak of shadows on the front of groups
of enemies before engaging them. This will decrease
their awareness, and cause them to start fighting each
other. While theyre doing that, youre wiping
out the monsters in the front row, and Death Sentry
will clean out the rest, including the converted monsters
after theyve reverted.
Its funny, the assassin is an amalgamation of
a lot of the characters, without a lot of the drawbacks.
Death sentry is CE for a lot lower mana, no need to
spam. . Burst of Speed is a mixture of Fanaticism and
Vigor. Lightning Sentry and Wake of Inferno are versions
of Lightning and Inferno, with a lot lower mana cost
and multiple positions.
Mercenary: Act 2
Traps: 1 point Fire blast, max Shock Web, max charged
bolt sentry, max Lightning Sentry, max Death Sentry
(or just 10 points in here, to allow for more points
in Shadow master).
Shadow Disciplines: 1-11 points Shadow Master (You
have to trade off with Death Sentry), maxed Venom, 1
point Cloak of Shadows, 1 point Mind Blast.
This is an amalgamation of my other crushplosive builds,
so pardon me if it's a little rough. Feel free to check
the skill points here: