[2.2] Rathma's Chosen - Attack/Summon Hybrid

INTRODUCTION ___________________________________________________________________

Another build inspired by the Median XL necromancer, a follower of the cult dedicated to the nephalem Rathma. This particular take on it explores the death knight aspect of the class, uncannily combining the realms of intellect and brute power.

"The Rathma priests are known as magical experts, not mighty warriors. But with the right mixture of alchemical ingredients, even a necromancer can turn into a slavering scythe-wielding maniac. Death Knights, the warrior branch of the Cult, are commonly seen wielding wicked hexblades or enchanted scythes capable of slicing through steel and demon scales."

MECHANICS ______________________________________________________________________

Normally, a build like this would be heavily gimped by its lack of focus, however now that we have a few new Ascendancy tricks at our disposal we can mesh it up into something that makes a good amount of sense.

For one, the build is actually on the sturdy side, which was necessary as its mobility options are fairly limited. Having both offering spells at its disposal, it can either bolster its clear speed with Flesh Offering or give itself and its pets more staying power with Bone offering. Besides that, it can also boast 6 endurance charges and some armor, which combined with zombie bonus raises its physical mitigation to at least 40% at the worst case scenario, usually a lot more. Also, it has a decent amount of mana leech and regen so maintaining MoM is no problem and it can dual curse dangerous targets with Enfeeble or Temp chains if needed. Everything combined, it makes for a pretty durable character that isn't a pushover even when not shielded by its pets.

Offensively, I wanted to try something new this time and went for 100% physical approach with blasphemied Vulnerability instead of Hatred. Besides the obvious damage, bonus it also supports the offensive Knitted Horrors + Bloodlust combo, augmenting the bleed they inflict. As a main skill, I've been using Sunder most of the time, because it excels in crowd control which is somewhat of a sore point for summoners, however you can also use other skills, like Sweep, Cleave, Ground Slam or even Cyclone.

Earthquake probably deserves a note of special importance here. As you will use a number of jewels that boost physical and AoE damage you can also ditch Horrors and use a powerful weapon like Disfavour, switching Bloodlust for Less Duration to trigger a very strong bleed. Honestly, it's so good it trumps all other Skills by an order of magnitude, however I wanted a combo with minions here so Sunder stays where it is, even though EQ with some other physical spectres like Evangelists is much more powerful.

Another option is Dominating blow, it's easy to move into it and you're tanky enough to go recruiting on the front lines with little fear of untimely demise. The only change you'd need to do is swap one AoE cluster for skill duration.

PASSIVE TREE ____________________________________________________________________

The tree should ultimately look like this at level 90, you got 112 point + merciless oak for the extra charge.

A thing to note in general when doing builds like these is you have to be really patient with them, hybrids are notorious latebloomers so they rarely come into their own before 80-ish levels.

As for the development during levelling it should go like this
1. Rush all minion survivability passives and use Skullhead to make them durable in early game.
2. Next go for RT and spend the time until maps to make yourself durable enough.
3. Use the plentiful jewel sockets to raise minion resists and your dps output.
4. Once you got enough minion resists you should get rid of Purity and go for MoM, make sure you have enough mana on gear to have at least 700-800 mana free after Vulnerability and enough mana leech and regen to support it.
5. After all that you can start raising your dps output by taking minion passives and nodes for your chosen weapon, preferable 2H Axe or Mace.

GEAR ____________________________________________________________________________

The build does have a few gearing problems, unfortunately. One of them is chest socket colour as having a decent amount of armor is very effective when combined with high guaranteed physical mitigation you got, with 32% right off the bat getting even 10% from armor will cut incoming damage by 15%, which isn't too shabby. Unfortunately, Horrors need projectile supports which skews your color scheme heavily towards blue and green.

All that can be solved by using this armor if you can find the right variant, besides being able to color it however you want it has decent armor, a good amount of core stats it's cheap and that 100 mana on kill helps a bunch with MoM, a winner all around.

Another problem, if you can call it that, is our dps output, which will be lowish even with all those dps jewels. That means you need a powerful weapon to make up for it and Disfavour is right on the money, it has the dps and even supports the EQ bleed or Cyclone variant right out of the box if you prefer it. Not exactly cheap but still accessible enough in temp leagues.

The rest of the gear should be devoted to raising core stats and getting some mana/life leech on jewelry. You can skip the Bones if you prefer higher move speed and don't care about losing a spectre, I went for a bit of extra necro in my setup.

You should also get a number of jewels like these, the good thing about them is they're regarded as "junk jewels with stats all over the place" so they're cheap

For your Animated guardian you can go for the standard setup of Leer Cast, Dying Breath, Zandethus' Cassock and Southbound

SKILLS ___________________________________________________________________________

I probably talked enough about all of it so I'll just list the links here

Main attack
DominatingBlow-MeleePhysicalDamage-MeleeSplash-Multistrike-FasterAttacks(or Fortify)

Spectre setup

Tank team
You can use chaos golem instead, of course, I wanted an all phys team here

Support setup
The second one is really important for encounters which are slim on corpses, you don't want to run out of Bone offering fodder on some bosses.

Offering/Curse setup
Flesh Offering-Bone Offering-Enfeeble-IncreasedDuration

And you should have an extra slot in your weapon or chest for Enduring Cry.

Q&A _____________________________________________________________________________

* Are there any downsides to this build?
- Sure, like I said, it's a latebloomer so you need to be patient with it, at times it will look almost failed, especially in 60-80 level stretch but it will come around.
- It's really slow when you don't have Flesh Offering up, but you usually do and it can be remedied by using some other boots.
- It isn't a dirt-cheap build but I made it as an opener build in Perandus so it isn't too expensive either.

* And advantages?
- It's fun, subjectively speaking, you got a wide range of skills so it needs some button pushing to work properly, and I see a decent amount of people asking for a bit more active builds that require more than one button. Skills are mostly on manual so you need to keep an eye on your charges, offerings, curses and minions besides attacking yourself, a lot to do but you don't really need to do it all the time which saves it from having too high maintenance for everyday play.
- It's hard to kill, especially if you use a skill that gives you some range, like GS or Sunder so you can pull out if it gets too hot. You don't have to be too picky about map mods with it and can kill most bosses easily, but I still won't call it HC friendly, it does end up a decent build but it has stages in its development when it's really weak.

VIDEOS __________________________________________________________________________

Ok, here's a bit of a showcase, keep in mind those are dried lake Horrors in a 4L, didn't have a 5L at the time so they can be a lot stronger.

FINAL WORD _____________________________________________________________________

This build is again dedicated to GGG. A big thank you for all the recent power creep that allows crap like this to work.
Wish the armchair developers would go back to developing armchairs.

Last edited by raics on Apr 12, 2016, 6:07:09 AM
Last bumped on Sep 4, 2016, 6:35:57 PM
have you seen new "The Scourge" unique claw ? What good do you think it would be in this build ?
Pretty much what that other guy posted in your thread, new minion helm, no need to take any weapon scaling on tree and more powerful summons.

Main problem besides the dps loss would be the loss of a high link weapon, so you won't be able to have both powerful attack and powerful spectres. An easy way to overcome that would be 4link gear pieces with a support, like Wyrmsign.

I'll certainly try the claw if it turns out affordable enough, there aren't many of them on the market currently but I don't think they will be too expensive once the price settles.
Wish the armchair developers would go back to developing armchairs.

Last edited by raics on Sep 5, 2016, 11:30:10 AM

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