Witch Doctor Solo Strategy for Inferno by blizzardguides.com
For anybody who is having trouble progressing through inferno with a Witch Doctor, then this guide should help you out a lot! This guide contains videos on how to solo various bosses with a Witch doctor in Inferno. Some of these strategies were gathered from the Diablo 3 Secrets guide.
First off, my everyday witch doctor build here!
Explanation for my choices:
Spirit Walk (Mana Regen rune): First off this skill is amazing. If you don't have it in your build, you're either not in inferno yet or just a terrible witch doctor. Increased movement speed, absorbs 50% of your life worth of damage and regenerates 30% of your mana over 2 seconds with the Honored Guest rune. Incredible. Essential for kiting, emergency damage absorption and mana regen.
Poison Dart (Splinters rune): This is my main attack. With the Splinters rune it does 180% weapon damage assuming all 3 darts hit the target. Low mana cost and high single target damage make it great for both trash and bosses. Simple.
Wall of Zombies (Pile On rune): This is the only aoe attack in my build and a personal favourite of mine. High damage, long cooldown, awesome looking and incredibly hard to aim. Does a whopping 765% weapon damage with a 25 second cooldown. It takes a while to learn how to aim with it but with practice it becomes worth it. This attack isn't really a staple in the witch doctor build so you can choose another skill if you want, but be wary of the mana cost of other aoe skills since I don't use any of the mana regen passives. A personal strategy of mine is to use the hex skill to de-mobilize champions/bosses, then drop the zombies on them while they can't move.
Grasp of the Dead (80% Slow rune): Essential for kiting both mobs and bosses. The Unrelenting Grip rune slows enemies down to a crawl making them easy to kite and also to drop Wall of Zombies on. Also does a fair amount of aoe damage as well. (Great for slowing treasure goblins too!)
Hex (Healing Rune): Another awesome skill that I think is completely underrated. For champions and rares in inferno, this skill makes them slightly easier to deal with by controlling one of them while you deal with the rest. It does work on some bosses like Zoltun Kulle/Belial and gives you a good opportunity to line up a Wall of Zombies attack. The heal rune provides an instant heal of about 1800 as soon as you use the skill, and will keep healing you periodically throughout the duration.
Horrify (Extra Radius rune): This skill is just a random crowd control button that can be switched out for any other skill in the WD arsenal really. I used to use Mass Confusion but switched to Horrify for the shorter cooldown. I don't really use this skill on bosses, it's mainly for champs and mobs that get too close to you. My other choice for this slot is Haunt with the health regen rune to use on bosses. Haunt does a fair bit of damage, only has to be cast every 12 seconds and returns a bit of health in the process.
Notes on other skills (feel free to contribute):
Big Bad Voodoo: Pretty good in co-op games but I dislike it due to its long cooldown. Use it in place of Horrify if you like it.
Fetish Army: Also dislike due to its long cooldown Gargantuan and Zombie Dogs: Ahaa, are you serious Blizzard?! Absolutely useless in inferno. Both get 1 shot and deal little damage. Avoid at all costs. (Although I do sense a buff coming in the future for these to make them viable. Maybe scaling their life and damaging in proportion to the witch doctor)
Firebomb: Can replace Poison Dart for champs and trash since it does have nice aoe but for bosses its better to use Poison Dart since it does more damage.
Mass Confusion: Another great crowd control spell aside from horrify, however the cooldown does seem a bit too long even with the 45 second cooldown rune.
Soul Harvest: A very viable skill all around that gives you a nice DPS boost. However I dislike having to constantly run into mobs to apply it over and over. Use it in place of Horrify if you like.
Jungle Fortitude: A very general passive with straight 20% damage reduction. I found that with this passive, a lot of attacks that would've one-shot me in inferno just brought me down to very low health instead, allowing me to use a potion and Hex heals to heal myself back up quickly. If you still get one-shot a lot even with this passive then switch it to something else.
Spirit Vessel: Sweet Jesus this passive has saved my ass so many times. I never really liked this passive at first, but playing in inferno makes you see how viable it really is. Basically it saves you from death every 90 seconds and puts you in spirit walk mode allowing you to make a quick escape. You WILL die a lot in inferno and this skill is just a lifesaver (literally huehuehue). But wait that's not all! The passive also reduces the cooldown on Spirit Walk by 2 seconds! Whaaaat, shit I'm sold.
Pierce the Veil: Straight up 20% damage increase at a cost of 30% more mana on all your skills. Since the bread and butter of the build is Poison Dart (10 mana per cast) you don't really have to worry about mana anyways. Zombie Wall and Grasp will bring your mana down a fair bit but this is countered by using spirit walk for that 30% mana back. This passive gives you that extra DPS boost that is quite needed in inferno.
I have heard about the zombie bear build and tried it myself. Choosing all the mana regen passives and spamming zombie bears for high damage. However I didn't care for it much for 3 reasons:
-you miss out on other great passives and have to keep your other skills on cooldown.
-you have to get in reasonably close range to use.
-it seemed that even with all the mana regen skills and passive you still couldn't spam it endlessly.
I focus on gear that gives you both intelligence and vitality. Some attack speed on rings/amulets will boost your DPS nicely too. Act 1 inferno is pretty forgiving on gear and stats but before you go into Act 2, you want to aim for at least 30k health and 20k DPS. Buy a nice weapon off the AH if you need to. I didn't go into Act 2 until I had a 966 damage 2-hander which I bought off the AH for about 1.7 million gold (they are much cheaper now). Do Act 1 Nephalem Valor farm runs if you need some cash.
My gear as of May 24th.
I use the Templar as a follower. His heals are quite usual in most situations even though his aggro is absolute crap. Just stack his gear with as much strength as you can get for some extra DPS. His skills:
Heal - basic heal with 15s cooldown
Loyalty - extra life regeneration
Charge - does a nice 3 second stun
Guardian - heals you and knocks back enemies when you are low health
Champions and Rares:
A few people have be asking how to deal with certain champs in inferno. There are some champs with affixes that just seem impossible to do. Off the top of my head these are the ones that I feel need explaining..
Fast - I generally skip fast champs. Simply because they are impossible to kite and will just run up to you and 1-shot you. Some champs like skeletons in Act 1 move so slow that even with the Fast affix they are still kite-able so it's possible to do those.
Invulnerable Minions - My most hated affix. I will instantly skip these rares since my main strategy is to pick off the minions then focus on the rare himself which is pretty easy with the Hex skill. Trying to only damage the rare and avoid his minions at the same time is too much of a headache and very hard to do with Poison Darts.
Mortarr - Do-able but takes some practice. It's simple a combination of shooting Poison Dart once then moving back, shooting, moving, shooting, moving etc. It will generally take a while to kill them so put down Grasp constantly and try to line up a nice Pile On. I tend to try and keep the champs a little bit off-screen which seems to be out of range for them to use Mortar. Use Spirit Walk for emergencies.
Illusionist - Do-able but kind of annoying. Just kite them regularly though Grasp and use Darts and Zombies to damage. If they move too fast to kite them just skip them.
Jailer and Waller - Spirit Walk Although you can't use Spirit Walk to run through the walls, you can just use it to run through the monsters and kite them the other way.
Teleport - I've found that if the champs are a bit off-screen they won't teleport to you. So just spam Darts and hope they hit. If they do teleport to you then just Spirit Walk away. However I have found that some champs with teleport are almost impossible to do.
Vortex - Same strategy as Teleport.
Boss Kill Videos:
Skeleton King: A very simple and pretty easy fight. Not much of an explanation necessary, kill adds asap and avoid his swirling swing. In the video I was quite overgeared for the fight (23k DPS) so you probably won't kill him as fast a I did.
Queen Araneae: A pretty straightforward fight. She only really has one attack, spitting poison in melee range. She will charge you and use the attack so just move out of range (Spirit Walk if you have to). She also spits spiderwebs at you which slow you down. You can just walk out of these if you have time or use Spirit Walk to remove the snare. At a couple of intervals she will disappear and spawn a few adds. Just put down Grasp to slow them and pick them off with Poison Dart. In the video I was quite overgeared for the fight (23k DPS) and made a lot of lazy mistakes which you might not be able to do with lesser stats.
The Butcher: I found the fight quite challenging the first few times I did it, but it was quite easy to master with practice. You do need a reasonable amount of DPS for this fight since there is an enrage timer (3 minutes I think) where the floor will fill up completely with fire. Stay at a reasonable range from him so you don't get melee'd and have time to react to his attacks. He has a hook attack where he will point at you, then send a hook in your direction which will drag you back to him and perform a melee slam which will most likely 1-shot you. You can avoid this attack easily by just moving out of the way when he points at you. If you do get caught, use Spirit Walk immediately and you will be able to run away without getting melee'd. He also has a ranged attack which sends out a bunch of chains in a cone area and hits you for about half your health or more. When you get hit by this attack, use a potion and the Hex skill to bring your health back up to full. If these are on cooldown then use a health well. You want to try to stay at full health at all times.
Lastly he will have a charge attack which is quite visible and easy to dodge. After he charges into the wall he will be stunned for a couple seconds which is a good time to use Pile On zombies for a nice damage chunk.
Magda: A pretty simple fight at the beginning of Act 2. In fact, I found a lot of regular mobs in Act 2 were harder than this fight -.- She only has 1 ranged attack which you have to watch out for. It's a big ball of purple/blueish flies that moves pretty slowly but follows you, so just run until it disappears. At regular health intervals she will go invulnerable and spawn 4 melee adds. Just kite them with Grasp/Hex and kill with Darts and Pile On. Repeat until dead.
Zoltun Kulle: This was the longest boss fight I've done to date, mainly because of all the kiting. At all points during the fight you want to stay a good distance from Zoltun so you have time to react to his fireball attack. The first phase is just kiting the 2 big construct monsters with Grasp and killing them with Darts and Pile On. Hex does not work on the constructs but does work on Zoltun (more on that later).
There are 3 attacks from Zoltun that you have to watch out for:
Fireball - Shoots a pretty fast fireball at you that can can just dodge. If you are in close range of Zoltun this will most likely kill you.
Falling Rocks - As soon as the ground starts to shake, run and don't stop until all the rocks have fallen. Use Spirit Walk if you have to. This attack can one-shot you if you're not careful.
Tornadoes - Fairly easy to dodge.
Once the 2 constructs were killed, I kited Zoltun around in a circle and tried to keep him just a bit off-screen. Use Darts to damage him but be prepared to move for fireballs. A common strategy that I used was to pop Spirit Walk, run right past him and use Hex, then turn around and drop Pile On to do some nice damage.
As far as I know, there is no enrage to this fight so just focus on good dodging and he will be killed eventually..