Skill Calculator: Witch Doctor PVP Build

As stated previously, we’re going to be posting PvP builds using the talent calculator and the most up-to-date information there is. And what better way to kick off this segment than with a build from what appears to be the most underrated class in PvP at the moment. Working to disavow that notion, I present to you a Witch Doctor PvP build that I feel shows some great potential and explain my logic.

Here we go!: http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/witch-doctor#kdUaVh!ZWf!bbaaYc

First Slot:

Skill: Wall of Zombies
Runestone: Unrelenting Grip (Golden)
Explanation: This is your general crowd control ability, setting up walls to block your opponent’s movement, while the golden runestone adds a slowing effect on top of the movement blocking. This should make kiting a breeze.
Possible substitutions:
Skill: Grasp of the Dead – Cost: 53 Mana, Cooldown: 8 seconds – “Hands reach out from the ground slowing enemy movement by 50% and dealing 50% weapon damage per second as Physical for 8 seconds.
Runestone: Desperate Grasp (Golden) – “Reduces the cooldown to 4.5 seconds.” Or: Unbreakable Grasp (Obsidian) – “Increase the slow amount to 64%.”
Explanation: About the same idea, but I feel the movement blocking of the wall will be more beneficial in most situations.

Second Slot:

 
Skill: Hex
Runestone: Hedge Magic (Golden)
Explanation: Hex is a no-brainer here, a complete disable that actually INCREASES damage taken? Yes please. I picked the golden runestone to add even more utility to the skill, taking them out of commission while healing yourself at the same time, can’t beat it.
Possible substitutions:
Runestone: Jinx (Alabaster) – “Increases the damage taken by hexed targets to 90%.”
Description: Increasing the damage bonus on hex to a whopping 90%, use this if you don’t feel you need the healing.

 
 
 

Third Slot:

 
Skill: Spirit Walk
Runestone: Healing Journey (Alabaster)
Explanation: Your ‘get the hell out of dodge’ ability for when things are getting too hot for the fragile Witch Doctor. Lets face it, you’re probably in dire straights when you need to pop this ability, so the healing component with the alabaster runestone isn’t going to hurt.
Possible Substitutions:
Runestone: Jaunt (Indigo) – “Increases the duration of Spirit Walk to 10.0 seconds.”
Explanation: You lose the healing component but make Spirit Walk useful for kiting as well as escaping.
 
 

Fourth Slot:

 

Skill: Poison Dart
Runestone: Snake to the Face (Alabaster)
Explanation: Besides having just about the coolest name of any skill in the game, this ability will provide consistent DoT damage with the possibility of a 3 second stun. This combined with Spirit Walk and Zombie Wall should be able to get you much needed distance on those pesky Monks and Barbarians while chipping away at their HP.
Possible substitutions:
Skill: Horrify – Cooldown: 20 seconds – “Don a spectral mask that horrifies all enemies within 12 yards, causing them to run in fear for 5 seconds.”
Runestone: Stalker (Alabaster) – “Gain 50% increased movement speed for 4 seconds after cast.”
Same idea of creating distance from your opponents, but this time by fearing them and giving yourself a speed boost. Possibly more reliable, but no DoT damage.

Fifth Slot:

 
Skill: Firebats
Runestone: Hungry Bats (Indigo)
Explanation: This will be your bread and butter for dealing damage. The indigo runestone basically turns this ability into Bonespirit from Diablo 2, and we all know how powerful Bonespirit was.
Possible substitutions:
None. You need this.
 
 

Sixth Slot:

 

Skill: Gargantuan
Runestone: Big Stinker (Obsidian)
Explanation: This big guy will be your tank to soak up some homing type spells, along with providing consistent damage from melee and the added poison DoT from the runestone.
Possible substitutions:
I feel this is really your swing slot, if you’re out there shrinking heads and you find your have a weakness to a specific class or build? Slap something in here to help you against them. However if you like the idea of having a pet here, you could try…
Skill: Zombie Dogs – Cost: 176 Mana, Cooldown: 60 seconds – “Summon 3 zombie dogs from the depths to fight by your side.”
Runestone: Life Link (Indigo) – “70% of damage taken is absorbed by your zombie dogs.”

 

Passive Skills:

First Slot: Vermin – “Your Plague of Toads, Corpse Spiders and Firebats abilities do 20% more damage.”
Ups the damage of your hungry, hungry bats.

Second Slot: Rush of Essence – “Spirit spells return 200% of their Mana cost over 10 seconds.”
Spirit Walk now breaks slows, heals you, and restores your mana. Hell yeah.

Third Slot: Death Trance – “Reduce damage by 20% whenever you are below 50% of your maximum life.”
Damage reduction when you’re under 50% HP. Seems like this one was made for PvP, a safe choice.

Possible substitutions:
Pierce the Veil (“All of your damage is increased by 20% but your Mana costs are increased by 30%.”) and Tribal Rights (“The cooldowns of your Fetish Army, Big Bad Voodoo and Hex abilities are reduced by 25%.”) could slip in this build easily, but watch your mana if you chose Pierce the Veil. If you have Zombie Dogs in your swing slot, Zombie Handler (“You can have 4 Zombie Dogs out at once. The health of your Zombie Dogs and Gargantuan is increased by 60%.”) might be a good idea.

*Remember folks, this is build is based on beta skills that are subject to change, and until we step foot in the arena this is all merely theorycrafting. However if you have your own badass Witch Doctor PvP build feel free to share it in the comments!

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