Diablo 3 Best Demon Hunter Builds For Inferno, Nightmare and Hell

By   /   Sep 7, 2013

The first character I played after getting my hands on the retail version of Diablo III was the Demon Hunter. It was a dark character with a background that spoke to my most inner being, and it was natural to try a class that could wear cloaks.

The gun-slinging style of the Demon Hunter and its crushing skills also added my desire, and so I played.

For more help on Diablo 3 Builds, read our Monk Builds, Witch Doctor Builds and Barbarian Builds Guide.

Diablo 3 Best Demon Hunter Builds

I can boldly claim that I struggled a lot; the Demon Hunter is by the most difficult character to play in Diablo, and you’ll need to be very good at kiting and running away from enemies while playing the class. I’ve always been the aggressive, no-mercy type, so the Demon Hunter didn’t click with me initially.

But after playing through Hell, I got used to the class, and started loving it for its insane potential. The Demon Hunter isn’t an all-out attacker – he/she’s simply about tactics. The term ‘tactics’ seems very strange for Diablo, because although it does need some strategy at times, it is mainly an action RPG game.

The case is slightly different with the Demon Hunter. Sure, most of the times you’ll be clicking like the regular maniac you are, but things like positioning, kiting, evasion, and similar techniques all come into play with this class.

The Demon Hunter is one class that has gone through a series of ridiculous changes from the recent updates. Some of its most essential abilities have been nerfed to uselessness, while others have been buffed to insanity. Yet still the Demon Hunter is capable of delivering some crazy damage.

So, what makes it so great? Well, it has some insane nuking ability, especially in Nightmare and Hell mode. You can make enemies disappear within seconds if you play correctly, and if you don’t you’ll likely disappear in seconds as well. Also, if you’re even lacking slightly in-terms of weapon damage and items, you’ll feel the difference much more than other classes.

Diablo 3 Demon Hunter Inferno Build

Infernal Paradigm
This is, by far, the most successful build that you would come across in Inferno.

Why? Because it offers you three basic needs: damage, survivability, and evasion. In Inferno, most of the highly offensive skills (such as those from the Archery set of abilities) become completely useless and ineffective, and will only serve the purpose of looking cool. You need something more serious than just fancy effects to help you survive.

Active Skills
The first skill available to the Demon Hunter by default is the Hungering Arrow, and most DH players would agree that it remains the best Hatred generator throughout all three difficulties.

Sure, you might find Entangling Shot and Bola Shot tempting in Nightmare or Hell, but they become too slow and too useless in Inferno. I would stick to Hungering Arrow from start to finish.

This is your main damage-dealing skill, and with Spray of Teeth, you can do some pretty good AoE damage. ‘But you need critical strike rate for that,’ you say? Heck, you’re a Demon Hunter; your most important stat is Dexterity, and your most important attribute is a super-high critical hit rate. So if you’ve been following the norms, you should have lots of fun with Spray of Teeth.

The next thing is the infamous Elemental Arrow. It’s hard to say what exactly makes this ability so good; it just simply is like that. Now, a lot of people actually like using the Ball Lightning rue, but I myself prefer Nether Tentacles.

Why? Well, they return a good amount of damage as life, and you need as much life-steal as possible with the DH.

Now remember that I said you need plenty of evasion as well? That’s where Vault comes in. This is an absolutely must-have skill, and hopefully you’ve learnt how to control it and use it properly by now.

Tumble is by far the best rune for the skill, and you’ll unlock it early on, so you should already know how to manage your Discipline cost while using Vault multiple times. This is your main escape skill, so make sure a finger always hovers over that button.

The second important evasive skill is Smoke Screen. Sadly the effectiveness of Smoke Screen has been badly nerfed by Blizzard, so it’s not like what it once was – but that doesn’t mean it’s completely useless.

You can squeeze in an extra half a second with the Lingering Fog rune; it might not sound like much, but even half a second can make a difference of life and death.

Shadow Power is my personal favorite DH skill, and I had it assigned to my number 2 button the moment I unlocked it way back in Normal mode. It’s your ultimate life-steal skill, and stacks very well with Nether Tentacles of Elemental Arrow.

What I also love about this skill is the Gloom rune, which gives you a generous 35% damage reduction. I found myself activating this skill after taking a few hits, then using a mix of Hungering Arrow and Elemental Arrow to deal some damage, followed by Vault and/or Smoke Screen.

Last but not least is Preparation. Now this is an absolute freebie of a skill. It will instantly restore all your Discipline, and with the Battle Scar rune will also heal you for 60% life. How much more awesome can it get? Yes, you do have a 45 second cool-down, but that’s still good enough to allow you to use this skill during every other battle.

Passive Skills
Now, let’s have a look at the passive skills. The passive skills chosen for this build are meant to compliment the active skills. Archery is a must-have passive that will do you good no matter what kind of ranged weapon you are carrying. That small but vital boost is well worth a passive slot.

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