This guide helps you do exactly that by aiding you with a few suggestive builds that have been tested out. Each build encourages a different play-style, so make sure you read about each one in order to decide which suits you best.
Build #1 – Chicken Fetish – Click To View Build!
This is a tough build to use, but those with already good gear will enjoy it a lot. What makes this build so special is that it relies little on your damage dealing abilities, and more on the abilities of your minions.
If you have the required equipment, this build will allow you to farm through countless dungeons much faster than anything else.
Your primary source of direct damage (and realistically only source) are the Firebats with the Vampire Bats rune. This rune will make Firebats only have an initiation cost, after you can channel it for an infinite amount of time for some great directional AoE damage over time.
Spirit Walk is not only your escape skill, but also your massive Mana regen skill alongside Horrify. Both these are amplified with their respective runes in this build to generate Mana. And why are we exactly generating Mana?
Well, your main mana-spender is Firebats for the most being, but you can spend a lot on any other preferred direct-damage skill.
In this build setup I’ve used Spirit Barrage as an example, but many players wouldn’t enjoy having to channeling-type skills, so you could remove that for something like, say, Acid Rain if you wished.
Though Firebats is your main damage dealer, your Fetish Army is what should be your heaviest damage ability. These little boys can do a lot of damage to clear out large mobs, provided you have something like the Zunimassa’s powerful set which will greatly amplify the effectiveness of the Fetishes.
One interesting little skill that is widely overlooked is Hex. True that it’s ignorable for most of the times, but if you actually use the Angry Chicken rune it can prove to be very useful (and highly amusing).
Not only can it make you run around in chicken-form very fast, it will also allow you to explode dealing large AoE damage.
For passives, we’re using Pierce the Veil. This will increase the cost on Firebats and any skill you choose to replace Spirit Barrage with, but it will also increase the damage, which is something you really want.
The regeneration from Spirit Walk and Horrify (both of which should be your getaway skills as well) will allow you to use your mana without much trouble despite the PtV passive.
Fetish Sycophants will allow you to have an additional Fetish, while Tribal Rites will reduce the cool-down on Fetish Army and Hex. Additionally, Grave Injustice should also help in greatly reducing cool-down along with increasing your mana and life regen.
You’ll need some pretty sweet gear for this. Try prioritizing items that will increase your mana pool and reduce or mana consumption. Also aim for items that grant reduced cool-downs and buff any of the skills that you have.
The Zunimassa’s set works wonderfully well with this build if you can manage to acquire your hands on it in Torment difficulty.
Build #2 – Bears and Fish – Click To View Build!
Prior to the 2.0 patch for Diablo 3, the Zombie Bear rune modification to Zombie Charger was every Witch Doctor’s favorite skill. Since its nerf, people have neglected it without actually trying it out.
Zombie Charger is still very powerful, and can take out mobs very quickly once combined with your Fetish army and Piranhas. That is the core concept of this build, which his highly offensive and looks to utilize a lot of mana.
I’m not really a fan of the signature skills of the Witch Doctor, and frankly speaking with the insane DoT and area damage the class can deliver, you don’t really need them if you’re good at Mana management.
Haunt, along with its draining spirit should be your initiating skill. Immediately after you’ve released a few haunting spirits, you should use Zombie Charger along with Piranhas to inflict a huge amount of damage.
Piranhas will be utilizing the Pirhanado, which will collect all the enemies to one area and do damage. This is perfect for you to actually direct your Zombie Bears towards the mob to inflict a lot of damage.
Spirit Walk once again will become your main escape skill, and alongside Haunt it will be your mana regen skill. We’ll also take aid of the Big Bad Voodoo to boost your attack speed (hence more zombie bears).
In addition, the Rain Dance will further keep you supplied with lots of Mana.
This combination is excellent against Elites or Nephalem Rift Guardians, where you have to stand and attack constantly. The Fetish army should deal with the lesser foes while you focus all your arsenal towards the tougher enemies with this build.
For passives, we’re using Pierce the Veil, meaning Mana costs go up.
If you have good awareness, you should be able to keep an eye on your Mana while dealing damage with the best possible efficiency. Creeping Death is used to greatly amplify the damage output from Piranhas and Haunt, while Tribal Rites should keep your cool-downs into a manageable zone.
Try to prioritize Mana-oriented gear and transmogrify any redundant stats with resource increase (or resource usage reduction) ones.
You should also try to get cool-down reduction gear. Having a Voodoo Mask, dagger, and a mojo will greatly help in case of most Mana-hungry builds, and should also help you in increasing the damage output of specific skills.
Build #3 – A Lonely Cold Spirit – Click To View Build!
We’re calling it the Lonely Spirit because you won’t have any Fetish, doggie, or Gargantuan by your side for this build. It’s all you and those whimsical spirits that you summon, along with the fishies… and spiders.
Not a build for those who suffer from arachnophobia, as tossing jars of spiders is what you’ll be doing.
Most players aren’t actually fans of the signature skills of the Witch Doctor (and frankly speaking I don’t find the Wizard’s signature skills appealing either), but there’s a purpose to this build.
Notice that we’ve used the word “Cold” in the title of the build – it’s because you’ll be doing a lot of slowing, which will greatly free-up space for you to move around and dominate foes in Torment.
The objective of the build is to throw some Corpse Spider jars, which thanks to the Medusa Spiders rune will slow enemies, spawn some Frozen Piranhas right under a large collected mob, and then destroy that mob with an unforgiving combination of multiple Acid Clouds and Spirit Barrages.
Acid Cloud is one of my favorite AoE abilities in the game. Heck, it’s not just an AoE ability, because it also deals crazy AoE damage.
It doesn’t have a cool-down, meaning you can spam is as long as your Mana pool allows, and it does severe damage to multiple enemies, which is just so awesome when you have them badly trapped in a pool of frozen water filled with skin-chewing fish.
The Acid Pool also has two stages of damage: a direct stage right when you cast it and the acid spills down, and the DoT stage where the pool of acid remains and damages enemies. This pool usually lasts only 3 seconds with vanilla Acid Rain, but with the Slow Burn rune you can extend the duration to 6 seconds.
Spirit Barrage is your second Mana spender in this build. We’re using a mana-regeneration rune, which along with Spirit Walk should keep your supply ready almost all the time.
Of course, let’s not forget the ever-reliable Rain Dance of the Big Bad Voodoo, which should keep you a long-lasting supply against those meaner foes (Elites and what-not).
For passives, we’re using Grave Injustice for some health regen, mana regen, and also cool-down reduction, combining it with Spiritual Attunement and Vision Quest for further regeneration with the Corpse Spiders signature skill.
Your Piranhas will result in a huge damage boost with the Creeping Death passive, allowing your Acid Cloud, Spirit Barrage, and spiders to do much more damage than otherwise.
You don’t have to have great gear to make this build effective. Just try to focus on piling up as much Intelligence and Toughness as possible for this build.
Again, having mojos for the added Mana-related assistance and Daggers for Witch Doctor-specific offensive stats will help you lots for this build.
It’s a great build to go through Torment with more or less common gear.
As long as you have good general stats, you won’t be needing the super-effects of some of the most powerful legendaries if you can pull of the crippling AoE and DoT damage that this build can inflict on large mobs and tougher foes.
One of the long time staff at SegmentNext, Haider is an integral part of the team with a love for writing, playing guitar, and aviation.
Apart from writing for us, Haider is also a competitive FPS player and also enjoys exotic RPG games like Diablo and Xenogears (his favorite game of all time) on the side.