DeathSeraph's Bowdruid

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DeathSeraph
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THE BOWDRUID - FULL BUILD GUIDE



Introduction

The build got an enormous rework for its previous weak and less enjoyable build in 1.7. Since it's pretty new build, I found out It can be WAY WAY stronger than ever it was! Also it is really easy to play, although it can be difficult to play unless you play this build for the first time. The entire build became into phys-fire damage based build (from phys/magic) and so you can easily build it around your innate elemental damage, which fire dmg (/w -150%+ fire pierce) is going to be way more powerful in lategame content. Soo guys, let's get into the build's pros and cons, shall we?

PROS
- Really good farmer build
- Pretty simple to learn the build's mechanics
- Has an EXTREMLY tanky bear, which also draws your enemy aggro with a good buff
- Big AOE effect on cascade (Or Rain of Arrows), but comes with less skill duration
- Has a good passive for being mobile

CONS
- Not really good at bossing.. (Kabraxis is an exception!)
- You need to rely on your Steady Shot to use other Hunter skills every time..
- Bear has low proc chance to activate the buff (Heart Of The Pack), and stay close to Teddy.. right??
- Using The bear also requires 1 minute Cooldown to use it again

SKILLS

Here are all the important skills which you'll use for the build.

HUNTER skills:

- Steady Shot (SS): Steady Shot is your "primary" skill in order to use your "secondary" skills. Putting point into it, you'll lock (It's called Devotion skill) every other skills to avoid spending points into useless skills. After using it, you'll a gain all skills (+1 all skills / 2 BASE levels), BUT it'll also lock EVERY NON-HUNTER SKILLS! (For example; OHMAN, Arrowswarm, Widowmaker)
- Cascade (OR Rain OF Arrows OR ROA): Our first (Lvl 3) secondary skill. It has large AOE, and it's only effective in the most crowded areas (Fauzt, Vizjun especially). It gives only 30% bonus fire dmg/ level (300% its cap). Also ROA will consume the buff from SS, keep this buff all the time.
- Heartseeker (HS): The former Homing Novashot, your juicy boss killer skill, these projectiles will seek their own target from big distances. The closer you're to the boss, the more dmg you'll aqcuire in order to eliminate the boss ASAP. (Buut if you stand in their Hitbox, you won't do any dmg, so you should keep a short distance between you and your bosses to work.) Same for ROA, it has 30% bonus fire dmg/ level respectively.
- Pathfinder: A passive which is quite useful for 2 reasons. It gives boost for innate elemental dmg, so it makes even easier to build up to your fire spec. And movement speed boost is much more useful for escaping or travelling at high speed. The rest stats are okay imo.
- Bear Companion (BC, Bear, Pombär, Teddy, Winnie the Pooh, AND SO MANY ALTERNATIVES..): This summon has different characteristics, and mechanics compaired to other summons. It has a BUFF (Heart Of The Pack), which will let you to use your secondary skills infinitely for a limited time, but it still requires SS stack to use the secondary skills and gives us 3%/sec life regen. Sadly, you must be close to Pooh to get the buff, aand it has reaaaally low proc chance, GL. Anyways, It inherites your Phy res, offensive stats (NOT MINION DMG STATS!!), casts Rend and the Buff.

NATURE SKILLS:
- Elvensong: It's good for charming mobs in highly crowded areas (e. g. Duncraig), and putting points to reach 20% Avoid via symbiosis.
- Barkskin: The former-former BRC Reward passive, aka. the former Ennead challange reward is being placed in here, it's still the same as before. If you didn't know what it has, it gives bonus defense and life.
- Harvesters (Acid Fiends): Your lesser mateshields. Gives you 30% movement and attack speed aura. Put only enough points to reach the max amount.

ULTIMATE SKILLS:
NOTE: You can choose only 1 skill per Character. But these skills are useful for the build.
- Survival instinct: A passive which is for Werewolf druid and caster druid basically, BUT it's nice passive for our build as well. 10% Phys res sounds nice, cold dmg is not meant for us, even though this passive is just a defensive option.
- Faerie Fire: And other defensive buff. This buff is only good for stacking avoid. It depends on you which you're about to choose.
- Vine Companion: A MASSIVE CREEPER FELLOW. This is still the number one if you like his nerf attack, and his %life aura. It's an offensive option.

REWARD SKILLS:
NOTE: These skills can be only obtained from certain challenge areas.
- Mythal (Ennead Reward): A debuff AOE skill, in which that area the foe is getting more vulnerable to elemental dmg (only 20%), I didn't use, but I think it can be useful if you have lack of dmg in early ubers. (Such as Akarat... Nerf when?)
- Symbiosis (Black Road "Challenge" Aka. BRC): This buff gives you 2 stats: Life regen and Avoid. Gains synergy from Elvensong (Avoid: max 20%) and Harvesters (Life Regen: max 20 sec)

GAMEPLAY

In this section I'll cover the skill plans, gear suggestions and Early-Mid-Late Game stuff. Are you ready? Let's begin.


EARLY GAME: Normal (lvl 1-60)

SKILL PLAN:

HUNTER skills:
- SS: MAX - We need to keep maxed, to have more skill levels during stack time.
- ROA: 10 points It also means MAX.
- HS: 1 or max, it is handy with only 1 point in normal.
- Pathfinder: Max.
- Pombär (Bear Companion): MAX, we'll max it out to keep and use the buff as long we can.
NATURE SKILLS:
- Barkskin: MAX.
- Harvesters: 8 points.

STATS:
Strength (STR): Enough to wear gear
Dexterity (DEX): Rest
Vitality (VIT): None
Energy (ENE): None

Early Game Gear:
► Show Spoiler


Progression:
Play as a normal bow druid and struggle yourself until Mephisto at least to farm AC-S (Arcane Crystals). So what are these exactly? Powerful crafting materials, which will let you create your own Tier uniques. AC-s can be obtained from Disenchanting Tier Uniques, Sets, Sacred Uniques, (You'll get Catalyst upon Andariel's death), and from quest rewards (Act 2: Tal Rasha's tomb reward, after you talked to Tyreal and leaving act 2, and Act 3: Khalim's will and The Blackened Temple reward, after you slain the new "Council" in Travincal). So speaking of Act Bosses, They have 100% chance to drop TU-s so that is why you should farm them (Andariel and Duriel drop 1 TU, Mephisto-Diablo-Baal drop 2 TU-s, and Nihlathak gives you 3!! TU-s. BUUT ONLY IN NORMAL.). Once you got 5 Arcane shards you can now transform it into Crystal, 1 AC is enough to up tier your gear, but you'll need 2 AC-S or 10 TU-s to create your own gear part + with an Oil of Enhancement (Blue one). Once you are done with act 4 and reached Anya, make Nihl runs beside Meph runs as well (You'll get 2+3 Tu-s + the extra on your way if you found randomly/run).

LEVEL CHALLENGE:
► Show Spoiler


MIDGAME: Nightmare (Lvl61-100)

SKILL PLAN:

HUNTER skills:
- SS: MAX.
- ROA: MAX.
- HS: MAX.
- Pathfinder: Max.
- Pooh (Bear Companion): MAX.
NATURE SKILLS:
- Barkskin: MAX.
- Harvesters: 8 points.
ULTIMATE SKILLS:
- One of your favoured skill. (I went with Survival Instinct at fresh Lvl 90.)

STATS:
Strength (STR): Enough to wear gear
Dexterity (DEX): Rest
Vitality (VIT): None
Energy (ENE): None

MIDGame Gear:
► Show Spoiler


Progression:
Have at least T3-4 Uniques before you go Nightmare. Use Bloodstones/Onyxes/Ambers/Turquoises into your armor pieces to raise your resists if you have low res. Now your aim is to reach Lvl 90 and the Completion of Ennead Challange. Playstyle is still unchanged, you stay behind Pooh and you just wait for the buff. Nothing special so far. Nightmare Baal will make headache for you, so be well prepared.

ENNEAD CHALLENGE:
► Show Spoiler


Lategame: Hell and Ubers (Lvl101-150)

HUNTER skills:
- SS: MAX.
- ROA: MAX.
- HS: MAX.
- Pathfinder: Max.
- Pooh (Bear Companion): MAX.
NATURE SKILLS:
- Elvensong: 26 points to reach the maximum of Avoid synergy in Symbiosis. (At Lvl 115.)
- Barkskin: MAX.
- Harvesters: 8 points.
ULTIMATE SKILLS:
- Vine is your considered skill here, 1 point or MAX.
REWARD SKILL:
- Symbiosis MAX it (4 points), to benefit from the total effects of Avoid and Life Regen.

STATS:
Strength (STR): Enough to wear gear
Dexterity (DEX): Rest
Vitality (VIT): None
Energy (ENE): None

Early EndGame Gear (Beginning Of Ubers At Lvl105.):
► Show Spoiler


Progression:
If you need so many levels to enter into the first Uber, you should go back to Nighmare and farm at Baal runs. All you need to do is, be far away from the Contraption and avoid it. You want to let the Machine spawn the addons for EXP. If the Machine once destroyed, perform it again until Lvl 105. In Hell difficulty, make sure your items are T4 and used Mystic Orbs everywhere, or Runeword items are used in the process. Cap your resists with the Gems as I mention earlier. Your tasks here are only the Ubers. Now let's move onto our first Uber!

UBERS

In this section, I'll mark the Ubers with numbers (1.) as a correct order to do them during Lvl-ing.

UBERS: VERY EASY (Req. LVL 105.)

DUNGEON UBERS:
ACT I.

THE BUTCHER - HORROR UNDER TRISTRAM

► Show Spoiler


THE INFERNAL MACHINE - INFERNAL CAVE
► Show Spoiler

ACT II.

LESSER RIFTWALKER - INVASION
► Show Spoiler


ACT III.

DEATH PROJECTOR
► Show Spoiler


RIFTS:

ACT II.

ISLAND OF THE SUNLESS SEA
► Show Spoiler


UBERS: EASY (Req. LVL 110.)

DUNGEON UBERS:

ACT II.

TAL RASHA - THE BINDING OF BAAL
► Show Spoiler


ACT III.

THE CREATURE OF FLAME - HORAZON'S SANCTUM
► Show Spoiler


LORD ALDRIC JITAN
► Show Spoiler



AKARAT
► Show Spoiler



ACT V.

BUL-KATHOS - ASSAULT ON MOUNT ARREAT
► Show Spoiler


RIFTS:

ACT I.

THE SECRET COW LEVEL
► Show Spoiler


ACT III.

TOROJAN JUNGLES
► Show Spoiler


UBERS: MODERATE (Req. LVL 115.)

DUNGEON UBERS

ACT I.

BUYARD CHOLIK - THE BLACK ROAD
► Show Spoiler


BULL PRINCE
► Show Spoiler


ACT III.

LORD PRIMUS - RATHMA SQUARE
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BARTUC - LEGACY OF BLOOD
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ACT IV.

AZMODAN - HEART OF SIN
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THE VEILED PROPHET
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ACT II.

TRAN ATHULUA
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ACT III.

KURAST 3000 BA
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ACT IV.

THE HIGH HEAVENS
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UBERS: HARD (Req. LVL 120.)

DUNGEON UBERS

ACT I.

KABRAXIS - BANISHER OF THE LIGHT
► Show Spoiler

ACT II.

ATHULUA, THE AMAZONIAN GODDESS
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ACT III.
QOUV TSIN
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KINGDOM OF SHADOW
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ACT IV.
() JUDGEMENT DAY
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ACT V.

BAAL - EVE OF DESTRUCTION
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RIFTS

ACT I.
DUNCRAIG
► Show Spoiler

ACT III.

BASTION OF THE TRIUNE
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TEGANZE
► Show Spoiler

UBERS: VERY HARD (Req. LVL 125.)

DUNGEON UBERS

ACT II.

XAZAX - WRETCHED SANDS
► Show Spoiler


ACT III.

ASTROGHA
► Show Spoiler


VALTHEK - YSHARI SANCTUM
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GIYUA - SPIRIT WORLD
NOT ATTEMPTED YET

ATHANNA KHAN
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ACT IV.
BELIAL - REALM OF LIES
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ACT V.
GHOSTS OF OLD BREMMTOWN
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RIFTS

ACT III.
VIZ-JUN
► Show Spoiler


TOROJA
► Show Spoiler


ACT V.
FAUZTINVILLE
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UBERS: EXTREME (Req. LVL 130.)

DUNGEON UBERS
ACT III.

ARCHBISHOP LAZARUS
NOT ATTEMPTED YET - Requires a complete different gear and respec.

ACT IV.
INARIUS - THE VOID
► Show Spoiler


ULDYSSIAN
► Show Spoiler


These are ALL the uber which you can possible do as Bow druid (Included The labyrinth until T10 without problems.)

THE VERY LATE ENDGAME GEAR (For Farming)
► Show Spoiler


And that's it Everyone. Thanks for your reading, I managed to write this in time. I hope this is going to be helpful for every new players.
Credits to Nucleus42 for lots of tips and help.
Also check out my channel, for more Median XL content. PIECE!
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC1SuWa ... ounQuPGV5g
sftly
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Nice Guide Bro!
1st btw! :)
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huangyunshy
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If it is better to make some related videos, do you have any videos? :-D
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Scalewinged
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All ok but "you can't do this with bowdru, respec to smth else".. WTF?
Majhin
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nice dudu guide :mjump:
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3.5 hour Uldyssian video, evacuate the children.

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Crash
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nice guide so far. a bit text wally, but content is mostly there.

a suggestion for endgame: your quiver selection is pretty standard, not optimized as much as it could be. if you're building for IED with void-infused bow, i would go for
Cindercone
Cindercone
Arrow Quiver

Required Level: 40
Item Level: 40
1% Chance to cast level 20 Flamefront on Striking
Adds 13-25 fire damage
+20% to Fire Spell Damage
(5 to 10)% to Strength
(5 to 10)% to Dexterity
for the 10% dexterity and low level requirement. slap on 9 or 10
Elemental Ire
Elemental Ire
Occult Effigy

Cube Reagent
Cube with a Quiver to Add Bonus
Adds 40-60 Fire Damage
Adds 40-60 Lightning Damage
+10 Required Level
and your damage output is significantly higher. Alternatively,
Locust Hive
Locust Hive
Arrow Quiver

Required Level: 5
Item Level: 1
4% Chance to cast level 1 Arrow on Striking
+50 poison damage over 2 seconds
Poison Length Reduced by (15 to 25)%
gives even more space to add more of these effigies and has a weapon damage on striking proc, which is a direct damage increase.

is a more expensive route, but at endgame gear options and being able to run labs with this build, it's definitely the way to go for endgame setup.
skrig
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He-he, there is an interesting bow
Guardian of Scosglen
Guardian of Scosglen
Recurve Bow (Sacred)

Two-Hand Damage: 78 to 85
(Druid Only)
Required Level: 100
Required Dexterity: 725
Item Level: 105
Dexterity Damage Bonus: (0.19 per Dexterity)%
Adds 1 - 3 Fire, Cold and Lightning Damage to Weapon per 1 Spell Focus
1% Chance to cast level 5 Charged Strike on Striking
-(5 to 20)% to Enemy Elemental Resistances
+25% to Summoned Minion Resistances
Cannot Be Frozen
+1 Mana on Striking
+(1 to 50) Life after each Kill
Poison Length Reduced by 50%
Socketed (6)
, which requires its own configuration (for 1000 spell focus = 3000-9000 tri-ele damage). So that could be an enhancement to the guide. Same goes for
Buriza-Do Kyanon
Buriza-Do Kyanon
Heavy Crossbow (Sacred)

Two-Hand Damage: (229 - 275) to (552 - 753)
Required Level: 120
Required Strength: 614
Item Level: 120
Strength Damage Bonus: (0.11 per Strength)%
2% Chance to cast level 50 Blizzard on Striking
80% Attack Speed
+(150 to 200)% Enhanced Damage
Adds 2-(300 to 450) damage
Ignore Target's Defense
Adds 350-400 cold damage
-50% to Enemy Cold Resistance
Socketed (6)
setup, if anyone pushed it far enough (we get cold pierce from fire pierce in addition to what we already have due to the passive).
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Pinball
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Buriza is good. I have made a bow druid speed run fauzt with it before. Was using Nova Shot but now with Cascade it doesnt change much. Still same combo Buriza and Facebreaker and prob Creepy Craft armor instead of Flameskin because of Surival Instinct.

I havent tried that Scosglen bow but i dont think you can have that 1k SF and still have good other stats.
skrig
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I did not test myself. There is a druid with GoS https://tsw.vn.cz/acc/char.php?name=Test_Negatif, he has been like this for quite some time.
Gear grants him 351 spell focus, charms some, and then Survival Instinct caps it. Since he is level 142 I assume he is doing fine, unless he leveled with different items. Gear can be... better (-: