- Clan Rank
- May 5, 2016
Objective: To give an overview of the build and playstyle of the Witch Doctor Jade Harvester set.
Pros: High Area of Effect damage (not to be confused with Area Damage) that makes quick work of grouped up enemies. Great for elite packs with a decent amount of trash or larger elite packs.
Cons: High difficulty - required to keep up two debuffs on all mobs for them to take the maximum amount of damage. Requires a bit of skill in timing maneuvers through mobs with Spirit Walk to cast Soul Harvest.
You can use the Haunting Girdle belt (which grants Haunt the ability to cast 2 spirits instead of 1) or the Belt of Transcendence (summons fetishes with each cast that deals damage, up to 15). The Haunting Girdle will deal twice as much damage with your Haunt casts, but do not trigger the set bonus twice, while some choose the Belt of Transcendence to have Fetishes stack Bane of the Stricken faster.
When Soloing, it is recommended you use Unity on both you and your follow - either in the cube or wearing it, to replace the Convention of Elements.
You will first start off by casting Locust Swarm. Since this ability will spread far and wide and takes a moment to do so, this will allow time to get everything else in order before the big finish. Next you will want to cast haunt on ALL enemies around and group them with Piranhado to keep them off you while doing this. After all enemies in a small-ish area (about 30 yards across) have haunt on them, use spirit walk to get in the middle of the fray and cast Soul Harvest. If targets are affected by both Locust Swarm and Haunt, the Soul Harvest should do an incredible amount of damage. Of course, all through this time, you need to maintain constant uptime on your Horrify:Frightening Aspect for survivability and crowd control.
How Things Work Together:
Soul Harvest will be your primary damage dealing spell in this build. Ordinarily, this spell is chosen for utility, but because of the 6-piece set bonus of the Jade Harvester set, it is transformed into a devastating spell. Thanks to the 4-piece bonus from the Jade Harvester set, you receive all the benefits of the runes at once. Because of this, I select the “Swallow Your Soul” rune for Soul Harvest to turn its damage into poison. Soul Harvest also benefits from frequent resets thanks to the 4-piece bonus from casts of Haunt and Locust Swarm (but mostly Haunt). You will see the most damage come from alignments of Soul Harvest casts and the cold cycle from Convention of Elements.
It is important to note that there are two major DoTs (of four) that will eventually become consumed by Soul Harvest, so reapplication where appropriate is critical.
Of the two, Haunt is your strongest DoT with an astonishing 4000% weapon damage over 12 seconds. Creeping Death will lengthen this time to 1 hour, and Quetzacoatl in the cube then shortens it to 30 minutes (but the total damage dealt remains the same as if were 60 minutes). While some builds suggest the Resentful Spirits rune on Haunt, I highly suggest using the Haunting Girdle for the same effective spread of haunt and instead take the Poisoned Spirit rune. This adds a 20% additive damage bonus against affective enemies and is even effective for the entire party. Since it has a cost of only 50 mana, it is your primary spam for the build whenever Soul Harvest is on cooldown.
The second DoT in the lineup is Locust Swarm, dealing 1040% weapon damage and spreads more easily than Haunt thanks to the Pestilence rune (acquired through the Vile Hive mojo). Since we gain Pestilence from the Vile Hive, we will actively use the Cloud of Insects rune for 25% damage reduction. You can, in theory, swap this skill for Zombie Dogs:Leeching Beasts and running the Wormwood in the cube instead of The Furnace for speed runs. If you choose to do this, consider switching out the Spirit Vessel passive for Fierce Loyalty to gain movement speed bonuses and increase the healing benefits from your Zombie Dogs.
While the DoT from Piranhado can be considered part of the Jade ‘consumption’, it is mostly used for its crowd control and its innate damage increase against affected enemies. This offers additional increased damage from Bane of the Trapped.
As mentioned previously, the most important passive of the Jade build is Creeping Death, which takes the duration of Haunt, Locust Swarm, and the damage amplification debuff from Piranhado from several seconds to an hour. The Quetzalcoatl shortens that duration to 30 minutes, doubling the damage of those dots upon their consumption with Soul Harvest. Consumption?! Yes! The 6-piece set bonus consumes 150 seconds worth of that DoT’s damage, and it is because of that bonus alone is why Quetzacoatl is a must-have.
Now Soul Harvest might be a bit of a lengthy cooldown at first glance, but thanks to casting Haunt and the passive Grave Injustice this is no longer a problem. For each enemy killed in a 20-yard radius, Grave Injustice will reduce your cooldowns by one second AND replenishes your health and mana by 1%. This does synergize with pickup-radius so it is a good idea to obtain that stat in the secondaries of your gear.
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