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I currently use a Wizard for grinding inferno at mp5 to comfortably grind exp and items. This is relatively fast but sometimes (i'm guessing due to gear) I can run into problems that will hinder the speed of my grinding.

Monks and Barbarians seem to have an easier time, or at least don't die as often.

I am wondering if there is a concrete answer as to which is the very best and easiest class to grind with within relative level ranges? Or is it all down to gearing and the way you use your class?

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5 Answers

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On low MPs, archon wizard is the fastest for xp farming. They can (as of 1.08) keep up permanent archon and roll through hordes of monsters. They are also relatively cheap to set up as you can get a 150k dps archon wizard for 10-15m that can roll through mp2 in no time. For higher MPs, you'll have to swap to a CM build, but those are way more expensive to gear up than building a decent archon wizard.

On higher MPs, the best/fastest xp farming is barbarians using the tornado/ww setup. Barbs have the best survivability on higher MP due to the fact that they are the only class that can get life steal on the belt and also they have a passive that grants 3% life steal. Also, their perma WoTB means they are completely immune to crowd control, which is absolutely necessary on higher MPs. WoTB is actually pretty bad on low MPs because you kill monsters so fast its hard to generate the amount of fury required to keep it permanently up. However, their gear is super expensive and it will cost 200+m to set up a barb that can handle mp7+ with ease.

Monks can build a tempest rush + wave of light build that can farm quite fast, this build requires 4 piece innas (to make sweeping wind cost next to nothing) as well as additional spirit regen gear to maximize wave of light spam. Its quite possible to get enough spirit regen for perm tempest rush, the trick is to use a slow attack weapon (skorn is perfect for this build). WoL becomes less useful at higher MPs due to increasingly higher monster health, but well geared monks can still farm quite fast (as is the case with every class).

This all comes down to how much gold you have. If you can afford it, barbs farm the fastest, but their gear is the most expensive. Monks are relatively cheap to gear due to one with everything, and decent int wizard gear is the cheapest to find.

Note, both the archon and WoTB builds are likely to change in the future as Blizzard has repeatedly said that they want to address the issue of perma archon and perma wotb.

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I have seen monks with similar ability, do you have any idea about their optimal builds and the strengths and weaknesses for them in comparison to other class' builds? –  Jon Hick May 20 '13 at 12:32
    
tornado/WW 200+M ??? I built mine with 20M 150K DPS and MP10 easy... not realy fast but easy ;-) –  Hystic May 23 '13 at 14:11
    
@hystic well speed + ease is the point isn't it. I can throw together a 5m monk that can survive mp10 and prick things to death with 35k DPs. Well geared barbs that tear through mp10 builds for not only survivability but also speed –  z - May 23 '13 at 14:21
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I've played all 5 characters through inferno and am now trying to farm keys on the higher monster powers.

Here are my views. Everything is both build and coin purse dependent. If you play the "gold" way to steal a phrase from game of thrones the best character, I agree, is the WWBarb. That being said my WWbarb dies quite often on MP 5 even with the high life steal afforded to him. All my gear has good resist, high strength, I'm packing a 2M Skorn with only 1250 damage and but 5% life steal on top. what I cannot afford is similar or lower quality gear with decent vitality. I could build another MP7 witch doctor for the cost of upgrading one or two pieces currently. 25K life with the lifsteal of a WWbarb means my health goes from almost empty (if I'm lucky) to full and back again 10 times in the space of a single fight.

My top pick is the Witchdoctor. Since I earned things the "Iron" way refusing to put real dollars into the auction house. I have a solid zombie bears build which can easily do MP6 for farming. MP7 with some difficulty. I sniped some good deals but it probably cost me 15-20M to build. Gear for a 0Zombie dog build is so expensive you might as well forget about it. The witch doctor I find is a good blend of skills. Grasp of the dead allows for a degree of crowd control, even against elite and rare packs. Flaming skulls lets you long range single foes (how I managed to, slowly but surly, kill uber Magda and the skeleton king. Zombie bears is the main damage dealer and lets you take down large mobs or focus them on rare packs or elites and the fights don't go on for too long. Importantly it can be spammed (with good gear) before the attacking mob has a chance to land a single blow. Spirit walk has a rune that lets you do massive damage to any creature you pass through. With a weapon that does good life steal this can be used like a full restore, and can be used a couple times a fight, as well as breaking locking effects. The Gargantuan acts as a second meat shield, is tougher than the templar and has a power attack which usefully periodically stuns foes. Including act bosses and mini-bosses. All in all the witchdoctor isn't perfect against any one foe. But I have yet to run into a foe I couldn't take down without too much trouble using some combo of skills. (Without having to switch skills out) Oh and haunt makes boss fights as you climb to 60 much much easier. Be warned though. The build tops out at MP8 unless you have bottomless pockets.

Honorable mention goes to CM wizards. I played archon wizard to level 60 but for inferno, especially since the latest patch where its monsters monsters everywhere you just need so much more crowd control then the wizard was previously capable of. I've now built a decent CM wizard which made the jump from MP1 to MP5 quite smoothly I must say. Downside is the build is incredibly gear dependent. That being said the prices on CM wizard gear goes down each day. I probably geared mine for less than 5M Downside of the CM wizard, it gets boring spamming 3 keys all the time, if you goof you die really fast, and most importantly some rare or elite packs possess affex combos which can give you a really bad time. If you hit a pack that does two of arcane enchanted, desecration, plagued, freezing, mortar or some like combo the place you need to stand for your blasts and freeze to hit are too close to the fire. Plus you can shoot your load on a single foe and be on cooldown as a pack approaches. Thats why I've seen CM wizards teleport away from lone white targets. It gets embarrassing how close one of those can come to bringing you down. Especially when you just laid a difficult rare pack low without any difficulty. On the flip side CM wizards make the shortest work of reflect damage foes I've ever seen. (The bane of many other builds). And if you are patient enough they're the most pain free way to take down any boss, even diablo.

The monk build was the smoothest and fastest in terms of gameplay in my run to 60 and through inferno. Sweeping wind is vital. Its a shame the life regen 1/2 the skills incorporate doesn't scale well. I'd need to gear up to go above MP3 at the moment. The cost of improvement gear, like a good Nats ring surprisingly costs more than gearing my CM wizard from scratch did.

And then there is the Demon hunter. Pre patch 1.05 before monster power was a thing Demon hunter was by far my favorite. Really easy kiting. Fullscreen attack with a solid spammable area kill. Now my Demon Hunter is simply no good anymore. On the higher monster powers it will take you longer to kill rare or elite packs. Period. Demon hunters are made of paper. Kite all you want with more mobs and packs not going down as fast you're in permanent retreat. You either take the elite pack down before you get cornered and die or you don't. I could invest heavy in gear but I won't because ultimately I don't think it'll make a difference if I get cornered and die in one hit or two -Hope it helps

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if you are using skorn you are probably better off with a rend build than a ww build since tornadoes depend highly on APS. –  z - Jun 13 '13 at 11:53
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It is not necessarily down to the class itself - more the setup or build you are using. For a Wizard, a common build would be Archon or CM/WW.

An obvious answer would be, the more health/life you have, the more chance you have of survival. That's correct - however, you must realise that you have to balance out your life with armour, stats and DPS to maintain a balanced character.

MP(Monster Power) does influence the difficulty of grinding in each Act you may play. But again, with the correct setup and techniques, any character shouldn't have a problem.

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So in summary it actually holds no bearing whatsoever as to the class I pick, just the way I choose to play that particular class. –  Jon Hick May 20 '13 at 12:25
    
@JonHick That's pretty much it, mate. Aslong as you know how the class works and you balance out the character, you shouldn't have any issues. That's why you should take advantage of the 4 Acts in each of the 4 difficulties - to emphasise your abilities. –  Efc Seany May 20 '13 at 12:36
    
I disagree with that summary. Grinding speed/efficiency is largely a function of abilities that impact the character's ability to move faster, and the ability to kill "trash" enemies in a single attack. Some classes can effectively boost their movement constantly (such as a WW barb or a TR monk) in a sufficiently target-rich environment, giving them a notable edge in grinding efficiency. –  Beofett May 21 '13 at 15:54
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I play demon hunter now and if you master the skills and play it good its a very strong class but it is expensive but if you have more chars it is nice to try. It is diffucult but that makes it fun and if youre cornered you can escape with vault or shadow walk in most of the times

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the monk is my recommendation because he is the faster at hiting and can use weapons

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I'll probably shock you, but every class can use weapons... –  Novarg Jan 14 at 22:12
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