Both my witch doctor & wizard are just about level 60 and I am preparing to go try out inferno. I like the casters so much I can't decide which one should be my main. My friends (all melee characters) tell me that act 2 inferno is significantly harder then act 1, so I should be gearing for act 2. I have several questions about the gear for both toons:

My inferno build for wizard: http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/wizard#UlQRSO!YdW!bZZbZc

My inferno build for witch doctor: http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/witch-doctor#afRXdT!bZW!acabZc

1) Are the desirable stats for both wizard and witch doctor roughly the same? For example, should the wizard be getting more + resist all to take advantage of energy armor + prismatic armor? The reason I ask is because I might want to switch my main from wizard to witch doctor, and I don't want to spend more gold to re-gear.

2) What sort of stats should I be aiming for to be able to survive? I see people saying that melee char require at least +500 resist all, and 30K health, but I am a caster that does not want to get one shotted. Obviously, the more def stats the better, but what should I be aiming for?

3) How much damage is an average number for a wizard and witch doctor? Is it more effective to be going a 2H, or 1H + offhand?

4) I have a budget of 1.5 million. Would that be adequate to gear one character for act 2 inferno?

  • .I don't think 1500k is enough to handle act 2. I'd guesstimate that my e is worth about 5000k, and while I am able to handle most of act 2, it is not easy. And i still get oneshotted by belial although im a barb speccing defensive skills.
    – Alderath
    Commented Jun 8, 2012 at 16:03
  • How much do you need to spend, and roughly how much per armor item? Commented Jun 8, 2012 at 16:07
  • So would it be better as a caster to just be a glass cannon? Since a def barb is getting one shotted, no point in a caster to try to get def stats. Commented Jun 8, 2012 at 16:12
  • No, that's just Belial and not all casters get one shot. You wanna switch up your mages skills though. After hounding my mage buddy forever he finally did, all defensive skills except for poison hydra and homing arcane missle, and he does wayyyyyyyyy better. Also you should look to be spending 500k+ per item for act 2 inferno.
    – Dave
    Commented Jun 8, 2012 at 16:14
  • 2
    Is the gear for both a witch doctor and wizard interchangeable, or would a witch doctor want certain stats that wizards wouldn't want? Commented Jun 8, 2012 at 16:21

7 Answers 7


Here are some general things I've observed from playing with a friend who runs both a Wizard and Witch Doctor (both glass cannon builds).

  1. Wizard damage sources relies more on critical damage rather than straight up dps, so favors not only int but also crit.
  2. Witch doctors relies on dps and mob control, and thus does not care as much about crit.

Since int + crit gear is a lot more expensive than int gear, and since your budget is only 1.5m, I'd highly recommend going the WD route.

Just from a few searches in the AH, I can piece together a fairly decent WD that can tackle up to a2 inferno(~40k dps and 25k health) just by going for the int + vit gears totaling roughly 1.5m. If you want to survive beyond act 2, you'll have to spend 1-2 mill (minimum) per piece of gear and go for the really good stuff with res all along with int/vit.

  • 7
    Why do wizards rely on +crit dmg more then the witch doctor? Are there particular spells that the wizard use that really benefit from it? What is the build of your friend's witch doctor? Commented Jun 8, 2012 at 16:51
  • @user1277607 its because the wizard is more of a cast and run type character so you want to do damage in a very spikey way (high spike damage then run) where the WD is more of a slow and control type that can snare and surround enemies while grinding them down with DPS
    – l I
    Commented Jun 8, 2012 at 21:09
  • 1
    would you suggest to focus on +critDmg or +critChance? Commented Jun 8, 2012 at 22:01
  • @user1277607 both if you can afford it, but you'll need to figure it out yourself since which one to get depends on the character's gear. I see a lot of people like to put a high end emerald into their weapon to get high bonus crit damage
    – l I
    Commented Jun 8, 2012 at 22:24
  • Do you know if your hydra benefits from +critChance and +critDmg? Commented Jun 8, 2012 at 23:55

Just beat act 3 inferno as a wizard, cant talk about wdoctor, heres a useful tip and rule to stand by. Act 1 needs about 400 resistences across the board, act 2 is 700 or so act 3 900 to 1100 and act 4 is prolly around 1200 plus, please note that includes the bonus from energy armour.

Life on hit is also big if you can get it as is a socket for critical damage, preferably with base critical and high int on weapon, you want at least 33k dps to beat the first 2 acts with a fair amount of ease. Archeon is also a very good option, as is diamond skin, a hydra of some sort is also good for kiting.

As for the money it really depends if you happen to find the right gear at the right price, it is possible to gear for act 1 and 2 with 1.5 mill or so gold you want to look for things with 60 all resist at least and ideally as much critical hit chance, and damage, as much armour as possible and as much vitality and int as possible, but remember health without resistence is pretty much useless


As a ranged class, make sure that you have runspeed on your boots - won't help you to outrun fast soul lashers, but it is very useful in a lot of places. Try to also get Life on Hit from gear, it works way better than life leech (80% penalty) in Inferno. I also like life regen so my health refills while running around between fights, and it can make a difference in those long drawn out fights where you survive with a few hp.

Don't forget the importance of defensive skills; and using Elective mode if nobody pointed that out yet.

So, a shopping list of gear attributes for Wizard may look like:

  • Intelligence
  • Vitality
  • Higher Run Speed
  • Resist All
  • Armor
  • Life on Hit
  • Life Regen

To raise DPS once you have the basic survivability needs covered, you should consider:

  • Critical Chance
  • Critical Damage
  • Attack Speed (note: this can increase resource usage depending on your skills, so unlike melee classes it is lower priority to get AS for wiz/wd)

Post-1.0.4; Witch Doctor pets now scale with their Vitality to make them viable in later difficulties. Their desired attributes are similar to that of wizard above, with some caveats:

  • Pet builds should aim for balance between Vit and Armor/Res; as pets benefit from (fixed amount + )35% of player hp and all their damage reductions. This implies that a build focused solely around pets may go for a bit of extra Vit that is more expensive to add, to balance it with the DR from armor/res.
  • Life on Hit doesn't help pets; but life regen does (with Fierce Loyalty). A WD caster build would prefer LoH for self healing, minion build should prefer regen instead.

Note that there are of course some stats more useful for specific builds; e.g. CritChance for the CM (Critical Mass) wizard build.

  • I saw this video and it looks like you could achieve very nice results with Critical Chance, too. youtube.com/watch?v=CS4LSZy6qik
    – bevacqua
    Commented Jun 10, 2012 at 3:03
  • Your disclaimer makes your advice pointless.
    – Robotsushi
    Commented Jun 11, 2012 at 6:03
  • @Robotsushi: How does that make it wrong? I'm giving my opinions, and I do have a monk in Inferno act 1 but wizard isn't there yet. If you see Valadil's answer, he mentioned Armor which I forgot to emphasize but otherwise its the same; so I am not giving wrong recommendations.
    – Alok
    Commented Jun 11, 2012 at 17:41
  • Also, whoever downvoted: please mention why, so I can fix the answer.
    – Alok
    Commented Jun 11, 2012 at 17:42
  • I down voted and clearly stated the reason. I do not find your answer to be valid based on a lack of experience. Until you have played a wizard through act 2 of inferno your advice is not based on experience.
    – Robotsushi
    Commented Jun 11, 2012 at 18:25

I am currently about half way through act2 inferno with my wizard. I have been experimenting with more and less defensive builds.

One thing that I am sure of now, is that high resist-all is not the answer! even with 1k resist-all, death happens all to quickly. What seems to get most people through, and what has worked for me is the following:

  • 30 to 40k dps self buffed
  • Some (200 to 300) resist all
  • 30 to 40k health
  • A GREAT kiting build (what you use is up to you)

The trick is to be quick on your feet, and simply avoid as much as you can. Unfortunately inherently fast champion packs with "Fast" added will destroy you regardless, so when you meet them, simply kite them to a corner of the map, and never go there again :)

Good luck out there in the Inferno.

  • You don't need 40K HP. I cleared Act 2 Inferno on my Wizard with 17K hp and force armor. Commented Jul 21, 2012 at 19:03

Looking at your witch doctor build, I use the pets build.

Witch Doctor Pet Build

Now I cruised through Act1 INF with only 27,000 life, 3,000 Armor and 11,000 DPS with about 200 per Resist. I use a one handed axe and a shield right now which helps with the occasional block

I did get my butt kicked a little in Act 2 by the Lacuni Huntress just because of speed but with 6 pets and the Templar shooting from a range was easier then working with my Demon Hunter.

Still working on Act 3.

Edit: I dropped Big Bad Voodoo for Grasp of The Dead (Raining Corpses)


As wizard in A1 Inferno I'm doing fine with completely ignoring resistances - you will die occasionally, but that will happen no matter what you do, unless you play and gear hardcore-style. Some affixes will just do that (such as the bane of hydra builds: invulnerable minions paired with other nasties).

As for 3), while there are some wizards advocating 2h, there is not much point to it due to the fact that wizard (and witch doctor) offhands have damage amounts that bring 1h weapons plus offfhand close to, if not equal to, 2h, but with the additional perks such as int or crit from two slots. It is fairly cheap to get a starting set - on EU, 800 dps 1hands are as low as 100k and below, and offhands with a 90-200ish damage range are even cheaper. Unfortunately, the AH doesn't allow to look for damage range on offhands - which is quite absurd, as it's by far the most powerful stat for them - so you'll need to manually glance over. One stat worth looking for there is crit chance as well - 7% crit is a rather big number of damage added, yet is available for very cheap prices.

There's cheap deals for other slots as well if you're willing to search (until the inevitable nerf, 15% ASI rings with 70ish int are awesome, yet available for 30k); I'm right now at 24k unbuffed damage and I've not spent more than 500k on gear yet.

Another thing worth looking for if you're budget-conscious and using a kiting build: Hammers Jammers pants. They're level 41 legendaries, and comparatively decent ones are available in the 100k range. While you'll obviously get a lot less int and vit than from level 60 pants, they have a far more important perk: Additional run speed, usually 6 or 7%. This is very noticable and will help your survival while kiting far more than any realistic amount of vit or resist. There are, of course, other legendaries with run speed (such as Lacuni bracers) - but the useful ones tend to go in the 1M+ range.


I made it to act 2 Inferno on my wizard last night, and got rofl stomped by pretty much every elite (didn't really have any issues with act 1 Inferno). I'm working on re-gearing as well, and this is what I'm looking for.

Resist All
Run Speed
Life on Hit

I picked up a high dps 2-hander when I got into act 1 for cheap (80k 1000 dps) but I really want to switch back to 1-hander + source for the extra stats & sockets. Unfortunatly, I need to build up more capitol before I can purchase anything to move on with right now - hopefully by next weekend I'll have the funds to move into act 2 inferno.

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