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Diablo III class guide

The Monk

The Monk is a great damage dealer, using plenty of sweeping attacks to take care of crowds. However, the Monk is a bit of a paper crouching tiger – he won’t be soaking up much damage for the group. Spirit is the resource the Monk is working with.  It’s generated when the Monk attacks with a primary move, such as Fists of Thunder or Way of a Hundred Fists, and spent on every other move. Spirit is slow to build and can be spent rather quickly. You’ll have to show some restraint and save your Spirit reserves for groups of monsters who would tear you apart without some fancy martial arts.

No matter the build, the Breath of Heaven healing AoE is a godsend when you find yourself in hot water - especially if you pair it with the Circle of Scorn rune. Also, picking the Exalted Soul passive skill gives you a much needed 100 extra Spirit.

You’ll want to find equipment that boosts Dexterity since that's the Monk’s main damage dealing stat. Adding in a bit of Vitality to keep you going is a smart idea. You’ll also want to find some equipment that generates Spirit over time. Spirit accumulates pretty slowly and it's nice to have it build up when you’re not fighting.


Solo Build

  • Primary: Deadly Reach (Piercing Trident)
  • Secondary: Lashing Tail Kick (Sweeping Armada)

Action Bar:

  • Mystic Ally (Water Ally)
  • Breath of Heaven (Circle of Scorn)
  • Dashing Strike (Flying Sidekick)
  • Sweeping Wind (Master of Wind)

Passive Skills:

Exalted Soul, Seize the Initiative, Transcendence


Deadly Reach with Piercing Trident can be one of the most effective moves the Monk has to deal with crowds - it has the best reach of all the primary attacks. If you're getting overwhelmed by the demonic hordes, Lashing Tail Kick with the Sweeping Armada rune is a great way to create some breathing room. Sweeping Wind is a great damage-dealing aura - every time you connect with a melee attack it refreshes. Dashing Strike is a great tool to close some distance and keep Sweeping Wind going.



Group Build

  • Primary: Crippling Wave (Concussion)
  • Secondary: Tempest Rush (Tailwind)

Action Bar:

  • Cyclone Strike (Implosion)
  • Breath of Heaven (Circle of Life)
  • Dashing Strike (Flying Side Kick)
  • Mantra of Retribution (Retaliation)

Passive Skills:

Exalted Soul, Resolve, Chant of Resonance


In groups, the Monk's strength lies in Mobility and crippling enemies. Crippling Wave with the Concussion rune can daze enemies and reduce the damage they deal to your friends. Tempest Rush and Dashing Strike give you the mobility needed to save an embattled ally or grab a much-needed health orb for the group. Cyclone Strike can pull some demons off casters in the heat of battle. Mantras are also very important for group play, since they affect the entire party. Mantra of Retribution isn’t the right tool for every job, but Chant of Resonance can make sure your mantras last longer.


Boss Build

  • Primary: Way of the Hundred Fists (Hands of lightning)
  • Secondary: Wave of Light (Wall of Light)

Action Bar:

  • Mystic Ally (Water Ally)
  • Breath of Heaven (Circle of Scorn)
  • Exploding Palm (The Flesh is Weak)
  • Mantra of Evasion (Hand Target)

Passive Skills:

Exalted Soul, The Guardian’s Path, Sixth Sense

Way of the Hundred Fists is the Monk’s most damaging primary attack and it’s a great way to tenderize some bosses. Wave of Light is a heavy hitting cast-and-go spell perfect for taking out groups of minions or the boss summoning them. Casting Mystic Ally is a great way to create another target and deal some damage without much risk. Breath of Heaven can pull your butt out of the fire while dealing a little damage along the way with the Circle of Scorn rune. And Exploding Palm is good for a little bleeding DoT. You’ll also want to crank up your ability to dodge attacks, so Mantra of Evasion along with The Guardian’s Path and Sixth Sense passive skills will make sure the only thing the boss hits is the air.


Best Follower

The Templar. Most classes use the Templar for his tanking ability, but most Monks will appreciate his healing powers. His Heal and Loyalty will keep the Monk going through most tough fights. When the Templar hits 20 you’ll want to grab the Inspire ability, it will really help get the Spirit flowing. 

10 comments

  • Zid23 - March 3, 2014 10 p.m.

    Thnx for the note Untarr... I just started playing D3 on the Xbox and I have a level 26 hardcore Wizard
  • TheAwesomeOne - March 13, 2013 9:50 p.m.

    For the Monk Solo Build, you can't have Dashing Strike and Sweeping Wind at the same time. Also, their is no Mantra for the Solo Build.
  • khrxs - April 12, 2014 5:22 p.m.

    You can have them at the same time
  • ncurry2 - May 30, 2012 10:59 a.m.

    I guess its the great thing about d3 is there are a lot of different playstyles. But as a lvl 60 in act 2 of inferno barbarian, I completely disagree with both builds.
  • niederman - May 30, 2012 10:16 a.m.

    Just a quick note here For the witch doctor solo build Acid cloud is not a secondary skill And acid cloud and spirit barrage cannot both be equipped at the same time. If they COULD, That WOULD be a great build.
  • niederman - May 30, 2012 10:27 a.m.

    Oh yeah, Elective mode Didn't read that Now I feel dumb...
  • Deustaitan - October 7, 2014 12:20 a.m.

    It can drain your mana real quickly, though.
  • Mooshon - May 30, 2012 6:16 a.m.

    Sounds good. Now if I could only get it to run without it slowing to a 20 fps crawl after 10 minutes...
  • Untarr - May 29, 2012 8:13 p.m.

    I agree with the wizard builds here. Good stuff that revolves around a theme or idea and executes effectively. Also note to anyone reading this, standing still to channel spells in higher difficulties (late NM early hell is where it starts) is a great way to die fast. You'll find yourself switching to the more "fire and forget" spells that allow you to keep moving because the mobs just hit too hard. Spells like Hydra/Blizzard
  • zombi3grim - May 29, 2012 7:55 p.m.

    I love the Witch Doctor!

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