Any builds built around leeching and dmg reduction?


New member
Sep 7, 2006
Any builds built around leeching and dmg reduction?

I looked over the build thread but I didn't see any builds that said anything about leeching, etc.

I'm toying around with getting around 30% health leeching and major dmg reduction. Basically a tank that stays alive by sucking the life out of it's enemies.

oh, and I'm pretty new to assassins. I only played one a few years back and only got her to act2, nightmare. So I'm no expert.

Anyway, any help would be appreciated.
It would help us if you could tell what type of assasin you are playing - e.g. trapper, martial..

If it's a martial artist, you might be interested by the cobra strike skill, which grant huge leech on the third charge even at level 1 - 80% dual health/mana leech to be exact.

Another great assasin skill is fade, which gives 1% damage reduction by skill level, plus the stated elemental resists.

Other skills that can help you "tank" (well be safer at least) are mind blast and cloak of shadow.
Natalyas set (weapon, helm, boots, armor) gives you 30% damage reduction and 14% dual leech (and other good bonusses). Although I'm not sure if the armor of the set is tank-worthy (it doesn't have a really good def).

The combination of Tiger strike + cobra strike charge up skills can give you enormous leech too.
Yes, it does not have huge def, but this build you're thinking of really works! Try filling nat set (claw, armor and hem) with 40/15 ias jewels... Get cannot be frozen by ravenfrost and a little more life leech and +1 skill with a bk ring. I highly recommend using mara's and string of ears too! String will give you another tasty 8% ll plus some damage reduction! My assassin wore a tucs (with 40/15 ias) too.

I'm saying this because that was my past ladder assassin build. I maxed dragon claw, claw mastery, phoenix strike and claws of thunder. Fade, shadow master, mind blast, cloak of shadows, weapon block and death sentry are nice skills to get too! My assassin had 1 point in MB, DS, CoS and Fade, so i put some points in Shadow master and weapon block.

Use holy freeze merc! (crowd control - use 3rd charge in phoenix strike for that pourpose too)

You'll notice that, not only this build works (great!) for playing even in hell mode, but you'll be abble to tank strong enemies without using cobra strike for leeching (wich takes some time to charge up - you'll get enough mana and life steal without it: just keep hitting!). I was cappable of tanking Dclone (the one that "...walks the earth...") without dieing in a 8-player game using just some super life potions...

My sin back then used a nice rare glove (+2 martial arts, life steal, ias). I highly recommend using dracul's glove.
Thanks for the reply and info Elven. I think that you've already done what I'm thinking about.

I haven't made a Sin yet, but I will one of these days soon.

I might go a bit more defensive (e.g. full Fade, CoS, etc.) and use a defience merc. Also add in a few items with life leech to go with Nat's set and maybe I can pull down 30% life leech. I'd have to find at least one, or maybe two, high dmg attack skills, so I can really leech some big numbers. Max resist in Hell might be a problem though. Fade won't cover everything. :(

Like I said earlier though, I don't know very much at all about Sin skills and dynamics. All I have are dusty memories from a few years ago. But I'll have fun thinking about a new build. :grin:
I know of several builds based on Damage Reduction and Leeching... but none of them are Sins. To be honest, Sins aren't ideally suited to the task. They have the only skill-based source of DR% in the game (Fade), which is a point in their favor. They also have the most skill-based leech in the game (Cobra Strike), too. Still, for DR builds, PDR works a ton better than DR%, and Cobra is sub-optimal because it requires multiple successive hits to trigger the leech (which means you spend long amounts of time leeching very little before you finally get the huge leech to trigger).

If you're really interested in a high-leech build, check out the Hunger Bear. For something slightly different, I wrote a guide for a Paladin called The Abbott that is based on a similar idea- instead of Damage Reduction and Leech, he relies on Damage Reduction and Regeneration to achieve truly mindblowing results. The nice thing about the Abbott is that it even works against unleechables (such as Skeletons).

If you do want to make a DR/Leechsin, I'd recommend getting some ridiculous PDR gear instead of focusing on DR%. While DR% is capped at 50%, you can easily get PDR over 100 (up to 46 from Helm, 43 from Armor, 43 from Shield, 25 from Amulet, and 11 from each ring). The biggest problem facing PDR builds is how to max their resistances after getting all that PDR (because Resists are much better than MDR), but an Assassin already has the easiest resist solution in the game at her disposal in Fade (which also adds some supplemental DR% for those super-hard hits that make it past your PDR).

I'd probably gear my DR/Leechsin with a Circlet and Amulet of Life Everlasting (with two Sols stuffed in the Circlet), a Quadruple-sol'd Armor (or a Sol'd Iron Pelt/Gladiator's Bane/Arkaine's Valor), a PDiamond Gerke's, and a Nature's Peace. Max out your Fade and DTalon, and equip an AmnAmnAmnAmnAmnAmn Phase Blade and some good Myrmidion Greaves (Shadowdancers or upped Gores). Voila, you've got yourself an unstoppable reducing/leeching machine. You'll have up to 115 PDR, up to 43% base resists in Hell after the Anya Quests (easily maxed from there using Charms), and 42% life leech. You'd also still have your gloves, second ring, and belt slot open for more resists, PDR, +skills, or whatever. If you really want to get silly, throw on some Drac's gloves (it'll trigger a ton with your superfast kicks, and Life Tap lets you leech off of unleechables).
assasin arent ment to get hit...
apart from them not being palas etc
things like cos fade traps mb etc mean that you shouldnt need things like huge dr and life :rolleyes:
Well, continuing what i said b4:

If you are not happy with the damage reduction you get from nat's set + string (40% minimum ~ 45% maximum), you can always use claw+shield and equip yourself with a SS... However, that is way over the 50% cap, and you can cast Fade to reach that amount... Resists are not a problem, even more if you have a anni and a torch.... Nat's set is one of the sets that grant you more resists (up to 20% in helm, up to 25% cold and light on boots, some nice poison resist in armor plus the 50% all after u equip whole set). Adding mara's (20~30% all), anya quests, charms and fade, you can EASILY max them out in hell.

Leeching is no problem too: Full set's 14% mana steal is more than you'll need. Life leech can get to 26% without difficulty (14 from set + 4 from a bk + 8 from string of ears)... You can easily raise that values if you wear another bk ring and replace the jewel in helm for a cham rune... You can even replace both rings for good leech rings (up to 8% leeching each). You can insert pskulls or AMN runes in you weapons (Remember, a Bartuc's have up to 9% life steal: I dont think it needs more. It needs more damage!)... And nat's mark is (IMO) the best claw in the game!!! Those +200% ed damage to demons and to undead cover almost all the monsters in the game and that damage do not displays at character laying screen... Plus, that claw has Ignore target's defense and high speed... If you hit fast enough, you wont die!

The reason i used holy freeze merc is that the enemies will become slower to walk towards you and to hit you, so: this and Cloak of Shadows makes you abble to prevent being surrounded and kill some foes even b4 they hit you! Defiance is good, but the defense you get wont save you from crowds... When you play a melee sin you discover that (i'll make this as an exemple) in cow levels is so good when those frozen orb sorcs cast orbs on the same group of enemies you beating up....

Since my build uses claws of thunder as main atack, infinity merc is way the best option, folowed by BOTD (huge damage and life steal)! Equip him with Some upped shaftstop and vampiregaze for 50% DR in your merc plus some good life steal! Another good option is equip him with BOTD, Dream helm, good bramble an you max out venom skill. You can even use a bramble to pre-buff venom... dream helm will add holy shock aura to increase lightning damage in you enemies...

Those are some options for you to think about...
wow, lots of good info guys. It'll take me awhile to absorb it all.

I guess I'll have to start looking at PDR items as well as just DR% items. I didn't even consider PDR items ... heck, I didn't even notice them before.

What does BOTD stand for?

A Holy Freeze merc sounds good. Slowing down monsters seems more important than extra defense. Though both would be nice! lol

Elven: How many pts did you put into CoS? 1 pt?

Well, idk if what i've done b4 would be ideal... I spent 1 point only in CoS, but maybe you should consider spending more points for both increasing the duration of the spell and more defense reduction of the enemies...

BOTD = Breath of the Dying

[FONT=arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]Breath of the Dying

[/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]6 Socket Weapons

[/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]Vex + Hel + El + Eld + Zod + Eth[/SIZE][/FONT]

[FONT=arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]50% Chance To Cast Level 20 Poison Nova When You Kill An Enemy[/SIZE][/FONT]
[FONT=arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1] Indestructible[/SIZE][/FONT]
[FONT=arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1] +60% Increased Attack Speed[/SIZE][/FONT]
[FONT=arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1] +350-400% Enhanced Damage (varies)[/SIZE][/FONT]
[FONT=arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1] +200% Damage To Undead[/SIZE][/FONT]
[FONT=arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1] -25% Target Defense[/SIZE][/FONT]
[FONT=arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1] +50 To Attack Rating[/SIZE][/FONT]
[FONT=arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1] +50 To Attack Rating Against Undead[/SIZE][/FONT]
[FONT=arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1] 7% Mana Stolen Per Hit[/SIZE][/FONT]
[FONT=arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1] 12-15% Life Stolen Per Hit (varies)[/SIZE][/FONT]
[FONT=arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1] Prevent Monster Heal[/SIZE][/FONT]
[FONT=arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1] +30 To All Attributes[/SIZE][/FONT]
[FONT=arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1] +1 To Light Radius[/SIZE][/FONT]
[FONT=arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1] Requirements -20%

lordy! That's quite the weapon. Just have to get a zod. lol

Good luck. The odds of a legit Zod dropping are pretty much nil.

The best chance of dropping a Zod goes to Baal and Diablo in their quest drops- a 1-in-2,987,183 shot (basically 1-in-three million). The best monster to farm for Zods would be Haphaesto- he's a quick run, and has a nice 1-in-3,072,531 chance of dropping a Zod. If you prefer killing normal monsters, most of the ghostly monsters (Gloams-types, Doom Caster-types, and Wraith-types) share the best chance to drop a Zod, at 1-in-19,971,454 (yes, that's almost 1-in-twenty million). If you'd rather go for quantity than quality, Hell Cows have a 1-in-40,967,085 chance of dropping a Zod. If you kill 1000 cows in each run, it'll only take you 41,000 runs to get that Zod. If each run takes 5 minutes, and you play literally nonstop 24 hours a day, you should have that Zod in a mere 142 days.

If you'd rather rush Hellforge for your high runes, things are a lot brighter. Thanks to cubing, you'll average a Gul every 6 runs. Since you need 256 Guls to equal a Zod, that's a mere 1536 Hellforge Rushes to get a Zod. If you do multiple-instance rushing and rush 6 characters a day (one rusher, one duriel mule, 6 rushees), that's 256 days for your Zod. Maybe if you get lucky you could get it done in 240 days, instead.

So in other words, don't give up hope! Legit Zods really aren't that hard to come by, after all!:flip:

You can try to trade any high rune for a zod when you have all the other runes and weapon to make the runeword ready... Way easier!
You can try to trade any high rune for a zod when you have all the other runes and weapon to make the runeword ready... Way easier!
Of course, it's also way less legit, because any Zod that can be obtained for the cost of another High Rune is a dupe.

Psst... a Dragon Talon build can be done in a similar way to an Abbot. There are a few differences, but the basic theory is the same. Load up on PDR, MDR, then pick a weapon (Stormlash, ideally) that will take care of everything else.

There is a post at the Amazon Basin which covers this well.

iKe2000@AB said:
Actually I think a DTalon/BF/DS Sin is one of the best candidates for a massive PDR/MDR build. And when I say massive, I mean in the realms of 100-140 PDR / 75-90 MDR. This is due to the relative soft equipment restrictions, as typically you only need a good weapon and a good pair of boots to be effective with such a build.

Note: %DR on Stormshield, Shako, Verdungo's etc is much less important here, as it is only applied after PDR. This is basically the same as Resists (%DR can be considered as Physical Resistance), which means that if you have oodles of MDR, you can pretty much walk around with poor Resists and still survive.

How many equipment slots you can devote to PDR/MDR depends on how many desirable mods you can fit on your weapon, boots & gloves (I will also allow gloves, since there's not too much in terms of damage reduction potential there). If out of those 3 pieces of equipment you can put together CB, OW, elemental damage, CTC effects, leech, IAS (dependent on your weapon type), you can be an immortal pillar of mass destruction.

Some of the 'dream' equipment for this set up (brackets indicate sockets):

Artisan's / Jeweler's Circlet of Life Everlasting (Sol + Sol + Sol)
Shadow Circlet of Life Everlasting - you have to hope that you get lucky at Larzuk's to socket some Sol runes
Vampire Gaze (Sol): if you can get PDR elsewhere, the healthy MDR & leech makes this an awesome headpiece to wear.

Gladiator's Bane (Sol) / Iron Pelt (Sol) - Gladiator's Bane would also give you CBF, freeing up a Ring slot
Jeweler's XXX of Amicae (Sol + Sol + Sol + Sol)

Dwarf Star x 2: Fire absorb, good MDR, life - nuff said

Shadow Amulet of Life Everlasting

Jeweler's Monarch of Amicae (Sol + Sol + Sol + Sol) - Monarch is the lightest 4 socket shield
Gerke's Sanctuary (Sol)

String of Ears

For the above listed items, choice will obviously come down to what you have available. If that is not a problem, then balancing amounts of PDR & MDR may depend on which type of damage you find more threatening to yourself.

Now if you already have enough PDR but a little lacking in MDR, you can of course socket some Mals instead of Sols. But whether anybody has that many Mal runes sitting useless on a mule remains to be seen.

My current set up of Stormlash, Gore Rider Myrmidon Greaves and Dracul's Grasp means that I've covered basically everything I need to be an efficient killer, meaning all other slots can be used for damage reduction. The only thing missing, mana leech, is readily available on the Vampire Gaze too. The speed of the Scourge and the IAS already present means I'm already at the 3 frame follow up for Dragon Talon without Burst of Speed.

Note: if there's no obvious socket option in the weapon, you can always go for a Perfect Skull. Its 3% mana leech is plenty for a cheap skill like Dragon Talon.

This sort of build has various forms of damage to deal with immunities, good crowd killer in DS, tank in the Shadow Warrior (I use mine to cast CoS & DS), CoS/MB for crowd control, massive damage vs single targets and BF as a ranged option & when IM is around - ON TOP of near item based immortality.

Expensive & specific to make, yes, but you'll have one hell of a PvM build to brag about. :)

The other slots not mentioned - Draculs would be a great choice for gloves, Up'd Gores for boots, and Stormlash for a weapon (or one of the many kicker weapons - just add CB). Combined with Death Sentry, this provides a lot of leech, good potential to raise resists, and a decent amount of flexibility.
So are resistances not that important when you have very high levels of PDR and MDR? I'd still like to have 50%+ resistances in Hell, but maybe that's not necessary.
So are resistances not that important when you have very high levels of PDR and MDR? I'd still like to have 50%+ resistances in Hell, but maybe that's not necessary.
Resistances are far more important than MDR. When you consider that most elemental attacks deal roughly 2-3 times as much damage as comparable physical attacks, you'd need roughly 200 MDR to equal the value of 100 PDR. Then, when you consider that it's a lot harder to get MDR than PDR (there are no 25 MDR amulets or circlets or 15 PDR armors/shields, and Mals are a lot more expensive than Sols)... well, it's pretty much impossible to stack enough MDR to make a difference. Resists, on the other hand, are really, really easy to come by. I'd say that 75% resist-all will do about as much good as 120 MDR or so, but it's so much easier to get the resists (especially for an Assassin, who can get 60+% from Fade).

I generally consider MDR to be virtually useless. Resists are much better and cheaper.

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