Venefici + Khloros
I initially wasn't planning on writing anything for this, but it's such a neat build that I absolutely must share it. Feel free to skip down to the line if you'd rather avoid my rambling and get straight to the attributes and skills.
So! This build primarily utilizes the Venefici path with multiple additional benefits from Khloros. The theme for it is tanking and damage reflection based off of 3 skills: Shield of Will, Focus of Will, and Cloak of Hades. I originally started off with a tanky Khloros build focusing on standing around and letting the area poison abilities do their job, but as soon as I noticed that Venefici had even more damage reflection skills, I changed my idea and delved into that path.
And just out of curiosity, ShadowLAnce, if you're still around, I was wondering if you had ever compared these two paths together while creating and modifying them. The synergy between them is just incredible.
Anyway, back to the build! The amazing fact that I found out about this is that damage reflection seems to be taken into account before anything else, meaning that whatever damage you reflect is based off of the enemy's damage before resistances and armor come into effect, and you can even completely block or dodge the damage while still reflecting it all back to the attacker (with some exceptions here and there). Because of this, you'll be focusing on pumping up resistances, absorption, avoidance, health, and total damage early on.
For your attributes, you'll only need as much Str, Int, and Dex to cover whatever your equipment requires, while the rest of the points will go into health. You might want to put some points into mana early on if your skills are reserving too much of it, but the Venefici path will provide more than enough by the end.
As for skills, these for the most part are your absolute essentials. Shield of Will, Focus of Will, and Cloak of Hades are all maxed out for maximum damage reflection, and the rest of the points are distributed around other various abilities that will enhance survivability. One point in Dark Sphere helps a bit with damage output, casting it whenever you're not using Shield of Will.
After that, it's just a matter of maxing everything out, though there are two exceptions. Drain gives plenty of Mana Leech Retaliation at level 1 to keep you covered, has negligible Life Leech Retaliation, and actually reduces your damage slightly by extending the Stun Retaliation duration, stopping enemies from attacking you. Khloros' Blessing can be maxed as well, but it only gives negligible bonuses to Slow Resistance and Less Damage from Undead. Dark Sphere is also maxed because it's a very powerful nuke which gains even more damage from your +% total damage and +% physical damage, and Energy Rift is taken because it's a decent nuke which gives you a bit of breathing room by fearing everything. This totals up to 296 skill points, reached at level 75 with no bonus skill points, leaving a bit of room for whatever else you may want to take.
With the build set up, all you need to do is get your buffs up, run into a mob of enemies, and spam your Shield of Will and Dark Sphere, using Restoration to heal back up and Energy Rift to fear everything away when necessary. Other than that, sit back and watch the torrent of numbers appear on the screen! Also, a few numbers, just for fun. You have this so long as all of the buffs are up:
78% Damage Reflected
+26% Total Damage
+27% Physical Damage
+7% Total Speed
34% Damage Absorption
+58% Physical Resistance
+70% Elemental Resistance (though you do have the -65% Fire Resistance)
+80% Pierce Resistance
34% Chance to Avoid Melee
18% Chance to Avoid Projectiles
Aaaaaand I think that's just about it. Have fun!
EDIT: Yeesh, turns out there's a ring that gives +12 to all skills. Not sure if it was intended to be in the game, but it's absolutely ridiculous. My character went from casually strolling around without many problems to completely stomping all enemies to the ground. I was able to bring all of my skills to 4 points above max, and I still had enough to get Meteor Storm and boost Venefici to 100. Level 59 currently, around 2/3 through Epic in Lilith, and I was able to skip to Legendary bosses without a scratch (given that my equipment is mostly geared towards attaining maximum health regeneration). I might have to remove it, as the game is much too easy while using it.
Last edited by Psylight; 08-01-2012 at 08:34 PM.