Martial arts assassin guide – by Frank Klam

Martial arts assassin guide – by Frank Klam

Martial Arts now functions as Melee spell caster making us want to focus on +skillers, increasing our chances to hit and ability to stick to targets while trying to be as beefy as possible. Weapon damage, ED, CB, DS is nowhere near as effective as skillers and Attack rating.

My progress:

I leveled as Martial arts from the start of season launch, played around with different specs and item combinations along the way and want to share what i've learned.

I've exclusively played with both Fist of fire, Claw of thunder and blades of ices – so I have no experience with any build only utilizing parts of the toolkit. With my playstyle I keep 4 sets of charges up while clawing through the maps.

Leveling as MA is a lot of fun and with the right early game gearing should be able to clear fairly easy from normal to hell pits, countess, tunnels and arcane sanc.

I started farming Pits, countess, Tunnels, Arcane sanc, shenk, pindle. Progressing into cows (which is pretty fast even with mid game gear mf gear) and Chaos (you’ll want bartucs with 60ias on gear and lvl 16 burst of speed for this to nullify the attack speed loss from decrep). For mapping you'll want to have Storm shield + verdungos for DR, Hit your FHR breakpoints and capped your alres.

When progressing i’d try to get tanky and keep some MF on my gear – we have a lot of damage as Martial arts, focus on clearing with 100-200 mf if possible – GC skillers have been dirt cheap and will suffice as damage boots. Don't get baited by 2 charges gained from dual wielding – the animation from claw block is too slow and you'll kill on the first hit while still finishing your dual attack animation. Get a shield and breeze through the content:)

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Str: enough to wear gear

Dex: Enough to get max block – depending on progress/gear

Vit: Dump rest

Early game skills:

20 Fist of fire

20 Claw of thunder

20 Blades of ice

20 Cobra strike

1pt Burst of Speed

Dump into weapon mastery

Early to midgame:

There’s a lot of underutilized items that are extremely effective on Martial arts as mid game items – mix and match to hit max res and aim for FHR breakpoints

Helm: Lore Helmet, Crown of ages (hit it with -req/melee splash jewel), Rockstopper, Vgaze, Nightwings Andys

Weapon: Claw with x3 eths/perfect diamonds while leveling and early hell / random claw with fools mod (can even be magic) / Rare weapon with fools mod and + ma or assa skills / Jade Talon, Bartucs / Firelizards

Off-hand: Rythme (until you get CBF by other means) / Mosers / Whitstans / Headhunters

Armor: Stealth / Smoke / Skulder’s Ire (My favourite before Enigma) / Arkaine’s Valor / Najs light plate / Que-Hagen / Duriels shell / The spirit shroud / Vipermagi

Belt: MF+res+FHR rare / goldwraps / Mavinas Belt, string of ears

Rings: Raven frost / angelics / nagel / res rings w/ life/mana leech

Amulet: +3 Martial arts / angelics

Gloves: +2 martial arts gloves with MF

Boots: Dual res with MF / Nats boots / immortal king

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Buff Swap- +3 shadowdisc claws or Demon limb + medusa

End game skills:

20 Fist of fire

20 Claw of thunder

20 Blades of ice

20 Cobra strike

Dump into Tigerstrike

7pt Bladeshield (Hits lvl 26 with bis gear and 2xplague on swap)

3pt Burst of Speed (Hits lvl 16 with bis gear – enough to negate decrep with bartucs and 60ias in gear)

1pt Weapon mastery (The AR needs are not as high when you have Jah in Weapons 1pt is enough for bosses and elites in maps)

Note: Ignore the bladeshield points until you have perfect gear – isn’t worthwhile until lvl 26 and is even debatable at lvl 26. It’s a tradeoff between having to refresh and killing stranglers a little better

End game setup:

Helm: 3 socket +2 assa helm with @/res and dex/str – socket topaz/um depending on res

Weapon: 3 socket Bartucs with Jah, shael shael / 3os +2 assa, 40ias, ITD, fools mod claw (good luck…)

Offhand: 4 socket Stormshield with melee splash/-req + 15@res/-15req + 2um or 3 Um

Armor: Enigma in a Mageplate armor

Belt: Dungos

Rings: Wisp and Raven Frost – FRW, Life or MF corrupts

Amulet: +3 Martial arts skills, 35 MF – +1 all skills corrupt

Gloves: +2 Martial arts skills, 20ias – fire res/dex/str/mf are nice – 10ias/@res/LGOH corrupts (30 ias makes it possible to socket 2x 15 attack speed in bartucs, allowing for more res/AR)

Boots: Sandstorm Treks with 10% CD reduction

Charms: 2xFHR MA skillers, 6xMA+life, Gheeds, 20life+AR/MF small charms

Buff Swap- 2x +5 bladeshield (remember to look out for dex/str req on bases) or CTA+medusa/spirit

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Act 2 Offensive

Infinity Gaint Thresher, Reapers Toll

Fortitude, Shaftstop, Treachery, CoH

Vgaze, Andys, Tals Mask

Additional information:

Hitting 60ias and getting a Jah in Bartucs makes a ton of difference when mapping and is one of the first upgrades I would make for this character to truly work in endgame mapping.

There is plenty of damage in the build but survivability is an issue, and our survivability depends on hitting enemies and getting our DR + block chance up.

First big investments would be as follows

3xshael bartucs -> Stormshield -> Bartucs with Jah + 2xshael ->4os stormshield->Enigma->wisp

Merc is the last thing you need to think about – it’s nearly impossible to keep him alive.

Videos of maps coming soon


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