So working your way through Normal mode isn’t really too challenging. Sure, there might be a couple hairy situations here or there but by and large, the Normal mode seems designed to introduce you to the class that you’re playing and the way the mechanics of the game work.
Nightmare mode seems to be where the challenge actually starts kicking in and it only starts racheting up at an incredible rate from there when you jump into Hell and Inferno.
This is a build designed for the Monk that will allow you to survive when on your own and to function as a meat shield if you happen to be playing with some high damage dealing friends.
The main basis for synergy with this build is around the increased spirit regeneration rate with Fists of Thunder and Sweeping Wind combined with your Mantra and passives.
So long as you’re attacking an enemy with Sweeping Wind up, your spirit regeneration pushes up high enough for you to spam your Mantra on a regular basis. Runed with Boon of Protection, the Mantra will provide you with constant shield that will absorb 15% of your maximum HP before breaking which already provides an immense boost to your survivability.
On top of that, you have the passive skill, Transcendence which heals you for a certain amount for every point of spirit spent. With your constant spam of your no cooldown Mantra of Healing, you’ll keep up a constant shield, increased health regeneration from the active portion of the mantra as well as healing yourself for a decent chunk of health everytime you hit it.
What’s best is that the active portion of the Mantra as well as the shield also affects any nearby party members which can help them stay alive as well so long as they stay a reasonable distance nearby.
The other skills are a bit more optional but I prefer running with Seven Sided Strike with the Pandemonium rune which gives the skill a chance to stun. The extra few seconds of invulnerability while the strike is going off as well as the stun can be used to save you and your friends. Couple this with Ascension which also provides you with a brief moment of invulnerability gives you access to a few powerful cooldowns that can be chained together to give yourself about 5-6 seconds of complete invulnerability as well as stunning opponents and even shielding your allies as well if you select the right rune.
The final skill slot is very much a matter of preference.
If you prefer to solo, you would likely be better off using Mystic Ally to provide a spare meat shield and fire and forget damage for the times you’re forced to kite the tougher champion mobs.
If you prefer group play, you may want to take Cyclone instead with the Wall of Wind rune to help solidify your role as the tank by drawing mobs in on you and keeping them from your allies.
This build is far from perfect and the bane of your existence is going to end up being mobs that can shield themselves and prevent you from spamming the abilities that will keep you alive but throughout Normal, Nightmare, and most of Hell, this combination of defensive abilities will allow you to tank just about everything that gets in your way without breaking a sweat.
Inferno mode is a beast of a different caliber altogether but we’ll cover the problems found there later on.