Witching Hour Discussion

Not much has been heard from since Sigatrev’s Ghol’s Witching Hour build since the very dawn of FG, and since that thread hasn’t been touched much, I wanted to try and bring it up to a more current version. From the looks of it, the main strength of the build is Ghol’s set combined with the nice All Damage boosts from Witching Hour and Beastcaller’s Cowl. We already know that Ghol’s Acid builds are incredibly strong, so I wanted to see if I could make a pure Chaos Witching Hour build, especially as the Pet conversion to Chaos wasn’t there when Sigatrev’s build was posted.

As sigatrev previously mentioned, it’s either steamroll or die, so I wanted to see if I could obtain a little more consistency while keeping true to the major damage boost. This is the build I tested for Crucible - making sure I follow the rules of obtaining capped pet resistances + Tree of Life while also hard capping Hellfire + converted Will of the Crypt + converted Soul Harvest for a whopping total bonus of 204 flat Chaos damage for our fine Skeleton friends. Yet, the results just feel so lacking.

Some weak points I’m obliged to point out:

  1. Witching Hour’s 30 sec recharge to the 15 sec duration means that Hourglass is mandatory for this set-up, and taking a 2H rifle means virtually no CDR for things like Giant’s Blood (which is awful when you have no CDR, which is why I chose Tree of Life instead). This really limits what you can choose, devotion-wise, especially as you have pet resistances and your own survivability to think about as well.

  2. The bad uptime on Witching Hour means that things get really hot and cold in terms of damage. I was hoping the large flat damage would offset that, but I definitely feel damage lacking when Witching Hour is on cooldown.

  3. No RR makes things really, really difficult to fight Chaos-resistant enemies. I try to avoid it by using a Chaos RR conduit, but it’s not enough. I know Sigatrev’s build avoids the Reaper problem by adding an additional Acid focus, but we already know that Ghol’s Acid builds are very strong, and there have already been strong Ghol’s Cabalists that have similar results without needing to use Skeletons. Chaos not having a DoT component such as Acid compounds the problem, as if you’re not actively engaging the target, you’re not damaging it at all, and that really hurts the performance.

I tried running a more Chaos-centric approach and in 10+ Crucible runs, I died in either Wave 160 having to fight Reaper or in Waves 167-170 cause it just can’t burst down Nemeses / Korvaak fast enough. With a pet health of 250%, Tree of Life, and capped resistances, the Skeletons survive Crucible just fine, but the summoner is too squishy to be able to tank multiple Nemesis hits long enough for the Skeletons to do their job. What are people’s thoughts on this?

Should it not bother being a Chaos weapon and rather be a support for another damage type like Fire or Acid? Should it try and be a Chaos build and not be overshadowed by Mythical Fiendgaze Tome which has RR + Reap Spirit usage? Would something like a -15% RR to Ill Omen make it palatable to make it a pure Chaos Cabalist pet build without unforeseen consequences that would bust something else? I know @Nery wanted to specifically try this weapon, and I’m sure bird-master @Maya has plenty to share on this as well.


I looked Sigatrev build and his idea was to utilize strong points of the weapon % damage boost and +skills. I think this is reasonable, although lack of CDR affects build performance pretty negatively.

For chaos pets Idk. Lack of native RR isn’t good and chaos is still pretty exotic damage type. And if I want to make chaos pets I have traditional off-hand alternatives. So not sure how you can improve that concept. You even use CDR hat but still isn’t enough. And RR conduit isn’t enough for RR and you don’t have burst damage against Reaper. Also strict chaos route prevent you from using defensive powerhouse devotions, so it’s naturally tough job to make it fit for Crucible.

I want to wait for next patch before making conclusions (Z hinted about item changes) but the weapon is support gear for now, not build defining one.


I have used it for pure chaos while testing a personal variation of [] KaosKats (Updated 6.17 Cruci) - Taking pets to the Darkside

Also, personal Ghol variation using witching hour meme: The Lazy Hour - Pet Cabalist

It does fine. But when I say fine, I am not talking <6m Cruci fine, however. Question though is, whether I would consider taking it over weapon + Off-hand combo, to which the answer would be a “no” atm.

And that said, my main gripe with the item is its CD. Would certainly get more love from me if it was a toggle skill like Winter King’s.

A bit more regarding the weapon, (random fwuffy thoughts and stuff)

  • I find Silverbolt more useful for Pet builds in general and get better performance using it. Though I wasn’t going for a Chaos Pet build with Silverbolt. And it was mostly that huge +3 to skills carrying it.

  • I don’t like losing mana regen, CDR and 1 component for Witching hour.

  • For Chaos Pets, A Salazar’s Harbinger is huge DPS boost while taking up only the weapon slot. Being an MI, you can also fish for affixes according to your needs and wants.

  • Fiend’s Gaze provides free -%RR, player DA, Pet OA, extra conversion so that you don’t need to proc Voidwhisper bands to get full Phys > Chaos, etc on top of everything else an Off-hand provides.

  • The Flat and %Dmg from Witching Hour is nice, but only available half the time due to CD. Assuming you don’t take Hourglass, which I personally don’t, whatever advantage it might have plummets quickly.

  • Further commenting on the Flat dmg aspect of it, it saw most use combined with the number advantage of Skeletons. Being a passionate hater of the Boners, Fwuffy gives the weapon minus points for that.


I agree with basically all of this. In theory, it’s meant to be a full Chaos Skeleton build that takes advantage of a huge damage burst. In reality, this weapon just screams “obsolete.” Either a small cut in the downtime or some sort of modifier to make up for the lack of CDR + component (and you can’t use Solael’s for RR because pets really need the resistances from Seal of Might) would really have this weapon stand out from being a sub-tier Chaos pets or a sub-tier Ghol’s supplement.

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