Build information for the Blizzard Sorceress, including suggested skills, stat distribution and gear.
Blizzard Sorceress Pros
|Blizzard deals immense damage.|
|Quick farming of key areas/bosses.|
|Very easy for new players to run with budget gear.|
|Teleport enables quick traversal and enemy avoidance.|
|Quite possibly the best early-game Mephisto farmer.|
|Cold damage can pop corpses, preventing respawns.|
Blizzard Sorceress Cons
|Relies on a single element - very hard to finish Hell difficulty solo.|
|Blizzard hits what it wants to hit, when it wants to hit it.|
|Requires a lot of kiting.|
|Cold damage can pop corpses, making friendly Necromancer sad.|
|Very difficult to defeat some end-game bosses, like Ubers.|
No need to beat around the bush, the Blizzard Sorceress may be the best character for new players, as she doesn’t require much in the way of gear, deals tremendous damage, and thanks to Teleport and the mechanics of Blizzard, is very, very good at farming, even with said budget gear. If your top concern is getting a whole bunch of unique and set items to equip other characters (including the Blizzard Sorceress herself), you probably want to run a Blizzard Sorceress early. If your top concern is playing a badass character (or characters - everybody has their own specializations) and dominating Hell difficulty and the Ubers… well, you’re probably still better off running a Blizzard Sorceress to get all the other characters the starter gear they need.
Once you’ve progressed to Nightmare Act 3, you can start farming Mephisto, which is where a great deal of mid-tier gear will come from. Skin of the Vipermagi, Skullder’s Ire, Lidless Wall, Vampire Gaze, Shaftstop, String of Ears, The Oculus, Frostburn, Magefist, War Travelers, Silkweave… just to name a few sought-after highlights. Not to sell her short, the Blizzard Sorceress is also quite capable of taking down Hell Andariel, Hell Mephisto and a few areas devoid of cold immunes, like the Ancient Tunnels. From these three sources you can farm pretty much any item in the game. Not a bad boon for a budget character.
Once she reaches Hell difficulty, things get tricky - there are a lot of cold immunes in Hell difficulty, and while you can use a Mercenary to deal with some of them, the first time you run into a unique enemy and their pack of minions, all cold immune, bolstered by the Aura Enchanted and Cursed mods, you’ll realize how limited the whole “rely on mercenaries for immunes” strategy can be. Teleport can get you through, but it makes clearing some areas - or just reach the exit/boss - that much more difficult.
Two options for dealing with this problem (not including toughing it out and hoping Teleporting blindly through levels eventually works) is to either play online with others, whom can deal with cold immune enemies for you, or start your career as a Meteorb Sorceress, who is better at progressing through Hell difficulty due to being a dual-element build, but who is also inferior at farming once she’s done with Hell difficulty. This, of course, will require you to respec, but you’ll acquire three chances to do so throughout the game.
Blizzard Sorceress - Skills
The build’s kind of in the name - a Blizzard Sorceress wants to focus on Blizzard and its synergies, as these will be her primary damage-dealing skills. Unfortunately Blizzard isn’t an ideal killer - when you cast it, it’ll summon a barrage of icy death to obliterate an area, randomly hitting enemies in its moderately-sized area-of-effect over the course of four seconds. There’s a slight delay between casting and Blizzard’s effect starting, the actual areas with its AoE are random and the spell has an AoE which is large enough to function adequately, but nowhere near large enough to ensure hits. All this combines to make open combat with Blizzard somewhat frustrating at times, as it’s possible for enemies to walk right through its effects unscathed, although on the other hand an enemy may be hit several times by a single casting of Blizzard, and the cooldown is shorter than the spell’s duration, so you can layer an area with Blizzards. When it works well, it obliterates everything, when it doesn’t… well, be prepared to kite.
Other skills you’ll want to invest into include Ice Bolt, Ice Blast and Glacial Spike, all of which make leveling a Blizzard Sorceress fairly easy - you can freely drop points into these basic offensive cold spells as you advance through Normal difficulty knowing these points won’t be wasted. Ice Blast in particular is a useful spell, as it doesn’t have a cooldown, freezes enemies solid, and once all of Blizzard’s synergies are maxed (all of which are also synergies for Ice Blast) Ice Blast will be dealing a hefty amount of damage in its own right. When fighting enemies, then, you’ll want to lead with Blizzard, and while it’s on cooldown, spam Ice Blast until you get another chance to cast Blizzard. Rinse and repeat.
Otherwise the Blizzard Sorceress invests in Sorceress mainstays: Warmth for mana regeneration, Static Field to take down bosses quicker (not really necessary - disregard if not wanted), Telekinesis as a prerequisite to Teleport, and Teleport for mobility, Cold Mastery to increase damage further.
Unlike the other elemental trees, Cold Mastery reduces enemy resistances instead of boosting the damage you deal. This is pretty much pure upside, save for one trivial detail: Investing in Cold Mastery will not make your damage numbers bigger on your stats screen. We said it was trivial, and we meant it. Still, this lack of feedback can make cold spells seem weaker than they actually are, as a Sorceress with Cold Mastery at sLv23 will be reducing an enemy’s cold resistance by 130%. Hence a 5,000 damage Blizzard spell would be dealing double damage to foes with 30% cold resistance, whereas a 10,000 damage Lightning spell would only deal 7,000 damage to an enemy with 30% lightning resistance. Unfortunately, Cold Mastery doesn’t affect cold immunes, regardless of level, and since the max effect Cold Mastery can have is to reduce an enemy’s cold resistance to -100%, there’s a limit to its efficacy and how much you should invest into it. Shooting for 130% cold resistance reduction is a fine target, which will vary your Skill Point investment depending on how much +Skills gear you have. Since it’s not hard to get +10 Skills even with a heavy emphasis on Magic Find, we’ll keep things simple and shoot for around 10 hard points invested, with a goal of reaching sLv23.
Blizzard Sorceress Suggested Skills
|Warmth||1||Increased Mana regen. Add one point, let +skills take care of the rest.|
|Ice Bolt||20||Starter offensive spells. Synergizes with Blizzard.|
|Ice Blast||20||Secondary offensive spell. Synergizes with Blizzard. Cast while Blizzard is on cooldown.|
|Frost Nova||1||Prereq for Blizzard.|
|Glacial Spike||20||Synergizes with Blizzard. Has AoE, but damage makes it inferior to Ice Blast.|
|Blizzard||20||Primary offensive spell.|
|Cold Mastery||10~||Reduces enemy cold resistance. Shoot for -130% cold resist (sLv23).|
|Static Field||1||Reduces enemy life by 25%, get close to bosses and fry them.|
|Telekinesis||1||Prereq for Teleport.|
|Teleport||1||Awesome mobility skill. One point is all you need.|
|Total||95~ Skill Points (Lv84~ + Quests|
Blizzard Sorceress Level-by-Level Skills
|2||Ice Bolt (1)|
|3 - 5||Save Skill Points for Lv6|
|6||Frost Nova (1), Ice Blast (1), Static Field (1), Telekinesis (1)|
|Den of Evil||Warmth (1)|
|7 - 17||Ice Blast (12)|
|18||Glacial Spike (1)|
|Radament’s Lair||Teleport (1)|
|19 - 23||Ice Blast (17)|
|24 - 43||Blizzard (20)|
|The Fallen Angel||Cold Mastery (1), Ice Blast (18)|
|44 - 45||Ice Blast (20)|
|Nightmare Quests||Glacial Spike (5)|
|46 - 60||Glacial Spike (20)|
|61 - 69||Cold Mastery (10)|
|Hell Quests||Ice Bolt (5)|
|70 - 84||Ice Bolt (20)|
Blizzard Sorceress - Stats
Like most MF-focused characters, the Blizzard is a simple creature when it comes to stats: She needs enough Strength wear her gear, which in this case will likely be a Spirit Monarch. This chonk weighs in at a hefty 156 Strength, but once this goal is met, the rest of her Stat Points go into Vitality.
Blizzard Sorceress Level-by-Level Stats
|2 - 9||Strength +40 (50)|
|10 - 29||Vitality +100 (110)|
|30 - 39||Strength +50 (100)|
|40 - 44||Vitality +25 (135)|
|Lam Esen’s Tome||Vitality +5 (115)|
|45 - 54||Strength +50 (150)|
Blizzard Sorceress - Gear
One of the perks of the Sorceress is she’s relatively easy to gear up. While expensive runewords like Enigma, Chains of Honor and, to a lesser degree, Heart of the Oak are all worth considering if you’re fabulously wealthy, you’ll do just fine without them. In fact, a Blizzard Sorceress is doing pretty well with a Skin of the Vipermagi (or a Skullder’s Ire, if you want more Magic Find), Magefist, a Spirit sword and shield (or an Oculus and Lidless Wall, if you prefer), War Travelers and perhaps some Tal Rasha’s set items.
Most of this gear you can find by doing relatively easy Nightmare Mephisto runs, and once you accumulate a good collection this (or comparable) gear, you can move on to Hell Mephisto, who may yield a Harlequin Crest or even an Arachnid Mesh. Hell Andariel isn’t as easy for the Blizzard Sorceress as it is for the Meteorb Sorceress, but it’s by no means difficult, and if you can put up with the runs, Andariel can yield many of the same items as Nightmare/Hell Mephisto, but has a good chance of dropping jewelry - with much luck, perhaps even a Stone of Jordan.
The Blizzard Sorceress covets gear with +Skills, as her damage will be largely determined by the sLv of her spells. Items that boost cold damage are also useful, albeit less common - Snowclash is a good belt to look for due to adding +2 to Blizzard, and it’s a lot less difficulty to find than Arachnid Mesh. Faster Cast Rate is also useful, as it’ll allow for faster casting of Ice Blast and Teleport (Blizzard has cooldowns, making cast rate somewhat redundant). You’ll eventually want to shoot for a total of +63% or +105% Faster Cast Rate, as these are the [breakpoints] at which frames are dropped from the casting animation - resulting in faster casting times. The maximum useful cast rate for the Blizzard Sorceress is at +200% Faster Cast Rate, which will take a whole lot of effort to reach for very little noticeable gain - +63% or +105% are far more reasonable.
After +Skills and Faster Cast Rate, the Sorceress needs gear that provides universally useful boosts, like +Resistances, +Life, +Mana and +Attributes. Of course, once you’re powerful enough to clear areas with some speed you’ll want to start sacrificing some survivability or power for Magic Find - how much Magic Find you aim for depends on where you’re farming, what other gear you have, and what you feel comfortable with, although +300% Magic Find is a pretty good goal for serious farming.
Simply put, the Blizzard Sorceress is spoiled for choice when it comes to gear, depending on whether you’d rather focus on kill rate, MF, or some compromise between the two. Best of all, she can acquire all of this gear herself, with very easy-to-obtain equipment, by just doing boss runs.
Blizzard Sorceress Helmets
|Harlequin Crest||+2 Skills, +Life/Mana per Level, Damage Reduced 10%, +50% Magic Find|
|Tarnhelm||+1 Skills, +25-50% Magic Find|
|Peasant Crown||+1 Skills, +Run/Walk Speed, +Vitality/Energy|
|Lore||+1 Skills, +10 Energy, +2 Mana/Kill, +Lightning Resist +30%|
Blizzard Sorceress Amulets
|Mara’s Kaleidoscope||+2 Skills, All Resistances +20-30%, +5 All Attributes|
|Tal Rasha’s Adjudication||+2 Sorceress Skills, +50 Life, +42 Mana, Lightning Resist +33%|
|Magic/Rare||+Skills, +Caster Rate, +Life, +Mana, +Resists|
Blizzard Sorceress Weapons
|Heart of the Oak||+3 Skills, +40% Cast Rate, +10 Dexterity, Max Mana +15%, All Resistances +30%-40%|
|The Oculus||+3 Sorceress Skills, +30% Cast Rate, +20 Vitality, +20 Energy, All Resistances +20, 50% Magic Find|
|Spirit||+2 Skills, +25-35 Cast Rate, +55% Hit Recovery, +22 Vitality, +89-112 Mana|
Blizzard Sorceress Armor
|Enigma||+2 Skills, +45% Run/Walk Speed, +1 Teleport, +Strength per Level, +5% Max Life, Damage Reduced 8%, +Magic Find per Level|
|Chains of Honor||+2 Skills, +20 Strength, All Resistances +65, Damage Reduced 8%, +25% Magic Find|
|Skin of the Vipermagi||+1 Skills, +30% Cast Rate, All Resistances +20-35|
|Skullder’s Ire||+1 Skills, +Magic Find per Level|
Blizzard Sorceress Shields
|Spirit||+2 Skills, +25-35 Cast Rate, +55% Hit Recovery, +22 Vitality, +89-112 Mana Cold, Lightning, Poison Resist +35%|
|Lidless Wall||+1 Skills, +20% Cast Rate, +10 Energy, Max Mana 10%|
Blizzard Sorceress Gloves
|Trang-Oul’s Claws||+20% Cast Rate, Cold Resist +30%|
|Magefist||+1 Fire Skills, +20% Cast Rate, Regenerate Mana +25%|
|Frostburn||Max Mana +40%|
|Chance Guards||+25-40% Magic Find|
Blizzard Sorceress Rings
|Stone of Jordan||+1 Skills, +20 Mana, Max Mana +25%|
|Nagelring||+15-30% Magic Find|
|Magic/Rare||+Caster Rate, +Life, +Mana, +Resists|
Blizzard Sorceress Belts
|Arachnid Mesh||+1 Skills, +20% Cast Rate, Max Mana +5%|
|Verdungo’s Hearty Cord||+30-40 Vitality, Damage Reduced 10-15%|
|String of Ears||Damage Reduced 10-15%|
|Goldwrap||Magic Find +30%|
Blizzard Sorceress Boots
|War Travelers||+25% Run/Walk, +Strength/Vitality, +30-50% Magic Find|
|Aldur’s Advance||+40% Run/Walk, +50 Life, Fire Resist +40-50%|
|Sandstorm Trek||+20% Run/Walk, +Strength/Vitality, Poison Reist +40-70%|
|Silkweave||+30% Run/Walk, Max Mana +10%|