Group Experience META

General Strategy

We already have a guide on how experience works and how to farm it effectively here. In this article, we will talk about the 4-Player most effective tactic available (META) for experience (exp) farming. There only 1 real way to farm experience efficiently in groups:

  • Clearing Greater Rifts as high and as fast as you can! This method yields the most exp by far as you can see in our Greater Rift Scaling Guide. We farm in groups because we are much stronger with more players and get nice group experience bonuses. In Season 28 experience numbers go through the roof due to permanent Pool of Reflection from Mirror node in the Altar of Rites.

Group experience META's for Greater Rifts generally include great synergies that exceed normal support buffs.

2.6.315 (Boon of the Horadrim)RATS / LoN SB WD / Star Pact Wiz
2.6.416 (Season of Grandeur)Charge Barb / RATS / Bazooka Wiz
2.6.517 (Season of Nightmares)Vyr Wiz / RATS
2.6.618 (Season of Triune)Vyr Wiz / RATS
2.6.719 (Season of Eternal Conflict)WW Rend Barb / RATS / HF Sader
2.6.820 (Season of the Forbidden Archives)RATS / Spirit Barrage WD
2.6.921 (Trials of the Tempests)GoD DH / RATS / 150 LoD PSN Scythe
2.6.1022 (Shadows of the Past + 4th Cube)RATS / BATS
2.7.023 (The Disciples of Sanctuary)RATS / BATS / BIRDS
2.7.124 (Ethereal Memory)GODS / BIRDS / RATS
2.7.225 (Soul Shards)INNA / RATS
2.7.326 (Echoing Nightmare)RATS
2.7.427 (Angelic Crucibles)IMPALE / RATS
2.7.528 (Altar of Rites)Speed 150s / RATS

As you can see above, there has been one constant META since the Rise of the Necromancer release: Rat Runs! With the the additional power from the Altar of Rites Seasonal Theme, there are a few contenders that absolutely crush even the highest of Great Rifts: Trag'oul's Avatar Death Nova Trash Killer Necromancer and Tal Rasha's Elements Meteor Wizard. The Wizards in particular benefit tremendously from the Vigor node to match their high demand of Resources.
The Legacy of Dreams "Rat" Skeletal Mage Necromancers with their insane clear speed still stand strong and are just slightly behind but provide an excellent transition into high Great Rift Pushing as Bones of Rathma Army of the Dead RGK Necromancer and Trag'oul's Avatar Death Nova Trash Killer Necromancer.

150 META Runs with Death Nova or Tal Rasha

With the high powercreep during Season 28 players can crush high Greater Rifts with ease. We recommend running the standard 4-Player Push META and farm Greater Rifts 150 to get experience. Each completed Rift grants around 1.150 trillion experience with permanent Pools from Mirror. Coordinated groups will run these in just a few minutes, resulting in insane experience per hour!

The Death Nova Necromancer build has the highest potential DPS thanks to Trag'oul's Avatar and Iron Rose. This build brings Frailty into the group which makes Conduit Pylons extremely powerful. Furthermore Leech Blood Flask can be used to reset your Health Potion Cooldown to proc for additional effects from Father.
The Necromancer can destroy Trash that is pulled and controlled by the zBarb with just one hit with the great AoE scaling of Bloodtide Blade. Even Elites can die instantly in very dense Pixelpulls. On top of that, the Necromancer has good toughness, which makes it relatively easy to survive without a zMonk. The Necromancer curses the monsters to gain the Spreading Malediction damage buff. Once every monster is grouped up (preferably on top of Elites) the Necromancer creates an Oculus Ring or a purple Triune Ring from Mother. After moving into the damage circle, he starts casting Siphon Blood into the center of the pull. Together with Iron Rose and his Simulacrum Blood and Bone to deal devastating damage with Death Nova. Ideally this is timed with the Convention of Elements Physical rotation and a Ground Stomp Wrenching Smash from the zBarb for an insane burst with Arena Damage and Krysbin's Sentence.

TK Nova
Trag'oul's Avatar Death Nova Necromancer
Support#1 Standard zBarb
RGK Rathma
Bones of Rathma Army of the Dead Necromancer

Alternatively, you can play 1 or even 2 insane Tal Rasha's Elements Meteor Wizard crushing the Boss by just using Bane of the Stricken without a dedicated RGK or use the Spirit of Arachyr Corpse Spiders Witch Doctor to melt the Boss.

Rat Runs with LoD Necromancer

(5 - 10% less exp than 150-META-Runs)

This is the most figured out META with 2 LoD Mage Necromancers as Damage Dealers, a zNec and a zBarb. There have been a lot of variations in the past with Bones of Rathma (which gave the name to this META) Legacy of Nightmares, Legacy of Dreams (LoD) and many more. Rats have been the top tier experience farming META since its introduction into the game in patch 2.6.0 with the Necromancer as a new class. This META is extremely fast and while it might not be the best EXP/hour it will clear way more rifts than 150 META runs, which means more loot and gem upgrades.

The zNec leads the group, cursing every monster with Briggs' Wrath and applying the Critical Hit Chance debuffs from Brittle Touch on the enemies. They also freeze everything with Land of the Dead Frozen Lands to proc Krysbin’s Sentence and protect the damage dealers. The zBarb adds buffs, scouts and picks up the Health and Progression Globes as soon as possible! The most important buff to keep up is the crowd control immunity from Ignore Pain Mob Rule. The damage Necromancers stay close to slain enemies to get Essence back from Devouring Aura. Finally, they summon fully powered Skeletal Mage Singularity onto the Elites by hovering the cursor over them for focused damage.

Rat Nec x2
Rat Nec

Rat Necromancer

At very high Paragon you can drop the zBarb completely and get a zDH in. That way the Necromancers get even more damage from Odyssey's End and Companion Wolf Companion. The tradeoff is the Necromancers can die very easily now without Ignore Pain and War Cry. This setup is only recommended for very experienced players. For 99% of players, however, we strongly recommend playing with a zBarb.

Alternative damage dealers

Despite what the name implies, "Rat Runs" don't always have actual "Rat Necro" (aka LoD Mage Necro) in them. It is possible to mix in some other damage dealers without un-ratting the run. The important part is that you have zNecro in the team and you just mindlessly blast through the rift in under 2 minutes while everything is frozen. If it looks like a rat run, swims like a rat run and quacks like a rat run, then it's probably a rat run.

One such option is Masquerade Bone Spear Necromancer. It can replace one of the Rat Necros and bring in some AoE damage to instantly delete big pixels created by the zNec. These runs were the best way to farm XP back in Season 22. Since then Bone Spear has been nerfed and then buffed and now it's almost back where it started.

The second option is GoD Hungering Arrow Demon Hunter. This build is basically the same as Rat Necro with insane single-target damage and auto-aim. After the latest buff to the Gears of Dreadlands set you can replace one or both Necros with Demon Hunters and have very similar results. While DH-based rat runs are a tier or two weaker than the real thing, you can spin the entire time and sometimes you have to prioritize what's really important. Remember, XP is gonna be reset in the next season!

Bone Spear Necro
Bat Nec
GoD Demon Hunter

Rat Necromancer

Double Tal Rasha Wizard Speeds

(5 - 10% less exp than 150-META-Runs)

2 Tal Rasha's Elements Meteor Wizards can crush the Rift and the Rift Guardian alike by just using Bane of the Stricken or Bane of the Powerful on lower Greater Rift tiers without a dedicated RGK. The Meteor Damage output is insanely high, especially with Nilfur's Boast extra damage vs 3 or fewer enemies and the Vigor Altar of Rites boosts for extra Arcane Power recovery.
Furthermore, Meteor stacking with The Smoldering Core provides a decent synergy between the 2 Wizards for faster damage ramp up.
We add the standard zDH and zBarb for the best combination of extra damage and toughness buffs.

Gameplay Wizards
Keeps distance from the pulls created by the zBarb to be safe and to benefit from Power Hungry and Zei's Stone of Vengeance. Follow the zBarb by using Teleport while the zDH debuffs everything and spam your Meteors to deal damage and to reset your Teleport Cooldown from the Tal Rasha's Elements (4) Piece Bonus.

Tal Rasha Meteor x2
Rat Nec

Rat Necromancer

Honorable Mentions

You can also run:

to farm experience with great success!

Create your own META

In the end, there are plenty of ways to farm experience in Diablo 3. You can just group up with some friends and do Speed Great Rifts with almost any class and build. Pick whatever you enjoy!
Here are a few more general tips on how to build your group setup:

  1. Pick 1-2 Supporters
  2. Pick 1-3 Damage Dealers
  3. Create your own setup & have fun!


There are plenty of options to farm experience efficiently in groups. Always communicate with your teammates to optimize Greater Rift times, Pool of Reflection uptime and town rotations. The current seasonal theme has probably the biggest impact ever on almost any build in Diablo 3 and certainly on the amount of experience points per hour. If you ever wanted a high Paragon Level this is the Season to do it. Happy farming!


META report by Rob
Reviewed by Northwar


Feb 15th 2023
Updated for Season 28 / Patch 2.7.5

Aug 14th 2022
Updated for Season 27 / Patch 2.7.4