You'll notice that major changes include dropping Deathly Invigoration for Death Nova and using a full set of Runes of the Monk.
The Jagged Horrors were just too essential of a trait to lose out on, as they were just too important for their added toughness, bleeds, and most of all use as a disposable meat shield. Their damage also scales very well with Vampiric Master, as the flat fixed boost affects the damage of Jagged Horrors more than any other minion. Death Nova poison explosion was just an added perk.
Mathematically, there's just no way around the fact that minion master damage was nerfed this patch, so there's not much to say on that. Minion AI is still as bad as ever and in the while that I was playing, I felt that it had in fact gotten worse (though there's no substantial evidence other than my own limited anecdotal experience). Healing-wise, it's probably a bit stronger now although a little harder to take advantage of. Having to go into the Death Magic line and losing a reliable 1000+ AoE heal (that also worked out of combat) every 10 seconds was pretty bad, but the second sigil on the staff with the Superior Sigil of Water partially makes up for that. The big changer is the 6 set bonus for monk runes, which increases all healing (including regen) by 10%.
Because minion damage was nerfed so heavily, I feel like Bloodthirst is now a more viable alternative over Transfusion than ever. It boosts the added damage of Vampiric Master from about 76 to 91 at the expense of the survivability of the Jagged Horrors and bone minions. The rest of the minions survived just fine for the most part without Transfusion. So that's a point of debate anyway. Note also that Bloodthirst synergizes with Vampiric, though Vampiric is pretty much just a sad, useless trait. Still, Transfusion's pretty amazing so still main build for now.
Any thoughts about using zealot's gear? Full clerics has 12% more healing power, but zealots does 28% more damage NOT counting minions and NOT counting conditions (both of which lower the overall damage increase).
Overall, minions seem like they would be sick in PvP and to a lesser extent, WvW. In PvE though, zerker builds are just so much faster in open world roaming and definitely the no-brainer go-to build for skilled party dungeon clears. For the lower-skilled party, I could actually see this build being pretty useful and good at keeping people alive in say TA, the Spider Queen in AC, or the first boss in HotW P1 to name a few. Leveling-wise, minions still seem good though; strong and safe. The patch just made the build less offensive and more defensive, which is basically the exact opposite of what was needed. At least I feel it's still pretty fun and unique, so it's got that going for it.
Always cool to have 13 minions following you. That 387 is one tick of regeneration.
Is there an alternative to Rune of the Monk for those that don't run dungeons?