HC Barb - Maxed WW, Mastery, BO, Shout...what next?


Diabloii.Net Member
HC Barb - Maxed WW, Mastery, BO, Shout...what next?

Hey I run a HC Barb, and am wondering what I should do next, both gear and skill wise.

Right now:

20 sword mastery
20 WW
20 BO
20 Shout

I'm level 85, so I already have saved points.

I have base str, dex is 180ish after items, enough for 75% Block with SS.


eBotD Colossus Blade
Gores/Infernostrides (Can't decide, fire is my only resist at 60 instead of 75)

I'm sitting about at 4200 health (I have almost no good charms). 75% block, 43% damage reduction.

My WW damage is OK, nothing to get excited about (with might merc maybe around 5K max). Defense is around 14K after shout (+1pt in Iron Skin + skills).

So where should I go next? With +11 skills, the resistance skill is starting to hit hard diminishing returns (1pt in it), as is increased speed (same). 1pt Beserk seems to be fine with 20 in Shout for synergy.

Is the best option Iron Skin? I use leap, but only at Nih when Dkey running, where level 12 leap seems fine. The thing is armor hits pretty hard diminishing returns, and 10 - 15 more in Iron Skin will only mean about a 4 - 6% less chance for mobs to hit.

As for gear, what should I be looking for? Highlord's seems redundant--botd already hits max WW speed (right?).



Diabloii.Net Member
1 pt. Leap is definitely enough for PvM purposes.

I would first dump a point into Find Item if you haven't already. This way, by switching a few pieces of gear, your Barb will be able to double as a magic finder and triple as a gold finder.

The standard path is to start maxing Iron Skin, but you only gain a couple hundred defense per point invested. With the diminishing returns on chance to be hit vs. defense, and considering you're already at ~14k def, this isn't very impressive.

You've basically go two other options as I see it: increase your Concentrate damage or increase your Berserk damage.

If you're completely satisfied with your Berserk damage, dumping your remaining points into Concentrate would turn you into a ridiculous tank when you needed to be (so long as you can keep attacking). You could Leap into just about any pack of monsters and Conc away all day and not take damage. IMO, however, focusing on two physical damage attacks is somewhat redundant.

Pts in Berserk will up your damage quite a bit and reduce the amount of time your defense is at zero, but Howl is an underrated PvM skill and happens to be a synergy to Berserk. Howl just about turns Uber Trist into a cake walk, makes Nihlathak runs go smoother, and allows you to separate Oblivion Knights (IM) from their minions. This is what I did with my latest IK Barb and I've been quite pleased with the results.

As for the gear, you're not wearing Highlord's for the IAS (which doesn't even apply to your WW speed anyway), you're wearing if for the huge Deadly Strike.

I would try to make up that fire res elsewhere (charms and/or sockets). Infernostrides are garbage; Gores would be a whole lot better.

If you're not satisfied with your WW damage you could always look into getting 'Fortitude' (although at this point you may not have enough str to give up 'Enigma').