Patriach Jeremy – Berserk Barbarian My eldest son, Jeremy, has a bit of a temper. Especially when he was younger, he had some extreme tantrums where he went berserk and howled like you wouldn’t believe. There, a lame but very straightforward connection to the build I chose to represent him. He is my third family member-themed character following his brothers Milo and Cameron. Since his end-game weapon was a big two-handed axe, I leveled him through the game with big two-handed axes. Progression, with character level in parentheses, was as follows: Axe of Fechmar (8), Goreshovel (14), The Chieftain (19), ‘Honor’ Bearded Axe (27), The Minotaur (45), and finally Death (55). Level 55 is unfairly low for that weapon. Onto the details! Stats/Skills Name: Jeremy Class: Barbarian Experience: 1631891002 Level: 90 Naked/Gear Strength: 110/175 Dexterity: 20/78 Vitality: 405/405 Energy: 10/10 HP: 1813/1857 (3175 w/BO) Mana: 99/139 (237 w/BO) Stamina: 561/561 Defense: 1018/4886/0 (base/shout/Berserk ) AR: Concentrate: 7000, Berserk: 12,318 Damage: Concentrate: 4227-7453, Berserk: 7606-14K MF: 71 (171 hork) Block: 8 GF: 182 FR/W: 43 FHR: 87 (86% 4 frame breakpoint) IAS: 85 (78% 12 FPA breakpoint) FCR: 0 Resistances with Battle Command (+ with Fade) Fire: 23(75) Cold: 25(75) Lightning: 26(75) Poison: 15(75) Skills (including Battle Command) 20(27) Berserk 20(23) Axe Mastery 20(23) Howl 20(23) Shout 10(13) Battle Orders 1(4) each Taunt, Battle Cry, Battle Command, Increased Stamina, Iron Skin, Increased Speed, Natural Resistance 1(8) each Leap, Bash, Stun, Concentrate 101 Total (+4(7) Find Potion, Find Item, Grim Ward from Heart Carver on Switch) Gear Short version: Helm: Arreat’s Face w/ Dun Jewel of Fervor (8% Damage Taken Goes to Mana) Amulet: Amulet of Life Everlasting (24 iPDR) Weapon: 398% ED Death Ethereal Silver-Edged Axe (383% ED roll in a 15% ED superior base) Armor: Treachery Light Plate Gloves: Immortal King’s Forge Ring: Raven Frost (15/195) Belt: Immortal King’s Detail Ring: Gold Ring of Fortune (84 AR/23 MF) Boots: Immortal King’s Pillar Switch: Heart Carver / Gull for horking Long version: Spoiler Amulet of Life Everlasting Amulet Required Level: 37 Fingerprint: 0x43d2ffcc Item Level: 60 Version: Expansion 1.10+ Damage Reduced by 24 Jeremy's Death Superior Silver-edged Axe HelElVexOrtGul Two Hand Damage: 463 - 821 Durability: 19 of 19 Required Level: 55 Required Strength: 125 Required Dexterity: 44 Fingerprint: 0xd65635ae Item Level: 79 Version: Expansion 1.10+ 100% Chance to cast level 44 Chain Lightning when you Die 25% Chance to cast level 18 Glacial Spike on attack Indestructible 398% Enhanced Damage 20% Bonus to Attack Rating +50 to Attack Rating Adds 1 - 50 Lightning Damage 7% Mana stolen per hit 50% Chance of Crushing Blow 45% Deadly Strike (Based on Character Level) +1 to Light Radius Increase Maximum Durability 10% Level 22 Blood Golem (15/15 Charges) Requirements -20% Ethereal 5 Sockets (5 used) Socketed: Hel Rune Socketed: El Rune Socketed: Vex Rune Socketed: Ort Rune Socketed: Gul Rune Hel Rune Version: Expansion 1.10+ Weapons: Requirements -20% Armor: Requirements -15% Shields: Requirements -15% El Rune Required Level: 11 Version: Expansion 1.10+ Weapons: +50 to Attack Rating +1 to Light Radius Armor: +15 Defense +1 to Light Radius Shields: +15 Defense +1 to Light Radius Vex Rune Required Level: 55 Version: Expansion 1.10+ Weapons: 7% Mana stolen per hit Armor: +5% to Maximum Fire Resist Shields: +5% to Maximum Fire Resist Ort Rune Required Level: 21 Version: Expansion 1.10+ Weapons: Adds 1 - 50 Lightning Damage Armor: Lightning Resist +30% Shields: Lightning Resist +35% Gul Rune Required Level: 53 Version: Expansion 1.10+ Weapons: 20% Bonus to Attack Rating Armor: +5% to Maximum Poison Resist Shields: +5% to Maximum Poison Resist Jeremy's Treachery Light Plate ShaelThulLem Defense: 99 Durability: 52 of 60 Required Level: 43 Required Strength: 41 Fingerprint: 0xd111c0b5 Item Level: 57 Version: Expansion 1.10+ 5% Chance to cast level 15 Fade when struck 25% Chance to cast level 15 Venom on striking +2 to Assassin Skill Levels +45% Increased Attack Speed +20% Faster Hit Recovery Cold Resist +30% 50% Extra Gold from Monsters 3 Sockets (3 used) Socketed: Shael Rune Socketed: Thul Rune Socketed: Lem Rune Shael Rune Required Level: 29 Version: Expansion 1.10+ Weapons: +20% Increased Attack Speed Armor: +20% Faster Hit Recovery Shields: +20% Faster Block Rate Thul Rune Required Level: 23 Version: Expansion 1.10+ Weapons: Adds 3 - 14 Cold Damage Over 3 Secs (75 Frames) Armor: Cold Resist +30% Shields: Cold Resist +35% Lem Rune Required Level: 43 Version: Expansion 1.10+ Weapons: 75% Extra Gold from Monsters Armor: 50% Extra Gold from Monsters Shields: 50% Extra Gold from Monsters Raven Frost Ring Required Level: 45 Fingerprint: 0xf424b4f6 Item Level: 87 Version: Expansion 1.10+ +195 to Attack Rating Adds 15 - 45 Cold Damage Over 4 Secs (100 Frames) +15 to Dexterity +40 to Mana Cold Absorb 20% Cannot Be Frozen Gold Ring of Fortune Ring Required Level: 31 Fingerprint: 0x5fcdec9f Item Level: 51 Version: Expansion 1.10+ +84 to Attack Rating 23% Better Chance of Getting Magic Items Immortal King's Detail War Belt Defense: 194 Durability: 22 of 24 Required Level: 29 Required Strength: 110 Fingerprint: 0x500b673a Item Level: 80 Version: Expansion 1.10+ +36 Defense +25 to Strength Lightning Resist +31% Fire Resist +28% Set (2 items): +105 Defense Set (3 items): +25% Faster Hit Recovery Set (4 items): +100% Enhanced Defense Set (5 items): Damage Reduced by 20% Set (6 items): +2 to Masteries Skills (Barbarian Only) Immortal King's Pillar War Boots Defense: 118 Durability: 23 of 24 Required Level: 31 Required Strength: 125 Fingerprint: 0x5911581b Item Level: 87 Version: Expansion 1.10+ +40% Faster Run/Walk +110 to Attack Rating +75 Defense +44 to Life Set (2 items): 25% Better Chance of Getting Magic Items Set (3 items): +2 to Combat Skills (Barbarian Only) Set (4 items): +160 Defense Set (5 items): Half Freeze Duration Immortal King's Forge War Gauntlets Defense: 228 Durability: 21 of 24 Required Level: 30 Required Strength: 110 Fingerprint: 0x90f0b603 Item Level: 87 Version: Expansion 1.10+ 12% Chance to cast level 4 Charged Bolt when struck +65 Defense +20 to Strength +20 to Dexterity Set (2 items): +25% Increased Attack Speed Set (3 items): +120 Defense Set (4 items): 10% Life stolen per hit Set (5 items): 10% Mana stolen per hit Set (6 items): Freezes target +2 (2 items): +50 to Attack Rating (3 items): +75 to Attack Rating Jeremy's Arreat's Face Slayer Guard Defense: 360 Durability: 51 of 55 Required Level: 42 Required Strength: 118 Fingerprint: 0x3e16d11e Item Level: 86 Version: Expansion 1.10+ +2 to Combat Skills (Barbarian Only) +2 to Barbarian Skill Levels +15% Increased Attack Speed +30% Faster Hit Recovery 20% Bonus to Attack Rating 5% Life stolen per hit +198% Enhanced Defense +20 to Strength +20 to Dexterity All Resistances +30 8% Damage Taken Goes To Mana 1 Sockets (1 used) Socketed: Dun Jewel of Fervor Dun Jewel of Fervor Jewel Required Level: 31 Fingerprint: 0xf94c45f7 Item Level: 45 Version: Expansion 1.10+ +15% Increased Attack Speed 8% Damage Taken Goes To Mana Gull Dagger One Hand Damage: 2 - 19 Durability: 16 of 16 Required Level: 4 Fingerprint: 0x194decf8 Item Level: 15 Version: Expansion 1.10+ Adds 1 - 15 Damage -5 to Mana 100% Better Chance of Getting Magic Items Heart Carver Rondel One Hand Damage: 44 - 110 Durability: 20 of 20 Required Level: 36 Required Strength: 25 Required Dexterity: 58 Fingerprint: 0xbae30ea0 Item Level: 87 Version: Expansion 1.10+ 192% Enhanced Damage Adds 15 - 35 Damage Ignore Target's Defense 35% Deadly Strike +4 to Grim Ward (Barbarian Only) +4 to Find Item (Barbarian Only) +4 to Find Potion (Barbarian Only) Charms: Short version: Assortment totaling 538 AR, 13 max damage, 12% FHR, 3 Dex, 20 poison res, 50 poison damage, 3% FRW, 23% MF, 132% GF while leaving room for cube, TP tome, keys, and 2x4 open space Long Version: Spoiler Sharp Grand Charm Grand Charm Required Level: 21 Fingerprint: 0x3e3b8859 Item Level: 86 Version: Expansion 1.10+ +8 to Maximum Damage +72 to Attack Rating Viridian Small Charm of Inertia Small Charm Required Level: 27 Fingerprint: 0x4631b45 Item Level: 49 Version: Expansion 1.10+ +3% Faster Run/Walk Poison Resist +6% Viridian Small Charm Small Charm Required Level: 10 Fingerprint: 0xdb51f19a Item Level: 23 Version: Expansion 1.10+ Poison Resist +7% Viridian Small Charm Small Charm Required Level: 10 Fingerprint: 0x77f49d5c Item Level: 23 Version: Expansion 1.10+ Poison Resist +7% Steel Small Charm of Anthrax Small Charm Required Level: 49 Fingerprint: 0x85de3a27 Item Level: 81 Version: Expansion 1.10+ +32 to Attack Rating Adds 50 Poison Damage Over 6 Secs (150 Frames) Fine Small Charm Small Charm Required Level: 21 Fingerprint: 0x84cb8bad Item Level: 82 Version: Expansion 1.10+ +2 to Maximum Damage +17 to Attack Rating Steel Large Charm of Dexterity Large Charm Required Level: 44 Fingerprint: 0xaf1027ce Item Level: 84 Version: Expansion 1.10+ +72 to Attack Rating +3 to Dexterity Gheed's Fortune Grand Charm Required Level: 62 Fingerprint: 0x69cd4401 Item Level: 86 Version: Expansion 1.10+ 132% Extra Gold from Monsters Reduces all Vendor Prices 14% 23% Better Chance of Getting Magic Items Iron Grand Charm of Maiming Grand Charm Required Level: 63 Fingerprint: 0x60f8fd9e Item Level: 85 Version: Expansion 1.10+ +3 to Maximum Damage +82 to Attack Rating Steel Grand Charm Grand Charm Required Level: 29 Fingerprint: 0x5b556f3a Item Level: 60 Version: Expansion 1.10+ +95 to Attack Rating Iron Small Charm Small Charm Required Level: 31 Fingerprint: 0x7b381ef9 Item Level: 68 Version: Expansion 1.10+ +20 to Attack Rating Steel Grand Charm of Balance Grand Charm Required Level: 29 Fingerprint: 0xef383cdc Item Level: 77 Version: Expansion 1.10+ +12% Faster Hit Recovery +90 to Attack Rating Steel Large Charm Large Charm Required Level: 36 Fingerprint: 0x8205915d Item Level: 51 Version: Expansion 1.10+ +58 to Attack Rating Mercenary: Short version: A2 NM Offensive Tal’s Mask Duriel’s Shell Insight Thresher Long version: Spoiler Mercenary: Name: Hazade Race: Desert Mercenary Type: Off-Nightmare Experience: 88458924 Level: 90 Dead?: false Naked/Gear Strength: 195/215 Dexterity: 157/162 HP: 1967/2117 Defense: 1444/2232 AR: 1970/486590 Fire: 189/149/89 Cold: 219/179/119 Lightning: 189/149/89 Poison: 189/149/89 Duriel's Shell Cuirass Defense: 670 Durability: 43 of 150 Required Level: 41 Required Strength: 65 Fingerprint: 0xad1fa3cc Item Level: 87 Version: Expansion 1.10+ +175% Enhanced Defense +112 Defense (Based on Character Level) +15 to Strength +90 to Life (Based on Character Level) Cold Resist +30% All Resistances +20 Cannot Be Frozen +100 Maximum Durability Tal Rasha's Horadric Crest Death Mask Defense: 118 Durability: 19 of 20 Required Level: 66 Required Strength: 55 Fingerprint: 0x13e0fc9d Item Level: 87 Version: Expansion 1.10+ 10% Mana stolen per hit 10% Life stolen per hit +45 Defense +60 to Life +30 to Mana All Resistances +15 Insight Thresher RalTirTalSol Two Hand Damage: 48 - 461 Durability: 32 of 65 Required Level: 53 Required Strength: 152 Required Dexterity: 118 Fingerprint: 0xb7334dae Item Level: 82 Version: Expansion 1.10+ Level 14 Meditation Aura When Equipped +35% Faster Cast Rate 227% Enhanced Damage +9 to Minimum Damage 246% Bonus to Attack Rating Adds 5 - 30 Fire Damage Adds 75 Poison Damage Over 5 Secs (125 Frames) +6 to Critical Strike All Stats +5 +2 to Mana after each Kill 23% Better Chance of Getting Magic Items 4 Sockets (4 used) Socketed: Ral Rune Socketed: Tir Rune Socketed: Tal Rune Socketed: Sol Rune Ral Rune Required Level: 19 Version: Expansion 1.10+ Weapons: Adds 5 - 30 Fire Damage Armor: Fire Resist +30% Shields: Fire Resist +35% Tir Rune Required Level: 13 Version: Expansion 1.10+ Weapons: +2 to Mana after each Kill Armor: +2 to Mana after each Kill Shields: +2 to Mana after each Kill Tal Rune Required Level: 17 Version: Expansion 1.10+ Weapons: Adds 75 Poison Damage Over 5 Secs (125 Frames) Armor: Poison Resist +30% Shields: Poison Resist +35% Sol Rune Required Level: 27 Version: Expansion 1.10+ Weapons: +9 to Minimum Damage Armor: Damage Reduced by 7 Shields: Damage Reduced by 7 Observations, finds, and random musings (per usual, text wall ahead): Firstly, I found this character much safer than Cameron or Milo. Despite generally running with zero defense and not using a shield, the high life pool, damage reduction, and amazing crowd control made almost any situation a breeze. As with the previous two boys, I did Normal and Nightmare on /players8, Hell Acts 1-2 on /players7, and acts 3-5 on /players5. The only death while questing occurred when fighting Amp Witches + Frenzytaurs in the Hell Infernal Pit. And even then, I only died because I was also watching TV at the same time. I have seen others describe Howl as a panic button of sorts, and that is an excellent description. Anytime things got too dangerous, one blast of Howl and the situation was instantly 98% safer. When fighting fewer but tougher enemies (including bosses, who can’t be Howled), Battle Cry was great. It cut enemy damage by >25%, and essentially made sure my attacks never missed with >50% reduced enemy defense. Lastly, when there were too many ranged enemies (or they had meatshields of their own), Taunt was great at luring them in close. Taunt is particularly useful against Unravelers, as not only do they have hordes of minions in front of them, but they are frequently magic immune and a semi-synergized 1-point Concentrate only kills so quickly. Still, concentrate even with only 1 point invested, was still a very viable Magic Immune solution (hitting for about ~4-7k damage). Berserk itself is great. HUGE damage and AR bonuses, very useful synergies, and very few immunes (easily dealt with). I encountered one (79) dual immune in the Lost City, and although I could have steadily whittled him down, nobody has time for that! I chose to go for max damage based on skill selection, and balance that with survivability based on items. In the end I think it was a good decision as my life pool was plenty high with only 10 hard points placed in BO. As this character is not a dedicated MFer, it seemed smart to skip Find Potion/Find Item and get FI from Heart Carver on switch. I had 37% hork after + skills, I think. Still not bad! Some of you will surely question some of my gear choices, although I assure you that every piece of equipment used serves a very specific purpose. Arreat’s Face is all-around goodness with +skills, FHR, %AR, stats, and resists all proving useful to this build – the leech and defense are the only non-useful mods. Plus add an open socket for more IAS and it was a no-brainer. Having the ‘dun’ prefix on the jewel was a nice touch too, as even with Insight mana didn’t go back up instantly after getting mana burned and I could visibly see my mana jump right back up after getting hit by burners on many occasions. A nice little insurance policy. Treachery was massively useful – huge and badly needed IAS, a massive resist boost (very appreciated when running shieldless), and some %DR never hurts when getting constantly hit (even if applied after iPDR). Given Fade is based on a 5% CTC when struck mod, it seemed almost tailor-made for a zero-defense character. It triggered rapidly and almost never wore off while questing. Even when doing Eldritch/Thresh runs at the end to level a little more, I was faded about 3/4 of the time after finishing with Eldritch and on my way to Thresh. The IK 3-piece was a surprisingly good fit for this build, as it rounded out my IAS needs, gave a nice bump to FHR (hitting a high breakpoint here seemed important with zero defense…), topped off my fire and light res, has huge stat bonuses (thus allowing more points in vita and a 3.2k life pool with only 10 hard points in BO, again important without any defense!), a nice little bit of MF (something I always like in my builds), good boosts to AR and life, and the +2 combat skills is actually pretty useful for this build due to the big, linear damage boosts afforded by each level of Berserk combined with the huge base damage of the weapon. Ravenfrost was for AR and CBF, per usual, but what about those other two pieces of lol-worthy jewely? Well, in short this reduces incoming physical damage of normal monsters by ~25-30% in most cases. Of course, +2 barb skills on top of the iPDR would’ve been fantastic, but this was still a useful item. Regarding the ring, I valued AR very highly as Berserk is a slow(ish) single-target attack, and I didn’t want to miss! Tack on some MF and that ring seemed just fine to me. I didn’t need resists or leech, so why not? Sure, this character could have been turned into more of an offensive machine than he already was, but he probably would’ve died a whole lot, too. Put on Gores, Guillaume’s, and Highlord’s, and you get the classic 100/100 CB/DS, but it results in a glass cannon with only moderately more killing power than this guy already has. Death (40) is an incredible weapon, with 50% CB, 45% DS (scaling), huge %ED, and the Indestructible mod. When combined with big %ED from Berserk, it leads to some fun LCS numbers. The 25% CTC Glacial Spike, while not triggering as frequently as I would have liked or freezing for as long as I would have liked, was still a nice little source of crowd control and damage reduction. With a faster attack, it would probably keep most non-CI mobs frozen almost constantly. One particularly satisfying aspect of this character is that my previous two characters almost single-handedly generated his Death (similar to how Milo found two key jewels for Cameron's Tomb Reaver). Milo found the 15% ED ethereal superior Silver-Edged Axe and scored a Gul off his Hellforge, and Cameron found the Vex when he was nearly done leveling in AT. Such helpful little brothers! As always, I try to run with at least 50% (preferably 100%+) MF on my characters, to make the drops a little more exciting along the way. With this character I also had the opportunity to hork, which is something I’ve never done in earnest before. This guy had 71% MF on kill and 171% on switch (37% chance to hork), and drops were decent on the journey to 90, mostly while leveling against Eldritch and Thresh. Things started off with a handy little charm very early on, and a Riphook from normal Diablo was surprising. Nightmare had nothing useful to offer, but once in Hell I finally started getting some better finds including three Jade Talons, Sazabi’s Ghost Liberator, Hellslayer, some nice rare gloves, a Druid elemental skiller, that previously-reported Ber Rune, Bonehew, Titan’s Revenge, Lacerator, a Necro summoning skiller, crappy Shadow Dancers, 2/25 Shadow Dancers, Earth Shifter, M’avina’s True Sight (last missing piece to that set!), Medusa’s Gaze, and a 3/26 Boneflame. Hellforges were Fal in NM and Fal in Hell. My one pass at the Countess in hell yielded yet another Fal. Meh. x3. I found this corpse corpse entertaining; how have I never noticed that before? Have you ever been trapped by Alkor before? A massively powerful barbarian and I can’t even shove that old man out of my way. Embarassing. Faded characters are fun because of how easily they can hide behind blizzards. At level 90 minus 40M exp, I went to the Summit to challenge the Ancients. They were a walk in the park. Just tanked all three of them at once and used maybe 3 big reds. The WSK itself was much tougher. Baal went down quickly and dropped crap (+LCS on kill). TL;DR: This character was a blast. Make Death! Make a berserker! Last but not least: If by some miracle you're still reading, I wanted to ask the community: Do you generally enjoy Mat/Pat threads, even if they're of fairly cookie-cutter builds? I'm still working my way through a lot of the basic D2 builds but I enjoy sharing my thoughts and experiences, in the hope that they're valuable or at least enjoyable to others. I see so many crazy builds by wealthier players these days that mine feel pretty bland. Be honest in your answer; I won't be offended if you find posts like this boring. I just don't want to waste anyone's time if that's the case! Thanks for reading!