Whirlwind Barbarian

DwayneGAnd

Diabloii.Net Member
Though the Barbarian is my least favorite class, this is my favorite way to make him. Whirlwind turns the Barbarian into a human blender-tornado hybrid, spinning through crowds of enemies and chopping them up as he passes by. Whirlwind is the only combat skill that allows the barbarian to attack multiple targets (more than two anyway), which explains why it is so popular among players.

Unfortunately, Whirlwind is probably the weakest of the top combat skills the barbarian has due to the lack of synergies, the lower attack rating bonus, and the fact that it actually reduces your damage for the first few levels, just like the Amazon's Strafe. The high mana cost requires you to have a source of mana leech in order to use it full-time. You also need to get it to high levels and have a very powerful weapon in order to deal lots of damage in one spin. Whirlwind in my opinion would have been more effective if it was a channeled skill, just like it was in Diablo III, and where you could spin wherever you held down the mouse button and slowly draining your mana.

Whirlwind also requires you to equip weapons that increase your melee range for the best effect, such as spears and polearms, though other weapons can also increase the range of your melee attacks. Also, I think attack speed is also taken into consideration. For some strange reason, I could never inflict more than two hits on an enemy in one spin.

Doesn't this guy ever get dizzy? If I tried spinning like that, I would stagger and fall down.

Until you can get Whirlwind to deal sufficient damage and have mana leech, you'll need to rely on Concentrate to get you through the game from level 18. Fortunately, you can leave it at level 1 and just pump Battle Orders which is a damage synergy for it. Battle Orders is the first skill I pumped. Once Whirlwind became available, I pumped both skills until I ran out of reserved skill points and then will max Whirlwind before Battle Orders. Weapon Mastery is the only skill that actually increases the damage of whirlwind. Shout is also maxed endgame to increase the duration of both Battle Command which is kept at level 1, and Battle Orders. Iron Skin, Natural Resistances, Increased Stamina, and Increased Speed all get 1 point as well. Taunt and Battle Cry are also good skills. Taunt forces certain monsters to fight in melee range, making them easier to take out, and Battle Cry reduces damage and defense of enemies, it's great for bosses! Berserk is kept at level 1 and used for physical immunes.

Here is my endgame hireling and equipment setup:

Act 2 Nightmare Offensive
Andariel's Visage (increased skill levels and life leech)
Treachery (increased attack speed and chance to cast fade)
Obediance Cryptic Axe (crushing blow)

Helmet: Guillaume's Face (crushing blow and deadly strike)
Amulet: Highlord's Wrath (increased attack speed, deadly strike, skill level)
Armor: Fortitude Archon Plate (increased resistances and physical damage)
Weapon (Sword, Axe, Maul, Spear, Polearm): Breath of the Dying Colossus Blade, Berserker Axe, Glorious Axe, Thunder Maul, Great Poleaxe, War Pike (increased damage, dual leech, indestructibility, increased attack speed)
Weapon (Mace): Eternity Scourge (indestructibility, increased damage, attack speed, crushing blow, slow target, life leech)
Swap Weapons: 2 Heart of the Oak Flails (increased skill levels of prebuff abilities)
Shield (if using a one handed weapon): Stormshield (increased strength, resistances, physical damage reduction)
Ring 1: Raven Frost (cannot be frozen, increased dexterity)
Ring 2: Rare Dual Leech Ring
Belt: Verdungo's Hearty Coil (increased vitality, physical damage reduction)
Boots: Gore Rider (crushing blow and deadly strike)
Gloves: Laying of Hands (increased attack speed, increased damage to demons)

There is also another equipment setup for if using the Immortal King set.

Helmet: Immortal King's Will
Amulet: Highlord's Wrath (increased attack speed, deadly strike, skill level)
Armor: Immortal King's Soul Cage
Weapon: Immortal King's Stone Crusher
Swap Weapons: 2 Heart of the Oak Flails (increased skill levels of prebuff abilities)
Ring 1: Raven Frost (cannot be frozen, increased dexterity)
Ring 2: Rare Dual Leech Ring
Belt: Immortal King's Detail
Boots: Immortal King's Pillar
Gloves: Immortal King's Forge

The complete set increases skill levels, resistances, and attack rating. Bonuses from wearing multiple items include bonuses to skills, dual leech, increased attack speed, elemental damage, physical damage reduction, and magic find.

Due to the lack of synergies for our main attack, we'll have more points left over for this type build. According to my notes, I'll have 41 skill points left over. I've already spent two to get Battle Cry, which will leave me with 39. How should I spent them? How does my equipment setup for either build look?
 

krischan

Europe Trade Moderator
Maximized WW, weapon mastery, BO, iron skin and every warcry, except grim ward, as well as one point in increased stamina, increased speed and natural resistance. Remaining points go into berserk.

In order to improve horking, I would use e.g. 2x Ali Baba as swap weapons.

BTW, Ravenfrost deals cold damage which makes corpses shatte, so you cannot use find item on them. Besides, WW attack speed cannot be slowed downy, so you don't really need that ring.
 

Kitteh

Diabloii.Net Member
Whirlwind is not the weakest combat skill, it is arguably the strongest. It does not require weapons such as spears and polearms. Shout isn't maxed for duration (if maxed at all), but for the defence boost, duration is a nice extra. Swap the merc's Obedience for Reaper's, decrepify is big help. Treachery is awesome, but not required, Fortitude would be better. Ditch the Eternity. If you're using a BotD, you're probably better off going with one big 2H. Generally though, that isn't going to be optimal and dual Grief is likely going to come out on top.
 

Annambru

Diabloii.Net Member
Well, IF you are going to use WC for pre buff purposes I have another small suggestion: with a tiny part of both CtA Flails value you can get 2 Echoing Weapons (16k gold each) in Act5 hell mode and get slightly better stats with the +6 flat to WC... Talk to Malah every now and then ;)
 

Kitteh

Diabloii.Net Member
Well, IF you are going to use WC for pre buff purposes I have another small suggestion: with a tiny part of both CtA Flails value you can get 2 Echoing Weapons (16k gold each) in Act5 hell mode and get slightly better stats with the +6 flat to WC... Talk to Malah every now and then ;)
Very true in this context. Although for WW barbs using Enigma, dual HotO is preferable for teleporting. Although personally I play HC, so I prefer HotO/Spirit (shield) or Spirit/Spirit (shield) depending on my FHR.
 
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