8 Reaper of Souls Tips to Make Your Crusader a Superhero

8 Reaper of Souls Tips to Make Your Crusader a Superhero

The new Crusader class in Diablo III: Reaper of Souls really is overpowered. Kind of like a superhero

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Yea, I'm kinda obsessed with my Crusader. It's way more fun than it has any right to be.

Also, Thorns Crusaders are the best thing ever. If you get ~8,000 thorns damage from gear, you can build a crusader that utterly destroys pretty much everything in Torment I. The build looks like this, and it is amazingly effective.

And that's without any of the fun legendaries. If you can get the Sanguinary Vambraces, Vo'Toyias Spiker, and the Thorns of the Invoker set with half-decent rolls, you'd be the next best thing to completely unstoppable.

I approve of this. Mostly because it isn't really a guide so much as a helper.

(Because fuck guides, right guys?)

But no really, Crusaders are superheroes. I know everyone's crying that they're like, totally not the best or whatever (why am I a valley-girl all of a sudden), but they're fun as all hell. Heck. Torment. Whatever.

Although Shield Bash needs a buff. It's really cool conceptually, but for some reason all it's good for right now is charging as a utility spell.

OH, also, the final rune for Heaven's Fury is pretty much the funniest Wrath spender ever, if you want to feel like a prism for heaven beams, shooting Jesus's thumbs up straight into everyone's face. Jesus, Man.

Haha! Nice man! I'll definitely try your builds out. One thing though, the journey to the true top-tier gems is anything but "brief", unless you were lucky enough to have made out like a bandit on the Auction House before it shut down and have tons of disposable cash. For newbies, the journey to those top level emeralds might be...a bit more than a few trips into the rift. (Or bounties.) Just a heads-up to the newer players. What's nice though, at least in my opinion, is the game is fun and I want to run those rifts so I can make the money I need to improve my gems. Gives the game a nice end-game purpose.

There's actually a hammer legendary is Thor's Hammer: http://us.battle.net/d3/en/item/odyn-son

My experience playing the Crusader:

1. Shield builds suck. They are conceptually nice, but just don't work all that well. Building around block is laughable, as the numbers on block-related stuff are terrible. Also, notice that stuff like Shield Bash scales off Block Chance - You know, that number that generally moves in between 10-40 range. In a game where even mig-range damage is in the hundreds of thousands. Yeah, it just doesn't scale past low levels.

2. Wielding 2H weapons in one hand sounds cool, but in actuality it's kinda bad. 2H weapons aren't much stronger (if at all) than 1H weapons, and you have to give up a passive skill slot (which you desperately need for other stuff) AND eat a movement speed penalty. Only use it if you have a really good 2H weapon that would provide a massive boost to your stats and drop it as soon as you get a comparable 1H weapon.

3. Slower weapons are kinda better. A lot of your abilities are cooldown based, so Attack speed has little to no impact on them. However, raw damage will let you get more out of them on every cooldown. This is the one saving grace of Heavenly Strength, as 2H weapons are usually slower. But you will also find slow 1H weapons, so in the long run 2H tends to fall off.

4. Condemn is your friend, especially early on. So is Heaven's Fury. Falling Sword looks cool, but is kinda crap as it has both a long-ass cooldown AND a Wrath cost. Laws are a waste of slot for the most part, unless you're in a group. Phalanx is terrible, except with the Bowmen rune, which turns it into a solid, cool skill. For Wrath spenders, I suggest looking into Sweep Attack - It's among the higher damage ones, it's a decent AoE and it's reliable. I've heard good things about Heaven's Fury with Fires of Heaven rune. For Wrath builders, Punish is kinda pointless, but the rest are fine. I personally use Slash with the Crush rune

5. For Passives, I consider Righteousness almost mandatory. Wrath is a pain in the arse to generate and this mitigates that issue. Holy Cause can be awesome if you focus more on Holy damage, as the healing it provides is quite decent. One slot might have to go to Heavenly Strength, depending on your gear. For the rest, it's mostly up to you, though stuff like Wrathful, Indestructible, Divine Fortress and Vigilant are decent picks.

Jandau:

1. Shield builds suck. They are conceptually nice, but just don't work all that well. Building around block is laughable, as the numbers on block-related stuff are terrible. Also, notice that stuff like Shield Bash scales off Block Chance - You know, that number that generally moves in between 10-40 range. In a game where even mig-range damage is in the hundreds of thousands. Yeah, it just doesn't scale past low levels.

I interpreted the block chance scaling differently, having it just be 300% of the actual chance number just doesn't make any sense because it maxes out at 75% total. I have to wonder if they meant the block amount or just translates into another weapon damage percentage based on your block chance.

Anyway, my overall impression with the crusader has been that condemn is one of the best skills I have found in the game, and all their right click skills are basically worthless besides the flail swing with the fire damage rune.

LostCrusader:
Anyway, my overall impression with the crusader has been that condemn is one of the best skills I have found in the game, and all their right click skills are basically worthless besides the flail swing with the fire damage rune.

Which is funny, because that rune is bugged to shit right now and doesn't work at all. It uses your weapon damage pre-calculation to determine it's damage, meaning it does 160% of your weapons damage... without any of the associated stat boosts you should get with it. It's (as of time of writing) one of the most useless runes the Crusader has.

Jandau:
1. Shield builds suck. They are conceptually nice, but just don't work all that well. Building around block is laughable, as the numbers on block-related stuff are terrible. Also, notice that stuff like Shield Bash scales off Block Chance - You know, that number that generally moves in between 10-40 range. In a game where even mig-range damage is in the hundreds of thousands. Yeah, it just doesn't scale past low levels.

As a Crusader, if your block chance is less than 25%, you're doing something wrong. You should have a fairly consistent 25-30% unbuffed block with potential to jump up to 40-50% in combat depending on spec.

That said, if you're using block as damage mitigation, you are also doing something wrong. The primary reason for block is all the fun things that block triggers, like 70% of your weapon damage return, an item proc (look up the Coven's Criterion for the best example), etc. It's definitely worthwhile.

Jandau:
2. Wielding 2H weapons in one hand sounds cool, but in actuality it's kinda bad. 2H weapons aren't much stronger (if at all) than 1H weapons, and you have to give up a passive skill slot (which you desperately need for other stuff) AND eat a movement speed penalty. Only use it if you have a really good 2H weapon that would provide a massive boost to your stats and drop it as soon as you get a comparable 1H weapon.

3. Slower weapons are kinda better. A lot of your abilities are cooldown based, so Attack speed has little to no impact on them. However, raw damage will let you get more out of them on every cooldown. This is the one saving grace of Heavenly Strength, as 2H weapons are usually slower. But you will also find slow 1H weapons, so in the long run 2H tends to fall off.

The Crusader is tailor-made to use 2h weapons. In terms of stats, 2h isn't that much better (though it does quantifiably roll values in a ~30% higher range), but it is very rare for a 1h weapon to have a comparable damage range as a 2h. In the 70 legendaries, most 1h are in the 1900-2300 damage range, while 2H are typically in the 2500-2900 damage range. There's obviously outliers in either direction for both, but that's a good rule of thumb.

As you said, Crusader damage abilities are cooldown-based, and that means that the weapon's damage per swing is the important part, not the big number it spits out at the top of the tooltip (read: the dps). 2H are pretty much always the way to go, unless you're going for a particular build, and most of those are less "use 1h" and more "use this particular item that happens to be a 1h"

Also, just for clarity's sake since I made the same mistake, Heavenly Strength does not reduce your movement speed; it reduces your maximum movement speed. By default, the max speed you can move at is 125%. Heavenly Strength lowers that limit to 110%. That's it. It does not reduce your current move speed by 15%.

Jandau:
4. Condemn is your friend, especially early on. So is Heaven's Fury. Falling Sword looks cool, but is kinda crap as it has both a long-ass cooldown AND a Wrath cost. Laws are a waste of slot for the most part, unless you're in a group. Phalanx is terrible, except with the Bowmen rune, which turns it into a solid, cool skill. For Wrath spenders, I suggest looking into Sweep Attack - It's among the higher damage ones, it's a decent AoE and it's reliable. I've heard good things about Heaven's Fury with Fires of Heaven rune. For Wrath builders, Punish is kinda pointless, but the rest are fine. I personally use Slash with the Crush rune

120% agree on Condemn and Heaven's Fury, fantastic abilities there, and on Phalanx, waste of a spell that it is. The rest I disagree on to some extent or another.

Falling Sword can be very good if you get a handle on the aiming and learn when best to use it. It's more finicky than the others, but it has a lot of utility beyond just the damage (which is considerable, especially with the spawn minions rune), what with being able to teleport over walls and other assorted environment hazards with it.

The Laws are very good, but they really don't come into their own until 60+. They're useful, certainly, but they really need the extra effects of their runes to really be as good as they can be. Especially the resist all law. Its final rune is "you are immune to CC and/or can use this to break CC"; it's goddamn amazing when farming torment, not to mention the 1.5 pieces of gear worth of resist all it gives you passively.

Finally, Punish is a very good ability. It's quite slow compared to the other wrath builders, but it has some fantastic additional effects from the runes that make it great. My personal favorite is the 70% weapon damage dealt to attacker of a blocked attack, but there's several others (like increased life regen or crit chance after blocking) that are just as good.

Jandau:
5. For Passives, I consider Righteousness almost mandatory. Wrath is a pain in the arse to generate and this mitigates that issue. Holy Cause can be awesome if you focus more on Holy damage, as the healing it provides is quite decent. One slot might have to go to Heavenly Strength, depending on your gear. For the rest, it's mostly up to you, though stuff like Wrathful, Indestructible, Divine Fortress and Vigilant are decent picks.

Righteousness is very necessary for any build that makes much use of wrath. I, personally, ditched it entirely in my current build (because thorns), but just about any other build requires it.

As a general rule of thumb, most Crusaders can expect to be using Heavenly Strength, Righteousness, and (gear depending) Finery, with the final slot being whatever's best suited to their individual playstyle and ideas about the build. My personal preference is for the "lose all dodge for 15% block chance" one, but there's some valid arguments for most of the passives.

I don't know how well it'll carry on into higher difficulties but I'm currently running a "black hole" crusader which is melting zergs like butter - it revolves around pre-casting Iron Skin/Explosive Skin and the Falling Sword/Superheated into the middle of a pack casting Condemn/Vacuum and Heaven's Fury/Split Fury or Blessed Ground, everything get pulled towards you and dies while you sit there maintaining Punish/Roar and spamming Sweep Attack/Blazing Sweep with silly amounts of armour and blocks making you explode.

Anyone else use something like this?

God bless the internet...
"Here is this new thing that someone has given us. Pristine, untouched, something for us to explore, understand, and perfect...LET'S TURN IT INTO AN AVENGER! :D"

Though, points for that bit of Liam Neeson at the end there...can't wait to try a couple of these ideas.

Micah Weil:
God bless the internet...

Though, points for that bit of Liam Neeson at the end there...can't wait to try a couple of these ideas.

LOL, Forgot Neeson said that as well. But Black Widow used it when taking to Loki in The Avengers. But saying it in Neeson's voice is much better ...

I have an important tip that every Crusader should take to heart, as of this current patch:

DO NOT USE SHIELD BASH IF YOU ARE FACING A JAILER.
Actually let me make this clearer...

DO NOT USE SHIELD BASH IF YOU ARE FACING A JAILER.

This will desync you from the server and you will be bluntly fucked.
Technically, any sort of ability that allows one to move out of the 'jail' will do this, but looking up the issue on forums, it's 90% Crusaders at least.

Other than that, here is my current build. It's meant to have Shield Bash, but... well.
Needs more crit too, but right now, unless I pull three elite packs at once, I pretty much do not die, and I could be even more resilient if I changed Consecrate's rune.
... of course, it can't kill anything in under five minutes or so.

 

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