Barbarian Combat Masteries

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Barbarian Skills

The Barbarian's Combat Masteries are essential skills for every Barbarian. Maximizing one of the six types of weapon mastery is standard practice, for the added damage, to/hit, and critical hits. The other four passive bonuses are all quite useful as well, though most players are content with just a few points in them.


Contents

[edit] Sword Mastery

Sword-mastery.jpg
Required Level: 1

Prerequisites: None
Notes: This skill's bonuses only apply when a Barbarian has a sword equipped. Be sure you know the difference between swords and daggers! Daggers, whether melee or throwing, receive no bonus from Sword Mastery.

Every type of swords has a fast swing rate for the Barbarian, and they do very big damage when wielded two-handed, almost as much as the biggest items of the other weapon types. Swords have at most a range of 3, less than spears and polearms, but swing much faster, and can be wielded with a shield when you need defense, or two-handed for bigger damage, or dual wielded with a sword.

Using a big sword and a low damage MF one, such as the Blade of Ali Baba or the Gull Dagger, is a very nice way to add good MF without hurting your killing power too badly.

Skill Level Progression [e]
Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

1 28% 28% 3% 6 53% 68% 13% 11 78% 108% 17% 16 103% 148% 20%
2 33% 36% 6% 7 58% 76% 14% 12 83% 116% 18% 17 108% 156% 20%
3 38% 44% 9% 8 63% 84% 15% 13 88% 124% 18% 18 113% 164% 20%
4 43% 52% 11% 9 68% 92% 16% 14 93% 132% 19% 19 118% 172% 20%
5 48% 60% 12% 10 73% 100% 17% 15 98% 140% 19% 20 123% 180% 21%




[edit] Axe Mastery

Axe-mastery.jpg
Required Level: 1

Prerequisites: None
Notes: Bonuses only apply when a Barbarian has an axe equipped. Both types of throwing axes receive bonuses from Axe Mastery when used for melee combat, but not when thrown. (Throwing Mastery applies then.)

Axes don't have any real advantages over Mauls, Spears, or Polearms. Spears and Mauls do more damage, and Spears and Polearms do as much or more damage, and have better range, which helps with WW. Axes have low or no Dex requirements though, and lower Str reqs than Mauls. HK's edit: for classic: the naga (1 handed) has a range of 3 and no dex req and less str req though less damage than a bh (battle hammer). some prefer a naga to a bh for its range when doing ww bvb. the aa (ancient axe) (2 handed) does less damage than mart/lance/exe but it also has no dex req and less str req and a range of 4. this is nice for pvm if u don't wanna waste much stat pts for weapon req and its range 4.

Skill Level Progression [e]
Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

1 28% 28% 3% 6 53% 68% 13% 11 78% 108% 17% 16 103% 148% 20%
2 33% 36% 6% 7 58% 76% 14% 12 83% 116% 18% 17 108% 156% 20%
3 38% 44% 9% 8 63% 84% 15% 13 88% 124% 18% 18 113% 164% 20%
4 43% 52% 11% 9 68% 92% 16% 14 93% 132% 19% 19 118% 172% 20%
5 48% 60% 12% 10 73% 100% 17% 15 98% 140% 19% 20 123% 180% 21%




[edit] Mace Mastery

Mace-mastery.jpg
Required Level: 1

Prerequisites: None
Notes: Bonuses only apply when a Barbarian has a mace-type weapon equipped. Maces are viable one-handed or two-handed, though it's extremely difficult to find big damage one-handed maces. Mauls and Great Mauls have a range of 3, same as the biggest swords, but less than Polearms and Spears, so you will get fewer hits per WW. HK's edit: for classic: bh (battle hammer) (1 handed) does highest damage (and 50% to undead) for 1 handers and has no dex req but higher str req than the naga and only range 1. but most people still use this for ww bvb due to it being the highest damage 1 hander though its range 1 can hurt it (you) in a duel. mart (martel de fer) (2 handed) (50% to undead) does 2nd highest damage (lance is highest damage) and no dex req but higher str req than aa and only a range of 3. many use the bs (bonesnap, a unique 2 hander that does good damage and has CB and resists) until they find a godly rare mart and dont need the extra CB (crushing blow). bs is the cookie-cutter (common) weapon for the common (and non-godly geared) mace ww barb.

Skill Level Progression [e]
Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

1 28% 28% 3% 6 53% 68% 13% 11 78% 108% 17% 16 103% 148% 20%
2 33% 36% 6% 7 58% 76% 14% 12 83% 116% 18% 17 108% 156% 20%
3 38% 44% 9% 8 63% 84% 15% 13 88% 124% 18% 18 113% 164% 20%
4 43% 52% 11% 9 68% 92% 16% 14 93% 132% 19% 19 118% 172% 20%
5 48% 60% 12% 10 73% 100% 17% 15 98% 140% 19% 20 123% 180% 21%




[edit] Polearm Mastery

Pole-arm-mastery.jpg
Required Level: 6

Prerequisites: None
Notes: Bonuses only apply when the Barbarian has a polearm equipped. All polearms are two-handed weapons, and tend to have high damage and long range, but slow attack speed, so an effective build must take these factors into consideration.

Polearms are not very often used, and for good reason. They have a decent attack rate, but are all two-handed weapons, and do less damage than comparable spears, while having very high Str and Dex requirements. They do have longer range than any Swords, Axes, or Mauls, and some players like them.

Skill Level Progression [e]
Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

1 28% 30% 3% 6 53% 70% 13% 11 78% 110% 17% 16 103% 150% 20%
2 33% 38% 6% 7 58% 78% 14% 12 83% 118% 18% 17 108% 158% 20%
3 38% 46% 9% 8 63% 86% 15% 13 88% 126% 18% 18 113% 166% 20%
4 43% 54% 11% 9 68% 94% 16% 14 93% 134% 19% 19 118% 174% 20%
5 48% 62% 12% 10 73% 102% 17% 15 98% 142% 19% 20 123% 182% 21%




[edit] Throwing Mastery

Throwing-mastery.jpg
Required Level: 6

Prerequisites: None
Notes: Damage bonuses apply only to thrown weapons. Not to throwing weapons used for melee.

Throwing Mastery is seldom used, but a throwing barb is a useful character, though they begin to suffer by Hell, since throwing only hits one target per attack. This is a possible secondary skill, used to attack some monsters from a distance, but it's not often done.

Another way is to compliment a War Cry Barbarian with throwing, using the Warcries to send monsters running and to stun them.

Skill Level Progression [e]
Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

1 28% 30% 3% 6 53% 70% 13% 11 78% 110% 17% 16 103% 150% 20%
2 33% 38% 6% 7 58% 78% 14% 12 83% 118% 18% 17 108% 158% 20%
3 38% 46% 9% 8 63% 86% 15% 13 88% 126% 18% 18 113% 166% 20%
4 43% 54% 11% 9 68% 94% 16% 14 93% 134% 19% 19 118% 174% 20%
5 48% 62% 12% 10 73% 102% 17% 15 98% 142% 19% 20 123% 182% 21%




[edit] Spear Mastery

Spear-mastery.jpg
Required Level: 6

Prerequisites: None
Notes: Bonuses only apply when a Barbarian has a spear equipped. Javelins are a type of spear, and this skill will boost their damage when used for melee, but not when thrown. Throwing Mastery comes into effect then.

Spears are very big damage weapons, and once Lances were finally enabled in D2, they became by far the most popular weapons for WW Barbarians, due to their huge damage and range. They aren't as useful in D2X due to the Attack Speed being so slow, but with some decent IAS on the Spear and more on gloves and other items, and the massive damage of a Cruel War Pike, this is the most effective WW weapon.

It's less useful for other combat though. Berserk is a slow hit with a spear, even with IAS equipment, and spears have relatively high Dex requirements.

Skill Level Progression [e]
Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

Slvl Damage +X%

AR +X%

Critical Strike Chance +X%

1 28% 30% 3% 6 53% 70% 13% 11 78% 110% 17% 16 103% 150% 20%
2 33% 38% 6% 7 58% 78% 14% 12 83% 118% 18% 17 108% 158% 20%
3 38% 46% 9% 8 63% 86% 15% 13 88% 126% 18% 18 113% 166% 20%
4 43% 54% 11% 9 68% 94% 16% 14 93% 134% 19% 19 118% 174% 20%
5 48% 62% 12% 10 73% 102% 17% 15 98% 142% 19% 20 123% 182% 21%




[edit] Increased Stamina

Increased-stamina.jpg
Required Level: 12

Prerequisites: None
Notes:A prerequisite for the all-but-mandatory Increased Speed, few Barbarians spend more than one point in this skill, since Barbarians tend to add a lot of points to Vitality, and that adds to stamina as well.

Skill Level Progression [e]
Slvl Stamina +X%

Slvl Stamina +X%

Slvl Stamina +X%

Slvl Stamina +X%

1 30% 6 105% 11 180% 16 255%
2 45% 7 120% 12 195% 17 270%
3 60% 8 135% 13 210% 18 285%
4 75% 9 150% 14 225% 19 300%
5 90% 10 165% 15 240% 20 315%




[edit] Iron Skin

Iron-skin.jpg
Required Level: 18

Prerequisites: None
Notes: Iron Skin greatly increases the Barbarian's defense, and is a prerequisite for the extremely-useful Natural Resistance. Most barbarians are fine with just a few points in this skill, but builds that require high defense will want to max it, and pair it with high level Shout for the utmost defensive capacity.

Skill Level Progression [e]
Slvl Defense +X%

Slvl Defense +X%

Slvl Defense +X%

Slvl Defense +X%

1 30% 6 80% 11 130% 16 180%
2 40% 7 90% 12 140% 17 190%
3 50% 8 100% 13 150% 18 200%
4 60% 9 110% 14 160% 19 210%
5 70% 10 120% 15 170% 20 220%




[edit] Increased Speed

Increased-speed.jpg
Required Level: 24

Prerequisites: Increased Stamina
Notes: A very popular skill, simply for the convenience and fun of running much more quickly. Very helpful in PVP combat as well, a high level barbarian with points in this and fast run equipment can move with frightening speed.

Skill Level Progression [e]
Slvl Walk Run Speed +X%

Slvl Walk Run Speed +X%

Slvl Walk Run Speed +X%

Slvl Walk Run Speed +X%

1 13% 6 30% 11 37% 16 41%
2 18% 7 32% 12 38% 17 41%
3 22% 8 33% 13 39% 18 42%
4 25% 9 35% 14 40% 19 42%
5 28% 10 36% 15 40% 20 43%




[edit] Natural Resistance

Natural-resistance.jpg
Required Level: 30

Prerequisites: Iron Skin
Notes: One of the most powerful passive skills in the game, Natural Resistance allows Barbarians to go with much more offensive equipment, since this skill can add as much resistance as a good shield. Diminishing returns set heavily on this skill past about level five, but more points still help, and +skill equipment work nicely with this and all the Barbarian's other passive skills.

Skill Level Progression [e]
Slvl Elemental Resistances +X%

Slvl Elemental Resistances +X%

Slvl Elemental Resistances +X%

Slvl Elemental Resistances +X%

1 12% 6 44% 11 56% 16 64%
2 21% 7 47% 12 58% 17 64%
3 28% 8 49% 13 60% 18 65%
4 35% 9 52% 14 61% 19 66%
5 40% 10 54% 15 62% 20 67%