Teo1904 is one of the best Diablo 2 Lord of Destruction speedrunners in the world. From the inception of D2’s speedrunning scene, he was there to help shape the strategies and techniques people still use to this day. At the peak of his career, he held over two dozen Diablo 2 speedrunning World Records, and even two years later, his past records remain among the top 10 on Speedrun.com. He seeks out the competitive element of any game he plays and is always willing to share his knowledge and experience with others.
Published on August 5th, 2021
Last updated on January 28th, 2023
The Barbarian, the embodiment of strength and will power. Being the master of almost any Weapon type, the Barbarian can overwhelm his enemies with massive Physical Damage. Oh boy is he a motivational speaker, his shouts install fear in his enemies and increase the battle readiness of his allies.
Let's get the elephant out of the room first. The early game for the Barbarian is terrible. If he doesn't have allies or a decent gear set up, he struggles to get to the end game.
In the mid to late game, the Barbarian becomes the best Character for farming gear due to Find item. This Skill increases his farming efficiency of Elite monsters by around 30%.
War Cry is your best bet when it comes to leveling your Barbarian without any previously acquired gear, unfortunately it doesn’t unlock until level 30. Until then, Double Swing and, no joke, Choking Gas Potions give you a reliable way of killing monsters.
The ultimate late game Elite sniper is using Berserk, which allows the Barbarian to basically one-shot his enemies with overwhelming Magic Damage. This Skill needs some build enabling items and is not recommended as a starter!
Every Character has the Attributes Strength, Dexterity, Vitality and Energy. At maximum Level, a Character has access to 505 Stat Points which can be allocated into the Attributes. While Vitality only affects the Life pool and Energy only affects the Mana pool of your Character, Strength and Dexterity have additional uses:
Strength: Generally, Stat Points are only allocated to this Attribute to wear your gear, however, Strength has an additional use: it increases the Physical Damage portion of melee attacks.
Dexterity: Generally, Stat Points are only allocated to this Attribute to wear your gear, however, Dexterity has 4 additional uses:
It increases the % Chance to Block up to 75 while using a Shield.
The Attack Rating of every attack is increased, improving the Chance to hit your target.
Every 4th Stat Point into Dexterity increases the base Defense of the Character by 1.
On ranged builds, Dexterity increased the Physical Damage potion of your attacks.
Starting Attributes of the Barbarian
per Stat Point
+4 per Vitality
+1 per Vitality
+1 per Energy
Breakpoints are an integral way to improve your Character's performance. For in-depth explanations on them, please check out our article on Breakpoints.
Due to his Skill set, Attack Speed is a Breakpoint the Barbarian cares about. Due to the complexity, Attack Speed would go beyond the scope of this post. Check out the d2planner to simulate your Breakpoints.
When using a Shield, the Barbarian has a % Chance to Block. When successfully blocking, he enters a block animation. Increasing your +% Faster Block Rate decreases the time your Barbarian needs to execute it.
Faster Block Rate
Your Cast Rate increases the rate at which you can use spells. Increasing your +% Faster Cast Rate decreases the time required for a cast. The Action Flag determines at which Frame the used Skill is actually triggered.
Faster Cast Rate
Hit Recovery Rate
When being hit, there is a chance that you get stunned. Increasing your +% Faster Hit Recovery decreases the time your Barbarian needs to recover from this stun.
Faster Hit Recovery
Hit Recovery Frames
Structure Every Character has 3 Skill Trees to allocate their Skill Points into. Each Skill Tree consists of a total of 10 Skills, and you can assign a maximum of 20 points per Skill. These Skills are placed into 6 rows, which represent the 6 Skill tiers. While tier 1 is available at Character Level (clvl) 1, the other tiers become available at clvl 6, 12, 18, 24, and 30.
Skill Points Every Character gains access to 110 Skill Points (98 from Level-Ups and 12 from quests).
Prerequisites Not every Skill is available right away. The arrows on the Skill Tree show the prerequisites needed to obtain skills further down the Tree. Example: You have to put a Skill Point into Howl and Shout to gain access to Battle Orders.
Synergies A lot of Skills have Synergies, which are Skills that passively boost the strength of another Skill. The main Skill shows how much a Synergy increases its power per Skill Point allocated into it. Example: The base Magic Damage of Berserk is increased by a summed up multiplier which increases by 10% for each Skill Point allocated into Howl, and Shout.
The Barbarian has a variety of builds to choose from:
Immortal King is the Elite Set, which was exclusively designed for the Barbarian. As one of the stronger Elite Sets, you are capable of clearing almost all content in melee combat. It is most frequently used for Whirlwind. Long term, this Set gets out scaled by setups that focus on a combination of Uniques and Runewords.
Character Specific Gear
Every Character has exclusive items that only it can use. For the Barbarian, these are Primal Helmets. They can spawn with 0-3 "Staff mods" with the range of +1-3 to individual Skills added by the Staff mods.
Set and Unique Items
Immortal King's Will
Lore & In-Game dialogue
In this section you will find the lore of the Barbarians as well as the in-game dialogue he uses while travelling through Sanctuary.
Legend says that when the world was very young the tribes of the Northern Steppes were given a sacred charge. Somewhere deep within the great mountain, Arreat, lies a source of great power, crucial to the well being of all humanity. The tribes were tasked to act as guardians of this artifact. They have shaped their way of life in observance of this power and fulfilling their sacred duty. Steeped in mystery and tradition, these people refer to themselves as the "Children of Bul-Kathos," the great and ancient king. To better protect their lands from outside forces, they adopted a nomadic lifestyle, frequently moving within the confines of the Steppes and maintaining few permanent settlements. Isolating themselves from the world outside their territories, they eschew the use of magics and complex machinery, as they believe these things can only weaken their resolve developed over so many years. The Children of Bul-Kathos have developed a kinship with the land and have learned to harness the primal energies within nature to enhance their own substantial physical prowess. It is because of this, together with their freedom from the trappings of the outside world, that the Western Kingdoms have historically referred to these tribes as "Barbarians," an epithet that belies the rich cultural and spiritual history these people truly possess. Although some trade with these curious bands of nomads, they do so only along the outermost borders of their lands. All intrusions into the territory surrounding Mount Arreat are forbidden, and warriors from the northern tribes are quick to thwart any incursions. Every foreign attempt at conquest has been met with fierce and decisive resistance. An account of one skirmish recounts how hordes of Barbarian tribesmen silently appeared where none had been but moments before. Their bodies painted in mysterious designs and their faces howling as they charged like the fierce mountain winds, the tribesmen descended on the invaders. Fully half of the trespassing army immediately dropped their weapons and fled, the remainder were set upon by the Northmen with fervor that none of the battle-hardened invaders had ever witnessed. No mercy was asked and none was given, but in the end, when the outlanders sounded a full retreat, no chase was given either… at least none that could be observed. Since news of Diablo's re-emergence has spread, a small number of Barbarian warriors have begun roving the lands outside the Steppes, prepared for war and seeking information regarding the recent activities of the Prime Evils.
Blood Moor (Entering) Den of Evil (Entering) Den of Evil (All monsters killed) Burial Grounds (Entering) Blood Raven (After Kill) Cairn Stones (Clicking one) Tree of Inifuss (Clicking it) Tristram (Entering) Deckard Cain (Saving in Tristram) Forgotten Tower (Entering) The Countess (After Kill) Monastery Gate (Entering) Horadric Malus (Picking up) Jail (Entering) Catacombs (Entering) Andariel (After Kill)
"Beware, foul demons and beasts." "There are many foes here..." "The Rogues are safe... for the moment." "I shall meet death head-on." "Good riddance, Blood Raven." "These magic stones are ancient!" "This tree is one of a kind!" "The land here is dead and lifeless." "Deckard Cain, you've got to get out of here!" "The stench of poison." "Haha... this is reward enough!" "This monastery reeks with evil and corruption." "I should take this to Charsi." "No one should ever be caged..." "So cold and damp under the earth..." "Let the gate be opened!"
Radament (After Kill) Claw Viper Temple (Entering) Tainted Sun Altar (Clicking it) Arcane Sanctuary (Entering) The Summoner (After Kill) Tyrael (After talking to him)
"I've just about had my fill of the walking dead." "The sun has never shone here." "It is good to know that the sun shines again." "One could get lost in here..." "Oh I hate staining my hands with the blood of foul Sorcerers!" "I've failed. Diablo has freed his accursed brother. The world remains at their mercy..."
Jade Figurine (After picking up) The Gidbinn (After picking up) Lam Esen's Tome (After picking up) High Council of Zakarum (After Kill) Mephisto (After Kill)
"Hmm... what a strange little statue." "This holy blade does not belong in the hands of the Zakarum." "May this book lift the shadow from Kurast." "The dark powers here will no longer poison the land." "Maybe now the world will have peace."
Izual (After Kill) Diablo (After Kill)
"Even fallen angels deserve freedom." "Eternal suffering would be too brief for you, Diablo!"
"The time has come to cleanse my homeland!" "The siege is broken." "Follow me." "Ugh, a coward's hiding place." "A fitting death for a traitor." "The guardians of Mount Arreat await." "The halls of the Ancients. Magnificent!" "The Prime Evils are no more."