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Twisting Blades Rogue Leveling Guide

Last Updated: May 18th 2024

Season 4 - LootA-Tier

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The Twisting Blades Rogue is one of the fastest leveling builds in Diablo 4. It combines a melee playstyle with extremely high mobility to maximize the number of targets hit and fly through the zones. While it's not easy to play, it feels amazing once it all comes together.

Twisting Blades is a two-step Core Skill that deals moderate single target damage in melee range first before launching returning blades from your target that follow you, dealing high damage to everything in their path. The entire build revolves around the second part of the skill because it's stronger and can decimate entire packs in one go. This converts an otherwise simple melee build into an extremely active hit-and-run playstyle that requires quick thinking and repositioning. In addition, the Bladedancer's Aspect adds a unique characteristic to the skill by allowing the returning blades to spin around you for AoE damage.

To make all of it work together, we invest into Dash and Shadow Step to zip around the battlefield so that the returning blades destroy everything. Depending on the situation, we use Shadow Imbuement or Poison Imbuement to boost our damage against packs or single targets.

This guide teaches you all about how to reach the endgame in Diablo 4 with the Twisting Blades Rogue. Let's get started!

Twisting Blades Rogue Leveling Setup

This build guide takes you through the Campaign and Early Game up to Level 50. If you're looking for Endgame guides, check out our Rogue Guides section!

Pros
  • Super Fast
  • Hit-and-Run
  • Constant Teleports
  • Attack and Don't Look Back
Cons
  • Difficult to Play
  • Mediocre Defenses
  • High Effort Playstyle
  • Needs Constant Movement

Season 4 - Loot Reborn

In Season 4, the Season Theme revolves around helping out the Iron Wolves. Compared to past themes, this one does not offer any borrowed power as the entire game has been redesigned with new itemization and crafting options, increasing player power substantially across the board. Instead, you can gather reputation similar to the Vampire Bounty Board from Season 2 to unlock rewards that supercharge your leveling journey to 100 with extra items, crafting materials and eventually even a Resplendent Spark to craft an uber unique.

We recommend to follow the seasonal questline until you unlock the reputation system, check which rewards suit you most and then follow your regular leveling path. To learn more, check out our full Season 4 guide for more information.

Skills Showcase

Twisting Blades

Twisting Blades is our main ability. With this Core Skill you stick two knives into your enemy which return to you from the enemy's position after 1.5 seconds. The second part of the ability is the real damage in this build and everything else is built it around to maximize its potential. In addition, the Advanced Twisting Blades upgrade helps to lower our cooldowns, making this a very fast-paced and fluid build to play.

Skill Tree & Gameplay

Getting Started

To start off we have to put 2 points into Basic Skills to unlock the other sections. Puncture is our choice because we need as much Energy as possible and it can apply Vulnerable to help out with bigger targets.

Unlocking Twisting Blades

Twisting Blades is the heart of this build. After attacking an enemy in melee range, the blades return to your current position 1.5 seconds later, hitting all enemies in their path. Whenever you fight more than one target, positioning yourself so that you hit as many as possible with the returning blades is key. Right now you don't have the mobility tools you'll acquire soon, so it comes down to walking and Evade in those situations. Attack enemies 1-3 times, then start running so that pursuing monsters get hit from behind.

Adding Mobility

At this point you unlock two of the Rogue's signature skills: Dash and Shadow Step. The first has two charges and allows you to quickly engage, escape or reposition yourself. The second is another mobility tool that's best used to engage or quickly teleport to another target, allowing you to hit more enemies with Twisting Blades. It also allows teleportation across cliffs which is very helpful in outdoor zones.

← Scroll to Level →
Twisting Blades Rogue Skills

At level 15, we unlock the Rogue's Specialization class mechanic. Finish this Priority Quest as soon as possible to get Combo Points. Using Puncture up to 3 times boosts the damage of your next Core Skill and buffs you with more Movement Speed, allowing for much better Energy economy.

Introducing Imbuements

This is the part where the full build comes online. Imbuements are Skills that can buff your Core Skills with extra effects.

  • Shadow Imbuement is an AoE tool, best used when there are many enemies nearby. It also refills Energy via Consuming Shadows.
  • Poison Imbuement is great to melt single targets like elites and bosses.
  • Note that both Imbuements cannot be used simultaneously.

At this point you should have some Veiled Crystals from salvaging Rare items that allows you to imprint an item at the Occultist. Complete Jalal's Vigil to unlock Bladedancer's Aspect and put it on your Amulet (because it's 50% stronger and Amulets are replaced very infrequently).

The Final Passive & Journey to Level 50

Close Quarters Combat is our Key Passive of choice for the build. It can easily be activated by combining Puncture + Twisting Blades, providing a substantial damage and Attack Speed bonus. In addition, it allows us to focus on Damage to Crowd Controlled Enemies stat as an extra damage multiplier.

At this point, the core setup is complete. All of our remaining points go into boosting our damage, defenses, speed or already allocated skills. This makes transitioning into the endgame very smooth with this build.

Check out our Renown Guide to unlock all your additional rewards efficiently. 

Rogue Specializations

Combo Points - Use Basic Skills to boost your subsequent Core Skills.

Whenever you fight bigger enemies, use this effect to boost your Energy efficiency so you don't run out of resources. Against weaker foes, this may not be necessary. Combo Points are displayed above your XP bar near the bottom of the screen.

Combo Points

Unlocking Specializations

Once you reach level 15, you have to complete a short questline starting in Menestad, Fractured Peaks. A Priority Quest leads you there to help out Leyrana. After a few stops outside of town you have to enter the Forsaken Quarry Dungeon and finish the questline there, unlocking Combo Points. After that, the other two Specializations unlock automatically once you reach their minimum level (Inner Sight at 20, Preparation at 30) and can be freely assigned at any time.

Learn more details in our full Rogue Specialization Guide.

Gear Progression & Stat Priorities

As a Twisting Blades Rogue, always use your highest DPS Melee Weapon available for more damage. Your Ranged Weapon is simply a stat stick to fuel their power, so its DPS is secondary. The stats to look for on these are:

  • 1-H Weapons: Pref. Daggers, High DPS, Dexterity, Damage, Life
  • Ranged Weapons: Pref. Crossbow, Dexterity, Damage, Life

Armor

Armor pieces typically grant us Defense and Utility stats, except the Gloves which offer a tidal wave of Offense. Here are the important stats to look for:

  • Helm: Imbuement Ranks, Armor, Resistances, Life
  • Armor: Armor, Resistances, Life
  • Gloves: Twisting Blades Ranks, Attack Speed, Critical Strike Chance, Armor, Resistances
  • Pants: Armor, Resistances, Life
  • Boots: Movement Speed, Armor, Resistances

Jewelry

Jewelry provides powerful Offensive stats that help us on our leveling journey. Pay close attention to the rolls as higher leveled pieces aren't always better:

  • Amulet: Movement Speed, Attack Speed, Resistances
  • Rings: Attack Speed, Damage, Life, Resistances

If you have sockets on your items, fill them with the following:

  • Weapons: Skull
  • Armor: Ruby
  • Jewelry: Any Gem to boost your lowest Resistance

Read more about itemization in our Damage Explained, Defense Explained, and Stats Explained articles.

Legendary Aspects

The Codex of Power is a collection of Legendary Aspects you can imprint onto Rare or Legendary items at the Occultist. They unlock after completing specific Dungeons located around Sanctuary. For leveling there are a few powers that can significantly help us if we have the funds to imprint them:

Top Codex Legendary Aspects

AspectDungeon
1. Bladedancer's AspectJalal's Vigil - Scosglen
2. Arrow StormsHowling Warren - Scosglen
3. VengefulInferno - Kehjistan

Learn more details in our article covering the Codex of Power.

Helpful Legendary Powers

Here are more helpful Legendary Aspects for the Twisting Blades Rogue that can either be found in the Codex of Power or Extracted from an item drop. Note that all Legendary Aspects can be found from item drops, and that these can roll better and often significantly better than ones sourced from the Codex of Power.

  1. Rapid
  2. Disobedience
    • Gamble Pants.
    • Provides a ton of extra defense and stacks up easily because we hit many targets with our attacks.
    • Codex unlock: Halls of the Damned - Kehjistan
  3. Corruption
  4. Ghostwalker
    • Gamble Boots.
    • Provides extra speed and the ability to move through enemies, which is great for better targeting.
    • Codex unlock: Broken Bulwark - Scosglen
  5. Might
    • Gamble Pants.
    • Since we use Basic Skills frequently, this damage reduction effect is easy to trigger.
    • Codex unlock: Dark Ravine - Dry Steppes

How To Level

In Diablo 4 you level by completing the Campaign, collecting Grim Favors for the Tree of Whispers, completing Helltide activities, grinding Dungeons, or interacting with the Seasonal mechanics. While there are many ways to level up in Diablo 4, not all of them are made equal.

Campaign Leveling

  • For your first character in Diablo 4, completing the Campaign provides the best gameplay experience and gives you access to key unlocks like your Mount.
    • If you don't have your Mount, you MUST progress the Campaign until you complete the quest Donan's Favor at the start of Act 4.
    • After obtaining your Mount you can skip the remainder of the campaign at any time.
    • The Campaign is the slowest way to level, but it's worth experiencing the Campaign and Diablo 4's storyline at least once.
    • To play Seasonal Content you need to have completed or skipped the Campaign.

Seasonal / Alt Leveling

  • Complete the Seasonal questline, progress your Seasonal Journey to unlock Legendary Aspects and work on your Seasonal powers.
  • If your account is below Rank 5 Renown in each zone, focus on completing your Renown.
    • This only needs to be done once per realm (Softcore / Hardcore).
  • Complete the Dungeons needed for any Legendary Aspects from your Codex of Power.
  • From level 1-50 you should focus on getting experience in Helltides by combining Helltide activities with Grim Favors for the Tree of Whispers or complete Gathering Legion Events.
  • After level 50 you need to balance leveling up, Glyph Experience and participating in Endgame activities like Helltide, Tree of Whispers and Bosses. The fastest experience possible after reaching World Tier 3 is completing Nightmare dungeons with monsters exactly 10 levels above your current level. Check out our Nightmare Dungeon Tier List for the best Nightmare Dungeon layouts!
  • Around level 30-45 you should move to World Tier 3.
  • Around level 50-65 you should move to World Tier 4.
  • Alternatively: Get boosted by a friend to World Tier 4 then leech experience/loot and Glyph exp (post 50), in Nightmare dungeons.
  • Find the most efficient way of leveling your character in detail in our Speed Leveling Guide.

Leveling Tips and Tricks

Let's look at some tips and tricks to remember when leveling up!

  • Level Up Your Potion. You need to farm materials to upgrade your character's potion.
    • Make sure you collect all materials as you explore Sanctuary, especially Gallowvine which is used in many Elixir recipes!
  • Compare your Items... Literally. Press Shift over an item in your inventory to compare it to what you're wearing.
    • This makes it easy to determine what is and isn't an upgrade.
  • Don't Imprint Your Best Aspect Onto Your Weapon. The most critical piece of gear while leveling up is your weapon, which gets replaced constantly.
    • It is a better idea to put your best Offensive Aspect on your Amulet, which can be used for a long time.
  • Sacred is just better. Between level 30 and 50 you're able to beat the Capstone Dungeon and enter World Tier 3, you gain access to powerful Sacred items which have higher item power and better stats. Getting a Sacred weapon significantly improves your farming speed.
    • The same happens with World Tier 4 and Ancestral gear.

Video Guide

Coming soon.

Summary

  • The Twisting Blades Rogue is a super fast, fun to play leveling build.
  • Attack enemies, then use Evade, Dash and Shadow Step to hit more enemies with returning blades.
  • Use Shadow Imbuement and Poison Imbuement depending on the situation.
  • Focus on improving your Melee Weapons more than any other items.
  • Look out for helpful Legendary Powers in the Codex of Power, especially Bladedancer and those that generate Energy and buff your damage/damage reduction.
  • Read the Next Steps above to continue your journey.

Credits

Written by wudijo

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