Crusader Passives

Crusaders have a variety of strong passives that are suitable to every single build, some of them being among the best passives in the game. Virtually every single Crusader build will use one either Fervor or Heavenly Strength, depending on which type of weapon you need to wear (and allowing the Crusader to wield a two-handed weapon with a shield as the only class in the game). Other strong passives are Finery, which is simply a solid mix of offense and defense that fits into any build, and arguably the best cheat death in the game: Indestructible. To learn more about details about all the passives, check below:

Blunt

Mechanics

20% additive damage boost to your Blessed Hammer.

Best use

Okay choice for Hammerdins

Nothing crazy, nothing bad. Works when you are using the Seeker of the Light set, but typically outclassed by other passives regardless.

Divine Fortress

Mechanics

1% Block Chance on your shield equals 1% Armor, stacking additively with other sources of % Armor (Paragons).

Best use

Decent choice if you need extra defense badly

Shields roll up to 20% Block Chance naturally, which can be increased by 11% from a primary affix, giving you up to 31% Armor.

Fanaticism

Mechanics

15% multiplicative Attack Speed bonus to your primary skills.

Best use

Important passive for primary-skill builds

Especially good for Thorns-based builds around Thorns of the Invoker, where it can be useful for extra stacks and single target damage.

Fervor

Mechanics

Straight up adds extra stats to your character as if wearing an item with 15% of both Attack Speed and Cooldown Reduction, but inactive with a two-handed weapon.

Best use

Must-have passive when wearing a one-handed weapon

Extremely strong through the Cooldown Reduction alone, since many Crusader builds rely on Akarath’s Champion, the added 15% Attack Speed is a nice bonus.

Finery

Mechanics

Multiplies your total Strength by (typically) 1.15 (with 10 gems), giving you a 15% damage bonus on top of extra damage reduction from the Armor, which usually translates into 10-12% Toughness increase.

Best use

Top-tier passive for any Crusader build

Unless you need a very specific combination of passives for your build to work (or absolutely have to use Indestructible on Hardcore), this should always be included as the #1 option if you have a leftover slot. Due to the extra stats gained from any additional gem, you want to make sure to have the maximum amount on every single item (1x weapon, 1x helm, 2x ring, 1x amulet, 3x chest, 2x pants). Offhand is typically not really worth it, but also not as terrible as on other classes without the passive. You can’t go wrong with this one, if you can fit it in.

Heavenly Strength

Mechanics

Allows you to wear a shield with your two-handed weapon. The damage malus is 20% additive, which means you won’t feel it very much in most cases. This also means that other sources of additive damage bonuses become slightly more valueable, for example from support players or your item rolls.

Best use

Must-have passive when wearing a two-handed weapon

Playing a Crusader without wearing a shield is not an option. This passive is bread and butter for the class, use it when you have a big weapon in your hand.

Hold Your Ground

Mechanics

Sets your character’s Dodge chance to 0%. Naturally, Crusaders don’t have any dodge, but it can be acquired through buffs like Gogok of Swiftness (which is one of the core Crusader gems), Mantra of Salvation Agility or War Cry Veteran’s Warning. Additionally, Dodge comes first in the defense layers of your character, and a dodged attack cannot be blocked as well, so you can increase your overall number of blocks greatly.

Best use

Use only if you really need to block stuff

Losing a good chunk of your defense from not being able to dodge is a huge hit that needs to be compensated in another big way. Typically this applies only to builds using Ivory Tower, Justice Lantern, Akharat’s Awakening or wearing the Thorns of the Invoker set.

Holy Cause

Mechanics

Provides 10% additive damage bonus. The healing scales with proc coefficient, meaning that the more targets you hit, the more you are healed, depending on which skill you use.

Best use

Very strong healing passive with small damage perk

For builds using the Holy element damage type, this passive is a huge boon. Especially in heavy AoE situations, this can passive alone can outscale any other source of recovery, potentially healing you for your entire life pool every second (such as in Heaven’s Fury pushing setups.

Proc coefficients of a few select skills:

Heaven’s Fury Fires of Heaven: 1 (x3 with Fate of the Fell)

Heaven’s Fury: 0.05 per tick (5 times/sec)

Blessed Ground: 0

Fist of the Heavens Divine Well: 0.1 on main attack, little bolts and zaps

Blessed Hammer Limitless: 0.1

Condemn Vacuum: 0.83

Indestructible

Mechanics

Instead of dying, you are protected for 5 seconds with extra damage done and life per kill. Keep in mind that you don’t heal automatically during the effect, so you might still die if you’re not careful. If Akarath’s Champion Prophet is active, that proc will be consumed to save you before the passive is.

Best use

Best cheat-death passive in the game

Very solid choice for any Crusader build, if you have enough slots for another passive. Due to it’s long duration and the damage buff, it can also be used offensively for heavy nuking on a Convention of Elements rotation once every minute. (However, keep in mind that Iron Skin Flash which normally allows you to move through enemies could get you trapped during the effect, as you are invulnerable to damage.)

Insurmountable

Mechanics

Each block restores a flat amount of Wrath.

Best use

Extremely niche resource passive

Can be useful for very lazy builds, but typically Crusader is not resource-starved at all.

Iron Maiden

Mechanics

Multiplies your Thorns by 1.5.

Best use

Must-have for any Thorns build

Simply the biggest DPS gain you can get for Thorns-focused builds. Should always be included.

Long Arm of the Law

Mechanics

Effectively doubles the active duration of your Laws.

Best use

Decent supporting option

The best combo of this passive is going along with Laws of Valor Unstoppable Force paired with Captain Crimson’s Trimmings, giving you a solid 50% damage reduction for a long amount of time. Typically, with high Cooldown Reduction values or Obsidian Ring of the Zodiac, you will be able to keep up any law permanently (or even at least close to when your character is still unoptimized).

A second solid option is Laws of Hope Wings of Angels for speedfarming setups, where extra damage might not be needed, for example in Torment Rifts or Bounties.

Lord Commander

Mechanics

The damage increase for Phalanx is 20% additive, the Cooldown Reduction for Steed Charge and Bombardment[/d3planner-skill] is multiplicative.

Best use

Situational movement passive

Mostly useful for builds that really need some extra mobility and can’t fit in better options such as Swiftmount or the Flail of the Charge + Shield of the Steed combo. Otherwise useful for Bombardment Barrels of Spikes builds to allow you to nuke on every single rotation of Convention of Elements.

Renewal

Mechanics

Heals you by a flat amount when you block.

Best use

Insanely strong when heavily optimized, otherwise very weak

To really get most of out this passive, you need to have very high Block Chance, very All Resistance and Armor (preferably with a lot of paragons), and eventually you will become immortal as you approach the breakpoint where most attacks don’t deal enough damage to you anymore to go through the healing. Without all of these factors combined on one character, this passive can be discarded.

Righteousness

Mechanics

Adds a flat bonus to your generated Wrath and Maximum Wrath.

Best use

Pretty useless passive

Crusader is typically not in trouble with resources, as most builds self-sustain pretty well.

Towering Shield

Mechanics

The damage bonus to the mentioned skills is 20% additive, the Cooldown Reduction multiplicative.

Best use

Useful for specialized builds

Can be useful for using Shield Bash builds using Roland’s Legacy (and perhaps Flail of the Ascended), LoN / LoD Blessed Shield or support Crusaders.

Vigilant

Mechanics

Multiplies damage taken by elemental attacks by 0.8, and adds a marginal amount of Life Regen.

Best use

Useful if you’re really struggling against elites

Not really a great passive, but if you want to go all in on defense, it’s an option worth considering. Typically you want to fill your passive slots with more useful things however.

Wrathful

Mechanics

Heals you when you spend Wrath, just like the stat you can roll on items.

Best use

Rather weak healing passive unless heavily optimized

Typically not used because there are better options for healing and defense, but if you find yourself with lots of Health Globe bonus rolls on your items, it could be a great addition.