Frenzy Barbarian is one of the main and best known builds for the Barbarian class in Diablo II. These warriors utilize two weapons at once and swing them with much power. Specializing in Frenzy means dual-wielding weapons, attacking and moving really quickly, and doing heavy damage to every enemy within arm's reach.
Advantages and DisadvantagesEdit
- Works like the Paladin's Zeal in how it attacks multiple enemies.
- Potentially a lot of damage dealt.
- Movement, damage and attack speed increase with every swing.
- Single target combat is a lot better compared to a Whirlwind Barb.
- Duelling isn't very easy.
- Can not hit as many nearby enemies as, say, the Whirlwind Barb, so you risk getting hit more or surrounded.
- Such a fast movement speed is hard to control.
- No natural counter for Physical Immunes. A point in Berserk however will counter this problem quite effectively.
Stat Point AllocationEdit
Strength: Enough to equip desired gear.
Dexterity: Enough to equip desired weapons.
Vitality: Everything else here.
Energy: This should be left at its base value.
Skill Point AllocationEdit
- Frenzy (20)
- Weapon Mastery (20)
- Battle Orders (20)
- Double Swing (20)
- Taunt (20)
- Berserk (1)
- Howl (1)
- Shout (1)
- Battle Command (1)
- Natural Resistance (1)
- Iron Skin (1)
- Bash (1)
- Double Throw (1)
- Stun (1)
- Concentrate (1)
- Frenzy: Main attack skill.
- Weapon Mastery: Boosts attack rating and damage with a specific class of weapon. Allows for a chance for critical strike. As you will be dual-wielding, you will have to choose between the three top masteries. If you want to take advantage of the Barbarian's ability to use two-handed swords in one hand, Sword Mastery is your skill of choice; otherwise, pick and choose whichever mastery works for you.
- Battle Orders: Boosts life, mana and stamina for you and your party.
- Double Swing: Gives synergy to Frenzy. At higher levels, Double Swing will replenish mana instead of consuming it. Great for use when you run out of mana.
- Taunt: Gives synergy to Frenzy. Also taunts monsters to enter into melee combat (except for Possessed and Oblivion Knights).
- Berserk: Although this is a synergy skill for Frenzy, many put one point if at all. Handy versus physical immune and damage return skills such as Thorns or Iron Maiden as damage is entirely magic. Although 20% magic damage might be useful, the build is quite a tight one skill-wise. One could gain use of this skill without having to invest any points in it by equipping a barbarian helm with at least +1 to Berserk.
- Shout: Increases defense for you and your party. At least one point should be invested.
- Battle Command: Raises the party's skill levels by one.
- Natural Resistance: Increases resistances. One point should suffice. Three points max.
- Iron Skin: Increases defense. One point is more than enough.
- Howl: Makes surrounding monsters run in fear away from the barbarian.
- Bash: One point needed as a prerequisite for Frenzy.
- Double Throw: One point needed as a prerequisite for Frenzy.
- Stun: One point needed as a prerequisite for Berserk.
- Concentrate: One point needed as a prerequisite for Berserk.
Optional Skills Edit
- Battle Cry: Weakens monsters. Worth investing a point for easier boss battles.
- Increased Stamina: Usually has one point allocated to gain access to Increased Speed.
- Increased Speed: Entirely optional, but whole-heartedly useful.
- Breath of the Dying: Highest enhanced damage in the game, most popularly used with an ethereal Berserker Axe.
- Beast: High attack speed, Fanaticism aura, crushing blow and open wounds modifiers.
- Doom: Skill boost, cold damage, Holy Freeze aura, deadly strike and open wounds modifiers.
- Last Wish: Life Tap proc, crushing blow, Might aura. Usually put in a Phase Blade (to save repair costs) or in a Berzerker Axe.
- Fury: Boost to Frenzy, open wounds and deadly strike.
- Stormlash: Crushing Blow, Static Field proc.
- Grief: Usually put in a Phase Blade (to save repair costs and for the already high base attack speed) or a Berzerker Axe.
- Eternity: Best choice for a barbarian specialized in using maces like Scourge.
- Lawbringer: Offers fairly consistent Decrepify, Sanctuary aura and is fairly easy and cheap to make into a Phase Blade. Suffers from low physical damage modifiers, which can be partially aleviated by wielding a high damage weapon in your other hand.
- Honor: A cheap rune word that makes for a decent melee weapon early on.
- Oath: Potentially high damage (up to a possible 340%) indestructability, IAS, and damage bonus to demons for four Runes that are not that difficult to find. Goop option if you find a four socket ethereal elite sword or axe.
For the Secondary Weapon, pick another one of the above. It is not recommended use two of the same weapon, as the properties, particularly the auras on many of these weapons, would be redundant.
- Fortitude: 300% Enhanced Damage
- Chains of Honor: +2 to all skills and varying damage bonuses.
- Enigma: +2 to all skills, Teleport and level-dependent magic find.
- Duress: An inexpensive armor with crushing blow, open wounds, cold damage and resistances.
- Arreat's Face: the helmet of choice due to its faster hit recovery, resistance and skill bonuses.
- Guillaume's Face: The boost to crushing blow and deadly strike makes this helmet an alternative to Arreat's Face.
- Steelrend: Enhanced damage and crushing blow
- Soul Drainer: Dual leech and reduces monster defense per hit.
- Dracul's Grasp: Life leech, open wounds, strength bonus and Life Tap.
- Laying of Hands: Massive enhanced damage versus demons and fire resist.
- Gore Rider: Crushing blow, open wounds and deadly strike modifiers. Goblin Toe's big brother.
- War Traveler: Boosts to stats and damage, as well as increased magic find make this a close second choice to Gore Rider.
- Marrowwalk: These boots have Life Tap charges. Useful if the character is missing Dracul's Grasp or Last Wish.
- Nosferatu's Coil: Increased attack speed, life leech and slows target.
- Verdungo's Hearty Cord: Life related bonuses. String of Ears' big brother
- String of Ears: Damage reduction, life steal and being somewhat easy to find makes this a credible choice.
- Thundergod's Vigor: Lightning absorb, vitality and strength bonus
- Death's Guard: An easy to find belt with the Cannot be Frozen attribute.
- Highlord's Wrath: Increased attack speed and Deadly Strike option
- Mara's Kaleidoscope: +2 skill bonus and boost to all resistances.
- Bul-Kathos' Wedding Band: +1 to all skills and life-related bonuses.
- Raven Frost: If the player has no other sources of the Cannot be Frozen attribute, this item will be a necessity.
- Fine Small Charms of Vitality: Yield +20 attack rating, +20 life and +3 to maximum damage.
- Hellfire Torch
- Sounding or Fanatic Grand Charms: For +1 Warcries or +1 Masteries.
Additional charms with +life will also do. Combat Charms, although attractive looking, add only 7% Attack Rating and 3% extra damage, so one could trade those to a build that would benefit more from them. Resistance charms can also be a consideration.
Tips and TricksEdit
- Watch for Physical Immunes.
- Stack your Crushing Blow, Critical Strike and Open Wound mods.
- Life steal will make Frenzy Barbs more resilient. Dracul's Grasp and Last Wish are popular for their Life Tap proc.
- If you can get more attack rating without sacrificing other more essential stats, never shy from doing so.
Player vs. PlayerEdit
Dueling is difficult as a Frenzy Barb because you have to get close to your enemy and physically attack them first, one swing at a time. The only way that is notably simple to duel as a frenzy barb is to frenzy on monsters in the wilderness ahead of time to build up damage and attack speed.