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I'm thinking about trying a Barbarian for my next run, since there weren't any Barbarian companion NPCs and it's fun to try something new. But I'm not entirely sure on how to build him/her, so I was hoping someone with some experience could give some input.

 

First, I'm not sure if I should go with two-handed weapons or dual-wielding. From reading about the abilities the two-handed option seems best at first glance, with the "splash" damage and all, but the increased attack rate from dual-wielding would also generate some extra damage. Has anyone experimented with this?

 

Second, how important is the INT attribute? There didn't seem to be any AoE markers in-game when I tried building a hireling to test, so it was hard to tell just how much the radius was around each target.

 

And what about the Frenzy ability? +4 STR and CON seems OK, I guess, but I was more impressed with the increased attack rate. Is it worth taking? The concealed damage thing seemed a bit worrying to me.

 

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

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my current recommendation would be max int, might & DEX .

 

Adventurer weapon focus .. Use estoc 2h (there is an unique one that can apply -5 all defences on all enemies stricken (great for damage and AOE debuff)) - Save on cash and ingredients to enchant it to exceptional .. Keep 1 handed Gaun Share unique flail on weapon switch - will not match the damage output of the estocs but will drain 20+ endurance per swing if swarmed by enemies (off hand left free - a shield will lower the chance to hit too much , another flail will also lower chance to hit and also alternate attacks with Gaun Share - the other flail will not heal you .. ) ..


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1h vs 2h ... until or unless you have specialized, you can try both out... so skip that for now and play 3-4 levels of content trying both types to see what YOU think.   2h are nice late game or on extra hard difficulty to bypass the DR on the tougher enemy, while well-enchanted 1h weapons are more efficient at killing hordes of weak things faster.    Or wear a set of each and swap depending on the enemy.    If focused on attack speed, with a high dex and a low armor, you should use weapons that *drain* to offset the damage he takes.

 

Splash damage is better 2h.   It is fairly weak early in the game either way, by level 5 or 6 it might begin to show some teeth, so keep that in mind if you are trying both types in the early game. 

 

Int helps aoe -- it helps your "watcher" aoe abilities (the most useful being the healing one that you get first) and I am not 100% sure (its hard to tell because the radius is already small)  but I think it increases the splash damage radius, slightly.    However, it is perfectly playable to cut your into to 2 or 3 or whatever so long as you reduce the penalty to will some (take perception and resolve to beef up your defenses).  Splash damage did not impress me enough to invest in int, so my barb has very high might, con, and dex and a 2 intellect.  Unfortunately they did not include the "dumb guy" voice over and "me kill you now" chat options for the ... erm.. "challenged" player.  Mog still talk too good.

 

Frenzy is NOT a problem.   The barbarian gets a self heal ability that you can activate at the same time if you are concerned, and as I said, attack speed barbs should use drain weapons.   You can get 2 good drain fast attack weapons early on, the flail in the first town's dungeon (temple) and the dagger off the giant spider just past 'the old watcher'.   Frenzy good.  Might = damage, attack speed = damage, frenzy = damage!!   It does not last too long, though.   The barbarian, for real, has enough health that for the short duration of frenzy, if you are playing somewhat intelligently, you should not get a KO  from 'hidden health surprise" very often, if ever.   The toughest fights, maybe.   You can also apply various regens to him during the frenzy if you are concerned about it, lay on hands after say 10 seconds into frenzy or something similar if in a boss fight etc.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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In regards to weapons a) I would go two-handed on hard and potd and b) I greatly prefer the Soldier route rather than the Estoc. There's a massively nice Pike which prones on crit. Pikes are good as they allow your barbarian to remain safely behind the tanks while dishing out that Carnage (carnage AOE is centered from your target, not yourself) and there's a greatsword with drain in the same group! Two-for-one. Beats the 5 DR IMO.

 

INT is important, but I'm not sure you really need to max it to 19. I had mine at 15 and was satisfied.

 

Frenzy is massively good. Generally speaking in terms of talents and abilities, always go for damage > survivability. You are a glass-cannon, don't try not to be :)

 

I suggest using light or no armor. You'll kill things before they kill you anyway.

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u can go the best of both world and use a sabre. Only 1 base damage off two handed weapons. Can be wielded single handed for early game accuracy boost or dual wield for massive speed boosts.

 

there are some amazing sabres btw with critical damage mods which I think are one of the better mods in game provided u got someone to debuff enemy defenses.

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dual wielding sabres, simply gives the most damage output. period.

it does nearly as much damage as a two handed weapon, and it is onehanded.

so if you just go for max damage, and not any other fancy combos, that can be made with weapons, as peddroelm suggested, there is one best answer: sabres

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This is all very useful, thank you all.

 

Just for the record, I'll be playing on either Normal or Hard, with no Iron Man mode or anything. And I'm not terribly fond of min-maxing my characters, so I won't be dropping any stats very low (or necessarily maxing any all the way, either).

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sabres might be king - but in my   melee party rogue gets them .. rest of the guys must search for alternatives ..

well that is another good reason to take another weapon.

but i certainly don't see any reason why i need a barbarian AND a rogue...

one is enough damage... but then on the other hand, i didn't play through potd yet, sooo...

 

 

Just for the record, I'll be playing on either Normal or Hard, with no Iron Man mode or anything. And I'm not terribly fond of min-maxing my characters, so I won't be dropping any stats very low (or necessarily maxing any all the way, either).

you don't need to drop anything very low for barbarian.

just make sure to not have less than 15 intellect and get as much might and dex as possible.

the rest can be distributed as you wish, without any major set backs.

Edited by mahe4

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but i certainly don't see any reason why i need a barbarian AND a rogue... 

 

 

 

how about fighter, paladin, barbarian, monk, ranger and rogue all geared towards melee combat :) ..   (melee focused party) .. Because chopping enemies to bits using sharp,pointy or blunt "implements" is fun .

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how about fighter, paladin, barbarian, monk, ranger and rogue all geared towards melee combat :) ..   (melee focused party) .. Because chopping enemies to bits using sharp,pointy or blunt "implements" is fun .

 

Very similar to the PotD party I'm running right now, just replace the Barbarian with a Cipher who is ranged focused along with the Ranger. Keep a few scrolls of paralysis handy for the fights where you really need AoE CC, and you're golden.

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dual wielding sabres, simply gives the most damage output. period.

it does nearly as much damage as a two handed weapon, and it is onehanded.

so if you just go for max damage, and not any other fancy combos, that can be made with weapons, as peddroelm suggested, there is one best answer: sabres

 Is this true even vs enemies with High DR or do Estocs or Maces then get better damage output?


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Back when the attack sheet wasn't broken. I did some tests and the magical break point at 12 DR which is most non boss mobs was +90% dmg and 5 Dr reduction Via vulnerable Assuming alacritY to beat out estoc for dps.

 

The thing is... the difference isn't much and swinging faster for non wizards means two weapon is good too as they have a 20% swing faster talent which is much more handy and closes the gap the wizard has with 2 handers.

 

Of course at 20 dr... sabres fell behind by like 5 dps or something. Basically the boss mobs they don't keep up cuz estoc is just that good by the raw numbers.

Edited by MoxyWoo

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dual wielding sabres, simply gives the most damage output. period.

it does nearly as much damage as a two handed weapon, and it is onehanded.

so if you just go for max damage, and not any other fancy combos, that can be made with weapons, as peddroelm suggested, there is one best answer: sabres

 Is this true even vs enemies with High DR or do Estocs or Maces then get better damage output?

 

yes it is true for every enemy besides the extremely high DR enemies like bosses.

and when you face them, you should debuff them regardless of your weapon choice.

and the moment you debuff them with some -DR debuffs, dual sabres get the lead again...

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u can go the best of both world and use a sabre. Only 1 base damage off two handed weapons. Can be wielded single handed for early game accuracy boost or dual wield for massive speed boosts.

 

there are some amazing sabres btw with critical damage mods which I think are one of the better mods in game provided u got someone to debuff enemy defenses.

 

Sabers are great, but if you have Eder in your party, his weapon focus is Ruffian, which includes Sabers.  And if you have your Barbarian PC hoarding the sabers, you might be hurting Eder by denying him his best weapon type. 

 

I like trying to spread around the best weapons and not have multiple characters with the same weapon focuses for this reason.  Also, while sabers are excellent, it's really worth paying attention to the slashing, piercing, and crushing DR's of your melee enemies so that you can switch to the weapons that target their weakest DR of the three.  The best example are kith enemies wearing plate armor, which has strong DR vs slash and pierce, but weak against crush.  If I see plate wearing enemies, I switch to crush weapons.  It's best to have weapon options for your melee warriors so that they aren't attacking an enemy's strongest DR.  And to take this to an extreme, while you can't switch weapons in and out of the weapon slots while in battle, if you're using a well-stealthed scout, you can make some weapon switches prior to battle, assuming that you have some other weapons in your character's personal stash or the party stash.

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Sabers are great, but if you have Eder in your party, his weapon focus is Ruffian, which includes Sabers.  And if you have your Barbarian PC hoarding the sabers, you might be hurting Eder by denying him his best weapon type. 

 

 

 

I like trying to spread around the best weapons and not have multiple characters with the same weapon focuses for this reason.  Also, while sabers are excellent, it's really worth paying attention to the slashing, piercing, and crushing DR's of your melee enemies so that you can switch to the weapons that target their weakest DR of the three.  The best example are kith enemies wearing plate armor, which has strong DR vs slash and pierce, but weak against crush.  If I see plate wearing enemies, I switch to crush weapons.  It's best to have weapon options for your melee warriors so that they aren't attacking an enemy's strongest DR.  And to take this to an extreme, while you can't switch weapons in and out of the weapon slots while in battle, if you're using a well-stealthed scout, you can make some weapon switches prior to battle, assuming that you have some other weapons in your character's personal stash or the party stash.

 

Yeah, "best weapon" discussions really need to happen in the context of itemization to have any meaning. That said, weapon focus ruffian covers stilettos and clubs in addition to sabers, so you still have some excellent weapon options for Eder even if another character is hogging the only good sabers.

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Sabers are great, but if you have Eder in your party, his weapon focus is Ruffian, which includes Sabers.  And if you have your Barbarian PC hoarding the sabers, you might be hurting Eder by denying him his best weapon type. 

 

 

 

I like trying to spread around the best weapons and not have multiple characters with the same weapon focuses for this reason.  Also, while sabers are excellent, it's really worth paying attention to the slashing, piercing, and crushing DR's of your melee enemies so that you can switch to the weapons that target their weakest DR of the three.  The best example are kith enemies wearing plate armor, which has strong DR vs slash and pierce, but weak against crush.  If I see plate wearing enemies, I switch to crush weapons.  It's best to have weapon options for your melee warriors so that they aren't attacking an enemy's strongest DR.  And to take this to an extreme, while you can't switch weapons in and out of the weapon slots while in battle, if you're using a well-stealthed scout, you can make some weapon switches prior to battle, assuming that you have some other weapons in your character's personal stash or the party stash.

 

Yeah, "best weapon" discussions really need to happen in the context of itemization to have any meaning. That said, weapon focus ruffian covers stilettos and clubs in addition to sabers, so you still have some excellent weapon options for Eder even if another character is hogging the only good sabers.

 

 

 

True, but the thing is that I believe in having lots of options.  And in Eder's case, I have him armed with a saber and shield in one weapon slot, and a club and shield in another weapon slot.

 

 

 

As an aside.... I wish that the PoE devs had gotten rid of what I see as a flaw from the old IE games.  Just because you choose to switch 1H weapons shouldn't mean that you need a second shield for the second 1H weapon.

 

 

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