Hey guys, thanks for checking out our Crusader Leveling Guide! Crusaders have a bad reputation for slow leveling – but this isn’t the case! Crusaders have an extremely good leveling speed as long as you let go of the shield!

I HIGHLY SUGGEST YOU OPEN our D3 Leveling Process (all classes). It answers the usual leveling questions. “Leoric’s?” “Grinding?” There’s a ton of supplemental info there.

Crusader Leveling – Quick Navigation:
FULL Leveling BuildSummary, Reminders | Leoric’s Crown? | Notes | Fresh Level 70!

LET GO OF THE SHIELD!
Use a 2H Weapon WITHOUT Heavenly Strength!

Crusader Leveling: FULL BUILD per Level

Put your level in the box on the upper right – or hit back / next found in the bottom right!

Level LR1234
1SkillPunish-----
1Rune------
1Passive 1-Passive 2-Passive 3-
2SkillPunishShield Bash----
2Rune------
2Passive 1-Passive 2-Passive 3-
3SkillSlashShield Bash---
3Rune------
3Passive 1-Passive 2-Passive 3-
4SkillSlashShield BashShield Glare---
4Rune------
4Passive 1-Passive 2-Passive 3-
5SkillSlashSweep AttackShield Glare---
5Rune------
5Passive 1-Passive 2-Passive 3-
6SkillSlashSweep AttackShield Glare---
6Rune------
6Passive 1-Passive 2-Passive 3-
7SkillSlashSweep AttackShield Glare---
7Rune------
7Passive 1-Passive 2-Passive 3-
8SkillSlashSweep AttackIron Skin---
8Rune------
8Passive 1-Passive 2-Passive 3-
9SkillSlashSweep AttackShield GlareProvoke--
9RuneElectrify-----
9Passive 1-Passive 2-Passive 3-
10SkillSlashSweep AttackShield GlareProvoke--
10RuneElectrify-----
10Passive 1Flexible/AnyPassive 2-Passive 3-
11SkillSlashSweep AttackShield GlareProvoke--
11RuneElectrifyBlazing Sweep----
11Passive 1Flexible/AnyPassive 2-Passive 3-
12SkillSlashSweep AttackShield GlareProvoke--
12RuneElectrifyBlazing SweepDivine Verdict---
12Passive 1Flexible/AnyPassive 2-Passive 3-
13SkillSlashSweep AttackShield GlareSteed Charge--
13RuneElectrifyBlazing SweepDivine Verdict---
13Passive 1Flexible/AnyPassive 2-Passive 3-
14SkillSmiteSweep AttackShield GlareSteed ChargeLaws of Valor-
14RuneShatterBlazing SweepDivine Verdict---
14Passive 1Flexible/AnyPassive 2-Passive 3-
15SkillSmiteSweep AttackShield GlareSteed ChargeLaws of Valor-
15RuneShatterBlazing SweepDivine Verdict---
15Passive 1Flexible/AnyPassive 2-Passive 3-
16SkillSmiteSweep AttackShield GlareSteed ChargeLaws of Valor-
16RuneShatterBlazing SweepDivine Verdict---
16Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2-Passive 3-
17SkillSmiteSweep AttackShield GlareSteed ChargeLaws of Valor-
17RuneShatterBlazing SweepDivine Verdict---
17Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2-Passive 3-
18SkillSmiteSweep AttackShield GlareSteed ChargeLaws of Valor-
18RuneShatterBlazing SweepDivine Verdict---
18Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2-Passive 3-
19SkillSmiteSweep AttackShield GlareSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
19RuneShatterBlazing SweepDivine VerdictSpiked Barding--
19Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2-Passive 3-
20SkillSmiteSweep AttackShield GlareSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
20RuneShatterBlazing SweepDivine VerdictSpiked Barding--
20Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2FanaticismPassive 3-
21SkillSmiteSweep AttackCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
21RuneShatterBlazing Sweep-Spiked BardingInvincible-
21Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2FanaticismPassive 3-
22SkillSmiteSweep AttackCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
22RuneShatterBlazing Sweep-Spiked BardingInvincible-
22Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2FanaticismPassive 3-
23SkillSmiteSweep AttackCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
23RuneShatterBlazing Sweep-Spiked BardingInvincible-
23Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2FanaticismPassive 3-
24SkillSmiteSweep AttackCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
24RuneShatterBlazing Sweep-Spiked BardingInvincibleSuperheated
24Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2FanaticismPassive 3-
25SkillSmiteSweep AttackCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
25RuneShatterBlazing Sweep-NightmareInvincibleSuperheated
25Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2FanaticismPassive 3-
26SkillSmiteSweep AttackCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
26RuneShatterBlazing SweepVacuumNightmareInvincibleSuperheated
26Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2FanaticismPassive 3-
27SkillSmiteSweep AttackCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
27RuneShatterBlazing SweepVacuumNightmareInvincibleSuperheated
27Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3-
28SkillSmiteSweep AttackCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
28RuneShatterBlazing SweepVacuumNightmareInvincibleSuperheated
28Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3-
29SkillSmiteSweep AttackCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
29RuneShatterBlazing SweepVacuumNightmareInvincibleSuperheated
29Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3-
30SkillSmiteSweep AttackCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
30RuneShatterBlazing SweepVacuumNightmareInvincibleSuperheated
30Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
31SkillSmiteSweep AttackCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
31RuneShatterBlazing SweepVacuumNightmareInvincibleSuperheated
31Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
32SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
32RuneShatterDivine WellVacuumNightmareInvincibleSuperheated
32Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
33SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
33RuneShatterDivine WellUnleashedNightmareInvincibleSuperheated
33Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
34SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
34RuneShatterDivine WellAnyNightmareInvincibleSuperheated
34Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
35SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
35RuneShatterDivine WellAnyNightmareInvincibleSuperheated
35Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
36SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
36RuneShatterDivine WellAnyNightmareInvincibleSuperheated
36Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
37SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
37RuneShatter / SurgeDivine WellAnyNightmareInvincibleSuperheated
37Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
38SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
38RuneShatter / SurgeDivine WellAnyNightmareInvincibleRise Brothers
38Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
39SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
39RuneShatter / SurgeDivine WellAnyNightmareInvincibleRise Brothers
39Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
40SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
40RuneShatter / SurgeDivine WellAnyNightmareInvincibleRise Brothers
40Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
41SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
41RuneShatter / SurgeDivine WellAnyNightmareInvincibleRise Brothers
41Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
42SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
42RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareInvincibleRise Brothers
42Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
43SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
43RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareInvincibleRise Brothers
43Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
44SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
44RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareInvincibleRise Brothers
44Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
45SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
45RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
45Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
46SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
46RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
46Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
47SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
47RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
47Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
48SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
48RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
48Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
49SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
49RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
49Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
50SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
50RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
50Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
51SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
51RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
51Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
52SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
52RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
52Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
53SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
53RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
53Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
54SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
54RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
54Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
55SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
55RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
55Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
56SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
56RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
56Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
57SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
57RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
57Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
58SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
58RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
58Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
59SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
59RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
59Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
60SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
60RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
60Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
61SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
61RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
61Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
62SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
62RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
62Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
63SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
63RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
63Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
64SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
64RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
64Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
65SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
65RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
65Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
66SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
66RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
66Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
67SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
67RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
67Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
68SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
68RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
68Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
69SkillSmiteFist of HeavenCondemnSteed ChargeLaws of ValorFalling Sword
69RuneShatter / SurgeFissureAnyNightmareUnstoppble ForceRise Brothers
69Passive 1RighteousnessPassive 2Holy CausePassive 3Wrathful
70Done!See >>>F70 Crusader
Help! I can't use those skills because they're from the same category! - Turn On Elective Mode

Imagine the times I did that before I discovered shield-less! Support us!

Crusader Leveling Skills & Reminders Summary

Lvl SlotNotes
!!!!!!Set this in Hard mode
DO NOT FORGET to hire Templar when you can!
1(L) Punish (Auto)
2(R) Shield Bash (Auto)
3(1) Shield Glare (Auto)
5(L)Slash
5(R) Sweep Attack
6(L) Punish - Roar
8(L)Slash - Electrify
9(2) Provoke (Auto)
10(P1) Irrelevant / Any
11(R) Sweep Attack - Blazing Sweep
12(1) Shield Glare - Divine Verdict
13(2) Steed Charge
14(L) Smite - Shatter
14(3) Laws of Valor (Auto)
15!!!Gems now drop! Use RED for EVERY SLOT!
16!!!CRAFT a 2H Axe (Yellow) from town. It's no Shield-sader time!
16(P1)Righteousness
19(4) Falling Sword (Auto)
20(P2) Fanaticism
21(1) Condemn
26(1) Condemn - Vacuum
26(2) Steed Charge -Nightmare
26(4) Falling Sword - Superheated
27(P2) Holy Cause
30(P3) Wrathful
32(R) Fist of Heaven - Divine Well
32!!!Build is "FINAL" at this point
(L): Smite - Shatter
(R): Fist of Heaven - Divine Well
(1): Condemn - ANY
(2): Steed Charge - Nightmare
(3): Laws of Valor - Invincible
(4): Falling Sword - Superheated
(P1): Righteousness
(P2): Holy Cause
(P3): Wrathful
33(1) Condemn - Unleashed: Again, rune is preference.
37(L)Smite - Surge
40(4) Falling Sword - Rise Brothers
42(R) Fist of Heaven - Fissure
45(3) Laws of Valor - Unstoppable Force
61!!!IMPT: Craft a new L61 2H Axe for a HUGE BOOST.
70!!!Fresh 70 Crusader
Help! I can't use those skills because they're from the same category! - Turn On Elective Mode
Advertisement

Crusader Leveling & Leoric’s Crown – When, and is it worth it?

Review our D3 Leveling Process (all classes) for more notes on this. Summary:

It’s worth it || You must be minimum L16 (to be safe)
You must beat him in Campaign Mode || You must not have beaten him previously

This is still worth doing, but you have to wait until you’re L20 . Just make sure when you DO make this detour, you’re either A) Prepared to handle it as quickly as possible, or B) Just lookin’ for a change of pace from however it is you’re leveling it up.

Make it a mini-game! Get to Skeleton King as fast as you can! Steed Charge and Falling Sword while equipping a 1H and Fervor (Passive) should cut your travel time A LOT.

I dislike rushing to Leoric right at the season opener. It’s painfully slow without mobility and a fleshed out build. But alas, this is only my suggestions and observations…

Crusader Leveling Notes

Playing the Build

“Brainless AoE & Elite trashing”. While many builds rely on synergies and cute little interactions, this Crusader leveling build relies on raw BRUTE FORCE. It works, too.

Smite – Shatter  is an utterly brainless, imba AoE generator. It also heals you in tandem with Holy Cause. It does impressive damage while shield-less in a 2-Hander.

Fist of the Heavens is much the same. Once you get Fissure, the damage is just crazy. This and Smite take care of most generic encounters – but they kinda suck vs. elites…

Falling Sword, that’s where this comes in. The rest of the kit pretty much facilitates the BURSTING DOWN of elites. Condemn is much the same.

Steed Charge is essential in finding better fights for you (or hunting more elites to kill). While your single target damage isn’t exactly poor – it takes the same time to kill ONE guy and a CHUNK of guys (So you’d obviously want the chunk…). Don’t underestimate the DoT!

Laws of Valor-Unstoppable Force is great – and you should be popping it every chance you can get. More specifically, when you’re about to Fist (of the Heavens) them.

Followers – Hire them!

Templar is not only the best utility follower (Heals and Resource Gain), but Crusaders pick up strength gear which increase Templar’s DPS. “Take all the left skills!“, as their the best support choices. Periodically, give him your trash 1-handers, rings, amulet and shield.

Crafted Yellow Weapons

Craft 2H Axe (yellow) from the blacksmith in town. Every few levels, check if you have a new one to make. It should ideally have Strength on it, too. While any 2h weapon is OK, axe is recommended for its high weapon damage.

Level 61, don’t delay and make a new one. There’s a HUGE stat difference from previous ones. Needless to say, this should be the first thing you do once you hit 70 as well.

Crusader: Gems while Leveling up

Red Gems (Ruby)… good ‘ol red gems. Best for Helm (+EXP%!!!), Weapon (Flat Damage) and since Crusaders use Strength as their primary stat, any other socket too.

Don’t be shy to slot Red Gems EVERYWHERE! DON’T SAVE THEM, combine them often!

Fresh 70 Crusader, now what?

Grats on max level Crusader! The end-game starts now! So, now you’re going to want to setup your fresh level 70 Crusader – and there’s a guide for that linked just below. But before you get all excited go ahead and Craft a level 70 2H Mace!

>> Fresh Level 70 Crusader Guide <<<

Go to D3 Directory Guide for more on Crusader and other D3 resources.

Crusader Leveling – Quick Navigation:
FULL Leveling BuildSummary, Reminders | Leoric’s Crown? | Notes | Fresh Level 70!

Grats on max level Crusader! I hope our Crusader leveling guide helped you out! Check our D3 Guide Directory for anything else you need.

Like us on Facebook for more updates!

Please support our site through Patreon!

SHARE

10 COMMENTS

  1. The only problem I had with this build is that at 16 you say to pick up Righteousness and use a 2h axe, but that takes away the ability to wield a 2h and shield. The button 1 ability for 12-21 requires that you have a shield and you don’t get another button 1 ability until 21. Not to say you can’t replace that button with your own choice, but if you’re going for the all-inclusive leveling build you might want to add something in between 16-21 for button 1.

    • I just used this guide last night, worked great to get me to lvl 34 in a few hours. I didn’t even notice an issue with button 1 from 16-21.

    • Shield Glare is very irrelevant at 16+, it’s just a placeholder until you get Condemn. Once you hit 16 and craft a 2h axe and red gem it you will be instantly killing mobs with Smite-Shatter alone until 21 if you’re leveling on normal – expert (which you should be on fresh characters). You won’t even need Condemn for a while since you’ll still be killing elites really fast at 21 with just Smite-Shatter.

  2. Started this, but I’m slow so I’m just at around level 20. Once I went 2H axe, I swapped shield glare for Iron Skin just because, I mean having an ability you use is better than an ability you can’t use. So far it’s nice. I don’t play often though so I’m not like rushing through or anything.

  3. Hi! Nice guide for a beginner like me. I am enjoying playing that Crusader. That being said, it seems that now (maybe due to a recent patch?) the Steed Charge is on the same key that Condemn. So I chose to discard Steed Charge and keep Condemn and am left to choose another skill between Iron Skin, Consecration and Judgment. I am currently using Iron Skin but yould you have a recommendation (skill + rune) consistent with your build?

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here