Got your Crusader to Level 70? Now what? Your goal is to get your Armor of Akkhan. In this guide, you’ll learn exactly what to do for each step, ultimately leading to the end-game as your Fresh 70 Crusader.
In S10, the Crusader free set is Armor of Akkhan.
YOU MUST GATHER A THORNS-BASED YELLOW “SET” OF ITEMS.
Read more in the box below.
Click below to reveal the instructions you need for each step:
Akkhan’s is a very open set, but I will be directing you towards
the typical thorns speed-farming build (which absolutely
excels at bounties, and mid-torment content).
Since it’s already given to you as a free set, you might as well gear toward that.
|S10 Akkhan’s 6 Fresh 70 Crusader|
|Open (Smite)||Open (Reaping)|
|Steed Charge||Spiked Barding|
|Iron Skin||Reflective Skin|
|Consecration||Bed of Nails|
|Bombardment||Barrels of Spikes|
|Fervor (or Heavenly Strength)||Iron Maiden|
|Finery||Lord Commander (Preference)|
FROM HERE OUR GOAL IS TO GAIN POWER FAST. The next logical steps are Legendary Gems, and being mindful of the good items you need to find.
Item review before proceeding… Remember these things as you progress!
Now we have to gain as much power, as quickly as possible. Legendary Gems is the first place we look – and make sure to keep an eye out for key items.
This is the easiest way to gain power simply because acquiring them has little to no RNG. Getting 3 of your best gems will increase your power dramatically in a short time span.
Click on the tabs to see Akkhan’s “Big 3” gems, and “others”.
Get these three to L25 ASAP:
Boyarsky’s Chip: +Thorns. Nothing to explain here. Dump as many points in this as you can, but make sure to get the L25 bonuses of the next 2 gems first.
Bane of the Powerful: Synergizes well with our “Eradicate all Elites” mission. It MAXES OUT ON ITS POWER at L25, with only duration increasing so it’s super value as an early-mid game gem.
— The above two gems are the best for now, the third is a toss-up… —
— I would only recommend the below if you have enough CDR… —
Molten Wildebeest’s Gizzard: Vastly improves our dumpster tier recovery. It’s strictly an early game “patch job” and will not scale well into the high heavens. However, it’s not a wasted investment – as you can use it for augments!
These three gems will last until you get into some ridiculously high GR’s. In which case, check the next tab…
Any other gems worth it?
Esoteric Alteration: Basic endgame defensive gem. Nice to have.
Just get them asap while slowly climbing the GR’s you’re allowed to do. Do neph/GR/neph/GR etc until you get the big 3. Don’t overdo the level, just go for efficient farming and cheap empowering. GR 38 is enough to 25 a gem.
With 3 of your best gems at L25 – try much higher Torment levels. Now it’s time to find some key items!
Playing the Build & Adjustments
Now that you have the base “power level” of your 6 set and gems, let’s take a break to review How to play & adjust your build. These tips are basic, nothing comprehensive, but helpful nonetheless!
Adjusting your build is a key knowledge point – certain weak spots in your build may appear due to RNG drops, so it’s in your best interest to address these.
Here we discuss Playstyle Notes and build Build Adjustments.
Run of the mill Thorns build, made more powerful with Akarat’s Champion. All of your “attacks” have a cooldown (for now), so it’s annoying compared to the usual builds, if you’ve never ran thorns before.
Killing tiny, loose piles of whites is THE WORST for you!
Find elites and burst them down!
Mega piles of whites are a great Consecration target!
Steed Charge does good damage here! It’s the closest thing you have to a basic attack right now. It’s annoying when you have to use this as purely a mobility skill – then of course some dudes show up, lol.
Akarat’s Champion-Prophet is a powerful offensive and defensive steroid! I chose Prophet as the base build as the toughness it provides allows you to push into more difficult content compared to any other rune. Given how strong this skill is, you will need CDR to keep it up 100%.
Inconsistency is the problem with this build. Much more so than other fresh builds. I highly recommend you tunnel on hunting down certain legendaries to smooth out the game play. While you should be okay running around killing elites only, this can cause problems and loss of speed in Nephs or Bounties. (Lots of re-rolling at the mystic needed, too)
Getting the two items mentioned above: Hack and Belt of the Trove is your priority. While most end-game builds may only focus on one aspect of the build (Either Thorns on-hit or Bombardment), a hybrid isn’t so bad for general purpose early game farming.
As you progress, you may have certain aspects of your build hinder you from going upwards in difficulty – here are some adjustments you can make.
Offense is usually categorized in Damage or, indirectly, Resource Gain.
First of all, Wrath has no purpose in this build – let’s get that out of the way. Also, it’s quite difficult to increase your DPS by traditional build changes. GEAR is the main source of DPS for thorns, and legendary affixes…
Finery – is the first thing you want to activate and maximize. That’s going to be the most relevant change you can do in the build to bolster damage. It’s recommended in the base build and should never be removed.
Lord Commander makes a strong case. While this is our loosest passive, the upsides are damn obvious. This of course falls off a little once we have godlike CDR.
Thorns being thorns, there aren’t much built-in adjustments we can make to improve our damage output. What do!
Defense is usually self-healing and/or damage reduction.
While there are many possible defensive modifications we can make, there aren’t many slots to actually fit them in. If you wanna replace one of the passives for a defensive one, Hold Your Ground and Vigilant aren’t bad.
Mobility and Speed are a luxury as a fresh 70 character, but here it is anyway:
Steed Charge-Spiked Barding is your Mobility (and damaging!) skill. Sadly, there’s not much else this build can change to improve your movement.
Lord Commander is an amazing filler passive to help bounties along faster. It’s worth noting that this might even be a good addition to the base build…
Mobility isn’t the strong point of a Crusader, and any changes to facilitate that right now is a bit greedy. Your mobility is locked behind items, so not much we can do. Ultra-speedy setups shouldn’t be your focus as a fresh 70 Crusader.
Items to look for
Okay, now that the easy part of powering up is done, it’s time for the farmy bit. Here, I will be listing all the high-impact items you can pick up, and how to get them (aside from drops).
LEGENDARY ITEMS LIST
Helm: Leoric’s Crown. If you didn’t get your FREE 100% DROP LEORIC’S CROWN from campaign, get it now! It’s a well known cheese. Simply beat him in campaign at L20 (or is it 15 now?). You can also spend shards for it if you don’t feel like wasting time. THIS DOUBLES THE EFFECTIVITY OF YOUR DIAMOND ON HELM, giving you a massive CDR boost.
Belt: Is the first place I’d dump shards. Belt of the Trove helps us with our AoE clear PASSIVELY (which is relevant in the early game). Goldwrap and other semi-useful fillers are found here, too. FREE BOMBARDMENTS, dude. FREE.
2pc Invoker (Bracers + any set item) is a pretty good “evolution” to the build. Since you’ll be getting random odds and ends, keep in mind that you can fit in 2pc Invoker easily since Akkhan is a 7 set, and Invoker uses a Bracer!
Chest: is next Aquila Cuirass is a free, brainless 50% damage reduction. While Heart of Iron is also in this pile, it’s only considered a filler – the actual thorns damage you get from it is small. – those 2 are cubeable
Shield: isn’t a bad place to invest. There are a literal TON of shields that can help you get “to the next step of power” whether they be endgame viable or not. Shield of the Steed and Akarat’s Awakening are the jackpots here.
Upgrading Axe for Hack can give your gameplay a more normal feel. It turns your chosen basic attack into a nuke.
1H Flail – Swiftmount is a godlike filler for bounties. Never sad to have this.
Ring of Royal Grandeur: “Break” your 6-piece to make space for a good filler item! from Act I
Unity: Straight 50% damage reduction in the cube. Too bad you need two of ’em.
So you skipped a whole chunk of the powering up phase with the free set. Now what? Like I always say, “Speedfarming first before pushing GR’s”. So, convert what you have NOW to be as speedfarmy as possible, first.
- Crusader Speedfarming Builds & Primer
- D3 Speedfarming with any Class!
- Crusader Best Speedfarming Build
Other Crusader Guides:
- Thorns of the Invoker | Invoker Set Dungeon
- Armor of Akkhan | Akkhan Set Dungeon
- Roland’s Legacy | Roland’s Set Dungeon
- Seeker of the Light | Light Set Dungeon
- Crusader Support Builds
Check out our D3 Guide Directory for other resources.
Well, Armor of Akkhan is a tough set to transmit to the end-game, but It can “pretend” to be LoN bombardment for quite a while! It’s great as this seasons free set since it’s very easy to speedfarm with it shortly after being a fresh 70 Crusader!
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