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Fresh 70 Demon Hunter : Free Set Available

In S5, the Demon Hunter free set is The Shadow’s Mantle. Your goal now is to RUSH ASAP to get to the 6 piece bonus. Along the way, you’ll be making small changes to the build

Fresh 70 Demon Hunter: No free set! | Free set available!
Build | Play-styleSetting up | Gaining Power! | Bridging to the End-game

Basic Fresh 70
2 Set
4 Set GR20

Fresh 70 Demon Hunter Free Set Build

6pc Fresh Shadows Mantle
Skill Rune
Grenade Tinkerer
Impale Ricochet
Preparation Punishment
Fan of Knives Pinpoint Precision
Vault Tumble
Shadow Power ANY (all in effect)
Cull the Weak Thrill of the Hunt
Perfectionist Blood Vengeance

The Shadows Mantle Guide is where discussion for this build is more detailed. I will be adding some short notes specifically for Demon Hunters who just got the free set.

warning: THIS BUILD IS EXTREMELY FLEXIBLE… that’s both a good and bad thing. You need to be able to cover for weak-points as you progress.

Playing The Build

Impale becomes ridiculously strong in this build, allowing you to one shot enemies in torments you don’t have business stepping foot in. The cons? AoE damage and survivability. The build is very erratic and you need to adapt your build quickly.

Completely opposite to most DH builds, we love killing elites and hate trash piles! So it’s not a bad idea when speedfarming or GRing to keep that in mind. Traveling while FoK is down is surely a good choice.

Fan of Knives is your go-to reset button against swarms. Use it often!

Shadow Power gives us speed, healing and toughness. DON’T FORGET TO ON IT!!

This build is difficult to write for… it’s both restricting and “open”, but adjusting to your needs at any given point of your character is a key point in this build more than any other DH build.

Offense & ResourceDefense & HealingSpeed & Mobility
 More offense or Hatred needed?

Offense is usually categorized in Damage or, indirectly, Resource Gain.

Ambush (Passive) is great, but not so much early on… Why?

This build has ZERO problem with single target DPS. See 1000 enemies? Click Impale 1000 times. That’s a problem. So we need AoE damage & Resource Gain.

The skill setup above is the best we can do in this regard… there’s no PRACTICAL changes we can make to adjust our AoE game! It’s a fact of life we must accept.

So my suggestion here isn’t an easy skill change… farm Lord Greenstone’s Fan for Aoe Damage and Karlei’s Point for Resource Management. I wish there was an easier way, but there really isn’t.

 More defense needed?

Shadow Power (ALL RUNES ACTIVE) gives intense self-healing and damage reduction. Luckily, this is rolled into our build (this is just a reminder). Need more? Demon Hunters aren’t known for their defensive prowess – you may need to look into items or legendary gems for a huge jump in survivability. But for the sake of answering…

Perfectionist not exactly amazing, but a brainless toughness increase. It’s recommended above. You can use Awarenesswhich is the next best choice.

Vengeance-Dark Heart (or Visage of Gunes) is great but without Dawn, this may make for some extremely inconsistent game-play. (Too high a CD without it…)

 More mobility needed?

At this early phase in your character’s progression, mobility for SPEED is a luxury. But in the Shadows Mantle case, it’s a little more important given the builds weak-points.

Vault-Tumble is already part of the build. More than most DH builds, you’re gonna need it.

Tactical Advantage is awesome with Vault. It’s the most basic build adjustment for any DH which gives the maximum returns for speed.

Speed shouldn’t be a focus for a fresh 70 DH free set or not, and I cannot recommend anything else past this as it’s too big a loss.
(See: Speedfarming General, Demon Hunter Speedfarming)

Again, since you have a huge leg up on DH’s without the free set, just check the Shadows Mantle Guide for more info. But some quick notes…

Setting up!

DECENT YELLOWS ON NON-SET PIECES! You might not have the souls or DB’s to re-roll your set items (or you may have gotten bad ones!). It’s okay for now. What you can control? Having decent yellows! DEX+VIT on everything is a good start.

Lightning Element %: On bracer and/or Amulet is a great start. Huge gains here.

Other re-rolls: Basic stuff like CRIT CHANCE on Helm, Gloves, Rings, Amulet. Try to get a socket in those too. Don’t bother too much with Crit Damage just yet.

Fan of Knives%: on shoulder and chest will help you with AoE. Impale% on boots or helm isn’t really needed until very high up…

FIX YOUR YELLOWS! I cannot state how important this is. Just picking up and using whatever yellow you have with bad stats is… really bad. Taking a small amount of time to fix what you can goes a long way in terms of power. On the other hand, don’t be too anal about making the perfect yellow. It’s dirt cheap, man.

Followers: Templar’s healing & Hatred regen is welcome in this build. Make sure to hire him.

Gaining Power!

From here you want to do a mix of Bounties, Nephs and GR’s.

Unlocking Kanai’s Cube

Unlocking and using Kanai’s Cube gets us 3 extra legendary powers. This is a reminder, and should be the first place you look to increase power at little effort.

Getting your legendary gems

Have ’em? Good. Don’t? Get ’em! It’s the surest way to power up without relying on RNG. Since you have a free set, you can skip some of the filler gems and not really mind…

Early on? Taeguk > BotP > WoL (3rd early gem is optional)
Lategame? Taeguk > BotT > Defensive gem / any DPS gem.

Taeguk: +damage +defense? Sign me up. The added armor is huge for this build. This gem is probably the most important gem for this set. I wouldn’t leave home without it.

Bane of the Powerful: is a solid filler for any build – but even more so with this. Faster elite killing and indirectly increases AoE damage in between elite packs. Solid.

Wreath of Lightning: is damn legit for farming more quickly and “helping” with AoE damage. You may not want to up it past 25 – no one should be sad to own a 25+~ WoL anyways since it’s used for speed builds.

Bane of the Trapped: the good ‘ol BotT for late game DPS.

Gem of Efficacious Toxin: Another “speedfarmy” setup. Basically tags all enemies you hit with a bleed that will likely kill them, allowing you to ignore trash mobs and clear nephs faster. No more than 25 I guess, for now. Works extremely well with SM2 set bonus.

Molten Wildebeest’s Gizzard is a decent early game defense “cheat”. Esoteric Alteration & Moratorium are probably the best defensive gems this build uses, but they aren’t really needed early on.

Boon of the Hoarder is a great gem to invest in (See: Speedfarming for any class, Demon Hunter Speedfarming). Get it going once you get Goldwrap + Avarice Band.

Items to look for

Use your resources wisely! Some legendaries are more value than others for your fresh 70 Demon Hunter.

Blood ShardsDeath's BreathClassics
Using Blood Shards:

Since you already have 6-set, you can try getting the other random body pieces with shards.

Bracer: Wraps of Clarity is the staple of many DH builds. More damage reduction is happiness. Nemesis Bracer is a notable speedfarmy item you should look out for, too.

Belt: String of Ears is self explanatory. Goldwrap comes from this pile too.

Helm: Visage of Gunes, while you may or may not use Vengeance in the late game, this helm is a great item to own for any DH.

Aside from this, there’s nothing much you’d gain for with the 25 shard stuff. Holy Point Shot (Quiver) perhaps?


Using Death’s Breath – Rare to legendary:

Upgrade DAGGERS to obtain either Lord Greenstone’s Fan and Karlei’s Point. These two items ALONE will see you a couple more torments higher than you are now.

Aside from this, the next best thing is upgrading 1h Crossbows for Dawn in the cube.

The Classics: General items good for any character to own or cube.

Ring of Royal Grandeur: Makes your journey one piece shorter. Always good to have. These drop from ACT I bounties.

Obsidian Ring of the Zodiac: Infinite Resource with Preparation-Punishment, Vengeance-Seethe. A great “filler” ring that can allow you to “cheat” past proper gear rolls on CDR.

Reaper’s Wraps: Not so relevant on DH but can free up a passive slot (Blood Vengeance). Kill Malthael for the plans – and craft it! A legit early boost with no RNG reliance.

Accessory Sets: Focus Restraint or Endless Walk. Completing any of these 2-sets is a vast power jump.

Convention of Elements: Good ‘ol CoE. Wear it, Kanai it, as a filler or till the end of time…

Unity: Straight 50% damage reduction in the cube. Too bad you need two of ’em.

Goldwrap + Avarice Band + Boon of The Hoarder: I don’t care how many times I have to remind you about this combo. Be on the lookout. Avarice drops from ACT III bounties.

Bridging to the End-game

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. (It’s not a surprise many DH’s will convert to any other set from this one…)

Learn more about the DH sets! To help you decide what to aim for.

Fresh 70 Demon Hunter: No free set! | Free set available!
Build | PlaystyleSetting up | Gaining Power! | Bridging to the End-game

So, your fresh 70 Demon Hunter is as good as it’s going to get right now! Good luck! Remember, “speed-farming before GR progression”! For more D3 (and other games) updates, like us on Facebook!


  1. Meticulous Bolts is no longer in game, it has been replaced by Augustine’s Panacea. Other than that great site and great guides, I am feeling a sudden urge to remake sevral of my toons when ever I see the guides here.

  2. Hi, I’m getting piece 3 and 4 from “The Shadow Mantle” set. I’m using 1H sword in weapon slot 1 and slot 2 (off-hand), I can’t use anything (because all 1H). Since we need Karlei’s Point and Dawn later on. We should able to use dagger or sword/crossbow (both 1H) together. Why I can’t do it now. Did I overlook something ?

  3. Holy wow. I stalled at Expert level because I didn’t understand the 2 set bonus. I went from weakling to god in a few steps by reading this. I owe you one.

  4. I was lucky to find “Thunderfury…” leg sword early in season, so when I extracted its Kanai power, it became a nice step to making Impale more anti-group oriented than before 🙂 that lightning damage


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