Now that you have a Fresh Level 70 Crusader, you may be asking yourself “What do I do now?”. Look no further. Here we discuss step by step and build by build on your sure ascent to godhood. Let’s get to it! Complete the seasonal journey and get Haedrigs Gifts asap! (Not 70 yet? Check out D3 Crusader Leveling Guide)

Curious? We’re going LOD Fist of Heavens (temporarily)
while you RUSH to Valor 6 (you can use seasonal journey to get it).

In Season 28, the Crusader free set is: Aegis of Valor. This is actually super relevant, as we’re going that route anyway.

D3 Season 28 Rites of Sanctuary and YOU. How does it affect?

S28’s unique mechanic is the Altar of Rites. I made a separate Altar of Rites guide because it’s there’s a few choices and timings you want to know about. A basic rundown, though:

The Altar of Rites is unlocked from the get-go. For each node (“seal”) you want to unlock, you need to sacrifice a specific set of items to unlock a seal. These increase in difficulty for each step of the way, regardless of which path you choose. IE, Unlock 5 will cost the same no matter if you went down one path or the other.

In return, each specific node grants you a passive power corresponding to the seal you unlocked. It’s kind of like a passive skill tree from other games. These range from the wildly exciting “Pets can pick up and salvage white, blue, and yellow gear”, to basic stat increases like 15% dodge.

While it may seem unexciting at first, the bonuses all pile up to become wildly out of hand.

While this notably changes the leveling pattern quite a bit, we won’t be talking about it here. Instead, check out the leveling guides if you’re not 70 yet and somehow found yourself here.

For this guide we have a few couple overarching steps that dictate our plan.
– Gear up our LoD Fist of Heavens for the early game.
– Gather core items and Valor 6 (YOU CAN DO SEASONAL JOURNEY).
– Transition into a better Valor 6 Fist (optional Norvalds).
– Refine the build, then get speedfarmy enough to branch out to other builds you like.
– Complete Altar of Rites along the way.

Step 1) Initial Build & Getting Legacy of Dreams

Don’t get stressed out, yes, LoD builds might seem a little daunting but let me tell you that it’s a fun and exciting process. Ultimately you need two things right now: The actual LoD gem, and a basic build to get you going.

Generic Starter build (slightly related to our ‘final build’)

Crusader Fresh 70 2H NO SHIELD Build
Skills Rune
Smite Shatter
Fist of the Heavens Fissure
Condemn Any
Steed Charge Endurance
Laws of Valor Unstoppable Force
Falling Sword Rise Brothers
Righteousness Wrathful
Holy Cause (Any) Finery, Long Arm

The above build is meant to be in the middle of two things:

  • Easy to edit – that hopefully game-changing legendaries can fit in no matter what.
  • Related to our ‘final build’ – it’s a rough basic version of our “goal”, so it feels more natural as you transition towards it. Have a look down there for the final build preview to see what we’re going for.

Getting Legacy of Dreams ASAP

The first three gems will always be Bane of the Powerful, Legacy of Dreams, and one random one. So thankfully, there’s no RNG there.

Get 3 rift keys → Run 3 rifts → Wear three gemstones on your gear. That’s about as simple as it gets. DO NOT try to “tryhard” the nephs and GR’s. SPEED is the key here. Get your keys on Easy if you must!

Step 2) Easy power-ups. Huge gains for little effort.

You can go all of these things “simultaneously”, basically small tasks here and there that you should keep in mind right now that will greatly increase your power for little to no effort.

Sounds cliche but here’s the “three easy steps!”:
A) Obtain and L25 your three (LoD+2) Legendary Gems most useful to you.
B) Power up Legacy of Dreams with ANY Legendary Items in all slots.
C) Fix your gear with Basic Rerolls and normal gems, remove trash stats.

Make a Reaper’s Wraps: Speaking of no effort to big returns… Make this ASAP. Plans drop from any Torment Malthael.

Topaz on helmet: this is one of those resource hungry builds that can benefit from RCR early on. Remove it when you can manage to.

Of course, if you have a resource hungry build you can also:

  • Make a Reaper’s Wraps: Speaking of no effort to big returns. Make this ASAP. Plans drop from any Torment Malthael. This build might need is early on.
  • Socket Topaz on Helmet similarly helps out with your resources too, before you get your Yangs or something.

If you’re wondering: YES. You need ALL the wrath. So get wrappin’ and topazin’.

3x LGems to 25Power up LoDEZ Rerolls & Gems

What three Legendary gems? L25 them ASAP.

Your next goal should be getting at least L25 on your three most important gems. Just get repeat the cycle of Nephalem Rift for a Key -> Do a Greater Rift until you get them, and do the absolute minimum level you need to level them up. Get them and level them quickly – do not feel pressured to “maximize” your rift keys by inflating the difficulty.

Legacy of Dreams is mandatory, as mentioned in the basics segment! Level this up as much as you can.

From here you have some choices

Honestly, I recommend double defensive gems like Molten Wildebeests Gizzard, or Moratorium if you’re getting chunked. Defense is a huge problem for this build, at least early on.

Want more damage? Bane of the Powerful is a cheap investment for an amazing powerup. You can replace this later for a Trapped for DPS, or something like Moratorium if you want more early game defense.

Can’t ever go wrong with leveling up a Boon of the Hoarder for speedfarming.

Legendary Items in ALL SLOTS

LoD gets stronger with each legendary item you have equipped – so get to it! You should aim to get this done “passively” by natural item drops, but you can also craft items if you’re desperate.

Simply wear whatever junk you find eventually
replacing them with useful pieces as you get them!

Spending Blood Shards is “OK”, but only use Death’s Breath to fill up the slots if you’re absolutely desperate. You’ll get an item for each slot in no time (you can even craft them). Save your resources for finding SPECIFIC items that will greatly boost your power. We talk more about this in the next segment, refinement.

Ancients DOUBLE this bonus, and they’re a welcome boost to consider.

Defense Type & Gems

Barbs / Crusaders are STRENGTH classes (they get free Armor from STR). So, in the face of all this free armor, your prime defensive stats are ALL RESISTS > VIT.So try to reroll ALLRES on your gear if you need defense, and REMOVE AS MUCH ARMOR (it’s pretty useless as a rolled-in stat).

So your gemming strategy (body and legs) should be slotting your best Diamonds, as they give ALLRES.

Basic Rerolls

Since legendaries are a little expensive to reroll EARLY ON, try to make the most by REMOVING GARBAGE STATS, and getting anything “remotely usable”.

STR and VIT are your primary stats and are welcome everywhere, also, as mentioned above, ALL RESISTS are also very welcome.

You want self-healing. First of all Crusaders have a special “Life per Wrath Spent” stat which show up on Flails and Crusader Shields. It’s a pretty good source of healing, if you can manage to roll it without too much loss. Life per Hit is also godly in the really early game, so don’t worry if it shows up in your gear.

Fist of Heavens % is found in Boots and Helm.

The Element%, you want is either Holy or Lightning, found typically in Bracers and Amulet.

Remove useless stats

  • Life Regeneration – garbage for any build.
  • Attack Speed – it usually an endgame tune-up stat.
  • Excess Resource Cost Reduction – Is a crutch, and only niche builds need it.
  • Excess Cooldown Reduction – Only useful for an endgame “need”.
  • Unused skill / element% – literally USELESS.
  • Armor – Useless for us, take ALLRES instead.

Take better stats

  • STR VIT– can’t go wrong with these. Your core stats!
  • ALLRES Life% Great defensive stats.
  • Sockets are essentially MANDATORY.
  • Life per Hit – Great early game sustainability.
  • CRIT Stats (CHC / CHD) – More for endgame, but I’d take this over garbage stats.
  • Skill and Elemental% – that you use.


Do not forget to fully equip your follower for farming. You can start by crafting Sage or Cain’s NOW and worry about the rest later. This is a “sidequest” you should forever be aware of as it’s pretty impactful…

Step 3) Refining, Using Resources -> ‘Full Build’

Here, you can easily see what items you’ll need, and you can get an idea of what we’re trying to do here. You can adjust these builds to use Goldwrap + Boon of the Hoarder if you’re into that.

Again, reminding you, if you haven’t made a Reaper’s Wraps by now make one -this builds needs the Wrath. Same goes for reminding you to socket Topaz on Helm.

LoD FistValor 6 Fist Speed

Full Build Preview: LoD Fist of Heavens

Remember, almost all of the items are irrelevant except the belt and flail. Every other item is essentially fluff / support / utility.

S28 Fresh 70 Crusader: Early LoD Fist of Heavens Speedfarm
Head Leorics / Prides Fall Skill Rune
Shoulder Any / Skeleton King Punish (Open) Celerity
Chest Any / Cindercoat Fist of the Heavens
Divine Well / Fissure
Stone Gauntlets (need Ice Climbers)
Steed Charge Endurance
Legs Blackthorns Jousting Mail Provoke Hit Me
Boots Ice Climbers Laws of Valor
Unstoppable Force
Belt Khassett’s Cord of Righteousness Akarat’s Champion Prophet
Bracer Reaper’s Wraps Passives
Amulet Hellfire (many viable passives) Finery
Ring Zodiac Fervor
Ring Justice Lantern / Unity Insurmountable (Long Arm of the Law)
Weapon Darklight Hold Your Ground (Open)
Offhand Akarat’s Awakening
Kanai’s Cube Legendary Gems
Messerscmidt’s Reaver / Burst of Wrath Legacy of Dreams
Goldwrap / Archews / Pride’s Fall / Any Esoteric Alteration
Zodiac / Unity / Any Molten Wildebeests Gizzard / Hoarder

You can freely change any of the skills to Falling Sword for that option to jump, potentially saving you time in your travels.

Full Build Preview: Valor Fist of Heavens

You’ll eventually want to transition into this build, as it’s much more powerful, and allows the use of Norvalds set. As for the best rune to use in Fist, I feel Holy is better for speedfarming, and Fissure is better for tryharding.

S28 Fresh 70 Crusader: early game Valor 6 Fist speedfarm
Head Leoric’s Crown Skill Rune
Shoulder Valor set (Open) Punish Celerity
Chest Valor set Fist of the Heavens
Divine Well / Fissure
Arms Valor set Steed Charge Endurance
Legs Valor set (Open) Provoke Hit Me
Boots Valor set Laws of Valor
Unstoppable Force
Belt Guardian set Akarat’s Champion Prophet
Bracer Guardian set Passives
Amulet Hellfire (Squirts) Finery
Ring Unity Heavenly Strength
Obsidian Ring of the Zodiac
Long Arm of the Law
Weapon Norvalds (Darklight, open) Holy Cause
Offhand Norvalds (Awakening, open)
Kanai’s Cube Legendary Gems
Darklight (the only important weapon) Bane of the Powerful
Khassett’s Cord of Righteousness Esoteric Alteration
Ring of Royal Grandeur OPEN (Gizzard, Trapped etc)

RoRG allows us to use Guardian 3 + Valor 6 + a FILLER (Leoric, Aquila if you can manage it). It’s a toss up between Captain Crimson and Guardian, as both have their ups and downs. Guardian seems better for toughness.

You only NEED Darklight and Cord. For your weapons, if you don’t have Norvalds set yet the only other relevant weapons are utility ones like Swiftmount.

Again, feel free to use Falling Sword as another mobility skill, as many of these skills aren’t important.

Get CORE ITEMS asap. The heart of your build

Items are obviously very important for you build!
Here’s a couple of the best way on how to get your best ones.

The absolute core of your build are these: Darklight (1h Flail) – use Death’s Breath. Khassett’s Cord of Righteousness (Belt)- use Blood Shards. That’s mainly it, since I guess you’ve crafted a Reapers by now.

Seriously, these two are the only important items for this, and the valor build you’ll transition to that are even worth mentioning. A distant second is the Norvalds Set.

Spending Blood Shards and Death’s Breath

Blood ShardsDeaths BreathRings, amulets

Here’s advice on how to spend your blood shards with Kadala, roughly in order of importance:

Khassett’s Cord of Righteousness / Goldwrap – Belt: The cord is a godlike upgrade which massively alleviates our wrath problems. Goldwrap of course is great for the good ‘ol Hoarder speedfarming variants.

comically, that’s it. You only need 1 item to really turn the build on. lol.
EVERYTHING ELSE IS FILLER, and pretty much only used for the LoD version

From here you can find the Valor set pieces, and along the way find these filler items:

Nemesis Bracer – Bracer: Massive improvement in all forms of rifting.

St. Archews Gage – Gloves: Great elite defenses.

Leoric’s Crown – Helm: Just a generic power up, either Cooldown, RCR or Life…

Blackthornes Jousting Mail – Legs: Simply because it can roll Elemental%.

Akarat’s Awakening – Crusader Shields: Difficult to obtain and not that important, but it’s something… Norvalds set shield is also in this pile.

That’s pretty much it for the “important” ones. You can try your luck with rings…

Here’s advice on how to get your weapons from Deaths Breath rare item upgrades (Kanai’s Cube Recipe: 25x Deaths Breath convert a rare into random legendary of same type), roughly in order of importance:

1h Flail for Darklight – absolute core to your build. It’s a 20x boost!

2H Flail for Norvalds Flail (then Crusader shields for the other set piece) – try to get these when you’ve transitioned into valor.

You only NEED Darklight and Cord. For your weapons, if you don’t have Norvalds set yet the only other relevant weapons are utility ones like Swiftmount.

And for fillers… The only other weapon I would want is Messerschmidt’s Reaver from 2H Axe, when you’re trying to get 100% uptime on Akarat’s Champion. 2H Mace for Furnace is ok?

Nothing else is really WORTH spending DB’s for, and would rather spend to try and get jewelry you might not have yet.

Rings and Amulets are tough to get from either BS or DB’s (due to the large amount of possible outcomes), but if you’re done getting your core items from these currencies – and you haven’t got your core accessories, it’s a viable way to spend them. Typically you’ll just find these as you grind – then use currency if you’re desperate. Anyway, if I had to rank the importance of your rings and ammys…

Obsidian Ring of the Zodiac is for the time in your build wherein you’re trying for 100% Akarat’s Champion uptime.

Unity is a decent defensive option, but you need the follower immortality relic, and another Unity for the follower! It’s quite important for this build, so try to get it setup when you can.

Justice Lantern can be cute (and surprisingly effective). Defense is rare for this build.

As an aside – Ring of Royal Grandeur and Avarice Band are BOUNTY ONLY rings (respectively ACT I and III), which DO NOT APPEAR FROM any other source. They, like any other bounty item, DO NOT DROP from monsters, gambling, upgrades or any other source outside of their respective BOUNTY CACHE.

Follower Gear odds and ends

More of a reminder than anything, once you start farming you will be running into those little bonuses for your follower farming build. Keep an eye out!

Summary & Outro

Welp, that’s about it. I’m liking these seasonal bonuses that remove the augmentation grind – makes the game a lot more humane. From here, you can easily do the Seasonal Journey if that’s your thing, or transition into literally any other build you like – the it’s exactly what the S28 fresh 70 LoD builds for each class are made for.

GL out there and check out our D3 Guide Directory if you need anything else!


  1. Fantastic guide, I’m a total newbie so really helped me understand all the mechanics and figure things out.

    One question though, what is recommended for powers to equip from the legendaries? I’m using the sweep build atm and about to start farming G32 rifts for gem lvling. Finding no difficulty but can be killed if I’m lazy or not paying attention.

    • Sorry I found it, didn’t see it under the menu. For anyone looking it’s under Roland Woe’s. So I guess I’m farming for items (Golden Flense and Denial) but should I equip them or just use their powers and equip a different weapon/shield?

  2. Why no Iron Skin in the “Season Journey Chapter 4: Getting 6 piece” build? Sweep Attack instead? How does that help with Thorns?

  3. I think I might be missing something here. This is my first season and I’m still figuring out how certain things adjust the offense/defense/recovery numbers. I’m just about set to go for Chapter IV completion and I was comparing my stats to where your stats are going in to completing the Level 20 GR and I’m pretty much lined up in each stat except my damage is only at 16000 and you say your damage is at 19000. I’m geared pretty much exactly how you suggest, however I already have the Belt of the Trove. Everything non-invoker has strength and Thorns and I just don’t understand 3000 damage difference.

    I’ve got a pretty solid yellow dagger and have slotted everything with a Diamond. Should I be willing to upgrade to a different weapon or slide some Rubies into some slots instead? At what point do I jump out of the suggested setup suggestions and focus on more damage?

    • Damage numbers don’t matter for the most part – IGNORE SHEET DAMAGE for the purposes of D3 (in 99.99% of builds) – it’s near meaningless. Especially for a thorns build, the “damage” stat is extremely useless as it does not take into account thorns in any way shape or form. You have ZERO chance of failure with Belt of the Trove.

  4. I love these fresh 70 guides!
    One technical difficulty – Have tried several reload / clear cache options, and I am still seeing the Season 12 version of this guide.
    Is anyone else experiencing this problem too?

  5. Amazing build for fresh 70, I couldn’t believe how potent it is with full set of yellow only, I was doing T1 GR, and it felt like a walk in the park, guardian died right away. I was lucky to pick up the Boyarsky’s Chip in that GR, and it’s even more potent now I am sure.

    Thank you so much for writing this guide, it truly is amazing.

  6. From 2.4.2 Patch Notes:

    Thorns of the Invoker

    (6) Set Bonus
    The 800% Thorns damage dealt to the first enemy hit can now benefit from +% Physical Damage

    This should make Doombringer a viable alternative to Pig Sticker.

    • we’re fixing our site right now to correct the bugs we got after changing our site’s theme… but apparently some pages were reverted to older guides. will fix this in a couple of days. really sorry about this. for now, you can see our build in Dfans/TeamBRG.

  7. Used this guide and leveled to 70 in a matter of hours.
    Hit 70 and found a Gyrfalcons Foote to cube, that along with aquila curiass i never spend wrath. Pretty boss right now


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