Warning It appears that you may be blocking the ads, and we are fine with it (read more here). That said, it would really be awesome if you decided to whitelist our website or make a donation :) You can also send us Bitcoins (1DEkropiHPWBmfJxogFaXQscfzhmdpTti4)!

Crusader Holy Hammerdin Build with Blessed Hammer and Seeker of the Light (Patch 2.4.2 / Season 8)

Last updated on Oct 21, 2016 at 09:00 by Deadset 70 comments

Table of Contents

The Seeker of the Light set marks the return of the Hammerdin build, decidedly focusing on bringing Blessed Hammer Blessed Hammer to competitive DPS in Greater Rifts — aided and protected by Falling Sword Falling Sword. This mobile, sustain damage playstyle is available in both solo progression and speedfarming variations, explained in that order.

The build requires the following set pieces:

1. About the Author

This build is presented to you by Deadset, one of the very few professional Diablo 3 players. Deadset regularly publishes video guides on Youtube, where you can see how this and other builds play out in practice.

2. Builds

Solo Progression Speedruns
Active Skills
Left Mouse Button Blessed Hammer Icon Blessed Hammer Limitless Limitless Right Mouse Button Falling Sword Icon Falling Sword Rapid Descent Rapid Descent 1 Judgment Icon Judgment Resolved Resolved 2 Iron Skin Icon Iron Skin Flash Flash 3 Provoke Icon Provoke Too Scared to Run Too Scared to Run 4 Akarat's Champion Icon Akarat's Champion Prophet Prophet
Passive Skills
(battle.net link)
Active Skills
Left Mouse Button Blessed Hammer Icon Blessed Hammer Limitless Limitless Right Mouse Button Falling Sword Icon Falling Sword Rapid Descent Rapid Descent 1 Judgment Icon Judgment Resolved Resolved 2 Laws of Hope Icon Laws of Hope Wings of Angels Wings of Angels 3 Provoke Icon Provoke Too Scared to Run Too Scared to Run 4 Akarat's Champion Icon Akarat's Champion Prophet Prophet
Passive Skills
(battle.net link)

3. Rotation

The playstyle balances between aggressive mobility (drawing stragglers into a pack, finding good density and jumping in the thick of it) and static fighting (immobilizing enemies and spamming Blessed Hammer Blessed Hammer). Provoke Provoke will alternate Wrath management duties with Gabriel's Vambraces Gabriel's Vambraces, in multi and single target situations respectively. The cheap price of Blessed Hammer Blessed Hammer and the solid resource management already present in the build allows you to take an offense utility skill like Judgment Judgment Resolved Resolved, adding to your damage through the cubed Hammer Jammers Hammer Jammers. While the Crusader is naturally durable, protection will be necessary: Iron Skin Iron Skin for incoming damage spikes and Akarat's Champion Akarat's Champion as an overall damage and toughness buff. The final exotic ingredient in the build is Falling Sword Falling Sword — a mobility tool with moderate damage capabilities, it takes on a defensive role with the Seeker of the Light 4-piece bonus. As incoming damage will be significantly cut down after using Falling Sword, make good use of the cooldown resets inherent with the set and cast it when available.

4. Skills, Runes and Passives

Blessed Hammer Blessed Hammer is the primary spender of the build; empowered to a competitive DPS level through the Seeker of the Light set and its dedicated shield, Guard of Johanna Guard of Johanna, Blessed Hammer Blessed Hammer receives double the benefits through the holy rune Limitless Limitless. Blessed Hammer Blessed Hammer is also the cheapest spender in the Crusader arsenal, made even easier to manage with its companion bracers — Gabriel's Vambraces Gabriel's Vambraces. With these factors in mind, you will be able to maintain your Wrath reserves despite the high attack speed of this one-hander build.

The other half of your resource management resides in your active skills; Provoke Provoke is the Swiss knife at your disposal, the solitary Crusader cooldown with inherent Wrath generation. It is also able to consistently keep enemies in range with its taunt function and the frequent resets coming from the Seeker of the Light set. To top things off, it offers a potent, percentage based debuff from the Too Scared to Run Too Scared to Run rune, reducing the rate of incoming attacks and offering an easy proc for Bane of the Trapped Bane of the Trapped.

A minor source of Wrath restoration is added on top through the Crusader staple Akarat's Champion Akarat's Champion, offering the modest 5 Wrath per second. That, however, is not its primary function: it is taken as a sizable 35% multiplicative damage buff and as a protective juggernaut through the Prophet Prophet rune. Supplying you with 150% additional armor and an invaluable cheat death, Akarat's Champion Akarat's Champion will alternate with Indestructible Indestructible to keep you safe and alive.

To double up the sources of crowd control (which will benefit you through the Hammer Jammers Hammer Jammers cubed effect), you can take Judgment Judgment with the crit-boosting Resolved Resolved rune on your bar. This will allow you to alternate between two cooldowns to maintain the damage bonuses on immobilized targets, and will add its crit value to the Sacred Harness Sacred Harness Judgment Judgment cast. When partying up, you can consider running Laws of Valor Laws of Valor Critical Critical to the benefit of your entire group.

To supplement the dependable tankiness coming from Akarat's Champion Akarat's Champion when pushing Greater Rifts, Iron Skin Iron Skin is added as a spike of defense, cutting incoming damage in half for 4 seconds. Striving to remain in the midrange, the build balances the taunt of Provoke Provoke with the movement utility of the Flash Flash rune, allowing you collision-free passage through enemies. In contrast with using Akarat's Champion Akarat's Champion on cooldown, try to time your Iron Skin Iron Skin activations when surrounded by enemies or when expecting hard-hitting elite affixes. It should be noted that the additional protection of Iron Skin Iron Skin can be overkill in speedruns, and the skill is best replaced by the group-wide mobility buff Laws of Hope Laws of Hope Wings of Angels Wings of Angels.

Patch 2.4 reinforces the place of Falling Sword Falling Sword into the build over other mobility or utility options; besides the set-induced damage reduction, Falling Sword Falling Sword also becomes a reliable source of immobilization damage bonuses from Hammer Jammers Hammer Jammers through the Sacred Harness Sacred Harness belt. Despite the difference in elemental damage, the recommended rune is Rapid Descent Rapid Descent; when used against good density you will have a new charge ready almost immediately, and you will be far less reliant on resets from the Seeker of the Light 2 piece bonus.

This concludes the overview of the active skills, now let us look through the passives.

Breaking the traditional two-hander mold, the Blessed Hammer Blessed Hammer Crusader benefits greatly from Johanna's Argument Johanna's Argument — and consequently, adopts Fervor Fervor as a foundation passive. Reforging the classic two-handed Crusader image into one of an attack speed and cooldown reduction specialist, this passive will ensure you get the most of your long timers and the Life per Hit on gear.

You can choose between Blunt Blunt and Holy Cause Holy Cause as one of your four passives; the former adds more than an item's worth of skill % bonus to your Blessed Hammer Blessed Hammers, while the latter trades some of that damage bonus for healing. Both options are viable and you are encouraged to pick the one that fits your playstyle best.

Crusaders possess an excellent cheat death passive in the face of Indestructible Indestructible, invariably taken when pushing the boundaries of Greater Rift progression. Operating on the standard 60-second cooldown, it sweetens the deal with a 5-second window of invulnerability after the proc, a 35% damage increase and a substantial Life per Kill boost. Indestructible triggers second in the chain of on-death mechanics, and is preceded by Prophet Prophet — essentially adding a third life while Akarat's Champion Akarat's Champion is active. Stacking of safety measures can be excessive in speedruns however, and if you do not feel threatened by the content you should replace this passive with Long Arm of the Law Long Arm of the Law. This change will ensure you have permanent uptime of the Laws of Hope Laws of Hope Wings of Angels Wings of Angels movement buffs.

Rounding out the standard four choices, Finery Finery is added as a balanced source of both damage and toughness. Providing with a 1.5% Strength increase for every socket of your gear, weapons and jewelry included, it amounts to a sizable boost with an assumed average of 10 sockets across a well-equipped character.

5. Best in Slot Gear and Alternatives

The build incorporates the full Seeker of the Light set, taking all six pieces available and leaving the jewelry to balance offense and defense with the Endless Walk set. Rolls-wise, this Blessed Hammer Blessed Hammer-centric playstyle makes good use of skill damage affixes on the Crown of the Light Crown of the Light and Foundation of the Light Foundation of the Light. Heart of the Light Heart of the Light and Towers of the Light Towers of the Light are dedicated to toughness rolls, and even Will of the Light Will of the Light incorporates a Vitality roll alongside the staple Crit Chance and Crit Damage. A Cooldown Reduction roll is taken as the fourth primary alongside Strength, Vitality and All Resistance on the Mountain of the Light Mountain of the Light, adding to the solid foundation of CDR present in the build.

Not skipping on any of the six available set pieces to obtain the full Seeker of the Light bonus allows you to split between offense and defense in the jewelry slots. One of the 2.4 reworks, the Endless Walk set — The Compass Rose The Compass Rose ring and The Traveler's Pledge The Traveler's Pledge amulet — adds a unique mechanic that slowly increases your damage by up to a 100% if you remain stationary, and drains it away and increases your damage reduction while moving. This dynamic fits the Hammerdin playstyle, which alternates long-distance jumps with periods of stationary Blessed Hammer Blessed Hammer spam.

As the build shifts from its former kiting playstyle into standing toe to toe with monsters, a socketed Unity Unity takes permanent residence in the second ring slot for Greater Rift progression. Unity Unity provides you with unparalleled damage reduction when paired with another on the follower, plus an immortality item for him (i.e. Enchanting Favor Enchanting Favor). When grouped up or speedfarming however, you should swap this protective item out for the rotation-based DPS increase of Convention of Elements Convention of Elements.

Created with this very build in mind, Gabriel's Vambraces Gabriel's Vambraces are the mandatory bracers for the build. One of your strongest resource management tools available, these bracers will allow you to pump out hammers at your normal AoE rate without worrying about the lack of targets to Provoke Provoke. Naturally, try to obtain as close to the 100% Wrath refund as you can while still aiming for the usual Strength, Vitality, Crit Chance and Holy Damage rolls.

Less clear-cut than your other slots, the belt allows for some wiggle room and experimentation. You can take two general directions: the DPS route with The Witching Hour The Witching Hour, whose Attack Speed and Crit Damage bonuses are second to none; or the tanking route, with the String of Ears String of Ears cementing your resilience to melee attacks. A third, exotic route is the Sacred Harness Sacred Harness belt, which adds a free Judgment Judgment Debilitate Debilitate effect at the landing location of your Falling Sword Falling Sword. This option becomes more attractive in 2.4, as it adds a second source of immobilization for the Hammer Jammers Hammer Jammers damage bonus.

Similarly to the bracers, a mandatory weapon and shield combo has been added to the game to specifically enhance the Blessed Hammer playstyle. Johanna's Argument Johanna's Argument is the recommended one-handed flail to take up your weapon slot, and what it lacks in elite and elemental bonuses, it makes up in a powerful unique property: increasing the Damage and Attack Speed of your Blessed Hammer Blessed Hammers by a whopping 100%. Rolls-wise, seek Life per Hit for some much-needed sustain, alongside the usual recommendations for high damage range, damage % and Strength properties.

The shield counterpart is the aptly named Guard of Johanna Guard of Johanna: tailored for a Blessed Hammer Blessed Hammer playstyle, it adds a massive damage boost of up to 250% against the first three targets you hit with a hammer. This adds a repositioning nuance to the build that often gets lost in the thick of a fight, but you would do well to remember, as it allows you to prioritise targets. It also shines during Rift Guardian fights, where the AoE superiority of the build takes a natural step backwards. For its rolls, try to obtain high Crit Chance, Strength, Blessed Hammer % and Vitality.

Slot Pieces Stat Priority
Head
  1. Strength
  2. Socket
  3. Critical Hit Chance
  4. Blessed Hammer Blessed Hammer %
  5. Vitality
Shoulders
  1. Strength
  2. Vitality
  3. Cooldown Reduction
  4. Area Damage
  5. All Resistance
Torso
  1. 3 Sockets
  2. Strength
  3. Vitality
  4. Reduced Damage from Elites
  5. All Resistance
Wrists
  1. Strength
  2. Critical Hit Chance
  3. Holy Damage
  4. Vitality
  5. Life per Hit
Hands
  1. Strength
  2. Critical Hit Chance
  3. Critical Hit Damage
  4. Vitality
Waist
  1. Strength
  2. Vitality
  3. Crit Damage (if The Witching Hour The Witching Hour)
  4. Attack Speed (if The Witching Hour The Witching Hour)
  5. All Resistance
  6. Life %
Legs
  1. 2 Sockets
  2. Strength
  3. Vitality
  4. All Resistance
  5. Armor
Feet
  1. Strength
  2. Vitality
  3. All Resistance
  4. Blessed Hammer Blessed Hammer %
  5. Movement Speed
Amulet
  1. Socket
  2. Critical Hit Damage
  3. Critical Hit Chance
  4. Holy Damage
  5. Strength
Ring #1
  1. Socket
  2. Critical Hit Chance
  3. Critical Hit Damage
  4. Strength
  5. Cooldown Reduction
Ring #2
  1. Socket
  2. Critical Hit Chance
  3. Critical Hit Damage
  4. Strength
  5. Cooldown Reduction
Weapon
  1. Socket (preferably from Ramaladni's Gift Ramaladni's Gift)
  2. Weapon Damage
  3. % Weapon Damage
  4. Strength
  5. Life per Hit
  6. Cooldown Reduction
Off-hand
  1. Strength
  2. Crit Chance
  3. Vitality
  4. Blessed Hammer Blessed Hammer %
  5. Socket

6. Paragon Points

Slot Paragon Points
Core
  1. Movement Speed up to 25% cap
  2. Strength
  3. Maximum Wrath (personal preference)
  4. Vitality
Offense
  1. Critical Hit Damage
  2. Critical Hit Chance
  3. Cooldown Reduction
  4. Attack Speed
Defense
  1. All Resistance
  2. Life %
  3. Armor
  4. Life Regeneration
Utility
  1. Area Damage
  2. Resource Cost Reduction
  3. Life on Hit
  4. Gold Find

7. Gems

Your three jewelry sockets will be taken up by the legendary gems Bane of the Trapped Bane of the Trapped, Gogok of Swiftness Gogok of Swiftness and Bane of the Stricken Bane of the Stricken.

  • Bane of the Trapped Bane of the Trapped is a potent source of additional damage, as it is its own multiplier in your total damage calculation. The gem procs itself with its level 25 property, and is otherwise kept up with Too Scared to Run Too Scared to Run, making it an inseparable part of the Blessed Hammer Crusader.
  • Gogok of Swiftness Gogok of Swiftness synergises well with the build, indirectly providing you with more cooldown resets and improved healing through your faster attacks. Your constant Blessed Hammer Blessed Hammer spam will easily cap the gem to its 15% Attack Speed and Cooldown Reduction limit, ensuring optimal uptime of your numerous defensive abilities. The 2.4.1 addition of scaling Dodge chance to the gem is just survivability icing on the cake.
  • Introduced in Season 4, Bane of the Stricken Bane of the Stricken occupies the third and final jewelry socket. Building up your damage multiplicatively in prolonged fights and with a level 25 bonus specifically targeting Rift Guardians, this gem is designed to assist AoE heavy builds in their struggle against single target, high HP enemies. The Blessed Hammer Crusader is no exception.
Slot Gems
Jewelry
Helm
Torso and Pants
Weapon

8. Kanai's Cube

The Kanai's Cube recommendations are as follows: The Furnace The Furnace for the weapon slot, Hammer Jammers Hammer Jammers for the armor slot, and Obsidian Ring of the Zodiac Obsidian Ring of the Zodiac for the jewelry slot.

  • The Furnace The Furnace provides you with an incomparable source of bonus elite damage, significantly shortening fights with champion packs and Rift Guardians — arguably the most dangerous fights in Greater Rifts.
  • Hammer Jammers Hammer Jammers are a targeted rework for the Hammerdin builds, and they take a guaranteed spot in the armor slot of the cube. The significant 400% damage bonus for 10 seconds against crowd controlled targets shifts the former kiting playstyle of the build into a more comfortable, deliberate pace that encourages you to jump into a big brawl and stay there, melting enemies caught within a Judgment Judgment snare.
  • Obsidian Ring of the Zodiac Obsidian Ring of the Zodiac is a powerful option for Crusaders to cube in the jewelry slot, easing the CDR management of this cooldown-centric class. Benefiting greatly from the attack speed inherent to this one hander build, it allows for near permanent uptime of vital skills like Akarat's Champion Akarat's Champion.

9. Follower

For more information regarding followers, we advise you to read our Follower Guide, which contains detailed advice for choosing the skills and the gear of your follower.

10. ChangeLog

  • 21 Oct. 2016: No changes needed for Season 8.
  • 27 Jul. 2016: Updated the guide to include speedrunning recommendations.
  • 19 Apr. 2016: Slight revision to reflect several item and skill changes.
  • 11 Jan. 2016: Updated the guide to reflect its Patch 2.4 buffs and Kanai's Cube swaps.
Force desktop version
Force mobile version