Akkhan Condemn Crusader BiS Gear, Gems, and Paragon Points
Below, we detail the items and gems that you should use for your Akkhan Condemn Crusader in Diablo 3 and why. We also list your paragon points and Kanai's Cube items. Updated for patch 2.6.4 and Season 16.
1. Best in Slot Gear and Alternatives
The backbone of every Condemn Crusader is, of course, the Akkhan set. Cooldown Reduction takes priority on the slots where you can get it — certainly on the Gauntlets of Akkhan, where it accompanies the Crit stats, as well as on the Pauldrons of Akkhan. The latter should also serve as a source of skill damage, as Condemn % can be rolled on both the Pauldrons of Akkhan and Breastplate of Akkhan. The Helm of Akkhan is largely a stat stick, where high Strength, Vitality and Crit Chance rolls are ideal. The inclusion of Leoric's Crown in your Cube choices allows you to drop one of the Cooldown Reduction rolls on gear for extra utility — this will be done in the belt slot, as discussed below.
For Season 16 adjustments, please refer to our dedicated section below.
Taking enough pieces to obtain the 6-piece bonus of the Akkhan set naturally opens a powerful offensive combo in the jewelry the Bastions of Will set, Focus and Restraint. This set is unmatched in damage potential with its 2.25 independent multiplier as long as you alternate between generating and spender attacks, a requirement which you fulfill by alternating Condemn with your generator of choice. Seek double Crit stats, Cooldown Reduction and an open Socket as the best-in-slot stats for both Focus and Restraint.
With the addition of Talisman of Akkhan late in the patch 2.4 life cycle, the Condemn Crusader is now able to incorporate an extra legendary armor piece and bridge some of the gaps in survivability an utility. To that end, we recommend equipping Illusory Boots in the place of Sabatons of Akkhan. Illusory Boots offer unparalleled freedom of movement, especially with the tendency of Vacuum to imprison you in a crowd of bloodthirsty mobs.
You have two viable options for the weapon slot; the dedicated Condemn sword Blade of Prophecy and elite demolisher The Furnace. The rule of thumb is that you will be wearing your better roll between the two items, and cubing the other. Ideally though, you will be wielding The Furnace due to its higher damage range and the fact that Condemn is unaffected by Attack Speed. Blade of Prophecy is also a mandatory weapon for the playstyle, a two handed sword tailored for a build based around Condemn. Its lifelong power (two additional Condemn triggers when at least two targets are present in the initial Condemn radius) has been bolstered by a substantial skill damage boost of up to 800%.
Frydehr's Wrath is the former Season 1 exclusive shield that turns the otherwise Cooldown-based nature of Condemn into a spender — an extremely potent effect, as proven by the Fires of Heaven rune from the Holy Shotgun build. Crit Chance and Cooldown Reduction rolls on this Crusader shield are mandatory for an endgame setup, and the shield has been strengthened in 2.6.1 with up to 800% Condemn damage affix as well.
The ideal belt for the build is the String of Ears, as its massive, unconditional melee damage reduction bonus will provide the greatest overall protection. String of Ears is especially consistent vs. Rift Guardians, where a former favorite utility legendary — Aquila Cuirass — is very prone to falling off.
Strongarm Bracers with high holy damage and unique property rolls are the best in slot bracers for Condemn when doing Greater Rifts, as the Vacuum rune will proc the additional damage on any enemy affected by the pull.
1.1. Season 16 Adjustments
During Season 16 (and in seasonal play only), you will be getting the benefits of Ring of Royal Grandeur passively, without the need to wear it. For the Akkhan Condemn Crusader, this eases resource management and ups damage in a single gearing adjustment.
The ability to drop one of the core set pieces — Cuisses of Akkhan — and replace it with a synergistic legendary is a great boon to the build. Hexing Pants of Mr. Yan have long been hovering around viability in the build, but were trumped by Illusory Boots' undeniable necessity for maneuvering during GR pushes with the Condemn build. The S16 free RoRG bonus allows you to wear both, practically removing the occasional resource troubles of the build in lower densities and solitary Guardian fights, as well as netting the build a considerable additive damage increase.
2. Paragon Points
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 triggered by the Too Scared to Run debuff, making it an inseparable part of this melee setup.
Esoteric Alteration is the strongest mitigation gem available, a welcome addition to a build that revels in drawing monsters on top of itself. Improving your elemental resistances with every gem level, as well as providing you with a last line of defense against one shots through the level 25 property, Esoteric Alteration edges over other defensive options like Molten Wildebeest's Gizzard and Mutilation Guard.
Introduced in Season 4, Bane of the Stricken takes a firm slot in the third jewelry socket when Greater Rifting. 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. Condemn is one of the oldest examples of such a build, making the gem mandatory.
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4. Kanai's Cube
When stored in the armor slot of the Cube, Leoric's Crown will double the effect of the gem slotted in your worn helm. With the high Cooldown Reduction goals of Akkhan builds in mind, you will be doubling up a Flawless Royal Diamond to ease the CDR strain on your gear and to allow wearing a String of Ears.
You have two viable options for the jewelry Cube slot. For high end Greater Rift pushing, you will have to use Convention of Elements — yet another elemental damage multiplier to the build, whose buff is cyclical in nature and you will have to keep in mind in order to optimize your positioning and damage potential during the short-lived Holy rotation. If you are farming lower tier GRs where that timing-sensitive extra damage is extraneous — say, you are doing gem ups for augmentation or you are playing Hardcore and don't want to risk a character during simple farming — you can use Unity in this slot. The power of this ring will reduce incoming damage in half when paired with a Unity worn by the follower, plus an immortality relic for him (i.e. Enchanting Favor).
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.
- 27 Jan. 2019: Revised Kanai's Cube recommendations for high end pushing.
- 17 Jan. 2019: Added suggestions for the baseline Ring of Royal Grandeur for Seasonal characters.
- 26 Nov. 2017: Revised gearing and cube recommendations to be more consistent in Rift Guardian fights.
- 31 Oct. 2017: Made a number of wording changes following the Akkhan set buffs of Patch 2.6.1. Esoteric Alteration replaces Taeguk and Convention of Elements is now recommended for the Jewelry slot of the Kanai's Cube in place of Unity.
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