Blessed Hammer Crusader BiS Gear, Gems, and Paragon Points
Below, we detail the items and gems that you should use for your Blessed Hammer 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 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-centric playstyle makes good use of skill damage affixes on the Crown of the Light and Foundation of the Light. Heart of the Light and Towers of the Light are dedicated to toughness rolls, while Will of the Light incorporates a CDR roll alongside the staple Crit Chance and Crit Damage. A Cooldown Reduction roll is also taken as the fourth primary alongside Strength, Vitality and Area Damage on the Mountain of the Light, adding to the solid foundation of CDR present in the build.
For Season 16 adjustments, please refer to our dedicated section below.
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 ring and 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 spam. Your second ring slot should be taken by Convention of Elements; the ring rotates through all elements available to Crusaders, providing a massive bonus to your main damage skill during the Holy proc.
Created with this very build in mind, 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. 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.
The Sacred Harness belt is a dedicated legendary for Hammerdin builds, which adds a free Judgment Debilitate effect at the landing location of your Falling Sword — an indispensable effect for the GR variation of the build.
Similarly to the bracers and belt, a mandatory weapon and shield combo has been added to the game to specifically enhance the Blessed Hammer playstyle. 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 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: tailored for a 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 it, as it allows you to prioritize 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, Cooldown Reduction and Vitality.
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 Blessed Hammer Crusader, this enables some extra damage to be added to the build.
Naturally, reducing your worn set requirements via the free RoRG allows you to drop a Seeker of the Light piece — and our recommendation is to replace the Towers of the Light with Hammer Jammers, freeing up the armor slot in the Cube. Note the significant range of the unique bonus of those pants however, and make a point to gamble for a well rolled piece to equip; a decent chunk of damage will otherwise be lost. Our recommendation for the freed up armor Cube slot is Leoric's Crown, the strongest cooldown reduction piece in the game when coupled with the Flawless Royal Diamond in your helm. This legendary power helps with the uptime of Iron Skin, Laws of Valor and most importantly, Akarat's Champion.
2. Paragon Points
Bane of the Trapped is a massive source of additional damage, which is a separate 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 and Judgment, making it an inseparable part of the Blessed Hammer Crusader.
Gogok of Swiftness synergises well with the build in Greater Rift pushes, indirectly providing you with more cooldown resets and improved healing through your faster attacks. 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 occupies the third and final jewelry socket during GR progression. 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. When facing less threatening content (lower GRs or regular difficulties), this slot is better served by the overall damage boost of Bane of the Powerful.
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4. Kanai's Cube
Faithful Memory is a Patch 2.4.3 rework that greatly increases Blessed Hammer damage according to the number of enemies struck by Falling Sword. Note that this slot is theoretically interchangeable with Johanna's Argument depending on your better rolled item, but Blessed Hammer scales much better in an attack speed, one hander-oriented build, making equipping Faithful Memory a temporary solution.
Hammer Jammers are a targeted rework for the Hammerdin builds, and they take a guaranteed spot in the armor slot of the cube. The massive, temporary damage bonus 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 snare.
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.
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 the Season 16 extra slot recommendation.
- 17 Jan. 2019: Added suggestions for the baseline Ring of Royal Grandeur for Seasonal characters.
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