Support Barbarian BiS Gear, Gems, and Paragon Points
Below, we detail the items and gems that you should use for your Support Barbarian 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
Following the role stereotypes, the Support Barb uses a mixture of sets and utility legendaries to maximize Toughness, cooldown and resource management. Note that the value of experience gemming and gear has been greatly diminished since Patch 2.4, all but eliminating the formerly favored XP-oriented item setups.
For Season 16 adjustments, please refer to our dedicated section below.
The desired armor set is The Legacy of Raekor, incorporating Raekor's Wraps, Raekor's Burden, Raekor's Breeches and Raekor's Heart to attain Furious Charge CDR from the 2-piece bonus and all runes from the 4-piece bonus. Rolls-wise, aim for Vitality, Cooldown Reduction and Crit Chance on Raekor's Wraps, CDR and Toughness stats on Raekor's Burden, and full Toughness stats on Raekor's Breeches and Raekor's Heart.
Free of damage dealing concerns, the support Barbarian can focus on pure utility in the jewelry. You have three recommended rings — Obsidian Ring of the Zodiac, Band of Might and Oculus Ring — two of which you will equip and Cube the third, according to your better rolled items. Obsidian Ring of the Zodiac is a powerful tool for this cooldown-heavy build: benefiting greatly from the heavy Ancient Spear use, it allows for permanent uptime of crucial abilities like Ignore Pain, Threatening Shout, and War Cry. Band of Might will provide you with up to 80% damage reduction for the paltry requirement of a Furious Charge once every 8 seconds — a mandatory ingredient of your survival in high GRs. Finally, the revamped Oculus Ring will provide up to the impressive 85% multiplicative damage buff in a circular area for your DPS party members to stand in. While its wording is vague, it does trigger off assists, and will thus work on support characters.
To complete the jewelry, initially it is recommended to obtain an immunity amulet for a highly lethal source of elemental damage. Xephirian Amulet, which renders you immune to lightning, or The Star of Azkaranth against fire, are highly desirable options during lower Paragons, when your survival still is not cemented. With a highly progressed character, you should branch out into the increased pickup radius of Rondal's Locket to improve group utility, or a nicely rolled Hellfire Amulet of Strength with a synergistic passive like Relentless.
A crucial piece for the Support Barbarian is the mighty belt Pride of Cassius, whose legendary power extends the duration of Ignore Pain by up to 6 seconds. Obtaining the maximum value of the unique bonus solidifies the uptime of your strongest mitigation buff, and thankfully the belt is common enough to obtain a BiS roll relatively quickly. Regardless, it can be cubed if you get a well-rolled Chilanik's Chain first; stat-wise the two belts are interchangeable, but Chilanik's Chain is easier to maximize through Kanai's Cube because of its broader legendary affix range.
Resetting survivability cooldowns is top priority in Greater Rifts, and no other helm will empower your socket bonuses quite like a Leoric's Crown. Essentially doubling the effect of the gem slotted in your helm, this legendary will bump your CDR by 25% with a Flawless Royal Diamond.
You have some wiggle room when deciding on your bracer; a case can be made for the party-wide additive damage increase of Strongarm Bracers, triggered by the Furious Charge knockup. Better yet though, you can take the elite-spawning Nemesis Bracers to shorten the time spent looking for champion packs — at least one elite spawner should be present in the group, and you are well suited to the task as the scout.
Illusory Boots are a crucial piece for the mobility of the build, allowing you to ignore collision and pass freely through enemies — an indispensable bonus for a character tasked with scouting and monster control. These boots are farmed through Act II bounty caches, and are relatively easy to obtain with a good roll due to their fixed stats and no-range affix. Stat-wise, aim strictly for Toughness.
You have a degree of freedom in choosing your weapon and offhand, with many recognized and highly ranking viable combinations. If you are new to the playstyle, you can start out with a Pig Sticker — Stormshield combo. The experienced Barb support however will wield the set swords Little Rogue and The Slanderer for endgame pushing. While depriving you of the Stormshield defensive bulwark, these weapons will sync with the overall goals of the support Barbarian by supplying you with 30% Armor and Attack Speed when fully stacked. Stat-wise, supports care nothing about Weapon Damage, so your main- and off-hand items are a pure stat sticks that needs Strength, Vitality, Cooldown Reduction, Attack Speed, and ideally the damage range gets rerolled into Resource Cost Reduction (or one of the missing aforementioned stats).
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 Support Barbarian builds, this allows you to free up a single set armor slot for a synergistic legendary item.
The Support build does not receive massive benefits from the inclusion of a free RoRG, but can still drop a single Raekor piece — say, Raekor's Heart — and gain another source of damage reduction from Aquila Cuirass. This defensive bonus can be useful during early GR pushes, and is trivial to maintain with the minor resource spending in the build.
2. Paragon Points
Wreath of Lightning provides you with a nice AoE proc to aggro enemies with, along with an extremely helpful 25% movement speed for the duration of the proc — easily obtainable from the gem's level 25 property.
Gogok of Swiftness synergizes well with the build, indirectly providing the entire party with more survivability by increasing your essential Cooldown Reduction, as well as substantial personal Toughness from the Dodge bonuses.
The recommended gem for your third and final jewelry slot is Gem of Efficacious Toxin, for the party-wide damage increase against — and reduced damage from — enemies affected by its poisonous DoT.
|Torso and Pants||
4. Kanai's Cube
You have several viable options for the weapons slot in Kanai's Cube, without any exceptional standouts. A generic recommendation for the slot is In-geom, whose cooldown-resetting powers will allow a window of utility skill spam after every elite. Other options include The Burning Axe of Sankis (for the toughness proc), Odyn Son (for the chain lightning proc that aggroes nearby enemies), or even Vigilance (for the AoE safety bubble).
One core Kanai's Cube item is Chilanik's Chain for the armor slot. This belt provides a party-wide movement speed buff when you activate War Cry, essential both during XP runs (for efficiency) and progression content (to skip bad fights). As mentioned above, this slot is interchangeable with Pride of Cassius depending on your better rolled item.
- 27 Jan. 2019: Updated the build to more closely match the current meta.
- 16 Jan. 2019: Added suggestions for the baseline Ring of Royal Grandeur for Seasonal characters.
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