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Twisting Blades Rogue Leveling Build Guide for Diablo 4 (Season 4)

Rapidly stab your foes to level quickly with Twisting Blades!

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Lexyu

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Twisting BladesPunctureDashShadow StepConcealmentShadow Imbuement


Build Introduction

The Twisting BladesTwisting Blades Rogue leveling build rapidly impales foes with dual-wielded weapons. This is your leveling guide for Diablo 4, with the maximum Skill Point allocation at Level 50. Let us go over the build mechanics, character progression, and playstyle!

Twisting BladesTwisting Blades deals high single target damage with 2 hits per cast, and the returning blades can be used to kill multiple enemies at a time with proper positioning. This fast-paced burst leveling build is highly recommended for new players starting their first Rogue character.

Once your Rogue character reaches Level 50 or enters World Tier 3, switch to the endgame guide for Twisting Blades to continue this build.

Check the Rogue leveling page for a comparison of all the leveling builds and general tips.

Skill Tree Points and Skill Bar

Skill Bar Setup for Twisting Blades Rogue (order does not matter)
Twisting Blades Twisting Blades Dash Dash Shadow Step Shadow Step Puncture Puncture Concealment Concealment Shadow Imbuement Shadow Imbuement

The following table shows the order in which to allocate your Skill Points for the Twisting Blades Rogue leveling build. You gain 48 points at Level 50 and 2 points from completing Renown in each Act zone, for a total of 58.

OrderSkillCluster
1PuncturePuncture Rank 1Basic SkillBasic Skill
2Enhanced PunctureEnhanced PunctureBasic SkillBasic Skill
3Twisting BladesTwisting Blades Rank 1Core SkillCore Skill
4Fundamental PunctureFundamental PunctureBasic SkillBasic Skill
5Enhanced Twisting BladesEnhanced Twisting BladesCore SkillCore Skill
6Improved Twisting BladesImproved Twisting BladesCore SkillCore Skill
7DashDash Rank 1Agility SkillAgility Skill
8Shadow StepShadow Step Rank 1Agility SkillAgility Skill
9Twisting BladesTwisting Blades Rank 2Core SkillCore Skill
10Twisting BladesTwisting Blades Rank 3Core SkillCore Skill
11Twisting BladesTwisting Blades Rank 4Core SkillCore Skill
12ConcealmentConcealment Rank 1Subterfuge SkillSubterfuge Skill
13Enhanced ConcealmentEnhanced ConcealmentSubterfuge SkillSubterfuge Skill
14Countering ConcealmentCountering ConcealmentSubterfuge SkillSubterfuge Skill
15Twisting BladesTwisting Blades Rank 5Core SkillCore Skill
16Enhanced Shadow StepEnhanced Shadow StepAgility SkillAgility Skill
17Shadow ImbuementShadow Imbuement Rank 1Imbuement SkillImbuement Skill
18Enhanced Shadow ImbuementEnhanced Shadow ImbuementImbuement SkillImbuement Skill
19Mixed Shadow ImbuementMixed Shadow ImbuementImbuement SkillImbuement Skill
20Shadow CrashShadow Crash Rank 1Imbuement SkillImbuement Skill
21Consuming ShadowsConsuming Shadows Rank 1Imbuement SkillImbuement Skill
22Consuming ShadowsConsuming Shadows Rank 2Imbuement SkillImbuement Skill
23Consuming ShadowsConsuming Shadows Rank 3Imbuement SkillImbuement Skill
24Methodical Shadow StepMethodical Shadow StepAgility SkillAgility Skill
25Adrenaline RushAdrenaline Rush Rank 1Ultimate SkillUltimate Skill
26HasteHaste Rank 1Ultimate SkillUltimate Skill
27HasteHaste Rank 2Ultimate SkillUltimate Skill
28HasteHaste Rank 3Ultimate SkillUltimate Skill
29ConcussiveConcussive Rank 1Agility SkillAgility Skill
30Trick AttacksTrick Attacks Rank 1Agility SkillAgility Skill
31Trick AttacksTrick Attacks Rank 2Agility SkillAgility Skill
32Trick AttacksTrick Attacks Rank 3Agility SkillAgility Skill
33ConcussiveConcussive Rank 2Agility SkillAgility Skill
34Close Quarters CombatClose Quarters Combat (switch to MomentumMomentum if you need Damage Reduction)Key PassivesKey Passives
35ConcussiveConcussive Rank 3Agility SkillAgility Skill
36Stutter StepStutter Step Rank 1Core SkillCore Skill
37Stutter StepStutter Step Rank 2Core SkillCore Skill
38Stutter StepStutter Step Rank 3Core SkillCore Skill
39ExploitExploit Rank 1Subterfuge SkillSubterfuge Skill
40ExploitExploit Rank 2Subterfuge SkillSubterfuge Skill
41ExploitExploit Rank 3Subterfuge SkillSubterfuge Skill
42MaliceMalice Rank 1Subterfuge SkillSubterfuge Skill
43MaliceMalice Rank 2Subterfuge SkillSubterfuge Skill
44MaliceMalice Rank 3Subterfuge SkillSubterfuge Skill
45AgileAgile Rank 1Subterfuge SkillSubterfuge Skill
46AgileAgile Rank 2Subterfuge SkillSubterfuge Skill
47AgileAgile Rank 3Subterfuge SkillSubterfuge Skill
48SturdySturdy Rank 1Core SkillCore Skill
49SturdySturdy Rank 2Core SkillCore Skill
50SturdySturdy Rank 3Core SkillCore Skill
51Siphoning StrikesSiphoning Strikes Rank 1Core SkillCore Skill
52Siphoning StrikesSiphoning Strikes Rank 2Core SkillCore Skill
53Siphoning StrikesSiphoning Strikes Rank 3Core SkillCore Skill
54Precision ImbuementPrecision Imbuement Rank 1Imbuement SkillImbuement Skill
55Precision ImbuementPrecision Imbuement Rank 2Imbuement SkillImbuement Skill
56Precision ImbuementPrecision Imbuement Rank 3Imbuement SkillImbuement Skill
57ImpetusImpetus Rank 1Ultimate SkillUltimate Skill
58ImpetusImpetus Rank 2Ultimate SkillUltimate Skill

Twisting Blades Rogue Specialization

The Rogue Specialization can be unlocked at Level 15. Complete the True Potential questline as soon as possible to gain access to the first Specialization option, Combo Points.

Build Combo Points with PuncturePuncture to unleash additional damage for Twisting BladesTwisting Blades. This option is preferred for general farming due to the burst damage playstyle.

Twisting Blades
Combo Points Are Counted Above the Skill Bar

Build Mechanics and Playstyle

The Twisting Blade Rogue leveling build is more involved to play than most others. Twisting BladesTwisting Blades damage is increased by several buffs to cause a devastating hit. Combo Points can be generated for additional damage. Shadow ImbuementShadow Imbuement turns the attack into Shadow damage. Finally, ConcealmentConcealment guarantees your opener to be a Critical Hit. After the first victim is impaled by Twisting Blades, DashDash and Shadow StepShadow Step are used to reposition around other enemies, so the returning blades can hit them. The flying blades retain the damage buffs of the initial impale, including the guaranteed Critical Hit!

Damage is increased further with Close Quarters CombatClose Quarters Combat, MaliceMalice, ExploitExploit, Precision ImbuementPrecision Imbuement and ImpetusImpetus. Survivability is gained through AgileAgile and SturdySturdy, while Siphoning StrikesSiphoning Strikes sustain Life. Finally, Stutter StepStutter Step and HasteHaste speed up movement for faster farming.

Status Effects

The Twisting Blades Rogue utilizes Crowd Control effects to render Elites helpless. Methodical Shadow StepMethodical Shadow Step Stuns for 2 seconds and closes the gap. Follow up with Twisting BladesTwisting Blades to Daze your target. Once Dazed, Critical Hits activate Trick AttacksTrick Attacks to continuously Knock Down the enemy.

Fundamental PunctureFundamental Puncture easily applies Vulnerable to a target with a single Basic attack. In group play, apply this debuff to Elites and Bosses so your teammates deal 20% more damage. Stack Damage to Crowd Controlled and Vulnerable Enemies on gear and the Paragon Board to scale your damage further.

AoE Damage Rotation

Explode groups of mobs with the following rotation.

  1. (Optional) Initiate combat with Shadow StepShadow Step to close the gap, targeting the toughest opponent to Stun it.
  2. Immediately activate both ConcealmentConcealment and Shadow ImbuementShadow Imbuement to buff your next attack.
  3. Cast Twisting BladesTwisting Blades one or two times on the target, depending on how tough it is.
  4. Use DashDash or Evade to move through any additional enemies so the returning blades pierce through them.
  5. Use PuncturePuncture to finish off any injured enemies, generate Energy and build Combo Points for your next Twisting BladesTwisting Blades.
  6. Cast additional Twisting BladesTwisting Blades on any remaining enemies with high health.
  7. Repeat the rotation when cooldowns are ready.

Single Target Damage Rotation

Use the following rotation against Bosses for high sustained single target DPS.

  1. (Optional) Close the gap to the target with Shadow StepShadow Step.
  2. Rapidly cast PuncturePuncture three times to build up Combo Points. Stand close enough to the target to hit twice, applying Vulnerable.
  3. If not on cooldown, activate ConcealmentConcealment to guarantee the next Critical Hit.
  4. If not on cooldown, activate Shadow ImbuementShadow Imbuement for more damage.
  5. Cast Twisting BladesTwisting Blades once on the target.
  6. Repeat the rotation. Get into the rhythm of casting 3 Basic attacks for Combo Points before each Twisting BladesTwisting Blades.

Gear, Gems, Elixirs, and Stats

Season 4 brings an incredible shift in character progression systems. The major rework to itemization and crafting in Patch 1.4.0 changes the core mechanics of Diablo 4, and the changes will remain in effect beyond Season 4. The following sections cover the important systems that are essential to improving the power of your character during the leveling process.

Legendary Aspects

Bladedancer's AspectBladedancer’s Aspect can be unlocked in the Codex of Power by completing the Jalal’s Vigil dungeon in Scosglen. Visit the Occultist to imprint this Aspect onto an item for Twisting BladesTwisting Blades to orbit you for a short time after they return. Imprint onto a Bow or Crossbow to gain a +100% bonus effect. You do not need to replace your ranged weapon often, as this build doesn’t use any ranged skills. A Crossbow with useful damage increase stats is preferred.

Higher Tier Aspects with stronger effects can be found on dropped Legendary Items. Salvage unwanted Legendary Items at the Blacksmith to unlock these Aspects in the Codex of Power, and the imprint them onto well-rolled Rare Items. Check the in-depth Aspect and Codex of Power guide for more information.

Listed below are all the Aspects found on Legendary Items that are important for the Twisting Blades Rogue leveling build. They are listed in order of priority. The best-in-slot Aspects List is in the Endgame Guide for Twisting Blades Rogue.

Aspect NameLegendary Aspect PowerSource
Bladedancer's AspectBladedancer’s AspectTwisting BladesTwisting Blades orbit for a short time after they return to you, dealing [10 – 15%] of Twisting Blades’ return damage per hit. Based on the distance the blades returned, the orbit damage increases up to [20 – 30%] of the return damage.Jalal’s Virgil, Scosglen
Edgemaster's AspectEdgemaster’s AspectSkills deal up to [10 – 20%] increased damage based on your available Primary Resource when cast, receiving the maximum benefit while you have full Primary Resource.Oldstones, Scosglen
Aspect of the ExpectantAspect of the ExpectantAttacking enemies with a Basic Skill increases the damage of your next Core Skill cast by [5 – 10%], up to 30%.Underroot, Scosglen
Aspect of RetributionAspect of RetributionDistant enemies have a 8% chance to be Stunned for 2 seconds when they hit you. You deal [20 – 40%] increased damage to Stunned enemies.Abandoned Mineworks, Kehjistan
Ravager's AspectRavager’s AspectShadow StepShadow Step has an additional Charge. Killing an enemy with Shadow Step refunds a Charge and increases the damage of Shadow Step by [1 – 6%] for 2 seconds, up to [5 – 30%].Random Drop Only
Aspect of MightAspect of MightBasic Skills grant 20% Damage Reduction for [2 – 6] secondsDark Ravine, Dry Steppes
Rapid AspectRapid AspectBasic Skills gain [15 – 30%] Attack Speed.Buried Halls, Dry Steppes
Accelerating AspectAccelerating AspectCritical Strikes with Core Skills increase your Attack Speed by [15 – 25%] for 3 seconds.Random Drop Only

Gems

Listed below are the best Gems to socket into gear for each item type.

SlotGems
WeaponRoyal SapphireRoyal Sapphire for increased Vulnerable Damage.
ArmorRoyal RubyRoyal Ruby for increased Maximum Life or Royal TopazRoyal Topaz to prevent deaths from chain Crowd Controls.
JewelryAny Resistance Gems needed or Royal SkullRoyal Skull for Armor (up to 9,230 Armor cap).

Elixirs

Visit the Alchemist in any main town to craft helpful Elixirs that increase stats and experience gain for 30 minutes. Make sure to forage plants and pick up the necessary crafting materials during your adventures; they randomly spawn around the world. Elixirs can also drop randomly from enemies and chests during many activities in Diablo 4. Listed below are the best Elixirs to consume, ranked by importance.

  1. Elixir of ResourceElixir of Resource greatly helps with Energy issues, if you do not already have the appropriate Energy gear. This elixir is highly recommended for starting characters to maintain casting of Core Skills.
  2. Elixir of PrecisionElixir of Precision provides the highest damage output increase, if not already capped at 100% Critical Strike Chance.
  3. Elixir of AdvantageElixir of Advantage increases damage output, if not already capped at 100% Attack Speed bonus from gear and Paragon.
  4. Elixir of FortitudeElixir of Fortitude is the best general purpose option for survivability.

Return to the Alchemist again when you reach Level 20, 30, 45, 60, 70, 80 and 90, to upgrade your potion. The extra healing is essential to survival.

Stat Priority and Tempering Affixes

Listed below are the affixes to prioritize on gear during early leveling of a Twisting Blades Rogue. Each line of affixes are listed in order of importance. Affixes on the same line are considered to be equally important, but their benefits may vary depending how much is stacked or other character stats.

When comparing weapons with similar item levels, Crossbows are preferred over Bows for the Vulnerable Damage implicit stat. Daggers are preferred over Swords for the slightly stronger implicit stat and faster Combo Point generation.

Tempering Manuals are randomly dropped while leveling, and they need to be found to unlock their usage at the Blacksmith. Highlighted affixes are the the most beneficial temper to prioritize while leveling. All other tempers may not be worthwhile during early levels if you are consistently replacing gear with new item upgrades.

SlotGear AffixesTempering Affixes
Weapons1. Maximum Life
2. Dexterity, Critical Strike Damage, Vulnerable Damage
Basic Augments — RogueBasic Augments — Rogue (Weapon): Twisting Blades Returns Faster
Specialist EvolutionSpecialist Evolution (Offensive): Damage per Combo Point Spent
Helm1. Cooldown Reduction, Energy per Second, Ranks to Shadow Imbuement
2. Resistances, Armor
3. Maximum Life, Dexterity, Lucky Hit Chance
Natural SchemesNatural Schemes (Utility): Crowd Control Duration
Rogue RecoveryRogue Recovery (Defensive): Flurry Healing
Chest1. Energy per Second
2. Resistances, Armor
3. Maximum Life, Dexterity
Natural SchemesNatural Schemes (Utility): Crowd Control Duration
Rogue RecoveryRogue Recovery (Defensive): Flurry Healing
Gloves1. Ranks to Twisting Blades, Critical Strike Chance, Attack Speed
2. Resistances, Armor
3. Resource Cost Reduction, Maximum Life, Lucky Hit Chance
Specialist EvolutionSpecialist Evolution (Offensive): Damage per Combo Point Spent
Natural SchemesNatural Schemes (Utility): Crowd Control Duration
Pants1. Resistances, Armor
2. Maximum Life, Dexterity
Natural SchemesNatural Schemes (Utility): Crowd Control Duration
Rogue RecoveryRogue Recovery (Defensive): Flurry Healing
BootsImplicit Stat: Attacks Reduce Evade’s Cooldown
1. Movement Speed, Energy per Second
2. Resistances, Armor
3. Ranks to Dash, Maximum Life, Dexterity
Natural MotionNatural Motion (Mobility): Movement Speed
Natural SchemesNatural Schemes (Utility): Crowd Control Duration
Amulet1. Ranks to Exploit, Critical Strike Chance, Cooldown Reduction, Attack Speed
2. Movement Speed, Armor
Imbuement AbundanceImbuement Abundance (Resource): Shadow Imbue Additional Casts
Natural MotionNatural Motion (Mobility): Movement Speed
Rings1. Critical Strike Chance, Attack Speed
2. Resource Cost Reduction, Critical Strike Damage, Vulnerable Damage, Resistances, Maximum Life
3. Dexterity, Lucky Hit Chance
Imbuement AbundanceImbuement Abundance (Resource): Shadow Imbue Additional Casts
Specialist EvolutionSpecialist Evolution (Offensive): Damage per Combo Point Spent

Paragon

Paragon unlocks after reaching Level 50, and the progression system offers a considerable boost to character power. The images below provide a visual of an early Paragon board setup for the Twisting Blades Rogue.

The Paragon boards in this leveling guide are designed as a temporary setup for characters that have recently reached Level 50. Continue your progress with the fully optimized Paragon setup in the Twisting Blades endgame guide.

Important Notes:

  • Make sure you select the correct Legendary Boards and rotate them into the correct orientation.
  • Attach Legendary Boards in the correct order, as bonus requirements of Rare Nodes increase with their placement order.
  • Additional bonus requirements on Rare Glyphs may not be obtainable until they gain increased radius range at Level 15.

1. Starting Board (Closer)

Socket CloserCloser in the starting board for some valuable Damage Reduction.

2. Tricks of the Trade (Turf)

Rotate the Tricks of the TradeTricks of the Trade board 2 times before attachment. Immediately obtain the Legendary node, and then Socket TurfTurf for some valuable Damage Reduction. Prioritize leveling Turf to 15 for increased radius, as it is needed to allocate enough Strength to activate the additional bonus.

3. Cheap Shot (Control)

Rotate the Cheap ShotCheap Shot board 2 times before attachment. Immediately obtain the Legendary node on this board. Socket ControlControl to gain Damage to Crowd Controlled Enemies for an increased damage bonus on Close Quarters CombatClose Quarters Combat.

Paragon Board images courtesy of d4builds.gg. Click this link for the Paragon planner.

Changelog

  • May 15th, 2024: Priority Affixes updated with game changes made since the Season 4 PTR.
  • May 14th, 2024: Guide updated for Season 4 (Patch 1.4.0).
  • January 22nd, 2024: Guide updated for Season 3 (Patch 1.3.0).
  • October 17th, 2023: Guide updated for Season 2 (Patch 1.2.0).
  • July 18th, 2023: Guide updated for Season 1.
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