Whirlwind Barbarian Endgame Build Guide for Diablo 4 (Season 1)

The classic Diablo 'Spin to Win' Whirlwind game guide.




Updated: Posted:

Rallying CryWar CryChallenging ShoutWrath of the BerserkerLunging StrikeWhirlwind

Build Introduction

This is your comprehensive guide for building this classic Barbarian, who spins with weapons extended to slice and dice the hordes of Hell. Welcome to our Whirlwind Barbarian. This build jumps into the action with a devil-may-care attitude as it cuts down the enemy with WhirlwindWhirlwind, unleashing its Fury non-stop leaving nothing standing.

Strengths and Weaknesses

  • Great damage for AoE and single target
  • Great Mobility
  • Good Defensive Layers
  • Fury Management
  • Cooldown Management

To see how this build compares to the other builds on our site, you can check out our build tier lists.

Build Requirements

This build has several Legendary Aspects that are required before it will function properly. The Legendary Aspects you will need the following at a minimum to make the build work at its most basic level. These Aspects are all non-codex, which means you will need to find them on a Legendary Item then imprint them onto specific gear.

Required Aspects (Non-codex)

To even begin this build, we recommend you have these Aspects ready for imprinting at a minimum. For the build it become fully functional, we recommend you have all the Legendary Aspects listed further in this guide for the build to work optimally.

Season of the Malignant

Season 1 Patch Updates

This build was created within the current Season and utilizes the current in game information and Aspects. We will note any future changes to this build here.

Patch 1.1.1

The second major update for Season 1, Patch 1.1.1 released on August 8th 2023, brings some positive changes to Barbarian. This includes adjustments to Basic Generator Skills, Key Passives, Skill passives and Legendary Aspects. The changes that directly affect this build are listed below.

Malignant Hearts

The theme for Season 1 introduces a new form of legendary gem called Malignant Hearts. There are three types of hearts that need to be socketed into matching colored sockets on all equipped jewelry and one type of heart that can be placed into any socket. For more information about the Malignant Hearts theme for Season 1 check out our Malignant Hearts guide.

Listed below are the Malignant Hearts that are useful for this build, ranked by importance. Stats displayed reflect what a Level 20 character would receive as a drop. Note that this list is based on our early opinions on the Malignant Hearts, and we will update it as and when it is necessary.

  1. Caged Heart of Focused RageCaged Heart of Focused Rage
  2. Caged Heart of the Malignant PactCaged Heart of the Malignant Pact
  3. Caged Heart of Tempting FateCaged Heart of Tempting Fate

Of course, with any build that targets Critical Strike Chance you can add in the Caged Heart of The BarberCaged Heart of The Barber for huge bursts of damage.

Skill Tree Points and Skill Bar

Skill Bar Setup for the Whirlwind Build (Order does not matter)
Whirlwind Whirlwind Lunging Strike Lunging Strike Wrath of the Berserker Wrath of the Berserker Rallying Cry Rallying Cry War Cry War Cry Challenging Shout Challenging Shout

Follow the points allocated in the image above for the complete 58 point build. The additional 10 skill points are completed using the Renown system.

Whirlwind Barbarian SkillsCluster
Lunging StrikeLunging Strike Level 1, Enhanced Lunging StrikeEnhanced Lunging Strike, Combat Lunging StrikeCombat Lunging StrikeBasic SkillBasic Skill
WhirlwindWhirlwind Level 5, Enhanced WhirlwindEnhanced Whirlwind, Furious WhirlwindFurious Whirlwind, Pressure PointPressure Point Level 3Core SkillCore Skill
Rallying CryRallying Cry Level 1, Enhanced Rallying CryEnhanced Rallying Cry, Tactical Rallying CryTactical Rallying Cry, Challenging ShoutChallenging Shout Level 1, Enhanced Challenging ShoutEnhanced Challenging Shout, Tactical Challenging ShoutTactical Challenging ShoutDefensive SkillDefensive Skill
War CryWar Cry Level 1, Enhanced War CryEnhanced War Cry, Mighty War CryMighty War Cry, Booming VoiceBooming Voice Level 3, Raid LeaderRaid Leader Level 3, Guttural YellGuttural Yell Level 3, Aggressive ResistanceAggressive Resistance Level 3, Prolific FuryProlific Fury Level 3Brawling SkillBrawling Skill
Pit FighterPit Fighter Level 3, No MercyNo Mercy Level 3, Slaying StrikeSlaying Strike Level 3, HamstringHamstring Level 1Weapon Mastery SkillWeapon Mastery Skill
Wrath of the BerserkerWrath of the Berserker, Prime Wrath of the BerserkerPrime Wrath of the Berserker, Supreme Wrath of the BerserkerSupreme Wrath of the Berserker, Heavy HandedHeavy Handed Level 3, Tempered FuryTempered Fury Level 1, Invigorating FuryInvigorating Fury Level 3Ultimate SkillUltimate Skill
Unbridled RageUnbridled RageKey PassivesKey Passives

Weapon Expertise – The Barbarian Specialization

Weapon Expertise is a set of benefits tied to which weapons you use as a Barbarian. To unlock your Expertise, simply hit Level 5 and the tab below will be made available. By using a certain weapon type, you will begin to gain ranks with that weapon as you fight. The ranks are from 0 to 10 and will level up moderately quickly as your character gains experience. Once your expertise hit rank 10, you will be maxed out on the benefit for using that weapon with your skills. As a reminder, to swap your assigned weapon to the skill you are using, go to your Skill selection list (not Skill Tree) and you will see the how to switch it. For mouse and keyboard users, you can access this by pressing the middle mouse button. At Level 15, you will unlock the Masters of Battle quest. This quest will be available in township of ‘Ked Bardu’ from the Forgemaster Gerti. Upon completing this quest you will unlock the Technique slots as seen below. This will offer you an additional permanent bonus from one of the weapons regardless of whether you have it equipped to a skill or not.

Weapon Expertise Barbarian D4

For the Whirlwind build, we will be focused using the expertise of Two-Handed Axe for the bonus damage against Vulnerable Damage.


We recommend using these Legendary nodes and Rare Glyphs to truly take this build into the endgame. Note that each Rare Glyph’s information listed below is for the Level 21 version.

Rare NodeEffect
ExploitExploit– For every 5 Dexterity purchased within range, you deal + [4%] increased damage to Vulnerable targets.
– Additional Bonus unlocked after 25 Dexterity points are purchased in the glyph’s range: When an enemy is damaged by you, they become Vulnerable for 3 seconds. This cannot happen more than once every 20 seconds per enemy.
TerritorialTerritorial– For every 5 Dexterity purchased within range, you deal +[10]% increased damage to Close targets.
– Additional Bonus unlocked after 25 Dexterity points are purchased in the glyph’s range: You gain 10% Damage Reduction against Close enemies.
WrathWrath– For every 5 Dexterity purchased within range, Core Skills deal + [7.5%] increased Critical Strike Damage.
– Additional Bonus unlocked after 25 Dexterity points are purchased in the glyph’s range: Skill that Critical Strike generate 3 Fury.
DisembowelDisembowelFor every 5 Willpower purchased within range, you deal +[8%] increased Bleeding damage.
Additional Bonus unlocked after 25 Willpower points are purchased in the glyph’s range: Killing a Bleeding enemy has a 10% chance to reduce the Cooldowns of your Non-Ultimate active Cooldowns by 1 second.
MarshalMarshal– Grants +[125%] bonus to all Magic nodes within range.
– Additional Bonus unlocked after 40 Strength points are purchased in the glyph’s range: After casting a Shout Skill, the active Cooldown of every other Shout Skill is reduced by 1.2 seconds.
ImbiberImbiber– For every 5 Willpower purchased within range, you deal +[9.8]% increased damage while Healthy
– Additional Bonus unlocked after 25 Willpower points are purchased in glyph’s range: You gain 30% increased Potion Healing.

Let’s break down each of these beneficial nodes and where our Paragon Points are positioned in each of the Paragon Boards we use. This part of the build is present in an order of importance. If you do not have enough Paragon Points for use in your Paragon Tree, just slowly work towards each step.

Starting Board

Starting Board
  1. Take the pathway up the right hand side of the board towards the open Glyph slot, taking BrawnBrawn along the path.
  2. Now insert TerritorialTerritorial into the Glyph slot and take the needed DexterityDexterity nodes for the added bonus to Close enemies.
  3. Take both Rare Nodes, Iron StrengthIron Strength and Raw PowerRaw Power, this will boost your raw Damage and overall Armor.
  4. Continue to the top of the board and attach the next paragon board Warbringer.

Warbringer (2nd Board)

  1. Head towards the open Glyph slot and insert ExploitExploit, this glyph will increase your damage against Vulnerable targets.
  2. Now take both the Rare Nodes, ConditionedConditioned and Raw PowerRaw Power, for increased Armor and Resistances.
  3. Be sure to take the all the DexterityDexterity as shown above.
  4. Now take the pathway to the left hand side of the board, continue passed this point and towards the Rare Node Hungering FuryHungering Fury.
  5. Keep going along the pathway to the Legendary Node WarbringerWarbringer, this will help to Fortify us as we continue to channel WhirlwindWhirlwind.
  6. Next, we will take the Rare Node Guarded AdvanceGuarded Advance.
  7. Now attach the Flawless Technique paragon board on the left hand side of the board:

Flawless Technique (3rd Board)

Flawless Technique
  1. Path towards the open Glyph slot and pick up the Rare Node HavocHavoc. This will boost your Critical Strike Damage.
  2. Insert DisembowelDisembowel into the open Glyph slot, this will help your Cooldowns with each bleeding enemy that is killed.
  3. Now take the two Rare Nodes, BrashBrash and Heavy BlowsHeavy Blows, these will increase our Damage Reduction against Close Enemies and our Critical Strike Damage for one-handed weapons.
  4. Now head to the top of the board, and attach the Decimator paragon board.

Decimator (4th Board)

  1. Head towards the open Glyph slot and insert ImbiberImbiber, these glyph increases damage to Healthy enemies.
  2. Now take the two Rare Nodes inside the glyph radius, ArroganceArrogance and DemolishDemolish, these will will increase your offenses and defenses against Vulnerable Enemies.
  3. Be sure to take the needed WillpowerWillpower nodes for the bonus.
  4. Now take the path towards the right hand side connection point and attach the Weapons Master paragon board.

Weapons Master (5th Board)

Weapon Master
  1. Head towards the open Glyph slot, picking up the Rare Node Iron StrengthIron Strength along the pathway.
  2. Insert the Glyph MarshalMarshal, this will boost all the Magic nodes in the radius and help our Shout Cooldowns.
  3. Now take the next Rare Node in the radius, Raw PowerRaw Power, this will boost our Physical Damage.
  4. Take the next Rare Node Hunter KillerHunter Killer, this helps increase our damage towards Elites.
  5. Now move to the top of the board and attach the next paragon board, Bone Breaker.

Bone Breaker (6th board)

Bone Breaker
  1. Head towards the open Glyph slot and insert WrathWrath, this will boost our Critical Strike Damage and gives us Fury on Critical Strikes.
  2. Take all the DexterityDexterity nodes shown above.
  3. Lastly, take the Rare Node VigorVigor for the increased Damage Reduction.

Paragon board images courtesy of

Build Mechanics and Playstyle

This Diablo classic has a simple gameplay loop: enter a state of Berserking and activate your WhirlwindWhirlwind. While is there much more going on behind the scenes with our Shouts and Ultimate skills, this build really focuses on the ability to stay in Whirlwind and tear through groups of enemies.

You can choose to start to spin by using either War CryWar Cry or Wrath of the BerserkerWrath of the Berserker. This decision will depend on what enemies you are about to face, picking our Ultimate as our choice if we are facing down several elites. Once you have entered a state of Berserking, and built up a sufficient amount of Fury from using your Lunging StrikeLunging Strike. Begin to channel your WhirlwindWhirlwind attack and crash into the enemies, spinning through them freely as you stack Bleeding Damage and Critical Strikes.

As your Fury begins to fade, use your next Shout Rallying CryRallying Cry to increase your movement speed and Fury generation. Next, hit your Challenging ShoutChallenging Shout, aiming to use the skill while you are in the thick of the pack of enemies so you hit as many of them as you can. This will gain you a boost in Fury per enemy near you and increase your Damage Reduction by 40%. Continue to spin with WhirlwindWhirlwind and down the remaining enemies or move on to the next pack, dragging the stragglers left behind along with you.

This simple loop can be repeated over and over, using Lunging StrikeLunging Strike to top off your Fury and trigger Berserking from Critical Strikes. Don’t forget to use Wrath of the BerserkerWrath of the Berserker when you encounter Elites and watch them get mowed down.

Fury Generation

One major component to this build is the Fury Generation to help you continue to spin endlessly. To succeed at this we have several ways to gain Fury:


Berserking gives us a base increase of 25% damage and 30% movement speed, we also benefit from the passives Aggressive ResistanceAggressive Resistance and Prolific FuryProlific Fury. This is why we want to target to be in Berserking as much as possible. To do this we can Critically Strike an enemy with Combat Lunging StrikeCombat Lunging Strike, use our War CryWar Cry which will be on a relatively short Cooldown because of our paragon and Bold Chieftain's AspectBold Chieftain’s Aspect. We can also instantly go into a state of Berserking by using Wrath of the BerserkerWrath of the Berserker. With all of these options available to you, staying in a state of Berserking should be relatively easy.


The defensive mechanics on this build focus around several elements:

  1. Foritification
    • We gain Fortification as we spend Fury and this will continually stack as you use channel WhirlwindWhirlwind
  2. Bleeding Enemies and Iron Blood AspectIron Blood Aspect.
  3. Challenging ShoutChallenging Shout
    • This shout offers us a 40% Damage Reduction and should cycle through its Cooldown quite quickly.

Gear Choice and Stat Priority

As you begin to farm in World Tier 3 and 4, Rare and Legendary item drops will begin to appear with some regularity depending on your luck. We recommend saving the targeted Legendary items that have the needed Legendary aspects listed below. We also recommended to keep multiple copies of the build’s Aspects in your Stash for future upgrades.

As for the Rare items, you will need to inspect each one for targeted affixes for use in each specific slot and do your best to match the recommended rolls. We have listed our targeted affixes in order of importance. Check the chart below and make note of what affixes you are searching for when you see a Rare gear piece drop.

Gear SlotTargeted Affixes
Helm1. Cooldown Reduction
2. Total Armor
3. Maximum Life
4. Strength
5. Damage while Berserking
Chest1. Damage Reduction
2. Damage Reduction from Close Enemies
3. Damage Reduction while Fortified
4. Maximum Life
5. Strength
Gloves1. Critical Strike Chance
2. Ranks of WhirlwindWhirlwind
3. Attack Speed
4. Strength
5. Critical Strike Chance Against Injured Enemies
Pants1. Damage Reduction
2. Damage Reduction from Close Enemies
3. Damage Reduction while Injured
4. Damage Reduction while Fortified
5. Maximum Life
6. Strength
Boots1. Movement Speed
2. Damage Reduction while Injured
3. Fury Cost Reduction
4. Strength
5. Movement Speed for 4 seconds After Killing an Elite
Amulet1. Cooldown Reduction
2. Ranks of No MercyNo Mercy
3. Damage Reduction while Injured
4. Fury Cost Reduction
5. Movement Speed
Rings1. Critical Strike Chance
2. Vulnerable Damage
3. Resource Generation
4. Critical Strike Damage
5. Damage to Close Enemies
6. Damage while Berserking
Weapons1. Vulnerable Damage
2. Critical Strike Damage
3. Strength
4. Damage to Close Enemies
5. Damage to Bleeding Enemies
6. All Stats

Please note that these affixes are the recommended picks for this build, but that is simply our opinion. Other affixes could certainly work instead of the ones listed above, but may not be optimal. Also, there are several very specific affixes that are required to make the build work, they are as follows:

  • Critical Strike Chance
  • Rank ups to selected Skills
  • Berserking Increases – damage and duration
  • Fury Cost Reduction

A final point on acquiring the right Affixes and Legendary Aspects, use your Obols to target farm them. Obols are awarded from many different activities in the game, you will always stockpiling them until you hit your maximum. Instead of just randomly spending them on a random pick, use them to target what you might be missing from this build. It is a great way to target a specific slot of loot and find what you need.

If you are interested in checking out a new tool for gambling Obols check out this link below from Icy Veins.

Obol Gambling Optimization Tool

Legendary Aspects

Listed below are all the best-in-slot Aspects found on Legendary items that are important for the Whirlwind Barbarian build. Aspects from the Codex of Power can be used if you cannot find the proper Legendary drops, but they have weaker effects. Extract Aspects from lower level Legendary items and imprint them onto better Rare items with preferred stats. The endgame itemization goal will be to imprint Aspects with the best values Ancestral Rare items with Item Power above or as close to 800, then upgrade them through the Blacksmith. Each aspect is listed with its matching gear slot. Do your best to keep each aspect in the slot it was posted with.

Gear SlotLegendary AspectLegendary Aspect Power
HelmAspect of Grasping WhirlwindAspect of Grasping WhirlwindWhirlwind periodically Pulls enemies to you.
ChestAspect of DisobedienceAspect of DisobedienceYou gain [0.25-0.50%] increased Armor for 4 seconds when you deal any form of damage, stacking up to [15.00-30.00%].
GlovesAspect 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%. 
PantsIron Blood AspectIron Blood AspectGain [2.0-4.0%] Damage Reduction for each Nearby Bleeding enemy up to [10-20%] maximum.
BootsGhostwalker AspectGhostwalker AspectWhile Unstoppable and for 4 seconds after, you gain [10- 25%] increased Movement Speed and can move freely through enemies.
Amulets(50% bonus)Aspect of Berserk RippingAspect of Berserk RippingWhenever you deal direct damage while Berserking, inflict [20-30%] of the Base damage dealt as additional Bleeding damage over 5 seconds.
RingAspect of Echoing FuryAspect of Echoing FuryYour Shout Skills generate [2.0-4.0] Fury per second while active.
RingBold Chieftain's AspectBold Chieftain’s AspectWhenever you cast a Shout Skill, its Cooldown is reduced by [1.0-1.9] seconds per Nearby enemy, up to a maximum of 6 seconds.
Bludgeoning Weapon (200% bonus)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.
Slashing Weapon (200% bonus)Aspect of the Dire WhirlwindAspect of the Dire WhirlwindWhirlwind’s Critical Strike Chance is increased by [3-8%] for each second it is channeled, up to [9-24%].
Dual-Wield Weapon 1Aspect of Limitless RageAspect of Limitless RageEach point of Fury you generate while at Maximum Fury grants your next Core Skill [1-2%] increased damage, up to [15-30%].
Dual-Wield Weapon 2Dust Devil's AspectDust Devil’s AspectWhirlwind leaves behind Dust Devils that deal [X] damage to surrounding enemies.


Listed below are the best gems to socket into gear for each slot type.

Elixirs and Health Pots

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. Use an Elixir providing any Resistance you need most, or the Assault ElixirAssault Elixir to increase Attack Speed.

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.


  • September 6th, 2023: New format and updates
  • August 2nd, 2023: Patch 1.1.1 section added with build specific changes.
  • July 20, 2023: Guide updated for Season 1.
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