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Help with Crusader Hammer build

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Hi guys,

I need some help. I am mostly a duo player, play with my fiance (she is a DH) and just recently got back into Diablo 3 a little over a month ago. This is her first and so far, only game she has been willing to play, so we have been playing it nightly.

I left before right after Paragon levels were introduced, got to about 250 and stopped playing. Now that I am back, I had a lot to catch up on. Fast forward and here I am, a Crusader, trying to reach GR70 completion.

I have 3 sets nearly completed, but the one that is most complete is Deadset's Hammerdin build. I made a few replies on that thread, but it hasn't been approved, and since the last replies were from late Feb, I don't know if anyone is moderating or helping out on those anymore :(

My problem is, I hear this build can exceed into GR90s, or even much higher than I am now, but I can't seem to stay alive. The farthest I could push without extreme frustration (can't even past first blue pack at entrance to GR, with all CDs active) is level 64 GR.

Here is my current build:  https://us.battle.net/d3/en/profile/Sarvoth-1975/hero/85281633

Here it is on Diablo 3 planner: http://www.d3planner.com/357572815

What I need help with, is what I need to do to improve. Is it just that my item rolls suck? Do I need to get higher paragon (over 500 now)? Do I need to fill out in full ancients? What do I need to survive up to at least GR 70 so I can start the possibility of the primal ancient drops on my account.

The build feels squishy. I tactically use all my abilities when my HP drops. I have a potion of the bottomless to help me as well, changed my gems to all Diamonds to a mix of Ruby and Diamonds, tried re-rolling my stats as close to perfect as possible according to Deadset's guide. I feel like I am missing something, or doing something really wrong here. My indestructible will always be on CD. I can't do a level 55 GR without dying at least once.

EDIT: I know a big weakness right now is my two rings and amulet did not come with sockets, so all the enchants on those had to go to getting a socket for my legendary gems. I just haven't gotten any that could replace them yet.

I am not the greatest  at this, and so any help would be much appreciated. 



Edited by Sarvoth

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It looks like you've asked the same question both here and in the build specific thread.  I replied a few days ago, let me know if it's helpful.  


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Hello there looks like you have a good set up although id recommend switching out goldwrap belt for another belt like witching hour or something similar another thing is I see your chest piece has no socket a chest piece can have 3 sockets so you could add 3 more diamonds to your gear and I also see you are using boon of the hoarder might try switching that out for bane of stricken or pain enhancer or some other gem like mutilation guard or esoteric of alteration.

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Putting the comment from Gunthur below just in case of archiving the guide comment thread and people are seeking an answer to the question.


So, I noticed a few things that might help you.  Just for reference, my gear is in the same general range as yours- a few Ancients, no augments.  See for yourself: http://www.d3planner.com/818181088.  My paragon level (861) and legendary gems (82) are certainly higher, which is a not insignificant difference.  I'm able to do GR65 with relative ease, and have done 70.  Unless my skills improve (not bloody likely!), I think 75 would be the ceiling with this gear.  Like you, I'm not a pro at timing CoE rotations (in fact, I ignore them entirely SHAME ON ME).  I also don't use potions, because...well, maybe I should look into that.  Nonetheless, I am confident that you should be capable of GR60 without difficulty, and possibly GR65.

On to the advice:

  • You rightly point out that some of your gear rolls are not ideal, and that is certainly part of the issue.  Your damage bonuses for unused/unhelpful skills (Condemn/Slash/Falling Sword) are taking the place of buffs you would benefit from.  You might consider rerolling them in the cube, and when enchanting them, replace damage bonuses to skills you won't use (even Falling Sword, which is here purely to synergize with your armor set, Faithful Memory, and Sacred Harness) with anything else.  Even less prioritized buffs to Armor, All Resist, and even Life Regen are at least doing something to help you, no matter how small.  Your shoulders and boots are both good candidates for rerolls and enchants.  Also, I know that Weapon Dmg % is prioritized higher in the build than Cooldown Reduction for your Johanna's Argument, but in your situation I'd consider rolling that off to improve your overall CDR.  Increasing uptime for Akarat's Champion is hugely important, and quicker resets on Iron Skin will help, too. 
  • With regard to Falling Sword, make sure you're not using it too much and resettting it to a lower multiplier than what you already have; typically, if I manage to get anything 6 or better (watch the little hammer icon on the UI to see what your multiplier is), I'll avoid jumping again unless I can land on a bigger pack or I need to reset the 8 second 50% damage reduction from the (4) set bonus.  
  • This build thrives on dishing out huge amounts of damage, and doing so while utilizing an aggressive, alert style of play helps you stay alive.  The more damage you can do, the more your should be healing yourself from Life on Hit.  I like to put an Oculus Ring on my follower, and make a point to move into the circle for greater DPS.  You mentioned the Unity ring on your follower, but that will not improve your survivability unless you ditch either the OROTZ or the CoE for another Unity ring, which I would not recommend.
  • Consider replacing the passive Blunt with Holy Cause; the incoming 1% heal procs from your holy damage will help once you're GR60+.  The 1% doesn't seem like much, but every collision of every one of your many hammers is contributing.
  • In lieu of saving Iron Skin and Akarat's Champion for emergencies, I'd suggest using them as often as they're up; with this build and at these difficulties, any arrow you didn't see, explosion you were just on the edge of, or pit of nastiness you stand in too long can take you down in an eyeblink.  Increasing your CDR as suggested above will help with this.

That's all I can think of for now.  Good luck!  I'll be eager to hear how it goes.

Excellent response from him, I don't have much to add at all.

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