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Even though I had a lot of hope for the Barbarian in Diablo IV. It ended up being my least-liked class during the early access beta. It is however the class I spent the most time playing as I learned the game and its many different aspects of it.
Early on I went and invested every single point into maxing out a single main skill before moving on to another. I ended up maxing out Frenzy first including all its bonuses for it. Early on that felt like a powerful thing to do.
Much later on I ended up realizing that was not perhaps the best way to go at it. Sure if I was level 100 and had lots of points I would be maxing out everything I could.
After thinking about it a little it seemed best to just put one of five points into the skill you want. Then take the next node to upgrade it. At the end of each branch, you then have a choice to make as you can only pick one or the other option.
I got to say I kind of was not feeling it for any of my first options. I also did not get an idea of how I wanted to spend my skill points till a bit later on. I mostly went with frenzy since it seemed like something fast to use for generating resources. For each class, the first part of the tree skills to generate their needed resources such as fury to use higher damage-dealing skills.
Unlike the other two classes I played. They did not lose their resources over time as they would generate them instead. The barbarian would lose fury over time even if you don’t use it. This felt like it put it quite far behind the other classes.
The barbarian is also perhaps one of the more confusing classes in terms of weapons. You can see here as I’m checking out some magic rarity loot I got. That the barbarian has 4 weapon slots. Different skill types end up using different weapons.
In a single fight, my barbarian might have ended up using all four weapons he had. So it ends up being quite important later on to pay attention to what kinds of weapons I was choosing to use.
Unlike the other classes, there was also something else quite different. The barbarian you gain weapon experience. Each weapon type as you level it up also grants different types of bonuses. This was perhaps why I felt my barbarian was a bit light on the damage. As he had quite a low weapon experience. It was also always a struggle to have enough fury for what I wanted to do.
While Diablo IV has a nice world we got to explore some of it. You know I’m all about those dungeons and there are quite a few of them. While some might be as short as a single room others you might be spending 20 minutes to clear.
At the end of each dungeon was a boss fight. For the barbarian I did not feel clearing the dungeon was his biggest struggle. Granted it was a lot slower than the other classes.
Since I did not have a lot of damage on the barbarian he struggled to get boss fights into the next stage to get health potion drops. Which you get when you cross certain these holds indicated by the red arrows on the health bar.
This kept me rather on edge. You would think the barbarian would not be the one running out of health potions. For being a melee class he sucked at taking a hit with the skills and armor I had at least.
After checking out the town for a bit I was off to explore the world again. I ended up picking up the main quest and some side quests as well. Along the way, I even ran into some events and did them with other players. I’ll be covering events in a later post.
There ended up being a lot more to do in the wild than I was expecting. You can even go around harvesting resources like herbs, run into a goblin, a rare creature, or just find some elite to gank. It even helped to uncover an area just to see what was viewable as being shown on the map.
Despite all the dungeons I ran and all the monsters I slayed. The barbarian ended up being quite a disappointment. At first, I had no idea just how much of a disappointment it was since I had yet to play the other classes. They blew it out of the water and left the barbarian behind to rot away.
This became quite apparent to me once I started to unlock the whirlwind skill and had it maxed out with a further two nodes behind it. Since it made more sense to hold using it till I had full fury there was a lot of trash clearing I was having to do without it. Slowly I down quite a lot.
It is also quite slow-moving for its base speed. So you are stuck sometimes with creatures moving out of your way evading all damage. As such it was not worthwhile using it just to travel around with so once everything is dead if you managed to kill everything before you ran out of fury there was no point in spinning further. You might as well stop and hope all your fury is not gone as it slowly drains away while you try and find some other creatures.
The damage also kind of sucked. Other classes when I got up to this part of the tree were just popping creatures left and right. I on the other hand was just spinning, spinning some more, and finally spinning like a loading video icon. Waiting for things to finally be dead. Thank goodness it did not make the dial-up sound as it did.
You also had to kill quite a few monsters just to have a full bar of fury. What was left more or less was not worth using whirlwind to take out. Making it feel even worse.
The range of whirlwind was just not enough to be that useful either. If it's going to be this bad you would at least expect it to have double or triple the distance of area damage. I wanted this to work so instead of resetting my skill points which you could do in early access beta. I stuck with it.
It did not matter that I was always using the best weapon I could get for that slot for the whirlwind. It did not matter I spent loads of gold at the blacksmith further increasing the weapon's output. It was just not doing it for me.
One thing I did not find that perhaps would have made all the difference in the world was a legend that did something for the whirlwind. I can only hope there is something insane out there that takes this skill up to where it needs to be. Otherwise, I’d stay scrap it. It just kept being a disappointment.
By the time I made it up to Lilth’s Lament which is where the main storyline shortly ends as far as early access beta goes. I was not even sure I could kill the boss. I ended up failing a couple of times and barely got it in the end.
It’s also not like I just needed to go out and level up some more. Unless you enter into an area you are way under level for. It will just keep scaling up to match you. So if I would have gone to the max level for early access beta 25 I would not be shocked that Lilth’s Lament would have been at that level unless it's capped at something lower.
After that, I did go on to play the barbarian to level 20. I wanted to at least make sure I had one character hit that level for the beta special pet you get on release. After that, I was done and ready for a different class.
At least one nice thing is the next class I played the sorcerer I ended up chucking lots of random gear and weapons into my stash which ended up being shared. The sorcerer also ended up being hands down my most enjoyed class playing during early access beta. That post will be coming out soon.
As far as the barbarian I’m sure one day perhaps when the game is released and everything gets wiped I’ll try it again. Unless they make changes to Whirlwind I doubt I’ll even go near it unless there is some amazing gear that makes up for its drawbacks. It simply got outclasses by the two other classes I could play.
If they do make some changes to the barbarian perhaps they will make it take damage better or give it more damage. The sorcerer while I don’t think could go toe to toe with it for tanking felt a lot more sturdy granted that is where I spent some points on it as well.
- Diablo IV Early Access Beta | Taking A Look At Different Systems
- Diablo IV Early Access Beta | The Early Madness