Hello, my dear fellows!

Are you looking for a decent Marauder Melee Build? But, oh. You are new player and don’t understand game’s mechanics, you don’t know what’s needed in the game nor which skill are those coolest?

Let me present you basic marauder build – well known (for CB-players) cookie-cutter:
– All equipment pieces you need are strenght-type! You won’t bother about Dexternity nor Intelligence for a single while!
– Even all your gems require red-sockets that are easiest to get on strenght-type equipment!
– You will NEVER miss, what strongly affects you damage output!
– Your defense is your health regen, which you easly can increase to 200 health PER SECOND (500 is viable too, but it’s way hard).
– Such enormous health regen makes you very-very tanky! HC builds are very often based on it!
– Your tankyness does not affect damage much! You are using high-damage two-handed weapon, what with addition of few strong passive nodes and support gem will make you 1-hit-ko blues without much efford!
– ALL gems we need we will get from quests!
– You won’t care about mana. Well at some point you will stop using potions!
– You won’t be stunned. Ever. We hate stunlocks (like those in d2, don’t we?)
– You start with high base resistances, what really help early on, when you don’t get game much!

How to do that? Just follow following (sic!) skilltree:


Resolute Technique – 19 Points <<<CLICK ME>>>Blood Magic – 27 Points <<<CLICK ME>>>

34 Points, Get Lightning Resistance nodes just before Vaal. Cold Resistances just before Merevil (cruel)<<<CLICK ME>>>

Duelist’s Health Nodes – 48 Points <<<CLICK ME>>>

Endurance Charges – 52 Points <<<CLICK ME>>>

Some damage nodes – 59 Points <<<CLICK ME>>>

Heading for Templar’s Health & Unwavering Stance (take it only, when you will notice that you are being stunned by critters – 71 Points <<<CLICK ME>>>

Templar’s health Nodes, Amplify & Elemental Adapation (take it only, if you reached resist’s cap in Merciless) – 84 Points <<<CLICK ME>>>


Note. This is NOT LOW DAMAGE BUILD. We TAKE A LOT DAMAGE nodes. You can even drop some of them, because they are unimportant.
Note. Yes. You will need those resistances.
Note. DON’T create 111 POINTS build, because it is STUPID!!! You need to finish your build with Merciless difficulty – about 80 points. Level which you will probaly reach is ~70 which gives us 90 points. There is no point, scetching later build!

1. Don’t take Damage Nodes early on. We are rushing for Duelist’s Health Nodes.
2. Go for Resolute Technique. This Keystone will enormously increase your damage output (as hit chance is also calculated in it)
3. Then you should get is Blood Magic – to screw mana issues as fast as possible
4. Then you should make your way to Duelist’s Health Nodes, through Unwavering Stance to improve your survivabilty. Note, that you don’t have to take Unwavering Stance so early.
5. Get Endurance Charges nodes.
6. Get Elemental Adaptaion only in MERCILESS DIFFICULTY and only if you have MAXED RESISTS

You can also drop Smasing Blows, to make you way to Duelist’s Health Points faster. I did. <<<CLICK ME>>>

You can drop also Unwavering Stance, because with so high health pool, only rares/bosses should be able to stun you <<<CLICK ME>>>


With this guide you will need just two skill gems with supporting them support (sic!) gems. What is more: all of them you will get very early and from quest rewards! Those skills are most often used in melee builds.

Let me point, that all those skills require red socket – color, which is most probable for us to get.


There are two skills that you can use as a main nuker. You should level both of them, and use that what, you like more.

1. “GROUND SLAM” + “Life Gain on Hit” + “Melee Physical Damage” + “Fire Physical Damage”
It is you primary AoE attack and it is just awesome, as it is actually mid-ranged attack. This distance is undoubtedly ass-saver. Secondly with such big range you are able to hit at once much more enemies than with other melee skills. Generally you should use it in later difficulties and in dangerous situations in first one.
2. “SWEEP” + “Life Gain on Hit” + “Melee Physical Damage” + “Fire Physical Damage”
This is your secondary AoE attack is an replacement for Ground Slam – generally you might find it better only in normal act 1. Further on running into group of critters and madly sweeping equals instadeath. It is mentioned here only, due to high densit of ‘can i use sweep’ questions in the comments.
3. “LEAP SLAM” + “Life Gain on Hit” + “Melee Physical Damage” + “Fire Physical Damage”
Yer another replacement for Ground Slam. Also it does awesome against act bosses. You should keep one, and leveling it – and switch it whenever you’ll need it.

4. “HEAVY STRIKE” + “Life Gain on Hit” + “Melee Physical Damage” + “Fire Physical Damage”
This is your main 1vs1 (bosskiller) attack. I has high effectiveness, what make our one-to-one damage just huge.

This thing is awesome! This is a thing that let’s you don’t care about armor! Using Enduring Cry will buff you with “Endurance Charge”, which gives a lot physical damage reductionand elemental resistances. This buff can stack (with proper skills/equipment) up to 9, giving you enormous 45% flat physical damage reduction and elemental resistances. You will love it!


For support gems we use the same gems in both cases. They are also red, and quest-obtainable.

1. “Life Gain on Hit” – is first support gem we should apply, as it’s just big jump in survivability. We will stop spending health. We will start GAINING health for each attack. In later game you should swap it with “Life Leech” gem. When? When Life Leech overregen Life Gain on Hit. When? This calculator will show you when: Life Gain on Hit vs Life Leech
2. “Melee Physical Damage” – just for increasing damage output.
3. “Fire Physical Damage” – just for increasing damage output.


ADDITIONAL SKILL GEMS – however not required
This are gems that may be used for further improvement of our character. They are not required, however RECOMMENDED. At last some of them.

Active Skills:
1. Detonate Dead – Dexternity Based. NOT Quest Reward. Do you hate those Necro’s keep reviveing skeletons?! Remove corpses! Can be left at 1st level.
2. Blood Rage – Dexternity Based. NOT Quest Reward. If you have maxed chaos resistance, this thing is AWESOME! It grant you Life Leech AND Frenzy Charge, granting huge boost to your attack speed. Remeber! Once you have high Chaos Resistances, use Blood Rage to increase your damage output and survivablity even MORE!
1. Anger – Strength & Intelligence Based. Quest Reward. Adds some fire damage. As we do not concentrate on elemental damage, and have no nodes about it befefits form Anger are only minor.
2. Wrath – Intelligence Based. NOT Quest Reward. Adds some lightning damage. As we do not concentrate on elemental damage, and have no nodes about it befefits form Wrath are only minor.
3. Grace – Dexternity Based. Quest Reward. A MUST if you use Iron Reflexes. Well… We USE Iron Reflexes because of Grace, bacause it’s like ~1k Grace’s evasion is added to our armor for free.
1. Decoy Totem – Strength Based. Quest Reward. This is great gem creating for ass-saving purposes. Also it may be used to lure all enemies in one place, AND GROUNDSLAM THEM ALL AT ONCE!
2. Rejuvenation Totem – Strength Based. Quest Reward. Adds a lot health regen, especially on lower levels.
Curses: – you can choose only one of those. Choose one, you like more.
1. Temporal Chains – Intelligence Based. NOT Quest Reward. Defensive. Slows enemies.
2. Enfeeble – Intelligence Based. NOT Quest Reward. Defensive. Weakens Enemie’s dps.
3. Warlord’s Mark – Strength Based. Quest Reward. Defensive. Makes you Leech Life from enemies.
4. Vulnerability – Intelligence Based. Quest Reward. Offensive. MOAR DAMAGE!
Support Gems:
1. Concentrated Effect – Intelligence Based. NOT Quest Reward. If you are strong enough to don’t care about incoming damage, you can cut off some range for 1.5x damage multiplayer.
2. Increased Area of Effect – Intelligence Based. NOT Quest Reward. The other way round – if you will lack of range you can wear this support.
3. Life Leech – Strength Based. Quest Reward. Over some point, this will be better that Life Gain on Hit. Then you should swap it. More informations in SUPPORT GEMS section.
4. Faster Attacks – externity Based. NOT Quest Reward. Used to boost your damage even moar!


1. Cleave
2. Lightning Strike – This skill – although it is awesome – does not appear in our build, because it requires completely different passive skill tree, completely different equipment pieces, and completely different support gems
3. Hatred – this aura would boost your damage noticeable, but unfortunatelly it would reserve 30% of our life (decrease our maxium life by 30%). It simply does not worth it. Also it is DEX-based.
4. Vitality – this aura would increase our survivality enourmously… if only it wont require 40% of our life. Sad.
5. Purity – aura that grants free resistance would be icing of our build. But this is next aura, that requires 40% of our life.


With this build, you should use 2h-mace (with highest physical damage you’ve found).
I’ve chosen 2h-maces because of few reasons:
– Only Strength requirement
– High damage
– Easy access to high-damage passive skill nodes
– As 2h weapon it may have up to 6 sockets
– It can be used with Ground SlamIf you want use another weapon, you should swap mace-based passive skills into weapon-of-your-choice ones.

NOTE: Before you take ANY MACE node, you can use ALL weapons. Well, you can use ALL weapons, even with MACE NODES if only it gives you HIGHER DPS.


To increase our survivality (health regen) to unbelievable scores there are ONLY three things we should care about in equipment. There are arranged in order of importance:
2. HEALTH REGEN BONUSES (mainly early-on)
3. Resistances (mainly chaos!)
What else? Nothing! With this build you won’t need armor/evasion/energy shield/other strange bonuses. Of course, they will help. But they are not valid.
Also don’t look at additional amount of strength, because strength adds nearly NOTHING.

WE DO NOT USE ARMOR FOR PHYSICAL REDUCTION, BECAUSE IT IS INEFFECIVE! WE USE ENDURANCE CHARGES BECAUSE IT IS SUPER-EFFECIVE! Using pure energy shield equipment will change mothing in our build! More it was add some (negligible) survivality, because of additional energy shield pool.


NORMAL DIFFICULTY: Health – there are no skill point that will give you so huge benefits. Note, that this health is multiplied by our ‘increased health’ – resulting not in only 40 points, but over 100.
CRUEL DIFFICULTY: Physical Damage – 12% increased Physical Damage is something only few nodes (already taken) may grant to you.
MERCILES DIFFUCILTY: Endurance Charge or Skill Point – it depends on you, how often you use charges. If you use them often – Endurance Charge. If not – choose a Skill Point.


1. But u nup, ima goin’ to gonna DIE super-fazt wiht bloodz magiks!
Actually with “Life Gain on Hit” you will regain health faster than you will be able to spend it. Also with so high health regen you won’t have problems with maintaining health2. Merciless Viability
This build builds (sic!) it’s defense on mechanics that is used by HardCore Players – Health Regen. I don’t see other ways of increasing our defense, as health regen is imho best one. Note that you can’t go through Merciless with shit-gear.
I may propose getting better (more health/regen/resistance) gear, and better weapon.
Also let me mention, that ‘top-rank players’ tend to use similar builds to this one. This build IS DEFENETELY viable.

3. Enemies with Chaos Damage
Chaos Damage is generally bitch. In Closed Beta only defense against it was CI or high health pool. We have this second one. Now we can ALSO build resistances again Chaos. And this i a must. Try to keep 50-75% all resistances in each difficulty.

4. 2H vs 1H
You will probably use Kaom’s Hearth unique Armor for additional 1k base health. In such a case you’ll need piece of equipment that is possible to get six (hopefully linked) sockets. These are two-handed weapons. Also, we have to deal damage. We won’t maintain high damage with one-handed weapon.

5.Mace over other weapon types
Generally you are free to use any weapon type you want. I’ve chosen maces, because they are simple (only STR required), they have easly reachable damage nodes for our build (which should fit the damage difference between i.e. axes and maces). Note that we do not concentrate on stun thereshold and this isn’t thing we consider for mace’s superiority.

6. How does Endurance Charges work?
Endurance Cry description is a bit misleading.
You got at least 1 Endurance Charge by using Enduring Cry near enemies and additional for more then a certain amount of enemies (depending on gem level).

Lets assume you have a lvl 4 Endurance Cry (10 charges per 100 enemies):
– use near 1-9 enemies you’ll get 1 charge
– use near 10-19 enemies you’ll get 2 charges
– …

Another point is, Endurance Cry has a cooldown (just a few secs).
So after this short cooldown you can use it again and get additional charges AND refreshing charge duration!

Gameplay in late game:
Cry near first enemies -> cry again few seconds later -> and again -> and again -> …
Increased charge duration helps a lot to get to next enemy before charges are expired. So you can run/kill/smash with your max charges up and tank a ton of damage!

And you don’t want to release them! You just want to keep them! 😉


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