Screenshot by Gamepur

Dark and Darker Barbarian class build guide

Fear is for the lesser classes.

Some classes in Dark and Darker may have nuance and deft touches that requires thoughtful strategy — the Barbarian is not one of these. Barbarians tend to carry the largest weapons they can find in the dungeons, yell often with their skills, and crush anything that dares to look at them twice. With the largest health pool of all classes by a significant margin, and the only class with a skill offering health regeneration after killing a player, the well-played Barbarian is a terrifying menace in groups, or by themselves. Here’s our ideal Barbarian build guide for Dark and Darker.

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Related: The best solo classes in Dark and Darker

Note: this guide is updated for the current alpha playtest.

Best Barbarian perks in Dark and Darker

While some classes, such as the Rogue, may benefit from cautious planning of ambushes, the Barbarian simply doesn’t care. Smashing open doors and boldly strutting down hallways while cleaving everything in their path is the Barbarian way, so players will want to opt for their perks to naturally benefit from this. In groups, Barbarians tend to be front-liners along with Fighters, thanks to their massive health pool. Try these perks, in order:

  • Savage
    • Savage gives players an additional 10% damage if they aren’t wearing chest armor. This is an easy pick if you’re playing with a group that offers a Cleric to help touch up any lost health during a melee, but it works well in solo play if you’re only going in with your default kit.
  • Axe Specialization
    • If you’re using an Axe, you get an additional 10 raw damage added to your attacks. This means that Barbarians tend to be stuck with Axes, as swords simply cannot offer that same value until the High Roller dungeon. However, it also means that your starting weapon Battle Axe does 45 damage per swing — the highest base damage in-game.
  • Carnage
    • Carnage can be a difficult skill to play around, so user beware. Carnage increases your strength by 10, for 7 seconds, for each kill. With the ability to cleave, this can very quickly turn the Barbarian into a room-clearing nightmare, but planning and strategy is necessary to maximize its impact. Long story short, kill the smaller things first.
  • Morale Boost/Smash
    • If you’re focusing on PvP, Morale Boost will regenerate 12% health after killing a player. As long as you hit your swings, you should be able to out-damage anyone else on the map, but this won’t proc until after you kill an enemy player. If that’s too a spicy caveat, Smash will let you quickly burst through most wooden doors in the game with a swing of your weapon, making getting around an extremely fast endeavor.
Screenshot by Gamepur

Best Barbarian gear

There’s no beating around the bush on this: equip your Barbarian with the best axe you can find to synergize with Axe Specialization, throw some leather on, and dive into dungeons. With stats, aim for Strength (for HP and attack damage) and Will for some raw magic resistance. While Barbarians can destroy most Rogues, Wizards will quickly become your bane, regardless of how severe the Wizard nerf was.

Best Barbarian skills

The Barbarian truly comes alive in PvP, and that’s why you’re going to want to maximize your PvP damage with specific skills.

  • War Cry (Party)
    • A brilliant skill that can make most fights rather unfair for your opponents. Make sure you use this skill after the fight begins, as the 25% HP buff only lasts 7 seconds. Using this before your party can close the distance, wastes it.
  • Reckless Attack
    • A Barbarian always wants Reckless Attack available to them — it ignores 75% of your enemy’s armor for your next hit. This effectively mitigates even the most Chad-like warriors in the dungeon, and it’s very obvious when your opponent has a heft of armor equipped, even in the flurry of battle.
  • Rage (Solo)
    • Rage greatly increases your strength for ‘a short duration,’ but that’s more than enough to handle most fights. The 20% defense reduction while its active is a minor note, at best — just hit them until you don’t need to worry about them hitting you anymore.

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Chris Davenport
Chris Davenport is a freelance writer for Gamepur. He's been writing video game guides for the past five years and has been featured on GameRant.