Spirit of Barbs

I can’t help but like it, even if it’s not meta. Anyone else using it right now? If so, what builds could it be good for?

Werewolf for sure, werebear if u wish and for summoner for Your bear and wolves ;

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Great ideas! Also, what I love about spirit of barbs is that it’s a lot harder to kill than the other spirits

Does anyone know if Spirit of Barbs aura stack with thorn aura from merc a2?

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They stack, but on hell difficulty the damage is negliible because every mob has 50 % physical resist by default. You need a consistent source of amplify damage such as atmas scarab or a lacerator throwing axe for a thorns build to work.

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What if I’m going a summoning caster build? Right now I’m using the Act 3 fire merc. I like the enchant it improves attack rating and adds fire damage to my minions

I wonder how A2 merc with thorns + spirit of barbs would be with a summoning build

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It’s quite viable if you want to make it work. But, with a druid, it’s a difficult approach. On normal and nightmare thorns auras and effects are brutally effective. However, once you reach the hell difficulty, everything has a 50% resistance to physical damage even for non immunes. Given the high health pools as well, Thorns will eventually kill any physical attacker, but it’s so sub-optimal in terms of time that there are just better strategies.

It works very well with a necromancer because they have the amplify damage curse that lowers physical resistance by 100%. This means the monster’s protection is stripped away and dropped another 50% extra below zero restoring the power of thorns. Unless the monster is immune to physical by default. Also, a necromancer can have 10+ skeletons, 10+ mages, a golem and 1 to 20 revives with this strategy.

This is opposed to the druid’s spirit, 1 bear, 8 wolves, and 1 vine. You could make it work as a supplemental option if you wanted to use a weapon that casts amplify damage on striking. The best options are the lacerator throwing Axe or putting Atma’s scarab into your amulet slot. But, short of that it’s mediocre supplemental damage at best.

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Would a physical sunder charm work for a summoning druid, and also for spirit of barbs?

And so, with the other things you guys mentioned, then you’re better off with Heart of Wolverine

yes sunder works.

the thing is, you need amplify damage to make spirit of barbs even fun viable.

so as a summoner you would likely pick up a metal grid for the iron golem, and build that iron golem out of an Edge runeword, pretty cheap tbqh. Bramble + Edge would be a good option for you to wear if not interested in the iron golem, and werewolf can make use of Edge bows. So if you went summon/wolfy you could also go rabies maybe since bramble.

but Barbs is kind useless past NM even with Amp damage since it’s a base reflect and not a percentage. The reason why Iron Maiden and Thorns do well through hell is because bosses do 4x damage to summons and that is increased by amp damage and the IM/Thorns percentage damage reflect.

Another thing you could do is run Act 5 merc with Azurewrath or Lawbringer, this would strip away a lot of physical resist like Amplify Damage does.

But do i really see Spirit of Barbs being good enough to be enjoyable and not frustrating beyond NM mode? No, not even with the best gear.

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Summoning druid with A5 decked out merc should be cool with Wolverine and some left points into werewolf with high cb ; so far, thorn aura merc with reaper roll seems to be better than might so far

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Iron golem with no synergies is garbage.

Bows cant be made into iron golems.

Thorns/spirit of barbs/whatever can work but it works a lot better in areas like the cow level (lots and lots of melee attackers) or chaos against extra strong extra fast cursed mobs. Lord de seis and his minions melt against thorns when your minions are amped.

Unofrtunately yeah without amp damage the build suffers.


That’s fair points from you all. I decided to make a hardcore ladder toon. I’m on nightmare now. My new druid sticks with spirit of life ^^