Season 27 notes for Barbs

I’ve put updates for S27 in the OP for all the guides I’ve written, and notes in the threads for the others.

Starting tonight I’m going to be AFK for a few weeks and not able to answer any questions, I wish everybody the best of luck in Season 27!


Keep your head down! Thanks for all the timely updates.

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It’s interesting reading this thread now, seems that everyone is using the Hota power instead of ww power for lon hota.

Nice to see that there are still a few people hanging around here.

An update on this:

Raekor and LoD HotA are currently neck-and-neck for the top spot. By adjusted clear, LoD HotA is a hair ahead, 153.8 to Raekor’s 153.6. And by fastest actual clear, Raekor has a slight lead, a 6:23 GR 150, compared to 6:55 for LoD HotA (both clears done with virtually the same paragon, about 8.7k).

And, for reference, IK is at 151.6 adjusted, a 13:47 GR 150 clear with about 4k paragon by (who else?) 엔류.

I’ll be interested to see which build is on top when the season wraps up!

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Update: Raekor is currently clobbering HotA on adjusted clear, pretty much a full tier ahead (154.6 vs 153.6).

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Charge and Toss to win!

Reakor is gimmicky and completely opposite of the HOTA experience. I think Ive spent 100000x more time playing HOTA this season. Why? It’s much more fun to most people. Also, a lot of these rankings are being determined about how fast the build moves. At some point they all pretty much do the same damage range. Basically it boils down on how quickly they can transverse the map and collect mobs.


Well yeah. That’s always part of our assessment of a build’s power. The overall “equation” for a build’s total power is something like:

“Flat” damage * aoe potential * ability to move around * ability to group mobs.

Bell Monk does an absolutely insane amount of damage this season. But if you were glued to one spot, and couldn’t move around at all, it would be a terrible build, and you wouldn’t even be able to clear GR 1.

I’ve really never understood this argument. And I’ve heard it many times, especially about Rend Barb:

“Rend isn’t actually a strong build, it’s just good at gathering mobs.”

But, that’s kind of like looking at a guy who can bench press 700 lbs, and saying “well, he’s not actually strong- he just has strong arms”.

Somehow it would be nice if # of keys were tracked for the attempt. Make a tournament mode or something? A 156 clear that takes 1400 keys shouldnt count the same as something that can be repeatable with just a gg map or two on a more stable set.

Well, all that would do would be to make builds with higher single-target damage have some sort of extra baked-in advantage.

Like, clear 140 with Frenzy–> counts as a 140, but clear 140 with Leapquake–> counts as a 138…?

That doesn’t make any sense. You really don’t want perverse disincentives to target determination.

It’s already easier to clear GR X, using less keys, with Frenzy than with Leapquake, or with (pre-nerf) Fire Inna than with LoD WoL Bells. They don’t need an additional award piled on top.

Imagine some athlete who finally makes it to the olympics, after years of failed attempts. Their coach tells the organizers, “yeah, they worked really hard to get here”.

And the organizers are like “Really hard, eh?” and then kick the guy out of the competition.

In a race one athlete doesn’t get 100 tries & the other 3. That’s what a lot of these clears are. Sheer luck combined with stacking the odds in your favor. Its like letting the racer pick the venue, his opponents, what shoes they all wear, who gets steriods, who gets laxative (jk), etc.

Sure, but it’s the exact same story for the HotA clears. And, y’know, for every other build in the game.

It’s not like when you play Raekor, you’re allowed to spend 100 or 1000 keys and with HotA you’re only allowed to spend 3.

In fact, if you want to talk about total keys spent, I’m sure HotA has received at least 10x (the actual number is probably closer to 1000x) as many keys plugged in, across all players, as Raekor. Because, as you’ve pointed out, a lot more people are playing HotA seriously. (There are more than 10x as many HotA 150s - 418- as Raekor 150s - 31).

And that means there is a lot more total opportunity for somebody to get that absolutely perfect dream rift and that ludicrously fast clear. But: despite that significant advantage to HotA, Raekor is still ahead.

Besides, it’s not as though people going for a high rank with HotA aren’t spending a lot of keys. I think Baskenater, one of the first 150s on the board, said he’d spent about 1200 keys to get the clear. How many keys did Lebron spend to get his 6:51 with Raekor? I dunno. Go ask him, if you’re curious, and if you get an answer, let me know- I’m curious too. Otherwise, I mean, we can speculate, but a) that’s just speculation and b) “keys spent” is a really volatile measurement.

I spent something like 2500 keys getting 138 down with Leapquake, then about 100 keys to get 139, and only maybe 50 or so to get my recent 140. Which of those numbers is meaningful? Hard to tell. So a “key counter” system applied to our clears seems like it would be unpractical and uninformative.

Anyway, yes, some builds are more consistent than others. As I said, most of that comes down to good single-target damage.

For an “elite hunter” build, a good player will be able to succeed at 90+% of rifts that are 5-6 tiers below their peak. For instance, my Frenzy peak is 138, and I can do 10 132s in a row with no fails. Other build that follow this pattern would be Fire Inna, Impale, etc.

For a “super density clearing” build, with terrible single target, a good player will probably hit that 90+% mark more like 10-12 tiers below their peak. This is what you can expect to see from builds like Leapquake, Mundunugu, etc.

And there are also plenty of builds in-between those two other types, that are maybe more density-focused, but also have a way of shortening the boss fight (like using WW, with HotA). And here you’ll probably see 90+% success maybe 7 or 8 tiers below peak.

We already know where all builds fit in that picture. For Barbs, it’s:

Elite Hunter (90+% success 5-6 tiers below peak)
H90 Frenzy

Middle (90+% success 7-8 tiers below peak)
LoD HotA
Raekor Boulder

Density Clearing (90+% success 10-12 tiers below peak)
MOTE Leapquake
Wastes Rend
IK6R4 Vile Charge

Anyway, consistency is its own virtue, but I wouldn’t conflate that with peak push strength. If you want to cross reference this set of “spreads” against peak performance, go right ahead.


You know, that Raekor clear by Lebron is without a doubt the highest, strongest clear ever accomplished with a Barb build. I checked, and it is miles ahead of anything accomplished in either season 24 (ethereals) or season 25 (soul shards).

It’s too bad you’re not more excited about that, because there are several elements of the build used to execute that clear that trace directly back to you.

For one thing, in the Raekor set itself, the “1 stack per enemy hit”, which freed us all from the misery of wall-charging, comes from something you said here, which I repeated basically every chance I got, because it was an excellent idea.

And for another thing, this particular version of Raekor uses a defensive setup that as far as I know was first invented by you, and mentioned here. I talked about this a little bit on Wudi’s stream while he was pushing for his Raekor/WW 150, and shortly thereafter it started showing up all over the leaderboards. I obviously can’t say for sure that’s how it came about, but it does seem pretty certain that you were the first person to try out that setup and write about it.

I think clears like that will get reakor nerfed. Its so good because its super fast compared to hota. Plus reakor was alreadygood vs bosses. Hota is chopping down trees slow.

Why is bell monk so op? Its the cooldown pylon. They navigate the map lightning fast. Is it more powerful than soul shard monk? No. Its faster. I could do 150s with less than half the paragon.

I think your metric is good but could use tweaks.

Wait, what? I think you need to clarify here. I could swear you were making the exact opposite argument over in the “Bell Monk is Ridiculous” thread the other day.

Anyway, why would one build be much faster than the other, in the sense that you mean? They both use Dashing Strike, which is the best movement skill in the game, and, yes, can cast it at lightning speed with a Channeling pylon.

As for Raekor getting nerfed… well, I mean, the top Raekor clear in season 27 would still be only 1192nd place on the Monk board, or 3rd place for Wizard, or 1st, by a small margin, for Necromancer.

So, if you’re going by “where is the clear in the leaderboard top 1000 for the season”, the answer is: not anywhere.

Or if you’re discounting season themes and just looking at the build’s normal power, it’s comparable to Trag and a little weaker than Tal (I took a quick look and noted that Tal has broken adjusted 153 in non-season).

Raekor’s not the strongest build in this season. It’s not the strongest build in this era. It’s a good-but-not-great solo XP build. It’s a mediocre T16 build. It has no role in the group meta in either season or non-season. So nerfing it really wouldn’t make any sense.

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S25 monk was limited by shenlong uptime. To keep it up you needed to be stationary maintaining spirit. Less mobilty = slower clear times.

I think gr150 cap is the problem. A few more tiers would let the cream rise to the top.

I wanted to double check these ranges I gave again, and it had been a while since I had played any “10-in-a-rows”.

So I first did 10 consecutive Frenzy 133s, which was a bit challenging but didn’t give me any significant issues. Considering the bad Area Damage scaling of Frenzy, though, I doubt I could do 10 134s.

Then I did 10 Leapquake 130s, which ended up being pretty easy- the least amount of extra time I finished with was about 3’30". Then I did 10 131s, which was definitely harder- on the second to last run I finished with only 10 seconds remaining. I moved on to 132s, and finished 3 runs before failing on the 4th, missing by about 5 seconds.

So, my actual recorded “spread” between peak clear and 90+% clearance rate is 5 tiers for Frenzy (133 → 138) and 9 tiers for Leapquake (131 → 140).

Though in reality, is probably more like 10 after all for Leapquake. I am really not sure I can do 139 with Frenzy. But I am pretty sure I can do 141 with Leapquake…

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Im more about same tier comparisons. Impale strafe dh for instance. Can literally do any map, fight any mob types & mow down the boss np. Up to gr140 they are very competitive if not better than a hota barb. But they hit a ceiling & hota keeps getting stronger. Obviously lod hota is in a different class. That’s how i see some builds like savages. Steady as a rock but low ceiling.

For 150s its different. I vastly prefer less fishy builds. Most of my clears i can repeat on a decent map. I digress though. I just think ratings should include how many keys it takes. Somehow. Not sure howd you track it though. Honor system? Lol

You don’t.

For one thing, there’s no way to do that, and for another, it’s basically pointless because you already know the answer.

Unless you mean: how many keys did a specific clear take, in which case the answer doesn’t really mean anything, because it’s too volatile. You might clear GR X in 1000 keys, and then GR X+1 in 100 keys, but that doesn’t mean that GR X+1 is easier, or that you somehow magically became more powerful over the course of those 100 keys- it’s just luck.

Measuring something like this is only meaningful over a huge number of keys spent on a huge number of clears.

What you’re looking for is something like a “consistency rating” for builds. Well, here you go:

Consistency Ratings for Barb Builds

H90 Frenzy

LoD HotA
MOTE Seismic Slam
Raekor Boulder Toss

Wastes Rend
MOTE Leapquake
Vile Charge

It’s the same little chart I made for you before, just with a different name! My point is: we already know the answer to this question.

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Maybe D4 will have better trackable stats