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Diablo 4 Character Classes for Builds
Image via Blizzard Entertainment

Diablo 4: How to Make a Build

Dive into the meta by crafting your own build in Diablo 4!

Diablo 4 features five distinctive classes—Barbarian, Sorcerer, Rogue, Druid, and Necromancer—that act as a starting point for your unique build. But with so many abilities, spells, perks, and passives to select from, learning how to make a build in Diablo 4 can feel more like rocket science than gaming logic. What skills mesh well together? Which passives work best for the end game? Here’s how to make your first build in Diablo 4.

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Learning to Make a Build in Diablo 4

Every class in the game has access to up to 25 skills in their tree. These unlock attacks, spells, and abilities that fill up the active skill slot bar for use during combat. Many focus on dealing damage to clear mobs, while some provide buffs to attack damage, health, and dodge chances.

To craft a build in Diablo 4, you must pair these skills and abilities with the appropriate passives from the Paragon Board, alongside crucial items, like Legendaries, to withstand the end game.

Choosing a Basic Skill

Screenshot by Prima Games

The first step in any functional build is to choose a basic skill. Your basic skill is your starting attack, and it’s the primary way to deal damage to mobs while also generating your key resource.

While weaker than core skills, your basic skill is free to use. It’s okay for clearing small mobs or weaker enemies in the game. But to rely on a basic skill to tackle a boss may prove fatal.

A good rule of thumb when choosing a basic skill is to focus on a keyword that your build heavily relies on. For example, with the Rogue, it’s wise to concentrate on Vulnerable, which leaves enemies open to additional damage with every attack. There are basic and core skills that implement the Vulnerable debuff on affected enemies, which can help you clear droves of hellions with ease.

That’s a big part of build crafting in Diablo 4. You should always be thinking ahead!

Choosing a Core Skill

Screenshot by Prima Games

While it’s entirely possible to select multiple core skills from the tree, and some players do utilize this method, it’s often more cost-effective and efficient to focus on one core skill. It requires your class’ resources to function, and trying to pop more than one core skill can leave you without any resources for a follow-up attack.

Furthermore, your core skill is your starting point. It’s the basis for any build and will serve you well into the end game in Diablo 4. For a Barbarian, you may opt for Whirlwind, a popular Barbarian build in Diablo. But for a Sorcerer, you may choose Incinerate or Chain Lighting. These are both powerful spells that can clear entire mobs with relative ease. They also offer opportunities to buff additional skills, like with Chain Lightning’s Crackling Energy.

Related: How to Equip the Wolf Pup in Diablo 4

Utilize Your Keywords

Screenshot by Prima Games

You’ll note a section for keywords on the top right-hand side of the skill tree. Open this section, and a selection of keyword status effects greets you. These include but are not limited to:

  • Critical Strikes
  • Crowd Control
  • Dodge
  • Daze
  • Healing
  • Lucky Hit
  • Trap
  • Vulnerable
  • Unstoppable
  • Energy

These status effects can buff your build or debuff enemies. Using the previous example of Crackling Energy on a Sorcerer build, selecting abilities with the Crackling Energy keyword will increase the chance of one forming after every Critical Strike. These balls of energy do additional damage to enemies, thereby making your job of clearing mobs easier.

The thing about the keyword box, however, is that it is class-specific. You won’t see Crackling Energy in the Rogue keyword section.

Keep Theorycrafting and Building

The key takeaway from our how to make a build in Diablo 4 guide is that this process is ongoing. You start with the basics—basic and core skills—and then find keywords corresponding to your playstyle and desires. Whether you want to focus on tanking hits as a Barbarian, becoming a glass cannon as a Sorcerer, or wiping entire mobs as a Werebear Druid, it all begins with a few choice skills and keywords.

Don’t be afraid to experiment once you’ve locked down the basics. You can also respec your build and try something new and unique. Or, you can push forward and start focusing on gear. Then, at level 50, you unlock the passive skill tree to enhance your class build further.

If this guide helped you start crafting your first build in Diablo 4, stop by Prima Games more often for pieces like Diablo 4: Shifting City Dungeon Location and Guide!

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Brandon Morgan
Brandon began writing in 2012, for websites such as OnlySP, before transitioning to digital marketing in 2016 to learn the ins and outs of SEO. In mid-2023, Brandon returned to write strategy guides for Prima Games, IGN, DualShockers, and more, with a focus on ARPGs, RPGs, and Survival games. His past coverage includes Cyberpunk 2077: Phantom Liberty, Starfield, Skull and Bones, and many more!