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I see a lot of people about to get into inferno asking whether it is better to go 1h and shield or 2h (or dual wield). While it is true that inferno can be successfuly soloed with either set up given good enough gear when starting out in inferno your primary limitation is going to be gold.
If you sold items on the AH while leveling and were frugal you can end up lvl 60 with around 2-4 mil gold. If you don't have that much some quick runs of act 3 towers can net you ~200k g a piece.
A basic no stats 1k dps 1h weapon costs a minimum of about ~3.5 mil gold. Early on in act 1 I bought a decent 1.2k dps 2h weapon for ~200kg with attack speed a socket and some strength (recently checked and the price is similar). This is a savings of 3.3 mil g (not counting the savings of not having to buy a shield) and a relatively significant boost in dps . For ~500k a piece you can get most armor slots filled with good rares with ~35-50 resist all and a good mix of vit/str/armor and sockets. this 3.3mil gold savings can get you a good 6-7 rare pieces of armor that will last you well into act 2 inferno.
If you didn't want to spend the 3.3 mil on a 1k dps 1 hand you can spend 500k on a 700-800 pure dps 1h or 1 mil on an 800 dps 1h with stats. still a 3-800k savings with a much more significant boost in dps.
I started inferno act 1 with a 1h and shield and farmed some decent rares doing butcher runs. When I had difficulty starting act 2 inferno I decided to try selling my 1h/shield and buying a 2h and upgrading some armor pieces. My stats using only the gold from selling my 1h and shield changed as follows
~200 resist all
EDIT: Block chance ~24% for 2k-2.8k
~600 resist all
I am now progressing in act 2 inferno just fine with my 2h. I believe early on this is a much more gold efficient way to progress through early inferno. My current mitigation stats/effective hp is higher than before and my dps is nearly doubled.
Long story short (tl; dr) Early on in inferno with limited gold 1h/shield vs 2h is not a choice of mitigation vs dps It is a comparison of cost efficiency where I believe 2h is more cost efficient by a wide margin. Hopefully this can be helpful to some people starting out in inferno.
On a side note I believe dual wield to be the least efficient since 1h weapons are significantly less gold efficient than 2h weapons buying two decent 1h weapons is the least efficient choice by far. Also I plan on getting buying a good 2 good 1h/ keeping good 1h drops and a good shield since I find both 1h/shield and dual wield to be very fun play styles, but I will play 2h as long as it continues to allow me to progress most efficiently.
Edited by Joqer#1749 on 5/31/2012 1:18 PM PDT
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