Diablo® III

Solo Inferno Act 4 Clear! +Some Advice

I completed Act IV Inferno on Sunday. Hurray!

My stats when I cleared it
Life: 60146
Resists: 842-962
Armor: 9641
Damage: 21655
Block Chance: 36.00
Block Amount: 3706-4704
Dodge Chance: 17.60
Life Per Hit: 773

My Build
Frenzy - Sidearm
Leap - Iron Impact
Revenge - Provocation
War Cry - Impunity
Ignore Pain - Ignorance is Bliss
Wrath of the Berserker - Insanity
Tough as Nails
Nerves of Steel
Weapon Mastery (Sword)

I didn't clear Act IV because I was exceptionally skilled at playing my Barbarian or because I discovered some crazy revolutionary build. I beat Act IV because my gear was good enough to do it. Progression at max level is entirely based on gear. This isn't exactly news and this will never change. If you're having trouble progressing, the reason is almost always going to be "you're not properly equipped for it".

Here are a few quick pointers on improving your gear quality for Barbarians looking to progress through Inferno....
Edited by Bokchoy#1328 on 6/6/2012 2:21 AM PDT
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Gearing Your Barbarian

The importance of All Resist gear is exaggerated. The notion of "You can't beat Act X unless you have Y All Resist" is one of the biggest misconceptions floating about the Barbarian community. While it's not completely untrue and while All Resist is still a very important stat, it is only one of many stats. I see a ton of Barbarians going about it the wrong way, wearing bad pieces of gear with high Resistance stats for the purpose of reaching this imaginary All Resist threshold that apparently makes Act 2 suddenly possible. This is the wrong way to go about gearing your Barbarian for Inferno.

-Instead, "Effective Health" is a concept you should be familiar with. Effective Health represents how much damage your character can sustain. Any stat that contributes to Damage Mitigation or Life will also contribute to your Effective Health. This dispels any misconception of an "All Resist minimum", as well as the misconception of a max Life threshold that is pointless to go past. You can never have too much Life.

-Basically, when improving your character, you're either increasing your Effective Health or your Damage Output, and it's really that simple.
Effective Health = Damage Mitigation x Life.
Damage Output = Damage x Strength x Attack Speed x Crit Chance & Crit Bonus.
Having more of one stat makes the other stats more valuable. For example, the higher your weapon damage, the more DPS each point of Strength will grant you. The more Strength you have, the more DPS each percent of Attack Speed will give you. Each stat supports the other stat.

-When it comes to "Which stat is more important? X or Y?" the answer is always "it depends". How much of each stat are we talking about here? How much of each stat do you already have? How much of the supporting stats do you already have? "Stat Priority" lists are pretty dumb.

-In my opinion, the three most overlooked and under appreciated stats for a Barbarian: Attack Speed%, Armor, Life%.

-The quantities of Attack Speed% you can find on gear is insane. When Blizzard put this random stat on gear, I don't think they really understood what 15% Increased Attack Speed really meant. Armor with Attack Speed bonuses should really only give about half of what they actually do. As it stands, this is a great way to improve your DPS.

-10 Armor = 1 All Resist. While All Resist is boosted by 50% (via War Cry Impunity), Armor is boosted by 45% (20% from War Cry + 25% from Tough as Nails). Armor also benefits from Enchantress' Aura and Leap - Iron Impact. When evaluating gear upgrades, consider each 10 points it adds to your Armor as equal to 1 All Resist.

-Life%, like Attack Speed%, is a stat that is undervalued by Blizzard's development team. It was probably tuned for classes that have 20-30k life, but Inferno Barbarians typically have more than that. It can be found on Helm, Shoulders, Chest, Belt, Shield and Jewellery. Helms without sockets are generally pretty bad, just because of the Life% boost. Don't ignore this stat when searching for gear upgrades in the Auction House.

-For top-end gear (Act 3/4 & Whimsyshire), Life on Hit and Block% stats are very good. They're not necessarily less important before Act 3/4, but the items that grant these stats are particularly expensive, and you're better off allocating your budget towards other items before you start to build towards these stats.

-Block has been pretty amazing for damage reduction, but you need a very good Shield and those are expensive. It's hard to explain mathematically why it's good, but taking 4000 less damage from single-target attacks 35% of the time sounds pretty damn good to me. Despite having 150 less resists than I used to have, I find that I'm much harder to kill. Again, you need a very good Shield to to put Justice Lanterns and Helm of Command to optimal use. Until you have the money for a top-end Shield (Stormshield or other), don't bother with Block.

-I'm not 100% sold on Melee damage reduction (ie. String of Ears). It's obviously very good, but I find that melee damage isn't typically what kills me anymore, and the Belt I have gives more Armor, Resistances and tons of Strength. I haven't really tested it out enough to say for sure, but I have a feeling I'll be going down this route again in the future.
Edited by Bokchoy#1328 on 6/6/2012 3:03 AM PDT
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Making Money

In my opinion, farming is terribly inefficient. When you farm, your productivity is limited to how fast you can kill things, the loot that can potentially drop, etc... You're also at the mercy of luck. You can luck out and find a $4m item, or you can go four runs without finding a single useful drop. Basically, your earning potential is restricted by the mechanics of the game. However, when your source of income is from flipping items on the Auction House, you becomes the master of your own luck and the sky is the limit.

The day before I killed Diablo, I made about 20m in about 6 hours on the AH. Since then, I've been earning roughly 10m per day (@ 3-5 hours a day). I made 3m this morning while brushing my teeth. The majority of this was done over the weekend when there was tons of traffic, and I've otherwise been pretty lucky with some of my purchases so I don't know how long I'll be able to sustain this level of success. In any case, flipping items on the Auction House is the real deal. I've never been good at making money in MMO's, so I definitely don't possess some extraordinary business sense. If I can do it, literally anyone can do it. 2-3m per hour is quite a bit, but even at an average of 500k per hour, I'm sure that's better than most people's current farming rate.

I obviously can't share all of my methods in detail because if everyone did exactly what I did, it would no longer be profitable. However, I can provide a little bit of insight for you to create your own methods. To be honest, I probably shouldn't be sharing any of this, but I've taken a lot from the Barbarian forums so I'd like to contribute something. Plus, I know it's pretty rough to be a Barbarian in Inferno. This is the only place I'm posting this and I really hope someone can benefit from it.

-The concept of flipping items is pretty simple. Player A is trying to purchase the best possible upgrades he can afford. Player B is trying to sell his drops so he get money to buy things. You're trying to be the guy in the middle. There are always items on the AH that are significantly cheaper than they should be. Making money off them is a matter of finding them before anybody else does, and reselling them at market value. Keep in mind that you also need to take into account the 15% transaction fee and the risk of not being able to sell the item at your projected market price.

-The first thing you need to learn is how to use the item Search function. You can search by level range, rarity, item slot, three stats, max buyout and by name for Legendary/Set items. Pretty self-explanatory. Make sure you know how to use it.

-You can search for Legendary/Set items by name. However, if you search this way you won't be able to use the stats fields to narrow your search down further. You can bypass this by not searching by item name. Instead, input the item's level, select "Legendary" for rarity and add whatever unique stat that the item has. Take String of Ears, for example. Strings with Melee Reduction of 17% or more are highly sought after. If you search by item name, you have to sift through hundreds of crappy Strings to find the good ones. If you search with "Reduced Melee Reduction: 17", you only see the best belts, and you can further narrow your search with the two remaining fields. This gives you a considerable advantage over people who aren't using this method. You can get to the best versions first, while they are looking for a needle in a haystack.

-Not inputting a max buyout and sorting by buyout in ascending order allows you to browse items that don't have buyouts. Bidding on them at the last seconds sometimes works and you'll get valuable items at amazing prices. Make sure to set your max buyout to about 70% of what you think the item's actual value is. That way, if someone challenges your bid, you can still make a profit. If you lose the auction, no harm is done. Keep track of these items on a notepad or set an alarm on your phone if you have to. I've gotten some absolute steals this way.

-How much do you know about Witch Doctor end game itemization? How sure are you? Do you understand Witch Doctor stats at the same level as you understand Barbarian stats? How much do you think the average Witch Doctor knows about Barbarians? My point is: most people are pretty ignorant about classes other than their own. As a result, buyers will naturally know more about what they're buying than sellers know about what they're selling. You can make a lot of money from this. A lot of sellers' knowledge of other classes is limited to: Str = Barb, Dex = Monk/DH, Int = WD/Wizard. Other stats are often undervalued and sometimes outright ignored by sellers. If a stat is undervalued, the item will also be undervalued. If an item is undervalued, it is an opportunity for profit. Hint: Life% is more valuable to Barbarians than any other class. It appears on Shoulders, Chest, Helm, Belt, Shield and Jewellery. Another Hint: For a Barbarian, a socket on a Helm is much more valuable than a socket on any other piece of gear. Reduced Melee Damage (Bracers) and bonus damage to Frenzy (Belt) are also pretty popular with Barbarians. Sellers don't know these things, so they'll sometimes put these items up for less than they should. Meanwhile, buyers realize her value and will pay a reasonable price for them. Targeting these misunderstood stats is a good way to find undercosted items. Keep in mind that the examples I used were strictly for Barbarians, so we're really only scratching the surface. Find out about other classes. Read their forums. Know enough about their itemization so that you can expand the type of items that you can make money off of.

-As a reverse of the above, sometimes you can profit from a knowledgeable seller and ignorant buyer. Some people just love bad items. There are certain types of items that will sell for much more than they should, just because bad players seem to absolutely love them. It's not hard to figure out what these items are. It feels weird buying an item for its true market value with the intention of selling them for more, but when it works, it always puts a smile on my face.

-What kind of player do you think is easiest to make a lot of gold from? The obvious answer is also the correct answer: Players who have a lot of gold. Rich players usually have tons of awesome gear. However, you can bet that they're still looking for upgrades and they're willing to pay top dollar for them. Suppose there is an amazing item going for $3M and it's one of the best of its kind available on the AH. Would it unreasonable to believe that it can potentially sell for 5-6M? Spending 3M on an investment seems like a huge risk, but what's the worst that can happen? If you can't sell it for your asking price, you should still be able to make a small profit off of them once the 1d12h expires. Just make sure that you have money left over to make other purchases in the meantime.

-Magic Find is a strange stat. Sellers will often ignore it and dismiss it as an extra random stat like "Life on Kill". Meanwhile, some buyers foam at the mouth for items with Inferno-caliber stats with Magic Find on them, even if they're pretty mediocre. Items with good stats are dime-a-dozen. Items with Magic Find are also dime-a-dozen. Items with good stats AND Magic Find are more rare, and a lot of crazies will pay top dollar for them. It's ironic how you've gotten more money from that Magic Find piece than the buyer ever will. =)

-Another overlooked stat is "Reduction to Level Requirement", especially for weapons. The thought of wielding an Inferno Act 4 weapon at level 46 is absolutely irresistable to someone with a ton of money and working on their second or third character. A weapon can do up 5x as much damage than other weapons at that level. Sellers will often ignore this stat and simply price the item based on its value to a level 60 player. However, there is a hidden value to these items for people love their alts.

-Other general advice:
...don't be overambitious with your selling prices. You don't want a logjam in your AH slots. You also don't want to be out some cash for 1d12h.
...don't be afraid to try new methods and diversify your targeted items. As long as the risk isn't too high, you can afford to make a bad purchase here and there trying new things.
...don't bite off more than you can chew. If you spent 80% of your gold on one item, even if the deal sounds good, you run the risk of not having enough money for other good deals. There is a risk involved with every purchase you make, so make sure you pick your shots.
...try selling big-ticket items in ways other than the AH. Avoiding the 15% tax is huge when it comes to multi-million dollar items. Offer them to friends. Advertise them on forums.
...take a break if it stops being fun. Kill some monsters. Hang out with friends. Just don't obsess yourself with your success and feel like need to keep going because you're on a roll. The AH will still be there when you return.

Again, while I can't share all my methods, this is basically about 30% of it, and all of my tactics are more or less just an extension of the above concepts. I'm sure each of you can develop your own methods and have a lot of success with it. Good luck.

Thanks for reading!

Bokchoy#1328
Edited by Bokchoy#1328 on 6/6/2012 2:44 AM PDT
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Man i don't understand why there isn't any responses to this thread.
You saved my life ! I was so struggling with act3 inferno, i read this , bought and sell few items, now i can run the siegebreaker with 5 stacks. Thanks so much !
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Bokchoy for Barbarian King!
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How much did it cost you to buy the gear you needed to clear act3-4? Spending 3-5 hours playing the AH and setting alarms and whatnot it unrealistic for most people. So whats the minimum gold us casual players will have to spend to do it?
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Man i don't understand why there isn't any responses to this thread.
You saved my life ! I was so struggling with act3 inferno, i read this , bought and sell few items, now i can run the siegebreaker with 5 stacks. Thanks so much !


Thanks! I'm glad to hear it. Best of luck with the rest of Act 3!

06/06/2012 03:58 PMPosted by Thunder
Bokchoy for Barbarian King!


Barbarian Queen!

06/06/2012 05:03 PMPosted by Titsanium
How much did it cost you to buy the gear you needed to clear act3-4? Spending 3-5 hours playing the AH and setting alarms and whatnot it unrealistic for most people. So whats the minimum gold us casual players will have to spend to do it?


I think the market value of my gear at Act 3 was about 40m. After Act 4 was 70m. These are just ballpark estimates.

3-5 hours doesn't have to be done consecutively. That's just my average. I made 500k this morning, logged in for maybe 15 mins. Then made another 5-6m in about 1.5 hours earlier this evening. If you have time to farm, just AH in its place.

Setting the alarm for non-buyout items doesn't seem to work as well as it used to. I no longer use that tactic.

mm, so your stats are way better then mine by miles an i spent over 20mill on my gear.. yawn.

i dont even understand how you guys get so much stats

but, Thanks for the ideas / build etc, im using Leap now instead of charge and it feels alot better i EVEN KILLED MY 1ST A3 ELITE!!!!!!! <3


Leap is amazing. In fact, I'd go as far as saying that it's better than Ignore Pain. I would drop Ignore Pain before I dropped Leap.

My gear has improved considerably since I've written this post. I still make an average of 5-10m per day, but I've been super lazy lately.
Edited by Bokchoy#1328 on 6/6/2012 9:27 PM PDT
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solid advice especially the auction house stuff, up there with zravex and newton etc
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I tried you build out, and i must say.... I LOVE IT! great write-up aswell, i'm sure it will help alot of fellow barbarians out! Excellent work man.
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Thanks a lot! Very good advise!
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Best advice someone ever gave me was to reroll DH .

Totally amazing class , the dps is greater than I could imagine . And dirt cheap to upgrade .

Im actually just using blue items bought from vendor since AH is down .

Also Im doing stuff where the drops are the same level as me .

Im not 1 hit killing stuff , I actually need to spam a heap to drop stuff but because the dps is so great Im definately in an area my barbarian was not able to do at same level with better gear.
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06/06/2012 09:45 PMPosted by dstryr
solid advice especially the auction house stuff, up there with zravex and newton etc


06/06/2012 10:22 PMPosted by Ninja
I tried you build out, and i must say.... I LOVE IT! great write-up aswell, i'm sure it will help alot of fellow barbarians out! Excellent work man.


06/07/2012 12:17 AMPosted by JoyMan
Thanks a lot! Very good advise!


Thanks, guys. Good luck with your progress.

Best advice someone ever gave me was to reroll DH .

Totally amazing class , the dps is greater than I could imagine . And dirt cheap to upgrade .

Im actually just using blue items bought from vendor since AH is down .

Also Im doing stuff where the drops are the same level as me .

Im not 1 hit killing stuff , I actually need to spam a heap to drop stuff but because the dps is so great Im definately in an area my barbarian was not able to do at same level with better gear.


That's good to hear, but this thread is about being a better Barbarian. Not about rolling other classes to circumvent the growing pains as a Barb.

To be honest, I truly think Barbarian is the best class in the game. It is weak for the first three acts of Inferno, but they have the highest overall potential once you get geared up. For those struggling with Inferno, there is light at the end of the tunnel, and you will be rewarded for your perseverance. I cannot be happier with my Barb.
Edited by Bokchoy#1328 on 6/7/2012 1:28 AM PDT
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nicely done
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This right here guys, is how you should approach inferno as a barb. Balancing your stats, not just stacking resists, using the ah efficiently. I tried explaining parts of these topics in my own thread here: http://eu.battle.net/d3/en/forum/topic/4552427779?page=1
and Im happy to see others have figured it out too, you also went into more details.

Ive also been using the AH a bit, but not on the same level as you. May I ask in what price ranges you are usually looking for items to resell compared to your total amount of gold? Do you have a rule of thumb to never spend more than say 20% of your gold on one item to resell, or what are your thoughts on this?

Anyway, grats on the kill and creds for providing such solid advice.

Edit: and do you think you could post your items with approximate prices? Would be very appreciated.
Edited by Dmn#2657 on 6/7/2012 2:09 AM PDT
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This right here guys, is how you should approach inferno as a barb. Balancing your stats, not just stacking resists, using the ah efficiently. I tried explaining parts of these topics in my own thread here: http://eu.battle.net/d3/en/forum/topic/4552427779?page=1
and Im happy to see others have figured it out too, you also went into more details.

Ive also been using the AH a bit, but not on the same level as you. May I ask in what price ranges you are usually looking for items to resell compared to your total amount of gold? Do you have a rule of thumb to never spend more than say 20% of your gold on one item to resell, or what are your thoughts on this?

Anyway, grats on the kill and creds for providing such solid advice.

Edit: and do you think you could post your items with approximate prices? Would be very appreciated.


My purchases in the past 4 hours range from 20k to 5.5m.
If an offer is compelling enough and the item will sell fast, I have no problems spending all of my money towards it.

Right now I only have 135k and I'm ready to go to bed. I hope to wake up to 15-18m. I started at 1.6m.

My current stats (w/ Warcry - Impunity)
Life: 62759
Resists: 799-862
Armor: 10872
Damage: 25759
Block Chance: 36.00
Block Amount: 3706-4704
Dodge Chance: 19.90
Life Per Hit: 1182

I'll post my items later. Otherwise, you can just inspect me from my profile.
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Great thread! A lot of things to consider. Thank you!!!
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So I'm in Act 2 Inferno, the beginning. My stats are as follows:

Life: 63,719
Armor: 8918
Resist: 600-700
Damage: 5706.13
Block Chance: 15%
Block Amount: 3706-4704
Dodge 11.7%
Life per hit: 0

Why on earth is my damage so low? My weapon has 768 damage with Attack Speed. I can't kill anything for crap, it takes me nearly 10 minutes to kill a champion pack farming Warden + Butcher, and Butcher I have to tank through the entire floor being fire for at least a minute, rolling cooldowns, health potions, and the wells.

What gives??
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So i'm not yet in inferno. I'm currently lvl 54 in Hell A1. But i was wondering about the runes on Frenzy. so everybody keeps going on about sidearm, is this the only viable option or would smite/maniac be just as good (considering the build). I'm currently running board barb with 6k armor and 3k dps.
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First of all I would like to say that if you are looking to play the auction house this is solid advice and I thank the op for her contribution.

However, this is exacly why Bliz is increasing rare drop rates and rebalancing inferno in patch 1.03. People do not want to play the auction house, they want to play the game.

I did not buy this game to buy random items low and sell them back for a profit. I bought this game to smash hundreds of monsters. If I only have a few hours to play I would much rather smash monsters to gain gold, even if it is significantly less profitable then just browsing the AH for deals.

Once patch 1.03 hits, the AH market will slowly begin to flood with very good items and the prices for the really good gear will come down significantly making end game gear much more accessable.

TLDR, if you are like me and want to play the game instead of the auction house to get the gear you need to beat inferno then know that Bliz is catering to you and when patch 1.03 comes out AH farming will only be necessary for those that just want to have a bazillion gold.
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