Diablo 4 > Build Guides > Hammer of the Ancients Barbarian Guide

Smash your way to victory! With the overhaul to Overpower, Hammer of the Ancients (HOTA) is one of the strongest skills in all of Diablo 4. This setup will have you plowing through Nightmare dungeons in no time! Even in Nightmare Dungeon 100s, this build will allow you to one-shot elites, bosses, and even Uber Lilith if you're fully optimized!

The Paragon Boards emphasize the most powerful stats, especially Berserking duration, Damage while Berserking, Overpower, and Damage to Close enemies. It's important to note also that this is a "glass cannon" version of HOTA. If you wish to build more defensively, you could drop Tuskhelm of Joritz the Mighty , Tibault's Will , and/or the Banished Lord's Talisman in favor of more resistance or damage reduction, but doing that is unnecessary unless you want to push 100 Nightmare Dungeons.

This Hammer of the Ancients setup focuses on AOE damage (utilizing Hemomancy) rather than single-target boss damage. If you want a more one shot focused build and boss-oriented style, see the "Alternative Setup'' section below.

Skill Point Allocation

Skill PointSkill
1Lunging Strike
2Enhanced Lunging Strike
3Hammer of the Ancients
4Combat Lunging Strike
5Enhanced Hammer of the Ancients
6Furious Hammer of the Ancients
7Rallying Cry
8Challenging Shout
9Hammer of the Ancients
10Hammer of the Ancients
11Hammer of the Ancients
12Hammer of the Ancients
13Hammer of the Ancients
14War Cry
15Enhanced Rallying Cry
16Tactical Rallying Cry
17Enhanced Challenging Shout
18Tactical Challenging Shout
19Enhanced War Cry
20Mighty War Cry
21Booming Voice
22Booming Voice
23Booming Voice
26Pit Fighter
27Pit Fighter
28Pit Fighter
29Wrath of the Berserker
30Prime Wrath of the Berserker
31Supreme Wrath of the Berserker
32Raid Leader
33Raid Leader
34Raid Leader
35Unbridled Rage
36Aggressive Resistance
37Prolific Fury
38Prolific Fury
39Prolific Fury
40Thick Skin
44Imposing Presence
45Imposing Presence
46Imposing Presence
47Martial Vigor
48Martial Vigor
49Martial Vigor
53Brute Force
54Brute Force
55Brute Force
56Aggressive Resistance
57Aggressive Resistance
58Guttural Yell

Build-enabling Uniques

  • Tuskhelm of Joritz the Mighty - allows you to keep your damage, Fury, and cooldown up, and scales very well with your Berserking uptime.
  • Banished Lord's Talisman - gives you more Overpowers, and amplifies the damage of your guaranteed Overpower.
  • Tibault's Will - an incredible damage boost when we are unstoppable.

Optimal Uniques

  • Harlequin Crest - the best of the best! Increases your survivability, damage, and cooldown.
  • The Grandfather - godly two-handed sword! Overtakes the damage output of you slashing slot, when we obtain this we drop the Accelerating Aspect, and put Edgemaster's Aspect on the 1h weapon.


As a general rule, we take the Polearm Expertise while using the Hemomancy/AOE setup regardless. This is because we get two good benefits (+10% Lucky Hit Chance and +10% increased damage while Healthy) without the need to make enemies vulnerable. If you are using a Polearm weapon in your Two-Handed Slashing slot, choose the Two-Handed Sword Expertise.


  • Aspect of Disobedience - this is the best damage reduction aspect in the game, almost doubles your armor when put in your Amulet, or increases it by 66% in your other slots. It's optimal to put this in a well-rolled chest piece.
  • Relentless Berserker's Aspect - a true powerhouse that keeps our Berserking going, which is necessary to trigger a lot of our damage bonuses.
  • Ghostwalker Aspect - gives us increased move speed, unstoppable, and the ability to run right past enemies - an invaluable mobility boost!
  • Aspect of Echoing Fury - an overpowered Fury generator that allows us to spam Hammer of the Ancients, and scales with our Resource Generation skill to give us even more!
  • Bold Chieftain's Aspect - provides a big reduction to the cooldown on all three of our shots.
  • Limitless Rage Aspect - a big damage boost that scales with Fury generation at maximum - it's perfect for a Two-Handed weapon slot.
  • Edgemaster's Aspect - another damage amplifier that scales with Fury value
  • Aspect of Ancestral Force - increases the damage of Hammer of the Ancients and allows it to quake for some added AOE damage.
  • Accelerating Aspect - gives us increased Attack Speed, which helps us clear faster.

Weapon Selection

As a general rule, maces (whether One-Handed or Two-Handed) are the best in the game, given recent changes to Overpower (maces provide an implicit roll to Overpower Damage). This means that you will want both of your One-Handed weapons to be Maces in addition to our Two-Handed Mace.

For Two-Handed Slashing Weapons, a Two-Handed Axe will provide a bigger benefit compared to Swords or Polearms, so prioritize them unless you find The Grandfather - which is by far the best Two-Handed Weapon we can use. For information on Weapon Expertise to select based on various scenarios, see the "Expertise" section.

Seneschal Construct

Paragon Board Glyphs and Priorities

We take these Paragon glyphs:

  • Ire - Initial Board - gives multiplicative bonus to Damage while Berserking, which is almost always active in this build, and additional damage reduction on top of it.
  • Marshal - Weapons Master Board - provides more cooldown reduction to our shouts, which are our resource engines, as well as additional Physical Damage and and Armor.
  • Wrath - Carnage Board - even though Critical Strike Damage is now additive rather than multiplicative, this gives a good damage boost (that scales with The Grandfather as well) and some extra Fury whenever we crit.
  • Territorial - Bone Breaker Board - Close Damage bonus and Close Damage reduction, both of which synergize well as we'll be hitting and getting hit by enemies within striking reach.
  • Dominate - Warbringer Board - A big boost of over 300% to our Overpower Damage! Unfortunately the free Overpower for 30 seconds doesn't help too much, since we're getting a lot more Overpowers than that already.

Legendary Nodes:

  • Bone Breaker - this is a broken node that gives you another free Overpower every 12 seconds.
  • Blood Rage - The Bleeding effect does nothing for this build, but the raw boost to damage as a result of our high Damage while Berserking rating makes it a mandatory choice.


Alternative Setup

For boss-oriented focus, make the three following adjustments:

  • Swap out the Polearm Expertise with Two-Handed Axe
  • Swap out the Bold Chieftain's Aspect for a Ring of Red Furor
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