Whether you’re looking for a fantastic early game Barbarian build or want to rock PvP or PvE in the endgame, the Diablo 4 Thorns Barbarian is the way to go. Thorns is an offensive stat in Diablo 4 that deals damage back to enemies dealing direct attacks, even to ranged attackers, but it doesn’t deal damage over time. Here is how to create the best Thorns Barbarian engame build in Diablo 4 Season 1.
Note: If you’re still leveling, I highly recommend you check out our Diablo 4 best Barbarian leveling builds.
Diablo 4 best Thorns Barbarian endgame playstyle
The Diablo 4 Thorns Barbarian naturally relies on Thorns to eliminate their enemies. Ever since the major nerfs made to Barbarians in Season 1, Thorns is likely the best build a Barbarian can use. While I recommend tweaking this build to fit how you like to play, the playstyle of this Thorns Barbarian is to charge into battle, focus your damage on the toughest enemy, and let all the weaker enemies kill themselves by attacking you since your Thorn bonus is so high.
Jokingly, many Diablo 4 players have called this Thorns Barbarian build the “walking simulator” since all you need to do is walk around and enemies will die the second they hit you. In reality, the Thorns Barbarian build is a lot of fun and takes skill to use if you want to go far with it.
All Diablo 4 Season 1 best Thorns Barbarian endgame skills
- Combat Flay
- Tough as Nails
- Strategic Challenging Shout
In general, there are four necessary abilities for the best Thorns Barbarian build in Diablo 4. I recommend you pair the Thorns abilities with your favorite Berserk and Bleed attacks as that will make this build more versatile.
First, you need to unlock Combat Flay which is the right upgrade option for Flay in the Basic branch. Combat Flay can stack four times and grants damage reduction and 50 Thorns for three seconds on direct Flay hits.
Next, you need Outburst and Tough as Nails which are both found on the Defensive branch. Outburst grants 20 Thorns and 10 extra Thorns for each 50 bonus Maximum Life you have. Tough as Nails increases your Thorns by 3% and enemies take 10% of Thorn damage as Bleed damage. Both of these abilities are very good and make your Thorns so much better.
Lastly, you need Strategic Challenging Shout which is the second upgrade for Challenging Shout on the Defensive branch. Strategic Challenging Shout allows you to gain Thorns equal to 30% of your Maximum Life when using Challenging Shout. This ability is insanely good, and when stacked with the other Thorn abilities, your Thorn Barbarian will delete anything that touches it.
Best Diablo 4 Season 1 Thorns Barbarian endgame Aspects
- Needleflare Aspect
- Death Wish
An essential Aspect for the best Thorn Barbarians build is the Needleflare Aspect. Needleflare is found in the Yshari Sanctum Dungeon which is in the north part of Caldeum in the Kehjistan region. The Needlflare Aspect adds a 20-40% chance to deal Thorn damage to all surrounding enemies, not just the attacking enemy.
Death Wish is another essential Aspect for the Thorns Barbarian build. Death Wish is found in the Penitent Cairns Dungeon which is in the Wailing Hills in Scosglen. The Death Wish Aspect allows you to gain more Thorns while Berserking, which can make for a great combo as you use Berserk to take down the toughest enemy in the area while the weaker enemies hit you and die thanks to your Thorns.
While Needflare and Death Wish are the two necessary Aspects for the Thorns Barbarian build, I recommend pairing this build with more Aspects that focus on Berserk or Bleed. There are a lot of Berserk and Bleed Aspects that synergize well — Aspect of Berserk Ripping is the perfect example. Experiment with different options to make the best Thorns Barbarian build your own unique concoction.
Best Diablo 4 Thorns Barbarian endgame gear
To finalize the best Thorns Barbarian build in Diablo 4, you need Razorplate. Razorplate is a Unique Chest Armor that grants upwards of 10,000 Thorns. Razorplate is absolutely necessary if you want the best Thorns Barbarian build. Sadly, the only way to get Razorplate is through RNG, but if you want the best odds of getting it, I recommend farming Aberrant Cinders during a Helltide and opening Tortured Gifts.
For your weapon, I recommend putting the Needleflare Aspect on an already powerful Legendary two-handed weapon. Needleflare’s effect doubles on a two-handed weapon, so use that to your advantage.
Besides that, equip any armor or weapon you find that has Thorns on it. With the Thorns Barbarian build, the more Thorns, the better.