Barbarian passives


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Passive skills replaced Traits late in game development. Many passives are very similar to previously-known traits, with the main changes coming in changes to the character level requirements, and the fact that passives are on/off, rather than using 1, 3, or 5 points, as Traits did. Characters only get three passive in total, with one slot opening up for a passive at Clvl 10, 20, and 30.

Barbarian Passives[edit]

See which of these skills players use the most in the ranking pages in Ruthless and Weapons Master are far and away the most popular for softcore players, with each over 85% use rate. There's more variety in Hardcore where survival is valued more than sheer DPS.

Name Level Description
Pound of Flesh

10 Gain 50% additional Life from health globes.

10 You deal 40% additional damage to enemies below 30% health.
Nerves of Steel

13 Fatal damage instead reduces you to 15% Life. For 3 seconds afterward, you take 95% reduced damage and are immune to all control-impairing effects.

This effect may occur once every 60 seconds.

Weapons Master

16 Gain a bonus based on the weapon type of your main hand weapon:

Swords/Daggers: 8% increased damage
Maces/Axes: 5% Critical Hit Chance
Polearms/Spears: 8% attack speed
Mighty Weapons: 2 Fury per hit

Berserker Rage

20 You deal 25% additional damage while near maximum Fury.
Inspiring Presence

20 The duration of your shouts is doubled. After using a shout you and all allies within 100 yards regenerate 2% of maximum Life per second for 60 seconds.

Your shouts are:
Battle Rage
Threatening Shout
War Cry


24 Each point of Fury spent heals you for 965.5578 Life.

Heal amount is increased by 1% of your Health Globe Healing Bonus.


27 Increase all Fury generation by 10%.

Increase maximum Fury by 20.

Fury is used to fuel your most powerful attacks.


30 Reduce all non-Physical damage by 20%. When you take damage from a ranged or elemental attack, you have a chance to gain 2 Fury.
Tough as Nails

30 Increase Armor by 25%.

Increase Thorns damage dealt by 50%.

No Escape

35 Increase the damage of Weapon Throw, Ancient Spear, and Avalanche by 30% against enemies more than 15 yards away from you.

40 While below 35% Life, all skills cost 50% less Fury, Life per Fury Spent is doubled, and all damage taken is reduced by 50%.

45 As long as there are 3 enemies within 12 yards, all of your damage is increased by 20%.

This skill is affected by your characters:


50 The duration of control-impairing effects on you are reduced by 30%. In addition, whenever a Stun, Freeze, Fear, or Immobilize is cast on you, you have a chance to recover 20% of your maximum Life.

55 You no longer degenerate Fury. Instead, you generate 2 Fury every 1 seconds.
Boon of Bul-Kathos

60 Reduce the cooldowns of your:

Earthquake by 15 seconds.
Call of the Ancients by 30 seconds.
Wrath of the Berserker by 30 seconds.

This skill is affected by your characters:


  • See the Barbarian skill archive for the full list, with descriptions, of all active and passive skills that have been removed from the game during development.

The Barbarian's skills and skill trees were first seen at BlizzCon 2008 as a mix of active and passive skills (mostly passive), with only a few enabled and many showing nothing more than vague descriptions in the skill trees.

For the BlizzCon 2009 build, 24 of the Barbarian's passive skills were removed, and only five new passives were introduced: Scavenge, Strong Constitution, Bloodthirst, Retaliation, and Cripple.

For BlizzCon 2010, passive skills were removed from the skill trees and replaced by traits. Twelve of the Barbarian's passive skills were removed, but this time, 28 new traits were introduced. Only two passives were turned, more or less directly, into traits: Bad Temper and Second Wind.

By the July 2011 Press Event, the skill system had once again been completely redesigned. The traits system was scrapped, and replaced by a new version of passive skills, but still separate from the active skills. Although 13 of the Barbarian's traits were turned into passives, 18 of them were removed, and 9 passives were brand new.

The list of Barbarian passives shown at the press event was obviously still in development. There were several issues: Pound of Flesh was listed twice, Cruelty had the same description and icon as Bloodthirst, Slaughter had the same description and icon as Berserker Rage, and 6 passives had no level requirements, possibly so beta players could try them out right from the beginning. Also, the list of Barbarian passives was noticeably longer than that of the other classes, and will no doubt be shortened.

Just a few days later, the passive Tough As Nails was announced, which seems to be designed to replace Iron Skin and another passive.