I tried to make a vitality Primal Strike build work for a past couple of weeks. I tried Conjurer and Ritualist and they were both very squishy. One day I looked at my list of PS builds and I saw that two of my best builds were Warders. So I tried vitality PS with a Warder – and it worked! It is not as good as those other two Warders but it is finally good enough which is a miracle for a vitality PS build (it generally sucks). It works because of having damage absorption, damage reduction, large health pool and decent enough damage/lifesteal. But it was possible to do only due to latest changes to soldier mastery (I would recommend to reduce cooldown on War Cry to make it permanent or to add more CDR to Rotgheist set). This build can do SR 80 but you have to play carefully with it. It is still a little squishier but far better than any other vitality PS build that I have tried.
Here is a list comparing all my Primal Strike builds from best to worst. All are at least SR 65-66 capable.
Dragonborn – great build, 2H melee physical PS, good offensively and very powerful defensively (best of my PS builds)
Thor – great build, 2H melee lightning PS, offensively similar to Dragonborn, defensively noticably weaker than Dragonborn
Aetheros Ranged – great build, 2H ranged aether PS, offensively a little weaker than Dragonborn, defensively a little weaker than Thor
Aetheros – great build, 2H melee aether PS, offensively a little better than Aetheros Ranged (and a little weaker than Dragonborn), defensively a little weaker than Aetheros Ranged
Colderos – great build, 2H melee cold PS, offensively noticably better than Dragonborn (best of my PS builds), defensively a little weaker than Aetheros
Colderos Ranged – great build, 2H ranged cold PS, offensively a little weaker than Colderos, defensively a little weaker than Colderos (actually only when facetanking bosses otherwise you can take out enemies from distance)
Aether Primate – great build, 2H melee aether PS, offensively similar to Aetheros Ranged, defensively a little weaker than Colderos Ranged
Viteros – good build, 2H melee vitality PS, offensively a little weaker than Aetheros Ranged, defensively similar to Colderos Ranged
Meme Striker – good build, 2H melee lightning PS, offensively similar to Colderos, defensively a little weaker than Viteros
Chaotic Primate - good build, 2H melee chaos PS, offensively a little weaker than Viteros, defensively a little weaker than Meme Striker
Storm Knight – OK build, 1H melee + shield lightning PS, offensively noticably weaker than Chaotic Primate, defensively a little weaker than Chaotic Primate
Storm Blitzer – OK build, 1H melee + shield lightning PS, offensively a little weaker than Storm Knight, defensively a little weaker than Storm Knight
Savage Stormrender – weaker build, DW melee lightning PS on cooldown, offensively noticably weaker than Storm Blitzer, defensively a little weaker than Storm Blitzer
Crafting bonus on helm and gloves is to slow resistance (to overcap it). Build uses three monster infrequent items – Ugdenbog Girdle, Rylok Mark and Plagueguard Grips. You want affixes for resistances, AS and OA, DA.
Stats of the build
nice DPS from 200k to 300k
OK base OA - around 2900 OA, high OA when Fighting Spirit is up (around 3150 OA)
55 DA reduction to enemies from Annihilation
low crit damage - 31 %
OK vitalityl RR from War Cry, Rattosh, Devouring Swarm and both rings - up to -123 %
big life (you don’t have to worry to take some damage) - around 17 500 health
good base DA - close to 3000 DA
55 OA reduction to enemies from Annihilation
lifesteal is 14 % (with Wendigo Totem) + 10 % on Primal Strike itself
maxed resistances with reasonably decent overcap
high CC resistances (except trap just be careful around Benny)
OK physical resistance 23 %
good armor above 2400
healing from Wendigo Totem
damage reduction from War Cry
damage absorption from Menhir’s Bulwark
Prismatic Rage from component
image from the game with passive buffs only
image from the game with passive buffs + Blood Pact and Sacrifice (practically always up)
image from the game with passive buffs + Blood Pact, Sacrifice, Hungering Void and Fighting Spirit
I play SR with camera pointed away from enemies and I try my builds only in SR 65-66 and SR 80. I play around 10 SR runs per character.
This build does SR 65-66 relatively easily. It can even do SR 80 but it is slower. Killing Kuba takes some time. Zantarin is sometimes easy and sometimes he is very hard to leech from (probably items he wears). Also try to not stand in any green ground damage. It weakens you a lot. If you die it is usually in those 2-3 seconds when War Cry is not up.
I don’t play Crucible so I don’t have a time number for it.