New player needs advice for first char

It’s clearly designed for Death Knight (Soldier/Necro) or other characters using Aether damage. It focuses mainly on Aether damage, for which Warlords (Soldier/Oathkeeper) don’t have support. You’ll need the Necro mastery here.

Since you already started playing an Oathkeeper, I’d suggest making a Warlord out of your character. Warlords were somewhat OP at the beginning of the “Forgotten Gods” expansion. Hence they were nerfed several times… They probably aren’t “top tier” any more, but they are still very “viable”. Besides that, Warlords can always be played with physical damage without conversions or anything that would require special items. They are a very good class to gear up “step by step”.

Some months ago, I started my journey into GD with a Warlord. The character took me to (early) endgame and - what’s most important - gave me the opportunity to farm for gear for the following characters. I used malawiglenn’s “beginner spinner”. You can find it here:

Good luck on your journey into GD!

Welcome to the game! Have fun :slight_smile:

Yes and no. There is %physical damage on the krieg set, so going physical damage is not impossible.

That. Plus the set don’t have global physical to aether conversion.

Also set isn’t only Death Knight or even requiring Soldier. Spellbinder is viable option.

Thanks for the clarification. Of course you’re both right. I should have worded that clearer. :blush:

The original question was about using Krieg set on a Warlord though. And that’s still something I wouldn’t recommend. There are simply better options.


ty for all your answers. At the moment my Oathkeeper sits at lvl 35. I think i will focus on fire as main dps source. Throwing my shield never gets old. I’m not sure wich second class mastery will be a good fit to support this playstyle and gives some surviveability on top. I’m also pretty clueless wich Devotions i should take. The Torchthing for the meteorshower seems to be pretty cool and fitting.

Started also a few new toons to try around and really fell in love with the visuals an feeling of Boneharvest and the whole vitaly/lifeleechtheme overall. The idea of an 2 handed necromancer using Boneharvest or a vitaly based type of caster seems pretty pleasing to me. This will defenetly my second toon one day.

Overall i have so much fun in Grim Dawn. The whole atmosphere in more dystopic and dark setting is just great.

Can’t go wrong with a demolitionist for damage, and an occultist for defence.

It’s outdated, but I’m waiting for to update it.

Good call. Keep an eye out for Blood knights and for m. death’s reach


I was reading trough your Ritualist guide on my way to work. Could i use this as an basic build to farm gear and transit later on to an two handed bone harvest build? The idea of the strong lifeleech potential together with wendigo totem seems quite pleasing to me. Imo i need the Blood Knights for the cold to vitality convertion if i want to play two handed and using the transmutor on BH?

Or would be a reaper cold build a saver choice?

IMO, dark one’s set is the catalyst to ALL builds in GD because:

  1. How accessible it is
  2. How great its performance is

With it you can farm end game content, and since gear drop is more or less randomized, you’ll be able to build up a large library of items quickly.

So yes. You can. But I you might have to level a second character (sentinel for more CDR for more BH spam, or cabalist for better flat damage and stats).

Ideally, I wouldn’t use BK set on a ritualist.

“Need” is a strong word. You don’t need BK set to use bone harvest effectively, though it will not be perform effectively in end game challenges.

This is a noob trap. Not enough RR (resist reduction).

Again, thx for your answer your postings are helping me a lot to get a better basic understanding how things works in GD.

After your thoughts on this and reading on other beginner guides i think i restart on an dark one’s using toon to fill my empty stash to farm gear.

With keeping this in mind i think i’ll try an opressor. With the option for RR on acid and vitality there should also a way to build on an acid shield based AoM/RF version of it. BH should also doable. If i need a an other char to complete the top tier super hard endgame challanges i can level one after i got some gear in my stash.

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Good morning,

ty for the link to the guide it’s really helpfull.

Atm i play your Ritualist and holy cow the toon is cutting trough everything whats stands in my way. Found a lair i think it was called Smugglers Basin. There was a big bad dude called Gutworm in it. He was level 25 i was lvl 18 and i beat this dude with ease. Also the cultist Hideout wehre i died over and over again in my OB was just a breeze. Will play this toon on par to the level in my OB and if it stay this much fun i will further go on with it.

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Glad it’s helpful. My advice here is to try and understand the levelling decisions I made (e.g. skill point distribution, devotion pathing, etc.) so that you can apply this knowledge on future builds

Feel free to ask away if you have any questions

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Thx to the insane AoE and sustain i’m now at lvl 32. I found a few Bonespike Dagger’s and equipped the best rolled. So if i got it right i can use the equipped one till i can upgrade it on next higher difficulty? The worth comes from the % dps increase to vitality damage and the skill bonuses?

If you’re not using Weapon Damage skills, then it doesn’t really matter much (to me!) to swap out a higher version, unless the affixes or base item give you a huge boost. Simply having the item skill modifiers is the necessary thing, such as CD reduction for RE, since those don’t change with higher level versions! :slight_smile:

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RXjunkie is mostly correct, but this logic applies moreso to end-game specs with a huge %damage pool of ~2500%.

Thus, a 50-60% damage increase is somewhat negligible.

But in the early game, when you have 600% vit damage, 60% vit damage translates to a 10% damage gain.

So basically, while levelling keep an eye out for the bonespike with the highest %vit damage value.

Things like flat damage are irrelevant on the character because your hardest hitting skills do not use %WD.

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Welcome to a great game! I will vouch for Malawiglenn’ beginner builds and guides. They are really well done. He also wrote a guide for beginner tips/knowledge I believe which really helped me in the beginning for some basic understanding of game mechanics.

His acid perdition Aegis build is my first build that I have gotten to semi farming status (SR 65-66) and it is fun to play if you like the shield throwing thing!

Maya is the pet master - I am using one of her builds (occultist single class) as my next character.

Don’t hesitate to ask questions here. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again there are quite a few awesome folks here who take extra time to help people out - best community in any game I have ever played.

Good luck!

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Thy for your explanations. So if i get it right all skills with a % of weapon damage are tied to your equiped weapon base dps? As example Boneharvest. Skills like Drain Essence are pure caster spells?

Jeah GD is really a great game. It’s a long time ago since i stay wake till late at night to play just another half hour. ^^ I read trough Malawiglenns Beginner Builds and will defenetly choose one of them for my next char as an inspiration. While i leveling with sir_spanksalot guide as guideline i try to get as much knowledge of basic understanding from GD as possible.


To further complicate things, some item modifiers can add % Weapon Damage to “caster” spells that do not have them, such Spellscourge set that adds some % WD to Devastation.

just to be extremely pedantic, weapon damage also includes “flat damage” from things like:

  • soul harvest (bone harvest’s 3rd node)
  • blood pact (2nd node of wendigo totem)

If you need me to explain further, just say the word