Critical damage build - one hit kills! - Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
This post will cover the best Crit Build in Witcher 3. As you can guess, we will be trying to optimize critical chance and critical damage to create a DPS monster
Critical damage Build
This is the build for those that want to maximize their Critical hit damage and overall DPS. We will do this by choosing appropriate skills and gear with critical chance and critical damage stats. Moreover, this will be supplemented by alchemy skills, potions, and decoctions. The last two are extremely important as you will need to use only a few specific ones.
With everything maxed out, you will be able to take out guards with a single hit. This is the scariest build that you can get. Of course, the big caveat is that you will die from two hits. So, something like Quen is mandatory.
If you are ready to take the risk and want to challenge yourself with the Critical damage build, please continue. Otherwise, I check other witcher 3 builds for safer options
The Build is tested on New Game+ and Deathmarch difficulty.
This section covers skills for the Critical damage build. Be sure to reset skills to be able to allocate skill points as suggested
|As the strong attack is one of the core damage types for this build 30% damage increase from this skill is mandatory
|Improves strong attacks' critical damage and chance.
|This skill will increase damage via mutagen bonuses and provide improvements to dodging. This ability will make dodging the most effective way to avoid enemy attacks.
|Improves fast attack damage, as they are one of the two primary ways the Crit build deals damage
|Improves fast attack critical damage and critical chance
|Although I take this skill, it is optional. It decreases any adrenaline loss from taking hits. Of course, with this build, you should be avoiding any hits, but sometimes stuff happens
|Will instantly grant 1 adrenaline point at the start of the combat increasing Geralt's damage. Moreover, it improves the adrenaline generation rate
|Alternative mode for Strong attacks. Use generated adrenaline points and stamina pool to release a single powerful hit. With it, you can reach some crazy high numbers. However, you are exposed to enemy damage while charging so be careful
|This skill will encourage starting combat with enemy by using a Strong attack to reduce their damage resistance.
|Alternative to Fast attack mode. I personally do not prefer it for this build as you are easily exposed to enemy hits and specifically archers. However, I still take it, to get damage bonus from mutagens
|A crucial skill for Critical damage build. It ensures that for each alchemy recipe you unlock, Geralt's toxicity increases by 0.5
|Although I generally do not take this one, for Crit build it is important. Heightened Tolerance will allow using two decoctions and two potions without activating Toxicity negative effects. This way we can get bonus damage from increased health regeneration.
|A very powerful ability that increases mutagen effectiveness by 50%. This is essential to maximize the attack power of the Crit build
|Increases Critical damage by 100% once adrenaline reaches 3 points. This will greatly contribute to the build's damage output. However, it may take some time to accumulate these points in combat, which could make it sometimes redundant
|Generally, with Katakan Decoction you should already have a 40%+ critical chance. To reach one hundred, you will need to kill 2 enemies in the encounter for this skill to activate and get an additional 60%.
|Cat School Techniques
|Increases fast attack damage and critical damage by 25% for each light piece of armor. It will come in especially handy once you activate Levity runeword
|The main mutation of this build. It plays an important role as it provides an instant damage boost compared to other mutations. For example, Bloodbath requires hitting multiple times for the bonus to activate. Metamorphosis also, moreover, there are more decoctions to use that would provide extremely high damage boost, that we will not be using.
Detailed Skill Progression
This covers detailed progression for the build as many players will not be high level to have 50+ skill points. So follow the abilities as you progress for maximum effectiveness.
If you are below level 11, I suggest following early game build guides
|First, let's unlock combat skills that will be extremely helpful throughout the game. Taking them early will make fights a bit easier.
|The first alchemy skill. It will help with increased toxicity.
|Cat School Techniques
|These abilities will help in combat. Cat School Techniques is best used with light armor, for this, equip Feline armor.
|By improving the alchemy tree further you will be able to increase attack power from mutagens and take more potions before toxicity hits.
|spend 6 skill points in alchemy
At this point, I recommend having all of the places of power collected. You will need a lot of skill points to progress through the build and unlock other skill slots fully.
|By unlocking Euphoria you will get bonus damage from having toxicity. Toxic blood is only taken for progression, otherwise, it is useless in our case.
|Now we unlock the last skills for the build. If you do not use Whirl, take Killing Spree and Hunter Instinct earlier. They will provide a large boost to overall DPS.
In this section, I would like to share some tips on how to best play Critical damage build in Witcher 3
Potion and decoction management
To best utilize the Crit build there are some specific caveats, specifically Toxicity. Your goal is to have Toxicity at 60-80%, as close to the top.
The main reason is that Euphoria provides a bonus to damage based on Toxicity. However, the question is why not go to 100%?
If you go above 80% Heightened Tolerance stops working and you start incurring health damage. This is a problem because then Water Hag decoction and Replenishment (runeword on your sword) stop working. This will lose some valuable damage that the build needs
Generally, you should be able to use two decoctions and two potions:
- Katakan Decoction
- Water Hag Decoction
- Thunderbolt potion
- Swallow potion
With these, we maximize the build's possible damage. The big caveat is that critical damage build is extremely fragile.
This is the main survivability action that you will use. Quen is very powerful because it guarantees that any single hit you take does not do any damage. Believe me, with this build, a single hit can be extremely deadly.
The good thing is that Quen does not require any Sign intensity investment for it to be effective. You should ALWAYS use Quen with Crit build in any combat encounter. In case you have problems maintaining it (getting hit often), you can get Fleet Footed early, to improve dodging and avoid more hits
Here is my suggested gear for the Crit build in Witcher 3
|Toussaint Knight's Steel Sword
|This is the most powerful steel sword in the game. Iris may compare to it in terms of damage, however, this has no confusing mechanics and pure high-damage stats
|Critical damage build uses Strong attacks and this sword perfectly complements it. Moreover, the HP drain can be counteracted with Superior Swallow
|Provides a +75% critical damage bonus. Unfortunately, armor piercing is not as useful.
|This is the most powerful sword in the game. Each attack raises its charge, resulting in higher damage. However, it requires some grinding for it to be at peak effectiveness. Moreover, to add a rune or runeword to it you will need to add sockets at runewright
|A mighty silver sword that gives a +100% Critical hit damage bonus and a +15% Critical hit chance. It is more powerful than Aerondight when it is not charged.
|Gives a 75% critical damage boost. Otherwise, it has normal stats
|This upgrade is the most important for this build I think. It will use the bonus HP regeneration from Superior Swallow to further improve DPS.
|Increases the reach of Rend and Whirl. Makes combat much easier, especially with Whirl. However, with this build, you would sacrifice bonus adrenaline generation which is extremely important.
|Greater Chernobog Runestone
|Increases the base attack power. Use it until you can obtain runewords
These armor pieces are chosen to maximize Geralt's Critical damage. Both of the suggested armors are good. Manticore armor is a bit better in my opinion.
|+5 Maximum Toxicity
+19% Resistance to piercing damage
+24% Resistance to slashing damage
+28% Resistance to damage from monsters
+25% Critical hit damage bonus
|New Moon Armor
|+30% Resistance to bludgeoning damage
+35% Resistance to slashing damage
+20% Critical hit damage bonus
+5% Critical hit chance
+10% Bonus gold
|Nilfgaardian Guardsman's Gauntlets
|+5% Resistance to piercing damage
+5% Resistance to bludgeoning damage
+5% Resistance to slashing damage
+5% Resistance to damage from monsters
+50% Critical hit damage bonus
|New Moon Trousers
|+10% Resistance to bludgeoning damage
+15% Resistance to slashing damage
+20% Critical hit damage bonus
+4% Critical hit chance
+5% Bonus gold
+5% Resistance to piercing damage
+6% Resistance to slashing damage
+4% Resistance to damage from monsters
+25% Critical hit damage bonus
Armor upgrades - there are multiple options here as it depends on your playstyle
|This is the most important upgrade for armor. It will make all pieces count as light ones. This way Cat School Techniques bonus will be applied to provide bonus critical damage.
|Greater Glyph of Mending
|Provides bonus HP regeneration. This is a decent quality of life improvement. However, the bonus is very low and in reality, works well only outside of combat.
|Greater Glyph of Quen
|The Glyph will provide a bonus to Quen's duration. Otherwise, there is no real benefit as the shield will still block only 1 hit.
Potions and tonics
I will split this into two categories - primary and optional. The first are the ones that boost damage and help critical damage build. The latter gives some survivability, but you will have to sacrifice DPS.
|This potion is very important for the build. It increases attack power. Moreover, when there is a thunderstorm, the critical rate is 100%. This increases DPS by 30-40%
|Using it will improve survivability and improve damage. The attack power boost comes from ensuring maximum HP with Water Hag Decoction and Invigoration
|Superior White Raffard's Decoction
|This potion is great to have on hand. It restores HP and provides a few seconds of invulnerability. Just have in mind, that by using it you will probably reach high toxicity and incur an HP regeneration penalty.
|Another potion that I recommend having. In case you see that encounter is too difficult switch it with Superior Swallow or Superior Thunderbolt to gain time slowing effect.
|Thanks to this decoction you will raise Geralt's critical hit chance by 10%. This will greatly improve overall DPS.
|Water Hag Decoction
|Using Superior Swallow you can ensure 100% HP. With it, the damage is greatly boosted while you maintain it.
Thank you for reading the post on the best Critical build in Witcher 3. I covered all essential parts to be effective - skills progression, recommended gear, tactics, and general tips.
If you have any questions or suggestions leave a comment below