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Dual wielding

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Dual wielding refers to using a one-handed weapon in both hands. It is intended to be an option halfway between the damage output of two-handed weapons and the defensiveness of a shield and weapon combo.

Mechanics

Whenever the player equips two one-handed weapons of any type, dual wielding grants the following stats: {{#ask:

-Has subobject::Character
Has stat id::~*dual_wield*
|?Has stat text=
|format=ul
|sort=Has stat text
|mainlabel=- 

}} The attack speed bonus is applied multiplicatively with other attack speed modifiers. These bonuses to dual wielding can be increased via passive skills. Weapons do not have to be of the same type to receive dual wielding bonuses.

There are no penalties of any kind to attacks with the player's off-hand weapon. The majority of attack skills in Path of Exile will alternate between equipped weapons for attacks,[1] swinging first with the main hand and then with the off-hand weapon. The resulting attack speed is the average of the two weapons' attack speed, so the total time for a pair of attacks is as if each weapon attacked once.

It is possible to dual-wield wands. However, players cannot wield a wand in one hand and a melee weapon in the other.

Single-weapon attacks

The following attacks only use the player's main hand weapon[1]:

  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "ground slam".: Mace
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "leap slam".: Axe, Mace, Sword
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "ice crash".: Axe, Mace, Sword
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "sunder".: Axe, Mace
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "double strike".: Any
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "ancestral warchief".: Any

These attacks choose a random applicable weapon to attack with:

  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "reckoning".
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "whirling blades".

When the player has two different weapons equipped when using a skill that only works with one of them, only the valid weapon will be used for attacks made with that skill. Skills that fall under this category (apart from the above) include:

  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "glacial hammer".: Mace
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "heavy strike".: Axe, Mace, Sword
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "infernal blow".: Axe, Mace, Sword
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "earthquake".: Axe, Mace
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "lacerate".: Axe, Sword
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "puncture".: Claw, Dagger, Sword
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "reave".: Claw, Dagger, Sword
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "viper strike".: Claw, Dagger, Sword
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "whirling blades".: Claw, Dagger, Sword
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "blade flurry".: Claw, Dagger, Sword


If only one weapon is used, the dual wielding bonuses will still apply; however, the attack rate will be based only on the weapon that is actually used. The tooltip appears to be wrong.

Simultaneous attacks

The following skills attack with both weapons at the same time[1], both need to be of the required weapon type:

Skill gemStr.Dex.Int.Lvl.

Unique items

These items contain bonuses which can only be obtained through dual wielding:

ItemLvl.Stats

Passive skills

There are passive skills that grant dual wielding bonuses.

Physical damage while dual wielding

These passive skills grant increased physical damage with weapons while dual wielding.

Name Bonuses
Dual Wield Damage
    • 10% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
    • 12% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
Dual Wield Damage and Attack Speed
    • 3% increased Attack Speed while Dual Wielding
    • 8% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
    • 3% increased Attack Speed while Dual Wielding
    • 10% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
Dual Wield Damage and Block
  • 2% additional Block Chance while Dual Wielding
  • 6% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
Ambidexterity
  • 26% increased Attack Damage with Main Hand
  • 20% increased Attack Speed with Off Hand
Aspect of the Panther
  • 2% additional Block Chance while Dual Wielding
  • 6% increased Attack Speed while Dual Wielding
  • +10 to maximum Life
  • 16% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
Blade Barrier
  • 3% additional Block Chance while Dual Wielding
  • 50% increased Block Recovery
  • 18% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
Bravado
  • 4% additional Chance to Block while Dual Wielding
  • 12% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
Dervish
  • 2% additional Block Chance while Dual Wielding
  • 6% increased Attack Speed while Dual Wielding
  • 24% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
Duality
  • 24% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
Gemini
  • 2% additional Block Chance while Dual Wielding
  • 15% increased Accuracy Rating while Dual Wielding
  • 20% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
Swagger
  • 2% additional Block Chance while Dual Wielding
  • 24% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding

Accuracy while dual wielding

These passive skills grant increased accuracy rating while dual wielding.

Name Bonuses
Dual Wield Accuracy
    • 16% increased Accuracy Rating while Dual Wielding
    • 18% increased Accuracy Rating while Dual Wielding
Gemini
  • 2% additional Block Chance while Dual Wielding
  • 15% increased Accuracy Rating while Dual Wielding
  • 20% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding

Attack speed while dual wielding

These passive skills grant increased attack speed while dual wielding.

Name Bonuses
Dual Wield Attack Speed
  • 4% increased Attack Speed while Dual Wielding
Dual Wield Attack and Cast Speed
  • 4% increased Attack Speed while Dual Wielding
  • 4% increased Cast Speed while Dual Wielding
Dual Wield Damage and Attack Speed
    • 3% increased Attack Speed while Dual Wielding
    • 8% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
    • 3% increased Attack Speed while Dual Wielding
    • 10% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
Ambidexterity
  • 26% increased Attack Damage with Main Hand
  • 20% increased Attack Speed with Off Hand
Aspect of the Panther
  • 2% additional Block Chance while Dual Wielding
  • 6% increased Attack Speed while Dual Wielding
  • +10 to maximum Life
  • 16% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
Dark Arts
  • 12% increased Attack Speed while Dual Wielding
  • +20 to Dexterity
  • 8% increased Cast Speed while Dual Wielding
Dervish
  • 2% additional Block Chance while Dual Wielding
  • 6% increased Attack Speed while Dual Wielding
  • 24% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding

Critical strike chance while dual wielding

These passive skills grant increased critical strike chance with weapons while dual wielding.

Name Bonuses
Dual Wield Critical Strike Chance
  • 25% increased Weapon Critical Strike Chance while Dual Wielding
Twin Terrors
  • 75% increased Weapon Critical Strike Chance while Dual Wielding

Chance to block while dual wielding

These passive skills grant additional chance to block while dual wielding.

Name Bonuses
Block
  • 2% additional Block Chance while Dual Wielding or holding a Shield
Dual Wield Block
  • 2% additional Block Chance while Dual Wielding
Dual Wield Damage and Block
  • 2% additional Block Chance while Dual Wielding
  • 6% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
Aspect of the Panther
  • 2% additional Block Chance while Dual Wielding
  • 6% increased Attack Speed while Dual Wielding
  • +10 to maximum Life
  • 16% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
Blade Barrier
  • 3% additional Block Chance while Dual Wielding
  • 50% increased Block Recovery
  • 18% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
Bravado
  • 4% additional Chance to Block while Dual Wielding
  • 12% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
Brutal Blade
  • 4% additional Block Chance while Dual Wielding or holding a Shield
  • 16% increased Physical Damage with Swords
  • 8% increased Attack Speed with Swords
  • +20 to Strength
Dervish
  • 2% additional Block Chance while Dual Wielding
  • 6% increased Attack Speed while Dual Wielding
  • 24% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
Gemini
  • 2% additional Block Chance while Dual Wielding
  • 15% increased Accuracy Rating while Dual Wielding
  • 20% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
Weapon Artistry
  • 4% increased Attack Speed
  • 2% additional Block Chance while Dual Wielding or holding a Shield
  • 16% increased Physical Damage with Attacks
  • +10 to Strength and Dexterity
Swagger
  • 2% additional Block Chance while Dual Wielding
  • 24% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding

Ascendancy passive skills

There are Ascendancy passive skills that grant dual wielding bonuses.

Ascendancy Class Name Bonuses
Gladiator
Gladiator avatar.png
One Handed Speed, Block Chance
  • 2% additional Block Chance while Dual Wielding or holding a Shield
  • 5% increased Attack Speed with One Handed Weapons
Gladiator
Gladiator avatar.png
Outmatch and Outlast
  • 25% chance to gain a Frenzy Charge on Kill with Main Hand
  • 25% chance to gain an Endurance Charge on Kill with Off Hand
  • 10% more Physical Damage while at maximum Frenzy Charges
  • 10% reduced Physical Damage taken while at maximum Endurance Charges

Strategy

Blocking

Passive skills

As of 2.1 there are the following passive clusters that provide block chance while Dual Wielding:

All of the dual wield block nodes are located in or near the Dexterity sector of the passive tree, making a critical strike build a natural choice. This is enhanced by the Twin Terrors cluster with its 125% critical strike chance and prime location between Bravado and Dervish.

There is a total of 27% additional block chance on the passive tree for a total of 42% possible block chance without items, or 38% if we discount Slashing Comeback which is gated behind five sword nodes and is thus prohibitively expensive for non-sword builds.

Items

Using a Maraketh dagger (i.e. Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "sai".), corrupting an item with a Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "vaal orb"., or crafting with Vagan, Weaponmaster can provide some additional block chance. Failing this, or if more flexibility in passives is desired, one or more of the following unique items may work:

  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "wings of entropy". (10% (Legacy)/8%): A popular choice due to allowing for 100% block chance applied to spells when combined with Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "stone of lazhwar". and Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "rainbowstride"..
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "the bringer of rain". (15% (Legacy)/6%): Helpful for reaching the block cap with Wings of Entropy, leading to the famous "Bringer of WoE" build.
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "the anvil". (10% (Legacy)/8%, +3% maximum): Precludes Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "stone of lazhwar"., severely limiting its effectiveness for non-Gladiators.
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "ungil's gauche". (20% (Legacy)/12%): A single Ungil's Gauche provides a large amount of block chance rivaling most shields, as well as a strong 90% increased global critical strike chance. However, its direct attack characteristics are not endgame viable, and are subpar even for Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "cast on critical strike". builds, delivering 10.47% base critical hits per second whereas rare daggers can exceed 18% with top rolls.
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "advancing fortress". (15%): Grants the highest block chance of all weapons, nice defensive bonuses, and a free Fortify gem. However, its damage output is subpar.
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "prismatic eclipse". (10% (Legacy)/8%): In addition to the block chance, Prismatic Eclipse can provide interesting socket bonuses, particularly 36% attack rate for a GGG version. However, it has a low base damage and its critical hit capability is even worse endgame than those of Ungil's Gauche.
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "essentia sanguis". (10% (Legacy)/8% with claws): Without improved critical strike chance, Essentia Sanguis is lacking in direct attack capability lategame.
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "mark of the doubting knight". (5%): Without improved critical strike chance, Mark of the Doubting Knight is lacking in direct attack capability lategame. At only 5% additional block chance, reaching the block cap will also likely require corrupted items and/or Master crafting.
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "scaeva". (8%): This weapon gains block chance when equipped in the off-hand. Compared to Prismatic Eclipse, while its socket bonuses are not as powerful, its base damage makes it usable for attacking. As a downside, equipping it on the off-hand sacrifices a large amount of potential critical strike chance.
  • Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "rigwald's command". (10%): While end-game viable for non-crit builds, it is a league-exclusive item and its bonuses are sub-optimal without axes, which lacks uniques that add block chance.

Most of the one-handed uniques above are all lacking in direct attack capability in the lategame, so it's advisable for users to wield them in the offhand and arrange to attack with the main hand only.

Spell block

Since there is no spell block on the passive tree for dual wielding, any spell block will have to come from either Ascendancy passive skills, items, or jewels.

Apart from corrupted items (which add a flat 2-4% to Spell Block only), the only way to get capped spell block is to use Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "stone of lazhwar"., Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "rainbowstride"., and Module Error: Item link: No results found for search parameter "wings of entropy".. Not using the last can still yield a respectable but not capped amount of spell block.

These Ascendancy passive skills grant bonuses to spell block:

Ascendancy Class Name Bonuses
Gladiator
Gladiator avatar.png
Versatile Combatant
  • 100% of Block Chance applied to Spells
Ascendant
Ascendant avatar.png
Gladiator
  • 30% of Block Chance applied to Spells
  • 5% additional Block Chance
  • Attacks have 20% chance to cause Bleeding
  • 30% increased Damage if you've killed a Bleeding Enemy Recently

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Mark_GGG (November 11, 2013 5:28 AM). "Double Strike + Dualwield = worst combo ever?". Path of Exile Forum. Retrieved November 11, 2013.