"All of creation cares not whether you live or die."
The Crucible is an arena challenge where you are assaulted by numerous enemies in four stages of 25 waves each. It is unlocked once you’ve defeated the Guardian at the end of the Forge Lands. You can access the Crucible from any realm. You receive special rewards for reaching milestones within the Crucible, for information about these items, read our guide. The Crucible ends at level 75 on your first playthrough; you need to play a New Game+ to be able to play levels 76-101.
- Heartstone Talisman Wave 1-25
- Abyssal Boots Wave 26-50
- Barbed Defilers Wave 51-75
- Abyssal Spaulders Wave 76-100
- Assassin Talisman Wave 76-100
- Elemental Talisman Wave 101 - Must Defeat Wicked K
- Aftermath Complete All 100 Waves in One Sitting.
- The Fool
It unlocks Waves 1-25 and you get it once you have defeated the Guardian.
- The Emperor
It unlocks Waves 26-50 and you get it once you have defeated the Wailing Host.
It unlocks Waves 51-75 and you get it once you have defeated Samael.
- The Devil
It unlocks Waves 76-100 and you get it after advancing your character to Level 25.
It unlocks Wave 101 and you get it after you have cleared Waves 1-100 in a single visit to the Crucible.
- The World
You get it after you have defeated Wicked K in Wave 101.
Recommended Crucible BuildsEdit
If you aim to clear the Crucible, you might have to Respec your character by visiting Vulgrim and create a new character that is capable enough to clear the challenges you will face in this combat arena. The developer, Vigil Games, has recommended this build for the Crucible Mode in Darksiders 2 but it shouldn’t stop from experimenting yourself.
- Attributes to Boost: Strength and Critical Damage
- Secondary Weapon: Heavy Hammer or Axe
- Harbinger Skills (13): Teleport Slash (3), Immolation (1), Unending Fury (3), Inescapable (3), Rage of the Grave (3)
- Necromancer Skills (12): Exhume (3), Undying (3), Enervation (3), Death's Allure (3)
Another easy alternative is to use a combo of a wrath stealing (preferable on scythes) and a health stealing weapon (preferably Achinda's fangs). Then use "Aegis Guard" (make sure that you have "Grounding" in the Aegis Guard sub tree). It may be recommended to max out Aegis Guard and Grounding in the Necromancer stats. Invest a point in "Reflect" too. Then as you are fighting, keep using Aegis Guard, it will tremendously increase defence and resistance while dealing lightning damage to nearby enemies as well. Use your weapons in combinations depending on whether you want to steal health, wrath or both.
Alternate Crucible BuildEdit
This is an easy to use skill and gear setup that will allow you to clear waves 1-75 with relative ease. You can start using the build at level 20, as soon as you get Frenzy, and then fill it out as you go.
- Teleport Slash (1-3)
- Unstoppable (3)
- Inevitibility (3)
- Empowerment (3)
- Killing Blow (3)
- Call of the Grave (3)
- Murder (3)
- Bless (3)
- Ice Crows (3)
- Frenzy (3)
Remaining skill points can be put whereever you please. Ghouls would supplement the build well, but are high upkeep.
Possessed Scythes -
- Wrath Steal - Key stat. You can get this via "Legacy Artifacts" aka Legacy Talismans from Vulgrim, as you probably won't find any weapons with wrath steal that you can sacrifice at level 20.
- Critical Hit Chance - Key stat. Synergizes with Achidna's Fangs special ability.
- Lightning/Shock or Ice Damage - Damage increase and chance for temporary stun. Ice can cause targetting issues, I recommend lightning or shock. (Shock, apparently, has higher chance to stun, but lower damage)
- (Optional) Execute Chance - Very useful early on, becomes less useful at later levels.
- (Optional) Health Steal - Just as hard to find as Wrath Steal, early on, and redundant if using Achidna's Fangs.
Secondary Weapon: Achidna's Fangs
We use Achidna's Fangs because the special ability steals a large percentage of HP on critical hit, and strangely also applies to your primary weapon. This may be a bug, but since THQ isn't around to patch it, exploit away.
A combination of wrath steal, high critical chance, and Achidna's Fangs means that so long as you are doing damage, you are going to be at full health and full wrath. Use your wrath for Frenzy -> Murder -> Unstoppable. Unstoppable becomes less and less useful as you get to the higher levels, but is better than other options. Aegis Guard is also an option, but it may not be as useful, even with the Arcane boost.
Frenzy is your key ability, and it's boosted by Arcane and the arcane critical stats. A talisman with Arcane/Arcane Crit/Arcane Crit Damage/Critical Chance is recommended. Frenzy not only damages enemies, but will knock smaller enemies into the air, completely disabling them, and disrupt some larger enemies like Gorewood and Skeletal Champions. Murder is a supplemental ability, and functions similarily, if somewhat less effectively. Unstoppable, if you use it, provides a large strength and critical hit chance boost, which further increases your life and wrath steal.
The point of the build is semi-passive, self-targetting abiltiies combined with a life and wrath stealing primary attacks. While you're attacking your focus target, your frenzy spirits and crows are constantly attacking everything around you. If you opted for a high execution chance, use it as often as you can, as frenzy and murder both continue to kill while you are invulnerable while executing.
How To Clear The CrucibleEdit
As you can see, completing the Crucible is quite a feat. Knowledge is power, so use the following table, along with the in-depth guidelines of fighting tough enemies:
Crucible: Stage I (Recommended Level: 15-20)Edit
- Wave 1 – 3 Construct Warriors
- Wave 2 – 5 Construct Warriors
- Wave 3 – 3 Construct Adjuncts and 3 Construct Warriors
- Wave 4 – A Construct Champion and 2 Construct Adjuncts
- Wave 5 – 2 Construct Champions
- Wave 6 – 10 Stingers
- Wave 7 – 4 Prowlers
- Wave 8 – 9 Prowlers
- Wave 9 – A Stalker and 10 Stingers
- Wave 10 – 2 Stalkers and 3 Prowlers
- Wave 11 – 5 Tainted Construct Adjuncts
- Wave 12 – A Construct Sentinel and 3 Tainted Construct Warriors
- Wave 13 – A Tainted Construct Champion and 5 Tainted Construct Warriors
- Wave 14 – A Construct Sentinel and 2 Tainted Construct Champions
- Wave 15 – Gharn and 4 Tainted Construct Warriors
- Wave 16 – 30 Stingers
- Wave 17 – 2 Savage Prowlers and 4 Tainted Construct Adjuncts
- Wave 18 – A Savage Stalker and 5 Stingers
- Wave 19 – A Tainted Construct Champion and a Savage Stalker
- Wave 20 – 2 Savage Stalkers and a Tainted Construct Champion
- Wave 21 – 3 Tainted Construct Champions
- Wave 22 – Corrupted Custodian
- Wave 23 – Gorewood
- Wave 24 – Gharn and Ghorn
- Wave 25 – Gorewood and 2 Tainted Construct Champions
From Wave 1 to 5, you’ll be tossed a bunch of Construct enemies of different types (ranging from the basic Construct Warrior to the Construct Champion) to fight against. This shouldn’t be too much of a problem if you have decent enough equipment and good specs.
In these waves, try to focus on the lesser threat first. So, in ordinance of preference, you would go like Construct Warrior, then Construct Adjunct, and then Construct Champion in the last. Always focus the Champs in the last so you can pay your full attention. Watch out for the attacks of the Champions – dodge them, deal damage, and then dodge again.
From Waves 6-10, you’ll encounter some Stingers, Stalkers and Prowlers. These are fairly easy to get rid of, especially the Stingers. In any relevant wave, you should always focus on the Stalkers first, and then the other enemy types. Note that Stalkers can’t be Deathgripped, so use it instead on the lesser enemies while you slash away at them.
Waves 11 to 15 bring in more Constructs – this time they’re some Tainted ones, and also Sentinels. Again, in any given wave with Champions, try to take out the other Construct enemies first while keeping in view the Construct Champions. Make sure you don’t get overwhelmed; otherwise the combined attacks of lesser enemies and more powerful enemies may finish you off in seconds.
When you encounter the Sentinel, shoot him first and then go to the Champions. For wave 15, Gharn can go kamikaze, so it’s best to force it into doing so; combine it with a witty dodge to save yourself, and then focus on the Tainted Construct.
Wave 18 can be a little difficult because of the overpowered Savage Stalker. Quickly dispatch the Stingers with your Redemption, and then focus on the Stalker as if it were a boss. In wave 20, once one of the Stalkers fall to around 50% health, the Construct Champ (tainted version) will spawn. Deal with the Champ first, and then resume your go with the Stalkers.
For Wave 22, the Corrupted Custodian’s only real threatening attack is the whirlwind spin it does. He will turn around clockwise to initiate it, so immediately dodge and run away to avoid getting hurt badly. Once he’s done with that, the rest of its attacks are quite predictable. Be careful of Ghorn and Gharn in wave 24, and watch out for Ghorn’s lava attacks – dodge them when he channels the attack (by pounding the ground), and be very careful of Ghorn’s explosion, as it causes fire-damage afterwards.
Wave 25 is ridiculous because if you are grabbed by Gorewood’s roots while near a Champ, you are doomed. Make sure that DOES NOT happen. Otherwise, it seems to be a fairly easy fight. If you have invested 3 points into Aegis Guard, then this can fully block the damage received by Gorewood's roots once he catches you while the shield is active. So keep the shield active during the fight to make it even easier.
Crucible: Stage II (Recommended Level: 20-25)Edit
- Wave 26 – 3 Skeletons
- Wave 27 – 5 Skeletal Archers
- Wave 28 – 4 Skeletal Warriors and 2 Skeletal Archers
- Wave 29 – 2 Skeletal Champions and 5 Skeletal Warriors
- Wave 30 – 3 Skeletal Champions
- Wave 31 – 5 Nightmare Prowlers
- Wave 32 – 2 Nightmare Stalkers and 4 Nightmare Prowlers
- Wave 33 – A Skeletal Champion and 4 Nightmare Prowlers
- Wave 34 – 2 Skeletal Champions and a Nightmare Stalker
- Wave 35 – 2 Undead Generals
- Wave 36 – 5 Wraiths
- Wave 37 – A Lich and 3 Wraiths
- Wave 38 – 20 Scarabs
- Wave 39 – 3 Lichs
- Wave 40 – 8 Scarabs and 2 Scarab Hulks
- Wave 41 – 4 Skeletal Champions
- Wave 42 – An Abomination and 3 Wraiths
- Wave 43 – 3 Abominations
- Wave 44 – 2 Scarab Hulks
- Wave 45 – A Bone Giant
- Wave 46 – An Undead General and 2 Skeletal Champions
- Wave 47 – Tormentor
- Wave 48 – A Bone Giant and 2 Skeletal Champions
- Wave 49 – An Undead General and Tormentor
- Wave 50 – Tormentor and a Bone Giant
This level is all about skeletons, nightmarish creatures, and a few other baddies like the Wraiths and Liches. The first few waves (26-30) are fairly easy, as you’ll fight Skeleton Warriors, Skeleton Archers, and Skeleton Champions. Make sure to take out the Archers first – making this a rule of thumb for any wave involving them.
This is because the Archers deal a good amount of damage, tend to have a good aim, and they always stay far away. Finish them off, and then concentrate on the melee foes.
From Waves 31-35, you’ll come across some Nightmare Prowlers. Deathgrip works great against prowlers, and these variants are no exception. The Nightmare Stalkers on the other hand are something different. These guys do a good amount of damage, and their size can be overwhelming when combined with Skeleton Champions, as is the case with wave 34. Equipment that can freeze your foes is ultra useful here.
On Wave 35, you’ll come across two Undead Guardians. These shouldn’t be a problem by themselves, because they are sort of slow and their attacks can be dodged easily.
Wave 36-40 introduces you to the more grotesque enemies, such as the Lich, Tormentors, Scarabs, and their Hulk variants. You should try and focus on Liches first in whichever wave they are encountered. Wave 38 might seem intimidating with 20 Scarabs, but these guys can be shot with Redemption easily.
The real thing to look out for is wave 40. Kill the Scarabs first, and then go after the Scarab Hulks. Avoid their jumps and make sure you don’t get caught by another Scarab Hulk when one blocks your attacks. Just be patient, dodge, attack, and you should be able to get rid of them.
For Waves 41-45, you’ll face some more Scarab Hulks, Skeletons, and also Abominations. Be careful of the AoE damage of the Abominations, as that can suck up your health real fast. However, getting close will automatically put you in their AoE radius, so you’ll have to slice your way through while taking constant damage. Thus, it’s best to fight the rest and then focus on the Abominations.
Wave 45 is a joke wave with the solo Bone Giant. The beast shouldn’t be much of an issue at all by itself, so just slice away at it. Waves 46-50 are also ridiculously easy – you’ve faced much meaner stuff than this before, so this should really be a cakewalk.
Crucible: Stage III (Recommended Level: 25-30)Edit
- Wave 51 – 3 Corrupted Angels
- Wave 52 – 2 Ayfids
- Wave 53 – 3 Corrupted Angels and an Ayfid
- Wave 54 – A Corrupted Champion and 4 Corrupted Angels
- Wave 55 – 3 Corrupted Champions
- Wave 56 – 8 Corrupted Construct Warriors
- Wave 57 – 2 Sycophants and 3 Corrupted Construct Adjuncts
- Wave 58 – 2 Corrupted Champions and 4 Corrupted Angels
- Wave 59 – 10 Corrupted Angels
- Wave 60 – 3 Sycophants
- Wave 61 – 16 Undead Scarabs
- Wave 62 – 4 Undead Prowlers and 5 Undead Scarabs
- Wave 63 – An Undead Scarab Hulk and 3 Nightmare Prowlers
- Wave 64 – 3 Undead Stalkers
- Wave 65 – 2 Undead Scarab Hulks
- Wave 66 – 3 Legion Soldiers
- Wave 67 – A Legion Champion and a Legion Soldier
- Wave 68 – 4 Legion Soldiers
- Wave 69 – A Maelstrom and 2 Legion Soldiers
- Wave 70 – A Maelstrom, a Legion Champion, and 2 Legion Soldiers
- Wave 71 – 12 Ice Skeletons
- Wave 72 – 3 Nightmare Prowlers and 5 Ice Skeletons
- Wave 73 – A Maelstrom and 3 Nightmare Prowlers
- Wave 74 – A Maelstrom and 2 Nightmare Stalkers
- Wave 75 – The Deposed King
Level 4 starts off with some simple waves, but gets more and more difficult, and includes wave 70, which is one of the toughest waves in the Crucible.
Waves 51-55 are quite simple, with Corrupted Angels and a few Ayfids. You’ll fight an Ayfid and a few Corrupted Angels in wave 53, in which you should focus on slaying the Ayfid first. The rest of the waves in this set of 5 are really simple.
Wave 56-60 can also be quite simple. Though, you should be wary of the Sycophants. They generally have low health, but what makes them dangerous is the shock they release after dying, which can be very damaging. Be careful about this especially in Wave 57, as after two Sycophants you will also fight three Corrupted Construct Adjuncts.
In Wave 58, make sure you kill the Angels first, and then go over to the Corrupted Champion. Make sure those Champs don’t deal out too much damage before the Angels fall. Wave 59 is sort of harsh because of the sheer number of the enemies. Just rely on your agility and reflexes and take them out.
From Waves 61 to 65, you’ll be revisited by enhanced versions of older enemies; try to keep the formula the same as before. Things don’t get hefty until wave 66. Wave 66 gives you 3 Legion Soldiers to fight against. These guys can do a hell lot of damage, so make sure you are avoiding attacks and dealing damage.
Wave 67 is sort of similar, except that it has a Legion Champion, which does even more damage. Take out the Solider first, and then focus on the Champ. Go full-out offensive against the Champ, and when it blocks, use Harvest. Similarly, wave 68 gives you 5 Legion Soldiers to fight against.
Waves 69 and 70 are quite tough. In wave 69, you’ll face the Maelstrom, which is a very deadly enemy. Focus on this guy first before the Soldiers, and make sure you do not get hit by its Fire Orbs ability. This enemy is tough, but what is tougher is wave 70.
Wave 70 is super-difficult because of the combination of the Legion Champion and the Maelstrom, two of the strongest enemies you have faced so far. The Soldier seems like a child in front of these two. The best bet against these guys is the Reaper form.
If you don’t have Reaper energy, then you should look to avoid the Champion’s attacks as much as you can, and destroy the Maelstrom before his Fire ability makes you go nuts. Be patient, be strong, and hopefully you will manage to conquer both of these tough foes.
After that tough wave, you’ll be greeted by some pretty average enemies in wave 71 and 72. Wave 72 can become a little difficult if you aren’t careful about getting frozen. The Nightmare Prowlers do some good bit of damage, so if you are caught frozen you can really have a bad time. Make sure that doesn’t happen.
Wave 73 is another difficult wave because it combines the annoying Maelstrom and the Nightmare Prowlers. If you are frozen, then you can kiss yourself goodbye because the Maelstrom will destroy you in a matter of seconds. Don’t let that happen.
This is by many considered the hardest wave of the Crucible because of this deadly enemy combination. Focus on the Prowlers, and make sure you are not getting hit. Be very speedy and very precise about your movements and attacks, and when (and if) the Prowlers go down, go all out against the Maelstrom.
Wave 74 is not as difficult as 73 or even 70, but it is still quite tough. The Nightmare Stalkers are fairly annoying with the Maelstrom. Focus on killing the Stalkers first, and then dish out damage to the Maelstrom.
Wave 75 has none other than the Deposed King himself. You have to be witty at reading his move patterns, and act accordingly. Below 50% health, he starts doing a random whirlwind move. Be VERY careful of that one. If you are good at dodging (which you should be since you have survived some super tough waves), this guy isn’t all too difficult.
Crucible: Stage IV (Recommended Level: 30)Edit
- Wave 76 – 3 Skeleton Warriors
- Wave 77 – 5 Undead Prowlers, 5 Skeletal Warriors
- Wave 78 – 5 Skeletal Champions
- Wave 79 – 3 Skeletal Champions, 4 Undead Prowlers
- Wave 80 – 3 Undead Stalkers, 5 Skeletal Archers
- Wave 81 – 4 Wraiths
- Wave 82 – 1 Abomination, 3 Wraiths
- Wave 83 – 1 Sycophant, 3 Skeletal Champions
- Wave 84 – 2 Sycophants, 1 Abomination
- Wave 85 – 3 Tormentors
- Wave 86 – 1 Corrupted Champion, 3 Corrupted Angels
- Wave 87 – 6 Fleshbursters
- Wave 88 – 2 Corrupted Champions
- Wave 89 – 12 Fleshbursters
- Wave 90 – 3 Ayfids
- Wave 91 – 8 Corrupted Angels
- Wave 92 – 2 Maelstroms
- Wave 93 – 1 Legion Champion, 3 Legion Soldiers
- Wave 94 – 1 Maelstrom, 1 Corrupted Champion
- Wave 95 – 1 Legion Champion, 1 Maelstrom
- Wave 96 – Corrupted Custodian
- Wave 97 – Gorewood
- Wave 98 – 2 Bone Giants
- Wave 99 – The Suffering
- Wave 100 – The Avatar of Chaos
Now, we’re at the last final set of waves.
Waves 76 and 77 give you some relaxation, throwing in a few average Skeletal Warriors and Prowlers. Things start to pick up by level 80, with the Skeletal Archers and the Skeletal Stalkers. The Stalkers do a hell lot of damage, so be really careful about them while you are eliminating the Archers.
You’ll then be revisited by some older enemies in the next few waves, and things are fairly simple till wave 95, which throws in that nasty Maelstrom + Legion Champion combo again. You don’t have any Soldiers to worry about here, but the combination of the two is still deadly as before, and you’ll have to be super-careful to not absorb damage from both simultaneously.
Afterwards, you’ll be against some pretty slow enemies in some waves, such as those old Bone Giants and what-not.
But Wave 99 will pit you against the Suffering. That is one mean thing there. Its melee combo will be sending you off to the bottomless pits of hell, so make sure you dodge it at ALL costs. Only attack him after his lunge, but be VERY conservative and careful. This battle can ensue for quite a while because of the patience required. Play safe, and hopefully you will defeat him.
Once you are done with him, prepare to meet The Avatar of Chaos in wave 100. Every attack has the potential to kill you immediately or at least send you to the brink of death, and because of that, you have to be crazy-careful.
First off, make sure you avoid sweeping attacks initially. Wait for him to lunge before doing any damage. Don’t be too greedy with how much health you chop off during your every attempt. When he is down to 80% health, he will start throwing axes and summoning corruption vines. Avoid them with whatever you’ve got. Teleport Slash comes in really handy here. Wait till after the vines and the lunge to do damage.
When he reaches around half health, he will start using all of his attacks, including the most deadly one: Impale. On higher difficulties, this has the potential to kill you immediately, so AVOID IT AT ALL COSTS. Breathe, be patient, dodge like crazy, chip off his health whenever you can (but don’t over-extend your onslaught) and you might just make it.
If you had the patience and the skills to complete all 100 waves in one sitting, you will have the chance to go at the 101st wave, which has Wicked K. In order to reach Wicked K however, you must have acquired Death Grip from the main story. If you did not aquire Death Grip yet, then you will be unable to Face Wicked K.
Mr. Wicked K seems to be immune to melee damage at times – it seems to happen completely randomly. Along with that, he has some ridiculous abilities that can do insane amounts of damage. The downside about this battle is not its difficulty, but the fact that it is stupidly boring.
He can kill you in one or two hits, but if you are looking to survive, the only way that seems to work is using Redemption from a distance and using Teleport Slash and Harvest over and over. You could also consider using Reaper Mode if your Reaper bar is filled, but otherwise this is a terribly tedious and difficult battle, especially on higher difficulties. Good luck! (Wrath Steal & Frenzy=15sec win at lvl25)