The Crucible returns! This will be all too will be familiar to players of DSII. You fight in an arena against waves of enemies. Amongst regular enemies there are some Boss-waves, with achievements related to them. You will also earn unique Crucible currency in the form of coins to purchase both regular and unique items.
The Crucible can be accessed fairly early in the main storyline, after you have defeated Avarice. On your next visit to Vulgrim, he will inform you that you have been invited to fight there. Initially the Crucible is capped, with higher levels unlocked as you progress in the main game. For this reason, it's best to leave it until near the end of the main campaign as Wave 101 is unlocked after the second Wrath fight. It could also be a challenge at lower levels.
The Crucible has 100 regular waves and a bonus wave 101, with an achievement linked to it. To access wave 101, you have to complete all the waves, starting from wave 1, in a single sitting. You can pause the game and every 5 waves Targon will ask if you want to continue and will wait indefinitely for your choice, so it is possible (and recommended!) to take breaks. Expect this to take between 1-2 hours.
To get to the Crucible, use a Serpent Hole. Under the Limbo tab on the left you will find it along with The Void that leads to the other paid DLC.
If you have followed the guide so far, you should be around level 60 at the end of your first playthrough. On Story difficulty that should be more than sufficient to see you to the top (literally).
Regular waves range from very simple, with some just having a few Skeletons and Swarm, to quite difficult, including Suffering and Trauma. While you will encounter some more difficult enemies in the higher waves, you will continue to get waves of easier enemies – these serve to refill your Nephilim's Respite. The drop rate for green Lurchers seems quite generous in the Crucible compared to main game.
Bosses occur at waves 25, 50, 75 and 100, with a bonus wave at 101. Each of these has a related achievement.
Use your Nephilim's Respite whenever you feel you need it, earlier rather then later. As mentioned above, you will regularly receive green Lurchers to refill them. Keep Havoc Form and your Wrath Attack for any times you feel like you might be in trouble, with the exception of the waves leading up to the Boss encounters mentioned above - you want Havoc Form for these. Try to avoid using other Shards as this will lower your score (discussed below).
Generally the waves shouldn't be too difficult. Occasionally the arena will shift, with raised platforms appearing - this is an indication that there will be ranged enemies in the next wave. If you start near one of the platforms, you should be out of range of at least some of the other enemies. The outer ring can either rise up or drop away, creating a smaller arena.
Every five waves, Targon will reappear in the centre. Approach him and you will have the option of continuing, quitting or visiting his shop (the shop is discussed below).
I recommend using some Havoc Shards for the last few waves, just because failure there means you have to replay the entire Crucible again from scratch. Make sure you have at least a few in your inventory before you start wave 1.
To start the fight, head forwards and talk to the figure in the centre of the arena, Targon. After some preamble you will be able to begin.Talking to him for the first time unlocks:
If you die, you will return to Targon. Initially you must restart again from wave 1. Once you complete a boss wave, you have the option of restarting from that point. For example, if you die on level 61 then you can start again from level 50, 25 or 1. Starting from anything other than wave 1 will, however, lock you out of wave 101 and its associated achievement.
There is some good armour to be earned here, so if you are struggling you can farm coins on the lower waves and then buy some new armour which will help.
Speaking of which, the coin system is a little complicated. The most important thing to know is that coins are only awarded when you voluntarily leave when talking to Targon or when you complete wave 100. If you quit out or die, you lose whatever you have earned up to that point.
You’ll earn coins based on the points you earn during the waves and your performance as follows. Note that you can both earn and lose points.
|+50|| Cumulative bonus per consecutive 5 waves*|
|+250|| Take no damage during a regular wave|
|+625|| Take no damage during a Boss wave|
|-50% of total|| An Undying Shard is triggered during the wave|
|Reset to 0|| Change the difficulty at the menu at any time|
|Reset to 0|| Die or quit out (from the menu) at any time|
|-125|| Use a consumable - eg. a Heal Shard (excluding Nephilim's Respite)|
*So for waves 5-10 you will receive an additional 50 points per wave. From 10-15 it goes up to 100 points and so on.
For every 1000 points you earn, you will receive 1 Crucible Coin.
What all this means in real terms is that a full run on Story Mode will likely net you between 60-75 coins. Remember that if you are going for all the achievements in a single run, you will not see any coins until after you have completed wave 100. Don’t be worried if you visit Targon’s shop and have nothing to spend.
Once you have obtained some coins. you can buy regular items like Artifacts and Adamantine. Other items are unlocked by reaching a certain wave - Targon has an unlimited supply of Essence of a Chosen (Cost: 50 coins, Unlocked @ wave 50) and Chunks of Adamantine (Cost: 50 coins, Unlocked @ wave 75). With access to these, it is theoretically be possible to upgrade all your weapons to level 11 (more on that in a moment) if you were to play through the Crucible over and over (but there is no need to do that, thankfully!)
More interesting are the special items. There are three sets of quite powerful armour and a new Enhancement linked to each of your four Hollows.
| COST|| DESCRIPTION|
|Chaos Bringer’s Armor ||50||60|
+10% Physical Damage
+10% Physical Damage Reduction
|Reaper’s Shadow Mail||75||60|
+13% Arcane Damage
+10% Lurchers When Killing An Enemy
+60% Health Regenerated Per Minute
|Panoply of Champions (Armor) ||100||60|
+11% Amount Of Havoc Bar Generated Per Minute
+120% Havoc Form Duration
+30% Wrath Reward From Wrath Lurchers
|Unfocused Flame Enhancement ||25||30|
+5% Chance To Ignite Target
+10% Flame Wrath Form Enkindle Range
|Unfocused Storm Enhancement||50||30|
+20% Weapon Damage Chains Lightning to nearby Targets
+10% Storm Wrath Tornado Duration
|Unfocused Force Enhancements||75||30|
+5% Weapon Attack Speed
+10% Force Wrath Attack Damage
|Unfocused Stasis Enhancement||100||30|
+10% Counter Attack Stasis Duration
+10% Stasis Wrath Form Duration
Once you have all the achievements, there should be no need to replay The Crucible unless you want to. Completing all 100 waves should grant sufficient coins to purchase one of the armours. The Panoply of Champions completes the Havoc-focused equipment which is suggested for use during your Apocalyptic/NG+ playthrough.
Remember that once you start NG+, you will be on Apocalyptic difficulty so The Crucible will be more difficult. If you like the look of multiple items, better to get them now.
The enemies on each wave are listed here. There are also notes about the changing arena.
Wave 1: Baby Chain Spiders, Minions and Swarm
Wave 2: Swarm, Minions and Mosquitoes
Wave 3: (two platforms rise) Swarm, Minions, Mosquitoes and one Skeleton Archer
Wave 4: Chain Spiders, Swarm and one Skeleton Archer
Wave 5: (two platforms lower) Chain Spiders, Minions and Mosquitoes
Wave 6: Minions and one Ranged Sycophant
Wave 7: (two platforms rise) two Ranged and two Regular Minions
Wave 8: Skeletons and one Skeleton Archer
Wave 9: (switches to four platforms) Minions and two Skeleton Archers
Wave 10: Skeletons, Ranged Minions and Ranged Sycophants
Wave 11: (wall rise for smaller arena, platforms lower) Skeletons and Swarm
Wave 12: Skeletons and one Armoured Skeleton
Wave 13: Skeletons and one Armoured Skeleton
Wave 14: Minions and one Alpha Sloth Minion
Wave 15: Brood Mother and one Skeleton Archer
Wave 16: (Arena back to full size) Chain Spiders, Mosquitoes and Minions
Wave 17: (two platforms rise) Skeletons and four Skeleton Archers
Wave 18: Minion, two Armoured Skeletons, one Skeleton Archer
Wave 19: Swarm, Skeletons, two Lava Abominations
Wave 20: (two platforms lower) Ranged Sycophants, Minions, Alpha Sloth Minion
Wave 21: (outer ring drops away for a smaller arena) two Lava Abominations, two Armoured Skeletons
Wave 22: three Ranged Sycophants and two Lava Abominations
Wave 23: one Suffering
Wave 24: Swarm, Skeletons and one Lava Abomination
Wave 25: Gor Boss – a large Lava Brute. Rather than the area attack like the Brutes do, Gor summons an eruption attack. Otherwise fights the same and still explodes on death. Defeating Gor unlocks:
Wave 26: (Full size arena) Minions and Swarm
Wave 27: Minions and Swarm
Wave 28: (two platforms rise) Ranged and Regular Minions, one Cloaked Sycophant
Wave 29: (two platforms lower) Ranged and Cloaked Sycophants, Minions
Wave 30: Ranged, Cloaked and Teleporting Sycophants
Wave 31: (walls rise for a smaller arena) Skeletons, Swarm and one Armoured Skeleton
Wave 32: two Armoured Skeletons and Mosquitoes
Wave 33: Ranged and Cloaked Sycophants, one Minion
Wave 34: two Mimics, Baby Chain Spiders
Wave 35: two Mimics, Brood Mother
Wave 36: (full size arena) Skeletons, Swarm
Wave 37: Baby Chain Spiders, one Spider Demon
Wave 38: (two platforms rise) Minions, Ranged Minions
Wave 39: (two platforms lower) two Spider Demon, two Minions
Wave 40: two Teleporting Sycophants
Wave 41: (outer ring lowers for small arena) Skeletons, one Armoured Skeleton
Wave 42: two Mimics, Mosquitoes
Wave 43: two Mimics, Spider Demon
Wave 44: four Armoured Skeletons
Wave 45: Ranged and Regular Minions, Alpha Sloth Minion
Wave 46: Chain Spider, Minions, Skeletons
Wave 47: Ranged Sycophant, Cloaked Sycophant, Teleporting Sycophant
Wave 48: two Lava Abominations, Lava Brute
Wave 49: Swarm, Skeletons
Wave 50: Sherhaal Boss – a spider queen. In addition to regular attacks, will quickly rear up and shoot a red laser attack at you (difficult to dodge). Completing this wave unlocks:
Wave 51: (full size arena) Swarm
Wave 52: Regular and Ranged Swarm, Undead Angel
Wave 53: (two platforms rise) Ranged and Regular Swarm, Undead Angel
Wave 54: (two platforms lower) Undead Angels, Angel
Wave 55: Angels, Undead Angel
Wave 56: (outer ring rises for a small arena) Stingers
Wave 57: Angels, Stingers
Wave 58: Undead Angels, Angels
Wave 59: Angels
Wave 60: Scribe, Angels
Wave 61: (outer ring drops for a full-size arena) Swarm, Deep Lurker
Wave 62: Angels, Deep Lurkers
Wave 63: Undead Angels, Spectral Undead Angel
Wave 64: Angels, Spectral Undead Angels
Wave 65: Spectral Undead Angels, Spectral Angel Brute
Wave 66: (outer ring drops for a small arena) Swarm, Ranged Swarm, Angel
Wave 67: Undead Angels
Wave 68: Swarm, Skeleton
Wave 69: Undead Angel, Angelic Beast
Wave 70: Deep Lurkers, Angelic Beast
Wave 71: Minions, Stingers
Wave 72: two Spectral Angel Brutes, Teleporting Sycophant
Wave 73: Suffering, Angelic Beast
Wave 74: Skeletons, Swarm
Wave 75: Rastion Boss - similar to the Angelic Champion and will be supported by several Angels. His defeat unlocks:
Wave 76: (outer ring rises for a full-size arena) Miner Demon, Phantom Guard
Wave 77: Miner Demon, Phantom Guard, two Spider-Crab
Wave 78: (two platforms rise) Phantom Guard, Spider-Crab, Demon Spearmen
Wave 79: (four platforms rise) Explosive Demon Spearmen, Phantom Guard
Wave 80: (platforms lower) Phantom Guard, Miner Demon
Wave 81: Demon Spearmen, Stingers, Spider-Crab
Wave 82: Stingers, Phantom Guard
Wave 83: (two platforms rise) Explosive and regular Demon Spearmen, Ranged and Cloaked Sycophant
Wave 84: (platforms lower) Phantom Guard, Deep Lurker, Scribe
Wave 85: Phantom Guard, Spectral Undead Angels, Angelic Beast
Wave 86: (outer ring drops for a small arena) Skeletons, Swarm
Wave 87: Spider-Crabs, Chain Spiders
Wave 88: Phantom Guard
Wave 89: Lava Abomination, Angels, Cloaked Sycophant
Wave 90: Explosive Demon Spearman, Spectral Undead Angel, Alpha Sloth Minion, Trauma
Wave 91: (outer ring rises for a full-size arena) Skeletons, Swarm
Wave 92: (four platforms rise) Ranged Minion, Explosive Demon Spearman, Skeleton Archer, Lava Abomination
Wave 93: (four platforms lower) Undead Angel, Armoured Skeleton, Phantom Guard, Minion, Spectral Angel
Wave 94: Minion, Undead Angel, Phantom Guard
Wave 95: Spectral Angel Brutes, Teleporting Sycophant
Wave 96: (outer ring drops for a small arena) Undead Angel, Angelic Beast, Teleporting Sycophant
Wave 97: Spider Demon, Lava Abomination, Lava Brute
Wave 98: Skeletons, Swarm
Wave 99: Trauma, Skeletal Archers, Suffering
Wave 100: Urul Boss – another hard-hitting demon like Abraxis or Wrath. In addition to some brutal ranged and melee attacks, he has a deadly attack where a short scene plays and he grabs Fury, leaving you with just a sliver of health.
For this reason, don’t muck around. I recommend Havoc Form right away. This is a two-phase battle and it’s worth using a Havoc Shard so you can use Havoc Form again in the second phase. Remember that dying here means you have to play through all 100 waves again to access the bonus Wave. Once Urul falls, you’ll unlock:
Hopefully you made it through in one go. Speak to Targon again. You will be rewarded your Crucible Coins depending on your score. Just by getting to Wave 100 in a single run, you should have over 60 coins. If so, carefully choose “Let me see your wares.” (don’t choose to leave the fight!)
Press once to the Specials tab and purchase the Panoply of Champions armour for 60 coins.
Now choose to fight on. Equip your new armour immediately. Wait for your Havoc Form to recharge before proceeding.
The arena will change and several platforms will rise up around the edges. Jump onto the lowest one then look back across the arena. Use the shimmering Swing Point to get across to the higher platform opposite. Turn right and use another Swing Point up again. Look across the arena and use another Swing Point.
Now Flame Jump up to the left where a Wind Storm will take you to the final Crucible battle. Make sure you are ready before Storm Gliding up.
Up here you will meet Wicked Killington, aka Wicked K, the final Boss. He has a range of fast and unusual attacks. The first phase should be manageable as he doesn't inflict massive damage but be very cautious. Half way through he will start to split into three. This is another battle where you don’t want to mess around. I recommend using another Havoc Shard and just spamming Havoc Form throughout the battle. Remember, you have to repeat the entire Crucible if you die here!
On defeat, you will receive a Wicked Adamantine, which you can use to upgrade a weapon to +11, and unlock:
Carefully jump back down to the arena below. Speak to Targon one last time to complete the DLC and open the path back to the Serpent Hole. Look for a bridge to appear at the edge of the arena. You should be able to reach Level 61 when you feed your souls to Vulgrim.
Optionally you can replay the Crucible again to earn more Crucible Coins.
If you are following the recommended path, take the Serpent Hole to Limbo: The Void where you will start the Keepers of the Void.
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