Ribcracker is a unique exceptional staff.
Ribcracker is unusual compared to most staves in that it is meant for physical use rather than skill bonuses; this is indicated by its unusually high damage and durability. With enhanced damage, an impressive chance of Crushing Blow, and increased Attack Speed, Ribcracker is a powerful weapon and often upgraded to a Stalagmite for more crushing power.
Still, despite its bonuses, compared to many unique axes and swords Ribcracker may be overshadowed. Finding physical fighters that specialize in staves is rare, after all, since although characters such as Barbarians have Axe Mastery or Sword Mastery, and Assassins have Claw Mastery, no character has a "Staff Mastery," nor any physical skill specifically meant for staff use. Also, the insane damage is physical attribute, so monsters with sufficient Physical resistance, like Uniques with Stone Skin, may be more troublesome for trivial gains.
It must also be remembered that Ribcracker is exclusively a two-handed weapon. Although some unique staves (such as Razorswitch) offer Resistances, Ribcracker does not; since a character using Ribcracker cannot benefit from the additional defense of a shield, physical fighters using it in Nightmare or Hell may find themselves dangerously vulnerable in the fray of battle.
Ribcracker is good for a Bear Druid, as the bonuses and drawbacks are balanced by his form. A Barbarian specializing in Mace-type weaponry can also benefit from Ribcracker, as they do receive bonuses to use with staves from Mace Mastery, and having access to Natural Resistance, although later on, he'll find better weaponry.
Perhaps to compensate, Ribcracker offers a faster Hit Recovery as well as a great boost to Defense, effectively doubling it. When compounded with the effect of powerful armor and even an aura such as Defiance, defense can be boosted to more than effective levels, giving physical fighters a modicum of safety as long as there are no opposing spellcasters.
Required Level: 31
Required Strength: 25
Judging from the stats on the Ribcracker, one could surmise that it may have been a reference, if unintended, to the Monk from the Hellfire expansion for the original Diablo. He specialized in staff use, to the point of increased damage with staves, faster attack speed, and even able to protect himself better while wielding a staff, all of which are shown to some extent in the magical properties on this staff.
|Diablo II Unique Staves|
| Normal Staves — Bane Ash (Short Staff) • Serpent Lord (Long Staff) • Spire of Lazarus (Gnarled Staff) • The Salamander (Battle Staff) • The Iron Jang Bong (War Staff)|
Exceptional Staves — Razorswitch (Jo Staff) • Ribcracker (Quarterstaff) • Chromatic Ire (Cedar Staff) • Warpspear (Gothic Staff) • Skull Collector - (Rune Staff)
Elite Staves — Ondal's Wisdom - (Elder Staff) • Mang Song's Lesson (Archon Staff)
Quest Items — Staff of Kings • Horadric Staff