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Diablo II Single Player Thread - 2

Discussion in 'Diablo 1 & 2' started by dmc, Jan 27, 2010.

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  1. dmc

    dmc Speak softly and carry a big briefcase Staff Member Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    Just so you know on the weapon switch thing - if my necro summons his whole army of 14 skellies and 7 mages, and then weapons switches away from the Arm of King Leoric, several skellies and mages are immediately wasted. The remainder may have whatever life they started with (or not, I don't know), but I no longer have 14 skellies and 7 mages, I do know that.
     
  2. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    I did know about that - in fact that was even mentioned in the Fishymancer guide. Specifically, it said if you use an item that gives +skills (or if you touch a skill shrine) it may enable you to cast additional skeleton(s). If you switch, or if the shrine expires, you'll lose that extra skeleton, but the remaining skeletons maintain the level they were summoned at. Similarly, if a druid uses a skill shrine for a summons, he'll summon it two levels higher, and it will remain at a higher level until it gets killed or unsummoned.

    Perhaps a better example would have been the barbarian warcries. If you switch to echoing weapons, you get the +6 skill bonus until the timer expires, even if you switch weapons.

    That's why I assumed that you could switch weapons and keep the summons. That said, I have never used Oath, or any runeword that provides a summons for that matter, so I have never been in a situation where I had the summons but no skill points in it. OTOH, what would happen if you used Oath with a non-druid character. They obviously cannot have a point in that skill. That would be the simplest test case.
     
  3. dmc

    dmc Speak softly and carry a big briefcase Staff Member Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    Yup - gotta make one first and then I'll have my sorc or barb use it (both have high enough dex) to try it out.
     
  4. Sir Rechet

    Sir Rechet I speak maths and logic, not stupid Veteran

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    Might merc with Ethereal Doom Thresher, further boosted by a slvl 20+ Fanaticism aura, is a fine-tuned machine of slaughter. Let me tell ya, Hell level mobs on /players 8 crumble surprisingly fast when he finally manages to haul his arse to where he's supposed to be.

    Considering he's attacking 5 times per second with an ouchy two-hander, he's actually putting just about as much dps as a whirlwind barbarian with, say, eBotD Warpike or something similar.
     
  5. dmc

    dmc Speak softly and carry a big briefcase Staff Member Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    Well, turns out you can't cube sockets into superior phase blades, so I have a few socketed regular phase blades now with 3, 5, and 6 sockets. Note the absence of 4 sockets -- gah. Need to collect more phase blades.

    I may also collect white feral axes and champion axes which are, as far as I can tell, the only axes worth making Oath in for speed purposes for this character.
     
  6. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    I was unaware of this. Of course, given the difference between a regular and superior version of a base weapon is marginal, regular phase blades should be adequate.

    Although phase blades don't exactly grow on trees... having a variety of different socketed phase blades are always useful. One day, you may want a BotD. Or another CtA, heck even the 3 socket one could be used for Crescent Moon.

    I think you're right - at least as far as two-handers go. Druids do seem to have slightly higher swing rates with axes (and mauls) as compared to other characters.
     
  7. Sir Rechet

    Sir Rechet I speak maths and logic, not stupid Veteran

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    Cube socket recipes in general won't work with superior items. Socketing those is only possible via Larzuk.

    Aldeth, using the runes for BotD on a regular phase blade would be a cry and shame. You'd lose the ethereal bonus, meaning you'd only get ~400% effective on-weapon ed% instead of ~650% with an ethereal weapon. :p
     
  8. Morgoroth

    Morgoroth Just because I happen to have tentacles, it doesn'

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    I wonder if I'm being a complete idiot now but I'm currently doing nightmare diablo runs with my barb. I checked ATMA drop calculator and nightmare diablo seems to have the highest odds (by far) of dropping some of the exceptional uniques I'm currently missing such as the homoncoulus, the occulus, skullders ire, shaftstop etc. The runs are over fairly quickly, allthough it takes a moment to reach all the seals but my frenzy barb runs through the level quite fast. My barb is fit enough to do hell baal runs too, but they take quite a while to do with him. Getting some of the above items would do a lot to help my other characters and their development.

    Also without iron maiden on oblivion knights my chances of dying or running in to trouble along the way are practically zero.
     
  9. dmc

    dmc Speak softly and carry a big briefcase Staff Member Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    So it's been weeks since I had a decent drop. No more.

    It started well, when one of the random undead guys on the way to Pindleskin dropped a vex. Then, I found a Tomb Reaver, a Steeldriver, and a Goldstrike Arch. Plus, I made Oath and it had +320% ED. Oh, and the Tomb Reaver had relatively sucky stats, but it had three sockets. Now I need to run someone else to test out the HOW in the Oath and see if it disappears on weapon switch.
     
  10. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    I completely forgot that the mod you get with the use of a Zod Rune is indestructible. So, just like with anything that you use a Zod in, of course you'd want to use an ethereal version as the base item.

    Also, while I'm sure everyone who reads this thread already knows this, but your merc's items do no lose durability, so it's fine to give them ethereal everything.

    I wasn't even aware that Tomb Reaver had a variable number of sockets. Those are some nice drops though. Especially Tomb Reaver, as that is one of the top non-runeword choices for merc weaponry.

    Now that they got rid of Iron Maiden, Diablo can be run. (Not that people didn't run him before - they did - but it was limited to specific character types, like sorceresses, windy druids and bowazons.) But now melee characters can run him as well. It makes sense that he's a good source of exceptional uniques. The most run boss in the game is still Hell Mephisto. While his odds may be no better than Nightmare Diablo of dropping some of the exceptional uniques you listed, Mephisto can also drop some elite uniques, in addition to all the items you listed.

    Well that explains it right there. If you have a character capable of doing Hell Baal runs, then yes, I imagine Nightmare Diablo would be a walk in the park.

    My barbarian is still progressing through Act II Nightmare. He is currently level 57, doing everything on players 8, and next up is the Arcane Sanctuary. I do think that the rune drops are improved. The unique Invader right before you get to the portal that takes you to the Arcane Sanctuary (I think his name is Fire Eye), dropped a Lum (#17). While there isn't anything particularly remarkable about getting a Lum, getting one in Act II Nightmare is far and away the earliest I've ever got one. I don't think I've ever seen one before Nightmare hellforge.

    That also means I have what I need to make Smoke, if it turns out I need additional resistances in hell difficulty. Smoke gives resist all +50% (although sadly, not much else). I would much prefer to use the Lum in something like Lionheart instead, although that also requires a Fal, and so that will likely take a while (I'm not sure if Fal is droppable by nightmare hellfroge). I still maintain that if you need resistances on your armor, runewords are where it's at.

    I think the next goal is to get to Nightmare Mephisto. While I have not run into any difficulties on players 8 up to this point, I notice that for some boss packs, it's taking me quite a while to hack through them. I could really use a weapon upgrade in the not too distant future. Nightmare Mephisto is an excellent choice for picking up such a weapon, and I can keep rerolling maps until I get one that allows me to do it quickly. I don't need anything outstanding mind you - I'd settle for something like a Butcher's Pupil (which is very good once you throw a Shael in it), or virtually anything else that is reasonably quick and comes with some crushing blow.
     
  11. Viking Gems: 19/31
    Latest gem: Aquamarine


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    Please please tell me you didn't make Oath in a PB, just please.....

    Oath
    4 Socket Swords/Axes/Maces
    Shael + Pul + Mal + Lum
    30% Chance To Cast Level 20 Bone Spirit On Striking
    Indestructible. Nothing could really be more wasted on a PB...
    +50% Increased Attack Speed - Sure it's lovely, but it's just the wrong weapon
    +210-340% Enhanced Damage (varies) ***->>> This is useless with such a low damage weapon. Completely useless.
    +75% Damage To Demons
    +100 To Attack Rating Against Demons
    Prevent Monster Heal
    +10 To Energy
    +10-15 Magic Absorb (varies)
    Level 16 Heart Of Wolverine (20 Charges)
    Level 17 Iron Golem (14 Charges)

    Oath should really be made in a high damage etheral base weapon. Simply not in a PB.

    The TR is nice, the 3 socket PB's -> Crescent Moon and Lawbringer.

    You really should not be looking at Oath for a Kodiak, it brings nothing to the party in all honesty after the hunger penalties eat up your physical damage.

    On the brighter side if you're in 1.13 you can at least reset your stat points if need be later.

    On summons: Summons always disappear if you have no way to cast them, you are correct. It's not meant to work like that, but certain events trigger the game to call a check on the summon(s) and if you have zero points and no way to cast from charges, it will poof. Anything generated from ctc on striking will also poof even if it's still being used. The events include drinking a potion, using a TP or WP, levelling up etc. In short - Yep, stick 1 hard point in the HoW and you can keep the Oath summoned one till it dies.
     
  12. dmc

    dmc Speak softly and carry a big briefcase Staff Member Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    Well, I'd like to take credit for not being a complete idiot, but I really was going to make it in a phase blade. However, I forgot the runes and, rather than go to Arreat Summit, I went to the Kodiak Guide and saw the recommendations for either a Feral Axe or Champion's Axe. As I didn't have a Feral Axe with the requisite sockets, but did have a Champion Axe, there you go.

    But I would have made it in a phase blade if I didn't reread that section . . . .
     
  13. Balle Gems: 19/31
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    i do the same thing with runewords, the default thing to put it in is always a PB
     
  14. Sir Rechet

    Sir Rechet I speak maths and logic, not stupid Veteran

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    Yeah, phase blades are for stuff that mainly needs to be fast, but the indestructible/self-repair runewords are usually much better in something that comes in ethereal flavour. Grief being the major exception, of course.

    I've found quite a selection of straight "Damage Reduced by X" (not percentage-based such as Stormshield) gear lately and was wondering if there's any character builds that could put them to real use. Such a character needs to be able to kill monster packs effectively without +skills, +ias or any of the bog-standard damage enhancers (cb, ow, ds, +elemental damage) since most of the major item slots (including shield, thus no two-handers) are devoted to -DR gear.

    Necromancer using Corpse Explosion is one, although neither Poison Nova nor the Bone spells would hit hard without +skills and Skeletons would make yourself having -DR rather pointless. Trapper Assassin gets their own version of CE as well, so they could also work. Sorceress is just plain underpowered without +skills, even if you were to put your -DR to use and drop Meteors on yourself while the mobs gather around you. Paladins don't have AoE attacks to speak of, likewise for Feral Druids, and Elemental Druids wouldn't do much without +skills. Barbarians with Whirlwind, together with Berserk back-up could be interesting mainly because WW doesn't need +ias or Chance to Cast effects. Finally, a LF amazon only really needs a cracked javelin to rock, although lightning immunes would be a huge PITA.

    Any other obvious choices I'm missing in the list? :)

    Edit: The main highlights of having stacked Damage Reduction (100+ DR) are:
    - Safely ignore *any* melee and ranged attacks, unless Extra Strong/Fanaticism/Might enhanced
    - Safely ignore Amplify Damage and any effects reducing your defense, unless combined with ES/F/M
    - Completely removes the need for defense and/or high blocking percentage (makes them redundant)
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2010
  15. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    And for a lot of rune words, PBs are a very solid choice due to their very fast base attack speed (if you don't mind the dexterity investment). Then again, unless you're a barb who is dual wielding, you're probably going to end up using a shield, so your dextertiy would be high regardless.

    I could have sworn I saw a damage reduction guide over at the incgamers site, but upon just glancing through, I could not find it. I'm pretty sure the build was a paladin, and that the guide said that if you don't have at least 80 in DR, don't even bother trying to do it, and 100 DR is recommended. He also said that you need your resistances maxed or you're defeating the entire purpose of the build. The author claimed that you could set it to players 8, stand in the middle of a pack of Frenzytaurs, and laugh. The guide pointed out that even on hell difficulty, there's not a lot of stuff that hits for more than 100 points of damage. Usually when your life bulb suddenly empties, it's because you're surrounded by a pack adn got hit by a bunch of monsters at the same time.

    I wish I could find the guide because just going from memory, I'm probably going to get some of the details wrong. It was basically a modified holy shock paladin. The weapon was some type of elite polearm with the rune word Crescent Moon. Because of ITD, he only placed a single point into Zeal, although with his +skills, he did get up to five attacks per zeal cycle. IIRC, he maxed Holy Shock, Resist Lightning, FoH, and Sacrifice, with all points after that going into Zeal for the added damage. He claimed that once you synergize FoH with Holy Shock, that the damage actually gets to respectable levels (which I found surprising). He said it was especially effective against non-lighting immune undead. He used Vengence as a one-point wonder to deal with combination physical and lightning immunes.

    He said with all the DR gear that your character is basically immortal. About the only real danger is running into something that hits really hard, and spawns Extra Strong/Extra Fast, or with Fanaticism, or something like that. So boss packs of Udars, Frenzytaurs, and of course Lister were potentially problematic.

    I beat Nightmare Duriel last night - it took about five full minutes to beat him down, and I got crap. I've been crafting magic nagas in the hope of getting a decent blood weapon, but no luck so far - everything I've made has been inferior to my current weapon, which is starting to become unsuitable. (It would probably be getting the job done just fine on players 1, but I want to continue with players 8, at least through the end of nightmare.) It's not that I'm in any real danger of dying, it's just that it's taking a while to kill stuff.
     
  16. Viking Gems: 19/31
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    For a DR build - Check out SSoG's Monk build at the Amazon Basin. (Prayer Pally with loads of DR gear).

    Idea is to reduce damage to the point where you're regenerating faster than you take it in the main.
     
  17. dmc

    dmc Speak softly and carry a big briefcase Staff Member Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    Viking - I'm sure that is what AFI was talking about. If you find the link I posted to the Kodiak build in this thread, you can hit the monk link in SSOG's signature to read about that one.
     
  18. Sir Rechet

    Sir Rechet I speak maths and logic, not stupid Veteran

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    I have my own "Angel" paladin build listed on Amazon Basin (basically an Avenger with Salvation aura instead of Conviction, a real party favorite I've heard) and I've listed how it can be made rather immortal with a healthy dose of DR. I'm not exactly sure if trading the Salvation aura for Prayer would make much sense, as then you'll need to get ~100% resist all from other sources, of which there's almost none remaining after you've reached 100+ DR.

    Lately the idea of a melee venomancer (!!) with DR has intrigued me the most, as DR solves the defense problem it has and using Poison Nova without minions (not enough skill points) is blatantly asking to get surrounded by angry mobs. And once you down anyone in the pack, CE pretty much blows the rest away. Poison dagger together with your mercenary ought to make getting the first corpse all that much faster as well...
     
  19. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    You know, I did see that build, and I wondered based on the name whether or not it was you. I guess you received your knighthood sometime between writing that guide and joining the boards here. I agree that the only way you're gonig to get anywhere near max resists while maintaining high DR is by going with Salvation. Especially if you use something like a Guardian Angel and can take your resists over 75%.

    The only paladin I ever had that was able to maintain maxed resists with Guadian Angel and not using any resistance boosting auras was by completely devoting my shield slot to resistances. I used a 4-socket paladin shield with a base +44% resist all, and stuffed it with pdiamonds. So I had +120% resist all from the shield. I had a few levels in Holy Shield, and Guardian Angel also raises your blocking percentage, so I was able to maintain max block easily, even though the shield didn't have any enhanced blocking modifiers. I don't remember what my dexterity was exactly, but it was around 120 when I was level 80.

    I started Act III last night, and I got Khalim's Eye. Unfortunately, my kid rolled out of bed in his sleep and woke up screaming, so I exited the game prior to reaching any waypoint, so I'm back in town when I play again.

    I'm definitely going to farm Mephisto. It may take a bit to get a good map, but once I do I'm going to run him a bunch of times. He's not going to be a quick run, simply because I cannot do it quickly with my current weapon. But I need to start improving my inventory if I want to do hell. You probably need to do a couple of hundred runs to get most of what you can get from Mephisto, and while I don't have that kind of patience, I also realize that 10 runs or so is not going to be enough. I probably am gonig to have to run him a few dozen times.
     
  20. dmc

    dmc Speak softly and carry a big briefcase Staff Member Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    Took my druid to level 18 last night (haven't done much with him for a week) and the waypoint at the outer cloister. I now have him in the Sigon set and I am using one of the unique swords (forget the name). I kinda like tricking out new characters in complete sets because it's really the only time I use them. Thus, I'm sure I could get more bang for my buck with other items, but I'm not going to do that until I reach levels where I can start incorporating end-game items.

    Killing speed is pretty similar now among all three forms. I just need to plug away and get through the normal level so that I can run Baal and his minions enough get my levels up and move on to Nightmare. I don't think I am going to find anything new at all with this character, so I'm just trying to get through.
     
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