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Spearthrower
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SP Character Guides

Time for my regular reposting of these Guides........

I'm sure that there are new SP Guides in existence...... feel free to tack them onto this thread and I'll save them to be reposted at later dates!

TA


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Hermit_boy's Guide for Single Player WereWolf.

There is a lot of info out there about the WW and even a few guides, but I am going to try to compile as much as I can and add my own experience. I am writing this under the assumption that you want to be able to beat Baal in Hell and do it in Single player.

What is the WW?

The WW is a druid who uses the WW form to kill. The strenght of this build is that, IMO, it is the most powerful melee type character. Killing is fast and furious, the game pace is fast, but is mainly repetetive. This style of play fits me well, and my WW is one of my favorite characters.

STATS:

Strength: 225 should be your goal. This is so that you can weild an Ogre Maul, which is probably the best WW weapon. I will talk about weapons later. 232 is the max strenght for the best armor (sacred Plate), and that is only another 7 points, so it may be worth it. However, by then you may have a +str item anyway to get you there. The only weapon you cannot use with that str is a thunder mallet, which is actually not as good as an ogre maul anyway. The str req for that is 253 which is way more than you want to put in.

Dexterity: Do not add anything. You need dex for certain weapons like swords and polearms, but they are not the weapon of choice. You will be using a 2-handed weapon, so you need no dex for a sheild. Dex is also useful for Defense rating (DR), but as I will show later, a good DR is low on your priority list anyway.

Energy: Do not add anything. The druid gets +2 mana per level up, which is good. You will not be using much mana however, so just leave it alone.

Vitality: Everything else of course. Life is not a huge concern early on, so put 1-2 points per level up here early on and focus on strenght till you can use decent weapons and armor. Once you hit NM, you should start putting 3-4 points here per level up. With high or maxed Lycanthropy and Oak Sage, you will get 8 or more life points per 1 point invested in Vitality. That is an EXCELLENT return.


ITEMS:

Since this is a SP guide, I will work under the assumption that you will not have much opportunity to trade or mule items. Because of this, the rule is use what you find. However, I will give some guidlines as to what you want.

Weapon: You want a 2 handed weapon. PERIOD. At least as your primary weapon. The druid has a faster peed for 2 handed weapons that any other class. Plus, using a 1 handed weapon in many cases is slower than using a 2 handed weapon. You will not need a sheild as I will discuss later.

The maul, and eventually the ogre maul, is the preferred weapon for many reasons.
1) No Dex requirement so you can put more points in str and vit.
2) Like all mace weapons it does extra damage to undead.
3) It is one of the only weapons that gives an EXTRA bonus to damage for strength. All melee weapons give a bonus to damage according to how much str you have. 100 points in str gives 100% added damage when using the weapon. This is calculated off the base damage for the weapon. However, the maul gives 110% added damage for 100 points in str. The only other weapons that do this are the war hammer and great maul, but both of those weapons have a slower speed for the druid than a maul.

Unfortunatly on SP it is hard to aspire to a certain weapon. The fabled Immortal Kings Stone Crusher Ogre Maul is one of the best WW weapons. However, I found that it was easier to make my own rune word maul. IMO, Honor is one of the best rune words and is relatively easy to make. If you can find a 5 socket ogre maul, you will not be disappointed. The runes are all fairly easy to find. I found everything I needed by doing hell countess runs. The countess everntually gave me the runes, and I also found the ogre maul on one of the weapon stands. Here is the trick to find a 5 socket ogre maul. A weapon stand generally gives the same weapon type every time you visit it, until the map is reset by going to another difficulty level then coming back. I found a weapon stand that had the tendency to give out ogre mauls, then I just keep running back to it over and over. It eventually gave me a 5 socket ogre maul.

I still use my Honor Ogre maul even though I recently found the IK Stone crusher.

Armor: One with good defense is nice, but dont go out of your way for a really high defense. The reason is that in hell, you need a rediculously high defense to keep from being hit. Without a sheild, you will be hit often enough. I will talk about this later. What you do want on Armor is resistance if possible. Fast hit recovery is ok, but not critical. + LIfe is alway very good.

Helm: Druid pelts are very nice for the +skills. Resistance is good as well as +life.

Rings and Amulets: Leech life is very good. I will talk about that later. Otherwise look for resist all. A very good one to have is reduce freeze time, as a frozen WW can be very frustrating. I was lucky enought to find a Ravenfrost ring and cannot be frozen at all. VERY nice to have if you can find something like it.

Boots: Stamina and heal stamina is nice, but with high vitality, a WW rarely runs out of stamina. I would go for increase walk run speed. You can also get reduce freeze length.

Gloves: Here is another place you can increase your life leech. Increase attack speed is also very desirable.

Belts: Not much to tell here. Just follow the above guidlines.

Shield: Do not use a shield. It will hurt your resist a lot, but you need that 2 handed weapon. However, it might be nice to have a sheild with high resist all in your second weapon slot for those times that you just HAVE to have higher resistances. I will talk about the second weapon slot later.

Generally, the attributes you want in your items are as follows, in no particular order. Life leech, +life, +resist, IAS, fast run/walk. + damage is good also on some items, but I have found it usually isnt that impressive when on a ring or circlet. You really need it on the weapon itself.


SKILLS:

There really is a preset skill order for the WW. You can vary it if you want, but the way I will give you has been tried and true for many WWs.

Elemental Tree: Choose nothing from here. At first you might be tempted to get something from here to kill those pesky PIs. However, realize that you cannot use these skills when in WW form. It is not worth changing back and forth to use these skills because they are generally not too good anyway without heavy investment.

Shape Changing Tree:

Werewolf- You will need this of course. When you first become a WW you will notice that you swing your weapon painfully slow. Putting a few points here will increase your attack speed, so I recommend putting 4-5 points here ASAP. Once you get to a decent attack speed, you may want to put more here up to level 9 or so. That is where the diminishing returns hit hard. This skill also gives you AR bonus that does not suffer from diminishing returns. I found that when I reached hell and had maxed my other skills, it was nice to go back here to bump my AR a bit.

Lycanthropy- You will want this maxed eventually. This increases the duration you stay a WW. I have heard some people say that they keep it low because they don't mind recasting WW often. However, if you forget and suddenly turn soft and pink in the middle fo a fight, it is NOT a good thing. In fact, I recast WW just before a big fight no matter how long I have left. Even if it was not for the duration, it is worth maxing this for the HP bonus.

Feral Rage- You wil use this alot, however, it is not worth putting more than 1 point in it. This skill gives you life and mana leech while you are using Fury. The damage and AR bonus of this skill only applies to the skill itself and does not help when you switch to Fury. I will not bore you with the intimate details of how it works. Suffice to say that in a battle, you will hit with this a couple times to build up a glowing ball around you. Once the glowing ball is big (4-5 hits) you will then switch to fury to do the killing. The glowing ball goes away 20 seconds after the last Feral rage hit you make. To keep this ball going you will want to do 1 Feral Rage hit every 15 or so seconds then switch right back to Fury.

Fury- The best skill for a WW. I recommend putting every point here from every level up from 30-50. Max it as soon as possible and you will not be disappointed. It gives an incredible damage bonus as well as AR bonus. It also hits consecutive times, up to 5 times in a row. There are definately disadvantages when using this skill, but without using it, you will not be nearly as viable in Hell.

Disadvantages: There is a bug that is still around where it calculates if the hits swings actually hit. It is much like the Paladins Zeal skill. I don't know how the bug works, but the effect is that even with 95% to hit you will probably miss 2 or 3 times per 5 hits. This bug used to be much worse, but Blizzard has attempted to fix it, and it is better now than it was. This does not make the skill unusable though. The IAS of Fury still means that you will hit more often using it than by using another skill.
Another disadvantage is Fury lock, or Zeal lock to Pallys. Once you start hitting, you are commited to all 5 hits, even if you want to run away half way through. This shows up mostly when fighting Diablo. You start the series of 5 hits, then immediately you notice Diablo gearing up for his red lighting. You are tempted to run from it and dodge, but still have 2 or 3 hits left, and cannot run. This is a little frustrating, but usually not a fatal problem.

Fire Claws- Does not do enough damage in Hell. Not worth it. And if that was not bad enough, you also need to waste a point in WB to get it.

Hunger- Same as Fire Claw. Not worth wasting the pre-req points. Feral rage is more than enough leech.

Rabies- Since this is a pre-req for Fury, it is fun to watch, but usless in practice. Don't invest more than the 1 pre-req point.

Summoning Tree:

Ravens- Someone once calculated the total damage maxed ravens can do, and it is a bit impressive. However, that is damage over time, and the WW is a very impatient killer. This skill is not worth investing in.

Vines- The damage from a Poison Creeper is negligable. Only use this as a pre-req.

Carrion Vine- This is definately worth getting. Usually 1 point is sufficient, but more will always help if you have points to spare. There is no level at which this vine will survive a tough fight. It seems like monsters are drawn to it, and it dies faster than a rose petal. It is usually best to use after a fight, to recharge, or cast it towards a pile of bodies that are out of harms way. The life it gives is very good, especially because red potions become worthless. Solar creeper is worthless because you will likely never have mana problems and you cannot have it and the carrion vine at the same time.

Oak Sage- There is a debate about the OS vs HoW. For a WW, I believe that OS is the way to go. The life it gives you is very good. It also gives life to your minions and merc, and we all know a merc can always use more life. A high level oak sage can also be a good tank. They are surprisingly tough.

Heart of Wolverine- This is nice for the AR and damage it gives. However, a WW will not need the AR, and the damage is not enough to make a huge difference.

Spirit of Barbs- Not good enough to use in hell. If you want thorns, a good thorns merc is much better.

Wolves and Bear- There is a big debate about which to use. I belive they basically serve the same purpose which is to distract the monsters while you do the killing. Neither will be very good at dishing out damage in hell. The benefit of the wolves is that there are more of them, and therefore more distracting. The bear is my personal choice of 2 reasons. 1) It lasts longer than the wolves. It can be more of a tank. 2) It has knock back attacks. This really distracts monsters and keeps them occupied. Personally, I would not rely on either too much, so it is not worth putting too many points in either of them.


STRATEGY:

Leeching:
The first and most important strategy for a WW is leeching. My recommendation is to have at least 10% leaching from items. With Feral rage on top of that, you will be getting back more life than the monsters are taking away.

This is why a good defense is not too important. Who cares how much life you lose, as long as you are gaining it back faster than you are losing it.

The other drawback of being hit is being stunned. I tried really hard to find the info on stun, but I could not find it. I know I have seen it though. Basically, you are only stunned if a hit does more than x% of your total hit points. I think it is 7%, but I cannot remember. As a WW, you will have so many hitpoints that regular hits will not stun you very often. Usually only with bosses.

Here is a breakdown of my WW as an example. I have 19% life leech without using Feral Rage, 31% with charged up Feral Rage. I do 1900-2600 physical damage per hit. In hell that is 850-1300 physical damage per hit with the global physical resist. They life leech is only 1/4 in hell I believe. That means on every hit I leech 42-65 life per hit. This really adds fast, and other than bosses, I rarely use potions. Also rejuv potions are the only way to go. The red potions do nothing in the middle of a battle.

Physical Immunes:
The silver bullet that all WWs hate. These guys are very tough since you have no good magic damage skills. You will have to make up for it in items. Most likely your main weapon will not have much magic damage. The best way to do a decent amount of elemental damage is to have a second weapon with high elemental damage and put it in your second weapon slot.

What to look for as a second magic damage weapon? Well, many people look for a one handed weapon so that they can have a sheild to go with it. When you are fighting a PI, you are not leeching, so watch your health. That is when a shield comes in handy to up your defense and blocking. If you find a good 1 handed weapon with great elemental damage, it will save your bacon. As funny as it sounds, wands can have the highest elemental damage of any blue magic weapon. You may want to start browsing the wands section when you buy. If you find one that you can also socket, that is all the better. I think this is the best bet if you cannot find a good unique like branars star or lighsabre. Another good suggestion is to get a 1 handed weapon with sockets, then add some gems or runes. If you go this route, you will want something with 6 sockets. The following weapons are 1 handed and can have 6 sockets: Crystal sword, War Ax, and Military Pick. And of course their exceptional and elite versions.

There are 2 ways to go with elemental damage. Either spread out the damage between different elements, or put it all in one element. It really is a toss up as to which is better. Say you find a phase blade and have it socketed in the socket quest. Then you put in 6 perfect topazes. You just have to run from bosses that are PI and LI. If you spread it out, then for most double immunes you are doing 2/3 of the usual elemental damage. But at least you can then kill them.

I would not recommend using poison. It takes too long to kill and does not stack. Fire does good damage, but I am always reluctant to use it since more monsters and double immunes will be immune to fire than any other element. Cold does not do as much damage, but has chill. However, you might have chill on your ring or gloves or something else, and it only takes 1 point of damage to chill. Plus most immunes in Act V are immune to cold, and Act V is the hardest. My choice is lightning. I think it does the most damage and has the least amount of monsters immune to it. However, there are lots of monsters that are lightning enhanced but not LI. LE gives them high resistance, but not necessarily immunity. So lightning is not always the best either. Some people think it is too random since it has such a low min damage. However look at the gems. A Perfect ruby does 15-20 fire damage, averaging 17.5. A perfect Topaz does 1-40 lightning damage, averaging 20.5. It is up to you as to which element you use.

My personal preference is to be very strong in one element. Normal monsters are never double immune, so you will only have to watch out for bosses. Then only when you meet a boss that is PI and LI, or whatever your element is. By the time I beat hell, I had only run across a PILI 3 or 4 times in all of hell. I just ran.

Remember also that running is not cowardly. If you do not learn that, you will have many frustrating deaths.

It is always good to collect elemental damage charms as well. With enough planning PIs will just slow you down, not stop you. Also when you run into groups where some of the monsters are PI, but others are not, I found that the best strategy, if you cannot seperate them, is to ignore the PIs. Just beat on the non-PIs and hopefully you will leech enough to stay alive until you kill them, then switch over and deal with the PIs.


Mercs:
What merc is best for a WW? Personally, I don't think there is a best option. A good bet is to go with an Act III sorc. He will provide elemental damage and hopefully stay out of the way so that he doesnt get himself killed. Mark my words, he will still die often, but hopefully you can tank for him. You also have your summons to tank for you, so you do not need your merc to do it.

Act I rouges are good, but they supply physical damage, which is not going to be too necessary. Unless you get them a good elemental bow, but then why not have an ACT III merc. As for an Act II merc, I really don't think you would need any of their auras. Prayer will not heal you enough to make a lick of difference. You don't need blessed aim or higher defense. Thorns will not help too much either. Holy freeze may be nice so slow monsters down for you, and might would be good to up your damage, but dishing out physical damage should not be much of a problem anyway.

The only good thing about an Act V merc is to tank for you, which I mentioned you do not need.

MSLE bosses and other magic damage:
Without a shield, a WW is going to have low resistance. My WW has 26 resist to lighting and -10 to -40 in the others. And I made it just fine. As long as you are leeching, you can take an incredible amount of damage and keep kicking.

There are only a few places where low resist and high elemental damage will be dangerous. One is in the Chaos sanctuary with all the oblivion knights. The other is with LE bosses, especially MSLE bosses with conviction auras. Sometimes you just need to do a little damage, then run away and hide till you heal. There is also nothing wrong with running away and never coming back.


I hope this will help in building a good SP WW. I appologize if I have left anything out, but this is my first guide, so be lenient.



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Spearthrower's Barbarian Throwers Guide

Throwers.... probably one of the most underated classes in the game. This was my 1st successful character build back in D2C and was effectively shelved in his mid 80's due to other interests. A few weeks ago I re-located him on a floppy disk where he was stashed while I went to live in Milan and immediately I found some excellent weapons for him which allowed him to reach level 90 (my highest character)

As with my WB guide, this is a SP Friendly Guide... no *must have* weapon/armour items, just a couple of interesting items if you have them.

A thrower obviously focuses on the throwing mastery as his primary attack. An important point to mention right off the bat is that "throwing weapons" are your mastery.... if you use a throwing axe it is classed as "throwing" not as an axe so placing points into axe mastery will not provide any benefits.

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STATS PLACEMENT AIMS:

STR 130ish...
this allows you to wear good armour and use Balrog Spears if this is your preferred weapon

DEX 300.....
Yes, I said 300! Dex provides the maximum damage in throwing and also gives ridiculous AR, as throwing weapons diminish you want every one of them to hit saving those back to town trips. "Make every bullet count lads. Don't shoot 'till you see the whites of their eyes"

ENERGY Base.....
throwing costs very little and even a tiny amount of mana steal will easily replenish your needs - eventually you wont even need mana steal!

VIT Everything else....

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PRIMARY SKILL PLACEMENT:

THROWING MASTERY 20

DOUBLE THROW between 8 and 20....
This skill only provides AR and with 300 DEX AR is not an issue if you only PvM, for PvP the more AR the better. Only go higher than 8 if you see that you need to hit more (unlikely)

BATTLE ORDERS 20
More life and mana.... very important.

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UTILITY SKILL PLACEMENT:
There are a lot of skills that are very helpful to a thrower but yet dont need many points in them. As you can see from the few primary skills needed, you will have a lot of spare points leftover - here are some suggestions.

LEAP ATTACK 1 point only - this isnt for damage but for tactical redeployment. An important strategy for a Thrower is to have the monsters coming to you in a line rather than as a mob... this skill gives you the option to rapidly change positions to more effectively mow down your enemies.

BERSERK (1-5) + WEAPON MASTERY (1-3) - as many points as you feel necessary... obviously this is only to deal with PI's rather than flinging 40 arching spears at them.... I personally use elemental throwing weapons but this is a valid option.

INC SPEED - at least 4, preferably more but dependent on your equipment. Mobility is the key to your Throwers success, move fast, throw spears, jump to a new position, throw spears, run back, throw some more...... never.... NEVER get into melee range, not because you cant take a hit (with B.O. you can) but because there is no need for you to be in melee range.

INC STAMINA - 1 point, lets you run more

NATURAL RESISTS - 5 max - probably the only damage you will be taking from normal monsters (i.e. not bosses) will be ranged damage and this will be most damaging when it is elemental. Beyond 5 the returns diminish steeply and your build will not require you to wear specific equipment so you can easily max resists with this skill and some from your items.

TAUNT - 1 point - Use this to make ranged attackers walk towards you.... perfectly in line for your spears to hit them. This also works on magic users so apply this when facing any non-melee monsters.

GRIM WARD - 1 point + - At last, a character that can benefit from this skill. Set up a ward and lead the monsters back to it... they turn and run away in a nice straight line letting you throw spears at their retreating backs A fun use of this is what I call Grim Ward Ping Pong... set up a few wards in a vague line and sometimes you will get a monster flee your first ward, see the 2nd and immediately turn around back onto its original path... get this right with a group of monsters and you have a free killing party! Grim Ward is also good because its not character level based like howl is... so monsters will always run.... increasing this skill just makes them run further for longer.

FRENZY - 6 MAX! - I have never actually used this but I just wanted to include it to make the guide more complete... Frenzy's speed bonus does actually add to your throwing speed so it is possible to get a few frenzies in then switch to 9mmUzi mode..... you will send out spears at a stupidly fast rate. This is not particularly necessary because you will be aiming to get as much IAS from equipment as possible.


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EQUIPMENT:

Ok, you will have noticed by now that I keep referring to spears... this is not just a PR campaign with my name It is because javelin class weapons actually have over double the range of other throwing weapons. Yes, there are axe and knife class weapons which also generally have double the quantity of javelin class, but range makes an interesting difference. Knives and Axes range is just about the size of a screen in high resolution..... javelins is MORE THAN 2 screens!!!! This can quite often mean that during a chaotic battle where 1 or 2 of your spears may have gone astray, you will frequently walk on to find dead enemies from your missed spears!!!! As an interesting side-note this is also VERY viable in PvP, you could, with practice use the radar to see where your off-screen enemy is and start hurling spears that way... you might not get 100% accuracy but if even 1 hits it's sure to throw them into confusion!!

Ok, so we have JAVELIN class weapons - as soon as you start out in the game start looking for magic ones, doesnt matter what type. This is because normal (white) weapons will automatically disappear when you run out of them whereas magic ones will just become unavailable until you repair them.

Most importantly, get used to the need for portalling back to town frequently - FAR more than with other character classes, throwing weapons run out, simple as that... thus a little patience is required. This makes Act 3 a pain as its further to run to get them repaired but every class has its downside and this is it... seriously, those who have never seen a Thrower will not believe the damage it does while receiving no damage in return!

So: SPEARS
the particular range I use are the Harpoons, the elite version of this is Winged Harpoons and I have been fortunate enough to find both a cruel winged harpoon of butchery and a cruel winged harpoon of evisceration. The latter gives me a base weapon damage of 60 - 394 which I'm sure you can appreciate is particularly devastating! Anya in Act 5 is your girl for these... and for earlier good throwing weapons. Dont kill Nilathak or get the Halls Of Anguish/Pain (cant remember the name) Portal and you can easily nip in and out of the portal checking her inventory.

ARMOUR:
Anything!! Your aim is to not get hit, so high defense is not required. Anything that isnt heavy so it doesnt drain your stamina. If you can get life/resists on it then its great, if you can get IAS then thats what we're after. Stock up heavily on IAS gear - anything, anywhere. Helmet, Armour, Gloves, Amulet... all of these are best if they have an IAS mod on them. Remember that your weapons cant be socketed so at the least you have 1 less thing to worry about
I used Twitchthrow even in my 80's just for the IAS until I collected enough IAS jewels to make a 4 socket superior Archon Plate which is perfect. There are probably many uniques and sets that are useful for this class but as we're SPers I wont go into them as not everyone has the potential to get them... heh, even Archon Plate is rare enough

RAZORTAIL BELT + CLEGLAWS PINCERS
There's only 2 specific pieces of equipment I will mention. The belt is the ONLY way a Thrower can get a piercing attack. While it doesnt matter if you dont have it, it certainly can improve your kills per spear ratio. With this the number of monsters I found dead 2 screens away from my last battle massively increased as the spears penetrated the nearby mobs and continued to sail off into the distance.

The gloves do 2 interesting things.... 1 is 25% speed reduction of your target which I'm sure many Zons out there are well aware of... they're walking slower towards you thus you have more time to kill them. 2nd is Knockback... probably the second most hated mod on equipment for normal melee classes but GREAT for a Thrower.... watching the Smith run at you and keep getting pounded into a corner makes these gloves worth more than their weight in gold. Btw - the MOST hated mod is probably %monster flee when hit.... guess what? Another great mod for a thrower if you can get it on any piece of your equipment.

Also look for anything with the "Cannot be frozen" mod on it. Your key is mobility and being frozen does not fit well with that

CHARMS:
Collect any and all elemental charms, I have only got 1 decent elemental charm but that's because charms didnt exist when most of my playing of this character took place. With enough of these and a decent weapon switch to 2 arcing/hibernal/combustion/other elemental damage spears you will have no need of using the berserk/weapon mastery against PI's
Fast Run... we've covered the need for this already.... with other equipment, your INC SPEED skill and a few of these you will easily hit the Fast run cap and will literally be zooming around the screen.


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MERCS:
Again, when I was playing these guys just didn't provide a decent use. Now they are there I have experimented with different ones with this build and as a rule I would have to say - Dont use a merc with a Thrower..... why? Well, we're looking for mobility and we're looking to encourage the monsters to run straight at us in as much of a line as possible - a merc will distract a good few and will lower your kills per spear ratio...... if you REALLY cant imagine life without a merc (so lonely!) then a Holy Freeze merc will serve you well slowing down the enemy and generally making them a not so mobile target.

Another potential is an Act 1 merc with massive elemental damage on the bow... I just cant seem to come to grips with these, they seem to like wandering into crowds and just generally doing exactly the opposite of what I want. Your choice but bear in mind that a merc is not required to succeed.


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BOSSES:

Andariel: You can kill her before you can even see her - you know where she stands so go within about a screen and a half and fire away. She will probably start coming towards you but by the time she's in melee range, she's dead.

Duriel: LOL... here we have THE problem for a thrower, there's no space for manoeuvre, nowhere to run, and he uses a freeze aura. You have only 1 option... stand in his face and throw. In normal he drops quickly, in NM you have high level Battle Orders and can take him with minimal trouble.... in Hell, well, get ready for hassle... my advice is to immediately open a TP the moment you get in the chamber and ensure you have full rejuvs in all your slots. He will die and probably quickly but it might take a good few well-timed heals before you're past him. Don't be disconcerted, he is your only competitor.

Mephisto: Jump over to him, lead him back and jump back over again. Dodge his big ice balls (ooer) and kill him from the safety of the other side. With Battle Orders up, even if one of them hits you its not going to hurt all that much, but a few in a row could cause some damage. Generally 0 problems.

Diablo: With such tremendous AR you wont have anywhere near the problems other classes have in hitting him. The idea is to stay mobile and watch out for his attacks, quite often he leaves himself open for a good 2 or 3 seconds of spear throwing. He is not a problem.

Baal: Pah! You can stand by his first group of tentacles where you come out and take him down... he normally doesnt even respond. Just move up and down the ravine but not on the bridge itself and you will kill him in seconds.

OTHERS:
Ranged Attackers/Magic Users - remember to use taunt
Lord De Suis (spelling?) His and his buddies Iron Maiden curses wont help him - you're a ranged attacker so not in danger from them... fill him with spears

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CONCLUSION

The Thrower is an exceptional class, easily viable in Hell, great in the Cow level and with only Duriel as a difficulty. Keep mobility in mind at all times and be lining the monsters up for faster kills. A good tip is to hit shift and fire at the floor between you and the target, when he dies any behind will be hit and if there's a mob of them you can spread your fire with just a small movement of the mouse. For me this is probably the most *skillfull* class because you dont just run at a monster and let your weapons and stats do the maths with the targets defense and life, you actually use targetting and quick thinking to maximise your killing efficiency. Neither over or underpowered, the Thrower can easily face any monster in the game without taking damage and yet get a great deal of satisfaction from every kill. If you like PvP give this class a try - I've heard of very good results from it. If you only PvM then I guarantee this class will provide a new Diablo gaming experience for you.

Cheers for reading, hope this encourages some of you to try out my favourite class. I've probably missed loads so I'll end up editing.. but hey! No-one minds do they? Heheh

Spearthrower


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Spearthrower's SP Werebear Guide.

This is long: If its helpful then print it off so you can read in comfort

I'm making this guide partly because it was requested and partly because a lot of people tend to think that only Werewolves (WW) are viable SP characters. Even over at the Druid forum you see posts from people saying that bears suck or other such useful comments. Admittedly a Werebear (WB) has to be better planned than a WW and it is a lot more difficult to work than a WW.

This guide is aimed at SPers so I am not going to say "You need this godly weapon of godliness" or anything like it. However, a lot of SPers do mule things across and will probably have found some very useful items with other characters so I intend to provide a list of equipment that is easily obtainable and also include a "poor man's" alternative. Whether this is your first ever character or something you can help out with some good equipment, hopefully this guide will have some useful info for you.

Ok, that’s all that said. Down to basics.

A WB differs from a WW in 2 key areas... 1 is killing speed.... WB's do not have a "Fury"-like skill to reap mass destruction on groups of enemies. 2 is in defense, a WW does not need defense and is geared more towards leaching life than not being hit. Ultimately with a WB you can tank anything taking very little damage and doing a LOT of damage at a slower pace. The WB is the 1 hit killer.

****PROBLEMS****

The WB has 2 key problems which you need to know about before creation. 1 is speed - WB's swing weapons VERY slowly.... in fact you probably haven't even seen slow until you have seen a WB at low levels with basic equipment. With my 1st layout I was swinging once every 2 seconds!!! This is no joke and when added to the WB's other problem it becomes deadly (for the WB). Problem 2 is your ability to hit things. WW's have an AR bonus given to them from the actual skill WW form, WB's don't - for this reason they have to use Heart of the Wolverine (HoW) a level 18 summoning skill and pump a lot of points into their primary attack "Maul".
Speed is the first thing you need to worry about with a WB and Attack rating (AR) is next. We will look at ways to help these out later.

****SKILLS****

Key Skills:
Lycanthropy: Level Req 1, also requires WW (which is stupid). Adds a lot of life and Wereform duration.
Werebear form. Level req 6. Adds Damage and Defense and Life.
Maul. Level 12. A charge up skill. Increases damage as you charge up, stuns enemies, adds AR
HoW. Level 18. Summons a spirit that increases damage and attack rating.

Support Skills:
Carrion Vine: Level 12. Eats corpses and returns a percentage of life to you. Only 1 point is necessary.
Fire Claws: Level 18. Adds fire damage to attack and adds AR
Hunger: Level 24. Steals mana and life but has a huge damage penalty
Shockwave: Level 24. Causes a... ok, a shockwave which does some damage and stuns enemies.


The key skills are obviously going to be maxed (eventually) but the support skills need to be discussed.

Carrion Vine is a must... with the huge amount of life you will eventually have as a WB, those healing potions just don’t have any effect. The carrion vine returns a percentage of your life, which, at higher levels can mean an awful lot of HP's. Only 1 point is necessary in this skill.. why? Because vines tend to be hated by all monsters and will always be killed during the fight, it is more of a cast when needed than a permanent summon. Use it at the end of a fight when you are low on health or during a tough fight where it can provide both health regen and another target for the enemy. Remember it also eats corpses so if you are facing a resurrecting type enemy it will stop this from happening.

Fire Claws: This is unfortunately an awful skill. The fire damage is tiny although it can be used with maul to increase its damage. Some people put a lot into this skill hoping that it will help them against physical immunes (PI's) in hell. Remember that there are probably more enemies immune to fire than to any other element. I personally would say this is not worth investing into at all.

Hunger: This is a difficult skill to assess because it depends largely on your equipment. I do not use this skill and have thereby saved 2 skill points - Fire Claws is a pre-requisite of it. If you have no other way of leaching life and mana then this is your only option, but I do think that any character should have at least a small amount of life and mana leach on their equipment. Even if you need this skill remember that its damage is reduced by 75% which can be offset by the added damage of Maul but still means that it is only a back-up skill (funny to use on Fallen) and only 1 point is needed.

Shockwave: This is potentially a very powerful skill as it stuns the enemy for a very long time. This is not a skill to focus on until you are a high level but I intend to finish with about 15 points into this which returns a stun length of about 10 seconds.

****GAMEPLAY****

Starting out: Type players 8 the moment you start the game. Go off and do the Den of Evil quest killing everything and picking up anything of any worth along the way. By the time you have completed the Quest you will probably be level 5 and have enough cash to start yourself off.

It is really important that you save any chipped Diamonds and Amethysts that you find. Go back to Akara and get your reward and nip over to speak to Charsi. You need to get yourself a large axe as it has very fast attack speed for a Druid. What you are really looking for is a socketed Large Axe and you want to put Amethysts into it as soon as you find them. This really helps out with your ability to hit things. As soon as you reach the level requirement for Charsi to start selling ring mail you also want to pick yourself up a socketed one and put chipped diamonds in it.

Stat Points Distribution:
This is a big one over at the Druid forum and everyone seems to agree that you need DEX for a WB. I don't agree. DEX is used in 4 ways by the game – To figure blocking, max damage of bows/throwing weapons, a modifier of defence, a modifier of Attack rating. We get defence bonus from being a Bear that far out-weighs the bonus from DEX. We are going to be using a 2Handed Weapon as our primary, so no shields possible……. And finally our aim is to get attack rating from equipment which I will discuss later, however between levels 8 and 18 you are going to have a hard time hitting things, that’s why I suggest collecting your amethysts and diamonds which give you decent AR without spending anything on DEX. Certainly up to level 6 you wont need to have anything in DEX so I would put 4 in STR and 1 in VIT for the first few levels, this lets you wear better equipment earlier and provides enough life to take some hits. By the time you reach high levels your equipment will also add a fair amount of DEX.. but this is far less important than AR.

Skill Points Distribution:
As mentioned before, WB’s are obliged to place 1 point into WW as a pre-requisite of LYC…… my first point went in WW my next 3 in LYC.. then using the 1 point from the quest and the 1 from gaining level 6, put 1 into Oak Sage and 1 into WB.
Oak Sage is from now on your best friend (at least until you get HoW), re-summon her whenever she dies… and die she will. Get into the habit of having her around; she will take some of the pressure off you as monsters aren’t too happy with her presence. Remember that when you play “players 8” the Oak Sage’s HP’s are boosted by this making it a fairly decent tank even at low levels. Obviously she is only standing in for HoW so don’t place any more points into this skill!

Ok, you can now turn into a WB… try it…. It’s great eh? Now turn back again and go fight in human form! Why? You will probably find that the swing is a little too slow at the moment and you are already doing enough damage in human form.. at the moment the pros are outweighed by the cons of WB-form. At this level WB is best used when fighting boss gangs where the defence and damage bonus (plus the life bonus from LYC) can help out.

****LEVELS 6 - 12****
Over the next few levels you may start to get problems hitting things… use your amethysts & diamonds, use +AR charms/rings/amulets you find until you reach the magic number 12 when you get Maul. Maul is our primary skill and has an AR bonus attached to it… it is similar to an Assassins charge-up skill and it’s damage increases as you hit. If you stop hitting things the charge-up will run out after 20 seconds and you will revert back to normal damage levels.

During these levels keep pumping STR and VIT at a 3:2 ratio. If you really can’t resist then pop a point or 2 in DEX but it is ultimately unnecessary! Get a point into Poison Creeper as a pre-requisite of Carrion Vine (CV) (as the points there you might as well use the vine) and maybe put a point or 2 more into LYC, if you need a little more damage (unlikely) put 1 more point into WB. When you reach level 12 have 2 points saved – 1 into Maul, 1 into CV which now also becomes your best friend and also likes dieing a lot
Every level from here on until 18 I would put into Maul, you see, you need the AR it gives. If, however you find that you are hitting enough but are getting low on HP’s at times then place points into LYC or WB. This is the key to WB management.. if you find you are lacking in an area, use the next levels skill point to boost it.

I beat Andariel at level 12… this is not obligatory and some people enjoy taking the game at a slower pace. In fact, this helps a lot because your chance to hit is based upon your level and the targets level…. If the target is a few levels higher than you it gets harder to hit it effectively. This part from 12 – 18 is probably the most difficult part in a bears life… bear with it!!! ;P

****LEVELS 12 – 18****

At level 18 get HoW - this is your source of AR and improves damage. From here on your skill distribution is pretty much geared towards placing 1 in either LYC, WB, Maul or HoW…. As I explained before, if you feel a deficiency in 1 area then add points to the skill that helps that area out…..
Need more life? LYC or WB
Need more AR? Maul or HoW
Need more duration? LYC
It’s all about managing your character in an effective way and you can exclusively pump these skills from now until they’re maxed if this is what you want.

****ACT 2****

As soon as you get through to Act 2… go shopping! Get higher defensive armour (again with sockets for diamonds) if you are high enough level then you are looking for a Maul (fitting huh?) it is a big 2handed mace. If you are level 16 you can gamble them off the skinny guy – Elzix is his name (I think) – he lives behind the Palace.

This series of weapons is the backbone of Druidic weapons, and while you may later in the game end up with a Feral Axe…. For the foreseeable future you will be using the Maul series… i.e. Maul (normal), War-Club (exceptional), Ogre Maul (elite). Poor mans Maul will be socketed with Amethysts and perhaps a skull of the highest grade available. Rich mans will be rune-worded with a nice Mid-level Rune word. Rich-Jammy-Muler will have a Bonesnap Maul. All of these will hopefully be upgraded whenever possible and at level 29 will have a shael put in them (remember the speed issue)

That is the complete basics as I see them. Focus on these skills and boosting Strength to meet your ultimate weapon requirements and throwing everything else into VIT. Upgrade armour wherever possible (WB-form boosts that defensive rating). Make Full-Rejuvs up with your cube because later on when you have thousands of HP’s, healing potions are useless. Sometime in your mid-30’s you can if need be put a point into Shockwave to help with a little crowd control, although this wont be particularly useful until at least slvl 5-6… but any +skills equipment will help out with this for now. Also I would definitely support working towards having a Grizzly Bear – even if its only 1 point in it and the pre-reqs. Together with your HoW and 8 players he gets a fair amount of life and deals moderate damage… although he is soooo slow it’s a joke, but he's cute to watch... oh and he stuns monsters... heheh !

****MERCS****

If you still need AR then a Blessed Aim merc will help a lot.

I use a Holy Freeze merc... if monsters are slowed then you are relatively hitting faster

A Might merc... this is purely for overkill WB's do ridiculous damage already

Act1/Act3 Merc - Use them as an elementalist to help against PI's in hell.


****MORE EQUIPMENT****
This is at the end of the guide because as I said… we are SPers and not everyone has all the great stuff.

WEAPONS we have talked about…. Mauls. Remember that Shapeshifted forms get a lot more benefit from Increased Attack Speed when it is actually ON the weapon not on equipment. That said…. any IAS is appreciated when in WB form.

A notable exception is the Ribcracker – Very nice indeed for a mid-level bear.
Feral Axes – potentially the best WB weapon in the game (ask Concillian on the Druid forum)
The Immortal Kings Stone-Crusher (Set piece Maul) – a very viable ultimate weapon due to its good damage and fast speed only problem is its character level req of lvl76

The rule of thumb: Fast as possible and high damage. Use the socketing quest to put SHAEL runes into them (if you have shaels cluttering your stash )

ARMOUR: High defensive ratings on a bear make it a formidable tank…. This is definitely a character to look for high defence armour! Runewords rock if you have the potential. If you happen to have a shaftstop collecting dust (don’t we all?) then wear it… in fact any armour type you have with Damage reduction is wonderful!

Sigons Set: Using Helmet & Gloves & Boots/Belt you get some excellent bonuses including IAS, MF and most importantly +AR per lvl from the helmet.

If you have Twitchthroe it is very useful for a Bear at low-mid levels… IAS, +DEX.. they all work.

Fast run helps on boots bears are slooooowwwwwww!

OTHER: Life and Mana leach are fairly important as with all melee character. However with the HUGE damage a bear does only a little of each is really necessary… if you can’t get mana leach on anything, try to find something with +mana after kill… you will eventually get something (I did)

Anything at all with +AR… collect charms with this mod, you ultimately only need a few Steel charms to get your WB’s AR up to good enough levels even for Hell. If nothing else, never under-estimate the power of Perfect Diamonds and Amethysts.

Ravenfrost Ring: For its +AR and +DEX

Look for the “Visionary” mod on a helm… it adds a % bonus to AR per level.

If all else fails - fight monsters that aren't too much higher level than you. This is the biggest factor in the "to hit %" and something that confuses a lot of people. That figure is more an indication of your level versus the monsters level. If its so low that you rarely hit - i.e. under 70% - then go back a bit in the game and level up... this steadily improves your to hit%. With ridiculously high AR you will always hit things even if your level is much lower than your targets while it tells you that you have 55% chance to hit or something! Fight near to your level and all will be well.

*****THIS BIT IS IMPORTANT****

There is a much under-used low level set called Angelic Set…. This was one of my key tactics and my ultimate argument in going against DEX. With just the ring and the amulet you get a massive AR bonus (as well as other mods), wear 2 rings and an amulet and you get double that. I want to point this out as many of you quite possibly have this set lurking on a mule (possibly even from D2Classic) and this can boost your AR up to levels which stand you in good stead for Hell. You are looking for a minimum of 3000 – 3500 AR in Hell, although anything higher is obviously better but anything more than 5K starts to become unnecessary (we aren’t PvPing in SP are we? )

And for the last time let me remind you that SPEED ON THE WEAPON is VERY IMPORTANT!!!! Just wanted to drum that one home!

Well, that’s all, although I’m sure I’ve forgotten some things and possibly made some errors in others so if anyone sees any of these let me know and I will edit it. If anyone has any questions, feel free to ask on the thread or PM me. If anyone wants to flame/criticise… go ahead as this is only my opinion, not the ONLY way to do it and it has worked for me.
Oh yeah… most important… enjoy!!!!

Spearthrower


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Eye Of Sauron’s Guide to a Frenzy Barbarian

I decided to do this guide at the suggestion of Greybeard, It is notveryextensive but it should help people interested in this build. This guide is made from my experience beating hell with a frenzy barbarian. Feel free to add to this.



Weapons:

This is more a matter of personal preference. If I had to pick a weapon to suggest it would probably be swords. The main reason being that a Barb can dual wield ANY sword. While you are more restricted with Maces and Axes. The chipped gem formula is another advantage swords have. Maces could be another good choice because of their inherent damage to undead and the fact that War Hammer and their exceptional and elite versions are the most damaging 1 handed weapon of their class.



Stat Points:

No points into energy. That is a given. I put 1 point into VIT until about level 30ish with the rest into STR and DEX. It was enough life for me in the early stages and allowed me to equip the best stuff early. You need to set a goal for STR and DEX. Check Diabloii or Arreat Summit for weapon requirements and try to meet your goal. After that you can pump all 5 points into VIT for now on.

Skills:

Combat Skills:

All skills need either 0 or 1 points (for prereqs) other than Frenzy and Berserk. I made it just fine through Hell with only one point into berserk but many choose to put more. Leap attack is another good utility skill but it only needs one point.

Combat Masteries:

Obviously you will want to max the mastery of your choice. Iron skin is definitely worth one point and can get you quite a decent defense boots, especially with + to skills. Increased Stamina is useless. Put a point into it only if you want increased speed. Although frenzy increases your run speed more than enough, Increased speed is worth the point in my opinion, especially when going back for a corpse. Natural resist should be brought up to 5 due to decreased returns. IF you’re really suffering in the resist department you might consider more.



War cries:

I have 1 point into ALL war cries. Battle Orders, Shout, and Battle Command are worth at least 1 point regardless. I have one point into all because War Cry is my main war cry. It is an excellent choice for a frenzy barb because it can save your butt A LOT. You can use it to neutralize minions as you take down a boss. And it’s especially useful on flayer swarms. Battle Cry is also useful on act bosses

__________________
Reality is what you bump into in the Dark! :stoned:

Immortals Destroyer Sir Luckalot lvl 57 (R.I.P.). Immortal-Hammer (Punch Barb) lvl 10. The_General (Singer)lvl 13. Wycca (MF Sorc) lvl 71. Waylander lvl 20. Assassin Druid. Cuthalion lvl 24 Bow Barb

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Old Post 22-08-2002 06:30 AM
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Greybeard
Single Player Moderator & DiabloII.Net PAL

Registered: Nov 2001
Location: On the highway to hell, littering it with the corspes of hells minions and foul beasts.
Posts: 3078

Tankadin Paladin Mini-Guide

Tankadin" mini guide-

I hope this doesn't come off as some know it all advice, but I do think that since he did complete Hell and finished the game without dying that it deserves some merit.

First just a few basic tips about the Paladin-

Holy freeze is a misnomer, it does NOT freeze monsters nor shatter them, it merely slows them down.

Just a word about some great armor if you have it or can get it, and thats Iceblink.

It has to be some of the best armor, although not very high defensive rating, it is very usefull thru normal and even early NM.
The "freezes target" mod is incredability usefull and makes the Pallys life so much easier. So if you can get this armor please do and use it.

I have a set with a 10% resist all jewel in it and will give it to my merc when he gets his natural resists up enough. When a merc is wearing it he is very effective and it really helps his tanking ability since every monster he hits freezes.

A very good normal mode weapon can be made with a 3 socket non-magical Long Sword or War Sceptor. It is" Kings Grace" using the runes-
Amn
Ral
Thul

A very good shield called Rhyme can be made with any 2 socket shield preferably a Herarldic Pally shield with some good mods already on it. It uses the runes-
Shael
Eth

A very good helm called Lore can be made with
Ort
Sol
Runes.

You can also in the early game make a very good weapon called "steel" with the very common runes-
Tir
El
which you can sometimes get in act 1 and for sure act 2 normal.

Cold damage, I can't say enough about it, get it either through your weapon or preferably with charms, all it takes to freeze and shatter a monster is 1 point of cold damage, so you don't need alot.

Try to get the fastest weapon you can very fast is good also you can use Sceptors to take up the slack on some skills you don't have points for that you want to beef up or try.

Again a War Sceptor (the long big one) is preferable due to its increased damage usually 10-17 and its very fast speed.

Long Swords are also very good again with their very fast speed.

Any mods on your equipment such as Deadly strike-
Crushing Blow
Open wounds
prevent monster heal
chance to cast when striking

Are all very good even at a low % since the Pally with Zeal and a very fast weapon hits very fast and will kick these mods in very frequently.

Now on to the good stuff.

This is a Pally variant that I dubbed the Tankadin, he is much like the Defiant Pally but with one main difference, he does not use Defiance his merc does, a act 2 normal Desert merc.

I choose this route to provide the Paladin with strength in one of his weakest areas, defense and also hit points which are rather low for a melee fighter.

You may be saying why not hire a Holy Freeze merc and have your Pally with Defiance?

My answer is that I am of the opnion that your merc should compliment your skills not use a skill that your character relies on, if the merc dies (and they do) there goes one of your main skills with him.

More on this see the Hell Ancients below section.

This is not a guide for the "speed freak" players it is a defensive build but very capable of dishing out damage as well as taking it.

With patence, some skill, and following this guide somewhat you can get a Paladin thru the game and thru Hell mode without dying, and one that can take being surrounded and still come away alive.

First off the key, or at least one of the keys was hiring the act 2desert merc with "Defience", this allowed to make up one of the Pallys main weaknesses lack of hit points and defense.

Unlike the Barb he has no passive skills or warcrys to pump him up or his hit points up. He also does not have the insane amount of hit points or damage of a Druid Werewolf.

So the only way to make a "tank" with a Pally is to either give him Defience or to hire a merc with it.


Since it (Defience) is pretty much a wasted skill for the Pally it is better to get the merc with it and let the Pally use Holy Freeze instead of hiring a merc with it.

Another question you may ask is why not the Avenger? Who uses Vengence as his main attack on PIs, there are a few good reasons-

Very mana intense, average of 10 mana per swing.

A very slow one hit at a time attack, vrs using Zeal and Conviction with Zeals relative fast attack and only 2 mana for 5 swings.

Just a note on the Paladins auras.
They all except for Fantatisicm take approx. 3 seconds to kick in and take effect, and last 8 seconds. This is were "flashing" auras comes into play.

For this build you can use Holy Freeze to slow the monsters, then use Conviction meanwhile you have 5 seconds left on HF then if you want you can end your attack with Fantatisicm for fast life leeching. Then just simply rinse and repeat. This is the method I used all through NM and Hell mode. So you can without too much fancy finger-key work use all three skills one after another and even have all three working.

Below is how my Pally ManOWar's stats where at the end of the game-

Here are his skill points note this allows for + skill point items-
Zeal-9
Holy Shield-17
Fantasism-23 (note this shouldn't have been maxed)
Holy Freeze 17 (note this should have been maxed)
Conviction 23 maxed- this is THE main skill
Vengence 6
Cleansing 4 I highy recommend this for any curses and strong posion.

Then all the prerequsites.

Average damage with Conviction and Zeal=950-1400

His stats-
Str-182
Dex=213 A word here about dex, around 14o base will be plenty to use Baranars and to keep you blocking at 75%.
Vititalty=211
Energy-base to start no points where added.

This is as he was equiped at the end of the game-

Shaftstop with 25% ED jewel
Vamp Gaze
Thundergods Vigor belt alternate -String Of Ears
Infernostrides boots
HOZ shield with UM socketed
Baranars Star with PSkull socketed
ammy=Highlords Wraith
Ring 1 = Raven Frost
Ring2= rare with 7% life leech, +115 to AR, 3 to mana 18 to life
Gloves= Laying Of Hands- alternate Hellmouth
Weapon switch= Bone wand with 69 charges of LifeTap

That covers that.

The main thing was after some points got built up in Conviction was using it and Zeal along with flashing HF. I really didn't need to max Fantatisicm since once I got to act 5 normal I hardly used it. Instead I should have maxed HF. Anywere from 10-15 points into Fantatisicm will be plenty since once you get 10-15 points into Conviction it will along with Zeal and Holy Freeze be your main attack.

The key also was as explained the merc and a very high defense rating, if it can't hit you it can't hurt. That is also why I chose to go with Shaftstop rather than a higher defense armor like -
Black Hades
Griswalds
The PDR IMO is very important for a Paladin due again to his relatively low hit points.

Holy Shield is also a must skill and I recommend maxing it mainly for the high defense boost it gives on your shield which at slvl 20 is 320%, take that with a high base defense shield like the Herald Of Zakarum and your defense from the shield will be over 2500.
Since the Pally is the master at blocking, it is his lifeline and guard against taking numerous hits, which if he did he would not last very long.

Think about the fact that when blocking is maxed at 75% only 25% of a monsters hits are getting thru, add in the very big defense rating and even less. The ones that do get thru, around one in twelve, are then reduced by PDR equipment.

This is one of the things that helps keep a Pally alive and allows him to be capable , with cautious play, to complete all 3 settings without dying.

I used many life and elemental damage charms since lowering monster resistances and defense was the main aim of this build and countering that was me doing large elemental damage.

Although you usally don't have to worry about doing elemental damage till Hell, Conviction is still a great, great, skill since it at max lowers monsters defense by 90% and their resists by 125% but in real life -100%. So a monster with 75% resists would with maxed Conviction now have -50% resists. In effect allowing you to do more elemental damage.

So making up for a onehanded weapon user, Conviction leaves the monsters bascially without defense and makes it where the Pally connects with 90% of his swings, much like using a ITD weapon.


Dexerity also does not have to be as high as I had it, since if you use Conviction at high levels you don't need high dex to achieve a 90-95% to hit.

Holy Freeze is also a very important skill since when maxed it allows you slow the monsters down by 53% and it covers about 3 screens. So you are taking less hits and giving more. The hits that do land on you are then reduced by PDR gear.

With such a high Defensive rating with my merc 10,000+, that means that about 1 in12 hits a monster makes will actually do damage. I had to take very few potions thru most of NM and Hell. due to this high def rating.



For OB Knights I used Vengence with Medation to replentish mana and it worked fine.

I guess that about covers it, your main skills again are-
Zeal 2 allowing for + skill items to bring it up to 5 total.
Conviction Max
Holy Freeze Max
Holy Shield Max
Fantatisicm anywhere from 6-15 points this is not a main skill used but a skill used to gain very fast life leech.

The Hell Ancients-

This is just a short explaination of how I managed to get by them and why you don't want to have to rely on your mercs aura as a replacement for one that you can use.

I went to the lower right corner and opened a TP and dropped a dozen fat purples.

Then I walked a straight line from Korlics statue to the alter.
Once the altar was activated I quickly ran back to where Korlic came alive , at this time I had Holy Freeze activated to slow all three Ancients down. I ran up to Korlic meanwhile I flashed Conviction, and started beating on him, meanwhile I guess my merc started on the other two.

He then died shortly after, I had Korlic almost done flashing between HF and Conviction, when I heard his little scream, and knew that I now had no merc to help, (thus my not getting a HF merc).

I finally finished Korlic and took on the other two without many problems and 3-6 fat purples.

If my merc would have had HF and not my Pally I seriously doubt my Pally would have made it though the fight alive. It was HF that slowed them down enough that gave my Pally some advantage.

Thats about it thanks for reading any comments welcome.

Hope this helps some of you.


Note I will be adding to and adjusting this guide.

Update, I am now re-writing this guide and will post it when complete. 9/20/02

__________________
All Pure Single Player-PATRIARCH Druid-WW Frodo - PATRIACH-Strider Tankadin Pally lvl 78- PATRIARCH ManOWar lvl 78 Tankadin Pally-
PATRIARCH Outlander lvl 79 Frost Tankadin Pally- -PATRIARCH Sherman lvl 78 Tankadin Pally-- Champion AragornLOR lvl 73 Striderdin Pally -Aragorn lvl 31 ParaRanger Pally-EldarionLOR lvl 7 Striderdin pally

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Old Post 22-08-2002 07:21 AM
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Darkness
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quote:
Originally posted by Spearthrower
Great idea gents....... Ahhhh the wonders of modern admin! =)

1 sunny day I will sit and write up some Variant build guides that I've played........

I would still like to see a nice collection of "cookie cutter" guides to compliment the SPishness needed for our forum!



Hmm I'm not sure that we need to have any cookie cutter guides up on this forum. The guides in the stratgey sections of D2 are more than ample for the purposes of building a cookie cutter character in the MP or the SP game and SP guides of the nature would largely replicate that information.

Nice guide Greybeard. In think it says alot for the strength of the character that he made it through all the 3 difficulties without dying once.

It also shows your skill playing the game.

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Old Post 22-08-2002 07:44 AM
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Black-Shadow
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Finally my idea came to fruition albeit in the hands of Spearthrower YAY the Character guides are at the top of the forum *does a little dance*.

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Old Post 22-08-2002 12:54 PM
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Bloodrose
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Location: Raleigh, NC, USA
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There is a relatively old copy of my Necromancer guide here, but please be aware that I am re-tooling it and will hopefully have a pretty HTML version of it up sometime in the near-ish (2 to 3 weeks) future.

The guide is based on Madorgar, who has been far more successful than I would have imagined him to be. I believe Asmodeous has also built a Necromancer based on that document, although his build differs from Madorgars in a few key ways.

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Matriarchs Blood-Rose, Ailesh, Isis, Incantatrix · Patriarch Madorgar · Champion Adrienne · Slayers Dargrim, Oasis
Today I post here. / Tomorrow there will be no / more replies. Booyah.

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Old Post 22-08-2002 02:28 PM
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Zolgar the Insane
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Well, only red the WW guid, and part of that, but I have to point out one mistake:

Feral Rage is Life Leech only, no ML

That's why I like having a point in hunger, have that on right click and attack with that really face, and I regain all the mana that just went down the crapper from using fury and having no mana leech

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Old Post 22-08-2002 05:01 PM
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Greybeard
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NOTE:

Please put any questions about any of the guides in the form of a post not here.

Otherwise this thread will be huge and too hard for someone to access.

Thank You.

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All Pure Single Player-PATRIARCH Druid-WW Frodo - PATRIACH-Strider Tankadin Pally lvl 78- PATRIARCH ManOWar lvl 78 Tankadin Pally-
PATRIARCH Outlander lvl 79 Frost Tankadin Pally- -PATRIARCH Sherman lvl 78 Tankadin Pally-- Champion AragornLOR lvl 73 Striderdin Pally -Aragorn lvl 31 ParaRanger Pally-EldarionLOR lvl 7 Striderdin pally

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Old Post 22-08-2002 05:10 PM
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Toa3t
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Registered: Mar 2002
Location: Oregon
Posts: 2341

Hmm, I have a Frenzier guide in the works, I hope it will be a bit more informative than Eye of Sauron's
-Kev-

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Old Post 22-08-2002 10:06 PM
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Zolgar the Insane
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The Crusher. -Maul only barbarian

Heh, why not write one? Pardon the poor spellings and the tendancy to ramble.


---------------------
Like Spear Thrower's guide, I will try to avoid noting items that are a 'must have', I will however note things I personally like for specific atributes.

Class strong points: Heavy physical damage, the ability to eat PIs and undead alive, and, being damn gool looking while they're at it.

Weak points: Bad AC, bad AR, rather slow, no shield (poor resists and no blocking), pathetic blocking IF you have a shield on.

(side note: this build can also be used with an axe, but then you're just not a crusher any more, you're a chopper )

Base skills:
Mace mastery: maxed
BO: 15+
Warcry: 10+
Con: 10+* (some will say 1. But, hell, I'm the one writing this!)
'Zerk: 10+*
Leap attack: 1
Increased speed: 1
Nat res: 1-5
prereqs: 1

Placement:
Start off by putting as many points in to MM as you can spare, but, I always find it worth my while ot save points for the next level which I will gain new skills, minimum is 1 per skill I'll need. When you get Con, boost it to atleast 5, that's going to be your primary attack for a while. then boost BO 'till you hit level 30, holding on to atleast 1 extra point (so apon reaching 30 you have 2) for level 30, there put one in 'zerk and one in nat- res. Having 3 points is prefered, so you can take Warcry right away as well though.

*Con and 'Zerk are going to be your two primary attack skills, bets are you'll want to leave one around ten and max the other. Which you do is up to you: Maxed con give you good physical damage (=LL), a bonus to your defense as you swing, and if you get hit you're not stopped. On the other hand: Maxed 'zerk gives you GODLY magic damage (=no LL), which allows you to drop most any PI critter (other than uniques) in one his, and do full damage in hell mode. The problem is, it 0s out your def while attacking, and is interuptable.

Stats:
str: 225, give or take abit depending on your weapon of choice and +str equipment
dex: base (maybe more if you decide to go with a chopper)
vit: absolutly everything you don't put in to str
eng: Duh, don't even -look- at energy

Placement: Everything in to str untill you can use a maul (unless you're not twinking, the build str and vit evently, making sure though to be in the 70's by the time you're late act 2/early act 3), then put your vit through the roof. if you mule and have a higher level character, start building trength again so when you hit 25 you can use a war club (27 if you have an Honor one set asside, like I did!). Basicly from there, build vit mostly, and put strength in when you think you'll be needing it, you'll want to hit your max sometime in mid hell if you're going no twinking, or if you're twinking, whenever you have a really good elite maul/greatmaul waiting for you.

General equipment:
You're going to need all the IAS you can get, simple as that. Otherwise? +life is good, but don't sacrifice much for it, +skills are always fun. +skills = +damage +damage = dead things!
Resists are really important, especially before you face Diablo! But, if you have a few + masteries, +barbarian skill or +all skill items when you hit level 30, your resists are going to be good to go untill you hit NM

Some item recomendations:
if you're twinking, I advise (if you have it) giving your crusher Sigons Complete Steel (-shield, ofcourse), this will give you IAS (30%), MF (40%), +stats, LL (10%, atleast), FRW (+40%) and several other things. that will last you along time. when you're level 27, try to get an Honor War Club, great damage! your Sigon's set will still do you good at this point, but you can upgrade if you want: My advise: never ditch the gloves and belt!

Honor war club, Sigons belt, boots and gloves, and the best other equipment twinkage can get you, especialy if you can bum a Manald Heal off someone, or get Silks of the Victor (like I had), you'll be set for in to nightmare. I believe I was in act 5 NM when I got Blood Tree Stump, before then I was using an Honor War Club.. And at level 63 I still have sigons belt and gloves equiped.

Anyhoo, back on to the build:

At first, especialy if you have a maul in hand, you'll find bash to be an excelent toy, even better if something gives you ML. For your early levels (untill you get con) bash is your bestest fwend. With reasonable twinkage, you won't even notice acts 1 and 2 on players 8

Act 3: Pain in the ***! If you're like me: you'll skip it, come back in a few levels and complete everything when you have Warcry. If you do this, get the Lower Kurast and Durance 2 waypoints: level in Kurast for a while (to level 27 if you have the honor warclub waiting>yes, I like honor war clubs!), and then go kill Meph (mephisto fell in 3 hits to my honor war club on players 1 )

Act 4: abit of an annoyance untill you hit level 30. But so long as you have decent resists and heavy armor you'll be fine (untill you hit the river of flame. Kill Diablo at around level 30, you're still using Con, you'll kick his ***. You want 'zerk for the Oblivion Knights, Leap attack works as well though. Don't worry: with your maul, they'll die fast (especialy if you're a chicken like I am and drop players 8).
Use War Cry on the group of Balrogs from the center of them and just crush them, no problems there.
Do whatever you please with the finger mages, they're cake.
Lord de Sissies and his pets: 'zerk or LA them. If you don't like those options, TP every time you get hit with IM

Act 5: you're god! No stratagy needed. Clever use of Warcry and Battle Cry makes even the toughest things fall with you taking no damage (or if you do you leech it back right away). Only annoying thing is the imps, but by now your HP is so high you don't feel them. They are easy enough to kill with this build though, hit them with Warcry and them smack 'em.

Only risks are: Nihlathak, if you kill him (I didn't), and the second (sometimes, depends on your poison resist and poison duration reduction) and fifth summons of baal. Listser CAN be a problem, but if you've boosted warcry enough to have good range and duration, him and his cronies die fast without you having many problems. This is one of those places where Con always beats 'zerk, getting stunloacked while attacking sucks.

On to nightmare: *yawns* See above, it's all the same, except now even act 3 is cake! Watch out for Bartuc though, he can spawn MSLE, and that -can- hurt (didn't bother me)

On to hell: Heh, I'm not even half way through act 1 hell yet. But, here is where 'zerk starts being important, it's still not too bad (yet) I do advise leveling abit in NM act 5, just because hell mode is a pain in the ***.

Mercs:

Most told me you don't need a merc, and this is very true, but I like mercs. your best options are (IMO)

Rogue (either, I used cold): most people don't give this cute thing enough credit. She -finally- died in act 1 hell to something that almost killed me (fanat+LE+something else corrupt rogue), she can do good damage and as long as she gets good leech, live a while. especialy if you're ready to leap over ad help her. a big + to rogues is them using inner sight, helps you hit with your shiatty AR.

Act 2 mercefiance is good, but, well, when you use 'zerk your def is 0'd out, still not bad though, not being hit is never a bad thing (unless you're a thorns person). Blessed aim can be fery helpfull. Prayer- don't waste your time! Thorns is good if you want to be a purist and let yourself get hit alot Might: Can you say UBER damage? Holy Freeze: Usefull, for sure, but eh *shrugs* it's kinda silly.

In general tactics:
Uhm, duh.. hit things!

Okay, seriously, I will always refresh BO, it takes like no mana and running out is just.. bad

I have found the war cry "Battle Cry" to be a great on for use (especialy if you don't use a merc which will increase you AR or decrese your enemies AC), you get surounded, send off war cry, then battle cry and you've just stunned and made eerything easier to hit.

Use Warcry to stun charging enemies, frenzied minotaurs and all sorts of things, making for a very fun killing spree. If you opt to go back to normal for something, watch things just die around you like a nova sorc!

Other than that: All the normal barbarian tactics.

Any questions or comments, PM me

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Old Post 23-08-2002 12:45 AM
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asmodeous
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Registered: Nov 2001
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Posts: 366

yeah, i did make a necro mancer based largely on that guide bloodrose. would be good to see it up online.

i have a couple of guides up at another forum currently. one is a pure zealot thats similar to nikodemus222 elemental zealot guide and the other is a tri elementalist sorcie. would it be ok if i posted either a link to them, or the contents here, or neither?

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Old Post 23-08-2002 04:40 AM
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Gawgan
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Registered: Apr 2002
Location: Brisbane, Australia
Posts: 828

Hmm yes well i had a Ranger guide in the works... which i converted to Single Play once someone else beat me to it

I lost it, sadly, when i lost my characters in my hard drive crash.

and i really couldnt be bothered writing another one :P

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Old Post 23-08-2002 05:25 AM
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Darkness
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SP Necromancer Overlord Guide (Very Long)
Hermit Boy’s SP Necromancer Overlord
(reprinted here by Darkness, before it wanders off to the nth page and we forget all about it, which we shouldn't, coz its very good)

Background: First off, I need to mention a few things about the Necromancer. He is unlike nearly any other build out there. Most builds for the 6 other character types can be considered to be like a soldier, whether long range or short range. This build is considered to be a General. This build requires some patience to play. However, it is incredibly fun and rewarding. The killing is not too much slower than some of the other characters, but you will not be doing most of it, your minions will be. So if you have the patience and desire, read on…

My Necromancer achieved Patriarch status at clvl 71 which is 5 or more levels lower than any of my other characters, so he is definitely a viable build. There are a lot of variations on this build, as well as other Necro builds that are just as viable.

STATS:

Strength -- As with pretty much any build, only enough to equip the items you are interested in using. Lower down I will list some of the coveted items and the strengths required.

Dexterity – Base. You will not be swinging at monsters, and if played right, you will not get hit much, so you don’t need a high DR or block %.

Vitality – Around 100 or more if you are so inclined. You will want a lot here, but it is not critical. Again, if played right, you will not be hit very much at all. If you can get your life to around 400 or more, you will be doing fine.

Energy – Around 150 or more would be good. This can be greatly changed depending on how you are going to play so we will get into that a little later. This build is not greatly dependant on mana, but there are times where you will run low, and the Necro is not the store of mana that a Sorceress can be.

As you will see from the numbers above, you will have a surplus of stat points. Spread them between Vitality and Energy as you see fit.

EQUIPMENT:

Since this is single player, it is a good bet that many people will not be able to make the ‘Ideal’ list of equipment. I will list the best uniques and sets just in case, but also give more general item suggestions.

Rule #1 -- The most important thing you can have on an item is +skills. +skills beats any other attribute you can get on an item. I cannot stress that enough. For this build, +summoning skills is preferred to the other trees, but you will be using skills from all 3 trees, so get the + to all skills if possible.

Head -- Ideally you would want Harlequins crest unique shako. That is an incredible item. One of my other characters found this beauty, but it was ethereal. I gave it to my Necro, and he used it for 9 clvls and most of Hell difficulty and never broke it. That gives you an idea of how little a necro will get hit. A good alternative to that would be a +necro skills circlet which should be reasonably easy for anyone to get hold of. Lore runeword or peasant crown would also be good.

The most strength you would need for a helm is 50 for the Harley.

Hands – Frostburns are good for the mana, but I would suggest Trang-ouls claws if you can find them to give you the +2 to curses. Maybe Magefists for the mana regeneration and fast cast. Other good stats would be + mana or life.

Strength for Frostburns would be 60 which is not too much to ask.

Feet – Faster run/walk is a very good stat, as it will help keep you out of harms way. Silkweave boots are very nice for the mana, but pretty much anything will work.

65 Strength is needed for Silkweaves, but they are worth it.

Belt – Tal-Rasha’s belt is pretty good, but the best would be Gloomstrap. Maybe even Lenymo if you can handle not having many potion slots. Again, +life and mana would be good

You need 45 str for Tal Rasha’s belt, which is definitely doable.

Armor – Trang Oul’s Armor would be great, but for 84 strength, it may be a bit much. It is also probably not the best. There are a lot of unique armors with +1 to all skills which would work well. Skin of the vipermagi or Que-Hagans wisdom would be best. If you cannot get +skills on armor, forget about defense rating and go for stat increases or +life or mana.

Skulders is a whopping 97 str to wear, but most of the other +skills armors are all below 55 str to wear. Except for Silks of the Victor which I would not recommend.

Sheild – Pretty much the only choice here is a good Shrunken head with + skills. The Homonculus is ideal, but any other with + skills would be good. Always stay on the lookout for a good shrunken head.

The Homonculus is 58 str which really is not much. Some of the elite unique shrunken heads require a lot of strength to use, but they are probably not worth it. As long as you find the right +skills, the defense and blocking are not important.

Weapon – Again, the only choice is a good wand. Ideally the Blackhand key or Arm of King Leoric is best, but the other unique wands are also very good. Or if you find a magic one with the right +skills it would work just as well also.

The strength requirement for wands are negligible. 25 or so for most of the best ones.

Charms are also good, especially +skills ones. Use +life and +mana, and +str as needed to equip your items.

Generally, defense is not something you need to worry about. You will not be getting hit. + resistances are also not nearly as important as you would think. You should not be getting hit very much at all. Watch out for poison tho as it can be kind of nasty.

SKILLS:

Curses Tree

I strongly recommend putting 1 point into each and every curse, and no more than that. Each curse will come in handy in certain situations. With only 1 point in each curse, you will benefit from the +skills items you will have and that will boost the curses to a high enough level.

Generally, higher skill in curses only helps duration and radius. A high duration is great, but too high a radius is not necessarily a good thing. There are sometimes separate groups of monsters that you want to curse with different curses, and if the radius is too big, it is not possible to do. As for duration, curses do not drain much mana, so recasting them as needed is not costly.

I will describe each of curse and their uses later in the Strategy section.

Poison and Bone Tree

Bone Armor – Worth 1 point here. With +skills items it will be enough. This skill is mainly good to deter 1-hit-kills when you accidentally get too close to the action. I would recommend getting used to keeping it running constantly.

Bone Wall and Bone Prison – Not worth any points. They are actually detrimental as they will impede your minions as much or more than the enemy.

Corpse Explosion – Only 1 point. This is an awesome skill, but there are some problems with using it in this build. The effectiveness is less in Hell difficulty because of the 50% global physical resistances, as well as the large amounts of PIs and FIs. Also, you will be raising a ton of skeletons and revives, so having corpse explosion dispose of the corpses is not a good idea. However, it may get you out of some tough spots, so it is worth investing the 1 point.

Poison Nova – 1 or more. This is not a bad little spell. In Hell about all it does is to keep the monsters from regenerating, but that is not a bad thing. I like it because you can keep casting it every 2 seconds and feel like you are doing something instead of just picking your nose in the background. If you want to use it, put at least one point in it and more if you have extra points or like to use it.

Bone Spear and Bone Spirit – Max Bone Spirit, 1 on Bone Spear as a prereq. I strongly suggest Bone Spirit over Bone Spear. The benefit of Spear is that it has a lower mana cost and hits multiple enemies. However, it does less damage. It is better than Spirit as a crowd control spell, but crowd control is not going to be your problem with this build. The weakness in this build is boss monsters, and Spirit handles them MUCH better than Spear. More on this in the Strategy section.

Summoning Tree

Skeleton Mastery – Max this. In fact, it is one of the first skills you will want to max out. This will keep your pathetic skeletons from dying too fast, and will help their paltry amount of damage. OK, I am being a little cynical, but this is still a very important skill.

Raise Skeleton – 1 with more points as needed. With a decent amount of +skills items, you should have close to a dozen skeletons. These skeletons act mainly as ‘cannon fodder’ to keep monsters away from you and to keep some of the damage away from your merc and golem. They die awfully fast, but they are cheap to create. In your role as general, you will mainly stay busy by creating these things by the truckload. I found that around 10-15 skeletons were sufficient. Any more points into this skill and you will start to run out of corpses to create them from.

Raise Skeletal Mage – 5 or more. Start with 1 point until you start to have spare points, then start putting more here. These mages actually do a fair amount of damage unlike the normal skeletons. They also stay alive a little longer as they like to stay away from the actual fighting. Too many points here and you will start running out of corpses to create them all.

Summon Resistance – 1 point. With all of your +skills, you will get enough from this. Any more points is a waste because of the diminishing returns.

Revive – 1 point. With +skills you will have enough for a decent revive army. Since these things last only 3 minutes, it is unlikely you can keep more than a dozen or so going at a time. What with all the skeletons and mages you will have also.

Golems – Here you have a choice. I would suggest ruling out the Clay and Blood Golems. They have a lot less life and do a lot less damage. The Iron Golem and Fire Golem are both very good and so it is kind of a toss up as to which you want. I would suggest putting 1 point in both to start just to see which you prefer. No loss if you choose the Fire golem, and only 1 point lost if you choose the Fire, but then you can also use the Fire golem if the situation calls for it.

The benefit of the Iron golem is that it has thorns. Thorns is good for Normal and Nightmare, but loses some effectiveness in Hell. It also can have a higher defense if made from armor, or a higher damage if made from a weapon.
The benefits of the Fire golem is that it has a lot more life, defense, and damage depending on what the Iron golem is made from. Due to the 50% global physical resistance, Fire golems usually do more damage in Hell. The Fire golem also uses holy fire to damage monsters. The damage is negligible in most cases, but does serve to attract monsters to itself which is kind of nice usually. This clusters the monsters around which can be useful. You can also use the Fire golem as a fire bomb. I will describe that later.

MERCENARY:

I personally think using anything but an Act II Desert merc is a waste. So I will only comment on them. The reason for this is that with their aura, you have 30 or more minions that it is helping out, not just you and the merc.

Blessed Aim Merc– Not a very good choice. Your skeletons do so little damage anyway, it is not worth making sure they can hit. They are only there as a shield. Also, it does not help you at all, or your mages.

Defiance Merc – Moderately good choice. This will keep your minions from being hit, which keeps them alive longer. Will also help you, your merc and golem. However, later in the game, especially Hell, this will not be really effective, plus it does not protect them from magic damage.

Prayer Merc – This is a very good choice. This merc will help keep your minions from dying quite as fast. Also, it will allow you to not have to invest as many points into Vitality.

Thorns Merc – This is a good choice. Monsters will beat themselves to death trying to kill your skeletons. However, its effectiveness is a lot less in Hell or when playing ‘players 8’ and also does not do anything when they are attacked by magic or ranged attacks.

Might Merc – Not a very good choice. It will help your merc, revives, and your Iron golem if you have one. However, the damage that the skeletons dish out will not be boosted enough by this aura to be worth it. It may help your revives, but only if they make physical attacks.

Holy Freeze Merc – Good choice. It is always nice to slow down your enemies, and will help your minions to stay alive longer.

As you can see, I would suggest a prayer merc to keep your minions, and you, alive longer.

STRATEGY:

I kept ‘players 8’ on all through Normal and most of Nightmare difficulty. This makes your minions much harder to kill, but it also makes battles longer. However, ‘players 8’ also makes Poison Nova and Corpse Explosion almost useless.

Do not run too fast and let your minions too far behind you. I found that when I did this, the skeletons would often die instead of teleporting to you like the merc or golem will.

Use ‘click lock’ when casting Bone Spirit. If you click on a monster, and hold the button down, you can still fire Spirits at them even if they teleport or run off the screen. Very useful for the imps in Act V and the fetishes in Act III.

You can use the Fire golem as a fire bomb by repeatedly summoning it in a group of monsters. This creates fire splash damage when it dies. Doing this can be very costly manawise, but can be effective in some situations.

Build up your army in an easy area before going harder. In Hell Act V I would often take a waypoint back to Act I to build my army up before going back to Act V. If you are building your army in a tough area, it is a good idea to start with the revives. They can take a huge amount of damage and tank for the skeletons and skeletal mages as you are creating them.

Dispose of every corpse you can. Especially when around monsters that revive corpses like the fetishes, fallen, or unravellers. Also dispose of those zombie corpses that come back to life in Act V. Do this by turning them into skeletons or mages if you are not at your max amount. If you are at the max amount of skeletons and mages, turn them into revives even if you are at the max amount of revives.

Revives only last 3 minutes, so they will often start to spontaneously die when you do not want them to. You can get past this by reviving constantly even when at the max amount. This will kill off the revives with the least amount of time left and replace them with revives that have a full 3 minutes to live. Sometimes this gets rid of good revives quicker, but it will at least keep a full amount of revives around.

As most people understand, poison damage does not stack. When using poison nova it is not worth spamming. Just cast it when they are no longer green. Some of the mages you raise will have poison damage. If there are too many throwing poison around, you may want to unsummon some of them as they will not be too effective.

Avoid cold damage on your merc. When mosters shatter they do not leave a corpse to raise. Some of your mages will have cold damage, so there will be some corpses shattering, but try to minimize it.

If you can find an item with teleport charges keep it in your weapon switch. Not only can it help you get out of sticky situations, it will also help you regroup your minions together.

Very narrow areas, such as the maggot lair, can be frustrating since your minions cannot maneuver very well. When entering these places, you may want to just drop down to your merc and golem with no skeletons or revives. When monsters appear, just retreat back behind your merc to let him fight. Use Bone spirit to support him and keep him healed with potions.


Curses

Here is a list of the curses and how to use them.

Amplify Damage – This is mainly for the benefit of you merc, Iron golem, and melee revives. Your skeletons do so little damage that Amp damage will not help noticeably, at least in Hell. Use this in combination with Corpse explosion also to do more damage. Good choice for your main curse.

Dim Vision -- An incredibly useful and sometimes underrated curse. This only works on normal monsters unfortunately. It blinds them and keeps them in one place. This is mostly useful for monsters that run or teleport around a lot like fetishes or imps. I usually run around in those areas spamming this curse, and let my minions take those monsters out. They die really quickly when they just stand there to take the punishment. Sure they fight back if anything is in melee range, but they usually fall very quickly.

Weaken – Not a really important curse, but may be useful against monsters that do a huge amount of damage.

Iron Maiden – Very useful when fighting monsters dealing heavy melee damage. The effectiveness it a lot less in Hell or with ‘players 8’. The vultures in Act II are particularly susceptible to this curse. Cast it on your Iron Golem for really nasty damage payback to attackers.

Terror – This helps you when you find that your necromancer has been cornered by a group of monsters. Kind of like a panic button. Cast this so all the monsters go running, then retreat to safety. You can also use it for a panic button for your merc or Iron golem if they are about to die. There is also a trick where you can poison a group of monsters, then keep them running using terror while the poison works its damage. Not too effective tho but kind of fun.

Confuse -- This is another of the least useful curses like weaken, but it is nice for a little fun. Use this on large groups so they can occupy themselves by beating on each other. This is particularly useful to keep large groups at bay while you regroup or raise some more minions. Generally tho, they will not

Life Tap -- This is really helpful as it gives your minions, and specifically your merc, a good life leech. If you merc does enough damage you can use this occasionally to heal him, then switch to another curse.

Attract – Not too useful as there are a lot of better curses out there. This can be used if a certain monster is bugging you and you want to occupy them.

Decrepify – This is a very good curse. The duration is short and radius is small, so if you use this a lot it needs to be cast often. I have read conflicting reports of what it does since the full description is not in the game description. It combines weaken, slow monster, and a smaller version of Amp damage. This is a good choice for your main curse.

Lower Resist – This is also a very good and very useful curse. Lowers the resistances of monsters, but it does not take away a monsters immunity. Another good choice for your main curse.

I would choose one of these curses as your main curse. Amp Damage, Decripify, and Lower Resist are all good choices. Cast your main curse at anything that moves and have it as the default on your right mouse button. So which one do you want to use?

Decripify: Not a bad choice, but the amp damage it does is less than the Amp Damage curse. It is nice when it slows monsters, but keep in mind that the radius and duration is very small.

Amp Damage: This is not a bad choice, but it is not going to do a lot to help your skeletons do more damage. It will help your merc, Iron golem, and revives tho.

Lower resist: This is my personal choice. If you have a Fire golem, you will probably want to use this. This curse also greatly helps your Skeletal Mages to get to a decent amount of damage. It will also help if you want to use Poison Nova or Bone Spirit. I also gave my merc a high elemental damage weapon.


Bosses

Bosses are going to be your biggest problem. Even the little mini bosses with a bunch of minions can be a problem. This is why I strongly recommend Bone Spirit. Whenever you meet a boss of any type, start spamming Spirit at them to get rid of them as quickly as possible. You may lose most your mana, but once the boss goes down you can let your minions take out the rest of the pack while you regenerate or drink a potion. ALWAYS focus on the boss first. They are just to dangerous to leave around for long. Cast Lower resist to make Spirit more effective.

Below is a list of the main bosses and how to beat them. For the most part always build your army to capacity before meeting them and spam Bone Spirit at them.

Anadariel -- She is not much of a problem. Stay away from the poison which is not too hard. Building your army before meeting her is easy before opening the door to her lair.

Duriel -- Revives are great as they are pretty good tanks. Keep your Bone Armor on so he cannot one hit kill you. If he does charge and hit you, he will probably dispose of your armor in one hit. DO NOT run away from him again until you have recast Bone Armor. You can absorb his melee hits without much problem, but not his charge. Keep your Merc healed with potions so he can keep Duriels focus away from you.

Council Members – Focus first on killing the non-unique council members, then revive them to help you fight. This is one of the few exceptions to my rule of killing the boss first. You cannot revive unique, champion, or boss monsters, but you can turn them into skeletons or mages. Make sure you have a full army before fighting them, which should not be too hard to do. They are not too bad.

Meph – Your army will steadily diminish when fighting him, but you should be able to kill him before your whole army is gone. If you can revive some Council members for your army, they will help a lot. He is not too difficult as long as you stay away.

Diablo – He is extremely difficult. He will wipe out all your skeletons and mages withing seconds, so do not bother with trying to create new ones during the fight. Try to keep your merc alive and constantly recast your golem to tank. As long as you have a tank and stay back you are in little danger of dying. Keep the balrogs seal on the right hand side of the sanctuary for last, so that you can have them for revives during the fight. Bone Spirit and Lower Resist will be your main method of damaging Diablo, so keep lots of mana or rejuv pots handy. Also, open a portal a ways away as you may need to make a few trips to town during the battle.

Ancients – Surprisingly I had little trouble with them. Make sure you have a huge army when you get to them, even if you have to bum around Act I for a while. They can kill effectively enough, but with an army of 30 or more it will take them a while to get you alone since they have no mass killing abilities. Spam Bone Spirit and try to kill them one at a time. They will try to kill you so you have to run around a lot. Keep your Bone armor up and stay on the move and there is little danger of you dying.

Lister and co. – They are not too difficult. Try to revive some of the Balrogs to have them available when Lister appears. The difficulty is that when the last balrog dies Baal will dispose of the corpses, so you need to revive quickly. If you are not ready when the last balrog dies, run out of the room and get your army built up. You cannot revive any of the minions of destruction unfortunately. Focus on killing Lister first, and you will be fine.

Baal – That magic Iron maiden curse he throws around is dangerous if you are spamming Bone spear. If he casts it on you, run away and wait it out. Keep your merc healthy if possible and keep casting your golem to provide some tanking help. Like Diablo, he will probably make short work of most of your skeletons and mages. Your revives should last a lot longer, so make sure you have a bunch of them before fighting him. Try to stay behind something so that he cannot hit you. But when you are behind something it will block your Spirits, so you may need to stand far away then dodge behind the pillar when he fires at you. Open a portal in the corner so you can retreat back to town. Keep many full rejuvs available.

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Old Post 23-08-2002 06:54 AM
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Darkness
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Registered: Nov 2001
Location: Arashi wo saite kumo kireba
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Here for your viewing pleasure, but for msotly for Greybeards benefit and updating needs, is the SP guides compliation.

Somebody stick Paradox's Megazon guide in here please.

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Old Post 20-09-2002 10:59 AM
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Greybeard
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Registered: Nov 2001
Location: On the highway to hell, littering it with the corspes of hells minions and foul beasts.
Posts: 3078

Thanks much friend!

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Old Post 20-09-2002 11:01 AM
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Bahgoon
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IG comments

quote:
There is a relatively old copy of my Necromancer guide here, but please be aware that I am re-tooling it and will hopefully have a pretty HTML version of it up sometime in the near-ish (2 to 3 weeks) future.


This is a pretty nice guide but I have some comments on you Iron Golem section. The first point is about the golem's capability of staying with you from game to game. The way Blizzard handles this is by recasting the golem everytime you start a game. What this means is that if you use special gear to cast golems (eg, wands and heads with + to mastery and IG) you need to re-equip that gear right before you quit a session. Then it will be active the next game you start and the IG is that much better. A bad point about this is that the IG will always be re-created at Players 1 setting when you start a new Diablo session unless you fiddle by doing things like starting a random game and setting players 8 and then exiting and starting your necro game.

Another point that should be mentioned about IGs is that if you do use their thorns as a damage dealer, then amp damage would be your curse of choice.

-Bahgoon

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Old Post 20-09-2002 12:04 PM
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