Registered: Oct 2001
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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!
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
STATS PLACEMENT AIMS:
this allows you to wear good armour and use Balrog Spears if this is your preferred weapon
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"
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....
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.
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.
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!
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.
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
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.
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.
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.
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
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'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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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 !
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.
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!!!!
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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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