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Diablo II Single Player Thread - 2

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

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  1. dmc

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

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    We actually reached 1000 posts in the first one of these (shows what kind of staying power this game has and what kind of geeks we are).

    I'm debating whether to start an Amazon without Titan's in my possession.
     
  2. dmc

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

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  3. Balle Gems: 19/31
    Latest gem: Aquamarine


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    i\m afraid it returns a 404 dmc
     
  4. dmc

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

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    Hmmm. I think their forums are down now for some reason.
     
  5. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

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

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    I read the guide. That's a lot different than I'm building my amazon. I'm not saying it won't work, but that's not the plan I'm going with.

    I don't have any issue with spending 20 points on CS/LF. That gives you a melee and missile attack. Of course, that does leave the problem of what to do against lightning immunes. In the author's opinion, these are best dealt with by means of a spending 40 points in the bow tree on cold and freezing arrow. My plan was to get my second damage type from physical damage, and getting some help from a valkyrie, merc, and one of my one-point wonder skills like fend or jab.

    So 20 of the 40 points I won't spend in the arrow tree will go to valkyrie, with the other 20 points into penetrate. The guide does concern me somewhat, as it says even with 20 points in penetrate, you won't have a great AR rating, but I'm also assuming that since I'll be using a shield I'll also have a high dexterity, and those things working in unison would be OK.

    I also have used a bowazon before, with strafe as her main attack (which also gives no bonus to AR), and with penetrate maxed out, and not a great dexterity, it wasn't like my attack rating was THAT bad. In fact, the main downfall of that character was not the attack rating, but the damage, (as dexterity investement increases the damage from bows).

    But my first thought was to get a merc valk combo going. Not only are they great meat shields, but a defensive merc and a valk are great tanks. A high level valk isn't a clay golem, but is MUCH more durable than a merc. When I was playing my bowazon, the only thing that really gave her problems were frenzytaurs. She hardly ever died, which is more than I could say about my merc. Undecided if I want to go with a holy freeze or defensive merc.
     
  6. Sir Rechet

    Sir Rechet I speak maths and logic, not stupid Veteran

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    Amazon has an excellent combo with Freezing Arrow and Lightning Fury. Instead of having one main attack and a backup attack that just feels lame to use when you're forced to it, you get two main attacks.

    However, both feel notably lacking in taking down single opponents and/or widely spread groups. You actually score kills MUCH faster if you herd your enemies into clumps before letting loose with the offense. Yes, considering both the time to bring down one specific enemy and the whole group.

    Herding really only works well against melee attackers plus you kinda need lots of space to do it. Running into an extra fast fanat boss pack in Hell level is going to get ya killed if you're to do this haphazardly.

    Then again, I'm royally spoiled by my previous slaughterer, a Zealot using Grief AND dual Dreams. That beast weighs in at around 30,000 damage per second, BEFORE considering the aura pulse or deadly strike/crushing blow..
     
  7. dmc

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

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    Still on the fence about what I'm running next, so I trotted out the Necro last night. Meph dropped a Gheeds (first one I ever found -- 36% MF, +107% gold, 13% discount), three uniques and a rare as well. When I saw the unique color on the charm, I was puzzled for a half a sec until I remembered that there was one such charm that could drop in unmodded SP. Woot!
     
  8. Cap'n CJ

    Cap'n CJ Arrr! Veteran

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    So, i've reinstalled this game and I feel like kicking it off again. I've got the expansion, so I have all 7 classes open to me. I've always played Skellimancers before, but I fancy a change. Basically, I want you guys to convince me on a class and spec :) I know next to nothing about the others, i'm afraid. I'm interested in Druid, however.
     
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2010
  9. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

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

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    Took my WW Barb out again last night. I'm not motivated with my Amazon now, as dmc's guide that he linked to had me reconsider what I want to do with my Zon. The problem with the guide he posted is that if I go with Cold and Freezing Arrow, it means I have to forgo Penetrate and Valkyrie, and probably will have to severely limit my points in Pierce.

    @Cap'n: If you are planning on getting into D2 again, i.e., play more than one class through the game, then a skellimancer is probably your best option, as they can farm equipment you'll need for other classes. In short:

    Barbs: A concentrate barb also has excellent survivability, and can be used as a good "starter" character.

    Druids: A shapeshifter druid can be a good starter character, but elemental druids are extremely item dependent, so I'd advise against that type of druid for a first go-round.

    Sorceresses: A dual elemental sorceress is somewhat item dependent, but not nearly as much as other classes, simply because the only equipment you really need is items that give +skills to whichever skills you use most.

    IMO, paladins, assassins, and amazons are all pretty item dependent, and I'd advise against all three as your first character.

    I can definitely give you a bunch of helpful tips once you decide on a character, but I really need you to give me a direction you're interested in (at least between spell casting, melee and ranged), before I can really help you out.
     
  10. Cap'n CJ

    Cap'n CJ Arrr! Veteran

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    Shapeshifter Druid could be a laugh, what are they like to play?
     
  11. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

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

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    It depends on whether you are a werebear or a werewolf. Both are melee characters, that get up close and personal to kill. It's the classic decision between speed versus power. WW have higher attack ratings, hit faster, but for less damage. WB have more life, attack much slower, but do more damage per hit. WB also get a defense bonus, and a high level WB can actually get a defense high enough (with good armor of course) to make it very difficult for enemies to hit you even on hell difficulty.

    There's no "right" choice. It's personal preference. A third option is to put just a single point into both WW and WB, max Lycanthropy, and switch between both shapeshifter types.
     
  12. Cap'n CJ

    Cap'n CJ Arrr! Veteran

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    Werewolf is a lot cooler, so i'm more likely to go with that. I'd love to run an Elemental Druid, but if they're that item dependant I can see it being a bit of a nonstarter.
     
  13. dmc

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

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    You can run any character you want -- there's no requirement that you make it through Hell. Plus, if you run a few at the same time, you can share items among them as you go along.
     
  14. Cap'n CJ

    Cap'n CJ Arrr! Veteran

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    That's cool, as Ele Druid sounds fun. How would I go about building one? Are there any talent calculator type things I can use?
     
  15. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

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

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    There are certainly damage calculators out there if you do a google seach that can help you out with damage calculations, but as far as an elemental druid goes, it's pretty straight forward. As with all characters, you need to be able to deliver two damage types. Since most of the elemental druid spells are fire based (and those are also the ones with the best synergies), fire will probably be one of your choices. You want to sink as many points as possible into Volcano and its synergies (like Fissure, Molten Bolder) for a good, solid, area of effect spell.

    Your other damage type will probably be physical, and there are two ways to go with this. If you're willing to sacrifice a bit of fire damage, you can work on the wind-based spells as well (Cyclone, Hurricane). All of the wind-based spells do physical damage. Cyclone is a bit tricky to get used to, but can be a powerful spell at high levels. When a creature is hit by the cyclone, it gets knocked backwards. Since the cyclone continues after it hits a creature (it keeps going until it hits a solid object, like a rock or wall), it is possible to hit the same creature multiple times with a single casting, as it will get knocked away, but still in the path of the cyclone.

    The other option is to let others do the physical damage for you, by hiring a merc and investing in the summoning tree. I would highly advise taking an Act II Holy Freeze Merc for this build, as you'll get two damage types from him.

    There's a few basic rules for the summoning tree. There are three types of vines, three types of spirits, and three types of animal companions (four if you count Ravens, but I don't ever use them). The thing is, you can only have one of each type. To use the animal companions as an example, the three choices are dire wolves, spirit wolves, and grizzly. While you can invest points in all of three animal companions, you can only have one of those animal types summoned at any given time. So you can't have a grizzly AND and a dire wolf simultaneously. Similarly, you can have any one of the three types of vines, and any one of the three tpes of spirits summoned at a time. So at any given time, you can have one vine, one spirit and one animal companion.

    All the animal companions are actually pretty similar in damage output, because at level 20, you can summon 5 spirit wolves, 3 dire wolves, or 1 grizzly. The grizzly is a lot tougher individually, but the combined life and damage output of a grizzly is about the same as that of 5 wolves. So the question is if you want one really tough summons, or several weaker summons. The one possible advantage of having several weaker summons is they offer a better measure of protection than a single grizzly, as the enemies will typically have to hack through your summons before they get to you. However, having one great big grizzly is certainly cool.

    You'll want to max your animal companion of choice to 20 points, but the spirits and vines are effective with just a few points, and potentially just a single point. For the spirit, you almost certainly want Oak Sage, as the increases the life total of you, your merc, and your animal companion. For the vine, there are three choices: one sprays poison at enemies (which is actually pretty effective in the early acts), and the other two eat corpses. The one eats corpses and returns a percentage of the creatures life to you, and the other does the same thing with mana. Because you're going to be doing a lot of casting, you may want the bonus mana.

    That should be enough to get you started. With an elemental druid, you always want to be on the look out for items that give you +skills. Druid helms drop from very early in the game, and finding one that gives +1 or +2 to a frequently used skill can be a big help.
     
  16. Cap'n CJ

    Cap'n CJ Arrr! Veteran

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    So I started an Elemental Druid, and i've got one point in Firestorm. I've got 3 points left to spend, is it a good idea to save them for when I can access the next skill? or throw a couple more points into Firestorm to make this bit of the game easier?
     
  17. dmc

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

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    I'll leave that up to AFI, as he's running a druid and I haven't done that yet.

    Aldeth - what say I start up an Amazon according to that guide I posted and you continue yours along the lines you've set up and we see how they fare (ignoring for the moment that you play on Battlenet and I do SP)?

    Even without Titan's, I can't imagine that I won't be able to find some sort of decent replenishing javelins by the time I reall need them.
     
  18. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

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

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    Well, you're going to want one vine, and one spirit, and maybe one animal companion. It cannot hurt to drop a point into Poison Creeper, so later you can access the mana recovery vine. You'll also want at least one point into Oak Sage, but IIRC, you cannot drop a point in that until level 6.

    If Molten Bolder synergizes with other fire skills further down the tree (and I'm nearly certain it does), there's also no harm in investing further in that.

    That said, there's nothing wrong with holding onto skill points. There are many builds where you cannot work on either your main skill or synergies until you are up at higher levels, so it's not necessarily bad to hold onto them. However, if you're planning on maxing out MB as a synergy for a later skill, then you may as well spend them now, so you have a more powerful levelling skill now, and get the bonus damage when the better skills open up later.

    dmc - sounds like a plan, although I do not think I will have an opportunity to play tonight. However, we're supposed to be snowed in with 12-18 inches of snow this weekend, so I should have ample opportunity (although I need to get working on my taxes).
     
  19. Cap'n CJ

    Cap'n CJ Arrr! Veteran

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    Silly question - Why do I need one vine and one animal?

    Also, it turns out my Necro had an awesome item - A helm that gives +2 to Poison Creeper. It's pretty damn useful so far :)
     
  20. dmc

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

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    AFI - considering that I haven't even started the zon yet, it's going to take a while for us to really be able to compare the builds, so don't feel like you need to rush or anything.
     
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