1.07 Build Guides A popular opinion of the raw LoD expansion is that it provides us with a few choice morsels buried under a mountain of drudgery and frustration. Rumors of triple immune, multi-shot Lightning Enchanted bosses, nerfed drops, and a lack of many popular unique weapons tend to scare people off. After all, we have limited time and when Runeword Mod offers Spirit and Insight to supercharge your 1.11 Blizzballer through MF runs, there seems to be little reason to slog a sorceress through 1.07. Little reason indeed, except for the fun factor. 1.07 is very rough around the edges. Act bosses don’t drop from treasure classes above their Normal counterparts. Lightning Enchanted monsters sometimes damage you without throwing visible bolts. Two handed weapons don’t deal the listed “+ damage”. Runewords, life leach, and + skills gear do not work on mercenaries. The Hellforge drop is capped at Um. The list goes on. But bear in mind that these crude restrictions are counterbalanced by the occasional +37 max damage Grand Charm, Shimmering Grand Charms with 18% resist all + secondary mods, and crafted items that can provide you with 20% or greater life leech. The real fun starts when your matriarchs and patriarchs beat the game in the low 70s with gear that looks like you couldn’t finish a SPF tournament. I’ve done a bit of rack-running, a bit of 556% MF Hell act boss running, a bit of 374% MF Hell boss monster running, and a whole lot of Lower Kurast, Act 5 and Moo Moo Farm running for crafting and Mat/Pat purposes. Even though my personal project of a 1.07 septemvirate is only a little more than half completed, the following mini-guides are based on observations and the collected wisdom/folly of the D2 forums. So be prepared for information that is a mile wide and six inches deep, rather than the other way around. For those of you wishing to explore the arcane world of 1.07, setting goals is the best way to avoid frustration, especially upon entering Hell difficulty. Ask yourself if you just want to dip a toe in and just rack unique items that outshine their 1.10+ counterparts, socketed items, ethereal weapons for runewords, and some set items that are particularly hard to find. If this is the case, you just want to power a character to Hell Lower Kurast and follow the 1.07 guide to rack running. Do you want to cube some silly +37 mana per kill rings with the bugged Cobalt ring recipe, or see if you can cube/craft set/unique rings and amulets with resists to bring forward? Takes a little bit more work as you’ll want to get to at least level 78 for these purposes, so push on rescue Anya and run Nihilathak’s Temple for experience. Or do you want to Mat/Pat a couple of toons that will likely be useless in later patches? Then strap on and get ready for the ride, you masochist. The following mini-guides are presented in the order that would allow you to accumulate wealth as quickly as possible. Sorceress Barbarian Druid Assassin Necromancer Amazon Paladin Sorceress Skills This is the simplest build, as there are no synergies and Cold Mastery works better in 1.07 than in any other version. To start, simply bash things with a scepter or javelin and let your mercenary do the rest of the work. Put a point into Ice Bolt to start. Save your skill points until Level 6, where Static Field becomes available. Take that to the maximum—there is no cap in 1.07 and you can sliver any monster with it. Frost Nova and Ice Blast are pre-requisites for your endgame skill Frozen Orb, and have their uses. Frost Nova offers you passable crowd control in Normal and Nightmare difficulties with only 1 point, so use this liberally with your fledgling sorceress. Telekinesis is great for stun-locking enemies while your merc gets the kill, and is a prereq for Teleport. Finally, a point in Warmth is well spent. From level 6 through level 29, continue to place skills in the prereqs for Frozen Orb and max out Static Field. At level 30, put a point into Frozen Orb and another into Cold Mastery. The rest of your skill points go towards maxing Frozen Orb and then getting Cold Mastery to 17+ including +skills gear. You can overcommit to Cold Mastery without having any serious problems, as there is little to no reason to try a dual elemental sorceress since th CM breaks immunities. By level 30, you should have found or shopped a relevant orb that provides you with + skills to Blizzard, Frozen Orb, and/or the more generic +cold skills or +skills. Stats Your stats are pretty much yours to decide, though I would recommend going with a Vit/resist rather than Dex/shield build. The shields in 1.07 don't block very well, and finding the Deflecting affix is tedious. Strength should be up to 60-75 in order for you to equip Tower shields w/3 PDiamonds for resists. Everything else should go into Vitality. Mercenary A Might merc or a barbarian in very defensive gear can both work for a sorceress. The Barbarian has better AI in that he keeps the monsters at a safe distance, but can get very costly due to countless resurrections. Gear Your gear should run towards a +3 Cold Skills orb, +3 Cold Skills Amulet, and +3 Cold Skill circlet. If this is your first character, you probably want to keep a 4x4 spot open in your stash, so your armor, boots, gloves, and rings should be geared towards resists. Your switch should be a Sigon’s Guard, Whitsan's Guard, Lidless Wall, or another Tower Shield with PDiamonds and a wand with Lower Resist charges. If you can't find a LR wand, keep shopping. By the time you get to Hell, you should have found an orb with +2 skills or +3 cold skills and some relevant secondary mods. If not, don't worry about it. Hopefully you’ve been able to find enough resist gear and charms to get your Fire and Lightning resists to 75, as the elemental damage in Act 3 and Act 4 is quite dangerous to you (and your merc). FCR isn’t very relevant with Frozen Orb, but certainly helps with Teleport. During NM you can probably quest with a 4 PTopaz armor, as Frozen Orb + Cold Mastery will tear apart every monster you encounter. In Hell, resists are your primary concern. After that, prioritize MF. 374% in Hell gives you a very high chance of set items from uniques and boss monsters, so a couple of armors and helms stuffed with PTopazes on you and your merc will get you most of the way there. You’ll need to get to 556% MF to make act bosses drop uniques, which will take a lot of work and only yeilds drops to TC39. This is a good way to get Twitchthroe, Tarnhelm, and other excellent low-level twinking gear, but you’ll likely find plenty of decent rares and set items before you can amass 556% MF. The real prize here is Raven Claw with can be traded for Pul-Mal or so on the SPTF, as the 1.07 version shoots L33 Explosive Arrows when brought forward to 1.10+ and makes an unbeatable twinking weapon. Socket quests should be saved for armors and shields that have resists and/or +life. Since this character will likely be the MF character you use to farm goodies for other 1.07 character or to bring forward, don’t feel like you are wasting Larzuk’s time by putting holes in dual-affix armor so that you can stuff it full of PTopazes. Shopping for Jeweler's armors of XX isn't a terrible waste of time either, as you can find +3 warcries and +Assassin skill weapons from Anya in Hell as well. Just make sure that you don't kill Nilthi in Hell so you can keep the portal open. Barbarian Skills The Barb is a good second character as his Item Find skill adds a lot to your drops. To start one off, you will likely want to focus on killing speed and survivability. The tried and true Frenzy and Whirlwind builds shine in 1.07. Concentrate and Berserk are also possible, but the slow killing speed of these skills make them less attractive. Once again, grab a scepter or javelin and get to killing. Start working your way down the Warcry and Combat trees with a point in all the pre-requisites through level 12. Stun and Leap will get a point as well. Around level 6 you should be able to tell if you want to go down the Frenzy or WW side of the Combat skills tree, but you can wait as long as A3 before you really need to make a decision--the Flayers require that you start killing pretty quickly. You’ll be tempted to put a point or two into a Weapon Mastery, but hold off unless you have an end-game weapon already stashed. WW barbs are best with pole arms, spears, or range 4 axes, but not that all these weapons are quite slow. A Gothic or Champion Axe may be your best bet if you don't have a 40% IAS weapon ready to socket for your endgame. Frenziers do well with whatever gives them fast Crushing Blow, so Guillame's Face, crafted Blood Gloves with IAS, and fast swords or maces will do nicely. Max Battle Orders, then Frenzy or WW, and pump whatever else you need into War Cry and/or your Weapon Mastery of choice to give you crowd control and the damage you’ll need to get through Hell. One point wonders in the Mastery tree and Berserk make life a lot easier in A4, as your resists will be sorely tested as well as your ability to kill while under IM. Berserk will be used extensively in Hell, but shouldn’t require more than a point and your +skills gear to work just fine. Leap Attack is likely work getting a point into as well, since it doesn’t count as a melee attack for IM purposes. It allows you to jump in and kill Unravelers, nasty boss monsters, Nihilathak, and the like while providing you a great way to get out of these situations as well. It can also save a lot of time in the Kurast Jungle as well as the Sewers under Kurast. Deciding whether to pump War Cry or your Weapon Mastery is up to you, but getting at least 2 seconds of stun out of War Cry will likely be necessary to kill a tougher opponent in Hell before needing to recast. With WW, Weapon Mastery should be pushed farther than with Frenzy. You may want to use War Cry as a one point wonder to give you breathing room between whirls, but it isn't likely needed. Howl is a more cost effective option, but it does scatter your targets. Stats Stats should go into STR until you get to 70 or so, and then to VIT until you hit level 30. Save your stat points after that, as Battle Orders will give you great survivability through mid-NM. Your DEX may need a big boost if you find a great rare spear or sword, so hold off on committing 200+ in STR until you are quite sure. Mercenary A Might merc is the obvious choice for a barb, but you can be well served by a Cold or Fire rogue, as their AI and elemental damage helps out quite a bit when you are faced with PIs and bosses. Gear Your gear should focus around a good +2 Barbarian Skills hat with appropriate secondary skills. Getting one with Find Item or Berserk can save you a few skill points, but you don’t need a much more than 74 skill points to succeed. Your endgame armor will likely be a socketed armor stuffed with resist jewels with secondary mods and/or runes. If you go with Frenzy, swords are generally the best overall choice for damage, durability, range, etc. Axes are fun, but break pretty quickly with only 25 durability on Nagas and Berserker Axes. Maces are an excellent choice, with Knouts and Scourges providing fast damage, but they can lag a bit as many Undead are PI or highly physical resistant in Hell. Your switch should be 2 +3 Warcries weapons. Before you get there, a heavy-duty boss killing weapon is a good idea. Something with crushing blow, lots of poison damage, or –target defense will give you good results when using Concentrate or Berserk against a single target while you level. Mauls and Axes shine here, and can be an endgame option if you don't have the patience to shop for +3 Warcries weapons. Save your last 2 socket quests for your endgame weapon(s)—you’ll likely pick up a Shae rune or two along the way and unless you crafted greater Blood gloves with the rune, some lesser Blood gloves with IAS and decent CB should help you finish the game. Remember that WW doesn’t work with Chance to Cast mods, so be careful about your weapon selection. Additionally, WW only counts on-weapon IAS, so that socket quest with a Shae rune cane mean the difference between 6 fps and 4 fps. Conquering Hell Baal with his dreaded Manaflame (doing up to 2200 magic damage in 1 attack) will require 2500+ life through Battle Orders and +skills gear, along with CB and hopefully some poison/OW/hit slows target goodness as well.