1.09 rushing, LoD or Classic?


Diabloii.Net Member

I am currently planning on making a setup for doing HF rushes in 1.09 for the purpose of collecting the runes in later patches, either 1.10 or 1.13. For that purpose, I currently have several characters still in 1.00 ready to be forwarded into the future. However, I am not quite sure whether I should eventually do the rushes in 1.09 Classic or LoD. Right now I'm leaning more towards making an FO/Nova Sorc in 1.09 LoD, but would it be better to try to have a character in 1.09 Classic instead? What kind of build, gear setup should I be looking for in either case? For the record, I have only played later versions of the game so I am not very familiar with the intricacies of building characters in older patches.


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iirc, 1.09 LoD does not have the level requirements for Ancients; which is the major blocking point for current patches.

1.09 LoD still has the 'better' quality items that classic does not have, so disregarding other possible caveats, I'd stick to 1.09 LoD.


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I'd go with LoD on merit of gear quality. The exceptional/elite sets/uniques don't exist in Classic, so you're going to be stuck with 1.09 rares, which is not a good position to be in. The improved uniques in 1.09 open up some really powerful gear combinations, like Shaftshop/Harlequin Crest/Stormshield, which, combined with Energy Shield, makes a Sorceress nigh-invincible to physical damage.

Gear-wise, I'd aim for the following:
Helm: Harlequin Crest
Armor: Shaftstop
Shield: Stormshield
Weapon: Oculus (preferably on 1.09d so the CTC Teleport never fires)
Gloves: Magefist/Frostburn, depending on mana vs. FCR
Boots*/Belt/Jewelery: Whichever, really - SoJ, Raven Frost, +mana, etc.

* Note that Aldur's Advance is missing the +50% Fire Resist in 1.09, so don't get too excited by it.

On SC, this isn't all required; you could probably make do with e.g. Vipermagi+Rhyme. Drops in 1.09 are poor compared to 1.13, so you'll be spending a lot of time in the (tiny) Durance. The main problem with rushing is Duriel, who hits like a truck and still Charges in 1.09, so you need a lot of life/DR% to really get through on Hell.

You'll probably find this thread by @Me2NiK useful: https://www.diabloii.net/forums/threads/the-lazy-guardian-99er-a-story.967065/


Diabloii.Net Member
LoD all the way, gotta love charms, runes, and jewels....but I'd recommend doing this in 1.07, actually... There are NO blocking quests in 1.07, a lvl1 toon can take a portal to WSK without ever even setting foot on the Summit, much less defeating the Ancients. Speaking of Ancients, the lvl requirements for them were added in 1.08:
From the 1.08 patch notes:
- Cannot get quest completion credit for the ancients' quest unless the character level is 20 or greater in normal
  difficulty mode, 40 or greater in nightmare, and 60 or greater in hell difficulty mode.
Another advantage of doing this in 1.07 is that you will then have a character who can rack for 1.07 ethereal bases and hunt for 1.07 resistance and damage charms.

If you do go with 1.07, its probably better to go with Static Field/FO sorc...Static is mighty in 1.07, able to sliver anything not LI, while Nova got buffed by about 20% in 1.08, so its weaker in 1.07. Cold Mastery breaks immunity in 1.07, so FO can kill anything, and makes a great finisher for anything slivered by Static. For gear, in addition to the usual, look for MDR, which is very strong in 1.07, and necessary to avoid insta-death from MSLE bosses



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I've got quite a bit to say about this as I'm now using my 1.09 sorc for this purpose. My thoughts are mostly disorganized - apologies in advance!

If you go with 1.09...

I wouldn't even consider classic. Classic is very messy on 1.09, especially because of the nerfed rares. You'll be grinding for months.

RE: Build, sorcs actually have a lot of good options. You're going to want frozen orb because it's simply the best boss killer for everything except Duriel, who is immune to cold, and you only need to max FO then put one into CM to get good damage out of it (note: CM works very strangely in 1.09 and isn't worth a ton of points). Frozen orb takes a bit of finesse to use so if you're just starting out and you're thinking "I was lied to this skill sucks", then chances are you're not quite using it correctly. For large enemies, you want the ball to explode directly on them; you'll know you did max damage if you can't see any ice bolts.

Popular secondary skill choices are nova, firewall and meteor. Nova is the best choice of these three for cows (by far the fastest place to level in 1.09 - indeed, 1.09 cows is the fastest place to level in any version of the game) but is arguably the least useful for rushing since it's way too expensive to use on any act bosses. It just barely gets the job done on Duriel, even with a lot of extra skill points. Firewall and meteor both do tonnes of damage (and may actually kill faster than FO for some bosses) but are significantly less good than nova against cows.

In 1.09, a lot of skills that are one point wonders in future patches are worth hard skill points. You should try to find some room in your build for static, because it's going to get a ton of mileage. Note that static is bugged in hell on high player counts, such that you can static Duriel and Meph down to low percents on hell. Also, because you can't buy mana pots in 1.09, unless you have some other good mana solution (like a mpk ring from 1.07), you might want to put hard points into teleport or else you're going to be spending some time farming mana potions in between rushes. Warmth is similarly worth a couple of extra points. Energy shield is worth at least one point; you'll probably decide you need it for hell duriel although it's generally too buggy to be used on a full-time basis. Thunderstorm is also strangely useful if you pick nova as your secondary skill. The reason for this is that TS will do so much damage that it will probably kill whatever it hits, and if you're wearing a ton of mpk (which you should) that means you will get periodic mana boosts while teleporting without having to do anything.

An ideal FO/nova build would look something like this:
[1 into prereqs, totaling 8 skill points]
20 nova
20 thunderstorm
20 lightning mastery
10+ static field
1 telekinesis
1+ teleport
1 energy shield
1 warmth
1 frozen armor
20 frozen orb
1 cold mastery

My 99er has static pretty close to maxed with only a couple of hard points into teleport, but if I didn't plan to go all the way to 99 I'd probably have shifted the balance more evenly.

Regarding gear, it really depends on whether you intend to play hardcore or softcore. 1.09 hardcore necessitates you be prepared at all times to deal with a handful of scenarios that are nearly guaranteed to result in death if you're not prepared for them (I'll elaborate on this below), whereas on softcore you can obviously just take the death and gear yourself differently.

Here's what I would target for a hardcore rusher:

Helm: Shako. A circlet with fcr makes for a good backup option.
Amulet: Mara's, Tal's, good rare/craft. Anything with +2 skills and other good gap-filling stats.
Weapon: Occy but make sure you're playing on 1.09d so the CtC teleport doesn't work. If you must, for whatever reason, play on 1.09b, you're probably going to have to spend a lot of time farming for a good rare here and it's still going to be considerably worse than occy.
Shield: You're going to want to have access to both lidless wall and SS ideally. You don't need SS most of the time (regular monsters do considerably less physical damage in 1.09 than they do in 1.10+), but you'll want it for Duriel and a handful of other areas. Lidless is the best all-purpose sorc shield because of the skills, mpk, fcr and boost to mana.
Armor: Vmagi and valor make for good choices overall, just make sure your resists are adequate if you use valor. It's good to have access to shaftstop for hell Duriel, but it's not super necessary if you have SS.
Gloves: Trang's or magefist can be used once you've solved the mana problem, but until then you'll probably be so dependent on frostburn's giant boost that you can't actually wear anything else.
Rings: Save yourself a ton of hassle and get a mpk ring from 1.07. Raven and the skill rings are also good to have, and I tend to rotate them out depending on what I'm doing.
Belt: Tgod's is the only choice on hardcore because of the large stat boosts and the lightning absorb, which is critical. Seriously, don't even bother trying to rush until you get Tgod's.
Boots: Trav's if you want some extra credit MF while you're rushing; otherwise the best item to put here is almost invariably going to be some rare.

Good gear targets:
Health: As much as you can manage; I wouldn't do hell duriel without at least 900 because under that there's a real risk that he just takes you out in one hit
Mana: 400+ is ideal; anything over 500 is probably overkill
Resists: 50+ across the board is sufficient, although you might want more cold res
Skills: This really depends on how many characters you want to rush at once and/or if you're going to cheese bosses by spawning them in with less players in the game. You can play p1 comfortably with less than +10 skills, but on p8 you're going to have a lot of trouble (especially in act 4) without at least +10
FCR: I go for the 63 bp because you generally have to trade off something big (like shako) to get 105. I don't have an mpk/fcr ring, though, and if I did I'd probably be able to do 105 on a regular setup
DR%: The cap on 1.09 is 75, but you don't need 75 as a rusher. Realistically, you could rush pretty safely with no DR but I'd definitely try to get at least the 10 from shako

Regarding 1.09 vs. 107:

1.09 has the level requirements for ancients but does not have the quest prerequisites added in 1.10, meaning you don't need to do ancients to rush characters you're not planning on leveling so long as you have the WSK waypoint.

Having said that, there are some other pros and cons to doing this on 1.09 versus 1.07.

The main con to 1.09 is that it'll take you quite a bit of time to get set up. This isn't such a big deal on softcore as you'll only need the basics - indeed, if you're planning on playing softcore, I'd say don't sweat the details and just jump in. On hardcore, however, you're going to want a) an answer to MSLE, b) a reliable way to kill Duriel, and c) enough kill power to beat the other act bosses with another character in the game.

The only answer for MSLE that I think is suitable for playing on hardcore in the long-term is tgod's. This is because tgod's also happens to be basically the best belt pre-1.10 in general, whereas the only other option for lightning absorb, blackhorn's face, is a very shitty helm, meaning it occupies a slot you'd really rather use in a better way. You can counteract MSLE without lightning absorb using high amounts of integer MDR, but it's hard to know exactly how much you're going to need in a given circumstance. Consequently, it's generally advisable just to run both. The problem with this is that tgod's isn't an easy drop to get, and it probably means running hell meph for... awhile. This brings me to my next point.

Duriel is a big problem on older patches. This has implications both for the actual rushing process (i.e. how is the character doing the rushing going to kill Duriel?) and for getting a character situated to do rushes in the first place. Duriel is easier on 1.09 than 1.07, but he's still a big problem. An untwinked hardcore sorceress definitely won't be able to reliably kill hell Duriel (and may even have trouble on nightmare duriel). Consequently, you're probably going to have to grind for awhile on nightmare to get past hell Duriel - the easiest way to do this is probably to roll a barbarian or something, but either way it's a lot of work.

Finally, since +skills is basically the only way to boost your damage, you're going to need to spend some time farming to get good enough gear to clear the game with any speed. Farming in 1.09 is pretty tedious because of the lessened effect of MFing and the nerfed racks compared to 1.07, so you'll almost certainly have an easier time getting situated on 1.07.

The other big con to 1.09 is that it doesn't have the huge variety of weird stuff that 1.07 does. The only useful item exclusively obtainable in 1.09 is the bugged raven claw, and you'll be swimming in those pretty quickly if you play on 1.09 for any significant amount of time.

The biggest upside to 1.09 is that it's a much more entertaining patch to play (imo obviously) than 1.07 because it's far more balanced and much more of the game actually works as intended. Consequently, I'd say the big reason to do 1.09 would be if you wanted to actually play the patch beyond the bare minimum, because it's really quite fun.


Diabloii.Net Member
The other big con to 1.09 is that it doesn't have the huge variety of weird stuff that 1.07 does. The only useful item exclusively obtainable in 1.09 is the bugged raven claw
Ehh, minor nitpick, but bugged Raven Claw is obtainable in 1.07/1.08 as well...the thing I always think of being exclusively 1.09 is 5%FRW on Small Charms, well worth farming IMO!!


Diabloii.Net Member
Ehh, minor nitpick, but bugged Raven Claw is obtainable in 1.07/1.08 as well...the thing I always think of being exclusively 1.09 is 5%FRW on Small Charms, well worth farming IMO!!
Oh fair enough, I figured this was the case but didn't want to say it without testing it myself. I should've also mentioned the charms - I've never cared about them personally but others might.