Latest Diablo 3 News
Support the site! Become a Diablo: IncGamers PAL - Remove ads and more!

A Christmas gift to you - an old v1.09 Tale

Discussion in 'Single Player Forum' started by jiansonz, Dec 6, 2017.

  1. jiansonz

    jiansonz Diabloii.Net Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2003
    Messages:
    7,940
    Likes Received:
    836
    Trophy Points:
    323
    Introduction

    ”But I am telling you, she's got talent!” Shandor started to get upset. ”Something's stopping her.”

    ”Yes, laziness and lack of discipline”, Gurst blurted out. ”Have you seen her during lessons? She fails with everything we try to teach her!”

    ”Indeed...”, Lyssa added ”...but from what I can see, not due to lack of commitment. She's really trying. She's also an inspiration for and very supportive of her classmates. I agree with Shandor, we're missing something. I think she has potential to master all our three elements.”

    ”When has she ever shown this 'talent'? Just asking.”, Gurst continued.

    ”Oh, most of it happened before you arrived.”, said Shandor. ”I think she was eight when her friend Alina fell backwards in the shower and Dina saved her by instantly freezing the water. It took Herman half an hour to carefully chop her out of the ice and me more than than to thaw her up, but at least Alina didn't have to suffer hitting her head on the floor.”

    Lyssa continued: ”Or that time two years later, when there was a fire in the dormitory. The other girls said that Dina blew open the blocked door with huge fireballs. And don't forget the bathing incident by the lake three years ago. Mirri jumped from a tree just when Dina had spotted a large shark in the water. She conjured a huge electric shock that paralyzed all the creatures in the water. The whole water was sparking, but Dina managed to stop it before Mirri hit the surface. Not even I can do something like that!”

    ”What those situations seem to have in common is some immediate danger and that she doesn't use conventional spells but rather pure intuition about the elements.” Gurst was trying to see the logic in the events.

    ”Not really true about the danger part. She has sometimes succeded in calmer situations. I've heard about amazing light shows in the dormitory”, Shandor said.



    Nobody knew where Dina came from, least of all herself. Shandor said they had found her on the stairs to the Academy when she was about five years old. Her raven black hair suggested she came from the South, but noone could know for sure.

    She was cared for in the best of ways by the mages, and became liked by just about everyone at the Academy. But she could not learn the simplest of spells. She often said that everything felt right, that she could feel the energy flowing and the few times when she did succeed using some magic, she didn't think it felt differently than during the lessons.

    Most apprentices left the Academy at the age of 17-18 years. Dina was now 20 years old and unsure about the future.

    Spunky and curious in nature, she was now eavesdropping on the three archmages through an open window.


    ”Dormitory, shower, lake, dormitory again. Always fails during lessons.” Gurst was trying to analyze the situation. ”Nothing to do with indoors-outdoors. Nor with audience and stage fright.”

    ”Nudity!”, Lyssa blurted out. ”Or, lack of clothes, if you want to put it that way. Wait here.”

    Dina did a double take. Could this really be true?! But right now she had more urgent matters to deal with. Better get back to her room post haste, or it could get complicated trying to explain what she was doing outside this late in the evening. She just made it back before there was a knock on the door.

    ”Enter. Ah, Archmage Lyssa, to what do I owe the honour?”
    ”Come with me to my chamber. Now.”


    When they got there, Lyssa said: ”Take off your clothes.”
    ”But...?”
    ”Yes. You can use my screen there in the corner if you're shy.”

    Lyssa threw a light bulb to Dina. ”Light this!”

    Dina had tried this many times, each time with a negative result. She held the light bulb and focused. The bulb lit up but just as quickly, went dark again. Dina examined it. The filament had burned apart. ”Oops!”

    ”Here, try another. But don't try as hard this time!”

    Dina got a new light bulb. This time she managed to light it and keep it lit. Fascinated, she stared at it.

    Lyssa was excited now. ”Dina, can you light the fire in my fireplace? But please, take it slow.”

    The firewood lit up with a furious roar, then the fire calmed down to normal.

    ”OK, another test. I will now pour some water from this glass. I want you to freeze the jet of water, but take it easy. I don't want any frost damage on my hand.”

    Dina managed perfectly, for a short moment. Then her concentration failed and the water fell to the floor.

    ”We've found my problem!”
    ”Yes, but not the magnitude of it. Here, put on my little Ring of Light and try the light bulb again.” Dina did as she was told but could not for the life of her light the bulb.


    A few tests later, Lyssa returned to Shandor and Gurst. She solemnly declared: ”We've solved Dina's riddle. We at the Academy now have the most talented student we've ever seen.”


    The following months became hectic for Dina. After four months she was ready for her exam, something that normally took at least ten years. She was of course helped by already knowing almost all of the theory.


    Come exam day, Dina sought out Shandor. It was obvious she was worried.
    ”How am I supposed to achieve anything with magic in the outside world if I am naked? I'll draw far too much attention wherever I am.”

    Shandor had already anticipated this. ”No problem. Mireille, our best illusionist, is waiting for you. Go to her.”


    Dina had always liked pretty things, including good looking clothes. So had Mireille, as it turned out. They hit off well. After some joyful talk, Mireille became more serious:

    ”The illusion I'll cast on you will have two limitations. One: it only works on humans. To all demons, animals, etc., you will look naked. Two: you can only pick one outfit, then you're stuck with that illusion until I undo it, change it, or if any of us should die.
    Look through my closet, I think we are about the same size.”
    ”I brought some of my own clothes, too...”
    ”Good. Take your pick.”

    Dina chose a green top with long sleeves, with a matching loincloth. Outside the loincloth a black wrapover skirt with golden lining. She added wide orange arm protectors and leg warmers. Finally some rustic brown boots and an orange diadem.

    ”OK, now stand still for a minute while I focus. There! Now take off your clothes and stand in front of the mirror.”
    ”That turned out well.” Dina was more than pleased.
    ”Only problem is you'll still draw attention, not to mention unwanted suitors. But I suppose you won't have any trouble giving them 'the cold shoulder', hehe.”


    The time had come. The whole Academy had gathered. Shandor spoke:

    ”We have gathered here today to say goodbye to Dina. We will all miss her.
    Great things await her. Dina has decided to go east, towards the area around Tristram.
    Rumor has it that a lot of trouble has stirred there as of late. We wouldn't normally send an apprentice on a mission this dangerous, but Dina is special, as you now all know.”

    Lyssa added: ”It's a tradition than an apprentice making their way into the outer world change their name, as a way to mark their goodbye to Academy life. Dina and I have have come up with a very fitting name for her. What will we know you as from now on, Dina?”

    ”Nudina.”

    There was laughter and cheers all over.




    -------------------------------


    [2017 note: In the summer of 2002, I started to play a character in v1.09. I took lots of screenshots and wrote a story. It took the form of a couple of .html pages that I burned to CDs and gave my brother and my cousin as christmas present that year.

    For a long time, I've wanted to share that story here, but the workload involved has always been putting me off. You see, the whole story and most of the added text in the screenies is written in my native language (Swedish) and translating it takes quite a long time. It's also much harder than writing my usual character reports, because in those I pick words and expressions that I think I can handle. Now I have to look up several words and expressions for every section I translate.

    Two things have contributed to the fact that I am now finally giving it a go, more than 15 years later:
    * That you can upload to and paste whole screenshots in the forum.
    * My decision of not editing the screenies any more, but instead just add translations under those that are in Swedish.

    After this week, I will have two weeks off from work, so hopefully I can get the bulk of the thing done during those weeks. I am not putting any pressure on myself, though. It will get done eventually, even if it takes well past christmas...

    Next post will lay down the rules etc. of the challenge. Then the in-game story will begin. It will be more hands-on gaming related stuff, but it's still more story in it than in my usual tournamnet reports]
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2017
  2. Kitteh

    Kitteh Diabloii.Net Site Pal

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2011
    Messages:
    11,726
    Likes Received:
    2,187
    Trophy Points:
    534
    Very nice jiansonz! I look forward to this :D
     
  3. jiansonz

    jiansonz Diabloii.Net Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2003
    Messages:
    7,940
    Likes Received:
    836
    Trophy Points:
    323
    So, this tale is about a v1.09 naked HC Sorceress.

    Heavily inspired by the adventures of a character called NakedBabe, although NakedBabe was played in an earlier version of Classic (probably v1.03) and she was played on the realms. So the amount of players in her games varied. At one time, there was a known Player Killer that entered the game NakedBabe was in, but thankfully, they never met. NakedBabe made it past Normal, but eventually died in one of the Act I caves in Nightmare, killed by a Cold Enchanted + Extra Fast pack of rogues.


    Nudina was created quite early in my D2 "career". To get an idea of where in the D2 experience I was, here is a summary of my characters up to that point:

    Classic v1.03
    - My very first character was a Bowazon. Quite heavy on the passive skills, and about 6 points in Multishot. Her first death was against Fangskin. The 2nd was to Duriel. And the next about 20 more deaths were also to Duiriel. Then she actually didn't die until it was time for Diablo. He killed her 5-6 times. My Amazon completed Normal at clvl 24, and then got retired. "What is the point of playing the whole thing again with the same character?", I thought. :rolleyes:

    - Second character was a very weird (if you look at it today) Sorceress. Her main way of fighting was to freeze enemies with ~level 5 Ice Blast, then hack away with a weapon. I remember she used a rare Poignard she found in Act II Nightmare that I (at the time) thought was amazing. I wish I could have taken a look at that dagger today, but the character file is sadly lost.
    As you may well have guessed, this character became very slow to play as monster life went up. I gave up with her in Act III Nightmare. Never actually reached Lower Kurast, IIRC.

    Expansion v1.09
    Here is where my main pre-Nudina D2 experience comes from. I made four Pats/Mats, starting with the two classes I was already familiar with. By now, I had read some character guides and whatnot.

    - Frozen Orb + Fire Wall Sorceress
    - Javazon (Plague Javelin + Lightning Fury)
    - Bone Spear Necromancer with maxed CE and a tough golem (lvl 16 GM)
    - Phoenix Strike Assassin

    I've always preferred the Diablo 1 Single Player way - when you load a saved game, everything is exactly like when you saved (well, with one exception, vendor inventories get rerolled). Dead monsters are still dead (actually, even their corpses are still there!) and every item is right where you left it. I like that there is a limit to the wealth and XP. I dislike the D2 way with respawning monsters, so I've always done my best to mimic the D1 way. Hence I stick with single-pass play. All those four characters above completed Hell at clvl 73. (Up to this point, I didn't even know there was a way to simulate more players in the game.)

    Nudina was my first HC character. I thought it would be good practice for HC (both for playing skills and the mindset) to play a character that had to be careful in order to get somewhere. Still, it wasn't easy to get used to...

    Looking back at the 'before-I-start' part of the written story, it's obvious that I at that stage did know about the players setting, but I decided to leave it at 1.

    The Expansion introduced the thing with equippable mercenaries (that could also travel between acts), but I decided to not give Nudina's mercs any gear. She also couldn't hire (or resurrect) them for normal play, but she was allowed to keep the ones given to her as rewards, and to hire/resurrect them for a few (dangerous) parts of the game, like Duriel, Ruined Temple, Ancients, etc.

    The only items Nudina was allowed to use were scrolls, tomes, keys and potions (the five non-weapon kinds).

    Full clears was the norm, but she was certainly allowed to take areas in the "wrong" order. Also, she was allowed to temporarily park bosses, as long as she made a serious attempt to kill them later in that game.

    Nudina has one more little perk: since she likes pretty things, she collects diamonds. She was required to always have her biggest non-perfect diamond with her, in case she would find a gem shrine.


    v1.09 peculiarities
    This section is for those who have forgotten, and for those who have never even seen v1.09.
    A ton of the differences are related to items, but most of those are not an issue for the character in this story. :D

    - Vendors didn't sell mana potions. With the low players 1 drop rates (especially from containers), this is a big thing for a young Sorceress. It probably wasn't actually needed back then either, but the dominating mindset among players was that you pretty much needed some Warmth and some investment in Energy.

    - Skills didn't have any synergies, but the Sorceress Masteries and (I think) the Druid summons still worked as they do now.

    - Monster amounts of life in NM and especially Hell were way lower than they are today. A good illustration to this is the PS Assassin I mentioned. She had invested 15 points in Phoenix Strike when she found Tiamat's Rebuke late in Nightmare. She never used Phoenix Strike again. The large amounts of elemental damage on that shield meant that it was much easier to not bother with charges and just use Attack on everything...

    - The two SuperUniques with Aura Enchanted (Hephasto and Bremm Sparkfist) didn't have a random aura, it was always Conviction. Also, counterintuitive to his name, Sparkfist wasn't Lightning Enchanted, he was Cold Enchanted.

    - The LCS (Lying Character Screen) lied even more than it does in later versions. More on that later...

    - Holy Fire and Holy Freeze didn't add any elemental damage to attacks. Holy Freeze had no pulse damage either, was just the slowing. Holy Fire was just the weak AoE-pulses.

    - Thawing/Antidote potions did not temporarily improve resists. Stamina potions only filled the stamina bar, they didn't give any temporary Stamina Shrine effect.

    - Council members could heal themselves. (From v1.10 and onwards, they can only heal others, so if you can fight one alone, the healing is stopped (they sometimes try to cast it on their Hydras, which is of course just a waste of time.))

    (I may have forgotten a few important things - hopefully the'll come back to me when I read the story)
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2017
    Kitteh, pharphis and T72on1 like this.
  4. Pyrotechnician

    Pyrotechnician Diabloii.Net Site Pal

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2011
    Messages:
    7,245
    Likes Received:
    237
    Trophy Points:
    183
    The good old days of 1.09. They were the days when I started my D2 career. There were a lot of "features" and a lot of "bugs" that I both enjoyed and despised, but mostly enjoyed. I look forward to reading more.
     
    DiabloTwoinDC likes this.
  5. NamelessPenguin

    NamelessPenguin Diabloii.Net Member

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2017
    Messages:
    432
    Likes Received:
    220
    Trophy Points:
    165
    Brilliant! :D
     
  6. krischan

    krischan Europe Trade Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2003
    Messages:
    30,242
    Likes Received:
    1,169
    Trophy Points:
    416
    I like to read that kind of stuff. Nice!

    BTW, you forgot to mention MSLE.

    My first classic character was a barbarian. Warcries? Sounds silly. Are we in a Wagner opera or what?

    For him, the matter of dying was the other way around. I don't remember any severe problems versus Duriel, but he died a dozen times versus Diablo. Later on, he got stuck in the Arcane Sanctum in hell. His gemmed waraxe wasn't good enough against the ghosts and frenzy didn't work well with no mana.
     
  7. jiansonz

    jiansonz Diabloii.Net Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2003
    Messages:
    7,940
    Likes Received:
    836
    Trophy Points:
    323
    I chose to not mention it because it's not an issue in the early game. On the higher difficulties, there were also other enemies (Baal, Nihlathak(!) ) that were a lot more deadly than they are now.


    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    <2017 note: I've decided to do very little polishing of my old texts, so I apologize in advance for
    - cliché expressions
    - cliché happenings in the game
    - "No kidding, Captain Obvious" moments/stuff (for you veterans.)

    Keep in mind that the text was written for two people that pretty much only had played through Classic in Normal (maybe a little more), and just tasted a bit of the expansion. You go back to things you wrote 15 years ago and see if there aren't any major facepalm things there...>


    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------



    I realized that this challenge would be difficult and require a lot of caution and meticulous planning of skills and stats. On the other hand, I thought there was a good chance to at least make to Act II and make some decent progress there. The early monsters are so wimpy that it's quite OK to run around with less than 70 life...
    I realized that if Nudina made it to Level 18 she would most likely get to at least fight Duriel. However, a continuation into Act III was very hypothetical.

    It was obvious that there would be no point at all spending points in STR and DEX, so it was to be a split between ENE and VIT. I also realized that without extra walk/run speed, Nudina would need cold spells (to slow down the enemies) in order to not be far too slow compared to some enemies. So the focus would be Cold with a couple of key spells in Lightning and Fire.

    ACT I

    The game was on. Nudina, of course, had to sell her starting staff. What a scrooge that witch Akara is, the staff is worth much more than that. If you were to find an equivalent staff, she would give a few hundred gold for it!

    01,Startpåken.jpg

    Nudina entered Blood Moor with the following equipment:
    4 Minor Healing Potions, 1 Scroll of Town Portal, 1 Scroll of Identify and 1 Gold.

    Since she sold the staff, she had only access to two skills: Attack and Throw. Throw was out because it requires throwing weapons or potions. That leaves Attack. With fists of steel, Nudina threw himself over the enemies and landed mighty blows on their undead jaws:

    02,Slår på zombie.jpg

    When Blood Moor was cleared, Nudina had reached level 3:

    03, nyss level 3.jpg
    "Watch out Baal, I'm on a roll!"

    Now she got her first offensive spell: Ice Bolt. It deals 3-5 damage for 3 mana. In addition, she had Frozen Armor, a staple for a Sorceress involved in fisticuffs with critters that hit a lot harder than she does (which is just about eveything except Quill Rats). Frozen Armor freezes the enemies that hit her for a few seconds. Additionally, Nudina's Defense increases from 6 to 7. Yay...
    A good tactic was to shoot an Ice Bolt to slow down the enemy and then use the fists (to save mana):

    04,Beast-slagsmål.jpg
    "Wipe off that smile, you big lug. You're actually a lot more hurt than what I am!"

    Den of Evil offered no major difficulties and Nudina continued on to Cold Plains where it would be significantly worse. Good old Bishibosh reared his ugly head (and, of course, came with a dozen of his closest friends):

    05, Bishibosh et al.jpg

    Check out the Ice Bolt that is going very much in the wrong direction. Try to aim yourself when you must duck the opponents' artillery and press Print Scrn to take a screenshot while at the same time the infantry is incoming!
    (Also note that one of the four potions in the belt is a Stamina Potion. Nudina quickly learned that it was very easy to get tired and it is definitely not good to be forced to walk in a tough fight. Eventually, Nudina will have a lot of Vitality and thus also a lot of Stamina, but now, at the beginning, her Stamina is very low. With a drink in the belt, she can at least run twice as far...)

    Nudina managed to somehow lure Bish from the rest of the shamans. Here she's bombing him in the back (but once again, there is an Ice Bolt heading God knows where):

    06, Bish i ryggen.jpg

    Nudina was pleased with two things in this situation:
    * That she had not decided on Firebolt for the beginning.
    * That Magic Resistance does not mean resist all 75% like it did in Classic D2, but only 40%.

    Each Ice Bolt actually did noticeable damage and Bishibosh eventually exploded (at a safe distance from Nudina's naked and oh so fragile body...).

    07, Bish död.jpg

    If you listen carefully to Shamans (Fallen, Carver, etc.), they sometimes shout "Bishibosh!" Similarly, Fallen and Carver shout "Rakanishu!" - a homage to their hero, the Carver boss who guards the Cairn Stones.

    <2017 note: Looks like I didn't yet know about "Colenzo!". BTW, it's pretty cool that the shamans shouted his name even before he was in the game...>

    It went quite smoothly in The Cave. Skeletons are weak but it was a bit careless to face 9 of them at once:

    08, Benrangelgäng.jpg

    Immediately afterwards, Nudina ran into the enemy who would prove to be the hardest to kill in the whole of Act I:

    09, Coldcrow.jpg

    Cold Enchanted means Resist Cold 75%. Thus, Nudina's Ice Bolt do only 0.25 * (3-5), i.e. about 1 damage per shot. I thought it might be better to use fists (they do 1-2 damage, i.e. 1.5 on average). But that was not a good idea at all. Coldcrow did not want to stand still when Nudina was close and Nudina would then be hit by ALL the arrows Coldcrow shot at her (and those cold arrows HURT). Better to duck-shoot-duck-shoot and be patient. Akara may be a scrooge, but she did not mind filling up Nudina's mana every half-minute or so for a while.

    Nudina reached level 6 somewhere in The Cave and here you can see when I've placed her very first points in Vitality:

    10, nyss level 6.jpg

    Since I had saved a skill point from level 5, I could now give Nudina two new skills:

    * Ice Blast, which is the "big brother" of Ice Bolt. It does 10 damage for 6 mana and freezes the enemy for quite a while.

    * Frost Nova, which chills (i.e. reduces the speed) all enemies within a certain radius for 8 seconds and also injures them 2-4, for 9 mana.
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2017
    Kitteh and pharphis like this.
  8. Maltatai

    Maltatai Diabloii.Net Member

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2010
    Messages:
    658
    Likes Received:
    644
    Trophy Points:
    233
    Long live Nudina!

    "Flina lagom, din stora luns!"
    :D
    Diablo II på svenska, bättre kan det inte bli!*
    *Diablo II in Swedish, couldn't be better!

    Is there any chance that you could post or share the story in Swedish? I would so love to read that.
     
  9. jiansonz

    jiansonz Diabloii.Net Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2003
    Messages:
    7,940
    Likes Received:
    836
    Trophy Points:
    323
    @Maltatai: check your conversations.


    --------------------------------------------------------------------



    With her new skills, Nudina took on Blood Raven. I forgot to take a screenshot from that battle (I'm new to this, OK!). Nudina had to drink several potions during the battle, which became messy. But it ended as planned:

    11, Blood Raven besegrad.jpg

    Nudina received as reward a mercenary, Elly. Elly was level 4 and used a bow that did 1-4 damage and mixed up the regular arrow shots with Inner Sight (lights up the enemies (clearly useful) and makes them easier to hit) and Cold Arrow. Nudina decided to shelf the ”boxing gloves” for good and tie Ice Blast to the left mouse button. For the first time, she felt like a real Sorceress! Main way of fightning now went like this: Nudina casts Frost Nova, Elly shoots down the chillled enemies, Nudina helps with Ice Blast when needed.
    It worked pretty well, but it was slow and cost quite a bit of mana. You can't imagine just how tempting this pack of javelins was:

    12, frestande javelin.jpg

    Increased attack speed, extra damage and extra to hit vs. undead (which is all there is in Crypt and Mausoleum) and topped by 1-8 lightning damage! The enemies would have dropped like flies in close combat and even faster if using Throw.

    But given Nudina's situation, weapon use was out, of course.


    Out in Stony Field, Nudina and Elly found a mysterious book:

    13, Lame story.jpg

    Things went well in Underground Passage and Dark Wood, until Treehead WoodFist appeared. Nudina had found a Skill Shrine, which meant that Ice Blast was now level 3 and did around 24 damage. Elly looks pretty off in this picture, she seems more interested in the stone wall:

    14, Treehead.jpg

    Treehead is Extra Fast, but luckily he is not so fast when he is Ice Blasted, and he eventually bit the dust. With him out of the way, Nudina could grab the Scroll of Inifuss and, with Akara's help, finally open the portal to Tristram in Stony Field:

    15, Shes gonna blow.jpg

    Tristram is packed with bosses and champions, including Griswold. Again, I forgot to document the fights. Against Griswold, Nudina used a new weapon: Static Field. It damages 25% of the enemies' current life. In other words, Static Field does more damage the more life they have. The problem is that the range is very short on level 1. You have to stand right next to the enemy to use it. This makes it dangerous to use if the enemy is strong in melee. Against Griswold, Nudina used a combo of Frost Nova and Static Field and ended with a number of Ice Blasts. After some more battles, Deckard Cain was rescued.

    Eventually, Nudina and Elly reached Black Marsh where they discovered the tower ruins they read about in the book earlier:

    16, Tower, vågar vi.jpg
    "Do we dare?"

    The Forgotten Tower is a tough place. Archers, tough goatmen and Ghosts. Bosspacks on several floors. And crowded. The first two floors were quite calm. Ghosts are much worse for melee characters, because they are resistant to physical damage and dangerous in close combat because they stack on top of each other. At level 3, Nudina and Elly met a Cursed archer bosspack:

    17, Tower, cursed.jpg

    Let's make it clear that it's NOT good to be Cursed against an archer bosspack when you have about 60 life! But we made it. Here's a picture just when the boss falls:

    18, Tower, Archer-boss.jpg

    As you can see, Nudina's mana was almost empty and Elly got hurt. That was quite tough.

    On the bottom floor, Nudina made a horrible discovery:

    19, Blodet, yuck.jpg
    "This must be the blood the tome spoke about. Yuck, that's gross!"

    Unfortunately, I failed to take a picture again, this time of The Countess. You'll have to make do with a screenie of some of her minions. The "gleaming" is because of Elly's Inner Sight:

    20, Countess minions.jpg



    <2017 note: As I look back on this now, it's clear to me that, at this stage of the game, having a "naked" mercenary has an even bigger impact on the progress speed (and danger) than having a naked character.>
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2017
    pharphis likes this.
  10. jiansonz

    jiansonz Diabloii.Net Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2003
    Messages:
    7,940
    Likes Received:
    836
    Trophy Points:
    323
    Back in Rogue Encampment, Charsi the smith had a job for us:

    21, Equipment.jpg

    Given that Nudina isn't using any traditional equipment, she could only imagine what kind of ”equipment” Charsi was referring to. It seemed a bit kinky for her. And hadn't Charsi from time to time thrown hungry looks at Nudina? Best to give her the hammer and then stay away...

    Back in the wilderness, Nudina wanted to try out a new spell she had learned, Inferno:

    22, Inferno-test.jpg
    "Check out this wall! The pattern, the colour, the moss...it's so beautiful (sigh!)"
    "Look what I can do. And without liquor!"
    "Talk about Dragon Breath. Care for a Tic Tac?"

    Inferno was really only needed as a prerequisite for Blaze and later Fire Wall. Inferno requires standing still and burning. Standing still is usually not a good idea for Nudina. Inferno also eats a lot of mana if you burn for a long time.

    Down in The Hole, Nudina found an Armor Shrine and wanted to test if it had any significant effect:

    23, Armor Shrine.jpg

    Not bad. Her Defense increased from 7 to 137, i.e. about 1850%!

    Down in The Pit, Nudina shows a good tactic: Meet the enemies at a bottleneck:

    24, Taktik.jpg

    As you can see, it is very close to a level-up. Nudina is now level 11 and has saved a skill point. When the boss in the above group was defeated, level 12 was a fact:

    25, Boss död, level 12.jpg

    Two new skills for the collection:

    * Shiver Armor: Does not require the enemy to hit, just that they attack from a close distance. Then they get chilled for four seconds and take some damage.

    * Blaze, which sets the ground on fire for a few seconds. A very good tactical tool. Nudina often runs away from the enemies and then it's not wrong if she can hurt them at the same time. You can add several layers of Blaze on top of each other. For example, if you're running away, then back and then away again in the same footsteps, the Blaze fire becomes triple on that stretch. A Blaze costs 11 mana and hurts 18-37 per second. Nudina tested Blaze on six Dark Stalkers. She managed to kill all six with a single Blaze:

    26, Blaze-offer.jpg

    Then she tried it again but it was about to end badly. Some of the enemies didn't follow Nudina but instead pushed Elly into a corner:

    27, Elly trängd.jpg

    A steady stream of Ice Blasts got Elly out of trouble.

    They reached Outer Cloister and Barracks. The Smith was child's play. Frost Nova, Static Field and Blaze quickly did him in. Nudina does not envy melee based heroes when it comes to The Smith.

    Charsi got her hammer back and Nudina kept herself away from her, at least for now.

    Down in Jail, Nudina held a Blaze show:

    28, Blaze-kax.jpg

    Look at the audience going wild!
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2017
    pharphis likes this.
  11. jiansonz

    jiansonz Diabloii.Net Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2003
    Messages:
    7,940
    Likes Received:
    836
    Trophy Points:
    323
    29, Charsi imbue 1.jpg

    Nudina found a non-magic Orb and decided to temporarily ignore what she thought about Charsi.
    She was curious to see what Charsi could achieve with that hammer.

    The result:

    30, Charsi-imbue 2.jpg

    Not bad. Two solid resistances, +life, +mana, +1 Ice Blast (that Nudina uses all the time). However, one could wish for more + skills. Orbs (like staves) can have up to +3 to up to three skills.

    Nudina equipped the orb but it was a stylish disaster:

    31, Bär Orb.jpg
    "Ouch! Looks like one of those rattles a baby would use!"
    "Haha, you're right."


    In the Cathedral, Nudina met a classic opponent:

    32, Bone Ash.jpg

    Nudina had recently learned Lightning and it came in handy here. Both Inferno and Static Field would have required her to walk close to Ash and then she had likely been poisoned a number of times (Bone Ash is a poison variant of Bone Mage). Charged Bolt is clumsy and unpredictable. Blaze might have worked, but Bone Mages have weird movements. Elly stood in the room next door and I did not want her to complicate this battle. Lightning deals 1-40 damage for 8 mana and it gnawed down Bone Ash eventually.

    A little bit down in Catacombs, Nudina found her first Unique:

    33, Blood Crescent.jpg

    By far the best melee weapon she had seen and one she could actually equip. She tried it and went to Gheed for advice on fashion taste:

    34, Testa Blood Crescent.jpg
    "No, that Pirate look isn't really you, but here in my compartments I have a delightful looking belt. It's completely golden-coloured and right now very affordable, and it goes perfectly with these blue shoes and bla bla bla..."
    "Okay, thanks for the clear message. No scimitar it is. C'mon Elly, let's leave..."


    Catacombs level 1 and one of the toughest battles so far. Nudina was stupid enough to cast a Lightning so that it hit all four Champion Tainted. Tainted are almost immune to Lightning. They all went into "shoot mode":

    35, Tainted Champions.jpg

    Ice Blasts and Elly rescued the situation.
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2017
    pharphis and Kitteh like this.
  12. Kitteh

    Kitteh Diabloii.Net Site Pal

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2011
    Messages:
    11,726
    Likes Received:
    2,187
    Trophy Points:
    534
    So awesome that I had to go back and like them when I got the end because I was too into it to remember :p Also, I liked the information at the beginning. I've always wanted to play some characters in older versions so it is nice to know, and might even help me figure out where to start!
     
  13. jiansonz

    jiansonz Diabloii.Net Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2003
    Messages:
    7,940
    Likes Received:
    836
    Trophy Points:
    323
    At Catacomb's level two, something terrible happened: Nudina's companion through the majority of the journey died!

    36, Elly död.jpg

    Below and to the left of where Nudina is standing now, she and Elly happened upon a Fire Enchanted Arach bosspack. It was a hectic battle and eventually Nudina decided to flee up to here. The problem was that Elly fled up into a parallel room, straight into unknown area. You can see her body in the corner. Nudina was pissed off, drank some potions, filled up with more potions and took revenge on the damn spiders:

    37, Hämnd!.jpg

    When she picked up items from the fallen spiders she was suddenly attacked by the nasty creep that probably killed Elly, another Arach boss. Nudina was startled because she thought she had cleared out everything nearby.

    38, Ice Shifter the Hungry.jpg

    Nudina could just guess what it was 'hungry' for. It had about the same look as Charsi had when it gawked at Nudina's behind...

    Back in Rogue Encampment, Kashya told Nudina EXACTLY how much Elly's life was worth:

    39, Ellys liv är värt hur mycket.jpg

    But Nudina had to follow the rules set up for her so she had to say goodbye to Elly.

    Down in the Catacombs again, Nudina found another weapon she could equip:

    40, Spjut-test.jpg

    No style points there either!


    It was time for Catacombs level 4 and Andariel.
    In the first round, Nudina became poisoned almost immediately and fled up to level 3:

    41, potent venom.jpg
    "Talk about a venomous lady!"

    Poison can not kill a character, just push down life to 1. I had triple-checked the area closest to the staircase so that there were no traps and no enemies lurking in a corner. Otherwise, Nudina's adventure could have ended in an embarrassing way...

    Second round, and this time there were no hiccups. The same tactics as in the fight with The Smith: Frost Nova (slow down), Static Field (massive damage) and Blaze (score the killing blow while fleeing):

    42, Andariel död.jpg

    In Rogue Encampment, Kashya diplomatically mentioned Elly's unfortunate fate:

    43, Lost sisters.jpg

    Nudina felt guilty. She felt responsible for Elly, but on the other hand, I've never managed to keep an unequipped rogue alive for as long as I actually did, to Catacombs level 2.

    We finish Act I with a positive image, Nudina's potions- and gems collection:

    44, ädelstenar.jpg

    The big sapphire is from Andariel. Skulls should be half as common as the other gems, so that I only found two is normal. The strange thing is that I only found a single topaz, but that's the RNG for you...


    Nudina is still alive and will see you again in Act II.
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2017
    pharphis likes this.
  14. pharphis

    pharphis Diabloii.Net Site Pal

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2011
    Messages:
    13,948
    Likes Received:
    1,893
    Trophy Points:
    283
    many of the images seem to be missing!
     
  15. jiansonz

    jiansonz Diabloii.Net Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2003
    Messages:
    7,940
    Likes Received:
    836
    Trophy Points:
    323
    I've seen this problem in the 5 stages of Grief tourney thread as well.

    Not sure if I can do anything about it, the images are all there when I look at the page. If I clear the browser cache and refresh the page, I can see them load again.
     
  16. pharphis

    pharphis Diabloii.Net Site Pal

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2011
    Messages:
    13,948
    Likes Received:
    1,893
    Trophy Points:
    283
    oh now I see them, too. I didn't do anything but come to this thread again because I saw you posted.
    Worth noting, though, @Elly @Noodle

    For the record it wasn't all of the last ones being missing or anything like that. It seemed the pics were randomly missing (it said Andariel dod.jpg)
     
  17. jiansonz

    jiansonz Diabloii.Net Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2003
    Messages:
    7,940
    Likes Received:
    836
    Trophy Points:
    323
    Act II

    Nudina started Act II at level 15 with the following stats and skills:

    STR 10, DEX 25, VIT 40, ENE 75, Life 114, Mana 143

    Frozen Armor 1 (not used)
    Shiver Armor 1
    Ice Bolt 1 (not used)
    Ice Blast 1
    Frost Nova 1

    Charged Bolt 1 (not used)
    Lightning 1
    Static Field 3

    Warmth 3 (regenerate mana 54% faster)
    Inferno 1 (not used)
    Blaze 1


    Nudina found herself in the desert town of Lut Gholein. The welcome could have been better.
    What was the point of straining Nudina's pretty fragile self-esteem with this?

    04, kaxig Drognan.jpg

    Nudina decided that this was pretty much the last Drognan would see of her.

    Atma, a desperate woman, wanted someone to clear up the sewers. "Someone who appreciates what I do," thought Nudina. Down in the sewers, Burning Dead were not particularly impressed by Blaze. They did go down if they walked in the whole length of a Blaze, but Lightning was much more effective:

    05, Power of Lightning.jpg

    On the other hand, Huntresses died so quickly in Blaze that I barely had time to take a picture:

    06, Power of Blaze.jpg

    Here, Nudina was chased by four Huntresses, but it seems like two have already fallen when the picture was taken.

    Third floor and time for Radament. Nudina lured away most of the undead far from Radament and slayed them with Blaze and Lightning. Then she switched to Ice Blast. It did not kill as quickly, but all remaining undead were turned into ice cubes, which meant that Radament could not revive them.
    When Radament was alone, Nudina closed in, burned off a stream of Static Fields, backed off and finished him with Lightning and Ice Blast:

    07, Radament.jpg

    Did this sound like routine play? Good, because it was. Nothing (except a few large Burning Dead Archer packs) down here in the sewers posed any threat to Nudina, and this boss really didn't:

    08, Fire Enchanted mage.jpg

    Sewers level 3 was packed with shrines, it was a veritable tool box. There was a shrine for every situation. Resist Fire Shrine here for example. Do you see Nudina's life? Poor Bane Thirst has hit with over ten shots and Nudina hardly feels it. Total humiliation.

    The adventure continued in the desert. Blaze was still awesome against Huntresses:

    09, Desert Blaze.jpg

    "Growl! Hiss! Aoo!" There was a lot of this in Rocky Waste.


    Out in Dry Hills, Nudina found something that caused her to speak directly to me, the player:

    10, Lightning Shrine.jpg

    "Nudina to jiansonz, can you hear me?"
    "Yes, I hear you, what do you want?"
    "Do you see what I see?"
    "Yes, a Resist Lightning Shrine." So what, you have cleared the entire Dry Hills except Halls of the Dead?"
    "Yes, but look at the map, human! Waypoint just a stone's throw from it!"
    "Yes, but I do not understand what you mean. You just run and Blaze Lightning Enchanted bosses without problems." What do we have in front of us? Bloodwitch, Beetleburst and his posse. I'm sorry, I do not see any need for it. "
    "Think further ahead..."
    "Coldworm, Dark Elder, Fangskin...FANGSKIN! OK, I understand. But how can you know what's so far ahead?"
    "I usually don't, but this time a little bird whispered to me..."
    "I do not know if I have the stamina to play all the way to Claw Viper Temple today..."
    "You can take how many breaks you want, but you'll play there. End of discussion"

    She was right. This was an opportunity too good to pass up.


    We continued. Halls of the Dead was next:

    12, Halls of the Dead.jpg

    Down there, Nudina encountered a strange enemy, a sarcophagus that produced mummies. Nudina discovered that it stopped spawning mummies if she stood right in front of it. After she zapped it with Static Field, she had trouble damaging the last part of its life. Ice Blast did not move the life bar and Lightning also seemed not to work well. Fire should work, but Blaze was useless (because the sarcophagus hardly runs after Nudina!). But she does have another fire spell. It was actually the best solution here:

    13, Mummy Sarcophagus.jpg
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2017
  18. jiansonz

    jiansonz Diabloii.Net Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2003
    Messages:
    7,940
    Likes Received:
    836
    Trophy Points:
    323
    An urn she kicked contained the (IMO) coolest monster in the game:

    14, Flying Scimitars.jpg

    Nudina threw a Lightning against them and the moment later they lay on the ground:

    15, Not Flying Scimitars.jpg

    Nudina could eventually obtain the Horadric Cube. It went off to Far Oasis, where Nudina was lucky with the enemies: Undead Scavengers (vultures) and Black Raptors. No maggots!
    Beetleburst & Co were of course there, but they ran willingly in Nudina's Blaze:

    17, Beetleburst.jpg

    Nudina made some unexpected enemies:

    18, Skorpioner.jpg
    "(Sob!) Clumsy human! First you trample Leif to death, then two seconds later Matilda suffers the same fate!"
    "Sorry, but I was busy fighting vultures. I didn't seem them. OTOH, even if I had seen them I don't think I would have...uh...I mean..."
    "Not talking to you any more. Let me mourn in peace."


    Then Nudina found the goal (or was that the hole?) in Far Oasis:

    19, Maggot Lair.jpg

    Interesting situation. Nudina is level 17 and has saved two skill points. Should she reach the breeding chamber before level 18, it is very uncertain if her limited offensive power can overcome Coldworm's breeding. Level-up is pretty close...

    20, Goo Pile.jpg
    "What is this?" "Leftover props from Alien? Gross!"

    One floor cleared. Do you think she'll reach level 18 in time?

    21, Level 2.jpg

    Has the bar not moved more than halfway? Indeed it has, and there are three floors in the lair. I think it's going to happen. And yes, when level two was almost finished, Nudina reached what all Sorceresses love, level 18!

    22, Level 18.jpg

    The difference between level 17 and level 18 may be hard to understand if you have never played a Sorceress. With the saved points, Nudina now gave herself three amazing skills:

    1) Glacial Spike. Damage 16-24 on the target and all enemies within 2.6 yards from it. In addition, these enemies are frozen for 2 seconds. All this for 10 mana. Most of all, an excellent tactical and defensive skill, but here in Normal also a brutal killer, especially if you add a few points to it. I immediately tied the left mouse button to it.

    2) Firewall. A classic from Diablo 1, and it's at least as good in D2. There is no skill that does more damage overall (apart from Static Field on enemies with high life). In addition, it is extremely easy to use if the enemies are standing still. Burns for 3.6 seconds, damages 70-93 per second, for 22 mana. It has a Casting Delay (one can not cast a another skill with Casting Delay during that time) of 1.4 seconds.

    3) Teleport. This is a solution to Nudina's biggest problem yet: speed. Without shoes that can increase her speed, she has had problems with some really fast enemies. Not so much any more. Nothing is faster than Teleport. But it requires some space to be able to easily control the teleports, so it does not solve all problems in confined spaces. But it's nice to have when you get surrounded. It's usually enough to reach a clear space so you can cast a Town Portal.


    Breeding chamber next. There was also a bunch of Black Locusts in it. Can not remember if I've seen that before:

    23, Queens lair.jpg

    Nudina cast Firewall after Firewall on Coldworm and used Glacial Spike to keep the maggot young at bay. Then a Firewall on every adult maggot and more Glacial Spike on the little ones. This proved to be a solid tactic:

    24, I Hate Bugs!.jpg

    Nudina is pretty well camouflaged here, isn't she?

    She made sure to bring the Staff of Kings from the chest, and when she took a Town Portal back to Lut Gholein and wiped all the maggot goo from her feet, a question still nagged her:
    "If those were the Sand Maggots, what about the Sand Flies?"
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2017
    pharphis likes this.
  19. pharphis

    pharphis Diabloii.Net Site Pal

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2011
    Messages:
    13,948
    Likes Received:
    1,893
    Trophy Points:
    283
    Did you know at the time (surely by now) that most shrines refill (except exp, gem, monster and maybe another?)

    I'm not sure in your single-pass tournament chars if you ever reused a shrine or not.
     
  20. jiansonz

    jiansonz Diabloii.Net Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2003
    Messages:
    7,940
    Likes Received:
    836
    Trophy Points:
    323

    Yes, I knew that. (The other non-refillers I can think of: Poison, Exploding and Fire shrines. (And Portal shrine, but it doesn't matter since the portal stays in that game anyway))

    The thing with the Resist Lightning shrine was that if I had saved the game and then started a new one, shrine placements and types would have been rerolled. Plus the ones in Dry Hills would have been off-limits to me anyway (since it was an area I had already cleared in an earlier game).
     

Share This Page