Don't trust players you don't know.Well, tired of playing softcore, I wanted to try out hardcore. I decided to make a shapeshifting druid and leveled in act 1 for a little while and then I eventually got past Andy because a higher level sorc rushed us. However, at the beginning of Act 2, I noticed several "sewer run" games. Well to make a long story short, I did sewer runs because it was good experience, and I had a fun time playing with different people. However, on some occasions, a rude "pker" would join the game, act like we were his friends, and then he'd hostile us. Some would just enter the game, and hostile everyone. On one occasion, I think I was in a four player game, and then a lvl 32 pally joins. A lvl 32 Pally doing sewer runs? Sounded like PK to me, and guess what? He did try to pk us. But the most shocking part of this, was a lvl 12 necro in our group was his friend and it turned out that he was helping the pally find us . It really showed the dishonest nature of hardcore playing, I also had someone tell me about how another player filled the TP entrance with monsters and told him to go inside. Of course he died right away, the other player, who was a sorc, just wanted the loot. So basically "loot" = pk me now. And the funny thing I saw, based on my experience, and those of others I've recently read in these forums, is that pkers are mostly cowards. They kill others yet they don't want to die. They generally pick on unfair fights. Well the lvl 32 Pallyu I mentioned earlier tried to hunt us down and we all just TP into town. A player in the game got angry at the Pally, and bought his lvl 80 sorc. The lvl 80 sorc hostiled the pally and the pally just typed "lol", "you noob, you need a lvl 80 to kill a lvl 32" then I responded with "well you need a lvl 32 to kill lvl 18s" He replied "stfu". And also, how people screw with newbs. Some "free items" games are actually real, some people drop decent low lvl stuff for newbs to have. I could use some of the free stuff considering I use Arcannas staff as my primary weapon. But then there are some people who like to screw with newbs. They make fake games and some of the also have a "free items here" sign over his head. Then all of us mindlessly chase him around until he finally says "lol" or "noobs" and then he leaves the games. This made me feel pretty stupid lol. Or people who say "items in blood moor" and then they really intend to pk you. So my point is that hardcore really isn't better than softcore. I know people who say "hardcore is so much better than softcore", and that's what got me into it, but so far the aspect of hardcore has not been too promising.
There are plenty players who post here who you could trust to help you in private games.
Get a few friends who you know would not try to PK/rob/cheat you, make private games, and have fun.