Baal vs. Crushing Blow Merc A tangent started in a Baal Runner thread about Merc vs. Baal and what sort of weapon is best. I think this point is important enough to explore in its own thread. The consensus is that a crushing blow weapon is best- so why is this? I made the misjudgement of replacing my merc's Hone Yari with a high damage cruel voulge (700+ max dam), which on paper, seemed much better. Wrong. My merc with this weapon in a 3 player game hardly scratched Baal. Heres why: Baal Hell lvl has 493,701 HPs, according to the Arreat Summit. With the cruel weapon my merc is averaging maybe 1200 dam per hit (maximum damage he deals is 2200). That would require 411 successful hits on Baal, assuming he didn't heal or fight back, which he does.. And those are stats for a ONE player game. In the 3 player game I believe Baal had grown to 1,481,103 HPs, which would have taken 1,234 merc hits under ideal conditions... (not including other players, minions, spells, etc) What I found out is that a crushing blow drops a normal monster's hit points by 1/4 (25%). Boss monsters the effect is reduced to 1/10 (10%) These are melee amounts, halve that again for ranged attacks. These may be old stats-please inform if this has changed. A merc equiped with crushing blow (whatever the %), in a solo game, should take off 49,370 HPs off Baal with the first successful crushing blow. The next crushing blow would take off 44,433 (10% of what was left after the first blow) and so on. So thats roughly 41 times more damage than the cruel high damage weapon! Scaling up to a 3 player game should provide a first crushing blow of 148,110!! *most damage is dealt in the beginning when Baal HPs are highest further questions: *merc damage to bosses is reduced to 25% in Hell, however, this might apply only to weapon damage, and not to the CB modifier, so this is irrelevant? *how does -target defense (eth weapon) work with crushing blow? From what Ive read it should further improve the results. So it seems a weapon with 1 max damage but a % of crushing blow is far superior against Baal than a very high damage weapon without CB. Of course, high damage combined with high CB is the ultimate goal.