[Guide] Gamebreaking Bugs and Crashes in Diablo 2 (1.00-1.14d)


Diabloii.Net Member
This is meant to be an up to date collection of all 'gamebreaking' bugs in D2 ranging from patch 1.00 to the current patch 1.14d. This includes all bugs which lead to loss of items, progress or even entire characters. The majority of bugs in this list are crashes and the losses are incurred by the rollbacks they cause.

The order in which the bugs are presented is not necessarily chronological nor inspired by their severity - however Classic bugs are listed before LoD bugs. Whenever possible I tried to give a precise window of patches during which each bug persisted but in some cases there is not enough information available to achieve this. (In particular Classic 1.07+ is basically the Wild West with only one forum member known to frequent it; as a consequence Classic and LoD are separate in this guide and Classic 1.07+ is ignored completely)

This list is neither exhaustive nor is it completely accurate. All corrections and additions (in the spirit of the first two sentences of this post) are welcome. Also if you know anything about the unconfirmed bugs listed at the end of this posts please tell me! :)

1. Classic

Difficulty Softlock (1.00-?.??)

This is a multiplayer bug with the following setup:
  • Character A has completed the quest 'Terror's End' in difficulty X.
  • Character B has not yet received credit for talking to Tyrael at the end of act 2 in a difficulty Y where Y is at most X.
  • Character B talks to Tyrael at the end of act 2 in difficulty Y while character A is present in 'Duriel's Chamber'
As a result the game will forget that character A has gained access to difficulties higher than Y but it will not forget that character A has completed the 'Terror's End' quest. Since completing that particular quest is the only way to unlock the next difficulty this means that character A is now permanently stuck in difficulty Y. (This is possible only because the game stores quest completion data and difficulties unlocked in two separate places)

If X = Hell then the only thing that can be lost is access to the 'Secret Cow Level' in Hell.

There are currently no reports on what happens when such a character is forwarded to the expansion and it is not known when this bug was fixed.

Lost Hell but still has NM. His next post confirms it was in a NM rush.

This references the previous link, this time with a Normal rush by a NM character and then with NM rush and Hell character. Confirms that killing Diablo again doesn't fix it.

Lemma at it again, making progress on the lockout grail, losing NM and Hell by doing a normal rush. Lockout Grail -3 ! :oops:

Barl notices the problem again...

...and Fruit settles it with a proper explanation.

de Seis thievin' (1.00-1.03)

The scariest monster in 1.00 bar none is 'Lord de Seis', he can literally crash your game and corrupt your character file ending your Classic experience just like that. This caused by the ability 'Thief' that 'de Seis' can cast in patches 1.00 to 1.03. Its functionality is simple: when 'de Seis' targets your character with 'Thief' it will drop one the potions in your belt to the ground.

Sadly this skill is bugged and can lead to crashes and corrupt your character file. One user reported an instance where the game freezes everytime a 'de Seis'-bugged character hosts a multiplayer game and does anything while another player is present in the game.

This bug seems to have a myriad of causes making it hard to find a common denominator. A good source on many of them is this post by GalaXyHaXz which I quote here in its entirety:
A little more info after testing with De Seis. Crashing may occur if:
1) A character picks an item up off the ground while being thieved
2) A character uses an uninterruptible attack whilst being thieved
3) Moving items in inventory while being thieved (f***s up the item buffer AFAIK)
4) Drinking the potion being thieved (partially fixed in 1.03)
5) Die while being thieved (fixed in 1.01, fully fixed in 1.03)

So long story short, if you want to avoid any crashes with De Seis, I would do the following:
1) Join game with guest and use TP to De Seis
2) Don't use any uninterruptible attacks
3) Don't pick up any item or use any item or move any item
4) Go to town to heal instead of using potions. If you can't make it S/E and don't die. Leave game and rejoin once De Seis is dead.
GalaXyHaXz goes on to note that emptying your belt before attempting to fight 'de Seis' is a good idea.

Another common cause of the bug that is not listed in GalaXyHaXz' posts is the picking up of stolen potions even after 'de Seis' has died.

The 'de Seis' bug is mentioned in the patch notes for 1.01 and 1.03 and finally dismissed in 1.04 with the words:
1.04 patch notes said:
Removed the pesky "thief" ability from Lord De Seis. (That oughta' fix him!)
The post mentions 'Leap' which is an uninterruptible skill that makes the belt inacessible.

Here TeeDeeBoy gets a crash upon picking up a stolen potion. 'de Seis' was dead in this instance.

A weird one: apparently a death 'Frost Nova' from 'de Seis' thieved all potions at once. Picking them up resulted in a crash.

VThief used Bash only, so not only movement skills are affected.

1.06/1.06b eating items (1.06/1.06b exclusive)

Due to the nature of item generation in Classic it is possible to find two items with the exact same fingerprints in a legitimate way. This happens mostly during the popular 1.00 Cow King runs where players will always take the same route from the red portal to the Cow King (As with racks his drops are influenced by the route you take to get to him). As a consequence pre-LoD trading is banned in the SPF as it is not possible to tell whether two items with identical fingerprints were generated in this (legitimate) way or by actual duping.

In this post GalaXyHaXz reveals that patch 1.06/1.06b did not bring any relevant game play changes but instead are meant to delete all dupes on a character when forwarded from 1.00-1.05b to 1.06-1.06b. The consequence of this is that patches 1.06/1.06b should be avoided by time travellers. All the gameplay changes usually attributed to 1.06/1.06b are already present in 1.05b and so this patch is the best option for anyone looking to reroll rares, play builds that are not viable in 1.00 (such as Bowazons) or whirl around with a Lance :)

Hover Bug (1.00-1.03)

This multiplayer crash occurs whenever a player hovers over a character whose 'Current Life' is greater than his 'Maximum Life'. This can be the case after a character quits the game while under the influence of 'Battle Orders'. For a more detailed description and a possible workaround I refer to this post by GalaXyHaXz which details the crash and its causes.

Perspective Crash (1.00 exclusive)

The game crashes when a player attempts to enter the 'Tomb of Tal Rasha' while perspective mode is enabled in the video settings. This was fixed in patch 1.01:
1.01 patch notes said:
Fixed the following 3 bugs that could occasionally crash the game:
  • Killing Lord De Seis (Act IV).
  • In Perspective mode Glide entering a Tomb in the Canyon of the Magi (Act II).
  • A multiplayer party fighting in the Kurast Bazaar (Act III)
Here happening to pharphis. It even has glide/perspective in the error message. Cut and dry.

2. Expansion

Regurgitator Bug (1.07-1.08)

If a monster of the 'Regurgitator' class eats a mercenary's corpse the mercenary and all of his equipment will be permanently lost (it is still possible to hire a new mercenary though).

This was fixed with patch 1.09, as per the patch notes:
1.09 patch notes said:
Fixed bug where Regurgitators would eat Hirelings and destroy them.
Prior to patch 1.10 'Regurgitators' could not spawn in act 5 so this bug is confined to act 4.

Delirium Crash (1.10-1.14d)

The runeword 'Delirium' was introduced with patch 1.10 and gets its name from the 1% chance to cast 'Delirium' on the wearer when struck. This skill transforms the wearer into a 'Stygian Doll' for one minute.

When an act 2 mercenary wears 'Delirium' the game may crash when the transformation is triggered. The current theory is that this occurs only if he is in the middle of a 'Jab' sequence when the skill triggers because the doll he transforms into does not have an animation for this skill and so the game doesn't know how to handle the situation.

There seem to be no reports of other characters crashing the game while wearing 'Delirium' but some people have reported that Delirium on an act 5 mercenary will cause him to become stuck in place.

2005 - This predates patch 1.11.

2008 - First mention of 'Jab' being to blame. Necro'ed by ioupainmax with information on the bug.

2017 - Effect of a 'Delirium' induced rollback, this happened in 1.13+.

Cloak of Shadows Crash (1.07-1.14d)

If an Assassin casts the skill 'Cloak of Shadows' near certain enemies the game may crash. Which enemies cause the crash vary from report to report but there are two constants among them: the Ancients and all stationary monster spawners. The later category of monsters consists of 'Foul Crow Nest', 'Mummy Sarcophagus' and 'Evil Demon Hut'.

Additionally people have reported this crash occuring in areas featuring 'Trapped Souls' and mobile monster spawners such as 'Grotesques' and 'Maggots' (potentially related to them burrowing).

To avoid this crash it is recommended to not use 'Cloak of Shadows' in areas with those types of monsters. The Assassin pets 'Shadow Master' and 'Shadow Warrior' will also occassionaly cast 'Cloak of Shadows' so they should be avoided in those areas as well.

Crow's Nest
Stony Field
Black Marsh
Far Oasis

Mummy Sarcophagus
Halls of the Dead levels 1, 2 & 3
Claw Viper Temple level 1
Tal Rasha's Tomb

(Note: Sarcophagi are map fixtures, they are generated with the map itself and are always in the same spot. In particular it is safe to use Cloak of Shadows when re-running one of the above levels which is already known to not have Sarcophagi; More precisely: the Sarcophagi are literally hardcoded onto some of the tiles the game uses to create the tomb maps)

Far Oasis
Maggot Lair levels 1, 2 & 3
Canyon of the Magi
Arachnid Lair
Spider Cavern
River of Flame
Halls of Pain (Guest monster in NM & H)

Trapped Soul
Outer Steppes
Plains of Despair
City of the Damned

Outer Steppes
Plains of Despair
City of the Damned
River of Flame
Halls of Pain (Guest monster in NM & H)
Worldstone Keep level 1 (Guest monster in NM & H)

Evil Demon Hut
Frigid Highlands
Arreat Plateau

The Ancients
Arreat Summit

This bug dates back all the way to patch 1.07 and has been reported ever since. Most theories about it seem to agree that it is related to monsters with certain AIs not handling the effect of 'Cloak of Shadows' correctly. It may be that the monsters affected by this crash have changed over the patches as their AIs have changed.

2007 - At the time of the Crash patch 1.11 was current and the OP even mentions the 1.11 FAQ

2014 - TheNix reports the crash in 1.07. Two posts later he states that the Assassin is unplayable because of it and that SM played into it.

2017 - Multiple People mention Grotesques as another affected monster type.

2017 - DaveW and onderduiker both reporting that the bug is still alive and kicking in 1.14d .

2018 - Fruit rules out 1.07 and 1.09. He told me later that at this point in time he had not started debugging the game yet so these were just ingame tests which can't rule out the bug for sure. (see the 2014 reference)

Peace on Hirelings Crash (1.11 exclusive)

With patch 1.11 Blizzard introduced seven new body armor runewords, among them 'Peace'. It features a chance to cast the Amazon skill 'Valkyrie' on striking which lead to issues with mercenaries wearing the armor or iron golems made from it. If they happened to trigger 'Valkyrie' with one of their attacks the game would crash as it can't deal with a 'pet' having a 'pet' of its own.

This was fixed promptly in 1.11b, not even two months after 1.11 was released. Both mercenaries and iron golems are now incapable of triggering 'Valkyrie' from 'Peace'.

3. Partially Documented

Corpse Recovery Problems (1.00)

What happened here? @maxicek

Countdown Crash (1.00)

1.01 patch notes said:
Fixed a bug that could crash the game during the countdown after completing the final quest in Act IV, if the player used Waypoints to return to the earlier Acts.
What is up with this, has anyone encountered this bug?

Harmony Crash (1.10?-1.14d)

The game crashes when a character switches to a Harmony bow too early during the character loading process. (Very noticeable with Pindle runs)

ATMA and 1.07 (incomplete)

ATMA can corrupt 1.07 characters and stashes if it comes into contact with runewords or items with the Hit Freezes Target mod, see the reference for a list.

Still unclear, what happens if ATMA interacts with the following items?
  • Cham Rune
  • Vidala's Rig full set on a character
  • Barbarian Helms

Detailed reference on the topic, doesn't mention barbarian helms though.

Thanks and Credits

Special thanks to @GalaXyHaXz and @Fruit for doing extensive ingame testing, frame by frame analysis, code digging or any combination thereof to get to the ground of some of these bugs.

I'm also grateful to all the people who reported crashes and bugs, even very disheartening ones (like @Lemma who got the Difficulty Softlock three times in a row and still kept going! ;)) instead of keeping it to themselves and hoping it wouldn't happen again.

None of this content is original, I mostly just compiled a lot of scattered information so that people may actually find it. I hope it will prove useful and prevent future losses!