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Multiplayer Guide - Combination ideas for small parties if

Discussion in 'MP Forum' started by Ed from Russia, Jun 28, 2007.

  1. Ed from Russia

    Ed from Russia IncGamers Member

    Oct 21, 2006
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    Multiplayer Guide - Combination ideas for small parties

    Cool idea to make a MP forum. I just noticed it, though it may have been there for a while already.

    Although I normally play only SP, a friend and I play MP now and then (2 characters only), and we always try to come up with nice build combinations. The suggestions below are all things we have done or thought of. I hope it gives some inspiration to other MP enthusiasts. Though it focuses on 2 players, I am sure the ideas are also nice for larger (3+) parties.

    I will not cover specific builds, but just call them by their name. You probably want to look up a specific guide for further info before starting. Or send me a PM and I will give you a link or a quick description.

    Combo 1 – One-way boosters

    The duo that most players come up with quickly is a Sorceress with a Paladin using Conviction. I call this a one-way booster; the Paladin's Aura helps the Sorceress but the Paladin gets nothing in return. Different attributes can be boosted, each of which is shown below.

    Elemental damage boosters
    - Paladin with Conviction, e.g. Avenger
    - Necromancer with Lower Resist, e.g. Poisonmancer or Mage Lord
    Combine with:
    - Any Sorceress, Lightning Javazon, Lightning Trapper, Fireclaws Werebear
    - The following can be combined only with Necromancer / Lower Resist: Poisonmancer, Rabies Werewolf, Venom Assassin, Poison Javazon

    Physical Damage boosters
    - Paladin with Fanaticism, e.g. Zealot
    - Druid using Heart of Wolverine, e.g. Fury Werewolf, Werebear Mauler, Hunter
    - Necromancer using Amp Damage, e.g. Skellymancer
    Combine with:
    - Barbarian with physical damage (e.g. WW, Frenzy), Zealot Paladin, Smiter, Fury Werewolf, Werebear Mauler, Strafe / Multi Bowazon, Tiger Strike Assassin
    - Skellymancer or Druid Summoner – minions will benefit from booster

    Life / defense / Resistance / Life replenish boosters
    - Barbarian with Battle Orders, e.g. WW, Frenzy
    - Druid with Oak Sage, e.g. Wind Druid, Fireclaws Bear
    - Paladin with Salvation
    - Necromancer with Life Tap
    Combine with:
    - Any character
    - Druid Summoner / Necromancer – minions will benefit from booster
    - Combine Necromancer/Life Tap with melee characters only.

    Other types of boosters
    - Paladin with Redemption (e.g. Hammerdin) with any type of heavy mana user (e.g. Sorceress)
    - Barbarian with Battle Command gives +1 to skills to other characters

    Combo 2 – Two-way boosters

    In the examples of Combo 1 one character benefited from the combination, while the other didn’t. The best combos however are the ones where both characters benefit.

    Physical Damage two-way boosters
    Note: you need a way to deal with PIs!
    Combine 2 of the following:
    - Paladin using Fanaticism (e.g. Zealot)
    - Druid using Heart of Wolverine (Fury Wolf, Maul Werebear)
    - Necromancer using Amp Damage (e.g. Skellymancer)

    Life / defense / resistances / life replenish two-way boosters
    Combine 2 of the following:
    - Barbarian with Battle Orders, e.g. WW, Frenzy
    - Druid with Oak Sage, e.g. Wind Druid, Fireclaws Bear
    - Paladin with Salvation

    Two Paladins
    Get two Paladins with different Auras and both will benefit. Lots of possible variations. E.g. create 2 Zealots; one with Fanaticism and one with Concetration, and get a Might Merc to have even more fun.

    Combo 3 – Different types of damage

    By focusing each character on a specific type of damage, you have a way to deal with immunities while each build can invest all skill points in one area. The list below lists builds for each type of damage – take one from each to combine. Obviously, because the characters don’t benefit from each other’s skills this type of combo may not be as effective as the ones described earlier.

    Physical damage
    - Barb with Physical damage (e.g. WW, Frenzy)
    - Paladin with Physical damage (e.g. Zealot)
    - Strafe / Multi Bowazon
    - Maul Werebear, Fury Wolf, Druid Summoner (Hunter), Wind Druid
    - Tiger Strike Assassin, Kicker
    - Skellymancer

    Fire damage
    - Fire Sorceress
    - Fireclaws Bear, Fire Elemental Druid
    - Fire Trapsin

    Cold Damage
    - Cold Sorceress
    - Frozen Arrow Bowazon
    - Icemaiden Assassin
    - Frost Zealot

    - Lightning Trapsin, Claws of Thunder Assassin
    - Lightning Javazon
    - Tesladin

    - Bonemancer
    - Hammerdin
    - Berserker Barbarian

    Combo 3 – Tank and ranged attacker

    A logical combination is to have one character that can tank monsters while the other finishes them off from a distance. Select a tank and ranged attacker from the list below.

    - Any Barbarian (WW, Frenzy, Titan, Vitabarb)
    - Any Melee Paladin (Zealot, Avenger)
    - Werewolf / Werebear
    - Skellymancer (minions as tanks)
    - Druid Summoner (minions as tanks)

    Ranged attacker
    - Bowazon, Javazon
    - Any Sorceress
    - Wind / Fire Druid
    - Lightning / Fire Trapsin, Blade Fury (+Venom) Assassin
    - Hammerdin
    - Bonemancer

    Combo 4 – More of the same / themed builds

    It can be fun for both players to make the same build, or to base it on a certain theme. This may or may not improve the build’s effectiveness, but it does normally make it visually appealing.

    - 2 Skellymancers: an even larger army
    - 2 Druid Summoners: lots of wolves and ravens
    - 3 Sorceresses: one for each damage type
    - 3 Barbs – recreate the Ancients, and beat them
    - Werewolf and Werebear
    - Tesla Girls or Electric Ladyland (depending on your musical preference): Lightning Amazon, Lightning Trapsin and Lightning Sorceress
    - 2 Bowazons with 2 Act I Hirelings
    - 2 MA Assassins with 2 Shadow Masters
    - Slow-effect builds: e.g. Cold Bowazon with Necromancer using Decrepify + Clay Golem
    - Thorns Paladin and Iron Maiden Necromancer

    Combo 5 – Builds that don’t work single-player

    Some builds do not work (well) by themselves, but can be quite enjoyable. In multiplayer they can be combined with others.

    - Mojomancer: Necromancer that focuses on Curses. Curses such as Dim Vision and Attract are a great combination with ranged attackers
    - Auramancer: Great in large parties, but also useful in smaller ones
    - Singer Barbarian: another supporting build for large parties.
    - Undead Hunter (Paladin): focuses on skills and equipment that kills undead. Too specialized for single-player, but fine if your party members can take care of other monsters
    - Jailkeeper Necromancer: Based on Bone Prison and Bone Wall. Nice in combination with for example Trapsin or Bowazon
    - Passive Amazon (with maximum-strength Valkyrie): useless on its own but possibly fun in a party
    - Leap Attack Barbarian: if monsters are held in place (e.g. by minions), the Barb can jump from monster to monster to finish them off.


    Hirelings can add another benefit to your party. For example, the Act II Might Mercenary is great for a physical-damage combo. Act II or V hirelings are great tanks if party members prefer ranged attacker builds. Consider using other Hireling than normally for a change. Act I Rogues can be quite effective if you already have a character or minion capable of tanking.

    Some equipment (runewords) provide auras that can strengthen your combos. In multiplayer these are even more effective than in single-player.

    Magic Find
    In particular if you play similar builds, you may find items that several players want to have. Agree how to solve this before starting to play.

    What is the best combo?

    In my view, one of the following:
    - Skellymancer (+Amp) and Zealot (+Fanaticism)
    - Avenger (+Conviction) and Blizzard Sorceress
    - Lightning Sorc and Blizzard Sorc

    Which combo is most fun?

    Depends on the preference of each party member. I had most fun with my friend when we were both playing a Werebear; one Fireclaws and one Mauler. My next project may be to recreate the Ancients with 2 other players; I hope I can be the Leap Attacker.
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2007
    Shinra Beelzebub likes this.
  2. winmar

    winmar IncGamers Member

    Mar 15, 2006
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    It's very nice that you took the time to write this, im sure this will help alot of players who are new to MP.

    Good job! :thumbsup:

    Personally i like Fishymancer (with 1 point in LR) and Blizzard Sorc if you play untwinked HC for the first time.

    The fishymancer is actually great with any caster, since they provide alot of security.
  3. Thyiad

    Thyiad Moderator Single Player, D2 Assassin, Barbarian

    Mar 3, 2006
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    If you're in a position to get a party to play through, it can be absolutely fantastic.
  4. pancakeman

    pancakeman IncGamers Member

    May 27, 2005
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    Nice guide, it can definitely be useful for someone new to MP or just new to not uber-twinking. I can't believe the difference on between fully-twinked characters and untwinked, unrushed ones.
  5. Ed from Russia

    Ed from Russia IncGamers Member

    Oct 21, 2006
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    Just a few answers:

    @ Winmar:
    Tnx. I'm also a big fan of Blizzard (the skill, not the company) and Fishymancer.

    @ Thyiad:
    I'm lucky to have a good friends who likes D2 but I surely wish I had a few more; for me the optimum number of players is 4-5; too many and you get the impression that your role is too small.

    @ Pancakeman
    True. I always have one fully-twinked character (right now a Fury wolf). But I play a lot of untwinked; I like making original characters, but I don't mind if I get trouble in the later acts of Hell. I don't like doing MF runs so I often use items that are a lot weaker than the better runewords and uniques. Multiplayer is great because you can try out even more original builds, and doing it with a friend means that no-one makes fun of you.

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