Questions about Elemental Absorb

Tam Snotthrower

Diabloii.Net Member
Questions about Elemental Absorb

I was in hell with about 60% cold absorb from two items. all my resists were negative. But I thought since I had over 50% resist I would heal when hit with that element. Nevertheless, Cold Death Mages damaged me.
Also I have 40% lightning absorb, and I turned on salvation so my resists were positive.
Although I don't have over 50%, Bartuc's lightning seemed to be healing me.

Does anyone know exactly how absorb works? Is there a cap? If so, is it different vs monsters and vs people?


Diabloii.Net Member
There's a 40% cap on absorb now. It works the same in any situation (PvM, PvP).

AFAIK, you take damage first then are healed by the absorbtion.


Here's the strange thing. With my pally I have 95, 90, 95, 90 resists in hell. I'm wearing a drawf star, a ravenfrost, and a TGod's vigor. Now Uber Diablo's lightning don't seem to be hurting me at all, but his fire definitely does! (althought not much) Can someone explain why? I mean TGODs only absorbs 20 straight, and dwarf star absorbs 15 percent.


Diabloii.Net Member
Here is a sample calculation and by following it you will see how absorb works:

Lets say Uber Diablo has 2 elemental attacks (lightning and fire).

Example 1:

800 lightning dmg x 0.05 (95% resist) = 40 lightning damage
20 lightning damage is absorbed by Tgods (+20 absorb) to heal for another 20 damage, leaving you with 0 damage.

(because tgods is +20 absorb, 20 dmg is taken away from 70 - but since this is absorb and not resist, the amount taken away is then used to heal so in effect: you take 20 damage but at the same time you are being healed for 20 damage)

Example 2:

2000 fire dmg x 0.05 (95% resist) = 100 fire damage
100 x 0.15 (dwarf 15% absorb) = 30 <--- this is how much damage is being absorbed to heal you so ...
15 damage is taken away to heal for 30 life means 100 - 15 - 15 = 70 fire damage
Now lets say you wear a Rising Sun that gives you +70 absorb at clvl94. That more then covers the remaining 70 fire damage and heals you for 70 life.

In order to completely absorb elemental damage using absorb by %, you need 50% absorb which is impossible. Only with 50% absorb can you forget about resists.

The key is to have a high resistance (to reduce the overall damage taken) and then use direct absorb items (such as Tgods and Rising Sun). Since these add a direct number to absorb and not a %, you can easily absorb all the damage taken with a high resistance. However, % absorb is useful when the damage taken is still great (like in example 2) and there isn't enough direct absorb items that can cover the damage taken. In those cases, you would use % absorb to negate most of the damage and use direct absorb to take care of whats left over.

[edit] oops, was doing everything in my head and while trying to use "nice numbers" got ahead of myself and did it wrong - its now correct