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Strafe zon hel survivability for cheap

Discussion in 'Amazon' started by ramian, Jun 4, 2005.

  1. ramian

    ramian IncGamers Member

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    Strafe zon hel survivability for cheap

    Hi,
    I've started playing D2 after a 3 year hiatus and have started off with a zon. She's level 75 and can survive nightmare pretty well, but the moment she steps out of the rogue encampment in hell, her behind gets handed to her on a platter. I started her off thinking there weren't much changes since 1.09 and dumped points into multi(9) and guided(15) and now regret it. I've since switched to using strafe and have maxed it out. 1 pt in frozen/freezing arrow too. I've dumped lots into penetrate(15) to up my attack rating in hell and about in pierce and 5 in valk. I'm currently trying to improve on dodge/avoid/evade but don't think I'll be able to get them to 50%. Her stats are strength at 110 (for the buriza on switch), vitality 45 (going to stop at 50 or 60) base energy and the rest into dex (around 300+ now).

    Item wise, I'm using a double shaeled Witchwild String and a buriza on switch. Resists on WWS really help. Armor I'm using Duriel's shell, helm is Tal's mask, belt is Tal's belt. Amulet is a rare with 20 prismatic resists, reduce poison length by 75% and some gold find. Rings are a 17 dex Raven Frost and a rare with Fire/Cold/Poison resists. LoH for gloves, and Threads of Cthon for boots.

    As you can see I'm not very rich. My only wealth is in terms of pgems and even that, in rather limited quantites due to the lack of survivability in hell where flawless gems drop aplenty. I personally think my zon is not surviving all that well because of the lack of damage. I think it took almost a whole hour to kill Blood Raven in hell, and that's not including all the times the zon died. On occasion I do switch over to the buriza, but then I lose the 40 resists from the WWS. I'd like some help/advice on how I can relatively cheaply improve my zons survivability in hell.

    Is Tal's armor an improvement over Duriel's shell? It does seem to have better defence and slightly better resists all round. The mf is just icing on the cake. Someone in the trade forum offered it for 40pgems. Or should I just save up for 2 ums (which will definitely take a while considering after 3 weeks of playing, I only have the items listed above and 25 pgems) and socket the duriel's shell and the tal's mask with them? Or would it be more advisable to save up for a pul (half the cost of an um) and upgrade the WWS to its Elite version to get better damage. I could probably get a Windforce for the cost of a pul (West SC ladder) but then I'd lose out on the wonderful resists on the WWS. I don't think I can afford the Anni charm or any charm with resists for that matter.

    Most threads here are about relatively "rich" players with all those nice runewords that I can probably only dream of having (although I, for the love of God, DO NOT dream about D2). So, you don't generally see much advice for zons on a tight budget.

    Thanks in advance.

    cheers!
     
  2. newerest

    newerest IncGamers Member

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    Tal's armor over duriels..hmm, I would rather use a up'ed twitch over both of them.

    A double shaeled WWS can be an awesome bow when using strafe, so I would remake her and this time, follow one of the strafe guides.

    If you continue down your road, I would max out guided arrow and mostly use the buriza.
     
  3. Chimaira

    Chimaira IncGamers Member

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    Get some rare boots instead of Threads...They can spawn with some nice resists! Tal's armor would be very cool, especially with the partial set boni. Also if you can get Windforce...It's just an awesome bow. It's also quite easy to pick up resists charms, they don't have to be perfect. Even a +20% resist grand charm can be very useful.

    I'd also get a stronger Valkyrie, if you get her to around lvl 15+ she will be very hard to kill, then just stand behind her+merc and shoot away. Then your only problems will be Gloams...
     
  4. ramian

    ramian IncGamers Member

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    Thanks for both your replies,

    newerest:

    Well, since my zon needs the resists to survive, I don't think a Twitchthroe would be all that useful. So the question of whether the Duriel's shell or the Tal's armor is better.

    I will indeed be remaking her, but I'll need a character to rush the new zon. And since this is my only character at the moment, I was hoping on getting this char to at least survive hell (even just barely) so that I can self-rush my other characters.

    I don't really see much use in guided arrow as strafe is just so much better. I end up using buriza a lot in hell as can't really kill anything quickly enough using the WWS.

    Chimaira

    I haven't really had much luck with gambling rares and the only pare of rare boots I've found doesn't have faster r/w and only lightning resists.

    Yes, given that I'm already using 2 other Tal's items, the extra mf bonus when using Tal's armor is certainly sweet.



    Yes, the Windforce is an awesome bow. I had an uber Windforce zon in 1.09. But, given my limited "funds" now, I'm torn between upgrading my WWS (with a pul), trading for the Tal's armor, and getting the Windforce.

    Which would improve my survivability in hell most? The upgraded WWS (I'll be shooting strafe at 9/3 and keeping my resists positive in hell), the Windforce (strafe at 12/3 given my existing LoH and a shael in the WF, but a loss of 40 prismatic resists) or the Tal's armor (a slight improvement in resists and defence over the Duriel's shell and some nice mf to boot)??

    Thank You.

    regards
     
  5. Damric

    Damric IncGamers Member

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    My strafer has all negative resists and survives fine. Her secret is passive skills. She can dodge most of the elemental stuff or just run away from it. I reccomend using decoy and valkerie a lot. A cheap awesome bow to make is Harmony in a Blade bow. Buriza is way underrated and may be the most powerful bow behind windforce and the high end runewords. If using buriza, I would stock up on as many cold damage small charms as you can. You will slow/freeze much longer.
     
  6. Omikron8

    Omikron8 IncGamers Member

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    Strafezons (no fury backup) who can kill in multiple player hell games and survive as well are not for the poor. If you want a good cheap zon use a fury hybrid or pure fury/charged strike.
     
  7. ramian

    ramian IncGamers Member

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    Looks like I'll need to remake the zon and focus more on passives. Just have a few more qns...

    1. How many cold charms would be needed to freeze monsters for a sec or 2 in hell given that the zon uses a buriza and has a raven frost?

    2. Also need an answer for the last qn in my last post?
    In addition to the above choices would be the Harmony suggested by Damric. Which would improve survivability in hell most?

    thanks!
     
  8. Damric

    Damric IncGamers Member

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    Actually I had great success with a rogue merc using harmony when I was poor and used buriza. Also pretty cheap is duress which really helps damage indirectly. An awesome cheap helm is guillame's face, even though crushing blow is a little less for ranged you will notice the difference. My strafe strategy has always been drop a valkerie and decoy and hide behind them.
     
  9. luiccn

    luiccn IncGamers Member

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    my zon is not cheap, but...

    Hi to all,

    my zon is not cheap, she uses a 160/60 gothic plate lifer (im non ladder, thats the best around the area), 120/45 in a diadem, hand of justive hydra bow rare passive+ias gloves, war travs high lords and dual +20 dex ravens.

    in all i got something around 500-600 def and 600-700 life, i survive every thing at hell, exept 4 souls, u just need nice damage adn good avoid/evade/dodge.

    thats all i say, and go 4 twitch + WWS + high lords + ravens + shako (if u can afford).

    Bye, Luiz
     
  10. TenzoR

    TenzoR IncGamers Member

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    Hello there,

    you know what you sound exactly like me!

    I was kicking ass in Nightmare (could almost solo Baal all by myself with my valk and merc)

    My merc was a lvl 70ish rogue /w cold arrow and a Rune Bow so she can hold out on her own most of the time.

    I switch from my lynca bow to a buriza and my secondary to a an unique wraith ghost glaive (also have a titan) so I have different types of elemental dmg

    My resistance in hell is horrible (all -40 or worst)

    I have a Mav armor and that's about it. I use a 35% MF ammy that does nothing but MF and my rings are nigel and manald ring. I have sigon boot, belt and glove (which are good for 10% life steal, 20 IAS, 50 MF).

    Here is what I did for my skills pt

    I maxed out penetrate for the bonus in AR and guided arrows

    I put enough into strafe to get 10 arrows for every shot (i think its around 6)

    I put atleast 10 or so in valk and for CS I put enough so I get 50% chance

    Pierce I added 5 or less because i didn't think it was that important since it's only useful in cow IMHO

    Then I just put the rest in Lightening fury.

    I'm going for an all around amazon. I have charms that gives me poison (50dmg/s), fire and lightening dmg. So just every possible elemental dmg for those nasty monsters in hell with two immunity. I can do okay in act1-3 in Hell alone. I just have to keep moving constantly and stay with my valk.

    I don't use strafe unless it's a crowd that is big and not very movable. AKA like those huge tree giant in act3. I use guided arrow more often to get as much dmg as I can in to 1 hit from my buriza.

    I hit run around, hit run around. I never stand still enough to get the monster to hit me (unless it's AoE)

    However, my build doesn't really work when it comes to act3 counsil members which can just rape me though thier elemental dmg ...but i'm working on that

    I have yet try any rune bow since they are hard to come by ..

    but I'm in the process of ditching my sigon for better boot (mav belt) and maybe use one of the gloves I found ..
     
  11. ramian

    ramian IncGamers Member

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    Hi,
    Thanks for all your replies, but I'd appreciate some advice on my last question...

    cheers!
     
  12. riplix

    riplix IncGamers Member

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    played my 1st bowazon (strafe/immolation arrow) last ladder and managed to solo hell. i really had problems at the beginning until i focussed on ias and used a eaglehorn (non upped lycanders before).

    i used black hades with 3 ias jewels, nightwing+ias, cats eye (imo best choice for a bowzon), eaglehorn shael, loh and gores.

    my resists were quite low but it doesn't really matter. ias makes this build shine. i hardly ever died with her.
     
  13. HCTwinJava

    HCTwinJava IncGamers Member

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    strictly for hell survival - i believe a nice Vipermagi would help a bowazon better. for my latest strafer, that was a choice I actually made. i'm not interested in duriel's shell, unless the ama needs 15 str to use something else - it's better for use when leveling up a level 41+ merc she hired.

    As for wpns, i'm not interested in strafing with WWS. my latest strafer is using a Buriza & a Harmony (blade, not mat/GM, so I can pass it to other chars later). Buri does roughly 50% more dmg, and is great for leech and for freezing a half screen of monters. Harmony allows her to escape fast, and though it attacks much faster it doesn't kill faster.

    Tal's plate is good for MF, though unless you use Tal's belt too, you probably would go for skulldler's (cheaper and better). WF is good. But I have several spare Buri, and I personally believe the overall PvM performance of Buri is close to that of WF. Bowazon is not high on my priority list. so she won't get anything close to Faith unless I feel I have to. Faith or close is certainly an overall better choice.
     
  14. riplix

    riplix IncGamers Member

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    gotta stress again that without high ias, a bowazon is pretty weak. a valk and merc should be able to take almost all hits and the passive skills should avoid being hit at all easily. you really won"t need a lot of res.

    an up'ed wws can reach killing speed close to a wf (with amp o.c.), so threre is nothing wrong with that. other options up'ed lycanders, gsa or eagle. you'll do fine with all of those. buriza is ok but imo doesn't compete with eaglehorn.
     
  15. ramian

    ramian IncGamers Member

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    Thanks for all the replies...

    I've decided to trade for the absolutely cheapest Windforce now. I should still be able to attain 9/3 strafe with a Shael in the WF, LoH and a Highlords amulet. I will most likely strafe w the WWS until amp triggers and then switch to WF to finish off. I chose the WF over upping the WWS as the knockback is a really impt to keep all those monsters away from my zon. (WWS is double shaeled and gloves are LoH so no knockback from anywhere else) When I can probably afford it, I will trade for a pul and upgrade the WWS to a Diamond bow and use it on the weapon switch. Will probably stick w the Duriels shell until I can afford the Tal's armor in the far far far future.

    My remade zon is currently at lvl 26. Are tomb runs the best place to quickly level her or do I have other choices? I'm dumping stat points into STR and DEX almost equally until she hits 134 str, after which it's dex all the way. Is there still an issue of her body popping if she uses certain items (boots, belt, armor) to contribute to the str req for WF?

    Stat-wise, D/A/E I'm gonna dump points until 50%, pierce until 69% (in the hope that I can afford/find a Razortail), max Valk, and some penetrate till to hit ~ 90%. Will be maxing strafe and having a single point in freezing arrow.

    If there is anything I should change about my zon's stat/skill point allocation, do let me know.

    Thanks.
     
  16. HCTwinJava

    HCTwinJava IncGamers Member

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    - 134 str is needed for WF, but your BASE str can be a lot lower. (my latest strafer has less than 100 base str, she is now using a 110 str Buriza + a 163 str Hellrack. She has been keeping 50 stat pts unused, some of which might go to str later. Body poping is out of question to her, b/c she has yet to die once for that to be possible - you could find out if this is issue to you, by having your zon killed in Norm act1 - you won't lose xp for this test).

    - for levelup: tomb runs until 20, move on to act3 until 25, and then move on to act4 and do Diablo at or after 30. On ladder, if untwinked and solo, my bowazon will reach ~18 in act1, ~28 in act2/3, and can't reach Diablo until 30+ (IIRC, my last HCL solo bowazon reached and killed ancients at 35). If twinked, tomb runs: 15-20, cows: 21-24, ancients: 24-25, normal baalruns: 25-40, then straight to NM ancients/baalruns.

    - D/A/E only needs some like 1/1/1 in the beginning, only add more when you need them more. 50%: after all +(passive) skills have been included and after you have reached a high lvl in your end-game gear.
     
  17. Linus_P

    Linus_P IncGamers Member

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    IMO, Harmony Blade Bow is one of the best deals going. It does decent damage and with a dash of Crushing Blows, it holds up very well. However, it really shines with PIs since it has the elemental damages and a merc with Insight means you can stand around a corner and spam GAs until the threat is gone...that is until you run out of arrows. :rolleyes: It's easy to find a 4 socket Blade Bow and the runes should not break you.
     
  18. HCTwinJava

    HCTwinJava IncGamers Member

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    Both Harmony and Hellrack are pretty new to me (they didn't exist in 1.09 and Hellrack's str req has been really scary).

    I made a Harmony on a blade bow lately: 160 max physical, +6 valk, and other mods. Looks very nice, but I have *permanently* transferred it to my summoner after I tried it on several different chars, including barb, sorc, pally, necro. My necro will use it to summon a valk (a bit tricky to make this valk stay with my necro, but found a way to do that) - must be fun!

    i also played with 2x Harmony-using bowazons (one used a mat bow) in Hell games lately. I wasn't impressed at all.

    For the 1st time I used Hellrack with strafe, I felt I could use it for a while: it's not as slow as I thought, and does good damage: 2K max damage (or 2.5K+ with Might aura) on my latest strafer, which is over 2x as high as that from harmony. I'd strafe with such xbows against bosses: for more damage with no extra skill points used.
     
  19. ramian

    ramian IncGamers Member

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    wouldn't the best bow for Harmony be a Diamond bow (for its tight damage range) and the reasonable str req?

    HCTwinJava,
    so what you're saying is that the body won't pop if some items were used to provide the strength req for the WF? Could someone else confirm this please?

    If I don't have any +skill items for my zon, then having D/A/E at 50% as well as pierce at 69% would be advisable right?

    Thanks!
     
  20. YogiRat

    YogiRat IncGamers Member

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    A diamond bow isn't a bad choice for Harmony, it's just easier to hit the strafe BPs with -10 bow.

    As far as popping goes, if you die just leave the game. Yeah you will lose exp and gold, but this HC player says "so what?"

    The diminishing returns on D/A/E start early. For 50% it's 12/7/12 in skills, but for about 40% it is only 7/4/7 in skills. You have to make the call here.

    The Duryshell is just fine. I don't see anywhere that you posted about having a Ravenfrost. Even if you do have a Raven, the plus to life and def per character level are great assets that are often ignored by most people.
     

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