The Living Colour Tournament

Pb_pal

Diabloii.Net Member
Gort resumed his journey hacking his way through his enemies with his trusty axe. He promptly hit lvl 18 and immediately assigned Concentrate to his LMB, never to look back. It means we have to do some mana guzzling when we are using our war cries, but it's worth it for the additional killing speed.

His first test with his new skill was The Smith. Battle Cry made him pretty harmless, and we manages to take him out without any issues. I haven't played many barbs in my day, but once thing I know for sure now is that they are absolutely awesome in the early game. We had zero issues on the way to Andy. Between Taunt, Howl, and Battle Cry there are rarely situations that feel like they are out of control. Couple that with fast killing speed and a decent life pool and it was a breeze. We made ourselves a new little toy for the Andy fight. If anyone is wondering whether 1% mana leech is enough to keep a skill with a mana cost of 2 going at this stage of the game, it isn't. :p

So we cleared out her level, and Gort went face to face with the Maiden of Anguish:



With Paige's help, and Battle Cry, the fight was easy and finished in under a minute. Her drop was filled with rares, though none were overly useful and they were all vendored but the ring, as we were pretty much out of stash space by this point (including both his teammates' stashes).

To remedy the space issue, Gort pressed onwards in search of the cube. The first order of business was to trade Paige out so she could stay with her sisters in the now-freed wilderness on Act 1. We hired Chalan, the Defiance Guard to help us on our journey. His style meshed more with Gort anyways, as he likes to get very personal with his victims.

First stop was the Stony Tomb, which we worked through and eventually got rid of that pest Creeping Feature. As you can see, Battle Cry was used again. It has become our go-to cry, we are liking it quite a bit. We were delighted to find out it even works on Sarcophagi!



We are letting Chalan get most of the kills for the extra MF as our plan is still to do single-pass with our three characters as far as it's feasible. Luckily Chalan is quite the warrior, and letting him do the killing hasn't slowed us down at all. We pressed onwards and FINALLY retrieved the cube. What a blessing it was to be able to cube everything and free up some space. This whole no extended stash thing is really interesting, and I'm really looking forward to (but kind of terrified of!) making some tough decisions later on about what to keep for our team. To give you an idea of what the space issue was looking like, here is the spillover of what we have so far.



This is what's left over with Gort's stash filled, and Tao and Sheela's stashes and inventories jammed completely full. So we cubed everything we could (gems, rings, ammys) and finally had some breathing room back! We also cubed some savage polearms and came up with this:



Not bad! Chalan isn't strong enough to use it yet, so he's using a plain Savage poleaxe (72% IIRC) for now, which works just fine. :) We had to test out his new stick, so we dropped down into the Sewers and disposed of Radament before taking a rest for now.

The S/U have been raining down on Gort like crazy. Nothing incredibly useful yet, but he's getting tempted to start moving up through the tiers soon. The only thing really holding him back is that we haven't found any super great rares yet, and we want to keep our MF fairly high (due to single- pass).

Finds:
- Our 3rd Cleglaws Shield
- Death's Sash
- Pluckeye
- Gorefoot
- Civerb's Ward
- Axe of Fechmar


Next up: Tao will start her quest!


Gort the Conc. Barbarian with Chalan the Defiance Guard - lvl 23, Far Oasis next

Tao the Hydra Sorceress - lvl 1, Rogue Encampment

Sheela the TS/DTail Assassin - lvl 1, Rogue Encampment
 

Pb_pal

Diabloii.Net Member
Tao followed in Gort's footsteps and took her first steps out into the Moor. Seems as though Gort scooped up all the luck, as she didn't see a single gem, much less a topaz, in the Moor or the Den. Regardless, she is having fun beating monsters to death and flinging Fire Bolts around, and cleared out the Den without issue. Corpsefire was left as the last man standing, but soon succumbed to a steady stream of firebolts.

We kept fighting on and picked up Maeko the Fire Rogue to join us. Tao liked her attitude, and her penchant for burning things. Yes, she will fit in just fine. They cruised along the Cold Plains and cleared the burial ground easily, taking Blood Raven down while they were at it. This was one of the easiest Blood Raven fights I've had. She didn't run much, and the whole thing lasted less than a minute.

Coldcrow, we had to be more careful with. Unlike Gort, the arrows from Coldcrow's pack actually did some serious damage to Tao. We Static'ed her down as quickly as we could, and Maeko finished her off pretty quickly. After that her pack and the rest of the Cave were cleared out.

Treehead and his brutes jumped us right out the the Underground Passage.



They were no match for our burning duo. A healthy dose of Static again weakened them enough for Maeko to clear them out. After this we popped down into Tristram, saved the old bird and burned Griswold to death before finishing to clear out the Dark Wood.

We got a weird floor in the Countess' Tower that I can't recall seeing before. It's just one straight shot from stairs to stairs, no offshoots at all. Cool.



Countess dropped us a Ral, which is nice as I have a feeling crafting ingredients will be a hot commodity for the team later on when I try to move up through the gear tiers. We pushed through the jails, dispatching Pitspawn while we were down there. We did have one NDE in the jails, when a group of Extra Strong skelly archers surprised us around a corner. A couple rejuvs bought us some time and we were able to get away without too much trouble. We've been pumping Fire Ball so far, and let's just say it's been ripping through absolutely everything. As long as we have mana pots to guzzle, nothing can slow us down. Tao's plan is to keep pumping FB until we hit 30, and hopefully Hydra can just take off from there.

The rest of the trip to Andy was not exciting, and very safe. As mentioned, FB continues to wreck everything it comes across, including the angry lady herself:



The drop was terrible, but that's okay! She is now resting in Lut Gholein, chatting with Gort about strategies for the desert.


Finds:
Well I mentioned that Gort seems to have stolen all the luck, and it sure seems that way. Tao found 0 S/U so far, and just barely scraped together 6 chipped topazes for her gear. Here's hoping it gets better in Act 2!

--

We also decided to start up with Sheela, and the stash space crunch has become very real. So far I've been able to keep the character I'm playing's stash clear to pick up whatever I want along the way, but that's not the case with Sheela. It's going to get extremely interesting later on trying to figure out what to keep. I'm guessing the hardest decisions are going to be balancing between what runes/gems/jewels to keep around for crafting/socketing/upgrading purposes. Also, and this one scares me, keeping enough Full Rejuvs around will definitely be a struggle. This is going to get interesting!

So I've decided to take Sheela up to Tier 2, and get her equipped with rares fairly early on. This decision is partly to alleviate some storage space issues, and also to help keep the playing fresh and more interesting. So off she went into the Moor, following in the footsteps of her predecessors!

Easy going right out of the gate. Tiger Strike makes for some serious killing power right off the bat. She cleared the den easily and moved up through the Cold Plains, hiring Elly the Fire Rogue to come along with her. Things are extremely smooth, and there isn't much notable going on. I mentioned Tao had one of the easiest Blood Raven fights I've experiened, well Sheela had an even easier time. She hardly raised any zombies, and between TS and Elly, she went down super quickly.

Sheela hit lvl 12 in the early stages of the Cave, so she was lucky enough to have CoS for the Coldcrow fight. With her group blinded, and TS receiving a constant stream of points, Coldcrow was dead before we even took a screenie. Her group dropped us a nice rare bow, so we took it as a sign and upgraed Sheela and Elly to gear tier 2! As mentioned, this frees up significant storage space, and makes for a nice change of pace. :) The gear switch also gave us some LL and ML, so we can use DTalon (until DTail is available) much more freely. The duo is tearing through absolutely everything right now.

To give you an idea of how strong TS+DTail is right now, this is how much damage we did to Treehead with only one fully charged kick (and a couple pot shots to charge back up, plus whatever Elly got in).



It only took one more kick and whatever arrows Elly got off to kill him. We also took @jiansonz advice from Karna's journey in the LOI tournament and put TS on left click to free up the right click for any CoS, or other spells we will need. Much better! I can't believe I played assassins any other way up until this point. Now maybe one day I will make the transition away from using the F# keys for my skill hotkeys. :p

So Griswold was kicked in the teeth until he died (funny, he's in nearly the exact same spot as Tao killed him. Guess he didn't learn his lesson!), Cain was saved, and we moved on up through the Black Marsh. We also cleared out the Countess' Tower before ending the session. She dropped us a Tir rune for our troubles.


Finds:
Death's Sash (our 2nd)

So there we are. The whole team has at least started their journeys, and they're having a blast so far! Looking forward to everyone getting their cubes so that all these gems and everything can become more reasonable and have some room to start storing some of the better goodies I find along the way.

--

Gort the Conc. Barbarian with Chalan the Defiance Guard - lvl 23, Far Oasis next

Tao the (one day) Hydra Sorceress with Maeko the Fire Rogue - lvl 20, Lut Gholein

Sheela the TS/DTail Assassin with Elly the Fire Rogue - lvl 16, Black Marsh (The Hole next)
 

PSYCHO

Diabloii.Net Member
It's damn good to be able to type on a computer, versus painfully trotting out repeatedly misspelt garbage on a phone.

Major update time!

First of all, I'm really missing having a third character, if anything just for the additional cube and stash space - but then I think about it a little more and realise that I'd still be in the same dilemma, except I'd be hoarding gear for three characters as opposed to two. I do miss my Necromancer, but with all the gear I've found, dropped or sold, I'm regretting not making a Paladin, Barbarian or Sorceress.

GaleForce, the Druid, is making his way through Act III steadily and with pace - if there were ever a good enough reason to pump points into Fissure over everything else, Act III would be that reason. Flayers are dropping like flies and nothing can stand in GaleForce's way. GaleForce is finding a good lot of items for someone that's only really running with 6% MF (now 21% thanks to the Rare Ring from the Gidbinn quest). I was regretting making the early move to Tier 2 gear with him, but it's now working out fairly well. I gambled two rare Polearms (including a Dual Leech, Socketed Rare with ED that's sitting on his merc), but have since replaced out his own weapon with a Rare Flail/Shield combo.

I'm happy to report that he has also filled out his Tier 2 set completely, and should be able to move onto Tier 3 whenever he is ready (no idea when that will be just yet, honestly). I've decided that Mephisto in particular is going to be my first stop for both of these characters to MF. I figure that with enough goodies from there, we could be set until NM Andariel (definite stop).

Fireworks, the Amazon, blistered through Act II. I messed up by trying something "new" - but maxing out Magic Arrow first was never going to work, so I respec'd into a trusty Poison/Lightning/Cold Zon (somehow that's going to work later on - yeah right, another respec will be necessary). Maxing out Poison Javelin was a great idea, as most monsters drop after two doses of poison, and I predict Act III will be pretty breezy for her as well.

Item importance is coming into play big time across all characters. Glad to say I made my first Perfect Topaz (already put into a 3OS Breast Plate I shopped earlier), after finding a lucky shrine (Tip: Always keep a Flawless on you just for the free upgrade). All runes have been upgraded as far as they can go just to conserve space, and all gems have also been upgraded as much as possible too. The only real problem now results from holding onto gear for future use. A shortlist of items sitting in Fireworks' inventory/ingame stash are as follows:

Razortine, Pelta Lunata, Gorefoot, Stoutnail, Cathan's Amulet, Civerb's Shield and 2x Arctic Furs.

That's not to mention the Rare Gear she's hoarding for the "just in case" move to Tier 2, which includes an Amazon Bow, set of Gloves and Boots and a Throwing Spear too. Amongst all these items is no less than six or seven -15% Jewels and a couple of 20 Poison Damage Jewels too (should probably use the latter sometime soon).

LC_Fireworks - Lvl 26 - Act III
LC_GaleForce - Lvl 28 - Act III (Khalim's Heart)
 

PSYCHO

Diabloii.Net Member
Big Addendum

My aim is to make this difficult, not clearly impossible. If you are hoarding MF gear but don't have a piece of gear to fill every set of your MF gear, you may wear your normal gear where it is missing in order to give some leniency to the "space saving" factor.

Note that this only applies for MF runs - not normal play.
 

Pb_pal

Diabloii.Net Member
Quick update as the whole crew has made a bit of progress!

--

Gort

Gort moved on and hit lvl 24 in the Maggot Lair, giving him access to BO. He now basically feels indestructible. Everything dies in a few hits, and with the war cries he never really takes very significant damage at one time. In fact, we've gotten a bit lazy with his potion drinking, and have allowed his health to be chipped down more than we should a few times. We'll have to change this habit going forward. Chalan is doing great too, having no troubles so far with his savage poleaxe.

Once the staff was acquired, we moved through the CVT swiftly, finding nothing of significance other than a Berserker's Axe, which we have no use, or space, for at the moment. It was vendored for some extra cash in Gort's pocket. Even the Unravellers were quite simple, as we would just howl away the skellies and take out the Unravellers right away in peace.

We were a touch worried about Fangskin and his pack, but it turned out that was unnecessary. Gort and Chalan killed him so fast, I didn't even get the screenshot off in time:



Kinda cool anyways, as I took the screeny right as Chalan shattered the big snake boss. So Gort grabbed the amulet and headed back up to town, where he would wait for now until his companions caught up a little bit.

--

Tao

Tao had the most important job out of the trio to get done, get the cube. Our space is completely filled up again, and finding the cube will allow her to cube up all the lower gems and rejuv potions she's holding on to, and give our team some much needed stash space once again.

First things first, Maeko the Fire Rogue was sent home to be with her sisters, and Hazade the Prayer merc was hired to take on tanking duties. She immediately found Berserker's Hatchet upon leaving Lut Gholein. As Gort mentioned, this is a useless find, but since Tao found exactly 0 S/U in Act 1, we were hoping this would be a sign of things to come in the desert!

She made short work of Creeping Feature, as Fireball is just completely destroying everything Tao sees so far. He dropped a decent pair of boots, which we will give to Sheela, as she is in gear tier 2 (rares), and she's a kicker, so upgrading the boot type is always nice for the damage boost.



As we mentioned, FB is unstoppable right now, so she moved up through the Halls of the Dead at blistering speed. She cleared it out and snagged the cube, finally allowing her to get some much welcomed stash space. I really don't know what I'm going to do later on once the good gear starts piling up, I'm having enough trouble as it is with the stuff that isn't even good!

After this, she popped down to the Sewers, and got some vengeance for Atma, before clearing out the Far Oasis and taking a break for now, as Sheela has some catching up to do back in Act 1.

--

Sheela

Sheela picked back up at the Black Marsh WP, heading to the Hole to clear it out before moving on through the Tamoe Highlands. As previously mentioned, she is in gear tier 2, and unlike her two teammates, she is forgoing MF gear and wears the best fighting gear she can find (as long as it's rare of course!). Because of this, progress is quite simple and straightforward for her, but that doesn't mean it isn't fun. :)

Here's a cool shot from the Hole lvl 2 of the power of CoS:



She moved up through the Tamoe Highlands, clearing the Pit easily and quickly. In the Barracks she finally hit lvl 18, getting her access to Shadow Warrior, and her new kicking skill Dragon Tail. Things immediately got even faster, not to mention safer with a new tank in the mix. The Smith was melted in no time, and the trio of ladies moved on through the jails.

There isn't much else to say about her short trip other than DTail absolutely rocks right now. With the Shadow to do some tanking in tough situations, even what would be pretty scary packs are but mere annoyances for Sheela. I'm sure this has to do partly with the fact that she's in fighting gear, and I'm used to playing through normal in pure underpowered MF equipment. Either way, she's having a great time, and cleared the rest of the Jails before stopping at the Inner Cloister for now.

She didn't really have many finds other than Cleglaw's Shield (all 3 characters have found at least 1 now), and this cool ring, which she will hand off to Tao:



So there you have it! Like I said, small progress from everyone, but at least they're moving!

--

Gort the Conc. Barbarian with Chalan the Defiance Guard - lvl 25, Palace

Tao the (one day) Hydra Sorceress with Hazade the Prayer Guard - lvl 23, Maggot Lair

Sheela the TS/DTail Assassin with Elly the Fire Rogue - lvl 19, Inner Cloister
 

Pb_pal

Diabloii.Net Member
Gort

Gort was getting eager to get back out there and swing his axe, so he spoke briefly with Drognan, and then headed down into the palace. He is still killing enemies in typically 3-4 hits, but I'd like to get a better weapon for him at some point. Right now, Chalan does the majority of the killing with his savage polearm. They easily cleared out the 3 floors of the palace, Fire Eye didn't even give him any issues. The Arcane Sanctuary slowed us down a bit due to being filled with Ghosts. It wasn't a huge deal though, and soon enough we were through to the Canyon, which was promptly cleared.

Time for the tombs!

Unravellers were dealt with the same way as during the CVT. Howl away the skellies, Taunt the Unravellers over and chop them down. Gort can then loot everything while Chalan cleans up the rest of the baddies. Overall quite an easy and quick trip through the tombs. Kaa's was the last false tomb that we cleared, and he ended up being a bit tricky. We used the same tactic on him, and once he was alone he was manageable. We had to be careful to stay out of the bolt paths though, as they stung quite a bit. We got nailed by a couple at one point, but a quick juve kept us nice and safe.



So after clearing out the true tomb, we topped up on thawing potions and went down to greet the big bug himself. He ended up being very easy. He never moved from that spot, and never even looked at Gort. Neither Gort nor Chalan needed any health pots. His drop was decent. The ring ended up being Manald heal, which we will definitely hang on to for use down the road once someone makes it up to the top tier.

Other finds:
-Berserker's Helm (Arcane) - vendored
-Skewer of Krinitz (Flase tomb 1) - Hm..we'll hang on to this one, I can see Sheela using this if she gets promoted to the top tier.
-Dimoak's Hue (False tomb 3) - vendored
-Isenhart's Dwors (true tomb) - vendored
-And a bunch of fun rares for Sheela to try out

--

Tao

Tao easily navigated the Maggot Lair, and found the staff without troubles. The straight hallways are a dream for FB, and whenever Hazade would get caught up, a quick teleport was the remedy. After this, a quick trip to the CVT went smoothly as well. Tao is a serious powerhouse right now, so there isn't a whole lot to say. Fangskin was killed from the safety of the altar:



After this, she cleared the Palace out, offed Fire Eye quite handily, and is currently taking a breather at the Arcane Sanctuary. I'm excited to get ehr up to lvl 30 so that she can start using Hydra. It's a skill I haven't ever really used before, so I'm curious to see how it fares!

finds:
-Crushflange (from Coldworm) - we are definitely hanging on to this one, it screams usefulness as a backup weapon for Sheela down the road
-Gorefoot (Lost City) - our 2nd, vendored just like the first.


--

Sheela

Shela is the lone team member lagging behind in Act 1. We are purposely playing her behind the other two, so that she can take advantage of any rare items they find along the way. So far this tactic is paying off, and she is able to upgrade her gear before every playing session. I'm glad I bumped her up to the second tier so early, it gives some extra excitement when ID'ing all those rares that drop along the way.

Like Tao, she is an absolute powerhouse right now. She took off from the Inner Cloister WP, and killed Bone Ash in a single fully-charged kick before ducking into the Catacombs in search of the big gal. The Catacombs were cleared so quickly and easily that we decided to take Andy on a /p8 for fun. It was no problem at all.



Andy died easily, and neither Sheela nor Elly were ever in any serious danger, with Elly even surviving the poison and the fight as a whole. The drop held nothing of use for her, unfortunately. She is currently waiting in Lut Gholein where she waved hello and goodbye to Gort as he could now sail off to Kurast. I'm excited to have the last of the 3 chars get their cube, and be able to really start digging in on resource management. This means my next task with the team will be pushing Sheela through to the cube, and then probably continuing my tactic of plodding each forward in small segments to try and stave off playing the same parts of the act over and over.

--


Gort the Conc. Barbarian with Chalan the Defiance Guard - lvl 28, Kurast Docks

Tao the (one day) Hydra Sorceress with Hazade the Prayer Guard - lvl 26, Arcane Sanctuary

Sheela the TS/DTail Assassin with Elly the Fire Rogue - lvl 20, Lut Gholein
 

PSYCHO

Diabloii.Net Member
GaleForce is indeed a very safe Mephisto runner. He's about 32 runs through his set and has found a few nice Magical upgrades for Fireworks, most notably a low level Zon bow with +1 Skills and some ED - a definite upgrade over the simpler Magical bow that was shopped, and ultimately vendored. Beyond this he has also found a plethora of Rare upgrades for himself, and is now wondering how to manage the lack of space with some of the Sets and Uniques he's also finding.
 

Pb_pal

Diabloii.Net Member
I'm still playing this one! I've been mostly focusing on my S/U Necro right now, but I've still been playing these guys in short stints along the way as more of a long-term project. It's a shame more people didn't join this one, it's quite fun even when taking it as a single-pass approach like I'm doing (foregoing the MF runs). I'm just going to put it out there that I fully intend to take all 3 of these characters through to Guardianship, even if it takes a REALLY long time. So you guys should still join this one! A little extra company is always nice, and I'd love to hear how other people deal with the no-extended-stash, and the gear challenges. :)

--

Sheela

I just quickly checked my last update, and realized I forgot to include something last time!

*Sheela has decided that she's going to keep a Rogue as her mercenary for the duration of her adventure. She figures between the three team members, she should be able to scrape together suitable weapons for her along the way. Now since DTail does fire damage already, we made sure to switch over to a Cold Rogue before we left the wilderness of Act 1 for good (as re-visiting acts is forbidden!). So Elly the Fire Rogue has been retired for a while now, and Gaile will be our companion until the journey ends, however that may be. :)*

Okay, now for the real update.

Progress is quite quick and simple for Sheela as she set out into the deserts in search of our third and final Horadric Cube. We found very little resistance along the way, with Creeping feature succumbing to Sheela's kicks and Gaile's cold arrows rather quickly and harmlessly. Before long we had acquired our last cube, and breathed a slight sigh of relief now that all 3 characters not only have the extra space, but the ability to cube!

After a quick stint back to town to clear out the sewers and dispose of the old pest Radament, the three ladies continued their way through the desert.

The next task was to clear the Maggot Lair. It went rather smoothly, as Sheela is very strong 1-on-1 in the narrow hallways. The only thing we had to watch out for was beetle groups in the open rooms. If she released a fully charged DTail in there, the explosion would trigger some serious fireworks, which hurt quite a bit. We mostly just let Gaile handle these rooms, as she has a pretty decent bow for this stage of the game. Soon enough, the ML was cleared, and the queen herself had fallen. This is where Sheela stopped for now, as Tao has been itching to throw some fireballs around in the arcane sanctuary for a while now.

finds:
- Snakecord (Creeping Feature) - vendored

--

Tao

The Arcane sanctuary was FUN. Fireball really shines here, as the monsters are forced into a natural streamline. The only thing that sucks is the huge mana cost, but luckily enough mana pots drop to fuel our habit for now. Once the Canyon was cleared, it was time to take on the false tombs. I wish there was more to talk about quite frankly, but the tombs were extremely uneventful. Chalk it up to a stupidly powerful fireball (slvl17 now), and the fact that we hardly seemed to draw any Unravellers. Even when we did draw Unravellers, they were only a minor inconvenience as the skellies melted very quickly to Tao's fireballs. Not even Kaa slowed us down, although he did provide us with some pretty sweet fireworks to watch:


.
Duriel himself was an absolute joke, and lasted about 15 seconds. He dropped nothing of any real value except that the gloves were an extremely slight upgrade to Sheela's current pair. So an unremarkable act closes, and Tao is hanging out with Gort on the docks after a quick boat ride.

finds:
- Isenhart's Armour (Arcane Sanctuary) - vendored
- Angelic Sickle (False Tomb 4) - vendored, as we already have one that we're hanging on to
- Umbral Disk (True Tomb) - vendored

--

Gort

After a quick chat with Tao about her adventures thus far, Gort headed out into the jungle. He wasn't much for conversation anyway.

Again, more straightforward hacking and slashing for Gort. At this stage of the game, it's still quite easy to upgrade magical weapons consistently, so he is having no problems maintaining killing power. Our first test came against Sszark. Gort taunted his minions over one by one from around a corner, where he and Chalan easily dispatched them. Once they had taken out the minions, Sszark was very manageable on his own.

The flayer dungeon was cleared out handily, and the brain was tossed into the stash, along with the eye. The only real tense moments along the way were a couple instances where BO would run out mid-fight. The most notable one was when BO ran out right when we got the inferno treatment from a flayer shaman, which dropped us down to 30 health! :eek: I suppose we need to start being a bit more careful, with characters that feel as strong and tough as Gort does it's easy to lose sight of their vulnerabilities.

We hit lvl 30 somewhere in the Flayer Jungle which gave us access to both Natural Resists and War Cry. Things instantly got much safer, especially with mobs as we could now stun them (albeit for only a short while). We finished the Flayer Jungle, and found Stormtree.


.
He and his pack were quite easy, as we were able to use the bridge to keep from getting overwhelmed. It's always fun using the monsters' size against them in situations like this. :)

After a quick clear of LK, Gort went back and cleared out the Great Marsh before deciding to call it quits for now.

finds:
- Steelgoad (Spider Forest) - vendored
- Nokozan Relic (Flayer Jungle) - kept for potential future use once someone moves up to the last tier
- Bloodthief (Swampy Pit 1) - vendored, much to Chalan's dismay

--

Gort the Conc. Barbarian with Chalan the Defiance Guard - lvl 31, Kurast Bazaar

Tao the (one day) Hydra Sorceress with Hazade the Prayer Guard - lvl 28, Kurast Docks

Sheela the TS/DTail Assassin with Gaile the Cold Rogue - lvl 24, Lost City
 

Southpaw8668

Diabloii.Net Member
My starting trifecta will be:

Heinz the LoM with fire Rogue Ryann, Level 17, Black Marsh, 1st Tier

Nadya the CL/Hydra, Level 1, Rogue Encampment, 1st Tier

Nastya the TS or PS/DT (haven’t decided yet), Level 1, Rogue Encampment, 1st Tier
 

Southpaw8668

Diabloii.Net Member
Heinz has made it to act two after slaying Andy fairly easy with all of his mages, Gumby and the fire rogue with her three ruby socketed hunter's bow.

Nastya headed out of the Rogues' camp and made her way to Blood Raven to stop for the night. She's going the PS/normal attack route until some good talons are found.

No progress made yet with Nadya.
 

Pb_pal

Diabloii.Net Member
Sheela

Sheela set off to finish up the rest of Act II and join her friends in Kurast. She is super sturdy, and very strong at this stage as well so the gameplay is quite safe and straightforward. Sine Tao and Gort are focusing on keeping their MF at respectable levels, Sheela is free to go for the best equipment she can get in her current tier (tier 2 - rares). All resistances are either maxed or in their mid-high 60s, and she has enough ml/ll to keep her bulbs full at almost all times.

She cleared the lost City, and made short work of the CVT. Fangskin and his crew didn't stand a chance, and before she knew it she was facing the false tombs. Kaa's tomb was first, and when we found him he didn't manage to put up much of a fight. He did manage to kill the Shadow once though, so we'll give him credit where credit's due. :p The rest of the tombs were easy, as CoS keeps everything under wraps while DTail just melts through everything.

Duriel was the toughest part of the session by far.


.
He killed the Shadow almost instantly every time we summoned her, so we gave up on her after a while. With care, and some help from Gaile's ctc Amp bow, we killed him without too much trouble. He dropped nothing of any value for anyone, and so Sheela hopped the boat with meshif and joined her friends in Act III.


finds:
- Gorefoot (Harem 2) - sold, just like the first.
- Nokozan Relic (Harem 2) - kept this for later use.
- Ravenclaw (False Tomb 3) - Gaile was super pissed at us, but we sold this one off too
- Cleglaw's Sword (False Tomb 4) - vendored

--

Gort

Gort decided it was time to stop fooling around and clear out those temples he had heard so much about underneath the Kurast Cities.

He wasn't so sure what all the fuss was about, as none of the temples had stair traps or even really anything of difficulty at all, including Sarina's. The only anomaly happened in the Ruined Fane. There were literally NO monsters in there. None. I've had it before in this specific temple (Ruined Fane) that there have only been say 4-5 regular monsters, or a single champ pack, but never ZERO monsters! What is it with this place? Here's a screenie of the layout, in case anyone has had this happen before they can compare.


.
So after being a bit rattled by that, Gort moved up through the Travincal and disposed of the Council without issue, before hacking his way through the Durance. Meph himself provided very little resistance for the duo, but at least left some armourupgrades for Sheela and Gaile. Better than nothing!

finds:
- Iratha's belt and Civerb's Cudge (both in the sewers) - both sold

--

Tao

After catching up with Sheela, and admiring some of the yellow-coloured gear that she had assembled (she preferred her blues of course), Tao ventured out into the jungles. Hydra was so close that she could taste it, so Tao had a bit of extra pep in her step for this session.

She flew through the Spider Forest, and quickly roasted Sszark and his crew. Not to be outdone by Gort's weird map anomaly in the Ruined Fane, Tao got one of her own! The Spider Forest Wp was in a secluded little bulb, cut off from the rest of the SF and accessible only through the Great Marsh.


.
I've heard of maps having this feature before, but have never seen it myself until now. Cool!

While going after the brain, Tao finally got the ding she had been waiting for and could put her first point into Hydra. This is my first time using Hydra seriously, and I quite enjooy it so far. I''m surprised at how powerful it is right off the bat, although I'm sure that's due mostly to already having an almost-maxed synergy in Fireball. Gameplay has setted down a bit, and the status quo is now to scout with Hydra, and freeze any mobs with Glacial Spike (we keep it on left-click) so that Hazade doesn't get overwhelmed. It doesn't kill as fast as fireball did, but it's way more fun!

Stormtree's group was frozen while crossing a bridge, and the group quickly succumbed to Hydra's onslaught. The temples were done easily, and Hydra is steadily gaining power. The Council was given a taste of it's own medicine, and the Durance was successfully cleared as well.

[url=http://i.imgur.com/Is99riP.jpg]Meph must have still been tired out from fighting Gort, as he posed no threat whatsoever. The poor guy's confidence is probably completely shot. His drop did nothing but tease us with a weapon upgrade for Sheela (they were both terrible), and Gaile can't equip Stag Bows.


finds:
- Skewer of Krinitz (Great Marsh) - vendored, as we are already saving one for potential future use for Sheela

--

Gort the Conc. Barbarian with Chalan the Defiance Guard - Tier 1 - lvl 32, Pandemonium Fortress

Tao the Hydra Sorceress with Hazade the Prayer Guard - Tier 1 - lvl 32, Pandemonium Fortress

Sheela the TS/DTail Assassin with Gaile the Cold Rogue - Tier 2 - lvl 28, Kurast Docks[/URL]
 

Pb_pal

Diabloii.Net Member
Tao

Hydra continues to cut through everything with ease as Tao works her way through the wastelands of the underworld. She also uses glacial spike to keep her safe from mobs, while Hazade is on tanking and cleanup duties. Tao still has to guzzle a significant amount of blue stuff, but it's not too much of an inconvenience at this stage. Izual was no match for her Hydras, and with Static he didn't last very long either. Through the RoF we went, collecting a Ral from the HF, and cruising our way through the Chaos Sanctuary. The Seals went well, and were overall pretty easily cleared aside from the Infector scoring a single kill on Hazade.

Diablo himself was interesting. And by interesting, I mean terrifying. This pretty much sums it up:


.
Hazade died instantly every time we raised him, so we kept him around long enough to Static big D down to about 1/3 health and then sprinted/teleported in circles throwing up hydras whenever we could and just hoping he didn't tag us with the hose. Eventually though, he did drop, leaving us a belt upgrade for Sheela, but nothing else. So Tao is now waiting in the fortress for Sheela to show up before heading off to visit Harrogath.

finds:
- Rogue's Bow - sold

--

Sheela

Speaking of which, Sheela was the next to head out. It's pretty standard fare for Sheela at this stage, melting Sszark before he even know what hit him. After a couple body parts were collected, and Stormtree was killed, it was time to venture into the temples.

Most of the temples didn't give her any trouble. CoS pretty much nullifies any threats in there. Sarina's pack was taken safely in a small corridor and we were cruising well until we hit the Disused Reliquary where this lovely lady was waiting:


.
Her HF aura meant that Sheela's speed (one of her big assets) was useless. We had to use CoS the temple wall to protect ourselves while we slowly took them out one by one.

Other than that, smooth sailing all the way to Meph, who never moved from that spot during the fight, and left us nothing noteworthy.

finds:
- Hawkmail - nice! We'll hang on to this.
- Arctic Gloves -sold

--

Gort

Gort also made his way out into Act 4. Gameplay is pretty straightforward for Gort right now; War Cry groups and hack away until dead. Rinse, repeat. Izual took some time, but was otherwise harmless, and Gort moved his way up to the River of Flame.

Hephasto gave us our first real challenge of the session. He had Conviction and was surrounded by finger mages, which is a seriously dangerous situation for Gort as his resistances aren't exactly fantastic. With Howl and War Cry, we managed to get him alone, which took all the danger away. After scoring a Tal from the forge, Gort made his way to the CS.
OK's gave him some trouble, and we had to be especially wary of their curses. Slowly and steadily we made it through, and we even managed to boost our resistances a bit in the process. We had been nervous of the fight with Diablo for quite some time. Gort's LR is now maxed, and his FR is 59, but with no CB or OW, we knew this would be a long fight and anything could happen. Turns out he wasn't so bad after all. Chalan couldn't stay on his feet, and we even got prisoned once on the way back from a TP (on swing with his axe was all it took to break it), but we slowly chipped away at the big guy until he ultimately fell.


.
We kept the boots (Sigon's), sold off the rest, and travelled with Tao to Harrogath to spend some time with Gort's family.

finds:
- Snakecord - sold
- Vidala's Bow - sold, which Gaile was a little miffed about

--

Gort the Conc. Barbarian with Chalan the Defiance Guard - Tier 1 - lvl 35, Harrogath

Tao the Hydra Sorceress with Hazade the Prayer Guard - Tier 1 - lvl 35, Harrogath

Sheela the TS/DTail Assassin with Gaile the Cold Rogue - Tier 2 - lvl 32, Pandemonium Fortress
 

Pb_pal

Diabloii.Net Member
Gort

After catching up with some old friends in town, Gort left Harrogath out into the familiar cold of his childhood. He easily cleared his way through the bloody foothills, killing Shenk handily in the process. He cleared all the way up to the Crystalline Passage, including the underground areas, and then I threw a giant wrench into his plans.

We were doing some tinkering with everybody's stashes as everyone is pretty jammed up right now, when I got the bright idea to get rid of Gort's weapon switch and store a shield we were saving for Sheela there in the meantime to alleviate some space. Of course the SECOND I placed it onto Gort's switch I realized what I had done. Sheela is in Tier 2, as was the shield I was saving for her. I had just accidentally vaulted Gort into Tier 2 as well.

The problem with this is that, due to the aforementioned space restrictions, I'm not holding on to much extra rare equipment right now (all the good stuff is going right to Sheela). The biggest problem is that I have no rare weapons for either Gort or Chalan. Okay, time to change the game plan!

Gort will take a bit of a break here and Tao/Sheela will try to fill the rest of Gort and Chalan's equipment up, hopefully finding a halfway decent rare weapon for the both of them along the way. If no good weapons show up, then we'll just push Gort through to Tier 3 once we complete his set of rares. We don't really have many set pieces lined up either, but we at leasy can go heavy on crafting, which could be cool anyways. Hmm, I'll have to think about that one.

--

Tao

So now that I had effectively crippled Gort, Tao went off in search of some rare equipment to complete a set for him.

Shenk was melted away in no time, and Tao continued on. As Hydra grows in power, her journey speeds up and she tore her way through the Cyrtslline Passage in record time. We filled a 3-soc shield with PDiamonds, maxing out her resistances. Hazade also got to upgrade his savage poleaxe to a savage partizan we had been carrying around, giving him a big boost to killing speed as well. The duo are becoming a real force to be reckoned with, even in full MF gear. Don't let her firepower fool you though, she has the skills to kill with saftey and finesse as well.

After saving Anya, we decided to head right down into Nilly's temple and get rid of the old bugger. Along the way we found a Spirit Shroud, which we will certainly hold on to. This is the first item we've seen that has tempted Tao to move up through the ranks, but for now she's content to stay with her magical equipment. Nihlathak himself was extremely easy, and the only screenie I managed to snag was of him valiantly running for his life.

Onwards Tao went, and we decided to do the Ancients at /p8 just for fun. It was still a cakewalk. First came Korlic and Talic, both of which succumbed to the Hydras. Their brother suffered the same fate. We didn't even bother using Static on any of them, just to give you an idea of how effectively Hydra can kill in a concentrated manner like these.

The WSK and Throne room fell quickly and easily, as did waves 1 and 2 of Baal's minions. Wave 3 did provide us with some nice fireworks, though.


.
Wave 4 took a little longer, but was never a threat as glacial spike kept them in place. Wave 5 gave us our first real challenge of the act. We had to seperate them into groups of 1-2 and TK them so they didn't overwhelm Hazade. They also have 50% fire resistance in normal, so our Hydras took longer to kill them. Eventually we took out his minions, and then Lister himself was plastered to the wall.

The Baal fight was trivial with Static and Hydra, as was his drop. Here is a shot of Tao's LCS upon completing normal difficulty. We had one last thing to do, go have a BBQ! The cows melted like butter, with their King being no exception. The only notable thing was that the king spawned literally right beside the portal.


.
And with that, Tao completed normal, and is awaiting Sheela's arrival in Harrogath before continuing on.

other finds:
- Jade Tan Do kept for Sheela's potential use later
- Razortine we're hanging on to this for now, but space issues might see it sold later on.

--

Sheela

Sheela began her journey towards Diablo's lair, heading down through the Plains of Despair and confronting Izual. He took some time for the trio to kill, breaking Sheela's weapon once about 2/3 of the way through the fight. The three ladies continued tearing their way up to and including the River of Flame. We're going to need a better weapon for Gaile soon, but Sheela more than makes up for her lack of firepower right now. The HF dropped us an Eth.

Ample use of CoS and Mindblast in the Chaos Sanctuary kept us pretty safe from OKs, but there were still a few tense moments if we got amped or decrepped in mid fight. The seals were jokes, and all of a sudden Sheela was staring down the Lord of Terror himself.


.
He wasn't bad, actually. Maxed resists (without fade, even) meant that Sheela could stand to tank him a bit and take some of his hits. His fire attacks did nothing to her, but the hose was still scary. Luckily, BoS kept her well ahead of it at all times. Diablo managed to kill the shadow a pile of times, but Gaile and Sheela both came through unscathed. At least his drop scored us a polearm for Chalan, even if it was pathetically weak.

--

Addendum on Gort

In the interest of saving space (and increasing the style factor), Gort has used 11 of his ring gambles to net himself a 2nd rare ring, which completes his gear set in tier 2. He promtly equipped Sigons boots and cathans rings and moved up into Tier 3! This will make sure that all our good rares we find will go to Sheela and Gaile, instead of having to spread them between 2 chars and 2 mercs. We have no more set items saved, so Gort will fill his remaining gear (and Chalan's) with crafted items. Since at clvl 51 there's an 80% chance of 3 affixes and a 20% chance of 4 affixes, we will push Tao through to 51 (which should happen by the time she hits the Outer Cloister), and outfit Gort at that point.

--

Gort the Conc. Barbarian with Chalan the Defiance Guard - Tier 3 - lvl 40, Crystalline Passage

Destroyer Tao the Hydra Sorceress with Hazade the Prayer Guard - Tier 1 - lvl 48, NM Rogue Encampment

Sheela the TS/DTail Assassin with Gaile the Cold Rogue - Tier 2 - lvl 35, Harrogath
 
Last edited:

Pb_pal

Diabloii.Net Member
@Southpaw8668 - It definitely puts an interesting dynamic on playing the characters. My 3 stashes and the two inventories of the characters I'm not currently playing have basically been completely full since act 2 normal. :p Lots to think about, but it's super interesting as well.
 

Pb_pal

Diabloii.Net Member
Tao

Tao has ventured out into NM. Hydra is still killing well, although boss packs have become slightly tougher and more dangerous for Hazade. Not a ton to say about her adventures as killing is still very smooth, and I lost the screenshots from this session due to a corrupted drive.

Countess dropped a Hel rune, and she cleared her way to the Outer Cloister, and more importantly to level 51! She was going to clear the Pits too, but Gort has been hounding her for all this gear she's been promising, so that will have to wait.

PGems were the limiting factor on what we could craft, but we just wanted to get some gear on him and get him moving again. Let the crafting begin!

other finds:
- Sigon's Shield (Onto Gort's switch for buffing)
- Goldwrap (kept in case Tao ever rises to the final Tier)

--

Gort

So after Tao went to town, Gort was finally able to get outfitted! As I mentioned before, Pgems limited what we could craft, but here is what crafts the duo is wearing now (with remaining holes filled with set pieces for now):

Gort:
Blood Helm, Axe, Gloves, and Amulet
Hitpower Armour

Chalan:
Safety Spear
Blood Helm
Hitpower Armour

here's a dump for those who want to see the stats on everything, although my favourites are his helm and axe. Decent haul so far, I'm more than happy with it, and we will continue to craft as we go to improve his weak spots.

24: Cathan's Seal
Ring
Required Level: 11
Item Version: 1.10+ Expansion
Item Level: 30
Fingerprint: 0xdfe09fcf
Damage Reduced by 2
6% Life stolen per hit

***Partial Set Item Bonuses***
+10 to Strength
***Partial Set Item Bonuses***


25: Raven Grasp
Heavy Gloves
Defense: 6
Durability: 14 of 14
Required Level: 44
Item Version: 1.10+ Expansion
Item Level: 53
Fingerprint: 0x408c4785
+4 to Strength
+11 to Life
3% Life stolen per hit
67% Extra Gold from Monsters
5% Chance of Crushing Blow
Repairs 1 durability in 33 seconds


26: Death Visage
Helm
Defense: 24
Durability: 24 of 24
Required Strength: 26
Required Level: 28
Item Version: 1.10+ Expansion
Item Level: 53
Fingerprint: 0xa14b3a88
+10 to Life
+29% Enhanced Defense
Lightning Resist +19%
Cold Resist +14%
2% Life stolen per hit
5% Deadly Strike


27: Order Collar
Amulet
Required Level: 34
Item Version: 1.10+ Expansion
Item Level: 48
Fingerprint: 0x69e35963
+18 to Life
+17 to Attack Rating
+1 to Maximum Damage
Cold Resist +19%
2% Life stolen per hit
57% Extra Gold from Monsters
9% Faster Run/Walk


33: Storm Pelt
Field Plate
Defense: 189
Durability: 48 of 48
Required Strength: 55
Required Level: 45
Item Version: 1.10+ Expansion
Item Level: 47
Fingerprint: 0x83c88414
+79% Enhanced Defense
Magic Damage Reduced by 2
Fire Resist +24%
Attacker Takes Damage of 7
12% Faster Hit Recovery
5% Chance to cast Level 4 Frost Nova when struck
Repairs 1 durability in 33 seconds


36: Sigon's Wrap
Plated Belt
Defense: 107
Durability: 24 of 24
Required Strength: 60
Required Level: 6
Item Version: 1.10+ Expansion
Item Level: 36
Fingerprint: 0x562c3db8
+20 to Life
Fire Resist +20%

***Partial Set Item Bonuses***
+96 to Defense (Based on Character Level)
***Partial Set Item Bonuses***


39: Angelic Halo
Ring
Required Level: 12
Item Version: 1.10+ Expansion
Item Level: 46
Fingerprint: 0x65ff6af1
+20 to Life
Replenish Life +6

***Partial Set Item Bonuses***
+576 to Attack Rating (Based on Character Level)
50% Better Chance of Getting Magic Items
***Partial Set Item Bonuses***


91: Sigon's Sabot
Greaves
Defense: 13
Durability: 24 of 24
Required Strength: 70
Required Level: 6
Item Version: 1.10+ Expansion
Item Level: 40
Fingerprint: 0x27b8dec1
Cold Resist +40%
20% Faster Run/Walk

***Partial Set Item Bonuses***
+50 to Attack Rating
50% Better Chance of Getting Magic Items
***Partial Set Item Bonuses***


93: Bone Bite
Giant Axe
Two-Hand Damage: 41 to 100
Durability: 50 of 50
Required Strength: 70
Required Level: 40
Axe Class - Normal Attack Speed
Item Version: 1.10+ Expansion
Item Level: 47
Fingerprint: 0xe8a6e7d
+14 to Life
+90% Enhanced Damage
+58 to Attack Rating
+15 to Maximum Damage
3% Life stolen per hit
10% Increased Attack Speed
80% Damage to Undead
+77 to Attack Rating against Undead


Mercenary Items :

1: Doom Coat
Field Plate
Defense: 102
Durability: 48 of 48
Required Strength: 55
Required Level: 41
Item Version: 1.10+ Expansion
Item Level: 47
Fingerprint: 0x212bc015
Damage Reduced by 2
Attacker Takes Damage of 7
20% Faster Hit Recovery
5% Chance to cast Level 4 Frost Nova when struck
14% Chance to cast Level 5 Charged Bolt when struck
Repairs 1 durability in 20 seconds
Socketed (1: 0 used)

2: Hailstone Horn
Helm
Defense: 26
Durability: 15 of 24
Required Strength: 26
Required Level: 33
Item Version: 1.10+ Expansion
Item Level: 53
Fingerprint: 0xda8281c5
+14 to Life
+42% Enhanced Defense
1% Life stolen per hit
8% Deadly Strike
10% Chance to cast Level 3 Nova when struck
Socketed (1: 0 used)

3: Skull Lance
Pike
Two-Hand Damage: 19 to 85
Durability: 19 of 25
Required Dexterity: 45
Required Strength: 60
Required Level: 30
Spear Class - Slow Attack Speed
Item Version: 1.10+ Expansion
Item Level: 47
Fingerprint: 0xa100f8a5
+10% Enhanced Defense
+36% Enhanced Damage
Damage Reduced by 2
Magic Damage Reduced by 2
+21 poison damage over 4 seconds
Knockback

Okay, so now that he was geared (well, the astute observer will notice that his gloves and armour both had lvl requirements higher than his current level of 40, so technically he set out without these two pieces) , it was time to pick up where he left off! His new gear is performing well, the only problem being that we no longer have any mana steal, so we have to take blue pots with us to keep our war cries going, but that's not a huge deal.

So Gort resumed his journey in the Crystalline Passage, saving Anya and clearing all the way up to the Anceint's Way before heading down to take on Nihlathak. By now, we was high enough level to use his gloves/armour, so things got very easy. Maxed resistances, and WAY more than enough life leech (26% with the Sigon's bonus!), coupled with Chalan's defiance aura have made him very sturdy.

The Ancients were easy, as were the WSK levels. The throne was promtply cleared, and it was time to take on the waves. Wave 1 fell super quickly. Wave 2 the skellies were taunted out of the room, followed by the Unraveller minions, and then Achmel was whacked. Waves 3 and 4 followed this same treatment and promptly fell. Lister's group was a bit harder to seperate, as Taunt does not affect them. Eventually though we got them seperated in the hallways below the Throne, and even let Lister pin Gort up against the wall for fun while we took him out.

The Baal fight was fun, although not too dangerous. he immediately spawned his clone, but we had him in a favourable position where the close was trying to mana burn Gort, although he couldn't quite reach:


.
This allowed Chalan to take the clone out while Gort picked away at Baal. Eventually the clone fell and Chalan came to help finish off the big man himself.

As I said, extremely safe so far. Concentrate is maxed now, so we will work on BO for the time being and maybe throw a few extra points into War Cry for the stun duration. Here is a shot of his LCS after beating Baal, for those curious. Gort is going to wait to do cows and remain in Harrogath so that we have some more shopping options for crafting bases while the other two ladies progress.

--

Sheela

Sheela is one of those characters that is great fun to play, but pretty boring to write about. Gameplay is extremely safe and fast, and she has been cruising through Act V without trouble. Some slight gear changes, as Gaile has received an upgrade to her weapon and is now actually contributing a bit with killing (not that it's needed..). We also upped Sheela's boots to exceptional, which more than doubled her already huge damage output.

TS is maxed, and DTail is on its way, so she cruised right up to Frozenstein , quickly dispatched him, and saved Anya. We cleared the Glacial Trail before heading down and killing Nilly for the last time in Normal, before moving on up to the Ancients, who were also taken down easily.

The WSK and throne fell, as did the waves of Baal's minions. Lister was kick-locked into a corner, just to make sure he didn't try anything funny.


.
The Baal fight was actually a bit tough. he cloned himself right away, but a TP out fixed that for us. The rest of the fight took place on his bridge. He killed the Shadow many many times, and his hoarfrost attack gave Sheela a bit of trouble, but ultimately the trio of ladies prevailed. So there we have it, our third and final group member made it to Destroyer.


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After a quick clear of the cows, Sheela hopped up to NM to hang out with Tao a bit before continuing on.

--

Destroyer Gort the Conc. Barbarian with Chalan the Defiance Guard - Tier 3 - lvl 48, Cows Next

Destroyer Tao the Hydra Sorceress with Hazade the Prayer Guard - Tier 1 - lvl 51, NM Pits

Destroyer Sheela the TS/DTail Assassin with Gaile the Cold Rogue - Tier 2 - lvl 48, NM Rogue Encampment
 

Pb_pal

Diabloii.Net Member
Tao

Tao picked up from the Outer Cloister and tore her way through the rest of Act 1 really easily. At this stage Hydra is just stupidly powerful, so nothing gave her any resistance. Once we made it down to Andy, Hazade des almost instantly, despite buffing with antidotes. Tao ran Andy in circles for a few minutes while laying down Hydras, and was eventually successful.

So here she awaits for Gort to arrive before departing for Lut Gholein. More on her later.

finds:
- The Impaler (sold due to space restrictions)

--

Sheela

First things first, we upgraded Gaile's bow to a Gothic Bow, which actually enables her to kill some monsters before Sheela wipes them all out. Things have finally started to get a bit dangerous for Sheela now, and she has been using CoS and MB more and more as she progresses. We still have maxed resistances without Fade, but she's starting to feel squishy.

Progress is still quite quick though, and she moved her way through the wilderness easily, kick-locking Blood Raven into a bush and moving on. One highlight of the act though was this awesome amulet she found, which will make Tao quite happy indeed.

We got quite a nice greeting in the Pits level 2:


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Note the archer boss who is quickly making her way to join the fun as well. She was Stone Skin and Extra Fast. That is NOT a fun combination of mods to deal with for Sheela, especially when under Fanatacism from the other boss, and with such limited space. Through lots of CoS, MB, and Shadow re-casts (along with a few emergency juvies!), we did eventually clear the level out.

Andariel was given the reverse-portal-park, as per usual. As you can see, Gaile didn't make it, but Sheela and the shadow had no trouble finishing her off.

finds:
- Manald Heal (kept for now)
- our 2nd Spirit Shroud (we had to sell it for space, but we wouldn't need two anyways)

--

Gort

Since the ladies were hounding Gort to catch up, he decided to do a quick clear of the cows and officially join them in NM.

With some crafting done by Tao and Sheela along the way, Gort now has some mana leech and is no longer dependant on the blue stuff. Gort is an absolute juggernaut right now, to put it simply. High defense from Concentrate, Shout and Chalan's Defiance make sure that things hardly ever hit the duo. Add in a huge life-pool, high leech, and War Cry to stun everything and they are near-untouchable right now. The killing is a bit slow, but that is to be expected with a single-target attack.

They smashed their way through, killing Blood Raven, saving Cain, killing the Countess and even having a run-in with everybody's favourite reincarnating boss Black Hack before hitting the Outer Cloister and level 51. This means that all 3 characters can now craft freely, which alleviates a huge headache of always swapping ingredients around.

Gort took this opportunity to do a pile of crafting, since he wanted to actually make some of his own equipment for once, instead of only using gifts from his lady-friends. He is proud to say that he and Chalan are now both completely outfitted solely in crafting gear, which he thinkgs is pretty cool. We also upgraded Chalan's Pike to a pretty decent Yari:


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It has more damage, ctc amp, and a WSM of 0 (vs 20 for the pike, yuck!), so that should up his killing power quite dramatically.

The rest of the act was uneventful. Pitspawn was smoked, and Andy herself didn't even pose much of a threat, even with Chalan dying 1/4 way through the fight. Gort has CB from his gloves, and OW from his belt, so that helped to emerge victorious.

Finally the girls could stop bugging him, and the trio took the trip to Lut Gholein together.

finds:
- Chance Guards (39%!) (we kept these in case Tao ever leaves Tier 1)

--

Tao (again)

Not content to just sit around talking, Tao left the comfort of Lut Gholein.

First though, she switched out her merc for Waheed, who sports a nice HF aura. His aura should help Tao's Hydras have a better chance of scoring more hits, so we feel he compliments the team well. We will miss Hazade's old Prayer aura, but it's nothing some healing pots can't fix.

She met her first innate-FIs in the sewers (Burning mages), but Waheed had no trouble killing them, and the dup quickly made their way to Radament, and promptly turned him to a pile of ash.

Not much to say from this act, really. Waheed is performing well, and once his level caught up and he grew out of his squishy phase, things were very straightforward. One thing I love about sorcs is their ability to easily gain tactical advantage over Fnagskin:


.
Before we knew it, we had cleared all the false tombs, killed Kaa, and were staring down the True Tomb. It went smoothly as well, with only this FI Ghoul boss giving us a bit of a headache. The big bug himself fell quickly and harmlessly to Tao's Hydras


.
He left us a couple gems to cube, but nothing else noteworthy.

finds:
- Heart Carver (kept, just in case)
- Nat's boots (kept, although I think Gort is going to stick with crafts only from here on out)
- Ko rune
- Goblin Toe (we're going to keep them for a bit, but I doubt they'll ever get used)

--

Destroyer Gort the Conc. Barbarian with Chalan the Defiance Guard - Tier 3 - lvl 53, NM Lut Gholein

Destroyer Tao the Hydra Sorceress with Waheed the Holy Freeze Guard - Tier 1 - lvl 60, NM Kurast Docks

Destroyer Sheela the TS/DTail Assassin with Gaile the Cold Rogue - Tier 2 - lvl 52, NM Lut Gholein
 
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