The Passive Aggressive Tournament

thefranklin

Diabloii.Net Member
Franklin, consider a wand withe life tap charges on swap. You could have another wand with terror charges to switch in too - that's how Vladimir was so successful in the skillless tournament. Terror saved my life dozens of times, and life tap was absolutely needed in later nightmare and hell.
Yeah, good advice! I just saved a lifetap wand. Probably should keep it on for act 2.

@Pb_pal
Nice progress! Blizz has said it is not a bug, but they don't know what they are talking about. When next delay can ramp the damage up to infinite proportions, it is a bug! If you don't move, you can still take massive damage if the merc/valk would walk into your space.
 

Pyrotechnician

Diabloii.Net Site Pal
This was new to me. Hm, better keep the distance to them as well.
If I recall correctly it has something to do with the collision check in some form or another, so it "bounces" between your character and your merc/summon/pet/etc. the famous onderduiker did a fairly lengthy post about why this is and how it works, but I'm still pretty sketchy on the details without finding the post by him again.
 

Pb_pal

Diabloii.Net Member
Found a post (I think the one Pyro is talking about) from onderduiker in this thread that I think explains pretty much everything, including why you should stay away from your merc/minions when confronting them. Very interesting stuff here. The rest of the thread is a great read too.

Re: nihlathak viper problem

Due to a bug the clouds play the same sound as a javelin upon collision, so a quick succession of collisions sounds like a machine gun.

The Tomb Viper's A1 attack has a missile assigned to it (viper_poisjav in Missiles.txt) and this attack applies both physical and poison damage, 100% of which is applied by this javelin on collision. Since the javelin is destroyed on impact, this damage is only applied once.

However, this javelin can release up to 14 clouds in its wake (viper_poisjavcloud in Missiles.txt), each of which applies 100% of the javelin's damage. This means that they apply the A1 attack's physical and poison damage on collision too: although these clouds aren't destroyed on impact and they linger, Last Collide is enabled, which normally prevents a missile from colliding with its last target and thus applying its damage or effects again.

There are two circumstances in which the physical and poison damage of the clouds can be applied multiple times in quick succession. The first is when you move and collide with multiple clouds: since Tomb Vipers spawn in groups of 2-3, a single salvo of 2-3 javelins can generate up to 28-42 clouds and moving through them can thus result in damage being applied up to 28-42 times. The second is when two targets are overlapping or standing close enough together to collide with the same cloud(s): since enabling Last Collide only prevents a missile from colliding with its last target, each cloud collides with the targets alternately and thus applies its damage every other frame (averaging 12.5 times per second).

Obviously players have complained about this, but unfortunately these complaints met with the following post on the Battle.net forums (which is long gone, but quoted at the end of the third post of the Things you SHOULD know about Diablo 2 thread stuck at the top of Battle.net's Diablo II Gameplay Discussion Forum):


Based on what's already been described, that's probably true from a coding perspective: apart from everything else, viper_poisjavcloud is the only missile which uses the SrcMissDam column in Missiles.txt (this is what makes it apply the javelin's damage), suggesting this column may have been inserted for this specific case. Last Collide probably works as intended, since otherwise information would have to be stored of every single target hit by every single missile for which it was enabled.

However, there is one way in which the clouds are almost certainly bugged (or at least not working as intended, unless Blizzard are evil): they're only supposed to last for 2.4 seconds (60 frames). While they do so visibly, they last for at least another 4.8 seconds (120 frames) invisibly.

To avoid multiple collisions and thus multiple applications of damage a player should stand still, away from any other targets and not move for at least five seconds after the clouds have apparently disappeared. Note that Teleporting with a mercenary or pet(s) won't necessarily keep you safe: if a Sorceress teleports into a cloud with a mercenary, the cloud will still collide alternately with both of them... and if she teleports into multiple clouds...

Tomb Viper AI can also be altered to prevent them from firing their javelins in the first place: casting Dim Vision at the edge of the screen is probably the surest means of doing so, although casting pets within their mêlée range or casting Cloak of Shadows or Mind Blast, Howl, Taunt, Grim Ward, Terror, Confuse or Attract at range are other possibilities.

Another possibility is negating the damage so that it doesn't matter how many collisions there are. Since poison damage is designed to be applied every frame, the damage which is applied by each collision is negligible: at worst, when a cloud's Last Collide is overridden extra frames of poison damage will be applied every other frame, increasing the rate of damage by 50% and resetting the length for which that rate is applied. Furthermore, when Last Collide is overridden each additional cloud should increase the rate of damage by 50%: two clouds will double the rate (+100%), four clouds will triple it (+200%), and so on.

The danger comes from multiple applications of the modest physical damage, which increases by 6.25% with every additional player in Ladder and single-player games in Nightmare and Hell, can be increased by +% Damage and doubled by a critical hit (although these only occur on 5% of collisions). On the flip side, cloud collisions can be blocked and an Assassin's Weapon Block and an Amazon's Avoid and Evade are effective.

No random Champion or Unique Tomb Vipers spawn in the Halls of Vaught, so the only ones you'll find are those that spawn from Evil Urns or in set locations at the end of the halls: if you know how to find Nihlathak, then you never need to encounter them (and it's certainly worth avoiding Champions, or Extra Strong Tomb Vipers that spawn Aura Enchanted and Cursed... and damage of other types can also be added by elemental enchantments). However, Nihlathak himself can be enchanted with Might (level 12 applying +150% Damage in Nightmare, level 15 applying +180% Damage in Hell) or Fanaticism (level 9 applying +93% Damage in Nightmare, level 11 applying +110% Damage in Hell). Below is the physical damage the javelin and clouds will apply under various conditions, rounded up to the nearest point when +% Damage is applied:

Nightmare
Code:
TOMB VIPER      PLAYERS
                1        2        3        4        5        6        7        8
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Normal           23- 31   24- 32   25- 34   27- 36   28- 38   30- 40   31- 42   33- 44
+ 9 Fanaticism   45- 60   47- 62   49- 66   53- 70   55- 74   58- 78   60- 82   64- 85
+12 Might        58- 78   60- 80   63- 85   68- 90   70- 95   75-100   78-105   83-110
Since integer damage reduction is applied before percentage damage reduction (also known as Damage Resist %), if you're cursed with Amplify Damage (DR -100%) this isn't really an issue when no +% Damage is applied if you're equipping DR >43 in an eight-player game (although the occasional critical hit will hurt more unless you're equipping DR >87).

The bright side of +% Damage applying to cloud damage is that -% Damage also does so: casting Weaken (-33%), Decrepify (-50%), Battle Cry (-(24+(1*slvl))%) or Taunt (-(3+(2*slvl))%) will decrease physical damage, although the impact will be much less significant when +% Damage is also being applied.

Hell
Code:
TOMB VIPER      PLAYERS
                1        2        3        4        5        6        7        8
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Normal           42- 56   44- 59   47- 63   49- 66   52- 70   55- 73   57- 77   60- 80
+11 Fanaticism   89-118   93-124   99-133  103-139  110-147  116-154  120-162  126-168
+15 Might       118-157  124-166  132-177  138-185  146-196  154-205  160-216  168-224
Nihlathak can spawn Cursed and Aura Enchanted in Hell, so if you're not careful Tomb Viper clouds can still be dangerous even when copious quantities of -% Damage, DR and even DR % are applied.

Note that Tomb Vipers spawn in the Halls of Vaught 13/27 or ~48% of the time, so saving and exiting to respawn when running Nihlathak for Keys of Destruction is going to be tedious.


Still not sure why my valk was able to tank so well, as onerduiker confirms what kestegs was saying about the poison and physical being independant. She must have had some seriously high integer PDR, or maybe she just never moved in a cloud. Maybe both.
 
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kestegs

D3 Monk Moderator
WallE has slain Mephisto and is ready to head through the short act 4. Nothing too difficult in the rest of act 3 really. Got a nice double drop from Brem and minions. Too bad it was just tancred's amulet.

Meph got agro'd early due to me spamming confuse on some blood lords, so he came out to play, this ended up being a pretty safe spot where he couldn't easily hit us with his lightning. He got the merc a couple times, took a while, but my crushflange helped speed it up. Drop was okay, not too useful. Couple faileds in their, and then after I killed him I racked a failed unique assassin claw :p

I'm a little worried about the diablo fight coming up, but I'll probably just drop the players setting down a bit for him.

WallE, Necro, level 32, Pandemonium fortress
 

Bee

Diabloii.Net Member
@thefranklin don't give up, just think one good drop to make your merc more useful could turn the whole thing around.

@Pb_pal great write-up, really enjoyed reading the journey of Calabi so far.

Rocky has completed Act 2 and it was all fairly fast. Most of the damage is done by Mizan. We actually had no good rune drops, so I haven't been able to upgrade my weapon to any of the early game runewords, haven't found an eth for Malice and my current unique has better mods than Steel. I'm currently looking to upgrade both Rocky's weapon and Mizan's weapon. Rocky currently uses Knell Stricker which has nice resists and 25% CB, while Mizan currently uses Dimoak's Hew which did enough damage to get by in Act 2.

I also had on weapon switch a weapon/shield that could boast LR to 75 so that when we ran into any of the packs of Scarabs we didn't even have to adjust our playstyle and could run in to tank the hits.

We did have one NDE in one of the false tombs that would have been probably the most embarrassing death possible. I was playing and I had a basketball game on in the background, just to follow the score. Going through the tombs I really built up confidence as my life never dropped and I could basically play one handed. At one point I had finished clearing a room, so I looked up for a second to watch a play on the TV. I was probably watching TV for 5 seconds and when I looked back down Rocky was poisoned and at about 25% health and dropping quick. Had I waited another 2/3 seconds the poison probably would have had me down to 1 health. What had happened, was right around a corner there was a boss Unraveler who must have done the poison breath attack as soon as I looked up. That move is one that has no chance of killing you if you are paying attention because it moves so slow but it was very dangerous as I wasn't watching.

Anyway, by the time I made it to Duriel, I had all the confidence back and decided to do it at P8, the only slight problem was my CR was 0. So I packed up on thawing potions and basically just stood in front of him tanking the battle with my attributes screen open so that I could see when I needed to take a potion.

Duriel dropped absolutely nothing of use, so it is on to the docks for Rocky.

Rocky the Tank Barbarian, Level 28, Kurast Docks
 

bladejj

Diabloii.Net Member
So as promised, here is my full update of normal for Relic the ironmancer, who utilizes most curses, and Razan the desert guard blessed aim mercenary. Overall the character is very fun and the wide variety of curses makes for multiple approaches to situations which will come in very hardy as enemies get tougher. The curses I utilize are:
  • Dim vision - against moderately against some rangers attackers, imps, and those who summon and/or heal other.
  • Confuse - used extensively against large packs of monsters to take the heat off my mercenary and IR.
  • Decrepify - used extensively against most enemies.
  • Attract - I didn't use this skill until late in act V, but it is becoming one of my most curses. Attract cannot be overriden by other curses and it is a lot more controlled than using confuse.
  • I haven't used any of the other curses yet, but I imagine Terror might be useful in an NDE situation.
My strategy is fairly simple, cast either DV or Confuse the crowd (which typically brings more monsters) and Decrepify the monsters closest to my tanks to make killing more efficient. I opted to leave Dim Vision at level 4 (5 with +1 skills) as this allows for a more strategic use of the curse. As I will show in later screenshots, I prefer to have multiple curses active as one time as a form of crowd control and safety for my group. Now onto a quick summary of Normal.

Andariel's drop...
Screenshot008.jpg

Dim Vision made Act II a cake walk. Also, the blinding affect prevents Greater Mummies from raises skeletons.
Screenshot010.jpg

Mephiso's poor drop:
Screenshot024.jpg

Dim Vision makes easy work of gloams. I initially tried Confuse but what ensued was absolute chaos!
Screenshot024.jpg

Confuse at work, this allowed for a must easy dispatching of the Smith than usual:
Screenshot034.jpg

And now onto the fight with Diablo. As I mentioned in a previous post, this was one of the scariest and most thrilling battle in my D2 career, that is saying a lot as I have been playing off and on for over 13 years now.

I took him on at players 8 but I neglected to bring any of my crushing blow or open wounds gear. I have 85 fire resistance (thanks to a nice unique amulet) and around 60 lighting resistance. Countless golems of all varieties and may merc resurrections were needed but I finally managed to get him down to a manageable level of 10% life remaining. But this came at the expense of all my purples and 500k of my total 550k of gold.

By this time, Relic felt the need to give Diablo a piece of his mind and give him a couple wacks with his 2-10 overall damage wand. I'll let the next few screenshots speak for themselves, but it shouldn't be too difficult to piece together what happened in between the screenshots. Around 10 seconds ticked away between the following screenshots.
Screenshot041.jpg Screenshot042.jpg Screenshot043.jpg Screenshot045.jpg

Probably a stupid thing to do on my part but in the end he was defeated and dropped an Iceblink and Cathan's seal, the former being a good candidate for an Iron Golem in the future.

Here is a good example of utilities multiple curses at one time. As you can see, I have the ranged attackers under the effects of Dim Vision and am utilizing confuse on the other mob. The enemies closest to Razan get Decrepified so they are slowed, weakened, and cursed. While these situations are relatively easy in Normal, I tried to hone in on tactics that will be essential to my survival going forward.
Screenshot063.jpg

I Baal was taken down with ease and dropped an Artic Belt and and eth rune. I have one more picture of the cows but am limited to 10 imbeded pictures so I'll post that with my next update.

Current skills are the following:

Summoning - Golem Mastery (20), Iron Golem (7), 1 point in Clay Golem, Blood Golem, Summon Resist
Poison and Bone - Bone Armor (1), Bone Wall (1)
Curses - Dim Vision (4), Decrepify (3), 1 point in Amplify Damage, Attract, Weak, Terror, Confuse

Items are the the following:

Code:
Character name  : Relic
Character type  : Hardcore Necromancer
Character level : 48
Character exp  : 40993186

Strength  : 61
Energy  : 25
Dexterity  : 29
Vitality  : 200
Stat Points Rem : 5
Skill Points Rem: 0

Life  : 629 / 505
Mana  : 54 / 119
Stamina  : 318 / 311


Amror: Gemmed Superior Breast Plate - 39% Better Chance of Getting Magic Items
Ring 1: Wraith Loop Ring(+3 to Energy, Cold Resist +19%, Poison Resist +5%, 20 MF)
Ring 2:Bone Band Ring (+2 to Strength, +1 to Maximum Damage, Magic Damage Reduced by 2, Fire Resist +18%, +10 MF)
Amulet #1- Amulet of Fortune (+21% MF)
Amulet: Graverobber's Amulet (+1 to Summoning Skills)Gloves: Brimstone Clutches (+26 to AR, Lightning Resist +16%, 16%MF)
Helm: Artisan's Great Helm of Energy (+3 to Energy, +60% MF)
Belt - Plated Belt of the Colossus (+51 to Life)
Boots: Skull Tread Boots (+5 to Dexterity, Fire Resist +6%, Cold Resist +31%, +19% MF,20% FRW)
Weapson: Summoner's Bone Wand of Radiance (+1 to Necromancer Skill Levels,+1 to Iron Golem)


Charms -

Lucky Grand Charm of Greed - 39% Extra Gold from Monsters, 4% MF
Grand Charm of Sustenance - +25 to Life
Coral Large Charm of Life - +11 to Life, Lightning Resist +11%
Small Charm of Greed - 9% Extra Gold from Monsters
Bronze Large Charm of Life - +10 to Life, +8 to Attack Rating
Snake's Grand Charm of Strength - +4 to Strength, +24 to Mana
Russet Small Charm of Life - +9 to Life, Fire Resist +6%
Large Charm of Life - +12 to Life


Weapon Switch -

Carrion Slayer
Great Axe
+59% Enhanced Damage
+12 to Attack Rating
+1 to Minimum Damage
4% Life stolen per hit
Repairs 1 durability in 20 seconds
Ethereal (Cannot be Repaired)


Lizard's Large Charm of Life (+6 to Life, +5 to Mana)

In Stash:

Triumphant Ring of Telekinesis
Bone Wand - +3 to Iron Golem (Necromancer Only)
Gargoyle HeadAdds (+1 to Lower Resist, +3 to Summon Resist, Socketed (2: 0 used))


Mercenary Items :

1: Gemmed Breast Plate - 39% Better Chance of Getting Magic Items
Ethereal (Cannot be Repaired), Socketed (3: 3 used)

2: Relic's Raven Veil Circlet (I'm considering socketing this excellent gamble)
Magic Damage Reduced by 3
All Resistances +18
21% Better Chance of Getting Magic Items
+1 to Barbarian Skill Levels
+3 to Mana After Each Kill

3: Savage Partizan of the Wraith
Two-Hand Damage: 60 to 134
+79% Enhanced Damage
6% Mana stolen per hit
Currently, the iron golem is made out of a Malice Claymore, the open wounds has a huge affect. Also, the IG is not affected by the life drain. Surprisingly, he has survived for all of Act V with only 2 instances were a TP was needed to save him.

He has found a ton of S/U's and has had fairly good rune luck.

Hope you enjoyed the read. Real life tends to get in the way a lot so playing sessions are typically 1-2 hour blocks every few day to week.

Relic the Ironmancer with Razan the Blessed Aim Mercenary and a Malice IG, NM Rogue Encampment, Level 48
 
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Bee

Diabloii.Net Member
Wow @bladejj that diablo fight looked awesome. I can't believe you took screenshots during that heated action. Great job and I wish Relic the best of luck in NM.
 

thefranklin

Diabloii.Net Member
Nice @bladejj !

Just a note, the IG is re-summoned every time you re-enter a game. So for a prebuff to work, you have to log out with your prebuff gear on and rejoin.
 

bladejj

Diabloii.Net Member
Wow @bladejj that diablo fight looked awesome. I can't believe you took screenshots during that heated action. Great job and I wish Relic the best of luck in NM.
It was pretty hectic, yes, but what is a good story without pictures to allow others to share in your thrill as well! And I'll be sure to keep everyone posted as Relic continues his second third of his journey.
Nice @bladejj !

Just a note, the IG is re-summoned every time you re-enter a game. So for a prebuff to work, you have to log out with your prebuff gear on and rejoin.
Oh wow, I didn't know nor did I read that in the limited research I did about iron golem. That also explains why my golem appeared to have gotten stronger as I was pumping his skills but using the same golem. I was worried I'd have to loose my weapon in order to utilize my higher skill points. Thanks for the input and any other audio ear words of wisdom are more than welcome!
 

Dazliare

Diabloii.Net Member
RIP_Vladimir has successfully defeated Duriel at level 28. I'm hoping that our trusty rogue mercenary Abhaya will continue to be this effective throughout. She has used the same bow since act 1; a hunter's bow with ctc amp and 90% ed to undead. The CTC Amp is incredible, and the 90% ED to undead made the tombs a breeze.

The strategy thus far has been to have RIP_Vladimir tank with decoys, and have abhaya pick off targets. With 75% chance to block and 10 points in dodge and avoid, we're extremely durable. Duriel managed to land a hit perhaps 1/12 times. Valkyrie should make us even more durable.

Duriel dropped a nagelring. Nice.

Forests and the fabled ruins of Kruast await.
 

Pb_pal

Diabloii.Net Member
@Bee - Thanks! Those sports can be deadly, I almost lost Calabi to a hockey game back in normal as well. :p

@bladejj - Wow awesome update, that was a good read! That Diablo fight looks like it was terrifying, great job getting through it! Congrats on the Destroyer, I'm interested to see how the curse-using develops as you progress. Great job!

@Dazliare - The valk will indeed make you much more durable, it's a whole different game when she's around. That sounds like an awesome bow for the early game, CTC amp is an awesome mod to have, I kept any valk that spawned with it for as long as humanly possible. However, if you can keep upgrading bows that have it on them, you can maybe use the valk for other favourable mods (knockback, chilling, poison etc). Good work with the trio of ladies!

--

Calabi picked up in the Ancient's Way, ready to make her push towards Baal. The Icy Cellar provided us with a gloam bosspack (Spectral hit, Cursed) that took Kasim out a few times, but other than that it was fairly standard and Snapchip went down without issue despite being Stone Skin on top of his usual CE/Cursed. We had rolled a valk with ctc amp, so that helped alot with the increased physical resistance.

Up to the Ancients we went! I had been a little nervous for this fight for some time, as I wasn't sure if I would be able to seperate them well enough to make it manageable for Kasim as zons have a pretty terrible cast rate for teleport (she has no FCR). Couple that with the fact that I had an amp-casting valk, so I didn't want to resummon her unless absolutely necessary. We took the standard approach of placing a Decoy in front of Madawc (he is ranged, so he should run directly away from the decoy to get into his attacking range), then he hit the altar and did a couple slow teleports down towards the entrance. It worked! Only Talic and Korlic followed, and we were able to establish a good fighting position:





Korlic was Cold Enchanted and Stone Skin, with Talic being Spectral Hit and Teleport. As you can see, Talic was distracted by the decoy, so Kasim and the valk could focus their efforts on Korlic. He took a while due to being Stone Skin, but he was never a threat. Talic went down extremely quickly once his brother had been killed. We moved up to find out where Madawc had gotten to, and found him hanging out around the altar. He was Spectral Hit, FE but was not the slightest bit of a problem as we managed to get him backed into a corner quite quickly. That was much easier than expected! Granted, we got very favourable mods (and on the first roll!), and having 3 targets to distract them meant Calabi never even got targetted. Okay, let's go find that Worldstone!

WSK level 1 drew Unholy Corpses (reanimators), Vile Witches (Succubi), and Fetid Defilers. It wasn't very dangerous, but it could be slow at times as we didn't want to draw big groups of the reanimators and succubi. They can be tough to contain and really pack a punch when they're together. Level 2 drew Greater Hell Spawn, Serpent Magi and Horror mages. It was extremely easy, absolutely nothing interesting happened whatsoever. Level 3 brought us Fire Boars (with their Lashers), Demon Sprites and Soul Killers (blowdart flayer variant). Again, nothign really noteworthy happened, aside from frustration of losing a bunch of kills to the lasher-enhanced exploding boars.

With that we got ready to take the trip down to the Throne. We got our TP staff ready just in case, and took the stairs. No stair trap! Perfect, so we switched back to our axe and progressed as slowly as possible until we foudn out what we were dealing with. We got around the corner when lighting came flying from off-screen. Burning souls boss pack, that's okay, slow missiles really makes them harmless. After they were dealt with we continued up and met our next two monster types; Death Lords and Undead Soul Killers (exploding dolls). They ended up being not nearly as dangerous as I thought they would be. We used the decoy to scout, which would take all the of the dolls' attention, so as long as we were careful not to let them explode near us, we were very safe. We cleared the throne without issue.

Waves 1+2 were no problem. Black flail > Resurrectors. Bartuc had Holy Freeze, so the fight was pretty slow. It never proved very dangerous though. The fourth wave was no problem, as Slow Missiles just makes a mockery out of Venom Lords. Lister's group was pulled out of the room and we got the valk into a favourable position:





The wall kept her from getting knocked back, so Kasim was free to poke at the minions as he pleased. He managed to take out a pile of them before the formation broke and we had to retreat further out of the room. We managed to get the valk into another corner, and even though Kasim got wiped almost instantly by a barrage of hits from Lister, he had taken out enough of the minions that Calabi could finish the job.

The Baal fight was actually quite fun. We subbed Kasim's helmet to Guillaume's Face, so both him and Calabi were sporting some CB (she also has OW from her Gore Riders). The fight consisted of Baal teleporting around a bunch, and our group chasing him down. He only summoned his clone a couple times, so it wasn't too annoying. When he was getting down to low health, he made a pretty good last stand:





Unfortunately for him, Kasim actually ignored the appendages this time, so him and Calabi could tag-team the big guy. The CB and OW made it a pretty quick fight in the end, and nobody (except Baal) was ever at critically low health. We used up about a row and a half of full juves and some healers making sure Kasim didn't get below half, but that was it really. Baal's drop was about as dull as ever, but that's okay, because I now had my first Guardian ever!

Obligatory stats-upon-baal-death screeny:




That was great and all, but it wouldn't be complete until those moo moos bit it as well. The Cow level was pretty uneventful, we met up with the cow king right away, so that was a bit scary as we had no space to retreat and he was PI. He went down fairly easily though, albeit slowly. We decided that since we had a ton of money lying around to spare, it would be fun to use our Black flail to make some ground beef and leave it lying all over the cow level. All in all, it was an easy clear, but it was also very fun.

The only notable find of the last leg of the journey was Trang's Shield in the cow level.

So there you have it, Calabi's journey has finally come to a close! As I mentioned above, she is my first Guardian, and she was an extremely fun character to play. I highly recommend playing a passive zon to everyone who has ever wanted to try it, they are extremely durable (if I could Guardian one with my MUCH less than perfect play, everybody else stands a pretty good chance;)), and with some decent drops they aren't even that slow to quest with. This was the most fun I've had with a D2 character in a long long time. I will leave you all with a final breakdown of her gear(you can see her stats above, so I'll spare you that):

Calabi's main gear used was:

Main Switch

* Tal Rasha's Horadric Crest Death Mask (Socketed with a Perfect Ruby)
* 'Lionheart' Gothic Plate
* Chromatic ([email protected]) Amulet of Luck (30% MF)
* Rare rings with various resists/AR/PDR/MDR
* 100% monster flee Balanced Knife (this has gotten me out of more trouble than I care to admit)
* 'Rhyme' Bone Shield
* Athletic (+3 P/M skills) Light Gauntlets of Readiness (10%ias)
* Russet (16%FR) War Belt of the Squid (+72 life)
* Gore Rider War Boots

Fighting switch:
* 'Passion' Feral Axe

A bunch of life/res charms

Summary of Bonuses:
- 10% OW
- 15% CB
- 15% Deadly Strike
- 62% Critical Strike
- 54% Dodge
- 60% Avoid
- Maxed resistances on shield switch, 69/70/73/51 on axe switch
- 3510 AR with Kasim's Aura (76% cth Hell Bovine)
- 38% chance to block with 'Rhyme'
- 55% MF on Shield switch (30% with the axe)
- 12FPA with Berserk, 8/9/9/9/14 with Zeal
- +3 Passive and Magic Skills

Merc:
* Tal Rasha's Crest (Guillaume's Face for boss fights)
* 'Lionheart' Gothic Plate
* 'Insight' Colossus Voulge

Areas skipped: 0
Monsters parked: 0

Guardian Calabi the Axe-wielding Amazon, with Kasim the Blessed Aim Guard - lvl **, Full Game Clear
 
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OldSoldier

Diabloii.Net Member
Congrats on your guardian Jiansonz, but really we expect nothing less!

Congrats also Pb_Pal, that is quite a journey as well! It is a great feeling to get your first guardian, let alone a tournament one!

Bladejj, I think you'll find that a high level confuse and your malice IG will last almost the entire journey. Even if your IG gets killed, Malice is pretty cheap so a new one can be made and that OW is always useful. I participated in a tournament a few years back with a Confuse necro and it was one of my most entertaining characters. I was able to use corpse explosion though, which sped the gameplay quite a bit.
 

Southpaw8668

Diabloii.Net Member
@Pb_pal - Pretty nice when the host finishes strong as well! Great job and wonderful write-ups along the way. Thanks for coming up with a fun tournament idea.
 

bladejj

Diabloii.Net Member
Very quick note on Relic, he cleared the Blood Moor, Cold Plains, Burial Ground the attached Crypt / Mausoleum. In those four area's alone he found the following S/U items. It seemed like they were dropping way more than usual. It's been a while sense I've played a D2 character through NM/Hell, but is this something I should continue to expect going forward? If so, it should make it a lot more entertaining. Quick note, I am running approximately 275% MF on merc kills.
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Interestly, my current rings are both superior to the Nagel (21%) and offer some great resistances. Also, I attached the picture of the cows showing the full power of confuse.
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Relic the Ironmancer with Razan the Blesses Mercenary and a Malice IG, NM Cold Plains, Level 48
 

Pb_pal

Diabloii.Net Member
Thanks for the congrats everyone, I'm glad people have enjoyed reading about her journey.

@Southpaw8668 - Thanks! Glad you enjoyed the tournament :)

@bladejj - That's an awesome shot of the cows, Relic looks so calm and collected standing in amongst all that beef! As for your S/U count, that seems a bit high but definitely not unreasonable. It's quite amazing the amount of stuff you can find when running high MF on full clears. I think both jiansonz and I ended up having somewhere in the mid-400's on merc kill by the end of NM, so the potential for some great finds is definitely there.

I'm still debating joining up with another character, and I might do so, but first I'm going to take a crack at kestegs' tournament.

Good luck to all remaining participants, I will be watching your progress very closely! Here's hoping Calabi and Sissy can get some more company! :)
 
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