The Untwinked Level 99 Progress Thread, Revenge of the 99ers

Owlie

Diabloii.Net Member
...After the initial theorycrafting for Nihlathak running, it was time to get serious in comparing the theoretical performance of different weapons and curses. So I did some number crunching for hours. :) Again I thought I'd share this for those interested, in particular considering @PhineasB is going to do the same soon and I'm curious to see what he comes up with....
As chance would have it, I worked on my Poisonmancer Pit spreadsheet yesterday (click here for a quick look). It should simulate the relevant parts of the character (attributes, main skills, gear) and his performance in the Pit (i.e. it takes into account the specifics of monsters and calculates PN and CE dmg in various setups). In particular, the spreadsheet makes it easy to obtain and compare final results for various gear. (Too lazy at the moment to further prettify, sorry.)

It should be usable for any PN/CE necro with minimal modifications. For Nihlathak, obviously change the monster specifics (and include Nihl), but we could also add your "after X seconds Y CEs to kill Nihl" calculations, etc. I would be happy to do this or help if there is interest.

I hope this proves helpful and I welcome any comments, especially criticisms/suggestions/corrections.

I would also link to onderduiker's CE post on AB, which is relevant for Nihl runs. It calculates the dmg from Nihlathak's CE, but player's CE from the same corpses is easily obtainable from these.

Best of luck to the future 99ers!
 

Yng

Diabloii.Net Member
Wow according to that AB post an Arachnid corpse can potentiallly deal nearly 3100 damage (before reductions) from CE if you’re Cursed. Adding Arachnid + curse proc to abort criteria, that’s really close to a 1 shot for me (about 2319 at 75% FR).

E: I’ve also been searching for (as in rolled around 10 unsuccessful) a 4 OS Scythe and I think if I find it I’ll cube up and make a second Infinity. All that talk about Thresher/GT god base but with a Scythe I think there would be very very little corpses skipping SMRIP through Merc last hit.
 
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ffs

Diabloii.Net Member
@Yng I think @scrcrw's reasoning was the other way around, i.e. it being pointless to use Bone Spear over PN when using CE, given PN has higher AoE damage (hitting some ~20-30 monsters whereas Bone Spear only hits a couple of monsters) and deals damage while casting CEs (which Bone Spear does not). I'd agree with that logic and expect PN to be clearly stronger also when running fully twinked. But I'm curious and will test with a twinked Bonemancer to see how it compares with CE.

Going Bone Spear without Merc has its merits. Sure you have the CC curses, but they are a necessity when running with Merc/IG, they don't solve all problems for good. In comparison to running with Lightning Sorc, you hang around there longer, so things can get ugly. Necro is relatively safe with my current setup, but the Merc can always insta-RIP when next to the IG in a poison cloud (happened often when I started) or knocked out by Witches or even CEs, so I have to watch out and reposition often. When running without Merc that's not required, and generally runs are extremely rarely aborted I'd assume. It's also not that much slower as you can see from the vids, only a couple of seconds difference. I do believe it's slower in the end, but the reason I ruled out this approach altogether was mostly due to having only one skiller, which has a big impact on Bone Spear damage but doesn't affect my CE damage at all. Being fully twinked or not makes a big difference for the viability of the build in this case.

@Owlie Thanks a lot for the spreadsheet! I'll definitely fool around with it and might come back to you on this. :)
 

Jonesy_Pantz

Diabloii.Net Member
If i was going to start this, whats the expecting time frame 300-400 hours? would also make sense to go for the grail at the same time.
its something i'd consider after i do my all HC to completion.
 

Yng

Diabloii.Net Member
A streamer Indrekleede managed sub 300 hours (293 IIRC) as HC with no RWM/extended stash. I’d say sub 250 is definitely possible as SC/RWM Sorceress if you were very efficient.
 

ffs

Diabloii.Net Member
E: I’ve also been searching for (as in rolled around 10 unsuccessful) a 4 OS Scythe and I think if I find it I’ll cube up and make a second Infinity. All that talk about Thresher/GT god base but with a Scythe I think there would be very very little corpses skipping SMRIP through Merc last hit.
I like that idea for another reason. To be honest Infinity Scythe for Merc seems a very overkill price for a very small difference in running comfort to me. :) However, have you considered using Infinity on the Sorc? IIRC you mentioned having a socketed Viper laying around. When using that you can hit 117% FCR while wielding Infinity with a suitable craft amulet, i.e. one that rolled any extra FCR (Griffon's = 25, Viper = 55, Arach = 75, gloves = 95, non-Nature's Peace ring = 105, so 12 more FCR needed). This would ideally net you an additional -25% LR (best Infinity -LR roll and faceted Viper) in comparison to CM, and speed up runs vs LI Nihlathak even more. The defensive drawbacks aren't that bad since you really only need to max FR vs Nihlathak, which Spirit doesn't provide anyway.

With twinked Sorcs I played around quite a bit with an Infinity Scythe. It's awesome for allowing Insight Merc for longer runs and I used it for numerous types of runs. I considered self-wielding Infinity on my 99er Sorc as well before I made her first Infinity. Decided against it obviously, but that was about mid-way through her journey with lots of different situations ahead, so I wanted to keep some flexibility. Also at the end I didn't have a spare socket quest to use on a Viper, so I couldn't have used an extra facet either.

Specifically for running Nihlathak though, it could be the best setup offensively given the LI rolls, moreover allowing other Merc options like Reaper for example.
 

Pb_pal

Diabloii.Net Member
If i was going to start this, whats the expecting time frame 300-400 hours? would also make sense to go for the grail at the same time.
its something i'd consider after i do my all HC to completion.
I think most of us have come in around 350 hours or so, at least the ones earlier on that I remember. So yes, I'd say that time frame is pretty good, depending of course on the build you choose and targets you run.

@ffs - Awesome video, thanks for that!
 
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Yng

Diabloii.Net Member
@ffs Unfortunately I don’t have a proper Amulet for that setup, but that does sound interesting (with another Scythe base on the Merc Insight). I think it is worth downgrading to Scythe on his Infinity, though, as he really won’t be able to kill anything on P8 in the time it takes to finish a run so you will rarely have the issue of Merc last hitting mobs and providing CE viable corpses. It’s not like I need the runes for anything else at this point and I honestly wish I had considered it sooner.

But as D2 drops always go, when you’re actually looking for something no matter how small it always takes longer to find it. I’ve probably picked up or rolled 15 Scythes non 4 socket in the last ~10% lmao.
 

Baltha

Diabloii.Net Member
Ey 99ers! I really admire your dedication! I'm thinking in joining you soon with a meteorb (not sure if I'll be respecing her later to Blizzard).

A question, if you dont mind me asking. What is your strategy to get your equipment from untwinked to fully geared as fast as possible (considering i'll be playing sorc) ? Straight to LK / Hell Meph? Do you stop at NM Meph?

I know Gripphon was doing a project like that but I think he never ended it.
 
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ffs

Diabloii.Net Member
For me personally 2 Bers would just seem like a lot for something that adds a barely noticeable extra safety (CEs rarely frightened me) but no damage/speed improvement at all. Many things to do with Bers. :) But why not, you could always use it for self-wielding at some later point after all so it's not wasted by any means! ;) The setup might be worth trying also without a +2 skill roll on the 2x FCR amulet, those are relatively easy to come by. Though I'd run the numbers for that, not sure if that would be an improvement overall.
 

Yng

Diabloii.Net Member
1/4-1/3 of life in a CE is scary to me, it makes everything else that much more dangerous. Every LE (even with Griffon’s) seems like too much opportunity to cast multiple CEs and his damage does nothing to contribute to run speed anyway. On top of that he’s not even leeching.
 

T72on1

Diabloii.Net Member
I agree with @ffs ... CE isn't that much of a problem when running Nihl if you have some PDR and maxed fire res. So Infinity Scythe? Not worth it in my opinion.
 

Quinneczech

Diabloii.Net Member
So, just a quick update on Blackwell.

He just defeated normal Baal on lvl 42. He didn't manage to find any good weapons, so he is using some kind of 74 max dmg magic Maul he was lucky to shop. What he did manage tho, is to lose all his runes due to his [yep, its the character's fault] absence of knowledge how to operate ATMA. It was up to Sol, so not a big deal. Guess he will farm nm countess for some time now.. ;]

Anyway, after I [yup, switching to operator mode] spent 25 minutes in maggot lair on P8, I realised, that there is no need for such suffering and changed the player settings to 1 to quickly proceed to a5. I leveled up at Pindle from 30 to 40 and then I finished the whole difficulty.

My main killing skill is still the concentrate, WW just doesn't cut it without proper gun. Hopefully I will drop at least something :]

I'll update the status when I make some significant progress or rip.

Q.
 

Yng

Diabloii.Net Member
@T72on1 PDR does virtually nothing because it’s a big source of damage (PDR works better for rapid applications of smaller damage) and FR is nice to have definitely but the dangerous portion of the damage is the physical portion. As I mentioned earlier referencing that AB post, Arach corpses will 2 shot virtually any Sorc build if cursed.
 

ffs

Diabloii.Net Member
I think @T72on1 meant %PDR which does help a bit. It's not that CE isn't dangerous (it definitely is), but I was comfortable enough being able to survive a single one. It's only an issue when Nihl rolls LI, otherwise he's always dead before a Merc kill occurs. And I wasn't too reluctant to S&E those LI + Cursed rolls in any case, they could be dangerous in many ways.

Now with Necro it's very different, lots CEs from Nihl of course. Actually shuffled some gear around and currently running with dual Dwarf Star. Helps a lot vs CE, e.g. reducing the fire portion of a 2000 damage CE to just 100 (or total damage to 1000 with 10% PDR from Shako). Solid setup for now when still getting comfortable with the runs.
 

Yng

Diabloii.Net Member
DR does help but there’s little room for it if you’re using Griffon’s/CM, which is worth the DR loss for sure. Also DR is a less effective mitigating stat with cursed present, which is what you’re really wanting to look out for anyway.

Also another downside to the self wielding Infinity build is no FHR. Most of the time when I meet a group of nasty Zealots or w/e in HoP I just C/T right past them with the 86 FHR breakpoint. I feel pretty confident that scenario would put you in permanent hit recovery with 0/minimal FHR. There is something visually appealing about a caster with a Grim Reaper-esque weapon, though..
 

Pb_pal

Diabloii.Net Member
@RIP - All the luck to you too! I have a feeling Klaus and Kaira will be growing together for quite some time. :)

--

So remember when @ffs was almost psychic in my last update?

Well...

Though I'm still somewhat torn, because the more awesome stuff Klaus gets, the more it would hurt to... you know, just be careful please! ;)
...



Close again! ;)

--

With the MFO fast approaching and only 1 Sur left to complete his Infinity, Klaus hoped that his momentum from the last set would continue and he could finally get back to killing some actual monsters instead of opening chests and turning over rocks.

6112 - Vex (guess I forgot to take a screenie)
6147 - Vex
6234 - Ist
6467 - Gul

And then:

6497 -



That's it folks. Three runs shy of 6.5k and Klaus is officially finished with Lower Kurast. Now, the fun part! He cubed his 4 Surs, which led to this:



Worst possible -elr roll, but decent %ED which is actually more important to him. I couldn't care if it was a perfectly bad roll, I'll gladly take it. We also gave the merc a new hat:



That kits the merc out almost fully now. He's still missing a Fortitude, but I only have enough for one Lo and that's being saved for a Phoenix shield should Klaus get lucky with a Jah.

Klaus also took this opportunity to do some crafting and burned through approximately 100 caster amulets. Nothing really noteworthy, but a few "almosts":

Code:
Beast Gorget 
Amulet 
Required Level: 49 
Fingerprint: 0xded28b91 
Item Level: 93 
Version: Expansion 1.10+ 
+1 to Paladin Skill Levels 
+18% Faster Cast Rate 
+38 to Mana 
Regenerate Mana 10% 
Fire Resist +6% 

Chaos Wing 
Amulet 
Required Level: 89 
Fingerprint: 0xe5a908e2 
Item Level: 91 
Version: Expansion 1.10+ 
+2 to Barbarian Skill Levels 
+17% Faster Cast Rate 
Adds 1 - 4 Cold Damage Over 2 Secs (50 Frames) 
+17 to Mana 
Regenerate Mana 7% 
10% Better Chance of Getting Magic Items 

Doom Gorget 
Amulet 
Required Level: 89 
Fingerprint: 0xdad75595 
Item Level: 91 
Version: Expansion 1.10+ 
+2 to Barbarian Skill Levels 
+19% Faster Cast Rate 
+19 to Dexterity 
+12 to Mana 
Regenerate Mana 6% 
Poison Length Reduced by 25% 

Rune Noose 
Amulet 
Required Level: 47 
Fingerprint: 0xde33c228 
Item Level: 90 
Version: Expansion 1.10+ 
+1 to Poison and Bone Skills (Necromancer Only) 
+20% Faster Cast Rate 
+10 to Life 
+15 to Mana 
Regenerate Mana 5% 
All Resistances +14

Stone Mark 
Amulet 
Required Level: 53 
Fingerprint: 0x845f1f 
Item Level: 90 
Version: Expansion 1.10+ 
+2 to Lightning Skills (Sorceress Only) 
+10% Faster Cast Rate 
+8 to Dexterity 
+93 to Mana 
Regenerate Mana 4% 
All Resistances +16

Entropy Beads 
Amulet 
Required Level: 89 
Fingerprint: 0x96bdc057 
Item Level: 92 
Version: Expansion 1.10+ 
+2 to Druid Skill Levels 
+5% Faster Cast Rate 
+10 to Attack Rating 
+30 to Life 
+18 to Mana 
Regenerate Mana 10% 
All Resistances +10
He equipped the Entropy Beads (2 Druid skills, 5%FCR, 10 all res), did a bit of charm swapping and then assessed his situation before heading out:

- 4.2k life after Oak/BO
- Maxed Resistances
- Just over 240% MF

Sounds good! Next stop: Ancient Tunnels and some pre-MFO warmup. :D
 
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