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  1. #21
    And oh right, regarding skills... I won't tell you how to plan your character, but a few tips at least, in case you overlooked some skills:

    You should ideally have points in only one weapon mastery of your choice, and likely one point in each other passive skill (Increased Stamina, Increased Speed, Iron Skin and Natural Resist). If you need higher resistances, you could put more points in there, but the skill has diminishing returns so it's probably unlikely that you'll max it.

    As for Warcries, I'll leave the offensive ones up to you. But you should get at least one point in the three buffs: Shout, Battle Orders, and Battle Command. Battle Orders is probably the only one worth putting many points into. You probably also can't go wrong with a point in Find Item.

    If you want more Defense, you're better off pumping Shout rather than Iron Skin; they both increase defense by an additional 10% per skill level, but Shout affects allies and increases your warcries' duration, so you won't have to recast them as often.

  2. #22
    Bloodsail Admiral Chickensoup23's Avatar
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    Thanks for the sick help guys! When im alone, im leveling a sorceress, and still LANing my barb with the paladin/necro when he's there. Now, there's one thing I don't get (pardon me as I'm still quite the noob), what stats influence the damage of a sorceress/magic spells? I doubt it's energy, I currently have 35ish STR to wear armor, XXX sta and like 5 in energy. I find myself meleeing sometimes and I'm wondering if Warmth can really keep me full mana for a while. What about the melee weapon & armor, what stats to look for as I'm grinding my way to non-noobness?

    Also, on my barb, I find myself doing "misses" quite often, even tho I have around ~300 attack rating. Any input on that? So far (since im not 30 for WW), I auto attack a lot (I'd dual hit, or whatever it is, but it requires 2 mana every hit and I run oom almost intantly) and misses are...well, bad.

    Also Lysah, that seems like very good advice, but it's mostly...gibberish for now. I'll keep on playing and figuring it out myself :P
    Last edited by Chickensoup23; 2011-10-30 at 03:43 PM.

  3. #23
    None of the four primary stats increase a Sorceress' (or any classes') spell damage. Spell damage is based mostly on your skill level of that spell (and synergies and masteries), so to increase the damage of them, you typically need items that increase your skill levels (i.e. an amulet that grants +1 to Sorceress Skill Levels or a helm with +2 to All Skill Levels).

    Though there are a few items (unique items and rune words) that now have things like "+10% fire skill damage", which also would increase the damage of Sorc fire spells, as well as say Druid fire spells and Amazon's fire arrows.

    Hit rate is based on your Attack Rating and relative levels between you and your enemy. If you are much lower level than the enemy, your hit rate will suffer regardless of how much AR you have. If you mouse over your Attack Rating on your character screen, it will tell you what your hit chance is against the last monster you fought; having ~70+% is plenty fine, as you're not going to be "hit capped" (and can't exceed 95% hit anyway).

    A lot of skills can increase Attack Rating (most combat skills increase AR with each rank, and weapon masteries increase AR with the chosen weapon), and Dexterity affects AR too. One point of Dexterity grants 5 Attack Rating before modifiers, which might add up, but is typically a small factor compared to say items with +100 Attack Rating on them.

    I keep making edits... right, another way to effectively increase your hit chance is to lower your enemies' Defense. Battle Cry can do this. It's AoE and lasts pretty long (usually more than long enough to kill an enemy), though its radius is small.

    And oh, it's pretty common for a sorc to be constantly OOM early game... not very much you can do about that. But as max mana increases, passive mana regeneration does as well, and items that restore mana with each kill can help alleviate some problems.

    But again, if you can make an Insight, you're set. =p
    Last edited by Shaiandra; 2011-10-30 at 03:58 PM.

  4. #24
    Bloodsail Admiral Chickensoup23's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shaiandra View Post

    But again, if you can make an Insight, you're set. =p
    Thanks for the advice! I read up on runes, and if I'm right, aren't insights just for polearms? Anyhow, how do runes work? All the websites out there seem to take for granted you know how they work and just list the receipe. You need the said runes, put them in the cube, and voila, you can put it on a weapon/armor slot item?

  5. #25
    You get the runes you need for it and then just put them in the item in the correct order and it comes out as w/e you're trying to make.

    The list you see is probably the order you need to put the runes in.

  6. #26
    Insight is only for Polearms, yes. But as Act 2 mercs can use Polearms, you can benefit from the Meditation Aura through there. I'd recommend getting an A2 merc anyway, if only for their passive auras.

    To make a rune word, you need to have the runes and put them in the correct order into the appropriate item type, which has exactly that many sockets and is a gray item (so even if say a blue item has sockets, it cannot be turned into a runeword).

    Which means you'll need to find a gray polearm type (it can be superior and/or ethereal) with exactly four sockets, no more, then put in the Ral, Tir, Tal and Sol runes in that order.

    Finding a polearm with exactly four sockets may be the hard part. =p There are some recipes that let you add a number of sockets to white items (which turns them gray), but even those aren't guaranteed to net 4...

  7. #27
    Bloodsail Admiral Chickensoup23's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by grandpab View Post
    You get the runes you need for it and then just put them in the item in the correct order and it comes out as w/e you're trying to make.

    The list you see is probably the order you need to put the runes in.
    So you put them in an item's sockets, and that item has the stats of that rune word. Just makin sure I understand as I play single player and I have...well, finite ressources.

    EDIT: or a runeword is something you can later on put on a weapon of choice.

  8. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by Chickensoup23 View Post
    So you put them in an item's sockets, and that item has the stats of that rune word. Just makin sure I understand as I play single player and I have...well, finite ressources.

    EDIT: or a runeword is something you can later on put on a weapon of choice.
    It's kinda like crafting. I think you have to use a grey item with the correct amount of sockets you need. Once you put all the runes in, in the correct order, it becomes the item you're trying to make.

  9. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by Chickensoup23 View Post
    So you put them in an item's sockets, and that item has the stats of that rune word. Just makin sure I understand as I play single player and I have...well, finite ressources.

    EDIT: or a runeword is something you can later on put on a weapon of choice.
    This should explain it to you nicely.

  10. #30
    Bloodsail Admiral Chickensoup23's Avatar
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    Got it. Now, for my sorceress, how do I know if a weapon is good? For my barbarian it's easier as I can look for the dmg, attack rating, etc, but for a caster....I'm lost. Again, sorry for all the questions!

  11. #31
    Quote Originally Posted by Chickensoup23 View Post
    Got it. Now, for my sorceress, how do I know if a weapon is good? For my barbarian it's easier as I can look for the dmg, attack rating, etc, but for a caster....I'm lost. Again, sorry for all the questions!
    As a caster just look for +skill weapons.

  12. #32
    Quote Originally Posted by Chickensoup23 View Post
    Got it. Now, for my sorceress, how do I know if a weapon is good? For my barbarian it's easier as I can look for the dmg, attack rating, etc, but for a caster....I'm lost. Again, sorry for all the questions!
    Everything that enhances your skills (such as "+1 to Fire abilities" or "+1 to Fireball") is good, assuming, of course, you use the skills in question. Aside from that, you can't go wrong with quickened casting time, mana, mana regen, and so forth. Obviously you don't care about the damage of the weapon itself.

    By the way, you might want to install a program called Hero Editor. It basically allows you to modify anything on your characters in single player mode, such as their skill trees, stats, name, inventory, and even their class. Even if you don't want to cheat, it's really useful to have it, simply because it allows you - among other things - to reconfigure your skill trees anytime you want, for free, instead of having to do it through the in-game system implemented in 1.13. And as you might imagine, it was pretty much a must-have before 1.13 hit, when we didn't have any way to respec. Especially for new players who can easily mess up their trees.

    I know it works for single player characters, and not for Battle.Net ones, but I can't speak for LAN ones. Don't remember how the whole thing works.

  13. #33
    In short, the weapon type doesn't matter. Damage (and enhanced damage), attack rating, increased attack speed, and other physical procs don't matter.

    Its mods are the most important part, with +skills typically being the most important. Or well, in no particular order..
    +sorceress skills
    Faster cast rate
    +increased mana/energy, or increased mana regeneration
    +mana per kill
    +life or resistances, or other defensive stats

    You might not see +all skills early on; early on, you'll likely just use staves or orbs that increase skills you like, such as a staff with +1 to Fire Ball. The Tir Ral staff runeword is a pretty good one for lv 19; it requires a two-socket staff, and you might be able to find those on sale from vendors if you just visit the Rogue Encampment or Lut Gholein a few times. It increases Fire skills, so if you find a two-socket staff that already grants a bonus to say Fireball, perfect. (Though a staff with +3 to Fireball will probably run about 80k or 90k gold, which might be more than a young untwinked Sorc can afford).


    Lysah mentioned the Spirit Runeword for example, which is a ridiculously amazing weapon for its level (usable at lv 25). When socketed in a 4-socket sword, it grants the following:
    +2 To All Skills [Amazing]
    +25-35% Faster Cast Rate (varies) [Amazing]
    +55% Faster Hit Recovery [Very good for living]
    Adds 1-50 Lightning Damage [Irrelevant]
    Adds 3-14 Cold Damage 3 Second Duration (Normal) [Irrelevant]
    +75 Poison Damage Over 5 Seconds [Irrelevant]
    7% Life Stolen Per Hit [Irrelevant]
    +250 Defense Vs. Missile [Not a bad bonus]
    +22 To Vitality [44 life, not shabby]
    +89-112 To Mana (varies) [Huge amount, upwards of 56 Energy]
    +3-8 Magic Absorb (varies) [Slight survivability bonus; note that this only affects non-elemental "Magic", such as Bone spells]

    So that could be an example of some things to look for, and some to not care about. Hope that helps?


    And I guess one more semi-related tip, since I keep talking about rune words... One of the most reliable places to consistently get Runes is from the Countess, in the Forgotten Tower (Act 1, Black Marsh). Of course you can't reliably get the runes you want, but she almost always drops two random runes. Often low level ones, but also remember it's possible to use the Horadric Cube to transmute 3 of a rune into the next one up. So if she's being stubborn about not dropping a Ral Rune for example, maybe eventually you'll get three Tal Runes that can be transmuted into a Ral.
    Last edited by Shaiandra; 2011-10-30 at 04:57 PM.

  14. #34
    Senior Memb- malkara's Avatar
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    On top of all that's said, I can't really read a DII thread without giving the advice of trying out Median XL. It's too awesome to contain in a short post, but if you ever find yourself 'bored' with Vanilla DII, check it out As for Diablo 2, I remember having a really tough time on Diablo, and then steamrolling Baal back when I played it with my dad as.. druid/necro I think it was, so when it gets tough, just keep on goin
    What do you think you know and how do you think you know it?

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  15. #35
    You will use a lot of mana potions before you have items. Just keep a full belt of mana pots and pick up any you see so you can keep spamming.

    If you can get a spirit sword and an insight on your merc you will pretty much have infinite mana unless you're spamming teleport, in which case you get your full orb back in 3 seconds anyway when you stop.

    Until then, stay fireball and get a Leaf, as mentioned, you can pick up Ral from the act 5 rescue quest if you really can't find one, and tir's should be absolutely everywhere. You can find a shell 2os staff in act 2 or 3 easily just be stepping in and out of town over and over for a few minutes.

    Runewords work like gems, you put them in (in order) and when the last one falls into place a new unique item explodes. It will keep old attributes, but it will not work on magical items. That means that if the recipe calls for a staff, it needs to just be a staff, it can't be a staff of storms, or a long staff of insight, or any other modification. At best, the only actual mods you can get on runeword items are "superior" for the extra damage or defense.
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  16. #36
    Bloodsail Admiral Chickensoup23's Avatar
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    Thanks Lysah & Shai!

    I play mostly single player & LAN, and I believe rune words are not available in those cases. Still true? Thanks again for the input, really helps!

  17. #37
    Uh.. hrm. Riiight.. I thought Ladder stuff would work on single-player, but seems not. Apparently most of the good rune words (Spirit and Insight included) only work on Ladder characters on b.net, and do not work on single-player or open characters. I guess you can ignore some of the things we've said then. ;p

    Well, Leaf (the Tir Ral +fire staff) is still in. Heart of the Oak is probably the best caster weapon you can get (and I'd argue it's better than Spirit anyway), but it requires much higher level (and in turn rarer) runes.

  18. #38
    Bloodsail Admiral Chickensoup23's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shaiandra View Post
    Uh.. hrm. Riiight.. I thought Ladder stuff would work on single-player, but seems not. Apparently most of the good rune words (Spirit and Insight included) only work on Ladder characters on b.net, and do not work on single-player or open characters. I guess you can ignore some of the things we've said then. ;p

    Well, Leaf (the Tir Ral +fire staff) is still in. Heart of the Oak is probably the best caster weapon you can get (and I'd argue it's better than Spirit anyway), but it requires much higher level (and in turn rarer) runes.
    Got it

    Also, I'm leveling my sorceress atm, and wondering - do I keep level 1 Fireblast (or whatever the starter spell is) till level 13? (fireball). Damage gets low eventually, any way to work around that without wasting points?

  19. #39
    Scarab Lord zealous's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chickensoup23 View Post
    Got it

    Also, I'm leveling my sorceress atm, and wondering - do I keep level 1 Fireblast (or whatever the starter spell is) till level 13? (fireball). Damage gets low eventually, any way to work around that without wasting points?
    You can respec in v 1.13 after doing one of the quests in Act 1 I think. There are also numerous character editors. Shadowmaster, Zonfire etc.

    If you're playing a Fire Sorc, you will be aiming at maxing the meteor spell probably, possibly Hydra (not too sure about that one).

    I wouldn't invest too much points in intermediary skills, just when you have nothing else left to invest in at the time (you'll face moments where you can't reach the "good" spells yet and you just hit a level block on passives). Don't invest points in passing skills unless you have to (or plan to edit/respec your character later).

    Also, some people try and get some points in Teleport/Mana shield, regardless of what tree they are leveling in. It may save your ass on Hell difficulty (if you plan to solo it). But that's at later levels.
    Last edited by zealous; 2011-10-30 at 06:11 PM.
    - Looks like they took him to some bolt hole in the Wounded Coast.
    - I wonder if it's near the Injured Cliffs? Or the Limping Hills? Massive-Head-Trauma-Bay? No? Just me? *sigh* Forget I said anything.

  20. #40
    Bloodsail Admiral Chickensoup23's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zealous View Post
    You can respec in v 1.13 after doing one of the quests in Act 1 I think. There are also numerous character editors. Shadowmaster, Zonfire etc.

    If you're playing a Fire Sorc, you will be aiming at maxing the meteor spell probably, possibly Hydra (not too sure about that one).

    I wouldn't invest too much points in intermediary skills, just when you have nothing else left to invest in at the time (you'll face moments where you can't reach the "good" spells yet and you just hit a level block on passives). Don't invest points in passing skills unless you have to (or plan to edit/respec your character later).

    Also, some people try and get some points in Teleport/Mana shield, regardless of what tree they are leveling in. It may save your ass on Hell difficulty (if you plan to solo it). But that's at later levels.
    I'll have respecced by then, guaranteed! Problem is that I have 1 respec atm and wouldn't want to waste it only "to get to elvel 13". I'll try and melee my way, lol.

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