Diablo II: Lord of Destruction Forum  /  Speedrun commentaries

Hey everyone, I've been reaching out to a lot of you over the last few months about commentating several of the existing WR runs, trying to add some of the flavor I get as a consumer when watching events like GDQ to the top tier performances you have all been putting out.

First up, thanks everyone who has given me permission to post these commentaries on YouTube. I'm mostly putting this post up as a heads up to many people that I'll continue to reach out - I really don't want to put out anything without folks' permission, so apologies if my messages have seemed a bit weird coming out of the blue.

Second up - I'm working through a series of commentaries of all the runs that were once the fastest P1 Normal Baal kill. I'm having a bit of a hard time getting contact details for Nightfall since he stopped streaming about 8 months ago, if anyone has an email or could point him to this thread or something I'd really appreciate it. Those pioneering WRs deserve some respect and it has been really fun watching the knowledge and strategies evolve.

Third - coming out of doing all these commentaries I've been writing up a document in the style of those "History of X World Records" videos. I haven't done any video editing since high school in 2005, so I don't know if it will actually turn into anything, but so far I'm 5000 words in and only just getting to Fragfrog's 58 minute segmented assassin run. If anyone is happy to help answering questions in piecing things together, please shout out. Using the wayback machine on speedrun dot com hasn't been too reliable due to the use of javascript (for example when looking at an archive page from 2016, it was showing a WR from MrLlama in 2018), and I'm also anticipating troubles figuring out what happened with Slimo's deleted WRs around the whole "cheated but didn't really cheat" thing. I've been pretty reliant on Indrek's google doc with video links, so for old sorc WRs that don't have a video link, that's going to be a challenge in general for me.

Finally - I know the race series has kind of dropped off, and was mostly focused on hell runs, but would people be interested in me hosting and commentating a couple of normal races of 3-4 participants? I'm in Australia so timing would be difficult, but I was thinking either Friday night for the Americans (so my Saturday morning), or Saturday morning for the Europeans (my Saturday evening) could work. If there's interest I'll start a separate topic and try and flesh out the details in there.


“Finally” - I’d love to join in on races if the hours are reasonable for me. I was pretty sad when the recent series of hell races were changed to impossible times for me.


Yeah could work for me (EU timing)


By the way, I've now gotten in contact with Nightfall - by some extreme fortuitous chance he started streaming again the very next day after I put up this post.

Thanks Mekalb & sanzeau for the interest, given timing differences between each of you I might hold out a little longer for further interested parties to help on the timing decision.

(edited: )

You inspired me to try. I didn't have time to watch it in anything but 2x speed so I definitely made some mistakes but it was enjoyable 🙂
In 1.5x or 1x next time I will try and point out more things for a general audience.

Congrats Mekalb on this nice run, almost had WR there.

MekalbMekalb and BKSilv3rBKSilv3r like this. 

Alright, first video in the series just went live - hopefully I can keep this up at roughly a rate of 1/day (still need to get in touch with 327, mostly don't want to message him on Twitch in the middle of a stream 🙂 )

Below are my notes on the run just in case I never finish this massive script (9000 words so far!) and someone else picks up the project, or in case when I do finish the project someone thinks I didn't notice a particular micro optimisation that I in fact just chose not to mention because the amount of detail in these runs is ridiculous!

Just to be clear here, some of these comments are in light of modern strategies, no disrespect meant toward the runners, in fact, mad respect to you all!

LaVsr 1:51:53
According to Livesplit - this was his 15th attempt at a “single segment” (i.e. not segmented) run with the assassin, after a race 1 week earlier against another member of SpeedRunsLive.
Assassin - allowed playing it risky with resistances, etc
Poor use of Katar for most of the game with slow AS
Started out by investing 10 points into energy, no investment in vitality until level 4.
Very low use of Burst of Speed, might have only been 1 point? Need to recheck but it was minimal for sure, had at least 7 levels in FB
Reasonable maps knowledge - had no clue on Flayer Dungeon level 3 and ran too close to walls in open act 2 maps. Found the exit to Lost city from Far Oasis as well as maggot lair, but with only dry hills WP and chose to go into the maggot lair instead of pushing forward in hope of LC WP.
Weirdest thing - after countess he seemed to treat the run as if it were Iron Man; NEVER save & quitting. This meant that re-running across the act 2 maps left him without monster respawns, and also ended up exploring Tal Rasha’s tomb checking the right hand side first in order to harvest XP. I’m genuinely not sure if tal rashas tomb was a mistake in map knowledge, or if it was deliberate for XP.
2nd way Arcane after starting exploring from top left.
Bad A2 tombs + maggot + viper temple maps, lots of twists & turns
Pretty good A3 maps, no marsh skip but sewers and Durance were very nice. Rough moment with the sewers, didn't get any WPs until Trav and didn't go via Sewers, so had to run back from the trav WP to the sewers after doing Flayer Dungeon.
Perfect cave/WSK maps in A5 (ancients way was literally perfect)
6 or 7 countess runs for the runes, ended up cubing a Tir from 3 elds
Rough gold management, picked up a bunch of stuff off the ground but wasn’t really targeting high value items like armors, ended up running out of gold in the Baal fight.
Generally great gameplay overall though? Didn’t excessively lay traps, knew to stick & move, switched to using fire blast in the maggot lair/whenever space was tight; used the stealth bug but waited until he was making the run from Great Marsh to Outer Cloister in order to make sure the FRW stayed active for the maximum length of time possible
Moat tricked Mephisto?!
Did the Jade Figurine quest
Used A3 merc to beat vizier and colenzo - didn’t hire until in the Chaos sanctuary
Pretty good mana management overall - barely ever went back to town to buy potions
Massively overlevelled, was level 21 coming into the Diablo fight
Got meh gear, some FHR on a pair of rare boots from duriel and pretty garbage resistance stuff otherwise (poison res rare ring and a poison length reduced ring from A1 are all I remember)
Used a light belt the whole game, never putting in the strength to get a 3 row Belt.
Was still picking up XP shrines when 90% of the way to level 20, at the expense of Skill shrines in some cases
Killed Chaos seal bosses in sub optimal order: Vizier-De Seis-Infector instead of infector first

Good: damage output, play style (stick & move)
Opportunities: low investment in burst of speed, poor gear outside of runewords, gold management, experience management, not save & quitting for monster respawns.


Holy cow. It took a month but I've basically got the full script together. 14500 words. I'm going to have to add even more words in and split it into a multi part thing I think.

MekalbMekalb likes this. 

Well part 1 is done. 2 to go. Thanks everyone for the help on the series so far!

WafuWafu, bruce0303bruce0303 and 2 others like this. 

Part 2 up - seriously doubt I'm going to get part 3 done in the next week, sadly. Thanks for the interest so far!

WafuWafu, bruce0303bruce0303 and IndrekIndrek like this. 

Annnnd the final installment is done:

So many technical issues on this last one, I'm going to have a break from these for a bit. If I do another I'm weighing up between History of Hell runs (given it's quite long), history of Barb runs (I just love the "Pretty f*cking useless" description on Nightfall's site as an image, plus really enjoyed Bender's push for sub 2 hours a couple of years ago and Mekalb's push for all the barb records more recently), or history of pacifist (it's a neat concept and would be a shorter history).

IndrekIndrek and WafuWafu like this. 
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