Diablo II: Lord of Destruction Forum  /  Classic ideas for hell runs
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Thought it might be a good idea to combine some of the classic ideas I've seen from various runners to advance them further together.

P8/Px barb definitely faster with classic, but there's potential there for Players 1 as well.

Main problem in the players 1 category is leveling to 30. I've had most success with Choking Potions and Concentrate with Savage Polearm recipe. Bender recently proved you can start getting experience in classic nightmare from level 21 already and it works really good.

One thing to pay attention to when going to nightmare at level 21 is that you might want to stock up with big potions in normal act 4 first, because you'll be too low level to buy them in nightmare. Need to be at least 26.

Current route for the barbarian with classic strategy should be something like this:
Honestly I'm uncertain about normal leveling and skill strategy. Need help working this out. Some kind of hybrid Double Swing/Concentrate with double mastery might work. There are many options and they need testing.

Savage Polearm and concentrate is enough to slay normal bosses with ease. Jail/Beetleburst/Flayer Jungle/Ruined Temple leveling always works. Need to reach at least level 21 in normal, but might be worth it on the barbarian to go a little higher to handle nightmare with a higher level Savage Polearm.

Level up to 30 in nightmare Cold Plains/Stony Field using choking potions and concentrate (Savage Polearm recipe gives good enough weapon if nothing drops). I had better success with 2h weapon and conc, but with the right 1h weapons I can see double swing/frenzy working a lot better. The 1h weapons are difficult to get compared to a Savage Polearm.

Once level 30 I feel like using another respec for whirlwind is not needed. Just spec into whirlwind already as you should have polearm mastery from using the Savage Polearm. Respec once you find your crushing blow setup.

Once level 30 the same Savage Polearm is strong enough to kill Andariel for Bonesnap. Humongous Giant Axe or Goblin Toes also work well enough. Bonesnap chances from nightmare Andariel are really good, but it's still going to be an annoying part of the run if it doesn't drop fast enough.

Classic drops a ton of low sets that are super useful when combined. I even had a lot of success using Cathan ring+amulet for the 15-20 fire damage. It may seem like a low amount, but classic Whirlwind makes even 20 fire damage look good.

Build a magic find helm with the best topazes you can find. There are no socketed armors in classic so don't waste time looking for one. A lot of low sets give easy magic find. It's also worth shopping magic find gloves/boots.

Once Bonesnap/Humongous/Goblins drop from Andariel it's time to push forward. I would go all the way to Hell Diablo. In players 1 you can handle Hell Diablo at level 30 already, but if you stick to whirling through the minions on the way you'll reach at least level 40.

After killing Hell Diablo it's time to convert. First you should shop a teleport charges staff. Nightmare Drognan at the gate probably best. Unfortunately need to hover all staves since too high level.

I tried upgrading Bonesnap to a War Club (Ral, Sol, PEmerald) and it appears to be better at getting the levels from Eldritch than War Cry. Whirlwind much more mana efficient so don't need to worry about that. It does take a good amount of repairs however, but I didn't find that to be much of a problem.

I wouldn't even Whirlwind Eldritch without Shael and upgraded Bonesnap. Just respec to War Cry if you don't want to test your luck with nm Countess. Can always grab the Ral from act 5 Barbarians. Normal/Nm Hellforges may be a good idea. Even more so if you still need the perfect emerald.

Some important items to save in classic for when you convert:
The General's Tan Do Li Ga Flail to apply slow against Baal. Makes the fight a lot faster and safer.
Rattlecage for easy crushing blow on the mercenary.
Twitchthroe for attack speed on the merc (applies CB faster with Strength)
Perfect Emerald to upgrade Bonesnap to exceptional (Ral, Sol, Pemerald) War Club Bonesnap requires 125 strength

Looking forward to your classic science


Just to clarify why lvling in act1 nm works in classic:

The monsterlevels are lower: Bloodmoor+Den = lvl26, Cold Plain+Cave = 27, Stony = 29 and bossgroups get +3 added to that. Just based on lvl difference, you kinda want to grab lvl 22 in the blood moor/den. 22-25 i did in the cold plains in my tests, but you could also do corpsefire runs and kill the easier blood moor groups

The nice thing is even basic fallens are worth 800+ xp, as comparison 2 fallens in nightmare = 1 serena minion, so just getting the burning house tile or the bishibosh tile next to a waypoint can already be a strong lvling option, since there are like 30 fallens guaranteed

here is a video of me gaining lvl 21 to 25 in 10 minutes with an explosive arrow amazon

Another thing to remember is that you need to kill duriel in nm, otherwise you still have to do act5 normal after converting (same for hell -> nm)

So my char strats would be:
- Pala classic, lvl to 23.9 and convert (to avoid doing nm maggot without teleport)
- Necro im not sure, but def kills NM duriel before converting, requires 20+ fcr to do normal i think
- Amazon: Kinda needs explosive arrow build to make NM work (no swapcast), however explosive arrow is really slow at act4 normal (like loose 7 minutes slow). Need to see if there is a build i can do that works for normal and doesnt need a respec, otherwise i think you dont gain much here
- Sorc: I`m no expert here, not sure how hard cs is at lvl 21 without merc, but due to more mobility, nm lvling should be really quick here
- Barb: tried beating up blood moor groups with doubleswing, wasnt horrible. I could see two handed leap attack work or concentrate. Advantage of leap attack would be that it gains 30% ED per level and there is a bug where it doesnt execute the attackframes but still attacks. Its hard to execute but with slow bloodmoor groups that might be viable + strong enough to oneshot minions

(edited: )

While I don't want to just list off differences most people might know there are some interesting additional benefits of being Classic:

- Flawless gems drop at a significantly higher rate since there are no charms/jewels to otherwise occupy the drops. This opens up the 3 flawless gems plus a magic weapon for iLvl 30 outcome. A Maul can have up to Alvl of 25 with this recipe. Since classic has a reduced pool of affixes available as well, it's much easier to roll a +ED% +AR +6% Mana stolen per hit. Then you have your pick of Flawless (or gem-shrined/cubed into perfect) gems to socket into it.

- The reduced affix level also means that imbues should be considered for classes differently.

- Jewelry rolls very high single Resistances and +life while in classic as well, making stacking res a bit easier without having to shop it on boots/gloves/belt etc.

- Gas potions can be employed on most classes for decent clear speed, and accelerated with class specific skills. This does mean that there may be potential for different skill usage that is only viable at lower levels (prior to 16), or that gains time back in other ways. Basically: reconsider skill order all together and leveling requirements for more time save.

- The reduced pool of droppable items, and possible sets/uniques does mean you can "count" on getting specific drops more aggressively. Grinding out a Jail map, and then Andy dropping run/walk boots and or Crushflange, becomes a much more likely occurrence. This can set up some pretty unbeatable Normal difficulty starts if ground out.

These are the primary things I've been considering and have seen running the Hell Barb through with classic start.


Thanks for sharing the ideas Bender and Macro.

How does the leap attack bug work? Would definitely like to try that.

- The reduced affix level also means that imbues should be considered for classes differently.
Does this mean it's more likely to get run speed when you imbue boots?

I've been thinking of a way to make use of nightmare den respec in a normal run, but I don't think there's anything. I'll throw it in here maybe someone has something. Could complete nightmare den right after killing Diablo, go to nightmare to complete Den, respec and run for Baal in normal.


Imbue: Havent tried imbues, but all my chars i tried were with shopped gear and it never took more than 3 gheed visits to get 20 run/walk. 10 attackspeed gloves also seem to be easy

Can use this calculator to look at odds for affixes: https://diablo3.ingame.de/diablodb/affix_index.php?lang=en&version=d2c&patch=111

NM den in normal runs: dont really see that being better than having runewords for all of normal. According to that calc i just posted, runwalk imbue on normal boots at lvl9(->ilvl13) is a 1:3 chance compared to 1:4 in LoD. So i guess you could farm lvl9 in classic and imbue, if you get it convert and run towers, if not reset. Basically could guarantee yourself early runwalk

When a target is not selected and the Barbarian does not leap over or land on sub-tiles directly adjacent to a target within melee range, then the attack animation may not be executed even though the attack is: this can reduce the attack interval to a minimum of 15 frames, the minimum length of the leaping animation.

Source: https://www.theamazonbasin.com/wiki/index.php?title=Leap_Attack

Basically jump next to monsters without touching them but close enough for your weapon to hit (works best with big range weapons)

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