Coming back - a journey

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Coming back - a journey

Post by zork on Tue Jul 30, 2013 5:11 pm

I came back to Median lately and found about Ultimate. For what I can see till now...I love the changes. Well done Marco.

I wiped all my old saves and started fresh on v7. I checked the guides and settled on the ATMG assassin guide for a first char.
I play on patch 1.13 using GlideWrapper. No Plugy, one stash.

Going to write down my journey on the way to 120.

Remember that you can type in /nopickup. This will prevent autolooting tons of crap. Smile

Make sure to read this page again:


New char : Assassin

Plan: ~100 STR, FULL DEX, zero VIT/NRG

day 1, lvl 52: Skillplan assa52 (Assassin, 2012 v005)
day 2, lvl 81: Skillplan assa81 (Assassin, 2012 v005)
day 3, lvl 104: Skillplan assa104 (Assassin, 2012 v005)
day 4, lvl 110: Skillplan assa110 (Assassin, 2012 v005)


Class Orb:

Make sure to actually read the class orb description! It drops in Den of Evil. It is unusable later on at lvl 120 but will help you on the way.
After level challenge 0 you can transmute your statue into the orb for blink charges.
I plan on using Shael runes only for now. Giving the orb free 75 STR. I probably will do the same for 75 VIT, %STR, %DEX and %VIT.

Full doc:


Level Challenge 0:

Make sure to set the game to /players 1 Wink
A very good spot to spawn him is near the first waypoint at the passway leading to that archer. There will be few mobs and she helps out a bit.

I actually had to recreate my character for this one. All my weapons got broke and I was left with no money. On the second try I went: 1 Bat Strike, 2 WotS, 1 Scorpion Blade. Destroying the totems was not an issue but actually killing the boss without accidently moving to close to him getting into the beam was.

Put all your points into DEX. You need the hit/damage. Spawn the boss and run north-east. Hit the totems with Bat Strike > Normal Attack until all totems are gone. Switch to the second slot with your throwing knife. Use scorpion blade to kill the boss.

I tried meleeing the boss but it made me angry pretty quickly. Wink

After that I respecced. No need for Scorpion Blade.


Gift Box:

Next on your list is the gift box. I suggest to leave the game on /players 1 until you get it. Basically you kill Griswold in old Tristram to get it. It will contain 3 unique items. Naginata, armor and boots. I suggest that you do that run again. That way you can give your rogue hireling the same armor/boots.

Personally I used my first TIR rune in a hireling bow. I wanted to do the same with my first SOL rune but found a unique short war bow while leveling and just sticked with that.

Once you have the gift box items all the skills you need are: Shadow Refuge, Crucify, Blink and that shadow warrior for some kind of distraction if needed.


Preparing for Level Challenge 1:

I remembered from my old playthroughs that Andariel drops one unique each. But Mephisto drops 2. Since I had no gear my plan was getting to Mephisto asap. The sole reason was Arcane Crystal farming. Check the cube recipe page in the documentation.

The max level to do level challenge 1 is 50. The latest level you are getting any skillpoints before that is 48. So I settled on doing the challenge on level 48.

For gear...
I'm using the 3 items from the box, rare rings and amulet (whatever dropped for you)
Since I'm using crucify alot and we proc arrows on striking and we have queen of blades it is a good idea to get some heavy sources of elemental damage on your gear. That damage will be carried by every bitof damage that you do.

I settled on:
HELM - unique tiara tier5
GLOVES - unique heavy gloves tier6
BELT - unique heavy belt tier2
BOOTS - unique chain boots tier2
ARMOR - unique chain mail tier3
WPN - unique naginata tier5

I socked the wpn with ITH runes and all the rest with TAL runes.

I managed to get that and some more hireling items once I reached level 48. So it was time for level challenge 1.


Doing Level Challenge 1:

I was very anxious about doing the challenge because I remembered how hard it was back in the days but it was a complete joke.
My procs destroyed every amazon in miliseconds. The hardest part was getting close to one amazon before it died being able to apply Shadow Refuge.
All bosses got demolished by Crucify in seconds.

It was probably my quickest level challenge 1 ever. Since some other level challenges are ahead I decided to stay on /players 1 for now.

End of day one: lvl 52


Ennead Challenge:

After level challenge 1 I decided to finish of Hatred. Had no problems doing so. I decided to gear up for Terror after that but to give the Ennead Challenge a try beforehand. So I rushed to the 1 necro in the right corner and demolished him with ease. So I took a "quick" break of 40 runs (baaaad luck) to get my charm. I think I leveled from 55 up to 62 just by doing that runs.


Gearing Up: Nihilathak

Before moving on to Terror I wanted to give myself and my merc a full tier6 itemset. Still using the items from level challenge. I gave my merc the same gear that I was wearing. That had the benefit that I could snap an item that turned out better than the one that I was wearing. For myself I could upgrade every item to tier6 except for the belt. That had to stay on t4 for now. My rogue is using a Webspinner. I really like Miasma.

To do that I just farmed the crap out of Nihilathak. He drops 3 uniques at once and a good rune. It took some time but now me and my hireling are ready for Terror.


Terror: Act 1

Started terror with lvl 66. Finally gems are dropping. I decided to upgrade my class orb with amethyst, diamond, CHAM and apples (that is %DEX,%STR,+VIT,%LL). Currently it has Oil of Absolution and SHAEL runs in it, thus +15% max life and +75 STR.

With all that gear act 1 was a walk in the park. My rogue died to a witch though. Smile
Once I entered the barracks xp started to fly. I found two of the leonardo/tornado veteran monsters on my way down. They took a tad longer to take out but still no problem.
Both me and my merc are insane proc machines. Rooms of mobs has get annihilated once we enter. I know this will not last till Destruction but for now it is a blast. Andariel was dead in 2 seconds.

A sidenote on gold. Just pick up any rare that drops while leveling. Let Cain ID them and sell them. Some of them sell for 40k+.


Terror: Act 2 + Level Challenge 2

I cleared the Sewers and shocked myself after killing Radament that I was already lvl 81. Yikees. The sewers were still pretty easy. Hated the porkchops and those teleporting horses though. They slowed down the rush a bit "lol".

End of day two: lvl 81

Since xp is flying so fast I need to do the 2nd lvl challenge asap. And that is what I did. I rushed to Lost City temple and found out that I'm still missing the Book of Summoning. My rare selling strategy really had payed off since I had banked over 1.5mil already.

I created the Book and spawned the boss in the lower right corner. I moved to the far left corner asap and took out all the mages that followed me one by one. When only the boss was left I gave up meleeing since it was pointless. I just let Queen of Blades finish him. Took some time but was without any danger. I was level 82 by then.

Since that was the last level requirement challenge it was time to steam-roll again. So I got all the missing waypoints and moved ahead. Had no real troubles enemies still die like flies. But meleeing them became quite dangerous I could already tell that. Some of them took 80% of my hp very quickly. So I planed on getting ATMG on my first sacred Bladed Shield as fast as I could.


Terror: Act 3 - Crafting and changing playstyle

When I entered Terror I gathered every Blade Talon and Bladed Shield that dropped. I always threw away the oldest one since I only wanted to keep the one with the highest item level for crafting purposes. Luck was on my side. I found a blue sacred Bladed Shield in Great Marsh Act 3.

Selling rares really pays off starting in Act 3. There are tons of items that sell for 200k. I had banked 2.5m quickly and already 900k on my char (that I dropped in town).
Actually I had gathered any jewel that had ever dropped for me since I knew I would need them for crafting. But all my gathered jewels where not enough to get me a rare sacred Bladed Shield with the Chaos Reroll recipe (keeps item level the same). So I was quite disappointed and gambled for rings/amulets and ... WTF? I can gamble jewels now. So moments later I spent 2mil on jewels and did another crafting session. This time I got my rare. So I bought tons of Oil of Renewal and started crafting. I took the first ATMG shield that came out. It had LaK, +6 ATMG and some other crap stats. I added 6 sockets and put in the best rare jewels that came out by gambling (matching my missing resists).

Oh...since I was already on that vendor I luckied all my gear and that of my hireling.
What was missing was a Judge Claw. I only had a tier 4 Blade Talon but who cares. I just put in a jewel and an OHM and it was done.

What was missing was Wyrrd. So I bought 41 of these and put them in my jewelry. I added some more Thunder Hammer on kill MOs and some reduce poison length MOs aswell.

Actually beginning crafting in terror Act 3 is quite a good choice. I was lvl 92 by that time so there was enough space to MO my jewelry. I added 45% faster cast speed to my claw and was good to go.

Since I had two new skills (Wyrrd and ATMG) I tested it in Act 1 for some minutes. Complely different playstyle. Basically you set up traps in moving direction and watch everything getting destroyed by procs. The playstyle is completly different. It is way more defensive but still competitive in kill speed. Even with suboptimal gear.

So I took my new gear out for a ride and what can I say. I felt like a lawn mower. The only creature that lived for more than a couple of nanoseconds was Mephisto.


Terror: Act 4

Once in motion it was very hard to stop playing. You just set up your sentries and cast Wyrrd here and there and watch how stuff blows up. Additionally I'm really loving the Miasma proc of my merc. That combined with Shower of Rocks on kill makes the enemies move in slow-mo sometimes. But I have to add that once I entered River of Flame I actually had to rezz my merc 2 times because of him dying on his own. Will see if that keeps on happening.

I stopped before Chaos Sanctuary because I needed a break.

End of day three: lvl 104

I entered River of Flame again on day four and made my way through the Sanctuary up to Diablo. All his minions got slayed and his master didn't stand a chance either. ATMG is OMG. My merc saved my arse though. He catched one Firestorm for me and died. :p


Terror: Act 5 - Gambling jewelry

So I started act 5 and just kept one steam-rolling every mob ahead. At some point I had 2mil of gold laying around in town. What to do with that gold...hmm. Why not gamble for rings/amulets?

So I took quite a long break from playing and gambled tons (really tons) of rings/amulets. I later on recognized that I this was pretty dumb on my part. I could have stopped gambling once I had some rare rings/amulets because you can just Oil of Renewal them. Either way money was definitely not a limiting factor. Nearly every rare that you find will by playing will net you 200k gold on selling.

For amulet I was hoping for +4 all skills + doom on kill with other good stats. But I only managed to get a +2 one with failed lucky. But I got a pretty decent +4 skill ammy with lvl 43 Hymn proc and some other decent stats (+33% phy/magic damage, 20% fhr etc).
For rings ... I got tons of +1 skill rings so I threw most of them away that failed the lucky recipe. What I was looking for is +1 skill, -enemy res (fire/lightning), spell damage, life etc.

So if you want to do this gamble for a couple of rare amulets/rings until you have maybe five each. Make sure you char is lvl 110+, this should be enough for max ilvl jewelry. Now just Oil of Renewal those rings/amulets until you got some decent rolls. Oil of Luck any decent rolls them and if they came out shit just reroll again. Oil of Renewal only costs 900 bucks and you always get a rare. Gambling takes way longer. But all in all it is the process that takes time. Money is not a problem at all.

I ended day four at: lvl 110 with some pretty decent jewelry in my pockets.


Will see what the next challenges have to offer. One of the best changes so far is the Gift Box. It makes getting back in the game so much easier.

Last edited by zork on Fri Aug 02, 2013 9:13 am; edited 12 times in total


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Re: Coming back - a journey

Post by Stcecil on Wed Jul 31, 2013 2:57 pm


Nice write up, I just started up again too, so far I have a barb lvl 16, Elemental Druid lvl 40 and a melee necro 11...

just seeing which class I'll like for the long run, so far Druid has hooked me the most, he's the kick ass elemental Druid d2 never had
Quill Bear

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Re: Coming back - a journey

Post by Skroting on Wed Jul 31, 2013 3:28 pm

i usually prefer TU chain gloves over heavy gloves


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Re: Coming back - a journey

Post by zork on Thu Aug 01, 2013 9:25 am

Added day 3.


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Re: Coming back - a journey

Post by Zartok on Thu Aug 01, 2013 10:04 am

This looks really nice Smile And you are actually posting something insted of just doing day1 then quitting posting. Keep up the good work!

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Re: Coming back - a journey

Post by Beyak on Thu Aug 01, 2013 3:38 pm

Only when gift box gives items one might actually need (most don't). Assassin has the best gift box IMO.
You should've streamed/recorded your journey.


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Re: Coming back - a journey

Post by GregMXL on Mon Aug 12, 2013 3:19 am

Is this going to be continued zork?

We mortals are but shadows and dust, shadows and dust, Maximus!
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