Basic Warrior Training
The first question in most cases is usually,
what to do with the money you received when leaving basic training. Many tend
to buy the best protective equipment they can get for 100 gold from that overcharging
local blacksmith... I would advise otherwise. The cloak and simple cap you may
be able to afford won't last for long. You'll find - and NEED - better in no
time. But your money will be gone. There are two philosophies that both have
-Save your cash until after your first venture against the evil hordes, and try to buy a decent set of leather armor asap.
-Buy two small healing potions from the local healer.
Both have their pros and cons - in the end it's up to everyone's preference...
Ok, now you enter the dungeons, searching for your first clash with the evil hordes... Heed a few simple things and you will prevail.
First of all: Don't charge blindly into the fray. Hollow machismo like that will certainly kill you. A wise Warrior will seek to be in control of the battle at any time. Don't let the enemy dictate your actions. By advancing slowly you should control how many enemies you will face.
[Technical side note: Dont left click at every enemy you see, especially not if they are at the other end of the screen! Your char will walk towards it and activate more, as he closes... Unless you are well over-eqipped this will kill you in the long run.]
Advance. Watch. Listen. Analyze the situation. Let the enenies close on you and engage them at your terms. Look for a good position. Don't hesitate to RETREAT to one. Retreating to a better position has nothing to do with cowardness. But getting surrounded and killed has very much to do with stupidity.
Good positions are: Next to a wall. That eliminates 3 positions from which something could attack you. Next to a corner. Especially if you just retreated around it. This will channel the enemies into attacking you single file and keep them from surrounding you for the few seconds you need to finsh some off. IN FRONT of a door. Don't stand IN the door at first. This will allow 3 enemies to attack you at once. Standing one step in front of it, you can finish of ARMIES of monsters one by one... Natural choke points. Like between pillars, barrels, anything that keeps you from being surrounded.
A note on healing potions: I use the small ones Pepin offers until very late in my career. Unless money is of no more concern, the small ones offer the better value for your gold. As you should never let your life drop too far, you'd waste a lot from the expensive big pots by drinking them early... I like to gulp a healing pot when my life is down below 50%, just to be on the safe side... With small pots, you're using your money to better effect.. And: learn to access your belt well! If you have to think about where in it your next potion is, in a tight spot you will die. None of the advanced strategies ever has the slightest chance to work, if you don't manage to keep yourself alive by drinking potions at the proper moment.
Now, which weapons should you use in the beginning? The basic problem is: the old church and it's catacombs are infested by the undead... You'll find many skeletons, and as they have no flesh left to cut, your sword will only be half effective. A blunt weapon, OTOH, will even do some extra damage against them. BUT: There are also animals that will attack you. The scavengers and their stronger brethren take only half damage from clubs, but extra damage from swords, so it can often be a tough choice... Same goes for all the winged fiends - they are animals, too... Well, I for my part take a sword, or any edged weapon as my default weapon. The resoning is: The scavengers and winged fiends are usually more dangerous than the skeletons. If I meet a mix of creatures, I'd rather kill the dangerous ones quick and take some more swings at the skeletons. With some practise (and I advise to practise all aspects of your skills anyway) you can switch weapons quickly, especially if you heed my advice to advance with care, if you see a large pack of skeletons advancing. On level three of the church you will NEED a good blunt weapon, as this is the realm of King Leoric and his skeletal hordes... (I'll come to that later)
[Side note: forget blunt weapons or switching weapons once you enter nightmare or hell difficulty... The skeletons there drop just as well from your sword as they lack 100, respectively 200 hitpoints due to an unfixed bug]
As a Warrior, you'll need to constantly improve your weapons and armor. Always look for the best armor you can find. Enchantments that add to your abilities are nice, but you should focus on the best possible protection. Select enchantments that increase the armor class above all else. Same goes for the shield - and you should use one at all times - a good AC is paramount, everything else is a nice added bonus, if you can get it. Only a shield will let you block attacks, that would otherwise hit you. Arrows, too, and even spells, if your resistance is low.
I advise to use a good sword, or other one handed weapon. Axes swing slower, and they, as do Mauls, rob you of the shield's protection AND the ability to block attacks with it. The higher damage an axe or maul might offer is, IMO not worth it. For the helm again, take one that has a good AC above all else. Secondary enchantments are nice, but no use if you are hit too often... In the beginning, you should pick up and sell everything you find lying around in the dungeons (except perhaps rags and bucklers...) to raise the money for better equipment. Conserve your money, by repairing your gear yourself. This will lower the durability some, but in the beginning your equipment will be replaced by better things frequently. Let Grizwold fix only those items you think you will keep for a longer time.
Oh, and something to heed for later: You may wish to keep a set of replacement gear (probably the last set you used, before you found better) in town, for the utmost emergency. If you die and only the recall to town enchantment can bring you back from the dead, all your gear not in your enchanted backpack will remain in the dungeon. To retrieve it can be a pain in the butt for us, who depend most on their steel... A good reason to learn the Telekinesis spell as soon as you can. Retrieve your gear from a safe position, then show those nasties who's the boss again...
I'll not discuss jewelry here - in the beginning be glad if you can find ANYTHING useful... Later on, some enchantmens that add to-hit chance, life, resistances or all stats are very handy.
The choice of weaponry is a philosophy in itself. I'll only mention two basic considerations: ALways look out for two things: Do I HIT the enemies most of the time, and do I cause enough damage to "stun" them, i.e. do they recoil from the shock and pain if I hit them? If the answer to both questions is "yes", your weapon is fine, if not: look for some better weapon that fixes the problem. Never throw items away, that improve your magic skill, even if you are not going to wear them in combat. Use them in town, to boost your understanding of the magic arts and read a few more spellbooks! (Some call these things their "reading glasses"...) Note that these glasses can come in handy in item retrieval, too. Everything that helps you cast more spells will help, once your best armor and weapon lie at the feet of some monsters that killed you!
Some notes on spells: Many Warriors disdain the use of magic. They think it not "honorable", or a waste of effort. I couldn't agree less. I think that a wise Warrior will use any means at his disposal, including all the spells he might come upon and learn in his travels. Of course, one should not focus on offensive spells... We're simply no match for the sorcerors, or even the sisters here. You'll always cast too slow and hit too badly, to punch it with a fireball... But especially early on, there are a lot of spells that will help you greatly. Healing is the first. Learn it ASAP. Use your limited mana and all the potions you may come upon, to preserve healing potions. You will last longer. Don't bother with firebolt or charged bolt too much... You'll do more damage with a sword... Sometimes, ranged attackers can be an exception, but you'll still not be very good at it... Holy Bolt can come in handy early on, as you can take out some of these pesky skeleton archers with it. Thay can really be a pest, they flee from you and make you look like a porcupine at times. Holy Bolt, even at your poor casting speed, can be quicker that chasing them around. And as they tend to stand still while firing at you, you'll even hit them most of the time... Forget Inferno. For it to work, the critters have to be close. And if they are close... *pats the hilt of his sword* The very best early support spell is a decent Fire Wall. Once you can cast one, it can be a great addition to your fighting skills. Positioned behind the door you are fighting in front of, or cast behind you to cover a retreat, it will weaken, even kill lots of enemies before they close in. Later in the game, your skill will probably not suffice, to keep the Fire Wall hot enough to severely damage the tougher craetures. But early on, learn it and learn to use it well. Town portal is a must to make you dungeon trips more safe, AND more convenient... [Always cast a Town Portal in the first safe corner on a new level!] Lightning, like Fireball, Elemental, Chain Lighning, Flame Wave, has it's drawbacks for a Warrior. All these spells can be used to some effect, but face it - you'll not even come close to a sorceror's prowess with them... A Guardian, later on, can be effective to recon around corners, to draw out enemies and to support you with some firepower while you are fighting.
My opinion on training: Early on, as you gather experience, you'll want to improve your stats. But what to focus on? I might be in contradiction to many, but: early on, don't improve your strength too much! Practise your hand-eye coordination, and raise your dex. This will be VITAL for blocking with your shield, and hitting your opponents. Harden your constitution, to improve vitality. You'll last longer in battle. AND: Put some effort into your mental skill, and learn magic, at least to stage 17 early, so you may learn healing, and other spells later. Only train your strength from time to time, in order to be able to use the next better weapon or armor. The only benefit apart from that, is better damage in melee. And that depends HEAVILY on your experience. A Warrior of the 10th cirlce, for instance, needs 10 points of strength for a single added point of damage. Once you are MUCH higher, pump all the iron you can, and get your strength REALLY up.
[Or, put simple: Blocking, to-hit chance and AC bonus are based on dex, High vitality gives more hitpoints and magic the ability to use spells. Str*clvl/100 is the damage bonus you get in melee. As you see, that is only really interesting at higher levels. The only other thing Str is good for, is wearing better armor and weapons.]
Some basic strategies:
I already mentioned the use of proper positioning, choke points and the right speed of advancement/retreat against melee monsters. But now comes the hard part: what to do against those cowardly ranged attackers, that can REALLY ba a pain in the butt? Well, there is no golden way, but there are quite a few things that work. Decide which one to use depending on personal preferences and the situation. Think before acting, and use your brains, not just your brawns.
The most important thing first: Don't get obsessed about chasing a fleeing enemy. Abort the pursuit, as soon as it takes you into undiscovered territory. I have seen many a fresh recuit die, when a fleeing monster - be it a goat archer or a fallen one - lured him into a pack of other creatures. Be patient. They will return. If you activate some other, retreat, and finish off the pursuers first, then return to the one that fled.
Try to use holy bolts, once you know the spell against skeleton archers. Use Fire Walls later, to keep Goat Archers from fleeing (or to barbeque them WHILE fleeing...).
Later, against some of the spell-casting types, like Magistrates or Cabalists, even Advocates, if nothing else works and you are alone, consider the use of a bow! You might not be as precise or as fast with it as one of the sisters, but against those teleporting demons, a bow can be your best friend at low levels!
But above all, practise the art of cornering ranged attackers. They flee away from you - so retreat, circumvent them, drive the towards a wall and then into a corner. Once there they won't stand a chance. It even works against those mages. Once cornered they can only teleport on the spot and will surely fall for your sword.
Be careful about those spitting doggies - if they have a boss they often fire a barrage of deadly spit that can drop you in seconds. A fire wall, again, is your best friend against them. Try to stay JUST out of their reach, and warm up their behinds with it... Try to isolate the remains and finish them off one by one. Oh, STAND STILL while fighting them! Running around among them you'll only end up standing in the puddles of acid they leave behind when dying... [Translation: Use the SHIFT key... see below...]
One other kind of trouble makers are those flying fiends that "Blink" to another spot. Especially when with a boss the can be VERY nasty, surrounding you in no time. Use a bladed weapon, as they are animals [1.5x damage from swords], and some Firewalls to soften them up. When in doubt, retreat (cover it with a firewall if possible).
[Technical note: Not only for them Black deaths: PRACTISE THE USE OF THE SHIFT KEY! Many Warriors neglect it. Stand in a spot, and swing at advancing enemies when they are still two squares away. That way you can "catch" them the very moment they try to enter the adjacent square - seemingly even still one away. This can also work fine when in pursuit of a ranged attacker. Your char will not swing while a square behind, but if you hold the shift key and take a swing out of the movement, you can often catch them, too. And did I mention the usefulness of the shift key in coop games? You'll help those rogues a lot if you don't run around the enemies like a beheaded chicken...]
Here is what I think to be a pretty good leveling strategy:
normal dungeon 1 - 2 over and over till you can cast stone curse
normal dungeon 1 - 4 over and over until you are about 11th level
normal catacombs 5 - 8 over and over until you are 18th level
cats 8, caves 9 over and over till you reach 20th nightmare 1 - 4 until you reach 24th
normal hell 13 - 16 until you reach 30th (here is where you get nice stuff)
hell dungeon 1 - 4 until level 34
hell catacombs/or nightmare hell till 40th (cats for XP, hell for fun)
hell caves 40+ for XP, nightmare hell for kicks, normal hell when you have had a particularly bad day and need to feel invincible.
As a warrior, you are hard pressed for magic to learn new books and or spells. In addition you are very much dependent upon your gear for retrieving a corpse. A nice solution that works for me is to have as your backup gear a complete set of magic adders, i.e.
plate of sorcery
helm of sorcery
shield of brilliance
weapon of sorcery or dreamflange
jewelry of wizardry
Having this set of gear will allow you to read books beyond your base magic. In addition I find that when you go down fighting as a warrior to a mob, it is probably time to switch tactics to magic to recover your corpse. For instance if it was a boss spitter who took you out, come back down and introduce it to firewall. These magic adders will up your magic to the point where you can stone curse everything that brought you down. More on this later.
High Level Warriors
Spells represent the most misunderstood and often
misused element of warrior tactics. Basically put, those warriors who ignore
the usefulness of spells, thinking mana to be totally unimportant, won't last
long deep into the game. I've met many people who thought that way, and even
convinced a few of how important your mana and spells are.
A warrior needs to have a high magical prowess in 3 spells: Healing, Teleport, and Stone Curse. These represent (although only slightly for Stone Curse) the backbone of the magical support arsenal for warriors.
A warrior's best friend in shrines is the Enchanted Shrine. The Enchanted Shrine raises all of your spell levels by 1 except for one spell, which gets lowered by 1 level (if the spell to be lowered is max, level 15, it gets lowered by 2 levels). Once you've reached the point where you can't raise your spell levels from book reading, these shrines are what I recommend you look for! Be sure to carry jewels of Wizardry to help you read as many levels of books as you can before you heavily search for Enchanteds.
HEALING - A warrior needs badly to get this spell to level 15, in order to maximize its usefulness. Its mana cost goes up as you rise in character level, so get it to level 15 as quickly as possible. Discussions on using Healing properly will be covered in the tactics section.
TELEPORT - This spell is a crucial one for traveling in Hell. It will allow you to kill the enemies who tend to run away from you, such as witches, more easily. You need to get this spell to level 8 in order to use the minimum mana per cast. Anything beyond that doesn't improve its effectiveness, so don't bother if you don't want to. Discussions on using Teleport effectively will be covered in the tactics section.
STONE CURSE - You won't be using this nearly as often as Healing or Teleport, but you'll find it comes in great handy occasionally. Just like Teleport, you need to raise this spell level to 8, and anything beyond that isn't improving its mana cost efficiency. Level 9 Stone Curse stones a creature for the maximum period of time, and any additional levels beyond that do not add to the length of the stone effect. Discussions on using Stone Curse effectively will be covered in the tactics section.
OFFENSIVE SPELLS - Don't waste your time! Obviously, these are nice to have at high levels to fool around with, but you'll find that a warrior's low magic stat makes their accuracy ridiculously low. Don't even begin to think you're a mage and start flinging fireballs or casting Chain Lightning in Hell/Hell (note: many warriors will use fireball from time to time to kill some ranged attackers; however, unless you raise your magic stat to a very high level it will be far more effective to use other methods). If you do enchanted shrine hunts, you'll get spells such as Fireball up there in level; just don't expect to use them much. There are some other spells that are "offensive" in nature and CAN help in particular situations, and I'll cover using those in the tactics/tips sections. The ones I recommend you develop are Fire Wall, Guardian, Elemental, Flame Wave, Holy Bolt, Charged Bolt, and Golem.
KNOW THE MONSTERS' RESISTANCES - Yes, warriors, you WILL have to learn the monsters' resistances and immunities. Early on, you don't even need to think about it, but as you get into the Hell levels the monsters will have various resistances and immunities and knowing what they are can save your hide. An example: casting a fire wall on a line of Soul Burners is simply a waste of mana. Knowing which spells work on what creatures can help you separate them to take on one type at a time (more on that later).
On using Hidden Shrines: Hidden Shrines increase the durability of 3 of your items (assuming you're using a shield and weapon), but decrease the durability of 1. This is a GOOD thing, because over time all of your items will eventually raise their durability. However, before you touch a Hidden Shrine, make sure you replace any indestructible items you are wearing with another item of decent durability. It'll reduce the chance that one of your normal items gets the durability reduction.
HOTKEYS - I recommend you ALWAYS hotkey Healing, Teleport, and Stone Curse in whatever order you're used to. MEMORIZE YOUR HOTKEY ORDER! This is VERY IMPORTANT! You shouldn't have to even THINK about what hotkey Healing is; the extra half second of finding the spell could kill you. As for the fourth spell, hotkey whatever seems useful for the situation, such as Chain Lightning in the Catacombs for killing groups of Night Clan archers. I recommend Golem for level 16 - more on that later.
BELT INVENTORY - I never use Red potions on my high-level warrior! Reds are inefficient! Since money isn't a factor to a high level character, you can afford to splurge on those Full Rejuvenation potions that Pepin sells - make sure to stop by his place and buy as many as you can. My belt usually contains 4 Full Rejuvs and 4 Full Manas. You want to use Healing to restore lost hit points because it maximizes how long you can stay down in the dungeons. If you can cast 4 to 5 Healings per Full Mana, that's saving 3 or 4 potions.
For some reason, people give me a lot of flak over this. There's just no point, in my opinion, in buying Reds, when Pepin usually has enough Full Rejuvs to go around. What difference does it make? You should always have enough money to buy them, and they're much nicer in usage than simple reds. If you find yourself guzzling Full Yellows too quickly, you're being too aggressive. Pull back some when facing hordes of monsters. Only buy Reds when you're low on your Yellow supply and Pepin doesn't have any to sell.
GAINING EXPERIENCE QUICKLY - Nightmare/Hell is a great place for high level warriors (up to level 47 or so, when the experience you get there dries up) to gain experience and yet also have the chance to find good equipment. The two other great places to go for quick experience points are Hell/Catacombs and Hell/Caves. One advantage of Hell/Catacombs is that while gaining experience, you also have the chance to find Enchanted, Creepy, or Hidden Shrines, which are great for warriors.
BE YOUR OWN BANK - 5,000 gold is the most you can carry in one inventory slot, right? WRONG! With Diablo's economic system, you can easily carry items that are worth more than their inventory space in gold. The most common "gold items" are jewels that you don't use on your character. Classic gold items would be jewels of the Heavens or such. You can collect jewels that are worth up to 10, even 15 thousand gold. This lets you carry around a lot of wealth without having to lug tons of cash around every game - plus it impresses your friends. :-) Other good gold items are Demonspike Coats (worth around 65,000, more than double its inventory gold space), Good Prefixed Staves of Blood Star, etc.
STEALTH - Stealth Mode involves using items with reduced light radius to prevent activating many monsters at a time. Diablo's monsters are attracted to your light radius. If you use stealth items and use scrolls of Infravision, you'll be able to see them WAY before they see you. Important note: when using items that decrease your light radius, they have to be on as you enter a level for stealth mode to work. If you ever remove your stealth items (thus increasing your light radius) and put them back on, you'll still have your light radius reduced as before, but monsters will now be activated according to the higher light radius you had before you put the stealth items back on (a bug in Diablo). With maximum stealth (-80% light radius), a monster will only see you when you're right next to it. Stealth mode is great for item recovery, mind you...
HOW MUCH AC SHOULD I HAVE? - A question often asked. The fact is that as a warrior climbs in level, he needs AC less and less. A really high-level warrior (45+) can do with under 230 AC if he's got a high dexterity for good blocking. Here's a handy table (thanks to Da O'Toth for calculating these values) to help you decide if you need more or (yes, it happens) LESS AC than you currently have.
Maximum AC Values Needed in Diablo
you can see, it goes down by 2 every level up. Note that this is the MAXIUMUM,
so attaining it isn't everything in the world. This is the AC you would need
to defend yourself against Blood Knights on Hell difficulty. Any additional
AC over this amount is a waste of resources. Also, no matter HOW high your AC
is, you'll still be hit by monsters occasionally. AC is not everything in the
world - if you keep your dexterity high, you'll do fine.
HOW MUCH TO-HIT% SHOULD I HAVE? - Experienced players generally have a "feel" for what a good to-hit% is, but this table of data (thanks to concre+e for these calculations) gives a straight idea as to what you'd need. If you have over the maximum amount you need, you're wasting - you'll always miss 5% of the time, no matter how high your to-hit%. A high level warrior with a King's sword will usually be over these values.
Maximum To-Hit% Values Needed in Diablo
As you can see, it goes down by 1 every level up.
These to-hit% values are needed against Diablo's toughest melee monster, the
Blood Knight, in Hell/Hell. Attaining them isn't necessary for survival, but
if your to-hit% is too far below the values listed above, you'll have a hard
DEXTERITY AND BLOCKING - Blocking attacks is crucial for a warrior. Since no matter how high your AC is, you can still be hit, the shield is your last line of defense before you are injured by an attack. You want to be able to block attacks 100% of the time, ideally.
Maximum Dexterity Values for Blocking in Diablo
Note: You need these values to ensure 100% blocking
of enemy attacks. It's not easy to reach, which is the way it should be. In
fact, 150 dexterity is nigh unreachable realistically. Only until around level
45 will you have a chance of reaching the needed dexterity - and that's exactly
when warriors can start concentrating on AC MUCH less and gain power in other
categories. If a 45+ level warrior can lower his AC and keep his dexterity high,
he can perform quite well! Don't go crazy trying to reach these values, just
remember that even a dexterity increase of 5 can make a big difference in your
blocking percentage vs. tough melee monsters.
Also, "100% blocking" can be a misleading term. If your character is swinging or standing still, he will block an attack. If a monster hits him while he's blocking, he WILL be hurt. If a monster hits him while he's recovering from a hit, he'll be hurt again. "100% blocking" means that you will block every attack as long as you don't get swarmed and you don't move your warrior around
Here's the meat of the warrior strategy guide! I'll cover tactics when facing certain monsters or situations, how to use your spells, and other general strategies.
TELEKILLING - THE GREAT EQUALIZER - Ever been frustrated by the enemies who always turn tail and run from you just as you get close to swinging range? All warriors have. It's our major disadvantage, our lack of ranged attack. When facing groups of this kind, warriors who have ignored the importance of magic really suffer. We magic- using warriors, however, show no fear! We have the great equalizer - Telekilling.
To effectively use telekilling, you need a decent level of Teleport that won't suck up your mana in huge gobs. Level 8 Teleport and above uses the minimum amount of mana, 15, per cast.
Here's how it works: say you have a Hell Spawn annoyingly throwing blood stars at you from 10 squares away. If you run at her, she'll retreat around a corner where you bet there's probably 12 more of her friends waiting for you. What to do? Telekill! Activate your hotkeyed Teleport spell, and cast it when your cursor is highlighting your target. After you right click on the target, left-click so that as soon as you arrive, you'll swing your sword at the target.
As your character teleports, move your mouse cursor to around the middle of the screen to reaquire your target after the first attack, because that's where you'll arrive after the teleportation. As you arrive, click to swing your weapon. You should connect and keep the target in stun lock. You'll always appear to the south (southwest depending on how you consider the screen angle) of your target, UNLESS something is already there that blocks being there.
Another method is to implement the Shift key while
teleporting. Hold it down and aim your cursor in the direction that the target
will be from you (99% of the time it'll be up and to the right), and click as
you come out of teleport. Keep the target in stun lock and finish it. This gives
a higher accuracy in telekilling, but the disadvantage is that it uses up your
other hand, and can cause the "stretch" as you try to hold down shift
and hit a belt number for a quick healing or mana refill if necessary.
This takes practice to get it right. Don't get discouraged if you have trouble catching your target as you come out of teleport, keep trying. Telekilling is almost the ONLY way to kill a Soul Burner without using Stone Curse, because they won't stop to shoot at you once you're chasing them - you'll go clear across a level.
Why Telekill? After all, you can Stone Curse them and finish them off with ease. The answer is simple - Teleport takes 15 mana per cast and Stone Curse takes 40. You simply can't go around stoning everything efficiently.
TELEKILLING IN MULTIPLAYER GAMES - Be careful with this tactic when co-oping with sorcerers and rogues. Don't telekill an enemy they're shooting at or telekill right into their line of fire. Telekilling causes lag in that your position probably won't get reported to them correctly. Be careful and use some common sense. In general, if you're playing with someone adept at taking out ranged attackers, let them do it.
KILL EFFICIENTLY - This is a real "duh" to experienced warriors, but when you're faced with a group of melee monsters, make sure to kill one before moving on to the next! I sometimes see warriors, faced with 3 melee attackers, switch between the 3 as they swing. Finish one off before moving on - that way you have fewer attackers swinging at you at a time. There are three main exceptions to this "rule:"
a) you want to finish off a target that a co-op partner has injured.
b) a much tougher monster than the others has just arrived within melee range, and you need to kill it first.
c) the monsters have slow hit recovery times, so switching between them keeps them from getting enough time to swing at you.
HEALING - Use healing wisely. Healing should NOT be used when in a group of tough melee monsters! That's when I suck down a Full Rejuv potion, and not only replenish my hit points but top off my mana at the same time. Always retreat some FIRST and then cast Healing. A good rule for retreating is to walk back TWO steps from your enemy and cast. Drakes make this harder, as they perform a mini-charge to get back to you quickly. When you're out of mana, you can either drink a Full Mana potion or wait until your health is low and drink a Full Rejuv potion to get both your health and your mana back at the same time.
CORNERING - You don't need to Telekill everything that runs from you. In fact, most of the time you can corner them when you're in small rooms.
Another "cornering" technique is to line them up against a wall.
The idea is to try to herd your fleeing enemies into corners or walls to kill them more easily. Telekill when they get out into the open or when chasing them would only activate more monsters. Also, say you turn a corner and see a solitary Snow Witch. An easy way to dispatch her is to go BACK around the corner, so she'll have to come after you. Wait for her just around the corner with the mouse cursor on the corner. When she comes around she'll be in range for half a second before she retreats; whack her then and put her in stun lock to finish her off.
Corners work well, yes, but sometimes you can take
advantage of obstacles to act as a corner. Sometimes a witch, being unable to
hit you due to an obstacle, will try to come around it in the same fashion as
the corner - and the same technique above will kill it. Look for posts, cauldrons,
and "hidden" walls in Hell for good obstacles.
THE SHIFT KEY - This is also useful against fleeing monsters. If you find yourself chasing them but only being a step behind them, hold down shift and swing at them. You'll catch them and you can finish them off. It's also fantastic for telekilling, as previously described. Another great use is to keep enemies AWAY from you. Aim your mouse in the direction a monster is approaching, hold down Shift, and click a lot. As the monster attempts to enter the square at which you're swinging, it'll get "knocked" back. This keeps them from getting close to you! Also, a side effect is that your chance to hit them goes WAY up, since a moving target is much easier to hit. Don't forget the importance of the Shift key in Co-op games to force you to hold your position.
ARMIES OF MELEE - It happens all
too often that a warrior turns a corner and the next thing he knows, 10-20 melee
monsters are charging straight for him! What to do? Brains over brawn, remember...
Retreat smart. Pull back and use corners. Use the shift key as described above to slow down a horde. The idea is to slowly, slowly pull back. When a monster tries to flank your position and become the 3rd or 4th attacker at once, it's time to pull back - and you only usually need to retreat 2 or 3 steps at most! Most importantly, though, use obstacles - walls are your best friend! Move down the length of a wall (slide down the wall, killing as you go) to severely limit their ability to surround you; melee monsters will "string out" into a chaotic line and actually get in each others' way trying to get to you. Take advantage of obstacles in Hell to use "virtual doorways" to stop your enemies short. If you stand right behind an obstacle (or behind and to the side), monsters will take longer to come around the obstacle and you'll usually only have to face two monsters at once!
Also, if you have a large group of attackers following you, planting yourself in a corner can help, as only three attackers can face you at a time then. It'll help keep from being surrounded. However, watch out! Doing this will eliminate your escape route, unless you can be lucky enough to cast Teleport or Phasing to get away (Phasing is faster casting than Teleport).
STONE CURSE - This spell is used
rarely but can be useful in games where you can't hold an enemy in stun lock.
If you don't have haste/speed or your to-hit isn't high enough, a monster can
escape from your flailing and can become a tremendous pain. Stone Curse these
monsters, such as Lazarus, to make it easy. In Co-op games, a monster can often
wind up "teleporting" across the screen wildly, as the computers argue
as to the true position of the enemy. Stoning them ends the debate. :-)
Last of all, Stone Curse should be used as an offensive spell aid. Since warriors have a really low magic stat, their magic missile chance to hit is very, very low. Using Stone Curse can save you time and mana. For example, Snow Witches are very susceptible to Fireballs, but a warrior will have trouble connecting a shot. Wait until you have a bunch right next to each other, Stone Curse one in the middle, and fire. The splash damage from the Fireball can kill 5 or 6 Snow Witches right away!
FIRE WALLS - Setting up defensive
lines when you see a bunch of non- fire-immune monsters heading toward you can
help kill them quickly. It's also great against Diablo. If you can line up a
bunch of witches all in a straight perpendicular line, a Fire Wall can help
weed them out while you deal with melee monsters. In the Catacombs/Church, casting
it just inside a doorway while you stand in it can kill a large group quickly.
DEALING WITH DIABLO - I recommend you deal with this guy ALONE. Try to isolate him; it doesn't do good to get beat on by Blood Knights while trying to hold Diablo in a stun lock. That said, remember to keep yourself against a wall so that he can't knock you back away from him. Casting a Fire Wall in front of you for him to stand in will make it go faster. In my opinion, Warriors have the easiest time with Diablo, as they can keep him in stun lock if their AC/dex is high enough. Also remember to keep potions on "standby" by dropping them on the ground in a semicircle against a wall; that way, when you pull back there to face Diablo, you can restock your belt by picking these potions up off the ground. One way to bring Diablo out of his lair and not activate the other monsters is to use Holy Bolt - it will bother Diablo, but no one else. Chain Lightning works for that purpose as well; casting it will bring out only Diablo and a solitary Black Knight.
DEALING WITH LAZARUS - Lazarus and his posse always reside in a square room in the same place of level 15 - the north corner (or, if you tilt the map, the northwest corner). Laz and Co. can be tough to handle for a warrior. The first thing you should always do is separate the forces. Teleport in and immediately Teleport back out of his lair. This will activate the four witches - Black Jade, Red Vex, and two Hell Spawn. Wait for them around one of the corners, and either "peekaboo" kill them or Telekill them. With them out of the way, it won't be as hard. You should have a good number of Full Rejuvs on your belt, as you probably won't have time to cast Heal at first. Teleport in, kill Advocates, and be sure to Teleport back out if you need to restock your belt. Lazarus can be hard to keep in stun lock, so you may need to Stone Curse him.
VS. MELEE/RANGED COMBOS - These levels
can be the most annoying - where groups of melee monsters are combined with
groups of ranged attackers. The melee monsters will keep you busy while the
ranged attackers eat you alive. What to do?
1) Use corners/doors wisely. Retreat to thin out the bunch. If the ranged attackers aren't followers, you can simply run into a room to activate the melee monsters and run back out, and wait for them.
2) If one group of monsters is immune to a magical form of attack while the other isn't, you can separate the two groups with ranged magical attacks from around corners. Guardians are useful for this, along with Flame Waves, Elementals, Charged Bolts, and Chain Lightning (be careful you don't activate too many at a time this way!).
3) Telekilling can let you draw a horde of melee attackers to you, and then flank them - telekill the ranged attackers who are behind them, and play a back and forth game. Once all the ranged attackers are gone, you can deal with the melee monsters at your leisure.
ADVOCATE/LEVEL 16 TACTICS - Diablo's
Advocates are the toughest range attacker you can face, along with Soul Burners.
They do vicious amounts of damage with their fireballs, and teleport away when
threatened. In packs, they are positively deadly. Here's some hints as to how
to deal with them.
First off, a dinky little dagger of Haste can be FAR better to use than a King's Bastard Sword of Carnage vs. Advocates. Why? Stun lock. Only a warrior using a one-handed weapon of Haste/Speed can put an Advocate in stun lock. If your normal weapon isn't a Haste/Speed suffix, you want to switch on level 16. If you don't, you'll simply have to Stone Curse every single Advocate or you'll be playing a long, frustrating game.
If your to-hit% isn't high enough, Advocates will often escape your stun lock. What follows is something that I'm sure everyone's done from time to time: you watch the Advocate reappear, head toward it, and just as you're about to swing at him, he disappears again. Process repeats. How to avoid this? Timing.
When an Advocate is firing his fireballs, he's vulnerable. You can often Telekill him and catch him while he's firing to prevent him from escaping again. I find that a good timing is to cast Teleport just as he's reappearing. By the time you arrive, he'll be in mid- fire. You can also time this by walking in a zig-zag fashion, or simply Stone Curse him.
Here's also where a Golem comes in handy! If you've cleared an area of Blood Knights on level 16 and there's just a pack of Advocates left, head in and cast a Golem next to a bunch if you can. What happens is that Advocates will NEVER fire fireballs at a Golem, and that pet of yours will walk up to them and attack. Since he's a melee attacker, the Advocate will try to use Flash to kill him. Flash is just as useless against Golems as it is against Warriors. Thus, your Golem will keep a bunch of Advocates from fireballing you while you deal with other Advocates.
Advocates tend to separate as time goes on. Often, if you enter an area and five to six Advocates are standing in a bunch, just retreat. Within 10 seconds, the group will many times break up, and that can help because their fire won't be as concentrated.
While on Level 16, it is very important to separate the two enemy types. You won't last long battling Blood Knights while the Advocates are picking you off from afar. One way to do this is to use fire-based spells which bother the Blood Knights but not the Triple Immune Advocates, such as Flame Wave, Guardian, and Elemental. Also, a fun tactic is the "Ring Around the Rosie - Run Like Hell" method, which involves running around in a zigzag pattern to avoid Advocate fireballs and yet activate the Blood Knights. Then retreat to a safe place and take the knights on
AVOID TAKING FIRE - When killing
ranged attackers, such as witches and mages, a problem you run into often is
that as you're killing monsters, too many others are hitting you while you're
making a kill.
Happy Feet Tactics - "Happy Feet," involves running in a specific way to avoid taking 95% of the shots fired at you. Used when advancing to and retreating from an enemy for warriors, it can help minimize the damage you're taking while you're not killing something. The idea is to run in a zig-zag line, crossing over perpendicular to your enemies.
You may want to walk a few paces at the edges of the zig-zag until the ranged attacks are all headed to that point before moving to the other zig-zag edge.
One thing to note here is that witches don't always
run from you right away. Sometimes, you can teleport to a position, kill a neighbor
witch, and then pick off a witch who never moved from her position next to you.
Be sure to take advantage of it when it occurs, as you're getting two kills
VAMPIRE SWORD TACTICS - Using swords of Vampires changes the approach warriors take to killing the monsters. Using Vampires plus Healing magically in an efficient manner can make potions obsolete - some warriors have been able to clear Hell/Hell without using a single potion in this manner, using careful tactics.
When using Vampires, it helps to go with a good AC configuration (over one with lower AC but more hit points and mana, for example), since you'll want to be using your mana for healing as much as possible. That means more casting of heal in melee situations. However, try to get the most mana you can without sacrificing hit points.
You'll need to use the shift key more against creatures who like to run away, since you swing slower and they might try to dart off between swings.
MULTIPLAYER CO-OP TACTICS - When playing with other warriors only, it's a cinch to play a good, fun game. You won't get in each others' way, and telekilling openly causes no troubles. Just don't activate too many monsters at a time. The problems arise when you're playing with rogues and sorcerers, who use ranged attacks with bows and spells.
If you hug the walls, you make yourself much less
of a target for the rogues and mages, who can fire out into the open without
fear of hitting you.
Also, a good thing to remember is to STAND STILL. Unless you need to retreat, you should use the Shift key to hold your position when fighting, to prevent you from running around in circles. This annoys the warrior because he gets shot at, the rogue because you keep getting in her line of fire, and the mage because he can't figure out where you're going to go, and has to hold off on his fireballs.
When playing with mages against Triple Immunes, the mages will probably need to Stone Curse a lot. If he's using a Civerb's Cudgel or a good melee weapon, let him take the kills that he's stoned. Don't be a hog.
Generally speaking, however, the whole point of teamwork is to cover for your partners' weaknesses. If you're playing with an Artillerymage (a sorcerer with low AC but powerful spells), you need to keep the melee monsters off his back. You also need to deal with the triple immunes. If you're playing with a bow-wielding rogue, let her take out the ranged attackers while you cover her on the melee. Common sense is what is essential.
As said before, be careful that you don't teleport right into a line of fire. And, most of all, DON'T be the usual warrior who activates a ton of monsters! If you see two Blood Knights headed your way, don't walk up to meet them - let them come to YOU. For, sure enough, there are probably 10 more behind them, waiting for you to activate them - and then you have a mess on your hands. This is why warriors are often called Golems by the other classes...show that you thugs DO have brains. :-)
In the end, however, the single BEST way to become a better co-op player is to play the other two classes. Know how the classes operate in all situations. If you can think like a rogue and a sorcerer, you'll know how they'll act, and you can predict it. Someone who only plays warriors is really lacking in this area, and won't understand why rogues and mages can get continually frustrated playing with them.
ITEM RECOVERY - Warriors have the hardest time with item recovery, in my opinion. Since their major strength is in melee fighting, and they need high AC to pull it off, they're in trouble when they lose their good plate mails.
I find that playing mage-style is your best bet for item recovery. If you've done the Enchanted Shrine hunts, they'll pay off now. Also, if you've kept around a set of equipment (such as jewels) to assist in book-reading, equipping these to help recover items is a smart plan. Leave your gold in town - no need to keep losing half your gold each time you head down for your precious equipment.
Stealth is useful in item recovery. If you can decrease your light radius, and walk one step at a time, you'll probably only face one monster at a time. Use Infravision scrolls to keep abreast of what's waiting for you: if you can see them before they see you, you've got a key advantage. Keep that in mind if you find a Gotterdamerung and you feel that you won't use it, or if you find a jewel of the Dark. Remember that maximum stealth is -80% light radius, which only attracts monsters who are one square away.
Here's where Stone Curse REALLY comes in handy! You should be able to cast two Stone Curses per mana ball without equipment, and with your naturally high damage you can kill just about any monster in the time it takes for one Stone Curse to wear off.
Always walk ONE STEP AT A TIME. See if you activate a monster, and if not, go on with another step. Avoid having to face the mob that killed you again.
Telekinesis is your best friend. Use it when you can see your equipment on the other side of a wall where a mob lies in ambush. You can pick up your equipment without having to face them.
If you die near the stairs, use successive town portals to slowly move the mob away from the stairs so you can eventually walk down and pick up the items in peace. Another tactic is to cast Phasing as you appear on a level; it'll very quickly teleport you to a random direction, and just might save you. Yet another tactic involves WHERE you die - if it's on levels 4, 8, or 12, you can try an alternate route by going to the level BELOW it and taking the stairs up. It's slow, but it'll let you appear on the level that you died without being mobbed.
Using spells that hang around after you're dead are a good plan, too. Guardians and Fire Walls can kill a monster long after you've died...
Mob specific strategies
Drakes - take them at a choke point. If there is no choke, get in a corner. If there is no corner, at least get against a wall.
Balrog - hit them open field, but don't get surrounded. If you have any kind of fire resistance, you can laugh at the inferno.
Fallen Ones - Pop one, they all flee. Pick up gold, and by the time you have the gold, they are back. Pop another, repeat. Don't chase them. Don't let them all hit simultaneously - advance to meet one.
Wings - firewall them. Every time they hit the ground, they are healing. If they are immune to fire, take them at a corner where you can pin them and restrict the number pounding you.
Clan/Goatmen - Use doorway choke on melee type. Firewall, fireball or use corner tactics on the archers. Telekill also works on goat archers
Hidden - These things are annoying, eh? Remember they flee away from you. Make that 'away' towards a corner. Get in a corner or against a wall if they are hitting you. Guardian is great for solo play here, as the guardian will track them while they are hidden.
Chargers - close with them. Keep them within about 4 squares and they will not charge. Prevent them from having a long line of sight on you. If you hear them roar, *immediately* dodge perpendicular to the line of charge. After they pass, nail them while they are stunned next to the object which they charged into.
Knights - Fight a retreat to a choke point. A knight coming at you from the front will sometimes try to flank you. Knights pause when they chase, which is why a retreating action works well.
Wizards - Herd them into a corner. Use the shift quick blow technique. Use one blow per wizard and move on to next. Or telekill and move to the next.
Stone - Make them turn a corner. They won't throw those balls at you then. Nail them as they round the corner.
Overlords - Slow, but pack a wallop. You can run circles about them. Hit, flank, hit, flank, ...
Scavengers - hit the one which is not eating on a corpse. Retreat to corpses and they will be distracted.
Skeletons - Break out that mace. I don't care if you have a kings sword of haste - a simple club is probably better. Horrors move fast and hit frequently. Use chokes with them. For the bows, turn a corner to get all the other melee stuff out first, then charge the bows (use shield).
Spitters - Make them turn a corner - it keeps them from spitting. If you notice you are grunting a lot, move off the square you are standing. Spitters hit frequently so limit the number you take by using choke points. Boss spitters will probably kill you more than any other mob in the labyrinth. Use firewall/stone curse on bosses.
Storms - make them turn a corner to get to you. If they are sitting beyond a lava lake, use firewall on them. Storms hit frequently.
Familiars - annoying little bats. Just keep swinging. Be thankful you are not some low AC wizard. Put on that lightning resistance adder for the familiars. Keep on the move to stop the charging familiars.
Witches - use cornering tactics and fireball/firewall. Make them turn a corner. Duck into the large room and right back out around the corner. Telekill or make them come to corner, then swat them hard.
Zombies - only one to worry about is black death which drains you 1 hp every time it hits you. If you have low AC, just leave them behind. They are slow. If you must engage them, swing once, and retreat before they get a return blow.