In this Diablo 2 Resurrected Beginner Guide I’ll be giving some general guidelines and tips that will help you get started with Diablo 2. This Diablo 2 Guide is intended for newcomers, but if you haven’t played in a while you might find it useful to refresh your memory on some basic mechanics.
Diablo 2 Resurrected Classes | Beginner Guide
The first thing that you’ll need to do when you start the game is decide which Class you’ll be playing. If you are a newcomer I strongly recommend that you pick a class based on your liking and not based on a Build Guide.
The reason for this is that most builds heavily rely on powerful items that you’ll likely won’t be able to get for at least the first 50 to 100 hours. This will mean that you’ll end up struggling as you progress through the game resulting in a frustrating experience. Instead, you should start playing a Class that is appealing to you, and learn about the game as you progress through the different Acts and Difficulties. This will give you a better grasp of the mechanics, allowing you to define your own playstyle, at which point you’ll be better suited to search for a Build and devote to it.
With a good Build, all Classes are very strong at the end game, but each of them have very unique playstyles. We’ll be publishing individual Guides and Builds for each Class, but I want to give you a basic overview of each of them in case you are still on the fence regarding which one to choose.
The Sorceress is one of the most popular characters, as well as my favorite, because of her ability to quickly maneuver through the battlefield and attack from a safe position with ranged spells. She can use Fire, Ice and Lightning spells and has one of the best abilities in the game called Teleport, which allows you to quickly move through the map or escape from any danger. She has a low health pool, which often means that you need to constantly keep a safe range and avoid enemy attacks.
The Amazon uses lances to fight up close with enemies, or Bows, Crossbows and Javelins to attack from a safe distance. She is best used to kite enemies dealing enormous amounts of damage with each strike. Amazons rely on running speed to quickly move through the battlefield, which can be both a good or bad thing depending on the situation.
Paladins use Defensive and Offensive Auras to buff both themselves and allies on the battlefield. They are very tanky due to their Shield abilities and defensive auras, but without enough gear they can fall behind in damage compared to other Classes. It’s worth mentioning that this downside is only noticeable during early gameplay, as fully equipped Paladins are one of the highest DPS classes in the game.
The Necromancer can summon minions to fight by his side against the forces of evil. He can also use Curses to debilitate enemies turning the tides of battle in his favor. He also has access to ranged spells allowing him to stay at a safe position most of the time. Summoner Necromancers require corpses to raise their army, which means that they might need some time to get going on each run.
Barbarians are very tanky and fight enemies face to face. They have access to Shouts which act as buffs that affects both themselves and party members greatly increasing both defensive and offensive capabilities for a long period of time. They can also increase their affinity with most weapon types, opening up the possibility to numerous and very distinct builds for both PVP and PVE.
Druids use the power of nature to fight against the forces of evil. They are sort of a jack of all trades, combining the ability to summon companions, transform into a beast to fight up close, and use magical abilities to fight from a safe distance. While they have access to a wide range of abilities, you’ll need to focus on a specific category to effectively pass through the endgame.
Assassins can run very quickly across the battlefield and use spells and traps to damage enemies. Traps can be laid on the ground and will periodically attack enemies within range, while you avoid attacks taking advantage of your mobility. Most people don’t know it, but Assassin’s can open closed chests without keys which is very useful during early gameplay, and saves inventory space during late game.
Leveling up and assigning Attributes & Skills
There are two different ways to respec your character in Diablo 2, the first one is by completing the Den of Evil quest in Act I (which can be done one time per difficulty resulting in 3 respecs total per character). The second one is by crafting a Token of Absolution (you can find all the information on how to craft it on our Wiki), so don’t be too concerned with making a huge mistake because you can respec as many times as you like using Tokens of Absolution.
Attributes have very little impact on your Stats and are mainly used to determine the equipment that you can use. You should distribute your Attribute Points between 3 different stats which are Strength, Dexterity and Vitality. Most builds won’t need any points assigned into Energy, so even if you feel that you are lacking Mana during early gameplay and might feel tempted to assign points there, don’t do it, as this will be compensated by your equipment in the long run.
Strength: Most equipment (such as Weapons and Armor) has Strength requirements that you must meet in order to be used. The amount you’ll require will heavily depend on your build. I would recommend that you assign between 100 and 120 points to be able to equip the most popular end-game equipment distributed the following way:
- 45 Points by level 20 (Early game)
- 75 Points by level 45 (Mid game)
- 100 ~ 120 by level 70 (End game)
Dexterity: Similar to Strength, some equipment will require Dexterity to be used. The amount of Dexterity required by your character will highly depend on your equipment choices. If you are using a Shield, its Block Chance will depend on two things: The type of shield that you are using, and the amount of Dexterity that you have.
The Block Chance caps at 75%, so if you are using a Shield its recommended that you assign enough points to hit the 75% cap. This will vary depending one what equipment you have, so you’ll have to do that math yourself. Just make sure it’s enough to hit the cap.
Vitality: All the remaining points that you didn’t spend on Strength or Dexterity should be assigned into Vitality. Each point assigned into Vitality will increase your life points, greatly increasing your survivability. You can hold shift to assign all remaining points at the same time.
Energy: Energy increases your total amount of Mana, allowing you to cast more spells. Mana can easily be acquired through equipment later into the game, so I wouldn’t recommend spending points here unless absolutely necessary.
Each Class has 3 different Skill Trees, each of them composed by 10 different Skills for a total of 30 Skills for each Class. With most classes, you’ll end up using 1 or 2 different active skills at all times, so I highly recommend that you stick with 1 or 2 trees for each of your characters. You can assign hotkeys to your spells, allowing you to quickly swap them during combat.
Even if some abilities are unlocked at higher levels, that doesn’t mean that they are stronger. In fact, the most popular skills are often found in the middle of the tree. I strongly suggest that you try the different skills of your Class until you find one that really goes with your playstyle. Once you do, focus on maxing out that Skill and you’ll quickly notice an increase in your power level.
You can save up skill points when you level up, but you’ll only be able to use them for abilities that you would be able to get for that level. For example, if you save up 1 skill point from level 5, when you reach lvl 6 you’ll have 2 Skill Points to assign. But 1 of them will only be useful for level 1 spells.
You can increase Skills up to level 20 by spending Skill points, so you might wonder where to assign points once you’ve maxed out that skill that you love. Most Skills have synergies within the same Skill Tree, meaning that assigning points to other skills will passively increase the power of your current skill.
In the case of Ice Blast, you’ll receive synergies from the following skills:
- Ice Bolt: +8% Cold damage per level
- Glacial Spike: +10% Freeze length per level
- Blizzard: +8% Cold damage per level
- Frozen Orb: +8% Cold damage per level
On the other hand you’ll also increase the following skills by spending points in Ice Blast:
- Ice Bolt: +15% Cold damage per level
- Glacial Spike: +5% Cold damage per level
- Blizzard: +5% Cold damage per level
This means that if you have both Ice blast and Blizzard at 20, Iceblast will get an additional +160% Damage from Blizzard, and Blizzard will get an additional +100% damage from Ice Blast. Do note that synergies are only considered from actual skill points assigned to a Skill, and +Skill modifiers on items won’t provide any synergy advantages. You can check out Skills on our Wiki to learn how Skills synergize with each other.
Diablo 2 Resurrected Equipment | Beginner Guide
Equipment is usually the deciding factor when it comes to determining how strong your character is. Not only that, but some Builds will only become viable if you have all the corresponding pieces, meaning that you won’t be able to try some Builds until you gather all the required equipment. Since loot is random, you won’t have control over the equipment that you get during early and even mid-stage gameplay other than creating Runewords.
Socked Items, Runes & Runewords
Runes are a special type of socketed item that will not only provide unique properties, but that can also be combined with other Runes to create what’s called a Runeword. Runewords can be formed by inserting Runes in a specific order inside certain types of equipment. The Item must be Normal Rarity, able to support the Runeword, and it needs to have the same amount of sockets as Runes are required. Note that some magical items have sockets on them, but even if you put the Runes in the right order the Runeword will not be created and you’ll essentially lose your Runes, so be sure to use Normal Rarity items only.
While Runewords are often referred to as End Game equipment, some of them can be crafted very early into Diablo 2 Resurrected, and should not be so hard to come by. If you are lacking a base, you can check with the Merchants as they often sell socketed items, but make sure that they are Normal in rarity.
Runewords are the most reliable way to gear up your character while you advance through the game, so I strongly suggest that you take a look at the complete list on our Wiki and periodically check the runes that you have and the Runewords that you can craft.
Runes can be farmed by doing Countess Runs. The Countess is a Super Unique Monster that can be found inside the Forgotten Tower in Act I. Each time you kill her she will always drop between 1 and 3 Runes and their level will depend on the difficulty setting. Here are some Runeword examples that can be crafted by farming The Countess on Normal difficulty. Make sure to check our wiki for other recipes:
- +25% Increased Attack Speed
- +20% Enhanced Damage
- +3 to Minimum Damage
- +3 to Maximum Damage
- +50 to Attack Rating
- 50% Chance of Open Wounds
- +2 to Mana after each Kill
- +1 to Light Radius
This is one of the easiest Runewords that you can craft early on, and provides a significant amount of attack damage.
Type: Chest Armor
- Magic Damage Reduced By 3
- +6 To Dexterity
- +15 To Maximum Stamina
- Poison Resistance +30%
- Regenerate Mana 15%
- 25% Faster Run Walk
- 25% Faster Cast Rate
- 25% Faster Hit Recovery
Stealth provides you with Faster Casting Rate which increases your caster offensive capabilities, Faster Hit Recovery which increases your surviveability and Faster Walk, allowing you to quickly traverse through the map. This is by far the best early game armor in the game and is used by most builds.
Type: Staves Only
- Adds 5-30 Fire Damage
- +3 To Fire Skills
- +3 To Fire Bolt (Sorceress Only)
- +3 To Inferno (Sorceress Only)
- +3 To Warmth (Sorceress Only)
- +2 To Mana After Each Kill
- + (2 Per Character Level) +2-198 To Defense (Based On Character Level)
- Cold Resistance +33%
Leaf is one of the strongest early game weapons for a fire sorceress, greatly increasing all your spells and even providing cold resistance.
Equipment Stats to look after
Beside Runewords, there are some general guidelines on the stats that you should be looking for on your items to make sure that your character scales up with the increasing difficulty.
- + to Skills: This is one of the best offensive stats that you can find on your equipment. Increasing all skills, or the skills that you use the most, will greatly boost your outgoing damage. This modifier is really hard to come by, but is usually present on class-specific items like Staves for the Sorceress and Wands for the Necromancer.
- + Damage and + Elemental Damage: If you are running physical attack builds, finding a weapon with enhanced attack or Elemental Damage can greatly increase your damage output. You can always equip the weapon to see how it modifies your stats from the stat menu.
- + Faster Cast Rate: Faster Cast Rate allows your character to cast skills faster. This has a huge impact on offense abilities, greatly increasing your DPS.
- + Increased Attack Speed: This mod increases the attack speed of your character. This is great for melee and bow builds.
- + to Resistances/All Resistances: Increasing your elemental resistances has a huge impact on survivability, so I’d recommend making this a priority over other defensive stats
- + Life: If you find yourself dying too quick even after increasing your Elemental Resistances, increasing your health is the second best second way to increase your chances of survival.
- + Faster Block Rate: Reduces the time required to block a new attack with your shield, allowing you to negate more damage per second.
- + Faster Hit Recovery: Reduces the time required to recover control of your character after getting hit. This can often prevent stun-locks by groups of enemies and allows you to strike back faster after getting hit.
- + to Strength/Dexterity/Vitality: Some items (specially rings and amulets) can provide you with a lot of Attribute points. This can come in handy during your mid-stage gameplay allowing you to use items that you don’t have the required stats to use yet.
- + Magic Find: Magic Find affects the quality of items dropped by enemies, meaning that you have higher chances of finding Magical, Rare, Unique and Set items. Better drops will result in becoming more powerful.
- + Faster Walk: Increasing your walking speed can help you navigate the map much faster, reducing the time required to complete your runs.
Elemental Resistances are key when trying to survive in Diablo 2 Resurrected. Most enemies deal elemental damage and having high resistances will mitigate a great percentage of this damage. For this reason, I strongly recommend that you focus on equipment pieces that provide +Resistances during the Normal difficulty of the game.
You can check your current resistances by opening the Stat menu and looking at the bottom of the menu. Resistances cap at +75%, and ideally you’ll want to max all of them when you are reaching the end of Normal difficulty. Make sure to periodically check your equipment to balance them out and get them as high as possible.
You should also know that increasing difficulty levels have a huge impact on Elemental Resistances with Nightmare reducing all categories by -40 and Hell reducing them by -100, meaning that on Hell difficulty, you’ll need a whopping +175 to max out each Elemental Resistance. Completing the Prision of Ice quest in Act 5 will grant you +10 to all resistances, resulting on a +30 passive increase if you complete it on all difficulties.
Rarities, Sets & Uniques
Enemies will constantly drop loot when you defeat them and at first it might be a little difficult to determine what you should pick up or not.
There are 6 types of rarities in Diablo 2: Normal, Magical, Rare, Crafted, Set and Unique.
- Normal Items (white): Usually don’t have any kind of stats and are only useful as Bases during end-game, but since this is a beginners guide I’ll just recommend that you pass on them for the time being.
- Socked Items (gray): All rarities can have sockets, but only Normal Socketed Items can be can be used as bases for Runewords. The item will need to have the exact amount of sockets as the Runeword as well as being the correct type. I strongly recommend that you pick up and stash away items that fit the Runewords you want to make.
- Magical Items (blue): Have 1 or 2 random additional stats but they are not usually worth picking up since all other categories are better.
- Crafted Items (orange): Crafted Items become relevant during end-game and can’t be dropped by monsters, so I’ll leave these for another video.
- Rare Items (yellow): Rare items can have from 2 to 6 random additional stats and are usually worth picking up and identified to check if they are worth keeping or not.
- Unique Items (gold): Unique Items have unique names, images and attributes. Their attributes are fixed, but they usually range between different levels for example +20 to +30 Strength. These Items are almost always worth picking up and can have unique stats that can only be present on them.
- Set Items (green): Similar to Uniques, set items have unique names, images and attributes. They don’t have unique stats on their own, but will provide them when many pieces of the same set are equipped. It’s difficult to find all set pieces on your own, but you might be able to get them through trade or borrow them from a friend.
- Ethereal Items (Gray): These items have increased stats but can’t be repaired, meaning that they’ll be destroyed when they reach 0 durability. Ethereal Items don’t lose durability while used by Mercenaries, and since they have better stats they are usually a better option for your Mercs.
Potions, Inventory Items & Shop
Potions are huge part of Diablo 2, as they are the best reliable way to replenish your life and mana. I strongly recommend that you always have potions both in your belt and inventory so you don’t have to come back to town.
Health and Mana potions will replenish your resources over a short period of time and have no cooldown. Consuming many consecutive potions won’t speed up the process so try to stay calm and drink 1 or 2 potions at a time. If your health quickly drops and you are surrounded by enemies, Rejuvenation Potions are the best choice, since they immediately recover a percentage of both your Health and Mana. You can acquire potions from the potion vendor of each town. The quality of the potions will depend on the act and difficulty level.
A very handy trick here is that you can hold shift and right clicking and buying on the desired potion and it will fill your entire belt for that category. You can then un-equip the belt, which will place the potions that where held by your belt in your inventory. Re-equip the belt and buy again and you’ll now have a full belt and a full spare in your inventory. You can also hold left shift + left click on a potion in your inventory to quickly equip it into your belt. This is the fastest way to re-equip your belt during combat. The left shift + right clicking function works for any other consumable item such as Town Portals or Identifying Scrolls, saving you a lot of clicks in the process.
One thing that many people don’t know is that Health and Mana potions have different values for each character. For example, a Super Healing Potion will heal the Necromancer for 320 health, while it heals 640 to the Barbarian, so if are going to play a different character, you might need to get used to its heal values.
Antidote Potions and Thawing Potions will not only cure their respective status effect, but also provide a +50 resistance to their corresponding elemental resistance, making them great for some difficult parts such as the Act I Boss (Poison) and the Act 2 Boss (Cold)
The Horadric Cube is a unique Quest Item that can be found during The Horadric Staff quest. The Horadric Cube takes up 4 inventory slots, but has a 12 storage capacity, granting you a net gain of 8 inventory slots. You can safely store items inside without any worries. Additionally, the Cube has many different recipes that you can use to combine different items and create new ones. This goes from creating Rejuvenation Potions, Upgrading Runes and Gems, Creating Crafted Items and much more. You can visit the wiki for a complete list of recipes.
Charms are a special type of item that provides you with passive bonuses by just having them on your inventory. Note that they need to be on your inventory to function, and they won’t work if stored inside the Horadric Cube or your stash.
There are three types of Charms, Small Charms (1 slot), Large Charms (two slots) and Grand Charms (three slots). The stats that they can have depend on their size.
While you might be tempted to retain all the charms that you find, they end up taking a lot of inventory space which will often mean you pick up less loot. I suggest you keep charms that have a real impact on your gameplay to avoid this. Here are the most sought after attributes on charms:
- + Life
- + Mana
- + Elemental Resistances
- + Faster Walk
- + Skill Tree (Only present in Grand Charms)
- + Maximum Damage
- + Attack Rating
In addition to normal charms, there are 3 Unique Charms in Diablo 2 Resurrected. These are Gheed’s Fortune, Hellfire Torch and Annihilus. You can only have one of each on your inventory, but they all provide great boosts to your character.
- Gheed’s Fortune reduces the price of vendors, increases the amount of gold dropped by enemies and increases your Magic Find. This charm is not that hard to find and comes handy for all types of builds.
- Annihilus increases all your skills by +1, provides between +10 and +20 Attributes, between +10 and +20 to all Elemental Resistances, and +5% to +10% to Experience Gained.
- Hellfire Torch provides +3 to a random character Class Skill, between +10 and +20 Attributes, between +10 and +20 to all Elemental Resistances as well as some other perks.
The Annihilus and the Hellfire Torch can be acquired by defeating specific endgame content, and having them in your inventory greatly reduce your Stat Investment into Strength and Dexterity. Having both in your inventory will save you between 20 and 40 stats points that you can spend into Vitality greatly increasing your health pool. The additional passive resistances will also allow you to depend less on +All Resistances equipment, opening up more options.
If you don’t have a Hellfire Torch or an Annihilus, I strongly recommend that you get them as soon as you can afford to. Perfect rolled ones are very expensive, but you can get bad rolled ones for very affordable prices. Make sure to get a low roll when you are starting off and then upgrade it when you have enough money.
Mercenaries can be recruited at towns and will aid you in combat. While they are not very strong, they do help in battle by dealing damage and luring enemies away from you.
Act 2 Mercenaries are the best choice for all Builds due to their Paladin Auras and the ability to equip Polearm Weapons. Being able to use Polearms is very important, because many powerful Runewords can be created on them providing various buffs or debuffing enemies. You can recruit this Mercenary from Greiz in Lut Gholein.
When it comes to selecting an Aura, the Prayer Mercenary found on Normal difficulty and the Holy Freeze Aura Mercenary on Nightmare are your best options. The Prayer Aura provides heal regeneration allowing you to survive longer without using Potions. The Holy Freeze Aura slows enemies around you providing great crowd control.
Mercenaries earn experience at a slower rate, so in the early or mid-game it’s best to visit the town once in a while and re-hire them so they match your current level. When doing so, always remember to remove their equipment, as hiring a new Mercenary will erase all the equipment held by the previous one. Ethereal items won’t lose durability while carried by mercenaries, so take advantage of this, and equip them with the best ethereal items you find.
You can share your own healing potions with your mercenary. To do so, press and hold shift and the right click on the desired potion or its designated hotkey. If you’re using controller, hold down the left trigger and press the appropriate button on the D-pad.
Tips & Tricks
Shield Block & Walking
If you are using a Shield, there’s a big difference on the chance to block based on if your character is either running or walking. While you walk, the percentage chance to block is exactly what’s displayed on your stat sheet, but while you run, your block chance is reduced to 1/3rd of that percentage. This is not displayed by the in-game menu but does have a great impact on your blocking chance, so make sure to be walking while holding a shield against enemies.
Walking is also very useful to help you control your character when you have a very high run speed, so getting in the habit of toggling it on and off will make you notice a difference on the battlefield.
Use Stamina Potions
When you are low level you’ll often run out of Stamina very fast, meaning that you’ll be forced to walk to recover it. Buying and carrying a couple of Stamina Potions early on will prevent this, saving you a ton of time and frustration.
Town Portal Scroll and Scroll of Identify
Having a Town Portal Scroll at all times is a must, as finding yourself out of potions in the middle of nowhere and not having a way to come back is really annoying. I also strongly suggest that you open a town portal whenever you reach a Boss. Portals won’t close when you die, so if you fall in battle, you can use the portal to go back, saving a lot of time.
Carrying a Scroll of Identify can also be very useful, as you can identify items on the battlefield saving you a trip to town to determine if the item is useful or not. Much like Town Portal scrolls, it’s best to carry a book of these in your inventory.
Make sure to upgrade your belt and carry potions
Each Belt has a different amount of potion slots ranging from 8 to 16, allowing you to carry many different potions at the same time. Make sure to always fill your belt when you re-visit town and always carry a couple of spare potions in your inventory just in case. You can press the “~” key on PC to toggle the “always display belt” allowing you to see all potion slots on your belt at all times. You can also store Town Portal Scrolls on your belt, allowing you to quickly use them with your hotkeys.
There are many different Shrines that you can pick up during your runs. Most of these have very powerful effects so make sure to always interact with them. The Gem Shrine upgrades a gem that you are currently carrying to its following rarity, so you might want to have a Flawless Gem at all times in case you stumble across one of these. The Experience Shrine grants you a massive 50% experience bonus, try to kill as many enemies as you can while you have it to quickly level up.
Make sure to get Waypoints
Waypoints are a great way to quickly reach your destination. Make sure you get as many waypoints as you can, as they can be of help your friends to quickly reach a certain quest, or to get where you need to go rapidly.
Communicating in Multiplayer
While inside a Multiplayer game, you can put an “!” before writing down a message. By doing so, the message won’t show in the chat box, but will instead be displayed on top of your character. This can be used to get the attention of players in trade rooms, or to say something that can only be read be nearby players.
You can make your character say a pre-defined lines by pressing the Num-Keys.
- 0 = Help Me
- 1 = Follow Me
- 2 = Offer a Gift
- 3 = Thanks
- 4 = Sorry
- 5 = Goodbye
- 6 = Die
- 7 = Retreat
User Interface and Quality of Life
You can turn the auto-gold pickup function from the options menu under the “gameplay” tab. You can also customize your HUD and subtitle options from the options menu.
There are some additional commands that can be activated by pressing enter and typing a command. For example, you can hide all items on the ground by writing down “/nopickup”. This will make it so items on the ground are not highlighted even if you mouse over them unless you press the “alt” key. This is very useful for melee characters. You can also type “/fps” to display both Frames Per Second and Ping. This is especially useful for hardcore characters, as lag spikes are the easiest way to get killed.
Swap Between weapons
You can have two different set of weapons equipped at the same time. You can quickly swap them in battle by pressing “W” on keyboard, which can be very handy for a second set of abilities or to alter between crowds and individual targets.
Some items come equipped with charges of certain spells. For example, you can find a ring that has 12 charges of the Teleport skill. While having the ring equipped, you’ll be able to use the Teleport Spell 12 times before you run out of charges. You can restore the charges by visiting a Merchant and repairing your equipment, but pay attention that this usually comes at a very high expense.
Retrieve your Corpse
Sometimes you’ll die before being able to open a portal or surrounded by many enemies, making it very difficult to recover your corpse. When this happens, you can save and exit and then join a new game. By doing this, you’ll find your corpse with all your equipment right next to you inside town , saving you a lot of time and frustration.
Improving your runs
Each location can spawn certain types of Enemies, but only certain types will spawn each run. If you are having trouble with an area, try creating a new game as you might find enemies that are easier to handle with your build.
That’s all for our Diablo 2 Resurrected Beginners Guide! If you have other questions about the game be sure to drop by our Twitch channel and ask, or visit our Diablo 2 Resurrected Wiki!