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Gore's Warrior Strategies

From Diablo 2 Wiki

This illustrated guide to Warrior tactics was written by Gore in 1998. It was hosted on his site (dead link), and was retrieved from The text is intact, but most of the images were lost. It's hosted here without changes, other than some grammatical fixes and added wiki formatting.

Gore's Warrior Strategies

What I call high level is level 40 and higher. In this guide I don't dwell too long on statistical stuff. It's really more a tactical guide with a slant towards Hell, especially Hell/Hell. If you want stats look to Jarulf's Guide.


  1. Warriors are multiplayer friendly.
  2. Nothing is immune to steel.
  3. Good level of challenge to keep it interesting.
  4. Can make fewer trips to town with the right gear and inventory.


  1. Inherently slower than a mage.
  2. Very dependent upon equipment.
  3. Because of #2 it's tougher to get your gear back when you die.


Spells you want:

  1. Heal - makes you more cost efficient. One blue potion can replenish more HP than one red.
  2. Teleport - a must for telekilling and moving your butt around the level quickly.
  3. Stone Curse - needed for those laggy times when monsters jump around or for extra slippery mages.
  4. Chain Lightning - quick exp for the lower levels and good for certain monsters in hell.
  5. Town portal - I always have this hot keyed since I use Stone OR (XOR for you logical folks) Chain.


What you wear should be age appropriate. Generally you set up like a tank with high AC while you're young and move towards a leaner AC setup with more mana as you progress in level. Mana is always important so don't give up a huge amount of mana to get a little more AC or HP. I've listed the the gear in the order of importance.


Speed/Haste above all else. This keeps the melee monsters off of you and the ranged ones from escaping. The second priority is the bonus to hit. For lower level warriors especially you'll need a good percentage to hit so you won't be missing the monsters. Also, USE ONE HANDED SWORDS since the #2 most important item for a warrior is his shield.


you'll need this to shield block. To illustrate the power of shield blocking let me give you an anecdote. Once while playing in hell/hell I got smeared by a group of Steel Lords. The piece of equipment I went for first? That was my Obsidian Shield of the Tiger. Even with my AC under 40 I was able to block the Lords and bash them with my shield to get the rest of my gear back. Of course I was level 47 I the time. Also at level 47 I cleared hell/hell (all monsters/chests/barrels/corpses killed/opened/broken/groped) without a shirt (think total AC was 42) and without any town trips for potions or deaths. This illustrates how high level warriors can use shield block to compensate for AC. For low level warriors whose shield block lets big hits come through too often go for AC and HP. For high level warriors go for resistance and HP. Remember to boost your Dexterity so you can block at higher percentages.


The #1 priority: resistance to ALL magics. #2: mana. For low level warriors getting two Obsidian prefixes and one Drake's/Dragon's prefix from your jewels is best. For suffixes you want Heavens/Zodiac on all of them. I know getting those combinations of prefixes and suffixes is rare so please get as close as you can without cheating. For high level warriors move one of the Obsidian prefixes from a jewel over to your shield. This is where the AC loss comes in. That Awesome prefix on your shield just gets tossed out losing you about 30 AC. So as a high level warrior your jewelry should have one Obsidian prefix and two Drake's/Dragon's prefixes for more mana.


Why did I rank this as more important than armor?? Well, I wouldn't but for two uniques which are fairly rare: Royal Circlet and Helm of Sprits. Low level is the only time I'd recommend RC over HoS due to the high AC and the great boost in mana. At high levels (and maybe even at low levels sometimes) HoS is the best hat. By that time you'll need less AC and the constant replenishment of HP from the HoS's Blood effect makes up for the loss in mana since you don't have to heal nearly as much. Speed/Haste(sword) + Blood(HoS) just can't be beat! If you can't get these then go for AC and HP.


Get your AC here since that is it's main job. If you can get HP with that AC, cool. If you can get mana with that AC, even better. I'd give up about 20 AC to get a Sorcery, Precision or Stars suffix on my plate. My new warrior has been wearing a Saintly Full Plate of Precision since level 38. With that plate his AC is all of 203, and his dexterity is 121. I could've had about 220 AC with an Awesome plate but I don't think it would've helped as much as the extra 16 dex.


At lower levels a combination of full reds and full yellows should make about 1/3 of your potions going into hell. Try to make the full yellows as big a part of this third as possible. The other third should be full blues. At higher levels forget the reds, and just take the full yellows that Pepin offers and then fill up on blues. At any level your belt should contain 5-3 or 6-2 split of non-blues to blue. The majority of non-blues on the belt are for emergencies, which is what the belt is for. The drinking of blues is somewhat more leisurely. The reason for all these blues is that they are more cost effective than reds for HP. You don't use up a whole blue to heal as you would for red. Also you need mana to teleport.


A strategy taught to legit warriors by the Legendary Slice'n'Dice, the first legit level 50 warrior I've ever known. This technique is used to cut down witches and sometimes mages. When you teleport onto an object you will land beside it in predictable positions. Now with this knowledge you can quickly close the gaps between you and your prey. Here is the priority of landing positions around your target. You'll land in the highest priority spot available (one that's not taken up by another object like a wall/barrel/monster/etc). If all those positions are occupied don't bother teleporting onto that particular monster.


Pacing is very important for a warrior. Don't get swarmed! Krazy_ol'_Koot is the guy that drove this home for me. He had a low AC setup with 224 AC yet he was the fastest warrior I knew. He was fast despite the fact that he never waded into the middle of a room. I make it a rule not to teleport into spots on the map I haven't yet seen (some exceptions for extra weak monsters). I usually use teleport only to quickly backtrack to spots I've passed by or to get to the stairs when the level is done. And also, when you move into a room and 20 witches or mages are firing at you, get out of the room! Some will follow you out the door. Cut these down to thin the room out. It's common sense that if you're taking damage faster than you can cast Heal to heal it then you're in over your head. Luring may seem slow, but nothing is slower than that free trip to town.

Virtual Doorway

You can only hit one monster at a time with your sword so why put more than 3 of them next to you? Use walls, doorways and corners to lower your surface area. Sometimes you can find an object 2 spaces away from a wall, especially in hell/hell with corpses, spikes coming up from the ground, barrels, and chests. The space between the object and the wall is a virtual doorway. Now to use a doorway, don't stand in it. That puts up to 3 monsters around you. Stand one space back from it. That way the monsters stand in the doorway and come at you only one by one (more in a virtual doorway if you attracted a whole flood of them). One example of a virtual doorway seen to the right.

I use a technique I call "sliding" when I see a whole flood of strong melee monsters (Blood Knights, Steel Lords, Azure Drakes, Gold Vipers) coming at me. I prefer this to standing in a corner because even though a corner reduces adjacent spaces to three, this is sometimes too much with a weakened me and strong monsters, and I like to leave myself an out. "Sliding" is using a wall to guide the flow of monsters to you. What you do is hit the monster farthest from the wall so that the monsters standing closer to the wall are obstacles for more to get to you. Make the other monsters walk around the one standing by the wall. If too many get around and you're about to get flanked then move back a step. Kill the one standing by the wall if he is the only one in reach. Here is an illustration of sliding.

Sliding aftermath.

About 10 Gold Vipers were coming at me from the lower left. I never let them get around me. I hacked away at position 1 first to stop them from circling around me. Then I hacked at position 2 when 1 was momentarily clear. But when the vipers started coming past position 1 going for the space between 1 and 3, I backed up to the spot you see me at here and repeated my ordered hacking (at 3 then 4 if 3 was momentarily empty). In this case I only had a maximum of 2 Vipers by me at once and no HP was lost due to HoS. Sliding works well since monsters have a tendency to walk back and forth aimlessly for a while if their path is slightly blocked. Here's another example to the right.

This picture here is of Gory (my new warrior) in Hell/Hell after killing a swarm of Gold Vipers. He was level 42 with 204 AC and 125 dexterity when I took this snapshot. As you can see I gradually moved him back, never letting the vipers get around me and always hitting the one that's away from the wall. I was flanked at the end there, but there were only two vipers left when that happened so I didn't need to move anymore. I didn't have to use a potion and I think I came out ahead in HP.

Oh yeah, another thing about strike order. Use weak monsters to block strong ones. For example: if you're on a level with Cave Vipers (weak) and Blood Knights (strong) let the Cave Vipers surround since they miss so much. Kill only the vipers that will allow you to make a single file path for the knights. This way you only have to deal with one knight at a time. Start killing the swarm of Cave Vipers only when the Blood Knight threat is gone.

Some thoughts on positioning for ranged monsters. Ranged monsters really don't pose much of a threat if you're standing next to them even if you're not hitting them. Advocates start casting Flash instead of Fireball. Fireball hurts like hell, Flash hurts hardly at all. You want Flash so stand in a spot adjacent to as many mages as possible when you whack at them. And witches don't really like you standing next to them so they'll usually stop shooting you and scatter if your standing next to them. If they don't they'll soon be toast. So when you telekill choose a spot adjacent to the most witches.

Here is a group of witches shooting at me. I teleport onto the highlighted one. See what happens. One runs and the other stares at me while her friend dies. The onlooker dies soon after the picture is taken. And I wasn't shot once after the teleport. Two important things happened here. #1, I got two kills for one teleport. #2, I was no longer getting hit. Here's another set of telekilling pictures to drive the point..

I'm hit by previously shot Bloodstars, but see how they're now preoccupied with getting away. First picture, shooting a lot. Second picture, not shooting. And guess how many I took with one teleport? One more thing about positioning when you telekill choose a witch in a spot that takes you away from the most fire if possible.

With spitters the order you use to hit them is a cycle. Put them on rotation. They stun for a pretty long time so you can move to the next target while it's stunned. Just keep hitting around and around until they all die in quick succession.

Another important point I'd like to make. Don't hit impotent targets! Hit the guys that are whacking you first. For example, when a friend is beating on a knight, that knight is unable to hit so go after the ones that are still swinging. When a friend Stone Curses Advocates for you it disables them temporarily so go after the ones still shooting. Simple scenario: 3 mages firing at you. Friend is able to stone 2. Now one is firing at you. If you go after the Stoned ones you'll continue to be hit by the active one. Go after the active one and you may kill them all before they fire another shot. Same theory applies to hard hitting knights. 3 knights. 2 Stoned. Hit the active one. These are only the simplest scenarios to show my point.

Try not to get hit with melee and Bloodstar or Fireball at once. Turn a corner to avoid the ranged attack. The melee monsters will follow. Kill them first then get to the witches or Advocates. I could take on about 3 Blood Knights at once but having even 2 or 3 Advocates shooting me at a distance is a pain since they'd take down my HP faster than HoS can replenish it and the Blood Knights I'm fighting will keep me from casting Heal.


There's lots of lists out there so I'll list only the most important (permanent effects). See a full list.

Enchanted - as a warrior your literacy level stinks. I usually give up on reading after the requirement exceeds 130 or 140 magic. Use Enchanted Shrines to boost all of your spells by one level except one, which is taken down a level. The one taken down is random, but chain lit seems to be the most frequent target. Remember to get level 15 heal and at least level 8 teleport.

Hidden - like Enchanted but for the gear that you're wearing. -10 durability on one item and +10 on the rest. Of course this only works if the items has durability. If you're gonna stay down in hell/hell without coming up until everything is done, make sure your gear makes it back with you. Get Hiddens so your equipment doesn't fall apart.

Quiet - +2 vitality

Creepy +2 strength

Abandoned - +2 dexterity

Eerie - +2 magic

Note: Don't mess with shrines if you don't know what they do! This includes Cauldrons and Goat Shrines. Many take down mana permanently. Also avoid Black Deaths (yellow zombies). They take down 1 hp permanently from your max when they hit.


Succubi: These have no resistance to lightning whatever so even your sorry warrior Chain can kill them. If there are more than 6 or 7 then it may be more efficient to cast Chain than it is it telekill.

Cave Vipers and Fire Drakes: These also have no resistance to Chain. I'd Chain them if I'm low level and they're hitting me pretty hard. Otherwise don't waste your potions Chaining them; they're weak and they hardly hit you if you're a high level char.

Guardians, Vortex Lords, and Balrogs: Sometimes these guys can be a real pain when you get surrounded by them. Luckily they are slow to get to you since they like to stop every once in a while to blow Inferno at you. For these guys all you have to do is keep moving. After killing one if there's a bunch of them around still you wanna kill one that's on the outside of the pack. The others will be slow to follow you. Just don't stand in one spot though. Once you get 5 of them swinging at you instead of blowing Inferno it can get hard to Heal.


I don't have strong opinions on where you should play when your char is under level 20. At those levels I'd say play where you can survive since item quality varies a lot at this point. At level 20 go to nightmare church/cats. At about level 25 you should play in Normal/Hell if you need better items, especially resistance items. If you can get at least 60% resistance to both fire and magic then you may want to worry more about gaining levels. The place I'd go to do this is Nightmare Dungeons and Catacombs. When level 1 Nightmare stops giving you exp then do Catacombs and Caves. An inventory full of blues and cast Chain all over the place. This should get you to level 30 in no time.

Once you get to level 30 do Hell Dungeons down as far as an inventory full of blues can take you. This will give you a chance to find Enchanted Shrines and Helm of Sprits. With my new warrior I did this to get him from level 34 to level 39 in about a week. You get quick exp here until about level 37. At that point you can start on Catacombs and go as far as you can with an inventory full of blues or you can go back to Nightmare/Hell since it should be easy by now. Choose Hell/Cats to level quickly with chain. Choose Nightmare/Hell to level not so quickly but find better items. At about level 42 or 43 you should really be playing Hell/Hell. Of course all this advice is for solo trips. When I play with friends I have to play where they play. This is usually Hell/Hell, but I handled myself without dying much with my new warrior since level 36. It just wasn't as fast as Chaining through Dungeons and Caves was all.


Level 50 warrior.

  • 220 AC.
  • 109 dexterity.
  • 460 HP.
  • 254 mana.
  • 73% resist all.
  • Speed+Blood effect.
  • 201% chance to hit.
  • 164-187 damage.

With this character and the techniques above my average time to clear hell/hell is under 50 minutes usually using under 25 potions.