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The dark side (questions)

Tarr

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Jul 8, 2003
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The dark side (questions)

By the dark side, I mean the fact that I'm finally going to play a hammerdin. It's for the 1.11 SC ladder and as such, untwinked. My plan is something like this:

20 BH
20 blessed aim
20 concentration
20 vigor
20 holy shield
1 meditation
1 salvation
1 redemption
all prereqs

That conveniently totals 110 skill points, the max for a l99 char. :lol: Does that look good? I figure I can max one of the BH synergies, or holy shield, last, keeping in mind I'm not likely to ever actually realistically max it. My questions along these lines:

Do hammerdins need max block? If so, how much is wise to spend in dex? I'd like to be able to use a wizspike if I ever got one (the fact he's ladder and untwinked makes HotO unlikely for him.) but that might not be necessary. Do hammerdins spend much in dex?

What's the best choice of merc? I was considering trying an act 3 cold merc if they don't still totally suck, but assuming I went for the typical "aura" what's best? Prayer? Defiance? Or an act 5 barb? Or is a rogue best because in the long run I'll want them to surround me and get hammered? (The puns playing this build will be swift and awful, I promise.)

Also, is redemption/meditation/salvation really necessary? I'm thinking I'll put a point into salvation anyway, because my zealot uses it vs. certain conviction monsters, and for that it's always useful even if I somehow manage to max resists on untwinked eq. Are the other two very often used?
 

Blascid

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All I can say is that a White 4/4 Flyer that doesn't tap when attacking, for 5 Mana, is nothing to mess around with.

"Born with wings of light and a sword of faith, this heavely incarnation embodies both fury and purity"

Edit: redemption is a must/meditation helps, sometimes, but isn't anywhere near crucial/salvation can help a lot around spell casters if your resists aren't up, but I guess that's obvious(It's worth the point)
 

Nightfish

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Max HS last, I only put points beyond 5 or so there once everything else is done. And yes, you do need max block. Especially since you have nothing to gain by not blocking. (2h weapons are kinda pointless for a hammerdin) Get a point in redemption as well. For a merc I'd use defiance, not so much because it helps me but because he stays alive best in my experience.
 
Nov 21, 2004
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Hmm, max holy shield last, it's not as important as getting the synergies maxed imo. You probably won't need much dex, maybe around 110 or so? This is becoz you have holy shield + a paladin's natural high blocking trait. You will definitely need max block with a hammerdin, since unlike other casters, you're in the thick of battle, and often needing to reposition urself, which will require movement. I would go for an act 2 defiance, might or holy freeze, all will be fine. Their offensive side will be covered by concentration aura.


-Slayer
 

GodofWar

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Do hammerdins need max block? If so, how much is wise to spend in dex? I'd like to be able to use a wizspike if I ever got one (the fact he's ladder and untwinked makes HotO unlikely for him.) but that might not be necessary. Do hammerdins spend much in dex?

Yes and No. You will need Max Block as in order to effectively hit a single monster or get your hammers doing immeadiate damage, it is best if you get directly besides your enemies to cast. Out of all casters, a hammerdin will be under attack more than any other (even a windy). Its a good thing theres stuff like "Guardian Angel" (+blocking = less dex) and the stunning effect of BHammer itself. With Holy Shield and GA you will most likely need around 150 dex at lvl 99 to maintain max blocking (thats not exact, but around there).

What's the best choice of merc? I was considering trying an act 3 cold merc if they don't still totally suck, but assuming I went for the typical "aura" what's best? Prayer? Defiance? Or an act 5 barb? Or is a rogue best because in the long run I'll want them to surround me and get hammered? (The puns playing this build will be swift and awful, I promise.)

Well if your surrounded, thats generally a bad thing for the monsters, as 2 hammers in hell results in dead monsters, them surrounding you just makes it an easier task. Although you really dont need any mercenary, mine has a Defiance merc just because you can never have enough defense IMO. Obviously a Holy Freeze merc is also very effective. His slow aura will keep the monsters under your hammers more and prevent them from overwhelming you (although this isn't always bad)


Also, is redemption/meditation/salvation really necessary? I'm thinking I'll put a point into salvation anyway, because my zealot uses it vs. certain conviction monsters, and for that it's always useful even if I somehow manage to max resists on untwinked eq. Are the other two very often used?

Yes Redemption and Meditation are often used by hammerdins after a battle to replenish life/mana. Only one point in each is really need. Although if your playing 1.11 RWM you could make an Insight Polearm for your act 2 merc, which comes with the Meditation Aura (and its extremly cheap, highest rune is Sol).
 
Nov 13, 2003
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Personally I followed this guide. Needless to say, I did not have all of the equipment, in spite of that, I found things going quite smoothly.

That said, I'd max holy shield last. You'll probably need some points in dex anyway (for example to kill things before you get the hammers), it's only later that dex points are of little use also to be able to equip things. Since you're playing untwinked, you'll likely end up putting more points in dex than otherwise, so the need for hiigh level holy shield will be less. As for the others, the maxed vigor can give you some nice speed, for example for if you do some countess runs for runes. A few points in blessed aim won't hurt early on, but apart from that vigor is more useful, so I'd max vigor before blessed aim.

Do you need max block? There is needing and needing, you could probably get away with running naked, but if you don't want to run away all the time, blocking doesn't hurt. Max block is more important for a hammerdin than high defence, since few melee attackers will get really close, and some ranged elemental attacks can be blocked, but not defended against iirc.

As for the merc, I'd go with act 2, holy freeze being the most useful. The merc makes it slightly easier to aim the hammers, by being the focal point for monsters. In tight areas (Maggot Lair) your hammers will be very difficult to use, and a tanking merc will do most of the killing. A freezing merc will make monsters slower and thus make them get hit more by your hammers before they reach you. All in all holy freeze is the way to go.

Redemption is very useful against reviving monsters, and in places where you do need to get some mana or life back quickly. Meditation can boost mana recovery as well for those times you run out of mana. You might be right in what you mentioned about salvation against conviction as well, but the best defense against those monsters is a good offense, get the boss down as quickly as possible with concentration. I think I did not find myself using anything among these apart from occassionally redemption, but then untwinked might be slightly different.
 

Tarr

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GodofWar said:
With Holy Shield and GA you will most likely need around 150 dex at lvl 99 to maintain max blocking

Actually, I know this is a bit off, unless maybe +skills on HS gives a huge block bonus, I don't know offhand. My zealot has 137 dex and maxxed HS, and has max block. Still, I was hoping I wouldn't need that much dex...how much base dex with, say, 5 in holy shield (that would be level 84, around pat time generally) is needed exactly? Since I don't need to use a phase blade like my zealot, I wanted to spend as little in dex as possible. And how much str do hammerdins generally use, since they seem to use caster-type eq?

Not using RWM, yet, but that may change if at least half the other ladder chars end up using it. I'm fed up with Blizzard's way anyway :)

Appreciate the replies and input from everyone so far. :)
 

Rugruth

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As most people said, maxing HS should be the last of your needs. But puit a point on it as soon as it's available to you, it will help a lot block and defense wise.

Get 75 fcr ASAP. Stealth armor, fcr rings, magefists, a caster belt and/or a fcr weapon is more than enough for that. 110 (or it was 105?) is not worth the effort IMO. Once you upgrade your equipment you should switch your armor for GA. If you are using RWM, dual spirit is, well incredible(4s pally shields are found in normal).

A holy freeze merc with reapers toll will assure that monsters dont swarm you. Thats all that you need before you slain them with your hammers ;)

R.
 

Summoned

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You will want around 100 dex minimum if you want maxed block. Strength should be somewhere around there, too, because GA requires 118 strength. So that's about 150-200 points spent on strength/dexterity, leaving the rest to boost your vitality.

Untwinked hammerdins can be a bit fragile because you will likely lack the massive defense that twinked dins have. Tir runes are your friends early on. 2 Tirs will make a huge difference in whether or not you have to chug a blue in the middle of a battle.
 

San

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necrolemming said:
Since I'm a bit late to this thread...

Morphling pwns Serra Angel. :teeth:
Bweh. :D

Yep, 100 dex is probably enough with the +skills you get to combat skills -> Holy Shield, and a Holy freeze merc should do some mean damage with concentration. Even though the Defiance merc has higher defence, it doesn't reduce the damage he takes by half, as holy freeze does, since monsters are slowed roughly by half.
 

Tarr

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OK, so, how about 150 str (for wearing elite items) 100 dex (block and wizspike, if found) and rest vit, with base energy? Base energy is workable untwinked with a hammerdin, isn't it? I'll use blues if I have to, I'd rather do that then spend points in energy.

P.S. MORPHLINGS SUX NECRO IS NUB LOLOL!!1!!one1eleven!
 

Rugruth

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Tarr said:
OK, so, how about 150 str (for wearing elite items) 100 dex (block and wizspike, if found) and rest vit, with base energy? Base energy is workable untwinked with a hammerdin, isn't it? I'll use blues if I have to, I'd rather do that then spend points in energy.

P.S. MORPHLINGS SUX NECRO IS NUB LOLOL!!1!!one1eleven!

Too much str. Max should be 118 for GA, IMO.

I had a lvl 92 HC Cheesadin and with about 110 dex i had full block using GA and HoZ. Counting that you will have a Raven Frost (a must), its about 90-100 base dex yeah. A +10% to block safety ammy with +skills and some res can be good too if you manage to craft one.

Base energy, redemption and some +mana charms/equipment (Raven has 40) is all that you need. Mana from corpses using redemption > mana used to kill them. If you are using insight well, forget about mana forever...
 

Llathias

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Mar 12, 2005
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what are all these people saying? you only need something like 59 str for Enigma Achron Plate. or did you make it in a heavy armor? :eek:
Edit: :uhhuh:

53224 (Serra) Angel is the PWNz0r!!!11!!'[email protected] (really, i loved that card. has style and coolness (1337n355), if not anything else)
 

San

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Llathias said:
what are all these people saying? you only need something like 59 str for Enigma Achron Plate. or did you make it in a heavy armor? :eek:
Normal people don't find Bers or Jahs...
 

SeDnA

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Dec 16, 2004
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It's the beginning of a ladder season so enigmas aren't common, they don't exist do they? Hopefully not. I don't have much advice to give you but one thing hammerdins can do is to make a hammer field while monsters are approaching. then move back a bit and start making another. I don't think they can get past the first field though. Burning souls, Frenzytaurs and dolls are the only things you need to fear.

PS: Counterspell > Serra Angel :p
 
Mar 9, 2005
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why are you using a gaurdian angel? Go for a skin of vipermagi, +1 to ALL skills and 30FCR is better for a caster that depends on cast rate, and it has lots of resistances which is always nice, and it allows you to have less str.
 

Tarr

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Jul 8, 2003
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A lot of the advice seems to continue to miss the "untwinked ladder" thing. :rolleyes: So I think I'll get enough str for guardian angel, which will give enough for any armor I'd want to use, 100 dex, rest vit?
 

Rugruth

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FodderCannoned said:
why are you using a gaurdian angel? Go for a skin of vipermagi, +1 to ALL skills and 30FCR is better for a caster that depends on cast rate, and it has lots of resistances which is always nice, and it allows you to have less str.


+1 Pally
+20% to block (less dex)
+30% faster block rate
+15% to max resistances (impressive)
3xdef of a viper

You dont really need so much fcr, only 75, and you can do a >100 all ress with a pally shield easily (4pdiamonds on a good res pally shield, or ancients pledge on one).


Adressing the untwinked matter, stealth, fcr rings, rare fcr ammy, a 20 fcr wand, an ancients pledge pally shield, a caster belt (cheap), and rare gloves and boots with resist will give you >75% fcr, good res, etc. This can get you all over NM and prolly HELL.

Dont forget to keep that 12%fhr GC's to avoid getting stunlocked inside of a mob.

Hope it helps.

EDIT: Pwned by necrolemming ;)

R.
 
Mar 9, 2005
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necrolemming said:
Since I'm a bit late to this thread...

Morphling pwns Serra Angel. :teeth:
my first turn dark rit, hippy owns morphling

and if you have that much str and don't need resists or FCR skullders ire is better than GA still