[2011] The 12 Labors Tournament [by Quickdeath]

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This tournament has already ended. It was originally started by @Quickdeath on May 2, 2011. The last post was made Jul 18, 2012.
(link to original thread on diabloii.net)


The 12 Labors Tournament

We will be starting the 12 Labors Tournament. Please read the rules again carefully, because there have been some changes since I received comments on the draft set of rules that were posted in an earlier thread.

I am concerned that there will be a lot of blood lost in this tournament, even with the best players in the SPF. The format of this Tournament is different than the SPF norm, and the set of strategies that are required to be successful may be somewhat different than the usual ones. Please, if you charge ahead without careful thought and planning, you may regret it and reach a point where you wish you were playing in a Random Skills Bow-Barb Tournament instead.

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The 12 Labors Tournament

In this Tournament, you are to plan and build an un-twinked character and to quest the character through the game in the usual way. For general questing, there are no restrictions on skills, attribute points, use of equipment nor on choice of mercenary. Indeed, you are granted considerable freedom to play the game according to your own preferred style of gameplay. But there is a catch. A big Catch.

Your character must perform the 12 Labors, which are described below in the section that follows the basic rules. There are 3 Labors of Vengeance, 3 Labors of Power, 5 Labors of Survival, and one Labor of Persistence and they are designed with an intent to be highly challenging - especially when considered as a set of challenges to be overcome by a single character. The emphasis is expected to be on building powerful, well-rounded characters who, during the course of their questing, will be continuously developing multiple sets of equipment that are each optimized against the differing requirements of the future Labors.


BASIC RULES
1. You may play either in Hardcore mode or in Softcore mode. Separate scoring tables will be kept for HC and SC.

2. Softcore Deaths. If your character dies in softcore mode you must:
a. Exit the game so as to not recover any experience
b. If the softcore death occurs during a Labor of Survival, you will be required to re-roll your map in order to maintain the route-finding challenge in these Labors. See the writeup on Labors of Survival

3. By your choice, you may quest in single-pass mode, or you may have have unrestricted ability to run targets as you choose. This decision should be announced at the outset and will also be recorded on the Tournament Scoring Tables.

4. All items used by your character must be found by your character during the gameplay of this Tournament, - there is no twinking, i.e., no bringing in items found by other characters.

5. You are permitted to use ATMA/GoMule as an extended stash for items found within the tournament gameplay.

6. It is assumed that V1.13 will be used by all players. The use of the RWM is NOT allowed. Use of respecs is NOT allowed.

7. You are not restricted from returning to prior Acts for such reasons as shopping and gambling for items, retrieving a Wirt’s Leg, opening a Cow level or deferred use of the Charsi Imbue quest reward. After all, Warriv and Meshif are in the game specifically to support such travel within the framework of the story. However, once you have completed a Difficulty level, you not permitted to return to it from a higher Difficulty level for any reason other than for re-rolling a map after a softcore death, if required by the rules.

8. You may play at whatever /players setting you prefer and change it at any time, except when it is required to be at /p8 as part of the definition of any of the 12 Labors.

9. You are not required to complete every quest nor activate every waypoint but are welcome to do so if you prefer to. Again, the challenge in this Tournament is to develop a character that successfully completes the 12 Labors - the decision of whether or not you kill every monster along the way towards matting or patting a character is a somewhat different question and each participant may make this decision for themselves.

Okay, now here are the special rules for the Tournament.

3 Labors of Vengeance

The Labors of Vengeance are to be performed against Normal Diablo, Nightmare Lord DeSeis, and Hell Lister at the time when you first encounter them in the normal course of questing.

Wirt's Revenge
Kill Normal Diablo while wielding a Wirt's leg. Even for casters, the killing blow should be accomplished by striking with the Leg.

Decease DeSeis -Revenge of the A2 Merc
You must avenge the genocide of A2 mercs by the Iron Maiden aura of Oblivion Knights that has occurred in previous versions of D2! In NM difficulty you must use an A2 Merc when facing Lord DeSeis, and your Merc must be armed with a 6-socket weapon that has DeSeis's name on it - spelled out in Runes!
D = Dol
E = El, Eld or Eth
S = Sol, Shael or (improbably) Sur
I = Ith or (improbably) Io

Your A2 Merc should strike the killing blow on Lord Deseis with his runed DeSeis weapon. A sincere attempt on your part to have your Merc strike the killing blow is sufficient, in the event that DeSeis accidently becomes…. um…. prematurely deceased.

EDIT: Because weapons are capped at 4os in NM, the above rule is modified: your A2 Merc's weapon should have the word SEIS spelled in it with runes.

Clarification: In the unlikely event that you are missing some of the above runes at this point in the game, you should proceed with the Decease DeSeis Labor on a best efforts basis, leaving open-sockets where the missing runes would have gone in your Merc’s weapon.

Blister Lister
You must exact vengeance against Hell Lister for his role in making Baal-running so unattractive for Magic Finding! On /P8 setting, you must face Hell Lister and kill him. The armor, jewelry and weapon that you are equipped with when fighting Hell Lister must have at least +200% MF. You are advised to plan ahead for this requirement. If, for whatever reason, you are unable to equip yourself with at least +200% Magic Find, then you must face Lister naked except for a belt, and any combination of weapon(s) and shield that you choose. Again, please plan ahead.

Note: You are allowed to clear the Throne of Destruction of all other monsters, including Lister’s Minions, with no restrictions on your equipment, before using a teleport scroll to return to town and equipping your +200% MF gear.

3 Labors of Power
These Labors will test your Hero's power and courage. They must be accomplished on /P8 and you may not use a portal or waypoint to TP back to town until the test is complete. These Labors must be performed at the point in your character’s Quest when he would naturally encounter and fight these adversaries.

Kill Duriel (N)
On /P8, kill Duriel in Normal difficulty without using a TP scroll to escape and reload.

Kill Ancient Kaa (NM)
On /P8, you must kill Ancient Kaa on Nightmare Difficulty without using a TP scroll or waystation to escape and reload. For this one test, because you are facing a Lightning Enchanted Boss, you must outfit in non-metallic (leather or wooden) armor and use a non-metallic weapon. There are no equipment restrictions on your Merc, however.

Allowable non-metallic armor and weapons for use by your character in this Labor includes any grade of the following base items and their Exceptional and Elite versions:

Gloves, Boots, and Body Armor: Quilted, Leather, Heavy Leather and Studded Leather variants
Shields: Small, Bone and Spiked Shields, the Paladin Heraldic and Zakarum Shields, and all Necro Shrunken Heads
Helms: Cap, Bone Helm, all Circlets and Coronas, all Druid Pelts and all non-metal Barb helms
Belts: All except Plated Belts
All Amulets and Rings are allowed

All wands, staves, scepters, orbs, bows and cross-bows
All clubs, specifically the Club and Spiked Club
Crystal Sword

Clarification: You are allowed to clear the False Tomb of other monsters in your normal gear, TP away, get into your non-metallic gear, and then return to battle with Ancient Kaa.

Hell Ancients
The ultimate test: Defeat the Hell Ancients on /P8. There is to be no re-rolling and no escape using a TP scroll. This a death-cage match involving your character, your merc and any summons against Korlic, Talic and Madawc.

This Labor involves no restrictions of any kind on skills, equipment or Mercs.

Labor of Persistence

There is one Labor of Persistence.

Overpower the Towers
Destroy one (1) Fire Tower in Normal Difficulty, two (2) Fire Towers in NM, and all the Fire Towers in Hell. Note: Fire Towers are found in the A2 Lost City area and in the A2 Valley of the Snakes guarding the entrance to the Claw Viper Temple. For this labor, there are no restrictions on equipment, skills or /players setting.

For each difficulty level, you must kill the required number of fire towers prior to entering the Claw Viper Temple for the first time.

5 Labors of Survival
These Labors require you to travel and accomplish a goal without actively attacking any monsters. The first Labor of Survival is with your newly created character but for the other Survival labors you should use a combination of speed, defense/res, blocking, Monster AI skills, passive chilling and healing to survive. The intent is that your character not kill any monsters during a Labor of Survival.

The only Summons that are allowed during a Labor of Survival are Clay Golem, Decoy, Ravens, Carrion Vine, Solar Creeper and any of the three Druid Spirits. Bonewall, bone prison, and passive attacks such as shiver armor and the Holy Frost Aura are also allowed. A lvl 1 Warcry and a lvl 1 Mindblast are both allowed but must have no augmentation from + skills. A Paladin may use the Conversion skill with a very low-damage weapon. An Assassin’s Traps and the Sorceress’ Hydra are not allowed.

A3 Mercs are not allowed on Labors of Survival; other Mercs are allowed but must be stripped of their weapons and any armor that augments their attack damage.

For any of the Survival Labors, if you suffer a soft-core death during a Labor, you must re-roll your map before attempting the Labor again.

Stealth on the Moors
As the first actions of your brand new character, perform the following three actions in this order without attacking a monster:
- Find and activate the special chest in the house on Blood Moors. You may equip yourself from this chest and from any other Blood Moors’ chest or non-monster object that you find.
- Speak to Flavie and activate the Cold Plains WP.
- Sneak through the Den of Evil, and with your character’s very first blow, strike Corpsefire.

Deathtrap in Drifter Cavern
In Normal difficulty, this Labor of Survival begins when your character enters the Glacial Trail for the first time. You must travel through the Glacial Trail (without actively attacking any monsters, per the rules stated above) and locate the entrance to the Drifter Cavern. You must then descend to Drifter Cavern and travel to the Sparkly Chest. Once you have activated the Sparkly Chest, you are no longer restricted from attacking monsters. You may turn and fight or retreat to town.

During the course of this Labor, Teleport scrolls and the skills “Teleport” and “Jump” may be used by any character while in the Glacial Trail, but may NOT be used in the Drifter Cavern until the Drifter Cavern Sparkly Chest is activated.

Dark Passage
On NM difficulty, your test begins when you leave the Stony Fields and enter the Underground Passage for the first time. You must travel through the Underground Passage without actively attacking a monster and emerge in the Dark Woods. There are no restrictions on the use of teleport scrolls or the Teleport and Jump skills in this labor.

A Caress for Andariel
On Hell difficulty, this Labor begins by teleporting from the Rogue Encampment Waystation to the Catacombs Level 2 Waystation. You must teleport to the Catacombs Level 2 Waypoint after a save and exit such that Level 2 Catacombs has a full complement of monsters. You may have previously mapped out Catacombs Level 2 in the course of activating its teleport station but must not have descended to levels 3 or 4 of the Catacombs.

You must depart from the Catacombs Level 2 Waypoint, descend to Catacombs Level 3 and then to Catacombs Level 4 without striking a monster. You must continue traveling through Level 4 to Andariel. Once arriving at Andariel, you must “caress” her, i.e., you must strike her with your ungloved and unweaponed hand. At that point you are no longer restricted from attacking monsters. This may be small consolation, however, as your gloves and weapon are in your backpack, your Merc has no weapon, and more than one angry monster may be converging on you. If you feel the urge to open a teleport portal and return to town, please be aware of the last rule: you may use a teleport scroll on Catacomb Levels 2 or 3 but you may not use it on Catacombs Level 4 as long as any monsters are alive on that Level. You may however, run and/or fight your way back to the stairs leading up to Catacombs Level 3 from and then use a teleport scroll.

Mad Cow Disease
On Hell Difficulty, you must enter the Cow Level. You may not use the teleport skill. You must circle (circumnavigate) the cow level completely and stay alive for 30 seconds without actively attacking a cow. After the 30 seconds are up....umm...lol.... you may do whatever you want!

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Here is the sequence of Labor-related activities you must perform.

NORMAL
A1 Rogue Encampment (Start): Stealth on the Moors Labor
A2 Lost City or Valley of the Snakes: Kill 1 Fire Tower, Overpower the Towers Labor
A2 Duriel Lair: Kill Duriel Labor
A4 Diablo: Wirt’s Revenge Labor
A5 Glacial Trail: Deathtrap in the Drifter Cavern Labor

NIGHTMARE

A1 Underground Passage : Dark Passage Labor
A2 Lost City or Valley of the Snakes: Kill 2 Fire Towers, Overpower the Towers Labor
A2 Canyon of the Magi/False Tombs: Kill Ancient Kaa Labor
A4 Chaos Sanctuary: Decease DeSeis Labor

HELL
A1 Catacombs Level 2 Waypoint: A Caress for Andariel Labor
A2 Lost City & Valley of the Snakes: Overpower the Towers Labor
A5 Arreat Summit: Hell Ancients Labor
A5 Throne of Destruction: Blister Lister Labor
A5 Cow Level: Mad Cow Disease Labor

Good Luck!