Quest: Cube Grail, v1

Swamigoon

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I'm starting a new project: to use every single Horadric Cube recipe at least once.

There is an almost complete list of recipes at The Arreat Summit. Now there are various ways to count transmutation recipes. For example: the recipe to transmute three identical lower grade gems/skulls to get one higher grade gem/skull of the same color. Is this one recipe, or is this (4 grades times seven gems/skulls equals) 28 different recipes? I'm counting these as one recipe, even though it's very likely I will eventually exercise all 28 of these transmutations at least once.

For this endeavor, I have created a checklist of 117 recipes, attached here as CubeGrail.txt. It's a CSV file, suitable for a text editor or spreadsheet application. I have (somewhat arbitrarily) partitioned the recipes into six categories:
  1. quest formulas (4) - recipes that allow quest rewards or game progress - Horadric Staff, Khalim's Will, Cow Portal, and Token of Absolution (which duplicates one of Akara's quest rewards).
  2. item formulas (7) - these create various items which are different than the input ingredients - ring from amulets, arrows from bolts, savage polearm, etc.
  3. repair formulas (5) - these take an input item and repair it, recharge it, or empty its occupied sockets, without otherwise magically improving it.
  4. upgrade formulas (33) - these take an input item and magically improve it in some way - reroll it, upgrade it, add sockets to it, etc.
    • Note: there are two upgrade recipes that produce full rejuvenation potions - one with three ingredients, and another with seven ingredients. I'm counting these as separate recipes.
    • Also note: there are three upgrade recipes that produce a socketed magic weapon - two that reroll a magic weapon and add sockets, and one that rerolls a socketed weapon and adds magic. I'm counting these as separate recipes.
  5. craft formulas (36) - these take an input magic item and give it several new properties, some predictable and some random.
  6. rune formulas (32) - these combine runes into runes of higher rarity.
There is a column in the CSV file for checking off recipes as they are used.

Most of these formulas should be pretty easy to check off as soon as I get the first cube in normal Act II, but others will be very difficult to get without lots of grinding and farming. I will probably need several characters, suitable for farming a variety of targets - gem shrines for perfect gems; Countess, LK, Travincal, and area 85s for runes; NM Andariel for Stones of Jordan; Hell Act bosses for essences, etc. Also, for most formulas, I don't really want to just use a formula and immediately stash and discard its result. In other words, where possible, I won't waste anything made by the cube. I will turn bolts into arrows because I really need the ammunition. I'll craft a jade ring because I really need the poison resistance. I'll recharge an item because I ran out of spell charges and I really want to use more. I'll turn a low quality item into a level 1 normal item because I really want staffmods on it that would not happen in any other way. The exception to this rule will be high runes - those will almost certainly need to be "wasted" in order to transmute them into higher runes, no matter how tempting those high-rune runewords might be.

I'm starting from scratch with a new GoMule project, so... here goes!
 

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WoRG

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LOL, not just high runes....its hard to believe one would ever need to cube three Iths for a Tal! :ROFLMAO:

WoRG
 

Swamigoon

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Starting off with a good old tried-and-true SC skeleton raiser.
A.png
Going with /players 8. Notable finds in Act I: a Cleglaw's Claw set small shield in the black marsh, another in the tower, an Eth rune from the Countess, and a Dimoak's Hew unique bardiche in the Tamoe highlands. Found and GoMule'd lots of chips and several jewels, and Andy dropped junk and an amethyst. A short time later, Swamp obtained his cube.
A01.png
Code:
Progress: 0 recipes completed, 117 recipes left.
 
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Swamigoon

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Started off with some "low hanging fruit" transmutations, using stuff stashed from act 1.
3 ingredient fat purple: A02.png A02r.png
upgrade 3 chips:A03.png A03r.png
ring from amulets:A04.pngA04r.png Nice! Swamp put this on his finger right away.
amulet from rings:A05.pngA05r.png Well, at least it has no rlvl; I'll GoMule it and put it on the next new character.
Swamp was using a crossbow through the Lost City, and to my surprise, he actually ran out of ammunition during a skirmish with Dark Elder and minions, so I had an opportunity to check off another formula:
A06.png A06r.png
I briefly considered switching to a bow, to get into a situation where I could use the other ammunition recipe. But then Fangskin dropped a Witherstring unique hunter's bow. Swamp happily equipped it, but since it never runs out of ammo, there will be no opportunity to check off the arrows recipe for a little while.

Before he got the cube, on the way to dispatch Radament, the sewers had been pretty generous with runes, so I knocked off a few of those.
Tir: A07.pngA07r.png; Eth: A08.pngA08r.png; Ith: A09.pngA09r.png
Not long afterward, it was time to wrap up act 2:
A10.png A10r.png
Code:
Progress: 9 recipes completed, 108 left to do.
 
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Swamigoon

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After finding and equipping some more nice magic-find stuff, Swamp had quite a few more notable finds in act 3: Isenhart's set breastplate and full helm, Cathan's set battle staff, Arctic set light belt, Angelic Halo ring, Sigon's set great helm, and Manald Heal unique ring. He also found a few more runes to cube:
Tal: A11.pngA11r.png; Eld: A12.pngA12r.png

As of now, Swamp has achieved the Durance 2 waypoint:
A13.pngA13r.png
Code:
Progress: 12 recipes complete, 105 to go.
 
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Swamigoon

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Meph was surprisingly generous. He dropped an ethereal Sparking Mail unique chain mail (which was given to Aliza the Rogue), a Soul Harvest unique Scythe and a Vidala's Fetlock set light plated boots (both of which which Swamp immediately equipped), and an Isenhart's set full helm (which was GoMuled). Act 4 went pretty quickly, and big D dropped a Ripsaw unique flamberge, and an interesting rare Crystal Sword featuring "adds 2-170 lightning damage."

To get ready for those Act 5 catapults that sometimes fling green clouds, I crafted a black potion:
A14.png A14r.png
I also found that I had GoMuled enough runes to knock out a few more recipes:
Nef: A15.pngA15r.png; Ral: A16.pngA16r.png; Ort: A17.pngA17r.png
Swamp received a Vidala's Barb set long battle bow on the way to the Frigid Highlands, and I decided he would use that to try running out of ammunition again and then use the arrows recipe. He depleted his arrows while fighting Thresh Socket.
arrows: A18.png A18r.png
To prepare for the Ancients battle, I crafted one more potion.
full rejuvenation potion: A19.pngA19r.png
Baal dropped two Sander's Taboo set heavy gloves. Coming up: Swamp is now ready to use the Cow recipe.
Code:
Progress: 18 completed recipes, 99 yet to go
 
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Swamigoon

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Swamp has progressed to NM act 2. Having accumulated 83% MF in gloves, amulet, a ring, and three chipped topazes stuffed into armor and cap, he has begun accumulating S&Us at a slightly faster pace. Uniques: Blacktongue bastard sword, Brainhew great axe, Hellcast heavy crossbow, Nightsmoke belt, Raven Claw long bow, Razorswitch jo staff, Snakecord light belt, Soulflay claymore, Spectral Shard blade. Set: Cleglaw's Pincers chain gloves, Sander's Taboo heavy gloves (yet again), Tancred's Spine full plate mail, and Whitsan's Guard round shield.

Moo: A20cow.png A20cowr.png (Yes, I socketed the leg with a chipped amethyst. Just because. No good reason.)

Cows were interesting but didn't drop much. I might not farm normal cows with this character, but just in case, I left the corral of corruption and its cow king alone. To verify that I can still get quest drops from her, I went back and fought Andy a second time; she provided the unique blade listed above. Also, he managed to collect enough runes and gems along the way to use a few more recipes.
Thul:A21thul.pngA21thulR.png; Amn:A22amn.pngA22amnR.png; Sol:A23sol.pngA23solR.png;
Shael:A24shael.pngA24shaelR.png; Dol:A25dol.pngA25dolR.png; Hel:A26hel.pngA26helR.png.
It's pretty tempting to use the Hel to take the chipped topaz out of the armor and replace it with his perfect topaz, to get lots more MF. But I'm also a bit nervous about Swamp facing great marsh gloams coming up soon, so instead I used the topaz to try the coral ring recipe, and I'm reasonably pleased with the result:
A27coral.pngA27coralR.png
Code:
Progress: 26 completed recipes, 91 remaining
 
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Swamigoon

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Swamp has arrived at River of Flame waypoint. Found a handful of S&Us since last update. Set items: Cleglaw's Tooth, Hsarus' Iron Heel, Milabrega's Orb (Swamp is currently carrying that one), Sigon's Shelter, another Sigon's Visor, and Tancred's Skull. Unique items: Fleshrender, Gerke's Sanctuary, Swordback Hold, Tarnhelm, Venom Ward, Warlord's Trust. I think that I will wait a while, accumulate a few more runes and normal uniques, before I decide how to use the exceptional unique upgrade recipe.

More recipes completed:
A28savage.pngA28savageR.png
It's an okay savage weapon, but by the time I cubed it the mercenary was already carrying a rare bill with even higher damage, so I just GoMuled this war scythe.
A29jade.png A29jadeR.png
A30cobalt.png cobaltRfix.png
A31garnet.pngA31garnetR.png
I found a couple of grand charms in the great marsh, and since I had cubed up a few more pgems, I tried rerolling one:
A32gcreroll.png A32gcrerollR.png
Not quite what I hoped for. Oh well, maybe I'll roll a skiller some other time.
Swamp also acquired a Hel rune at the forge, so I knocked off another rune upgrade:
A32io.pngA32ioR.png
And since Swamp is about to face Mr. eponymous title monster, I figured every little bit of preparation helps:
A33purple.pngA33purpleR.png
Right now the Tan Do Li Ga is GoMuled, but I'm thinking I might pull it back out and use it with the Decrepify curse to try to finish NM Act 4.
Code:
33 recipes done, 84 yet to happen
 
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Swamigoon

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Swamp has finished Act 5 NM. New S/Us: Arcanna's Flesh, Berserker's Headgear, Cathan's Rule, Seal, and Sigil, Civerb's Cudgel and Icon, Iratha's Collar, Sigon's Sabot, Tancred's Crowbill, Vidala's Fetlock, Blastbark, Crescent Moon, Domslinger, Gleamscythe, Iron Pelt, Peasant Crown, Ripsaw (two more), Rockfleece, The Salamander, The Tannr Gorerod (twice), and another Venom Ward. The unique Crescent Moon amulet is the first I have ever found - huzzah! It was dropped by Pindle on one of the dozen or so times I visited his garden to raise up some minions. The Peasant Crown was dropped in the Moo Moo Farm. I am happy to have it, although I'm a little disappointed it rolled unique, instead of as a certain collectible green set piece. As usual, the King lives, in case I want to visit again.

Swamp hit level 71, so I cubed up the gems accumulated so far, and visited countess for a few more runes. Then I decided to see what luck he could have with more recipes. First, six assorted gems for a resist-all amulet:
A34prism.pngA34prismR.png - (not bad, could have been better.)
Then I burned up a bunch of gems, jewels, and runes on many of the craft recipes:
A35casteram.pngA35casteramR.png
A36safetybelt.pngA36safetybeltR.png
A37casterring.pngA37casterringR.png
A38bloodbelt.pngA38bloodbeltR.png
A39safeshield.pngA39safeshieldR.png
A40hitphand.pngA40hitphandR.png
A41bloodarmor.pngA41bloodarmorR.png
A42hitpowring.pngA42hitpowringR.png
A43safering.pngA43saferingR.png (I might consider using this one.)
A44hitpowam.pngA44hitpowamR.png
A45hitpowarmor.pngA45hitpowarmorR.png
A46bloodweapon.pngA46bloodweaponR.png
A47casterhead.pngA47casterheadR.png
A48casterbelt.pngA48casterbeltR.png
A49safetyboot.pngA49safetybootR.png
A50bloodshield.pngA50bloodshieldR.png
A51casterhand.pngA51casterhandR.png
A52casterweapon.pngA52casterweaponR.png
A53safearmor.pngA53safearmorR.png
After this, Swamp was pretty low on jewels, pgems, and shopping/gambling money, so the other craft recipes will have to wait. I did have a few more runes for some rare and unique upgrades, and after a little pondering, I decided on these:
A54rareEx.pngA54rareExR.png
A55rarwEx.pngA55rarwExR.png
A56uniqeEx.pngA56uniqeExR.png
I briefly thought about starting up another character for this project, but I think I will continue on with Swamp into hell difficulty.
Code:
Progress: 56 recipes done, 61 more to try
 
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Swamigoon

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Swamp has defeated Hell Duriel and has found lots of new pretty items. Sets: Angelic Sickle & Wings, Arcanna's Head, Arctic Mitts, Cathan's Mesh/Rule/Sigil/Visage, Hwanin's Splendor, Isenhart's Horns/Lightbrand, M'avina's Icy Clutch, Natalya's Mark (dropped in Maggot Lair, first ever for me!), Rite of Passage, Sanders Riprap (twice), SIgon's Wrap, and another Vidala's Barb. Uniques: Bonesnap, Culwen's Point (twice), Plague Bearer, The Chieftain, The Mahim-Oak Curio, The Spirit Shrout, another Tannr Gorerod, and Todesfaelle Flamme.

During his questing, Swamp found and interesting toy: a rare dagger with eleven level 1 enchant charges on it. He played with it right away, and had fun enchanting the merc and some skeletons! I looked to see how much it would cost to repair and recharge it, then used the recipe instead to do so:
H1rerewB.png

H1rerewC.png H1rerewR.png
Hmm, maybe the repair shop was a bargain? Anyway, one of his earlier crafted gloves had some charges on it too, so I priced its repair, and tried that repair/recharge recipe also:
H2rereaB.png

H2rereaC.pngH2rereaR.png
Hmm, I think the repair shop was still a better deal...

Two more craft recipes are now checked off:
H3safetyweapon.png H3safetyweaponR.png (I had hoped to get lucky with a replenishing stack, but no luck this time.)
H4bloodhead.png H4bloodheadR.png
Code:
Progress: 60 recipes done, 57 left to do
 
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Swamigoon

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Update coming soon: Swamp is at hell difficulty River of Flame waypoint. But first, I have noticed that the in-line screenshot images in my posts are not always loading in my browser, perhaps because I have inserted to so many of them. I see that other contributors often put sets of images behind spoiler buttons, so that they don't load automatically, but instead may be viewed "on-demand." I will go back and edit my posts here to do the same; hopefully that will help my readers.
 
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Swamigoon

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Swamp entered the Blood Moor at level 71; when he entered Act 4, he had climbed to level 80. Now he's at level 82, and has finished all of Act 4 except for the act boss. He did manage to tap the five seals in the Chaos Sanctuary, but not long arfter that he got wasted pretty quickly by a lightning hose while he was trying to evade one of those giant firestorms. GoMule says that his resistances are -80 for fire, -48 for cold, and -46 for lightning. His weapon and every single item he's wearing has a "better chance of getting magic items" mod on it, but I think going forward I will need to arm and clothe him more carefully.

Well, his 290% MF score was quite nice while it lasted. New set items: Angelic Sickle (again); Berserker's Hauberk; Cathan's Mesh/Seal (x2)/Visage; Dangoon's Teaching; Hsarus' Iron Heel; Immortal King's Stone Crusher; Iratha's Collar; Isenhart's Case/Horns; M'avina's Icy Clutch (again); Milabrega's Diadem; Sander's Riprap/Superstition; Sigon's Shelter/Visor; Tancred's Crowbill; Vidala's Fetlock (again). New Uniques: Fleshrender; Goblin Toe; Goreshovel; Gravenspine; Heavenly Garb; Hellcast; Rattlecage; Razorswitch; Rogue's Bow; Seraph's Hymn; Titan's Revenge; Venom Ward; Wormskull. He also managed to find some nice elite runes: a Mal in act 1 (I can't remember whether Countess or Andy dropped that one - I revisited them both quite a few times), a Vex in Lower Kurast, and a Gul from the forge.

He just checked off a few more craft recipes:
H6casterarmor.png H6casterarmorR.png
H7bloodring.png H7bloodringR.png
H9hitpowerbelt.png H9hitpowerbeltR.png
H8safetygauntlets.png H8safetygauntletsR.png
H9hitpowerhelm.png H9hitpowerhelmR.png
H10bloodgloves.png H10bloodglovesR.png
H11casterboots.png H11casterbootsR.png
H12safetyring.png H12safetyringR.png
H13bloodboots.png H13bloodbootsR.png
H14hitpowerboots.png H14hitpowerbootsR.png
Now that he has lots of perfect skulls, it was time to try the weaker rare re-roll recipe. Looking through the stash, I found a wand that looked promising; here is GoMule showing its item level of 38:
H15rare6skullG.png
So with Swamp at character level 82, I figured that rerolling this wand with six skulls would actually increase this wand's item level a bit. Into the cube it went:
H15rare6skullC.png H15rare6skullR.png
How nice! Most of the mods don't seem very useful. However, the new wand does have lightning resist, and it would make Swamp's curses last a little longer too.
That's the update. I'm going to try finishing act 4, but if I still have trouble, I might go have Swamp rerun areas for a while to level up some more.
Code:
Progress: 71 recipes accomplished, 46 still untried
 
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Swamigoon

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Swamp revisited some areas for a while, and leveled up to character level 83. I finally put enough points in Swamp's strength so that he can carry the unique Gerke's Sanctuary Pavise shield. I rummaged through the crafts and rares in the GoMule stash, and found enough gear to bring him up to 70 fire resist, 70 cold resist, 66 lightning resist, and 66 poison resist in hell difficulty. His rare petrified wand also has +1 decrepify and +3 revive staffmods, and with that I had more confidence to finish Act 4. Big D never targeted Swamp even once during the fight, during which he cast decrepify and melee swished the petrified wand at the boss, successfully whacking only about once every five swishes for about a dozen physical and another dozen or so lightning damage from charms. Hey, every little bit helps, right? After the win, Swamp proceeded to find the Arreat Plateau waypoint and achieve level 84. I'm still deciding what to ask Larzuk to socket - suggestions?

New set items since last update: another Cleglaw's Pincers (Diablo dropped that one - GoMule says it has an item level of 94!), Magnus' Skin, and Tal Rasha's Fine-Spun Cloth. New uniques: two Dark Clan Crushers, Kinemil's Awl, Lance of Yaggai, Magefist, Stormguild, The Atlantean, The DIggler, The Grim Reaper, and another Warlords' Trust. While I really like Swamp's new high resistances, I'm thinking about giving him the Magefist light gauntlets, and perhaps carefully bringing back some of his other MF gear, for the rest of Act 5.

Another notable find: during one of his revisits to Andy, she dropped one of the essences necessary for the token recipe. On the subject of recipes: Swamp found a couple of elite low-quality items capable of staffmods, so I tried the low quality upgrade recipes on them:
H16lqarmor.png H16lqarmorR.png (That was a little disappointing.)
H17lqweapon.png H17lqweaponR.png (That was even more disappointing.)
Also, after quite a few visits to the Countess, he was able to check of another rune upgrade:
H18lum.png H18lumR.png
Code:
Progress: 74 recipes accomplished, 43 not yet transmuted.
 

Swamigoon

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Swamp's first visit to Nihlithak did not go well, but I guess it's only fair that he experienced a one-hit-kill corpse explosion fatality once, after giving so many monsters that same experience. On his second visit, I was more careful and he is now the proud owner of another personalized item, his rare mesh belt.

Swamp's first visit to the Arreat Summit also did not go well. He didn't perish, but he had to tap out with a portal. After running areas a bit more for experience and loot, I looked through the stash to see if I could improve his mercenary Leharas. The Rattlecage unique Gothic Plate armor features 25% crushing blow, but also has 40% hit causes mosters to flee. I don't like HCMTF, because I find that my battlefields tend to get out of control and battles last a lot longer when foes run away and replenish themselves. I guessed (correctly, it turned out) that the Ancients would be immune to HCTMF, so I pulled it out of GoMule and into Swamp's in-game stash, and then right before the Ancients skirmish I gave the hireling the Rockfleece and also a shiny new Strength runeworded Stygian Pike. That made a big difference. I only had to make Swamp and Leharas drink two potions each during the fight. Pretty quickly afterward, Swamp found the WSK 2 waypoint, and then I went back to running Pindle, LK, and Countess a bit more, with occasional trips to other areas to keep things interesting.

Set items since last update: Bul-Kathos' Tribal Guardian (first ever for me), another Cathan's Rule, Dark Adherent, Hwanin's Splendor (Leharas wore that for a little bit after finding it), Immortal King's Will, Iratha's Cord, Isenhart's Case, Sigon's Wrap, and Tancred's Weird. And one more awesome piece: on the way to visiting ancient tunnels again, a unique kitty-cat monster dropped a Guillaume's Face! Leharas likes it better than the Hwanin's Splendor.

Unique items since last update: Baranar's Star, Bloodthief, Griswold's Edge, Lacerator (another first ever for me), Moser's Blessed Circle (nice find, but I already invested enough strength for Gerke's, so Swamp will keep carrying that shield), Razortine, Spellsteel, Warlord's Trust, and Woestave. I haven't decided whether or not to stash the Langer Briser and equip the Spellsteel to use some teleport charges. Something to think about. Oh, and one more awesome piece: on the way to Countess, a unique ghost dropped a Harlequin Crest! I chose to use that item to complete Larzuk's socket reward.

I reached another milestone: the remaining craft recipes are now checked off:
H19bloodam.png H19bloodamR.png
H20safetycrown.png H20safetycrownR.png
H21castershield.png H21castershieldR.png
H22hitpowershield.png H22hitpowershieldR.png
H22hitpowerweapon.png H22hitpowerweaponR.png
Also, countess provided the means to check off one more rune recipe:
H23ko.png H23koR.png
Swamp is now level 86, and I think he will attempt to achieve Patriarch pretty soon. Unless he finds improvements on the way, here's his plan: Leharas will quest with his Guillaume's Face, a rare lance, and rare loricated mail, but then face the final boss with Strength RW Stygian Pike and Rattlecage. Swamp will raise his army using a Golemlord's grim wand that he purchased from Ormus, and will wear/carry Harlequin Crest, Gerke's Sanctuary, three of his new crafted items (safety boots, safety amulet, and caster ring, mostly for resistances), and rare armor/gloves/belt and a blue rainbow ring (also mostly for resistances). Also, he will carry in his backpack a dagger he found with some lower resist charges, just in case he needs it to get past an unbreakable PI on the way. He may also carry the Tan Do Li Ga in the backpack, so that he can give Baal a complete cocktail of anesthetics (unique flail, cold necromages, clay golem, and decrepify) to make the final surgery as painless as possible.
Code:
Progress: 80 recipes checked off, 37 recipes still open
 

Swamigoon

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H24PatSwamp.png
The final boss battle was won much quicker than I expected. A tour through hell difficulty cow level also went pretty quickly, but once again I left the Cow King unharmed, so that Swamp may return at his leisure. New set items: Angelic Mantle, Death's Touch, Haemosu's Adamant, Iratha's Coil, Isenhart's Case, Milagrega's Robe, and another Sander's Riprap. New uniques: Crow Caw, another Lance of Yaggai, Raven Frost (dropped by Pindleskin after I rasied my army from his garden in preparation for the cow pastures), another Soul Harvest, and a Spineripper. According to GoMule's Flavie report generator, Swamp was able to collect 68 of the 377 possible uniques and 58 of the 127 possible set pieces. He did not manage to find a single TC 3 item :(, but he did find two TC 87s: a Bul-Katho's Tribal Guardian and a Natalya's Mark. :D He also managed to collect three elite runes (Mal, Gul, Vex), and he also stashed one skill charm (Lion Branded).

I want to continue the cube grail quest with another character. I still want to use a "low hanging fruit" build, meaning I hope that, like this skeleton summoner, it won't be too difficult to level and achieve Mat/Pat on the next one. Based on the gear accumulated so far, I think possible candidates are a trap assassin, wind druid, shapeshifter druid, or fire/cold sorceress. What do you think?

I thought I would see what another recipe might produce for a sorceress. One of my stashed items was a blue magic quarterstaff, and there's a recipe that rerolls and adds sockets to a magic weapon, so I thought I would give that one a try:
Here's the original quarterstaff on GoMule's clipboard, showing an item level of 79: H24socketmagicilvl25B.png
The socket recipe makes it item level 25:H24socketmagicilvl25C.pngH24socketmagicilvl25R.png

I'm disappointed that it rolled only one socket. I don't fancy making an energy shield sorceress, but it might be nice to be able to cast a shield without investing any points in it, so I think I will hang on to it as a potential switch prebuff weapon, and look for a pretty jewel to put in the socket.
Also, there's one normal-to-exceptional upgrade recipe that I hadn't yet used, the one for unique weapons. I was holding out for an ethereal unique suitable for a mercenary, but Swamp found none, so instead I decided to upgrade one of the three Tannr Gorerod spears that I stashed:
H25exuniqw.png H25exuniqwR.png

I think I misunderstood the recipe: I thought it might reroll the variable damage modifier, but it looks like that remained 92%. Perhaps I should have upgraded the one with 99% enhanced damage instead. Oh, well, now I know...
I had already completed the repair/recharge recipes, but not the repair-only recipes. I found in the stash a couple of items that looked like they would be good candidates. One was a unique armor with a pretty low durability counter when it dropped, but a very high maximum durability:
repair cost:H26repairarmorB.png
using cube recipe:H26repairarmorC.png H26repairarmorR.png
Once again, I think the repair vendor had a better price.
The weapon I chose to repair was the dagger with lower resist charges that I carried into the Throne of Destruction. It turns out I never needed to use any of those charges, but its durability could be shined up a bit:
repair cost:H27repairweapon.png
using cube recipe:H27repairweaponC.png H27repairweaponR.png
I think I chose pretty poor specimens for the repair recipes. I will be on the lookout for items for which and ort or ral seems cheap compared to the repair cost, but these were not examples of such.
Code:
Progress: 84 recipes cooked, 33 recipes still raw
 

Swamigoon

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To continue the project, I deciced to start a Frozen Orb/Hydra sorceress:
B0Vinca.png
Since I had a GoMule stash full of nice goodies after the skeleton Necromancer, I looked to see if there was anything pretty for Vinca to wear. This stashed necklace looked like it might suit her at level 1:
B0VincaTwink1.png
Yeah, why did I bother - when she started off into the blood moor, this item really didn't benefit Vinca at all. :rolleyes:

But before long she reached level 11, and then I gave her one of the completed sets Swamp had collected: Cathan's Traps. With this set she became a melee fighter from the rest of act 1 through act 3. I put one point in static field, and in each prerequisite skill of both frozen orb and hydra as they became available. Except for static field and enchant, she really didn't use any of those skills much, because normal attack with Cathan's beatstick handled most enemies just fine.

In act 2, she wanted some shopping money for new shoes, and I noticed that vendors were offering nice prices for throwing axes, so I used the cube to make some:
B1throwax.png B1throwaxR.png
In act 3, she invited Khaleel the Iron Wolf to help her out, and she used two more recipes to make some gear for him:
B2leechsword.png B2leechswordR.png
B3spikeshield.png B3spikeshieldR.png
I don't think I observed Khaleel swing the sword at an enemy even once, but I didn't mind at all - he reliably tossed ice blasts and glacial spikes at Vinca's foes, making her battles rather easy to manage.

She achieved level 28 shortly after obtaining a tir rune at the forge, and that's when I swapped her Cathan's Traps for some other gear, including the stashed Razorswitch unique jo staff. Not long afterward, she completed act 4 (static field quickly turned Diablo as soft as a lump of butter), rescued some barbarian prisoners, and hired Caden (one of the rescued - the leeching sword suited him much better than Khaleel). That was about when she hit level 30, with eighteen unspent skill points to start investing in her target skills. By the time she finished a few visits to the throne room, worldstone chamber, and moo moo farm, she advanced to level 39 having finally spent all of her saved skill points. I think she's more than ready for NM with ten points in orb, ten in hydra, and nine in fire mastery.

Except for a unique Umbral Disk small shield, all of the S/Us that Vinca found were items that the necromancer had already found and stashed.
Code:
Progress: 87 recipes transmuted, 30 not yet attempted