The best way to level in Diablo 2 is to rush a character though normal and nightmare with a Hammerdin or Sorceress as driver and then do Über Tristram runs on Hell Difficulty with a Zealot / Smiter as driver. This may sound complicated for someone not initiated in the adopted terminology of the Diablo 2 community, but we will explain it all below so keep on reading.
To rush a character you need two instances of Diablo 2 running. One instance where a fully leveled and equipped character plays, and one where the character to be leveled plays. You can use two computers, each with Diablo 2 installed using a unique CD key, or take help from a friend. The two characters need to play in the same game and in the same party. The role of the character to be leveled is simply to hang on while staying out of harms way. The fully equipped and leveled character is called the driver and the role of that character is to kill Baal as quickly as possible on normal and nightmare difficulty. The build best suited for this purpose is the Hammerdin or a Sorceress specializing in cast rate:
Basics: Teleport and attack with Blessed Hammer combined with Concentration Aura when enemies are standing at 10 o’clock. Keep attack button pressed until nobody is left standing. You can socket Harlequin Crest and Herald of Zakarum with Ber rune to reduce damage taken. Remember to use Redemption Aura to recover life and mana when enemies are dead.
Stats: Dexterity for maximum block when Holy Shield is activated. Maximum block is 75%. You can see the current chance to block in the character screen when moving your cursor over the defense field.
Skills: 20 Blessed Hammer, 20 Vigor, 20 Blessed Aim, 20 Concentration Aura, 1 Redemption and the rest into Holy Shield.
Weapon: Heart of the Oak Flail
Shield: Herald of Zakarum
Swap: Call To Arms Flail and Spirit runeword
Helm: Harlequin Crest
Body Armor: Enigma runeword
Belt: Arachnid Mesh
Boots: Sandstorm Trek (ethereal) or Waterwalk
Amulet: Mara’s Kaleidoscope or Seraph’s Hymn
Ring1: Stone of Jordan
Ring2: Stone of Jordan
Charms: Annihilus, Hellfire Torch, 9 x Paladin Combat Skiller and small charms with life and mana or resistances.
Here is a video of how it’s done with a Sorceress:
Fast, simple and effective!
To reach ubertristram you need to collect 3 relics / organs: Diablo’s Horn, Baal’s Eye and Mephisto’s Brain. To get any one of these organs you first need to find a set of three keys and transmute them in the Horadric Cube while visiting the town of Harrogath in Act 5 – Hell difficulty.
- The key of Terror is held by the Countess in Act 1 on Hell difficulty.
- The Key of Hate is held by the false Summoner in Act 2 on Hell difficulty.
- The key of Destruction is dropped by Nihlathak in Act 5 on Hell difficulty.
The keys are quite rare drops so you will have to make a few runs to get what you what. Once the three keys are transmuted In Harrogath, a portal will open up to one of three places:
- The Furnace of Pain where you get to fight Über Izual who drops Mephisto’s brain.
- The Matron’s Den where you get to fight the female demon Lilith who drops Diablo’s horn.
- The Forgotten Sands where you get to fight Über Duriel who drops Baal’s eye.
Once you have the three organs, simply transmute them in the Horadric Cube while standing in the town of Harrogath on Hell Difficulty. This will open up a portal to Über Tristram where you get to fight Über Diablo, Über Mephisto and Über Baal. When you have killed all three of them you get a Hellfire torch charm. The best build for beating Über Tristram and all its prerequisites is a Smiter / Zealot hybrid:
Basics: Use Smite & Fanaticism Aura vs the Über Bosses, and Zeal & Fanaticism Aura vs their minions. Use salvation Aura if you need resistances, Redemption Aura if you need to recover Health and Mana, and Vigor Aura if you need to recover stamina.
Stats: Dexterity for 75% Chance to Block with Holy Shield activated.
Skills: 1 Smite; 1 Charge; 1 Holy Bolt; 1 Blessed Hammer; 20 Holy Shield; 20 Sacrifice; 20 Zeal; 1 Might; 1 Blessed Aim; 1 Concentration; 20 Fanaticism; 10+ Defiance
Weapon: Last Wish Berserker Axe, Grief Phase Blade or Death eth Berserker Axe
Shield: Exile runeword 1000+ Defense 45 res, Sanctuary Paladin shield, Phoenix Paladin shield or Herald of Zakarum Upgraded
Swap: Call To Arms Flail and Spirit runeword
Helm: Crown of Ages or Guillaume’s Face
Body Armor: Enigma, Chains of Honor or Fortitude runeword
Gloves: Dracul’s Grasp
Belt: Verdungo’s Hearty Cord or Thundergod’s Vigor
Boots: Gore Rider or Goblin toe
Amulet: Mara’s Kaleidoscope or Highlord’s Wrath
Ring1: Raven Frost
Ring2: Bul-kathos’ Wedding Band or Stone of Jordan
Charms: Annihilus, Hellfire torch, 9 x Offensive Auras Skillers and small charms with life and resistance.
In the video below you have a full tutorial for how to do Über Tristram: