Welcome to Freshman Diablo. As a long time lurker on Blizzard's Strategy Forum*, I saw the same questions being asked over and over again by new players. This page is intended to allow regulars to post a link so that such questions can be answered simply and quickly. I hope it helps. If you have any comments or suggestions, please mail me. Lochnar[ITB]
Battle.Net 101 by Argus McFrugal
This is a guide for those of you who are just venturing out onto Battle.net for the first time. Click the title to read the text online or here for a zipped version to download.
Avoiding PKs 101 by Hal
PKing is the killing of players by other players. Many players (including me) choose to avoid being PKed whenever possible because, at the very least, it is a nuisance. Since there is no way to turn off the ability of one player to kill another, it is a good idea to learn a few tips for avoiding those players who are out to ruin your game. This article contains some of those tips. Also read Battle.Net 101, above, for more. Click the title to read online or here for a zipped version to download.
Sorcerer 101 by Armin
This is a lesson for all of you who are just starting your adventure as a Sorcerer. It provides strategies for getting your character past those awkward early levels without dying too many times. Click the title to read online or here for a zipped version to download.
Warrior 101 by Armin
This is a lesson for all of you who are just starting your adventure as a Warrior. It provides strategies for getting your character past those awkward early levels without dying too many times. Click the title to read online or here for a zipped version to download.
Rogue 101 by Ice
This is a very good guide to the many ways that a rouge can be played. This actually goes beyond a freshman level guide, but only because there is no one best way to play this creature. Ice's site can be found at Caverns of Ice.
Level Up Point Distribution 101 by Armin
This is a general guide to level up point distribution. It details what benefit each statistic provides your character. It then explains how this affects your strategy for distributing your level up points to get the most immediate gain. Click the title to read online or here for a zipped version to download.
Spellcraft 101 by Armin
This is a lesson for all of you who want to use magic to its fullest. While it mainly addresses the Sorcerers, it also offers tips on how Rogues and Warriors should and shouldn't use each spell. Click the title to read online or here for a zipped version to download.
Lightning Based Magic 101 by Moriah
This is parts I and II of a (soon to be) compilation of four articles on the lightning based spells: Charged Bolt, Lightning, Chain Lightning and Nova. This article will go into more detail about when and how to use each of these spells. Read Spellcraft 101, above, to get an overall view on the use of all spells. Click the title to read online or here for a zipped version to download.
Shrines 101 by Moriah
This guide covers the various shrines you will find in Diablo. It groups together those with similar outcomes and then gives the message that they generate as well as their effect on the character. It also gives some information on the best way to use (or not use) each one. Click the title to read online or here for a zipped version to download.
Butcher Bashing 101 by Pete
Has the big bad Butcher been putting you up to age with the rest of his meat? This lesson will help you turn the tables on him. Click the title to read online or click here for a zipped version to download.
King Leoric 101 by Pete
Have the King and his minions been adding you to their ranks of the undead? This lesson will help you turn them back into nice quiet little piles of bones. Click the title to read online or here for a zipped version to download.
Black Death Bashing 101 by Hellbringer
Black Deaths have a nasty little surprise in store for new players. If you allow a Black Death to hit your character, that character can permanently lose a hit point each time. This guide will give you some suggestions on how to prevent them from making contact. Click the title to read online or here for a zipped version to download.
Melee Tactics 101 by Charles Warren
If your character is of the magically challenged variety, either by choice or by stats, this item will help you develop your ability to defeat your enemies in hand to hand combat. Click the title to read online or here for a zipped version to download.
The Lurker Lounge by Bolty
To quote from his site: "This site provides a home for homeless Diablo and Diablo II strategy." This site will provide strategy information for all level of players and will highlight great new information as it is discovered. He also maintains an excellent listing of links to all things Diablo.
Strategy Forum Etiquette by Mirajj
Blizzard's Strategy Forum* is a very valuable resource for both beginning and veteran Diablo players. You will find it a very civil place for getting questions answered. However, to maintain that civility, there is a low tolerance for some behaviors that are common in other forums found throughout the Internet. A visit to this sight will give new visitors a leg up on understanding how to get responses from regulars and not be ignored or flamed. (Note: This page refers specifically to the original DSF. However, much of the etiquette explained within applies just as well to the current Battle.net forums as well as other forums on the internet.)
Jarulf's Guide to Diablo and Hellfire by Jarulf
This web site is the place to download the most comprehensive guide to Diablo and Hellfire you will ever find. It will benefit the advanced player the most, but also provides a great deal of info valuable to the new player such as different types of items, quests and various monster info. A must have. A very nice online edition can be found at JG Online.
Tiltowait Does 3@30 by Lochnar
Although it is old hat for many veteran players, one of the first goals for many new players, after killing Diablo for the first time, is to be able to kill Diablo in multiplayer on hell difficulty while the character is still level 30. This is referred to as a 3@30. This is a small story I wrote about the first time I took a character for a 3@30.
Naked Maging 101 by Lochnar
This is not a strategy guide, but rather a set of "rules"; for playing a naked mage. There are no official rules that I have ever seen and they really aren't needed because there aren't any fine points to the restrictions as there are to something like a BNM (Beyond Naked Mage). This is a fun way to play on open BNet if you want a new thing to try.
Kill Counting 101 by Lochnar
As everyone knows, Diablo keeps a tally of kill counts for each type of monster you run into when playing. You may have also noticed that, if you play more than one game in a session, Diablo credits you with kills from earlier games in the current game. This can be handy because Diablo provides more detailed information about the monster attributes as the count goes up. You may not have noticed that single player saved games hold onto their kill counts. This can be used to your advantage by creating a single player character I like to refer to as my Bean Counter. This file explains how to use such a tally character. It also explains how to play single player games of Classic Diablo as if they had a difficulty setting of Nightmare or Hell.
The Highlander Tournament by Lochnar
This is a text file containing rules for a tournament style I had come up with. They are mostly complete but you will see by included comments that they are still somewhat in flux. Such a tournament had been attempted with some degree of success. We did not have a good reporting forum set up and it would have gone better with more players. However, I can attest to the rush you get while leveling your Highlander and having another jump in the game and challenge you. Because leveling can make such a difference in the abilities of the players, those that commit to the tournament must be willing to spend some time early on so that other players don't quickly eclipse them leaving them an easy mark. Feel free to try this out or modify it to suit your needs. Enjoy.
Armin 101 by Armin
The following items are actually more advanced than what would be considered "Freshman" material. However, they were written by Armin, who has contributed so much to this page and others, and deserved a home so they would not fade away.
The Bare Necessities - This is a guide to the "real world" (if that term can be applied to a computer game) equipment needs for the various classes. It is interesting to talk about ideal setups, but most people are not lucky enough to find the items that make up those ideals. You may already be doing much better than you thought. Give this a read and check your characters gear with these ideas in mind.
BNM Tips and Tricks - A BNM is a Beyond Naked Mage. They are allowed to use only cursed equipment. Surprisingly for some, it is possible to be very successful playing even with such a handicap. This guide gives some good tips for playing a BNM from the person who is unquestionably the premier player of the Beyond Naked way.
A Stance on Scanners - This is some editorial comment written by Armin regarding the frequent request for programs called scanners. If you are not aware of what they are, they are programs that purport to identify cheaters and hackers playing on Bnet. The main problem is that they fail miserably and only contribute to the paranoia already present there.
* You will find that Blizzard's original Diablo Strategy Forum (DSF) no longer exists. Battle.net still hosts forums for their other games, including Diablo 2. However, you can find some of the spirit of the original forum at The DSF Community.
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