I didn’t want to post this in the non-Spoiler thread, in case anyone didn’t know who the end boss is. If you haven’t got to that point yet: spoiler alert!
Ok, so I’m playing as a Witch Doctor. I’m level 32, and Diablo has been kicking my ass. I haven’t been able to defeat the Shadow of Diablo phase of that battle. I don’t know if I don’t have the right skills equipped, or if Diablo isn’t actually beatable at level 32 in solo play. As I mentioned in the LFG Diablo thread, I only played 1 & 2 as solo games, and never got into the hardcore, replay-the-game-100x-to-get-the-best-gear play pattern.
Should I be going back and re-playing earlier acts to level up? Should I be inviting a friend into my game to help me kill the bastard? What is the “right” way to play this game?
Diablo is definitely beatable at level 32. Actually, level doesn’t make a huge difference in this game. You might be suffering from having very weak gear, especially a main weapon. I think by the time I finished normal I had around 400 DPS, and that’s fairly low from what I’ve read.
The thing I found in the Diablo fight was just knowing his pattern and staying out of it. Particularly, you need to move not to get caught in his cages. But if you are moving enough, it’s fairly easy to avoid most of his damage.
I beat him at 31 or 30 with a WD, without too much of a problem. Some pertinent stats:
My paper doll DPS was around 400.
I was using acid cloud (with acid rain I think)
Haunt with the rune that returns health
spirit walk with the mana return rune
gargantuan with the rune that makes him bulk up with elites and packs
flashfire with the first rune
and grasping dead with the rune to decrease the cooldown
I use the templar, with skill choices to heal, regenerate life, generate resources, and I think charge.
The idea was generally you’d have your zombie up and the templar and they would somewhat keep diablo in place. Then you snare, haunt, and acid cloud him and lob flashfire as long as you can before needing to move. Getting out of the way of damage is always priority over attacking.
When you get into the shadow realm and are fighting yourself, do the same thing to your shadow double.
Use spirit walk to get out of bad situations AND to regenerate mana.
My suspicion is you’re geared such that your DPS is low. I found that when I was sporting 200-250 DPS using the same skills, my mana just ran out. But when the DPS went up stuff would die quickly enough that the mana held up.
Also for your shadow double note that acid cloud is spammable. You lose out on a substantial amount of damage per mana since the acid puddles don’t stack, but you can dump your mana all at once to take your double down quickly and then spirit walk when you pop back out to regen mana (and let your tanks establish a bit of a grip on Diablo).
Unless you’re really badly geared, Diablo shouldn’t be a problem if you have a decent spec. Just make sure you have enough single target skills (eg haunt, especially with the higher DPS rune, spirit barrage, darts) and damage boosting passives (is pierce the veil open at 32?)
My skill tree isn’t much different from yours, only that I wasn’t using acid cloud. Also, I’m not allowed any followers in the Diablo fight… I was using the Templar exclusively throughout the game, though.
It appears my problem is my DPS. It’s currently showing as 183.89: half yours! I’m currently carrying a rare ceremonial knife (lvl 24 with 34DPS) and a level 9 rare mojo. How do I get better gear? AH?
Yeah, the easiest way to just get it is AH. If you’re the compulsive packrat type, though, look through what you have: You can use a lot of 2Hers. I think for a while I was using a bow with about 45 DPS. If you have some decent DPS weapons with a slot and the gems to make the flawless ruby, drop one of those in there too.
I tried not to AH with my non-HC character since the game was easy enough as it is, but at some point I realized that having armor + vitality + regen + whatever else wasn’t as important as having the damage to make the monsters dead, and when I did that and upped my DPS things got a lot better.
Level 32. Beat him the first time and I don’t think a few of the skills are even good for boss fights. I just never bothered to change my build much in SP for Normal mode. I only bought a set of braces in the AH (for 3500 gold) to pump my Int a bit. I think my DPS was 320-ish by the time I got to the end.
That’s what I did. I figured I would be done as I do not really dig going over the same content. I did not in the two previous Diablos. However, I am still enjoying it. Have one in Hell and one In Nightmare. Some parts can get tedious, but it is still great fun watching stuff burst into 1,000 pieces.
The game really does change in the different difficulty levels I find. Yeah, the basic content’s the same, but much of the other stuff is randomized, and it does get more challenging. That’s particularly true in Hardcore mode, where I’m sweating already in Nightmare when I run into nasty packs of champs.
Back when all the cool kids were playing, Tom mentioned that the game is different on Nightmare, and it is. Bosses now have multiple abilities and some combinations are a lot worse than others (and this varies on a class per class basis to some extent). Also there’s a nice jump in difficulty between Act IV normal and Act I nightmare. You have to start caring about getting hit by things and the like.
It’s worth trying out at Nightmare to see if you’re still having fun. To me some of the verdict is still out… I think the game plays better at Nightmare, but I’m not sure about essentially redoing large swathes of the same content again when the only thing different is that it’s harder. I definitely would have preferred to start with Nightmare as the default difficulty and have the character power scaled appropriately.
After I beat Diablo with my 32 Sorceress, I started playing hardcore and am having trouble looking back. The nice thing is that your hardcore characters still share stash, albeit with only other hardcore characters, and your jeweler/blacksmith remain at the same level.
Anything you have on you when you die though is gone, a tough lesson to learn when you forget to stash your crapload of crafting materials.
I like HC, but when my 17 barb died and I realized I have to start over again and that 6 hours led to very little in the way of a leg up for the next new character, I realized that I need to have some SC characters too so that I can continue to see the game in higher levels, because I just don’t have the play time to not blink at 6 hours worth of lost progress. (I don’t mind, I just literally get about an hour to an hour and a half to play twice a week, plus whatever I can snag on the weekend. So that was a couple weeks play for my Barb that went boom.)
I think I may try my own in-between version for a bit. In SC when a char dies I’ll make a new char and start levelling them. When I have one of each in SC I’ll start rotating through as they die. Should work until all of them are on hell or inferno or somesuch and I spend more time switching characters than playing. :P
We’re past the discussion about “how do I kill Diablo” but I wanted to chime in to say the skills your clone gets can make the fight much more difficult or much easier. As I understand it, your shadow clone gets 4 skills chosen somehow (I doubt it’s random, but it’s random-ish, let’s say). My Witch Doctor clone had Zombie Bears, which I’d never seen before (given I was level 30) and the first time he shot them at me, I died. And the second time. I was so frustrated, since I had no idea what he was doing. I did learn to GTFO when he started shooting them, and I was able to beat Diablo.
I think the frustration in beating Diablo on my WD led me to rolling a Monk, since I love the strategy of “stand in front of them and hit them in the face” - which is mostly what my Monk does.