Diablo 2: Lord of Destruction Trapassin Guide By Morrigan (c) 2001 (email@example.com) Version 1.1 (last edited 9/13/2001) Typed in Microsoft Word (Courier New Font Size 10) Version Updates: 1.1 - Minor corrections, added my last character section. 1.0 - FAQ was created. The "trapassin," or traps assassin is one of the not-so-popular types of builds due to the myth of traps being ineffective at higher difficulties. But I'm positive that this type of assassin is definitely the more safer type. And the damage isn't bad at all; it just doesn't do the incredible amount of damage as a powerful firewall. As a master of traps you generally act as a "supervisor" while your traps, shadow, and mercenary are your "employees" doing the work for you. If you want to be different from the majority of assassins that specialize in martial arts (tiger strike/dragon tail or phoenix strike specialists in particular), try out the trapassin. -------- CONTENTS -------- -Trap Skills -Trap Skills -Shadow Disciplines -Martial Arts -Attribute Points -Items -Strategies -PvM and PvP skills -Trap usage -Skill combinations -Mercenaries -Special boss battles -Miscellaneous -My last character -Legal Stuff ----------- TRAP SKILLS ----------- Fire Blast - Level 1 Skill Throws a grenade that explodes and deals fire damage in a small radius. You simply throw this bomb to your destination, and it explodes after landing. Advantages: +Can be thrown anywhere on the screen +No casting delay Disadvantages: -Outside Act 1 Normal you will not get enough bang for your buck -At very high levels it's damage is comparable to a very low level wake skill My suggestion: Put 1 point in it, as it is a prerequisite for the other traps. Shock Web - Level 6 Skill Very similar to Fire Blast. But her you throw a set of spikes instead of 1 grenade. The spikes create a web of lightning between each other. More points will increase the number of spikes and damage. Advantages: +Alternate to Fire Blast +No casting delay Disadvantages: -Like fire blast, the damage is horrid outside Act 1 normal My suggestion: Again, only 1 point here, as the damage doesn't cut it. Blade Sentinel - Level 6 Skill Throws a spinning blade that patrols between the area you used the skill and the target area. It will do damage to anything it touches along its path. The sentinel will last for 4 seconds before self- destruction. Advantages: +Can slice through many monsters with the proper angle +Monsters nearby can take lots of hits from this skill if you make the destination point just behind you Disadvantages: -2 second casting delay. And it only lasts 4 seconds. -Damage is not so keen at the later stages of the game (in NORMAL) My suggestion: This skill appears to have potential, but I don't think this skill is worth it. But it does have uses outside act 1. Throw in a point if you wish to get Blade Fury/Shield. Charged Bolt Sentry - Level 12 Skill Sets up a sentry that emits charged bolts in the direction of the nearest target. It shoots 5 times, each time releasing 5 charged bolts. Additional levels do not increase the number of bolts per shot. Advantages: +Covers a good distance +Fire-and-forget skill Disadvantages: -Damage pales in comparison to Lightning Sentry -Seems to spit out the bolts at a slow rate Useful even with 1 point in earlier acts, but gets replaced by Lightning Sentry. Wake of Fire - Level 12 Skill Sets up a wake that shoots fire in the shape of a V. Fires in succession fairly quickly. After 5 shots it disappears. Advantages: +It covers a decent area although the range is a little limited +Does its damage rather quickly for a fire skill Disadvantages: -The last fire trap is much better for damage -Don't last very long; sometimes require recasting which eats up mana especially in the early to mid stages My suggestion: Put 1 point in it as it is a prerequisite for Wake of Inferno. Blade Fury - Level 18 Skill A skill that allows you to throw stars at enemies. It requires some practice to get in all your hits. Upon casting the skill you throw 3 blades, and as long as you hold the mouse button down more blades will be thrown. There is a small costs of 3 mana to activate the skill, which is negligible. Note that the rate you throw the blades relies on ATTACK SPEED, not CASTING SPEED. Advantages: +Looks really cool :) And it gives you something to do besides watching your pretty traps go to work. +If you are a pure trapassin this becomes your prime source of physical damage +Does good damage at high levels Disadvantages: -You must stand still while using this skill -Each blade has a mana cost. At level 20 it's 8 mana a blade. Continuous blade fury will tax your mana heavily. -The blades don't move very fast, you could miss with them My suggestion: Pure trapassins may opt to invest in this skill. If you do decide to go for blade fury, max it. Assassins that only specialize in traps can leave it at level 1. Lightning Sentry (LS for short) - Level 24 Skill It lays down a sentry that fires lightning bolts. The sentry will emit its lightning 10 times before self-destruction. Advantages: +More points into it result the greater the distance of the bolts +Proper placement can let them cross paths can inflict great pain to mobs of monsters +Unlike Wake of Inferno, it deals all of its damage very quickly +Like most lightning skills, the lightning travels fast Disadvantages: -It's 20 mana for one trap. Expensive when you start feeling the need to put down 5 of these sentries. -Does less damage than Wake of Inferno at equal levels My suggestion: Pure trapassins should max this skill. You can max wake of inferno first, but this is a perfectly good alternate. Trap specialized assassins may leave it at level 1 if they melee a lot and already have Wake of Inferno. Wake of Inferno (WoI for short) - Level 24 Skill The fire version of LS (Lightning Sentry). It fires a sorceress-like inferno 10 times before disintegrating. Advantages: +Does lots of damage +Good placement of wakes = good area coverage Disadvantages: -This trap can be avoided by faster enemies due to the nature of an inferno attack -No range increase as level increases -Costs 20 mana for one wake. My suggestion: Anyone who decides to have a trap should invest in WoI - heavily. Death Sentry (DS for short) - Level 30 Skill Like LS, Death Sentry will emit lightning bolts. However if there is a corpse in range of its sight it can detonate it as long as there is a monster in range of the blast radius. So DS is basically an assassin's version of Corpse Explosion. It only fires 5 times, and any combination of the lightning and the corpse explosions that add up to 5 will do. Advantages: +Corpse explosion is what makes this skill a real killer. Not quite as powerful as the necromancer's version, but still a powerhouse. +At high levels the lightning does decent damage per bolt and the corpse explosion radius is just nuts +This trap can detonate corpses from a screen and a half away! Disadvantages: -Not a good source of lightning damage. It only fires 5 times as opposed to LS's 10. -20 mana for this sentry My suggestion: Don't be so quick to max this skill. I recommend anywhere around 1-12 points here for good coverage of corpse explosion. You can max it if you want if you are not a pure trapassin. Leaving it at level 1 requires you to rely on +skill items to boost the radius. Blade Shield - Level 30 Skill Interesting skill here. You get some sort of extended thorn effect (not like a paladin's thorn aura, like an "attacker takes x amount of damage" effect). The monsters don't have to be attacking you, but they do have to be real close for the blades to slice them up. Advantages: +There are reports of the blade shield working with certain attributes like "crushing blow" and "causes monsters to flee" and the like. Just imagine what you can do with it! +Free damage to anything that comes too close to you +Looks really cool :) -Very steep mana cost for the short duration of the skill -More skill levels will result in a somewhat bigger duration, but an ever bigger mana cost My suggestion: Pure trapassins should get 1 point into it. The first advantage of this skill is godly enough for you to get it. IMO more points are just gravy. ------------------ SHADOW DISCIPLINES ------------------ *I'm only going to mention those I feel should be considered Burst of Speed (BoS for short) - Level 6 Skill Grants you a temporary boost in speed. Advantages: +The boost in running and casting speed are very handy Disadvantages: -Diminishing returns from each skill point into it My suggestion: Anywhere from 3-10. Personally I only have 3 in it, but 10 gives you quite a boost in speed. Weapon Block - Level 6 Skill Dual claw wielding assassins can block attacks. Advantages: +Blocking without a shield +The percentages you see is what you get, unlike shield blocking where character level and dexterity come into play Disadvantages: -Shields can have better blocking percentages and resistances -A successful block has a chance of damaging your claws, and as of right now good claws are a fortune to repair My suggestion: You're gonna get 1 point into this skill if you want either of your shadows (which you should get). Pure trapassins who are aiming for lots of +skill items may invest a few points as they will wield dual claws for +skill bonuses. Cloak of Shadows - Level 12 Skill Upon casting all monsters in the area of effect are blinded and have a decrease in defense. The area also becomes very dark. Advantages: +20 yard radius. Wow. +The blinding feature is so key. It allows you to place your traps without fear of being attacked (as long as you don't run into them :P ) +Only 1 point is needed! Disadvantages: -More points into this skill have no effect on the duration or radius of the skill -Defense reduction is pointless since you generally do not melee anyway -The darkness gets extremely annoying My suggestion: 1 point and your done with it. Practice with this skill. Fade - Level 18 Skill Temporary resistance to all elemental attacks. Advantages: +Not necessary in normal, but gains its uses in Nightmare and Hell Disadvantages: -You cannot have BoS on at the same time :( -Diminishing returns for every skill point My suggestion: Again, around 3-10 points. Shadow Warrior - Level 18 Skill Creates a minion that looks just like you. The minion will use the two skills you have readied for yourself (as well as the standard attack). Advantages: +She serves as your tank early on +You control what skills she uses, which means she'll be much more prone to using traps as long as you are using them as well Disadvantages: -Later on if you do not invest in her she'll be killed easily -She gains no resistances with additional skill points -Her life is still small at high levels even at level 20 -Mana cost rises as skill rises -Her skills levels don't seem to be up to par as yours My suggestion: Throughout normal difficulty and early nightmare you can get away with level 1 shadow warrior. But she tends to die quickly even then. Shadow Masters have much more life, deal more damage, and cost LESS mana at higher levels. Mindblast - Level 24 Skill Stuns all monsters in a small radius, as well as small amounts of physical damage. Also has a chance to convert monsters to fight on your side for a short while. Advantages: +Even at level 1 it's very useful. The stun allows your traps to hit them. +Converted monsters also hold enemies in place for your traps to do their thing. +No casting delay Disadvantages: -Pitiful damage -15 mana for one blast, although there is no increase of mana cost at higher levels My suggestion: Dueling trapassins may want to max this skill. Otherwise, it can do the job at level 1 just fine. Venom - Level 30 Skill Coats your weapon with poison. I'm only mentioning it because some trapassins use bows instead of claws. Advantages: +Because of the way poison stacks a high level in this skill along with a few poison charms can earn you poison damage in the thousands +Allows you to do hit-and-run tactics Disadvantages: -If you aren't using a bow, it's useless -BoS and Fade cannot be used with venom My suggestion: If you want to use a nice fast bow with 5 or 6 perfect emeralds max this skill. If not, ignore it. Shadow Master - Level 30 Skill Another version of your shadow. This one has access to all of the assassin skills. Advantages: +At high levels it serves as a tank quite well. +Has access to most assassin skill regardless of where your skill points are. It will NOT use lower level skill traps such as charged bolt and wake of fire, but will not use Death Sentry either. +Gains resistances for each skill point added beyond the first one Disadvantages: -Sometimes confused over what skills to use (especially choosing between BoS, fade, and venom) -No control over what skill she uses My suggestion: Invest in this skill. Doesn't have to be maxed, but a low level shadow master doesn't last very long. The more multiplayer games you play the less you need to invest in the skill (her life scales directly with the number of players in the game). ------------ MARTIAL ARTS ------------ *I'm only going to mention those I feel should be considered Tiger Strike - Level 1 Skill Each attack gives you a charge that enhances the damage dealt by an attack or finishing move. You can have up to 3 or these charges at a time. Advantages: +Coupled with cobra strike it's a quick fix to mana problems Disadvantages: -Trapassins avoid melee, especially later on My suggestion: Only get 1 point in it if you are hurting for mana constantly. You may ignore the martial arts tree completely if you wish. Cobra Strike - Level 12 Skill Each attack gives you a charge that grants life leeching (and mana leeching with 2+ charges). Like Tiger Strike you can get up to 3 of these charges. Advantages: +Mana leeching is what is important here. Best used to regain mana. Disadvantages: -Again, trapassins avoid melee My suggestion: If you need leeching, 1 point period. Any more and you're wasting points that could be used for your traps. ---------------- ATTRIBUTE POINTS ---------------- Strength - Allows you to equip heavier items as well as deal more physical damage on weapons and kicks. Assassins should not be beefing up strength to wear the best elite armor. Remember certain milestones for strength, like 100 (for Silks of the Victor if you really want as many +skill items) and 118 (for scissors suwayyah). Dexterity - Allows you to equip certain types of weapons, do more damage on kicks, and increases your chances to hit with melee weapons. Currently in 1.08 dexterity also affects your block rate. To keep your block rate at an acceptable level, you must give 2-3 points in dexterity every level. However if you do not find yourself in situations where you need to block, you can either leave it at 118 or lower. Vitality - The more vitality you have, the more life you have. You don't need to invest much early on, but one you fulfill all the strength and dexterity requirements, concentrate on vitality. Energy - More energy means more mana. Most of your mana will come from items, but you can dump a few points into it if you wish. Anywhere from base energy to 100 (which IMO is overkill) is acceptable. ----- ITEMS ----- Generally, you'll want items that give +mana, +life, +skills, resistances and +mana regeneration. Life/Mana leeching is only needed for the early stages of the game. Later you'll want regeneration items to cover for life/mana recovery. Key things to remember: 1) Circlets/Amulets/Claws can give +3 to trap skills if it's MAGICAL, not RARE. However, rare items can give +2 to assassin skills and then +2 to trap skills. Exceptional/Elite claws can also give +1-3 skill points to 1 to 3 skills. So it's possible to attain +7 to a single skill from a single claw! 2) Use socketed gear and perfect gems to boost your mana. More mana = more mana regenerated per second. This means you should look for sapphires. Alternatively you could also go for skulls for the +life/mana regeneration. 3) Your attack power is purely skill based. More skills = more damage. Look for them in circlets, claws, amulets, and if possible armor and rings. 4) Caster and Safety crafted items are good while you can't find the right equipment you need. It's a shame you need perfect gems for the normal crafted equipment though. 5) I don't recommend dual-claw until the late game because you'll need the shield for blocking and more importantly resistances. Go with dual-claw once you find 2 claws that give plenty of +skills. ---------- STRATEGIES ---------- Player vs. Monster main skills: -Lightning Sentry -Wake of Inferno -Death Sentry -Fade (in Hell anyway) Player vs. Player main skills: -Lightning Sentry -Mindblast -Dragon Flight -Burst of Speed -Wake of Inferno (if they need it for leveling purposes) Using your traps: 1) Circle - Set up your traps to enclose the enemies. WoI works better than LS if the circle isn't too big. The fire will cross and burn quite a few enemies. For bigger circles the lightning will cross since they will travel quite a distance. 2) Half Circle - Set up traps to make a semi-circle around you. Basically covers the side you want to attack. 3) Laser - Place all the traps on top of each other. With a little practicing on timing the trap placement, you can have a constant stream of fire or lightning attacking. A constant stream can stun-lock some enemies. Doesn't cover a good area obviously, but looks cool. And a LS laser can put diablo's "red lightning hose" to shame :P To be honest this is just for kicks. 4) Random Area Coverage - Traps are set anywhere that will cover the best area. This is needed against enemies that move fast enemies like imps, leapers, etc. 5) Scouting - Very important in some areas. Place one or two lightning sentries ahead of you. You'll know if monsters lurk there if it attacks. Skill Combinations: 1) Combination of LS and WoI that add up to 4 + 1 DS - Use your staple traps to deal damage and slay a few, then place the DS and watch the bodies fly. IMO it's the most efficient way to deal with mobs, and the destruction of corpses relives any stress with reviving certain monsters. 2) Traps + Mindblast - Mindblast stuns monsters, keeping them in place for your traps to work. Mindblast also pushes monsters, which is vital when the enemies is coming towards you. The knockback will work versus any type of monster, including uniques. The conversion of monsters will also help mobs stay in one place. 3) Traps + Cloak of Shadows - Although constantly dark, it lets you get up to the monsters before you lay the traps down. Mercenaries: Rogue - Unfortunately she isn't a tank, but if you find a nice bow you can lend it to her. She'd be best for dealing poison damage from a multiple emerald socketed bow, or for slowing down monsters with a cold damaging bow. Paladin - I consider the mercs from Act 2 paladins since they use paladin auras. It's your choice of what type you need. The healing aura can help for life regeneration, but the defense aura can help you avoid hits should you find yourself being attacked. Mage - It's best to get a cold mage. It's the main elemental damage you cannot inflict with your traps, and it holds enemies in place for your traps. However shattering monsters may not be so good for DS... Barbarian - This is what I use. He's a big meat shield that does physical damage. Give him a good sword and some decent resistance gear and he's all set. -------------------- SPECIAL BOSS BATTLES -------------------- The Smith - He isn't very fast (unless he gets that Extra Fast attribute), but he's strong. Use the layout of the barracks to hide around corners and walls and let traps hit him as he finds a way to get to you. Andariel - She always has a -50 resistance to fire. So unless your lightning traps do a ton of damage more than your fire traps, whip out your Wake of Fire/Inferno. Place them around the pool of blood and run around it. As she tries to get to you the wakes will get their hits in. The Summoner - Once you see his platform put down your traps. Standing around too long is just asking him to firewall you. And his firewall hurts a ton. Duriel - Either type of element is fine (his has no weakness, but is immune to cold later on). If you have good meat shields go with WoI. If you are running around the area, use LS. His charge hurts as many players know. At hell my latest assassin survived a charge which took around 750-800 life. Mephisto - After getting his attention run back to the other side of the river of blood. Stand in a place where he is just on the corner of the screen. Then place your traps. Almost all the time he's too stupid to find a way to get to you. Lightning and Cold resistance helps a lot. Hephasto the Armorer - Unless you've got a good meat shield, you will be running constantly. This means for the most part LS traps. Either shadow will only slow him down for a few seconds, giving you time to regain stamina and lay down the traps. If he as a cold aura or teleportation, I would suggest you avoid him and complete his quest at another time. Like Mephisto he's pretty dumb concerning pathing AI, so you can simply find a barrier of lava to separate you and him, and then blast him with your traps as he runs around aimlessly. Diablo - Lay down traps while constantly running around him. This should avoid his "red lightning hose" that kills most players. I usually put down LS because he tends to move around a lot. Fire and lightning resistance is best here, as well as magic reducing gear. Nithlathak - Lead his minions away from him and then kill them. If that's not possible use DS to detonate the corpses before he does. His corpse explosion is really powerful. An alternate method is to rush right at him and kill him ASAP. Without corpses all he's got is an arctic blast attack which isn't powerful at all. The Ancients - Keep your merc in good health with potions so he can tank against the big 3. Depending on what bonuses they get use WoI of LS. If they get bonuses you can't handle, use a scroll of town portal to reset them. Listor the Tormentor - He gets special mention because of the "nice" way he enters the game. Basically right before he makes his entrance there is always a long period of loading lag. Always. If you are near his spawning area, you will die once the loading lag finishes (as well as seeing him and his buddies huddling around your body). Best way to avoid this is to run once you kill of the other 4 groups of minions Baal throws at you. Then "crawl" towards Baal, starting from very far away if the loading lag doesn't begin. If done correctly, you'll recover from the lag unscratched. It's also possible to enter the worldstone chamber without defeating his last batch of minions. Just lead the minions away, then run straight for Baal. Baal - He doesn't walk around a whole lot, but teleports from time to time. Still, I'd go with WoI if it's at a good level. Just run around to avoid those naughty tentacles and his cold blast. Use the pillars around the area to hide from his fire nova. If you see two of him, the real one has the label "Demon" slightly off to the right. You can also deal with his "vile effigy" by teleporting to town. Once the real one is dead the other disappears. Fire and cold resistances are good against him. ------------- MISCELLANEOUS ------------- What to be wary of: 1) Sorceress PK- firewall is right now the "hot" skill. It's pretty safe to assume that all of those level 99 sorceresses have firewall and thunder storm as their main skills. Those spells do insane damage. But why should this bother you? It's when they want to PK. And doing so only requires them to lay down a few firewalls around you (while it seems as if they are attacking monsters), town portal to town, and then hostile you while you are still in the firewalls. IMO a very lame way to PK, but it's being done. 2) Druid PK - oh boy. Because of a very nasty bug in the game, druids can force your game to freeze up (I'm not sure how it works...has something to do with using a druid skill granted by an item). So they freeze your game while you are in battle, then either let the monsters kill you or they quickly go to town, hostile you, and PK you. The lameness of this PK trick is way worse than the sorceress firewall/TP/hostile technique. Worse yet there are no real warning sings of this. Rumors have it barbarians have a similar bug as well. 3) Lag - an old, but still ongoing problem that will most likely never resolve itself. Lag is the only thing that cannot gain any resistance of by the game's natural means. You can indirectly gain lag resistance with your skills (properly placed traps, blade shield, etc). Type in the message "fps" to toggle the display of your ping, frames per second, as well as other stuff. Note that all monsters and minions are immune to lag ;) So how can you detect lag attacks? -Monsters will go to their targets, but will not attack -Your traps will not spawn when you cast them -Drinking potions does nothing -You cannot pick up items from the ground/inventory -Minions/Players just stand around -After running around the area you notice things are disappearing -You come across the infamous black wall (not receiving data from the game) -You suddenly teleport to another area instantly (packet loss perhaps) -Game seems to freeze for a few seconds (loading from your computer) -Game becomes really choppy and your hard disk is going nuts (more loading from your system) The last two can be rectified by purchasing more RAM, although it's not necessarily a guarantee ;) There's the requirements to play, recommended specs to play, and the hidden REALITY specs to play. I find this to be the case with all games :D ----------- LEGAL STUFF ----------- Diablo II and Diablo II: Lord of Destruction are the property and creation of Blizzard Entertainment. You may distribute this FAQ freely as long as you give credit where credit is due. This FAQ is copyrighted 2001 by Morrigan. ----------------- MY LAST CHARACTER ----------------- My last character was a hardcore trap assassin by the name of Ayako- Katagiri (I'm a Tokimeki Memorial fan :) ). She was felled by the Ancients in hell during a sudden loss of connection from b.net which was followed by a "Realm Down" message. You've probably experienced this before. Anyway, here was her statistics: Level 76 Pure Trap Assassin Headgear - "Lore" Helmet (+1 to all skills, 30% lightning resistance) Armor - 4 Socketed Anicent Armor (3 perfect skulls, ort rune) Claw - Witch-hunter's claw (+2 to all assassin skills) Secondary Weapon - Sureshrill Frost (Mace w/ Frozen Orb charges) SHIELD - "Rhyme" Bone Shield (+25 all resistances, +15 mana regen) Secondary Shield - Sigon's Guard (+1 all skills, extra blocking) GLOVES - Frostburn (40% mana increase) Belt - Magical Plated Belt (forgot name, but gave +96 life) Boots - Infernostride (Boosted current and max fire resistance) Amulet - Nokozan Relic (Similar to Infernostride) Ring 1 - Ring with 3 resists and -2 magic damage Ring 2 - Ring with 2 resists and -2 magic damage Charms to add life, mana, resistances (Items in all caps were personalized) Statistics (after item mods): 118 str, 113 dex, 225+ vit, base energy. Resistances (for hell): 73 fire, 23 cold, 47 lightning, -19 poison. After Fade: 95 fire, 68 cold, 75 lightning, 26 poison. Skills worth mentioning (after +3 to assassin skills): LS/WoI/Blade Fury - Max Shadow Master - 11 (was gonna max) Burst of Speed/Fade - 6 DS/Cloak of Shadows/Mindblast/Weapon Block - 4 Weapon Damage and Armor Rating - Irrelevant Blocking Percentage - 41% I think ---------- CONCLUSION ---------- So there you have it. Will I make more updates? Well, after my last loss of my hardcore character I've decided to stop playing D2X. So it isn't very likely. This is not the end-all perfect trap assassin FAQ as I'm sure there are better ones out there. I'm just providing information for those who are brave enough to go with the trap specialist. Enjoy!