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    1.10 Concentrator Guide by kristal

    Version: Final | Updated: 04/02/04 | Search Guide | Bookmark Guide

    The Concentrator
    By Kristal
    Table of Contents
    I.	Introduction
    II.	Attributes
    III.	Skills
    IV.	Equipment
    V.	Gameplay
    VI.	Mercenaries
    VII.    Party Play
    VIII.	Hotkeys
    IX.	Disclaimer
    Hi everyone. Welcome to Kristal's Guide to the Concentrator. Well, what is a
    Concentrator? A Concentrator is a Barbarian who uses Concentrate as his main
    attack. Not excited yet? That's because the Concentrator will really shine in
    patch 1.10 of the Lord of Destruction with the addition of...synergies.
    Synergies are basically the ability to raise another skill passively by
    investing skill points into another skill.
    Well why's the Concentrator so good? Quite simply, the "Concentrator" is the
    character build that can deal the most melee damage in the game, survive
    amazing amounts of incoming damage, and boast an incredible attack rating all
    in one. He can deal amazing damage with a single Concentrate in the end game
    through the use of synergies, attributes, masteries, and concentrate. Defense
    is added to by maxed out Shout and Concentrate, along with a few points in Iron
    Skin and life is increased with Battle Orders and incredible leech. And Attack
    Rating is increased with masteries, Concentrate, and high dexterity. And you
    can do all this WITH A SHIELD, so 75% less hits on you. The high-level
    Concentrator is one of the closest character builds to invincibilty in Diablo
    II. And there is no need to be able to juggle with a great number of skills,
    making the Concentrator a good build for new players and experts alike. The
    Concentrator is a versatile character who can deal with all kinds of enemies,
    and also suited to the constraints of PvP and Hardcore. The Concentrator also
    makes a great party member with his three warcries that can benefit the whole
    party. To be a good Concentrator, you must first remember this:
    "Deal as much damage as you can, while receiving as little as possible"
    That is the philosophy of the Concentrator. Remember, however, that this guide
    is in no way a strict one, and that you should adapt what is given here to fit
    your needs and gameplay. If you have any questions, please contact me at
    kristalsoul@hotmail.com, and be sure to include "Diablo II" in your subject.
    Attributes serve the Concentrator to enable him to deal even more damage, make
    sure his hits land, keep high his shield blocking, and to increase his life.
    Your two major attributes will therefore be strength and dexterity, with
    vitality a short distance away. Ideally, you want, out of the 5 points you get
    every level, 1.5-2 points in Strength and Dexterity, and 1-1.5 points in
    Vitality. As a side note, you need to invest exactly 2 points in dexterity per
    level to maintain the same blocking percentage. The exact calculation is
    ShieldBlock*(Dexterity-15)/(CharacterLevel*2). I chose to invest 2 each in
    Dexterity and Strength and 1 in Vitality. Explanations:
    Strength is used to equip better equipment and to increase melee damage. You
    should at all times be able to put on whatever weapons or armors you may have,
    so watch your strength for that. Strength more importantly increases your
    damage by the percentage of your strength. For example, 250 strength would
    increase your melee damage by 250%, so that adds one more ability to your
    damage-dealing arsenal.
    Dexterity increases your attack rating, your defense rating to a very small
    extent, and your ability to block. All of these make Dexterity a very useful
    attribute for the Concentrator. It's always good to have a high attack rating
    and a few more defense points, which are amplified with the Concentrator's
    skills. It's also great being able to block 75% of incoming attacks, which is
    the maximum block rate, and which corresponds to an effective tripling of your
    life with the small cost of a quick blocking animation that can be greatly
    shortened by using increased block rate shields.
    Vitality is also important, but to a lesser extent. You will win 4 maximum life
    points for every point in Vitality. But when you think of it, the extra life
    leech you would get by putting points into strength is probably a better use
    for your stat points than increasing the maximum life you have at the beginning
    of a battle. You will also be counting on battle orders and your high defense
    to keep you out of danger.
    You do not need to invest any point in Energy. It's as simple as that. None of
    your moves take more than 11 mana, and your most used skills take much less
    than that. You should have more than enough mana if you have even as much as 3%
    mana leech. Save your stat points for the other attributes. Note that you get
    one mana every level anyways.
    You should start off the game pumping a fair amount of points into vitality so
    you have a safety net for the first stages of the game. Towards level 22,
    you're going to want to start putting a lot of points into strength as you'll
    need to deal more damage, and you should have no problem landing your hits.
    Dexterity should really be boosted in the end game, when blocking monsters
    becomes even more important and it gets harder to get your hits to actually do
    any damage.
    Your typical skill build should look something like this. This build takes into
    account all the skills you can gain through level ups and the various quests
    that give you extra skill points. At the heart of the v1.10 Concentrator skill
    point investment is the use of synergies. Shout increases the damage of
    Berserk, while Battle Orders increases the damage of Concentration. Berserk
    adds some magical damage to Concentration, and all the warcries add duration to
    each other. These provide huge boosts to skills, as you can see in their
    respective effects listed underneath.
    Combat Masteries:
    Sword Mastery		20		+123% Damage, +180% AR, 21% Critical Strike
    Increased Stamina	1		+30% Stamina
    Increased Speed		1		+13% Speed
    Iron Skin		1		+30% Defense
    Natural Resistance	3-13*		up to +60% Resistances
    Shout			20		+290% Defense
    Battle Orders		20		+92% Life, Mana, Stamina
    Battle Command		1		+1 to all skills
    Combat Skills:
    Leap Attack		1		+100% Damage, +50% AR
    Concentrate		20		Uninterruptible, +290% Defense, +250% AR, +370%               
                                  Damage, +8% Magic Damage
    Berserk			8		+205% AR, +455% Magic Damage
    Bash			1
    Stun			1
    Leap			1
    Howl			1
    Total: 110 skillpoints
    *depending on the resists you gain from items and charms
    I will now proceed to detailed skill descriptions:
    Sword Mastery- This is a no-brainer. More damage, more attack rating, more
    critical hit percentage. Max it out. The bonus may not be as important as the
    one for concentrate, but this bonus will apply not only to Concentrate, but
    also to Leap Attack and Berserk. This skill ensures you'll land your hits, and
    land them hard.
    Increased Stamina- That little boost in 30% stamina is a good deal for one
    skill point. It basically allows you to run 30% farther and rest 30% less. This
    can also be handy in situations where you need to run away from a battle and
    have little stamina to spare.
    Increased Speed- Speed is relatively useful to a Barbarian since it allows him
    to close the distance between himself and ranged attackers or magic users far
    more efficiently. Once again, you can see that a 13% increased speed is a good
    bargain for one skill point.
    Iron Skin- While not as useful at later levels, the 30% increased defense for
    the first skill point is a good boost to your defense, and should be enough of
    a boost to your already high defense to keep you safe most of the time.
    Natural Resistance- Probably the most valuable defensive skill the barbarian
    has within his arsenal, Natural Resistance will add your resistance to all the
    elements without the need for any charm or equipment. Even a few percentages in
    resistance can be extremely useful when facing an enemy like Diablo or those
    evil oblivion knights. If you think Iron Skin is better to pump, think of this:
    would you rather have 8% more resistance which you get between level 12 and 13
    of Natural Resistance or the 10% increase in defense you get with additional
    points in Iron Skin ? Your defenses and life should be so high by the time
    you've attained a high level that you'll probably find yourself more vulnerable
    to magic. Maximum resistances are essential. If you already have max resists
    without natural resistance, however, put in only the minimum three points,
    which are always useful. Additional points can be used wherever you choose, but
    remember that natural resistance will tkae off the burden off your items.
    Shout- This warcry starts out with a great boost of 100% defense, and then goes
    up by 10% for each additional level, which is the same rate as additional
    points in Iron Skin. So why is Shout better? Quite simply, because it is
    affected by and affects other skills through synergies, and it also helps all
    your party members as well. Its only slight inconveniency is that you must
    recast it approximately every 5 minutes with maxed out Shout and Battle Orders.
    Its synergies include a big 10% magical damage boost to berserk per skill level
    as well as augmenting the duration of Battle Orders and Battle Command. As a
    defensive warcry, your melee party members will love you for that heightened
    defense (without mentioning the the extra life, mana, and extra skill level).
    Battle Orders- This warcry will essentially increase your maximum life, mana,
    and stamina by almost twice the original amount. The additional life especially
    will allow you to take much more damage, making the Concentrator very hard to
    actually kill. Remember also that Battle Orders has a great synergy with
    Concentrate and gives a longer duration at every skill level to Shout and
    Battle Command. Fianlly, Battle Orders is a great skill for all party members
    since who wouldn't rejoice at more life and mana.
    Battle Command- You only need one point in Battle Command for a great effect.
    Why? Well because extra points only add to the duration, and you should already
    have a very long duration with maxed out duration synergies from shout and
    battle orders, giving this warcry a similar duration of around four minutes.
    This skill should be used before your other warcries because it'll boost them.
    The reason battle command helps so much is with synergies. For example, think
    of Concentrate. With one more point in all skills, Concentrate first gets the
    bonus to itself with one point. It then gets a bonus to the mastery you've
    chosen, so a few more damage and AR points there. You also get one more point
    into Battle Orders which increases your max life/stamina/mana. You get bonus to
    defense with Shout and Iron SKin. You get more speed, more endurance, more
    resistance. And of course, this also provides a bonus to all your party
    members, and they'll end up loving you for all those defensive warcries.
    Leap Attack- This is a very useful skill with only one point because it allows
    you to get from to any point of the screen without taking any damage, and for a
    relatively low mana cost. The possibilities of this skill are almost endless.
    You can cross rivers with it or attack an unraveller before tackling his
    minions. You can also deal with spellcasters and ranged attackers without
    taking any damage getting there. Leap Attack will also enable you to run away
    when you're in trouble and surrounded by monsters or allow you to deal with
    runaway PvP bowazons and sorceresses by allowing you to move without taking any
    damage. All in all, Leap Attack is a great skill to have, and should be used in
    difficult situations. Remember that if you hit Shift and use this skill, you
    can leap attack without any monster to attack.
    Concentrate- The heart of the Concentrator! Oh, I cannot praise this skill
    enough. One of the biggest damage increases in the game, great synergies,
    increased Defense Rating and Attack Rating make this THE skill to have for a
    Barbarian. You'll be using this skill against 95% of the monsters you
    encounter. Not much to say other than just use it all the time. Oh, one more
    thing. It's uninterruptible, so bye bye the barbarian who can't even get one
    blow in against fast-attacking enemies.
    Berserk- Your skill of choice against physical immunes. Don't use this too
    often since it'll bring down your defense to 0 for a short period of time,
    although you can still use your shield for blocking. Use it against physical
    immunes after having taken out all other monsters on the screen. Berserk does
    great magical damage with the synergy from Shout so you should be able to bring
    down most if not all physical immunes in one hit. You may also want to use this
    from time to time in Hell mode since very few monsters even have resistance to
    magical damage, while they all get 50% physical resistance in Hell difficulty.
    In the early game, you'll want to pump up your damage with Sword Mastery, which
    is available from the beginning. You may want to put a few early points in
    Shout as well. As soon as you hit level 18, start pumping points into
    Concentrate and mix that with Battle Orders when you hit level 24. Put in a few
    points into Berserk and Natural Resistance when you hit level 30. Since you
    usually won't have any physical immunes to deal with in Normal and Nightmare
    difficulties, you don't have to worry too much about the Shout/Berserk Duo yet.
    By level 60, you should be well on your way to having maxed out Sword Mastery,
    Concentrate, Battle Orders, with a decent amount of points into Natural
    Resistance to compensate for the big -100% blow to your resistances in Hell
    difficulty. Shout and Berserk should be invested into for the late game to get
    your magical damage up and your defense.
    In this section, I will not comment on specific weapons except to mention a few
    excellent items. I will, however, present the weapon and armor modifiers that
    are most useful to the Concentrator and describe them, so that you may assess
    yourself the quality of the items you wish to possess. Before that, several
    things should be remembered about the Barbarian Concentrator. First of all, you
    need a weapon that attacks relatively fast. Why? Well, the Concentrator doesn't
    have the crowd-control skills of a bowazon or a whirlwinder so he must attack
    one-on-one at a fast rate. For example, it's much better doing 1000 damage
    quickly than 2000 damage slowly in an area where monsters have around 750
    hitpoints. Fast attack rate is also important in order to be able to level up
    at a reasonable rate. The other thing to remember is that the Concentrator can
    be very vulnerable in melee range, and does much better with a shield. The
    conclusion: the best use of hands for a Concentrator is a sword/shield
    combination, since swords attack fast, and can be equipped on one hand for any
    sword, and shields are there for increased protection. Shields also often offer
    heightened resistances.
    Here are the modifiers that you are most recommended to have on your equipment
    without any particular order:
    + to Skills- This modifier is great because it boosts all your skills. This
    includes the masteries which provide you with passive bonuses, as well as the
    warcries and combat skills. When synergies are added in, we observe a chain
    effect and a lot of skills get significantly boosted. You can really improve
    your character with a few items with + to Skills (see the Skill Description for
    Battle Command for an idea of what happens with extra skill points).
    Magic Find- Some modifiers aren't must-haves, but really help you if you do
    have them. Magic Find is one of them. Try to always have at least 100% Magic
    Find at high character levels. A cheap way of achieving this is to socket
    perfect topazes into your helm or armor. This increases significantly your
    chance to get magic, rare, set, or unique items and even if you don't get the
    item of your choice, you can sell these to get money which you can then use to
    gamble or trade with another player. Magic Find means that, in the long run,
    you will have better equipment, and that can never be a bad thing.
    + to Attributes- Attribute boosts are good additions to an item's modifiers.
    Extra strength means you'll be damaging more. Extra dexterity means you'll be
    blocking more and hitting more often. Extra vitality means you'll be getting
    more life. And extra energy means you'll be getting a few more mana points. Of
    these, you should most value boosts to strength and dexterity, consider those
    to vitality, and disregard those to energy.
    Damage- Damage is, quite simply, the most important thing on a weapon. Damage
    is already the essential thing to think about for the Concentrator, and becomes
    even more important with the various skills and attributes you employ. An
    increase in one point in the damage of your weapon will end up meaning maybe 10
    points of increase after having gone through all the damage enhancement a
    Concentrator has at his disposal. Damage is all-mighty. A weapon may have all
    the modifiers in the world, but if it doesn't do the damage you need, throw it
    away. Learn to have the highest damage possible. And never forget the golden
    rule of the Concentrator.
    Defense- Just as damage is the number one characteristic for weapons, defense
    will be the number one characteristic for body armor and to a lesser extent
    helms and shields. The body armor should ideally have a DR of around 1500 and
    500 each for the helm and shield. As far as modifiers and items go, your weapon
    should be the main source of damage, your body armor should be the main source
    of defense, your shield should be your main source of blocking, leaving rings,
    amulets, helms, gloves, belts, and boots for all the other modifiers. While a
    1500 DR body armor without other modifiers is better than a 500 DR body armor
    with a few modifiers, the same DOES NOT APPLY to the other pieces of equipment.
    For example, if you have the choice between gloves with 100% enhanced defense
    and the same gloves with "Cannot be Frozen" and dual leech, take the second one
    without hesitation. The reason for this is that the defense rating difference
    isn't nearly as big on gloves, belts, or boots as on body armor. For example,
    the highest DR you can get on a body armor without enhanced defense is 600,
    while it's 71 for boots, gloves, and belts. Try to get the highest DR you can
    get on your body armor, but remember that it's not as important for other
    pieces of armor. With a high defense on your body armor, you can, however, get
    great defenses that will last you well into hell, as they will be strongly
    aided by bonuses from Iron Skin, Shout, and Concentrate.
    Increased Attack Speed- This modifier is great when you can get it, but it's
    not essential if you have a fast weapon. Think of it as a great bonus. More
    attack speed=more hits=more damage. The actual bonus damage is roughly equal to
    the increase in attack speed, so if you have a choice between a weapon with 20%
    increased attack speed and the same weapon with 10% enhanced damage, definitely
    take the first one.
    Cold damage- While this is not necessary, cold damage is a very desirable
    modifier. It serves two purposes. First of all, it will chill or freeze your
    enemies, making them much more manageable. It really helps when you're fighting
    a Prime Evil when he does anything twice more slowly. The second role of cold
    damage is to get rid of undesirable corpses. You don't want any corpses hanging
    around near Nihlathak or around Radament, now do you? So, you freeze them and
    kill them, and no more corpses to be seen, just water. This doesn't always
    work, but you have a good chance that a frozen corpse you attack will not leave
    any corpse. Cold damage is another one of those useful modifiers.
    Cannot be Frozen- One of the few ways to kill a good Concentrator is to freeze
    him, making movement and attack rate much lower than their original values. The
    Concentrator becomes a slow character that can't attack suitably and takes
    damage without dealing any. This is especially crucial against bowazons and
    sorceresses, who both have skills that allow them to freeze an enemy, run away,
    rinse, and repeat.
    Shield Block Percentage/Block Speed- In case you didn't get it yet, the main
    reason of having a shield is for the extra blocking. A block percentage of 75%
    really means your ability to endure attacks has been multiplied by 4. Think of
    it as 4 times more life. That's enormous. It's crucial your blocking percentage
    be way up there. The small cost of blocking is the time you take to actually
    block incoming hits. This can be significantly reduced by getting increased
    block speed. This ensures you'll block, and you'll block fast.
    Resistances- Keep these always maxed. It's as simple as that. The Concentrator
    should have no problem with melee damage thanks to his high defense and
    blocking, but that's no good with magic. The Concentrator can only rely on his
    Resistances to defend himself from the magic of the legions of hell. It is
    therefore crucial to keep them always maxed. This is especially true for fire
    and lightning, which deal the most damage. Incidentally, one of the greatest
    challenges you'll face are lightning-enchanted monsters. The answer to these is
    to kill them with as few hits as possible and to keep your lightning resistance
    maxed. You should have no problem with these if you can kill them in one or two
    hits with your great damage. A cheap way of boosting your resistances is to
    socket some perfect diamonds into a shield with a good blocking rate.
    Life and Mana Leech- Life and mana leech are two things the Concentrator CANNOT
    GO WITHOUT. While you only need a few mana leech percentages (2-3%) to keep
    your low-mana skills going, try to get as much life leech as you can (20%
    should be fine and it's not too hard to get to). 20% life leech means that you
    should be leeching A LOT of hitpoints per hit even in Hell difficulty where
    leech is divided by four. Life leech is as important as maximum life and should
    be considered as your ticket to free life. It will help a lot against any of
    the act bosses, or against any risk you ever have of running out of life. While
    mana leech will restore the mana you need to keep using your skills, life leech
    will return your lost life to you at an incredible rate.
    Damage Reduction-Damage Reduction comes in two forms. The first one is a fixed
    reduction in damage taken and can be physical or magical. These can be useful
    if they are in significant amounts. For example, -10 damage can be very useful
    for Nightmare mode, cutting physical damage from regular monsters anywhere from
    around 20% to 35% damage. The other form of damage reduction is a percentage on
    the damage you get. For example, with a shield that reduces 20% of damage
    received, you'll only get 40 damage from a normally 50 damage Blizzard. Damage
    reduction can be extremely helpful because less damage sustained allows you to
    live longer. A 35% damage reduction would be equivalent for example to 54% more
    life and a 50% damage reduction would be equal to 100% more life. Look out for
    the rare items with significant modifiers here.
    Always remember the potential of socketed items since they can sometimes yield
    great pieces of equipment. Also try improving valuable equipment you may
    already have by socketing them with jewels/gems/runes that will give them
    modifiers you need or prefer. Try not to waste good jewels/gems/runes on lousy
    items and good weapons with lousy jewels/gems/runes since you won't be able to
    hold on to jewels/gems/runes if you socket them. Runewords can also prove to be
    great choices for a good item if they give you the right bonuses at all stages
    of a game.
    There are several items that the Concentrator should really strive to obtain.
    These include, as of patch 1.09, The Grandfather sword, Stormshield shield,
    Arreat's Face, and Gladiator's Bane. Why these items? Well they present some
    great modifiers that aren't all available on magical or rare items. The
    Grandfather gives you incredible weapon damage, being the most damaging sword.
    It gives you a massive 50% bonus to your AR, which should already be very high.
    More importantly, however, it gives you get a bonus of 80 hitpoints to your
    life and you get a bonus of 20 to each of your attributes. This means you get
    an additional 80 base maximum life from vitality, 20% more bonus from strength,
    and better blocking and AR with dexterity. The Grandfather is THE sword for the
    Concentrator. Stormshield is another great item. It gives you 72% block rate,
    very close to the 75% maximum, as well as considerably faster block rate, great
    defense for a shield, an INCREDIBLE damage reduction of 35%, which literally
    means you will take 35% less damage, greatly increasing your survival
    potential. You also get a few resistances to cold and lightning and the icing
    on the cake, a bonus of 20 to strength for 20% more damage. Arreat's Face is a
    barbarian helm with decent defense (363 DR), faster hit recovery, another bonus
    to AR, life leech, +30% resist all, and +20 to both strength and dexterity,
    which helps. But Arreat's Face's most valuable modifiers are a certain +2 to
    Barbarian Skill Levels and +2 to Combat Skills. This means that Concentrate
    goes up by 4 skill points, as well as Berserk. This also means all your passive
    skills go up by two skill levels. The last piece of equipment I mentioned is
    Gladiator's Bane, a piece of armor with very high defense and a few great
    modifiers. This armor has great defense up to 1500 DR, and reduces both
    physical and magic damage by 20 damage points. This is pretty significant
    considering that even in Hell difficulty, regular monsters tend to deal at the
    maximum an average of around 75 damage points, and most deal much less. Poison
    length is also halved, in addition to faster hit recovery. Finally, the armor
    boasts a "Cannot be Frozen" modifier, which is essential to the Concentrator
    Barbarian, since he can be killed without it.
    Your Barbarian should try to avoid open field battles as much as possible. In
    other words, try to find a place where you won't get surrounded by the legions
    of Hell. Ideally, your battles should take place in narrow corridors or even
    doorways, where only a few monsters can it you at a time. War cries should be
    kept up constantly: Shout, Battle Orders, and Battle Command. Cast Battle
    Command first, and then cast the two others so that they benefit from the free
    skill point given by Battle Command. But since they all last something like 5
    minutes (!!), with the added durations of the synergies, you should have no
    problem refreshing them. The main attack of the Concentrator is Concentrate, so
    use that basically everywhere...except for two cases. The first one is a
    physical immune. The only way to deal with this is berserk, which should get
    most in one hit. Berserk can also be used in special situations, for example,
    against Hell Diablo, knowing that he has a 50% physical resist and 0% magic
    resist. Berserk is also the skill of choice when you are inflicted with iron
    maiden, since it deals only magical damage. Another alternative to berserk
    against physical immunes with low life is to use Concentrate, since the synergy
    of Berserk adds to Concentrate 1% magical damage for every point in Berserk.
    The other case is when you have a particularly nasty monster that is either
    constantly running away, teleporting, or has lots of minions acting as meat
    shields. In these cases, you use leap attack. This is, for example, the way to
    deal with unravellers or the Summoner in Act 2. And that's about all you have
    to know to play an awesome Concentrator.
    The best mercenaries for a Concentrator is a Holy Freeze Desert Warrior, which
    can be obtained in Nightmare mode as the Defense mercenary, and the Might
    Desert Warrior, which can be obtained in Nightmare mode as the Offense
    mercenary, both found in Act II. The Holy Freeze Mercenary's greatest boost to
    a Concentrator is that he helps him greatly in crowd control, an area where the
    Concentrator is kind of lacking. The Holy Freeze Aura at the maximum
    effectiveness will slow down enemies by 54%. This means that most monsters
    around you within a decent radius, will move 54% slower, and attack 54% slower.
    Monsters become easy targets that can be picked off one by one. The Holy Freeze
    Mercenary has a reasonable life, does excellent damage at a quick rate if
    equipped with a spear (speed is always the same for any mercenary), and
    benefits from the Barbarian warcries. He'll gain more defense as well as more
    life. A Holy Freeze Mercenary makes the Concentrator's life just that much
    simpler. The Might mercenary, on the other hand, increases your damage and
    therefore also your life leech. This will enable you to add even more damage
    enhancement to your Concentrator, allowing him even faster kills.
    While waiting to get those two mercenaries, you should choose either a Cold
    Rogue from Act I or an Ice Iron Wolf from Act III. Both will be able to slow
    down your enemies, although not with the same effectiveness or damage as the
    Holy Freeze Mercenary. They should help you get through Normal difficulty,
    Party Play
    Perhaps one of the Concentrator's most important attributes is that parties
    love him. He may not deal the damage of a sorceress or have the range of a
    bowazon, but the Concentrator can
    a) Use Warcries
    b) Serve as an Incredible Tank
    Warcries will boost the skills of the entire party by one level through Battle
    Command, which is great for all characters. Shout increases the defense of all
    characters by a great amount, which is very helpful for melee characters. And
    last but certainly not least, Battle Orders will raise the life, stamina, and
    mana for all characters. Your party will love you for this one since it
    essentially means you double how long your party can stand against monsters and
    how often spellcasters can use their spells.
    Barbarians can also be great tanks. With very high life and very high defense,
    the rest of your party members can attack monsters as much as they want without
    punishment, since the monsters will be missing their hits on your defense
    relatively often (30% chance to hit in Hell approximately with 75% blocking
    percentage makes only 7% of hits actually hit you). Werebear druids can also
    serve this task, but they are not nearly as effective as you are for dealing
    damage, and have other disadvantages generally.
    In terms of who you should be pairing up with, here's a few hints. You'll want
    at least someone who can deal damage that is not physical. Although you have
    berserk, it never hurts to be able to respond to all situations. Summonancers
    are awesome friends for the Concentrator because it's a mutual relationship.
    The Concentrator's warcries boosts all summons, and the Summonancer can cast
    Amplify Damage, which doubles the damage the Concentrator can deal and gets rid
    of physical immunity. Awesome curse. It's also a good idea to join up with a
    Hammerdin. Not only can these guys deal loads of damage, but they all use the
    Concentrator aura, which boosts your damage as well. At least one of your party
    members should have a might merc from Act 2 and another should have the holy
    freeze merc from Act 2. Boosts for everyone again. Weredruids can be useful
    with Oak Sage, for example, to add to everyone's life. Werewolfs are preferable
    since they can deal with monsters trying to surround the Barbarian by using
    A great party would therefore be:
    Concentrator w/ Warcries
    Werewolf     w/ Oak Sage
    Summonancer  w/ Amplify Damage
    Hammerdin    w/ Concentration Aura
     - Might Merc
     - Holy Freeze Merc
    There are, of course, many other great combinations which can work out very
    A good Diablo player will always have his hotkeys near him. Assign them to the
    keys you want, but have them closer to the lower part of the keyboard so you
    can hit them faster. Concentrate should always be assigned to your left-click,
    since it will be by far your major attack during the game. The mana leech from
    your damage should easily be able to compensate for the very small mana cost of
    Concentrate (2 mana). Therefore, there is no need to assign any hotkey to
    Concentrate. Your right-hand click should go into using berserk, leap attack,
    and your warcry triumvirate. Assign a hotkey to each one of these, and switch
    around when you need to. Finally, the most important use for hotkeys is the
    ability to use a town portal in a flash. It may sometimes be deadly to waste
    time opening your inventory and right-click on your town portal scrolls. So,
    assign a hotkey, and in dire situations, be prepared to run a bit away, hit the
    hotkey, right-click, and walk into the portal. While cases like this may not be
    frequent, you're never safe enough.
    All trademarks quoted into this document are property of their respective
    owners. This guide can only be found on the DiabloII.net, IGN, Neoseeker, and
    GameFAQs websites. If you see this guide or excerpts of this guide anywhere
    else, please contact me at: kristalsoul@hotmail.com. This guide may not be
    reproduced on any other site and in any format without my approval. You may use
    it or print it for personal use only, and may not modify it without my consent.
    If you wish to host it, please contact me at the above e-mail address.
    (c)2003 Andy Parker

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