BTNeanderthal is a full-time Diablo 2 content creator that has been streaming since 2016. He holds a variety of accolades in both modded and un-modded D2, including a current world-record Paladin speedrun. He has, on more than one occasion, been the first to attain max level in specific categories, and he has had the tenacity and techniques to acquire exceptionally rare and valuable items.
Published on July 21st, 2021
Last updated on September 19th, 2022
In this guide, we cover the Rushing Strategies to get new Characters to end-game areas. This is commonly called Grushing, and Grush which stands Glitch rush or Game rush. Rushing through the Expansion is slightly different to the Classic rush (Crush). The Rushing Strategies are Hardcore friendly, especially with great communication between the Party and the Rusher. You can offer “Grushes” as a service, making them a source of income.
In a Grush there are 3-4 roles, each with specific tasks during the Rush.
Runner is an extremely important role for the entire rush to go smoothly. There should always be 1 designated person for this role! Their tasks are:
Open all Games. The Normal game needs to be opened by a Character that hasn’t completed Quest 6 in Act 1.
Make sure everybody is partied up!
Enters all Town Portals of the Rusher to complete Quests
Quests are transferred to the entire party as long as they are in the same Act.
If you die at any point, STAY DEAD! The Quests are still completed, even if you are in the “You have Died”-screen.
Communicate with the Rusher and Party to make the Act transitions as smooth as possible.
The “Bumper” can take over the Runner role in Nightmare and Hell, making the original Runner a Leecher. This is recommended for Hardcore, as it reduces the chance of Death.
Leechers typically make up 0-6 Players in a rush. This role can make the first game if their Character hasn't completed Quest 6 in Act 1. They can also make the future games in Nightmare and Hell if the Party desires. There are minimal yet important responsibilities in this role. Most of the work is accomplished from the other roles. We use the exact same strategies for all difficulties as a Leecher. Be sure to stay Partied up at all times.
Teleport to objectives, open Town Portals (TP), and kill Quest targets.
Communicate with your team if your TP is safe. This is especially important on Hardcore! “1” is commonly used to signal a safe TP, while “2” or no message are the signal for unsafe TPs.
Be sure to stay Partied up at all times.
DO NOT open games as the Rusher!
We need to have the following Waypoints in Normal, Nightmare, and Hell for this rush to go smoothly:
Catacombs Level 2
Far Oasis Lost City Arcane Sanctuary Canyon of the Magi
Spider Forest Flayer Jungle Lower Kurast Travincal Durance of Hate
River of Flame
Frigid Highlands Ancient's Way World Stone Keep
Bumper role is only relevant for Expansion rushes. Unlike Classic, there is a Level Requirement to get into the next difficulty. A Bumper should be Level 40 without Normal Baal Quest (Quest 6 in Act 5) completed. The reason we call this a "Bumper"' is because we can "bump" past the Ancients Quest (Quest 5 in Act 5) and enter the next areas, most importantly the Throne of Destruction to kill Baal's Minions and finally Baal to complete the Quest for you and your Party.
The Bumper does NOT open any games.
Can take over the Runner Role in Nightmare and Hell for increased safety. This makes the Grush more Hardcore friendly.
Be sure to stay partied up at all times!
Ancients in Normal require Character Level 20+ to complete Ancients in Nightmare require Character Level 40+ to complete Ancients in Hell require Character Level 60+ to complete
This means you can have UP TO 3 Bumpers for the rush, one for each difficulty. Hell Baal Quest is relevant for Hell Cows and Ubers.
Go to the east most side of town above Meshif and wait for the portal from the Rusher.
When the TP appears, go in and kick the Altar, pick up the Amulet of the viper and head back to town.
Pick up the Horadric Cube the Rusher drops for you to transmute the Horadric Staff later.
When the Rusher opens a Town Portal in the Maggot Lair Level 3, enter this area and grab the Staff of kings from the Sparkling Chest and head back to town.
Put the Staff of Kings and the Amulet of the viper into the Horadric Cube and click “Transmute” to create the Horadric Staff. Take it out of the Horadric Cube so it's available for use later.
Talk to the closest person in town and wait by portals for the Arcane Sanctuary TP. DO NOT GO IN until the Rusher has communicated it is safe. (usually done by saying 1 for safe and 2 or nothing for not safe)
Wait inside Arcane Sanctuary until The Summoner dies, after he is dead, come back to town and talk to the closest NPC. Confirm to the Rusher the symbol of the correct Tal Rasha’s Tomb by opening up your Quest Log and clicking on Quest 6, which reveals the symbol.
Get to Act 3
Wait by the portals again for the "Tal Rasha’s Tomb" TP.
Enter the TP and put the Horadric Staff into the Orifice by clicking on it and placing it into the menu and hitting Accept button below.
You can stay outside of Tal Rasha's Chamber until the Rusher has killed Duriel for safety. After Duriel is dead, run to the end of the chamber and talk to Tyrael.
He opens a Portal for you, take the Portal and look for the Harem level 1 TP opened by the Leechers in town.
Take the Portal to the Harem Level 1, use the stairs to return to Lut Gholein and talk to Jerhyn. Travel back to the Harem Level 1 again, and use the same TP to get close to Meshif. Talk to him to sail to Act 3.
Search for The Claw Viper Temple in Lost City and make a safe TP next to the Tainted Sun Altar in The Claw Viper Temple Level 2. (Type 1 when safe)
Head back to town and drop your Horadric Cube near the portals and go to the Far Oasis.
Search for the Maggot Lair and find your way to the "Chest Room" in Maggot Lair Level 3, with Coldworm the Burrower, open the chest, and make a safe TP. (Type 1 when safe)
Find The Summoner in the Arcane Sanctuary and open a TP in a safe area close to the plateau he stands on. Make an extra effort to NOT KILL THE SUMMONER before the Runner has entered your TP.
Note: If you kill him by accident, you have to either escort the Runner all the way to Duriel or make a new game to try again.
Figure out the correct Tal Rasha's Tomb by either asking your Runner/Party or checking which of the symbols is missing next to The Summoner.
Make your way to The Orifice located inside the correct Tomb and make a safe TP.
Now you have a small amount of time while the Runner sets up the Duriel fight for you. Use this time to sell your Tome of town portal to Farah and buy it back. (refilling the quantity instantly for cheap) Note: this works for all quantity Items except Ethereals.
Go back to kill Duriel then IMMEDIATELY head to Act 3 Spider Forest Waypoint to reveal the campsite and go back to town.
Now that we are in Act 3 town, leave out the front entrance to find the Spider Cavern in the Spider Forest.
Make a safe TP next to the Golden Chest inside the Spider Cavern for the first Organ, Khalim's Eye.
Go to Flayer Jungle Waypoint to reveal the campsite and then enter Flayer Jungle from the Lower Kurast Waypoint.
Search for the Flayer Dungeon Level 1 near the Optional Quest The Gidbinn.
Find the Flayer Dungeon Level 3 and make a safe TP next to the Golden Chest for the second Organ, Khalim's Brain.
Finishing Khalim's Will
Enter the Kurast Bazaar Waypoint to find the Sewers Level 1 and make a safe TP next to the Sewers Level 2's Golden Chest for the third and final Organ, Khalim's Heart.
Now go to Travincal, make a safe TP within 2 screens of the actual Council Members until the “Runner/Bumper” shows up and then kill all the Council Members.
Make sure they have access to Khalim's Flail as they need it to smash the Compelling Orb and continue their progress.
Take the Durance of Hate Level 2 Waypoint and head to Durance of Hate Level 3.
Once in Durance of Hate Level 3 you as the Rusher need to make the area safe for a TP in the center circle next to the Red Portal, this sometimes means killing the Council Members in this area to prevent Hydras from spawning and killing your Party Members.
Once someone enters the area, kill Mephisto. Head straight to River Of Flame after he is dead.
Now that we are in Act 5 go into the Portal for the Siege on Harrogath Quest (Socket Quest) if the Rusher is supplying this.
Wait in Act 5 town until the Baal Quest is done. After Baal dies, there will be music playing and Quest 6 is done.
Nightmare and Hell
If you are playing Softcore, just repeat this for the next difficulties. If you are Hardcore then it is recommended for the Bumper to take over the Runner role for Nightmare and Hell as it is just safer.
If you are feeling generous or want Socket Quests, you can go to Frigid Highlands and make a safe TP on the right of the stairs in the Bloody Foothills and then kill Shenk the Overseer when the first person is inside.
If the Bumper doesn’t have the Ancients Quest completed in the current difficulty, take the Ancients Way Waypoint and head to the Arreat Summit. Open a TP and kill the Ancients as soon as the Bumper enters the Summit. Then use the Waypoint to the Worldstone Keep and teleport to the Throne of Destruction.
If the Bumper has the Ancients Quest done, take the TP they prepared in the Throne Room/Worldstone Chamber, whatever the Bumper was able to prepare.
Kill the Waves, Baal and join the new game as soon as it opens.
Once we get to Nightmare Act 5 you need to wait for the Portal to Arreat Summit for the Ancients quest from the Rusher, hide and stay alive. If you do end up dying, STAY DEAD!
After the Ancients Quest is done, go back to town and wait for the safe TP in the Throne of Destruction.
When you're in the Throne, stay behind the Rusher to gain a bit of Experience and stay alive.
After Baal Waves are dead, follow Baal into the Worldstone Chamber. Again, it is important that if you die, you STAY DEAD until the quest is complete!
There are only a few things to say about Classic rushing also known as Crushing. Crushing does not require a Bumper, since we don’t have to deal with a Quest that has a Level Requirement (The Ancients). It can be more efficient to have 2 Rushers, however, this is not required. Something very important to note though about Crushing is that you must get to Hell Act 3 before you convert to Expansion if you choose. If you revert earlier, the game will put you back into Nightmare, and you'll need to Level-Up to 40 or find a Bumper after all.
Den of Evil (Quest 1). This quest found in Blood Moor gives you a Skill Point from Akara and the ability to respec once per difficulty. Note: In order for this quest to be complete, the person who needs the quest has to kill at least 1 monster in the Den of Evil and be in the area upon the last monster dying. However, for additional players that also need the quest, they only need to be in Act 1 for it to be completed.
Radament's Lair (Quest 1). This quest in the Sewers Level 3 gives you a Skill Point from the Book of Skill that drops from Radament himself. Note: The Glowing Super Chest that drops the Horadric Scroll is not needed for this quest. This requires a person who needs the quest be within 2 screens of distance upon Radament's death.
The Golden Bird (Quest 1). This quest gives you 20 Life from the Potion of Life that Alkor gives you upon giving him the quest item The Golden Bird. Note: The The Jade Figurine is only able to drop by an Elite Pack killed by the person that specifically needs it. You also only need to talk to Meshif then Alkor to complete this quest (Cain is not needed).
Turn in The Gidbin to Ormus for a random Rare Ring.
Lam Esen's Tome (Quest 4). This quest grants you an additional 5 Attribute points upon returning Lam Esen's Tome to Alkor. Note: This quest is always in the Ruined Temple, the mossy temple with stairs facing South West direction inside the Kurast Bazaar.
The Fallen Angel (Quest 1). This quest gives you 2 Skill Points upon Killing Izual in the Plains of Despair and returning to Tyrael. Note:Izual always spawn right above a fissure in the ground. Only requires a person who needs the quest be within 2 screens of distance upon Izual's death.
Hell's Forge (Quest 2). This quest in the River of Flame gives you Gems and a Rune upon smashing Mephisto's Soulstone at the Forge. Note: If there are multiple people in Act 4 that all need this quest, it will drop all the Gems for each of them but only 1 of the Runes. It is common to unparty for this quest in Nightmare and Hell Difficulties to save that chance at a higher Rune.
Reward 1: A random regular, two random Flawless, and one random Perfect Gem. Reward 2: A random Rune between
Siege on Harrogath (Quest 1). This quest at the end of Bloody Foothills gives you what is commonly known as a Larzuk Quest or Socket Quest after killing Shenk The Overseer which allows you to add a socket to a Weapon, Armor, Helmet, or Shield. Note: Only requires a person who needs the quest be within 2 screens of distance upon Shenk's death.
Prison of Ice (Quest 3). This quest gives you The Scroll of Resistance (a permanent +10 additional All Resistances on use) from Malah upon saving Anya in the Frozen River. Note: The Rusher can talk to Anya while in the Frozen River to trigger Malah to give someone the Malah's Potion upon talking to her.
Make sure whoever makes the games had Quest 6 in Act 1 (Andariel Quest) available.
Bumper should be Character Level >=40.
Make sure everyone is in the same Act before completing key quests.
Make safe TPs and communicate when needed with your team (1 = safe and 2 = Not safe)
Talk to Cain or other NPCs in town if you get stuck!
Make sure you are in the correct difficulty!
Be aware as the Rusher of how many TPs you have.
As a Rusher, use Waypoints like Spider Forest or Flayer Jungle to help discover the map.
This is a service, and it’s common to ask for a player's Hellforge Quest / Socket Quest as payment for this service.
I personally think Grushing is one of the most fun things to do if you have an experienced team, and you time it to be competitive! Making it a game of great organization is a great way to enjoy this much desired chore. I hope you guys found this helpful. GET OUT THERE AND CRUSH IT or GRUSH IT!