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Beginner Guide

Last Updated: November 22nd 2023

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This Beginner Guide gives an overview of what the game has to present and some brief explanations of how things work. Diablo 2 has many specific concepts, we break these concepts down into a more digestible list from the names of things, what you're looking at, and even installing the game.


  1. Download and install the Battle.net Launcher from Blizzard.com.
  2. Open up the Battle.net Launcher and make sure you have purchased the game.
  3. Select Diablo II: Resurrected and install the game.
  4. After the game is installed play the game!


Game Settings



  • Display Mode is the actual screen setup on your monitor. If you want it to be Full Screen or Windowed.
  • Resolution is to adjust for specific screen sizes.
  • Resolution Scale controls the Resolution as a percentage.
  • Sharpening controls how sharp the edges in a picture are.
  • Brightness adjusts the game's brightness on your screen.
  • Vertical Sync helps to prevent screen tearing with powerful graphics cards.


  • Graphic Presets has a custom mode that keeps a saved profile for you.
  • Texture Quality adjusts the quality of the in game textures.
  • Anisotropic Filter helps smooth out distant shapes and the strain on your hardware.
  • Ambient Occlusion Quality improves lighting in the game.
  • Character Detail adjusts the character's graphics quality.
  • Environment Detail adjusts the environment's graphics quality.
  • Transparency Quality
  • Shadow Quality changes the quality of shadows.
  • Anti-Aliasing helps eliminate the pixelized look.
  • Dynamic Resolution Scaling helps you maintain a framerate with resolution adjustments.
  • VFX Lightning Quality helps give more lightning detail.

Legacy Video Options

  • Game Resolution adjusts the old graphics screen settings.
  • Lighting Quality adjusts the lighting quality of the old graphics.
  • Blended Shadows smooths out shadows in the old graphics.
  • Perspective Mode changes the way you see the game slightly.
  • Contrast adjusts color differences.


  • Sound adjust the overall sound in the game.
  • Music adjusts the overall music in the game.
  • NPC Speech allows you to select whether NPCs have Audio and or Text when interacting.

Audio Accessibility

  • Disable Reverb disables echoes.
  • Preset allows you to have different sound modes for different situations.
  • Voices adjusts the volume of the games voices and voice lines.
  • Sound Effects adjusts the overall volume of various interactions.
    • User Interface adjusts the volume of selection sounds.
    • Items adjusts the volume of inventory items, drops, and pickups.
    • Monsters adjusts monster audio.
    • Skills adjusts the volume of all Skills in the game.
    • Ambient adjusts the background audio.
    • Combat adjusts player effort, impact, explosion, weapon, and gore sounds.


  • Item Label Display
    • Toggle
      All items on the ground permanently show up, when toggled.
    • Hold
      Show Items on the ground while holding the hotkey. Default is "Alt".
    • Timed
      Mix between Hold, and Toggle - Causes the items to show up when hitting the hotkey. After a few seconds, the item display goes away.
  • Auto-Gold Pickup
    • Activating this option allows your Character to pick up gold while walking over it.
  • Auto-Party Invite
    • Activating this option causes you to instantly invite players / accept their party invite upon entering a game.
  • Default Key Bindings
    • Legacy
      Hotkeys are set to the default Legacy key selection. E.g. F1-12 for Skills.
    • Resurrected
      Control hotkeys are set to a modern "ergonomic" key selection.
    • Custom
      Sets all hotkeys to the keys of your choice.

User Interface

  • Show Item Tooltip Button Prompts
    • Allows you to compare an item with your Characters equipped item in that slot by holding "Shift".
  • Show Life Orb Text
    • The Life Orb shows the current and maximum numeric value of your Character.
  • Show Mana Orb Text
    • The Mana Orb shows the current and maximum numeric value of your Character.
  • Show Ammo Count on Skills
    • Shows the numeric value of ammunition when using Skills that require projectile Weapons.
      • E.g. Remaining Arrows show on the Skill in your Skill selection.
  • Show Clock
    • Shows the current time.
  • Chat Gem Mode
    • Manual
    • Automatic


  • Chat Font Size
    • Adjust the font size of Chat in-game.
  • Large Font Mode
    • All fonts are increased in size for better readability.
  • Color Blind Mode
    • Adjust different color codings depending on the color-blind type selected.
  • Color Blind Strength
    • Adjust the color-blind mode in accordance to the Strength you require.
  • Camera Shake
    • Removes any screen shake in the game. E.g. After Duriel is killed.
  • Attack Miss Indicator
    • The word "Miss" shows up when your attack is not successful.
  • Subtitles
    • Any spoken text in the game has a subtitle in chat.
  • NPC Greetings Subtitles
    • Any spoken text in the game has a subtitle in chat.


  • Cursor Sensitivity
    • Adjusts the stick sensitivity.
  • Weapon Swap Separate Skill Buttons
  • Controller Vibration
    • Enables and Disables vibration on your controller.
  • Swap Thumbsticks
    • Changes the primary Thumbstick to the other one.


  • Automap Size
    • Adjusts the Map from a small side map to a full-screen map.
  • Automap Opacity
    • Adjusts the transparency of your mini map.
  • Center When Cleared
    • Recenters the mini map onto your Character.
  • Show Party Members
    • Shows your party's names on the mini map.
  • Show Character Names
    • Shows the Character Name on Town Portals.
  • Show Game Name and Password
    • Allows you to hide the Game Names and Passwords everywhere (In-Game, On Game creation, on Game selection)


There are 3 difficulty modes in Diablo 2.

  • Normal is the difficulty you start the game with.
  • Nightmare is the difficulty that unlocks after the Baal Quest is completed in Normal. It makes monsters harder and lowers your overall resistances.
  • Hell difficulty is unlocked after Baal Quest is completed in Nightmare. It makes monsters harder and lowers your overall resistances.


  • Hardcore is a mode of the game you can select upon your character creation. This mode makes it so when you die your character becomes unplayable.
  • Softcore is the default version of the game and gives you a penalty when you die. This penalty consists of Gold and Experience loss in Nightmare and Hell.

Game Versions

  • Classic is the original version of the game pre-LOD expansion pack with only 5 characters and other limitations.
  • Lord of Destruction is the Expansion pack for Diablo 2 and introduced new items, 2 new classes the Druid and Assassin, Act 5, and much more.


The Grail or Holy Grail is a challenge to find all of the Unique and Set items in the game. This can sometimes also include Ethereal Uniques, Runes, and Runewords.

Single Player

Single Player is offline play in a game of your own. Main differences are static maps (maps do not randomize from game to game), and selecting the Player Setting.


Speedrunning is a an activity of going through the game as fast as possible to your best ability. Typically a race to Normal or Hell Baal.

The Secret Cow Level

The Secret Cow Level is a place you can enter with only cows in it. You can create the red Portal entrance by transmuting wirt's leg found from Tristram and ]Tome of Town Portal in Act 1's Rogue Encampment after you finish Baal's Quest.


Quests are objectives found in the game based on the Lore of the game. These Quests can have specific items tied to the Quest with various rewards such as A Jade Figurine and Potion of Life.


  • Ladder is a mode where people can create a character or "Ladder Character" and compete on global leaderboards!
  • Non-Ladder is where all the past "Ladder Characters" go after a new Ladder starts. This is commonly used for PVP as these characters will remain Non-Ladder for the rest of their existence.


PVP stands for Player vs Player and is a common activity for players to fight each other for glory and bragging rights. This is done with the Hostile function in the party screen.


Rushing is the action of getting fresh characters pushed through the game with the assistance from someone's much stronger character.


Trading can be done in Multiplayer with other characters by clicking on their character in town. Almost anything can be traded.


Durability Quantity and Ethereals

  • Most gear in Diablo 2 has a durability that gets used up upon hitting or taking a hit depending on if it is a Weapon or not.
  • Throwing weapons and items have a quantity to them, meaning you can only throw a certain amount before you have to repair them. Repairing them replenishes their quantity.
  • Ethereal items have a lower durability and but always drop at their max value. They cannot be repaired after the durability runs out. A broken item cannot be used.

Item Types

  • Normal items are the base versions of items which can be both inferior or superior and also ethereal. Normal Resource.
  • Magic items have at least 1 affix or modifier to them and can have up to 2, a Prefix and Suffix.
  • Rare items have at least 3 affixes and up to 6, 3 Prefixes and 3 Suffixes.
  • Set items are named items that gain bonuses when having more items of that same Set or group of items. Set items Resource.
  • Unique items are named items with unique stats. Unique Resource.
  • Crafted items are items you can create by using the Horadric Cube and specific recipes. Crafted Items Resource and Horadric Cube Recipes.


Runewords are specific combinations of Runes put into a Base Item to create an item with very powerful, magical properties.

Scrolls and Tomes

  • Scroll of Town Portal and Tome of town portal open up temporary checkpoints. At almost any time you can open up a Town Portal to go back to town saving the location you were just at.
  • Scroll of identify and Tome of Identify allow you to Identify items that are Unidentified.



Acts are chapters, settings, or portions of the game which present a specific feel to surroundings, monster types, and combat. There are 5 Acts in the game:

  • Act 1 is a forest wilderness with caves and a cathedral.
  • Act 2 is a desert with desert temples.
  • Act 3 is jungle and old dark mossy temples.
  • Act 4 is a battlefield of the angels and demons in the depths of Hell.
  • Act 5 has a snowy atmosphere with frozen caves, and a fortress under siege by Baal's minions.

Red Portals

Red Portals are special locations you can enter which are unique to that area, sometimes tied to quest progression, or can be crafted with recipes such as The Secret Cow Level or Uber Portals.


Vendors are NPCs (non player characters) from town that sell you gear, equipment, and services.

  • Gamble Vendors sell Unidentified items for a high price of gold with the chance of getting something good.
  • Gear Vendors sell you different types of gear like weapons and armor.
  • Healing Vendors will instantly cleanse you of most negative effects and bring all your main resources to 100%.
  • Mercenary Vendors enable you to hire a personal helper by your side and resurrect him when he dies.
  • Potion Vendors enable you to buy potions such as Healing Potions and Mana Potions.
  • Repair Vendors can repair gear pieces that have a durability.


Waypoints are Diablo 2's checkpoints. At any time you can enter specific areas of the game from town or other Waypoints after you have collected its Waypoint.


Diablo Clone

The Diablo Clone is a very tough boss that spawns replacing the first Super Unique Boss you come across after selling The Stone of Jordan to a merchant (1 in Single Player and 75-125 in Multiplayer). Upon Diablo Clone's death the Annihilus drops.

Monster Types

  • Bosses are generally referring to Act Bosses and Uber Bosses but can include side Quest Bosses.
  • A Super Unique is a named boss monster typically with minions, is static to that specific area, and drops more loot than regular Unique Groups.
  • Unique Groups spawn as 1 boss monster and a pack of 3-6 Minions of the same monster type. The boss spawns with one Elite Affix in Normal, two Affixes in Nightmare, and 3 Affixes in Hell.
  • Champion Groups or blue packs are spawn as 2-4 of the same monster, with special abilities and Stats based on the type of Champion they are.
    • Resource for Unique Groups and Champions.
  • Normal monsters are just the filler enemies that are generally themed for a specific area.


The Ubers fight is endgame content available to you after Baal Quest in Hell is completed.

  1. To fight the Uber Bosses, you must have 3 red Portals opened in Harrogath by putting the Key of Terror, Key of Hate, and Key of Destruction into the Horadric Cube.
  2. Fight the bosses in the Red Portals Lilith, Uber Duriel, and Uber Izual for Mephisto's Brain, Diablo's Horn, and Baal's Eye. They have a 100% Chance to drop.
  3. Combine the Organs to open a red Portal in Harrogath, which leads to Tristram, where you face Uber Mephisto, Uber Diablo, and Uber Baal. Upon the death of these Uber Bosses you will be rewarded the Hellfire Torch.

Gameplay Mechanics

Affixes and Stats

  • Stats and Affixes are what defines an items abilities and function. Certain items have certain amounts of affixes or modifiers to them.
  • Super Uniques and Uniques also have stats that can spawn on them that may boost resistances and different attributes about them.


Auras are passive area buffs or debuffs that come from either bosses, players, or mercenaries and have a limited range.


Breakpoints determine how fast an animation takes to finish an action in the game. Such as Faster Cast Rate or Faster Hit Recovery.

Character Sheet

The Character screen give an overview of your characters stats. This includes your Name, Class, Level, total Experience, Attributes, Damage values, hit mechanics, Life, Mana, Stamina, and Resistances.


Death is when your Life hits 0. There are different death consequences in Diablo 2:

  • Normal = Loss of Gold.
  • Nightmare = Loss of Gold and 5% Experience loss.
  • Hell = Loss of Gold and 10% Experience loss.
  • Hardcore Death = Cannot play that character any longer.


Experience is what your character receives after a monster is slain. With enough Experience gained you can level and raise the overall power of your character.

Horadric Cube

The Horadric Cube is a relic of a bygone era that allows for amazing transmutations to create items from your wildest dreams. Using specific combinations of items you'll find along your travels you can create wondrous Crafted Items, repair and recharge your gear, and combine necessary quest items into their legendary artifacts.


The Inventory screen displays all of the gear and items you have equipped as well as any items you may be carrying on your person.

Life Mana and Stamina

  • Life is quite literally your living essence displayed! Life does not regen on it's own. When your Life hits 0 you are dead.
  • Mana is the energy source of your Skills and abilities. Mana will regen on its own, slowly. When your Mana hits 0 you can no longer use some Skills.
  • Stamina is a display of how long you can run. Stamina will regen if you are not actively running or attacking. When your Stamina hits 0 you are forced to walk.

Magic and Gold Find

Gold Find (x% Extra Gold from Monsters), also known as "GF", and Magic Find (x% Better Chance of Getting Magic Items), also known as "MF." GF increases the amount of gold that drops. MF increases the chance of finding an item of higher rarity. See the resource here.


  • A Mercenary is a NPC you can hire to fight along side you. You can gear this character with a Helm, Weapon, Armor, and sometimes a Shield.
  • The Mercenary screen gives a quick overview of the Gear, Skills, Life, Resistances, and Level of your Mercenary.

Party Screen

The Party Screen gives you a list of the people that are in the game including their Class and Level.

  • Partied players will show up green and show their location. You will also share Experience with them while close to them.
  • Neutral players show up white. You will not share any Experience with a Neutral player.
  • Hostile players will show up red.
  • Separately Partied players will show up orange. You will not share any Experience with anyone in a separate party.

Player Count

The Player Count or Player Settings in both Single Player and Multiplayer increase the drop rate of items, the Experience gained from monster kills, and the damage monsters deal. Certain Skills and damage modifiers also scale with Player Settings. For casual and elite gamers alike, the number of players you bring into a game will have a significant impact on your gameplay.

Resistances and Immunities

Resistances reduce the damage taken from specific damage sources. For example if you have Cold Resistance you will take less Cold Damage. Monsters can be immune to specific damage making that damage deal nothing to them. Curses and Auras can break some immunities with specific power levels.

Skill Tree

The Skill Tree displays what Skills are available to your class with 3 different Skill Tabs. At the very top it displays the Skills that are available at Level 1 and Skill unlocks in increments of 6 Levels up to Level 30.

  • Prerequisites are the Skills that have an arrow leading to that desired Skill. You must point a Hard Point into these in order to put additional Hard Points into your desired Skill with Prerequisites.
  • Skill Level is the Level of your Skill which is displayed with a number in your Skill Tree in the bottom right square of your Skill.
  • Hard Points are the Skill Points you physically put into a Skill from Quest rewards or Level-Ups (Base Points) and they Max out at Level 20. Hard Points synergize with other Skills.
  • Soft Points are the Skill Points you gain from buffs or gear with +x to Skills. They don't add their Synergy bonus.
  • Synergy is the term used when one Skill gains a bonus from another Skill shown on the bottom of the Skill's description. Example Blessed Hammer receives a 14% Magic Damage Bonus Per Level of Blessed Aim and Vigor (Hard Points Only).

Shrines and Wells

  • Shrines are valuable boosts to your overall gameplay that give you instant temporary buffs, or restore your resources.
  • Wells clear effects off of you and heal you partially, instantaneously.


Area of Effect (AOE)

Area of Effect is a term generally used in combat for attacks and abilities that cover an area or can hit multiple targets at once such as Blizzard.

Crowd Control (CC)

Crowd Control is a term used for abilities or effects that cause fights and monsters to be disrupted or distracted from their normal patterns by manipulating combat to your advantage.

Damage Over Time (DOT)

DOT is a form of damage that applies damage for a duration before expiring. Poison Damage or Open Wounds are common examples of DOTs. DOTs in Diablo 2 prevent monsters from being able to heal.

Hit Chance

In Diablo 2 there are actual chance to hit mechanics. Characters that attack have a chance to hit while the defender with a shield equipped has a chance to block and or dodge the attack. Characters that cast their Skills generally just rely on the animation hitting the targets, they are not bound by the same attack mechanics.

General Game Tips

Class Specific Tips

Area Specific Tips


Original Author BTNeandertha1
Reviewed by MacroBioBoi

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