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Different subtypes
02-25-2003, 09:13 PM
Post: #1
Different subtypes
Maybe It's just because I'm used to playing D2, where a character is described almost totally by it's skill point distribution, but how do you distinguish between Arty mages, tan mages etc?? Don't all D1 characters eventually max all of their stats anyway? Therefore, If you make an arty mage, you would evenually max your Dex, through elixers/shrines etc, and still be pumped full of mana, so why not have a high AC? Also, how would having high AC reduce your magic firepower if you eventually max stats anyway? I don't see how variation comes into play EXCEPT at low levels. (though from what I've read, most people more eperienced at D1 state the opposite.) I just don't understand. What sacrifices are made.

Basically, my mentality for D1 is this.

Mage- get lots of mana soon, fnd stuff tat adds to spells, read books, kill stuff.
Warrior- Get stone curse, get armour and stuff, hit stuff, watch stuff die.
Rogue- Get god bow, shoot

I could see the difference between the variant playstyles and the "main" builds. But I just can't distinguish between the primary builds for each class when I can't see where any sacrifices are made between each build. Hopefully someone could enlihten me...very, very slowly. Remember, I'm a D2 kid. :huh:

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02-25-2003, 09:34 PM
Post: #2
Different subtypes
Hail Albion Child,

The Tan Mage wears tan robes, while the arty wears a smock ;)

In all seriousness, the Tank Mage clunks about in heavy armour, well defended from attacks as they blast everything around them (including allies :P); Arty Magi sacrifice defence for +skills and mana. And there you have it: some subclasses :)

Other subclasses would include Axe Warriors and the like. They are still played effectively the same as the common class, but have some slight differences.

May the wind pick up your heels and your sword strike true.
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02-25-2003, 10:00 PM
Post: #3
Different subtypes

It is the trade off in the equipment that makes most of the difference. For instance, an Arty mage would have a Thinking Cap (reinforced by a couple of Hidden Shrines), NAJ's light (paper) plate, and an Arch-angels staff of something (wizardry is a typical choice). That brings the spell levels of everything to 20. It also means that you have effectively no armor in hell. You'll stop as many attacks naked as with this get up.

A tank mage, OTOH, needs good armor. But good armor has a strength requirement. So, you typically give up all five bonus to your spell levels to get the AC, the resists, etc.

In reality, it doesn't much matter except for speed. A naked mage or even a beyond naked mage can do a 3@30, so any additional support from equipment is inessential -- just icing on the cake.

Basically, the same is true of the other playing styles, except that rogues and warriors need equipment more than do mages. But, in every case, it is a trade of one thing for another. So that a warrior can try for sufficient AC to get good protection in hell/hell or he can try for enough dex to get good blocking. And so forth.

The details take many pages to get into, and some of the trades are matters of opinion and still debated amongst the various proponents of various styles. A good place for more info is the strategy section of the Lounge Bolty's High-Level Warrior Strategy Guide and Low-AC Warrior and Equipment Guide cover the two main warrior styles.

Claudio's pages have a fair bit on Rogue styles. The controversy about who "discovered" them does not negate their usefulness. Claudio's pages are at Just follow the D1 link and look at the guides.

There are many other sites that have info. Some are now dead. But the links from the lounge are a good place to start. And hopefully some of the other Lurkers still have good sites bookmarked and will share.


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02-26-2003, 09:40 AM
Post: #4
Different subtypes
Think about it this way: In Diablo 2, a playing style is roughly defined by the skills the character uses. In Diablo, a playing style is roughly defined by the skills the player uses. The tactics which a player wants to use determine the kind of items that player will seek out (and, in the early game, how he distributes stats). Since you don't have to invest in these tactics like you do for skills in D2, it is possible for a Diablo character to change playing styles at virtually any time, although for some reason many people like to make one character for each style they use (probably because the "best" gear is different depending on your playing style). When a few playing styles can make use of mostly the same set of items, you will sometimes see characters that change back and forth between them. Also, on many occasions a D1 player is forced to choose one playing style because the equipment needed for another style is not yet available.

For an example, consider what I would call the "traditional" style warrior. This guy goes for high AC and high life for defense, and relies almost entirely on his melee ability for offense. His mana supply is a big priority, because he only uses spells occasionally. Given the choice between a Royal Circlet and a Godly Helm of the Whale, he might choose the GHoW. Getting surrounded by multiple monsters is never a problem as long as red potions are available, but the lack of spell-power limits this player's offensive capability somewhat.

From there, we have various shades of warrior styles which progress away from the high AC and high life in favor of high Dexterity and high mana. It leads to the other extreme, which is the berzerker or LAW. These characters have very low AC, very high Dexterity, and relatively high mana. They take advantage of this extra mana for things like offensive spells, extra stone curse, and "telekilling" witches, while the high Dexterity makes them very good at one-on-one melee, but the lower AC (and possibly lower life) mean that they cannot stand up to as many monsters at the same time. Thus, extra tactics have to be employed to avoid getting swarmed by monsters.

But from there we can take another step, getting rid of the melee weapon, equipping a Dreamflange, going for the absolute most magic/mana possible, and killing everything with spells (or stonecursing/statue cracking as necessary). A warrior of this type, the turtle mage, can be every bit as powerful as the others, but there are obvious advantages and disadvantages involved.

Now, looking at these three warrior playing styles, they will all start out pretty much the same. Progressing into the mid-game, the player may be not be able to choose the style he really wants right away. For example, he may decide not to act like a turtle mage until he is able to find a Dreamflange and some +mana jewelry. Late in the character's life, he will have had a chance at just about any gear he wants, and the style desired by the player will determine what he ends up wearing. Again, there is a two-way relationship between what he is wearing and what tactics he employs to kill the monsters. In some cases, the differences in tactics is very subtle. In other cases, like switching into a turtle mage, the entire set of tactics changes completely.

On a semantic note, I think it is good to stay consistent with terminology as much as possible. A character who follows a general philosophy but is not restricted by any specific rules is using a "playing style". A "variant", by contrast, follows a system of specific rules for the life of the character. When I started following the DSF, "Sub-class" used in the same sense that "variant" is now; BNM was a sub-class of sorcerer and Barbarian was a sub-class of warrior.
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02-26-2003, 05:06 PM
Post: #5
Different subtypes
Quote:His mana supply is a big priority, because he only uses spells occasionally.

NOT a big priority, I believe. :)

- SoulEdge -
"*burp* too many pots, I need to pee..."
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