I've been playing video games since the tender age of four. As a result, most of my articles are related to video games.
Diablo 1 Strategy Guide
This article will list tips and tricks to help you beat the original Diablo video game on PC—or at least help you get your footing. I dedicate this article to those of you who have recently decided to pick up a copy of this excellent classic.
Diablo sets itself apart from most other games of the genre (even from its own sequel!) because, although you can potentially wipe out whole groups of enemies by blindly throwing yourself into them, that approach rarely pays off. It's much better to use a healthy dose of strategy.
With that said, here are some general tips, tricks, and notes that will help out new players.
Assorted Tips and Tricks for Beginners
Here are some assorted tips to help you on your way.
- Save frequently! If you die, you have to reload, and backtracking stinks!
- Teleport is your friend. Use it and abuse it once you get it, especially if you're not a Warrior.
Shops, Items, and Gold
- Most shop items aren't that good. Those that are will probably be too expensive for you unless you luck out. What I'm trying to say is: Don't buy items from shops.
- Monsters tend to drop gold and items when you kill them. Of particular note are items that have a gold name. Those are Unique and will never be sold in shops. Most of them have drawbacks to compensate for their benefits.
- Addendum to the previous tip: Quest items also have golden names. They're just as Unique as the item drops, but for different reasons, as you may have figured out.
- Wirt, the one-legged kid sitting all by his lonesome, will charge you 50 gold just for looking at what item he's selling. It's a gamble, but, on occasion, that item can be pretty good. Just make sure you take a lot of money, as the items he sells are rarely cheap. (10,000 gold or more is a ballpark figure on how much those items of his cost.)
- When shopping over at Adria the Witch's shop, keep a look out for spell tomes for Fireball, Town Portal, Fire Wall, Holy Bolt, Healing, and Lightning. Mana Shield is pretty much essential as well for Sorcerers.
- Two-handed weapons hurt, but can also get you killed when you're unable to block incoming shots and are surrounded.
- Always keep your items in adequate repair. (And I don't mean the Warrior repair skill if you're playing as one—although that one can be useful to repair items you intend to sell.)
- Items that drop to 0 durability are permanently lost!
- Always keep at least one Scroll of Town Portal with you. You may need to make a hasty retreat from a dangerous situation. And even if you don't, remember what I said about backtracking.
- Most monsters don't know how to open doors. Abuse this fact when looking into rooms that have openings you can shoot into (mostly Rogues with bows and Sorcerers with spells).
- Always use chokepoints to single out foes. You may feel like you're indestructible—a feeling that's most amplified when you're a Warrior or a Sorcerer with good spells. But trust me, all it takes is one unchecked monster to wreak havoc.
- Avoid the Black Death like the plague! Each successful hit they land on you drains your maximum HP by 1, permanently. (If you're a Warrior, I hope you have Holy Bolt by this point.)
- Fallen Ones and their kin (Carvers, Devilkin, Dark Ones) are cowardly. Kill one, and any others in the immediate area scatter until their morale is restored. Don't get cocky, though; a group of them is still dangerous.
- Skeletons are resistant to damage from blades, such as swords and daggers. They take extra damage from crushing weapons, though.
- As you kill more enemies of the same type, you gain details about them: such as the hit point range those creatures are known to have, as well as any spell resistances and immunities they may have as well. Use this knowledge wisely!
- When Dark Ones demand a Sign from you: Don't give it to them. It was the tavern owner's to begin with. (If you get this quest, you'll understand the hint.)
- Chances are you'll get the Butcher quest in your first playthrough. Clear the level he's in first, and then save the game. Give him a trial run. If you can't beat him, backtrack later when you're stronger and have better items.
- Against King Leoric: Holy Bolt is your friend. If you don't have it, I hope you have a bunch of Mana Potions for Firebolt (Sorcerer), a bunch of Healing Potions to help you slowly whittle him down to size (Warrior), or you may just have to backtrack because bows don't help much against him (Rogue).
Tips for Warriors, Rogues, and Sorcerers
Here are some tips for each of the specific classes in the game.
- It's always good to use the good old sword and board strategy. That is, always use a one-handed sword and a shield.
- You'll still want Holy Bolt and Healing tomes. Town Portal can't hurt either, if you manage to muster up enough mana to use it.
- You should always have a belt with eight Full Healing Potions. At the very beginning of the game, you'll have to make do with regular Healing Potions. But upgrade these to full ones as soon as possible.
- Allocate your stats on level-up like this: 2 points in Strength and 1 in every other stat.
- Always use a bow. Once you get more game experience, you can risk fighting in melee. But as a beginner, you should always use a bow. Play to your strengths!
- Try to always have a belt with five Full Healing Potions and three Full Mana Potions. Rogues can cast spells decently, but you'll probably need the health more.
- Allocate your stats on level-up like this: 2 points in Dexterity and 1 in every other stat.
- Try to always have a belt with three Full Healing Potions and five Full Mana Potions. Once you get Mana Shield, you could try having a full belt of mana. But that's a strategy for when you're more experienced, as it's very risky.
- Allocate your stats on level-up like this: 2 points in Magic and 1 in every other stat.
Jon on March 06, 2017:
My Strategy Guide
Personally i've always gone with the best players advice. Whoever achieved the most Paragon or had the most understanding in game mechanics or theorycrafting as they call it was a reliable source of info. So this is my list of some tips i've gathered so far.
Levelling as fast as possible is basically harvesting as much xp/xp per hour as you can using what you know to do it. The worst player will take his or her time and look at their weapon and starting skills and think a lot then go out and kill stuff maybe starting in story mode if the've heard of leoric crown (headscratchers will end up at 5hours+ to hit 70). The best players think differently, they know seconds count from experience playing RTS like starcraft, they will run in a coffee'd up/pissed off mood because their char is moving so slowly to their follower to steal that weapon because it doubles the damage of the start weapon. Anyhow...
1-5 (5 mins or less)
Know your char that you want to play and name/skill charts equip etc before you start and have an idea of friends who will be in your group if they will show up. Get on TS early for when it goes green and the season starts.
4 Man group asap with a leader preferably (who knows and can direct the group to leave game to reset/direct to boss or keep any eye on the weak players in the group if any)
Team gets the weapons from followers and hits the boss on Master. Kulle is best if you're lucky.
6-10 (up to 11min mark if lucky and group stays together for XP Bonus)
Greater Rift (Lower to Normal)
What to expect: Nothing except blues/white (Leoric May drop 1 at a time for the group later)
fill up on that stuff.. go to town buy rings at tristam vendor
at each level make sure you craft a weapon or have a good one (yellow)
use mystic to change any Crowd Control to +EXP
Grind Neph Rifts until you can kill faster. When you have killing power move to Master.
Each person is responsible to make sure their weapon is up to their current level at each fillup. Without that you're not contributing to the group fully and it adds time to push a 4 hour or less (1-70) grind fest into a 5+ hour session.
Each person is also responsible to watch their level and head for density when about to level. Doing this over and over drives the kills up and xp up. It's rare to have expert members in the party who can do this and know skills inside out and how to combine them for max efficiency.
1 - Boss
7 - Rings are buyable at Tristram
18+ Gems Drop (Put Red in Helm and Weapon) Green in weapon doesn't work cuz crits dont happen enough despite what sheet dps says.
20 Leoric Crown
42 Ability to forge and reduce level 60 weapon to lvl 42+
Patch 2.4 reduced XP for 4man and Gear XP. So
The standard solo is 6-8min GR running like keys are not an issue. Use pools because most people can't run like a machine non stop for an entire hour or more. If possible group for speed with chars that are just as fast using debuffs and buffs. You'll have to put in more hours competing with the meta team players.
The highest XP gains are from the Flavor of the month Meta because of the over powered damage who always take the lead on the leaderboards. If you make the right kind of friends this is possible right away, in public less often. Keep in mind high end meta calls for changing gear for the highest kind of squishiness if you're dpsing and trust in the support so a good group can make an 80+ seem like a 70. Do that over and over with a movitated team and you're golden.
Sarah Forester from Australia on February 07, 2014:
Now this takes me back to the original Diablo, such a great game of its time!
Darrin Perez (author) from Puerto Rico on January 11, 2012:
@Cagsil: I don't mind at all. Feel free to give even more gems of wisdom if you wish. I found out about the Witch trick a short time (relatively speaking) ago, completely by accident. It's pretty useful if you're a Sorcerer, as spell selection can make or break your game.
Thanks for reading and commenting! :D
@raciniwa: It's a great game. Glad you liked the hub! Thanks for reading and commenting!
raciniwa from Talisay City, Cebu on January 10, 2012:
oh, i'm an avid player of Diablo thanks to my husband who encourages me to play along with him...even if the game gives me hyper acidity yet i realize that this is the best way to face our fears...thanks for writing this awesome hub...
Raymond D Choiniere from USA on January 10, 2012:
Very nice Winterfate. A good hub for the beginner player of Diablo. I have been playing the expansion pack "Hellfire" for many years, almost as long as the original game has been out. The "Hellfire" addition came out about 1 month after Diablo came out. So much better that's for sure. However, I would like to give the beginner even more knowledge, if you don't mind, which you haven't included in your hub.
(a) When visiting the Witch in town, after you buy something such as a spell book, read the book and save your game. Then reload your game and her items change. This also works with Pepin the Healer. It doesn't work with Griswold the blacksmith. If you want to change his stuff, then you have two options (a) go deeply into the church or (b) save your game(thus saving your character) and start a new game.
Knowing these few things will be able to help beginning characters accumulate spell books from the witch, as long as your character has the money to buy them. There are a few other tricks, but nothing that a beginning character can do, so I'll leave it there. :)
Gino D on October 13, 2011:
Nice post ..should help me in my adventures later tonight!