New Player Guide (1.2+) v1.05

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NLGElijah
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Table Of Contents with links

1. Introduction
2. Install Guide
3. Glide
4. DII Breakdown
5. From DII to Median
6. Characters/Builds
7. General Progression
8. Challenges
9. Gameplay Tips
10. Crafting/Runewords
11. Mercenaries
12. Cube Recipes
13. Drop Bias
14. FAQ
15. Credits

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Introduction to the Guide

Welcome everyone to my new player guide. I have noticed, especially this ladder, that a lot of people are checking out Median for the first time, coming back from a long break, and some have not even played DII. For this reason, I have decided to make a New Player Guide to hopefully help ease them into the game as the only other guide I see here on the forums is outdated. I will be using bits from Jaedong's guide ( viewtopic.php?f=40&t=574 ) to make sure I don't forget anything. I will be writing this guide to where people don't have to have played DII to be able to comprehend it as well. If you have played DII before and know the basics, skip the "DII Breakdown" section. To reduce the size of this a bit, each section will have the bulk of it in a spoiler, click on that to read the whole section. So without further delay let's get into this!

To make the guide (and others) easier to read, here is a list of all of the abbreviations used in the game: http://median-xl.wikia.com/wiki/Abbreviations

Installing Median and VERY Recommended extras

This section is for those who have some confusion about installing Median or are encountering errors, plus some extras that are very helpful to your overall experience. First off you will want to obtain Diablo II with version 1.13c installed. That is the version required to play on TSW (official Median servers). The Median launcher (explained later) will correct your version for you, but I have found that errors can pop up every now and then if you don't have the proper version to begin with. I will not explain how to obtain that version on here, because I would have to link to the files and such and am unclear about the rules regarding that.

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Now that we have all of that setup out of the way lets move on to the meat and potatoes, the DII Breakdown! (once again, if you are familiar with vanilla DII then skip this section. There is nothing here for you :P )

DII Breakdown

So you haven't played DII before eh? Don't worry, I got you fam. There's a few things you are gonna want to mess around with first. Click on "Multiplayer" on the title screen and click on "Create New Account". The account creation is fairly self explanatory so I will see you at the character selection screen.

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Other things from vanilla will be explained in more detail (ie: characters, builds, mercenaries, gear, etc) later on in the guide. If you need even more explanation, I suggest looking up a few videos on youtube, but you should get a feel for the game by playing it.

Make Glide Great Again

So if you are using Glide (which you should) for your Median graphics, then you have the option to make Median look a little bit better. Below are some configurations by Aerial that will Make Glide Great Again.

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From DII to Median

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So you have played vanilla (normal) Diablo II but never touched Median eh? Well this is the section for you! I will give a basic rundown of the major changes that Median has to offer, things that have been removed, etc.

So first off, difficulty names have been changed, all character classes have been overhauled and everything is overall different. No vanilla skills are leftover, as they would not fit into the balancing of Median. There is a lot more item customization, crafting has changed, there's plenty of uberlevels and bosses to keep you busy. There's a ton of new runes and gems, item tiers have changed (rather than three tiers, there are seven now), Merc's have been drastically overhauled, and every class is overall viable. There is no "best" class as all of them are capable of doing nearly everything given enough time and work on the gear. You can even socket throwing weapons and boots/gloves/belts too now. For more changes, please visit this page: https://docs.median-xl.com/doc/concepts/introduction

There are plenty more changes that Median has in store for you, but for now let's move onto the actual game content.

Characters and Links To Builds

So as stated previously, every class is viable on Median. Do you remember using an Assassin to MF on vanilla DII? Yeah me neither, but on Median with the right gear she is one of the quickest and best farming characters around. I will go over each class individually and explain the most "viable" builds currently available for them with links to guides that detail how to build them.

Amazon
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Assassin
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Barbarian
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Druid
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Necromancer
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Paladin
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Sorceress
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General Progression

So this section is gonna be a bit polarizing and difficult to make. Every person and every character likes/needs to do certain things at different times than others. So I will first go over "Act goals" for each act in each difficulty that MOST characters will want to hit. If your character doesn't need it, then cool move onto the next one. This section is mainly for those following miniguides that don't detail the game progression that well.

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So if you followed all of that you should be in Act V Destruction, level 120. Now to explain those Challenges.

Challenges

So there are four main challenges in Median and they are each VERY beneficial to characters. They are LC1, LC2, Ennead and Black Road Challenge (BRC). I will only be going into detail about the BRC due to the others being fairly simple. I will provide a link to each of them as well so you can look up more info.

Level Challenge 1: https://docs.median-xl.com/doc/quests/levelchallenge1
Level Challenge 2: https://docs.median-xl.com/doc/quests/levelchallenge2
Ennead Challenge: https://docs.median-xl.com/doc/quests/ennead
Black Road Challenge: https://docs.median-xl.com/doc/quests/blackroad

Black Road Challenge

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General Gameplay Tips

So a lot of these will be fairly obvious to some veteran players, but I will make a compilation of tips I like from the following thread ( http://forum.median-xl.com/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=1527) here so that there is a decent list. I may also add some of my own if they don't show up.

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Crafting/Runeword Tips

Alright so this section is very vital during the Mid/End game, which is why it is separate from the General Tips section. When you start working on ubers you will wish you had that 3% extra damage reduction or 20% ED on your armor. Maybe you will regret not having the -10% enemy resist you could have rolled on your body armor? In any case this is the section for people who want to bring their gear to the absolute limit. Note: You can easily spend an hour trying to roll the perfect base item for your runeword, but the effort is usually worth it.

    Runewords
    You only need one rune for 98% of all Median Runewords. Fill up all of the sockets EXCEPT the last one with Jewels, then add the rune.
    If it is an item you are gonna use for awhile put some time into it. Craft your jewels (see below) and take the time to get good rolls on it.
    To reroll a superior item, use an Oil of Renewal, it will reroll its affixes and sockets.
    The range of stats for a weapon are: 11-35% Enhanced Damage, 11-150% Attack Rating
    The range of stats for armor is: 11-35%
    You can add sockets with the Act V quest reward, or by using the socket punch cube recipe. (the item plus 1-6 jewels depending on how many sockets you need.
    Note that only items without sockets can get socketed. If you get good rolls and it has low sockets there isn't anything you can do except keep it or reroll.
    To get a few extra stat points, you can luck trial each of your jewels for the runeword. Those stats add up after awhile.
    You can reroll a runeword by unsocketing/resocketing the rune/jewels. To do this use an oil of disjunction with 3 perfect gems and the item in the cube.
    You can look up Runewords here (https://docs.median-xl.com/doc/items/runewords)
    You can look up Base Item stats here (https://docs.median-xl.com/doc/items/baseitems)
    When making base items for Runewords, shoot for 30%+ ED. That is generally a good number. Also make sure to land the Luck Trial for another 20%.
    Ethereal items can only be socketed with Larzuk's quest in Act 5.
    You can also get 1% damage reduction when doing Luck Trial on armor, which is very helpful. I recommend to keep trying until you get the 20% ED and 1% DR.
    The max values on base items (counting landing the luck trial) are 55% Enhanced Damage/Defense, 250% Attack Rating (weapons), and 1% Damage Reduction (armor).
    When rerolling a superior item, if it rolls the Enhanced Defense the Base Defense will always be max. Weapons don't have variable base damage.
    Look at the Base Items page listed above if you want to see if your base defense is high or low.
    Another note about Socket Punching: Tiered items have a max amount of sockets depending on their tier. Check the base items page above to see that limit.
    When rerolling a runeword via unsocketing and resocketing, any MO's and oils (luck and conjuration) you applied prior to the runeword being made, will be kept.
    Anything applied after socketing will be lost when you unsocket.
    In Act 5 on Destruction in the side areas (red portals + Icy Cellar) you can find Oils of Conjuration.
    Oils of Conjuration can be cubed with a weapon for 40% chance to add 10% spell damage.
    If you use the Oil of Conjuration you can NOT use the Oil of Luck.

    Shrine Crafting
    As with the runewords, take your time and roll good gear. Shrine crafting is tedious but can provide you end game gear relatively cheap.
    It is helpful to have two of an item you are crafting. That way you can wear the best one until you roll a better one without having to settle on a bad roll.
    Use the Shrines page (https://docs.median-xl.com/doc/wiki/shrines) to look at the modifiers each shrine can give.
    Use the best shrine for your build to maximize your stats.
    Use the affixes page (https://docs.median-xl.com/doc/wiki/affixes) to find out all of the potential rolls you can get on your gear.
    Same thing as the Runewords section as far as Jewelcrafting. Take the time to make good ones.
    Note: All crafted items always spawn with max sockets.

    Jewel Crafting
    If you are wanting to use gear such as Sacred Ancient armor and don't have many charms yet, you can roll -requirements on jewels to help.
    Check the affix page listed in the Shrine crafting page to look up Jewel rolls as well.
    All Jewelcrafting bonuses are listed on the cube recipes page (https://docs.median-xl.com/doc/items/cube).
    To guarantee that Jewels will roll the best stats, only use jewels found in Destruction difficulty. It does matter where you get them from.
    A jewel dropped in destruction can only be rolled about 6 times for crafting before the item level is too low to get max stats.

Mercenary Mini-Guide

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This will be a rather brief section as all of them are useful to certain characters. Mercenaries are very powerful on Median and are worth investing in their gear. They can solo certain ubers for you on Destruction if you build them correctly. Another factor to consider is that they gain your Magic Find. For example, if you have 500 MF and they have 500 MF, if they kill a monster it will count as a 1000 MF kill. You do not gain their MF though, so it will still be 500 mf on your kill. Here is a link to the mercenaries page so you can find more info about them. (https://docs.median-xl.com/doc/class/hirelings) If you are using one of the character builds listed above, they will likely go into more info on which merc would be the most beneficial for your build.

Very Common/Useful Cube Recipes

All cube recipes are useful in certain situations, but I will thin out the page and showcase the most commonly used cube recipes. I recommend using ctrl+F to search this section easier. For a detailed explanation about these and the full list, visit the cube recipes page here (https://docs.median-xl.com/doc/items/cube)

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Drop Bias

This is a section that I really find useful for new players, and veterans. Below will be a list of every uberlevel that has a drop bias, and what that drop bias is. For the new players, an area that has a drop bias has a higher chance of dropping that item. For example, Tran Athulua has a Unique drop bias, so you will find unique items much more frequently there.

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FAQ

So this section will be a placeholder at first, but if I notice questions asked frequently on here that aren't answered in the guide, I will answer them below this.

Credits

So here is where I'd like to take a moment to thank people who helped me in some way with this. It would have taken much longer to gather the information without them. More people will be added as I get feedback about this.

    Thanks Jaedong for writing the old Beginner's Guide which helped me make sure I didn't leave anything too obvious out.
    Thanks Random Onions for putting up with me discussing this guide for the last four days and bouncing ideas back and forth.
    Thanks Rishab for checking out the guide beforehand and giving me some feedback on it.
    Thanks Nitz for your many suggestions. Most of them have been incorporated into the guide.
    Thanks Unda for your contributions as well. You talked to newer players and got feedback from the target audience of this guide. It is appreciated.
    Thanks Aerial for making the Glide tutorial. You will surely be helping many people Make Median Great Again.

    Thanks whoever is reading this and making my time spent worthwhile. Without people who take the time to read this and give me feedback, I would have typed this for absolutely no reason.

-Elijah
Edited by NLGElijah 4 months.
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HechtHeftig
I paid 10$ for this.
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The part about book of summoning is wrong. It drops in destruction Difficulty. And I think it‘s called black tome now.

Haven‘t read much about it, so I can‘t say „great guide“ just yet. But I appreciate your effort! Thanks for that!
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Looks great! Will use your guide link on my stream for newcommers, it was exactly what i needed.
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Nitz
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Sorry if it sounds harsh, isn't meant that way, nice work many new people can profit from stuff like this and it will clean up the short questions thread.

I would explain LC1 better. Many people ask if you can cube only 1. And then many people cant find it, they go to Athula and get wrecked. Link a map maybe.

In the BCR quest the path for doing the trial of blood is not ideal, right next to ice is such a blink way and if you do the way in the map you provided why not lure them together in the middle without any blinks?

And for the trial of greed mention that you can farm the Trojan Jungle for Signets of gold super fast.

In the progression - instead of baalruns til lvl 65 I would suggest better spots for that, like hatred cows/extra areas in A5, K3BA, Trojan Jungle

>While running you have zero defense, walk speed is increased in Median.

Blocking is decreased by or to 1/3 too. The def is not just 0 it would be as if you were lvl 1 too. The whole get hit calculation is replaced by - get hit!

>Book of Summoning: now drops from The Summoner on Terror difficulty

Yeah it's black tome and D difficulty now.

>You can add sockets with the Act V quest reward, or by using the socket punch cube recipe. (the item plus 1-6 runes depending on how many sockets you need.

Only if the item has 0 sockets.

>The range of stats for armor is: 11-35%

And a defense value from like 1k to 1.5k. That can make a nice difference if you go for 300% ed.

>Shrine Crafting

Talk about ilvl. If you just want the shrine bonus and MO space do the rare ring+rare amulet + rare sacred item = Rare sacred item with ilvl 1.
You can make rare sacred items with the charsi quest. Which returns a white item as a rare item with ilvl = char level +4 on any difficulty.

>Jewel Crafting

A jewel found in dest can be crafted 6 times before the ilvl gets too low and should be replaced.

>Any non-sacred item + Oil of Enhancement + Arcane Crystal x2 → reroll item as unique

Mention that this is a good way to get unique rings not just all tiered uniques. Most people oversee that.

At the explanation about Zon I would remove the mention about defense. And at sin add the hokage guide.
Edited by Nitz 5 months.
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aerial
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No need call t6 barb "cheesy" :) Can say many things about it, but all ubers are beat straight up, not bug abusing or anything. You don't even die a lot in comparison to doing it with some casters.
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I don't think it's Black Tome @hecht and nitz. It's Dark Tome, I believe.
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Also Holy Caster is better than unholy caster at the moment, theres already a guide on it on the forums.
viewtopic.php?f=40&t=19187&hilit=holy+caster
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NLGElijah
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I made most of the changes mentioned above, also added Nitz to the credits. Yeah the Book of Summoning bit happened while copy/pasting some stuff from the old guide to here lmao. Saw the catalysts were correct and didn't notice the book of summoning part. Also added the guides you guys have suggested. Thank you for the feedback :)
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Nitz
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NLGElijah wrote:Thank you for the feedback :)


Damn, I already used my cookie on LH up there. Thanks.
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NLGElijah
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Nitz wrote:
NLGElijah wrote:Thank you for the feedback :)


Damn, I already used my cookie on LH up there. Thanks.



No problem, you took the time to help me improve the guide (hence the v1.01 because of all of the changes) which overall helps out the whole community. So you helped out everyone :)