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Diablo 2 Fallen Strategies #2: Debuffs part 2

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D2F Strategies #2: Debuffs part 2

This guide focuses on debuffs as described on the "Debuff as a magic effect" Wiki Page. These are the enemy spells and attacks that weaken or hinder your powers in some way. They may or may not cause damage. Burning, Poisoning, Open Wounds, and Damage over Time will not be discussed here because they only cause damage. Likewise player combat arts and god spells will not be listed because their debuff properties are easily visible in their tooltips.

 

I inserted Wiki links and pics where appropriate for further reading.

 

Weaken
"Weaken" is the secondary damage effect which lowers your attributes. It has a chance to trigger from any magic damage, whether inflicted by spells or weapons. However, these two magic spells have a bonus 30% chance to Weaken:

  • "enemy_magieball" - this the generic purple magic blob that enemies shoot at you
  • "enemy_electricity_shock" - this is the narrow lightning cone used by willowisps and dozens of other enemies in D2F

The modifier "Opponent's Chance to Weaken - X%" will protect from these effects. Magic armor and damage mitigation will lessen the effect by reducing the initial damage.

 

Some enemy attacks have a guaranteed attribute penalty as well. These can't be defended from by the above modifiers. The severity and duration of the penalty are dependant on the spell and the enemy's level.

  • "boss_fog_schwaechen" - a buff used only by the Mist of Miasma
  • "boss_fog_hurricane" - a storm cloud attack used by the Mist of Miasma, and harpy mages (Black Raptors)
  • "boss_scorpion_schmutzwolke" - a dirt spray attack used by the Garganthropod
  • "enemy_mutieren" - Primal Mutation, used by the Scaron, Thranak, Wyland Voidbringer, Daloriel the Depraved, and elite mechanical warriors in the Wastelands

 

Freezing and Movement Speed Penalty
"Freeze" is the secondary damage effect which lowers your movement speed. It has a chance to trigger from any ice damage, whether inflicted by spells or weapons. Almost all enemy ice spells also have a guaranteed slowing effect as well (think of it as a trade-off for enjoying much higher run speed in this mod). This means they can't be defended against by "Opponent's Chance to Freeze" or Ice armor and mitigation (these modifiers will defend against general freezing effects, just not the guaranteed slowing effects). The severity and duration of the movement speed penalty are dependant on the spell and the enemy's level.

 

One type of freezing attack to take note of is the Freezing Hard Hit. It has a guaranteed slowing effect. You can see its effects as a blue trail on the enemy's weapon or claws when they go to hit you.

 

These are the spells that will slow your movement that aren't ice-based:

  • "boss_scorpion_schmutzwolke" - the dirt spray used by the Garganthropod
  • "enemy_dragon_fly_pestball" - a large green poison ball/Area of Effect used by the Swamp Dragon
  • "enemy_quaelen" - Twisted Torment, used by Bog Demons, Father Dagon, Sinister Prince, Poison Lord, and elite Flying Eyes
  • "enemy_gedankenschlag" - Mind Strike, used by Scaron, the Evocator, the Banshee, and elite Flying Skulls
  • "enemy_faecherblitz" - Levin Array, used by dozens of enemies, you'll know it from the huge lightning cone. It also penalizes your attack speed.
  • "enemy_wirbelsprung" - Assailing Somersault, used by Izual

 

Attack/Cast Speed Penalty
A variety of attacks can penalize your attack and casting speed. This can be very frustrating, especially for weapon users. Here are some examples:

  • "enemy_blind" - probably the most infamous, this is the black cloud that surrounds your head and slows your attacks. Harpies and Olm in the swamp can use it. Many bosses, superuniques, and T-Mutations use it as well.
  • "boss_auge_traps_blind" - one of the Abishai's traps, with the same effect as the spell. Elite Du'Rach officers can use it as well in D2F.
  • "enemy_spider_net" - if you get webbed by a spider, you're suffering an attack speed penalty as well
  • "enemy_verderbensfluch" - Black Curse, used by elite Fiends (flying demons), Father Dagon, Ancient Kaa the Soulless, the Sinister Prince, and Witch Doctor Endugu

 

Attack Rating Penalty
While not particularly devastating, this debuff can be annoying when paired with other debuffs, like speed penalties.

  • "enemy_blind" and "boss_auge_traps_blind" spells combine attack rating and attack speed penalties
  • "enemy_area_weaken" - this is a hazy blue nova attack, used by dozens of enemies, notably Hydras, Gorebelly Elders, The Harpy Queen,The Summoner, Troll Shamans, Mechanical Assassins, and many others.
  • "enemy_standarte" - Elite Undead Tribunes can raise an evil battle flag, that, aside from boosting enemy power, penalizes your attack rating

 

Armor/Resistance Penalty

There are a few different ways enemies can penalize your damage resistance, none of them particularly common.

  • "enemy_area_weaken" and "enemy_verderbensfluch" (black curse) both will penalize your Physical Armor for a time. It can't reduce the value below zero. Physical damage mitigation can still protect you.
  • "shelob_frosty_lair" is a special frost Area of Effect made for the CM boss Shelob. It has a "lower armor" effect that is similar to the physical armor penalty, but it applies to all damage types. Your armor can't be reduced below zero, and damage mitigation will still protect you.
  • "enemy_icy_evanescence" acts just like the old Temple Guardian spell, in that it makes you more sensitive to ice damage. This applies whether or not you have any ice armor, and it can pierce damage mitigatiion as well, making it serious business. It's only used by 3 enemies: The Ice Lord, the Fury Broodmother, and the Summoner.
  • "enemy_loweresist" - this is a rare curse that makes you more sensitive to ice, fire, poison and magic damage types. It is only used by Baal and Nihlathak the necromancer. Very dangerous.
  • A few spells have a rare property that inverts your physical armor. So the more physical resistance you have, the more damage you take when you're hit by these spells. Damage Mitigation can still protect from it, but you'll need more of it as you'll be suffering more damage. Kral's Sonic Shriek has this property, as well as Shelob's Frosty Lair, and Mind Strike, used by Scaron, the Evocator, the Banshee, and elite Flying Skulls.

 

Root
Root is a very irritating debuff, particularly for melee characters, because it keeps you from moving. Luckily you can still use items, spells and ranged attacks, and if neccesary, teleport away. Some enemies that can root you are: the Octagolamus, the Succubus, Diablo, Andariel, Swamp Olm, Skeleton Mages, Orc Shamans, Lizard Priests, Thorned Hulks, Blood Valkyrie Shamans, T-Mutations, Cult Shamans, and the Swamp Dragon.

 

Baal has his own special poison root attack with ethereal tendrils It's also used by Ismail Vilehand. Web attacks used by spiders and Asmarael the Spider Queen effectively root you as well. And don't forget those pesky mechanical rooting traps.

 

The best way to directly resist this effect is to use the modifier "Block Chance: Root" or the more rare "Chance to Reflect: Root" (only available on the Paladin's Charge and Helgrotha's divine gift Salvation).

 

 

Resisting Debuffs
Apart from the specific defensive modifiers listed above, there is 1 direct defense against all the debuffs listed above: the modifier "Detrimental Magic Effects -X%".

 

It can be acquired in 3 different ways: As an item modifier, as a property of spells, and as the mastery bonus of the "Spell Resistance" skill. However it is acquired, this modifier reduces debuff duration and the intensity of the effect.

 

Detrimental Magic Effects -X% can be found as a modification on these spells: Druid's Cyclone Armor, Assassin's Burst of Speed, Amazon's Inner Sight, Barbarian's Iron Skin, and the Paladin's Prayer.

 

Another way to avoid these debuffs is to block or reflect the attack/spell that causes them in the first place. All of the "block/reflect chance: close combat/projectiles/combat arts" modifiers are useful in this regard. They can be found on a variety of items and spells.

Edited by Flix
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This guide has also been updated for Beta 6. The key thing that all the debuffs in this installment have in common is that they're all affected by Detrimental Magic Effects -X%

Mibbs has done a lot of great work on the Wiki regarding debuffs so don't hesitate to explore the links to the Wiki for more detailed info.

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