- 1 Making Sockets
- 2 Forging
- 3 Level Requirement Penalty
- 4 D-stoning/Gem Melding Caps
- 5 Life, Vit and Max Life bonuses
- 6 Examples
Max Socket Number Limitation by ilvl
The ilvl of the target item also limits the max socket number of an item, as well as the max socket number in the database base item page. Additional sockets are available from ilvl 25 and 40.
|ilvl 1||ilvl 25||ilvl 40|
Larzuk's Quest Reward
- White (Normal/Superior/Low Quality) Weapons and Armor: Larzuk makes the maximum number of sockets allowed on the base item, as long as the item level is equal to or higher than 40. As a rule of thumb, the items dropped in Nightmare Act 3 and later can have the maximum sockets.
- Magic Weapons and Armor: Larzuk makes one or two sockets randomly. Because you can make up to 3 sockets on a magic item by a cube recipe in ES, it's a bad idea to ask Larzuk to make sockets on magic items.
- Other Weapons and Armor (Rare, Crafted, Set and Unique):' Larzuk always makes one socket. Because you can make up to 2 sockets on rare weapons, helms, body armor and shields by a cube recipe in ES, it's a bad idea to ask Larzuk to make sockets on these rare items.
- The socketing recipes cost higher for upper items, so it's most efficient to ask Larzuk to make sockets on Elite items, if possible. But you don't have to stick to this principle too much, because the difference of the costs can be insignificant in end games, and Larzuk's reward has some restrictions as stated above.
- Magic Weapons and Armor: The recipe makes up to 3 sockets. Of course the socket number is capped at the maximum socket number of the base item.
- Rare Weapons, Helms, Body Armor and Shields: The recipe makes up to 2 sockets.
- Rare Gloves, Belts and Boots: The recipe makes only 1 socket.
- Crafted/Set/Unique Weapons and Armor: The recipe makes only 1 socket.
- White Weapons and Armor: The recipe can make any number of sockets.
- Non Secret recipes rerolls the white items, which means all Ethereality, Superiority and Low Quality are removed. Staffmods are also removed/rerolled. Don't use the non-secret recipe to socket that +3 Frozen Orb / +3 Blizzard / +3 Cold Mastery staff you just found.
- Secret recipe 16 and 17 make sockets without removing these properties. Of course it's better to use non secret recipes for Low Quality items. Superiority is always welcome because the repair cost of Superior items is very low in ES.
- You can make a Socket Donut from a Unique Dagger, if the gold is more precious than the time (ie. "if you are poor"). You can gamble a Unique Dagger cheaply with a level 1 character.
- The socketing cost is generally cheaper, so it's one of the most frequently used enhancements even in early and mid games.
Socketing Amulets and Rings
- Secret Recipe 12, 13, 41-48 can make a socket on these items. Charms generally get bigger if they have a sockets.
- Unique Amulets and Rings of LoD (cubed from Ancient Coupons) are spawned with a socket.
- Legacy (LoD) Crafted Amulets and Rings are spawned with a socket.
Socketing Arrow and Bolt Quivers
- Only Normal (White) quivers and Magic quivers can have a socket.
- You can activate all Gemwords and some Runewords on Normal quivers
- Forging adds skill bonus or some other good bonus without any penalty. But one item can have only one Forging mod at once.
- Please imagine an invisible socket besides the conventional sockets, and you can put a bonus there.
- Forging can be removed later, to apply another Forging. Most of the Forging materials are refunded at that time.
|All Skill Forging||Yes||-||-||-||-|
|2/3 Rune Forging||-||-||-||-||Yes|
|Aura Forging||Mag/Rar/Set/Uni Amulets|
- Adds +1 To Class Skill Levels. (+1 To Amazon Skill Levels, etc.)
- The skill levels are very important, especially for casters, but also for melee characters. Other enhancements like D-Stoning can't add a Skill bonus, so why do you use the precious Forging room for other bonuses?
- All Skill Forging (Secret Recipe 40) adds +1 To All Skill Levels. This is very expensive, but can boost oskills and mercenary's skills.
- Adds some bonus like Max Life and Enhanced Damage, four times as much as a D-Stoning.
- Skill Forging is generally prefered, but Stat Forgings are also used if there is some reason. For example, the damage of Multiple Shot doesn't increase with the skill level, so Multiple Shot Zons will prefer Enhanced Damage to Skill Bonus. Or a character may need more Life than more skill levels, and have no room for D-Stoning Life.
- Also, Stat Forging is often used for mercenary's equipment, because Skill Forging is useless for mercenaries and All Skill Forging is very expensive.
- Adds the properties of the runes to the item.
- As stated in Stat Forging, Skill Forging is generally prefered. But Rune Forging with low runes is cheap and useful for early games. (ex. Instead of making a socket and putting a Ka (=Nef) rune, you can apply Ka Forging, which is cheap and handy.)
- Some properties like Cannot Be Frozen and Ignore Target's Defense can only be added by Rune Forging.
- If you have an ultimate ethereal item and like to add Indestructible to it, "Wo (=Zod) Rune Forging + Skill Forged Unique Jewel" is better than "Skill Forging + Wo Rune". Wo Rune Forging costs 2 Wo Runes, but is worth considering because getting 2 Wo runes ISN'T impossible in ES.
- Adds "Aura when equipped" to an amulet.
- Of course very strong, but it requires an Aura Stone cubed from the highest unique class amulets.
- Adds Skill Tab Bonus to a magic or rare jewel.
- Why can't you apply Skill Forging to magic and rare jewels which seem weaker than Unique ones? It's because rare jewels can have a Skill Bonus, and magic jewels can have an All Skill Bonus as a prefix. If you can apply Skill Forging to magic and rare jewels, you can have +2 skill bonus on a jewel, which is too strong.
2/3 Rune Forging
- Adds 2/3 of the properties of the runes to a magic or a rare jewel.
- You can select which properties are applied, weapon mods or helm mods.
- Some properties like Knockback and Cannot Be Frozen can't be divided and fully work.
- 2/3 Rune Forging is cheap and handy. If you're planning to socket a Ka (=Nef) rune to a bow, why don't you apply 2/3 Ka Forging to the best jewel you have at that time?
D-Stoning / Gem Melding
- To cube a Dragon Stone (D-Stone) or one of its alternatives with an item to enhance the item.
- Gem melding is a kind of D-Stoning, with different materials and different effects.
- You can apply D-Stoning to any equipment (Weapons, Armor, Amulets and Rings). You can't apply D-Stoning to Charms, Jewels and Quivers.
- You can add a key or a stamina pot to the recipe to select the added mod.
- You can't remove D-Stonings from the items. But if the item is rerolled, applied D-Stonings are also canceled.
- Each mod has its cap. (ex. 900% for Enhanced Damage, please see the next next section.) The mods added beyond the cap are ignored, and only the level requirement increases.
- Secret Recipe 50 can remove the level requirement penalty by 1, but is rarely used because it's very expensive.
- Lower level items aren't always weaker in ES, because lower level items can be applied D-Stoning more times. Before you apply base upgrade (normal -> exc. or exc. -> elite), you have to consider which is better, Defense from the upgrade or the room for D-Stoning. Base upgrade of Weapons and Body Armor are generally worth considering. But base upgrade of small pieces like gloves and belts increases less Defense, and is less attractive in ES.
- The level requirement penalty is added to the requirement of the item itself or the socketables, whichever is the highest. For example, if you need to socket a req level 60 jewel, it makes no difference whether the level requirement of the item is 1 or 60. If you like to utilize the low level requirement (20) of Achilles set, you need to insert a socketable with req level 20 or less. Generally, it's effective to insert low req level socketables into low req level items, and high req level socketables into high req level items.
- Gem Melding can be more effective than D-Stoning in many cases. D-Stoning strength will give you +4, Gem Melding an Perfect Amethyst into a helmet will give you +4 to strength and Damage Reduced By 1. If you need both Life and Mana leech, Gem Melding Perfect Skulls will give you +1 to Max Damage in addition to the same total amount of leech. Gem Melding Perfect Obsidians into the weapon will give you more +Enhanced Damage and Deadly Strike than D-Stoning both. Still, you may prefer to D-Stone +Enhanced Damage on the weapon and Deadly Strike on another item. Check the mods on Chipped Gems and compare them to the mods D-Stoning grants. The Helmet and Boots are especially good for Gem Melding as you can't Gem Meld the other items which use the Helmet Gem Type (Rings/Ammulet).
- To cube a monster's organ with an item to enhance the item.
- Unlike D-Stoning, Tinkering doesn't add any level requirement penalty. Instead, the Tinkering point is determined when an item is generated, and if you use up the Tinkering point you can't apply Tinkering any more.
- Tinkering point varies betwen 15 and 25, and most Tinkering recipes consume 1 point, but some recipes consume more points.
- You can't buy monster's organs, so you'd better stock the organs as possible. But you don't have to scrimp too much, because you can't do Tinkering infinitely, and you'll get more organs than you need for the end game gears.
Level Requirement Penalty
- The following recipes give level requirement penalty as listed.
|Crafted item with 1 random mod||+13*|
|Crafted item with 2 random mods||+16*|
|Crafted item with 3 random mods||+19*|
|Crafted item with 4 random mods||+22*|
|Base upgrading from Normal to Exceptional||+5|
|Base upgrading from Exceptional to Elite||+7|
|Secret Recipe 50 (for weapons)||-1|
|Secret Recipe 50 (for others)||-2|
|*Not displayed as the penalty and can't be removed by Secret Recipe 50.|
D-stoning/Gem Melding Caps
These are caps of the mods on an item. If you go over these caps, only the level requirement is added for nothing. You can only go over capped amount on an item if you socket it with Gem/Jewel/Rune that has that mod. For example, you can go over 900% damage on a weapon if you socket it with Wa rune. By the way, the caps are per item, so each socketable can have 900% Enhanced Damage in theory.
You can "Double D-Stone" (Coined by Quelex) some mods on Runewords if you d-stone/gem meld the item before putting sockets in the item. Using Ancient Scroll 16 the item can have the # of sockets you need for the runeword added on while keeping the properties you added on. Certain mods such as Enhanced Damage and Defense can be increased to the limit listed below x 2 (900% x 2 bringing the limit to 1800% enhanced damage and can still have the limit broken if a Wa rune is used in the Runeword). It should be kept in mind reaching the potential for this would consume so many materials it would be extremely difficult to make an item like this legitly. Also, if the Runes are removed from the item, the bonuses applied are lost as well like normal.
Any mod on the item itself counts towards the cap. For example, dwarven circlets have % Extra Gold From Monsters inherently, but it's still not possible to go over the cap by that amount. The only exception is set bonus.
|Item Property||Capped at||Notes|
|Enhanced Damage||900%||On Weapons: Multiplies the base damage.
On Armor: Treated like Str/Dex bonus.
|Enhanced Defense||On Weapons: Treated like the Def bonus from Shout.
On Armor: Multiplies the base defense.
|Minimum Damage||+100||Damage is added to the weapon total damage.|
|Maximum Damage||+50 2h Weapon, Gloves/+200 1h Weapon|
|Damage to Undead/Demons||+500%|
|Bonus to Attack Rating|
|Fire/Lightning/Cold/Poison Skill Damage||400%|
|Damage Reduced by %||200%||capped at 50% on character, but 130% needed to negate Amplify Damage|
|Increased Attack Speed||120%||ES Attack Speed Calculator|
|Faster Cast Rate||FCR breakpoints|
|Faster Hit Recovery||FHR breakpoints|
|Faster Block Rate||FBR breakpoints|
|Piercing Attack||100%||The effect is possibly capped at 95%|
|Chance of Open Wounds|
|Slows Target by %||The effect is capped at 90% for normal monsters and 50% for bosses/PvP|
|Life/Mana After Each Kill||+60|
|Increase Max Life/Mana||+60%||Doesn't affect some bonuses. See the next section|
|% Damage Goes to Mana||150%||The effect ADDS to mana, based on actual damage taken|
|Life/Mana Stolen Per Hit||60%|
|Better Chance of Finding Magic Items||+400%||Diminishing Returns|
|Extra Gold From Monsters||Extra Gold Equipment|
|Increased Chance of Blocking||64%|
|Light Radius||+11||Anything over +5 is useless, unless there's a -Light Radius item|
|(Magic) Damage Reduced by||40|
|Adds xx Fire/Lightning/Cold/Magic Damage||1023|
|Attacker Takes (Lightning) Damage||1023|
|-% Target Defense||-127%||additive with " %enhanced Defense " buffs like Shout
but can't reduce target defense below 0
|Poison Length Reduced by %||235%||Poison Length Reduced is capped at 75% on character,
but +50% Poison Length penalty exists in NM and +100% Poison Length penalty in Hell, so 175% PLR needed to keep 75% PLR in Hell.
|Adds xx Poison Damage over xx seconds||2042 Over 20 seconds (as displayed)||Min Poison Damage per second: 100|
|Max Poison Damage per second: 100|
|Poison Length: 20.48 seconds|
Life, Vit and Max Life bonuses
I don't have the formula handy, but based on how the specific life bonuses are effected it seems the life formula is calculated like this:
(base life and any +life) * ((100 + %max life)/100) + (VIT, VIT/lvl and life/lvl) = total life
base life = your life from stat points assigned into VIT +life = straight +X life bonus, like "+20 life" +%max life = like the item mod, and also includes skills like Wereforms, BO, Oak Sage. VIT = any vitality bonus from items VIT/lvl and life/lvl = well...level based life bonuses.
So basically life and +%max life are combined, then whatever VIT and life/vit per level is slapped on at the end. That means VIT and the other 2 mods are NOT affected by Battle Orders and +%max life mods.
Which mod is better depends on the others. If you have low/no +% max life for instance (such as Sorcs), the "per clvl" mods can usually give a bigger bonus. If you have lots of life and +% max life (Barb with huge Battle Orders), then straight life bonus is better since your BO can turn +20 life into something like +50 life. My preferred choice is to invest stat points heavily into VIT, then get lots and lots of +%max life with +life sprinkled on top if I can spare it.
I would NOT recommend vitality D-stoning, EVER. 4 VIT is hardly anything, I'd go with +%max life instead every time.
(Energy, Energy/lvl and Mana/lvl have the same restriction.)
Achilles' Advantage Set
- Base Items: Gauntlets, Plated Belt and Greaves
- Level Requirement: 20
- Character: Assuming a level 90 Paladin uses the set.
- Though Achilles's set is a cheap low level set, it has a lot of useful mods for melee characters, and is very handy because it frees up the body armor and helm slot. The low level requirement allows a lot of D-Stoning, which makes this set worth considering as the end-game equipment.
- Forging is now removable (most of materials are refunded) while D-Stoning isn't. So Forging is suitable for enhancing temporary items. Even if you are planning to use the target item as your end-game gear, it would be better to apply Forging first, because you may change your mind.
- If you use any oskills, the best Forging is All Skill Forging. But All Skill Forging is very expensive.
- Usually Skill Forging is recommended for any classes, but Stat Forging is cheaper. If you have a limited amount of materials and often die, Stat Forging two items (Maximum Life +36%) can be more helpful than Skill Forging an item (Skill +1).
- Skill Forging of a class doesn't help for mercenaries. All Skill Forging is very good for mercenaries, because it boosts their skill levels, especially the aura and warcries. Stat Forging is a cheap and good alternative for mercenaries until you become rich.
- In this example, we are going to D-Stone Max Life, so we apply Paladin Skill Forging to all three pieces here.
- (2 Anvil Stones, Chipped Diamond) x 3
- +3 To Paladin Skill Levels
- Assuming the character level of the user is 90 and the required level of each piece is 20, you can add +70 level requirement penalty to each piece.
- One D-Stoning adds +4 level requirement to Gloves, Belts and Boots.
- 70÷4=17, remainder 2. So you can apply D-Stoning 17 times per piece. (remainder 2, so you can apply one more D-Stoning at level 92.)
- Maximum Life never hurts. So, first we apply Maximum Life bonus as much as possible.
- [Important] Before you apply D-Stoning, you have to check the cap of the mod. The database says the cap of Maximum Life property is capped at 60%. If you add more than 60% Maximum Life, only the level requirement is added for nothing.
- One D-Stoning adds +4% Maximum Life. You need to apply D-Stoning 15 times to add +60% Maximum Life. (What happens if the cap can't be divided by 4? Assuming the cap of Maximum Life is 50%, you have two options. One is applying D-Stoning 12 times and being satisfied with +48% Maximum Life. The other is applying D-Stoning 13 times to get +50% Maximum Life and giving up +2% Maximum Life.)
- (Tyranium Ore) x 15 x 3
- +180% Maximum Life
- Now each piece still has the room for D-Stoning twice. It would be ok to add Vitality to gain more life. (Vitality doesn't work for mercenaries, tough.) Melee builds may want IAS. Hammerdins may want mana or FCR.
- Here we assume the character needs +10% All Resist or such.
- Which would be better, adding All Resist to each piece, or adding to a single piece?
- If an item has too many mods, D2 can't display the mods, or even worse, it crashes. So you'd better add the same mod to a single item as possible. Also, if you like to reroll the item later, to remove the unwanted D-Stoning, and if the unwanted mod only exists on one item, you have to reroll only one item.
- So here we add All Resist to the boots twice. One D-Stoning adds +4% All Resist, so we get +8% All Resist. This is slightly less than he needs, but he'll be able to apply another D-Stoning when he gains two more levels.
- (Holy Symbol) x 2
- +8% All Resist
- You can apply D-Stoning to the glove and belt as well. Of course you can reserve the room for D-stoning for the future.
- You can apply Gem Melding, too. But Gem Melding adds multiple mods and Set items have many mods, so you must be careful not to add too many mods.
- Like in LoD, there is no reason not to make sockets on the end-game equipments. Please note gloves, belts, boots, rings, amulets and some charms can have socket(s).
- The level requirement penalty is added to the requirement of the item itself or the socketables, whichever is the highest. Since we have applied D-Stoning heavily, we can't socket anything which has higher level requirement than the items themselves (20).
- Unique Jewels are out of the question, because they have high level requirement.
- Normal Gems' level requirement is 14. They wouldn't be bad until you find and craft a good jewel.
- Magic/Rare Jewels can have Forging, and Forging adds no level requirement. So the best bet would be, selectiong 3 good jewels with level requirement 20 or lower from the stash, and Tab Forging them. You can remove the Anvil Stone later and Tab forge another jewel, if you find a better one. Tab Forging doesn't benefit mercenaries, so use 2/3 rune Forging for them (ED, min damage, life leech, resists, etc.).
- In R2G, the range of Tinkering became narrow, so you don't have to worry about your luck seriously. Anything which seems good for your build would be ok. Just like other enhancements, it would be better to add less kinds of mods to an item.
- You can reroll Set Items and Unique Items to cancel Tinkering. But the reroll recipe isn't cheap, the range of Tinkering point is rather narrow now and the variable mods on Unique Items may get worse.