3 hammerdins will have problems in some areas in my opinion (maggot lair, the dungeons in act3 if you ever visit them) - as they dont work too well in small corridors.
In addition, I think; those beasts found in temples in act3 (and maybe wave 2) monsters immune to hammers; but actually those monsters I think can actually kill : -)
Majority is right when they say get a conviction paladin, especially untwinked.
So this for example:
Frozen orb Sorc or Meteor/fireball Sorc - Both having 1 or more points in static field and having teleport.
Foh'er or Conviction Zealer (Might aura + zeal at low levels assuming you will be using re-spec feature) - Both using Conviction as their aura.
Finally a Javelin Amazon, go with a lightning fury build, which means Charged Strike + Lightning Strike as well.
That being said if you want something more challenging/fun...:
Hurricane Druid + Fishymancer + WW barbarian
Smiter + Hammerdin + Necromancer (Necro is really just there for early curses, before the smiter has a chance to gear up and find a life tap proc from gear, the necro would really have control of the smiters life )
Gee... getting to be a lengthly post now haha, well best of luck to what you choose and hopefully it works for you
Assassin - lightning trapper with corpse explosion from death sentry
Necromancer - full skeletons, full mages, lower resist
Paladin - 1 point conviction damage-aura-paladin
Massive damage from a distance (DS), necromancer skeletons are super durable to begin with, and damage buff with kill-all attack.
Progression is simple:
- Assassin levels charged bolt sentry, lightning sentry, and death sentry at a roughly-even rate
- Necromancer beefs up skeleton mastery and numbers from the start, eventually maxes lower resist
- Paladin can probably run a hammerdin, fanatic zealot, or conviction zealot (hey, you gotta do SOMETHING with the tiny amount of melee gear you find!)
A while back, in the latest patch, I had a ton of fun playing a static enchantress and a friend playing a wind druid. The early game went super fast and we ended strong, which leaves me thinking that it's a pretty strong combo, even if the skills aren't immediately as synergistic as something like Lightning Fury and Conviction.
The start, in normal, was mostly casting Static Field a few times until I knocked something down where Frost Nova or Firestorm could chop them down. Do note the druid started off as a fire build which has Fissure, a very powerful spell for Normal. Once SF and Fissure get online, the normal game falls in a fell swoop.
Around level 30, the druid shifts back into Wind Mode™. This doesn't change much, kill speed is still very high. SF should be around 10-15, which almost hits the entire screen at once, then Hurrican pings everything and they die.
My build was originally very similar to the Enchantress variant, but I didn't have very many melee party members, so I respec-shifted into Firewall+Static Field for Hell.
Here's how Hell battles transpired: I open up with teleport into a nice spot somewhere between Grizzly and my Druid friend, Frost Nova, StaticX3-5(watch the health boxes), Firewall rest. Meanwhile, the Druid is casting Grizzly as needed, spamming Tornado and keeping Hurricane online. Two strong damage types, some crowd control and a life buff (Oak Sage) makes this a worthy combo.
Of course, the whole point to the thread is having an effective party of 3 and not 2, but that's not horribly hard to imagine. We've got physical spells, lightning in the form of Static Field and Firewall or Enchant. So, really, anything else that's either another strong type of damage such as Blizzard, Fissure, Lightning Sentry and many others, or a synergistic choice like the Summoning Necromancer or Conviction Zealot.
And that's way too much text for what it's written for.. Oops.
1. Skelliemancer with CE. Get as much of an army as you can, and a Might Merc. Amp. See one guy go down, press CE. Pick up the loot.
2. Static Orb sorceres with Thorns Merc. Spam Static. The Skeletons with Might will do the rest, and the amped foes take double damage from the Thorns.
3. Paladin with Hammers and a fast weapon (Strength will do ) with Zeal and CB. Get him a Holy Frost Merc.
Congratulations, you now have easymode Diablo II, where your enemies are slowed, take double damage, get hit when they strike, are loosing %hits of their HP with every half a second, and in general are doomed... untill one of them dies, then they are doomed, exploded and dead. Untwinked... I'd bet on this team every step of the way.
Of course, there is a million other options that work well too. But I reccomend three different niches, so players dont get into each others way when gathering gear.
The "best" is probably Conviction + BO + Lightning Sorc, but that's not the most fun.
Some things to take into account:
-Overlapping damage types (Physical/Fire/Cold/Lightning/Magic/Poison)
-Distinct gear preferences (e.g. resist gear, +skills, crushing blow, 1H weap 2H weap, FCR, etc) for each character
-Damage multipliers make everyone feel awesome (amplify damage, conviction, fanaticism, etc)
-Survival boosters are awesome powa! Oak or BO are amazing in hardcore, and combining the two is bliss.
-Crowd control is super nifty in hardcore (examples include dim vision, war cry, cloak of shadows, etc)
-Don’t step on each other’s toes! I.e. minionmancer and cold damage; curses and cloak of shadows, shout and thorns, etc)
-Damage output should be relatively similar between characters; your Javazon will be much happier than her bored to tears Avenger and Conc Barb friends! Ideally AoE, single target, and boss-friendly damage types are all represented.
That said, here are a few fun untwinked trio ideas:
2h Berserk + Wind Druid + FW/Static Sorceress
FishyZerkers provide solid single-target damage, buffs, and delicious 20-point war cry to stun enemies great and small. The build’s weakness - large crowds of weak enemies – will fall quickly to diverse fire, physical, and cold damage. Static is available to whittle enemies down to a sliver, and a nice fat grizzly is on call for tanking pesky boss enemies. Tons of life, diverse damage, and spiffy pyrotechnics! Sub a frost maiden for the sorceress if you’re feeling lucky with resist gear; she’ll loooooooove the extra mana from BO and will compensate with a very, very beefy Valkyrie. (As an aside, Wind Druids are amazing members in any party for bringing 2 types of damage, a tank minion, and oak to the table while having no interest in elemental resistance gear. Oh, did I mention that they can be geared for endgame using runes from nightmare Countess? )
2H Avenger + Phoenix Striker + Singer
With BO and War Cry, our Avenger can finally dish out decent damage without keeling over from using a giant mace, axe, or telephone pole. Phoenix striker can forget hoarding AR with lovely conviction, instead focusing on dishing out fire and lightning damage, converting the hearts of enemies, and cloaking enemies near and far in shadows. Our singer gets his choice of caster gear, stunning enemies that would normally mangle his tiny pokey friends from behind an extremely strong shadow master. A claw with +1 death sentry is enough to cause most excellent corpse chains. While not as high in damage as caster-heavy trios, this combo would allow you to steadily progress through the World of Sanctuary with heavily synergistic skills. Each character depends on the others, forming a smashing union.
Tesladin + Corrupted Televangelist (Amp/Revives/CE/Insight/Edge, Google it) + Volcano Druid
The Corrupted Televangelist is one of my favorite builds and a party’s dream partner, providing amp, meditation, thorns, and a huge army of beefy revives to soak up damage. Our Tesladin offers more than flashing blades and arcs of electrical death: he turns crushing blow drops into minced bosses, applies fully synergized zeal against amp damage, and offers a lightning trump card against stone skin PIs and other annoyances. Meanwhile our Volcano druid is another Physical/Elemental champion who can (with the help of our revive army) focus exclusively on maxing out Volcano and Oak. As he calls up magma from the ground and rains brimstone from the sky, you’ll be glad you brought him along. Strong use of amped physical output augmented with a side of elemental destruction, 3 gear-independent builds, usage of some rarer skills, and the ability to tear through hell are some of the benefits you'll get from assembling this team.
Honestly, there are so many awesome parties that you can craft from Diablo 2's diverse options...hopefully someone will try one of these out and enjoy it! And if someone wants to start a play group, sign me up!