So I've found myself once again deep into D2, almost entirely due to the fact that I find magic finding extremely addictive.
For the past couple months I've been running Hell andy, meph, diablo, shenk, eldritch, and pindle with my hammerdin (~400mf). I've had pretty good luck so far, rarely going more than 5-10 runs without finding something worth keeping. However, I was finding myself getting burnt out on hammers (and slow teleporting :P) so I decided to make a low-budget pure blizzard sorc for the sole purpose of meph running.
She has +9 all skills, is over the 105 FCR breakpoint, and has ~300 mf. She can run meph in a minute flat. Fortunately for me, I don't seem to have any issue with temp bans, despite the fact that I make new games every 90 seconds or so.
Anyways, for the first couple days my sorc was having as much luck as my paladin. I was finding decent uniques every 10-20 meph runs, and was very pleased with her speed and efficiency. However, for the past few days I have been getting DISMAL drops. I've probably run meph about 150 times so far this weekend, and all I have to show for it is a ko rune and gore riders -_-
I've read a comprehensive guide on item generation, and realize that drops are rolled the instant the moster dies, but I still can't help but feel like I've burned out mephisto by running him too much too often, and that it's predetermined as soon as I enter a game that he's going to drop nothing but garbage. With my paladin, I was killing a lot of mobs in Chaos Sanctuary, and even though I'm sure it was all in my head, I felt like all those random crap monster drops were sort of "priming" the bosses for good drops. Now that I'm doing nothing but killing meph, it feels like the game is sort of "limiting" his drops in attempt to get me to start killing other monsters instead. (sounds stupid, right?)
So basically, I'm just looking for some consolation here, and for someone to assure me that this isn't the way it's going to be forever. I seriously doubt that the difference between 300 and 400 mf is enough to account for the HUGE discrepancy in drop quality I've been experiencing. (According to that German drop calculator site, 300mf = 136% better chance of finding uniques, while 400mf = 153%, only a difference of 17%) I miss being able to spend a mere 30-60 minutes doing MF runs and having something to show for it, even if it's only one decent unique or set piece. Magic Finding is pretty much my sole reason for playing D2, and I love the anticipation of seeing those items hit the ground, but now I'm getting discouraged. I feel like I've crossed some sort of threshold, or that I'm doing something wrong now, and that my luck has run out. Anyone have an inspiring story that might make me feel better here? :(
It's all in your head. Manually magic finding is so useless at this moment. Hundreds of bots are running 24/7, looking for items/runes. A few days ago I saw Sojs drop from 10 forum gold to 4 forum gold(duping) in a few hours(euscladder). People are offering high runes by the hundreds in some threads(for absurdly high prices). The best thing you can do now is just play the game and kill as many monsters as you can on hell, and pray for a godly rare to drop. Then sell that godly rare for xxxx amount of forum gold and from that moment on, you will be able to play any character you want with good gear. Try finding a +2 sorc +3 fireball +3 fire mastery 20fcr sorc orb, you will be set for life.
I don't use jsp for the reasons Sonolegolas pointed out. It makes the game too easy, and it's ridiculous how people sell 80 Lo runes in a pack etc.
It's true though that boss mfing isn't worth it at this point of the Ladder. I'd do area runs, although with Blizz sorc it can be hard due to immunes. I can't stand Hammerdins myself (hate to aim with the hammers, plus the whole concept is lame imo), but since you have one, that's good for pretty much any area. Shoot for rares and magics and socketables; I plan to run without mf and just hunt for 15/15 armors and e-buggable armors. It's always fast to sell those and time = runes too, although we often forget to think about it (or at least I do).
I play single player, but I feel the same way sometimes. I can go days without finding much sometimes, and it gets old. I will go to the items find thread and look at the stuff people find, and realize that things will drop, it just takes time. I like to mix it up by doing boss runs mixed with area runs.
I feel compelled to point out, however, that I'm not manually MFing in order to "build wealth". I am well aware that by using JSP, I could purchase with <10 fg (about $0.25 USD) more good unique items than I could find MFing manually in a week. I have no interest in becoming "rich" or using godly rares or high runewords. I play on b.net like I would play SP. In fact the only reason I DON'T play SP is because I have a few friends I like to play with. I simply love magic finding for the sheer thrill of finding something decent that I can use to start a new character. You know, the anticipation of getting the last hit on a boss to see those yellow, green, and gold items drop. I get all excited whenever I find something like a shako or vipermagi, regardless of the fact that I could easily buy them for 1fg apiece on jsp. I just like to play with what I find. It feels more fulfilling that way
150 runs is just a drop in the bucket. (Plus Meph can't drop a lot of the better items anyway so once you have most of the standard exceptional and lower elite unique/set gear I don't know why people keep running him.)
I was a Mephisto hunter too and I have found some really nice things from him but you must be patient. Some days I did 50+ Meph runs without finding anything valuable ( I hated those days ). But then on some days I've found Arach, HoZ, Viper and more valuable items. The best thing I remember is when I came back from school I did only one Mephisto run and suddenly he dropped Shako + Gul !!! I was so amazed that I immediatly registered to this forum to post my drop result in the "What was your best drop today?" thread lol