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Once you've finished Diablo II you are able to play hardcore mode.

So far, I am aware of these elements when playing hardcore:

  • When you die, your character is permanently killed and unplayable.
  • Your name appears in red on
  • Your character will wear a robe once killed and you can still participate in conversations etc.

In games with similar modes, you will be rewarded whilst playing. For example:

  • Better items drop far more frequently.
  • Access to a couple more side-quests.
  • Ability to play against special boss's (for example Uber Diablo/Baal/Mephisto if you play hell mode +
  • A small selection of new skills / spells.
  • etc

Are there any perks when playing hardcore such as an increased chance of finding uniques and set items? Or is the sole benefit bragging rights?

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up vote 15 down vote accepted


2.3 Hardcore vs Softcore…what's the difference?

When it comes down to it, the difference is not that great. Apart from the one life aspect of HC, the game is exactly the same; the same items, same skills, same levels, same monsters. However, the spectre of your mortality looming in the background has an enormous effect on the way you build and play your characters, and this will be explained in the section below, entitled Gameplay in Hardcore.

4.4 Are the item drops better in Hardcore than Softcore?

No. Monsters drop exactly the same, regardless of whether you play hardcore or softcore. Contrary to urban legend, hardcore does not reward players with better items.

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Disappointing.. – Marty Jan 16 '12 at 4:43
@MartyWallace The benefit is not really bragging rights, but the thrill. Knowing that your character only has one life, you need to use completely different character builds and strategies based on survival and those "close calls" are what the game is about. It is a much more intense experience. – Resorath Jan 16 '12 at 6:05
@Resorath I have to agree - still going to be sticking to hardcore. – Marty Jan 16 '12 at 6:39

Nothing within the game changes. Although the player receives experience of the game, and learns to play better (:

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