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This is the N-th time I've tried to beat Diablo 2, and it's happening all over again.

I'm a Paladin at lvl 28, ripped through the game without much difficulty until Chaos Sanctuary. As soon as I release the 5th seal there, a bunch of lightning-fast Venom Lords spawn and kill me with one-two hits (an my merc along with me). I opened a portal beforehand so I just grabbed a few spare items from my chest and when I returned to just loot my corpse real quick, portal back and re-supply, I was killed again - in one hit.

Now, why does this happen and what am I supposed to do now (portal gone, butt-naked and no decent stuff in pandemonium fortress' shops)?

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  • Sounds like you're not high enough level. Best bet: get somebody to join your game and kill everything.
    – Frank
    Oct 22 '12 at 23:13
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    Exiting the game and recreating it will result in your corpse being returned to town. Generally if you get stuck in an area then you can either go back and farm more enemies to get more levels and possibly some items, or join up with a friend who can kill everything for you so you can move onto the next difficulty.
    – kalina
    Oct 22 '12 at 23:29
  • If I recall correctly, that doesn't work anymore after you are killed a second time, however.
    – oKtosiTe
    Oct 23 '12 at 15:10
  • As you are playing in softcore mode: The stat Vitality, which increases your life, is often neglected. It might be helpful to raise your vitality/life a bit, so you could avoid the one-hit deaths. Oct 24 '12 at 12:07
  • Your level is not low for that area but your equipment must be bad. Do some Mephisto runs and hopefully you can gear up fairly fast
    – Huangism
    Aug 1 '19 at 18:17
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The short answer is you were too low level / not geared up enough for the Chaos Sanctuary.

As pixel noted in the comment, you can leave your game and re-enter to have your most recent (or highest valued) corpse returned to you in town. It's best not to wait until you have a lot of corpses, if you need to do it, just do it.

Nextly, you need to go back and run act 3/4 again and find some better gear before attempting the Sanctuary. It's quite common in the Diablo franchise that you don't find the gear you need until after it's useless to you but it's a cross we have to bear. A few levels will help.

Beyond that you'd have to expand your question with your current skill tree, gear and stats for us to give you much more specific advice.

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    Thanks; I'm following more detailed guides on leveling up for my class. I just thought I was doing something wrong, following the game's normal course and still getting my ass handed to me at this precise point. I wouldn't have guessed this could just happend and that redoing previous acts was an established practice. Oct 23 '12 at 19:36
  • Just one more question: How do I run act 3 again? There doesn't seem to be a way to go back from Pandemonium Fortress... Oct 24 '12 at 18:22
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    @neuviemeporte There is a waypoint "south" of Tyrael that you can use to travel between acts (the acts are at the top, the checkpoints down the list)
    – Tharius
    Oct 24 '12 at 18:41
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    @Stephen Good one, I used to think you had to have a character like Warriv in your camp to be able to travel back and forth, didn't notice waypoints could also be used to travel between acts. :) Oct 25 '12 at 13:36
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Two comments:

  1. If you seriously get 1-hit death by the venom lords then your equipment is too low, your life is too low, your level is too low, and your fire resist is too low. Even if you manage to kill them eventually by chipping away at them, you will have a tough time with Diablo.
  2. Demon lords have 70% fire resist in Normal. So if you are using Holy Fire, then you need to use a different attack.
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To reduce the chances of this in the future, before you break either of the two seals on the lower-right, have a town portal open right next to the seal.

As soon as you break the seal, if you see venom lords, go through the portal. Then come back by the waypoint and run all the way to the Chaos Sanctuary again. (This will be quick because you've already killed all the monsters on the way.)

You'll still have to fight the venom lords, but you'll at least have a lot more space to do it in.

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People just talk about that you need to magic find "things" but thats a really weird and unspecific answer.

If we talking about normal, you can kill infestor even with a level 15 melee char. Infestor and his group deal a lot of fire damage. So if you are struggling specifically against him, I would say that your fire res is quite low. An easy and strong solution is a 2 socketed helm with 2 ral runes. You can get them very quickly by running normal countess (Act 1 Blackmarsh). 2 ral runes will give you 60% fire res. There are ofc other options like buying a 3 socketed shield from Fara in Act 2 and socket it with rubys or diamonds.

The second problem might be that your life pool is way to low. If you put a lot of attribute points into energy and dexterity, you don't have enough life. The easiest solution for new players is just to have enough str and dex for your gear and the rest into vita.

Third solution (used in almost every speedrun of diablo 2). Just don't be a melee fighter. In general as a meele fighter you can't really kite (hit and run). You have to be strong defensively and offensively. That means that you need pretty good items. On the other way with a proper hit and run technique as a hammerdin, you can even clear cs with 0%/0%/0%/0% res quite easily. The only option of "abuse" you have is to do choke point hitting. Make sure that your character does get surround from 360°. Stand in next to a wall and reduce the angles to 180°. Stand in a corner and reduce it to 90°. Sometimes you can find a good spot where only 1 enemey can hit you.

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You should level your character and focus on increasing your vitality, so you are able to survive and kill the venom lords.

Farming Mephisto at the end of Act 3 is a good place to gain experience quickly.

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