Overview of Lords of Destruction
Lords of Destruction is the expansion pack to the hugely-successful Diablo II pc game and takes the character to the frozen barbarian wastelands surrounding Mount Arreat. Here the character must eventually confront Baal, the last of the three Prime Evils.
After killing Diablo, the character finds himself in Harrogath, the mountain stronghold of the Barbarian Clans. However, the city is being laid siege by the forces of Baal and it is up to the character to stop the siege, journey up the sacred Mount Arreat and eventually vanquish the Lord of Destruction to stop him seizing the Worldstone and with it, ultimate dominion.
Lords of Destruction consists of six quests, and characters should begin the fifth act at around 28th level. As before, most of the quests are not mandatory, but as they occur on your journey to the Arreat Summit, you might as well do them and receive some nice rewards in return.
The quests in Act V of Diablo II are outlined as follows:
Act V Quest One: The Siege of Harrogath
Harrogath, the Barbarian stronghold, is under siege from Baal’s forces and it is up to the character to bring about the end of the siege. The quest is given by Larzuk the Blacksmith as a test of the character’s worth and is triggered automatically upon beginning the fifth act.
The quest is a straightforward, if dangerous, one which involves searching for and killing the siegemaster, Shenk the Overseer in the Bloody Foothills. He can be found towards the far end of the map area which is quite lengthy – if you reach the footbridge to the Frigid Plains without encountering Shenk, then you’ve gone too far. You should destroy the catapults you find on the way, but the siege will end regardless with the death of Shenk.
On the way you’ll come across a range of monsters – beware the suicide minions, who when enraged will charge you with the sole purpose of exploding as close to you as possible and they do deal some considerable damage; use a ranged attack to take them out quickly.
When you reach Shenk, he fights just as any normal Overseer does, although he does deal slightly more damage. He will be surrounded by minions, but these can easily be drawn away from Shenk and picked off relatively easily. Shenk has a fair amount of hit points, but on the whole, characters should have little trouble in besting him. When he dies, the area will come ablaze with catapult fire, which will doesn’t inflict damage but ends the quest. Return to Larzuk for your reward.
Larzuk will offer to add socket to an item and will also discount his prices to you. Larzuk will add sockets to the item of your choosing up to the item’s maximum socket allowance. Like Charsi’s offer of enchantment in Act One, you can delay having the sockets made until you decide. The number of sockets that can be added are:
Normal Items: Added up to the maximum number allowed for that item type.
Magical Items: One or two sockets, randomly decided.
Rare Items, including sets, unique and crafted items: One socket only
No sockets can be added to RuneWord items, items that have already had sockets added or items types that cannot have sockets such as gloves or boots.
Act V Quest Two: Rescue On Mount Arreat
This quest is triggered by entering the Frigid Highlands for the first time and is given to the character by Qual-Kehk, the barbarian leader. It involves finding and rescuing some captured barbarian warriors from within the Frigid Highlands. Altogether, the character must find fifteen barbarians in order to complete the quest.
The barbarians are held in wooden cages, in groups of five – all you need to do to rescue them is to destroy the door to the cage by clicking on it and the barbarians will be set free. You don’t have to escort them back to Harrogath as they’ll vanish into a portal upon your freeing them.
The cages can usually be found towards the centre of the map area, rather than the sides so concentrate your searches through the central areas. Your mini-map won’t show their location until you are close by, and there are a multitude of monsters to fight your way through in order to reach them. While numerous, there’s nothing overtly dangerous about them that you won’t have already faced in getting this far.
You may also come across the occasional wandering barbarian NPC; these can’t be rescued, so don’t waste your time trying. Instead they’ll mash up monsters in the immediate area for you. Once you have succeeded in freeing fifteen barbarians, return to Qual-Kehk for your reward. He will give you some runes and will allow you to hire barbarian mercenaries throughout the remainder of the act.
The runes given to you by Qual-Kehk are Tal, Ral and Ort. You can use them to socket items, but it would be better to place the three into a three-socket shield in the correct order top-to-bottom (Ral, Ort, Tal), whereby you’ll receive an enhanced bonus, along with a Rune Word item called the Ancient’s Pledge. This item provides the character with Resistances against all elements, as well as 50% enhanced defence and 10% of damage taken going to your Mana pool instead.
Act V Quest Three: Prison of Ice
This third quest is activated when the character enters the Arreat Plateau and is given by Malah, the witch woman. It involves finding and rescuing Anya, the young village alchemist who has disappeared.
Anya has in fact been kidnapped and encased in a prison of ice by Nihlathak, one of the NPCs from Harrogath who you can gamble with for items at the beginning of the Act, but vanishes from the town once you complete the first quest.
To find Anya, you must first find the Frozen River area, which is accessed by a cave from the Arreat Plateau. Search the caverns and you’ll find the young alchemist; click on her and she will tell the tale of Nihlathak and to report your findings to Malah. On doing so, Malah will give you a thawing potion which you take back to Anya to use on the block of ice which surrounds her.
Once Anya has been freed, she will return to Harrogath via a town portal; unfortunately, you can’t use the portal yourself and will instead have to make your own way back. On arrival back at Harrogath, talk to both Anya and Malah for a reward. Malah will give you a scroll which will permanently add +10% to all resistances. Anya, meanwhile, will give you rare, class-specific item. You will also be able to gamble with her for potentially good items to use.
One word of advice about this quest; be sure to find the waypoint in the Crystalline Passage or the Frozen Tundra before entering Anya’s portal to Quest Four, as otherwise it’s a mighty long way to travel as the Frozen River area has no waypoint of its own.
Act V Quest Four: Betrayal of Harrogath
The fourth quest is triggered when you rescue Anya in the previous quest and she is also the instigator of the quest.
Essentially, Anya tells you more about Nihlathak and his betrayal of the people of Harrogath to Baal. However, Nihlathak believes he actually saved Harrogath by bargaining for Baal to spare the city in return for giving over the Relic of the Ancients, which allows the bearer to enter into Mount Arreat without challenge from the Ancient guardians. Anya went to stop Nihlathak giving Baal the relic, but was trapped in the ice; you must now stop Nihlathak before he hands over the relic.
Anya will open a red-coloured portal which you must use to get to Nihlathak’s lair – there is no other route and the area is inaccessible from the other map areas. The reward for the quest isn’t great, and the quest itself isn’t mandatory, as you cannot stop Nihlathak from giving over the item – you’re already too late.
If you decide to take the quest, enter Anya’s portal and transport to Nihlathak’s lair. Go through the caves section until you find the way down – you’ll fight a super unique boss monster called Pindleskin en route who drops some reasonable loot – and then descend through the Halls of Anguish, Halls of Pain and finally Halls of Vaught. It is here you’ll find Nihlathak, on a raised dais surrounded by some minions, and it is at this point you find him to be a Necromancer of some power. Beware his corpse explosion, which he will cast once you have killed a few minions.
Nihlathak isn’t all that hard to kill, but he can teleport away from you which slows down the job of bringing him down, but once he has been defeated return to Anya for a reward. She will inscribe your character’s name onto an item of your choice, turning it into a unique item. However, there are no enchantments or enhancements made; merely your character name is added into the item’s name.
Act V Quest Five: Rite of Passage
Before you begin the fifth quest, be sure to stock up on healing and mana potions. This is a mandatory quest in the single player game and is triggered once your character reaches the Ancient’s Way. Qual-Kehk will initiate the quest.
Once you have travelled through the Ancient’s Way to the Arreat Summit you will arrive at a plateau. This is the Arreat Summit and it is here you will face a difficult challenge. The centre of the plateau is raised in a circle and there are pillars surrounding the plateau. There are three statues inside the circle and each bears a name – Madawc the Guardian; Korlic the Protector and Talic the Defender.
Click on the Altar and you will hear a speech which intertwines three different voices who claim to be the spirits of the Nephalem – the Ancient Ones. These are the guardians of Mount Arreat and the Worldstone which lies within. However, without the relic Nithalak stole and gave to Baal there is only one way to go – you have to fight the guardians.
The statues will then come to life; each one is a barbarian and each is clad in glowing red armor. They have barbarian abilities, so expect warcries, barbarian leaps, bashes and whirlwind attacks. Each guardian needs to be defeated, and when killed will return to statue form. But, the hard part is that you cannot leave the plateau during the battle; you must kill each of them without leaving, otherwise they reset as statues and you have to retrigger the Altar to reanimate the statues once more. When you do, each of the guardians will have full hit points and new random modifiers. Even if you kill two and leave, when you return you will have to face all three again.
Once you have bested all three guardians, you will receive a ton of experience points depending on the level of the game you are playing.
Act V Quests: Eve of Destruction
When you defeat the guardians, you will trigger the sixth – and final – quest of the Act. It is given by Qual-Kehk or automatically once you reach the Throne of Destruction level of the final dungeon.
There is nothing specific your character must do other than to kill Baal and end the game. Use the stairs found on the Arreat Plateau to enter Mount Arreat and the Worldstone Keep. Descend down to the third level of the Keep and through the Throne of Destruction level.
As you make your way through, Baal will laugh at you occasionally, which can be a little unnerving. You’ll find him in a room at the end of the Throne of Destruction, but as you might expect killing him isn’t going to be straightforward! Baal sits on a throne in the final room, but between you and him are several randomly generated monsters which you must kill. When you do so, Baal will then throw a glowing ball of lightning which will land somewhere on the floor and explode. From the explosion will come another bunch of monsters and a SuperUnique boss.
Once you have killed this wave, Baal will launch another glowing orb from which another wave of minions will appear and attack. This will happen five times in total; each time will have different and more powerful monsters to fight. The minions and bosses are as follows:
- -Warped Shamans led by Colenzo the Annihilator
- -Death Mages and Unravelers led by Achmel the Cursed
- -Council Members led by Bartuc the Bloody
- -Venom Lords led by Ventar the Unholy
- -Minions of Destruction led by Lister the Tormentor
When you have defeated them all, Baal will flee into a portal behind his throne. Use the opportunity to return to town and replenish your healing and mana potions before following him through. You will enter the Worldstone Chamber and into a final showdown with Baal.
Baal is a strong opponent with a vicious melee attack and the ability to cast powerful spells, including the ability to replicate himself, although the clone has fewer hitpoints. He can also teleport away from you.
Once you finally defeat him, you’ll be greeted by Tyrael who will open a portal which you click on to finish the game and see the end cinematic trailer where the archangel destroys the Worldstone. You’ll also receive a title depending on the level of the game you have played – Slayer, Champion or Patriarch/Matriarch. If playing in Hardcore, the titles bestowed are Destroyer, Conqueror and Guardian.
Congratulations! You’ve completed the Diablo II expansion pack, Lords of Destruction. Now you can sit back and wait for Diablo III or go back to the start and do it all again on a higher difficulty!
This post is part of the series: Diablo 2 Quest Guides
- Diablo 2 Special Quests – How to Access Special Quests in Diablo II
- Diablo II Quests Guide: Act One Quests in the Diablo II PC Game
- Diablo II: Lord of Destruction Guide: Act I Townsfolk
- Act Two Quest Guide for Diablo II – Lut Golein Quests in Diablo II
- Guide to Act III Quests in Diablo 2 – The City of Kurast – Diablo II Quests
- Act IV Quests Guide for Diablo II – Guide to Act IV Quests in Diablo 2 – Hell Quests
- Lord of Destruction Quests – Diablo II Quest Guide for Act V – Mount Arreat & Harrogath