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If you don't already have any of the artifacts required for a Horadric Staff, then a Horadric Scroll drops from the chest in Radament's Lair in the sewers beneath Lut Gholein, triggering this second quest.

DII Icon The Horadric Staff.png The Horadric Staff
Show the scroll to Cain in Lut Gholein.

Return to the surface to talk to Cain:

Deckard Cain
Ahh... The lost Horadric Scroll! What a fortunate turn of events...

As the last living Horadrim, I alone have knowledge of its meaning. Now, to read the Horadric runes it bears. Hmmm...

The Horadric Mages, after binding Baal within Tal Rasha, magically sealed off his Burial Chamber from the mortal realm. Those same Mages also crafted fearsome Horadric Staves and imbued them with the special power to open the Chamber's hidden door.

After nearly losing one to the thievery of a rogue sorcerer, they divided all the Horadric Staves into two parts - wooden shaft and metal headpiece - hiding them separately to safeguard them.

The Horadrim foresaw our current plight and designed the hiding places to reveal themselves to worthy heroes like you.

Collect both parts of a Horadric Staff and unite them using a Horadric Cube. Then, you may enter Tal Rasha's Burial Chamber.

Alternatively, if you've already acquired a Horadric Cube (as should always be the case in Nightmare and Hell), Staff of Kings or Amulet of the Viper, then this quest is activated when you do so:

DII Icon The Horadric Staff.png The Horadric Staff
Take the artifacts to Cain in Lut Gholein.

Once you've talked to Cain about the Horadric Scroll or at least one of the artifacts, you receive your instructions:

DII Icon The Horadric Staff.png The Horadric Staff
Search the Halls of the Dead under the Dry Hills for the Cube. Search the Maggot Lair under the Far Oasis for the Shaft. Search the Claw Viper Temple for the Headpiece.

Rocky Waste[edit]

The exit to the Rocky Waste is in the north corner of Lut Gholein, in either the northwest or northeast wall. It's randomly populated by three of the following five monster types, all animal: Carrion Birds, Dung Soldiers, Huntresses, Sand Leapers and Slingers.

The entrance to the Dry Hills is somewhere on the perimeter, but not that shared with Lut Gholein: it's best to go around the perimeter until you find it, although if you explore the interior you can find the entrance to the Stony Tomb.

Stony Tomb Level 1[edit]

This optional area is randomly populated by electric Burning Dead Mages, Dung Soldiers and Horrors. If you explore it then you should find the stairs down to a second level.

Stony Tomb Level 2[edit]

The second level is similarly populated to the first. If you explore it then you should find a chest guarded by a non-random Unique monster, in addition to those randomly spawned, and you can encounter Creeping Feature elsewhere.

Creeping Feature[edit]

Super Unique Decayed (Extra Strong Cold Enchanted)

Dry Hills[edit]

The Dry Hills are randomly populated by three of the following four monster types: Cave Leapers, Saber Cats, Spear Cats and Undead Scavengers. In Nightmare and Hell, you should already have a Horadric Cube and you can simply travel around the perimeter until you find the entrance to the Far Oasis. Otherwise, you'll need to explore the area until you find the entrance to the Halls of the Dead, and ideally the waypoint.

Halls of the Dead Level 1[edit]

The first level is randomly populated by three of the following five monsters: Decayed, Desert Wings, Hollow Ones (2) with Returned, and Spear Cats (this means Hollow Ones can be picked twice, for 90% chance of spawning, while the others each have 'only' 60% chance of spawning). There can also be Fire Towers and Mummy Sarcophagi, which can spawn Dried Corpses.

The most direct route to the second level is most likely to be found by traveling left after entry.

Halls of the Dead Level 2[edit]

The second level is similarly populated to the first. The most direct route to the third level is also most likely to be found by traveling left after entry: before descending, you can continue to do so for the most direct route to the waypoint, or travel right after entry to find the waypoint before the entrance to the third level.

Halls of the Dead Level 3[edit]

The third level is similarly populated to the first two. The most direct route to the room containing the chest in which the Horadric Cube can be found is once again most likely to be found by traveling left after entry: However, it is not unguarded...

Bloodwitch the Wild[edit]

Super Unique Saber Cat (Extra Strong Cursed)

When you realize you've found the room containing the chest in which the Horadric Cube can be found, do not enter, or retreat back outside as soon as you can: there are no other exits to the room and, apart from any other randomly spawned monsters, the room also contains Bloodwitch the Wild and her minions, fast and aggressive melee attackers. Extra Strong and Cursed is already bad, and in Nightmare and Hell it's more likely that Aura Enchanted with Might or Fanaticism will be selected, which is a truly nightmarish (or hellish) combination: her minions will also always be physically stronger, and being cursed with Amplify Damage makes you much more susceptible to physical damage from any source.

You can try to just run, charge, leap or teleport in, open the chest to retrieve the Horadric Cube and then make your escape, but if you're unlucky then the situation can deteriorate very rapidly: it's best to use the door as a choke point to limit the numbers that can attack you at any one time, and focus on Bloodwitch the Wild as soon as possible: if you're cursed before she's killed, you may even want to create a portal to return to town to be cured by Atma or Fara before continuing.

Far Oasis[edit]

Beyond the Dry Hills, the Far Oasis is randomly populated by three of the following five monster types: Black Raptor Nests (which spawn Black Raptors), Death Beetles, Itchies, Sand Maggots (which spawn Sand Maggot Eggs, which in turn spawn Sand Maggot Young) and Undead Scavengers. There can also be Fire Towers.

Once again, the exit to the next area, the Lost City, is on the perimeter, but you need to explore this area more thoroughly to find the entrance to the Maggot Lair, and ideally the waypoint as well: if you find the former before the latter, create a portal at the entrance before exploring further (although if you find the entrance to the Lost City first, you can explore that area for another waypoint).

Beetleburst[edit]

Super Unique Death Beetle (Magic Resistant)

You may encounter this Scarab and its minions as you explore the Far Oasis.

Maggot Lair Level 1[edit]

The first level is randomly populated by three of the following five monster types, all animal: Black Locusts, Death Beetles, Rock Worms (which spawn Rock Worm Eggs, which in turn spawn Rock Worm Young), Sand Maggots (which spawn Sand Maggot Eggs, which in turn spawn Sand Maggot Young) and Scarabs.

The most direct route to the entrance to the second level is most likely to be found by traveling right after entry. However, the lair is a series of small chambers interlinked by tunnels so narrow that they can normally only be traveled in single file: this is good to great news for those who use skills with piercing missiles, or single-target attackers who are normally more easily overwhelmed, but bad news for others. Blessed Hammer is normally one of the most powerful Paladin skills, but in the tunnels it's reduced to a close-range attack against single targets, and a summoner like a Necromancer may find it much quicker and easier to unsummon Necroskeletons and mages and rely on a golem and mercenary, supported by Corpse Explosion and possibly other direct damage spells like Bone Spear or Poison Nova.

Maggot Lair Level 2[edit]

The second level is similarly populated to the first, and once again the most direct route to the entrance to the next level is most likely to be found by traveling right after entry.

Maggot Lair Level 3[edit]

The third level is similarly populated to the first two, but you always enter a chamber on the southwest side. The chamber containing the chest in which the Staff of Kings can be found is always at the northeast end of a tunnel, on the northeast side of the level.

Coldworm the Burrower[edit]

Super Unique Sand Maggot Queen (Cold Enchanted Magic Resistant

The chamber with the chest containing the Staff of Kings in its west corner also has Coldworm the Burrower in its midst, who's Immune to Cold, even in Normal, and cannot be poisoned or cursed. Although she cannot move or attack you directly, she spawns Sand Maggots (which in turn spawn Sand Maggot Eggs, which in turn spawn Sand Maggot Young): so if you don't find the chamber quickly, aside from any randomly spawned monsters it can be crawling with maggots, making it difficult (but not necessarily dangerous) to get to the chest.

You don't have to kill her, and doing so may not be recommended: she explodes in a cold nova and a shower of poison.

Artifacts[edit]

Once you've found one of the artifacts required to make a Horadric Staff and returned to town to talk to Deckard Cain about it, you'll be instructed where to search for the remainder:

DII Icon The Horadric Staff.png The Horadric Staff
Search the Halls of the Dead under the Dry Hills for the Cube. Search the Maggot Lair under the Far Oasis for the Shaft. Search the Claw Viper Temple for the Headpiece.

You'll receive a reminder of this whenever you find the next artifact, until you have all three.

Horadric Cube[edit]

The Horadric Cube can be found in the chest guarded by Bloodwitch the Wild on the third level of the Halls of the Dead under the Dry Hills, beyond the Rocky Waste outside Lut Gholein: it requires 2x2 inventory space, but right click to open and it has 4x3 inventory space of its own. If you talk to Deckard Cain after acquiring it:

Deckard Cain
You have quite a treasure there in that Horadric Cube. According to Horadric lore, the Cube can restore a Horadric Staff.

To do it - use the Cube as you would a scroll. When the Cube opens, place both pieces of the Staff into it and use the Cube's transmute power.

You'll be pleased to know that the Cube has other alchemical uses as well...

Six gems plus one sword transmute into a socketed long sword.

You may also transmute two quivers of crossbow bolts into one quiver of arrows, while two quivers of arrows yield one quiver of bolts.

I must leave it to you to discover other formulae.

Once you have one, unlike the other artifacts it can be used in any difficulty so you don't need to find it again. Ignore the erroneous formula for a socketed long sword and consult the Horadric Cube page for all other formulae.

Staff of Kings[edit]

The Staff of Kings can be found in the chest 'guarded' by Coldworm the Burrower on the third level of the Maggot Lair under the Far Oasis, beyond the Dry Hills.

Staff of Kings
  • Two-Hand Damage: 10 to 15
  • Durability: 45
  • Required Strength: 25
  • Staff Class – Speed 0
  • Range adder 2
  • 50% Increased Attack Speed
  • All Resistances +10
  • +50% Damage to Undead

It requires 3x1 inventory space. If you talk to Deckard Cain after acquiring it:

Deckard Cain
The Staff of Kings! You astound me, my friend. You have discovered the shaft portion of a Horadric Staff.

I trust you know how to use a Horadric Cube to unite the shaft with its headpiece.

To acquire this headpiece, you'll need to complete the third quest...

Amulet of the Viper[edit]

The Amulet of the Viper drops from the Tainted Sun Altar guarded by Fangskin on the second level of the Claw Viper Temple beneath the Valley of Snakes, beyond the Lost City and Far Oasis.

Amulet of the Viper
  • +10 Life
  • +10 Mana
  • Poison Resist +25%

It requires one inventory space. If you talk to Deckard Cain after acquiring it:

Deckard Cain
The Viper Amulet you bear is actually the headpiece of a Horadric Staff!

Yes… You have an uncanny knack for finding rare and valuable artifacts. Of course, you'll have to use a Horadric Cube to combine the headpiece with the shaft.

Once you have all three artifacts, you can use them to make a Horadric Staff.

Horadric Staff[edit]

DII Icon The Horadric Staff.png The Horadric Staff
Use the Horadric Cube to restore the Staff.

Right click to open the Horadric Cube, place the Staff of Kings and Amulet of the Viper inside and remove any other items, then left click the Transmute button.

Horadric Staff
  • Two-Hand Damage: 12 to 20
  • Durability: 50
  • Required Strength: 30
  • Staff Class – Speed 0
  • Range adder 2
  • 50% Increased Attack Speed
  • +10 Life
  • +10 Mana
  • Cold Resist +10%
  • Lightning Resist +10%
  • Fire Resist +10%
  • Poison Resist +35%
  • 50% Damage to Undead

It requires 4x1 inventory space. If you talk to Deckard Cain after making it:

Deckard Cain
Excellent! You have a Horadric Staff.

Carry it with you into Tal Rasha’s Tomb. Find within the Tomb the chamber whose floor is inset with the Circle of Seven Symbols.

Place the Staff into the receptacle you find there. That will open the secret passage into Tal Rasha's Burial Chamber.

But, be prepared for a fight - you'll likely have to kill Tal Rasha to destroy Baal.
DII Icon The Horadric Staff.png The Horadric Staff
Take the Staff into Tal Rasha's Tomb.

You'll need to find and explore the Arcane Sanctuary beneath the palace, reading Horazon's Journal to discover the location of the True Tomb of Tal Rasha in the Canyon of Magi beyond, before you can complete this quest by placing the Horadric Staff in the Orifice you'll find in the tomb.

DII Icon The Horadric Staff.png The Horadric Staff
Quest completed.
DII Icon The Horadric Staff.png The Horadric Staff
You completed this quest in a previous game.