For this tournament you are asked to play within a team of three characters, with one avatar of each class (Warrior, Mage, and Rogue) being represented.

Each person should create a new character having ONLY the items/cash/stats a starting (level one) character has.


Access to town services is limited to a single interaction at the start of the game. The gold that the characters were "born" with can be used for purchases, and basic original character gear may be sold to the townsfolk if desired (for instance, the Warrior could sell his club for $5 to buy Rags for the Mage or Rogue). Armor, weapons, potions and scrolls, may be bought subject to the starting cash of the team.

You are not required to buy anything. You MAY shop this one time at the start of the game.

(Note: H&A Special Tourney "Cave-In" Rules will appear in yellow below.)

Each team will be allowed ONE start to the game -- you enter town, you make purchases (or not), you start playing. There will be NO multiple re-creation of game starts in order to fiddle with the items being offered. (If your team gets wiped out and you wish to start a new game, you may do so. This 'new' team would get ONE start in town as per the rules above. Please don't abuse this allowance by doing multiple re-starts.)

In this Tourney, there will be NO storage of items allowed in town. Once you enter the dungeon, you may not return to town for any reason; not for storage, nor to escape foes. (It's as if the Tristram Church entrance "caved-in" behind your group when they first stepped into the dungeon.)

As you venture further into the dungeon, you are also NOT allowed to use the Town Portal spell to return to town -- not to escape foes, not to leave items or pick up items, etc. Again, the town is NO LONGER ACCESSIBLE once you start the game. (You may use the TP spell to illuminate parts of the dungeon. Plus, your party will of course walk through town when continuing the game at future sessions. And if someone lags out and returns, you can cast a TP to get them back onto the level with the rest of the party. Just no townsfolk interaction or item storage!)

There will be NO "paper inventories" allowed. You are only allowed to use what you can carry from level to level and from session to session. If you have an excess of items, then you must decide what you will take onto your next level -- that which is left behind on the previous level -- be it level 1 Church or level 15 Hell -- is no longer retrieveable.

There will be NO "Muling" allowed in this tournament. Carry it or lose it, period.



You must kill all foes, open all chests, coffins and doors, and break all barrels on the level they are found (Leo included). THERE WILL BE NO EXCEPTIONS TO THIS RULE FOR THIS TOURNAMENT. Kill 'em and move on.


For all dungeon levels entered (from Church One through Hell Sixteen) all characters are REQUIRED to enter the next level simultaneously. No "one character pops down and then pops back up to be healed". You can choose the order in which you go, but once the first person moves toward the stairs, so must everyone else, and take them. (Yes, this will add a degree of danger to the game. Be ready to deal with it.) (It's again as if the roof is unstable, and once character(s) take the stairs, that exit closes behind them.)


If a player dies, the only method to bring him back to life is for a living player to use a scroll of resurrection that was either bought at start of a game or found in the dungeon. When there are no living players remaining, the game is over.

Dead players' bodies should remain at their point of death. If a dead player lags out he may rejoin the game in progress but must remain in town. When his death site is cleared of all foes and IF a res scroll is in a living team member's possession, the scroll can be burned and the player may rejoin the team IF the path to the stairs is also clear OR if a TP can be cast directly over the spot where the character's corpse lay. For this reason -- especially if Hiddens abound -- it is a good idea for the surviving teammates to either meet this player at the stairs or try to clear ALL foes in a section of the dungeon (up to closed doors, say).

If a dungeon level is ENTIRELY cleared (foes, chests, barrels) and no res scroll or staff has been found, and the party wishes to continue even though one (or more) party members are dead, then you may do so. Although the dead person(s) body will be considered to have been carried to the next level, those players should wait in town (so as not to affect foe movement AI's on the next level). When the active player(s) find a res spell, you could cast a TP near the stairs up from that active level, have the 'dead' player use that TP, have an living player take off the player friendly option, slay the "dead" player, and then use the res spell on them.

(Note: It's pretty boring for dead character's to wait for that Res spell to turn up. Consider you teammates, and consider starting a new game so that everyone is playing the game.)

HOWEVER, this is a three-man Ironman tournament. If only two or even one character reaches dlevel 16, clears it, and kills Diablo, then you need not post your team's progress -- it simply wasn't a three-man game, now was it? (Congratulations, though -- but try again.)


Ideally, a typical "session" is completed by area: Church, Cats, Caves, or Hell. This makes it very easy to continue the game in a subsequent session. For Real Life purposes this may take too long, so a game may be stopped for continuation at the END of any dungeon level. In this case, ALL barrels & chests must be dealt with before play is discontinued.

To continue, if not at a section end(Church, Cats, etc.), a high level "clearing character" is used to clear a path from the section entrance to the stairs down at the last dungeon level the team cleared. The clearing character may not throw a portal on the 'new' dlvl the team is going to, just on the old one the team last cleared.

The clearing character creates a Town Portal, one or more Ironman characters go down and put up "courtesy portals," using TP scrolls that they have purchased from Adria. (This is one exception to the "no access to townsfolk" rule allowed for this Tourney.)

Upon entering the cleared area, the IM team should check immediately for respawns while the clearing character waits in town. If respawns should be present, the IM Team must immediately leave the level without attacking the respawns. The clearing character returns to the cleared area and dispatches the respawns.

The IM Team may not attack respawns in a previously cleared area since even slight damage done by the team would accrue experience when the clearing character kills the respawns (IF the member were still on the level when the foe is dispatched).

If the team member stays on the level and gains experience, and if each team member does not have a fresh backup of his character that does not reflect that extra experience, the team would need to disqualify itself and restart.


Shrines must be dealt with on the level they are discovered.

They do not HAVE to be used (say, you may not wish to use that Enchanted Shrine at the time you discover it), but once you go to your next level of the dungeon you may not return to use the Shrine at a future time. So a Shrine found on Church Level One MUST be dealt with (used or avoided) before exiting Church Level One, a Cauldron found on Hell 13 MUST be dealt with before leaving Hell 13, etc., etc.

Blood Fountains and Purifying Springs may be used multiple times while you are on the level containing them. Once you leave the level, they are no longer accessible.

Shrines include standard Shrines, Goat Shrines, Fountain of Tears, Blood Fountain, Purifying Springs, Murky Pools, and Cauldrons.


Technology being what it is today, desync is part of the game. This means if foes suddenly appear out of nowhere, or their attack positions change radically, or a door that you thought you closed on your screen is open on your teammate's, it is simple part of the game and must be dealt with.

The same is true of desync-related "friendly fire". Sometimes it will seem on your screen you have a clear line of fire, while on one your teammates' screens you are shooting arrows into his back! Again, it is the nature of the beast and you have to adjust. Remember, play conservatively and you'll minimize the effects of desync.

Finally realize that certain actions actually contribute to desync -- switching weapons, accessing inventory, using certain skills and spells. On the day you are playing, evaluate how bad the desync is. If it is horrendous, consider completing just one dlvl and playing again another day. If you consider its effects as acceptable or a necessary evil, then live/die/deal with your decision.


Lag is also a ever-present aspect of the game. Again, you will have to deal with it or simply choose not to play that day. Sometimes lag "eats" certain drops -- unique items, id scrolls, res scrolls, lag doesn't care! You will just have to accept this as part of the game. It is NOT acceptable to "replace" items eaten by lag by buying them in town, even if you had just dropped it from your inventory or it morphed when you tried to pass it to a teammate! Lag eats it/changes it, it's gone, period.


For the sake of this tournament, we ask that all players involved use no "third party" programs so that all teams have the same advantage/disadvantage in game play in regards to each other. This would include any game Modifications, no matter how innocuous (such as ones that highlight fallen items onscreen) up to and including Mods, Hacks, and Trainers.

Simply play the game (v1.09) that Blizzard created and installed on your computer and Bnet, without other modifications.

That said, it WILL be permissable to use CD emulators, or programs that allow you to run Diablo off your hard drive or without using a disk. You haven't changed the play of the game, just how your computer processes the information. And yes, it should reduce lag spikes some, but a very fast computer system would do that as well.


In a similar vein to that of not using third party programs, we would also ask that players not exploit known bugs. Specifically, try not to exploit the "no hit while moving horizontal" bug, the duping bug (shame on you!), the "mana-shield" bug, the "holes-in-the-walls" bug, the "of Corruption" bug, and others of this ilk that are listed at the Lurker Lounge in their section on Diablo Bugs which can be found at

(Note: some of these bugs mentioned at the Lurker Lounge have been corrected with the release of patches by Blizzard.)

Notice that we are not asking you to avoid entirely such things as walking horizontally -- that would be impossible. We are asking you to avoid exploiting this, such as when Leo's bodyguard turns out to be archers and you as the Warrior want to help your Rogue snipe them, so you think about walking back and forth horizontally drawing the foes' fire. THAT would be bug abuse. Same thing with the Advocates on 16. Please don't. Win the game by playing well, not by exploiting programming errors/oversights.

Taking advantage of enemies movement AIs (i.e., stair-trapping the Butcher, the four-tile-charge rule, holding goat archers at corners) are simply good tactics that you may choose to use.


Technically, a team of Ironman players may disband at any time they wish -- everyone dead, lack of res, lack of motivation, lack of playing time -- you need not play until all or most are dead. Afterwards, if you then wish to either start a new game or locate new teammates to create a new team and new game, you can do that also.


There are two prerequisites that must be fulfilled in order to claim a three-person IM victory for the "cave-in" IM tournament. All standard monsters on 16 must be destroyed (full clear; all Advocates, Blood Knights, and the one Black Knight) and Diablo must be defeated. Having someone hold the game while you kill Diablo with the expectation that you can return afterwards to kill of his bodyguard or remaining foes is NOT acceptible (these are "cave-in" rules, so you must kill all the foes on 16 while you are there that ONE time).

Additionally, we are trying to claim a three-man win here for this tournament. We moderators see this as meaning either:

a.) all three characters are alive and fight Diablo at the finish. If a character (or two, or three) dies in this fight but Diablo is STILL vanquished, then this it is considered a three-person win nonetheless.

or b.) all three characters are alive upon entry to dungeon level 16, and one or more characters dies during the clearing of 16. If that last one (or two) person(s) on the team continues and clears dlevel 16 in its entirety, including Diablo, then this would also be considered a three-man win.

If anything else odd happens (say, two people enter d16, you find a res after a bit, you res your third partner, he dies rather quickly, and then the other two go on to clear the level and defeat Diablo) then simply document whatever happens in your Battle Report, post it, and let your peers read it and decide for themselves.


We plan to have the Tournament officially begin on Monday, June 12 2006 plus or minus 12 hours, depending upon where you live.

We ask all participants to try and complete their games and report on them by Monday, September 4th 2006 again plus or minus 12 hours.

There is NO continuation to Nightmare Difficulty planned for this tournament. If you wish to continue afterwards, you are on your own!


Knowledge is power: these sites will increase your chances at winning at Ironman.

First try this small site (Sabra and Attika's) that has lots of good introductory info:
This has some especially good advice about communicating with your teammates. Note: "Taoni's Takes" gives you the info to change your conversation hotkeys, a must for most Ironman teams.

Then check out the posts at the DSFs Diablo Strategy Forum:
youll see a number of IM victory writeups, which can help you see what was done and at what time. You may encounter similar decision points in your quest.

Next you could go to the Lurker Lounge and click on all the Diablo link at:
and then especially check the links there that says Community and then the DSF Glossary (Da-kotas site); also click on Information and check out the buglist for Diablo v1.09 The former link gives you a few tactics (see the Acid Spitters thread) and the latter more overall information.

Then theres the grand-daddy of all the Ironman sites, called Realmsbeyonddiablo at
The links here are rather haphazardly arranged; be sure to click on as much as you can in the left-hand column. Lots of interesting tactics; lots of math to show you what can and cannot be done at certain character levels. (Note: some small errors also are also here, read Charged Bolt Tactics with a grain of salt.)

Finally, there is the Bible of Diablo, Jarulfs online guide.
This puppy has just about everything you need to know about Diablo, and the Guide's errors are so few and so negligible as to make them ignorable. If knowledge is power, then Jarulfs Guide represents the blueprint to a nuclear power plant!


If you have any questions regarding these rules (Ironman's or the Tourney's), please post threads in THIS forum. Or you can ask for more information regarding a rule. Or you can point out errors/conflicting rules.

The Tournament Moderators will try to post an answer to each question within 72 hours. We ask that you please not ask more than ONE question at a time, so that others may get in their queries too. Thanks!


Hureg and Attika would like to welcome all who have chosen to pick up the guantlet cast before them; your task is dire, your foes are dread. Good fortune all: shoot true, swing straight, cast well. Remember, a strong heart is sometimes as important as a strong arm!

*NOTE: Hureg and Attika would like to thank Nystul for his "locked in" IM rules, which can be accessed at this addy --
-- which formed practically the entirety of our Cave-In Tournament rules. Almost no changes from Nystul's originally suggested rules were made, showing just how tight his idea was. Thanks, Nystul!

*A FINAL NOTE: We also realize that this tournament and its rules are VERY tough and may not be to your liking. However, for this tournament, these rules are to be STRICTLY adhered to. If you wish to make your own tournament and your own rules, please do so. Contact the administrators of this forum -- they'll help you out, and we'd love to play in your tournament, too!