Explaining Act 1-5 Mercs and which Gear you can use

Mercenaries, also known as hirelings, provide aid to players throughout gameplay. They follow the player around within a specific radius and help in fighting and killing monsters. Mercenaries are also vulnerable to getting attacked and killed. In the Classic version of Diablo 2, mercenaries could not go beyond the act they were hired in.

Diablo 2 Mercenaries
Art by Kekse0719

Several changes were made in the Expansion sequel with mercenaries and players. Firstly, mercenaries can accompany players throughout all acts and difficulties. They can also level up and get enhanced stats and items to further help the players throughout gameplay.

Mercenary Equipment

Almost all hirelings can assist the player by equipping helms and armor. Other arms can be equipped depending on the type of hireling. The Barbarian is the only hireling who can equip class-specific items such as Barbarian Helms and armor because of Barbarian class requirements. Other mercenaries cannot be equipped with rings, amulets, boots, gloves or other class-specific items.

Mercenary Healing

You can heal a hireling by selecting or dragging the health potion onto your hireling’s visual rendering present in the upper-left corner. You can also do this by simply pressing shift and right click the potion to instantly heal a hireling. Additionally, you can also talk to a healer in the town for healing.

Act 1 Merc

Once a player completes the Sisters’ Burial grounds quest, he is able to hire Rogue Mercenaries from Kashya. They are from the Rogue Encampment and pertain to the Sisterhood of the Sightless Eye.

  • Skills: Makes use of the Amazon skill Inner sight and can blast either Fire Arrows or Ice Arrows
  • Equipment: Armor, Helms and Bows. A player cannot gear a Rogue with crossbows or Amazon weapons.

Act 2 Merc

These can be called Desert Mercenaries. Their origin is the city of Lut Gholein and are guardians of their town. A player can hire them from their captain, Greiz.

  • Skills: Makes use of Amazon skill Jab and Auras to boost the battlefield. The type of Auras depend on the difficulty level a desert mercenary is hired in. So if a defense merc is hired in nightmare, he will use holy freeze aura in hell and normal mode.
  • Equipment: Armor, Helms, Spears, Polearms (double-handed), Swords (single-handed) and Javelins (won’t throw)

Normal/ Hell Auras

  • Combat: Prayer
  • Offensive: Blessed Aim
  • Defensive: Defiance

Nightmare Auras

  • Combat: Thorns
  • Offensive: Might
  • Defensive: Holy Freeze

Act 3 Merc

Act 3 or Iron Wolf Mercanary. They are spellcasters and hail from Kurast where they guardians of Kurast Docks. A player can hire them from Asheara.

  • Abilities: Able to cast different types of spells. They can attack if they are geared with a sword but do so sparingly. Although they are geared with a shield, they are unable to block.
  • Equipment: Armor, Helms, Single-handed swords and shields


Lightning Mercenary Spells

  • Lightning
  • Charged Bolt

Fire Mercenary Spells

  • Fireball
  • Inferno

Cold Mercenary Spells

  • Ice blast
  • Frozen Armor
  • Glacial Spike

Act 4 + 5 Mercs

Act 4: Angel

Tyrael offers resurrection services here as there are no hirelings in this act.

Act 5: Barbarian

Players can hire Barbarian mercenaries after completing the Rescue on Mount Arreat Quest. They come from Harrogath and can be hired from Qual-Kehk.

  • Skills: Makes use of Bash and Stun.
  • Equipment: Armor, Helms and single- handed swords. Is not able to hold two weapons, one in each hand. Players can gear Barbarian mercenaries with class-specific Barbarian helms.


Mercenaries FAQ

At which point can a player hire a mercenary?

A player can hire a mercenary once the second quest in Act 1 is completed, or when the player reaches level 8.

Do mercenaries follow players everywhere?

Yes, Mercenaries can follow a player through portals and waypoints.

What can a player do if a mercenary gets stuck?

In these cases, a player may use a waypoint or town portal. They can also enter/ leave a dungeon/level to quickly move the mercenary back to their side.

Does a player get experience when a mercenary kills a monster?

Yes, they do.

Can mercenaries reduce your experience?

No, you do not get any less experience for using a mercenary.

Why do mercenaries say, “I feel much stronger now”?

Once you level up, the Mercanary will say “I feel much stronger now”. This means that the mercenary has also leveled up. They heal fully and their ‘% to hit’ improves (since the hireable level is a factor). For the player, this means that they should try to keep a mercenary for as long as possible since they can also level up.

Can a player dismiss a mercenary?

Players cannot dismiss mercenaries. In order to get rid of a mercenary, a player would require the assistance of another player to kill them. Players can also lead their mercenaries into danger so they can get killed on purpose.