How to Play as Monsters In Diablo II


UPDATE 7/29/2015: I just released my tutorial on how to play as monsters in Diablo 3!

This is my third article on how to play as monsters in various video games. Today I will be teaching you how to play as any demon, undead or beast you can imagine from Diablo II. Most of this tutorial will be basic file extraction and table editing.

Before we get started, look at the below list of the tools needed for this tutorial and gather them. They can all be found over at Phrozen Keep.

Tools Needed

  • D2 Excel
  • MPQ Edit
  • Diablo II: Lord of Destruction patch v 1.13

STEP 1 - Enable Direct Text

First off, if you don't already have a shortcut to Diablo II Lord of Destruction on your desk top, go ahead and create one. To do this right click your Diablo II LoD executable file and select copy, then paste it onto your desk top. Pretty simple, right?

Now right click the newly created shortcut and select properties.

Look for the line that says 'target' and add -direct -txt to the end of it. When you are done it should look like: "C:\Program Files (x86)\Diablo II\Diablo II.exe" -direct -txt

Click OK and close out of that screen. This has enabled your Diablo II: LoD game short cut to run edited files from the Diablo II/data directory instead of the mpq files when they are available. In the long run, this will make modding Diablo II much easier as you won't have to repack all of the files into an mpq every time you edit them.

STEP 2 - Extract The Essential Files

To make monsters playable, you will need to use MPQ Edit to open your PatchD2.mpq file and extract the following files from it to your Diablo II directory. To do this, right click each file and select 'extract with path' and select the Diablo II directory as the extraction folder. This will make sure each file ends up exactly where it needs to be.

Extract the following files:

  • States.txt
  • Skills.txt
  • Monstats.txt

STEP 3 - Create A New Morph State

To do this is quite simple. Use D2Excel to open up States.txt. Go down to line number 177, monsterset, and and left click then right click directly on '177'. Select 'copy selection' from the drop down box that appears.

Once you have that copied, right click at the bottom of the file and select 'Add Row'. This should create a new blank row. Left click the number to the left of the new row and right click it to say 'paste'. This will copy all of the data from monsterset into your new row.

Now change the 'id' number of the new row to '185' or whatever is next consecutively from the id number of the row before it. Change the name of it to 'monstermorph'.

By default, this morph state is set to turn you into a vampire lord. In an upcoming step, we'll come back here to States.txt and I'll show you how to change which monster you morph into. However, first we need to apply this state a skill so you have a way to apply it to your character in-game.

Save States.txt.

STEP 4 - Add MonsterMorph To A Skill

In order to use the new monstermorph state we just created in the game, we first must apply it to one of the skills in the game. For this tutorial, I'll be applying it to the Paladin's 'prayer' skill as it is passive. This means once you reach level 2 as a paladin and choose that passive skill, you will immediately and permanently become your monster of choice.

Open up a new instance of D2Excel (leave your other window open on States.txt for now). Press ctrl + F and type in 'prayer' then hit find. This will go to the line where the Paladin's prayer skill is located. In my copy of Skills.txt, Prayer is on line number 100. Now scroll over to the collumns called 'aurastate' and 'auratargetstate' and replace each of these collums with 'monstermorph' (or whatever you named your new morph state in Step 2).

Save Skills.txt.

STEP 5 - Select Your Monster

Now all you need to do is choose which monster it is that you want to morph into. To do this, use the window of D2Excel that you had Skills.txt open in to open up Monstats.txt. Next to each monster's name you will see an hcidx for that monster. Get the hcidx # of whichever monster you want to play as and write it down.

Now, go back over into States.txt and go down to the bottom of the file where your monstermorph state is. Scroll all the way over to the 'gfxclass' collumn and change whatever number is there to your new monster hcidx number. If you want to shift the color pallete of your monster, go over to the collumn called 'colorpri' and change the value to 100. Then right next to it should be a collumn called 'colorshift'. Change the value of this to whichever color scheme you want to have your monster look like, based off the chart below.

STEP 6 - Monsters With Weapons

Multipart monsters (monsters with randomly selected heads, arms, shoulders, armor or other parts) or monsters that use randomly selected weapons will have issues with this. For example, the Doom Knight won't have a head or arms and the fallen ones won't have any weapons or shields.

However, there is a quick easy fix for this. Re-open MPQ Edit and under d2data.mpq you can find your monster's .dcc files. For example, the fallen one uses all of the .dcc files with the beginning letters of FA. Extract all of these files with the correct path into your Diablo II directory.

Now go use windows explorer to browse under Diablo II / data / global / monsters / <two letter token of your monster, such as FA> / and then whatever part you want to make show up. For this example, we will be making the Fallen One's right hand weapon show up. Each of the subfolders under "FA" have to do with the different parts of the body. For example, "RH" means 'right hand', "TR" means 'torso', "SH" means 'shield' and S1, S2 and S8 are different parts of the body armor.

Go under 'RH' to give your monster a weapon and look at all of the strange .dcc files that are listed under there. Ssd means sword, clb means club and axe obviously means axe. In order to make one of these weapon variants show up on your monster, simply re-name the three digit code 'lit'.

For example, if I want to use the club, I go through and rename EVERY file that has the three digit 'clb' so instead it has 'lit' in it. When you're finished it should look something like the image to the right.

You can do the same thing with every part of the monster. If you want to give the fallen one a shield, rename 'buc' or whatever to 'lit' in each file name. For monsters such as the Doom Knight, you'll need to select a head and right arm and left arm as well.


Once you have done all of the above and saved your work (ALWAYS remember to save your work frequently), you should be able to load up the game. Select a new paladin character and reach level 2. Once you reach level 2, select the 'Prayer' passive skill and you will instantly transform into your monster of choice!

Have fun!

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Comments 19 comments

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D2freak 4 years ago

when i open patchD2.mpq it dosent show states and that other stuff instead it shows files named file0000 neutral blabla and so on what's wrong?

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jaredbangerter 4 years ago from New York City Author

That's strange. Are you sure you're using the mpq viewer from Phrozen Keep called MPQ Edit? Mine is working just fine.

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D2freak 4 years ago

i'm using ladikas mpq edit or something

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D2freak 4 years ago

never mind i had to add a list file but if anything else happens ill tell you

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D2freak 4 years ago

Look it worked i did not have any more prob whit the modding and im here to say thank you very much for this i always wanted to play as claw vipers and shit . so sorry for all the comments :p

jaredbangerter profile image

jaredbangerter 4 years ago from New York City Author

Glad it worked, man! :] No need to apologize for asking questions. That's what I'm here for.

jamgis295 4 years ago

just out of interest would this work with mod monsters

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jaredbangerter 4 years ago from New York City Author

It should, yes. I haven't tried that myself, but just extract the files from said mod's archives.

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penzak94 4 years ago

I am having an ungodly amount of trouble with the second step. No mpq editor seems to work for me. At first i had the same problem as D2freak, but now when i try to open a new file in MPQ editor, nothing shows up. I even have the list files for d2 v1.13. Any help is appreciated -Thank You

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penzak94 4 years ago

I found a program to help with the MPQ editing, and every step was done properly. But the only way i can play it is without the -direct -txt. When i add in Step 1, it gives me an error. Please Help.

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SergeantCupcake 4 years ago

I've followed all the steps, but when I level up and select prayer, I don't turn into the monster I choose. Also, when it says 'monstermorph' does that mean you have to type in the name of the monster you are going to use?

Danilamarsik 3 years ago

somebody can give me a link of downloading? I'm bad understand english, buy i'm want to play monster in diablo 2. help me

Kithraya 3 years ago

My paladin with prayer is still paladin with prayer. It don't work. xC

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ilikegames 3 years ago from Australia

Haha this is actually possible? That's awesome.

Richard 2 years ago

I dunno where to find those files, but if you still have the case you can register the key code on their webstie for a digital download of the game, then you won't need a disc to run it.OR, if you want a new cd PS.. hopefully you've registered the game when you originally installed it, and have an acct with or it may not work.. here's a more direct link

Penmiso 24 months ago

I cannot tell a lie, that really hedlpe.

Penmiso 24 months ago

I cannot tell a lie, that really hedlpe.

Heimdall Seven 6 months ago

Diablo II LOD - Patch 1.14d, Windows 10 64bit

No txt files in Patch_D2.MPQ, so i don't play my Gargantuan Beast. Any ideas ?

Mister Mephisto 5 months ago

Hey Heimdall. There are text files in 1.14d. You just need to get the list file for Patchd2.mpq for Diablo II and load that in there and it will work.

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