Some questions about ethereal, cube recipes (upgrade uniques, sockets, crafting) + apprechiation for D2:R

Hello guys,

at first I have to say, that I really love D2:R. It really feels like back in the good old days, just with better graphics and fresh from start. As I'm a family father now and don't have that much time to play the game in general like 20 years ago, it feels especially good if I can play. Also you don't have the feeling to acchieve like everything right from the start and I actually play the game, didn't let getting me rushed, just play the game act by act, quest by quest.

So all in all a really good job and it's really fun to be part of D2 again. Now the grind begins lol.

So… I just have some questions regarding ethereal gear and about some cube recipes.

(1) Ethereal items in general

As I know, ethereal items can not be repaired. Not from the vendor and no from cube recipe.

Also what it so special about the ethereal version of an item? I read it always comes with max rolls, is that right? Are these max rolls for all the substats like + skills, resists, FCR, recovery rate etc or it just for the base stats like defense and damage?

If that's so, for example are all ethereal giant treshers the same damage wise, or where are the differences here? When does it have max damage etc?

As I read some guides for my Blizzard Sorc, the end game item to go for it the occulus as ethereal with an ist rune for the MF%. My question for this is simple: Shouldn't I go for a Zod rune into this? I mean if the durability is 0, the item is basically ready for selling.

OR is this just relevant if you are sure that you don't die and the item won't lose durability (does it lose durability from dying or from hitting enemies?)

(2) Ethereal Items on Mercs

Items equipped on mercs won't lose durability, right? So going for ethereal items for merc should be the best. Please see text and questions earlier, how to get the maximum stats for ethereal merc items?

(3) adding sockets to normal / ethereal items / Unique items?

It it only possible to add sockets on normal / ethereal items with the cube?

If I add sockets to an item, can I reuse the item for another try? Let's say I didn't get 4 sockets in a polearm. can I use the now already 3-socketed weapon again to maybe get 4 socket's next time or do I have to find another unsocketed normal/ethereal version?

Also is it possible to add socket's to unique items, how?

I saw adding Jewels into the items, what Jewels should I look out for?

(4) Is there a list of normal / ethereal Items to always pick up for recipes or possible rune words?

(5) Upgrading Uniques:

I read some things about it but I just don't get where this is actually really useful or let's say where you should definitely do it and for what items?!

Can you guys give me a briefe description for what items / wherere you used it and what to look out for if you want to upgrade uniques?

example: Can I make a Shaco even better?

(6) Are there other instances where upgrading normal / rare items make sense? (for example for jewelery)?

(7) Crafting amu/ring:

What are the best recipes for this, and at what state of the game does it make sense to start crafting things and what things are the most important to go for?

(8)E bugged:

I read something about this. Is this still relevant or "implemented"? It adds 50% more defense on an ethereal item if u use the recipe for adding random sockets, right? Is this actually bug or on purpose?

A lot of questions, I hope you guys can help me out with my questions and lighten up my limited knowledge lol.

Thanks so much in advance.

Best regards


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