Returned Albrecht - by LemmingofGlory
Storyline - Diablo had been vanquished by a great Hero. The twisted form of the Lord of Terror collapsed into itself allowing the Hero to see the host body. The hero pitied the host as he proceeded to remove the soulstone from the skull. The skull of Albrecht.
Albrecht at this time was not dead, and he watched the Hero extract the soulstone from his skull. The young prince exterted his last bit of energy and tried to warn the Hero about the power of the soulstone, but he was too weak and all that was heard was a groan. Albrecht turned away so not to watch the Hero ram the soulstone into his own skull.
The body of the young prince was left on the floor of Hell after the Hero of Tristram had beaten Diablo into submission and taken the soulstone. The Hero did not think to exorcise the corpse of Terror's host. This was a grievous error for he failed to realize the extent Diablo's twisted power and that it had left the corpse of Albrecht corrupted. Not long after the Hero had exited Hell, Albrecht's flesh and bodily organs melted away. The skeleton of Albrecht lay in wait. Albrecht knew that any who tried to contain Diablo would fail... he knew that the Hero's life was already wasted.
It was when the Hero left to the East and Diablo's power had begun to grow and taint the world again that Albrecht rose from his long wait. Albrecht had learned much from brushing with a Prime Evil, some things mortals should never have to learn. Albrecht learned that he, Terror's former host, could not properly die... or at least not while Diablo still had power in the mortal world. He also learned that he was immortal as long as his father's curse remained unbroken. But that was not all that Albrecht learned.
Albrecht had sensed fear in the Lord of Terror. Fear that he'd be sent back to Hell. Why should the Lord of Terror fear anything, least of all his own domain, Hell?. It mattered not, but the prince knew that if Diablo feared it, it must be possible to banish Diablo, Mephisto, and Baal back to Hell. Should the opportunity ever arise, Albrecht decided that he would be ready to do this deed. And now was the time. Opportunity knocked; there was no time to wait. The prince felt that he was invincible for if he could not die, no Prime Evil could stop him.
Late one night, before the larger demons took Tristram, the skeletal Albrecht broke into the home of one of the residents of Tristram. The occupant was terrified, but terror soon ebbed away. Albrecht had slain the poor soul. The skin was stripped from the corpse and body discarded. Albrecht vaguely regretted the act, but his plan was clear. He sought out the witch Adria.
Adria had anticipated Albrecht's arrival for she had already packed up most of her belongings and left. Her shack and cauldron were all that remained. This infuriated the undead prince, but he remained focused and found what he sought. Using some old incantations, Albercht bound the stolen skin to his skeletal form. Due to the size, his bones had to elongate so that he would look somewhat human again. The result was that he looked thin and unhealthy, but it didn't matter. Frail and cursed, Albrecht left Tristram and traveled east.
Like his father before him, Albrecht is cursed to live as one of the living dead. Fortunately, Albrecht has more of his humanity than the Skeleton King had. Both being pawns of Diablo, they developed similar traits and skills. The difference being that Albrecht's goal is his own, whereas Leoric's was controlled by the Lord of Terror.
Albrecht must have something on his head in order to interact with townspeople. Failure to wear even a simple cap results in the display of a sunken spot of flesh in the middle of Albrecht's forehead... a hole that was made by a soulstone. Failure to wear a head covering when speaking to townspeople results in that NPC shunning Albrecht for the remainder of that game. (The NPC is banned until a new game is started. For this reason it is a good idea to keep extra headwear in your stash in case you die and need to buy something before you return for your corpse.)
Cain may not, will not, and can not be saved. The Horadrim know too much. Should Cain guess that Albrecht is Albrecht, he may secretly inform the other townspeople and have Albrecht exorcised. In addition, Cain will be saved from Tristram by the rogues. You do NOT rescue him. In later acts, he may not be visited even for identification. The only time that you may speak with Cain is for the Golden Bird quest in Act 3, but even then you may not accept or pay for item identification. Also, when visiting Cain, something MUST be worn on your head or else you will be exorcised. (Exorcism by Townspeople: Lost all items currently in stash... including quest items. But don't worry in multiplayer, other players can't tip off townies and make them exorcise you.)
When visiting Cain for the Golden Bird quest, you must buy and wear the mask that Ormus offers. If Ormus is not currently offering a mask, shop until he does. This mask is a magical relic and will positively prevent Cain from seeing through your disguise.
The Town of Tristram was once King Leoric's seat of power. It is now a wasteland. Albrecht should make at least one pilgrimage to Tristram and kill everything there in rememberance of his father.
Skill useage is restricted by rank, but any may be learned at any time. (This lets you get the irritating skill button out of the way.) Revive is the only high-level skill that is not restricted by rank.
Revive may be used if and only if Skeleton Mastery is maxed (base 20). (This might change depending on difficulty of play in Nightmare and Hell. Playtesting for Albrecht is not complete, you see, so we thank you for your time in reading this even though it will probably be changed later.)
After defeating Mephisto Albrecht is required to wear Bone Helms. From that point on only Bone Helms may be used. The only exceptions to this rule is if the Undead Crown is found or if a Gemmed Helm (any type of hat) which contains at least 1 Chipped/.../Perfect Skull is used. The Undead Crown, being his father's, is allowed to replace a Bone Helm. A Skull Helm (Gemmed Helm with 1 or more skulls in it) is Albrecht's personal "Undead Crown."
Nothing that is or sounds holy may be used. (Examples: "Of Light," "Of Radiance," "Angel's.") Similar effects on rare, set, and unique items must also be avoided. (Examples: Sigon's Visor- +3 LR, Rare amulet with +1 Sorceress skills.)
To better fit the role, Albrecht, like all skeletal beings, may use only Sword, Axe, and Bow/Crossbow class weapons. Mace class weapons may also be used, but wands and scepters with +Paladin Skills are banned. This is optional, however, as it only adds to the role playing perspective.
Albrecht will NEVER use wands, save his starting wand which is a mini-scepter. It was a gift from his father.
Since Albrecht is royalty, he may wish to use scepters. He does not have to worry about it having +Paladin Skills because, being what he is, Albrecht would corrupt the item thus negating any holy bonuses. (This is the ONLY instance where Albrecht can corrupt magical items. This doesn't mean he can still corrupt it if it has, say, +1 Light. Albrecht can only corrupt +Specific Paladin Skills. (He can corrupt +3 Vengeance but not the Priest's enchantment, for example.))
Wraith - Albrecht is unable to do anything at this stage except surround himself with an Armor of Bone and cause his enemies to take Amplified Damage. The townspeople ask him to cleanse the Den of Evil, yet this is not high priority so he might choose to do so and he might not. Albrecht's real interest is in the Burial Grounds. Once Blood Raven is slain, Albrecht will be able to summon skeletal minions as Blood Raven's sway over the undead will have ended. (Kill Blood Raven to allow Raise Skeleton and Skeleton Mastery.)
Spectre - Albrecht is now informed that Tristram is in ruin and the one known as Deckard Cain is in peril. Albrecht says nothing, but decides to travel to Tristram anyway. (Remember: Do NOT rescue Cain.) After a visit to Tristram, Albrecht's power grows and he learns how to blind and weaken his enemies. (Clear Tristram to allow Dim Vision and Weaken.)
Poltergeist - Charsi requests that Albrecht bring back her Horadric Malus. While searching for it, Albrecht encounters the Smith. He then remembers when Diablo first summoned the Butcher who slew so many of his father's loyal subjects and decides that this Smith must be destroyed. Andariel will also be met during this stage. (Slaying the Smith and Andariel allows Bone Wall and Raise Skeletal Mage. One of these skills - your pick - may be learned after the Smith and the other after Andariel.)
Shade - Albrecht seeks out the Claw Viper Temple in the deserts of Lut Gholein. Once found, he shall dispose of Fangskin. His next target is the possessed one known as the Summoner. Finally, the Lord of Pain must be sent back to Hell. (Slaying Fangskin, the Summoner, and Duriel allows Bone Spear, Terror, and Life Tap. One of these skills - your pick - may be learned after each boss is slain.)
Knight of Darkness - After slaying two of the Seven Powers of Hell, Albrecht becomes a Knight of Darkness. His quest now takes him to Mephisto, Lord of Hatred and reigning King of the Undead. Yet before Albrecht may reach Mephisto, he must dispose of all High Council members (inclusive of the three inside of the Durance). With his final target within striking distance, Albrecht viciously attacks Mephisto. Finally, Albrecht ventures into Hell. Hephasto the Armorer, another Butcher look-a-like, must be destroyed. (Slaying the High Council, Mephisto, and Hephasto allows the use of Bone Prison, Summon Resist, and Decrepify. One of these skills - your pick - may be learned after each target is destroyed.)
King of the Undead - Truly a foe to be recokned with, Albrecht proceeds to knock on Terror's Sanctuary and deal him a deathblow. The slaying of Diablo brings Albrecht his final ability: Bone Spirit.
Many thanks for the input from Grarrrg, Xandar, and Charis
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