Movement speed is introduced in Diablo II, where characters may either run or walk. Running continuously drains Stamina, a new Character attribute introduced to flesh out running. Walking does not drain Stamina, and even allows recovering it slowly. Standing idle allows regenerating Stamina very quickly. Running makes attacks against the character ignore hit formula, and decreases block chance by 2/3. Thus, it's not recommended to run, at least for melee builds.
Default walking speed is 4 y/s, running increases a player's speed by 2 y/s. The Paladin Skill, Charge, defaults to 9 y/s, but is not influenced by items that change Run/Walk speed. Running drains a character's Stamina, making it impossible to run if depleted.
The limit on reduced speed for Run/Walk is 1 y/s, running speed is calculated by your theoretical walking speed, so it can fall below 3 y/s, but is also prevented from falling under 1 y/s. Note however, there is no lower limit on Charge, meaning a character can charge in reverse if they are slowed below 0 y/s.
When running, the Total Blocking percentage is reduced to 1/3rd of its original value, with a cap of 25%.
Though the speed at which the character runs does not depend on the Character Attributes, it can be modified by many factors. Certain magical items, mostly Boots, have magical attributes that increase Running Speed.
Items that provide a faster Run/Walk bonus come with diminishing returns, meaning that the higher it gets, the less of an increase a character is gaining.
Skills modify your base speed (4 y/s) and provide their full listed effects without diminishing returns. Skills will also affect Charge speed.
Skills that affect movement speed include:
- Light armor has no negative influence on a character's speed. Generally, this consists of leather and lightweight metal armor and small or non-metal shields, as well as all Paladin Shields.
- Medium armor will decrease a character's Run/Walk by -0.2 y/s and Charge by -0.45 y/s. This generally consists of mail and light plate armor and large wooden and metal shields.
- Heavy armor will decrease a character's Run/Walk by -0.4 y/s and Charge by -0.9 y/s. This generally consists of heavier mail and plate armor and Tower Shield and its equivalents.
In Diablo III, movement speed is measured as a percentage, with 100% (initial normal speed) being roughly 6 yards per second (much like average real-life running speed), for both heroes and most monsters. Characters no longer have Stamina, cannot walk (always run), and movement speed penalties for gear are gone. Movement speed may not be brought below 20% by negative effects (remember that monsters build up Crowd Control resistance to it while slowed down).
One may gain a permanent speed increase from items, skills and from Paragon levels. Paragon points award 0.5% speed each (up to 25% total), and Boots may roll up to +12% speed. Some Legendary and Set Items may roll movement speed as well, but normally only boots do so. Generally, players prefer to gain speed by investing Paragon points, to avoid wasting affixes (as 50 points in Paragon stats award lesser amounts of attributes than an affix on a legendary or set item, even for classic players at the level cap of 60).
The permanent speed bonus is limited to +25%, which allows putting 50 Paragon points into the Core section and therefore freeing item affixes for more valuable stats. One of the few ways to gain a permanent speed over 25% is the Monk passive skill Fleet Footed.