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Resistances are a set of values displayed on the Character Screen. They are numerical values that can resist a percentage of damage from various elemental attacks: Fire, Cold, Lightning, Poison, and Magic/Holy/Arcane.

For example, if a character's Fire Resistance is 20, all incoming Fire Damage that the player(s) receives/receive is reduced by 20%.

General Information

In order to gain resistances, the player(s) must equip items that grant their character(s) a bonus toward his/her/their resistances. In most cases, this has to be done with items of Magic quality, or better. However, in Diablo II/Lord of Destruction, certain Class-specific Items, like the Paladin's Shields and the Necromancer's Shrunken Heads may have innate mods that grant resistances. The Paladin Shields increase all resistances, while the Shrunken Heads give the Necromancer Poison resistance.

Diablo I/Hellfire

Resistances are first seen in Diablo I/Hellfire in the form of Magic, Fire, and Lightning. These values cap out at 75%, with the word "MAX" appearing on the character screen whenever the hero has reached that cap.

It should be noted that no one but the Barbarian from Hellfire can ever amass a form of resistances without aid from equipment. This results in players finding 2 good pieces of equipment for resistances most of the time; without them, the various magics at work in the later levels will annihilate the hero(es), no matter their Vitality. Fortunately, there are no resistance penalties for progressing into the Nightmare/Hell difficulty levels, as opposed to the sequel.

Diablo II/Lord of Destruction

The Paladin, Assassin, and Barbarian have their share of advantages when it comes to resistances. The Paladin's Resist Fire, Resist Cold, Resist Lightning and Salvation Auras can help him increase his and the nearby party's resistances, as long as they are active. Upon use of the skill Fade, an Assassin gains a bonus to her resistances, among some other benefits as well. The Barbarian has the skill Natural Resistance to increase his own resistances permanently.

Resistances can also be permanently increased by a Scroll of Resistance, which is created by powerful healers like Malah in Harrogath. It increases all resistances by 10 in Diablo II: Lord of Destruction (for a total of 30, after it has been used on all difficulties).

Minimum Resistances

A character's base resistance varies with each difficulty:

For Diablo II:

For Diablo II: Lord of Destruction, the penalty was increased:

Having a negative resistance value naturally increases the amount of damage a character or creature takes.

The Paladin's Conviction Aura and Necromancer's Lower Resist Curse can also lower resistances by a set amount. The lowest value of all resistances is -100.

Maximum Resistances

A character's default maximum resistance value is 75%, although certain Unique Items and the Paladin's Resistance Aura synergies can raise that number as high as 95%, the cap for resistances. Therefore, a character can never become totally immune to elemental attacks with resistance alone. However, with the help of integer absorb effects (not percentage absorb effects), a character can reduce Elemental Damage to zero, or even heal from it.

Elemental Resistances

There are 4 types of Elemental Resistances that a player can acquire:

Other Resistances

There are 2 uncommon types of Resistances that a player can acquire, and these ones are unaffected by difficulty penalties:

  • Physical (Has a limit of 50% and is found on some Unique Items, the Ber Rune, and 2 Set bonuses)
  • Magic (Has a limit of 75%, but can only be raised to 10% only with a Crafted Safety Shield)


Absorption is a special modifier that is closely related to resistances, and can greatly enhance them as well. See its article for more information.

Diablo III

Resistances return in Diablo III, however, they have been heavily reworked. The penalties for progressing in harder difficulty levels are no more, and the resistances themselves have a rating system. Much like Armor, resistances lower damage dealt by the element they have control over, stacking with armor multiplicatively, and forming the character's toughness. Each resistance is specific to one damage type: Physical, Fire, Cold, Lightning, Poison and Holy/Arcane (Holy counts as the same damage type as Arcane).

Resistances are subject to diminishing returns: the more you get, the less effective each next point becomes. There is no maximum cap for resistances, but it seems to be impossible (at least by legitimate means) to raise protection to 100%. In return, there are several Amulets in the game that can make a character immune to one damage type except Physical, removing the need for that particular resistance.

Resistances are less effective against monsters of higher level than the player. Normally, this may seem irrelevant, after the pre-expansion patch, but if a low level player attempts to join with a higher level player, the lower level will suffer higher damage because higher level monsters require more points into resistances or armor for the same exact value of protection usually received at the lower level.

There are several things to take into consideration about Resistances:

  • 1 point of Resistance is equal to 10 points of Armor. Ideally, one should aim for the equal combination of both (offers best protection for same combination of rolls), but due to the bonus from Core Stats, all classes will always have one form of protection more powerful than the other.
  • Intelligence adds to a hero's Resistance rating at the rate of 10 Intelligence per one 'whole' point. However, stacking Intelligence instead of Resistances is pointless for non-Intelligence classes.
  • Certain skills can add a percentage bonus to a hero's resistances, further improving his/her protection from the elements.
  • The highest resistance to all elements possible for one item slot is 100 (at level 70). The highest specific resistance possible for one item slot is 160 (at level 70) or 200 (unique bonuses, like Andariel's Visage or Thundergod's Vigor). These values can only be seen on Legendary/Set Items. Ancient Legendary Items roll +30% higher values: up to +130 to all resistances, 210 specific resistances, and 260 unique bonuses.
  • Players can gain up to 250 all resistances from Paragon levels. These do not scale with character level, always 5 per point.
  • Up to 78 resistance to all elements can be gained from each Diamond Gem in an armor socket.
  • Resistance to all elements counts as a primary stat, while specific resistances count as secondary stats on items.
  • Monsters do not have permanent resistances or immunities in Diablo III. The only known exceptions are Rogoth the Eternal and Keeper Hashemel. Corrupted Angels could shield themselves against one damage type before patch 2.1.2., and many monsters have skills that allow them to become temporarily immune, or highly resistant to damage.
  • There are no attacks that are unmitigated by resistances, except for very rare occasions of attacks that kill instantly regardless of Toughness.
  • There is (at least for now) no way to reduce enemy player resistances. The only way to reduce one's own resistances is the Glass Cannon ability.
  • Monsters may sometimes reduce the player's resistances: a good example is Curse of Resistance of Enslaved Nightmares or Diablo.
  • Protection against damage does not reduce the duration of Crowd Control effects related to that damage (i.e. Chilled or Frozen for Cold). Instead, players must gather items with reduces duration of control impairing effects affixes, and monsters build up resistance to crowd control effects as they are continuously affected by those. These resistances stack up to 95% (monsters) and 99% (players).
  • Bottomless Potion of the Diamond briefly increases all resistances of the character when used.
  • Extra Armor and All Resistances, as well as All Resistances and specific Resistances, are not mutually exclusive. It is recommended for players to keep this in mind when they are performing Enchanting on an item.
  • Resistance may not normally roll on weapons and non-Shield off-hand items.
  • The Harmony passive skill can partially convert single resistances to resistance to all elements.
Character Attributes
Diablo I Diablo II Diablo III
DexterityAttack RatingArmor ClassBlock
DexterityAttack RatingDefenseBlock
EnergyManaMana Regeneration