Diablo II is divided into four acts, with one more added in the expansion, Lord of Destruction. The acts serve as chapters for the game, each act telling a specific part of the story. Within these acts there are different people, monsters and quests, as well as different landscape and music.
Each act contains six quests, with the exception of Act IV which has three. Each act has its own unique town, where a player may buy and sell items, as well as hire mercenaries, gamble, and recieve quests. From these towns, the player journeys into the wilderness. All acts follow a linear progression path, where most previous areas have to be passed before reaching the next. Some areas, like dungeons and caves, are optional, and must not be finished by the player in order to progress. Some of these areas, both optional and not, contain waypoints. Once a waypoint has been activated, the player can always return to it in later games. The waypoints together form a system of teleporters in an act, which allows for quick travel to and from various areas.
While the quests are central to the story progression of the game, not all are necessary for game advancement. All will offer some reward should you choose to complete them however (like The Golden Bird in Act III), so it is often beneficial to do so. The last quests of an act that involve killing the Act Boss are always mandatory however, even if the player is being rushed by a high-level friend.
The player begins in Act I and moves through each Act in order as each one is completed (always ending in fighting a Great Evil). This is because the hero is tracking down Diablo, who visits each of these places before the player does. The pursuit starts in Khanduras and the Rogue Encampment, a forested landscape similar to temperate climate in Europe. Diablo was at one point imprisoned here, under what would become the town of Tristram. After escaping, Diablo escaped and made his way through the monastery pass.
From there the player continues on to Aranoch and Lut Gholein, a desert town by the shores of the Twin Seas. Baal was imprisoned in the desert surrounding the town, and Diablo travels here to free him.
The third act mainly takes place in Kurast, the capital city of Kehjistan and the center of the Zakarum faith, and the place where the last of the Three, Mephisto, was imprisoned. The region is composed of a dense jungle that has overrun most of the old city.
The last act is Hell itself, where Diablo is finally caught up to and defeated.
The expansion introduces the last act, which centers around Harrogath in the Barbarian region where Baal's army is attacking. This is the place of the Worldstone, and after it is destroyed, the region becomes known as the Dreadlands.
|Name of chapter||Town||Final Boss|
|Act I||The Sightless Eye||Rogue Encampment||Andariel|
|Act II||The Secret of the Vizjerei||Lut Gholein||Duriel|
|Act III||The Infernal Gate||Kurast Docks||Mephisto|
|Act IV||The Harrowing||Pandemonium Fortress||Diablo|
|Act V||Lord of Destruction||Harrogath||Baal|