Diablo 2: Resurrected is an incredible remaster of the original game, and a comfortable entry point into the Diablo universe for those interested in checking out this series ahead of next year's hotly anticipated release of Diablo 4. If you are tough enough to get past the Act 1 boss Andariel, you'll be able to pick up the Horadric Cube just a bit later in Act 2, and it remains with your character throughout the rest of the game.
The Horadric Cube is one of the most powerful tools available to your character, allowing you to craft items, upgrade runes and gems, socket items, and much more with the press of its Transmute button. It can be held on your person for a nifty inventory slot upgrade, or it can be held in your stash; wherever you decide to keep it, it will work in the same way.
Players may come from Diablo 3 and be surprised by the lack of instructions with the Horadric Cube in Diablo 2: Resurrected and may not be inclined to experiment and risk losing precious crafting materials. Here we have laid out all the recipes (except those used for end-game crafting; those deserve a guide of their own) that you'll need to master Diablo 2: Resurrected. This includes new recipes introduced with Patch 2.4 that allow for upgrades to set weapons and armor.
Horadric Cube rune recipes
We'll get this one out of the way first, as we have already written a Diablo 2: Resurrected rune and runeword guide with information about "cubing up" runes.
From El rune to Ort rune, all you need is three runes in the cube when you press the Transmute button to create the next rune in the hierarchy. For example, three El runes become one Eld rune. Three Eld runes become one Tir rune, and so forth.
- 3 El = 1 Eld
- 3 Eld = 1 Tir
- 3 Tir = 1 Nef
- 3 Nef = 1 Eth
- 3 Eth = 1 Ith
- 3 Ith = 1 Tal
- 3 Tal = 1 Ral
- 3 Ral = 1 Ort
- 3 Ort = 1 Thul
This changes at the point you which to create Amn and anything higher, which requires a chipped gem in order to upgrade to the next rune. The recipes for crafting the following runes are:
- 3 Thul + 1 Chipped Topaz = 1 Amn
- 3 Amn + 1 Chipped Amethyst = 1 Sol
- 3 Sol + 1 Chipped Sapphire = 1 Shael
- 3 Shael + 1 Chipped Ruby = 1 Dol
- 3 Dol + 1 Chipped Emerald = 1 Hel
- 3 Hel + 1 Chipped Diamond = 1 Io
From Lum and above, flawed gems are required for upgrades:
- 3 Io + 1 Flawed Topaz = 1 Lum
- 3 Lum + 1 Flawed Amethyst = 1 Ko
- 3 Ko + 1 Flawed Sapphire = 1 Fal
- 3 Fal + 1 Flawed Ruby = 1 Lem
- 3 Lem + 1 Flawed Emerald = 1 Pul
- 2 Pul + 1 Flawed Diamond = 1 Um
Once you need to craft Mal, you will need plain gems:
- 2 Um + 1 Topaz = 1 Mal
- 2 Mal + 1 Amethyst = 1 Ist
- 2 Ist + 1 Sapphire = 1 Gul
- 2 Gul + 1 Ruby = 1 Vex
- 2 Vex + 1 Emerald = 1 Ohm
- 2 Ohm + 1 Diamond = 1 Lo
The final five and rarest of the rune recipes require flawless gems as part of the upgrade:
- 2 Lo + 1 Flawless Topaz = 1 Sur
- 2 Sur + 1 Flawless Amethyst = 1 Ber
- 2 Ber + 1 Flawless Sapphire = 1 Jah
- 2 Jah + 1 Flawless Ruby = 1 Cham
- 2 Cham + 1 Flawless Emerald = 1 Zod
Horadric Cube gem recipes
Chipped gems begin dropping in Act 1 Normal, moving all the way up to perfect gems as you progress through the game. Chipped gems actually become extremely rare outside of Normal difficulty, so keep a good stash as you will need them throughout the game. The Horadric Cube can be used to upgrade gems if you find yourself needing better quality.
We'll use the Ruby as an example for the recipes below, but rest assured the same holds true for all gems, including skulls. The rule of thumb is that you need 3 of any particular gem to upgrade it to its superior quality:
- 3 Chipped Ruby = 1 Flawed Ruby
- 3 Flawed Ruby = 1 Ruby
- 3 Ruby = 1 Flawless Ruby
- 3 Flawless Ruby = 1 Perfect Ruby
Horadric Cube repair and recycling recipes
In the early game, gold can be hard to come by. Since your items degrade at a fairly quick pace, repairing at a vendor might be out of the question. Luckily, you can repair and recharge equipment with the Horadric Cube. Note that these recipes will not work on Ethereal items; once they're broken, they're broken forever.
In terms of recharging, this has to do with items that have skills under the "Charge" category. For example, a staff might have Teleport skill charges that can be used by any character regardless of class.
- 1 Ral Rune + 1 Armor = 1 Repaired Armor
- 1 Ral Rune + 1 Flawed Gem + 1 Armor = 1 Repaired/Recharged Armor
- 1 Ort Rune + 1 Weapon = 1 Repaired Weapon
- 1 Ort Rune + 1 Chipped Gem + 1 Weapon = 1 Repaired/Recharged Armor
In a similar manner, you can combine items to create other dispensables and consumables. For example, you can turn bolts into arrows and vice versa. Here are some helpful recipes to recycle your junk.
- 2 Arrow Quivers = 1 Bolt Quiver
- 2 Bolt Quivers = 1 Arrow Quiver
- 1 Strangling Gas Potion + 1 Healing Potion = 1 Antidote Potion
- 1 Axe + 1 Dagger = 1 Bundle Throwing Axes
- 1 Spear + 1 Arrow Quiver = 1 Bundle Javelins
- 3 Health Potions + 3 Mana Potions + 1 Chipped Gem = 1 Rejuvenation Potion
- 3 Health Potions + 3 Mana Potions + 1 Regular Gem = 1 Full Rejuvenation Potion
- 3 Rejuvenation Potions = 1 Full Rejuvenation Potion
This also works for more important items like rings, amulets, and rare items.
- 3 Magic Rings = 1 Random Magic Amulet
- 3 Magic Amulets = 1 Random Magic Ring
- 3 Perfect Gems + 1 Magic Item = 1 Random Magic Item (same type)
- 6 Perfect Skull + 1 Rare Item = 1 Random Rare Item (same type, low quality)
- 1 Perfect Skull + 1 Stone of Jordan Ring + 1 Rare Item = 1 Random Rare Item (same type, high quality)
Horadric Cube item utility recipes
Runewords are an integral part of creating the perfect demon slaying builds in Diablo 2: Resurrected, but there can be difficulty in finding armor with the perfect amount of sockets via normal loot drops. It's possible but time-consuming and leaves you at the mercy of RNG. To improve your odds of getting the perfect armor primed for your runeword, the Horadric Cube allows you to upgrade and socket armor yourself. You are still hoping RNG awards the number of sockets you need, but you can at least narrow down the loot pool this way. With these recipes, you cannot use cracked or superior but you can use ethereal if you choose. When you're ready to gamble, here are the recipes you need:
- 1 Ral + 1 Amn + 1 Perfect Amethyst + 1 Normal Weapon = Socketed Weapon (same type)
- 1 Tal + 1 Thul + 1 Perfect Topaz + 1 Normal Body Armor = Socketed Body Armor (same type)
- 1 Ral + 1 Thul + 1 Perfect Sapphire + 1 Normal Helm = Socketed Helm (same type)
- 1 Tal + 1 Amn + 1 Perfect Ruby + 1 Normal Shield = Socketed Shield (same type)
- 1 Hel + 1 Town Portal + 1 Socketed Item = Empty Sockets (socketed runes, gems, or jewels destroyed)
- 1 El + 1 Chipped Gem + 1 Low Quality Armor = Normal Quality Armor (same type)
- 1 Eld + 1 Chipped Gem + 1 Low Quality Weapon = Normal Quality Weapon (same type)
Magic and rare armor can also be socketed, however these sockets cannot be used for runewords:
- 3 Perfect Skulls + 1 Stone of Jordan + 1 Rare Item = Socketed Rare Item (same item, 1 socket)
- 3 Chipped Gems + 1 Magic Weapon = 1 Socketed Magic Weapon (ilvl 25)
- 3 Regular Gems + 1 Socketed Weapon = 1 Socketed Magic Weapon
- 3 Flawless Gems + 1 Magic Weapon = 1 Socketed Magic Weapon (ilvl 30)
Horadric Cube item upgrade recipes
Unique and rare items can be upgraded to the next quality via the Horadric Cube. The hierarchy of loot quality is Normal < Exceptional < Elite. Knowing how to improve the quality can come in especially handy if you find a useful low-level unique early game that you wish to take to use in the higher difficulties.
For example, a Goldwrap Belt can be upgraded to become a Goldwrap Battle Belt with the right recipe, which will in turn increase its defense stats and potion slots. It can be upgraded — or "upped" in Diablo slang — again to become the Goldwrap Troll Belt.
This moves the item from normal to exceptional to elite along the way. In the case of armor, granted bonuses will remain the same but defense (and requirements) will climb. In the case of weapons, granted bonuses will also remain but damage and requirements will climb. This can be done to ethereal items, but it cannot be done to runewords or items you've crafted.
- 1 Tal + 1 Shael + 1 Perfect Diamond + 1 Normal Unique Armor = 1 Exceptional Unique Armor (same item, upgraded)
- 1 Ko + 1 Lem + 1 Perfect Diamond + 1 Exceptional Unique Armor = 1 Elite Unique Armor (same item, upgraded)
- 1 Ral + 1 Sol + 1 Perfect Emerald + 1 Normal Unique Weapon = 1 Exceptional Unique Weapon (same item, upgraded)
- 1 Lum + 1 Pul + 1 Perfect Emerald + 1 Exceptional Unique Weapon = 1 Elite Unique Weapon (same item, upgraded)
The same process can be done to rare items.
- 1 Ral + 1 Thul + 1 Perfect Amethyst + 1 Normal Rare Armor = 1 Exceptional Rare Armor (same item, upgraded)
- 1 Ko + 1 Pul + 1 Perfect Amethyst + 1 Exceptional Rare Armor = 1 Elite Rare Armor (same item, upgraded)
- 1 Ort + 1 Amn + 1 Perfect Sapphire + 1 Normal Rare Weapon = 1 Exceptional Rare Weapon (same item, upgraded)
- 1 Fal + 1 Um + 1 Perfect Sapphire + 1 Exceptional Rare Weapon = 1 Elite Rare Weapon (same item, upgraded)
Diablo 2: Resurrected Patch 2.4 brought a whole lot of changes to the game, including a buff to set items to make them more viable. Previous to this patch it was not possible to upgrade set items, but now we can up them to Exceptional and Elite levels. Here are the recipes you need to reach set perfection:
- 1 Ral + 1 Sol + 1 Perfect Emerald + 1 Normal Set Weapon = 1 Exceptional Set Weapon (same item, upgraded)
- 1 Lum + 1 Pul + 1 Perfect Emerald + 1 Exceptional Set Weapon = 1 Elite Set Weapon (same item, upgraded)
- 1 Tal + 1 Shael + 1 Perfect Diamond + 1 Normal Set Armor = 1 Exceptional Set Armor (same item, upgraded)
- 1 Ko + 1 Lem + 1 Perfect Diamond + 1 Exceptional Set Armor = 1 Elite Set Armor (same item, upgraded)
Horadric Cube special event recipes
The Horadric Cube is crucial in kicking off a couple of Diablo 2: Resurrected's special events.
The Secret Cow Level is legendary in Diablo lore, and for good reason. This is a great
pasture place to farm for items and experience but is only accessible via a portal created with a Horadric Cube recipe. It can be created by any character that has defeated Baal with the same difficulty that they're trying to open the portal.
For example, a character that has defeated Baal (with the quest completed) in Normal difficulty will be able to open the portal in Normal. You'll need a Tome of Town Portal and a Wirt's Leg. Wirt's Leg is acquired by heading for the cairn stones in the Stony Field, going through the portal to Tristram, and lifting it from Wirt's corpse.
Note that as long as you have the right ingredients, you can open the portal as many times as you want, but only one portal may exist per game.
- 1 Tome of Town Portal + 1 Wirt's Leg = Secret Cow Level Portal
The Pandemonium Event is a mega-boss battle that ends with the player receiving a coveted Hellfire Torch Large Charm. Keys must be sourced from bosses throughout the game — Key of Terror from Countess, Key of Hate from Summoner, and Key of Destruction from Nihlathak — and placed into the Cube together to open a portal to a demi-boss.
- 1 Key of Terror + 1 Key of Hate + 1 Key of Destruction = Portal to Matron's Den, Furnace of Pain, or Forgotten Sands (random)
A good tip is to gather three of each key for a "key set" before beginning. This will prevent you from opening the same portal twice. Once you've killed the demi-boss in each of the three portals, place the three gathered organ (one drops from each demi-boss) into the Cube.
- 1 Mephisto's Brain + 1 Diablo's Horn + 1 Baal's Eye = Portal to Uber Tristram
Defeat the bosses in Uber Tristram and a Hellfire Torch will drop. This is one of the most coveted items in the game due to how much time it takes to prepare for and how difficult it is to complete.
Finally, you can create Tokens of Absolution in the Horadric Cube. Tokens are used to reset your character's attributes and skill points. Once you've used up the three free respecs granted by Akara, this is the only way to reset your character.
- 1 Twisted Essence of Suffering + 1 Charged Essence of Hatred + 1 Burning Essence of Terror + 1 Festering Essence of Destruction = 1 Token of Absolution
The Twisted Essence of Suffering can drop from Andariel or Duriel, the Charged Essence of Hatred can drop from Mephisto, the Burning Essence of Terror can drop from Diablo, and the Festering Essence of Destruction can drop from Baal. Note that this only applies to Hell difficulty.
More Diablo 2: Resurrected resources
Diablo 2: Resurrected may be the first experience of the grim world of Sanctuary for many players, and has perhaps sparked interest in Diablo 3 players who want to go back and experience a darker more foreboding game. The gameplay and grind can be quite stark in contrast to Diablo 3, but no problem; we have a bunch of guides that can help. Our roundup of 15 beginners Diablo 2: Resurrected tips and tricks will help greenhorns get off to a good start, and our Diablo 2: Resurrected guide to classes and abilities will take your characters to the next level.
Diablo 2: Resurrected has cross save enabled, meaning whether you choose to play on Windows PC, Xbox or Nintendo Switch, your save will travel with you.
If you're worried that your PC isn't quite up to handling the new graphics, be sure to check out the best PCs for playing Diablo 2: Resurrected for something that will be up to the task.
More than a fresh coat of paint
Diablo 2: Resurrected is a divine remaster of Blizzard's iconic action RPG set in the dark foreboding world of Sanctuary. With cross save you can slay the demons of hell on Windows PC, Xbox consoles, Nintendo Switch and Playstation and pick up your pursuit of the Dark Wanderer wherever you game.
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Cale Hunt is formerly a Senior Editor at Windows Central. He focuses mainly on laptop reviews, news, and accessory coverage. He's been reviewing laptops and accessories full-time since 2016, with hundreds of reviews published for Windows Central. He is an avid PC gamer and multi-platform user, and spends most of his time either tinkering with or writing about tech.
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