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Monster level

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The map overlay, showing monster level

Every explorable zone has an associated monster level which roughly describes how difficult it is. Players can view a zone's monster level in the top right corner of the screen by pressing Tab.

Each area has a predetermined non-random monster level. Monster level progresses at a more-or-less steady pace as the player's character advances through the game. Currently the monster levels range from 1 (The Twilight Strand) to 67 (The Ossuary/The Reliquary/The Feeding Trough) in the acts and 68 to 84 in the maps.

What monster level affects

The level of a monster determines its life, damage, and defenses. A monster's level also limits which affixes it can receive if it is magic or rare, including special affixes such as Nemesis and Bloodlines modifiers.

Monster level determines the item level of items found in chests in the area and items dropped by monsters[1]:

  • Normal monsters drop items of the same level as the area's monster level.
  • Magic monsters drop items of monster level +1.
  • Rare and Unique monsters drop items of monster level +2.

There is a penalty to the number of items dropping in areas more than two levels lower than your character level. See Drop Rate.