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Diablo IV

Nightmare Dungeons Explained in Diablo 4

Nathan Garvin

Nightmare Dungeons, along with Helltide Events are new activities available when you switch to World Tier 3 (Nightmare difficulty). This page will cover Nightmare Dungeons, providing information on how to activate them, what challenges you’ll face within and what rewards you gain for completing them in Diablo 4.

(1 of 3) Use a Nightmare Sigil from your inventory,

What Are Nightmare Dungeons in Diablo 4?

Nightmare Dungeons are Dungeons that have been activated by a Nightmare Sigil, increasing the difficulty of the enemies within by various means but also making these dungeons more lucrative to clear out.

The Nightmare Sigil determines which Dungeon will be turned into a Nightmare Dungeon, what difficulty Tier that Nightmare Dungeon will be, how many Revives you get within a specific Nightmare Dungeon (lose all your Revives and you’ll fail the Nightmare Dungeon) and what Dungeon Affixes each Nightmare Dungeon has active. The Nightmare Dungeon’s difficulty Tier ranged from Tier 1-100, with everything from 21+ being exclusive to World Tier 4. The higher the Tier, the more powerful the enemies will be and the rarer and more potent loot will potentially be. Clearing Nightmare Dungeons will also earn you Sigil Dust (used to craft Nightmare Sigils), more Nightmare Sigils (which have a higher chance to drop in Nightmare Dungeons) and will allow you to upgrade [Paragon Glyphs].

To create a Nightmare Dungeon, you must have a Nightmare Sigil, which you can use via the “Consumables” tab of your inventory. Once you activate a Nightmare Dungeon, you can attempt to clear said Nightmare Dungeon at any time - just head over to the afflicted Dungeon on your map - its normal Dungeon icon should be replaced by a red-and-white Nightmare Dungeon icon, and the various Nightmare Dungeon stats (difficulty Tier, Dungeon Affixes, etc) will be displayed when you hover over the icon.

Clearing a Nightmare Dungeon isn’t much different from completing a normal Dungeon. Go inside and complete the objectives, usually requiring you to kill enemies and/or find some object to open the way deeper into the Dungeon. At the end, you’ll usually (but not always) fight a Dungeon Boss, and like normal Dungeons, you may still find random Events in Nightmare Dungeons.

All in all, Nightmare Dungeons are more lucrative than Helltide Events, but since they require Nightmare Sigils and you can fail them, they’re a bit less casual. They breathe new life into Dungeons and encourage you to keep running them for increasingly valuable loot.

Nightmare Dungeon Difficulty Tiers

Each Nightmare Dungeon has a difficulty Tier as determined by the Nightmare Sigil that activates it. Generally speaking, the difficulty Tier on a Nightmare Sigil typically correlates to where the Nightmare Sigil was dropped - as a random drop in World Tier 3 you’ll probably get a Tier 1-5 Nightmare Sigil drop, which creates a Tier 1-5 Nightmare Dungeon, and any Nightmare Sigils found in said Nightmare Dungeon will likely be of a similar difficulty Tier. You can create higher Tier Nightmare Sigils via the Occultist by using Sigil Dust to create Nightmare Sigils, and Sigil Dust can be found within Nightmare Dungeons or by breaking down unwanted Nightmare Sigils.

The difficulty Tier of a Nightmare Dungeon determines how powerful the enemies within will be, and sets the ceiling for what quality of loot you’ll find, including how much XP you can allocate to Paragon Glyphs.

Nightmare Dungeon Dungeon Affixes

Every Nightmare Dungeon will have a number of Dungeon Affixes, which add a variety of random properties - both beneficial and detrimental. Negative affixes we’ve encountered had some of the following effects: creating portals that spawn enemies, enraging nearby monsters when their fellows are slain, adding some form of elemental damage to all enemy attacks, granting all Elites a specific affix (“Suppressor”, “Thunder Lance”, etc.) and conjuring a “Drifting Shade” that chases players throughout the dungeon, dealing AoE damage if it catches you.

The Dungeon Affixes in play in each Nightmare Dungeon are determined by the Nightmare Sigil used to create said Nightmare Dungeon, and typically each Nightmare Dungeon will have 3-5 Dungeon Affixes, with higher Tier Nightmare Dungeons possessing more Dungeon Affixes.

(1 of 3) You’ll find significantly more Paragon Glyphs,

Earning Paragon Glyph XP in Nightmare Dungeons

Along with the loot you’ll earn from clearing Nightmare Dungeons, when you complete the Nightmare Dungeon you’ll unlock an Upgrade Glyph, which you can interact with to assign XP to your Paragon Glyphs. As you assign XP to your Glyphs, they’ll level up, increasing the bonuses they yield and potentially increasing their Radius size, which, depending on the Glyph may boost the potency of nodes within the Glyph’s radius or help unlock additional bonuses. Rarer and higher level Glyphs require more XP to upgrade.

How to Do Nightmare Dungeon Runs in Diablo 4

To summarize, to create a Nightmare Dungeon you need a Nightmare Sigil, which can be dropped from:

Each Nightmare Sigil affects a random Dungeon and turns it into a Nightmare Dungeon. As for actually clearing Nightmare Dungeons, this works just like any normal Dungeon, you’ll get a series of objectives to complete - usually hunting down some object or enemy(ies) - after which you’ll proceed to the second half of the Dungeon and clear more objectives before (usually) facing a Dungeon Boss of some description. The normal variant of a specific Dungeon and the Nightmare Dungeon both have the same objectives and play out the same way each time.

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Guide Information
  • Publisher
    Blizzard Entertainment
  • Platforms,
    PC, PS4, PS5, XB One, XB X|S
  • Genre
    Action RPG
  • Guide Release
    15 March 2023
  • Last Updated
    11 November 2023
    Version History
  • Guide Author

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Diablo IV is the ultimate action RPG experience with endless evil to slaughter, countless abilities to master, nightmarish dungeons, and legendary loot. This guide for Diablo 4 currently contains the following:

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