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"Keep your enemies close, and your blades closer."— Viz'jaq'taar saying(src)
The Order has its origins in the Mage Clan Wars. In the aftermath of the conflict, the Vizjerei foreswore the use of demonic magic. To this end, the Viz-jaq'taar were created, a secret order whose sole goal was to police the Mage Clans. The Order remains veiled in secrecy, and few people, even among the Mage Clans, know of its existence. However, the mere rumor of their existence has been enough to prevent many mages from falling into temptation. During the return of the Prime Evils, the Order's actions became more public. They dispatched one of their own to investigate, the assassin in question allying with a group of heroes who prevented the Prime Evils' schemes from coming into fruition.
Knowing that the Order might be itself corrupted if exposed to magic, the Vizjerei deemed that the Assassins would have to possess the purest, most focused minds, that they should draw their power from within, not without. As such, the Order does not employ magic directly. Rather, Assassins use ingenious devices and enchanted items to battle those possessing great magical powers. To further their campaign against demonic corruption, they hone the natural martial abilities of their bodies, both physical and mental/psychic. They train extensively in the use of a specialised type of weapon—special blades that are attached to their wrists, which are used in conjunction with their style of martial arts. Additionally, Assassins are masters of infiltration, using a variety of shadow disciplines.
The martial arts techniques used by Assassins fall into two groups. The first type are charge-up moves, attacks that add a "charge" for each successful attack done within a short period of time. The second type is the finishing move, which follows charge-up strikes, adding a charge of its own.
- The Assassins technically made their first appearance in Diablo II via the character Natalya, who claimed that she was a member of an order called the "Khral-Harzhek." Deckard Cain claims that the Order was almost as old as the Horadrim. The manual for Diablo II: Lord of Destruction however, states that the Order's name is the "Viz-Jaq'taar," and that its formation occurred long before that of the Horadrim. Presumably this is a retcon.