Some players who enjoy partying up like the current system, but many players who feel that solo play is more skill-based, or a purer form of gaming, have long complained about how heavily D3 and RoS incentivize multiplayer. The whole issue was really spelled out a couple of months ago in comments by the first player to achieve Paragon 2000, where he talked about what a waste of time it was to play solo. It’s not just about high Paragon e-peen, it’s the fact that very high paragon levels are *required* to achieve the top spots on the Grift leaderboards, which means anyone who wants to compete for top Grift times, even in single player, needs to spend most of their time grinding in party games to achieve those Paragon levels.
So what does Blizzard think of this state of affairs? They’re pretty much okay with it, at least judging from Wyatt’s comments in the chat this week. Here’s an excerpt:
The issue is that this is only true when you and your friend are exactly the same power level. Realistically, in Diablo III, the power level of players varies widely. You may be in full Ancient gear with your 6-piece set bonuses and all the appropriate complementary legendaries while your friend only has their 4-piece bonus and a non-ancient weapon. Is it okay for your friend to join your game and your experience to be worse?
We took a long look at the way the game has evolved over the last three years and made a judgment call: as much as possible, we want a friend joining your game to make your experience better, not worse. People shouldn’t feel they need to inspect you when you join a public game and your friend that stopped playing for two months shouldn’t feel like a burden for wanting to play with you. Generally, you should prefer to have company in your game than not.
Actually, I object starting at the first sentence. Why should party always be better? Why should someone in crappy gear get more exp leeching off their friend than I do working harder to succeed solo? Why should someone else in good gear get more exp for carrying their friend than I do kicking ass in solo? Why should any four players fooling around in a PuG earn far more exp than one or even two expert players do?
Obviously Bliz has simply decreed that playing in a party *should* be more rewarding, but it’s not like there’s some objective proof of that. It’s just an opinion, and they could as easily say, “Solo should be more rewarded since it’s all about your individual skill, and not something you can achieve by using other players as crutches.”
In MP player get the advantage of much faster bounties via split-farming, plus more pets for tanking, plus shared party buffs, plus the monsters actually decrease in HPs (divided per player), plus you can take turns tanking, plus monster AI is terrible allowing for easy survival for glass cannon ranged chars… and parties *STILL* get huge EXP buffs on top of all that?
What do you guys think? Click through for the full Wyatt Cheng quote from the chat, where he talks about the different types of party exp buffs and (sort of) admits that at least one of them is probably OP.