Blizzard press conference set for Gamescom – Expansion news?
Gamescom gets underway in Cologne in just over a week and this year Blizzard are holding another press conference on Wednesday 5th. It was a couple of years ago at Gamescom that Reaper of Souls was announced as the first expansion so can we expect another expansion announcement this year? There’s been plenty of rumours […]
Diablo 3 Podcast #184: Patch 2.3.1 & Witch Doctors
Patch 2.3.1 on the PTR made a lot of changes, especially to the Witch Doctor. Much discussion of that class, plus Reflects Damage changes, Kanai’s Cube tweaks, Paragon 2000 is broken, and more. Featuring Xanth, Empty1, and Flux. Click through for more details and segment starting times.
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Blizzard Comments on the Crazy PTR Drop Rate


Posted 31 Jul 2015 by at 22:48 GMT

We’ve been posting about the crazy high legendary drop rate on the PTR since the last patch and Season 4 restarted. In the estimation of most players, drop rates for legendary items have been at least double or triple what they are on the Live realm, on all difficulty levels. I don’t think anyone would mind a bit of a stealth buff, but the drop rates have been so high that many players are worrying about the long term viability.

PTR = 4x legendary items

PTR = 4x legendary items

One fan did some actual research, comparing T6 Rift runs on Live vs. PTR and posted his results in handy chart form. (Screenshot of the table to the right.) It was enough to get a Blue reply, albeit not a satisfying one.

Blizzard Comments on the Crazy PTR Drop Rate:

Can we have an official stance on the current greatly inflated drop rate without the 2000% bonus we have on the PTR?

We are currently dropping more than 20 leg per T10 run, and killing a blue goblin with all its duplicates can yield as high as 15 leg. This cannot be intended and go live as it is, because there’s no way GR farming will be able to compete, and any semi casual player will be perfectly geared in a matter of weeks.
Nevalistis: So! There is definitely something wonky going on here, and it’s taken a while for us to track down the issue. RNG can be tricky to test, as it takes a lot of data (and time) to reproduce.

We’re working on resolving this issue, though I don’t have an ETA on the fix. Thank you all for the reports and thorough testing!

Yes, yes, RNG. That said, I noticed legendary drop rates were at least double the Live rate in my very first play session with a brand new char on S4, and nothing I’ve seen in any game since had changed my mind. Everyone playing has noticed it; regular PTR clan chat is full of jokes about how Bliz turned off the +2000% buff since it wasn’t rewarding enough.

Bigger philosophical debates about “how much is too much” in terms of leg drops, the PTR now clearly has a MUCH higher drop rate than you see in live, or than we saw during the first weeks of the v2.3 PTR, when the community buff was turned off. How the leg rate could triple (or more) in the last patch, and that change be unintentional, is the question I’d like to see answered.

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Bashiok Says Goodbye to Blizzard


Posted 31 Jul 2015 by at 21:43 GMT

Bashiok @ SDCC 2014.

Bashiok and his mustache from SDCC 2014.

Micah Whipple AKA DiabloWikiBashiok, the original Diablo 3 community manager, has posted a farewell notice to the Blizzard community. He’s leaving Blizzard to work elsewhere in the industry, and while he’s been back on the WoW CM team since 2012, many Diablo 3 fans still remember his time, from 2009-2012, as the lead D3 CM. Whether or not those are fond memories is open to debate, but here’s his farewell address.

Bashiok Says Goodbye to Blizzard:

I could pretty easily write a few thousand words right now, but I did my best to keep this brief.

I began working at Blizzard way back in October of 2003, and every day of my experience here has been shared with you, the players, and content creators, artists, bloggers, AddOn authors, podcasters, streamers, forum trolls, and— man, anyone remember the old Off-Topic forum back in the day? That place was just absolutely cuckoo bananas.

Anyway, Blizzard—and the community that surrounds it—has defined almost my entire adult life, and I am just so absolutely grateful to all of my friends here for having such an incredible and positive impact on who I am, and who I am yet to become. I don’t think I’ve had to make any decisions as difficult as the one to leave Blizzard, but a new opportunity has come my way, and I’ve decided to take it.

While I think it’s all still sinking in, the other day I realized I actually get to be surprised by Blizzard announcements and releases again. Which, as a lifelong fan and rabid gamer it makes me giddy thinking about being able to sit in the audience at BlizzCon, watching a stream, or reading the newest blog posts, and seeing whatever’s in store next—for the first time.

I’m looking forward to what’s next, and wishing you a life of joy, insatiable curiosity, and happy gaming.

Definitely thankful,
Bashiok

There’s a reason he says “thankful” in his closing, and if you don’t know it, feel lucky you weren’t here to live it. A quick googling will give you an idea, and if you click through you’ll get some more detail on that, plus what turned into a major article summarizing his time as a Diablo 3 community manager. If you’re knew or just want a trip down memory lane, this should enlighten you as to why so much of the community still harbors a grudge, or at least has a strong reaction to Bashiok’s name.

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Immortal King Six Piece Set Buff Coming


Posted 31 Jul 2015 by at 18:49 GMT

Barbarian players have been complaining that the six piece bonus for the Immortal King’s set is lacking, especially compared to other Barb sets. Happily, Blizzard agrees and John Yang shared their plans to fix the problem, via BIGGAR NUMBARS!!11! in the next PTR patch.

Immortal King Six Piece Set Buff Coming:

We agree with the general sentiment here that Immortal King’s 6pc bonus needs an adjustment to perform more comparably to Wrath of the Wastes Whirlwind builds. Sets/builds performing more comparably with each other aligns with our general goal of build diversity, including at high-end play. In the next PTR patch you will see the following change:

Immortal King’s Call

  • (6) Set Bonus

    • Increased damage bonus from 100% to 250%.

As it is, hardly anyone uses the six piece IK set, just the 4P paired with other stuffs. Perhaps that’ll change with this buff coming in? And yes, you’re free to point out that 6P buff was 500% during the last PTR testing, before Blizzard cruelly stole it away, tucking it into the Mortick’s Bracers before they buried them both at sea.

Thanks for the continued testing and feedback.

http://www.diabloii.net/blizzard-tracker/devthread/us/18300224495[/source]
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Tagged As: | Categories: Barbarian, Item Sets, John Yang | 1 Comment

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Record GRift Exploit Demonstrated


Posted 31 Jul 2015 by at 09:15 GMT

The latest hotfix list contained a cryptic message about a bug fix involving high Greater Rifts.

Fixed an issue where players could sometimes enter a high level Greater Rift with monsters that have very low hit points.

Lots of players wondered what that meant, and thanks to a useful video, now everyone can know. The trick was to clear a low level Grift as quickly as possible, and then enter a normal Nephalem Rift immediately afterwards, sort of sneaking back in before the game closed the Grift. The player could then very quickly clear the entire Rift up to the Guardian, portal out, start a Grift on their highest possible level, and find themselves on the same already-cleared map, with the same low hit point Guardian waiting to die… and with hit points appropriate to the low level Rift.

This exploit was how we kept seeing top PTR Leaderboard times of like 2:31 for GR65.

Click through for the video showing off the entire process, and thanks to Flying Dragon for creating it.

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Rift & Grift Monster EXP Changes in Patch 2.3


Posted 30 Jul 2015 by at 11:09 GMT

Done already?!

Done already?!

There’s an amusing bug now present on the PTR in which the displayed progress on the percent completion bar doesn’t match up with the actual progress, and Rift or Grift Guardians are spawning while players are still at 85% or 91% or wherever.

I played some PTR with my new S4 char today and in every Rift and Grift I entered, this bug surfaced, with the Guardian spawning when I was in the 83-89% range. A thread about the bug on the PTR Feedback forum got a Blue reply.

Tsarnis:
I wanted to pop in and let you know that we are aware of this and that this issue is visual only. The actual amount of progress required to complete a rift is correct, but the progress bar visual itself is inaccurate. I’ve added this to the known issues list for now, but this will be corrected in our next PTR patch.

Thanks for the reports, everyone!

A few samples from my games today.

Alas, you don’t get anything if you keep going to 100% after killing the Guardian in a Rift. There are no second breakfasts! I actually like the bug in a way, since it seems to give a view of what your % completion would have been last patch, when lots of monster progress values were boosted to make Rifts feel a bit faster.

As Blizzard shared in the original Patch 2.3 notes, they’ve boosted the progress required to complete Rifts and Grifts, though their patch notes were cryptic about the tweaks.

  • The amount of progress required to complete a Nephalem Rift or Greater Rift has been increased.
  • The experience and rift progress granted by several monsters has been adjusted to be more in line with the difficulty required to kill them.
  • Well great, but what does that mean? Thankfully, Blizzard spelled it out in more detail in a focused feedback post, and now we’ve got some actual numbers compiled by players who have been testing on the PTR and taking careful notes of how much progress is granted by each type of enemy.

    Click through for Blizzard’s info and those new and ever-changing progress +/- figures.

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    Diablo 3 Wallpaper Watch #141: Kanai’s Cube


    Posted 30 Jul 2015 by at 08:31 GMT

    HolyKnight has created a very nice Diablo 3 wallpaper celebrating Kanai’s Cube and memorializing the fallen Blizzard artist. You can see as the featured image below, along with some of HK’s other recent Diablo III wallpapers. They feature nice game locations, some of the Diablo characters in Heroes of the Storm, and congrats to HK on recently hitting the seventh anniversary of his first D3 Wallpaper.

    How far we’ve all come in the years since then.

    You can see the large desktop size version of all these images in our Diablo 3 Wallpaper gallery, along with many hundreds of other large rectangles of Diablo 3 artwork.

    2844x1600_KKG_Kanai_Cube_Tribute_by_Holyknight3000

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    Tagged As: | Categories: Fan Stuff, Wallpapers | 2 Comments

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    4

    The Curse of Tristram Trailer: SC2 Modding


    Posted 30 Jul 2015 by at 08:20 GMT

    curse-of-tristram1A couple of months back we posted a short video showing some gameplay from The Curse of Tristram, a Diablo 2 style game being created via modding the Starcraft 2 game engine. The project has progressed since then, and today the first trailer has been released.

    It shows gameplay action in several different environments nicely modeled after D2 areas, including the Act One caves and surface areas, plus the Act Five snowy ruins you see in the screenshot. There are even UI windows just like those from Diablo 2, with customizable classic four attributes, skill trees with skill points, etc. Check it out, The Curse of Tristram Trailer: SC2 Modding.

    I don’t know if it’s actually any fun to play, and it would be nice if they could get the movement speed to match the frantic leg motion, and that Starcraft futuristic font has to go. Still, to paraphase the saying about how you feel watching a bear ride a bike or a dog walk on its hind legs, “It is not done well; but you are surprised to find it done at all.”

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    Tagged As: | Categories: Diablo 2, Modding, Starcraft 2, Videos | 4 Comments

    Latest Diablo 3 News

    Carnevil Lag Fix Coming Soon


    Posted 29 Jul 2015 by at 20:55 GMT

    Massive darts @ 13 FPS...

    Massive darts @ 13 FPS…

    The Carnevil WD helm grants very powerful abilities via poison darts from Fetishes, but the downside is heavy machine load, which makes the build unplayable for some players. Thankfully, a fix is in the works. Carnevil Lag Fix Coming Soon:

    John Yang: We’ve made a design change to Carnevil with the goal of reducing lag caused by the build without changing the overall power level. To clarify, the lag is primarily caused by the high number of Poison Darts being fired (20+ piercing projectiles) at a high attack speed (2+ times per second) with the build. The change is as follows:

    Instead of “Every one of your up to 23 Fetishes shoot a Poison Dart every time you do”, Carnevil is now “The 5 Fetishes closest to you will shoot a powerful Poison Dart when you do.”

    “Powerful” in this case means those 5 Poison Darts deal 3.8x the damage that a single Fetish Poison Dart used to do. In other words, those 5 Fetishes will deal 19 previous Poison Darts’ worth of damage, with the expectation that the remaining 4 piercing Poison Darts’ worth of damage will be made up for by the other ~18 Fetishes who are now using basic attacks.

    Our internal testing showed performance improvements while maintaining the general feel and playstyle, and we hope you all will feel the same when you see the changes next PTR patch.

    The change sounds like it’ll make the build more strategic, too. Instead of Fetishes scattered all over the screen, shooting in every direction, now it’ll just be the ones near you. It should give the WD more control over what they’re targeting and which direction they’re firing from?

    Witch Doctors, like the two on our new podcast, have excite?

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