Lower difficulty button to be removed from ROS Hardcore


As covered before, The lower difficulty button can cause a bit of a problem in Hardcore as it can diminish any challenge quite easily. Thankfully blizzard was listening and it should be remedied in the next patch.This comes to us courtesy of Grimiku:


This subject was recently visited again by the developers, and they’ve decided to remove the Lower Difficulty button from Hardcore mode in the next beta patch. This shouldn’t change the feature at all in Normal mode, though. I’ll be sure to keep an eye out for your feedback about this decision, so please be sure to let us know what you think. Thanks!

As hardcore is near and dear to my heart I’m happy to see this change. Getting caught in a tough fight and making it out can be exhilarating, and not making it out can be heartbreaking. What evokes emotion is pausing when things look rough and dropping it down to a level of ease. I am happy to see this go and look forward to some close calls in ROS.

What are your thoughts?

Tagged As: | Categories: Diablo 3, Ex-Blizzard, Game Features, Hardcore

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  1. Great decision. It’s called Hardcore after all.

  2. Good change.

    Should also be removed from SC though. And be replaced by a meaningful survival bonus/death penalty πŸ™‚

    • All they need to do is two things:

      -remove lower difficulty button altogether
      -remove respawn on corpse. The old checkpoint respawn was fine. The hardest Achievement going forward will be the player resurrection one, b/c nobody will ever be able to grab an ally in time.

      • Oh wow, they added respawn on corpse? Ridiculous.

      • I don’t mind it. I’ve mostly played softcore in the beta after playing very little of that for the previous year, so I don’t really remember how resurrection worked previously. But when you die in RoS you have a few seconds before the options appear, and if you choose res on corpse there’s a 5s counter before you appear, and then you’re in ghost mode for a couple of seconds, letting you move away a bit if you like.

        The net result is about 12s of downtime between death and back in the battle, which seems reasonable. It is softcore, after all. If people wanted onerous death penalties, and the attendant changes to strategy, they’d play hardcore. (You can be back in just 5s if someone else clicks your tombstone to resurrect you, but that’s not usually possible since you need a clear area to avoid being hit and interrupting the res process.)

  3. QUOTE

    The hardest Achievement going forward will be the player resurrection one, b/c nobody will ever be able to grab an ally in time.

    As a hardcore player, I still find that achievement to be infinitely harder to obtain.

  4. They should have just made it so that enemy stats are locked on spawn. Lowering the difficulty might make things two screens away you haven’t aggroed yet weaker but the stuff you’re fighting right now has the same stats and you’re still in the same position.

    • Interestingly, they stated that originally that’s exactly how they wanted this feature to work.

    • Yes, if they’re going to have it at all, this is what it should be.

      It sucks when you get to an area a bit harder than you can manage, and you have to quit the game and work back up to it. The alternative would be to stay in the game but turn the difficulty down. Being able to instantly weaken any particular boss or enemy you’re having trouble with is cheap.

    • I imagine they didn’t go with that idea because it’s hard to communicate t the player exactly where and when the lowered difficulty applies. As annoying as restarting a game can be, at least then you know going in exactly what difficulty every monster will be.

  5. QUOTE

    Good change.
    
    Should also be removed from SC though. And be replaced by a meaningful survival bonus/death penalty :)

    There’s actually a reason this is in the game beyond herpaderp difficulty scaling, and it’s not a very holistically-considered reason, but here it is:

    Given that the world scales to your level, now, it is perfectly possible to get a string of bad loot drops and find yourself fighting level X enemies in level (X-5) gear. This will probably harm your experience while playing, but Blizzard gave people an out to downward-adjust difficulty so that they can continue to level smoothly regardless of RNG. In D3 Classic, you could always just a farm a bit to get the gear you needed if the leveling curve was unpleasant, but without this difficulty downgrade option, you’re forced to leave the game in order to make it easier for you to progress. It’s not really a big deal, but I’m 95% certain that this is why the “feature” was originally included.

    They clearly weren’t thinking about HC, though, but I think this option stays available in SC for this reason. At least it’s relatively irrelevant come level cap, since you’ll be picking the “correct” difficulty for your desired challenge+gear level at the start of the play session.

  6. Like this change.

  7. By the way, in the beta and on the PTR, when you disconnect, your character exits the game right away (as opposed to the current 10+ seconds delay)? Does that also work if you pull the plug?

  8. Need the “Seasonal Hero” button back!

  9. As a HC player I am fine with this and in beta I honestly never even thought of doing such a thing.

  10. I’m very glad they removed it. I was asking for this weeks ago. Too easily exploited.

  11. You weren’t playing hardcore if you needed to use this button. Might as well just called it alt f4.

  12. what the hell…i mean i like the change….whats going on ?! they got this right!

  13. I wonder why we don’t have an increase difficulty button too in SC (e.g. you finally got the piece of gear you wanted). Either both or none.

  14. These difficulty levels are annoyance in general. Always surfing to find the proper level and wonder should I go to next difficulty or not?

    When you get stronger you go higher difficulty and feel weak again.. you are never strong compared to monsters unless you stay at the easier difficulty even when getting upgrades to your character.

    • So… instead of having the choice of staying on a level and feeling more powerful or moving up and getting a greater challenge, you’d prefer we be given no choice and be forced to faceroll content we’ve outgeared? No thanks.

  15. QUOTE

    The net result is about 12s of downtime between death and back in the battle, which seems reasonable. It is softcore, after all. If people wanted onerous death penalties, and the attendant changes to strategy, they'd play hardcore.

    Plenty of room between no consequences of dying to HC’s lose your character.
    SC ought to place itself somewhere in between to make SC combat engaging and dangerous as well.

    • Something I can post a vote on at some point, but until then I’m not going to pretend I know what most players want for death penalties in softcore. People often complain about game features by saying Bliz is “forcing” us to play a given way. Of course virtually everything in the game could be said to “force” some play style. If there are huge death penalties or zero death penalty, both are encouraging something in player behavior.

      That said, my impression is that most players want there to be zero or nearly zero death penalty. Even the 10+ second delay now is probably more than most want. Should Bliz do what players want, though? Not in some cases, when it comes to a feature like making items drop too easily, since then the economy and overall balance is screwed up. But I don’t think a death penalty that’s effectively 10s vs. 30s is really swaying any big game balance issues?

  16. I think the little yellow pool things (not sure I want to know what they are filled with) are a good way to handle death penalty – you don’t penalize them for dying, you just take away a bonus (and yes, I know that’s basically the same thing).

  17. QUOTE

    Something I can post a vote on at some point, but until then I'm not going to pretend I know what most players want for death penalties in softcore. People often complain about game features by saying Bliz is "forcing" us to play a given way. Of course virtually everything in the game could be said to "force" some play style. If there are huge death penalties or zero death penalty, both are encouraging something in player behavior.
    
    That said, my impression is that most players want there to be zero or nearly zero death penalty. Even the 10+ second delay now is probably more than most want. Should Bliz do what players want, though?  Not in some cases, when it comes to a feature like making items drop too easily, since then the economy and overall balance is screwed up. But I don't think a death penalty that's effectively 10s vs. 30s is really swaying any big game balance issues?

    Indeed. God I hate the “Blizzard forces us” arguments.
    You are playing a damn game. Being forced to play by the rules and limitations is pretty much what defines a game. Arrrghh.
    Fair enough if you do not like a specific rule, but please people, do not play the freedom card.
    Especially since, as you say, the lack of “something” is itself an incentive.

    A death penalty being 10 sec vs 30 sec would change little.
    But what if the death penalty was losing a buff similar to NV?
    If you got 1% MF/XP for each elite kill, up to 100 max or so. Only lost by dying.
    That would influence behaviour.

    Maybe people do not want it. But I think they would be wrong. Sometimes (I would argue) people don’t know what they would really prefer, if they tried it (and weren’t biased).

  18. QUOTE

    I think the little yellow pool things (not sure I want to know what they are filled with) are a good way to handle death penalty - you don't penalize them for dying, you just take away a bonus (and yes, I know that's basically the same thing).

    Tbh I think the pool is fairly bad design. For multiple reasons:

    1) A survival bonus being something you randomly find? Uh. Shouldnt it be something you gain by surviving. That ought to be the most basic essence of a survival bonus.
    If it can be gained randomly, then the loss as a penalty is also random (for example, if you find a new pool, the cost of losing your current one is close to nothing)

    2) 25% is close to nothing. Not nearly enough to change player bahviour in a meaningful way. The benefit of playing glass-cannon is much more than 25% (in terms of kill speed). Beside, it only is XP, not MF, further reducing the impact.

    3) You can actually use the bonus up, since it has an XP cap. Losing a survival bonus by any other means than “not surviving” makes so little sense that it is hard to grasp which thoughts went into its design. Again the result is that the reward is somewhat random.
    Dying right before your bonus runs out has no cost after all.

  19. QUOTE

    That said, my impression is that most players want there to be zero or nearly zero death penalty.
    i agree, but it's not a surprise considering a large portion of that auidence has demonstrated time and time again they have no patience or desire to experiment, explore, discover, fail, practice and learn. apparently, it's because their kids just set the house on fire and they're at work 23 hours a day and only have an hour to smash monsters. and lord help the designer who inconvience them or get in their way of mashing awesome buttons and crushing monsters.
    
    Tbh I think the pool is fairly bad design.
    godhand had a great survival bonus system. you not only had to survive, but play well to get the bonus.

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