This issue never dies, and when it came up again Bashiok added a sort of editorial, explaining why the D3 Team is going to this system. Well, actually he didn’t do that, this time. This time he devoted his post to debunking one commonly-claimed reason for the change. That it makes the game easier to balance, ‘cause the D3 Team is lazy.
There is a continuing idea that we have either said or stand behind the notion that auto-stats are either partially or in-whole being implemented because it makes the game easier to balance. That is completely false.
If manual stat placement was or should become the best system for the game then we would balance for it – bottom line. But the fact is, it isn’t the best system. The game needs to be fun, it needs to be awesome. We’re not going to cut corners or try to make it easier on ourselves by choosing systems that are less work. In fact I’d say the exact opposite is true. Some of things these guys do requires an insane amount of work, but it makes the game better, and that’s why it’s done.
Manual stats ultimately provide no better or more interesting customization options than other systems, and in fact by removing it we’re then able to implement systems which are better and more interesting ways of character customization.
There’s a last thread of “well why can’t we have everything?” that auto-stat opponents hold to, and the simple answer there is that having a bunch of different systems all just sort of tossed in onto each other is not a clean or fun solution. We want a lot of customization, we’ll have a lot of customization, clicking a button to allocate stat points in no way needs to be involved to make that true.