Blizzard on Random Drops and Nasty Keywardens

A few more useful forum posts from late Thursday.

We’ve seen an amazing amount of paranoid, “y u no understand ‘random’ means?” posts of late, mostly about item drop rates, but this one is about my favorite. Realize that this is from the second day of the patch, and this is a very partial quote from the OPs rambling manifest. Click the link to read all of the tinfoilhatism:

It was too good to be true

Don’t know why blizz had to nerf the drop rates again. It’s almost back to 1.0.4 levels. I’m talking about legendary and set items. Yes, I farm a lot non stop, and I can honestly say something is different. When the patch launched, I was running the same thing and I would get at least 1 legendary per run, or 1 every 2 runs. Same goes with my friends, none of them are getting any legendaries now, and they farm a lot. I farm the same amount of time each day. usually 8 hours. Today been farming 6 hours, still 0 legendaries, 0 sets.
Lylirra: Item drop rates do not Deep Breath more, guys. =/

– We haven’t made any changes to drop rates or drop quality.
– They are same as they were yesterday, when the patch went live.
– We implemented some hotfixes this morning, but they weren’t related to items at all.
– Those changes can be found here.

In all likelihood, you’re just experiencing normal RNG. If, however, you feel like something may be bugged, go ahead and drop a line in the Bug Report forum so we can investigate.

Elsewhere, someone feels that DiabloWikiXah’Rith the Keywarden is too fierce.

I decided to play my barb for the first time in a long time today. It was a lot of fun until I got to Xah. He was waaaay too tough. So then I adjusted my skills. He still pwned me instantly. Then i went to the AH and spent a decent penny to nearly dbl my DMG, and increase defense by a decent amount too. Still, very very difficult and still can not kill him. For the regular story mode he is WAY too strong.
Lylirra: It’s not a bug, but we’re definitely paying close attention to player feedback about Xah’rith’s current difficulty — not just in Inferno, but in all difficulty levels, and at all MP levels too.

We agree that he may be a little bit too challenging at the moment, and are discussing the possibility of either reducing his outgoing damage, tweaking what affixes he spawns with, or moving his spawn location (right now, he’s kind of hard to avoid if you’re just questing normally). We’d like to hear more from the community on the topic first, though, before we make any decisions.

In the end, we want the keywardens to provide a fun challenge for players, and be a little more difficult than the surrounding wildlife (i.e. a fight you have to put some thought into), but we don’t want that to happen at the expense of being able to progress through an Act.

I haven’t tried Xan’Rith yet, but I had time to bag DiabloWikiOdeg the Keywarden a couple of times this morning, with the difficulty cranked all the way up to MP1, and got no keys. He popped 4 rares each time though, so at least there’s that. He didn’t kill me, but he tried; I’d never before seen a boss cast DiabloWikiJailer that repeatedly and frequently.

Update: In the comments there’s general agreement that Xah’Rith is too much of a difficulty spike. Not just on Inferno either; a couple of players say he destroyed their Hardcore characters when they first encountered him while leveling up on Normal or Nightmare, so beware.

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37 thoughts on “Blizzard on Random Drops and Nasty Keywardens

  1. this nonsense about blizzard this and that around item drops gives me headaches, random is random. I doubt they have an employee watching each and every player manually adjusting their drop rates based on that.

    the problem is, everyone wants everything NOW. it is not like it was back in diablo 2, they want to go int he game and get 1-2 legendaries and they want the game to last only 30 minutes at least being able to easily beat the content.

    in terms of Xah’Rith the Keywarden, you know, i ran into him the first time last night. He gave me a scare at the start, but once i adapted i killed him first attempt no problem. i just had to kite.

    no key drop though, and only level 1 mp. I am testing the waters out progressively. He is a challange but a doable challange.

    • Not sure how much you guys play/farm, but this has happened every patch and is reported my many folks. First day or two after every patch people see quite a few drops, then the drop rates seem to disappear.

      Blizzard has never explained it as anything other than RNG is RNG, but when it consistently happens I’m pretty sure there is a reason behind it. All conspiracy theories, but it makes sense that waves of people come back to D3 each patch to “see if it is better” and when they find loot they want to play more.

      I think that this behavior after 1.0.3/1.0.4/1.0.5 kinda proves that RNG is not RNG in this case.

      • We got a loot switch it goes from 0 to 1.

        I give order when and how to activate the switch.

        I have full control over the item flow in D3.

        I have full control over the AH and the RMAH.

        If you think you’re in control think again.

        -Supreme D3 Loot Overlord Bobby K.

      • Still highly doubt blizzard is doing this, perhaps random is random, but people are STILL getting lots of drops

      • I agree with FruitLord there is most definitely something about a patch that ups the legendarys for the first day or two..

        • You mean like the fact that people play MORE the first couple of days after a patch and are thus more likely to find something, only to gradually cut down on their farming time as they hit streaks of no legendary drops?

          • I’m sorry guys but this does happen, I’m not saying Blizzard is doing this, more then likely its a bug of some sort but I have 280 hours on my account (Dracon#1255) with 236 hours on my magic find character, due to my schedule when I play its for 5-6 hours at a time consistently. I’ve found around 15 legendarys and 1 set item total in 280 hours. With 5 legendarys and my only set item coming in the first 24 hours after a big patch drops. Last patch I played for 4 hours with one other friend and we found 3 legendary’s and my only set item I’ve ever found. The math on the chances of a 3 legendary’s and a set item dropping in 4 hours play is way to much to say this is just the random chance of the drop rate, put that together with the fact that this has happened on more then one patch and its obvious that something is different after a patch drops, or at least on my account.

  2. “It’s not a bug, but we’re definitely paying close attention to player feedback about Xah’rith’s current difficulty — not just in Inferno, but in all difficulty levels, and at all MP levels too.”

    so you can farm the keys at hell to? >_<

      • He killed my hardcore DH on lvl 46 in nightmare yesterday cuz i didnt expect that much damage out of nowhere… asshole…

        • He smoked my 32 Barb who as decently equipped. I could barely cause any damage and got killed. Long time HC player and first real death in DIII. It sucked but that is what is great about HC. I’ll be ready next time. Happy Hunting!

  3. I’m considering “Xah” is the new kid on the block from act 4, silver spire lvl1.

    I was levelling an alternate monk and was on a public game, normal, for the mantra achievement. After a while, it was only me and a lvl 27 wizard I was carrying through the act 4. Since I always need someone to carry my wizards around because I just can’t play with them…

    Anyway, 2 players on a game, no MP and I found Xah along the way. He’s something like a mallet lord that attacks more frequently. Harder, but doable. If the guy was on silver spire act 2, with lots of morlu spellcasters, then it would be troublesome.

    The mallet lord elite pack I found, however… That was too-nasty-for-normal.

  4. I agree that some of the keywardens are a bit too strong. All but the act one guy. However I don’t think they should be nerfed. I like difficulty spikes sprinkled into the game.

    Let’s say playing any given area in the game you plot the difficulty: Pretty much all your encounter with an elite pack is …idk, 20% harder then the surroundings. The entire game doesn’t deviate from this. How boring is that? What’s the harm of 3 50%’s in the entire game?

  5. Xah’Rith – the Act 3 keywarden – is a bit of an outlier in terms of difficulty compared to the Act 1 and Act 2 keywardens. The Act 4 keywarden is probably the most difficult, but since you need the plan only once I’m fine with that.

    The problem with Xah’Rith is due to his abilities compounding with each other, making him quite difficult – especially for melee.

    He has the Illusionist ability and a really nasty corpse rain that snares you. Guess what happens when all of his illusions cast that corpse rain? Yeah all those rains stack and if you’re caught in it good luck.

    Some ideas to make him more in line with the other keywardens:
    – remove the snare, and/or
    – put a cooldown on the corpse rain, 5+ seconds

    I would rather they leave him in Stonefort, though. Having to hunt through Fields of Misery and Dahlgur Oasis is enough of a hassle already.

  6. I also think the Act 3 key warden is tough, I have to stay far away from him and let the Blizzard/Hydra wear him down. I have ran him at least 10 times on MP2 and no keys have dropped. He did drop a really shitty Dawn the first time I killed him, so there’s that. I got a Danetta’s revenge last night that was so bad that I immediately salvaged it, I took one look at it, that was all I could handle. Oh well, gotta find the bad ones in order to get the good ones sometimes.

  7. He seemed a bit ridiculous when my new barb (HC) met him in A3 normal. I was playing at MP10 and had NO problems with any of the monsters, but his snare + corpse rain nearly killed me, even after I put the diff down to MP0…

    That’s just poorly balanced, imho…

  8. If anything, I found some of the keywardens to be too easy for ranged classes. I killed the Act2 one literally by shooting at him off-screen. The Act3 one was slow as well and it was easy to keep him at a distance.

  9. can’t really tell if people that come up with shit like drop rate gets nerfed are actually that stupid or they are a really good troll =)

  10. Ok, day after patch drops, I do 3 butcher runs with my buddy, in 3 runs we found 3 leg and 1 set, not the best but got an oculus ring and set gloves. Next day I do 5 butcher runs and nothing, this is not random there is something to the drops being much higher right after a patch launches….

  11. After nearly a month off, I came back to try the patch and also found exactly 3 legendaries really quick, what a coincidence. To be honest, anyone thought of a mechanism that ups the chance to find legendaries when you haven’t played for a long time, as to make you play more again?

    Anyway it is nice to see the game keeps improving.

  12. It’s not a question of if the key wardens are hard, it is how much parity exists between them regarding difficulty. There are a couple issues I’ve found in key farming.

    Act 1: fine
    Act 2: finding him in dalghur can be a long experience but the real issue lies in a bug on the warden. When the key warden winds up and you stop him with a blind or stun his AOE attack persists around him causing him to deal damage even though he isn’t moving. This needs to be fixed.

    Act 3: Difficulty on this warden is way over tuned. He’s substantially harder than the rest (not impossible though). The issue is his snares are too powerful. While the damage of the bodies falling is substantial, the whole mechanic of dodging it goes by the wayside for two reasons a) the time from which the AOE of the spell is on the ground to when the bodies fall is too short amd b) the amount of movement speed reduction makes it brutal to try and leave. Couple that with the fact that that ice deals a dot while you try to escape and you can get rocked.

    Act 4: Boss is fine, elite pack density of the act makes it a challenge to get a 5 stack before the warden, this needs to be adjusted.

  13. well, today I played for about 5-6 hours.

    3 legendaries and 1 set item. also got the key of hate.

    I am running MP1 with 113% MF with no NV. I found the set piece in act4 garden lvl 1 with 0 NV.

    I think they have finally nailed the drop rates.

    Now if they were to do another pass on the legendaries and other items. They still lack a little oomph. Not enough chance on hit procs. I almost feel like every legendary/set weapon should have one.

    • and oh ya. I have NEVER had a multi-drop day and I have never had a set piece drop. So I really don’t think it was just me getting lucky. (to be continued of course)

  14. Yeah the act 3/4 key wardens are too hard compared to the rest of the content.

    And about the drop rate – I actually found 3 legendary too right after the patch and then day after found nothing ( and I still played the same amount ) and the same happened to me after 1.0.4 So yeah I’ll have to put my tinfoil hat as well… ( sorry but to many people report the same )

  15. Thank good for this post! I was steamrolling through A3 wuth a twinked HC wizard but I kept on my toes for this Xah’Rith. I would have certainly died if I hadn’t been warned beforehand… Had to drink a potion and retreat a couple of times, he slows AND hits hard.

  16. Although I hate Blizzard and Diablo 3, I have to say this decreased drops are definetely related to RNG (I don’t play D3 but read your words on this issue).

    I also don’t know the patch notes but Blizzard probably increased the drop chance. When this happens, RNG (not random in fact) quickly tries to “normalize” the drops you got in your “total play time”.

    E.G: Before the patch you got 48 legendaries (probably a number between something like 40-60) in 500 hours. With the addition of the newest patch and increased drop rates, RNG concludes that you should have gotten at least 50-75 in your total play time. Then it quickly rewards you with 2 legendaries in a small amount of time. Think it like you got unlucky for a huge amount of time and then RNG smiles on you and gives a lot better loot. Then it normalizes again.

    If Blizzard increases drop rates in the future again, it’ll be the same (for people that played the game A LOT)

    • there is no proof to your theory at all. I’ll concede that they “could” do the drops like that. However, it would be very cpu expensive. When doing math on RNG, you HAVE to keep it simple. Especially with the number of drops that occur. Having to lookup values like time played makes the calculation very expensive.

      What I really think this all comes down to is kill speed. I’m a self found gear person. I just now reached 30k dps (36k with 5 stacks of frenzy) My kill speed has noticeably improved the last week. And wouldn’t you know it, I’m for the very first time starting to see legendaries on a normal basis and I finally saw my first set piece.

      This is absolutely no different than playing the lottery. You increase your chances of winning with the more tickets (or rolls) you buy. The more monsters you kill, the more the odds are of hitting the legendary/set item pool. If you are playing on an MP level that slows you down too much, you are going to feel like you never see drops.

      I really do feel like MP level and the increased drop rate fixes the issues I was having with the game. I have had 4 legendaries and one set piece drop this weekend. 5 items. I also had a legendary drop on wednesday. Before 1.05 I had seen 6 total legendaries since May 15.

  17. The frozen rain of corpses hits hard and slows you to a crawl. If you get caught in it, unless you are on the edge of the effect, you cannot get out of it without an escape skill. And if you are caught in it when your escape skill is on cool down, you are probably going to die.

    I can tank almost everything, but not Xah’Rith. So when I fight Xah’Rith I don’t tank. I stay at range. Xah’Rith is pretty harmless if you can kill him at range. If you cannot fight at range, good luck. You are going to need it.

  18. On the drop rate topic, Blizzard could double the set/legendary rate again and everything dropped for me would still be vendor trash. RNG is RNG, and the set/legendary items are too random. Getting a good one is like having to win the lottery twice: once to get the item to drop in the first place; a second time for the item to not be vendor trash.

    With 1.0.5 I actually see set/legendary items drop once every blue moon, but they are always vendor trash. If I don’t get one that is not vendor trash soon, the positive reinforcement I received with the doubled drop rate — i.e. actually seeing the set/legendary items drop — is going to disappear due to the “ding” always yielding “trash”.

    • Unfortunately, I don’t think they will ever make it so that legendaries/sets drop like they did in D2 and it is wearing me down too. Because of the AH, if you want something you will have to get it there. Chances to find all leg/sets in this game are nil even after 10 years of playing like D2 where you probably found them all except a few (In D3 you have better chances to find them all as I’m sure they don’t have drop tables ridiculous

      I only have 3 purple uniques to find in A1 and there too I think this is getting ridiculous. I’ve run the areas for the last 2 months (~1-2h a day) without ever seeing them. I love the fact that the game is random, but they are a bit too rare for my tastes and the reward being 10 points is not really in line with the effort to get it.

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