A fan pointed out the painfully high Demonic Essence costs for gem upgrades on the PTR, and got a reassuring reply from a Blue tech support.
Yet I do agree that it should be challenging to get the materials yourself, but isn’t this a bit too rough?
Wuluxar: I juust wanted to quickly jump in to thank you for bringing this valid concern up. The Demonic Essence cost connected with gem combining was actually a bug – this will be fixed in a future patch for the PTR. The DE cost will be 0.
A couple of days ago a friend who didn’t have a lot of Demonic Essences stored up from Diablo 3 (and thus copied over to RoS) asked me what I thought about the crazy amount of DEs required to upgrade gems, and that he had stacks of Marquise and no way to upgrade any to Imperial. I hadn’t even noticed the problem since 1) I hadn’t upgraded many gems since the patch changed the prices, and 2) I had huge stacks of DEs in my inventory copied over from D3v (because DEs are account bound and thus I couldn’t sell them off when I liquidated everything else once the RoS beta showed how worthless almost all carried over D3v gear would be).
So I got on just now to compare the DE prices on high level gems… and it’s already fixed! Sometime yesterday or today Blizzard hotfixed the DE cost out of Marquise and higher level gems in Reaper of Souls, though it remains in the cost for gem upgrades up to Marquise. (Not that anyone in RoS will ever bother to upgrade gems below Marquise, since they drop constantly past about level 63.)