The hot topic in the forums today is discussion about a video and hot-to guide on a skill use exploit found in the Diablo III Beta, first posted by Phunkopotamus on the TeamLiquid forums.
The trick is that the final portion of many skill animations can be “canceled” by clicking another skill, midway through the first one. This drops the recovery portion of the animation, and basically chains a second skill right on top of the first, allowing for two hits much more quickly than is otherwise possible.
For instance, say that your Barbarian’s Cleave skill and Bash skill both take 1 second per use. If you were alternating them, it would take you 10 seconds to use each of them five times. By using the animation cancel trick though, the first skill would only take .5 seconds, and then be interrupted by a 1 second Bash. (Or vice versa, if you switched the hotkeys around.) This would allow you to use 5 Cleaves and 5 Bashes in 7.5 seconds, instead of 10. (In this hypothetical example.)
Note that you can not do this with two skills on the LMB and RMB, or with two skills on the keyboard, or with a mouse button skill canceling a keyboard skill. It only works when skill #1 is on the mouse, and #2, the interrupter, is on the keyboard. Thus it only works once, you can’t cancel the 2nd skill with a 3rd one, and you’ll always have the full animation for the 2nd skill.
Is it meant to be, though? No one can say for sure, and there are arguments on both sides of the bug/feature debate. Some players are taking the various limitations on how it works as proof that it’s intentional; that the devs put it in to reward faster fingers and skilful play; the same way you can chain multiple attacks in fighter games by skillful timing of the joystick/buttons. Others players are sure it’s a bug, and that there’s some kind of coding irregularity between how Diablo III processes mouse clicks and keyboard clicks.
Click through to see the cancellation exploit demonstrated in a video, and some more comments on which characters this benefits, and which it doesn’t do much for.
Some characters have better applications than others. I hope that runes change up the animations of certain moves to offer better possibilities. Right now the Barbarian and Monk can make the most use out of the trick.
Cleave cancelled into Frenzy with Dual Wield: If you have fast weapons, your Frenzy comes out and finishes VERY fast, so you can essentially enjoy Frenzy stacks for free.
Any Rage Generator cancelled into Hammer of the Ancients or Weapon Throw: Classic 2for1 application.
Autoattack Cancelled into a Rage Spender: With the “Fundamentals” Passive, your hatred can regenerate as you use your abilities.
Vault into Anything: You can cancel vault mid-animation. Sometimes it screws up and teleports you to the final destination. Sometimes it cuts it short. Useful for a quick PVP dodge probably.
Grenades into Anything. Grenades have a long Recovery Phase. Skip it.
All Spirit Generators into other spirit generators. Best application is Crippling Wave on a Mouse Button since it has the slowest Recovery phase and benefits the most from being cancelled.
Exploding Palm is a great canceller because of its speed.
Dashing Strike into Autoattack or Exploding Palm to cancel the recovery after teleport.
Lashing Tail Kick – Cancel the recovery.
He doesn’t have many uses since most of his attacks don’t come out quick enough to really justify spamming weaveable attacks. I’ve only found 2 good applications.
Zombie Charger cancelled into Poison Frogs or vice versa.
Haunt cancelled into anything- This is actually pretty good. Haunt emits almost immediately as the Startup phase is very short. Most of Haunt’s casting time is on the Recovery Phase. Best I’ve found is Haunt into Firebomb or Haunt into Poison Frogs. Lets you weave your 3 Active haunts into the battlefield as you kill with other moves.
Most of her’s cancellables suck. The spellcasters can’t really make great use of this.
She can cancel Arcane Orb and Twister, but the recovery gains aren’t that great.
The best gain is on Spectral Blades, as shown in the video. This attack has almost no Startup phase, and is entirely Recovery based. So, you can cancel this into whatever. Melee-Sorc FTW.
If I was going to cancel Orb or Twister, I’d cancel into Magic Missile since it wont’ cost anything at higher levels. A basic 2for1.
Also note that this has been reported in the B.net Beta forum, so Blizzard will be aware of it. No blue has yet commented about it.