Developer Journal: Defensive Bonuses and Monster Damage

The first of the three Developer Journals is now available. First up are the DiabloWikipassive changes.

We’re taking a close look at defensive skills vs. incoming monster damage in 1.0.5. We’re going to be changing a few defensive skills for each class, including some direct nerfs to skills like wizard Energy Armor and barbarian War Cry – Impunity. However, we’re also reducing incoming damage in Inferno, so players will actually come out ahead. In short the plan is:

  1. Reduce the effectiveness of select defensive skills
  2. Reduce monster damage by more than the mitigation lost by these skills
  3. Putting both changes together, players actually take less damage than before

Why We’re Making This Change

Why are we doing this? The reason is not complicated. High incoming monster damage combined with extremely powerful defensive skills make those skills and runes feel mandatory. Our goal is that by simultaneously nerfing defensive skills and reducing incoming damage, players who choose to continue using these defensive skills will take less damage overall, and players who choose to forego these “mandatory” skills will find themselves more survivable than what you would currently experience on live. Overall, these changes result in a huge buff in the player’s favor. Just how mandatory are these skills?

As it is now, Energy Armor is used by 83% of level 60 wizards. Also, take a look at the distribution of the War Cry skill on level 60 barbarians:

In developing Diablo III, defensive skills were made potent because we wanted to ensure they would be attractive. In some regards, we were too successful. Many players feel compelled to grab every defensive skill available to them, which can take away from some flexibility in using different build options.

This also creates problems for a class that may have less defensive skills. When one class has massive defensive buffs, abilities like Mortar, Arcane Enchanted, and Plagued can feel pretty modest, and at the same time feel overly punishing to a class without them. We’re all in favor of people being able to build their character for survivability, but there needs to be a balance.

How Much is Enough?

So the stated goal is to make sure the combination of the defensive skill nerf combined with the reduced damage from monsters still results in an overall buff to players. Let’s bust out some math! As previously mentioned, Energy Armor is one of the skills being impacted. The exact change is the base armor provided by Energy Armor is being reduced from 65% to 35%, and the resistance increase provided by Prismatic Armor is being reduced from 40% to 25%.

The benefit of these skills is greater at higher levels of Armor and Resistance, so let’s assume very high numbers of each. Suppose a wizard has 6000 Armor and 800 Resist before Prismatic Armor. Assuming a level 63 enemy:

  • In 1.0.4 this translates to 9900 Armor (75.86% mitigation) and 1120 Resist (78.05% mitigation) with Prismatic Armor, for a total mitigation of 94.70%
  • In 1.0.5 this will be 8100 Armor (72.00% mitigation) and 1000 Resist (76.05% mitigation) with Prismatic Armor, for a total mitigation of 93.29%
  • If a monster hits for 50,000 damage, then the damage taken by the wizard will go from 2650 damage to 3355 damage.
    This means incoming damage would have to be less than 79% of the current value (2650 /3355) in order for it to feel the same after 1.0.5.

Based on this it’s clear that in order to ensure 1.0.5 is a net buff for all wizards we’d have to reduce incoming monster damage by at least 21%. Prismatic Armor still provides a significant boost to survivability, but it should no longer feel mandatory, opening up other options such as a more offensively minded Storm Armor (which is getting buffed in 1.0.5).

Let’s do another example with the barbarian. War Cry Impunity is being reduced from 50% resistances to 20%.

  • A barbarian with 800 resist before War Cry against a level 63 enemy translates to 1200 Resist (79.21% mitigation) with Impunity in 1.0.4
  • In 1.0.5 this will be 960 Resist (75.29% mitigation) with Impunity
  • If a monster hits for 20,000 damage after Armor, then the damage taken by the Barbarian will go from 4158 damage to 4942 damage
  • This means incoming damage would have to be less than 84% of the current value on live (4158/4942) in order for the game to feel the same.

As it happens, we’re going to reduce all damage in Inferno by at least 25%. Players who want to be the toughest damage mitigators in the game can continue to use defensive skills and get a sizable bonus for doing so. Players who want to use other skills can do so without sacrificing such a massive amount of survivability. Class builds that don’t currently use heavy mitigation skills such as Smoke Screen-focused demon hunters or Gargantuan-tanking witch doctors will find their survivability has gone up considerably due to reduced incoming monster damage.

Class by Class

Here’s a quick rundown of what’s changing in terms of defensive skills in 1.0.5.


  • War Cry – Impunity: Bonus resistance reduced from 50% to 20%.
  • Leap – Iron Impact: We’re adjusting the design of this skill. Rather than providing 300% armor for 4 seconds, it’s going to provide 100% armor per target hit for 3 seconds. So if you don’t hit any targets, you won’t get any armor. If you hit 5 targets, you’ll actually get 500% armor. We are making this change because the intended fantasy of Iron Impact is a barbarian who leaps into the thick of battle and is super tough. The way the skill plays out on live it is essentially an Ignore Pain that can also move you. For the most part it is better than Ignore Pain, making not only Ignore Pain unattractive, but also the other Leap Attack runes. In 1.0.5, if you want a defensive cooldown – grab Ignore Pain. If you want to leap into the thick of battle and be super tough, take Iron Impact.

Demon Hunter:

  • In the case of the demon hunter, the class is a bit too binary. If you’re playing a glass cannon Smoke Screen build, then you’re invulnerable most of the time, and when you make a mistake, you die instantly. If you’re using Shadow Power – Gloom with a legacy Natalya’s set, then you have near constant uptime of 65% damage reduction, but if you’re not using the legacy Natalya’s set, Shadow Power – Gloom is a luxury.
  • Independent of the general defensive skill nerf, we had already decided to buff Shadow Power to last longer. The primary purpose of Shadow Power is to give you a short window of time during which you can unload some damage to recoup some Life. Unfortunately the 3-second duration makes this awkward to use. We are changing Shadow Power from 20% Life Steal for 3 seconds to 15% Life Steal for 5 seconds. This should be a modest buff to the skill as well as making it a lot more pleasant to use. All of the runes are scheduled to see similar changes, such as Blood Moon going from 30% Life Steal for 3 seconds to 25% Life Steal for 5 seconds. Each rune effect is slightly smaller, but for 5 seconds instead of 3 seconds, resulting in an overall buff over the duration of the effect.
  • Taking into account the across-the-board nerf to defensive skills, Gloom will become 35% damage reduction for 5 seconds.
  • This developer journal is focused primarily on defensive skill changes, but because the change to Gloom is significant, I want to mention that we are looking at concrete mechanics changes to the demon hunter to introduce new play styles. Many players have mentioned that outside of Gloom, demon hunters seem to lack defensive options. More importantly, demon hunters would like some different play styles, and we agree! Here are a few changes we are adding for demon hunters in 1.0.5 to open up new ways to play:
  • We are adjusting some runes and passives to provide ways to increase survivability that scales with your Life, Armor, and resistances.
  • We are changing the Spider, Boar, and Wolf companion pets to be actual pets that can tank for you like a Gargantuan or Zombie Dog.
  • We are putting a short cooldown on Sentry, but you can have two out simultaneously. On top of that, the Custom Engineering passive will let you have a third Sentry turret! This opens up a whole new play style for the Demon Hunter of establishing a “nest” that you can draw enemies into.


  • The strongest monk defensive skill is One With Everything. We’ve mentioned it before and it bears repeating – this is something we would like to fix someday, but we’re going to take our time. Changes to One With Everything heavily impact existing monk gear. We still plan on addressing this in the future but will do so in a way that does not invalidate the gear monks have invested in.
  • Resolve: Damage reduction reduced from 25% to 20%.
    Seize the Initiative: Changed to grant 50% of your Dexterity as Armor. This will result in anywhere from 750 to 1250 armor for most monks (depending on your Dex) which is comparable to the mitigation lost by other classes. The reduction to Resolve and Seize the Initiative should mean if you want to be a “super-tanky monk” you can still take all three defensive skills, but it should be a lot easier to pick some other passives without feeling like you’re going to blow up at the first Elite pack you encounter.

Witch Doctor:

  • Jungle Fortitude is being reduced from 20% to 15% damage reduction.


  • Energy Armor: Armor increase reduced from 65% to 35%.
  • Energy Armor – Prismatic Armor: Resistance increase reduced from 40% to 25%.
  • It’s worth noting that we’re going to provide additional alternative defensive options for the wizard such as adding flat melee damage reduction to Ice Armor and creating a Familiar variant that provides passive Life regeneration.

Why You Nerf Inferno?

Alright, so let’s recap. Defensive skills are taking a hit in 1.0.5, but incoming damage from monsters is also being reduced. Taken together, the changes mean Inferno is going to be easier. For some of you this is totally cool; you welcome an easier Inferno because it’s about efficiency and not difficulty. For others, you may be skeptical but you’re at least intrigued at the possibility that you’ll be able to drop some defensive skills and discover some new builds. However, for others, Inferno is currently already too easy. Maybe you don’t use any defensive skills; maybe your gear is so good you dropped War Cry – Impunity weeks ago. For this last group you may be wondering “Another Inferno nerf? But I crave more of a challenge, not less!”

For people in this last group, 1.0.5 is bringing the “Monster Power” system. The details of this system will be outlined as we get closer to 1.0.5, but in short this is a callback to the Diablo II ”players X” option, allowing you to increase the level of challenge for increased rewards. Our hope is that we can make Inferno easier while simultaneously providing new ways for top-end players to gauge their increasing power in tangible ways.

Related to this article
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    87 thoughts on “Developer Journal: Defensive Bonuses and Monster Damage

    1. This sounds very intriguing. I was especially pleased at the end when they hinted at monster power providing more reward for doing it too. This way people can ease into Inferno a bit, and then gradually up the challenge as they go along. Also, it should encourage running more different acts if you can say go into Act 1 and change the difficulty to Act 2 or 3 levels, and in the other levels as well.

      With PVP out hopefully by the end of the year, this game continues to evolve more and more from a good game to a great game. There are still plenty of faults, but I personally feel a bit more comfortable knowing the developers seem keen to work on these issues.

      • You’d think this was obvious enough for those complaining about Inferno nerfs…

        The game is becoming bloody amazing, with every patch. All the whiners/haters must be feeling sad these days.

        • No. Game isn’t becoming. Like 1.0.4 with GW2, 1.0.5 is out only to divert attention from TL2. Patch 1.0.4 just make game easy but the most important issues still there.I see you acting in these blog like a desperate fanboy.

          Diablo 3 is just a game of medium quality.

          • > Diablo 3 is just a game of medium quality.

            Or, perhaps, different people have different tastes? :O

            Personally I like D3 and the improvements, I also pre-ordered TL2. But I’m not sure what happens if both are installed simultaneously on the same PC, will it blow up? 😐

            • its called burnt out- get real. you don’t want to have to try as hard as you fuckign can every time u log into the game even to farm items to get further!! thats outrageous! it was fun at first of course! People complaining are ridiculous and if they are not currently enjoying d3 and saying it isn’t better than it was i feel sorry for you. in the end i bet we will get a more FUN GAMEEE (not necesarilly easy mode as the monster power intends to be). CHANGE IS BAD OH MY GEED

          • Do you honestly believe that the only reason Blizzard is releasing patches for Diablo 3 is so they can strategically time them to steal the thunder from other games? And you’re accusing other people of abandoning reason to argue their personal biases?

        • With every patch they are adding things from D2 that they never should have excluded in the first place. Not that I’m complaining, I’m glad they’re slowly pulling their heads out of their asses.

        • I think you mean, “This game is becoming more like Diablo 2.”

          Not that there’s something wrong with that, I loved D2. However, makes you wonder what they were thinking releasing a game with so few features and a horrible loot system. Makes me wonder if all this stuff was cut and planned for full price expansions in 1-2 years, but with the awful reception this game has received they are forced to push it out so soon after release.

          This also doesn’t fix the problem that in 300 hours I’ve found no set items and only 7 uniques, none of which could be sold for more than 15-20K on the AH because they were such trash. But hey, I don’t play Diablo games to find cool and diverse loot…

    2. Great changes. While they’re at it, I hope they give the Templar the same treatment they’re giving the Gargantuan and Zombie Dogs, i.e. making him able to hold aggro and actually tank like he’s supposed to.

    3. I like these changes. The damage was too spiky in most cases, and I hope that this strongly reduces that aspect of the game. I’m not really keen on across-the-board nerfs because it devalues the content, but anything that stops freshfaced characters from being two-shotted in Act 2 is okay by me.

      In any case, I’m looking forward to trying out builds that are about things other than tank-and-spank or “use one escape skill a lot.” The added benefits to CC should really help out, and it looks like they are focusing a lot on changing class skills to affect playstyle, which should hopefully make more skills usable.

    4. D3 balance philosophy #4 – Too much of a good thing needs to be nerfed (even if we never really tested it).

      Increased attack speed and trail of cinders got the pointy end of that stick.

    5. > We are changing the Spider, Boar, and Wolf companion pets to be actual pets that can tank for you like a Gargantuan or Zombie Dog. <

      Hunter pets sound great. How exactly do WD pets work? Can they be controlled in any way, do they have unique skills, and can they be activated by the player? WoW-style pet controls may be too much to hope for, I guess it works more like a Follower?

      • They cannot be directly controlled, so quite similar to followers, yes. Runes can give them certain special abilities, but only one ability at the time I believe.

    6. “.. but in short this is a callback to the Diablo II ”players X” option, allowing you to increase the level of challenge for increased rewards.”

      Guess this kinda answers the question I had. Nice.

    7. Sounds like a good set of changes.

      I believe /players 8 increased monster hit points and drop rates to the same level as an 8 player game. Did the monster *damage* scale up as well? I don’t think so, but I can’t remember for sure.

      I’m wondering if the reason it is mentioned at the end is that not only will monster health/treasure scale up but also incoming damage. Thus, playing at Monster Power levels will be the same or more incoming damage as today in 1.04.

      • No, players 8 didn’t do anything AFAIR in D2 with regards to damage. It just look longer to beat things down, so the changes of you taking mroe total damage was higher than on players 1

        There seems to be a good amount of reasoning and rationale going into these patch decisions. I heartily approve of the concept of players controlling their own difficulty. I wonder if this will bring more people to the hardcore fold?

      • /players x Increased the damage of enemies in Diablo 2, but only slightly. The increase in HP was much more noticeable.

    8. So, many of these skills are still important to have, and just as many people will use them. Maybe they should instead consider why people are not using some abilities/runes and instead buff those. Many runes are just plain useless.

      • Yeah like the rune that makes your gargantuan last for 15 seconds without any real special benefit… I mean really – you still haven’t fixed that? :F

    9. (copying from my forum post)

      Gonna be interesting to see if the players x command is allowed in MP private games. Would seem kind of counter-productive to encourage people to MF solo again.

      I mean, as far as I know, there is no added benefit for playing with 3 or 4 people, other than maybe faster killing speed. You certainly don’t get better drops (scutums FTW!), and you don’t get more XP or MF, or anything really. So if there will be buffs added to the players x command, I sure hope they are implemented for MP games as well.

      • Good point. Does this mean when grouping with another player there is an increase in drops, or is it only when you /players 2?

        • Let’s hope it applies to other MP games as well, and isn’t solely tied to the players x command. I like playing with multiple people, but if it’s less efficient again, like it was with shared MF, I’ll end up soloing again.

      • I too am very concerned with what effect this will have on MP games. It seems like it will kill MP games because it will be miserable to join a game and find out that its at lvl 10 difficulty while ur only geared for lvl 1 and so on and so forth in a billion different varieties. This problem would then force people into playing single player or with their ‘friends’ (none of mine play anymore not even 1.04 could bring them back).

        • My concern was more directed at private games where everyone agrees to a higher “player x” difficulty. Unless this same consensus can be attained in a pub (highly unlikely), I think it should be disabled altogether. Another option would be to fragment out Inferno games, based on the player x difficulty, but that would require some serious infrastructure, that Blizz would never do.

    10. So defensive skills are nerfed, and *inferno* damage is reduces.

      But what about *hell* damage? I have a DH in A2H now, struggling somewhat to get used to higher monster damage. It will be hard enough when they nerf trail of cinders. If the defensive skills all get nerfed, and damage is reduced only in inferno, characters in lower difficulty levels will see the game get a good bit harder.

      To make this work, I think they need to reduce all of the incoming damage, not just the damage in inferno.

      • You missed the: “As it happens, we’re going to reduce all damage in Inferno by at least 25%.” It is in the paragraph right above the class by class section.

        • @herfy: he is talking about hell not inferno read what he said again.

          @brett turner: you won’t have any problem because DH defensive skills are getting buffed, not nerfed, as this class way way too squishy. So it will be even easier after the patch for you.

      • As mentioned DHs are getting other buffs. And other classes were never that heavily dependent on these skills in Hell to begin with.

    11. The changes look pretty good but until itemization is fixed it still won’t bring me back to the game. They’ve got their priorities out of order.

      • I feel like you. As much as I like running Act 1 & 2 for those unique purples bosses (hey I want to get all achievements) and hoping to see something worthy drop in the see of yellow items with 5 NV stacks, I can’t help but feel that this stuff is all good but doesn’t fix the main issues.

        I don’t want to spend 10 years of my life 8h a day playing to hope to find all the damn frigging blacksmith (only 4 with one dupe), jeweler books (none), majority of set pieces (0, nada) and legendary items (6 total, all crappy).

        Same goes with Paragon Levels. At this rhythm it is going to take me 10 years to get one of the 5 chars to lvl 100 so to hell with diversity since if I want to get cool stuff with increased MF/GF (wink AH) I need to play only one char until it reaches high enough levels (> 50).

    12. It would be very very simple to allow NV to stack an additional time for each extra person in a game. So if you’re farming solo, you can only have 5 stacks, but if you’ve got 3 other buddies in the game it stacks to 8.

      • ^ wow thats actually an elegant solution. MP has gotten better now that monster dmg doesn’t scale and the scaling of health has been reduces, allowing for faster farming. Beyond that there isn’t really a good reason to party, but adding additional stacks would be excellent.

      • Unlike what the guys above me are saying, I think this is a terrible idea. Why would you want to feel like you are always forced to play in a multiplayer game over a single player game just for the extra stacks?

        • As it stands now, there is absolutely no incentive to play with a group. In D2, you could farm solo and have an easier time with less dmg taken and less total drops, or you could group up and items would drop like pinata candy but the monsters would be considerably harder. In D3, an online only multiplayer game, you are literally punished for grouping up. You could still farm solo effectively, but if you wanted some more challenge/reward, you could group up and get 15% more xp, MF, and GF. It’s not an overwhelming bonus, but it’s enough to bring back the multiplayer experience we so loved in D2.

      • Since loot from Normal to Hell difficulty is laughable, too, I’d like to see valor stacks right from the beginning (level 1). Kill 5 elite packs, and you get guaranteed rares from alle following elites/bosses through all difficulties.

        • I agree completely. I like to enjoy the journey on the way to Inferno rather than just rushing to 60. Seems like Blizzard said they wanted us to play the entire game and not just skip tons of content & rush. So why not let us get stacks and find good low level uniques/rares on the way to 60. Can’t think of a good reason not to.

        • Having NV stacks from the get go would only discourage players from experimenting with different skills and runes as they level. I hope they keep Nephalem Valor restricted to level 60’s. It would really suck to level up and get some great new skill or rune you have been interested in knowing that in order to use it you have to give up 75% magic find, gold find, and experience.

    13. The original plan of the Wilson team to introduce an ultra-hard mode with “Inferno” may thus be well regarded as a failure. The “loser guy” was right – again. 😉

    14. If they asked me earlier I had a better and simpler idea for all these Inferno changes since release: remove Inferno completely, reduce all skills of classes by 33%, remove all ilvl 61 items and above from the game, EXCEPT jewels and legendaries, and enable them to have a chance to drop in hell.

      Hell would be just as hard as inferno is now, legendaries would actually be good and Blizzard could start developing or finishing more content like they are adding now, months ago.

        • It never made any sense. Would be great if it could be cut but it’d be too massive a surgery to do that at this point.

          • Just dump Hell, and make Normal – Nightmare – Inferno (with Inferno being a name unique to Diablo 3 (instead of Hell)).

    15. As someone who plays primarily as a DH, this is sounding really, really good. This is basically a HUGE survivability buff for DHs. I do have to say I’m not crazy about the change to Gloom, though. At least the way that I use it, it functioned mainly as an “Oh Sh*t!” button. I understand the less incoming damage bit and all that, but still: 65% DR = temporary tank; 35% DR- not so much. In the situations I’m talking about the time span makes little to no difference. BUT… overall, it’s well worth losing that when you look at the other changes. Sentry now sounds incredible, plus it makes a previously almost useless passive much better to boot. Honestly, while I was very happy with 1.0.4, I did not change a single skill when it went live (I was already using most of the ones that got buffed). There is absolutely no question that Sentry will be on my skill bar at least every once in a while now, if not permanently. I love setting traps! If it’s as good as it sounds, Caltrops + Spike Trap (which I like, but rarely use now) + Sentry = way too much damn fun to pass up.

    16. Sorry Blizzard, but your logic is incredibly flawed here. 90% of barbarians can be using warcry, but that doesn’t mean it’s necessary. Sure, when people are undergeared, sacrificing damage for defense makes content doable, but that’s not the only reason to use a skill like this. One of the core ideas to consider when creating a build is [b]you can only use 1 ability at a time[]. That means that having bash and frenzy at the same time is silly, because you’re always wasting a skill slot. Having bash and hammer of the ancients isn’t silly because while you can only use 1 at a time, hammer is stronger but cannot be used continuously without fury. Here, you spend 2 skill slots to gain higher damage than using only bash.

      What does this have to do with warcry and other defensive skills? They are buffs with durations. One way to make a build is to give yourself 4-5 skills that are either long lasting, long cooldown or spawn a persistent effect, then to give yourself 1-2 attacks, probably a generator and a spender. Warcry gives a buff that you can maintain 100% of the time, and it actually generates fury, making the start of a fight less dangerous. Someone can easily have wrath of the berserker, battle rage, a generator and a spender and still have room for 2 skills. Taking earthquake and ancients may make it hard to dump everything because of the total fury costs, so taking a defensive fury generator or something for mobility makes sense, and this is why warcry is so popular.

      Honestly, there are only like 25 skills on average, and they go into 6 slots. You can’t expect every skill to have 33% usage when taking into account the point I made. For example, my current witch doctor setup has 2 pets, spirit walk, an 8 second dot, a 20 second damaging effect, and my primary attack. I’m not going to take both poison dart and firebomb to have aoe and single target options when I can instead take 2 spells that do a lot more damage per cast and spam a decent aoe while they do their total effect. To explain it further:

      Vs 3 targets over 20 seconds
      Locust swarm: 360% damage, 2 cast, multiply by 3 = 2160%
      Manitou – 1667% damage, 1 cast
      Rain of toads: 130% damage, 17 casts, multiply by 3 = 6630%
      Total: 10457

      Vs 1 target over 20 seconds
      Locust swarm: 360% damage, 2 cast = 720%
      Manitou – 1667% damage, 1 cast
      Rain of toads: 130% damage, 17 casts = 2210%
      Total: 4597

      Vs 1 target over 20 seconds
      Splinters – 180% damage, 20 casts = 3600%

      Vs 3 targets over 20 seconds
      Roll the bones – 110% damage, estimated 1.5 hits per target, 20 casts, multiply by 3 = 9900%

      As you can see, splinters beats rain of toads single target, and roll the bones beats rain of toads for 3 targets with even a low estimated number of hits, but adding in manitou lets rain of toads win against single target while roll the bones adds nothing, and add locust swarm brings it closer to roll the bones, while splinters does nothing. Even though locust swarm isn’t amazing vs single target, and manitou isn’t that great in aoe, both are higher damage-per-cast in their worst-case scenario than any of the 4 primary attacks (except for extreme aoe situations where manitou can lose out). Having the ability to overlap these 3 effects is what makes a build good, and that’s why buffs are more likely to be in a build than any attack.

      There isn’t nearly as much significance in the choice of bash vs frenzy vs hammer of the ancients…. as there is in choosing whirlwind vs warcry when you already have a fury dump.

    17. It’s an online-only game, of course there’s INCENTIVE to play multiplayer. They’ve already said single player and multiplayer won’t be equal. The issue is, single player is still a bit better. I play a tanky witch doctor with only 19k dps, and usually I kill faster alone than in parties. It seems like everyone who joins my games has less dps and far less survivability. I still play MP cuz I find it less boresome, but I’m totally for buffing the MF in multiplayer.

    18. OK, but aren’t there still a lot of non-DH characters who are going to find hell a lot harder?

      These changes are great for inferno, but not so good at difficulty levels *before* inferno.

    19. Don’t quite know what to make of this:

      Personally I’m all for build diversity, but on the same token I’m not comfortable with a lesser challenge either. Seems to me the game in it’s present state has induced a Darwinian selection\cutdown (read: survival of the fittest) relative to what builds\skills are and are not viable in the present end game.

      I don’t remember this being the case in Diablo 2 LoD. Okay, fine … some builds were better then others depending on where you where running at the time (e.g. Poison\Lightning Javazon running the Arcane Sanctuary). Players use defensive skills because they work! Now the developers have decided Inferno is simply too hard and both mob damage and certain (presently very effective) defensive skills require a downward adjustment?

      On the positive side, I like the coming ‘monster power’ (read: players 8) system. This way folks running solo can have their butts kicked to their heart’s content if that’s what floats their boat. Have to wonder if the quality\amount of drops would correspondingly increase as well with this system.

      Bottom line: Diablo III itemization (loot, mob damage, player offensive\defensive skills) is still very much in flux. Pity these changes couldn’t have been more proactive in nature.

    20. Ahh … changes to the mitigation skills … only 2 to 3 balancing-patches left when they’ll finally admit that it was an error changing resistances from a capped value (D2) to an incremental curve (Sacred) … ^^

    21. I wonder what their response will be when everyone who had that same “mandatory” damage mitigation skill on their character changes now to that same “mandatory” damage increase skill. This isn’t promoting build diversity it’s simply reshuffling which build is now going to be the new mandatory build after this second inferno damage nerf patch. Players /8 I used it in D2 to increase the amount of experience I gained when clearing the cow level with my nova sorc. I don’t recall any of my friends actually using players /8 to make the game “more fun” and I don’t anticipate it having that effect here. I would have preferred to see more legendary changes maybe new creative legendary additions. It is going to be the legendary items with creative affixes that promote build diversity nothing else is going to work.

    22. I’m not one of the game haters, but here is what I wish to be in the game:

      – Mark items that were sold in the auction house.
      – A “checkbox” that disallows use of the Auction House for that character and the “Marked” items.

      Sometimes the Auction House is just WAAAAY too tempting. This way too, you can actually have an achievement that your character never used an item bought from the auction house. Dunno about the gold though. :/ Guess it’s a lost cause.

      Sorry if you think this is a little off topic.

    23. Woohoo can’t wait for 1.0.5. 25% less damage, i’ll finally be able to progress beyond act2 in inferno.

      <3 you Blizz

    24. Monk changes are horrible again! Address the fact that 90% of monks are using; immunity, blind, heal, mantra of choice and sweeping winds! There is no choice, I’ve tried other options and this route is the best by so far that its not even funny!

      • True. And sadly, the heal itself is nearly worthless on 60 as it is a fixed number, and we only take the skill for the +dmg-buff-rune

    25. Not happy with monk (lack of) changes at all. OWE is not our fault so how about you buff the other passives to be worth picking instead?

    26. nerf defensive monk pssives in order to allow taking offensive ones? Sound great. Too bad that there are no offensive ones like barbs ‘Ruthless’ or ‘Weapons Master’…

    27. Give Monks better Offensive skills, for Christ sake. I haven’t played my monk in months because Thunderclap Cyclone spam is getting SO boring. Wave of Light, LTK, Mystic Ally, Mantra of Retribution, most other Mantra runes, WotHF, tempest rush, cyclone strike… and many others all need seriously changes not to their damage, but their mechanics.

      • Agree. Also it seems that with every patch Blizzard wants to remind me that I should not play a monk and I should play a WW/Sprint Barb. I do not understand where they get their idea from. Besides, balancing skills before getting the itemization and drops right is a risk IMO.

    28. I think that people which thinks that this is a good patch are crazy. At 1.0.3 my main was a barb with Frenzy, Revenge, WotB and Overpower, Leap and Warcry. After 1.0.4 Overcome became useless, no longer providing me the survability I did need at Act III, but at least was replaced by Rend: more fragile, but at least you can kill faster. Now Leap is useless and Warcry barely usefull, making the character more gear dependant in an age in which any significative improve on my gear demands tens of millions -in a economy imploding due the lack of middle ground items and players-.

      The changes doesn’t affect the nado-barbs, which seems almost the only build those days, whereas other viable builds as the hammer-anvil or leap-overpower users are punished to death. Not to mentions also that barbs will probably be useless in PvP after those huge nerfs in their deffensive skills. Sorry boys, I didn’t touch the game in 10 days -the competition is too strong- cy in the expansion, I had enougth…

    29. I have not logged in weeks, my brother and other friends in months.

      Nobody I know wants to play a game that requires ungodly amounts of time to find great items on your own. I refuse to buy them. The object of the diablo series is to find them on your own, and have fun when you do find something good.

      I still feel that without the the AH we would have had reasonable drop rates and this whole fiasco would have been avoided. People would be playing, logging in and finding items that keeps their interest up.

      • Itemization is essentially broken in this game so with or without AH the same problems would still exists.

    30. When I saw these two changes, I couldn’t help but remember back to my beloved D2 Valkyrie, the single best tank in the game when you got her level high enough. For the second change, I thought of the fun times with my D2 Trapsin. 3 Sentries out plus the other traps will start to feel like the old days…

      “We are changing the Spider, Boar, and Wolf companion pets to be actual pets that can tank for you like a Gargantuan or Zombie Dog.”

      “We are putting a short cooldown on Sentry, but you can have two out simultaneously. On top of that, the Custom Engineering passive will let you have a third Sentry turret! This opens up a whole new play style for the Demon Hunter of establishing a “nest” that you can draw enemies into.”

    31. Even I don’t play anymore, I keep track of the new changes, but as long as my item upgrades will be ‘oh this one has 7 more resist all than my current item’, I don’t see myself returning to this game.

      I have now played Dark Souls for 96h of which every single one was pure enjoyement, and will proceed into NG+. I will also roll at least 3 new characters. I would recommend this game to anyone, it would be such a shame if it didn’t sell well on PC.

      Anyways, in a month we will have Dishonored, soon there’s going to be BL2, X-Com and I have Darksiders 2 sitting on my shelf.

      D3 needs complete itemisation re-design, PvP content, and some damn ladder system. Introduction of paragon lvs just showed that current Blizz team simply don’t get it. There’s no point in having race to lvl 100 if there’s no ladder. In the end, 3rd party sites had to provide this, and in few patches blizz will be like ‘and we realised that the ladder system would be a great for the current game so here you are’, and fanboys will be like ‘oh blizz the best, they get it, they know what we want’

      • Same here. So f***g sad after 7+ years of waiting, the game is done for me just after, what, 5 month? Epic fail.

    32. >We are changing the Spider, Boar, and Wolf companion pets to be actual pets that can tank for you like a Gargantuan or Zombie Dog.
      This seems such a core change to the class that it should require extensive testing before consideration. I somehow feel they haven’t done extensive testing to see what the effects are. Pretty sure almost every demon hunter will start using one of these.
      Any change to One With Everything will probably have some sort of backlash since almost every monk has more than one item slot riding on it.

    33. Think the first quest in act 1 normal (Rumsford(?)) should be nerfed first, since I have been trying for 2 weeks now to get him dead in 15 seconds so I can continue the game, but he just is too strong for me. Why they nerf inferno if casual newcomers to diablo cant even get there???

    34. “In developing Diablo III, defensive skills were made potent because we wanted to ensure they would be attractive. In some regards, we were too successful. Many players feel compelled to grab every defensive skill available to them, which can take away from some flexibility in using different build options.”

      That’s marketing! This is how it’s done, kids. Blizzard doesn’t fail – instead they often just prove ‘too successful’ for their own good. Beyond that, in regards to causality, the above official statement just borders idiocy on so many fronts, it isn’t funny anymore.

    35. Oh, only one spell getting nerfed to WIZARDs, thats nice. Only one scratch to my favourite class, thats what I call luck! The whole change is a step forward more for players with offensive builds than the defensive ones…

    36. man, this is awesome. patch after patch this game is getting SO much better. Pets for DH and multiple turrets?! I’m already drooling!

    37. Short version > ” let’s make you even more frail so that you buy even MORE from AH – make you dependent on it considering farming will be made almost useless” -_-
      Because let’s be serious – have any one of you EVER heard from a known person to EVER find any set items? 1…or…2? because one can buy entire sets for milions on AH you know -_- why bother farming anymore when we have an offer you will be forced to accept -_-

      I am just…rly sick of these Blizzard shenanigans !!!!!!

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