Diablo 3 Gameplay and Auction House Panel

Blizzcon 2011 Gameplay and Auction Panel
Jay works the crowd

I semi-live blogged this panel. As soon as it was over I spent another hour fixing up the transcript and inserting links and other useful infos. Read the below for full coverage of the panel, plus some analysis of the comments and new info in it. This was an info-packed panel and it included new info about Achievements, Crafting, items in Diablo III, the Auction House, Monsters, recent balance changes to all classes, recent improvements to passive skills, higher difficulty levels, changes based on beta tester feedback, and more.



Jason Bender describes them. There are tons of Achievements in the game. Lots of them, for good and bad. High and low. Everyone earned one just be attending Blizzcon 2011! Achievements are mainly tied to your banner. They add more decoration options (color, sigal, etc) as well as increasing the size and various other displays.

Jason then described how the DiabloWikiStone of Recall works, and how players can use their Banner to jump right to the location of any other player in the game. Also talked about the DiabloWikiCauldron of Jordan and DiabloWikiCube of the Nephalem are detailed. Which I’m not writing here since we’ve known the for a while and you can read about them in the wiki.

Click through for the videos and  much, much more.


Andrew Chambers spoke about Crafting.

D2 items came form buying from vendors or were found from monsters. When you found a better item in D2, you could try to trade an item or sell it to an NPC. Gold could be used to Gambling. But lots of players didn’t like gambling (and since nothing in D3 can be there if noobs can’t understand it instantly, that had to go) so they horded gold or found no use for it.

D3 improvements to the item life cycle. The Mystic Artisan provides item enhancements. Can add things like gold find, magic find, attribute boosts, and resource regeneration. Enhancements are semi-random. You know you’ll get say, increased Hatred regeneration from a given enchantment, but there’s a variable range of benefits that you’ll have to work to score at the top end of. While they start off small, there are much more powerful enhancements available in the end game.

Aberrant Builds. The Mystic’s enhancements can enable players to do odd builds as they build up bonuses stats on non-typical items. The example was a Demon Hunter using an axe/shield, since you won’t often see a DH with one-handed weapons.

How would this example work? Almost all of the DiabloWikiDemon Hunter skills require a bow or xbow, but of the ones that can be used with a melee weapon, DiabloWikiGrenades and DiabloWikiSpike Trap are Hatred generators, while DiabloWikiChakram and DiabloWikiFan of Knives are Fury spenders. The rest are utility skills that spend DiabloWikiDiscipline. So in theory you’d need some increased Hatred regen (it regens very slowly on the redesigned DH, compared to the quite quick pace in the beta build) since just using Grenades and Spike Trap wouldn’t be sufficient to keep up with your costs.)

They also revealed that the Mystic levels up through ten levels, which matches info found from data-mining. Previously Artisans only had 5 levels, so clearly more time and expense will be required to max them out.

The DiabloWikiJeweler. All things gem-related. He can combine DiabloWikigems to upgrade their rank. He can also add DiabloWikisockets to items, as well as remove gems from sockets. As the Jeweler levels up, he can combine higher level gems. All artisans require DiabloWikiPages of Training to upgrade (plus gold and various materials), so you’ll have to decide which one you want to level up first, or do a lot of page farming. (But ultimately you’ll have all of them to max level, since Artisans are by account, not by character.)

The DiabloWikiBlacksmith. He can craft all types of weapons and armor. Including DiabloWikilegendary items and DiabloWikiSet Items. Which he will learn from DiabloWikiplans (recipe scrolls) you find and take to him. (All plans found in the Beta are “recipe already known” by the Blacksmith, but there will be rare ones in the full game that don’t just come with the Artisan’s level up learning.

Diablo III Item Lifecycle.

Items can come from drops, buying from merchants, crafting, or buying from the auction house. Can sell items in the AH, enhance it, sell for gold, salvage it, twink, give to friends. Many more options than in D2. They showed some slides to emphasize the variety of ways players can obtain and dispose of items in D3, but it was pretty much themed for noobs or WoW players, so I won’t spend much time on it here.

Diablo III PvP

The DiabloWikiArena debuted last year at Blizzcon. This year’s version is upgraded. (We’ll be posting an article on it later tonight.) The new version is team death match. Their biggest feedback from the Arena last year was that players didn’t like waiting around for rounds to end (after they died). Now when you die you respawn in three seconds, and get right back into the battle. The winning team is the one that lands the most kills in 10 minutes. (The demo goes 15m at Blizzcon, but apparently that’s 5m longer than we’ll be doing in the real game.)

There’s no item swapping or skill swapping during Arena games, so players need to set their gear and skills before a battle, and you’ll need a variety of abilities to counter all kinds of attacks and strategies.

Wait, who put skill requirements in Diablo 3? Is that still allowed?

Auction House.

Jay Wilson speaks about it in detail. Most of it’s long-known info, so I’ll just mention some new stuff here.

Loot is a big deal in the Diablo games. Everything is somewhat randomized. Any monster can drop any item (not really) but this lowers the odds of a given item ever being found. (Jay explaining this so WoW players will understand.)

Item obtaining was a social activity in Diablo 2, but the trading system and interface wasn’t very good. Their main goal in D3 was to improve upon that.

The AH in the beta is not at all full featured. There will be a lot more options and controls in the final game, and they’re testing it internally now.

Smartsearch feature. The game will auto-find you items for sale that are appropriate for your char, with mods you seem to enjoy. You can further sort between them. Also a super search coming up. You can specify exactly item stats that you want. Stackable items will also be saleable. They are not in the beta.

Game Tuning

Wyatt Cheng speaking. Improvements to DiabloWikimonsters, lots of improvements since last year’s Blizzcon and even over what we see in the beta build.

Since most items are found from bosses, it’s important that they are sufficiently difficult. One problem they’ve noticed is that many DiabloWikiboss modifiers are more dangerous to melee characters than to ranged characters. One new modifier to address that issue is called DiabloWikiMortar, and the video shows grenades firing out in all directions from the monster, a bit like Electrified, but with hang time and fire. These mortars do no damage to melee chars, but are nasty for ranged attackers.

They’re also working on improvements to the DiabloWikipassive skills. They want these to be more interesting and functional. Players want a variety of passives; giving them cool effects, as well as better functions, and ways to boost offense or defense for more customization. The developers felt that the Barbarian needed more defensive boosts, so he’s got a new passive called DiabloWikiNerves of Steel. It boosts the barb’s defense by 25% of his Vitality, and should improve his tank-ability.

DiabloWikiFetish Sycophants is a new WD passive, improving his pets.

DiabloWikiCombination Strike is a new Monk passive, that boosts his damage by 10% when he uses a variety of combos. (Rather than just the same one repeatedly.)

Another problem is that some synergies are too strong in the game now. Not that they are officially designated as synergies, as in Diablo 2, but that some passives all work in the same way, and this makes it too advantageous to pick several in a group. Their example is three Monk passives that all boost Dodge, damage dealt when he dodges, etc. Any of them works fine alone, but when all three are used together it makes for too big a bonus, and players feel obligated to take all three for the big effect, which has the result of decreasing build diversity.

The Barbarian.

They’re happy with him, for the most part. One thing that needed improvement was his DiabloWikiFury generation. Players were finding that the bigger skills that generated Fury, such as DiabloWikiGround Stomp and DiabloWikiLeap Attack were much more useful than the small increases from melee-hitting, spammable, skills like DiabloWikiCleave and DiabloWikiBash and DiabloWikiFrenzy. So those melee ones have been boosted in effect.

Survivabilty for the Barbarian was an issue at higher difficulties. Not in the beta, of course, but in their internal testing the Barb was having issues at higher difficulty levels. They couldn’t stand in there and tank as they were supposed to, so the developers have added some better passives for that (such as the aforementioned Nerves of Steel), and they’ve also made some changes to the Barb’s base stats to make him tougher.


They like how the DiabloWikiWizard is working, on the whole. Her formerly-named “Academic Skills” have been renamed “Signature Skills.” These skills get cheaper as the Wizard levels up, which is a function the developers like. They’re also tweaking numbers on skills that cost Arcane Power, to make sure the balance is good between those and the Signature Skills.

The biggest change to the Wizard and Witch Doctor is something we noticed when Blizzard posted the updated skill info on their website. All skills in the game now obtain their damage from a percent of weapon damage. The developers wanted to make casters value their weapons more. So does this mean a Wizard should use a big 2h weapon? Not so much, since weapon speed ties into casting speed. Makes daggers and wands more powerful. (Not mentioned by Wyatt, but DiabloWikimojos and DiabloWikiorbs in the off hand add a lot of offensive bonuses, to go with one-handed weapons and make up some of the damage you might give up compared to using a big two-handed weapon.)

Witch Doctor

A common fan complaint is that mana is too easy, in the beta. That’s intentional.

They’re providing multiple ways for the WD to recover mana in the game. There are passives that help with it, as well as rune effects in some of the DiabloWikiWitch Doctor skills that boost mana regeneration, or lower mana costs. You can gain mana from items as well, since they want players to choose a mixture of these. A player can take all the mana loading options and have infinite mana, but you’ll be giving up other benefits to do so.

The point though, is that mana regen tactics don’t really exist in the beta, since low level WDs have to work hard to run out of mana at all. (This is not entirely true; I was playing just yesterday and trying to use only DiabloWikiCorpse Spiders and Grasp of the Dead, and I was constantly out of mana. You can run through it pretty quickly during intensive DiabloWikiFirebats use as well.)

That aside, there will definitely be mana cost issues for the WD in the full game, but as the skill runes, gear bonuses, etc aren’t available in the early going, the class is designed to have almost infinite mana, at least in Act One.

DiabloWikiCircle of Life is a new Witch Doctor passive. This is meant to enable non-pet play, since it spawns a Mongrel some % of the time when a monster dies within close proximity to the Witch Doctor. This lets a player have tanks without actually putting a point into Mongrels at all, and is meant to increase build variety. (Though they’re optional in the easy beta, presumably a point in Mongrel was pretty much mandatory at higher levels.)


Survivability issues. During internal testing they think the Monk is fine later in the game, as he has a lot of defensive skills and abilities that make him strong. Early on they’ve had some complaints about too much dying, so they’ve made some changes to early combo skills to help him. They’ve added more length to DiabloWikiDeadly Reach, stuck a knockback effect on DiabloWikiDashing Strike, etc.

DiabloWikiMantras aren’t really useful in the beta, but even when players are using them in testing, there’s no real “decision point” on when to cast or recast it. So they’ve added a property that doubles the mantra’s bonus for three seconds after its cast. Note that Mantras have a 120s duration, and a 30s cooldown, so the 3s bonus can only be obtained twice a minute at most, though by using two Mantras and switching between them players could get a lot more total time with the double bonus.

Combo attacks are getting some boosts. some players want to use one combo all the time. Others want to combine multiple combos. They’re working to make both styles possible. Making them better to combine without requiring players to use more than one. (See the mention of Combination Strike above.)

Demon Hunter

Wyatt described the big recent skill makeover, but as we’ve discussed it a fair amount already, I’ll skip most of that here. Basically, skills are now split between Hatred Spenders and Hatred Generators, with Hatred regen much slower. So players can learn to alternate their skills between the spenders and the generators, instead of everything costing Hatred and the DH always being out of it, at least in the early going.

They’ve also made big changes to the snares and traps that the Demon Hunter uses. These are now better at keeping enemies at range, with more stun and root type effects, as well as higher damage.

Making Skills Awesome

“Cranking up the awesome across all the classes.” Amping up the visuals, the feel, the effects. So skills work the same as they did, but have more appeal and fun factor.

Chris Haga speaks for this part. Kick ass gameplay is more than a great idea or mechanic. Covering things that didn’t quite make the cut and how they were improved.

Monk: They wanted the Monk to incorporate some kind of “temple aesthetic” into his skills. So he can summon a temple and then collapse it on his enemies. Cool, but lots of gameplay issues. Complicated, takes up too much cicking snd space, etc. So now he just summons a whole temple column, which hits and hurts, then explodes a moment later.

Demon Hunter. They wanted a DiabloWikicompanion of some kind. Lots of ideas. Raven, Wolf, and crazier ideas. Floating skull. Bounces around like a rock. Also tried a floating sword. Didn’t seem to match very well with the DH, though. So now she’s got a bat that bites enemies. Flies around and tanks a bit. They also show the summoning moment of ferrets, with two of them popping out at once. (No mention was made of the delightfully cheesy Beastmaster movie, but since I saw that on cable about fifty times when I was too young to know any better, I was immediately reminded of it.)

Barbarian. DiabloWikiCall of the Ancients is demonstrated on the video, and the crowd goes wild.

Monsters also need to be awesome. so you enjoy killing them more. The Goatman Shaman is shown. He’s got a sort of lightning shield, kind of like the Wizard skill. But it’s not visual or impressive enough, so they gave him a frost attack projectile. Which wasn’t very impressive either, frankly. Just a sort of dusty blob like an DiabloWikiArcane Orb, but with cold damage.

They did show a cool new monster, which they called the DiabloWikiRock Worm monster. It’s first seen in Act Two, and it’s like a giant worm that’s underground, shooting its head out and snapping at you. Apparently that wasn’t cool enough though, so recently it got an upgrade where it can now come out of the ground directly below a character and swallow them up, doing damage before spitting you back out.

Difficulties in Diablo III

Jay Wilson. Lists the four difficulty levels and describes their differences.

Normal difficulty. The beginning of the game, Act One is the tutorial. Blizzard doesn’t like stand-alone tutorials, so they teach you while playing. That’s why early Act One is pretty easy. Monsters have low awareness, they don’t attack very fast or seriously, they pause a lot, etc. Limited abilities. Not even many ranged monsters.

Each act layers on more challenges. The developers grouped all the monsters into categories such as ranged attacker, melee attacker, AoE damage, etc, ranked them by how nasty they were, then slotted them through the difficulties accordingly. In the later acts and higher difficulties, monsters will respond more quickly, move faster, act more aggressively, show more abilities, etc.

Common feedback

Common feedback from players, and how they’ve reacted to it.

One very common complaint, from internal testing as well as fans in the Beta, is that it’s too easy. Jay says it’s not so different than D2, and he shows a clip of a Sorceress walking around the Blood Moor while Zombies and Quill Rats ignore her. The crowd laughs.

Diablo III is supposed to be easy early on. They’re not worried about that since any serious player will blow through the normal stuff and get into the difficulty soon enough. They want to make the game accessible to casual players.

“Hardcore games for everyone is what Blizzard does.”

The early game is for casual players, because Blizzard wants to turn them into hardcore gamers. It’s how they draw people in and make them real gamers.

How hard is late game in Diablo 3, though? Jay says it’s super hard, but that we won’t believe him when he says it. So they ran video of some of their Q&A guys talking about how hella hard it gets later on. One guy says the game really begins in Nightmare, where you have to play for real or you will die. Hell gets much more tense. And then you get into Inferno and pretty much the first boss pack will own you. The AoE effects and damage is really dangerous. Gold becomes very valuable as repair costs are crazy.

How do they make higher difficulties harder?

Game depth: New item affixes. They save a lot of the more interesting and powerful modifiers for higher levels, since they’re not needed in normal. Characters need more resistances later in the game, and so items start to spawn with them. Lots of new attributes come in on higher difficulties. Around 70% of the types of items in the game don’t show up until past normal difficulty.

Rare and Champion monsters. There are new DiabloWikiBoss modifiers galore at higher difficulties. In normal they get two mods, three in Nightmare, and they get up to four in Hell/Inferno. Plus there are nasty mods that only show up later on. These often introduce new mechanics, rather than just adding say, more fire damage.

Inferno. Everything will be soloable. But it’ll be hard. While they view Diablo as a co-op game, that’s for fun. Not mandatory. Multiple tiers of items in Inferno. Increasingly more rare.

Rares and champion bosses are the best loot in the game. The developers are trying to avoid monotonous boss runs in D3. They want to randomize the content. They want to patch boss runs post-release, to make sure the best gear comes from playing a variety of areas.

Crazy builds. They want people to make crazy builds and variety. WoW focuses on optimal builds. You make the best character of a given type, and items are designed to facilitate that. In D3, there are no guilds, raids, or roles to be stuck in, so you don’t *have* to do X or Y with a character. Co-op in D3 is optional and for fun. Diablo focuses on viable builds and variety.

A petless Witch Doctor, for instance. They show one playing in Hell, and using DiabloWikiGrasp of the Dead, DiabloWikiSpirit Walk, and lots of attack skills. It’s not as easy as just tanking up behind DiabloWikiMongrels or a DiabloWikiGargantuan, but it can be done.

Jay then shows off a DiabloWikiBattle mage. It’s not a melee fighter style, but one that uses spells to fight with at close range. So there’s DiabloWikiSpectral Blade, DiabloWikiDiamond Skin and DiabloWikiSlow Time for defense, etc.

Viable over Optimal: Tons of customization in D3. Allows for more self-expression. Somewhere around 2.8 trillion possible builds at this point. There may be some best builds, but there are tons of viable ones that will also work. They don’t mind if some are better, so long as they’re not so much better it’s just pointless to experiment.

Player Beta Feedback

They say that player feedback has affected the development of the game in countless ways, but they picked three almost at random to profile here.

1) DiabloWikiSkill system. They show video of someone playing with their Skill Window open, swapping skills constantly. They like easy switching, but not that easy. Also, something I noted immediately in my beta play, is that you get no sense of identity or loyalty to a character, when you can just change anything at any time. Thus the developers feel this is a little exploitative, and they want to slow skill switching around a bit. Coming soon to a beta patch will be a change that requires players to go to some object in town in order to change around their skills. They’re not sold on this as their final design, and are still iterating it, though.

2) DiabloWikiFollowers: They were not going to be viable past normal difficulty, as the devs saw Followers (mercs) as a Single Player/story feature. Most fans didn’t like that though, and thought it was a wasted feature to only have Followers in normal. The developers agreed, and Followers are now DiabloWikiend game viable. Jay didn’t explain, but presumably they are still single-player only.

3) Items. I’m happy to take credit for this one, (even though lots of people had the same objection that I did) since I complained bitterly about it in the last Weekly News Attack podcast. I liked that the Diablo-related item names were back, but thought it was pointless to just throw in the names on items that didn’t have any real connection to their stats in the original game. I singled out the D3 Ob/Zod (which adds damage, vitality, and 2 random properties) as particular nonsense, since Obsidian (30-40% resist all) and Zodiac (+16-20 all attributes) were actually affixes with a specific meaning in D1. It’s not like the Grandfather or Eaglehorn or some other Unique that didn’t have any special theme to the stats. Much to my delight, the new Ob/Zod stats are in fact, related to the stats found on the item in Diablo 1.

You can see the stats on the new version of the ObZod to the right.

Questions from the Audience.

There was only time for one, and the guy read it off his phone, yet still misspoke several times. Easier to ad lib known material than try to go from an unfamiliar script!

The question was how many free item postings players would get in the Real Money Auction House. Jay says some amount per week, and the figure has not been set yet. Nor have they decided which day of the week to start a new “week” on. Yet.

Tragically, Grug was #2 in line to ask a question… and they only took one since the panel went long. As he texted me about it, “FML.”

This panel write up will have images and more links added and will be archived in the DiabloWiki in the immediate future.

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45 thoughts on “Diablo 3 Gameplay and Auction House Panel

  1. O.K., good, they are still adding new, (hopefully interesting) passives, they are aware that their skills have insane multipliers, followers are now viable late game.

    I am really, really surprised that their Barbarians are dying like flies. They have an insane amount of numerical life leach and restoration, damage reduction effects, etc. Sounds like glass cannons truly will be glass by comparison.


    “The biggest change is that their skills have changed to % weapon damage. They wanted to make casters value their weapons more. So does this mean a Wizard should use a big 2h weapon? Not so much, since weapon speed ties into casting speed. Makes daggers and wnads more powerful.”

    Does that mean spell cast speed is now governed entirely by Attacks Per Second, or does the base weapon determine base spellcast speed?

  2. Cool, the followers are end game viable, I like that.

    Now, make the 10 characters limit go to 50 and everything will be perfect! (except for the online only game of course)

  3. Can’t wait to see what people find to bitch about in this information given that Blizzard seem to have adopted many of the most-requested fan changes (i.e. followers end game viable; system implemented to preclude skill swapping on the fly).

  4. I don’t mind that followers are end game viable but I hope they are not a necessity.
    I disliked them in general in Diablo 2 and preferred to have my hero be on it’s own. I know it’s a little weird but I can’t play these type of games when you have more than 1 character like Dragon Age or anything else. I know followers act on their own and all but I still dislike having them. In diablo 2, mercenaries were essential to some builds and I’m not a fan of that (especially for Insight or the conviction aura polearms).
    Overall I’m pretty happy with all the things they’ve talked about. Still pumped for this game (and HotS).

  5. hopefully its not just obsidian ring of the zodiac but all/most returning legendary with as similar as D1/2 stats as possible. Makes more sense that way.

    love the end game viable followers change.

    Glad hot swapping of skills is been addressed(minorly is better than not at all)

    All of these changes i wanted, glad they listened to the so called ‘whiners’. Makes for a better game.

    • They showed the new stats on the slide, but it was too small to read easily while I was so busy typing. I’ll try to get a screen grab of it, for my own curiosity if nothing else.

      • Just skimmed back through the replay of the panel and took a screen. It’s in the article above, and yes, it’s got +to all stats and resistances, though the values are nowhere near ob/zod. Other bonuses too, of course.

  6. If followers have a grip of MF skills, hello solo farming in Inferno, whether you like it or not. Ugh. If Inferno is as hard as they claim, you’ll HAVE to use the damn merc, whether you like his witty banter or wish you could stab his throat w/ a rusty trowel.

    • They cut the followers down to 2 skill options per tier so I’m guessing they removed the magic/gem/rune/gold finding stuff and just made them more for dps/utility…

  7. So you get an achievement for visiting Blizzcon (which is pretty lame in itself). What about the people that bought the virtual ticket?

  8. Thanks for the write up. Cool stuff, had no idea the followers were originally only meant for normal difficulty that is obviously a dumb way to go about it and in no way improves upon the mercenaries from D2.

  9. “They’re not worried about that since any serious player will blow through the normal stuff and get into the difficulty soon enough.”

    I still don’t like the sound of this. It’s fine having Act 1 really easy or something, but I’d like to be challenged when I progress through the story for the first time, otherwise it just sorta devalues it. Like reading a wiki plot summary before seeing a movie/reading a book.

    • Yea, I also never like this system. That said if it is changed people will QQ about it, since it is in D2. I actually want to suggest this for a long time, but never had the guts to. massive down vote incoming…

  10. Not a whole lot of new info this time… hopefully the stuff on saturday will be better…

  11. Echoing previous posters, thank you Flux for the lengthy write up! (I also instantly thought of Beastmaster at the mention of the DH’s ferrets)

    One thing that seems a bit troubling is the info about the Barb’s passive “Nerves of Steel” – if they (Blizz) found that Barbs had a hard time doing their job without it, doesn’t that make that skill almost a must have, essentially limiting the Barb to a choice of two passives? It just seems to contradict their design goal in relation to creating build diversity.

    Definitely sounds like they still have a lot of work to do, though it is encouraging that Blizzard does seem to be paying attention to beta game play feedback and using it in their development process.

    • “(I also instantly thought ofBeastmaster at the mention of the DH’s ferrets)”

      first thing I thouht of was torchlight
      out of all the animals Blizz could have chosen, they chose a ferret ?

  12. Rare boss packs having the best loot?  Very excite!!  This means no more runs!  This also means you should explore all sections of the map and randomly generated side areas!  The end-game mercs idea is also great!  Just let us equip them more!

  13. Ya nothing really new. Glad difficulty will be there, at least i’ll be around for a bit…… But still want to know more about end game….. ENDLESS DUNGEON DANG IT!!! But i really wanna have some suprize so dang it better give us something to be suprized about!!!

  14. Surely they won’t make followers viable end game yet still restrict them to solo play… hardly a good idea to encourage multiplayer as seems to be one of their underlying design philosophies.

  15. “Jay explaining this so WoW players will understand.”
    *yawn*, you have to try better Flux next time. This is already old and boring.

  16. Pretty much everything listed there looks good, in my opinion.  It looks like they are listening to beta feedback and are making some good changes.  The main things that jumped out at me that I really like are: 1) Followers are now viable end-game.  And 2) There is no more skill-swapping in combat.

    More and more excited about this game each day.

    • well all of the feedback was actually talked about many times before the beta even began.  I’m really glad blizzard did take a look at these things though, as the legendary stats problem flux mentions could have easily slipped under the development radar & that would of been a damn shame.

  17. Monk’s column looks really bad, iron thing, now – piece of temple… They need to call him architect

    • Yeah, seriously.  Is it just me or does this “summon temple” skill sound like the most retarded skill ever conceived?  And the way the guy was describing it, I was like, Dude STFU and just let us see the skill.  The fact that he needed to repeatedly point out how “awesome” it is just made it all the worse.

      • I can’t quite make up  my mind as to where Blizz has actually reached its height, the column skill or the giant-zombie-eating frog. You pick;)

  18. Oh god, why Blizzard, why did you have to make effing followers end-game viable. They were perfectly fine as they were, anyone who wanted to play with a follower could do so, anybody who hated their guts (like, say me), could choose not to do so. Now that followers are end-game viable, they are going to be a neccesity. Doesn´t matter if they no longer have +magic find/gold find/gem find, even if they only add 10% dmg on top of your own dmg and have no other skills/effects, that is still enough for them to become a must in Inferno. Because of you would normally do 1,000 dmg but with follower you can do 1,100 (or 10,000 damage, and with follower 11,000), considering how difficult Inferno will be, that will still make them a necessity. And they will have some additional effects, healing/tanking for glass cannons/whatever. ugh. Well, I say, screw followers and their bonuses/buffs/utility/tankiness/whatever. I am going to play glass cannon Wizard in Inferno without a follower. It will be special mode, no followers Inferno.

    Other than that (massive) dissapointment, everything else was great. I´m loving all other info. And I was quite surprised by Mystic giving mods on items. And it is nice to know how many possible boss mods will monsters have.

    • “Now that followers are end-game viable, they are going to be a neccesity.”

      you don’t know that at all 
      you haven’t played nm, hell or inferno mode 

      Blizz may balance the game so that having a follower actually makes the monsters more difficult, just as having a 2nd player would 
      it may actually be to your advantage NOT to have a follower by your side because the monsters will be their normal difficulty for that mode

      • “Blizz may balance the game so that having a follower actually makes the monsters more difficult, just as having a 2nd player would 
        it may actually be to your advantage NOT to have a follower by your side because the monsters will be their normal difficulty for that mode”

        God, I sure hope so. Right now my biggest fear for D3 is followers becoming a must on Inferno difficulty. That would mean giving players followers with no penalties. But I have no problem with followers being given to players, but then doing something to reduce player chars power or make that difficulty more difficult.

    • I don’t understand this already over-used argument…

      Why does having viable followers in Inferno means that they are going to be NECESSARY?

      I mean, doesn’t Inferno players like the game being more difficult? Therefore, if they play without followers, won’t it be a good thing that the game is more difficult? Isn’t that actually a good thing?

      Of course, if you’re just playing for gear, then you’re not really playing the game…

      • If they don’t balance the difficulty around the extra merc, then Inferno isn’t as hard as it is supposed to be. If they balance the difficulty around the extra merc (you can split off some incoming damage from your character to the merc, the merc does some damage, the merc can heal, etc), then Inferno becomes damn near impossible w/o one. I want a challenge, but if I get ROFLstomped repeatedly in Inferno b/c I don’t use a merc, then that’s annoying. Remember, you’re supposed to be able to solo, and co-op is for fun; so, does that mean merc power is nerfed? How are they balancing the end game? Merc or no merc?

  19. Magic/gold find on rings/items means that stacking as much of these stats as possible and leeching from the rest of the party is the most efficient way of farming loot. 🙁

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