Diablo 3 ROS MVP critiques

Any Forum MVP is entitled to their own opinion, and they earn the green text via recommendations and Blizzard’s observations. However 90% of the time MVP’s have a tendency to err on the side of “fanboyism”, not to say that’s a bad thing, but they in large have a proclivity to have a more level head and sense of patience. That being said, the current patch seems to have stirred the pot in both regular players and MVP’s alike. This has spurned a large amount of valid criticism and pre-order cancelations. While the cancelation may be premature the critique certainly is not.

The critique after the bump!

Drothvader took to the forums first in his post, and while he can be critical at times usually it’s directed and dare I say hopeful? This time was different. Grab a drink this might take a bit

Now, I say all of this with no ill will towards anyone. I don’t mean to cause any unrest, or upset people, but I feel what I have to say has to be said for the future of Reaper of Souls.

I speak for nobody but myself, and I am being absolutely 100% truthful when I say that I am disappointed with Reaper of Souls since the Friends and Family push ended. I spoke so highly of the development of Diablo III and how many amazing improvements were coming down the pipeline, but I fear I might have spoken too soon.

There are some really great and amazing features that have come out in the last push. One of them being able see what type of elemental damage each skill does instead of having to guess. That is a very welcomed addition. Even then, there are a lot of great things this expansion adds which are Rifts and Bounties.

Rifts have so much amazing potential that I feel is absolutely wasted. The core design behind them is great. I love being able to play randomized dungeons with randomized enemies. But even after a while, that can get boring and stale. Not quite as stale as it would be if you were doing something like CotA runs, but still it gets pretty monotonous after a while. Then there’s literally no incentive to finish the dungeons which makes them feel unpolished and bland. On top of that, they’re no more rewarding than a bounty run anyway which makes them even more underwhelming. All of that said though, I still welcome rifts anyway.

I was so excited when I played the Friends and Family push. Sure, there were quite a few bugs that still needed ironed out, but overall the progression felt good. It felt natural… Now, the droprates on Legendaries might have been a little too high, but it didn’t need adjusted much. Maybe 1/2 or 1/3 of what they were during the F&F.

Now when I play I don’t have that feeling of the next greatest drop being around the corner… I have this feeling that I am never going to be able to find anything worthwhile. Also, given the fact that Legendaries almost never drop, any that does isn’t worth using because I was able to find a better rare in the meantime thanks to Enchanting. Now every time I am even lucky enough to find one, I have to think to myself “Is it really worth making a 10% or even higher concession in DPS just so shrines last 5 times longer?” More often than not, that answer is no. So now when I do find a Legendary, it has to be more powerful than the rare I had obtained…

These droprates are awful. So awful in fact that the BoA model is no longer justifiable which is a complete shame given how hard I fought for BoA. I was among the first, if not the very first who publicly advocated on a consistent basis that the top end of gear needed to be BoA. I know this model can and will work, but not like this.

Now I see even in the latest push the droprates were still not raised… The justification for this being that gambling can now produce a Legendary.

So you’re forcing 2 things upon the playerbase now.

1) In order to enjoy anything remotely close to a good droprate you have to buy RoS.
2) Bounties are THE MOST important thing you can do in game… again…

Since shards don’t increase past expert, what motivation would there be to even play past expert in the first place?

You have such an amazing base for a game, but it is a continual disappointment given how little consideration there is for psychologically motivating a player to continue playing your game.

Someone almost 2 years ago gave this analogy (I believe it was Wyatt) and I feel it is very appropriate. Keep in mind I’m paraphrasing from memory as I cannot remember where I read it.

If you feed the Monkey too much juice, it will become fat and lethargic.
However, if you feed the Monkey too little juice, it will starve to death.

The thing you want to do in this case is to feed the Monkey (IE players) enough to not make them fat, but also keep them from feeling starved.

You have very consistently been given feedback that the droprates are not high enough to justify playing the game. Perhaps this is what you’re testing for? How much you can starve the players of drops until they just throw in the towel and quit your game?

With the game as it is now and your justification for low droprates being that you can gamble for them, I would not expect this game to last more than just a few months. As I said, with droprates as low as they are now, there is absolutely no justification for BoA. In addition, elites only drop between 1 – 3 pieces of gear whereas before they used to drop between 3 – 5… If you kept the same roll chance for a Legendary, you have nearly HALVED the droprate on Legendaries… You guys need to look at the whole picture with your changes. If you keep changing 1091823098 variables at once without seeing how each one interacts with each other, you’re not gathering any meaningful data. With all of these changes happening at once, it’s like all of the time spent researching droprates was wasted.

In addition to all of that, when you changed the damage output of some spells, you justified it by reducing the chance to find Health Potions and Health Globes… So now it feels even WORSE because I have less healing coming in and I will at some point be forced to buy potions because they don’t drop enough to sustain my inventory. This is yet another situation where the pendulum has swung in the complete opposite direction.

I advocated for BoA for so long because I wanted a game that was rewarding, but wasn’t influenced by a global market. Right now it seems the game is catering towards those who dedicate their whole life to this game and given that’s what, about 0.1% of your playerbase do you really expect the game to succeed like that?

Players who play this game 10+ hours a day for a year will NEVER be satisfied with whatever model you put forth. You should make your game more enjoyable for the other 99.9% of the playerbase. You know, the ones who will actually refer their friends and say “Hey, come play this great game with me!”

As it stands right now, even though I preordered my physical CE the very first day that gamestop was taking preorders I am contemplating cancelling and applying that money elsewhere.

You have a chance to redeem this title, and I feel like you’re squandering it…

Now as I said, I say none of this with ill will towards anyone. I say this because if all of this is left unsaid the game might be doomed to the same failures it made with Vanilla. Please, do not repeat the mistakes of the past. Stop trying to artificially extend the life of the game by giving us this masochistic grind for the sake of having a grind. Instead, give us reasons to play the game multiple times like you would in a ladder.

RoS is probably your last chance before the rest of your playerbase jumps ship. Now that you’ve upset all types of players with RoS (Those who traded and those who enjoy finding stuff on their own) if you don’t get it right with RoS it may not be recoverable.

I’ll try and force myself to test RoS for a little bit longer, but any hope I have of the game getting better is dwindling.

I hope what I have said doesn’t strike a nerve, because this is more of a plea. Please save RoS.

The long and short of it is that this current patch fails to capitalize on the excitement for an expansion. The F&F beta was riddled with bugs but by in large was a great experience. Each subsequent patch has diminished on that experience and failed to capitalize on the gains made by the new additions. This is merely anecdotal as TheTias quickly followed up on Droth’s post with his own opus.

As much as it pains me to say this, and I really wanted to never get to this point, Drothvader’s post is really only the tip of the iceberg with regard to the problems RoS has right now. He’s already covered the drop rate issues and the sustainability of BoA, so I have no need to expound upon that too much, but there are several other issues that threaten to just destroy RoS outright if they aren’t addressed. I’ll go over those in this post.

Monster Scaling…or is it Monsters on a Scale?

This has been an issue ever since D3 launched, and continues to be an issue now. Originally monster HP in D3v was too high and their damage just obliterated anybody that wasn’t in a tank build with nothing but regeneration and mitigation affixes across all of their gear. This was Inferno 1.0 and less than a handful of builds were even viable past Act 1, leaving few players to legitimately get anywhere, and that was only if they got lucky with the drops. Even fewer players got past Act 1 without cheesing Tyrael or abusing some other mechanic. But no matter what players did, monsters did damage in the range of 200k-400k damage per attack in Inferno 1.0.

Enter patch 1.0.5 and Monster Power. Inferno had been toned down, and the developers stated MP3 would be the equivalant of the “original” Inferno (that proved not to be true in the end). Players had hoped Monster Power would implement a sliding difficulty system, hopefully with more intelligent gameplay as difficulty levels progressed. Instead, they were met with more and more absurd scaling in both monster damage and monster HP, but especially with monster HP. Pre-Inferno MP10 wasn’t completely off the wall, but it was still more than one would expect. In fact, at 400% HP, it was equivalant to /players 7 in Diablo 2: LoD.

However, Inferno was another matter entirely. It took only MP4 to break that barrier at 454% HP. MP10 jumped to a massively, humongous, whoppingly ludicrous 3439% HP. Yikes. So instead of many builds really being able to take on MP10 and kill things within any reaonable timeframe, only a few could. A very few. For everybody else it was an insanely long war of attrition just taking down trash monsters. Sadly, trash monsters would become the mainstay of what was killed as time progressed, but that will be mentioned later in the post.

Enter: Reaper of Souls. Monsters past LV 10 have more HP than monsters at LV 30 on Live. Starting at LV 40 it gets progressively worse, where monsters leave MP3 HP totals from Inferno in the dust. Yes, monsters at LV 40 going up to LV 50 have more HP than those found on Live in Inferno MP3. On Normal difficulty. We haven’t even gotten to the higher difficulties yet. At LV 50, Normal difficulty trash monsters have well over 100k HP. Their elite brethren have 300k-450k HP.

As we get closer and closer to the LV 60-70 range, monsters leave even MP10 in the dust. At LV 70, Belial on Torment 6 has 44,000,000,000 HP. Yes, billions. To give you a perspective on that, the highest HP total MP10 monsters had roughly 330 million HP. So figure scaling roughly fifteen times greater than MP10 ever gave us. White “trash” monsters have 300 million HP each. And we see people asking for higher monster density for some reason. Trash monsters in MP10 had roughly 2-3 million HP. So for those we’re talking a 100x increase. Given that our weapon DPS is only a bit less than double what it was in D3v (using the currently instated weapon DPS nerfs coming out of the FaF beta period), that’s just insane. And the gear we have can’t even support our playing in anything higher than T2 or T3 except for a few rather broken builds right now.

Moving on…

Affixes and Six Degrees of Separation (of Primary and Secondary affixes)

Originally, there were no Primary or Secondary affixes. They were all just grouped together and one had to hope that the affixes they wanted rolled on the item in question. Now they are clearly separated into two tiers, but there’s a problem. Previously, all six of the potential affix slots could roll any of primary or what are now secondary affixes. In RoS, only four primary affixes can roll except on specific legendary items.

Now, the devs gave us more affixes to play with, but they also made getting certain things like mitigation stats or affixes harder if we want to maintain damage, and vice versa if we want to maintain survivability. Because healing affixes are Primary affixes (outside of health globe bonuses) and armor and all resist (AR) are both Primary affixes, those take up very valuable slots. It’s even more aggravating for armor since the baseline armor values for items have not improved going from LV 60 to LV 70 items. This is critical since it is now virtually impossible to maintain anywhere near the golden 10:1 Armor to AR ratio for mitigation and still have any room for damage affixes. And you need that armor, since too little vs. AR and each point of AR suffers diminishing returns on an exponentially sliding scale because the other half of the multiplier (armor) isn’t increasing. Good luck getting your damage affixes when you have to build for such high Toughness now.

Resistances are now also counted among the very aggravating affixes to get too. Single resists and AR cannot roll on the same item anymore. And what’s worse, you cannot change single resists to AR. Single resists are a Secondary affix, and AR is a Primary affix, and you cannot exchange a Primary for a Secondary affix. This for Monks has made One With Everything (OWE) all but mandatory unless the player just decides to go AR on all pieces that can roll it. So that’s another hit to our mitigation.

The loss of Life Steal was welcome initially, but that quickly turned sour when the scaling of the monster damage was realized. It didn’t take players long to run into sustainability issues with regard to healing vs. damage intake. And with unavoidable damage being a rather significant portion of our damage intake now, this is a huge problem. Life on Hit (LoH) relies on a proc coefficient built into every skill. And each skill has a different coefficient. So most of the time, you aren’t even getting the full effect of LoH, which even at a 1.0 coefficient (100% effectiveness per hit), it isn’t keeping up at all with incoming damage.

So we gear for Life Regeneration (LR). This gives us consistent, if not timely, healing. And in concert with LoH should have sufficed for our needs. Unfortunately that has proven to also not be the case. Even with some players reaching 50k LoH, damage comes in far too quickly to heal, forcing the player to pray that life giving health globes drop, and drop soon.

Since LoH and LR together aren’t enough to mitigate the incoming damage enough to help us survive, the three classes with Life per Resource Spent (LpRS), the Barbarian, Crusader, and Monk, had to add that to their gear to survive. So yet another Primary affix slot taken on weapons and helms. Unfortunately that got nerfed too much too. It produced a yo-yo effect much like LS does on Live, but it sustained us and was necessary really since monster damage and unavoidable damage combined for a lethal combination that the two previous affixes were found to be insufficient for. Sadly, LpRS is now pathetic and if we have any resource reduction affixes on our gear, is even less effective since the resources spent directly correlates to HP healed.

So instead of engaging combat where we…engage the enemy, we hit and run now. A lot. Too much in fact. It’s maddening to constantly have to run. Not even in D2/Hell was it this bad.

The Elephant in the Room, or RoS is a Republican

Usually when things get out of control with scaling, it can be traced back to a very few, or even one source. Such is the case here in RoS, and anybody playing D3v will understand why. Critical Hit Damage (CHD).

A preface here: Total damage is as follows: Weapon damage * Mainstat multiplier * CHD * APS = DPS.

Now, you’ll notice how each of those multiplies off of the others. It is not linear. It’s not even logarithmic. It’s almost exponential. If you have a weapon damage of 100, a mainstat of 3000, and a CHD stat of 400 your damage looks like so at 1.0 APS: 100 * 30.00 * (1 + 4.00) = 15,000. If you have 1.5 APS, that becomes 22,500 DPS. From a weapon with 100 damage. That’s a factor of 225x weapon damage there.

So when we have that kind of damage output, guess what happens to monster HP? Yup, you guessed it, it has to scale just as absurdly. That’s how we ended up with MP10 values like 3439% HP.

In RoS, it gets worse. So much worse that even Normal monsters have way more HP than on Live. In fact, LV 60 gear would have trouble downing some LV 50 monsters in a reasonable amount of time. Many players on the PTR have encountered this already. It’s worse as you get into the RoS level range of 61-70. Much worse. And bosses are downright sadistic in the amount of HP they have.

And all of this is because our damage system is entirely multiplicative. And the primary culprit is CHD. It’s what makes sockets mandatory on weapons, and even more so in RoS since weapons no longer roll CHD at all, even though armor does.

This should have been made 100% baseline with no CHD affix in the game. With that kind of setup, scaling is brought down tremendously. And if mainstat’s interaction with weapon damage were normalized instead of being purely multiplicative, scaling could be even further lowered to finally come down to a sane amount.

Affixes 2: Electric Boogaloo

Legendaries and Sets have been designed with one purpose in mind in RoS: To trump everything else. Legendaries do this with “unique” affixes that are “game changing”. And since the developers are insistent that we only seek Legendary and Set items as our ultimate prize, they also for some inexplicable reason retain their ability to roll certain affixes out of slot.

Examples of this are: Resource regeneration, Movement Speed, and Attack Speed. Notable culprits? The Witching Hour, Lacuni Prowlers, Stone of Jordan.

Utility affixes such as those that help us get around or that allow us to have better sustainability only show up on Legendaries outside of the two usual slots, which are class specific weapons and helms. And note that only class specific applies here. Regular versions of items in those slots cannot roll these affixes. And rare items cannot roll them at all out of their normal slots, so no rare ring can roll Spirit Regeneration for example.

This leads to many players keeping their LV 60 Legendaries well into LV 70 because if they didn’t, their build would be broken because the affixes aren’t there on rare gear and may not even be there on Legendary gear in the new versions out at LV 70. This is the primary reason rares cannot compete with Legendaries at all. Being locked out of these rather necessary affixes damages their power capability significantly.

But then there’s the flip side: We’ve got Legendaries that are rolling worse stats and affixes than the rares they’re supposed to replace. This is especially true of the crafted Legendaries and Set items, which almost always roll worse than the rare of the same slot does. This leads to things like what Drothvader and I have both experienced, which is finding a Legendary that can beat the rare in the same slot is very difficult. And with the drop rates the way they are, next to impossible.

So this little conundrum creates an artificial brick wall for player progression when it doesn’t have to (and shouldn’t). And it’s a primary culprit in keeping builds alive in RoS sans Legendaries, as well as forcing Legendaries to be the only endgame in town.

It truly is a contradictory system.

Movement Speed, Where Art Thou, or Snail Males and Females: Part Deux

Why is it that in RoS we’re still running around so slowly it’s like trying to move through frozen molasses during winter? The movement speed cap remains the same. The movement speed limitations on gear remain the same. Yet monsters move faster than ever before. Getting around the zones feels like a slog and generally speaking is very unpleasant. Why else do you think the Steed is mandatory on the Crusader, Vault is mandatory on Demon Hunters, Teleport is mandatory on Wizards, and things like Tempest Rush feel mandatory on Monks and other classes?

If a fourteen year old game like Diablo 2 could handle some really fast run speeds, why the hell are we stuck with such slow moving characters?

Crowd Control, or Can You Just Pepper Spray Me and Get It Overwith?

Diablo is built on RNG. It’s at the heart of the game. Unfortunately, so too is its arch nemesis, Mr. Binary in RoS.

So many CC affixes I don’t even know where to start. And they now come in single, double, and triple decker portions on the elites (and uniques). These are the affixes that basically take skill out of the equation by causing partial or total loss of character control. And they’re around every corner in RoS.

Most classes have at least one “escape” ability to get them out of being CC’d, but they’re almost all on fairly long cooldowns, and only a scant few are spammable, and even then only with very broken set item bonuses such as the Demon Hunter’s original Natalyas set pieces that allow Discipline to essentially regenerate quickly enough to be virtually unlimited. Unfortunately for the players, however, monsters are not limited by resources, and apparently not even really by cooldowns.

On my DH, I’ve run into monsters that have three CC affixes such as Waller/Jailer/Vortex and those alone have been able to chain CC me for upwards of 60-120 seconds at a time (yes, without smoke screen on my bar, it’s constant CC all the time). Now let’s add in some monsters that have innate CC such as knockback, a stun, or a snare. Those aren’t on cooldowns and you can be hit with them repeatedly by multiple monsters. A pack of Armaddons even without CC affixes can decimate your character via repeated stuns alone. Remember, your escape abilities are on cooldowns. Use it, and if you’re CC’d again, sucks to be you.

And this situation isn’t the exception to the rule in RoS, it is the norm. I feel like every time I turn around I’m going to be CC’d to death. If it doesn’t have a snare, it has a root. If it doesn’t have a root, it has a stun. If it doesn’t have a stun, it has a knockback. If it doesn’t have a knockback it sucks me in. If it doesn’t suck me in, it fears me.

And then there’s the problem of CC affixes triggering from other affixes’ damage. I’ve been feared and knocked back countless times from being hit by mortar, thunderstorm, or any other damaging affix.

As if that weren’t enough…

Stuck Between a Hard Rock Cafe and Melrose Place

Unavoidable damage. Nearly every game has at least some of this. Most use it sparingly. Some use it liberally, but usually only if there are a great many ways to deal with it. RoS uses it like a Louisianna swamp rat does BBQ sauce on his gator fixin’s. It’s literally eveywhere.

From being CC’d to monsters with innate CC and/or the ability to charge you from offscreen to deliver that damage, you’ll run into it all the time. But the worst is the new damage components attached to the now infamous CC affixes.

Thunderstorm is virtually unavoidable for the first hit, though it doesn’t “chase” you as of the current patch. Unfortunately for melee that’s not much consolation since they’re usually locked in place when attacking and movement speed being what it is means we’re still going to get hit more often than not by Thunderstorm’s subsequent strikes. This affix also triggers certain CC affixes such as Knockback and Nightmarish.

Vortex, Jailer, Wormhole now have damage components when they affect your character. For the latter two, your character being hit with the affix or moving into the wormhole damages you in addition to the CC imposed upon you. For Vortex, even the act of the Vortex damages you, even if no other monster is in range to hit you with anything. You can block the CC mostly by terrain with Vortex, but not the damage component.

But now even Frozen has a damage component attached to it. I tested it on Live today to make sure, and it has no damage component. However, in RoS, as of this patch, as the frozen crystal grows in size, the area indicated on the ground as the “final” explosion radius also ticks for sizeable damage about three times per second. So even if you manage to avoid being frozen, you’re going to take damage no matter what unless you can also avoid even the final exploision radius/area altogether. So that counts as yet another form of unavoidable damage too.

So you have constant CC, damage components attached to that CC, and together they make for one hell of a gigantic gear check. Not a skill check. Not an awareness check. A gear check. And that’s sadly what most of RoS boils down to – pure gear checks galore.

Witch…crafting, or Salem Vi

Along with some very dismal drop rates for legendaries, the crafting materials also suffer maladies as well. Rares are so abundant that Veiled Crystals and Iridescent Tears rain from the sky. But the magic components Exquisite Essence and Arcane Dust? Those are found at less than a 1:10 ratio vs. their rare contemporaries, and that’s assuming you pick every last one of them up. Unfortunately for us, the recent halving of magic reagent crafting materials didn’t exactly do much to put a dent into that problem given they’re also required to reroll affixes on items.

As for the crafting itself, the results are anything but good. In fact, the crafted Legendary items almost always roll worse than whatever rare item you might be wearing at the time. They also suffer from the exact same RNG with regard to affix combinations that rares do, and they don’t even come with a unique affix like “real” Legendaries do.

If you factor all of that in along with the time it takes to find the necessary Legendary crafting materials and common (white) items, some of which still don’t seem to be in the game or are impossible to get to drop *cough*Ascended Quivers*cough*, the crafting system is an abysmal failure. You’re better off using your blood shards to gamble for good rares.

Or at least you were…

What Should Have Stayed in Vegas…Didn’t

So the Legendary drop rates are abysmal. We get that. We’ve known it for some time now. So have the developers. So what do they do to counter it? Do they increase the drop rates to a sane level? Nope. Do they add in some sort of RNG protection against repeated bad luck/dry spells? Eh…no. So what was put in?

Gambling for Legendaries.

Previously Kadala, the Blood Shard gambling vendor only gave out magic or rare items (usually the latter past LV 10 and the former from LV 1-9). Now she can generate Legendaries as well, though it’s unclear if she can generate low level Legendaries properly.

It used to be that we’d do bounties for caches to find Legendaries. Originally we found them in Rifts back in the FaF beta. Now all I hear is “just do bounties to get blood shards and gamble for legs. It’s better than anything else to find them!”

Sigh. Really?

So the drop rates weren’t brought up as Drothvader mentioned, and we got this instead. Forget slaying monsters for your loot, we’ll just visit the vendor instead. How…dull. In a game that’s supposed to be about finding your loot by slaying hordes of demons and whatnot, this has to be about as anti-clamactic as it gets. I used to think the Horadric Caches were a bad idea, but those are diamonds in the rough compared to this farce.

There’s A Bounty Out…On You

Right now, Nephalem Rifts are about as unrewarding as it gets. You kill hordes of monsters, but they aren’t dropping anything. So you kill the bosses, only to find that like the Greater Horadric Caches that used to be awarded for downing said bosses, don’t drop Legendaries. Like ever. And now the Blood Shards are gone as rewards too, so you can forget that being an avenue toward progression if you prefer doing Rifts.

Not that you can really do that many Rifts in the first place since the keystones only drop from a fully completed set of five bounties. Bounties are also the only place to get Blood Shards. You can’t get them in Campaign mode, or in Rifts. Bosses don’t drop them. So if you want to gamble for that Legendary or just some rares that you need to shore up your lacking gear, it’s Bounties or Bust.

These have become the most important tasks to do in the game. You can’t do much of anything else in RoS without first doing Bounties. Rifts are tied directly to how many bounty sets you complete. Gambling is tied to the bounties. Gold is tied to the bounties (as they are worth infinitely more than monster drops are on any difficulty). Your whole freaking livelihood in the game is tied to bounties.

So much for variety in playstyles. Or choice.

Watch Out For That…(THUD) Brick Wall (OW!)

In the FaF beta, magic, rare, and Legendary/Set items would roll at the level of the character when they dropped. Now only Legendary and Set items do so. The rest? They are now tied once again to the Live version of Diablo 3’s “block” system. I call it the “level block tiering system”.

So what is this tiering system? It’s where items of a given type, class, or slot will drop only at specific levels. In between those levels the items will drop only from the last tier you reached. So if an item drops at LV 15, 22, 28, 34, 40, and 50 and your character is at LV 33 when they get that item type to drop, they’ll get an item from LV 28 instead of LV 33 if it is a magic or rare item.

What this does is create several “brick walls” along the way as you level up, since monsters are scaling along with your character as you level up, but the items that drop do not unless they’re Legendaries. But remember, those hardly drop now at all. This becomes very noticeable once you hit LV 40 going all the way to LV 70 due to the monsters scaling exponentially, yet your gear isn’t improving anywhere near enough to keep up because in most cases items are dropping at levels well below what you need them to be at.

And so you hit “brick walls” where you can’t easily progress because monsters are scaled too high for your gear, but you can’t get better gear until a certain level past where you are currently at. It’s putting the cart before the horse, and the cart is kicking the horse in the head. This is a very unnatural progression curve, and such stumbling blocks (and I use that term very liberally here) really kill a player’s momentum when leveling. We see a sort of similar occurence at LV 70 due to the disparity between rares and Legendary/Set items as well, so these “brick walls” aren’t limited solely to leveling characters.

Salvage Rights…Or Is It Salvage Rites?

Let’s face it. RoS has some quality of life issues. High up on that list is the chore known as Salvaging. Despite the “less is more” intent behind Loot 2.0, we find ourselves salvaging more now than we ever did on Live. And we have to go back to town to do so. This has the unwanted effect of breaking up combat on a very consistent basis. Far more so than any of the devs would lead us to believe. In a group, this becomes beyond frustrating as not everybody’s inventory fills up at the same time, and in the current splitfarming environment, you’re “on the clock” against other players, meaning going back and forth between town and battlefield is precious wasted time wasted.

We’ve been asking for a means to salvage on the go for a long time now during the beta and yet we still have to go back and forth to do so. I have eleven thousand Veiled Crystals, and various other materials gathered from salvaging. Let’s assume I have 20 1×2 item spaces available in my inventory on average. That’s 11,000 ÷ 20 = 550 trips back and forth just to salvage. Now even assuming all items I get are 1×1 in size, that’s 225 trips back to town to salvage.

That’s ridiculous. And I need to salvage, since certain materials are in such short supply that I have to constantly pick up their associated items and salvage them.

A Salvage and Salvage All button would be nice in our inventory windows please. Salvage All would work on all items of a specific rarity except Legendary items (for what I hope are obvious reasons). This would greatly lessen the time spent dealing with these items. And if you couple this with the idea to make all crafting materials other than gems into UI resources, we free up inventory space as well in our stash, whcih allows us to hold more of those annoyingly difficult to find white/common items used for Legendary/Set crafting.

Arrested Development

Throughout the beta thus far, the development cycle and methodology has just completely baffled us. There isn’t a single soul out there that understands why we’re seeing such awful changes to the game that seem to defy all amounts of feedback we give to the developers. It’s like they either have their own vision and are just ignoring us, or are being ultra selective about who they listen to and/or taking their data and suggestions from those people that cheated their way to the top via exploits and thus were already considered skewed data at best.

We see threads asking for feedback, only to find that the feedback requested is for a tiny subset of the subject matter (e.g. feedback requested for Ubers…in Torment only) or we give feedback on our own and see it go by the wayside. And the result is what we have now – a broken game that is both unrewarding and fast becoming a repeat of history past, right down to how feedback was handled the first time around two years ago.

Alt-ernate Realities

In all Diablo games prior to RoS, including Diablo 3 Vanilla itself, we’ve had the ability to farm for our alts, be it low level gear, mid level gear, or max level gear. Unfortunately, RoS/Loot 2.0 takes that completely away from us.

Monsters, as you know, now scale with our characters. As such, we have precious little time to get any legendaries or even really good rares within a specific level range as we level up. And once we’re past that leven range, we’re screwed because we cannot turn off the monster scaling at all. Nor can we select a monster level for us to fight against to farm that gear from. So now we’re forced to just basically find our drops from…waaaaaaaait for it….Kadala. Yes, the infamous Vegas bunny girl has surfaced again to serve up our uh….needs.

I’m beginning to wonder just who those blood shards are coming from. Could it be us players after we’ve gouged our eyes out in total frustration from lack of fun? Nah, that couldn’t be…..

Get Smart Drops The Ball

The Smart Drop system. Sounds cool. Feels cool when you’re looking for upgrades for the character you’re currently playing. However, much like the Smart Heals in WoW, they’re actually really dumb and are ultimately more harm than good in the long run.

You see, along with the inability to farm for alts at lower levels, you also have difficulty farming for them at high level too because Smart Drops also mean class specific affixes and class specific gear being the norm. So if you want STR gear for your Barbarian or Crusader and you’re plalying a Monk or DH, good luck.

But there’s another annoying fly in the soup: getting gear for your follower. Unless your follower happens to use the same primary stat as your currently played character, you’ll need to switch to a class that matches that primary stat and farm their gear that way. Assuming you have such a character/class available at the level required. Here the Smart Drop system rears its head and blocks your efforts. As an example, it took me nine hours of continuous farming on my DH and Monk to find two measly INT rings for my follower. Nine hours. For two rings.

So we’ve yet another system whose intent is good, but whose implementation destroys more than it improves.

Group Play, or Doing the Banana Split…farming

This one is a biggie. And it’s going to hit a lot of players where it hurts. What is it? Splitfarming.

What is splitfarming? It’s taking each individual member of a group and having them each do separate bounties in Adventure Mode. This maximizes reward intake and is far more efficient than solo play, or even group play where the group members stick together to tackle the tasks and monsters.

This is efficient, but extremely taxing on the player. Not only are you now playing “against the clock” with regard to the other members of your group, you are facing monsters that have scaled up due to multiple players being in the same game, only you don’t have your group members to help you. You’re on your own killing the monsters solo. This means that you are effectively taking on monsters that are as powerful as they would be in a solo game of a full difficulty tier higher than what you’re playing on with the group. And because you aren’t taking on those monsters together, kill speed drops drastically per player (yet still manages to be more efficient than any other method, which should be a huge honkin’ red flag with a skull and crossbones on it to the developers.)

The net effect of this is that a player that could handle say, Expert dificulty solo, ends up feeling like they’re weak and not of much use to the group if playing on that same difficulty and splitfarming. As mentioned before they’re on the clock since there are now other impatient players in the game with them. But their killing speed is greatly reduced because they’re facing monsters that are stronger than they would be in a solo game, yet they’re going it…solo due to the nature of splitfarming. And because this is so efficient, it’s deemed mandatory to get anywhere near a reasonable amount of good loot.

But there’s another snag holding back group play, and that’s the Smart Drop system. In a solo game, Smart Drops make sense as you’re the only one playing. But in a group game, that same system brings along a very bothersome side effect: Stacking the same class is the most efficient way to get chances at loot that any of the group members can use and provides the best opportunity cost of all of the setups possible. And since you can only trade with people that are in your group, most want to be in groups that are made up of the same class to maximize their chances at loot. Whoops.

I had the recent experience this morning of being in a group with Starbird on Expert. My monk can barely kill things on Normal at a decent clip with her TR build, and wasn’t even going to attempt to touch Expert, so I brought in my DH, with about 790k DPS. Funny thing is, she’s stuck on Normal too because kill times are just too low on higher difficulties due to the monster scaling despite that DPS unless I use some pretty broken builds. I don’t like playing builds I don’t like just to be efficient. Unfortunately, I pretty much have to in a group. In this morning’s group, for every one bounty I completed, the other group members completed four to five bounties. I felt weak. I felt like I was holding the group back. They tried to tell me it was OK and just to stick with it as I was still helping them. But it made me feel miserable. So miserable that I actually told Starbird that I was dropping from the group after just one game because I hated how it made me feel to be so craptacular vs. the rest of my team.

I’d have felt a lot better in a “real” group play setting where we helped each other take down the monsters together, but with splitfarming, the group dynamic was such that there was no room for joy at all. I just finally decided to go solo and play by myself since group play was so hellish for me. Starbird told me to switch to one of the more broken builds for my DH, but I told him I tried it already and hated its playstyle. If playing a build you hate is the only way to feel even halfway decent about your contribution to the group, then the mechanics involved as created by the developers with regard to group play are a total failure and at that point we might as well just be given an offline mode for all the good online does us.


In closing, I’m sad to say that the group play dynamic (or lack thereof) was the final straw for me. I never thought I’d actually get to the point I’m at now, given how enthusiastic I was going into the beta, but after experiencing the god awful group play this morning I’d finally had enough and cancelled my RoS CE preorder. And because of that, even if I were to reorder later (or even now), I likely wouldn’t get one even if I wanted to, which sadly at this point I couldn’t care less if I did. The game in its current state is beyond redemption. It’s beyond ridiculous. Frankly, as far as I’m concerned, barring a miracle, it’s beyond hope.

I did not think it possible to make the game any worse than what we have on Live. Boy, was I wrong about that. The game had such good beginnings in the FaF beta, but for some reason or another the developers have driven it downhill, and into a lake for it to sink unceremoniously into the depths of time. I do not see RoS being viable past a month, maybe two at the outset in its current state. And while I’ll continue to test the beta, the level of dreariness that this game has brought to me has caused me to all but completely lose faith that it will be what it was supposed to be: a resurrection of the once glorious Diablo franchise.

I truly wish I didn’t feel this way. It’s an awful thing to have to say to any of you, but the culmination of flaws in both design and intent is what you see today. And the evidence speaks for itself.

To the developers: If you have any semblance of a desire to make this game great, you’ll have to work hard to convince me and many others, because right now, we’re not seeing it. We want to see it. We want to have a kickass game that lasts for years. We want to say we’re proud to play the game you worked so hard on.

I can’t say that right now. 🙁

Edit: Pics or it didn’t happen:

Original Amazon order: http://imageshack.com/a/img163/9440/to6n.png

Cancellation: http://imageshack.com/a/img35/1152/i0de.png

Images edited to remove my name or other personal information.

There are a lot of points there, and if you’ve made it down to this point in the article I’m impressed. Overall it is a very thorough critique, well thought out and well argued. There are only 10 weeks until ROS ships and that’s not a lot of time to fix everything.I am still hopeful to see a lot of this stuff change, and have no intention of canceling my order, but I can agree the current iteration is far from perfect. I like Droth had the most fun in the F&F and found myself losing many hours of sleep to play. In the past few weeks it’s been quite the opposite, with my play very limited as there is a since of futility in it. The MVP title is a small acknowledgement of people’s passion for Blizzard’s games, by in large they are optimistic bunch, but this outpouring should serve as canary in a coal mine for Blizzard as their opinions are indicative of a much larger base.

What are your thoughts on this batch of info?

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134 thoughts on “Diablo 3 ROS MVP critiques

  1. U]want[/U] to.
    So I guess we can still try to be hopeful, to some degree.

    It is healthy for the game that people – who are able to form coherent sentences beyond “screw you Blizzard” – are speaking up. It is just so late into development.

    Speaking of good beta feedback, I liked the post someone made on the official forums a while ago. It was touching on some of the “bigger” issues. The ones Blizzard probably can’t fix before release, but some good points in his ridiculously huge post nonetheless.

    In the end, the mindblowing thing is how Blizzard can apparently not see those issues.
    T L D R
    Not true, I read it yesterday and it’s well argued. Got to agree with their overall points, if not necessarily every detail.

    They are mostly touching on the “smaller” issues – as in stuff that certainly has great impact on the game experience, but should not be excessively hard to fix. The ones that Blizzard could fix before release if they

    So I guess we can still try to be hopeful, to some degree.
    It is healthy for the game that people - who are able to form coherent sentences beyond "screw you Blizzard" - are speaking up. It is just so late into development.
    Speaking of good beta feedback, I liked the post someone made on the official forums a while ago. It was touching on some of the "bigger" issues. The ones Blizzard probably can't fix before release, but some good points in his ridiculously huge post nonetheless.
    In the end, the mindblowing thing is how Blizzard can apparently not see those issues.
    • Hope? What hope? It’s been 5.5 years and critiques have never stopped. You can’t make developers change anything. It’s out of your control. If you think you’re going to have fun, go ahead, buy the expansion. If you don’t, simply don’t buy it.

      Aren’t you players tired of constant critiques, arguments, debates, never ending forum wars?

      I want to spend my time having fun instead of fighting desperately for a game that supposed to have more fun potential only to achieve nothing in the end.

      However, if you like debates and these discussions, you’re on the right track.

      My advice to D3 community: Do yourselves a favour and ask these questions to yourselves. Do I have fun playing D3? Can I have more fun with doing something else instead of playing D3?

      Have fun 😉

  2. I just finished reading the whole tread on the official site and it was a very interesting read. I was never going to pre-order the game (at least after I saw the changes that had been made) or even rush out to get it in March, so the opinions were very going to directly affect me, but the strong, reasoned arguments delivered by the MVPs are a real eye-opener.

    • Agreed. I was thinking about potentially buying the game, will definitely hold off for the time being and see what happens. Such a shame that it has come to this given I pre-ordered the CE for D3V.

      • It’s better for players with doubts to wait for feedback of others, few patches, changes here and there, rather than get dissapointed quickly and never comeback.

      • I only just got into the beta this week. And I feel as if I’m the last person to get the invite. And, it boggled my mind that I wasn’t one of the first; I have thousands of hours of play and I’m very involved in the forums.

        But, I finally got in … I have, up until this week watched Twitch constantly and kept up with the changes in drop rates and all that there was to take in.

        Now, I’m finally playing. I Played ROS for as many hours as work would allow this week. I’ve lost much sleep.

        Unlike ‘TheNix,’ I know, no matter how bad ROS is at launch, I will buy the game. But, I hope that Blizzard doesn’t take that and pat themselves on the back. Because, to Diablo players everywhere … it’s not how many copies were sold, it’s about how good the game is.

        D3V sold a record amount upon release but, what shouldn’t be ignored is the fact that it’s disappointed fan base was also at record high head count.

        Item binding; a players fate on rails hammered in place by the blizzard team? That’s a whole lot of freedom lost … what amazed me most were the people on forums who were advocates of this notion. Who stands in line to voluntarily give up their freedom? Apparently many people do.

        I have plowed through ROS for hours on end and I agree that the drop rate is abysmal. Without FREE TRADE we will all be up the creek.

        I have forced my level 70 barb through the highest difficulties he could tolerate and it takes a long time to kill monsters in Torment when you’re a barb now; they are SO gimped that they’re no longer fun to play. But, that’s another topic … my point was this; even after struggling through torment the reward just wasn’t there.

        Also … rare items … what’s the deal with SO few possible stats being available? I think Bliz should at least make a few rares drop with a chance to have a higher number of affixes.

        This game needs love

        • Its actually not your barb, its the ridiculously high monster hit points.

          Take solace in the fact that somewhere in the universe, in another realm, another adastra is playing a barbarian and rocking torment. But in that universe the monster HP’s are in the realm of sanity.


  3. Xanth,

    Thanks for posting this — I don’t visit the official forums because ew, but I appreciate being made aware of these.

    The bad news is pretty self-evident. I noticed a lot of these things on the PTR (no RoS beta for me) and I thought they were kinda annoying but not dealbreakers:

    -All the unavoidable damage ever
    -Permanent scaling means that bad luck in drops will make leveling annoying for a while
    -The monster HP scaling just feels whack, but I get that they’re trying to enforce longer fights
    -Some legacy legendaries may still be better than even level 70 gear, due to presence of desirable affixes (Inna’s Pants, Inna’s Belt, Lamentation, etc.).

    The drop rates thing, though, is pretty bad. Even if this current tuning is admittedly too low, no reason to punish testers. They should take whatever level of drop rate they think is rewarding and double it, because their definition of “rewarding” has been consistently out of whack with everyone else’s.

    The good news is that almost all of these are spreadsheet tweaks and not core game/engine tweaks. As such, I think they can handily be rectified, provided there’s some will among the devs to do so.

  4. It is hard for any PTR tester to tell how bad the situation is in RoS.
    I play the PTR , I enjoy leveling on PTR much than on Live to the point I leveled 4 characters to 60 but as soon as I hit 60 I hit the gear Brickwall.

    Gear at 60 is mostly bad unless you find a legendary , I find the drop rates for legendaries really low but from what blizzard is saying that you can find legendaries from Bounty Bags and Rift Guardians and Gambling , I feel that it might be ok , but will it be ok ? Will I be happy when I gamble a legendary ? Honestly I rather find the legendary from killing an elite pack than gambling/finding it in a bag , it just feels better when I hear it drop on the ground I start running around between the mobs trying to see and read what type of legendary I got.

    I love the class changes made in RoS and I think they are all good , I like the idea behind rifts but I think it can be improved and almost everybody said that , I also like hunting for Bounties but I think this system can use improvements aswell , I rather not just hunt bounties and restart game endlessly , I want to clear bounties and still want to stay in the game to kill normal monsters and elite packs and feel rewarded and same for rifts.
    I love what they did with the legendaries and I think loot 2.0 is good but I feel that the highest levels of Torment are not yet balanced around the new DPS reduction from F&F and the removal of Crushing Blows , it is so clear when almost everybody that wants to clear Torment 6 has to use Furnace or the one handed weapon which can shatter frozen enemies.

    I also liked the last change in the patch that the best Legendaries are made even rarer now , but the problem is if these Legendaries are build changers and I want that build , how long will I have to play before I get lucky to find that drop ? Will I want to play with anybody other than the classes that use same main stat as me to make sure that when the item drops it is for my class and not for other classes ? and if the item happens to drop how will I ever convince the other person to give me the legendary ? what will I offer him instead ?
    I didn’t mind the idea of Windforce/Grandfather/IK Chest/Tal Rasha’s Chest being so rare in D2 because they weren’t a must have item , they were amazing items in 1.09 and I always wanted them but I didn’t need them to be able to play the way I want to play , I am afraid that this might not be the case with D3RoS.

    I also would love to see the Developers relay more news and info to us about what is going on with them instead of hints and teasing and then we get a lackluster patch like this last ptr/beta patch , almost everybody was hoping for increased drop rates and some kind of surprise or improvements in the Rifts but instead we get that gambling can now give you legendaries and best part is that they can’t be torment legendaries.

    We want patches to hit the beta every week until we find a good ground , they already have enough feedback to know what players want , give us what we want and not what they want , they already gave us their version of diablo and it failed , this time they should give us what we want.

    I am not going to cancel my pre order , because I believe they will support this game to their last breath , it is not just about diablo now , the name of the company is at stake here and they wouldn’t want a failure like this , they are praised for having the best games on PC and they will want to keep that reputation.

  5. Can’t agree with the synopsis of these lengthy critiques, currently playing a fresh hardcore witch doctor in Torment 1. While I agree that the legendary/set drop rate could be *a bit* higher (~0.3 to 0.5 times better than it currently is), RoS is imo an awesome new base for Diablo 3 and future developments, plus, the 5th act is just gorgeous in every respect. Before this new base is polished, we are certainly looking at another 12 months of developments *on the live servers*, incl. fixes, rebalancing, and further additions.

    RoS is really a great update, perfectly designed for casual gaming as well as exciting ladders/tornaments for the hardcore crowd. It’s worth every single penny, and if you want Diablo 3 to become a better game, then just buy this expansion! ^^

  6. Well said Drothvader and TheTias. I do not agree with everything said, but they really hit the main points.

    I really hope the devs are listening right now and making plans for the post release patches as that’s where we will see the proof.

  7. Echoing previous posters, thanks for posting this. I really hope the devs read those posts AND take meaningful action to address some of their critiques. I think I’d have to say that the most discouraging part of ROS (at least based on the above critiques) would be the lackluster crafting system. The crafting system in D3V is far from ideal…in fact it’s pretty crappy (redeemed a little by the 1.07 recipes). I wasn’t overly impressed by it when I leveled my first characters (back in May/June ‘012), but when I first started some HC characters back in August the lameness of the system was incredibly apparent.

    In ROS, not only are the crafted items most likely less than ideal (unless you get a really lucky roll), not only are the items restricted by the primary/secondary stat segregation, not only do crafted legendaries/sets not have “special” stats, but you’ve now got even more types of crafting materials you need to acquire. I think crafted items should have more value if they’re going to be in the game at all…maybe have affixes/effects not available elsewhere. The bonuses for sets might be worthwhile, but trying to find/stockpile all the mats needed will be a chore and definitely strain player inventory/stash resources.

    Personally, I know I’ll be playing ROS for quite a while, mainly because arpgs like the Diablo series are my favorite type of game. I tend to be very patient and take my time with games – I was never in a rush to try to max my levels in D3V, didn’t use the AH, was never concerned with trying to build a character that could play on MP10. I also greatly enjoy the actual combat in Diablo 3, especially with the ranged classes (DH/Wiz). That said, however, I am concerned with the cited problems looming in ROS, in part because if untended will damage D3’s longevity, and also will hurt the overall quality (which will catch up to even me at some point).

    I think there is hope that things will improve over time (get ready for a day 1 patch again folks!) – D3V did improve greatly post-launch, but it’s sad that Blizzard couldn’t see these problems themselves. Perhaps the best thing (as fans of the series) to do is to be even more vigilant and observant and post as much feedback as we can, since third party testing/feedback is far more thorough than what Blizz can do. The latest patch is evident enough – current level 60 characters couldn’t access Torment without a hot fix to solve the problem.

    That’s enough from me…cheers! =^-^=

  8. For me , i think they need to listen a little bit more to people, and do it quick… RoS need to be more innovative in lots of ways !!!

    Also they made a move that ( i think once again) that is going to make them justify every move …(by making a beta streamable !) So legendary drop rates are REALLY bad, and they said we where going to see 6X more legendary in ros but its not happening . Well explain why : We want to see how people are going to interact with rare, or whatever reason .. That is the downside of having a closed, but public beta test!An example of that is with new uber! Were having 100% drop rate because of X reason…

    Because right now, RoS is getting terrible publicity, people are starting to cancel there order(lol)and the overall mood for ros isnt good :/

  9. I agree with a lot of what they say, and I hope Blizzard listens to them.
    Even though I can play Expert difficulty on the beta, I prefer to play Normal as that feels a lot more fun for me.

    One of my concerns for RoS is gold actually. You hardly seem to get any, and with no AH it’ll be impossible to accumulate gold as we do now.
    They need to keep that in mind when adjusting crafting/enchanting costs. Enchanting especially can get quite expensive if you don’t roll the affix you want. Before this patch I spent nearly 700M gold trying to get a certain affix to roll (and failed at it) on ONE item.
    This might be fine for players coming into RoS with hundreds of billions put away, but I personally never broke a billion in vanilla, and it’ll be even worse for players who only start out in RoS. They probably won’t be able to afford much of anything.

    • Since not every copy of the game has mousepad (like D2 had, back in the days) and CE is limited – that’s why 🙂

  10. finally, even the mvps stop living in denial.

    i really wonder, the people who are left playing, do they really play because it’s fun for them to play, or because of peer pressure and “but it’s a diablo game and it must be good?!”

    • Since before release it was always because “it’s a diablo game and it must be good?!”.

      We were all in denial. 🙁

    • I play because I like to play Diablo 3, not because it is Diablo 3.
      However, I hope they will make the game more difficult than it is now. I saw people in the beta allready on Torment 5 and that means that it is easy to beat the game in 2 months. Once you have reached Torment 6, no goal is left.

  11. Drop rate and CC sucking… Long time reported from testers. It is curious that they did not already address it.
    Enjoyed the part “Hey bliz, stop listening to people whining about hellfire rings and uber… Listen to normal players…”

    • CC can be completely negated with 5 items and it only requires secondary stats. MVP’s don’t necessarily know better, their post has to be treated like any other player’s. Wall of text + green font doesn’t automatically make a good argument.

      To be clear, I think they raised many valid points, but the CC issue isn’t one of them.

      • The hell the CC isn’t an issue. It’s one of my biggest peeves about the game. It’s complete BS to not have any control of your character and be knocked around like a pinball.

        People whined and complained about Invulnerable Minions, but this wasn’t an affix that needed to go. Anyone with player skill could easily manage this. Vortex of the other hand is complete BS. And don’t tell me player skill could avoid it. I always kept my escape skill in reserve for this damn affix, but a lot of the time to no avail.

        Fighting molten/desecrator as your life drains, manually reposition to continue the fight (player skill), get vortexed right back to where your were standing (bullshit), pop your healing and your escape skill to heal and reposition to continue the fight (player skill), just to be insta-vortexed right back into the molten/desecrator and killed because your healing and escape are on cooldown is the most fucktarded bullshit there is.

        • Butchers Vortex should be an example for this affix. Current version feels a little like a cheat. As I was playing melee builds (or Barb) this didn’t affected me in any way but I can understand the problem here.
          Though I don’t like the damage from CC more.

          • You mean his hook? The Butcher has a fairly strict ability rotation, he’s very predictable. Any time he’s about to use his hook move sideways. With ranged classes the fight can be finished without taking a single point of damage.

            I don’t really like the fact that CCs do damage now either, but so far I didn’t die just because of this change.

          • 1m toughness does it’s job 🙂
            Yes, I was talking about the hook. You can dodge it, and that’s what could help Vortex. You still had to change your position, so that would disrupt the fight, but at least you could dodge it. But as said I never had problem with Vortex, so maybe I’m not the right person to say anything.

        • Vortex has a cooldown. You can avoid it by positioning in a way that puts an obstacle between you and the monster when you know the enemy can use it. When you can’t do this (open areas) you have to rely on your recovery stats to weather the storm and use your defensive cooldowns only when it’s absolutely necessary and not the first time you get Vortexed.

          Desecrator should rarely be a problem if you move well. If you get CC’d in it and can’t take the damage then it’s time to use your cooldowns. This where being smart about your items help a lot as well, because you can have CC immunity even with Rares only (possibly even with Magics).

          In many cases damage from Molten is unavoidable, but that’s why its damage is relatively low. If it hurts, then it’s time to get better gear. Use unavoidable damage as a benchmark for your defensive stats.

          Droth complained about gear checks, but they were always a part of Diablo and most ARPGs I’ve played. Player skill matters in these games, but only to an extent. The most important thing is to choose the right items and right abilities and then to time them well.

          • In fact, I don’t care that much about vortex or jailer. My main problem is with walls in narrow places which really blocks you for a long time.

        • Vortex is ridiculously easy to avoid.

          1) If you see a vortex mob, go somewhere with level geometry. Always stand such that there is geometry between you and your opponents.

          2) If necessary, rotate around the geometry while doing damage, such that there is never a straight line of vortex between you and your enemies. Against a champion pack, you may need to reposition to another piece of geometry in case you are exposed.

          By doing this, you can make sure your escape skills have sufficient availability, because enemies will burn most vortexes on nothing. In addition, these things are helpful:

          3) If you time your escape skill well, you will negate an existing vortex “pull” on you. This allows you to get more distance and not be pulled into floor hazards.

          4) Vortex will “break” if you are sufficiently far away after the “pull” animation finishes, even though it started when you were in range. With ranged classes, it is relatively simple to always stay far enough away that you can escape the “pull,” and you can still do DPS since most projectiles go off-screen.

          Invulnerable minions had a few problems that made it untenable:

          A) Cases where the pack would split and you’d never see the elite, only his minions.
          B) It severely neutered anything relying on procs, leech, single target skills, and so on.
          C) Unlike pretty much all the other affixes, level geometry hurt the player with this one, because it was possible to spawn in a level, and run into an Invulnerable Minions / Horde pack right at the entrance. The elite may be out of AoE range, with no way to actually get to him.

          It could’ve been nerfed to be more like PoE’s (minions don’t die, but you can still hit them and proc/leech off of them), which would’ve made it better, but eh.

          • All of that relies on being in a place with level geometry (often not possible because many areas are open) and being able to get that level geometry between yourself and the mob (often not possible because mobs can be on both sides of you). It needs to be avoidable in situations where these things aren’t possible.

            On a sidenote, the tons of floor spam have the same problem where in some situations (ie. small, tight spaces) it can become literally impossible to avoid. It can get impossible to not be standing in *something*. And that something is probably deadlier than almost everything else in the game for some reason.

          • “being able to get that level geometry between yourself and the mob (often not possible because mobs can be on both sides of you)”

            In that case you have to reposition. As a ranged class you should rarely be content standing in one place when you are surrounded by Elites (Vortex or otherwise). Your goal should always be to have the Elites in one general direction, away from you. Making sure of this is more important than doing damage to them.

            “the tons of floor spam have the same problem where in some situations”

            In tight dungeons you can indeed get into hairy situations with ground AoE spammers if they also have some form of CC. The caves in Act 1 are especially dangerous in these cases. If you don’t have a safe place to stand it’s best to retreat a few screens. Basically in situations like this your best bet is to kite the Elites and abuse the fact that it’s harder for them to surround you.

            Things can get extremely tricky when you find such enemies parked near a newly entered level’s entrance. What I usually do in cases like this is start kiting into the unknown. It’s very rare that multiple Elites spawn near each other in levels like this and I can usually handle the normal enemies even with the Elites breathing down my neck. When you have a few screens of movement space cleared of enemies start kiting back and forth.

            If I’m playing HC and the Elites are extremely dangerous (Poison Enchanted, Desecrator, Frozen, Teleporter qualifies for this category :)) then I just go back up the level entrance and restart the game. Retreat is always a valid option.

          • The butcher has fixed affix and I think it is properly balanced. However, as I like to kite, I do not like the enrage timer.

          • You cannot always retreat. With a DH and enough discipline and +speed runes, it is easy. With a wizard, once your teleport is on cooldown, elite monsters which are inherently fast quickly go back to you. And I found teleport less and less working with the patches. Maybe diamond skin is better in RoS (even without CM) but as it stops a fixed amount of damage, I don’t think it is viable in high Torment level.

          • “Maybe diamond skin is better in RoS (even without CM) but as it stops a fixed amount of damage, I don’t think it is viable in high Torment level.”

            High Torment levels are messed up with the current itemization, period. With CB things were better, but now that we don’t have it players shouldn’t expect to play on T2+ without some ridiculous item and skill combos. TheTias’ math shows just how messed up things are and I think it’s quite clear Torment needs to be rebalanced, unless CB returns. We are still in the beta though, where the itemization may go through sweeping changes, resulting in issues like this.

            About Diamond Skin, it may stop a flat amount of damage, but it still scales with out gear, because in damage calculations its shield effect takes place after damage reduction already took effect. The new shield procs of the Wizard work the same way and they are actually very powerful defensive options.

            “You cannot always retreat.”

            True, some combination of Elite mods are very effective at preventing you from running away, but if you very often run into enemies that you have to flee from then your gear is clearly lacking. At the very least, you always have the option of reducing the difficulty if finding better gear proves to be too tough.

          • “but if you very often run into enemies that you have to flee from then your gear is clearly lacking”
            I like a ranged build which is more efficient when I am far from monsters. I’m hardly short of escape skill (a DH really has a lot of escape skill some without cooldown and some without discipline cost, the problem is more critical with the wizard which is more semi-ranged than range) but this occurs sometimes when RNG has me fight again multiple CC affixes (to me, the worst one is waller in narrow places because you can be stuck for a minute).

    • The mainstat being a 1 to 1% damage multipler is the main problem not crit hit damage as this vary greatly in d3v for a level 60 from 2000x to 3500x multipler, never mind ros where it can go in excess of 10000x multipler. It is the biggest variable to damage output by factor of 5 to 20 over crit damage.

      The mainstat damage multipler really needs to be ruduced by a factor off 100 so that in d3v a level 60 would get 20-35x damage multipler or at an exponentionally decreasing rate

  12. I posted previously about how you get hidden reduced magic find if you do not buy ROS as A JOKE.


    Bobby is DOING IT!!!

  13. Some good points from all. I hope the drop rate issue is sorted out but I think they’ll need to fine tune it once players get a hold of the game after a couple of months.

    I don’t think BOA should be included if the AH is disappearing, would rather have Diablo 4 then suffer because my friend got the one legendary I like, but he can’t drop it on the floor. Seem even the mightest of Nephalem got screwed their despite saving the world.

    I’d also like to see the animations from the 2008 demo put in, like the character death animations, Monk’s relfect projectiles and some finishers on mobs would be nice as well.

  14. You have such an amazing base for a game, but it is a continual disappointment given how little consideration there is for psychologically motivating a player to continue playing your game.

    That really sums up the whole of Diablo 3 quite nicely. Blizzard spent of ton of time polishing polishing polishing the basic combat mechanics, but they have very little clue about how to approach the rest of the game’s design.

  15. Droth’s entire post can be summed up as, increase drop rates goddammit! Which, as much a problem as it is, is hardly doomsday speak. It’s not like they haven’t increased drop rates a dozen times before when it was warranted. Tias makes some valid points however, though I kind of skimmed that, will read more when I have some time.

    But Droth took a hell of a lot of time and hand-wringing to state something pretty simple.

    • Kinda, and that point is almost universally agreed upon by the community. It isn’s hard to fix either, as it can be done by adjusting a few values. It may still happen before release. Saying things like “Please save ROS.” is way too premature and overly dramatic, given that RoS doesn’t really exist yet.

      Reading TheTias’ post however is worthwhile, he has many good points about the current state of the game.

        • I’d contest it on some points if I had the time to write a similarly well-written reply, but yeah, he hit the nail on the head about many issues.

  16. Haven’t pre-purchased RoS and will not unless things improve.

    I do not feel like rewarding blizz anymore for mediocrity or worse, incompetence.

    I very much like the Diablo Franchise…. I mean the books are great, d2 was awesome etc, but it feels like the dev team hates us.

  17. Very interesting article. I’m done with Diablo for some time already, beacuse
    for me the game sucks,but I continue to visit this site every day. I think is far more interesting to spend my time here,reading some interesting news and players opinions,than waisting my time in the game.
    I don’t have any plans to buy RoS atm. This is subject to change,if Blizz manage to fix the problems. That’s why I’m here every day.To listen podcasts and read articles:)

  18. While Dorth complain essentially means “increase drop rates”, it’s Dorth complaining. Dorth agrees (and explains, mind you)with unthinkable stuff, like lower monster density being ok. That’s why that post is shocking, some sort of red alert.

    If Dorth is having second thoughts…

    I’ll buy it anyway. Imo, the worst issue with D3 – since beta – is the (lack of) movement speed. When I played the open beta I found the game terrible and almost never bought it because of it (and AH, and no offline mode).

    Since they are removing AH and I’m living better than I thought with always online, I think I’m fine with the game, probably because I wasn’t really expecting anything since beta.

    When you look at this game with zero expectations, even PTR is kinda cool. Except my barb was working without LS on Master and got insta killed on T1. On the other hand, my budget DH is doing fine with his 3 wolves – you just have to keep adapting the build on the fly, based on stuff you find on the ground. It’s kinda fun. It looks like something to do – reach higher torment. In theory. If possible.

    When you look at this game with Diablo expectations (totally justified, obviously), oh well…

    • “If Dorth is having second thoughts…”

      … then that means that one player is having second thoughts. Many people do in fact, Droth isn’t special. His opinions should be treated just like any other player’s. Ignore the green text and think rationally about his arguments.

      I don’t know why he likes the reduced monsters density, but it has clearly positive effects on the game. I like it because it makes small AoE and single target skills viable again. It should be balance of course by increased drop rates, which we had initially.

  19. The quick fix to this mess is.

    1. Reduce Monster Hp by a laaaaarge amount. A good baseline is.

    *Thrash mobs should be killable within one second.
    *Harder mobs like Grotesques should be killable within 2-3 seconds
    *Elites should be killable within 10-15 seconds.

    This is a fun hack and slash phase and how I think the game is meant to be played. What they have now on tornment 3-6 is a disaster. Several minutes to kill one pack, if you are not using broken % of life dmg affixes.

    2. Increase drop rate.


    Rest is just tweaking and balancing.

    • “Elites should be killable within 10-15 seconds.”

      Elites should simply drop much better loot compared to normal enemies. The problem is that I actually like longer fights, but the rewards don’t scale up very well, which is why slaughtering normal mobs became the best way to find items in Classic D3.

      “What they have now on tornment 3-6 is a disaster.”

      Yep, but Torment didn’t change since the initial F&F beta and Crushing Blow was still in the game back then. In my opinion it’s unreasonable to think that Torment won’t be rebalanced if CB or something similar won’t be in the game (and not just on one Legendary).

    • There is no quick fix. The idiots designed a game where weapon damage, primary stat, and CH-damge determines damage; items in every equipment slot have +300 to +800+ primary stat on the high-end; and monsters have 44,000,000,000 hit points to handle the case where people put together a setup with all +800+ stat spawns.

      One would think that needing a 64-bit integer to store hit point values would be a red flag.

  20. I’m a bit torn on comments about legendary drops. On one hand, those that were invited to F&F beta have more experience with RoS. On the other, for a long time they had been pretty much showered in legendaries. Any decrease would feel terrible after that kind of experience.

  21. RoS is definitely way better than Classic. Drop rates (at least in campaign mode) are too low – easy fix. (I would also love rain of legs for leveling (lvl 1-40) chars)

    Though stuff like Split-farmning, emeralds high CHD (overall CHD is way too high), leading to insane health pools (but than I’m not heavily geared so my opinion do not have to be valid) are problems devs should think about.

    Splitting stats into Primary and Secondary? Best idea. You can’t get trifecta cause you need some life regen? That’s how it should be.

  22. I liked D2 more with Armor affecting chance to be hit instead of reducing dmg by % as in D3.

    Funny how itemization and generally balancing felt better for D2 than it does for D3.

    • Armor affecting chance to be hit is the most unreasonable ideas in RPG’s. How can this work? I’m wearing Full Plate Armor and I’m harder to hit than swift guy in leather strips? Besides Diablo had no armor! He was Huge and I could not hit him? That’s just stupid. It’s good that it’s gone.

      • Think of it like “chance to be hurt” and it’ll make more sense. Diablo’s hide was thick enough to stop most attacks. Increasing your attack rating meant you were more likely to hit him where it hurts.

        • That has more sense, yes. But then – zombie? I simply believe that this stat is artificial. I clicked enemy so I expect to hit him. Other way I would clicked him different way 🙂

  23. I will cut straight to the point.


    I want to make every class on hardcore to 70. Try out different builds. I want to try shield barb, dual wield barb, 2h barb, THROWING barb, COTA barb with CD redux gear, melee wizard, nuke wizard, support, summon WD, nuke WD, CC wd.

    I WANT TO HAVE FUN. With bad droprates how am I going to have fun? I want to kill monsters in new and interesting ways. NOT FARM 10H DAILY TO MAYBE HAVE FUN SOMEWHERE IN THE FUTURE.


    And still no 3v3 arenas. Bah! Not gonna buy ROS until its price is seriously lower.

  24. I knew RoS was going to be a disaster the day they announced BoA. It’s not exactly that I felt BoA was impossible to implement in a way that made sense and worked for the game but that it was clearly not the right decision for a Diablo game.

    I have been visiting here regularly to follow the news to see if things might change for the better but I haven’t been following the details at all. I’m surprised to see Droth responding the way is did here as back in the day when I would follow the forums closely he spewed rainbows and unicorns of praise for anything and everything Blizzard did even when nearly everyone else in the community disagreed. The fact that he turned has revealed to me that the rest of the community is beginning to open their eyes and the game hasn’t even released yet.

    TheTias was always a great poster and could reason a great argument for or against any game system so it’s great to see each point explained in detail. As I said I haven’t followed the details so it is nice to see just how bad it has become. I figured if the initial positive feedback was consistent that I might consider RoS after a price drop at some point but it looks like it might see the same failures at release as vanilla and surprisingly they’ve managed to find an entirely different set of reasons for such.

    It’s a bit of a shame really that even in their attempt to redeem the game it appears to have sunk even further. At least they have one more expansion to try again right?

  25. Sat here and read the whole thing and there’s one thing that gets me much more than the rest.

    Splitfarming? Really?

    The whole point of playing in a group is to play WITH your group. If groups don’t play together, the whole fun of multiplayer is gone.

    That one thing right there kills any interest in RoS for me, as Diablo has always been about multiplayer fun, for me.

  26. It all says… “I don’t know what I want, but I want it. Now.”

    Everyone was singing RoS praises and had pitchforks for D3V, now they realize they actually liked D3V and now hate RoS.

    Of course I can agree that some points are valid, but there is also great things coming.

    As a point of concern: with no AH and hundreds of legendaries and ways to build your gear, where are we going to put it all?

  27. I don’t envy blizzard’s job here. People expect a game they can play for years that always feels rewarding and is a one time purchase. I’m not sure you can make such a game today. Gamers have been exposed to wow and freemium type games with ongoing revenue streams and continuous content improvement. D2 was so long ago that people seem to confuse it with more recent games. Or they simply don’t remember d2 clearly.

    The whole foundation of diablo is automatic content generation via randomization of maps and monsters. I fear that entire premise is simply not enough for gamers today. They want crafted experiences with well structured content with well paced rewards.

    I personally won’t get the expansion until I see reviews from people who have played the final version a few months.

    • “The whole foundation of diablo is automatic content generation via randomization of maps and monsters.”

      No it is not. The foundation of Diablo (2) is creating your character with classic or super crazy builds with skill points, attributes and items. Randomization (levels, items) was only a part of that. That is why D3V has so small replayability.

      • Well d2 and d3 both force you to limit the skills that can be used to kill monsters. I disagree that the character building is better in d2. The vanilla itemization is definitely inferior in d3 compared to d2:lod. But the skills in d3 feel better to me.

        What I was trying to get at is the unrewarding feel of d3 compared to d2. I’m not sure that it is d3 being inferior to d2 in this regard. I think it has more to do wih present day gamer experiences and expectations vs what they were ten years ago.

  28. QUOTE

    CC can be completely negated with 5 items and it only requires secondary stats. MVP's don't necessarily know better, their post has to be treated like any other player's. Wall of text + green font doesn't automatically make a good argument.
    To be clear, I think they raised many valid points, but the CC issue isn't one of them.

    It should not be possible to completely negate CC with items. That in itself sounds really broken. MO so than any CC in the game. We are back to the silliness of WW spec then.

    The big problem with CC right now seems to be that relatively few skills breaks CC, pushing you toward a very slim skill selection.
    Blizzard should add CC-breaking to more of the defensive skills/runes.

    The new legendary potions could also help. One of the potions allows you to run through Waller. Why not either let it break Jailer too. Or add another that breaks Jailer.

    In the end the main issue is the 2-3 CC abilities that are either unavoidable or a bit too random to consider them avoidable; jailer, vortex and to a lesser degree waller. They all has some chance to screw you over, even if you do everything you can to play it safe.

    • As it turns out, it’s not possible to fully negate CC’s with items. I forgot that the CC reduction stat has diminishing returns as well. The maximum you can get is 67.23%, unless some Legendaries carry more than 20% or in slots where it can’t spawn on Rares.

  29. QUOTE

    While Dorth complain essentially means "increase drop rates", it's Dorth complaining. Dorth agrees (and explains, mind you)with unthinkable stuff, like lower monster density being ok. That's why that post is shocking, some sort of red alert.
    Dorth happens to be kinda right when it comes to lower monster density.
    1.0.8 was a band-aid fix that added its own problems instead of the ones it fixes - in particular the AOE skills being grossly overpowered compared to single-target. 
    Sure it was an improvement overall compared to the game that came before 1.0.8, but that hardly means it is remotely close to being perfect or acceptable solution.
    The real issue in PTR and pre-1.0.8 is not so much monster density, but how spread out the monsters were.
    You should not have to run around looking for enemies.
    Monsters should be spread like this:
    Not like this:
    Then each of them should be substantially harder than they are today.
    The quick fix to this mess is.
    1. Reduce Monster Hp by a laaaaarge amount. A good baseline is.
    *Thrash mobs should be killable within one second.
    *Harder mobs like Grotesques should be killable within 2-3 seconds
    *Elites should be killable within 10-15 seconds.
    Really disagreeing here. It is perfectly fine if an elite pack takes 30+ seconds. Even 60 sec+ if you have to kite it etc.
    As for 2 minutes, no that should not be the case, but not like people have found perfect gear in the beta either.
    Im in favor of decreasing HP though, but mindless fast kill speed? no thanks.
    I mean, why have white mobs in the game if they die within 1 second.
    As HardRock mentions, elites just need to offer appropriate rewards oin terms of XP and drops. Kinda goes for "big normal mobs" too.
    Splitfarming is such a sad thing.
    Blizzard claims they want D3 to be a multiplayer game. How the hell can you go ahead and implement something like the current bounty system (which I like) without adding measures to prevent the split-behaviour. 
    Not like it is new, it's a strategy as old as the genre. Hell, they already implemented the solution for it long ago.
  30. I really feel that the devs needed to throw everything PLUS the kitchen sink into RoS to save the franchise. They needed a full itemization change, a deep and engaging endgame, a superb and competitive PvP mode, a social and interactive trading system, and a fun & enticing Ladder/Season mode.

    I knew we were in for another heartbreak when they decided to only focus on TWO of these pillars, which was itemization and endgame. It makes the expansion feel cheap, empty, unfinished, and rushed.

    To put the final nail in the coffin, they seem to have missed the bullseye on both re-itemization and endgame, even though they put all their efforts on these two items.

    Sad, very sad.

    • I think Xanth said on of the podcasts that he believes that Ladder will be introduced later. ANd this does make sense. Why you need ladder right now? After all it will feel like new ladder season when RoS will go live. After few months we’ll get ladder, reset and back to business.

  31. I just read the first part.
    Gotta say that if he feels the droprate is too low does he consider the droprate with 6-7million players and not the low thousands that play now. there will be trading involved so I don’t see how the droprate can reflect the full open game.

    But personally, Diablo 3 gives me No interest at all, I’m not even tempted to play it anymore. Geeeees almighty they’ve really destroyed this franchise.
    If they wanted 100% garantied money for this game they should scrap and start over with the core of Diablo 2 expansion. Skill tree, boss runs, big variation of speciality builds. Definitely a summoner build.
    Keep almost everything from that game which was and still is great, you can’t go wrong with it.
    Just update the graphics, make lots of effort to keep bots, scams and third party sellers away without forcing an auction house. Don’t keep the 100% elemental resistance on mobs. Do implement new stuff but not so much that it breaks the core of MF runs. Do have ladder resets to give players a “new” chance.

  32. A lot of The Tias arguments are basically balance tweaks. It’s important and great he’s broughten it up in such fashion, but to say, “There’s no way this can be balanced, it’s over…” just seems, yet again, over-reaction.

    The HP bloat isn’t from CD, it’s from the fact they thought CB could be a balanced affix, and seemingly haven’t gotten around to making those last tweaks to sane HP levels. (Those CB tuned HP levels should have been a big red sign from day one, but w/e)

    Reducing HP levels would do a lot to allow for players to stack more defenses, which in turn makes all the unavoidable crap more bearable. Balancing the requirements for players to kill at a reasonable pace versus how much defensive stats they can stack, creates more breathing room overall.

    This isn’t hard-coded, unchangeable stuff he’s talking about here.

    But all that said, I enjoyed his post, and, WTF BLIZZ. 😛

    • Nope, it’s actually impossible to tweak things like drop rates, HP, and quest rewards. Even though this patch is still ~2 months from release, all these numbers are locked and final and will never be changed. Everything that is bad right now will be bad forever and nothing good will ever happen again. Diablo is doomed and burn Blizzard effigies in ritual protest.

      • I think you’ll find this is more true than you’d like to believe.

        Once a company labels a day as a release date there’s a lot of pressure to make the day rather than to make a good game. Even Blizzard, which generally does this less than other companies, would rather not announce a day in the first place, but once they do, they tend to stick to it, especially since Activision took over.

        And post-release development is always, always less than pre-release development. Right now they’re pushing for the ‘gold’ copy that they release to vendors, which means as small and few changes as possible so they don’t break anything that isn’t yet broken. No new features, they’ve already written up their advertising and can’t add anything else. Even the smallest of general quality-of-life improvements wouldn’t be included at this point unless they were already partially under development and maybe not even then.

        Even what seems like the simplest numbers of all, like drop rates, probably won’t change. They’ve reached the point where they are changing one thing at a time and testing, making the smallest changes possible, and then extensive testing before doing another small change.

        There just isn’t enough time, with this “tiny steps” development design, to fix all the issues that remain, before launch. Post launch? Maybe. You saw how all the launch issues of D3V were ‘handled’ post launch. Like PvP for instance.

  33. I know it’s just a beta, but sheesh. Talk about dropping the ball. Can we just have Act 5 and The Crusader added to patch 1.08, and you can push the release of RoS to 2020, when you MIGHT figure out how to make fun games again?

  34. QUOTE

    Azzure for D4 game director

    Now THAT would be something that could stop me from buying the game 😀

  35. Its very ironic that in order to streamline and simplify everything in the game the devs got themselves in a hole which they cant get out. Its amazing how they overly complicated this whole development, gathering so much feedback and try to tailor the game to these needs is BAD, to listen to people confused by Weapon Switch… what were they thinking? They should have a vision of what they want instead of flip floping through diferent design goals to appeal to everyone.

    Its probably something to do with their interal politics… “make the game for everyone so everyone can play and we get more money!” right now D3 is a design mess that is apealing to few gamers at this point when its just so surreal that this happened, Diablo was a simple formula that worked very well, how could blizzard screw up this badly? So many band-aids added post launch because they didnt know what it was supposed to be…

    Sometimes it feels like some random fan should control the development team for a week and it could set the game on track. I am all up for the developer to decide what to do with the game regarding some feedback, Icefrog/Valve operates this way on Dota 2, you can see they take feedback on count but they arent dominated by it, Blizzard seems to get all feedback and creates a mangled mess with that and bases the new decisions on that, without any personality or leadership.

    I think Josh Mosqueira saw what was already set in stone for the game and it would be too much work to change the core way too much, they are sticking to their guns, a Diablo 3 full rework wont come, it is what it is. And now with BoA, no endgame, no PvP, it just shows how RoS isnt the savior that everyone claimed it would be, remember? D2 wasnt great until LoD?

    • Lol, seriously?

      Your first paragraph: “They flip flop on various mechanics and game decisions in an attempt to appeal to everyone.”

      Your last paragraph: “Josh is lazy so he’s sticking with his original vision, which isn’t popular.”

      At least make a coherent critique. Your first three paragraphs contradict the last one.

      • He’s right tho. They are flip-flopping on the unimportant stuff (which obviously makes out their main focus), like drop rates in these rifts or bounties or whatever they are called, while the roots of the problems remain untouched, like mainstate predominance and broken itemization in general.

        • That’s because they’re relatively happy with the affix system and the itemization, which is clear because they’ve had something like 2 years to rehaul it now and haven’t.

          They’re flip-flopping (iterating, to use Blizzard speak) on the stuff that’s easily changed (quality of life stuff) while remaining firm on their vision for the game. They’re not actually trying to create a game that will please everyone, they’re just decking out their vision for an ARPG (heavy on the A, light on the RPG) with some extra trimmings.

          • I agree with your statement, however it’s just too bad that their “vision of an ARPG”, as you put it, sucks donkey ass and is inferior to any other modern and even aged ARPG in almost every aspect. Right, they won’t please everyone with it, but as it seems as of now, they are pleasing nobody other than completely retarded casual players who have never played any other ARPG before and have zero sense of what a good computer game is.
            I’m saying this without any polemics, I really have no idea what kind of person would enjoy Diablo 3 in its current state. There is no character progression, no sense of real achievement because you can modify difficulty to your needs, no PvP, no trading, no social platform, no theorycrafting and build planning, and no crafting that earns its name.
            I guess a person who enjoys this game would be some low-iq hybrid of lottery player/masochist with too much freetime and low APM skills who likes to pick up shiny things from the floor if being pointed to.

          • (Can’t reply to you directly, so I’ll reply to myself, but this is indeed a reply to you.)

            In short: Come at me bro.

            I love D3. I love the Blizzard devs’ vision of D3. It is exhilarating to play an ARPG that allows me to integrate manual feedback while still generally zoning out or being able to split my attention. It’s great. I love it more than TL2, I love it more than PoE (which, eh, IMO), I love it more than BL2 (which I also love). So they’re pleasing me. Am I “retarded?” Well, you can call it as you see it. Am I casual? Sure. But oh no, a large share of the market enjoys a game made for a large share of the market! The horror, the horror! (For the record, I’ve played D1, D2, BL1, BL2, TL1, TL2, and PoE. So I’ve definitely played a fair share of ARPGs. And I still love D3. D3 is pleasing me. The horror!)

            So, I enjoy D3. Character progression? Meh. Modifying the difficulty? A brilliant, ingenious system that allows me to progress through difficulty at my own pace. I progressed, self-found, from MP1 to MP7 or so. It’s awesome. If I want to totally zone out and kill stuff, I can. If I want to actually be challenged and put myself in a situation where a couple of bad decisions will kill me, I can. “Real achievement?” I don’t know what that is in the context of a PvE game, but meh. PvP? I don’t care. If I wanted PvP I’d go back to playing fighting games competitively. Trading? Again, don’t care, I only want to play by myself unless I’m going to be playing a fighting game. Social platform? I don’t even know what that means, and I don’t care. Theorycrafting? You know what’s better for that? Games that don’t have action in them. Any turn-based game is going to be infinitely more interesting than an action game with theorycrafting, so I don’t need that jive in my ARPG. Crafting? Sure, I’d love better crafting, but it’s not like it’s a make or break aspect of an ARPG.

            I’ve never bought a lottery ticket or gambled at anything other than poker in my life. Masochist? Well, I guess I’m typing this post. Low IQ? I’m not going to brag or humblebrag, draw your own conclusions. (Also, IQ is a terrible measure of intelligence, FYI.) Too much free time? Oh no, like an hour to play a night, at most! How can D3 be both for “casuals” and “people with too much free time,” when the two are basically diametrically opposed? Low APM? Eh, probably. I suck at Starcraft. But I did play fighting games competitively for a few years, had a few regional tournament placements and a couple of wins. Shiny things? I looooooove shiny things!

            Again, come at me, bro. I love D3 and I don’t conform to your criteria.

    • Tbh I stopped reading at “I love D3”. It’s totally ok when you are enjoying a product you paid for. Everyone has the right for bad taste. You sure will have enough server capacity for yourself and no problems logging in due to bnet being overcrowded once RoS arrives. Have fun.

      • So, which is it?

        Do I have bad taste, or am I a “low-iq hybrid of lottery player/masochist with too much freetime and low APM skills who likes to pick up shiny things from the floor if being pointed to?”

        And if it’s totally okay to enjoy a product that I paid for, how can you be objectively convinced that said product that “sucks donkey ass and is inferior to any other modern and even aged ARPG in almost every aspect?” Clearly, something that is that horrible can’t be enjoyed by anyone, right? Except the class of sub-humans you expressed below, right?

  36. “D2 wasnt great until LoD?”

    You know, I really don’t want to be the cynic again, but this sentence could be rephrased concerning RoS:

    “D3 wasn’t bad until RoS”.

  37. Great article. I’m playing D# on the X-Box lately and I feel exactly the same as Drothvader, and if i glean most of what TheTias says, I’m with him too.

    And by the way, the term is not “By in large, its “By and Large.”

  38. QUOTE

    I don't envy blizzard's job here. People expect a game they can play for years that always feels rewarding and is a one time purchase. I'm not sure you can make such a game today.

    nonsense, that type of game can be made and without constantly shoveling endless products down players throats. however, those games won’t be made by blizz.

    Gamers have been exposed to wow and freemium type games with ongoing revenue streams and continuous content improvement.

    sure, but blizz chose to target that audience. obviously, you wouldn’t make the game you described for an audience whom has demonstrated they have no patience or desire to experiment, explore, discover, fail, practice and learn. apparently, it’s because their kids just set the house on fire and they’re at work 23 hours a day and only have an hour to smash, crush and pulverize monsters.

  39. I’m surprised anybody would say that it’s difficult to gear your follower. A level 1 mule can craft & enchant things, so even if your follower uses a different main stat than you that’s not a problem at all.

  40. I don’t know how many people remember this, but short after D3 vanilla was released, and after a few patches, there was a mass-quitting amongst some prominent D3 community members, and they complained of very similar things to these MVP’s (Blizzard living on another planet, doing the exact opposite of what the feedback is suggesting etc).

    I completely understand their frustrations with Blizzard, and I feel the same way.

    • D3 2nd expansion main feature:

      Exactly the same game, but now with 5 million main stat on armor pieces. We want new players to be exactly the same as players who are dumb enough to level to paragon 1000.

  41. I really have no idea what kind of person would enjoy Diablo 3 in its current state. There is no character progression, no sense of real achievement because you can modify difficulty to your needs, no PvP, no trading, no social platform, no theorycrafting and build planning, and no crafting that earns its name.

    It may shock you to hear this but there are many games of many sorts that have literally zero of these things that people enjoy. In fact, it may shock you to hear, that most games people love have few of these things. Oh, but those games aren’t, ARPGs, right, I forgot. That means that the rules of what is or isn’t fun are completely different than every other type of game ever for reasons I will never understand.

  42. Why would he need a new mouse when he is clearly just a casual console player who hates “real” fun (real being defined as whatever D2 was)!1


  43. ROS sounds like Windows 8 release.

    Big corporation adds a bunch of new ‘functionality’ that actually makes it worst.

    • Not quite. D3 is a redesign in almost every way, while Win8 only has minor changes. I use Win8 everyday and compared to Win7 the changes are negligible. The uproar about the Start Menu basically boils down to the fact that people didn’t like that the tile view replaced the list view. Functionally the two OS is almost identical.

      In my experience most people don’t like it when well established traditions change, regardless of the reasons for said change. We also tend to forget how these traditions came about. Case in point, after Win3.1 many people hated the new Start Menu in Win95 for years. Win3.1 had a simple Program Manager shell that showed all your programs as icons, just like any folder. Aesthetically it was very similar to what Win8 does with the Metro UI.

      I highly recommend reading this article about the evolution of Windows: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2012/05/18/creating-the-windows-8-user-experience.aspx

      Sorry for the off-topic post everyone. 🙂

  44. Imagine D2:LOD being released with the new graphics and engine, and ROS at the same time.

    Which one would you buy? Obviously if you have never played either, it is not a question for you to answer.

    I sincerely ask this and wonder people’s thoughts. My purpose is not to compare the two games, it is only to see if the Diablo’s PAST or the FUTURE triggering your enthusiasm (getting your d*ck hard).

    • I would bought both. And played each. But hey, how can a man handle more than one game at a time, right 🙂

    • Same as Mortalo, I would probably play with both. They are different games and D3 isn’t objectively worse. Many people don’t like the changes that happened between the two games, but conversely I’m sure that many people like D3 better that D2. Nobody has to play D3 and thankfully we have other great ARPGs on the market, many of which play more similarly to D2.

  45. QUOTE

    I will cut straight to the point.
    I want to make every class on hardcore to 70. Try out different builds. I want to try shield barb, dual wield barb, 2h barb, THROWING barb, COTA barb with CD redux gear, melee wizard, nuke wizard, support, summon WD, nuke WD, CC wd.
    I WANT TO HAVE FUN. With bad droprates how am I going to have fun? I want to kill monsters in new and interesting ways. NOT FARM 10H DAILY TO MAYBE HAVE FUN SOMEWHERE IN THE FUTURE.
    This is exactly what I want from ARPGs too - 
    The problem with stats/damage/CC is seondary to me, when I`m having fun and when I`m finding those "enabling uniques".
    Somebody in the topic posted (I think it was Jaetch) it took him one week (3-5hour per day = 20-40 hours) to complete full set during F&F beta and it seems too high for him. I disagree completely - It is fine value to me.
  46. It took me a FULL pint of coffee to read the two MVP posts in their entirely but the fact that they laid out CONVENIENCING bullet point examples with anecdotal evidence to back each point up was IMPRESSIVE. NOT just your typical “I want more RANT!” Although I play 10-12 hours a day dictated by household needs and outside appoints I do NOT strive for “perfect” hi-dollar gear. I play 90% iron borne and had used the AH on nearly every character I play. The AH beginning with the announcement of RoS went bananas so since last October I have become iron borne on all new characters. I make and play “my” account, my “wife’s” account since she abandoned Diablo after about 10 days after release, and the account my grandson begged me for when he thought he wanted to play but he too abandoned Diablo after a matter of hours for more time with girls… Anyway I have 22 level 60 toons and NONE are them have found their way to comfortable MP10 play sessions. I play all different classes in different builds but was NEVER “rich enough” (NO gold buying) to be able to afford to “build” characters in the 200-500k damage range. I’ve been disappointed in Diablo 3, not to the point of being “crushed” but still disappointed. I have come to enjoy “maintenance days” and playing Diablo 2 more than I thought because of what I “feel” is more game/character balance. I agree with EVERYTHING that has been said in the previous posts but me specifically I think maybe only one copy of RoS for me. What I have seen on just lvl 60 on the PTR has left me cold… ESPECIALLY with the amount of time I play, and NOT on MP10, I will NEVER have the “elite” gear to run rampart over the game so I just “play-along” at my character’s gear ability and kill more time than monsters. Diablo 2 SOURED me on public games and even though Blizzard has demonstrated to EVEN me that the hacking of players and the in-game PvP kills for gear is NOT in Diablo 3 I CAN’T force myself to give Blizzard’s cavalier attitude to protecting their intellectual property full support.
    It has reached the point that I too feel that with only a matter of days before Blizzard will be required to ship their new product it will be sadly lacking in polish and too tailored to the 1% of the squeaking wheels. BUT, I’ll be forced to keep playing because personally I have too much time invested in Diablo, Diablo 2, and now Diablo 3. I feel I’ll be left playing a semi-dead game that I can NEVER play at the highest level even LONG after the 1%’ers have long left searching for the “next new and improved game.” I guess that is why I STILL play D2 on a regular basis, huh, an old man playing a semi-dead game as we slowly die together.

    • You don’t think it’s even a little bit silly to say that you’re disappointed in a game that you play for 10-12 hours a day?

      I’m disappointed in the 1927 Yankees, they lost 44 games, damnit!

      Also, what one percent of what squeaking wheels? Pretty much everything they’ve done has been to broaden the game’s appeal and make it more accessible, how in the world can it be thought of as an exclusive, restrictive game?

      Playing on MP10, currently, is more a matter of using the right build and affixes rather than overall gear quality. You could probably easily grab some decent LS and DPS gear off the AH and solo MP10 right now.

  47. QUOTE

    thankfully we have other great ARPGs on the market

    We do? 🙁
    All A-RPGs so far seem to have some major flaws in one direction or the other.

    Sure, older games like D2 did so too, just easier to ignore back then since it was so new and different.
    But I’m really not impressed by the general quality of A-RPGs today.
    They tend to do some things great and other things terrible. Cant we ever get one that does some things great and everything else at minimum “okay” 😀

    • You may want to try BL2.

      It definitely has some serious issues, and it’s obviously non-isometric, but I picked up the GOTY edition in the latest Steam sale and I think it is absolutely fantastic at what it tries to do.

      • Yeah, Borderlands (it’s what you meant, right?) is on of my favorites. I’m just waiting for Gearbox to stop with the DLC release sillyness to start playing through BL2 in coop.

  48. Well I think there are a couple of perspective twists on some of the facts represented in the OPs.

    I can’t believe they are arguing about lack of finding gear for companions. Yes it is true that there are less drops for companions with a main stat opposed to your stat. However, they neglect to mention that your companion can be equipped to do like 100x the damage they could in vanilla. For most of my leveling a newb PTR DH, my companion was doing half my current damage and at level 60, I have been able to gear him up to nearly the same amount of damage as me. The key to finding gear for them is to check the vendors in town for items high in their mainstat. *done*

    I do agree that making normal gear more viable by salvaging it has had a detrimental effect on crafting because I feel it is wasted time filling up inventory when I can get decent gear from adventuring and combing the vendors. (i.e. having fun!) And this is stock PTR not RoS so bounties etal should help even further.

  49. You mean removing the 85% damage penalty? Well that’s nice, but even with prime stat * 2.5 they still only get 4 or 5 slots instead of 12 or 13.

    • The main limiting factor of their damage is still that they don’t attack continuously like players do. I don’t mind this at all though, I’m perfectly fine with them being supports with heals or CC.

  50. QUOTE

    The main limiting factor of their damage is still that they don't attack continuously like players do. I don't mind this at all though, I'm perfectly fine with them being supports with heals or CC.

    Actually, now that you mention it eDPS is also a factor. When they attack it’s mostly auto attacks with an occasional low damage high cooldown ability (only noteworthy on live because it bypasses the -85% penalty). Even half decent player builds have dps multipliers of 5, the good ones are 10 or more.

  51. Yet, you could run progman instead of explorer as your shell to get the Win 3.1 program manager instead of the start menu (progman.exe works until XP I think). In Win 8 it is not possible. Since the new start screen looks like Win 3.1 progman, I prefer win 8 UI.

    • Personally, I barely used the Start Menu in the past few years. My most used programs start with the system and run constantly in the background and the rest is on my taskbar. I rarely see even my desktop. 🙂

  52. Always disliked followers (I do my killing alone) and pets (stupid DH’s pet which engages treasure goblins). It would be nice to have a bonus for leaving them in town, but blizz has more important stuff to fix before…

    • “It would be nice to have a bonus for leaving them in town”

      There’s a bonus, you won’t have to listen to them. 🙂

      With the exception of Lyndon I really don’t like to listen to our Followers. I wish we could mute them.

  53. I haven’t played since last January and was looking forward to getting back .

    After reading that post I have decided against it . I normally buy the CE of everything Warcraft / Diablo , not this time .

    This time I will wait 6 months or so and see what happens .

    The game in it’s current state will not change , it’s about to go gold , they are still asking for feedback but really it’s useless at this point .

    No thanks .

    • “After reading that post I have decided against it.”

      Many people like the game as it is. Why not try the PTR? It’s free. It’s always best to decide for yourself when you can.

  54. QUOTE

    Always disliked followers (I do my killing alone) and pets (stupid DH's pet which engages treasure goblins). It would be nice to have a bonus for leaving them in town, but blizz has more important stuff to fix before...

    This nonsense is why we were stuck with that ridiculous 85% penalty to begin with.

  55. Each subsequent patch has diminished on that experience and failed to capitalize on the gains made by the new additions.

    After listening to each podcast, it sounds like this a lot . . .

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