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    One of those “playing HC is so different” threads popped up and got a chatty Blue reply. There’s no new info in it, but it got me thinking about play styles in the beta test or on the PTR vs. the “real” game when it goes live.

    How do you play HC?

    Your character is dead the minute you create it. Each minute you spend playing it is one minute closer to its demise and it’s also one more minute of valuable experience for you to learn from. So put everything you know into each minute you play that character. Play to the max. Whatever the build and whatever the gear. . .put it out there and play without fear.

    Got some cruddy gear and your friends want to bump up to MP8? Do it. Test yourself. I think a lot of people will be surprised by what they are capable of when pressed. (Actually I learned this from ActionKungFu many moons ago). There have been some instances lately that have really awakened me- and made me really rethink how I play this game. Something that I didn’t think possible after playing Diablo this many years.
    Grimiku: I like the general philosophy here, but you might not think so if you’re in my group. I’m always taking my sweet time to prep an attack, but I never back down from a battle once I’ve started it. I’d rather die with my boots on than die tired from running.

    Lately, though, I’ve been trying a bunch of builds to get ready for Reaper of Souls. Getting unexpected adds when trying a new build in Hardcore is a great way to get the adrenaline pumping (and test yourself).

    I played Hardcore almost exclusively for the past year or so, but I’ve been playing mostly softcore during the Reaper of Souls beta, and I was just talking to a friend in-game tonight and thinking how different the play style is. Part of it is the Beta/PTR aspect of things, where it’s not “real.” You copied over (and can recopy at any time) your chars, you know all your progress is just going to get wiped at some point, anything great you find is just temporary, etc. It’s all an exhibition, basically.

    That’s freeing in some ways and it’s why I’ve been playing mostly SC in the beta. I’m free to experiment, to try new builds, to push the difficulty level higher than is safe just to see how it goes, to build all glass cannon without paying attention to Toughness, etc. And yet… as the OP in the post above said, it’s really a different experience when things matter. You build and gear very differently (and with much more care/precision) and you really have to pay attention and take everything seriously, and try not to die.

    I imported my lvl 60 HC chars at the start of RoS back in the Friends and Family beta, and had some very memorable games and near escapes. I still clearly remember how my Monk died at level 70, in a long and crazy battle that was 10x more intense than any I’ve had since, that I was *this* close to surviving, (I got trapped in small area in the Panda Fortress by champs AND a boss pack, both wallers, with Arcane, Frozen, Plagued, and Poison Enchanted all in play.)

    I don’t mean this to be a whole testimonial for playing Hardcore, but I wondered how my experience compared to others. I don’t mean just about HC, but about playing in the beta or on the PTR; do you guys feel free to try whatever, new builds, new gear, higher difficulty levels, and does that really affect how you play? And if so, is that a good thing? Good for your fun, and/or good for generating useful test data?

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