Reaper of Souls itemization guru Travis Day returned to that giant forum thread where he dropped his item update info last week, and made a few comments about One-Handed vs. Two-Handed Weapons in Reaper of Souls. Comments I found baffling, but more on that after the quote:

    PS – What are your thoughts on 2h’s vs 1h’s at the moment?
    Travis Day: We are going to make some adjustments to 2handers, they could stand to be better. Not sure how much of a change we will end up making but we agree they are a bit lack luster atm compared to the 1h counterparts.

    Lets dig into the 2h complaints for a second. It seems to had discussed 2h vs 1h at one point in a previous design meeting and as a result investigated them relative to each other. The end result was that 2h are actually in a good place relative to 1h.

    So I’m curious what specific 2h vs 1h comparisons are people referring to? Are we talking 2h staves for Wizards and WDs vs 1h + orb/mojo? Or are we talking 2h axe vs 2 1h axes?

    I’m puzzled by this, since 2H weapons seem so far below viable in Reaper of Souls I thought it was intentional. The general DPS range of high quality rares or legendaries is around 2000-2300 for 1H vs. 2400-2600 for 2H. That doesn’t seem like enough of damage advantage for 2H to offset all the other added bonuses you can get from off-hand items like quivers or orbs or mojos, and if you dual-wield you get 2 sockets, the second of which is adding around 130% more DiabloWikiCritical hit Damage. As a result I’ve yet to see a 2H option for any of my characters in RoS that wasn’t at least 10-20% lower total DPS.

    1H vs. 2H on a 720k DPS Monk.

    1H dual wielding vs. 2H. Well-geared lvl 70 Monk.

    Two-handers in RoS can have much higher stat bonuses, and may roll double the LpH as well, but the loss of life steal, the fact that weapons no longer roll with Critical hit Damage as a possible mod (it’s found in small quantities as a special bonus on a very few legendary weapons), the fact that 2H never get two sockets, and their much slower swing speed (which results in many fewer proc chances) makes two-handed weapons, as currently construed, a poor weapon choice. (The only popular 2H weapons in Diablo 3, the DiabloWikiSkorn and DiabloWikiManticore, were both useful despite their very slow speed since they rolled with giant DPS, thanks to inherent Crit damage, huge stat rolls, and the Manticore could get 2 sockets while the Skorn could get life steal. All of those advantages are gone from 2H weapons in RoS.)

    But as I said, I thought this was intentional on the part of the devs since the Crusader has a passive skill that lets him wield a two-handed melee weapon in one hand. I figured the RoS devs had tried to balance 1H vs. 2H, found that impossible (carrying on the “2H sucks” tradition from D1, D2, and D3) said, “screw it,” then balanced the 1H vs. 2H purely for the Crusader to have a choice on weapons and passives.

    Perhaps I just haven’t seen it done right, since Travis seems to think 2H weapons are a much more viable option than anyone I’ve talked to.

    Do any of you guys have a good word for 2H weapons in D3 or RoS? Would you like to see them more viable, and if so, how? Bigger potential bonuses to all the key stats? Inherent Crit Damage or a chance for two sockets to match the crit granted by dual-wielding socketed 1H weapons? Other inherent bonuses to 2H weapons? Less emphasis on IAS to trigger powerful proc effects?

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