I haven’t died at 70 in ROS yet, but the RNG gods have made Hardcore death far crueler than I could have ever imagined. I’ve played a lot of ROS since release and still lack a cushion of good gear for when I die. That’s worrisome and discouraging.

    tasker-theo-int1I’ve been off the writing grid the past few weeks (a few articles here and there) somewhat due to my schedule but mainly due to my incessant quest for a pair of Tasker and Theo (10k shards and counting!) and with each rift and massive amount of shards thrown at Kadala I’ve come to realize how harsh death will be.

    I thought almost two months into ROS I would have found most of my WD’s set and would be working on back up stuff in case he met his maker. However, in that time the only torment restricted set piece I’ve found was the thorns set( fairly useless on my WD) and my stash,while almost full, is empty of gear to help build back up. If I wanted the next WD to be prepared he’d find himself only with an extra Mask of Jerem and about a billion Magefists. While I’m sure the future WD will find new gear, my current experience makes that hard to believe.

    I’ve had only a handful of close calls in ROS, some due to horrible affix combos and some due to lag, but each time I find myself thinking not of the character but of the gear. I had said gear was going to be a huge loss when you died in ROS but the loot tables being the way they are makes death almost devastating. For example two of the pieces I’m striving for have a 2% chance of dropping( Tasker and Theo, and Starmetal Kukri); if hit the RNG lottery and snag them I’ll still be at the mercy of RNG if death befalls me. Since I haven’t seen either in almost 8 weeks I could only assume the future WD’s quest would be just as arduous.

    There in lies the problem with the system now. When I lost a high paragon character before I knew that with time I would get back to where I fell off. Now it feels like if I die I may never reach where I was before. This is a stark contrast to D2 or even d3 vanilla. Diablo 2 could have you up and humming rather quickly after a death, your items were important but you could survive well on your skills and build without elite equipment(or trade for it!). D3 vanilla had a longer trek back to paragon 100 but you could augment that journey with the AH and find items to help fill the coffers along the way. In ROS you are reliant on RNG and strive for builds and items and your only means of attaining them are in your own hands. Each time it doesn’t drop, doesn’t mean you’re getting closer to your goal, it just means you have to try again.

    That is what has made hardcore death go from something frustrating to soul shattering. That said I’m still playing( a lot).Maybe I’m a sadist, maybe I’m having fun, but I’m going to get those damn gloves or die trying…

    One Life to Live covers the Hardcore play and life style in the Diablo community. It is written by Xanth and published weekly. Post your comments below, Follow him on Twitter @HCXanth or contact the author directly. For all the archived news about Diablo 3 hardcore check our Archives!

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