The Toughness (and DPS) characters display varies greatly between their Profile and their character window (AKA sheet or paper)), sometimes to a ridiculous extent. We’ve mentioned this numerous times and it’s a regular topic of discussion in-game and in the forums, but many players remain confused by, or unknowing of, just how big a difference there can be.
Sheet DPS is a better known issue, and we’ve had Blue Posts and votes about it. According to our recent vote, a slight majority (51%) of fans want an actual DPS meter, while virtually everyone wants a more accurate DPS display, one that at least includes Elemental Damage, +skill damage, and Damage to Elites. For their part, Blizzard says the incomplete or outright incorrect game displays are a feature, not a bug, and that we’ll be happier not troubling our little heads with those scary numbers.
Toughness isn’t as obviously buggy, at least going by the in-game display. It’s not like the game just randomly doesn’t include oh… Fire Resistance, when tallying your Toughness. (Though there are apparently a lot of bugs with “damage reduction” gear, vs. Elites.)
But what if you look at your character, or someone else’s, via the Profile, you’re likely to see very misleading figures for DPS, Healing, and especially for Toughness. Case in point, here’s the Profile vs. Sheet display for my EU Hardcore Demon Hunter, with both screens taken in-game, while standing in town with zero buffs in effect. One is viewing my character via the Profile, the other is via the Character window.
As you can see, the DPS and Healing are a bit off, but the Toughness is completely out to lunch, with my actual Toughness almost 3x the Profile display. What causes this? As best I know (and if someone has really tested it out, educate us in comments) it’s because the Profile view (which is what you see in-game Profile, and on the character pages if you use Blizzard’s Battle.net character database) does not include Paragon Points or Item Set bonuses.
My DH didn’t have a ton of Paragon points in defensive or healing numbers (I’ve been dumping everything into Gold Find since the last patch made that stat multiplicative), but at the time of that screenshot she had 2 items from 4 different sets, plus a Ring of Royal Grandeur. Thus she had huge three-item defensive bonuses from Blackthorne’s, Aughild’s, and Asheara’s sets, and those are included in the Sheet Toughness but not in the Profile Toughness.
Now one could argue (and I’m sure a Blue CM will) that this sort of thing is irrelevant. It would be a problem if the character window was lying and overestimating, since then players would feel weak and would get into fatal messes. But so what if the numbers are way low on DPS, and so what if the Profile shows all your main numbers much lower than they actually are?
It’s kind of a valid point. So what if the numbers are all wrong? You know what your character can do from experience, and you see and feel the improvement (or not) when you switch gear. The problem, I think, is when the up/down red/green arrows are wrong, which they very often are in terms of DPS, since they don’t include +skills, Elemental Damage, etc. And having the Profile numbers so far off is a problem in a co-op game like D3. We all like to peek at the gear on other players, and if you see someone in your clan kicking ass in Torment 5, and their profile says they have 1.3m DPS and 10 million toughness, and your character screen says you’ve got 1.1m DPS and 9 million Toughness, you might figure you can handle the difficulty they’re on! Of course they actually have 2.9m Elemental DPS and 17m toughness since the Profile numbers don’t include all the things mentioned at the start of this post, and when you try their difficulty you get slaughtered.
But hey, no biggie. Like the Blues say, Toughness and DPS are just meant to provide a quick snapshot of relative character strengths. Only noobs believe the numbers! Right?