Reaper of Souls End Game is Missing?


A fan brings up a fairly common argument/complaint that I don’t really understand. He says that Reaper of Souls “end game” is not enough, or doesn’t even exist at all. I’ll comment, but first here’s the quote and the Blue reply:

RoS has no endgame

So… What is endgame for you?

PvP?
Trading?
Ladder?

Vaneras: I have seen quite a lot of feedback on this topic already, and I am well aware of the various suggestions for endgame gameplay that have been posted on these forums as well as various other Diablo sites so far, but I still think this is a very good question because it is one that has many different answers 🙂

If you have answered this question already somewhere else, then there is probably not a need for you to answer it again. But if you haven’t answered this question yet, then I am very interested in reading your feedback. So, if you can, please try to answer the question using your own words: What is endgame for you?

I guess by “DiabloWikiend game” some people mean “a game feature that you can only access with max level characters.” If that’s your definition then no, neither D3 nor RoS have much of an end game, but of course neither did Diablo 1 or Diablo 2, so at least it’s consistent. Reaper of Souls has far varied game modes and activities than we saw in Diablo 3 (or D1 or D2) with the added DiabloWikiAdventure Mode and DiabloWikiNephalem Rifts, but since you can do those before max level, I guess they don’t count as “end game” material?

I am 100% in favor of additional game content, and I’d put a quality PvP system atop that list. (I’d prefer one based on skill and tactics rather than gear and paragon levels, with a selection of premade chars and solo dueling or team death matches, like we played and loved at Blizzcon in 2009 and 2010.) But it’s weird to say RoS had no end game just because there’s no major content that’s locked until you hit lvl 70.

It makes me curious… why would anyone want an end game of that type? If it’s a fun game feature, why wouldn’t you want access to it all along, rather than having to grind to max level before you get to do the cool stuff? Is it just an elitist thing, or do people really think dessert tastes better if they have to force down a plate full of brussell sprouts first?

Tagged As: | Categories: Blizzard People, Blue Posts, End Game, PvP

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  1. It’s funny how a lot of people complain about D3 being more like WoW, then ask for the exact kind of end game that WoW offers!

    Being a very casual player, for me endgame is “stuff I can do after beating the main quest”. Any kind of en game that requires me to do a fair bit of grinding (like raids in WoW) I’m just not going to do them and I’ll level up another class instead

  2. The argument for Diablo 3 endgame goes like this.

    In d2 if I remake my amazon, I can make an entirely new build therefore creating an entirely new gameplay experience. In D3 when I have a max level WD there is no reason for me to make another WD.

    If blizzard takes away that that level replay ability in making new characters with many different builds, than blizzard needs to replace that with some kind of end game. Grinding for gear, levels isn’t enough.

    Diablo 3 will be more like wow in this respect(not an insult, I enjoy wow) where the idea is to high max level ASAP so you can start doing endgame. In wow it is max level dungeons, PvP, Daily content. In Diablo the only thing you could stretch to consider an endgame is paragon levels, and grinding for items. But level grinding, and the item hunt is what D3 classic has in absence of character customization, and many people realize this is a problem.

    • This is a huge problem with D3 and I don’t know if developers are aware of this. If you create your game with MMO-ish design (only 1 character per class, linear gear), small content (from MMO perspective) and no end game (because you need to have end-game content in MMOs) you have a very big problem.
      In game like Diablo you need to have strong and flexible character building mechanic with tons of build possibilities, not 10 boring difficulties and mostly-useless skills with mostly-useless and boring rune effects. Diablo 2 did it, Titan Quest did it but Diablo 3 completely failed to do it.
      If they don’t recognize this as a problem the second expansion will feature Adventure mode 2.0 with 1 new short-sized-act, 1 new OP class, 10x more gold and xp rewards, new legendary gimmicks and 10x more damage multiplier and another 5 difficulty levels with enemies with 100bilions of health.

  3. I think you misunderstand what, at least, the Diablo players I know mean by end game. We want something do after we gear up. More ways to gear up just doesn’t cut it. I don’t want to farm just to be able to farm easier. In D2, that was PvP. The complete absence of anything resembling quality PvP has turned off nearly everyone I know (admittedly, my friends are old (in many respects) PvPers. I know we’re not alone, though–check out how dead your PvP forum is. By the way, this can be an activity for any level you want. Low level dueling, while not as popular as high level dueling, still had quite a following.

  4. End Game for me: What keeps you playing once you reached the max. level. Knowing you will find an awesome item at the next corner. New events, quests, gameplay options funny to play with.

    As I see, they did not solve itemization at all neither improved the end game, so just now, I would not buy RoS, not at full price not for 5€, because facts speak louder than words…and Diablo saga deserve the best…

  5. Having adventure mode available right from the start would be fine I think after completing the campaign at least once on a character. And I’m not against the thought of having nephalem rifts only becoming available post level 60 or something similar but in the grand scheme of things giving a player the choice of how he wants to level is good. However I’ve been watching many a beta stream and I feel that in it’s current state the game will become stale for most after a few months or less.

    I still play D3V to this day, on and off, but only because I’m still grinding out paragon 100, my single driving force as I feel there is absolutely no other reason to play right now. I fear the same fate for RoS.

    Adding something in line of the Infernal Machines could help, but with more frequency, say every 6 months or so, expanding the end game content incrementally.

  6. In MMOs, it usually require a longer period of time to reach max level and end game refers to all game modes/mechanics at max level.

    In Diablo 3, you reach max level in a few hours. You grind and grind but in the grand scheme of things, there is NO PURPOSE to the gear aqquired.

    In MMO, you constantly enjoy upgrading your gear for new content and also PvP.

    PvP in particular is very flexible (available any level) and competetive in the sense you always want to improve your gear to beat your friends!

    Tecnically speaking, RoS has absolutely no pvp and torment 6 would be its PVE endgame but honestly, it gets boring fast because you are still fighting the same stuff.

    We need hard to beat , unique challenges (even if it requires 4 players) that drops unique loots even if they have a weekly lockouts like the panda MMO. We need reason to grind for better gear. We want to fight that super epic dragon with Bobby eyes breathing fire and not the same damn
    re-coloured mobs with same abilities.

    • Also, 4+ years of feedback on PvP and we got brawling =D
      That is the results of ‘feedback’.

      They are showing signs of removing content/mechanics from RoS. We are already chewing on bones.

      Give them more feedback and they will take your bone away!
      I would rather hear some new bobby jokes from Flux.

      • “I would rather hear some new bobby jokes from Flux.”

        There’s one in the new podcast, somewhere near the end.

        And re: Brawling… you’re right, but it’s not like the devs said, “here’s the awesome perfect pvp system you’ve all been after!” They were pretty open about the fact that they wanted to do something awesome with PvP but didn’t have it yet, so they just patched in a simple system to enable pvp much as it existed in D2.

  7. If you have to force down a plate of brussel sprouts, then something is seriously wrong with your tastebuds.

    That said, I think the idea of wanting an ‘endgame’ is to have something cool to do with the best gear and the best stuff. Currently, there is only farming, same as D2 and most other ARPGs I’ve played. Monsters get easier to kill with better gear, but once you hit a certain point, the game starts to feel less important. Even if you are making progress with gear (i.e. you are still finding improvements), the improvements don’t feel as meaningful as they once did. The desire for an endgame is to have something to do that lets you use your full power as a max-level, well-geared character and still feel meaningful, beyond simply the acquisition of more and better gear.

    My personal feeling of what a good endgame for D3 would be is uber-boss fights and uber-levels. I am shamelessly taking the idea from BrotherLaz’s D2 mod Median XL, which I feel had the best endgame of any ARPG I’ve ever played. The uberquest system provided high-level challenges to players in the form of themed levels and bosses that felt different from the rest of the game. For example, the easiest uberlevel, Kurast 3000 B.A., was filled with skeletons, and totems that made these skeletons absolutely invincible. In order to progress through the level, you had to avoid the skeletons, kill the totems, and then kite the skeletons away from the other totems so that they would become vulnerable. In addition, there were 3 special Necromancer bosses that would rapidly summon more skeletons when you got close to them. When you killed the Necromancers, they dropped special Unique charms with powerful, important effects (every uberquest boss in Median XL had a specific Unique charm that was associated with that quest and could drop only from that boss). This provided a welcome game-change to well-geared players, as they needed not just good AoE skills (which most people use) but also good single-target skills, as without single-target, the skeletons would be invulnerable. At the same time, the charm at the end promised an incentive that would be relevant no matter what. This, to me, was what made Median XL such a fun game to play. The game itself was good, but the real fun was making your character and seeing how many uberlevels you could complete. Each level was very different, with different strategies and rewards, so completing each uberlevel with different builds was the real fun in Median XL.

    I personally would advocate a similar system for D3. In terms of rewards, charms are out, so that is impossible, but there could be uberbosses that dropped specific boss-associated legendaries or legendary plans. In addition, there could be a boss that granted a special skill (per class, one different special skill per class) to act as a special ‘uber-skill’ as proof that the character completed a special challenge. Other rewards could include artificially large gold drops throughout the level (i.e. gold drops in the 10k range) or with a larger-than-normal chance of dropping regular legendaries, in order to create specific places where you would go to farm for a certain in-game commodity.

    To me, though, the most important thing about this kind of endgame system is that the level should be challenging, it should be themed, and it should be tied in with the lore somehow. For example, as an idea, Malthael’s tampering with the Black Soulstone could have torn rifts in reality, rifts leading to alternate dimensions (AKA uberlevels). This would provide an opportunity for Blizzard to allow players to fight powerful bosses that are impossible to fight in-game, or participate in battles fought long before D3 takes place. For example, one such rift could take place in a dimension where Imperius was successful in convincing the Angiris Council to exterminate mankind, and the level would be a fight through Heaven against the angels, culminating in fighting Imperius as the uber-boss (with his spear, Solarion, as the legendary drop). Another rift could take you to the 5th battle of the Diamond Gates (in Act III dialogue, Tyrael mentioned that in that battle, the forces of Hell nearly broke though the gates and beseiged Heaven itself). That level might make you fight alongside the angelic armies, culminating in a free-for-all battle with all seven Evils, in a battle playing out much like the Pandemonium event in D2, except with all seven Evils rather than just the Primes. For an event like that, the Hellfire Torch could be brought back as the legendary reward (for item purposes, probably it would be an Amulet). Other quests could take you to areas not explored in D3 proper, such as Ureh (originally part of the game, but taken out early in development) or Scosglen, land of the druids. And, of course, the Cow Level could always be remade as well :). Overall, if I had creative control of Blizzard’s D3 team, that would be my vision of D3’s endgame.

  8. I like this idea of special Ubers, perhaps completing All 5 acts’ bounties on Torment 1, 2 ,3 etc. each opens a hell rift with two or 3 levels of trash and elites that leads to one special Uber per Torment level, so 6 special Uber bosses. Making it similar to a Neph rift but the bosses being unique and only accessible that way with unique loot tables(high end crafting mats, special legs etc) and making the hell rift after completing Torment 6 the hardest thing you’ll ever have to do in life 😛

  9. I guess PvP will be the endgame….or a never ending dungeon.

  10. When at work, we don’t deliver functionality, we get a message from customer – \Do it or we wont pay you for months of yours team work\ – then you’ll get fired. Why doesn’t it apply to Bli$$ – thanks to noobs and whiners whose view of project development ends at clicking big glittering monster. There is no endgame – Bli$$ responds: not good enough – OK, it’s not good enough – then why are we paying for this … this unfinished project.

  11. QUOTE

    I guess PvP will be the endgame....or a never ending dungeon.

    PvP with the current HP/damage balance is a pipe dream. I’ve seen HC players with 35+ million EHP on streams. What does that mean? That they would still die to 1-2 hits from players. GG

    I think a kind of PvEvP system would be really cool though. Give each competitor a completely identical, but randomly generated dungeon and see which one of them can clear it the fastest or something. Do this a few times to see how they cope with different challenges and after 10 runs see who was the fastest overall.

    • Result of fucked up health globe mechanics that let you heal full life every 5-10 secs. Had we proper health pool, pvp woul have worked.

      Essentially you need a big health pool and low dmg so fights can last longer than 3 seconds. And the game , the mobs forces you to do that, unless you come up with health globes – an action element taken from mentality of 90s fight machines. With globes health is being constantly renewed and you dont need the big health pool. And this killed PvP.

      Even now PvP could work by making health pool total 10x-20x than what it is now. But yea you would have to scrap that shitt health pool mechanics(they kinda do that with recent news of health globes being more rare, maybe they finally found correlation between : people are not using defensive skills and there is 1000 globes healing full life around.

      • If globes were a relevant source of healing, players would not bother obtaining LS (and other sustain/regen) options.

        Globes basically stop being relevant once you’re farming Inferno.

        • please go back to dictionary 101 for you clearly cant read. Blizzard is lowerinf the chance of globes spawn, so they quite relevant.

          • So you’re going to take Blizzard’s somewhere-in-the-middle-of-iterating-pseudo-planning-patch-notes over the actual experiences of people that have been playing D3 and farming Inferno for months?

            In the game as it currently is, health globes are basically worthless once you get to Inferno. No one stacks +healing from globes, everyone stacks a combination of LS and LoH.

            From the stuff that Blizzard has indicated, they’re lowering health globes to make them MORE relevant because they are irrelevant right now: they’re boosting healing from them via affixes/passives and making them harder to pick up (so you don’t accidentally do so).

            None of that is counterindicative of the fact that currently, health globes are pretty meaningless as a game system once you get out of MP0 or Hell difficulty.

  12. The best thing for me in Diablo 2 (or Titan Quest), when I reached max level or beat hell difficulty, was creating a new character with different choices of skills (yes new build). I have never even touched trading or PvP (I think that D3 should have so kind of PvP mode though). It’s so simple.

  13. Blizzard created this need for endgame when they applied a MMO design for Diablo 3 (Max level grind, and free respecs).

    It wasnt that needed in D2 because the character rerolling was the end game. Yeah know, some people dont like rerolling to experiment new characters, yada yada, but for an ARPG is a quirky design choice that somehow works, blizzard was too stuck on pleasing their wow crowd that they overlooked this and now its too late to come back from it.

    • I agree completely. D2 end game was farming items. But more importantly, those items were inspiring. Finding arreats face meant I make a barb. Finding titans revenge means I make a javazon. In d2, single items were very powerful and you could build a character around them. Further, the whole process of getting to max level was unique. Leveling a bowazon was different from a spearazon. Singer barb was different from berserker.

      Now d3 will have adventure mode to help level new characters, but it doesnt matter past the first 60 you make. It is an improvement, but it feels like they are just barely scratching the surtace of what could be. It also feels like adventure mode and loot 2.0 should have been part of the original release.

      I think this is why people are upset and asking for end game.

  14. I would’ve hated not being able to respec in D3 vanilla, because repeating the annoying story content so many times would drive me insane. With adventure mode in the game I would be fine with creating lots of new characters to try out builds.

  15. Flux, the reason you don’t understand why players want a proper end game is because they want to do something beyond the mindless loot hunt which is all that RoS has at the moment. Adv mode and Neph rifts are just different flavors of mindless loot hunts. Players want to do something challenging with the epic loot they find not just farm for loot until their heads explode.

    Once they get to a certain level of progression with a character they want something to do, to test their skill and ability against a benchmark or challenge. In WoW, you had raid bosses to fight against and sort after epic loot were rewarded if you succeed. In D3, there is nothing like that.

    Things like horde mode, endless dungeons, time trials and boss gauntlets are some of the ideas thrown around. Challenges and competition are what players crave, not farming loot ad nauseum so you become more efficient at farming loot.

    • But doesn’t this assume that you’re going to herpaderp powergame your way to facerolling Torment VI in a week, and then get bored?

      I don’t really disagree with you in theory, but progressing through difficulty sliders is still progression.

      If you want to challenge yourself, up the difficulty setting. If you want to challenge yourself further, maybe use random skills or non-optimal skills or something. I would love all the things you mentioned (well, not time trials, I hate timed anything) but Blizzard can’t add content faster than players can get bored of it, so having multiple difficulty settings is their attempt to put some built-in progression mechanics into the game.

  16. The whole endgame argument is effin’ bs, MMOs is the only genre of game where there is an endgame because you have subscribers to keep playing, and paying, after they reach max level. Every other game in the industry as no endgame, the end of a game is the endgame, there is no beat that bosses, to gear up, to beat that other bosses, while grinding mats and lower dungeons stuff between raids. Someone needs to slap those dumbasses and their “endgame” across the face and wake em up.

  17. I feel that by providing the additional game modes/random dungeons in RoS, Blizzard have added more ways to keep people busy, but they haven’t provided much of an incentive to put hundreds and thousands of hours of playtime into those.

    The AH allowed people to gear up very quickly – but then what? Once you had acquired your gear, played through the story and maybe completed the various difficulty/monster power levels, you were basically left with achievements and numeric paragon leveling. Achievements and paragon levels that allowed you to access which somewhat exclusive (bonus/end-game) content? Pretty much none.

    I’m afraid that if Blizzard don’t come up with a good reason to keep playing ‘the item game’ (and I’m actually quite sad about how D3 can be reduced to that term), ‘the item game’ as the single focus of the game and driving force behind your motivation to play, may not hold as the solid gameplay foundation of D3 for too much longer …

    • Has any game really gotten around this issue, though?

      Don’t all games of this nature just come down to doing repetitive things for an ever-diminishing chance at a reward?

      Obviously, the counteragument is to create a game around rerolling characters with different builds, but seeing as Blizzard chose not to go down that path, what are they left with? I don’t know any game that solved then “but then what?” problem to a satisfactory degree short of having the non-endgame (via rerolling) be the only actual endgame.

  18. Blizzard, “Hey guys, what is end-game to you? Be sure to let us know. We won’t take into account any of your suggestions, or even add anymore end-game things, but we are going to ask the community that question to give the illusion that we care or are doing anything about it.”

    • Asking people for their opinions, regardless of how much you care or are going to pay attention to them, is a tried-and-true method of fostering goodwill in asymmetric relationships. At worst, it commits you to nothing but gives those lacking the upper hand something to do; at best, there’s the off chance that they’ll come up with an idea you can appropriate or co-opt, without having to credit the creator because it was submitted per your solicitation.

  19. Flux, thank you for your consistent insistence on PVP that involves pre-made characters. I would agree that is the only way to make PVP work in Diablo and would be super fun and competitive. Please don’t give up teh dream.

    • I don’t think it’s the only way to do it, and I like the ideas people have floated for PvPvE, where it would be a mixture of the current monster battles and player battles tacked on top of that.

      But for PvP I really enjoyed the death match style we saw in the blizzcon demos 2 years running, especially since it’s a whole game mode just for that, and it’s skill based with everyone choosing from the same characters. I’m sure people who played it constantly would still destroy the rest of us if we hopped in for a casual game, but at least then you’d feel like you had a chance if you learned better strategy.

      PvP using existing characters in a game like D3 is just another gear check, where players with all the specialized PvP gear and builds will always win, and I don’t see that as much fun for everyone else who just wants to PvP once in a while, rather than totally devoting their chars to it.

  20. To me, end game in Diablo means ‘something to do after you got good gear’.
    I want stuff that is stiull interesting and challenging after we got all that “awesome gear” equipped.

    Farming items is something too of course, but lets be honest, D2 was a different game, back then lvling up a specific build was the “mid-game” and gearing up could be considered end-game.
    The lvling up for new builds are gone in D3, leaving gear farming as the mid-game.
    It seems unlikely we will get back lvling new characters as a mechanic in D3. I’m not entirely sure we want it back either, not even those who liked it in D2.

    That said, imo D2 could also have used more interesting stuff to do when geared up as well. Sure it had ubers etc late in its lifetime, but that still isnt much.
    Nothing wrong with having optional end-game stuff to challenge people with. Out-gearing content is equal to ‘quit the game’ imo.

    • Not having to reroll kills part of the replayability, imo.

      The no AH + overpriced mystic can work depending on the final drop rates and enchanting prices (right now, both are too high, hurting replayability).

      This game doesn’t need gold sinks, since it doesn’t have an economy right now. Unless they take it back on BoA and let some people buy their progress on 3rd party websites… I have nothing against trading, but it has a downside.

      As for the PVP: People gearing up to kill monsters with 100s of billions of HP, with CB, dealing unavoidable damage on AoE/bursts? I’m not a PvP expert or fan, but that doesn’t sound promising. I don’t see people staying in the same screen for 1 second. Ping wars I see…

  21. im bit puzzled of the focus of the article on ‘end-game=something restricted by max level’
    i believe you described it in such way with intention of leaning discussion in certain direction, otherwise the post would be totally missing the idea and be … borderline ignorant

    from lacking ros features, top two that are end-game are pvp and trading – those are the activities not restricted by level but if youre busy with leveling they are rather side (potentially helping/fun) activities, you can pvp but it probably wont be balanced and ull get destroyed by twinked char, you can trade to get better gear on your level but itll get outdated soon
    when you reach level cap (or level that lets you equip all avaiable gear and have all the mandatory skills – like in d2, 80+ would be considered eng game) those ‘end-game’ activities become the focus, youre on equal ground with everyone else, can start pvping in more balanced and populated environment, trading for best items etc

    as a fun fact and counter to the flux post – d3 ros actually HAS eng-game content by the definition ‘restricted to max level only’ – items dropped before 70 are scalled down and of worse quality than 70 level ones, hence best item-hunting is max level only

  22. mods

    Why do people nowadays simply overlook that, allow for modding and there you have it: infinite end game.

    Someone complaining there’s no end game: tell him he should write a mod. Still complaints? More mods and compile a list of already written mods.

    Someone complaining trifecta is inbalanced? Tell him there’s a mod which fixes this balancing issue.

    Blizzard should keep itself to the core: write the engine, make graphical effects – that’s what they can do well and that’s what they should focus on. Let players handle the balancing.

  23. Meh, I wouldnt consider mods a replacement for developer content.
    Beside, if the core game sucks, then mods will typically suck too.

    It also drastically split up the players to the point where multiplayer is pretty much not possible anymore (outside of friends playing together, where they can make sure they got the same mods).

  24. (outside of friends playing together, where they can make sure they got the same mods).

    What are we moving into now?

    But in minecraft modding really doesn’t split up the community: people just make sure they have the correct mods, and a modded launcher can also make sure about this.

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