The Diablo Podcast #90: v1.08 and PTR Debate

Ynzerg and Xanth join Flux for a conversation about the v1.08 patch, recent PTR testing, and other current Diablo 3 news. Plus, another bonus obscure item type quiz!

Show program:

  • 0:00 — Intro and recent PTR testing (or not). Will the new game type tags work? Can we just get a return to D2-style game naming?
  • 6:15 — Single player and online-only D3 thoughts.
  • 9:05 — Recent play. Everyone’s still Hardcore, Ynzerg’s new Wizard and the weirdness of being a non-Barbarian (and thus almost dying sometimes).
  • 12:00 — Crafting gear costs vs. big price upgrades.
  • 18:00 — Why it’s impossible to go back to Softcore after playing Hardcore for a while. Also, is the Auction House mandatory for Hardcore success?
  • 23:55 — Monster density changes in v1.08. Will Act 2 will be the best farming ground in v1.08?
  • 38:30 — Possible nerfs to the duration of DiabloWikiArchon and DiabloWikiWrath of the Berserker. Given the state of the OPB, why do players waste time with other lesser classes?
  • 44:30 — Other v1.08 skill changes. Ray of Fail, Rapid Fire, etc.
  • 46:30 — Flux rants about the OPB of Inspiring Presence. (Slightly defused by skill unbuff announced earlier this week, after the podcast was recorded.)
  • 55:05 — Craft-o-matic in v1.08. The assembly line begins.
  • 1:00:50 — Boss battle notification coming in v1.08, and the return of the “guess that item type” game.
  • The Diablo 3 Podcast Episode Guide in provides links to every show, plus quick summaries.


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    1. All I was hearing from this podcast was .. “50 million”,”100 million”, “selling on AH”, “10k gold for selling on AH”, “it’s boring because I am playing super-AH-OP builds on lower MPs and I feel like on a GOD MODE”. How can you even play on HC when you are drastically lowering the difficulty with AH ?? Or you are testing your ISPs connection to Blizzard servers?

      To the PTR:
      * Tags – this is the most idiotic (lazy) thing I’ve ever saw on a multiplayer game, … No we cannot give you custom games with custom names, no, because it won’t be our idea, it will be idea from D2. But we give you something that will cause even more fragmentation of already over-fragmented (sorry for the word) players in public games (???) And this change is advertised as a Social feature.
      * Multi-craft – added FOR loop to a basic craft functionality (just WOW)
      * Identify-All – added FOR loop to a basic identify functionality (…)
      * Density – should be added from the start because this is really a good change (they just added (or tweaked) more monster spawners to some maps)
      * Skill “balance” – randomly added few addition to useless skills (which are still useless because of their core design, not numbers)

      Don’t get me wrong but your last podcasts sounds like a few people who are not playing games and playing only a D3 sometimes (AH warriors mostly) are discussing something that they really don’t care about. I think you need more non-AH fighters, or a non-AH HC players.

      • * Skill “balance” – randomly added few addition to useless skills (which are still useless because of their core design, not numbers)

        It is always numbers – give me 1 skill that you think is useless – crank the numbers enough and it becomes useful.

        • Skills >
          Dashing Strike – fine example of completely useless skill because of the short dash distance (all runes are useless too) – this skill need something like a 3x more distance and 100%dodge while moving
          Chant of Resonance – no numbers can make this passive useful

          • Dashing Strike – Actually, as far as I know you’re invulnerable during the dash. With the 310% damage it does it’s not bad damage against single targets. It does need to be improved on the movement front though.

            Chant of Resonance – It’s a great passive for Tempest Rush monks or generally for anyone who wants spirit regen for whatever reason. I use it often.

            • Re: Chant of Resonance… yeah, I was amused by cmelda lecturing others on his superior game knowledge, and then entirely discounting a passive that’s all-but-mandatory for the 2nd or 3rd most popular Monk build.

              One of the things I’m missing most while playing HC monk is that I can’t use TR effectively. I don’t have good enough gear yet to switch from survival passives, and thus Chant and Exalted Soul aren’t on the table, which means I can’t turnstile my way through the hordes… at least not for more than a few seconds before all Spirit is gone. Playing my old softcore monk on the PTR felt like I was on speed for the first 10m, until I got used to/remembered just how crazy fast a Monk can be with gear for Spirit Regen and huge DPS.

            • Sorry, my bad with Chant, now i realized that they added spirit regen. to it.

            • I was using Tempest Rush on v1.0 and the only purpose of this skill was to escape from the horde of enemies on Inferno, nothing more, but I liked it.
              When you playing on Inferno 310% damage on DS is basically nothing and when I tried to pass through enemies with it (tried it on MP0 because of the lowest monster dmg) I almost died because they were constantly hitting me. DS is short and slow (IMHO).

            • First of all, I was slightly wrong, Dashing Strike deals 303% damage.

              Damage-wise the problem is that as a Bell Monk, against solitary targets the longer you keep spamming your fastest attack (Fists of Thunder) to proc your Cyclones, the better off you’ll be. This means that efficient Spirit spending isn’t really a concern at all for Monks, which is why Wave of Light is king: you can burn away your Spirit quickly for huge burst damage and continue to deal amazing and “free” damage with FoT + Cyclone.

              For this reason, I think the class mechanics of the Monk is currently completely broken. Spirit is not something you really want or think about, it’s just a side effect of you doing already good damage. You either spend it as quickly as you can, so you can get back to spamming or circumvent it completely as a Tempest Rush monk by having amazing regen.

              It’s a shame things turned out this way, because with the Quicksilver rune Dashing Strike is the most efficient Spirit spender the Monk has. It also has great utility against teleporting enemies and helps with damage mitigation as well. It can’t be used to reliably escape enemies, because you need a target. The monster density changes in 1.0.8 should help with this though.

              I tried Dashing Strike on my Keywarden runs and it’s actually quite effective and fun to use, but it’s still a waste of a skill slot if you want to be efficient. I have a feeling that it could be amazing in PvP, but I’m not interested enough in Brawling to try it out.

              I hope the relationship between Spirit generators and spenders will be revisited soon (and not Blizzard soon, meaning the expansion), because as things are right now, if you want to be efficient as a Monk you’re pigeonholed into builds almost as much as Barbs and that’s saying something.

        • Chakram. Holy crap is that a terrible, terrible skill. Unless they would bump it to some ridiculous 800% weapon damage where the inconsistency of its hit box can be tolerated, it will never, ever be useful. There’s nothing between worthless and OP for Chakram.

          Fan of Knives couldn’t be useful with a damage bump, but a cooldown decrease could make it a fantastic skill – like literally 1-2 second cooldown from the inane 10 second cooldown it is now.

          • Razor Disk is awesome. It’s good in long narrow hallways, wide open spaces, and if you’re pro, you can hit the same monsters twice w/ one shot. It takes a little practice, but you can hit more monsters from further away than Multishot. The other runes kind of suck, but Razor Disk is great.

            • Enjoyed the podcast a few questions were raised that are pretty much in line with mine.

              What the hell are they going to do with paragon with the expansion?
              Isn’t the monster hp nerf too much and still not the right solution?

              Also the point that was raised about missing people dying I fully agree. The game has been made so easy it’s kind of sad. I think elite affixes like molten and frozen core, along with arcane and a few others need to be buffed a lot. IMO, that’s where the difficulty in the game needs to come back. I also think certain monsters NEED a damage buff in each act. Those are sources of damage that can be avoiding by careful positioning and reaction and it’s sad that the game is a steam roll all around.

              Also I loved the idea about how to fix act. Definitely would make it worth it.

      • “your last podcasts sounds like a few people who are not playing games and playing only a D3 sometimes (AH warriors mostly) are discussing something that they really don’t care about. I think you need more non-AH fighters, or a non-AH HC players.”

        I realize that we’re already excluding about 99% of potential players by doing all the HC talk lately, but at least it’s still the same game — the values of things just vary. Talking about D3 from a non-AH perspective would be interesting, but mostly a curiosity since such a tiny % of players choose to hobble themselves in that fashion.

        It will be fascinating to talk to some console players when/if that ever gets released, to hear how the economy and difficulty compares to the PC version, where 99% of players consider the AH mandatory for success.

        • Yes, I am curious how the console version(s) will turn out (won’t buy it after all those horrible D3 design decisions) without AH and non-AH tweaked drops (chances and ranges must be boosted). What makes me sad about D3 is that every “build” has its own price tag on it.
          When you are talking about non-AH-talk and excluding players, it may not be so bad. Maybe if you (i mean not just you, but also other streamers) will be talking more about how to progress through D3 without AH, how to make your “build” without AH and how to play more cautious, maybe more players will be playing without it. Because after all, its a Diablo game, your energy to play D-games comes from the excitement of item drops (i know its pretty bad right now, but much better than on start) and not from flipping items or playing monopoly. Your opinion has greater value than you think!

        • For what it’s worth I stopped playing back in October and enjoyed the podcast. That is likely because there was a lot of focus on hardcore, which i stopped playing during the first month after I hit Inferno on a DH and didn’t see any possibility of getting very far. As someone brought up on the episode, what is there to do in softcore? At least hardcore has a different economy out there, there are at least repercussions to dying even though the game has been nerfed to the point of it being a cakewalk most of the time and being self found can actually be kind of fun on hardcore as opposed to softcore it’s just plain silly.

          So ya… glad it was a discussion by hardcore players because it almost sounded tempting enough to play the game when itemization patch comes out on hardcore.

    2. I’ve only recently gotten into hardcore (first death earlier this week!) and it’s awesome. All my SC chars, even though they’re no where near as good as the ones Flux was talking about in the podcast, are boring. HC, real danger, the chance to restart often, etc. It’s the way to go!!!!!

      • Carry on with the HC. I just went through a buying spree for my HC monk last night; blew 80m on BK amulet and belt, plus inna’s pants. Net result has my P38 Monk at 94k dps (buffed) with max MF, 550 res, and quite good attack speed (with a shield.) And I really enjoyed a game this morning, with the finally fleet of foot speed good enough killing power to cruise through MP1.

        And even as I’m doing it, I think of my SC monk, who has more than double that DPS, plus far faster IAS with dual wield, and has 8 more spirit/sec which enables him to Tempest Rush between every pack and right through trash mobs, etc. That monk can do MP4 faster than my HC monk can do MP1, while gaining like 250% more EXP… but the HC one feels so much more fun!

        Since it feels like what I’m doing matters. Much more potential for adding wealth, for finding upgrades, and the lingering specter of potential death makes just surviving a reward in itself. I took a long time to get into HC in D3, but now that I’m doing it (and not dying and crying) it’s made the game so much more enjoyable.

    3. Great podcas! 🙂

      I am really loving all the love HC is getting in the last podcasts, and would almost wish for a dedicated HC podcast if possible. There is simply so much interesting topics to talk about- from the economy, to re-leveling guides, builds and strategies, to safely running paragon levels and so on!

      Though I may not be the dude from last time who decided to give HC another try only to die at 57, I DID let Xanth and Flux inspire me, finally got me a good old 30m ethernet cable and was able to finish inferno with a barb, for the very first time in my D3 HC career!

      Again, great podcats, and I simply cannot wait for 1.08! I am all ready to have fun in zombieland and the ZK archives! 😀

      Just a little tip, and I say this with love…. the quiz must DIE a slow, painful death! Seriously Flux… it’s as painful as trying to play a HC DC, only to realize your favorite class is simply BAD 😛

      DIE quiz, DIE! *crickets*

      P.S- both you, Flux, and you, Xanth- have pending friend requests on Do an old member a favor and accept, eh? 😉

      • Glad you liked. I think the last one pretty much *was* HC-only, though this one was more PTR and general topics. While the last one was meant to be HC themed, this one was not. It just turned out that Xanth and Ynzerg were both available when I was on Sunday night, and since the only person on the current podcast roster who’d done any real PTR (other than me) was Xanth that’s how things worked out.

        Quite often on the podcast it’s more about scheduling and when people are available than any grand “who is best for topic X” type thing. Especially these days, as people see their interest and play time wax and wane.

    4. great podcast guys. I had a good laugh:) keep it up!

    5. Isn’t the theory on tags that more people will actually try public multiplayer and so there will be more games to join? I agree with the idea for a player checkbox for fuzzy matching. I ask for an Act/Tag and MP4. The system would look for Act/Tag MP4, then Act/Tag MP3 then Act/Tag MP2 – probably never more than 1 or 2 MP levels down and never matched to higher MP levels. Under that set-up, you aren’t fragmenting the player base too much and I bet there are substantially more matches made without having to manually check each MP level yourself.

      Anyone that’s played online poker knows that sometimes there just aren’t enough people around to play your weird $5 Razz table. Those Razz players understand that’s the way it is. The guy that wants to run MP6 Act 1 Full Clear just needs to realize that everyone plays MP4 or MP7 or whatever and that’s where he/she needs to be if they want an Act 1 full clear game.

      Oh, and I think 1.0.8 is May 7 at the earliest and probably more like May 14. Mat speculators appear to feel the same given the market movement on Flawless Square Topazes and Amethysts.

      • On PTR, you’re never matched w/ anything other than your chosen Monster Power; no up or down matchmaking at all. It’s difficult to pop in and get right in. They really need to either “soften” the MP selector, or, stay w/ me here, have a games lobby! Even if you can’t name your games (which I totally understand) let us see open games, quest, MP, and tag. It’s especially annoying for PvP, b/c you have to check each MP for any quest to try and figure out where people are actually PvPing. I’ve yet to get a good Key run w/ the Keywarden tag.

        • Can’t do that. We’d have to make decisions and think for ourselves. The Devs have gone out of their way to ensure we never have make decisions or think while playing D3.

          • Oddly, that’s true in the game, where you can freespec out of everything and hardly any equipment is BoA, etc. And yet in game creation you are what you set, without any flexibility.

    6. I gotta be honest here. It’s getting hard to hear talk about items/gold prices/etc. on these podcasts, because Flux and all the guests play so much that their perceptions of what people normally have are, I’d guess, in the 90th percentile.

      That’s to be expected, but they need to keep that in their minds…especially when it comes to things like finding legendaries.

      • I think we’re actually pretty poor, compared to a lot of long time players in SC. Xanth’s fairly rich in HC, but bear in mind that I had essentially zero wealth in HC just a couple of months ago. Xanth gave me a couple of hand me downs that helped once I got my first monk to 60, but I’ve long since upgraded/replaced all of those items.

        Thus anyone can amass the quality of gear I have HC in 2 or 3 months of not at all intensive play. With application to improve, GAH finesse, some luck on not dying….

    7. Nice podcast. Nicer Inspiring Presence rant. Also, what Galtrovan said. I also somewhat agree with FaultyYogurt, I clocked a lot of hours but I feel like I am doing it wrong because I play the game and use the AH while I should play the AH and use the game ! 😀 What about a podcast regarding the price differences between EU and US ? I saw a video on how to make a 50M 200 kdps Archon on US: when I saw the guy BO the gear for it I was quite surprised because in EU you have far higher prices as far as I can see.

      • The price differences between realms are quite noticeable. I haven’t checked on EU in a while, but months ago I was comparing it to US (softcore) and basically everything on EU was like 2-5x more expensive, I guess just because there were fewer people playing on the realm. And that meant much more supply on the US server, rather than higher demand on the US server.

        HC vs. SC prices are probably a bigger shift and more interesting since HC has a much smaller player population, plus items are valued differently. For instance, BK pants are worth nearly the same as Inna’s pants in HC, while in SC BK pants are maybe 1/10th the value since the LoH isn’t that important, while more dps and AS is what it’s all about in softcore.

        • Forgive me, Flux, but based on what you describe on the podcasts, you absolutely are in the top range of wealth (hardcore or otherwise). Poor compared to a lot of people, yes, but rich compared to far more people.

          • Well maybe, but like I said in the other post, I had NOTHING in HC like 2 months ago. And I didn’t buy gold or anything; I just played and found stuff and sold a ton of ToS and hunted the GAH carefully. And didn’t die. So my Monk in HC is doing pretty well now, but he’s my only char into paragon levels, and I figure if I did that in ~2 months, then anyone can.

            I don’t know how we could really survey what people have or don’t have, but I kind of assume most people are well into Paragon levels by this time, almost a year after release. I don’t think I’ve ever sold or bought any item for more than 20 or 30m, and the GAH is full of stuff for 100m+++, so by those lights I’m poor. I’m certainly nowhere near the 500k dps MP10 farmer types, though that’s probably true for most of us.

    8. I was waiting for someone to mention game names.

    9. I don’t understand the hate on AH talk…. if you play purist that is YOUR choice. The AH makes the old trade system simple and quick, end of story.

      • “I don’t understand the hate…”

        OT, but that pretty much sums up my reaction to a considerable amount of fan feedback about all things Diablo 3. There are so many video games I don’t like or care about, and in zero of those cases do I feel compelled to seek out fansites focused on them and complain to try to ruin the fun of people who do like them.

        Admittedly, I’m generally confused by fanaticism or emotional reactions to things like video game features.

    10. I think the solution to public games with MP is to remove the need to select a quest. You should be able to say I want to farm elites on mp10 and get selected into any mp10 game with that goal. The only other issue with that is the linear quest system that prevents you from going to any area without selecting the last quest in the act, but maybe increased monster density will make playing through the story more profitable (though the small quest rewards seem to suggest otherwise).

      This would let you either “roll the dice” for what area you run, or you could create a game and have people join you if you want to do a specific area.

    11. If they’re going to nerf Wrath and Archon (which they should) they need to have a stronger effect for the duration (some of the other runes do, but extending the duration a little isn’t good enough). Most importantly though, barbarians need to be able to use whirlwind and other attacks while jailed. The main benefit of permanent wrath is the CC immunity, though it’s also a nice damage and move speed boost. It’s acceptable for frozen to stop your attacks, but with jailer you should at least be able to spin in place (I’m not sure why you can’t do this normally anyway).

    12. How do i subscribe to the podcast in iTunes? iTunes says the item is not available in the UK/GB store. Help please 🙂 .

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