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Treeharls review on ingame balance.

Discussion in 'Single Player Forum' started by Treeharl, May 31, 2016.

  1. Treeharl

    Treeharl IncGamers Member

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    Greeting everybody,

    Today I am writing a review about (singleplayer) ingame balance. This tread is not just a QQ tread but merely an opinion based view on the (current) gamebalance. People know me from posting patterns in lower kurast. Personally I'd love making these posting because they help me understanding the vanilla coding of d2. I have played diablo 2 for nearly 16 years since 1.00 and I have played a fair share of mods. In this review I talk about balance issues that exist since 1.00, issues that appeared by introducing LOD and issues that where introduced by patch 1.10.

    Issues that exist since 1.00
    - Weapon shield combination gives usually more benefitial modifiers to the character than using two hand weapons
    This is self explanatory and is more of an issue with casting characters but goes for melee characters aswell. If you compare for example a combination of HOTO + Spirit vs the "best" two hand cast weapon mang songs. Using a shield wich grants block (meaning a percentage of dmg gets entirely ignored) + an onehand weapon (1.07 lod onward) is just so much more viable than a risky twohand build. Basically this turns staves and most two handed weapons entirely useless wich is roughly 25% of the itembase!

    Issues that exist since 1.07
    - Itemrequirements on elite armors make no scence at all! If we take a look at a Dusk Shroud which has 467 max def and 77 str requirement compare this to an ornate plate which has 450 max def and 170 str requirement. Compare this to a Sacred Armor which has 601 max def and 232 str requirement that means "the best armor bases in the game" are not to be concidered
    - After Lod got introduced classic became nearly unplayable single player. Beating hell diablo with everything other than a ww barb is teddious and not really enjoyable. Basically if you want to play classic don't upgrade past 1.06!
    - Some unique items are quite strong compared to the itembase.

    Issues that exist since 1.10
    - Several runewords are vastly overpowered. Basically any question about what weapon should my melee character use could be aswerred with Grief. Enigma is to much a general solution on any characterclass. Infinity boosts casters dmg by 60% and it breaks imunities aswell and my character doesn't even have to wear that item because my merc will. CTA nearly doubles your total life and mana. 95% of all characters uses atleast one of these runewords that means rare weapons and armor are useless and most uniques can be trashed right away. This is by far the most concerning point as this makes nearly 70% of the whole itembase entirely useless once you have the runes.
    -Some uniques are too superior compared to rare items and other uniques.
    - Synergies make the game much more onedimensional.

    When you are finished reading most of you will be thinking, why am I still playing 1.13? Well it has some quite good aspects, the droprate of items are enjoyable, random bosses on different locations in hell make every run still a challenge, and most old patches have numerous flaws. Nowdays I am thinking if I prehaps should create a mod where I could fix some of these keyissues. (Modisclaimer: Nothing has been made yet and if I will noone of these items will ever come in the spf comunity) However I enjoy this (single player) game for nearly 16 years now even 1.13 in its current form.

    Thank you for reading,

    Treeharl
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2016
  2. Gripphon

    Gripphon IncGamers Member

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    I'll add Spirit runeword to a list of overpowered items. For it we need lolrunes, and look at what it offers. Okay, weapon is not something special, but shield... Spirit shield is in shield department what Enigma is in armor department - simply almost has no competition. Only legit replacement is Stormshield which is pretty much only HC thing. In SC I don't bother with Stormshield, except in rare occasions.

    Some rare items are indeed useless. Rings are for example awesome. But who on the world is picking any helm or armors? What for anyway since they are easily beaten by rather random runewords/unique items?
    Sets are also terrible imo. Only Tal Rasha's set makes some sense, rest are used only for partial bonuses.
     
  3. T72on1

    T72on1 IncGamers Member

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    Insight is very overpowered as well, considering the runes involved.

    Full Nat's set isn't too bad actually.
     
  4. Treeharl

    Treeharl IncGamers Member

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    Spirit is indeed as much OP as the other runewords I stated in my post. Didn't include it to make the wall of text a little bit shorter. The main reason why spirit is OP imo, is because the 55 fhr. There is no other item in d2 that reaches that value unless you put 3 shael's in the sockets. I sometimes just hate the fact as 1.06 player that nowadays 70% of the rares are useless and not worth picking up where in 1.06 you had to basically pick every rare (some exeptions). The price of an item doesn't mean that much on balance terms. If I make 60 lower kurast runs for an insight or 6K for an Infinity the result is both an unbalanced item.
     
  5. maxicek

    maxicek Moderator Single Player

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    For me it depends on what you want to do in the game. If you want to power game to the nth degree of optimisation, it is inevitable that one item will be preferable. But if you want to be in the top 10% say there are many other options. Ethereal Death two handers are a great choice if you don't need IAS on weapon.

    If you think Grief / Spirit / CtA / Infinity is OP you don't need a mod. Just play vanilla.

    And personally I like Enigma and think it balances more than it unbalances. Before Enigma was widely available, MFO was pretty much sorc only.
     
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  6. Treeharl

    Treeharl IncGamers Member

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    There is nothing really wrong with the fact that Enigma added a teleportation oskill in to the game usable for other chars. The main problem with Enigma is it also gives 8%dr 750 def and 60 str (lvl 80) and 45 frw. The fact that Eni has so much sidebonuses for example is just bad game design (or balance). The benefit for other characters to have teleport on their torso should have drawbacks by not having several mods. Grief imo just need a big ias nerf, to combare to eth deathcleavers (a Grief is 20x easier to make than finding an eth deathcleaver). Infinity should have a conviction oskill instead of an equipped aura, that would solve most of these problems I guess and make other options also viable.
     
  7. Gripphon

    Gripphon IncGamers Member

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    Actually biggest advantage of Spirit shield, why I use it, is 35 fcr. 15 extra fcr than any other shield in the game, and that gives huge advantage at optimizing characters. It opens other gear slots for something else. FHR I don't find that useful overall. I played some characters with 0 FHR in fact.

    Enigma is special, it turns game into something entirely different. Walking with characters or teleporting feels entirely different. Suddenly it becomes much more action packed game. Having other bonuses is not necessary. If Enigma would give 1 oskill teleport and nothing else, it would still put all other armors to dust when speaking at optimization part cuz lolteleport so much superior to walking. Not for all characters naturally. Shapeshifters obviously don't use Enigma, bowazons could use Fortitude instead (though positioning moron is just so nice to have via teleport), sorcs don't use Enigma and so on.
     
  8. Treeharl

    Treeharl IncGamers Member

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    The designers have been creating these items for a reason. Enigma's design is just giving teleport to any character to allow positioning. The fact that Enigma's stats are so great, so I am using one on my mfo sorc explains everything about why its unbalanced. Spiritshield is a bit on the same boat a design where you could use a shield to get atleast 2 skills and atleast 25 cast (this alone warrant a 1 HR cost to build) Then they added 100 mana and 55 fhr, which allows me to get away from nearly every hairy situation. Sure PvP wise the stats and skills mather the most but pvm wise I would be using SS on my sorc over spirit all days if it hadn't aditional mana and fhr. If I was to balance spirit I would change the rune order to Tal Thul Ort Sur, remove the 55 fhr and remove 50 mana (Sur grants 50 mana)
     
  9. Brak

    Brak IncGamers Member

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    My biggest gripe is just that almost all of the Oskill auras were put onto polearms or items not weildable by the other mercs (aside from Faith). Act 2 mercs were already overused due to them having an aura. When they are the only ones that can wield Infinity, Insight, and in rare cases Pride, people mostly just use other mercs for style points. I guess I could always make a Last Wish for my Barb Merc, just need two more Jahs and a Sur. Then he'll be just as good as an Act II merc without Last Wish.

    Also the 1.11 added runewords were a disappointment. Treachery is ridiculous, everything else is useless. It's like they just rolled some dice to figure out what the runewords would do.
     
  10. Friiser

    Friiser IncGamers Member

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    From my perspective, I'm glad they are overpowered. I worked by tail end off for many years to grind for the runes to make Enigma and Infinity, and I'd be pissed if they got nerfed. They are, in single player mode, not easy to come by.
     
  11. Treeharl

    Treeharl IncGamers Member

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    @ Friiser. The last two weeks I have done about 4k lower kurast runs. Resulting in enough runes to make Enigma, Hoto and CtA on my sorc. Sure some efford was involved but now my sorc can solo hell at players 3 and laugh at every mob blizz designed (exept conviction souls).

    @Brak. These polearms have the stat aura when equiped which basically put an aura state on your character or merc. If it was an oskill the merc woudn't been using it at all and you get the aura on your right mouse button. Ofcourse putting conviction as oskill on infinity would be a very, very big and imo justificated nerf
     
  12. maxicek

    maxicek Moderator Single Player

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    There have been many Diablo 2 clones over the years. But we are still playing this, despite its age. Consider that the balance is one the things the game designers did in fact get right.

    If there was only one melee item that was any good, I wouldn't have over 60 mats & pats. I have finished the game with Passion (several times), Vengeance, upped Vile Husk, upped Crainte Vomir, 6 Shael Colossus Blade to name but a few.

    I have used Infinity on melee characters for the -AR. One thing that makes a character OP may be the very thing that makes another viable.

    You just need to get out of the "must slap all the best gear in one character and teleport around until my eyes bleed mentality."

    Alternatively if you really want to optimise a character as much as possible with all the available gear, come and play PvP. Then you can really see how good your character is.
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2016
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  13. Gripphon

    Gripphon IncGamers Member

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    I just want to add, PvM also offers you big opportunity to plan your character to details (my travbarb, my travsorc, Fabnus's pit zerker...), it is just less rewarding than in PvP cuz in PvM you can make something less optimal and you probably won't feel any difference (say if I replace Fathom from trav blizzsorc to Hoto, I wouldn't notice difference in killing speed except if I use runcounter), and such change in PvP will get you killed more than needed. PvP is just more rewarding for optimized characters while in PvM it matters less.

    Optimization is indeed the reason why it even comes to conclusion something is too strong. The fact is you can finish the game with many different things, but that is rather fun approach. If someone wanted to make best char, there is not much of a choice apart of Enigma, Grief etc. But as for fun part, people play the game with normal sets too etc.
     
  14. T72on1

    T72on1 IncGamers Member

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    I have to agree with @maxicek and @Gripphon here. There are many ways to play D2, and the examples given here mainly focus on those trying to minmax. A lot more than the high-end runewords mentioned here works. You won't max your efficiency, but sure you can have a lot of fun.

    I also agree with @Friiser: in SP, HRs aren't that easy to come by either. Easier than they used to be, but still not easy. Most of us don't have the time to do 4K LK runs in 2 weeks (just as an example, I don't want to pick on you), and even then I would call it a serious effort. If you have the time and dedication to do so, great. But for the many people who don't, I think the current drops rates are rather good, giving them the opportunity to make runewords they never thought they would before 1.13, but not in an easy way.
     
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  15. pharphis

    pharphis IncGamers Site Pal

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    The biggest imbalance the game has is the 1 sec cooldown on FoH.

    /s
     
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  16. Treeharl

    Treeharl IncGamers Member

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    @T72on1 Since we all agree HR's are quite hard to come by, would you ever be spending your Sur and Lo at your 3 socked 15 ed dusk and make dragon or rahter save the Lo for grief and the armor and the Sur for an Enigma? My point is even when you don't use optimal builds your doing so by using different uniques just for the sake of fun. Not because it's the best possible. The fact that Enigma is beyond rediculous and if we exclude the situational forty the only armor you should spend your hard earned HR's on. If we find 1 million of rare torso's it won't be as good as eni even if it has 200 ed 24 fhr 2 sock and indestruct.

    @Gripphon Uniques are quite easy to swap on a build, runewords require planning and HR's are more teddious to get. You rather don't waste your Hr's but you can wear that fleshripper on your sorc because well something different and after 15 runs and a token reset it into fathom or hoto.
     
  17. T72on1

    T72on1 IncGamers Member

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    I have been using Treachery, Duress and CoH too, next to Enigma and Fortitude. But that's probably because I never had an Enigma in the first place. My only Jah went to a Dream Helm. But I agree, the choice of armors is quite limited, and almost only to runewords. Rare and even unique armors are definitely not in a good spot compared to runewords. I mean, look at the rarest item of them all: Tyrael's Might. It's stats are ridiculous, compared to how rare it is.
     
  18. Friiser

    Friiser IncGamers Member

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    Well, I've probably not gotten to the 4k plateau on the LK runs, but I've done a lot, especially since I'm pretty sure the designers didn't have that as part of their plan on how the game was supposed to be played. Insights from forum members discovered the "run", dove into the mechanics and figured out that its an efficient way of getting many of the high runes. It is by no means fun in my opinion to do an LK run, but it is fun teleporting around with my summon Necro beating up on the baddies.

    I agree with @maxicek that the game balance is something the developers did get right. Can it be further tweaked? Yes, but its a trade-off with the players. Some may like it just the way it is, while others will embrace a change.

    I've always been impressed @jiansonz ability (and anyone else who plays this way) to play self found - no twinking. I would think that a person whom was lucky enough to find the runes for Enigma by just playing the game and without twinking, or muling, would probably make the armor (unless they're playing a sorc, even then maybe so).
     
  19. Brak

    Brak IncGamers Member

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    ftfy
     
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  20. Treeharl

    Treeharl IncGamers Member

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    @T72on1 Your opinion about the "use"of Tyrael's Might is exactly the reason why I think some items from the game could be tweaked.
    @Friiser Rarity of items is a way to balance stuff but it doesn't fix broken issues. It only makes the player to do more or less runs. Within 4K LK runs (I cubed 4 surs for my Jah) on 1.13 I got my Enigma at 1.10 that would have taken me atleast 20K runs. The outcome is stilll the same armor. If I for example made an item (lets say a wand) with a dropchance of 1 in a million with 7allskills and 40 fcr everybody would be running for that wand. When they got it every caster that has aqquired it will be using it. The argument an item is rare or hard to come by is imo not a valid argument for being overpowered.
     

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