What Made D2's Itemization so good?

  • #21
    Quote from FoxBatD2

    As already mentioned, the game was easy and it had no AH economy. These are much bigger factors than item lovers will give credit for.

    Imo it didn't hurt that the game was so damn easy. The focus in Diablo 2 has always been to progress the character even though hell was trivial once you had a few standard uniques equipped. A lot of people also just cared for PvP in either open games or leagues.
  • #22
    Quote from FoxBatD2

    Quote from ruksak

    I think a strong indicator that D2's itemization was better was the fact that people didn't throw a god damn fit about how bad it sucked.

    We could argue in frantic circles all day about the technicals, the why's and if's and but's ........people loved D2 itemization and the only complaints I ever heard about them was that there were too few BiS selections of Uniques/RW's.

    As already mentioned, the game was easy and it had no AH economy. These are much bigger factors than item lovers will give credit for.

    I did years of competitive PvP (GM Elite Zeal Duels) and I thought the itemization was brilliant. Maybe you PvE addicted laymen thought it was bad, but not I.

    The Horadric Cube says D3 vanilla is ....vanilla.
    BurningRope#1322
  • #23
    Most of this isn't helpful. The guy wants to know what is good about D2s loot (hell, he'll probably take examples from any ARPG, I'd guess) because he wants to use that knowledge to make his game better. Telling someone "everything was perfect with D2 loot" doesn't help because he's obviously not copying D2s loot 1-for-1. He needs specific feedback, not infographs made by some butthurt Blizztroll that aren't even factually correct.

    Some things to think about when it comes to loot:

    Player Power vs Monster Power
    In D2 you could beat the game naked. This meant that the items were sorta like... icing on the cake. An imperfect item was still viable. This is why so many people say stuff like "lower level items were viable!" These items were viable because the game was less difficult. People clamored for higher difficulty in D3, they got it, and one of the side-effects is that it puts more emphasis on attaining items that are "great" instead of just "ok." Which is better? Can't say. I'm not personally a fan of being able to beat a game that's loot-centric without any loot, though.

    Unkillable Players
    Life Leech. My favorite topic ever. In D2 you could stack this til the cows came home (err no pun intended) and make a character that, in PvM, was exceptionally difficult to kill. Was this good design? I doubt it because it was one of the first things that the D3 team nixed. It was recognized that having characters that could basically stand in anything, and who basically had infinite life and mana with fairly low gear requirements was a bad idea. I'm not saying that D3 got this right, but I would definitely caution you about not throwing stats like Life Leech (or Mana Leech) around on lots of items or, at the very least, keep careful control on it so as not to dillute the game with that particular stat. Then again, you may want to avoid it completely and go in another direction which would also be interesting.

    Skills
    This is the one area that I think D2 completely outstripped D3, although we will see how Loot 2.0 addresses it. Most of the skill-specific affixes in D3 are completely inadequate and insufferable. They're almost always inferior to other offensive stats and for most builds it's not worth having them. STONE OF JORDAN (D3) is the one major example against this because of how the item is designed. However, the +all skills and +trees were pretty slick because of how they interacted with your other choices. I took exception with +individual skills that granted the ability to gain skills from other classes (Enigma), but in general there was a better interaction. A druid helm that had +Lycanthropy, for example, was great. Allowing everyone to Teleport was a dire mistake. The only downside of this was that +all skills became a pretty ubiquitous stat and was one of the main ways to increase your damage.

    Weapons
    This is a hot topic since the D3 team decided that weapon damage determines the damage of all your abilities whereas D2 weapons had no bearing on your damage. It is my feeling that it makes no sense for an all-powerful wizard to be running around using a weapon he found at level 4 because it's got better stats. No one complains that armor = defense and that higher level items have more armor. Yet somehow people complain about what amounts to a mechanic that ensures that some dinky level 4 newbie wand isn't the best item in the game. I don't get it, I never will. Is it a bit strange that a fireball from the sky takes your weapon damage into account? Sure. Does it provide better gameplay? Absolutely. As an adventurer why wouldn't your weapon be one of your most important items?

    Charms
    Never ask people to trade inventory space for power. It was a great idea in theory. In practice it was a massive annoyance. Items should be equipped. If they are to be carried around on your person then put them in some "bag" or "pouch" that is separate from the actual inventory. Do not use inventory space for this. It's infuriating.

    That's all I have in terms of actual feedback on the subject, OP. I hope it helps give insight for your items in your game!
    66.0k elite kills :: 1.97m total kills :: p244
    Planet Express <PlanEx>
    (V) (°,,°) (V)
  • #24
    Quote from Efrye

    Quote from FoxBatD2

    As already mentioned, the game was easy and it had no AH economy. These are much bigger factors than item lovers will give credit for.

    Imo it didn't hurt that the game was so damn easy. The focus in Diablo 2 has always been to progress the character even though hell was trivial once you had a few standard uniques equipped. A lot of people also just cared for PvP in either open games or leagues.

    Grinding modifier, Vision modifier, ethereal, rolling items up to their next highest classification, charms, rolling Baal charms up, jewels, wider selection of gems, runes (socketed~i.e. Ber'd Vision helm), ITD, CbF, FhR, Rune Words, Socket Quest, Charsi, .........I'm forgetting much......LoD took a steaming shit on D3 vanilla's itemization.

    Arguing against that makes anyone look foolish.

    The good news is, Loot 2.0 stands to even the field, theoretically.
    BurningRope#1322
  • #25
    I kinda knew that as soon as someone would post this damn picture, the thread would get derailed. Can we try to get this back on topic?

    OP asked for what made D2's itemization so great, not to discuss the meaning of life.

    In my personal opinion, rune words where the one thing that kept me playing, especially the ladder-only rune words as mentioned in a different thread. Most of the items itself and the "itemization" was, in my opinion, not better than in D3 - probably even worse, considering that I played self-found and switched to ladder because playing self-found without these ladder rune words as a casual player was almost impossible. You had to get all the different resists (there was no allres), you had to get to a certain amount of str/dex to meet item's requirements, you had to get some life leech, and then (if there was anything left on the wish list) you had "mandatory stats" just in D3: +skills, and for my Teleport+Blizzard sorc FCR+FHR.

    If I were to build a game, I'd rather copy D3's itemization (or TL1). The other thing is that for a quick game, it doesn't matter what kind of stat system you use, it's only when playing for a long time that balance of endgame gear really matters, and this is where D3 cannot keep up with D2 yet. Though, as someone already pointed out, there was no AH in D2 and we had frequent ladder resets as well. Look at Torchlight 1 - the first 15 hours of that game were the absolute best ARPG experience I've ever had. Once you reached endgame it was totally boring, there was nothing to aim for and the high-level items were not balanced with regard to higher char levels.
  • #26
    Contextually I think it's important to remember that D2 benefited from a drastically different market and player base than D3 has today. That notwithstanding, D2's itemization had more "creativity" than D3's, but it was superficial. As many have already expressed the game allowed for more open itemization because of the level curve. It would be interesting to see how D2 would have differed had there been a level cap in line with monster levels. I think you would have seen a very similar pattern to what we see now.

    That being said, even if it was more of an illusion of choice, there was still some cool stuff with D2 itemization. I have always been a massive fan of Rune Words and think the concept is fantastic. You got a decent white item with the right number of sockets and it was something to be excited about! IMO the right combination for good itemization is customization and fun.
    .
  • #27
    Quote from Bagstone
    (there was no allres)

    There was.
  • #28
    Quote from Efrye

    Quote from Bagstone
    (there was no allres)

    There was.

    I think he means as an affix. There was in Diamonds if I recall. My memory is a bit fuzzy, it's been 5+ years
    BurningRope#1322
  • #29
    Quote from ruksak

    Quote from Efrye

    Quote from Bagstone
    (there was no allres)

    There was.

    I think he means as an affix. There was in Diamonds if I recall. My memory is a bit fuzzy, it's been 5+ years

    There has been a prismatic affix.
  • #30
    Quote from Efrye

    Quote from ruksak

    Quote from Efrye

    Quote from Bagstone
    (there was no allres)

    There was.

    I think he means as an affix. There was in Diamonds if I recall. My memory is a bit fuzzy, it's been 5+ years

    There has been a prismatic affix.

    Can't remember. Been too many years.
    BurningRope#1322
  • #31
    Why are most of you saying D2 Hell difficulty could be "beaten nude" / retardedly easy etc., when that is not the case at all? I don't remember the earlier patches too well, but from v1.10 on Hell was hard, far harder than D3 Inferno mp0 is nowadays.

    NO CLASS could beat it nude, and some classes (sorc for example - or basically any that relies too much on 1 element) could not beat it at all (except by skipping a lot of mobs - and even then, some parts like Travinical Council just weren't possible without Gosu items like Infinity)

    It only became easy once you outgeared it by a huge margin, just like it is now in D3. So the fuck is up with all the talks of D2 easiness.
  • #32
    Quote from Shad3slayer

    Why are most of you saying D2 Hell difficulty could be "beaten nude" / retardedly easy etc., when that is not the case at all? I don't remember the earlier patches too well, but from v1.10 on Hell was hard, far harder than D3 Inferno mp0 is nowadays.

    NO CLASS could beat it nude, and some classes (sorc for example - or basically any that relies too much on 1 element) could not beat it at all (except by skipping a lot of mobs - and even then, some parts like Travinical Council just weren't possible without Gosu items like Infinity)

    It only became easy once you outgeared it by a huge margin, just like it is now in D3. So the fuck is up with all the talks of D2 easiness.

    Yeah, good point (though slightly derailing the thread), but I just don't get it despite people writing that in every one of these discussions. As a self-found player and someone who refrained from using duped high runes and other stuff, hell was sometimes a pain in the ass for my Blizzard sorc. But then, I'm also not a pro gamer. It could be beaten nude though, there were some groups doing that (there was even one group who did the entire game including uber events nude).
  • #33
    Quote from Shad3slayer

    Why are most of you saying D2 Hell difficulty could be "beaten nude" / retardedly easy etc., when that is not the case at all? I don't remember the earlier patches too well, but from v1.10 on Hell was hard, far harder than D3 Inferno mp0 is nowadays.

    NO CLASS could beat it nude, and some classes (sorc for example - or basically any that relies too much on 1 element) could not beat it at all (except by skipping a lot of mobs - and even then, some parts like Travinical Council just weren't possible without Gosu items like Infinity)

    It only became easy once you outgeared it by a huge margin, just like it is now in D3. So the fuck is up with all the talks of D2 easiness.

    I believe when people compare the titles in terms of difficulty, they're comparing them based on D3 being at MP10, which is fair imo.
    BurningRope#1322
  • #34
    This is just a very personal feeling for me, but I feel that in D2 I had to make difficult decisions all the time. I played almost exclusively solo and never traded, so I am probably not the average guy. So, every time I made a new character the journey was different (even though I made mostly bowazons), the adventure depended on the items I got and the way I customized my character. Sometimes a session with a character (I usually started to do something else when my chars turned 80-85), was completely thrown around because I would luckily found a 4 socket elite armor that I could turn into this epic runeword.

    In D2 you could also customize your items with runes (use them now or save for runewords?), gems and jewels. Decisions are more or less final, with limited means to recover your them from your items.

    It was also much harder to figure out if item A was better than item B. Do I want +1 to skills or a bit more attack speed? In D3 most items to me had just three properties and if the total of green change was better than the total of red change.

    D2 was maybe easier (although with a completely self-found Bowazon I still could spend 45 minutes and countless townportals to kill Baal), but I liked that choice had permanence. I surely hope they are going to put some of that back into the expansion as well, but being able to respec your paragon bonus points does not look promising.
  • #35
    http://diablo.incgam...e-uber-tristram

    These guys cleared all of D2, naked, hardcore, including Pandemonium and Ubers, post-1.10.

    http://diablo.incgam...11-HC-naked-zon

    There's a guy who got to 75, naked, hardcore, in 1.11, with an Amazon.

    There are tons of people who did stuff like this. These were just the first two Google results I pulled up.

    I'll stop saying D2 was easier than D3 when people start showing that they can clear all of D3 naked (they can use a weapon for obvious reasons), on hardcore. The bar was set by the D2 players who did it. The only thing that keeps me saying it is that no one in D3 is recreating those feats. The minute people start doing it in D3 you can bet your ass I'll stop using the "people beat D2 naked" argument. Until that point, it's completely valid and based in fact.

    EDIT
    Also can we please keep this on-topic? The OP isn't asking people to debate whether or not people did beat D2 naked, especially since everyone knows it was done many times, and it's been archived on many sites. He's asking about what he can do to draw from D2 (and presumably other ARPGs) to make his game better.
    66.0k elite kills :: 1.97m total kills :: p244
    Planet Express <PlanEx>
    (V) (°,,°) (V)
  • #36
    Quote from shaggy



    EDIT
    Also can we please keep this on-topic? The OP isn't asking people to debate whether or not people did beat D2 naked, especially since everyone knows it was done many times, and it's been archived on many sites. He's asking about what he can do to draw from D2 (and presumably other ARPGs) to make his game better.

    I'm hoping he can extrapolate from all this the general idea that people want to be able to fiddle with items post-drop. The fun isn't just in having great items drop. Part of the fun is tinkering with them through some mechanism that creates randomized (gamble style) outcomes.

    Collecting reagents and [hollow shells] and being able to utilize them to create new items, that dynamic has tremendous appeal.
    BurningRope#1322
  • #37
    Thanks for the links Shaggy. Yeah, the InDiablo Ironman crew was really crazy. However, doesn't the fact that you can beat the game naked show that it was not (just) the itemization that was great, but the game itself? The reason you can't do this in D3 is because you need certain items/stats. And in a loot-based game, I don't see what's wrong about this.

    By the way, the Ironman event sparked a very lively debate on the German InDiablo forums at the time. The Ironman guys said in the beginning that they did this to show how dissatisfied they were with the useless itemization. Just to name one counterexample to the previous claim "no one complained about D2 itemization". These guys did, and did it with style.

    So one thing OP should take away from this: make items meaningful and a necessity for progress rather than just a means to speed up/simplify gameplay.
  • #38
    the difference is:

    d2 have a skill tree. so what?

    you can be stronger adding more skills points, reducing the demand of powerfull items.

    for example, you can reach nighmare with items lvl 15-20 if you have some decent skill tree.
  • #39
    That crew of people who did the impossible is hardly relevant. Someone soloed Lich King HC during early cata, yet full raids still fail on it to this day. A DK soloed the 5.2 end boss during 5.3, yet no one says it's "easy". Those few outlying people are hardly a measure of the difficulty of content.

    Generally, I think D3 difficulty is too artificial. MP is uninteresting in the sense that it only adds huge chunks of HP and flat out dmg, without any additional mechanics/ systems/ possibly harder enemy types/ immunities/ anything.

    Also apologies for off topic, but I just felt I had to remark on the too easy claims.

    EDIT: Also @ruksak, how is it fair to compare mp0 D2 difficulty with mp10 D3, which is the very hardest difficulty only a small part of the population can clear, and out of those 90% are barbs? :P
  • #40
    Quote from shaggy

    Unkillable Players
    Life Leech. My favorite topic ever. In D2 you could stack this til the cows came home (err no pun intended) and make a character that, in PvM, was exceptionally difficult to kill. Was this good design? I doubt it because it was one of the first things that the D3 team nixed. It was recognized that having characters that could basically stand in anything, and who basically had infinite life and mana with fairly low gear requirements was a bad idea. I'm not saying that D3 got this right, but I would definitely caution you about not throwing stats like Life Leech (or Mana Leech) around on lots of items or, at the very least, keep careful control on it so as not to dillute the game with that particular stat. Then again, you may want to avoid it completely and go in another direction which would also be interesting.

    To add to the above, some developers attempt to curb stats, such as life steal %, and limit this, but translating this to players is another challenge, how does the player know they can only stack 30% life steal and anything afterwards is useless?

    UI plays a huge part with items too :)
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