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    posted a message on Designing Endgame Content in the Diablo Universe
    I enjoyed the read, but unfortunately I don't believe blizzard will change the game at this point (even though they were still changing major elements, such as runes, a month before beta). D3 just isn't a Diablo game. I wish they'd named it something else, like "Smash TV Fantasy Edition" and I wish they'd just re-released D2 with a graphics engine update. /sigh. Going back to playing D2 now.
    Posted in: Diablo III General Discussion
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    posted a message on Diablo 2 Here I Come
    Quote from Drstrong

    So let me get this straight, after putting in around 50 hours of total gameplay, I still haven't "experienced the true nature of the game"? That is one of the reasons why I am ditching this thing for the time being. I mean, seriously, how does that at all make since? MAYBE once you get through the game once, which SHOULD be challenging for the average player, then you can be rewarded like halfway though Nightmare difficulty.

    So Normal is the standard, kind of difficult play though, with really no necessary gear to get into Inferno (unless you're average gamer is going to go back and "farm" certain spots for gear, which the developer shouldn't expect a player to do).

    Nightmare is letting you know things are getting difficult, and you're screwed unless you've farmed spots towards the end of Normal difficulty. Also champions became harder than bosses.

    Hell mode I'm assuming is just a more frustrating version of Nightmare? I don't hear anyone talking about Hell and I'm not there yet.

    Inferno is broken seemingly, according to a lot of people here. BUT this is where some of the good loot finally comes out?

    So again, for an average gamer (which I am NOT), they would have to spend what around, 40 hours or so with only 1 class to get to Hell difficulty? I think that sounds about right. But, even at that point, you aren't really "into" the game yet? That's absurd.

    Honestly, this is how I feel as well. If the game doesn't actually start until 60, what's the point of levels 1-59? Why even have them? Most people I read on the forums are just power leveling through to 60 anyway, which I find very hard to believe is fun for them.

    I've been leveling through the game and am finding that after the initial playthrough to enjoy the story, it's as if the developers completely forgot that the levels before 60 exist. The "randomization" between areas is incredibly minor, and the emphasis on random champion packs and events makes me feel more like ignoring the quests and wandering aimlessly is more valuable and rewarding than "saving the world" by following the plot. Huge disconnect there.
    Posted in: Diablo III General Discussion
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    posted a message on Do You Miss Boss Runs?
    I miss boss runs for loot. I don't miss the endless baal runs for exp.

    Honestly, D3 feels a little aimless to me when I'm farming... I just wander around hoping to run into a random monster, and then I hope that monster drops a random yellow that rolls random stats that are better than the vastly more rare legendary items. Having a few fixed places to get decent drops, maybe not the best drops, but something decent, would at least give me a goal as I farm. I feel very "meh" about D3 right now.
    Posted in: Diablo III General Discussion
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    posted a message on Lowbie builds for Lowbies!!!
    As a lowbie player with not enough time to have even progressed past nightmare yet, I find these class forums daunting. They're full of people optimizing level 60 inferno builds and play style, and I'm terrified to post anything there because I'm not even level 30 yet, let alone 60.

    SO: Post your lowbie leveling builds here. The game is way easier at low levels (or so they tell us), so you probably have a weird build that's fun to play, even if it isn't so effective. For me, I'm using this:

    http://us.battle.net...iXfcS!Ya!aaZaZa

    First I buff with magic weapon, then ice armor, and then orb(it)s.

    Basically I electrocute everything except champions and bosses, which I disintegrate. Champ packs last an average of 3 seconds, and are often dead before my templar finishes his "hey there's a champ pack" dialogue. Anything I miss or that gets close enough to me (Lakani, grr) one shots themself with the arcane orbs. I also have full arcane power pretty much all the time since most of my spells are "prep" so I can afford to wait 5 seconds after casting them before I run off in search of more things to kill. A very fun, very, very strong feeling build.

    Gripe: Why is there no timer icon to show how long magic weapon lasts? Laaaaame.

    Edit: Obviously I'm not using the best runes, because, well, I don't have access to them - it's a build for lowbies!

    Edit 2: I couldn't beat diablo normal with this build. I didn't realize how much I depend on the passive healing and increased arcane power generation of the templar until that fight. To beat diablo, I swapped out orbs for arcane hydra. I hate playing the sorcy as a kiting queen, but that was the only way I could find to beat D.

    Since moving into nightmare I've replaced a few skills with more passive +damage stuff. Ice armor has been replaced with slow time and the rune of +20% damage to slowed mobs. Orb has been replaced with sparkflint familiar for the passive +12% damage (and to better track how long enchanted weapon is up). My nightmare play is almost the same as normal: I pop a slow time bubble, back up slightly, diamond armor (for the cheaper channelling), and then disintegrate the crap out of whatever I'm fighting. So far only "extra health" champions have survived past the initial duration of diamond armor. For the most part this build just melts face, no kiting needed. I'm really excited to push it through to hell and inferno - I like the wiz but I'm really scared about everyone's descriptions of having to play inferno by kiting everything. I hate kiting.

    http://us.battle.net/d3/en/calculator/wizard#UiXgjS!YaX!aZZZaa
    Posted in: Wizard: The Ancient Repositories
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    posted a message on What are your thoughts on the beta?

    Quote from kahdrick

    Demon Hunter: I was very disappointed in this class. no AoE at all, low damage, very poor snares (caltrops centers on you like frost nova but doesn's freeze enemies, it's radius isn't as big as a witch doctor's grasping hands, and it doesn't slow as much as the other snares as well). With such poor AoE and crowd control, you'd think this class would be great 1 on 1, but that's not the case either. Single target damage is terrible. You play this class by running away a LOT. Not fun. It's like a combination of all of the worst parts of the assassin and the bowazon from D2. Rage and Discipline don't really work well either. They play completely unrelated. Why not have one go up as the other goes down, forcing a mix of attacks? instead they both diminish separately, and there's a third class of attacks for rage generation. Lame.

    So, you know that there are more abilities in the retail version than in the beta? DH gets a ton of AoE abilities (look at Multishot, Elemental Arrow for starters) and CC (Caltrops, Fan of Knives, Entangling Shot, Stunning Grenades are a few off the top of my head). Did you try Chain Gang on Entangling Shot? It's a spammable hatred generator that snares up to 4 enemies every time. The effectiveness of Caltrops, as opposed to something like Grasping Hands, is that it has no cooldown, and the snare is applied to all enemies that stand in its radius. You can drop 3 caltrops in a line while running away, and enemies have to walk through all 3 to get to you.

    Single target damage? Did you try Impale, spammable 250% weapon damage with an early rune that stuns most of the time? Or Rapid Fire, a huge single-target damage channeling attack? The idea of 2 separate resources is not that bad if you get the feel of it. Hatred for attacks, Discipline for defense/utility. Pretty simple. If one went down while the other goes up, you wouldn't be able to do a mix of attacks. You would have to stand there and shoot, then wait for Discipline to drop Caltrops of Vault away.

    You're entitled to your opinions, but I'm trying to show you that DH actually is a very fun and effective class, who can do anything, from clearing mobs in no time, dropping massive CC, to huge single target damage etc.


    I'm really glad that you enjoyed the DH. For me, it was probably the class I was most excited about coming into the beta (since I'm a die-hard amazon player for D2), and I felt that it was just not nearly as effective as the other classes. Even with a very high damage crossbow, I felt like monsters lived for 2-3 times as long as when I fought with my not as well geared wizard or monk. once I got the wizard comparable gear, she was 1-shotting almost everything, and the DH was still attacking, snaring, running, attacking again to try and kill things.

    Chain gang was cool, but doesn't do enough damage. I simply could not use it until my friend showed me how to assign any skill to any button (terrible design, btw, blizz, hiding that option) so that I could use chains and Impale at the same time. As for rapid fire, which looked cool and sounded cool, it didn't kill anything for me. I would literally burn through 100% of my rage on a single, normal zombie, and it wouldn't die. Ineffective ability, however cool looking, is still ineffective. Comparing the DH skills to similar skills from other classes (ray of frost outshines rapid fire by a wide margin, grasp of the dead outperforms caltrops in every way), he left me feeling weak.

    And the last straw for me was, as I said, that the dual-resource system just doesn't feel good to me. The two resources are totally unrelated, the abilities I used from them aren't particularly complimentary, and there's no positive re-inforcement for me to mix up my skills to use both resources. I'm sure all of that will change later in the game, but at level 13, he simply did not impress me. I really feel like the other 4 classes were distinct in their play and abilities, whereas the DH feels like a hybrid mish-mash of random skills, resources, and playstyle. It's very possible that I simply don't "get" the class, and that if I watch a youtube video of some DH master playing, I'll learn what I was doing wrong, but the way he seemed intended to be played just didn't work for me.
    Posted in: Diablo III General Discussion
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    posted a message on What are your thoughts on the beta?
    Okay, first impressions from the Open beta:

    Initally I was turned off by the very linear story and maps prior to the Weeping Hollow. At that point, however, the exploration and open game world came into play, and the game really felt like the diablo games that I grew up with. Heck, I still play D2 on the regular. Based on this experience, I'm definitely getting D3.

    Classes:

    Barb: Pretty much what I expected. The "moon physics" weren't as bad as they looked in the vids, in fact I really enjoyed the physics - overall the class feels pretty fun. I didn't really understand what was healing me as I fought, but for the most part the class feels good. The Rage mechanic is the same as WoW... you feel like you have to rush and skip over item upgrades and skill swaps because you don't want to lose your rage between fights. Cutscenes are murder on the flow of this class because of rage loss.

    Monk: This is going to be the class I play first in retail. I wasn't going to before beta, but after the very first hit, I was sold. The class just feels awesome. Strong hits, strong AoE, really awesome sound effects, and an accent I can make fun of - this class is great. Plus there's the endless comedy of the spunk-meter. Spirit is a fun mechanic. It's just like the barbarian's rage, but without the loss over time. In fact, the only part of the Monk experience that irked me was the teleport-punch of the main attack with the first level rune. There's no animation at all for it, so rather than appearing to "teleport" you feel more like you "glitched" to the monster. The camera also jumps, instead of flowing to you, so the overall feel pulls you completely out of the game, disorients you, and looks like you're glitching around the screen. For that reason alone I'm never going to use this attack.

    Wizard: Also a fun class. I really like the ray of frost effect, and frost nova - they feel good, feel balanced - just enough snare to let you get distance, but a cooldown that's long enough for you to have to run a bit. Arcane power is a fun mechanic too - a very good resource. It prevents spamming one ability all day, but replenishes fast enough that you don't feel "out" of power.

    Demon Hunter: I was very disappointed in this class. no AoE at all, low damage, very poor snares (caltrops centers on you like frost nova but doesn's freeze enemies, it's radius isn't as big as a witch doctor's grasping hands, and it doesn't slow as much as the other snares as well). With such poor AoE and crowd control, you'd think this class would be great 1 on 1, but that's not the case either. Single target damage is terrible. You play this class by running away a LOT. Not fun. It's like a combination of all of the worst parts of the assassin and the bowazon from D2. Rage and Discipline don't really work well either. They play completely unrelated. Why not have one go up as the other goes down, forcing a mix of attacks? instead they both diminish separately, and there's a third class of attacks for rage generation. Lame.

    Witch Doctor: I played this class the least, but it seems really fun. I like the pets, and the attacks are pretty decent. Unlike the Demon Hunter with poor single target and poor crowd control, the Witch Doctor does well in both categories. The grasping hands snare is fantastic, and really helps out in groups. Also, the mana pool is a tried and true resource. I'm curious to see how it handles later in the game, but for the beta, it didn't need to be monitored at all.

    In order by my preferences:
    1 - Monk
    2 - Wizard
    3 - Witch Doctor
    4 - Barbarian (I feel really weird that the barb is 4th. This class is super fun, just not quite as fun as the ones above it).
    and a very, very distant 5 - Demon Hunter. This class just sucks.


    Quests:
    - I *love* the new quest structure. Not only is the main storyline fun, but the "events" that pop up are interesting, have their own backstories, and provide good rewards. Very cool! If the quests for the whole game are as fun as those of the Beta, we're really going to be in for a treat!


    Crafting:
    - The other major system I got to explore in beta was the crafting system, and I like it so far. The rewards are definitely stronger than most items that drop in the beta, so crafting is well worth it. In addition, the fact that the smith etc. are shared between all of your heroes is very nice - you don't have to grind the same recipes over and over and over. I wish there was a way to use the "fallen tooth" that I keep getting from salvaging my crappy blues, but maybe I just haven't found the recipe yet. In general, I really enjoy crafting, and in this game the crafting has seen a lot of polish.

    Graphics and Sounds:
    - Top notch. I can't even explain how disgustingly satisfying both of these elements are. The thwack of the barb's axe flaying the skin off of a thorn beast is just great! Once again, Blizzard has raised the bar for presentation.


    Ending thoughts: I'm buying this game, no question. Great job Blizzard! Hopefully the Demon Hunter class will get some love, because I will never play it in its current state, and hopefully the Monk's tele-punch gets an animation and more fluid camera movement... Nothing should ever be designed to mimic bugs and lag. Even so, this is a fun, FUN game. Thanks for the open beta weekend, Blizz!
    Posted in: Diablo III General Discussion
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    posted a message on Can you enter the beta now?
    I get "error 75, battle.net service temporarily unavailable" every time I try to log in. Been that way for 30 minutes now.
    Posted in: Technical Support
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    posted a message on Template: Item List (Diablo II)
    Awesome! Super Awesome! And poop. Seriously though, thank you for helping out with this. I know the major focus is on D3, but the whole wiki team has been very responsive and welcoming. I really appreciate it!
    Posted in: DiabloWiki
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    posted a message on Template: Item List (Diablo II)
    So I tried in relative vain tonight to convert the Template: Item List from D3 to D2 in order to create a Template: Item List (Diablo II).

    I *think* all that needs to be done, really, is to copy and paste the D3 one into a new template page, and then manually change all of the listed elements to match the items shown on the Template: Item Box (Diablo II) page. Am I right? If so, I can do this. If not, what does need to be done to make the Item List template exist for D2 items?

    I should mention that in order for me to convert my lists into wiki-pages that reference the data that Apoc so generously prepped, I need this template to work. Until then we're looking at either manual data entry for each item in the list (boo) or really clunky looking collections of item boxes that won't really show comparative data any better than what already exists (also boo).
    Posted in: DiabloWiki
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    posted a message on Wiki Digest
    Haha, I'm working on the lists!

    I've been temporarily sucked into a vortex of Modern Warfare 3 (10!) and Skyrim (9.5!), but those D2 lists are coming!

    Uh... don't expect magic here, either. I'm a wiki-noob and I have a dearth of spare time, so while my aims are heavenly the actual mark may be much more terrestrial. For more specifics on the lists, you can always check out my wiki profile.

    Edit: Apoc, you're a God. That's a huge amount of data to move! Thanks for that!!!
    Posted in: News & Announcements
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    posted a message on The Reset is Imminent!
    Quote from cherd

    I figured that I would give D2 another shot with the new ladder reset. I always enjoyed the resets because everyone started from scratch, and finding those low level items became exciting again. But it wasn't a week into the reset and everyone is running around at level 95 wearing Enigmas and EBOTD's. What the hell?

    When the ladder resets, doesn't someone have to legitimately find a high rune before it can be duped? There's no way that all of these runes have already been found. Or maybe they have, I don't know. In any case, I gave my account away. It's probably a good thing, I need to get some work done before D3 is released.

    The number of bots currently farming the game is astronomical. If you think about the quantity of bots in public games, and then think about how easily you could just program 8 bots to join the same private farming game and clear the whole thing super-fast for runes... well, you see why blizzard is trying to put an end to bot-farming in D3. It really is absurd. As much as bots can make power leveling easier, the fact of the matter is that they ruin the game. It's not fun to just follow a program endlessly while you level up, and it's certainly not fun to find a rare item when there are already 40,000 of them in circulation because of the army of undead computer zombie bots farming endlessly for their demonic overlord's amusement and (meager) income.
    Posted in: Diablo II
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    posted a message on Ultimate Random Chat Thread [URT] v4
    Quote from apples

    thats good!

    i want to live on mars, or at least in space...im am now depressed and disappointed i was born too early. <_

    I just want my flying car. It's 2011 for crying out loud!!!
    Posted in: Off-Topic
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    posted a message on Mini-Toons
    Quote from MallowOni

    I'm not sure I want to do any caster builds since they tend to suffer at low levels due to lack of mana, though the bow/summon druid sounds strange enough to be fun. How does it work? Does it require certain gear?

    I've always played bowazons of some variety, hence why I want to go for a poison javazon. It might not be great, but it's something I haven't done. I could do some sort of lightning javazon instead if there was any compelling reason, but I haven't found one yet.

    Bow Druid is essentially a pure summoner. You'll use heart of wolverine though, instead of heart of the oak. This will increase your bow damage by quite a bit. Use your summoned critters as a living wall, and you can stand back with impunity blasting away with the bow of your choice. There's no need for any elemental or shapeshifting skills at all (though I find the wind armor is always worth having). In a long-form play, you want the rune word bow that give fanaticism aura, but in the short time frame you're looking at, it will be more about finding a bow with lots of physical damage to take advantage of your heart of the wolverine. Alternately, the witch wild sting is very good as the amp damage benefits all of your critters.

    For merc choice, a might merc is probably the best one out there. In low levels, I'd recommend sticking with the rogue so you have a partner in archery.


    As Apples says, poison javs take a while to kill things, but it makes for interesting play: Shoot, dance around the mob for a while, watch it die. Mana is hardly an issue since you attack so rarely, and you can ignore +IAS items altogether for the same reason. You also have the added benefit of not needing any real gear - the poison damage is so high that it easily eclipses whatever weapons you may be using. If you're soloing the game, it should be plenty of damage to one-shot most guys, though boss fights might be rough. Get a really tanky merc (defense aura, imo) so he can soak the damage while your poison does its trick, or get a ranged merc to dance along side you (act 3 merc, maybe - lightning has some aoe ability to help with groups. Rogue isn't bad either). The only real problem with poison zons is the prevalence of poison immunes in nightmare and hell. If you move past normal, you'll need to put points into something else (lightning fury or freezing arrow, imo, but those are clearly my favorite zon abilities).


    Oh - a fireclaws druid is really fun, too! You max fire claws and then put points into ele skills like crazy. Fireclaws easily climbs over 5k per hit in wolf form, plus you'll have great ele skills for situations where you don't want to melee the baddie, or you need aoe. Also throw 1 point into all of the summons up to grizzly and use +skills to beef those further. This is a build that is 100% about weapon speed - ideally it wants a 5 socket phase blade with all IAS jewels or runes. AND it combos with Fury, so you can build Fury stacks to further increase attack and run speed, and then use fire claws to blow enemies away. I really enjoyed this build, though it struggles with Hell.
    Posted in: Diablo II
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    posted a message on Mini-Toons
    Tiger Strike sin is great for low levels.

    I also recommend multi-shot-azon, charged bolt sorcy, holy fire pally, Firestorm druid... all very powerful low level builds. Fury barb also should be viable (though it will mostly be a 'dual strike' barb cause of the low levels. Bash-a-din too? Lots of good options.

    If you want an interesting play, try a bow/summon druid. Weird, weird play, but pretty powerful. Poison javs zon is fun, too, but really not until past level 30 when the damage becomes literally absurd (I think my best was 42k over 27 seconds or something like that. The strat was to thow a jav and then go make a drink while whatever I hit died). Might not be the best for your purposes.
    Posted in: Diablo II
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    posted a message on The Definite Article in Item Names
    Quote from Wynthyst

    The wiki software automatically sorts by page title. and page titles are designated by in game names. We can override that, but since 99% of our categorization is done via the templates, it becomes problematic.

    You can always leave "The" out of your search and it should still return the appropriate result.

    Good to know, thanks!
    Posted in: DiabloWiki
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