Zero, we did have this out in another thread, and you're right...balance and variety are the key words here. And you're not entirely wrong in your claims...Quote from Zero(pS)
Balance and variety are probably the key words here.
I'm not sure if you agree with me, but see if you do.
If some of your items come from killing random trash enemies, some come from epic battles with elites and (mini/)bosses, some come from trading with friends because they upgraded or are from a different class, some come from trading with a random guy you found in a public game or general chat and you came to an agreement, and even one awesome legendary comes from breaking a barrel - and all that doesn't make your character perfect, but allows you to tackle challenges and keep searching for upgrades, the game experience feels awesome.
Now if every single piece of gear you have comes from your drops (because all items are fine tuned and you get max stat items handed to you left and right), or if from vendors/gambling/crafting, or if everything comes from trading with strangers or being handed leftovers by every friend who has only played a couple more hours than you.
That's precisely ywhen the item hunt starts to feel shitty to most people, imo.
In the current state of the game, I feel like they either don't care too much about that balance, or are struggling to achieve it. To me, they're still miles away from a rewarding item hunt experience (for reasons I stated in another thread regarding Smart Drops and overly babysitting player drops).
However, in all your criticisms of Smart Drops, and saying it's tuned to happen way too much, I don't see one single mention from you of the community VASTLY despising how too much RNG has made Diablo 3 an unnecessarily harrowing strugglein terms of hunting loot. Personally, yes...many people, like me, have found great enjoyment in playing "self-found", however the cold hard fact is...in Diablo 3, much of the reward of the challenge of playing self-found came from attempting to succeed with 1) drop rates of high end legendaries that are CRUSHED due to the presence of the Auction House, and 2) an oppressive amount of RNG that didn't simply make the loot hunt challenging...itobliterated 99% of gear into being absolute garbage, without a prayer of being viable in endgame...which forced people back into the Auction House...which iswhat really, as you say, "made the item hunt feel shitty to most people."
You say above..."If a player gets items from here and there, and the items don't make a character perfect, but they allow the player to keep tackling challenges and searching for upgrades, the game feels awesome." You're absolutely right! :-D Problem is...1) Players were so disheartened by the quality of loot, the most common place to "hunt loot" was the Auction House, and many AH campers didn't even like doing it,2) Players choosing to go self-found were very often not just "imperfect"...they were often unable to handle MP higher than 3 or 4, and that's when using the most common OP skill builds and item combos many don't even like using because they feel they "have to.". Look at my signature...it's no lie, on the live game, my Monk can often handle MP7 with no Life Steal or Life on Hit, and dreadful Attack Speed. He does die once in a while, but to say he hasn't gotten an upgrade in quite a few months is a pretty strong understatement. So I ask you...exactly how hard do you think a "loot hunt" should be in order to be considered rewarding? You're saying Smart Drops "babysit" players, as if a loot hunt is only rewarding when players are sifting through mountains of items for ANYTHING at all that's good.
And do you think a loot hunt should be challenging to find the RIGHT items a person WANTS, or about struggling to find anything good at all? If you answered yes to the second question, then I'm sorry you're so unhappy. From what I've seen of the community, most people want to answer yes to the first question...they want items to be powerful, and to make choices based on a wide VARIETY of strong items, as opposed to filling their packs with useless junk they don't have the heart to sift through. You're seeing Smart Drops as severely homogenizing items, that make it insanely easy to get "maxed out stats". Isee it as simplifying the basic (almost boring)things people want/need on items (like mainstat and vitality) by having them appear more often, thus making other affixes that people hardly ever look for now (like Health Globe bonus, Thorns Damage, andSkill Damage) more desirable and easier to build around. And Primary and Secondary stats being separated reduces the amount of overpowered combinations Full RNG has yielded (like quintfectas) as the only "good items" that are pretty much impossible to get to drop (but still manage to trivialize items that don't have ALL those conditions), and instead, creates the chances of affix combinations that are easier to determine whether they're meant for more offensive or defensive specs.
Bottom line, Zero...all Blizzard is doing with Smart Drops is filtering things out so players get to decide which good items they like enough to equip, instead of bombarding them with items they don't like, don't want, and aren't even good enough to use as a personal choice in endgame without feeling like they're severely gimping themselves, and it shouldn't be that way. Trust me...I want to continue defending RNG.I don't mind items having more randomness. I've obviously put up with it until now. But in the current live game, loot is abyssmal. Don't get me wrong, I have seriously enjoyed self-found...buttoo much RNG has made this game a running inside joke to a lot of people, and if something drastic, like Smart Drops,eitherisn't done or isn't done enough when the updates go live, players who hated loot before won't just shrug it off and deal with it again...they may just quit for good because they hit their last straw..
Then again, for all the talk both of us have done on this subject today, it could just be for nothing. Some players won't be happy no matter what Blizzard does to this game. They wear their rose-colored glasses and surgically pick D3 apart, using anylogic they can to find any reason why new systems won't fix the game's problems, all the while ignoring the problems that occurred with itemization in the past. Ultimately, any improvements Blizzard makes to D3 could be entirely fruitless, pointless and unsuccessful because the community refuses to give them an inch.The Diablo community has always, and likely will always, feel they know more than Blizzard does and many (not all) can't enjoy D3 anymore without overanalyzing it.
This game could become perfect tomorrow, and if that happened, people wouldn't know what to do with thsemselves, because there'd be nothing to complain about anymore.
So, like you said, let's agree to disagree, put this to bed, and you're free tohave the last word on it.