Patch 1.0.4 Interview with Jay Wilson and Andrew Chambers
With patch 1.0.4 hitting live servers tomorrow, we were able to get in a few quick questions with Jay Wilson and Andrew Chambers about changes coming in patch 1.0.4. If you are behind with any of the latest 1.0.4 Information, check the following links out
- Official Patch Notes
- Paragon Leveling System
- Systems Preview
- Legendary Previews
- Barbarian Class Preview
- Demon Hunter Class Preview
- Monk Class Preview
- Witch Doctor Class Preview
- Wizard Class Preview
First off there is all the skill buffs for all the different classes. Every class is getting updates to insure that the skills that weren't being used before are getting buffed up so that they are more viable now. Players will be able to have more build diversity and have more options there. It’s something we feel is very valuable about Diablo being able to try out your different skills. Before that wasn't very viable, but now hopefully after all the buffs it will be very easy to do.
We’re also updating pretty much all the Legendaries in the game to be way more awesome and Legendary of course! Over 300 Legendaries and we pretty much touch all of them to make them more unique and more flavorful, and make them stand out and be more fun and legendary to play with.
We have also added some new updates to the Auction House. Usability stuff and things that a lot of the players and the community have been asking for. Things like more affixes to search for, and being able to cancel auctions that don't have any bids on them.
And of course the big whammy, the Paragon system that we announced earlier today. Which is the system that allows you to continue playing after level 60 and continue earning Paragon levels which provide you with fixed continual updates to your MF, GF, and an increases to your core attributes as well.
One question a lot of players are asking is about + experience gems, will this be working with the Paragon system?
Yes, +experience does work with the Paragon system.
With that, will we be seeing +exp affixes show up on ilvl 63 items?
We spoke about it internally, we think it's something that takes up a really valuable slot for a lot of players, if you want to replace an existing stat with +experience. So we are not going to be adding that to this patch.
What about Experience shrines in Inferno?
No, they are still out. We didn't want to jump on putting those back for a variety of reasons. Part of it was just not throwing too many changes at once. But we did put an experince buff onto the Nephalem Valour stacks. So now whenever you get a stack, you get 15% increase to experience gain and that stacks 5 times. So a lot of the bonuses that we are putting in those places, we just moved them to Nephalem Valour to reinforce that system.
One of the comments made in the blog stated it should take players the same time to get level 100 as it did for players to get to level 99 in Diablo 2. How long do you feel it should take?
It will vary on how you're doing and how much +exp gear you're using. But even if you're maxing out your Nephalem Valour stacks and using a lot of +exp gear it should still take hundreds and hundreds of hours.
One question a lot of players were asking, Paragon Levels will be per character and not per account correct?
What made the choice for 300 to be the cap for MF? (Without the NV added)
Well it's because right now you can't get 300, so we didn't want to set the cap at a number, that would essentially have someone who was already getting a bunch of MF getting nerfed. Going into the game now, the cap is not going to affect anyone who is at their gear right now. But as you gain Paragon Levels, you'll slowly lose the need for some of that MF. You'll be able to transfer that one attribute towards something that gives you more raw power or survivability.
We definitely wanted to phase out the idea of MF being an item focused stat. But we didn't want to do it in a harsh manner, we wanted to do it in a slow manner.
Is there a chance you might go back and be like “you can go above 300 MF if you have some on your gear”, or do you feel comfortable with this choice?
Part of the reason we did that is we feel that Magic Find on items creates a lot of decisions for players that we don’t feel that, at the end of the day, are very fun. As we played the game live we came to that feeling. We always felt like MF is all right, then we play it and it just doesn't create a great situation that we are putting players in. We are essentially asking them to trade current power for future power and that is not an uninteresting choice, but is also not a very fun choice. You want to be powerful now, you don’t want to have to wait for power. So you already have to spend a lot of time in Diablo to get your power up, and now we're asking you to self-nerf yourself. And it creates a lot of issues with item swapping. We don’t think item swapping before a boss kill is very fun. It’s not an activity that we want to see in the game. So we are looking for a way to long term discourage that, without just flat out killing MF on all items. We think that would have been a big mistake, that would have felt terrible.
A lot of users are still wondering about MF on chests, is this something we will be seeing?
No, we are not planning on adding MF back to chests for the same reasons we talked about before. We don’t like the gear swapping people do with chests. Chests are one of those things that REALLY makes you want to stop and open your inventory and swap your gear, and then open the chest. So we are not planning on adding it back for those reasons.
On the first blog you commented “monsters have a x4 chance to drop Magic and Rare”. Why did you decide not to add Legendaries to this?
Because Legendaries are really good!
We are actually very happy where the Legendary drop rate is past level 50. Players with higher MF do see them fairly often. It is random, we have the edge cases where players have never ever seen a legendary, ever. But we want to make sure they still feel unique and special when they drop. If they were dropping at the same rate as, say, a rare, they just wouldn't feel any good, like it would be “oh I'm just covered in Legendaries, that’s fine, but it's not interesting any more”. But if they are dropping rarely they have this appeal.
This was not covered in the blogs, but users were wondering if there will be any changes to the lower ilvls dropping in Inferno?
We are okay with where it is now. We like that there are a number of different items that drop in Inferno. We like the decision making that it encourages players to engage in. We are still considering stuff.
Back to the first blog. It talked about fire chains and shield affixes that you were working on along with others. Do you have any more information on that?
Most of the changes are just tuning. Most of it is, we just kind of reduced the damage of this. It’s one of those things that, when we do press on changes, they are usually changes that we have been playing with for a month, so we don't always remember it entirely. That’s why we make patch notes!
The big one for us was removing the invulnerable minions. That’s something players would encounter and wouldn't be able to overcome. It just didn’t feel fun. It wouldn’t be interesting. It was not something that you could get better gear and just overcome it. There is nothing in the game that can do that. So it just doesn't fit into the general philosophy of these challenges where they should feel tough when you first encounter them, but when you gear up, they should feel less challenging and easier to deal with.
You mentioned before how you wanted to improve pet AI, and even some Monster AI’s (for example the wasps in Act 2)?
Some of them we already have done, a lot of the monsters we got in before 1.0.4. The wasps are a good example. We tuned them to run away a little less so they weren't so frustrating to fight. For pets it’s hard to answer that question without specifics. I can’t think of anything at the top of my head, but that doesn't mean we didn't do anything. I can’t think of anything really major.
You said for the Demon Hunter you wanted to change up Grenades but just didn't have the time. Were there other skills you thought you could do neat things with that you just didn't have time for, that we might see in the future?
I think we hit everything we wanted to hit. I don't think there was anything we held back on in this patch. At least in terms of player skills. Our goal was when this was done, we got the classes in a good place for a while. Now we play it in live, and see how players react. We might make more changes in the future, but it's going to be based off what we see in these changes.
There was talk, back during the Reddit AMA, about bosses dropping rares on the first kill past normal difficulty. Did this make it into 1.0.4?
That did not make it into 1.0.4, but it is still something we want to add to the game.
There were some blue posts mentioning the Trade UI upgrade, any information on that?
We made some improvements to trading to try and capture some of the shenanigans people are doing with trading. But we did make some improvements, they are not visual improvements, they are more functional to prevent things like trade spoofing and stuff like that.
Could we see a Ladder system get tied into the new Paragon system?
Currently no. We don't have any plans to do a ladder system. Probably the question for that is "are we going to have some kind of seasons for the game like Diablo 2 did". I said in the past we are not really interested in doing that, but I really should clarify that. The idea of doing seasons is a really good idea and something we should introduce to Diablo 3 at some point. I don’t see no reasons for it to be at launch, as that is Season 1. We don't have to worry about it till we do Season 2. What im not really keen on is leveling being the primary element that motivates doing a new season. I don’t think it appeals to that many people.
The people that like it really love it and they compete. But everybody knows it does not take that long to get to level 60 in Diablo 3, and it did not take that long to get to level 99 when you level raced in D2. The people that would do that race, they would do it for a couple weeks, and then essentially the season would be over, and the ladder would be over, and that is something we do not want. We want something that feels like as if we introduced seasons, We want whatever the motivation to join the new season be to be more appealing to a broad group of people. That’s not to say we don’t want it to be appealing to our more hardcore dedicated players. We want it to be super appealing to them as well. We just think there are other things than “lets all just level up a level ladder”. So totally for Seasons, not really that keen on the level ladders because I just don't think a big part of the audience benefits from it. If you're basically not in the top 100, who cares?
That means that basically 100 people think it’s awesome, and maybe a couple more hundred think its cool because they think one day they will be in it and to me it’s like, ok really? Like, we are going to put a big feature in, and I’m not saying those people are wrong, or that I don't want to make something for them, I just think we can do better than that.