Ladies and Gentlemen I have been gone and quiet for a long time. I think it's time I start getting back into the forums and being active with D3 again, it's a pretty exciting time with a looming expansion.
I've made another Video Podcast and I'm focusing on the removal of the Auction House this time around (isn't everyone?) because I think it has far reaching implications for Blizzard beyond the whole "buy gear now, lose carrot on a stick" issue we've been seeing.
As always, because I love Diablofans and this is a forum, I'll give a synopsis here.
When Diablo 3 hit there was a lot wrong with the game, but certainly there was a lot right. Gameplay, music, sound, animations, everything that made a game feel good to play was there. The game, however, was plagued by always online requirements, impossibly high difficulty walls, and loot that gave no real satisfaction.
Many issues have been resolved and while I bear no hatred to Jay Wilson, I'm glad to see the Diablo 3 team moving in a positive direction with the new expansion pack. With Loot 2.0, we're going to see it become easier to get loot that's self found and we're going to see items that offer changes in how we play the game. This creates a problem with an Auction House.
So when they add in all these cool procs, the first thing someone's going to do is find out which is more efficient and players will go buy that item. They will forget about all the other cool procs and how they could make fun builds and just go for what works the best, it just seems to be in human nature. I submit that not having an Auction House will cause people to experiment more. They will have a hodgepodge set of gear that isn't optimal and they will find a set of skills they find fun and start enjoying the game.
The second issue I see being resolved is the hard to balance skills and items that have plagued Blizzard since day 1. When IAS was nerfed there was a huge outcry, and I can't help but wonder if this would have been such a big deal if people hadn't gone out and bought all this gear to be efficient. If it was a nice to have stat that you had to find for yourself, would you have cared if it was nerfed?
Let's take that a step further and look at the Monk skill One With Everything. This skill has been a terror for Blizzard because most monks use it and they can't nerf it without making all that gear people BOUGHT become useless. So they tell us over and over again they want to change it but can't figure out how to do it fairly. Now that the AH is going away, it's going to be harder and harder to find that perfect set of gear to use with One With Everything and it's going to lose it stature and people will start finding other skills to use.
I think this is probably the biggest obstacle that Blizzard had to remove. Without the Auction House, Blizzard is free to think about skills and gear without worrying about what people bought, without having to be fair about what you traded for it. They can make changes that they feel will balance out the game as well as open up some creativity with how some of these skills work. They won't have to worry about "what happens if someone stacks this type of gear" because it will be rare. Certainly there will still be trading and 3rd party sites will pop up, but that's not Blizzard's problem anymore. If someone trades or buys on a 3rd party site, Blizzard isn't responsible for that transaction and doesn't have to change their skills to reflect that anymore.
I, for one, am really interested to see how this will play out and think Diablo 3 can have a bright future. Now Blizzard just has to follow up with some good gear for the xpack. Diablo 2 didn't become the game people know and love until after Lord of Destruction, so let's see if Diablo 3 can follow suit. Diablo 2 had about 3-4 years of tuning (expansion pack and additional content after), so it's not like there isn't time.
So now that I've brought this discussion into play, I'm interested to see if it's changed your thoughts on the AH going away for good or ill. Please by all means leave some feedback and discussion I'll be actively watching here and on the YT comments. <3 to Diablofans.
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