Now.. Now.. I'm excited BOOYAH!!
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Sep 17, 2013snowhammer posted a message on Diablo III Auction House is Shutting Down on March 18, 2014Posted in: News & Announcements
Feb 21, 2013Well, like some of you I imagine, I was watching the Play Station event yesterday online and had the shock/supprise of seeing Chris Metzen announce Diablo 3 is coming to the Playstation 3/4.Posted in: Diablo III General Discussion
After the initial shock wore off - it all started making sense.
I know a lot of the people left on this site are pretty much happy with the game and love playing it (more power to you), but for folks like me that spent years devouring development news, looking forward to this game more than any other EVER, and feel let down by it, yesterday provided a bit of an epiphany.
This game shifted during development from being Diablo 3, the sequel to Diablo 2: LoD, to being Diablo 3 for Consoles.
The evidence is so clear. All those late decisions that got dropped on us back during late 2010, and all through 2011 make so much sense now. This game had to be easy and simple to work on a console.
Skill System (runes not itemized)
Runes, which were supposed to be itemized, were changed to be part of the UI. When we finally saw that UI, my first thought was "really? this is a joke right?". The UI and really the whole skill/rune system feels like a port from a console game. Pick your skill, drop down box, pick your rune effect.
(To answe Maffia: As you say, Blizzard chose not to go that route. I wonder why? Consoles. Look at Path of Exile!! The Itemized skills works GREAT in that game. They chose not to address that so that the game could be made for consoles.
6 Skills at once (Thanks Maffia for the pointer forgot they changed it from 7 to 6 - again late in development)
Square, Triangle, Circle, X, Left Shoulder, Right Shoulder, Left Trigger, Right Trigger
6 Skills, two potions. Point is, simple is better. Point is, it makes much more sense to build a game that confines you to 6 choices when you realize its build for a console gamepad.
If you, like me, were/are very un-impressed by the supposed "randomness" of Diablo 3, than coming to the realization that the game is supposed to be played on a Console makes it all make sense. Its areas are perfectly designed to be walked through on a console, with multi players.
(To Answer Maffia: I'm not "HAHAing" at Console gamers. Its just a simple fact that if you intend for a game to be played split screen with 4 players, the environment needs to be linear.)
You level up, and have more skills to chose from. Thats it. It always felt to me like just a grose simplification that really had no justification other than "it just makes it more simple". Well, guess what, BINGO. Simple Simple Simple, so you can play it on your couch.
(To Answe Maffia: Late in development, that stats were changed to be more stragithforward, the skill trees were removed, spending points at level up was removed, and we ended up with basically having more "perks" to chose from when you level. Sounds like another Activision game to me..)
No one wants to use a spread sheet for a console game - so, now we know why the itemization is so straight forward in Diablo 3.
(To answer Maffia: My point is this: in Diablo 3, you don't think about your gear beyond just wanting maor!!. There are no oddball builds that become viable with certain itemization. No number crunching you can do to make a particular weak skill become godly with proper itemzation. Its just, Find primary stats, Health, Crit% and Dam and Attack speed. Do this for every character you have. Simple. Simple because its made for consoles. In a way this is good news for me. I thought the developers were just that bad, that making the items the way they did was just a massive screw up. But it makes sense now)
4 Player's only
We heard it was because there was too much onscreen clutter. Ok.. I don't buy it. It was because 4 Players works on a console.
(To answer Maffia: Oh really? Call of Duty lets more people play than 4? Shock. Guess how many can play on one system though? 4. 4 Player split screen. In the words of Chris himelf "One Couch to Rule them all")
Lack of Game Creation / Game names
Sorry, but it seems to me like the whole "auto join / auto match maker" system was designed specifically for the console crowd. This makes sense now too.
Look, hate on me if you will (I'm sure you will, and thats ok) but when I heard this news.. I just kinda let out a long sigh.. and the lightbulb went off for me.
Call me a hater, tell me to go on my way, tell me to leave this site if I'm done playing.. but you know what? No! I spent 2 years of my life devouring everything about this game. I've earned the right to voice my opinion on here as long as I like.
I still care about the game, I still (for some insane reason) feel like it could get better. Heck, I even enjoyed the game while I played it to a point. But, the fact remains, that I feel like Blizzard pulled the chair out from under me and about a zillion other Diablo fans. Its their game, they can do what they want to with it, but man.. I feel like all the big (and to me annoying) game changes that came late in development were made just to accomodate consoles.
You can think Diablo 3 is a great game. As I said at the start, more power to you! I really am glad you like it. But, to take this IP which I love so Dearly and make it a Console game (at its heart) really bothers me.
I know some people say "You don't know Diablo, if you did you would know that Diablo was already on a Console, so this is no big deal". Well, your right, except that no one knows about that Console Version of Diablo for PS1 because it was SOO bad. And it should have been. Diablo was a pure PC ARPG, trying to put that in a console should never work.
Sadly, the reverse is true with Diablo 3. So, I feel the console version will work quite well. Heck, I'll buy it, I like console ARPGs. It was, after all, built to be a console ARPG.
Jan 22, 2013I was soo excited for D3. Ive put in 1000+ hours into D3 and have come to the sad sad sad, reluctant conclusion that its a failed game.Posted in: Other Games
Not in the sense that I didn't enjoy it, and not in the sense that it is totally horrible, but in the sense that it doesn't do a number of key things that the Genre should do:
In my opnion, ARPG's and for the love of god, Diablo, should focus more than anything on Replayability. Diablo 3 has very minimal replayability. I'm not talkking about grinding. Grinding for items is the "ultimate" goal in these gmaes. I'm talking about the need, desire and FUN of clicking "Create" and starting a brand spanking new character.
It should feel like a fresh new challenge and be somthing that you think of like this "I can't wait to start a new Templar - I wan't to try out "X" build and "X" skill sets.
Path of Exile, in my expirience in beta, has this in spades. In the beta thus far, I have made at least 10 characters and leveled them to 30+, each time was a new route on the tree and a different focus on skills.
In Diablo 3, after 1000+ hours and 8 months of release, I have 4 characters. I never even felt the need (or desire) to make the final class as all the items in D3 work for every class the same (for the most part).
2: Amazing Itemization
Diablo 3's items are HORRIBLE. They are somewhat addictive to hunt for (need that perfect roll!), but there is no thought behind your gear choices. You want Crit, Crit Damage, IAS and your primary stat. Throw in some stam and resistance if you can. Thats it for EVERY class. This genre should have that feeling of "Ohhh snap, that item I just picked up would be AMAZING for "X" class or "X" build.
Diablo 3 Fails at that big time. Path of Exile on the other hand. Oh boy! Again in spades! For example - I had been thinking about building a Templar that would Focus on Lighting Strike and and use as many Auras as I could get mana for reserve. So, I wanted to use Eldritch Battery (A passive that takes your Energy Shield and converts it to mana) for a big mana pool. Well.. i happened upon a simingly "bad" pair of Unique boots that SCREAMED to me "WoW! These would be PERFECT for that build. It has 100% increased Energy Shield - of course not end game, but for a start to making a HIGH mana pool-Eldritch Battery build it would be awesome!
This is just the tip of the ice when it comes to the amazing items in PoE - you have to "think" when you look at them. You have to have them in mind when chosing passives. You have to have items in mind when chosing your skills. In short, the itemization is spot, on, perfect!
3: Skill system that makes you want to make new characters
This goes back a bit to replayability, but Diablo 3 has, what I thought to be, a GREAT concept for skills. 5 ways to use every skill! Sounds awesome right!? Well it is, except that you can use them all at any time.. so.. there ends up being no real thought process behind the system at all. In fact, the interface for chosing skills is so straightforward, it needs to be exlpained BECAUSE of how easy it is: "So, where are my skills points spent?" Answer: "You don't spend skill points, you just choise your skill" - Uhh.. ok?
Path of Exile uses what SHOULD have been the great concept in D3 and does it right. D3 originaly had Skill Gems - the thought of finding skills in the world was AWESOME! I remeber being VERY sad when the scratched the idea. They said "it was to hard to implement" or in other words "They didn't trust their players to be smart enough to be able to handle the inventory".
Enter PoE. Skills gems working beautifully and I love it! The room for expasnion to the system is endless. It truly is a thing of beauty!
Look, Diablo 2 (two!) did it wrong. Players had to make their own currency (Jordans) - Diablo 3 tried to make it so easy to trade your items that you barely have to think. The result - actual item hunting is nearly pointless. You instead are grinding gold / items you dont want but can sell / so that you cna make that next purchase.
PoE, once again, hits the nail right in the face. The economy seems SO great from my expirience in the beta.
I wanted a Tempest Shield Skill Gem recently. I could have replayed the first act and grabed one from a quest reward, but I had a Jewelers Orb and someone else with a Tempest Shield Gem was willign to trade. Was it fair? WHo knows really, but I was happy and he was.
Having an Auction House was such a bad idea in Diablo 3. It made items totally worthless - over time it has made only the absolute BEST rolled items worth anything at all.
You should have to do a little bit of work to trade your items in a game like this - why? Because some (most?) people won't bother. They will either save the item or discard it rather than search for a fair trade - that preserves the economy!!@!
5: End Game
This one is short: Diablo 3 had none at launch. Now it has a endless grind for a remakeable legendary ring. Soon, it will have craftable ilvl63 (endgame) 6 prefix gear to re reoll over and over and over. I'm sorry, but this doesn't cut it nowadays.
Path of Exile - Maps. Holy heck what an amazing idea (I know they didn't toally invent the idea) Having Maps be an itemzied system with rarities and properties is just awesome! So awesome! Your still doing the "grind" but in a fun way!
Lastly - I cant wait to devour this game (PoE) once the final reset happens tommorrow. I fully intend to play this game for a very very very long time. Everything I dislike about D3 is done right in this game - and I couldn't be more excited!
Jan 17, 2013As someone who basically has given up on D3 (and who was more excited for it than any game ever pre launch) - I can't help but be happy about this.Posted in: News & Announcements
I like Jay. I really really do. Everytime I hear him speak I think "I bet he's awesome to hang out with in real life".
I've even liked some of the directions he took D3.. and of course, I feel a bit of an attachment to him as no other game director have I personally scrutinized to the extent I did with Jay.
All that said, so many of the choices, design goals, and ultimately the direction the entire game has gone in are in places that I feel are not good for the longevity of the game, nor for my continued enjoyment of the game - that I feel this is good news.
This at least gives me hope that the "new lead" is willing to revisit some of the choices that have been made.. perhaps take the expansion in a new direction.
Time will tell - Best of Luck Jay - hope the future works out for him!
Dec 27, 2012Wow.. just.. wow.Posted in: News & Announcements
I spent soo many hours (years!) looking forward to D3.. theory crafting before we even had anything to theory craft.
I've played TONS of D3 and for the most part enjoyed the time - so I can't really say that I think the game is a terrfic failure.
But does it / has it fallen WAY short of my hopes and dreams? Absolutely.
The last two months or so have been a "wait for PvP" time for me - hoping that my D3 love would be rekindled.
Now with this news.. I'm ready to really and actualy move on. Path of Exile is SO amazing (been in the beta for almost half a ayear and it just keeps getting better and better with every patch). I'll be playing the heck out of it.
I'm not calling D3 a failure, or a bad game. Its not. But its nothing even remotely close to what I hoped it would be (for me at least) while spending over a year of my life devouring every piece of development news.
I'll of coruse keep tabs on the game - I'll give dueling a try - I'd also be lying if I said I wont still be hoping / praying for a better game to come of it all with future patches / expansions. But for the time being.. I'm moving on to PoE.
Been fun hanging out here (not been around alot of late), espacialy during development.
Sep 14, 2012Posted in: News & Announcements
Change OWE to give you 50% all resist for ANY other elemental resist not just your highest. It would result in an effective 50% nerf to the passive, but not make our double reset gear worthless, while also making gearing as a monk easier (any double resist works)
If the goal is to not make Monk's current double resist gear worth less, than they have already indirectly done that with all the nerfs to inferno. 25% less damage means our double resist gear is 25% less necessary, so its less valuable.
I think the goal is to just not make us have to change gear - the above would do that, while also nerfing the passive, but sorta/kinda buffing Monk's gearing in general since any resist on an item would take advantage of the passive.
Sep 5, 2012Of course people will say "yet another nerf to the difficulty of the game"..Posted in: News & Announcements
But I think that this is EVEN MORE proof that Diablo 3 is back on track - diablo shouldn't be about building a crazy difficult end game exculsively (there needs to be another mode for that, not just the normal gameplay) it needs to be about finding gear and slaughtering hordes of monsters using diverse sets of skills that are fun to choose from.
This opens up even more build possibilities and I love it.
Two thumbs up from me.
Aug 20, 2012I'm a bit torn on the removal of MF off items (long term) but my gutt, intitial recation is that its a good change. I like the idea of eventually being able to "Out Level" the need to wear magic find. In fact, I like that idea ALOT.Posted in: News & Announcements
Edit* I'm suprised at the addition of Core stats when you leve up - lets say you get 2 Dex per level.. thats 200 more Dex.. pretty huge amount!
Aug 10, 2012Of course this post will come with many many people saying "They said inferno would be hard, now its nerfed to the ground!"Posted in: News & Announcements
Well.. I agree somewhat, but when you read between the lines, I think what they are actually saying is this:
"Look guys, inferno was a bad idea - we meant it to be a flat always hard difficutly, we found out that wouldn't work in testing, but we knew we couldn't remove it because people would have a fit if we removed ANOTHER feature. A side problem was our original intent for END GAME was inferno - well with inferno not working out how we wan't we no longer have an end game - but we're working on that. Here are some changes to make the game play more like it should with out the concept of inferno - stay tuned for more changes to totally fix the game"
Thats what I read. I think the part of me that wants to see a hard game is sad at how easy a time I'll have on my monk in Inferno - It will be face melting hilarity.. but then.. thats what D2 was and I loved it! I don't need 5 min champ pack fights - I need fun REWARDING demon melting fun. I think this all sounds like a good first step to that goal.
The Weapon Damage on i lvl 61-62 increase thing is AWESOME. Not only will it make finding weapons more exciting, it will make crafting weapons worthwhile.
So, this is a great first step - I feel like this hits the nail on the head as far as a "look the game is messed up, we can't make it perfect fast (ie in 1 patch) but we are doing these things to make it as good as possible in its current state"
Bravo imo - looking forward to playing again.
Jul 20, 2012So I think you are miss hearing the "whiners" at least the ones who have a legitimate argument.Posted in: Diablo III General Discussion
I am still playing - allbeit loosing interest.
Its not that I want to find an amazingly rolled rare item ever hour - not at all! I think the rate at which I am finding really good Rares is exactly right. Its all about the set/Legnedary drop rates for me. Thats where the loot hunt feels the thinest.
In 250+ hours I've found 2 set items (more than most it seems) and about 9 Legendaries. Thats not enough! We need somthing shinny and Different to drop to make the hunt more exciting. I'd like to see 40-50 set items in 250 hours and 100+ legendaries - the Catch being that its hard to rollup awesome ones - so out of all those, maybe 5 set items were really really valuable and 10 legendaries.
The thing about the "whiners" is that there is more to the complaints than just the drop rate your speaking of - for me, I'm loosing interest, not because of the drop rate, but because the game its self does more to piss me off than get me excited. Rare Skelly packs getting stuck on a corner and healing to full before I realize they stopped following me, cheap affix combinations, rubberbanding while holding shift attack making it near immpossible to navigate Sentries, Molten tracks - I could go on...
I still like the game, I still play the game, I still farm inferno - but to me the biggest problems are actual mechanical problems with the game.
After that (and before drop rates) is the problem with no replay value (if you can call 250+ hours no replay.. hehe) - at least not for Diablo standards. I have 3 60s - I want to play the last two classes up and get act 3-4 quality gear on them too - but the drive isn't there for me. The world of Diablo 3, albeit amazing looking, is just not done Right.. I've tried to put my finger on it, I think back to all that "Different every time you play" stuff we heard.. and I'm just not seeing it. I've played through the game 12 times, then farmed various parts of all the acts endlessly.. and I dont see ANYThing new, ever.. and havn't for a long time. To make matters worse, most of the "rare events" that I was so excited about back in development, I just skip. They aren't worth the time. Most of them end with 800 gold and a pat on the back. Once in a blue moon you get one of the ones that ends with a Purple Uniquemonster, but those don't have a point either. The few that end in Champ/Rare packs are the only ones worth doing.
They need to add more randomness to their randomness. Make all the events have a chance to roll up rare packs.
Lastly, the replayability with each class is severerly lacking.. and its all because of the AH. I know, I know.. you're saying "just don't use it" well thats true, I could not use it.. but as many have pointed out, the game has trained all our minds to use the AH for upgrades.. so its hard to turn that mindset off while leveling. Basically, with about 4-5 trips to the AH while leveling, you can make the entire 3 playthrough untill inferno 100% pointless / easy and no challenge at all. And you'll only have tyo spend maybe 50-100k total during that time.
Now - I look into the future - and I think "what the hell were the Dev's thinking we would all do long term?"
Even the most diehard could only do what we are doing for a year at most.. theres no reason to level alternates of the same class (outside the achievements) and nothing to replace ladder resets.
The whole "freesepc" thing we all argued about endlessly during development, IMO, will turn out to be the biggest killer for Diablo's lifespan. Its a great idea - in theory - "Dont like this spec - try this one out!" But in practice it just flys in the face of what this game should be.. I want to levela new wizard, focusing on a different play style - it would rock! But no reason too.. and I don't have much motivation to jump right in to Inferno with a level 60 mele wizard in gimp gear.. I'd rather have that expirience from the ground up.
Any way - I'm running off on a tangent.. but suffice to say, the game has alot of problems - 1.03 did 1 thing to help, made all acts in inferno somewhat worth playing - lets see if they continue to fix this game.. my gosh I hope they do! Because at this point, I spent about 10 times longer waiting/reading/devouring development news than I have playing the game..
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Sep 5, 2012Posted in: News & Announcements
I went through and read my older posts (pretty funny to do btw, I highly suggest it). Here we go..
1a) Inferno is going to hit too hard and ranged will be 1 shot and it will be lame (http://www.diablofan...post__p__851129)
1b) Pets will be worthless with those damage numbers (http://www.diablofan...post__p__853446)
2) CCs will be too weak->Should do diminishing returns instead (http://www.diablofan...post__p__827179)
3) No one will group because of the scaling damage of monsters in inferno (http://www.diablofan...post__p__864300)
4) No one will group because of the insane monster health scaling in inferno (http://www.diablofan...post__p__864943)
5) People won't want to group due to MF sharing (http://www.diablofan...047#entry785047)
Hire me blizzard :Thumbs Up:
Aug 10, 2012Posted in: News & AnnouncementsQuote from SpinPool
The issue that still stands is: there is no endgame. Just by reaching 60 and finishing off Hell I feel like I'm done. Collecting gear for characters you're never gonna make is useless. Unless you farm in order to sell the gear/gold for real money, but is this a game or a job?
This is all Diablo 2 was. And Diablo. And Titan's Quest. And Torchlight. And Borderlands (which, despite being an FPS, is an ARPG too). And DarkSpore.
What do you want? Raid content like an MMO? I think you don't understand how the genre works...
Jul 20, 2012Posted in: Diablo III General DiscussionQuote from Johannes
Quote from Zero(pS)
The gear check is a lot tighter in D3, specially in each of Inferno's acts.
Even if we could get skills to become slightly more powerful past level 60, and got +100 to all stats by gaining a couple more levels, most of us would probably still have to turn to the AH to get better gear. It's not about "outleveling" content.
I was kinda thrown off and pretty pissed off when I allowed this to hinder the enjoyment I got from playing the game and not actually think about what someone else my perceive to be a waste of time or just not worth it at all. I like farming my way even if it's not efficient.
I hate the AH at times when I think about only because I hate the idea of controlling a market. But it seems like a better option than figuring out all the 'best' sites to trade, putting people on REAL ID, etc. You know the process. I don't like RMAH because I hear all the good stuff is on there and not on the gold side. None of this do I have any actually backing to these feelings or claims I tend to put upon myself.
When I just play it in the way I do, and what's fun to me I don't even think about any of this. If you're one that can't, I don't know what to tell you other than it's your fault you feel that way, no one else.
I'm going to call BS here. Game design, which Blizz in the past has proven they understand, has very established concepts. There are psychological reasons for almost everything they do. Smaller indie companies are often less versed at these things and might make a game just to be fun to gamers. As proof, here is an interesting article from a writer turned game designer discussing some of this psychology:
When you are playing games by major developers, there are no two ways about it, you are being manipulated. When done well, it's fun and you don't really notice. Where I'm going with this, is that the game developer has to build in "wins". Something that is the reward, the carrot on the stick, the little motivating force behind wanting to play more. In D2, it was ID'ing drops that were incremental upgrades or even if you got lucky, godly items.
To say, "I've just accepted that there are no rewards and play only to smash monsters" is ok. If that's fun to you, awesome. To say to anyone else, "If you don't like that, you are the problem" is narrow minded and almost insulting.
The motivator in D3 switched from finding gear to buying gear. That is one of the fundamental reasons many are upset with the game. Another is boring itemization. Another is that players feel too weak. The Diablo title has always been about smashing hordes of mobs. Now, we run from them in a war of attrition that many find disappointing because it is so polar opposite to the previous two Diablo titles.
May 13, 2012Posted in: Diablo III General DiscussionQuote from snowhammer
Happy Day before D3 everyone!
I have seen several reports from different people who have the WoW Annual pass, and so, already have a Digital Retail version of Diablo 3 ascociated with their bnet account, who have gotten errors when trying to upgrade thier account to the CE.
I am in that situation (Have the Annual Pass and Digital Retail) and plan to upgrade my account at about 12:20 when I get home on release night - thats gives me 2 1/2ish hours to get it upgraded Should be plenty of time!
My question is, has there been any confirmation if this is an actual bug yet? Are folks with the Annual pass going to all get errors when trying to upgrade? Or were these repors I read just annomolies?
I did some searching, here and on the bnet forums, and couldn't find anything, but thought if you are in this camp, WoW Annual pass holders planning to upgrade to CE, and have some problems, post here so we can all know!
(After I saw a 4th different person say the same thing, I started to get worried!)
I have this problem, opened a ticket and just got this response:
..bugged spells, errors, hacked, frustration...by your combined power I'm Game Master Sadoryann, solving ingame problems since 2008. It seems that you are offline, sooo here is my explanation/solution to your problem:
Hey there (My name), had a look into this Diablo 3 problem of yours. And if you have the active Annual Pass on your Battle.net account then you will get the D3 automaticly free of charge attached to your account, you can do the pre-download via this site anytime:
There might be an option to update your D3 when the game launches to that of the Collectors Edition that you received but this can only happen after the launch itself
I hope this explains it a bit more.
Have a nice day.
Game Master Sadoryann
English Game Master Team
May 12, 2012Nuvian posted a message on Blizzard Would have been Better off making all Legendaries Level 60Posted in: Diablo III General Discussion
Then sell them or melt them down for components, some of us like finding cool stuff while leveling up, and us hardcore guys die anyways, so we can always use the lower level legendaries we find.Quote from Manoluck
Since it is rather pointless to level up a new character of the same class the focus is going to be endgame rather than Alts.
So once you have 1 of each class any legendary below level 60 is useless.
In D2 this situation was avoided because you had a reason to level up a new class and low level uniques had a purpose for that.
Kind of a waste ....
Mar 19, 2012Posted in: Diablo III General Discussion
I hope you all are as excited as I am about counting down the days to release! With that is the time to start thinking about customizing your hero. The purpose of this article is to take a close look at the underlying design of Diablo III's skills in order to help the community create more powerful hero builds. The opinions contained within are based on my experiences with and understanding of what worked and what didn't in World of Warcraft, Diablo II, and select trading card games.
The following notes will serve to lay down the general procedure of evaluating a skill as well as some basic tips to keep in mind, especially in regards to how a Diablo game plays.
There are various aspects of a skill (and its possible runic alterations) that need to be scrutinized to better understand it. Here is a general guideline to follow:
- Applicable Game Mode
- Which mode of the game does the skill support?
- Player vs Environment (PvE): The standard gameplay.
- Player vs Player (PvP): A mode in which the value of a skill must be determined entirely differently from PvE.
- Hardcore (HC): A specialized mode of PvE that puts higher emphasis on survivability.
- Skill Uptime
- How often does the skill benefit your hero? This is defined by cooldowns, buffs, and automated attacks such as minions.
- Skill Purpose
- Is the skill (by design) an offensive, defensive, or utility tool?
- Single Target vs Area Effect
- How many targets does the skill affect? And, if multiple, how reliable is its hit rate?
- Cost vs Effectiveness
- Consider the resource costs of the skill and what you are getting in return.
Applicable Game Mode
This topic is fairly straightforward and acts as a good starting point on skill evaluation. First and foremost, you'll want to check if the skill matches the game mode you are building your hero for. To do that, you'll need to understand the gameplay concepts that each mode puts higher emphasis on.
Player vs Environment (PvE) is the standard game mode, also known as Softcore, in which your goal is to destroy as many enemies as efficiently as possible. In short, your hero's offensive capabilities are much more important than his defensive capabilities. While defense is still something you should be aware of, it is not strictly vital in this mode. Killing monsters and dying is better than not killing anything at all.
PvE also focuses on the average of your hero's performance. This means that skills with low uptime, such as skills with long cooldowns, are typically substandard and should only be considered for special events like act bosses. It also encourages high cost-effectiveness ratios, because, again, you want to average out the capabilities of your hero over time. Finally, PvE encourages the use of reliable area effect attacks. The style of Diablo encompasses slaying hordes of monsters more often than a single, tougher enemy.
On the other hand, Player vs Player (PvP) is an entirely different game in which your goal is to defeat the enemy player team. This mode often favors high-powered single target damage skills as well as utility skills to either control the opposing team or to enhance your options on the battlefield. It is almost the exact opposite concept of PvE because you no longer care about averaging out your performance. PvP revolves around the use of skills that benefit only the short-term, not the long-term, potency of your hero. Therefore, you should take into consideration powerful skills with cooldowns because the battle is going to be over long before you need to worry about the future availability of your skills.
Players love to impair control, stun, fear, and charm in PvP!
Both offense and defense are crucial in PvP. Because of this, it is always up to your own judgment to balance these two characteristics of your hero. However, don't forget the saying: "The best defense is a good offense."
The third game mode available is Hardcore (HC) mode. This mode mirrors PvE with the incredibly notable exception that survivability will forever take precedence over all other hero attributes. Absolutely nothing is more essential to you than your hero's defense! There's little more to say about HC other than skills that save your life are absolutely paramount.
Understanding the idea of how often a skill is of use to you will aid you immensely in the development of your hero's skill customization. It is also the prime reason why a hero build composed entirely of attack skills cannot be ideal.
The catalyst of the issue at hand is the limitation of available skill slots in Diablo III. This restraint requires that you should aim to receive the most benefit from each of your skill slots as often as possible because your hero can only execute one action at any given time. This puts an increased value on active skills that augment the rest of your arsenal. The gist of it is that "buff" skills are inherently good.
Buffs are active skills that simply make your hero better over the course of their duration. But what follows this is also their uptime ratio. Again, according to your applicable game mode, some buffs are short-term and some are long-term. In regards to standard PvE, you'll want to be obtaining buffs that come as close as possible to 100% uptime; a case in which the duration of the skill matches or exceeds its cooldown. This tricks the system into transforming some of your active skill slots into additional passive skill slots. It is in this way that you can maintain a stronger state for your hero.
Magic Weapon is a second Glass Cannon with no downside.
The other element of skill uptime to be aware of is the potential for some attack skills to be performed parallel to your other actions. This circumvents the fact that you can only use one skill at a time and allows these types of skills to be used in conjunction with your primary attacks. An exact example of this skill style is one that creates an AI-controlled helper-minion. After the initial time spent using the skill, it can be viewed as a free and automated source of damage that requires no further input from you.
The purpose of a skill (offense, defense, or utility) fundamentally defines its applicable game mode, but that's already been covered. The actual intent of this segment is to assist you with easily identifying the best of the best. This is possible because there exist skills that serve more than one purpose. These skills are almost twice, sometimes thrice as powerful as they first appear to be.
It's not terribly difficult to identify a skill that, when runed, becomes multipurpose (offense + something). The real jackpot is finding the select few that are already multipurpose by default and thus can only become even more omnipotent when a rune is applied.
Revenge is both offensive and defensive by design.
Conclusively, the more problems a skill can solve, the more versatile it is. The more versatile it is, the more you will be using it (which directly relates to the importance of the skill's uptime). Skills that have a wide array of usage are innately better than skills that are too narrow in their use (situational). As a final note, situational skills are not to be confused with conditional skills. The former describes when you would want to use the skill with the latter being when you are allowed to use the skill.
Single Target vs Area Effect
To reiterate, Diablo III's standard gameplay focuses more on the quantity over the quality of slain enemies, favoring area effect attacks. Single target attacks are not entirely ruled out, but because of their situational nature they will not be the focus of the following details. Thankfully Diablo III's skill system supports the ability to hotswap skills in and out as needed!
The numbers game is touched on in the next section, but it unavoidably begins here. When you're directly comparing the killing power of two area effect skills, you'll need to estimate the total net damage of each skill. To do that, you can multiply the skill's weapon damage by the number of targets it hits on average to approximate an overall damage value.
Electrocute consistently deals 240% weapon damage.
We'll end the math there, but in terms of skill evaluation, it's not entirely that simple. Some skills are less reliable than others when it comes to hitting targets. Ultimately it comes down to personal preference and practice so you'll need to try out various skills to get a feel for them.
You're always going to want the most out of your attacks, and part of that includes effecting as many targets as possible. After all, your class's resources are a very valuable asset...
Cost vs Effectiveness
Finally we arrive at the last chapter in our road to enlightenment. This subject matter is all about the numbers of the skill. How much damage does it deal and how much of a resource does it cost? The raw power of a skill ends up being the most volatile portion of its evaluation due to the fact that, through game updates, the numbers of each skill will constantly be in flux in order to achieve global game balance. It is much easier for Diablo III's developers to re-tune a skill than to redesign it entirely which is the reason why this section is the last thing to consider about a skill.
For a time, most Wizards chose Arcane Orb because it was exceedingly efficient.
However, that's not to say that the numbers don't matter because they do ultimately determine if you should be using the skill at the present time or not. Skills that are well-designed allow you to keep an eye on them for the future, but the current power level of a skill will always end up making the choice for you in the end. To determine the efficiency of a skill, you must compare its cost and damage output to each other skill of similar style (that's to say, try not to compare a summoning skill with a channeled skill). There's not much more to it. It's simply a question of: "How much bang am I getting for my buck?"
In closing, I sincerely hope you take something away from this article. These theories are the driving force behind the decisions I currently make on the official skill calculator. Only time will tell whether or not these ideas can withstand the ferocity of Inferno difficulty. See you in Sanctuary!
Sep 23, 2011Okay so I am going to try and write this all down in an orderly fashion. I have well over 40 hours of gameplay as well as watching my girlfriend play(who knows nothing about pc games/diablo).Posted in: Diablo III General Discussion
To me the combat feels true to the Diablo series, I click all over the place and it feels good. They overhaul on the system was a good thing from what I can tell so far. Having an open skill system is nice and allows me to try out a bunch of new skills without worrying about making a new character but I feel its a little to forgiving. I think if they added a 1 minute cooldown on the skill you just switched out it would stop people from changing things in the middle of a battle and actually think about what they are doing before they change skills.
Overall combat is smooth and extremely fun. Having a mouse like the Razer Naga also helps because i can do all my skills right from the mouse instead of using the keyboard.
Another thing I want to say about the combat is that my girlfriend, who i mentioned above, could pick up the game and play it with only a little help from me all the way to a level 12 demon hunter without dying once. They have made combat easy enough for the casual gamer to understand but deep enough for hardcore gamers to get enjoyment out of it!
Crafting is pretty straightforward, you break down items and build up your blacksmith and craft the items you want. The interface is easy to work through and its fun building up your blacksmith. I was very into using the BS until the gold Auction House hit.
The sound in Diablo 3 is AMAZING. For everyone who is hating on the sound in Diablo 3 just wait until you actually play. Turn down your effects volume to about 30 percent and leave the music and stuff maxed. This allows you to hear every creak and crackle and the music actually comes out more which makes you get immersed more into your game!
If you have a headset I suggest using it! if not I would suggest buying one!
The Game World
Okay so one of my main gripes so far is that most of the beta is planned out, you don't get much randomization unless you are in a dungeon and I am hoping that the outdoor areas end up being super random.
The world is alive, you will notice a lot of little things when you actually play like rats scurrying across a field or a building crumbling as you walk past. They have put the time to make you feel like you are a part of this world and it shows.
The art style, which has had much controversy is actually one of my favorite aspects of this game. The trees and ground feel like a painting and the more cartoony feel I think actually helps the gameplay. If we didnt have this art style classes like the witch doctor wouldnt work because how off the wall he is.
After playing the beta I am going to have to say that the witch doctor will be my first class i will be doing a full playthrough on. He is just so off the wall that i cant stop playing him.
I was most suprised by the monk. I love the fact that the monk is all about speed and getting in and out while doing your crazy combos. The combo system works well and mixing and matching your steps 1,2,3 are fun to do.
Even with all the complaints I think demon hunter will be my second class to do a full playthrough. I love the style and the skills and it brings me back to playing 2 of my favorite classes from D2, the assassin and amazon.
The wizard is a lot of fun. The skills look great and function even better. Its great having a full party of wizards just destroying everything. I like the style of the male wizard better than the female. He is arrogant and I like that in the characters I play.
I actually really enjoyed the barb. He was my least favorite class in D2 but with the new systems they have in place for him he was a joy to play. When you kill something and their body goes flying at your camera its a very satisfying feeling.
Overall there is no class I didn't enjoy. Some had their perks to my play-style but from everything I have seen so far there will be no wrong choice of a class to play!
The game is a blast and it shows as people continue to do runs to get better gear on their level 13 characters. I cant wait for full release and plan on forking over the money for a collectors edition(if there is one).
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