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Diablo 3 Seasons: Endings, Beginnings, and Scheduling
Almost everyone on my friends list and in the IncGamers HC West clan is playing Seasons now, so conversation has been focused on that reality. How long will Season One last? Are Seasons going to run a consistent amount of time? How much warning will we get before one ends and the next one begins? […]
Diablo 3 Podcast #152: Realm of Trials & Grifts Improvements
This show covers numerous changes made in Patch 2.1.1, then focuses intently on fixes and changes needed for the Realm of Trials and Greater Rifts. Why not more player control in selecting the level, competitive PvPvE Grifting, running lower Grifts for Leaderboard record times, etc. Featuring Rankil, N3rdwards, and Flux. Click through for approximate segment […]
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IncGamers Diablo 3 Hardcore Clan Merger


Posted 2 Oct 2014 by at 01:22 GMT

incgamers diablo 3 clan and communityWe’ve long had three Hardcore clans on the Americas Server: IncGamers Hardcore West/East/North, running IncHCW, IncHCE, and IncHCN for tags. All the clans are nearly-full, but a lot of those numbers are players who have gone inactive, so to get a larger group of active players we are merging the East and West clans into “IncGamers Hardcore” clan. Our “IncGamers HC North” clan is *not* merging or closing or changing at this time, since it’s lately the busiest of the three (no doubt due to Xanth’s intrepid leadership). (Plus it’s cool to have a normal and a North version, as Blizzard once proved.)

Unfortunately, Battle.net offers zero tools for Diablo 3 clan management, so the only way to do this is for members to manually leave the East and West clans, search for “IncGamers Hardcore” and request to join. (You can’t search on clans while you’re in one.) All current members are welcome in the new clan, and we may open up to general recruiting after the merging time, if space permits. (Bnet has a 150 max member cap in D3 clans.)

This process is live right now, and we’ve had news posts in the clans for the past week giving warning of the October 1st deadline. But since there are 50+ people still in East and West who haven’t merged, here’s a reminder. If you’re one of those people and you haven’t logged on for a while, this is your final notice. We’ll be shutting down both the East and West Hardcore clans late night tonight, which means all members who have not already moved to the new clan will find themselves clanless when they next log on.

If that’s you, or you’re just looking for a good Hardcore clan with active, helpful players, look us up. On the Americas server, it’s IncGamers Hardcore . We are *not* accepting new recruits while the merger is ongoing, but we should have space to add some more Hardcore players by this weekend. Or you could choose to join our “IncGamers HC North” Clan, which is recruiting right now. We’ve also got an “IncGamers Hardcore” clan on Europe, which is once again recruiting after we booted 30 inactives earlier this week to open up some space.

Clans are useful in Diablo 3, but especially so in Hardcore, where death happens and it’s good to play with people you know, people who know what they’re doing, and people who can help you out with a power level or other assistance after the inevitable doom befalls your hero. Many of the regular site contributors are in our Hardcore clans, including me, Xanth, ZappaFan, Wolfpaq, Aahzmandius, Nizaris, and others I’m currently forgetting, so you can see our characters alive and kicking, before something bad happens to fuel a podcast rant.

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Diablo 3 Podcast #152: Realm of Trials & Grifts Improvements


Posted 1 Oct 2014 by at 15:00 GMT

This show covers numerous changes made in Patch 2.1.1, then focuses intently on fixes and changes needed for the Realm of Trials and Greater Rifts. Why not more player control in selecting the level, competitive PvPvE Grifting, running lower Grifts for Leaderboard record times, etc. Featuring Rankil, N3rdwards, and Flux.

Click through for approximate segment starting times:

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Diablo 3 Controls Problems and Console Issues


Posted 1 Oct 2014 by at 14:18 GMT

A few useful Blue posts on various topics. First up, let’s talk about the controls.

Sometimes I want to move my character to a location where there are a lot of mobs, but if I click there, I just cast the ranged attack. Is there some method of moving into the middle of a crowd?
Grimiku: Good question, and there’s definitely a way of doing this. Personally, I found setting up a Force Move key very helpful, and highly recommend doing so. All you need to do is hit the Esc key while in game, and go to Options > Key Binding. Then find the Force Move function under the Gameplay section, and assign it to whatever key you’d like that isn’t being used for anything else.

That’s a valid option, but here’s a better fix. Make it possible to bind “force move” to the left click full time, with that LMB skill free to map to the RMB, or to a fifth keyboard hotkey. I would love that control scheme and have been advocating it since well before the game’s release, and more recently in dev interviews and in a detailed article from 2013. You can even hear it verbally ranted, as I brought it up on the new since the limited LMB skills issue was at least partially to blame for the death of my last HSea Monk.

Having to use a skill on the left mouse button, instead of just having a default attack/movement key there, means endless Diablo 1 style clicking, which means missing moving targets in explosion-filled battles, accidentally picking up junk on the ground, and a great deal of inefficiency. All melee skills in Diablo 3 work much better on the right click than on the left click, since you can just hold the RMB down and move around that way, auto-targeting anything you hover on. That doesn’t work with the left click, which requires you to actually click on each target, and since the game doesn’t allow proper keyboard customization, players are forced to use a skill on the left click.

Console control UI.

The Console’s superior control UI.

This was annoying in D3v and it’s even dumber now, since with so much more gear variety now, lots of builds no longer employ a simple Primary resource generator for the left click. But since many skills can not be mapped to the LMB, or don’t work very well when mapped there, players are gimped by the game’s inflexible controls at just the time the improvements to skills and gear are trying to set them free.

And it’s ironic that the console and UUE have *better* controls in this way than the PC, since there the thumbpad is used to move freely, much like the Force Move, with the actual skills mapped to six different buttons.

[/rant]

Click through for a couple of other good Blue posts about PC game joining bugs and an Ultimate Evil Console issue.

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Big Diablo 3 News Coming At Blizzcon 2014?


Posted 1 Oct 2014 by at 13:18 GMT

Despite the multitude of new changes in recent patches, some fans are already growing restless and requesting more new content, and/or some official “State of the Game” type address from the developers. Nothing of the sort seems likely, at least not until a big convention in November. Big Diablo 3 News Coming At Blizzcon 2014?

Do you got plans in the future ? Any changes ? Can we got some information about Season 2, what will be in it? What about S1 exploits ? When will the beta season will end? (Aka. Season 1) State of GRift ? Class balance ? Build diversity ?
Vaneras: I don’t have much I can say on this topic right now, buy I just wanted to jump into this thread to assure everyone that we are reading your feedback as well as taking note of your concerns.

don’t forget Blizzcon is in a month so probably we won’t hear any big news until then
The developers have seen the requests for a ‘state of the game’ update, and they are not against that idea. BlizzCon is indeed on the approach, and while I currently don’t have information on the kind of news that may be shared before or during the event, I do hope that people will find BlizzCon interesting.

I am bracing myself for disappointment, but what are our odds on getting a type of “state of d3″ post with ur thoughts?
Good idea … Let me talk about it with people back at Blizz… Blizzcon is coming up. –Josh Mosq ‏@joshmosq

Seems pretty unlikely Josh Mosqueira would say “Blizzcon is coming up” if they weren’t planning on giving us some big infos at the show. Doesn’t mean we’ll get the second expansion reveal, but it seems safe to bet on something bigger than “more of the same.”

Do you guys expect big news from Blizzcon? And/or do you even think we need it? Greater Rifts and the associated game content was all added in patches fairly recently, and considering that Diablo 3 is free to play, without a monthly fee or even any micro-transactions, we’ve gotten an amazing amount of high quality content added in patches. I’m not saying I expect a cash item shoppe or something, but neither do I expect an endless parade of big content patches. The game will likely stabilize at some point, with the next big thing coming in a not-free expansion pack.

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Jay Wilson is now a World of Warcraft designer


Posted 30 Sep 2014 by at 15:36 GMT

jay wilson in taiwan

Whatever happened to Jay? After his departure from Diablo 3 Jay moved on to work on the now cancelled Project Titan sci-fi MMO. With that now canned, Jay has since moved on to World of Warcraft as a designer which is revealed in a list of credits for the upcoming expansion Warlords of Draenor.

Jay has worked on WoW before as part of the Strike team for Mists of Pandaria so WoW is not new to Jay.

If you’re new to Diablo 3, Jay Wilson  was the original Game Director who resigned his position after backlash from the community about the game’s design and direction. He also admitted that that the auction house actually “hurt the game”  during his GDC panel which was a real insight into his time working on the game.

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Veiled Crystals Hotfix coming soon


Posted 30 Sep 2014 by at 14:28 GMT

One is unlike the others...

One is unlike the others…

Mentioned in the upcoming Hotfixes is a big buff to the drop rate of the yellow salvage material, Veiled Crystals.

[UPCOMING HOTFIXES]

The number of Rare crafting materials that will drop from monsters (including Rift Guardians) will be greatly increased

This has been an issue since the big change to gambling in Patch 2.1.1 greatly reduced the yellow Veiled Crystals materials salvaged from failed gambling efforts. (The change dropped yellow mats recovered from 500 Blood Shards worth of gambled armor items from something like 85 to 15.) The shortage was irrelevant to some players who weren’t doing much enchanting or crafting, but it was crippling to many (especially in Hardcore) who were working hard on gear upgrading.

Crafting Legendary and Set items costs a lot of yellows, and enchanting does as well, making it very easy to spend hundreds of yellow mats in just a minute of repeatedly trying to roll a desired stat. The prices are completely insane, also. Not just high, but wildly inconsistent. Enchanting Level 70 legendary items costs 3 Veiled Crystals for most armor slots (belt, boots, shoulders, bracers, helms), but 50 for chest armor and 40 for pants. Rings/Amulets cost 11, and Weapons cost 16. For Crafting, you’ll pay 90 Veiled Crystals to make for Gloves/Helms, 45 for boots, and 7 for pants/chests/bracers/helms. If someone can make any sense of those prices, feel free to explain it to the rest of us.

You know mats are scarce when this starts looking good to you.

You know mats are scarce when this starts looking good to you.


Before the hotfix news, I was going to post a discussion article with a vote asking how you guys thought Blizzard should address the issue. I’m still interested in discussion, but with the news of mat drops being buffed, there doesn’t seem much point in a vote/survey now. At any rate, the options would have been something like:

What should be done about the Veiled Crystal yellow material shortage?

  • 1) Reduce and rebalance crafting/enchanting costs for Veiled Crystals.
  • 2) Drop more Veiled Crystals from chests/monsters.
  • 3) Return more VCs from salvaging Rares (1-2 or 1-3?)
  • 4) Greatly buff VC drops from Rift Guardians.
  • 5) Some or all of the above.
  • 6) No change needed. Veiled Crystals are abundant now.
  • How shortage’d out were some players? I saw suggestions to craft Sovereign Rings with the jeweler, simply to salvage them for the material. That’s 10k + 2 Marquise Diamonds, simply for a Veiled Crystal! Hopefully the buff to yellow mat drop rates will save players from that sort of desperate creativity

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    Tagged As: | Categories: Blue Posts, Crafting, Economy, Enchanting | 15 Comments

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    Latest Diablo 3 Hotfix brings more Blood Shards – 30 September


    Posted 30 Sep 2014 by at 00:24 GMT

    reaper of souls hotfixes

    The latest round of hotfixes have hit the servers and these includes more Greater Rift Blood Shards. Soon to be added are increased drop rates for crafting mats.

    [UPCOMING HOTFIXES]
    Items

    • The number of Rare crafting materials that will drop from monsters (including Rift Guardians) will be greatly increased

    [LIVE HOTFIXES]

    Greater Rifts

    • Players will now receive more Blood Shards when completing Greater Rifts (9/26)
      • For example, at Tier 15, you will receive 58 Blood Shards (up from 45) and at Tier 25, you will receive 115 Blood Shards (up from 83)

     

    • The Greater Rift keystone reward from completing the Realm of Trials in multiplayer games has been increased (9/26)
      • 2 Player groups will receive a key equal to their last wave completed minus four
        • Ex. If you completed wave 20, your group will receive a level 16 keystone
      • 3 Player groups will receive a key equal to their last wave completed minus five
        • Ex. If you completed wave 20, your group will receive a level 15 keystone
      • 4 Player groups will receive a key equal to their last wave completed minus six
        • Ex. If you completed wave 20, your group will receive a level 14 keystone

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    Tagged As: | Categories: Blue Posts, Diablo 3 Patches | 9 Comments

    Latest Diablo 3 News

    Patch 2.1.1 Undocumented Changes Master List


    Posted 28 Sep 2014 by at 00:26 GMT

    Patch 2.1.1 documented a lot of changes, but small stuff sneaked through as well. I’ve seen forum threads on B.net, Reddit, and in our Diablo 3 community forum, and there’s been a lot of talk of these things in clan chat as well. Here’s a compiled list, with some explanation as needed.

    Treasure Goblins

    Resting animation with portal.

    Resting animation with portal.

    Treasure Goblins show a portal open in their resting animation when you first sight them. They also open a portal every time they die, which closes (unless you get lucky with DiabloWikiGreed’s Domain) when you move near to pick up the loot. (You see this every time playing a ranged class, and almost never with a melee char.) More details and screens of this in our Patch 2.1.1 playtest article.

    Some fans have also claimed that goblins have a new “streaking” animation when they run, or that Rainbow goblins will sometimes spawn a shrine/pylon when they die, I haven’t seen either, and most players think they’re untrue.

    One other goblin oddity I have seen and confirmed. Snitchley, the giant Treasure Goblin you sometimes get as a bounty in the Arreat Crater, has new graphics. He looks like the Silver Surfer now, all gleaming and metallic. I’m not sure this is new in Patch 2.1.1, since I hadn’t seen him in a while, but I’ve seen him twice in Patch 2.1.1 and the graphics I just happened upon him one game and was surprised by the reskin, so I sought him out again yesterday and took the time to eyeball him before the kill, and he’s definitely gleaming and silvery now. I have no idea if he has a chance to open up a portal to Greed’s Domain — probably not since as a bounty target I don’t think he can portal out — but it would be interesting to find out.

    Sentries Buffed

    Sentries, the Demon Hunter attack “pets,” can now be cast on the other side of Waller walls, and through most types of closed doorways. Because the most OP build in the game needed a buff?

    Seriously though, I’ve been running M6 this week on my DH and it’s super effective, and since I’m new to the gear/build I’ve been experimenting with a lot of different skill combinations. From what I’ve seen of other M6 DHs, Multishot is probably the most used skill, but I wonder if that may change thanks to this Patch fix? True, MS is great for large groups and Sentries are dumb so you don’t want them trying to target things precisely… but MS is also useful since it shoots through walls and over Wallers, while skills like Elemental Arrow and Elemental Arrow do not. But now that Sentries can be cast right by targets on the other side of obstacles, MS might seem less necessary?

    Tooltips and Icons

    key-of-bones-patch211New mini-circle icons show beside item sockets which have been added via enchanting.

    There are also more detailed tool tips on the four Keys, showing which Keywarden dropped them. Which is helpful if you’re like me and always forget which comes from where. There are also more detailed tutorials for each Keywarden in the game start up screen, naming the area in which each is found, though I don’t believe that’s a brand new addition. And it’s not undocumented, but all 4 Keys are now group drops, so everyone in the game will get them, or no one will.

    Seasonal tooltips and achievements and characters in the clan roster now show the little Seasons green leaf icon beside them. Unfortunately, this still doesn’t show on characters in your Friends list or on the Battle.net armory, so if you click a link from the Leaderboard Rankings it can be hard to tell which of the characters on an account is the one tied to the Greater Rift record in question.

    The “Monster Slaying” tag on game creation has been changed to “Bounties.” The match making function is the same, though.

    Realm of Trials

    The “beam of disappointment” is now just a “clang of disappointment” as article’d here.

    The GR level key rewards have been tweaked, and while not listed in the patch they were documented in a hotfix:

    The Greater Rift keystone reward from completing the Realm of Trials in multiplayer games will be increased:
    Two Player groups will receive a key equal to their last wave completed minus four.

  • Ex. If you completed 20 waves, your group will receive a level 16 keystone
  • Three Player groups will receive a key equal to their last wave completed minus five.

  • Ex. If you completed 20 waves, your group will receive a level 15 keystone
  • Four Player groups will receive a key equal to their last weave completed minus six.

  • Ex. If you completed 20 waves, your group will receive a level 14 keystone
  • There are also a lot of tweaks to the type of monsters you get during the waves in the Realm of Trials, which we discussed in a previous article. Also, the changes to the Realm of Trials will be a major topic in the next podcast, so expect that on Monday or Tuesday morning.

    Items

    Haedrig’s “salvage all” buttons will not clean out Account Bound items. Blue and Yellow items from DiabloWikiHoradric Caches are automatically account bound, which most people didn’t notice until this patch made this bug/change.

    Healing potions now stack to 1000. Which means you can wait 10x as long before you have to sell off your big stack once the second stack you can’t help but pick up starts growing beside it.

    The legendary two-handed sword Stalgard’s Decimator received a damage buff to the legendary affix, raising it from (550-650%) to (550-700%). The stats on existing items were not changed, so find a new one if you want the highest roll possible.


    That’s our documented list of undocumented changes. Anything else you guys have noticed that should be included? Obviously there are bigger changes, like the buffs to WD pets, the changes to the gambling rate/cost, etc… and those are game for conversation as well, documented though they were.

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    Legendary Gem Questions and Bugs


    Posted 27 Sep 2014 by at 20:17 GMT

    A couple of questions about DiabloWikiLegendary Gem effects were answered by Blue posters today. First up, a question about the increased damage to knocked back targets provided by the Legendary Strongarm Bracers, and the similar bonus from the DiabloWikiBane of the Trapped LGem. Let’s have some Legendary Gem Questions and Bugs:

    Is it just me or do these not stack? it appears to me that they do not, I am currently testing but it so far looks like my damage is the same with one or the other, but with both it is also the same. if thats the case i am wasting a gem or bracer slot.
    Grimiku: Bane of the Trapped and DiabloWikiStrongarm Bracers will stack their bonus damage together, but they do have separate effects that trigger those buffs.

    While running with DiabloWikiBane of the Powerful legendary gem equipped, I noticed some inconsistencies. I’m not sure whether these are intended or not.
    Grimik: The damage bonus that’s applied by slaying Elite monsters with Bane of the Powerful functions differently depending on the Elite(s). In situations where there is a single Elite (like a DiabloWikiTreasure Goblin or Act boss) then it’s pretty straight forward in the sense that once you kill that Elite you get the buff. When the Elites are in some form of a pack, though, it gets slightly more complicated. The entire pack will need to be slain in order to trigger the buff. That includes every member of a Champion pack, or all of the minions along with their Elite master.

    That said, there’s currently a bug that allows Bane of the Powerful to apply its bonus damage after killing illusions, which is not intended. We’ll be sure to let everyone know through the appropriate channel once that fix is implemented, so be sure to keep an eye out for it.

    There are a lot of inconsistencies with Legendary Gems, in terms of what procs trigger what other procs, which of the LGem properties work with each other, with various class skills, with the hundreds of item legendary properties, etc. We’re working on compiling master lists, but it’s an ever-growing project, as things keep getting tweaked in patches. Any of you guys have questions or oddities about LGems on your mind? Properties or procs that should combine, but do not?

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    Tagged As: | Categories: Blue Posts, Diablo III Bugs, Legendary Gems | 6 Comments

    Latest Diablo 3 News

    Imperial Gems for Legendary Jewelry Enchanting: Too Cheap?


    Posted 26 Sep 2014 by at 22:32 GMT

    Imperials are stacking up already.

    I, for one, welcome our new Imperial Overloads.


    Fans long complained that it was too expensive to enchant Legendary Jewelry with Flawless Imperial gems, especially since more than a random distribution of those items seemed to require Topaz. Now that the cost has been cut to 33% of that, with Flawless Imperial changed to Imperial, fans still have complaints: Imperial Gems for Legendary Jewelry Enchanting: Too Cheap?

    The game is easy enough with the crazy legandery items frequency drop, please change it back.. imperial gems to change jewelry is too ridiculous.
    Vaneras: The change was done as a precursor to future changes that are still in the works. We’re planning to introduce more uses for any gem you have excess of, as well as a way to increase your ability to get specific gems that you are lacking. Since those future changes are further down the road however, we temporarily changed the cost to enchant jewelry in order to make it a little less punishing to add a socket to your rings or amulets.

    Travis Day recently promised coming changes to make it easier to find or create the type of gems that you want, though we don’t have details yet: see that post here. And as the Blue says in this post today, it’s a “temporary” change. The reagent might go back up to a Flawless Imperial at some point, once they’ve implemented a way to transform other types of gems into the type your ring/amulet requires?

    This sort of issue is funny, since people have that attitude. “If it requires more than I have it’s too expensive and it if requires less than I have it’s too cheap.”

    Personally, I think it’s just right, leaning toward too cheap. The screen above is my current stash, where Imperial Gems are starting to rather stack up, as I pick up all the gems I find and upgrade the Marquise to Imperial for storage. This is on my HSea account, and I’ve had a Monk and a DH die this season, both taking multiple gems with them, which is why I’m so much lower on Emeralds than the others. What I’ve got now feels like a surplus (just give me more emeralds!), but if the price changed back to Flawless Imperial tomorrow, I’d change my tune when 42 Imperial Topaz turned into 14 Flawless Imperial, since it’s quite easy to spend that many (or more) trying to add a socket to just a single ring/amulet.

    What do you guys think of the current jewelry enchanting cost? Too cheap, too expensive, just right… or pointless to argue since this is just the temporary cost and we have no idea how it’ll change in the coming weeks/months?

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    Tagged As: | Categories: Blue Posts, Crafting, Enchanting | 17 Comments

    Latest Diablo 3 News

    Diablo 3 Legendary “Clang of Disappointment”


    Posted 26 Sep 2014 by at 14:43 GMT

    Trial Key clang, but no beam.

    Trial Key clang, but no beam.

    A couple of weeks ago Travis Day barnstormed a forum thread to agree that the full legendary beam showing for every Realm of Trials key drop was excessive, and said he would remove the “Beam of Disappointment” from DiabloWikiKeystone of Trials drops in a future patch. The patch hit earlier this week which means the future is now, and indeed, the beam is gone from Keys when dropped by Rift Guardians.

    Unfortunately, the sound effect remains, which everyone in our clan chat immediately began referring to as the, “clang of disappointment.” The star still shows on the map also, but I don’t think anyone minds that. The clang though… removing the beam and not the clang sound is almost worse, since I’d learned to ignore the sight, but the sound still makes me twitch like one of Pavlov’s dogs.

    Does everyone agree that the Diablo 3 Legendary “Clang of Disappointment” needs to be removed from Trial Keys? Or would you like the beam to come back as well, just so you’d see something shining and clanging even when no legendary or set items came up on that spin of the slot machine wheel?

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    Realm of Trials Patch Changes Spark Controversy


    Posted 26 Sep 2014 by at 03:29 GMT

    Only the greatest can achieve such.

    Only the greatest can achieve such.

    This week’s patch made some changes to the composition and style of the enemies players face during the DiabloWikiRealm of Trials in the process of earning a Greater Rift key. Some players like the changes, others do not, and today Blizzard offered an explanation. Realm of Trials Patch Changes Spark Controversy:

    The adjustments to the Realm of Trials in Patch 2.1.1 had a few goals. First, we wanted to more consistently test your survivability. High damaging creatures weren’t always spawning in each pack, which means your Toughness wasn’t always being properly evaluated. Second, we wanted the Trials to feel less punishing for melee characters. And third, we wanted to mirror the monster variety you’d experience in a Greater Rift as best as possible. While the experience won’t be identical, it should be reasonably close.

    The changes to address these issues are as follows:

  • We’ve adjusted how monsters will spawn during a trial. As part of this adjustment, we recategorized monsters into different “pools.” In the case of the Realm of Trials, a “pool” is a set of potential monster spawns that all have a specific theme. Different pools now include low hit point creatures that die quickly, slightly meatier “mid-ranged” enemies, tanky damage-soakers, and more consistent damage-dealers.)
  • With this, we ensured that least one monster type from each “pool” spawns dependably.
  • Monsters that run or kite frequently were removed from the spawn pools to improve the experience for melee players. To a lesser extent, this also lowers the need for players to have a “vortex” ability.
  • Finally, we realized that the reduction in keystone tier for multiplayer groups was too harsh. As mentioned above, it’s intended that you receive a keystone lower than your theoretical maximum. The increased reduction for player groups helps counterbalance the higher capabilities of a group, especially when considering class diversity and buff sharing. We overshot that counterbalance initially, but this will be adjusted with an upcoming hotfix.

    On this week’s podcast Monstrous talked extensively about the biggest problem with the Realm of Trials (before the patch). Namely that many classes/builds (especially melee) couldn’t finish the Waves quickly enough and thus got much lower level keys than they wanted. Thus a melee character whose actual max DiabloWikiGreater Rift was around GR38 could only earn a GR30~ key from the Realm of Trials, and then needed to spend an hour or two clearing Greater Rifts, progressing gradually upward 1 or 2 levels at a time, to finally reach the 37-39GR range they wanted to start off at. (And that assumes they didn’t get one bad spawn Grift on the way up and fail to finish in time.)

    This was a problem since some classes/builds (notably DiabloWikiM6 Demon Hunters) who were exceptional at the style of waves combat seen in the Realm of Trails, and thus could earn GR40+ keys right from the start, giving them a much faster method to play the higher level Grifts, even if they weren’t actually better/faster at clearing those Grift levels. As a result it’s become common for players to party up with as many DHs as possible just to earn higher level keys via the Realm of Trials.

    Blizzard’s solution, at least with the current Patch changes, is to make the Realm of Trials harder, especially for ranged characters, thus lowering the highest possible keys anyone can get a hold off. Which is enforcing equality of a sort, but opens up a new problem for players at the highest level of competition.

    Now, barring much better equipment being patched into the game, it’s going to be almost impossible for anyone to challenge the current highest GR records. Not because the game is harder, but because all the current top GR times (in softcore, at least) were set by players who abused the old Realm of Trials system to rack up a bunch of 45-50 keys, which they could then attempt over and over again, until they got a Greater Rift with a great monster spawn, found a couple of Conduit Shrines, etc. And that was possible to do trying the same Grift level repeatedly, but is not possible to get several times in a row while working your way up, say GR 38, 39, 40, 41, while chasing the current WD leaderboard.

    This is obviously a problem that only affects a small number of players who have a lot of free time for gaming, and even for them it will be fixed by starting in the next season, whenever the next season stats. It’ll also change as Grift times improve inexorably, as new/better Legendary items are added in patches, as better techniques are discovered, etc, which makes me think it’s not a big deal. But if you’re one of those players challenging for the fastest Grift, it’s probably a big deal to you.

    Those guys, and everyone else as well… what do you think of the Wave of Trials changes? And does anyone support a Grift leaderboard wipe, based on the new style of Trial?

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    Diablo 3 Gambling Estimated Price Spreadsheet: Patch 2.1.1. Updated


    Posted 25 Sep 2014 by at 14:55 GMT

    A statistically-inclined anonymous fan put together a super-useful spreadsheet that shows every legendary and set item in the game and estimates how many Blood Shards each class will have to spend to obtain it. The figures are all updated for Patch 2.1.1’s improved legendary gambling odds, and they seem accurate.

    There’s no magic in the calculations. Just take the 10% legendary gamble rate that Travis Day revealed, then multiple that by the Blood Shard price of each item type, and figure out each item’s price by using the weighting in the Diablo 3 legendary item drop tables.

    As we’ve said several times, legendary items in Diablo 3 are almost all sorted into four tiers of frequency for drops via smart drop or gambling. They are: common (1/1), uncommon (1/2), rare (1/4), and ultra-rare (1/10) frequency. For instance, since 1/10 of glove gambles yield a legendary or set glove, you just need to figure 1 glove per 500 shards, and then multiply that by the odds of each particular glove for each class. Since everyone always asks about Tasker and Theo, here are those figures. TnT and Frostburn share the 1/10 frequency ultra-rare category, but since gloves aren’t that expensive to gamble and there aren’t that many of them in total, a DH (or Wizard) or can reasonably expect to gamble a TnT within the first 11750 Shards spent on gloves, while it’ll take a WD (or Monk) around 14250. Barbs and Crusaders have longer odds since they have more possible legendary gloves, but neither of the STR classes really wants a TnT anyway. (Beats the 36,000 that guy spent last week, though his luck was below average.)

    There are worse odds than that, of course. While all types of armor are pretty easy to get, most types of weapons are much harder. This is especially true for melee weapons since the game (still) doesn’t let you gamble just for swords, or maces, or axes, etc. By holding to a one-handed or two-handed option, all the melee weapons are essentially put into the same huge item pool, which drastically lowers your chances of fishing any particular item out.

    The most common gambling complaint I see from players who say DiabloWikiRimeheart is almost impossible to gamble. They’re right. The estimates prices bear that out, with a vigorous 250-307k Shards estimated for a good chance at a RimeHeart, and up around 500,000 to raise your odds to pretty good. Hey, that’s only 5000 T6 Rift runs… what are you waiting for?

    Gambling estimate prices, 1H swords, Patch 2.1.1.

    Gambling estimate prices, 1H swords, Patch 2.1.1.

    The highest estimated prices are for Amulets, since there are so many of them, and they cost so much to gamble. Thus the highest price in the entire game is DiabloWikiThe Star of Azkaranth, which is also the only item in the game with a frequency set to worse than the 1/10 ultra-rare. Thus the Star of Azkaranth will cost you an estimated 621,000 Blood Shards, with up around 1,000,000 Shards likely required to have pretty good odds of finding one.

    Bear in mind that all of the figures are just estimates. You might gamble your dream item on your first try, or never at all. That’s what we all love so much about RNG! For instance, my DH has been gambling chest armors on and off for the last couple of weeks without any luck getting a Marauders. Tonight I thought I’d try some quivers for a change, mostly hoping for an Eminem’s Duffle, since I’ve been experimenting with a Bola Shot build. I didn’t get one, possibly since I stopped after three gambles when I popped the Sentry-spawning Bombadier’s Rucksack, which is 1) the most sought after Quiver, and 2) the only one with the uncommon 1/2 drop rate. I spent 75 Shards to get it, while the estimated prices are 4250/6238.

    So yeah, it’s all RNG in the end, but this Blood Shard gambling cost list is a useful reference guide, especially for players who don’t know the legendary items well enough to have general sense of just how uncommon they are, relatively speaking.

    I’m curious what strategy players will go with; I’ve been gambling for stuff that has a good chance to roll (armor, mainly) since I want faster upgrades for my new HSea characters. That might be your strategy, or you might be looking long term. If that’s you, and you’re after one particular weapon, you should start gambling for it immediately and trust to monster drops to find your armor.

  • Diablo 3 Gambling Estimated Price Spreadsheet
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    Tagged As: | Categories: *Big News, gambling, Item Sets, Legendary Gems | 27 Comments

    Latest Diablo 3 News

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    New Diablo 3 Transmog with 2014 Blizzcon Virtual Ticket


    Posted 25 Sep 2014 by at 13:25 GMT

    Blizzcon 2014 is coming up in just six weeks, and if you’re not lucky enough to be attending (I’ll be there, along with some others representing IncGamers), you can still be part of the action by purchasing the Blizzcon Virtual Ticket. It’s a subscription that allows you to watch (online or via Direct TV) all the panels live, plus exclusive interviews and other content that even show attendees don’t get to see, and Blizzard would very much like you to buy one, instead of just waiting to see the panels later on YouTube.

    One thing you definitely won’t get on YouTube is the Blizzcon virtual goodie bag, the contents of which Blizzard has just posted a preview of. All show attendees receive a non-virtual Goodie Bag, which comes with a variety of Blizzard merch and lots of coupons and brochures, along with some virtual game prizes as well. If you purchase the Virtual Ticket you don’t get the non-virtual loot, but you do receive access codes to unlock all the digital goodies in the full goodie bag, which includes a WoW virtual pet, a Heartstone card, some Starcraft decals, a Titan-scented bag of invisible potpourri, and more. Diablo 3 is also virtually-represented, with new transmog recipes.

    New Diablo 3 Transmog with 2014 Blizzcon Virtual Ticket:

    Diablo III – Warlords of Draenor Weapon Transmogrifications

    Outfit your heroes with six weapon transmogrification appearances inspired by World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor—one for each of Diablo III: Reaper of Souls’ classes.

    You can see the two sample images below, with the Draenor influence best seen in that Barb BBQ cooker mace. The hot hands bow for the Demon Hunter is another nice example, but the rest of the classes seem to have a lot less love. Why not hibachis on a stick for everyone? Also, check out the DH’s stems above those galoshes… Holy skinny jeans, Batman!

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    Tagged As: | Categories: BlizzCon 2014, Blue Posts, Merchandise | 5 Comments

    Latest Diablo 3 News

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    IncGamers Steam Curator List and other PC gaming updates


    Posted 25 Sep 2014 by at 05:26 GMT

    IncGamers Steam Curator List

    Not Diablo news but here’s a quick update on some of the action that’s been happening on the main IncGamers.com site.

    First up we have now created the IncGamers Steam Curator list, so if you’re a Steam user, you can now track all the very best PO games which have been hand-picked by the IncGamers team. We are encouraging all PC Steam users to follow the list and tell their friends about it too. The more people that follow the less chance they’ll end up buying terrible games thanks to our team’s expert opinions.

    There’s also been stacks of content updates this week including the regular weekly podcast (listen to this week’s here), a Wasteland 2 guide, Endless Legend review, Jane Jensen interview and much more.

    Don’t forget to check the site daily for all the latest PC game news, videos,  and features.

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    Tagged As: | Categories: IncGamers News | No Comments