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The State of the Monk: Additional follower or future OP class?

state of the monk in diablo 3It’s no surprise that the Monk class has been in need of some love pre 2.1. However with the second iteration of the patch on the PTR that need has not yet been abided. People are still clamoring for more sweeping changes(pun intended).

I was a heavy Monk user pre ROS and took a break with the xpac to delve into my first love(WD) and my new fling(crusader). I returned to the Monk only a few weeks ago and what I found was a shell of what I had left. After suffering for a long time as a WD it was nice when they finally rose to prominence. After a while on the top I wanted a new challenge and set my sights back on my monk, however even this challenge seems to daunting then all that time as a struggling WD. Diablo Forum MVP Druin put together an eloquent look at the myriad issues facing the class:


Hello everyone!

I am back from vacation and I am looking to write up a concise review of where we stand in 2.1.

My plan is to give a quick overview of our major issues then discuss the 2.1 changes and how they affect the various facets of our class.

I will be using this thread to fine-tune what we want to communicate to the devs and then I will make a major “state of monks in 2.1″ thread on the PTR forums to attempt to get some help for our lovely class! :D

1. Current Monk Issues

Damage

This is really at the forefront of the monk issues.

Since the release of RoS, monks have been having a tough time with DPS. We have a very limited range of options mostly centering around the skill Exploding Palm. (Un)fortunately EP is being changed as it breaks greater rifts (along with Rimeheart and Furnace) so our only source of widely competitive damage is going away. This leaves monks in a pretty bad spot.

Our spenders do very little damage (I mean VERY little) relative to their cost and our generators are used more as proc-vehicles for Odyn Son, Thunderfury, Shard of Hate and Rime/Furnace more than as sources of damage themselves. This leaves us with our 6pc Raiment of 1000 Storms which makes DS proc a 3000% weapon damage attack on cast. 3000% damage is a lot and it scales with lightning damage gear but DS has a flat-immutable 6 second cooldown. This can be mitigated to some extent by using Jawbreaker to give “free” dashing strike charges but that interaction is quite clunky.

Basically, monks will be forced into a clunky, hard-to-use situationally terrible Storm-breaker set in order to compete with other classes in damage. If they don’t want to use this mechanic, they will do very poor damage.

Durability

Next on the list is our ability to survive. This is a more controversial topic with some finding survival to be quite easy and many others finding it to be quite hard. In 2.1 with the change from dex giving dodge to dex giving armor and the change from OWE to Harmony, many monks who had minor synergy with OWE will see a minor tankiness boost. (my Raiment set for example)
On the other hand, monk who are deeply invested into OWE will see a major tankiness loss. (my Shatter-palm set). In either case, both types of monks probably have a lot of trouble living in T6 without 2x Unity or the constant dashing from Storm-breaker. Why is this? Because monks have to face-tank so much stuff.

Our primary source of resource generation comes from skills that require you to be up-close and personal with mobs which means a lot of damage can’t be avoided. To compensate for this, end-game monks are forced to take defensive passives (Harmony) defensive skills (Epiphany-shroud / Serenity / Inner Sanc / Blinding Flash) and CDR in basically every single spec. This is extremely limiting to the monk playstyle though arguably less of a problem than the DPS as the defensive skill/CDR solution does exist.

Additionally, sustain is nearly non-existent. LoH requires primary affixes which takes away from our already terrible DPS, LPS is the same, LPSS both takes primary affixes AND is extremely poor and Globes took a pretty big hit in 2.1. Monks actually have access to healing skills but, for some reason, they are tuned to be SO weak that they are essentially non-existent.

Resource Management

This is a more fundamental problem than the other two issues. Mere number tweaks would likely not result in this issue being resolved.

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Guide: Legendary Gems

legendary gems guideLegendary Gems were first officially revealed in the Patch 2.1 preview blog back in June of this year.   They will be added to Reaper of Souls in Patch 2.1, and are currently undergoing testing on the PTR.

The gems add special bonuses when socketed in rings and amulets (only on Characters and not on Followers), and can be upgraded in power via DiabloWikiUrshi, the NPC who appears after Greater Rifts are cleared.

While the developers are calling them “legendary gems” these socketables have nothing in common with regular DiabloWikigems in stats or appearance, and are more analogous to the Rainbow Facet unique jewels of Diablo 2. The main difference in Diablo 3 is that these gems can only be socketed in jewelry, and the way the gems can be upgraded to improve their functions over time.

Legendary Gems Listing

While the Legendary Gems are still undergoing development on the DiabloWikiPTR, their stats and bonuses are changing constantly. A major revision was created on July 15, 2014 with new or upgraded stats for almost every gem. The following are the most current details about Legendary Gems.

 

DiabloWikiBane of the Powerful
bane of the powerful
  • Gain 30% increased damage for 20 seconds after killing an elite pack.
  • Upgrade rank grants: +1 second buff duration.
  • Rank 50 unlocks: Gain 20% bonus damage to elites.
DiabloWikiBane of the Trapped
bane of the trapped
  • Increase damage against enemies under control-impairing effects by 20%.
  • Upgrade rank grants: +0.5% damage.
  • Rank 50 unlocks: Gain an aura that reduces the movement speed of enemies within 15 yards by 30%.
DiabloWikiBoon of the Hoarder
  • 30% chance on killing an enemy to cause an explosion of gold.
  • Upgrade rank grants: +1% chance on kill.
  • Rank 50 unlocks: Gain 30% increased movement speed for 3 seconds after picking up gold.
 DiabloWikiEnforcer
 enforcer
  • Increase the Critical Hit Chance of your pets by 20%.
  • Upgrade rank grants: +0.4% Critical Hit Chance. Max +20% upgrade (+40% total).
  • Rank 50 unlocks: Your pets are unkillable.
Bliz Note: As was discussed in another thread, allowing this this gem to rank up to +100% pet Crit would likely cause undesired gearing issues and probably be a little out of line.
DiabloWikiGem of Efficacious Toxin
gem of efficacious toxin
  • Poison all enemies hit for 1000% weapon damage over 10 seconds.
  • Upgrade rank grants: +20% weapon damage over 10 seconds.
  • Rank 50 unlocks: All enemies you poison take 10% increased damage from all sources.
DiabloWikiGogok of Swiftness
 gogok of swiftness
  • 50% chance on hit to gain Swiftness, increasing your Attack Speed by 2% for 3 seconds. This effect stacks up to 10 times.
  • Upgrade rank grants: +1% chance.
  • Rank 50 unlocks: Gain 2% Cooldown Reduction per stack of Swiftness.
 DiabloWikiInvigorating Gemstone
 invigorating gemstone
  • While under any control-impairing effects, reduce all damage taken by 30%.
  • Upgrade rank grants: +1%. Maximum +50% upgrade (80% total).
  • Rank 50 unlocks: Heal for 20% of maximum life when hit by control-impairing effect.
 DiabloWikiMirinae, Teardrop of Starweaver
 Mirinae, Teardrop of Starweaver
  • 15% chance on hit to smite a nearby enemy for 1000% weapon damage as Holy.
  • Upgrade rank grants: +20% weapon damage.
  • Rank 50 unlocks: Smite a nearby enemy every 5 seconds.
 DiabloWikiMoratorium
 Moratorium
  • 30% of all damage taken is instead staggered and dealt to you over 3 seconds.
  • Upgrade rank grants: +0.1 second to the stagger duration.
  • Rank 50 unlocks: 10% chance on kill to clear all staggered damage.
 DiabloWikiPain Enhancer
 Pain Enhancer
  • Critical hits cause the enemy to bleed for 500% weapon damage as Physical over 3 seconds.
Read More & Comment >>

Why Aren’t Nephalem Rifts Coming Free to Diablo 3?

Posted 25 Dec 2013 by

Nephalem Rifts are one of the cooler features in Reaper of Souls, according to current beta testers. They’re only available in RoS though, not on the PTR and they will not be coming to Diablo 3 via patch. Months ago when the feature was still called “Loot Runs” Blizzard said, via Twitter, that they would be added into Diablo 3 in a patch, though. Scandal! A fan brought this up and got a lengthy and very patient reply from Lylirra.

Lylirra: When we originally announced Reaper of Souls back in August, Loot Runs were a completely independent feature intended to be released as part of our pre-expansion patch. Since that announcement, Loot Runs have gone through several iterations and evolved into Nephalem Rifts, which are not only more complex in their design compared to Loot Runs, but have also become integrated with Adventure Mode and Bounties (they also tie into random item purchasing via Blood Shards, but that’s more of a tangential relationship). As a result, we made the decision to move Nephalem Rifts from the pre-expansion patch up to the expansion itself. It wasn’t an easy decision, but made the most sense given how Nephalem Rifts currently function and share dependencies with other expansion-only features.

therefore that tweet is a lie.
While the tweet may no longer be correct based on current information, it was 100% true at the time it was shared. Saying that it’s “a lie” is both spurious and factually inaccurate.

You’re welcome to disagree with our decision to evolve Loot Runs into Nephalem Rifts (which are now an expansion feature), but insinuating that we’re liars because their design has changed is unnecessary and only serves to undermine the actual value of your feedback. There’s no reason to sell yourself or your opinions short in that manner. Seriously. :)

There’s much more of the complaining and replying, if you want to click through to witness it.

Continuing the fascinating conversation:

Too late blizzard. I just saved a copy of this image and now it’s everywhere.
No need, but I admire your thinking. We’ve nothing to sweep under the rug here, though. This is just evidence of the potential downside of talking about features and systems early in design, as things are very likely to change and adapt (and sometimes very quickly too).

As noted above, if you dislike with the manner in which the design of Loot Runs/Nephalem Rifts have changed, please feel free to share that feedback–if you haven’t already.

*edit* gotcha b4 you edited it ; )
Hodor.

This is the kind of spin you only hear from Washington.
Being clear in what you say and what is being discussed isn’t spin. It’s being a responsible communicator and encouraging others to do the same.

For clarity, saying something is a lie is a pretty hefty accusation and, more importantly, implies an intent to deceive. A really basic analogy would be if your hair is currently red and you said “My hair is red.” If you later your dyed your hair black, would your prior statement be a lie? No. It just wouldn’t be accurate anymore.

Same basic principle applies. When we announced Reaper of Souls (the same day the tweet in question was made), Loot Runs were scheduled to be part of the pre-expansion patch; we wouldn’t have communicated this to players otherwise. Over time, the design and scope of Loot Runs changed and they became Nephalem Rifts, which are now an expansion-only feature.

So, were Loot Runs previously part of the pre-expansion patch? Yes. Are they currently part of the pre-expansion patch? No, the design has since changed (and is still subject to change).

Again, I’m not asking for players to change their opinions or feedback regarding the evolution of Loot Runs; I’m simply asking them to refrain from hyperbole. It makes discussions like these much more productive and meaningful.
#212 12/24/2013 3:22:00 AM

Why not do the responsible thing from here on out, and only announce systems that you are confident will pass muster?
Many players would argue the responsible thing is to announce new systems, features, and changes whenever they occur as soon as they occur (and potentially even before they occur), regardless of the fact that they may or may not be final.

I’m not saying you’re wrong or that the other philosophy is right, just pointing out that two very different, often conflicting though completely valid perspectives exist within this community. We do our best to sate both, which is why you see us caveat almost everything with phrases like “at this time” or “right now,” but there will always be situations where that’s not entirely possible.

And that’s not a defensive statement, either (we know there’s room for improvement on our side). It’s just more of a harsh reality we have to dance with from time to time.

This is unfortunate for players who wanted to continue getting new content for free in Diablo 3, rather than buying new content in the expansion pack. On the larger issue though, we spent years pre-release constantly badgering Blizzard to announce more new info, tell us more about features during development, to share things while they were still in development so we could learn more about them, etc.

Meet the other side of that coin. Sometimes things they project or “promise” won’t come true. Merry Xmas!


Tagged As: | Categories: Community Relations, Controversy, Lylirra