It’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:
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!
1. Current Monk Issues
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.
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.
This is a more fundamental problem than the other two issues. Mere number tweaks would likely not result in this issue being resolved.
Regular readers will have noticed quite a few changes on Diablo: IncGamers since the launch of Reaper of Souls which was the motivation for us to make some of the changes we had been thinking about for a while.
When RoS launched we pushed the first stage of front page layout changes live. We know everyone likes to read their content in different ways so the site was changed to a similar layout to the main IncGamers site. Of course not every one will love that format so in the past week we set to work on the second phase which was giving you the option to read the content in the old format if you so desired.
In case you hadn’t spotted it, there are a couple of buttons above the news that allow you to switch to your preferred format.
Probably the toughest job we had to undertake was the forums. We have used the same forum system for around a decade and there were millions of posts to port over. It was important to us to make sure that threads from the old forum were not lost, we’d have hell to pay from you guys if they went missing Remember the great forum crash of 2003? That was not pretty.
So why the change? There were numerous reasons, the next version of the same forum was bloated with features that were useless to the community here. Spammers were also a consideration and the previous software was starting to struggle with the rise in spammers over the last couple of years. We needed a system that could pro- actively catch them and then make life easier for IncGamers moderators to deal with anything that managed to slip through.
The end results once we switched were good. The forums are now easier to use, faster and more robust. It’s taken some time to iron out issues with posts moved over from the old system but I would say we are 95% there with most things now. The forum is now easier to use and has more features to track new content additions.
One of the main issues we had during the change was with your logins. We have a custom login system that ties your forum account to the main site. When we moved forums that obviously broke down and had to be recreated. One of the issues we came up against was the inability for guests to post in the news and members who were logged in seeing a captcha. This was not acceptable so it took a few days for me to sort out but thankfully it now all works.
Regarding commenting on news, originally we had the news post into the community forum but as things move quite quickly here as far as content is concerned, we thought it best to create a separate forum for the news discussions. This reorganisation prevents any community forum discussion being lost in a pile of news. Your discussions are important after all.
Regarding accounts. Some of you have been registered here for over a decade and we have been helping members who have had login issues since the switch because they no longer have access to the email they originally registered with. If there are any of you still caught in that trap then we can sort it for you. Send an email here and we will deal with it.
With the new forums came new features, and something we’ve wanted to do for some time is highlight pro-active members and also award trophies for actions by the community. Elly sat down over a few days to come up with the points and reward system. You may have spotted the icons on threads but so you know how it works I have posted all of the trophies below for reference.
There are still a few things to do but the core updates are now in place. Your feedback on anything we do is much appreciated and a special thanks to the PALS who have helped make all the changes possible with their contributions.
Thread Starter -Points: 15 -You have started 5 Threads
Topic Raiser – Points: 45 -You have started 20 Threads
Town Cryer – Points: 90 -You have started 50 Threads
Confabulator – Points: 91 -You have started 80 Threads
Primary Source – Points: 1 – Somebody out there liked one of your posts.
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Big Changes Coming to Reflects DamagePosted 11 Dec 2012 by
The Boss Modifier Reflects Damage is by far the most dangerous thing in the entire game, to a well-equipped character. As DPS goes up higher and faster than EHP, the damage coming back, especially when dealt to a large number of RD enemies at once (such as a boss pack), can be devastating. Players are full of complaints and suggested fixes for to how RD works, and one fan offered a bunch of them. A CM replied not point by point, but by admitting the devs agree that RD is OP and that it will be substantially reworked in some future patch.
1.) Allow dexterity a chance to dodge ticks of reflect damage.
2.) Give all classes the “30% damage reduction” that melee’s have to use against reflects damage
3.) Allow life steal to roll on something other than weapons.
4.) Cap reflects damage to do as much as standing in an arcane beam (Do you think it should hit harder than arcane beams?)
5.) Cap reflects damage to only come from 1 source or allow it to only be on 1 mob in the group at a time and not every mob in the group.
6.) Make reflects damage toggle on after a couple seconds of engaging a player.
7.) Cap the range of reflects damage so It won’t hit you if you’re 30 yards away.
8.) Cap reflects damage to do no more than XX% of the players health per second.
9.) Make reflects damage unable to hurt when the player is below 10% health and unable to do lethal damage.
10.) Make critical hits reflect the same amount of damage as a normal hit.
11.) Turn the damage reflected into a ball of energy that appears over the mobs head for 1 second (spirit bomb?!) then fires at the player allowing the player a chance to react and skill dodge
Lylirra: Two quick things:
1) We’re looking to redesign how the Reflects Damage affix works, as well as make it so that pet damage will no longer reflect back on the player. I went into a bit more detail here. (I believe the buff while active will have some sort of visual indicator, too.)
2) After seeing a number of posts from players about RD dealing what they felt to be TOO much damage (especially from minions), we did some additional testing and discovered that Rare minions with the affix were in fact doing more damage than intended. This is an issue we’re looking to address in an upcoming patch.
I’m not sure if these points would change your opinions at all on the subject, but I felt the information was worth pointing out.
Please don’t take offense to this CM, but why was this stuff not tested? Why has it taken this long after release for the devs to acknowledge problems or unbalances like this?
Lylirra: Which stuff specifically? The dynamics for RD really only changed with 1.0.5 (for the reasons I talked about in the post I linked + the reduction to defensive bonuses), and I believe the bug is pretty new as well.
Lylirra, when you said “pets”, does this include the Demon Hunter’s Sentries and Wizard’s Hydra?
Lylirra: It does.
I personally have no problem with the way it is now but if it had been tested it could have been polished a bit better then it is now.
Lylirra: We were honestly pretty happy with the way RD functioned prior to 1.0.5, and thought it was in a good place in terms of balance. That changed, of course, whenever we implemented Monster Power and reduced defensive bonuses in 1.0.5. After reviewing player feedback post-patch and reexamining the affix as a whole, we decided that it could use some improvements. Overall, we think the affix will be much more manageable (if not potentially more enjoyable) as a result. That doesn’t mean our earlier opinion was wrong, though, it just existed under a different set of conditions.
I am 100% in agreement that it needs an obvious visual as a tip off, but I hope they don’t nerf RD entirely. If it’s just another boss modifier that’s irrelevant to anyone with decent life steal, then what’s the point?
I do agree that it’s too much damage now and too sudden; I don’t mind having to alter my play a bit to deal with the mod — that’s the whole point in having boss mods — but the lack of warning and the way it counts up from the boss and minions all at once is too punishing. I’d suggest just capping at 2 or 3 the total number of targets procing their RD at once, so that big AoE attacks aren’t instantly fatal to the attacker. My Demon Hunter can go from 100% healthy to 100% dead in just two Multishot blasts if I get the boss and several minions with the attack, and that’s pretty harsh without any visual warning other than what you might see while trying to scan the boss properties tooltip mid-battle.
How do you guys feel about Reflects Damage, and Blizzard’s plans for changes? Do you want RD nerfed or are you low budget and amused that there’s still *something* in the game that can give the really rich players a moment of inconvenience?