Recent Features

Diablo 3 Podcast #146: Patch 2.1, Story, and Blizzcon D3X2?

Lots on this show, including PTR Patch 2.1′s big changes, legendary item buffs, Paragon 1000 achieved, the Stash space emergency and micro-transactions, Diablo 3′s story and “demon soul hooks,” and Blizzcon 2014 Diablo 3 expansion announcement expectations. Featuring Flux, N3rdwords and Neinball.

Approximate topic starting times:

  • 2:30 — Paragon 1000 has been achieved. Does everyone have amazement?
  • 5:00 — Seasons and Patch 2.1 should go live simultaneously?
  • 11:00 — Legendary item buffs on the PTR. Looking forward to new items when 2.1 goes live, since Blizzard doesn’t hate the Monk (currently). Hydra build rules, but intentionally bugged on PTR?
  • 18:30 — Story implications of the Black Soulstone and why Diablo is free in Prime Evil form. Adria setting “demon soul hooks” is obviously a metcon, but is it parsimonious with the larger story/lore/plot? Both guests surprisingly say yes.
  • 27:00 — Is Diablo 3 + expansion packs self-contained? Will Diablo 4 be set a week later just continuing the same story? Or a totally new story, set centuries earlier or later?
  • 37:30 — Stash space insufficient = biggest problem in Diablo 3? One guest disagrees.
  • 40:00 — Most fans accept micro-transactions these days. Why isn’t Blizzard selling more stash tabs yet? Votes have shown most fans would accept this.
  • 47:30 — Diablo 3 expansion #2 announced at Blizzcon later this year? Everyone votes yes, though tentatively.
  • 52:00 — There are a lot of Blizzard games out and/or under development. Busiest days ever in Irvine?
  • 54:00 — Bonus secret trick to guarantee Greed’s Domain entrance?!?

  • The Diablo 3 Podcast Episode Guide in provides links to every show, plus quick summaries.

    Read More & Comment >>
    Reaper of Souls Item Sets Illustrated

    A fan assembled all six of the class-specific item sets in Reaper of Souls, took pics of them on each gender for each class, and provided views from all angles. It’s quite a useful presentation, and credit to Zeldrin for creating it.

    I found it interesting since I’d never actually seen the full sets so clearly. Everyone’s got a few or all of the items from each set, but usually mixed with other gear, some transmogged or vanishing dyed, etc. So here they are, unadulterated and straight from the D3 artist’s tablets to your screen. All the sets (except for Firebird’s, which adds a source) consist of six items: helm, shoulders, chest, gloves, legs, and boots, so visually they are pretty much apples to apples comparisons. So here are Reaper of Souls Item Sets Illustrated:


    DiabloWikiLegacy Of Raekor (armory), Barbarian set. Helm, shoulders, chest, gloves, legs, boots.


    DiabloWikiArmor Of Akkhan (armory), Crusader set. Helm, shoulders, chest, gloves, legs, boots.

    Demon Hunter

    DiabloWikiEmbodiment of the Marauder (armory), Demon Hunter set. Helm, shoulders, chest, gloves, legs, boots.


    DiabloWikiRaiment of a Thousand Storms (armory), Monk set. Helm, shoulders, chest, gloves, legs, boots.

    Witch Doctor

    DiabloWikiHelltooth Harness (armory), Witch Doctor set. Helm, shoulders, chest, gloves, legs, boots. (This set apparently lacks the light weight and flexibility of the huge slabs of unrefined steel that the other classes have strapped to their bodies, as both of these weary medical professionals are bent double beneath the weight of their assorted shark teeth, baboon femurs, and coconut shells.)


    DiabloWikiFirebird’s Finery (armory), Wizard set. Helm, shoulders, chest, gloves, source, legs, boots. (Firebird’s has a seventh item, a Source, which is the only difference in the slots filled by these sets.)

    Diablo 3 “Gear Sets”

    This whole presentation reminds me of the hot (pre-game) topic of DiabloWikiGear Sets. We’ve got a big wiki article about them, and “Gear Sets” was a regular news category from 2010-2012, with 29 news items so categorized.

    Read More & Comment >>

    Big Changes Coming to Reflects Damage

    Posted 11 Dec 2012 by

    The Boss Modifier DiabloWikiReflects 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.

    Since reflects damage currently has the ability to deal millions of EHP within a couple seconds, it is undeniably the strongest source of damage in the game on any monster power. Telling players to get millions of EHP to survive killing themselves when they are already over-geared for the monster power they are playing on is unreasonable. One of these can easily bring balance to reflects damage (Only need one):

    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 DiabloWikiboss 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 DiabloWikiMultishot 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?