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Blizzard Considering Diablo 3 Monsters Density Fixes

Posted 24 Jan 2013 by

A fan brought up the common complaint about insufficient density for the Diablo 3 monsters in pretty much all of the game other than some key portions of Act Three.

Grimiku: I think there are multiple reasons behind the desire for scaling monster density for the players who are asking for it. The first one that comes to mind is not the self-serving need to squeak out insane farming efficiency (there are some who seem to definitely want this), but the desire to feel that they are not losing efficiency when farming anything other than Act III. We definitely want people to farm multiple Acts, so we are discussing options to achieve that goal.

Your ideas on the subject are certainly welcome (in fact, the question of “what mob density would you choose?” is a great one to debate) and we hope that you will continue post them.

The OP in that post suggested a Monster Density option which would work allow players to custom set the number of enemies they faced. (Best I recall, the players X command in D2 *did* increase monster numbers, but DiabloWikiMonster Power in D3 does not.) I can’t see that happening (too exploitable) and you’ll note that the Blue doesn’t even acknowledge the idea or give any hint to the dev’s current thinking on the issue. Neither did DiabloWikiWyatt Cheng a couple of weeks ago:

Unfortunately increased monster density in Act 1 and 2 in Inferno difficulty did not make patch 1.0.7. It is absolutely something we would like to improve, and it is still on the list for the future. I spend most of personal play time in Act 3 as well: Keeps 1, Core, Tower, Bridge, Fields. It’s a matter of degrees, it’ll never all be balanced 100% equal in all zones everywhere you go – but they need to be comparable within a certain tolerance, and we’re definitely outside that margin right now.

One popular suggestion from weeks/months ago was for monster density to scale up with higher levels of Monster Power. That seemed like a possible fix for the lack of higher exp with higher MP, but that issue is being addressed directly in v1.07 with the exp boost per MP level rising to 25%. (I’m eager for MP2 farming, anticipating that 50% bonus to exp/MF/GF.)

I don’t see a monster density player selection, and I doubt the devs will simply double or triple the monster density all over. That would break the flow and aesthetics of Acts 1 and 2, and make them a lot harder, which would screw up the difficulty progression for new players. Also, it wouldn’t fix the issue of the poor level layouts, since all those long, narrow hallways and dead ends you see throughout Acts 1 and 2 are as much a problem (in terms of efficient exp farming) as the lack of monsters.

So I’ll once again suggest the idea I put into a recent article on farming issues. New, special dungeons in Acts 1 and 2 (and maybe 3 and 4 as well). They work a lot like the bonus dungeon maps you see in the end game in Torchlight and PoE and other ARPGs, and they could easily be added into Diablo 3 as well. This saves the devs from having to rework the entire existing acts, the bonus dungeons can be Inferno only, and since they’re not part of the normal act progression they don’t have to follow the same rules in terms of difficulty progression, level size or layout, monster density, etc.

Obviously these special dungeons would have higher monster density (akin to the juiciest parts of Act 3) and there should either be a lot of them to select from, or else they should be very deep 5 or 10 levels at least (bottomless?) so you don’t have to restart and rebuild your stacks all the time. They should have different/varied layouts (surface areas too) and they could have other fun mad modder-type features. Bonus treasure rooms, rooms with several boss packs, Champion packs with 4-8 champs in a group, timed levels, random encounters with sub-bosses like Ghom or Siegebreaker, special levels where bosses get 5 or 6 DiabloWikiboss modifiers at once, etc.

I don’t claim it’s a perfect solution, but it seems much more doable than reworking the entire existing acts. Thoughts or suggestions?

Tagged As: | Categories: Blue Posts, Grimiku, Monsters, Wyatt Cheng