Interesting conversations of late about the Demonic Essence Drop Rates now experienced in Diablo 3. Currently the odds of a Demonic Essence dropping from an elite, a Gobby, a golden chest, or another qualifying game event is 15% on MP0, and it increases by 10% of the previous value at each higher Monster Power level, up to a maximum chance of 38.9% on MP10. This is much less of an increase (with higher MP) than monster hit points, experience rewards, etc. So does that mean DEs should drop more in line with those other scale ups? Or are DEs fundamentally different in value and function and thus scarcity?
It’s worth debating, and a Blue reply to a “make moar DEs drop!” thread raises some issues for thought.
Couple of questions for you so I can get a bit of context for where your feedback is coming from (anyone is welcome to chime in):
The key issue is the fact that DEs can’t be bought, sold, traded, or even given away. They therefore require play time, and while lots of gold can buy all the other mats, and uber gear that allows for faster killing, it still takes time to build up DEs, even on MP10. (In fact, DEs are faster farmed on lower MPs, since the monster hit points scale up much higher than the DE drop rates.)
It’s very much a rich vs. poor argument as well. Players with huge bank rolls generally think DEs should drop much more often and/or be tradable. It’s only logical; if you’ve got the gold to buy all the mats and pay for all the crafts you want, then the only thing limiting your crafted item production is the fact that DEs can’t be bought or found that quickly.
On the other end of the economic spectrum, poorer players can easily build up far more DEs than they can afford to use. Mats cost money, crafts cost money, and if your goal or play style is being good enough for say, MP2, then you don’t really need uber gear and it’s not worth it spending thousands of crafts trying to perfectly optimize each of the five crafted item slots. Even if you could afford them.
The larger issue, and one I think Blizzard’s devs embrace with their ongoing “reduce the impact of the Auction House” design theory, is the fact that DEs are the one aspect of Diablo 3’s item system where success can’t just be purchased. Players must play to earn DEs, and that puts a limit on how much crafting anyone can do. Sure, gold helps, and a player with a lot of gold (or RMAH $) can buy other great gear and thus increase their DE acquisition. But Demonic Essences do put a cap on any pay-to-win approach, since it’s impossible to simply charge 50,000 of them and craft all night.
So what do you guys think about the overall DE drop rate, and is anyone arguing a balance point that’s not totally reflective of and beneficial to your current play style and economic strata?