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A Total Guide to Greater Rifts

Greater Rifts (GRs, initially known as Tiered Rifts) are a higher level of Nephalem Rift, meant to provide a greater challenge and greater rewards for players geared well enough to take them on. Greater Rifts are timed, and *must* be completed within 15 minutes to earn rewards. All treasure in Greater Rifts, with usually a legendary item or two, comes from the DiabloWikiGreater Rift Guardian (GRG) which is an upgraded version of the regular DiabloWikiRift Guardians.

Greater Rift CompletionDifficulty: Greater Rifts are numbered as a measure of their difficulty. A level 1 Greater Rift is very easy, equivalent to Normal difficulty (or less.) Greater Rifts scale up quickly though, and will become challenging for any player ability. Level 8 is equivalent to about Torment 1, Level 15 is equivalent to about [Torment 3, and Level 25 is approximately the same as Torment 6. There should be an infinite number or Greater Rift levels since each one merely increases the hit points and damage of the monsters by some percentage.

Shrines: There are virtually no DiabloWikishrines or DiabloWikipylons in Greater Rifts. Pylons are seen occasionally, but their bonuses last only 15 seconds (instead of the usual 30) and Blizzard specifically said that DiabloWikiConduit Pylons would not be found in Greater Rifts since they are so powerful they would skew the entire rift DiabloWikiLeaderboard system.

Dying in Greater Rifts

Revive at Corpse. No.

No Respecs: Characters can reallocate their Paragon Points while in a Rift, but can not access their inventory or skill menus (DiabloWikirespec) while in a Greater Rift. It is possible to return to town mid-GR, and players can respec and make repairs then, though it’s not recommended since the GR is a timed race. This is a feature designed to limit exploits via equipment or skill changes, so players can’t change gear or skills to be more effective against a single target before they reach the Greater Rift Guardian for instance.

Rewards: Items and gold do not drop in Greater Rifts, and there are no chests or other clickables. All treasure comes from defeating the Greater Rift Guardian, who drops a huge amount of stuff, about double that of a normal Rift Guardian, and has a very high probability of dropping at least one legendary item. (Note that the lack of gold and chests hurts the effectiveness of legendary items such as DiabloWikiGoldwrap and DiabloWikiHarrington Waistguard that proc up in effectiveness via gold pickups or chest/clickables opening.)

Progress Bar: The progress bar in a Greater Rift increases gradually from killing trash mobs, but jumps up by larger amounts for Elite kills. (Elites drop objects that look a bit like gooey health orbs, which count for big boosts in the progress bar when collected.) This is a feature designed to keep players from simply rushing past Elites to more quickly finish the rift by killing trash mobs, as can be done in normal Nephalem Rifts, and players will fill their progress bar more quickly by killing Elites than by skipping them, except in very rare long Elite battles.

Accessing and Process

  1. # Get a Greater Rift Keystone level 1 from completing a Nephalem Rift. – Drop rate still being determined.
  2. Use the GR Keystone to open a portal to a Greater Rift at the regular Nephalem Obelisk next to DiabloWikiOrek.
  3. Kill all the mobs in the Greater Rift before the timer runs out.
  4. No regular or champion mobs drop loot in Greater Rifts.
  5. The Rift Guardian will drop loot regardless if the timer has run out or not.
  6. If the Rift Guardian is killed before the timer runs out he will drop a Greater Rift Keystone.
  7. The Keystone’s level is determined by how quickly the Greater Rift was cleared. The quicker, the higher the GR key fragment.

Progress Bar and Rift Speed

The progress bar in a Greater Rift looks the same as the bar in a normal Nephalem Rift, with two added slider needles, displayed above and below the bar. The total bar coloured in orange, and the icon above it show your current progress towards completing the rift. The icon below it and any colour in blue shows how fast you need to progress to complete the rift in time.

greater rift progress bar

Ahead of the progress time

When players are battling through a Rift that’s just at the limit of their killing power, they will often see their progress dropping behind and the bar showing blue, before they kill a couple of Elites in a row and see the bonus from Elites shoot them back up ahead of schedule.

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A Guide to Diablo: IncGamers site changes – Here’s what we’ve done

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.

change view

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 StarterThread Starter -Points: 15 -You have started 5 Threads
Topic RaiserTopic Raiser – Points: 45 -You have started 20 Threads
Town CryerTown Cryer – Points: 90 -You have started 50 Threads
ConfabulatorConfabulator – Points: 91 -You have started 80 Threads

Setting the Agenda Setting the Agenda – Points: 120 -You have started 120 Threads


Primary Source Primary Source – Points: 1 – Somebody out there liked one of your posts.

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Diablo 3 and Reaper of Souls Economy: Gems and Crafting Materials Tutorial

Posted 6 Mar 2014 by

A constant topic of discussion in Clan chat the last few days has been the crazy swings (escalations) in prices for commodities. Everyone is a part of the Diablo 3 and Reaper of Souls economy, or soon will be and it’s interesting to see how it’s been evolving of late. Prices for some things, especially flawless square gems, are much higher than they’ve ever been before, even though all current gems will become essentially worthless the moment Reaper of Souls launches, since Marquise gems drop in the end game the same way Flawless Square gems drop now.

Y R U cost so much?

Y R U cost so much?

Once I saw that in the RoS beta, and the new tiers of crafting materials (all current materials are as worth as little as as Flawless Square gems in RoS), and the fact that the Auction House was shutting down before Reaper’s launch, I cam to two conclusions and took action back in December: 1) All current items and materials would be obsolete and worthless in Reaper of Souls, and 2) I should therefore sell them ASAP since they were sure to lose all value as the expansion came closer.

I was 100% correct on point #1, and almost entirely wrong on point #2.

Why? What’s happened to item and material values? What’s valuable now to save and what should you be selling or hoarding for Reaper of Souls? This article covers all that on the click through, but here’s a quick comparison to show how much the game changes have altered the value/cost of things.

    • D3v1, in-game costs to create a Marquise gem: 66.2 million gold, 10 Demonic Essences, 4893 Tomes of Secret, 2187 Flawless Square Gems.
    • D3v2, in-game costs to create a Marquise gem: 9,370,000 gold, 2143 flawless squares.
    • If anything, that understates the price difference, since in D3v1 players had to obtain all of those Tomes of Secret, which cost *more* than the flawless squares themselves, for some gem types. 

      Flawless Square Gem Prices in D3v2

      I took several surveys of the gem prices in the Auction House for Hardcore and Softcore on the Americas and Europe servers this afternoon. There was some fluctuation between each time I checked, but the prices were fairly stable on the whole. (The most changes were between the last 10 sales and last 24 hours sales. There you’ll often see considerable short term swings, as people game the market to create very short term shifts in price.)

      Flawless Squares:

    • Americas Softcore: Amethyst 15k, Emerald 29k, Ruby 9k, Topaz 30k
    • Europe Softcore: Amethyst 5k, Emerald 32k, Ruby 6k, Topaz 45k
    • Americas Hardcore: Amethyst 32k, Emerald 34k, Ruby 45k, Topaz 5k
    • Europe Hardcore: Amethyst 22k, Emerald 20k, Ruby 25k, Topaz 4k

Amusing the differences in gem values between HC and SC, eh? That Topaz price is my favorite, since there are just as many Wizards and Witch Doctors in Hardcore, but the priority has to always be staying alive, not just dealing more damage. We won’t have an AH in RoS, but if we did I think the difference in Topaz prices between HC and SC would lessen, since the highest level gem, a Flawless Royal, yields 280 Mainstat in armor. That’s amazing for damage, but it’s also a considerable 28 All Res bonus, which really benefits Wiz/WDs, since an armor gem is giving them almost half the bonus of a Diamond on top of their 280 mainstat benefit.

On the developer live stream last week I brought up the disparity in secondary properties of the mainstats, and how in RoS with such huge stats (8000+ mainstat on a well-geared lvl 70) it’s really a substantial advantage to have INT or STR for a mainstat, compared to DEX which only boosts Dodge, and not even that very much. Happily he agreed and outlined some ideas he’s had about boosting the value of Dodge to make it more comparable to the Defense and ResAll secondary bonuses.


Radiant Star Gem Prices in D3v2

The other end of the Auction House gem price scale is the Radiant Star gem. That’s the 2nd highest level gem available in D3, and the highest level that can be sold on the AH. (In D3 a Marquise is made from 3 Radiant Stars + 20m, and is Bound to Account. In RoS Marquise drop constantly from lvl 65+ monsters, which makes any gold you spend on a Marquise today purely 3-week rental.)

The price of this gem varied quite a bit in D3v1, since there were substantial multipliers. It took 729 flawless squares + 1631 Tomes of Secret + 15,400,000 in gold to create one, and the price was therefore more determined by the value of the gems and the Tomes of Secret than the 15.4m Jeweler fees. The cheapest type were always Topaz, and the least I ever saw them selling for was around 18m in Softcore, which was actually less than the price of the materials and the crafting costs. More popular gem types like Rubies and Emeralds (and Amethysts in Hardcore) sold for much more, 30-50m depending on the current value of their ingredients.

Here’s what they’re selling for now in D3v2, with prices averaged from several checks I did on the AH over the course of the day.

Radiant Stars:

    • Americas Softcore: Amethyst 18.4m, Emerald 19.9m, Ruby 13m, Topaz 27m.
    • Europe Softcore: Amethyst 9m, Emerald 22.4m, Ruby 9.5m, Topaz 31.4m.
    • Americas Hardcore: Amethyst 37.8m, Emerald 40m, Ruby 48.5m, Topaz 9.5m.
    • Europe Hardcore: Amethyst 21m, Emerald 24m, Ruby 28m, Topaz 7.6m.

As stated above, the cost to craft up a Radiant Star is much lower in D3v2 than it was previously. The current costs are just gold and gems, and it costs 729 Flawless Stars and 3,090,000 gold to make a Radiant Star. That’s down more than 12m gold from the D3v1 price, plus those 1631 Tomes of Secret are gone entirely. (Those often cost 10k or more in HC, adding 16m or more to the total cost.) And it’s even cheaper to make a Marquise now, since the crafting cost just for that gem used to be 20,000,000 and it’s now 100,000 gold.

Market Disparities and Profit?

First of all, I should make one key point again. All of these gems are going to be worthless in 3 weeks, for anyone who upgrades to Reaper of Souls. Assuming the devs don’t entirely change the drop tables and gem qualities from how they were during the entire Beta test, every player who gets past lvl 65 in RoS will start finding Marquise gems like they were candy falling from the sky.

Thus the idea of investing 20-30m to obtain a Radiant Star gem is insane long term, as you’re spending that for 1/3 the price of a gem that you’ll get for free in 3 weeks. That’s a pricey rental, but if you’ve got the gold, or think you can use it a bit and then liquidate it, who am I to stop you?

So, what does this math mean? Do gems of low and high level cost what they *should* cost? The price of Flawless Squares is the one that’s open to debate, since all four (five, but Diamonds can’t be listed in the AH now, and are selling for vastly more than the others in non-AH transactions) drop at exactly the same frequency. Thus there’s no scarcity reason that any should cost more or less than the rest. The value is entirely derived from desirability and utility, which is shown clearly via the difference in price of Amethysts between softcore and hardcore.

The price of Radiant Stars and other higher level gems is just arithmetic, though. Add the Jeweler costs to the cost of the gems required. That was a little more complicated to figure in D3v1 since you had to factor in the Tomes of Secret as well, but those are gone and the whole thing is simplified. You can work it backwards too, and compare the price of the Radiant Star gems to the flawless squares that create them.

    • Radiant Star gem price – 3,010,000 Jeweler cost, then divide that by 729 to determine the flawless square gem price.

For example, a Radiant Star Topaz costs 27m in the AH on Americas softcore. Using whole numbers, you subtract the 3m upgrade price to get 24m, and divide that by the 729 flawless square topaz = 32,922g per FS amethyst. Those gems are selling for almost exactly 30k, but remember the 15% fee for all sales on the AH. So if you’re planning to upgrade all the way and then sell the Radiant Star, that’s .85 x 27m = 22,950,000 gold to you. Which divided by 729 = 31,481g.Thus there’s the potential for a small profit if you buy the flawless squares for 30k, then sell the Radiant Star for 27m. And every flawless square you found would boost your profit by a little more than 31k. Or you could just sell them one at a time for 30k, which would net you 26.5k a piece. (With the benefit of a certain sale, since people are buying Flawless Squares like mad, while very few Radiant Stars are being sold.)The potential profits are much higher in Hardcore, where farming can’t be done as quickly and relentlessly, and where gems sometimes leave the economy (embedded in the equipment of dead heroes).

There appear to be considerable profit margins available in HC. One example:

Radiant Star emeralds on US Hardcore are selling for 39-40m in the AH. So do the math: 40m – 3m = 37m / 729 = 50,754g. Yet flawless square emeralds are selling for 34k. Thus the price to create a radiant star emerald in US HC should be around 34 x 729 = 24,786,000 + 3.1m = 28m vs. the 39m sales price.

Bobby's Red EyesEven after you factor in 15% for Bobby, but that’s still a big profit: 39m x .85 = 33,150,000. Not bad for an investment of around 25m, plus however long it takes you to set the Jeweler to upgrade all those gems. Which isn’t very long these days, thanks to the ability to stack up mass crafting queues, which can run while you’re Alt+Tab’ed out watching porn checking email.

(Obviously this assumes that people are actually buying Radiant Star gems for a 3 week rental, which is kind of insane, for reasons explained above.)


Gem Upgrade Cost Comparison

Here are all the numbers, for easy reference.

D3v1 cumulative gem upgrade prices: (Not the current values.)

    • 1 Flawless Square gem: Findable at lvl 60.
    • 1 Perfect Square gem: 30k gold & 3 Tomes of Secret (3 Flawless Squares)
    • 1 Radiant Square gem: 140k gold & 15 ToS (9 Flawless Squares)
    • 1 Star gem: 500k gold, 54 ToS, (27 Flawless Squares)
    • 1 Flawless Star: 1,600k gold, 174 ToS, (81 Flawless Squares)
    • 1 Perfect Star: 5,000k gold, 537 ToS, (243 Flawless Squares)
    • 1 Radiant Star: 15,400k gold, 1631 ToS, (729 Flawless Squares)
    • 1 Marquise gem: 66.2 million gold, 10 Demonic Essences, 4893 Tomes of Secret (2187 Flawless Square Gems).
    • D3v2 cumulative gem upgrade prices. (The current values.)
    • 1 Flawless Square gem Findable at level 60.
    • 1 Perfect Square gem: 5k gold (3 flawless squares)
    • 1 Radiant Square gem: 25k gold (9 flawless squares)
    • 1 Star gem: 95k gold (27 flawless squares)
    • 1 Flawless Star gem: 315k gold (81 flawless squares)
    • 1 Perfect Star gem: 995k gold (243 flawless squares)
    • 1 Radiant Star gem: 3,090,000 gold (729 flawless squares)
    • 1 Marquise gem: 9,370,000 gold. (2143 flawless squares)

Reaper of Souls Gem Upgrade Costs

Something I forgot to include in the first draft of this article is the bright future. The gem upgrade ordeal in D3v1 was clearly meant as a very long term grindy thing that would probably require the Auction House to complete. The gold costs are very high for self finding, and the materials are even worse. 2143 flawless squares and 4893 Tomes of Secret? Imagine picking up that many on your own, and that’s just for one type of gem.

It’s possible that someone has self found up to a Marquise — it’s been 21 months since launch, so say you’d played D3 on 500 days; you’d have had to pick up and save up 4-5 of that type of flawsie, 10 Tomes of Secret, and 132k gold per day, to accumulate enough materials to make your one Marquise gem. Man, it sounds grim when you put it in those terms, doesn’t it? Like Andy Dufresne tunneling through that wall out of Shawshank, one spoonful of crumbling concrete per day.

Happily, your Marquise efforts were not enlivened by prison sex.

The above said, Marquise were not part of the gem system at launch. That level of gem was added in a patch to give AH-rich players something to gold sink on, and except for the bonus to weapon damage, all the other improvements from the Marquise were tiny, compared to the marginal cost.

That is not the case with gems in Reaper of Souls. The d3v2 gem rebalance cut crafting costs greatly, lowering the gold fees and removing the Tomes of Secret and not replacing them with any other material. But you’ve still got to accumulate an amount of gems that’s basically impossibly without the Auction House.

Reaper of Souls gem upgrade prices:

Marquise Gems — Drop freely.
Imperial Gems — 3 Marquise + 200k gold. (This level of gem occasionally drops in Master and above. For every one you find subtract 3 Marquise and 200k from the costs for higher level gems.)
Flawless Imperial Gems — 3 Imperial Gems + 1 Death’s Breath + 300k gold (cumulative cost: 900k, 1 DB, 9 Marquise gems)
Royal Gems — 3 Imperial Gems + 1 Death’s Breath + 400k (cumulative cost 3.1m, 3 DB, 27 Marquise, .)
Flawless Royal Gems — 3 Royal Gems + 500k + 1 DB (Cumulative cost: 9.8m, 81 Marquise, 9 Death’s Breath.)

The highest level gem in RoS requires 9.8m and 81 Marquise gems, or a bit less if you find some Imperials. That’s not a lot, especially compared to D3v’s gem cost and quantities. Over the last couple of months of the RoS beta I accumulated several hundred of each type of Marquise gem, literally 300-500 of each, and picked up 1-2m gold per hour of playtime on Torment 1. There’s no Auction House and gems are all soul bound so you’ve got to find them yourself, but the system is designed for an average player to be able to trick out their main character with half a dozen Flawless Royal gems after a few months of play time.

One additional detail; towards the end of the Beta the devs began moving gems into the crafting and enchanting costs. Lots of the better legendary/set crafting recipes required 1 Flawless Royal Gem, which was much too expensive in the opinions of every fan I talked to, and which the devs said was subject to change.A more common and more reasonable expense was the price to enchant legendary/set jewelry. That was initially just gold and materials, but near the end of the beta it changed to cost one Flawless Imperial gem, + some materials — but no gold. That gem cost 900k and 9 Marquise to make, which shifts the economy long term, since many players would find Marquise gems, rather than gold the bottleneck to that enchant.There’s no telling if we’ll get further tweaks to the price of crafting and enchanting at RoS’ launch (I’m sure we’ll see some) but the overall goal is clear; players will be able to self find the gold and materials, will be able to achieve the highest quality gear via their own finding, and bringing over a lot of gold from D3 isn’t going to make things all that much easier. Gold certainly helps in Reaper of Souls, but with gems required for crafting and enchanting, gems you can only self-find, the devs are clearly limiting the value of gold and requiring play time, not just riches. (The same philosophy they emphasized with the BoA DiabloWikiDemonic Essences added for the v1.07 crafting recipes.) 


Are you guys buying gems? Selling them? Enjoying upgrading them for such a low price? I’m torn; the gold you can make selling just flawsies is crazy, but they feel so cheap to upgrade, compared to how they always were previously, that I want to do that too. Now if someone on US HC would just buy the Radiant Star emeralds I made to test prices and the sales market, I’d really be happy.

Tagged As: | Categories: Crafting, Economy, Enchanting, Loot 2.0, Reaper of Souls