We’ve had nearly two days to explore the patch and much of the early player interest and conversation concerns the Diablo 3 Patch v1.07 crafting plans/designs, where to find them, and what to craft from them. We posted all the official details about plans, Demonic Essences, and more in the patch analysis article yesterday, so I’m not going to restate all of that here. There is some new info though, or at least clarification to stress.
1) A Blizzard CM assured me that Siegebreaker is *not* one of the bosses getting a bonus chance to drop the new Crafting Plans. Only Ghom and Cydaea get that bonus in Act 3, so I guess my RNG has just been weird, since I’ve done about 6 fast runs of Ghom-to-Azmodan in Act 3, and Siegebreaker remains my best source for the new plans, having dropped 5 or 6 of them thus far. (Ghom and Cydaea have coughed up 4 or 5 each.)
2) The new Marquise Gem Designs are *not* given a bonus drop chance from those Elite Eight special sub-bosses. That drop bonus only applies to the 4 new crafting plans for amulets, shoulders, gloves, and bracers. You might get a Marquise gem plan from one of those bosses (I did, an emerald from Ghom), but they have no specially-better odds to drop them.
Vaeflare made both these points in a forum post, for the link or it didn’t happen. The big eight, to restate:
I didn’t ask why Demonic Essences are yellow when every other stackable crafting material in the game is light blue (color of the name when they drop), but it does seem odd. I also didn’t ask why they only stack to 100 when the other mats go to 1000, but I guess they’re more akin to jewels, which only stack to 100.
That said, here’s a cynical theory. Unless you’re really into crafting (and self found players are justifiably wild about the new crafting recipes) and have tons of gold to burn on that gamble, you’ll soon have DEs stacking up way beyond anything you can do with them. You can’t sell them on the AH, they only vendor for 25 gold, all the crafting recipes that use them cost a lot of gold and other mats, etc.
Basically, in a month (or less) Demonic Essences are going to seem like another useless rare item type which you’ll just leave on the ground when it drops. Thus yellow is the perfect color for them!
The best way to get the plans quickly is to buy them in the Auction House. They’re all for sale and none cost that much, certainly not compared to how much you’ll spend in dozens/hundreds of crafting rolls required to roll an upgrade. (And their prices are falling very rapidly. I’d actually argue they drop too commonly, compared to how hard it was to find crafting recipes during the first 8 months of Diablo 3.)
I stressed in the article yesterday that you shouldn’t buy now but should wait for prices to drop. Happily for my bank balance, most people didn’t take that advice and every new plan has been selling briskly. Though all of the plans are selling immediately, my biggest profit by far came from Emerald Marquise plans. I found one not long after the patch went live and it sold for 12m. I found a second hours later that night and it sold for 5m. I found a third the next morning and it sold for 2.1m. I’m no economist, but I bet you could plot those points on a graph measuring time/price, and get a textbook example of a supply and demand curve.
So, how do you find plans from monsters, rather than the Auction House? Kill the 8 special sub-bosses with MP turned up, and/or kill a lot of other monsters with as much MF as possible. I’ve found about half my new plans from regular bosses and even trash mobs, so it’s not at all just the Elite Eight that are worth farming. Those guys do have better odds though, and there are plenty of theories about the best runs.
Remember that you must have 5 stacks for their bonus odds to kick in, so you can’t just use the waypoints right by their levels and endlessly farm Zoltan Kulle and Ghom. That said, those two are conveniently located right near waypoints, so it’s not hard to start a game on their quest, stack up earlier in the act, then leap to them once you’re five’d.
If you want something more of a run, it’s easy enough to do an Act Three clear from Ghom on through. That’s what I’ve been doing since my TR Monk moves *very* quickly, and as I keep saying, Siegebreaker has been better to me, for new plans, than the other two. YMMV, of course.
Another good option is to take advantage of the fact that Nephalem Valor stacks now persist between acts, and continue on into Act Four. Cydaea is very near the end of Act 3 and Rakanoth is very near the start of Act 4, which makes those two the closest (chronologically) of any of the Elite Eight. (Plus lots of players are citing Iskatu (the purple right at the start of Act Four) as another great way to get plans, and I’ve found a few from him myself. Regardless of Blizzard’s insistence that only those Elite Eight have a plan drop bonus, many players feel other special purple sub-bosses have the same bonus, or at least a much higher chance than regular random Elites.
There are lots of other theories and first hand player reports in the big Patch v1.07 feedback thread in the forum, if you want additional ideas.
As for making the crafting recipes, all you can do there is cross your fingers. There’s no skill or any way to influence the results, though fashioning an empty can of Dr. Pepper into a small and sticky dark altar devoted to the capricious gods of RNG probably wouldn’t hurt. Various players on the B.net forums have been posting pics or reports of their superb crafting luck, but that’s not real informative in terms of how many tries it took them and how many players have crafted a dozens of rolls with no success to show for it.
Personally, I’ve done little crafting with no success. I rolled 12 of the Dex gloves and got 2 items that were almost decent, with maybe a 500k sale equivalence (if they hadn’t been BoA), but nothing I could consider using. Others have had more luck and/or persistence than I, and quite a few pics and reports have already been added to our new Crafted item showoff thread. Feel free to report your success or frustration and serve as an example and/or cautionary tale to others.