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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.

hardrock

Trophies

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.

Threads

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

Likes

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

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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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Realms Down for Service: Now Back Online!

Posted 11 Dec 2012 by

Diablo 3 is currently down for maintenance and repair and improvement and stuff. Here’s the official notice:

We will be performing scheduled maintenance for Diablo III starting tomorrow (12/11) at 1:00 a.m. PST in order to deploy our 1.0.6a fastpatch. We anticipate that maintenance will conclude and that all services will be available by approximately 11:00 a.m. PST.

Important: Please note that you will not be prompted to download patch 1.0.6a until the patch is live in your home region. If you are logging in from a European or Asian client, you will need to wait for this patch to release in that region before it can be installed. Additionally, if your home region is the Americas, you will be unable to log into Europe or Asia using Global Play after patch 1.0.6a is live until those regions have also patched.

For reference, here are the scheduled maintenance times for each region:

The Americas: 1:00 a.m. PST to 11:00 a.m. PST
Asia: 12:00 p.m. PST to 2:00 p.m. PST
Europe: 8:00 p.m. PST to 10:00 p.m. PST

Some sort of maintenance/downtime happens every week so it’s not a biggie, except that this downtime is a bit longer than usual. I bring it up though, since the official server status page currently shows all the realms and Auction Houses Green Arrow Up. Americas is not, not for hours now, not due back online for 5 hours yet, and not as of my check in-game 2 minutes ago.

Maybe I’m the only one who ever views that page, and maybe it’s not actually hooked up to anything related to Battle.net, but it confuses me. I’ve noticed this during past patches too. So what’s the point in an official server status page that doesn’t actually reflect the current server status?

Bonus Blue reply to some QQing about the realm downtime.

Tuesday = Blizzard Christmas Party

So don’t expect any useful patches or updates this month, better luck next year.

Vaeflare: You would be incorrect about the festivities, but we can’t fault you for guessing!

We’re very much around (and will be around tomorrow, too), but we’re quite busy behind-the-scenes. We don’t have much new information to share at the moment, but the development team is currently working on some content updates for an upcoming patch, and we hope to share more details on that in the near future.

(Note: We’ll be releasing 1.0.6a tomorrow, but it’s just a fastpatch, not a content patch. Sometimes certain issues can’t be hotfixed, so we’ll need a full patch to address them.)

Lylirra: Knock off the trolling, folks (this includes posting in all caps, calling people “idiots,” etc). I can understand why you might be frustrated about tomorrow’s downtime and I can certainly empathize since it’s not an ideal situation, but that doesn’t mean it’s okay to be rude or uncivil to other posters.

Also, since so many of you insist tomorrow is our Christmas party (it isn’t), sounds like I’ll have to decorate appropriately. And potentially wear an awful holiday sweater. With lights. Oh, and one of those horrible appliques of Rudolph or one of the lesser-known reindeer. Yes.

then why did you name the previous patch as 1.0.6 since it was the patch just like this one?
Lylirra: Because it contained a lot of the architecture and data needed to begin our Battle.net functionality testing: http://us.battle.net/d3/en/blog/7924401/

I believe the patch was something like 8 MBs. Not exactly small (though a lot of the content wasn’t visible to players, to be fair).

Xmas party jokes aside, the OP of this thread has a point. December 11th and not a word yet about PvP, which was time and again promised for this year, and probably just a few months after launch this year. Alas.


Update: The Americas realm is back online at noon-thirty. Good hunting.

I played one quick DiabloWikiAlkaizer run and immediately found an embarrassingly useless Legendary about 10 feet from the Korsikk Bridge waypoint, so clearly things are back to normal, or perhaps even better! Keep that in mind when the inevitable, “I played 17 hours with 850% MF on MP17 and didn’t find a single key!” posts attract weary Blue replies on B.net.


Tagged As: | Categories: Battle.net, Blue Posts, Hardware & Tech, Lylirra, Vaeflare