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Do you miss breakpoints?

Discussion in 'Diablo 3 General Discussion' started by Flux, Jul 28, 2013. | Replies: 31 | Views: 2913

  1. Flux

    Flux Administrator

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    Making a post in this other thread, I started thinking about what attributes do, and what else they might do (to make non-mainstats more attractive). And that led me to thinking about D2 stats like faster cast rate, blocking speed, and hit recovery, that all had breakpoints.

    If you didn't play D2, the issue was that the game was 2D and displayed things at a set speed of 25 frames per second, and thus events had to occupy a discrete number of frames. So you needed to get a certain amount of faster whatever for it to actually make a difference, and these bonuses always came with diminishing returns. For example, a sorceress' default casting speed was 13, and to cut off a frame she needed to add, 9, 20, 37, 63, 105, and 200 FCR to reach the max 7 frame casting speed. Thus you'd look at your build and if you were at 40 FCR, you knew you needed 23 more to make a difference, but that once you got to 63% you had to jump all the way to 105 to improve, thus there was no reason to tack on just another 20 or 30% at that point.

    There's an explanation and giant tables showing breakpoints for everything in the diablo 2 wiki.
    http://diablo2.diablowiki.net/Breakpoints

    We don't have breakpoints in 3D games like D3 since movements can just be sped up. Thus skills and item bonuses and such all just say "4% faster attack" or whatever. And that's what they do. You don't need math or breakpoints or whatever, and there's even a big green number to spur you on.

    That said, does anyone miss breakpoints? They were an artifact of 2D technology, but perhaps they were fun also? In D3 a lot of things are just "want moar." You want more ias, more mainstat, more cc, more cd, etc. And adding more does improve your performance, but breakpoints gave a sort of mini-goal to the equipment game. Instead of everything just making X slightly better in D3, what if you knew you needed 18% more IAS to make a clear difference? Every expert player in D2 planned their build to reach certain breakpoints, and we juggled gear extensively when we needed just 5% more FHR since that 5% would make a big difference.

    I can't see that ever coming back in D3, and I'm not really suggesting it. But I like the idea of mini-goals within the item game, and special small bonuses.

    So how about a hybrid system? Instead of breakpoints, what if every 10% more in X gave you a slightly bigger bonus, or some special bonus?
    • What if every 10% in CC added 5% to your CD?
    • What if every 100 in a resistance added 5 to your INT?
    • Or every 50% more Magic Find gave you +5 to your vit?
    • Or if every 50% in Critical hit Damage added 1% more CC?
    If you were sitting at 341% CD, you'd certainly put a bigger value on getting 9% more than you do now, eh?

    Obviously the examples above are just off the top of my head, but imagine this system throughout all the stats and figures. It would give you milestones to aim for and mini-rewards all over the place. Would this be fun? Would anyone care? Would it change anything? Would bliz be able to document it clearly enough for it to pass the "Bashiok's mom" test?
  2. yovargas

    yovargas IncGamers Member

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    No.


    10 char
  3. Steven Hazani

    Steven Hazani IncGamers Member

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    D3 does have breakpoints... but only on the "overpowered" skills, and not any others.
  4. Valeli

    Valeli IncGamers Member

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    Don't miss them.

    I have no idea how long I played D2 before I understood exactly how they worked, but it was quite some time. I don't know if they were necessary then for some obscure reason or another, but they're not necessary now. They never bothered me that much... but why have some hidden stat like that? I mean, D3's exclusive focus on two stats is a horrible "other extreme", but you don't need to riddle a game with hidden stuff like that just cause.

    As for mini goals, it doesn't seem all that different trying to get 15% (random number) faster attack speed now than it did then. Both are good goals to have. The only difference is now you can reasonably shoot for 13 or 15% as well, or go for 16 and get rewarded for nudging in one more.

    Just makes much more sense in every way.
  5. Lanthanide

    Lanthanide IncGamers Member

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    Yes, but only because it's a step back to Diablo 1, which had an item system that I think Diablo 3 is really missing.

    Having attack-speed breakpoints in D2 will have driven some people to look for particular items; eg you need to find some unique helm with 17% or better FCR, and it normally spawns with 12-19%, so this instantly narrows the range of the items that are useful, and significantly increases the value of a perfect roll. Or, you could juggle your items around: can only get your hands on 12% helm? Well maybe if you change your gloves from X to Y, and your chest armor from Y to Z, you can get the extra cast speed that you wanted, while having to sacrifice something.

    D1 of course had stat caps for the character classes: Warriors had 50 magic max, Sorcs had 45 strength max. This meant that as a Sorc, if you wanted to wear a FPM which required 90 str, you'd be forced to scavenge up +45 str from your gear. Ideally you'd get +20 str from your Zod rings/amulets, but there was a lot of flexibility there too: you could get an Obs/Titan amulet for +30 str and then get an Obs/Wiz ring for +30 magic. This optimization and trade-off was much more interesting (to me) in D1 than anything in D2, especially since you only had body armor, helm, shield, weapon, 2x rings + amulet to play with. In D2 with more item slots there wasn't as much optimization pressure, and with D3 there is even less (even if items still required stats to equip, which they don't).
  6. capnlarge

    capnlarge IncGamers Member

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    Break points are confusing. The fact that I played hours and hours of D2 and still had to refer to charts to know them, shows how bad they are. Items should give me the increase it says they do.
  7. Greizer

    Greizer IncGamers Member

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    I'm surprised this isn't mentioned more often. As said, breakpoints in D2 meant you had to 'juggle' the various pieces of gear for the best effect; you could rarely hit all the bps you wanted so you had to make trade-offs and compromises. In D3 there are no such decisions to be made. There's just... 'Get more of everything' (mostly crit/crit dmg...). Adding bps to D3 won't happen ofc because Blizz couldn't really 'sell' it to people at this öoint.
  8. ShadoutMapes

    ShadoutMapes IncGamers Member

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    Nope. I dont.

    Not like there arent points where different stats becomes better than others either, such as the interaction between armor, resist and vitality fluctuating in power depending on how much you have of each. Same for CC and CD of course, but for those more always feels like better, so it is kinda mindless.

    As for your hybrid system, I could see something like that in the 'fabled' Talisman. Giving bonuses depending on what stats you focused on, and how much you had of each.
    Since it would be an isolated system - apart from normal gear - it would probably be easier to keep consistent and clear to the player.
  9. Greizer

    Greizer IncGamers Member

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    Btw if you find breakpoints 'confusing', it's a wonder you haven't been hit by a car while crossing the road. Blizz really needs to stop catering to the 'grannies' out there and re-introduce a learning curve to their games. Confusion is not a thing to be feared but embraced; it's the first stage of learning a new systemor mechanic.
  10. yovargas

    yovargas IncGamers Member

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    There's "deep" and there's "complicated". Breakpoints were the latter, not the former.
  11. ShadoutMapes

    ShadoutMapes IncGamers Member

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    It depends.
    There is two types of complexity imo.

    A complex system that is complex because it is deep. It is simple when you look at it from the outside, but when you get into it it offers lots of depth.

    A complex system that is complex because it's broad. It looks complex from the outside, but when you get into it it offers no depth. It is designed to look complex rather than be complex.

    First is good, second is bad. Second is so much easier to design than the first of course :/

    Not arguing that breakpoints are one or the other (depends on the design), just that complexity for the sake of complexity isn't necessarily good.

    (Edit: TLDR: what Yovargas said already...)
  12. BryanM

    BryanM IncGamers Member

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    They're not. They're a product of apathy / an overwhelming desire for consistency.

    AttackSpeed = 6.05
    ASpeedCount = ASpeedCount + DemicalPart(AttackSpeed)
    If ASpeedCount >= 1: ASpeedCount = ASpeedCount - 1 // And then when the animation function is called, add +1 frame to it

    Like it's going to look terrible alternating between a .48 second attack and a .44 second attack...

    A simpler but more random method is just rolling a random number against the decimal part to tell if an animation is slower or not.
  13. Greizer

    Greizer IncGamers Member

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    Just document the feature properly. Then if you're confused about it I hope you all the best in the traffic lights. :)
  14. capnlarge

    capnlarge IncGamers Member

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    The fact that the game didn't even tell you there were breakpoints and that you had to reference sites like these to know them, tells you it is confusing. Without someone's hard work testing a 1% increase at a time and measuring how many shots they got off in a second, no one would have even known. A system in which things do not do what they say they do is not deep, it is confusing.

    Breakpoints were a result of graphic limitations, not a positive that needs to be brought back.
  15. Flux

    Flux Administrator

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    One thing Lanth mentions is that gear had to be planned out in previous games in the series. Well, not planned out necessarily, but you benefited from logical and rational and intelligent distribution of equipment properties. There's nothing of that in D3 where every single stat (except MF/GF and MS hard capped) is always better if it's moar. Any amount more = better. It's a very casual-friendly style, which requires no planning or deeper strategy to the item game, and I can certainly see the appeal in some ways, but it's clearly lacking in complexity.

    D1 and D2 had hard caps on lots of stuff, and breakpoints which worked in similar fashion. You needed to plan your dex or str for equipment requirements, you needed to plan your resistance and not waste it by going too high, and with breakpoints there was a big reward for knowing how the game worked and how many points in various things were good, better, or unnecessary.

    I don't miss breakpoints per se, but I do miss a lot of the complexity and subtlety of the item game in previous titles that's not seen in D3. One reason we all complain about D3 only valuing CC, CD, IAS, mainstat and RA is because there's no hard cap and very little diminishing returns on those. The more you have the more good they do for you, so there's no reason to try to get any other stats.

    The following is a thought experiment more than a feature request:

    Imagine if D3 had heavy diminishing returns on CC and CD above 40% and 400%, and RA above 400. You could push those figures higher, but the benefit was reduced considerably. Would that by default raise the value of other stats? Would players start to find more value in things like LoH, chance to stun, "reduces CC effect" mods, etc? Those mods aren't that great compared to another 40% CD or 8% IAS, etc. But if that 40% CD only gave you 6% more due to diminishing returns, other mods would become much more viable, and gear valuations would change considerably... ?
  16. mr punk

    mr punk IncGamers Member

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    i like to know what games you play comes with encyclopedic tool tips and manual. dark souls (a 3d game, BTW) never mentioned that resistance was generally useless nor dex can give faster casting speed at cetain breakpoints. players initally thought Blackheart was a god tier character in the early life cycle of Marvel v Capcom 2, but once they stated they play the game more. they discovered he was merely high to mid tier. the fact of the matter is designers don't completely know all the arcane details or what their game will do once it's in the wild and players begin to explore, exploit and break their games which can in turn extend the life cycle of some games.

    i wouldn't count on it and it's fairly common. the devs of DMC (unlike the devs of DmC3) admitted they couldn't figure out or perform high level game play, so they simplified the game because "it might confuse the noobs". however, unlike d3 players, DmC players stayed away from that in droves.
  17. nurman

    nurman IncGamers Member

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    On moves like Energy Twister the breakpoints do work, but on general moves like Cleave, the current system certainly works better.

    The old breakpoints & hard caps do, in a way give me a warm and fuzzy feeling, but then I recall how much metagaming was involved in gearing when I, for example, geared a lightning sorceress in D2.
  18. thefranklin

    thefranklin IncGamers Member

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    I miss breakpoints.

    FPA, FHR, FCR, FBR, Block Rate, Resists, Deadly Strike, Crushing Blow, Str / Dex for equipping (or Vit if going for max damage). All of these had minimums and maximums that (sort of) changed depending on what character and even what skills of that character changed. It was a much deeper system, although it still could be vastly improved. Energy was useless for most characters, and most characters performed optimal (in SC) with their stats just meeting equipment requirements. A few items were too good and most characters gravitated towards using them (grief, infinity somewhere, enigma) and that created a bit of stale feeling. Attack rating was not available in as many ways as there should have been. The secondary uses of the stats (damage for str, blocking/ar/ranged damage for dex, nothing for energy) could have definitely been improved to give the player a more compelling choice.

    For the people complaining about not knowing about the breakpoints, yes a way to view the stuff in-game would be welcome. But it also doesn't mean that the system is automatically bad if ya didn't figure it out. You could have noticed yourself that adding x amount of fcr didn't make you attack faster, but it still should have been included in a kind of tool-tip of some sort. That and the runewords/recipes you had to go look fore, but wouldn't you still take those in D3?

    For the breakpoints being complicated and not deep, well how are they complicated? You attack X fast with this range of speeds, if you exceed that range you attack Y% faster? The items and the skills and characters that use it are the part that made it deep. Planning a Wolfbarb is about the most fun thing you can do, it is just a shame that one phase blade runeword stands head and shoulders above everything else...
  19. Dogbert

    Dogbert IncGamers Member

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    It would be good if breakpoints returned.
  20. Clavdivs

    Clavdivs IncGamers Member

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    The God does miss the breakpoints, but for a different reason.

    The breakpoints did made diminished returns for key properties of character - IAS, FHR, FRW etc. The God declares that diminishing, or even linear advancement in CC% would benefit game greatly. The current system of adding percentages one over another not linear, and is a sign of mathematical weakness! This also applies to IAS%, once defined through breakpoints to the point where there is no practical use of massing more, to current non-linear and corrupted further by adding raw attacks/second system.

    [The God pauses a while to wonder]

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