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The State of the Monk: Additional follower or future OP class?

state of the monk in diablo 3It’s no surprise that the Monk class has been in need of some love pre 2.1. However with the second iteration of the patch on the PTR that need has not yet been abided. People are still clamoring for more sweeping changes(pun intended).

I was a heavy Monk user pre ROS and took a break with the xpac to delve into my first love(WD) and my new fling(crusader). I returned to the Monk only a few weeks ago and what I found was a shell of what I had left. After suffering for a long time as a WD it was nice when they finally rose to prominence. After a while on the top I wanted a new challenge and set my sights back on my monk, however even this challenge seems to daunting then all that time as a struggling WD. Diablo Forum MVP Druin put together an eloquent look at the myriad issues facing the class:


Hello everyone!

I am back from vacation and I am looking to write up a concise review of where we stand in 2.1.

My plan is to give a quick overview of our major issues then discuss the 2.1 changes and how they affect the various facets of our class.

I will be using this thread to fine-tune what we want to communicate to the devs and then I will make a major “state of monks in 2.1″ thread on the PTR forums to attempt to get some help for our lovely class! :D

1. Current Monk Issues

Damage

This is really at the forefront of the monk issues.

Since the release of RoS, monks have been having a tough time with DPS. We have a very limited range of options mostly centering around the skill Exploding Palm. (Un)fortunately EP is being changed as it breaks greater rifts (along with Rimeheart and Furnace) so our only source of widely competitive damage is going away. This leaves monks in a pretty bad spot.

Our spenders do very little damage (I mean VERY little) relative to their cost and our generators are used more as proc-vehicles for Odyn Son, Thunderfury, Shard of Hate and Rime/Furnace more than as sources of damage themselves. This leaves us with our 6pc Raiment of 1000 Storms which makes DS proc a 3000% weapon damage attack on cast. 3000% damage is a lot and it scales with lightning damage gear but DS has a flat-immutable 6 second cooldown. This can be mitigated to some extent by using Jawbreaker to give “free” dashing strike charges but that interaction is quite clunky.

Basically, monks will be forced into a clunky, hard-to-use situationally terrible Storm-breaker set in order to compete with other classes in damage. If they don’t want to use this mechanic, they will do very poor damage.

Durability

Next on the list is our ability to survive. This is a more controversial topic with some finding survival to be quite easy and many others finding it to be quite hard. In 2.1 with the change from dex giving dodge to dex giving armor and the change from OWE to Harmony, many monks who had minor synergy with OWE will see a minor tankiness boost. (my Raiment set for example)
On the other hand, monk who are deeply invested into OWE will see a major tankiness loss. (my Shatter-palm set). In either case, both types of monks probably have a lot of trouble living in T6 without 2x Unity or the constant dashing from Storm-breaker. Why is this? Because monks have to face-tank so much stuff.

Our primary source of resource generation comes from skills that require you to be up-close and personal with mobs which means a lot of damage can’t be avoided. To compensate for this, end-game monks are forced to take defensive passives (Harmony) defensive skills (Epiphany-shroud / Serenity / Inner Sanc / Blinding Flash) and CDR in basically every single spec. This is extremely limiting to the monk playstyle though arguably less of a problem than the DPS as the defensive skill/CDR solution does exist.

Additionally, sustain is nearly non-existent. LoH requires primary affixes which takes away from our already terrible DPS, LPS is the same, LPSS both takes primary affixes AND is extremely poor and Globes took a pretty big hit in 2.1. Monks actually have access to healing skills but, for some reason, they are tuned to be SO weak that they are essentially non-existent.

Resource Management

This is a more fundamental problem than the other two issues. Mere number tweaks would likely not result in this issue being resolved.

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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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Latest Diablo 3 News

Blizzard Explains the Big “Life On Hit” Changes


Posted 15 Jul 2014 by at 22:53 GMT

The DiabloWikiLife per Hit affix is changing in function in Patch 2.1, especially with how it works through channeled skills and DiabloWikiAoE attacks. Happily, there’s a new blue post in which Blizzard Explains the Big Life On Hit Changes:

Life on Hit has undergone a number of changes, and it can be little confusing at first. I’ll go over how LoH is currently working on the PTR, but it’s also good to keep in mind that it’s still subject to tuning.

The bullet-point basics:

  • You gain your Life on Hit amount per cast, so long as you’re doing damage.
  • The amount healed per cast does not change based on the number of targets hit.
  • You continuously gain a portion of your Life on Hit value while channeling.
  • We’re increasing LoH on items by another 100%, and LoH in Paragon by 50% in an upcoming PTR build
  • We’re aware that this needs tuning, particularly with large packs of monsters, or those with Reflect Damage.
  • More long-form explanation:

    Currently in the live game, you’ll receive Life On Hit when an ability hits an enemy, and then that mechanic is run through the proc coefficient of the ability itself. As a general rule, this means that many AoE skills give very small amounts of Life On Hit vs. single targets, and you typically get large amounts of Life on Hit against multiple targets.

    We want players to be able to heal consistently at the times you need it most: Boss fights and Elite fights. To support this, we’re altering some of the conditions of Life On Hit. Life On Hit will now trigger once per ability activation as long as that ability requires an animation*. This means casting Magic Missile, Frozen Orb, and Blizzard all provide the same Life On Hit per cast. Channeled spells provide an equivalent amount of healing over any given period of time to non-channeled spells.

    Not only does this allow you to gain more Life when you’re attacking a low number of targets with AoE skills, it provides more consistent healing between various skills, and it also separates Life On Hit from the proc system. This last benefit is important as it means we can be more generous with allowing Legendary items to proc various effects.

    All of that said, there is still some tuning to do now that we’ve adjusted how Life on Hit works. We’ll be keeping an eye a close eye on it, and continue to make the necessary adjustments to get it in line with where we want.

    *Attacks that deal damage, but don’t animate (like Overpower, or Frost Nova) do not trigger Life on Hit. The intention is to prevent double LoH procs per animation cycle since these skills can be cast while attacking, or channeling.

    The long form explanation sounds good; more consistent value from the affix rather than “always full health” against large groups and “never enough health” against a single target. Plus, if removing it from the procs system can allow legendary properties to kick in more often, that’s a nice change. I’m sure there are some drawbacks as well… right?

    Tagged As: | Categories: Blue Posts, Grimiku, Items | 34 Comments

    Latest Diablo 3 News

    Vote: Is Hardcore Diablo 3 Taking Over?


    Posted 15 Jul 2014 by at 12:13 GMT

    diablo-hardcoreA couple of blue replies to issues I’ve noticed in my own conversations about the game, as it seems like more players are making the move to Hardcore, full time or at least part time, and lots more are considering doing so in the first Ladder Season, when they’ll be able to start fresh at the same time as everyone else.

    What is the toughest class to play on HC. My friend leveled a WD and found it too easy. He wants a challenge. What should I dare him with?
    Araxom: My DHs would agree. Although the Wizard is another vulnerable class, my own Demon Hunters sometimes suffered from not dishing out as much damage as was needed when they were locked down in close quarters. I’m looking forward to leveling a new Hunter as soon as 2.1 drops.

    It seems more and more players are switching to HC mode. I remembered when at ROS launch most of the HC players are stuck at playing normal to master difficulties. Nowadays, more and more hc players are playing T4-T6. HC mode is the end game. Yeah, DC, PK, and lags can kill your characters but eventually it adds to excitement. It makes you aware that you need to balance dps against your toughness. It makes you care about your character. I noticed that hc players are more cooperative and helpful to other hc players.

    That feeling when a friend/clan member dies, and almost everyone will type “RIP” at clan or party chat, at SC when a player dies, u see them typing “*#@& Noob”

    That heart pounding feeling when you have less HP and the screen turns to red.

    Recently my friends quit playing SC mode and turns to HC and never looked back. They are having a blast.

    The only part that ruins it is a lot of people think that because they play hardcore, they’re better than everyone else.
    Araxom: I associate mostly with HC, but I appreciate SC. I think they’re almost two completely different games; being able to put yourself in the midst of the danger without the repercussion of permanent death allows for experimentation in ways that are just not nearly as feasible in HC mode. While in HC, I don’t consider myself to be taking it easy, but I’m also not vaulting into the fog of war. I think what I enjoy most is the impermanence of HC mode is that feeling that this battle could be my last.

    We Hardcore players sometimes joke about being elitists, but at the same time… if “never dying” isn’t evidence/proof that you actually *are* a better player, what is? Obviously there are some very skilled non-HC players, but it’s much easier to gear up when you can make mistakes or Zerg content that’s over your head. And while not all the best players are Hardcore, it seems like all the worst must be Softcore, for fairly obvious reasons.

    That said, the Blue has a point, and it’s not just a way to deflect the “HC elitist” question (though it was that as well). With the complete lack of death penalties in Diablo 3, HC and SC are functionally different games. Players not in Hardcore can choose to value toughness and play defensively and carefully… but frankly, that’s a suboptimal strategy. The game doesn’t punish you for dying, it rewards you greatly for pushing into higher difficulty levels, and when there’s a problem, higher DPS is almost always the solution.

    Survey time! Is Hardcore Diablo 3 taking over?

    Have you played Hardcore in Diablo 3?

    View Results

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    Latest Diablo 3 News

    Why Are Depth Diggers Dead for Witch Doctors and Wizards


    Posted 15 Jul 2014 by at 02:59 GMT

    The version of Patch 2.1 on the PTR now has a big buff to the legendary pants Depth Diggers. The patch notes from June 26th described it thusly:

    DiabloWikiDepth Diggers

    • Legendary Power added
    • All resource generators deal 80-100% more damage

    All was joyous for two weeks, until the last patch notes on July 11th employed takesies-backsies.

    DiabloWikiDepth Diggers

  • The damage bonus provided by this item’s Legendary Power no longer includes Witch Doctor and Wizard Signature Spells
  • Naturally fans wanted to know Why Are Depth Diggers Dead for Witch Doctors and Wizards?

    The damage bonus provided by this item’s Legendary Power no longer includes Witch Doctor and Wizard Signature Spells…

    To the dev team, simple question, WHY???

    Blizz, One of the few item changes the players are excited about is the Depth Diggers’ new power… Are you keep on nerfing what is fun?


    Grimiku: The philosophy behind the decision to prevent the bonus damage given by Depth Diggers from working with Witch Doctor and Wizard Signature spells was two-fold.

  • First, Signature skills are not the same as resource generators, and typically have higher damage. Even with Prodigy and APOC, it doesn’t change the fact that, at their core, Signature skills do not generate resource. At present, Depth Diggers are only intended to benefit/boost resource generators, which does restrict their value to Barbarian, Crusader, Demon Hunter, and Monk skills.
  • Second and more importantly, we don’t want to create an environment where Wizards and Witch Doctors are driven to only cast Signature skills because of a single item. Wizards and Witch Doctors also happen to already have items that make some of their Signature skills incredibly powerful (DiabloWikiMirrorball and Rhen’ho Flayer, for example), and there’s a risk that with Depth Diggers this could funnel gameplay into something that’s very one-dimensional. Ideally, we want your skill usage to be thoughtful and engaging, at least more so than just holding down left-click until an Elite pack or Rift Guardian dies.
  • That said, we are more than happy to hear your feedback about the changes we’re making, and we encourage you to continue to do so. If you feel that Depth Diggers should benefit Signature skills, be sure to let us know how and why (these are two very important pieces of information).

    Thanks to those of you who’ve posted thus far!

    The Blue’s points are valid, but that doesn’t mean you have to agree with them. Yes, across the board the resource generators are weaker than the Wiz and WD’s signature skils, but there are legendary items that make various resource generators much more powerful… though probably not to the extent of Mirrorball or Rhen’ho Flayer. But Depth Diggers granting that bonus to Wiz and WD would potentially open up some new builds, or at least new emphasis to builds with various currently underpowered/underused skills turning into much more viable options.

    It might be more fair to create specific exceptions that would be OP, such as Depth Diggers and Mirrorball not working on the same character, but that would seem pretty cheesy and overly-specific? What do you guys think?


    Latest Diablo 3 News

    4

    Blizzard Intern Art Teases a Diablo 3 Druid


    Posted 15 Jul 2014 by at 01:55 GMT

    It’s always great when new art appears and David Ko, who was a Blizzard intern, posted some of his creations which are interesting in that he was busy creating images for a Diablo 3 Druid class this year.

    These images are of course not official in any way but his visions of a somewhat more beefy looking Druid compared to the Diablo 2 Druid are excellent.

    David also created images for the Crusader and Barbarian so he was creating art for classes that have already appeared in the game.

    There are also a couple of building picture for a Forge which are also great looking.

    You can check out all David’s Diablo 3 art on his blog, and remember, these are not official. Still, a Druid in Diablo 3 would be an interesting idea.

    Thanks Fmulder


    Latest Diablo 3 News

    8

    See how Diablo 3′s character art is being censored in China


    Posted 15 Jul 2014 by at 01:30 GMT

    It’s common for games to be tweaked for the Chinese market and Diablo 3 is no exception so it comes as now surprise now that Diablo 3 is being released in China there will be changes. Chinese site Sina.com has done some digging and put together images which show how things will be changed.

    As Chinese gamers will have expected, much of the gore has been removed. Features such as bones, blood and even stitches on some of the mobs are no more. The removal of some of the art detail has been undertaken by Netease, the Chinese operator of Diablo 3 to fit in-line with their policies to make sure the game is approved for sale by the Chinese government. This will be more of precaution if anything else so the game sails through the approval process preventing any delays in release.

    Below is an image of some of the changes and Sina.com have a few more too which you may want to check out.

    diablo 3

    Update: I had to add Ghom with pants. Because pants!

    ghom-chinese ghom-pants-chinese

    Tagged As: | Categories: Artwork, Controversy | 8 Comments

    Latest Diablo 3 News

    1

    Witch Doctor Fetish Sycophant bug fix before 2.1 release


    Posted 14 Jul 2014 by at 20:54 GMT

    Blizzard are aware of the Witch Doctor Fetish Sycophant bug replacing the Fetish Army and although there is no exact date on a fix, one will be coming before the final 2.1 live push.

    For anyone who may be unaware, there is a bug with the Witch Doctor Fetish Sycophant summons from the passive replacing fetishes spawned from Fetish Army. We’re still working on a solution for that issue, but it hasn’t been implemented yet. It’s currently on target to be fixed before 2.1 reaches live, though.

    In addition to that, I have some more news about fetishes that some of you Witch Doctors will be glad to hear. Wyatt Cheng mentioned in the Theorycraft Thursday livestream that we’re also planning on adding two fetish counters, so that there is one for your Fetish Army and another for Fetish Sycophants.

    We don’t have a current ETA on when these will be implemented to the PTR, and as for the usual caveat, it could possibly be changed, especially since it’s still in development.

    Update: Additional Blue post on this issue:

    Yay, they are adding fetish counters. And also fixing the annoying bug with FA and FS.
    Araxom: Glad to see the response is well received.

    A big thanks to our PTR testers, too! For those of you who have not yet given the PTR a shot, please consider doing so! We’re actively compiling the information that players are sharing with us in the PTR Feedback forum and every bit helps.


    Latest Diablo 3 News

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


    Posted 14 Jul 2014 by at 16:27 GMT

    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.

    Tagged As: | Categories: *Featured, Forums, Site News | 10 Comments

    Latest Diablo 3 News

    Diablo 3 Podcast #144: PTR, Greater Rifts, and Legendary Gems


    Posted 14 Jul 2014 by at 11:40 GMT

    Diablo 3 Patch 2.1 is up on the PTR and bristling with new features. Flux is joined by first time podcast guests N3rdwards and Empty1 to discuss Greater Rifts, Legendary Gems, Death Penalties, and go in depth into the Wizard class.

    Approximate segment times:

  • 0:20 — Intro to N3rdwards and Empty1. Both first time podcast guests talk about their Diablo gaming experiences and why their opinions matter.
  • 4:00 — N3rdwards explains why Wizards are not overpowered, an opinion now accepted but which was controversial a couple of months ago. Empty1 agrees, and they go into an in depth discussion of Wizard problems above Torment 4.
  • 11:00 — Many classes/builds are fun up to T1 or T2, but there are very few viable builds at Torment 6 and L25+ Greater Rifts. Can the game be balanced to offer more high end variety?
  • 19:00 — Greater Rifts on the PTR. Early impressions, though bugs and exploits are skewing the picture.
  • 23:00 — Legendary Gems, how they work, how they are upgraded, and why not allow them to socket in weapons also?
  • 25:30 — Death penalty in Diablo 3 is all (Hardcore) or nothing (Softcore). Would the game be improved by a death penalty that was impactful? Would players appreciate having to balance offensive and defense and play responsibly, rather than the difficulty system offering heavy incentives to Zerg through content that’s way over a character’s head? How about Survival Bonuses?
  • 37:20 — Other class issues. Monk needs buffs and will really miss Tempest Rush + Epiphany which is being nerfed in Patch 2.1. Witch Doctors are OP, but so should be all the classes.

  • The Diablo 3 Podcast Episode Guide in DiabloWiki.net provides links to every show, plus short content summaries.


    Latest Diablo 3 News

    7

    China gets Diablo 3 release with own servers


    Posted 14 Jul 2014 by at 06:20 GMT
    Diablo 3 china teaser

    Teasing

    After some teasing over the weekend. Blizzard in China revealed that Diablo 3 was coming to China and they will have their very own servers.

    The reveal was teased with a series of images over on the Chinese site (see right) and the  announcement was finally accompanied by a special trailer.

    Thanks Saintmek for posting and Cloud Liu for mailing it in.

    Tagged As: | Categories: Diablo 3 | 7 Comments

    Latest Diablo 3 News

    Diablo 3 Greater rifts exploited again on PTR


    Posted 12 Jul 2014 by at 15:57 GMT

    Only a few days after the latest PTR patch the leaderboards are yet again showing players completing greater rift level 100. This time the culprit is not DiabloWiki Exploding Palm but a combination of legendary gems, player sacrifice, and pets.

    I am one of the people that completed a greater rift level 100. Here is how you do it: You use a wd or DH and kill the pets over and over at the front door, death zerging all the way.

    When you get the rift guardian you apply a dot with the distance gem that increases damage and teleport to town killing the rift guardian instantly.

    Kpoplopster also was nice enough to not only explain but provide a video as well:

    Obviously this strategy isn’t going to work on Hardcore but it’s interesting to see the inventive ways players have found for hitting the top echelon of Greater rifts. As with any thing on the PTR take it with a grain of salt as it will soon be remedied but for now take advantage of the 1.6 billion gold drops!

    Tagged As: | Categories: Diablo 3, End Game, Game Features, Greater Rifts | 12 Comments

    Latest Diablo 3 News

    5

    Kadala Gamble Bugs and Demonic Organs All Round!


    Posted 12 Jul 2014 by at 02:50 GMT

    There have been a couple of bugs reported with the blood shard merchant, Kadala. One is on the Live servers and one has materialised on the PTR server. Blizzard are aware of both and obviously plan to fix. Grimiku explains.

    kadala bug

    Gambling Off-Class

    For the most part, and with only one very small exception, we intend for Kadala to continue to work like she currently does on live. What that specifically means is that is all Legendary items obtained from Kadala will continue to be tailored for the character purchasing them so long as it’s something that character can equip. That is, all loot purchased from Kadala should be 100% smart loot.

    The only exception to the above rule comes into play when a character is purchasing an item from Kadala that they cannot equip (like a Barbarian purchasing a Mojo or Source, for example). In those situations it will be possible for the player to obtain a Legendary item that is not tailored for their current hero.

    Examples can help in this case, so here are a few to help illustrate what’s up.

    A Barbarian starts spending Blood Shards on a Mystery Mojo, and the game decides that one of those Mojos is a Legendary. Currently on live, that Barbarian loses their Blood Shards, and actually gets no item, because Kadala is bugged in way that keeps her from ever giving a player a Legendary if the item is something they can’t equip. We’re working to fix this issue for patch 2.1.0 so that the Barbarian can successfully purchase a Legendary Mojo (if he or she wishes).

    Let’s say the same Barbarian purchases Mystery Shoulders from Kadala, and the game decides they should part of a set. Those shoulders should be something the Barbarian can actually use, like Raekor’s Burden, Spires of the Earth, or Burden of the Invoker. They should not be part of a set that belongs to another class, like Firebird’s or Zunimassa’s. Right now on the PTR, however, there’s a bug that’s causing players to receive off-class items when they shouldn’t be.

    It’s convenient to be able to gamble class-specific items for other classes you have, as illustrated in the top example, but obviously when it comes to set pieces DiabloWikiKadala has no way of knowing that it’s for another class, so the smart loot mechanic has to apply. It would be useful if you could select a check box to indicate you’re gambling for only the class you’re currently using, or 1 or more additional classes.

    The second blue post of note today is that there is going to be a change to the DiabloWikiDemonic Organ drops. The drop rate will not be altered but in multiplayer games instead of everyone having individual chances of an organ dropping (current situation) it will be group-wide. If an organ drops all members of the party will receive one. This change is live the PTR server just now. As magic find has no effect on the drop rate it seems the most logical (and fair) way to handle this.

    Again, Grimiku, explains this one:

    Currently, in the live game, when an DiabloWikiUbers boss is killed, every player has an individual chance (scaled based on difficulty) to get a Demonic Organ drop. This functionality has its pros, but a big con is that is can feel awkward to have one person in the group receive an organ and others not. It creates a kind of disparity within the group that we’d like to avoid. As a result, moving forward, the chance for a Demonic Organ to drop is now on the group, rather than the individual player. Basically, if a Demonic Organ drops, every member of the party will receive it.

    This does not influence the drop rate (and the rate will continue to scale in the same way with difficulty), but it will make sure that groups that stick together will all be on the same page for what’s needed to complete a Hellfire Ring or Amulet.

    Tagged As: , | Categories: Diablo 3 PTR, Diablo III Bugs | 5 Comments

    Latest Diablo 3 News

    5

    PTR Diablo 3 Patch 2.1 Notes Updated


    Posted 11 Jul 2014 by at 09:51 GMT

    With the PTR reset the PTR Diablo 3 Patch 2.1 Notes Updated with many changes and new features. It’s easiest to view the skill changes via the handy before/after comparison tables Rush posted yesterday, but there’s a lot of other new stuff worth noting.

    ptr-splashThe following are the important changes/additions made in the new patch.

    PTR-ONLY CHANGES

    Greater Rifts
    * The Greater Rift difficulty curve has been adjusted

    Items

    Depth Diggers
    * The damage bonus provided by this item’s Legendary Power no longer includes Witch Doctor and Wizard Signature Spells

    Madstone
    * The Exploding Palm applied by this item will now use the Skill Rune you’re currently using
    * Fulminating Onslaught will now only apply Exploding Palm to the primary target of each strike

    Ramaladni’s Gift
    * Bug Fixes
    * Players will now properly be prompted with a confirmation dialog before using Ramalandi’s Gift

    User Interface
    * Greater Rifts now have a unique icon that displays when a Greater Rift is open or when a player is inside a Greater Rift
    * Greater Rift completion times should now always be broadcast to your chat window

    Bug Fixes
    * Fixed an issue that prevented players from changing the difficulty of a game after a Greater Rift had been completed
    * Fixed an issue that was causing monsters in Greater Rifts to grant more Experience than intended
    * Player pets no longer improperly gain bonuses based on the difficulty of a Greater Rift
    * Fixed an issue preventing players from upgrading Legendary gems located in their Stash

    Life on Hit is no longer affected by proc coefficients and will now only be triggered once per attack, as long as that attack dealt damage
    * Channeled attacks will provide an amount of healing over any given period of time that is equivalent to a non-channeled attack

    ITEMS

    Legendary Gems have been added
    * Legendary gems can only be dropped by Greater Rift Guardians
    * Legendary Gems are account-bound and can only be socketed into Rings and Amulets
    ** Known Issue: Legendary Gems can currently be socketed into items they are not intended for
    * Legendary Gems can be upgraded by speaking with Urshi (a new NPC) inside a Greater Rift
    ** Urshi will only appear after a player’s Greater Rift journey has ended (i.e. after the Rift timer has expired) and the Rift Guardian in the current level has been defeated
    ** Upgrading a Legendary Gem to the next rank has higher chance of success and a higher chance of granting multiple ranks based on the Greater Rift level you reach (the higher Greater Rift level, the higher chance of success/multiple ranks)
    ** The only requirement to upgrade a Legendary Gem is the gem itself; there is no other cost associated with upgrading
    ** Each Legendary Gem has a property listed in blue that will be upgraded each time the gem’s rank increases
    ** Each Legendary Gem has a secondary power that will be unlocked when it reaches Rank 50
    ** Players will not receive a duplicate of any Legendary Gem the character they’re currently playing has access to
    ** This includes Legendary Gems in the character’s inventory, its followers’s inventories, or the Shared Stash, as well as Legendary Gems socketed in items in those locations

    Mad Monarch’s Scepter
    * Now counts assists in addition to kills

    Item Bug Fixes

    Legendary items that directly deal damage should now all properly benefit from the appropriate +% Elemental Damage item affix, including:
    * Blackfeather – +%Physical Damage
    * Bul-Kathos’s Oath (2) Set Bonus – +%Physical Damage
    * Cinder Switch – +%Fire Damage
    * Death’s Bargain – +%Physical Damage
    * Death Watch Mantle – +%Physical Damage
    * Fulminator – +%Lightning Damage
    * Odyn Son – +%Lightning Damage
    * Maximus – +%Fire Damage
    * Moonlight Ward – +%Arcane Damage
    * Schaefer’s Hammer – +%Lightning Damage
    * Scourge – +%Fire Damage
    * Shenlong’s Spirit (2) Set Bonus – +%Fire Damage
    * Stalgard’s Decimator – +%Physical Damage
    * Storm Crow – +%Fire Damage
    * Thunderfury – +%Lightning Damage

    Fixed an issue that caused Nemesis Bracers to only spawn Fallen Champions when used inside Nephalem Rifts

    Fixed an issue that prevented players from purchasing class-specific Legendary items for other classes from Kadala

    * A new option has been added to display an icon that indicates an item’s rarity
    * A new minimap icon has been added for Set items
    * A new matchmaking tag has been added for Greater Rifts

    That last change to gambling created some knotted knickers on the forum, and got additional explanation from Blue.


    Latest Diablo 3 News

    The State of the Monk: Additional follower or future OP class?


    Posted 10 Jul 2014 by at 20:11 GMT

    state of the monk in diablo 3It’s no surprise that the Monk class has been in need of some love pre 2.1. However with the second iteration of the patch on the PTR that need has not yet been abided. People are still clamoring for more sweeping changes(pun intended).

    I was a heavy Monk user pre ROS and took a break with the xpac to delve into my first love(WD) and my new fling(crusader). I returned to the Monk only a few weeks ago and what I found was a shell of what I had left. After suffering for a long time as a WD it was nice when they finally rose to prominence. After a while on the top I wanted a new challenge and set my sights back on my monk, however even this challenge seems to daunting then all that time as a struggling WD. Diablo Forum MVP Druin put together an eloquent look at the myriad issues facing the class:

    Hello everyone!

    I am back from vacation and I am looking to write up a concise review of where we stand in 2.1.

    My plan is to give a quick overview of our major issues then discuss the 2.1 changes and how they affect the various facets of our class.

    I will be using this thread to fine-tune what we want to communicate to the devs and then I will make a major “state of monks in 2.1″ thread on the PTR forums to attempt to get some help for our lovely class! :D

    1. Current Monk Issues

    Damage

    This is really at the forefront of the monk issues.

    Since the release of RoS, monks have been having a tough time with DPS. We have a very limited range of options mostly centering around the skill Exploding Palm. (Un)fortunately EP is being changed as it breaks greater rifts (along with Rimeheart and Furnace) so our only source of widely competitive damage is going away. This leaves monks in a pretty bad spot.

    Our spenders do very little damage (I mean VERY little) relative to their cost and our generators are used more as proc-vehicles for Odyn Son, Thunderfury, Shard of Hate and Rime/Furnace more than as sources of damage themselves. This leaves us with our 6pc Raiment of 1000 Storms which makes DS proc a 3000% weapon damage attack on cast. 3000% damage is a lot and it scales with lightning damage gear but DS has a flat-immutable 6 second cooldown. This can be mitigated to some extent by using Jawbreaker to give “free” dashing strike charges but that interaction is quite clunky.

    Basically, monks will be forced into a clunky, hard-to-use situationally terrible Storm-breaker set in order to compete with other classes in damage. If they don’t want to use this mechanic, they will do very poor damage.

    Durability

    Next on the list is our ability to survive. This is a more controversial topic with some finding survival to be quite easy and many others finding it to be quite hard. In 2.1 with the change from dex giving dodge to dex giving armor and the change from OWE to Harmony, many monks who had minor synergy with OWE will see a minor tankiness boost. (my Raiment set for example)
    On the other hand, monk who are deeply invested into OWE will see a major tankiness loss. (my Shatter-palm set). In either case, both types of monks probably have a lot of trouble living in T6 without 2x Unity or the constant dashing from Storm-breaker. Why is this? Because monks have to face-tank so much stuff.

    Our primary source of resource generation comes from skills that require you to be up-close and personal with mobs which means a lot of damage can’t be avoided. To compensate for this, end-game monks are forced to take defensive passives (Harmony) defensive skills (Epiphany-shroud / Serenity / Inner Sanc / Blinding Flash) and CDR in basically every single spec. This is extremely limiting to the monk playstyle though arguably less of a problem than the DPS as the defensive skill/CDR solution does exist.

    Additionally, sustain is nearly non-existent. LoH requires primary affixes which takes away from our already terrible DPS, LPS is the same, LPSS both takes primary affixes AND is extremely poor and Globes took a pretty big hit in 2.1. Monks actually have access to healing skills but, for some reason, they are tuned to be SO weak that they are essentially non-existent.

    Resource Management

    This is a more fundamental problem than the other two issues. Mere number tweaks would likely not result in this issue being resolved.

    Tagged As: | Categories: *Featured, Diablo 3, Diablo 3 PTR, Monk | 14 Comments

    Latest Diablo 3 News

    Legendary Gems are Bugged and Disabled on PTR


    Posted 10 Jul 2014 by at 14:03 GMT

    Legendary gems are dropping on the PTR, with special powers that can only be enabled by feeding them to the special artisan who appears when you fail to complete a Greater Rift, but as is often the case with a new game thingie, there are bugs. Enough bugs that Blizzard has turned them off, for the time being.

    We’ve recently discovered an issue with Legendary Gems that is causing PTR clients to crash whenever a gem power is activated.

    We’re working to resolve this crash as quickly as possible, but do not currently have an ETA to share. In the meantime, to help improve PTR stability and prevent further crashes, all Legendary Gem powers have been temporarily disabled. Please note that Legendary Gems can still drop on the PTR, but they will not provide any of the bonuses listed on their tooltips.

    Once Legendary Gem powers have been re-enabled, we’ll provide an update in this thread. Thank you for your patience!

    Remember that legendary gems only work in rings and amulets, so you could have, at most, three of them on a character. Also, implementing them is going to take some changes to gear, since hardly anyone has a top quality ring/amulet now with a socket in it, simply because in the live game, there are many affixes on jewelry that provide a much bigger boost than a socket. I’ve heard from players on Live who are trying to farm up legendary jewelry with sockets, or considering which current top end affixes are best to sacrifice to add a socket via enchanting.

    Before the gems were turned off, some players found enough to report some results. Here’s a quote from the best post I’ve seen on them, via the B.net PTR bug report forum.

    Moratorium (Gem of Staggered Damage):
    When wearing an immunity amulet, damage you should be immune to is added as staggered damage.

    If you have an immunity amulet (tested with Countess Julia’s Cameo on a Demon Hunter), the staggered damage accumulates even though you are technically gaining life and not taking damage. So standing in an arcane beam to heal will do so properly, but the Gem will cause you to accumulate the damage you would have as though you didn’t have immunity to it, and will then proceed to damage you over the several seconds the gem’s proc lasts.

    legendary-gem-ptr01Bane of the Powerful (Gem of Damage After Elite Pack):
    Does not trigger proc if your pet gets the killing blow.

    The bonus does not trigger at all if your pet delivers the killing blow. On Demon Hunter, this happened both from Companion and Sentry buffed with the full 6-piece Marauder set bonuses. If my character personally dealt the killing blow, the bonus would trigger properly and the buff icon would appear. I checked my character sheet to see if it was simply a buff icon bug but my damage remained the same unless I dealt the killing blow.

    Taeguk (Gem of Increased Damage after Spending Resource),
    Gem of Efficacious Toxin(Gem of Poison DoT Debuff),
    Wreath of Lightning(Gem of Mini-Conduit):

    Gems simply stopped functioning at all.

    Taeguk worked as intended on my Demon Hunter for about one full rift. I believe I was disconnected, and when I logged back in the gem no longer functioned at all. Unsocketing and resocketing the gem didn’t fix the problem, nor did changing my hatred spenders. Other gems seem to be doing this as I post this, specifically the Poison and Conduit gems. I’m guessing this was just a hotfix issue which temporarily disabled these, but I thought at the time they may have stopped working due to being unsocketed and then resocketed in gear (meaning unsocketing would permanently “break” a gem). I am unsure if the previous two bugs and the following one are related to this one, though at least for the latter it seems likely.

    Gems are not working when in items equipped by followers.

    In addition, none of the gems seem to work with followers, which I would classify as a bug. Assuming they meet the criteria (such as with several of the Legendary items that work with them like Ess of Johan) it would be reasonable to assume the gems would work on followers as well. Tested with three separate gems on Kormac and Lyndon.

    And he didn’t even get the crash bugs that forced Bliz to turn the gems off entirely. New features are… new?


    Latest Diablo 3 News

    Datamined PTR 2.1 Skills Change Comparison List


    Posted 9 Jul 2014 by at 22:05 GMT

    diablo 3 ptr skill stats comparison

    The PTR 2.1 patch landed on the servers and here are all the important PTR 2.1 skill changes in this update compared to the previous PTR build.

    DiabloWikiBarbarian

    Name Old New
    Rend – Lacerate Increase damage to 1350% weapon damage as Physical over 5 seconds. Increase damage to 1350% weapon damage as Lightning over 5 seconds.
    Rend – Ravage Increase the range of Rend to hit all enemies within 18 yards. Increase the range of Rend to hit all enemies within 18 yards.

    Rend’s damage turns into Fire.

    Rend – Mutilate Affected enemies are Chilled and take 10% increased damage from all sources. Affected enemies are Chilled and take 10% increased damage from all sources.

    Rend’s damage turns into Cold.

    Bash – Onslaught Each hit adds 2 reverberations that cause an additional 100% total weapon damage. The enemy has a 10% increased chance to be Critically Hit for 3 seconds.

    Bash’s damage turns into Lightning.

    Bash – Punish Increase the damage of your skills by 4% for 5 seconds after using Bash. This effect stacks up to 3 times. Increase your damage by 4% for 5 seconds after using Bash. This effect stacks up to 3 times.
    Bash – Frostbite Each hit has a 35% chance to Stun the enemy for 1.5 seconds. Each hit Freezes the enemy for 1.5 seconds.

    Enemies can be frozen by Bash once every 5 seconds.

    Cleave – Broad Sweep Increase damage to 210% weapon damage as Lightning. Swing at all enemies around you and increase damage to 210% weapon damage as Lightning.
    Whirlwind – Advanced Tooltip Cost: 10 Fury

    Deliver multiple attacks to everything in your path for 275% weapon damage.

    While whirlwinding, you move at 75% movement speed.

    Cost: 10 Fury

    Deliver multiple attacks to everything in your path for 340% weapon damage.

    While whirlwinding, you move at 75% movement speed.

    Whirlwind – Volcanic Eruption Turns Whirlwind into a torrent of magma that deals 325% weapon damage as Fire. Turns Whirlwind into a torrent of magma that deals 400% weapon damage as Fire.
    Whirlwind – Dust Devils Generate harsh tornadoes that deal 80% weapon damage to enemies in their path. Generate harsh tornadoes that deal 120% weapon damage to enemies in their path.
    Furious Charge – Advanced Tooltip Generate: 15 Fury
    Cooldown: 10 seconds

    Rush forward knocking back and dealing 540% weapon damage to enemies along your path.

    Generate: 15 Fury
    Cooldown: 10 seconds

    Rush forward knocking back and dealing 600% weapon damage to enemies along your path.

    Furious Charge – Battering Ram Increase the damage to 900% weapon damage as Fire. Increase the damage to 1050% weapon damage as Fire.

    DiabloWikiDemon Hunter

    Name Old New
    Fan of Knives – Advanced Tooltip Cooldown: 10 seconds

    Throw knives out in a spiral around you, dealing 450% weapon damage to all enemies within 20 yards. Your knives will also Slow the movement of enemies by 60% for 1 seconds.

    Tagged As: | Categories: Diablo 3 PTR | 21 Comments