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Major Diablo 3 Updates
08-21-2012, 04:26 PM,
Re: Major Diablo 3 Updates
It made me a little more excited to play again that's for sure. I can't wait to test out an all pet build.

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08-21-2012, 04:28 PM,
RE: Major Diablo 3 Updates
Gives me a reason to give Diablo III a second shot, after quitting some time ago due to getting frustrated with Act II and getting one-shoted all the freaking time.
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08-22-2012, 10:51 AM, (This post was last modified: 08-22-2012, 10:54 AM by Phyrre56.)
RE: Major Diablo 3 Updates
Reading some of the reviews on the (toxic) D3 forums, it seems that the changes are fine, the game is easier now, but the loot has barely changed. Seems like they made a lot of smaller improvements while still neglecting the biggest problem -- you just don't get decent loot often enough to feel compelled to play for more than a few days.

I could go on and on about this, but the auction house ruined long term Diablo gameplay. Like most games, it's just a random number generator with a pretty exterior -- same as D2. The fun part is enjoying when the random number generator falls in your favor. It's the same reason people enjoy slot machines. The thrill of the big win is worth the repetitive boring attempts and losses.

In D3, the slot machine doesn't pay out often enough. Think about a slot machine that only payed out once a year. You'd have to live in the casino and channel a significant amount of time and effort into that machine to ever get to the fun part. It's possible, but not reasonable. That's the problem with D3. The designers are thinking "Hey, it's possible, players will like this." But the players are thinking "Nope, this is just a game, you need to excite me more often than this to hold my attention."

Then you factor in the Auction House. It's the outlet for the loot frustration. "GAH I spent 100 hours trying to find fun gear and got nothing, whatever I'll just buy it." Now you've subverted the entire system. A loot hunt is no fun when you can just buy the rewards up front.

I'll stop now because this is getting long winded. But the bottom line is that D3 was never meant to be as fun as D2. It was designed to cash in on the fan base via upfront sales and auction house. Rather than divest the Diablo franchise because it's not MMO, Blizz decided to squeeze some cash out its fans first. I'm not expecting the game to get much better, because Blizz doesn't care if it gets much better. They've already made their money and killed the franchise, and they only care about MMOs as their long term plan.

It was a smart business decision to prop up company earnings between WoW and "Titan," but a terrible way to treat their loyal fan base.
08-22-2012, 02:36 PM, (This post was last modified: 08-22-2012, 02:38 PM by ichigeki.)
RE: Major Diablo 3 Updates
Good thoughts Phyrre,

I agree with everything you've said. D3 is nothing like D2.

However, speaking about item quality and that feel of "rewarding", I think a lot of it has to do with relativity. In Diablo 3's current situation, we a lot of players playing in one server. For Diablo 2, we had less players playing over 2 servers. With that said, you would likely feel like you have found a more powerful item when playing Diablo 2, due to less people looting.

I believe that the reason behind Diablo 3 being less "fun" is because everyone is playing under one server. (Diablo 3's #1 problem)

Now a valid argument against my theory is that the majority of items you find will not take you through the entire game, which in my opinion is Diablo 3's #2 problem.

Both of these problems add up to Blizzard making a larger profit by, having less servers to hold up and forcing players to use the auction house. Great business approach, not so great great fan loyalty approach.
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08-22-2012, 03:01 PM,
RE: Major Diablo 3 Updates
(08-21-2012, 12:10 PM)ichigeki Wrote: Honestly, it seems too easy now that they weakened nearly all enemies and powered up most skills. I think the difficulty is fine. Just create a more rewarding feeling would of been nice.

They were so focused on Inferno that i think they forgot what they did to the other difficulties. I think they only changed the monsters HP in inferno. But they buffed the skills for all levels, so normal through hell are gonna be even easier.

My lvl 12 barb is just slicing through normal with those early skill buffs of over 100% increases.
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08-22-2012, 03:22 PM, (This post was last modified: 08-22-2012, 03:26 PM by Phyrre56.)
RE: Major Diablo 3 Updates
Here is my theory on how Diablo 3 was developed. I may be wrong about some of the particulars but I do think this is the big picture.

Development started with good intentions in 2001 at Blizzard North. Of course, Blizzard North was closed in 2005 and many of the creators behind Diablo 2 were lost.

Meanwhile World of Warcraft launched in 2004 and was a huge success. Let's compare the revenue of a hardcore D2 fan vs. a hardcore WoW fan:

D2 fan: Original game ($60) + Expansion ($35) = $95

WoW fan: Original game ($20) + All Expansions ($150) + 8 years of subscription fees (~$1,200) = $1,370

Now of course, very few people bought WoW, all of its expansions, and maintained a continuous subscription since Day 1. But even just a year of subscriptions put WoW ahead of even the most devoted D2 fan.

The success of WoW killed the D2 model. It no longer makes sense to develop a long game for $60 without a subscription fees. Your developer time is better spent on MMORPGs.

So you're Blizzard. You have a half-completed Diablo 3 and you just fired most of the people behind it. You have WoW rewriting the book on gaming. It's time to plan each of your assets.

Starcraft is easy. Make a decent upgrade to Starcraft 1, and fans will enjoy PvP indefinitely. You're not expected to add much new content other than full expansions.

Diablo is more complicated. You don't really want to keep the Diablo franchise alive. It's essentially single player WoW. But there's a mountain of money to be made just by releasing a game with "Diablo from Blizzard" in the title. You can either release "Diablo 2 HD" (essentially keeping the mechanics of Diablo 2 with a fancy new coat of paint) and that would sell well. But it won't get any additional revenue streams...

Enter the Real Money Auction House! Here's your revenue stream. Now the goal is to get people using it. Here are the obvious strategies:

1) Make most of the loot complete garbage. If players find good loot on their own, they won't need the auction house.

2) Make the good drops insanely hard to find. If there are thousands of copies of every good drop freely available, prices will plummet along with your cut of the transactions.

3) Keep patching the game to make good gear bad. (This has already happened with the V1.0x patches!) You don't want someone getting all the best gear and using it forever. You have to periodically make that gear worthless and restart the cycle again -- like D2 Ladders but with bad intentions.

4) Don't do much about Bots, because they're fueling the system. Blizzard is essentially in the Botting industry now -- they get a cut of Bot activity! Why in the world would they shut them down?

5) String people along as slowly as possible. Remember PvP? It was supposed to be implemented "shortly" after the release of D3. It's still nowhere in sight. The point is that players are hanging around thinking...well at least I'll give it a shot until PvP gets implemented. It's the never ending promise of something new on the horizon that keeps people in the game even though it quickly becomes boring and you never get any good drops and periodically they ruin your gear and the economy is run by bots.

It's so brilliantly evil, I almost want to applaud them for it. This is cold blooded capitalism at its peak.

Meanwhile I reinstalled Diablo 2 and have been playing a TON of it. And it's still good! I installed a few mods (HD mod, shared stash mod) and I'm trying all sorts of character builds. It's the game I wanted D3 to be.

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