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After Eras, here we have a developer chronicle about engaging monsters.
Joe talks about engaging monsters:
An engaging monster has to affect your behavior. If you see a Succubus in your Zombie Rift, it's unpredictable and qualifies as engaging, as you probably don't want to get hit by her Blood Star (slowly moving projectile) on higher difficulties. You may also predict the cast and stun the mob. Mob selection for Greater Rifts is like a monster soup and too much Lacuni throws off the flavor. There are failsafe mechanisms in place, so you won't see Exorcists, Succubi, Moon Clan Shamans and Lacuni Huntresses in a single pack together, when progressing through rifts. Blizzard Entertainment
Hello, Joe Shely here.
I’m one of the designers on the Diablo III team working on gameplay systems and content like Greater Rifts. One of my responsibilities is to make sure the monsters you fight are fun and engaging. Today, I’ll be answering a question about rift monsters.
Lacuni in my Zombie Rift?!
Progressing though a rift is about dealing with the unexpected. Zombies are slow and predictable, so fighting one group of zombies will feel about the same as fighting another group. We add engaging monsters like the Lacuni or the Succubus to change the fight dynamics.
What Qualifies as “Engaging?”
An engaging monster has the capacity to affect your behavior. Let’s look at the Succubus for a moment. Her primary attack, Blood Star, is a fairly slow-moving, seeking projectile. When pushing Greater Rifts, you’d probably prefer not to get hit by that projectile. You might take an action to avoid it, like moving out of the way just before it reaches you or stunning the Succubus when you see her cast.
We like engaging monsters. They make the game more interesting by providing opportunities for your character’s abilities and legendary powers to shine. It’s satisfying to use Cyclone Strike to pull several Succubi close and then Blinding Flash them all before they can cast Blood Star.
Of course, when you’re playing on a difficulty level that’s easy for your character, you might not worry about the Succubus at all. That’s okay, too.
Too Much of a Good Thing
Imagine visiting an area and finding it packed with Moon Clan Shaman, Exorcists, Lacuni Huntresses, Blood Clan Sorcerers, Succubi, and Exorcists. Bit of a mess, right? Although we do throw monsters from different areas together in Greater Rifts, we carefully choose which monsters you see together. A good mix of monsters has a couple of things to avoid, a healthy chunk of basic attackers, and a little spice in the form of a big bruiser or a monster with unusual movement.
It’s like monster soup. Too much Lacuni in your soup throws off the flavor.
In addition, while a monster’s signature ability can make it engaging to battle against, sometimes it can cross the line and become frustrating. When Reaper of Souls launched, the Primordial Scavenger’s armor wouldn’t break until you’d taken off a significant chunk of its health, but only certain types of attacks were able to bypass the armor to deal damage. This mechanic wasn’t communicated clearly, and some classes had trouble delivering the right kind of damage to break its armor. It didn’t make the monster engaging because it wasn’t obvious what you were supposed to do or how to do it. So in patch 2.3.0, we changed the armor to break after it takes five hits. Since it breaks more consistently, you can now focus on putting the hurt on the Scavenger after it breaks.
We’re always on the lookout for cases where we can make a monster more fun and satisfying to kill while keeping the game engaging, and it’s something we consider when designing new monsters.
Being a big fan of the Jade Harvester build of Witch Doctors I'm still conflicted in my choice sometimes because I'm a hardcore player and the issue I seem to run into going past GR70 is surviving certain bosses.
If there is any question here it would be: How, if even at all, do you deal with charge bosses like the Pitlord/Ravager on hardcore as Jade Harvester?
My last Jade died around GR70 to this because I was determined that I should kill it but after waiting out some cooldowns I didn't even get to move when walking back in because the charge is instant and oneshots you because of the lack of Soul Harvest stacks and Horrify.
I love the build but dealing with bosses with it is by far one of the most tricky things I've done in Diablo 3... All other builds I've tried up there in 70+ all have their ways of killing just about any boss but Jade sometimes feel like I have to end the GR if the wrong boss spawns making it a slightly more annoying "fishing" than seeinga monster and nope out of it right away.
Seems the page for a Witch Doctor is broken since it only loads half of it basically.
I've tried Firefox, Chrome and Internet Explorer. They all stop at the "Hands" section for stat-priority list.