Diablo 3: Why Taeguk Isn't Fun, and What is Being Done About It

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Senior Technical Game Designer Wyatt Cheng hit the forums with information about possible incoming changes to a staple legendary gem.


One of the things a Diablo player can expect is an atmosphere of constant change. This has worked its way into the soul of Diablo, and we now now have a functional Metagame that shifts constantly. Remember the days when a Mempo of Twilight was the best helm in the game, and Echoing Fury sat at the top of the DPS charts? Of course we have moved a far distance from those days, but the changes are bound to keep coming. There are a variety of factors that contribute to this, one of which is the developers are always tweaking things to make the game more enjoyable. 


One of the key points which was made during the 10 Items in 10 Minutes Lightning Talks was that the team really have begun actively discouraging game play which results in players "playing the buff bar," and not the game. 




What they mean is that certain abilities are crucial aspects to the performance of a build, but they don't want player to only be sitting and watching their bars to keep buffs up. They have the opinion that actually slaying monsters might be more fun that playing "Buff Bar Tycoon" and I happen to agree. It is one of the main reasons they pushed out more appealing choices to replace Focus and Restraint dominated meta which was Season 4. It encouraged too much attention being focused on little icons, and not on the hordes of demons! 


This was the driving force behind the complete Buff Bar overhaul we had in Patch 2.4, and the changes have generally been really well received. Unfortunately there are still a few items in the game that still fall into the old playstyle, and require constant attention from the player in order to be effective. The Legendary Gem Taeguk is a prime example of this. The gem creates a stacking buff with a brief duration, and the buff is so critical in most builds that run the gem, that players often find themselves playing "don't let Taeguk expire."


The good news is that Team Diablo is aware of these offenders, and they are actively working on ways to fix the problem. Wyatt Cheng shared this in the Official Forums yesterday. 


Blizzard Icon Wyatt Cheng

Taeguk feels too necessary for a number of builds that it doesn’t fit well into. Every gem should have a specific use. Zei’s Stone of Vengeance is an example of a gem we think works well: it’s used by people who want a ranged playstyle, and it’s not used by people who fight close. Taeguk was intended to be a gem that was great for players who used movement-based channeled skills like Strafe or Whirlwind. It feels bad shooting Multishot into thin air to keep Taeguk stacks up, and we want to look at some changes that would give players other options. We want to avoid changes to Taeguk that would further cement Taeguk as a gem that is strong regardless of playstyle. We’re still working out the best way to address this, but if we change Taeguk to adjust it more for channeled skills then we would certainly provide other comparable alternatives, probably in the form of buffs to some other legendary gems. (Source)


Stay tuned for more news as it develops! 

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I don't understand why people would put Taeguk on their D.H. in the first place...seems like to much up keep on it for such a range player....why would you not run (like Mr. Cheng said) Zei's Stone of Vengeance, Siplicity's Strength, Bane of the Powerful, or even Bane of the Stricken....all good LGs that could put real good use to a D.H....or if you are feeling really frisky you could even go Gem of Efficacious Toxin, Because at level 25 every enemy that you poison to 10% Increased damage from all sources...with the right kit all 5 of these gems can make a D.H. run farely well solo, but would help destroy in groups...are these people picking this item because it runs very well with certain builds from certain Hero's? Because in all truth why not run LGs that would help maximize your damage with out the stressful upkeep of a Gem that you have to make sure you reset before the 3 sec mark me sounds like people arn't playing the game to its fullest...they are looking at builds online so they can get to the same point as some people who actually had to go through the items and find out their style of man's/woman's build might work for them and not others because of their play style...first and for most this game is made to have do runs with friends and enjoy your experience...Try different things and who knows your build might be crazy but works...hey im just a fellow D3 player like all of you and i must say Be you, do what you DO! from your friend PlainMcgee

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Taeguk buffs your armor as well as your damage.  It's one of the few (maybe the only) gems to buff both--and buff them considerably--which is why it's used even where it's not a natural fit.  Even though it's a pain to keep it up on, say, a Furious Charge barbarian, if you can keep it up, you get a buff you can't really get any other way, which gives that ever-sought-after edge in pushing Greater Rifts.


I hate Taeguk, and refuse to use it anywhere except on my Whirlwind Barb, where it's tolerable (but still not favorite.)  I'm really glad they are looking at this, because I couldn't agree more.  Playing the buff bar is obnoxious!


Another thing I'd like addressed is all the incidental things that kill the buff.  Getting frozen or jailed is part of the game, and I can change how I play the game (for example, wear Ice Climbers) to prevent losing my buff.  But I lose Taeguk stacks almost every time I load a new Rift level (slow computer), or when I have to free a prisoner on a bounty, or when the game pauses to "skip" a cut scene before a boss.  When it takes a good minute or more to build that buff back up, this is very frustrating, especially on timed Greater Rift runs!

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