Realbookwurm

Sweeping Changes to Greater Rift Group Meta in 2.4.1, PTR Patch Notes Soon

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Twisters and Globes are not the future of Diablo III, and the 2.4.1 PTR will show us that soon!

 

Diablo Community manager Kauza has made a fairly big post about the Season 5 meta, which to say, has not turned out how the team intended. They are talking specifically about the 3 and 4 man Greater Rift meta, which revolves around the Wizard supplying almost all of the group's damage through manipulating wizard_energytwister.pngEnergy Twister into stationary positions. The rest of the players are then tasked with herding mobs, keeping the Wizard alive and feeding them health globes, which in turn allows the Wizard free casts of ET through the wizard_passive_powerhungry.pngPower Hungry passive. This damage reaches phenomenal levels through the legendary affix baked into the 2.4 item, unique_sword_1h_107_x1_demonhunter_male.The Twisted Sword and the rune b.pngRaging Storm

 

While some might enjoy this high level of teamwork and coordination, most players consider it to be quite un-fun. Team Diablo has more than taken notice of this, and Kauza has addressed this in a large Blue post. The post covers 2.4.1 being the next patch, Taeguk changes we reported, the Greater Rift meta and how unhappy they are with it, and what their philosophy is on all the item and skill changes being made in order to alter this.

 

Later in the thread, there is also a brief mention that they are looking into making more of the Legendary Gems viable. This is great news, as currently there are around 6 or so that wind up in almost all viable endgame builds. Seems like the changes to Taeguk are to make it more niche, but clearly an auto-include within that niche. It would make more sense to have each gem be clearly tailored to a style of play, but only really work well within that style. Enforcer is a great example of this, making it into all pet-based builds, but clearly not making sense elsewhere. This change to Taeguk makes the gem an auto-include for channeling builds, and hopefully these philosophies will make their way into all the gems eventually. I'm looking at you unique_gem_009_x1_demonhunter_male.pngInvigorating Gemstone.

 

I've included the full collection of Blue posts from the thread below for ease of reference. 

 

Personally, I think the amount of change being made to target the specific meta seems too strong and probably too reactionary, but I am excited for the what rises in its place, and much more so to see the buffing of some of gems. Let us know what you think below! 

 

Blizzard Icon Kauza

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Community Manager

 

We’ve been hard at work on our next patch, which is going to bump us up to version 2.4.1. We’ll have our official PTR patch notes available soon, but we’d like to call out a few specific changes and talk about the philosophy that went into making them.

 

First, we’ve been looking at the prevalence of Barbarians in group play beyond Greater Rift 80 and how they’re being used. While many classes bring party-based buffs, the damage reduction of Ignore Pain – Mob Rule combined with Pride of Cassius is currently a clear outlier. As a result, we’re reducing the party benefit of Ignore Pain – Mob Rule from 50% to 25%. To ensure this doesn’t harm the overall viability of group play, we’re also reducing the damage of monsters at high Greater Rifts. This allows not only groups with Barbarians to remain near the same levels in terms of incoming damage, but it affords alternative group compositions greater survivability.

 

Next up, Wyatt had recently posted a bit about Taeguk. We are making some significant changes to Taeguk, as well as some other Legendary Gems.

 

First up, for Taeguk:

  • Taeguk will now only work for channeled powers
  • Taeguk will now stack more quickly, but also drop off more quickly. The maximum is now ten stacks, and you’ll now lose the stack after 1.5 seconds instead of 3 seconds
  • The Armor % component of Taeguk has been changed to 2% per stack

 

The idea here is that Taeguk will complement those moments when you’re channeling and need an extra boost. You probably won’t have Taeguk up all the time, but it won’t hurt as much when your stacks fall off as you’ll build them up much more quickly. And while the Armor % reduction will affect survivability, the reduced monster damage at higher Greater Rifts will help to balance this out. We’ll have much more to share soon on changes to other gems, which will help to make as many gems as possible work as reasonable substitutes for Taeguk.

 

Finally, we are changing both Twisted Sword and Solanium. What we’ve seen from group compositions is a playstyle based around Wizards spamming Energy Twister, while the group spams Health Globe generation. We’ve received a ton of feedback on these, and we agree completely that manipulation of the generation of health globes is not good for the game. Here’s what we’re changing:

  • Solanium is getting an internal cooldown (ICD) of 8 seconds
  • Twisted Sword is getting a cap at 5 Energy Twisters

This means a couple of things for users of these items. For Solanium users, you’ll still be able to generate additional health globes, but this removes any possibility of the current health globe spamming mechanics moving forward. For Twisted Sword users, Wizards who use the skill in the course of their normal playstyle shouldn’t see much of a change. However, the exponential scaling made possible by Energy Twister spamming won’t be possible anymore.

 

In short, you should be able to play support builds, and your Wizard should feel powerful. What we found with both of the above cases, though, is a negative effect on group dynamics and class playstyle. We’ll be taking all of your feedback during PTR to ensure we’ve hit our goals here. And, of course, thanks for all of your feedback on Patch 2.4.0. (Source)

Blizzard Icon Kazua

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The changes to Taeguk, Twisted Sword, and Solanium will be retroactive. (Source)

Blizzard Icon Kazua

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We're taking a look at some of the other Legendary gems as well to open up as many viable alternatives as we can. More on that soon! (Source)

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