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Season 17: An Ancient & Primal Guide

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With the Season of Nightmares in full swing, Blizzard posted a guide on Ancient and Primal items, where they highlight the difference between them and talk about the ongoing Seasonal bonus, which increases your damage dealt and reduces damage taken by a percentage for each Ancient you equip.

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Ancient items truly shine in Season 17: so long as you have no Set bonuses equipped, each Ancient you equip will provide you with a massive 750% boost to damage dealt and 4% reduction in damage taken. For those of you who may have taken a break from gathering loot recently, we thought a quick refresher was in order to clear up any confusion about the differences between Legendary, Ancient, and Primal Ancient items.

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In general, Ancient and Primal Ancient items are more powerful versions of Legendary items. They are identical to Legendary items except that their base attributes (damage or armor) and all non-percentile affixes roll higher values for both minimum and maximum possible rolls.

Ancient & Primal Ancient Items

  • The stats on these items will (generally) be tailored to the character class you are playing when the item drops
  • Set items are also able to roll as both Ancient and Primal Ancient
  • You can’t equip more than one item with the same name, even if one is Ancient and the other isn’t
  • Any percentage-based affix will not be boosted (such as Attack Speed, bonus % to skills or % Critical Hit Chance/Damage)

Ancient Items

  • Only drop for characters who have reached level 70, and only on Torment level difficulties
  • When dropped, Ancient items share the same orange glow as regular Legendaries
    • You must identify the item to see if it’s an Ancient
    • Once identified, Ancient items have an orange border (or green for Set items) around the item tooltip and say "Ancient" in the item description.
  • They drop from all sources including monsters, chests, Kadala, Horadric Caches, Kanai's Cube, and even crafting at the Blacksmith or Jeweler

Primal Ancient Items

  • When dropped, Primal Ancient items have a red beam and glow
  • Drops from any source of Legendary item in the game, including Horadric Caches, Kadala, and Kanai's Cube, but only after having successfully completed at least a level 70 Greater Rift solo
  • These items are much rarer than Ancient items and have perfect Ancient-level stats on all affixes, including the item’s Legendary Power

Primal Ancients & Developer Philosophy

Primal Ancients are for players who have largely completed gearing for their build or finished their Season Journey but want to continue playing. They’re also for non-Seasonal players who have great gear and spend most of their time gaining Paragon Levels and upgrading Legendary Gems. We wanted to extend the excitement of seeing gear drop or spending Blood Shards at Kadala beyond obtaining Ancients in every slot. Primals provide an avenue for dedicated players to complete a build, without feeling like required upgrades.

We hope that answers any questions you may have about Ancients and Primal Ancients. Now go get ‘em!

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Primal ancients don't really have any use beyond looking cool. The problem is that even if u get a useful primal, it's likely to be worse than the regular ancient u have, because of a wrong stat. They should make primal always reforge to primal. Or come up with another way to make them relevant but not required. Instead they made them not required by making them irrelevant. Fail.

Edited by pwnz0r

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8 hours ago, pwnz0r said:

Primal ancients don't really have any use beyond looking cool. The problem is that even if u get a useful primal, it's likely to be worse than the regular ancient u have, because of a wrong stat. They should make primal always reforge to primal. Or come up with another way to make them relevant but not required. Instead they made them not required by making them irrelevant. Fail.

I disagree with this. Even with imperfect stats, a primal weapon is still amazing because of max main stat, max damage range and max legendary affix. Especially on items that have massive ranges, things like Deathwish, for example.

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You can disagree all you want, but i'm telling you, by the time you get such a primal, you'll already have a very close to primal rolled ancient with the right stats. Also, read better my previous post 'cos i clearly stated my point there already, which you clearly missed.

Which is like super lame 'cos, if you think about it, a regular ancient can be an upgrade to a primal.

Although, primal were meant to be more powerful (rolling higher min-max values, like with ancients vs normal legs), but because botters and ppl playing 18h/day would have had an unfair advantage vs casuals, 'cos of the low drop rate, blizz backtracked after community backlash, and did some cheapo damage control by making them useless.

Edited by pwnz0r

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16 hours ago, pwnz0r said:

You can disagree all you want, but i'm telling you, by the time you get such a primal, you'll already have a very close to primal rolled ancient with the right stats. Also, read better my previous post 'cos i clearly stated my point there already, which you clearly missed.

 

Maybe you have some problems with the English language (like I have myself), but your post said: Primals are likely to be worse then ancient items.

And Blainie is correct: With weapons that is definitly not the case.

Primal weapons are almost always better then ancient ones. Because they have perfect weapon range, perfect main attribute and perfect affix (if the weapon has such a thing).

Since those are in most cases the most important stuff for a weapon, you automatically fullfill most of what a weapon needs to have.

Then you can switch one attribute you do not like and you have:

1 perfect weapon range

1 perfect attribute of your choice

1 perfect main attribute

1 perfect affix (if avaiable)

Chances of this being better then any ancient item you have are huge.

 

However, with other equipment it is different - there is a high chance you have 2 (or even 3) attributes you do not want. Even with changing one it you still miss at least one important attribute. -> making it worse then a well rolled ancient item.

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That's not true, you guys don't play the game, that's evident by your faulty reasoning. Especially for weapons, you lose a lot more dps by having a wrong stat (eg. missing area damage, cdr, rcr, attack speed etc.), than having the min-max ranges a little lower than primal. Just run any build on d3planner and you'll see.

I don't have much of a problem with english, read better:

On 5/27/2019 at 9:53 AM, pwnz0r said:

The problem is that even if u get a useful primal, it's likely to be worse than the regular ancient u have, because of a wrong stat.

On 5/27/2019 at 6:26 PM, pwnz0r said:

by the time you get such a primal, you'll already have a very close to primal rolled ancient with the right stats.

Maybe i failed to point out that i meant having a wrong stat after you already rolled one on the primal. Which means it originally drops with more than one wrong stat, but that is pretty much implied, if one knows the game.

EDIT: Also, almost everyone sees a legendary affix roll of 400% vs 300% as giving double, 100% more, increased damage. When in fact it's just 25% effective damage boost. Even less % if you have equipped more than one item that are adding to the same affix.

Edited by pwnz0r

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Let's take a look at the necessary stats.

IK Hammer of the Ancients Barb:

  •  
  1. Socket (preferably from Ramaladni's GiftRamaladni's Gift)
  2. Weapon Damage
  3. Strength
  4. Area Damage
  5. Increased Attack Speed
  6. Damage %

Your primal will give you:

1, check

2, check

3, check

4 in doubt

5 in doubt

6 in doubt

even if you are extremly unlucky, you can reroll one into are damage.

Giving you the first 4 stats.

 

Wizard, ARchon, Vyr

  •  
  1. High Base Weapon Damage
  2. Intelligence
  3. Socket (preferably from Ramaladni's GiftRamaladni's Gift)
  4. Cooldown Reduction
  5. % Weapon Damage
  6. Life per Hit

 

1. check

2. check

3. check

4 in doubt

5. in doubt

6. in doubt

 

again, by even if you are unlucky with the stats you have at least the 4 most important stats

 

Deamon Hunter, Nataliya Marauder Sentry:

  •  
  1. Socket (preferably from Ramaladni's GiftRamaladni's Gift)
  2. Weapon Damage
  3. Dexterity
  4. % Weapon Damage
  5. Vitality
  6. Resource Cost Reduction

 

1. check

2. check

3. check

4. in doubt

5. in doubt

6. in doubt

 

and - what a huge surprise - we have again the first 4 stats guaranteed.

 

All 3 examples are some of the strongest builds avaiable at the moment.

 

But hey, why am I waisting my time? Obviously you are not interested in facts.

What you say is true for non-weapon items.

For weapons, an ancient one is almost always better then a non-ancient one.

 

23 hours ago, pwnz0r said:

 

EDIT: Also, almost everyone sees a legendary affix roll of 400% vs 300% as giving double, 100% more, increased damage. When in fact it's just 25% effective damage boost. Even less % if you have equipped more than one item that are adding to the same affix.

 

 

Thank you for stating something obvious.

And yeah, 15-25% damage increase is absolutly nothing, yeah sure.

 

Edited by Guest

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You just confirmed what i was saying, having an ancient with perfect attributes and above average mi-max values, will always beat a primal that does not have perfect attributes. Just run it on d3planner and the numbers will show.

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On 5/29/2019 at 12:07 PM, pwnz0r said:

You just confirmed what i was saying, having an ancient with perfect attributes and above average mi-max values, will always beat a primal that does not have perfect attributes. Just run it on d3planner and the numbers will show.

Well yeah.

If you comapre it to a (close to) perfectly rolled ancient: Perfect stats, near perfect values, high min-max range.

Sure, Primal can't be better then.

But: What are your chances of a "perfect" ancient? I played quite a lot (several hundred hours) of D3 and I have decent ancient weapons. (3 chars)

But not perfect ones. After several hundred hours.

Maybe your chance of getting a perfect ancient is higher then getting a primal weapon.

But how many players have a "perfect" ancient? I have no idea, but it won't be that many.

 

And for every other player (which will be how many? 95%?) a primal weapon will be better and a great find.

Are primals absolutly awesome? Are they as game-changing as ancient have been when they were implemented?

No, absolutly not. Not enough impact, way too rare and in most cases worse then ancients.

Are they completly useless?

Not as a weapon, as a weapon they will benefit most players.

For other gear-slots: Yeah, they are useless.

 

However, I totally agree with one thing: Reforging a primal should definitly result in a primal again.

 

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As someone who plays seasons almost exclusively, averaging around 100 hours per season (casual player category obviously), if a primal weapon of a top tier spec drops, it get's used.  I switch to that spec if needed - it makes that much of a difference given my level of play.  100 hours is just not enough time, on average, to get the high quality ancient that would be required to replace it.  Regardless, given enough time a primal that was better than a perfect ancient would eventually drop. 

I think the strongest evidence against your argument are the leaderboards.  I just went and checked the seasonal boards for the top players among DH, WD, Crusader and Barbs (I'm not going to check them all) and I see a lot of primals being used.  When I check the normal boards, I see even more primals in use on average.

 

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Sure, but you can't draw conclusions from some data that's circumstantial at best. So, it happens that, this season, some meta builds benefit from those weapons' guaranteed (to drop with) attributes. So every primal is basically (almost) guaranteed to be better (vs ancients) for some meta builds, for the current season. Next season, patch, who knows.

Still, even without counting the cost to benefit of primals, it feels lame that a 'perfect attributes' ancient can easily beat a 'crappy attributes' primal.

Edited by pwnz0r

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Hey guys, i read the topic and some comments here, you are all telling right about ancients and primals, but there is something that we are not paying attention, the primals are the ancients with max stats,

so if you are comparing a primal with an "ideal" ancient item, ofc that ancient item is better.

But if we compare casual drops for primals vs normal ancients that we get, primals are better. Unless the stats you want has some priority. Sometimes i do not change my normal legendary item with ancients with bad rolls, its a huge damage drop. Unless i get the stats that i want.

And i do not compare the case that both are "ideal" so we know the answer already.

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      Barbarian:
      Leveling and Fresh 70 Guide
      Support GR Build with Raekor and HotNS Sets (Top) Boulder Toss Build with the Raekor Set (Top) Rend Build with Wrath of the Wastes Set (Top) Hammer of the Ancients GR Build With LoD (Top) Frenzy Build with the Horde of the Ninety Savages Set (High) Leap/Earthquake Build with Might of the Earth Set (High) Seismic Slam Build with Might of the Earth Set (High) Hammer of the Ancients Build with the Immortal King Set (Mid ) Furious Charge Build with Immortal King and Raekor Sets (Low)  

      Crusader:
      Leveling and Fresh 70 Guide
      Heaven's Fury Build with Aegis of Valor Set (Top) Thorns Bombardment Build with Akkhan and Invoker Sets (High) Bombardment Build with Legacy of Dreams Set (High) Thorns Build with Invoker Set (High) Sweep Attack Build with Roland's Set (High) Blessed Shield Build with Legacy of Dreams (Mid) Condemn Build with Legacy of Dreams (Mid) Condemn Build with Akkhan Set (Mid) Blessed Hammer (Hammerdin) Build with Seeker of the Light Set (Mid) Fist of the Heavens Build with Aegis of Valor Set (Low) Shield Bash Build with Roland's Set (Low)  
      Demon Hunter:
      Leveling and Fresh 70 Guide
      Support Build with Gears of Dreadlands/Marauder (Top) Multishot Build with Marauder Set (Top) Cluster Arrow Build with Marauder Set (High) Impale Build with Shadow's Mantle (High) Hungering Arrow Build with Gears of Dreadlands  (High) Rapid Fire Build with Natalya's Vengeance  (High) Rapid Fire Build with Legacy of Dreams  (High) Multishot Build with Unhallowed Essence Set (Mid) Sentry Build with Natalya's and Marauder Set (Mid) Rain of Vengeance Build with Natalya's Set (Low) Grenade Build with Unhallowed Essence Sets (Low) Chakram Build with Unhallowed Essence Set (Low)  
      Monk:
      Leveling and Fresh 70 Guide
      Mystic Ally Build with Inna's Mantra Set  (Top) Support Build with Inna's Mantra Set  (Top) Wave of Light Build with Legacy of Dreams (High) Tempest Rush Build with the Patterns of Justice Set (High) Tempest Rush Build with Sunwuko Set (High) Wave of Light Build with Sunwuko Set  (Mid) Seven-Sided Strike Build with Uliana's Stratagem Set  (Mid) Lashing Tail Kick Build with Sunwuko Set  (Mid) Crippling Wave Build with Raiment and Shenlong Sets  (Low) Lashing Tail Kick Build with Legacy of Dreams  (Low)
       
      Necromancer:
      Leveling and Fresh 70 Guide
      Necromancer Support Build With Pestilence Set (Top) Corpse Explosion Build with Legacy of Dreams (Top) Army of the Dead Build with Rathma Set (High) Corpse Lance Build with Legacy of Dreams Set (High) Poison Scythe Build with Legacy of Dreams (High) Bone Spear Build with the Masquerade set (Mid) Corpse Explosion Build with Inarius Set (Mid) Generator Build with Grace of Inarius Set (Mid) Blood Nova Build with Legacy of Dreams (Mid) Skeletal Mage Singularity "Rat" Build with Legacy of Dreams (Low) Corpse Lance Build with Pestilence or Trag'Oul Set (Low) Corpse Explosion Build With Trag'Oul and Jesseth Sets (Low) Thorns Skeletons Build with Legacy of Dreams (Low)
       
      Witch Doctor:
      Leveling and Fresh 70 Guide
      Corpse Spiders Build with Spirit of Arachyr Set (Top) Carnevil Poison Dart Build with Zunimassa Set (Top) Spirit Barrage Build with the Mundunugu's Regalia Set (High) Carnevil Dagger of Darts Build with Legacy of Dreams (High) Spirit Barrage Build with Legacy of Dreams (Mid) Zombie Bears Build with Helltooth Set (Mid) Soul Harvest Build with Jade Harvester Set  (Mid) Firebats Build with Spirit of Arachyr Set (Mid) Gargantuan Build with Zunimassa Set (Low) Gargantuan Build with Helltooth Set (Low)
       
      Wizard:
      Leveling and Fresh 70 Guide
      Explosive Blast Build with Firebird Set (Top) Flame Blades Build with Firebird Set (Top) Energy Twister Build with Legacy of Dreams (High) Mammoth Hydra Build with Legacy of Dreams (High) Frost Hydra Build with Typhon's Veil (High) Archon Build with Vyr Set (Mid) Energy Twister Build with DMO Set (Mid) Frozen Orb Build with Legacy of Drea (Mid) Frozen Orb Build with DMO Set (Mid) Frozen Orb Build with Tal Rasha (Low) Arcane Orbit Build with DMO Set (Low) Explosive Blast Farming Build with Tal Rasha Set (Low)  
      We hope you have fun in the new season, and you can check out the full patch notes here.
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