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Blue Clarifications and Comments on Season 20 PTR Patch Notes

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We have another Nevalistis onslaught of interaction with the community, with many people talking about the recently announced Season 20 PTR and patch notes. We have discussions on the specifics of the new sets, how they function and what slots they'll occupy, clarifications on the seasonal effect, Barbarian-specific questions, some concerns about the fear mechanic damage bonus and more.

Let's start with the Barbarian concerns, namely which skills the "shout" buff applies to and the interaction of the double damage vs feared enemies:

Blizzard LogoNevalistis on Barbarians (source)

All three Tactics abilities are considered shouts. One of the Barb passives explicitly states that.

Correct. The 2-Piece applies to everything in the Tactics category.

That’s actually pretty much the intention, though less Tom and Jerry and more Predator. ? Sometimes, we like experimenting with a different approach to game play so that every set isn’t just “do more damage.” Fear is a potentially interesting, but underutilized, mechanic and actually has a lot of currently unused synergy among items and other classes (particularly Witch Doctor). Independently, I’ve been theorizing around a build that capitalizes off of working with a zDPS Witch Doctor, which we haven’t seen much of for a long time, and I’m looking forward to seeing if it plays out.

We’re trying something different and outside the box. It’s almost certainly going to need some work (most of our new stuff does). This is exactly why we have PTR, and we’d like to see what people come up with during the testing period. Personally, I see the fantasy in playing a terrifying, feral warrior that enemies flee from, and there’s definitely some tools available to make herding fleeing foes a play style or mini-game of sorts. How and if that plays out long-term will take a little experimenting and observation, and we hope you give it a go and let us know your thoughts!

Then there's this piece of info on the slots the new sets will occupy:

Blizzard LogoNew Set Item Slots (source)

I believe this is the case. I know, at the very least, it is for Wizard as I’ve play-tested the set already. Haven’t had time to do both Barb and WD yet though.

Then we have a bunch of issues clarified, from the cube staying on 3 powers, the timing of balancing and people being disappointed their class wasn't buffed, the Spirit Barrage bug and more:

Blizzard LogoNevalistis (source)

Whooooooa whoa whoa, that’s now how any of this works. It’s still three total cube powers - you can just pick those 3 from any category, instead of having to have one from each. If I need to make this clearer for future versions of the patch notes, I absolutely will! Apologies for any unintended confusion.

Yes and no. We have a lot of work to do on both Demon Hunter and Necro, and we’ve known this for some time. But that work also takes time (as does the art assets related to their upcoming sets; sometimes art happens faster than design necessitates and vice-versa). Part of the reason the order of class sets have come out in the order they have is because the art, rigging, and implementation graphically was ready first.

There has been no change to Spirit Barrage or its interaction with Ring of Emptiness. However, utilizing Ring of Emptiness with the new set might be a bit challenging, in terms of juggling which skills you want to use to benefit from it.

We’re going to see how it plays out for now, but we’ll keep an eye on it throughout PTR testing to see if any changes need to be made. As always, we’ll prioritize the health of the game first. ? Great question!

This is a very astute observation and accurate assessment. Balance does take time, as well as a lot of research. We’re also adding new content on top of that with the new sets. So it’s going to be a bit of back and forth, and it’s going to take time. We’ll do our best to always continue moving forward, as much as we can at a time.

If that’s what you really wish, I can accommodate. I understand your frustration; it’s hard when you don’t have stuff for your favorite or preferred class coming up, especially when you’re really passionate about it. Barbarians went through this for many patches before we got to them, and Necromancers haven’t had significant changes since they were added to the game.

We are addressing as much as we can, as fast as we can. If that incenses you beyond the point of wanting to participate constructively and help us start planning for that future (rather than being hostile and attacking people needlessly), I’m more than happy to fulfill your request. For now, though, I think you just need to take a break to collect yourself, and probably outside the confines of these forums.

A note on why the seasonal buff wasn't environmental:

Blizzard LogoSeasonal Buff (source)

Not every player enjoys the enjoys the environmental buffs. We actually received some of that feedback based on this current Season, and decided that we should have more “personal mechanical” buff options so we can swap off between those two preferences.

Not everyone’s going to like every Seasonal buff, (and that’s okay) but if we can have something a lot of people like on a somewhat regular basis and rotate between people’s preferences, everyone gets something once in a while and that feels like a win.

And finally a reiteration that there will be no new set dungeons:

Blizzard LogoSet Dungeons (source)

There are no plans to add new Set Dungeons for the additional class sets at this time.



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the no new set dungeon is kinda awkward for someone trying to do their season journey, but I guess it's easy enough to do with low tier items anyway.


Eye rolling at the hostility of some players though - yikes.

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Epic Patron

I really wanted some bombsader buffs, but I'll try to manage without.

I'm definitely curious about the return of zDPS WDs they mention.

Edited by Notoriousthf

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