Diablo® III

How about adding one skill slot ? 7 skill slots !

How is having only six skill lots negatively impacting your gameplay experience right now? If you can cite specific examples, even better!
On the flip side, how would having an extra skill slot improve your game experience?
If you had a 7th skill slot, what additional spells or abilities would you add to your bar (on top of the builds you use currently)?


I've always loved the skill limitation system since it adds tactics to the game. You can't excel at everything and so you have to decide what you want your build to specialize in. It's a good system.

Personally there's a couple of things I'd like to see changed though.

1) Whatever is linked to your primary mouse attack should always default to a basic attack when unavailable. Some skills do this and others don't which makes things feel wrong.

2) Instead of 6 skills and 4 passives I'd like to see 10 Power slots. Let us use any combination of these we choose in our build design. 9 passives and 1 skill, 5 skills and 5 passives, 10 skills and 0 passives. It would open up build customization a lot albeit making things far more difficult to balance on your end.
Edited by babinro#1836 on 1/4/2014 9:56 AM PST
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If I had also another active skill slot I would probably add another utility/ enhancement spell to my skillset; mirror image, teleport or time warp/ familiar, weapon enchantment, spell armor.

There is little sense in my mind to add in another "signature spell" or big arcane power spender- can't channel arcane torrent and drop meteors at the same time for example. but what would be interesting is throwing in other spells that compliment the signature/spender.
Edited by Chronal#1523 on 1/4/2014 9:56 AM PST
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01/04/2014 09:55 AMPosted by babinro
How is having only six skill lots negatively impacting your gameplay experience right now? If you can cite specific examples, even better!
On the flip side, how would having an extra skill slot improve your game experience?
If you had a 7th skill slot, what additional spells or abilities would you add to your bar (on top of the builds you use currently)?


I've always loved the skill limitation system since it adds tactics to the game. You can't excel at everything and so you have to decide what you want your build to specialize in. It's a good system.

Personally there's a couple of things I'd like to see changed though.

1) Whatever is linked to your primary mouse attack should always default to a basic attack when unavailable. Some skills do this and others don't which makes things feel wrong.

2) Instead of 6 skills and 4 passives I'd like to see 10 Power slots. Let us use any combination of these we choose in our build design. 9 passives and 1 skill, 5 skills and 5 passives, 10 skills and 0 passives. It would open up build customization a lot albeit making things far more difficult to balance on your end.


As good as that look on paper. I think the real issue with implementing this in-game would be how do you handle when primary attack is assigned to a passive?

By the same token I think the system (actual code in diablo 3) is hardcoded to split between skill and passive. It would take enormous time/money (guessing here) to rework the entire thing in just what 3 months?
Edited by Plaguebone#1428 on 1/4/2014 10:03 AM PST
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As good as that look on paper. I think the real issue with implementing this in-game would be how do you handle when primary attack is assigned to a passive?

By the same token I think the system (actual code in diablo 3) is hardcoded to split between skill and passive. It would take enormous time/money (guessing here) to rework the entire thing in just what 3 months?
Basic attacks are hardcoded to the left click when used on a monster or breakable object regardless of whatever is placed there.

I agree with you though.
That suggestion would be better suited for a game built around that idea from the start rather than tweaking a system that already works. For all I know it wouldn't even improve the game either...just seems like fun idea to throw out there.
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quite often I find myself thinking "how I wish I had skill X slotted right now...". of course, skill X varies with the situation, it's that one that will save me right now.

but I don't think just giving an ordinary 7th slot would work. some people would think "cool, another skill!" while others would think "now I can have ___ Armor AND Familiar AND Magic Weapon AND ... all at once and my damage will increase X%". and this is the kind of thought that already dominates the game, we don't need a 7th slot for that. if a 7th skill slot was to be added, I would like it to be exclusively for situational stuff, the things that you never put in the bar because there's always something more efficient damage-wise.

to make it work, we could get a "joker" slot. in this slot, you could put any 3 not-runed skills (switchable with F1 through F3 keys) with less than 30 seconds cooldown and duration and that you don't already have in the ordinary slots. using the slot would put it in a 1min cooldown.

- "not-runed" gives use to the not-runed version of each skill (currently useless);
- "less than 30 seconds cooldown" guarantees that you wont put Archon or WotB in this slot (skills like this are just short and powerful buffs, they are not situational at all);
- "less than 30 seconds duration" guarantees you won't put something like Familiar or a Mantra in this slot, changing it in just another mindless buff;
- the 1minute cooldown makes this slot best used with forms of control instead of pure damage;
- the ability to put 3 skills in this slot gives A LOT of versatility, making up for the many limitations this slot has built-in.

if you think about it, it's not that different of what D2 had. in D2 we had 8 easy-access skills (F1 through F8), but clicking in the current skill icon we could pick any other, including those without an F-key.
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01/03/2014 04:59 PMPosted by Lylirra
Going to echo a similar response I gave to a thread that asked this same question a few months ago. Apologies for the overlap, but the answer hasn't changed since then. :)

So! No current plans to increase the 6-skill limit. We still feel that 6 is a good number, enough to give you flexibility in your build choices, but not too much to where you don't have to make thoughtful decisions about what you put on your bar. (We actually had 7 skills available for a pretty substantial period of time before Diablo III shipped; however, after lots of testing and feedback rounds, we reduced the number to 6. So, this is definitely something we've not only considered, but also evaluated heavily in the actual game environment.)

We know that some players may disagree with that approach (example: the OP). Totally cool, but let me turn the question back on you and then add a few more, because learning why you prefer one gameplay feature over another is super meaningful. Also, sometimes it can be pretty fun, too.

  • How is having only six skill lots negatively impacting your gameplay experience right now? If you can cite specific examples, even better!
  • On the flip side, how would having an extra skill slot improve your game experience?
  • If you had a 7th skill slot, what additional spells or abilities would you add to your bar (on top of the builds you use currently)?

Note that players will get a 4th passive slot at level 70.


Imo, it feels like we need this 7th slot cause with RoS will be added some huuuuge spells like the barb avalanche, vengeance on DH piranha on WD, epiphany on monks and ... dont remember the name of the wizard one.

Tbh, those news skills are awesome and strong.
They were builded to compensate some "weaknesses" on classes (Dunno about other class, but I think for monks and DH mainly, with vengeance being the huge DPS CD the class lacked, and on monks, epiphany has been build mainly to compensate the lack of dashing mechanics on others spirit builders than fist of thunder).

Those are really well thinked, but... so usefull to not play them. It's like a must have and so, we only have 5 slots left... It's a bit sad imo.

That's my POV. :)
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How is having only six skill lots negatively impacting your gameplay experience right now? If you can cite specific examples, even better!
On the flip side, how would having an extra skill slot improve your game experience?
If you had a 7th skill slot, what additional spells or abilities would you add to your bar (on top of the builds you use currently)?


The 7-th skill slot i could use to add High Cooldown spells/Buffs/or an Extra Defensive ability,
lIke teleport for wizzard or vault for Dh even the leap ability for Barbarian.From the begining of the game i always wished i had 1 More Skill slot..! And the funny thing..this is what happened every time i wanted to experiment with skill builds..NOT to copy/paste from the web the most eficient of them..
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I am pretty confident that we will see this 7th skill slot in the next expansion, if they really do a second one. I would not be surprised, if they actually hold quite some ideas and content back just for that. I mean, it makes ense, I would not waste ALL of may good ideas in one game/expansion either.
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With the Barbarian I could use an extra skill slot for more defensive skills, when you have a few active skills its always a bummer that you cant use 1 extra skill for a shout or something.

But it adds choice to the game, if we get 7 skills there will be people that will ask for 8 and so on.

In D2 I never used that much skills just 1 maxed out primary and 1 favorite secondary with a few lower level backup skills most of the time.
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How is having only six skill slots negatively impacting your gameplay experience right now? If you can cite specific examples, even better!

Let us say, for example, that I am playing the Witch Doctor. Basically the only skill that is reliably going to save me from the "OH !@#$ VORTEX!!" moments is Spirit Walk. Otherwise I have to accept the fact that I will die 2-3 times against Vortex, area denial or Waller/Jailer enemies. In case of Champion packs who can chain-vortex/wall/jail me, having an escape ability with a 15 second cooldown means I can reliably escape the first Vortex, I can maybe walk out with some health from the second one and I die to the third. If I want to avoid these (regular and commonplace) situations, I have to have another defensive skill to hold me over when my Spirit Walk is on cooldown. I also naturally have to have a primary skill.

That is three slots occupied by mandatory skills, leaving me with 3 that actually define and differentiate my build from the others. 1 will most likely be a massive DPS skill for those dangerous monsters you simply cannot be killing over time. Those who have to die NOW, like armodons. Ok, 2 slots left. AoE is a must and many heavy nuke abilities don't have much AoE (Hammer of the Ancients for example). Ok, 1 slot left. This is the slot you can put something fun into. The others are mostly set for you.

Example:
WD:
Primary - Firebomb
AoE: Zombie Bears;
Nuke: Sacrifice;
Fun: Zombie Dogs.

Now if I want to maximize the use I get from Zombie Handler passive, I would like to take Gargantuan, but Gargantuan isn't very defensive, is on long cooldown and wont help me in jail or vortex situations. I am left with the choice of making a fun summoner and dying all the time, or going safe with two defensive skills and having no fun with the build.


On the flip side, how would having an extra skill slot improve your game experience?

Having an extra skill slot would remove the frustration of having to occupy 2-3 slots with mandatory skills that are necessary for survival but aren't essentially a part of YOUR BUILD. If you want to make a Summoner WD, having something like spirit walk isn't THE BUILD, it is what you need to even stay alive to play your build. The basic frustration isn't created by the fact that there are too few slots, but by the fact that you need very specific must-have skills to deal with artificially created danger situations such as getting Vortexed/Chain-Frozen/Walled/Jailed. This is further amplified by base monster abilities such as Deceiver's invisibility, Phase Beast's teleport, Lasher's tongue grab, Armodon's stun etc.


If you had a 7th skill slot, what additional spells or abilities would you add to your bar (on top of the builds you use currently)?

I would use skills that complete my build, give it a fun factor, have long cooldowns or simply make more use of my passives. If I take the No Escape passive, it's almost a wasted passive slot if I'm not using both Weapon Throw and Ancient Spear. If I'm using both, I'm creating giant holes in the character. If I'm wanting to make a Fetish WD, and make as much use as I can of Tribal Rites, I can use Hex, Big Bad Voodoo and Fetish Army (no clue why they replace my Sycophants :-/) a nuke and a primary for Sycophants and a single defensive skill, but I have occupied 3 of my slots with fun skills and my survival needs have gone to hell. If I take survival over some of the fun skills, my Tribal Rites almost feels useless because it only decreases a cooldown of a skill or two.
Edited by lMarcusl#2387 on 1/4/2014 12:56 PM PST
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I'm mostly okay with 6 slots. It prompts me to more focused and in the end I feel I have a better character than I would otherwise. However, there is one character, the wizard, where I feel severely handicapped. Personally, I think this has to do more with the nature of the skills than it does with player choice.

Example, most people run energy shield. Fine, a defensive skill is always a worthwhile slot. Unfortunately, It's not enough so most people have to run diamond skin as well, defense is now up to two slots. Now, people need an escape/jail break skill, teleport. At this point, half the skill slots have been used just for a chance the stay alive. This leaves only 3 slots available for all other considerations like attack, crowd control, special situations, maybe a buff. Is it possible to get by on the remaining 3 skill slots? Yes, but no one likes a one trick pony.

I know in the expansion the wizard is getting massive skill changes so this might all change. As things stand right now, I believe the wizard needs more comprehensive defensive skills so that players can focus on offensive skills for their builds. A quick suggestion would be to rework shield skills to have an active/passive quality similar to the crusader's law skills. I'm aware that magic classes like the wizard are supposed to be glass cannons but, what good is a glass cannon that can't shoot.
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Ok, I've read through the debate and this is what I have to say... regarding the rule of 6 out of 12 marbles posted earlier... with the amount of skills available, the exact amount of (total combinations) would be highest if the player was allowed to have more skill slots... for example, if you have 20 skills, 10 would lead to the highest number of combinations... so again, how is having 1 more slot a bad thing?

This is my take...and perhaps how to fix the problem.

If you are going to make a 7th slot you have several distinct ways to go....

1) Make the slot for "Uber" Skills (those with LONG cooldowns). For instance, Archon would go here, Berzerker, Call of the Ancients, Avalanche, and Earthquake would go here...

2) Make the 7th slot for MOBILITY ONLY ... that is, round up all of the moves that a player can have, drop them out of their current categories and re-brand them all. So you now have Generators, Spenders, Mobility, Defense... Make Defense and Mobility free and ONLY allow this in the 7th slot. After all, all classes have at least 1 move that allows them to sprint, roll, leap, or charge. So, why not make this the 7th slot... in essence, a utility slot. Governed ONLY by cooldowns and not by resource. This way, the entire game is simplified to a point, but made more robust as well!

3) Allow this 7th slot to be for active Legendary items (items that give the player the ability to teleport, explode, or do some other move that is specific to legendaries.

Just my 2 cents, but I see much to be gained from a 7th slot.
Edited by TheOneRaven#1565 on 1/4/2014 1:51 PM PST
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Wait for the second expansion....
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I know I've already made a wall of text but just one more thought that I've had for a while. Let us consider the new skills that are added with the Expansion. I have looked at them, considered the rune options, considered the 16 builds I currently have in mind for D3 (only played 10 so far). I wouldn't want to use a single one of those skills in any of my builds because I was barely able to get what I need into those builds.

Adding Avalanche into my Earthshaker Barbarian would be great fun and would synergize nicely with one of the new passives. But I am simply not taking a fun Avalanche skill to replace my stun, nuke, earthquake, mobility or primary skill. What role does Avalanche fulfill that isn't better fulfilled with a more spammable skill already in the game? It would be the fun factor, the skill that adds more expression to my Earthshaker, one that I could use to make up for the Earthquake that Rakanoth just teleported away from.

With every skill I was like yeah, that skill might be fun, but it doesn't fulfill an important role that I need covered and with only 6 slots and so many mandatories, I'm not taking it. Epiphany looks like fun but I have no room for fun in any of my Monks, I need too many mandatories to fit Epiphany in there.

Simply said if monster affixes stay the same or follow the same train of thought as they have up to this point, there is little room for fun skills that would define or solidify your build. If monster affixes get more "fair" (nerf on vortex, waller etc. especially in Champion packs) there is no need for 7th skill. I also need to stress that I have always played self-found, so even though some may say that the game is easy enough with 6 slots, I have personally finished Inferno with 3 builds so far and have felt frustrated in all of them because there was one specific skill I needed to make the build perfect and there just was no room. Since I can't DPS as much in self-found, I need more defense. More defense means less character expression, less personality, more must-have. And since the whole game will be self-found now, that will create issues down the line in RoS.
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Posts: 1,341
I would definitely have to say that another skill slot could only be beneficial to the "fantasy" of playing any of these characters.

If you take into consideration the fact that you need the following: An auto attack, an armor, a heal, a CC, a nuke...in almost every build? You end up left with just about a single skill which really feels like you. I'd argue for making another skill slot or two available just for the sake of mixing it up. Having only one skill that partially covers a task actually leaves you tactically weak no matter which way you slice it. Providing more options doesn't in any way shallow the experience as the data provided goes on to explain, but in factual reality deepens it, all the while making your character more fun to play. =)
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01/04/2014 01:55 PMPosted by joca
Wait for the second expansion....


Do you have any idea of how long starcraft 2 players are waiting for Legacy of Protoss expansion? (slightly off topic)

I rather they try it now and do some more experimenting than wait 2 years for another chance to shake up the skill bar so to speak.
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01/03/2014 05:12 PMPosted by BobWitchDR

I'm forced to choose "the best" skills for an average range of conditions rather than having situational abilities available for when they're needed. Because of that, I never equip the situational skills. The need for spamming mass damage output occurs more often than the need to fight in a certain way, so my damage spells win out over the others.


This +9001.
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01/03/2014 04:59 PMPosted by Lylirra
How is having only six skill lots negatively impacting your gameplay experience right now? If you can cite specific examples, even better!
It is not.

01/03/2014 04:59 PMPosted by Lylirra
On the flip side, how would having an extra skill slot improve your game experience?
I would imagine that having the synergy of one more skill on the bar could blow open new builds and/or make some current ones OP (read FUN).

01/03/2014 04:59 PMPosted by Lylirra
If you had a 7th skill slot, what additional spells or abilities would you add to your bar (on top of the builds you use currently)?
Vault, Preparation, Marked for Death, Fan of Knives....man I don't know. Possibilities are endless for me.
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While I am happy with 6 skills, I would like to see in RoS a quick-switch button that lets players change to another skill-set they've saved. I am drawn to that type of convenience.
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