Diablo® III

How about adding one skill slot ? 7 skill slots !

I purchased the diablo 3 mouse...4 buttons on side of mouse and your 2 standard and scroll wheel clicker. I find it hard to use the small buttons and as of late find myself popping off a hotbar skill by accident. A friend has a naga/epic with 17 programmable buttons, same thing all small and hard to use. They are nice if its usable and comfortable, but really just a fancy upgrade for computer with really no benefit. 1 threw 5 would fit all to well.

POE, guild wars, conan, and many others I've played, I seem to always go back to diablo style set-up, d2 and lod was perfect for me, with scroll working on your hotbar locks, easy to navigate and fast and easy style!

The target audience? Who really is it? All a 7th skill is, is a added option to enhance game play.
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Agree with the comments so far. Six skills is not enough when there are so many passives that are must haves. Give us a buff slot such that whatever skill we place there does not need to be recast.

Barbs can use it for shouts. Wiz for armor, familiar, or magic weapon. DH and WD for pets. Monk for mantras. Remove the costs from whatever skill we place in the slot and have it auto cast (without animation) when the cooldown wears off.

This would free up a slot without needing to add a 7th button to the game so it would still work on consoles.
Edited by Will#1963 on 1/7/2014 2:56 PM PST
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There is only so much the developers are capable of. With everything lackluster and limited, the addition of active skill slot will magnify the inferiority of this sub-par game.

Instead of giving pianist extras keys to cater for broader music masterpiece, they gave him a toy keyboard with 6 differently coloured keys.

They have absolutely no more path for future expansion if they never withhold these 'features'. It is also their nature that instead of finding solution to fix a problem, they suit the problems by breaking everything else.

This game actually feels like a mobile game, since you can actually play with it using only one hand.
Do you peeps think that it is possible to play D2 using only one and have fun?

Maybe it is too late for them to add back the 7th slot, but if they do something like weapon and skill swap, using wheel/dropdown menu. Then at least this game doesn't feel Blocked most of the time.
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01/07/2014 02:54 PMPosted by Will
Agree with the comments so far. Six skills is not enough when there are so many passives that are must haves. Give us a buff slot such that whatever skill we place there does not need to be recast.

Passives are not skills slots.... passives are seperate...

And yes we do get a 4th passive slot in ROS at lvl 70.
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An addition of a 7th skill slot in expansion to levelling a character to 70, is the different between this expansion making D3 into what LoD made D2 into.

THIS is the change on its own that will change D3 into that "Wow RoS made D3 the game that we remember." game.
Edited by Snoofo#1164 on 1/9/2014 3:18 PM PST
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01/08/2014 06:05 AMPosted by TheNightOwl
Agree with the comments so far. Six skills is not enough when there are so many passives that are must haves. Give us a buff slot such that whatever skill we place there does not need to be recast.

Passives are not skills slots.... passives are seperate...

And yes we do get a 4th passive slot in ROS at lvl 70.

I'm referring to "active" passives, or buffs. I thought that was pretty clear.
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It would be nice to have that 7th slot for some diversity in builds and skill combos, I feel so limited with my monk having to have a spirit gen and an aura which is must have 100% then on top of that i have to run serenity and sweeping wind so yea u gave me 2 skills i get to chose whooooooooo
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7 skill slot would sound great for some toons especially on some skills where to want a good all rounder for damage and protection.

But he's another mystery question I have to ask...Wizard's Archon...How come in Archon mode we don't get 6 skills? This is another million dollar question...why don't we get full 6 skills relating to Archon abilities? I mean 6 Archon abilities while in Archon mode would sound nice.

The Wizard is in another state when in Archon mode but he/she has only Primary/Secondary attack and then at least 1 or 2 extra skills depending on Rune.
I think the maximum you can have is 4 skills in Archon mode if you choose Slow time or Teleport Rune...but other runes just gives you 3 skills.
But why isn't there a rune to have both slow time and Teleport together in the skill bar.
I know this is just a game and Blizzard want to challenge us and all, but why restrict the skill bar to only a few attacks when in archon mode.
I mean hypothetically if the Wiz gets any stronger the Wiz could have 6 skills just in Archon mode...I mean hypothetically how strong can a Nephalem Wiz get in terms of powerful Wizards?

I guess the answer to my question is: Archon is already powerful, then why make it anymore power than it already is.
Blizzard probably don't want to make the game too easy by giving us 6 skills in Archon mode.
Edited by MaskedReaper#6672 on 1/9/2014 11:28 PM PST
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I would love to have a 7th skill that could be toggled my right click skill by pressing a button on the keyboard (spacebar maybe). This would let us add another spell without having to make any major adjustments to the main screen UI. Some skills also feel much better to click the mouse with, so it would be a great quality of life enhancement too.

In practice, we could use left click with primary/resource generators while right click would be used to toggle between a mobility ability (teleport, leap, dashing strike, vault, etc.) and another ability that requires the precision of a mouse click to execute.

As a monk I personally would love to have two spirit generators bound to the mouse in order to take full advantage of the combination strikes passive AND have a toggle to either dashing strike or tempest rush for travel between packs.

Monk also now has a ton of abilities with no resource costs. It's almost tough to use all my spirit now in some builds without spamming mantras, which isn't interesting gameplay. Having a 7th ability with high resource cost or long cooldown (looking at you seven sided strike) to toggle back and forth on would make my play much more interesting.
Edited by Bei#1227 on 1/10/2014 12:18 AM PST
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It literally took me a week of tech support, but I'm finally able to make this post! That's how important it was to me that I could add my two cents. So here we go...

What I really wanted for Christmas…

I think a seventh skill slot is utterly essential to making the expansion something people actually want to buy.

With the current state of Reaper of Souls, playing the Crusader is the optimal experience. This expansion pack is in many ways a reboot for Diablo III, especially with the exorcism of the auction house. With the Crusader you get to start with a fresh character, where you can see all the wonderful changes in gameplay take place from levels 1 to 70. Unless you want us to only play our Crusader, there are some problems here and it starts with the fact that expansion packs are mostly for returning customers.

Now maybe Blizzard doesn’t like to view expansion packs as only for players that are currently playing, but that’s just the nature of an expansion pack. You literally can’t even use this product unless you own the previous product, and more than likely you’ve played the old product a freakin’ ton by now.

All my hardwork put into my pre-expansion gear? Pfft, forget about it.

Now, I’m familiar with this because of how much I have played World of Warcraft. It kind of sucks replacing your amazing raid gear with green or blue equipment, but usually that equipment is earned through an awesome series of quests or something so ultimately it feels pretty good. But there’s also just a ton more going on in World of Warcraft than the equipment.

With Diablo III, the goal has always been the treasure hunt. To feel like all that old work has gone to waste doesn’t feel good, even if it is just a natural part of gearhunt cycle. The negative feeling can be balanced out if other game features feel like they compensate you for it, but I’m not sure if the current state of ROS does. Getting one new skill you probably won’t even like, and a bunch of skill runes for that same skill isn’t attractive to everybody. The new passive skills and the passive skill slot are currently the biggest reason to level up, which compensates a little for the loss of all those passive bonuses gained from your old legendary gear. But most passives just change numbers, which effects combat rhythm but doesn’t feel as dramatic as something like a completely new skill.

I’ve stopped looking at the numbers and I’m just examining how the game feels.

Combat has not changed

Most players have found their favorite skills and are going to stick with them. Most of the new active skills added in the expansion have large cooldowns and feel tough to justify messing up my current build to make room for. Sure, legendaries drop more now and are suppose to be build changers, but how much time are you asking for us to invest until it feels like we are playing a different, more powerful build? It’s just too much of a time invest before you get to the good stuff.

There should be a seventh skill slot

Just like the Auction House, Blizzard is way off on this. Players really need an additional active skill slot in this expansion. I’ve always felt six was limiting, especially when you have such an amazing selection of skills to choose from. Limiting the skills to six may have been in consideration for consoles, or too convoluted for skill loadout selection, but I think these factors were incorrect in their consideration.

So much of Diablo 3’s story felt like Call of Duty. You were getting commands barked at you a lot with have no sense of self-agency. I half-expected Tyrael to say “Would you kindly?” because of the lack of freewill this story infuses into you. Call of Duty is also kind of famous for assuming its audiences aren’t smart enough to handle a bit more depth. I feel like Blizzard is assuming that most the playerbase can’t handle how much complexity another skill slot would bring.

Simply put, it would be really fun to have another button to hit once in awhile to do cool stuff in combat. Diablo 3 needs to avoid stagnation, I don’t feel like ROS is going to deliver everything that D3 needs. ROS is more like a reboot, which does a lot of things it needs to, but still problematic. The implementation of the original Auction House not only hurt gameplay in terms of the treasure hunt, it also kept features like “smart drops” from having been developed much earlier. If there was no AH from the start, imagine what Blizzard could have already developed in the past couple of years?

A seventh skill slot would make ALLLLLLLLLLLLL of this melt by the wayside, because that is something that will make players salivate. Gimme gimme gimme.

With my Monk, I would equip Ascension or Mystic Ally in a seventh skill slot. The changes to Mystic Ally are freaking amazing, but I still can’t bring myself to replace my Mantra. Mystic Ally is a visually varied skill that, even if every Monk equipped it in this seventh skill slot there would still be plenty of difference between players. Ascension is also pretty cool, but I have a problem with big cooldown skills eating up my action bar when I want to maximize my second-to-second combat options. I also often wish I could have another spirit generator, because Fists of Thunder feels kind of essential. Teleporting to enemies and dealing area damage is just too damn handy. If I could just use Fists of Thunder to close in the distance, I could switch to a different spirit generator skill when I’m within range. I could even equip Tempest Rush in the additional skill slot, giving me the additional mobility needed to free me up to pick Crippling Wave or Deadly Reach instead of Fists of Thunder.

The fourth passive skill slot was out of necessity

ROS needed that fourth passive skill slot because too many of them felt absolutely essential for survival or you were playing the game wrong. Now, even if some of the broken essential passive skills still exist, you still have a lot of room to have fun and choose passive skills you actually want and not just need.

The fact that there are six active skill slots helps keep any one skill from feeling like it completely outweighs all of the others, but there are still a lot of active skills that players can’t get away from. Wizards always use Archon, Monks always use Fists of Thunder and Sweeping Wind, etc. Blizzard likes to throw around numbers, stating “there are a trillion, squillion different factors that make every character different!” but that’s very inaccurate. There is a difference between Effective Customization and Actual Customization. Effective Customization is the things that you feel when you make changes in your character, like a skill rune, a legendary, or a particular combination of stacked equipment effects. There may be a squillion-billion factors to make each character different, but I really feel like there are a few dozen or so different end game builds with very subtle differences.

Long Cooldowns often feel like a limitation to your toolset

The problem I’ve always had with only six skill slots is that it creates far too much of a value discrepancy with large cooldown skills. Two minutes in Diablo 3 is a really long time, and during a long cooldown it feels like you’ve got a much more limited toolset. Sure you can get a cool 20 second buff, but a lot of skills can grant buffs and be used most of the time. If you accidently use a skill with a long cooldown, it’s not only frustrating because you’re stuck not being able to use it for a really large amount of game time, you are also stuck not being able to replace it with another skill you would prefer out of frustration. ROS has taken some really good steps to make long cooldown skills more appealing, with lots of cooldown reduction found on equipment, in diamonds, and as a part of Paragon traits.

Long Cooldowns are usually the best kind of ridiculous

If you reduce Cooldowns too much, then some of the novelty of these skills wears off, and after 100 hours of gameplay, having a really cool skills to break up the rhythm of combat every minute or two can really help keep things more interesting. The long cooldown abilities are the most over-the-top and satisfying skills in the game. The big draw is when you see a champion mob, you feel a surge of excitement because that means it is time to bust out the big guns. It’s like having a giant “GO TO HELL!” button to the enemies.

Buff skills are just passive skills that go on the action bar

It also is limiting in what skills slots makes a lot of buff skills create a far less actively engaging build. Your toolbox will feel bigger if you have more skills that you use more often. If half your action bar just sits there with the exception of being clicked on every two minutes, you feel like you only have three skills. You’ll click to pick up gold more often than use some of these skills (which, y’know, you can just walk over. Not much clicking). I think what has been done with Mantra (applying a passive buff with a powerful, short term buff you can spam) was brilliant and should be the basis of all buff skills, at least in concept. There shouldn’t be a single buff skill that only has the application of being used every 2 to 10 minutes. Magic Weapon is embarrassingly dull because it is pretty much just another passive skill (I really, really hate Magic Weapon, because it’s been handy to have a lot but the most BORING skill in the game).

Many players have grown accustomed to the skills they have

When players buy the expansion pack, it isn’t going to feel that cool when they reach level 70 and their character plays the exact same way they did the past 150 hours. Maybe that’s their prerogative to not change because they’ve gotten so used to it, but also ROS doesn’t really add much incentive to experiment (unless it involves one of the many skills that has been altered, which for the Wizard may apply but not as much for many other classes). With another skill slot, most people would probably just slap in the cool new expansion active skill at first, giving them a chance to experiment with it (and making all that work Blizz put into these new skills more worth their time and money invested) and then possibly changing their builds around that. Heck, just gaining access to a new active skill slot may be enough to encourage players to try completely new builds. A new active skill slot would really freshen up the game, make it feel really new again. And, as is the state of ROS currently, it doesn’t feel that cool to gain nothing but runes for a single skill over ten levels. That fourth passive skill slot is the cherry on top. Unfortunately, the fourth passive skill slot is what is going to really appeal to most players actual, not the new active skills.

But new Legendaries encourage new builds

The acquisition rate of legendaries that will truly change a player’s build will always be too slow at maximum level to really motivate a player. Legendaries can’t drop too often or they no longer feel special, but if you don’t get enough legendaries after putting in some time, ROS may leave players feeling like they’re just playing the exact same character they did pre-expansion. If you turn off all the numbers floating around, you really have a hard time seeing the difference ROS equipment makes for your character. It just feels like the usual level curve equipment replacement that I feel every time I play a WoW expansion, but way more tragic. Loot is the soul of Diablo 3, so having to ditch your coolest stuff for the new expansion makes it less appealing to buy.

Hook the player and they will keep coming back for more

Someone who has put in hundreds hours in Diablo 3 already isn’t going to be super happy to have to replace all their hard earned equipment with what feels like crappier equipment. There’s a sense of dread reaching 70 again and starting endgame over, and your still using the same skills you have in the past. How different is the game going to feel with that character once you put in another 60 hours? You’ll replace one skill maybe because of a legendary you found? Is that worth the time and effort? What is worth the time and effort is if you got a seventh skill slot in addition to the new skill and the new passive skill slot for playing what is maybe twenty hours to get from level 60 to 70? That is where you HOOK the player in. Once you give them those super sexy incentives that really change the game and make your character feel new again, then legendaries will be incredibly exciting. Not only will legendary items have a chance of moving you away from your old skill loadout, it can affect what you do with that new and exciting seventh skill slot.
I really think if you gave a seventh skill slot, it would triple the enjoyment I have of this game. The best thing about Diablo III are the active skills and skill runes. You obliterated skill trees into the stone-age. It is ingenious and the best skill customization system I have ever seen. Adding another active skill slot helps emphasis what makes Diablo 3 fun: using your character’s powerful spells and abilities to annihilate hordes of monsters.
Edited by donkdonkle#1116 on 1/13/2014 8:14 AM PST
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01/10/2014 08:58 AMPosted by donkdonkle
Adding another active skill slot helps emphasis what makes Diablo 3 fun: using your character’s powerful spells and abilities to annihilate hordes of monsters.

I liked your post and see this guy gets it. Im tired of being railroaded into all defensive or all offensive game play. Would like the option of a mix, defensive and offensive on the skill bar, without heavily relying on weapons to make up for what is not on my skill bar. Hope ros changes that fact. Barb's sword and board is prime example, the extra defense you get, you are going to want offensive skills and passives on to make up for a dps loss. So you can't equip a defensive passive like war cry impunity without loosing a offense skill. Extra passive, yes you can equip a extra passive at 70, a defensive passive, but that just makes the must haves out weigh the ideal passives to use. Same with all characters, we are all stream lined into offensive with the right weaps to make up for defensive loss.

Just my 2 cents but a gift from blizz like this would go along way with the community and make up for waiting this long on expac and any patches. While there at it why not bring back their added mfind/exp bonus again for a week. Plain and simple, make some fun and exciting improvements to game play, to keep the community happy.
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As a DH:
1 skill slot for generator
2 skill slot for survival (Smoke Bomb or LifeSteal, Vault)
1 skill slot for AoE (Elemental shot, etc)
2 for sustain (Bat and Preparation)

When needed, usually I change Bat to other AoE Damage skill, but as you can see, due to the current monster density, there is hardly place for Single target skills for DH.

If I got 7th skill slot, I'll add Single target skill (Impale, etc).
I definitely agree with OP, as I always feel there is almost no place for single target spells as a DH.

As a WD (not main):
All skill slot on offense except 1 slot for survival skill.
Definitely need 1 more slot for defensive situational skill.

For "Summoner +/or explode dog" type build they wasted too much slots just for summon, and have no skill slot left for much offense, 1 more slot will definitely helps.
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Allot prefer to have just 6 skills, with excuse saying 'active buff' for the seventh are fearful of change/improvements. They will need to work, practice and train to fully utilize the seventh skill, and they can no longer play this dumb down game with one hand, holding beer on the other.

Blizzard on the other side, need extra resource, creativity to cater for the 7th slot, and to also revamp the controls for consoles.

Just ONE addition of skill slot really make all the differences. Skills with long cooldown suddenly found it's way into builds. Simple and subtle activated passives get integrated. Escape or movement skills were added, rewarding the players for skillful plays.

I'm using the example of Rhythm games, a genre which simple actions brings out a very big dynamic and complex experiences for players.
There's 4 kind of actions for button to have.
2.Press and hold
4.Sequence/Simultaneous press (aka combos)

A Rhythm game that only have 3 buttons (3 skill slot) are able to engage the players to have a interesting experience. How do the developer increase the challenge?
They can either increase the tempo or add more variations of sequences, but this is the limit.
Introducing one additional buttons make it slightly easier. Still the challenge wasn't enough.

A (normal) human has 4 fingers and a thumb in one hand, when all actions are being executed single-handedly, the executions were either dull or easy to carry out. Following this concept, the highest difficulty for Rhythm games usually requires 5-6 input.

For D3 to make use of this concept, developers need to understand how players handle the controls for this game. The action 'hand' utilize the mouse, in which handles the primary and secondary attacks. Fulfilling single-hand criteria for one hand. Whereas for the other, 4 skills slots which just nice cater for each of the fingers for keyboard, and the 'thumb/pinky' for force move/standstill. Satisfying this arrangement, perfectly complete a DULL game.

Players hardly move their fingers, let alone the hands. Some builds also requires the players to just hold and 'spam' for the entire 'combat'. There is no room for competition or skill play.
If taking Blizzard other franchise games, there's this term call micro, which requires the professional players to map all whole lot of keys for the best effective execution. In which, Diablo 3 DON'T NEED.

From previous Diablo installments, the skill slot seems to be fewer, but in actual fact, it is allot more complex. 2 skills, which are interchangeable at will, requires players judgement to 'use' the spells at the correct time. Current D3, is like a group of players playing one whack-a-mole game, each safeguarding the hole which the rodent may pop up and then obtain the high-score. Having one finger on each spell slots and press without much thought doesn't need skill.

A game which players cannot be good at, will never be good.
Gears-check game is lucky based.One can never control luck.
Players wished to be lucky, while developers wished they weren't. How would both work together?
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I think the main issue is with "active passive" abilities. I would make 3 categories:

-passive skills (mainly current passive skills, just add 25% to something), I would even make it as a big passive skill tree (like D2 or PoE)
-power passive skills (more powerful, like magic weapon, auras, just 1 or 2 per build)
-active skills - spam to use

The other version of this idea might be introducing skill weight. Some skills are such powerful, that they're taking more slots. And that's your choice if U prefer less IMBA skills or more regular skills.

I think the reason for having (i.e.) "magic weapon" in active skill set is - it's to powerful. So "weight skills" solution addresses this issue. We move "magic weapon" to passive skill set with more weight. Alternatively we move it to "power passive skill" category, depends on solution. I think in current version - introducing "power passive skills" category would be better.
Edited by asembler#2245 on 1/16/2014 6:48 AM PST
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Posts: 474
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!

currently EVERY class has to "sacrifice" at least 2 skill slots between shields/auras/defensive skills and primary generators. this leaves very little space for build customization considering you ARE pushed towards AoE skills. this basically ALWAYS leaves out situational spells that COULD have an use but arent the top choice for an all-round build, so those are left in the dust.

i could cite you a TON of spells as examples, for any class, but since more than 2 years passed already since initial release im pretty sure you're quite aware of what im referring too (sentries much?)

01/03/2014 04:59 PMPosted by Lylirra
On the flip side, how would having an extra skill slot improve your game experience?

having another slot would give builds in general some fresh breath, because simply, theres a large difference between "choosing whats best" and "choosing whats best along with what you like".
on top of that, it could CREATE new builds because, as math teaches us.. the more slots, the higher the moltiplicator. this concept is so simple that i really dont get how you ended up with discarding the 7th slot. forcing people toward a "tough" decision is not always fun, expecially if not 100% of spells/runes are perfectly balanced (because lets face it, most arent).

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)?

as a DH, multishot is a good situational aoe spender.. but not an overall good spender. since most of my slots are still taken up by defensive spells ill always pick up the best anti-elite spender rather than using multishot, of which's damage pales in comparison to.. lets say, loaded for bear.
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Just do it! Push it out on PTR and see the results!
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I too agree with the need for 1 more skill slot. Honestly I would prefer to use all of my skills without penalty, however I want to macro them out. But 7 is better than 6 and know exactly what one move I would add with it, given the extra slot.
Edited by AXEINGAR#1114 on 1/16/2014 11:58 AM PST
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So Blizz, will you consider this seventh skill slot ? Gameplay would really be more active & interesting with more skills to handle.

Also, it seems a lot of people agree with the idea. And Maths are on our side too :p
Edited by Lyth#2898 on 1/17/2014 1:58 PM PST
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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)?

Because i come from WoW and my WoW toons have 20+ buttons and now i must use 6...if i dont want passives. This is a just a huge difference and the stimulation provided is not enough. Having more slots would allow greater use of combat tactics, making meaningfull choices in real time.

01/03/2014 07:34 PMPosted by Rinnegan
but not too much to where you don't have to make thoughtful decisions about what you put on your bar

But wht about making choices while u are in combat? I think those are more exciting than deciding wht goes on my bar.

To be fair, u make ur bar choice once. While in combat ur going to have to make a choice of skills on a regular basis.
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