Okay, I just looked it [The Law of Unintended Consequences] up and apparently it can be grouped into 3 rough groups.
A positive, unexpected benefit
A negative, unexpected detriment occurring in addition to the desired effect of the policy
A perverse effect contrary to what was originally intended
They created the MP level to provide a challenge and didn't want to provide the best rewards at the highest MP levels otherwise players would feel that they had to play at that level.
This is the perversity. Blizzard wanted to set up the system so that people didn't feel compelled to play at the highest MP levels to get the best rewards. In working so hard to accomplish this goal--which they accomplished--they set up a system in which players feel that they have to play at the lowest level they can face-roll to get the best rewards.
That's the perversity, right there. Great, you don't have to play at a level you're not geared for to get better gear! (This was the problem at launch.) Unfortunately, you have to play at a level you completely outgear.
No one here is asking for a system in which the rewards at MP10 outpace the challenges. Everyone who is asking for change has asked for the same thing: a system in which the rewards keep pace with the challenges. I'd easily settle for something that falls behind by only a bit.
I'll give you an example. Ignore MF and NV stacks for a moment (I'll get to them later), and suppose (1) that your real DPS is around 100,000 and (2) that you can expect to see a legendary every 6 hours of combat in MP0. That's our baseline: one legendary every 6 hours of combat.
Now, let's move to MP1. Ignore the mob damage bonus, and just concentrate on mob life. To get the same number of kills you had in 6 hours of combat at MP0, you have to fight 50% longer because mob life has increased by 50%. This means that you now need 9 hours of combat, on average, to generate one legendary item. To compensate, the system gives you a 25% MF bonus, which raises your chances of finding a legendary from 100 to 125. So you will find, on average, 1.25 legendaries in 9 hours of combat, or 1 every 7.2 hours.
See what happened? The challenge went up--and the rewards went down
. Off the top of my head, I can't think of any system that works like that.
Let's increases the mob health again by going to MP2. This involves another 50% increase in mob health to 225% of the MP0 value. So you now need 6 x 2.25 = 14.5 hours to find a legendary. But you get a 50% MF bonus, so you find 1.5 legendaries in 14.5 hours, or 1 every 9:40 (nine hours and forty minutes).
As you can see, it's getting worse. What can be done?
Well, the obvious approach is to scale the MF bonus with mob life. Let's just use the same MF bonuses that Blizzard gives the mobs.
At MP1, you need 9 hours to clear the same content that took 6 hours in MP0, but you find 1.5 legendaries in that time. This is the same "legendary every 6 hours" ratio you got in MP0. It's a wash.
At MP2, you need 14.5 hours to clear the same content, but you find 2.25 legendaries in that time. This is the same rate as MP0. Again, it's a wash.
Now, this system still
wouldn't be completely balanced, in part because mob damage goes up and because MF from paragon and NV stacks make the problem worse, not better. For example, with five NV stacks, you have to play 31.25% longer at MP1 to get the same number of drops as you do at MP0 because you're increasing from 175% MF to 200% MF; with no stacks, you only have to play 20% longer. But I don't care if it's a little
imbalanced--I just need it to not be so imbalanced that everyone who wants to farm automatically picks one level.
Which of these makes more sense to you, and which makes all MP levels the same?
- Playing 6 hours at any MP level produces the same number of drops.
- Playing 6 hours at a lower MP level produces more drops, encouraging players to play at the easiest level possible.
I know which one makes sense to me and everyone else here who "gets it," no matter how much you make me want to pick up the phone and order a pizza :)
Many of us pointed out this problem when it was first introduced on the PTR, and we were right. Players are, by and large, gravitating to the hardest level at which they can face-roll the game, with the sole exception of hunting keys for the Infernal Machine.
Making this change won't "make the rich get richer." It will give players equal rewards for the time they spend playing the game, not for the MP level they pick . . . which, I believe, is aligned with the spirit of Blizzard's goal in creating this system, if not the letter of it.
(BTW, on the flip side, Blizzard's higher drop rates for white mobs at higher MP levels makes higher-level play better, although not by much. This approach can be folded into the balancing of the MF rewards. The means are not important--only the ends are.)