Diablo® III

1.07 one day out - Vorpal's Random Musings

1/28/2013 - Today's topic: Expanding the lore of Sanctuary by telling other stories

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what follows may be a bit controversial.

Recently talk of the D3 expansion has ramped up on these forums. Great news. I can’t wait to hear what the Dev-team has in store for D3. That said I can’t help but thinking Blizzard has backed itself into a corner.

D3 marks the third time we’ve destroyed Diablo. Moreover, his brothers and the Lesser Evils have all been dispatched, along with the soul stones. How many times will Diablo and the Greater/Lesser Evils come back only to be face-rolled again before the story gets old and tiresome?

Blizzard created an awesome world in Sanctuary, rich with lore and history. I for one would like to see a deeper exploration into this history.

I propose an expansion that tells a different story. Let’s get away from Diablo a little bit. Let’s explore some other conflicts within Sanctuary.

That’s right, a Diablo game that has less to do with Diablo, and more to do the great deeds of heros and villains within Sanctuary.

And if you all hate it; I'm not married to the idea. Rack me. Out.

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Edited by vorpalblade#1827 on 2/13/2013 10:49 AM PST
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Definitely no. The game is already too far away from it's older versions. That is why population is low and people complain. We need to make the game about what the previous games were about. The struggle between good and evil, light and darkness and the powers that be. Restore mystery to the story. The best character in the game is only vaguely spoken of.
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01/28/2013 10:44 AMPosted by n0rain
Definitely no. The game is already too far away from it's older versions. That is why population is low and people complain. We need to make the game about what the previous games were about.


valid point - I agree with you. This game has gotten away from what the first 2 were about. I'd like to see a move closer to the original games as well - with regard to artistic direction and game systems.

That said - I make that proposal for the sake of the story (the more times Diablo comes back, the more it feels like a child's cartoon). I also don't think Good vs. Evil has to mean Diablo finds a way to come back, and PC has to kill him. Good vs Evil and story expansion are not mutually exclusive IMO.
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I think I can agree with this.

One thing I like about D3 is that it takes the bulk of the important points from the first game, and not only makes them more relevant to a new chapter in the story, but it adds to them a new dimension revealing that Aidan, Leoric's other son, was in fact the Warrior that vanquished Diablo the first time, and that he impregnated Adria to start this quest going.

So I think if they were to add layers to an expansion's story, I agree that they should perhaps think laterally (potentially even backward in time) and not just tack another Act on, let people hunt Adria, and further pound evil into the ground.

I mean, Adria is easily still out there for us to go after, and I think an epic boss battle with her would be pretty amazing, but I too want to know more about the lore and the universe and if that can be done with a slew of new side quests and areas to explore for each Act, I think that'd be a lot more beneficial than just one more act on the end of the game and that's it.

Not only that, but I want to know more about Aidan. I want to know more about why he was strong enough to defeat Diablo. Was it because Diablo had inhabited his brother's body?
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Evil in this game is Diablo. More specifically, Evil in this game is the 7 aspects of hell which include Diablo. Technically we don't have to rez him, but connecting him to the plot would be a good idea. There are several routes you could go. Anu and Tathamet. Malthael and Inarius. These are characters that would pose a significant amount of content.

We could say that in Malthael's search for the answers in Pandemonium he came across an ancient ritual that would reset the universe and bring back Anu and Tathamet but I don't know. I still think that may be over doing it. Malthael also releases Inarius and Lilith. I mean there are infinite possibilities but Good vs Evil is essentially PC vs the supernatural imo.

@Card

I'm just going to have to /ignore you. Your ability to reason is estranged. I cannot imagine anyone thinking this story was given "more dimensions" with Diablo III. It's a sad state of affairs that people are just so... eh... It's not worth it.
Edited by n0rain#1149 on 1/28/2013 11:14 AM PST
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what follows may be a bit controversial.

Recently talk of the D3 expansion has ramped up on these forums. Great news. I can’t wait to hear what the Dev-team has in store for D3. That said I can’t help but thinking Blizzard has backed itself into a corner.

D3 marks the third time we’ve destroyed Diablo. Moreover, his brothers and the Lesser Evils have all been dispatched, along with the soul stones. How many times will Diablo and the Greater/Lesser Evils come back only to be face-rolled again before the story gets old and tiresome?

Blizzard created an awesome world in Sanctuary, rich with lore and history. I for one would like to see a deeper exploration into this history.

I propose an expansion that tells a different story. Let’s get away from Diablo a little bit. Let’s explore some other conflicts within Sanctuary.

That’s right, a Diablo game that has less to do with Diablo, and more to do the great deeds of heros and villains within Sanctuary.

And if you all hate it; I'm not married to the idea. Rack me. Out.

Hmm.. so what are we going to call it, since Diablo is out? Actually will it have anything to do with the Diablo series at all?
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Hmm.. so what are we going to call it, since Diablo is out? Actually will it have anything to do with the Diablo series at all?


It will have a lot to do with the Diablo series. First off, it will take place in Sanctuary. It would include both new and familiar locations, including areas of importance we've only read about from secondary sources (like book of cain or other non-game cannon). Wouldn't it be cool to learn about fallout of the Mage Wars by experiencing characters who could recount it first hand? Diablo and the Prime/Lesser Evils would still be part of the game inasmuch as they (have) orchestrated a lot of evil that exists in Sanctuary like puppet masters manipulating a puppet... Many of the evils that a PC battles have come about via the corrupting influences of the Evils.

My point is simply the world of Santuary is vast. I'd like to see more of it. I'd like to see the series remain true to its spirit, but outgrow the drab - DIABLO HAS RETURNED...AGAIN - feel. It suffocates the story, and I think the D3 story is an example of this...

Its one thing to fight Diablo again. But now we are fighting the SK again, and The Butcher again, and Izual again. Its time broaden the scope a bit here.
Edited by vorpalblade#1827 on 1/28/2013 12:10 PM PST
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I do think that bringing some of the 1st generation Nephalem back could add depth to the series. I'm all for bringing Vassly and Rathem to the front and center of the story! That sounds interesting. Bul'Kathos could even make a return.

In the defense of the butcher, he wasn't intended to be as important as they made him look in D3. The character was iconic to fans because he was difficult but from a lore perspective the butcher was just a tortured soul. There were many of them. As for Izual. I never understood why he came back. We frred him in D2 so it doesn't make much sense to bring hime back.
Edited by n0rain#1149 on 1/28/2013 11:50 AM PST
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Its one thing to fight Diablo again. But now we are fighting the SK again, and The Butcher again, and Izual again. Its time broaden the scope a bit here.


I agree.

I don't even think the word Horadrim comes up once in D3. Which is outrageous. How much did Nephalem get talked about in D2? I haven't played in eight years so I am a bit rusty with that lore.
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1/29/2013 - Today’s Topic: End-game

Diablo launched with NO end-game. Now, almost nine months out, has an anemic excuse of an end-game. Some of you may argue that it has as much of an endgame as D1 and D2, and the end-game is sufficient as is. That argument fails for two reasons. First, part of the lasting appeal of D1 and D2 was re-rolling heros. However, because of D3’s skill system, this no longer applies. Second, D2 was twelve years ago, and times and expectations have changed.

The D-team knows that the end-game is not sustainable and is working on the issue. I’m not going to give direct suggestions in this post, but I will layout some broad parameters that Blizz should be consider:

1. Should be options for both PvE and PvP players
2. Should include a ranking system or ladder of some kind, some way to quantitatively measure your performance against other players.
3. Should include some sort of end-game currency that allows players to purchase gear that distinguishes the hero and his/her accomplishments (Banners are start, but they are weak – we need some really unique gear)
4. Should include a place to show off that really unique gear to EVERYONE, Not just the other 3 players in the game.

Rack me. Out.
Edited by vorpalblade#1827 on 1/29/2013 11:16 AM PST
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4. Should include a place to show off that really unique gear to EVERYONE, Not just the other 3 players in the game.


I was hoping that eventually they would implement, in the armory, a page where we could actually see the hero and get a little taste of the skills and damage available. The hero standing on a rotating pedestal performing skills or something.

Twitter now has Vine, which is like a video gif of little snippets. Why couldn't our armory profile have something like that where we take small clips of our dudes mowing down soul lashers or whatever we want. Just a ten second video of being a BA, making it rain with legendaries on the corpse of Diablo or something.

Also perhaps at least be able to browse the AH outside of the GUI? I'd like to have a look at stuff briefly on my work computer.
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01/29/2013 10:46 AMPosted by papadanko
I was hoping that eventually they would implement, in the armory, a page where we could actually see the hero and get a little taste of the skills and damage available. The hero standing on a rotating pedestal performing skills or something.


Regarding point 4, I have a few specific ideas in mind. The first is a simple return to the B.net circa 1998 chat, where player's heroes could be seen in the chat. Not bad.

However I like this idea more: have chat channels that are essentially in game, in a big city i.e Caldeum. Would be cool to have the chat take place in the city - you could see other heroes and such. Can't use skills, but can trade and group up and do other "chatty" things. When a player is ready, they can leave the "chat-city" and do a run, at which point the chat will appear as it does now.
Edited by vorpalblade#1827 on 1/29/2013 11:07 AM PST
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01/29/2013 10:46 AMPosted by papadanko
Why couldn't our armory profile have something like that where we take small clips of our dudes mowing down soul lashers or whatever we want. Just a ten second video of being a BA, making it rain with legendaries on the corpse of Diablo or something.


This is pretty cool idea.
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01/29/2013 12:18 PMPosted by vorpalblade
This is pretty cool idea.


http://us.battle.net/d3/en/class/barbarian/active/

They kind of have this for each class... small theater-type movies for each attack illustration. But if there were an option in the menus that said "Record Snippet" for example, or if you could bind it to a key, you could do your own little clip much like a screen shot. Also what if it could be from zoom, though your viewable area could remain 100%. Possible. Say you pull all of Core of Arreat Level 2 and wipe em out in ten seconds for a huge massacre. Now you don't have to do a messy screen cap and stick that garbage on youtube where no one is going to watch it. You can put it on BNET where no one will watch it.

And once you've published it, the content wouldn't have to set in its own windowbox, it is certainly within reasonable coding capabilities to make the films an active part of in-page content.

Just an idea.
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1/30/2013 - Today's topic: Re-aligning the end game reward structure.

Today’s topic is a bit nebulous (google it), but bear with me. I’m going to talk a bit about skill system, a bit about build choices, a bit about combat mechanics and a bit about end game.

It does not take much skill to be "successful" at Diablo 3. End of story. It takes a lot of time (or money), but it does not take much skill. As-is, the game rewards efficient farming techniques above all else. This is really a shame because the game could be so much more.

I don’t think anyone would argue that the best part of this game is the combat system. It’s fluid, polished and slick. The game should reward players who have a strong command of the skill bar, and excel in combat.

How? Currently, most players employ builds that are designed to clear content AFAP for farming purposes – because that is all there is to do. As the end-game evolves, I’d like to see ladders/rankings for cooperative success in highly tuned 5-player dungeons. Successful teams will use skills that synergize well together. Resource management, effective communication and well-executed strategy will be critical. Unsuccessful teams will work as individuals, and employ builds designed to maximize DPS and individual survivability.

Examples of (less often used) skills that might become more valuable:
1. Monk – breath of heaven
2. Wizard – slow/haste time
3. DH – marked for death
4. Barb – demoralize

Moreover, I'd like to see players start to think about how cross-class skills synergize. Proper dungeon tuning, coupled with adequate incentives will promote deeper play.

TL;DR: Players who want to farm can still be rewarded for efficient farming practices. However, players at end game looking for a deeper PvE challenge will appreciate how this system fosters a deeper level of play. The system rewards effective resource management, skill timing, and strategy.
Rack me. Out.
Edited by vorpalblade#1827 on 1/30/2013 12:11 PM PST
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1/31/213 - Today’s Topic: weapon dps/skill paradigm

I see a lot of threads complaining about the items in D3. I agree with most of what I read. The item system is boring, one dimensional and, in many ways, a large step backward from D2. For a game that is ALL about items – this kinda sucks.

1.04 was an improvement, but itemization is still on life support. At the end of the day, none of additional guaranteed affixes make any difference to the usefulness of the item if it does not roll well in a handful of different stats.

Without detaching skill damage from weapons DPS, the item system will continue to be one dimensional. No matter how many unique affixes you give unique items, if they don’t roll good main stats, they will have no utility. End of story.

Switching gears a little, I think the legendary/rare balance is in a pretty good place. Rare items have potential to roll best in slot type-numbers, and you don’t see people clamoring for the exact same legendries like you did in Diablo 2. I think there still improvements that could be made here, but the diversity is strong enough at the moment. I’d like to see the D-team correct the weapon DPS/skill paradigm issue first.
Edited by vorpalblade#1827 on 1/31/2013 10:41 AM PST
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2/1/2013 - Today's Topic: Expansion Classes

Its always cool to think about the D-team has in store for us. The expansion will most certainly add 1 or 2 classes...I have a few ideas of what I'd like to see.

Shields are borderline useless in D3. I'd like to see a class that uses the shield..as a weapon. I picture this class as a Spartans in 300. Some characteristics of the class would be:
1. must use a shield (cannot use 2 handers)
2. shield contributes to DPS
3. skill system revolves around sword and board itemization

I'd also like to see a return of the melee mage. The wizard has some close range attacks, but they are all mostly uninteresting, and not really battle-mageish. Some characteristics of this class would be:
1. duel resource system - half arcane power, half fury (or perhaps spirit)
2. main attributes are str and int - fury spending skills are buffed by str and int spending skills are buffed by int. Some skills could be hybrid
3. class is comfortable both in the mix and standing back pummeling from afar. players can build the type of battle-mage they want to play.

Rack me. out.
Edited by vorpalblade#1827 on 2/1/2013 12:24 PM PST
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2/4/2013 - Today's Topic: PvP balance

Here is one way to fix team PvP balance issues:
1. 5v5 game
2. both teams have one member from each class
3. match-making system ensuring even (as possible) matches

Each team has advantages/disadvantages of OP/UP classes, thus no team has the advantage.

At the end of the day it comes down to skill and gear - and the match-making system ensures close to even matches, thereby accounting for discrepancies between skill and gear.

Done. Next?
Edited by vorpalblade#1827 on 2/4/2013 10:57 AM PST
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2/5/2013 - Today's Topic: PvP game

Yesterday I talked about a simple and fun way to balance team pvp. I'm going to expand on that today by talking about some team pvp games I'd like to see.

Team Capture the Flag:
1. 5v5 teams (one member of each class per team)
2. flags sit in fortress
3. when flag is picked up by enemy team, it equips to weapon slot - weapon goes into inventory. Hence, flag carrier is substantially disadvantaged. This promotes strategy and teamwork.
4. cannot capture flag while enemy has your flar.
5. first to 5 or team with more captures at end of time wins.
6. skills may not be switched out during game.

5v5 DotA
1. 5v5 teams (one member of each class per team)
2. each player selects one of their PvE items to start with - all other slots are ilvl 63 whites
3. items, upgrades, gems may be purchased at vendors
4. spawning mobs (like DotA)
5. mobs drop gold that may be spent at vendors - gold from regular game does not come in.
5. different vendors also sell upgrades and additional affixes to your mobs
6. skills may be switched out at vendor for a cost.

A lot of things Blizz can do here - I'd like to see something creative here; not just vanilla pvp, especially considering we are almost 9 months out and pvp has not launched. Anyone else have id...who am I kidding, I'm the only idiot who looks at this blog.
Edited by vorpalblade#1827 on 2/5/2013 10:38 AM PST
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2/6/2013 - Today's Topic: crafting...errr...gambling

Crafting in D3 has been a lightning rod for criticism. Personally, I get it. Let me ask: does anyone actually craft in this game? Does anyone on this forum actually buy into this sham? Wha…no? Why? Because crafting sucks? It does suck. It’s BAD. I mean crafting is so bad, even the protoss mothership thinks it’s pointless.

And let me say this, for the record, I have no problem with the 5 of you who do craft. If you're so against using the AH or trade chat to find upgrades, by all means craft. You and Haedrig can go nuts. Craft the AH right out of business. Or not.

Crafting needs to be fixed. I’m sure Blizzard being Blizzard knows this. But they don’t know how. The fact that their best answer is BoA crafted gear is proof they have no idea how to fix the system.

And while we’re talking about the new BoA crafted gear, let’s spend one minute discussing how limp this attempted fix is. It solves nothing. Because, at the end of the day, The AH has rendered crafting completely obsolete. Why waste gold gambling for the perfect roll when you can just snipe it on the AH?

Crafting should not equal gambling. Introduce a gambling vendor for those players that want to gamble. He’d be a great gold sink.

Crafting needs to focus on improving existing items, not creating new ones. Imagine taking a blue with a few godly rolls and improving it by adding additional affixes…sounds good right? Think of the ramifications: there would be a market for low and midrange items which otherwise have no demand.

Change the salvage system: I find a pair of blue gloves with 10% CC. Let me salvage the affix. Let me have a chance to add (part of) that affix to a different item.

That is how you fix crafting.

That’s it. I’m done. Rack me. Out.
Edited by vorpalblade#1827 on 2/7/2013 6:34 AM PST
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