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I wanted to create a thread (and possibly a series of threads) where we as the d3 community could look at a single specific topic and discuss design possibilities. These would be mostly focused around affixes or features that players don't currently find a lot of value in like the "thorns" affix on equipment.
Hopefully this will be a place for players to design and gush some specific creative ideas and hopefully a place Blizz designers and developers can come to look for ideas and inspiration.
Please remain positive of your neighbor's posts as well as in your own. These designs aren't necessarily going to be good or balanced it's simply a community designing brainstorm session.
Now devs have already looked at thorns and are looking for ways to buff the affix to make it useful. http://us.battle.net/d3/en/forum/topic/7895009644#4 but i'm sure the communities designs will give them more options to look at. Since some community designs have made their way or are making their way into the game I think we can add real value to the game by doing this. Can't wait to see what everyone else thinks of.
So here's a few to start:
1. Thorns deals increased or bonus damage based on primary stat. (or based on armor? or vit? that might be interesting)
2. A % of your total thorns damage adds either flat or % damage reduction. (not bad since if you have a thorns build you are likely wanting to be tanky anyways.)
3. Thorns damage has a chance to crit and gains a proc rate. (Now thorn damage would trigger things like LoH, chance to freeze etc.)
4. Combine the affix with another item affix for example: "+200 armor and melee attackers take 800 damage per hit".
5. Your turn.
Edited by DontCry#1139 on 7/2/2013 7:35 AM PDT
I think the easiest thing to do with Thorns is to make it reflect a percentage of the damage dealt to you instead of a set range of values and not have it attached to any other attribute.
There are 4 different Thorns affixes with a total of 15 different level requirements; Thorns, Barbs, Spikes, and Razors. Level 1-35 (Thorns) would roll at 1-3% reflected, Level 36-55 (Barbs) would roll at 4%-6%, level 56-62 (Spikes) would roll at 7-8%, and level 63 (Razors) would roll at 9-10%.
Thorns can roll on 5 different item types; amulet, chest, shoulder, belt, and shield. Having all 5 pieces maxed and equipped could yield 50% reflected damage.
Sounds pretty useful to me, especially if it's able to proc other abilities.
Edited by SirCris#1372 on 7/10/2013 5:26 PM PDT
no reason why thorns couldn't have elemental damage or procs either through runes or item stats.
I think Thorns should just be physical damage. But, If you have an item that has a chance to freeze, fear, chill, life steal, etc., it should be able to proc that ability.
In addition to being weak, thorns just doesn't feel like it does anything. To fix this maybe you could change how a topaz works when socketed in a weapon. In addition to granting thorns bonus, socketing your weapon with topaz would grant the following ability:
Thorned Weapon: X Percent of damage that you take is stored as thorns damage in your weapon, and is unleashed as bonus damage with your attacks and spells. This amount increases with your thorns stat.
This would make thorns/topaz in the weapon powerful for those characters who are taking a lot of damage.
Edited by CynicalMind#1424 on 7/10/2013 5:54 PM PDT
Attach thorns to a coefficient of your character's main defensive stat. For wizards and WDs it would be All resist, for barbs it would be armor, for DHs and Monks it would be dodge. It would be cool if they had some sort of side effect like bleeds or weakening effect on monsters as well, to make it more appealing.
Since nature of Thorns is spikes, so logically the damage should be an initial damage follow by a bleeding damage over time.
So, as you can see, Thorns build is just not viable. We need something different that make an impact but not as much as our skills.
Maybe something that can complement our skills instead of competing.
Thorns imo shouldn't be attached anyway to stats or weapon damage.
Players would otherwise stack all these stats even more to make use of thorns rather than other way round. Thorns should be an alternative to passive damage rather than continuing the already one-sided of dps gearing. Diversify guys. Diversity.
Thorns being able to proc is nice, but the proc shouldn't scale. Imagine a fully thorn geared barb just wade through mobs and froze them without even attacking. That will be so ridiculous.
If LoH, pickup radius, and other commonly treated as trash affix synergize with thorns, I think it might increase it's use.
On the fantasy spectrum, it could gives our character higher resistance to poison and weakness to fire.
Topaz is probably the only thorns related to base on stats, since using it introduce the decision between higher active or passive damage. Then by stacking thorns, it only improve if you have topaz in your weapons. Further, it should behave like Ruby, dual wielding doesn't increase its effect, which in turns promote shields.
Currently, thorns fail when you dodge physical attack and elemental effect doesn't trigger it. If it complements with dodge/block mechanic, it will be so interesting.
Another idea is it could be the magically version of dodge mechanic, chances to avoid magical damage while staying the same in reflecting physical attacks.
Thorns should scale with Armor and/or resistances. It should be more aimed at players who use shields and stack defenses. It would be the first step in making sword and board viable again along with allowing Life Steal to roll on shields and/or fixing life regen and putting that high on shields.
I really like the idea of topaz being the go-to gem for builds that involve a shield. If a topaz in your weapon increased the benefit of stacking thorns, and shields could roll better thorns numbers, this would help.
As there has been speculations about getting the elemental damages to be more of use I would like to see that implemented on Thorns as a good, yet build wise, choice. E.g. Cold DMG in main hand weapon would have a chance to proc freeze effect, etc.
Main stat idea for damage in Thorns would be nice choice, but to offer better build variety for tanking, it should also take Armor and Vitality in calculations. Diminishing returns might support this idea nicely, as you couldn't just stack only one stat to gain maximum benefit.
Proc rate should be somewhere between 0,5 and 0,8, perhaps 0,666 would be pretty optimal for LoH and other useful stats. Also blind, fear and everything else would also proc with this rate, which would add interest to choosing gear with these rolls.
CHC and CHD should work with the base values that you have, e.g. if you have 47% CHC and 275% CHD those should apply as is into weapon damage.
All in all, I'd like to see Thorns to be viable stat for either building your character around it for multiplayer purposes for a tank role, or you could just use it as a side effect in your normal DPS build to gain nice buff to moments when mobs hit you.
There is no point to thorns.
There is no point to being different.
Sure thorns is underpowered and could use a buff, but what's the underlying issue?
There's no situation that ever beckons one to look for something different. The simplest solution is the one that works best: Just blow everything up with your 400k DPS.
Imagine I'm playing a D2 frozen orb sorceress, but there's no cold immunities. There aren't even cold resists. Imagine you can life leech off the orb. Why try a lightning sorceress? Why discover its particular strengths and weaknesses?
The game is so forgiving and simple, you can already solve every problem with just your DPS. People complain that loot is unrewarding, but everything is unrewarding, even exploring the game's mechanics.
That's the boat D3 is in. The problem with stuff like thorns is environmental. There's never any reason to use anything like that.
Percent would be overpowered.
I kind of feel the same way that thorns is useless. It's not that useful for ranged or dex characters. Just very limited use.
I think they should just get rid of it from items along with life after kill. Removing these useless affixes would also help improve item quality making it less prone to rng.
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