Does anyone recognize the pointlessness of these threads? Take a look at what has come of the simple Skill Calculator.
Honestly, it's mind boggling how you people have missed the MASSIVE accomplishment blizzard has made making this skill system.
I have 5 friends who will play this with me the day of release, we're already drawing lines as to our two 3 party teams. The reason I mention this is becuase none of us (excepting one) have decided what build we're going to use, let alone what class.
I've yet to see us make two builds the same for the same class, out of about 100 builds we've linked each other and bragged about since the calc's release. And when I say 'the same' I'm not being sneaky, we've yet to copy more than half the same skills for any build, and always the runes and passives come out slightly different.
In the end what you people want is a MATERIAL measure of differences. What blizzard has handed you is a much more meaningful SPIRITUAL measure of differences. (When I use spiritual it has no connotation in this context to religion)
The spirit of this current skill setup is wonderful. We don't need childish and complicated effects to accomplish what we already have.
Come release will builds congeal a bit? Probably, but even then, I see every ability scaling, I see blizzard commenting on a complete disregard to balance... I don't think come release we will have any issue to require an active element that forces us to make a material difference in builds.
Note: The 31-60 "deadzone" makes me laugh. It's all opinion of course, so I don't dare question it, but for me, personally? After normal difficulty in diablo 2 it was ALL about gear and the skills i had chosen getting stronger. I see no difference between this system (for d3) and the system in d2. So quit your belly aching. You just have a misplaced desire for material differences when they don't even matter.
PS: Blizz, if you read this just know that I feel like the system you have in place is the greatest step in gaming yet. It's so unorthodox and yet when you step back and look at the big picture it has the potential to actually create massive diversity. My god!
If you quote me in any way, quote my statement on the spirit of this skill system. The diversity and intensiveness of this skill system is greater than any other game I've ever played. And the game isn't even out yet.