Item Synthesis System (Christmas Wish)

Items and Crafting
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All I want for Christmas is...

The Item Synthesis System
Complementary video:

Inspired by the item recipe systems of MOBA games like Dota and League of Legends, breeding from the Pokémon series, Persona fusion from the Shin Megami Tensei Persona series, and the good ol' Horadric Cube from Diablo II. I wonder how a system creating new legendary items from existing ones could work in Diablo III's environment.

This system is 100% fictional and is not a feature in Diablo III: Reaper of Souls.

You can also visit the same thread on for slightly prettier formatting (

Originally I started wondering about an item recipe based system when stash space issues became a widespread topic in the community. I then started expanding on it a little more when players started struggling with finding specific legendary items, namely the notoriously rare ones like Wand of Woh or Starmetal Kukri (due to be adjusted in 2.1.2, but they're still going to be the rarest in their respective item types).

So I imagined a system—dubbed the Item Synthesis system—within Diablo III that allowed players to take a bunch of extra legendaries they have in their stash or on their mule characters and combine them into brand new items. These new items could be synthesis-exclusive, or they can be items you find normally through killing monsters and exploration.
Basic Limitations:
  • Cannot use two legendaries of the same name (must be unique)
  • Cannot use unidentified items
  • Cannot use set items
  • Cannot use legacy items prior to Patch 2.0.1 (vanilla)

The System:
The basic system is simply combining two to six items in any order to form a new item.

Starting from triple combinations (three items used in the synthesis process), one “parent” item can be selected as the core, allowing the player to transfer a stat over to the “child” item. A primary stat can be inherited if and only if the child item is allowed to roll the stat naturally (e.g. a child quiver cannot inherit movement speed bonus). Any secondary stat can be inherited (to be discussed).
This will be UI based so the player can make the decision which stat to inherit. Let's say the synthesized child item normally comes with six random properties (four primaries, one secondary, one legendary power). Transferring a stat from a parent item ensures that one of the random rolls will be the inherited stat. The child item can still be enchanted by the mystic.

The synthesized item depends on the order which items are inputted. Its item type is determined by the final item selected in the synthesis process. Basically, when combining five different items, regardless of the order of the first four items, if the final item is a belt, the synthesized item type will always be a belt. But depending on how the first four items are ordered, it may not always be the same belt (to be discussed).

A player wishes to combine four legendary items: a Mempo of Twilight (helm), a Storm Crow (wizard hat), an Azurewrath (sword), and a Flying Dragon (daibo). The resulting item could be any of the following:

1. A helm (6 combos): if the Mempo was included in the synthesis last. Selecting the Storm Crow first, selecting the Azurewrath second would combine the two into a one-handed sword. The third and fourth selections would be the Flying Dragon and Mempo, respectively, and the pair would yield a legendary helm. The first pairing (Storm Crow + Azurewrath) that yielded the new legendary sword would be paired with the second pairing’s (Flying Dragon + Mempo) new legendary helm, yielding yet another new legendary helm.

First combo:
(Storm Crow + Azurewrath) + (Flying Dragon + Mempo) =
(legendary sword A1) + (legendary helm A1) = legendary helm A2

Second combo:
(Azurewrath + Storm Crow) + (Flying Dragon + Mempo) =
(legendary wizard hat A1) + (legendary helm A1) = legendary helm A3

Third combo:
(Storm Crow + Flying Dragon) + (Azurewrath + Mempo) =
(legendary daibo A1) + (legendary helm B1) = legendary helm B2

Fourth combo:
(Flying Dragon + Storm Crow) + (Azurewrath + Mempo) =
(legendary wizard hat A2) + (legendary helm B1) = legendary helm B3

Fifth combo:
(Azurewrath + Flying Dragon) + (Storm Crow + Mempo) =
(legendary daibo A2) + (legendary helm C1) = legendary helm C2

Sixth combo:
(Flying Dragon + Azurewrath) + (Storm Crow + Mempo) =
(legendary sword A2) + (legendary helm C1) = legendary helm C3

2. A wizard hat (6 combos): just like the helm example, as long as the Storm Crow was included in the synthesis last.
3. A sword (6 combos): as long as the Azurewrath was included in the synthesis last.
4. A daibo (6 combos) as long as the Flying Dragon was included in the synthesis last.

Using the sixth combo in the example, the resulting “legendary helm C3” can inherit a primary or secondary stat from any of the parent items (Storm Crow, Azurewrath, Flying Dragon, Mempo) selected as the core. However, the primary stat inheritance must be a primary stat that can naturally roll on any helm. If the Azurewrath has attack speed, the child “legendary helm C3” cannot inherit the attack speed. However, because Azurewrath’s chance to freeze is a secondary stat, “legendary helm C3” can inherit that secondary stat. The max value would have to be discussed. But it could be interesting if a player decides to stack freeze chance on every single piece of gear. How would it be calculated, though?

The final part of the system involves combining six different items. If all six parent items are of the same type and sub-type, the synthesized item has a chance of inheriting the legendary power from one of the parent items.

A player wishes to combine six legendary bracers: Lacuni Prowlers, Reaper’s Wraps, Trag’Oul Coils, Warzechian Armguards, Ancient Parthan Defenders, and Promise of Glory. The synthesized item will be a new pair of legendary bracers. This pair of bracers will come with its own unique power, but it also has a chance to inherit the legendary power from one of those parent bracers. There is a chance that no legendary power will be inherited. There is also a chance that a legendary power will be inherited and still be nothing as Lacuni Prowlers does not have a true legendary power.

Additional perks:
Using ancient items in the synthesis process increases the chance for the child item to be ancient, as well. The more ancient items used in the synthesis, the more likely the child will be ancient. If no ancient item is used, the chance for the child to be an ancient item is standard.

Synthesizing rare items (at least those weighted to be more rare through drops) will involve combining one or more rare items in a given recipe. The idea here is that if you cannot find a specific rare item, maybe you had the luck of finding another type of rare item. Some people just don't need Lacuni Prowlers, but they really want a Witching Hour. Perhaps a Witching Hour can be synthesized using several legendaries, including Lacuni Prowlers.

Discussion Stuff:
My clan mate ChangBooster took some time to address some of the craziness involved with this system. This is, after all, incredibly broad and bare so there are definitely tons of overlooked concerns. Some things are feasible, others not so much (in fact, not at all), such as having a different synthesized result for every single combination.

Just to give a better picture of things, in a six-item combination, given that the sixth item is locked in place, there are 120 ways to combine the first five items. And that's just for six legendary items. There are nearly 400 unique legendary items in Diablo III. And we're talking two-item combinations, three, four, five, six. And we're not even talking about potentially using synthesis-exclusive items as combination fodder themselves. Does anyone want to calculate how many combinations there are, if there are no repeated results? It's a big number. As a result, there must be duplicate results for different combinations.

So here's ChangBooster's first concern:
The main issue I see with this is the vast amount of combinations. If each combination and order yields a unique item with a unique orange text, Blizzard would basically have to have an algorithm generating icons/skins/orange text affixes. You can't just sit down and design millions (or more) of new items for obvious reasons. So, that is out the window. This leaves us with duplicates. To put it another way, you'd need to have, for example, [[Furnace + Sunkeeper] + Ring] and [[Furnace + Azurewrath] + Ring] yield the exact same ring. And then numerous other combinations are going to yield that same ring. Let's call this the Ring of the Vizjerei (RotV). If I am misunderstanding and this recipe would not always yield RotV and instead yield a random legendary ring, then I guess I am missing the point of having different combinations and the order of said combinations being meaningful. The way you describe it in the video, my understanding is that each combination is a recipe, of sorts.

So there you have it. It isn't feasible to have a unique result for every unique combination (where order before the final item doesn't matter). There must be duplicate results for different combinations. Assuming duplicate results will be a thing:
So, let's say I want to synthesize a RotV with 50% crit damage. I'm always using a ring as my final reagent, so I can just pull that 50% CD through from that parent ring. Because there will be redundant recipes, it really doesn't matter if I used [Wormwood + String of Ears + BK Wedding Band] or [Furnace + Sunkeeper + BK Wedding Band]. Remember, you can't possibly have each combination give a unique result. But as long as I have that 50% CD BK ring at the end and some combination of reagents that yield RotV, I can get my 50% CD RotV. If I understand correctly, I could also get that 50% CD from one of the earlier reagents, let's say one recipe for RotV uses Gloves of Worship, then I can use any BK ring and pull my 50% CD off the gloves.

Yep. He also suggested having "fixed" recipes:
What if you used fixed recipes instead? Let's say Blizz creates 10 (or 20, or 5, or whatever) new items of each slot. Each one has a set recipe with some flexibility. In the last paragraph, I used [Wormwood + String of Ears + BK Wedding Band] as a possible combination for RotV. Let's reduce the specificity of the items down and add an additional ingredient to give us the formula: [Any Staff + Any Belt + Any Glove + BK Wedding Band] = RotV. You could even allow the desired stat to be carried over when the value is too high to roll naturally on the resultant item. i.e. If we want to carry intelligence to our RotV, we could pull the roll from any of the items but if you pull it from the staff or the glove, it could be reduced to be within the appropriate roll range of a ring. e.g. If our glove has a max int roll (750), the crafting window will indicate that our mystery ring (actually a RotV) is going to have 500 int (or max ancient int roll) on it. If the glove only has 736 int, our UI will inform us that the product is going to roll with 490 int, with a chance to roll as a top end ancient roll, should we get an ancient RotV. Perhaps one Sword recipe is [Any Bracer + Any Amulet + Exarian]. This could have a weaker legendary power as you could churn them out with ease. Then maybe we've got a sword recipe that is [Any Ring + Any Boots + Any Glove + Any Shield + Shard of Hate]. This item could be significantly stronger. Maybe cap this system at 5 total reagents to avoid confusion.

Now the next concern ChangBooster had was this:
Moving on the the second system. What you essentially have here are two different systems. The "anything goes" system and the "combine 6 items of the same type" system. The combine 6 items system is based on carrying over a legendary property. Only have one recipe (product) per item type. e.g. Six Wizard Hats always yields a hat called Jaetch's Ninja Mask (JNM). Because our goal here is to bring one legendary property from the original six, the additional legendary property on JNM can't be too OP by itself. Our result gets four primaries, JNM's natural orange text, an orange text from a reagent or a blue text secondary from one of the six hats used. Let's say we want the Swami property on our JNM. This is only giving us a 1/12 chance of getting the affix we want. But we can do it every time we find a Swami and five other hats. One could conceivable craft a Swami'd JNM pretty often. A dedicated player could craft a good (i.e. good primaries) Swami'd JNM every couple months, perhaps.

The idea is that trying to get a six-combo synthesized item to spawn with double legendary powers will be ridiculously hard to do, let alone inheriting the legendary power you actually want, on top of whether or not you care if the synthesized item is ancient or not. That's tough if you want perfection. I think that's a good thing, though. And like ChangBooster said, a dedicated player could probably synthesize a good one every couple of months. Probably.

Moving on, his final concern is this:
My final thought is that I think this would have a negative impact on stash space. People are going to be saving up all these items to use to make, say, a Bracer with the Strongarm property. A way to alleviate this could be to store the reagents at the mystic. For those of you who have a seasonal char that has been rolled over to NS on the PTR, you know your message box is full of all the items that were in your stash. It's basically an alphabetical list categorized into "legendary," "set," "consumables," etc. (we wouldn't have those categories since we are only dealing with legendaries) I propose you take an item that you know you want to use as a reagent to Myriam and irrevocably add it to her bank of reagents. This destroys the physical item, it can no longer by equipped or salvaged and, most importantly, removes the item's unique ID from the database since it's now just text strings of the affixes in the bank. It now appears in an alphabetical list (that can also be sorted by gear slot) and it can be added to any applicable recipe, at which point it is removed from the bank. You can add items straight from your inventory to a recipe or pull them from Myriam's bank. If you realize you added an item you don't want in your bank, like if you already have a gg RotV, you would be able to discard an unneeded staff. The bank would have finite space of perhaps 200 items. The interface warned you that you can never get the item back when you added it to Myriam's bank, so no one can complain that your only option is to destroy it forever. Maybe it can refund a forgotten soul just for the QQers.

I thought about this as I was making the video. While one of the goals for this system is to free up stash space, I could also see players hoarding even more in order to maximize their chances to synthesize an awesome item. The Strongarm example is a good one, considering how powerful its legendary power is. So for anyone wishing to synthesize specific six-combo legendary bracers, they may end up hoarding a dozen Strongarm Bracers. And that's just one piece in the synthesis recipe. They'd also need five other like bracers.

This is a situation where the proposed solution could in fact make the original problem even worse!

But those were ChangBooster's thoughts. What do you think?

I have some of my own concerns, too, such as whether or not making any secondary stat transferable to a synthesized item. It could be ridiculous. Having max resources in all 13 item slots? Having chance to freeze, blind, stun, etc. on all pieces? Sounds fun, but it could be game-breaking.

Again, this is just a Christmas wish. Could be something worth exploring. Could definitely be tweaked and adjusted, and definitely simplified a little.
Diablo III MVP | Forever a Wizard
YouTube Channel:
Twitter: @Jaetch | Clan Page:
This is very interesting. I'm still reading through the DiabloFans article, trying to wrap my head around the implications a system like this would have.

I think Chang's idea about "fixed recipes" is more feasible. I can't imagine Blizzard creating an algorithm to give each new item its own unique skin, name, and orange text. That's a ton of programming, and the idea that these would be generated randomly is somewhat contrary to the nature of Legendary items.

Like you said, the greatest concern with either system would be stash space. Hopefully, that issue will be addressed soon.

I did like how Chang snuck in a reference to your Ninja Wizard Build from vanilla. Come to think of it, that was essentially the first "Play Your Way Thursday", about a year ahead of its time.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to everyone!
12/15/2014 10:53 AMPosted by WordMaster
I did like how Chang snuck in a reference to your Ninja Wizard Build from vanilla. Come to think of it, that was essentially the first "Play Your Way Thursday", about a year ahead of its time.

Haha, yeah, I got a kick out of that, too. I recently remade that spec for RoS. Could clear T6! Except it takes like five minutes to down the RG :P
Diablo III MVP | Forever a Wizard
YouTube Channel:
Twitter: @Jaetch | Clan Page:
I just came here immediately after watching and commenting on your youtube video to make sure it is listed here too... Awesome, just awesome, I hope that this post gets noticed by devs and CMs.

this geos to show that there is a solution for this game that does not center around balancing and rebalancing current systems. a solution that adds a sense of progression, not just in power but also in freshness in what u currently receiving..

Thank you...:)
any fresh ideas are nice but how to implement something like this if they can not handle the current itemization properly?
Definately an interesting idea. +
12/15/2014 03:12 PMPosted by Wichtelman
but how to implement something like this if they can not handle the current itemization properly?

we all want to find out the answer for that question!
This will make the game fun and create actual depth to gearing process.


an idea so good, we're certain it wont happen.
At this rate, this might be implemented in Diablo 10.

+1 regardless, pretty sweet system.
Nice idea, but way too complex for a casual game like this. According to Blizz, D3 is not meant to have any depth.
My post history is basically 1200 posts over the past few years of me describing how painfully stupid the developers are.

And its threads like these that prove it to be true.

Lets wait six months for golden borders everyone, because thats what the "professionals" are giving us :) yay!!!

on a scale of 1 to 10 this video gets about 57,000

PHENOMENAL presentation.

PHENOMENAL experimentation.

They my delete this thread. but they cant delete the youtube video.

Sorry if I get angry everyone....but just keep watching videos like this and reading threads about items.....and keep letting your mind wander while we all sit around and wait for golden borders....

GOLDEN. BORDERS. And a few hundred main stat......

just think about that for a while.....
When I see a great post like this with a "reported" mark, I sometimes wonder what the post was reported for.
You are the Mesias!
That will make a diference with the trash items that we got, always ending as souls u_u.

With this system you can really improove your gear!
Hope that this system came along with a patch or an expansion, but the community knows...
Regards & Credits to "Jaetch #1861".




Cool video though.
12/15/2014 05:28 PMPosted by Oxygenetic
This will make the game fun and create actual depth to gearing process.


an idea so good, we're certain it wont happen.

thats about right. they will look at it and say it is too expensive and time consuming a project to undertake.

i like the idea too, but the entire fan base could like the idea and that wouldnt change their minds.
You guys still have hope for this game???
12/15/2014 07:55 PMPosted by saltybeard
You guys still have hope for this game???

I would pay money to see the true true actual real live numbers of the players and the population and the login totals and the honest level of activity this game experienced in its drawn out depressing run.....

I still have hope because RPGs and strategy games of any flavour still interest me heavily..this game in my opinion sucks way harder than it should..
Hi Jaetch,

i appreciate your idea. I hope devs will see this thread.

Good job,

Nice video, great idea, makes me think about the grinder in borderlands the pre sequel.

there you combine 2 legs with a purple item, to get a legendary item, same item sort as the purple (if i remember correctly, its been a while).

anyway +1 on the idea
I suggested something similar, albeit way less sophisticated some time ago.

It could allow even rares and blues to become moderately relevant, instead of instant salvage. As I understand it, you would be using legs for their unique legendary properties, but I think both blues and rares could help weight the raw stat portion of the item towards something more like the player needs. Even superior white items could be added as the core (as per your description), giving this quality tier an actual meaning and functionality.

Thanks for taking the time to elaborate such a thorough exposition of this idea. It really helps visualize it's potential. Hopefully the design team won't swipe it under the rug.

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