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Diablo 3 Patch 2.1 Will Nerf Exploding Palm, Better Rewards For Greater Rifts

Posted on 04 July 2014 by author

Merely a week after Patch 2.1 hits Diablo 3 PTR (Public Test Realm), a group of players managed to finish level 100 of Greater Rifts (its highest level of difficulty) causing a stir throughout the community asking Blizzard to change the way how Greater Rifts scales in difficulty including suggestions on changing two broken weapons (Rimeheart and Furnace) and Monk’s exploding palm skill.

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The Problem On Greater Rift Difficulty Scaling

For casual players who haven’t yet tried Greater Rifts on PTR, the current elite packs and mobs on Torment 6 is only equivalent to Greater Rift Level 25. From that level, the HP and damage of monsters gets to exponential rate. For example, a Rift Guardian at level 100 Greater Rift has 632 Trillion HP and 1.9B Damage.

So how could some players beat it? By using broken items with damage that scales through the HP of its target. An example would be Furnace, as it proc indirectly states: the higher the HP of a monster, the higher its damage will be. Combine this with Rimeheart sword which can instantly kill non-elite monsters like trash mobs and Monk’s exploding palm and players can beat even the highest HP monsters in Greater Rifts.

The problem with this kind of setup is, players are required to only play one specific routine which requires a furnace two-handed mace, rimeheart sword and a Monk who uses exploding palm. This kind of setup totally kills build diversity and makes most players lose interest on finishing Greater Rifts on higher levels.

Blizzard’s Solution

Earlier today, Diablo 3’s Head Game Designer Wyatt Cheng posted his reaction about these group of players who managed to finish the highest difficulty of Greater Rifts, along with that, is his possible solution of changing the way of some broken mechanics found in the game. According to Cheng, they decided that it’s best to just nerf Monk’s exploding palm skill which he thinks is the “biggest offender” compared to Rimeheart and Furnace weapons. From this nerf comes the expected buff to some of monk’s skills which are still undisclosed by the head honcho.

The head designer made a follow-up message on r/diablo about his thoughts if Exploding Palm should be changed. From the looks of it, the skill will definitely be nerfed before Patch 2.1 hits on live server.

Better Rewards On Greater Rifts

The rewards on finishing Greater Rifts on PTR is currently trivial and doesn’t really drive players to become hook over it compared to finishing quick Nephalem Rift runs on Torment 6. Wyatt Cheng has posted their team is looking on to this, in which he stated “The reward needs to be proportional to the effort and time invested. With the mechanics of Rifts changing this is a moving target. In the next PTR patch you’ll see more of the Legendary Gem reward mechanics implemented. The PTR patch after that we’ll start dialing in the reward structure. […] Our goal is for Greater Rifts to be absolutely worth doing, and you should always be trying to clearly quickly towards the highest tiered rift you are capable of – but we’re not there yet.”

To sum it all up, Blizzard is actively watching the progress of players in PTR and will do major changes to fit it through the palate of most gamers. In our previous report, we revealed a PTR can last for 4-5 weeks so there’s still time for Blizzard to tweak Patch 2.1 before it becomes official.



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