Friday, March 7, 2014

Ok Blizzard, you win

I have been perusing the Diablo 3 expansion announcements and I think Blizzard has actually sold me on buying it.  One of my requirements for that purchase was a guild system and they are finally delivering on that.  My ability to hang out with my friends and have easy group conversations / arrange PUGs / kvetch about idiots on the internet is critical to ongoing enjoyment of the game.  Honestly I think if they had done that one thing right at the beginning my career as a D3 player would have been much longer and the question of buying the xpac would never have been in doubt.

However, that isn't all I like about the way they are going.  Really I love everything right from the new loot system that has deleted the auction hall and made killing dudes the route to better gear to the difficulty setting changes.  The cumbersome and terrible system of going through the same game four times but gated all along the way is gone and now once the game is beaten once we can just dial up the difficulty and play wherever we want.  There are also all kinds of interesting announcements about randomized dungeons and new events and such but without fully testing those I can't really comment.

Still I have some comical things I need to complain about.  How is it that when skills are adjusted some of them are improved in effectiveness by 400%?  You seriously sat on skills that were one fifth as good as they should be and didn't do anything up to this point?  Did you somehow avoid noticing that nobody good ever used them?  Obviously when errors that egregious get discovered there are two possible choices - fix them a little and accept that they are still wrong, or fix them a lot and look incompetent.  I am glad Blizzard is going with looking incompetent but seriously these should not have slipped the net for so long.

I intend to continue to play my Witch Doctor and I am mightily pleased with many of the changes there.  I was concerned that I would be casting Zombie Bears for another six months but they really decided to make other abilities competitive.  Mostly this was accomplished by just buffing the hell out of everything else, which seems like a perfectly reasonable approach to me since Zombie Bear Witch Doctors were just fine and certainly not broken.

Right now I am looking forward to a game where the way to play it optimally is to log on, easily chat with my friends to form a PUG, kill a bunch of mobs, find some gear, craft some gear, and then log off.  Sounds like a plan to me.

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