Current flaws I see in Diablo 3
1. Legendary loot is boring and the drop rate is too low. I’ve put probably over 100 hours into D3 now(yeah I know, kinda ridiculous seeing as how it’s been out for less than 10 days), and have seen only two legendary drops. Both of which had crappy stats and were really useful to nobody.
If Blizzard is going to make the drop rate for Legendary items so damn low they need to make it so that EVERY legendary drop is worthwhile. Otherwise they need to up the drop rate on legendaries so that you can get more chances for item rolls so that you can actually find a useful item.
I can understand why Blizzard made legendary drops so rare. If they dropped every run, well then, it’s not so exciting seeing a legendary drop. But currently legendary items just lead to massive disappointment for most people because after you identify it you discover most of the time that the stats are crap and your level 60 blue item is better.
Difficulty scaling is frustrating rather than challenging
2. Difficulty scaling is absurd. I can farm Act 1 Inferno without even fear of death. Yet with 48k hp, 63% armor mitigation, 68% resist all, 18% block, 33% dodge I STILL get sh*t on by most elite packs at the BEGINNING of Act II. This doesn’t make sense. If I can EASILY clear the last part of Act 1, then I should be able to at least be viable at the beginning of Act 2.
There’s a difference between challenging and frustrating. A challenging encounter is one where the player must use his skills and really focus in order to win the fight. That means dodging big attacks, running to collect health orbs, avoiding fire, using the right combination of skills to maximize DPS. A frustrating encounter is one where the player’s success depends largely on luck.
And that’s what Inferno elite packs largely come down to, luck. If you’re lucky you’ll get a combination of skills that’s easy to deal with, like teleport/vortex/lifeleach/extra health. If you’re unlucky you’ll get some stupid combination like mortar/arcane/illusionist/fast.
This is why people are frustrated with Diablo. They feel like they’ve lost their locus of control. Very quickly people who have an internal locus of control believe that outcomes are controlled by their actions and thus they can effect their world, and are generally much more content and happy. People with external locus of controls believe that things happen to them and they have no control in the world, and thus feel more frustrations/anger/depression.
What Blizzard has done with the ridiculously difficult elite packs is to move the gamer’s locus of control from an internal one to an external one. Some of these packs no matter how skilled the gamer is and no matter how good their build/gear setup is, there is simply nothing they can do to win. This is FRUSTRATING. Frustrating is bad, challenging is good. Rather than implementing mobs that hit for stupid hard amounts with no way for the player to defend against it, Blizzard needs to implement game mechanics that allow for player skill to play a much larger factor over pure mitigation and dumb luck.
A great example of this kind of design are the boss fights like Belial. Belial is a very difficult encounter. However a skilled player that is very attentive to the game can beat him, and as you die you learn little things to change. This is not the case with stupid elite packs. There is nothing you can do against elite mobs that 1 shot you, pull you in, jail you in fire/poison/lava. There is nothing to learn, except to skip that elite pack. This is POOR game design. This is game design that is FRUSTRATING when the intent is to be CHALLENGING.
A great design of challenging mobs are the guys in Act 1 with the giant maces who telegraph a big attack which a skilled player can avoid, but will likely one-shot him if he doesn’t avoid. That’s challenging but not frustrating. You can learn and adapt. This is how Blizzard needs to implement is challenge and difficulty curve. Not straight up gear-checks and making monsters one-shot you.
Why I am still optimistic
There have been a few blue posts saying that Legendary Items are currently being revamped
This is very promising and will hopefully lead to more useful legendary items being introduced into the game.
As a whole, Blizzard is a responsive company that works hard to balance and tune games
This, for the most part, is a good thing. It can be taken too far sometimes, like WoW, where Blizzards eventually nerfs every encounter into the ground and ruins the challenge. But it’s a fine line that Blizzard needs to walk. It’s difficult to balance encounters to make them challenging for the best players and at the same time do-able for the majority.
There have already been a few blue posts on the Diablo 3 forums responding to the community’s concerns. And in the end if Blizzard wants to keep making money from their games they will have to tune Diablo 3 so that it’s more of a challenge and less of a lesson in frustrations.
From a financial standpoint it still makes sense. Blizzard has already made a massive investment in the development time and cost for Diablo 3. If they don’t fix the issues now they will lose out on potentially hundreds of millions in future revenue from sales of expansions and real-life money auction house transactions.
As we know Activision is powered by green. And ironically enough this might be the one issue that saves Diablo. Blizzard will work diligently to ensure that its playerbase is happy and stays with the game so that the players will pour money into the RMAH and buy future expansions.
In conclusion, Diablo 3 is a great game with great potential if some minor gameplay fixes are rolled out.
Let me know if you agree with this article. What do you think are the biggest flaws/issues that need to be fixed with Diablo 3?