Sunday, 17 December 2017

Diablo was planning loot boxes back in 1994?



In the original design doc by Condor Games they talk about selling randomized loot on disks sold at game stores. Would there have been the same controversy back then as there is now?

Ref: http://www.graybeardgames.com/download/diablo_pitch.pdf


Hate behind (the Star Wars game specifically) was based on products that were advertised as part of the core game when in reality they were sold separately. People of course tend to get angry when they are lied to like this so that's it. Also the approach to play the game dosens of hours in order to unlock a character people expected to play the dosens of hours to begin with, of course, fuelled the fire further. It's okay to unlock things on the go thorough story progression and future DLCs, but vanilla content marketed the way they did, behind a paywall beyond initial cost, is cheating to say the least. Iconic and overpowered items won't help.

Lesson is: Never offer vanilla content behind a paywall beyond initial fee unless either the products are not overwhelming beyond competitive edge of skill or they don't have any symbolical value enough to draw contrary expectations in comparison to what you actually offer; in an environment that does not need the offered items for the players to progress in a game.

Go free-to-play if you want to play it safe. It's okay to offer items with some advantages, but the balance of skill must be kept at least at such moments where players compete against each other. When it comes to iconic characters like Luke Skywalker and other franchise mascots, make sure to clearly mention what your customers have to do in order to play as them in case they are actually sold separately and also separate them from the vanilla game marketing side. Plus, in case I need some in-game currency to pay for anything within a game I play, the products such currency can be used on are considered to be behind a paywall even though the same currency or yet another can be gained by playing the related game or games if the pace is beyond reasonable effort.

 Reasonable effort means to keep the gameplay experience fruitful and fresh to players every single moment as best as you can. One map and one character with a ten hour pace can only go as far as an early grave. Ten maps and ten characters with one hour pace may perform better, but ends in the same grave.

Sunday, 3 December 2017

A simple thing I believe would buff Legacy of Nightmares without making it overpowered.



I’m sure we can all agree that 2.6.1 brought the best balance in the game so far. What I really miss is an opportunity to use LoN to at least some comparison to the 6-piece sets’ power.

The problem with LoN is (as stated a lot times already) that it is extremely hard to balance and simply buffing numbers won’t do any good.

So my idea:
Both rings to have an empty slot for a Legendary power that can be transferred to them ONLY from another ring – CoE, ORotZ, Ring of Emptiness, Band of Might, etc.

Why I think that would work well:
- The biggest damage boosters occupy ring slots – Ring of Emptiness, CoE, F&R, Traveler’s Pledge, Krysbin’s Sentence, so it would be a more natural buff to LoN.
- Playstyles like LoN Bomb Crusader, that are not so loved by the community, won’t be affected, because they already use CoE, and for Crus there are not any other damage boosting rings.
- The 6-piece sets can still use the same ring legendary powers, so it would be easier to balance.

I don’t mind LoN being inferior to 6-piece sets, but at the moment the power gap is just too big. Let me know what you think.

Sunday, 19 November 2017

The true endgame boss of Diablo 3



Is my wife, bless her heart. Diablo 3 is about the only game that she will play with me but gods almighty does it test my patience...

Typical session starts with running through a level/area while she complains about not remembering which skills do what and then proceeds to pause the game and change everything around every 2 minutes. Every level up requires an in depth study of each new skill and rune. Every third item drop requires opening the menu to inspect her new gear.

After about 20 minutes of this we'll end up back at the town and she'll systematically go through every vendors' offerings, and falling any potential upgrades she'll start crafting whole new sets of armour and weapons. "No hunny, critical hit chance and damage aren't important... yep, just follow the green arrows", I say whilst internally crying. And then we get to the good stuff! The mystic, with all those pretty colours and transmogs. Cue another 15 minute montage of trying on every set and colour to find our new favourite look. I mean, who cares if we're gonna get better gear in the next 10 minutes, right? And by the time I quickly sift through my gear and skills she's found herself sucked back into social media apps on her phone and doesn't feel like playing anymore.

Tonight we got from level 22 to 25 and it only took an hour and a half! Lol. Don't get me wrong, I absolutely adore my wife; but I'll be damned if she doesn't turn d3 into a most trying experience!

EDIT: This post is a sarcastic/funny story that I thought people would either relate to or have a laugh with. I don't have relationship problems, everything I've said in the post I've said directly to my wife, and I absolutely love playing with my wife and appreciate her interest in playing with me.

I appreciate everyone's concerns, but I really don't need any relationship advice or suggestions on how to "fix" my wife's playing habits! Lol

Thursday, 16 November 2017

Luckiest chest in my life

Went from regular yangs to primal yang in one chest opening.



Just wanted to share the happiness, good luck with your loot and sorry for the shit post

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

14 Nov Challenge rift EU is the worst so far

I know challenge rifts are usually opportunities to laugh at the terrible build and gear choices. They are still easy enough to get in one or two tries.



This one however.. is just shocking, criminal even. He's wearing an arcstone, gold = xp bracers, harrington waistguard (for all those chests in GR) and restraint without focus. He also has zero cooldown so the wait for akkarats champion is painful.

A true challenge

Thursday, 12 October 2017

Level Requirement Reduced by X as a secondary stat should not be in the game (anymore)


  1. It is the only secondary stat that has 0 effect on a Level 70 character.
  2. There is a cube recipe dedicated to Reducing Levels of Items.
  3. It only goes down to Level 30 (-40 Level Requirement) but it doesn't matter because you can use the cube recipe anyways.
  4. On weapons, you will almost always have a Gem of Ease if you want to level a secondary character (which reduces Level Requirement to 1).
  5. It serves no other purpose than making loot worse. This is not a bad thing by itself, there needs to be bad items to make better items feel more rewarding. However, considering it's the only secondary stat that is 100% useless (while others still have at least some kind of effect) it should be replaced by another stat or removed completely.

What are your thoughts?

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

Diablo 1 partially remade in Neverwinter

I never finished it. Mobs and navigation all worked, but setting up the questlines tricked me up and I stopped working on it. It never released, but I still had such a blast planning it out. I even re-wrote dialogue for the characters and gave them gossip options.

My goal was to make the entirety of the DIablo 1 lore experience through this one Neverwinter quest. I didn't succeed, but I did all the maps, which was a blast!

I hope you guys enjoy it.












Diablo 1 Rogue. Found hidden behind some assets hinted at by a trail of blood.





























The Lord of Terror himself! Diablo! (Ft. sparkly trail)


Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Diablo 3 Hero Tracker App (Android Only)

Thought I'd post a project I've been working on here in an attempt to get feedback so I can improve the application.

I've recently released a Diablo 3 Hero tracking application on the Play Store, that allows you to search for your Battletag (PC only) and view all of your Heros base statistics and items. Although there are apps like this on the store already, I've tried to make it a bit different by giving it a minimalistic feel.

It would be great if I could get some feedback/reviews, I hope you all enjoy the app. It is an early enough release at the moment, so any comments here i'll try to address. The aim of posting on reddit is to try and get a few more users to iron out the bugs in the application.

I am currently working on leaderboards for the app, but they will be included in the next major release, as it's quite a big task to develop in my free time.

If you would like to check the app out, you can find it here! https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.aaron

Thursday, 7 September 2017

The Real Reason Why Sets are Buffed



Everyone is saying how Blizz is doing a great job buffing sets to make them viable, or some criticize them for power creep. etc etc

But the real reason why sets are getting stronger and GR limits are pushed higher is this - 20 years ago, that motha fucking Tyreal destroyed the motha fucking World Stone. The very device that limited the powers of Nephalems. Now that Pandora box has been opened, shits happening everywhere. Its entirely the fault of Tyreal and his Nephalem goons. This is the same shit that Inarius warned us about.

Ergo... in Diablo 4 - player takes the role of Diablo traveling to the dangerous place called Sanctuary battling bloodshard thirsty Nephalems in order to bring peace and salvation to the Burning Hells; which has frozen over under the powers of Angel of Tyranny - Tyreal and his frigid sword Azurewrath.

Sunday, 20 August 2017

Diablo-DooM Crossover



Someone finally went and crossed the two best games of all time. Come on man, I can only get so erect... fucking fantastic, really great job, lots of nostalgia and such a great idea.


I find it interesting that it feels like Diablo 1, not sure what it is, until I took a closer look at the ui elements I really thought it was built on the 1 engine, not 2.

Will be curious to watch this project progress.


Saturday, 12 August 2017

Analysis of Greater Rift Clearing Efficiency Using S10 Data: Comparison between the top and bottom performers (Wizard & Barbarians)



Here is a greater rift clearing efficiency chart that I made using Season 10 data for Barbarians and Wizards (Took me 3 hours). Hopefully, this will provide a perspective to the community not to argue among each other. And I hope this reaches the devs. well since they could use the calculated data in order to balance the classes properly among each other.

Background:

In this thread, I will try to compare the barbarian and the wizard and their power efficiency in clearing high greater rift levels. This will aid to show the existing power creep between the barbarian (the weakest class) and the wizard (strongest class). This will outline the class that are in need of major buff in order to achieve equilibrium at end game.

The Methodology:
  1. Using Season 10 leaderboards (as of today), I selected the top 210 barbarian players from greater rift 100 to greater rift 81 levels.
  2. Wizards needed to be selected differently since they are able to clear way higher than the barbarians so I selected 10 highest performing and 10 lowest performing Wizards at the compared greater rift levels. The total number of the selected Wizard players are 152.
  3. The parameters used in the analysis are Greater Rift Level (A), Clearing Time (B), and Paragon Level (C)
  4. For each toon, a greater rift clearing efficiency coefficient (P) has been calculated as follows: P=A/(B*C) The resulting numbers are scaled up with 1M in order to ease the comparisons.

The Explanation of the Formula:


According to this formula, the efficiency in clearing grifts of a toon is defined as the highest possible greater rift level to be cleared as fast as possible with the lowest paragon level.

Results:

When we look at this chart, we can observe the scattered barbarian performance indicators as blue while the same indicator values are shown in orange for Wizards.

Analysis of Results:


  1. All wizard clears are above 88 in the 1st 1000 leaderboard clears
  2. All barbarian clears are above 50 and 75 in the 1st 1000 leaderboard clears
  3. The clear efficiency coefficient distribution of barbarians at 81 are very similar to the wizards' at 92, which suggests approximately 11 greater rift difference.
  4. Using regression, the means for the barbarians and wizards are plotted in blue and orange respectively.
  5. When these means are compared, it can be seen that the barbarian clearing efficiency mean at 81 is equal to the wizards' at 92 (about 11 grift difference). Also, the barbarian clearing efficiency mean at 85 is equal to the wizards' at 95 (about 10 grift difference).
  6. NEW: Barbarian requires approximately 250 (1250 STR) paragon levels more at mid-late 80s while this becomes 500 at mid-late 90s (2500 STR), which could be even more considering there are only a handful of +90 barbarian clears compared to the wizard +90 clears. Purely paragon comparison suggest at least 6 greater rift levels head start of wizard class. However, paragon comparison is not a good representation for efficiency. As shown in the initial graphs, Wizards finish greater rifts much faster and more effectively at lower paragon requirements, which is expected to amplify the 6 greater rift difference to higher values, as suggested in this study to 10-11 greater rift levels.

Due to the exponential nature of the greater rift difficulties, the clearing efficiency of classes seems to decrease accordingly, but barbarian takes the biggest hit due to the lack of DPS buffs especially after 81-82 greater rift difficulty level (Clears are more consistent only up to 83 after which the clears get significantly less). This can suggest that average barbarian has a cap of -83 Grift performance (unlike some streamers suggesting +90, +95).

Verdict:

Barbarians need a buff equivalent of 10 greater rifts. From the given chart, it is obvious that if the barbarian class is buffed as such, the expected rift clearing performance of the class will overlap the Wizards'.


How you can use the information in these graphs?

Case study examples:

You can use these approximations in order to gauge your greater rift potential considering your paragon levels, greater rift level and desired clear time. For example,
  • Assume that I would like to clear 95 at 14.59 min=14*60+59=899 seconds. Then what I do is to go to the power efficiency graph and find the mean value corresponding to the grift level:

At 95 grift level, class clear efficiency is approximately 75. When we rework the formula for the paragon level, C=(95x1000000)/(75x899)=1409 Paragon levels required for the slowest possible clear (note this is average Joe approximation, better clears can happen due to the associated RNG)
  • Assume that I would like to do grift 100 at 899 seconds. As we can read from the graph, the power efficiency level is about 60 at 100 grift level so: C=(100x1000000)/(60x899)=1853 Paragon levels required for the slowest possible clear (again average Joe approximation).

I am assuming this 60 value stay more or less constant after 100 so let's check Archael's clear: Archael cleared 101 at 13m, 20.950 seconds (800.95) at 4600 paragon (don't know its exact value right now but profile is at this value). So what our graphs estimates for Archael: C=(101x1000000)/(60x800.95)=2102 Paragon clear requirement. So Archael well above satisfied this value. As a result his exceptional clear time.
  • Let's check the new top leader: Clear 103 at 14m 56.416s=896.416sec C=(103x1000000)/(60x896.416)=1915 Paragon level required for barely clearing the grift where this person has 3600 paragon (again well above, but a bare clear).

There will be another one of these analyses within 1 or 2 weeks for Necromancer, Wizard and the Barbarian in order to show the new skew in the existing power creep towards Necro and Wizard. However, S11 data will be very biased since many are favoring towards the Necromancer (given that is is a new addition).

Thanks for reading.

Monday, 31 July 2017

No More Diablo 3 on XP and Vista



It’s very unlikely that there are people left in the world that still play Diablo 3 on XP or Vista computers, but just in case you are one of those people, your worst fears have come true. Diablo 3 will no longer be available on these Windows versions because Blizzard has decided to shut down all support for these platforms effective from October 2017.

If for any reason you are still running your computer on XP or Vista, you may want reconsider your gaming choices. Considering how little alternatives you have, maybe you should start playing lotto or something. The powerball lottery is extremely profitable and considering you don’t need much of a computer to play powerball online, it’s something to think about. The last jackpot was $447 million!

Anyway, even StarCraft 2, WOW, Heroes of the Storm and Hearthstone players will be unable to play on their XP or Vista machines because Blizzard will be shutting down all support for these games too. It’s no old news because there were hints of this somewhere back in February, but considering not many players are affected, it never caught wind properly in the media. Now, it’s official.

XP and Vista have been abandoned even by Microsoft not long ago. In 2009 Microsoft officially stopped releasing updates and providing support for XP, while 3 years later in 2012 it did the same for Vista, one of the most disappointing Windows OS versions. However, despite that back then Blizzard’s policy was to continue providing support because it saw a number of players still using these OS versions to play their games. But, as they say, only diamonds are forever.

Almost a decade has passed since then, and the numbers of XP and Vista Diablo 3 players have declined to a number which Blizzard thinks no longer sustainable to continue spending resources on support. There is no point anymore in doing that. Since then three major Windows releases have been made and many players have upgraded to at least one of those three, said Blizzard in a short official statement.

Windows XP was one of the more successful Windows OS versions that survived almost a decade getting support from Microsoft, and almost two decades after it was released it’s still used by a handful of players. Vista on the other hand was a pure disaster, but gave us it much more successful successor Windows 7. A similar thing happened with Windows 8, which was largely unsuccessful, but gave way for its improved version, Windows 10.



If you are using XP or Vista because you have a potato computer, our hearts are with you. It’s time to upgrade and see how it’s like to have modern technology. If you are using XP or Vista just out of nostalgia and for fun, our hearts are with you too. Time to change to something different and let Diablo 3 rest in peace for these two very outdated OS versions.

Wednesday, 19 July 2017

This Double XP weekend has made me realize something..



I'd take a Double Goblin / Double Bounty weekend 100% of the time over XP. The simple fact that the bonus isn't applied to the closing of GR's makes this buff nearly half effective, on top of the fact that the ones who will benefit the most from this weekend are the people who are botting and exploiting freely anyways.

Farming Paragon levels for Non-Season, which a large portion of the playerbase chooses to avoid, is seemingly pointless. Whereas extra goblins would allow those of us who haven't found the Rainbow wings yet more of a chance at those, or those of us wanting to reroll for that perfect legendary could dedicate our time to stockpiling bounty mats.

Blizzard, I appreciate the initiative but I personally feel like you missed a large opportunity here at a time when the communities trust is already shaky.

Sunday, 2 July 2017

This is what's wrong with Skeletal Mage

A lot of us are complaining about the Skeletal Mage's short duration. Blizzard's design philosophy here was to make the minion build more active - but here's where they went wrong.

It boils down to the psychological principles of loss aversion (ie. people hate losing things far more than they like gaining things) and framing (ie people can either like or dislike something depending on how it is presented).

Damage can be framed in different ways: a direct attack spell, a damage-over-time spell, and a Skeletal Mage are all just forms of damage packaged to appear and feel different. In all three cases, you have to keep hitting a button in order to keep dealing damage - so why is it that it’s fun to keep hitting that button in some cases, but not in others? That’s where loss aversion comes in.

In the case of a direct damage spell, the default state is that you are dealing no damage. You hit the button in order to deal damage, which results in fun. In the case of the skeletal mage, particularly in the end-game minion build, the default state is that you have all your mages out. You are striving for 100% uptime on your army of mages. So when you are pushing that button, it’s not to gainsomething - you’re hitting this button every few seconds to avoid losing your mages. And that’s not fun.

Now it wouldn’t be as big a deal to have to hit this button every thirty seconds or so, but every few seconds turns it into busywork - yes, the playstyle is active, but not in a meaningful or interesting way. "Active" doesn't trump "passive" just by virtue of being active, but by being active in a meaningful way, as with Command Skeletons and Golem.

I explore this in-depth in my full review of the DLC.