I wanted to share my thoughts testing the 2.6.9 PTR patch for Diablo 3 Season 21. I spent the majority of my time testing out the Demon Hunter's new set, Gears of the Dreadlands (GoD).
I describe the GoD playstyle as a "stop and go" elite hunting playstyle. Currently it is best played by stopping to do your Primary skill attack, and then using Strafe to travel from pack to pack. Ideally, you travel from elite mob to elite mob, but this isn't always possible, so sometimes you will need to settle for larger groups of enemies. It's also important to start Strafing away from your current location when most (but not all) of the mobs are dead, this way you still generate hatred and continue to proc the 60% damage reduction bonus on your way out. This playstyle also allows you to benefit from area damage (Primary skills cast from Strafe do NOT trigger area damage). It also allows you to benefit from the heal proc from Simplicity's Strength (Primary skills cast from Strafe do NOT trigger Simplicity's Strength healing component), and to also more consistently stand in Oculus circles, either generated by your follower, or by a zDPS Support.
The playstyle struggles with mobs that are easy to kill (1 or 2 shot) and large empty maps. This is simply because you cannot generate Momentum stacks when there are no enemies around, and even if you could, the Hatred cost of Strafe is very expensive.
Is the intent of the set to allow a Whirlwind playstyle? If so, then the set is not built correctly. Whirlwind playstyle does not function correctly. This is primarily because primary skills shot from Strafe do not trigger Focus and do not benefit from area damage.
Stop And Go Playstyle
Is the intent of the set to allow a stop-and-go playstyle, one where you cast your primary skill while standing still, then use Strafe as a movement skill only? This style is more oriented towards elite hunting. The primaries that get cast from Strafe do not benefit from area damage and do not re-proc focus, and thus are only really useful for attacking trash mobs in-between elite packs, or in-between large groups of mobs.
I believe the developer intent here points to the Stop and Go Playstyle, and we will focus on fixing problems oriented towards this playstyle.
Problems with Gears of the Dreadlands
Set text is worded very strangely. This confusion stems from the fact that there are actually two mechanics at play. One mechanic is invisible to the player (Momentum stacks) and the other mechanic is visible to the player (seconds of Momentum remaining, displayed on the Primary skill).
Basing the set bonuses on how many seconds are left is confusing. It makes high level play difficult because it is hard to predict the nature of the Momentum stacks.
If you don't have any enemies to attack, or build Momentum stacks against, you lose your 60% damage reduction bonus, even if you are Strafing! This means you can die in hardcore to environment effects (like poison in Paths of the Drowned). This is very dangerous!
The 4 piece set bonus does not list how much faster you move per Momentum stack. (13%?)
Does not do enough damage with the 6 piece bonus.
Does not provide enough damage reduction.
Cannot fit in Zoey's Secret for damage reduction. (This is probably intended, but worth noting).
When using Strafe-generated-primaries, healing from Simplicity's Strength does not function.
Since the set is based on attacking with Primary skills, it's necessary to fit in Depth Diggers / Hunter's Wrath to do damage. This doesn't allow you to fit in Captain Crimson's. Thus, you are effectively missing the damage reduction and damage increase bonuses that Crimson's would otherwise provide as an opportunity cost. Any damage buff and damage reduction buff to the GoD set should also take this into account.Загрузка...
Killing enemies too quickly will not allow you to build Momentum stacks. This effectively makes GoD not useful for t16 keyrun builds, pool builds, or other speedrun-style builds where you kill enemies in 1 or 2 shots.
The Momentum stacks fall off too quickly.
Strafe itself requires hatred, so even if you have maximum stacks, if you hit an area that has no enemies, you will lose all your hatred and not be able to move quickly anyway. Since the build necessitates that you run other buffing skills and drop Vault, you're left with a very slow moving character, and it's not your fault, and it feels bad.
Tying the damage reduction to Strafe is very confusing. At the start of a GR for example, you need to build your first couple of Momentum stacks, and you won't have any stacks with which to Strafe. Thus, you can't have damage reduction until you build stacks, then Strafe, then stop to do damage again. This interaction is very unsafe for hardcore especially.
Knowing when you have the damage reduction from GoD up is not indicated anywhere except your sheet toughness. Players should be able to understand if they are vulnerable without having to guess (especially for hardcore).
Proposal for fix for GoD set
First, we unify the idea of two separate mechanics (Momentum stacks and seconds of Momentum) into one mechanic that sits on your buff bar, similar to Echoing Fury or Gruesome Feast. This allows players to understand clearly what's happening.
We also increase the damage and damage reduction provided by the set.
Finally we add a little flavor, by using "7" as a Momentum stack maximum. Maybe this is unnecessary, but it's fun, and it kind of adds to the idea of the steampunk/gear idea.
The new set text will read as follows:
(2) Set Gain a Momentum stack when attacking with a Primary skill. Your Primary skills deal 20% more damage per Momentum stack. (4) Set Strafing against enemies will automatically shoot your last used Primary skill. While Strafing, movement speed is increased 20% for each Momentum stack. (6) Set Your primary skills do 20,000% more damage. Momentum provides 80% damage reduction.
Details on how this works:
Momentum is now a buff on your buff bar. You can have a maximum of 7 stacks.
Each stack lasts 7 seconds. Each stack of Momentum is on an independent timer. (Similar to Witch Doctor's Passive: Gruesome Feast)
Each stack of Momentum adds 20% extra movement speed.
Your primary skills deal 20% more damage per Momentum stack.
Damage reduction is given when you have ANY Momentum stacks.
Ninth Cirri Satchel
The design looks like it is intended to make the item hard to roll (like any secondary with %dmg). This is good!
It only guarantees Hungering Arrow pierces once, additional pierces are subject to the 35% chance to pierce (or 50% with rune). This doesn't appear intentional?
Strafe cast Hungering Arrow interaction does not work with guaranteed pierce from Ninth Cirri Satchel.
- Option 1, Design Ninth Cirri Satchel like Balance (two handed monk weapon):
Hungering Arrow deals 450-600% increased damage, and when it pierces it gain 100% critical chance.
- Option 2, ignore the second mechanic entirely, and just up the damage based on Devouring Arrow rune.
Hungering Arrow deals 650-800% increased damage.
Thanks for reading my long and detailed feedback! I've spent about 12 hours total testing and grinding on the new Demon Hunter set, so I hope I was able to provide something valuable.
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© Post "PTR 2.6.9 S21 Detailed Feedback for Demon Hunter Gears of the Dreadlands (GoD) set" for game Diablo 3.
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