Blizzard Explains Diablo III Nerfs, Shares Stats
Blizzard, developer of the recently released and incredibly popular Diablo III, has posted a new update on its community site, showcasing some global gameplay statistics alongside explanations of recent changes. Specifically, the team discussed the considerably controversial alterations to the Demon Hunter, Monk, and Wizard.
- On average players have created 3 characters each
- 80% of characters are between levels 1 and 30
- 1.9% of characters have unlocked Inferno difficulty
- 54% of Hardcore players chose a female character
- The majority of Hardcore deaths (35%) occur in Act I Normal
- The most common level 60 build in the game is only used by 0.7% of level 60 characters of that class (not including Passive diversity)
- The most used runes for each class at level 60 are Barbarian: Best Served Cold, Demon Hunter: Lingering Fog, Wizard: Mirror Skin, Monk: Peaceful Repose, Witch Doctor: Numbing Dart
“Regarding the changes to Lingering Fog, Boon of Protection, and Force Armor: we determined these skills were simply more powerful than they should be, and we felt their impact on class balance and how each class was perceived warranted hotfixes as soon as we were able,” it explained.
“However, we don’t want you to be worried that a hotfix nerf is lurking around the corner every day. If a skill is strong, but isn’t really breaking the game, we want you to have your fun. Part of the enjoyment of Diablo is finding those super-strong builds, and we want players to be excited to use something they discovered that feels overpowered.”
Blizzard also mentioned that some classes were having an easier time in Inferno difficulty than by design, all thanks to the recently nerfed skills. Notably, the studio mentioned that some “underpowered” classes were actually where players were supposed to be on that level of challenge.
They did admit that Inferno does have a nasty tendency to cut massive chunks of health from a player, and that it’s simply not supposed to be that way. Their intention is for Inferno to consistently drain health, not chop away at it in giant segments.
“Right now, there’s a lot more damage “spikiness” occurring than feels right, and that’s one major area we’re looking to adjust in patch 1.0.3. While we don’t have any specifics yet, our design goals are to support and promote build diversity; continue to ensure that a mix of champion packs, rare packs, and boss fights are the most efficient way to acquire the best items in the game; and ensure that all classes are viable in Inferno.”
The other big design issue discussed among players is the controversial loot drops and power of Legendary equipment – Blizzard summed it up by saying that Legendary gear simply isn’t designed to be the best available.
“First and foremost, Legendary items are not designed to necessarily be the best items in the game,” it said. “They’re just one additional type of item as you level up, and they are not meant to be the primary items you’re chasing at the end-game. They can — and should — be exciting to find, but they’re not supposed to serve as the single driving force of the item hunt.
Rare items, for example, have the possibility to roll up ‘perfect’ stats that can, if you’re lucky, outpace the predetermined stats of a Legendary. That’s by design.”
Additionally, Blizzard is buffing these legendary items to make them more useful, but also to keep players from thinking that blue, magical equipment is superior by default, which Blizzard says is a complete misconception.
Blizz is also considering making alterations to make the artisan characters like the Blacksmith more attractive to use and cheaper overall. This would certainly help everyone from using the auction house for everything – which they do.
If you want more stats and info on the recent changes to Diablo III, head on over to the blog post on the official site.