Shhh, no one tell Mooglegem that I stole her name. This is Mooglie, my monk for Diablo 3 season 2. I’m still fairly low level, but she’s been fun so far.
gem and I recently beat Reaper of Souls! I know it’s been out for a long time now, but we stopped playing for a while.
When we started the game that evening, we were on a quest to find Malthael. It was pretty obvious that we were near the end of the game, but I didn’t realize just how close we were.
Honestly, it felt a little anticlimactic. I wish there were more mechanics to the final fight. Like a lot of Diablo III, it just seemed a bit too easy. Yes, I know you can make it more difficult, but really, we should struggle a little. Also, I think they should have drawn out Malthael longer. If they’re going to introduce a large, new story element – an angel turning against humanity – they should let that simmer for a while.
After killing Malthael, we decided to step into Adventure Mode finally. As we collected our bounties, we came across a Rainbow Goblin!
I knew what was coming, but Whimsydale came as a huge surprise to gem! I’m glad she got to experience it like that, because she seemed pretty excited.
Look how cute that map is!
By the end of the night, my Demon Hunter, Dara, was in the low fifties. I’m not sure what’s next, but I’ll probably be playing a bit more D3 now.
It’s a new week, so I’m done playing the heroes from last week – Gazlowe, Nova, Stitches, Diablo, Kerrigan, and Tyrande.
Gazlowe is a specialist hero that can collect scrap from destroyed structures that restores mana and reduces cooldowns, place turrets, shoot lasers, and more. He was fun even I wasn’t overly effective with him. His Deth Lazor ability was interesting because it charges. When you first hit the button to activate it, it begins to charge. The longer it charges, the more damage it does and the further its range. I was always tempted to let it charge fully, but I should learn to fire it off faster.
I did significantly better with Nova than I do with most other heroes. In fact, I’d never stayed alive as long as when I used her. Whenever out of combat for two seconds, she cloaks, and she can also spawn a hologram decoy (and doing so doesn’t break her cloak). These abilities make it easier to hit and run. Moreover, it makes it fun to hit and run. I really wasn’t expecting to like her very much, but playing her was great.
Stitches is a warrior abomination that can Gorge on enemies, consuming them and trapping them in his own stomach. Why would I need to say anything else about this hero?
Diablo is another warrior hero. He has a variety of abilities including AOEs, a charge, and more, but I particularly liked his Overpower ability that slams a hero behind him, dealing damage and stunning. Displacing an enemy, even if just for a split second, can be useful. Also, it was fun just being Diablo. His lore in the game also says “…and his gender… malleable.”
Kerrigan’s an assassin that seemed rather plain to me. She was okay while I used her, but nothing stands out about her in my mind. She can leap to enemies and pull them to her as well, which is always useful. I don’t think I’ll be playing her much more.
The support hero Tyrande was the last hero I tried of the bunch. She can heal herself and others, send an owl across the map, revealing and damaging enemy heroes, damage and stun enemies in an area, and more. I liked her, but I think I like all the support heroes. It’s hard to pick one that clicks with me best. I have to admit, getting a pet owl is pretty cool.
Conan plays WoW, talks to the devs at BlizzCon, Adam Koebel, WoW Insider, 11/21/13.
This is hysterical! You should definitely watch it.
Exclusive first look at Christie Golden’s new novel, War Crimes, Anne Stickney, WoW Insider, 11/18/13.
Christie Golden writes fantastic Warcraft novels. I can’t wait for this one.
Diablo III transmogrification coming to WoW, Anne Stickney, WoW Insider, 11/14/13.
Doodlegnome answers all of your Warlords of Draenor questions, Scott Helfand, WoW Insider, 11/17/13.
Here’s everything you really need to know about WoD answered in cute doodle form.
Know Your Lore, Tinfoil Hat Edition: Timelines, timeways, and Karazhan, Anne Stickney, WoW Insider, 11/17/13.
Another article on time travel. It basically explains, yet again, that Garrosh will be creating an alternate timeline that interacts with ours and not changing our past.
Flying Can Take A Hike, Rongar, BlizzPro, 11/14/13.
Rongar doesn’t mind waiting for flying.
Outlandish Memories, JD Kenada, Amateur Azerothian, 11/14/13.
JD Kenada looks back at the good and bad in Outland.
Either it was a slow week or I’ve been in an uninterested mood!
Should Ordos Be Available To Everybody?, Booka, BlizzPro, 9/13/13.
Personally, I think it’s fine to have restricted content. However, I think the general plot and assets should be available to everybody. That’s one reason that, while I don’t particularly enjoy running LFR regularly, I’m very thankful for it’s inclusion in the game.
Blizzard to shut down Diablo III auction house, Sarah Pine, WoW Insider, 9/17/13.
I didn’t enjoy the AH, and I’ve really enjoyed the PS3 version of Diablo III. I think this is a good move.
Over the weekend, I played local co-op Diablo III with my roommates on PS3, finishing the first act. I went into it expecting that it would be fun but inferior to the PC version. I was wrong. This is the better version.
Of course, the number one aspect is that it allows local co-op. It was a ton of fun to play with my roommates together like that. Each player gets a different colored circular indicator at the bottom of their hero so they can easily identify themselves. Sure, there were times at which I was looking at the wrong character, but it wasn’t a huge problem. If one player isn’t moving and the others run to the right, the one who wasn’t moving will run along with them. If that character gets trapped, it’ll teleport to the party. This is just fantastic. It was easy to eat and have a good time and not worry about stopping the group. If you’re actively in control of your character, it won’t happen. It works flawlessly.
There are a few other changes that I really liked. Not only did they remove the auction house, but they increased drops to compensate. It’s much better. I want to look for loot on the bodies of my enemies, not an auction house. The inventory system was also changed. Instead of having a grid and requiring inventory-Tetris, the inventory now has 60 slots, and each item takes one slot. You can carry much more, and you don’t have to worry about the size or shape. In addition, it shows if an item is an upgrade or downgrade in a few key stats when you select it. You’ll easily see whether or not the new weapon does more damage for example. Of course, you can view the full stats too and make your decision.
The only downside is that you now have to aim with a stick rather than target with a mouse. It’s not a deal breaker, but you do lose some accuracy. Blizzard did a surprisingly excellent job porting D3 to consoles. Console gamers are into a treat, and even if you have the PC version, if you like local co-op, you’ll love this.
What If Paladins Had Stayed Alliance-Only?, Rohan, Blessing of Kings, 8/19/13.
I love this. The Alliance story was the story of their paladins. What if paladins had stayed Alliance-only and shaman had stayed Horde-only? What if Death Knights had been given to the Horde, and monks to the Alliance? It’s an interesting article.
Thoughts on Garrosh Hellscream, Rohan, Blessing of Kings, 8/14/13.
Why do the orcs want to kill Garrosh? Why do players hate Garrosh but like Sylvanas? Rohan thinks that in lore, the orcs in general aren’t turning on Garrosh. As players, we like Sylvanas because she’s “all cool and calculating” while Garrosh “is a thug.” Players are more likely to identify with Sylvanas.
Window Shopper, Prinnie Powah, That Was an Accident!, 8/14/13.
Be careful with whom you /flirt.
Patch 5.4, flexible raids, dailies and more with Tom Chilton, Anne Stickney, WoW Insider, 8/16/13.
Chilton’s discussion of the Timeless Isle and Blizzard’s pull away from dailies are particularly interesting.
Patch 5.4 confirmed for release on September 10th, Adam Holisky, WoW Insider, 8/21/13.
I’m glad we have a little more time to Ahead of the Curve: Lei Shen for raid team members who missed our kill.
Know Your Lore, Tinfoil Hat Edition: The Dark Below, Anne Stickney, WoW Insider, 8/18/13.
Speculation on what The Dark Below could bring.
Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls Lore Speculation, Neinball, BlizzPro, 8/14/13.
Reaper of Souls Lore Speculation Part 2: The Usual Suspects, Neinball, BlizzPro, 8/16/13.
Reaper of Soul [sic] Lore Speculation Part Three: Eternities of Conflict, Neinball, BlizzPro, 8/19/13.
Reaper of Souls Lore Speculation Part Four: Oh, The Places We’ll Go, Neinball, BlizzPro, 8/20/13.
Reaper of Souls might have been unveiled, but I still think these speculation articles are great.
Diablo III Expansion Speculation, Rohan, Blessing of Kings, 8/15/13.
Rohan’s wish list includes paladins, necromancers (or maybe druids), a no-trade, no-AH mode, and the ability for hardcore characters to become normal characters upon death. I think the no-trade, no-AH mode would be nice, although Blizzard would never do it, and the hardcore change would be great.
What If: Cult of the Mechanical, Matthew Rossi, WoW Insider, 8/15/13.
Rossi explains how awesome it would be if we had an expansion focused on Gelbin Mekkatorque embracing technology and shunning the divine.
Old Enemies: OOC Epilogue, Anna, Too Many Annas, 8/15/13.
Even if you haven’t been reading this story, this is an interesting article about “assumed RP.” I didn’t really know anything about this, but it was a fascinating read.
Will we see an ability purge?, Matthew Rossi, WoW Insider, 8/14/13.
If we’re going to continue to get new abilities every expansion, an ability purge seems important to me.
This epic crafted Frostsaber has ridden off with our hearts, Elizabeth Harper, WoW Insider, 8/15/13.
This is so cute!
Diablo 3 to get new features, fore free, in pre-expansion patch, Adam Holisky, WoW Insider, 8/22/13.
No surprise here. Changes to the core mechanics will happen even if you don’t purchase Reaper of Souls.
WoW Archivist: WoW’s first legendary quest line, Scott Andrews, WoW Insider, 8/16/13.
A retrospective on the first legendary quest line, the series to obtain Thunderfury, Blessed Blade of the Windseeker.
Know Your Lore: A Precarious Position Part 1 – Horde, Matthew Rossi, WoW Insider, 8/14/13.
What will happen to the Horde after the Siege of Orgimmar?
Blizzard officially announced Reaper of Souls as the expansion to Diablo III at GamesCon on Wednesday morning. Normally I’d write a Suggested Reading post for Thursday, but I had to give this its own post.
Like most people predicted, Malthael, formerly the Archangel of Wisdom, returns as the Angel of Death, intent on stealing the Black Soulstone. As usual, Blizzard creates an exciting trailer that has be ready to play Reaper of Souls. I got the announcement from Eldorian’s post at BlizzPro.
- the crusader, a new class, a holy knight;
- an increased level cap at 70;
- a new loot system in which there are less drops but they’re more likely to be optimized for your character;
- changes to the paragon system;
- loot runs, short, randomized dungeons;
- transmogrification and enchants through the mystic
Most of my friends weren’t happy with Diablo III, but I really enjoyed it. Part of this probably came from the fact that I only played through it once. I finished normal as a demon hunter, and afterwards, I tried a demon hunter in hardcore as well a monk in normal. Neither made it to Act II. I didn’t really consider this a problem as I wasn’t expecting to continuing progressing like I did in earlier installments. I think this probably saved me from seeing problems other saw. Whatever the reason, I really enjoyed Diablo III, and Reaper of Souls looks great. I had no problems with the tone of the core game, but I’m looking forward to this darker feel as well.
Hopefully it’s not too far away!
Five reasons patch 5.2 will pull you back into WoW, Elizabeth Harper, WoW Insider, 3/6/13.
Harper provides a nice summary of 5.2 content.
Patch 5.2 official patch notes, Adam Holisky, WoW Insider, 3/5/13.
If Harper’s article isn’t enough information for you, this might be for you.
On the Broken Battleground Scaling of 5.2, Cynwise, Cynwise’s Warcraft Manual, 3/7/13.
Cynwise looks at how battleground scaling has only made balance worse in the lower-level brackets.
Diablo 3, the Auction House, and Efficiency, Rohan, Blessing of Kings, 3/2/13.
Rohan discusses the dangers of increasing efficiency too much. He also claims that there shouldn’t be shortcuts a game’s “central fun.” It’s a great idea. It also reminds me of some tweets I saw by Bennett (@bfod) who said “well, until they charged me money to skip over it, I wasn’t thinking of playing the game as being ‘grind’” and “since they’re charging money to skip it, I know it is grind. Even the developers think of it as grind. Playing it is a penalty.” He goes on to say “here’s how it works-if you pay to play more, you’re seeing play as being valuable. If you pay to play less, you’re thinking of it as a grind” (2/27/13).
Know Your Lore: Jaina Proudmoore and the Kirin Tor, Anne Stickney, WoW Insider, 3/3/13.
Wondering what’s up with Jaina lately? Then pay attention to the game you pay to play! Or read this.
Know Your Lore: Aethas Sunreaver and the founding of the Sunreaver Onslaught, Matthew Rossi, WoW Insider, 3/6/13.
This guy got totally sweet this expansion. Yup.
The Decline of Rogues, Rohan, Blessing of Kings, 3/3/13.
Rohan has some ideas on why rogues are on the decline.
Secret Areas of Warcraft: Where developers go to play, Sarah Pine, WoW Insider, 2/28/13.
Secrets always fascinate me.
What does legendary really mean?, Anne Stickney, WoW Insider, 2/28/13.
What legendary means has been changing.
Eberron and beyond: Seven years of Dungeon and Dragons Online, Justin Olivetti, Massively, 2/28/13.
Olivetti looks back at DDO.
gem and I have been playing a bit of hardcore mode after finishing our first playthrough of normal. It’s a little dangerous to be doing that with four roommates who may begin to download at any time, but I try to keep an eye on my latency. We reached level 10 recently, which honestly surprised me a bit. Don’t get me wrong; I’m relieved. I just figured our Internet would have dropped or something by now.
We’ve killed Leoric twice now I think. After defeating him, we reloaded at the previous quest to allow us to farm a little before proceeding. Better safe than sorry. I think we might play up to the Butcher and then restart before actually fighting him. I’m also anxious to try out other characters and to push into nightmare on my demon hunter, so who knows what we’ll end up doing.
Okay, cool cutscene so far. Everything’s fine.
Hehe, well, I’m immature. I should keep my mind out of the gutter. I mean, Zoltun Kulle just wants the spell to work. Blizzard would never make a sexual joke.
Okay, maybe I’m not immature. Maybe that’s exactly what Blizzard meant. Now that he’s… finished… how does he feel?
While not as obvious as the previous screens, this could be considered a description of one’s feelings after sex.
It sure seems to me that there is a lot of sexual imagery in this scene. From a biological standpoint, sex is used to procreate, to create life. It allows a new life to be born. In this part of Diablo III, the ritual is used to resurrect, to revive life. It allows an old life to be reborn. How fitting.
Also, I wasn’t the only one laughing. Moogle was definitely giggling as well.
I found a legendary this weekend. I’m not sure how common they are at this point, but I thought I’d share. I found the Burning Axe of Sankis, and it does have a cool model. I’m not going to be using it on my Demon Hunter, but I equipped it so the model could be seen.
The model is important because legendaries have unique models in D3. As the name stated, it’s a fiery axe, and the axe looks pretty cool in motion.
There seems to be some concern over the quality of legendaries. There have been complaints that they’re not as good as rares; Blizzard’s response has been that people have been comparing rares of higher level than the legendaries. I’m not really sure what to think. All items have random attributes in Diablo 3, so maybe the problem is a combination of the rarity of legendaries and the chance of getting good stats on them when they’re found.
Here are the stats on the one I found:
- 35.1 DPS
- 19-35 Damage
- 1.30 Attacks per Second
- +4-9 Fire Damage
- Adds 3% to Fire Damage
- +21 Intelligence
- +13 Fire Resistance
- Each Hit Adds +16 Life
- An obsidian axe wielded by the mad Sankis as he turned on his own men inside their fortress. Even as he burned to death himself, he would not stop his attacks on those he had once ruled.
After about 28 hours of play time, gem and I completed Diablo 3 normal mode. I played a demon hunter, and she played a monk. Demon hunter was very enjoyable throughout the game even as the skills changed. For my next go, I think I’ll try the monk, although trying something else might be nice because I saw gem play the monk. A barbarian might also be fun, but I’m under the impression that it’s a very simple class. Perhaps I’m just stereotyping, but I don’t want to play something that’s not complex enough to be fun. There must be some complexity to them though, right?
Here’s our fight against Diablo. It’s low quality; I wasn’t really showing anything in particular and wasn’t planning on posting it when I recorded it.
Well, because you asked so nicely, Arioch.
Note that this post may contain some spoilers for Act I.
I died for the first time tonight. Damn you, Butcher. Blizzard brought the Butcher back as a boss in Act I. The fight itself was good I think, but I still don’t think he really needed revisiting. If they had simply named him something different such as The Furnace Master or something, it would have been much better. He could have been a boss created in homage to the Butcher. Yes, they talked about butchers are actually a type of demon, and this is much better than saying the Butcher was revived. Regardless, I’m making it sound like I had a large problem with it. It was fine; I just think it could have been better.
Soon after I died, gem died as well. We went for a second go at it, and this time gem died first. Luckily, I managed to get her back up, and we killed him.
Tyrael is freakin’ great. I won’t say why for now. Seriously, I’ve been a huge Diablo fan, so I’ve liked Tyrael, but now I love him so much more. What a cool cutscene!
And now it’s time to explore the dessert in Act II.
I posted a blog entry over on Game Boyz about Diablo III in general. While I usually only post at most once per day here, I’m not going to count this announcement. In fact, there’s a nice post about achievements in WoW and D3 scheduled to be posted at 8:00 tomorrow morning! Feel free to check out the blog at Game Boyz!
On Saturday, gem and I started playing Diablo III. She was going to create a witch doctor but ended up rolling a monk. I played a demon hunter in the beta, planned on playing a demon hunter, and, well, did play a demon hunter. So far we’re really enjoying the game. The story is much more intricate, and the skill system is different than both Diablo 2 and World of Warcraft. Currently we’re maybe halfway (or so?) through Act I. For those of you playing, we’ve fought the spider queen boss. The screenshot above was taken right after killing King Leoric.
I think the most important thing to consider is whether or not the game is fun, and it has been. I enjoy the visual style, which has a hand-painted look to it. Although different, it reminds me of the background of Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood. Giving Town Portal as a spell that can be cast as often as needed is very cool change. Being able to identify items at will without using a scroll of identification (or something similar) is a cool change, but it makes me wonder why some items need to be identified at all. Is it because unidentified items can be sold (providing a sort of gamble)? I have no idea.
The skill system is odd. As you level, you unlock new skills and runes, which modify skills. Basically, talents and glyphs from World of Warcraft. However, you don’t really make permanent choices. You can make changes at any time with a short cooldown to prevent, I’m guessing, changing choices during combat. You have a maximum of six skills in use at a time once all slots are unlocked. I have some mixed feelings on the skill system, which I’ll talk about in another post.
There were some big improvements to the general social system. Achievements are a cool addition to the Diablo series. While a lot of them are boring, there are some fun ones. I haven’t actually counted or anything, but I hope there are a decent number of ones that are actually achievements. I like achievements that task you with performing a task a certain way as opposed to ones like “Reach Level 10.” Having achievements be account-based rather than character-based seems to work well. I’m sure it’ll be similar in Mists of Pandaria, so I’m glad to find that I’m happy with them. I do kind of wish that we’ll eventually be able to see achievements across games though. I’ve been meaning to post about achievements in general, which, who knows, maybe I’ll get around to doing. Battle Tags are an improvement over the Real ID system but are still fundamentally flawed. I actually have a post on this already written, and it’ll get posted soon. I like that in addition to large toasts acknowledging earned achievements for a player, there are now smaller toasts above the chat window for achievements earned by party members. Achievements are also broadcast to your friends now I believe, which is a cool addition.
While we’ve only played a rather small chunk of the game, I’ve enjoyed it so far. It’s interesting to see Blizzard’s knowledge from World of Warcraft added to the mix and bits and pieces of things to expect in Mists of Pandaria. I’m anxious to try hardcore mode, and I can’t wait to try PVP when they release it!
Despite getting the standard edition of Diablo III for free with the WoW annual pass, Moogle and I picked up the Collector’s Editions. How could we not with all the cool things offered? You can see everything you get in the unboxing video above. In addition to the game itself, you get the following bonuses:
- Diablo III aesthetic artifacts (in-game)
- World of Warcraft Fetish Shaman pet (in-game)
- StarCraft II portraits (in-game)
- Diablo III soundtrack
- Diablo III behind-the-scenes DVD
- Diablo III art book (gorgeous)
- Diablo skull USB stick case with soulstone 4 GB USB stick (that comes with D2 and D2: LoD)
Once again, Blizzard provides a fantastic collector’s edition (except I want a mousepad!).
At first, Moogle wanted to play Diablo 2 before we jumped into D3, but she gave up on that idea. She plans on playing a Witch Doctor, and I’m going to play a Demon Hunter. Hopefully we can get going this weekend!
Do you know what I’m going to be doing Monday night?!
Sleeping, of course.
Working. And then probably having dinner, doing various errands and chores, and sleeping. Maybe a small amount of video game playing.
In all seriousness, I’m excited that Diablo III is finally releasing. I wish it was closer to the beta so more of the hype would have carried over, but I guess I’m just complaining that I got into the beta so early. Also, I doubt Blizzard intended to delay D3 so long.
Regardless, gem never beat D1 or D2. We’ve decided that D1 doesn’t hold up well enough any longer, but I think we’re going to play through Diablo 2 before its sequel. Because the D3 collector’s edition includes a copy of D2, we’ll wait until D3 releases to start playing D2. Should be fun!