Posts Tagged ‘hardcore’

Huzzah, got to 70 this morning on my hardcore seasonal monk! I’m only on Expert difficulty at the moment, but some of the gear things I’ve had drop were pretty decent. The first legendary I got was from Kadala, and they’re those pants that fart out an AoE to kill things around you. It works perfectly with the overall build I have as a holdover for actual stuff. Now that I’m max level, however, the battle has barely begun. Gotta get moar gear, finish up the chapter by killing the key wardens and other bosses on Torment, and random other shenanigans. I’m looking forward to it.

And since I finally have the time, I’m gonna ramble on a bit about my experience with Diablo in the past. I started out with the first game, and still don’t remember when or how I got it. Much the same as other Blizzard games I had, I think they more or less just appeared in my possession, or were lent to me by a friend (back when you could still loan out a video game). The Hellfire expansion was cool, but all I really remember was blowing countless scrolls and trying to set an entire map on fire with a cleric, to make the skeletons run through layers and layers of flame just to get to me.

Diablo 2 is where I sunk a lot of hours. My friends and I dusted it off from time to time, and almost always used the increase player level command to give more difficulty and chance at loot. I never really bothered with the Amazon or Paladin, might’ve done Assassin and Sorcerer once or twice… but good gods, did I love rolling a barbarian and beatstick, or a bone army Necromancer, or a shifter druid. I loved tweaking different barbarian builds to just smash things forever and get more potions and gold and practically perma-running. Or doing some absurd druid combo form thing, or roll out with every damned possible pet as a Necro.

One of the things I miss the most from Diablo 2 to 3 is the skill tree synergy, where X ranks of that skill would increase the effectiveness of Y. It helped change things up, by getting you to pick different abilities that you might have otherwise overlooked, because you wanted those next couple percentages or some more bodies. Sure, the new modular system works rather well, especially for changing on the go, but it isn’t quite the same feel of sinking points into something and seeing the results. Eh, I guess paragon levels are kinda close to it.

When Diablo 3 came out, I was really on the fence about getting it (and also pretty broke at the time). I didn’t play the beta, and didn’t really think the game would be that good, especially after seeing the changes between 2 and 3. One of my friends had both the pre-order for the game, as well as the WoW Annual Pass, which gave D3 for free, so he tossed me a copy for opening day. I was one of the many laughing at Error 37 and 1006 or whatever the other numbers were. But once we were in, we had a blast. I might’ve stayed up and blitzed to max level… I don’t quite remember.

The AH felt like a gimmick, and I used the ever-loving crap outta the damned thing. Once I found out how to truly search and dig for whatever things I wanted, I started to tweak out my character’s gear and get it nice and fine-tuned, while selling back the occasional item to cover the costs of whatever I spent. It ended up being to the point that I stopped playing the game to get gear for myself, and instead just tried to farm more gold so I could buy the upgrades. When they took it out, I was ecstatic. Good riddance, and that’s coming from someone who used the damned thing constantly.

Reaper of Souls came out, and more importantly, seasons. I decided that, if it’s some new ladder system with reset progress, then I might as well do something different. So my first character was a Hardcore Crusader. I don’t even know how many I lost due to herpderping into all the things (before Crusaders had the 30% melee survivability buff thing, if I recall correctly), but I loved it. Had a softcore one too, but bleh, doesn’t matter anymore. The second season, I was too busy with WoW, and ended up trying to blitz a hardcore Demon Hunter up during the final weekend. Lost her at… 65, after 15 hours of play. A couple levels away from max, and during the last leg of the whole thing. Pissed at myself, I ended up getting another one blitzed up using leftover gear and a bit of help.

Third season was where I really got into it… My Witch Doctor, ZergSwarm. Started it out knowing I wanted a massive pet build. And good gods, did I make one. Not liking the whole Carnevil thing going around, I instead started off with zombie dogs, the gargantuans (three, due to the ring), and the fetishes. At one point, including my character and follower, I was rolling out with 37 different friendlies on my screen. Regularly. Then I started getting more gear, and felt my damage slacking off, and REALLY started to farm. Ended up with a 6p Zunimassa’s build using fetishes and mana spender to basically just apply a damage taken debuff. Tore through everything. t6 was a *joke*. Eventually I got bored of hunting for a solid Starmetal Kukri, and went back into WoW again.

Now here we are, with me being a bit tired of casual play in WoW, and a new season in Diablo. Lost two monks before level 10, and now TooFuriosa is max level and ready to go. Playing hardcore, and trying to push for higher tiers of content, is all the thrill of Mythic raiding, without any of the hassle of trying to figure out schedules or worry about other people standing in shit and wiping us. No, it’s just me, my reflexes, and my own luck. Everyone plays games in their own ways, and my way for Diablo is solo, while testing my own limits. Can’t wait to see how far I get this time.

And speaking of going far… Today marks the 31st post in a row I’ve made. Blaugust challenge complete, coming from someone who never blogged before. Now that I’m done, I probably won’t do the daily thing anymore, but if I’ve got something worth posting or rambling about, I’ll keep ya guys in the loop.

-Bane Falcon

Good work praises itself.”

http://aggronaut.com/2015/07/21/the-revenge-of-blaugust/

…and apparently, neither do I. Now that the new Diablo season is out, I’m more than willing (and hopefully able) to continue staying up ’til 3 AM, slaying the minions of hell. After getting home at a little before 10pm, I got myself nice and comfortable and completely lost myself in the game, yet again. And no, I’m totally not eating at the moment, because I forgot about food over the past few hours. Of course not…

Last night, I left off with my character right after she hit 42. Woke up, did another handful of bounties, got to 45 and finished up some other random stuff. Tonight was just waves and waves of bounties, plus the occasional rift once I cleared all 5 zones. At the moment, however, I have two MVPs to thank for my character’s progress, and for keeping my gameplay from steamrolling me and making me lose a level 62 monk.

First and foremost is Nagelring. Oh good gods, that Nagelring. Got my first one at 15 or so. To be honest? The stats don’t matter whatsoever. It’s the passive ability on it, that causes a little suicide bomber to spawn every 10-12 seconds and explode for 4000%-5000% WEAPON DAMAGE. These little bastards hit HARD. And I don’t care if it weakens the overall “feel” or “experience” or “challenge”… I love waiting for the max of 4 of them to spawn, then go into a boss fight and make it implode before the mechanics even start. When I was starting to get really concerned about the super low stats on the one I was using when I was close to 60… lo and behold, another one dropped. So that first one is likely gonna go into my cube, since my follower doesn’t get anything from it aside from spawning the little runts faster.

MVP runner-up? Kadala. That’s right, the disciple of RNGesus herself, and Gheed’s frustrated daughter or whatever the hell she is. This chick has never legitimately helped me with anything before. Sure, she sometimes gave me something that I could potentially maybe kinda-sorta use, but nothing jaw-dropping. Well, as I was grinding out more bounties (and right after hitting 61), I killed a blood goblin and went over my blood shard cap. Dreading the worst, I went back into town and decided to waste some on her. Who knows, maybe I’d get some weapon that wasn’t garbage, and of a higher tier (Since 60 was the max level without the expansion, there’s a significant power jump at 61). So I give it a shot… and get a Monk Daibo with 178% damage increase over what I was using. Oh, and it already had a socket on it. Dumbfounded, I try to use another gamble, this time on shoulders in hopes of replacing the lower level ones I still had… poof, another legendary, with the buff of town portal becoming an absorb shield. Two tries, two legendaries. Pretty damned strong.

Well, since hitting 60 gained access to Chapter 3, I had to see what all things I didn’t complete yet. Level the Blacksmith and Jeweler to 12, need more gold. Level to 70, okay. And then… beat any end-chapter boss on Master or above. Huh. This whole time I was playing on Hard (difficulty 2 out of the 4 non-Torment ones) and Master was two tiers higher. Well, what the hell. I just got some new shinies. So I replaced my gems, buffed my survivability, slapped some weapon damage into that new daibo, and went to town on the Butcher.

Rolling in with 4 of the little suicide bombers and a new weapon, plus whatever other stat boosts? He melted. Even for me doubling my difficulty level. Felt damned good, man.

Now to get some sleep, get through an early day of work, get home, and hit 70. Catch ya guys once I see what Chapter 4 has in store for me, and I’ll update you all tomorrow. Might even get around to rambling about my old Diablo stories.

-Bane Falcon

Gold may shine, but steel smashes, rips and chops.” (Reminding dwarves what is important.)

http://aggronaut.com/2015/07/21/the-revenge-of-blaugust/

Yesterday (or today, as I like to put it, since I haven’t slept yet) I had a rather long and boring day at work. Nothing much to say on that front, it was the normal crap with a bit of back pain and a headache thrown in for good measure. I finished up the shift, got home, checked WoW missions briefly, then finally managed to dive into what I’ve been waiting on for quite a while… Season 4 in Diablo 3.

Seasons are Diablo 3’s ladder system. Each one has a limited time, usually a little over 3-4 months, sometimes more, sometimes less. There’s random dungeons called Rifts that just throw a bunch of mobs onto a randomly created map, and Greater Rifts which do the same thing, but get progressively harder and don’t drop any loot until the end. The ranking part of the season is based around how high of a greater rift you can complete in the time window before the rift closes.

The best part about seasons, in my opinion, is that you get a fresh start. At the end of each season, your seasonal characters become the non-seasonal versions of what they were, and all the loot and stash items go along with them. So, my paragon 239 Hardcore Seasonal Witch Doctor joined my other normal Hardcore characters, and is sharing their bank and gold. Regardless of that, when a new Seasonal character is started for the first time, it gets its own sub-server thing. For example, when I rolled a Hardcore Season Monk earlier tonight and got it killed at level 6, the next hardcore season character I rolled had access to the bank and the gold from the first monk… all 1100 or so gold. But not the 100 million+ gold from my main hardcore account.

Huzzah for whatever attempts to explain all of that stuff. I’ve been craving a new Seasonal experience for a good month or two, now. Hardcore with no safety net and no stockpile of crafting materials to get my characters tweaked out before they leave base for the first time? Oh good gods, do I love it. Sure, I got my monk killed twice before level 10, and had to start over. But now TooFuriosa (was just Furiosa twice, but then I remembered my personal rule about changing the name when they die) is riding nice and cozy at 42, with several legendaries and more than able to farm whatever comes her way.

I’ve already got my build guide lined out, and practicing with the playstyle as I level into the other abilities. It’s the first time I’ve actually played a monk, and not just had it powerleveled and checked out some gimp guide to go along with the random pieces of gear I had in storage. Nope, now I get to deal with all the close calls, and get the muscle memory of twitching a certain way to just barely avoid something that’ll flatten me.

Another interesting part of the new season is the “Chapters” system. It gives you a bit of a guide to follow along, making sure that you deal with different things at the appropriate time. For example, doing a Rift and hitting level 35 are parts of the first Chapter, whereas making sure your follower is fully equipped, leveling the different crafters to 10, and hitting 60 are part of the second Chapter. The fourth Chapter reward is where you get the rest of the seasonal cosmetic items, so it’s got incentive to have players follow through and not just get farmed or carried.

All of that said… any time I can sit down at my computer at 9:30pm, blink, and realize it’s past 2am because of how fully immersed I am in the game? Yeah, that’s a good thing. A bit dangerous, but always enjoyable. And now for sleep before I continue to blitz through and try to start farming for the pieces I need.

-Bane Falcon
Rest your shields, lean on stones, listen and always remember, long are the arms and legs of men, yet still longer, the Dwarven members!” (a battlefield limerick meant to relieve stressed-out dwarves, usually exclaimed by leaders and commanders whenever the outlook is otherwise grim)

http://aggronaut.com/2015/07/21/the-revenge-of-blaugust/