Greedy Goblin

Monday, January 23, 2012

To be or not to be ... a barbarian?

The recent Diablo III beta patch made significant system changes. They are widely discussed. However one change (probably without intention) will make or break our gearing and $-making in Diablo III:
* Increases Barbarian damage
* Increases Armor
* Increases Demon Hunter damage
* Increases Monk damage
* Increases Dodge
* Increases Wizard and Witch Doctor damage
* Increases Health gained from Health Globes
* Increases Max Health

There are 5 classes. Wizard and Witch Doctor will share gear, so will Demon Hunter and Monk. But Barbarians don't share (go figure!). This will create a serious gear imbalance one way or another: if Strength gear has equal chance to drop as Intellect and Dexterity, then Barbarian gear will be over-represented two-fold. This will make gearing a Barbarian easy and Barbarian gear prices low.

If the Barbarian gear has half chance to drop compared to Intellect and Dexterity gear, then a Barbarian has only 20% chance to find the next drop useful, while everyone else has 40%. Also a piece of Barbarian gear has 20% chance to be dropped for someone who can use it, while every other piece has 40%. This means that there will be more Barbarian gear on the AH (both gold and RM AH) and a Barbarian will both buy and sell more gear than any other class.

So either Barbarian will be easy to gear, or will need more AH-ing than other classes. Both ways mean that an AH-player should pick a Barbarian (unless hates melee).

Now let's consider droprate adjustments, as we can assume that Blizzard will try to balance classes. One way of adjustments is fix the drop chances to player activity percentages. So if 30% of the active players are witch doctors, 25% are wizards, 20-20% are demon hunters and monks and only 15% barbarians, then 55% of the gloves will have int, 40% dexterity and 15 str (vitality ignored). This case you should pick a class that belongs to the lowest percentage, which will most probably a Barbarian, unless it's so popular that there are more of them than the two int or the two dex classes combined.

Other adjustment possibility is that the loot is tailored to the player, which case all classes will be equal AH-wise. But that's unlikely as Blizzard wants you to use RMAH to pay them cut.


Anonymous said...

I think that here you forget that Barbarian is one of the most played classes in Diablo. Me and my friends here have a problem that all 6 of us want to play Barbarians and it is not because of the faster gearing or more money from the AH and such.

Anonymous said...

You can tell that by a sample of six people?
I can say that my mates (5 people) do NOT want to play Barbarian. The argument isn't as solid as yours isn't.
Mathematically the chance of not playing a barb is much higher than actually playing one.

Anonymous said...

I believe blizz will have a dynamic drop-chance method to "nudge" ppl into using the any AH.

We have someone that has absolute control over the market just by rounding the %-numbers they can increase or decrease AH dependancy.

I don't think I'll play a elaborate GUI to a online casino where ppl pay to bet, pay to collect bets and pay to play.

Bobbins said...

The reason for free markets is that they are able to efficiently (mostly) organise and distribute the resources within an economy.

The market will react and adjust to the different factors within the diablo market. To say that this factor threatens the existance of the market is wrong. The main risk to the ah is nobody using it. The excess supply of gear will drive down the price of gear but unless it devalues it beyond the point to make it worthless (question:what is worthless?) people will trade it.

Anonymous said...

Are you assuming that all Dex gear is equally useful for a Demon Hunter as it is for a Monk? Couldn't there be a clear difference between a DH piece and a Monk piece which they could use to even this out?

Anonymous said...

Is the gear in D3 dramatically different from D2? In D2 gear the "stats" on the gear was pretty unimportant, most items don't give any of the main stats, and they were never the main reason you would want an item. And you could often use the same piece of gear across a great variety of characters (Enigma armor for example).

Squishalot said...

Aside from the fact that your numbers don't add up to 100% (30% + 25% + 20% + 20% + 15% = 110%), I don't see why you should pick the lowest percentage class "unless it's so popular that there are more of them than the two int or the two dex classes combined.".

What you should be doing is choosing a class that is underrepresented relative to the fixed drop rates. So if the drop rate is 15%, and only 10% of players are barbarians, then you should roll one for cheaper goods / higher drops in party.

Otherwise, if your goal is primarily single player play and selling excess on the AH, you should just choose an intellect-based class for faster gearing, and then subsequent faster levelling / grinding, rather than suffering under poor drop rates as a barbarian.

Anonymous said...

If D3 is anything like D2, there will be pieces tailored to a particular class.

I think there's a lot of schools of thought on which class will output the best money, but I think it's more important that you play a class that you can enjoy re-running bosses for hours. If wizard can teleport eg. sorc from d2, he'll really be the best choice for gear runs.