Diablo 3, Reaper of Souls

Diablo 3 expansion upcoming, titled "Reaper of Souls". This expansion has been awaited and predicted (just not the name yet) since before Diablo 3 eas released.

No doubt you've seen the cinematic by now,. but if not I'll help you out. Of the many things Blizzard does, their cinematics are among the few things nobody can really complain about.

But in short there's a "2.0" version of Diablo 3 coming up.
The game seems more like WoW than Diablo 2 in a number of aspects, and many Diablo fans will tell you that's a bad thing. I'm one of those. Boss timers, level 60 cap? Well,. I'll leave that can of worms for now. It's an obvious method of uninventive developers to try and milk the players in a similar manner that's "succeeded" with World of Warcraft.

Personally, Diablo 3's expected fun was so lacking that it's just put me off from really worrying about buying an expansion or not for the time being. Of course that's not just purely the fault of Blizzard-activision. It's that there's just so many things that can be wrong with a game before you stop trying to make the excuse "but it's diablo, it has to be good" and quit playing the game.

There ARE greener pastures out there! But more on that in a minute.

Diablo 3 LoD... Or rather RoS will feature a beta sometime this year (2013)
* New class "Crusader", strength based so start hoarding barbarian gear.
* Level cap increased to 70.
* One extra act added.
* Paragon levels will become account wide, rather than per-character. And have no limit (meaning level 99999 and above if you wish to spend that much time) So, character advancement points much like everquest. If you thought bots were bad now, just wait until people start farming for this!
* Paragon levels will allow you to allocate stat points. Respeccing is under review, no promises as usual. (Yeah that means +50 int, etc)
* "New" (The mystic) artisan added which will allow you to change the appearance of your gear (much like WoW hierlooms)
* New Gem "diamond" - probably gives resist all.
* Bigger and better loot, more DPS, more fireworks, you name it.
* Random dungeons with random floors for "loot runs", to improve replayability.
* Most game changes will be free for all players, new act and class will require the expansion to be installed.

So, out of those things, which interest you the most?
Personally, I'd say the paragon levels. Strangely, since the highest paragon level I've got is 3 or 4. I stopped bothering around then. No friends to play with and no desire to make new ones due to a horrible lacking chat channel. You know, the bot ridden pissing pond filled with bots that they thought would be a GREAT replacement for the old Diablo 2 chat channels. (Though nowadays those are 90% bots as well, blizzard does a really bad job at cleaning those cheaters up.. Ban "waves" just do not work people,. get it through your thick gold plated skulls)

But anyway,. one of the major issues with Diablo 3 is the Auction house. They've said so themselves even. Why is it a problem though? Well, if you have a game which focuses heavily on loot and items, and then makes all those items including the "very best" ones available for simple gold or dollars, then people will focus on that place where those items are available for gold or dollars rather than going out and "playing the game", because the chances of finding the items they want while "playing the game" are so slim as to have better chances winning the powerball lottery. You might as well not play, or send a bot to farm gold for you and then simply buy the item you want.

Luckily blizzard has realised this issue themselves by now, and we can only hope they'll be smart about fixing it. (Don't get your hopes up though, ever since the Activision merger any hopes of something smart coming out of Blizzard are about as small as EA ever publically admitting they're greedy idiots)

What do we have to really look forward to nowadays?
Well, there's a team of developers who actually bothered to look at what gamers enjoyed when playing Diablo 2, then looked at everything they didn't like in Diablo 3. And then, rather than copy everything Blizzard did wrong and shoot some poor excuses at the fans about having made bad choices and other blah blah blah, without actually fixing anything... They went ahead and made a GREAT game (which is still in beta, mind you) that is completely FREE to play!

I'm talking about Path of Exile. And if you haven't heard of it before now, then you should stop whatever you're doing right now (but please finish reading this post first) and go install this game right now! Download link is Right Here. Or you can keep reading while it's downloading.. It'll take a while.

Some highlights:
* Atmosphere. Nice gloomy, dark, drab and some might say boring looking. No rainbow fairy blinking eyesores here like in WoW and D3. Dungeons are dark, and sometimes it's hard to see. That adds to the suspense and it's lovely just like that.
* No gold. You don't need to farm gold to repair your gear for 500.000g or bid 240m on that one sword you want, this game has no gold. Armor is always durable and will not abandon you in the middle of an intense fight. This might seem very strange to some RPG players, after all, gold is the one-all thing that is shared with nearly every single game ever made. Money pays for things, and things make the world go around.
Instead of gold, you get scrolls, and baubles and misc items which can be used to enhance and upgrade your gear, re-roll sockets, imbue magical effects or simply identify new finds. I assure you, it works. But, I'd recommend saving up everything you find until you can get a better understanding of the trade values.
* Socketed gems can be removed whenever you want and re-used. Your gems grow as you level, can be handed to alt characters, used and reused, swapped out and so on. Gems give you skills, and using this you can make a unique build for your character that is nearly guaranteed to be unique. Unlike diablo 3's cookie cutter builds. (even though blizzard said there wouldn't be any cookie cutter builds) There are even gems which enhance other gems!
* Skill tree bigger than life itself. It is HUGE. 1350 skills, lots of passives. If the gems alone didn't make your character unique enough, this thing will.
* Frequent updates, perhaps because it's still beta but, 1 patch a week sure beats 1 patch every 6 months like we get with Diablo, if at all.
* BIG community, very active forum

Just give it a Try, if you don't like it, you won't be screwed out of 60 bucks, but just a bit of time and HardDisk space. And you can always uninstall the game afterwards.


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