Author’s note: Tumblr is being silly by disallowing bold in my posts. For now, I will have to italicize headers.
And here we are, on the precipice of Hell itself. It’s been a long journey, and we are all set to take the plunge.
I’m going to take a few minutes to talk about playing the game, with a specific lens on getting ready to farm as the end goal. I will not get into laser-fine segments of the game and how you should play it my way. That would be counterproductive and an insult to the depth of variety Blizzard has made.
First up is classes’ effect on your style of gameplay. From every source I have read, every class will be extremely viable into end-inferno. This was a pipe dream that wasn’t in D2. Now, it depends on your playstyle. That does not, however, mean that you should take the selection of your first class lightly. For example, the two melee classes, Monk and Barbarian, take reduced melee damage from monsters. Besides having skills and orientations geared toward tanking, they are just naturally good at it. You will be planning on taking a lot of hits and not caring as much. Meanwhile, the wizard has a more mental play that I personally enjoy. We’ve all seen videos of wanton destruction handed out by the two caster classes, but make no mistake. More than the melee classes, their success depends more heavily on the timing and placement of their skills. Having the slow or stun needed at just the right time will be crucial. Once you have gotten into Hell and Inferno with the casters, sleep deprivation will likely hand you some deaths. When I get too sleepy, I plan to switch to a melee character so it is less forgiving.
Let’s talk about skills. I’m not here to show off my builds or explain their reasoning. I will, however, say this: experiment while levelling. It will be far more forgiving to do it at the earlier levels and modes. Furthermore, at level 60, a magic things happens: Nephalem Valour. This will be a stacking magic find buff that you will stack as you kill random-spawned bosses and elites at only max level. It will be reset when you leave a game or when you retool your skills. This means that when farming, having a ‘single target’ skill set, a ‘tank’ skill set, and an ‘AoE’ skill set will not work in your favour. You take a big hit to MF every time you swap. You will have to create a versatile, interesting build that is its own Swiss Army knife. Experimenting while farming will penalize you. Also, as your targets are randomly located, skills that speed up your travel will help you.
Additionally, I suggest not being silly with gold in the early days of the game. In D2, gold meant little and we all gambled it away. Now, it has many uses – don’t blow your fortune on the gold auction house for a minimal upgrade. Use it instead to level your artisans and start producing high-level gear through crafting. You’ll get a better return on your money until the auction houses stabilize from their primordial soup.
Questions, Updates and News
I’ve been asked to clarify something about the RMAH. You will be required to own a device capable of SMS messaging to cash out to PayPal. It will acts as a secondary authenticator that will give you sequences to repeat. My belief is that this is an anti-theft mechanism in case your phone gets stolen. While I use a stand-alone authenticator, it shouldn’t inconvenience me too much. I have friends who are frothing at this, however, suggesting that they don’t like giving their phone’s information away.
On spoilers: there will be no plot spoilers for one month after release from me. On June 15th, this embargo is lifted. Before then, I will not mention plot points, boss names that we don’t expect (say, aside from one of the seven Evils) or too many details about the acts. I may reveal followers, item details, or the like – things essential to talking about farming and the auction houses. But spoilers are going to be avoided when they can.
With the revelations about Battle Tag displays, I’m curious about how it will affect streamers and others with public identities. The last thing I want is to be messaged constantly in game if I start doing videos or streams.
I now have an e-mail address and (currently unused) Youtube channel. They are DiabloFarmer and DiabloFarmer@gmail.com. I am not sure yet when I will use the channel, but there it is.