Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Consolidated PoE FAQ

This is a consolidated list of questions that get asked on stream about Path of Exile. Check out the livestream at twitch.tv/thi3n

Can you pricecheck my item?

!redeem lookitem - use 1000 points to link me an item in game and I'll talk about what makes that item good or usable and how I would pricecheck it.

Should I buy PoE? Is it a good game?

I recommend just installing the game and trying it. It's free. Warning: PoE is a tough introduction to the Action RPG genre. Here's my blog post talking about D3 vs PoE.

How do I start in this game? What do you do in this game?

Just play and experience the game "in the dark". Kill monsters. Do things that are intuitive. Get overwhelmed by the passive tree. Read and try different skill gems. Don't feel bad when you hit a wall: Everyone fails their first character. Defensive layers matter, offense is not easily understood, and enemies have overpowered one-shot mechanics.

I tried it and failed... but I liked it! What are some additional resources?

Engineering Eternity - Great production quality and easy to understand. I highly recommend this content for a new player. This is how I learned.

PoE Wiki - Comprehensive list of everything in PoE. Type in a quest name or item name and learn everything about it.

PoE Subreddit - There is a daily "Ask Questions Thread" stickied to the top of the subreddit.

Path of Building - A super comprehensive calculator for users to import characters and figure out what skill gems and gear pieces would be upgrades. Tool is also used theorycraft.

How are your price checking stuff so fast?

PoE Trade Macro - There are instructions on how to install and use this in order to make price checking a bit faster.

What's giving you that trade overlay?

Mercury Trade - Has a lot of features like automated replies, shortcuts for party inviting/kicking, and chat scanning.

What build are you using? Can I see your profile?

PoE Profile - The character tab is public and you can see my passive tree and current gear.

Do you have any guides?

Glacial Cascade Totems - A guide that's beginner friendly and can experience all content in the game.

Kinetic Blast Deadeye - A build that is dedicated to speed farming and magic finding specific maps.

Molten Strike Ascendant - A tanky lab farmer with tons of defense and regen. Decent mapper and can be used for the endgame with currency investment.

What loot filter are you using?

Filter Blade - I use this website to start with the NeverSink filter base and make modifications (typically I make it more strict because I like seeing less stuff). Instructions on how to use it are in the website. Using the command !filter on twitch can show you my latest changes.

Consolidated Diablo 3 FAQ

This is a consolidated list of questions that get asked on stream about Diablo 3. Check out the livestream at twitch.tv/thi3n

Should I buy Diablo 3? Is it a good game?

This got asked so much I made a blog post about it.

How do I start in this game? What do you do in this game?

Pick any class that looks fun. Everything except for the ultra-late-game is "balanced" and you can play through the story mode using any character you want. After you've done that, check out adventure mode - level up to level 70 doing rifts and/or bounties. Once you hit 70 the "end game" begins. Start by trying to complete your seasons journey which has rewards tied to it. Then check out the leaderboard for builds and try and push some greater rifts.

Can I get a rush, carry, or a power-level?

I created a community in game called **thi3n's Community** where I'll reach out when I'm looking for people to play with or fill viewer carries. Moderators/Viewers hang out there also and sometimes have random groups going.

Quick gif on how to join a community.

What should I reroll on ?

Catch me live and ask me in the community (see above). I'll respond on stream.

In general: Crit Multi > Crit Chance > %Fire/Light/Cold/etc. > %Skill Damage > CDR/AS > INT/DEX/STR > VIT

What build are you using?

I post all the builds I've created to Diablofans, I try and keep them up to date.

If those don't look like it, check out my BNet Profile or ask in stream.

How are you autocasting your abilities?

I'm using something called the Numlock Trick. Here is a short YouTube video about it.

What is the best way to gear up?

Spend your blood shards and crafting materials wisely. Make use of all the different Kanai's Cube recipes. It might be smarter to Upgrade Rare Item, Reforge Legendary, or Convert Set Item depending on what you're looking for.

When actually farming, I like to follow the "5 minute rule" which is: If a rift takes more than 5 minutes I should lower the difficulty and if it is much faster than 5 minutes I should increase the difficulty.

Check out this difficulty guide for the benefits for increasing difficulty.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Diablo 3 vs Path of Exile

This is to answer a question I get on stream all the time. What do you think of D3 vs PoE? Which game is better? I talked a little about this in the past on a related blog post about if I thought D3 was a good game.

Full disclaimer: I like both games. I have hundreds of hours in both. In order to add something to the discussion I will talk about actual things that I think each game does well and what they do poorly.

Things I like about Diablo 3:

1) Smooth gameplay. The game engine is the 3000 pound gorilla. The game just looks and feels great.

2) Visuals are best in class. Abilities are distinct and satisfying, the environment is rich and diverse, and enemies are recognizable and unique.

3) Progression and customization is streamlined and intuitive. Redoing your skills for a new item is easy.

4) Smart loot is fantastic. The goal of these games are to kill monsters and get loot. It's nice when something drops it's generally for your character.

5) Endgame is straightforward. The difficulty slider tells you how much harder and how much better the loot rate is going to be. In the absolute late game things infinitely scale with monster health/damage, and raw stat points of the player.

6) The community is great. Plenty of guides and content creators. While assholes exist anywhere... I feel like the ARPG community as a whole is generally more chill then say the MOBA or FPS community.

Things I dislike about Diablo 3:

1) The endgame is relatively stagnant. I am an experienced player so I reach endgame very fast. I enjoy the process of gearing up and trying new combinations of abilities but once I get an optimal set and get to the point where I'm trying to get primal ancients and grind away for 5 more stat points then I burn out.

2) New content is not that frequent. I play a lot, so I exhaust the new items and abilities right away. The season resets once every 3 months or so and I get to a point of saturation about 2-3 weeks into the season. Those 2-3 weeks are extremely fun but I just burn out.

Things I like about Path of Exile:

1) Player driven economy. This to me is the hugest thing that Diablo 3 is missing. The ability to trade is a tedious chore for some but I love having the option to do this in a game that revolves around loot.

2) Constant updates. The game is very different then it was a year ago and it will be very different a year from now.

3) It's hard. When I want a challenge I get it. Sometimes when I don't want a challenge I get it anyways. I basically die every day while playing and streaming the game because if I'm not paying attention or don't understand a mechanic I will get destroyed. I used to hate this about the game but it has grown on me.

4) It's grindy. If I have an idea for a character or find an item that pulls me in a direction I have to make a whole new character which can take 20+ hours of in game time to see that vision through.

5) The company is great. They are clear about what they are working on and it's a company that "gets it" in terms of making macro decisions that the community will enjoy.

6) The community is great. Like Diablo 3, there are plenty of guides and content creators. People are similarly chill and because of the difficulty of this game I find the community is generally smarter and more mature than your average gamer.

Things I dislike about Path of Exile:

1) Having to leave the game or download third party programs. Third party tools are basically required to learn things about the game, check stat ranges, and trade.

2) Sometimes feels clunky. I have a great computer and internet connection but I experience desynch and rubber-banding sometimes. Movement abilities and environment interactions don't always do what you think they're gonna do.

D3 is fun for everyone. It's easy to understand, enjoyable to play, and an overall beautiful experience. PoE is for hardcore gamers. It's a challenge and has tons of depth and content that is changing and growing. It's possible to like both games as they scratch different itches.