We’re sitting at almost exactly 1 week since Diablo 3 was released in the US and around the world. We’ve seen a lot of things we didn’t expect and others that we completely saw coming. My prediction that the RMAH would get pushed back again came true (it’ll go live on May 29th) – but right now, what are the biggest mistakes players are making in Diablo 3? Here is what I’ve come up with, make sure you’re not guilty of these:
#1 Not Bringing a Follower Along
Did you know if you’re playing solo you can bring a follower along with you? If you didn’t, you’re making the game more difficult than it needs to be. Maybe you’re a purist and insist on running through Hell mode alone. I bet you’re dying a lot. There are three follower types, the Templar, Scoundrel and Enchantress. There is a lot of debate which is best, but honestly it’s different for each class and each class play style. The templar heals, the Scoundrel slows and the Enchantress casts spells. Play with each of one, pick a favorite and use them diligently, you won’t regret it. If you didn’t know, you can even gear them up.
#2 Not Buying Gear off the Auction House
Sure, you’re too cool to buy gear from someone off the Auction House. You’re so good that you don’t need help. Well, you’re going to die. Thirty to Fifty thousand gold is all it costs to deck your character out in moderate gear (use buyout caps when searching for gear). Hopefully you didn’t already waste all your gold on repairs and artisans. Don’t try to buy the best stuff there, you don’t need +100 Dexterity and +100 Vitality in Nightmare as a Demon Hunter. You just need something with both Dexterity and Vitality in that slot that you’re currently sporting +52 Strength and +42 Dexterity. If you can add a primary stat to each piece of gear slot, or round them all up a bit you can add hundreds of Vitality which equates to thousands of health points. All this equates to living instead of dying.
Visit the auction house, sort by buyout (highest on top) and then go to page 10 or 30, there’s the clearance area you’re looking for. These sellers are stepping over each other left and right to sell you some nice gear. Let them help you out.
#3 Wasting Gold on Your Artisans
Most players are telling me that they have a level 4, 5 or 6 Blacksmith and/or Jeweler. I respond with, ‘oh yeah, what’s that get you?’ In the case of the Blacksmith you can make some pretty nice gear, but the Jeweler… you won’t be able to make gold with them until you can combine gems like squares and stars. Unless you’re really patient you’re not going to get a lot of upgrades from your Blacksmith. Just buy the gear off the auction house, it’ll be cheaper and save you 100,000 gold or more.
You can make gold with both Artisans, but if you are not then you wasted money on them early in the game when money was especially valuable.
#4 Ignoring Skill and Game Mechanics
Diablo 3 is serious business. Consider the passive skill Archery for the Demon Hunter. It buffs your damage based on the type of weapon you’re using. If you’re comparing two weapons of different types the tooltip might tell you that one is better than the other but that just might not be true. Tooltips can’t predict everything so you have to understand what it is that is going on before making key decisions like what type of gear to equip. There are also skills like Steady Aim that increase your damage when an enemy is within a certain range of you. Do you know what 10 yards looks like in the game??!! If you don’t, what the hell do you expect?
#5 Ignoring Vitality
Damage is cool! Let’s see how high we can get the Damage stat to go in our stat screen. Oh, 500… 800… 1300… 2200, yes! But.. why am I still dying? Stop ignoring Vitality. Even if you’re a Demon Hunter… especially if you’re a Demon Hunter, you’re going to die a lot if you don’t have a lot of Vitality. Don’t be embarrassed to cut your DPS down 25% to double your Vitality. Watch your health globe in the bottom left when you equip some nice Vitality gear. See that new health? How nice would it be to have that when some cheating ass elite pack jails you, walls you and then hits you with something that you didn’t even see? What good is all that damage anyways if you’re spending 1/4 of your night running back?
#6 Sticking with your Original Skills
I’ll use the Demon Hunter again for this example. Rapid Fire looks pretty damn cool, and if you got in the habit of using it on Normal difficulty it probably worked just fine. But once you reached Nightmare or Hell and started dying did you blame your class (this class just sucks) or your skills? Chances are it’s your fault, but you should look to your skills before blaming your class. Rapid Fire is primarily for cooperative play where your allies take the damage and afford you the opportunity to hold still. A skill like Chakram will let you dance around while doing high amounts of AoE damage. This is just one example, I’m sure there are more for each class. Play with each and every skill at least once before you pretend like you know what you’re doing.
#7 Running Back in Cooperative Games
This is a pet peeve I’ve noticed recently in cooperative games. If you die, release your body and immediately teleport to town, then click on an allies’ banner and you’ll be instantly teleported back into the action. Don’t run back… Of course if you aren’t making the mistakes listed above you probably aren’t dying in cooperative games unless it’s a complete wipe. Either way, this is a helpful trick to get back into combat really fast and I’m seeing too many players run back the hard way when in a cooperative game.
#8 Using Only One or a Few Skill Builds
At level 60 you’ll receive a bonus the longer you can play using a single skill build. This should give you a hint that frequent skill swapping makes the game easier. While you’re leveling, there’s no harm in swapping from build to build based on whether you’re solo’ing, playing coop, fighting a boss or running easy content. Slowing mobs might be helpful now, but later when your friend joins its not so helpful. Switch to another ability!
#9 Not Using About Elective Mode
Some players don’t realize that there is an ‘elective mode’ when it comes to skill builds. Just because there are only four options for your primary skill doesn’t mean you have to choose from one of those four options. Go to Options -> Gameplay -> Interface and check ‘elective mode.’ This will allow you to assigned whatever abilities you want in whatever location you want. You’ll see most of the skill builds on Diablo 3 Artisans don’t use elective mode. That’s because the default setup is actually pretty nice. However, there are some common situations where you might want to swap out Sentry for a Bat Companion (just an example) instead of being forced to sacrifice your Bat Companion for Vault.
There are probably more mistakes that players are making, these are just the 7 that stand out to me. If I’m missing one, please share it below in the comments area.
There are also some small tips that might take new players awhile to figure out:
- Hold CTRL to preview gear before looting it
- Hold ALT to compare a ring to your second ring
- Vendor your Magic Items, don’t salvage them.
- Check every vendor for upgrades.
- Tap ALT to auto-show loot that isn’t otherwise being shown.
If you’re still having problems with your class ask other players that you meet how they are overcoming the challenge that you’re stuck on. Chances are they will be willing to share their stats, gear, skills and play-style with you.
Important: Many of the strategies and tips I share here were originally inspired by the people at the Diablo 3 Gold Secrets Forum. If you're serious about making the big bucks in Diablo 3, or just being the best players, you need to signup ASAP.