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I'm worried how builds are getting slashed, rather than being balanced

The 3 big loosers this patch are WB EQ, Poison Lich and Shadow Dagger BD. 3 builds, 3 headshots, 3 corpses. I’m honestly worried how the game is being balanced at that point. Rather than fixing the damage done/mobility/survivability or whatever is deemed broken about a build, the devs did a broad stroke, essentially killing it. Why is that? Does the build breaks fundamental development philosophy or what?
(For reference WB EQ doesn’t work anymore, due to mana restrains, Wandering Spirits got effective 98% damage nerf and Shadow Dagger got 80% less dps through Shadow Cascade and 30% less dps through Smoke Bomb. These changes are build killing nerfs and even though Poison Lich and Shadow Dagger can still “function”, they are simply no longer viable as inferior 0.8.2 class builds trample on them after the patch. While WB EQ just doesn’t work).


The first one was massively overperforming compared to where the devs wanted it to, Wandering Spirits was being used as an auto-cast which the devs don’t “like” & Shadow Daggers was nerfed by 50% at the high end in 0.8.2, how was it nerfed this patch?


Shadows have 20% chance to proc Shadow Dagger with Cascade, down from 100% and Smoke bomb has 70% chance to proc it per tick, down from 100%.

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I’d say there are more than three dead builds in this patch! However, I think the expectation of balance is unrealistic. Any game that introduces so many elements combining together will never be even close to balanced. Hence, the choices become:

  1. to make the game simpler and able to be balanced. Eg. get rid of life leech so that high damage builds are not immortal unless oneshot, allowing life regen, chill attackers on hit, etc. to be relevant.

  2. to keep the game complex and have the hubris that you can keep it balanced, then be afraid to make large and necessary changes because you may kill a build. Down that path lies POE.

  3. to try things, even broken things, and have change as part of the culture. Hell, it’d cost you nothing. Just watch Boardman videos and when he says ‘this is broken, so use it now before it gets fixed’ you get to work fixing that thing quickly.

I’d be a fan of choice 1 or 3 but not 2.

Yeah usually EHG is better than this, not sure why they thought PoE 3.15 was a good role model. EQ werebear needed nerfed, not killed. Wandering spirits wasn’t even close to a top build, don’t know what they killed it for. Shadow daggers went from cool ability back to cool idea but not worth using.

This is such a common occurence with game developers now, maybe it’s contagious. I know it’s early access but if they want all the builds to feel like wandering spirits does now, I can play something else.


Thanks, I’d missed that. I had a look at the node & it’s 20% chance for shadows using Shadow Cascade but still 100% chance from player Shadow Cascades, so it’s still quite a nerf.

I dont think that’s true, because PoE constantly kills builds, sometimes even mid league. I would say doing broad brush changes like this goes down the path of PoE, not the opposite.

That’s essentially 80% dps nerf, regardless of people telling you “it still does the same damage” and the smoke bomb nerf is very significat as well. Smoke bomb used to guarantee 1 proc of Shadow Dagger, now very often it doesn’t, so you can’t reliably use it to clear a large cluster of mobs.

Yeah, that’s what feedback is for. If the devs make a change which they think is reasonable/warranted but the player-base really doesn’t, they will make further changes. They often then give us commentary as to why they made the change, what they were aiming for & how they think they hit or missed that target.

Afaik the EQ Werebear wasn’t just “nerfed”, but “fixed”. There was a bug that messed up the cooldown working properly.

I think it’s important to fix bugs that cause builds to perform op. Else you cannot tweak and balance stuff, if you can’t plan or control the power of skills and interactions.

Also it’s not always possible to go the one route to not nerf specific op builds but only buff all other builds to perform on the same level. This would result in an upward spiral that gets out of hand quickly.

Keep in mind that this still is a beta. No changes are made to frustrate anybody. It’s all for the overall balance.

All those nerfs were expected to happen.


I would guess Wandering Spirits is in a temporary state. It had to change if EHG wanted to stop autocasting, but now they have to find the right formula. That’s what a beta is for, so till now no problem, it’s perfectly appropriate.

EQ Bear should not have been a build, in my opinion. Unless EHG wanted to get some kind of information from our feedback, I don’t know.

But don’t forget the game is in beta. We’ve had and will still have adjustments. Some builds will appear, some will disappear, the majority will be adjusted.

Dare I predict that another build will be nerfed soon? Have a look towards the Paladin. :wink:

By ripping a spec, you force people to try something else completely. Find overlooked combinations etc. You can rebalance said builds later as there are multiple patches left before release.

EQ werebear got nerfed so it’s not stupidly powerful and lets you play the game in an entirely unintended way. It’s not dead, it’s just not ridiculous lol. Also the primalist changes are next patch, this is just a temporary change so it’s not god tier (which they explicitly said in the patch notes), and will obviously be getting changed in the next patch to work how they want it to.


Necromancer: “First time?”

these devs only nerf, they never buff. they want dark souls: the arpg.

Come on Zarono, I know you’re massively down on the changes to the Necro, but that’s just objectively false.


we know that objectively the devs never talk to us, and i can’t recall a single instance outside of the abomination change (which i have openly expressed is an un-balancable skill) where a number went up. or at least, (and this regards the necromancer) a scenario where a number went up MORE than it went down.

Or quit the game.

I am looking at this from a different perspective here…

The game is in beta and while its come a LONG way, I guess its got a fair way to go before being ready for 1.0 launch…

So… to me massive changes are 1) expected and 2) a way to see what works and what doesnt work…

Take the whole resistance change from a few patches ago as an example - that was a big change to every single build in the game but everyone adapted and I am pretty certain that it was a change for good in the longer term…

The other changes are things like crafting - again, also big changes - in this case some things improved, others still need much more work… but they made dramatic changes…

Another aspect of this is that the devs are allowing builds to remain actively… i.e. we all dont get a character wipe for each major patch so we immediately think “Sh1t my build is ####ed” rather than “Hey, I like the new way to make a BD build” when everything is actually very fluid and we are all actually just beta testers…

The devs might not always respond to feedback (that would probably be impossible to do in a productive manner) but I am willing to bet there are a few of them lurking around, reading input and going… “Hey guys/gals/theys, there was this idea on the forum we could try” or “Damn, that change seems like it was too much for most players… lets try a different approach here”

What I am trying to say is that, right now, with the state of the game… these kinds of changes should be expected and yes, some might be crap but some might be good - its just hard to see when you have plunged 50h into a char and realise it no longer works and this clouds the entire point of testing the beta game…

So keep the feedback coming…



please remember it is far more useful to provide constructive feedback than just whine.

In that vein, what about the loss of these builds was fun while recognizing their power was too strong?

I suggest these guidlines for balance:

  1. Is it fun?
  2. Is it within the 20% of the power of the top 10% of optimal builds?
  3. Can it get to level 90 timelines?

If all of these are yes, then the build should be allowed to exist. The fun part is hard because sometimes, optimal is fun and more optimal is more fun.

For werebear i do see the fun. The issue was the power. I believe the current state is merely a band-aid until the druid rework.

For wandering spirits i think that is also including the spirit plague instances of infitine stacking which is fun but only reasonable when the you get logarithmic returns or less. I think this one might just need some more numbers tuning. From my understanding, the build was so reliant on spirit plague stacking that it lost most of its damage. Now that spirit plague has lost much of its previous power now other skills can be brought up to its level.

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I notice they directly talk to players on reddit. Maybe because of more public access to negative and positive opinions?

A Dev is literally responding on Discord right now.

They are pretty responsive on Discord.