Path of Exile tweaks balance and Expedition drop rates ahead of Royale weekend

    
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Path of Exile’s hardest core fanbase has been roiling for a few weeks now, unhappy with the proposition of, launch of, and state of the game and its Expedition League. Reddit, for example, is still grumpy over everything from perceived population dips to drop rates. Grinding Gear hasn’t been sitting around twiddling its thumbs, however, as the console edition of the expansion went live Wednesday and now the latest update is out in the wild.

“Yesterday, we released Patch 3.15.0e which introduced several changes and bug fixes to Path of Exile alongside some balance changes for Royale ahead of our next Royale weekend,” the studio says. “This week’s changes are mostly focused on increasing the variety of viable build options, reducing the chance of feeling stuck at level 1, and fixing a few lingering issues.” There’s also a change for the aforementioned drop rates.

“We’re changing the drop rates for the various Expedition NPC’s reroll currency. The plan is that they’ll drop from Runic Monsters in stacks (rather than as single drops) that scale up in quantity based on monster level, making them more common. Note that this change will affect Runic Monsters only, and drops from Excavated Chests will remain unchanged. Artifacts will also scale up in the same way, providing more in the endgame. While you’ll ultimately get more reroll currency for Dannig, Rog and Tujen because of the increased stack sizes, the drop chance has remained unchanged with the exception of Astragali (Gwennen’s reroll currency), which has had its drop rate slightly lowered in maps. It was already far more common than the other ones.”

Edit: Royale weekend is live!

Source: Patch notes
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Ashfyn Ninegold

Gotta say their desire to balance for league runners and top twitchers has really turned me off the game.

What about us ordinary folks who don’t farm, don’t race, don’t min/max but just want to play through a good ARPG?

Argh, back to Inquisitor.

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Vanquesse V

I think most streamers are well aware that this patch is hurting them way less than anyone else (with a few loud exceptions), but they also know that they have to keep playing if they want to make any money.
Switching from being a 1 game stream to either another game, or a variety channel is incredibly difficult and not something you do from one day to the next.
Having said that, seeing streamers who are playing one of the 3 top meta skills say that the game is getting unwarranted hate pisses me off greatly.

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Dug From The Earth

The game just isnt as fun anymore.

Its just kinda dull, sluggish, and overly punishing now.

The “face tank” label people are giving this season is pretty spot on.

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Greaterdivinity

Man, patch still needs a lot of work. Most of the new skills are kinda garbage (Shield Crush is the only one that seems fairly solid if we’re ignoring the likely bugged gems) and even with some buffs skills like Absolution and Reaper are still painfully underwhelming and not worth the investment.

I’ve been forcing myself to play a bit because I like the idea behind Absolution, but man is it underwhelming to play even as I’m constantly trying to tweak my build to make it more effective. Since I don’t want to level another character and likely don’t want to swap to Dominating Blow or a 6L Herald of Purity (done both before), and the fact that I’m not a fan of the current league mechanic (very RIPPY, too time consuming, map-mechanic is painfully unrewarding, too many bloody clicks), I might peace outta this one before I even hit red maps.

The greedy jerk in me wishes they weren’t “wasting” time with BR nonsense, but apparently folks are enjoying it so that’s nice. Just wish it didn’t “feel” like it came at the expense of the core game a bit.

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Vanquesse V

As far as I know the buff to absolution is the biggest numerical buff to a skill ever, and it’s probably not enough to make it a decent skill. I think that says a lot about the thought that goes into creating new skills at the moment.
If you can get the item for it, you could try a holy relic build which is kind of a middle ground between herald of agony and herald of purity.

I don’t care about BR and will likely never try it, but releasing unviable skills has been their thing for a while – shoutout to stormbind, a skill that launched in 3.10, was dead on arrival and hasn’t seen any changes since.

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Greaterdivinity

Even after the buff it’s garbage. Just spent about 10 minutes tinkering around in PoB and while it’ll require a bit of work (Coming Calamity as chest being the biggest bit, likely) a 6L HoP just crushes it on so many levels it’s not even funny. Didn’t do anything outrageous to the build (Wrath -> Pride, Dread Banner, removed a few passive points to get a Minion cluster with impale chance) and that does nearly 7x the damage, 280Kish vs. 40kish. And that’s not even factoring in something like Circle of Guilt which can easily push those umbers WAY up.

I guess I can still use Absolution to proc HoP minions at range and all, but man is it depressing that the skill seems like such utter and total garbage. I was really looking forward to a “caster army” theme this league, but between concerns about skele mage scaling in a 4L (can’t use 6L staff sadly) and how weak Absolution is it seems my dreams are crushed and “the same old builds we’ve been playing forever are still mostly the best.”

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Dug From The Earth

And yet, even WITH the buff, it only feels mediocre at best.

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Greaterdivinity

Between this and the nonsense going on with Reaper, we should have all known better than to try out new gems as a league start. Shield Crush seems to be the only one actually functional/competitive, and that’s in part because of how popular Glads are this league.

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Dug From The Earth

I also tried out Storm Rain.

Tried it self cast and played it like a toxic rain playstyle
Tried it in ballistas
Tried it in mines (yes, mines)

In all cases, its just pretty awful. It felt best self cast, but felt like a more awful version of Toxic Rain. It would constantly only clear about 80% of the enemies within its radius, and felt like you had to shoot it a LOT more often than you would if you were playing Toxic Rain.

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Vanquesse V

Spectral Helix is very powerful: it’s spectral throw, but without the need of GMP, and with the damage scaling of a slam, but without any attack speed nerfs.

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Greaterdivinity

I dunno, my brother league started with that and is having a helluva time getting it working “well”. I forget what he’s trying now, but he’s tried a few different flavors (trinity with ele damage last) and it’s been…kinda “eh” even with some lucky drops.

It’s pretty good for clear, but single target is kinda lacking. Also, maybe it’s his weapon (though he’s tried multiple different skins) but damn if it’s not freakin impossible to see those little things most of the time. And he’s way better at the game than I am.

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Vanquesse V

Yes because they didn’t fix any of the issues with the skill. You can’t properly scale the damage of the skill, there’s not enough minions, and the skill doesn’t synergise well with other minions, and minion builds can’t really get the cast speed needed for the skill either. You also don’t get a minion proc on hitting rares as you do with dom blow.
So all they did was delay the point where the skill is unusable.

It’s a cool skill, but it has no place in poe right now.