Diablo 3 Character Builds: it’s like WoW mark 2

D3 news this week is that Blizzard have put up a web based Diablo 3 Skill Calculator so that you can stat up those hypothetical characters that you can’t yet create.

Blizzard have always borrowed generously from one game to the next. The original talent tree setup in WoW and many of the classic skills were based solidly on Diablo 2, so maybe it’s not such a great surprise to see the influence going back the other way also. If you look through the various characters’ lists of skills, you may see a few that look very familiar.

This time around, talent trees are also out, active skills are separated from passive skills, and glyphs (runestones) are done the way they really were intended. Incidentally, I remember blasting talent trees as a design feature a couple of years back so it’s nice to see that Blizz are finally getting with the programme 🙂

So to build a character, you pick out 6 active skills (each of which can be socketed with a runestone), then 3 passive ones. The runestones affect each skill in a different way, and have a huge effect on how that skill works. Stabs has cracked open a sample build for each class, which should give you an idea how they work — note that as the game is in beta, a lot of this could change before launch.

But mostly I am sitting here open mouthed, wondering how Blizzard could give a proper Bladestorm effect to the D3 monk (Seven Sided Strike) when they couldn’t manage that for my warrior.

If you’re planning to play Diablo 3, have you decided yet which class to pick first?