Skill upgrades will have bonus effects that rely on non-Primary Stats.
Blizzard Entertainment still doesn’t have a release window for Diablo 4 or even confirmation if it’s coming to Xbox Series X/S and PS5. But it does have a new quarterly update for the action RPG, this time detailing some of the feedback and improvements made with various systems. These include related skill nodes in the skill tree being grouped closer together.
The developer also discussed its philosophy on respeccing one’s skills. As lead game designer Joe Shely states, “Like many of you, we want choices to matter and characters to feel different from each other—not just one click away from being identical to all the others. We also want to encourage players to experiment with different skills when they start playing, and discover builds that are right for them.”
So while respeccing skills and passives will be allowed an unlimited number of times, it’ll cost you and this will increase as your character grows in power. If you want to change your build in the end-game, it will require “significant investment” to respec. Shely also spoke about Primary Stats and the changes they’re undergoing.
While certain classes will benefit from key stats – the Barbarian with Strength, for instance – other stats will provide meaningful benefits. In the Barbarian’s case, Willpower will provide more Fury generation while Dexterity increases critical chance. You also receive a secondary defense bonus but where it really gets interesting is the different bonus effects that can activate on certain skills.
One example provided was Whirlwind. One of its upgrades will remove any movement penalties that the skill causes. However, if you have 150 Dexterity, then you also receive the bonus effect of 3 percent increased movement speed while the skill is active, up to 15 percent. Another upgrade provides 10 percent increased critical strike damage. But if you have 225 Strength and Dexterity, then you’ll also receive the bonus effect 1 percent increased critical strike damage while the skill is active, up to 20 percent in total.d
The entire update is worth a read especially with regards to Item Qualities, Legendary Affixes and Uniques. Diablo 4 is currently in development for Xbox One, PS4 and PC. No new gameplay has been showcased since last year but perhaps there will be an update at next year’s BlizzConline.