The feast is coming.
As you read on, you’ll learn about The Loot Update coming
next Tuesday. [Update: The Loot Update is now coming May 23rd. As we were going through our final playtests, we felt we needed an extra week to get it right. More information is available here.]
This update delivers the loot and progression improvements we’ve been cryptically teasing. We’re eager to share these succulent details, as we’re sure you’re eager to gobble them up. But soon, the feast will arrive. You’ll be treated to a five-course meal stuffed with details of our release plans. You’ll discover when we’re releasing and what we have planned between now and that fateful day. There are surprises in store for you, too, but we won’t spoil those now. Not yet.
As you saw with The Spring Forward update, and as you’re going to see in next week’s Loot Update, we’re working on more system improvements. More quality-of-life changes. More bug fixes. More polish. We’ve made a lot of changes to our game during our 2+ years in Early Access. After your feast, the guests will arrive -- the hungry masses of new and returning players -- and we’re going to make sure Dungeon Defenders II is ready for them.
We’ve been working on a series of changes that takes the new loot system from the Trials update and tweaks it to make loot more interesting and more intuitive. It applies the feedback we’ve received since the Trials update and instills more of the spirit of the loot system from the original Dungeon Defenders. These changes will apply to all new drops once the update comes out; your current gear will be unaffected. We hope you’ll enjoy the following changes when they come out next Tuesday:
New Stat Rolling System
Before this update, rarity affected the stats on loot -- the higher the rarity, the higher the stat roll. This was intended to make higher rarities desirable, but this was actually making progression slower than intended and caused roadblocks in progression. Equipped Legendaries (and even Mythicals) would increase the time until your next stat upgrade, and in some cases, it stopped intended stat upgrades from appearing at the end of a Chaos tier. We’ve removed this, and in its place, we’ve made some exciting changes to rarities to make them worthwhile to find. You’ll discover these changes later in this blog.
Something else that’s plagued loot in DD2 is its lack of multi-dimensionality. When you look back at the first Dungeon Defenders, the loot system begged you to give every loot drop a chance. There wasn’t always a simple “yes” or “no” of whether an item was better for you. Stats on loot rolled individually, so there were vastly more implications when deciding if a drop was better or worse for you. Say an item rolled with Defense Power and Defense Health. Perhaps Defense Power rolled higher than your current gear, but Defense Health rolled lower. Is that a tradeoff you’re willing to make? Is power worth more than health for your particular build? Worth more at this point in your progression? Is it bad for one hero but better for another? This kind of decision making was a driving force in DD1 in both the main progression and in the endgame.
With that spirit in mind, loot stats will now roll independently from each other! This should instill more of those interesting decisions into loot, and at the same time, it’ll introduce sidegrade opportunities to improve your speed of progression!
4 Stats on Legendaries!
Legendaries are going to roll with an additional stat! If Legendaries are going to be rare, then you should mess yourself a little when you see that golden beam rising toward the heavens. Throughout our Early Access period, we’ve learned (and you’ve learned) that you don’t need that extra stat in order to succeed. But there was a certain joy in DD1’s loot when all of those beautiful stats rolled on a single item. It was that little extra push to keep playing and keep hunting. This change should make Legendaries feel just that much more special. Along with this change...
New Upgrade Ranges
Rarities have new upgrade ranges! Each rarity has its own unique range, which means a Legendary loot drop will always have more upgrades than a Mythical, which will always have more upgrades than an Epic, and so on. The final upgrade ranges are still being tweaked and will be available in the patch notes next week.
Along with this, upgrades will now roll in all numbers across their range. Something we’ve heard from our min/max players is that it was just a little too easy to find perfect gear, which really is the driving factor to keep playing DD2 as it was in DD1. These upgrade changes should ensure that higher rarities retain their usefulness and power while providing just a little bit more to look for.
Increased Armor & Weapon Shard Slots to 3
We’ve also increased the Armor and Weapon Shard Slots from 2 to 3! Even better, these 3 Shard Slots will appear on both Legendary AND Mythical loot! We can’t wait to see what new builds you’ll create with these changes.
Increased Loot Drops
We’ve increased the amount of loot that drops in Trials by about 50%!
Loot Rolls Based on the Most Powerful Hero in Your Deck
One of the most common confusion points of our new loot system was how loot generated. Before this update, loot generated based on the average stat power of every hero in your deck, so if you had heroes with worse stats than others, the generated loot would be worse. In this update, loot will generate based on the most powerful hero in your deck. You won’t have to remove your other 3 heroes before Combat Phase just to get the best loot. Based on our playtesting, this change alone removes a lot of the WTF moments from our new loot system.
Increased Stat Roll Ranges
Speaking of loot generation, loot is generated in a +/- range around your equipped gear. Currently, that +/- range is fairly small. There aren’t enough of those “wow” moments of finding a loot drop with big stat upgrades -- not enough of those “power spike” moments. We’re increasing this range so that power spikes happen more frequently. Another thing to note is that with the new individual stat rolling, items that would previously be an across-the-board “-” roll (since both stats rolled in identical numbers) could now become possible upgrades!
Higher Loot Cap Per Chaos to Help Bridge the Gaps
For some players, moving between Chaos tiers was easy enough. For others, the gaps felt like an impenetrable wall. That’s what we’ve heard over and over since the Trials update.
In the loot system introduced in Trials, each Chaos tier drops better and better loot up to a certain point. Once you hit that point, you’ll need to move on to the next Chaos tier in order to keep finding better loot. With this update, we’re increasing the maximum loot cap per Chaos tier. If you can’t survive the leap to the next Chaos tier, you can now progress higher in your current tier. This additional power potential should decrease the gaps and increase your upward mobility.
Coming Up: Better In-Game Instructions
The above changes should make the system more intuitive, but we recognize that some elements need to be more explicitly stated. In the future, we’re going to include better in-game information to players about how loot works.
Coming Up: The Return of Unique Legendary Weapons
In the coming updates, our unique legendary weapons will return! Keep an eye on our blog for more details.
Increased Gold Rewards
Players weren’t earning enough gold in earlier Chaos tiers. For rough comparison, Chaos 1 only awarded around 13,000 gold per victory, while Chaos 7 awards around 56,000 gold.
So in this update, we’ve increased the gold rewards in all Chaos tiers below Chaos 7, with significant increases in the early Chaos tiers that taper off into the higher tiers. For example, Chaos 1 should now award closer to 21,000 gold, which is around a 60% increase in gold per victory! This should greatly help with the gold squeeze in earlier difficulties. It’s also worth noting that our increased loot drops will leave players with more gold than before. We’ll continue to monitor the gold-per-hour and gold-per-difficulty players achieve at these new values and make more adjustments if needed.
As a result, players will see an increase in gold earnings with this new patch, and that’s not even including the following change:
Consecutive Win Gold and XP Bonuses
In this update, we’re rounding out our Consecutive Win feature by introducing Gold and XP bonuses! You’ll begin to earn these bonuses on your 1st consecutive win (so on your 2nd overall victory), and these bonuses will grow up to a cap. The more you play, the more you’ll earn! (Also, we’re actively working on Matchmaking fixes. Several fixes will come out in this update, which includes possible solutions for being unable to continue after the end of a match, and more fixes are on the way soon. We’ll continue to make the Consecutive Win bonus and Matchmaking feel better and better!)
Experience and Ascension Updates
We’re happy with how fast players are earning Ascension levels when they’re playing at a challenging difficulty. But some players are farming much, much lower difficulties to earn Ascension levels at very fast rates, and it’s thrown off our estimate on how fast players would earn Ascension levels.
When we released Chaos 6 and Chaos 7, some players had steamrolled way ahead of our Ascension estimates by farming earlier Chaos difficulties. In essence, we had two audiences -- one that was at or near the target Ascension level for Chaos 6, and another group that had pulled way, way ahead. Balancing new difficulties for these two different audiences became quite challenging, and we realized we needed to close the gap between them a bit if we wanted to keep releasing new difficulties.
So, to help hit that goal, we’re making the following changes:
New Difficulty XP Bonuses and New XP Curve
Each higher Chaos difficulty gives much more experience. Chaos 5, by comparison, now awards several times more experience than it used to. This means that playing at higher difficulties gives much more experience than playing at lower difficulties.
But we’re also increasing the amount of experience required to earn each level. These changes combined mean that if you’re currently playing Chaos 5, it’s more efficient to farm Chaos 4 or Chaos 5 for experience rather than going all the way back down to Chaos 1. This change won’t alter your existing Ascension level, but it will update the amount of experience you need to reach the next level.
The time-to-level should not increase if you’re playing at a challenging difficulty, but it will increase if you’re playing at a difficulty way below where you should be. In practical terms, this means Chaos 1 will no longer be the most efficient difficulty for every player to earn Ascension levels, especially if you’re well over Ascension 200.
New Ascension Power Caps
While our first change is targeted at smoothing out the rate of progression and encouraging players to play harder difficulties, this next change is intended to limit the overall power of players who are many times over the target Ascension level for our hardest difficulty.
With Chaos 7 being our current hardest difficulty, we are lowering the cap on powers from 999 to somewhere in the mid-100s (roughly 140). Powers that were capped at 10, 15, or 20 are unchanged; only the powers that had 999 caps are affected. As we release harder difficulties, the cap will go up.
If you’re under Ascension level 400, this won’t affect you at all as you wouldn’t have enough points to hit any cap. But if you’re over Ascension 420 (roughly), you may notice you’re starting to hit caps that will require you to diversify your points rather than stacking them into a single power.
Accompanying this change will be a reset of all Ascension points, allowing all players to freely update their Ascension Powers. Our intent is to shrink the power gap a bit between our most dedicated fans (some of whom are over Ascension 1,000!) and the vast majority of our playerbase (most of whom are less than Ascension 300), so we can continue to release content that challenges both audiences in a timely fashion.
New Ascension Level Rewards
We didn’t want this update to be all redos and system updates, so we’ve included some new rewards for reaching higher Ascension levels!
Starting with Ascension level 100 (and continuing up to 1,000), players will earn rewards for hitting Ascension milestones. One of the rewards will be new titles, available to our more dedicated players who push the upper ends of Ascension.
We’d like to close by thanking all of our players who are helping to make DD2 a great game. You guys have totally amazed us with your dedication, and we hope you continue to support DD2 as we approach our official release!
The Trendy Team