It may have already had months taking the PC Diablo 3 fanbase by storm, but Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls Ultimate Evil Edition only came to consoles this week. As a result, thousands of gamers around the world are dropping into the game not knowing exactly what to expect or what to do. Maybe you’re one of them. If so, then welcome to Twinfinite’s latest jaunt into the wonderful world of hints and tips. There’s nothing here to insult your intelligence with guidance like “Kill the things” or “Don’t Die”, more just small mechanical nuances and techniques which may slip by you the first few times diving into Reaper of Souls.
Sell Nothing… Except the Really Crap Stuff
Right from the outset Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls offers you the opportunity to sell items to a vendor for small amounts of gold. In most action RPGs selling unused equipment is par for the course and the only really sustainable way to earn gold to buy new gear for your character. In this game however, using a normal vendor to offload gear is tantamount to trading your clothes for beans. Not edible beans or the kind that sprout magical beanstalks. The kind of beans you find in a beanbag.
Not only does Diablo 3 delight in throwing gold at your face for simply walking over a corpse or stabbing a zombie in the face, it also lets you break down that Wizard’s hat into something more useful. Any gear that you obtain (except the really really trashy grey quality items which can be left on the ground where it lands) should be saved until completing the quest for the Skeleton King’s crown.
This quest comes into light within the first hour of gameplay and opens up the use of a blacksmith to salvage equipment. Salvaging gives you the base materials to create more armour and weapons without having to rely upon them dropping from the ass of a demon (well they don’t have pockets to hold a shield now do they?). Almost everything either has a use or can be turned into something with a use. Selling 99% of items for gold is a waste.
The major gold sink doesn’t even require that much cash to get the creative juices flowing. Speaking of which…
Invest in the Manufacturing Sector
The crux of Reaper of Souls may be the never-ending quest for better gear but sometimes the gods don’t smile upon you. No-one wants to be walking around in a full set of level 55 armour with level 23 shoes. That’s like wearing a $1300 dollar suit with those little plastic bag things you put on over your shoes at the pool. To fill in those little gaps you can go to meet Haedrig (the aforementioned Blacksmith) who will happily make some armour just for you. Like any business though he, along with his crafting buddies Covetous Shen the Jewelcrafter and Myriam the Mystic, needs some capital. It’s up to you to give them that cash.
There’s no reason really not to invest in these crafting merchants. Very rarely, even when putting every single coin of gold into training them, do you actually need any money. Vendors rarely sell anything worthwhile. The most important reason for investing any gold you have though is simple. Crafting progress is cross-character.
What this means is if you push the blacksmithing, enchanting and jewelcrafting capabilities available to one character, all of your future ones will be able to take the same benefits. Well, except from the Hardcore characters (who are totally contained within their own bubble) but as a beginner that’s probably not the best avenue to be looking down quite yet.
Friends with Benefits
People often say everything is better with friends. This often holds true in gaming and Diablo 3 is a prime example of this. Going with friends provides higher experience gains, better loot and someone to watch your backside when demons try to fillet it. The game is even so kind as to provide a selection of 3 digital buddies you can bring along for the ride. Like real friends, these should not be neglected.
Kormac the Templar, Lyndon the Scoundrel, and Eirena the Enchantress are all available to come along for the ride here. Each one provides a little boost to killing power along with a collection of skills you can mould to make them the perfect companion.
Taking one on your journey is always preferable to going out solo. Even if you’re a bonafide level 70 badass who laughs in the face of giant spiders, the small heal offered by Kormac or the polymorph Eirena can dish out will always be a help rather than a hindrance.
Just don’t forget to give them some of the gear you don’t need. It never hurts to have a buddy who can deal a little more damage than a brisk wind.
Start on Hard
As far as difficulty levels go, Reaper of Souls offers a veritable smorgasbord of options. Many of these are unlocked through further play but in the beginning, your options are Normal and Hard. Common practice dictates using the Normal difficulty for your first playthrough. For an enjoyable and rewarding experience though, you’ll want to start with Hard.
But surely that means your first play will be more difficult than necessary? Actually it won’t. Hard increases the quantity and quality of powerful items dropping at your feet while providing a delightful boost to experience gains of 75% over Normal. This leads to a greater speed in progression and as a result more abilities and runes are afforded to you during play. Battling through the game on Normal might be significantly easier than it is on Hard but when Hard is already far from a cerebral exercise, Normal is simply dull.
It also won’t prepare you for the rest of Diablo 3. This is a game where playing for tens, perhaps hundreds of hours, isn’t a rare occurrence. Getting up to level 70 as quickly as possible is pretty much one of the most important things you can do early on in your time with Reaper of Souls.
If you’re worried about certain bosses being too difficult then there’s no need to worry. At any time you can knock the difficulty down a notch.
(Don’t) Break the Chains
In the PC version of Reaper of Souls, destroying large amounts of enemies, breaking a load of objects or pummeling opponents with traps like chandeliers imparts a small experience bonus. On console however, these little combos act differently. Not in any bad way though. The bonuses are wonderful, adding a great deal both to the game and experience of Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls Ultimate Evil Edition.
If you’re quick enough.
Let’s start with killing a buttload of enemies in a row. After killing 10 enemies quickly a small counter kicks up on the screen with a small fuse burning across the top. As long as you are involved in combat by either dealing or taking damage, the fuse will keep resetting and giving you time to kill more enemies. The more you kill before the counter runs out, the greater amount of bonus experience you’ll get. It may not sound like much but when you’re taking out 100 enemies or more the bonus can be multiplied by up to three times. Keep this running with a few ranged attacks if you’re a melee character or a healthy portion of Area of Effect attacks when using a ranged character and you’ll find that experience bar shoots up at monumental speeds.
In addition to this, breaking seven or more environmental items will grant you a speed bonus. It is quite rare in some areas to find more than seven breakable objects but when they can be found, there is no reason to ignore them. Smash them up and you’ll move at a greater speed, both increasing the speed at which you can explore an area and find more enemies to tear apart for precious experience.
When starting out traps can often kill an enemy with a single hit. Traps take the form of various things like precarious water towers or ember-laden cages which, when brought down upon a foe, will grant a resource generation boost should one die. Increased resource generation allows you to dish out more damage at a higher rate, in turn racking up the kill combos and exploration speeds.
They may seem a little extraneous but when used correctly, these systems are incredibly helpful.
Do you have any tips for other Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls Ultimate Evil Edition beginners? Then let us know in the comments below!