Diablo 4 1.2.0 Update: Massive Changes Coming to Classes, Gameplay, and Items
Diablo 4 is always expanding as Blizzard steadily adds new seasonal content and brings fresh features to the game via patches or updates. With the upcoming Season of Blood looming over the horizon, the developer has prepared some massive changes to classes, gameplay, items, and more. The 1.2.0 update packs the biggest punch of fresh content for Diablo 4 to date, delivering more changes than any previous patch has. Season 2 is certainly nothing to scoff at, whether you consider its balance adjustments or its brand-new features.
Armor System Overhaul
The Diablo 4 patch notes detail a variety of additions and changes, from necromancer minion buffs to a reworked armor system. Multiple adjustments are coming to armor to make it a more effective system. You’ll notice your armor plays a different role now, with legendary aspects such as Disobedience and Snowveiled seeing significant armor percentage value buffs.
You’ll also see that non-physical damage reduction from armor and resistances are no longer split, which means that resistances contribute their full value to non-physical damage reduction. Armor no longer contributes to non-physical damage reduction, instead only reducing damage against physical damage. If you’re familiar with Path of Exile and its own systems, you may notice that the Diablo 4 changes make Blizzard’s feel pretty similar.
Damage Calculation Changes
The way the game calculates damage is changing, too. Prior to the 1.2.0 update, builds that utilized critical strike damage and vulnerable damage were too powerful. Blizzard explains the issue by describing that it was “because these stats were previously calculated as part of separate damage buckets that were fully multiplicative when combined with other damage bonuses.” To combat the disproportionate power, both kinds of damage will always have a baseline multiplicative bonus.
Additional sources of bonus critical Strike Damage, vulnerable Damage, or overpower damage will be additive to your other damage bonuses. Overpower will also receive additive damage based on your max health and fortify amounts. Blizzard explains that the team isn’t trying to “lower the power of the best builds, but rather allow more builds to reach that same level of power” and is also bringing “a variety of mechanics” to classes that encourage players to go after other stats for multiplicative bonuses.
Class Changes and Overhauls
Among the many class buffs and changes is an overhaul to the way that necromancer minions work. The effect of the Death’s Defense passive is now an inherit attribute for all summons, including the necromancer’s minions and druid’s companions. The Skeletal Warriors Inherit Thorns, Skeletal Mages Inherit Thorns, and Golem Inherits Thorns affixes have been combined into a single affix, Minions Inherit Thorns. A new affix, Minions Inherit Critical Strike Chance, is also coming with the update.
When you pick blood orbs up, you’ll heal your minions 15% of your own max life. Various passive and paragon effects regarding minions are now different, with abilities such as Death’s Defense buffed. While the update does nerf the powerful Bone Spear build, minions are much more useful now. Necromancer isn’t the only overhauled class, though. Barbarian, druid, rogue, and sorcerer players will also see class changes, including damage increases.
Gradual Item Scaling
Alongside class changes comes a new gradual increase in item scaling as you level up. No longer will you obtain a full gear set at level 70 and not get a better one until level 100. Since this is the biggest Diablo 4 update yet, though, there is so much more coming including new bosses and items. You can expect to see all of this come to fruition in-game when 1.2.0 drops on Tuesday, October 17.
For a more in-depth look at all of the new features and gameplay changes coming to Diablo 4 with the 1.2.0 update, head over to Blizzard’s official list of patch notes. It may take you a while to get through them all, but you still have a bit of time before the Season of Blood. The second season and its content will accompany the arrival of Diablo 4 on Steam, so be sure to save the date.
If you want to perfect your character before the giant update, be sure to browse through our guide on the best Diablo 4 builds. Alternatively, you can take a look at our ranking of all of the Diablo 4 classes if you want to change your gameplay up a bit during the Season of Blood. You’ll never know which class suits you personally until you have a try at all of them.