Veteran players are understandably less than thrilled when they hit Diablo III's 60th level. Fortunately, Blizzard is adding 100 new levels - all of which will roll out under the auspices of the "Paragon System" when version 1.0.4. of the game goes live.
According to Blizzard exec Jay Wilson, patch 1.0.4 was coded to address two major issues - what to do with Magic Find and how to give level-60 players who aren't satisfied with the item hunt something more to strive for.
"We understand that some players feel frustrated once they hit level 60 because they no longer feel like they're making progress," Wilson explained in an official blog post.
"[Yes], it can be demoralizing to play for an hour, not get any drops, and also be out a big chunk of gold from repair costs. Your play session may not only end without an upgrade, it can wind up being a net loss. Everyone wants to feel like they're making some progress when they log in, even if they don't get that new sword."
As such, after players hit level 60, any further experience they earn from killing monsters will begin to count toward Paragon levels. The completion of every Paragon level offers rewards, including Strength, Dexterity, Intelligence and Vitality, as well as a 3% Magic Find and 3% Gold Find.
"We know that a lot of you out there are level 60 - maybe on multiple characters - and this system provides a way to make progress every time you log in to the game. So to support the new system, Nephalem Valor (NV) will now also provide a 15% experience bonus per stack, applicable toward Paragon levels," said Wilson.
"The first Paragon level should take about as long as it took most players to get from level 59 to 60, and the experience requirement will rise from there. The time to reach the upper Paragon levels approximates the long-term time investment required to get a level 99 character in Diablo II."
The Paragon system will also cap Magic Find and Gold Find to 300% - before Nephalem Valor. Essentially, this means that without any Magic Find gear at all, players will hit the cap when they reach Paragon level 100. This way, they can continue wearing their current Magic Find gear while slowly but surely work to gain Paragon levels.
"Eventually, once you hit Paragon level 100, you'll have the freedom to completely focus every slot on stats that help your character kill stuff faster and stay alive longer. The idea is that if you're currently swapping gear in and out for the Magic Find bonuses, you can continue to do so... But gain enough Paragon levels, and you won't need to anymore," he added.