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To Nerf or Not To Nerf?

Path of Exile veterans strive to develop their characters to their fullest potential. Choosing the right Path of Exile items to gain strength and durability through gameplay is important, but sometimes the results can be heavily skewed in one’s favor, resulting in some overpowering advantages. Here are a few such characteristics that the developers at Grinding Gear Games might consider toning down in the next update.

Double Dipping – Damage is classified into four categories: DoT, Spell, Attack, and Secondary. In general, double dipping is a maneuver that occurs within the context of a single attack with two effects. Damage occurs during both effects, resulting in primary and secondary damage. The delivery of the attack is scaled up in severity, whether it occurs as a trap, projectile, melee, or other relevant means. Additionally, the damage type, whether on an individual level, such as physical (bleeding), elemental (ignite), or chaos (poison), and even global damage, are also increased. By increasing the initial hit, the secondary hit is also increased, resulting in an overwhelming and devastating amount of damage inflicted on the adversary, which can be problematic for gameplay in many instances.

Power Creep – This is a phenomenon that can easily take the fun out of the game for many players. Power creep is used to describe a character build that has been developed to such a dominant level, that the balance of skill is heavily skewed to that character. Such Path of Exile characters run on a persistent “god-mode,” are virtually invincible to attack, and can clear an area within a couple minutes or less. Within a group, having a power creep on your team reduces the need for strategy and resource management. Gameplay is also affected, since their large attacks also must be animated accordingly, resulting in graphics issues (e.g. drops in fps) issues for players involved.

Frost Wall – The Frost Wall is impermeable to characters, monsters, and non-piercing projectiles. However, the effects of projectiles such as Lightning Arrow are amplified. Combined with Lightning Arrow, this may be the strongest attack in the game, inflicting the highest damage possible in the game. Additionally, when timed correctly, launching a Power Siphon at the Frost Wall results in the generation of a Power Charge, which is a highly effective killing blow.

Elemental Conflux – This is a buff where all damage types Chill, Shock, and Ignite are combined whenever a hit is dealt. This means that any attack will have those effects on the target even though the type of attack already has a different effect. Some PoE items will carry the effects of Chill, Shock, and Ignite, and will also have increased duration and damage along with those effects.

Cast on Critical Strike – The Cast of Critical Strike gem links spells to trigger alongside an attack when the latter is landed. This setup requires three gems: an Attack, Cast on Critical Strike, and a Spell. A devastatingly powerful maneuver, the CoC can also be applied as multiple casts on multiple enemies. Many players may feel that the efficacy of this technique can be nerfed, so as to prevent overuse, and preserve the challenge, especially at higher levels of development.

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