Yesterday I thought of an additional game mode, chosen at the start of a new game, toggled like Hardcore is. What would be different? Enemies get doubled health and doubled damage and to compensate (or the other way round?) you get to choose from 3 classes, at levels 2, 8, 12 and you get 4 skill points per level till level 50 and then 3 (and then later, when it changes to 1 in the normal game, you get 2).
That would make the game more demanding and difficult (“doubled” is just an idea, maybe that would need a correction of some sorts) but would open many new different builds, overpowered for the normal game but just right for this mode. A full-elemental gunslinger with Arcanist, Demolitionist and Inquisitor. Or a Pet-Master with Shaman, Necromancer and Occultist. Shaman, Soldier and Nightblade for the ultimate Two-Handed warrior (just joking, that would be pretty stupid). And you could finally fully utilize those yummy legendary items that give buffs to skills of three different classes.
And a shit ton of work for the devs to rebalance the whole game and expansions yet again. Not to mention having to increase the level cap to manage 3 masteries.
You are basically asking them to develop a completely new game, not just a difficulty mode. And tack it onto this game like a new difficulty mode. Knowing that it would have limited (or no) value for many players who already own the game, and enjoy it with or without mods.
I would much prefer that Crate continue to develop their new City-builder game, if they are going to devote so much time and energy developing a whole new game.
You would be better off asking skilled Modders to try your idea, and see how “easy” it would (not) be to do, and do well, in a “reasonable” amount of time.
Just my 2¢.
Why balance? If you find a good balance between having three masteries and buffing the enemies, you don’t need additional balancing.
And the level-cap wouldn’t have to be raised if you just get more skillpoints. 4 instead of 3 skillpoints per lvl would mean that you can fill up an addtional mastery by lvl 50. That would be enough imho.
Ok, seems like my lack of knowledge in programming games is superior to my imagination, haha
Have a look at Grimmest if you want more difficulty. You can adjust the spawn rates for mobs/heroes with that mod.
It also included in the Grimarillion mod which would give you more masteries to play with since it adds masteries from Titan Quest, D3 and also a mod called Zenith.
Believe me, even on the lightest Grimmest setting of Alcoholic you’ll often be running into 5-7 heroes at a time.