Data on Defensive Stats in 1.2.1

In the interest of running some more comprehensive numbers, I went through and collected before and after (incorporating the playtest patch) stats for four defensive metrics: physical resistance, armor, defensive ability, and health (the latter two did not matter much but a few items and affixes replaced physical resistance with something like DA or health so I figured why not take a quick look at them). I looked at 28 different builds, most of which were either made on 1.2 or upgraded since 1.2 came online.

Before the playtest patch, the 28 builds had a median physical resistance of 39, with a 20th percentile figure of 34 and an 80th percentile figure of 49. For armor, the median value was 2,297 with 20th and 80th percentile figures of 1,815 and 2,882. As of now, these builds have a median physical resistance of 25, with a 20th percentile value of 18 and an 80th percentile value of 31. Armor has a median value of 2,494, with the 20th percentile coming in at 2,092 and the 80th percentile coming in at 3,278. The median physical resistance dropped by 14 or 36% and the median armor value increased by 197 or 8.6%. Changes to health or DA on account of replacing phys res, again, were not worth mentioning.

This is just data from 28 builds that I looked at specifically. If anyone else has run numbers on their builds, please feel free to post them here so we can gather more data on how some of these changes actually impact build stats in the real world.

“but what does these numbers mean”…
how are these builds in play now?

as Paikis mentions, several builds get hit by number change; but gets better ingame or feels the same

I think a lot of people seem to have missed the fact that enemies are just not hitting as hard. It isn’t just Physical Resistance removal. The mobs have been tuned down as well.

i haven’t found my low armour low phys res chars yet, those are the ones i’m most interested in, because seems like the “avg” chars from before still feels samey avg - and only thing that was hurt was celestial fights because no pharma stacking :sweat_smile:

The only character I have that was both low physical resist (24%) and also low armour (1,400 avg) was my Spellbreaker and it’s tankier now, but still squishy. My usual benchmark for a good build is being able to do SR80 in under 10 minutes with no deaths (hardcore BTW). The Spellbreaker still can’t do SR80, but it can do SR70 a lot easier than it could before. There’s more room for oopsies.

Yeah. I haven’t had a chance to run a shard of SR on 28 builds yet (that’s a lot of SR), but I did have time to a quick stat check comparison of the builds. Combine the two on enough builds and you can get a sense of what is a passable phys res number now. Obviously they are balancing the game assuming lower phys res now (hence monsters doing less). I can report back on more detail when I actually run all of the builds through SR, but I want the combination of numbers and what the numbers mean about gameplay feel. Numbers come first.

General SR runs are one thing to look at, but I am also curious about how the balancing was done. I understand why Zantai wouldn’t want to get too into the weeds on this, though. My thought is that if it is an across the board cut to monster phys damage, it is balanced around a certain type of hit and a certain amount of armor. So things that hit the hardest (thinking Ravager and a few other outliers) could be comparatively unbalanced. I’ve seen an example or two of Ravager hitting way harder, even without sunder, on this patch, and wonder if there are some outliers / super-spiky potential damage in certain situations. I’m fine running SR of course, but don’t really want to test celestials on an experimental patch on HC at this time.

because you can’t stack pharma; and ravager still does phys resist shred, but your armour is lower, so now you go into -phys res
*tho i did question too whether celestial dmg was included in the phys reduct overhaul :smile:

I had a chance to do a quick SR run on 13 of the 28 builds mentioned. I’ll be updating with some specific commentary on how the builds felt, though in a couple of cases the damage I received would have been less had the sunder reversion been in effect.

It does feel like there is a bit more spikiness in physical damage dealt. It’s hard to quantify this exactly, but it’s a general sense I’ve had from how these builds felt in SR versus the last time I ran SR with them.

The fire AAR sorceror, Light’s Defender savagery / totem build, and cold reaper with very low armor felt noticeably the worst compared to what I remember them being like previously. Not surprisingly, melee builds with more armor (at least 2k prior to this patch so likely more now) or that lost a lower percentage of physical resistance felt better, relatively speaking. My Dark One’s ritualist still feels pretty great, even though it lost a good bit of phys res and it’s armor is fairly lacking. Oh, and Light’s Defender feels pretty bad right now.

Will try to update with some more details when I get a chance. The sunder reversion and working on reducing phys RR that monsters do probably mitigate some of this.

Okay. So looking at data from before / after phys res and armor values, I put together a rough formula to see what feels worse and what feels better. I take the percentage damage increase from physical damage due to phys res changes and subtract the increase in armor value. I am aware of course that phys res reduces incoming damage by a percentage and armor reduces incoming damage by a flat amount (and armor isn’t useful for internal trauma), but sometimes a rough back of the envelope calculation just works. 15% is around the range where things feel equal to before. When the number rises too much above 15%, they start to feel worse, and when it gets lower, they start to feel better. There are some exceptions to this, and the increased damage matters less of course when you have really good sustain.

So if you are taking 25% more physical damage due to the phys res loss and have 10% more armor, things mostly feel similar. There are more damage spikes because of sunder, the fact that this relationship breaks down more for the hardest hitting physical damage enemies in the game, and enemies still reducing physical resistance more than they should. Sunder’s reversion and the fewer sources of physical RR in the next iteration eliminate two of these variables, but sometimes Iron Maiden or Benny are just going to hurt a lot, and this will definitely be the case for celestials. Builds that had really low armor also are going to benefit less from any percentage increase in armor.

Myrmidon oppressor still feels pretty good, because that build never had a ton of phys res and always used armor and max all resists for defense. Light’s Defender elementalist and purifier both feel much worse. Low armor channeling casters that lost most of their phys res for a bit more armor (starting from a low base) feel worse (e.g. fire AAR sorc). Incidentally, Light’s Defender really could use phys res as a set bonus. SR Set cold spellbreakers, Stormserpent lightning trickster, chaos spam aegis shieldbreaker, Dark One’s spam BH ritualist, Deathguard reaper, and Pusquil’s witch hunter all feel pretty okay with the caveat about there being a bit more spiky damage, though I’d expect much of this to go away with the reversion of sunder and fewer sources of phys RR.

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I was going to wait for the new version of the patch to drop, but decided to start running SR80 on my various builds. I typically run SR65-66 as a sort of, “This build has done what it needs to do, time for the next alt” but decided to push myself to do a bunch of SR80 runs to get a better sense of where the limits are for the builds and what they can do. Tried to avoid as many sunders as reasonable because this is HC and I don’t want to needlessly RIP characters.

Valdun Tactician (Tactician, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) still felt a bit on the squishy side, but was able to slowly work through SR80. Made the timer, but ended up being close because I played cautious.

Myrmidon Oppressor (Oppressor, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) had to be careful in a couple of places, but mostly held its own. Played this one a bit more aggressively.

Light’s Defender Elementalist (Elementalist, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) felt better than I thought it would. I think I learned I just have to play this one a bit less aggressively. I still think this is one of the sets that feels worse in the new patch, but the option to kite and let totems do the work helped get me through.

Malkadarr Reaper (Reaper, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) definitely felt close to the limits of where it should go. Phys res is around 25%, but the armor on this build is very low, so percent increases don’t make it feel too much better. Depended a lot of damage + leech to live.

Octavius Paladin (Paladin, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) felt fine, though I think it’s a pretty boring build to play. In a couple of spots, due to low-ish sustain, dropped back and let the runes do some work, but the option to weaken enemies with a rune or two before engaging helps. Armor / tankiness felt fine, just needs better sustain.

Chillwhisper Reaper (Reaper, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) was the only build that ended up needing a cluster (fighting Fabius in boss room). This wasn’t a full-on meme build, but cobbling a squishy set and cold RE conduit together was interesting. The RE and blade spirits do let you kite a bit, though I try to add melee damage when possible.

Warborn Death Knight (Death Knight, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) felt fine. Shocking, Warborn feeling good in SR. I know.

Loxmere Cold Spellbreaker (Spellbreaker, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) felt fine too. I think most of the melee builds using SR Set will probably feel pretty decent. SR Set has always been good for, well, SR.

Stormserpent Stormheart Trickster (Trickster, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) had a bit of an awkward run-in with Iron Maiden. Otherwise, seemed pretty reasonable if I play carefully. Completely shredded Fabius who can be a nightmare for some cold builds.

Chaos Savagery Conjurer (Conjurer, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) probably still needs to make some devotion updates for 1.2, but felt fine. Moves a bit slower in between doom bolts. Didn’t end up even proccing Harbinger circuitbreaker, so probably okay.

Malkadarr Spellbreaker (Spellbreaker, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) had a pretty easy no drama run. SR Set making things pretty straightforward again.

Blazerush Vanquisher Templar (Templar, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) needs a bit of care at this level in SR, but mostly just because skaters can be a bit reckless to play. Got Rashalga in the boss room, played it slow and just nuked her into oblivion with CT when mirror was available because she makes me paranoid. Fabius was a bit of a pain too.

Pusquill Witch Hunter (Witch Hunter, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) felt pretty good. Nothing particularly interesting to report. Just a smooth run.

Spam BH Dark One’s Ritualist (Ritualist, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) felt pretty good. Health bar moves a bit with big physical hits since there’s not a ton of armor or phys res anymore, but the healing is pretty much instant. Just don’t get one-shot.

Deathguard Reaper (Reaper, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) reminds me why I used to remember people saying that reaper is a squishy class. Damage and leech are very solid, but you need to be careful, use mark of torment opportunistically, keep moving, and keep doing damage. One of the scarier piloting experiences, especially fighting Moosi.

Acid RATA Sentinel (Sentinel, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) is probably not a good build. It’s a couple years old and probably a mess in more ways than one (I will probably never bother to fix it because I just like other aegis builds better). Screen flashed red once and altogether just didn’t feel good in SR80. Got the job done, though, barely.

Belgo Blademaster (Blademaster, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) felt solidly middle of the pack compared to some of the other builds I tested. No real danger points, but a bit less smooth than some like the acid WH and cold spellbreakers.

Chillflame Evoker Sabo SR Set (Saboteur, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) felt a bit squishier than the cold spellbreakers except for having blast shield, which was invaluable. Pretty comfortable run overall, no panic, just a few extra swings in the HP bar waiting for blast shield to go off.

Harbinger Witch Hunter (Witch Hunter, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) felt fine. Did drop to half health and proc Harbinger once. Otherwise solid.

Chaos Spam Aegis Shieldbreaker (Shieldbreaker, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) was pretty comfortable throughout. HP pool on this one and blast shield stopped it from ever truly feeling like it was in any real danger.

Fire TSS / RoK Mage Hunter (Mage Hunter, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) had a bit of an adventure in the boss room when I accidentally pulled Aleks into a fight with Sister Crimson and then accidentally pulled Durg into a fight with both of them still alive. Don’t triple pull bosses on something that’s not a tank. Used a rare cluster to stay alive during the triple boss fight. Otherwise pretty good at killing enemies from a distance and fine in SR80.

Chaos Shattering Smash Sentinel (Sentinel, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) feels the phys res nerf more than most of my builds. Lost a ton of phys res versus the gain in armor. Probably worth respeccing components and will do so once the patch is finalized and officially released.

Rah’Zin Witch Hunter (Witch Hunter, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) felt good. Usually more of a single target damage build versus SR, but this version felt fine in SR, especially when you can focus on elites and nemesis bosses to make progress.

Fire Spellbreaker (Spellbreaker, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) definitely is on the squishy side. Basically has Light’s Defender level of phys res as a melee build since Ember’s Calling has no phys res.

Light’s Defender Purifier (Purifier, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator) struggled against Valdaran and didn’t have a great time against the triple watchers. You can feel the lack of phys res even if armor compensates a bit. Much better when you can fall back and hit enemies from a distance.

This is most of what I plan to test. I have a few other builds that I’ve been farming for before I really want to push them into any real content and a couple of builds I’m currently finishing, but figured I’d mostly stick to finished builds I was done farming for.


Funnily enough, my Version of this build feels waay better in SR now (i didnt update for 1.2.1 yet but only few points got shuffeld arround).

A few tips for NB’s:

  1. dont overcap dualblades on 1.2.1 except you have direct use for the flat pierce damage
  2. Always put at least 8 points in Veil of Shadow, preferably softcap it. The range is necessary for to apply RR / debuff all enemies arround you and it has high effective DA (which is very good this patch)
  3. Try replacing Reaping strike with AQC it deals more damage and the animation is quicker → higher dps → less leach required (and this build already has enough leech lel)
  4. you have Yugol + Ill Omen, thats redundand choose 1
  5. definetly take 1p in RoS + CoS for the fumble

I’ll probably fiddle around with the stat points once things get finalized and I know exactly where the phys res breakpoints are (this is pretty much all 1.2 stuff that I haven’t changed yet). I tend to agree soft-cap is probably better on 1.2.1. The other stuff is reasonable, though Yugol + Revenant on cold leech-based builds is kind of my old comfy standard (I really like the Yugol stat nodes even without the proc) and the extra damage reduction from ill omen is something I do like. RoS is kind of 50/50 for me, sometimes I take it for the fumble, sometimes I want one less button to click. I think we all have our quirks. Nonetheless, always appreciate seeing thoughts on possible changes.

The question is should the Malkadarr Reaper actually need to be that optimised with skills replaced due to a patch?
Grigor yours is probably BiS-optmised skills only designed build, I would like to think builds that worked well before without fully embracing min-max concept should still do so.
That said I appreciate this is SR80.

This context also applies to other builds.

@Farnsworth i dont 100% understand what you are asking but i try.

Yes if something gets buffed / nerfed or changed in general you should be able to adapt to that change. If a game like GD should be changed in general thats up to you.

The items themself are BiS, but rolls/affixes, not really. Also keep in mind that HC and SC do things differently but i did not respond to things that apply to that specifically.

I mean here i could agree to disagree in balancing philosophy. I personally feel that the game should be balanced around builds with no to few mistakes in them, for SR 80 ofc.

i don’t know if the scaling changed, or if base/original scaling was impacted more or less by 2.1
but i had some, not really “strange” encounters, but more like “stark contrasting” encounters, where chars that didn’t do 75-76 before, would clear 80 with great difficulty/adversity, but then going to 75-76 was suddenly manageable or easy.
Where before 1.2 (and 1.2.1) it was more like if 76 and 80 was a bit closer in terms of clear issues, 80 still being harder but if they had this many deaths/struggle on 80 they would in general struggle fairly on 75 too. But seems like that gap has gotten a bit farther apart now, atleast for couple squishier chars

Best guess is that the sunder, which is mostly avoidable outside some sketchy double pulls and such (maybe not 100% accurately, but mostly), was offset my monsters doing reduced phys damage in 1.2 to begin with. So it was worse if you didn’t learn to avoid sunder, but a bit better otherwise. Makes for a few interesting interactions like Valdaran being comparatively scarier than he used to be, at least in my experience.

no sunder is irrelevant there as comparison, specially since it can be equally avoided for me on 75 vs 80
so it’s purely the incoming trash dmg and ofc boss dmg too that makes the difference for those chars/runs and deaths

Thanks the feedback, a lot of interesting builds!

how does your Valdun Tactician survive in SR and against super bosses without Ghoul and without any healing devotions?

I decided to remove Ghoul in favor of Turtle on a lot of builds in 1.2. There are a few exceptions where I’ve kept Ghoul, but for the most part the lower cooldown on Turtle is something I prefer. I do think Ghoul is more interesting now on 1.2.1 with keeping its phys res and the other buffs that were previously added to it, though.

Build survives SR by staying in the seal as much as possible to mitigate DoTs and some shotgun-type skills and by relying on leech. It’s not a super-high sustain build, but it’s kind of in good enough territory. Something like Dual Havoc is, IMO, just better than Valdun in pretty much every way. Valdun doesn’t give enough extra damage to make up for the increased tankiness you can get on a Havoc setup.

I took the liberty to make some changes to your setup:

Tactician, Valdun

  • more aggressive augment on the weapon for flat pierce
  • belt: flat pierce, armor piercing, armor, ele to pierce
  • Bladetwister + Jaxxon Lucky Bullet (not sure if it’s optimum choice of rings)
  • Iron Maiden shoulderguards to max Cadence, but of course Cutthroat / of Attack is best in slot, not sure if it is obtainable
  • another devotion map: i dropped Unknown Soldier and Empty Throne to get Crab (another defensive layer + flat elemental is ~75% converted to pierce), Ghoul + Behemoth.
  • Restless Remains in the gloves for adcth.

I wonder how this setup would perform.