The debate that’s still raging here is exactly why I don’t typically go into the metrics we look at, because it’s not that simple of an answer, nor is a particular metric a hard line by which all builds are judged.
As I said, there are a lot of factors that need to be considered (aoe, single target, consistency, mutators, consumables, difficulty of acquiring gear, crucible arena, etc. etc. etc…). What I said, and what has always been the case, is that builds that fall outside of the range I mentioned are what we look at more closely.
Regarding toxicity/build criticism: the discussion is drifting away from this at the moment so I don’t want to shift back there too much but just share my personal experience in response to what has been discussed.
I haven’t been around these forums for that long, but my first impression of the build section was a group of friends bantering and sharing tips to optimise stuff. The few times I have seen even somewhat out of line behaviour, it is rare and is resolved with tact and mutual understanding rather than endless flaming.
I can understand people being afraid to post builds, since I am shy, myself, but I think if you define the scope of your post as looking for help and are clearly not trying to join the efficiency race, you’re going to be treated fairly and not dismantled like if you had your cruci time front and center.
Like spanks said, toxicity sometimes happens (human nature) , but we’re pretty supportive people here and the attitude is way better than any other equivalent board for this kind of game etc. I haven’t felt in my few months posting that this is anything but a friendly place. Some of my early posts were erring on toxic until the vibe around here mellowed me out a bit, so that’s a good reflection of the quality of this community in itself. Has definitely made me a better internet citizen.
Regarding toxicity, I don’t think this forum has a big problem with that, but I don’t think it’s directly related to Zantai’s point either. The issue is that if top-tier builds aren’t toned down enough, the overall discourse becomes one that claims only the few, specific very powerful builds are viable. Viable, in its original meaning, means worth playing at all. If only a few builds are worth playing at all, the others are trap options. Then if that discourse spreads to other sites, Grim Dawn gets a reputation as poorly balanced and badly designed, offering tons of meaningless and useless skills and builds. Nerfs are the only way to control that discourse.
And people can obviously chase others away without being toxic. What do you think would happen right now if someone went into the builds forum and asked for a good battlemage build? Or if how to improve their saboteur? Almost certainly there would be more than one person telling them to start a new character. I recall not too long ago someone asking for advice on their Templar for farming the vanquisher set and being convinced to start a new character. Actually, I recently built a Templar from the ground up, farmed the set with it and got to SR 75. So there’s definitely a narrative in the builds forum about what’s worth doing and what’s not that is heavily influenced by the regular’s preferences and desire to min-max. And that narrative is probably not beneficial involving players not interested in the same kind of min-maxing.
Even if someone does want to share a “casual” build, if they post it, they’ll certainly be told, politely or not, that it’s not optimized and they should change it. To an extent, that’s fine, so new players aren’t mislead into copying a weak build. But if the build actually does decently well in end-game content, but the poster is told repeatedly that the build is weak because it’s a couple minutes slower, is it likely they’ll post again? And certainly not everyone who posts a build wants to preface it with a justification for why they should be able to post it even if it sucks.
To sum it up, the forum isn’t usually very toxic, but it doesn’t need to be actively rude to create a discourse that ultimately drives players away from the game.
I’m reasonably certain crate has already made their stance clear on the likes of Anasteria Helm and Alk Rings. They’re balanced generously to the high end of legendaries. While they are somewhat tedious to get they are not beyond the point where rarity exempts them from being considered for nerfs.
I can say some classes obviously are better than others, but if you like Sabo or BM there are options to played. Definitely is bigger challenge making weaker class work but I know that’s your specialty.
If someone is saying what to do with Vanquisher Templar, I would not say to reroll but will point out my CT Templar, which have great performance in Crucible. So every class combo have unique charm. But I wouldn’t recommend BM for a first class though. I am not that sadistic!