[Feedback] Rancor needs a nerf - but it needs to be done carefully

This is a WIP as some of the vets are still testing Rancor

Full disclosure: I will also try to be as objective in reporting the suggestions offered by those who’ve tested it, though this will obviously be biased towards my preference. Also, in the name of perfect transparency, I will include the the runs done by @mad_lee, and @nery at the end of this post, after I have laid out my rationale for how Rancor needs to be rebalanced.

Intended design for rancor

  • It’s clearly meant to support bleed PB, hence the massive damage modifier, the massive bleed damage on the weapon, and the +1s to CD.

Unintended consequence of rancor

  • Hands down the strongest PB build GD has ever seen.
  • That being said, for the first time in GD’s history, Rancor has also finally made it possible to craft a top-tier pierce spam-caster. And this is something I would personally love to maintain in the name of build diversity.

Suggested nerfs

  • From @x1x1x1x2: <— NOTE: x1 has yet to pilot the build (no offence intended mate <3)

^Note: Lee’s rationale for this is that pierce PB shouldn’t be allowed to perform at such a level because it’s a gimmicky build which revolves around 1 weapon. I personally disagree with this.

  • From @thejabrixone <— NOTE: Jabrixone has yet to pilot the build (no offence intended mate <3)
  • From @ya1 <— He’s still testing it, so I’ll refrain from quoting him just yet

…And finally, my suggestions:

Rancor undoubtedly deserves a nerf. But IMO, the ones put forth by lee, jabby, and nery are way. too. harsh.

I’ve tested the build more extensively than all the vets combined, and in my experience, pierce damage is the most vulnerable to mutator RNG.

  1. With the exception of pierce, all damage types have mutators which will reduce monster res to it by -8%
  2. Armored mutator increases monster res to pierce by 30%, which is DOUBLE the 15% value of other damage types.
  3. It is possible to lose up to -28% casting speed with mutators.


  1. The build is squishy as hell and is inconsistent in the hands of top pilots like @nery, and @mad_lee.
  2. As mentioned above, I’d love to have a top tier pierce spam-caster. And we are also talking about a spec which is using:
    a. RAVAGER’S HELM (an item the vast majority of players will never see outside of grimtools),
    b. a double rolled M.I,
    c. Slow res bonus on all craftable items.

Given the insane item dependency of this build, I think it’s reasonable for it to perform at the level of other top tier specs (i.e. 6:30 clears).

Thus my suggestion is to change the damage modifier provided by the weapon from 50% to 30%.

A 20% decrease in DPS should theoratically increase its current clear time by 20%, allowing it to perform in that 6:30 range.

That being said, I also wish to preserve the possibility of making a bleed PB nuker. So I would also suggest adding a flat bleeding damage modifier to PB on rancor to compensate for the reduction of the total damage modifier.

Alternatively, one could also simply add a modifier to rancor which will REDUCE the total number of projectiles on PB by 1.

Clear times - ranges from 5:12 - 6:30
As explained above, clear times with this spec varies HUGELY because of mutators. Another factor which adds to this discrepancy is the fact that pierce damage has no DoT, thereby denying the pilot the luxury of leaving stragglers behind to be killed off by said DoT.

In other words, there are PLENTY of factors outside the build which can very significantly reduce it’s performance.

Here are 2 runs done by @mad_lee and @nery respectively. These were done under near optimal conditions:

  • No slow enemies stuck in corners

  • No detrimental mutators

  • Only 1x kaisan spawn

  • In @mad_lee’s case (5:11): He also lucked out on getting theodin instead of korvaak, as well as having maiden + that dinosaur thing spawn in 165 (i.e. having zantarin and gargabol spawn in those corners would have very easily added 5s to his clear time).

  • In @nery’s case (5:17): He was using pharma (no offence intended). I’m not sure how this would’ve affected his clear time, but there you have it.

I personally have NEVER broken the 5:20 barrier, and tend to average a 5:35 clear.


The interaction between the +1s cooldown modifier on Rancor and the Transmuter was something I had my eye on for a while, but chose to wait and see how it shook out. It’s not exactly desirable that the penalty of that Item Modifier is neutralized by taking the Transmuter.

I think the Transmuter will need to be adjusted to maintain the penalty as intended, but we can consider compensating pierce builds with an additional modifier on Rancor.

Hey Zantai, as player who played the build have few ideas:

1.To make PB skill transmuter have flat CDR instead of percentage. That will be mean this build can’t function and Pierce Spamming PB will parish, but will be in line with the build original concept.
2. Make the item little weaker. Still possible to spam PB but not to be top tier build.

Still isn’t smooth sailing. Build have energy problems and die often. But damage is overpowered for sure!

With all due respect Z, there are no pierce offhands, no pierce based gloves which provide casting speed without detrimental conversions, no pierce rings which give casting speed, and no pierce weapons (outside of MI’s) which offer CS.

This build took months of theorycrafting on my end, and (I’m not trying to brag) is arguably my most creative spec.

I understand that spam-PB was never the intention behind rancor, and as always, I’ll respect your decision, but it would really be a blow to build diversity if PB’s transmutor +/- Rancor was rebalanced in a way which prevents PB spam.

That’s just my biased opinion because, as many of the active members here know, I’ve always had a huge predilection for casters. With the exception of rancor, pierce damage is the only damage type I’ve yet to successfully make a build out of.

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Removing the total damage mod and reducing the conversion would pretty much screw builds that want to use CD PB with this sword. Seems unfair for an unintentional build to mess with the build that was intentionally made for the item.

If people want no CD pierce PB to be a thing, the devs can just pull an Amarastan Crusher and have an one handed weapon or offhand do a no CD PB for pierce.

In the name of objectivity…:

Rancor’s base WD is garbage. What it lacks in flat damage it more than compensates for with bleed.

In other words, it is first and foremost meant to be a bleed-based weapon, not a pierce weapon. This is evident in the flurry of rancor specs @rhylthar have done up using bloodragers; and the fact that there have been no pierce builds which use rancor outside of spam PB (i.e. flat damage is simply too low, and you’ll lack any other significant means of dealing damage)

Thus, reduced conversion values would have no impact on bleed PB specs, it would only impact spam PB.

I’d be open to the offhand idea, but I’d love for it to be something truly special because armarastan crusher is average at best (partially due to the inherent shortcomings of acid damage).

The offhand would also need to be able to justify the many limitations holding back pierce spam-casters.

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It’s also a pierce weapon, so removing most of the damage will affect it. Doesn’t change the fact that people can use this for pure CD PB with hardly any bleed and gutting the conversion will greatly affect the damage of those builds. The 20% pierce RR to DS also contradicts your statement of not being a pierce weapon. Seems like the devs want people to use the sword for CD pierce PB.

Also, this “the build isn’t posted in a forum which is a fraction of the fanbase, therefore it doesn’t exist” should never, never be used as an argument to gut items out of conversion.

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I’m not disagreeing with you here mate. I’m totally against any reduction in conversion values. I’m just explaining the rationale behind lee’s suggestion.

Just because it provides pierce RR to the devouring swarm doesn’t mean it’s a pierce weapon? How are you going to get pierce damage as a trickster?

Your only means of %pierce in the NB class is dual mastery which you have no access to. And the exclusive a trickster would use is the bleed-based one which again further supports bleeding damage.

Meaning no disrespect norzan, but this argument here is akin to saying that since dark one’s proc grants 250% chaos damage, dark one’s set is also a chaos based set.

Fair point. I suppose I’m talking about efficiency here, not about how people may wish to play their specs, the latter of which I’ve always encouraged.

But I would also argue that these players who are using pierce PB nuke with rancor are an even smaller minority. <-- Complete assumption on my end. Just sheer speculation.

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Nightblade has pierce RR and with Devouring Swarm Trickster becomes a double RR class for the Rancor? Seems to me the devs are going out of their way to make it a pierce weapon along with being bleed. So yes, it makes it a pierce weapon.

That’s thematic for starters (Chthon set) and second, it’s not the same thing as adding a pierce RR mod to a weapon. That’s just a silly comparison that doesn’t make much sense.

Spanky you never included my suggestion to just let rancor shoot a single big ass sword instead of multiple knives.

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Right, I forgot about that partially because I thought you were joking. I’ll edit OP.

So I suppose this makes deathmarked set a pierce set as well then?

It was at first with cold and then became biased to cold. Still not the same thing as adding a specifc mod to a weapon. If they didn’t wanted to be a pierce weapon, then they shouldn’t have given it the pierce RR mod.

Also, Crate tends to make a lot of items have damage types that the set or standalone item clearly doesn’t support. Specially when the set converts one damage type to another.

Lmao it’ll be hilarious if you really add it.

And you wonder why people don’t take us seriously :sweat_smile:

Lmao it’s basically the same. Member how mods replaced procs in a ton of legendaries when AoM came? I member.

I don’t disagree that Rancor was designed as a pierce weapon tho. While it will obviously get doomed as pierce trickster, we know Crate and Zantai love to make wonky mods to support some really fringe concepts, just turned out to be too strong in another class. As for how to balance stuff? I’ll leave that to you guys. I haven’t tested anything and I suggest anyone who hasn’t tested it stay out of the way unless your name is Zantai.

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Just because it was, doesn’t mean that it is. And just because something can be done, doesn’t mean that that’s the best thing to do.

Again, I’m not talking about build possibilites (e.g. because then where do we draw the line? What if I wanted to use make a physical based krieg death knight? Or an aether vanquisher templar? Or a cold based TSS spec with trozan set?)

Plenty of sets support 2 damage types, but that doesn’t mean it is meant to perform at an equal level for both.

Sets always tend to lean towards one damage type more than the other.

And most sets which don’t do this become meme sets - voidsoul is one example.

@x1x1x1x2 - fuck you x1 :stuck_out_tongue:

Do you want it there, yes or no?

I never wondered :laughing:

It’s legacy damage, there would be no point in removing now it because it would be pointless. Doesn’t change the fact that it was meant as a pierce/cold hybrid at first and it was changed much later. So not really a good example of what you are trying to prove.

And no, they are not the same thing. The pierce in Rancor isn’t being eaten by another damage type like in a lot sets and standalone items, it’s actually the other way around. If they didn’t wanted to be a pierce weapon, why chaos and vit to pierce on PB, global vit to pierce and 20% pierce RR to DS? You are gonna tell me that this is not meant as a pierce weapon?

It’s a joke but there’s no harm, right? Zantai knows that it’d a joke cause he’s reading but if he really does it then he gets all of my praises. It won’t happen tho, too much animation changes:p

It’s certainly a creative use of itemization, but it’s also incredibly unintuitive for that same reason (ex. gotta stack Vitality/Chaos damage instead of Pierce to boost flat damage).

In regards to spam Pierce casters, I’m not sure every damage type necessarily needs every archetype of character to exist.

I’ll have to think about the Pierce setup for this weapon, but I would not try to keep it supported if it means the primary function of the item has to suffer for it.