Retaliation damage penalty on Chains of Anguish is not necessary

I’ve mentioned this many times before, but Zantai seemed not to believe my theoretical analysis and wanted me to give evidence. Well, this time I’ll put out some.

First, let me quote the theoretical analysis first.

Then I’m gonna give my evidence.

I haven’t found anyone else using Chains of Anguish in a retal build, so I did some tests and made video records, based on the two builds I posted in the theoretical analysis above. Here are the result:

  1. Physical Retal RF Warlord 7-in-row SR75-76 (Chains of Anguish, v1.2.0.5)
    Warlord, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator
    5:50, 4:18, 6:30, 5:11, 5:13, 5:56, 5:47
    trimmed mean time is 5:34

  2. Physical Retal RF Warlord 7-in-row SR75-76 (Ugdenbog Girdle, v1.2.0.5)
    Warlord, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator
    4:58, 5:46, 5:10, 5:14, 6:16, 5:32, 5:13
    trimmed mean time is 5:23

Why are they 7-in-row? Because after removing a minimum value and a maximum value there will still be 5 values, making the results more reliable.

These tests can prove at least 2 things:

  1. Chains of Anguish does NOT grant retal builds with extra damage benefit. I’ve explain the reason in the theoretical analysis but I’m gonna express that again. Chains of Anguish does not have any % retal damage and it’s in fact a negative % res gear. A retal build will have to switch Bladed Plating for Spellscorched Plating, or switch legendary items with higher % retal damage and good granted procs for MIs with lower % retal damage and no granted procs, to make up for the % res gap. This result in a direct retal damage loss, which further results in no extra damage benefit at all.

  2. Whether the builds use Chains of Anguish or not, they are not something that needs damage nerf. All gears I used in the tests are of above-average rolls. I’ve shown that in the beginning and at the end of each video. Despite its tankiness and high mobility, it’s just another 5:30ish SR farmer with very very moderate damage (or let’s say in fact very low). If you check the videos carefully, you’ll know how experienced I’m at farming SR (find Nemesis in shards quickly, etc), which means without being as adept as I am, the builds will be 6:00ish or even slower. In SR the advantage of 3 mobility skills is amplified, and in CR these two builds will rank a even lower place.

These two things are enough as reasons why retaliation damage penalty on Chains of Anguish is not necessary, so I asked you to remove it please.


More test is coming!

  1. Acid RtA Aegis Sentinel 5-in-row SR75-76 (, Murmur’s Kiss)
    Sentinel, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator
    Time of each run: 4:53, 5:12, 5:27, 6:23, 4:28
    Average: 5:17

  2. Acid RtA Aegis Sentinel 5-in-row SR75-76 (, Chains of Anguish)
    Sentinel, Level 100 (GD - Grim Dawn Build Calculator
    Time of each run: 6:11, 5:18, 5:31, 5:32, 5:58
    Average: 5:42

Damage is pretty much the same.

AGAIN, Chains of Anguish DOES NOT grant retal builds with extra damage benefit even if there is no correct -25% total retal damage modifier.
This is another proof of retaliation damage penalty on Chains of Anguish being not necessary at all.
Another reasonable solution is making Chains of Anguish grant retal builds with extra damage benefit when the debuff is not triggered. For example, add 2250% * 25% * 6/25 = 135% all retal damage.
Otherwise, the retal damage penalty is just another manifestation of double standard and discrimination upon retal damage.


It’s quite weird that physical damage can get ADCtH buff without anything lost, while retaliation is still discriminated and bleeding innocent blood.

Also it’s interesting that another guy said there should be some ADCtH on Dire Bear and here it comes, while I’ve given two examples that retal penalty on Chains of Anguish is not necessary but nothing happened.


You are not wronged by those poor ratings indeed.

If it doesn’t grant ret an extra damage then why bother to use the belt?

That’s the question you’re not answering and that’s the reason no changes to the belt are occurring when it comes to ret.

Ask yourself why you are using it for ret?

For the +all skills? If so, how many items have +all skills?

The truth is, situationally that belt was busted.

In regards to ADCTH. I don’t agree with the addition to phys devo routes. I say that because there are viable alternatives to assist in sustain. The issue is people’s build definitions and standards. But I would be the vocal minority due to personal build standards.

TL:DR belt should stay as is IMO.

Very nice question. Let me ask you some similar ones:

If Cadence is not good, why bother to play Cadence?
If Voldrak’s Crusher doesn’t work fine, why bother to use Voldrak’s Crusher?
If Warborn Death Knight/ Blitz Warlord/ Avenger Archon/ Ranged Warlord is nerfed to mid level, why not just abandon them?
Then, if XXX is not the best build, why bother to play it?

There will be no exact answer for these questions. Sometimes it’s just because people like it. Or let me make it sounds more rhetoric - to enrich builds diversity.

Also plz remember, people don’t like nerfs, especially baseless and unreasonable ones. It’s happening on retal and I care about it. That’s it.

If you must ask for an answer, how about relatively “cheaper” gear setups?

This statement is a wrong or biased “truth”. The belt does grant physical builds extra benefit, but doen’t grant retal builds. Retal penalty is baseless, and maybe it’s just some imaginative fantasy of developers.

I beg you pardon? There is no your disagreement there in the related topic. This makes me believe you’re opposing in order to oppose here.

No we are not talking skills. There are many alternate belts. Pick one.

Again, no. It was busted situationally, such as phys dot builds that were clearing SR in stupid times.

Again, no. That belt was used in a lot of situations where the proc could be ignored as you could place dots and be out of harms way.

There are a lot of other belts. This goes for ret too. Besides you answered my question with another question that was totally unrelated. So I’ll ask again.

WHY do you want to use that belt, and only that belt for ret? What’s wrong with other belts?

I wish you would stop playing devil’s advocate here.

Isn’t Voldrak’s Crusher an item? There are many other weapons, pick one.

Does phys dot builds has anything to do with retal builds?

Again, does these “situations where the proc could be ignored as you could place dots and be out of harms way” has anything to do with retal builds?

I’ve given you my answer by “cheaper”. Guess you should go for an ophthalmologist.

We resorting to insults now then, sounds good. You ain’t answered nothing really. You’ve dodged the question completely.

Here is the truth and I hope that Zantai nerfs that crap outta that belt.

That belt is designed to have a huge downside for the stats. In other words your build should suffer from it when the proc is up. Not avoid it in any sense. Every and any build.

This is a you problem and your groups problem. Grow up and find alternatives.

I’ve answer your question twice. Cheaper.

But on the other hand when the proc is off, the user should have extra damage bonus. Physical builds and others have already got theirs. So where is the extra retal damage bonus?

I’ve already given another solution - adding 135% all retal damage as its basis stats. You just ignored it and are opposing in order to oppose.

Lol 135% more ret damage???


What’s the ret damage before the 135%?

2600? So you want 5% more damage on top of blanket +skills and everything else?

I think you just proved why it needs to stay the way it is.


Your words and this 2600% proved that you never watched any of the video I posted nor read the calculation, and never really think about the topic carefully.

Let’s make it straight.

  1. Penalty for good stats. I agree. That’s quite fair.

Regular damage builds (of which many of them are already stronger than retal builds) got extra damage bonus and +skills and everything else, so they have ele res penalty, phys res penalty and damage penalty on the proc. What I proved is that retal builds didn’t get extra damage bonus (in v1.2.0.5, when there is no retal damage penalty), so there should not be a damage penalty on the proc or there should be some extra damage bonus added when the proc is off. ele res penalty and phys res penalty are always there for retal builds, as a tradeoff for the +skills and everything but damage bonus.

The number 135% was made with a fair equation. For regular damage builds is 3000% damage x 25% penalty x 6s/25s =180%, that’s exactly what the belt grants. So for retal it should be 2250% x 25% penalty x 6s/25s = 135%. This is fair between regular damage and retal damage.

Otherwise it’s a net nerf. Why should retal builds get nerfed when there are tens and hundreds of other stronger builds who don’t?

  1. The question “why bother to use that” itself doesn’t make sense.

This is not an excuse for baseless nerfs. The same logic can be applied everwhere. The same logic can be applied on Voldrak’s Crusher and so many other things. “Why bother to use Voldrak’s Crusher on a physical cadence witchblade? Go use Gutsmasher! ” The same logic, isn’t it? When it comes to balance changes rather than build construction, the question “why bother to use that” only results in narrowed gameplay ways. So if you think every builds/skills/class combination should have only one solution, then you can insist your “why bother to use that”.

  1. Again, all my tests are done in v1.2.0.5, when there is no “retal damage modified by -25%” modifier but a “-25% all retal damage”, which is almost negligible. This means even if there is no retal damage penalty, these retal builds are just very mediocre and does not need a nerf. Chains of Anguish there is just an craftable cheaper usable belt, not an OP thing that needs busted on retal builds.

Yes please. Stay the way it is in live patch v1.2.0.5, -25% all retal damage, not total retal damage modified by -25%.

What are the viable alternatives to sustain, please?

The belt was regularly overperforming and became a crutch for too many builders. That is the literal opposite of build diversity. If the belt is critical (doubtful) for builds to function, then whatever it provides needs to be provided through other means. It was never even meant to be a tool for retaliation builds.


Not for retal builds through. It is indeed a crutch for too many builders, but mainly for physical and probably cold builds and hardly any retal builds.

Back when there was no retal damage penalty, it was an selectable option , but not an optimized one in all cases. When people needs more retal damage, some legendary belt is better, and when people want some more ADCtH, Chains of Anguish could be on the to-use list. Last time you asked me for “Based on” and I’ve shown you. Adding retaliation damage penalty is justing killing its possibility in retal builds. This is the literal opposite of build diversity.

I’m glad that you and I both think better build diversity is a good thing, and I agree with you partly. I also appologize for those angry scream if you feel offended or insulted. But I would like you to think it over carefully. To regular damage builds, yes, Chains of Anguish is opposite of build diversity (and thus its total damage penalty duration is increased), but to retal builds it’s not. So why should we kill the possibility when the belt is not narrowing retal build diversity but probably widening it?

Boom, as I said.

Not to sustain, to ADCTH. There are lots, health per second, piloting, etc.

The issue with this thread or anything else (mostly) is a unwillingness to compromise in personal build philosophy. I hardly use ADCTH. If I do, most builds have sub 10%, more like 6-9% on average. I find alternatives.

For example people scoff at the Builder devotion. I have a jank warlock that has all elemental converted to aether for CT with agrivix and am using blind seer and builder. I constantly have over 3300 armor (unsure as to phys res) with only 6% leech from the helmet with HPS selections in some item slots plus scythe and chariot/behemoth and do sr 80 HC just fine. In other words I compromised to make stuff work.

That is something the OP is simply unable or unwilling to do even when told that the belt was over performing and resorted to insults. For all the chest puffing that occurs, they seem to really not understand why the belt took a hit.

“Builders” = tiny fraction of the entire GD playerbase.
“Retal builds” = small fraction of all “builders” builds.

So what, we are balancing the game around 0,01% of builds now? Like who cares if build X performs better than it should be? And wasn’t SR60 or something a high bar for build ratings anyway? And now it’s, what, SR80+?

Just raise crappy builds to the level of normal/good ones - you still gonna ramp up the challenge in Ascendant mode.

(I don’t care too much for retal though; this belt oftentimes isn’t worth the hussle of dealing with sudden drops in survivability and DPS. I personally was considering it once or twice, but obviously I discarded this idea since some +1 skills MI belt is better overall)

1 Like

I fully agree on giving a hit to the belt because it was really OP to regular damage builds, mostly physical and cold ones. I fully agree on the duration increase, and if you think that’s still not enough, then increase its damage penalty.

But, it was NOT OP to retal builds. Why bother to give a hit to something mediocre?

What update has not done that?

This sums up why alternatives should be used.

I think the floor has been raised a lot because even my crappy jank builds that are thematically based (such as my before mentioned aether wisps warlock) can clear things really well. So in other words, everything was improved.

If I haven’t make my statement clear, I’d like to explain that again.

First, IMO we’ve achieved an agreement that:

  1. if something is OP, it deserves a nerf. if something is not OP, then a nerf is not necessary.
  2. better build diversity is a good thing. Our discussion should have a goal to enrich build diversity.

Then let’s go back to Chains of Anguish. Since my original statement is that the retal damage penalty is unnecessary, and the belt itself give decent % all damage but no % retal damage, discussion should be made based on different situations.

  1. To regular damage builds, especially physical and cold ones. Chains of Anguish seems to be always an optimized choice, so it is the opposite of build diversity. Then it should be nerfed. Increasing proc duration has already been there. Along with the global phys res changes, the phys res penalty has also become more deadly. These nerfs are meant for a better build diversity.

  2. To retal builds. This is what I cared about and what I did my tests on. I’ve proven that to retal builds it’s not OP and it’s not always an optimized choice. It works ok when you need ADCtH at a lower cost (in fact there is only 2% extra ADCtH because to control variable I used Dread Lord prefix) , but with lower damage and a sudden drop in survivability already. Keeping the -25% total retal damage modifier will just make it totally disappear from the belt-to-use list of retal builds, which with no doubt narrows build diversity.


If you just want to say no Chains of Anguish on retal builds, then here comes a bigger problem. Retal builds, particularly physical retal builds who share most of their devotions with physical builds (however, physical retal builds don’t use Dire Bear so they missed its ADCtH buffs), also lacks speed and ADCtH, due to devotion route and poor speed granted by gears. If the retal damage penalty has to be there, I would suggest to replace the 5% move speed on Autumn Boar with 6% total speed, and add 6% ADCtH to Autumn Boar. Its % physique or % phys res can be removed for compensation.

The same reasons as once physical builds put there.