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How Skill Runes Work in Diablo 3

Diablo 3 Skill Rune BuildThe system of Skill Runes was implemented to enhance the functionality of the characters within the game of Diablo 3. These Runes were previously not present in Diablo 2 and have made a comeback with Diablo 3. But here they play the role of spell enhancers and in a departure from their Diablo 2 counterparts, are used in combination with such spells to give rise to many spectacular effects that assist the players or their fighting style.

In Diablo 2, these Runes were used in socketed items from where other skills or tools could be un-socketed. This system of Skill Runes is very similar to the system of Glyphs that is found in another hugely popular MMORPG, World of Warcraft.

The Purpose of Skill Runes

The Skill Runes system was one of the areas that were put through extensive reworking by the Diablo 3 development team. This has resulted in a more unique and braver take on the game’s already well-established mechanics. In Diablo 2, these Runes were inserted into socketed items which unlocked some more socket-able items. However, with Diablo 3 these Skill Runes can be used to boost the abilities of the various characters.

Compared to the previous versions of these Runes, the current ones have a naming series that can be comprehended much more easily. So the effects of such Skill Runes when used is much more pronounced and easily discerned by the players. This helps in a more interactive gameplay as it is never a good idea to keep the players groping in the dark for too long.

Another very thoughtful addition to the Skill Runes system is the feature of combining different Runes. Players can forge numerous combinations of these Skill Runes and these conjunctions can lead to an infinite number of versions of all the different spells in the game, for which it’s best to use the official skill calculator. To include an example, a suitable combination might allow you to raise the number of projectiles that have been launched. Another example can include turning a spell for a defensive shield into one that allows you to mount an offensive with the help of a barricade.

There is simply no limit to the number of combinations a player can think of and implement in the game. And with a greater ability to customize the characters, the gameplay is made that much more exciting.

The Mechanics of Skill Runes

Blizzard has so far stayed away from talking about the exact mechanics that are involved with the Skill Runes system. It is also believed that the mechanics for none of the Runes has been finalized as yet and there might be many different skill rune builds and combinations before the actual game is released. However, a fair number of guesses can be made about the mechanics since the Runes system has been implemented in previous versions of the game.

There has been news recently that Runes can be exchanged within skills without, and this is the interesting part, destroying the older Rune in the socket. Such Runes drop regularly within the game although the top-level Runes are still very hard to come by. These top-level Runes are far more valuable and are said to make the effects of spells quite spectacular.

However, Runes cannot be used on Passive Talents. They are restricted exclusively to Spells. At BlizzCon, the game’s developers showcased this system on only one character, the Wizard. So one thing is for certain, spells belonging to the first two tiers possess only a single socket for any enhancement desired by the player.

Whether the combination of Skill Runes will lead to highly powerful Spells and associated effects is still unknown. However, many game developers and experts have noted that such effects break the game’s overall mechanics. It’ll be interesting to see the final version of the Skill Runes system come 15th May 2012, the day Diablo 3 will be released.

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