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DiabloApr 13, 2022 10:00 am CT

Diablo 3 patch 2.7.3, live now, changed Greater Rifts to (hopefully) be faster and more fun

A series of changes came to Greater Rifts in Diablo 3 patch 2.7.3 just ahead of the start of Season 26 that should make getting to the Rift Guardian a little faster, without the tedium of chasing monsters down the endless corridors of maps like the Hidden Aqueducts. If you’re not familiar with Greater Rifts, they’re an endgame activity in the game that distills D3 to its essence — kill as many monsters as possible until a really big, hard to kill monster shows up, then kill that too and gain fabulous loot from your victory. They’re one of the most fun — and at higher difficulty levels, most challenging — aspects of the game, as you attempt to slaughter waves of monsters fast enough to spawn the final boss with enough time left on the Rift’s countdown to kill said boss before time runs out.

So what’s changed in patch 2.7.3? First, if you’re worried, let me reassure you that the changes won’t make Greater Rifts feel substantially different to play. These are quality of life changes and tweaks to difficulty and reward, plus a special curated map that will make the Rift feel slightly different in terms of how it plays out. We’ll cover the changes below.

Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment (Official Post)

Orek’s Dream: Greater Rifts have a small chance to roll as Orek’s Dream. These dreamlike rifts have a curated list of maps and monster compositions.

  • 3 maps have been added and 2 maps have been removed from the Greater Rift pool.
    • Added: Fields of Misery, Desolate Sands and Briarthorn Cemetery
    • Removed: Sewers of Caldeum, and Hidden Aqueducts
  • The probability of Greater Rift maps has been adjusted.
  • The probability of monster groups has been adjusted.

The Orek’s Dream Rift is an intriguing change — basically, any time you open a Nephalem Rift, it has a chance of being Orek’s Dream instead. The Dream promises a better chance for a good run by using more curated maps less tailored for RNG, but the loot is no better than the regular Rift you were trying to open in the first place. It’ll probably be an interesting little thing to encounter in the middle of a grind, but not a huge change overall. Though it may be easier to get a good run, its rarity means it’s not something to actively seek if you’re shooting for the leaderboard.

The addition of three new maps to Greater Rifts is intriguing, and frankly, I am beyond thrilled to see the end of the Hidden Aqueducts and Sewers of Caldeum maps in Greater Rifts. They’re boring, difficult to navigate, and very easy to end up having to backtrack and cost you time when doing the Rift — plus monsters often spawn in out of the way passages that force you to scour the entire map looking for that last mob you need to spawn the Rift Guardian, and that’s just not fun nor is it conducive to effective speed running. As for the adjustment of the probability of Greater Rift maps and monsters? Hopefully this leads to more fun with more monsters for you to smash without the hassle of searching for them.

There’s also a list of monsters that will give more XP and progression — adding to the Rift Guardian bar, meaning that it will spawn sooner — when killed. This is all good stuff, as it means you’ll be able to get to the Guardian faster and turn its face into pudding so you can get your fountain of loot and go on to the next Rift. I applaud this entire section, it’s nothing but good.

As for the last change, speaking to Orek to close a Greater Rift is just an ease of use change. It means you can get to the next Rift faster, that’s all. It’s nice, but not groundbreaking. Overall, these are certainly good changes but if you’re running Rifts now you might not have even noticed them.

Originally posted March 8, 2022. Updated April 13, 2022.

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