Recently there has been a lot of speculation about GGG nerfing unique flasks in 3.0. Well now unique flask nerfs are pretty much confirmed. Recent data-mining has shown that almost all of the unique flasks, particularly ones popular in the meta, are receiving large balance changes. We will be discussing the balance changes in depth below and I will be giving my thoughts on what they may entail for the builds that use them. Lastly, I would like to note that all of these changes besides Vinktars perhaps, will be going legacy because GGG never does global nerfs on % ranges. Last of all, don’t take everything here as 100% true. These are my speculations and they are probably correct, but do not invest in legacy items completely based on what I am saying. I am not responsible for any losses you may have.
The Atziri’s Promise nerf looks small but its quite insane for physical damage builds. This flask’s effect has been reduced by around ~22% for physical damage builds and it will stay about the same for elemental builds. One thing to note is that the elemental damage ranges have been increased. I don’t believe the legacy flask prices will change because there is an absolutely enormous amount of them on the market. There are tens if not hundreds of thousands of them that have dropped since 1.1 and the introduction of Atziri with the Sacrifice of the Vaal expansion.
This is another nerf thats quite large. The charges used have stayed the same but the area of effect has been changed. In the current (2.4) dying sun, there is a flat 30% increased area of effect. Now its down to a range of 15-25%. Assuming the median value, this is a 50% nerf on the Area of Effect that dying sun provides down from 30% to 20%. The markets have already started to show a difference in the price of well-rolled Dying Suns. I am not sure its worth buying them for a short term investment anymore, but maybe long term.
This is one of the lesser known flasks. Its current version only has 50% reduced duration but the downside of it is that it doesn’t remove freeze, chill, curses, or stuns. This version will. I am not sure if this is a buff or a nerf. The 10% reduced duration nerf will only be removing .3 seconds on the current version so it may actually be a buff designed to allow characters to remove ailments more easily. I would not suggest investing in this flask and expecting legacy prices to rise as the new version might be better.
The next flask on our list is Lion’s Roar! The current iteration has 30-35% more melee physical damage so the nerf is around 31% less damage provided by the flask by taking averages. This buff is actually huge because it is not the standard % increased damage, but it is % more damage. What this means is better explained in this post. However, this flask has a big downside that most people look past while calling it overpowered. It adds knockback. This is a terrible affix for melee builds as you have to be close to the enemy. However, a great combination effect can be achieved with the Empire’s Grasp unique gloves which reverse knockback to create a whirlwind effect. I would suggest buying a few of these flasks because they are underrated in the current meta and hopefully melee will be improved in the future.
This is another nerf on a meta flask. Although we already have a legacy variant with 30% extra cold damage, GGG is taking Taste of Hate nerfs even further. This variant has about 30% reduced damage provided by the flask compared to the current iteration. The physical to cold conversion is staying the same as well as everything else on the flask. Even though this flask is a meta flask because of the way in which it boosts physical damage, it might not be a good investment since people looking for legacy items will probably go for the original 30% conversion Taste of Hate.
This nerf is a very controversial one. Many people do not believe that this is even occurring but I believe that it is. What people are missing is that this Vinktar has a huge damage nerf and a huge defensive nerf. In general, shock increases damage taken by 50%. If you shock other monsters that’s a 50% more multiplier that stacks on top of everything else besides the Vulnerability aura. That means if you are doing 100,000 damage you will be doing 150,000 with this flask. Now they have changed shock just for this flask so it does 110,000 damage down from 150,000. That is obviously a pretty big damage nerf at 80%. All the other values stay the same except for one. Gain Life and Mana from Leech instantly during Flask Effect. They are bringing back the key line of the original Legacy Vinktar. This will make Vinktar the defensive powerhouse it was before because it provides something even Vaal Pact cannot: instant mana leech. This change moves in the trend that all of the other changes GGG is making. They are trying to nerf the clear speed meta and make defense more important. This flask visualizes that change perfectly as it trades damage from the current iteration for extra survivability from the instant leech. I do not believe that this flask is going to go legacy due to the fact that it is a flat modifier change. It is not a change to % ranges and I do not believe that it is going legacy.
Wise Oak is another one of the bigger nerfs. Down from 20% penetration, this flask is being nerfed by ~38% penetration. In its current state it is very overpowered if you can line up all 3 of your resistances so you gain both the defensive and offensive benefits. I believe the nerf was completely justified as it will still be popular after the nerf. The price of these flasks has already spiked by ~800% in Legacy League.
The final flask is one that is not quite as popular but still very powerful. The current witchfire brew provides 50-70% increased damage but it has 50% increased charges used halving the amount of times this flask can be used. This can be considered a nerf or a buff depending which way you look it because even though this flask provides ~46% less damage than before, it can be kept up longer for damage over time builds. I am not sure which way this nerf/buff will go so I would not buy into these flasks yet unless you have nothing else to do with your currency.
Overall I believe that the unique flask nerfs are good for the game as they weaken the clear speed meta and prioritize more defense. Comment below on what you think of the 3.0 changes!