Path of Exile

The Glancing Blows nerf makes sense

Content of the article: "The Glancing Blows nerf makes sense"

I've seen a lot of complaints about the nerf and I wanted to provide a different perspective.

Glancing Blow's primary purpose is to provide an easy way to boost effects that scale with block%. This includes counter-attacks, Tempest Shield, passives that give bonuses based on your block% (like the block% equals damage passive between Duelist & Ranger), and on-block effects like healing & gaining charges. A secondary effect was that it reduced the chance of one-shots in specific instances (when you get hit by only a single hit that does more than your eHP but not double that amount and it's slow enough that you won't get hit again in succession). It didn't actually increase your defenses in the long run and in fact if your base block% was over half the maximum, it decreased your overall defense.

The problem is that players are so afraid of one-shots and since there was no real penalty to taking Glancing Blows if you don't invest in block, tons of people were taking it just for that secondary effect. It was becoming a no-brainer pick for anyone in that part of the passive tree instead of an option that allowed for more builds to scale block% bonuses & effects.

The nerf to Glancing Blow now allows it to function properly by giving it a proper opportunity cost. Now you have to decide if getting a high block% with minimal investment is worth lowering your defenses or if you're better off increasing your block chance through more normal methods. And the secondary effect is now even more situational (anything that does over 50% overkill will still kill you now and you're now more vulnerable to death from multiple hits).

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Nerfing Glancing Blows by having it reduce on block effects instead would be counterproductive – it would hurt builds that were actually designed for Glancing Blows, while not doing anything to deter generic builds from taking it.

If life gain on block effects are too powerful, those should be directly nerfed in general, not Glancing Blows. And we've seen them do that already with one instance with the Necromancer nerf (which BTW, should rarely have been taking Glancing Blows since they were already close to the cap).


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