Using the gear I purchased recently for my barbarian, I decided to re-do a few talents and passives and bump up the Monster Power a little more. I believe I can get up to 200k and have around 500 all resistances. According to one chat, supposedly these stats would be reasonable enough to handle some of the higher Monster Powers. Monster Power 6 definitely was too easy and I shredded mobs up without any issues. Monster Power 7 started to be closer to feeling like a challenge but I decided to go full stream at 8.
So 8 was definitely doable but I’m guessing only for a few areas. I had quite a bit of issues generating rage and played around with passives to find a good spot. No matter what I found myself rage starved most of the time and ended up being frustrated the few times I died from lacking rage to continue using whirlwind. I’m guessing that part of the problem is that I employed a Skorn (two hander) rather than dual wielding. That led to slower attacks and caused my barbarian to not be able to generate enough fury when a group of mobs ganged up on him.
Right now, I’m a bit low on gold so I decided to hold off replacing the Skorn with a decent Echoing Fury and main weapon. Instead, I toned down the monster power back to 6 and use more defensive gear as well as the Bul-Kathos Mighty Weapons. With lower DPS but higher resistances, I find Monster Power 6 to be a good sweet spot. My main issue in general is just being able to generate rage consistently. I find that dual wielding Bul-Kathos along with my Immortal Kings set gear allows me to keep up enough rage to continue using whirlwind without much issue.
I’m also guessing that not having enough gear with Attack Speed might be hindering me. From what I’ve seen most people go with a certain setup that allows them to have high attack speed and critical hit, which are the elements that help proc tons of critical hits that allow for sufficient rage generation and maintaining Wrath of the Berserker. Unfortunately, my setup won’t allow Wrath of the Berserker to be kept up indefinitely so I have to use that ability judiciously.
One thing that I do like about the higher monster powers is seeing all the rare drops. Although I was able to find tons of rares on my Demon Hunter and Witch Doctor, those were primarily from elites and rare mobs. With the bonus item chance increase at each monster power, you’ll definitely be seeing more loot. The quality is still questionable and most of the money I make is from level reduced gear or just outright selling the rares.
Most of my runs are kept fairly short, just doing Act 1 Weeping Hollow and Fields of Misery runs with Festering Woods tossed in when I want to get Nephlam Stacks. I tend to veer towards getting 5 stacks of Nephlam Valor just for the bonuses. Usually, it doesn’t take that much more effort and the rewards sometimes are decent.Mainly, I started playing off and on again since I was growing sick of Throne of Thunder runs (or rather failures). It’s nice to have a small change and do something slightly different and give myself a break.