Season 22 - Shades of the Nepthalem Review and Guide

by carlparry on January 10th, 2021 at 7:47 am

Season 22 - Shades of the Nephalem Review

Shades of the Nephalem

Blizzard launched Diablo III's Season 22 (Shades of the Nephalem) at the end of November. Here we review the features in this update, particularly the Haedrig's Gift updates, and give some tips on how to best utilize the additional features available in Season 22.

Season 22 Shades of the Nephalem

Season 22 Table of Contents

Shades of Nephalem Theme

Nephalem, can you sense it? Everywhere you look, the remnants of a forgotten past are in wait. Waiting for the chance to focus their strength one more time to help you defeat the demons from hell. Are you brave enough to accept the help of these souls? The Shades of the Nephalem await....

We think the biggest feature in Season 22 is that triggering a Shrine or Pylon will generate a shadow clone of your class. The clone's power will last for a minute or until it is killed and will scale with your character.

You can see an example of the spawning process in the animated GIF below.

Activating a shrine or pylon

Also, in Season 22, Kanai's Cube there's a 4th slot. You have the choice of any power for this additional slot, but it won't stack with powers from your other slots.

Kanai's cube in Season 22

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Seasonal Cosmetic Rewards

Since the start of Season 17, Blizzard started making rewards from previous Seasons available to players who might not have utilized them the first time they were introduced. In Season 22, some cosmetic rewards from Season 10 are available once again. This means you can earn Season 10 favorites such as Head and Shoulder slots (see the left hand side of the image below) of the exclusive Conqueror Set. Also, you can earn the Black Soulstone-themed portraits and the scholarly Loremaster pennant (right hand side in the image below) first seen in Season 10, and now available in Season 22.

Season 22 cosmetic rewards

Blizzard are also rewarding players with End of Journey Rewards, which were first introduced in Season 17 - the Season of Nightmares. . In this season, new End of Journey rewards are available, with two new cosmetic prizes for those who complete the Season journey from start to finish. If you complete the Season 22 Guardian Journey (let us know if you do) you will win the Book of Cain pet and the Lost Civilization Portrait Frame (see the image below).

The book of Cain pet & the Lost Civilisation Potrait frame

Season 22 Journey Rewards

If you've been working hard killing demons in the past and have reached the level of Conqueror in each previous season journey, you will have acquired a few additional stash tabs, which are helpful for storing bounty. In Shades of the Nephalem, you can earn and extra tab for each Season by completing the Conqueror level, but up to a maximum of five tabs:

  • Guardian of Sanctuary: Finish a level 70 Nephalem Rift on Torment XIII difficulty within 5 minutes.
  • Gem of My Life: Level three Legendary Gems to level 55.
  • All I Do is Win: Complete two Conquests in Season 22.
  • Life Goes On: Kill Maghda at level 70 in under 15 seconds on Torment XIII difficulty.
  • Money Ain't a Thang: Slay Greed on Torment XIII difficulty. Treasure Goblins outside of Nephalem Rifts will sometimes open portals to Greed's domain, The Vault.
  • Take U There: Reach Greater Rift Level 60 Solo. Greater Rift keystones can be obtained from any Nephalem Rift guardian.
  • Power Amplification: Use Kanai's Cube to augment an Ancient Legendary item with a level 50+ gem.
  • Cubic Reconfiguration: Use Kanai's Cube to reforge a Legendary item.

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Seasonal Conquests

As you probably know, Seasonal Conquests are additional goals you can complete as part of your Season Journey. To earn all the cosmetic rewards in Season 22, you'll need to complete at least three of the Conquests below. The challenges available in Season 22 include:

  • Sprinter and Speed Racer task you with completing Acts I through V at max level in under one hour.
  • Want to go fast while killing things? Boss Mode and Worlds Apart are right up your alley.
  • On A Good Day and I Can't Stop are making a return, if leveling your Legendary Gems is more your thing.
  • Finally, if you're keen to prove your mastery of various Class Sets, Years of War and Dynasty will be returning along with Masters of the Universe and Masters of Sets

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Haedrig's Gift

Finally, the Class Sets rewarded for completing certain chapters in the Season Journey courtesy of Haedrig's Gift have rotated once more. We've listed the available Sets below. For those new to Seasons, here's how it works:

Completing Chapters 2, 3, and 4 of the Season Journey will reward you with three of Haedrig's Gifts. These contain a few pieces from one of your Class Sets. Players can only unlock one Class Set in this manner per Season across Hardcore and Non-Hardcore, so choose wisely!

The set you receive depends on the class of the character you're playing when you open each Haedrig's Gift. To collect a full Class Set, you'll need to open all three on the same character. For the first time in Season 22, Haedrig's Gift will grant the all-new class sets introduced in the three previous Seasons:

Here are the sets granted by Haedrig's Gift:

  • Barbarian - Horde of the Ninety Savages (see the image below from left to right)
  • Crusader - Aegis of Valor
  • Demon Hunter - Gears of Dreadlands
  • Monk - Patterns of Justice
  • Witch Doctor - Mundunugu's Regalia
  • Wizard - Typhon's Veil
  • Necromancer - Masquerade of the Burning Carnival

Season 22 Sets granted by Haedrigs Gift


Patch Notes

Below you will find the patch notes for the upcoming update for Diablo III, Patch 2.6.10.


PATCH 2.6.10

Table of Contents:

Note: All changes apply to all versions of Diablo III, including PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and PC unless otherwise indicated.


Seasons

We love Blizzards accompanying text; "The shadows, they are moving, and they seem... animated. It is as though they have a will of their own. Whatever this trickery is, perhaps you can use it to your advantage. Let's see what the demons say when you fight side by side with your own shadow!"

Shadows of the Past: Activating a Shrine/Pylon will spawn in a shadow clone of your class. This clone will randomly have 1 out of 3 predetermined builds. This clone's power will scale with your character and will last for 1 minute or if your character dies. See below for the shadow clone variations that can spawn when activating.

Witch Doctor

Build Variation 1 Build Variation 2 Build Variation 3
Grasp of the Dead - Rain of Corpses Wall of Death - Fire Wall Haunt - Poisoned Spirit
Piranhas - Zombie Piranhas Firebomb - Flash Fire Spirit Barrage - The Spirit is Willing
Zombie Charger - Zombie Bears Acid Cloud - Acid Rain Wall of Death - Communing with Spirits
Corpse Spiders - Medusa Spiders Piranhas - Zombie Piranhas Piranhas - Zombie Piranhas
Locust Swarm - Diseased Swarm Zombie Charger - Explosive Beast Acid Cloud - Slow Burn
Acid Cloud - Kiss of Death Spirit Barrage - Well of Souls Grasp of the dead - Unbreakable Grasp

Wizard

Build Variation 1 Build Variation 2 Build Variation 3
Arcane Orb - Frozen Orb Meteor - Molten Impact Arcane Orb - Obliteration
Frost Nova - Frozen Mist Arcane Orb - Scorch Disintegrate - Volatility
Blizzard - Unrelenting Storm Explosive Blast - Short Fuse Wave of Force - Debilitating Force
Energy Twister - Raging Storm Blizzard - Apocalypse Slow Time - Exhaustion
Explosive Blast - Obliterate Wave of Force - Heat Wave Energy Twister - Raging Storm
Ray of Frost - Black Ice Disintegrate - Convergence Meteor - Star Pact

Barbarian

Build Variation 1 Build Variation 2 Build Variation 3
Seismic Slam - Rumble Battle Rage - Marauder's Rage Battle Rage - Ferocity
Threatening Shout - Falter Threatening Shout - Falter Threatening Shout - Falter
Avalanche - Volcano Wrath of The Berserker - Insanity Leap - Launch
Earthquake - Molten Fury Sprint - Run Like the Wind Wrath of The Berserker - Insanity
Wrath of The Berserker - Insanity Whirlwind - Dust Devils Bash - Pulverize
Ancient Spear - Boulder Toss Rend - Lacerate Hammer of The Ancients - Rolling Thunder

Monk

Build Variation 1 Build Variation 2 Build Variation 3
Lashing Tail Kick - Sweeping Armada Fists of Thunder - Static Charge Exploding Palm - Essence Burn
Seven-Sided Strike - Fulminating Onslaught Way of the Hundred Fists - Hands of Lightning Seven-Sided Strike - Sudden Assault
Inner Sanctuary - Intervene Crippling Wave - Concussion Lashing Tail Kick - Spinning Flame Kick
Epiphany - Soothing Mist Seven-Sided Strike - Incinerate Sweeping Wind - Fire Storm
Breath of Heaven - Circle of Scorn Wave of Light - Pillar of the Ancients Wave of Light - Explosive Light
Wave of Light - Empowered Wave Sweeping Wind - Cyclone Epiphany - Inner Fire

Necromancer

Build Variation 1 Build Variation 2 Build Variation 3
Land of the Dead - Plaguelands Land of the Dead - Plaguelands Land of the Dead - Plaguelands
Frailty - Early Grave Frailty - Early Grave Frailty - Early Grave
Army of the Dead - Dead Storm Army of the Dead - Blighted Grasp Corpse Lance - Blood Lance
Corpse Explosion - Final Embrace Corpse Lance - Ricochet Bone Spear - Shatter
Bone Spear - Blood Spear Bone Spear - Blighted Marrow Death Nova - Bone Nova
Death Nova - Blood Nova Death Nova - Blight

Demon Hunter

Build Variation 1 Build Variation 2 Build Variation 3
Marked for Death - Valley of Death Marked for Death - Valley of Death Marked for Death - Valley of Death
Caltrops - Jagged Spikes Rain Of Vengeance - Dark Cloud Rain Of Vengeance - Shade
Fan of Knives - Assassin's Knives Cluster Arrow - Shooting Stars Cluster Arrow - Maelstrom
Chakram - Twin Chakrams Multishot - Arsenal Impale - Overpenetration
Vengeance - Side Cannons Vengeance - Personal Mortar Chakram - Serpentine
Impale - Ricochet Elemental Arrow - Immolation arrow Elemental Arrow - Frost Arrow

Crusader

Build Variation 1 Build Variation 2 Build Variation 3
Akarat's Champion - Fire Starter Akarat's Champion - Hasteful Akarat's Champion - Rally
Falling Sword - Superheated Iron Skin - Flash Falling Sword - Rapid Descent
Sweep Attack - Blazing Sweep Blessed Shield - Shattering Throw Heaven's Fury - Split Fury
Consecration - Shattered Ground Consecration - Bathed in Light Fist of the Heavens - Retribution
Bombardment - Annihilate Blessed Hammer - Limitless Iron Skin - Explosive Skin
Condemn - Reciprocate Condemn - Unleashed Condemn - Shattering Explosion

Kanai's Cube: As mentioned, Kanai's Cube has a fourth slot this season. This fourth slot offers the choices of the first 3 slots but will not stack with any of them. Blizzard say that the idea is to provide players with creative flexibility to their character builds.

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Season 22 Items

General

  • Haedrig's Gifts now grants all class sets and these is a new rotation schedule. In this Season, depending on which class you choose, Haedrig's Gifts will reward you with Horde of the Ninety Savages, Aegis of Valor, Gears of Dreadlands, Patterns of Justice, Masquerade of the Burning Carnival, Mundunugu's Regalia, or Typhon's Veil.
  • Stone Gauntlets now drops for all classes.
  • Paragon Bonus Gold Find has been changed to Gold Pickup Radius at 0.1 per point.

Item Changes

  • New Item* Gelmindor's Marrow Guards: Bone Spear cast from Simulacrums deal 300-400% increased damage.
  • Ivory Tower: Rapid multiple blocks will now scale the damage for Fires of Heaven, up to a maximum of 2.5 times damage.
  • Mantle of Channeling: Removed the 1-second start up before the power takes effect.
  • The Twisted Sword: The Twisted Sword: Energy Twister damage is increased by 125-150% for each Energy Twister you have up to a maximum of 5. The Raging Storm rune is automatically applied to Energy Twister and allows the tornado to merge with 3 additional Energy Twisters.
  • Etched Sigil: While channeling Arcane Torrent, Disintegrate, or Ray of Frost, the damage of your Energy Twister is increased by 200-250%, and you also cast Energy Twister every second.
  • Fragment of Destiny: Your Signature Spells attack 50% faster and deal triple damage. You gain a Spectral buff whenever you land an attack with a Signature Spell. Hydras deal 25-30% 20-30% increased damage for each Spectral stack. Max 10 stacks.
  • Valthek's Rebuke: Energy Twister now travels in a straight path and deals 300-400% increased damage.
  • Winter Flurry: Enemies killed by Cold damage have a 25% chance to release a Frost Nova. Your Hydra deals 125-150% increased damage to enemies in a Blizzard.
  • Wizardspike: Performing an attack has a 25% chance to hurl a Frozen Orb. Arcane Orb deals 300-350% increased damage.
  • Delsere's Magnum Opus: 6-piece bonus increased from 8500% to 12500%.
  • The Typhon's Veil: 6-piece bonus increased from 1300% to 2000%.
  • Norvald's Fervor: Increased 2-piece bonus damage from 100% to 400%
  • Armor of Akkhan: Increased 6-piece bonus damage from 1500% to 2000%
  • Roland's Legacy: Increased 4-piece bonus damage from 13,000% to 17,500%
  • Seeker of the Light: Increased 6-piece Blessed Hammer bonus damage from 12,000% to 15,000%
  • Belt of the Trove: Every 4 seconds, call down Bombardment on a random nearby enemy. Bombardment deals 400-500% increased damage.
  • Mortal Drama: Double the number of Bombardment impacts. Bombardement deals 400-500% increased damage.
  • Thorns of The Invoker: 2-Piece bonus decreased from 350% to 90% and has a cap of 10 stacks. 6-piece bonus increased from 15,000% to 67,500% and increased attack speed bonus from 50% to 100%.
  • Manajuma's Way: Angry Chicken explosion damage is increased from 400% to 2000%. Manajuma's Way now includes a third legendary affix, which allows angry chicken to spawn a chicken that seeks enemies every second that deals 25% of the angry chicken's explosion damage.
  • New Item* Ursua's Trodden Effigy: New Witch Doctor Legendary Mojo. Zombie Charger deals 100-150% increased damage. The Zombie Bears rune now summons 8 bears that travel farther.
  • Spirit of Arachyr: Increased 6-piece bonus damage from 9000% to 17,500%.
  • Helltooth Harness: Increased 6-piece bonus damage from 9000% to 17,500%.
  • Scrimshaw: Reduces the Mana cost of Zombie Charger by 75% and increases its damage by 6-7 times.
  • Inna's Mantra: Increased 6-piece bonus damage from 750% to 950%.
  • Shenlong's Spirit: Damage bonus increased from 200% to 350%.
  • Uliana's Strategem Set: Now has 77% damage reduction for 7 seconds after applying Exploding Palm.
  • Gungdo Gear: Exploding Palm's on-death explosion applies Exploding Palm. Exploding Palm's damage is increased by 75-100%.
  • Blade of the Tribes: War Cry and Threatening Shout cause an Avalanche and Earthquake. Avalanche and Earthquake both deal 600-800% increased damage. Consolidated Blade of the Tribes Earthquake affix into the new legendary affix so that it's no longer two affixes that buff Earthquake.

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Bug Fixes and Misc Updates

  • A patch fix has been applied on 12/7 for PC/Mac players to address game stability issues.
  • Blizzard has fixed a bug where players would crash while in Act IV Campaign mode.
  • Updated game client to allow in-game entry of passwords longer than 16 characters.
  • Diablo3 is playable on both Xbox Series X|S and PlayStation 5.
  • Fixed an issue with PC Win32 (32-bit) and macOS clients crashing.
  • Fixed Wizardspike to more properly proc Frozen Orb.
  • Simulacrums casting Grim Scythe with Haunted Visions no longer gain double benefit from Trag'Ouls Corroded Fang.
  • Blessed Hammer will now destroy itself after hitting 63 targets.
  • Fixed legacy items stacking with the new items: Gundo Gear, Blade of the Tribes, Scrimshaw, Belt of the Trove, Mortal Drama, Winter Flurry, Wizardspike, Etched Sigil, and Fragment of Destiny.
  • Fixed Necromancer's pets doing extra damage to cursed enemies from a bug caused by the original fix for Haunted Visions + Trag'Ouls Corroded Fang.
  • Fixed an issue with Trag'oul's Corroded Fang not properly applying the correct bonuses to pets.
We think Season 22, Shades of the Nephalem is one of the best yet, but let us know what you think in the comments section below.

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