I kept on with my Season 5 Crusader, whom I posted about last week, moving through the story, saving Adventure Mode and rifts and what not for afterwards. I like the story, and the waypoints… the places where you can stop and pick up again later without having to redo anything… are fairly well spaced.
There are a couple of points where they feel a bit too close together. For example why, in Act V, are there waypoints present literally the moment you step outside the Survivor’s Enclave, which has its own waypoint, for a couple of the story threads?
But too close is better than too far. I rarely felt like I had to slog along forever between waypoints, even if I ventured up every side path I could find.
It was interesting to up the difficulty from Expert to Master as well. There was clearly a period of time after I made the change that things were much tougher. I died a couple of times soon after the change, but after a while the gear drops caught up with the difficulty and I could once again just pile into the middle of normal mobs and go to town. I had to be more careful with elite mobs and bosses, a bit of mobility goes a long way in those cases. Getting out of all those arcane beams is always a good idea.
The only boss I had any real trouble with was Urzael in Act V. I died twice, very quickly, once his health dropped by about a third and triggered his second stage of attacks. But, again, the solution was mobility to avoid his burst damage, then back in close to just tank and out heal the rest of his damage. I favor gear that heals me some with every hit so beating on things is my general solution to taking damage. The third run at Urzael was a success.
The change to Master also sped up my level progression and it began to look like a race to see whether I would hit level 70 or finish Act V first. I went into the final fight with Malthael at level 69 with a few bars of experience left to go. The question was, would the Malthael give me enough experience to get me there. Well, this is how it turned out:
The race ended in a dead heat. On slaying Malthael I hit level 70 and finished Act V in one simultaneous flash. A friend of mine happened to be in game as well and got treated to a splash of achievement notifications in his chat window. I could not have made these two events happen together on purpose if I had tried.
So the story is done and I now have a character at level cap. Here is what he looks like, having put on the new pieces he got after the battle. (His profile is here.)
Now I have to wrap up the last two of the first round of Season 5 goals, which involve bounties and a rift.
I should probably also look into what skills I ought to be running with. So far I have just picked what has looked fun and seems to work, but I am going to guess that, if I want to progress through the various Torment levels, I will have to be a little less ad hoc in my approach.
Of course, that assumes I will make it into the Torment levels. I must admit that the story drives me much more than the end-game of bounties and rifts. The reason this is my first level 70 character is because the last time I finished the story I got bored with the end game and wandered off to do something else, leaving my previous Crusader at level 67.
I suppose I will have to see what other rewards Season 5 has to offer.