Getting a bunch of loot all the time in Diablo 4, but you don’t know which one is the right for you? You are attracted to the higher Item Power/Level of the item you just found. Should you equip the higher item power item? Let’s find out whether Item Power even matters in Diablo 4.
Yes and No. For items like weapons, Item Power in Diablo 4 translates to the raw damage you deal. For armor pieces, Item Power means the resistance to various damage you’ll receive. There is more to it but you should always prioritize the stats or affixes of an item over item power.
Items that work best with your build should be equipped as compared to simply going for the higher item power loot.
Let’s take a detailed look at how Item Power works in Diablo 4 and what it means for different things in the game, such as weapons and armor.
Item Power in Diablo 4
Other than the rarity of the items and the many stats that it gives the player, you’ll see just below the name of the item its Item Power or Level. As you progress and level up in Diablo 4, you’ll receive higher item power items and that can be very enticing for a player to just equip the most powerful one. But should you?
On weapons, this item power gives you base damage. The higher the item’s power the more raw damage it will deal. All of your many stat multipliers will scale off this number essentially. So item power in terms of weapons is quite an important deal.
Whereas item power is not as important on some of your other gear like armor pieces as it is on your weapon. It will only impact your base damage resistances and nothing more.
For items like rings and amulets, it will determine how high your implicit roles are i.e. your elemental or other resistances. These aren’t that important.
However, there is a hidden mechanic to item power that you should be aware of. It is called Breakpoints and these have a real impact on your playstyle and build choices.
There are six tiers of item power in Diablo 4 that determine an item’s overall stats and the stat ranges it can roll. Here are the different item power breakpoints:
|1 – 149
|150 – 339
|340 – 459
|460 – 624
|625 – 724
|725 and up
These ranges or tiers determine the potent bump in stats you’ll receive in any given item. You can use the Blacksmith to upgrade your gear to the next tier, and only then will it roll actual worthy stats.
This is because its affixes and stats are being rerolled in line with the new higher stat ranges of that breakpoint. Before you reach the next tier of the item, the stats will stay within their pre-determined stat ranges.
The reason for telling this is that item level doesn’t matter as much as one expects. If your item is not in the tier above your current, you will never get better stats. And this brings us to the elephant in the room, so read the next section carefully.
You should not worry about the item level at all. They don’t matter in the grand scheme of things. The only thing that matters is your build. Your item and gear preference should always cater to your build.
The stats on the item should complement your build and playstyle. For example, if you are running a fast-moving zippy Rogue build, then your items should have stats like evasive movements. Higher item power items don’t guarantee the stats will be in your build’s favor.
Having the correct synergy is worth more than 100 item levels on accessories. Item level only increases the base 2 resistances, and how high the affix rolls can be. The stats are the only thing that matters. You’ll get a better item eventually when it has the right affixes you want.
Stick to the one that suits your style and upgrade it at the Blacksmith instead of drooling over the higher item-level loot. This can be said for better rarities as well.
Sometimes a very tempting Legendary item won’t have the right mix of stats as your current Rare level item has. The wrong stats can really mess up your synergy and that is worth way more than you can imagine.
Once you have the right item, then use the Breakpoint mechanic we explained earlier and upgrade it to make it more effective. And as soon as you find the better rarity or higher item power loot that goes well with your setup, that is when you should switch.
This advice is extremely valuable when you are playing at higher World Tiers and/or difficulties. Base stats won’t matter here when compared to the campaign, so figuring out your build is the most crucial thing you can do.
Item Power does have its significance in Diablo 4 but not at the level that one might put it. Your build should be your center of attention and any item that caters to that should be given priority regardless of its item power or rarity.
Keep on the lookout for better loot for your build, and in the meanwhile, upgrade and stick to the one that serves you well.