After the Season 24 Ethereals, Season 25 Soul Shards & Season 27 Sanctified Powers, Diablo III goes back to new content and mechanics similar to Echoing Nightmares from Season 26 with the exclusive Altar of Rites mechanic!
Season 28 introduces a new Seasonal Theme called Rites of Sanctuary, where players can discover a Skill Tree that contains 26 icons called Seals and 3 Legendary Potion Powers to unlock and acquire amazing buffs and exclusive powers.
Unlocking Seals requires the player to sacrifice specific materials. To unlock a Seal, the Seal preceding it must first be unlocked. At the end of the journey, one can unlock the entirety of the Altar of Rites.
Altar of Rites Overview
For Season 28, Rites of Sanctuary, we’re travelling deep into the mysterious ruins of the Festering Woods. Amid a hunting expedition, citizens hailing from New Tristram stumbled across an ominous Altar carved from an archaic material bearing cryptic markings. Shaken to their core by the eldritch aroma of the monolith, they’ve enlisted the assistance of brave Nephalem willing to investigate this sinister discovery that was once left to time—the Altar of Rites.
Home to power thought to be extinct from Sanctuary, the Altar of Rites will bestow these mystic forces upon worthy Nephalem... After a sacrifice is offered.
Season 28 Rites of Sanctuary introduces the Altar of Rites that players can discover in New Tristram. It is a Skill Tree that contains 26 icons called Seals and 3 Legendary Potion Powers to unlock and acquire amazing buffs and exclusive powers.
After unlocking the first Seal, the order in which you unlock additional Seals and obtain their powers is entirely up to you and which powers align with your character’s build the most. Once a Seal or Legendary Potion Power is unlocked, you’ll immediately receive that Seal or Potion’s power and will have the ability to unlock connected Seals or Potions once you have the required materials.
All Seals and Potions can be unlocked by players and the powers apply to all your characters — these powers last for the entirety of Season 28. To know exactly how to unlock them, go check out the Seal Unlocking Guide by Raxxanterax!
All in all, with both massive defensive and offensive buffs, this seasonal theme will largely benefit everyone! However, as usual, some builds can stretch things to the limits to get the edge over most builds. Check out our Season 28 Tier Lists to discover which builds will lead the season!
Altar of Rites Seals
Grants +200 Average Damage. This is similar to a Jewelry Damage Range Affix and is added to your Weapon Damage, which translates into ~5-6% damage on average.
Command & Prowess
Appears with the Elite Damage stat you can find on your character sheet.
Grants 10% Elemental Damage of your highest current element. You need to have at least some Elemental Damage to make it work.
Grants a 20% separate damage multiplier.
Grants a 30% separate damage multiplier.
Grants a 25% separate damage multiplier against Bosses.
Shadow & Numb
Appears in your character sheet with the Missile & Melee Damage Reduction you can find as Secondary Affix on Jewelry and Bracers.
Appears in your character sheet with the Elite Damage Reduction you can find as Primary Affix on Chest or Off-Hand.
Gain a shield for 5% of your Maximum Health every time you pick up a Health Globe. The buff duration is 10 seconds. All stacks are refreshed when you pick up a Health Globe. This greatly helps most builds to protect Squirt's Necklace damage multiplier. Just like Wizard shields, they scale with your Maximum Life, the maximum life you have, the larger the shield is.
Grants 15% additional Dodge Chance, stacking the normal way with Dodge Chance in your character sheet.
This seal doubles the duration and bonus of Kill Streaks.
This seal grants you a permanent Pool of Reflection. The way it works is that you have a pool that is automatically refreshed when it is about to expire or when you revive after a death. This essentially means you have to pick up one Pool of Reflection on every character for the whole season and forget about it. This Pool of Reflection works exactly like any other Pool, which means it double dips for Greater Rift Closing Experience, for a total average of +40% Experience!
Removes all Item Level Requirement, great for leveling new characters!
Grants 25% Movement Speed Bonus which goes beyond the base 25% cap from your Gear and Paragon Points.
Automatically picks up Progress Globes within 60 yards in Nephalem & Greater Rifts. This is a pickup effect which procs around twice per second and is approximately screenwide. This means it is possible to leave the screen without picking up globes if you have too much Movement Speed and run away.
Completing Bounty Acts grants 2 Bounty Caches instead of one, which means you get twice the amount of Bounty Legendaries but also twice the number of Bounty Materials.
Critical Hits grants Resource (15 Mana, 5 Hatred, 5 Wrath, 3 Arcane Power, 3 Fury, 5 Spirit & 5 Essence). While most builds have a way to self sustain their massive use of resource, this seal is great for all builds that consumes alot of resource. The amount of resource you get back is lowered by the proc coefficient of the attack that procs it. Do not forget this Seal requires you to build some Critical Hit Chance to be used efficiently.
Double the amount of Death's Breaths that drops. This is a "separate multiplier" and stacks with Sage's Journey.
Grants Passability which is the Illusory Boots effect.
Elite Packs drop one additional Progress Globe. This Seal is incredibly powerful since it helps to create single floor Greater Rifts. It also allows you to farm Nephalem Rifts faster.
Grants immunity against all Crowd Control effects. This works against all Crowd Controls including some abilities that are usually not avoidable like Diablo stuns.
Pets pick up Death's Breaths.
Pets pick up and automatically salvage Common, Magic and Rare items.
Double the chance to get a Legendary from Kadala.
After unlocking all Seals & Legendary Potion Upgrades, you automatically unlock Warning which drops an additional random Primal Ancient when you drop one. This works for drops but also for Kadala. It does not work for crafting however. The bonus Primal Ancient is not affected by smart drop rules and can even be a Potion or a Gift.
Altar of Rites Legendary Potion Powers
When you reach the lowest point of the tree, you can start to pick up the incredibly powerful Legendary Potion Effects at the cost of Primordial Ashes, obtained by salvaging Primal Ancients.
This effect is the Season 18 Triune Circle theme in a potion. It spawns randomly one circle that has the size, duration and look of an Oculus Ring with a special color and effect:
- Pink Circle grants a 100% separate damage multiplier while you're inside. This effect can stack with an Oculus Ring if you're fortunate enough to have them overlap in the same area.
- Blue Circle means all your cooldowns are reduced by 1 additional second every second while you're inside.
- Green Circle means you gain 50% Resource Cost Reduction while you're inside.
This effect makes your character apply a 10 second duration debuff on monsters that reduces their damage dealt by 25%. This effect has a 25 yards radius on potion use. You can notice monsters affected by the debuff thanks to the little blue cue over monsters' heads.
On Potion use, you gain a random Shrine Effect or a 16 second duration Power Pylon (250% separate damage multiplier just like any Power Pylon). The Flavor of Time does not increase the duration of the Power Pylon buff, however Gloves of Worship do work in order to get 10 minute duration Shrine effects! Here are the Shrine effects you can benefit from:
- Enlightened: +25% Experience from monster kills.
- Frenzied: +25% Attack Speed.
- Blessed: 25% damage reduction.
- Empowered: +100% resource generation and 50% Cooldown Reduction.
- Fleeting: +25% Movement Speed and +20 Pickup Radius.
Pylons like Frenzied Shrine can be extremely good for builds that makes heavy use of Attack Speed like LoD Carnevil or Arachyr Spiders. But most importantly, the bonuses from Empowered Shrine allows almost every build to remove a massive amount of Cooldown Reduction on their gear like LoD "Bazooka".
While Season 27 brought a new depth in itemization with Sanctified Items like Ethereals and Soul Shards did in Season 24 & 25, Season 28 goes back to shaking things up with new content like Season 26 Echoing Nightmares did! The Altar of Rites offer a huge power creep and a lot of quality of life changes and bonuses like never seen before. And you, what will be your goals in Season 28 ?
Thanks to the Maxroll Team for extensive PTR testing!
Written by Chewingnom.
- 18 February 2023
Created Full Article for Season 28 / Patch 2.7.5.