Diablo 4's strongest weapon isn't a weapon at all: It's a deadly potion capable of dealing billions of damage

Diablo 4 season 4 screenshots
(Image credit: Blizzard)

Technically, Diablo 4's latest season doesn't have a unique power like season 2's vampiric abilities or season 3's robot spider pet. Instead, there are a couple seasonal elixirs that speed up the leveling process so that you can get your hands on the new crafting systems. But players who are pushing into the highest levels of The Pit, a new extremely challenging dungeon type, have discovered that one of those seasonal elixirs might be the strongest seasonal "power" the game has ever had.

The Elixir of Holy Bolts sends spears of light out from the corpse of a recently slain enemy and those spears are dealing billions of damage due to what seems like a bug. The math under the hood is still unknown, but its damage appears to scale way higher than it should. Minions, for example, mirror the stats from the necromancer controlling them, but when they kill an enemy the bolts deal double the amount of damage you'd expect.

In The Pit, the Elixir of Holy Bolts is required for anyone pushing into tiers above 100, where monsters would otherwise take too long to kill to beat the 15 minute timer. The best Diablo 4 players have been orienting builds around the use of it and have managed to complete tier 141 so far. The only thing stopping them from going higher are the bosses who can kill you in one hit and don't always call in other monsters to trigger the elixir.

As you can imagine, Diablo 4 players have spent the last few weeks discussing whether the elixir is fair or not. Some players don't see it as any different from other seasonal powers, intentional or not, while others think it trivializes the season's focus on upgrading loot with crafting. 

"The season is the season of loot. Then they give us an elixir that skews everything and makes it nearly impossible to judge builds," Reddit user Spee_3 wrote.

Popular guides site Maxroll opted to ban the elixir for anyone submitting runs of the Pit to its leaderboard competition.

Blizzard hasn't said much about the Elixir of Holy Bolts and whether or not it's okay that it's doing a majority of the work in The Pit. Adam Fletcher, the global community development director, wrote, "We've been having some talks about the elixir," on X last week.

A patch for the game went out this week that included a number of bug fixes, but none of them addressed the elixir. A midseason patch is presumably on its way, which could be where a fix or some kind of nerf will happen.

Given that Blizzard has pledged to only fix bugs that are actually breaking the game in some critical way, I wouldn't be surprised if it just lets it stay. Everyone can use the elixir; it's just that some classes benefit much more from it. The fact that it hasn't carried people into tier 200, the highest level of The Pit, means it's still a challenge for the relatively small number of people playing at that level. I say let everyone have their fun or simply choose not to use it.

Associate Editor

Tyler has covered games, games culture, and hardware for over a decade before joining PC Gamer as Associate Editor. He's done in-depth reporting on communities and games as well as criticism for sites like Polygon, Wired, and Waypoint. He's interested in the weird and the fascinating when it comes to games, spending time probing for stories and talking to the people involved. Tyler loves sinking into games like Final Fantasy 14, Overwatch, and Dark Souls to see what makes them tick and pluck out the parts worth talking about. His goal is to talk about games the way they are: broken, beautiful, and bizarre.