It made me smile. I hope you will see irony in your post.
a. There's not irony in facts. I wasn't complaining that he gained 20k damage. It actually made our run much smoother because he's not so reliable on my damage to kill mobs, which means that when I do die (which I do, just not as much as before), he doesn't just sit there and hope I get back before he's overwhelmed.
Actually, I encouraged him to test it out on our run. He was quite pleased, as was I.
b. EVERY class is now gear dependent. It's not misinformation, because all you really do is switch out two slots...weapon and shield.
c. As far as repair bills go, I think the AH is now our source of repair money. I lost about 25k on my Seigebreaker run last night, but made back nearly 500k on selling just two items that I got from that same run. My guess is that's why they buffed the rare probability from elite packs on stack five of NV. The drawback is now people actually won't want to do bosses, because they're nowhere near as rewarding. I can see an increase in pony level runs.