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Archive for the ‘Diablo III’ Category

treasure-seeker-victor-lee

Facebook Like Updates

Blizzard’s Diablo fanpage on Facebook rolled past the 650,000 ‘likes’ mark recently and, needless to say, we were rewarded with a new piece of artwork and a screenshot! The artwork given is a concept of the mischievous looking Treasure Seeker. This artwork wa done by Vic Lee and he’ll randomly and rarely appear in dungeons, but when he does you’ll want to beat the candy out of him as he’ll drop progressively better loot with each hit. Don’t let him escape! The image is really cool and, if you’re interested in reading more about this most cunning of creatures, you can do so below at the Diablo INC Gamers post!

The screenshot is of a male monk and a trio of fallen shaman and this screenshot seems to have been taken mere seconds after the previous monk shot we were rewarded, the one with the poisonous cloud of gas. A pretty cool shot and a lot of carnage, check it out in full size below!

The Diablo Facebook Ransom is Paid: Part V – Diablo INC Gamers

Diablo Facebook Fanpage – Facebook

Blues On The Treasure Seeker

As a little extra, it seems like the blue posters were more than ready to discuss the Treasure Seeker a little after these latest art updates. Bashiok let us know that the Treasure Seeker was inspired by the little bastards in Golden Axe you’d wake up to stealing your stuff and have to kick the crap out of them. Yeah, you remember those guys… He also just told us that the balance on that little menace was not tuned correctly back at BlizzCon 2010 and he was indeed dying too easily to ranged classes and casters. You can read those full interactions and everyone’s thoughts on them below!

Blue on the Treasure Seeker – Diablo INC Gamers

More Art Controversy

A keen fan, that apparently has way too much time to ponder on his hands, named Steyaertr has revived the good old Art Controversy relating to Diablo III’s new, more colorful style, by taking a bunch of clips from the old Wizard, Monk, and Demon Hunter gameplay videos and whipping them through some filters to give them a darker and in his opinion, more gothic, look. Diablo INC Gamers first reported this and said that the new look he gave the videos is in fact oversaturated and too dark to see anything at all. This is, as many of you know, not the first time that people do something like this. Over the years there have been many, many arguments and debates, many reworks of those static images and, well, just a lot of whining too. I personally I feel that most of the amazing art and texture work would be going to waste if Blizzard used a style such as the one in this video. What do you think? Do you like the visuals we’ve seen thus far or do you feel it needs that more hardcore look?

The Art Controvery Returns…? – Diablo INC Gamers

PvE & PvP Balance

The Diablo III balance talk is back yet again and this time Bashiok had a few more words on the always present issue of PvE and PvP balancing. He said, on the note of balancing PvE and PvP separately, it’s something they want to largely avoid. We do have the ability to keep separate functionality, but we want to try to avoid big differences that make it feel like two different games when you play PvE and PvP.

One area where things work differently, and they think it’s ok, is in the case of Crowd control, like stuns, snares, slows, etc. The duration of these skills is fairly significantly reduced when used against players, however, that same reduction in effectiveness is also see in the PvE game when it comes to unique/champion/boss monsters. So, it’s not only a jarring difference, it’s also actually experienced in PvE. This is very similar to how World of Warcraft does it, and, I would not be surprised if we see something like diminishing returns come into play at some point…

Bashiok says that the bottom line is that they’ll have to wait and see but, balancing them separately is something Blizzard has the ability to do if needed but would prefer to largely avoid. It is, as usual, great to see so much thought going into all of this and, well, as with the whole art controversy thing, I think issues like this are safest in the hands of the guys at Blizzard. The only thing we will need to worry about is getting some sleep once the game hits. Read more about all of this balance talk below!

Blue on Balancing PvP and PvE Separately – Diablo INC Gamers

Combat & Weapon Choices

 A fan recently started a post up on the official Battle.net forums saying that he, or she, heard that all characters, creeps and monsters have a 95% flat chance to hit, then asking whether there would at least be traits to influence these percentages because he could well see a Demon Hunter or Monk avoiding more hits… Lucky for us, Bashiok couldn’t let that question go without an answer, so here it goes.

He let the fan, and indirectly all of us know, that there is no stat to modify an enemies chance to hit you, but, there is a Dodge stat. It’s only given in small amounts through traits, and potentially some specific items. With Dodge, an enemy could still “hit” you, but you dodge the hit negating the damage entirely. He says that it is a stat that’s being controlled fairly strictly, and as the poster said is probably going to be more appropriate for some classes (ie monk), while others may instead have more in the way of damage mitigation. Blizzard don’t intend for Dodge to overcome the need for damage mitigation through Defense and related damage reduction stats, even for the classes that have more of it available to them. Well, while that definitely answered everything, the poster wanted more, as any good Diablo fan should.

Next up he asked a quick question about rune swapping that didn’t really yield any new information and lastly, a very good question that I am glad was asked! He asked whether all the weapon types would actually be useful in Diablo III, unlike in Diablo II where some were hands down better than others.

In response, he was told that Blizzard are spending plenty of ‘thought cycles’ to ensure weapon choices are indeed choices, and not determined by a clear cut strength to go for one over another. Traits and skills obviously play a part in weapon choice as there are traits that offer bonuses while using a specific weapon type, and some skills favor certain types of weapons. As far as the base benefit of simply carrying around these weapons, yeah the bonuses associated between two weapons over one weapon are being kept in mind. Staves and 2-handers can have bigger and more powerful affixes than are allowed to generate on 1-handed weapons, for example. Equal amounts of sockets. That kind of thing. What else can I say, I am glad they are catering for all the styles and preferences out there. I, personally, have not yet even made my mind up about which class I want to play, let alone the weapons they will use. I will need to think long and hard on all of this.

If you want to read more about all of the aforementioned news, check the links below for all of it!

Blue on Combat, Rune-Swapping, and Two-Handed Weapons – Diablo INC Gamers

Looking_for_Baal_by_choboroy

Fan Art Watch

Time for the next two Fan Art Watch posts! Oh my, is there a lot of good stuff to look at this week! First up, in Fan Art Watch #80, we have 5 new pieces from the Diablo 1 / 2 gallery over at Diablo INC Gamers. My favourite of the lot has got ot be the Hydralisk-like version of the demon in ‘Looking for Baal?’ by Choboroy. Quite a frightening looking baddie, to be sure. After that we have 4 different, and I really do mean quite different, realistic, funny, colorful, they’ve got it all covered and definitely deserve your views!

In Fan Art Watch #81, Flux gives us a couple of new Sorceress images while apparently warning of a lot more to come! I don’t think anyone would really complain about any Sorceress fan art at all as most of them really do look quite good. Check all of that out below and be sure to leave those comments of appreciation.

Diablo Fan Art Watch #81: Weekend Sorceresses – Diablo INC Gamers

Diablo Fan Art Watch #80: Duriel – Looking for Baal? – Diablo INC Gamers

DiabloCast: Epsiode I

After the apparent success of Force’s Purgatory episode recently posted on Diablofans.com, it seems like the two have teamed up yet again, this time bringing us the first episode in a new series titled DiabloCast. In this promised weekly podcast they plan to discuss all the happenings in the world of Diablo for each week. The first episode clocks in at around 25 minutes and I guess is worth the watch if you want a different perspective on everything that’s happening in the news. Check it out on YouTube or over at Diablofans.com!

DiabloCast: Epsiode I – Diablofans

Diablo 3 – DiabloCast: The Diablo 3 Podcast – Episode 1 – YouTube

Diablo 3 Smalls

Diablo III Smalls:

Poll: Who is Your Favorite Character? – Diablofans

A DiabloFans Editorial: The Guiding Parchment – Diablofans

http://diablo.incgamers.com/blog/comments/no-d3-pax-east/ – Diablo INC Gamers

 PAX East Panels on Being a CM,  Facebook, and Working for Activision – Diablo INC Gamers

Questions & Answers:

Q: What is the next big event you guys will be at to talk about Diablo 3? – Scyberdragon
A: We haven’t announced any events except BlizzCon. But if we do we’ll definitely be on the tweeterspace letting you know. – Diablo

Q: How’s the Gargantuan for the WD looking? – MultiKillGaming
A: Amazing. Almost too cool to be a class skill. – Diablo

Q: How are the bosses coming along? Are they all as awesome as the Siegebreaker, or *gasp* awesomer? – Vulcaino
A: Way awesomer. – Diablo

Q: Say I found an item in D3 that pwned, then it was nerfed in a patch. Would I still keep that pre-patch item? Or would it disappear? – AcidReign87
A: You’d keep the item of course. It would simply be changed to reflect the alteration made to it in the patch. – Diablo

Q: When you say 18 sets you mean 18 different boots, leggings,etc? And does that 18 include unique armor or are they totally different? – Theeliminator2k
A: They’re visual tiers of gear, not actual specific items by name and stat. It’s the same as Diablo II, but more and better. – Diablo
A: To clarify, there are 18 complete tier looks. Complete. 18 individual looks for each item slot. – Diablo

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Diablo 3 Logo White

Diablo III ‘Technically Complete’

In some pretty interesting and in my opinion extremely exciting news, Mike Morhaime and Frank Pearce recently commented on Diablo III’s progress saying that the “development is technically complete”, with only internal testing and feedback left to work on. Now, all of this needs to be taken with a grain of salt, as people often over think things like this. Firstly, this quote, and all the information being talked about here, was taken from an interview that the Blizzard head honchos had with French site, Liberation.fr. So all said, information had to be translated, and, as you all well know, things are often misinterpreted and lost in the translation process. But anyway, even the crudest form of the translated information does give us some hope and what I’d call good news.

Now first, let us have a look at the question asked and answer given. (Bare in mind, the translation might well be a little off!)

Q: I suppose that you do not have a world-hysteria scoop to offer the readers of Liberation concerning the official and definitive release date of Diablo 3?
A: Alas, no. Just to confirm to you that we are full at work for the game to release this year. The development is technically completed. We are in a internal-testing and feedback-gathering phase. Yes, there are good chances of releasing before the end of 2011, but it is impossible to us, at this time, to guarantee you that.

With the help of a few, ever keen, forum members, they came to the conclusion that Mike and Frank were referring to the core engine of the game that had been completed. Now, the team can apparently focus on the content, the game world, the game rules and obviously the polish of the game. They say that to sum things up, we actually learn nothing new here and Diablo INC Gamers feels that this does seem to contradict a lot of what we’ve been hearing recently from Blizzard themselves, with the Male Demon Hunter not being complete, some runes still rough drafts and the Demon Hunter’s dual resource being more of a concept than final product. 

I guess this information and these quotes mean varying amounts to everyone out there. Sure, it’s great that they once again said that they want to release the game in 2011, but one thing I will say is that if the Diablo III team does in fact have the world complete, the story in tact, the quests where they need to be, the skills, mostly at least, working as intended, and have no plans to suddenly add another act or class to the game, then, well, that does shine some hope on our Diablo III beta plight. If all that is true the game may well be ready for us to test it sooner, rather than later, as most of the polish, balancing and all that other goodness would probably be done during the closed beta. What is also worth keeping in mind is what I spoke about a couple of episodes ago, where during the Quarter 1 Activision / Blizzard Conference Call, Mike Morhaime actually mentioned that we might well be hearing more about the Diablo III beta during their next call, happening in May. All of this does sound good and I guess we should all just hold thumbs and hope to hear more, or some clarification on all of this, soon.

Check the links below to read the full stories and let me know what you think.

Diablo III’s “development is technically completed” – Diablo INC Gamers

Diablo III Development “Technically Completed” – Diablofans

Exploiting The Magic Find Stat In Groups

A  fan recently asked a question that has, apparently, come up quite a lot over the past few months on the official Diablo III forums in discussions of Diablo III item hunting.  In short, said fan asked the following – ‘With every character getting their own drops, what’s to to prevent some players from standing in the back row and doing very little, if they’re going to share in the experience and get items anyway?’ The example provided was, what if there is one very powerful level 60 character in hell and he has 3 friends that are following him around doing relatively little work because they are in fact stacked up with Magic Find on their gear, LOTS of magic find. Will the three Magic Find characters be able to leech the drops from the powerful level 60? This is assuming that they are level 60 as well. So, said fan feels that this mechanic might well be abused, and abused hard.

Bashiok replied and he had quite a bit to say about it, starting off by saying that sure, it could be a problem, but… he claims that the entire Magic Find system, the way loot drops and all that entails in co-op play will be fairly heavily restricted to specific sources and amounts. He gave the following example, which is completely hypothetical, of course. Let’s say that the only magic find available is from placing a diamond gem in a head slot. It’s useful because of the amount it provides, but maybe other gems in a head slot provide things like bonus XP, bonus gold, etc. Then it’s not a choice of power vs. MF and building characters around the system, but a choice between interesting bonuses that will probably change through the career of a character. He then says that’s just a thought on how it could work and that it is still under consideration. Blizzard apparently likes the idea of having some way to improve your chances to find magic items, but not as a driving statistic for characters.

Lastly, Bashiok just mentions that it is definitely worth noting in this case that enemies in Diablo III are more sophisticated. You’ll find them targeting characters in your group they perceive as weaker, keeping distance, and cooperating to try to kill you and your group. So having one person run ahead to face pull everything, let alone be able to solo everything in a multiplayer game, probably isn’t going to work out too well. We can also just assume that said monsters will in fact scale, become more powerful, with each extra character in the game, so  that said having one character do most of the work just doesn’t seem that likely.

If you want to read all about this fan’s interactions with Bashiok regarding Magic Find In Groups you can check the post linked below!

Blue on MF Exploits in Groups – Diablo INC Gamers

Tyreal

Win Tyreals Hylt!

The guys and girls over at the Diablo Database have decided that it has been far too long since their last giveaway and oohh does that mean good things for us! So, to slake our thirst, for a little while at least, they just wanted to give us a little reward for being as patient as we are. At the same time, though, this will help us stay even more up-to-date with all the Diablo III happenings out there right now. So, what is this reward, you ask? (Yes, you Diablo guys might not appreciate this quite as much as the WoW guys out there, sorry!)

They’re giving away all 5 of the World of Warcraft digital pets to 3 lucky winners. All you have to do to enter is ‘like’ the Diablo Fan Page on Facebook and follow D3DB on Twitter! But wait, that’s not all! One incredibly lucky winner will also receive the highly sought out, extremely rare and nearly impossible to obtain Tyrael’s Hylt pet code! This pet code was a gift for attending the 2008 Worldwide Invitational in Paris and awards a Feat of Strength in-game along with the amazingly cool pet. Woah. So yes, that is in fact why this is Diablo related. For all you Blizzard fans out there, this is a must enter and you can find the full details, and links to enter, below. Good luck!

1) ‘Like’ the official Diablo page on Facebook – http://facebook.com/Diablo

2) Follow D3DB on Twitter – http://twitter.com/D3DB

3) Email contest@d3db.com with a link to your Facebook & Twitter pages, after this you’ll be entered!.

They let us know that they will randomly select 3 winners on March 15th, 2011. Winners will be contacted via their Facebook or Twitter accounts to confirm ownership and emailed the pet codes afterwards. Rest assured your Facebook and Twitter profile pages will not ever be published publicly for this contest. Lastly, the pet codes are good for European and North American players only.

Diablo 3 Database – D3DB

Diablo Fan Art

More delicious Fan Art! Yes, and there is indeed quite a load of it to look at today. First up we have Diablo INC Gamers Fan Art Watch #78. This post has two really cool pieces, one of a female monk that looks to have taken more than a bit of inspiration from the famous monk cosplayer, Christina Estrada, and secondly a really great speed-painting of an Amazon that seems to have just been in a bit of scrap. In Fan Art Watch #79 we get a look at a few pieces that were actually added to the official Blizzard gallery. Three incredibly detailed barbarians and The Butcher, which is one of my personal favourites, as it brings back a few pretty vivid memories, can be found below.

Diablo Fan Art Watch #78: Amazons and Monks – Diablo INC Gamers

Diablo Fan Art Watch #79: Barbs and the Butcher – Diablo INC Gamers

In some semi-related news it seems like that Limited Edition Diablo III Barbarian Overthrown Statue that was all the rage a while back is going on sale once more over at SideShow Toys, so, if any of you were looking to get your hands on that $300 masterpiece, now’s your chance.

Diablo III Barbarian Statue Back In-Stock – Diablo INC Gamers

Ranger_NKD_09_small

Ranger Class In Diablo III? Concept Art & More!

In what I see as quite an amazing find and an even more set of images, here are a few early concepts for the Ranger which eventually lead to the Demonhunter class in Diablo III. Yes, all those guessers from a couple of months back that thought the fifth class would in fact be a ranger were right, sort of. I have to say it is really great seeing these early concepts of how the class could have looked, compared to what it looks like now. These were all taken from the blog of Phroilan Gardner, a fantasy artist who worked for Blizzard Entertainment for quite a few years a while back. He contributed a lot Diablo III concept art as well as creating a great deal of World of Warcraft stuff, too. He has since parted ways with Blizzard Entertainment and has been posting tons of cool artwork on his blog.

He lets us know that he is happy with the way that the Demon Hunter turned out and that he absolutely can’t wait to play the class, saying that in his opinion it’s the closest thing to a Gothic-fantasy styled character in the current Diablo III hero lineup. These six images are most definitely worth looking at, along with all the other amazingly well done pieces on his blog. You can find the link below, enjoy

Phroilan’s Stuff – blogspot

Skill Trees / Tiers

Bashiok recently got involved in a thread about the skill trees and tiers in Diablo III and provided a nice explanation of how they work and why they’re set up the way they are.

He starts off by saying that skills are tiered out for progression. They serve not only as a reward as you level up, but also to ensure Blizzard is not dumping the entire game on a new player. Early tier skills tend to be cheap or free to cast, and have fairly straight forward mechanics and uses, like dealing damage to enemies. As the tiers progress, though, more complex systems are introduced, avoidance, mobility, maybe skills that cost a little more, or require a bit more finesse to pull off well. Then, the end of the tiers and these are usually the biggest, most expensive, and visually impressive. The tiers do start out simply and progress toward the bigger and ‘cooler’ spells. As they should. He says that Blizzard can also design and tune the beginning of the game with the skills available in mind, which really helps to ensure those first few hours aren’t frustrating.

I guess, while all of that really does make sense, and none of it is really anything new, it is good to hear the reasoning behind them setting it up the way they do. Bashiok then carries on by saying that while he’s sure there will be builds that take all the end tier skills, people will still need to pick skills throughout the tree to create a solid character, and they’re designing the skills to ensure they can continue to be as viable as possible regardless of character level. Some first and second tier skills will scale really well and will most likely be the bread and butter skills for a number of builds.

Bashiok concluded this all by giving us a bit of repeat information – The leveling progression is designed that you’d have all your skill tiers unlocked before you finish Normal. I guess this is the kind of information that players interested in the leveling process would really want to hear. You can have a look at all the full quote and other information included below. And yes, there are even a few images of the previously revealed traits and skill trees, courtesy of Diablo INC Gamers.

Blue on Skill Tiers and Clvl Requirements – Diablo INC Gamers

tristram-cathedral-fb-mar2011

Facebook ‘Like’ Updates

The ever entertaining Diablo Facebook Like Campaign has just yielded what is, in my opinion, some of the best artwork thus far. The Diablo Facebook Page hit and passed the 625,000 mark a day or two ago and we have been gifted a brand new piece of concept art and another screenshot!

The screenshot was previously released via the BlizzCon 2010 Diablo III Presskit, but it is still worth a look for those that have not seen it. The good part of this update, though, is definitely this amazing piece of the Tristram Cathedral and much of ‘New Tristram’ laid out in the distance. By far one of my favourite pieces of concept art to date and I absolutely can’t wait for more! Check both of these images out, in full size, below, and if you haven’t already, head on over to the Diablo III facebook page and give it a like!

Below is also a link to Diablo INC Gamers’ post of this update where a few questions about this new and exciting artwork are answered. Check that out, too, if you’re interested.

Diablo Facebook Page – Facebook

The Diablo Facebook Ransom is Paid: Part IV – Diablo INC Gamers

Diablo 3 Smalls

Diablo III Smalls:

Forum Watch #64: Y’all Wanna Debate? – Diablo INC Gamers

Vote: Will you play Hardcore Diablo III? – Diablo INC Gamers

Diablo III Weekly Wallpaper #84: Diablo with Light and Darkness – Diablo INC Gamers

The Dark Library #32 – Diablo INC Gamers

Blizzard’s “Anti-Modding” Stance: Another Look – Diablofans

Diablo II Season 7 Length Poll – Diablofans

ForceD3 – Purgatory Episode 5 – YouTube

Questions & Answers

Q: In game mic chat support? Will there be a Special Edition game with some extras included? Thank you for your time. – IceMan20k
A: Voice chat is a base feature of the new Battle.net platform, so it’s likely. We’ve not announced a collector’s edition. – Diablo

Q: Will gems give the same bonuses they did in Diablo 2? – illthegreat
A: No, they’re all pretty much different. Elemental damage comes from enchantments now, for instance. – Diablo

Q: Zoom. How much will we be able to zoom in D3 compared to SC2? – kiowa81
A: There’s no zoom feature planned beyond a slight perspective shift when engaged in conversations. – Diablo

Q: No zoom? then why there’s zoom in first gameplay trailer? (watch 1:27-2:23) – spareribs17
A: We did have a zoom function back in 2008. It was removed shortly after. – Diablo

Q: Has allowing 8 or 10 skills instead of 7 ever been seriously considered? 7 just seems so few to me… – yovargas
A: Of course. Everything is seriously considered. – Diablo

Q: Can runes be swapped when ever or do you need an artisan to equip/swap out runes? – Scyberdragon
A: Restrictions are likely for when/where you can change them. – Diablo

Q: Since you reworked stats to benefit all classes will gems be treated in the same manner? bc D2 gems in weapons didnt benefit casters – illthegreat
A: There is a “caster gem” for weapons. Potentially two depending on your build. – Diablo

Q: Hi, I’ve noticed two screenshots, on each of them the Barbarian looks different, In one he got warpaint in the other he doesn’t? Is it a new feature that allows you to add warpaint and/or tattoos to your character? Or has the skin of his model been changed? Personally I like the warpaint much more.
A: The barbarian will see a throwback to the classic blue war paint when equipping a specific gear set.

Q: Is it something similar to say, wearing Aldur’s on a Druid and the other class-specific sets for other classes?
A: No, it’s just the effect from the chest piece of one ‘tier’ set. Class specific items are still planned, but this would not be what it is, no.

Read Full Post »

Demon Hunter Male

More On The Male Demon Hunter

So with the big reveal of the Male Demon Hunter out-of-the-way, Blizzard decided it was finally time to update their official site with the artwork, animations and a couple of screenshots of this most badass of classes. On the site he boasts a pair of pistol crossbows, a nice new outfit that is, to many fans happiness, quite a bit different from the female version. But yes, while some say that metro sexual goatee and mustache is slightly Orlando Bloom in Pirates of the Caribean’ish, others are saying that it looks like a Necromancers bone armor and others yet can’t get over those boots. All I can say is that I’m glad we finally know what all the classes look like and, more importantly, know that all of them are in the game and working. (At least partially!) Last thing worth mention is that the male Demon Hunter is also sporting two glowing orbs, as its female counterpart does.

If you’re keen for more screenshots, artwork of just want to see that newly clad and animated bad boy in action, you can do so in the links below or over at the official site, Diablo3.com.

Diablo III Official Site

Male Demon Hunter Animation is Live – Diablo INC Gamers

Demon Hunter Extras

As a few extras, the guys and girls over at Diablo INC Gamers have been tallying the votes to see what the public things about this new, different from the female, look. Around 43 percent of the voters said that they loved the new look, which is a much better reaction than the one the concept art received. 36 percent of the voters said that the new, animated, version of the class was okay, but could be better. That said, the reactions are still a lot more positive, so that’s great! Check the polls and all the fans reactions out below, too, as I said, courtesy of Diablo INC Gamers. Diablofans also has a few follow-up questions up concerning some of the more complex, or misunderstood, questions about skill trees and rune combinations that were asked during their interview with Christian Litchner and Jason Bender. All of that and more can be found below. Enjoy!

Poll: The Male Demon Hunter’s Look – Diablo INC Gamers

Male Demon Hunter Follow-up – Diablofans

600k_1

Facebook Like Updates

Then third set of Diablo Facebook ‘like’ updates has been posted. As of typing this the Facebook page is sitting on a pretty decent 615k ‘likes’ and going up fast! First up we got a look at another piece of concept art that was, sadly, also not new. The artwork, which is of an unnamed and unknown demon, was done by Josh Tallman, the Senior Concept Artist working on Diablo III. Diablofans and Diablo INC Gamers both report that we did in fact see this back in 2008, which is quite a pity. To make up for it, though, we do have what has got to be one of my personal favourite screenshots to date. The shot is of a female monk wielding dual fist weapons interrupting a ritual being performed by Dark Vessels. What makes it so great is that, if you check the middle of the screenshot, where all the action is, you can see that one of the Dark Vessels has actually been cut clean in half by the monk, it is quite a sight. All that said, I would recommend you all check the full size screenshot out, you can do so below.

Diablo Fanpage – Facebook

The Diablo Facebook Ransom is Paid: Part III – Diablo INC Gamers

Third Batch of Screenshots and Art -Diablofans

facebook-feb22-cultist-circle

The next batch of content is no doubt just around the corner so keep checking back here for that! 😀

Zooming & Hardcore Deaths

In a few smalls which I will turn into, well, non-smalls, by talking about them here, we get a bit more information about zooming, or the lack-thereof, in Diablo III, aswell as death in hardcore mode. I suppose neither of these are really new pieces of news, it does give us a little to think about. A fan recently asked how much, or how far in, we would be able to zoom in Diablo III, compared to Starcraft II. The answer provided by @Diablo was a pretty simple one, though – There’s no zoom feature planned beyond a slight perspective shift when engaged in conversations. How do you feel about this? I think the fact that they are locking the perspective of the game will probably give them a little more creative freedom with the environments, it will be easier to balance the skills and classes and, the chances are also good that it will help them keep the performance, and the monitoring of it, more stable. (As if you zoom out further the chances are you will lose performance) Either way, it is interesting and I’d like to know how that ‘slight perspective change’ looks now, as we know the old side-view dialogue system was removed. Ultimately, I don’t see anyone really getting bent out of shape because of the lack of a zoom function, though!

Q: Zoom. How much will we be able to zoom in D3 compared to SC2? – kiowa81
A: There’s no zoom feature planned beyond a slight perspective shift when engaged in conversations. – @Diablo

Next up a fan asked about dying in hardcore mode, the mode I probably wouldn’t set foot in for quite some time after launch. The fan asked a pretty simple question and, well, received a pretty simple answer in response! The question was, what if your character is hardcore and dies. Can it be resurrected by your teammates? The answer, you ask? Well we all know this one! Nope. In hardcore dead is dead. I know, I know, old news, but still, it is still just so scary to think about. For those that have already read the post, yes, I did in fact fix the typo of doom in the question. If you want to know what the real, slightly more entertaining question was, you’re gonna have to check it out for yourself below!

Q: What if your character is hardcore and dies. Can he be redirected by your teammates? – koolgam3r
A: Nope. In hardcore dead is dead. – @Diablo 

If you want to read more about these two smalls, and the guys over at Diablo INC Gamers thoughts on them, check the links below!

@Diablo on Not-Zooming and Hardcore… something – Diablo INC Gamers

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Fan Art Watch

The next two Fan Art Watch posts are up over at Diablo INC Gamers and man, is there some impressive stuff to be seen. In Fan Art Watch # 76 we get a look at a piece by Ratzgoblin called Worldstone: An end is a new start. This piece shows off the Worldstone as it is being corrupted by Baal. Next up we have a piece by Freelancerart, which is definitely my personal favourite. This one is called Witch Doctor and, well, shows the witch doctor doing some of his crazy magic by a fire in the jungles of Kurast. Absolutely stunning. In Fan Art Watch #77 we take a look at a Diablo II themed pieces featuring the necromancer and his minions, quite humorous!

The guys over at Diablo INC Gamers, who do indeed keep posting these most amazing of pieces, say that if you enjoy the fac art and want to contribute to the growing community, be sure to stop by the Fan Creations Forum. There are many artists that frequent the forums, posting works in progress and completed pieces looking for feedback and conversation. They stress that you absolutely don’t have to be ‘arty’ in any way to join in. Sounds like a good deal to me and with art like this, who wouldn’t want to show some appreciation. Check both those fan art watch posts out below and enjoy!

Diablo Fan Art Watch #77: Weekend Necromancers – Diablo INC Gamers

Diablo Fan Art Watch #76: From the Worldstone Chamber to the Jungles of Kurast – Diablo INC Gamers

A Little Help Entering The Diablo III Beta

Need a little help entering the Diablo III beta? Well, Bashiok has been pretty quiet as of late, but, he did reply to a question recently regarding how one goes about entering Blizzard Betas, or I guess, the Diablo Beta specifically. Bashiok says that the most ‘consistent’ way is probably going to be just opting in through Battle.net, but, I will add that although that might be consistent, you are no doubt competing with 15 million others for a select few spots in the beta. Just make sure, if you do in fact have a Battle.net account, that you have created a beta profile and selected the Diablo Universe as one you’d like to test for. Lucky for us, though, that won’t be the only way to get in. The chances are good that there will be tons of websites offering keys in competitions or giveaways and things like the pre-order deals that some stores did for Starcraft II. Diablo INC Gamers took this time to assure us that they will be compiling a page for the Diablo III beta when the time comes that will include all the details we could ever need, with the aim of getting as many of us into the test as possible. Now that really warms the heart. So if you want to see Bashiok’s full interactions or just want to read more from Diablo INC Gamers, you can do so below!

How to Enter the Diablo III Beta – Diablo INC Gamers

Right, so the most consistent method is going to be to opt-in through Battle.net. There’s actually still a guide available for StarCraft II, and much of the info is still accurate for the process to opt-in for the Diablo III beta.

Aside from the normal opt-in there will undoubtedly be contests and promotions, such as the keys given away at BlizzCon. As we have info about additional ways you could potentially get a beta key we’ll of course let you know.

He pretty much just goes about saying that the same method we used to apply for the Starcraft II beta will apply for Diablo III.

PvP Balance In Diablo III

PvP. The PvP in Diablo III is no doubt one of the biggest selling points of a game of this type and also no doubt one of the most difficult things to balance. Bashiok made that pretty clear recently when jumping into a forum post to answer a few questions regarding what Blizzard are doing to balance the PvP, specifically for 1v1, by saying that PvP will be balanced, sure, but not that balanced. He pretty much just went on to tell the fact, who was quite adamant about getting answers, that they intend to get PvP balanced, yes, but want it to be fun and have meaning to it. What was, to me at least, the best part of this entire conversation was that Bashiok also said that PvP balance is not an integral goal to releasing the game and not something that they are going to hold the game for. (If they did, it might never come out!) The fan persisted, though, and next up he said that the real issue, which Bashiok was apparently dodging, was the whole A > B > C > D > A thing where the game comes down to just selecting a class or a spec that would work well against a different class or spec in order to win. Needless to say, Bashiok also shot that one down saying that he really doesn’t see it happening. Not with the amount of options out there, the breadth of customization and, well, the fun to be had!

So yes, there is a lot to think about when it comes to PvP balance, but really, will you be rolling a class and spec just because you think it will own in arena, just because you think it will counter a different class or spec? I doubt that. Well, not for quite some time at least. The chances are good players will play the classes they WANT to play, the classes they would enjoy playing, instead. Sure, later in the game’s lifespan issues like this may well arise, but hey, that’s what patching is for, right? 😀

If you want to read all about PvP balance and what Bashiok has to say about it, check the post linked below. Enjoy!

Blue on PvP Balance – Diablo INC Gamers

Diablo 3 Smalls

 

Diablo III Smalls:

Diablo Cosplay Updates – Diablo INC Gamers

The Diablo Chronicles: Socketables – Diablofans

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Demon Hunter Male

Male Demon Hunter Revealed

The male Demon Hunter has as last been revealed and we get a look at this new badboy in a couple of screenshots and some concept art. (Sadly, no videos of him in action just yet!) I feel the reveal was pretty lackluster, I mean, they didn’t really even do anything big on any of the official sites, they just seemed to send the information, screenshots and artwork out to various sites to debut it. I won’t complain, though, because along with the reveal we have a couple of really interesting and overly extensive interviews, too. I thought I would just tell you all that there were a few complaints about the male Demon Hunter’s look, mostly saying that he is way too similar to the female version of the character.

The biggest, and nearly only difference, is the fact that the male version has a bigger hoodie covering more of his face. I guess if you liked the female version of the character the chances are good you’ll like this one, too. Anyway, about those interviews I mentioned, Diablo INC Gamers gave us a bit of a summary of all the good stuff to be found in the interviews.

  • The Demon Hunter’s recently-announced Sentry skill works like a mechanical version of the Wizard’s Hydra, firing arrows at nearby enemies.
  • Demon Hunters may well get quivers, items which would work much like the Wizard’s Orbs; off-hand items that could be paired with one-handed weapons to gain additional magical offensive bonuses. This would be cool, because, if you remember a few weeks ago I did also mention that Demon Hunters would be able to dual wield those little pistol crossbows and with that being as cool as it is, this may well give a bit more incentive to those that would prefer to use the bows instead.
  • Though the Demon Hunter is a ranged attacker, the class does have some skills that will work better at mid-range than from further away. First thing that comes to mind when that is mentioned is definitely the Grenade skill, but hey, who knows!
  • Apparently some Diablo I and Diablo III Uniques will almost certainly make a return in Diablo III, with some changes to update them for the new game systems.
  • The Demon Hunter’s resource system isn’t ready to reveal yet, but it sounds like the class has two mana-like types of resources, ‘aggression and hatred and discipline and self-mastery.’ We were told that the hatred regens very quickly and skills that use it will almost always be available, while the discipline is slower but the skills that use it are more powerful.
  • Lastly, there were no specifics given on the Demon Hunter’s runestone bonuses, but comparisons were made to the Wizard, with changes in damage type, as well as apparently ‘much bigger’ modifications.

All of this information was gleamed from four different interviews with Christian Lichtner, the Art Director on Diablo III and Jason Bender, the Senior Designer on the very same game, who seemed to be taking point on the Demon Hunter launch. So if you wish to read more of the male Demon Hunter, see more images and immerse yourself fully in all its goodness, check the sites, interviews and articles linked below. Huge thanks to Diablo INC Gamers, GamePlanetNZ, Gamespot, Gamestar and Diablofans.

DiabloFans Presents the Male Demon Hunter – Diablofans

The Male Demon Hunter Debuts, Plus Developer Interviews! – Diablo INC Gamers

»The guy with the big axe never gets old« – Gamestar

Diablo III’s Jason Bender & Christian Lichtner – Gameplanet

Diablo III Q&A – Inside the Demon Hunter – Gamespot

@Diablo’s Mysterious Poem

Right before the male Demon Hunter’s reveal, his presence on our screens and in our minds, @Diablo tweeted a pretty strange little poem.

Machinations dark by shadows still.
Farms rot, livestock falls ill.
Endless march not knowing fear.
They shall soon as he moves near.

I think most did agree that this had a direct link to the fated arrival of the Demon Hunter, but, as usual, there are rumors aplenty. Some feel it is linked to the evil arising in Tristram, others to the armies gathering at the Arreat Crater, which is it? No one knows, but you can read all about it below.

@Diablo’s Mysterious Poem? – Diablo INC Gamers

Demon Hunter Resources 

As an extra, for all those that just can’t wait and need as much Demon Hunter news as they possibly can get, the ever vigilant Flux from over at Diablo INC Gamers has set up a bit of a collection of all the information we have about the Demon Hunter’s resource system. Enter ‘On the Drawing Board #21: The Demon Hunter’s Resource(s) Revealed’. While the full and I guess official details for the Demon Hunter’s resources have yet to be announced, the Blizzard guys gave some pretty big pieces of information during the various male Demon Hunter reveal interviews. As you can expect, there’s already a booming conversation, or debate, or whatever you want to call it, going on about all of it.

So in the latest On The Drawing Board article, Flux discusses how the developers repeatedly stressed the big focus on the duality of the Demon Hunter. That the class is meant to have a planning, clever, meticulous nature merged with a streak of raging hatred. The resource reflects that, and is split in two. While the devs said nothing about the visual, Flux did draw up what he envisioned for it and I gotta say it looks like it could work. So without spoiling this any further, as I do expect you all to check it out, I will leave it at that. Check the post linked below for all the information we currently have on the Demon Hunter resource system, as usual, courtesy of Diablo INC Gamers. Enjoy!

On the Drawing Board #21: The Demon Hunter’s Resource(s) Revealed – Diablo INC Gamers

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What Diablo III Could Have Looked Like

Diablo III was officially announced by Blizzard back in June of 2008, if I remember correctly. Long before then, though, there were rumors floating around that the third game in the Diablo series was in fact under development at the Blizzard North offices, the same guys who were in charge of the first two games in the series. Keep in mind that this was never confirmed by the guys at Blizzard. But, as things sometimes go, Blizzard decided to shut down Blizzard North’s offices in 2005.

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Now, at the start of 2011, Kotaku has posted up some screenshots that it claims comes from a build of that earlier version of Diablo III. Kotaku has not given any information about these shots, where they came from, what exactly it is that we’re looking at, nothing at all, it’s all open to speculation. We can see that this is in fact a Diablo game, that much is sure, and these screenshots have an art style that is much more like that of the first two Diablo games, and some people are quite sad that it was ditched, it seems. I, personally, love the art style that Blizzard chose to use for Diablo IIII, I think it will suite the game brilliantly and looks absolutely beautiful in motion. But hey, that’s just me! The version of the game used in these leaked shots was probably quite far from finished, too, so I guess it could still have improved. Also, there seems to be quite a lot of camera flexibility, too, which is uncommon for the Diablo series and I guess another thing to keep in mind is that these shots seem to be set in ‘heaven’ or something like it, so they will obviously not be that dark or gothic. Ultimately, for 2005 or earlier, the shots do look quite impressive.

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So, if you’re interested in what Diablo III could have looked like, should things have happened different, give the galleries linked below a peek and let me know what you think. Diablo INC Gamers also have a few polls running asking which their user base prefers, and, as I said, most seem to prefer the older style. Enjoy and keep checking back here for more on this!

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This Is What Diablo III Looked Like A Long Time Ago – Kotaku

Screenshots from Blizzard North’s version of Diablo III – Diablo INC Gamers

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Facebook Like Campaign

The Diablo III Facebook Like Campaign is rolling ahead furiously and we’ve managed to reach the 575,000 ‘likes’ mark. With this checkpoint reached and passed we were treated with a new screenshot and piece of concept art. The screenshot posted shows a male Monk about to engage a huge mob of Fallen and the concept art is of the witch doctor’s Firebomb skill. Both pretty cool looking and, well, any new Diablo III images are welcome! The next reveal is set for 600,000 ‘likes’ which we will no doubt soon reach, so keep checking back here for more on that, it could be a big one!

firebomb-concept

On a side note, if anyone was wondering what the poison cloud was, @Diablo answered a question about that the day it was released and it seems like the monk had just killed a rare monster with the Plague affix. Interesting!

Q: The new concept art and screenshot are GREAT! What’s the green cloud, a gas potion or a skill maybe? – akumagin
A: Looks to me like the monk just killed a rare monster with the Plague affix. – Diablo

Diablo III Facebook Page – Facebook

Diablo 3 Smalls

Diablo III Smalls:

The Dark Library #30 – Diablo INC Gamers

Diablo 3 Console Progress Stalled – Diablo INC Gamers

Bashiok Talks Item Hunting and Player Killing – Diablo INC Gamers

Bashiok Talks ‘Macro’ and Diablo III’s Combat – Diablo INC Gamers

Diablo III Questions & Anwers:

Q: Haven’t heard much about cinematics in D3. Are they many planned? Will they be shown between acts like in D2? How cool are they? – hartdev
A: They’re going to blow people away. – Diablo 

Q: What is a skill rune effect for Locust Swarm? That skill is so sick by itself, I can’t fathom how it could be modified to be better. – AcidReign87
A: Indigo‘s chance to jump to multiple targets instead of just one is pretty awesome. – Diablo

Q: The salvage box would look awesomer if it looked like a Hellraiser-esque puzzle box – drbuttocks
A: The look has actually been changed, and that’s not too far off a description. – Diablo

A: In an interview about her new project, the lovely @FeliciaDay calls out @Diablo III as a game she can’t wait to play: http://usat.ly/gUc6Mo – Diablo
Q: who cares, she’s 1 of millions that can’t wait to play it. She isn’t special. – Tyrael
A: You mad, Tyrael? – Diablo

Q: Is there a way to see how each rune modifies the skill in the game? Otherwise we will need google again like we did in d2. – GuXiGlen
A: Mousing a rune over a skill will show how it effects that skill in the tooltip (and compares to the currently used rune). – Diablo

A: Is there a link where I can order my Virtual Ticket for the Blizzcon 2011? – akumagin
Q: We’ve only just announced it. Once the BlizzCon site goes live and we have more info we’ll be sure to let you know. – Diablo

Q: Will you be allowed to resurrect your team mate in Arenas? If not, are resurrection potions still in the game for regular play? – NocturneGS
A: Once you’re dead in the Arena you have to wait until the next round. No reagents for resurrecting friends in co-op, instead there’s a short window of time to click on them or they’re running back. – Diablo

Q: Will there be any random encounters or quest that we won’t find in the Single play? – kiowa81
A: We’re building the game for co-op. Single player is just like playing the co-op game by yourself. So, no, no planned differences. Aside from difficulty, of course. – Diablo



Q: How many shrine effects will be in the game? Are there some new effects (compared to D2) or maybe negative or random (like in D1)? – Rocky3007
A: Diablo III shrine effects are short term buffs designed to push you into combat to get the most from them. No penalties. – Diablo

Q: How are you guys handling runes for more passive skills like shouts or auras? – Scyberdragon
A: Depends. Mostly increasing effect/duration, but some do actually change to offensive abilities or change mechanics entirely. – Diablo

Q: When I’m playing with my friends, will we each focus on a single artisan to level faster or will that not make a difference? – Limiate
A: It’ll probably help a bit to diversify artisan leveling among a group of friends. To start at least. – Diablo

Q: Is there anything hidden, like easter-eggs, or anything like that – Unfound at Diablo3.com ?——- PLZ DON’T ANSWER WITH MAYBE. – theRobhimself
A: POSSIBLY. – Diablo

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Fan Art Watch – Diablo INC Gamers

Diablo INC Gamers next Fan Art Watch is up, this one is focused on ‘Epic Battles’ and features quite a few, well, epic battles. I have to say that there are some incredibly talented Diablo fans out there, that much is obvious. So, if you want to check the full size images out, have a look at more from their creators, or just browse some of the other Fan Art Watches, check the links below and enjoy! 

Diablo Fan Art Watch #75: Epic Battles – Diablo INC Gamers

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Pulse Logo Small

I did not really want to do an episode on Sunday, but, the news was just getting too much to ignore. I am slightly overworked at the moment so if the quality is a little off this week, please forgive me! Anyway, enjoy some General Blizzard and Diablo news!

Watch in HD! Remember to like it, favourite it, share it and subscribe!

‘Read More’ for links!

(more…)

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Diablo 3 Logo White

Before even starting this Diablo III news up I should just tell you all to check the Blizzard Entertainment post out that I published right before this one, it is a must read for any Diablo fan. There was quite a bit of information about Diablo III and Blizzard’s plans with it, or just their plans in general for the next year or two. Just sayin’, it might well make the wait for this no doubt most amazing of games a little easier!

Diablo III 2011?

Okay so let me first say that there are a lot of different stories about Diablo III’s release over the past couple of days and whether it’s coming this year or not… So what it basically comes down to is that Blizzard want to release the game this year, sure, they really do, but they won’t if it is not finished. We all know the way of Blizzard, how they do things, how they make their games and the amount of work that goes into making them pretty much perfect at launch. So firstly, what do we have to lead us to believe that we won’t see it this year?

So Bashiok replied to all the rumors and speculation regarding the what was said during the Investor’s Conference Call last week. He said, as I will keep saying, that the quote that spread across the internet like wildfire was very much and very widely misunderstood. Blizzard has not announced any releases for the year of 2011 and that doesn’t mean that we won’t see one, all it means is that they are not going to announce a game which they are not certain that they will be able to deliver on time. Blizzard and / or Activision can’t just go out and tell their investors that they might release a game or that there is a chance of it being released and then nothing comes. So the most important part of the quite, to me at least, is that Blizzard are happy with the progress of Diablo III right now. Also, Blizzard are, as you will hear in just a second, trying to contain this situation and make sure people don’t go totally crazy because nothing has been announced yet. The quote reads as follows:

I want to make sure it’s clear that what was stated on the investor conference call was this: Blizzard has not announced a release date for its next global release. If we don’t release a major title in 2011, then for planning purposes we would expect to launch 2 titles in 2012.

This has been misreported/misinterpreted as an announced release schedule for 2011 and 2012, which it is not. While we’re pleased with the progress of Diablo III, we have not announced a release date for it or for any other upcoming Blizzard game. We’re currently contacting a number of outlets to request that they make the appropriate corrections in order to avoid any further confusion.

Okay, so as we heard it does mean that if it were to happen that their games would be delayed then, as they said, we would see at least two big title releases in 2012. Moving on!

The next piece of information tells us that Blizzard does in fact want to release Diablo III by the end of the year. When asked by Kotaku,  at the Interactive Arts and Sciences Awards, about the progress of Diablo III and whether we would in fact see it this year, Blizzard co-founder and president Michael Morhaime had the following to say:

“We really, really hope so. That’s our goal,” Pardo said. “Our goal is to get there. But you know, at the end of the day, we are going to get it right. That’s more important.

“We’re going to promise, we’re going to get it out there when it’s awesome. And, we’re crossing our fingers, maybe it will be this year.”

Now that’s the kind of quotes I want to see. Straight from Blizzard themselves, not through Activision during a conference call that was aimed at investors, not the general public. The last part of information that I wanted look at regarding this was the following quote that was actually made right at the end of that conference call last week. Mike Morhaime had this to say which saddened me, but, at the same time it does shine a little hope on our Diablo III in 2011 plight.

“D3 development continues to go well, and we’re very excited about the game… I’m looking forward to sharing more news about the game, and our upcoming beta, during the next conference call.”

Why is it sad? Well the next conference call is only set to happen in early May and that is a good few months off. If we only get to hear about the beta then, well, once the beta starts and assuming it does close to that time, the game release is probably around 6 months off. That means, well, we might see the game out in November or December of 2011 if we’re lucky. But, as I said, any beta news is great news! 

So the question remains, I guess; will we see Diablo III in 2011? Blizzard seem to want it done and, well, I think looking at all of the information we have it seems like we are nearing the release of the beta, anyway, so I will go ahead and say I am quite confident that we will. Below you can find a hoard of links that will tell you all about all of this release date drama from a great many different people. There are a lot of opinions out there right now, but sadly, not that much solid information. Check them out, read through the facts and decide for yourself. I will keep my hopes up and keep believing that I may well be playing Diablo III before 2012.

Activision/Blizzard Q4 2010 Investor Conference Call – Diablo INC Gamers

Blue: 2011 Not Out of the Question After All – Diablo INC Gamers

Blizzard’s Goal is to Release Diablo III in 2011 – Diablo INC Gamers

Extras – Rage, Anger & Disappointment

As an extra, or rather just as a little addition, a few threads were started up over on the Battle.net forums and, I guess I would call these rage threads. Quite a few fans were disappointed and angered at quite a few things. Some blaming the engine used for Diablo III for delaying the games release, others just complaining that Blizzard are taking too long to announce the Diablo III beta. There is a ton of rage and a ton of hostility. I don’t like it one bit. I really think that, as usual, we should trust that Blizzard know what they are doing and are doing things in the best possible way. As I warned, things get a bit nasty and I really can’t believe how far some people go. If you’re interested in all the slander and badmouthing Bashiok takes, and his responses to it,  check the post linked below.

Blue on Slow Development and Fan Discontent – Diablo INC Gamers

wall-of-zombies-conceptConcept for the witch doctor ability Wall of Zombies.

Diablo Facebook Like Campaign

The Warcraft Facebook page recently hit 1million who ‘Like’ it and they apparently rubbed it in us Diablo fans faces. So as we know there are most definitely millions of Diablo fans out there, hell, I think most of those that like the Warcraft page are probably Diablo fans, too. So to take the fight back Blizzard have some incentives lined up for us. Beginning at 550,000 ‘Likes’ of the Diablo Facebook page they will post new art and screenshots, and …for every 25,000 additional page ‘Likes’ they receive after that up to 1million. Woah, so that is a potential ton of visual stimulation for us. The Diablo Facebook page is currently at around 570,000 likes and yes, that means that the first batch of art and screenshots were in fact released and you have probably been staring at them while reading this.

D3_SkeletonKingKing Leoric by Brom

We were also given a few extra details about what we can expect for every 25,000 likes. Bashiok said that mostly we will one piece of art and one screenshot, 2-3 new pieces per update. All of that is amazing news and I can’t wait to see more of this most anticipated of games. The first few pieces that were released can be found scattered throughout this post. There were a few releases that we had actually already seen,at BlizzCon 2001, but hey, that is fine by me! So head on over to the Diablo Facebook Page, give it a like and check the new art out. Enjoy!

Bashiok: On an average day the Diablo Facebook page gets about 4k new people who ‘Like’ the page. So even if that average holds steady there’d be some stuff released once a week. Hopefully though this causes a bit of a spike to get things moving. It’s 2-3 pieces per update, usually one piece of art and one screenshot.
Bashiok, Blizzard Entertainment

Q: How many new arts/screenshots can we expect for every 25k ‘Likes’? –  Nagatieu
A: 2-3. Right now we’re getting about 3-5k new ‘Likes’ a day, so even if it keeps the same pace we’ll be releasing art. – Diablo

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The screenshots are of the male witch doctor hunkering down in a torture room to use his new poison dart ability and the female demon hunter with a combo attack. These demons didn’t put up much of a fight.

Some pieces that I didn’t feel I needed to link here can also be found below, namely the class wallpaper style images from BlizzCon. They have been all over the internet already and I’m pretty sure everyone has seen them by now. If you feel you might have missed them, check below! There will no doubt be a lot more cool art released soon so keep checking back here, or over on the Diablo Facebook page, for those updates.

Diablo III Class Gallery – Diablo Facebook Page

Diablo Facebook Page – Facebook

Diablo Facebook: Likes for Looks – Diablo INC Gamers

The Diablo Facebook Ransom is Paid: Part I – Diablo INC Gamers

Male Demonhunter – Good To Go!

@Diablo has given us a little update that many have been waiting for quite a few weeks; the male Demon Hunter’s repairs have been completed and the class is ‘pretty much’ ready to go. A fan asked whether we will be waiting another week so he can get a pedicure or a fruit parfait. The answer to that, which was quite entertaining, was the following:

 He has this whole “American Psycho” self-care regiment. It takes a while.

So yes, we know progress has been made and that the class is in fact looking good. Still, though, no word on when we will see the class revealed and obviously no word on what we will be seeing when said reveal is… um… revealed.

Is it possibly that we will be shown the male demon hunter via the new Facebook Like Campaign? Very much so and even more reason to get liking and keep those rewards coming! You can see the full interactions below and keep checking back here for more. Enjoy!

Q: How is the male Demon Hunter coming along in the animations department? – fyayess
A: He’s pretty much ready to go. – @Diablo

Q: Oh how cryptic. I suppose we’ll be waiting another week so he can get a pedicure and a fruit parfait? – Grug
A: He has this whole “American Psycho” self-care regiment. It takes a while. – @Diablo

Male Demon Hunter Ready to Go – Diablo INC Gamers

Bloody_Assassin_by_FotoN_ike

Diablo Fan Art

Yet more crazy cool fan art. This week Diablo INC Gamers and their Fan Art Watch have a look at everything from Assassins to Necromancers. There are quite a few amazingly well done pieces here and as usual they are definitely worth checking out. Also, see my favourite of the lot above, Bloody Assassin by FotoN-ike, enjoy!

Diablo Fan Art Watch #73: From Assassins to Necromancers – Diablo INC Gamers

Diablo Fan Art Watch #74: Weekend Assassins – Diablo INC Gamers

 Also, you can check a couple of cool wallpapers out in the latest Weekly Wallpaper Watch over at Diablo INC Gamers. The most notable of the lot being the female demon hunter one. Enjoy!

Diablo III Weekly Wallpaper #82: Movie Posters, the Sequel – Diablo INC Gamers

Rune Effects On Movement Skills

@Diablo answered yet another question a few days ago regarding runes and how they affect movement skills. They tell us that one rune actually makes teleport an offensive spell allowing it to deal damage where you land, another makes your witchdoctors spiritwalk apply dots to those you walk through and lastly one for the barbarians charge that either increases speed or leaves a trail that damages enemies. I wonder how other skills would be affected, as this rune and skill system seems to be quite deep, and I surely can’t wait to give it a try! Read more about runes and their effects below.

Q: You said that runes are attached to all active skills. Does this mean you can alter teleport and the other mobility skills? – FingolfinGR
A: Indeed you can. One rune makes teleport an offensive spell, dealing damage where you land. – Diablo

Q: What effects (other than damage on impact) do runes have on mobility skills? – FingolfinGR
A: Witch doctor’s Spirit Walk applying DoTs on enemies you move through is a good one. – Diablo

Q: The Barbarian Charge skill- Any rune effects applied to it that you can tell us about? – swordadpt
A: Furious Charge! So cool all by itself. One rune gives a run speed boost after use. Another leaves a trail that damages enemies. – Diablo

Rune Effects Affect Every Skill – Diablo INC Gamers

New Skill Rune Effects Revealed – Diablo INC Gamers

Defense & Combat Changes In Diablo III

Bashiok shared some technical information about how the calculations for hitting and being hit have been changed in Diablo III. A few big changes were made from Diablo I and II, good ones, I think. In the first two games high defense meant enemies had a lower chance to hit you, but, In Diablo III, the defense system is based not on hit avoidance, but on damage reduction, a lot like resistances worked in Diablo II. So that means  heavy armor and high defense doesn’t mean you won’t be hit, it means you’ll take less damage when you are hit. On a side note Diablo INC Gamers explain that shields in Diablo III are also rated on how much damage they can absorb, rather than their ability to vanish 100% of damage any time they block, as was the case in Diablo II. Interesting! Definitely some information you’ll want to remember when kitting out your characters one day. Read more below!

Blue on Defense and Combat Changes in D3 – Diablo INC Gamers

Diablo 3 Smalls

Diablo III Smalls:

Diablo PvP Preview: Devil vs Devil – G4TV

Bill Roper on Hellgate’s Hellish Demise – Diablo INC Gamers

Max Schaefer @ IRB – Diablo INC Gamers

The Dark Library #29 – Diablo INC Gamers

Wiki Watch: Attributes, D3 Team, and Skills – Diablo INC Gamers

What do the Blizzard CMs Do When They Do What They Do? – Diablo INC Gamers

Diablo III Cinematic Introduction: Re-scored – Diablo INC Gamers

The Death of Your Followers (and Attack Rating) – Diablofans

Unlock Diablo II with Hell Unleashed – Diablofans

Questions & Answers:

There were, as usual, a couple if interesting, and today entertaining, questions and answers, too. Let’s check them out!

Q: Excluding the talisman/charms and items, how will we be able to affect our char’s stats/attributes? – Kru5h1
A: Traits are the other big one. Otherwise the only other way would be temporary increases from buffs and such. – Diablo

Q: How many followers do you need to reach before you release the GAME? – simonnelson
A: We’re still working on the system that directly connects Facebook ‘likes’ to the completion of the game. – Diablo

Q: In Diablo will be displayed critical hits in numbers as in WoW? – OF_LiX
A: We have options to show some combat text such as critical hits, if you like. – Diablo

Q: Does it mean that NPC can take damage or even die? – CalamanderRu
A: Many of them, yes. – Diablo

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Beta Rumors

Beta Release Rumors

Ah yes, even more beta release, or reveal, rumors have been floating around recently. Sure, there’s very little reason to believe that these rumors will come true, but hey, we can dream! So a fan recently reminded us that in 2010, during Blizzards fourth quarter report, we actually had the Starcraft II beta announced. That report happened on February the 9th and as you all probably know we are currently fast approaching that date. So sure, this may well just be silly speculation, but it is fun, isn’t it? @Diablo did reply to the fans questions, quite nonchalantly, I might add, but didn’t confirm or deny anything. The guys over at Diablo INC Gamers say we shouldn’t get our hopes up at all and sadly, they’re probably right. So if you want to get sucked into all the theories, speculation and intriuge of guessing when the beta will start I guess you’d better check the posts linked below. I guess you should also just keep checking back here sometime after the 9th to see if it did or didn’t happen!

Lastly in our beta related news, another concerned fan asked @Diablo whether we would be sent an email if we were acceptted into the closed beta. @Diablo replied by saying that it is probably best to just keep an eye on all the official Blizzard sites because they will most definitely announce it there. They also just added that we should all be very weary of Diablo related scam emails.

Q: We lost you for the last few days! Are you preparing something special for us say… for the 9th? – FingolfinGR
A: Why the 9th? – Diablo

Q: Feb 9th, Blizzard 2010 4th quarter report. We are excited about it because last year Mike announced the SC2 beta. – kuangtuscw
A: Ahh, I see. Thanks for clarifying. – Diablo

Q: If someone is accepted into the closed beta will he/she find out via email? – Utjoe09z
A: When/if there is a beta you will know because we’ll announce it on our official sites. Until then be wary of scams. – Diablo

Max Schaefer Talks Torchlight, Diablo 3

Gamasutra has posted a new interview with Torchlight CEO Max Schaefer, and for those that didn’t know he was one of the original creators of Diablo I and Diablo III.  Max does mention Diablo III, and that is, obviously, the reason I mention this. He says that everyone at Runic Games is really looking forward to it and can’t wait to play it when it is finally released. (And no, that wasn’t a hidden jab at the time it is taking to release it, not as far as I know at least) 

The following quote sounds like the same thing many would say: ”We kind of can’t wait for D3 to come out. It’ll delay whatever we’re working on for at least a month when it does! But at the same time we’ve just got to be doing what we’re doing,”

A big focus of the interview was, obviously, the Torchlight series of games and the progress Runic Games is making with them. If you didn’t know they are currently in the process of convering the original Torchlight and setting it up for the Xbox Live Arcade.  There is a great bunch of interesting information in the interview about how they had to pretty much re-do the entire game’s control system and interface to make it work, and feel right, on the Xbox. For us Diablo fans the interview is great for two reasons: Firstly, we are no doubt all waiting for the next installment of Torchlight and, well, playing it on our console might well be fun, too. Secondly, it is great to hear what the difficulties and problems are with making games like this for consoles because, as we all know, Diablo III is set to be released on the consoles too. So whether you’re looking forward to Torchlight on consoles, Torchlight 2 or Diablo III this read will probably get you even more excited, check it out below!

Interview: Runic Games’ Schaefer On Taking Torchlight To XBLA – Gamasutra

@Diablo Talks Health Globes

@Diablo answered a question last week about Health Globes. Does your entire party see it when it drops? The short answer that was pretty much already known by us, is is in fact, yes. But, Diablo INC Gamers took this as a queue to re-introduce a bit of knowledge that we’ve had for quite some time about these most vital of orbs. Get it? Bah. When picked up, health globes actually heal your entire party, their pets and I assume even henchmen. That, obviously, increases their value by quite a bit in the Battle Arena and something tells me players will be timing those spawns as accurately as they can. So if you want to read a little more about Healh Globes, check the Diablowiki page linked below or read the post over at Diablo INC Gamers.

Q: When a health globe drops, the entire party can see it, right? – AcidReign
A: Correct. And they apply to all friendly nearby people, even NPCs. – Diablo

@Diablo on Health Globes – Diablo INC Gamers

Health Globes – Diablowiki

Dyes, Items Matching & Runes

Bashiok recently spoke to a fan in quite a bit of detail about items, the way they look, the way we can customize them, sets and armor dyes. In short Bashiok told us that they don’t want players looking like clowns. Bright colors and totally random looks on gear are not part of what Diablo is. (Yes, let’s leave that to the earlier World of Warcraft expansions) He said that there may well be many colors to dye your armor but they will only change said armor in very measured and specifically tailored ways so that it doesn’t look so garish. Next up he spoke about the fact that you will never be truly unique. Sure, there is a lot of customization and there are a lot of different items, but, in the end, there will be millions of players playing the game and the chances are good that someone out there will have the same class with the same items and / or colors. That’s where dyes, and even runes come in, among other things, to visually distinguish individuals. It would be awesome to have unlimited amounts of art going in to the game, but there has to be a line somewhere. But, hopefully Blizzard can keep that line moving every once in a while though. Lastly, Bashiok was asked how runes can alter your characters appearance. Assuming you’re not standing around just admiring each other you’ll be out and about killing stuff. Since each rune alters each ability in a visual (and usually mechanical) way, even if you and another wizard look exactly alike it’s pretty unlikely you’ll have the same skills chosen, but if you do, you’re even less likely to have the same runes socketed. Good answer if you ask me and now I really can’t wait to get testing with those runes, oh my! So if you want to read those full and fairly interesting interactions, you can do so below. Enjoy!

Blue on Items Matching, Or Not – Diablo INC Gamers

witchdoctor_by_pkyo-d32sh0i

Diablo Fan Art

Because I absolutely love talking about Diablo and everything surrounding it I thought I would just mention that there is a ton of cool fan art up in the latest Fan Art Watch posts over at Diablo INC Gamers. Fan Art Watch #71 has something for nearly everyone, Monks,  Druids,  Witchdoctors,  and Assassins. Fan Art Watch #72, on the other hand, is slightly more focused and gives us a weekends worth of Barbarian fan art. Definitely worth checking out for all you Diablo fans out there. You can also see my favourite of this week above!

Diablo Fan Art Watch #72: Weekend Barbarians – Diablo INC Gamers

Diablo Fan Art Watch #71 Of Monks,  Druids,  Witchdoctors,  and Assassins – Diablo INC Gamers

Diablo III Smalls:

Q: Will players start off with the talisman or is it an articfact item they have to gain like the salvage box? – Scyberdragon
A: You do not start the game with the talisman. – Diablo

Q: Will there be any differences in UI (other than skills/resource) across the five classes? – Jackzor24
A: The inventory paper doll section is different art for every class/gender. It’s fairly simple though, no big differences. – Diablo

Q: Good morning! Any news on the male DH? – DonGuillotine
A: Morning! He’s coming along. – Diablo

Q: So, there is a chance we might see him this month? Strong emphasis on ‘might’. – DonGuillotine
A: Nothing’s impossible. – Diablo

Q: Do you know if we’ll be able to create male and femal toons on diablo 3?—Majoraboy6
A: All classes are available to play as either male or female.—Diablo

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