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Posts Tagged ‘3’

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

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

witchdoctor-poisondart

demonhunter-boloshot 

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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lighting

Lighting Effects In Act II

A keen sensed, sharp-eyed and totally obsessed fan recently compared two screenshots from the same location in Act II, pointing out that there was in fact a difference in the lighting. He proceeded to ask Bashiok what was cracking with that, and, Bashiok responded. He said that it could be due to a great many things including non-final lighting in a screenshot from an earlier build, a strong sand storm effect in the screenshot or a couple of others. But in shot he says that the witchdoctor one, which is darker, looks ‘wrong’ to him, so his gut reaction would be to say it was taken before a final lighting pass happened on that area. Aww, no fancy new lighting effects for us! Oh well, personally I think the game looks amazing enough for me, no matter the lighting!

Night Lighting in Act II? – Diablo INC Gamers

No NDA For Diablo III Beta

Good news everyone! It seems like, come the Diablo III closed beta, we won’t be seeing that pesky Non-Disclosure Agreement, in fact, we won’t be seeing it ever again. A fan recently asked about the NDA and whether Blizzard would have anything in place for Diablo III’s beta. Bashiok was quick to reply and said that he doesn’t believe that they’re planning to impose NDA’s on future beta tests for any of their franchises. That’s of course subject to change, though. Yeah, that is indeed good news. If the beta would just start now….

No NDA for the Diablo III Beta? – Diablo INC Gamers

Disintegrate

Wizard’s Disintegrate Is Too Powerful?

A fan made a pretty long post about how the Wizard’s Disintegrate skill is flawed, and yes, you guessed right, this fan has never actually played the game or in fact used the skill. He went on many tangents, but, his main point was that the laser beam moves too quickly, allowing the Wizard to hit anything on the screen in an instant. Bashiok was, as usual, on the job. He replied by saying that he hasn’t had any problems countering it and that the arena maps have a bit of LoS just for that reason. Also, he says that if you don’t have some kind of mobility skill, well then you’re probably doing it wrong. Lastly it requires constant use of Disintegrate to build up to full power (damage) and a wizard sitting still for that long is just asking for it. His response contained all that and a lot more in defence of the amazing looking skill. So if you are already set on playing the Wizard class and need to know all there is to know right now before it actually matters that much, well then, what are you waiting for?

Wizard’s Disintegrate: Too Fast for Love? – INC Gamers

Diablo’s Evolving Lore

Just recently a fan asked about the similarities, or differences, between the official Diablo novels and the games themselves. He got a response from Bashiok wherein he said that the Sin War trilogy was really the beginning of what is now considered canon for the lore of the series. While the previous books certainly have a lot of great stories, information, and even bits and pieces that may indeed hold true in the series as it is now, they aren’t held as canon and thus the events in them may not always hold true moving forward. He also pointed out a specific question that was asked a while back concerning the map of Diablo III and how there were actually differences between it and the books that were still to be corrected. So yeah, if any of you are interested in the lore behind the books and games and its evolution, I guess the post linked below is one you’ll want to read.

Diablo’s Evolving Historical Canon – INC Gamers

Diablo 3 Smalls

Diablo III Smalls

In the smalls this week we are treated with a rather cryptic clue from Bashiok about the possibility of Tristram perhaps maybe being a zombietown.

Tristram A Zombietown? – Diablo INC Gamers

A fan asked how much control we would have over our pets in Diablo III. The response he got was, well, there’s no direct control but there is more to it than just resummoning the pet when it dies.

Blue on Diablo 3 Pet Control – Diablo INC Gamers

A couple of extremely early models that may or may not have been developed for Diablo III have been revealed. They are, as you can expect, nothing special, as they were actually made waay back in 2003. See them and read more about them below, if you’re interested.

The Earliest Diablo III Monsters, Revealed – Diablo INC Gamers

The Diablo Twitter recently teased about a new Demon Hunter Skill saying the following – “The Demon Hunter is getting a few new toys. One of the coolest has to be the Sentry.” By the name it does sound like a trap type skill, I guess we will just have to wait and see!

New Demon Hunter Skill: Sentry – Diablo INC Gamers

@Diablo also let us know today that a skill we have never actually seen before has had its graphics updated, hooray!

Never-seen Skill Has Improved Graphics – Diablo INC Gamers

More Ninja Footage

Last week I spoke about and showed a piece of ninja gameplay footage of Diablo III arena play from BlizzCon last year. The author of it, Redalb, has now uploaded another, also pretty long, ninja-recorded video of his PvP / Battle Arena play from last year’s Blizzcon. This second video seems a lot better than the first. It seems like he was able to hold his hidden camera a little easier and, well, he focuses on a few more interesting parts of what’s happening. So, if you’re into seeing as much as you possibly can about Diablo III, then I guess this one is most definitely for you. Check it out above or below!

15 More Minutes of Arena Ninja-Cam from Blizzcon – Diablo INC Gamers

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Blizzard Holiday Contests

Blizzard Holiday Contests

There’s a tradition at Blizzard Entertainment of creating a very special holiday treat each year to share the warmth of the season, but with a uniquely Blizzard touch. Blizzard are inviting you to help them spread the holiday cheer this year by entering their annual Holiday Card and Holiday Desert Contests! Do you want to learn more and prepare your entries? Check the links below!

Blizzard Holiday Contests – Blizzard Entertainment

There’s a tradition at Blizzard Entertainment of creating a very special holiday treat each year to share the warmth of the season, but with a uniquely Blizzard touch. We invite you to help us spread the holiday cheer this year by entering our second annual Blizzard Holiday Card Contest or our Blizzard Holiday Dessert Contest. You can win great prizes from Razer as well as special autographed copies of Blizzard titles by crafting a Blizzard themed holiday card or dessert. Want to learn more? Pack your creativity and visit the contest pages

Blizzard Holiday Card Contest

Blizzard Holiday Dessert Contest 

BlizzCast 15 Now Available

The latest episode of BlizzCast is now live! This latest episode is a Cataclysm feature that covers all the big changes and additions coming up with the release of the expansion next week! So if you want to give that a listen you can find all the relevant information below.

BlizzCast 15 Now Available – World of Warcraft Community Site

BlizzCast 15 is now live! In this episode, we bring you in-depth coverage of the upcoming Cataclysm expansion and discuss everything from world creation to class changes to sound design.

In our first segment, we discuss world-building with World of Warcraft Lead World Designer Alex Afrasiabi and Lead Content Designer Cory Stockton. For our second segment, we delve into music and sound design with Composer and Director of Audio Russell Brower and Senior Composer of Music and Sound Derek Duke. Our third segment focuses on the voice acting in Cataclysm with Producer of Casting and Talent Relations Andrea Toyias. Last, but certainly not least, we sit down with World of Warcraft Lead Systems Designer Greg Street to discuss the class and systems changes in Cataclysm.

Head over to the BlizzCast page to listen now, or download it from iTunes.

Blizzard Leaked ScheduleClick for full size!

Leaked Blizzard Product Schedule

A very interesting image is circulating the net right now, this image is a supposed leak of Blizzard’s Product Schedule for the next couple of years. So you can find the image below and let me know what all of you think. There’s a lot of interesting stuff on it including Battle.net 2.0 Information, Starcraft II Expansion release dates along with a curious Starcraft title only known as Starcraft 2: Phoenix. There’s also World of Warcraft stuff on there including predicted release dates for everything up to the fifth expansion. Then, Diablo III and its two expansions. Yes, apparently we will be seeing two expansions for Diablo III! Then, lastly, the World of Warcraft Movie is on there along with a name we don’t know much about, Titan. This is obviously their rumored, unannounced MMO which is also rumored to be an FPS. Woah, so much information.

Blizzard did in fact respond to the leaked image directly and said that they appreciate the interest in their current and upcoming games but right now they don’t have any new announcements to make and they are fully focused on their December 7 release of Cataclysm. Interesting! Check the image out and read the full Blizzard quote below. While these are just rumors right now some sites have actually gone as far as to say that they believe them to be true. Read their opinions below, too.

Blizzard Product Schedule: Leak or Hoax? – Wowhead

Blizzard Product Slate – MMO-Champion

As always, we appreciate the interest in Blizzard’s current and upcoming games, but we don’t comment on rumors or speculation and we don’t have any new announcements to make. Right now we’re fully focused on the upcoming launch of World of Warcraft: Cataclysm, and we’re very much looking forward to celebrating that event with players around the world starting on Dec. 7.
Blizzard Entertainment

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Diablo Twitter Is Back

@Diablo is back!

Good news everyone! The Diablo Twitter Account is back to its usual nonsense and foolishness. After a post-BlizzCon break it has finally returned with some general chit-chat, and a few tweets with game info as well. Let is celebrate the return with a couple of questions and answers, courtesy of Diablo INC Gamers.

Q: will we get a skill point at level 1? – Grug

A: No, or at least the current plan is that you get one at level 2 and beyond. 59 points. Potential for more to be awarded elsewhere. – Diablo

Q: I am curious but how can you manage a team with different level in a same group, difficulty can be different from a level to another.. – Clockmodders

A: Difficulty currently increases based on number of players, not their levels. – Diablo

Q: will you include the old numpad commands? “time to die”, “this is for you”, “follow me” etc? – mrasifzahoor

A: No plans currently. Fully integrated voice chat, as it exists in the new Battle.net platform, seems more useful. –Diablo

Q: If that’s the case, maybe you could award 2 skill points at level 60, so players have a nice round number to work with.—Grug

A: Our intent would be to have enough skill points to encourage diverse and fun character builds, not nice round numbers. —Diablo

Q: Will you be able to see other players in the game world such as in WoW? and if so, Will you be able to party up to take on content?—WarukJenkins

A: It’s a four player co-op game, so, not really (in the way that you mean it) to the first part, and yes to the second. – Diablo
Q: Will we always be able to swap runes around to different skills at no cost? – yovargas
A: That’s the idea right now, but there will likely be limitations on when or where you can swap them. – Diablo

Q: How would runes be taken out of the economy?—DrHighlen

A: They can be salvaged, which may be enough, but it’s a question we’re still asking ourselves. – Diablo

Q: Do you require game testers that are willing to die before they leak any information by any chance? – Rezoken

A: Well yes, but it’s a guarantee anyway due to the brain chip. – Diablo

Thanks again to Diablo INC Gamers for being so quick to get these all up, you should really check their site out, right now! 😀

Diablo INC Gamers

Battle.net Article / Interview With Greg Canessa

Gamasutra has posted a rather long interview with Blizzard man Greg Canessa. The article is not specific to Diablo III, but there is some very interesting information about the development and future goals of Battle.net. So if anything, I think that does actually involve our beloved Diablo III. They basically just talk about how they want to make sure that Diablo III has a ‘kick-ass online experience’. That sounds like a good goal to me, you can check the entire interview below.

 Battle.net Article and Interview with Greg Canessa – Diablo INC Gamers

Physics In D3

Blizzard Talks Physics

Blizzard recently answered a few questions regarding the physics and physics engine used in Diablo III. Apparently they are no longer, and have not been for quite some time, using the Havok Engine. Blizzard says they are now using an in-house system instead, which they feel does the job better than any other could. They say the reasoning behind using their own ‘stuff’ is because that way they are not limited in any way at all, they can change it and improve it at will, without needing anyone elses permission. So if you are interested in that slightly more technical side of things, you can read the full interactions below.

I have no additional comment on whips, but thought this was a good place to mention that the game hasn’t used Havok for physics for quite some time. We use an in-house custom physics engine now.

Q: A lot of the destructibles shown in the crafting sanctuary videos looked like they weren’t using physics but pre-animated, static kinds of things.

A: Well that’s a compliment in and of itself!

Destructibles are still physics based. The bits that they break up into are hand crafted, and in many cases the way they destruct is hand crafted (knock out the supports of a wall and the pieces are shoved in a specific direction), but the bits of stuff and how they move is all handled by the physics engine.

Q: So, what was the reason behind not using Havok?

A: We like making all our own stuff. I’m not sure if there were any limitations or anything that forced us to, it’s just preferable to have internally produced and controlled tools. And I’m sure licensing Havok ain’t free.

BlizzCon Interviews And Other Articles

There were, as you may already know, a ton of interesting and pretty informative interviews at BlizzCon regarding Diablo III. Now while it will probably take too long to totally summarise them all here I think it would probably work out better if I just point you in the right direction. Besides, who want to hear news from a couple of weeks ago anyway, huh? So check below for a couple of interesting interviews and pieces.

Blizzcon 2010 Interview: Christian Lichtner and Jason Bender – The Escapist  

BlizzCon 2010 Hands-On – GamePlanet NZ

Mega Diablo 3 PvP Arena Report – Diablo INC Gamers

GamePro Magazine Profiles Diablo III – Diablo INC Gamers

Monk Spirit

Gaining Spirit With A Monk

A fan recently asked a few questions regarding the Monk class’ spirit and whether or not basic attacks produce spirit for the monk. Yes,  they do, but… apparently once you get a combo skill (On level 4) there is no need to use basic attack ever again. So I guess that is an interesting little titbit. In the same couple of questions it was also revealed that Monks can in fact use Polearms, similar to those of the Diablo II Amazon.

Q: …whether or not basic attacks produce spirit for the monk.

A: Yes.

But, once you get a combo skill (level 4) I don’t think there’s any need to use a basic attack again.

Q: Shapeshifting Dark Javelin Psychic Metalbender of Death

A: Monk can use spears.

Q: Ah, so they can be ranged by using throwing spear(s). Unless… you’re talking about the long “pokey spears,” like the War Pikes of D2.

A: Pokey spears.

You can also see the spirit attack charging below, the example used is the Hands of Lightning skill. Thanks to the Diablowiki for that!

800px-Lightning-fists-sequence1Click for larger image!

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Diablo III Logo

Diablo III

Let’s start with what has got to be the most exciting part of BlizzCon 2010, the Diablo III news! I mean, if you can tell me about one Blizzard fan out there, and yes, we’re all Blizzard fans, that is in fact not waiting for this game and praying that it would be here sooner, then I shall salute you.

Demon Hunter Diablo 3

The Demon Hunter

“She emerged from the shadows cast by the setting sun and wasted no time in dispatching the rest of my attackers. Her hands worked twin crossbows, launching a glowing arc of flaming bolts over my head, blanketing the hulking monsters.”
The Demon Hunter

To many the biggest announcement, albeit an expected one, was probably the fifth and final class in Diablo III, the Demon Hunter. The Demon Hunter is Conventional Ranged and makes use of Gadgets, Traps and Shadow Magic. She is meant to be dark, mysterious, medieval, sexy and angry, lots of attitude. You learn more about the exciting new Demon Hunter class below!

The Demon Hunter – Diablo III Official Site

Diablo III Beta Keys

To some the most exciting announcement of the whole weekend and to others something that just evokes feelings of sadness and jealousy. During the closing ceremony of BlizzCon 2010 Paul Sams said that 1000 lucky BlizzCon attendees would receive Diablo III beta keys.

Now while there may not be a date set for any of this it still leads me to believe that we are steadily approaching the beta release date. I will go out on a limb here and say that I expect the beta to go live near the end of December or sometime in early January. Nevertheless, it was huge news and I congratulate each and every one of the people that got their hands on a beta key, kudos!

Battle Arenas

PvP And Battle Arenas

You batter the last of the Fallen into a bloody puddle, and it’s just you and your friends left on the battlefield. You’re congratulating them as you dig through towering piles of loot. Everyone’s smiling.

But, inwardly, you’re thinking: “I could take you.”

Is that what they’re thinking too?
PvP

Over this past weekend of BlizzCon, PvP in Diablo III has expanded by leaps and bounds. Diablo III’s PvP battles are set to be fought in arenas spread out across the world of Sanctuary. These arenas aren’t random — they’re all unique, designed with differing amounts of terrain and cover. You participate in PvP using the character of your choice, with access to all of the gear and skills you’ve accumulated playing the game in single-player or cooperative mode. These arenas are focused on team play and the build of your class is set to play a big role in how well you actually do in them. They are to be played in rounds, either best of 3, or best of 5, or something else to that effect. You can read all about Diablo III’s cool looking PvP system below!

PvP – Diablo III Official Site

Cataclysm Logo

World of Warcraft: Cataclysm

There wasn’t really much new announced for Cataclysm at BlizzCon, but really, what could we expect from it? The game is set to launch is just over a month, there’s very little that we don’t know. Blizzard did manage to have a few surprises ready for us fans, though.

Cataclysm Login Screen

Yes, a login screen is a big deal. We are going to be seeing this moving picture every time we log in and every time we time out. It’s a big deal. Lucky for us Blizzard definitely got us covered for eye candy! The new Cataclysm Login screen that was revealed during the World of Warcraft Art Panel at BlizzCon this past weekend is definitely worthy. I mean, who doesn’t want to see Deathwing’s huge molten lava claws crushing the two towers at the entrance of Stormwind every time they log in? You can see the new login screen below and don’t hesitate to tell me what you think.

Worgen Starting Area Cinematic

During the World of Warcraft Cinematic panel at this past weekends BlizzCon we were shown the new Worgen Starting Area Cinematic, which featured a rather sinister looking Lord Godfrey. This, if you were wondering, is the video that plays after completing the very start of the Worgen areas. So you’ll see this around level 5 or 6. It’s very cool and you can check it out below!

SC2 Logo

Starcraft II

Who could forget Starcraft II? There were a few interesting Starcraft II reveals and I guess for those hardcore Starcrafters out there some of them are pretty great.

Blizzard Dota

New Custom Maps

A few all new Official Blizzard Custom Maps were announced during the Starcraft II Custom Maps and Editor Panel. Left 2 Die, Aiur Chef, Starjeweled and Blizzard DOTA are all set to hit the Battle.net servers soon. I am not going to go into much detail about these map right here, though, if you’re interested you can find a link to them below!

StarCraft II Custom Maps and Editor Panel – Starcraft II Official Site

I will say that they do look really cool and, well, if Blizzard puts enough time and effort into them, especially Blizzard Dota, I have no doubt that it will be amaizng. I also have no doubt that it will destroy the competition, yes, I just said that.

Master and Grand Master Leagues

During the Secrets of the Masters Panel for Starcraft II two new leagues were announced. The Master League will place roughly the top 5% of Diamond players in their own league, and the Grandmaster League, a very special, elite league which is comprised of the top 200 players in each gameplay region. Both leagues will be visible to other players. Now that is pretty exciting. I hope everyone is keen for this and practicing hard to get ready for these!

HotS Concept

Heart of the Swarm Concept Art

Blizzard said going into BlizzCon this year that they would not be talking about, or showing off, Heart of the Swarm at all. Lucky for us that wasn’t all true! During the Starcraft II Art panel we got a few, world exclusive, looks at some concept art from the upcoming expansion. While I won’t be showing it to you right here, you can feel free to check it out over at a nice little post GosuGamers has set up, in the links below.

First Potential look at HotS – GosuGamers

BlizzCon Winners

The BlizzCon 2010 Winners

Finally, this is just a quick look at who won at BlizzCon 2010 this year!

Starcraft II

  • First Place: NEXGenius
  • Second Place: Loner
  • Third Place: Duckload-Ra

Warcraft III

  • First Place: Remind
  • Second Place: Infi
  • Third Place: Moon

World of Warcraft

  • First Place: *aAa*
  • Second Place: Complexity Red
  • Third Place: LightZ Camera Action

Fan Art

Movie  

Original Song

If you’re looking for a more indepth recounting of what happened at BlizzCon I suggest you check the Day 1 and 2 Recap Videos on YouTube, you can find them in the post linked below!

BlizzCon 2010 – Recap Videos – Mitarn

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Diablo 3 Logo

Another week of Diablo III news, oh how these little titbits get to me. There are quite a few smaller pieces of news, as there always seem to be, this week. The biggest and probably most entertaining piece of news is no doubt the new armor set preview that Blizzard released, read more about that below!

Female Wizard In Plate Mail

As Blizzard mentioned last week they are going to be releasing a couple of armor set previews between now and BlizzCon 2010. The second of those previews is now up with the third coming on Thursday. Read more about and see the picture of the Female Wizard’s set preview below!

Female Wizard Plate Mail

Our armor preview continues today with a behind-the-scenes look at the female wizard sporting a red plate mail set. And keep in mind if you don’t happen to like that shade of red, it can drop in any number of colors, or be customized to your liking through the dye system. Thursday we’ll be previewing a set worn by the female barbarian, so check back.

You can find the full preview schedule below with all the previous and upcoming entries dated! 😀

Every Tuesday and Thursday leading up to BlizzCon on October 22 we’ll be sharing a behing-the-scenes sneak peek at a gear set that will be featured in the playable demo at the event. Please enjoy!
9/30 Male witch doctor – here
10/5 Female wizard – here
10/7 Female barbarian – Coming Soon!
10/12 Female witch doctor – Coming Soon!
10/14 Male wizard – Coming Soon!
10/19 Male barbarian – Coming Soon!

Barbarian’s Fury Resource Decay

Bashiok recently jumped into a conversation on the Battle.net forums and replied to a question about the rate of the Barbarian’s Fury decay with an overview on resource system design. So some of the information we may have heard before but he did let us know that the Barbarian will have a couple of lower level skills that don’t cost fury at all, so you won’t be stuck with nothing but auto attacks when you engage in battle, that’s a good thing! You can read the full quote below.

Q: With fury now a meter instead of a Stoplight, I got to thinking about the Barbarian’s viability in PvP and against solo monsters. I suggest that while the current system of “hit to build up fury, decays if not used” be kept, there should be a threshold of rage that will not decay unless used. For example, a Barbarian’s fury will not decay below 10 points, but it can still be used and if used, must be replenished normally. It would allow some more options while starting a fight other than “basic attack”, and the threshold is another stat that could be tweaked for specific builds.

Your fury could also be restored to its threshold limit whenever a healing NPC is visited, to avoid players beating up weak creatures to store some fury.

A: There are only so many ways to make a resource system before they start becoming overly complicated, confusing, annoying, esoteric, or maybe even just meaningless. We know. We’ve been through many skill system revisions and continue to be in the midst of them. None of the ones put into practice wildly flared in any of the aforementioned directions, but even minor tweaks to established concepts can have an enormous effect.

There’s a reason why a few basic resource system concepts have existed since the beginning of game-time, and permeate game after game after game.

ANYWAY, we’ve tried a lot of things regarding fury build up and decay. I think we’ve hit a good place of mixing what skills can be used whenever, what skills have cool downs, what skills require fury, and what skills require fury and have a cool down. At least a good place where more play testing is needed. And of course there’s all the different ways to affect fury gen/decay. Of course!
Bashiok, Blizzard Entertainment (Source)

How Awesome Is The New Skill And Talent System?

A topic that is often spoken about on the Battle.net forums is the skill system and the skill or talent trees in Diablo III. Now while we don’t get much new information here, we do at least get the confirmation that it is in fact really, really awesome. That’s good, isn’t it ? 😀 See the full interaction below!

Q: OK so I’m lvl 60, i have completed every skill quest what % of the skill tree will be filled. because if you have 20 passive/ active skills per tree and each goes to 15 normal/nightmare/hell, it just seems like the skill trees would feel very empty. hopefully someone here can elaborate on this subject for me.

A: The new skill system is pretty awesome. The first time I saw it I knew it fit. Of course I’ll look like a fool if we change it again, but I think we found something that fits the game really well. It’s actually not too far off from the tiered approach we had shown before, but a few important differences really make it something different and awesome
Bashiok, Blizzard Entertainment (Source)

Diablo III Twitter Smalls

Diablo III Twitter Smalls

Ah the twitter smalls. Sadly there are only a couple to look at today, but at least there’s something, enjoy!

Q: Will we be in one zone (IE forest, desert) for an entire Act (not counting dungeons of course) or will we move around more? – TheEliminator

A: The acts are certainly themed as they’re in specific locations, but there’s a lot of visual variety within them.Diablo

Themed Acts? Who would have guessed it! I really have to say that I can’t see it any other way. That is just how Diablo should work. It’s a great feeling when you head into a new act and it’s all so totally different so suddenly. I can’t wait to see what all the acts look like and it’s great to hear there will also be a lot of variety in each act.

Q: Is this going to be the same armor set just on each gender? – TheEliminator

A: Each armor look is unique to each class, so even if it was the exact same items, they’d look different.Diablo

Interesting answer there by the Diablo Twitter… It doesn’t quite answer the question. From previous screenshots we have seen, though, it does look like the armor will look pretty similiar. There will be small changes to allow for the different boy shapes and stuff like that. So I guess that’s the question answered anyway!

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