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In this episode we take a look at the some contest winners, more Facebook Like updates, some Treasure Seeker information, more art controversy, PvE & PvP Balance, Weapon Types & More!

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In this episode we take a look at Blizzard & Diablo III News — Is Diablo 3 Is Technically Complete? The ditched Ranger Class Concepts, Skill Trees & Tiers, Lots of Art Updates & More!

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Female Monk Costplay

BlizzCon Costume Contest Winner Speaks

The new World of Warcraft Community Site has posted a pretty long email from Christine Estrada, the winner of BlizzCon 2010’s Costume Contest for her portrayal of the female Monk. She talks about her cosplay experience, the crazy World of Warcraft costume she made for last year’s BlizzCon, all the work that went into making the costume and how she applied those lessons to this year’s Monk outfit. It is pretty inspirational and the post includes a bunch of really cool pictures of her costumes and the process of making them. You can read the full email from our lovely female monk below aswell as visit the World of Warcraft site for those photos!

BlizzCon Costumes: Female Monk – World of Warcraft Community Site

Hello to all my fellow gamers out there! My name is Christina, and I portrayed the Diablo III female monk in the BlizzCon 2010 costume contest. Creating and sharing my costuming works with the BlizzCon crowd is always a highlight of my yearly visit to Anaheim. In previous years, I have also portrayed Mother Shahraz from the Black Temple and a paladin in the tier-6.5 Sunwell Plateau set, with both costumes given the honor of being finalists in the costume contest.

Compared to some, I am still a newcomer to cosplay. The Sunwell paladin was my first major costuming endeavor and was mostly made with basic, easy to acquire materials: craft foam, Model Magic, insulation foam, papier-mâché, and paper clay. After doing some research online about cosplay and armor structure, I was able to put together a decent representation of that armor set. My only goal for that year was to create a replica of what my own World of Warcraft character was wearing at the time and to share my passion about Warcraft with others by displaying my creativity and hard work. Sadly, those materials were not made to last, and the costume met its glorious (read: explosive) end after a few more wears.

The Mother Shahraz costume took a very different route from the previous year and involved much more sewing and creative thinking when it came to the arms and helmet. The arms were carved from large blocks of foam and had articulated joints in the elbow and the fingers. This allowed me to run a fishing line between my own arms and the fake ones below so when I lifted my arms, the middle set would lift as well. The fingers had wires running inside so they could grip the swords easily and look passably real. The helmet had about three incarnations before I got it right. The balance and fit had to be pretty spot on, since there were no straps or special rigging to hold it in place. I learned to respect and fear stiff winds while I was wearing Shahraz.

I took what I had learned in years past and applied it to the monk costume, and began the lengthy process of learning about leather crafting. My goals this year were simple: I wanted to be able to sit down in this costume, I wanted it to be as accurate as possible, and I didn’t want the costume to explode after multiple wears. Having only one simple piece of concept art to work off of, I wasn’t expecting it to be as well received as it was. The monk is not wide nor tall, does not glow or have any special effects, and the detailing that was done is hard to see from far away. Lack of grandiosity aside, I worked at the detailing and capturing the look and personality of a strong female warrior and hoped for the best.

Cosplay, to me, is a wonderful hobby that allows you to express yourself and think creatively while showing others how passionate you are about what you are trying to represent. Other cosplayers constantly inspire me to try new things and think in new ways. As long as non-cosplaying people continue to enjoy our efforts and allow us to heighten their BlizzCon experience, cosplayers will continue to delight, scare, and perhaps even inspire others to join us in our creative community.

Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, to everyone at BlizzCon and those who watched from home for your support and kind words.
Christina, BlizzCon 2010 Female Monk

Diablo Mousepad

Steelseries Diablo III Mousepad

Steelseries are continuing their support of all things Blizzard, this time they have unveiled a new and incredibly cool looking Diablo III themed mousepad. Their QcK mousepad has been spiced up with a juicy piece of Barbarian artwork. This is their second Diablo III themed mousepad, with the first being a plain black pad with the Diablo III logo on it. So if you want the amazing performance that Steelseries always provides, combined with the fury of the Diablo III Barbarian, well, then what are you waiting for? Read more about the new Diablo III QcK below.

Steelseries QcK Barbarian Edition – Steelseries

More Console Talk At G-Star

Jay Wilson has apparently been off in Asia doing some Diablo III promotion, and during his interviews he commented on the new Diablo III console hires.  Now while he doesn’t really give much new information or anything like that, it is the first time we actually see one of the Diablo III developers talk about it. He just says that Blizzard is thinking about ways of doing the conversion and about the new developers they are looking to hire. You can, as usual, read the full thing below!

Jay Wilson on D3 Console Plans – Diablo INC Gamers

Tying in with the Diablo III team’s trip to Asia, there are also a couple of new and inevitably interesting shaky cam gameplay videos of the game in action at the G-Star event that just ended in Korea. Check those out below, too!

HQ Ninja Gameplay Footage from Korea – Diablo INC Gamers

Diablo 3 Poker Set

Diablo III Poker Set

After the reveal of the Diablo III themed poker set at BlizzCon this year we didn’t really hear much more about it, till now, that is! The set comes in a rather bulky and pretty shiny carrying case and includes custom poker chips and dice. The best part of the entire thing, though, is the deck of cards, which is totally customized for Diablo III. All of the cards feature concept artwork, there are quotes from the game and the lore and just look really breathtaking. There are some new pieces of concept art on some of the cards and that has, as you can expect, got people talking. So if you want to read about some of the crazy conspiracies and interesting mysteries surrounding this new Diablo III themed poker set, or just want to see it in action, head on over to Diablo INC Gamers below!

Diablo III Poker Set: HQ Images – Diablo INC Gamers

Diablo III Smalls

Diablo III Smalls

Time for the many, many Diablo III smalls of the past couple of days. The Diablo Twitter account is being incredibly active and it is pretty hard to keep up, here we go!

There were a couple of pretty entertaining and pretty nasty interactions between @Diablo and a rather passionate fan, too. Let’s have a look at them!

Q: What about the other resources, Fury and Spirit? Can the generation of those be increased? If not, what does Willpower do? – Grug
A:
Excellent question! One we can’t answer just yet. Base stats are going through some re-scrutinizing at the moment. – Diablo

Q: If you don’t have basic stuff like stats finalized, what have you been doing for the past 2 years? Wasting time? – Grug
A: No need to get nasty. – Diablo

Q: So what HAVE you guys been doing? – Grug
A:
 There’s this game StarCraft II. Not sure if you’ve heard of it. It’s real fun. – Diablo

 Some interesting information about dual weilding, skills, stats and amor!

Q: And, if you let the witch doctor dual-wield daggers!? that would be awesome!!! – 19dgo87
A: Currently only the barbarian and monk can dual wield melee, and only the demon hunter can dual wield ranged. – Diablo

Q: I hope the DH can’t dual-wield two bows. That would be pretty dumb. – Thy_Nemesis
A: Not bows, crossbows. – Diablo

Q: I dont want to use one of my 7 skills to grab a mobility skill, will I be gimped,less useful or cant get to hidden treasure if I dont? – illthegreat
A: Those are the choices that make builds interesting. You won’t be purposefully gimped if you don’t, though. No. – Diablo

The maximum skill level in Diablo III is 20.

Q: So, to sum it up (kinda lost here) : what are pricesely the way(s) to alter/customise the base stats (strength etc) at the moment ? – nitwoo
A: Gems, Charms, and to some extent Enchants, Traits, and Items, although they generally enhance specific subsets of the base stats. – Diablo

Apparently there should be some thought involved when picking your armor. The decision comes in if you like the stats on the new item better than what you’re wearing.

Weapons won’t be as customizable, in looks at least, as armor will be in Diablo III.

And then some other seemingly random pieces.

Q: I’ve been thinking a lot about this recently, we haven’t seen any new changes on Tyrael’s wings in the main web, any plans? – kromdaral
A: Why would we change them? – Diablo

Q: I noticed there is no mouse cursors in the PvP footage from the video released at blizzcon, why is that? is that ingame option – Nielsdue
A: When we turn off the UI to capture footage the mouse cursor goes with it. – Diablo

As usual, this news was brought to you by Diablo INC Gamers and Diablofans with the help of the Diablo Twitter Account!

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Starcraft Pulse

Pulse 25 is here! 😀 Only Warcraft and Diablo News for all of you today, never fear though, the Starcraft News will be back early next week! I guess there was a lot happening anyway seeing that this episode got to 14 minutes long! O_o

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Male Barbarian

Male Barbarian Armor Set Preview

Here we go, the last gear preview. Today, the male barbarian, thirsting for demon-punching. Next stop, BlizzCon!

Tuesday has come and gone and with it came the last armor set preview from Blizzard. This one, as you all probably knew, was of the male Barbarian. He does look rather mean in the picture and Blizzard has let us know that he is not in fact wearing the same set as the female Barbarian is in her preview.

Q: Is the Male Barb armor set the same like the set of the female Barb except the helmet ?

A: No, different sets

Interesting stuff! Now let’s hope we get something a lot more exciting and most definitely a lot more informative from BlizzCon this year. You can find all the previews from the last couple of weeks listed below!

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!

Diablo 3 Fifth Class

Fifth Class, Archer, Rogue?

There has been a ton of speculation about that one last class that Blizzard has kept so secret for so long. Many think, myself included, I must add, that Blizzard would have to add at least one class that specializes in bows or crossbows. I mean, would any game, any RPG be complete, without the standard Archer or Rogue type class? Sure, they could add something else and let a few of the classes just use those ranged weapons anyway, but that wouldn’t be the same.

Diablo INC Gamers has an interesting poll running at the moment about what the fifth class is. If you’re at all, even the slightest bit interested in what others think and what your options are, you should probably check it out.

Vote: The Fifth Character: Archer or Not? – Diablo INC Gamers

Bashiok even joked about it when a fan asked if the fifth class would be a Rogue by saying “Everyone knows the fifth class is…”

Yeah, that’s it. That’s all he said and that’s where he stopped. Sad times!

Unique To Legendary

A fan recently asked Bashiok why Unique items are now called Legendary items in Diablo III. He got a bit of explanation from Bashiok but, those WoW haters amongst you will probably not want to hear it. In short he explains that the ‘unique’ term or class of item in Diablo II was not really true to the word unique. He says the way that unique items are set up in WoW makes much more sense because it means that your character can only ever have one of that item, instead of it meaning that the item can only drop once per game. He goes on to say that changing unique to legendary just makes more sense. If an item is legendary it could still be unique, though, but he does say that they wouldn’t want to restrict you from dual wielding that awesome legendary, should you find a second one, or maybe they will, possibly.

I guess if you want to make sense of it, or just read the rest of the interactions you can find them all below.

Q: Why else would they rename the Unique items to Legendary?
A: Unique items in Diablo II were only “unique” in that only one of them would drop per-game. Using the term “unique” to describe them implies many things, none of which are likely to be true.

World of Warcraft uses the word a bit more intelligently in that it is indeed unique in that your character can only ever have one of them.

Q: Because they will be using the same “Unique” setup that WoW uses
A: We have no plans to have such a system.

World of Warcraft uses unique and unique equipped for character balance, so that the designers know what items a character can have equipped at any one time. Balance is important to us, but probably not to the same degree that we would want to restrict use of dual-wielding two of some awesome legendary sword. For instance.

I guess I would probably follow that up with the usual, ‘but nothing is set in stone’. I guess if we were to hit a point where dual wielding the most awesome sword in the game completely broke everything, we’d have to do something like unique-equipped.

But even then, you could still find them, pick them up, and trade them off… so I’m not even sure how unique-equipped kills hoarding.

Q: Wouldn’t you just nerf the sword?

A: I don’t know. Maybe? But maybe we like the sword being as awesome as it is. Maybe nerfing it means we have to make some awesome proc completely stupid and not fun. Or we can go *poof* unique-equipped and it’ll still cause enemies to explode, which have a chance to cause the enemies they exploded on explode themselves, in a chain reaction, and the number of explosions increases movement speed by 5%!? HUH!? Bet you didn’t think about the awesome explosion-run speed proc this sword has, did you?

Blue: Unique to Legendary – Diablo INC Gamers

Killing Sprees

Killing Sprees In Diablo III

Diablo INC Gamers reports that a fan, a rather obsessive fan, I must add, has been rewatching BlizzCon 2008 Diablo III footage. He noticed that in the gameplay video the Witch Doctor only levels up a good second or two after the fight he was in ended. Needless to say, he brought it up on the Battle.net forums and in no time at all received an answer to his queries. He was told that if you kill several enemies in rapid succession, or kill several enemies with one attack, you will gain bonus xp. The game takes a few seconds for the ‘combo‘ that you are busy with to end and hey, presto, you get your experience. That’s pretty cool, I definitely can’t wait to get my very own killing sprees started. You can read more about that below!

Q: You gain bonus xp when you kill several enemies in rapid succession, or kill several enemies with one attack. It was probably the former, which would wait for a few seconds to see if you killed any more demons before granting the XP.

A: This is very likely the explanation. It seems about the right amount of time before the combo XP is awarded.

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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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A few screenshots that I had not yet uploaded that were included in the GamesCom 2010 Presskit. Enjoy the Barbarian in the first Act of Diablo III! (Click for full size)

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