Diablo III Free To WoW “Pass” Subscribers

By Jim Rossignol on October 21st, 2011 at 7:26 pm.


The big news from Blizzcon is starting to pour out of the holes in the internet, and the biggest news is that Diablo III is going to be free to annual World Of Warcraft subscribers. Signing up for the annual pass gets you Diablo III for nowt and new in-game mount for WoW, Tyrael’s Charger. And there we were thinking WoW subs were going to decline. Clever boys.

Check out VG247′s liveblog for loads more.

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69 Comments »

  1. Fenn says:

    I had to register just to say: this is a freaking GENIUS move.

    Blizz just took a lead on being smart cookies….

    • qinqinyiwu says:

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      Welcome to our online store:
      http://mcaf.ee/38si1

    • Perjoss says:

      I do think it’s a good idea, but how does this work for people thinking of picking up the physical expensive edition? Obviously I don’t expect that for free but how about knocking off the RRP for the standard edition from the collectors one. To be honest i will not be touching WoW once D3 is out, but i think its a valid question for all the WoW addicts.

    • Ryan says:

      @Perjoss:

      Buying the LE credits you 4 months of time on your annual subscription. I stil have no plans to go back go WoW but I’m glad that they came up with a plan for the subscribers that want the LE.

  2. Cerzi says:

    I originally read it as “Diablo 3 beta access to WoW “pass” subscribers”, and sighed at the thought of that working disgustingly well.

  3. Legionary says:

    Or in other words, Diablo III is also available as an annual subscription.

    • Vinraith says:

      Yup. More than that, you can safely predict that subscribers will be getting content that regular, one-time purchasers don’t, or what would be the point?

      I thought I smelled the rotten stench of MMO around this game…

    • Maltose says:

      They’re not going to turn it into an MMO. That’d be stupid since they’d just end up cannibalizing WoW subscriptions. If Activision wanted to make Diablo 3 into an MMO, they’d just give it it’s own subscription instead of giving it away for free to hardcore WoW players. What they are trying to do is to get these WoW subscribers to spend money on Diablo 3 microtransactions.

    • Vinraith says:

      @Maltose

      Good point. They’ve got a built in base of millions that are dumb enough to spend $25 on a WoW mount, it’s definitely in their interests to introduce those people to D3′s microtransactions and real-cash auction house.

    • Nevard says:

      Gosh those disgusting people
      It’s almost like they’re in this to make MONEY

    • vatara says:

      No one cares that they want to make money. The concern is about whether they’d rather make money or make a good game.

    • TillEulenspiegel says:

      to introduce those people to D3′s microtransactions and real-cash auction house

      Aaaand there you go.

      1) They don’t want people leaving WoW to play D3.
      2) The marginal cost of each player playing D3 online (ie, the only way possible) for a few hours is negligible. So this costs them a few lost sales, but that’s about it.
      3) People who have less time to play D3 (because they’re also playing WoW) are more likely to buy stuff on the RMT auction house, thus fueling the economy.

      It’s a cunning plan.

    • Wulf says:

      Eh, it’s less “make money” and more “separate idiots from their money” in my books. I’m not going to get into Diablo III for one of the same reasons I won’t get into WoW: It costs too high of a price in both money and the amount of my life it would take up. it’s too expensive, too rich for my blood, so I’ll be avoiding it like the plague.

      Some people might see Torchlight II as the more cheap and cheerful alternative, but that suits me just fine. It means that I won’t have to make an investment of money that would make a banker blush, and I won’t have to make an investment of my very being that would make [insert relevant deity of life/death here] jealous. :P

    • Nevard says:

      I don’t see anything in this news article commenting on the quality of the game, nor in the original comment
      The whole thing was about money

    • psyk says:

      Fuck off with the torchlight advertising

    • Stupoider says:

      Sorry Blizza- I mean Activis- I mean psyk.

    • plspirit says:

      you have to consider, you only need to get the annual pass once, which then is a one time discount on an annual subscription in my opinion
      and not to forget you get beta access for the next wow addon

    • Deano2099 says:

      @vinraith they sold millions of those mounts?! bloody hell.

      But yes, this is smart and a good way to get people to commit to a year of WoW, which I think is the real ‘money-grabbing’ behind it. That is: they know over the next year is when subs start to fall off because they’re reaching the end of the expansion cycle.

    • Vinraith says:

      @Deano

      I don’t know, actually. The statement there was that their base was millions, and a significant proportion of that bought the horse, but I don’t have any final sale figures. Faulty wording on my part, sorry about that.

      http://www.onlinemassivelymultiplayer.com/mmo-news/wow-celestial-steed-sells-over-3-5-million-in-24-hours-hd-gameplay-video/

      I can’t seem to find any kind of current sales figures anywhere, I’d like to know how many they’ve sold now.

    • Ergates_Antius says:

      “What they are trying to do is to get these WoW subscribers to spend money on Diablo 3 microtransactions.”

      You don’t need to assume that level of Machiavellian manipulation.

      It’s more likely they’re simply trying to persuade a bunch of WoW players to sign up for the annual subscription. It’s a effectively giving them a few months free – except it sounds better and costs Blizzard considerably less when you take into account things like the retailers cut and the fact that not all of the people who will take them up on this offer would have bought the game otherwise.

    • unlimitedgiants says:

      Wulf Says:
      > Some people might see Torchlight II as the more cheap
      > and cheerful alternative, but that suits me just fine.

      Only you see it that way. Even the developers of T2 don’t think it’s an alternative. They were griping on Twitter about not getting D3 Beta invites. Then they got them and delayed T2 so they could play the beta.

    • Vinraith says:

      Calling Torchlight 2 a “Diablo 3 alternative” strikes me as very odd, seeing as Torchlight 2 is pretty obviously the superior product. The strings attached to D3 are rapidly getting so numerous and tangled that’s it’s difficult to even see the game beneath.

    • abigbat says:

      @vinraith finally, someone who has had extensive access to both games! It’s great to get a truly informed opinion at last as opposed to making half-baked assumptions based on their personal tastes.

    • Screamer says:

      Vinraith says:
      I thought I smelled the rotten stench of MMO around this game

      This.

  4. tstapp1026 says:

    I’m sorry, but I have to say I would laugh at the fool that ran out to get a pass simply to get D3.
    After 5 years and $900 US in subscription fees I have simply forgotten this game and never wish to see it again. Blizzard’s “hand-in-the-pocket” marketing makes me angry really and I want to punch Nuns to release the pent up rage.

    • Nevard says:

      WoW players get Diablo III and you still get to buy Diablo III
      There is exclusive content that only WoW subcribers get… for WoW. It’s an in-game WoW mount. That doesn’t give you an advantage over other players and isn’t a part of Diablo III.
      What is there to be upset about here?

    • tstapp1026 says:

      I suppose I’m just jaded at myself for spending over $1000 US on a video game, really. I know I know, I can’t fault Blizard, the company, for making money. However I just get angry when I see all the unabashed attempts to suck more people in with a deal that really isn’t a deal. I’m speaking specificaaly from the standpoint that a person does not currently subscribe. It just seems silly to me to rush out and get a year’s worth of WoW @ $150(ish) to get a $60 game and a set of pixels that other pixels can ride in a pixelated environment.

      NUNPUNCH!

    • tstapp1026 says:

      afterthought: then again I can completely see how it WOULD be a deal after thinking on it a moment. $150 annual subscription basically turns into $90 for the entire year after the cost consideration of D3.

      *sigh*

      I’ve defeated myself… and it hurts.

      (I still want to punch a fucking Nun. I want to punch a whole SUNDAY of Nuns!)

    • Urthman says:

      It’s a great deal for someone who actually thinks they’d be wanting to play WoW for another year anyway.

    • Wulf says:

      Ha. This really justifies the comment I made above, thanks for that.

      Me? I’d rather spend sane amounts of time/money on games I like. Most of the WoW players I’ve spoken with don’t sound like they’re really having fun. Just addicted. I suppose the same will be true with DIII, and the money will keep pouring in for Blizzard.

      I’m just happy and smug about the fact that they won’t be getting any of money, and that they’ve had so very little off me compared to most poor fools. And I’ll continue to be loudly proud about that at every opportunity, because maybe then the rest of the world will figure out their game, too. Blizzard is no different than Zynga, at the end of the day they’re more interested in parting you and your money than they are in making a great game.

      That’s been the same ever since Vivendi started the trend of Nu Blizzard, and it’s n ever going to change. Delusions won’t help.

    • Nevard says:

      “I’m happy and proud that I don’t play a game I don’t like”
      Uh ok, I guess we all have to take our happiness from somewhere
      Well done for having an opinion I suppose?

    • Obc says:

      plus MoP beta invite. its an ok deal.

    • Deano2099 says:

      @Wulf – this deal isn’t aimed at those who are addicted. It’s aimed at people like me who play ‘smart’ – I enjoy the game but don’t play it constantly. If I fancy a month of WoW, I play for a month of WoW.

      Whether this is a good deal for me or not is questionable.

    • Ergates_Antius says:

      “Me? I’d rather spend sane amounts of time/money on games I like. Most of the WoW players I’ve spoken with don’t sound like they’re really having fun. Just addicted. I suppose the same will be true with DIII, and the money will keep pouring in for Blizzard.”

      Poppycock.
      WoW & D3 aren’t the only games the people can/will spend an “insane” amount of time playing. I’m certain the same will be true of both GW2 and Torchlight 2.
      Also, given that D3 doesn’t have a subscription, it doesn’t matter how much you play it – Blizzard only get paid once, and the price of it is no higher than most other full games.

      Even if you reject Blizzards claims about the AH that “We expect it’ll break even” it’s clearly not going to make a shit load of cash for them given the small flat rate fees they’ll be charging.

      We get that you hate Blizzard and everything they make, but could at least try to make your arguments against them cogent.

    • unlimitedgiants says:

      Wulf babbled:
      > I’m just happy and smug about the fact that they won’t
      > be getting any of money, and that they’ve had so very
      > little off me compared to most poor fools. And I’ll continue
      > to be loudly proud about that at every opportunity,
      > because maybe then the rest of the world will figure
      > out their game, too.

      1. Play WoW and D3.
      2. ???
      3. Profit!

      Step 2, since case you can’t figure it out, is to make money in the real money auction (RMA) house, to pay for your WoW account.

    • Adjudicator says:

      “I’m just happy and smug about the fact that they won’t be getting any of money, and that they’ve had so very little off me compared to most poor fools. And I’ll continue to be loudly proud about that at every opportunity, because maybe then the rest of the world will figure out their game, too.”

      I, on the other hand, am rather happy and smug about not being an incredibly self-righteous blowhard such as yourself.

  5. Joof says:

    I am going to continue playing WoW, but pay monthly still as an artifact of being unemployed for a while. I was definetly going to buy Diablo 3 on release.

    So what you’re saying is that Blizzard thinks I should pay less money to play WoW and Diablo 3 then I do to play WoW now? I guess I should probably take them up on that.

  6. CommanderZx2 says:

    Some thing I wonder about this, if your sub to WoW ends at the end of that year do you loose access to Diablo 3?

    • Nevard says:

      You have to sign up for this, and it makes your sub un-cancel-able for the 12 months

    • djbriandamage says:

      I wondered this myself so I checked on battle.net. They say that after your 1-year WoW subscription is over, Diablo 3 is still yours to keep forever.

    • Garret says:

      Buy a year’s worth of meth, and we’ll give you some crack for free!
      I’m not serious, but I played WoW for about 4 years, and this is the exact kind of deal that would get me back into the game and playing D3 as well if I had the internet connection to do it. It’s probably better that I don’t, because I can imagine my priorities getting way out of whack all over again.

  7. jacobvandy says:

    It’s kind of neat for WoW players, I guess, if you were going to play the whole year anyway. Bizarrely, this offer is NOT available to new players. They state in the FAQ that you must have had an active subscription in good standing on or before October 18th. So if you were thinking of finally getting around to playing WoW because it’s cheap (by way of free Diablo 3), that ain’t happenin’.

    • djbriandamage says:

      It’s neat for on-and-off WoW players like me who were going to play 4-6 months as well as buying Diablo anyway. I’m guessing the annual subscription will be $140 (since 6-month subs are $77 today), minus $60 for what I’d have paid for Diablo 3 means I get a year of WoW for $80.

  8. Carra says:

    Yes but a yearly subscription is about €140. I can buy me 3 diablos for that money.

  9. Stupoider says:

    You can give money to Blizzard whilst using their real money auction house to make them EVEN MORE money! YOU’LL BE LIVING THE DREAM

  10. Radiant says:

    A new in-game mount.
    And in the game.

    Wait no hold on.

  11. mwoody says:

    And here, finally, we have the (or, at least, another) reason why Diablo 3 has no offline component. The annual pass isn’t pay up-front; rather, you agree to not cancel your subscription for a year. At first, I wondered how they would enforce people not just agreeing to it and then cancelling their credit card now that they had Diablo 3. But with no offline mode, they can cancel your ability to play their game at any time.

    I remember when I didn’t feel dirty playing Blizzard games. *sigh*

    • Sheng-ji says:

      EDIT – OK, you weren’t saying you would do that, apologies for that – Should have read your message properly rather than having a jerking knee moment

  12. caddyB says:

    1- I’ll be playing World of Warcraft for the next year anyway, being happy with it and really liking the ideas for the expansion.

    2- As a guild we’ve decided to cancel our preorders for SW:ToR and stay so there’s no problems there.

    2- I was going to have to buy Diablo 3 at some point as well, my friends will buy it and we will play together.

    3- Now I don’t have to pay for Diablo 3 seperately. Which isn’t such a big deal, but it does free up funds that can be used on some other stuff, I guess.

    It seems like a pretty good deal to me, for me. Probably not for everyone. But I feel it’s a nice gesture for people who would be subbed anyway and those who wouldn’t but have to keep playing because they signed a contract.. well.. it is a genius move on Blizzard’s part. Should think before you sign up or you’ll probably be sorry. But that goes for every move one makes in the great turn based rpg that is life.

    I think most people here miss that you don’t have to pay the annual fee at once, you just commit to being subbed for 12 months. It’s like those ISP or mobile deals you get some discounts for a two year package.

    • mistwolf says:

      Easiest decision I made this year. D3 was a day 1 buy for me. I collect WoW pets and mounts. I am looking forward to the expansion and enjoyed being in the last two betas. I get a mount, a game, and a beta… For paying for something I was going to pay for anyway.

      I turned my account back on for Hallow’s End and so I could chat to some friends during Blizzcon and such. I have been looking for enthusiasm to get back into the game. I now have lots.

      Easy, easy choice. My biggest question is if the game is transferable, only because I also want the D3 CE and would love to give my son D3 base so we could play together.

  13. Thats no moon says:

    Superb!

    Now I have something to play if my internet goes down and I can’t log on to…oh hang on.

  14. Plivesey says:

    I would happily do this – I imagine I’ll be subscribed to WoW for the next 12 months anyway. However, I am wanting the Diablo 3 collector’s edition, so will end up buying it separately!

  15. Ergates_Antius says:

    Reply fail moved…

  16. mmorpg games says:

    smart move, and ppl will fall for it:)

  17. Shooop says:

    Wait, are they saying Diablo 3 will require a paid subscription for many people?

    • Nevard says:

      No

    • mistwolf says:

      No, they are saying that if you commit to a year of WoW you get Diablo 3 free. And a mount and access to the expansion beta.

    • Shooop says:

      @mistwolf:

      So they’re using what originally was a flagship AAA franchise as just a give-away to drum up sales for another one of their games?

      This sends a less than optimistic message about the quality of it.

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  19. BobsLawnService says:

    A I think this is more of a statement about the quality of D3. It’s been relegated from the status of top tier flagship title to WOW incentive item.

  20. promenad says:

    If I still cared about D3 I’d be pissed they reduced it to some freebie side game to that other game they already turned D3 into a light version of.

  21. Sabre_Justice says:

    The stealthiest move to WoW2.

  22. MythArcana says:

    I can fork out $19 and play Torchlight 2 over LAN. Now *that’s* value.

    • Nevard says:

      Or if you’re already a WoW player you can continue playing a game you enjoy, get Diablo III for free and then buy Torchlight as well
      I’d think that’s a pretty good deal.

  23. Kleppy says:

    Am I the only one who still can’t figure out what the post’s title means? Seriously I just read it like 7 times and I still don’t get it.

  24. n0s says:

    Lol, what does it matter when they just announced a goddamn april fools joke as their next expansion…?

    Wow is dead, blizzard had a good thing their marketing and businesspeople ruined. Cause you can bet your ass, this was not a decision made by devs.

    After 7 years in the game, every single person i know plans to quit playing before that panda abomination draws close.

    Seriously blizzard, worlds biggest /facepalm…