Asking around the RPS Castle chambers if anyone had anything to add to the news that there were some new Diablo III screenshots (click on the pics), Jim Rossignol immediately ran to the projection whiteboard and thoughtwrote, “there are two Diablo games, but now there is three of it.” This is the reason you visit RPS, and not other sites that apparently persist with existing. But look again, gentles, the inventory system has had a bit of an overhaul.
The latest Blizzcast contains a bundle of new details regarding the third dungeon crawling epic, including more on how the new Rune system will allow you to create far more unique character, with far more unique loot, as well as letting us know about the thinking behind the redesign of the inventory. Bashiok, Blizzard’s community manager, is joined by lead technical artist, Julian Love, and senior artist on UI design, Mike Nicholson.
Last year the inventory had been simplified down to a WoW-type system where all items were one block big. Arms went up, of course, because let’s face it, if they changed the length of the tail on the ‘A’ in the title, there’d be a dedicated forum and furious protests outside Blizzard’s HQ. But I liked the old Tetris inventory, and sure, maybe that makes me some kind of bridge-dwelling freakface who’s feared by the locals, but it was an added element of game. Juggling what I was carrying, weighing up whether I should port back to a shop to ditch a load, or carry on and leave stuff behind. Any how, never mind all that as the new version is a compromise between the two. The inventory is now tabbed, with larger items having their own section of your bulging sacks, another for smaller items, and a third for quest items.
This doesn’t mean bags are going anywhere. Mike Nicholson explains,
“Current design right now is to have bags. You’ll get bags and they will expand, you know kind of like in WoW, except you’re not going to open up separate windows. You’ll start off your inventory with say… you know, eight slots, right, and then you’ll get a new bag and that has ten, so two more slots will open up within that tab, but you’ll never have multiple tabs. Like you won’t have two or three ‘large’ tabs.”