Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls Announced


There is a siren on my desk that I keep in pristine condition. Every night I polish and clean the surfaces and check the wiring before heading to bed with a satisfied sigh. Its purpose is simple: whenever Blizzard release a new cinematic, it alerts me to this fact. Me and most of the neighbourhood. About an hour ago it went off again, as the legendary developer officially announced the new Diablo 3 expansion at gamescom. All the details and that unparalleled talent for beauty in the deeps below.

They could sell me dog mess in a box with production like that. Some might say they already did.

So what’s new in the somewhat controversial RPG? Basically: everything. There’s a level cap upgrade to 70, adding new skills and runes to existing classes. To get you there is the whole new act, centered around the region of Westmarch, a gothic-inspired fallen city. Within which you’ll find new enemies, upgraded loot and an entire new character class, the Crusader, based around the Diablo 2 (and everything else) Paladin. Check him and his home out below.

The endgame is the focus of mechanical changes this go round. Complaints from the community are that it is a dull grind fest with little support, even after attempts were made to lengthen interest. Now they’re taking a new route, foregoing the BILLIONS OF DROPS mentality in favour of lesser numbers, but attempting to use fancy algorithms to tailor what’s received to your character. In addition, enchanting makes a return, allowing unwanted affixes to be altered on otherwise useful items. There are also new “Loot Runs”, entirely randomised 15-20 minute dungeons that are designed to maximise both fun and goods received. Meanwhile, the Paragon system is being altered to be less grindy, but also have no cap, allowing infinite progression for those who want it.

That teaser site will likely get an upgrade soon, so keep an eye on it for more details.


  1. Screamer says:

    Yay! …. oh wait it still always online…. f*%ck off Blizzard!

    Oh and shouldn’t it be called Auction House: Reaper of player Coin

    • Seiniyta says:

      Kind of a childish comment no? You can play D3 perfectly fine without the use of an AH at a reasonal pace. You can beat inferno mode without any AH gear whatshowever.

      • Steven Hutton says:

        I don’t agree with the phrasing of the complaint but it’s pretty obvious from even moderate amount of play that Blizard were more interested in making money from the RMA than they were in making a good, satisfying game.

      • Bremze says:

        Seiniyta, I’ll be cut it short, how much are you being paid and where do I sign up?

        • Seiniyta says:

          I’d love to be paid but alas I’m not ;). Aside the millions of Brittish sterling pounds I’ve amassed during my time in D3.

          Look, D3 was at launch a disaster, but they changed a lot in the meantime. A LOT. Iis it perfect? No. The story is still really weak, the game still needs more randomization and better loot. But as it stands it’s a fairly enjoyable game.

          • Borsook says:

            Any game I’d like to play in SP that requires me to be connected to their server to do so is no go. Sorry it’s too absurd. I’d rather play Torchlight 2 or Van Helsing, both of which are incidentally better games too.

      • frightlever says:

        “You can beat inferno mode without any AH gear whatshowever”

        Guess they changed the game since I gave up a couple of months after launch, mired in Inferno Act 2. The AH economy was already broken by then.

        • gschmidl says:

          Yes, they changed Inferno a lot since launch, toning down the difficulty from “basically unplayable”.

          • frosty2oo2 says:

            yup they toned it right down to cake walk – but its easily changed to something you find challenging if you wish & this can be done from level 1 (nightmare, hell and inferno difficulty seem to lose their reason to exist right around here)

            They do make a good cut scene but I think I’ve still got a hand print on the back of my head from their attempts to push my face into the auction house last time around.

      • Nesetalis says:

        The always online bullshit actually bit me hard.
        I own sc2, wc3 + expansions, wow + expansions, d1, d2+expansions, d3…
        And then I moved, and blizzard decided to lock my account for some reason when I finally got net back. Then the required method of unlocking doesn’t work.

        When I made my account, my ex boyfriend was paying for my WoW subscription some 7 years ago… and the account got put in his name… and for one reason or another they would never allow me to change it. So now to access my account, I have to some how prove that I am my ex that i haven’t seen in 6 years.

        I can’t play my games because they got linked to that account, I can’t free my games from that account, and I can’t play them offline.

        So I say FUCK BLIZZARD. :\

    • nbringer says:

      And everything (including Single) still always online! They ARE tryting to fix D3, but it is rotten to the core… Just put fire on it and move along.

      • frightlever says:

        “Nextgen” console versions are offline and don’t have an AH. It can be done.

      • Surlywombat says:

        They will never make D3 offline on PC. If you look at the game closely you can see a lot of it is looks to be actually based on the same tech as wow.

        To patch in offline to D3 they would need to give everyone the ability to run a local server files, and they aren’t going to do that.

        • Apocalypse says:

          So, we have those files already on the PS3? ;-)

          • Screamer says:

            Exactly! If they took 7 years to develop DIII, and only 1 year for a PS3 version, it means its basically the same code and just a port. So it offline is definitely possible.

            Unless they developed the PS3 version parallel to the PC which I highly doubt.

            So unfortunately we are stuck with a game that require servers for the foreseeable future, which cost money, and guess where they want to recoup that ? And guess how they can get the maximum amount of cash from the AH? Force everyone to use it.

    • nyjizikyzazo01 says:

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    • mrtoad says:

      Cause you’d rather give your coin to Chinese gold farmers than real-life people through the Blizzard AH?

  2. somnolentsurfer says:

    So, no offline mode then?

  3. KikiJiki says:

    I see Blizzard’s idea of character design is the same old thing.


    • tyren says:

      Well, that IS the established look for their angels. That’s not a new character.

    • lordfrikk says:

      If I were a corrupted angel dude I’m sure I’d be wearing a badass hoodie, too.

  4. Premium User Badge

    Ben Barrett says:

    Yeah, there wasn’t a peep about the launch difficulties/always online status. Meant to mention it but forgot. Place fury below.

    • Seiniyta says:

      Why should they reference it again? the game sold 12 million copies. Why from a business point of view should they change that now? Especially since the pro’s definitly outweighted the cons for Blizzard. Would I love to have an offline version of D3? Sure, but considering so many games already require an always online connection (even if they are free to play or mmo’s) I’m not so annoyed by that as long as the service works.

      The launch sucked but that was that too. It isn’t a SimCity.

      • Osmedirez says:

        Sure.. they sold 12 million.. Wonder how many of those were sold because they were bundled with a wow expansion?

        Wondering what they will bundle with this to sell it?

        But you know what they say…

        Don’t fear the reaper, baby.

        Also: Death Pony??? Really? Okay well.. his 3 brothers are the plot of D4, right?

        • Seiniyta says:

          I’ve heard that one before with Call of Duty, frustration every year. Yet people keep buying.

      • Barnaby says:

        @ Seiniyta: Try as you may to explain away the RMAH, always online requirement, being forced to start the game on easy mode, etc, it still doesn’t change the mediocre/dull gameplay and balance issues that were present during the most important period of the game’s life.

        To sum up, your opinion is wrong and you should change it.

        • hotmaildidntwork says:

          In addition the simple fact that they can get away with something doesn’t have any particular bearing on the heinousness of doing so. Just because they’re acting exactly as we would expect them to doesn’t mean we can’t complain about it.

      • JohnnyPanzer says:

        Let’s make one thing clear: the sequel to D2 sold 12 million copies, D3 sold exactly zero.

  5. golem09 says:

    Nice, tailoring loot to the character.
    In a one stat game. Gratulations.

  6. Eddard_Stark says:

    The very thought that I would have to suffer more of Chris Metzen’s majestic writing makes me want to hide in the darkest corner of the Earth and squeal in horror.

    • Rizlar says:

      Blizzard really shouldn’t be allowed to put dialogue in cinematic trailers. See: Mists of Pandaland.

  7. AngusPrune says:

    You lost me as a player in the first week. You can whistle for my money. You’ll be damn lucky if you get me to buy the next near full price starcraft expansion, and I actually enjoy that game.

    • Premium User Badge

      kororas says:

      Seconded. Took me 2 weeks though.

    • Dances to Podcasts says:

      “Don’t play games at launch.” should be a corollary to RPS’s “Don’t pre-order games” rule.

  8. rocketman71 says:

    Since PS3 is worthy of offline mode (BTW, weren’t always-online and the RMAH integral parts of the game that couldn’t be disabled?), and we’re apparently not, I can only add my voice to the chorus: FUCK YOU BLIZZARD.

    Thank god for Torchlight 2.

    • somnolentsurfer says:

      On the positive side for Blizzard, they did at least manage to actually deliver a Mac version, as opposed to just promise one and then go quiet for a year.

    • captainparty says:

      Nope, they never said that, it was an anti hacking, cheating and piracy measure right from the start, PS3s are a lot trickier to hack games on than the PC, so its not an issue there.

    • realitysconcierge says:

      Hear hear!

  9. Freud says:

    Complaining about having to be online to play a game in 2013 is silly. Pretty much everyone has some form of broadband and if you can’t find something else to play when traveling/in a spot without connection you are just looking for things to rage about.

    It might not be a design decision you agree with but it’s certainly a valid one. That it helps combat piracy makes it even more valid.

    • Premium User Badge

      Ben Barrett says:

      A noble sacrifice to the gods of rage.

    • somnolentsurfer says:

      Have you ever tried using the Internet on East Coast trains?

      • OedipusPrime says:

        Well, if I can’t play this from the fertile gaming paradise of east coast trains, I just don’t want to play it at all.

    • rustybroomhandle says:

      Speak for yourself, first-worlder.

    • AngusPrune says:

      That sounds like a reasonable argument in theory, but in practice my experience with D 3 was constantly being dumped out of a single player game because apparently my fixed line internet connection maybe dropped a packet here and there. I don’t think I ever managed to play more than an hour at a stretch without being dumped from the game and losing a bunch of progress.

      They traded the money they could have made from me as a satisfied gamer for the very dubious prospect of getting money from the people who might have otherwise pirated it. Was that a good tradeoff for them? We’ll see how their customer loyalty has been affected on their next big release.

      • Seiniyta says:

        When your game sells 12 million copies, (4 million after all the issues etc came to light) yeah. People will buy it en masse. It’s only a vocal minority who says they’re not going to buy it and most of the time end up buying it anyway as they get carried away by hype. And then the next year they say again, but buy it anyway. ;)

        • AngusPrune says:

          That’s not a condition that carries on forever. Do you think 12 million would buy D4 if they announced it tomorrow? Or do you think that perhaps there’d be a healthy dose of cynicism about it? There’ll doubtless be a sequel eventually, but the hype for 3 was caused by the fond memories of D2. What will D4 be trading on? Memories of frustration and poor gameplay?

          • fish99 says:

            It didn’t have poor gameplay, the gameplay was probably the best I’ve seen in an ARPG (as a DH at least, and once you were past normal difficulty). In fact that’s one of the biggest shames, that underneath all the crap (AH, RMAH, Error 37, grinding, disconnects, account hacks, inferno act 2 wall, annoying story) etc there was a very fun game.

          • Baines says:

            We’ll see what happens when EA announces a new Sim City. With a little time and the right promises, people will come back, even the ones who felt burned before.

    • TheLoneWanderah says:

      When the online implementation can cause endless lag while playing solo and can cause disconnections (while playing the starter trial I disconnected 4 times while just trying to make a character, in the end I just rushed through the creation due to that) then I think there may just be something wrong with how it was implemented.
      And no, not everyone has some form of broadband as some of my friends can attest so they’re just out and out screwed.
      Couple this with the console versions not having to deal with this nonsense and there’s no reason why the PC version should be crippled thus.

      • OedipusPrime says:

        Creating a character is literally a process of choosing a class and picking a name, what aspect were you forced to rush through?

    • gravity_spoon says:

      As every noble person who has responded intelligently to you, I’d do the honor instead. Please sir, shove that always-online BS up your arse. Unable to do it? Here let me shove it up your bunghole for ya. Feeling better ? Now take these 2 fucks and a quarter of rat’s ass. No charges. They are complimentary :)

    • Premium User Badge

      kororas says:

      There was too much effort in the wrong areas. Always online and DRM was one of these. Its just not necessary and I think the experience has suffered for it.

      Yeh the numbers sold may be impressive but as another commenter said before me, how many of those people would you expect to buy the game with hindsight?

    • ZeDestructor says:

      Have you played it on 500ms pings? Obviously not.

    • Apocalypse says:

      You point?

      How about we add a function to your car that it demands to be always on to start the engine? I mean, we all have internet connection in our cars as well and it sounds like a good idea to get travel information up-to-date via online services, furthermore the whole driving experience would be enhanced if our cars transfer traffic information to a central traffic control.

      Besides that ironic parallel I have something for you to think about:

      While I literally have 100% internet up time (no wonder with 3 different connections) in the last 3 years neither Sony, Activison-Blizzard, EA or Ubisoft were able to achieve this. Always on requirements apply not only to your connection, but to theirs as well. Sony managed to to go offline for weeks. Literally weeks. Blizzard screwed up their launch so badly as we are all aware off and sim city needs to much more comments and Ubisoft is notorious for its instability of uplay. The only good thing you can say about uplay is that Ubisoft stopped using the always-on DRM mostly, which means that each time they went off at least you can still play even when their single player games have actually online components which stop working in those cases. That is the right way to handle such features in single player.
      Other people may have not such stable or many internet connections like I do, so they have the additional problem that their failing connection will prevent them. Just imagine what happens to those people if all games would use always-on DRM.

      Always on DRM is against the categorical imperative, it is amoral and rotten to the core.

    • Viroso says:

      I had made a longer reply but it didn’t go through, so a shorter version of how it has sucked for me:

      -lag while playing alone

      -Can’t mod it

      -I spend half the year away from home at work, I can play other games, not D3, because the Internet sucks there.

      -My characters are exposed to hacking, my main account is exposed to hacking. Didn’t Blizzard get hacked recently?

      -Me and my brother used to play D2 a lot when we still lived together. We both got D3 on launch, one of the reasons was so we could play it together again. Many times due to some random bullshit, we could not play. Stuff like server maintenance. We don’t get a lot of chances to play together anymore, even less because of being forced to use battle.net

      -It does not improve the game in any way. The game could exist as it is without an always online requirement. Maybe less people would use the Auction House, but it’s not like the AH is that good of a feature is it.

      So it has gotten in my way many times.

      • Baines says:

        Viroso, if you spell out the “D” word, the forum eats your post without warning or chance of recovery.

        Very annoying, but as it has been that way for so long, I guess it won’t ever be addressed.

    • anark10n says:

      Let’s say we take that comment as true (which it isn’t), and now take into consideration the speed at which these connections must run for lag-free gameplay. In case you cannot picture it, I’m talking about those places which rounding to nearest 100th KB/sec would be down to 0.

    • studenteternal says:

      Nope, I have nice 50 Mbps broadband, yet when I tried to resume act two lag made the game unplayable. Thanks goodness I didn’t waste money on this POS. (free copy from friends).

  10. Yosharian says:

    Path of Exile

    • Seiniyta says:

      Also requires an constant internet connection ;). And doesn’t control nearly as nice as D3. The itemgame is interesting.

      • TheLoneWanderah says:

        In fairness, Path of Exile is a free to play game so it at least makes sense in requiring a connection.

        • Seiniyta says:

          But still requires a constant internet connnection. My comment was more tongue in cheek though ;) . I personally didn’t enjoy Path of exile as much (too slow for my taste) but I can see why people like it more then D3. But I can’t help but giggle when people point to Path of exile after stating they have the always online component of D3.

          • Yosharian says:

            I never once stated that I have a problem with D3’s always online requirement. D3 has a boatload of issues, none of which are anything to do with always online.

      • Yosharian says:

        ‘Doesn’t control as nice’ is subjective, I prefer the way PoE feels.

        It definitely has some lag issues though.

        For me PoE’s skill tree makes the game.

    • Bloodloss says:

      … is utter grindy shite for people who have too much time on their hands due to no respecs etc.

      • Yosharian says:

        The whole point of no respec is your choices matter, and you get _some_ respect points anyway. This is just how D2 was.

        As for grindy, I’m not finding it particularly grindy.

    • felix6 says:

      I’v just found path of exile and I really think its a breath of fresh air in the genre. Atleast they are trying to innovate the genre, without dumbing down the game. If the stuff avaliable for cash in the game get better they will have my money, I find there microtransaction store pretty dull… guess I can donate just to help them progress the game.

      What i love most about the game is the skillsystem(both the passiv and active skill system), the ingame currency, how they use pots and the dark tone in the game. Artistically it feels closer to D2 than D3 does imo, and we all love(d) d2 right? ;)

      • Yosharian says:

        Yeah this pretty much.

        The only issue I have is the lag issue.

  11. Orija says:

    Did they outsource their writing to a ten year kid in some Chinese sweatshop?

    • Hmm-Hmm. says:

      Well, if so we should see an improvement in the quality of the writing.

  12. MeestaNob says:

    if they can just re-balance the game so that it doesn’t feel like the loot drops are entirely built around dependency on the Auction House then I’m interested. As it is, I’ve got two characters who have both gone through to at least Hell difficulty and neither of them are using virtually anything that I didn’t buy with gold on the Auction House, everything I have picked up has almost always been outclassed by what was available for next to nothing (except gold) online.

  13. bstard says:

    Oh Blizzard, I was foolish enough to buy D3.. stick the reaper where no soul dares.

  14. Moraven says:

    Here’s what’s new:
    New Class: The Crusader
    New Feature: Loot Runs
    Loot 2.0
    The Mystic
    New Level Cap – 70
    New Act
    Major Paragon Changes
    New Monsters

  15. Jonfon says:

    Most likely reason is that your Browser isn’t sending the Referrer header. For some reason the RPS site decides that this means you are a bot rather than a human with an ad-blocker running (or using Opera with referrer sending blocked for privacy, in my case).

    (Sorry, that was a reply to someone wondering why their posts get rejected as Spam sometimes, which seems to have vanished)

    On topic I’ve avoided D3 so far. If this expansion plus the console release means the AH and always-online get pulled then I’ll buy it.

    Also didn’t the D2 expansion have 2 new classes in it, not just one?

    • anduin1 says:

      Druid and assassin, and they won’t be reining in the AH or always online unless this expansion sells 3 copies

  16. TsunamiWombat says:

    I’m torn between how mediocre Blizzards games have been getting (especially the writing), and PALADIN CLASS PALADIN CLASS PALADIN CLASS

    PS: Thanks for that beta participation PC gamers

  17. aliksy says:

    Meh. The original was unsatisfying. Norma\l mode was too easy and too long. Nightmare was mostly okay. Hell was there the inability to dodge and the fucking awful miniboss mechanics started to shine. Inferno was where it became undeniable that the game was really just a series of gear checks.

    Fuck gear checks.

  18. derbefrier says:

    I could deal with always online and even the RMAH but blizz lost me when I realized D3 has the depth of a Nickel Back song. Path of Exile is where its at right now for those that want a more in depth arpg with an active community.

  19. Synesthesia says:

    Woah, that is some amazing animation. It really is. Still, fuck always online. Still a nope for me.

  20. nrvsNRG says:

    eeeeek!!! i cant wait i cant wait i cant wait!!

  21. fish99 says:

    For all the issues I had enough fun with D3 to get my moneys worth.

    • RedWurm says:

      Going by time played, I suppose I technically did as well. The trouble is that it’s a sequel to d2 – which I don’t just have fond memories of, I still play a modded version of it. And despite the enjoyable combat, the main thing I recall about d3 was constant unresolved connection problems and the game being little more than a massive grind that rewards you with the option to go shopping. For some very dull items.

      This expansion seems to be adding some potentially interesting stuff, but I have no confidence that blizzard are even going to try and address the real problems.

  22. RedViv says:

    Oh Tyrael. At least this puts an end to your sad story of constantly half-saving the world.

  23. anduin1 says:

    No thanks, d3 wasn’t even bad but nowhere near up to their regular standards. Was never a fan of the AH or always on drm, would have loved to try more classes by making instant level 50 in single player to test it out. The story felt paper thin after the first act.

  24. Stevostin says:

    The worst thing about this is that not only is it ridiculously dull, overpriced, aiming at a young teen audience that simple doesn’t make sense with PC gaming, but it’s also looking cheesy. It’s not remotely beautiful like, say, Dota 2 is.

  25. 2helix4u says:

    I’ll buy this and the new starcraft 2 expansion for the same reason I’ll always watch M Night Shyamalan movies. They have a level of badness in the writing and general story execution that is just endlessly fascinating and funny.
    I think its the combination of trying extremely hard, believing in themselves and failing in every regard.

    I mean we saw the soulstone or whatever fall out of heaven at the end of D3, but now its back there, oh wait no its not Tyrael is moving it away. Uh oh! Another character who has outstayed their welcome is threatened by mortal danger in a cut scene will they survive? Yes he will because we are supposed to like Tyrael despite him being a complete, utter dumbass in every action (then at the end of D3 he becomes the aspect of wisdom, to be fair to D3 I was laughing my arse off for the last act).

    They have a really unique type of bad where all the characters are delusional idiots but the writers are unaware they come across this way. (Jim raynor in SC2 – “fuck all the events and overarching story of the previous and current games, i wanna get my dick wet in that zerg queen i swore to kill in the last game!”)
    Its a shame blizzard fell this far, but I’m happy that I at least still get to enjoy their games.
    Man, I love them.

  26. fiendling says:

    Hmmmm… so, the console releases get an offline mode but we don’t?

    Except for the RMAH, what possible justification can they give for this? Don’t tell us that the PS3 can handle the “intrinsic” server-side computations but our PCs can’t.

  27. stampy says:


    hell, we all know the game sucked. lets stop beating a dead horse. on the other hand, this cinematic is awesome. cant we just talk about that? can we just talk about how awesome the cinematic is, enjoy, and then remember to not buy the expansion?

  28. kynetarse says:

    I’m sorry Blizzard, I can’t hear you over the sound of how awesome Torchlight 2 is.

  29. Commissar Choy says:

    Sweet, the 15-20 min dungeons sounds really awesome. :D

  30. JohnnyPanzer says:

    I think I’d rather send a monthly donation to EA than buy one more game from Blizzard, and I love EA about as much as I love my crippling STD…

  31. xf11 says: