After a few months steeping on the PTR, it’s time for another massive Diablo III [official site] patch. Like, surprisingly massive. The type of content a different developer might package up, slap a name on, and sell for a fiver.
Want the rundown?
The four-year wait between the announcement of Diablo III [official site] in 2008 and its release felt like an eternity but dang, Blizzard have spent almost that long continuing to work on the game after launch. Last night brought a hefty update, Patch 2.3.0, with new monsters, areas, items, a persistent progression track with goals and rewards, and a magical new cube a bit like Diablo II’s Horadric Cube. With the ability to reforge Legendary items, transmute materials, and extract powers, it sounds quite a treasure.
Come have a peep at all the patch adds in this here viddy vid:
At Gamescom last week Blizzard announced that Heroes of the Storm [official site] would get a host of updates including new heroes, a map and skins. Some of this content is now out on the Public Test Realm, Blizzard’s publicly available testing environment where players can help shake out bugs and preview what’s coming next. There’s one very interesting change: you must now buy any paid-for items before you can test them. It’s a strange combo of Early Access and pre-ordering, where these items – in this case new hero Kharazim, aka the Monk from Diablo 3 – will transfer to your main account only when they’re fully released.
The official launch of Diablo 3 [official site], uhhhh, it could have been better, yeah? Game Director Josh Mosqueira, who joined the team as the console lead in 2012, did a talk at GDC yesterday about how things were internally at this time and going forward into developing the expansion, Reaper of Souls. Check it out below, along with the latest details on the upcoming patch.
Diablo was the awkward child of this BlizzCon. With WoW’s expansion coming soon and StarCraft’s Legacy of the Void now being shown off, Diablo is the only currently-released game without a paid update on the horizon. I figured another expansion would be announced this weekend, but between a new game, movie news and the like, nothing was forthcoming. When asked, the reply was “nothing to announce.” Instead, the panel on Friday was focused on upcoming patches, the next of which is 2.1.2, and what changes they’ll bring. Check out the details below.
Because video games, one of the things added in the latest Diablo III patch is “The Cesspools.” They’re the sewers of Westmarch, a city overrun by an angel of death and his hoards of minions, making them only slightly better than a toy store in the run up to Christmas. They’re included in patch 2.1.0 as a new area to explore within the endgame Nephalem Rifts, quick one-shot dungeons with totally random layout and encounters. These have also received an upgrade, now with timed “Greater Rift” versions that provide unique rewards and global leaderboards for speed and difficulty. The most significant introduction is Seasons, similar to the character ladders in ealier Diablo games, which allow a competitive version of levelling and loot hoarding.
Kumquat-complexioned entrepreneur David Dickinson shoulders you aside as he storms the corridors of the Diablo III Auction House. “How can they shut it all down?” He barks, beads of butter springing from his forehead where only sweat would be visible on a lesser man. “Where will I be able to offload this Wicker Chair of +7 Discomfort and Old Tin Soldier of +2 Melancholy Reflections About The Interwar Years?” The items in question are firmly secured in his gargantuan trouser pocket.
“Well, Sir Dickinson.” You begin, struggling to keep pace with his powerful stride. Dickinson hasn’t been formally knighted by the monarch but the ‘Sir’ is fitting – the silver gavel of a higher power still has often caressed the lint from his shoulders behind the carved doors of certain secret chambers. “Nothing will be lost, at least not yet.”
He turns to you, actual bolts of lightning sparking across the damp crevices of his brow. “Explain. And then show me a very noisy trailer for Reaper of Souls.”