Archive for January, 2012

Diablo 3 – more delays

If anyone was hoping for a February or even March release date, think again. Jay Wilson, Diablo 3′s game director and soon to be out-of-work bum, says some of the game’s systems need a revamp.

Update: Jay losing his job? No, it’s the senior producer of Diablo who just left Blizzard after 5 years of Diablo 3 (source: his Twitter!).

While working on Diablo III we’ve been called out for messing around with systems too much, that the game is good as-is and we should just release it. I think that’s a fair argument to make, but I also think it’s incorrect. Our job isn’t just to put out a game, it’s to release the next Diablo game. No one will remember if the game is late, only if it’s great. We trust in our ability to put out a great game, but we’re not quite there yet. In addition to finishing and polishing the content of the game we’re continuing to iterate on some of the core game systems.

Now, the post is quite long but there’s the highlights for you:

Scrolls of Identification are no longer in the game – you click, wait for a progress bar and you get the item identified.

Dedicated potion button – the fifth slot becomes a potion button, although chugging potions isn’t as easy as in Diablo 2

Removing the Mystic artisan – couldn’t make the enchantments good enough, so scrapping the whole concept

Town portal back in the game – remove the Cauldron of Jordan and Nephalem Cube (proxies for crafting and selling to vendor).

Attributes cleanup – dropping Defense, Attack, and Precision as attributes, Armor is taking over for what Defense used to provide, +Physical Resist will take over for Armor, and +Chance to Crit will fill in for Precision

In conclusion, Jay says that’s not all:

There’s a lot of work left to be done, though. We’re constantly tuning and making balance changes; it’s a massive task. Some of these changes can be seen in the beta, like changes to item rarity, the levels at which we introduce affixes, and how many affixes enemies can roll up. Some you can’t see in the beta, like balancing the difficulty of the entire game for four different difficulty levels, adding tons of new affixes, creating legendary items, filling out crafting recipes and itemization, working on achievements, and implementing features. We’re also working on a number of other large systems changes — specifically with the skill and rune systems. We’re not quite ready to share what those are just yet, but we look forward to being able to do so in the near future.

You gotta ask yourself, if they are working for 5 years on this game, why the hell the town portal icon looks like … shit.

Diablo 3 approved in Korea, release now clear

Diablo 3 has finally received the blessing of Korea’s game review board. On one condition: remove all real-money transactions from the game.

I know some of you would like Blizzard to do that worldwide but no, it’s only a Korean thing (for now).

There has been a ton of speculation that Blizzard was dragging their feet with the release (and extended the beta), just to buy some time to please the Koreans. As you know, it’s one of their major markets for eSports games (Starcraft).

So now that the road is clear, when will Blizzard announce a release date for Diablo 3? If you ask the guys at BestBuy, they already did and that date is February 1. Now that’s a lot of bullshit from BestBuy, trying to get the early pre-orders.

Diablo 15 anniversary

Diablo celebrates its 15th anniversary on December 31. The original Diablo was released on December 31, 1996.

It’s funny that Diablo 2 took only 5 years to come about, while Diablo 3 is taking 10. By this yardstick, Diablo 4 will come in 20 years. Maybe it will be played in some kind of Gothic virtual reality. Now that would be the stuff of nightmares!

Also, Happy New 2012 – Year of the Dragon but also more importantly, Year of Diablo 3!

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