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 Travis Day on Diablo III future - briefly
(hx) 12:47 PM EST - Mar,03 2013
An extensive post to the Diablo III forums by game designer Travis Day responds to a thread about Blizzard's action/RPG sequel titled 'The Salvation of Diablo 3' with some frank insights into how the game came to its current state, and their approach to supporting it going forward. Here's a bit:
Character Customization
Your system idea for Nephalem Power Stat is basically a roundabout way of suggesting we re-implement the Diablo 2 skill system. The old skill system was fun, back in the day, but I think it’s honestly dated in today’s landscape. People fondly remember making tons of characters and trying out different builds, and while I have a lot of those same fond memories, I also remember that usually the end result of my time investment in my “cool new character” was complete and utter disappointment.
Today the availability of web sites or posts about character builds would mostly overshadow any of that old character rerolling. You would read a post saying someone else tried the build that you had imagined would be amazing, only to find out it was awful, or you would find out it was great and build it also. The skill system today allows people the flexibility to try out things they enjoy without penalizing players who want to experiment with new ideas. The only difference is if their idea doesn’t pan out, you didn’t waste hours leveling a bad character.
Character customization is fun. People want more ways to feel different from their neighbor, and we want to help provide players with more options in this regard as well. There are lots of things that we have discussed and some ideas we have for long term system additions to the game to help in this regard. One of them which I mentioned in another post is the plan to eventually introduce a system to allow players to customize their character appearance more. Another system we haven’t talked about before is the long term plan to change the way the Paragon system works to allow it to offer more character customization in the form of actual power. The details of that system are still being worked out and players probably won’t get their hands on it for quite a while. We do agree that customization is important and we want more ways for players to both express themselves and differentiate themselves from their friends and other members of the community.

Too many items
I cover this topic in some depth in the upcoming Item Blog that community is in the process of getting ready for release next week. I will briefly say that we agree that too many items drop and we have plans to eventually reduce the rate that players see items, while also taking measures to improve the general quality of items you do see. The end result should be fewer items that are better instead of tons of items you don’t want.

Legendary and Set items
This is a topic I’ve touched on some in this thread and it is also a talking point of the upcoming Item Blog, so I’ll just say that we agree and we want Legendary items to feel game changing.

Finding your own gear
Whenever we talk about what the fantasy of Diablo is and what we want the core gameplay to be, never do we say “we want players to farm gold and go buy items off the auction house”. The AH definitely has made an impact on Diablo 3 and we talk about it constantly, but our conversations are usually in the context of “how can we get players to find their own loot instead of just buying it”. The new crafting recipes and Demonic Essences were added to provide a little bit of this gameplay but we have a lot of ideas for the long term about how we want to go about addressing this. At the end of the day, it is our intention that players are able to find their own items, because we feel the game is just more fun that way. There are several reason why it might not feel that way right now. One is the inherent randomness of our loot system. Another is the fact that the AH completely removes all friction between player trades. And another is when players DO find items they should be excited about, they are often disappointed because this items are not very good. All of these are very important and we hope to address them over time.

last 10 comments:
Csimbi(11:13 AM EST - Mar,04 2013 )
Hmmm. I get the feeling that these guys did not get the message.
There is no salvation for Diablo 3: no matter what they do, there'll always be an unhappy camp
Recognize that it has failed, move on to Diablo 4 and get that right!

Apathy Curve(11:57 AM EST - Mar,04 2013 )
All those words come down to this: You screwed up by attempting to fleece your player base with the forced gold-farming and RM auction house-based item system. Said players refused to become sheep, and now your shareholders are growling about the disparity between projected and actual revenue. So you're going to try to "fix" this "mistake."

No sale, Blizzard. You blew it and ruined your reputation as a gamer-centric company by engaging in a disgusting display of naked greed. You'll never get that good reputation back.

Path of Exile is quite enjoyable. So is Torchlight 2. I don't need Diablo 3 and it is unlikely I'll ever re-install it, no matter what you do to it. Of greater importance, I and many others will be extremely skeptical of Blizzard releases in the future. You went from "insta-buy" to "wait-and-see" in one fell swoop. Decisions have consequences.

Baconnaise(12:10 PM EST - Mar,04 2013 )
I think it's beyond that point as well. Blizzard died years ago.

Tom(02:04 PM EST - Mar,04 2013 )
Blizzard blows bald goats. D3 was my last Blizzard game. Don't care if Blizzard dies tomorrow. They were shit the day they made WoW pay2play. I got Starcraft at a major discount, it sucked. Then got D3 thinking they couldn't possibly F that up, only to find out they did totally destroy it. The store was absolutely stupid. I'm done with Blizzard. TL2 is definitely more worthwhile than D3... without an arguement there.

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