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  1. New Class Intros Discovered For Diablo Immortal Earlier today, Reddit user /u/RandomMan00 posted about some changes they had noticed on the Chinese Diablo Immortal website. The majority of the new videos that were linked in that Reddit post are updated intros for all of the announced playable classes in Immortal and are different from the ones currently shown on the Immortal websites from other regions. The updated intros for the Wizard, Monk, and Demon Hunter match the ones seen in the BlizzCon 2019 demo, but these videos were never shared online apart from the few live streams that were shown from the convention. The intros for the Crusader and Necromancer are completely new, but that is because neither of these classes were playable at BlizzCon 2019 for the clips to be shown. The Barbarian intro is the most interesting of all as the while the animation and majority of the character model are exactly the same as the one from BlizzCon 2019 the face is completely different and the skin tone has changed, hinting at the possibility of character customization being included in the game. Character customization has been a key feature that Blizzard has talked about for Diablo IV, but we've not heard any news about such a feature being included in Immortal. Character customization is a huge component of most RPGs and skins, tints, or other similar systems are prevalent across all genres of games nowadays, so adding in the feature for Immortal to allow players to make their characters unique is a welcomed addition. The timing of these updates are rather convenient ahead of the ChinaJoy gaming convention scheduled to start tomorrow, July 31st. Ever since Blizzard's comments that Immortal would begin regional testing sometime "mid-year" the community has been filled with rumors and speculation on just when we'll get more news on the game and many are expecting to hear something from this weekend's convention. Looking ahead for other potential updates, there is another quarterly investor conference from ATVI schedule for August 4th and Blizzard will also be participating in the online gamescom show which takes place from August 27th - 30th. View the full article
  2. Full Scholomance Academy Card List Our friends over at Hearthpwn have the full list of Scholomance Academy Cards and all the details for Hearthstone's latest expansion! Be sure to visit this page if you're interested in what the new expansion has to offer! View the full article
  3. New Diablo Themed Gear Available From SDCC Celebration The Blizzard Gear Store is hosting a "San Diego Comic Con At Home" celebration where fans can buy new swag from all of the major Blizzard franchises. You can expect to see new set Diablo themed items on the Gear Store, including some new shirts, hoodies, art, and a Diablo IV collector's pin. View the full article
  4. Latest News From Diablo IV Team In New Update! Season 21 Mega-Post! Season 21 Seasonal Theme Hotfix Blizzard just released a hotfix to address some of the accessibility issues the seasonal theme has had for many players, as well as addressing some functionality issues the theme's mechanics were having with pets, set dungeons, and some exploitative mechanics. While there may still be some unresolved issues around how the mechanics of theme are being used to push the leaderboards, this is a step in the right direction and we hope to see more balance fixes as S21 continues. Originally Posted by FilthieRich (Official Post) This morning we launched a hotfix to address updates for Season 21: Trials of Tempest. Thanks to your feedback, we’ve been able to focus on audio and visual accessibility issues and the functionality of the Seasonal Theme procs. FYI, as a hotfix, you will not need to update your game. Simply exit out and re-login to grab the update. Hotfix Notes: • Lightning flashes will no longer occur when the seasonal effect for Lightning Breath and Tornadoes takes effect. • Audio horns has been removed from the PC version of the game. Console versions has had horns replaced with a light drum. • Pets can now generate stacks of the Seasonal theme. • Players can no longer carry an ongoing Seasonal theme effect into a Greater Rift. (Lightning Breath, Meteors) • Players can no longer carry a Seasonal theme effect to trigger outside a Greater Rift to only have it begin inside. (Tornadoes, Snowball, Fire Wave) • Pets no longer proc the seasonal theme in set dungeons. This is to address the issues of users having issues completing set dungeons. As the season progresses, we welcome more of your feedback and want to give a big thanks to all of you for helping us get here - See you in hell! View the full article
  5. Latest News From Diablo IV Team In New Update! Season 21 Mega-Post! Challenge Rift - Week 160 Challenge Rift Week 160 is live! This week the Challenge Rift features three very different Witch Doctor builds! If you are curious how Challenge Rift builds are chosen each week, you can view this official blog post! Challenge Rift 160 - NA by OSW_Zenkiki Soul Harvest Soul to Waste Grasp of the Dead Unbreakable Grasp Horrify Frightening Aspect Wall of Death Communing with Spirits Spirit Walk Jaunt Piranhas Piranhado Confidence Ritual Swampland Attunement Creeping Death Grave Injustice Challenge Rift 160 - EU by OSW_Zenkiki Haunt Resentful Spirits Locust Swarm Pestilence Spirit Walk Severance Soul Harvest Languish Piranhas Piranhado Horrify Frightening Aspect Grave Injustice Spirit Vessel Creeping Death Confidence Ritual Challenge Rift 160 - Asia by OSW_Zenkiki Poison Dart Spined Dart Grasp of the Dead Desperate Grasp Summon Zombie Dogs Burning Dogs Spirit Walk Jaunt Fetish Army Legion of Daggers Gargantuan Humongoid Spirit Vessel Fetish Sycophants Jungle Fortitude Grave Injustice View the full article
  6. Latest News From Diablo IV Team In New Update! New In-Game Wings For Diablo III Diablo II Retrospective New Lord Of Terror Bust Season 21: Trials of Tempests Season 21 introduces the Trial of Tempests theme! For the duration of Season 21, your character will occasionally (every 90 seconds) channel an elemental power which unleashes into the environment for a limited time. These elemental powers are: Rain meteors from the skies around you. Breathe lightning. Summon a wall of flame. Release twisters of pure energy. Crush your foes under the weight of rolling snowballs. Season 21 begins on Friday, July 3rd at 5:00pm in each region. Season 21 goes live on all Consoles world wide at 5:00pm PDT, the same time as PC in North America. For timezone conversion, visit this site! Table of Contents Season 21: Trial of Tempests Discord Server Haedrig's Gift & Seasonal Rewards Seasonal Conquests Season 21 Starter Guides Level With A Cause Challenge Rift Week 158 Patch 2.6.9 Notes DiabloFans Discord Join us on our Discord server! It's the perfect place for finding people to group with, get your questions answered, and stay up to date on the latest news! You can join our server by clicking on the banner below, or by going here! If you don't use Discord you're missing out, but you can also find people to play with by using our forums! Haedrig's Gift & Seasonal Rewards Completing Chapters 2, 3, and 4 of the Seasonal Journey will reward you with three of Haedrig’s Gifts. Each Gift contains a few pieces from one of your Class Sets. Players can only unlock one Class Set in this manner per Season across Hardcore and Non-Hardcore, so choose wisely! The set you will receive depends on the class of the character you’re playing when you open each Haedrig’s Gift. To collect a full Class Set, you’ll need to open all three on the same character. Here are the sets granted by Haedrig’s Gift in Season 21: Barbarian – Might of the Earth Crusader – Thorns of the Invoker Demon Hunter – The Shadow's Mantle Monk – Monkey King's Garb Necromancer – Grance of Inarius Witch Doctor – Rainment of the Jade Harvester Wizard – Firebird's Finery In Season 17, Blizzard began re-introducing previous Seasonal rewards to make them available to players who may have missed them the first time around. This means that for Season 21, awards originally available from Season 9 are returning to the Season Journey. Blizzard is continuing to provide new End of Journey rewards as was introduced in Season 17, with two new cosmetic rewards for those who complete the entirety of the Season Journey. These rewards will be the Stupendous Contraption pet and the Industrial Portrait Frame. Seasonal Conquests Want to prepare your Conquests plans for Season 21? Here are all the conquests you'll face this season! Guardian of Sanctuary: Finish a level 70 Nephalem Rift on Torment XIII difficulty within 5 minutes. Gem of My Life: Level three Legendary Gems to level 55. All I Do is Win: Complete 2 Conquests this Season. Lose Yourself: Kill the Skeleton King at level 70 in under 30 seconds on Torment XIII difficulty. Money Ain’t a Thang: Slay Greed on Torment XIII difficulty. Treasure Goblins outside of Nephalem Rifts will sometimes open portals to Greed’s domain, The Vault. Take U There: Reach Greater Rift Level 60 Solo. Greater Rift keystones can be obtained from any Nephalem Rift guardian. Power Amplification: Use Kanai’s Cube to augment an Ancient Legendary item with a level 50+ gem. Cubic Reconfiguration: Use Kanai’s Cube to reforge a Legendary item. Season 21 Starter Guides Any players looking to level quickly and get the best start to Season 21 should browse the selection of starter guides from various content creators below! If you're looking for a level 1 blood shard gambling guide, AlexRaEU previously posted a comprehensive spreadsheet on the r/Diablo Subreddit! Season 21 Class Starter Guides from Bluddshed: Barbarian Crusader Demon Hunter Monk Necromancer Witch Doctor Wizard Ultimate Seasonal Starter Guide: Seasonal Leveling Guides: Master theory-crafter sVr recently uploaded a very advanced leveling strategy last season that utilizes Necromancers, Cursed Chests, and huge killstreaks to reach level 70 in just over 50 minutes. We do not suggest this method for new players, and only players looking to min-max their leveling experience with like-minded players should try this. This method was made slightly easier in Season 21 due to the increased damage to Corpse Explosion and the Grasps of the Essence. Additionally, diabloseasons.com is a great resource for any average player looking reach level 70 quickly! Level With A Cause Level With A Cause (#LWAC), a coalition of streamers from the Diablo 3 community, will be uniting once again for a charity fundraising event during the first three days of the Season 21 opening weekend in Diablo 3. This marks the team’s 11th event over the last few years. Several Diablo 3 community members will be holding live-streams during this weekend in support of this charity drive. During these live-streams, viewers will be able to donate to the SaveTheChildren charity organization. Level With A Cause was founded prior to the start of Season 11 of Diablo 3 and has been a mainstay of the opening weekend of each new season since that time. The LWAC team has raised over $60,000 to date for deserving charities such as Save The Children, St Jude Children’s Research Hospital, and Take This. LWAC hopes to continue to grow and raise even more money for charities in the future. If you are a streamer looking to participate, more info can be found on the LWAC website. As a viewer, you can simply search for LWAC within stream titles on Twitch during the July 3rd to 5th event. ​ In the U.S. and around the world, Save The Children gives children a healthy start in life, the opportunity to learn and protection from harm. When crisis strikes, they are always among the first to respond and the last to leave. They do whatever it takes to save children, transforming their lives and the future we share. You can donate to the Level With a Cause charity event here! ​ Challenge Rift - Week 158 Challenge Rift Week 158 is live! Because Season 21 begins this Friday, we advise that you DO NOT complete the challenge rift until after you've made your seasonal character! This week the Challenge Rift features three different Wizard builds! Note: The Challenge Rift in the Asia region is still displaying 157, and we will update it to 158 once it changes. If you are curious how Challenge Rift builds are chosen each week, you can view this official blog post! Challenge Rift 158 - NA by OSW_Zenkiki Electrocute Surge of Power Disintegrate Intensify Hydra Mammoth Hydra Energy Armor Pinpoint Barrier Familiar Sparkflint Black Hole Spellsteal Glass Cannon Unwavering Will Power Hungry Temporal Flux Challenge Rift 158 - EU by OSW_Zenkiki Arcane Torrent Static Discharge Teleport Safe Passage Archon Slow Time Black Hole Absolute Zero Storm Armor Power of the Storm Magic Weapon Deflection Evocation Galvanizing Ward Unstable Anomaly Audacity Patch 2.6.9 Changes Patch 2.6.9 added two new class sets to the game! Gears of the Dreadlands is a new Demon Hunter set with a focus on Strafe and Primary Skills, and Masquerade of the Burning Carnival is a new Necromancer set with a focus on Simulacrum and Bone Spear! Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment (Official Post) Patch Notes Below you will find the final patch notes for the most recent update for Diablo III, Patch 2.6.9. Changes specifically from the last version of the PTR have been highlighted in RED. PATCH 2.6.9 Items Demon Hunter New Demon Hunter Set: Gears of Dreadlands 2-Piece Bonus Gain 4 seconds of Momentum when attacking with a Primary skill, at a maximum of 20 seconds. Your Primary skills deal 10% increased damage per second of Momentum.​ 4-Piece Bonus Casting Strafe against enemies will automatically shoot your last used primary skill, and also give 60% damage reduction while strafing and for 5 seconds after. While Strafing, you gain 8% increased movement speed for each second of Momentum. 6-Piece Bonus Your primary skills deal 10000% more damage Leonine Bow of Hashir Bolas have a <s>30% </s>100% chance on explosion to pull in all enemies within 24 yards, and also deal 100-150% increased damage. Emimei's Duffel Bolas now explode instantly and deal 150-175% increased damage. The Ninth Cirri Satchel Hungering Arrow <s>has 20-25%</s> is guaranteed to pierce and also deals 450-600% increased damage. Odyssey's End Enemies snared by your Entangling Shots take <s>20-25% </s>100-150% increased damage from all sources. Hunter's Wrath Your primary skills attack 30% faster and deal <s>45-60%</s> 150-200% increased damage. Holy Point Shot Impale throws 2 additional knives and deals 75-100% increased damage. Necromancer Developer's Note:With the adjustments coming in for a few past Necromancer sets and abilities, we will continue to evaluate the performance of the new set this season and may make additional adjustments in future seasons if we believe they are necessary. New Necromancer Set: Masquerade of the Burning Carnival 2-Piece Bonus Your Simulacrums no longer take damage, gains all runes, and its cooldown is refreshed when you die. 4-Piece Bonus While you have a Simulacrum, damage is reduced by 50%. Damage you take is split with your Simulacrums as well. 6-Piece Bonus Your Bone Spear deals 10,000% increased damage. Simulacrums gain triple this bonus. Grasps of Essence When an exploded corpse damages at least one enemy, Your Corpse Explosion deals <s>75-100%</s> 150-200% increased damage for 6 seconds, stacking up to 5 times. Haunted Visions Simulacrum now drains <s>5%</s> 1% of your maximum life every second and lasts <s>twice as long</s> forever. They can now duplicate Grim Scythe instead of Skeletal Mage. Razeth's Volition Skeletal Mage gains the effect of the Gift of Death and Singularity runes. You gain 35-60% damage reduction if your Essence is not full. Jesseth Arms 2-Piece Set Bonus: While your skeletons are commanded to attack a target, you deal 400% increased damage. Grace of Inarius 4-Piece Set Bonus: Bone Armor grants an additional <s>2%</s> 3% damage reduction per enemy hit. Pestilence Master's Shroud 6-Piece Set Bonus: Each corpse you consume grants you an Empowered Bone Spear charge that increases the damage of your next Bone Spear by 3300%. In addition, Corpse Lance and Corpse Explosion damage is increased by <s>1650%</s> 3300%. Crusader Shield of Fury This effect may stack up to <s>20</s> 10 times. General Stone of Jordan Added power: Each of your elemental's damage bonus is equal to your highest static elemental bonus to skill. Reaper's Wraps Added a 2-second internal cooldown to the Health globe effect. Mantle of Channeling Now works with the Necromancer's Siphon Blood. Convention of Elements Added "non-static" to the wording of the legendary power's description. The functionality is unchanged Return to Top Skill Changes Necromancer Simulacrum These will now warp to the Necromancer if they begin to move too far away from the player. This only works if the Necromancer is wearing the Masquerade of the Burning Carnival set or Haunted Visions. Simulacrums cannot use Grim Scythe (with Haunted Visions) or Skeletal Mage unless the Necromancer had either of those abilities while the Simulacrums were created. Final Service No longer consumes pets. Final Service now activates before Simulacrum's Self Sacrifice. Bone Prison Simulacrums now benefit from this passive skill. Serration Simulacrums now benefit from this passive skill. Corpse Explosion Damage increased from 350% to 1050%. Witch Doctor Spirit Barrage The Spectres from the Phantasm rune no longer benefit from pet bonuses. Return to Top Bug Fixes Necromancer Fixed an issue where Skeletal Mages were not attacking certain creatures PTR Specific: Note: The following issues were only live on the PTR, but we’re including the fixes here for visibility to indicate intended functionality on live. Seasonal effects no longer deal area damage. Seasonal buff resets if player exits and reenters a rift. Seasonal theme should no longer work in Set Dungeons. Fixed Maltorius' Petrified Spike dealing additive bonus damage instead of multiplicative. Fixed seasonal buff that sometimes may drop off whenever the player enters an invulnerable state. Changed seasonal buff to base its damage on the amount of kills. (not really a bug, more of a change) View the full article
  7. Commemorate 20 Years Of Diablo II With Carbot, MrLlamaSC, And New In-Game Wings! Today is the 20th anniversary of Diablo II, and Blizzard has announced multiple ways to celebrate in an official blog post! New In-Game Wings For Diablo III Diablo II Retrospective New Lord Of Terror Bust Baal Runz 101 - Carbot Studios MrLlamaSC Speed Run Of Diablo II Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment (Official Post) Multiple Great Evils (not just one). Hardcore mode. Gem socketing. Fighting demons outside for the first time. Diablo II has a legacy, and it’s in the bloodstream of every game we’ve worked on at Blizzard since the year 2000. It taught our artists, engineers and designers about mood and atmosphere, about randomness, and about what makes plate mail dress-up so persistently delightful. For DII’s 20th anniversary, we’re stoking the campfire and reflecting on a game that shaped how we make games. In the process, we’ve dreamed up some cool stuff, and we hope you’ll check it out and celebrate with us. To start, watch Baal Runz 101, a video developed by animation sorcerer Carbot Studios that we think is among his funniest work yet—and maybe the truest depiction of battling the Lord of Destruction. Read our Diablo II retrospective, with comments from Blizzard employees who’ve grown up developing, playing, and hanging out in the world of Sanctuary. Follow speedrun record-setter MrLlamaSC on a day-long live speedrun through Diablo II beginning at 9 am PT today. He’ll be playing through the entire game up to and including the Pandemonium event and conquering the “Uber” bosses. Bear witness to the unspeakable evil that is this limited-edition Lord of Terror bust. It looms 9” wide by 7-1/8” deep by 10-1/2” tall–the perfect size to desecrate your computer desk. Diablo’s never looked more terrifying (or more enthusiastic). Log in to Diablo III any time after June 29 to unlock your own tendinous Prime Evil Wings and represent the legacy you forged on Arreat Summit. Baal—as we saw in him in Diablo II—did not have wings, but try to imagine what they would’ve looked like if he did, and if you could’ve fastened them to your hero’s shoulders. We’re honored that you’re still enjoying one of our favorite games of all time this long after its release, and we’re grateful to spend a little time reminiscing with you. Thank you, The Diablo Team View the full article
  8. Limited-Edition Lord of Terror Bust Now Available To celebrate the 20th anniversary of Diablo II, Blizzard has released a limited-edition Lord of Terror Bust. It measures at 9" wide by 7-1/8" deep by 10-12" tall. You can find the bust on the official Blizzard gear store here! View the full article
  9. Diablo II Continues To Inspire Blizzard 20 Years Later To commemorate the 20th anniversary of Diablo II, Blizzard has released a retrospective with comments from Blizzard employees who've grown up developing, playing, and hanging out in the world of sanctuary! Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment (Official Post) "Oh, I'd fought sleep for days at a time... For when I dreamt, the memories would return. Memories of the Monastery, and the Evil which had claimed it! Dreams, memories... I couldn't tell the difference anymore." - Marius Crafting a classic When we set out to create Diablo® II over twenty years ago, the goals were seemingly simple: fix the biggest issues in Diablo® and expand upon the original game’s formula. And while its developers didn’t set out specifically to turn the action RPG genre on its head or influence game design for an entire generation after it, Diablo II ended up doing just that anyway. The development team wanted Diablo II to be bigger, better, faster, and stronger than its predecessor. A story divided in distinct acts with massive, explorable outdoor zones replaced the claustrophobic Tristram cathedral. Five new character classes like the whirling Barbarian and pious Paladin (with two more added in the Lord of Destruction® expansion, the Assassin and the Druid) expanded far beyond the basic Warrior, Rogue and Sorcerer archetypes from the first game. These new classes, in addition to featuring greater gender and ethnical diversity, each feature 30 unique skills to choose from instead of the single shared spellbook from Diablo. Certain abilities like the spin-to-win Whirlwind, the Paladin’s beneficial auras, and the Necromancer’s summoned minions would become staples in many of our games after. Finally, more powerful items, with bigger stat variety than ever, allowed everyone to truly express themselves through their choices in character class, gear, stats, and skills. Many of us here at Blizzard have fond memories of playing Diablo II. To us it represents childhood memories, friendships created, endless entertainment, and it inspired many of us to join the video game industry as we grew up. Read some of our favorite tales from the office. Blizzard Employees on Diablo II Rod Fergusson – Head of Franchise, Diablo What Diablo II means to me is the connection I have with my brother. He’s nine years older, so growing up I often felt like an only child, especially after he left home for university when I was eight. Over the years since, one of the ways that he and I have stayed connected was through video games. After all, he was the first person to introduce them to me. Flash forward to 2001 and we’re living 1400 miles apart – he’s in Winnipeg, Manitoba and I’m in Seattle, Washington. To stay connected, we’ve decided that every year I’m going to take a long weekend and fly to his place and play video games all day, every day for four days. That year, the plan was Diablo II. The day that I arrive, June 21, 2001 is the day that the Lord of Destruction expansion was released and so we stopped at the store on the way home from the airport to pick up two copies. For the next four days straight, we did nothing but play Diablo II co-op. After many hours, much caffeine and very little sleep, we actually finished the main game AND the expansion! That bonding experience was so meaningful to my brother and I that we still talk about it to this day. In fact, when I told him about my taking the job as the Head of the Diablo franchise at Blizzard, he texted me the following – “The Diablo II expansion Lord of Destruction came out on June 21, 2001. On some level that feels like a long time ago but also feels like we just did it. One of my better brother memories.” Lance Kimberlin – Product Manager, Battle.net & Online Products After the first time I heard (and jumped from) "Ah...Fresh meat!" I was in love with Diablo. I put Diablo II on hold at Babbage’s in 1999 and waited for what seemed like forever to finally receive my copy—Collector’s Edition #23097 of 70000. I still have the box, the disks, and the epic Diablo action figure. How many hours I spent in game? Uh . . . we’d rather not talk about it. Jesse McCree - Lead Game Designer, Diablo IV I love Diablo II because it's super fun! It came out early in my career and was one of the games that helped me grow as a game designer by leading me to understand the importance of simple but well executed game loops and controls. More than anything, I love the tone and world of Diablo II. It's still an inspiration as a Lead Game Designer for Diablo IV! Lily Gardner – Associate Game Producer, Diablo IV Putting what Diablo II means to me in concise words that don't amount to a novel may be somewhat difficult, but considering the impact it's had on both my love of games and my career within the games industry (especially here at Blizzard), it would be a shame not to try! In my younger years, I certainly was no stranger to games. I grew up watching my dad play games and code on his PC, and eventually transitioned into playing games of my own—from a Sailor Moon puzzle game to The Sims, and more. However, my first introduction to Blizzard was through Diablo II and Lord of Destruction. When I look back on the summer before I turned 12, I think of all the memories I made playing as an Assassin—this fierce, female whirlwind of strength and prowess—and exploring spider caverns, marveling at the level of blood and gore, and cursing my lack of foresight and forgetting to stock up on Town Portal scrolls. I also remember cackling endlessly about a certain secret level. . . . Much of that fondness for all things dark and demonic, as well as engrossing myself in a game for weeks on end, hasn't faded, and I attribute much of that to Diablo II. Without my experiences in Sanctuary, I may not have ever had the desire to work at Blizzard, or in games, or my somewhat gothic sense of taste may not have ever developed. So, thank you to Diablo II and all of the talented, incredible people who made it a reality! Diabolical influence Over the years, elements of Diablo II’s design would find their way into several other Blizzard games, whether because they solved a specific need for that game, or simply because they were just fun to bring over. Warcraft® III included random item drops selected from specific loot tables, and hero units who had experience levels and skill points to be distributed, allowing those heroes to be built to suit the player’s strategy. Later in World of Warcraft®, Diablo II’s iconic skill tree system would influence the talent system from the original release all the way through the Cataclysm™ expansion. Diablo II’s influence is palpable in everything from the three different skill trees per character class to the point distribution system, which allowed players to customize their characters and rewarded them for investing points in certain skills by unlocking more powerful abilities. Some of Diablo II’s most powerful enemies—Champions and Elites—terrorize the battlefield by challenging the heroes with an unpredictable array of randomized powers. The notion of adding random enemy power increases as a way to further challenge and reward players lives on today in World of Warcraft’s Mythic Keystone Dungeon affixes, Starcraft® II Co-op Commanders, and of course in Diablo® III. The secret to immortality Today, Diablo II remains popular, and the very dedicated players enjoying it in 2020 continue to find new ways to make it their own. While some prefer the dramatic changes that only the modding scene can provide, others simply choose to creatively engage in Diablo II with self-imposed restrictions. Some variants include: Naked Fury: No gear is allowed in a naked run. No one can pick up any items other than potions. Players agree to rely only on their class skills and teamwork to prevail. Each class brings unique utility that helps the group succeed where a single player would fail. Naked runs usually go up to the completion of the Pandemonium event and the conquering of the “Uber” bosses—all while wearing no items at all! Ironman tournament: Ironman is simple in concept. Eight players start new Hardcore characters. Everyone plays together until level 9 while only using items they find—no previously found gear allowed. At that point, the team goes back to town, goes hostile on each other, and then duels to the death. Last one standing is the winner. Speedruns: Different classes and modes (Hardcore or not) in addition to the randomly generated maps and items make Diablo II very exciting to speedrun. World records for fastest completions are broken frequently, as emergent strategies (and a little luck) keep firm records from going unchallenged for long. The Holy Grail: The goal of the Holy Grail quest is to single-handedly collect every set and unique item in the game (meaning you must see the item drop, no trading allowed!). Since this is mostly a single-player challenge, some players like to use spreadsheets or apps to keep track of already dropped items, while others use mods that add infinite stash capabilities to the game in order to keep every item in their impressive collections. Evil lives on As we look back on twenty years of Diablo II, we see how the lessons we learned from the game have shaped the last two decades at Blizzard, and we expect it to continue to shape how we make new games (especially Diablo games) in the future. No matter where you were when it all started, or when you decided it was time to play Diablo II—we’re glad to be able to share these memories with you. Here’s to twenty more years in Sanctuary, where brave souls continue to fight to rid the world of Terror, Hatred, and Destruction—while traversing eerie, dark places, and collecting the shiniest loot. Cheers! View the full article
  10. Free Pair Of Wings For Diablo II 20th Anniversary Event Today marks the 20th anniversary of Diablo II, and Diablo III players will be able to celebrate with a new in game event! Players who log into Diablo III on PC and Console right now will be rewarded with a free pair of Prime Evil Wings, which you can see in the screenshots below. As of writing this, the event has not yet officially started. Diablo II Remastered Announcement Rumors Squashed Community Manager PezRadar took to the Diablo Subreddit earlier this week to shut down rumors of a Diablo II remaster announcement. In his post, he also teased the upcoming Diablo II anniversary event in Diablo III. Originally Posted by PezRadar (Official Post) Hey all - We don't usually comment on rumors, but before this hype train goes off the rails we wanted to clarify that there are no upcoming Diablo announcements in June. The minions of hell are hard at work getting ready for the start of the next Diablo III Season, bringing you the next Diablo IV quarterly update (very) soon™, and we have some fun activities planned around the upcoming 20th anniversary of Diablo II.View the full article
  11. Diablo IV Quarterly Update - June 2020 This quarter's development update is now live and provides an in-depth look at recent playtest the dev team had in the Dry Steppes zone. It touches on a very wide range of topics and all the things the team looks at while playtesting the game. Originally Posted by Luis Barriga (Official Post) Table of Contents Introduction Team Playtest A Word About Blockout Storytelling Open World Multiplayer Items and Progression Other Thoughts To the Diablo Community, Hello, and welcome to our latest Diablo IV quarterly update! We are excited to share some of the progress we’ve made on the game today. As is the case with many other game and technology companies at the time of writing this, the Diablo IV team has fully transitioned to working from home. While the transition has introduced challenges, we feel very fortunate to be able to keep momentum going strong on the development of Diablo IV. TEAM PLAYTEST As with many other games, we organize the development of Diablo IV around team milestones. Often, these culminate with a build which we to play together and talk about as a team. For example, the milestones leading up to BlizzCon 2019 culminated in a team playtest of the demo that helped us unveil the game during the show. Besides getting an early look at what other team members had accomplished, this also allowed us to stress test the demo, catch additional bugs, and make improvements before the show. For our most recent milestone, we focused on blocking in all the elements in a region known as the Dry Steppes, complete with campaign content, open world elements, itemization, a PvP subzone, dungeons, and a cinematic to cap the completion of the region’s narrative. Our goal was to then have the team play the game from home over the course of two full days, and then spend some time analyzing data and discussing our reactions. Of course, we play the game all the time, but we’re often examining individual features or areas. Taking the time to play the same build together as a team over multiple days gives us a different perspective. It lets us see how all the current features harmonize over a longer playtime. We had this as a goal before we knew we were going to move to a work from home environment, but as it turned out, it ended up being a really good way to reconnect as a team. Similarly, we hope that chatting about this playtest and sharing some screenshots with you will provide context for future blog updates (or pique your curiosity about future topics). It’s worth noting that the playtest also didn’t represent the entirety of our progress. Other regions of the game are underway. The Dry Steppes is just the region where we made a concerted push to create a complete and cohesive experience that we could draw observations from. Let us know if you liked this approach to the blog (or if you didn’t) and we can adjust future updates accordingly. As always, your feedback is highly appreciated. A WORD ABOUT BLOCKOUT Blocking out or “grayboxing” levels allows us to play areas where the art isn’t finished. As part of development, visuals are often kept in rough form so the game team can cheaply test ideas and iterate on them. If something isn’t fun, it’s much cheaper to change or discard a “blockout” asset than a final one. When we share models or screenshots with you, they are often quite far along to adequately convey our vision for the game. We don’t typically show blockout assets as they don’t really do justice to the engine or the artistry of the folks on the team, but as part of showing the “behind the scenes” of how we make the game, we thought you’d appreciate seeing the transition of blockout assets into more polished ones. Some of the assets shown in this blog might not be final, so please bear that in mind as you check the screenshots below. A classic demon from concept, to blockout, to in-game art STORYTELLING A couple of things have evolved with how we deliver story in Diablo IV. First, we have conversations. In D3 we relied on UI panes with a character’s name and portrait. We’re experimenting with a mix of tool-generated and manually choreographed cameras to tackle conversations. For simple interactions with NPCs we bring the camera in closer to the characters (while still maintaining an overall isometric feel) and use a library of animations to deliver the general gist of the conversations. For more complex conversations, we take a similar camera approach but here the character’s movements and animations are more deliberately hand-crafted. This lets us deliver story moments that are complex while keeping you in the world as much as possible. Here’s a shot from one such interaction. A more zoomed in overhead camera helps us deliver simple story beats. The second storytelling method we are developing is real-time cutscenes (or RTCs). Here we grab your camera and treat the storytelling more like a movie, so we’re reserving this technique for the most important story moments. Having these be real-time has great advantages—we can show your character with their currently equipped armor as part of the scene, for example. But we can also display them at your current resolution and with your currently enabled graphics settings, so they end up feeling more seamless and like a part of the game. We showed you some early work on real time in-game cinematics during the BlizzCon demo. Our cinematics and engine teams have made a lot of improvements since then, so we were excited to see a fully produced cinematic serve as the climax to the Dry Steppes experience, and the team was not disappointed. Here’s a screengrab that the story and cinematics folks have given us the go ahead to share with you as it shouldn’t spoil the details of what’s to come. In-game cinematics in Diablo IV set a properly dark mood OPEN WORLD One of the main new features we are bringing to the Diablo series is the open world of Sanctuary. So, while you can concentrate on the story campaign and work through that, we have a variety of open world systems and pieces of content that you are also discovering along the way. If you want to take a break from the main campaign and go exploring, crafting, or PvPing, you are free to do so. During the playtest, we saw this variability in action quite a bit. On an average playthrough, team members took several hours to complete the campaign content for the region, but those who focused only on the story finished the arc in less than half the average time (and were, of course able to do side content after that). We think the ability to approach the game with a different mix of story and side content tailored to your own appetite will make playing (and re-playing) the campaign more enjoyable than it has been in previous ARPGs. Playtests like this one allow us to collect and aggregate data to help guide our design. This distribution heatmap indicates areas in the Dry Steppes that saw the most traffic. While we have many open world activities, such as crafting, events, world PvP, and side quests, perhaps the most popular open world feature was Camps. These are locations of importance that have been overrun by enemies, which once cleansed turn into friendly outposts with NPCs and a waypoint location. While there is a backstory to each camp, most of the storytelling is visual and quests don’t directly send you to them. For example, one of the camps in the zone was a town afflicted by a curse that turned villagers into piles of salt. Another was a crypt, haunted by a spirit that possesses the bodies of various undead—jumping from skeleton to skeleton until you defeat him. We really dug the impact of seeing the world change as you reclaim a small piece of Sanctuary and bring hope back to its common folk. We look forward to the Open World designers showing you more about this feature in the future! Camps start out as hostile and turn into small hubs with a waypoint and vendors after being completed Finally, mounts were another thing you could obtain during the playthrough. We really liked how the open world interacts with mounts—you could get to your objectives more quickly without trivializing travel or combat. Itemization for mounts also opened up a new axis of progression. One of my favorite things about mounts was customizing it by attaching a trophy to the saddle to signal to other players an obscure challenge in the zone that I had completed. Of course, there is more work to be done on mounts. For example, on navigation and tuning, it is currently too easy to get stuck on stray pieces of collision or to get dismounted by a random enemy projectile. These are all things that are just going to get better the more we play and tune the feature. MULTIPLAYER Fine tuning the right approach to multiplayer in Diablo IV has been challenging. Our goal has always been to incorporate elements from shared world games without the game ever feeling like it’s veering into massively multiplayer territory. To be clear, this is a philosophy rather than a tech limitation. We find that the game stops feeling like Diablo and the world feels less dangerous when you see other players too often or in too high numbers. Towns become social hubs where you can run into other players once key segments in the story are completed I’ll break down our experiences during the playtest with some examples. Dungeons and key story moments are always private—just the player and their party. Once story moments are complete and towns turned into social hubs, you’d run into a few people in town. While on the road, you’d sometimes run into a player here and there. And then finally, if you went to a location where a world event was happening, you would see a larger congregation of players trying to defend against an attack by a cannibal horde or trying to take down Ashava, the demonic world boss we showed at BlizzCon. It’s worth calling out that while some coordination is helpful during these events, you are never forced to join a party. Solo players can walk in, help complete the event, and claim a reward. We think this seamless approach to multiplayer is working well and look forward to sharing more about this approach with you. In our tests so far, the world feels alive and dynamic without compromising the feel of Diablo. And for players that do want to party up against the minions of Hell, we have new tools available to find a group, whether by activity or proximity in the game world. The World Boss Ashava shown during Blizzcon 2019 in Scosglen can spawn in the Dry Steppes as well ITEMS AND PROGRESSION One of the things that was very useful about our two-day playtest was that we could get better feedback on progression as there was a sense of permanence. Gear and skill choices you make on day one have an impact on day two (though some people chose to roll alts as we had multiple classes to test). A friend of mine used to say that Diablo is the game that you keep playing inside your head and Diablo IV is no different. In addition to the official play time allotted to the team during the playtest, I could feel the game lingering in my mind, thinking about the items that could possibly drop for my build, and talents I could finally unlock to get me those key skill interactions. You might have already read the developer blog by David Kim shortly after last BlizzCon. In it, he describes new affixes and itemization philosophies. We’ll have a beefier update on items later in the year, but in the meantime, here are some items that dropped during the playtest to whet your appetite! Various items from the playtest utilizing the new attribute system. Note that the item icons are not final art OTHER THOUGHTS The overall feedback from the team was that even at these early stages, Diablo IV is very fun to play. The classes especially are going down a promising path that we’re excited about. We’re taking cues from what makes the Barbarian’s Arsenal system or the Druid’s shapeshifting feel special and looking for ways to apply similar innovations to all classes (more on this in a future update). The playtest was also a really good way to put our tech through its paces. Since we played at home, we got to test the game on a lot of different setups—from graphics cards, to screen aspect ratios, to network speeds. We also had the opportunity to exercise our client-server technology, including deploying builds with fixes to bugs during the playtest. Of course, we still have a lot of work ahead of us and to be clear, we are not at an Alpha or Beta stage yet. We don’t typically discuss our early milestones publicly during the course of development, but we think it’s especially important to continue to share our progress during a year without a BlizzCon. Also, this was an important milestone for the team as we feel it corroborated that we have all the key ingredients for a great Diablo IV (of course, we’ll continue to seek feedback and iterate as we drive to completion). We hope you’ve enjoyed this update and, as always, we welcome you to share your thoughts on the platform of your choice—whether it’s our own forums, other sites, or social media, we read and appreciate your comments and feedback. We were happy to see lots of great discussion after our last blog (which seeded a bunch of conversations on our end as well). We are also excited to see the range of topics you want to hear about. Based on your response so far, we think talent trees are by far what you’re the most eager to discuss, so we’ll make sure to queue that up for our very next blog. Items continue to be a popular topic and there was also a lot of interest in music. We are shooting to have more updates around those topics later in the year. Let us know how that sounds. Thank you for taking the time to read this update. We can’t wait to share more of Sanctuary with you! Development is well underway outside the Dry Steppes. More of Sanctuary awaits in coming updates! -Luis Barriga- Game Director, Diablo IV Team View the full article
  12. Season 21 Begins July 3, Patch 2.6.9 Releasing June 23! Blizzard have officially announced the start date of Season 21 to be July 3rd, and plan to release patch 2.6.9 on June 23rd! In addition to this, we got a look at the new Stupendous Contraption pet and Industrial Portrait frame rewards for players who complete their seasonal journey! Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment (Official Post) Season 21 will begin July 3, shortly after our next Diablo III patch. Read on to learn more about the brand-new Season buff, new class sets, and a handful of item and skill adjustments coming in Patch 2.6.9! We are expecting Patch 2.6.9 to be released on June 23. Table of Contents Season Theme Season Cosmetic Rewards Season Journey Rewards Seasonal Conquests Haedrig's Gifts Patch Notes Items Skills Bug Fixes New Season Theme Wait, Nephalem. Do you sense that? Though the air remains tainted with a demonic brimstone stench, the world around you crackles with chaotic elemental energy. You have been deemed worthy, and the primal forces of Sanctuary manifest to aid you in the fight against the swelling darkness. With you as the champion of the elements, the burning hells will face the Trials of Tempests! During Season 21, your character will occasionally (every 90 seconds) channel an elemental power which unleashes into the environment for a limited time: Rain meteors from the skies around you. Breathe lightning. Summon a wall of flame. Release twisters of pure energy. Crush your foes under the weight of rolling snowballs. Seasonal Cosmetic Rewards Beginning with Season 17, we began re-introducing previous Seasonal rewards to make them available to players who may have missed them the first time around. For Season 21, this means awards originally available from Season 9 are returning to the Season Journey. However, we know it’s nice to have something new to aim for if you’ve participated in previous Seasons. We’re continuing to provide new End of Journey rewards as introduced in Season 17, with two new cosmetic rewards for those who complete the entirety of the Season journey. Prove your worth in the Trial of Tempests to earn the Stupendous Contraption pet and the Industrial Portrait Frame. In addition to the Chest and Gloves slots of the exclusive Conqueror Set, you’ll be able to earn the Pandemonium portraits and the cute and craggly Rocky pet first introduced in Season 9. Season Journey Rewards If you’ve been diligently slaying demons for the past few Seasons and reached Conqueror in the Season Journey each time, you’ve surely accrued a few extra stash tabs. You’ll earn one additional tab each Season by finishing the Conqueror tier, up to a maximum of five: Guardian of Sanctuary: Finish a level 70 Nephalem Rift on Torment XIII difficulty within 5 minutes. Gem of My Life: Level three Legendary Gems to level 55. All I Do is Win: Complete 2 Conquests this Season. Lose Yourself: Kill the Skeleton King at level 70 in under 30 seconds on Torment XIII difficulty. Money Ain’t a Thang: Slay Greed on Torment XIII difficulty. Treasure Goblins outside of Nephalem Rifts will sometimes open portals to Greed’s domain, The Vault. Take U There: Reach Greater Rift Level 60 Solo. Greater Rift keystones can be obtained from any Nephalem Rift guardian. Power Amplification: Use Kanai’s Cube to augment an Ancient Legendary item with a level 50+ gem. Cubic Reconfiguration: Use Kanai’s Cube to reforge a Legendary item. Seasonal Conquests Want to prepare your Conquest plan for Season 21? Here are the challenges you’ll face! For Curses!/Stars Align, pick any Cursed Chest event that requires killing monsters and defeat over 350 or more at level 70 on Torment X or higher. Also returning for Season 21 is Sprinter/Speed Racer, where you’re challenged to complete the entire Diablo III campaign from Act I to Act V at level 70 in under 1 hour! Next is Avarice/Avaritia, where all that glitters is gold—that is, if you can complete a 50 million gold streak outside of The Vault or its Inner Sanctum. We're also bringing Thrill/Superhuman, which requires completion of a Greater Rift level 45—solo and without any Set items equipped. And lastly we'll be bringing back Speed Demon/Need for Speed, meaning you'll need to beat a Torment X Nephalem Rift at level 70 in 2 minutes. Best of luck! Haedrig’s Gift Finally, the Class Sets rewarded for completing certain chapters in the Season Journey courtesy of Haedrig’s Gift have rotated once more. We’ve listed the available Sets below. For those new to Seasons, here’s how it works: Completing Chapters 2, 3, and 4 of the Season Journey will reward you with three of Haedrig’s Gifts. Each Gift contains a few pieces from one of your Class Sets. Players can only unlock one Class Set in this manner per Season across Hardcore and Non-Hardcore, so choose wisely! The set you receive depends on the class of the character you’re playing when you open each Haedrig’s Gift. To collect a full Class Set, you’ll need to open all three on the same character. Here are the sets granted by Haedrig’s Gift in Season 21: Barbarian - Might of the Earth Crusader - Thorns of the Invoker Demon Hunter - The Shadow's Mantle Monk - Monkey King's Garb Witch Doctor - Raiment of the Jade Harvester Wizard - Firebird's Finery Necromancer - Grace of Inarius Patch Notes Below you will find the final patch notes for the most recent update for Diablo III, Patch 2.6.9. Changes specifically from the last version of the PTR have been highlighted in RED. PATCH 2.6.9 Items Demon Hunter New Demon Hunter Set: Gears of Dreadlands 2-Piece Bonus Gain 4 seconds of Momentum when attacking with a Primary skill, at a maximum of 20 seconds. Your Primary skills deal 10% increased damage per second of Momentum.​ 4-Piece Bonus Casting Strafe against enemies will automatically shoot your last used primary skill, and also give 60% damage reduction while strafing and for 5 seconds after. While Strafing, you gain 8% increased movement speed for each second of Momentum. 6-Piece Bonus Your primary skills deal 10000% more damage Leonine Bow of Hashir Bolas have a <s>30% </s>100% chance on explosion to pull in all enemies within 24 yards, and also deal 100-150% increased damage. Emimei's Duffel Bolas now explode instantly and deal 150-175% increased damage. The Ninth Cirri Satchel Hungering Arrow <s>has 20-25%</s> is guaranteed to pierce and also deals 450-600% increased damage. Odyssey's End Enemies snared by your Entangling Shots take <s>20-25% </s>100-150% increased damage from all sources. Hunter's Wrath Your primary skills attack 30% faster and deal <s>45-60%</s> 150-200% increased damage. Holy Point Shot Impale throws 2 additional knives and deals 75-100% increased damage. Necromancer Developer's Note:With the adjustments coming in for a few past Necromancer sets and abilities, we will continue to evaluate the performance of the new set this season and may make additional adjustments in future seasons if we believe they are necessary. New Necromancer Set: Masquerade of the Burning Carnival 2-Piece Bonus Your Simulacrums no longer take damage, gains all runes, and its cooldown is refreshed when you die. 4-Piece Bonus While you have a Simulacrum, damage is reduced by 50%. Damage you take is split with your Simulacrums as well. 6-Piece Bonus Your Bone Spear deals 10,000% increased damage. Simulacrums gain triple this bonus. Grasps of Essence When an exploded corpse damages at least one enemy, Your Corpse Explosion deals <s>75-100%</s> 150-200% increased damage for 6 seconds, stacking up to 5 times. Haunted Visions Simulacrum now drains <s>5%</s> 1% of your maximum life every second and lasts <s>twice as long</s> forever. They can now duplicate Grim Scythe instead of Skeletal Mage. Razeth's Volition Skeletal Mage gains the effect of the Gift of Death and Singularity runes. You gain 35-60% damage reduction if your Essence is not full. Jesseth Arms 2-Piece Set Bonus: While your skeletons are commanded to attack a target, you deal 400% increased damage. Grace of Inarius 4-Piece Set Bonus: Bone Armor grants an additional <s>2%</s> 3% damage reduction per enemy hit. Pestilence Master's Shroud 6-Piece Set Bonus: Each corpse you consume grants you an Empowered Bone Spear charge that increases the damage of your next Bone Spear by 3300%. In addition, Corpse Lance and Corpse Explosion damage is increased by <s>1650%</s> 3300%. Crusader Shield of Fury This effect may stack up to <s>20</s> 10 times. General Stone of Jordan Added power: Each of your elemental's damage bonus is equal to your highest static elemental bonus to skill. Reaper's Wraps Added a 2-second internal cooldown to the Health globe effect. Mantle of Channeling Now works with the Necromancer's Siphon Blood. Convention of Elements Added "non-static" to the wording of the legendary power's description. The functionality is unchanged Return to Top Skill Changes Necromancer Simulacrum These will now warp to the Necromancer if they begin to move too far away from the player. This only works if the Necromancer is wearing the Masquerade of the Burning Carnival set or Haunted Visions. Simulacrums cannot use Grim Scythe (with Haunted Visions) or Skeletal Mage unless the Necromancer had either of those abilities while the Simulacrums were created. Final Service No longer consumes pets. Final Service now activates before Simulacrum's Self Sacrifice. Bone Prison Simulacrums now benefit from this passive skill. Serration Simulacrums now benefit from this passive skill. Corpse Explosion Damage increased from 350% to 1050%. Witch Doctor Spirit Barrage The Spectres from the Phantasm rune no longer benefit from pet bonuses. Return to Top Bug Fixes Necromancer Fixed an issue where Skeletal Mages were not attacking certain creatures PTR Specific: Note: The following issues were only live on the PTR, but we’re including the fixes here for visibility to indicate intended functionality on live. Seasonal effects no longer deal area damage. Seasonal buff resets if player exits and reenters a rift. Seasonal theme should no longer work in Set Dungeons. Fixed Maltorius' Petrified Spike dealing additive bonus damage instead of multiplicative. Fixed seasonal buff that sometimes may drop off whenever the player enters an invulnerable state. Changed seasonal buff to base its damage on the amount of kills. (not really a bug, more of a change) View the full article
  13. Blizzards Actions To Support Black Community, Colleagues, And Partners Blizzard's president J. Allen Brack posted an official blog detailing how they plan to support diversity and fight racism through education, support, and changing the workplace to be more equitable. Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment (Official Post) Blizzard community, Our world has a long history of racism. Humans create groups, and then create divisions between groups unlike themselves. Ironic how we need each other as social creatures, yet we developed the practice to ‘other’ humans who at first glance don’t look like what we see in the mirror. I have made it a personal obligation to educate myself about trauma others endure, and to work to change those experiences for them. Many within Blizzard come from a place of strong purpose, with a will to do in order to help society. Last year at BlizzCon, I made a commitment for Blizzard to do better. We pride ourselves on learning and growing, and doing something now that reflects our company and community values. I also said that our actions would matter more than our words—we have been publicly silent until now because action is the important part. Let me be clear: Blizzard stands in solidarity with those fighting against racism, because racism is as dangerous as any pandemic for those affected. We stand with those fighting against social and institutional structures that promote inequality among people of color. Last week, AB announced donations to the Equal Justice Initiative, the United Negro College Fund, and the Management Leaders of Tomorrow (MLT) to fight systemic racial inequality. At Blizzard, we are working on initiatives for our community and our workplace. In our games: For many years, we’ve had teams working with A.I. and machine learning to reduce toxicity and hate speech, as well as to help improve the overall gaming experience. Since January 1 this year, we’ve banned over 30,000 accounts for these reasons, as well as issued more than three million total hours of player suspensions. These penalties have notably improved our game environments: over the last two years, we’ve seen a 43% reduction in poor behavior reports, and a 59% reduction in the re-offense rate. And while this is progress, we’ve identified other places where we can use this technology and have more work to continue to do toward this effort. In our relationships: We are also reviewing our partnerships to identify opportunities to support Black-owned and diverse businesses, and to amplify the voices of Black content creators and influencers. Juneteenth: Today at Blizzard, we are observing Juneteenth with the goal of encouraging employees to take the time to be educated. We hosted a virtual session with a leader in our home city of Irvine, California, so employees can learn more about implicit bias, implications for law and policy, and how they can get involved in local efforts to drive change. We have also provided a list of resources to help coworkers self-educate, and shared ways to get involved in advocacy. Ongoing: We are stronger with more diverse views and experiences. We are committed to being a more equitable workplace, including how and where we recruit, our HR practices, and employee support. We will also put an ongoing employee education program into place. This program will include more training and education (with the materials purchased from Black and minority-owned businesses), and Blizzard-wide town halls with experts on allyship, advocacy, and racism. All of this work will continue to make Blizzard better, and play some small part in a larger, positive shift. To our Black community, colleagues, and partners, Blizzard stands with you. Black lives matter, today and always. - J. Allen Brack, president of Blizzard Entertainment View the full article
  14. Season 20 Ends June 21! The end date for Season 20 has officially been announced for 6/21 at 5:00pm in each region. Along with the end of Season 20 will come the end of the double goblin event as well. Originally Posted by PezRadar (Official Post) Hello all - Season 20 is coming to a close. Below are the times on when Season 20 will end for each region. North America - June 21 at 5pm PDT Europe - June 21 at 5pm CET Asia - June 21 at 5pm KST Along with these ending times, the Double Goblin event will also be ending. We will be providing a Season 21 Preview post in the coming weeks which will include the start time for the next season. View the full article
  15. Patch 2.6.9 PTR Updated 6/4 A new patch for the 2.6.9 PTR is now available! This update includes changes to the Season 21 Theme and the new Demon Hunter & Necromancer sets! Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment (Official Post) Update on June 4: 2.6.9 PTR has been updated. Please see below for changes with "Developer's Note" annotations in RED. Update on May 28: 2.6.9 PTR is now LIVE! We are looking forward to your feedback in the forums. Wait, Nephalem. Do you sense that? Though the air remains tainted with a demonic brimstone stench, the world around you crackles with chaotic elemental energy. You have been deemed worthy. The primal forces of Sanctuary manifest to aid you in the fight against the swelling darkness. Channel untethered bouts of flame, forked lightning, slicing wind, and biting snow against the minions of the Burning Hells during the Trials of Tempests! Our two-week PTR testing period for the 2.6.9 update begins May 28 and we're asking for your help to quell the tides of surging demons. Take a look at the preliminary patch notes below and start theorycrafting how you'll make the most of the brand-new season buff, two new class sets, and tons of Legendary item changes; Patch 2.6.9 will be arriving soon! Table of Contents PTR Focus & Details PTR Tips Patch Notes Seasons Items Skills Bug Fixes How to Participate in PTR PTR Character Copy Please note that this is a preview for PTR content, which is subject to change. PTR Focus & Details We’ll be conducting the Patch 2.6.9 PTR over the course of two weeks, starting Thursday, May 28. During this time there may be periodic maintenances, outages, hotfixes, or minor patches. There will be two PTR-unique buffs active to help you on your journey: increased Legendary drop rate and double Blood Shard drops. You can also buy new gear for testing from the special PTR vendor, Djank Mi'em, who will exchange Blood Shards for class-specific bags full of Legendary items that we'd love for you to test! To ensure that the most significant changes receive an ample amount of attention, we'd love for you to focus testing and feedback on the new Demon Hunter and Necromancer sets, Necromancer Skill changes, and the Legendary item changes. So that we can efficiently review your posts, feedback should be provided in the PTR Feedback forum while bug reports should be provided in the PTR Bug Report forum. PTR Testing Tips As with our previous PTRs, this testing period is short, so it's best to hit the ground running. Whether you’re a PTR veteran or newcomer, we thought we’d pass along a few tips to get you started. Because of the limited duration of this PTR, we ask that participants pick a particular portion of this update to focus on testing. For example, if you’re primarily a Wizard player, consider what changes impact the Wizard specifically. What you like best, what you think may still need adjustment, and what you’d want to see in the future (even if that may be beyond the scope of this patch) are all good questions to ask yourself. Prior to the start of PTR, consider stocking up on items like Puzzle Rings and Bovine Bardiches. Having these available after you import your character can make any necessary PTR farming much faster! Try to break things! Just tell us when you do so we can make sure that the patch launch is as smooth as possible. When providing feedback, focus less on a solution and more on your experience. How did the changes make you feel? Was there something “off” that you noticed? Did something seem wrong or insufficient? Suggestions are always welcome but identifying the issues themselves is most important. Patch Notes Below you will find the patch notes for the upcoming update for Diablo III, Patch 2.6.9. PATCH 2.6.9 Table of Contents: Seasons Items Monsters Bug Fixes Note: All changes apply to all versions of Diablo III, including PS4, Xbox One, Switch, and PC unless otherwise indicated. Please note that PTR is only available for PC and Mac users. Seasons Developer's Note: We’ve received a lot of feedback regarding the seasonal theme being difficult to track and that it sometimes didn’t feel like it was appearing or doing much to gameplay. We are adjusting the following: The elemental power will now occur every 90 seconds, down from 120 seconds. We have added in a buff to this effect to help better track it. Firewalls will now start at the caster and will become stationary once they hit a wall. Firewalls before were sometimes not appearing with the caster. Meteors will now track players and not stay at the initial location. We have also decreased the intervals between meteors. Damage has been slightly buffed for multiplayer. NOTE: We’ve also just found out about the season effects proccing Area Damage. This will eventually be fixed but did not make it into the PTR build. The elements have deemed you worthy. With you as their champion, the burning hells will face the Trials of Tempests! Your character will occasionally (every<s> 2 minutes</s> 90 seconds) channel an elemental power which unleashes into the environment for a limited time: Meteors rain from the skies around you. Breathe lightning. A wall of flame engulfs everything. Release twisters of pure energy. Crush your foes under the weight of rolling snowballs. Two unique new rewards, a portrait frame and a pet, will be granted to players who complete the Season 21 Journey. Items Demon Hunter New Demon Hunter Set: Gears of Dreadlands Developer's Note: We’ve adjusted the 2-Piece Bonus to address the Momentum and damage feedback from players. Momentum will now be a singular buff that affects all Primary skills. You will now be able to use multiple generators without losing the Momentum bonus when alternating between them. The 2-piece bonus will now also give 4 seconds per Primary attack, up to a maximum of 20 seconds. Momentum will also now be applied immediately when using a Primary Skill, instead of when it hits a target. These changes should help with damage output and allow for an easier time when building and maintaining Momentum. 2-Piece Bonus <s>Gain a Momentum stack when attacking with a Primary skill. Each Momentum stack lasts 2 seconds at a maximum duration of 10 seconds. Your Primary skills deal 10% more damage per stack of Momentum.</s> Gain 4 seconds of Momentum when attacking with a Primary skill, at a maximum of 20 seconds. Your Primary skills deal 10% increased damage per second of Momentum. Developer's Note: We’ve fixed a few issues on the 4-Piece Bonus. Players will now be able to proc bonuses and other powers such as Simplicity’s Strength’s healing bonus from their Primary skills coming from Strafe. You will now also be able to Strafe forever while shooting Primary abilities as you will no longer need Momentum for Strafe to fire off the last used Primary skill. Lastly, we’ve fixed an issue where Hungering Arrow was not piercing correctly when used with Strafe so players will be able to use this with the 4-Piece Bonus reliably. 4-Piece Bonus Casting Strafe against enemies will automatically shoot your last used primary skill, and also give 60% damage reduction while strafing and for 5 seconds after. While Strafing, you <s>move faster per stack of Momentum</s> gain 8% increased movement speed for each second of Momentum. 6-Piece Bonus Your primary skills deal 10000% more damage Leonine Bow of Hashir Bolas have a <s>30% </s>100% chance on explosion to pull in all enemies within 24 yards, and also deal 100-150% increased damage. Emimei's Duffel Bolas now explode instantly and deal 150-175% increased damage. The Ninth Cirri Satchel Hungering Arrow <s>has 20-25%</s> is guaranteed to pierce and also deals 450-600% increased damage. Odyssey's End Enemies snared by your Entangling Shots take <s>20-25% </s>100-150% increased damage from all sources. Hunter's Wrath Your primary skills attack 30% faster and deal <s>45-60%</s> 150-200% increased damage. Holy Point Shot Impale throws 2 additional knives and deals 75-100% increased damage. Necromancer New Necromancer Set: Masquerade of the Burning Carnival 2-Piece Bonus Your Simulacrums no longer take damage, gains all runes, and its cooldown is refreshed when you die. 4-Piece Bonus While you have a Simulacrum, damage is reduced by 50%. Damage you take is split with your Simulacrums as well. 6-Piece Bonus Your Bone Spear deals 10,000% increased damage. Simulacrums gain triple this bonus. Grasps of Essence When an exploded corpse damages at least one enemy, Your Corpse Explosion deals <s>75-100%</s> 150-200% increased damage for 6 seconds, stacking up to 5 times. Haunted Visions Simulacrum now drains <s>5%</s> 1% of your maximum life every second and lasts <s>twice as long</s> forever. They can now duplicate Grim Scythe instead of Skeletal Mage. Razeth's Volition Skeletal Mage gains the effect of the Gift of Death and Singularity runes. You gain 35-60% damage reduction if your Essence is not full. Jesseth Arms 2-Piece Set Bonus: While your skeletons are commanded to attack a target, you deal 400% increased damage. Grace of Inarius 4-Piece Set Bonus: Bone Armor grants an additional <s>2%</s> 3% damage reduction per enemy hit. Pestilence Master's Shroud 6-Piece Set Bonus: Each corpse you consume grants you an Empowered Bone Spear charge that increases the damage of your next Bone Spear by 3300%. In addition, Corpse Lance and Corpse Explosion damage is increased by <s>1650%</s> 3300%. Crusader Shield of Fury This effect may stack up to <s>20</s> 10 times. General Stone of Jordan Added power: Each of your elemental's damage bonus is equal to your highest static elemental bonus to skill. Reaper's Wraps Added a 2-second internal cooldown to the Health globe effect. Mantle of Channeling Now works with the Necromancer's Siphon Blood. Convention of Elements Added "non-static" to the wording of the legendary power's description. The functionality is unchanged Skill Changes Necromancer Developer's Note: We’ve adjusted some non-intended behaviors with Simulacrum while also addressing the frustration of them getting split off from the Necromancer at times. Simulacrum These will now warp to the Necromancer if they begin to move too far away from the player. This onl works if the Necromancer is wearing the Masquerade of the Burning Carnival set or Haunted Visions. Simulacrums cannot use Grim Scythe (with Haunted Visions) or Skeletal Mage unless the Necromancer had either of those abilities while the Simulacrums were created. Final Service No longer consumes pets. Final Service now activates before Simulacrum's Self Sacrifice. Bone Prison Simulacrums now benefit from this passive skill. Serration Simulacrums now benefit from this passive skill. Corpse Explosion Damage increased from 350% to 1050%. Witch Doctor Spirit Barrage The Spectres from the Phantasm rune no longer benefit from pet bonuses. Bug Fixes General Fixed a rare issue where players could enter a locked party and become unable to enter games or change game settings Necromancer Fixed an issue where Skeletal Mages were not attacking certain creatures How to Participate To participate in the public test, you must have a Diablo III game license attached to a Battle.net account in good standing (i.e. one that hasn't been suspended or banned). In addition, you will also need to download and install the Blizzard Battle.net desktop app if you have not already done so. Step 1: Restart the Battle.net desktop app. Step 2: Navigate to the Diablo III tab on the left-hand menu. Step 3: On the Diablo III screen, there is a drop-down menu right above the "Play" button (note that this may say "Install" if you do not have Diablo III currently installed). Select "PTR: Diablo III" from this drop-down menu before proceeding. Step 4: Click Install to begin the installation process. Your PTR account will be created automatically if you do not already have one. The PTR is available in all supported languages, and accounts from all regions are eligible to participate. For additional assistance with installing and launching the PTR, click here. PTR Character Copy The option to copy your existing Diablo III characters from your live account to the PTR will be available and can be done directly through the PTR client. However, only one region per account can be copied at a time. So, if you choose to copy characters from your account in a different region, any previously copied PTR characters will be lost. Step 1: Log into the live game and then log out. Step 2: Log into PTR client and create a level 1 character. After you're done, return to the main character screen. Step 3: Click on the "PTR Copy" button located in the upper right-hand corner. (The PTR Copy button will not appear in-game until you have created a new level 1 character.) Step 4: Select your region. Step 5: Click "Copy." This will copy all characters on your account from the selected region. Step 6: You will be disconnected from the PTR client. Step 7: Log back in. Your copied characters will be available for play. Please note that you can only copy characters from one gameplay region at a time. If you choose to copy characters from a different region, any previously copied PTR characters will be lost. In addition, you can only copy characters over to your PTR account once every 24 hours. Attempting to copy characters before this cooldown is up will result in an error. As this is a test server, please anticipate uneven game performance, and note that restarts and downtime may occur without warning. Thank you, and we look forward to your feedback! View the full article

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