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  1. DiabloFans

    Season 16 Launch

    Season 16 The theme for Season 16 is the Season of Grandeur! For the duration of the season, all Seasonal characters will benefit from the legendary power of the Ring of Royal Grandeur. It should be noted that this buff does not stack with additional Rings of Royal Grandeur, whether they be equipped directly on your character or via the Jewelry slot in Kanai’s Cube. Also, this is the first season in which the seasonal buff will not affect non-seasonal characters. Season 16 begins on Friday, January 18 at 5:00 p.m. PsT in North America, 5:00 p.m. CET in Europe, and 5:00 p.m. KST in Asia. For time conversion, see this site. Haedrig's Gift The starter sets awarded by Haedrig's Gift for Season 16 are listed below. Completing chapter 2, 3, and 4 of the Season Journey will reward you with three Haedrig's Gifts. Each gift contains a few pieces from one of your Class Sets. You may only unlock one Class Set in this manner per season across Hardcore and Non-Hardcore. Barbarian – Immortal King’s Call Crusader – Seeker of the Light Demon Hunter – Natalya’s Vengeance Monk – Uliana’s Stratagem Necromancer – Trag’Oul’s Avatar Witch Doctor – Spirit of Arachyr Wizard – Vyr’s Amazing Arcana Patch 2.6.4 Changes Patch 2.6.4 added many new quality of life changes, and the patch also makes sweeping balance changes to many of the existing class sets! You can view a complete list of changes here. See below for a highlight of the much requested quality of life changes: Five (5) additional Armory tabs have been added for all characters, bringing the total to 10 Legendary Potions are no longer stored in player inventory and can be accessed or changed by right-clicking on the potion icon in the action bar Greater Rift Keystones are now stored in the Materials tab Any existing Greater Rift Keystones in both inventory and stash have been automatically moved Paragon points can no longer be swapped while a Greater Rift is open Players can now be matched into public games where a Greater Rift is open Players who join in this manner will not be able to enter the active Rift, and players inside the Rift will be able to continue with no additional difficulty scaling until the run has been completed Primal Legendaries are now marked by a red beam when they drop Primal Legendaries on the ground are now indicated by a red pentagram icon on the mini-map Primal Legendaries now have a red border and updated background on their icons Level With A Cause #LevelWithACause (#LWAC), a coalition of streamers from both Twitch and YouTube, will be uniting once again for a 6th charity fundraising event during the first three days of the Season 16 in Diablo 3. These streams will be viewable on several Twitch and Youtube channels. Viewers will be directed to donate to Save The Children during these livestreams. #LWAC 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. The LWAC team has raised over $40,000 to date for deserving charities such as St Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Take This, and Save The Children. 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. 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. During the Level With A Cause event, many participating streams will be featured below! View the full article
  2. Arriving This Fall—Four New Collectible Blizzard Books Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment (Official Post) We’re pleased to announce four new books coming to stores this fall. Whether you’re into Hearthstone, Diablo, or World of Warcraft (or all the above), there’s something special waiting for you within the pages of these collectible volumes. The Art of Hearthstone: Year of the Kraken Something stirs in the dark . . . The second volume of The Art of Hearthstone dives deep into the Year of the Kraken, the first year of Hearthstone’s standard format. Enjoy 144 pages consisting of hundreds of illustrations from the corruptive cults of Whispers of the Old Gods, the glamourous disco of One Night in Karazhan, and the turf wars of Means Streets of Gadgetzan. Year of the Kraken goes into detail on the Hearthstone team’s artistic process for card art, game boards, and other visual designs, while also exploring the challenges and triumphs of creating a game enjoyed by millions of players around the globe. Purchase the first volume today on the Blizzard Gear Store or at your favorite local bookstore. The Art of Diablo For more than 20 years, the artists behind Diablo have conjured new visions of the High Heavens and the Burning Hells, built nightmarish corridors filled with monsters and demons, and unleashed swarms of malevolent creatures upon players worldwide. The Art of Diablo plunges into the concept, design, and environmental art that has defined the world of Sanctuary and the Eternal Conflict at the core of the Diablo series. The Cinematic Art of World of Warcraft The drums of war thunder once again . . . Over the course of World of Warcraft’s 15-year history, each new chapter in the game’s story has been bolstered through an array of epic cinematics; The Cinematic Art of World of Warcraft goes behind the scenes with the team who built these movies. With never-before-seen concept art and accounts of the creative and technical process, this is the definitive visual gallery of how countless artists helped bring the world of Azeroth to life in incredible detail and motion. World of Warcraft Pop-Up Book Choose your faction, pick your weapon, and prepare for an astonishing vision of the world of Azeroth like you’ve never seen before! Built by best-selling paper engineer Matthew Reinhart, the World of Warcraft Pop-Up Book brings the beloved locations of Warcraft to life, from the classic faction hubs of Orgrimmar and Stormwind, to the battle-scarred lands of Lordaeron and Teldrassil, and even the new capital cities of Kul Tiras and Zandalar! Each page unfolds into an eye-popping treat, depicting iconic sites with brand-new art and interactive pieces. Keep an eye on your local booksellers or online shops for when pre-sales go live. View the full article
  3. DiabloFans

    Patch 2.6.4 Now Live!

    Patch 2.6.4 Now Live! Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment (Official Post) An update to Diablo III patch 2.6.4 is now live in the Americas for PC / Mac! Check out the full patch notes below to learn about all the latest changes. Important: Please note that you will not be prompted to download the patch until it is live in your home region. If you are logging in from a European or Asian client, you will need to wait for this patch to release in that region before it can be installed. Additionally, if your home region is in the Americas, you will be unable to log into Europe or Asia using Global Play after the update is live until those regions have also patched. PATCH 2.6.4 - v2.6.4.54724 Visit our Bug Report forum for a list of known issues. If you are experiencing technical issues with the patching process, connecting to Blizzard Services after installing the patch, or errors while playing a newly-patched game, please visit our support site or post in the Technical Support forum for assistance. Table of Contents: General Greater Rifts Seasons Class Set Changes All Classes Barbarian Crusader Demon Hunter Monk Necromancer Witch Doctor Wizard General Quality of Life Philosophy For this patch, we wanted to include a few frequently requested Quality of Life changes and focused on better celebrating and indicating Primal Legendary drops. Five (5) additional Armory tabs have been added for all characters, bringing the total to 10 Legendary Potions are no longer stored in player inventory and can be accessed or changed by right-clicking on the potion icon in the action bar Greater Rift Keystones are now stored in the Materials tab Any existing Greater Rift Keystones in both inventory and stash have been automatically moved Primal Legendaries are now marked by a red beam when they drop Primal Legendaries on the ground are now indicated by a red pentagram icon on the mini-map Primal Legendaries now have a red border and updated background on their icons Greater Rifts Philosophy The gameplay of micro-managing Paragon points during the course of a Greater Rift doesn't feel like especially engaging gameplay, nor was it consistent with the other existing rules of entering a Greater Rift. In addition, the below change to matchmaking is to make it much easier for all players to find groups for Greater Rifts, as the previous window (only between Greater Rifts) is typically very small. Paragon points can no longer be swapped while a Greater Rift is open Players can now be matched into public games where a Greater Rift is open Players who join in this manner will not be able to enter the active Rift, and players inside the Rift will be able to continue with no additional difficulty scaling until the run has been completed Seasons Season 16: Season of Grandeur The buff for Season of Grandeur has been implemented This buff gives all Seasonal players the legendary power from Ring of Royal Grandeur This buff does not stack with additional Ring of Royal Grandeur (either equipped or in Kanai's Cube) Unlike previous Seasonal buffs, this buff will not apply to Non-Seasonal players When completing a Greater Rift level 70 solo for the first time in a Season, a Primal Legendary is guaranteed to drop from the Rift Guardian Class Set Changes Philosophy We are taking another tuning pass across all class sets to improve class and set diversity at higher level Greater Rifts. Some of these values have been adjusted per our observations as well as player feedback during the 2.6.4 PTR. Thanks for testing! All Classes Legacy of Nightmares The (2) Set bonus has been increased from 100% to 750% Barbarian The Legacy of Raekor The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 2800% to 5500% Immortal King's Call The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 1500% to 4000% Might of the Earth The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 5600% to 20000% Wrath of the Wastes The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 3000% to 10000% Crusader Thorns of the Invoker The (2) Set bonus has been increased from 140% to 350% The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 5400% to 15000% Roland's Legacy The (4) Set bonus has been increased from 3300% to 13000% The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 50% increased Attack Speed to 75% Seeker of the Light The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 2000% Blessed Hammer damage to 12000% Demon Hunter Embodiment of the Maruader The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 3000% to 12000% Unhallowed Essence The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 100% to 350% Natalya's Vengeance The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 3500% to 14000% The Shadow's Mantle The (2) Set bonus has been increased from 1200% to 6000% The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 50000% to 75000% Monk Uliana's Strategem The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 2100% to 9000% Inna's Mantra The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 150% to 750% Monkey King's Garb The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 1000% to 1500% Raiment of a Thousand Storms The (2) Set bonus has been increased from 100% to 400% The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 13000% Dashing Strike damage to 60000% The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 1300% Spirit Generator damage to 6000% Necromancer Trag'Oul's Avatar The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 3300% to 3800% Witch Doctor Spirit of Arachyr The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 4500% to 9000% Helltooth Harness The (2) Set bonus has been increased from 1500% to 3000% The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 4400% to 9000% Raiment of the Jade Harvester The (2) Set bonus has been increased from 560 seconds to 3500 seconds The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 1650 seconds to 10000 seconds Zunimassa's Haunt The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 5500% to 15000% Wizard Tal Rasha's Elements The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 750% to 2000% Delsere's Magnum Opus The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 3800% to 8500% Vyr's Amazing Arcana The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 50% bonus damage to 100% View the full article
  4. DiabloFans

    Challenge Rift - Week 82

    Challenge Rift - Week 82 Challenge Rift Week 82 is live! This week the Challenge Rift features a variety of different Monk builds! As a reminder, do not complete challenge rift 82 until after Season 16 starts on Friday! You can open the challenge rift cache on your freshly made seasonal character, and jump start your seasonal journey! If you are curious how Challenge Rift builds are chosen each week, you can view this official blog post! Challenge Rift 82 - NA by OSW_Zenkiki Wave of Light Wall of Light Dashing Strike Quicksilver Mystic Ally Air Ally Mantra of Healing Circular Breathing Sweeping Wind Inner Storm Epiphany Desert Shroud Harmony Beacon of Ytar Exalted Soul Seize the Initiative Challenge Rift 82 - EU by OSW_Zenkiki Crippling Wave Breaking Wave Tempest Rush Bluster Inner Sanctuary Intervene Exploding Palm Essence Burn Cyclone Strike Soothing Breeze Seven-Sided Strike Fulminating Onslaught Mythic Rhythm Beacon of Ytar Seize the Initiative Near Death Experience Challenge Rift 82 - Asia by OSW_Zenkiki Deadly Reach Piercing Trident Wave of Light Explosive Light Inner Sanctuary Sanctified Ground Exploding Palm Essence Burn Mystic Ally Air Ally Mantra of Healing Heavenly Body Exalted Soul Chant of Resonance The Guardian's Path Near Death Experience View the full article
  5. DiabloFans

    Challenge Rift - Week 81

    Challenge Rift - Week 81 Challenge Rift Week 81 is live! This week the Challenge Rift features some non-set Wizard builds! If you are curious how Challenge Rift builds are chosen each week, you can view this official blog post! Challenge Rift 81 - NA by OSW_Zenkiki Electrocute Surge of Power Arcane Orb Frozen Orb Ice Armor Frozen Storm Black Hole Spellsteal Slow Time Point of No Return Teleport Fracture Power Hungry Cold Blooded Audacity Dominance Challenge Rift 81 - EU by OSW_Zenkiki Spectral Blade Barrier Blades Arcane Orb Arcane Orbit Teleport Safe Passage Slow Time Time Warp Magic Weapon Deflection Storm Armor Scramble Arcane Dynamo Audacity Unstable Anomaly Illusionist Challenge Rift 81 - Asia by OSW_Zenkiki Familiar Arcanot Arcane Torrent Flame Ward Meteor Meteor Shower Ice Armor Ice Reflect Teleport Safe Passage Magic Weapon Force Weapon Astral Presence Blur Unwavering Will Evocation View the full article
  6. DiabloFans

    Imperius Enters The Nexus

    Imperius Enters The Nexus Imperius, a long anticipated and wanted hero, has entered the Nexus in Heroes of the Storm! Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment (Official Post) New Hero: Imperius (Warrior) Leader of the Angiris Council and Aspect of Valor, Imperius has valiantly led the armies of the High Heavens to innumerous victories over the demons of the Burning Hells. While his methods are exact and severe, there is no greater defender of righteousness in the entirety of creation. Trait Valorous Brand Each Basic Ability marks enemy Heroes hit for 10 seconds. Basic Attacks consume the target's marks, dealing 30% bonus damage per mark. Basic Abilities Celestial Charge (Q) Lunge towards a targeted direction and stab, dealing 35 damage. If an enemy Hero is hit, Channel to Stun for 1 second and deal 70 additional damage when it fully finishes. Solarion’s Flare (W) Release a fiery wave that deals 100 damage. Enemies hit by the center take 50 bonus damage and are Slowed by 40% for 3 seconds. Molten Armor (E) Shroud Imperius in flames for 3 seconds, striking a nearby enemy for 19 damage every 0.25 seconds. Imperius heals for 100% of the damage dealt, with healing doubled versus Heroes. Heroic Abilities Angelic Armaments (R) Summon a ring of blazing swords that grants 1000 Shield for 3 seconds.If the Shield lasts the full duration, this ability can be reactivated within 5 seconds to launch 6 swords toward an area, each dealing 140 damage to the first enemy hit. Wrath of the Angiris (R) After 0.75 seconds, charge in the target direction, lifting the first enemy Hero hit into the Heavens. While in the air, Imperius can steer the landing location by moving.After 2 seconds, slam the target into the ground, dealing 375 damage and Stunning them for 1 second. View the full article
  7. Diablo Year In Review I can say with confidence that 2018 was certainly an interesting year for Diablo news. Between the launch of the Diablo 3: Eternal Collection on Nintendo Switch and the announcement of Diablo: Immortal, this year has had many ups and downs for fans of the franchise. Before we look forward expectantly into 2019, let's take a review of all the big news stories from this last year! Big Names Leave Blizzard The first half of the year was rather light on news as Season 12 ended and Season 13 began. In hindsight, this quiet period was just the calm before the storm, and the news of Travis Day leaving Blizzard after 13 years was an ominous foreshadowing of what was to come later in the year. In addition to the departure of Travis Day, Mike Morhaim stepped down as President of Blizzard Entertainment and announced that his replacement would be J. Allen Brack. Themed Seasons Season 14 introduced the concept of Themed Seasons into Diablo 3 with the Season of Greed. During this season, all goblins spawned outside of The Vault would spawn in pairs. Season 15 would later introduce the Boon of the Horadrim, where all Horadric Caches earned from bounties would be doubled. Themed Seasons were a clever way to change up the existing seasonal structure and incentivize players to return with each subsequent season. The Future Of Diablo The lead up to BlizzCon began with a video from Associate Community Manager Brandy Camel announcing that there were multiple Diablo projects in the works, and some announcements were soon to follow. Netflix Diablo Series As the hype began to build for what was to come at BlizzCon, rumors of a Diablo Netflix Series surfaced. We still know little about this series, but we do know that it is being developed with Andrew Cosby. Diablo 3 On Nintendo Switch The Diablo 3: Eternal Collection came to the Nintendo Switch on November 2nd, bringing a Loot Goblin Amiibo and exclusive cosmetic items with it! Those that have played the game on Nintendo Switch agree that it's a great way to enjoy Diablo 3 on the go. Leading Up To BlizzCon Hype for a potential announcement of a new installment in the Diablo franchise was at an all time high in the months leading up to BlizzCon. All signs were pointing to something big being announced, and Blizzard had to step in to curb expectations. Diablo: Immortal During the opening ceremony at BlizzCon, Blizzard announced Diablo: Immortal to a disappointed audience. Several of us got a chance to play the demo on the show floor, and our impressions were similar. Blizzard faced back-lash from fans, and had to reiterate that multiple Diablo projects were in the works. Looking To The Future This past year has been a rough year for fans of the franchise, but the promise of new announcements in 2019 has the player base hesitantly optimistic. Only time will tell if 2019 will be a good year for Diablo or not, but Season 16 adding an interesting seasonal theme seems to be a good start. View the full article
  8. DiabloFans

    Challenge Rift - Week 80

    Challenge Rift - Week 80 Challenge Rift Week 80 is live! This week the Challenge Rift features a variety of Barbarian builds! If you are curious how Challenge Rift builds are chosen each week, you can view this official blog post! Challenge Rift 80 - NA by OSW_Zenkiki Frenzy Berserk Whirlwind Dust Devils Leap Call of Arreat Wrath of the Berserker Striding Giant Furious Charge Merciless Assault Call of the Ancients Together as One Rampage Boon of Bul-Kathos Unforgiving Brawler Challenge Rift 80 - EU by OSW_Zenkiki Furious Charge Merciless Assault Hammer of the Ancients Smash Wrath of the Berserker Insanity Ground Stomp Wrenching Smash Threatening Shout Falter Battle Rage Bloodshed Nerves of Steel Rampage Ruthless Berserker Rage Challenge Rift 80 - Asia by OSW_Zenkiki Hammer of the Ancients Smash Furious Charge Merciless Assault Wrath of the Berserker Insanity Battle Rage Bloodshed War Cry Impunity Ignore Pain Iron Hide Boon of Bul-Kathos Tough as Nails Brawler Rampage View the full article
  9. As of right now, the new Loot Goblin amiibo has finally released for the Nintendo Switch! You can get yours by heading over to Gamestop. Here's what they do, and how they work: Originally Posted by Nevalistis (Official Post) In order to scan an an amiibo, first you’ll need to open an amiibo Portal. By default, all characters have an amiibo Portal item available to them in their stash. Activate this item from your inventory to open a Rainbow Portal. Scanning the Loot Goblin amiibo will transform this Rainbow Portal into a shimmering golden portal that will take you to The Vault—the mysterious and treasure-filled realm of the Treasure Goblins and their enigmatic Baroness, Greed. Scanning any other amiibo can only be done outside of town and will spawn a Champion pack of enemies—a challenging group of monsters with special powers and improved treasure. All amiibo can be scanned once per day each, so be sure to take advantage of those extra challenges, loot, and first-class ticket to The Vault as often as you can! View the full article
  10. Up until this point, I have felt that discussing Diablo: Immortal was completely fruitless. It has been roughly two months since the catastrophe that was the announcement at BlizzCon, and only now has the dust settled enough for me to feel comfortable giving my impressions of the game. To me, the story of Diablo: Immortal is not the story of a mobile game people don’t want. Rather, it’s the story of a shifting culture within Blizzard and how that has changed their public perception as a company. Impressions My impressions of the game start long before I ever got my hands on it, or even before the reveal announcement at the opening ceremony. For me, BlizzCon 2018 was my first BlizzCon. I’ve always watched form afar wishing that I could be there in person, and with rumors over the past couple years of a new Diablo project in the works, I knew I had to go this year. Clearly, the announcement of Immortal was not what I wanted as a die-hard Diablo fan. I remember feeling incredibly disappointed after the opening ceremony ended, and it took me several hours to work up enough enthusiasm to go halfheartedly try the demo. I picked the Monk out of the available three classes and jumped right in. The initial demo area was a tutorial with Deckard teaching you how to play. After defeating a wave of enemies, a new ability would unlock for you to use until your full build was available. Once the tutorial was complete, the game led you out into an open area akin to the Fields of Misery in Diablo 3. It was then that I ran across two of my friends that I entered the demo area with, and it happened seamlessly. Loot in this area worked like it does in Diablo 3, with each of us having our own version of drops that nobody else could steal. After working through the large zone, and killing many rare packs along the way, you finally entered a dungeon that would queue you up with other nearby players. At the end of said dungeon was a difficult boss that had a set mechanics you needed to learn in order to survive. I went into the demo wanting to hate this game as much as I could, but by the time I got to the end I realized I was having fun. Unlike Neinball’s experience with the controls, the game felt immediately accessible to me. Before I reached the half-way point in the demo, I found myself combing my abilities seamlessly. The gameplay was a much faster pace than I was expecting, and the game played better than I could have imagined. As for performance, the game was running on some kind of Android device. The framerate felt very smooth, and the game looked great! I’m curious how the game will run on my iPhone X, especially with much more enemies on the screen then the demo allowed. Overall, I really enjoyed my time with the game, and I can’t deny the fact that it was fun to play. Would I have preferred to have been playing a new Diablo game on PC? Of course, there is no denying that; however, that will happen in good time as Blizzard has continuously pointed out since BlizzCon. With that said, I’m looking forward to playing Immortal while I’m stuck in airports or indisposed in the bathroom. A Shifting Blizzard To me, the true story of Diablo: Immortal isn't just that it's a mobile game, but the story of a shifting culture within Blizzard. This concept has been reported on by Jason Schreier over on Kotaku and is further reinforced by the recent Heroes of the Storm announcement. We know that Blizzard is currently working on multiple new mobile titles, and regardless of how you feel about mobile gaming, this appears to line up with a rising initiative within Blizzard to cut costs and ship more games. Whether this change is coming from within the company or as outside pressure from Activision is currently unclear. Personally, I’m not against mobile gaming and I feel like it has a valuable place within the industry. For example, I have played roughly two hours of Stardew Valley on my phone each week over the past couple months (despite also owning the game on PC), simply because it’s a convenient place to enjoy a game that I love. I have no doubt that Blizzard can, and will, make really great mobile games, but whether those games will be for me is yet to be seen. As a fan of Blizzard, I want more titles on the PC and I want to see a refocusing of their efforts in that space. I want to see Blizzard hold back games that aren’t ready because I would rather wait months, or even years, to have a finished game than get a game that was shipped to early. Blizzard's culture and priorities seem to be in a state of flux, and I believe it’s possible for them to recover the good grace they have with fans. However, it is going to require a fairly significant change in trajectory from where they are currently heading. Diablo: Immortal is a Diablo game that some may love and others may hate, but it's not the future of franchise. The Diablo fan-base has their eyes set to the horizon for the next big Diablo game. Only time will tell if Blizzard is able to deliver on an experience their fans have been patiently waiting for. View the full article
  11. DiabloFans

    Challenge Rift - Week 78

    Challenge Rift - Week 78 Challenge Rift Week 78 is live! This week, the Challenge Rifts feature two no-set demon hunter builds, and a final one focusing on a Natalya's Rain of Vengeance setup! If you are curious how Challenge Rift builds are chosen each week, you can view this official blog post! Challenge Rift 78 - NA by OSW_Zenkiki Evasive Fire Focus Multishot Arsenal Vengeance Seethe Vault Tumble Smoke Screen Displacement Preparation Invigoration Steady Aim Ballistics Blood Vengeance Ambush Challenge Rift 78 - EU by OSW_Zenkiki Grenade Cluster Grenades Cluster Arrow Cluster Bombs Sentry Spitfire Turret Vault Tumble Companion Boar Companion Vengeance Seethe Grenadier Custom Engineering Numbing Traps Thrill of the Hunt Challenge Rift 78 - Asia by OSW_Zenkiki Preparation Punishment Marked for Death Contagion Companion Bat Companion Rain of Vengeance Dark Cloud Vengeance Seethe Vault Action Shot Cull the Weak Thrill of the Hunt Awareness Ambush View the full article
  12. I know this article is coming late, being over a month since BlizzCon, but I felt that it was almost impossible to discuss Diablo: Immortal immediately following the announcement. Since then, outright anger has condensed into solid criticisms and vitriolic comments have made way for thought out concerns. I feel there are some actual good points to Immortal and there are things we could be excited for, but there are obviously many issues to be concerned about as well. The Good There are some positives when it comes to Immortal. The feeling from people who had the chance to play the game at BlizzCon seemed largely positive, and demo exit poll discussions with the devs at the show were encouraging. Personally, I found the game to be fun as the Monk and Barbarian, but the Wizard needed a lot of work. The flow of gameplay is quick-paced, faster than D2 while not as frantic as D3. The "cooldown resource" overall felt okay once I had adapted to it. There was some discussion with devs about maybe adding a function to certain skills that would reduce the cooldowns on other skills as a kind of "generator" mechanic. I like the idea of this approach as most end game builds in any ARPG are largely disconnected from its resource system, whereas in other styles of RPG resource mechanics play more into specific timing or rotation than what we've seen in other Diablo titles. I also wanted to touch briefly on the controls for Immortal. One issue I see that has come up again and again about Immortal is the controls. Plenty of other content creators have weighed in on it already and the only thing I have to add to the discussion is that it took me about 5-6 playthroughs before I started getting a feel for them. By the 10th playthrough the button placements were second nature and the game felt a lot more refined. There will definitely be a learning curve and not just for skill interactions or class mechanics, but each skill had its own targeting or aiming mechanic and learning all of those will take time in figuring out different builds once we actually get our hands on the finished game. I feel most people I've heard that criticized the control scheme just didn't have enough time with the demo, because if I had only played it once with each class (especially in the case of the Wizard), I would have walked away with a negative take on the controls, too. Outside of the gameplay, the concept art for the game looks amazing, with hints of some major lore reveals like The Resurrection Chamber. Could we finally learn how demons are resurrected and why Diablo and his brothers are always coming back? It's a great example of how there is definitely stuff to get excited about when it comes to Diablo: Immortal, as the game is being promoted to include almost everything we've ever wanted in a Diablo game, including: Varied end game content In-depth gameplay via skill interactions Continual updates and content Expanded lore and story Gameplay tailored to different playstyles (10min bites or hours long grind sessions) Persistent online world with city hubs All of these are things we would love in Diablo 3 or Diablo 4. It's a shame that the negatives surrounding Immortal have overshadowed these attributes as everything they're aiming for would stack up to be amazing for an ARPG, it's just that we weren't expecting these features to debut first in a mobile game. The Bad ARPGs have dealt with a lot of issues over the years, with botting and item buying being some of the top complaints among the respective communities of almost every major ARPG out there. Even looking back at vanilla Diablo 3, the real money auction house was one of, if not THE, most controversial feature of that game. The vast majority of ARPG players despise pay-to-win mechanics, so when Blizzard announces a Diablo title for mobile, where there is a huge stigma of pay-to-win practices, you can see where this goes wrong. While I still trust Blizzard to make an amazing mobile game, the fact they've partnered with NetEase, a company that is famous for its microstransaction heavy titles, still leaves me with some major reservations. The Diablo community, and the ARPG playerbase as a whole, doesn't have issues with mircotransactions so long as they don't unbalance player power. Path of Exile is supported completely by cosmetic mircotransactions for example and is widely beloved, but if there are any ways to just out right buy powerful items in Diablo Immortal, it will further sour the relationship between the core Diablo fanbase and Blizzard. It's understandable that there is some hesitation from fans who are worried that the game could potentially offer people the ability to buy power rather than earn, in the process being forced to pay into the system in order to compete. Especially since Blizzard hasn't decided (or at least isn't saying) how the game will be monetized just yet. Another red-flag topic I heard from developers regarding Immortal was a question about "auto-play". Many eastern mobile games feature an auto-play mechanic where the game plays for you; moving to zones, talking to NPCs, fighting monsters, and completing quests. While not as completely automated as botting, this would be a huge sticking point for western ARPG fans that have been against botting for decades. The issue here is that auto-play is a staple for games in the eastern markets and Blizzard wants to create just a single, global game and not have to localize it for different regions. This is just one of those issues where there is no real right answer. Western players don't want an auto-play mechanic, but eastern players would be left questioning why it isn't in the game, and Blizzard wants everyone to play in the same shared space. Thankfully, decisions about auto-play were still very far away as the developers were still focused on core design of Immortal and it sounded like the developers were well aware of how western players would react to such a feature. I hope Blizzard fully understands that if they truly intend for Immortal to be targeted towards "core Diablo players" that this type of feature is a make-or-break decision for the majority of the Diablo community. Anything that resembled botting being a core feature of the game would be completely tone-deaf to a core issue we, as players, have been rallying against since the early days of the franchise. The Ugly This one isn't necessarily about the game itself, but it's still important — how the whole announcement of Diablo: Immortal was handled. Diablo players are primarily PC players, with a growing console base as well. When we're told to be excited about this year's BlizzCon, we expected something for PC. The Immortal announcement came out of left field and when there was nothing else mentioned for Diablo 3 or the next iteration in the series beyond "multiple teams, working on multiple projects", it's understandable that the fans got upset. That isn't to say that Blizzard and the developers shouldn't be excited about Immortal — they genuinely care about the game and they should be excited for their passion project. But, at the same time, the people in control of these marketing decisions should understand that we're not going to be the demographic that's going to be excited for that style of game. There are multiple examples from earlier this year of other developers announcing mobile titles to lukewarm response at best or outright hostility at worse. We fans felt as if Blizzard didn't understand what we wanted or what we get excited about. It felt like they were out of touch. Will PC players play a mobile game? Of course, but it's not going to be a primary focus. We needed something else, hard evidence from Blizzard to saying "hey here's something else we're working on to show that we haven't forgotten about you, the core audience." It's commonly accepted by most that one of the multiple projects is Diablo 4 and it will be on PC, but at this point the community needs to hear Blizzard say that. But as we've seen, Blizzard will not budge when it comes to keeping everything hidden until it's ready to show. Even after the bombshell Kotaku article, which contained numerous details about a second, cancelled expansion for Diablo 3 and multiple versions of Diablo 4, Blizzard still refuses to comment, which honestly is only furthering the divide between the community and the company. The cancellations of projects like Titan and Starcraft: Ghost have burned Blizzard in the past, which makes it somewhat understandable why Blizzard doesn't want to reveal their hand. However, in this scenario, it seems Blizzard could have take a play from game publisher Bethesda Softworks, who earlier this year announced a mobile game based on its beloved RPG series The Elder Scrolls and then followed it up by immediately confirming development of a new core game entry in the form of The Elder Scrolls VI. They even released a teaser trailer. Bethesda knew its fanbase wouldn't be satisfied with just a mobile game announcement, so they gave them a little tease of what was to come. And it worked. Turns out people can get mighty excited about 20 seconds of mountains and rocks followed by a logo. It's a gesture like that which shows the developers still have their core audience in mind. Maybe one day, AAA+ titles will exist for mobile and it'll be something BlizzCon goers will be expecting, but we're not there yet. Diablo: Immortal could be that first mind-blowing mobile game that really draws in the hardcore crowd, but no one will believe that until they get the game in their hands, and Blizzard should have approached it as such. We can all agree that Immortal got off to a bad start, but there is some potential for the title. There are also some aspects to be very wary of. Blizzard will need to put in a lot of effort to recoup lost faith among the fanbase, and they'll also need to be more open in communicating about where Immortal is headed and what kind of monetization system the game will feature. Diablo fans are upset because they're passionate about the franchise. They have decades of fond memories, and a mobile title, with all of the stigmas that go along with that, just seems anathema to those memories. For many Immortal will be a great side game, but they'll just want something more to go along with it. Maybe, just maybe, Blizzard can take a little risk and openly acknowledge that they're working on a PC Diablo title as the next iteration in the series and ease people's fears. If not, it might be a long wait for fans when it comes to learning what's next. Neinball (@NeinballGamer) is a content creator for Diablo Fans and a horadrim in training. Whether he's relaxing on Zegema Beach, fighting servants of the Corpse-God in the 41st millennium, or quelling Rebellions in the Outer Rim, his passion always brings him back to slaying Demons in Sanctuary. View the full article
  13. Season 16: The Season of Grandeur Begins 1/18 Season 16 begins on 1/18, and with it comes the biggest seasonal shake-up in quite some time! All season long, the Ring of Royal Grandeur buff will be available to all seasonal players without needing to wear the ring! On top of that, many of the existing class sets have been buffed! Check out all the details below. Originally Posted by Nevalistis (Official Post) Season 16 begins January 18 and accompanies our latest Diablo III patch. Read on to learn more about upcoming class set tweaks, quality of life changes, and a brand-new Seasonal buff that’s sure to make Season 16 grand! Table of Contents Season 16 Theme New Cosmetic Rewards Season Journey Rewards Seasonal Conquests Haedrig’s Gift Quality of Life Class Set Updates Patch Notes FAQ New Season Theme Season 16 introduces a brand-new buff to the mix that will change up the way you play. For the duration of Season 16, all Seasonal players will benefit from the legendary power of the Ring of Royal Grandeur. This means you do not need to hunt down or equip the item to benefit from its Set bonus-enabling ability! Bear in mind that this buff does not stack with additional Rings of Royal Grandeur, whether they be equipped directly on your character or via the Jewelry slot in Kanai’s Cube. For the uninitiated, this means many classes may be able to combine different Class Set bonuses in new ways—or squeeze yet another Legendary power into their favorite builds. Theorycrafters unite!—this is the season to strut your stuff, experiment to your heart’s content, and push the limits of your most perfectly crafted build. While we’ve done our own experimenting, we can’t wait to see what the community comes up with in Season 16! New Cosmetic Rewards Season 16 will also introduce new cosmetic rewards, obtainable by progressing through the Season Journey. In addition to the Helm and Shoulder slots of the exclusive Conqueror Set, players can earn a brand-new series of portrait frames themed around the clarion call of adventure.. For the most devoted cosmetic collectors, we have a pair of wings fit for a monarch. The Wings of Lempo draw inspiration from some of the noblest creatures in Sanctuary, and aside from a cosmically rare drop, few other wings are quite as lovely. 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 by now. But players who have not yet earned a total of four stash tabs via the Season Journey can still unlock an additional one by completing the following tasks at the Conqueror tier: Guardian of Sanctuary: Finish a level 70 Nephalem Rift on Torment XIII within five minutes Gem of My Life: Level three Legendary Gems to level 55 All I Do IS Win: Complete two Conquests this Season In for The Kill: Kill Azmodan at level 70 in under 30 seconds on Torment XIII difficulty Money Ain’t a Thang: Slay Greed on Torment XIII difficulty Take U There: Reach Greater Rift level 60 Solo 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 The Seasonal Conquest rotation continues! For the speedy, Speed Demon/Need for Speed requires the fastest nephalem to complete a Nephalem Rift at level 70 on Torment X or higher in under two minutes. On a Good Day/I Can’t Stop guides you to get your Legendary Gem grind on; level three Legendary Gems to 65 to complete this challenge! For the fiercest demon slayers, Boss Mode/World’s Apart is a speed challenge where you’ll need to eliminate the following bosses at level 70 and Torment X in under twenty minutes: The Skeleton King The Butcher Zoltun Kulle Ghom Cydaea Rakanoth Diablo Adria Queen Araneae Maghda Belial Siegebreaker Assault Beast Azmodan Izual Urzael Malthael Talk about a mouthful! 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. Finally, Years of War/Dynasty demonstrates your mastery of multiple classes by clearing a Greater Rift level 55 solo with the full bonuses of any six full Class sets. Haedrig’s Gift Finally, the Class Sets available 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 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 16: Barbarian – Immortal King’s Call Crusader – Seeker of the Light Demon Hunter – Natalya’s Vengeance Monk – Uliana’s Stratagem Necromancer – Trag’Oul’s Avatar Witch Doctor – Spirit of Arachyr Wizard – Vyr’s Amazing Arcana Quality of Life Changes Thanks to player feedback, we’ve focused on a couple of frequently requested changes to improve the overall Diablo experience. This includes minor changes, such as removing Legendary potions from player inventories so that they no longer take up space, but also more significant changes to celebrating end-game loot in Primal Legendaries. Primal Legendaries were, from the start, a goal largely intended for the segment of our audience pushing themselves to take on the game’s most challenging experiences. As power has increased over time, Primals have become more accessible across the board and we realized they were not celebrated or even as obvious as they should be, considering how ultimate they feel in a build. To this end, we’ve added specially colored beams and a unique mini-map icon to highlight when they drop, as well as shined up their tooltip and border colorations to be more discernible. Finally, we want to make sure everyone is clear when they can start collecting Primal Legendaries; upon completing your first Greater Rift 70 or higher Solo, you’ll receive an achievement indicating your accomplishment and the Greater Rift boss will be guaranteed to drop a Primal Legendary. This drop is subject to all other loot rules—meaning while there’s a large chance it will be suited for your class, randomness does play a factor. Class Set Updates The balance changes from Patch 2.6.1 have had a few seasons to percolate, allowing most classes and builds to settle in and reach for their best performance. With Patch 2.6.4, we’ve identified some of the best performing builds, like Condemn Crusader and Rathma’s Necromancer, and we’re looking to bring many of the other class set builds up to par. This is largely a numbers pass, and we haven’t just focused on class sets—the “no set Set” Legacy of Nightmares will be receiving a sizeable buff as well. We know many of you are curious as to what changes may have occurred as a result of your testing on the PTR. The updated Patch Notes are below for your viewing pleasure, so you can begin plotting out your ideal build before Season 16 begins! PATCH 2.6.4 - V2.6.4.54724 Table of Contents: General Greater Rifts Seasons Class Set Changes All Classes Barbarian Crusader Demon Hunter Monk Necromancer Witch Doctor Wizard General Quality of Life Philosophy For this patch, we wanted to include a few frequently requested Quality of Life changes and focused on better celebrating and indicating Primal Legendary drops. Five (5) additional Armory tabs have been added for all characters, bringing the total to 10 Legendary Potions are no longer stored in player inventory and can be accessed or changed by right-clicking on the potion icon in the action bar Greater Rift Keystones are now stored in the Materials tab Any existing Greater Rift Keystones in both inventory and stash have been automatically moved Primal Legendaries are now marked by a red beam when they drop Primal Legendaries on the ground are now indicated by a red pentagram icon on the mini-map Primal Legendaries now have a red border and updated background on their icons Greater Rifts Philosophy The gameplay of micro-managing Paragon points during the course of a Greater Rift doesn't feel like especially engaging gameplay, nor was it consistent with the other existing rules of entering a Greater Rift. In addition, the below change to matchmaking is to make it much easier for all players to find groups for Greater Rifts, as the previous window (only between Greater Rifts) is typically very small. Paragon points can no longer be swapped while a Greater Rift is open Players can now be matched into public games where a Greater Rift is open Players who join in this manner will not be able to enter the active Rift, and players inside the Rift will be able to continue with no additional difficulty scaling until the run has been completed Seasons Season 16: Season of Grandeur The buff for Season of Grandeur has been implemented This buff gives all Seasonal players the legendary power from Ring of Royal Grandeur This buff does not stack with additional Ring of Royal Grandeur (either equipped or in Kanai's Cube) Unlike previous Seasonal buffs, this buff will not apply to Non-Seasonal players When completing a Greater Rift level 70 solo for the first time in a Season, a Primal Legendary is guaranteed to drop from the Rift Guardian Class Set Changes Philosophy We are taking another tuning pass across all class sets to improve class and set diversity at higher level Greater Rifts. Some of these values have been adjusted per our observations as well as player feedback during the 2.6.4 PTR. Thanks for testing! All Classes Legacy of Nightmares The (2) Set bonus has been increased from 100% to 750% Barbarian The Legacy of Raekor The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 2800% to 5500% Immortal King's Call The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 1500% to 4000% Might of the Earth The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 5600% to 20000% Wrath of the Wastes The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 3000% to 10000% Crusader Thorns of the Invoker The (2) Set bonus has been increased from 140% to 350% The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 5400% to 15000% Roland's Legacy The (4) Set bonus has been increased from 3300% to 13000% The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 50% increased Attack Speed to 75% Seeker of the Light The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 2000% Blessed Hammer damage to 12000% Demon Hunter Embodiment of the Maruader The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 3000% to 12000% Unhallowed Essence The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 100% to 350% Natalya's Vengeance The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 3500% to 14000% The Shadow's Mantle The (2) Set bonus has been increased from 1200% to 6000% The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 50000% to 75000% Monk Uliana's Strategem The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 2100% to 9000% Inna's Mantra The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 150% to 750% Monkey King's Garb The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 1000% to 1500% Raiment of a Thousand Storms The (2) Set bonus has been increased from 100% to 400% The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 13000% Dashing Strike damage to 60000% The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 1300% Spirit Generator damage to 6000% Necromancer Trag'Oul's Avatar The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 3300% to 3800% Witch Doctor Spirit of Arachyr The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 4500% to 9000% Helltooth Harness The (2) Set bonus has been increased from 1500% to 3000% The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 4400% to 9000% Raiment of the Jade Harvester The (2) Set bonus has been increased from 560 seconds to 3500 seconds The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 1650 seconds to 10000 seconds Zunimassa's Haunt The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 5500% to 15000% Wizard Tal Rasha's Elements The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 750% to 2000% Delsere's Magnum Opus The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 3800% to 8500% Vyr's Amazing Arcana The (6) Set bonus has been increased from 50% bonus damage to 100% We can’t wait to see what combinations players come up with throughout the course of Season 16 . . . especially when considering the new Seasonal buff! Frequently Asked Questions Q: When does Season 16 start? A: Season 16 begins Friday, January 18 at 5:00 p.m. PST in North America, 5:00 p.m. CEST in Europe, and 5:00 p.m. KST in Asia. For time zone conversion, see this site. Q: When do Seasons go live for players on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Nintendo Switch? A: Seasons go live for all console players globally Friday, January 18 at 5:00 p.m. Pacific Time, regardless of which regional version of the game you may have. Please note that Seasonal Leaderboards for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Nintendo Switch are still separate by hardware platform. Q: When will Season 16 end? A: We currently anticipate that Season 16 will be ending on Sunday, March 17 at 5:00 p.m. PST in North America, 5:00 p.m. CEST in Europe, and 5:00 p.m. KST in Asia. Q: Why is the Season end date an estimate? A: Traditionally, we have given players two weeks’ notice prior to the ending of a Season. However, we’ve heard the community’s feedback, so going forward, we’ll be providing more comprehensive Season details in the Season preview blogs. Please bear in mind that this date is an estimate and there is always a chance it may shift. While we will do our best to hit these target dates as closely as possible, we will continue to verify the Season end date at the two-week warning mark. Q: When are the non-Seasonal Leaderboards being wiped? A: Non-Seasonal Leaderboards are tied to what we call “Eras,” each of which lasts about 6–12 months. The most recent era began November 9 and is scheduled to end January 8. For more information on Eras, please see this post. Q: What will happen to older Seasonal and Era records? A: Starting with Season 10, we removed old personal bests from Season 1. When Season 16 arrives, we will remove old personal bests from Season 7, and so on. We will be doing the same for personal bests from the previous Era when the next one goes live. Seasonal Leaderboard records are not being cleared and will remain archived both in game and on our website. Themed Seasons are continuing to evolve as we venture into the future, and we’re quite excited to see where this one leads. Are you looking forward to the Season of Grandeur? Which build or class set buff are you looking to experiment with first? Share your thoughts below and we’ll see you in Season 16 View the full article
  14. The Diablo team have just announced an epic EU Sweepstakes for the holiday season. Those who enter have a chance to win the following prizes: 1x Switch bundle 30x Switch copies of Diablo + Diablo cases 10x Whimsyshire plushes You can find all the details, including how to enter, here on the official site. Good luck! View the full article
  15. Season 15 End/Season 16 Start Dates Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment (Official Post) Hey everyone, In order to ensure a smooth transition between Seasons, and give players extra time to enjoy the Double Bounty Cache buff, we will be ending Season 15 on January 6. With this, Season 16 is scheduled to begin on January 11. As a quick heads-up, we will also be resetting the current Era leaderboards on January 8, so you’ve still got some time to push for that final leaderboard placement before the rollover occurs! Good luck, - Tyvalir View the full article

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