Diablo 4: Everything You need to Know

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A few days ago, there was an announcement that the game would be released sometime in 2023, along with Diablo 4’s fifth appearance hero, the Necromancer. It cannot be said that it is as specific as it is in the middle of next year, since the margin of error is one year, but unlike before when there was no promise at all, now it is a situation where you can meet the game within a year and a half if it is as short as half a year or as long as a year and a half. It’s already been 3 years since I first played the game at BlizzCon 2019.

Diablo 4
Diablo 4

During those less than three years, Blizzard suffered from several internal and external exchanges. The second president, ‘J. From the early resignation of Alan Brack, the establishment of the CEO Mike Ivara system, and the merger with Microsoft, Blizzard faced more crises and more crises than in the previous decades during these years, which is the development period of Diablo 4. has undergone changes. Naturally, one can only wonder if the game is being developed properly.

Perhaps because of that, the development team released a video containing the development process quarterly from the second half of 2021, when the problem occurred. In addition, through various channels including the official website, information related to the game was leaked little by little, indicating that the game is still under development. It was probably uploaded in the dimension of “Don’t worry, development is going well even in this crisis”, but it was also fun to see how the game is being developed.

And, the amount of information that has spread little by little is already quite large. It is fragmented and scattered all over the Internet, but when you put it all together, you can get a rough idea of ​​what the game looks like and how it feels to play. So, I put it together and organized it. I have summarized the information of ‘Diablo 4’ that has been released so far, and even the undisclosed elements that I did not say, using keywords.

Please note in advance that all information disclosed so far is under development and may change at the time of the official release.

Open World (Seamless World)

A fact known since the game was first released. Whereas previous works dealt with only a few areas of Sanctuary, ‘Diablo 4’ implemented the entire area instead of dealing with only a few small areas rather than multiple areas. Previously, you could meet some areas of Kanduras, some areas of Kurast, but this time there are no Kurast, Aranok Desert, or Kanduras, but the entire area from Skosglen in the north to the dry plains and Kezistan is realized. It is one-third of the total size of the sanctuary.

As the map became wider, the sense of play also changed somewhat compared to before. Where previous titles went straight to the battlefield via waypoints, now you’re literally exploring the world itself. There is no set quest order, and it is entirely up to the player to decide which problem to solve first. A sudden event (represented by a silver exclamation mark) that appears slightly in Episode 3 also appears all the time, and whether or not to solve it is also the player’s choice.

Over 150 dungeons, ‘encampments’, and huge field bosses that exist throughout the map are the highlight of the Diablo 4 open world. The dungeon is the same content as the previous dungeons, and the ‘encampment’ is an outpost occupied by the devil and will be used as a base for allied adventurers when retaken.

What has changed with the open world is that you can meet other players in villages, etc., so exchanges with other players occur naturally, and horses are provided as the area expands. Horses can be customized to any appearance, and hippo attacks that fire powerful attacks while dismounting from the horse exist for each class.

The following areas can be seen in the background art trailer released on March 30th.

Open World (Seamless World)
Sanctuary area and enlarged view in Diablo 4

– Skosglen: A region located at the northern tip of the eastern continent (Mount Arreat is located in the western continent), the hometown of druids and a wild land with a harsh environment. Judging from the name and concept art, it seems to be a region inspired by neighboring regions including Ireland and Scotland, the origins of the Celtic faith in the past, and it was an area that existed only as a setting before Diablo 4.

Because there is a frozen sea to the north, the proportion of the coast is high in the region, and fishing is a significant part of the daily life of the residents of Skosglen. This can also be seen in the appearance of the village of Skosglen, which was released by the development team. It is an area filled with sensibility such as fog, coldness, and eerie.

– Dry Steppes: English name Dry Steppes. It is a vast wasteland to the south of Skosglen, and to the south of the barren plain is the Kezistan Empire (Caldeum, where Belial was slain in Diablo 3, is the capital of Kezistan). In the video, ‘Orbei Monastery’, a religious facility of Zakarum located in a rural area of ​​a dry plain, was unveiled.

There were several oasis in the Arid Plains, including the Salt Lake, so players can check out the now-dried Salt Plains while exploring. The reason why it is a ‘wasteland’ rather than a desert is that although it has a dry climate overall, it is not to the extent that plants cannot grow at all. With one characteristic, there is a barbarian tribe that has the same roots as the tribes of Mount Arreat, but differentiates differently in the Arid Plains. The dark-skinned barbarians appearing in Episode 4 are set to be barbarians from a dry plains tribe.

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– Fragmented Peak: It is an alpine region located to the east of the arid plain, a harsh environment with ice caps and glaciers. Like Skos Glen, this area also has a cold and cold image, but it is a town where people manage to live in the sanctuary, a living hell wherever you go because of the relatively dense forest.

Kiyobashad, a village located on a fragmented peak, is a village showing militaristic tendencies. Despite the two disasters caused by the invasion of demons and Malthael’s actions, it is still a town where people live. It is filled with various defense facilities. Although it looks prepared for a call, there are still quite a few people living there.

– Kejistan: The area that corresponds to the background of Act 2 in Diablo 3. Although it spans a wasteland, it was self-sufficient due to the existence of grasslands, and Deckard Kane once said that this area was the most important area of ​​human civilization as it was an area where grass grew thick. Esau has long since collapsed.

Based on Diablo 4, it is one of the five main regions, and among them, the region that corresponds to the outskirts. It is self-evident that most areas will appear as ruins due to the Great Evil’s tactic + the riots of the Angel of Death, but nevertheless, you can get a glimpse of the previous level of civilization through the submerged underground. In Diablo 3, we could get a glimpse of the submerged underground facilities of Kezistan, and in Diablo 4, such areas appear.

– Hawezar: Previously, it existed only as a setting, and among the five regions of Diablo 4, the correct information has not yet been revealed. South of the Fragmented Peak, a huge swamp that appears when you cross the mountain range east of Kejistan, and is treated as a gutter even within the Sanctuary. It is an area where criminals, thieves, assassins, and people who like to live without the law gather, and detailed information has not been released yet.

Narrative

If the background area is the same as above, ‘Lilith’ and the demon worshipers are at the center of the background narrative. As everyone already knows, ‘Lilith’ is the daughter of the Great Evil Mephisto, who created the sanctuary with the angel Inarius and created the nephalem. To summarize the background of the narrative, when more than 90% of the humans in Sanctuary died due to the demon invasion and Malthael’s dwarf, the demon worshipers summoned Lilith, which caused the still suffering Sanctuary to suffer from complications. .

However, ‘Lilith’ is only the central character of the narrative, not the position corresponding to the final boss. When Malthael died, the Black Soul Stone was broken, and because of this, the Great Demons sealed by the main character of Diablo 3 through all kinds of hardships were released, so there is a possibility that the previous Great Demons will appear again. Also, the final boss of the Diablo series was always ‘Diablo’. Except for the mobile version of Diablo Immortal.

There are two controversial points in the present narrative. One is that the person who summoned Lilith at the end of the first released cinematic video ‘Three Comes’ is ‘Rathma’, the first nephalem and the beginning of a necromancer. He hated the values ​​of Inarius and Lilith, as well as themselves. A level of hate beyond dislike. Nevertheless, the current setting cannot explain why Rathma welcomes Lilith with courtesy.

The other is the whereabouts of the main character who ran rampantly in Diablo 3 with the momentum to destroy the world. He alone defeated the Great Demon and made even the Angel of Death worthy of his name, so it is unknown what happened even though he is not a character that can be ignored in the structure of the narrative. The characters of Diablo 2 have slightly unraveled what happened in Act 5 of Diablo 3, but the related narrative has yet to be revealed.

Participating hero “Diablo 4”

Participating hero "Diablo 4"
The bonfire of memories returned

As the previous Diablo numbering series started with 5 players except for the first one and expanded to 7 through expansion packs or class packs, now that 5 heroes have been revealed, the community already believes that there will be no more heroes until the official release. atmosphere. The heroes in this work are as follows.

– Barbarian: A brother who shines for 3 consecutive visits (excluding Immortals). He is still shown spinning the whirlwind and hitting the madman. As I said before, in episode 4, the tribes of the wasteland appeared, so the skin color was different from the previous work, which had pale skin. The job concept is not much different from the previous one, but the image of a weapon master who handles various weapons freely has been added.

– Elementalist: An elementalist from the same ‘Zan Esu’ as in Part 2, not the ‘Wizard’ in Part 3, who was from ‘Sian Sai’. In the Diablo universe, ‘magicians’ are drawn as blackened characters focusing on destruction rather than coordination of elements, and that was the case with the three wizards. The characteristic of the Elementalist is that each skill has two effects, and you can choose between them. A skill can be used as an active skill, but any skill can be made passive by placing it in its own ‘Enchant’ space.

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– Druid:Diablo 2’s skinny guy has gone and returned in a lump worse than a barbarian. The flame magic disappeared by overlapping the concept with the elemental magician, and as before, with the storm and earth magic, the animals and plants as well as the transformation skills are still alive. However, the transforming device is not a posture type like before, but a type that immediately transforms and uses the technique when using the technique and the transformation is released. I have a feeling it would be like this if there was a power wizard.

– Rogue: It looks like a new hero, but in fact, it is a renewal of ‘Rogue’ that appeared in Diablo 1 more than 20 years ago. A hero who brought the concept of agile physics characters (Assassin, Amazon, Demon Hunter, etc.) that existed before. They mainly use bows, daggers, and poisons, and it is inferred that they can be nurtured into characters with different styles depending on how they are raised.

– The Necromancer: The hero who is still on the job for the third time in a row and the 5th hero that was recently revealed. In the introduction video, corpses and essences are still used as resources, and undead summons, blood magic, and curses are used. However, it is a question of how the narrative will unfold in a situation where ‘Rathma’, the highest point of a necromancer, is suddenly meeting his mother ‘Lilith’.

 Each hero's appearance customization is quite wide.
 Each hero’s appearance customization is quite wide.

Nurturing, Combat System In Diablo 4

The ‘item’ system, which was the alpha and omega of the Diablo series, has been simplified. The ancient legend items have disappeared, the stat display has been simplified, and it is divided into five levels: common, magic, rare, legendary, and unique. The development team said that it was planned to prevent the item from becoming ‘uniform’, but the development team always said that, and at the same time, as uniforms have always been made, we have to know what will happen in reality. What has been confirmed so far is that, like Diablo 2, the option to raise a specific skill level has returned, and the unique item is that the option is fixed.

Nurturing, Combat System In Diablo 4
Item revelation by grade, even though the attack power is the same, there is a difference in the number of options.

The fostering system was made similar to ‘Diablo 2’, but slightly different. Unlike the 3rd episode, where you did not have to worry about stat distribution, it is a concept that invests 5 points obtained for each level up in the four stats divided into strength, agility, intelligence, and will. Strange stats such as ‘power’ were scheduled to be employed, but were discarded.

‘Runeword’ reappeared after 3 episodes, but it looks a little different from before. If the previous runewords had a specific effect when the runes were put in order according to a set formula, the current runewords are divided into ‘conditions’ and ‘effects’ and are connected. When each rune is embedded, the effect corresponding to the rune is activated. For example, if an effect rune of ‘Stunn nearby enemies’ is combined with the conditional rune of ‘When hit’, it becomes a defensive runeword, but when combined with ‘When an enemy is killed’, it can be used more aggressively. 

The runes given as examples are literally just examples, and it is unknown whether they will actually appear.

The appearance of the skill tree may have changed.  This is an image in development
The appearance of the skill tree may have changed.  This is an image in development

The ‘skill tree’ is shaped like a tree, and when you unlock a square node, you can acquire new active skills, a circle node can strengthen skills, and a gem node can acquire continuous effect points. The development team revealed that they are planning to unlock only 30-40% of all nodes at the end of the game, and this is to prevent all characters from growing in a similar direction. Points used in the skill tree get 2 points for every level up.

Although not mentioned, one of the elements that can be found in the related video is the ‘weapon mastery’ system. It is not known whether this applies only to barbarians who use multiple weapons or if it is a common growth factor, but during the play demonstration, a notification of weapon proficiency growth appeared and it was confirmed that the damage of the weapon group increased.

wo-handed blunt skill increase notification
wo-handed blunt skill increase notification

Separately, each weapon group has physical characteristics for each weapon. Two-handed weapons are slow but strong, and one-handed weapons are fast but relatively weak. How to get the balance here is being adjusted, but what kind of weapon group you mainly use can be a branch of character development, just like the skill tree.

The ‘Conqueror Board (Paragon Board)’ is a nurturing element that appears at the end of the game (Level 50), and occupies a similar position to the Conqueror Level (Paragon Level) in the third episode. It starts at the central node and gradually expands outward to select a fostering option. When you reach the ‘Hero’s Gateway Tile (tentative name)’, a new board to connect to is selected. Tiles are divided into Normal, Magical, Rare, and Legendary.

Examples of nodes for each rank on the Conqueror board
Examples of nodes for each rank on the Conqueror board
The board looks like this.
The board looks like this.

End game content

In fact, the end game content, which will occupy more than 90% of the game time, was revealed relatively recently, and the devs said that it ‘begins a completely different journey’. Representative elements are the more powerful dungeons that appeared in Diablo 3 and the Conqueror board. Crafting, side quests, and camp search are ready.

A powerful field boss that appears a few times in the video can also be one of the end contents. It is known that the multiplayer session of Diablo 4 consists of up to 4 people (separate from the common base), but the field boss looks like five or more people are challenging together, so you can see that this content is more flexible in terms of the number of people just like the common base. can

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The implementation of PVP content has also been confirmed, and like Diablo 2, PVP can be turned on or off in the form of a toggle. However, PVP is not possible in all areas, and PVP will be held in the ‘Region of Hatred’, which is a setting that has been cursed by Mephisto. If you defeat the opponent, you can collect items for transmog and achievement trophies along with the traditional ‘ear’. These loot are purely for achievements and transmogs with no stats involved.

Field raid that can be done with at least 5 people
Field raid that can be done with at least 5 people

Graphics and Atmosphere in Diablo 4

Among the various parts of the game with different likes and dislikes, the parts that have received favorable reviews without much disagreement are the description of the game’s atmosphere and the implementation of graphics. At BlizzCon 2019, there were opinions that the graphic quality was not high when watching the game video that was first released at BlizzCon 2019, but after actually playing the alpha version, it shows the highest level of graphics even considering it is a quarter view. The equipment worn by the character is shown as it is in the cutscenes other than the game play, but at this time, even when the character is shown very close, I did not feel that the graphics were lacking.

And, the atmosphere of the game seems to have returned to the second part that received a higher evaluation than that. It’s not as dark as episode 1, where you can’t even see the mobs right in front of you, but it’s more advanced than episode 2, which was at an ideal level, and can’t be compared to episode 3, which was closer to the nephalem power show. The atmosphere of the sanctuary that is dark and drab, cold and lonely, yet stained with blood can be seen anywhere in the demonstration video.

The development of graphics played a big role in creating such an atmosphere, and the representative part is the use of light sources. Since the magic effect cast by the gamer acts as a light source, you can enjoy the unique atmosphere of sweeping away demons by splashing magic lights in a dark cave.

 Light effects are a big axis of Diablo 4's atmosphere.
Light effects are a big axis of Diablo 4’s atmosphere.

In addition to that, if there is an advanced aspect, the attack range of each skill is not lumped, but varies according to the movement of the weapon. Previously, when the barbarian circles the Whirlwind, there is an area that periodically damages a certain area around the character, but now the damage is actually done according to the trajectory of the weapon’s rotation. Theoretically, if you circle around a mob in the opposite direction to Whirlwind’s rotation direction, you can inflict damage at a faster rate.

In addition, the structure of all mobs is built on an anatomical basis, so the animation is more natural during treatment, and if repeated close combat, the entire body is drenched in blood, and if the opponent is stunned, an animation of falling down for a certain period of time appears. These added details are also factors that contribute to the atmosphere of the game.

A player who fell for a moment after being hit by a skill and a monster that was about to die in a prone state
A player who fell for a moment after being hit by a skill and a monster that was about to die in a prone state

Diablo 4 Release Date and Platform

‘Diablo 4’ is expected to be released in 2023, but the exact date is not known. If you just feel comfortable thinking about the end of 2023, even if it comes out earlier than that, it won’t be too late, so you won’t see any loss. Of course, there are many delays in the game development process, so it could be pushed back to 2024, but let’s not think about it like that. Diablo 4 is currently pre-ordering, and you can apply through the official website.

Diablo 4
Diablo 4

The platform is released on PC and XBOX, and cross-play between each model is supported. As long as Blizzard is a subsidiary of Microsoft, the release of the PS version is unlikely, and if it does happen, it is highly likely that it will be after a long time. In addition, the game is released at a full price, and additional charging elements are limited to previously released expansion packs and additional cosmetic elements. The development team said this and nailed it as there would be no part that could be involved in the ability through charging.

Finally, it is possible that the contents we have now put together will be useless rubbish at the time of release. Therefore, the contents written here should be used only to the extent of judging the current development direction of the development team and how well it has been implemented and simulating the game in advance in your head, and you should not think that these contents will be exactly the same as the official version. .

I hope it doesn’t change much though.

Check also: Diablo Immortal Strategy: Legendary Equipment List

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