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Well, this is one of those weird and yet inevitable stories, as a new cartoon TV show has caused Blizzard to register a "Notice of Opposition" to a trademark filing from Fox Media related to a dog.
As reported by PCGamesN, the upcoming HouseBroken animated show coming to Fox on May 31st has a dog character named "Diablo", and Fox Media has tried to trademark the name, for merchandising and similar purposes (dog bowls, cups, saucers etc). Blizzard has filed a Notice of Opposition to this filing, in which they explain (at length) their claim to the Diablo name, going through all the games, expansions, the upcoming release of Immortal, the fact the franchise has won awards and "been the subject of substantial, unsolicited media attention", and even mentioning a pending trademark application for "downloadable films and movies featuring narratives based on a video game" from back in 2019.
With all that set up, the main claim is that "it is likely that members of the public will erroneously believe that Applicant’s [Fox] Goods offered under the DIABLO mark originate with, or are in some manner connected or associated with, or sponsored by, Opposer [Blizzard], all to the harm of Opposer’s goodwill and reputation." and that it would "be likely to cause confusion or mistake or to deceive".
(You can check out the preview video for the show and Diablo in particular over on PCGamesN, as it has been blocked in my country.)
Now while it's somewhat unlikely that a cartoon dog might be mistaken for the Lord of Terror and the games that are his namesakes, since Blizzard is (eventually) planning on creating some animated (or dare we dream live action) Diablo-related shows, the complaint makes sense, as well as from a more simple "defending the trademark" standpoint.
You can read the full Notice of Opposition here.
It seems some clever players found a way around the 3-class limitation from the D2:R technical alpha and we now have all the skills for all the classes to look at! An important thing to note is that for the classes not directly enabled in the alpha, it's safe to assume the skill effects might get improved still, as they were locked off for a reason.
It seems the old-school Hero editor still worked in the alpha, so shalzuth simply created one of the three unlocked classes, then changed their class to the locked ones! We've already covered the actually enabled classes (Amazon, Barbarian, Sorceress) from the alpha with a couple videos for each, which you can check out here, but now we're on to the rest, starting with Assassin. These are short videos that just go through the skills quickly and zoomed in, with some combat interaction as well:
The Druid is actually very flashy in the elemental tree, with some quite cool effects and the Werebear is looking particularly fearsome as well.
The Necro has some unexciting curses as usual, but the summons are looking pretty snazzy, especially the Golems:
And finally we have the Paladin, and while there's only so much you can do to improve auras and spinning glowy hammers, Holy Freeze, Holy Shock are looking good, and the hammers seem a bit larger than before!
So far the D2:R alpha is looking really good and players are very satisfied with the results, now the big questions is when is it coming out!
The technical alpha has finished and it's been a very positive reception from the Diablo community. And seeing as the visual upgrade is the main feature of the remake, we thought we'd take a look at as many skills from as many classes as we can!
Luckily for us, MrLlamaSC andGame it Up compiled all the skills for the three available classes, even showcasing them in action (with a lot of Fallen having to fall for us to see all of it)! As you'd expect, the Sorc is the flashiest and has the most visual skill variety, so we'll start there as it really showcases the graphical improvements the most. The first of each class videos is shorter, quickly going over each skill with some commentary from MrLlamaSC, while the second takes a lot more time with each skill.
Amazons are a little less flashy, but still very lightning-heavy, with bow and javelin skills getting most of the effects.
Barbarians have a really... interesting take on Leap, as they seem to have also mastered chronomancy while mid-air, as they got some very sweet slow-mo action going. Whirlwind also got some love, as the entire shouts tree is, well, different colored shouts!
Hopefully we'll get some similar videos for the other classes in one of the upcoming tests, as these are the only three that were enabled this time around!
With the remastered version of Diablo 2 being on Battle.net and Blizzard/Vicarious Visions explicitly having stated that fact will help with cheating, bots and similar, we now have an old friend/enemy appear on the technical alpha.
Duping is back and it's pretty simple to do, but luckily this is exactly what alphas are for! We can only hope players test out ALL the various possible versions of this and they get fixed before release, as iiNexius reported this one and shared it with the community.
Here a not cut-off explanation of the method, in case you're on the alpha and want to get some serious runewords going, or are just curious:
Some potential good news for everyone, as there's reports of the Korean technical alpha getting extended for a very long period, and this might indicate it will get extended in the West as well!
CareerPuzzled4437 spotted a Korean filing for a huge extension of the D2R technical alpha, which is set to add almost two extra months to the test, starting on April 14th and ending June 12th:
The Korean Game Rating and Administration Committee listed the above, and if you'll remember, the last time that happened the Western alpha came along with the same dates a few days later, so there's hope that the extension will be announced soon here too!