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Well, if you needed to know more about Diablo Immortal, this is the place for you. Lord Fluffy got his hands on the Alpha and has been playing it for quite a while (60+ hours), putting together this video that goes over... well pretty much everything you'd want to know about the game.
Ti skip to the end, his final thoughts are that it's definitely worth playing but might be a little too pay to win if you want to compete in the current Challenge Rift endgame activity leaderboards, but as there will be changes to both the microtransaction systems and more additions to the endgame (even possibly including raids) by the time of release, it's nothing to get too worried about yet.
And here are all the topics covered and links to skip to the ones you want to hear about:
1:17 Game Size & Battery Life
18:35 The Grind
19:20 Legendary Gems
20:26 Challenge Rifts
22:38 Elder Rifts & Crests
25:12 Upgrading Gems
30:23 Bounties & Events
34:34 Zones, Events & PVP
38:54 Upgrade & Reforge
45:49 Item Rank
46:42 Currency & Vendors
49:46 Auction House
50:36 AMA Answers
51:34 Pay to Win
55:17 Final Thoughts
With Diablo Immortal Technical Alpha starting soon for Android users in Australia, Blizzard shared some details on the monetization model of the game. It will be free with optional in-app purchases.
The blog post mentions that purchases should never circumvent Diablo's core gameplay and distract you from your gameplay experience.
In Diablo Immortal, you will be able to buy Crests that make leveling faster by adding random modifiers that enhance gameplay, making rifts easier or more challenging.
Using Crests guarantees certain non-gear rewards like Runes and Legendary Gems. Crests also provide rift points, and accumulated rift points can be used to acquire items such as Legendary Gems.
Next, you will be able to buy Reforge Stones for extra re-rolls on an item property.
Immortal has a Battle Pass progression system that allows you to earn rewards by completing Seasonal Quests and other activities.
The Market connects anonymous buyers and sellers, with no ability to cash out.
Diablo Immortal has 3 currencies:
Gold, acquired from enemies, chests, and other lootables. Platinum, earned through daily gameplay or purchased with real money. Eternal Orbs, acquired with real money only. The currency can be used for purchasing Platinum, the Battle Pass, Specialized Reforge Stones, Crests, and cosmetics. (Source)
Our Approach and Values
We know one of the outstanding questions about the game is: What is the business model for Diablo Immortal? Getting this right for players is important to our team, and today we want to share how we’re coming at this for Immortal—what it is, the values behind it, and how it works in practice.
Before we dig in, we’ll be referencing several game systems in this blog, so we highly recommend checking out our gameplay blogs first. Understanding how these systems work is useful to keep in mind as you read on.
CHARACTER AND SKILL PROGRESSION
Diablo Immortal will be free-to-play with optional in-app purchases. We plan on supporting Diablo Immortal with a constant cadence of free content, including new gear, features, classes, stories, and areas to explore. We also want to make sure every purchase feels fair and is guided by a clear set of values that place an emphasis on the player experience for all players.
First and foremost of these values is gameplay first. Core mechanics are designed to be fun first, and purchases should never circumvent Diablo’s core gameplay – killing demons and getting gear! There should also be a pathway to earn most things you can pay for. And critically important is that the only way to acquire gear is by playing the game.
Second, we want to provide purchase options that feel worthwhile and deepen your engagement and enjoyment of the game, and where possible the enjoyment of other players as well. Purchases should not detract from your gameplay experience.
Third, purchases should feel like a bonus, and entirely optional to enjoy Immortal. The core Diablo Immortal game experience will always be free, and you should be able to enjoy the game for hours on end whether or not you choose to spend money.
What You Can Buy: A Few Examples
A good example of these values at work are Crests used with Elder Rifts. Players can run Elder Rifts to their heart’s content, and Crests can be earned or purchased, providing both personal and social benefits. Using Crests spices up the experience by adding random modifiers that enhance gameplay, making a Rift either easier or more challenging. Using a Crest guarantees certain non-gear rewards such as Runes and Legendary Gems. Crests also provide Rift points when used by at least one member of the party, and all players in the group will be rewarded with Rift points even if they do not use their own Crest. Accumulated Rift points can then be used to acquire items such as Legendary Gems.
Another example is Reforging. Reforging item properties requires special consumable materials that can be earned through gameplay or purchased. Players can earn Reforge Stones for extra re-rolls on an item property, or purchase Specialized Reforge Stones, which allow you to focus on the item properties you want most.
Immortal also has a Battle Pass progression system that allows players to earn rewards by completing Seasonal Quests and other in-game activities. The Battle Pass has both free and paid tracks. All players can claim rewards such as Reforge Stones and Crests through the free track, while players with the paid track will have access to exclusive cosmetics and even more rewards.
Before we get into the details, let’s be clear—this is not the Diablo III real-money auction house. Player exchange has been a part of Diablo’s history, and we’ve learned many lessons–both good and bad–along the way. In Diablo Immortal we want players to have the ability to participate in a fair, healthy, player-driven economy that doesn’t circumvent gameplay.
The Market connects anonymous buyers and sellers, with no ability to cash-out. There are limits to what can and cannot be put on the Market. While it will be a possible source of certain materials, supplementary items, and Legendary Gems, it is not a place to acquire gear. It’s also a way for all players, including those who choose to never make an in-game purchase, to exchange items they find for additional in-game currency, beyond what they’re able to earn through play.
Currencies in Diablo Immortal
There are three primary currency types in Diablo Immortal, earnable through gameplay and paid. Below is a brief overview of these currencies, how they’re obtained, and examples of what they are used for.
Gold drops from enemies, chests, and other lootables in the world of Sanctuary. It cannot be purchased or traded and must be earned through gameplay. Gold can be used for things like upgrading your items and purchasing randomized gear from NPC vendors.
Platinum can be earned through daily gameplay activities or purchased with real money. Players can also obtain Platinum by selling items via the Market. Platinum is used for activities such as exchanging goods on the Market or crafting Charms.
Eternal Orbs are acquired with real money only, and can be used for purchasing Platinum, as well as other items such as the Battle Pass, Specialized Reforged Stones, Crests, and cosmetics.
Through Technical Alpha and Beyond
Our focus for the Technical Alpha is on gameplay and making sure Immortal is fun. The Technical Alpha will not have any real money transactions, though we may provide some in-game currency to test out these systems. That said, we’ll continue to refine our approach, always leading with our values—putting gameplay first, providing worthwhile options, and designing them as a bonus. Our goal is to ensure that it feels right for Diablo Immortal and its players.
We’re looking forward to feedback throughout the Technical Alpha, and we can’t wait until we can see all of you in Sanctuary.
So this is a bit of a weird one, as Wyatt Cheng, Lead Designer for Diablo: Immortal, has posted a job listing for a "Lead Content Designer". This seems pretty strange as the game is supposedly very far along, and was even said to be "almost finished" a long time ago, so why would they be hiring a lead role for a core aspect of the game now? It's possible the position only recently opened up as someone left the project, but with such a high profile position and the game presumably close to ready it seems like strange timing. There could also be another Blizzard "do-over" like what happened with Diablo 3 and what also allegedly happened with Diablo 4 a couple times, which would mean the game isn't coming out any time soon.
The other option is what is sort-of suggested in the tweet itself, as "to grow Sanctuary well into the future" might mean that the role will be focusing on post-launch content, after someone else got the base game ready. The job description also mentions content in "patch updates" and a live content schedule, so this second option is more likely.
Here are the details of the job listing:
In any case, Diablo: Immortal isn't giving us any indications of when it might be coming out, and with each new piece of news we get it seems farther and farther away.
Here comes a big update after the new footage we saw earlier, with Wyatt Cheng, the lead dev, giving us the overview on updates for the game. Similar to the recent Diablo 4 update, this one focuses on the internal playtest, where other Blizzard staff from across the world get to try the game out. We get some nice new images and gifs to check out as well:
Mid-year Update (source)
Greetings Diablo Immortal Community!
It’s been a little while since you’ve heard from us, so we wanted check in and share an update on how development has been progressing for Diablo Immortal. We have seen many burning questions about the status of development on Diablo Immortal and rest assured, the team has been hard at work.
We have transitioned to working from home, the team is still making good progress, and we are delighted to be marching toward key development milestones. One of the most important milestones for every new game at Blizzard is the internal company playtest. Blizzard is full of passionate gamers with a diverse range of playstyles and gaming tastes—the internal company playtest allows the development team to access that deep well of feedback.
The Diablo Immortal team is eager to see how our Blizzard colleagues around the world experience our game. From the very first login to choosing a Legendary item to perfectly complement your build, we’ll be soliciting feedback to guide our decisions as we iterate on the game before it goes beyond Blizzard’s walls. In our quest to reimagine what is possible on mobile, we want to make sure the game delivers authentic Diablo combat with traditional Blizzard polish in a way that is natively intuitive on the platform.
Once our playtest concludes, the team will focus on working through the feedback. This milestone is crucial to our team because we want to ensure that Diablo Immortal is the best experience for our players when we’re ready to share it with the world. Getting the game into the hands of more of us at Blizzard is a major step toward getting it into yours.
Diablo Immortal is coming together, and we can’t wait to share more details about our ongoing testing and release plans as development progresses. On a personal note, I also wanted to take a moment to thank you for your continued support and patience. On behalf of the Diablo Immortal team, we are grateful that you have been on this journey with us so far and we appreciate all of the interest for our game. Know that the minions of hell are hard at work and we can’t wait to show you everything we’ve been doing when the time is right.
Lead Designer, Diablo Immortal Team
A company playtest for Diablo Immortal is coming soon.
At ChinaJoy 2020, we only saw a new Diablo: Immortal trailer, but there were no words on when the game would enter testing.
Diablo Immortal was announced almost two years ago and Blizzard revealed in the Q2 2020 Earnings Call that the game is due to expand internal testing with a company playtest in the coming weeks.