Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Damien

d3 Blizzard Plans to Keep Players Interested in Diablo III After 2.1

1 post in this topic

6819-blizzard-plans-to-keep-players-inte

With the release of Diablo III Patch 2.1 today, we found it fitting to publish the interview we had at GamesCom with Matthew Berger, Senior Level Designer for Diablo III. We asked a lot of questions related to Patch 2.1, mostly focusing on what Blizzard has in store to keep people interested in the game.


Before giving you the transcript of the interview, here is a condensed list of what we have learned.
  • It is not yet determined how long the ladder seasons will last. The first season will help figure out what the right duration should be.
  • To keep people into the game, new types of Legendaries will eventually be introduced and some console-specific features may be ported to PC.
  • The removal of the Auction House has been extremely well received by players and Blizzard is very happy that this feature is gone.
  • Having the possibility of gearing up your other characters from your main character is something that came up during the development of Patch 2.0 and it is a good idea, but it is not currently being implemented.
  • It is nearly impossible for very well geared players to improve their gear, and Blizzard is looking into ways to improve that.
  • There is nothing new planned for Blood Shards.
  • Currently, some level 60 items are so good that it is almost impossible to find better level 70 items. There are plans to introduce legendaries with new affixes to make them more appealing than these level 60 items. Also, these new legendaries will breathe new life into abilities that are currently underused.

Blizzard Icon Transcript from Interview with Matthew Berger


Q. The new ladder seasons are going to be introduced in Patch 2.1, do you have any idea how often the ladder will be reset?

A. First, Patch 2.1 is going to come on the PS4 and Xbox One, but we will not be bringing the ladder seasons. We will be bringing greater tiered rifts, though. Ladder seasons will be only for PC, because of some technical reasons.

How often the ladder will be reset is going to be based on the first season, how it works, how it is received by the community, get their feedback, and that is going to help us determine exactly how long they should last and how long subsequent seasons will last.

Q. In the future, what kind of new features are you considering adding to the game to keep people playing it? Is it going to be just new items, or are you considering new features like the greater rifts from Patch 2.1?

A. So, in Patch 2.1, we are bringing greater rifts, and with it the legendary gems. We are also some more content in the form of Greed's Realm, which is a new special boss you can find. On the Ultimate Evil edition, we are also bringing console-specific features and we are going to see how those are received by the community and maybe decide whether to bring them over to PC. For instance, we have apprentice mode where it allows players of different levels to play together, and the lower level character is going to be boosted up during that session. So, you are able to play with a level 70 character and a level 10 character, and the level 10 character can still have a good time.

Also, we have the nemesis system. If you die, while playing the game, there is a chance that the monster that killed you is going to level up. It is going to turn into this new creature, this nemesis. He is going to open up a portal, jump into the portal, and disappear from your game. And then he is going to find a friend of yours who plays Diablo 3 and who is in your friend list. The next time they log into the game, their controller at some point is going to start to vibrate, there is going to be this music, the portal is going to appear, the nemesis is going to jump out. He is going to have a shadow clone of the player he has killed. If I was playing a female Barbarian, he would have a female Barbarian shadow clone. He has new powers and he is going to attack that player. If that player is able to defeat him, he gets some loot and he gets a gift that he can send back to me. If the nemesis kills him, he is going to become more powerful, he is going to create a second clone, he is going to open up a portal and jump into his friend.

So there are things like that that we are adding for console and sometimes, we bring them back to PC, because we think it is a good idea. Another thing you may notice when you watch the screen (some of us were playing the game while the interview was going on) is that on PC and on the original version on console, you had massacres. You killed 25 people in a massacre, here is a little bit of experience. We have completely changed how it works on console. Now, what happens is when you hit the minimum threshold, when I play on my own it is 10, if there is 2 or more of us, it is 15, a counter is going to appear on the screen, and there will be a sort of timer going down. So, you will be able to see that the massacre is almost over and if you kill a monster, the timer goes back up. You will be able to keep the streak going. Try and get the biggest massacre as possible and once it is done, we are going to give you a lot of experience. It is a huge bonus of experience and that is part of our new action combat on console.

Also, you know how you can destroy barrels and that sort of stuff. If you destroy enough of them quickly, you get a speed bonus. That is not something we do on PC for the moment, but maybe if players enjoy it then we will bring it over to PC. Those are the kind of new features that were introduced for console that may make their way back to PC.

Of course, there is also more content patches that we are working on after 2.1. We want to make sure that we keep bringing things to players to make sure that they keep being interested, whether it is on console or on PC.

Q. So, what is your experience with the removal of the Auction House?

A. It was something we put really to help players. We wanted to make sure that players did not have their accounts compromised by having to go to trading websites. We listened to the community and the auction house created a series of problems because you ended up playing the Auction House and not the game, which we did not want. Removing the Auction House and, at the same time, improving the loot drops and the quality of the loot, going into 2.0, really helped the game. It breathed new life into it. Players were once again excited about each item that dropped. You did not have to go to this user interface to buy your loot, so we are very happy now that it is gone and the feedback from players is that they are very happy as well.

Q. Many players like to play several characters and once one of them is well geared, it takes just as long to gear up the other characters. Are there any plans to make it a bit like WoW, where you have loot specializations, or something that would influence your smart loot drops to provide gear for your other characters?

A. That's a great idea and a very good question. This is a topic that came up when we were working on loot 2.0. So, that idea came up, also the idea of maybe I want loot that it is going to drop and that I will be able to give to my followers and how this is going to work... Once of the things that happened is because we are really targeting the loot, you almost expect everything to drop to be good for your character or at least usable by your character, and the moment it is not, it feels very weird now. But, that is a very good idea. There are no plans right now, but this is definitely something I will keep in the back of my mind. I will bring it up with some people, it would be cool.

Q. You have been doing several week-ends with buffs, to increase their loot drops. What is for you the idea drop rate? I suppose somewhere between not too much so they keep on playing and enough so they do not abandon all hope.

A. No. It is not "just enough to they keep playing". We want players to play the game, because they are having a great time. So things we add: action combat on console, nemesis, greater rifts, rifts, adventure mode, etc. that is what we are putting into the game that makes you want to come back. That is what makes you want to keep playing, you are having a good time, you want to keep playing it. As you are doing this, we want you to be... you know... every time you play the game, you should be surprised by the loot in a positive way. You should find something that is going to be interesting for you, whether that is an upgrade or a legendary item that you might want or that you might not want but that you can disenchant and then use the enchantress to improve one of your legendary item. We really want you to have that. Of course, the better your gear, the harder it is going to be for you to find an upgrade, because you are going to be very specialized. We are looking at different ways to solve that problem, maybe finding other ways for players who have very very good gear to still have a thrill of finding great loot, great equipment, even though for them it is a bit narrower.

Q. Is there anything else planned for Blood Shards? People call it gambling, but it really is not gambling, because you can only spend them at Kadala.

A. No, for the moment, we are not planning anything else with the Blood Shards. It is a possibility, but it is not something that we are actually working on right now. Kadala is kind of there to reward you for going through a rift and if you do not find any items that are upgrades for you, you kind of get a second chance to try and get something. But, who knows down the line.

Q. Many players are still wearing level 60 items, because it is near impossible to replace them with better level 70 items. Are there any plans to fix that?

A. That is a better questions for someone like Wyatt Cheng or Travis Day. They know all of the intricacies about it. I know that one of the things we are working on is introducing legendaries that have interesting legendary affixes and not just increased stat ranges/values, but instead make you play a little bit differently, make you want to use different abilities/talents that you are not used to, maybe change your build. Because that is more interesting for you as a player than "This one is 25%!", "This one is 30%!!". Obviously, the numbers are important because they help you kill things, but we would like you to get choices that are more interesting. The idea is that an item that allows you play in a way that is more interesting is much better than something that is just going to increase the numbers. This is definitely the direction the guys who are working on the weapons are going. They are working very hard at that.

Q. Are there any new sets planned that are going to affect gameplay more than the current ones? The current sets are really nice and there are so many ways to play your character, but I was wondering it there is anything really new that will be coming up, for example for abilities that are being left out.

A. I have nothing to announce at the moment, but I will say these few things. The guys working on the items are very aware of what abilities might be used less than others and they are always trying to find ways to help those abilities, to breath new life into them. Legendary items are a great ways to do that. In terms of sets themselves, they take more work to do than a legendary piece of equipment. It takes a little longer to bring those into the game. So, it kind of depends, but you know it is always a possibility and the most important thing is they really want to use legendary items in a way that is much more interesting for players. That is definitely a way of doing that.
1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Similar Content

    • By Stan

      A new Beta Build has hit test servers yesterday. You can resurrect in Greater Rift runs instantly and the time is now directly added to the completion timer.
      Instant GR Resurrection
      On live, every death in Greater Rifts increases your respawn timer by 5 seconds (up to a maximum of 30 seconds). Patch 2.6.0 changes things around a little, and the time is now directly added to your Greater Rift completion time.

      Screenshot is a courtesy of redditor Oagoz
      New Necromancer Legendary Items
      Many new Legendary affixes have been added to the game for Necromancers and you can find them here (again, screenshots have been mady by Oagoz).
      Instant resurrection in Greater Rifts, Necromancer Class Sets & more.
      Patch 2.6.0 Build 45183
      The testing primarily focuses now on Necromancer Class Sets, because they've just been added to Adventure Mode. Below are full patch notes with latest changes highlighted in red.
      Blizzard (Source)
      PTR PATCH 2.6.0 - v2.6.0.45183
      Below you'll find the preliminary notes for Patch 2.6.0, including the Necromancer beta. Please note that this isn't the final version and that some changes may not be documented or described in full detail.
      Please note that content availability during the beta will vary depending on testing needs.
      General
      New Feature: Challenge Rifts Explore new builds created by fellow players in a weekly static dungeon. You can access these through the main screen, similar to Adventure Mode and Campaign Mode. Note: New Challenge Rifts may be available more frequently during the beta. Classes
      New Class: Necromancer As a master of the dark arts, you wield the powers of life and death necessary to restore the Balance! Necromancers are powerful spell casters who lay waste to their enemies using curses and reanimation—along with an obedient cadre of pets. This new class employs a controlled gameplay style using the raw materials of life: blood and bone. Skills Corpse Explosion Base Rune Target an area exploding all corpses within 11 yards dealing 150% 250% weapon damage to enemies within 20 yards Close Quarters Explodes corpses close to you, dealing 200% 325% weapon damage to enemies within 20 yards Corpse Lance Base Rune Target an enemy to summon projectiles from nearby corpses that cause 750% 900% weapon damage to the target Land of the Dead Base Rune All corpse skills can be used at will for 5 10 seconds Army of the Dead Base Rune Raise a massive skeletal army to pummel the targeted location dealing 3,000% 12,000% weapon damage in a 15 yard radius Frozen Army Weapon damage increased to 3,600% 12,000% and they attack all enemies in a line Dead Storm Raise a storm of the dead that surround you damaging enemies for 2,000% 15,500% weapon damage over 5 seconds Unconventional Warfare Damage increased to 50,000% total weapon damage Catatonic Grasp Has been renamed to Blighted Grasp Has been redesigned Skeletal hands raise from the ground damaging enemies within 15 yards for 14,000% total weapon damage as Poison over 5 seconds Passives Final Service When this passive successfully prevents death, the Necromancer is immune to incoming damage for 4 seconds Note: The tooltip does not currently reflect this Bug Fixes Decay Golem Fixed an issue where Decay golem was not benefiting from the unlimited corpses granted by Land of the Dead Items
      General Scythes and Phylacteries are now sold by some of the vendors throughout the world Class Sets Bones of Rathma ([PH] Bone / Pet Set) (2) Set Bonus Your pets have a chance to reduce the cooldown of Army of the Dead by 1 second each time they deal damage (4) Set Bonus You gain 1% damage reduction each time your pets deal damage. Max 50 stacks. (6) Set Bonus Each active Skeleton Mage increases the damage of your minions and Army of the Dead by 200% Trag’Oul’s Avatar ([PH] Blood Set) (2) Set Bonus Blood Rush gains the effect of every rune (4) Set Bonus While at full life, your healing from skills is added to your maximum life for 45 seconds. Up to 100% more. (6) Set Bonus Spending 10% life grants you a stack of Blood Cascade. Each stack of Blood Cascade increases the damage of life-spending attacks by 200% and also increases the life you lose by 10%. Using a skill to heal will consume a stack and heal for an additional 300% Grace of Inarius ([PH] Saint Set) (2) Set Bonus Bone Armor’s damage is increased by 1000% (4) Set Bonus Bone Armor stacks are now refreshed. In addition, Bone Armor grants an additional 2% damage reduction per enemy hit (6) Set Bonus Bone Armor also activates a Bone Tornado damaging nearby enemies by 375% weapon damage as Physical. Enemies hit by the tornado take 850% additional damage from the Necromancer’s abilities and minions Pestilence Master’s Shroud ([PH] Melee Set) (2) Set Bonus Each corpse you consume fires a Corpse Lance at a nearby enemy (4) Set Bonus Each enemy hit by Bone Spear reduces your damage taken by 2% up to a maximum of 50%. Lasts 15 seconds. (6) Set Bonus Each corpse you consume grants you an Empowered Bone Spear charge that increases the damage of your next Bone Spear by 1000% Hellfire Amulet Necromancer passives have been added for this item Halcyon’s Ascent Added skills to this item for the Necromancer Adventure Mode
      New Zones: The Moors & The Temple of the Firstborn The fog-enshrouded Moors and the darkened Temple of the Firstborn can be explored in Adventure Mode through a new waypoint on the Act 2 map. Set Dungeons The user interface has been updated to better explain tier completion requirements. With this, the basic completion tier must be finished within the given time limit. The time limit to complete a Set Dungeon has been increased to 5 minutes Necromancer Set Dungeons have been added to Adventure Mode Bounties Four new Waypoints have appeared in Act IV. Each one has bounties to complete. These Realms of Fate are the unintended consequences of the battle between the nephalem and Diablo in the High Heavens. Greater Rifts Players who die in solo Greater Rifts can now choose to immediately resurrect. When choosing this option, the time remaining on your death timer will be removed from the remaining Greater Rift time and your cooldowns will be advanced by the same amount. PTR Only Fixed an issue which sometimes prevented players from completing the “Clear the Forgotten Well” bounty
    • By Starym

       
      We get to see almost all the active and passive skills of the new class, runes included!
      It seems even those of is without a beta key get some goodies today, as Blizzard have posted a preview of the Necro's skills and passives! There were no sill gifs in Blizzard's original preview, but we've enhanced ours with gifs from previous ones where available!

      And if you're wondering what else is coming with the Necromancer patch, check out the patch notes right here.
      Blizzard (source)
      The power of blood, bone, curses, and hordes of obedient minions are the Necromancer’s to command. After many months of development, we’re now ready to give you the low-down on the skills and passive abilities that are now available for select testers to try in the Necromancer Closed Beta.
      Note: The following content is still under development. Both numbers and functionality may still be subject to substantial change. In addition, Necromancer-specific Legendary items and class sets are not yet available for testing.
      Table of Contents
      Primary Secondary Blood & Bone Reanimation Curses Corpses Passives Primary
      Bone Spikes
      Base Skill (Physical) Generate: 24 Essence. Summon bone spikes from the ground dealing 150% weapon damage per second. Sudden Impact (Physical) Bone spikes stun enemies for 1 second. Path of Bones (Physical) Now unleashes a line of spikes that deals 100% weapon damage. Damage is increased by up to 100% for those further away. Bone Pillars (Poison) Instead strikes the target and up to two nearby enemies with large bone pillars for 150% weapon damage. Frost Spikes (Cold) Leaves a frost patch that reduces the movement speed by 60% for 2 seconds. Blood Spikes (Physical) Enemies bleed for 50% weapon damage over 2 seconds and heal you for 0.5% of your total life over the duration. Siphon Blood
      Base Skill (Physical) Generate: 15 Essence each time damage is dealt. Siphon the blood from the targeted enemy dealing 300% weapon damage. Siphon Blood heals you for 2% of your total health every second while channeled.
      Suppress (Cold) Enemies are also slowed by 75%. Purity of Essence (Physical) Essence gained is increased to 20 while you are at full health. Drain Life (Physical) Increases the amount of health restored to 6% but no longer restores Essence. Power Shift (Poison) Damage is increased by 10% each time damage is dealt. Max 10 stacks. Blood Sucker (Physical) You pull in all health globes within 40 yards while siphoning. Grim Scythe
      Base Skill (Physical) Generate: 12 Essence per enemy hit Slash with a summoned Scythe in front of you dealing 150% weapon damage as Physical.
      Blood Scythe (Physical) Heal for 1% of your health per enemy hit. Execution (Physical) Enemies below 20% health have a 5% chance to be decapitated and instantly killed. Frost Scythe (Cold) Each enemy hit increases your attack speed by 1% for 5 seconds. Max 15 stacks. Dual Scythes (Physical) Slash with two summoned Scythes in front of you dealing 150% weapon damage as Physical and push enemies together. Cursed Scythe (Poison) Enemies hit by the scythe have a 15% chance to be inflicted with a random curse. Return to Top
      Secondary
      Death Nova
      Base Skill (Poison)
      Cost: 20 Essence Unleash a Nova that deals 350% weapon damage to all enemies within 25 yards. Tendril Nova (Physical) Now heals you for 1% of your health per target hit and reduces damage dealt to 225%. Bone Nova (Physical) Spines radiate outward and deal 475% weapon damage within 12 yards. Blood Nova (Physical) Spend 10% health to unleash a Blood Nova that deals 450% weapon damage to all nearby enemies within 25 yards.
      Blight (Poison) Leave a lingering patch of blight on the ground slowing enemies by 60% and causing them to deal 15% less damage for 1 second. Unstable Compound (Poison) Each cast increases the radius of your next Nova by 5 yards up to 2 times. Bone Spear
      Base Skill (Physical) Cost: 20 Essence Summon a piercing bone projectile that causes 450% weapon damage to all enemies it passes through.
      Crystallization (Cold) Each enemy hit has their attack speed reduced by 20% and your attack speed is increased by 3% for 3 seconds stacking up to 10 times. Shatter (Physical) Instead of piercing now detonates on the first enemy hit dealing 450% to all enemies within 15 yards. Blighted Marrow (Poison) Damage is increased by 15% for each enemy Bone Spear passes through. Blood Spear (Physical) Bone Spear turns into Blood Spear. Damage is increased to 518% weapon damage at the cost of 10% health. Teeth (Physical) Launches 5 razor sharp teeth that deal 300% weapon damage. Skeleton Mage
      Base Skill (Physical) Cost: 40 Essence Raise a skeleton from the ground to attack your foes dealing 400% weapon damage per attack. Lasts 6 seconds. Gift of Death (Physical) Risen Skeletons leave a corpse behind when they die or expire. Singularity (Physical) Consumes all Essence to summon a powerful minion. The minion’s damage is increased by 3% for every point of Essence consumed. Life Support (Physical) Risen Mages cost 10% health to cast but lasts an additional 2 seconds. Contamination (Poison) Raise a contaminated mage that channels an aura of decay for 175% weapon damage for its duration. Skeleton Archer (Cold) Raise a Skeleton Archer that deals 400% weapon damage. Skeleton Archers increase your attack speed by 3% for 5 seconds each time they deal damage. Max 10 stacks. Return to Top
      Blood & Bone
      Bone Armor
      Base Skill (Physical) Cost: 10 Essence Cooldown: 10 seconds Rip bones from nearby enemies, dealing 150% weapon damage, and create armor that reduces damage taken by 3% per enemy hit up to a maximum of 10 enemies. Bone Armor lasts 60 seconds. [Placeholder] Increased Damage (Physical) Damage dealt to enemies is increased by 200%. [Placeholder] Immunity (Physical) Your armor absorbs all incoming damage for 5 seconds and grants immunity to all control impairing effects. Dislocation (Physical) Enemies hit are also stunned for 2 seconds. Thy Flesh Sustained (Physical) Cost: 20% Health Increases your Life per Second by 10% per target hit. Reap of Anguish (Physical) Bone Armor also increases your movement speed by 1% for each enemy hit. Bone Spirit
      Base Skill (Physical) Launch a Bone Spirit that will seek enemies. Deals 4000% damage on impact. You gain a charge every 15 seconds and can store up to 3 charges.  Recharge time is reduced by 1 second for each corpse you consume. Possession (Physical) Bone Spirit will now charm the target for 10 seconds at the cost of 10% health. Panic Attack (Poison) Enemies within 10 yards are feared for 2 seconds when Bone Spirit detonates. Poltergeist (Cold) Increases the maximum number of charges to 4. Unfinished Business (Cold) Bone Spirit explodes dealing 1250% weapon damage to all enemies within 10 yards on detonation. Astral Projection (Cold) Damage is increased by 15% for each enemy that Bone Spirit passes through while seeking its target. Blood Rush
      Base Skill (Physical) Cooldown: 5 seconds Cost: 5% Health Shed your mortal flesh and reappear up to 50 yards away.
      Transfusion (Physical) Heals for 2% of your maximum health for every enemy passed through. Hemostasis (Physical) Removes the health cost. Metabolism (Physical) Blood Rush now has 2 charges, but its health cost is doubled. Potency (Physical) Increases your armor by 100% for 2 seconds after casting. Molting (Physical) Leaves a corpse at your original location when used. Simulacrum
      Base Skill (Physical) Cost: 50% Health Cooldown: 120 seconds Create a Simulacrum made of blood that will duplicate your Essence Spenders for 15 seconds. Reservoir (Physical) Your maximum Essence is increased by 100% while your Simulacrum is active. Cursed Form (Physical) While active, your curse skills now apply all three curses. [Placeholder] Blood Debt (Physical) Life costs for skills are reduced by 75% while Simulacrum is active. Blood and Bone (Physical) Now also creates a Simulacrum of Bone, but the duration is reduced to 10 seconds. Self Sacrifice (Physical) If you would die with a Simulacrum active, instead the Simulacrum is destroyed and you are fully healed. Return to Top
      Reanimation
      Land of the Dead
      Base Skill (Physical) Cooldown: 120 seconds All corpse skills can be used at will for 5 seconds. Invigoration (Physical) Your skills do not cost Essence while Land of the Dead is active. Frozen Lands (Cold) Enemies in the Land of the Dead are periodically frozen. Plaguelands (Poison) Land of the Dead deals up to 5,000% weapon damage to enemies over its duration. Land of Plenty (Physical) You are healed for 2% of your maximum life whenever you kill an enemy while Land of the Dead is active. Shallow Graves (Physical) Every 10 enemies killed extends the duration by 1 second up to a maximum of 2 seconds. Command Skeletons
      Base Skill (Physical) Cost: 50 Essence Active: Command your skeletal minions to attack the target and increase their damage by 50% for 5 seconds. Passive: Raise skeletons from the ground every 2 seconds to a max of 7 skeletons. Skeletal minions deal 50% weapon damage per attack.
      Enforcer (Physical) Reduces the active Essence cost to 25. Dark Mending (Physical) Skeletal minions will heal you for 0.5% of your total health per hit while being commanded. Freezing Grasp (Cold) The target of your command is frozen for 3 seconds. Kill Command (Poison) Now commands your skeletons to explode, dealing 80% weapon damage to enemies within 15 yards. Frenzy (Physical) Commanded skeletons go into a frenzy, gaining 25% increased attack speed for the duration. Command Golem
      Base Skill (Poison) Cooldown: 60 seconds Active: Command the Golem to the targeted location where it collapses into a pile of 5 corpses. Passive: Raise a Flesh Golem to fight for you. Flesh Golem deals 450% weapon damage per attack. Bone Golem (Physical) Active: The Golem becomes a tornado of bone carrying all nearby enemies to the targeted location and rooting them in place for 2 seconds. Blood Golem (Physical) Active: The Golem sacrifices itself healing you for 25% of your health and reconstructs at the targeted location. As the Golem reconstructs, veiny tendrils damage nearby enemies for 450% weapon damage.
      Flesh Consuming Golem (Poison) Active: The Golem consumes corpses at the targeted location increasing its damage by 30% per corpse. Decay Golem (Poison) Active: Command the Golem to the targeted location where it collapses into a pile of 8 corpses. Ice Golem (Cold) Active: Command the Golem to the targeted location where it freezes enemies for 3 seconds and increases their chance to be critically struck by 10% for 10 seconds. Army of the Dead
      Base Skill (Physical) Cooldown: 120 seconds Raise a massive skeletal army to pummel the targeted location dealing 3000% weapon damage in a 15 yard radius. Catatonic Grasp (Poison) Hands raise from the ground and immobilize enemies in place for 5 seconds. Frozen Army (Cold) Weapon damage increased to 3600% and they attack all enemies in a line. Unconventional Warfare (Physical) Skeletons will rise from the ground and attack random targets for 4 seconds. [Placeholder] Death Valley (Physical) The skeletal army knocks all effected enemies towards the center. Dead Storm (Physical) Raise a storm of the dead that surround you damaging enemies for 2000% weapon damage over 5 seconds. Return to Top
      Curses
      Decrepify
      Base Skill (Physical) Cost: 10 Essence A crippling curse that reduces the enemy units’ movement speed by 75% and reduces damage done by 20% for 30 seconds. Opportunist (Physical) Gain a 3% movement speed increase for every enemy cursed. Borrowed Time (Physical) Gain 1% cooldown reduction for every enemy cursed. Wither (Physical) Damage reduction increased to 30%, but no longer reduces movement speed. Dizzying Curse (Physical) Cursed enemies have a 10% chance to be stunned for 2 seconds when hit. Enfeeblement (Physical) Increase the potency of the movement speed reduction for the first 5 seconds. Frailty
      Base Skill (Physical) Cost: 10 Essence A crippling curse that kills enemies with less than 15% health.  Lasts 30 seconds. [Placeholder] Essence Return (Physical) Gain 2 essence when a cursed enemy dies. Volatile Death (Physical) Cursed enemies explode for 100% weapon damage on death. Scent of Blood (Physical) Cursed enemies take 15% increased damage from your minions. Aura of Frailty (Physical) Becomes an aura that curses all enemies within 15 yards. The range of this effect is increased by 50% of your gold pickup radius. Early Grave (Physical) Triggers at 18% life but costs 10% of your life. Leech
      Base Skill (Physical) Cost: 10 Essence Curse the target area. Cursed enemies have a chance to heal the attacker when they are struck for 1% of their total health. Lasts 30 seconds.
      Transmittable (Physical) Enemies that die while cursed will spread the curse to a nearby unaffected target. Sanguine End (Physical) Whenever a cursed enemy dies, you are healed for 200% of your Life per Kill. Cursed Ground (Physical) Now curses the ground, healing you for 0.5% of your maximum life every second for each enemy in the cursed area. Blood Flask (Physical) Whenever a cursed enemy dies your potion cooldown is reduced by 1 second. Osmosis (Physical) Each cursed enemy increases your life regeneration by 751 per second. Return to Top
      Corpses
      Corpse Explosion
      Base Skill (Physical) Target an area exploding all corpses within 11 yards dealing 150% weapon damage to enemies within 20 yards.
      Final Embrace (Physical) Corpses pull themselves towards the nearest enemy before exploding, but Corpse Explosion now costs 3% life per corpse. Close Quarters (Poison) Now explodes corpses close to you, dealing 200% weapon damage to enemies within 20 yards. Bloody Mess (Physical) Explosion radius is increased to 25 yards. Dead Cold (Cold) Freeze all enemies caught in the explosion for 2 seconds. Shrapnel (Poison) Corpses now explode away from you, hitting all targets in a cone. Corpse Lance
      Base Skill (Physical) Target an enemy to summon projectiles from nearby corpses that cause 750% weapon damage to the target. Brittle Touch (Cold) Enemies become brittle increasing their chance to be crit by 5% for 5 seconds each time they are hit with Corpse Lance. Blood Lance (Physical) Spend 5% of your total health to launch an additional lance from yourself towards the target that deals 250% weapon damage. Visceral Impact (Physical) Stuns the target for 3 seconds. Shredding Splinters (Poison) Each lance slows the target by 10% and reduces its damage by 6% for 10 seconds. Stacks up to 5 times. Ricochet (Physical) Corpse Lance has a 20% chance to ricochet to one additional target. Devour
      Base Skill (Physical) Consume corpses within 60 yards to restore 10 Essence per corpse. Ruthless (Physical) Additionally consumes your minions for 10 Essence per minion killed. Voracious (Physical) Reduces all Essence costs by 2% for each corpse consumed for 5 seconds. Devouring Aura (Physical) Becomes an aura that consumes all corpses within 15 yards to restore 11 Essence per corpse. The range of this effect is increased by 50% of your gold pickup radius. Satiated (Physical) Increases maximum life by 2% for 2 seconds for each corpse devoured. Cannibalize (Physical) Each corpse consumed also restores 3% health.
      Revive
      Base Skill (Physical) Target an area reviving up to 10 corpses within 20 yards for 15 seconds. Oblation (Physical) Increases the damage of revived creatures by 20% but each Revive now costs 3% health. Personal Army (Physical) Damage taken is reduced by 1% for each revived minion active? Recklessness (Cold) Revived minions deal an additional 150% damage but last 6 seconds. Damage dealt is turned into Cold. [Placeholder] Horrific Return (Poison) When you revive a corpse, enemies within 20 yards run in fear for 3 seconds. Purgatory (Physical) Revived minions degenerate back into a usable corpse at the end of their duration. Return to Top
      Passives
      Fueled by Death
      Consuming a corpse increases your run speed by 3% for 5 seconds. Life from Death
      Consuming a corpse has a 20% chance to spawn a Health Globe. Stand Alone
      Increase Armor by 100%, reduced by 10% for each active minion. Bone Prison
      Bone Spear, Bone Spikes and Bone Spirit have a 10% chance to trap enemies in a Bone Prison for 3 seconds. Commander of the Dead
      The Essence cost of Command Skeletons and the cooldown of Command Golem are reduced by 30%. Swift Harvesting
      Increase the attack speed of Bone Spikes, Siphon Blood and Grim Scythe by 15%. Aberrant Animator
      Your minions gain 200% of your Thorns. Eternal Torment
      Your curses cost 50% less Essence and last forever. Blood for Blood
      Picking up a health globe removes the health cost of the next Blood spell. This effect can stack up to 3 times. Blood is Power
      Every 5% health lost will reduce all remaining cooldowns by 1%. Draw Life
      Increases your Health Regen by 10% for each enemy within 20 yards. Extended Servitude
      Increase the duration of your Skeletal Mage and Revive minions by 25%. Final Service
      If you would take lethal damage instead all minions are consumed and heal you for 10% of your health. This effect cannot occur more than once every 60 seconds. Grisly Tribute
      You are healed for 10% of your Life on Hit when one of your minions hits an enemy. Overwhelming Essence
      Increase your maximum Essence by 40. Rathma’s Shield
      You cannot lose life for 4 seconds after using Land of the Dead, Army of the Dead and Simulacrum. Reaping
      While using a scythe gain 1% Essence and Life per kill. Rigor Mortis
      Blight abilities also slow enemies by 30% and reduce their attack speed by 15% for 5 seconds. Serration
      Bone Spikes, Bone Spear and Bone Spirit deal 1% increased damage for every 2 yards between you, up to a maximum of 15%. Return to Top
       
      Curses and Summons and Blood
      The Necromancer packs a huge variety of skills across long range, short range, and pet-oriented skills. What kind of Necromancer are you looking forward to playing? Do you want to sacrifice your health for additional power using Blood skills? Or do you prefer being the master of minions and want to surround yourself with an undead army?
      Stay tuned for more Necromancer information in the coming weeks as the Closed Beta begins and don’t forget to opt in for the chance to join if you haven’t already!
    • By Starym

       
      The beta is finally here and the patch itself brings a few more things in addition to the titular class, including challenge rifts, new zones and new waypoints in old ones!

      You can also check out the official necromancer skill overview, covering most (or all?) the active and passive abilities the new class has so far (including gifs for some).
      Blizzard (source)
      Please note that participation in the Necromancer beta test will be by invitation to ensure focused feedback and a smooth testing experience. For details on how to participate, please see this blog.
      Installation and Play Instructions: To install and play the Necromancer beta test, please follow the instructions below:
      Step 1: If you were invited to the beta test, verify that your account has been granted a beta license in Blizzard Account Management.
      Step 2: Download and install the Blizzard launcher.
      Step 3: Once you have installed the Blizzard launcher, log in with your credentials and select Diablo III from the menu on the left-hand side.
      Step 4: On the Diablo III screen, there is a drop-down menu above the "Play" button (note that this may say "Install" if you do not have Diablo III currently installed). Select " Necromancer Beta Test" from this drop-down menu before proceeding.
      Step 5: You should now have the option to install and play the beta.
      Beta Character Copy:
      The option to copy your existing Diablo III characters from your live account to the beta will be available and can be done directly through the beta client.
      Step 1: Log into the beta client and create a level 1 character. After you're done, return to the main character screen.
      Step 2: Note the “PTR Copy” button at the top right of the Home Screen. (This button will not appear in-game until you have created a new level 1 character.)
      Step 3: Select your region.
      Step 4: Click "Copy." This will copy all characters on your account from the selected region.
      Step 5: You may be disconnected from the beta client.
      Step 6: Log back in. Your copied characters will be available for play.
      Please note that you can only copy characters from one gameplay region at a time. If you choose to copy characters from a different region, any previously copied beta characters will be lost.
      In addition, you can only copy characters over to your beta account once every 24 hours. Attempting to copy characters before this cooldown is up will result in an error.
      PTR PATCH 2.6.0 - v2.6.0.44923
      Below you'll find the preliminary notes for Patch 2.6.0, including the Necromancer beta. Please note that this isn't the final version and that some changes may not be documented or described in full detail.
      Please note that content availability during the beta will vary depending on testing needs.
       
      GENERAL
      New Feature: Challenge Rifts Explore new builds created by fellow players in a weekly static dungeon. You can access these through the main screen, similar to Adventure Mode and Campaign Mode. Note: New Challenge Rifts may be available more frequently during the beta.
      CLASSES
      New Class: Necromancer As a master of the dark arts, you wield the powers of life and death necessary to restore the Balance! Necromancers are powerful spell casters who lay waste to their enemies using curses and reanimation—along with an obedient cadre of pets. This new class employs a controlled gameplay style using the raw materials of life: blood and bone.
      ADVENTURE MODE
      New Zones: The Moors & The Temple of the Firstborn The fog-enshrouded Moors and the darkened Temple of the Firstborn can be explored in Adventure Mode through a new waypoint on the Act 2 map. Set Dungeons The user interface has been updated to better explain tier completion requirements. With this, the basic completion tier must be finished within the given time limit. Bounties Four new Waypoints have appeared in Act IV. Each one has bounties to complete. These Realms of Fate are the unintended consequences of the battle between the nephalem and Diablo in the High Heavens.
    • By Starym

       
      We may get to play the Necromancer "soon" it seems, as the closed beta is about to arrive. Blizzard have announced the "extremely limited" (in terms of people admitted, anyway) test period for the newest Diablo 3 class is almost here and we should opt in on our battle.net accounts if we want to see it before patch 2.6.0 goes live (which won't be that soon).

      The beta will contain all Necro abilities and runes, as well as their legendary items added over time and other patch 2.6.0 features as well. They don't appear to be planning an open beta as of yet but the closed one will not have an NDA.
      Blizzard (source)
      Prepare yourselves—the Necromancer beta test is right around the corner, nephalem!
      Invitations to our closed beta test will soon be going out worldwide. If you are invited, we'd love to hear all about your adventures on the forums, watch your live streams, and see screenshots and videos of your experiences as you wield the dark powers of the Necromancer.
      Please keep in mind that the Necromancer and other parts of Patch 2.6.0 are still in development. As such, content in the closed beta may change and does not necessarily represent the final version.
      For additional information about the closed beta, including how to participate and answers to frequently asked questions, read on below!

      How to Participate:
      If you're interested in participating in the Necromancer beta test, you’ll want to make sure you've opted-in for beta testing. To opt in, simply visit your Beta Profile Settings page in Account Management, check the Diablo box under Beta Tests I'm Interested In, and then click Update Preferences. In order to be eligible to participate in the closed beta, you must have an active Diablo III license attached to your Blizzard account in good standing (i.e. not suspended or banned).

      Please note that opting in to the Necromancer beta test does not guarantee you access (especially since invites to our closed beta will be extremely limited), but it does at least give you a chance at joining the beta test.

      Necromancer Beta Test FAQ:
      How are beta test participants selected from the opt-in pool?
      Beta testers are chosen according to their system specifications, in-game activity, and other factors, including an element of luck.
      How will I know if I'm selected to participate in the beta?
      If you are selected to participate in the Necromancer beta test, you will receive an invite via email. This invitation will always be sent to the email address associated with your Blizzard account.
      Will there be any other ways to get into the beta besides opting-in?
      In addition to opt-ins, we are also inviting key members of the community on a case-by-case basis. Invites to the Necromancer beta test will be extremely limited, however, and opting in is your best way to get in.
      How many players do you plan to invite to the beta test?
      The number of players we invite will be based on our testing needs. If we ultimately determine we need more players to participate after the initial testing, we’ll invite more.
      What game content will be available in the beta?
      Players who participate will have access to all of the Necromancer’s skills and abilities, as well as other Patch 2.6.0 content. In addition, new Legendary and Set items unique to the Necromancer will be added in over time. Our upcoming patch notes will have all the details on what’s included.
      How long will the beta test last?
      We have not determined an exact date for the end of the beta test. We will notify participants when the beta test is nearing completion.
      Will there be an open beta?
      In order to ensure focused feedback and a smooth testing experience for beta players, the Necromancer beta test will be invite-only for the duration of the test.
      Is there an NDA?
      There is no non-disclosure agreement (NDA) for the Necromancer beta test. You are welcome to take screenshots, livestream your play sessions, and record feedback videos. Please keep in mind that the game is still a work in progress, though, and we appreciate your understanding when you encounter bugs, graphical errors, or other issues.
      Will Mac users be able to participate in the beta test?
      Yes, Mac users will be able to participate in the beta at the same time as Windows users.
    • By Blainie

      With such a vast array of items, skills and classes in Diablo 3, it can be very troublesome trying to get into the game as either a new player, someone trying out a new class or just someone getting back into the game. We've made sure to update all of our beginner guides for Season 10, so that you know exactly what to do in the early-game!
      The guides are mainly tailored to help players understand the most efficient ways to play their class while leveling to 70, as well as in the early torment levels prior to obtaining the vast multitude of legendaries available. There is a Leveling and Early 70 guide for each class, which can be found linked below:
      Barbarian Crusader Demon Hunter Monk Witch Doctor Wizard The builds outline different possibilities with the Haedrig's Gift sets, of which each class receives one. If you're wondering what your class set is, you can find them below:
      Barbarian - Raekor Crusader - Akkhan Demon Hunter - Marauder Monk - Inna's Witch Doctor - Zunimassa Wizard - Delsere's Good luck in the new season everyone and have fun!